Just some random thinking going on today:
– We’re having window work done at the S-E’s palatial digs in the business depot. I saw a glass truck parked outside and decided it was time to get an answer to a question that has always bugged me.
So I asked the guy: “Why do they carry very delicate glass on the outside of glass trucks, when they put overstuffed furniture, anvils, and other unbreakables inside? Doesn’t the glass get broken when a rock flips up?”
“All the time,” was his response. “You’re driving along and it shatters.”
Looking inside the truck I could see the problem: It’s full of tools of his trade, which usually involves building window frames and lots of other stuff. And putting the glass on the outside makes it easy to get to. Man-handling a sheet of glass in and out of a truck is just asking for trouble — lifting it off the side is certainly easier, assuming it gets to where it’s going in one piece.
Bottom line: Don’t drive next to a glass truck. If that sheet of glass gets broken, you don’t want the shards landing on you, especially if you’re on a motorcycle. Ouch.
– This reminds me of another imponderable: Most of us, when we need a break from the world, take a walk out in nature to get away from it all. So where does a forest ranger go?
Same place, as it turns out. I asked the previous Ogden District Ranger, Ruth Monahan, and one of the fire management officers this same question and their answers were the same. The life of a modern forest ranger is so full of bureaucratic bumpf, they said, that they occasionally need to go out and kick the trees, check the mountains for air leaks and count the antlers on the deer, just to remind themselves that there really is a forest involved in their work.
– The Salt Lake papers are full of stories about Sen. Robert Bennett being challenged by Attorney General Mark Shurtluff. It promises to be an interesting campaign because Sen. Bennett — who regular readers know I’m not a huge fan of — is being accused of not being Republican enough.
The latest blow was the so-called Club for Growth’s attack on Bennett for daring to propose, and put his name to, a health care reform bill that includes government participation in some way.
Needless to say, all pure members of Bennett’s party believe in the free market completely. Any hint of government involvement in anything is nothing but socialism, if not Communism, and so Bennett is evil, or something.
Of course, the people saying this are the same folk who benefit from socialized highways, socialized police protection, socialized air traffic control, socialized health monitoring, disease prevention and education.
OK, maybe they didn’t benefit from the socialized education.
As I said, not a huge fan of Sen. Bennett, but any bill that includes government involvement in medical care is a mere recognition of ongoing reality — the government is already involved in medical care. It has to be. Medicare was founded, people forget, because the private enterprise system was letting old people die broke and miserable, the costs for what medical care they were able to get by begging or whatever, foisted off on the rest of us through medical institution cost sharing.
Since we were paying anyway, the idea was to let them be old and sick with some dignity.
What’s at stake here is whether private industry will be allowed to continue to profit obscenely from the parts government is not involved in, while foisting the high risk patients onto government-funded plans, such as Medicaid, or the state-run designated insurance plan because the death panels run by private insurance companies reject people who are – horror of horrors – already sick.
– Speaking of which, I find it fascinating that the thrust of a lot of this med reform, D and R, is to find more ways to keep pushing money at insurance companies.
Besides acting as a way to socialize medical care by funneling our money to prividors of medical care, and taking 15 to 20 percent off the top in the process, what exactly do insurance companies do?
Seriously, has a medical insurance company ever removed a splinter from a child’s toe? Or has it just told the doctor he’d be paid for removing that splinter after he submitted three claims forms, waited 30 days, and then had the claim rejected because he coded the splinter wrong?