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Free Apps!!! The Whole Hog. August 31, 2014

Posted by voolavex in Economics, Social Issues.
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I do not own any mobile devices.  Primarily because I don’t need any.  I have a cell phone I hardly use and a nice MAC consoleI use at home.  Would I like an iPad – yes, because I am lazy and like to loaf and be on the computer in bed, but I don’t need one and I am not in any need of a smartphone – although they make photos much easier. I did have a laptop I never used much either. Full disclosure.

I stood with my best friend in line for the first iPhone.  They ran out and we left.  I was fascinated but not compellingly so – I went to events where folks – later on – played AB on their iPads and I was really excited (indication of shallowness).  I hinted and whined but got no offers so I shut up, went home and killed green pigs at the console.

This was just about the time we were all invited to “Like Us” on FB or “Follow” us on Twitter.  Easy.  Great way for biz to collect data but wait…..data.  Collect data?  What kind of data? Oh never mind.  Just press Like..  So we did.  Luddites didn’t but I suspect there will be a time it will happen.  As a former PR person I really admired how fast a business or person could get publicity without much work.  We did the work then; the “social media” does it now.

And then came the APPS.  Download the app.  Get the app.  Use our app.  In the car – try out our app.  The bank app, the grocery store app, the unlock your home app, watch your kids on the sly app, watch anyone on the sly app. Read a magazine on our app.  Order anything on our app. See how easy a colonoscopy is on the free app.  Mobile phone, tablet/pad – wait – there’s an app for that.  The catch – you gotta buy the device.  Oh yea – some things can be used/had/bought for your lame old sit at the desk/console computer, but not the kind of stuff you can get with a “FREE APP”.  And you can “scan” – just wave the mobile device over something and off she goes.  So you get discounts and insider offers and special perks (the now tiresome and mostly data collecting “rewards points”.  OMG – Pavlov was right.  The catch?  You gotta own some device to do all this.  In order to join this mobile app extravaganza – you have to go and get the device.  These cost money and there is no app for that.  And once you succumb, you have to have a plan.  So now you have bought the device and the case (I like Ghurka, Fendi or custom color leather) that you must have to have to flaunt your style and the free apps and wait for it…the plan.  Since I don’t have a plan I have no idea what they start at but $40 sounds about right, for which you get access (use of) to the carrier and a certain amount of data space.  The more space, the more apps you can get FREE but then the meter starts to tick.

Do I have to explain this?  You have been offered yummy, scrumptious candy on a stick (the perks offered by the apps that are FREE) but in order to have them, you must have the device and what good is the device if it has no plan to store data?  So the circle closes and you are chatting and killing pigs and taking selfies (I HATE this word) and giving money to all these vendors of devices and plans (the apps remember are FREE) agreeing to required contracts with fees to opt out and “friends who can’t get one so would you help”, who don’t pay the bill and before you are even old enough to suck back a martini – your credit is ruined and you are facing Judge Judy being called a moron.

Since it is de rigueur for any child over five to tote a cell phone and/or tablet (and in some cases required) this runs into money.  Serious money. So when you see a gaggle of goslings chatting to each other on devices – tack on $40 a month a piece. The cost of living increase con can rationalize it.

For me, however, the best part is that you got all this tech because you were persuaded by the people who profit into getting it.  Without the tech you cannot get the FREE apps.  So the very next time you see an ad for anything at all – offering the FREE app – just remember all the steps you took to have it and buy it and pay for it monthly.  Those apps are not really FREE.

 

Next blog.  Texting and terrorism.

 

In the New Yorker today – HCV News April 24, 2014

Posted by voolavex in common sense, Economics, Health, health care, Medical, Social Issues.
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The day after my post: The Cure. Your Liver.  $84.000.  The brilliant financial author James Surowiecki, wrote a piece on the Financial Page (p23) in the New Yorker. entitled “Biotech’s Hard Bargain”.  I  am most grateful to read a piece on the cost of HCV in such a prestigious and well read publication.  He brings a much needed reinforcement to the arguments of others who find the $84,000 price tag distressing.  In his piece he points out that Medicare is forbidden to bargain for better prices for drugs and that private insurers  are very upset and pharmacy benefit companies are suggesting their customers wait for a cheaper “cure”.  Pharma has tremendous pricing power and this is  one of the lures for investors.  Rather than dropping price, pharmaceuticals actually increase.  Wonder leukemia drug, Gleevac, has tripled since 2001. I would strongly suggest you read Mr. Surowiecki’s piece and see for yourself.  Some people want to wait until it is cheaper, but others simply can’t wait – and are on donor lists in serious need of a fix of any kind.  I am grateful to have my observations reiterated in this post. Thanks James.  The New Yorker is online, on newsstands and in the library – I invite you to read the Financial Page and my own post. And I wish all of you good health – at a price you can afford. 

