Catching up on random things…

The US has relinquished control of the internet. Most powerful communication tool out there -potent delivery system for the weapon of ideas. Why should we want to control that? The internet is a pain, the MSM has to keep scrubbing it all the time!

Then again we apparently do want to control this?

About the Vinegar at Jesus’ Crucifixion: We’d talked about it a little here, but Julie at Happy Catholics has been resourceful about it and you’ll want to read what she’s dug up. It’s VERY interesting, and I’ll give you a hint -it’s one more piece of the Passover!

Since we’re being random, here, I’ve never seen a baby dance like this before (H/T Jeanette)

After watching that beautiful child dance, how can we not remember to offer up prayers for Belle, whom we’ve been holding in prayer all week. J gives us an update here. She and her family have a long road ahead.

People sometimes ask me why I post so infrequently on weekends – part of it has, unconsciously, been about trying to keep Sunday as Sabbath. We don’t always manage, but my husband and I do try to live Sunday a little differently than the rest of the week. More lingering over the newspapers, doing puzzles together. Lots more coffee. It’s good to have one day of the week that is very different from the rest.

Papists can be funny? That seems to be the consensus at a surprised Ace post, where Drew asks: Wait, these are produced by “Catholic Voter Action”? Two questions…Aren’t they just “Big Religion”…And two…when did the papists get so funny?

Britain must start charging for health care and raise the retiring age if it wants to escape a debt crisis.

Obama and the Olympics: Lots of people still writing about it. Insty has a great roundup and Moe Lane sums it up.

David Warren: Is Obama Gorbachev?

With an incredible rapidity, America’s status as the world’s pre-eminent superpower is now passing away. This is a function both of the nearly systematic abandonment of U.S. interests and allies overseas, with metastasizing debt and bureaucracy on the home front.

“What business is it of the government’s?” Whether this woman chooses radiation or mastectomy?

Is America getting hustled on Iran?

Is America
getting hustled on cap and trade?

Another Czar. No, czar! I think people have been confusing czar with scar.

This just depresses me:

“The administration told the French,” reports the Wall Street Journal, “that it didn’t want to ‘spoil the image of success’ for Mr. Obama’s debut at the U.N.”

I guess this was supposed to be his JFK/RFK moment. It’s sick. The campaign never ends. But image is not everything. At some point, there has to be substance.

I do not like this chart. And I like these economics charts even less.

Capitalism is evil: Well, not really. Neither is America

Dear Latin American Despots: Don’t start thinking we doesn’t love ya, cuz we does! We does!

Mark Steyn: Finishing off Polanski. That will leave a mark. And it will hurt his defenders, too.

Has modern conservatism become a cult? Joe Carter asks a good question. I’ve been saying for a while that we need to be very careful not to allow ideologies to become idols. A good read.

A better question:
Is A-Jad a Jew?

Webster is so complimentary to this blog, I almost hesitate to link to this, but -because he’s a great editor- he just too many things worth reading, so please don’t think I’m stuck up!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • John Thayer Jensen

    Julie says (I don’t seem able to comment on her site but maybe she will see this):

    Ok, the vinegar and gall was “sour wine” mixed with a narcotic that has been mentioned at The Anchoress’s. Every single resource I checked (and I checked seven) said this was common practice for crucifixion victims because the gall was a narcotic to dull pain … and that Christ rejected it because he was offering it ALL to the Father for us. Talk about humbling.

    This is not about the vinegar but about the ‘gall.’ I have always been puzzled by this idea that gall was supposed to dull pain. Does it? The only thing I know about gall – by which I take the word to refer to what is usually called ‘bile’ – is that when I was a kid and slaughtered beasts on the farm, I was told to be extremely careful in handling the liver not to pierce the gall bladder because it would make the liver very bitter.

    Does gall/bile actually have some narcotic effect? I have never been able tofind that it does.


