Tuesday, January 24, 2006

"A Million Big Lies" Is What Mr. Frey's Book Should Be Called


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

I have a sister who made a deal with Spielberg to make a movie about her life only the story she told his writers was about 80% fake. When various people contacted me to confirm her tall tales, I got increasingly angry as they disregarded my hard information making hash of her fantasies. This happens all the time, especially if one has famous or interesting parents like mine. We all make mistakes when telling stories but Mr. Frey, for example, concocted stuff out of thin air just like my sister, sensationalizing things maliciously.

From the NYT:
To Oprah Winfrey, the power of James Frey's memoir, "A Million Little Pieces," lay not in whether the author really spent three months in jail, as he claimed, or whether he lost a lover to suicide.

Rather, she said in her now-famous call to CNN's "Larry King Live" on Jan. 11, where Mr. Frey defended himself against accusations that he falsified significant parts of his life story, it was the author's story of recovery, a rebirth that took place within the walls of an addiction treatment center, that provided "the underlying message of redemption" that resonated with her.
Oprah, unrepentant, she is like Dan Rather, a fake who pretends to care about the truth but can't be bothered if it messes with her TV show.

Dan Rather and I had a big row back in 1999 when Sixty Minutes broadcast my sister's lies. I demanded to know why the vaunted 60 Minutes team couldn't spend five minutes looking for background information. It isn't like they never heard of me and I live in NY, am easy to reach and willing to talk on camera.

He told me, "We don't need your side of the story."

The pig.

My sister played this con game where she told her Hollywood friends she was a genius unrecognized by her own family. As the one who chiefly raised her, being the older sister, I had a great record of how many music lessons and tutoring she had over the years. She had a splendid education. I called her, "The Baby Mozart" when she was only three, recognizing her musical skills which were tremendous.

She was also a manic/depressive. But she discovered when she was in her mid thirties that everyone was looking for hidden talents in people of low intelligence but high talents after that movie, Forrest Gump, came out, box of chocolates and all that. So she remade herself into an idiot savant, a girl who skipped highschool to attend a university, pretending to be thought as a weak minded person. I was shocked. When her psychiatrist called me to scold me for not recognizing her hidden talents, I said, 'What? She studied composition at the University of Arizona!" The psychiatrist accused me of lying.

"My sister made her living acting on Star Trek, for crying out loud," I said, in amazement. You wouldn't recognize her, she played an alien. My mother used to joke that she lived in outerspace. Well, telling Hollywood and the publicity machine that they were being conned by an actress only made them dig in their heels worse rather than re-examine their flawed facts.

Well, now my sister, who is very unstable, emotionally, spent all the money Spielberg forwarded her and is now in a mental health clinic...for drug abuse. I wonder if she will tell anyone the truth about that, either. Probably not. For Hollywood prefers fantasy over reality.

The pain this has caused my beloved parents is hard to describe since sensationalism meant she had to villanize them. And me, mostly by pretending I didn't exist. I have seen this in other famous families.

I used to live with one of the sons of the author of a tremendously famous musical and so, was terribly rich, as you can imagine. One day, the elder brother published a book about his childhood. I was at the reception. My friend took his brother's book and looked up his own name in the index, laughing, until he saw, there was only one sentence refering to his existance in the entire book. He complained to papa.

So Papa put down his wine glass and flipped through the book. Within minutes, he was enraged. "What do you mean by THIS!" he roared. This began a fight, papa and the younger son leaving rapidly.

"You should be so lucky he didn't write about you too," said papa as we left.

It took a long time to reconcile the family. What a waste.

With the Frey book, he lashes out at an addict clinic with all sorts of stories about being beaten up. So far, all the stories about him being beaten have been proven false and I am certain his other tales are ditto, though I begin to wonder if maybe he should have had a beating or two to straighten him out.

But then, America is led by liars who pretend to be heroes while really AWOL asses and who mock real warriors with purple bandaids and accusations of cowardice. Ptui on them all.

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Saturday, January 21, 2006

Alzheimer's Disease: New Causes Discovered, Nerve Cells Die As They Divide


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Alzheimer's disease, the living hell, when the brain's ability to think is destroyed, systematically, is a terrifying disease. Researchers have made a new, startling discovery that the platelets that clog the nerves are due to the nerve cells dividing only half way and then dying. Next: to find the trigger setting this process off.

