Tea Party Success; Mother Shoots Children Commits Suicide After Food Stamp Denial

While the Tea-Party, Fox News, Grover Norquist, Republican legislators and the Republican presidential candidates among many will not lose any sleep over it, a 38yr old female shot her two children and then committed suicide herself in a Texas food stamp office on Tuesday.

As our Bought & Paid For Republican congressional leaders continue to crawl on their knees’ to Wall-Street and the Tea-Party the life and death of ordinary citizens is of little or no consequence.

The two children a 10-year old boy and 12-year old sister both still in critical condition in a Texas hospital are just insignificant collateral damage. Rachelle Grimmer 38-years is dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound her former children will be orphans, that is if they live to see any more of this life.

Rachelle first applied for food stamps in July but was denied as she did not supply enough information. She apparently had applied after relocating to Texas from Ohio the Department of Health and Human Services stated the last previous contact with her had occurred during mid November.

That was until she walked into the building housing HHS in Laredo, Texas on Tuesday. The once living family walked in at 5pm, Grimmer asked to speak with a new case worker and specifically not the one she had worked with in the past. She and her children were taken to a private room and shortly afterwards revealed she had gun and the situation escalated, yet no one knew how badly this would end after the seven-hour standoff.

The police were called and their negotiators were on the phone with Rachelle throughout the evening, however her frustration was self-evident. A supervisor at the Texas Department of Health and Human Services offered himself as a hostage if Rachelle would let the other 25 employees in the building go free, which she did. She also finally let the supervisor leave at 7:45pm while she and her two children remained. Imagine the feeling alone in that room in the building where you had come for help yet no one cared, in such desperation living a life so far off the page past the margins into nowhere. No one will ever know what drove Rachelle to do what she did however I can imagine many of her once fellow Americans feel the same desperation in this day and age.

After the last phone call with authorities at 11:45pm there were 3 shots heard by police and a swat team entered the building finding Grimmer and her two wounded children. At that time the children were in Very Critical condition and unconscious at this time there is no further word on their outcome.

Yet the Tea-Party can check off their box on another win column entry this poor woman is just now another statistic. In the Tea-Party world of social Darwinism just another weak human being has lost the race while the strong have survived, but at what price?

How dispassionate a society we have become as these types of events happen more and more often than not in this country.

Congress is still fighting to cut programs to the poor while giving or extending tax cuts to the rich. The top 1% have seen their income grow 270% while the poor only realized around 18% from 1970-2007. Even though the rich possibly moved by Warren Buffet who asked to be taxed more along with other millionaires and billionaires while their pleas have fallen on deaf ears.

There isn’t a Republican presently serving in congress with the backbone to stand up to the Tea-Party, Grover Norquist, Fox News and the rest of the, “I’ve got mine, get your own, oh and by the way I’m not going to give you a chance to get anything”, Neo-Conservatives.

President Obama said today that we are at a defining moment in our time and this country cannot turn its backs on the people of these lands we call America. Let anyone with a conscience hope and pray his words have not fallen upon deaf ears. Pray that this country still has a beating caring heart left for the sake of the people be they rich or poor.

For Rachelle Grimmer 38 and quite possibly her children who may also just become another statistic whether or not this country starts to turn back around will no longer be a possibility.

Wars are fought for no reason, banks are loaned billions of dollars for operating illegally with impunity and in truth Lobbyists are running this country.

What will it take for the United States of America to grow a conscience once again and realize we are all Human Beings worthy of the same opportunities and to begin to show some compassion for the less fortunate once more?

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.

U.S. Obesity and the Destruction of the Family Unit or a Different Ending

Recent data from the CDC 1985-2010 on obesity is a cause for concern by all Americans. As of 2010 there were approximately 33.8% adults classified as obese and 17% or 12.5 million of our youth ages 2-19 that fell into this classification. In showing that this is a national issue no state in the union had an obesity rate below 20% and 36 states had obesity rates higher than 25% also 12 states had a rate of 30% or more.

In 1990 the statistics were quite different when 10 states who participated in the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System reported obesity prevalence at <10%. Also no state reported a rate higher than or equal to 15%.

Jump to the year 2000 where no state had an obesity prevalence lower than 10%. While 23 states reported 20-24% and no state reported a rate over 25%.

