Planned Obsolescence, The Stepchild Of Litigiousness - I always wanted to be a gastronomer Blog at - 251104

I always wanted to be a gastronomer

Planned Obsolescence, the stepchild of Litigiousness 
Sep. 21, 2011 3:11 pm 
Updated: Oct. 16, 2011 12:26 pm
I was talking to a friend of mine yesterday. He was driving his company car, a 2009 Nissan crossover of some kind. He rather likes the vehicle and in speaking directly about Nissans in general, I commented that I'd never own another one. That, because of the first new vehicle I ever owned which was a 1985 Nissan kingcab pickup. While new, it was an ok truck but within a year of the warranty running out, the damned thing started slowly but surely falling apart, first the engine, then the transmission, so on and so forth. Ultimately I spent $9000 on it new, and over $15000 on it over its lifetime just keeping the bleeding thing on the road.

It got me to thinking about planned obsolescence and just how good companies like Nissan, and General Electric and just about everyone have gotten at making certain that their products will last just long enough to escape the mantle of warranty responsibility. What the heck has happened to the days of simply making a product as good as you can, period. Did we just throw it under the bus of fiscal gains? Yes and no is the answer. On one hand, business is in the business of making money, some of it ethically and responsibly, some of it, not so much.

The better explanation would be litigiousness. Amerca has become the most tort happy civilization in the world and I'm thinking that the law of unintended consequences comes into play here. One of the direct results of companies being sued for making faulty merchandise is that the very same companies have had to pursue knowledge of exactly what their merchandise will do. Initially so that they can prevent mishap and avoid being sued while just trying to make a buck. The knowledge that companies have gained in this regard is a double edged sword. On one hand, they now know exactlly how a given product should perform and for how long and thats a good thing. On the other hand, they now know exactlly how a given product should perform and for how long. There was nothing except their own consciences to prevent any one of them from then using this information to insure that the products they sell give us exactly what they promised and not an inch more. All the better to insure we buy another just as soon as possible. The fact that corporate America likes to position itself three or 4 times removed from its conscience just made the whole exercise a wee bit more palateable. If it's really horiible, just divide it up into 20 easily justifiable portions.

So my Nissan? And your Toshiba? and your Whirlpool? Perhaps we bought and paid for the planned obsolescence of their products with every lawsuit brought against McDonalds for its 'hot' coffee. I had a neighbour, he died a couple of years ago hence the past tense. He owned a large treed tract of land right behind my house, 3 or 4 dense acres. When my kids were little, they discovered that Bobs land was a veritable treasure trove of treehouses and little forts etc...Years and years before my kids discovered Bobs back yard, other kids had discovered it and it became a traesure trove for hundreds of kids, dragging in discarded building materials. When Bob and I became friends, I became privy to how much Bob enjoyed having those children on his property and why he never subdivided it and sold it off. He loved those rickety buildings, the laughter and living that took place back there, so much so that Bob would scout garage sales and find bags of old tools and cans of nails etc and spirit them throughout the property for kids to find. Then early every morning he'd be out inspecting the latest builds making certain they weren't going to fall apart when the whole gang climbed up into a treehouse. The result of this is that hundreds of kids over the years have left their childhoods with fond memories of time spend on Bobs property.

That is of course until one kid fell and broke his leg. He wasn't the first who got injured on that property but he was the first who was the spawn of parents who thought that the broken leg was directly attributable to the 'gross negligence' of the lands owner. That incident and the lawsuit ended the use of that land for the pleasure of those kids. Bob simply couldn't afford it. The year after he had to spend thousands of dollars tearing out all of those constructs, he died in early retirement.

That story doesn't have so much to do with planned obsolescence as it does to the law of unintended consequences. Those, especially from ill founded torts.

What does all this have to do with AR and food? Not a darned thing, I just felt like writing something I was thinking about.
Sep. 21, 2011 3:24 pm
I totally agree with you about all of the above. I remember when things were built to last (unfortunately, I was a later model and am already falling apart at the seams) and I love the story of Bob. I think the parents that can't allow their kids to suffer some consequences of childhood without suing somebody should be horsewhipped, and I'm glad this didn't have anything to do with food. haha!
