Friday, April 14, 2017

On being fat

As we come to the weekend of my favorite candy (how superficial of me, I know), I want to make a comment or so about....being fat.

As of this morning (ok, this afternoon as I didn't get out of bed until 1:05pm), I weighed in at 357 pounds. This is 15 pounds heavier than I was this time last year and more than 40 pounds lighter than my highest ever. The entirety of my weigh gain happened over the fall and winter as I spent time in Chicago and did not keep my exercise regime, nor my overall eating habits.

What are my eating habits?

At home:

Within 1 hr of waking up - Breakfast: 8 oz of rice, corn or oat cereal with 8-9 oz of whole milk and 7 oz of cranberry juice (low sugar)
4-5 hrs after breakfast - Lunch: 3-4 oz of meat, 2-3 oz of cheese, 3-4 oz of veggies
5-6 hrs after lunch - Dinner: 8oz of meat, 4-5 oz of veggies, jello or ice cream for dessert.

I drink 32 to 48 oz of lightly flavored water a day.

For snacks I have two different types of protein bar, plus fruit cups (no sugar added) - but I often eat neither if I'm busy

Away from home:
I keep to my basis schedule but tend towards favorites:
lunch = soda and hotdog w/ketchup
dinner = if at a sit-down restaurant, my dinner is usually much like it would be at home. Fast food might be spicy around chicken.

I don't generally have any gluten (wheat) at home: no bread, pies, pasta or wheat cereals. I tend to stay away from soy also.

My A1C in Feb was 5.3. My sugar at testing was 86. My blood pressure at last dr visit (a week ago) was 127/78. This is just a touch high for me, but my resting heart rate was 70 and temp was 96.7. I do not have high cholesterol or triglycerides. Liver, thyroid and kidney functions are all well within norms.

Yesterday I walked over 2.5 miles. I have walked over two miles four times in the last 10 days. I will do so at least twice more in the next week.

Every step I take SUCKS.

I have been working on learning/doing yoga (only twice this week, both times between 10-15 minutes. I haven't been on my bike this year.

Why all this information? I'm fat. I don't expect people to like me, or consider me 'beautiful' because or in spite of being fat. I don't have body issues. (gawd the guy that asked me to turn out the lights because he did almost ended the evening right then and there!) Come on people.

I look at thin people not out of jealousy, or 'self loathing'. I appreciate their appearance without denigrating my own. I am who I am and what other think of me...I. DON'T. CARE. But, I also know that being fat takes more effort by my body. But after almost 20 yrs of being fat, my body is NOT showing signs of that wear and tear on me. My hips and knees are in good health. But I do recognize the effort it takes to move.

My surgeon said that had I weighted the 397 I was 6 months prior to surgery, I would have most likely died on the table. However, given that he only gave me a 50/50 chance of survival and a 10% chance of walking again, I'd say that once again, people look at me and assume I am unhealthy.

Most people are fat because, systemically, they are unhealthy and their body reflects it. I think getting fat does not make us unhealthy, being unhealthy makes us fat. That will be contrary to 'common wisdom/understanding' in the medical community - but consider how much of that has been wrong in the last 50 years.

By all medical understanding currently espoused, I should be hypertensive, have diabetes, and arthritic joints. I think the medical community has cause and effect wrong and therefore are treating the wrong things. I watched a hypertensive diabetic die. That is my take away from it.

Call me fat. I am. Don't call me unhealthy. I am not. But I reject SOUNDLY the idea that people demand to be considered beautiful REGARDLESS of their appearance. If you need that type of affirmation, you are unhealthy in that space between the ears.

I like me and that comes across regardless of how I 'appear' and yes, I do clean up nice.

BTW, had my nails done, cut & color on my hair and am heading for the beach in my swimsuit this weekend. I too will be body watching!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Not the Mainstream...

How to comment on this.....??? Transgender bathrooms.

IF, and it is a huge, insurmountable (IMO) IF, we had a way of defining transgender specifically to those that need the liberty to act according to their intended gender, then I would be supportive. What that means is that it is not enough to 'identify' as transgendered, it has to be diagnosed and be medically followed. It is formalized in something called the medical Standards of Care.

The 76 or 98 or 24 'genders' that the Left has pronounced as 'needing recognition' all but eliminates any chance that a rational approach to transgender needs and liberty is possible - certainly not from the Federal Government.

People actively undergoing transition need some protection, but to change the entire society so that 1/10 of 1/10 of the population can be 'safe' is nuts. The current 'open door to claims of trans' leaves a gaping hole in the safety of women and children.

Sorry, but identity politics goes too far when it is perfectly acceptable for a white woman to 'identify as black' and gets LAUDED for doing so...

Do not get into the 'there are only two genders and you are born and will die in the same one' with'll lose.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Comments on Diversity report

A news article on a study about diversity efforts got me into a discussion with a proponent. He argued I needed to read the report, which I did. I am offering the bullet-point commentary here in order to facilitate the discussion.

1. Correlations - not causation
2. Does an all minority firm out perform?
a. None available to determine
b. yes: then the marketplace will deal - more investment in out-performing companies
c. no: is there a tipping point? vs the current level?
3. interior Culture and performance demands different than existing exterior culture norms
4. Affirmative action impact on retention - ie no AA standard in performance kills AA standard in initial hire
5. 170 firms offering info are self-selected. Those with positive results tout, those with negative don't
6. I ABSOLUTELY reject % of population to % within company. failure by absence is not evidence of failure
7. Tech sector is more oriented towards technical competence than personal interaction (personal experience too)
8. Google is going after more STEM support in schools - I absolutely support - but not via affirmative action
9. Knowledge base failure within study: limited data and evidence. as Econ grad, I understand the limits of such a data pool
10. Reports rely upon 'feeling of what seems to be working'
11. A significant study of 700 companies = no positive effect on diversity efforts and may hurt Black women
12. "...efforts to isolate impact of female leadership was inconclusive" BUT LOOK!!! 9% HIGHER VALUATION!!
13. Due to minority population size, areas/fields that aggregate significant minority representation removes diversity from elsewhere
14. Women in STEM has decreased as the # of 'programs' in sociological studies increased...related?
15. What the study calls bias I call animosity - not of hatred but of 'not what I have seen work' bias via work experience (arguably false sometimes.
16. Diversity training = no positive effects so....
17. ...switch to 'unconscious bias training' - but may have same longterm results - NONE. Recall Hawthorne Study.
18. pointed out WIPRO as example - also in my business plan as a foreign competitor
19. regression analysis bar for significance = .10 this is a low bar though not 'significantly' outside the norm. But the study never indicates how FAR over that bar the results were. .11, .15. These are 'noticeable' however, given the sample size, NOT USEFUL.

All in all, the study takes a minor blip and runs like the wind with it.

Other issues. 70% of Black children are born out of wedlock, 60% of Hispanic. And these are long term trends. These populations are NOT going to create a pool of STEM candidates for the industry as a whole. Only the top 1% or less will reach excellence levels necessary for prominent positions in corporations. By the measure of calculating populatio = 30% likely to succeed, you get the 3.5-4% representation of Blacks in the tech workforce.

Diversity in corporations doesn't change culture and diversity in culture is NOT beneficial. Understand I used the term CULTURE.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

My idea for health care - from the Proposed Federal Budget

Hospitalization Program

Right now hospitals all over the country are billing patients for services rendered but because Medicare and managed care programs have agreements on reimbursement rates, those hospitals are functioning with approximately 54% of those billed revenues. One way hospitals have dealt with the issue is to have patients spend less time in the hospital. I will not say that hospitals are discharging patients that should still be in the hospital, but I bet it is happening.

With one in five of its elderly hospital patients re-admitted within a month of discharge, the federal Medicare program plans next year to reduce how much it will pay hospitals for certain preventable re-admissions.1

Using information on hospitals in Washington State (, I looked at expenses and patient distribution (mix of inpatient and outpatient emergency).2 Given its general good outcomes, I looked at the actual expenses per patient day (a mixture of case and patient types), how many patients were being seen, the number of beds and the population size that the hospitals serve. The type of hospitals and communities they serve cover rural and urban settings. Generally, Washington is in the middle of most medical spending/outcome metrics. Using the information available, including the number of hospitals and beds per state and averaging the expenses I came up with an alternative to Medicare funding.

Eliminate Medicare funding3? Right now, hospitals are functioning on 54% of the revenues they bill. If hospitals could replace their current billing system and all the administrative expenses associated with Medicare and managed care cost shifting and at the same time have a steady source of income, the net savings could replace the entire contribution of Medicare and state Medicaid funding.

By offering the following and managing a 100% consumer participation rate, hospital systems would receive approximately the same revenue as their average expenses.

On average, each adult pays $140.39 and each child pays $46.80 per month (varies from state to state – See Appendix B).
Premium payment is made to the hospital of the adults choice and could vary from hospital to hospital (allowing for competition).
All hospital care, either outpatient or inpatient is covered 100% for plan members.
Hospitals establish a fixed daily cost for non-plan patients (same for inpatient or outpatient).

