Thursday, December 18, 2014

Recent Executive Decisions

Just to take us back a little bit. I had little to say when President Obama struck a bargain with the Chinese about regulating greenhouses gasses. And I didn't say anything about the immigration conflict. And I had less to say about the budget agreement reached between the White House and Congress. And I won't express much of an opinion on normalizing relations on Cuba. And there's good reason. I agree with most of his actions.  

That is with the exception of the budget agreement. It pisses me off big time that in order to keep the Government going for one more year, President Obama traded away Dodd/Frank, and cut funding to the IRS and the EPA. 

Dodd/Frank is not perfect. Under this law, the too big to fail banks grew bigger. But without Dodd/Frank, the same banks will be allowed to continue selling the same faulty loans and mortgages that was a major cause of the financial crash of 2008. It was suppose to stop the Government from bailing out Wall Street again. 

It made me mad that the President agreed to cut to funding to the IRS, just simply because our infrastructure is deteriorating. How the hell can we raise bridges and fill in potholes with less money?  

And without money to the EPA, how do we put into effect those hard fought measures towards a greener society? Breathing clean air is not a luxury. 

The thing America's business leaders must figure out is that we will never run out of ways to make money as long as we continue to move forward.

Now for the other things President Obama did by executive orders? Ha! It was almost fun watching all those Republican heads explode. Obama keeps this up, he won't be remembered for all the good he did with the Affordable Care Act. He'll be remembered for all the good he did by executive order while he was a lame duck.

Saturday, November 22, 2014


Okay, I'm ready for a rant. All week long I listened to the GOP scream about how the President has shredded the Constitution and how he has declared himself king, just because he made an executive order concerning a bill that sat in the House but not voted on for nearly two years. And it's not that this bill didn't have support. The votes were there to pass it. It's because the votes were there to pass it, Boehner refused to schedule a vote. John McCain's reaction clinched it for me. "He should wait until the new House is seated and see what they do." Well, what the hell do you think they'll do? John Boehner is still Speaker. He held up the bill before. Do you think he might hold it up again?

Seriously though, I have a few questions. First off, just what Article or Amendment did the President break? Where is it? What does it say? Does this apply to all the violations he supposedly made with Obamacare? What are they? 

Do any of these idiots know the difference between an Article and an Amendment? Has any of these morons actually opened the Constitution since it was read before Congress opening day four years ago? Have they read it before or since? Did they understand it? Did they listen when it was read? Did they bother showing up the day it was read? 

So tell me. What Article or Amendment did the President break?

Another thing. This is a Country full of immigrants. So why are we so afraid? Are Mexican immigrants as stupid or as foul as Irish immigrants were? Or Italian? If we secure the borders, does that include our northern border with Canada? Or just the southern border with Mexico? Should we deport all 5 million illegals with family here? If so, who's going to do the icky jobs for little money that real Americans don't want? Who's going change your diapers or push your wheelchairs? 

Bengazi? Hah! These assholes spent millions of dollars investigating something they investigated eight times already only to come up with the same result. THERE WAS NO CONSPIRACY! So the real question here is, will another idiot like Darryll Issa investigate again? And will he come up with anything new? Let's not forget two things here. Number 1, the definition of insanity is repeating the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, like investigating Bengazi nine times, or calling for a vote to repeal Obamacare over 50 times. And Number 2, one in five people in this Country suffer from mental illness. In my humble opinion, a greater number than should hold seats in Congress.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Where Have All The Leaders Gone?

I have two bitches today. 

1. I have Democratic leanings and I reject a government of fear. Someone says that Barack Obama will send black helicopters in to steal all our weapons, people panic and buy more. That Ebola, which has killed one person within the United States, will wipe out our population. That we are going to be overrun by terrorists entering our Southern Border, or that the little children that crossed over during the summer are bringing disease, bugs and are the forerunner of another wave of illegal drugs, etc. (Let's not forget that the 9/11 culprits sneaked over our Northern border.) To be so afraid is a horrible way to live. 

