23 January 2014

Goodness gracious, has it been that long?

I can't believe it's been a year since I posted. I apologize to everyone who's been looking in on me, I know you expected better. I expected better from myself.

I offer no excuses, but I hope this helps explain the hiatus- my youngest was diagnosed with autism. We've still got a long way to go, but after a great deal of intensive therapy he's finally starting to show some improvement and I think I'll have time to devote to the blog again.

02 January 2013

Health: Antibiotics & other medications

If you have a sick FISH, or think your FISH might need any of the following in the future (available without Rx):


Also for ailing FISH:


Or for you BIRD lovers out there:


If you're afraid you may have gotten your PET medications mixed up, you can double check for yourself:

Be an informed PET OWNER and always check the proper applications and contraindications of any and all medications before you use them.

29 December 2012

Thoughts: To the Baby Boomers

I'd like to address this one to the Baby Boomers. Don't get all riled up just because I said that, my parents are Boomers and I love them dearly. It's just that I get tired of being called a part of the "Gimme Generation" by people who have no idea what they're talking about.

Ignore birth control girl, and everything you've seen on the news about Occupy. The news media likes to stick a camera in the face of the person who's going to provide a lucrative soundbite for a sensational story. They have no interest in reporting the truth.

The truth is that I've been paying into Social Security since I joined the workforce, knowing full well that I'll never see a dime of it back.

The truth is that Medicare will not be there for me when I retire.

The truth is that I'm not voting for your political candidates because they suck, and when I try to get involved in the political process you blow me off.

The truth is that I didn't want to fight in your stupid war, but I needed a job and it was the only one I could get with no experience and no college.

The truth is that I don't care about your "War on terror" because I'm pretty sure you made it up, and we can't afford to pay for it.

The truth is I can't believe you're so willfully ignorant of anything that isn't broadcast on the news, and that you blindly believe everything you see on TV. I'm a product of public schooling and even I know more about research and critical thinking than that.

The truth is that I don't care about your "protection of marriage" crap, because I saw the ER staff bar my gay friend from seeing her partner after she was in a car accident because she wasn't family, and I thought that was B.S.

The truth is that I don't care about your "war on drugs", because I know it's not working and it's costing me money. Besides, you smoked weed in the 60s. Don't be a hypocrite.

The truth is that your fiscal cliff sucks, and I can't afford to pay any more taxes.

The truth is that my mortgage is underwater, I'm drowning in student debt, my grocery bill is eating up my paycheck, my medical bills go unpaid because my employer cut benefits after Obamacare passed, I haven't gotten a raise in years and I can't ask for one because I'll be laid off and my job outsourced if I do. By the way, I'm declaring bankruptcy.

The truth is that you can't have my guns, even if it's "for the children" because if I give them up I have no way of addressing a group of tyrants who don't represent me using force to take what little I have.

I don't want you to "Gimme" anything. The only thing I want from you is to be left alone. Leave my paycheck alone. Leave my healthcare (or lack thereof) alone. Leave my Constitution alone. Leave everyone else alone. Quit meddling with things, you're just making it worse.

Don't push me. I will push back.

28 December 2012

Thoughts: Support Our Troops

I've been told by several well meaning people "Thank you for your service". (Yeah, I'm a vet.) I never know quite what to say to that, though. You're welcome? Wake up, we've been lied to?

I hear people everywhere saying "Support our troops." What the heck does that mean? Nothing. It's a meaningless phrase. If you really wanted to support the troops, you'd quit electing people who send us off to die in undeclared and unconstitutional wars.

I hear so-called conservatives rant about "Boots on the ground", mostly secure in the fact that it won't be their boots. This is the part that gets ignored- people come back broken, mentally and physically, and can't get it together. Consider the fact that it was only two years ago that the VA admitted that Agent Orange may have been bad for people. They still deny that exposure to depleted uranium is causing health problems. Don't even get me started on PTSD.

The growing number of homeless vets is just one of the symptoms.

Propaganda-driven wars for profit are the problem. Support the troops, bring them home.

photo credit

26 December 2012

Finances: Cash, gold, & digital money

With all this talk of the coming financial crises I see people largely taking one of two viewpoints.

The first is to be stubbornly, pitifully oblivious. "Economics? Financial news? Who reads that? There's a post-holiday sale at the mall, let's go stand in line. I want a new iPhone, and pity the fool who gets in my way."

credit for photo
If that's your take on it, then I really have nothing to say to you. Sorry.

The second is to be aware, but overwhelmed by the problem. "What can I do? This is so much bigger than me. It's on a national, even global scale. Maybe I should buy some gold."

If this is you, I may have some words of advice. This is just my two cents, so use your own discretion, but there are some things to consider. First, look at history.

During the Great Depression, banks started closing at the first sign of trouble. Banks exist to protect themselves and their investors. The fact that they have your money is secondary. If all you have is money in the bank when they lock you out and limit your ATM deposits, you have nothing.

Argentina bank after collapse
Ask the people who lived in Argentina during their financial collapse in 2001. The banks closed and limited ATM transactions, the government seized private assets, and all sorts of other ugliness happened. Read what Ferfal of Surviving in Argentina wrote about the "corralito" and living in a country that went to hell almost overnight.

The lesson here is not to stuff all your money in the mattress and pray for the best. It's to have cash on hand. You know, that paper stuff we all used to pay our bills with before the invention of debit cards? "Digital" money can be created or deleted in an instant, but immediately following a crises the kind of money you can fold and put in your pocket can be priceless. Not a lot, just an emergency fund- maybe a month of expenses for you and your family.

My second suggestion is to invest in goods. This includes gold, but I wouldn't put too much emphasis on it. You want things that can be used for barter, or used by yourself in an emergency. Food, potable water, blankets, toilet paper, simple tools, medical supplies, etc. You may also want to invest in luxury items such as tobacco, alcohol and candy. Even if you don't use them yourself, they may come in handy for trade. . .or bribes, if it comes to that.

Just my thoughts.

25 December 2012

Safety & security: Gun registration

If you missed it on the news, a newspaper in New York has taken it upon themselves to publish an interactive map showing the names and addresses of all persons who legally own a gun in several New York counties.

This is wrong on so many levels that I don't even know where to start, but let me use it to illustrate one point: gun registration only seems harmless. I mentioned it briefly in my post about open carry. If you register your gun you have created a record. That record may be used by clever criminals, by government agents acting under color of law, or (as in this case) by idiot media hounds out to create a sensational news story and violate your privacy.

Gun registration was one of the first steps undertaken in the UK during their bid for gun control. After law abiding gun owners registered their guns, the British government used those same records to confiscate guns throughout the country.

Don't fall for it.

22 December 2012

Health: Cold & flu remedies

The whole family isn't feeling too hot due to some nasty viral upper respiratory infection, and I have two kids too small for the usual OTC remedies. I've broken out the NSAIDs, the steam vaporizer, the chest rub, the saline spray, and the plug-in-the-wall "waterless" vaporizer - which is basically an aromatherapy diffuser and can be refreshed by dampening the pads with this instead of the pricey refills:


You can use eucalyptus by itself or make your own blend with menthol, lavender, what-have-you. Most of these things do their best work when used at night, in a closed bedroom. Not keeping themselves awake all night coughing makes for happier babies, but I still wish there was something more I could do for them.

Does anyone know of something that works that I haven't tried?