08 May 2009

Konami code works in Facebook

Log onto Facebook.  Outside of any text boxes, type the Konami Code (↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A ENTER ) and you'll see a lens flare effect anytime you click, scroll, or type.

07 May 2009

Another One Bites The Dust....

It has been reported that LA Dodgers left-fielder Manny Ramirez has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for performance enhancing drugs.

...No wonder the Dodgers are 13-0 at home right now!!!

What does 1 in 7 really mean?

We've all heard the statistic: 1 in 7 Americans is not covered by health insurance. Then comes the inevitable follow up: and millions more are underinsured . . . The harder question, as we try to tackle this problem is, who are the uninsured? The Christian Science Monitor's patchwork nation blog divides America demographically into 11 community types by county. This week they're exploring who's being hit by the healthcare crisis the most?

Comprehensive healthcare and insurance reform has been tried countless times before, and the same pitfalls descend each time: one side says Tort Reform will solve the crisis the other says that only single payer health care will get anything done. In reality both sides are naïve. Medical malpractice is less than 1% of American health care spending and limiting the right to recover violates one of the basic tenants of Tort law, the right to be made whole, a tenant which is a basic foundation of civil justice long before America came to be. On the other hand single payer isn't going to happen, America hates socialism. Getting burnt to the ground in World War II changed Europe forever; market fundamentalism had no choice but to get out of the way when state-centered rebuilding (much of which funded by American dollars) brought Europe back to life. America has never faced such an identity crisis.

Nevertheless, healthcare reform isn't discretionary. We already have universal healthcare. We should recognize that we have the least efficient universal healthcare plan in the world, and maybe we can put some of that American ingenuity to work to change that. What am I talking about? Emergency Rooms; if you are experiencing a medical emergency, they can't turn you away. This means medical indigents don't get basic care when healthcare is cheap, but wait until a cough becomes pneumonia. And when they can't pay for expensive inpatient care, who pays for it? You and I already do. Sometimes its Medicaid, sometimes the Hospital itself absorbs the cost. Either way, the cost already comes back to you, in taxes or insurance premiums.

04 May 2009

Here's to you, Mrs. Robinson

The First Mother-in-Law is getting along well in her new role at her new residence.  New York Times' Rachel Swarns takes a look at Marian Robinson's life in the White House.

03 May 2009

What can Professor Obama tell us about the next Supreme Court Justice?

The New York times is running an article about President Obama's style as a Constitutional Law professor at the University of Chicago. By all accounts he appeared to be a pragmatist, institutional structuralist who scoffed at the naïvete of apolitical legal formalism. With a sudden vacancy at hand on the Supreme Court, what does this tell us about an unnamed Justice to be?

From the article:

Mr. Obama often expressed concern that “democracy could be dangerous,” Mr. Stone said, that the majority can be “unempathetic — that’s a word that Barack has used — about the concerns of outsiders and minorities.”

But when a student asked Mr. Obama to name the circuit judge he would most like to argue in front of, he named Richard Posner, a conservative. Judge Posner was smart enough to know when you were right, Mr. Obama told the class.