Archives For April 2011


Source Article:  Businesses turn to private exchange health insurance – USATODAY.com.

This is an interesting article about how some CEOs are giving up trying to figure this health insurance mess out and passing it on to their employees and pensioners. They just give them a set sum of money and basically hand them over to some former insurance executives for advice. In other words they are on their own. Here are people who are supposedly the cream of the crop in the business world who admit they can’t figure this stuff out. So, how are the their worker let alone their pensioners supposed to do that? This healthcare circus is just getting more ridiculous every year.

We in the U.S. take such pride in being the smartest of the smartest in the world. We boast that we are the only true innovators on the planet! But I kind of think we are in a gigantic bubble of illusion here, especially when it comes to healthcare. The rest of the world has long ago figured out that a single payer system, mostly maintained by their governments, is the only way to keep healthcare costs in line. They spend less and actually live longer than we do.  There are no other industrialized countries that spend even one-fourth of what we do per person for their citizens’ well being.

Come on guys, lets finally admit it that sometimes others outside the U.S. have it more right than we do. Let’s get on the single payer system and get off this constantly increasing healthcare merry-go-round. The employer based healthcare system is totally out of control; let’s replace it with something the rest of the world knows is better.

But I’m just a simple guy so what do I know….


Enough for Everyone

April 29, 2011

I must admit that I am becoming a big fan of Anthony Bourdain and his show No Reservations. Anthony is a TV celebrity/chef/author who travels to other countries to try to get a real feel for their culture and also their food. He doesn’t spend any time in the touristy places; he goes and meets the real people. Tony is kind of like the guy I would have liked to have been more like in earlier life. He doesn’t hold back much and he is kind of raw on the edges. Actually he is very raw on the edges! :)  One of the things I admire most about Tony is that he doesn’t disrespect any of his guest. Even though he is a rough guy he is tender in his relationships with others.

The episode I just got finished watching was about Sweden. I was a serious tennis amateur when Bjorn Borg was the number one tennis star of the world.  And of course I always had a fascination with those blond Swedish girls.  Until this episode that is about all the exposure I had to that country.  One thing that entranced me about this episode was that the swedes have a saying that translates to “Enough for Everyone”. This saying seems to be very entrenched in their culture. They aren’t into the “WE ARE NUMBER ONE” mentality that is so prevalent in the U.S. and some other countries. Looking back now that is probably one of the reasons Borg was so calm even during his tennis events.   The Swedes just don’t have the paranoid desire to always be number one in anything. They think there is room for everyone at the table.

The Radical Right probably call Sweden communists (that seems to be one of their favorite slams) because they have so much socialism in their government. They dare to have universal healthcare for all their citizens and also free education through college. There are not a lot of poor people in Sweden because everyone has a change to make something of themselves. Those who follow my other blog (www.redletterliving.org) know that I am a follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus taught us that we are all to be our brother’s keeper and if we want to be first we must humble ourselves into being last. The Swedes, even though they might not know it, seem to align to those teachings.  Our bravado in the U.S. sometimes prevents us from being as much as we could be.

But What do I know..

Indiana – 2011

April 28, 2011

While most of the barns in our portfolio were taken on one of our many road trips this one is just a few miles from our home. We pass it several times a week.  The backside of the barn sustained considerable damage in the Spring storms. I hope it stay up.

Pre April 27 – (Republicans) –  Obama is not a citizen so he is an invalid president

Post April 27 – (Republicans) – Why is Obama wasting his time producing a birth certificate; he should be creating jobs!!

Please stop the spin cycle – I was dry months ago….

GOP pivots on ‘birther’ questions, blames Obama for media attention

Ok, here it is. Now that President Obama finally tried to put the birther issue to rest the radical right in the Republican party are hitting on him for wasting time with providing his birth certificate! They say he should be producing more jobs instead of settling this issue. It is just totally amazing to me how they will spin anything the President does to make him wrong.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Here is what I think of this:

This is so hilarious that I simple can’t write any more. I am truly dumbfounded by idiocy of this latest RR spin.

But what do I know.

GOP pivots on ‘birther’ questions, blames Obama for media attention – The Washington Post.

We visited Montpelier in Virginia a few weeks ago. James Madison is one of my heroes so it was good to make this connection with him.