Hey folks, sorry for light posting. Life got in the way of writing. Hope to return to a more regular schedule Shortly.
Poor Chuck: Don’t get me wrong, I consider Chuck to be one of the problems with the modern Democratic Party — although it’s possible he’s just a symptom. Anyway, he sure is taking heat for this government shutdown ending. Like lots of source links? Enjoy.
More on kids: it ain’t easy being a poor kid in America.
Rent: Unfortunately, the big institutions that brought us the housing crisis aren’t particularly interested in being nice landlords either. Hmm, maybe that’s why rental law is governed on the state level.
Dinner was what mom cooked. If you didn’t like it, you had the option of going hungry. That’s if you were lucky. Some of you lived in households where you were cleaning your plate whether you like it or not.
You didn’t have any say over whether mom and dad had money for the latest cool toy. Strictly speaking, you didn’t have any say over whether mom and dad had money for shoes that actually fit you.
And you sure as heck had no control over where you lived. You lived where mom and/or dad said you would live. Doesn’t matter if it’s a nice house, a cheap apartment, a rat infested tenement, or wherever.
So this is why I support a clean DACA bill to give a clear path to citizenship to kids whose parents decided they would live in a foreign land. Those kids did not ask to be brought here illegally. They certainly did not have any say in the decision, no opportunity to persuade their parents otherwise. I also stillsupport comprehensive immigration reform that involves greatly simplifying the process, raising immigration caps, and stiff penalties for employers who don’t like following the law.
But while we’re on the topic of stuff kids can’t control, they also can’t control whether there’s enough money for health care. Unfortunately, Congress is continuing to drop the ball on renewing CHIP, the Children’s Health Insurance Program. That’s despite the fact that it has bipartisan support. That’s despite the fact that no Congressman is brave enough to come out against health care for kids who can’t afford it. Imagine the campaign ads against him!
Remember this when your Senators and Representatives come up for re-election.
In Closing: Poverty in America; Joe Arpaio just won’t go away; they missed #6, Democrats can win if they actually run better candidates than the competition.
Lately, politicians have been making a bunch of noise about affordable childcare. Here’s the part of the problem they are focusing on: “The average cost of full-time daycare for kids up to the age of 4 has reached $9,589 a year.” Just for reference, with the minimum wage at $7.50, a minimum wager lucky enough to actually get 40 hours a week 52 weeks a year makes $15,600 — and that almost never actually happens. Median income in the United States (remember, half of us earn more and half earn less) is
Median income in the United States (remember, half of us earn more and half earn less) is $53,657. That means that many families are spending a fifth of their monthly income or more on childcare. Even for somebody fortunate enough to make $100,000 is paying a tithe for an average daycare bill. Even though the problem is hitting low-income families hardest, the families of roughly 32,700,000 families feel this burn.
The other side of the problem is that child care workers are poorly paid: “These workers earned an average hourly wage of $9.40. This hourly pay rate translates to an average annual wage of $19,560. The median hourly pay rate was $8.94, which means that half of childcare workers in the daycare industry made more than $8.94 and half earned less.” This leads to high turnover, which isn’t good for the kids.
So let me summarize both halves of the coin: childcare workers are paid a pittance, yet child care is too expensive for workers who need it. That’s a big problem. It can’t be solved by paying childcare workers $15 an hour and raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour: that still leaves workers paying too much of their salary for childcare (X still equals X)! It can’t be solved (completely) by office daycare centers: over 80% of us work for small employers where that’s just not possible. It is neither practical nor desirable to assume that there will be willing and able relatives to take care of our children.
How do we solve this problem? I don’t know. The one thing I do know is that market forces are not sufficient to make it happen.
I’ve just completed the third semester of nursing school, and I’m back with some more little things I’ve learned, in no particular order.
On Maternity: The nurses in the maternity ward think they have the best job in the whole hospital! And there’s something to their opinion: the overwhelming majority of their patients are fundamentally well. No other part of the hospital can claim that.
On Level of Consciousness: It is not normal to sleep through a blood sugar check.
We All Need the Duhpartment of Research: Yes, sometimes we do need scientific proof of what seems to be perfectly obvious. That’s because sometimes the perfectly obvious gets proven right, and sometimes it gets proven wrong.
On the Passage of Time: It’s just as well I didn’t study back in the 80s or 90s. I might be one of those nurses who say things like “We’ve always done it this way!”
Sometimes Questions are Opportunities: When you can’t easily find that somebody has answered your question, there is room for you to run a study and find the answers for others.
On the NICU: When I arrived in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, I was prepared for a depressing day. Instead, I found the tiniest humans showing fierce fighting spirit and overcoming the odds every day, with help from extremely caring nurses… and of course a lot of equipment. It turned out to be a highly satisfying experience where I felt like I made a difference.
Preemies Need Coffee!: Well, not really. But a bit of caffeine does help them breathe better.