From Health Day News:
Scientists reporting in the Jan. 18 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience said the neurodegenerative disease may be triggered when adult nerve cells, or neurons, try to divide.
*snip*
Cells divide through a process called the "cell cycle." In most cases, neurons usually do not participate in this process, however.

"In regular cells, like in bone and blood, the cells divide. But brain cells do not normally divide," Tagle explained. "The great majority will not divide. The neurons you're born with are pretty much what you have at end of life."

When adult nerve cells do enter this cycle, however, they will die rather than complete the division. "Cells become stuck in the process of cell division," Tagle explained.
This is very interesting. This disease strikes many, geniuses on down. I have known quite a few people who died of this disease.

One thing I have noticed is the oldest memories are the last to go. One case, I was helping the wife of a sufferer of that disease pack things as they prepared to move to a nursing home. Her husband barely spoke now. But when I walked into the room with his teddy bear which he put in the attic in the 1920s, his eyes lit up. "Teddy!" he said, and like a child, he took his teddy into his lap and began to play with him. He told me several stories about how he tore Teddy's ear, how the nursie sewed it back on again, how they snuck outside to play. As soon as he spoke all this, it seemed to close down and that is the last he remembered.

Within a year, he died, age 96.

I find it interesting that even with the breakdown of the mind, the earliest memories remain, sometimes, a person recognizes no one but maybe one person and nearly always, that person is someone who is very much like an earlier replication. My grandfather was convinced I was someone in the family from 1890. He would wonder why I was dressed so oddly but decided this was just his imagination. He refused to recognize his own daughter for he thought, towards the end, he was a young 14 year old.

Some people try to cope by constantly asking for information which they desperately try to cling to, in many cases, these are people who ran the house in earlier days and can't change the habit of always being "in the know." Then there are roamers who think, since they went out every day to work, they should do this with urgency.

So far, there is no medication or fix for this disease but knowing what events lead up to the breakdown is a clue, like following the thread through the dense maze, there, in the center is the Minotaur, the cause of this whole thing, the trigger, the break in normalacy.

I have known more than one sharp 100+ year old, they are rare, very rare, but there is no reason why we can't all live the same way, no reason at all. Which is why stem-cell research is so important, not that pre-alzheimer brain dead people like Bush can figure this out.
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Millions of Mentally Ill Get No Meds, Must Now Pay If Poor


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

My husband is brain damaged from work, poisoned by toxic chemicals. He is well covered by our lawsuits and our medical insurance. But he knows many men who depend on Medicaid for meds at the hospital and they are all suffering from this stupid program started by the GOP and the corrupt lobbyists in DC. This is an unfolding tragedy deliberately created by greedy monsters.

From the New York Times:
Mix-ups in the first weeks of the Medicare drug benefit have vexed many beneficiaries and pharmacists. Dr. Steven S. Sharfstein, president of the American Psychiatric Association, said the transition from Medicaid to Medicare had had a particularly severe impact on low-income patients with serious, persistent mental illnesses.

"Relapse, rehospitalization and disruption of essential treatment are some of the consequences," Dr. Sharfstein said.
My husband's hospital was prepared for this disaster since the people running the program there seem to all be pretty liberal. But this is costing the hospital dearly, of course. They didn't lobby for this dumb bill. They didn't want it! The entire system is on the verge of collapse. Back in the Reagan days, they swiftly closed most asylums across the nation and the die off of the mentally ill was ferocious for a decade. It is still ongoing. If one can't find safety in a strong family like my husband has with his loving parents and loving wife and step children carrying him along day to day, they die. It is that simple.

In my husband's circle, the men get help from various agencies like the Catholic Church or various daycare facilities run by the county or the state, this being a blue state, we still have a social safety net despite Republican attempts at destroying it.

But they need these meds. One day, half a day, without them, and the collapse can be pretty steep, I assure you. Living alone is dangerous because it is easy to miss meds or not tell if one is falling apart. To have to cope with a ridiculous system that is deliberately designed to be impossible to penetrate is pure evil.

The elderly and the poor are being deliberately destroyed here. This is not accidental, it is part of the Great Die Off when our rulers throw overboard anyone and everyone who can't fulfill slave duties.
At Dayspring Village, in the northeast corner of Florida near Jacksonville, the 80 residents depend heavily on medications. They line up for their medicines three times a day. Members of the staff, standing at a counter, dispense the pills through a window that looks like the ticket booth at a movie theater.

