November 26th, 2007


The Dumbest Comparison

Heard On NPR This Morning

I've been trying to keep this blog free of political commentary, especially since this Presidential Campaign season started way too early and the states (including Michigan) are being idiotic is rushing to wrap up the primaries before their time, but...

On NPR this morning I heard John McCain talking about his opposition to a "mandate" for health care and he said it's the same thing as his supporting more help for going to college, but he isn't going to "mandate" that everyone go to college.


It's Not New News

Turns out this must've been in McCain's stump speech for awhile, since when I Googled "john mccain health college", the first hit was to this FOX-News article from the beginning of the month.

Friday, November 02, 2007

WASHINGTON — John McCain underscored his opposition to mandatory health insurance Wednesday at a health care forum in Washington, D.C., saying the coverage should be a matter of choice.

"I think that one of our goals should be that every American own their own home, but I'm not going to mandate that every American own their own home," the Republican presidential candidate told the crowd at a forum sponsored by hospital trade group the Kaiser Family Foundation. " I think that every American should have ... an affordable college education. But I'm not going to mandate that every American go to college. I feel the same way about health care."

No, No, NO!

It's not the same thing at all, John. While it is true that two of the so-called industries which have had costs rising above the inflation rate for decades are college and health care... No one gets hit by a bus and says, "Oh, I should go to college now." No one picks up a college major from a passing sick person. Sure, not everyone NEEDS health care. But the problem is, you don't know WHEN you are going to need it.

People CHOOSE to go to college. People DON'T CHOOSE to find themselves in a hospital or doctor's office.

And home ownership? Puh-lease! It's not like the choices are home ownership or... living under a bush in the park.

I Can't Believe An Educated Person Would Say This

Because we are in something of a health care crisis. Forget the truly poor -- because there are programs already which may be able to help. Forget the elderly -- same reason. No, the big problem is that there are people who are working, who are scared to death that they might get sick. There are people who can't afford to get sick. There are people right now in today's America, who are in effect slaves to their employer, because they cannot afford to leave their current job or location. There are employers who are able to tell a candidate, "No we don't want to hire you," when what they are really saying is, "We don't want to pay for your or your family's health bills." Does the phrase "pre-existing condition" mean anything?

There may be many wonderful different ways that Republicans or Democrats might help or "fix" health care. But don't tell me that having a mandate for full health care coverage for all would be "just like" telling everyone to go to college. I'm not buying that load of crap.

Dr. Phil
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First Time Ever

My Dog Ate The Homework

A week ago was the deadline for my two classes to turn in their Topic 1 Science Literacy Book Reports. On Tuesday a student came by with a note from the doctor -- for their computer. Actually it was a receipt from the campus tech support people saying the computer didn't work and they were working on it. Which is why the student hadn't been able to print out their paper and get it into the office by 5pm.

I've had lots of people blame their computers, and some have shown up with faded or misprinted printouts -- especially from using the campus computer center PC's. The assignment says that if you have problems printing, to write "Printer Problems" on the paper, to distinguish between those who tried to follow the rules and those who don't care about the requirements for font size, spacing, margins, page count. But this was the first time someone actually brought in proper documentation of a malfunction. I told the student to turn in the paper when they could, with a copy of the "doctor's note" stapled to it. It came in this afternoon.

One Other Weirdness

The year I taught at Grand Valley, my second year of teaching, I had these two guys in my class show up lugging this giant "thing". It was one of those real word processors -- a dedicated unit with a small screen and a built-in printer. The old ribbon they'd been trying to eke out because they were cheap had shredded apart, so one guy brought in the unit and the other showed up with a new ribbon a while later. And we pulled out the shredded ribbon and installed the new one and they finally got their paper turned in.

Occasionally deadlines bring out the best in people. (grin)

Dr. Phil
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