REPUBLICAN HEALTHCARE DISSOCIATION
Jonathan Chait in New York magazine tried to explain the reasons many Republicans believe women should pay more for healthcare than men:
”Women have, on average, higher lifetime medical costs than men, which means a market-based insurance system, where every individual plan is priced based on that person’s expected medical costs, will charge women on average higher premiums.
“Republicans have been dancing around this implication for years with their argument that people who don’t need prenatal care should not have to buy insurance that covers it.”
And, of course we all know men having nothing to do with the reason women need prenatal care. Right?
You can read more here.
THE MOST EXPENSIVE SPICE IN THE WORLD
You can probably guess which spice it is but even if you can, the video is still enlightening.
OWLS AND THE NAPA VALLEY VINEYARDS
According to the YouTube page, one of the best-kept secrets of Napa Valley wineries is that they rely on barn owls rather than chemicals and pesticides to keep rodents at bay.
”Wildlife biologist Carrie Wendt has spent years learning how these majestic nocturnal creatures can have productive, working relationships with winemakers. So the next time you take a sip of that California pinot, take a moment to thank our feathered friends who helped make that glass possible.”
217 REPUBLICANS REFUSE JOY REID'S INVITATION
I realize that the firing of James Comey has buried news of the Republican healthcare bill this week but that hadn't happened yet last Saturday – it was still hot news then.
MSNBC weekend host, Joy Reid, reported that she and her staff contacted all 217 Republicans who voted in favor of the execrable American Health Care Act (AHCA), asking each one to appear on her program. Not a single one said yes.
Could it be, maybe, shame?
SHOULD WE REQUIRE INTELLIGENCE TESTS FOR CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES?
Moving right along on the subject of Congress, on 5 May, Republican Representative Raul Labrador of Idaho had this to say at a town hall meeting with constituents:
If you missed that or can't play the video, Representative Labrador said, "Nobody dies because they don't have access to healthcare."
Who ARE these people who supposedly represent American citizens?
MELISSA MCCARTHY'S SEAN SPICER SINGS I FEEL PRETTY
Actor Melissa McCarthy began her impossibly wonderful impersonation of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Saturday Night Live in February. Tonight, she is hosting that show and here is how the producers are promoting her appearance.
Don't skip this. It is funny, wonderful (and short):
SOCIETY AT ITS BEST AND WEIRDO PARFAIT
For the past week there has been severe flooding throughout Canada. Although I expect Canadians everywhere are good Samaritans, this story from reporter Tyler Dawson gives new faith in humanity:
”There were no soldiers filling sandbags or heaving them into trucks on rue Saint-Louis on Monday morning. Just regular people, of all sorts and of all ages, shoveling from two big piles of sand into green bags and hefting them into the backs of pickup trucks.
“Civil society at its best.
“Before I’d even got my boots on, someone drove by, asking if this was the spot to help out. A steady stream of people, some lugging shovels, made their way to loading area to help. An efficient passing line had sprung up to lift the bags into the trucks, a sort of organized chaos that seemed absent any particular leader or organizer.
“Somehow, everyone seemed to know where to go.”
You can read the rest of the story at the Montreal Gazette and view the video there.
Thank doctafil of Montreal for sending this item. You probably recognize her moniker, as she has been a frequent contributor in the comments at this blog for many years.
Almost all of Brenda's short stories are based on incidents in her life in Montreal and her frequent travels to Florida and other points of the world. She has a wonderful way with words - when she writes about how much her feet hurt, you feel it too.
”I removed the bonfires. I mean shoes...” she writes in The Shoes the Bus and the Music. “I should have snapped their necks like stale bread sticks, tossed them into the a dumpster, and gone home barefoot...But I had to squeeze the monstrosities back on...”
Of course, she had me with her story, New York City Walk, in which she perfectly describes the energy of the city that I miss so much:
”...New Yorkers doing their usual walking, shopping, looking, buying, arguing, laughing or playing. The city is crazy busy with people wearing oddball outfits, weird hats.”
Brenda volunteers a lot, especially with old people, so there are several stories about that including a lovely one titled, Everything Nothing Something, about a 90-plus year old woman that will break your heart in the best possible way, and reveal the best of Brenda too:
“'The truth is [says Bella], I don't want to leave my home, but you think I have options, huh?'
“'Bella' [says Brenda], 'as long as you have your marbles and can afford to live in your home, you've got this covered.'”
Weirdo Parfait is available at Amazon in paperback and a Kindle edition.
JOHN OLIVER ON NET NEUTRALITY
On May 1, I wrote about the newest attack on net neutrality and what it means for internet users (less access, higher charges). Now, the brilliant John Oliver and his staff to the issue.
When he did this last time net neutrality was threatened three years ago, so many of his audience followed his instructions to tell the FCC to keep net neutrality, they broke the FCC website.
That happened again this week (this episode was broadcast last Sunday night). Take a look at it – Oliver is serious and as always, so funny about it.
As Oliver explained in the video essay, the FCC made it so difficult and obscure to navigate to the page where citizens can leave their thought, he bought the URL, gofccyourself.com.
It is up and running as I write this on Saturday. To get to the FCC comment page, go to that URL, click on the word, “express” after which a new page will open where you can fill in the form and let them know that support net neutrality and Title 2.
Again, here is the procedure – Oliver had made it easy:
- Navigate in your browser to gofccyourself.com
- Click the word “express” on the right side of the page
- Fill in the form to support net neutrality and Title 2
Do it, please, to help save the internet for everyone.
UPDATE: 7AM PDT: As Nana Royer notes in the second comment below, the FCC is not taking comments for a week or so. Here is the explanation from Oliver at that URL:
Hello! Because of a procedural quirk, the FCC will not be considering any comments on the issue of net neutrality that are submitted over the next week or so. We'll update you when the comments are officially open again. In the interim, you’ll have to find something else to be mad about on the internet. Best of luck with that.
Ronni again: I'll remind you when it's up and running again.
FRANKIE, THE TRUCK DUCK
This video is nearly 10 years old so perhaps you've seen it. I hadn't and it is so cute, so funny and so nice that it is worth resurrecting.
Interesting Stuff is a weekly listing of short takes and links to web items that have caught my attention; some related to aging and some not, some useful and others just for fun.
You are all encouraged to submit items for inclusion. Just click “Contact” at the top of any Time Goes By page to send them. I'm sorry that I won't have time to acknowledge receipt and there is no guarantee of publication. But when I do include them, you will be credited and I will link to your blog IF you include the name of the blog and its URL.