Most of the residents are on Medicare, because they have disabilities, and Medicaid, because they have low incomes. Before Jan. 1, the state's Medicaid program covered their drugs at no charge. Since then, the residents have been covered by a private insurance company under contract to Medicare.

For the first time, residents of Dayspring Village found this month that they were being charged co-payments for their drugs, typically $3 for each prescription. The residents take an average of eight or nine drugs, so the co-payments can take a large share of their cash allowance, which is $54 a month.

Even after the insurer agreed to relax "prior authorization" requirements for a month, it was charging high co-payments for some drugs - $52 apiece for Abilify, an anti-psychotic medicine, and Depakote, a mood stabilizer used in treating bipolar disorder.
Nickle and diming the very poor to death. How charming. Like cannibals, the K Street lobbyists and their super rich clients, the big insurance and drug companies who have huge towers like in Mordor, gazing balefully over the DC landscape, their multi-multi millionaire CEOs flying around in mega jets and sailing their mega yachts, they need every penny they can squeeze from the very poor or ditch them into pits after extracting any gold from the teeth, this monstrous attitude is what I call "Naziism".

The patient tax payer paying for this farce is being fleeced, too, and is being tossed onto the scrap heap of history only we will get a taxpayer revolt which these revolting men will turn onto the victims of this scam: the mentally ill, the poor, the elderly.

Hitler did this. He killed them first, even before killing Jews and then killing everyone in his path. Once these monsters unleash their own inner insane beasts, they can kill many, many people.

And no, they won't take their meds, either.
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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Locked Up In A Room Alone: The Hidden Psychological Collapse Haunts Japanese And Americans


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

The New York Times ran an interesting but incomplete article this week about Japanese children and young adults locking themselves in a room for years and years and refusing to even see their own parents. This is not just a Japanese problem, I know of cases here in America. It is simply hidden from view, obviously.

From the New York Times:
Next to us was Shuichi, who, like Takeshi, asked that I use only his first name to protect his privacy. He was 20, wore low-slung jeans on his lanky body and a 1970's Rod Stewart shag and had dreams of being a guitarist. Three years ago, he dropped out of high school and became a recluse for a miserable year before a counselor persuaded him to join New Start. Behind him a young man sat on the couch wearing small wire-frame glasses and a shy smile. He ducked his head as he spoke, and his voice was so quiet that I had to lean in to hear him. After years of being bullied at school and having no friends, Y.S., who asked to be identified by his initials, retreated to his room at age 14, and proceeded to watch TV, surf the Internet and build model cars - for 13 years. When he finally left his room one April afternoon last year, he had spent half of his life as a shut-in. Like Takeshi and Shuichi, Y.S. suffered from a problem known in Japan as hikikomori, which translates as "withdrawal" and refers to a person sequestered in his room for six months or longer with no social life beyond his home. (The word is a noun that describes both the problem and the person suffering from it and is also an adjective, like "alcoholic.") Some hikikomori do occasionally emerge from their rooms for meals with their parents, late-night runs to convenience stores or, in Takeshi's case, once-a-month trips to buy CD's. And though female hikikomori exist and may be undercounted, experts estimate that about 80 percent of the hikikomori are male, some as young as 13 or 14 and some who live in their rooms for 15 years or more.
Many teens have this problem---starting in Jr. High, the vicious ones prey on the weaker ones, the sudden surge of harmones emboldens those who have social powers to go on the hunt to destroy or at least intimidate the weaker children. We all remember Jr High, don't we? I recall a girl who had to sew her own clothes being teased by rich, spoiled Country Club girls who lived in a semiresort in Arizona called..."Country Club Estates". Natch.

My solution was simple. I told the rich girls to lay off or I would punch them out after school.

I hated Jr. High, didn't think High School was much better, when I left on my 16th birthday, scholarship in hand to go to an university, I couldn't leave fast enough. Looooved the university! But all these transitions are difficult for many young people. And one can see why. Children can be very esquisitely cruel and their parents secretly encourage this. As an adult, when I had to deal with these same kids when my own went to school, it was infuriating, how nasty well to do adults could be. No wonder many of their children were cruel brats.

