Monday, June 9, 2008

Monday Thoughts

It's Monday here in paradise, where we're expecting cool weather with rain. Ok, it's June in paradise, meaning normal. We don't get summer until the week after July 4th, and it's usually fades after Labor Day, sometimes quickly and sometimes we get lucky with an indian summer. But that's ahead of us. June is usually cool with chances of cloudy and rainy days, but we also get really nice partly cloudy days with warm (70's) temperatures too, so it's always a wake up hope it's the latter.

Ok, the news.

Hillary Clinton. Well, she really didn't concede, only saying she's "suspending" her campaign. She can't give Obama the right to say the majority of democrats voted him their candidate for President, not her. She should know better but then I didn't expect it from her either. She's a tough fighter, and few of them are nice in defeat. And all the speeches she makes about or with Obama and all the speeches urging her supporters to support Obama won't change this concession speech.

And in spite of the pundits I don't want to see her as Vice President. She would make, in my view, a better Secretary of State or a Senator. She's not VP material to support the President's agenda and policies. She likes to be in control, and the other roles are far better for her.

Did you read the article that two Harvard professor-psychiatrist who have been selling the role of drugs in children for several conditions have been receiving money from the drug companies for those very same conditions. And not a little money, $1.6 million for one and $1.0 million for the other (2000-2007). And they never reported this income to the university or the medical community. They hide their affliation to the drug companies to support their products.

This isn't new but is for Harvard and for that kind of money as professors teaching and practicing childrens' healthcare and overseeing drug trials. And no one has said they violated any ethic policies or rules too.

Maybe the drug companies can give us money to use the drug(s) as a trial?

Along that same vein. A VA doctor has been advocating her department staff at a Texas VA hospital stop diagnosing PTSD because it's costing the military too much. That's because veterans who aren't fully diagnosed with severe PTSD aren't entitled to any monetary benefits, only those who are severe or worse get disability payments for the condition.

And we thought the veterans and soldiers back from Iraq and Afghanistan were getting the best care? Not. Too many stories have been in the news from healthcare, denial of benefits and care after discharge, and hospital conditions.

Why did it take nearly 7 years to bring five terrorists to trial for 9/11? And the one "master mind" is known to exaggerate his role in everything he has done in the past. Even the CIA doesn't fully trust him or the information he has given them. He wants to be a martyr and we want a villian, and I'm betting we'll oblige him, even if it recruits more terrorists.

But somehow I'd rather see the trials in a civilian court than a military tribunal so everyone,in the US and the world can see our system of justice works. I'm betting they'll be convicted and sentenced to death. The trial is a simply a publicity front and it took them the whole time to accumulate a lot of secret but circumstantial evidence, just enough except we can't actually see the evidence, to convict them in front of a panel of officers.

Understand I'm not on their side by any measure. I would just like to see an open trial so showcase our justice than a secret one few will ever know the truth and always raise the issue if it wasn't really intended to be a trial but a means to an end.

Did you hear the former Secretary of Health and Human Services company got a $11 million contract from the same agency? It's a contract to assess and counsel 9/11 victims, the same victims the agency was supposed to be doing with its own money and staff. But they suddenly decided to contract the work, and it was just so convenient to use the no-bid rules to hire this company as they had the experience to take over the agency's work.

Hmmm...., me thinks something is Monday morning fish.

Did you know the world is running out of guano? That's bird poop, essential in fertilizer. The global companies have already decimated many island nations, after all we started mining guano since the early 1800's, and now they're focused on Peru's wayward islands. Peru estimates they have 10-20 years of guano left on the islands to harvest, before the companies move on, except they're running out of islands and on-shore areas.

This one is cute. Ok, not cute, but scientific. Did you know how you vote may be in your genes? Or at least the intention or need to vote, even when the outcome is known or obvious. It's one of those statistical correlations scientist make with the data. But it is interesting.

Why is Karl Rove still around?

Did you know that fewer housing complaints are being decided let alone settled? In 1999 it was an even split between the number of complaints dismissed and the number settled. In 2008 it's 70% dismissed and 30% settled. This wasn't a slow change either, but a sharp drop to the numbers in 2001, timely huh?, and steady from 2002-2008.

Gee, why is this not news but really news? Our government at work, but not for the people, again.

Ok, enough for a Monday. Some good thoughts?

For me, July 1st. It's the day Washington State only allows hands-free cellphones while driving. I hate cellphone and cellphone drivers (yes, I have one too). And now I can honk at other drivers to get off their cellphone if I see them holding one to their ear. Yippee...

How about a photo blog? If you think your life is bad, read and see Andrea Bruce's Unseen Iraq blog.

Parting jesture? This photo is one of my favorites. The simplicity of an image tells a whole story, and the color brings it alive. What else do you need to know?

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