Saturday, September 29, 2007

Another recall - beef this time

From the New York Times

Beef Recall for E. Coli Is Expanded
Published: September 30, 2007

A meat company yesterday issued a nationwide recall for 21.7 million pounds of ground beef products after reports of up to 25 cases of illness caused by suspected E. coli bacteria in eight states, including New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, federal officials reported.
The recall, by the Topps Meat Company of Elizabeth, N.J., covers a wide range of frozen hamburger patties and other products manufactured over the last year and bearing a “sell by” date or “best used by” date between last Tuesday and Sept. 25, 2008, along with the United States Department of Agriculture designation EST 9748.

Full article HERE

Friday, September 28, 2007

What are the Democrats afraid of?

I am baffled. What scares the Democrats, in both houses of congress, so much that vote with the repugs to condemn free speech in the form of an AD! Are they afraid of losing an election? of not staying in the power house that is D.C.?

From my point of view if you vote with the repugs - you ARE a repug! And I hope your constituents find a REAL democrat to face you in the next primary.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

My neighborhood v. the "big boys"

If you read this blog regularly you know I have no great admiration for king george or his cronies....

And now we in our neighborhood are being treated to repug tactics by the local drainage district.

Long story made short - our road is a levee - and someone or some entity has demanded all trees be removed. We can't get a truthful statement from the powers-that-be...[sound familiar?] At first we were told it was FEMA - I guess in it's post Katrina CYA mode.....but it's not FEMA..

The drainage district started leveling trees and the neighborhood got an injunction....
The hearing is set for Friday where our side is presenting current science and their side is using propaganda and threats.

One person told the big businesses that the neighbors were going to be responsible for the levee failing due to our trying to keep the trees and the big boys have threatened law suits against the neighborhood if damage occurs... One big boy was asked if he would he sue the drainage district if the trees were cut and that caused the levee to breach? No response.

Stay tuned for another people v. the powers-that-be saga from one small, very small, portion of Portland Oregon - a stretch of road that is less than 2 miles in length - but the road is a levee - hence the issues.

Check out more at my neighborhood blog: by clicking here

Sunday, September 23, 2007

How sad that we allow greed to run nursing homes!

I'm cross posting this from grow older better, my blog on healthy aging.

How terrible - but how American.

Corporate bottom lines take precedence over care for the least able to care for themselves - children and the elderly! MONEY is the prime mover in our country thee days....and id you are not among the millionaires - forget getting help! You just don't count...well except for the money the corporations can make off you...

And ask yourself - why do we continue to allow this?

From the New York Times
September 23, 2007
More Profit and Less Nursing at Many Homes

Habana Health Care Center, a 150-bed nursing home in Tampa, Fla., was struggling when a group of large private investment firms purchased it and 48 other nursing homes in 2002.

The facility’s managers quickly cut costs. Within months, the number of clinical registered nurses at the home was half what it had been a year earlier, records collected by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services indicate. Budgets for nursing supplies, resident activities and other services also fell, according to Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration.

The investors and operators were soon earning millions of dollars a year from their 49 homes.

Residents fared less well. Over three years, 15 at Habana died from what their families contend was negligent care in lawsuits filed in state court. Regulators repeatedly warned the home that staff levels were below mandatory minimums. When regulators visited, they found malfunctioning fire doors, unhygienic kitchens and a resident using a leg brace that was broken.

“They’ve created a hellhole,” said Vivian Hewitt, who sued Habana in 2004 when her mother died after a large bedsore became infected by feces.

Habana is one of thousands of nursing homes across the nation that large Wall Street investment companies have bought or agreed to acquire in recent years.

Those investors include prominent private equity firms like Warburg Pincus and the Carlyle Group, better known for buying companies like Dunkin’ Donuts.

As such investors have acquired nursing homes, they have often reduced costs, increased profits and quickly resold facilities for significant gains.

But by many regulatory benchmarks, residents at those nursing homes are worse off, on average, than they were under previous owners, according to an analysis by The New York Times of data collected by government agencies from 2000 to 2006.

Full article HERE