Our children tend to commit suicide or better still, shoot up the school and blow themselves away, too, or they use drugs which are easy to get. In Japan, drugs are hard to get so they resort to suicide or shut themselves away and live on the very rich fantasy world outsider Japanese artists have painstakingly constructed. Being psychological/social outcasts, the animators and writers of the alternate world fearlessly draw and make stories about all sorts of matters, especially magical/technical matrixes.

There is a lot of longing and wishful thinking in Japan due to the near total social collapse of the nuclear family. Many anime stories deal with this collapse, unlike the general population which tries hard to pretend it isn't happening. Despite a rich library of stories and artwork concerning the derth of children, loss of potential brothers and sisters, bullying in school, fear of being trapped as a cog in the bureauocracy, Japanese society churns along its set path heading towards disaster without deviation or examination by those running this vast, deadly machinery.

The illustration for this story I made are scenes from this lovely and funny anime about a shut in boy who is forced to begin interacting with the world by the efforts of some very self-centered and sometimes quite violent but tremendously loving dolls: Rozen Maiden Like many shut-ins, the boy, Jun, communicates with the outer world only through his computer and this is how he ends up with a magical set of dolls who can enter into his dream world and interact there as well as his waking world.

They force him to confront his psychological fears, one battle is him killing a monster which turns out to be made all of paper---the tests he took over the years. He is a very bright child like most hikikmori, and as he looks at the tests as he picks them off the ground, he remembers what happened.

He did very well in the beginning and the teachers praised him so the other students attacked him behind the teacher's backs so his scores could drop to their level. As someone who aced tests easily from day one, I can assure you, this process is very much at work in America, too, and the refusal of both the Japanese and American systems to deal with this in a creative way never ceases to amaze me.

Anyway, there is another well animated scene in Jun's dreamworld where he climbs a mountain of school desks and then they collapse. And talking flowers attack him, mocking his learning efforts. When he wakens and must venture into the real world, they show his torment and struggles to even go out the front doorin an amazingly true way, his increasing weakness and head spinning, crawling the last few feet to the front door.

Obviously, Japanese animators are interested in this mental illness. As usual, the NYT makes no mention of this, talking only to doctors and families of victims. I know from families here, they often just hope the young person will come out of the room and be "normal" suddenly without either themselves or their families changing.

Well, I can tell you this, I dealt with my difficulties by going out with a vengence. I took up political activism with a determination to use it to cease being isolated, cease being alone, cease being a victim. I decided to take action and take it to the streets.

Japan used to have activism, too, but it was smothered to death and now there is nearly none, just atomized, lonely, helplessness. Reminds me about here. When we had the few antiwar demonstrations in DC, I noted the energy, joy, running literally around, back and forth, of so many young people, dressed up for action and primed to make a loud noise, drumming drums and yelling.

South Korea doesn't have nearly so bad a problem with hikikmori as Japan and no wonder. The youth there go to many demonstrations, they will travel thousands of miles to demonstrate and they do this with verve, energy and lots of noise. They even fight! And the Chinese!

Watch out. They are very energized now. Ready and raring to go. Europe is waking up from soft dreams, too, but then, look at the Muslim world.

It is abroil. Literally fighting tooth and nail and dying in great numbers because they believe it is very important to go out and do something, anything, everything. The world wants to lock them into rooms and throw away the key. But they are taking the doors off the hinges.
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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

9/11 Heroes Are Now Rapidly Dying of Lung Disease And Mercury Poisoning


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

The 9/11 heroes are now rapidly dying, one after the other, of black lung disease and mercury poisoning. All this could have been avoided if we did the right things during the clean-up but the EPA was ordered to lie about toxic dust.

From Associated Press:
James Zadroga spent 16 hours a day toiling in the World Trade Center ruins for a month, breathing in debris-choked air. Timothy Keller said he coughed up bits of gravel from his lungs after the towers fell on Sept. 11, 2001. Felix Hernandez spent days at the site helping to search for victims.

All three men died in the past seven months of what their families and colleagues say were persistent respiratory illnesses directly caused by their work at ground zero.

While thousands of people who either worked at or lived near the site have reported ailments such as "trade center cough" since the terrorist attacks, some say that only now are the consequences of working at the site becoming heartbreakingly clear.
So many Americans, especially the right wingers and the Republicans, screamed they would never ever forget 9/11. Alas, they have already forgotten.

