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Bird Flu Basics

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My wife and I have had a few discussions of late about the avian flu. With the recent genome mapping of the 1918 flu showing that it was an avian flu, and news of more birds being found with it, this has been a big topic in the media. Google’s blog has a great primer on the avian flu and what it might mean. This is informative reading, suggested for all.

Why I’m Glad We Have Private Health Care

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Calls continue every day, from people who don’t know any better, to nationalize America’s health care system. They believe, wrongly, that health care could be provided better and cheaper if it was freely available to all, and paid for through taxes.
The problem is, socialized medicine (referred to as “single payer” by its supporters) is a horrible system that actually results in universally unavailable health care, instead of the ease of access that we have now. Cuba’s hospitals, for the most part, aren’t up to the standards of America’s prisons. The national health care system in Britain is in collapse. Canada’s health care system only survives because it has a private option available, that of driving South to America for health care.
Indeed, in Canada, a person needing a MRI is forced to wait at least six months for the procedure. This is because MRI machines are expensive, and can break the budget of the national health care system if they provide them to even half of the nation’s hospitals. In America, MRI machines are in almost every hospital. There are MRI clinics, as well, which increases the availability of this particular test. Because we have a private health care system, we have easy access to this important test.
My son fell, recently. In the fall, he ruptured his spleen. Through a series of tests, it was determined that no surgery was necessary, and he was able to keep his spleen. One of these tests was the MRI. Using the MRI, the doctors could see that there was not a major amount of bleeding into the abdomen, and with a few days of close monitoring and blood tests, the boy was out of the hospital in no time, back to his fun.
What if we lived in Canada? Having to wait six months for an MRI in this situation would have meant NO MRI. Having no MRI would have meant an inability to accurately determine the level of bleeding. Undoubtedly, the result would have been a splenectomy. In this case, a splenectomy would have been unnecessary surgery.
Around these parts, unnecessary surgery is another way to say “bad health care.”
We have the single best health care system in the world. We have the best drug research and production in the world. We have easy access to quick and high-quality health care. Heck, the only people who are getting lesser quality health care in America are those relying on our ongoing “single payer” plans such as Medi-Care, Medi-Caid, government-run-hospitals, government-run clinics, and Veteran’s Administration. I do, at least, get to hear about improvements in the latter, since proponents of single-payer health care started losing power in government.
If we, like Canada, adopted socialized medicine, what border would we cross for quality medicine when the waiting lists started?

After 10 Years, Donald Herbert is Back

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During a house fire in December of 1995, firefighter Donald Herbert was buried in a collapse. He went without air for several minutes, and emerged from the fire brain damaged and in a coma. The coman lasted for two and a half months. Afterward, the brain damage kept him blind, with no awareness of his surroundings, and unable to communicate. For almost 10 years, he was in this state. Saturday, Donald Herbert suddenly said, “I want to talk to my wife.” What followed was a 14 hour conversation with his wife, four sons, family and friends.
Donald Herbert is back. Good thing his wife wasn’t trying to get rid of him, like Michael Schiavo did with his wife. How many people argued strongly that Terri Schiavo had to die? Good thing they didn’t know about Donald Herbert.
Hat tip to Decision ’08 on this one.

Being Overweight is NOT Such A Killer

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Finally, the Federal Government has come around and admitted something that many of us took for granted already. Being overweight is NOT the major killer that it has been held up to be. Being overweight is NOT the #2 killer in America. Being overweight has NOT killed nearly 400,000 people per year. Being overweight HAS been used as a people-control issue by the liberals for no good reason. This article gives the details.
Another big liberal issue defeated by the facts. It won’t matter, of course, because liberals have NEVER cared when the facts were against them. They’d rather watch a movie with some idiot doing something stupid to make a corporation look bad than actually understand what the facts are, anyway.
In related news, the Food Pyramid is being replaced. The one-size-fits-all pyramid we’ve all come to know and despise is being replaced by a veritable cornucopia of pyramids, so we can be completely confused.
I would like to argue that the 4 food groups were good enough. The Food Pyramid was finalized in 1992. Before this, we had the 4 food groups and 46% of the population was overweight. By 2000, 64% of the population was overweight. Now, with the food pyramid being replaced by 12 different food pyramids, you can expect that the percentage of overweight Americans should top 80% by 2010.
Overweight and ALIVE, that is.
[Update: Daly Thoughts has issued a challenge to bloggers to tell what THEY think of this new, confusing, hard to remember food pyramid swarm. Go check it out]

What if Michael Schiavo is Right?

