Saturday, 5 August 2017

By on August 5th, 2017 in personal, prepping

09:36 – It was 61.7F (16.5C) when I took Colin out at 0630, clear and breezy. The little dog was nowhere to be seen, although she did show up shortly after we came back in the house.

Barbara commented yesterday that she seemed kind of thin and scraggly when she saw her, when she arrived in our front yard in company with a beagle. She also noticed that she’s a girl and has her adult teeth.

I’m afraid she’s been abandoned and is scavenging/hunting. She’s a sweet little dog, and I hate to see that. I’ve given her a couple of little dog treats, figuring every little bit helps. We’re going to keep an eye on her over the weekend. If we don’t find out where she belongs by Monday, I feel that we need to do something, even if it comes to feeding her. I don’t like to see a dog suffer. It abrogates the deal humans have had with dogs for 40,000 years.

Which kind of relates to an email I got from someone who was going through the list of antibiotics I posted. He wanted to know if any of them had activity against worms and other parasites, and if not what he should be stocking.

With the usual disclaimer that I’m neither a physician nor a pharmacist and can’t offer medical advice, the short answer is no. Metronidazole is useful against giardia and some similar parasites but is not an antihelminthic.

For that, my first and second choices would be mebendazole and albendazole. Unfortunately, both require a prescription and are pretty expensive, at least in the US. My next choice would be pyrantel pamoate.

It’s widely available as an OTC drug under various names, notably Reese’s Pinworm Medicine. You can buy it at Walmart or Amazon. One ounce of the 50mg/mL suspension sells for $7 or $8, and is roughly two adult doses. Or you can buy bulk generic stuff for roughly a buck an ounce in 32-ounce bottles, which is roughly 60 adult doses. It’s effective against pinworms, hookworms, and roundworms. The weird thing about this product is that it’s intended for human use, but is purchased at least as often for treating pets and livestock.

IIRC, a normal course of treatment is one dose to kill the live worms, followed by a second dose a week or ten days later to kill any newly-hatched worms. A 32-ounce bottle provides a varying number of courses, depending on the weight of the patient. For small children, the dosage is 1/2 to 1 teaspoon (2.5 to 5 mL), which means the bottle contains 90+ to 180 courses. For large adults, the normal dosage is 4 teaspoons (20 mL), so the bottle contains about 24 courses.


Have I mentioned that I love living in Sparta? We just got the bill from Shaw Brothers for fixing the septic tank mess. I cringed as Barbara opened the envelope, expecting a bill for $3,000 or $4,000. It was $875, total. Of that, $350 went to the septic tank service for pumping out the tank. In Winston-Salem, ISTR, it costs $300+ per hour just to rent the excavator they used.

66 Comments and discussion on "Saturday, 5 August 2017"

  1. Greg Norton says:

    In Austin, the cost of a major repair doesn’t bother me nearly as much as the increasingly third world work standards. I can see the upside of closed shop states where the trades must have union cards.

    We have numbers to decent plumbing and A/C service. Anything else is just a cr*pshoot, including our recent roof repair — other than invoices, the contractor avoids me.

  2. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Incidentally, when I say that mebendazole and albendazole are “pretty expensive” I’m talking about $300 to $450 PER DOSE. For generic drugs that are out of patent. Even if you have good health insurance, a course of treatment may cost you $250 or more out of pocket.

    Overseas, one dose of either costs literally pennies. In 2010, they were both selling in the US for a few dollars per dose. Then a weasel company bought the rights and started increasing the prices dramatically. I wish I believed in Hell, because people like that deserve to go there.

  3. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    “increasingly third world work standards”

    Another upside to small-town/rural life. Around here, everyone does good work, simply because they can’t afford not to. It’s all word of mouth, and someone who doesn’t do good work soon finds himself out of business.

    In the big city, you can choose among hundreds or thousands of contractors to do a particular job. They don’t have to worry about word of mouth because there’ll always be another ignorant customer coming along.

  4. medium wave says:

    Speaking of weasels: Martin Shkreli convicted of securities fraud, conspiracy

  5. Nick Flandrey says:

    I’ve finally used some of the things in my travel bag. Will have more to say when I have a keyboard, but…

    Used the towel, foot blister repair, church key, bandaids, rain jacket, and protein bar. May get to stash some things here…..

    N

    Added binos too

  6. Greg Norton says:

    Another upside to small-town/rural life. Around here, everyone does good work, simply because they can’t afford not to. It’s all word of mouth, and someone who doesn’t do good work soon finds himself out of business.

    It will be a while before we try a small town again. We’ve noted that my participation in the labor force directly affects how my wife is treated on her job, and I do better in medium-large metros.

  7. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    “We’ve noted that my participation in the labor force directly affects how my wife is treated on her job, and I do better in medium-large metros.”