Sep. 21, 2011 3:36 pm
Rocketwoman, if I was to get one response to my wee flatulence of thought, yours would be the one I'd treasure most.
Sep. 21, 2011 3:41 pm
I, too, totally agree with everything you've said, Raedwulf. I thoroughly enjoyed the story of Bob...right up to the point where those idiot parents decided to sue him. I'd be willing to bet a year's paycheck those parents were perfectly happy to have their child trespassing on Bob's property, out of their hair, day in and day out before the injury occurred. How sad that such a wonderful place of laughter, living, and memories had to end on such a sour note.
Sep. 21, 2011 4:52 pm
Well said, Keri. I agree.
Sep. 21, 2011 5:01 pm
Randy Dude, I've got to take exception to your McD's reference. Several points. They'd already settled hundreds of hot coffee claims before this one. Their coffee was intentionally kept at a serving temp known to cause 2nd-degree burns. The woman was a passenger, and the coffee spilled as she was trying to open the lid to add cream. While the car was parked. Phew! Now that I've put that out there, I've got to fairly say that overall, yes, we are too litigious, no doubt. Witness poor Bob. Sue him? Who does that? You keep on blogging about whatever's on your mind, dude. I'll read it.
Sep. 21, 2011 6:51 pm
Well-done, well-written, and very well-thought-out. What's to question? Nothing. I agree with all of the above replies concerning Bob, his wooded playland, planned obsolescence, and stupid sue-happy people... I agree 100% with your sentiments! "Write on!"
Sep. 21, 2011 7:25 pm
Don't let subject matter be a problem, Randy. Regardless of what you write about, you manage to garner attention and cause folks like me to exercise some gray matter. ... Lawsuits cost us more money than taxes. Every time a case is won, our prices go up. I have some expletives reserved for anybody that tells me they won a lawsuit.
Sep. 22, 2011 6:08 am
Raedwulf, my husband is a die hard Nissan fan. He dreams about the GT-R and 350z. I totally agree about our law-suit happy culture that totally rejects personal responsibility. Too much McDonald's will make you fat? Shocker! I sometimes have to laugh at the ridiculous warnings on just about everything. Contact cleaning solution has a bold faced warning- Do NOT squirt directly into eyes! um....yeah!
Sep. 22, 2011 7:56 am
Good morning Randy. Lot's of food for thought here. In a perfect world there would be no need for law suits or attorneys for that matter. There are plenty of frivolous lawsuits & there are just as many that have merit. When Corporate America puts their bottom dollar ahead of public safety - KNOWINGLY marketing an unsafe product, what other recourse is there? It is very easy to stand in judgement of those who do opt to bring suit BUT there is often much more to the story than what we know. I could write for days on this subject from both angles. That said - the old sentiment "you get what you pay for" isn't always so. A $2,000 refrigerator should last longer than 4 years! I had an appliance repair guy replace the igniter in my dryer - imagine my surprise when he looked at my 7 year old double ovens and said, "I am surprised those are still working. You must not use the self clean feature." YIKES!
Sep. 22, 2011 9:01 am
Hi B-Nana, it's definitely a chicken or the egg scenario isn't it? I think the bottom line is that dishonesty is the root. Who was dishonest first? The nefarious businessman or the larcenous consumer? It really doesn't matter where it started. What matters is where it stops. The she said/he said scenario runs rampant throughout our society. Every single social program we have available to us is so full of corruption, not completely but so much so that you can hardly trust them to do what they were intended to do. You are right of course, a $2000 refridgerator should last longer than 4 years. I couldn't agree more. My blog was more just a pondering regarding why your refridgerator, and my Nissan, started to fall apart after their warranties expired. Perhaps we, as people, are just at base, greedy bastards. Channeling Nietzsche here.
Sep. 22, 2011 11:36 am
I read your blog with interest because we have a total Nissan family. The interesting point is that our first was a 1985 Nissan hardbody truck. We kept it until 1996 when we traded it for a 1997 pickup. That truck had 200K+ miles on it when we got our new 2010 Frontier pickup. I think we would have kept the 85 longer but we started having children and it was strictly a 2 seater. I've also owned other automobiles along the way and all of them were absolute junk compared to my Nissans. To each his own, I guess.
