Wednesday, October 15, 2014

On a lighter note, the Florida Gubernatorial Debate.

The rule that was suppose to prevent a fan placed within the debate was prohibitive of electronic equipment. 

Everyone knows the provision in any debate rule in regard to electronic equipment is about devices such as lap top computers or cell phones or ear pieces that receive transmission from off stage. The electronic device in question was outlawed because it would provide an edge over the other participants.

Unless the electric fan in question can talk or send covert messages to Governor Crist there really was no reason for Governor Scott to challenge the rule.

What next?

So. Ebola paid a visit to Ohio, too.

Judge Jenkins isn't responsible for the infection of any health care workers. There are now two young women, one on her way to a wedding, now infected. That is statistically is not a coincidence. There was something wrong with the response at the hospital.

Judge Jenkins is a good and decent man that carries the people of Dallas in his heart. He strives to be as perfect in his protection of people as possible, but, he doesn't set policy regarding Ebola. At this point, however, he is the only one that seems to be doing that.

The Judge in writing the law stating those exposed may not travel until cleared of any infective state is correct in doing so and I am sure he doesn't need anyone to tell him that. My concern is rather simple. While he can limit the travel in Dallas, it doesn't apply to Ohio. 

This is now an inter-state and not an intra-city problem. There needs to be a federal response including someone at the President's Cabinet that is writing policy. It is now a federal problem.

President Obama is becoming a juggler of priorities with both a threat in the Middle East and the actual threat at home regarding Ebola. This is not a good situation for the country.

"Frontier Airlines" is based in Colorado. Now it is the FAA that has to examine it's authority in acting to prevent the spread of disease. The FAA has no personnel to address this. The policies have to come from the Executive Branch only there is no one there to write policies including that of airlines. There has to be a central authority that understands the dynamics of Ebola and it's potential.

At this point, considering Mr. Duncan came from West Africa and the potential for wider spread of the virus is a potential with jet flight, maybe the WHO has overriding authority. If nothing else the WHO could present a protocol that would apply to end the spread of the virus.

The WHO is probably the most expedient at this point. The American people need to demand a Surgeon General.

Anyone denying the climate crisis in Iowa is lying.

October 6, 2014
On the (click here) Iowa Peace Network website, there is a nice article and slide show about the Iowa City Peoples Climate March and Campaign Nonviolence Rally on September 21....

July 11, 2013
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Five years (click here) after record flooding drowned this manufacturing town and caused billions of dollars in damage, city officials and private investors are rebuilding homes and businesses on the Cedar River banks. But some people here are troubled to see structures rising in places where, not long ago, entire first stories were underwater....

We can't risk Iowa to anyone who is unwilling to see the forest for the trees in regard to the climate crisis.

Iowa ranks first in the nation in corn and soybean production. (click here)

Iowa pork producers raise 28% of all U.S. pork.

Hamburger from a single steer will make about 720 quarter-pound hamburgers.

The average size of an Iowa farm is around 333 acres (as of 2008).

In 2012 the production of Iowa corn was 1,835,358,239 bushels from 13,709,408 acres of 47,477 farms. These are small family farmers with about 300 acres of cropland dedicated to corn as a grain with a production of approximately 133 bushels per acre.

The same corn production in 2007 was 2,292,163,101 bushels from 13,842,202 acres of 50,095. These are small family farmers with about 300 acres of cropland dedicated to corn as a grain with a production of approximately 163 bushels per acre.

That is a net loss of 30 bushels per acre or more 20 percent in Iowa's corn crop. Noted also is the loss of nearly 3000 farms. With falling yields a small family farm would have a difficult time surviving.

The global economic collapse of 2008 also contributed to the loss in small family farms in Iowa.

These statistics came from the 2012 Census, Iowa (click here)

It is easy to see the climate is playing a role in the corn production in Iowa. I would think US Senator Harkin could speak to the changes in corp production in Iowa with his longevity as their Senator.

The Braley campaign needs to request a redress by USA Today which lists Ernst as a Democrat in their visuals to this poll.

Article (click here) 

Perhaps a one on one interview with the Senate Candidate Braley may prove to be appropriate in redressing this gross error.

