Archives for the month of: May, 2014

Is there something fundamentally wrong with US hospitals?

First, a report comes out that US hospital prices are arbitrary and confoundingly high, then it’s discovered VA hospitals have confoundingly high wait times. In regards to prices, hospitals tend to play a shell-game and stick it to the working poor and lower middle class much like the mortgage industry did not long ago. That’s unethical of hospitals. Not only did the VA hospitals fail to meet demand, they lied about it and covered it up. Also unethical and probably illegal.

I feel it’s not off the mark to say that we need to take a close look at how hospitals are run, managed, financed, and how they pay salaries and bonuses to employees and administrators, as something seems to have gone awry in the mission hospitals have to provide healthcare to patients in an ethical manner.

Where are these hospital’s ethics and sense of purpose? Are they only concerned about money these days? Are they simply lazy? Why do they feel they aren’t accountable?

Maybe hospitals and hospital systems need to be decentralized? The idea of combining hospitals into hospital groups was to take advantage of economies of scale to lower costs. That didn’t happen. Maybe instead of having a handful of high-rise hospitals in a city or region, there should be dozens of much smaller hospitals in the same area that would be forced to compete with one another? Maybe a smaller scale would force these hospitals to be more patient-centric and to be more concerned with quality of care rather than quantity?¬†You know, operating more in a boutique manner than in a factory manner? Perhaps a Walmart, box-store concept to hospital care simply doesn’t work? Perhaps the doctor-patient relationship needs to occur in a more intimate setting? It would seem that hospital epidemics of MERS, staph, and pneumonia could be reduced with more and smaller hospitals in a given area. The consolidated, centralized, high-rise concept did not work for public housing, perhaps it simply cannot work for hospitals as well?

So then have hospitals hit the too-big-to-fail wall?? You know that wall that financial institutions hit when they became so big and powerful and their staff so well-paid that they totally lost their focus of their position in society and in their core mission of what they provided to their clients? Maybe there’s some kind of sociological law about the size of an institution: that at a certain point an institution becomes so large that it loses its way and becomes disconnected, that staff members get stuck in a small-cog-in-a-large-machine syndrome where everyone loses sight of the mission and assumes somebody else has their eye on and is responsible for the big picture?


*THE WORST MOVIE EVER MADE* My $15 called and made fun of me. How do you fuck up a movie where Scarlett Johansson plays an alien sent to earth to have sex with random strangers? Part of the answer: set it in Scotland. Entire scenes of this movie were shot with the lens cap on. At certain points you’re left wondering if the movie is being streamed off Pandora. But the good news is your sense of smell and hearing will be enhanced during this movie. The bad news is that it happens inside a movie theater. I sure hope no one else ever tries to make an artistic statement by underexposing the film by twelve f-stops. Even the world-class score did not save this film. Awesome trailer though, it really played up the sex and motorcycles; expect it to make a big splash next awards season!


I’m rethinking my views on requiring voters to have a driver’s license as ID to vote. Not only do I now feel it should be required, but I feel only those with a motorcycle endorsement should be allowed to vote.

And I just heard that in Mississippi there’s a bill pending requiring voters to not only have a driver’s license, but that the license must be a CDL Class A “Big Rig” license. Well played MS!

Only letting bikers and truckers vote will get the money out of politics. And potholes will be a thing of the past.

Win-win, done & done.

A SEAL team to #BringBackOurGirls? It will take A LOT more than that. Assuming the girls are all in one place (which probably isn’t the case) there are 276 of them. That will take close to a thousand troops and support personnel at least. And you’ll need a C130 or two or similar large aircraft to extract the girls alone. This will be a major military operation. The logistical requirements here are huge: a platoon of SEALs and a few Blackhawks isn’t enough do the job.

This doesn’t mean I am against a US mission to get the the girls, I am all for it.

But I am shocked how the so-called experts, the TV journalists and pundits, have radically underestimated the scope of the mission. “Why can’t we just send in some SEALs and rescue these girls like we did with Capt. Phillips or with the raid that killed bin Lauden?” I’ve heard on more than one news outlet. Apples and Oranges. Bin Laden was one man, Capt. Phillips also one man. An operation to extract 276 people from an unknown amount of armed captors will be many times larger than those.

If someone told you 2+2=22 you’d tell them they were wrong wouldn’t you?

Even if they sincerely and passionately believed it, you’d still tell them it was wrong, no? If they explained their thinking on how combining a 2 with another 2 gives them 22 and that it makes perfect sense to them, you’d give them a short lesson on how addition works, how a 2 is a symbol, that it’s representational of a numerical value and has meaning beyond the mere character as written. You’d explain to this person how 2+2=4. You’d try to get them to see the science, the logic of it, of how their definition of 2, their assumption of 2, was wrong.

Now if this person, after listening to the explanation of how 2+2=4, continued to say they believed 2+2=22, and then went on to say that you were in fact wrong, and not them, because when you add “what” and “ever” you get “whatever” so thus 2+2=22 what would you do next? You might tell them that they didn’t understand the basic concepts of math, and that they were using a technique of language within the realm of math, and that by believing 2+2=22 they were not qualified to hold an intelligent discussion about math or to teach math to others, no?

Yet those who say equally ridiculous things like 2+2=22 in other realms like economics, life science, climate science and sociology, their voices are getting louder and louder.

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