By 2010 there were no states who reported an obesity prevalence below 20%. Thirty-six states were now reporting rates of 25% (equal to or greater).

The statistics were only reporting what society was already witnessing in their everyday lives. As these statistics grow so does our concern for our children, society and the economic impacts being found in hospitals and clinics nationwide.

In the U.S. Obesity is now estimated to cost $147 bill per year. Approximately 9% medical spending can be tied to this phenomenon. It is also estimated that the obese American spends $1500 more than the average or 41% more than what is considered the average medical cost of everyday U.S. citizens (Note approximately 2009 data).

Future Dire Consequences for the Human Race

In a study done by the Endocrine Society published March 23, 2011 it was found that the hormone Ghrelin is found to be low in obese females. The study while done on mice found that lower levels of this hormone reduced the fertility of the test subjects. While Ghrelin’s specifically cannot be tied to fertility of humans it does fall into the family of hormones involved in regulating reproductive functions in humans and animals.

The lead author of the report Hugh Taylor MD. of the Yale University School of Medicine stated, “While our study involved mice we believe our findings have significant implications for women. Our results suggest that low ghrelin levels could program the development of the uterus in the female children of obese women. These women may then be less fertile as adults”.

A recent study performed by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) recommends that young people should participate in physical activity of at least moderate intensity for 30 to 60 minutes each day. It is estimated that 300,000 Americans die annually as a result of a sedentary lifestyle and poor eating habits. This is more deaths than that from the result from infectious disease, firearms, motor vehicles, and illicit drug use combined

In some regions school age children receive gym classes only once every two weeks or once a month, when a holiday or a school assembly interferes. Prior to cost cutting measures being instituted only around 33% of students were considered obese this has now climbed to over 50% as standardized educational testing has taken on as the program of more importance versus physical education.

While the lack of physical activity is now being classified as a Major Health Risk little if anything is being done to address the issue. Yes bills are being brought forth across the country however they are gaining no traction and never reach fruition.

Sedentary lifestyles are predisposing Americans for diseases such as stroke, heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, various cancers, diabetes, depression, obesity, and much more.

American males watch on average 2 hours of television per day versus 2.4 hours for females. On top of this there is an average of 2 hours per day using computers, gaming and other social media.

Children and teenagers report on average spends 2.2 hr each day watching television, 1.9 hr each day reading or doing homework, 1.4 hr daily on the computer/Internet, 1.2 hr playing video games, and 1.1 hr daily talking on the telephone.

However the above stated data is self-reported and as with other studies of this type the figures are extremely questionable and have a higher propensity for underreporting by the study participants.

For instance another study reported found that time spent watching television, videos, DVDs, and movies averaged slightly over three hours per day among children 8 to 18 years old.

As our recent history shows we are an overly materialistic nation with to much emphasis being placed upon social status and conspicuous consumption. With two working parent households and also a 50% divorce rate all of this must be factored into the matter, however it does not point to a strong and engaged family household. Each and every day this is placing more and more responsibility on America’s children to raise themselves.

Our government via subsides and the like, reduces the overall costs for what are unhealthy foods while fruits and vegetables see none of these government incentives. We as a people want instant gratification and fast food with super-size proportions having their establishments on every street corner are not helping matters.

Can parents be expected to become more engaged in their children’s lives including proper diet and exercise, it doesn’t look promising.

How can parents restrict or control their child’s dietary intake, television viewing habits, computer, video games etc, when they are almost never around the children. Can they become involved in their children’s PTA or other school activities when their jobs will not allow for such involvement as they consume more and more of their time?

Is there any way to improve our lives and those of our children

Maybe American society can consider modifying their lifestyles from todays present mindset. If our children are one of the most important facets in parents lives as is so often spoken of possibly if this is in fact true there may be a sliver of hope.

Is it possible a more expensive or larger home, car, electronic gadget, clothing and high paying or all-time consuming jobs could be of less importance in our lives in the future. Could the family unit again become just that, where parents are actually engaged in all facets of their child’s life. If a little less income where brought into the family household could the parents then lead by example on diet and exercise among many activities, as they might then have the time.

Americans are given one shot on this planet will wealth and materialism be their legacy. Or maybe the legacy could be that of an engaged human being living life to the fullest even though one’s bank account or house might not be as large or they drive a cheaper car? Could two or even (Gasp) only 1 child that could receive more of a parent’s time and love than 2 or more be a consideration?