Below is a chart from a report regarding the climate crisis and soil temperature in Iowa. It speaks to the increased temperatures experienced in Iowa's soil and the delay in applying fertilizer in the fall. The report also speaks to rainfall and flooding resulting in lower crop yields and loss of fertile soil due to erosion.

...Greater precipitation during the growing season, (click here) as we have been experiencing in Iowa (Takle 2011), has been associated with increased yields; however, excessive precipitation early in the growing season adversely affects crop productivity. Waterlogged soil conditions during early plant growth often result in shallower root systems that are more prone to diseases, nutrient deficiencies, and drought stress later in the season (Stolzy and Sojka 1984). An Iowa study indicated that waterlogged conditions are responsible for an average 32 percent loss in crop yields, and 100 percent crop production loss is expected in four out of 10 years on poorly drained areas (Kanwar et al. 1984). The maximum crop damage is observed when flooding occurs at the early stages of growth (Bhan 1977, Chaudhary et al. 1975). These data reinforce the common understanding that a dry spring followed by a wet summer is much better for yields than a wet spring followed by a dry summer....

The information listed in this article comes from several authors which is perfectly fine. Comprehensive reports regularly are drafted from individual reports authored by different scientists.

...Application of N in the fall when soil temperatures fall 
below 50 degrees Fahrenheit is a common practice in Iowa. According to Iowa Environmental Mesonet observations (2010), soil temperatures in Ames, Iowa, historically are almost 
certain to drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit by October 2. However, on 
October 24, 2010, most of Iowa still had soil temperatures into the mid to high 50s, which resulted in delaying N application that fall. The first fall day when the average soil temperatures are below 50oF is occurring later and later in the season (Fig. 3-2), a change that delays the time of fall N application....

Talking crops can be a difficult topic and talking climate almost impossible, however, local Ag agents and even the farmers themselves can spell out the changes in their crops and yields and how it effects the family farms in Iowa. Mr. Braley should not attempt to be an expert where he is not as Ms. Ernst has stated, however, there is a difference between a US Senator engaged in finding out the information from scientists and one content to ignore the science completely simply because she isn't one.

The evidence of the climate crisis in any state is everywhere, a candidate just has to look for it.

"Losing Ground" discusses the unrelenting damage to crop production in the USA by the climate crisis.

"Losing Ground" (click here)
By Craig Cox, Andrew Hug and Nils Bruzelius
Across wide swaths of Iowa and other Corn Belt states, the rich, dark soil that made this region the nation’s breadbasket is being swept away at rates many times higher than official estimates.
That is the disturbing picture revealed by scientists tracking soil erosion in Iowa after every storm that hits the state and producing an unprecedented degree of precision in soil erosion estimates. The Environmental Working Group corroborated the scientists’ findings with aerial surveys that produced striking visual evidence of the damage.
In April 2010, USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) released data estimating the rate of soil erosion on agricultural land in the United States. On the surface, the data from the 2007 National Resources Inventory (NRI) were reassuring. Erosion in Iowa averaged 5.2 tons per acre per year, only slightly higher than the allegedly “sustainable” rate of five tons per acre per year for most Iowa soils — the amount that can supposedly be lost each year without reducing agricultural productivity. Across the entire Corn Belt, erosion averaged only 3.9 tons per acre per year, according to the NRCS data....

The latest Ebola victim was on an airplane?

Prime example of a missing Surgeon General. This is a national emergency and Congress needs to return to DC. The Director of the CDC is filling in for someone who should have been making policy all along. This is tragic. All this could have been avoided.

The current nominee has exceptional credentials. Given the urgency of the need for a policy author it would take too much time to seek anyone else with the same qualifications.

In 2011 Dr. Murthy served on the U.S. Presidential Advisory Council on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He was ready for Surgeon General.

...Sure he has an impressive resume. (click here) Undergrad at Harvard. Yale MD/MBA program. Co-founder and president of Doctors for America. But we asked ourselves, what else does the young doctor do when he’s not busy saving lives at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and teaching at Harvard? His Facebook page tells us he enjoys listening to U2, hip-hop and Enya, as well as watching Glee, but what else should you know about him? Here’s what we found out....

...He pays it forward. Murthy was born in England, but his family immigrated to Miami, Florida, when he was just three years old. His father grew up in Hallegere village in the Mandya District of Karnataka in southern India. As a young undergraduate at Harvard, Murthy co-founded VISIONS Worldwide, Inc., a nonprofit organization that organized HIV/AIDS preventive education and empowerment programs in India and the United States. Two years later, he also co-founded Swasthya, a community health partnership to promote basic health education, clinical care, and social support in Sringeri, India....