You see, aside from Bush's inner circle who well know they are awfully complicit in this great crime, are also even more obviously complicit in this developing tragedy. Namely, I remember very clearly, the EPA doing a few feeble air quality tests several blocks away from that death disaster and saying, all was well, which was a rank lie even at that point.

And the air at the WTC itself was hideous. Not only did it burn for many days, the frantic efforts to remove everything, typical when a crime is committed and people want to hide the evidence, the Feds encouraged everyone to work swiftly to remove absolutely everything without any environmental studies, nothing, no planning, just remove it all, pronto.

Frantic to do something, anything, the real heroes, the simple people who worked day after sad day, digging and digging even though, rationally, no one could have survived the utter disintigrating, broiling mess, after day five, the rescue work should have been stopped and everyone stepping back to reconsider how to deal with this unprecedented situation.

So far, all the 9/11 dogs are dead. They set their brave noses to the debrie and sucked in all the filth. Their passing has been hardly noted by the media. Their handlers are in hardly better prospects! They, too, took in all this dangerous dust and one by one, they, too, are becoming sicker. The firemen and police who worked there for several months, they are dying rapidly, too.

Mercury poisoning is very bad. Unlike ordinary buildings demolished by explosives, which are totally empty and many dangerous things stripped out first, this was a fully occupied group of buildings that were chock full of hundreds of thousands of computers. These have many toxic chemicals and when the building turned to dust, so did everything and everyone inside, nearly nothing was larger than a teacup when the collapse was done except for some exterior strut work.

More than one person on the outside begged the government to stop the hasty work, no orders were given to force workers to wear appropriate gear, namely, asbestos removal suits! These men, covered with dust, returned home and scattered it all about and lord alone knows how many of them with small children will see them die of lung or cancer diseases in the next 20 years?

Even the truck drivers who took this dust to Staten Island and New Jersey are falling ill rapidly. Like a pebble dropped in a pond, the ripples of death will move remorselessly outwards, taking more and more people. Like the nuclear tests that were the equivelent of WWIII during the fifties to the early sixties, today's cancer epidemics are distant ripples of that reign of terror.

And the depleted uranium we spewed all over the Middle East: that, too, is spreading death to Iraqis and Americans, deformed babies to each and all, in evil unison.
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Old King Niall (O'Neill) Was A Merry Old Soul...Many Children, Too


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Genetic researchers have discovered that many Irish people have descended from one legendary king. This means they are all royalty, or at least, a royal pain in the ass. Genghis Khan left many kids behinds, too. Then there is Abraham, and look at how his children do quarrel!

From Reuters:
Scientists in Ireland may have found the country's most fertile male, with more than 3 million men worldwide among his offspring.

The scientists, from Trinity College Dublin, have discovered that as many as one in twelve Irish men could be descended from Niall of the Nine Hostages, a 5th-century warlord who was head of the most powerful dynasty in ancient Ireland.

His genetic legacy is almost as impressive as Genghis Khan, the Mongol emperor who conquered most of Asia in the 13th century and has nearly 16 million descendants, said Dan Bradley, who supervised the research.
First of all, he must have been one busy hostage. Back then, they set the women guard over hostages. Bet the men wondered about all those redhead tots running around.

Then he became King and the red heads went bezerk, too. The Vikings, 500 years later, were very fond of the redheads and often took them away as slaves and often ended up, even with the male slaves, making close relations because they admired their cleverness and quick minds. As well as other things which extended the genetic field.

My son said, "Well, my ancestor had 12 sons just like the legendary king, too." Speaking of Abraham's son. Actually, old Abraham had only one son and all the people in the Middle East deserts trace their lineage back to either son, so out of two came many bitter rivals from the very beginning, no less.

As genetic studies probe ever deeper, it is amazing how many legends and tales end up being proven true. One funny example was a village in England, they found a bog body and used the genetic markers from it to see if that person had any descendants and lo and behold, within the very same village, 2,500 years later, the school teacher was exactly that person! In other words, his family had lived there since the Ice Ages. Genetic studies of inhabitants of the Alps has the same results. Many of the families still there were nearly always there.

The Basque people of Spain are such a grouping, probably living there since 30,000 BC or earlier. Genetically as well as linguistically seperate from the Plains People who speak the various Indoeuropean languages.
Niall reportedly had 12 sons, many of whom became powerful Irish kings themselves. But because he lived in the 5th century, there have been doubts the king -- who is said to have brought the country's patron saint, Patrick, to Ireland -- even existed.

