A New You

Ever considered to having a bit of work done?

Saturday and I need to decompress from the events of the past week……so to do so I will post on the growing trend of plastic surgery…….

I admit it I have always been a girl watcher……I read about a research project by plastic surgeons on the shape of breasts…..

Plastic surgeons have difficulty assessing the success of a breast surgery because, well, the beauty of a pair of breasts is in the eye of the beholder.

“Terms such as ‘beauty’ or ‘aesthetics’ are subjective and thus poorly defined and understood,” plastic surgeon Piotr Pietruski told Motherboard. “Due to this fact, both aesthetic and reconstructive breast surgery suffer from the lack of a standardized method of postoperative results analysis.”

That’s why Pietruski and his colleagues in Poland asked a hundred people to spend about a half hour each staring at naked breasts, all to gather data for a new study published in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

https://futurism.com/neoscope/surgeons-eye-tracking-tech-perfect-breasts

If it were not labelled “research” then it would be condemned as “soft porn”……some would say…..

We all have heard of tummy tucks, chin reconstruction, nose jobs and even butt implants and all the beauty extenders……and how sad when all that money spent goes terribly wrong…..

Model Courtney Barnes may have a little less room this Thanksgiving to stuff her turkey, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and dessert.

That’s because she has been told by doctors she may need to have her entire ass amputated, after “enhancing” it with illegal injections, according to the NY Post

Barnes, who is known as Miss Miami, said on the E! show “Botched” that she is desperate to get her body back after the injections. But Doctors told her that in order to fix her ass, it may have to be amputated. 

“Amputate the whole booty? I’m not doing that. No, I’m not doing that. I’m not amputating butts,” she responded. 

She had the illegal fillers injected when she was 22 years old and working as a dancer in a club. 

She said: “When I was in college I got a job dancing at a club. The first night, after really not making no money on the stage, there was a dancer who walked up to me and she told me that I needed some more booty if I wanted to make some more money. That’s when I found out about the injections that gave me my big booty problems.”

https://www.blacklistednews.com/article/75583/stuffed-woman-needs-her-ass-amputated-after-enhancing-it-with-illegal.html

We humans can find ways to spend our hard earned cash…..me?  I will stay as I am….a grumpy old man with sagging pieces parts of the bod.

If I must enhance my body then make me a cyborg.

In closing a “Blast From The Past”…..old farts will remember……

Be well, Be safe…….

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Thoughts On Medicare

FYI

So many people are either retiring or already having to suffer through retirement.

As a retired dude I am always concerned about my medical costs……for instance….I am a diabetic and my insulin cost me $400 if I were in Canada it would cost me $32…….so yeah I am always worried about the cost of my medical care.

The AARP, that seniors program that helps us get discounts and stuff, has been pushing this Medicare Advantage plan which will pick up the parts that Medicare does not pay……but is it all that or is it worth the money?

While the Democratic presidential candidates are debating full Medicare for All, giant insurance companies like UnitedHealthcare are advertising to the elderly in an attempt to lure them from Traditional Medicare (TM) to the so-called Medicare Advantage (MA)—a corporate plan that UnitedHealthcare promotes to turn a profit at the expense of enrollees.

Almost one third of all elderly over 65 are enrolled in these numerous, complex MA policies the government pays so much for monthly. The health insurance industry wants more enrollees as they continue to press Congress for more advantages.

Medical Disadvantage would be a more accurate name for the programs, as insurance companies push to corporatize all of Medicare, yet keep the name for the purposes of marketing, deception, and confusion.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/11/22/wake-aarp-message-seniors-medicare-disadvantage-corporate-trap

there is a bamboo stand that needs some attention.Since the weather has changed again in South Mississippi….I need to work a bit in the yard…..there is a bamboo stand that needs some attention….

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

More Random Thoughts

How many have seen the ads by some jock who’s head looks so small compared to his body hawking some pill that will put lead in your pencil…..like they would know…steroid use makes the “pencil” a useless appendage.

Okay off my soap box…..do these testosterone pills have any side effects?

In a new study, researchers found that testosterone therapy may double a man’s risk of suffering a potentially life-threatening blood clot.

They found that men had twice the risk for a deep vein blood clot if they’d been receiving testosterone during the previous six months.

The increased risk occurred whether or not a man had the low-testosterone condition known as hypogonadism, but appeared to be more pronounced in middle-aged men than in seniors

The research was conducted by a team at the University of Minnesota.