Sep. 22, 2011 1:14 pm
I work for an insurance company. My sister is an OBGYN who had to quit delivering babies because the price of malpractice insurance became more than her practice could handle. Tort Reform is desperately needed in this country. We settle more nuisance claims than you can imagine just to avoid legal bills fighting these frivolous claims.
Sep. 22, 2011 1:43 pm
Doug, interesting you should mention the insurance companies. Thats a whole other cousin in the travesty world of what were talking about here. Insurance has long caesed to be about protection and more about profit and along with that comes the corruption associated with greed from both the insurers and the insured. In a perfect world, insurance would be provided by non profits carefully regulated and policed, right along with the banks lol.
Sep. 22, 2011 1:50 pm
Maridele, I must have got the monday morning model. It was my first new vehicle, aged 24, I loved my new truck. I had it for its entire life, getting rid of it in 2003 with its second blown engine. It had less than 200,000 miles on it. I now drive a Denali that has just turned over to 300,000 kilometers, rough and dirty that's 200K miles. I'm on my second engine with this rig too but it seems to beholding up well. That Nissan, sat for years at a time, broken down constantly after it hit 110 thou. I replaced the head twice, the whole engine rebuilt once and replaced entirely once. The rad, transmission, rear end, was endless. I finally just gave up on it. I'm glad you've had good luck with them, that bodes well.
Sep. 23, 2011 8:11 am
I think like you said, there are Monday morning models of all vehicles and you can find lovers and haters for all. I personally will never own another Ford product. The two we had were both pieces of junk having to replace the transmission in both and then never having success with them afterward. One was a old Ford Taurus bought with low mileage from a government auction for $1500. By the time we got rid of it we could have purchased a new vehicle for the money that had been poured into it. Live and learn.
Sep. 23, 2011 2:11 pm
My Br-in-Law repairs laundry equipment. His Co. put in new equipment for the area women's prison. They recently learned these have bearings made to go out after a set number of hours! The repair is expensive and time-consuming because of the labor of tear-down. On the other hand, another br-in-law and his wife just replaced their washer/dryer after using them for 48 years. Go figure! They were still working, too.
Sep. 24, 2011 4:43 am
Nice read, and food (for thought), ha. I can't say whether this is true or rumor, but did you hear of the woman that sued pine-sol for false advertising when little pine trees did not fly out of the bottle and clean her floor for her? Sigh!
Sep. 24, 2011 5:53 am
I would have appreciated having Bob as a neighbor. Our kids missed out on grandfathers and neighbors here will yell and shoo you off their property! We have woods and creeks around and my kids go there often. They come back with great stories, soaked to the bone, scratched, dirty, bug bitten, tired and happy. I have prepared them to be safe and not to be destructive. I send them out with full knowledge that they need to be careful - I don't sit at home thinking if anything happens I will sue the land owner! We have no clue if it is privately owned or the boroughs. There are no signs posted to stay out/private property so we are comfortable with giving our kids instruction in personable responsibility, common sense and respect. The fun part they manage on their own quite well! As for product longevity issues... well, there are 9 of us so anything that lasts 6 months or more, without issue, is deemed a quality product in this house!
Sep. 24, 2011 9:08 am
We in the US have spawned so many Law School graduates that need employment to pay off the obscene loans that there have to be lawsuits and so on. Friends and I (all old enough to be your parents) were having a similar philosophical discussion recently and we concluded that our current national mindset appears to be morally bankrupt. That aside, a mechanic told me that he felt all the cars and light trucks build after 1975 were designed to self destruct after 75K miles. True? Who knows?
