Good morning on what may be a snowy day today. The weather people predict falling temperatures (from mid to low 30s to low 20s) over the day and for our area--lake effect snow. As much as 6-8 inches. We are going to make a trip to the gas station to top off the tank. We want a full tank just in case.
I have found three or four needles the hard way over the years, Nicola. Now, when I loose one, I search until I find it. And any spent needles are put in either a paper shroud or into a vial that is being thrown away also.
I have to ask--what the hell is going on? Saw this story this morning and have seen 3 or 4 in Chicago over the last month. I think every one of them involved a drunk driver.
Well, the banks, the states, and the Federal Government have reached an agreement in the mortgage mess. I am glad the big five banks will have to pay something. However, the payment of $1500 to $2000 for those who lost their homes when the banks wrongly foreclosed may be a lot of money until compared to what those homeowners lost. It is nice that the banks have to start renegotiating with homeowners to refinance and may even have to reduce the principle for some. But they have three years to do so. That is a kick the can down the road provision that keeps people in mortgage limbo. And I wonder how long before the banks lobbyists go to their tame congress critters to get relief. The only really good thing--the agreement did not grant an immunity from criminal charges. At least from what I have read so far. Only one commenter last night noted a big potential problem--the homeowner who has been trying to refinance only to be told by his bank that he 'doesn't qualify' but sees his neighbor getting the refi. How long before such homeowners just flip them the bird and walk away? For a better discussion on which criteria should determine how good this deal is (or is not), see this piece from Crooks&Liars.
The local news had a small segment this morning that I didn't hear all of but had some interesting aspects. Health insurance companies are resisting measures, whether on state or federal level I didn't hear, that require them to tell their customers in plain language what procedures are covered. They say it would be too onerous a burden on them. Really?? It is too burdensome to deal honestly and plainly with the people whose money you are taking. What bullshit.
And here is another example of the eyeball level of bullshit in our economic/political system. The politicians who yell the loudest about 'waste' in government will gladly subsidize big businesses that are already highly profitable. Worse, the federal agencies which are supposed to protect our health and welfare are thoroughly subverted by the businesses they 'regulate.' And, though I agree with the sentiment in the last paragraph that we protest the incestuous mess by not buying the products, how can we do that when the FDA decides that the industry doesn't have to list certain ingredients (like neotame) or the industry tries to mask their ingredients under innocuous labels (like calling high-fructose corn syrup 'corn sugar')??
I have already used the term bullshit twice so I am going to have to find something else to describe this. Another health threat that our FDA chose not to make public.
When we went out (and yes we completed the errands I mentioned at the beginning) we decided to stop and renew our supply of Excedrin. I had put a dent in it when I had that infected, broken tooth just before Christmas. Well, the local Walgreens had none. They have a blank spot and a notice of the recall from January 9. I would have thought a month would have been sufficient to get things straightened out and new supplies in. We settled for the Walgreens version which is almost the same.