Why desperate Americans are driving to Canada in caravans for insulin | CBC News

From the article:

Nystrom, who has Type 1 diabetes, requires insulin to stay alive. She is on a type of fast-acting insulin called NovoLog, which costs about $300 US a vial. The Canadian equivalent, NovoRapid, is about $30 per vial. She was shocked to learn about the price difference.

Source: Why desperate Americans are driving to Canada in caravans for insulin | CBC News

How long a vial lasts is dependent on your needs. Sometimes a vial of insulin only lasts a week.

The very notion that diabetics have to caravan to Canada to buy insulin to literally stay fucking alive is so wrong.

Here’s another instance from the article:

Lija Greenseid, who organized the Caravan to Canada, lives in St. Paul, Minn. Her 13-year-old daughter has Type 1 diabetes and she and her husband buy insurance through the Affordable Care Act.

Last year, she said they spent $13,000 US just to obtain health insurance — and then $14,000 US out of pocket before her daughter’s insulin was covered.

“It’s a huge amount of money for us. Because of that, we didn’t put any money into our kids’ college savings accounts or put anything into retirement for the year. We really just had to pay our health-care bills,” Greenseid said.

“So now you can see why we do crazy things like go across the border and buy insulin.”

This should not be happening. People should not being going through extraordinary measures just to keep their kids alive. It should not bankrupt people to life.

I used to be a nurse. In my first career I have seen what happens to people that ration their insulin. Nothing good.

This is just wrong.

Decade in the Red: Trump Tax Figures Show Over $1 Billion in Business Losses – The New York Times

As a financial auditor, you can read this news one of two ways.

  1. Donald Trump is a terrible business man that loses money hand over fist, to the tune of 1 billion fucking dollars.
  2. Donald Trump is a liar, who cited loses to the tune of 1 billion fucking dollars to play the IRS and take advantage of loopholes in an egregious way.

Either way, this isn’t good. There is no way to spin this as a good things and it probably why his administration is fighting to keep his tax returns from coming out.

If I was a betting man, I would point to the second possibility because of the man’s history of lying, and bragging that he didn’t have to pay taxes. I suspect there are losses, but I also suspect there were lies.

This article really takes you through it in a non-accounting way, so it is interesting to read.

 

What Happened to All the Jobs Trump Promised? | ProPublica

President Donald Trump likes to claim credit for the American job boom. He’s not the only president to celebrate job creation under his watch, but Trump is unusual among his peers for frequently attributing specific jobs at specific companies to his own actions.

The U.S. economy has been producing jobs at a healthy clip for years, creating 188,542 jobs a month on average in the first 24 months of Trump’s presidency, compared with 202,417 jobs a month in the last 24 months of the Obama administration.

But how much credit does Trump deserve? We tracked the president’s tweets and speeches about job creation to try to figure out how well his claims stacked up. The answer is: Not well.

Source: What Happened to All the Jobs Trump Promised? | ProPublica

This is a claim by claim overview of every job Trump promised to create. IT’s not good. It’s got great graphics, and backs everything up.

Trump would have been charged with obstruction were he not president, hundreds of former federal prosecutors assert

From the article:

More than 450 former federal prosecutors who worked in Republican and Democratic administrations have signed on to a statement asserting special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s findings would have produced obstruction charges against President Trump — if not for the office he holds.

Source: Trump would have been charged with obstruction were he not president, hundreds of former federal prosecutors assert – The Washington Post

I just don’t believe the guy is innocent. He’s too incompetent to know what’s legally allowable. He is also grossly unethical, and historically his businesses were not above board in any way.

It’s nice to see both Republicans and Democrats come together on this.

Mueller Was Upset With Barr’s Misrepresentation of Report | The Mary Sue

From the article:

Mueller’s letter to the Justice Department said that Barr’s brief summary “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this office’s work and conclusions.” Because of that, he wrote, “There is now public confusion about critical aspects of the results of our investigation. This threatens to undermine a central purpose for which the Department appointed the Special Counsel: to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations.”

Mueller urged the department to release his original introductions and executive summaries of his report and to do so immediately. Doing so, he wrote, would “alleviate the misunderstandings that have arisen.” That wording is cordial and professional but the meaning is clear: Barr effed up (on purpose) and Mueller is pissed.

