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Just have not been able to face 1984

March 12, 2017

Well, I thought it would be good to re-read Orwell’s 1984, but I have not been able to face it. Every day seems like a 1984 reprise, so why submerge into that world just as I am heading off to sleep?? Am reading a history of bourbon whiskey by Dane Huckelbridge, and will report when I know more. Generally when “history” is part of the title, one can expect a nap to ensue soon, but Bourbon: A History… moves right along. Fine so far.

And now, having read more, Bourbon remains amusing. Despite some editing slips, we are now to the turn of the 20th century in the United States, and corn booze is ascendant. Here come the prohibitionists and the gangsters. Huckelbridge puts many asides in footnotes, and it is clear that these snippets wound up in the “not quite” bin, but provide pleasant sidelights to a bourbon-centric narrative.

Lives of a Cell (Lewis Thomas) held up throughout in terms of reportage and relevancy. Written between 1971 and 1973, that is quite a good prescient look at today’s world. What some might miss is that scientists have always been interested in just the facts, ma’m, so blowing irrelevant smoke is not the scientist’s forte. My foray into management gurus’ writings have more than warned me about the kind of reasoning and lionizing that soon falls flat on its face. Peter Drucker still holds up, but the first requirement of Drucker management is that you trust people. The folks who have followed Drucker have been backsliding on this trust equation, and have had little to offer, in my opinion. The genuine article tends to stand out, so I hope to find other works by Lewis Thomas to read. Checked my local library and struck out, but I will keep looking.

As a great example of recent irrelevant smoke, have you heard that Donald Humpty Trumpty’s “friends” can’t get loans? You mean they can’t get loans at the favorable rates and conditions they used to? Where tax breaks and depreciation pretty much led to a zero sum game for the cabal of Trump and his friends, while said Trump and friends were free to rake in the rent—or just walk away from failing properties and non-performing loans? I care not for Trumpty’s friends to continue to make profits at my expense, and endanger the financial system again ala 2008. Just sayin. Dodd-Frank should be strengthened, not weakened.

As usual, I get enough to get along, but my wishes for a fair society wind up in the ditch. I have just been through the medical insurance marketplace after my COBRA coverage expired. What I did not realize is that in order to qualify for Obamacare coverage, one must have some sort of projected earned or taxable income. This, in my opinion, leaves the most vulnerable and needy among us without health coverage, which leads to clogged emergency rooms and uncompensated care—which costs are shifted to those who can pay. Better we should put more money and effort into Medicare and Medicaid for all instead of lining the pockets of insurance executives. Whomever put the pharmaceutical and insurance industry in charge of medical care was dishonest and shortsighted—and knowing who made those decisions and knowing they are covered for life by Cadillac health coverage—easy to make decisions in an offhand manner that will never affect you and your family.

Dear One Percenters and Congress Critters, I care not about you and your families, mliswilltravel.

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