One can only hope and I only hope the best for all Americans and God bless all of the parents ( of which I am one) on this planet your job is more difficult than any CEO. Sometimes ideas may be unrealistic however in this case can we afford not to take some chances?

THE IMPORTANCE OF BOARD CERTIFICATION! A Beginning Series of Posts in regards to Medicine today!

Is your doctor Board-Certified?

Are you aware you can check this as every state in the USA has a government website available for you to check.

From this you can research the doctor’s educational background along with their academic achievements, hospital privileges, Board-Certifications as well as any disciplinary actions within the last ten years.

All state governments have a website to check on your prospective doctor. In Florida just type; fla state medical license check. From there enter the doctors name it’s always a good idea to do a five minute check ahead of time to get good quality care.

If a medical doctor graduates from medical school with No Fellowships (specialties) there medical education stopped the day they left medical school and after their residencies.

To make sure you are getting good quality care five minutes of your time will be more than worth it.

I would strongly advise that you Never see a specialist who is not Board-Certified in their chosen specialty. This certification shows that the physician has had continuing education and is up on the latest treatment protocols. What works and what isn’t so rather then spending months and getting no good results or becoming sicker and possible progressing to a terminal state or worse. It’s always better to check out & verify you have chosen the best you can find in your area who will also accept your insurance.

You can also find out if your prospective physicians is what is called in the trade a “Procedural Doctor” not a good sign. If you are admitted hospitals will and do refer their inpatients to Non-Board Certified doctors. Some Gastroenterologists are known for this, your doctors history might show that they have hospital privileges at 3 or more hospitals. Many are not Board-Certified, their income is made by performing procedures not seeing patients at their practice. Many who have outdated medial education more bad signs.

Procedural Doctors take a little more research however this can be easily done. You can check on their practice and how many patients they see annually, low numbers are a cause for concern.

If you find a Procedural Doctor, promptly turn around and head the other way.

This is also why I strongly Advise that if possible have a Patient Advocate if you spend anytime even just hours at a facility. If educated just minimally they can remember to ask questions and watch out for you during your stay. Everyone is thrown a little off guard by hospital and medical settings so an Advocate is worth their weight in gold.

How many malpractice claims has the physician had more than 2 or 3 in ten years is a cause for concern. Where did they go to medical school, where did they do their Fellowship (specialty training) or residency. How many Academic appointments have they received? Are they affiliated with a teaching hospital or university (A Very Big Plus!).

During most occurrences you will be able to ask the hospital what specialist they are referring you to and whether they are Board-Certified? If they are not you have the right to ask the question, refuse that doctor and ask for only a Board-Certified doctor. This will not create a delay in your care however it will provide for a more thorough productive procedure with better treatment protocols and in the end a healthier patient. You are paying for this adventure Please be prepared have a friend act as your advocate if needed.

Your advocate should have the time available to spend 8-10hrs a day with you. Having an advocate involved will Greatly Benefit and Enhance your stay which should produce a more promising outcome to a stressful experience. If your dressings are not being changed, your medications are not being distributed in a timely manner, etc. All of these situations can be tactfully handled by your Patient Advocate. Believe it or not I was hospitalized with a condition that affects over 5 million American citizens per year. Yet I had to call and instruct their dietetic staff on what foods I should not be given among other aspects. Even after speaking with their dietetic staff they still immediately sent me food that would only have made my condition deteriorate and potentially worsen via additional infections (Bezoars). Again this occurred after they were instructed on the proper diet for the condition. This was a large urban hospital in one of the largest metropolitan areas of the USA. It took them a full 3 days to finally get my diet correctly addressed and this was No Exotic condition 5 million US citizens suffer from this annually yet it took a Major metropolitan hospital 3 days to feed a patient the proper food, Unbelievable but True.

Trust me from real life experiences a Board-Certified physician and a Patient Advocate can prove to be a real life saver if you are hospitalized.

Learn to research via easily accessible Internet resources take notes before your doctor’s visit. In today’s world of medicine 5-10 minute doctor visits Do Not Provide comprehensive medical treatment. Just because someone has graduated medical school does not make them GOD, so don’t expect them to be, ask questions, get a second opinion.

Educate yourself and those that you might call upon during a medical emergency.