"Before I would have said that characters like Niall were almost mythological, like King Arthur, but this actually puts flesh on the bones," Bradley said.

When international databases were checked, the chromosome also turned up in roughly 2 percent of all male New Yorkers.
And you can find them all on St. Patty's day, in Manhattan.

Another interesting genetic study: From the Independent:
Spanish scientists are to test the DNA of hundreds of Catalans with the surname Colom to determine whether Christopher Columbus, far from the Italian gentleman he has long been believed to be, was in fact a pirate born in Catalonia.

The experiment, in determining whether any of the participants are related to the pioneering explorer, is designed to clarify the disputed origins of the man who made landfall in America in 1492.

While historians have mostly assumed that Columbus was an Italian born in 1451 in Genoa, a persuasive counter-lobby argues that the mariner who pioneered the Spanish conquista was in reality the Catalan Cristofol Colom, who airbrushed his past to conceal his activities as a pirate and conspirator against the king.

About 120 Catalans are to donate samples of their saliva this week to a team of geneticists headed by José Antonio Lorente Acosta, the head of the laboratory of genetic identification at Granada University.
Well, on the Pettit side of my family, I, too, have pirate blood. Shows up sometimes in odd ways, do love hip high boots and swinging swords. Columbus certainly acted like a pirate, wherever he went, he demanded gold. He kidnapped natives. He was a pretty nasty character.

My ancestor enjoyed the Caribbean, too. All those Spanish gold, too. Didn't do him any good, of course. Did pay for some property in Western Massachussetts, town of Peru.

Ever wonder why a town was named after the processing place where gold was stamped before being carried to the shores of the Caribbean? Heh. Avast, matey.
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Monday, January 16, 2006

The Drug Lobbyists' Lovely Drug Bill Is Belly Flopping Badly


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

The insane drug bill with many provisions to funnel money to insurance companies and drug dealers who lobby Congress so heavily is now seen universally as a total failure. So it will bankrupt America while not providing any real services. Way to go!

From the NYT:
With tens of thousands of people unable to get medicines promised by Medicare, the Bush administration has told insurers that they must provide a 30-day supply of any drug that a beneficiary was previously taking, and it said that poor people must not be charged more than $5 for a covered drug.

The actions came after several states declared public health emergencies, and many states announced that they would step in to pay for prescriptions that should have been covered by the federal Medicare program.
The program was supposed to get health care to Americans but in reality, it was designed to thwart Americans and in the end, kill them. The red states in particular, seem to want all those pesky people who can't work because they are ill, dead. More charitable, mostly blue states, want to at least appear as if they are helping people and the great mass of American people probably are wondering why we can't do what Chile has done recently.

Namely, vote for something better.

From Zmag:
(Noam Chomsky speaking) "Democrats read the polls way more than I do, their leadership. They know what public opinion is. They could take a stand that's supported by public opinion instead of opposed to it. Then they could become an opposition party, and a majority party. But then they're going to have to change their position on just about everything.

Take your pick, say for example health care. Probably the major domestic problem for people. A large majority of the population is in favor of a national health care system of some kind. And that's been true for a long time. But whenever that comes up -- it's occasionally mentioned in the press -- it's called politically impossible, or "lacking political support," which is a way of saying that the insurance industry doesn't want it, the pharmaceutical corporations don't want it, and so on. Okay, so a large majority of the population wants it, but who cares about them? Well, Democrats are the same. Clinton came up with some cockamamie scheme which was so complicated you couldn't figure it out, and it collapsed."
Single payer plans which much of the civilized world uses is o-u-t in America. This is because the sharks feeding on the body politic want more flesh and blood. Whether we live or die is immaterial to them.

Lobbyists have tremendous power in the USA system. The media and businesses that lobby all have a very strong, vested interest in this corrupt system. The Abramoff scandal freaks them out because it exposes their underhanded ways and they are anxious to make him sound as if he were singular, the lone bad guy in this den of thieves and prostitutes. The media refuses to connect any dots or uncover any connections that lead back to them and their own agendas.

Meanwhile, people are dying.

One thing about medicines: they are being touted as the cure-all and end all of most therapy. The desire to simply pop a pill has undermined sane, healthy lifestyles. Even heath nuts love to pop pills. Magic, magic, who has the magic bean?