Sep. 24, 2011 9:27 am
Love the blog, Raedwulf. Great thoughts here. My friend, the music teacher, must carry insurance against claims. What a country this has become. We have an personal liability umbrella policy because you just never know when you walk past someone at the store and they'll sue you because you caused them to bump their hand on their cart. Exaggeration? Maybe, but maybe not. We don't allow the neighborhood kids to play on our property line in the trees, because we simply can't take a chance. I have had good luck with cars (stuck with the same "brand", if you will, since my first car while I was in college. In fact, I'm 46, and my current car is only the second one I've had since I was 20. Wish I could say the same about other things... And I just have to say one thing about the McDonald's lawsuit (and I'm not defending them...don't eat there now and don't ever plan to)....I like coffee. I know that coffee is hot when I order it. And I know to be careful when I open that coffee to add sugar and/or cream. And I don't do it in my car. I'll either go inside to order the coffee or wait until I'm home. Companies should absolutely be responsible for selling a product that they know is defective or inferior. But that doesn't absolve the responsibility of the public to exercise caution and good judgement. Sorry, getting off my soapbox now. : )
Sep. 24, 2011 1:17 pm
It's call the Doctrine of Attractive Nuisance - what an evil evil man Bob must have been (rolls eyes). We have 22 acres of land. With a dirt road. That apparently beckoned to dirtbike riders. So it was our land with its dirt road that caused the boy to fall off his dirt bike and not a) his parents stupidity in letting him have one b) without a helmet or safety equipment and c) riding alone. Go figure.
Sep. 24, 2011 1:51 pm
Your blog hits home in so many ways! When we got married (39 years ago) we used my Grandmother's old wringer washer (it was 30 years old then). When we moved into our first house, my parents gave us their old washer & dryer which was 13 years old. We finally replaced the washer 8 years later and the dryer 10 years later. Since we bought new ones, we are on our 4th set in 26 years!!. The repair people told us they make the replacement parts & procedures expensive enough so you feel justified in buying a NEW one rather than repair the old. We are a throw-away society for sure. I, too, worked for an insurance company, and to hear the people who wanted to sue us was astounding. On TV they give people JUST ENOUGH info to make them think insurance is awful. Headline: "Insurance company is being sued because they would not cover treatment for cancer for a young mother." The REST OF THE STORY.... sadly, the young mother had received all conventional courses of treatment for 2 years and had gone through remission and then to have it back again. In desperation they wanted to fly to a city in Mexico and have her lie in bee-balm for 72 hours. That treatment was denied. If we HAD paid for it, and she had died during the treatment, can just imagine THOSE headlines! "Young woman covered in bee dung dies as insurance company calls this a treatment." I cried when I read the Bob story. I am so sad that young kids today aren't having the childhoods that so many of us were lucky to have back in the day..... free of cell phones, tracking devices, and fear of everything.
Sep. 24, 2011 4:26 pm
I don't really have anything to add except that America as more pending lawsuits then anyother country in the world. I believe I read that somewhere and at this time cannot cite a source however my biggest beef is with the people that what to control what I eat. Now I do believe that the food manufacturers have an obligation to accurately and honestly report what they add to the recipes and give reasonable serving sizes.I mean really, who uses 2 tablespoons of ketchup for french fries. However that is where thier responsibility stops. After all that info is placed in a conspicuous spot and printed in a manner that is easily understandable it is now my responsibility to make the best choice for me.
Sep. 25, 2011 7:54 am
Did not know how else to communicate with you. I just noticed you tried my ricotta coffee cake recipe. I generally only make it in the dead of winter when the atmosphere is dry. Perhaps it was too humid when you tried it. That's the only thing I can think of. Thanks for trying it. The bread dough part is useful for making many types of rolls and coffee cakes. I use it to make garlic swirl rolls, cinnamon sugar coffee cake and I rollit up with pie filling to make fruit coffee cakes.