However, plan participation is not mandatory and no matter how good the deal, there will be people that won’t, or can’t pay the premiums. The Plan includes a Medicaid grant from the Federal Government set at 25% of the 2010 total expenses for each hospital. The grant requires that the STATE reach an average 75% participation rate to qualify and the grant does not go down if the participation rate is higher. So the hospitals and the states will have an incentive to increase participation rates as high as possible - the grant money can be used to cover unemployed or chronically ill patients. The grant will cost about $117 billion a year. A realistic goal is that on average, participation will be between 80 and 85%. Currently 83.1% have some form of insurance.4

Provider Plan

Like to the Hospitalization plan, doctors and other general health service providers could begin offering a similar plan to their patients. The cost might be as low as $7.25 per month per person5. By creating a plan similar to the Hospitalization Plan, doctors could institute programs to manage illness within their practices and to stabilize costs. A family of four could have a doctor and hospitalization plan for $475 a month. The average premium paid for individual health insurance coverage in the United States in 2011 was $2,196 per year, $183 per month; families paid an average annual premium of $4,968 or $414 per month.6 Because the average health insurance plan has a deductible, an individual would pay $183 a month for the insurance and could still face hospital bills of up to $2,935, or another $245 per month.

The Plan creates incentives for people to participate, for hospitals to manage costs and focus on patient retention and for both parties to manage health care. Consumers have the ability to change hospitals and doctors that fail to live up to their standards or who don’t manage costs well. Because the cost of seeing a doctor or going to the hospital is fixed, patients will have an incentive to see the doctor or go to the hospital before situations become critical. Hospitals and doctors would have incentives to offer wellness programs to lower utilization needs.

As for patients with chronic illnesses, the hospital costs determined above was based on the total of the annual expenses based on their inpatient/outpatient mix. It includes patients that are treated and released and those that spend significant time as inpatient. Because payment for services is not based on specific length of stays, hospitals and doctors can manage their patient’s care for the best outcome rather than billable limits.

For people that do not participate in a plan, the hospitals will offer a fixed cost for outpatient or inpatient care. Insurers may offer plans based on the fixed cost rate, but no one will be able to offer it less expensively than the hospitals. In general, the annual cost would be less than a single day as inpatient or a single trip to the Emergency Room.

For individuals or families that opt only for the Hospitalization Plan, their occasional trip to the doctor would be out-of-pocket as would everyone’s prescription costs. Walmart’s prescription plan has driven the cost down for many people but new, name brand drugs can still be extremely costly. Hospitals and doctors could form purchasing groups for specific drugs that handle chronic illnesses. By putting patients back in control of their medical spending dollar, market forces can help alleviate some of the costs.

We don’t have insurance for oil changes, or replacing tires, bulbs, filters or painting the siding. We maintain our homes and autos, provide the fuel and energy needed to run them. We have car (and homeowners) insurance to protect us from the rare events that cause their destruction or loss. Health insurance that does not consider the age of a person or pre-existing conditions is the same as insurance purchased after the accident or home fire. It is an attempt to share the cost of events, exactly as Medicare does now. The result would be the same under Obamacare except that it mandates, requires, everyone to buy insurance. This is still cost sharing but spread over everyone.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Plan for graduate school

Many years ago I attended the University of Illinois at Chicago and was studying economics. I was considering graduate school until I pissed off a professor that would eventually become the Dean of the Department and who's recommendation I would need for grad school. Oh well, choices have consequences.

But prior to that whimpering end to my graduate schools hopes.....I was considering two areas of research.

First: I disliked the way productivity was defined. I wanted to see if there were alternatives that worked better and were more accurate. It was going to be a very technical and highly focused (not likely to see the broader light of day!). But something worthwhile to me.

Second: Innovation was something interesting to me. Why did we have thousands of years of human civilization but it took almost four thousand years to go from the wheel (yes I know it existed prior to that) to the train? To the car? Why did 'innovation' explode in the 1700s and 1800s and absolutely hit hyperdrive in the 1900s?

One factor, to some, strangely, is calories. How much food a population has on a regular and predictable manner. And is there a level? Generally - and I was working on a way to prove it - a population as a whole needs about 1200 calories a day, year round, consistently in order for innovation to begin showing legs.

But is not just calories for the population, there seems to be a necessary amount of population required too. A town of 50 with sufficient food stocks is not anywhere nearly as innovative as a city of 500,000 with the necessary calories.

Of course, the larger the population, the greater the food supply must be.

Finally, there seems to be a need for stress on a population. How much, what type, the source were all things I wanted to look at.

More recently I have looked at another factor. Why is Western Culture generally more innovative? What tends to set it apart?

Anyway, nothing in particular prompted this post. Several minor interactions all lent themselves to recalling what interests me, academically.

Oh, and I THINK I am being told to stop trying to focus on a private project. We will see over the next couple days if that is an accurate reading of the tea leaves...

Wednesday, February 01, 2017


I have promised something on Trump for a while and I have spent time trying to write something without sounding demeaning or dismissive.

Fourteen months ago I said I supported Trump's run for the Presidency. It was a recognition that he was saying what lots of people had been saying for eight years. I thought that if enough people BELIEVED him, he had a chance. There was plenty of evidence to suggest that Trump was a narcissistic opportunist but I had learned back in 2007/8 election season that it isn't enough. Fred Thompson was of the same vein but he quickly fell to the side because, fundamentally, his gut wasn't in it. Running for President IS a narcissist thing - you have to see yourself as THAT KIND OF PERSON to be at the top of humanity. But it takes a corresponding belief in yourself.

I know of arrogance. Many of you that have known me are nodding your head. But the belief in one self has to be as strong as the skill. Thompson didn't have it and the rigors of a campaign (and the virulent hatred from some quarters) was just too much. Trump almost seems to gain strength from both the people that cheer him AND the people that jeer him. I KNOW that opposition doesn't slow me or drain me. It invigorates me.

The Devil doesn't appear to people because 1) it doesn't need to - people will do many evils of their own free will, 2) to do so would prove the existence OF GOD. The old phrase, slightly modified, better to keep quiet and let people doubt than to appear and remove it.

There is NO GREATER validation of a position than able opponents seeking to fight against it. This is a fundamental truth very, VERY few ever understand. And I saw a similar dynamic with Trump. The fight against able opponents is proof. "Belief" in doing the right thing becomes knowledge.

I named this Blog the Moderate Mainstream because I firmly believe that my positions are the same as the 60% of the people in the middle of our society. Twenty percent to the Right, twenty percent to the Left and the vast majority in the middle. And Trump was talking to that majority. But, would they believe him? I wasn't sure, but I was willing to support what he was saying. I joined and worked for the Cruz Campaign because it appeared he was going to be a finalist and of them, I thought the GOP would coalesce around him and forsake Trump. That never happened. The GOP flailed around for five months hating Cruz but hating Trump more. If it had gotten behind Cruz in April, it would have been over for Trump.

I talked to people that had been on the Cruz campaign in NC and IN and the vaunted ground game was an illusion. I saw it in CA, or rather didn't. When he quit, Trump's organization was there and doing things Cruz's never did - it supported THE VOLUNTEERS. It wasn't rah rah Trump, it was, what do you need from us? The hard work and effort by so many on Cruz's campaign was, seemingly, out of devotion to Cruz. The support for Trump was out of agreement with what he SAID. Cruz was the embodiment, Trump was the voice. The distinction is more obvious to me now than it was last May. But I could see results. The only question: Did enough believe what Trump was saying and that he would DO what he said.

As the summer wore on, Trump seemed to relish the fight. Every attack was an opportunity to do battle. The Left called it 'thin skinned' and many on the Right agreed. Afterall, the Left was used to slapping the Right and it was used to turning the other cheek. Here was someone that slapped back EVERY TIME. It shocked the Left and the Right...well, it just wasn't polite. Imagine that people are so prissy that when they get bitch slapped they all but thank and walk away. The way you deal with bullies is that you PUNCH BACK TWICE AS HARD - EVERY TIME.

The Left has bullied the Right for so long it is the only way they know how to work. Trump demanded a fight. COME ON!!

For people that had been bullied, or seen it happen, Trump wasn't a bully, he was FIGHTING them. Damn! I finally saw that dynamic over the Summer and knew at that point, he would win. The only question was how close would it be? Could the Left's perpetual vote gaming be the deciding factor? I wavered back and forth all Fall. I was sure he COULD win, but not sure he WOULD win.

The interesting thing about the voting booth - people do what is within themselves. I didn't watch or listen to any news until 9pm that night. When they called Florida, I knew.

Everything Trump said, he has done. So far. It can change, might. But not without a fight.

Another truth that seems lost on people: Trump is going to do what is in his best interest. For some reason people think this is bad. His apparent 'best interest' is the same as mine. Doesn't mean you always do what you want. For a couple of decades people said what was good for GM was good for the United States. Trump wants liberty and less government interference in his dealings. He has all the wealth he wants. If he does things in Office that increase liberty and limits government, it benefits him, his family, AND the Moderate Mainstream.

He has tied his well-being with the well-being of the Country. Imagine that. What benefit did it have for the American people to bomb Libya? What benefit did it have for us to reach agreement with Iran? How much of what Obama did benefited him politically at the expense of the United States. How much of what Trump has said has 'hurt' him politically even if it was an 'inconvenient truth'?

The NUMBER ONE position of the Cruz supporters that were NEVER TRUMP (and that is most of them) was the Supreme Court picks. Trump has made his and I don't know ANYONE, nor have I heard ANYONE say the pick was less than 'conservative enough'. It is early. Something might come up in the next weeks to change minds, but I doubt it.

Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell better learn one thing fast: when Trump jumps in to battle the bully Left or to fight the good fight, nipping at his heels from the Right will get just as quick and harsh slap from him. Get in line or he is quite willing to let you hang out there by yourself. Does this mean Congress should fall in line? No. Engage Trump 'one on one' to get Congress' point across. Trump doesn't concede, but he will step back out of the ring if you've landed a point. But once the Left is engaged, get behind him or else.

