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The President & Everyone Else Appear To Be Reading From A Different Page

In Fact - When it comes to Healthcare. We appear to be reading from a completely different BOOK.
Has he been following what has been going on in the immediate past?
Did someone *"Lace my Drink with VODKA?" Am I drunk.

Do ~~ (WE the People) need a WAKE_UP CALL?

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Progressivism Is A Mental Disorder, Evident In The Utopian Anti-Gun Mentali


      Violence and Utopia- Realism and
      Idealism in the age of gun control

      By Rob Morse. March 27th, 2017

      Evil is hard to accept. I attended a self-defense training class last week where an expert described how callous and downright evil violent criminals can be. I don’t think I’m a coward, but recognizing evil takes an emotional toll. I’m not alone in feeling that way. Gun “prohibition” laws give us psychological relief from facing evil. Projecting evil intent on an inanimate object protects us from having to recognize violence as part of the human condition. By contrast, recognizing evil strips away our innocence and imposes obligations on us. This psychological dynamic explains a lot about the political dynamics behind gun control. Gun control continues to appeal to a certain type of person despite its record of failure.

      We don’t know what a violent person looks like. Violence would be so much easier to tolerate if every violent criminal came with a cartoon thought-bubble floating above them that said, “Watch out for this crazy person.” In fact, criminals defy simple explanation. Some criminals are poor and some are rich. They can be crazy or sane. Some criminals are addicts; others are as sober as the proverbial judge. Some violent criminals grew up deprived and abused, while others grew up pampered and indulged.

      Violence will not go away despite our efforts to label or rationalize criminals and violent behavior. According to data from the US Bureau of Justice Statistics, between one-out-of-two and one-out-of-three of us will be victims of violent crime in our lifetime. Though not an everyday occurrence, the sad fact is that criminal violence is with us. It is uncomfortable to feel at risk. It can even be depressing.

      This is where each of us faces a choice. On one hand, we can view the world as imperfect and slightly dangerous. A realist takes responsibility for his or her own safety. On the other hand, we can cling to a utopian view of the world. An idealist says that it is society’s duty to protect people against violence.

      It is easier for the idealist to talk about utopian prohibitions against violence than to face the real day-to-day effort of personal protection. Idealists say it is up to the police to keep us safe. Realists say we are our own first line of defense, and the police are only there to take reports and make arrests.

      For the idealist, the benefits of being disarmed are real. Placing the burden of protection on society allows the idealist to keep human evil at arm’s length. When someone is attacked, the idealist responds by proposing more gun control laws. Weapons prohibition is psychic Valium to control the toxic emotional impact of real violence.

      The idealist also condemns the realist. The level of psychological projection by idealists is several levels deep. On the surface, the idealist turns the physical objects of the gun or the knife into a fetish. It is the inanimate objects that are dangerous rather than seeing danger in flesh-and-blood human beings. At a deeper level, the placebo of firearms prohibition lets the idealist replace concern with complacency.

      At a still deeper level, idealists not only blame the gun, but the gun owner. The honest person who wants to use a firearm for personal protection disrupts the fantasy that guns are the problem. Idealists cannot allow themselves to admit that honest citizens often prevent a crime or protect the innocent from violence. Therefore, the idealist, especially those in the media, feel compelled to shield the public from this disturbing evidence. That may seem to be a bold claim, but you can see the evidence for yourself.

      Look at the typical news cycle after another innocent person is horribly attacked by a violent criminal. Anti-gun activists and politicians run to the news media to say there is no personal responsibility to protect ourselves. I’m paraphrasing here:

      ‘You don’t need to change how you live because we only need
      a little more gun-control and then everything will be fine.’

      Gun prohibition has no effect on criminals. For example, Maryland imposed strict gun control a few years ago, banning the sale of the most popular semi-automatic rifles. Legislation also limited the number of cartridges allowed in a firearm. Criminals don’t follow gun laws so the results were entirely predictable. The crime rate is now at record levels in Baltimore , (and here) Maryland’s most populous city. That story is repeated again and again in gun-control cities like Chicago and Los Angeles.

