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Another reason we need healthcare reform

Increased Co-Payments for Doctor Visits Boost Health-Care Costs for Seniors

ScienceDaily (Jan. 27, 2010) — For years many health experts believed that increasing insurance co-payments for routine doctor visits helped control costs. Patients faced with the higher price tag, they theorized, would simply cut back unnecessary visits, saving themselves and insurers money.

Brown University researchers now believe that the practice of increasing co-payments for outpatient visits -- at least for senior citizens -- may actually make care far more expensive. They determined that patients faced with higher co-payments did cut back on their doctor visits. But those same elderly patients ultimately required expensive hospital care because their illnesses worsened.

CoLOSSIS: the Pantex Project

Colossus Poster

Must be somebody's idea of a joke.

Scientists Develop New CT Scanner to Image Nuclear Weapon Components

ScienceDaily (Jan. 26, 2010) — The U.S. Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has announced that it recently completed the installation and successful startup of a new surveillance diagnostic tool that is capable of detecting aging defects on critical components in the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile.

Why not the vote?

Leading Cause of Medical Evacuation out of War Zones: It's Not Combat Injury

ScienceDaily (Jan. 23, 2010) — The most common reasons for medical evacuation of military personnel from war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years have been fractures, tendonitis and other musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders, not combat injuries, according to results of a Johns Hopkins study published January 22 in The Lancet.

"Most people think that in a war, getting shot is the leading cause of medical evacuation, but it almost never is," says study leader Steven P. Cohen, M.D., associate professor of anesthesiology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserves. "As in the past, disease and non-battle-related injuries continue to be the major sources of service-member attrition and that's not likely to change. It's likely to get worse."

Mind Reading, Brain Fingerprinting and the Law

ScienceDaily (Jan. 24, 2010) — What if a jury could decide a man's guilt through mind reading? What if reading a defendant's memory could betray their guilt? And what constitutes 'intent' to commit murder? These are just some of the issues debated and reviewed in the inaugural issue of WIREs Cognitive Science, the latest interdisciplinary project from Wiley-Blackwell, which for registered institutions will be free for the first two years.

In the article "Neurolaw," in the inaugural issue of WIREs Cognitive Science, co-authors Walter Sinnott-Armstrong and Annabelle Belcher assess the potential for the latest cognitive science research to revolutionize the legal system.

US Security Company Offers to Perform "High Threat Terminations" and to Confront "Worker Unrest" in Haiti

Monday 18 January 2010
by: Jeremy Scahill | Rebel Reports

We saw this type of Iraq-style disaster profiteering in New Orleans and you can expect to see a lot more of this in Haiti over the coming days, weeks and months. Private security companies are seeing big dollar signs in Haiti thanks in no small part to the media hype about “looters.” After Katrina, the number of private security companies registered (and unregistered) multiplied overnight. Banks, wealthy individuals, the US government all hired private security. I even encountered Israeli mercenaries operating an armed check-point outside of an elite gated community in New Orleans. They worked for a company called Instinctive Shooting International. (That is not a joke).

Big Tobacco Still At It

Tobacco Company Helped Shape European Policy System Favoring Corporate Profits Over Public Health, Study Finds

ScienceDaily (Jan. 12, 2010) — British American Tobacco (BAT), the world's second largest tobacco transnational, strategically influenced the European Union's framework for evaluating policy options, leading to the acceptance of an agenda which emphasizes business interests over public health, according to a study published in PLoS Medicine.

Happy Life Years 2000-2009

For those interested in the numbers, the World Database of Happiness ranks 148 nations and covers more than 95% of the world's population.

See how things stood during the Bush years.

1. Costa Rica - 66.7, 2. Iceland - 66.4, 3. Denmark - 65.0, 4. Switzerland - 65.0, 5. Canada - 64.0, 6. Australia - 62.9, 7. Sweden - 62.8, 8. Norway - 62.4, 9. Finland - 62.3, 10. Ireland - 60.9, 11. Luxembourg - 60.7, 12. Netherlands - 60.6, 13. Austria - 60.1, 14. New Zealand 59.7, 15. Mexico - 59.5, 16. Spain - 58.8, 17. Belgium - 58.6, 18. Panama - 58.5, 19. United States - 58.0, 20. United Arab Emerates - 57.2, 21. Cyprus - 57.0, 22. United Kingdom - 56.9, 23. Andorra - 56.8, 24. Malta - 56.0, 25. Columbia - 55.8, 26. Germany - 55.2, 27. Argentina - 54.9, 28. Singapore - 54.6, 29. Israel - 54.5 , 30. Italy - 54.4, 31. Dominican Republic - 54.3, 32. Brazil - 53.6, 33. Slovenia - 53.3, 34. Venezuala - 53.0, 35. France - 52.8, 36. Greece - 51.5, 37. Chile - 51.4, 38. Uruguay - 51.2, 39. Kuwait - 51.0, 40. Nicaragua - 51.0, 41. Japan - 50.8, 42. Qatar - 50.6, 43. Belize - 50.3... 109. Iraq 31.1,... 121. Mali 25.0,... 135. Zambia 20.1,... 145. Sierra Leone 15.0,... 140. Afghanistan 19.0,... 148. Zimbabawe 12.0.

