October 15th, 2007

dance centipedes vagina

Universal health care for everyone!

Come on. It'll be great. Everyone will have fabulous free health care and we'll all live until we're 200 and frolic through fields of wildflowers. Just look at the wonders of countries like the UK that adopted such a system. Sure, there might be lines for 'elective' services, but you get in there and get your important health care when you need to and it dosen't cost you so much as a penny. Well, as long as you ignore the fact that you end up paying for it thorugh taxes.

Oh, and there is that slight problem where you might have to end up paying more or pulling out your own teeth with pliers.

Brits resort to pulling own teeth

Six percent of those questioned in a survey of 5,000 patients admitted they had resorted to self-treatment using pliers and glue, the UK's Press Association reported.

England has a two-tier dental care system with some dentists offering publicly subsidized treatment through the National Health Service and others performing more expensive private work.

But more than three-quarters of those polled said they had been forced to pay for private treatment because they had been unable to find an NHS dentist. Almost a fifth said they had refused dental treatment because of the cost.

The scary thing is the survey was actually run by the NHS. It's probably about as cheery as the numbers can get given that. It's something to think about given all the crap we've seen with every democratic candidate coming out with their own insanities for universal health care initiatives. There might very well be a utopia somewhere down the line (ignoring the fact that utopia actually translates as "no place" in latin) but it's going to be a path of razorblades to get there.

I hear the health care system works well in places like the netherlands, but are you willing to pay taxes of up to 52% to receive it?
discworld fiery eye

Lessons from Limeyland

It's probably understating things to say that a person learns something new every day, but the one that will stick in my mind for today involves Conkers. I was reading CNN earlier today and out of curiosity clicked on a video linked entitled Bonkers over Conkers. It turns out that it's some sort of whacky Limey game that involves drilling holes in nuts and then bashing them against each other. If you smash someone else's nut apart with your nut, you win and gain a point. In case you're curious, you can find more information at the wikipedia page on the subject.

Now, usually I'd just go on with my day with nary more than a thought that the Limeys are weird but I had a flash of recognition. In one of the discworld books, Pratchett referenced conkers and I had never gotten it before. Vimes is walking along a street of the working poor while investigating a crime and thinking back to the games that the street kids would play. I don't recall the others off the top of my head but one of them was dead rat conkers. I gave it no thought at the time, just writing it off as some children's game I didn't get. Now I'm happily entertained by the idea of people trying to bash rats open with other rats. I guess it only counts if you manage to get one of them to split open and ooze.

It's the little joys that matter.
dance centipedes vagina

And I'll form, the head!

The Honda 14

Honda designers have come up with a clever way to get around "High Occupancy Vehicle" lane restrictions that they expect will still be around in 50 years.

The Honda 14, or One to the Power of Four, is Honda's concept for a solar powered hybrid robotic vehicle. It would allow commuters to use restricted HOV lanes, but as the vehicle nears its final destination, it would transform into four smaller cars to take occupants to their final destinations.

Molecular engineering would allow the individual vehicles to reshape depending on whether they were separated or combined into one or two.

Well, sure, but does it come with missiles, laser beams, and can you battle the forces of evil with it?
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