Monday, October 31, 2011

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Then meets now...

The occupy movement is in full swing. Michael Moore recently joined Occupy Oakland, after the situation there turned violent. Catch this clip where he says we need to define "Capitalism" in 2011 terms, and how the corporate model involves less & less workers, doing more work with less benefits, no voice, top down management, with money flowing freely only in the top tier of the corporate world. 
The workers are making less, and trying to save for retirement with 401k accounts & Wall Street makes that money disappear like drunken gamblers, while making secure their huge bonus money, and having no qualms about foreclosing on homes they will simply demolish rather than take a lower profit. 
We have tons of empty homes, and even more homeless people. We have excellent medical facilities, Doctors & hospitals, but limited access- even those w coverage, can find themselves in medical bankruptcy. We have huge agribiz production, and people starving right here in America. 
Voting for candidate A or B does not seem to stop the flushing of more than a trillion bucks down the toilet of wars. While Obama waxed poetic about this being our "Sputnik moment", schools are closing & teachers are unemployed. He makes a great speech- but reality is not aligned. No other joker throwing their hat in the ring offers any promise of change for the better either. 

How's traffic?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Punkin' heads

No, this is not a post about the presidential election candidates, campaigns or debates.
Pure Halloween~

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Don't just bring them home

President Obama has announced that all U.S. troops, about 40,000, still deployed in Iraq will come home by the end of 2011. Although he initially said this was a priority while campaigning before the 2008 election, this move feels now more like a 2012 election move. 
There are approximately 14 million unemployed in the U.S. (9.1 %), the homeless rate is well 
over 643,067--- I'm just saying, to add an additional 40,000 to these ranks can be a potential disaster. Even if returning troops have family, shelter, and support, and or a job, they still need psychological & support services- the necessary help should not be an afterthought that comes after the returning soldiers have a crisis. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Rest in Peace

A song for my Mom.
Because I just had major surgery, I am not able to fly cross country to attend her funeral.

I go back & forth between being relieved that Mom is free & at peace, and feeling so deeply sad that
she is no longer with us.

May she rest in peace.

Monday, October 17, 2011

In Memoriam

My Mom passed away this afternoon, peacefully, at age 86.
She was an extraordinary human being who was proud to
"wear her heart on her sleeve". She helped so many friends and family
in their times of need, it was difficult to witness
Alzheimer's rob her of her ability to communicate- such a bright,
articulate & caring woman. 

I Love You Mom
You always have a place in my heart

Grains, Blades, Drops, Stars

I love you as much as all the.....
 grains of sand,
blades of grass,
drops of rain,
& stars in the sky

* We came up with this "how much I love you" idea over a number of years...
cards & letters often had "GDBS" inscribed as a footnote.

Signs of the times

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Joe the Plumber

I thought it was the post op haze of the pain meds, but, no, I read that right, Joe-the-Plumber
is running for congress.

CNN reports: Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher, better known as "Joe the Plumber," has taken steps toward launching a bid for a House seat in Ohio.

Wurzelbacher filed candidacy papers with the Federal Election Commission on Friday, indicating he would run as a Republican from the state's 9th district.
"Joe the Plumber" emerged on the national stage during the 2008 presidential campaign when he pressed then-Sen. Barack Obama over his plan for small business growth. The then-Republican presidential ticket of John McCain and Sarah Palin quickly capitalized on the exchange. Wurzelbacher, who it was later revealed was not a licensed plumber, appeared at campaign events with the GOP nominees.
The Democratic-leaning northern 9th district includes parts of Toledo. On the Democratic side, Reps. Dennis Kucinich and Marcy Kaptur will face each other in an incumbent-versus-incumbent primary, the result of Congressional redistricting.

This is a Koch bros. act-- redistricting as a strategy to bump out candidates & increase #'s of conservative voters in all districts.
 Having to choose to vote between Kucinich & Kaptur? 
Joe the Plumber has a snowball's chance in hell of winning in that race. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

truth in advertising...

201 E 11th Ave, Eugene, OR
(541) 225-3271 ‎ ·
2 reviews

"If you value your money, time and sanity, never ever open an account here. ...-

I came across this gem of a link while looking at the local "occupy (your town here)" protest site.
 Lots of people are particularly peeved with their latest move a $5 monthly fee for debit cards

Politico reports:

Several liberal Democratic lawmakers on Thursday demanded an investigation into whether the nation’s largest banks – including Bank of America, J.P. Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo – are coordinating efforts to raise fees for consumers, contending that would violate federal antitrust laws.

“Mr. Attorney General, check it out,” said Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.). “Are the banks just hanging up the consumers and depositors by their ankles and shaking them and just get every little dime out of their pockets as they can?”
Though Bank of America – the nation’s largest bank by deposits – has garnered the most public attention, other major financial institutions are making similar moves. Wells Fargo is testing a $3 monthly charge for debit-card use, while J.P. Morgan Chase is piloting a similar fee.
Bank of America has come under congressional fire in recent days, with Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) blasting the institution for its proposed increases and telling customers to leave the bank to protest the new charge."
Read more:

B of A scooped up Countrywide Financial in 2007, and Merrill Lynch in 2008 when financial mgmt companies were falling like so many leaves off trees in the Autumn. They were going to gobble up Lehman Bros too, but w no government backing, the deal fell through.

