Monday, June 19, 2017

Health Care - where is it going?

The health care proposal in the House was quickly scuttled, the Senate version of the American Health Care Act is next with some tweaks. Moderate Republicans are going slower in states with constituencies that might be slightly miffed if they just rid of the whole ACA thing aka "ObamaCare." This is an arcane subject for me. One of the keys of the Trump Agenda seems to be undoing anything in the Obama legacy arena. Next up is Cuba and a return to the Cold War days. I guess there were no casino/hotel deals in the offing. There goes my cigar. How can I lose weight again?

78 comments:

  1. A very active and unusual administration so far. When Trump
    tweeted a threat that he had tapes of Comey, comey said, "My
    God, I hope so!" A day later, Trump announced he would say if he had tapes or not. That was month ago. Where are the
    tapes? Were they ever? Are they ashes in a lead safe under the Caribbean? Did Sean Spicer swallow and digest them?
    Just curious...

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  2. He probably has tapes of Bigfoot too. Nessie, Elvis, the lost Beatles album...

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    Replies
    1. What's the deal with Cuba? Idaho agriculture was lining up some good deals down there. Now Idaho agriculture won't even have healthcare. Its OK, we
      gave him 60% of the votes and expelled the two counties that voted for Hillary...

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  3. Looks like Puerto Rico might become the 51st state but why would they want to?

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  4. Color me confused. Actress Lee Meriweather is now Lee Meriwether? Holy Batman!

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    Replies
    1. I thought she was always Lee Meriwether. She was born
      to Claude and Ethyl Meriwether in May 1937. (in the
      most familiar dimension and universe). :) Like many,
      I go by the nickname Bob. I suspect Reddit has been
      spelling it backwards though...

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    2. It's funny but when you google it her name comes up both ways. I remember the "weather" spelling so let the Reddites make of that what they will.

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    3. If you google the way I remember it some entries with both names come up as a point of clarification but they both refer to the same actress. The google search engine makes everybody happy I guess.

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    4. Meriwether is an old name arising at least as early as Evil King John in England. There are several variants in spelling, including merryweder meriweather, meriweather etc. For example, the US
      explorer Meriwether Lewis, was named after his mother Lucy's surname; she was born in 1752, so it
      has been around for awhile. I'm not a snooty HS
      English teacher, so I accept any phonetic spelling.
      Sort of like the spelling of to, too and two. Knew
      a secretary, couldn't spell, used MS spellcheck.
      She would write stuff like "Too of you are assigned
      two attend if you want too. Which checked out fine.
      Google handles things like Micheal and Michael, which I can never sort out...although it is claimed that one derives from Irish and the other Scottish.
      Along those line we ponder colon and semicolon;
      would a semicolonsocopy be a condensed procedure?

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    5. Oh God we're going on too long about this! It's turning into a subreddit. It's simply a memory thing from the Barnaby Jones era. I accept your elucidation. Now can we please turn the topic over to 4-Hour Erections?

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  5. Wondering if Guiness has a category for longest colonoscopy in terms of time. Often curious. An hour, an hour and a half? More propofol.

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    Replies
    1. My guess- that one Rodman had done in North Korea.

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  6. Replies
    1. Good to know. Some of the police departments aren't fully ready to deal with these things. Kibbles 'n Bits?

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    2. If you have trouble with a Yonkers coyote, there is
      a little girl in my home town that can help.

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    3. That house ain't gonna be robbed.

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    4. Would walking your coyote lessen your chances of
      getting mugged?

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  7. Are you an organ donor? Probably not the best thing to donate a liver that's been through years of Christian Brothers.

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    Replies
    1. I doubt even the landfill would want my organs.

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    2. If you are looking for cheap, but probably unmatched
      organs, the third world is the place to go. Its like those movies
      about organ harvesters in the horror genre. Guy wakes up in a tub of bloody water organless. Might
      as well watch TV bowling, ya know?

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    3. We note while on the subject, that the unconventional Christopher Hitchens donated his body to some med school for students to hack on.
      (which brings us back to B movies: the old English
      grave robbers supplying Dr. Frankenstein. T'was the
      poet John Donne that noted 'death be not proud'.

