Some things that really BURN MY ASS!
MAYOR BLOOMBERG'S QUEST FOR WORLD DOMINATION
In some ways, NYC Mayor Bloomberg is ok. He's managed to carry on the fine work of Rudy Giuliani, his illustrious predecessor, by keeping the streets of NYC relatively safe and user (and tourist) friendly. However:
I don't like the smoking ban, because...well.,,I'm a smoker. In fact, I think Bloomberg used to be a smoker as well. I also heard tell that he did smoke pot at one point, and DID inhale, and did enjoy it. Keep in mind my disclaimer above; this may only be one of those urban legends. Now there's a push for banning smoking in public housing projects. Can you spell (or smell) 1984?
I loathe his insane push for a West Side Stadium. This scheme involves mucho dollars in tax money, again as far as I know, chiefly in his bid to see the Olympics hosted by our city. Who ever heard of building a stadium for the Olympics without knowing if you're going to host the games? And who's paying for all those commercials touting the stadium, and who's paying for all the little Olympic sticker emblems I see on every subway car, even though many of the subway stations are disgracefully in need of repair, and many token booth clerks are being eliminated altogether, replaced by vending machines?
Bloomberg's bid for a Manhattan stadium was shot down, so now he's trying for one in Queens. There are plans abroad for new stadiums for the Yankees and the Mets. All very well and good, I guess, though I don't see the purpose. If it's coming out of my tax dollars, I don't like this shit one bit.
The fact that this guy is a multi-billionaire but uses his wealth for ad campaigns for the upcoming election, but as far as I know does not donate money for the city, makes me madder than hell. As BG said, he could be a major player in the NYC history books if he parted with some of his own cash to help the city by, say, building a West Side Stadium with his own funds--although I think there are plenty of other more worthy projects he could contribute his dinero to.
The founder of WalMart just passed away the other day. He was I think the fifth wealthiest man in the country, but like other zillioinaire assholes, he had to tempt fate by riding around in some little jerryrigged glider plane. I heard tell from BG that he allegedy was super cheap. So what did all that money get him in the end? Maybe he willed some of it to worthy causes, but if not, what was it all for? Something for Bloomberg to contemplate, perhaps?
CITY AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENT MISMANAGEMENT AND MALFEASANCE
A new contract has been established for NYC police that will substantially lower officer's starting salaries to a disgraceful level. Since recruitment is allegedly down, why in heaven's name would they pull such a stunt? On a positive note, veterans of the force are in for a very nice pay raise. But still.
There's an old library a few blocks away from BG's working class Bronx neighborhood. Across the street, they are constructing a brand new, shiny, fancy library. Again, very nice. But there is talk that unless there is a push for continued funding of the libraries at least up to par with what we have now, they may actually cut library service by several days a week. I would rather see the old library stand as is than a fancy new one that's only open three times a week instead of six. Many kids in this neighborhood cannot afford computers, and need these libraries to study and learn. It is a disgrace that one of the few eductional resources open to the poor in this city may be taken from them.
THE AA PANDEMIC
In several posts, such as AA: Threat or Menace?>, I've told about my experiences with the AA fellowship. I think it works beautifully for some, but not for all. Nevertheless, I think that despite its supposed non-profit status, there is a very very profitable AA-allied industry in this country which may be seriously impeding possible alternate modes of treatment.
First off, I have heard talk of a medication that can help alcoholics in their quest to stay sober. It has apparently been available in Europe for some time. Recently it finally received FDA approval. But no one knows about it, and I think I know why.
I believe the drug companies cannot make a lot of money off this particular medication; perhaps because it originated overseas. Secondly, the whole idea of a pill that can help alleviate addiction is anathema to the AA philosophy.
Money is being poured into the coffers of many via the myriad AA-inspired substance abuse institutions and programs such as those affiliated with rehabs, hospitals, employee assistance programs, prisons, etc. etc. One thing they all have in common is their adherence to the twelve step approach. Insurance companies give much more generous coverage for employees and others for rehabs than they do for mental illness inpatient and outpatient coverage. There is simply no other condoned model in this country for addicton recovery.
THE REPUBLICAN RIGHT
Some of this has been covered in Always Wear your Party Hat regarding contraception and abortion. In addition, despite the current war, resulting in the death of many American soldiers (as well as Iraqui civilians), I feel that vets get the short end of the stick in this country.
BG is an honorably discharged vet. There have been rumors of the Manhattan VA being closed or else converted to a solely outpatient facility. The wonderful art therapy program he loved has practically dried up altogether. Services are sometimes good, sometimes horrible. BG was literally almost killed several times by incompetent doctors and other health care "professionals" at the VA. Is this any way to treat our vets, especially with the gung ho attitude of Bush et al about the war?
I am also concerned about the push to reduce funding for the already limited Section 8 housing program, which helps assist low income individuals and families to find decent, affordable housing with the help of federal rent subsidies. Not to mention the whole social security debate/debacle.
Plus the whole Republican love affair with already filthy-rich individuals and corporations, and their complicity in sheltering them from their rightful tax burden.
SCARY SHRINKS FROM THE BOWELS OF HELL!! AND OTHER ASSHOLES
I'm mad as hell as all the truly sick, demento shrinks out there who abuse vulnerable patients. BG's story is especially horrific, and I will post his travails with the mental health industry soon.
I am also miffed, to put it mildly, at the continuing shame, stigma, and ignorance associated with mental illness in this day and age. Not to mention the shameful media sterotypes like those found on crime dramas such as Law and Order and NYPD Blue. I love these shows, but to watch them you would think that all mentally ill people are babbling dementos who refuse to take their meds (which are, of course, some cure all wonder drug) and subseqently make a hobby out of pushing people in front of incoming subway cars. More on this in another post.
That's it for now. Now I want to hear from YOU!!!