B of A has a history of questionable moves:
According to WIKI:

On August 3, 2009, Bank of America agreed to pay a $33 million fine, without admission or denial of charges, to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over the non-disclosure of an agreement to pay up to $5.8 billion of bonuses at Merrill.

Municipal bonds fraud

In 2010, the bank was accused by the US federal government of defrauding schools, hospitals, and dozens of state and local government organizations via misconduct and illegal activities involving the investment of proceeds from municipal bond sales. As a result, the bank agreed to pay $137.7 million, including $25 million to the Internal Revenue service and $4.5 million to state attorneys general, to the affected organizations to settle the allegations.
Former bank official Douglas Campbell pleaded guilty to antitrust, conspiracy and wire fraud charges. As of January 2011, other bankers and brokers are under indictment or investigation

During 2011, the company conducted or announced personnel reductions of 36,000 people, contributing to intended savings of $5 billion per year by 2014.

As a result of its federal bailout and management problems, The Wall Street Journal reported that the Bank of America was operating under a secret "memorandum of understanding" (MOU) from the U.S. government that requires it to "overhaul its board and address perceived problems with risk and liquidity management". With the federal action, the institution has taken several steps, including arranging for six of its directors to resign and forming a Regulatory Impact Office. Bank of America faces several deadlines in July and August and if not met, could face harsher penalties by federal regulators.
On December 2, 2009, Bank of America announced it would repay the entire $45 billion it received in TARP and exit the program, using $26.2 billion of excess liquidity along with $18.6 billion to be gained in "common equivalent securities" (Tier 1 capital). The bank announced it had completed the repayment on December 9. Bank of America Ken Lewis said during the announcement, "We appreciate the critical role that the U.S. government played last fall in helping to stabilize financial markets, and we are pleased to be able to fully repay the investment, with interest... As America's largest bank, we have a responsibility to make good on the taxpayers' investment, and our record shows that we have been able to fulfill that commitment while continuing to lend.

Bank of America was sued for $10 billion by American International Group Inc. in August 2011. Another lawsuit filed September 2011 concerns a total of $57.5 billion in mortgage-backed securities Bank of America sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

This is why people love to hate Bank of America!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

post op recap

Although my son recently wished me a "speedy recovery", I had to remind him thanks for the good wishes & all, but this total knee replacement surgery has an 8 week recovery time.
That's not an estimate-- it really takes that long for the leg to heal & become fully functional again.

I am still working out the right balance of the meds-- I hate to take too many of the big guns pain killers, but I need to be able to tolerate the physical therapy sessions.

If I take the "full dose" my eyes are @ half mast & I feel impaired- slow motion & the desire is to sleep.

If I take lessor doses, I need to take more frequent smaller doses & in therapy, I am feeling too much of the pain & *burn*--- some of the extreme bending moves bring my eyes to tears- just a trigger response to the intense pain of bending & pushing this freshly stitched up knee.

It is rough & slow & grueling at times-- so today I will up my Rx muscle relaxant dose for therapy & see if that helps. The therapists walk the tighterope of having the patient push it, without taking it into the realms of unbearably too much.
I will declare-- that's it, that is as far as I can stretch today..... because only I know the degree of pain any particular move generates.

 This could easily become a pity party-- but a friend mentioned how she knows someone who needs the surgery & has no medical coverage.

She will have to wait several years before she qualify for Medicare coverage.

It helped me put it in perspective-- it's a bitch, but it would be even more of a bitch to need the surgery & not be able to have it.

I will try to remember that when the therapist has me doing those moves that require deep breaths & ice to numb the pain. Make that muscle relaxant a double, please..

Thursday, October 6, 2011

checking in

Hey there vast readership! It is slow going this recovering from total knee replacement surgery.
Getting around on crutches is slow. Taking the big time pain meds messes you up, but so necessary after such a big/invasive surgery.
I can bend the knee 77 degrees. Big whoop, I know but that was up from 68 degrees.
They actually take a measuring gizmo to document the progress.
At this point having a successful poop w the pain meds onboard messing up the system is a big accomplishment.

Meanwhile I see Pain & Christie are out & Bachmann called North Dakota "a nation"

"Someone told me that last year that North Dakota was the only nation that actually was running a surplus. And it's because they're utilizing their natural energy resources," Bachmann added.
The congresswoman calling North Dakota a "nation" was clearly misspeaking. But more glaring: North Dakota was one of four states to run a surplus last year.

Poop, politics.... it's all related. 

Anyway... I'm in the wings, clunking along in the recovery phase.