Source: Mueller Was Upset With Barr’s Misrepresentation of Report | The Mary Sue

This really comes as no surprise. That Barr would fuck with the report to fit his agenda. This has been all this administration has done since Trump got into office, and to add insult to injury it’s been done so poorly we can all see it.


As an aside, my wife had her facial feminization surgery, and it was a resounding success. Thank you for the support and well wishing, and putting up with some stale news for a week or so.

20 Years After Columbine, Fed’s Background Checks Haven’t Stopped Mass Shootings : NPR

From the article:

And in the two decades since, the federal government says it has conducted more than hundreds of millions of background checks. With critical shortcomings in the system, though, mass shootings continue happening in the U.S.

“The weakness of the NICS system is talked about mostly in the wake of a tragic shooting, which happens more often than not,” says Stephen Morris, a former FBI assistant director for the Criminal Justice Information Services Division, which oversees NICS.

Source: 20 Years After Columbine, Fed’s Background Checks Haven’t Stopped Mass Shootings : NPR

This seems about right. The system that does these checks has been denied funding, and research to be more effective.


How the IRS Gave Up Fighting Political Dark Money Groups — ProPublica

From the article:

Six years after it was excoriated for allegedly targeting conservative organizations, the agency has largely given up on regulating an entire category of nonprofits. The result: More dark money gushes into the political system.

Source: How the IRS Gave Up Fighting Political Dark Money Groups — ProPublica

The IRS has been eviscerated by the politics at hand overall, and this is just another example.

The article says that the division that oversees these fucked up nonprofits had its staffing cut in have in 2018. These attacks hit individual IRS employees, so they stopped taking risks, or doing the job.

I audit some 501(c)’s for my job, to ensure they are using federal money right. My audits are very specific, and as long as they hit the criteria, I can’t do anything but say they hit the criteria. Even if they are fucking it up.

Every couple of years they change the criteria federally so that these grantees don’t always know what we are looking at.

That said, it’s easy to fuck off with a lot of money if you are a 501(c). I’ve known laymen that seem to think this is a ward against financial misuse, but it’s not.

That is why we need the IRS. We need them to do the job they are tasked to do without interference designed to make it impossible for them.


Pete Buttigieg faces down anti-gay chants in Iowa – CNNPolitics

From the article:

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg brushed off anti-gay chants from a small number of out-of-state hecklers who interrupted his two Iowa events on Tuesday.

Source: Pete Buttigieg faces down anti-gay chants in Iowa – CNNPolitics

This article really plays this down, but I have an issue with the attacks on his sexuality. His politics are what is important, not who he falls in love with. Homophobia is a big part of politics right now, though.


My wife gets to leave the hospital today. Sure we are stuck in a hotel in a different state as she recovers enough to fly home, but she’s back with me!

Secret Report Reveals Saudi Incompetence and Widespread Use of U.S. Weapons in Yemen

From the article:

SINCE THE BRUTAL murder of Saudi dissident and Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi last October, Congress has increasingly pressured the Trump administration to stop backing the Saudi Arabia-led coalition fighting in Yemen and halt U.S. arms sales to Riyadh. In response, President Donald Trump has repeatedly said that if the U.S. does not sell weapons to the Saudis, they will turn to U.S. adversaries to supply their arsenals.

“I don’t like the concept of stopping an investment of $110 billion into the United States,” Trump told reporters in October, referring to a collection of intent letters signed with the Saudis in the early months of his presidency. “You know what they are going to do? They’re going to take that money and spend it in Russia or China or someplace else.”

But a highly classified document produced by the French Directorate of Military Intelligence shows that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are overwhelmingly dependent on Western-produced weapon systems to wage their devastating war in Yemen. Many of the systems listed are only compatible with munitions, spare parts, and communications systems produced in NATO countries, meaning that the Saudis and UAE would have to replace large portions of their arsenals to continue with Russian or Chinese weapons.

Source: Secret Report Reveals Saudi Incompetence and Widespread Use of U.S. Weapons in Yemen

I absolutely hate that we supply weapons to these countries.


Wish us luck!