Sep. 25, 2011 8:13 am
Where to begin. I guess the first would be the toyotas and hondas that we drove from new to 400,000 & 300,000 miles with the original engines and trannys. Now I have a 2008 Toyota Rav, and while I like it, it is apparent that it will not last like the earlier models. I bought all KitchenAid Proline appliances when I bought this house 2 years ago because I had always loved my KitchenAid dishwashers that I put in all of my homes through the years. It was a hard decision because reviews on various sites would bemoan folks new appliances with chronic problems. For the first time, I bought the extended warranties and I am so happy that I did. The dishwasher has had 4 service calls and the frig 2. The repair company that Lowes sent over for repairs (contracted incompetent subs) advised me to finally put duct tape over the front vent of my new $1600. dishwasher to prevent the water leaking out the vent thus running down the stainless steel front and requiring cleaning every time I ran it. I was so outraged I kicked them out of my house. I think the bottom line with the manufacturers of appliances is that it is down to a couple of manufacturers now who make all the brands. ALmost all their manufacturing has been shipped out of the country and because a couple own all the brands, they do NOT have to compete much with other manufacturers. BTW I think GE sold off all appliance manufacturing last year so they are all about jet engines and nuclear power plant equipment? Tort reform.....I guess it depends on how you might perceive injustice. We are currently involved in a class action lawsuit against United Health Care. We kept our medical with retirement from our state after working over 30 years. We had to pay $1145 a month for this retirement medical insurance and they paid absolutely NO claims. We went to their providers, yet they would always deny our claims saying that every charge was not an "allowed" service or charge. 2009 we were just under $30,000 out of pocket after a brief hospitalization. Needless to say, one of us had to go back to work full time to get decent medical coverage again or one illness was going to wipe us out. I dunno about the rest of you, but after paying $1145 a month, I expected them to pay our medical bills. When we were notified of a class action against United we signed up. May never get a thing, but these rip off artist who prey on folks when they are sick disgust me and should not be allowed to carry on unchallenged. We currently have a friend who is going through salivary cancer treatment and his wife has to fight for treatment that he is denied all the time. is not massages or some holistic treatment. It is treatments that highly trained oncologists rec. for the treatment of this disease. The insurance keeps denying treatment protocols because when he dies, they don't have to cover him at all anymore. Very simple. Read... Wendell Potter, former executive at CIGNA and Humana, senior fellow on healthcare for the Center for Media and Democracy, author of Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans if you don't believe my claims here. We also brought suit against the person who sold us a waterfront property with giant and expensive lies on the property disclosure. We almost lost the property after much of it slid into Puget Sound. Unbeknownst to us, they had filled the entire thing (without any permits or engineering studies) about 3 months before they put it on the market. Of course it collapsed into the sound when we had heavy rains and we were looking at engineering repairs that far exceeded the value of our home or property. BTW there is no slide insurance if there has ever been any history of sliding previously.
Sep. 25, 2011 8:22 am
We spent thousands on engineering and a lawsuit. We won and were still out of pocket about $27,000., after all was said and done. Might not be right to some of you, but we have worked our @sses off our entire lives, lived by the rules and law of the land, paid all our bills and I don't think crooks have a right to rip us off. Sorry to rant......but the outrage is still with me.
Sep. 25, 2011 12:22 pm
Hey Duff, I spent a little while thinking about your post. The way you write about the coffee incidents would seem to indicate that you feel McDonalds was culpable in the scaldings, that they were both aware of the problem and continued to sell overly hot coffee in spite of it. I guess where I have a problem is that in order to believe that, I would then also have to believe that they did this with malice aforethought. If that were the case, I’d applaud these lawsuits you’ve mentioned, I really would. I expect, however, that the real reasons are far far different from that. I just cannot imagine that they knew they were harming people and said, tough tiddy. Perhaps it all started with consumers complaining that the coffee was too tepid by meals end, so they analyzed it to death and determined the precise temperature it should be served at so that by the time the consumer got around to consuming it, it was still hot! I cannot believe that any single person or group of individuals within the corporation knowingly set out to cause harm nor did they perpetuate a harmful situation. They weren’t serving poison for crying out loud it was HOT coffee which as we all know, every freaking one of us knows, HOT coffee is well, HOT, it can BURN you if you spill it on yourself. Suing McDonalds for money to make up for harm you did to yourself is just heinous. Conversely, however, suing McDonalds to get them to stop serving hot beverages at the drive through window? Well now, that makes a whole lot more sense doesn’t it? But did any of these people who claimed injury sue for that? No, not one. They said. “Look, through my own carelessness, I burned myself with your HOT coffee, you need to reimburse me for my pain and suffering because you are a big corporation and I’m not”. Saying that they intentionally kept the coffee at a temperature known to cause 2nd degree burns is utter nonsense. Its like having a guy smoking while gassing up his car causing an explosion and then suing Chevrolet for knowingly making the car run on a FLAMMABLE substance, an obese man suing Kellogs for knowingly selling Poptarts that are fattening (don’t laugh, I expect that’s a tort coming to a courtroom near you soon), a diabetic suing Coke for the soft drink addiction they had that led them to consuming 3 cups of sugar every single day for 20 years. My point is, spilling, or not spilling hot coffee on yourself is a personal responsibility. Personal. Period. The very first person who ever found a judge willing to hear a case involving asking for money for their own abdication of personal responsibility should have been horsewhipped along with the judge and the lawyer. I should add, seeing as how I think I’ve so vehemently argued my point here, that I do so completely free of any malice. I love to discuss stuff like this and I can get very passionate about it. Please don’t take offense. If I was king, then yeah, throw stuff, but I’m not.