He has done all this before. He is more qualified to handle Ebola and increase the expertise for a Third World victory over this deadly disease. The global community needs someone who can get this done and he is the most qualified.

TransCanada's pipe dream cost it more than the potential for reality. 30% sale is enormous. Who is kidding who?

Canadian Tutelage (click here)

Back in 2007, Kuwait had much more ambitious plans for the Ratqa oil field.
Though the current goal is to suck 120,000 barrels per day of heavy oil out of the field, back in 2007 the goal was 900,000 barrels per day by 2020. And Alberta's petroleum engineers would lend their expertise to the cause, or at least that was the plan for Kuwait Oil Company at the time. 
"Unless we seek the experience of the industry here, we will not be able to reach our target," Ali al-Shammari, at the time the deputy managing director for finance for the Kuwait Oil Company, told the Calgary Herald. "We will need [international oil companies'] help in developing the reservoirs and may also consider the options of signing enhanced technical services agreements."
Kuwait's entrance into Canada depicts how important Alberta's tar sands have become for the global geopolitical landscape. And Kuwait opening its doors to the oil majors depicts the country as an emerging player in the global oil market.
Kuwait got sold a pipe dream. The tar sands oil is not efficient and is far too costly to postpone the shift to alternative fuels. It is the matter of making the investment. 

Will a pipeline so dangerous to water sources and farmland in the USA ever be built? No. T

he investment today demands alternative energy, reduction of greenhouse gases and very prudent use of water sources. The trend that took the USA to the brink of disaster has to be reversed and it won't happen overnight. There is no simple answer, but, one thing is true we have to start shifting the climate crisis as time is running out to salvage enough sustainable land. California's drought is a warning no one can ignore.

...Expensive and grainy. (click here) California produces a sizable majority of many American fruits, vegetables, and nuts: 99 percent of artichokes, 99 percent of walnuts, 97 percent of kiwis, 97 percent of plums, 95 percent of celery, 95 percent of garlic, 89 percent of cauliflower, 71 percent of spinach, and 69 percent of carrots (and the list goes on and on). Some of this is due to climate and soil. No other state, or even a combination of states, can match California’s output per acre. Lemon yields in California, for example, are more than 50 percent higher than in Arizona. California spinach yield per acre is 60 percent higher than the national average. Without California, supply of all these products in the United States and abroad would dip, and in the first few years, a few might be nearly impossible to find. Orchard-based products in particular, such as nuts and some fruits, would take many years to spring back....

The risk for investment into petroleum products is far to high to continue to consider.

Kuwait is eleventh in production with about 2.96 percent of current global oil. I find it interesting the Kuwaitis are interested in investment for their country's income. They should seek to find investment that is more sustainable that will also supply it's treasury with enough income to benefit the Kuwaiti people.

If I may? Rather than continued investment into oil, Kuwait and other countries seeking income to their treasuries can examine the several wind farm companies in the USA. If these alternative energy companies had significant investment, including the Great Lakes, their return on the dollar would be good as more and more USA energy came from alternatives in wind and solar. These investors in places like Kuwait should consider the opportunities available in the USA in alternative energies.

My initial reaction is what else is new? The Vietnam Vets exposed to Agent Orange took forever to be certified for benefits.

From the New York Times:

Chemical Secrets of the Iraq War (click here)

This should not surprise anyone, the methods of destroying the weapons was not necessarily available at the time these weapons were used and burying them was probably the cheapest method.

It would be interesting if a full inventory of chemical and biological weapons were carried out globally. There are conventions for such weapons dating back to the late 1800s. I think the earliest one was the Hague Convention of 1899.

It would be extremely tedious and somewhat costly to attempt to trace every chemical and biological weapon that exists. But, it definitely has it's upside to being worthwhile.

There needs to be no penalty for reporting mishandled or poorly handled weapons. When there are penalties finding them will be nearly impossible. Invading Iraq was still wrong by need and proportionality, but, finding reasons for cooperation would bring about a better benefit.

At least the soldiers are getting care now. Blister agents don't cause birth defects in cases like that as Agent Orange does.