    Eh? How so?

  8. Nick Flandrey says:

    Maybe like me, people judge wife negatively ‘cuz I’m not working?

    N

    Although this is getting better as more of my peers join me….

  9. MrAtoz says:

    Maybe like me, people judge wife negatively ‘cuz I’m not working?

    lol! I “don’t work either”, but I bet the both of us work harder than the typical derp out there.

  10. CowboySlim says:

    @RBT
    Many of us here use the NEXTDOOR.COM for local communications such as lost and found pets:
    https://calclassicsprestige.nextdoor.com/news_feed/?lc=335&toc_section=posts&is=de&mobile_deeplink_data=action%3Dview_post%26post%3D59001831&s=de&link_source_user_id=17959289&toc=1&post=59001831&ct=wE34weIgkXQ_WSZiG6ZHCuiz376WnbTshKVZcLOPCrl3p4SKDo8zBtmnIqixjsE5

    Perhaps there are folks in your area who do likewise. I just don’t know how widespread it is.

    As an ASPCA member and contributor, I suggest feeding the dog:
    https://secure.aspca.org/take-action/giving-day?ms=em_eng_giving-day-contest-20170801&initialms=em_eng_giving-day-contest-20170801&utm_source=engagementemail_201708&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=engagement&eml_name=2017.08.01%20Giving%20Day%20User%20Story%20Contest%20(FINAL%20SEND)%20remainder&eml_id=11609980&spMailingID=11609980&spUserID=MTc2NzAxOTc3MTIzS0&spJobID=1220162250&spReportId=MTIyMDE2MjI1MAS2

    You might check for implanted identity chip. We have been doing this to our Boston Terriers since it has become available.

    Also, if the dog is truly lost, I would expect that responsible owners would have contacted the local pet agency.

  11. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Coincidentally, I got an invitation yesterday to join Nextdoor.com. I checked, and the person inviting me was apparently from the Charlotte area, which is a long way from here. I may check further.

  12. DadCooks says:

    Another day of the same and more extreme heat and heavy smoke here in SE WA State. “They” are saying this is a record stretch of 100-degrees plus and the worst, densest, and longest lasting smoke. I can’t imagine how bad the fores are in BC. No relief in sight.

    20-years ago we used to be somewhat of a small town here in the Tri-Cities WA. All the repair people were long-time family operations. You could trust them all and they cooperated. If your usual company was busy they would send someone they could trust. A great cooperative and symbiotic relationship. That is no more. Fortunately since we have used the “ol’ folks” forever we can still get great service.

  13. Rod Schaffter says:

    The top of our septic tank is only about 18″ below grade, so I have a flower bed atop one of the big lids for our tank, with a couple of big rocks atop it for volume, and the rest of the hole filled with bark mulch. Before Larry Favreau, our septic tank guy comes, I lift the rocks out and scoop out the mulch and then replace it with fresh mulch when he’s done. We get ours pumped every 18 months, as we have six in our Family..

  14. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I thought about doing something like that, but there’s only maybe 18″ of dirt on top of our tank. The real problem was finding out where exactly the tank was. (To the center of the near lid it’s 14’2″ from the SW corner of the house on a direct line with the west wall of the house.)

  15. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    So I signed up for nextdoor.com, kind of.

    Before it would let me do anything it required my street address and email address, which I provided. The latter is public record and the former is well-known since it’s been in use since 1994.

    On the next page I became concerned about its proginess, since it asked me for my sex: male, female or “other”. I checked male, even though I’d thought seriously about specifying other.

    It then welcomed me and said I was the only person near my location, so it was up to me to invite neighbors and make them welcome. So I closed my browser without responding.

  16. Greg Norton says:

    Maybe like me, people judge wife negatively ‘cuz I’m not working?

    When I wasn’t working, my wife’s jobs tended to squeeze us financially on the premise that we had very little recourse. Physician employment changes always involve “tail” malpractice insurance coverage, figure about $2500 per year on the job for GP, and her current position requires a flat $10,000 payment for anything less than six months’ notice (pretty typical contract post-Doh-bamacare).

    Since I went back to work and picked up a second set of health benefits as well as income from a position at a company well known in the community for stability, the attitude from my wife’s current clinic is night and day.

  17. Greg Norton says:

    “We’ve noted that my participation in the labor force directly affects how my wife is treated on her job, and I do better in medium-large metros.”

    Eh? How so?

    I’m pushing 50, I’ve had to start my IT career over, and I’m not entrepreneurial. My options are limited in a small town for now. Maybe we’ll try again when we get the kids out of the house and I’ve built skills in a new area of CS.