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During the course of this Terri Schiavo case, I’ll admit to taking a side. I believe that to err on the side of life in this issue is more honorable than to err on the side of death. This has led me to the assumption, based on the evidence I have seen, that Terri Schiavo’s parents are in the right to fight for her to have access to food and basic care. Just for argument’s sake, though, let’s assume for a moment that the parents are wrong. Let’s take the position, for just one blog post, that Michael Schiavo is correct.

More: Read the rest of this entry…

This is the Health Care Democrats Want in the USA

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Democrats in the USA keep pushing for something they call “Single Payer Health Care.” What this means is that they want socialized medicine, in which the “single payer” is the government. Recently, I linked to images from the top hospital in Cuba. Now, we have this article about health care in Canada.
” A letter from the Moncton Hospital to a New Brunswick heart patient in need of an electrocardiogram said the appointment would be in three months. It added: “If the person named on this computer-generated letter is deceased, please accept our sincere apologies.”
That’s not all.
“Rather than leave daughter Emily in pain and a knee brace, the Ottawa family opted to pay $3,300 for arthroscopic surgery at a private clinic in Vancouver, with no help from the government.”
“The average Canadian family pays about 48 percent of its income in taxes each year, partly to fund the health care system. Rates vary from province to province, but Ontario, the most populous, spends roughly 40 percent of every tax dollar on health care, according to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.
“The system is going broke, says the federation, which campaigns for tax reform and private enterprise in health care.
“It calculates that at present rates, Ontario will be spending 85 percent of its budget on health care by 2035. “We can’t afford a state monopoly on health care anymore,” says Tasha Kheiriddin, Ontario director of the federation. “We have to examine private alternatives as well.”

Socialized medicine was a failure in the Soviet Union. It is a failure in Cuba. It is a failure in Canada, and it’s a failure in Britain. Of course, nothing energizes a Democrat like failure, so they want to institute socialized medicine in the USA as well.
Ask Terri Schiavo if she wants the Democrats in charge of her health care.
Hat tip INDC Journal.

Judge Refuses to Insert Terri Schiavo’s Feeding Tube

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Fox News is reporting that Judge James Whitmore of the US District Court has refused to have Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube reinserted pending the upcoming court case. Whittemore is a Clinton appointee.
An important point to understand here is that the feeding tube need not be inserted. The feeding tube isn’t what is being refused Terri by her husband. Food is. According to Dr. William Hammesfahr, a Nobel Prize nominee close to the case, “They are truly withholding food from a person who is awake, alert, and can eat and swallow.”
“Terri’s not that bad,” Hammesfahr said. “She is like a child with cerebral palsy. She can speak. At least when I saw her, she would speak very slowly. She would sort of form words, she would move her arms and legs at command. She could understand questions in English.”
This article was found via Blogs for Terri, one of the best sources for information about the case.

Starving the Dog – Starving the Wife

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If I decided to withhold food and water from my dog, and the government found out, I would be hauled away in handcuffs and charges would be filed. Michael Schiavo decides to do the same for his wife, and not even the animal rights activists will stand up for her, much less the judge in the case.

Terri Schiavo Story Far From Over

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Yesterday, the decision was made to withhold food and liquids from Terri Schiavo and start the slow, painful process of starving her to death. On hearing the news that she was to be killed, Terri cried out. Barbara Weller told Terri, “Just say you want to live.” To this, Terri yelled, “IIIIIII WAAAAAAAA” loud enough that it caused a police guard to remove everyone else from the room. Terri’s family, except for her “loving husband,” took this to mean she wants to live. Good news may be in the pipeline, though. The US Senate has reached a compromise that could restore Terri’s feeding. Of Congress’ intervention, Michael Schiavo said, “They should be ashamed of themselves.”
Maybe Congress SHOULD be ashamed for taking questionable actions in constitutional terms, but Michael Schiavo should be more ashamed of killing his wife, in my opinion.
As always, follow the story at Blogs for Terri, and Terri’s Fight.
[Update] President Bush will be returning to Washington, DC in order to be around for a quick signing of the bill.

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