PostHeaderIcon
U.S. Senate passes landmark health care reform bill

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The United States Senate has approved a hard-fought measure to overhaul the health care system. The vote will be followed by the difficult process of reconciling the Senate-passed bill with one approved by the House of Representatives, in order to get a final measure to President Barack Obama.

HAVE YOUR SAY
How do you feel about the bill’s passage? Do you think it will be effective or fail?
Add or view comments

“The yeas are 60, the nays are 39. H.R. 3590 as amended, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is passed,” Vice President Joe Biden announced. Senator Jim Bunning of Kentucky did not show up for the vote leading to the 39 nays. Mike Reynard, a spokesman for Bunning, said in an e-mail that “The senator had family commitments.”

The vice president presided over the Senate at the time of the vote in his role as President of the United States Senate.

As expected, Republicans voted against the bill while all Democrats and two Independents, Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, voted for it.

At an estimated $87 billion, the measure would expand health insurance coverage to about 30 million more Americans currently without it, and create new private insurance marketplaces, or exchanges, to expand choice.

And, like the slightly more expensive measure passed by the House of Representatives, the Affordable Health Care for America Act, it would end a practice by private insurance companies of denying coverage to individuals with existing health problems.

Both the Senate and House measures would require nearly all Americans to purchase some form of insurance, while lower-income Americans would receive help from federal government subsidies.

This is a victory because we have affirmed that the ability to live a healthy life in our great country is a right and not merely a privilege for the select few.

In remarks before the vote, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Democrat from Nevada, said opponents had done everything they could to prevent the vote from taking place.

Speaking to reporters, Reid and others hailed the vote as a victory and a major step toward providing millions more Americans with access to health care. “This is a victory because we have affirmed that the ability to live a healthy life in our great country is a right and not merely a privilege for the select few,” Reid said.

Reid and others including Robert Byrd, the 92-year-old Democrat from West Virginia, paid tribute to Senator Edward Kennedy, who died this past August after spending decades of his career in the Senate pursuing health care reform.

When casting his vote Byrd said, “Mr. President, this is for my friend Ted Kennedy. Aye.”

Victoria Reggie Kennedy, the widow of Senator Kennedy, watched the proceedings from the Senate visitor’s gallery, as did Representative John Dingell, Democrat from Michigan, who has been a long time advocate of health care reform and who sponsored and introduced the House version of the health care reform bill.

In the final hours of debate on the Senate bill, Republicans asserted it would be ineffective and add sharply to the U.S. budget deficit.

Mr. President, this is for my friend Ted Kennedy. Aye.

Senator Jeff Sessions, Republican from Alabama said of the bill, “This legislation may have a great vision, it may have a great idea about trying to make the system work better. But it does not. These are huge costs [and] it’s not financially sound.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell vowed to defeat the bill when the Senate reconvenes in January saying, “This fight is not over. This fight is long from over. My colleagues and I will work to stop this bill from becoming law.”

Senator Olympia Snowe, a moderate Republican from Maine who helped approved the Senate Finance Committee’s version of health care reform, the America’s Healthy Future Act, earlier in the year and who remarked she may not vote on the final bill, said, “I was extremely disappointed,” noting that when the Democrats reached their needed 60 votes to overcome a filibuster, “there was zero opportunity to amend the bill or modify it, and Democrats had no incentive to reach across the aisle.”

Ahead are difficult negotiations with the House of Representatives to craft a final bill President Obama would sign into law. These talks, which will formally get under way early in the new year, will take place amid anger among many liberal House Democrats the Senate bill failed to contain a government-run public health insurance option.

This fight is not over. This fight is long from over. My colleagues and I will work to stop this bill from becoming law.

Members of the House Progressive Caucus have vowed to fight to keep this public option in any final legislation that emerges, along with other provisions they say are needed to protect lower and middle-income Americans and hold insurance companies accountable.

In a statement, the Democratic chairmen of three key House committees said while there are clear differences between House and Senate bills, both will bring fundamental health care coverage to millions who are currently uninsured.

Obama administration officials have been quoted as saying they anticipate negotiations on a final bill would not be complete until after the President’s State of the Union Address in January, and could slip even later into the new year.

If passed, this will be the most important piece of social policy since the Social Security Act in the 1930s, and the most important reform of our health care system since Medicare passed in the 1960s.

President Obama issued a statement to the press in the State Dining Room in the White House saying that the vote is “legislation that brings us toward the end of a nearly century-long struggle to reform America’s health care system.”

He also pointed out the bill’s strengths, noting, “The reform bill that passed the Senate this morning, like the House bill, includes the toughest measures ever taken to hold the insurance industry accountable. Insurance companies will no longer be able to deny you coverage on the basis of a preexisting condition. They will no longer be able to drop your coverage when you get sick. No longer will you have to pay unlimited amounts out of your own pocket for the treatments you need. And you’ll be able to appeal unfair decisions by insurance companies to an independent party.”

He also noted how historic the bill is, saying, “If passed, this will be the most important piece of social policy since the Social Security Act in the 1930s, and the most important reform of our health care system since Medicare passed in the 1960s.”

Obama noted the potential social impact, saying, “It’s the impact reform will have on Americans who no longer have to go without a checkup or prescriptions that they need because they can’t afford them; on families who no longer have to worry that a single illness will send them into financial ruin; and on businesses that will no longer face exorbitant insurance rates that hamper their competitiveness.”