  18. OFD says:

    Hmmmm….I wonder if that’s what’s been going on with my wife’s asshole employers down in Mordor these past four years…assuming anyone there discovered that I’d been laid off by IBM and found nothing lasting since. They’ve now come out and told her and her colleagues, regardless of seniority and merit, that they’re just “vendors.” And another guy told her personally that she is just a “hired gun.”

    Wife started with them at the beginning and helped them build it to where it is today, a multimillion-dollar nonproft on K Street whose CEO pulls down a million a year now, but they never replaced the grand per gig that they cut from my wife and her colleagues seven years ago when they were struggling. Also, no direct deposit except for themselves still, and she continues having to pay for her accommodations and car rentals in advance and then be reimbursed weeks later. She’s had to tell them several times that if they didn’t FedEx Overnight her check she wouldn’t be able to go to the next assignment. And we’ve also had to use my entire SS and VA checks several times to cover that.

    Why doesn’t she go into biz for herself? She’s 62, and the material she uses for the classes is copyrighted, plus having to sign a non-competitive clause. (working without a contract for years at a time, too). She’d basically have to start from scratch and put in 50-60 hours/week to even get something like that off the ground and then have to make 100% of her travel and logistics arrangements herself. Pretty much fed up and burned out now and wants to cut down to one gig a month once Princess is done with her seven-year BA this coming academic year, and then quit entirely in three or four more years.

    By then, I’d hopefully be working full-time again in a whole different field for a few more years, and shortly after that, we’ll both be dead, I’m guessing. Or doddering old fossils holding off swarms of refugee revenants with our shotguns.

    Back from the gun store in Waterbury; I didn’t even stop; no place to park along U.S. Route 2 there, and it was a monsoon pouring down and I wasn’t about to hobble half a mile in that; also don’t do crowds, period. Or wish to be photographed or recorded by any Fed informers in the crowd. I’ll catch up with my guy later this next week at the usual meeting.

  19. lynn says:

    Overseas, one dose of either costs literally pennies. In 2010, they were both selling in the US for a few dollars per dose. Then a weasel company bought the rights and started increasing the prices dramatically. I wish I believed in Hell, because people like that deserve to go there.

    I thought that you were an anarchian ? This is the way that anarchy works. No controls, no overriding legal authority.

    BTW, I agree with you.

    I really hate to governmentalize 20% of the USA economy, our healthcare sector. But, I see no alternative at this point. The healthcare sector is the victim of its own success.

    Is governmentalize a word ? Why, yes. It means to nationalize.
    https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/governmentalize

  20. DadCooks says:

    Well our air quality has gone from unhealthy to very unhealthy for everyone, not just those considered “sensitive” (those with asthma, lung, and heart diseases). The “authorities” are recommending N95 masks for everyone venturing outside. I have a good supply of N95s and I have had the wife wearing them for the last 3-days.

    WRT nextdoor.com:
    I tried to get it going in my neighborhood about a year ago. Like @RBT most felt that it was too intrusive. A group of us do have a phone tree now.

  21. CowboySlim says:

    “Coincidentally, I got an invitation yesterday to join Nextdoor.com. I checked, and the person inviting me was apparently from the Charlotte area, which is a long way from here. I may check further.”

    Yes, amazingly coincidental. I am not surprised about the sparsity in your locale.

  22. OFD says:

    Peeps here put pics up on store bulletin boards and will also go door-to-door looking for their pets.

    I’m pretty sure there’s some kind of local VT online bulletin board thing but last time I might have looked at it, it was full of libtards and progs yakking their usual bullshit.

  23. lynn says:

    Many of us here use the NEXTDOOR.COM for local communications such as lost and found pets:

    I am on the local nextdoor.com board for our suburban area (about a mile in diameter). It is a huge time waster and is the neighborhood gossip board. About 1/3rd of the messages are about loose dogs. We do talk about good contractors occasionally.

  24. SteveF says:

    And another third are about loose women: “Did you see what that floozie was wearing! I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing that!”

    I’m not familiar with nextdoor, but did see a couple similar systems, years ago. It was a place for bored, middle-aged women to gossip when getting up and walking to their neighbor’s house was too much effort.

  25. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    “I thought that you were an anarchian ? This is the way that anarchy works. No controls, no overriding legal authority.”

    They can get away with this BECAUSE of the government. In a free market (a synonym for anarchy, BTW) market forces would compel their price to asymptotically approach their actual cost to produce and distribute the product. Rent-seekers like them depend on the government to assure their unearned profits.

    Most people seem to think that anarchy is a synonym for chaos. It’s not. Far from it. The unstated and usually unconscious assumption of these illiterates is that absence of government == chaos. It doesn’t. As anyone paying attention must realize, the converse is true.

