Wednesday, May 28, 2014

If I was a candidate for Senate I would be among the first in line to see the exhibit.

Yesterday 4:33pm

As you may have read (click here) on the mainpage, the Creation "Museum" in Kentucky was using this Memorial Day weekend to open a new exhibit: a semi-complete skeleton of Allosaurus fragilis named Ebenezer.
As you may have also read on the mainpage, the paleontological profession, in particular the vertebrate paleontological profession, is really interested in figuring out how to balance private and public ownership of fossils.

Obviously you want to know more about the interplay between those two, right? Cool. I'm going to talk a lot about Ebenezer....
For any candidate running for office, it isn't about whether or not the story of Noah's Arch fits into their belief system, but, the fact such beliefs are allowed to exist in private institutions in the USA.
If people want others to exhibit tolerance of their rights, they have to respect the rights of Ebenezer to exist, too. I take it no scientist was called into carbon date all this. The Bakers were allowed to exist, too. Right up to the point they were breaking the law in the name of god. And they have paid their dues to society, too.

There is still nothing implicating Secretary Shinseki.

Asking the Secretary to step down won't accomplish anything. The Secretary needs to decide to ask the President for a Special Prosecutor. The delays are suppose to have been resolved with extending services within the private health care network to existing wait list veterans.

May 28, 2014
By Richard A. Oppel, Jr. and Michael D. Shear

The inspector general (click here) for the Department of Veterans Affairs reported on Wednesday that at least 1,700 veterans at the agency’s medical center in Phoenix were not registered on the proper waiting list to see doctors, creating a serious condition that means veterans “continue to be at risk of being forgotten or lost” in the convoluted scheduling process.

All the while, the hospital falsely reported waiting times that suggested delays were minimal, the report said.

The report prompted several leading Republicans, including Senator John McCain of Arizona, to call for the secretary of veterans affairs, Eric Shinseki, to step down.

“While our work is not complete, we have substantiated that significant delays in access to care negatively impacted the quality of care at this medical facility,” Richard J. Griffin, the acting inspector general for the department, said in an interim report on his investigation into the Phoenix medical center....

The VA hospitals involved were blind siding oversight. How is that implicating the Secretary?

May 28, 2014
By Akesh Houdek

...Improvements in oversight (click here) and auditing are surely part of the solution here, but there's a much more fundamental change that needs to happen: Regular line-level employees who see wrongdoing on the part of their coworkers, or are asked to engage in wrongdoing by their supervisors, need to be able to do something about it without threat of retaliation. Any human endeavor examined closely enough is a disgraceful mess, and most of us know this most directly from our jobs. But we also instantly recognize true malfeasance when we directly encounter it. So, of all the people who were involved or knew about these terrible practices who worked at the VA, why did it take so long for the truth to come out? A recent CNN report quotes Dr. Sam Foote, a doctor who had worked for the VA for 24 years....

...It's telling that Foote went to the press only after retiring. Despite the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989, the federal government during the Bush and Obama administrations has grown increasingly hostile to whistleblowers....

What improvements in oversight, they were erasing the records? It is difficult to make quality improvements when it is criminality one is dealing with.

...workers devised a solution that involved entering information into a computer screen, printing the screen, and then not saving the record....

They may have devised a solution, but, it wasn't legal. How is oversight suppose to pick up delays when all the records were erased except for a stake of papers no one authorized or knew existed. These formulated a solution and never sought approval for their solution. They simply went ahead and did what they wanted to do. This calls for resignations and purging the VA of incompetents, but, it doesn't start with the Secretary. It just doesn't.

Asking Secretary Shinseki to step down would be nothing short of scapegoating. What really bothers me, as this scandal unfolds, is the fact these problems were systemic to include something like 26 other facilities. That systemic problem proves there are deeper problems and it is in the leadership that seems to have gotten their way all to easily for too long. Who are in leadership, friends and family of those calling for the Secretary's resignation. 

The problems have to be solved and it isn't going to happen of Secretary Shinseki is scapegoated for the sake of politics.

Where are the insurance commissioners?

This is the Texas Insurance Commissioner. She isn't going her job.
Texas Insurance Commissioner Julia Rathgeber (click here) listened to testimony at a public hearing on proposed rules for health insurance navigators in Austin on Dec. 20, 2013.

This is a story I heard on the radio the other day and my first reaction was "Where is the insurance commissioner?"

The couple was expecting their third child without insurance and now the wife had a pre-existing condition. They went to the health care exchanges and didn't quality for Medicaid because Texas refuses the two years of federal payments. So, the husband looked through the exchanges and found a Blue Cross Blue Shield policy for the cost of about $400.00. When the wife then sought pre-natal care they were told their insurance was not accepted.

May 27, 2014 3:27 AM ET

...And so they dropped their new plan; (click here) they just stopped paying the premium.
They signed on to be in the midwife's care. Nick signed up for a nonprofit, Christian-orientedcost-sharing plan. The Robinsons will pay cash upfront and request reimbursement later....

The couple gave up with an impending birth and took the best road they could find even though it made them uneasy about their choice. They basically had no alternative that fit their comfort zone. There was a Christian organization standing at the ready and helped the couple deliver their child.

The lack of services provided this couple by Blue Cross Blue Shield is not the fault of the insurance company, otherwise, it would be fraud. This is a discontinuity between the insurances and the health care providers. The providers are disregarding the insurance policies they signed onto and leaving the consumer outside the health care system. The providers had no right to turn away a pregnant woman with an insurance policy they are listed as participating in network.

The Texas Insurance Commissioner is looking the other way and it is completely based in politics. There is no enforcement of health care contracts between insurance companies and their providers. The providers are not allowed to cherry pick their customers. The consumers of health care are paying their premiums, finding providers within the insurance network they chose, but, the providers are turning them away.

The Texas Insurance Commissioner is not only ignoring her responsibilities in enforcing contracts to benefit the consumer, she is endangering the lives of innocent citizens of Texas. The consumers are doing what they are suppose to be doing. They are being responsible. It is not their problem. The Insurance Commissioner should be investigated for negligence linked with services provided to consumers by these providers.

This entire circumstance is ridiculous. $400 per month premium, plenty of providers listed, and they refuse the patients while stating there is no hospital accepting the insurance. This is Blue Cross Blue Shield for god sake. Blue Cross Blue Shield doesn't know what it is doing? They fully well know in order to sell health care insurance they have to have providers linked with hospitals where their customers can receive complete services.

Someone needs to do something about this insurance commissioner before people die if they haven't already.

Just because this is Obamacare doesn't mean state insurance commissioners can look the other way because it is politically popular to do so. The insurance commissioners are suppose to be upholding the law, not the GOP doctrine.

"I was suffering from a god complex."

Those were the words spoken by a USA soldier recently returned from Afghanistan.

"I didn't care about being home or going home. I was in control and it was a nothing more than a bad habit."

Two and a half years ago he was on the battlefield in Afghanistan when he had a nervous breakdown. The military immediately removed him to Europe for evaluation. It was decided he could no longer function to carry out daily tasks, yet alone fire a weapon and save his own life or the lives of others.

He was shipped home and spent two years in rehab for PTSD. He only recently was released to return home to his family. And it was only two days ago he told his grandfather visiting for a fishing trip, "I was suffering from a god complex. I believed I had control over all life within my line of sight, including my own. Nothing could hurt me. Being in Afghanistan was where I belonged forever."

Hayden has his own god complex. He needs to put on the uniform and handle the Taliban forever. It might not pay as well, but, the satisfaction to being god far outweighs any tangible items money can buy. Sex is meaningless when he can slaughter an entire village within minutes. Better than sex even.