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    4. My mother's old joke. The news wasn't making any sense, people, life. "Maybe we're all dead and don't know it."

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  8. Senate GOP is playing their healthcare bill close to the chest..strategy is to give Dems 10 minutes to review it
    before voting.

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  9. The GOP healthcare bill is basically about letting people die. Nobody deserves healthcare. Sick people don't deserve healthcare and healthy people can have it if they're willing to pay for it.

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  10. No committee hearings, no input from the public. Just move it for a vote in about a week. 'Nuf said.

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    Replies
    1. The handwriting is on the wall. "Doctor, how much will
      a colonoscopy cost me, I have Trumpcare". "Well Mr.
      Z-Man, the cost is a secret, only McConnel and Ryan know." "Well, who do I write the check to?" "You can make that out to Trump Hotels, International".

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  11. Maybe Trumpcare should send out basic primers on human anatomy since there's been a lot of confusion and discussion of late especially at places like Reddit.

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  12. Here's one of the problems with partisan politics. So Trumpcare negates and replaces Obamacare. Let's say the next president is a Democrat and a Democratic Congress replaces the Republicans so Demcare replaces Trumpcare. Likewise Obama opened up relations with Cuba and Trump is closing them again and so a future Democrat president makes nice to Cuba again. Result - confusion, lack of continuity and in the latter case lack of a consistent foreign policy. Maybe presidents and legacies should sometimes be respected at least somewhat.

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    1. IMO, the presidential negation policy is best exemplified by the birth control package in foreign aid. It was first negated by Reagan as an important
      nod to the religious right. Since then the package
      (birth control counseling, pills, abortions) has ping ponged from Dem to GOP presidents like clockwork. HIV
      would be far worse without the program, and luckily,
      the US Evanglical interference affects only a third of the funding; the other
      coming from other countries and private charities.
      (I'm sort of counting on foreign aid from Europe to
      help me cope with Trumpcare). Cuba- what's the deal?
      They are no threat, like N. Korea, Iran, ISIS...oh yeah, right- the US Cubans are a big voting bloc. How
      come we never built a wall there?

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    2. For me there's a yuuuuuge difference between bc and abortion. We covered the issue back in the day when people used to come around here more before FB became the thing. You can reprise the topic but we're never going to agree on that. It's in my bones and it's in your bones, the core beliefs. I don't bat it around much anymore these days.

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    3. Cuba. That was one of the Obama legacies so now it's the political thing to negate legacies as you say. It's almost childish (I'm gonna kick your sand castle). Weren't they're business deals in the offing? Maybe a future vacation destination for some Americans? Obamacare - wouldn't it have been better to tweak it and get rid of the bad parts? Now Paul Ryan and Trump are best buds whereas before he had a nervous hesitation like don't get too close. Makes ya hate politics more if that's possible.

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    4. RE: abortion disagreement. In the case of Africa, it
      is not frivolous, but medical. The fetus of HIV parents either dies young or spreads the endemic
      scourge further in a very high rate area. Cold and
      harsh in many POVs, agreed. Effectiv and merciful in
      may other POVs also. BC is also an effective method
      in the tribal areas where kids are starving to death
      before the age of three. Surely you agree that BC is
      less offensive theologically?

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    5. I can see Z-Man spending a couple weeks in Havana:
      picking up some choice cigars, sampling the rum and beachcombing where the Kenney Legion tried to come
      ashore.

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    6. I never had a theological issue with bc before. Pat Robertson doesn't seem to have one either. The need to have a theological problem?

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  13. Big article in yesterday's NY Times. The team of CERN eggheads are in a major depressive funk because after finding the Higg's Boson in 2012 nothing else much happened. In other words no proof yet of supersymmetry so now they have to build another Collider at least 3X as big. Will it go under the Hudson and stretch on to Yonkers? The angst of scientists.

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    1. A good argument could be made about the cost effectiveness of verifiying the Higgs Bosun. As I recall you yourself pondering if those billions had been spent on curing cancer (what the heck, throw in
      a few million for tinnitus too) :) One problem with
      theoretical physics is that it is overwhelmingly theoretical.

