Found Footage Offers a New Glimpse at 1906 San Francisco Earthquake

Image On Saturday night, a small crowd will fill a 120-seat theater in Fremont, Calif., to watch a movie unlike any other on the big screen, one that offers a fresh look at a tragic chapter in American history.

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Another Side of the Healthcare Issue

It seems to me that when it comes to healthcare issues, many people are focused on the quality of care, cost of care and prescription drugs, and access to healthcare for everyone. Sure these are critical issues, but I think there is another big area that is being ignored even though it should be one of the easier problems to fix. It could also save money and a lot of stress – especially for the elderly.

The issue I’m referring to is the whole coordination of benefits and payment process. For the last few years, I’ve been helping my parents deal with Medicare, Medicaid, HMOs and healthcare providers. While they have been able to get the care they need, virtually every time they see a provider, the billing gets screwed up. Despite filling out long, detailed forms with all of the required insurance information, the healthcare providers always seem to bill incorrectly. We’ve seen bills submitted to the wrong insurance company, submitted to Medicare when they should have gone to the HMO, sent to the wrong address, and sent to collections before a bill was ever sent.

This could be fixed without political turmoil, more taxes, healthcare industry whining lobbying, etc. All it needs is for people to complain loud and long. Plus a few smart tech companies to straighten out the cockeyed billing systems. Imagine if it were easy to record and transmit health insurance information. I’m not talking about personal medical records, just information about who your insurance company is, what type of coverage you have, deductibles, etc. So, when you go to the hospital, they can look up the appropriate information and make sure bills get directed properly.

I can only  imagine how much money is wasted on the problems with healthcare billing – not to mention the unending hassle and confusion for consumers. Could you imagine your 80-year-old grandmother trying to sort out a billing mess like this?

What can you do? Write to congress, write a letter to the editor, complain loudly to your healthcare providers, blog – whatever you can do to get people to notice.

Lying about the past to protect the right to waste

The SUV Owners of America has decided that lying is the best way to protect their right to waste energy and stall any attempt at saving the environment, reducing our dependence on foreign oil and potentially helping the auto industry. They have started an ad campaign that claims the energy crisis of 1973 was caused by energy taxes and overzealous environmental restrictions. They warn that higher fuel economy standards will lead to more lines at the pump.. Huh?

What a load of BS! It amazes me that these people think they can simply ignore history. The long lines at the pump were caused by the oil embargo imposed by certain middle eastern countries that wanted to punish supporters of Israel. The Republican administration of the day used the issue to push through the Alaska pipeline and other nods to big oil just like Bush is doing today.

It’s time we took back our country from the greedy oil companies!

A few things to keep in mind on Election Day

Abu Ghraib
Unwarranted Phone Taps
Unprecedented Powers
Unmatched Incompetence
Unparalleled Corruption
Governor Bob Taft
Representative Tom Delay
Representative Roy Blunt
Representative Ken Calvert
Representative John Dolittle
Representative Tom Feeney
Representative Katherine Harris
Representative Jerry Lewis
Representative Gary Miller
Representative Marilyn Musgrave
Representative Richard Pombo
Representative Rick Renzi
Representative John Sweeney
Representative Charles Taylor
Representative Curt Weldon
Representative J.D. Hayworth
Representative Don Sherwood
Representative Bob Ney
Representative Duke Cunningham
Representative Tom Reynolds
Representative Chris Cannon
Jeff Gannon
Representative Mark Foley
Representative Dennis Hastert
Senator George Allen
Senator Bill Frist
Senator Conrad Burns
Senator Rick Santorum
David Safavian
The Vice Presidential Energy Task Force
Three bucks a gallon
Record oil company profits
Anwar Pipeline
Anbar Province
Arthur Anderson
Global Crossing
Global Warming
Global Boiling
Adam Kidan
Timothy Flanigan
Ralph Reed
Harriet Miers
The Supreme Court
John Bolton
Florida, 2000
Ohio, 2004
North Korea
Stem Cell Research
Scooter Libby
Valerie Plame
Golden Parachutes
Shrunken Pensions
Bernie Kerik
Eminent Domain
Social Security
Habeas Corpus
Ahmad Chalabi
The Baghdad Museum
Tora Bora
Taliban Resurgence
Iraqi Insurgents
General Eric Shinsecki
General Anthony Zinni
Mission Accomplished
Illegal Immigration
Intelligent Design
Kenneth Tomlinson
Claude Allen
Swift Boat Hit Squads
Ari Fleischer
Scott McClellan
Tony Snow
Ann Coulter
Expiration of Assault Weapons Ban
John Ashcroft
Alberto Gonzales
George Tenet
Paul Bremer
Paul Wolfowitz
Richard Perle
Kissinger Redux
Duck Cheney
Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Turd Blossom
And finally, the Uniter-Decider-Reader of Camus, Shakespeare and “My Pet Goat,” who describes the party that successfully prosecuted two world wars as people who cut and run.

Support Our Troops

Ready for something completely unthinkable and outrageous? All this time, people have been saying that anyone opposed to the illegal war in Iraq is not supporting the troops. Well, now the Army is the one who is not showing support. Check out this Washington Post article about a soldier who was arrested in the U.S. for assaulting a police officer. Based on his medical condition (diagnosed by Army doctors), it may not have been an assault at all – it could have been an epileptic siezure. So he may be innocent.

Of course, I don’t have anywhere near enough information to pass judgement about this man’s guilt or innocence, but if the Army doctors can provide information to ensure a fair trial, they should. Instead, they’d rather abandon someone who would have willing laid down his life for his country. Even worse, was a quote from an attorney-adviser at Walter Reed, which read “Our sole concern in this matter is to protect the interests of the United States Army.”

So to hell with the dedicated men and women who make the Army even possible!

Now who’s supporting the troops?

If this outrages you as much as it does me, please make a lot of noise about this! Write to your senators and representatives, local newspapers, etc.

Things you have to believe to be a Republican today

Saddam was a good guy when Reagan armed him, a bad guy when Bush’s Daddy made war on him, a good guy when Cheney did business with him and a bad guy when Bush needed a “we can’t find Bin Laden” diversion.

Trade with Cuba is wrong because the country is communist, but trade with China and Vietnam is vital to a spirit of international harmony.

A woman can’t be trusted with decisions about her own body, but multi-national corporations can make decisions affecting all mankind without regulation.

Jesus loves you, and shares your hatred of homosexuals and Hillary Clinton.

The best way to improve military morale is to praise the troops in !

speeches while slashing veterans’ benefits and combat pay.

If condoms are kept out of schools, adolescents won’t have sex.

Providing health care to all Iraqis is sound policy. Providing Health care to all Americans is socialism.

HMOs and insurance companies have the best interests of the public at heart.

Global warming and tobacco’s link to cancer are junk science, but creationism should be taught in schools.

A president lying about an extramarital affair is an impeachable offense. A president lying to enlist support for a war in which thousands die is solid defense policy.

Government should limit itself to the powers named in the Constitution, which include banning gay marriages and censoring the Internet.

The public has a right to know about Hillary’s cattle trades, but Georg! e Bush’s cocaine conviction is none of our business.

Being a drug addict is a moral failing and a crime, unless you’re a conservative radio host. Then it’s an illness, and you need our Prayers for your recovery.

What Bill Clinton did in the 1960s is of vital national interest, but what Bush did in the ’80s is irrelevant.