Sep. 25, 2011 12:29 pm
Mauigirl, I think the HMO should be disbanded and every one of the directors jailed. Same with the criminals who built that property that slid into the sound. Grrrrr along with assets seized and redistributed to you. Thats just awful awful awful. Just for the record, I'm only talking about frivolous lawsuits. Tort REFORM, not tort removal. There needs to be some body beyond reproach (so it can't be governmental) that sets the standards between legitimate and illegitimate lawsuits. In your case, what the HMO and the builder did should be construed as criminal, their assets should be seized under a modified RICO statute with much bigger teeth, and like I said, jail time.
Sep. 25, 2011 12:33 pm
Oh also, I didn't say it in my original post but I want to acknowledge that there are companies out there still trying to bring the best product they can to market. Toyota, Honda and Hyundai being among them. There's lots of them and generally they charge a lot more than their competitors. Of course none of that explains why my Cuisinart toaster is such junk.....
Sep. 25, 2011 12:42 pm
Hey CJ, here works fine! Yeah, I don't know what I did wrong but the difference between what I envisioned when I read your recipe and what I produced as a result of making it was diabolical. It was really rainy when I made it, so maybe the damp....anyhow, no harm, no foul, I was glad to have it to try!
Sep. 27, 2011 3:04 am
People should watch the documentary Hot Coffee which is about tort reform and how it got started. It's rather eye opening and emphasizes the need to do your own research on a topic and not just swallow the headlines we are fed. While some law suits are eye roll worthy, some are just made to look that way. It's all about spin folks. The old woman with the 2nd degree burns on her genitals from Mcd.'s coffee just wanted them to cover the bills Medicare wouldn't pay. That was all. McDonald's refused. My jaded side says really hot coffee probably did decrease the demand for free refills. Do they even offer that anymore? There is no requirement for health insurance companies to pass the savings they garner from monetary caps on law suits on to their customers. Most of the profit gets pocketed by the company and rates still increase while they point at so called silly lawsuits as the culprit. We are all paying a heavy cost for greed, and with more than just what's in our wallets.
Sep. 27, 2011 8:45 am
alegria....well said. I used to work for a large company, and we had an entire marketing department (not to mention legal dept) who's job was to make the company look good in spite of any signs otherwise. When folks read about many of these frivolous lawsuits, they are reading P.R. from the companies that are involved. It's called spin. Many of these lawsuits are based upon a repeated pattern of injury or neglect. Most of these lawsuits require the injured party to sign a privacy statement, so that the rest of the world will NEVER know about the transgression. The public will only hear the public relations releases from the company involved. If folks don't believe that there can be real calculated neglect or cover ups, they should read the book by the former corporate whistleblower from CIGNA that I referenced above or watch Erin Brockovich or The Smartest Guys in the Room (Enron debacle) Those are very real examples of evil and greed getting in the way of what is right. I would also like to mention that our $1145 a month retirement medical insurance is not an HMO. It is a for profit company in the US that has several class action lawsuits against them for their nasty practices of denying healthcare or for disallowing standard prices and practices. These lawsuits are just the cost of doing business for them and I meet folks every day in this great country who are getting the same treatment from their insurance carriers. As a matter of fact, the number one cause of folks who are 50+ losing their homes in the US is medical bills. Ridiculous!
Sep. 27, 2011 9:42 am
Your medical coverage in the US is abyssmal. Your medical care is second to none. Our medical coverage in Canada is socialized, we pay little and we are covered comprehensively. The downside is that the care available has problems but that's another story.
