March 13th, 2014


A Cold Cold Day

As I determined last night, the roads truly sucked this morning -- snow on top of rain made slushy, slidey conditions and I wanted no part of it. And the cold has evolved. Only a 99.6°F temp, but my nose is a dripping, running faucet and I am sneezing all the time. I can't really see myself driving if I can't see or hold the steering wheel. Plus I hurt all over.

So, Skyped today and in all likelihood Skype tomorrow. You know, I almost never call in sick. Maybe half a dozen times in 22 years. I suppose if I'd been hospitalized a month earlier last year, I would have gotten better faster and maybe not had the setbacks I did. But I bulled through my classes, finals and grades before I let myself go to the doctor. The temps are dropping below zero tonight -- I am staying home. I have to consider myself a little more fragile than before, while I still work on recovering -- you don't just walk out of the hospital after what I went through.

Oh, and the cardiologist's office called this morning. The results from my monitoring last week were perfectly normal. As I predicted.

Mrs. Dr. Phil worked from home this morning, which turned out to be a minor issue because it was cutting into the DSL bandwidth for my Skype class.

And then there was updating the class webpages. All week it's been problematic. Sunday night I couldn't post midterm grades, had to do it at 6:55am on Monday. Today it took 11 hours to update.

The FTP program connects, but never delivers the directory or accepts transfers. This is true with both WS_FTP and the Microsoft command line FTP. The FTP programs work, because I've been able to update the mirror site I maintain at . Bunches of messages with the Help Desk. They finally said that they've seen this when the quotas weren't right. That sounds promising, as I've been adding those bulky MP3 lectures on days I Skype. But I had a quota of like 350MB and only used 125MB. Still, I finally upped the quota by about 200MB -- I had half a gig unallocated -- and eventually got updated. Something isn't doing its sums correctly, I wonder.

The winter storm warning for Kalamazoo had been extended to 3pm. This is Winter Storm Vulcan, I believe -- they're running out of the alphabet. Here things turned sunny and blue sky by noon.

Tuesday I was in the office and did get 9 of 10 or so people to come in and make up the Exam 2 they missed before break. I need to grade them, but my head hurts too much to do detail work like that.

Oh, and in the online staff newsletter they said that one should not call them breaks. It's recess. Spring Recess. To which I say Ph-hhhhbt! Who the hell calls it Spring Recess? Recess is what grade school kids do to run around the playground. It's Spring Break, pure and simple. Even if it's the end of February, start of March. All this in a semester which they renamed from Winter to Spring. Hence why I don't take this latest pronouncement seriously. Sounds to me like another middle manager trying to justify their existence. Sorry.

And for the record, I have had to put the Kindle down more than ten times just during this post to blow my nose. Yup. I hab a code in my nobe.

Dr. Phil

Well Played, Michigan, You Cowards

Friends –
I wanted to share with you a speech I intended on delivering to my Republican colleagues today as the offensive new "rape insurance" law they passed has now taken effect. Unfortunately, they adjourned the Senate today without giving me my constitutional right to give this statement, but while they may not have wanted to hear it, I want you to know exactly what I wanted to say to them.


I rise today to remind my Republican colleagues of what today is.

As of today, your rape insurance proposal is now the law of the land in Michigan.

Thanks to what every single one of you on that side of the aisle did, rape victims in Michigan that become pregnant from their attack will now be told by their doctor - and their private insurance company - that they’re on their own.

Yes, a victim of a sexual assault in Michigan will now have to face the reality that their Republican legislators -- those who decry government involvement in health care on a daily basis -- passed a law that does exactly that. Except it only applies to women, so apparently that doesn’t count.

And if taking away the rights of rape victims weren’t enough, thanks to what you did, Michigan women with wanted pregnancies who are told by their doctors that something has gone horribly wrong and their pregnancy must be terminated will be told that their government doesn’t think that’s necessary medical care.

They too will now face a reality that you have prevented their private insurance company from covering the exact care that’s needed, that their doctor recommends, and is in the best interest of their own health.

In short, it’s a whole new era of unequal health care you’ve created here today, an era in which women are treated as second class citizens and told their male dominated legislature and an extremist special interest group that funds their election campaigns know far better about the types of health care coverage they should have than their own doctor does.

So I have to ask, why aren’t you speaking out proudly about this today?

Is this not exactly what you wanted?

Is this not exactly what your vote was in favor of?

Or is it because, god forbid, you actually know what you did is wrong? That you know your vote that created this disgusting law was the absolute wrong vote to make? That if you could go back in time, maybe you’d put the health and the rights of your wives and your daughters ahead of what Right to Life told you to do that day?

I know that’s true for at least some of you.

Some of you told me yourselves in private shortly after the vote was taken that you wished you had the courage to vote against this disgusting bill.

You know who you are. I don’t need to name any names here today. But if you came to me that day seeking absolution for what you did, I’m here to tell you that on behalf of the millions of women and young girls you belittled that day and whose lives you’ve hurt as a result, the answer is no.

The people of Michigan asked you not to create this law. You didn’t listen.

My colleagues and I shared deeply personal stories - stories that none of us should have had to speak about publicly but felt compelled to in an effort to get you to actually think about what you were about to do.

We tried in vain to show you that your actions would have very real and very serious consequences on countless women throughout our state, including some of us right here in this very building.

But you didn’t care. You didn’t even have the courage to stand up and respond, or utter a single word out loud as to why you were about to pass this terrible law.

You instead sat silent, content to push your voting buttons and cash the campaign check you’d soon be receiving from those who were telling you to do this.

And so, here we are today. Rape insurance is now the law of the land, and not a single one of you wants to mark the occasion. So I’m doing it for you.

As this horrible law takes effect today, I want you to remember what you did.

The next time you read a story in the news about a woman being raped, remember that you turned your back on her and told her that she doesn’t deserve every available medical option that’s available to her.

When you hear of a woman facing a difficult pregnancy, one that may sadly end prematurely, remember that you told her that her health and well-being is less important than your ability to get the endorsement of a radical special-interest group.

And when women from across the state ask you why you would do something so offensive, remember that you had a chance to stand up for them and put their interests ahead of the absolute worst of what politics can be, and you chose not to.

I’m proud to know that I come here every day and fight to make Michigan a better place for my 2 daughters. But I’m disgusted to know that they’re now growing up in a state in which this kind of misogyny is now the law of the land.

I had to agree when I heard Rachel Maddow say this about our legislature just last night: “Over the last few years, Michigan state government has become way more insane than anyone nationally gives them credit for.”

Well, you may not be getting enough credit for it nationally, but across our state, the people know this exact kind of insanity happening here at their Capitol all too well.

I’m going to keep fighting on their behalf, and I can promise you that there are a whole lot of people out there ready to keep on fighting with me.

I haven’t forgotten what today means. Nor have the people of Michigan.

And you better believe we’re going to remember it November as well.

Gretchen Whitmer Signature

Gretchen Whitmer
Michigan Senate Democratic Leader

Dr. Phil