The “low-T” fad caused testosterone prescriptions to soar early in the 21st century, increasing more than 300% between 2001 and 2013, the study authors said in background notes.

Common testosterone supplements may increase men’s risk of blood clots

I love museums…all the history, the art, the artifacts…..it is a culotural adventure that everyone should participate in……but there is a new museum in London…..a Vagina Museum…..

An new exhibit opening in London this weekend is a glittery and garish homage to the hooha.

The Vagina Museum, built in Camden’s Stables Market, was made possible through a fundraising campaign, which collected almost $64,484 (£50,000) from more than 1,000 vag advocates.

Museum director Florence Schechter was inspired by a similar concept in Iceland: a museum all about the male member. “I discovered there was a penis museum in Iceland but no vagina equivalent anywhere else, so I decided to make one,” she told The Guardian.

https://nypost.com/2019/11/15/worlds-first-vagina-museum-tackles-female-body-taboos/

Speaking of museums….would you like to eat like a Babylonian?

What did a meal taste like nearly 4,000 years ago in ancient Babylonia? Pretty good, according to a team of international scholars who have deciphered and are re-creating what are considered to be the world’s oldest-known culinary recipes.

The recipes were inscribed on ancient Babylonian tablets that researchers have known about since early in the 20th century but that were not properly translated until the end of the century.

The tablets are part of the Yale Babylonian Collection at the Yale Peabody Museum. Three of the tablets date back to the Old Babylonian period, no later than 1730 B.C., according to Harvard University Assyriologist and cuneiform scholar Gojko Barjamovic, who put together the interdisciplinary team that is reviving these ancient recipes in the kitchen. A fourth tablet was produced about 1,000 years later. All four tablets are from the Mesopotamian region, in what is today Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2019/11/16/779930201/eat-like-the-ancient-babylonians-researchers-cook-up-nearly-4-000-year-old-recip

Speaking of the desert and sand…..is it possible that the world is running out of sand?

South African entrepreneur shot dead in September. Two Indian villagers killed in a gun battle in August. A Mexican environmental activist murdered in June.

Though separated by thousands of miles, these killings share an unlikely cause. They are some of the latest casualties in a growing wave of violence sparked by the struggle for one of the 21st Century’s most important, but least appreciated, commodities: ordinary sand.

Trivial though it may seem, sand is a critical ingredient of our lives. It is the primary raw material that modern cities are made from. The concrete used to construct shopping malls, offices, and apartment blocks, along with the asphalt we use to build roads connecting them, are largely just sand and gravel glued together. The glass in every window, windshield, and smart phone screen is made of melted-down sand. And even the silicon chips inside our phones and computers – along with virtually every other piece of electronic equipment in your home – are made from sand.

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20191108-why-the-world-is-running-out-of-sand

That is my randomness for this Saturday.

Have a day……Be well….Be safe

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Closing Thought–12Nov19

Yesterday we celebrated Veterans Day…and yet our vets are still fighting illnesses that they contracted while they fought our many wars…….

Us Vietnam vets had our Agent Orange….the Gulf War has its Gulf War Syndrome…..

Agent Orange gave exposed vets different types of cancer…..The Gulf War Syndrome has several symptoms among then are…..

  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a condition of long-term and severe fatigue that isn’t relieved by rest and is not directly caused by other conditions.
  • Fibromyalgia, a condition characterized by widespread muscle pain. Other symptoms may include insomnia, morning stiffness, headache, and memory problems.
  • Functional gastrointestinal disorders, a group of conditions marked by chronic or recurrent symptoms related to any part of the gastrointestinal tract. Examples include irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), functional dyspepsia, and functional abdominal pain syndrome.
  • Undiagnosed illnesses with symptoms that may include but are not limited to: abnormal weight loss, fatigue, cardiovascular disease, muscle and joint pain, headache, menstrual disorders, neurological and psychological problems, skin conditions, respiratory disorders, and sleep disturbances.

I bring up these illnesses from our past wars because of the findings in our present wars…..

Veterans saw a spike in urinary, prostate, liver and blood cancers during nearly two decades of war, and some military families now question whether their exposure to toxic environments is to blame, according to a McClatchy investigation.

McClatchy found that the rate of cancer treatments for veterans at Department of Veterans Affairs health care centers increased 61 percent for urinary cancers ⁠— which include bladder, kidney and ureter cancers ⁠— from fiscal year 2000 to 2018.

The rate of blood cancer treatments ⁠— lymphoma, myeloma and leukemia ⁠— rose 18 percent in the same period. Liver and pancreatic cancer treatment rates increased 96 percent and prostate cancer treatment rates increased 23 percent.

