Endless comedy

This is a terrible trait to have, especially in Los Angeles, but I find people who take themselves seriously & think of themselves as very important as inconceivably funny.

Especially if they are earnest about it. I would never survive Washington, D.C. 

If I’m in a CVS & I saw you get out of a Bentley & you are wearing Jimmy Choos & you have those nails that make it impossible to lead a pragmatic life style & you are arguing with someone who makes $11 an hour about a coupon, you are hilarious.

If you cut in front of a large Latino family trying to get a table for 10 to celebrate their kids’ graduation at a family restaurant in Woodland Hills because you were a guest star on 6 episodes of “Rockford Files,” I cannot stop laughing at you.

If you want to move your cancer surgeries around because you want to play golf on a particular day but you can’t be bothered to dictate properly so you can get your claims paid, you might as well cart me to the morgue, because I’m dead.

And then there’s the fame people. I wait until the last possible second to tell anybody anything about me, because listening to people talk at you reveals who they are. Personal information is a weapon. If you think you are a huge big deal because you once did publicity for three Nickelodeon stars, & that somehow I should be impressed by that, I see no reason to pop your delightful bubble of delusion. You are amusing forever.

Tell me you raised 3 kids, rescue cats, are the sacristan at your church, do homeless outreach, know sign language, or can bake gluten free pies? Then I’m impressed.

But, no, seriously, I want to hear more about the time you were on an elevator with Selena Gomez & she said she liked your shoes. Do go on.



Wherein I Set Down the Kool-Aid and Take Up A Cup of Tea

Last week at theblacksphere.net I confessed to having been a sick and medicated idiot. This week, my allegiance to the Dark Side is complete. You can think of Kevin Jackson as the Emperor from Star Wars. “Give in to your hate!” I am hatin’ right now, and it’s not because my stupid girlfriend died, Darth Whiner. It’s because I paid my taxes.

I’m writing this on June 12. Yes, I filed for an extension, because during my move to Los Angeles from Reno, my 2008 return got irrevocably sucked into a wormhole or something. I hear there are a couple of those on the 5.

Obama told Tea Partiers on Tax Day that they ought to be grateful that he’s lowered taxes. Well, I just paid three times as much tax as I did during each year of the entire Bush administration. So how does that work, Mr. Precedent? Why am I calling him that?

Because it dawned on me I hadn’t paid more than $100 in taxes since Clinton was president! The first black president also screwed me, though not in the way he normally screws tubby white girls.

MIND. OFFICIALLY. BLOWN. I realize I may be a little slower than the rest of you.

Obama let Bush’s tax cuts expire, so while he didn’t exactly raise taxes, he didn’t exactly do anything to keep me from being screwed either. You may think, “Well, white girl, you probably made more money than me last year.”

I doubt it. I am firmly entrenched in lower middle class status, just like most of you. I did not receive a raise last year because my company froze all raises, and I did not earn extra income in any other way. I currently write for free, y’all (but won’t complain if Mr. Jackson wants to kick a little sugar my way for my stuff on theblacksphere.net). I haven’t gone to school for a while, so my tuition credit hasn’t been a factor in years.

I made just as little money as the rest of you good folks, and thanks to our glorious lefty Congress, I paid three times as much in taxes than I ever did during the entire war in the Middle East, and a couple of years before that. Holy crap, that crazy old white dude was right. Obama lied!

When Clinton was president, I made $5.00 an hour as a supervisor at a record store, and I was paying over $200 at tax time. In installments. Because Democrats clearly care about the lower class, I guess?

What is the point of allowing tax breaks to expire on the lower middle class? Well, it certainly helps to drop us down to the level of “poor”. Poor folks of all colours are then eligible for more programs, which guilts the rich white Left into backing more Leftist candidates, whose solemn single wish is to take care of all of us…by raising taxes and creating more programs.

Well, I don’t want any damn programs. I want my damn money!

Don’t you? When you last went to the bank to deposit your check, did you say, “Gee, I sure wish they’d taken out more taxes to pay for nebulous programs I may or may not ever use!” Or did you say “Gee, I’d sure like more damn money to spend as I damn well please”?

Some of you may be pausing over your grande frappuccinos or your bottles of pinot to say “Well, you see my dear, programs help those less fortunate than us, and it’s good for the government to wisely distribute funds and services where they are needed.” Do you hear yourself? When the government decides whom to distribute funds and services to, they have the power. They take the power away from you to decide how to take care of yourself and the folks you care about. You could spend your extra forty dollars a week in tax savings on dinner with your grandma, or beer, or a savings account, or home renovations, or crack, or a carton of smokes, or the tithing plate, or whatever the hell you want. Yes, you could be greedy and hoard it all for yourself, but that’s your choice.

When we let the government decide how to be nice for us, it steals not only the power away from us, but also the responsibility. It’s easier to let the government be nice to your fellow man than actually go out and donate to charity, put in time as a volunteer, or help out family. Yes, Mr. Lefty VonZinfandel, it’s all well and good to sit at dinner with your friends and tut tut over Republican greed, but you make enough money where you don’t seem to notice where your taxes go. You pay the government to be nice for you without the bother of having to meet actual folks and care for them. And you make enough money where it’s no skin off your back.

To me and the Mr. Six Packs of the world, we are so close to the wrong side of town that we see where it goes, and we feel it being taken from us. It goes to some people who do use welfare to pull themselves up by the bootstraps and get ahead in life. It also goes to people who know that they will lose what little income they have if they even make the slightest effort to help themselves. It takes power from them. It removes choice.

What was I going to do with the extra $156 I would not have had to pay under Bush? I was going to start paying my mother back for helping me to move down here. Now the government gets it, and they probably won’t even have it left to give her in five years when she’s old enough for Medicare. I would rather have given it to her now, thanks.

