Friday, February 26, 2010

Why would anyone prefer to be scared and miserable?

I made the mistake of trying to tell an American email friend that practically everything the US media say about the British health service is simply not true.

They do not throw out premmie babies.

They do not throw out old people.

The do treat you for cancer if you're old.

They do treat overdoses.

They don't have a spending cap per person.

I know this because I've lived it.

And then there's the stuff you can find on the Internet in about 5 minutes. Stephen Hawkings is British, not American. Brits live a year longer than Americans on average.

Of the bits I can check for myself - not trusting journalists or politicians of any party - everything the Republican party says about the British health service is a lie. EVERYTHING. This doesn't prove to me that the democrats are right about health care or anything else, just that the Republican party is full of liars.

Here's the answer I got. (Hang onto your hat.)

"I will never, ever in my entire friggin life understand whites. Sheila, if a baby is born as much as 3 months early, the child is given every chance medically possible, without regard to expense. Many don't make it, but they're given the chance, not tossed in the waste can or whatever Euros do. I have 3 elder in my father's longhouse who are centenarians. Most of the people where Shirley works are in their 80s and 90s, and all of them still go out, still party, still love to live. We live far longer than most euros because the US is the top in medical care, not Amsterdam-health-care, not hitler's health care where he had the elderly dragged from their homes, then the disabled, and then the jews and christians and killed to enrich himself. Please note that wealth Canadians come her for care.

The death toll comes from the preemies dying, from Hispanics who lived under socialized health care dying when barely in their 50s, from Native Americans who are allowed to die under socialized health care here.

I had an operation and had to have it. Had I not, i could have gotten gangrene from a botched operation a STATE (socialized) hospital. I went to the best, Geisinger, a private hospital. It cost 37,500+ dollars and someone who took an interest in my need forced the state to pay most of it. Had it been up to the socialized health care we have (AKA welfare) I would have died.

Tell which of my family should be lost first? the dems are going to get half the funds from the elderly, the disabled, and as two famous American nazi families were the ones to put him in office--Kennedy and soros--I can foresee a time the Jews will also be dragged off. But us red niggers will go first. the dems always dreamed of a day they could do that. Why else did they destroy the homes of the Navajo elders? 27 died because of it. 9,000 Tarahumara died, and nothing was done. 15,000 Tohono--I have friends on the border who impoverished themselves to save them from the PORI in Mexico, to no avail. How many Moskitos Indians died and the dems castigated Reagan fort helping them? How many dead redskins will it take before the europeans running the show here are happy?

How long? Life is sacred in any religion but not where these creeps can make a buck. Money is the name of their game, not life, not helping people."

I was surprised for several reasons and not just at the breathtaking rudeness or lack of logic. He's scared, and the savage verbal attack follows from that.

I'm used to people blanking out bad news. As in, "Lump, what lump? I certainly don't need to get the doctor to check out this lump." People sometimes prefer short term happiness to good information.

But this guy's refusing to hear good news. State run medicine isn't automatically dreadful medicine. What's so terrifying about that? Why would anyone prefer to be scared and miserable rather than well informed and less worried?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Los Indianos

Author and friend in Los Indianos, Santa Cruz de la PalmaAuthor and friend in Los Indianos, Santa Cruz de la Palma

In Santa Cruz de la Palma, the highlight of Carnival is Powder Night - Los Indianos. This commemorates the people who emigrated from La Palma in the 1940s to 1970s and especially those who came back rich.

An Elegant Lady, Los Indianos, Santa Cruz de la PalmaAn Elegant Lady

Anyone can join in the parade. You just dress up in white, maybe have a suitcase full of Monopoly money, and for some reason throw vast quantities of talc at each other.
When I say "vast", the town hall gives out something like six tons of it to people in the parade, and one supermarket was selling 25 kg sacks.

A Not-so-Elegant Lady, Los Indianos, Santa Cruz de la PalmaA Not-so-Elegant Lady

When I lived in Santa Cruz, you could follow the progress of the parade by the cloud of talc drifting above the four-storey buildings on the route. Once the parade finishes, there's dancing in the street (of course) and a fun fair, which my son loves. Not surprisingly, we had a great time.

Batucada (percussion) in Santa Cruz de la Palma, Los IndianosBatucada (percussion) in the Plaza EspaƱa

Monday, February 08, 2010

A Beautiful Poem

The small man
Builds cages for everyone
He Knows.
While the sage,
Who has to duck his head
When the moon is low,
Keeps dropping keys all night long
For the

Hafiz, an Iranian, Sufi poet from the 14th century.
(I found this on Chris Guillebeau's blog, The Art of Nonconformity)

Loathsome Alyce sold to Wily Writers

Wily Writers has just accepted my story "Loathsome Alyce" to be published later this month. So I'm doing the happy dance again.

A Great BBQ and an Amazing Sunset

A glorious sunset over PuntagordaA glorious sunset over Puntagorda

Yesterday I set off for the almond blossom fiesta in Puntagorda. When I arrives, I phoned my friends in Franceses to see if they were in the village too. Well, they were, but at their friends' barbecue, so we agreed to meet up later.

Before I'd even left the car, they phoned back with an invitation to the barbecue. So I went, and I had a great time.

Chairs and shadows at sunsetChairs and shadows at sunset

And we had the most wonderful sunset. It even cast these lovely shadows on the walls of the house. And once the sun itself had disappeared, the sky looked very like the surface of Jupiter.
(The photos of the Almond Blossom fiesta are up at A Small Rock in the Atlantic.)

The surface of Jupiter?The surface of Jupiter?