That doesn't mean I don't believe there aren't things to fear. One of them is that I won't have enough money to live on as my working days dwindle into retirement. Another is that this country will wind up in another world war if we don't solve the problems in the Middle East. On the other hand there are people in this country who stand to earn billions on war materials while other Americans die if we go to war. 

Another thing is that when someone says something negative my fellow Democrats crumble like termite ridden wood. Now let me take a moment to give an example of that behavior. Ah, yeah, how about the election that happened yesterday? I'll start with Kentucky and Allison Lundergan Grimes. She was leading in her race against Mitch McConnell. Then someone asked her who she voted for in the last two presidential races. She proudly declared she backed Hilary Clinton, but said it was no one's business who she voted for. Her lead evaporated, and McConnell took off in the polls. 

Then again, Mary Landrieu in Louisiana tried to disengage from Barack Obama in her Senate race. She and Republican Bill Cassidy are stuck in a run off to take place in December. And there are a ton of others who followed the same tactic.

I find that behavior reprehensible. Barack Obama is not the most popular at the moment. Even so, it was under his administration that healthcare was reorganized. The Republicans say this is a bad thing and that they will repeal it at the first opportunity. Those who listen to Fox News are convinced that prices have gone up and that coverage is questionable. Those who have Obamacare, and use it, know what it is to have coverage for possibly the first time in their lives, simply because the price has gone down and the quality has gone up. What do Democratic politicians know about this? That the Republicans have found fault with it so something must be wrong. So they distanced themselves as far as they can away from Obamacare. By doing that, they've also dismissed the hunt for Bin Laden, and the reformation of Detroit, the fact that unemployment has gone down, the stock market has gone up, there has been only one death from Ebola, the rescue of Captain Phillips from Somalian pirates, etc. etc. etc.

Cowards. It shows no back bone at all, which only makes me wonder if there are any real leaders in the Democratic Party. I know there's few in the Republican Party just simply because very few dare register a differing opinion from party platform. Again, no backbone. If they can't think for themselves, then they can't govern either. 

2. I hate high definition TV. Why? Because everything is so close up you can see every little blemish. Last week I watched the season premier of Elementary. I lost track of the story because I was so involved in Lucy Liu's complexion. I've always thought of her as pretty, and then I see all her flaws. It occurred to me how many people have bad complexions. I haven't missed one pimple since. 

Friday, October 17, 2014

Ebola Czar

President Obama appointed an Ebola czar today. His name is Ron Klain and his job will be to coordinate efforts between agencies to meet the Ebola epidemic head on. It is an administration job, which he is suppose to be excellent at. He worked as head of staff for both Vice President Biden and Vice President Gore.

Of course the Republicans are angry. They think the President should have appointed someone with medical experience. Of course if he had, chances are the Republicans would have complained because the NRA didn't approve, or the candidate had his expertise in the wrong field, or more than likely because President Obama appointed him.

Today, October 17, more than two dozen Democrats have called for the appointment of Vivek Murthy to the position of Surgeon General. I can't see it happening. You see President Obama tried to appoint him into the position more than a year ago. Congress never voted on him. Why? Because the NRA doesn't like him. You see he had the nerve to say that gun violence is a health issue. You think?

In my humble opinion, we wouldn't need an Ebola czar if we had a Surgeon General. Doing without is as irresponsible as it was to cut funding going to the CDC for research and development. In my opinion, I don't see this appointment happening soon simply because Congress is made up of cowards. I don't see the Republicans doing anything but pointing fingers and blaming the President for everything they refuse to do, and I don't see the Democrats having enough backbone to stand up and make an issue out of this. The Republicans stand in lock step against the President, and the Democrats shut up and watch. This behavior is bringing the Country to its knees.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Okay, background information first: Ebola is a hemorrhagic illness; meaning it effects the circulatory system most. It is transferred from one person to another by contaminated bodily fluids, which according to experts is not as easy as it sounds. The incubation period is from three to 21 days when the suspected victim is to be quarantined.