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    2. Yes overwhelmingly theoretical. Multiverse this multiverse that. I could have ate at McDonald's today but didn't. Ooops according to Geordie Rose I just did but in another universe. Who knows Geordie might be 100x more brilliant than Einstein and Hawking combined. He might get bored one night, nothing on tv and decide to blow up the planet. He might be like that Mumy kid from Twilight Zone. One timeline at a time, please.

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    3. & absolutely NOTHING is testable. Can't they get my receipt from the other McDonald's?

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  14. Georgia 6th Dist election: 259,000 voters and $60 Million
    spent by the candidates. That comes to $ 225.60 per vote.
    Thank you Citizens United (and Scalia). Not sure if I will
    bother voting anymore.

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  15. I just can't with Trumpcare. I'm literally burned out. I have no ambition anymore, I'm worn down. 24 million people are going to lose healthcare and the driving sentiment is that they don't deserve it anyway. Americans are the most selfish people I know. The evangelical right has the most amazing persecution complex I've ever seen. And Wayne LePierre is psychotic.

    Maybe in the multiverse we have socialized medicine.

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    Replies
    1. IMO, an arrogant and incompetent administration was
      elected and supported by voters whose sole concern was
      hatred of Hillary and Democrats. We shall see how that
      peculiar multiverse scenario works out.

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    2. Almost all other countries, and all European countries, have single payer which works exceptionally well
      for them. There is a growing trend among Americans
      that that is the way to go. It will, it has to; but
      the fight will be over the 'whiff of socialism' that
      terrifies people on the right. Meanwhile the rich get richer....

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    3. Multiverse is now the hip new idea because Reality has become too unbearable. Maybe we can d-wave the optimum solution.

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  16. Used to be it was the honorable thing to respect some presidential legacies. Nixon was famous for opening up trade and relations with China. What Trump is doing with Cuba it'd be like if Gerald Ford tried to unravel Nixon's China legacy. Meanwhile there are no tapes and Jay Sekulow who should know better is now the face of the Trump legal team. What does the Right like about his guy?

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    Replies
    1. Sukulow, Gingrich, DeVoss..et al. People worthy of
      detestation even before they were raised to TrumpPower. Is it me, or is it "I'm the Pres..neener
      neener ?

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  17. Just the fact that Trump has to have a legal team, my God.

    According to my Kindle I am 80% of the way through my eight volumes. Martin Luther has burned the Pope's bull against him.

    Whiff of socialism. That's why I thought Sanders was unelectable. I'm more of a socialist than he is but I didn't think they'd be able to get past the big red S in the campaign. But you're right. This election was more about not electing Hillary than it was about electing Trump. Unfortunately now we all have to suffer and the suffering is going to take on a deadly shade for the millions of people who are going to lose their healthcare. But I think even if 90% of the public supported single payer (and the number is growing) people like Ryan would never vote it through.

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    Replies
    1. I understand the newly released TrumpCare bill is mostly about tax breaks for the wealthy. Even at that,
      several GOP Senators are against it because it doesn't go far enough in meaness. Is ISIS laughing at
      us yet?

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    2. Would've been simpler to just get rid of the bad parts of Obamacare like the individual mandate. Seems we're the only country that still debates basic health care meanwhile Europeans are having their propofol-free colonoscopies.

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  18. Trump has the anti-immigrant, anti-latino, RW Evangelical
    vote. Now is he after the green vote ?

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  19. He's an idiot. I do hear that a judge has ordered the release of police records around the Dakota Pipeline brutality. That might be a good sign.

    ISIS is laughing at us. The whole world is laughing at us.

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  20. Was pondering the bilateral symmetry in mammals, specifically humans. While we have two of most things,
    arms, eyes, ears, limbs, kidneys, lungs, etc. parts of
    the organ system are single units-brain, liver, spleen,
    nose, pancreas. How and why this should be in light of
    either intelligent design or evolution is curious. We
    don't need two kidneys or lungs, and if we had two brains
    (although we have a split brain, at least by function) we
    would have two consciousnesses and likely a split personality...or perhaps one brain for maintaining the subconscious, breathing etc. the other for the senses?
    It appears that the oxygen handling is a dual function-
    2 lungs, as well as the filtration system-2 kidneys.
    So the anatomy of the mammal is a bit mysterious. Then,
    why should an octopus have eight limbs? Does Reddit have
    the answer?