Living a healthy, strong life is difficult in this culture. This is why a diseases which are entirely due to bad lifestyle choices are raging through the community, raising the cost of health care. Popping pills won't stop unhealthy eating or living from killing oneself! As an organic gardener, I assure you, what you eat matters. Instead of curbing the use of heavily processed corn sugar to sweeten things, the law can mandate the end of this practice since the obesity epidemic pretty much began with the heavy use of corn syrup and hygrogenated fats in processed foods.

Fat chance this will change!
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Friday, January 13, 2006

I Remember Franco's Death: Like Sharon, They Pretended He Was Alive


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

When powerful people face Death, the Great Leveler, they and their followers usually go to extraordinary lengths to pretend they didn't really die. Jesus' devoted followers are a classic example of this. Many religious groups cling to this sort of thing. Many political leaders end up in the same eternal boat, never dying.

From Yahoo:
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's failure to wake up from a coma nine days after suffering a massive stroke does not bode well for his recovery, some doctors said Friday.
It is interesting, watching the doctors and all the people involved in Sharon's power base, refusing to look at reality. Every day, the same bulletin was issued that he was waking up because he jerked and arm and a leg which is just plain silly, even snakes do this hours after dying. Chickens can run in circles with their heads cut off before dropping.

Large mammals, and I have put down some in the past, move quite a bit even after a .45 blows out the brainstem, even. This is the nervous system reacting to final electrical charges.

The heart can beat long after the brain is dead. One can keep a very badly damaged brain dead person alive for a very long time and they will possibly blink or jerk around, even as they have no real brain left as we all saw last year with the Schiavo affair.

Or Bush, for that matter.

Anyway, when Sharon, a very overweight old man, had his first stroke, the pretense that he could continue his bloody passage through life was a fool's dream. Now, after massive hemmorages, it was lunacy to think he would simply leap out of bed and be hale and hearty.

I nursed a child who had a brain hemmorage. He was saved and grew up and did well in life but was in a coma for six weeks but he was young and very fit when the hemmorage occured. Old people, well, we got to play the game of life, we wear out our welcome and eventually, no matter how much we may like to continue forever, the Grim Reaper comes a'calling. And you can't lock him out.

Since ancient times, rulers tried to lock him out, even trying to kill their entire entourage to go with them if they went, ahem, warning to all loonies who want to worship people, it is very dangerous! Anyway, they built huge tombs and filled them with loot, all in anticipation of extending their pleasures eternally.

The alternate route is to deny the person died and pretend they live forever, only believers can see them or understand this wonderful event, this desire to have eternity in a specific way is the root of more than one major and many minor religions.

Obviously, no one would like to join my religion. "He's dead, Jim."
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Saturday, January 07, 2006

Ballet Dancers On Strike In DC--Refuse To Be Danced To Death


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

The tragic fairy tale of the Red Shoes whereby the girl is forced to dance to death inspired a movie called "The Red Shoes" with Moira Shearer in the lead role. Many girls who watched this movie wanted to be a dancer like her. But not the "dances to death" part.

From the Washington Post
Kennedy Center President Michael Kaiser has offered to mediate the bitter and drawn-out contract negotiations between the shut-down Washington Ballet and its dancers' union, but the ballet's leadership has rejected the idea, an official confirmed yesterday.
*snip*
Dancers and management returned to the bargaining table this week for the first time since the ballet announced Dec. 23 that it would cancel two future Kennedy Center engagements as well as one at New York's Joyce Theater, citing a lack of funds because 12 performances of "The Nutcracker" had been canceled.

The profitable "Nutcracker" run was scrapped beginning Dec. 15 when contract talks broke down and the dancers, frustrated at the slow process, told management they would not dance without agreements on job security and safety issues relating to what they say is a high injury rate. Management refused to negotiate on the dancers' draft of an "interim" agreement and shut down the production, claiming the dancers had threatened to strike.
*snip*
The dancers view management's actions as a lockout, but they recently learned their unemployment claims have been denied, meaning they will be without pay while the company is on hiatus, said AGMA local representative Eleni Kallas.

A major issue for the union is maintaining the size of the company. Dancers view this point as a health issue, arguing that cutting dancers will lead to overwork and increased injuries for the rest. Management's refusal to negotiate on a proposed requirement of a minimum number of dancers is evidence that "nobody really cares" about the dancers, Kallas said.
Good old flat earth productivity! Maybe they could outsource the Nutcracker to India! Let them be sugarplum fairies.