Travel News - not about terrorists

On the upside:

Cold War Offered Odd Benefit -- It Limited Species Invasions

On the downside:

H1N1 Virus Spreads Easily by Plane

It's seems the same airline industry that has failed to install secure cockpit doors also has failed to install effective cabin air filters. Also, it's a sad commentary that we can look back on the Cold War as a "good".

The American Elite

The American Elite
By William Blum | Anti-Empire Report

Lincoln Gordon died a few weeks ago at the age of 96. He had graduated summa cum laude from Harvard at the age of 19, received a doctorate from Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, published his first book at 22, with dozens more to follow on government, economics, and foreign policy in Europe and Latin America. He joined the Harvard faculty at 23. Dr. Gordon was an executive on the War Production Board during World War II, a top administrator of Marshall Plan programs in postwar Europe, ambassador to Brazil, held other high positions at the State Department and the White House, a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, economist at the Brookings Institution, president of Johns Hopkins University. President Lyndon B. Johnson praised Gordon's diplomatic service as "a rare combination of experience, idealism and practical judgment".

You get the picture? Boy wonder, intellectual shining light, distinguished leader of men, outstanding American patriot.

Abraham Lincoln Gordon was also Washington's on-site, and very active, director in Brazil of the military coup in 1964 which overthrew the moderately leftist government of João Goulart and condemned the people of Brazil to more than 20 years of an unspeakably brutal dictatorship. Human-rights campaigners have long maintained that Brazil's military regime originated the idea of the desaparecidos, "the disappeared", and exported torture methods across Latin America. In 2007, the Brazilian government published a 500-page book, "The Right to Memory and the Truth", which outlines the systematic torture, rape and disappearance of nearly 500 left-wing activists, and includes photos of corpses and torture victims. Currently, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is proposing a commission to investigate allegations of torture by the military during the 1964-1985 dictatorship. (When will the United States create a commission to investigate its own torture?) Read more.

If power corrupts-are the powerful absolutely hypocritical

Why Powerful People -- Many of Whom Take a Moral High Ground -- Don't Practice What They Preach

ScienceDaily (Dec. 30, 2009)— 2009 may well be remembered for its scandal-ridden headlines, from admissions of extramarital affairs by governors and senators, to corporate executives flying private jets while cutting employee benefits, and most recently, to a mysterious early morning car crash in Florida. The past year has been marked by a series of moral transgressions by powerful figures in political, business and celebrity circles. New research from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University explores why powerful people - many of whom take a moral high ground - don't practice what they preach.

Researchers sought to determine whether power inspires hypocrisy, the tendency to hold high standards for others while performing morally suspect behaviors oneself. The research finds that power makes people stricter in moral judgment of others - while being less strict of their own behavior.

Neither sleet nor snow or all that other stuff stops protest

Protest on the ice at the mansion of United Health Group's CEO, Stepthen Hemsley

Channel 4 news coverage and Channel 5 news coverage

On Saturday morning, 12/19/09, eight of us met at the intersection of Shoreline Drive and Ferndale Road West, about ¾ mile from the 7.8 million dollar Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota mansion of United Health Group CEO Stephen Hemsley. We had to spend some time at this location waiting for everyone to find their way to this meeting place. So we put up some of our banners and talked to passers by.

Not shown in these photos was a banner that really upset some of the locals that said, “HOME OF INS. BANDIT S. HEMSLEY”. Some of the people in the neighborhood supported us, but this guy was pretty upset!

5,000 plus hours qualifies player for VA health care

The Onion: Nov 25, 2009

'Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2' Breaking Sales Records

During its first five days on the shelves, Activision's latest installment in the first-person-shooter video game franchise Call Of Duty brought in $550 million worldwide. What are the reasons for its popularity?

● Somehow knows names and places of battles that are set to take place in the next few weeks
●Multiplayer mode enables you to connect with friends, nonstop action prevents them from drawing you into meaningful conversation
●5,000 or more hours of game play qualifies player for VA health care
●Not much good on TV
●When you shoot barrels, they explode
●The controller rumbles when your character is hit with a bullet, which is exactly what the human body does
●Dutiful young Americans realizing just what they are being called to do
●Offers homosexuals only opportunity to serve openly in the military

Will You PAY $1.12 for HEALTHCARE?