Sep. 27, 2011 9:44 am
All I want to say is "AMEN" to all that was said in your blog!!
Sep. 27, 2011 11:35 am
Raedwulf, Our medical care is second to none in the US if you have great insurance or tons of money. One of our relatives lost their job while in the process of being treated for lung cancer (non-smoker and under 40) No doctors would see her and when she was in uncontrollable pain, she drove herself to the hosp. They tapped her lung and told her that they had "stabilized" her which is all that is required when you can't pay. They pushed her out he door. It was nightmarish trying to find help for her. She passed away this summer leaving a seven year old daughter behind. Until you see this outrageous treatment in our great country....... folks have no idea. Thanks for the thought provoking blog.
Sep. 27, 2011 1:19 pm
Hey Maui, thats kind of what I said lol, coverage - lousy, care - good. My son was born in Swedish Medical in Seattle mostly because my then SO was a US citizen with a top drawer HMO (the same guy who delivered Bill Gates kids delivered mine). The level of care that we recieved at Swedish was absolutely unlike anything we have in Canada, better than anything I could possibly imagine. It was an eye opener for this Cdn, born and raised on the socialist medicine as I've been. It's not that the care in Canada is inferior, its just done on a BUDGET and that was the biggest difference. In Canada my SO (a placentia previa victim) was in a room with 4 other high risk pregnancy women who shared 1 RN between 8 patients with no additional support staff. In Seattle, my SO had a private room and an RN who was tasked with only 2 patients. The medicine was pretty much equal but the other stuff, was just unequivocally superior. I know how lucky we were to have a top drawer HMO on our side. I see and read and of course, the internet has brought me friends from around the world. I was cheering for Obama with the rest of you 3 years ago.
Sep. 27, 2011 7:32 pm
I had alot of of hope for our president, but I am very disheartened at this point. BTW I had surgery at St Pete's in Olympia about five years ago. The post op floor that had at least 50 patients freshly out of surgery had one RN and one LPN on the graveyard shift. It was scary. Thank god Sparky stayed with me and took care of me.
Sep. 28, 2011 10:35 pm
Well . . . here's my 2 cents - I agree with Petey. period.
Oct. 16, 2011 12:26 pm
Randy - Late reply, i know, but I've been at Mom's for 3 weeks. Anyway, I agree with what you said, sort of. Yes, there are way, way too many silly lawsuits. But the folks who bring lawsuits, valid or otherwise, can only sue for money. They can't get a court order to prevent McD's from selling too-hot coffee. FWIW - we're talking 2nd-degree burns. Not scalding, but big honking oozing blisters. Skin grafts. Drive-thru coffee isn't supposed to require hospitalization, is it? McD's did what all corporations do; they weighed the costs of claims against lost profits from coffee that's perceived as too cold. Classic cost-benefit analysis. Their warning signs in the drive-thru that came out of this lawsuit are good, though. So yeah, I'm on her side in this one. Want a good laugh? read the warnings on any of your instuction manuals at home. Most of them are the result of a claim or lawsuit. Did you know that lawn mowers should not be used to trim hedges? Some bozo had to try it, for sure. Otherwise it wouldn't be there. What we have lost is the 'reasonable man' theory. I want it back.
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Let's see, in keeping it to a subject, at age 22 I had a filet doused in Bernaise sauce aboard a train. That was it, I was hooked on fine food. Living in a small town necessitates learning to cook well to maintain that stellar menu.
My favorite things to cook
Oh man, only a thousand characters? My favorite things to cook are items that make YOU happy. I'll try anything and thus far it would be far easier to list those things I don't like than those I do. So far, I hate Cilantro and I'm allergic to green chiles. It's a short list.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Christmas. I like everything about that meal and every single year I aim to improve.
My cooking triumphs
Every smile, every gasp of delight, every accolade, such sweet victory!
My cooking tragedies
A Cioppino recipe I found here. I served it as part of one of those Christmas dinners and the cod was a poor choice. It was terrible, ghastly fishy taste. I've since learned a thing or two about freshness in fish. Prior to that, hmm perhaps when I was 10, I made a spice cake that called for whole cloves....hey, that's what it said on the outside of the bottle, whole cloves....
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