      Unfortunately, the idealist doesn’t stop with gun control. He extends his antipathy beyond guns and knives to include any armed civilian. Licensed concealed carry holders are the most law abiding segment of society. They are charged with fewer firearms violations than other segments of society, including the police. Licensed gun owners are the boy scouts of society. Idealists say that since they don’t want to carry a firearm, we all should be disarmed.

      The idealists say their laws stop crime, but gun laws miss their target the vast majority of the time. These anti-gun laws really target the law-abiding gun owner.

      We have already passed some 23 thousand firearms regulations. They failed to stop or materially reduce violent crime . This is the rule rather than the exception since we’ve seen prohibition fail time after time in country after country.

      “But if criminals obeyed the laws then these gun laws would work.
      We just need to pass another law!”

      The antipathy towards gun owners is not based upon stopping violence, but upon reducing the discomfort felt by idealists. For the idealist, letting society take the burden removes both the duty and the emotional cost of facing an imperfect world. For the idealist, protecting the fantasy narrative is more important than respecting the facts.

      In the meantime, the realist faces the daily grind of training and preparation for self-defense.

      Which will you choose?


      Thank you to William April, Tom Givens, and Anna Valdiserri for inspiring this article. I received editorial help from Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse.

      This usefully sums up what most rational people know - criminals do not follow the law, however restrictive that might be - and, the "holier-than-thou" anti-rights people feel that just because they do not want to be armed, no one else should be either. In fact, there are plenty of hypocrites out there who decide that they can be armed but still promote disarmament for everyone else.... "don't do as I do - do as I say"! We have said many times - the more laws there are for "gun control" the more the criminals like it - they want unarmed good guys.

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      Into The Woods: How One Man Survived Alone In The Wilderness For 27 Years


          "Christopher Knight was only 20 years old when he walked away from society, not to be seen again for more than a quarter of a century.

          He had been working for less than a year installing home and vehicle alarm systems near Boston, Massachusetts, when abruptly, without giving notice to his boss, he quit his job. He never even returned his tools. He cashed his final pay cheque and left town.

          Knight did not tell anyone where he was going.

          He says,

          I had no one to tell.

          I didn’t have any friends.

          I had no interest in my co-workers.

          He drove down the east coast of America, eating fast food and staying in cheap motels – the cheapest I could find.

          He travelled for days, alone, until he found himself deep into Florida, sticking mostly to major roads, watching the world go by.

          Eventually, he turned around and headed north. He listened to the radio. Ronald Reagan was president; the Chernobyl nuclear disaster had just occurred.

          Driving through Georgia and the Carolinas and Virginia, blessed with invincibility of youth, buzzed by the pleasure of driving, he sensed an idea growing into a realisation, then solidifying into resolve.

          All his life, he had been comfortable being alone. Interacting with others was so often frustrating. Every meeting with another person seemed like a collision.

          He drove north to Maine, where he had grown up. There aren’t many roads in the centre of the state, and he chose the one that went right by his family’s house.

          He said,

          I think it was just to have one last look around, to say goodbye.

          He didn’t stop.

          The last time he saw his family home was through the windscreen of his car."

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          Republicans Should Tell " Them" To Go !?%!!! Themselves


              I heard that today

              not exactly the way I would have put it but it is something republicans NEED to do - even if they don't WANT to

              and who exactly is " them "

              "Them," of course, is "the enemy"

              And in the case of the republicans whether they can see it or not " them" are fellow republicans - especially the freedom coalition

              I wrote for years in favor of a two state settlement in the land dispute between Palestinians and Israel for the sake of all the children in the region.

