Friday, September 4, 2009

Good by

The truly sad thing about getting old is seeing the things you grew up with disappear. From “church keys” to pay phones, big things or small, the things we take for granted just disappear. If you don’t know a “church key” is a bottle opener and pay phones aren’t economical any more because of cell phones. New technology has forced many things to disappear, lack of interest has been the death of others, and lack of funding has killed the rest.

The Michigan State Fair is about to become the next victim. After 161 years the longest running State Fair in the country is seeing its last year, when it ends on Labor Day it will truly end. Founded in 1849 it is a victim of the economy. The Governor says the State can no longer afford to fund it.

At a time when fairs and local festivals are propping up the business community of the State, it’s a shame to see it go. One wonders if it is a sign of things to come. How many county fairs and local festivals are going to dry up and blow away? We are a tourist state and without things to draw people here they and their money won’t come.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


I’ve been reading all about the health care debate. Turn on the news and it seems like that’s all you hear about. Should we have a government option, or should it all be private insurance programs? Should there be a choice for the underinsured and uninsured and what about those who don’t have an employer backed plan? What do you do if you are losing your job and your insurance or can’t afford to buy any even if you are working?

I find myself caught in the middle, to young for Medicare and dependent on my wife’s insurance at work. Her health and mine are both shaky at best so what do we do if she can’t do her job any longer? If we don’t have “good” coverage how are we going to afford to see our doctor or buy any medications that we need? If you’re poor enough or old enough you can get Medicare or Medicaid so why not an option for those who are not? There is no question that the system is broken, or that it is unfairly weighted tin favor of those who have good jobs or are more affluent. Lord knows that the government is great at screwing things up, but the system is not fixing itself so what should we do?

There are no easy answers, but right now it all boils down to “how is it going to affect me?” Are we going to have insurance, should my wife keep working at a job that she is leaves her in pain from standing at a machine all day just because we need the medical coverage? Good or bad I would at least like a choice that would allow us some options and if it’s a government backed one so be it.