To those on the Left that are just dumbfounded he won - you have been delusional. Most of us never told you that you were - it wasn't worth the trouble and your beliefs didn't matter in the long run. Obama put lie to that, but it was clear he was only setting the table. Clinton would have been the Great Destroyer. Clinton was going to do what SHE WANTED. Libya was all her pushing it.

Donald Trump is not a politician. He is "just an American" that wants to do the right thing. He talks like the Moderate Mainstream. He walks like the Moderate Mainstream. He will govern like the Moderate Mainstream. That will piss off the Left AND the Right. But that is ok. Trump and many of his supporters, like me, relish the fight - not to beat, but to win. Winning is good!

One more thing is yet to be on the table. I hope to see it in the next couple of weeks. It is 'due' next Monday. Trump's Budget Proposal for FY2018. If it is one dime less than last year, it is a gauntlet thrown down with Congress. If Trump wins, the Moderate Mainstream wins.


Friday, November 25, 2016

The Alt-Right

Much has been said and written about the Alt-Right, little of it from the Alt-Right itself. I've been interested in and in a minor way participating in conversations with others in the Alt-Right for much of the year. Much of what is written about it focuses on a single issue to the exclusion of all else and often with a slant that ignores both the context and spirit. So, I will share what the Alt-Right has written and my comment about it.

1. The Alt Right is of the political right in both the American and the European sense of the term. Socialists are not Alt Right. Progressives are not Alt Right. Liberals are not Alt Right. Communists, Marxists, Marxians, cultural Marxists, and neocons are not Alt Right.

What is meant by "Political right"? In context it means a political view oriented towards individual liberty and limited government. It supports capitalism and in the United States, government constrained by our Constitution. In the past (actually, even now), Conservatives politically have been the political form of individual liberty and small government. But in the last twenty years, many have supported larger government that is more interventionist - both individually and geopolitically.

For much of the last 40 years we have discussed Conservatism as a fusion of traditionalist and libertarian viewpoints. Gay marriage is an example: libertarian point of view is that people have the liberty to choose their mates while traditionalists point to historical precedent and social constructs. (They argue the social constructs are based in biology - but we are not animals bound by our biology...) Using government to impose one viewpoint on individuals where there is no Constitutional foundation creates tension. The other variation (popularized during Reagan years) is the three-legged stool: fiscal, social/traditional, and hawk/defense conservatives. The problem has been that the GOP has not shown fiscal restraint, we have over-reached militarily and our social mores have been broken (family destruction). The stool has no legs and fusion has fractured.

2.The Alt Right is an ALTERNATIVE to the mainstream conservative movement in the USA that is nominally encapsulated by Russel Kirk's 10 Conservative Principles, but in reality has devolved towards progressivism. It is also an alternative to libertarianism.

The Alt-Right seeks to reassert the originalist point of view of individual liberty and limited government by not supporting global interventions militarily, limited government generally, fiscal restraint and established social norms. It does not support the free-wheeling libertarianism but is much more traditionalist.

It seeks to reassert societal norms established by historical precedent - such as national borders, limited immigration, individual racial groups, familial bonds and limited (to no) global intervention, either militarily or via trade yet to be both absolute and resolved not to compromise for any reason. To establish a strong but independent national identity.

(Additional note: I have my own issues with Russell Kirk's Ten Conservative Principles and have written a response to them elsewhere)

3.The Alt Right is not a defensive attitude and rejects the concept of noble and principled defeat. It is a forward-thinking philosophy of offense, in every sense of that term. The Alt Right believes in victory through persistence and remaining in harmony with science, reality, cultural tradition, and the lessons of history.

Alt-Right does not seek to impose its views but rather is clear that history has been unrelenting in defining what works. When society departs from normative behavior (such as homosexuality), those societies fail from the inside and become weak in the face of outside forces. When diverse cultures are put into close proximity, it invariably leads to significant conflict as each culture attempts to maintain/attain superiority/dominance.

By pointing to historical precedent the Alt-Right does not need to establish an authority for its positions - those foundations are there for anyone to see. Its foundation is not in a belief system - though that exists - but rather in human nature. Rather than deny or dismiss it, Alt-Right embraces our human nature, what it argues is inevitable, human nature will always win no matter how long or how much damage is wrought trying to deny it.

4. The Alt Right believes Western civilization is the pinnacle of human achievement and supports its three foundational pillars: Christianity, the European nations, and the Graeco-Roman legacy.

Alt-Right looks to the last couple thousand years of human history and notes three factors have driven human progress to this point:
1. Establishment of the rule of law. Most of human history can be defined by "might makes right" or "rule by man". The strongest rule and everyone submits to their whim. But starting generally with the Greeks and eventually leading to our Declaration of Independence and Constitution, humans have sought the stability and progressive (as it means to embrace everyone) nature of the rule of law.
2. Concurrent with that process has been a dominance of European nations: Greece, Rome, Spain, France and Great Britian. Although China and Japan (and prior to the Greeks, Egypt) have dominated their regions, it was the European nations that spread out both economically and culturally well beyond their borders. The reach of the British Empire is evident even today as Canada and Australia continue to exist as part of Great Britain. Except for the nature of their American colonists, Britain today would span the globe. The European culture embraces (until relatively recently) the rule of law and traditional mores.
3. Christianity. It is hard to speak of European history and culture without recognizing the influence of Christianity - either as a foundation or formative influence, Christianity is part of the individual, rule of law, social normative foundations. To dismiss or diminish its role is to ignore history.

Combined, Alt-Right sees these foundation stones as having reached their pinnacle in the establishment of Western civilization in general and in the establishment of the United States particular.

Looking at history generally - African culture has existed for eight thousand years, Middle Eastern culture has existed for six thousand years, Oriental culture for four thousand years and Western culture for three thousand years. Where has human progress been most productive?

5. The Alt Right is openly and avowedly nationalist. It supports all nations and the right of all nations to exist, homogeneous and unadulterated by foreign invasion and immigration.

Alt-Right explicitly states that nations have the right: to exist, to self determine, and to defend themselves. All nations. Not just those that are our friends or allies. It explicitly argues that each nation can establish its culture and enforce it however it chooses without interference (or violence) from others.

6.The Alt Right is anti-globalist. It opposes all groups who work for globalist ideals or globalist objectives.

It explicitly opposes globalism or one-worldism in whatever form - culture, economic, governmental or religious.

Both of these two positions are pretty self explanatory and clear. Nationalism is not for the powerful nations but for all nations.

7. The Alt Right is anti-equalitarian. It rejects the idea of equality for the same reason it rejects the ideas of unicorns and leprechauns, noting that human equality does not exist in any observable scientific, legal, material, intellectual, sexual, or spiritual form.

All men were created equal is used incorrectly so often it all but signifies the idea that a big lie is easier to get people to believe. I was not born equal to Andre the Giant, Albert Einstein or Nadia Comaneci. While we were all born human, with the same need to breathe, eat, drink, sleep and shit, with the same biological functions and design (bi-pedal, tool using, genetic compatibility) we most certainly have different abilities, strengths and ambitions.

I do not expect to BE equal, I can't (or shouldn't) be treated equally in context (situationally). We have attempted to create a system where our institutions (specifically government) do try to address us all the same, ie equally. But even that recognizes that we are different. That is why our court system is one of equity not equality. We should recognize our differences and not seek to create a system by which you put in diversity and output conformity. Equality of outcome is not only a bastardization of "all men were created equally" it ignores every single gene of human nature. It defines the very nature of societal failure. We have seven billion unique individuals on this planet, to suggest we are all equal is "unicorns and leprechauns".

8. The Alt Right is scientodific. It presumptively accepts the current conclusions of the scientific method (scientody), while understanding a) these conclusions are liable to future revision, b) that scientistry is susceptible to corruption, and c) that the so-called scientific consensus is not based on scientody, but democracy, and is therefore intrinsically unscientific.

Alt-Right specifically embraces science. Not the science of consensus (political whim) but the results of the scientific method. A science that reflects humanity's growing and changing understanding of the Universe. It rejects "the science is settled" except in those places where the "laws of nature" are well defined and established.

That is the foundation of the Alt-Right. I doubt many Conservatives or anyone on the Right would have a problem with it. That said, there is an inherent bias - almost all of the Alt-Right is found in Western Society. From this foundation flows the interpretation and philosophies. There is division/dividing lines/differences in what this foundation means for a 'movement'. What follows is what I think is the dominant strain/element, the part that gives Alt-Right its heft, its substance.

9. The Alt Right believes identity begets culture begets politics.

Alt-Right believes identity establishes your community, your place, which establishes the culture you exist within, which guides your politics. That this is true for everyone, everywhere. This transcends race, religion or nationality. And yet because we are our human nature, race, gender, ethnicity, and nationality are all dominant features of our identity that are all but impossible to deny or escape. Us vs Them is inherent historically and maybe genetically. Even when we escape one "identity" we often establish another to be part of. Most commonly via immigration.

Actually moving from one country to another does not always mean changing identities. We see immigrants waving the flag of the country they or their family came from, establishing aspects of the culture they left behind only geographically but not emotionally. People live with those that identify with their past, not their new, culture/identity. Those that immigrate to change their identity, to establish themselves in a culture they want to embrace, not change, seek to become different. To change into something different, and assumingly, better. That has been the lure and promise of the United States. To become American.