Arrogance of Empire in the Land of the Free December 1, 2010

Posted by voolavex in common sense, despicable, Economics, freedom, Golden door, Politics, Politics & Religion, Social Issues, solutions.
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Each fabulous empire had it peak and then fell like the ones before it. Without this shit we would not have archaeology. Basic fact.

 It is audacious, therefore,  for this country to imagine it will last forever as the bright shining symbol of all that is good and great on this planet. We refuse or simply fail to see ourselves reflected in the mirror of  history. Other countries learn far better from their pasts and accept truths we think were made true at Disney Studios. 

As mentioned today in the media:  If the only reason for the GOP is to destroy the Dems –  a word of warning; they will  also fall on  their swords and we will have some kind of new and very scary government.  Our vaudeville Congress and “partiers”  have made us a joke worldwide for our retro revivalist politics, bigotry and narrow views.  Step back a little – We are no longer a great nation of hopes and promises kept – we are a nation of angry, obsolete petty snake oil salesmen – promises are made and the Loyal Opp makes it its job to see they cannot be fulfilled. 

This is no longer a country I recognize.  One party systems fast become one man systems and in this country we hold our politics in such high esteem we barely pay attention to how many rotten apples sit in the halls of  Congress waiting for job.   It must smell like hard cider by now.  I would advise those  southwest of our country – those who think they can achieve the American Dream to pack warmer clothes and keep moving until they hit Canada.

It is hard to continue loving a land that gave so much to so many only to have shot itself in the foot over bigotry and imaginary fears. Those who fear the  “Nanny” state are the ones who need supervision and limits the most.  People who know what their limits are have no reason to fear anything in terms of grift, graft and greed.  It’s not the crime that brings regrets to the political thieves – it’s the getting  caught.  The United States is out of control.  And it scares me to death.

The Right Stuff: 13 Reasons “WE” Won Back the House November 6, 2010

Posted by voolavex in freedom, health care, Jesus, Jews, Nobel Peace Prize, Politics, Politics & Religion, Social Issues.
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Barack Hussein Obama is the downfall of the United States of America.  That what they say.  That is why the GOP haunts the House.  But their justification for this is so clear and simple I felt I should share what I call the more correct views of the Loyal Opposition
 
  
1.  Wrong name.  Gall, nerve and audacity my ass.  That is
an UnAmerican name.
 
2.  Hawaii?  Maybe – but some reps have never even been to Hawaii
Elitist place to born.
 
3.  The Color.  Time to say it strong and say it proud.  He and his entire
Negro family are living in our President’s home.  Even the damn dog is not
only black but some kind of Kennedy gift.
 
4.  Harvard.  Get real.  Only welfare children and foreigners go to
Harvard now.  He is probably both. This is an elitist feel good charity college.
 
5. Law Review?  Never even heard of it.
 
6. Smoked the rope and inhaled the dope.  A typical n-word hobby.  Inner city-
that is straight outta Compton.  The GOP does not roll in Compton.
 
7.  Healthcare reform.  So now we are grouped into the same category as places like Argentina, Brazil Canada Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Mexico Panama, Peru Uruguay, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela , Greenland AND  Austria, Andorra, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal,[61] Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine[62], Belarus[63], Moldova[64], the United Kingdom.[65] . and Ireland.  Also Israel and that figures doesn’t it.  If you get sick in the US it is NOT our problem.  If you die broke.  We do not care.  If you have a baby and do not want it – leave it by the side of road.  You should not have opened your legs.
 
8.  Diplomatic dinners.  Not on our dime – go to Shakee’s or Henry’s Soul Cafe.  They are both in areas where you will not stand out.
 
9.  Trips.  Quite the globe trotter unlike previous presidents from our party.  Get real MISTER Obama – no country with values really wants people like you in their midst.  Read some real history and believe it.
 
10.  Queen Elizabeth.  The Queen is never to be touched.  Your wife had the kind of nerve reserved for Royal Families.  You do not know your place.
 
11. THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE.  Alfred Nobel invented dynamite.  Those folks in Norway should have blowed you up real good.  The committee that awards that stupid prize is clearly paid off by someone in the  commie shadows.  They keep giving it to Other Side Presidents.  That will change.
 
12.  Rahm Emanuel.  The Jew.  George Lincoln Rockwell – the assassinated founder of the American Nazi Party said it right when he created the term “N****r Jew Jazz” to describe that funky music.  Rahm Emmanuel had no business telling  anyone what to do.  He clearly did not know his place either.  You people take much more than we want you to have.  That will end soon.
 