              I even proposed a comprehensive solution - never mind that - lots of people proposed solutions and I didn't expect anyone to pay any more attention to mine more than anybody else's especially since I was a nobody writing on obscure websites - you know - build a better mousetrap and people will find you - doesn't always happen

              But what you might be interested in is that I also wrote with absolute confidence and certainty about what would happen if Palestinians and Israelus didn't do what I suggested.

              What I predicted, and actually happened, was that elements that wanted victory and a total destruction of Israel would take over - which is exactly what happened when Hamas kicked the members of the Palestinian Authority they didn't kill out of Gaza.

              Then the Palestinian Authority doubled down and tried to make peace with Hamas ( who wanted total victory) instead of with Israel.

              Wonder what my suggestion was?

              My suggestion was that a joint Israeli/ Palestinian security force should be created (this was before Hamas took over Gaza by force of arms). Of course people said that would never work. But how do they know since they never tried it?

              Certainly parts of Hamas in Gaza like Al Capone in Chicago had charities that helped people but they also killed fellow Palestinians they felt were traitors in their " struggle" with Israel - shot them in the head and threw them in the street - just as Capine eliminated his competitive n.

              The Republicans if they compromise with the Freedom Coalition will take away healthcare from millions of Americans resulting in many unnecessary deaths that early medical detection of deadly diseases and conditions would have prevented just as surely as if they had put a gun to those fellow Americans' heads and pulled the trigger.

              This republican willingness to appease fellow republicans in the Freedom Coaltion no- matter- what - the -consequences to the country as a whole, to me, is as inexplicable as Palestinians' willingness to make up with Hamas whose unwillingness to compromise with anything less than driving Israel into the sea made them an enemy, not a friend, of the peace that would assure the future of the children of the region.

              Hamas, like the Freedom Coalition, sees compromise as surrender and are willing to wage war even if it hurts fellow countrymen.

              The Freedom Coalition is tone deaf to the fact that only 17% of the American people as a whole support the proposed republican healthcare even before they doubled down and wanted to make it tougher yet to the point it would hurt more and more Americans..

              As I type this Ryan is on television railing against Obamacare and gratuitously saying how bad Obamacare is. I say "gratuitous" because Ryan is talking about a failure of republicans to " compromise" but he is talking about republicans compromising failing to compromise with the republican freedom Coaltion - not with independents or democrats, fellow Americans all, with whom he should be compromising.

              Hamas has their eternal dream of driving Israel into the sea. Ryan just can't help himself - he is talking about today as a republican " failure" to repeal Obamacare ( the republican dream) instead of what it really is a victory not only for the 24 million Americans who won't lose their healthcare with the repeal of Obamacare but also the 155 million Americans who now have insurance through their employers which will be protected from the raised deductibles and lessened coverage hidden in the republican plan. What good does it do to lower premiums if you increase out of pocket expenses and lessen coverage at the same time you propose taking away the twenty percent profit cap and say they can charge as much as they want again for any kind of coverage with no restrictions? The republican proposal is more than a shell game - it is a death dealing recipe for disaster - except for those wealthy receiving the tax breaks.

              The CBO says Obamacare is not collapsing despite republican propaganda.

              As I type this Trump is ignoring the positives in the CBO report stating Obamacare is stable overall ( maybe he thinks he alone knows everything just as he thinks he can fix everything) stating his contrarian opinion based on " certain places" where premiums have skyrocketed or insurance companies have pulled out. To understand how obscene this is you need to picture Trump sitting in off camera meetings with giant private insurers who pulled out of some states and stayed in other states that were more profitable for them and tried to buy up other insurance companies in those more profitible states before being prevented because what they were trying to do violated anti- trust and anti- monopoly laws.

              Republican proposals in their failed plan tried to do away with anti trust and anti monopoly provisions to " help" insurance companies.

              Make no mistake an autopsy of the dead republican healthcare plan might well show that it would have actually suppressed competition.

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              The SANE60 - Moderates For A Stable America - Anti - Trump Since 2015


                  Eight months (now 15 months - BTJ) ago I recruited six people of various backgrounds who shared a couple of traits. They are funny, intellectually honest in their discourse and own a profound dislike of extremism. We all share a macabre sense if humor.