  • Joseph Marshall

    Mr. Mackey says that combining “our high deductible plan (patients pay for the first $2,500 of medical expenses) with personal wellness accounts or health savings accounts works extremely well for us.” He estimates the plan’s premiums plus other costs at $2,100 per employee, and about $7,000 for a family. This is about half what other companies typically pay. “And,” he is quick to add, “we do cover pre-existing conditions after one year of service.”

    I’m ever so pleased with you Anchoress. For once we have something substansive about the health coverage issue to discuss.

    Now there is nothing in particular wrong with the plan. But there are some things we need to know and a misconception we need to correct.

    First, how much does the plan actually cover once the deductable is met. 90-10? 80-20? 70-30? Second, is there an out of pocket expense limit capping the total medical expenditure and shifting the plan to 100% coverage? Third, is the deductable $2500 for each individual member of the worker’s family? I strongly suspect it is, if the cost savings to the company are so low. Finally the year-long wait on pre-existing conditions is merely the industry standard and is nothing particularly wonderful.

    Why do we need to know these things? Whole World Foods is a grocery store, and I should imagine that the average per annum wage is somewhere around $25,000. Someone who doesn’t get very sick ends up getting no coverage whatever on a $2500 deductable. His premiums are an out and out loss added to whatever medical expenses he accrues.

    So the maximum this individual will have to pay for his medical care before coverage would be about 1/10 of his annual salary. All this, of course, assumes that there is some reasonable amount of paid sick leave for the insured and he will actually continue to have a salary while he is recovering from his $2,500 illness.

    At this point I’ll ask you a question which I’ll repeat: Is this better or worse coverage than you have?

    Let’s give our insured a wife and two children. This means that before any single individual gets covered at all, the family may have to spend as much as $10,000 out of pocket. That’s well over 1/3 of a salary of $25,000.

    Could your family have absorbed that percentage of out-of-pocket expense before coverage when your boys lived at home?

    Now, let’s be generous and give the insured an 80-20 plan, like I have on Medicare. I strongly suspect the real plan is 70-30 with so low a company premium but we’ll assume 80-20.

    Our family is going to need it because they are going to have a catastrophic medical expense: All four members are in a serious auto accident and sustain major injuries. Extreme, but perfectly possible.

    They have to pay that $10,000 off the top, and for each $10,000 thereafter they pay $2000. Multiple trauma surgery for all four would run about $25,000 each [at an absolute minimum]. So the total out-of-pocket would be $30,000, or well over the insured’s entire yearly salary.

    How’s that compare with what you have?

    This is why knowing if there is an out-of-pocket limit is so crucial. At what point, if at all, does the coverage pay 100%. I would say that if the out-of-pocket limit is any higher than $5000 per family member the coverage is not very good at all. This would limit the bill for our poor auto wrecked family to $20,000 or 4/5′s of the insured’s annual salary. And the sick leave package for the insured breadwinner would have to be very generous indeed to allow the paid leave needed to recuperate from such an accident.

    So is this the kind of answer we want for a health care bill for everybody? I’ll leave that for you to decide.

    Now, how much of the $2100 premium would the government pay per person to employers or to insurers for all companies carry this kind of coverage as a minimum? There are 154 million working, or about half the population. If the government pays $2100 per employed person that would be $323.4 billion that would have to be outlaid.

    And then what about the other half of the country that isn’t working? Well, some will be Medicare, some Medicaid, some both. And some will be dependents of the working insured.

    And of course 13 million of them will be illegals who we are going to force out of the country when Social Security goes to E-verify, so we won’t need to insure them.

    Now, if the Democrats brought a package like this out, would you support it?

  • John Bey

    Two points:
    DMV is state run, not federal.
    The average Britain lives +3 years longer then the average american. (They don’t have to worry about the bills associated with their medical treatments.)

    I’ll take DMV treatment anytime over private health care. At least I won’t get taken to the poorhouse. (DMV in NY is good.)

  • John Bey

    What we have now is “Corporatism” not “Capitalism”. The rewards shared by individual business, and the risks are socialized.