Magnetic: There is such a thing as a Magnet Hospital. Such hospitals are supposed to “promote excellence in nursing and healthcare.” Sounds very buzzword compliant, doesn’t it? However, it turns out that such hospitals do have lower mortality rates and brings in more revenue than it costs to attain. That last bit is why you’re likely to see more of them in the future.
And that just about wraps it up for my third semester of nursing school. Stay tuned for the final edition at the end of June!
Wouldn’t it be nice if the networks would set their science fiction shows in the near future, so it’s obvious the science is made up?
Ok, I confess I watched the premiere of CSI Cyber last night. I also confess that I was expecting to watch for the heckling value.
About the only things I’m willing to believe about the show are a) the FBI has (or should have) a cyber crimes division b) it’s possible to develop a code analysis tool that puts the bad stuff in red. Oh, and a Toyota Camry can’t float. Please note that although they lamented the fact that “it would take too long to brute force that long password (so obviously we feds just have to be able to bypass things things, you know, for the children),” they had a team member who used logic to figure it out. Also note that the existence of a back door in another system is what allowed the original crime to happen.
Also, ask yourself why you need your babycam (among other things) to be on the internet.
In Closing:most kids aren’t whisked away by strangers, no matter what you might see on TV; guess how many terrorists the NSA “collect all the calls” program has caught? ZERO.
Let me briefly put my position out there: vaccines save lives; herd immunity saves the lives of those who are too young or sick for vaccines, as well as those for whom the vaccine didn’t work as well as it should. The risks associated with the currently available vaccines are tiny compared to the risks of being hit by lightning. Vegas is uncomfortably close to Disneyland, has its own supposedly unrelated case of measles, and 3 cases of whooping cough in one high school. All preventable.
Today’s latest round — politicians have waded into the fray. Should we then call it Measlesgate? Vaxgate? Maybe just Stupidgate. So the President went on the record as saying the sensible thing: “You should get your kids vaccinated.” The crowd that would argue about the American flag being Red White and Blue if the Kenyan Muslim Usurper President said so immediately swung into action! They couldn’t come out and say “No no no, vaccinations are dangerous,” because that would be too stupid. Instead, two people who want to run for President in 2016, ChrisChristie and RandPaul, said that parents should be able to make the choice for themselves about whether to vaccinate their kids. Dr. Dean is not amused.
Ok, let’s talk about parental choice and child safety. When it comes to keeping children safe, the law doesn’t allow certain choices. Parents aren’t allowed to choose whether to use a car seat for a baby, or whether their older children use seat belts. Parent’s aren’t allowed to choose to withholdmedicalcare they don’t agree with in most states — even when the “child” is the one making the decision. We don’t let parents choose to do things that are known to put a child in danger (except let them play football, of course). The idea that parents should be able to choose to endanger their children (and those around them) is ludicrous.
In short, this is yet another argument where the facts just don’t support two sides to the issue.
Translation: Every Afternoon in Grenada, Every Afternoon a Child Dies.
Here in Las Vegas, our Child Protective Services office is under fire. Here’s a dead baby found incidental to police serving another warrant. Here’s a boy beaten to death for lying about reading some Bible verses — sadly, school officials alerted CPS to a potential problem just hours before his death. Here’s a child sex abuse case. And the latest, a baby dead after having been removed with his 8 siblings from a home described as having “deplorable conditions.”
There’s a lot of finger pointing, a lot of shoulda-couldas. The fact remains that CPS — and the police — have limited resources to do a Herculean job: keeping every child safe.
But you know what? Every time some busy-body calls the cops or the CPS for a false abuse charge, or a kid or pre-teen left in a car for 5 minutes while mom runs a quick errand, or a kid merely being outside without direct adult supervision? The cops and CPS workers pushing that paperwork can’t spend that time investigating a real case of neglect or abuse. The end result is more kids hurt and more kids killed.
Even though the stats say people read this little site regularly, the fact is not many people comment. One of the few people who I’d call a “regular commenter” was Cynthia.
It is with great sadness that I must report that Cynthia passed away this morning. She leaves behind a long-term boyfriend, assorted distant relatives, a grandson, and one daughter. That would be me.
In Closing:rubble bucket challenge; an interesting and relevant graph; on inequality and impounded cars; copcams; one less one less problem; Karl calls ’em as he sees ’em; shhh, ancient oligarch secret; and thanks to bankruptcy “reform,” there is no hope of this getting better until the previous item miraculously vanishes; I still wonder why insurance companies haven’t put their considerable clout behind this; and won’t somebody please think of the children (unless of course they are brown).
When Kids are Smarter than the Adults: Apparently, being accused of twirling a pencil with a pencap on it is a problem that is best addressed by a 5 hour interrogation evaluation, including a strip search and blood testing. No idea whether anybody thought it would be a good idea to call mom or dad. Elsewhere — and I would totally like to believe this is an April Fools joke except that here’s local coverage including an interview — police responded to a couple of kids building a tree fort with guns drawn. The child’s reaction was “I was thinking that I don’t want to be shot today, so I just listened to what they said.”
Tired of LinkedIn?: It was a pain in the butt to figure out how to close an account, so let me save you some effort.