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    Replies
    1. You really should be a Redditor. In other words have one big kidney, one big lung. Things I've been meaning to google: what in heck are "floating" ribs and what does the spleen do? What's scary about the human anatomy is it's as complicated as a car engine if not more so and one little thing goes wrong the whole system is screwed. The heart is in the center of the chest though people always pledge with their hands on the left side 'cept Obama it seems who pledges in the matter. Ever become too self-aware like you're wondering my heart is beating right now but how many beats can it take? In fact what even keeps it beating in the first place? Is it like the alternator in your car that charges the battery? Then there's takotsubo syndrome or literally having a broken heart which is when the left ventricle of the heart assumes the shape of the Japanese octopus pot. Can the brain survive without Christian Brothers?

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    2. OK so I did my homework. The spleen is mainly involved with the blood - filtration/purification and getting rid of damaged blood cells. The liver is quite big, bigger than I thought which is good if you're a Bacardi fan. The kidneys of course do their thing and you wouldn't want a stone in one of your ureters. Researching still......

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  21. The spleen is also the largest node of the lymph system,
    acting as part of the immune system by storing extra blood
    in the even of severe bleeding, and producing WBD, antibodies and immunoglobin. A few people have two spleens.
    Oddly, it can be removed with not much effect other than a
    somewhat weakened immune response. It gives rise to the word spenitic meaning cantankerous. Who knows why.

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    1. Being an obese or overweight nation visceral fat or gut fat has always been a big problem as it puts pressure on vital internal organs. Visceral fat is also the hardest fat to shed. Hard to say which diet is the best.

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    2. Stubborn belly fat, according to Marie Osmond. When I was a kid there were fat people. Now days they are obese. Blame Reddit?

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    3. It's almost like the nation's fat is pushing the organs out of the way (unified fat theory). They say today's 16-year olds get about as much exercise as a typical 60-year old. The devices:)

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    4. How does one become obese? I stepped out of the shower one evening, looked in the bathroom mirror and said THIS AND NO MORE.

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    5. Obesity is a cultural and medical issue. My wife says I weigh too much, the doctor doesn't mention it. So I did one of those BMI index calculator things: 29.8 Kg/m*3, which it explained put me
      at 'overweight' on the general chart. But adjusted
      for advanced age it stated "Your weight is at a marginally elevated level; in our view, it should still be fine for your health. By classification of the WHO, you are "overweight". I take that as why the doctor was not concerned. Acceptable BMI goes up with age: so we note that you can either diet
      or get older. Culture insists we do the former,
      medicine permits the latter. Dunno, they sometimes
      overdo these analyses. Like, you won't be seeing me
      on 'My 600 lb life' on the telly.

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    6. There is a pov developing which I agree with that we should place less emphasis on dieting and just accept that being a little overweight is normal. Based on my older metabolism I'd have to eat a whole lot less and exercise a hell of a lot more just to lose 10 pounds. Those days are over. We don't live forever. So you look good in a casket.

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    7. You don't see very many obese marathon runners, though. Knew of a local kid, played middle linebacker at the U. He was too short for the pros,
      but very good. The team got him up to a fast 225 lbs. He is a finance guy now, back to a reasonable
      175. Football teams and Burger King are two entities which admire too much weight.

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    8. IMO if you make a good faith long-term effort to lose weight and you just can't they need to accept that. I've had days when you have a salad for lunch and walk 8 miles and you can't even melt a pound.

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  22. Seems to me this health care thing won't pass. At least 5 GOP Senators are not down with it including that guy from Nebraska. Every time we elect a president we have to debate health care? When did this happen?

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    Replies
    1. Just about everybody is upset with whatever the Plan is. Several GOP senators are against it because it isn't mean and barbaric enough. Where we headed here?