  26. Greg Norton says:

    Hmmmm….I wonder if that’s what’s been going on with my wife’s asshole employers down in Mordor these past four years…assuming anyone there discovered that I’d been laid off by IBM and found nothing lasting since. They’ve now come out and told her and her colleagues, regardless of seniority and merit, that they’re just “vendors.” And another guy told her personally that she is just a “hired gun.”

    To them, the world doesn’t exist outside Mordor. Your employment status wouldn’t matter with that crowd unless you were working inside the beltway.

    Why doesn’t she go into biz for herself? She’s 62, and the material she uses for the classes is copyrighted, plus having to sign a non-competitive clause.

    Enforcement of the non-compete clause varies from state to state. Ironically, Texas is one of the toughest states to get out from under a clause while enforcement in CA is non-existent under laws going back to Gold Rush days.

    Intel is the direct result of two separate “F*ck You” events from the CA-based principals to William Shockley and, later, Fairchild Camera & Instrument.

    Copyright, unfortunately, is Federal. Use the thesis as an excuse to learn the tools and tricks of producing presentations beyond PowerPoint slides, and make the materials “in house”. Literally. Put Princess to work too.

  27. lynn says:

    They can get away with this BECAUSE of the government. In a free market (a synonym for anarchy, BTW) market forces would compel their price to asymptotically approach their actual cost to produce and distribute the product. Rent-seekers like them depend on the government to assure their unearned profits.

    I still disagree. The company has chosen to sell 1,000 pills per month instead of 100,000 pills per month (or some weird numbers like that). I don’t understand their philosophy because sooner or later the new CEO is going to get a cattle prod up his rump from an angry relative or an angry prison guard. This is not rational behavior to focus the amount of hate and discontent on themselves that they are getting.

    People sell stuff all the time for a million bucks that cost them a buck to produce. That is the free market.

    BTW, I am not sure that Medicare as implemented is a single payer system. Too many suppliers are working outside the system nowadays. Medicare is just a huge price control system. But, apparently they cannot force ERs to be a part of Medicare as even the Medicare users are complaining about obscene prices coming out of the new folks running our local ER. Medicare pays their reasonable and customary amounts and the people get bills for tens of thousands of dollars.

  28. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    No. Those two drugs are being sold under a GOVERNMENT-GRANTED MONOPOLY. That’s as far from a free market as it’s possible to get.

  29. lynn says:

    No. Those two drugs are being sold under a GOVERNMENT-GRANTED MONOPOLY. That’s as far from a free market as it’s possible to get.

    Ah, you are talking about the patent system. Yes, that does need to be addressed.

  30. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Eliminated.

  31. Ray Thompson says:

    Well our air quality has gone from unhealthy to very unhealthy for everyone, not just those considered “sensitive”

    When I lived in Southern Oregon (15 miles outside of Rogue River) there was a large forest fire in the hills surrounding our place. Forest service used our irrigation pump to fill their trucks. I don’t know if my uncle got compensated but knowing him he would have declined.

    Anyway it was incredible how thick the smoke became. It was difficult to see beyond about 100 yards. We could not see from our house to the lower end of the property where the creek and pump was situated. Did not wear any masks because no one did during those years. Breathed all the crap, coughed a lot, and just went on with our work for a couple of days. Then we finally started wetting towels and wrapping those around our face for the next several days.

    Medicare pays their reasonable and customary amounts and the people get bills for tens of thousands of dollars.

    I believe if the hospital accepts Medicare the patient is only responsible for 20% that Medicare does not pay. Hospital bills $10,000, pays $4,000, patient is only responsible for $800.

    I fought this battle with a hospital when I had private insurance. The hospital billed me for what the insurance did not pay, the full hospital amount, not the insurance adjusted amount. The hospital knows they are not supposed to do this type of billing but they do it anyway. They are hoping the patient does not know the rules and will just pay the amount.

    I also had the hospital bill me $250.00 for a video of a surgery my wife had. Insurance denied the payment so the hospital billed me for the full amount. Since it was a video, that I was supposed to pay for, I asked the hospital for the video. The hospital said no, the video was for their protection. I told them fine, if it is for your protection, and I cannot get the video, then I am not paying. The hospital removed the charge. But I have to wonder how many people went ahead and paid.

  32. H. Combs says:

    I had a similar experience with a hospital. My wife had cancer surgery and a year later we were moving out of state so I requested her files and X-rays. The hospital charged me for copying the medical records, and then refused to give me the X-rays. I visited the hospital with my billing in hand, demanding the x-rays. I showed them that I had paid for the x-rays. They said NO. So standing at the administrators desk I asked to borrow his phone and called the police filing a complaint of theft. Once the police came in, everything changed, and I had the x-rays the next day.

  33. lynn says:

    I believe if the hospital accepts Medicare the patient is only responsible for 20% that Medicare does not pay.