The absolute earliest a convention existed was 1874 in the Brussels Code, but, it never received widespread attention.

A recent book sought to trace at least the beginnings of accountability and war.

Judith Gardam, "Necessity, Proportionality and the Use of Force," Cambridge University Press, July 21, 2011. 

It would be correct for the United Nations to track down the possibility of this continued danger in any country. To date I think the last to join any weapons convention is Mayanmar and Israel. But, this would be costly and I doubt the UN has the budget. Perhaps just one office with one person doing all the work is doable. 

In case anyone is interested enough to understand some of these concepts there is this (click here). It is a fairly extensive reading list. There would definitely be a place in the CIA for such a person.

When a President talks to an empty chair in his cabinet, his time is now consumed with understanding the SPECIALITY of that cabinet member, looking for others to fill in as a surrogate to his office and then administering that protocol himself through his surrogates.

Scrambling to catch up is NOT good policy!

The United States is lucky it has a lawyer in the White House. Lawyers, as a rule, are quick studies and don't make decisions based in what is possible financially so much as what is necessary.

"Good job, Brownie." When cabinet secretaries are worse than the qualifications for the position, the public has a problem. Cabinet secretaries should not be political cronies AND there should not be infrastructure created to satisfy cronies and donors either. Packing an administration with political appointees to protect those elected creates a burden to the system and greater inefficiency.

The media picked up where Bush left off. Keep it up. Thank you.

There is no Surgeon General.

It is fine for the media to seek perfection and perfection is possible, but, there is no basis to point fingers at the Director of the CDC or otherwise.

The Surgeon General in DC is suppose to entertain the POSSIBILITIES of disease in the USA. It is the Surgeon General that dictates policy when the "Possibility becomes the Reality."

When this disease broke out in Dallas there should have been a policy to implement and there wasn't.

The current candidate incorporates the danger of guns in the country in the possibilities of this country. THAT is a valid subject for the US Surgeon General.

What would happen if the Arizona militia were turned loose and there were vigilantes killing people? What would the hospitals and otherwise be expected to do when such patients presented at the ER?

A US Surgeon General is suppose to protect the people of this country from all possibilities not simply exclude 'bad news from cronies.'

I don't want to hear how anyone is responsible for this outcome in Dallas. Dallas has performed exceptionally well incurring the first cases of Ebola without any help OR backup. Judge Clay Jenkins had to turn to "faith friends" in order to secure a living arrangement for the family of Mr. Jenkins. All that should have been in place already, but, wasn't because there is no national policy or national authorities to provide assistance in a meaningful way.

I applaud Judge Clay Jenkins and his political clout among his 'faith friends.' This is the second time he has turned to these friends to achieve compassion and effectiveness of government. The first I have heard of was with the children crossing the border. That is government effective because of a man's moral connections, not the preparedness of any agency of the government. It is dangerous. What would have happened if Judge Jenkin's faith friends said no. Where would Dallas be then? There is a reason a federal government exists.

This challenge should not even exist. There should be policy in place so this would not be a problem.

October 13, 2014
Louisiana judge (click here) temporarily blocked the transport of burned items linked to a Texas Ebola victim who died last week.
District Judge Bob Downing issued the injunction Monday afternoon after state Atty. Gen. Buddy Caldwell requested a temporary order to keep the incinerated items out of Louisiana....

The items should be incinerated and then the ashes buried in a sealed landfill that is exclusive to any reentry of future needs. The incinerator has to be a closed system such as a crematory where there is little to no venting to the outside air. In other words, the burning facility should have a facility that achieves a certain temperature that would allow very fast burning without the escape of ash or possible microbes. What goes in doesn't come out in anyway. An open fire has to be outlawed and isn't.

October 10, 2014

State Rep. Joe Deshotel today asked Veolia Environmental Services officials for a briefing on how the Port Arthur-based industrial disposal company came to be in contact with the state about incinerating material that might have been contaminated by the Ebola virus from a Dallas apartment.
Six trucks bearing 27 containers of household goods, cleaning material and cut-up furniture were to be delivered either last night or early today to the Veolia incinerator on Texas 73.
The items were from the Dallas apartment where Thomas Eric Duncan fell mortally ill with Ebola virus he contracted in Liberia earlier this month....