                  The SANE60. We are Republicans, Democrats, Liberals and Conservatives, a Libertarian and one who claims to be a Socialist (just because he can afford to be). Many of our discussions include observations that seem to be reasonably well represented in the chart below (with thanks to Lulz' Political Spectrum - we do not agree with all of their stuff, but they have a cool meme):

                  (From my original posting before I was a full-time Yabberzite:)

                  I have developed the term Sane 60 (with entertaining thoughts stimulated by listening, talking with and reading the amazing Will Durst) to describe the true moderate centers of the voter demographic in the USA. 20% of each major party is both loud and extreme. Their rhetoric includes seditious talk when their party is not in power, an utter lack of respect for the office their person does not hold, and the assertion that anyone that disagrees with them is potentially guilty of Treason.

                  These 20 percenters are artificially creating a real polarization of Americans, dividing our population by making every effort to curtail the political and religious freedom that their opposition holds.

                  The SANE 60 (feel free to spread it around, I hope to have logos made soon) will be known for their failure to spew rhetoric while picketing, their lack of hateful speech and their tolerance of others.

                  Not to say we do not have our disagreements.

                  So here we are, looking into the deep abyss of cultural divide where the winds of limbo roar (with apologies to Blue Oyster Cult). Those of us who are embarrassed by the Ridiculous Right and the Ludicrous Left watch them as they play lemmings. We refuse to go running off the cliff with those sorry misled souls, and our group remains steadfast against the extremists, tossing out lifelines to those swept up by the legions of misguided voters stampeding to their political demise.

                  Those who are rescued from the certain doom of radical ideology are offered counseling, preparing them for the return to rational, balanced thought. It often starts with developing the coping skills to accept the realization that the best interest of their previously trusted fringe leadership is in no way related to their own.

                  Who knows, maybe we will become the next centrist party.

                  We promise to have great snacks.

                  #SANE60 twilson117czookLogicopieDonna Wood

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                  Pundit Post

                  Magical Thinking


                      I talked to a lady after Obamacare was first instituted who claimed her premiums had doubled. Actually before Obamacare was enacted I had written about insurance companies who had quadrupled their profits by doubling premiums and cutting coverage in half. This price gouging was not uncommon at all before Obamacare.

                      To be perfectly clear I am talking about insurance companies' decisions before Obamacare was put into effect - not decisions mandated by Obama or federal government regulations of any kind.

                      After Obamacare I could not write about insurance companies gouging because price gouging was not allowed because, under Obamacare, insurance companies were required to limit themselves to twenty percent " overhead " profits and perks to executives and return any excess back to policyholders in the form of reduced premiums. The proposed Trumpcare plan would defeat that by taking away limits on how much insurance companies could pay their top executives and how much they could take from policyholders' to spend on things that had nothing to do with their policyholders' healthcare.

                      Anyhow getting back to that lady I found out she had some kind of plan that she paid into but had never able to collect on because the deductible and what was covered were so high. If you combined what she paid in premiums and what she paid out of pocket for decades it is my opinion that she would have been better off with a real insurance policy with higher premiums. As it was she had paid in for decades but never had her healthcare insurance policy cover a single cent of her healthcare expenses. Can you spell " sucker."?

                      Go ahead. Tell me the lady had a "right" to buy a catastrophic plan and was lucky somehow she never had to use it.

                      Here's the thing. People without insurance stroke out all the time from conditions like high blood pressure that could be easily and more cheaply be taken care of IF they had healthcare and a doctor BEFORE they stroked out and went to the hospital ( more expensive than a doctor's visit) AFTER their catastrophic event and wound up a vegetable in a nursing home their care for the rest of their lives paid for by taxpayers - and disproportionately more by the middle class than the rich who can take advantage of more loopholes ( ironically some of these loopholes are regulations they claim they want to eliminate but haven't simply because the relations favor them - it helps keep this good ole boy system in place by spreading the falsehood that government regulations harm regulations).