While medicine has found outstanding cures and treatments for various diseases in recent history. Medicine along with the patient care on the whole in the last 15-20 years has fallen dangerously low on the tree for which patients suffer the consequences. There are now many doctor’s practicing who are in fact Dangerous. However as many of you possibly have experienced physicians will not speak the truth about their colleagues (they never do). It is Your job to educate yourself and those that you love, if you fail to do so it will be at your own peril or possibly a loved one or child.

Be assertive ask questions and be ready to say NO or to point out poor medical care. While even at the hospital you have the right to call for the Attending Physician (doctor on duty) to voice your concerns. You the patient have Rights, exercise them believe it or not many hospitals will respond appropriately to an assertive patient or Patient Advocate. More often than not you will receive better care then the patient who allows themselves to be treated like livestock at a farm.

Also be aware that numerous tests are performed only to protect the doctor and have nothing to do with your medical condition, treatment or outcome. If you are being scheduled for a test ask what it has to do with you care. On the other hand are you aware of the thousands of Perfectly Good Gall Bladders that are removed daily because physician fail to perform a simple HIDA exam to confirm their diagnosis. Often many doctors do not perform this non-invasive procedure. Patients then endure an invasive surgical procedure as well as having the possibility of a Post-Op infection kill them or contribute to the deterioration of their condition, all because a licensed medical professional failed to do their job. Ask questions, during a recent stay myself over two days I requested over ten times to be weighed. This was because of the fact that I was to be anesthetized and the anesthesiologist needs this important information as it is Crucial. Even though I continually tried to get my weight charted this never occurred, why, well I truly have no answer. Someone however entered false data on a medical chart and even after notifying the hospital of this no action whatsoever was taken. Because of this failure to get my proper weight charted I was Over-Anesthetized with propofol an Excellent medication, the patient goes under quite easily and comes out very cleanly. After this procedure this was not the case it took the staff over 20-25 minutes to bring me back around. This after only 2 months earlier the same procedures were done with the same medication from which I awoke Extremely lucid with little or no adverse reactions. It’s also of note that the Non-Board-Certified physician had performed 2 procedures of which only 1 was actually needed. However the doctor was a Procedural Doctor, more procedures equal more money in his pocket. This was verified by a practicing specialist of over 25 years with impeccable credentials who was utterly amazed at what had occurred.

Also remember the saying, ” If there isn’t a picture it didn’t happen”. In medicine, ” If it isn’t Charted it didn’t happen” if there is a problem with your care make sure it is CHARTED. Otherwise it did not happen.

I will be writing more postings on the state of medicine in the coming days that hopefully someone will find useful.

Do your research, Ask questions prepare for the worst that hopefully will never occur. I am not advocating for anyone to become paranoid or obsessive only to use a few minutes on the Internet to become a better educated patient who will receive excellent care during a trying, stressful experience. In the end you or a loved one will be better served for just a few minutes of research.

I only hope for the best outcome for you or a loved during your medical care and experiences.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.

Well it has happened Turkey has entered into the Iraq War, thanks George!

It is now being reported that Turkish F-16 planes loaded with bombs have taken action against the Kurdish PKK fighters in the northern Iraqi territories along with Cobra helicopter gun ships. Of course we can thank the world’s largest arms dealer for supplying them with their weaponry; this of course is the United States of America.

This apparently began on Sunday as the Turkish military has taken it upon themselves to attack the Kurdish rebel positions as the Iraqi government and the hegemonic overlord the USA have failed or not wished to be bothered by the complaints by Turkey. Read more of this post

Disease knows no Socio-Economic boundaries

Disease knows no Socio-Economic boundaries and these diseases will infect anyone regardless of wealth or stature. Diseases only want to infect, grow, mutate, multiply and live on to infect another host without regard to social stature. So for those Americans who say I have mine the hell with the poor, remember that by not addressing the healthcare crisis you or your child may die. Read more of this post

$500 Million Pledged for Mexico and the lost War on Drugs

Hidden within President Bush’s $46 billion dollar budget request is a $500 million dollar funding package for Mexico and the lost war on drugs. Members of Congress already weary of the costs of the Iraqi conflict are looking on in dismay at the $500 million dollar request as well, which they complain was negotiated in secret meetings between the White House and the Mexican government.