Anyone who does is open for social ridicule.

There are far to many moving pieces in handling an infectious disease.

Currently, when this disease is presented to President Obama, he is talking to an empty chair in his Cabinet. 

I've been following the fear mongering and it is completely false. 

The fear mongering goes like this, "If President Obama didn't allow those workers from West Africa into the country Duncan wouldn't come here looking for a cure."

The people brought back from West Africa were meticulously handled to not infect anyone along the way. There has not been a care giver on the jets contracting Ebola. In addition, the people brought back to the states were Americans, they have a right to be here. Their families are here. The State Department was correct in facilitating their return.

Mr. Duncan has a fiancee in Dallas. End of discussion.

Amazingly there is not one family member from his apartment that has contracted this disease yet. They must be tuned to the disease in West Africa differently than most.

Nurses have no power in a top down heirarchy of care.

This is not a simple complaint about the way hospitals are run these days. The CEO sets policy at the bedside, it's ridiculous. When a nurse wants to move a patient to isolation the order has to come from a physician and then only with specific qualities. Isolation would demand higher costs of use by one patient and the hospital 'system' scrutinizes the actions of the 'hired help.' 

...Conflicting reports (click here) abound in the press and social media about Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas’ ER staff failure to correctly diagnose the late Thomas Eric Duncan on his first visit there Sept. 25. The differing accounts have focused mostly on individual, institutional or technological culpability.
First we were told that the nurse in the emergency room hadn’t properly communicated information about the patient’s travel history to physicians. Then we were told that physicians had not read the nurses’ notes that were, in fact, entered into the hospital’s electronic health record. Then we were told that the hospital’s electronic health record would not permit the doctor to read the nurses’ notes.
As the Internet chatter escalates, people continue the blame game. For example, why didn’t the nurse arm-wrestle physicians into paying attention?...

The CEO of the hospital system has priorities set and then the medical and nursing administration is suppose to apply those priorities to patient care. The nurse has a great deal of responsibility in modern day patient care, but, has no authority to carry it out when it deviates from a 'cost effective paradigm.' A nurse's license don't mean that much anymore. As a matter of fact the medical profession would rather replace nurses with medical technicians because of cost. The benefit of a nurses rather vast education is under utilized.

A medical technician can't assess. Nurses spend a great deal of time in education learning to assess the patient. Medical technicians are primarily glorified nursing assistants. The nurse is always the first to see the patient in any setting. Their are triage rooms in ERs now and the person in charge of that room is a nurse. There really isn't any reason for slip ups, especially considering the Dallas Hospital just was 'in serviced'/taught about the protocol the staff was suppose to consider for Ebola.

This is not the problem ONLY of the hospital in Dallas. In Boston, the possibility of finding an infected patient is proving to be effective, but, the hospitals in Boston work differently. The nursing personnel can remove a patient from the population when the patient fits the criteria. The patient is then RULED OUT of testing positive for Ebola rather than being RULED IN. There is a huge difference in that paradigm. Boston is having more frequent false positives and that is okay. That is the way it is suppose to work.

When a hospital system limits the 'care activity' a patient based upon a doctor's order rather than a nursing judgement they are literally removing the authority of many care givers possible of the assessment to one. The nurse patient ratio is dissolved in a top to bottom heirarchy whereby all care is based only on doctor's orders. Frequently, a top to bottom heirarchy is based solely in PAYMENT from insurance companies. In other words, every nickel spent on patient care bleeds rather than having the billing to insurances reflect optimal patient care.

DRGs still live and in far to many hospitals they are god.

Boston hospitals spend money on patient care and ask questions later. I guarantee you their billing offices are lined with very tough folks, both in payment by insurance company and payment by deductibles.

I am not surprised nurses in Dallas turned to unionized nurses in California. Hospitals with unionized nurses don't put up with much. 

There is a difference between a 'doctor's hospital' and a 'nurse's hospital.' In a nurse's hospital the CEO decorates the halls while the care is administered on the basis of nursing assessment which occurs on an ongoing basis. 

It is interesting that today a unionized nurses organization now has the responsibility of being a support to peers without empowerment. Very interesting.

Massachusetts also had 'care for all' longer than any state in the country. It has concentrated on 'effective care' with a full payment system reflecting that patient care for far more many years than any other health care in any other hospital.