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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

My Monday Dream...

Next Monday is many things. Most importantly, my 25th anniversary. Hey, Lovely Wife, I don't know how you put up with me for this many years, but thank you!!!!!!!

We've already celebrated with a trip to the gulf coast. And we'll be visiting the kid in Ohio over the weekend, driving home Monday.

Monday Night, though, is something big. Packers vs. Vikings,with Brent Farve wearing Purple...Oh, I spelled his name wrong, sorry, he hasn't been around here in a while, I forgot.

Anyway, the obvious dream is Green Bay winning 35-0, with Farve Favre throwing 6 picks like he did against the Rams one time.

But, if Minnesota were to win, I'd rather see BF toss a few picks that go for TD's, then get hurt trying to throw a cheap crack back block like he did in preseason (karma), and have Tavaris Jackson lead the comeback for Minnesota. That would be funny as hell.

BTW, for the folks who keep pointing out his pass to Greg Lewis to win the game Sunday, keep in mind that if it weren't for the alligator arms of a San Franciso cornerback two plays before, when Favre hit him in the numbers with a sure pick, the game would have been over. Luck won that game, not Favre. But that happens a lot in the NFL.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

How about a Roll Back?

So anyway, Wal-Mart is always talking about their price roll backs. Well, I found an item on the shelf that needs one, by all means. I'm sure NO ONE bought a single box of this popcorn. I don't care how good it is.

There was actually a 42" flat screen TV under the popcorn, and I'm (pretty) sure that's what the price was for. Still, it was pretty funny.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

McConnell Blasts Government Over Gag Order

McConnell Blasts Government Over 'Gag Order' on Private Health Care Provider - Political News - FOXNews.com

What's that about? Humana evidently sent a flyer out to it's Medicare Advantage customers telling them that HR 3200 and the Senate Finance bill by Max Baucus threatened their benefits. Baucus, in a hissy fit, order Medicare's oversight folks to investigate Humana for doing it, claiming they were misleading and confusing seniors.

AARP, who's spending millions advertising to support such legislation; with just as confusing language; and who runs a Medicare Advantage program, hasn't been asked to stop what they are doing.

Mitch McConnnell has hoisted the BS flag, and asked why the government is trying to gag companies from providing information about legislation, other than to protect themselves from being discovered as liars.

The CBO has come out and basically sided with Humana, saying millions of seniors will either lose Advantage coverage completely, or see a decline in benefits due to the cuts Baucus is proposing in the program in his bill, and the House in there version.

If you look at actual facts about Advantage, you'd have to wonder why it's the targets of so many cuts. It provides service for about 20% cheaper than standard Medicare, and the folks who use it rate it much higher for customer service than Medicare.

It seems if Congress were serious about cutting Medicare costs they'd expand enrollment in Advantage, not try and cut it. Except Advantage uses private health insurers to provide it's service, and we all know they are evil, just ask Nancy Pelosi and the President.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Government to Mandate Auto Ownership!

The government has decided to mandate automobile ownership, one of my inside sources told me.

Why would they do such a thing? Well it seems that those who drive automobiles are getting stuck with an extra charge that drives the cost of a car up, they have to pay extra to subsidize public transportation.

Gas taxes, wheel taxes, registration fees and tolls are all funnelled into public transit funds, making those who drive pay for those to take the bus. Yes, bus and train riders do pay a fare, but it doesn't cover the actual cost of providing public transportation.

The way it is being put together, if you can't afford to buy a car, you'll get a government subsidy to help pay for it, through an approve government auto dealer (GM or Chrysler, since the government owns them). You won't be allowed to buy one from outside those approve dealers if you use the government money.

The feds will also determine what type of vehicle is available through the dealers. There will be no waivers, if the 4 passenger Cobalt won't work for your family, that's too bad.

If you do have a car, but it's blue book value exceeds a preset limit, you will be charged a tax on it, to help fund the subsidies to those who don't have cars.

If you can afford to buy one, but insist on using public transportation, at the end of the year the IRS will verify you don't have a car, and assess you a fine, from $800 to $3900 a year based on income, to punish you for not buying one.

Does this sound insane? Yes. And it's not happening. However, the part about drivers subsidizing public transit is true, just like insured people subsidize the uninsured (or those on Medicare).

So why would you consider this a reach, when the Senate and House are already considering legislation, using this same logic, in the name of health care reform?

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Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Bird Shit Couldn't Wreck Tonight

I have to say, when a bird takes a dump on my head, it usually wrecks my day. But not tonight.

The Lovely Wife and I are in New Orleans celebrating our silver wedding anniversary, and went out for the big dinner tonight.