                      Under ACA "catastrophic" policies were not allowed to be sold to people under 30 years of age. Right wing republicans would say that takes away " choice" but democratic designers would answer that for people under 30 the chances of ever collecting on a " catastrophic" policy was near zero - a very bad deal for the individual to pay and pay on a policy that their odds of ever using was less than winning the lottery. Worse, republicans " selling" young people the idea they don't really need insurance if they do n't want to buy it because if something catastrophic happens they can just go to the hospital and be treated even if they can't pay - sounds good but someone pays for those hospital visits and it is all the American taxpayers through higher taxes - and as I said before disproportionately by the middle class more than the rich Trumpcare plans will further advantage.

                      Private insurance companies in my experience have been too much about " selling" and making profit and not enough about serving the best interests of their policyholders. Perhaps the worse examples are how insurance companies try to " sell" insurance as an "investment" instead of protection. Investments work, or fail, on risk. Insurance only works to the extent it eliminates risks.

                      Republicans now want to make financial advisors able to NOT make the interest of the people who give them money the most important factor in how they invest that money. That's obscene, especially since it's done in the name of getting more people into investing who, and this seems clear to me if not to republicans, despite the fact that high fees and risk involved kept poor out of risky investments for their own protection before.

                      Nearly half a century ago I bought a whole life insurance policy when I first got married. Republicans might say a term life policy might be a better investment and money saved would PROBABLY make more money as an investment over the long term. But I was buying guaranteed protection for a wife I am still married to - not risk in the stock market that might, or might not make more money in the long term.

                      Years later after that whole life policy had built up cash value two salesmen came to offer a " deal." Their deal was use the cash value to buy additional insurance and they had pages of charts showing how much I would under their convoluted scheme at retirement. I told them their figures were wrong and I was absolutely sure their scheme would not work. For one thing they based their chart on past performance of the stock market - not future performance. This is simple gambling - not insurance. Millions of Americans found this out in the recent recession when they lost most, or all, of their 401k investments in the recent recession. The republican idiots who said " they" ( most of them) would have recovered all their money if they had just left their money in their 401ks till after the recession was little consolation to those who lost everything and, more to the point of what I'm writing about here, to those who lost their jobs and insurance and had to use that 401k money for healthcare expenses and just to live on. They tell me without SS ( guaranteed insurance not an investment) they would be left with nothing in old age.

                      Social security is an insurance program - not an investment program - and none, least of all republican lawmakers and/or large American insurance companies with their track records, should be allowed to change it. Just lifting the cap on the income ceiling would sustain it well into the future. It is an easy fix in our lifetimes.

                      Anyhow those insurance salesmen were arrogant but solemnly promised me their scheme, which they knew wouldn't work because I told them even if they had not prepared or reviewed their own presentation materials, was guaranteed.

                      Decades later I joined a class action suit when it turned out I was right and their scheme didn't work. They evidently sold policies to poor people who when the stock market disn't perform couldn't make up the difference on the payments on the increased insurance they had been encouraged to take on and lost that insurance and, because they had used the cash value of their risk free whole life policy to gamble on what I assured the insurance agents was not a sure thing in spite of the fact they insisted it was, lost everything.

                      Evidently the court agreed with me because everybody who had been sold these policies in America by what was probably America's largest insurance company was given their money back.

                      Too bad some of those people who had been sold a gamble as a sure thing by insurance salesman had died in the decades in between and their families had nothing to show for all the money they had paid in. Probably some of the families of those who died without the insurance they paid in but couldn't collect on couldn't be found - so many families insured wound up getting nothing while the insurance company prospered.