Who you are is the most important thing you learn growing up. It seldom changes once it is established no matter how much you want it to - it can, it does, but its influence is permanent. That is human nature and it is the foundation of our community, our culture and our politics. It is also why massive immigration of people with different identities, culture and politics are so dangerous.

10. The Alt Right is opposed to the rule or domination of any native ethnic group by another, particularly in the sovereign homelands of the dominated peoples. The Alt Right is opposed to any non-native ethnic group obtaining excessive influence in any society through nepotism, tribalism, or any other means.

Alt-Right believes most new immigrants do not seek to assimilate, no not seek to change, but to retain their identity, their culture, their politics but for a time to take advantage of our system. They are not immigrants but invaders seeking to plunder without the warfare. And the Alt-Right seeks to exclude them from our society because that is what they choose - to be different, to be exempt. When so many already here are fighting to survive, why are we inviting so many with no desire to assimilate?

Further, why should we allow those that do not seek to assimilate to gain power and influence within our own borders? A simple example: we are a nation of English speakers yet there are communities in our country where no English is spoken.

11. The Alt Right understands that diversity + proximity = war.

Diverse communities are fractured, not cohesive, and prone to conflict as groups seek to establish dominance. The greater the diversity the greater/frequent the conflicts. When large communities/nations with divergent cultures meet it almost always ends in war.

Islam is at war within itself and at war with the larger non-Muslim world. Ignoring or dismissing this reality is giving that culture opportunities to enter and fracture existing non-Islamic communities. We are seeing it happen in many communities in the United States with vast numbers of illegal Latino immigrants.

12. The Alt Right doesn't care what you think of it.

For a long time now people that seek to establish/claim an identity that opposes 'diversity' have been singled out and attacked as racist, bigoted, phobic. So long and so often have the attacks gone on that almost everyone (other than those seeking power) has stopped being affected by the name calling. It has culminated in two ways that have broken its claim of hatred:
1. If you are white, you are racist
2. If you are white, you are privileged

These claims are absolute and the only acceptable response is to bow and beg forgiveness and to offer restitution. Whether it was the final straw or it just coincided with the discontent associated with the economic malaise I leave to others. At this point most, if not all of the Alt-Right doesn't care what others say or think about them. If their mere existence is an affront to a culture then that culture is nothing the Alt-Right cares about.

13. The Alt Right rejects international free trade and the free movement of peoples that free trade requires. The benefits of intranational free trade is not evidence for the benefits of international free trade.

Personally, I support global trade - if for no other reason than we do not have everything I want or we need within our borders. However, the 'free trade plus open borders' crowd is a detriment to us and all countries. There are benefits to trading with other countries but not at the expense of our own population. A pan-nationalist approach might be more to their liking but it is an active argument on the Right across the board.

At this point I want to point out that NONE of what I have written about above is exclusive to the United States. Every country can (and should) accept the above. Generally, most people I know even if they have issues with a specific point, generally would agree with everything above. Yes, the Left would have problems with the diversity issue but history is a harsh reality.

I am going to skip this one for a moment to address the final two items and then I will come back to it.

14. The Alt Right believes we must secure the existence of white people and a future for white children.

15. The Alt Right does not believe in the general supremacy of any race, nation, people, or sub-species. Every race, nation, people, and human sub-species has its own unique strengths and weaknesses, and possesses the sovereign right to dwell unmolested in the native culture it prefers.

Alt-Right does not believe in the supremacy of any race, nation or people (or human sub-species). Each is unique and has its own strengths and weaknesses. I think that the Western culture is the best and I personally think the United States is exceptional (not just first among equals). But the Alt-Right does not distinguish one as supreme - neither nation nor race.

16. The Alt Right is a philosophy that values peace among the various nations of the world and opposes wars to impose the values of one nation upon another as well as efforts to exterminate individual nations through war, genocide, immigration, or genetic assimilation.

And it argues each nation is sovereign and should be free from outside interference.

Alt-Right also abhors war and explicitly notes one means to attain peace is to limit diversity and culture clashes. By limiting immigration and open borders, Alt-Right seeks to minimize war.

These two, like others above are pretty straight forward. However most readers with other bias' will read them and think "aw one thinks like that, it has to be a front, a false face." I would say, nope. I've read a lot and think that it is in fact true. There is no demand for diversity or conformity - be who you are, establish yourself in a community, support and defend that community. Avoid conflicts but don't shrink from attacks - attack back until the threat is permanently removed. Strength personally and within the community.

Number 14, the one the media and many others focus on to the exclusion of all else.

14. The Alt Right believes we must secure the existence of white people and a future for white children.

This is the culmination of the Democrat Party and Liberal politicians (here and in Europe). For decades the Left has promoted identity politics - each group supporting "it's own". Be it gays, Blacks or Latinos or women, your identity was your political badge. With the culmination of anti-White activists over the last two years, is it any wonder that a politician that explicitly argues for 15 of the 16 points of Alt-Right "principles" while ignoring every accusation of bigotry might win a general election among AMERICANS?

The largest identity in this country is white, as it is generally throughout the West. If you demand people vote their identity, don't be surprised if it works for the majority.

Identity politics only works for minorities when the majority can be cowed into supporting the minority demands, even when those demands are harmful to the community as a whole. This is a problem for the Alt-Right. When the minorities realize their hold is slipping (or gone) they have only two choices: submit to the dominant culture or violence. Undoing the decades of damage will be painful in many ways.

It can't be racist or bigoted for Blacks to demand Blacks conform/vote for Blacks, for women to conform/vote for women, for Latinos to conform/vote for Latinos and BE racist when whites conform/vote for whites. It just goes back to the 'being white is racist inherently'. People are both tired and disgusted that nothing they do or say makes a difference, only the color of their skin determines their social standing - exactly who are the racists here?

Here is where I break from the Alt-Right...and it might not be a break as much as a difference or divergent point of view. I am the first born of immigrants to this country. I was in lesbian relationship for 18 years. I have helped to raise an adopted baby girl from China. I am NOT demographically an Alt-Right. Yet, philosophically much of the foundation is something I can embrace.

It goes back to a difference I think only exists because the numbers NOW support it: immigrants to this country are not assimilating. Prior to the 60s or 70s it used to take everything and emotionally, intellectually abandoning the external components of your identity to immigrate. With very few exceptions, immigration was a one time, forever proposition. There was no ability to avoid assimilation, you had to in order to survive. Until recently those trips took days, weeks and even months to accomplish moving to another country. Yet, there were always enclaves of immigrants. Did that mean people didn't assimilate? On a case by case basis, probably. As a community, it tended to break down as generations grew up and moved out. It took time.

My parents didn't associate with similar immigrants - they fully embraced America and everything about it. They raised six American children. No hyphen.

For a significant portion of our history, immigration to the United States skimmed the best of almost every other country. Best in the sense that they WANTED the American identity AND were willing to assimilate and work damn hard for it. It has become easy for people to come here and keep one foot in their past. There is no desire to assimilate, only plunder/take advantage of the United States. And we have given them the ability to influence our country in ways that damage and are destroying our culture and identity.

I can see a uniquely American identity that is more than the Alt-Right.

Finally, there are variations within the Alt-Right that are both acknowledged and distanced by different individuals. I put them here to distinguish them from the broader Alt-Right that the media is trying to paint.

The Alt-White focuses on the future for the White Race to the general exclusion of others. A SMALL subset are those White Supremacists we see in the media. They have taken the opportunity that the media (and some politicians) has given them - unintentionally - to gain a platform/megaphone. We'd all be better off it they were ignored.

The Alt-West tends to downplay the race but focus on the European aspect.

Alt-Lite is newer and I've seen several different explanations including ignoring the religious aspect but also that ignore race as a factor.

Right now Alt-(whatever) is trying to piggyback on the attention Alt-Right is getting. We are talking about groups that MAYBE number in the hundreds but are more likely much much smaller.

There it is. Alt-Right is generally, white, male, Christian, of European descent, traditionalist, chauvinist, and decidedly independent. If you are inherently weak in your own identity, Alt-Right is scary. It isn't. Your fears is not it's features. It doesn't care about you. At all. Join it because it represents you, or not. I have not been made to feel unwelcome. Some disagree with my choices, but I've found more angst and anger from Conservatives and Liberals than I have from Alt-Right.

Be aware however, as a movement, the thought leaders are intelligent, well read, and strong personalities. If that scares you, the Alt-Right is not for you.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Health care

The fundamental problem with health care in the United States is NOT rising prices - those are the symptom.

It started 51 years ago. Medicare.

95% of all the medical costs you incur in your lifetime will happen in the last year of your life. An insurance study done decades ago and only since refined, but not altered in the conclusion. As we have increased the life span the percentage has gone done for the last year but increased for the last five years of your life - we live longer but at a cost. Still, quality and quantity have been improving.

If I told you that your car insurance was $1 a day for January though November, but $10 a day for'd demand one of three things:
1. A quote from another company
2. That we spread the December amount over the whole year, or
3. You wouldn't bother with insurance in December (or conversely, for January through November)

When there is no other company - you MUST get your insurance through me - the only other options are what we have with Obamacare.

#3 is what people decide when they think they are very good drivers and they have a very good record of not getting into accidents.

#2 is what everyone gets when we take the most expensive costs and spread them out over the whole. could go your entire life without getting into a car accident, but you will not get out of this life alive. And those final costs are, especially over an entire population, significant. So, we spread it out. Hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of medical care times millions of people every year.

Medicare shifted the cost of health care for the elderly onto everyone else. When the number of seniors was small and the number of workers large, the difference was pretty small. Now, the reverse is true.