The symptoms appear in stages. First off, during the first three days, the victim suffers from a low grade fever and flu symptoms. During that time, the virus grows in the victim's cells, and spreads to other cells. And it enters the victim's circulatory system. Crystals form and lodge against the walls of blood vessels. The virus turn those blood vessels from healthy, strong body parts to a crystalline substance similar to sugar that break easily. Now this is where the problems begin.

During the fourth, fifth and six days of the condition, the victim suffers from diarrhea and vomiting. And this is where most health care workers come across those dreaded bodily fluids that spread the virus. Keep in mind that at this stage, the victim should be quarantined and not in a position where the public is threatened with exposure to the virus.

During the seventh, eight and ninth days, the victim loses about 2 liters of bodily fluids a day. The blood vessels begin to leak internally. Blood might, but not always, flow from external orifices, like the nose, the mouth or even puncture wounds caused by I.V. needles, etc. Two things should be noted. First off, patients who die from Ebola usually succumb during this period, and it is because of dehydration. Secondly, caregivers are presented with two difficulties. First in order to keep the patient alive is to keep him hydrated, which is very hard considering the amount of fluids that patient loses during that period of time. Also, the patient gives off so much fluid, that waste piles add up quickly. Disposing of it is problematic. This is not something to be just dumped in a landfill and forgotten about. Again, because it is contaminated with bodily fluids, it has to be dealt with in such a way as not to expose the public.

So let's review the history of this strain within the United States. First off, two American health care workers and a TV cameraman have come home from West Africa for treatment. And it seems that all three were successfully treated.

Then Thomas Eric Duncan entered the United States en-route from Liberia, through Brussels, to the U.S. Duncan, a black man, had no insurance. After a few days in the U.S. he was taken to Dallas Presbyterian Hospital, complaining of a high fever and stomach cramps. He was given Tylenol and a antibiotic, and sent home. He did, by the way, alert his caregivers that he had just came from Liberia, which is one of three nations with massive Ebola outbreaks. He returned two days later with worse symptoms. He was admitted to Dallas Presbyterian and tested. It took two days for results. Where was Duncan during this two day period? He was mixed in with other patients.

It is no wonder that two of his caregivers came down with Ebola. One is at Dallas Presbyterian while the other has been transferred to Maryland.

Now the question is 'why were these nurses infected?' This is the United States. We supposedly have the best health care system in the world. One official commented that the first nurse must have violated protocol. She must have removed her mask or gloves prematurely. Because why else would she get it?

That sparked an angry response from the caregivers at Dallas Presbyterian. Deborah Burger of United Nurses Union said that many called her rather than speak out on the subject as they were warned not to or they could lose their jobs. She complained that the proper protocol is not in use at Dallas Presbyterian or most other American hospitals. Others have pointed out that there are two sets of protective gear, one is used in most American hospitals, and a second, more effective set, at the CDC in Atlanta. Apparently the gear worn by Dallas caregivers left their necks exposed. Nurses and others were told to wear tape there. Worse nurses and other medical personnel are not trained in treating this type of outbreak. Whereas the CDC uses a buddy system to ensure that all steps in the protocol are practiced, other hospitals simply are not aware of the procedures. The idea that the nurses who picked up the virus while working with Duncan because they didn't follow protocol is ridiculous because they didn't have a protocol available to follow.

Thomas Eric Duncan was left out with other patients for several hours during his initial visit, and again for several days while he was tested for Ebola. Someone said that the waste from his treatment gathered in a ceiling high pile. When concern was expressed to hospital officials that Duncan should be isolated, hospital officials resisted. In other words, the entire matter was a cluster f&@k.

There are many more people now under observation, both because of their exposure to the Ebola patients here and because they are returning from Africa. Where it's easy to say 'Let's blame the Africans for bringing it here', we must remember that the second nurse flew from Ohio to Texas within days of Duncan's death. She had a low grade fever at the time. Remember it was that low grade fever in Duncan that the Dallas staff didn't consider treating. Duncan and the two nurses have exposed a lot of people to the Ebola virus.