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    2. It's like health care has to dominate the domestic agenda and the Middle East always dominates our foreign policy. Just think if we were freed up to focus on other things.

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    3. IMO, though, focusing on a solar powered 1989 miles long impenetrable wall isn't that compelling. Even with a TrumpTower every 10 miles. I have a split cedar fence that always needs maintenance, ya know?
      I read someplace that Christie's positive rating is
      down to 16%. Is that because the fast food industry
      is 16% of the public?

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    4. I find the LHC more compelling although a case could be made we need neither.

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  23. I never understood the warning on the bottle of St. John's Wort: "avoid excessive exposure to sunlight." Does it cause vampirism?

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    Replies
    1. I'm not that familiar with St. John's Wort (at first glance it sounds like a viral bump on St. John's nose). But with any unfamiliar OTC prep, it is a good
      idea to do a brief review of the pharmacology: in this
      case, the stuff modulates dopamine and it's receptors.
      Side effects are few, but the stuff varies greatly in
      its content, being an unregulated preparation. Sun?
      We note- "the most common side effects of St. John’s wort appear to be headache, dry mouth, nausea, gastrointestinal upset and sleepiness. A rare side effect reported for St. John’s wort is photosensitivity. ..and conclude that some small number of users might get an itchy rash when they go
      to the beach. My go to OTC is Pepto-Bismol, Tylenol
      and on that rare full of it occasion, Milk of Magnesia. For most general ailments, Christian Brothers is the natural herb of choice. Just saying.

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    2. No I get it. Every potential rare side effect needs to be listed like penis shrinkage.

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    3. The pharma commercials continue to amaze..stuff like
      "If you are allergic to alphpropyldihydroxyamide,
      ask your Dr. if you should take WonderAll. Other side effects include instant insanity, burst spleen,
      collapsed lungs, brain swelling and in some instances a horrible death. Be sure to try WonderAll today." Next, millions of TV viewers are
      hounding their Dr. for WonderAll. Beats me.

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    4. You need a pill for the side effects of the first pill then another pill for the side effects of the second pill and so on...

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    5. Sounds like a successful marketing strategy. Back when I was a kid, we were medically innocent. Cough
      syrup in the Winter and Castor Oil in the Spring.
      Saw a new bit this morning on a Duke U study: fetal
      blood stem cells to treat autistic youngsters. Looked promising. How a dermal drip of the stuff
      into the blood stream finds it's way into the brain
      cells baffles me. Oh, wait..thats how Christian Brothers works. OK, makes sense.

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  24. Assuming chefs know a lot about food, Upper Michigan is the home of the famous pasty . These things originated with Cornish miners who emigrated to that
    scenic area to work in the many copper and iron mines. Other
    than way too much snow in Winter, the pasty is the other
    thing that draws tourists from the Midwest (and maybe Cornwall). They are one food that always contains rutabaga.
    Dunno, they look like sort of a common type preparation.
    Do they remind you of other types of 'baked in a pie' type things? Maybe Stromboli without the rutabaga?

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    Replies
    1. Older than the cronut. Not really into ruta. An Italian would at least stuff it with mozzarella, ricotta and spinach and call it something else. Yes a quick meal for a miner in the early stages of black lung disease.

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    2. Originally tin was mined in Cornwall starting in 2000BC, and a few centuries later, copper. In the time of Jesus we note'
      "Ding Dong mine, reputedly one of the oldest in Cornwall, in the parish of Gulval is said in local legend to have been visited by Joseph of Arimathea, a tin trader, and that he brought a young Jesus to address the miners, although there is no evidence to support this". So we can debunk that. Black lung
      comes from coal dust and the Cornish avoid it like the rest of us..except the Trump mining conglomerate.

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  25. Not to change the subject but the hacktivist group Anonymous claims NASA is on the verge of announcing alien life. So is an alien gonna be speaking at the next NASA press conference? Common complaint in the Martian workplace: "I only have 4 hands."

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    Replies
    1. They put together a bunch of old clips and some old conjectures.
      My favorite comment was 'we will convert them to Christianity and all will be well. Of course there are aliens..look at congress!

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