Jim Waters: Blood-sucking bad ideas reappear in rearview mirror

*GASP*

Page One commentary: We think Waters’ column this week is woah off the mark. Steve Beshear has not released a universal health care plan. He’s released a shitty “let’s cover the babies and elderly” hope piece. Crack on Hillary Clinton all you want over anything (this is not an endorsement) but let’s get real here: a free market bull profit system is not the answer. It hasn’t been the answer for 30 years. It’s time to move on. It doesn’t work. The entire world is proof.

I (Jake) have gotta say: the free market has jack to do with health insurance. Absofreakinglutely nothing. Allowing private business to handle the most precious part of our lives just so they can turn a profit has proved the point that the current system doesn’t work. It’s a failure. And the crap Brereton Jones pulled with health insurance is a far cry from universal health care.

This gets us fired up. Our nation’s health shouldn’t be political fodder. It’s time to get off that pot.

What do you think about it, readers? Get fired up. Respond. Let us know! We publish Jim to create discussion and he always does a great job of getting his point across.


Blood-sucking bad ideas reappear in rearview mirror

By Jim Waters

Not even the arrest of “if-he-did-it” icon O.J. Simpson this week completely overshadowed Hillary Clinton’s attempt to replay the nightmare that Americans escaped the first time around – a government takeover of the nation’s health-care system.

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What’s Your Rank? Health of Kentucky Counties

It’s no surprise that smoking, poor nutrition and lack of insurance put Kentuckians at risk. There’s a whole host of other issues to tackle, though, and for the first time ever all 120 Kentucky counties have been ranked from most healthy to least healthy.

Maybe health care is more important than gambling? Maybe health care should be taken more seriously? Wait, wait– we apologize. Gambling and alleged accountability are the most pressing issues facing Kentuckians.


120 County Ranking - Health



Oldham County leads the pack as the state’s healthiest. Wolfe County is at the bottom. No surprise, as Oldham is also one of Kentucky’s wealthiest. Wolfe is among the state’s poorest, as are the other ten counties ranked as Kentucky’s least healthy. All ten lowest-ranked counties are in Appalachia. Further evidence that our gubernatorial candidates should be focusing on the eastern part of the state.

While not the most important, we found it notable that Kentucky leads the nation in work-related injuries. Nonfatal injuries are 28% higher and fatal injuries are 75% higher than the national rate. Mostly thanks to our high concentration of workers in risky industries like mining and manufacturing.

Notable statistics: % of high school graduates: Oldham 87, Wolfe 54; % of uninsured: Oldham 8, Wolfe 21; number of drug arrests per 100k: Oldham 37, Wolfe 2,128.

Still high on the Kentucky win?

Do they matter? Running mates aren’t really a factor in the race for governor. But Mongiardo’s more popular and has more positives than Rudolph. [H-L]

They want to vote. Some 82% of Kentuckians want the chance to to vote on (against) casino gaming. Ernie’s strategy of ‘casinos = the gays will eat your children’ has sorely backfired. [PolWatchers]

In case you missed it. Kentucky is the talk of the Nation. Namely, everyone’s drive to rid Mitch McConnell of his elected position. The piece about bluegrass grassroots activism opens with the story of Carol Trainer (an activist friend of ours in Louisville) being arrested on Memorial day for protesting the war. We still think Democratic Sheriff John Aubrey owes her an apology for that one. [Nation]

(Lex) VA fails on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Only VA medical center in the country to fail on four points. Things could be changing for the better in 2007. It’s about time the VA and military begin to recognize PTSD and treat it. Better late than never. [H-L]

Rep. John Yarmuth afraid of strippers. Or porn stars. For real– we would be, too! 21C hosted an event with Annie Sprinkle a week ago. She moved her breasts in time to classical music while wearing black opera gloves and folks could get into bed with her. John didn’t attend. [C-J]

Is Jim Bunning delusional? Kentuckians aren’t opposed to the Iraq war? Is he for real? He says very little communication from constituents is about Iraq. We’re beginning to believe the insanity rumors. [Enquirer]

We still need your help.