In a nutshell:
A procedure cost $10,000. For a senior under Medicare, because of agreements with hospitals and doctors, the government only pays $6,400 and lets the senior pick up $2,000. What is the hospital supposed to do with the missing $1,600? Simple, it increases the cost to everyone else (not on Medicare) to $10,500. But insurance companies want some of the same deals that Medicare gets so, they pay $6,800 and leave their customers to pay $2,100. What happens to the other $1,600? Simple, the hospital charges the guy that pays for it out of pocket $11,500.

The cost is shifted from the senior to the insured to the uninsured (or self insured). Spread that out over thousands of procedures on millions of people and the numbers become staggering. Add in inflation and more expensive care as more people survive longer and the cost shifting becomes a game of who can shift the cost to someone else fastest. Government, seeing rapidly rising costs demands more shifting away from the growing number of people on medicare (and the state provided, medicare subsidized medi-programs), while insurance companies faced with their own escalating costs of complying with ever increasing documentation and regulation and inflation and rising medical costs, shift the cost to their clients in higher deductibles and more co-payments and demands for their own cost shifting. Dumping more people that can't afford it into the uninsured universe of the highest costs.

x 50 years.....

Obamacare takes the sickest of the uninsured and tells the insurance companies - insure them.

That is telling the car insurance company to insure someone sitting in an intersection with a crumpled front end and dripping fluids...

Insurance is about managing risk - there is a 100% risk to insure someone that just had an accident FOR that accident. Obamacare was not only destined to fail, it was designed to. So that the 'only solution' was government cutting insurers out of the system and just putting everyone on medicare.

Sounds good to people.....except to those people already on medicare who have watched their costs skyrocket over the last 5 years of Obamacare's initial efforts while care and service has dropped because there is a flood of new patients but no change in the numbers of nurses, doctors or hospital beds - and basic economics will tell you that increasing demand over a fixed supply means rising prices.

It is a vicious cycle that started....51 years ago. And all the people that sold Medicare, voted for Medicare, who benefited first from Medicare are long dead. We are left to live with the destruction they sowed. There are alternatives....I've considered two different options in the last dozen years....but something will change in the next two years, no matter who is elected....

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Two sides...

One side sees government as the tool to effect social change. To education, to heal, to eliminate poverty - to improve the human condition.

One side sees government as a tool to protect our rights to live and act freely - be that from others, from corporations or from foreign influence/action.

An argument can be made (and it is) that government can do both, but it is a failure to understand the means by which government can to the former - it must have the authority to take from some people to give it to others: It must pay teachers and fund schools, it must pay doctors and nurses and fund hospitals, it must pay for food and housing and it must prevent actions by individuals that hurt or harm others. That authority, once given, is seldom restricted or recalled. A phone tax intended to support efforts in World War One was finally repealed in the 1980s. If you demand government teach, you either specify exactly what it teaches or accept that it will teach what benefits the teachers. You lose control of the tool of change.

Easiest example: government controlled by one party tells teachers to tell students that gay marriage is ok. Then government is controlled by another party that tells teachers to tell students that gay marriage is bad.

We get students of different ages told different things - each objectionable by one side or the other. Both arguing about what was taught but neither arguing that the teachers shouldn't be teaching EITHER side.

You can not give government the power to impose "good" on people without fundamentally destroying both liberty and good government.

So, while one side sees effecting social change as a morally good thing, the other side sees it as morally corrupt liberty destroying.

One side is evil. The road to perdition is paved with good intentions.

Friday, October 21, 2016


It is not common knowledge, but most economists will tell you that paper currency ABSOLUTELY relies upon people accepting that it has value. When you work, offer your labor, in return for a piece of paper that represents more pieces of paper so that you can exchange them for food, fuel, shelter, you support a currency based solely on that trust.

What happens when that trust disappears? If you bought a car or a house, how much actual cash did you use? Or was it all 'paper' electronically exchanges solely based on your signature?

What happens when the value of the car or house, based on your paper purchase price, is suddenly questioned? When the bank realizes that the $200,000 it gave the seller of the house you bought in return for a mortgage against that house, represents much more than the house is actually worth?

Our trust in our currency and in our financial system is the ONLY thing that allows it to continue. Remove that trust (as happened in 2008 among banks and the financial community), and things quickly begin to unravel.

But it is the same with our electoral process. We have to trust that the system is fair (and Democrats screamed for years that the Bush presidency was illegitimate), or it too begins to unravel.

If you are unaware of the videos and wikileaks that show conspiracy to subvert the electoral process, you get your news from sources part of that conspiracy. I hate to offer a 'conspiracy theory - though it is clear it is more than theory - but it goes back to trust, large parts of the electorate are beginning to question the process and once that happens in a majority way, like the financial system, our governance system will start to unravel.

Trust. Fundamental to all relationships, personal, financial, governmental. Lose it and it all comes apart. And the tears are bigger than you think...

Offended I tell ya, OFFENDED!

A hallmark of free speech is the ability to offend. As a matter of fact, it was specifically called upon to protect political speech that stopped short of slander and defamation, but left every person that heard it offended.

Now, I don't like to use the term 'offended' because like 'racist' it is overused to the point of meaninglessness. Yet, if speech DOESN'T offend you at some point you are living in a bubble you truly need to get out of more often.

Getting out of your comfort zone is a sign you are stretching - if you only get out of the comfort zone by someone's speech, then YOU have failed in a basic human endeavor: growth.

All of this doesn't mean that you should burn your ears with loud, obnoxious, vulgar, hateful (not speaking of some pathetic "hate speech" code), diarrhea of the mouth. My brother could string together grammatically correct swear words, which were more humorous than what he was aiming for... No, calling someone corrupt, or a liar in order to protect the sensitive ears is treating people like four year olds. While they might WANT to be treated like four year olds, we really have to raise the next generation of twenty somethings to take on the real world.

So, next time someone 'offends you' with something they say, take a second to really listen and see if the problem is not what you are hearing, but what you are thinking.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

A quiet time...

Waiting for the movie to start I relaxed and thought of the time I spend just sitting. It is a lost art I think.

Whether you call it prayer, meditation, contemplation or navel gazing, time spent sitting and trying to NOT think about what you need to do next, or when you stand up again is getting to be almost impossible in our 24/7 connected lives.

Two plus years ago, sitting in the RCU (Recuperative Care Unit of the homeless shelter), I spent 16 hours a day sitting in a chair, sitting in a hallway four and a half feet wide staring at the wall. Then the floor. Back to the wall. Floor. Wall....and so on. I listened to the people walking back and forth in the hallway. I could hear the TV in the room at the end of the hallway with Judge Judy and Jerry Springer. But after a couple of days...well, not much to think about when there is NOTHING to do next when I stood up, not that standing up was something I was happy to be doing.

So. I just listened. Mostly I tried to ignore the barely audible brain destroying TV (I swear I could feel brain cells dying whenever I walked into that room). In the evening when people started coming back in for overnight...there were conversations but mostly, 16 hours of sitting.

A funny thing happened. I can't tell you WHAT it is, but I can tell you that I heard things. Not voices, not rumblings. I began to be aware that I knew things I had no particular way to know

I would start to say something and as I was getting ready to speak, I knew that it wasn't right...and the words died before passing out.

I would say something and knew it was right the second I said it. I said things to people that others had told them miles and hours earlier. I said what they needed to hear. I was just spouting my usual pretentious know, the stuff I say HERE!

This is of course not turning out as sage as it sounded while I waited for the movie to start....guess that's what happens 7 hours later.

What I want you to do is to find a comfortable place (no, the RCU hallway was NOT comfortable!), relax. Turn off the phone, TV, radio, IPod, turn it ALL off. And listen. Take a shot at 10 minutes, work your way up to an hour over the next month. Try every day.

The Universe is trying to tell you a lot, but ya got to LISTEN.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Women's view?

Woman's advocate on the Left describes Ivanka Trump as a 'character'.

Melania Trump is being criticized for not being out stumping for her if that is the best use of her time - she does have a career of her own....

Trump is being criticized for 'picking on a woman' by calling her overweight - weight shaming her - when the premier issue of her position was know, that thing women are always complaining about beauty when her image 'slipped' and he was the owner of the pagent, complaining about her image was the JOB DESCRIPTION.
People are dismissing Trump's apparent coming attack on Bill's sexual predator attacks as 'old news' their bringing up Trumps words from 20 years ago as a private citizen is truly hypocritical and politically motivated. Hillary talked about believing women that accuse someone of sexual abuse, except when they accused Bill (and he later admitted to several of them). Hillary talks about Trump TALKING about women, while ignoring Bill's actual physical attacks. Hillary talks about respecting women while Bill abused a 21 yr old in the OVAL OFFICE. Right, abused. See, just 10 years previously, a famous senator lost his job because he had an affair with a woman 25 years his junior in his office BECAUSE women of the Left said he was using his POWER to overwhelm the young woman's judgment. What was Monica but a 21 yr old intern...

Sorry. Either the issue is important or it is not. Either judgment is important or it is not. Either the actions of elected officials in office is important or it is not.

Hillary Clinton had classified material on her private computer - that is a felony. Intent is not a factor. Scooter Libby was convicted under the same remember him, the Left was apoplectic about it.

I'm used to double standards...but the Left isn't even bothering with a standard at this point, one standard for everyone else, anything goes for Clinton.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

September 11, 2001, In memoriam: Barbara (Bobbi) Arestegui

Posted annually on 9/11 since 2006 (I've missed a few, my apologies to Bobbi)

September 11, 2001, 7:59am, United Flight 11 leaves Boston's Logan airport.

