Saturday, May 22, 2010

750 million for blackmail?

Over at Instapundit, Guestblogger Ann Althouse asks the question: Should Elin Nordegren settle with Tiger Woods for $750 million if it includes “a lifetime ‘confidentiality clause’ that would prevent her from writing a book or doing any interviews about the split”? She has a poll up over at her blog asking readers what they thought with the following options:

Yes. That’s so much money!
Yes. We’ll all be better off if that nasty material never sees the light of day.
Yes. Elin, you will be better off looking for the future and not dwelling on the past.
No. Tiger must pay for what he did and shouldn’t get anything back in exchange.
No. You need to explore and air this all out for your own good.
No. I want to read all about it! Come on! Dish it out!

None of those options seems adequate. How about:

"No, this thief does not deserve that kind of money for engaging in blackmail."

What would your response be?

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Friday, May 21, 2010

Younger next year?

Last night, I read the book, Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy - Until You're 80 and Beyond. The theme is how to get functionally younger as you get older by putting off the normal problems of aging--weakness, sore joints, and bad balance as well as reducing illness and injury. The authors, a patient, Chris Crowley, who is a retired lawyer and his medical doctor, Henry Lodge, take turns writing chapters about how to stay fit and younger for men. Though there was some good advice, I found it rather depressing, but maybe that's just me.

Apparently, all kinds of terrible things happen to you as you age while male, according to the book. Hair grows out of your ears, you can't hear well and your balance begins to suck. Women, even those who are not so young, walk by as if you are not there. And everyone in the office sees you as retirement material. In addition, you get hit with something called "the Ugly Stick" where you wake up one day and find out that you've turned into a real dog:

Suddenly, your skin gets weird, all over.....In fact, there's going to come a time when there are going to be little notches on your upper lip, as if your teeth were showing through. Ugh. And spots all over the place. And wattles down your neck.

The authors offer decent advice on exercise, the importance of strength training and eating right, etc. but they remind you that you are still old. Yes, very true, but I think something more uplifting would have been helpful. One of the reasons that older people become depressed is not actually being old, it's being told by society that they are old and that they are long past their due date.

For example, in one chapter entitled, "Chasing the Iron Bunny," author Crowley describes how men have been trained to chase the iron bunny like the greyhounds at the race track. Apparently, men who were trying to make money at jobs were "dopes" who bought into a game that led to a materialistic lifestyle. Crowley tells men of a certain age that "it's over. Time to quit playing and come inside." For some men, that would be suicidal.

I could go on, but I will stop here. I have to say that, despite the above, I did enjoy the book and it is worth reading for Dr. Lodge's advice, which is good.

I would be interested to hear how some of you out there cope with aging? Do you have your own personal tips that you could share? Apparently, anyone over the age of mid-thirties in our society is considered "old" so don't feel like you have to be over 65 to give advice.


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Communication, not manipulation, is key

Marianne Murciano, the woman with the How to Train your Man website that I wrote about here sent me an email. Here is part of it:

If you take the time to read what this is really all about, you’ll realize that it’s far from being demeaning and degrading. Although the phrase, “Train a Man” can be upsetting to some men, it actually gets them whatever they want. I’m giving people sound advice; encouraging women to be honest about their relationships, and showing them how to ask for things they want while giving their partners what they want as well. I don’t need to apologize for talking about mutual respect, or creating a great relationship out of a mediocre one. In the process I’m hitting some hot buttons.

Along with the truth, I’ve tried to incorporate a sense of humor. Have you personally seen the videos? Check them out. I hope you’re in a good relationship and that you and your mate are able to get a few laughs! What you’ll see are the issues we all struggle with. I didn’t make them up.

So, I watched the video I embedded below entitled, "The maid's on strike." A husband was referred to as "a child" for not helping enough with the housework and there seemed to be a lot of manipulation going on. Ms. Murciano (I'm going to assume that was her in the video) was telling the woman not to be the person that her husband expected if he did not do what she wanted--that is, she should not be an organized, detailed person who made his life easy.

Silly me. I thought relationships were supposed to be about two adults who communicate their thoughts and feelings to each other. I didn't know that one spouse (the woman) is supposed to treat her husband like the puppy dog she picked up at the pound last week. I get a bad feeling when one spouse tries to control another one with "training techniques." That does not seem humorous to me.

How would women respond to a video by a husband to "train" your woman to put out more? Or what if a husband was upset because he felt his wife did not appreciate the money he was bringing in from working? Instead of communicating with her, should he "train her" by being the bumbling free-loader that stays home, drinks beer and scratches his crotch? Maybe so.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

WSJ: "New Dads, Too, Can Suffer Depression."

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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Jiffy Lube Health care

There is an interesting article in the Weekly Standard entitled, "Cash for Doctors" with the subtitle "And other ways to escape the diktats of Obamacare:"
On a wall inside Dr. Brian Forrest’s medical office in a suburb of Raleigh, North Carolina, is something you won’t find in most doctors’ offices, a price list:

Office visit $49

Wrist splint $41

Pap-smear $51.

Those are the prices patients pay for the services, and they pay on the spot. Forrest doesn’t take insurance. If he did, the prices would be far higher and not nearly as transparent. He says listing prices up front is about trying to do business in a straightforward way, “like a Jiffy Lube.”

Straight forward can be good. It often gets tiring to get bills from the doctor or hospital that are confusing, not transparent at all, and often, wrong.


Monday, May 17, 2010

The Barrister at Maggie's Farm blog: "Authoritarian Leftism is a sickness, and as evil as sociopathy. Maybe it is a form of sociopathy. I don't know. These people need to learn a little humility...and a few other things too."

"Massachusetts residents seek mental health treatment at levels higher than just about anywhere else in the country, "

In an article about limits on mental health services, I found the following kind of interesting (via Newsalert) :

Massachusetts residents seek mental health treatment at levels higher than just about anywhere else in the country, according to data from United Behavioral Health, a California-based insurer that is the nation’s largest providing mental health services.

It is the insurer used by the Group Insurance Commission and many Massachusetts companies, and its records show that nearly 12 percent of the nearly 1.2 million state residents covered by United’s insurance receive mental health treatment, second in the nation to Rhode Islanders, at 12.9 percent.

Dr. Rhonda Robinson Beale, United’s chief medical officer, said the recession has forced many of the companies for which it provides coverage to make tough choices. “Our customers are facing downsizing or laying off people,’’ Beale said, “and they’re also trying to maintain benefits for people and trying not to increase their out-of-pocket costs.’’

I wonder why more Massachusetts residents seek mental health treatment than the rest of the country? Do they just believe in talk therapy more? Is it something else about their environment that is causing emotional problems? Or do they just use the services because they are available, or do more people with emotional problems move to Massachusetts?

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Sunday, May 16, 2010

PJM Political on Sirus-XM’s POTUS channel

Ed Driscoll has put together a PJM show for XM including my interviews with the Cuban-American bloggers of Babalu Blog and another of my interviews with advice columnist Amy Alkon who discusses her new book, I See Rude People.

You can listen to the show here.