Breaking: AIPAC Fundraiser Moved

LEO‘s Managing Editor Stephen George just confirmed that Jewish Hospital has decided not to host the September 10th AIPAC fundraiser featuring controversial figure Dan Senor. Senor is affiliated with Fox News and the group Vets for Freedom.

A source with Jewish Hospital revealed to Page One earlier today that many physicians were upset about being invited to the event and expressed concern about its location. Though not confirmed, one surgical group allegedly threatened to cancel surgeries in protest.

Barbara Mackovich, spokesperson for Jewish Hospital, told George the event will instead be hosted at the Louisville home of Bill Yarmuth.

Yarmuth is the brother of U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY 3) and is CEO & President of the health care company Almost Family.

Welcome to Autumn. AKA Slow news day.

Who knew? Hal Rogers drops $400k on Lake Cumberland for tourism advertising. [H-L]

Too little too late? Gubernatorial candidates finally discuss public health and its problems. [H-L]

The Courier-Journal rightly questions both gubernatorial candidates’ health care agendas. Surprisingly, they hit on the scare tactics used to freak your shit out about socialized medicine. And they criticize both for being afraid to discuss a cigarette tax. What isn’t discussed is why neither candidate wants to provide health care for all Kentuckians– instead of just children or the elderly. [C-J]

Five of the six regional university boards have been stacked by Fletcher. Some day we’ll get little things like following the law right. Right? [C-J]

While Kentucky soldiers die left and right, things are just peachy in Iraq. We might not even need to stay there that much longer! [WP]

Shepherd Shears his Sheep!

Dr. James Holsinger – Funnelling Millions from his Church

From the Steve Henry Financial Playbook Dept

Dr. James HolsingerAn investigation into George Bush’s nominee for Surgeon General, gay-hating Dr. James Holsinger, used the sale of a United Methodist Church-owned hospital in Kentucky as a cash cow for his personal ambitions.

It took years of litigation by the church to get to the bottom of what happened to its money, only to learn that Holsinger diverted millions to endow professorships at the Chandler Medical Center at UK where he served as Chancellor and chief fundraiser.

Will the Senate question Holsinger’s ethics?

In case you need a break from Senators and their bathroom sex…

Good entertainment. If you haven’t had a chance, listen to the radio “debate” between Fletcher and Beshear. If we’re basing things on courtesy and manners displayed in this radio show alone? Neither of these gentleman have any. Endless blabbering after repeated requests to stop were ignored. And ignored. And ignored. [WKYX]

When giants attack. Attorney General Greg Stumbo is on the right side of the nightmarish Monsanto-Delta & Pine merger. Monstanto, the world’s largest producer of pesticides and genetically engineered seed, is best known for using their GRE plants to obliterate the crops of legitimate farmers– permanently infecting the food chain. Oh– and they tried to patent the pig. [Legal Newsline]

Gaming the System. Humana breaks the law, pays $500,000 fine for misleading customers, using unlicensed agents. Imagine it– a health insurance giant skirting the law and paying a fine. Just the cost of doing business, right? [Business First]

Meanwhile, the number of individuals without health insurance nationwide is skyrocketing. (14% of Kentuckians lack coverage) The Census Bureau released figures showing the number of those without insurance rose from 44.8 million in 2005 to 47 million in 2006. That means– based on numbers two years old– nearly 16% of the population doesn’t have health coverage. People covered by employer-based health insurance fell 1.5% and the number of uninsured children rose 700,000 to 8.7 million in the same 2005-2006 period of time. [Business First, H-L]

We didn’t know Seattle had Republicans! A waitress (server, to be politically correct) helped anonymously pen a facetious blog complaint against Stefan Sharkansky. Apparently, he lets his kids run rampant and is a horrible tipper. Sounds like a familiar former Democratic Lt. Governor of Kentucky, if you ask us! [Consumerist]

Taking it to their doorsteps. War protesters rally against Sen. Mitch McConnell tonight. Thousands in Kentucky are expected to take part in National Take a Stand Day, holding a rally and a march to McConnell’s home in Louisville. [WLKY]