Closing Thought–13Dec17

Mississippi Is Number One!

I wish I was talking about education or economics or jobs outlook….even football…..but unfortunately I am not talking about anything like that………this time we made the most unhealthy state……

Below is the article in the Clarion-Ledger, one of Mississippi’s more read newspapers…….

It’s time again for the United Health Foundation’s annual state health rankings report, and like last year, Mississippi comes in 50th.

Despite being a leader in telehealth and, historically, childhood vaccinations, Mississippi’s high rate of childhood poverty, obesity and cigarette smoking contributes to it being the unhealthiest state in the country, according to the 2017 America’s Health Rankings report.

Of the five categories examined in the report, Mississippi ranked overall 50th for one: clinical care. This has to do with Mississippi’s doctor shortage, lack of mental health providers and preventable hospitalizations.

(please the entire article it will give you an idea about the state)

http://www.clarionledger.com/story/news/politics/2017/12/12/mississippi-again-unhealthiest-state-country/943720001/

I wish just once Mississippi could make it to a “Best” list……but that will not happen until we change the “good old boys” politics…..there is hope for my granddaughter’s generation to make that happen.

My day is over….I am worn out by health stuff and our politics…..time for me to call it a day and shut the ‘puter down…..see you guys tomorrow…..chuq

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An Old Killer Arises

Most everyone knows of the problems Viet vets had upon their return from the war zone….PTSD and those damn symptoms of Agent Orange….well a new killer has been discovered after all these years….

A half a century after serving in Vietnam, hundreds of veterans have a new reason to believe they may be dying from a silent bullet—test results show some men may have been infected by a slow-killing parasite while fighting in the jungles of Southeast Asia. The Department of Veterans Affairs this spring commissioned a small pilot study to look into the link between liver flukes ingested through raw or undercooked fish and a rare bile duct cancer, per the AP. It can take decades for symptoms to appear. By then, patients are often in tremendous pain, with just a few months to live. Of the 50 blood samples submitted, more than 20% came back positive or bordering positive for liver fluke antibodies, said Sung-Tae Hong, the tropical medicine specialist who carried out the tests at Seoul National University in South Korea.

“It was surprising,” he said, stressing the preliminary results could include false positives and that the research is ongoing. Though rarely found in Americans, the parasites infect an estimated 25 million people worldwide. Endemic in the rivers of Vietnam, the worms can easily be wiped out with a handful of pills early on, but left untreated they can live for decades without making their hosts sick. Over time, swelling and inflammation of the bile duct can lead to cancer. Jaundice, itchy skin, weight loss, and other symptoms appear only when the disease is in its final stages. The VA study, along with a call by Sen. Chuck Schumer for broader research into liver flukes and vets stricken with the cancer known as cholangiocarcinoma, began after the AP raised the issue last year. About 700 veterans with cholangiocarcinoma have been seen by the VA in the past 15 years.

Just great!  As if these vets did not have enough on their shoulders…..now this….

May you all have a good Sunday…..be well, be safe…..chuq

The Best Sex Ever?

Sunday and my last day of relaxation before I go back to the hospital for more healing stuff…..I know it is for the best but dammit I would like some time to myself…..stop bitchin’ and get on with the post…….

My regulars know that I try to give my readers something a little different than all the bad news in the world on the weekends and I found a doozey for this Sunday…..

I seems that this guy had the best sex ever!

A man lost partial sight in his eye following a “vigorous” morning sex session with his partner, doctors have revealed.

The 29-year-old was enjoying an extended romp at home when the incident occurred, resulting in the loss of sight in his left eye. He presented his symptoms to doctors at an emergency eye clinic later in the day, it was reported in the British Medical Journal.

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/story-orgasm-so-powerful-it-made-man-blind-one-eye-1648563

But before you attempt to have the best sex ever there is something you should keep in mind……

“STDs are out of control.” So says the director of a coalition of state and local health departments aiming to prevent STDs after an alarming report from the CDC. It reveals the US saw a record number of new cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis for the second year in a row in 2016, reports the Los Angeles Times. New chlamydia cases were up 5% over 2015 to 1.6 million. But especially concerning was the 18.5% climb to 470,000 gonorrhea cases, given the spread of antibiotic-resistant strains, says the CDC’s Gail Bolan. Cases of syphilis, once thought to be nearly eradicated in the US, likewise climbed 17.5% to 28,000, while cases of congenital syphilis were up nearly 28% to 628 cases, resulting in more than 40 newborn deaths, reports CNN.

