Thursday, June 28, 2012

We won !!!

John Roberts must have realized how he would be perceived in the history books because he voted with the liberal branch of SCOTUS and now there is no doubt that the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.  The one exception was the provision expanding Medicaid.  It is up to the states on how they will, or will not, implement this provision.  Because I was a trifle confused over this I went to my search engine and found the following explanation.

The provision in question expands eligibility for Medicaid to all people under the age of 65 who live below 133 percent of the poverty line, according to Bloomberg. If states did not comply with extending Medicaid, the provision threatened them with withdrawing all Medicaid funding.

The court ruled that states which do not expand eligibility will only have to forgo federal funds which are meant for the expansion, not all Medicaid funds.
The SCOTUS blog said, "On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn't comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding."

Essentially, the justices voted to leave it up to states on whether they wanted to participate in the Medicaid expansion program, said PBS NewsHour.

More on GlobalPost: 
"About half of the people who are expected to gain coverage under the Affordable Care Act gain it through the Medicaid program," said Alan Weil, the executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy, according to NPR. "So this is not a small change to Medicaid, and it's also not a small part of the Affordable Care Act.

The Medicaid provision of the law would expand health care to an estimated 17 million more people over the next 10 years, according to NPR

The right wing have wasted no time preparing to repeal the act.  I just got a robo-call telling me how ACA was going to bankrupt the nation.  At that point I hung up so I don't know what other lies it contained.  Strange, the Republicans are the only ones in my city using robo-calls, but I have gotten 5 telling me how great Romney is.  Grrrrr!!!  I take a small amount of pleasure hanging up on them.  The PAC money is in full swing.  Thank you Karl Rove (not).

After the election we must all start working to improve ACA and fight for a single payer system.  The bloated insurance companies have no business in health care and the only way to reverse the monetary health care crisis the country is suffering from is to get rid of them and their rapidly rising premiums.   Too many people will still be left without insurance until a single payer system is enacted. 

After Scalia's disgusting rant we must elect Obama again for two very important reasons.  Romney has vowed to repeal ACA.  This must not happen.  And the next president will probably get to nominate 2 new Justices.  We must not have any more Allitos, Thomas or Scalias on the court. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Saturday Excursion

 My big weekend is over and I am basking in the memory of a lovely day spent picnicking on MT. Lemmon with my son, Mark, my daughter Gail, and two dogs.  On the way down I took pictures from the moving truck with  a dirty windshield.  

Start with our picnic spot and continue with me from the tall pines down to the Saguaros at the foot of the mountain. 

I think this looks like a profile of an ancient king.  Or perhaps you will see a cartoon animal.

If you look closely you can see 3 parts of the highway as it curves around the mountain.

Notice the strata of the geologic layering

These rock climbers are nuts.

 The following is copied from Wikipedia.

Mount Lemmon is the highest point in the Santa Catalina Mountains, located in the Coronado National Forest north of Tucson, Arizona, United States. It is 9,157 feet (2,791 m) above sea-level, and receives approximately 180 inches of snow annually. Mount Lemmon was named in honor of botanist Sarah Lemmon, who trekked to the top of the mountain with Native American guides by mule and foot in 1881.[citation needed]


Summerhaven is a small town near the top of the mountain. It is a summer residence for many but there are some year round residents. There are many small cabins most of which are being rebuilt after the Aspen Fire of July 2003, and recovery is still taking place.[clarification needed] It is near Ski Valley which is the southernmost ski destination in the continental United States.

Mount Lemmon Station Observatory

View of the telescopes on Mount Lemmon
At the peak of Mount Lemmon is an astronomical observatory, which was formerly the site of an USAF radar base of the Air Defense Command[citation needed], and the building that formerly housed a military emergency radar tracking station for landing the Space Shuttle at White Sands Missile Range. Although the United States military had a presence on the mountain for several decades all their facilities have been abandoned and were given to the United States Forest Service. The area and buildings that makes up the Mount Lemmon Station Observatory are leased from the Forest Service by the University of Arizona. The telescopes on the mountain are still used for astronomical research today by organizations such as the Catalina Sky Survey, and The [Mount Lemmon Sky Center], The University of Arizona Astronomy Camp program,[2] the University of Arizona, and the University of Minnesota. The educational resources at the top of the mountain make it a unique research and teaching destination.

Windy Point

The location 'Windy Point' was built by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, using a large number of prisoners over a period of 18 years, and is a popular place for outdoor weddings.[citation needed]

Catalina Highway

Catalina Highway climbing Mount Lemmon