Monday, August 31, 2009

Visit cove.

Yesterday my husband and I attended this film and want to share the word. Japan has a news blackout on the evil practices in the town of Taiji, where more than 20000 dolphins are slaughtered each year. The cove that gives this film its name is red with the blood of these sentient, intelligent creatures when the fishermen slaughter them. Japanese citizens don't know about this. They don't know the whale meat they buy is actually dolphin meat with 2000 ppm of mercury in it. So it is not just for the sake of the dolphins that the slaughter must stop. Also, it is for the health of Japanese citizens. (Mercury is extremely toxic to us!)

We were lucky this film came to our town. (Sometimes I am surprised by the good UNmainstream films our local theater presents.) Maybe you can see the film. Even if you can't, you can take a few simple steps to help stop the slaughter of dolphins, and you can do it by going to cove. Please do it.

Peace, y'all


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A few thoughts on the health care "debate"

Health care is important. I believe good health is the birthright of every human being.

I am a person of faith and I believe our current system is broken. We need a radically different approach, and I think that means a single-payer system.

Insurance companies add layers of complexity and do ration care. They lobby Congress and no doubt give them lots of information (and meals, etc) on how important they are and what good they do. Understandably, they want to maximize their profits, and exclude sick people (pre-existing conditions).

Drug companies spend thousands on advertising to create demand for their products. And they lobby. This drives up the price of our medicines. This bothers me.

My nephew and his family live in New Zealand, which has socialized medicine. They are happy with it. For urgent care they get what they need, and when they need it. For less urgent care, they do wait a bit, but not to harm their health. If they were wealthier, they could jet somewhere else as medical tourists, just as wealthy Americans can do now.

I am a “have.” I have good benefits and good health. I still suffer from the system’s inefficiency. I despise filling out forms every time I walk into any doctor’s office, and being interrupted as I write the stuff down by health care providers asking me for the same information—which I sent in to the hospital in advance, by the way.

And it hurts me to know 47 million Americans are without insurance and good care. They have fewer choices. They don’t get preventive care. They must skip meals or skip medications—a draconian choice. They fill our hospitals’ emergency rooms, which drives up costs for the rest of us.

Even as a “have,” I am unhappy with the status quo and want to see Congress step up and deal with the tough questions. I want them to represent the citizens of their districts, not the lobbyists for insurance companies and drug companies.

Peace, y'all