That alone represents “an unconscionable situation in America today,” David Harvey of the National Coalition of STD Directors tells CNN. But syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea are only part of the problem. It’s estimated that 20 million new cases of STDs, including HIV and herpes, appear in the US each year, half in those aged 15 to 24. Harvey blames “funding cutbacks for prevention, education and healthcare programs … particularly from this administration,” though the data comes from 2016, as well as dating apps. The fact that many STDs present no symptoms is another issue, says Bolan. “We need every community in America to be aware that this risk is out there,” she adds, noting, “everyone needs a yearly checkup.”

Did I make your day?

That is it for today…..I shall be back tomorrow with the usual stuff…..until then….have a good Sunday and be happy and safe…..chuq

Closing Thought–16Nov17

Go Ask Alice!

Lots of talk about the opioid crisis here in this country…..the First Lady and her hubby are trying to make this some sort of signature issue for them…..

So far a lot of rhetoric without much substance but there is nothing but hollow words so far……

It’s no secret that opioid misuse has risen to the level of an epidemic. On November 1, 2017, the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, appointed by President Donald Trump last March, released its long-awaited recommendations on how best to tackle the nation’s opioid crisis.

The stakes have never been higher. Preliminary data indicate that in 2016, 64,000 people—more than the combined number of people killed by gun homicide and in car accidents in 2015—succumbed to drug overdoses. In most of these cases, opioids were involved. Natural and semisynthetic opioids were linked to more than 14,400 overdose deaths, while synthetic opioids other than methadone, which is often used in treatment, contributed to more than 20,100 fatalities. Heroin contributed to roughly 15,400.

https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/poverty/news/2017/11/02/441976/president-trumps-agenda-undermines-rhetoric-opioid-misuse/

Is this just another one of those plans that sounds good but has no bite in doing anything to change the trend?

A question for the experts…..me?  I am finished for the day…..see you guys tomorrow with more tantalizing stuff….Peace Out….chuq

Betraying The Veteran (Again)

For too long the American veteran has been a prop for the political parties….veterans are rolled out whenever they want to project this air of patriotism and then are quickly kicked to the curb and pushed aside.

And it has been that way for 50+ years and nothing ever changes….the vets are lied to, promised, used and discarded like broken tools….one of America’s biggest sources of propaganda.

This President and this Congress are NO different from the past…….

Despite vowing to support America’s veterans, President Donald Trump and congressional Republican leaders have put forth budget proposals that are poised to do great damage to the economic security of veterans and their families—all to pay for tax cuts for millionaires and corporations.1 In fact, new analysis by the Center for American Progress reveals that the tax cuts Trump wants to give corporations and businesses, which will cost $4.3 trillion over 10 years, amount to 28 times as much as the deep cuts he is proposing to services and benefits for veterans.2

And these cuts are just the tip of the iceberg.

Despite the common belief to the contrary, veteran-specific benefits and services fall short of meeting the needs of veterans and their families, many of whom struggle to meet basic needs even with Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) supports.3 More than 3.9 million veterans live paycheck to paycheck—meaning their family incomes are less than twice the federal poverty level, or less than $50,000 for a family of four.4 Yet new CAP analysis reveals that if Trump’s proposed cuts to key job training programs were applied directly to program participation, more than 340,000 veterans could lose access to critical employment services that help boost wages.

Source: 5 Ways President Trump and Congressional Republicans Are Betraying Veterans – Center for American Progress

Our veterans deserve so much more than this country is willing to give them….the country asked….they went…..now they are ignored.

Ignored that is until the powers need another prop to trot out to lather up the base.

My Early Days With Health Care

Ding Dong……Health care is dead!

I cannot wait for the strong anti-McCain rhetoric….that he is a RINO….a traitor….on and on….I am sure the Trump will Tweet something derogatory.  WAIT FOR IT!

This quickly resurrection of the dead GOP health care bill looks like it will go the way of the dodo…..McCain once again may be the guy with the final nail……

The latest Republican effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act may very well be dead after Sen. John McCain announced his opposition to it Friday, the AP reports. “I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal,” CNN quotes McCain as saying in a statement. “I believe we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats, and have not yet really tried.” This would be the second time McCain has put a nail in the coffin of Republican efforts to end ObamaCare.

