I know, I know... ten gallons of fail, and I choose to point out this tiny little crumb; but I must say that I was moved by the story of poor Jamie -- Jamie Thomas-Rasset, that is. I know why she stole them Internets; she was put up to it by her dastardly cousin, Jammie!
To complete the moneygrubbing portrait of US healthcare's failings, be sure to read Dr. Atul Gawande's New Yorker expose' comparing health care costs in Rochester, MN, home of the Mayo Clinic, to dirt-poor Hidalgo County, TX. Predictable, right? Scores of top Mayo experts, incredible high-tech facilities, highly systematized; vs. a cobbled-together network of individual practitioners, and patients who can barely afford to pay. Except the reality is backwards... costs incredibly less to be treated in a well-run, expert system, mostly because in the unorganized environment, each and every practitioner has opened a freestanding clinic or specialty in a strip mall, and each is scamming federal reimbursement right up to the legal limit... and beyond. Kickbacks, payoffs, gaming the system; given the right unregulated environment, greedy providers will go for the gold every time.
Agreed. Freedom, and all that... yes. You are all free to click whatever buttons you find here. But if there were no "hide" button, I would use my freedom-loving eyeballs to skip over the nasty bits, and get to the good stuff. Maybe enjoy a morsel of trollery from time to time if that strikes my fancy.
I appreciate your efforts on my behalf. But remember... if you voted to hide, it's because you already read it; and now you've made that harder for me to do, which makes no sense. "Don't worry your pretty little head," you say. But you've made your decision, let me make mine... less of this juvenile hiding nonsense.
A similar situation has been brewing in Africa. According to this story at the "AllAfrica" site, American seed interests, with help from the World Bank and others, are attempting to establish a foothold for corporate seed interests to displace locally-grown seed. African agronomists insist that local seed is genetically best adapted to African growing conditions and environments; not surprisingly, Big Seed thinks that African prosperity depends on an explosion of agribusiness interests. "Agribusiness" means massive first-world plantations, of course; so the prosperity train likely won't pass by the African farmer's front door, no matter what is claimed. And at the very least, once seeds transition from locally-grown to corporate-grown (and potentially GMO), prices will be out of reach for small African farmers. Far from an economic stimulus, this would appear to leave African subsistence farmers far worse off, and would reduce biodiversity, offering the same homogenized range of crops as is gradually being pushed across the world by corporate seed interests.
"... many libraries, for example, stopped taking federal funding to avoid the issue altogether."
Actually, the American Library Association credo is strongly anti-censorship, and member professionals guard Internet freedom like pit bulls. Even if it means that they have to occasionally clean up certain... fluids... left by their male patrons at the public access computers.
Guess I was looking from the other end... a suspect who, although not Mirandized, knows enough to invoke those rights nonetheless (and clams up). I understand Miranda's purpose... formal notice... but wondered, as that whole no-Miranda-for-you media cycle unfolded, whether the officials involved really thought that omitting the notification would actually change his right to remain silent. Or that it would force him to run his mouth, when simple common sense says otherwise.
I know it's just a minor point on the Senator's Idiocy Hit Parade, but that Miranda thing... seriously. The question of whether or not to "read him his rights" -- what, is Miranda a secret? Is it written in Esperanto, and needs to be translated so that you know you have rights? What if he's already heard it? Considering its repetition from the days of Jack Webb and Dragnet, all the way through all the dozens of Law and Order franchises... how can anyone, even an immigrant, not know what the words and concepts are?
And better yet, Miranda isn't about having rights... it's about getting reminded of them. The rights are already in place.