In just a few short minutes, Barbara (Bobbi) Arestegui, 38, of Marstons Mills, Massachusetts would be one of the first casualties of that day. Assigned to the First Class cabin, Bobbi and fellow attendant Karen Martin were attacked shortly after takeoff.

In less than 40 minutes, the rest of the crew and passengers of Flight 11 died in the North Tower of the World Trade Center.

There are no public posts from friends or family on Bobbi. Two stories were published about her and her boyfriend Wayne. From them, the information below is shared.

"The first thing I noticed, of course, was that she is absolutely beautiful," he said. "We had a nice talk, probably for about 15 minutes. I asked her if it would be possible to get her phone number."

She told him sternly: "No, I don't give out my home number."

Wayne shrugged his shoulders and walked away, thinking: I gave it my best shot. She stopped him with one word.

"But," she said.
He turned.
"I'll give it to you."

She was living in Washington, D.C., the middle of five girls from a California family with Spanish Basque roots. Two of the girls would join the tight-knit community of flight attendants.

Her typical schedule was three or four days on followed by three or four days home.

She turned their house into a cozy retreat with a garden out back. They made a habit of walking the cranberry bogs, picking blueberries and having breakfast at the Mills Restaurant. She loved to cook - she dreamed of attending culinary school.

Bobbi picked up three stray and abused cats: Olive, Bruiser and Pumpkin. She'd loved animals since she was a kid in Hawthorne, a suburb of Los Angeles.

"She was a gentle person, yet tough when she needed to be," said Rosie Arestegui, who gave her daughter Barbara the nickname Bobbi. "She knew her job so well. She could do two or three people's work, plus hers, and it would be done perfectly."

Colleagues of Bobbi repeated that praise when Wayne met them in Boston on Friday. He talked with more than 50 people who knew his girlfriend through work. They remembered her as energetic; a huge heart in a 5-foot-3-inch frame.

Bobbi was not scheduled to work Flight 11 that day. But she had accepted extra flights; she was saving up her earned vacation to take a trip with Wayne at the end of September.

She got up about 2:30 that morning and within a few hours was out the door.

"Usually she wakes me up when she leaves. She didn't wake me up this time," he said.

But she did keep another of their rituals: At 6:45 a.m., he got a phone call from the airport.

"She told me that she was just about to board. She was waiting for them to finish cleaning the plane," he said. "She was in a wonderful mood, better than normal."

To view other sites honoring those that died on 9/11


Someone who inspired you...

Two years ago I was asked to write about someone that inspired me. I did, and fortunately, shared it with her a couple of months later...

Sometimes we find that in looking for inspiration that we have overlooked what was right before us all along. At the first mention of this project, I immediately thought of Sarah Palin. This woman, a wife and mother, had been raised in a tight-knit family, played sports and went to a small Christian college, obtaining her degree. She married and started a family with a husband that worked in his family's business and had separate jobs as the seasons changed. Palin became involved in her children's school PTA. Eventually running for Mayor of her town, and a small town it was. Everyone knew each other and when children departed from the way they were raised, a neighbor would intervene and return them to their parents - not so much that it took a village to raise a child, but that a village was there to support the parents in their job. She eventually was picked to chair a commission that accomplished in 3 years under her leadership what it had failed to do the previous 10 years - get multi-national oil companies to the table and completed an agreement that resulted in Alaskan citizens receiving substantial benefits from the depletion of the state's natural resources.

In doing so she went against her political party and rooted out corruption. Her run for Governor thereafter resulted in a huge margin of winning. Throughout it all, she was a wife and mother first. Her commitment to principled stands made her well worth the admiration she garnered. But I wondered if I had someone better to hold up? I sighed inwardly...of course I did.

This woman was born into a wealthy family. Her father had a national reputation in his field, but World War Two and an addiction to alcohol cost him his reputation, his business and eventually his respect. But his wife remained and the four daughters they raised made a transition to working class. This woman would work as an usherette in a theatre and her boyfriend ran the projector. After a couple years, instead of a proposal, the boyfriend dumped her.

Three years later he showed up on the doorstep of her mother and asked her to marry him and leave the country she called home. She said yes. Imagine the inner strength of that. Marriage, leaving your country all for a guy that dumped you. Yet she did, and the children came. Six children in 10 years. Two miscarriages marred the happiness, but together, this woman and her husband did something no one in their families had ever done - they bought a home. Fixed it up, sold it and bought another one. In 1964 they were the original real estate flippers. Her husband worked nights, went to school during the day and moved from sweeping buses to maintaining high voltage substations for the Chicago Transit system.

To this day, some 56 years later, my mother and I share a connection that miles and daily living can not break. I have lived in 8 states, and while that is not the same as leaving your homeland, my willingness to jump into the deep end and move forward is in my genes. My mother's commitment to raising children that were cared for and loved has found few positive comparisons. She maintains a log book with every birthday and Christmas present bought and it's cost. None of her children can say one was favored over another, one loved more. That sense of fairness has never wavered. I am reminded every time I see that book that it was never about the dollar and cents of my parents giving, it was knowing that in the future their children might mistakenly accuse them and they would have proof of their caring for each equally. That book now has spouses, grand children and great grand children and the commitment is still there. Steadfastness in the face of everything.

We were not raised to be religious, we were raised to be reverent. To be respectful and to be respectable. My sibs and I have led others in every task we have been charged with. Loyalty given has been loyalty earned. When my brother passed, the City of Chicago Council recognized him and his contribution to the community. That certificate sits next to my brother's ashes in the kitchen/dining area in my parents house - so that he will always know we remember him and keep him close. Love not til death do us part, but forever.

My parents received a normal education, my father apprenticed and earned his master's license before he left for the United States. He did it again here in a new field will working and raising a family. When I received my Bachelors, they simply nodded and said, good job. We didn't get extra praise for doing what was expected. Ask my mother today if she did anything special and she will deny it. She raised six children that have benefited and contributed to society. Today that merits special attention because of its rarity. She expected we would all work and live to our potential. I can't say that we have all done as well as we could, but that didn't change my mother's attitude towards us.

My mother, a wife, a plumber, a cook, a chauffeur, a seamstress, an electrician, a painter, a den mother, a friend, has no awards or certificates to celebrate her accomplishments - she will point to me and my sibs as her reward.

When my partner of 18+ years passed, my mother said my strength and my adherence to my principles moved her to tears. My partner's daughter was embraced as my parent's 15th grandchild. My mother and father never wavered in their acceptance and support of our life. When my illness forced me into a dependent state, they were there to support and encourage. My mother talked to me every day. I am 56 and I still listen to and am comforted by her wisdom and advice.

A wife, a mother, a woman that I am still trying to emulate because I have found no other woman in my life more worthy than her of my ambitions.

The one word, mom. No job, career or ambition is of higher regard.

Thursday, September 08, 2016

You will be assimilated....

From Jerry Pournelle "migration without assimilation is invasion"

We have made the idea of assimilation a bad thing in popular culture - it is too....BORG like. Except, the 'melting pot' is an important part of becoming American. If you leave your country, go to another country (ANY other country) you will be expected to learn the language, follow the laws and participate in their culture. That is how my parents were expected to act when they came to THIS country, and how they planned to act. Now, we not only don't expect them to follow our laws, we are going to bend our culture/society to their expectations!

The 'anti-appropriation movement' is a direct attack on the 'melting pot' assimilation process.

The first step in assimilation, in becoming American, is to lose the hyphen.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

Disrespect or Patriotism?

The Colin Kaepernick stunt continues to produce minor ripples in the convosphere.

When I went to church with V and CJ, I stood when everyone else stood, I sat quietly, I didn't read a book or listen to music on headphones. I didn't share their beliefs, but I was respectful. THAT is the difference. You don't have to share the beliefs, but respect someone's house when you are in it - or don't GO THERE.

No one says America is perfect, but when a black can earn 19 million dollars, or be President, or Attorney General or Governor or CEO or any other damn thing we have in this country....well, it doesn't give them a pass to be disrespectful of the society that gave them that opportunity.

The breakdown of American Society is the coarsening of the way people think of it. When segments believe there is nothing redeemable about our society, that it is racist, or misogynist, or ablist or whatever claim people to make about our society to argue for their withholding their support - except for their daily participation and benefit of it - then outside influences have the opportunity to widen the cracks and further damage what they can not damage themselves.

It is said that strong cultures are not destroyed from without, but from within. And that is what is happening. We are fracturing ourselves by isolating smaller and smaller groups, segregation writ large and self imposed, and then withholding our support from the larger society when it faces external and existential threats. More and more people are embracing those ideas and ideals that are destructive, socialism being one of the largest. But also the demand that others not assimilate into our culture but retain their ancestral own within our borders. The argument that our culture is no better than any other is demonstrably false.

It is not disrespect of another culture to ask the people that come here to assimilate and participate in our culture - after all, if theirs had been superior, why would they have left it? The benefits of our culture are a function of its foundations which was created by the assimilation and participation of everyone that has been born or chose to move here.

I could attend that church, participate in it's community, share the foundations but only by being respectful of it. Holding yourself apart, being disrespectful of the culture that you live in and benefit from is not making things better, it is making it much worse than you think it is. The alternatives are out there to see, and it should scare the hell out of you.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Cognative dissonance

Let us compare:

Stop the Keystone pipeline - an infrastructure project that will create tens of thousands of jobs (hold that bold thought in your mind)

Create a trillion dollar program to build bridges, dams and other infrastructure projects to put millions of people to work (add that in there too)

Provide a free college education to everyone that wants one

Allow millions of uneducated, unskilled illegal immigrants to come to, stay in United States.

