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Showing posts from July, 2007

NOT "Socialized Medicine"; Public Health INSURANCE

I notice there are only two arguments from opponents to universal health care in the U.S.

1. There are long waiting lines for medical service in countries that have it.

2. We can't afford it.

Both are mostly wrong. "Long wait" is a relative thing. How long do all those people in the U.S. have to wait if they have no coverage? They might wait until they are deathly ill and have to go to the emergency room. Talk about expensive care, and we all have to pay for it.

"Afford it?" We who spend more money on health care than any other people on earth? And what do we get for all that money? 37th rank in the world in public health, that's what.

I firmly disagree with the well-worn politicians' statement: “There is no single prescription to solving our nation’s serious uninsured problem”. There is a prescription that’s working quite well in many first world countries, which I am sure all those Senators, Congressmen and Administration types know all about.

Let me be c…

Another Shot at Ethanol

Food and Fuel Should Not be in Competition

OK, you know where I stand. Corn is not a very good feedstock for making ethanol. There is still a net negative energy exchange in manufacturing ethanol from Corn. Sugar cane and sugar beets are a lot better and they have a net positive energy balance. Look it up. And, weirdly, the whole grow-convert-use corn ethanol cycle is as bad for the environment as gasoline use.

But the worst thing in the corn/ethanol equation is that corn is an important food.
It's in hundreds of things we eat. Whole food chains are dependent on corn. The meat industry, including chickens, requires a lot of corn. Not only beef cattle, but dairy cows need corn.

Corn being diverted to our new passion for ethanol (said passion involving a federal subsidy) is already raising food costs all over. Check out this rant.

And it's worse than just higher prices in our supermarkets. It will likely mean starvation for those on the low end of the money pole.

By our corn-centric a…