McClatchy analyzed all billing data for veteran visits involving a cancer diagnosis at VA medical facilities from fiscal year 2000 to 2018. The data was obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests. A more in-depth methodology of the review can be found here.

McClatchy selected that time frame to look at what impact the last two decades of war in Iraq and Afghanistan have had on veterans’ medical needs, even as the VA continues to treat veterans from past wars.

Veteran Marine Corps Sgt. Mark S. Villamac Ho joined the military after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and deployed in early 2003 to Al Numaniyah, Iraq, as an aircraft rescue firefighter.

In Iraq he was exposed to the firefighting foam the military is removing from service due to its links to cancer, and to the open-air trash-burning pits that more than 187,000 veterans have reported made them sick.

(McClatchy)
Each war seems to have its unique illnesses that are a result of the actions in these conflicts.
 
I Read, I Wrote, You Know
 
“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Warren And Medicare For All

All the major candidates have offered up their plans for health care….most want either a Medicare For All type of thing or they want to “reform” the ACA to make it better…..

I keep trying to stay ahead of all the BS swirling around the one idea that has the health industry running scared….https://lobotero.com/2019/10/28/can-we-afford-medicare-for-all/

One of the last major candidate to offer up her plan for a Medicare For All and how to pay for it is Warren…..and now we have her plan and let the criticism begin…..

Elizabeth Warren promised Friday to spend more than $20 trillion over the next decade to provide government-funded health care to every American without raising middle-class taxes—finally offering ideas about how to implement the massive “Medicare for All” program without taking a larger bite out of most Americans’ salaries. Her plan, posted online, is built on transferring to the government 98% of the $8.8 trillion she estimates that employers would spend on private insurance for their employees, per the AP. Remaining costs would be covered by “taxes on big corporations, Wall Street, and the top 1%—and enforcing the tax laws we have now,” she explains. “My Medicare for All plan gives everyone good insurance and cuts their health care costs to nearly zero—without increasing middle-class taxes one penny,” Warren says.

Companies with fewer than 50 employees would be exempted, and Warren said employers already offering health benefits reached under collective bargaining agreements will be allowed to reduce how much they send to federal coffers—provided they pass those savings on to employees. If the program fails to raise $8.8 trillion, Warren says she’d impose a supplemental contribution requirement for big companies “with extremely high executive compensation and stock buyback rates.” A critical question is how she’d slash the cost of her plan well below what experts have said it would take to implement it. Coming up with lower payment rates for hospitals and doctors that avoid disrupting the system would be a big challenge for a Warren administration and for Congress, where her plan could bog down.

Of course the critics are telling all sorts of consequences for her plan….but here is an industry whistleblower to explain it better…..

Now that we’ve seen Senator Elizabeth Warren’s plan to pay for Medicare for All without raising taxes on the middle class, let me tell you what is happening in Washington.

Forbes Tate, the Washington-based PR firm hired by big insurance, drug and hospital companies to create and run a front group called the Partnership for America’s Health Care Future, will already have convened an urgent conference call with its clients to go over Warren’s plan and begin implementing a strategy to attack it. A big part of that strategy will be to reach out to reliable industry allies to do the dirty work.

One of those allies is likely to be the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), a supposedly nonpartisan organization that issued a widely publicized report on October 28 insisting that, as Axios reported in its analysis of the report, “the middle class would be forced to shoulder some of the burden” of financing Medicare for All.

A health insurance whistleblower reveals how the industry will lie and attack Elizabeth Warren’s Medicare for All plan

Personally, It is time for a true health plan for ever person in this nation regardless of station in the society…..the industry has raped the people longer enough…..time for them to step up and be part of this country.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Sunday Medical News (FYI)

Did everyone “Fall Back” this Sunday?  (Time change)

As a retired old fart I am constantly worrying about my health as well as my wife’s…..one really bad problem and we could be ruined just like most of the American retired.

So yeah it is pretty damn important!

I read an article about the disparity of the American health care system…….

A research study on a commercial computer program used to allocate health care resources on predicted future health care costs provided a window on the ongoing pervasive impact of structural racism in our nation’s health care system.

Moreover, the research published in Science magazine reinforced how structural racism persists throughout society, including disparities in income, housing and other social and economic factors, and the impact that has on disparities in health.  

