In a famous letter—the one that holds that the United States “gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens”—George Washington offered a benediction:
May the children of the stock of Abraham, who dwell in this land, continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other inhabitants, while every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and fig tree and there shall be none to make him afraid.
Health Insurance bulls#$%$#: I spent about one hour on the phone today with Anthem Blue Cross, trying to straighten out an innocuous claim that I'd mailed in over a month ago for a doctor visit for Sophie. I won't bore you with the details, but I finally got a supervisor who assured me that there had been a mistake, we apologize for the inconvenience and I will fix this right now, today. I hate to be a conspiracy theorist, but I swear there's something systematic going on at Anthem with Sophie's file. I can't remember a single claim in the last five years that hasn't been contested, had some sort of "error" or needed to be argued. I eventually always get a check or the situation fixed, but it makes me wonder... I wouldn't be surprised if someone told me there's a large binder with a big fat X on it, under Sophie's name. Wear the mother down, it reads on the first page.
Today I read an article in the business section of the Los Angeles Times newspaper about the insurers' power over state legislators and, therefore, rates. Only 19 states in the country (and California is NOT one of them) have 'prior approval' authority over medical premiums. What that means, in a nutshell, is that insurance companies can pretty much do as they please and hike up rates however much and whenever they choose. How do they do it? Well, according to this article " Since 2003, insurance companies and health maintenance organizations have given more than $42 million in state-level campaign contributions, often targeting lawmakers who sit on the committees that decide how much power regulators will have. "
That makes me sick. And I think it's perfectly apropos that the formatting of this whole section is weird and beyond my control. It's the insurance company, dammit!
On Brain physiology and politics: After spending three weeks in the south and with my family, many of whom are very conservative, I'm convinced that one's political leanings must be something predetermined and fixed in one's brain. I don't think I'll ever agree with a damn thing that my parents believe regarding politics and I'm sure they feel the same way about me. Attributing our differences to brain chemistry is, honestly, the only way I can deal with it without going completely mad.
Words and phrases I love right now: going mad, madness, dreadful, Holy Moly, Holy Crapola,