Saturday, November 29, 2008

U.S. overpaying for health care

We're not getting the health care we pay for, say experts consulted by the Washington Post.
"The United States today devotes 16 percent of its gross domestic product to medical care, more per capita than any other nation in the world. Yet numerous measures indicate the country lags in overall health: It ranks 29th in infant mortality, 48th in life expectancy and 19th out of 19 industrialized nations in preventable deaths."
Read more at -

Friday, November 28, 2008

Love will find a way

My friend Robert Buckman, an Army Reservist on duty in Baghdad, shared with me a letter home that a sergeant in his unit wrote earlier this week. Whatever we may think about the reasons we sent U.S. forces over there, this glimpse at one soldier's thinking deserves reflection.

My friends, it has been over a year since I set foot in God's country, four years to the day since I left it, the first time. I can tell you that in this past year I have seen miracles. I have seen compassion and love and friendship and hope and promise for a brighter future. I have seen the effects of ignorance and greed and intolerance. I had my life threatened and protected by divine intervention. I have faced rocket and mortar attack, and always kept a smile on my face. I have seen friends pass from this world at the hands of evil men. I have seen lives turned around after experiencing compassion and love. It has been an enriching and satisfying journey. My family has grown to include these wonderful people. It seems that I now have two countries that I call home. How blessed I am.

This is such a noble cause: World Peace. My sword is my compassion. My shield is my hope. My armor is the love in my heart. My compass is my faith.

I urge all of you to take up this cause and reach out to your neighbors and those whom you have yet to meet and extend your heart in compassion and good will. I have found that Good Will transcends language and culture. It is so powerful!

We all have much work to do in order to save our world. We are all well capable of doing it. Like the four little men who saved their "middle" earth. We too, can save our world. Love will find a way. Listen to your heart.

Much Love and Many Blessings to you all.


David Kalikiano Perry

Friday, November 07, 2008

Federal energy aid comes to Florida

My partner is politically progressive but always practical. The following report in The Miami Herald

Federal energy aid comes to Florida

prompted a particularly frank response:
Okay... what is this about?
What is Home Energy Assistance giving these people? Hot water?
Perhaps if you are elderly you need air conditioning? So people eat bad food, develop bad habits, get asthma and then we pay to give them 60-degree homes? Can we tell them the temp can't go below 76 degrees? In general, air conditioning should be luxury. As one who rides their bike and sweats in the worst (almost) weather, I have little sympathy.
I would add that air conditioning does help people with heart problems. We may lament the habits that strained or damaged their hearts, but I wouldn't want to deny them help. Let's teach energy thrift in setting the thermostat and choosing low-wattage lighting, then let the good climes roll.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Ginny's life's journey in 800 words

My friend Ginny Rorby reveals a bit of how she came to be the compassionate person I know.
I remember her eyes. There was no joy to see me marching toward her. Instead she leaned, picked her huge purse off the floor and put it on the seat next to her. "You can't sit here, Ginny," she said when I was beside her.
It's a timely essay in the St. Petersburg Times.