Thursday, July 30, 2009

Health Care Plan...I don't think so...

What is going on with the Congress? How can a plan that penalizes individuals for having no insurance solve anything? And how can a plan that penalizes businesses for not covering their employees solve the heath care costs issues? So many businesses cannot afford to cover their employees, and people who cannot afford insurance sure cannot afford to have fines levied upon them for not having it! What the heck is going on anyway? Until we get health care out of the grip of insurance companies, we will have soaring costs as well as the cost of caring for uninsured. People say they don't want the government involved or "telling doctors how to treat patients" but right now that is what insurance companies have been doing for decades! Your medications, your surgeries, your elder care - all predicated on what the market will float for you. Until the government has a plan and it is administered as a single payer plan, we won't have any settlement of these issues. One idea would be to hire Blue Cross/Blue Shield to administer that plan across the nation. I have the feeling we won't get anything better, and it looks like all the plans I see going through Congress now would just make the whole ball of wax a lot worse! I wanted Obama to win the White House, but I had a bad feeling about winning the minds of America. Any plan that includes fines and penalties for people who don't have insurance now is just plain CRAZY.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

USPS Post Office closings?

The USPS wants to close many post offices around the country because "...[the post offices] are not intended to operate as monuments to a bygone era of postal customer interaction." (from Linn's Weekly Stamp News with a masthead of July 27, 2009. Well, now - as a postal customer, I was hoping that interaction wasn't relegated to a bygone era, and I was even hoping that service and customer oriented USPS services might come back! That bygone era was one in which service was better and the intricacies of the postal system were understood by all. Now you're lucky if the poor postal clerk can keep track of the various fees, regulations and postal rules when you have the temerity to mail something that isn't a regular envelope! So, if this were to mean the closure of many small town post offices, one might ask these questions: where are people going to get packages mailed, and purchase their postal needs? O.K., so I can buy stamps off the Internet, but here's a news bulletin - many people don't have the Internet! WOW. I know. Before this goes into effect, our legislators should certainly look into these plans. The Post Office would like to initiate these closures as soon as this October!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

After finishing Brazzaville Beach I have been power reading through some Dorothy Gilman novels I have piled up. Light reading, but she writes excellently. Tightrope Walker, about a young woman who buys an antique store and finds a note left by a desperate woman, and of course has to embark on a journey to solve the mystery of the woman and the note, was pretty fast reading. Dorothy's best books are the Mrs. Pollifax series, and the very best is her book Caravan which goes beyond the genre she normally stays within and develops into a fascinating cultural story of the Arabian peninsula and North Africa. I have a couple more of her books yet to read, but have picked up this copy of a Marion Chesney book and intend to read a few more of hers as well. This is a bonanza light reading summer!Of course Marion Chesney is M.C. Beaton, under which pseudonym she writes the Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth novels. It's all about keeping my Alan Furst books and my William Boyd books to a slower pace while they gather their strength to write more! I also have Gentlemen of the Road to read, by the incomparable Michael Chabon, and his non-fiction work, Maps and Legends. Powell's Books, Portland, Oregon, has this to say.