Tuesday Open Thread

“The smaller the pond, the more belligerent the fish.”

–Craig Brown

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33 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    Stealth theocracy is alive in America. The June issue of Church and State arrived yesterday at my p.o. box. Among other stuff, it has an article regarding how one man has shut down much of the available reproductive health care in northeast Iowa. That man is Archbishop Michael Jackels of Dubuque. Much of the care for any matter in the area comes from Catholic hospitals. The bishops nationwide are cracking down on "immoral activities" that are at odds with Church teachings.

    These "activities" of course includes abortion. But also contraception, including placement of IUDs, and tubal ligations. One can reasonably assume that vasectomies for men are included. NE Iowa is described as slowly becoming a "contraceptive desert." 42% of the acute care beds in the entire state are in Catholic hospitals.

    Bear in mind that the potential for such occurrences exists here in Colorado. There are Catholic hospitals here. In addition to the above, if one has a living will, as I do, that says "pull the plug" when the end is near, should one expect a Catholic hospital to honor such a living will? As some of us age, we should be thinking carefully about these issues.

     

    • Gilpin Guy says:

      Thanks CB.  I find it intriguing that Protestant, white, rural Iowa is served by Catholic hospitals.  I would speculate that long term, the area will be depopulated as women move away from such archaic and restrictive social structures.

    • gertie97 says:

      About your living will, CHB: In my experience with a relative's death a few years ago, the Catholic hospital did honor it eventually. First we had to kick and scream before the ethics committee was finally convened. Once pulling the plug was allowed, it was another couple of days before he died. I remain undecided whether the hospital stretched the whole grim business out because of faith or because of profit.

      As for vasectomies, those don't require a hospital setting. I also suspect the old men in skirts would wink and look away from anyone who had one. Subjugating women is the goal, don't you know?

       

       

       

      • DavieDavie says:

        The aid-in-dying legislation passed two years ago highlighted the problem of having our Colorado health market dominated by faith-based hospital chains:

        Nearly one-third of Colorado’s hospitals are refusing to offer terminally ill patients the option of physician-assisted suicide — even though voters last fall overwhelmingly approved a ballot initiative legalizing the practice.

        And two of the state’s biggest health care systems, both faith-based, appear poised to bar their doctors from providing such services to patients at any of their facilities, under any circumstances — potentially running afoul of the new aid-in-dying law.

         Centura Health — Colorado’s largest health system, which operates 15 hospitals and more than 100 physician practices and clinics — told STAT it would “opt out” of offering aid in dying. The system is jointly operated by Catholic Health Initiatives and Adventist Health System, another faith-based group that opposes assisted suicide.

        Colorado’s second largest Catholic system, SCL Health, then put out a statement declaring that any patients requesting aid in dying “will be offered an opportunity to transfer to another facility of the patient’s choice.” SCL Health runs seven hospitals and dozens of clinics.

        I'm pretty sure Kaiser Permanente will honor my wife's and my living wills in the event they are needed, unlike Catholic hospitals…

        Living wills may not be honored if they conflict with the ERDs—but you are likely not to know that before a crisis. 

    • kwtreemamajama55 says:

      I get the point of the cartoon, dB, re: Catholic hospitals, but the caricature of the Pope and the headline “Rome in Politics”; is somewhat anti-Catholic.

      Most of the modern-day Christian Dominionists are Protestant Evangelicals who hate Catholics, Jews, Muslims,etc.

       

      Steve Bannon, former Trump chief of staff and current architect of spreading white nationalism in Europe, is virulently propagandizing against Pope Francis.

      Church-sponsored clinics and hospitals in the Denver area are a mixed bag on contraceptive services. Presbyterian St Luke’s offers “family planning” services. St Anthony’s, which is now a Centura hospital, does not. I’ve gotten great well-woman care from La Clinica Tepeyac, where Senator Dr. Aguilar used to work; but they don’t offer contraception. Grace Church is a megachurch that runs a decent low-income clinic; but no contraceptive services are offered.

  2. 2Jung2Die2Jung2Die says:

    Great news I believe – looks like they're dropping the recall against Tom Sullivan. I hope this has some general impact along with the specific. Recalls might be a good thing to do when it's necessary, if the legislator is a scumbucket whose very presence will stink up the legislature, but it just shouldn't happen over a defensible vote (even a few defensible votes) on bills.

  3. Mr. L. Prosser says:

    Read today former Western Slope native and happy emigrant Interior Sectretary David Bernhardt is in Vail for the Western Governors conference. He dangled a teaser about the BLM headquarters move to somewhere in the West. Gardner and Tipton always touted Grand Junction as the ideal site which was always a load of rotten gut piles. If there is any move it won't be the entire bureau and the new site for the unlucky will probably be either the Denver Federal Center or, taking in the politics of the current regime, Salt Lake.

