Daily Archives: July 30, 2012
In the Inland Empire, an economically depressed region in Southern California, President Obama’s health care law is expected to extend insurance coverage to more than 300,000 people by 2014. But coverage will not necessarily translate into care: Local health experts doubt there will be enough doctors to meet the area’s needs. There are not enough now.
Other places around the country, including the Mississippi Delta, Detroit and suburban Phoenix, face similar problems. The Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that in 2015 the country will have 62,900 fewer doctors than needed. And that number will more than double by 2025, as the expansion of insurance coverage and the aging of baby boomers drive up demand for care. Even without the health care law, the shortfall of doctors in 2025 would still exceed 100,000.
An interesting discussion–read it all.
Last week the EU rejected Israel’s request to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organisation. The recent attack in Bulgaria, in which five Israeli tourists were killed and 30 others wounded, and the concern that Syria may provide Hezbollah with chemical weapons, added urgency to Israel’s request. Nonetheless, Europe, which is vulnerable to terrorism on its own soil, refused the request, in part on the grounds that Hezbollah is also a political party.
Hezbollah does indeed play on both fields: it is a terrorist organisation operated by Iran and a Lebanese political party. But the EU’s stance, whereby political activity is regarded as sound defence against being declared a terrorist organisation provides legitimacy to terrorism, encourages violence, and fatally harms moderates.
Europe, the cradle of democracy, should have stated unequivocally: one cannot be involved in terrorism and enjoy the legitimacy of a political party….
Read it all (requires subscription).
Mario Draghi has promised the moon. The European Central Bank’s council had better deliver on his pledge this week. If it does not, the crisis will surely escalate out of control in August or soon after.
We are beyond the point where a quarter point rate cut will achieve anything. Nor will it help to launch a fresh round of “temporary and limited” bond purchases – to use the self-defeating language that Mr Draghi is forced to utter.
The only issue that matters at this late stage is whether Germany is willing to let the ECB step up to its responsibility as a global central bank after two years of ideological posturing and take all risk of sovereign default in Spain and Italy off the table – which it can do easily enough once it stops playing politics and obeys the “financial stability” clause (Article 127) of the Lisbon Treaty.
Listen to it all if you care to do so.
The lowest percentage in poverty since we started counting was 11.1 percent in 1973. The rate climbed as high as 15.2 percent in 1983. In 2000, after a spurt of prosperity, it went back down to 11.3 percent, and yet 15 million more people are poor today.
At the same time, we have done a lot that works. From Social Security to food stamps to the earned-income tax credit and on and on, we have enacted programs that now keep 40 million people out of poverty. Poverty would be nearly double what it is now without these measures, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. To say that “poverty won” is like saying the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts failed because there is still pollution.
With all of that, why have we not achieved more? Four reasons: An astonishing number of people work at low-wage jobs. Plus, many more households are headed now by a single parent, making it difficult for them to earn a living income from the jobs that are typically available. The near disappearance of cash assistance for low-income mothers and children ”” i.e., welfare ”” in much of the country plays a contributing role, too. And persistent issues of race and gender mean higher poverty among minorities and families headed by single mothers.
Susan E. Goff became the first female bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia when she was consecrated Saturday in Richmond.
The elaborate ceremony, which lasted more than two hours, reflected Goff’s goal of reaching out to Latinos, Asians and other people of color.
A Gospel selection, for example, was read in Korean, Spanish, Vietnamese and English.
Just and eternal God, we offer thanks for the stalwart faith and persistence of thy servants William Wilberforce and Anthony Ashley-Cooper, who, undeterred by opposition and failure, held fast to a vision of justice in which no child of yours might suffer in enforced servitude and misery. Grant that we, drawn by that same Gospel vision, may persevere in serving the common good and caring for those who have been cast down, that they may be raised up through Jesus Christ; who with thee and the Holy Spirit livest and reignest, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
O Almighty and merciful Lord, who givest unto thy faithful people the Holy Spirit as a sure pledge of thy heavenly kingdom: Grant unto us this same Spirit, that he may bear witness with our spirit that we be thy children and heirs of thy kingdom; through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Be gracious to me, O God, for men trample upon me; all day long foemen oppress me; my enemies trample upon me all day long, for many fight against me proudly. When I am afraid, I put my trust in thee. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust without a fear. What can flesh do to me?
Choreographer Akram Khan has said he is upset his Olympic opening ceremony tribute to victims of the 7 July London bombings was not aired in the US.
Khan said he felt “disheartened and disappointed” NBC cut the segment which featured him and 50 dancers perform to Abide With Me, sung by Emeli Sande.
Instead, NBC aired an interview with American Idol host Ryan Seacrest and US Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps.
Peter Moore says no–read it all also.
Alex Sanders says yes–read it all.
Between those who support gay marriage and those who back the Church’s campaign against it, there is another group that is not making its views known.
I refer to the many liberal Catholics who feel uneasy about gay marriage but stay silent. Perhaps they are afraid of being perceived as homophobic or maybe they feel so uncomfortable about how their Church has treated gay Christians that they have allowed this to sway their judgement.
As someone who supports civil partnerships and – in particular cases – gay adoption I think it is important to stand up and say that marriage should be reserved for heterosexual couples for the sake of the wellbeing and security of children. By sanctioning same-sex marriage, society would be sending out a powerful message that it makes absolutely no difference whether a child is brought up by a gay or straight couple….