                      " high risk" insurance pools republicans purpose giving to states ( and taking risk away from insurance companies) under Trumpcare have never worked and it is magical thinking to think they ever will - but, trust me, what you need to be looking at is republicans who are selling high risk insurance pools as a way for insurance companies to NOT have to deal with the risk of actually having to deal with sick people and compete better in a less risky environment and giving lower premiums to selected policy holders ( insert higher profits for insurance companies here). Insurance companies, legitimate insurance companies, use actuarial tables to manage risk. Taking risk away from insurance companies and giving it to states doesn't elimate risk or the cost of healthcare - just who pays most for coverings that risk, and not coincidently, who bears the cost - insurance companies or states. This is the kind of thinking that enables republicans to transfer Medicaid costs to individual STATES and say that reduces the FEDERAL deficit. It is a shell game. Someone always pays - and it is the American people whether it is through federal or state taxes.

                      Think. Why would America want to protect insurance company profit more than people?

                      Lower the premiums for healthcare for some under Trumpcare by taking healthcare away from tens of millions who already have healthcare away to make that happen?

                      Magical thinking.

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                      GOOD NEWS (with An Asterisk)


                          IT'S BENIGN !!!!!!

                          but he has to be evaluated at a major hospital now...an oncology surgeon. there are two ways to treat this neoplasm when it's not cancerous:
                          remove the peritoneum lining, the right side of the bowel, the cecum, colon with blood vessels and lymph nodes and a portion of the large intestine.
                          follow with chemotherapy


                          wait and see

                          CT scans every 6 months to check for new neoplasms for rest of life

                          i kinda doubt if he's gonna go with option #1: the current thinking in the field is no longer aggressively treat but take the 2nd option. i did some reading on this and found a study done in greece where the outcomes for #1 and #2 are the same.
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                          The North American Bridge Championships - JUNIOR TEAM IRELAND Learns To Win


                              Nathan Doyle, John Connolly, Dan Varley, GS Jade Barrett ( BridgeTourJade ), Sponsor Michael Huston (who kept the spirit of St Paddy's Day by wearing the green in his breast pocket), Captain (and Yabberz Member Thomas Mac Cormac ) Arran Bolger and Michael Donnelly after one of their eight victories during the ten days of competition.

                              For the last eleven days I have had the enormous pleasure of training the JUNIOR TEAM IRELAND, six magnificent young men from Dublin. Five aged 20 and the old man being Nathan Doyle at the advanced age of 22.

                              All currently University Students at Gonzaga College and Trinity College Dublin, the team performed spectacularly well in their divisions. Their eight victories, three seconds, a third and a fourth, placed them in the top 10% of the nearly 4000 competitors at the Kansas City Spring North American Championships.

                              The lads housed with Dr Donna Wood, Karen Lee Barrett, Thomas Mac Cormac and myself at a magnificent house on 4400 Campbell in the Hyde Park District of Kansas City, where we made fine use of the over 4500 square foot home that we found online (thank you AirBNB).

                              Aces and Knaves became interested in the squad after their remarkable and utterly unexpected early successes and filmed them at practice using a 360 camera:

                              At the end of the video, Michael Donnelly mentions the 0-10,000 Swiss, one of the majors for the developing players. They failed to win that event, but one of their more famous competitors did:

                              Microsoft chairman Bill Gates likes to keep a low profile when he plays in bridge tournaments. That became impossible Saturday when his team won the 0–10,000 NABC Swiss. Gates played with Sharon Osberg, Richard Friesner and Eric Robinson. It was a first NABC win for Gates and Friesner.

                              The Great American Bridge Tour's TEAM YABBERZ had its own fine measure of success with a strong second losing at the wire in the final event of the week:

                              BridgeTourJade, Dr Donna Lombardini Wood, Daniel Hoekstra , Karen Lee Barrett, Bob Solick - not pictured, but taking the photo: Thomas Mac Cormac.

                              The boys and their fearless leader have returned home (with the exception of Stephen Barr who is taking his studies in Singapore), carrying their heads high and full of the promise of grander things to come.

                              GS Jade Barrett, 21 March 2017

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