13.  Basketball.  Next you will try to bring back the Negro League.
 
These are but a few of the egregious wrongs Mr. Obama has done to OUR country and now we will see just who buys their suits at Hart Shaffner and Marx, who sends their kids to private school and whose seditty (yes she is) wife AND mother-in-law shop at J.Crew.
 
Additions to these wrong acts and the harm to OUR country may be posted in the comments section.  If anyone from their side reads this – share it.  In fact share it with anyone you like.  Unlike much of  GOP info  it has been fact checked for facts when getting caught in a lie would require additional lies and money to fix.  We intend to bring in American values, Christian prayer and if we do not do another thing in the next two years, a new name for Jim Crow that we can pass as an earmark and then enforce.

*Eight Great Tomatoes for Nadya Suleman February 14, 2009

Posted by voolavex in common sense, guilt, health care.
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Nadya Suleman is beginning her journey to fame down the yellow line in the snow with passengers.  If this were the early 20’s she’d have already set her sights on Ringling Brothers and joined the circus side show by now.  She missed her decade and her destiny I guess.  She is here and now,  and because we know the world spins  forward, her own public dog and pony show has yet to reach its apex. And let’s face it; it’s hard not to watch.  So let’s talk about that.
 
First.  I seriously doubt  grandma Angela Suleman is blameless in this situation, but I can also say from an age standpoint she surely did not want babies in her late 50’s.  Six kids under 7 works for some people; usually the very religious or the very rich.  The litany of things Nadya has done over the last 8 years; degrees, school, worker’s comp, cosmetic surgery makes me wonder how she had time to get pregnant.  Seriously – being pregnant all the time is hard work.  Ask anyone with a bunch of kids.Two or three of these crumb snatchers seem to have spectrum disorder.  That’s not easy to handle.  Most autistic kids need extra time and attention.  Because I don’t know where they fall in the birth order I can’t say whether she knew about the health matters and should have thought twice before going on.  She went on anyway. She had octuplets.
Second.  A long time ago I nannied 4 little boys in a house just like the Suleman’s abode .  If I am not mistaken theirs is a 3 bedroom, one bath with a garage, on a lot the size of a postage stamp.  In my case, 4 little boys under 11 slept in one bedroom in bunk beds with a crib for the baby (who was two).  Both parents worked full time and I lived in and was paid weekly.  The dad was ex-military so once a month they went to Long Beach and stocked up at the Navy commissary.  No welfare.  No food stamps.  All boys with appetites and needs.  The big outing for all of us was the DAV thrift store.  Apparently Nadya’s big outing is the fertility clinic.  In between classes, pregnancies and plastic surgery. So what comes into my mind is something is amiss.
 
Third.  Leaving the lower portion of her body (aren’t you glad) – there is the question of her alleged plastic surgery.  I am kind of surprised there have  no before photos of Nadya floating around.  She looks pretty fake to me.  And she is no Angelina Jolie. It looks like cheek implants and probably lip puffer.  And it looks fairly recent.  (I would love a blepharoplasty for under my eyes. Ain’t gonna happy. Just saying).  I did notice she also has a nice French manicure – no clue what the current cost is on that – but say $30 a month.  Ten half gallons of milk.   I see a tummy tuck and bosom revamp in the future somewhere in the windmills of her mind.  We’ll see.
 
Fourth. I am pro-choice.  I am not pro-choice on the state’s nickel. I do not believe these innocent children are a gift from God – I believe they are exploited children with a severely disturbed mother.
 
Fifth.  As it appears she is already in the welfare system, I would go a step further and make all these hapless kids wards of the state until it can be determined she can care for them.   Can you feed six kids on $490 a month (plus WIC)? I think $120 a week is a stretch for six kids.  What is the quality of life for these kids? Begging for donations on a website while taking state funds sounds like wanting many bites of the apple -say about 14.  It also sounds a little bit crooked.
 
Sixth.  What about Dr. Kamrava? You can look him up at the Medical Board of California.  His record seems blameless.  I suspect that’s gonna change. But other than losing his medical practice or some other nasty fate – what does he care and why should he.?  Thus far nothing about IVF seems to require moral or practical advice. In the words of Tom Lehrer,  singing about Werner Von Braun “Once the rockets go up, who cares where they come down; that’s not my department says Werner Von Braun.”
 
Seventh.  Back to Grandma Suleman.  While I am not an advocate of physical abuse of any kind – someone should have knocked some sense into  her only child about 13 kids ago. Or got her a couple of pets.  Grandma is either a door mat, mentally disturbed ( genetic maybe), stupid or is on some sort of guilt trip whose bill has come due.  She blows hard about “not taking care of the kids anymore” but I seriously doubt she will go into the Witless Protection Program and get outta’ dodge.  If she is counting on media pay-offs; Nadya may hit the jackpot by selling her life and kids to some tab (like the Dionne’s).  Nadya however doesn’t seem to believe in the trickle down effect.  I doubt Grandma will see a penny.
 