The study focuses on an algorithm used by health systems, insurers, and practitioners to predict which patients with complex medical needs should receive extra medical care. The ostensible goal is to slash costs by suggesting those patients receive “high risk management” at less expensive primary care levels.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/10/29/what-algorithms-tell-us-about-structural-racism-health-care

By now just about everybody has heard of the Dems proposal known as Medicare For All…..lots of pros and just as many cons……but those that have the most to lose, the health industry, the drug industry and those that have prostituted themselves to these industries, are the loudest opponents…..

But what does the economics say about the proposal?

Medicare for All would give most U.S. workers “the biggest take-home pay raise in a generation,” two economists from the University of California, Berkeley said Friday, countering one of the main insurance industry talking points against single-payer.

In an op-ed for The Guardian, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman directly challenged the claim that Medicare for All would “involve massive tax increases for the middle class,” an attack line centrist Democratic presidential candidates like former Vice President Joe Biden and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg have recently deployed against the popular proposal.

“Supporters of Medicare for All are right,” said Saez and Zucman, leading experts on income and wealth inequality. “Funding universal health insurance through taxes would lead to a large tax cut for the vast majority of workers.”

The two economists argued that health insurance premiums are effectively taxes taken out of workers’ paychecks and paid to for-profit insurance companies instead of the government.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/10/25/two-leading-economists-say-medicare-all-would-give-workers-biggest-take-home-pay

Last bit for this Sunday…..an update on the medical procedure known as a “fecal transplant”….I have informed my readers of this medical treatment in the past……https://lobotero.com/2019/06/16/all-those-transplants/

The rain has stopped and cooler temps and now the satsuma crop is in we need to start on the tangerine crop…..

Now there is more on this health issue….

What the New York Times calls “a frank and public act of self-examination” has emerged from a Boston medical center following the death of a fecal transplant patient after receiving contaminated stool. In an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital document the events leading up to the death of the 73-year-old blood cancer patient, which was first reported by the FDA in June. He and another patient, a 69-year-old with liver disease, had been given stool last spring that hosted drug-resistant E. coli bacteria, both samples from the same donor. The liver patient became seriously ill after his fecal microbiota transplant (aka FMT), which aims to restore a patient’s microbiome, or gut organisms. That man recovered, but the cancer patient was put on a breathing machine a week after his last FMT; he died two days later from a blood infection.

One big misstep: Although the hospital had tightened screening for stool donations starting in January based on new FDA guidelines (FMT isn’t FDA approved), older samples were kept, untested, in a freezer. “It wasn’t obvious to a lot of smart people here. We didn’t think to go back in time,” Dr. Elizabeth Hohmann, the article’s lead author, says, adding to STAT that “the prevalence of these organisms in healthy individuals is so low.” Hohmann adds that “20/20 hindsight” also made them realize that antibiotics given to the two patients before their fecal transplants may have helped the E. coli bacteria flourish. The Times notes that while the Boston hospital uses fecal transplant material produced in-house, most treatments in the US use material from the OpenBiome nonprofit stool bank, which has been screening for antibiotic-resistant E. coli since 2016, with no reported cases of “serious adverse events” from FMTs.

In closing….Eeeeewwwwwwww!

The rain has stopped and cooler temps and now the satsuma crop is in we need to start on the tangerine crop…..

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I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Thanx for the visits this past week…I appreciate those people that participate….have a great Sunday…..

Can We Afford Medicare For All?

One very popular, (at least with the voter, not so much with the industry)…I wrote a post a few months ago that got the ire of the health industry demanding that I explain how we will pay for the program……please check out the comments on that post……https://lobotero.com/2019/03/04/medicare-for-all/

So in that vane I have read a piece that will help explain how this can be paid for……

Health care is Americans’ number-one priority, based on recent polls, so it’s no wonder it’s been a hot topic in the Democratic primary.

Every candidate is offering a plan, ranging from Joe Biden’s Affordable Care Act upgrade to Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for all” that would abolish private health insurance. Even the president is joining the bandwagon and unveiled his own Medicare plan.

On the high end, a full-scale single-payer heath care system would come at a steep price: I estimate about US$40 trillion over 10 years.

There is, however, a simpler and less costly path toward single-payer, and it may have a better chance of success: simply strike the words “who are age 65 or over” from the 1965 amendments to the Social Security Act that created Medicare, which would mean virtually everyone would be covered by the existing Medicare program.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/10/07/how-us-could-afford-medicare-all

I say we can and must fund a policy of health care….I do not care what we call it just that it gets done and soon.