  4. MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

    Ladies and gentleman, el Presidente of the United States of 'Merika: 

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      File that secret agreement in the same filing cabinet draw as Cory Gardner's insurance company letter and Joe McCarthy's list of 100 Communists in the State Department.

    • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

      Can we just starting calling him Kim Jong Un's fluffer?  

    • JohnInDenverJohnInDenver says:

      there were pictures of the document … and outlines of the provisions, which indicated pretty much what had been said:  little new, and only that Mexico will try hard to get clearance from its legislature in the next 45 days.

  5. DavieDavie says:

    Paul Krugman is mightily impressed with Elizabeth Warren and her proposals

    There’s a reason, beyond being smart and well-informed, that Warren is able to come up with so many interesting policy ideas. Namely, there is a huge gap between what inside-the-Beltway opinion considers serious policy and what actual policy researchers have to say. This creates what I think of as the Great Wonk Window: a surprisingly wide range of policy areas where a politician can be simultaneously radical by conventional political standards and solidly grounded in expert analysis.

    One example is taxation of the rich. Conventional wisdom is still obsessed with the notion that taxing high incomes and/or giant fortunes will have dangerous effects on incentives. Actual experts in public finance have, however, long argued that substantially higher top-end taxation is justified — and Warren devised her wealth-tax plan with help from Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman, superstars in the field.

    Another example is child care, where there is a large body of evidence that investments in child care pay back significant dividends in both the short run — by helping mothers remain employed — and in the long run, because well-cared-for children grow up into more productive adults.

    So as I said, there’s a surprisingly big window for politically radical but economically sound policy. And Warren clearly both knows that this window exists and is trying to use the resulting opening to promote her agenda.

    • He's not the only one. The NY Times had a nice opinion piece ruminating on how nice it would be to have a President who had a plan for everything, who thought things through, talked to real experts, and even if you disagreed with the plan at least it wasn't an off-the-cuff bit of fluff.

      • DavieDavie says:

        Are you referring to David Leonhardt?

        • Average life expectancy in the United States has declined over the last three years and is lower than it was in 2010.
        • Median household net worth declined 30 percent between 2007 and 2016 (the most recent year for which the Federal Reserve has released data). The combined net worth of the poorer half of households is negative, which means their debts are worth more than their assets.
        • Incomes for most households, after taxes and government benefits, have grown frustratingly slowly over the last few decades — considerably more slowly than the economy has grown. Only the affluent have enjoyed big pay gains.
        • Rates of economic mobility — the number of people who are climbing the income ladder — are lower in the United States than in Canada and much of Europe.

        In some fundamental ways, the American economy isn’t working for the majority of Americans. The best thing about Elizabeth Warren’s presidential campaign is that she is trying to offer solutions that match the scale of the problem.

        The status quo isn’t working, unless you’re already affluent.

      • VoyageurVoyageur says:

        Precisely.  I, for one, don't like Warren's wealth tax, which raises chump change when weighed against our deficit.  But the two of us could talk at length about the underlying issues.  Maybe we'd settle on a capital gains tax.  But can you imagine talking anything with the very stable genius?

        trump is stable, all right.  I spent many hours shoveling stuff out of the stables in our Phillips County farm growing up.  We didn't call the stuff I shoveled "genius," but yes, it smelled like Trump!

  6. MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

    Might I offer you some dressing for that word salad??

    USDA, trade officials can't explain Trump's promise of Mexican ag purchases

    During a House Agriculture Committee hearing today, Rep. Angie Craig (D-Minn.) asked top officials from the Agriculture Department and Office of the U.S. Trade Representative if they could clarify which farm products and how much Mexico would potentially be purchasing.

    “I don’t have any details to that regard,” said Gregg Doud, USTR’s chief agricultural negotiator.

  7. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    • VoyageurVoyageur says:

      Yeah, cuz thepolls showing Hillary winning in a walk were so accurate…

      • notaskinnycooknotaskinnycook says:

        She was winning 'til Comey sandbagged her with that "report" after mail ballots had gone out. I still blame him for the Screaming Yam and didn't feel bad at all when the Yam canned him. He’d served his purpose.

        • VoyageurVoyageur says:

          Agreed on Comey.  But re: polls etc.  Screw the predictions.  It ain't over till it's over.

          That aside, I tend to agree with Sudafed.  Yes, above all, I want to beat Cheetolini.  But I so want one of the Three Amigas to catch fire and give us some fun along the way.

          Go Amy.  Go Kamela.  Go Lizzie.

          We've now sent money to all three of them.  Let the best Babe win!

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