    The ER in our big hospital (1,200 beds) has split from the hospital. The ER does not take Medicare anymore. In fact, they do not take any health insurance whatsoever. They are still in the same building with the hospital though.

  34. lynn says:

    “Savage: Civil War If Trump Taken Down”
    https://www.infowars.com/savage-civil-war-if-trump-taken-down/

    “Millions of Americans will revolt if the globalists remove President Trump from office or render him powerless, radio host Michael Savage warned.”

    It is nice to know that I am not the only crazy person in the USA.

    Hat tip to:
    http://drudgereport.com/

  35. OFD says:

    WRT to civil war if tRump gets taken down and/or out: I doubt it. They’ll have a ready substitute, probably Pence, and he’ll be a good wittle doggie and do what they tell him and ask how high to jump. He’s already gone over to the “Ukraine” and poked the Russians hard in the eye and can be counted on for much more of that sort of thing. tRump might actually question it and be hesitant to do shit like that.

    Make no mistake: the neocons (Trotskyites) want more war, and especially want it with the Iranians and Russians. And they support and probably take their marching orders from Israel’s Likud Party. If to do that they need to get rid of tRump, they’ll find a way in this next six months to a year. And most Murkan derps will sit still for that, too. Lotta grumbling, but the MSM will cooperate fully, just like Pravda and Izvestia used to do. The Dems (Evil Half of the Party) will be overjoyed, as will the RINOs, and new roles will be found for Cankles and Princess Chelsea.

    IMHO, tRump needs to reel in a few more suckers, dump a couple more saboteurs, among them his SIL and apostate daughter, and then go into full attack mode, being utterly RUTHLESS. I dunno, maybe he has a better and slicker plan, way up above my crappy pay grade; let’s hope so.

    To get the mass of pissed-off Murkan derps riled enough to rise up, it will probably take some as yet unknown trigger or Black Swan event. Could be really small, too. May have already happened and we’re seeing a swelling of the focused rage necessary.

  36. OFD says:

    Yo, scientists and engineers and other experts here; are we being jazzed by this stuff?

    http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/retired-green-beret-warns-north-korea-can-deliver-a-warhead-containing-an-emp-weapon-dead-center-over-the-continental-united-states_08032017

    Is it like unto Orwell’s 1984 endless wars with different atrocities reported and retaliations every month in the State-controlled media? Or is it in fact plausible?

  37. SteveF says:

    I’m pretty sure the Nork EMP threat is grossly overstated. There’s no sign I’ve seen that they have a missile that can hit Nebraska, let alone still be 50 miles up over Nebraska. Also, as RBT said just the other day, there’s no sign that the Norks have a launchable nuclear weapon at all, let alone the specialized design needed for a continental EMP. Furthermore, the Norks have had reliability problems with their nukes, and that’s with carefully placing them, or even assembling them, in tunnels under mountains. A design rugged enough to stand up to an ICBM launch is different and much more difficult.

    Summary: Kim Young Goon is talking big in order to get attention or concessions. The US media and politicians are constantly talking up the threat through ignorance and fear, or for reasons of their own, none of which are likely to be for our benefit.

    Caveats: plenty. The state of the art has changed since I knew anything about nukes and it’s possible that widespread EMP can be kicked off more easily than previously thought. It’s possible the Norks have a Nebraska-capable ICBM that I hadn’t heard about; I haven’t been paying any particular attention. It’s possible that the Norks’ reliability problems were caused by sabotage rather than growing pains, and they’ve found the problems and can now build a multistage, launchable weapon with a good chance of success. I believe all of those possibilities to be low, especially that last, but I could be wrong.

  38. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    They can’t. If they could, they already would have.

  39. Ray Thompson says:

    The ER does not take Medicare anymore

    Another scam is ER doctors at those facilities that take insurance, especially private insurance networks.

    Go to the ER, ER is part of the network and charges network negotiated rates. But the ER doctor is not part of the network. You have no choice of DR when you go to the ER. Insurance company will now only pay out of network rates which generally means the insurance covers nothing. And the DR charges an exorbitant amount, well, because they can. See a DR for 5 minutes, total charge almost $2K, and you are on the hook for that amount.

    I fought that with the insurance company stating that I used an in network hospital and insurance should cover at the in network rates. I eventually threatened to file with the state insurance regulators claiming insurance fraud. The insurance covered at in network rates. I suspect it was cheaper than having to deal with the state.

    And speaking of state insurance boards. When I was hit by the car that was high on drugs his insurance company was located in GA, I live in TN. His insurance company was not returning calls and basically not paying. Called the TN state insurance regulators to ask for assistance. They refused saying the company was in GA and they had no authority. Called the GA state insurance regulators and they would not help because I lived in TN and the accident was in TN. At the end of both phone calls I told the person on the phone they were worthless and were just drawing a check at taxpayers expense for doing nothing.