Images are copylefted and formatted to fit on a single sheet of letter sized postcard stock with no margins. Postage is only 28¢ each.

Universal, Single Payer Postcards-Front
Universal, Single Payer Postcards-Back

The UNKNOWN VETERAN

Modern War Makes-St. Paul

Modern War Makes-Shanghai

Modern War Makes-Siapan

This Armistice Day, let us remember that civilians are 3.5 times more likely to die in war and its associated evils than soldiers are. And, that civilians do so without training, without equipment, and without medical care; and, without pay, retirement and other benefits.

Heck, they don't even rate the thanks and remembrance of a grateful nation for their sacrifice.

Every Veterans Day I remember that at least I know the immediate action for a grenade attack. Every Veterans Day I think of the poor innocents that have never been trained in the simplest survival skills-combat immediate action drills. At least I know to yell "Grenade!" and to fling myself to the ground, hopefully landing with my boots toward the grenade in order to provide the smallest target, and to cover my neck and head with my hand to protect those vital areas.

I wonder how many people that I pass by every Veterans Day know what to do with a sucking chest wound or any other rudiment of first aid for the massive trauma that results from military hardware colliding with civilian bodies.

I wonder how many civilians realize they will be the ultimate, though perhaps not always the intentional, targets of all manner of weaponry and military expertise.

I wonder why the peace movement does so little to convince civilians that they should be demanding rigorous survival and first aid training if they don't want to stop war as policy.

Each Veterans Day, every Armistice Day, I wonder how many deaths, how much destruction, it will take for people to realize MODERN WAR MAKES VETERANS OF US ALL and that WAR IS HELL.

Many US Children May Live In Families Receiving Food Stamps

ScienceDaily (Nov. 4, 2009) — Nearly half of all American children will reside in a household receiving food stamps at some point between the ages of 1 and 20, according to a report in the November issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

They DESERVE Justice 2

BBDY 4 Pack

Even the least of us deserves justice and accountability starts with you. So why don't you send out a reminder. Even Bush deserves all the justice he can get and we should ensure he gets his day in court.

Use these images as a 4 PAK and send 4 different cards to the same person; or, choose your favorite and send the same postcard to 4 different persons.

It's easy. Each individual postcard is formatted to the dimensions of 4.25"x5.5". Quarter a sheet of paper and combine the cards as you like. Don't forget to print the other side. Remember the postage stamps. Then mail one to your best beloved, your friends and neighbors, some acquaintance--your politicians and their parties. Show someone you care about them and about justice. Don’t forget Cheney, Condi, Gonzales and Rove: CCGR 4 PAK.

MAY BE USED AS HANDBILLS W/O REVERSE SIDE.

Justice for Bush

Justice for Bybee

Justice for Delahunty

Justice for Yoo

Reverse Side Postcard

Deaths Of Local Soldiers Overseas Matter In Shaping War Opinion At Home

ScienceDaily (Oct. 16, 2009) — Americans think locally when they consider whether the loss of U.S. troops overseas warrants troop withdrawals, a new nationwide study suggests.

Researchers found that people were more likely to support withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq if one or more soldiers from their home state were killed there within the past two to three weeks.

That was true regardless of how many soldiers from other parts of the country had been killed recently, or how many total national casualties had occurred.

“If you want to gauge public opinion about the war, look at local coverage about the deaths of local soldiers – that seems to be driving opinion more than what’s on national news,” said Andrew Hayes, co-author of the study and associate professor of communication at Ohio State University.

One Man's Terrorist is Another's FUNNY PRANKSTER

A 'funny prank' leads to charges in Princeton

Two teens put small explosives around Princeton to "make a little commotion." Their timing couldn't have been worse.

It was supposed to be a prank that would cause a little commotion in an already rattled Princeton.

Instead, two teenagers are facing felony charges for leaving six homemade bombs around the city just hours after authorities had closed schools and summoned bomb squads when suspicious packages were found at the high school, the post office and a city building.

DIY Postcard

FRONT: See a PENNY, pick it up and...That's YOUR GOV'T Bail Out!

BACK: As a result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. ABRAHAM LINCOLN - Purportedly in a letter to Colonel William F. Elkins (21 November 1864)

PROTEST PUMPKINS

It's that time of year and here's a tutorial on how to carve your jack-o-lantern. Use your imagination and produce a powerful People's peace pumpkin for prosecutions, please.