These are the ideas of Obama, Hillary and the Left. Let's consider them.

If we create those millions of jobs that require 8 hours of physical labor every day, five days a week, 280 days a year, who is going to work them? The 50 year olds that have been laid off from manufacturing jobs lost to overseas? Hundreds of thousands of college graduates?

Or the uneducated, unskilled illegal immigrants?

Do you think unions will welcome those illegal immigrants into their ranks? I do. And all those 50 yr old ex-labor union workers will be on the street...picking up their $150 a month union pension. (My father paid into his union pension fund for 37 years, got less than $100/mo upon retirement)

So. Remember that first project? It is not the actual project that benefits us, it is what flows in that pipeline that does - millions of barrels of oil. Necessary to run all that equipment building all those projects.

Oh, we have millions of uneducated, unskilled, unemployed workers now - the black community. Wonder who will be hurt most by people willing to do physically demanding work for $12/hr, 8 hours a day, five days a week?

It is not that the Left doesn't think, it is that they don't understand consequences.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Alt-right or Alternative Right

Lots has been written about the Alt-Right in the last couple of days with Hillary's speech on Thursday. Ignoring the slanderist rhetoric, it would make sense to at least understand her concerns - and she is right to be concerned. Not for us, or the United States, but for herself and her agenda.

Most of the issues raised were more projection than explanation.

Clinton attempted a "reset" with Russia while Secretary of State. Her State Department helped to establish a 'technology center' in Russia that virtually everyone acknowledges is a way for Russia to 'steal', co-opt American technology. She helped Russia gain access and control over America's uranium supplies. She and Obama called Romney's characterization of Russia as our geo-political enemy laughable and dangerous. Russia was our partner against Iran, then ISIS.

Now Russia is the bogey man. Projecting Putin into Trump's head and campaign. Trump said that Putin's focus on Russia First was something we could emulate. Putting America First, not some pan-globalist ideal. Putin's aggressive stance against anti-Russia elements within his boards was another. Again, not something to oppose.

But the underlying reason to hate both Trump and Putin is their focus on 'nationalism'. Somehow, being for your own nation is bad. No, of course not, they (Clinton and the sycophants) want you to believe that they are acting in our best interest but that populism, support for a grassroots political(democratic) movement combined with nationalism is the root of an American NAZI awakening. Bullshit. And they know that, so, they have to tie in the one other piece to make their picture complete:

White Supremacy.

Do you think Japan should be for Japanese?
Do you think China should be for Chinese?
Do you think Israel should be for Israelis?

Most of the Alt-right categorically denies any allegiance to white supremacy. Only white sovereignty. And while I don't disagree in principle with that - after all, don't you support Black Lives Matter? Don't white lives matter also?

But, the issue (that I have) with alt-right is the general principle that alt-right stands for a christian, european, rule of law culture that is dominantly white. And that this country, the United States is the embodiment of the pinnacle of such culture that has lead the world in democracy, capitalism and innovation for two centuries.

There is some support for their positions that have historical support:

John Jay, author of the Federalist Paper #2-5 and 62, wrote:

It has often given me pleasure to observe that independent America was not composed of detached and distant territories, but that one connected, fertile, widespreading country was the portion of our western sons of liberty. Providence has in a particular manner blessed it with a variety of soils and productions, and watered it with innumerable streams, for the delight and accommodation of its inhabitants. A succession of navigable waters forms a kind of chain round its borders, as if to bind it together; while the most noble rivers in the world, running at convenient distances, present them with highways for the easy communication of friendly aids, and the mutual transportation and exchange of their various commodities.

With equal pleasure I have as often taken notice that Providence has been pleased to give this one connected country to one united people--a people descended from the same ancestors, speaking the same language, professing the same religion, attached to the same principles of government, very similar in their manners and customs, and who, by their joint counsels, arms, and efforts, fighting side by side throughout a long and bloody war, have nobly established general liberty and independence.

My own agnosticism is tweeked by the idea that we need to be a Christian nation. If by that we mean that it is populated by a supermajority of Christians, then I am ok with that. If it means to be governed by Scripture, then obviously I have a problem. But in discussions, the majority seem inclined to the former rather than the later.

So, while there are those that cheer the Alt-Right that are assuredly poisonous, that is not in itself bad. After all, the Communist Party of the United States backs Hillary Clinton wholeheartedly!! No one is claiming Clinton is the party of Communists....socialists maybe...!!

Many of the policy arguments tend to be highly supportive of Trump: limited trade agreements, very limited immigration, and certainly not of those that can't stomach our secular, humane society where everyone is 'equal'. That means that those that don't subscribe to women's rights and gay's rights can hardly be quietly dumped into small communities with no tangible ties to the refugees. It means that we stay out of the affairs of other countries.

The other place I have a problem with alt-right...and also with a portion of the economic landscape I am generally supportive their opposition to free-trade. Although I am thinking there is a difference of opinion as to what that means. To the alt-right it means the free movement of immigrants. And I don't think it necessarily means that. But I am also having issues with my support of unfettered free trade. More on that elsewhere.

The significant point that Clinton generally hinted at, but those opposed to Alt-right have hit upon is this:

We must secure the existence of white people and a future for white children

You are going to read that and think white supremacy. And Clinton wants you to. But let me change it and see what your opinion becomes:

We must secure the existence of black people and a future for black children
We must secure the existence of Jewish people and a future for Jewish children

Any change in character?

To the first one: Black adoptees speak out

To the second one: Evangelical support of Israel

Iraq and Egypt and Syria have seen the slaughter of Christians. Many countries in the Middle East will not allow Christian churches.
Why are many Middle Eastern refugees not Christian, but Moslem? Are there no Moslem countries in the Middle East not at war and with significant financial Kuwait or Saudi Arabia?

I don't oppose legal immigration - my parents are legal immigrants as is my daughter. I want those that see the United States as a place for children to grow up with unlimited opportunities - I fully support the culture, the european, christian, rule of law culture. For that reason, I support the alt-right in principle. I do have some issues, but then, I wouldn't be me if I didn't want to reserve my own sovereignty....

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Current research project

What is the foundation of law? Moral foundation? Then either it is a Christian based moral foundation or a natural law foundation. Natural law has a long history, but by 1250 it was strongly codified/explained by Thomas Aquinas as 'of God'. My current reading list: "A Line Through the Heart" and Written On The Heart", J. Budziszewski "Natural Law", Jacques Maritain "After the Natural Law", John Lawrence Hill "50 Questions on the Natural Law", Charles Rice "On Law, Morality and Politics" and "Summa Theologica", Thomas Aquinas "The Natural Law", Heinrich A. Rommen "Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysic of Morals", Immanuel Kant "Laws", Plato "Natural Law in the Spiritual World", Henry Drummond A Treatise of Human Nature", David Hume I'd actually be interested in a discussion on the following: Did a system of rights and morality exist prior to the religious foundations of Judism and Christianity? Is such a foundation applicable today?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

We feel your pain......not really, but you are going to make us, right?

A woman gets raped. Horrific and devastating. She reports it to police, man is arrested, trial, convicted, goes to prison for a long time. End of story....wellll, not really. See, the woman has to grapple with the trauma. Now first, (I am going to use 'we' because I am less interested in grammar than narrative), we have to focus on the events and circumstances leading up to the rape. We dress, we act, with the intent to feel nice about our appearance. It is not an invitation to assault, but first we ask: did we ask for this somehow. We are told we never ask for it - and on the fullest level, we didn't. But the thought does occur. If we can get past this and for many, they do, we then get to, could I have done more to prevent it. This one is harder because no matter how much you anticipate events, nothing is exactly as imagined. No matter how much you plan, no plan survives contact with the enemy. I've tried to tell people that it is not 'more' but 'different'. Could I have done something 'different'? The answer is yes, but the outcome might not have been any different.

If we can get past the second guessing about everything WE did or didn't do, we come to the 'what was he thinking' phase. This is futile. My experience with people that do horrific things is they weren't THINKING at all. It was some emotional ride their were on and it just 'got out of control'. Which is a bullshit excuse. They are not dogs/animals. The issue was 'they wanted and they were going to take what they wanted, period'. You can't spend time on 'what was he thinking' because it really had nothing to do with you.

We can sympathize with people going through this, some can empathize with them. But my problem begins when I am told I need to suffer along with them. And this is how that happens.

However or whatever way someone deals with a trauma - rape, or abuse, or anything that just kicks them hard, they need to deal with it in ways that address their issues. Let's say - it is a terrible (simplistic) example - that a woman was wearing a red dress when raped and the man was wearing a NY (sorry NY) Mets baseball cap. However she is approaching the issue, every time she sees a baseball cap her heart rate increases and she starts sweating. If it happens to be a NY cap, she begins to panic. Also, she got rid of the a matter of fact all her dresses and anything that was red....because every time she looked at 'red' in her closet, the same thing happened. She needs help dealing with these things and there is lots of help available.

But she doesn't go that way, she gets together with people supportive of her and gets them to agree not to wear red or baseball caps around her. So, after that she asks her employer to stop people from wearing red or wearing baseball caps. When turned down, she complains they were not being sympathetic to her situation. Pretty soon, she has friends and supporters protesting everywhere to ban red clothing and baseball caps. They do it in NY, at baseball games. Any suggestion or comment in opposition is immediately condemned as not being supportive.