The United States already has the distinction of being a nation with more of its citizens incarcerated than any other industrialized nation and these funds would only exacerbate an already alarming trend. Read more of this post

Breeding Terrorism over 3.1 million Displaced Iraqis Courtesy of the USA

There are over 1.1 million internally displaced Iraq citizens many of them of the Shiite sect. Although the Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki is of the Shiite sect he does not seem to be overly concerned with their plight and daily suffering. The number of displaced has grown dramatically since the bombing of the Shiite shrine in Samarra in February 2006.

They have been left to fend for themselves drinking brown polluted water that they have retrieved from local ditches. This ingestion of the local water from ditches as well as the millions of flies increases their probability of incubating a plethora of diseases to add to their plight of suffrage. Read more of this post

Screw the Uninsured working class poor let them get a job!

There are so many American citizens that will recite that they have made it and have a home and health insurance. They will often say that the uninsured are not their problem and they do not want to pay increased taxes to deal with the 46 million uninsured Americans. They will say that they worked hard to get what they have and the uninsured are lazy and need to get a job so they will quite complaining all the time.

There is a problem with this argument as disease knows no Socio-Economic boundaries and these diseases will infect anyone regardless of wealth or stature. Diseases only want to infect, grow, mutate, multiply and live on to infect another host without regard to social stature. So for those Americans who say I have mine the hell with the poor, remember that by not addressing the healthcare crisis you or your child may die. Read more of this post

The United States of America and the Functional Illiterates who contribute to its Decline

Functional illiteracy in the United States is growing at a rate of over 2 million new inductees per year into its ranks and the tide will only grow stronger if current educational policies are not changed to address the problem. The Presidential legislation of No Child Left Behind is not working and the country as a whole is now and will in the future suffer the consequences.

Statistics show that functional illiterates in this country;

  1. Constitute 70% of the prisoners in state and federal prisons
  2. That 85% of juvenile offenders are classified as functionally or marginally illiterate
  3. That 43% of those with the lowest literacy skills live in poverty
  4. Over 42 million American adults can’t read
  5. 50 million read at fourth or fifth grade levels
  6. That the total number of functionally illiterate adults increases by approximately 2.25 million persons every single year Read more of this post

Veto of Children’s Health Insurance Program, screw’s 6 million children

Over 43 million American people lack health insurance including 6 million children or 9% of our young adults in the USA.

It was six years into his presidency before George W Bush grabbed his Veto pen and today was another instance. However when he Vetoed this bill it was behind closed doors with no media or news coverage, I for one would imagine he was ashamed and attempting to hide from the world this day.

The bipartisan bill approved by the Senate was veto proof, yet the House of Representatives lacked the needed votes to override this miscarriage of justice on our fellow Americans, including 6 million children.

The cost of the bill would have been funded by 61 cents to a dollar per pack tax on cigarettes. I for one smoke and would welcome another reason to quit this disgusting habit which has killed millions.

George W Bush has not used his Veto pen with regularity as he has mostly gotten what he wanted and the then Republican controlled congress gave it to him with a gleam in their eyes. But now the stakes have changed and he is further distancing himself from the American people he swore to protect and serve.

He has only grabbed his little buddy the Veto Pen four times during his presidency. If it’s not about making money foreign bases or oil fields, well you just can’t seem to get his interest it seems.

Embryonic Stem cell research, Troop withdrawals, easing restraints on federally funded stem cell research…NO NO NO

I have one grown daughter and she has health insurance, I also have a conscience and compassion for the 43 million American citizens and the 6 million children of this nation who do not have health insurance.

What about you?

To the Bush Administration Governor Corzine of New Jersey will sue over SCHIP (State Children’s Health Insurance Program)

October 1, 2007

Governor Jon S. Corzine stated today in part:

“SCHIP is an unqualified bipartisan success in New Jersey and in states across the nation, and the Bush Administration’s determination to pursue a course of action that will harm our children’s health is incomprehensible. This same Administration previously signed off on our decision to cover the 10,000 kids they are now seeking to kick out of SCHIP, and the lawsuit we filed today demonstrates that we will simply not let that happen. Washington should be a partner to states that are trying to cover more children, not an opponent, and I urge the President to reverse course, withdraw the letter, and sign the bipartisan legislation before him.” Read more of this post

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