You Can't Trust A Tortured Brain: Neuroscience Discredits Coercive Interrogation

ScienceDaily (Sep. 22, 2009)--According to a new review of neuroscientific research, coercive interrogation techniques used during the Bush administration to extract information from terrorist suspects are likely to have been unsuccessful and may have had many unintended negative effects on the suspect's memory and brain functions.

A new article, published in the journal, Trends in Cognitive Science, reviews scientific evidence demonstrating that repeated and extreme stress and anxiety have a detrimental influence on brain functions related to memory.

Protection Or Peril? Gun Possession Of Questionable Value In An Assault, Study Finds

ScienceDaily (Sep. 30, 2009)--In a first-of its-kind study, epidemiologists at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine found that, on average, guns did not protect those who possessed them from being shot in an assault. The study estimated that people with a gun were 4.5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than those not possessing a gun.

The study was released online this month in the American Journal of Public Health, in advance of print publication in November 2009.

“This study helps resolve the long-standing debate about whether guns are protective or perilous,” notes study author Charles C. Branas, PhD, Associate Professor of Epidemiology. “Will possessing a firearm always safeguard against harm or will it promote a false sense of
security?”

Less Than Half Of U.S. Medical Students Understand Health Care System, Study Finds

ScienceDaily (Sep. 30, 2009)--Less than half of graduating medical students in the U.S. say they received adequate training in understanding health care systems and the economics of practicing medicine, according to a study conducted by the University of Michigan Medical School.

The national survey of more than 58,000 medical students from 2003-2007 showed an overwhelming majority were confident about their clinical training. But when it came to understanding health economics, the health care system, managed care, managing a practice or medical record-keeping, 40 percent to 50 percent of students reported feeling inadequately prepared.

The findings were published this month in Academic Medicine.

AMERICA STRONG

Still good advice

Lower Your Political Stress Level - excerpt

A constant barrage of political advertising and infighting can raise your anxiety level. Here's how to calm down.

Political ad overexposure
The anxiety that comes from excessive exposure to campaign coverage, negative political advertising, and the inflammatory chatter stirred up by cable TV news and commentary programs as they cover election campaigns and candidates.
Getting sucked in by the media manipulators.
Political spinmeisters and their advertising-industry colleagues have made a real science out of knowing what motivates us to make choices, and which words and images will push our buttons.
Mistaking opinion for information.

Why we do stupid things

Hummer Owners Claim Moral High Ground To Excuse Overconsumption, Study Finds

Science Daily (Sep 25, 2009) — Hummer drivers believe they are defending America's frontier lifestyle against anti-American critics, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Authors Marius K. Luedicke (University of Innsbruck, Austria), Craig J. Thompson (University of Wisconsin–Madison), and Markus Giesler (York University, Toronto) researched attitudes toward owning and driving Hummers, which have become symbols to many of American greed and wastefulness.

The researchers first investigated anti-consumption sentiments expressed by people who oppose chains like Starbucks and believe they are making a moral choice by shunning consumerism. To these critics, Hummers represent the ills of contemporary society. As one extreme example, on a website, people have posted thousands of photographs of middle fingers directed at Hummer vehicles.

Another Santayana Moment

22 SEP 1979, 00:53 GMT -- US VELA SATELLITE 6911, SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO DETECT NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, REPORTS DUAL FLASHES OF LIGHT INDICATING A NUCLEAR DETONATION IN THE SOUTH ATLANTIC.

The Defense Intelligence Agency and its contractors conclude that a nuclear test was conducted jointly by South Africa and Israel.

An ad hoc presidential panel contradicts that analysis and suggests a meteoroid struck the satellite causing it to sound a false alarm.

Which was it? What should've been the U.S. response? Can you decide?

Wikipedia

Nuclear Weapons Archive

George Washington University

But perhaps the questions we should really be deciding is does Iran have nuclear weapons; and if so, should the U.S. attack Iran and North Korea”.

They DESERVE Justice

CCGR 4 PAK

Even the least of us deserves justice and accountability starts with you. So why don't you send out a reminder. Even Cheney deserves all the justice he can get and we should ensure he gets his day in court.

Use these images as a 4 PAK and send 4 different cards to the same person; or, choose your favorite and send the same postcard to 4 different persons.

It's easy. Each individual postcard is formatted to the dimensions of 4.25"x5.5". Quarter a sheet of paper and combine the cards as you like. Don't forget to print the other side. Remember the postage stamps. Then mail one to your best beloved, your friends and neighbors, some acquaintance--your politicians and their parties. Show someone you care about them and about justice.

Justice for Cheney

Justice for Condi

Justice for Gonzales

Justice for Rove

Reverse Side Postcard