Latest Neat-o Advance from the Field of Medicine

vscan-stethoscopeI have always been amazed by how far medical science and technology has advanced in the space of the last decades and wrote a piece back in August illustrating how far medical technologies have progressed since the turn of the last century.  Training for a career serving the healthcare field is really exciting because it is a field that will definitely be home to continuing innovation and technological breakthroughs.   Take for instance the latest device dreamed up by the engineers at General Electric. Continue reading…

Following the Money Part Deux

follow-the-moneyBack in July, before the screaming town hall silliness of Congress’s August recess and before the slow as molasses delivery of Max Baucus’s Senate Finance Committee health care bill, I wrote a piece about how to gauge the progress of health insurance reform legislation.  I pointed out that insiders on Wall Street, who have paid for unfair access to our legislators, would know ahead of the curve which way the reform would go.  This way they could nearly guarantee that they would not lose money from their investments into the healthcare sector whether reform passed or was defeated.  If it looked like reform was imminent, Wall Street would sell their holdings in healthcare companies driving stock prices of insurers down.  If the “Street” figured reform would go down in defeat, they’d buy more of the insurers’ stocks as it would be a safe bet that the gravy train would continue for the highly profitable insurance companies.  Back in July, the prices of insurance company stocks were surging.  The bankers on Wall Street seemed convinced that the public option – the only serious reform device being considered – was all but dead.  What does the insurance sector look like today three months later and weeks from the bill’s eventual passage?  Follow me over the jump to see. Continue reading…

Investing In Green Energy

23493OK so I am DEFINITELY not the next Warren Buffett.  However, I feel pretty smart for having liquidated some poorly performing mutual funds in my 401k account about 5 months ago and using the money ($400) to invest in some 25 shares of General Electric (when it was at $3.56 a share) as well as 100 shares of AIG (when it was 44 cents a share).  I also bought 10 shares of a stem cell research company as I figured that was a sector sure to grow in the future.  Today, my $400 investment into these stocks is worth almost $2000, five short months later.  I bought these things at the bottom of the market when everyone had been selling furiously.  And it got me thinking about where the next “big” investment sector would be found.  I think green energy is it. Continue reading…

Why Job Training Is Essential

unemployment_officeIt may surprise you to learn that even as layoffs mount and unemployment has passed the 10% mark, there are employers who are having a hard time filling positions that pay $50,000 to $60,000 plus benefits!  How is this possible?  Join me after the jump to find out. Continue reading…

Seeger Plays Health Care Reform Rally in Nyack, NY

img_65171Last night, I attended a pro-reform rally at Memorial park in Nyack, New York along the banks of the Hudson in the shadow of the picturesque Tappan Zee Bridge.  Nearly 1000 people turned out to support reform of the broken healthcare system and several musical acts donated their performance to rally the crowd.  The top act was none other than the legendary proponent of social justice, Pete Seeger.  Follow me over the fold for more details about the evening’s events and photos taken by yours truly. Continue reading…

Obamas and Oprah Stump for Chi-Town Games

olympicsThis week, the President, his wife and Oprah Winfrey are making a trip to Copenhagen, Denmark to lobby the International Olympic Committee to bring the 2016 Summer Games to their shared hometown of Chicago.  This is the very first time a US president has personally lobbied the IOC for this purpose.  Continue reading…

Yet Another Reason to Love Online Education

kitties2It keeps your pooch or pootie from freaking out at “back to school” time.   According to Betsy Saul, founder of petfinder.com (link below the fold), back to school time frequently means empty houses once students return to classes and parents return to focus on work.   Man’s best friend can often feel left in the lurch and anxious.  Details over the fold. Continue reading…

Smoking Bans Credited with Lower Rates of Heart Attack

cigarettesI was living in California when the smoking ban went into effect there.  Smokers and barroom patrons were very upset about the law’s passage.  I recall, as a musician playing in many bars and clubs, the friction caused by this switch.  But folks got over it.  Then I moved back to New York and remember being incredulous that folks still smoked in the bars there, until the Empire State passed its own ban.  Then the wailing among bar goers began again.  And again, in time, folks got over it.  It seems all the friction was worth it in the end.  Follow me over the fold for the latest. Continue reading…

FactCheck.org:Another Great Resource

factchecklogoWith passions running so high in the healthcare debate, and with so many powerful forces trying to manipulate the process to suit their own agendas, it gets really hard to believe anything we hear.  How does one separate the truth from the lies, the policy positions from the propaganda, the facts from the noise?  Let me tell you of an excellent resource for cutting through the static and getting some answers from reputable sources.Continue reading…