I decided on Cafe Adelaide, a member of the Commanders Palace family of restaurants, and couldn't have been more pleased. The staff was incredible, and the food better. Every course made you want more of it, and anticipate the next.

First, I want them to start selling their shrimp 'corn dogs' in Chicago. A huge gulf shrimp in a well seasoned corn dog batter with a sauce that had just enough heat to tell you there was pepper in it, but not so much that you wanted a drink after a bite. A pile of them with a six pack would be great eats for a football game.

The soup portions were almost too generous. Blue Crab Bisque with saffron and popcorn (yes, popcorn) was my choice. If it weren't for the fact that in a fancy restaurant they frown on it, I would have stuck my face in the bowl and licked it clean. The Lovely One had turtle soup au sherry, and possibly an orgasm while eating it. She's loved turtle soup since her youth, and claims this is the best ever. It is a tried and true one, since it's the original from Commander's Palace.

For entree's I tried the Ahi Tuna with a cayenne and five spice blend, she had the crispy shrimp with grits. The idea of cayenne with ahi kind of scared me. Many places let the sauce, rub or crust overpower the tuna, and hot peppers would be an easy way to do it. Their preparation was just the opposite. The pepper and five spice were subtle and complimentary, not overpowering. The blue crab fried rice was a perfect side with it, acting as a palate cleanser between bites of tuna so you never missed the subtleties of the dish.

Her shrimp were ginormous; which I think is a technical size for shrimp; whole gulf shrimp and had a light batter with a perfect seasoning. She gave me one bite, and I had thoughts of stealing the plate. The grits were stone ground, firm and wonderful, definitely not the stuff you buy in a box. A great pairing with the shrimp, and a wonderful take on a southern classic. The only problem was that there was so much she couldn't finish it and have room for dessert, which I insisted we have.

For dessert I had a peach cobbler with candied ginger ice cream and white chocolate. Never thought of that grouping, but who ever did is a genious. The peach and ginger were awesome together!

The wife ordered a cheesecake that would rival anything you can find in New York or Chicago (sorry Eli). Creamy, smooth and light, with just enough chocolate to taste good and not overpower.

As for the staff, excellent is an understatement. I spend a lot of time in restaurants due to work, and can't think of many that rivaled this group. They wanted to know everyone's name, where you were from, what brought you to town, etc. If you sat for too long with a blank stare, (usually from trying to understand how the food could be so good), one of the staff was there to make sure everything was okay.

Within minutes of saying were were in town celebrating our anniversary the bar sent over two mini-cocktails (Adelaide Swizzle) that I could drink for a week (and not walk for two). When dessert came out, the cheesecake plate had "Happy Anniversary" written on it in chocolate sauce.

As for the bird shit, after dinner we decided to make a quick trip back to Bourbon Street. When I parked the truck I walked under a tree, and a resident decided my hair needed some work, and redecorated my head. It didn't matter, we'd had such a great night even bird shit couldn't wreck it.

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Thursday, September 03, 2009

What's the Plan?

So, the President is now going to make a speech to a joint session of congress to try and get health care reform; or is it insurance reform this week; back on track.

According to the New York Times the idea is to simplify things so that folks will better understand what he wants.

Reading into the Times article it's clear that he really doesn't want to scale back as much as some claim. And the things that will lead to a government take over are still there, and items that could really lead to lower costs are missing.

For example, he'd like to keep the public option, as a form of "competition", but still rejects the idea of selling policies across state lines, which would be a market way of reducing prices.

He'd still like to force insurers to charge the same rate to anyone in an age group, regardless of health, fully knowing that rates then go up for the majority of healthy individuals to cover the added expense of those who aren't.

While he likes the idea of a coverage mandate for individuals, he really hasn't talked about an enforcement mechanism. The problem with this has been seen in Massachusetts, where people get insurance so they have a policy number when they file taxes (when it's checked). Then they dump the policy a month later. They don't pick coverage up again until they are either sick, or have to file again.

He'd like a "no wait, no restriction" guarantee on insurance policies. What does that mean, well, if you call 1-800-insure-me at 8 am to get a policy, at 9:00 you can deliver a baby by Cesarean, and be fully covered. Then, you can drop your policy a few week later when the bills are paid.

What does all this really do? It makes it nearly impossible for an insurance company that isn't underwritten by the federal treasury to break even, much less be profitable. This is an important thing to the President and the folks on the left. They know that the companies will stop writing insurance (ask New Yorkers, and folks in Maine) and then they can claim that "evil insurance companies" don't care about you, and you'd be better off with the public option.

Don't be fooled by the smooth talk next Thursday. The truth is the only goal of this reform idea is to make it impossible for anyone but the government to compete in the insurance business.

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The Government Can!

Great YouTube video from Tim Hawkins

Thanks Charlie

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