That Wonderful Word Reform

November 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

Remember working with clay? You took a big lump of the stuff and squeezed it and shaped it and molded it. If you were good, and I wasn’t, you ended up with something that looked like a pot, or maybe the head of a person you knew, or a log cabin. I ended up with something that looked a lot like what it started as, a lump. It remained un-formed. I couldn’t re-form it.

However, I was an untalented kid. I wasn’t some respected candidate for the United States legislature who promised to take the lump that was Healthcare in the United States and re-form it.

If I was, I would be expected to take the lump and form it into something that would guarantee that every American, regardless of whether he was sick or well, rich or poor, young or old, working or out of work, living in the north, south, east or west, needing healthcare at home or away from home, could get the best health care result that was available.

No I’m not naïve. I am well aware of the political pulls that motivate legislators and I know that a bill that doesn’t pass Congress is no bill, but I also know that if I promised to do something when I was elected and I didn’t do it, I would grab a cab to Union Station or Reagan International, get a ticket and go home and stay there.

Does it hurt more to be in pain or to watch someone you love suffer pain? I think watching is the greatest pain. The frustration and rage of being victim of a system that offers no help when that help could be available is incomparable.

So here is my message. There are priorities. Maybe the tax laws are unfair and they should be re-formed. Maybe the government of Afghanistan is corrupt and we should use our money and our efforts to re-form it. Maybe our financial structure needs more regulation and we should take the regulators and the regulations themselves and re-form them.

But of all the things that have to be re-formed, the one that affects the most people in the direst way is the health care delivery system.

Unless they go home and never come back, no legislator should go home from Washington for vacation until they take care of this. No one should carve a turkey or open a Christmas present if their job was to re-form the lump that was the American health care system so that it serves us all the way it should.

Come on guys, I know Christmas is still a bit away, but this is one piece of clay you should shape and bake and wrap so we can put it under our tree.  That’s what you promised us, isn’t it?


I Feel Good

September 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

To quote the late Godfather of Soul, James Brown.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all entitled Americans could make the same case?

It would appear that the probability of such an opportunity is getting closer to reality.  Of course., there are still barriers to circumvent and hurdles to jump before the deal is signed, however, a universal health care plan grows imminent with each passing day.  Politics being what it is, there will never be complete agreement on all sides. I’m reminded of the time-imbued adage, “You have to give something in order to get something in return”.  Once a lot of the red tape is dispensed with, the objective to have better care for our citizenry will be but steps away.  

While pondering the pros and cons of this mammoth undertaking, it occurred to me how much one’s health is commensurate to so many obvious and some not so obvious facets of everyday life. Surely a person in good health is more apt to engage in sports or the arts, to work longer hours more effectively, to be less likely to contract a disease … to simply live longer.    Then there are the less obvious rewards.  

When you’re “feeling your oats”, reflect on how many other things about yourself you feel good about.  The insurmountable doesn’t seem so insurmountable; the impossible starts to seem possible.  That sense of equilibrium and well -being are some of the key elements to spur on your ability to be more compassionate, more concerned and more benevolent.  When your overall self … mind, spirit and body … is improved or already at peak performance, you can be assured that Brown’s literal translation of “I feel good” can be an ongoing testimony to your success in everyday living


Lion Of The Senate

August 26, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

I’m very sad about Senator Kennedy’s passing. I’m sad that he passed away from brain cancer, a horrible painful death, and I’m sad to see a man who devoted forty seven years of his life to public service and still had the passion to fight, die.  But mostly I feel sad to see a man who seemed to have found a level of happiness and love for others die.

Ted Kennedy made his mistakes and lived through a life of many ordeals; the loss of all his brothers, Chappaquiddick, the partying, drinking and the trial of William Kennedy Smith, but it seemed that at some point the Senator got back to his life’s path. 

At age 59 Ted Kennedy married Vicky, a lawyer and a single mother who gave him the structure he so desperately needed.

“I had not ever really intended to get married again,” the Senator once told the New York Times. “The people who had been closest to me over the course of my life had disappeared, with that enormous amount of emotion and feeling and love, I thought I probably wouldn’t want to go through that kind of experience again.”

Ted Kennedy was considered one of the most effective legislators of the past few decades.  Ted Kennedy who became known as the “Lion of the Senate” played major roles in the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act and the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act.  He was an outspoken liberal who knew how to work with Republicans to get important legislation approved.

With his passing it is also the end of a generation of Kennedys that has so impacted this country. Gone are John, Robert and Ted.

Ted Kennedy will not be here to help support Obama’s health care reform, a reform he called his life’s dream. 

Ted Kennedy also had a personal meaning to me.  Whenever my husband Chris wasn’t sure about a political stance he would look up Ted Kennedy’s view and that was good enough for him.

Today on what would have been my third wedding anniversary neither Chris nor Ted Kennedy remains.


Take Action

August 18, 2009 by  
Filed under Inspiring People

The widow of a man who has died of kidney cancer is taking matters in her own hand.  As she says: “Make your voice heard.  Take action”. Below is an interview and a look at her Medical Advocacy Mural Project.