Q: Was the Supreme Court ruling on Obamacare a victory or a defeat? A: Yes, it was.

Depending on your perspective, Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling upholding the “Obamacare” program was either a thumping victory for progressives everywhere or a clever corporatist / conservative flanking maneuver that makes it even less likely American citizens will ever enjoy the kind of basic access to healthcare that the rest of the developed world takes for granted.

I’ve been harshly critical of the president on the healthcare issue because I see it as something that helps a few people here and there, but that’s mainly designed as a gravy train for private health insurance interests. Many of Mr. Obama’s … I know I should say “supporters” here, but part of me is dying to use “apologists” instead … argue that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is an important foot in the door. In their view, this may be a small victory, but it paves the way for ever greater incremental reforms that lead us ultimately to a single-payor system (or at least a robust public option). Continue reading Q: Was the Supreme Court ruling on Obamacare a victory or a defeat? A: Yes, it was.

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If you live in a wildfire threatened area (or you know someone else who does), please read this now

I tripped across this earlier today. It was written by an experienced firefighter and represents some critically important advice for anyone who lives in the path of a wildfire (a particular concern for many along the Colorado Front Range).

Many thanks to hallbuzz for providing these tips.

The 2012 Colorado wildfires were predicted; now, understanding why they’re happening

The national media and much of America is watching the Colorado wildfire drama in rapt, apocalyptic fascination. For those who are just now recognizing the scope of the disaster, S&R has been writing about this (and predicting it) for some time now. If you’d like to better understand the causes of the explosion of wildfires in the summer of 2012, here’s a quick set of links to  get you caught up.

Facebook: the most congenitally dishonest company in America

If you are not paying for it, you’re not the customer; you’re the product being sold.”

Did you know you have a Facebook email address? Maybe you did and maybe you didn’t. But if you have a Facebook account you have a Facebook email. And that email is now your default email on FB.

WTF? You didn’t do that. NOBODY would do that. As Kashmir Hill writes at Forbes, it’s a lame attempt by our friends at Facebook to force their service on you. Gervais Markham is even more pointed:

In other words, Facebook silently inserted themselves into the path of formerly-direct unencrypted communications from people who want to email me. Continue reading Facebook: the most congenitally dishonest company in America

Hey, sports fans – it’s okay to hate on douchenozzles

There have been a lot of douchenozzles (DNs) in the news lately.

Hey, sports fans – it’s okay to hate on douchenozzles

There have been a lot of douchenozzles (DNs) in the news lately.

It’s true. I’m now pulling for LeBron.

I used to be a LeBron fan. Then came The Decision, which annoyed me mightily. It wasn’t that he left Cleveland – he should have left Cleveland – it was the whole spectacle of how he did it. As I explained when it happened, that ESPN special was the moral equivalent of buying time on national TV to break up with your girlfriend. It was as self-absorbed and cruel as it was unnecessary.

So I’ve enjoyed his life on the griddle. Flaming out in the Finals last year. Enduring relentless pressure about his tendency to disappear in crunch time. And on and on. It’s been a stress-packed couple of years for King James. In other words, karma. Continue reading It’s true. I’m now pulling for LeBron.

The new Amethyst Arsenic is out (a wee bit of self-promotion)

The Summer 2012 issue of Amethyst Arsenic, a great online poetry and art journal, is now available, featuring poetry from Cassandra de Alba, Mary Kovaleski Byrnes, James Caroline, Meaghan Ford, Hannah Galvin, Casey Rocheteau, Rene Schwiesow, Steve Subrizi and many more. Plus, art from Pauline Lim, Ivan de Monbrison and Jessica Pinsky. Also, yes, I have three pieces in it: “1638,” “Wedding Song,” and “Meditation: Monarch Mountain.” Here’s a taste:

Meditation: Monarch Mountain

Aspens white-barked, gold.
Winter is coming, early
snow on Monarch Pass.

Continue reading The new Amethyst Arsenic is out (a wee bit of self-promotion)

Big day: I have three new poems in the just-released Summer Amethyst Arsenic

The Summer 2012 issue of Amethyst Arsenic, a great online poetry and art journal, is now available, featuring poetry from Cassandra de Alba, Mary Kovaleski Byrnes, James Caroline, Meaghan Ford, Hannah Galvin, Casey Rocheteau, Rene Schwiesow, Steve Subrizi and many more. Plus, art from Pauline Lim, Ivan de Monbrison and Jessica Pinsky. Also, yes, I have three pieces in it: “1638,” “Wedding Song,” and “Meditation: Monarch Mountain.” Here’s a taste:

Meditation: Monarch Mountain

Aspens white-barked, gold.
Winter is coming, early 
snow on Monarch Pass.

Continue reading Big day: I have three new poems in the just-released Summer Amethyst Arsenic