Eighth.  Who is the father?  Does Nadya know?  Does the dad know?  I seriously question the motives and thinking of rich baby collectors like Mia Farrow and Brangelina but one thing may be said – they have plenty of money to behave as they do. Nadya Suleman is not going to be “Mother of the Year” this year or any other.  And sadly, in the big picture – I doubt the law, the state, her parents or anyone else can do much about it.  Watch this space.
 
*The name of this post comes from a tomato paste commercial jingle for Contadina .  by Stan Freberg from 1956.  It went: “who put eight great tomatoes in that little bitty can?”  www.lewrockwell.com.  I shouldn’t have to explain further.

Wal-Mart Saves Money November 27, 2007

Posted by voolavex in Deborah Shank, despicable, health care, Wal-Mart.
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This is the full text of an email sent to me by Wal-mart Watch.  This is a disgusting story of greed and immorality.  It asks you to donate – but I am not asking that of you – I ask only that you to write to Wal-Mart, email Wal-Mart, call Wal-Mart and otherwise bombard Wal-Mart asking them why this is happening? I could list other companies that are just as guilty – but clouding the issue is not constructive.  Go to the website if you want to donate  – but I am NOT asking you to do that.   Send your message of disgust to Wal-Mart.com. Their slogan: “Live Better.  Save Money”. Bullshit

Scroll down for the story. 

 Dear Chloe,

Seven years ago, a semi-trailer plowed into the driver’s side of Deborah Shank’s minivan.The 52-year-old Missouri Wal-Mart employee and devoted mother of three suffered permanent brain damage. Today she lives in a nursing home for round-the clock care, unable to walk, feed or dress herself.As the Wall Street Journal reported on November 20, it’s a tragic story – but it gets worse:

“Wal-Mart started out as one of the good guys in this story, paying almost $470,000 of Shank’s initial medical bills. But three years after Shank’s husband sued and settled with the semi driver’s employer, the retail giant changed hats. It demanded every penny back, plus interest and legal fees — more, in fact, than the $417,477 the settlement had placed in a special trust fund specifically for Shank’s future health care expenses.”Wal-Mart sued a permanently brain-damaged woman out of her medical care funds. Thanks to her former employer – the world’s largest retailer – Deborah’s family is sinking deeper into debt and Deborah will be completely dependent on Medicaid and Social Security for a lifetime of medical care.Wal-Mart Watch is collecting funds to help Deborah Shank’s family with her medical bills. Will you make a donation?

http://action.walmartwatch.com/deborahshank

Wal-Mart’s actions are horribly unethical and morally bankrupt, but the company says it’s legal – and it’s right about that.As the Wall Street Journal explains:The reason is a clause in Wal-Mart’s health plan that Mrs. Shank didn’t notice when she started stocking shelves at a nearby store eight years ago. Like most company health plans, Wal-Mart’s reserves the right to recoup the medical expenses it paid for someone’s treatment if the person also collects damages in an injury suit.

In cases like the Shanks’, where injuries and medical costs are catastrophic, accident victims sometimes can be left with little or none of the money they fight for in court. Company health plans are increasingly adopting language such as Wal-Mart’s, which dictates that it is to be paid first out of any settlement, regardless of what remains for the injured person. Moreover, the victim is responsible for all legal costs in pursuing the suit.

Last year the U.S. District Court sided with Wal-Mart over the Shank family – making its ruling just six days before Deborah Shank’s 18-year-old son, Jeremy, was killed while serving in Iraq.

The decision has forced Deborah’s family to take drastic measures. Earlier this year, her husband divorced her because of advice from a health care administrator, who said that she would qualify for more public assistance as a single woman.

The Shanks aren’t gold-diggers. They are an honest, hard-working American family trying to deal with a catastrophic event, and now they’re doing it with an empty wallet – thanks to Wal-Mart.

Please do your part to help the Shank family by making a donation now:

http://action.walmartwatch.com/deborahshank

This holiday season, Wal-Mart rolled out a new slogan: “Save money. Live better.”But who lives better with Wal-Mart’s low prices? Clearly, it isn’t Wal-Mart employees like Deborah Shank.Sincerely,

David Nassar
Wal-Mart Watch

Paid for by WalmartWatch.com, a campaign of Five Stones and The Center for Community and Corporate Ethics

To unsubscribe: http://action.walmartwatch.com/unsubscribe

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