Really, this "productivity" stuff is just another way of saying, "work them to death, this way we can force them to eat the effects of inflation!" Namely, not only do you get paid less and less due to money becoming more and more worthless, you have to double the work to make up the loss of income for the corporation!

One way of doing this is to hire ever cheaper labor. Of course, musicians and dancers can't be easily replaced at the top ranks of the profession and the Kennedy ballet dancers are up there, not as high as NYC but close. Strikes are breaking out all over the performing arts thanks to inflation.

From CBS News:
A showdown devoid of holiday cheer loomed at Radio City Music Hall, where management debuted its annual "Christmas Spectacular" Thursday with recorded music amid a bitter labor dispute with its orchestra.

Some patrons emerging from the debut told WCBS-TV they weren't even aware the orchestra wasn't there and the music wasn't live.

"We didn't even realize it was canned until we asked somebody at intermission," one said. "I couldn’t tell, and we come here almost every year."
That is pretty sad. I certainly can tell if an orchestra is real and not a recording but then, I am trained to be on the stage (and had to use canned music which isn't nearly so much joy as a live orchestra!). Broadway musicals and plays have been ruthlessly reducing the number of musicians and they fight with the unions all the time, the goal is to have zero human input on a daily basis, might as well make robots to play the roles, too.

Heck, the Japanese are hard at work on that very thing.

There have been other dance strikes and this causes a lot of bitterness between the performers and the choreographers. Right now, ballet is in the doldrums, no great creators anywhere as far as I can tell, some fine dancers but no real guiding light like Balanchine or Martha Graham, just to give two of the brighter lights that no longer shine.

Dancing is hard work. The hours of preparation before a performance, tuning down afterwards, the sacrifices and hardships of ballet dancers are legendary. Literally bleeding as they remove the toe shoes. Just like in the movie. Dedication, the stringent ban on eating pretty much anything, like models, their refrigerators often have only yogurt and bottled water! All this and now they will be asked to dance double performances!

A good way to shorten their careers.

Meanwhile, sports stars rake in ever more cash. While the grinding need to cut expenses are inflicted upon the lower ranks there, too. As inflation increases, this will get worse for all of us.
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Monday, January 02, 2006

Bush Is Cockeyed Drunk


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Yesterday, after drinking heavily alone at home, Bush went to a hospital to hand out Purple Bandaids to all the soldiers who really went to war unlike himself or Cheney. Look at the picture here. He is obviously stewed to the gills, literally cockeyed.

From Catch.com
President Bush began the new year on Sunday at the bedsides of wounded servicemen and women, and awarded nine Purple Hearts to U.S. troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
....
Bush spent the past week relaxing at his ranch where he rode his bike, cleared brush and prepared for his sixth year in office. He and his wife, Laura, and her mother, Jenna Welch, stayed at the ranch on New Year's Eve and had a steak dinner.
The president had a two-inch scratch across the left side of his brow.

"As you can probably see I was injured myself, not here at the hospital but in combat with a cedar," Bush quipped. "I eventually won."
All his private times, when he is under stress and goes off to hide in his spider hole, Bush always, always, always gets "hurt" in the head. He "falls" or "doors hit him" or "food causes him to faint" but every time, look at the photos, he is smashed on drink.

Here is the defintion of the word "Cockeyed":
Foolish; ridiculous; absurd: a cockeyed idea.
Askew; crooked.
Intoxicated; drunk.

Yes, drunk. And in this photo, I drew lines since the photo is square-on, showing he is significantly cockeyed! The two corners of his mouth are even and the bottom of the eyelids are even but the pupils are way off. And as usual, he conked his head while staggering about because his eyes can't focus.

His drooling, hanging mouth is just like after all the other famous drinking binges like the pretzel incident which happened when he was watching the Super Bowl alone.

This lunatic is worse than Yeltsin, who was obviously rolling out the barrel all the time, too. And since Bush can launch WWIII or drive us into a Great Depression, allowing him to blast away the last remaining stem cells, drinking, isn't a smart choice and indeed, are grounds for removing him from office.

He should be impeached for gross incompetence. Not to mention war crimes, treason (selling us to the Japanese, for example, is high treason no matter how you slice it!) and of course, the spying and outing CIA agents and all the rest.

Arrest him. Put him in an insane asylum. Ship him to Bagdad.
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