OMG, I hate the government!

I guess that puts me firmly on the damn Right now, doesn’t it? I’m proud to be here! When’s the next Tea Party? I’ll bring my finest damn Target china.

With love, The Angriest Girl in America Right Now.


Common Sense Ain’t

What do 19 year olds, little teapots, & doctors have in common? The ability to make me go *headdesk* ALL DAY.

Sorry, that was redundant. Many 19 year olds and doctors ARE little teapots. “When I get all steamed up, hear me shout!”

New Rule: You don’t get to argue with me about ANYthing unless you A. think and B. know what the fuck you’re talking about. Also, if you suspect for even 3 seconds that I do not know what I am talking about, you need to call me on it. Deal?

By “call me on it”, I do not mean “You’re mean!” and “I like you better when you’re cute & girly!” I mean you have to say something constructive, like, “My dear, I believe you are mistaken, because…” You don’t even have to put in the “my dear”, it’s just what I tend to get from some of you of whom I’m more fond.

Recent knock down drag out with an MD boiled down to: “My claims must not be getting paid because of something you’ve done wrong,” and then “I have to explain why a patient is having a repeat procedure done every time they’re having it done?! But I mentioned why the first time they came in!”

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!! *headdesk* *headdesk* *headdesk*

Thanks to Medicare, every time you visit a doctor, you’ve bought a product that gets its own ICN (individual claim number). That ICN represents one encounter note out of your medical record. To Medicare, & hence to all private insurance, that’s the product it’s buying on your behalf. So yeah, you might be coming in for treatment of the same thing over & over, but Medicare doesn’t care about that. They want to know what they’re buying today. So yes, doctor, you have to take an extra seven seconds to say, “Patient returns for continued treatment of her whateverosis.” Which, DUH, is good record keeping.

The next person who comes to an argument with a machete & sweeps it across the necks of all participating with a giant emotional, hand wringing accusation of “The world is unfair!” gets shot down. Never bring a machete to a gun fight, babes.

I love yall, but some of you really want the the world to be fair. I have news for you. It ain’t. It will never be, so you have to make the most with what you’ve got. Also, your version of fair & right is not everybody’s, so forcing it upon other people is NOT cool.

People get very emotional & hand wringy about health care. I do, in a more “clubbing baby seals over the head” way. I’m sick of it. I’ve been doing this for 19 years and I’m over it. No matter what the government does, they make it worse as is evidenced by how poorly they are handling “new” (10 year old) procedures we are now doing for patients. Baby seals are cute & cuddlesome, but not if you flood the waters with them so that they are choking out the ecosystem. The health care plan I was excited about, the change I tried to believe in, is a 2000 page partisan document of redundancy document that makes the Federal Register look positively brief by comparison (the Federal Register, for those who won’t google it, is NOT brief). But I’m not just bitching. I have alternate ideas.

Scrap it all; let charity sort it out!

I have an idea, and like most of my ideas, I have the name before I have it fully fleshed out (as I’m good at brainstorming, but not planning). It’s called Passport, and anybody better than me at planning is free to steal it. Passport would be a nationwide health care charity, but it would not be applied for by patients. Herein lies disaster, because patients do not have the time, energy, or knowledge to take care of this crap (yet Medicare & Medicaid expect them to, sometimes with the help of underpaid, overloaded social workers).

Passport would be very simple. If a doctor had a patient that wasn’t paying their bills, for ANY reason, they would just submit the HCFA (CMS1500 to you newbies) to Passport. The doctor would determine if the patient was truly unable to take care of the claim, because the doctor & his/her staff see the patient every day, & have access to the patient’s information. The doctor’s staff can smell that the patient is homeless. That way, nobody is working the system. Doctors who erroneously or falsely submit claims to Passport would get in trouble, NOT the patient. The onus would be on the professional, not the sick person.

AND because there’d be no federal fee schedule, RVUs would stop being so ridiculously low & doctors could universally lower their charges, even out the rates, & actually cover their costs! My God, common sense! (Assuming the private plans followed suit, that is.)

Peeps donating to Passport would get fatty tax breaks. Super fatty.

Hmm? Hmm?

Also, those of you clamouring for free health care, let me let you in on a little secret: it already exists.

Exhibit A: If you show up to the ER, you cannot be turned away if you are truly sick. Most ERs won’t turn you away even if you are kinda sick.

Exhibit B: If you can’t pay your bill, no law enforcement officer is going to come after you. Your hospital or doctor will try to get you state or federal aid. If you don’t qualify, & you still can’t pay, your doctor will have to jump through hoops to get your bill written off if he/she participates with Medicare, because if you take Medicare patients, IT IS AGAINST THE LAW TO GIVE FREE CARE. What?! Yes, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT DOESN’T LET US GIVE FREE CARE because of kick back laws. Because it’s caring like that. Innerestin’, huh? Hospitals also have to prove it with tons of paperwork, but unlike doctors, they have armies of staff to do this paperwork.

Exhibit C: If you still can’t be written off for some reason, you will just be sent to collections. Sure, your credit score will go down, but you can always file for medical bankruptcy and be good as gold in 7 years. If you think a person cannot live or function in collections AND get continuous, uninterrupted, high quality health care, boy do I have proof to the contrary (that I can’t share because of HIPAA).

America already HAS free health care. It is not perfect, it is not equally applied, but that is due to misinterpretation of confusing laws. It is not due to cruelty or greed.

You can watch all the soppy TV & listen to all the politicians you like. You won’t know the truth until you talk to human beings in the field, read things your government publishes. Or, y’know, just listen to crazy bitches rant.