Pretty soon the term 'trigger' is used and we all must consider our actions so that we don't inconsiderately trigger a panic attack.

We now must suffer along with the woman. We have to watch ourselves and others so as to not 'trigger' her response. A response that is understandable but not reasonable. The red dress and baseball cap had nothing to do with the rape.

I am not going to adjust my life to assuage your trauma. I will not be made to suffer as you do because you are dealing with suffering. I gave up a long time ago trying to second guess or rationalize things that are not rational. Shit happens, quit trying to smear me with it.

Friday, November 06, 2015

Ah yea, about that....

"Remember, the Benghazi protests were prompted by this film depicting the prophet Mohammed in not very flattering terms. The equation from the protesters at the US consulate in Benghazi: this film was produced by an American; we will hold America responsible for it.

The result: national foreign relations are seriously compromised by the irresponsible act of an individual. For structural and functional reasons, that doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s the rationale behind the Neutrality and Logan Acts. A similar rationale undergirds the ouster of states from foreign relations — along the lines of Hamilton’s dictum in Federalist No. 80 that “the peace of the Whole should not be left to the disposal of the Part.”
This is the thinking of mindless idiots. This is what passes for brain rot so deep that fungus couldn't grow on it. This is the level of stupidity that passes for educated discourse in a society that has determined that the CONCEPT of educated discourse is equal to monkeys throwing shit at each other.

"Remember, the shit throwing protests were prompted by the display of a woman in a bathing suit, not just ONE woman, but a whole STAGE of them. The equation from the shit throwing protesters is: this 'show of filthy, disgusting vile behavior was produced by an American; we will hold America responsible for it.


National foreign relations are seriously compromised by women appearing HALF NAKED IN PUBLIC. For structural and functional reasons, that doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s the rationale behind the Neutrality and Logan Acts. A similar rationale undergirds the ouster of states from foreign relations — along the lines of Hamilton’s dictum in Federalist No. 80 that “the peace of the Whole should not be left to the disposal of the Part.”

SEE? Our national standing and the ability to interact with other ADULTS is compromised by the SHIT THROWING MONKEYS that object to things they find offensive and therefore WE must function as if the SHIT THROWING MONKEYS are our equals or, because of our disgusting and vile behavior, OUR BETTERS.

F*K YOU. OUR culture is not better than theirs. To even MAKE the comparison is to suggest a steaming pile of shit should be or COULD be compared to prime steak. Their 'culture' barely qualifies as HUMAN. Oh, but it is HUMAN. Make no mistake, I'd NEVER equate the rational behavior of a society of monkeys with those marauding cesspits inhabiting the 'Islamic World'. To do so would be to insult MONKEYS.

Doctors know that the first step of curing an infection is to remove the SOURCE of the infection. That all attempts to cure or heal are wasted as long as the source of the infection remains. Further, if the infection threatens the host, doctors will CUT OFF the part of the body with the infection to save the whole.

Islam is an infection in the body of society and we either allow it to fester and eventually kill society or WE CUT IT OUT. Don't talk to me about liberty. The freedom to express is NOT the freedom to kill. If YOU want to treat rampaging murderers as MORALLY EQUIVALENT TO YOU, then it says more about the pathetic, mindless state YOU are in.

Barack Obama has proven that he agrees with the shit throwers and that THEY are OUR BETTERS. Further, he has clearly articulated that OUR future is not his concern, nor the focus of his EXECUTIVE AUTHORITY.

I was under the impression that there were enough ADULTS remaining in this country that we could tolerate our own shit throwing morons for a couple of years to allow the STENCH to reach a point where people would refuse to tolerate it anymore. But I was WRONG. Apparently a large MAJORITY of our population has decided that not only do they tolerate the shit throwing, they are willing to wallow in it.

DONE. I was wrong. To treat the spineless, mind rot of the left as something approaching HUMAN ADULTHOOD. If you are a woman and support 'cultural equivalency' of Islam with our culture you are not only STUPID, YOU ARE SUICIDALLY STUPID. If you are a male over the age of 18 that supports Obama, that thing hanging down there is as USELESS as the mindless rot between your ears and your position is DEFINITIVE PROOF of your INABILITY to reach maturity regardless of how long you live.

Finally. YOU are absolutely right that the REPUBLICANS AND THE DEMOCRATS are both the same. They ARE because they have learned that OUR population of suicidal, mind rotting, infants WANT TO BE TREATED just they way they are. They ARE because YOU are.

The STENCH makes me want to gag. I WILL NOT tolerate it anymore.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Getting kicked out of your life...Part One

The last post was written seven months ago. A lot has happened since then. Among other things, it is interesting how little the world has changed in the intervening time. Many people, including me, were predicting economic implosion and yet here we are seven months later still chugging along. Yet, while the society at large has remained essentially unchanged, my little segment has changed dramatically.

On December 18th I left Poway with CJ and the dog to travel to Chicago, via our truck, for an extended Christmas vacation. I also wasn't feeling well that day. Twenty six days later we arrived home having traveled over 5,600 miles. I was somewhat more sick. A week later, despite believing I would get better at home, I was worse. I went to the Emergency Room. They did very little for my coughing and difficulty breathing, but they did find a fractured vertebra in my back. Surgery, orthascopically, to reenforce the bone with bone cement, was done and I was discharged a day later. That was Jan 22.

On February 5th, I went to an appointment with my general practitioner doctor that was a follow-up to my hospital stay in January. We covered the hospital stay and my persistent cough and difficulty breathing. (I was supposed to leave the hospital with a medicine prescription for my lungs. The prescription was written incorrectly by the discharging doctor at the hospital and I have never been able to get it fixed despite 10 days of trying.) As almost an aside, I mentioned that I had developed a numbness in my left leg that left me with a tingling sensation that had enlarged to include both legs and my abdomen to a point just below my breasts. The doctor, Dr. Tasher of Escondido, checked a few things, seeking to determine the extent of the numbness. What he did next surprised me.

He turned and picked up the phone and called the Emergency Room at the hospital in Escondido. (My January hospitalization had been in Poway.) Next, he asked to be connected to the on-call neurologist. After a brief time on hold, he retold the doctor of my symptoms. He acknowledged something and then hung up. He asked if I had been driven to our appointment or if I had drove myself. He said he was unsure which was better, getting an ambulance or letting me drive to save time getting to the ER. In the end he told me to drive directly to the ER. He said he was concerned with potential damage to my spinal cord.

I drove to the hospital and walked into the ER. Despite a very large reception area, the room was full of people waiting to be seen. For most of the two weeks since the January hospital stay I had been using Victoria's old walker. My back and ribs were so sore from coughing that I found it painful to walk upright. The walker helped. When I approached the nurses at the 'reception desk', they asked if I was Ms Coyle. When I said yes, a wheelchair was brought immediately for me to sit in. In less than 10 minutes I was wheeled to an exam room. A doctor and nurse arrived shortly and covered my general condition and asked some questions about the numbness and tingling. They said another doctor was on his way. About thirty minutes later the other doctor arrived. Dr. Andrew Nyugen was the on-call neuro-surgeon. He redid much of the same exam Dt. Tasher did and explained that the numbness and tingling were signs of neurological damage to the spinal cord. He said I was being admitted as soon as they could get a bed ready. That took almost 10 hours but they brought a bed down to the ER room. I asked if I could stay in the wheelchair as it had been the most comfortable seat I had sat in recently. Dr Nyugen said no, that he wanted as much pressure on my spine as possible removed as soon as possible.

I had entered the ER at 1:15pm. At 11:30pm, Dr Nyugen came into my hospital room and said that he was concerned that one or more bones of my spine had collapsed onto my spinal cord. Before he went into surgery, he wanted an MRI to see what he would be facing. Due to my weight, I needed to be taken to an Open MRI away from the hospital. There were issues with payment (I had no insurance). It would take until February 8th to get the MRI done. Each night between 11pm and Midnight, Dr, Nyugen would stop in to discuss tests that had been done and what was going to happen next.

He said he believed that an infection had settled into my spinal column and that bones were collapsing. Other bones were likely to be severely compromised making any repair difficult. He said that the odds of walking after the surgery were no better than 50/50 based on his best guess of the situation. He said that recovery was going to be long and difficult. But he was optimistic about me. He said he couldn't believe that I had walked into the ER in the first place. I decided not to tell him or anyone else that I had not driven directly from Dr Tasher's office but instead had driven 30 miles round-trip to friends (the Longs) to ask them to take care of our dog while I was in the hospital. I'm sure Dr Nyugen would have been upset, I knew that the 8 or 9 speed bumps I had to drive over were each potentially life threatening at the worst, at best likely to cost me my legs. Hindsight was cheap at that point.

In the hospital, I was started on massive doses of antibiotics and pain meds. Every bedpan, every movement grew increasingly painful. By Feb 8th I was finally scheduled for the MRI. I was to be transported to the facility, put into the MRI and returned to the hospital. Every bump, every action added to my discomfort. I had spent almost 2.5 hours on the gurney in an office building lobby while the MRI facility demanded immediate payment and the hospital demurred. Finally, something changed and I was positioned for my 80 minutes in the machine. Note that 'open MRI' only means you can see daylight if you can see out of your ears. I fell asleep at least twice.

Four and a half hours after being loaded onto a gurney I was returned to my hospital bed and a large dose of pain med. When I woke up next it was March 2nd or 3rd.