McCain said he couldn’t vote for the Graham-Cassidy bill without a CBO score, which wouldn’t be available until later this month, to let him know “how much it will cost, how it will affect insurance premiums, and how many people will be helped or hurt by it.” Republicans could only afford to have two senators side with Democrats in opposition to the bill. Sen. Rand Paul was already opposed and Sen. Susan Collins was leaning that way. A recent poll found only 24% of Americans support the Graham-Cassidy bill and 50% disapprove of it, the Hill reports.

Back in 1989, before all the health care debacle of the Clintons and onto today, I sent an idea for health care to my representative, Gene Taylor, for his consideration.

Keep in mind this was in the days before any substantial work on a health care bill.
My Rep. did not have the courtesy to reply to my idea…..I would have excepted anything but instead he sent me a donation card for his next campaign….needless to say he lost all support from me.
Soon after this I started supporting the single payer system….a Medicare For All….if you like.
And I still think it is the best idea to get ALL Americans the health care they need and deserve.

On The Road To Single-Payer?

WE have been having the same debate for a half a century about health care in this country…..in all that time the one policy that made more4 sense than any of the others put forth was the single-payer plan or Medicare for all……

Sander has also been pushing the idea of a single payer all his years in Congress….with little enthusiasm shown by his colleagues….but is that about to change?

Bernie Sanders rolled out his vision to overhaul the health care system on Wednesday, one in which everybody would get their insurance from the government through Medicare instead of through their jobs or a private insurer. Sanders calls it the Medicare for All Act of 2017, but you’ll also hear phrases such as “single payer” and “universal health care” used to describe it. One key part missing: details on how to pay for it, though Sanders plans to release a separate paper on that, reports the Wall Street Journal. Coverage:

  • The basics: Per CNN, everybody gets a “Universal Medicare card,” which would be used to cover all health bills, from surgeries to dental care to substance abuse treatment. Co-payments would go away, and people would pay premiums based on their incomes, reports the AP. Private insurers would still exist, but for things such as elective plastic surgery or, sometimes, to act as middlemen between the government and hospitals or doctors.
  • A ‘right’: Sanders makes his case in an op-ed in the New York Times. “Guaranteeing health care as a right is important to the American people not just from a moral and financial perspective; it also happens to be what the majority of the American people want.”
  • ‘Single payer’: David Leonhardt of the New York Times has a Q&A on the fundamentals, including the basic question of what the term “single payer” means. In short, it “describes a system in which only one entity—the government—pays medical bills. If all Americans had Medicare rather than insurance through their jobs, it would be a single-payer system.” Vox says Sanders’ system is far more generous than single-payer plans in Canada and elsewhere.
  • The cost: This could cost hundreds of billions of dollars more per year, per the Journal. Details are yet to come, but Sanders envisions a progressive tax increase, with the wealthy paying more income, capital gains, and estate taxes, reports Newsweek. The senator says higher taxes for families would be offset by the fact that they no longer have to buy insurance. Still, in regard to single-payer systems, “no one—including Sanders—has truly reckoned with how to pay for whatever system they might support,” writes Mike Allen at Axios.
  • Litmus test? By all accounts, the chances of it passing a GOP-controlled Congress are precisely 0%. But it’s turning into a political litmus test of sorts for Democrats, reports the Washington Post. Sanders has the support of 15 Democratic senators so far, including all of those seen as potential 2020 presidential candidates. Co-sponsors include Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, Cory Booker, and Kamala Harris. But many prominent Democrats are not on board, at least yet, including Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and those in tough re-election fights, reports Politico.
  • The politics: No, this isn’t going to pass, “but here’s the big question,” writes Perry Bacon Jr. at FiveThirtyEight. “Is it going to become one of the central goals of the Democratic Party and a defining feature of the campaign of whichever Democrat is the party’s nominee in 2020?” As of now, this “seems very likely,” as the Democratic party seems to be gravitating to the left. But Bacon lays out the political and policy reasons why Democrats might avoid “becoming the party of single payer.”
  • Relishing the fight: Republicans see a chance to pounce. “We welcome the Democrats’ strategy of moving even further left,” says Katie Martin, spokesperson for the Senate GOP’s campaign organization, per the AP.

Let the fight begin!

If someone would spend more time checking out how single payer really works then the answer would be as easy as a straight up vote…..and this national nightmare could be over.