    I was basically on my own and had to deal with my insurance company. Had to pay my deductible by filing under collision which also caused a claim on my record thus affecting my rates. My insurance company tried going after his insurance company but was unsuccessful as his insurance refused to cooperate.

    But since it was a DUI, he was ruled 100% at fault by the state trooper, he was responsible for anything insurance did not cover. I made damn sure to get every dime I could. iPad had minor damage and I had AppleCare+ so cost would have only been $50.00 to replace. But I got Apple to give a repair cost of full replacement and presented that document. Enforced by a judge’s ruling. First check was late and I contacted the DA. DA informed his lawyer that if a check was not produced in 5 days his client was going to jail for contempt and possibly the lawyer. Got the check in two days, hand written by his attorney.

  40. Dave says:

    Overseas, one dose of either costs literally pennies. In 2010, they were both selling in the US for a few dollars per dose. Then a weasel company bought the rights and started increasing the prices dramatically. I wish I believed in Hell, because people like that deserve to go there.

    They’re both generic, some enterprising sort should build a factory and make it or import it from overseas. The reason some enterprising sort hasn’t done that is the government rules and regulations are so complex that it takes a ton of capital to do either.

  41. Greg Norton says:

    Go to the ER, ER is part of the network and charges network negotiated rates. But the ER doctor is not part of the network. You have no choice of DR when you go to the ER. Insurance company will now only pay out of network rates which generally means the insurance covers nothing. And the DR charges an exorbitant amount, well, because they can. See a DR for 5 minutes, total charge almost $2K, and you are on the hook for that amount.

    For 5-10 minutes? The doctor actually saw, maybe, $20-30 of the $2K, and that number is before taxes and other deductions from their paycheck.

    I have a lot of experience with making a household budget work with a GP as the only breadwinner in the modern medical era. I understand overhead of an ER, but medicine is also, IMHO, the last refuge of MBAs without any real world skills beyond the ability to pass those classes.

  42. Ray Thompson says:

    For 5-10 minutes? The doctor actually saw, maybe, $20-30 of the $2K

    The bill came from the doctor’s medical group, not from the hospital. I am surprised the amount that doctor receives would be that low.

    When the wife was in the hospital to have a hip replaced she had to spend three days in the hospital. Hospital only had private rooms, insurance would only pay for semi-private. The insurance company would not budge even though it was in my insurance plan. Did not matter to the insurance company that semi-private rooms just did not exist. I negotiated with the hospital to get that reduced. Even though I had maxed out my maximum out of pocket I still had to pay an additional amount for the room.

    Also had a doctor that had nothing to do with the wife’s surgery stick his head in the door and ask how she was doing. That was it. Less than 30 seconds. Got a bill from the doctor for “consultation” in the amount of $500.00 from his medical group. Of course he was not in network so insurance would not cover it. I refused to pay saying I did not authorize, nor consent, to the use of his services. His office dropped the charge after the word fraud was mentioned. But with 20 people in the joint replacement ward I wonder how many actually paid the charges (or their insurance paid).

  43. OFD says:

    Unfortunately, it appears that in order to avoid being badly defrauded by these shitbag crooks, we need to try to emulate Mr. Ray and bust their ballz as much as we can. So we’ll only be not-so-badly defrauded.

  44. lynn says:

    Go to the ER, ER is part of the network and charges network negotiated rates. But the ER doctor is not part of the network. You have no choice of DR when you go to the ER. Insurance company will now only pay out of network rates which generally means the insurance covers nothing.

    My one experience with this is that BCBS did pay in network rates for ALL of the ER charges. The person involved walked out of the ER 28 hours later with a $12,000 out of pocket bill. I have no idea what her total bill was but, whew !

    Reputedly 80% of the ERs in Houston metropolitan area are no longer affiliated with any insurance company, including Medicare.

  45. lynn says:

    I was basically on my own and had to deal with my insurance company. Had to pay my deductible by filing under collision which also caused a claim on my record thus affecting my rates. My insurance company tried going after his insurance company but was unsuccessful as his insurance refused to cooperate.

    I carry uninsured motorist insurance on all of our cars. That is a $250 deductible instead of a $1,000 deduictible and not a claim on my record for collision. I have used it once for a woman that ran a red light and turned left in front of me so I t-boned her in my custom built 1996 V8 Ford Explorer. $8K in damage, a rental Explorer for a month, and I payed only $250. I immediately traded the repaired Explorer for a 1999 Ford Expedition. Too much damage, both radiators, new hood, new front fenders, new front axle, etc, etc, etc.

    Reputedly, 30% of the drivers in Texas do not have insurance and cause 50% of the wrecks. My youngest brother is one of the uninsured drivers. He does not even have a driver’s license. I have no idea (and do not want to know) how many wrecks he has caused.

