What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Linkee-poo without a clever title

Black Angel, "a 22-minute short film attached to The Empire Strikes Back's European and Australian theatrical runs in 1980." Long thought lost to the ravages of time, now found and restored. (Grokked from John)

The Northwest Indian College Space Center. There's the story about how the US spent a few million to com up with a ballpoint pen that would write in zero-g, the Russians just used a pencil. Note, people who say that never tell you want they did with the shavings. In this case, a poor, reservation community college competes against the well funded, well heeled schools in NASA competitions. "That resourcefulness, borne out of poverty, has helped the Northwest Indian College Space Center outperform some schools with far greater resources. That gumption is what caught NASA’s attention." These are the people who will help solve the next Apollo XIII. Also, not all the students (not all are kids) are going into STEM areas, but the program has shown them what they can be.

I guess all those hours playing tetris when I was younger weren't wasted after all. (Grokked from Tor.com)

Gov. Brownback may have a lotta ideas, but he ain't sharing. All while his state continues down the economic drain because of his enactment of "strict" conservative economic ideas. Dear Kansas, the rest of the country is doing better.

And because we still need to pick on the poor, "The Texas state House on Monday passed a bill that would add a label to the insurance cards of individuals who purchased health insurance plans via an exchange established through Obamacare." With a special addition if you're getting subsidies. The explanation doesn't hold water. "'Other than creating a group that you’re going to discriminate against, I don’t see any purpose for indicating that people are getting a subsidy,' Jose E. Camacho, executive director of the Texas Association of Community Health Centers, told the Texas Tribune." Yep, that.

Well, here's an interesting way to handle health insurance costs when an employer goes on a self-pay plan. "When hospitals send invoices with charges that seem to bear no relationship to their costs, the (ELAP) tells its clients, generally medium-sized employers, to just say no." Well, actually they figure a reasonable cost based on Medicare payments and then sending that. Note, this isn't without risks. "Normally customers who don't pay bills get hassled or sued… (the hospitals) hire collection agents and threaten credit scores." Now, "ELAP agrees to handle all hospital bills for an employer and to defend workers from collections in return for a percentage fee tied to total hospital charges." Note, while they have lawyers and all, and are winning some successes, nothing is guaranteed. And most times you got to a doctor or to a hospital, you sign an agreement to pay any part of your bill that your insurance doesn't cover (just read those documents healthcare providers have you sign, usually now once a year). Note also, some healthcare providers can refuse certain types of insurance. I expect to see ELAP customers join the list of those insurance companies on the bad list.

Seymour Hursh is saying that the Osama bin Laden raid wasn't exactly what we were told.

Or maybe not. And interview with Seymour Hersh about his article. (Grokked from Robert J Bennett)

Ah, those lovable Oathkeepers. Well, they seem nice. Seriously, we've gone from wanting to relive our own Revolution, now we want to re-enact France's Reign of Terror.

There was this meme where as people called President Obama a socialist, that may people said, "Nope, he's pretty much in a centrist right position" (John Scalzi talks a little about how far to the right the country has skewed and where that leaves many of us centrist). You know, somewhere around Nixon. They laughed and laughed. Okay, how about this? "The FBI breached its own internal rules when it spied on campaigners against the Keystone XL pipeline, failing to get approval before it cultivated informants and opened files on individuals protesting against the construction of the pipeline in Texas, documents reveal." Let's see, when was the last time the FBI was put on the trail of domestic opposition? Yea, that's when those rules the FBI violated were put in place. And, yes, I expect President Obama will approved the Keystone XL right after the 2016 election (unless there are other major oil spills between now and then). (Grokked from Vince)

Tweet of my heart: @Stonekettle You know, one or two more gun incidents involving George Zimmerman and I'm gonna start thinking this guy might be the problem...

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