There is more….there is the LIE that hospitals will close with Medicare For All…..call this what it is manure (I was being polite)…….this lie was spread by a Dem candidate, Delaney…..

Delaney’s staff told us his talking point came from three sources. First: the fact Medicare pays hospitals on average 87 cents for every dollar of costs. Second: a federal report suggesting that “more than two-thirds of hospitals are losing money on Medicare inpatient services.” Third: Delaney, his staff said, “has been asking this question at the rural hospitals he has visited over the course of the campaign.”

Experts we spoke with offered a different take — mainly, that his evidence is not strong enough to support his claim. In addition, they told us that the potential impact of Medicare for All on hospitals would be much more nuanced — it is not at all clear that “every single hospital” would close, and while some would do worse, some might do better.

Delaney’s Debate Claim That ‘Medicare For All’ Will Shutter Hospitals Goes Overboard

I will be honest (more than the people that would lie this proposal out of existence) this Medicare For All is just a re-name of the old single payer…..and is it for all?

This “is an issue that affects, literally, every single person in this country,” he said. “Even putting the medical issues aside, it’s an economic issue. The way we finance health care promotes economic inequality.”

Medicare-for-all, in the purest sense, largely would replace private health insurance with a single, government-run program covering most everyone. It would be similar to traditional Medicare, the current federal health insurance program for most adults over 65 and young people meeting federal disability requirements, hence the name.

Sounds simple? It’s not.

https://www.propublica.org/article/medicare-for-all-is-not-medicare-and-not-really-for-all-so-what-does-it-actually-mean

Both sides of the issue have put so much stuff out there that this whole issue as become, to use my grandmother’s words, clear as mud.

We need a program that will help the population get the adequate health care they need and at a reasonable price……you will hear and read many versions of this please do some research and get the real story not some sanitized crap we always get.

On an up note—-a health industry insider is telling the tale of the profit system of the industry…..

Eleven years ago, after a moment of reckoning at a country health clinic in Tennessee, Potter left a high-ranking job as head of corporate communications at Cigna to tell the truth about the excesses and abuses of the health insurance industry. Since then, he has worked hard to spread the word, authoring two best-selling books, Nation on the Take (with Nick Penniman) and Deadly Spin, and founding the nonprofit investigative journalism site Tarbell.org, named after muckraking Progressive Era reporter Ida Tarbell.

Now, among all his other efforts, activist Wendell Potter has become president of Business for Medicare for All, the only national business organization working for single payer health insurance. This group of the economically pragmatic lends expertise and credibility to the cause of reform at a time when many, including some of those running for the Democratic presidential nomination, question the viability of single payer.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/09/30/healthcare-reformer-wendell-potter-profit-system-unraveling

You want to know why your medical bills are so high……ask Sen. Moscow Mitch…..

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised last month that he would block a drug pricing plan introduced in the House, calling it a “socialist” program that would do “damage to the healthcare system.”

Now, new analysis by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office has found that drug plan, put forward by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, would in fact save Medicare $345 billion over a decade.

The bulk of this savings would come from allowing the program to negotiate lower prices with pharmaceutical companies — something that is currently banned by law — to save money on the insulin and other expensive medications.

https://shareblue.com/mitch-mcconnell-nancy-pelosi-medicare-prescription-drug-pricing-plan-345-billion-congress/

So please stop blaming Obama for the higher prices and start blaming the slugs that are making the higher charges possible…..Moscow Mitch and his Ilk.

I await the industry hit man to make his presence known.

Until then a bill offered up by Speaker Pelosi to lower drug prices according to the CBO would save Medicare millions….

Democrats quickly touted the projected savings to show that their bill would effectively lower drug prices. 

https://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/465491-cbo-pelosi-bill-to-lower-drug-prices-saves-medicare-345-billion

But not to worry a Pharma friendly Dem, Rep. Neal, is crushing the lower drug pricing bill……like he is paid to do…..

Following the lead of pharma-friendly Rep. Richard Neal, Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee this week crushed several progressive amendments to a House drug pricing bill that would have expanded the number of medicines covered by the legislation and extended lower costs to the nation’s tens of millions of uninsured.

The Intercept reported Wednesday that Neal, a Massachusetts Democrat and chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, warned his Democratic colleagues against offering any amendments to the Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019 (H.R. 3) during the committee’s markup of the legislation on Tuesday.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/10/24/led-pharma-friendly-rep-richard-neal-democrats-crush-progressive-amendments

Not to worry…..if your meds are expensive then you probably will not get a break….the staus quo remains.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”