  46. Ray Thompson says:

    That is a $250 deductible instead of a $1,000 deduictible and not a claim on my record for collision

    That may vary by state or insurance carrier. In my case I could not file under uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist. The catch was he had insurance, his insurance company was just not responding and refusing to pay. Thus my insurance company ruled it was collision and not uninsured motorist and I had to pay the deductible.

    This same insurance company nickle and dimed me to death on the payout for my car. Seats slightly worn: -$250.00. A couple of door dings: -$250.00. Carpet pads worn: -$200.00 (new pads were only $80.00). Window tint: +50.00 even though the tint was $500.00 and I had receipts to prove it. Scrape on the right rear bumper: -$400.00 (even though it was not there before the accident) as it was a front end collision.

    Travelers insurance was the carrier. I dropped them upon the next renewal, vehicle, homeowners, boat, liability and camera rider. They called and asked why and I opened both barrels. They lost $300 a month in revenue as I voted with my feet.

    I probably screwed up in not getting another appraisal and dinging the other driver for the difference in what Travelers claimed was the value and another adjuster. Lesson learned.

    Reputedly, 30% of the drivers in Texas do not have insurance and cause 50% of the wrecks

    Probably about the same here, maybe higher. Had a guy that worked for me when I was at the Credit Union. Had had no insurance and did not plan to get any. I have know a few people that have gotten in accidents caused by the other driver who has no insurance.

    They pull their license and they just keep driving.

    try to emulate Mr. Ray and bust their ballz as much as we can

    You bet. Look everything over with a fine tooth comb. I asked for a detailed bill from the hospital showing every charge. Almost a dozen pages when the wife had the hip surgery. Hospital was not happy that I asked for the printout and wanted to know why. I simply told them it was to keep them from defrauding me and the insurance company. That got an angry stare.

  47. paul says:

    How does he pay for tags and inspection?

  48. lynn says:

    How does he pay for tags and inspection?

    You don’t need no stinking license tags or inspection !

    At least that is what he tells me.

  49. Ray Thompson says:

    How does he pay for tags and inspection?

    Do like people in TN do. Get insurance, get the tag, drop the insurance. You only pay for a couple of days. There is no inspection in most of TN so not an issue.

  50. lynn says:

    That may vary by state or insurance carrier. In my case I could not file under uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist. The catch was he had insurance, his insurance company was just not responding and refusing to pay. Thus my insurance company ruled it was collision and not uninsured motorist and I had to pay the deductible.

    This same insurance company nickle and dimed me to death on the payout for my car. Seats slightly worn: -$250.00. A couple of door dings: -$250.00. Carpet pads worn: -$200.00 (new pads were only $80.00). Window tint: +50.00 even though the tint was $500.00 and I had receipts to prove it. Scrape on the right rear bumper: -$400.00 (even though it was not there before the accident) as it was a front end collision.

    I advise Amica Insurance for cars and home. I wish that they wrote commercial insurance also. They are a mutual insurance company which seems to work better for me.
    http://www.amica.com/

  51. Ray Thompson says:

    I also changed to a mutual insurance group Celina Insurance. Premiums are $190.00 for the same coverage as Travelers, about $100 a month in savings. Unfortunately the boat insurance has to be carried by another carrier as Celina does not cover watercraft.

  52. OFD says:

    People in both MA and VT (two states where I’ve lived and worked, one of them as a LEO for years) can get busted repeatedly for DUI, have their licenses yanked, and keep driving anyway. This has been going on for decades; way back in the distant past some Boston tee-vee station did one of their “I-Team” investigations into this chit and set up in a Greater Boston courthouse parking lot. Every single multiple-DUI asshole who’d had their license pulled, came out and drove away like it was nothing.

    I’ve had ample time to consider this and trying to come up with a solution to keep these people from driving again and I finally came up with blinding them. Anyone got anything less drastic/better???

  53. DadCooks says:

    Chop off their legs and arms, after you blind them.

  54. OFD says:

    I said “less drastic/better,” sir. I’d considered the hands but they can just get taxpayer-financed prostheses, I’m sure. Blinding IMHO should suffice. Unless maybe some scientific/medical advances could scramble their brains/nervous systems to the extent that they’d permanently forget HOW to drive.

  55. DadCooks says:

    I was going for the “better”.

    Not that I have never had a drink, after all I was a Submarine Sailor and had a tradition/reputation to uphold. I never did drive after more than one beer, with a meal. I always got a cab or had someone who was sober who could drive. I also did my share of duty as the “designated driver”. It paid well and the “riders” had to clean my car inside and out the next day.

    I will not fill this space with stories of friends and family who have killed themselves while driving drunk. The only good thing is they never injured or killed anyone else, damn lucky but still hard on the family.

