There’s almost no issue that inflames people more than the state of welfare and entitlements in this country, and today a new wrinkle has been revealed in the long-standing debate. A report issued by the U.S. Census indicates that 110 million Americans are now receiving government “means-tested” assistance of some kind. This means that more than one-third of this country is receiving federal housing subsidies, SSI, food stamps, WIC, Medicaid, temporary assistance, and/or welfare benefits. Now, I’m sure that some of the recipients of these benefits are good, hard-working, people who need a helping hand, but that doesn’t mean the system isn’t broken. Both sides of the debate, liberal and conservative alike, have extreme ideas when it comes to reeling in or expanding welfare, but I believe that a common sense middle ground can be found. Remember, politicians like to keep us divided so that we won’t suddenly realize we are all being duped. Entitlement reform is one of the areas that suffers regularly from this practice of distraction.
The increasing difficulty with which I must obtain my pain medicine is a frequent topic of discussion both here and over at Creaky Joints. Legitimate users like myself are being punished because of the increasing numbers of drug addicts who are replacing heroin with prescription narcotics. As bad as that is, though, the fault does not lie mainly with the end-user. It actually sits squarely on the shoulders of the pay-to-play doctors who take cash for controlled substance scripts. These dubious docs require little to no proof of patient need beyond a simple “doc, I’m in pain,” and the consequences are grave and far-reaching.
As you have probably read, Burger King recently announced their planned merger with Tim Horton’s, a Canadian fast food company. After the statement was made, though, there arose a huge social media outcry, going so far as starting an online petition and espousing a country-wide Burger King boycott. Unfortunately, as we have seen many times before at Politically Disabled, the fervor is largely based on dubious claims and hyperbole. As our mission dictates, I am going to break down the deal, and explain why this isn’t anywhere near as much of an issue as people are making it, and why you should definitely not boycott Burger King.
Unless you live on Mars, in a cave, with your hands over your ears, you’ve heard about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. This latest Internet craze has everyone from “that guy on Twitter you followed because he had a cool picture” to Justin Timberlake posting shaky, handheld cell phone videos of themselves being doused with ice water, and then nominating people they hate, err, love, to do the same. Now, while most Internet memes are invariably pointless and frequently dangerous, this one actually happens to have a point, and even a legitimate cause behind it. A rare thing indeed.
An interesting thing happened yesterday. As I was watching the “Every Simpsons Ever” marathon on FXX, like almost everyone from age 25-45 has been doing for the last few days, the episode where Homer joins the Naval Reserve aired. In a nutshell Homer ends up captain of a submarine, and the rest of the world thinks he has gone rogue. Because of this, the United Nations gets involved, and the Russian delegate speaks up. What happens after that is humorous, yes, but it is also eerily familiar and hits way too close to home. Check out the video below before we continue.
“One problem I’ve had today is keeping my Wongs straight.”
Now, you might think this was a joke made at the expense of Asians by some off-color comedian or talk show host. In actuality, though, this was uttered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid at an event Thursday sponsored by the Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce. Really, though, this comment was just gilding the Lilly, as Reid started his speech by saying, “I don’t think you’re smarter than anybody else, but you’ve convinced a lot of us you are.” Well, Harry, they are certainly smarter than you….
Meat Recall For Cancerous Meat Expands To Co-Owner Of Slaughterhouse
This one is a doozy. It seems that the co-owner of the Rancho Feeding Corporation slaughterhouse, which was already involved in a nine-million pound meat recall, is now thought to be primarily responsible for purchasing cattle and okaying the “adulterated, misbranded, and un-inspected” meat for sale. Robert Singleton and Jesse Amaral are now both charged with conspiring to cover up the fact that their meat was tainted.
*The Huffington Post, the usual home for Politically Disabled, decided not to post this particular installment. I suppose they don’t agree with the term “illegal alien.” Just a guess, though.
(Sorry about the title, but a clever pun wasn’t going to cut it this time.) Those of you who follow my “Political Thoughts” tweets might have seen an article I posted last week with an “in case you missed it” preface. It was an article about our ICE’s release of 600 illegal aliens because of overcrowding and budget issues. It was a bit shocking, so I dug a little deeper. It seems that ICE has an alarming habit of opening the prison gates right into your back yard.
We had to participate in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, how could we not? Considering I suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis, another chronic disease, it seemed only right that we donate and participate! Of course, we couldn’t leave well enough alone, so we did our own version of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and gave it a bit of a twist. Let’s just say that this video truly represents what having a chronic illness is like! Check it out!
Those of you who read my column regularly know that I’m a big proponent of pain medicine, and I regularly discuss how it is getting more and more difficult to obtain these medications. This is due to the demonization of opioids in the media, as well as prescription drugs being the target du jour for America’s ridiculous “War on Drugs.” Those of us who are in chronic pain have a growing crisis on our hands, and vary rarely do we receive any help from the major news outlets. Fortunately, though, Consumer Reports has just published an article about pain medication, and even though I haven’t read it yet, I’m sure that it responsibly weighs the pros and cons of opioids and helps to dispel some of the myths and half-truths that are whipping the public up into a frenzy of anti-opioid hate.