Of course the thing that gets me angry about this entire situation is the political responses. President Obama promises to keep lines of communication open to Americans concerned about the outbreak. That's a good thing.

There are two things he must do as well. Number one is to make sure, if by executive order or by act of Congress, that all hospitals are given the proper gear and that their staffs are trained properly.

Secondly, in order to aid communication, appoint a Surgeon General. We've been without one for over a year. Why? Because Congress refuses to vote on President Obama's candidate. You see the guy supports gun control so the NRA doesn't like him. And Obama suggested this guy. So you know it pisses me off further when I hear Senator McCain screaming that we need an Ebola czar. In my humble opinion, a Surgeon General would do a better job if the Republicans in Congress would vote the guy in.

The other thing that really pisses me off? There are Senators and Congressmen from both parties so afraid of this that they are demanding that we exclude incoming flights from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. That sounds like a great idea except that President Obama and several real experts feel that this would allow those exposed to get lost on a crowded planet.

Remember, the incubation period is 3 to twenty one days while the first three days of the illness limits the victim to low grade fevers and flu symptoms. That gives those infected in West Africa a long time to wander around, throughout Africa, Europe and Asia, while searching for another way into the U.S. and the supposedly the best medical system on earth. There would be virtually no way to track and isolate the people who were exposed along the way.

I can't wait to hear the right scream about Ebola victims sneaking into America from our 'porous' Southern border. They forget. The 9/11 hijackers came through Canada.

Alison Lundergan Grimes

I've had this blog sitting around and I used to use it. I erased most of the entries because I didn't want my views, some of which are extremely controversial putting a damper on my main blog, Blue Island Ghost Stories. I love telling stories. 

Anyway, I get worked up over politics, and again it occurs to me that I would lose readers if I continued ranting over facebook. So last night, while listening to Rachel Maddow expand on the subject of Ebola, I decided to move my rants here. If you don't like my politics, then don't read this. If you agree, let me know. Anyway, this is my last rant:

I feel another rant coming on. Well, actually it started last night while watching coverage over the Senatorial debate in Kentucky. Alison Lundergan Grimes is so frightened of the picture that Mitch McConnell is trying to paint of her as an Obama supporter, that she wouldn't admit to even supporting the President when he ran for office in 2008 and 2012. Asked about repealing Obamacare, called Kynect in Kentucky, McConnell said that this was just a web site, and that if he was able to have Obamacare repealed, the web site wouldn't be effected. And what was her response? Nothing. Not a God blessed thing. Never mind that 500,000 Kentuckians have insurance for the first time because of Obamacare, but if the Republicans finally do repeal it, the insurance is gone, and that web site means nothing.
No, I really don't worry about Kentucky politics, but I do worry about American politics. And why this race concerns me is that she is just another coward running for office who does not have the backbone to stand up for her constituents.
I am still pissed that these jackasses dropped everything and ran out of town rather than vote on whether they would back the President in sending bombing raids into Syria. They won't vote on it when they get back, but they might when the new Congress is seated. Maybe by that time they might figure out something else to blame Obama for.
President Obama is not always right. No one is always right. My anger with the Congress has more to do with their attitude. "If Obama wants it, then it must be wrong," is nothing but pure cowardice. Stand up and discuss your views. Tell us why Obama is wrong. Tell us what you think we should do.
No, instead of being honest and forthright, you have a coward like Ted Cruz threatening to shut down the Government again. Then one of them will stand in front of a memorial saying something like, "How could President Obama allow this memorial to be closed?" Again. Never mind the employees from every other government agency will be sitting on their rear ends praying for a way to pay their bills. Or even that we have a worldwide epidemic on our hands, and Congress has slashed the budget of CDC. Close them down and lets see how many Americans aren't treated for Ebola.
The subject of Ebola is another issue that just really pisses me off, but I'll save that rant for another day.
Okay, so President Obama has disappointed a lot of people. He at least is trying. Congress on the other hand is made up of cowards and ego maniacs. It's time to vote them out.