  56. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Geez, I remember one time in college being so drunk that I drove home with my girlfriend Karen hanging her head out the passenger-side window to watch the line on the edge of the road to make sure I stayed inside that line and my friend David doing the same from the back seat on the driver’s side. I drove home at probably 5 MPH. We didn’t get stopped.

    I drove because I wasn’t as drunk as either Karen or David.

  57. DadCooks says:

    Sea Story Memory:
    When I was in Nuke Power School, classroom, in Vallejo CA we had an ol’ Diesel Boat instructor (Master Chief Machinists Mate SS, 20+ year Veteran)) for Heat Transfer and Fluid Flow (HTFF) that he liked to call “Hot Thelma’s Fucking Fluids”. He was a great instructor, but an even better story teller. His favorite watering hole was the Horse and Cow in Vallejo CA. It was a Submariners’ bar, no others dare enter. Sadly it is now a family place suitable for snowflakes.

    Well CA had these things called Botts’ Dots (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Botts%27_dots) that defined the road lanes on highways and many streets in town. I am sure they were put there because the Master Chief always ended his stories with how he drove home using “sonar”, the sound of his tires hitting the Botts’ Dots.

    The Master Chief told his wild Sea Stories not to brag, but to illustrate how God watches over drunks and sailors (one in the same?) and that he was very lucky. He had given up his heavy drinking and insisted that we be careful and call him if we were ever having too much fun. He would be there to bring us home.

    BTW, there was an Enlisted Mans’ Club next to the Nuke Power School. Great lunches, $1 pitchers, and strippers. It was the spot we all went to for lunch. A great mid-day moral booster. But don’t show up to afternoon classes drunk or you’d be doing Field Day forever under the guidance of another Diesel Boat experienced Master Chief who used to be a Marine DI, the worst of all worlds.

  58. SteveF says:

    I’ve never driven drunk or even tipsy. I’ve mentioned having a lot of alcoholics in my family, and my first child was killed by a drunk driver. Kinda puts you off it.

    I have driven while absolutely reeking of booze, though, courtesy of drinks spilled on me. I got pulled over one time (speeding; I thought the limit was 40 on that road but it was 30 in that section. Speed trap? Put that thought out of your head!) and the cop thought he was doing me a big favor by not arresting me right there for DWI.

  59. dkreck says:

    I still drink but I don’t drink and drive. Uber and Lyft have changed everything. Cheap compared to fines. Even the one time I was stopped and arrested I got the case dropped after the lawyer had my blood sample retested. Still cost about $2k a beer and 5 months of bs to get there. They beat you up before you can be proven innocent.

  60. SteveF says:

    “The process is the punishment.”

  61. MrAtoz says:

    BTW, there was an Enlisted Mans’ Club next to the Nuke Power School. Great lunches, $1 pitchers, and strippers

    I entered the US Army in 1979. I attended the Officer Basic course for Air Defense Artillery at Ft. Bliss, TX (El Paso). The Officer’s Club had a strip bar in the lower level. A very popular place. Mid way through the course, the Commanding General’s wife convinced him strip clubs were decadent. The CG told the Garrison Commander to get rid of the club and the next week it was gone. No more cheap strippers from Mexico. A year later the Army ended all strip clubs on bases. Sigh. Ten years later and the Military in general expunged all girly mags from the PX/BX NavEx’s. Only Playboy ’cause of the “articles” remained.

  62. Miles_Teg says:

    Lynn wrote:

    “I carry uninsured motorist insurance on all of our cars.”

    In Oz most policies cover you if the other driver is uninsured if you can identify them.

  63. Miles_Teg says:

    Did all the strippers have fake boobs? Disgusting.

  64. Miles_Teg says:

    If I’ve have more than one beer/B&C I’m reluctant to drive. If I’ve had two I won’t. I was probably under the influence once in my life, after five Margaritas.

  65. Nick Flandrey says:

    Got away with lots of stuff I really don’t like to talk about anymore. Worth remembering that this was something almost everyone did to some extent.

    I’d be interested to see some stats and see if all the money effort and increase in the police state has made any measurable difference in dd deaths. I’d bet, without looking, that improvements in vehicle safety features and emergency response made a bigger difference than all the un- constitutional road blocks put together.

    N

  66. OFD says:

    What Mr. Nick said. +1,000

    I also got away with tons of stuff and no one getting hurt, thanks be to God, who apparently really does look after fools and drunks. Sometimes.

    I’m guessing also that Mr. Nick is right about the road and vehicle safety and EMS stuff being much more of a factor than the piratical MV stops and roadblocks.

    I wonder, though, how much other credit might go to the MADD and SADD people, enough so as to make DUI a major social taboo, for more people than would have otherwise been the case.

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