T-word

June 18, 2009

I love this title from NPR on the cost of Obama-care:

T-Word Looms Large In Health Care Cost Debate The T-word they are talking about is trillion.

Despite reassurances by President Obama and Democratic leaders that all new spending would be fully offset by other spending cuts or tax increases, Republicans immediately jumped on the T-word.

Now saying trillion is akin to swearing. Like N-word or B-word.

And it’s soap in the mouth for the head of the (nonpartisan) CBO :

According to our preliminary assessment, enacting the proposal would result in a net increase in federal budget deficits of about $1.0 trillion over the 2010-2019 period. When fully implemented, about 39 million individuals would obtain coverage through the new insurance exchanges. At the same time, the number of people who had coverage through an employer would decline by about 15 million (or roughly 10 percent), and coverage from other sources would fall by about 8 million, so the net decrease in the number of people uninsured would be about 16 million or 17 million

The full report here.

WTF? One t-word dollars (over ten years) and we will reduce the number of uninsured by only 17 m-word people? It works both ways right? F-word that.

Why not give one trillion dollars to the uninsured so they can buy their own insurance. The number of uninsured people in the US is roughly 48 million. If you split up the cost of this part of the Obama plan, an uninsured family of four would get over $8,000 a year to pay for insurance. If you take out the uninsured that already would be covered by Medicaid but haven’t applied, that number falls to 31 million. That means a family of four would get almost $13,000 a year. If you want to be harsh and subtract out illegal immigrants without health insurance, the amount rises to $17,000 a year. That should be enough to buy you some decent insurance.

dionne

I love(d) the reality TV show Jon and Kate plus Eight. I dunno. Part freak show, part cute kids…It was entertaining. Now their marriage is falling apart because of the show (or at least a contribution to its demise). That I don’t want to watch. Kate signed on for two more years but it looks like Jon is outta there. I know they were the ones who agreed to do the show but I now feel dirty for watching it.

Not quite the Dionne Quintuplets but still.

Shell game

May 12, 2009

My last post dealt with basic understanding of government proposals. I’m not surprised that more people don’t understand what is going on when I read stories like this: Report: Medicare fund eight years from insolvency

The opening line (emphasis mine):

Spurring new demands to overhaul the nation’s healthcare system, Medicare trustees announced Tuesday that the program’s biggest fund for serving the elderly would run out of money in just eight years.

Run out of money? Who are you kidding?

Someone needs to tell the LA Times that there isn’t a stash of money in the Medicare Trust Fund that will “run out” anytime soon (same goes for the Social Security Trust Fund). Both “trust funds” consist entirely of government bonds ie debt.

Here is the difference between now and when the trust fund “runs out of money”:

Now: Tax payments to Medicare by current taxpayers don’t cover cash payments to retirees. The balance due is paid by the general fund or borrowing.

After the trust fund is depleted: Tax payments to Medicare by current taxpayers don’t cover cash payments to retirees. The balance due is paid by the general fund or borrowing.

The trust funds are political fiction.

I agree with PETA

February 18, 2009

deadly-chimp

Shocking, I know, but this shit is beyond awful. There is no good reason for someone to own a nondomesticated animal. This goes for circuses too. No reason. Wild animals as entertainment is wrong. Suck it Siegfried and/or Roy.

body-heat

I’m all about recycling but this totally creeps me out.

A Swedish crematorium criticised for environmental pollution has come up with a novel way to save energy: it will heat buildings in the surrounding town from the crematorium furnaces.

If the new heating system proves to be successful in the crematorium’s own facilities, town officials have said they hope to tap into the new energy source by 2010.

(h/t James Taranto)

And since I’m already there:

(and you know, I don’t think that I’ve ever seen this movie. Let me guess; it ends badly.)

PETA’s latest adventure into bizarro world…

In an effort to discourage fishing, PETA wants to rename fish “sea kittens”. They seem to think that branding is the problem.

From PETA:

People don’t seem to like fish. They’re slithery and slimy, and they have eyes on either side of their pointy little heads—which is weird, to say the least…When your name can also be used as a verb that means driving a hook through your head, it’s time for a serious image makeover. And who could possibly want to put a hook through a sea kitten?

Sorry, calling fish sea kittens and dressing them up in big eyed cat drag won’t change my mind. I will continue to order my sea kitten salad sandwich on toast.

(the pic above is my personal sea kitteh that I created at the PETA site. Not sure what a sea kitteh is going to do in a litterbox or why he needs a water dish)

But were they fabulous?

October 15, 2008

I smell a trend (or is that smoke?)…

Flaming Pet Rat Starts Fire
(The rat’s owner had this to say: “I had a few beers before it happened, but nothing out of the ordinary”)

Flaming Squirrel Blamed For Sparking Grassfire

and speaking of questionable rodents: