Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Choice, the Right to Life, and the Texas Futile Care Law

In the Gimp Parade, Blue tells us about Little Emilio and the Texas Futile Care Law. Ah, the politics of life in a state that provides only the federally-mandated minimum of resources!

The Texas futile care provision makes for some ironic situations, that's for sure. Here we are, in a state in which a pregnant woman told her fetus has a lethal condition would face tremendous odds trying to secure an abortion, if she wanted one, and yet the state has no problem with sanctioning death for the sake of cost-control. And the Catholic-run hospital is fully on-board with the futile care law. There could be no better illustration that current abortion politics are not about the right to life, but about who gets to make the decisions regarding life. Apparently, the state of Texas and the Catholic Church think that decision should rest with (usually male) doctors and government officials. One might think that institutions that truly support the right to life would be generous in making provision for the necessities of life for those who can't get them without help. But if one lived in Texas, one would know what a silly notion that is!

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Gimp Parade: Euthanasia in Oregon

Via The Gimp Parade: Euthanasia in Oregon, a cautionary tale regarding euthanasia and the intentional failure to provide medical care for the disabled. As Blue points out, what happened to Tracey could happen to any of us should we lose the ability to speak.

Friday, March 09, 2007

So-So Security

Morgan Dawn tells us about an article attacking Social Security Disability claimants. The article is a blatant "lucky duck" argument striving to refocus outrage from the greedy to the needy. Author Melanie Scarborough displays an astounding viciousness regarding the social consequences of disability. She apparently thinks that people with mental illness or autism are just milking the system, to judge from her assessment:
The guidelines say “social functioning’ includes the ability to get along with others, such as family members, friends, neighbors, grocery clerks, landlords or bus drivers.

“You may demonstrate impaired social functioning by, for example, a history of altercations, evictions, firings, fear of strangers, avoidance of interpersonal relationships or social isolation.”

Why should anyone collect a check from taxpayers just for being a jerk?

In determining mental disabilities, examiners also consider the applicant’s “concentration, persistence or pace.” So work slowly and give up easily, and you might be rewarded with a monthly check.

Scarborough also shows that she has no idea whatsoever how disability for the sake of SSDI is determined. She complains that the list of conditions for which one may receive disability is so "exhaustive that almost everyone has some condition by which they could claim to be disabled." I'll be glad to introduce her to the widow of a man who died from complications of EDS. During the final years of his life, unable to work or even to sit up on his own, he was repeatedly denied benefits until his lawyer managed to bring him in, on a gurney, before the judge who finally realized he was looking at a dying man. The first check came after his death. If that list is so darn exhaustive, how does it miss chronic joint dislocation and organ failure as symptoms that indicate a person can not work for a living?

Insisting that few people have disabilities, she then cloaks her distrust of people with disabilities with a false concern for those with "genuine disabilities" such as MS and Down's Syndrome. Everyone else, she believes, are "chiselers." And a much worse problem than CEOs draining the life blood out of corporations despite their incompetence on the job. Lets see, the people I know getting SSDI get in the neighborhood of $700 a month. That means that, in 10 years time, they have received about $84,000. That's penny ante stuff for any real cheats. Just ask former Home Depot CEO Robert Nardelli.


Over at Gimp Parade, Kay shared with us a comment from last spring from AJ. AJ is not only piously concerned that Kay is bumming down his/her religious high, but has also added to the English language.


Quadra--meaning 4

Pologic--meaning "of a study," like in anthropologic or sociologic

Thus, "quadrapoligic" must mean the study of 4 or perhaps study through the application of 4, and is a specific branch of numerology.

Thanks, AJ! My Word Power hasn't been so increased since I last came across an ancient Reader's Digest.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Happy happy, joy joy

I lost a thumb splint. For two days, my poor left thumb went unsplinted, though I did wrap my hand in co-ban in a sad attempt to keep my thumb from hyperextending. Not only does wrapping one's hand in co-ban not keep a thumb with delusions of freedom from trying to make a break for it, but it is awfully inconvenient when taking care of any sanitary matters.

But today, huzzah, I found it, a bit mangled but straighten-outable. And thus my thumb is once again held captive to the rest of my hand.

So, that's today's good news. It doesn't quite counterbalance the news that my house needs leveling, but between the house needing leveling and me having lost the thumb splint, the loss of the splint was of far more immediate consequence.

In other news, I'll be at the TACIL/SILC conference Monday. I don't plan to go to the Tuesday tour of the Texas Capital, because 1. I've seen it and 2. the thought of any extra walking is enough to make me happy to be sitting.