Obama afterwards made phone calls to various Senators and other people, including Victoria Kennedy and David Turner of Little Rock, Arkansas. Mr. Turner had his health insurance rescinded in January of last year, after his insurance company went back into his record and alleged that he failed to disclose his full medical record at the time he applied for coverage. Turner was First Lady Michelle Obama’s guest during her husband’s speech to a joint session of Congress on health care reform back in September.

PostHeaderIcon
Supporters of Myanmar’s Suu Kyi mark detained leader’s 62nd birthday

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Aung San Suu Kyi, the detained leader of the National League for Democracy in Myanmar marked her 62nd birthday today, still under house arrest, where she has spent most of the past 17 years.

About 250 supporters met at the National League for Democracy (NLD) headquarters in Yangon, not far from Suu Kyi’s home, and held a rally calling for her release. Doves and balloons were released into the air, under the watchful eyes and video cameras of around 50 plainclothes police officers, who were stationed across the street.

The police force was augmented by a dozen truckloads of members of the Union Solidarity and Development Association, the political arm of the State Peace and Development, the junta that rules Myanmar.

“The doves symbolise peace. We also released colourful balloons, which rise like her prestige when they fill the sky,” NLD women’s wing leader Lai Lai was quoted as saying by Agence France Presse.

With the party marking marking Suu Kyi’s birthday as “Myanmar Women’s Day,” Lei Lei read out a statement at the ceremony, calling Suu Kyi “irreplaceable” and praising her “honesty, bravery and perseverance.”

Security was beefed up around Suu Kyi’s lakeside home on University Avenue, which is usually open to traffic during daytime, but is closed on significant anniversaries such as Suu Kyi’s birthday or the May 30 anniversary of her detention.

NLD supporters said police were also watching their homes.

“Plainclothes police circled around my house on their motorcycles last night until dawn,” Su Su Nway, 34, was quoted as saying by Agence France-Presse. She was arrested on May 15 with 60 others during a prayer rally for Suu Kyi in Yangon, and was released for health reasons on June 7. She said around 52 NLD supporters were still in custody.

Suu Kyi is generally barred from receiving visitors, so she spent the day alone. Except for her maid, a personal physician, a dentist and an eye specialist, the only other person to visit with Suu Kyi in the past year was United Nations Undersecretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari, whom she met for one hour last November at a government guest house.

Winner of the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize, Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for 11 of the past 17 years, continuously since 2003. Her National League for Democracy won a landslide election in 1990, but the military, which has ruled Myanmar since 1962, refused to honor the results. The country is also known as Burma, but the military government renamed it Myanmar in 1989.

Calls for Suu Kyi’s release have been issued by the NLD, various world bodies and other countries, but the pleadings have been met by no response from the generals.

“In our view, until their constitution is ratified, she will not be released,” Sann Aung, a Bangkok-based leader of the Burmese government-in-exile was quoted as saying by Reuters.

“They are worried that she will be a threat to the National Convention and the referendum,” he told Reuters, referring to the planned national referendum on a new constitution that is being written by the generals.

The Nation newspaper in Bangkok marked Suu Kyi’s birthday with an editorial, saying that sanctions against the Myanmar regime have been ineffective.

“The junta has earned huge amounts of foreign revenue from oil and gas exports, with prices jacked up many times over. With rich mineral resources, energy hungry countries have been attracted to Burma despite the repressive nature of the junta,” the editorial said, also making note of a recent deal that Russia has made to build nuclear reactor in Myanmar.

The paper also said Myanmar bodes ill for the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations regional grouping.

“As long as Aung San Suu Kyi remains incarcerated, ASEAN’s reputation and the group’s international standing will be tarnished. Asean leaders have repeatedly appealed to the Burmese junta to free her, but to no avail … today, Burma is the black sheep of ASEAN. Without any current provisions for sanctions, Burma will remain as intransigent in the future as it is today.”

PostHeaderIcon Understanding The Mbbs Degree

byAlma Abell

Earning a medical degree isn’t something that is easy, regardless of the type of degree sought. The MBBS in America actually stands for the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery and it is the most popular degree for doctors. These are the two bachelor degree programs that began in the U.K., but are now also offered in the U.S. In the U.S. it is the only bachelor degree that allows a student to use the term “doctor” before or after their name.

What is the MBBS Degree?

In the medical field, the MBBS is an undergraduate program. It takes approximately 5.5 years to complete, but this varies based on the program and school selected. During the course, the students will learn important human anatomy, medicine, human cytology, drugs formulation, pharmaceutical, chemistry and method and effect of surgery.

Possible Careers and Jobs with an MBBS Degree

Once you have completed the MBBS degree program in America, you are likely going to wonder what comes next? When you graduate with this degree, you will have the ability and right to use the word “Doctor” before their name, as the “Dr.” prefix. With this degree, you can peruse work in hospitals, medical practices and more. The majority of schools also offer job placement assistance for those who complete the program.

If you are considering pursuing an MBBS in America, then getting to know “what comes next,” after graduation can be beneficial. This will let you know what to expect and what you are working toward. Make sure to speak with counselors from the school where you are attending to find out for sure what options you have. Visit site for more information.

PostHeaderIcon
Preparations for inaugural Bathurst International Motor Festival begin

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Bathurst Regional Council has begun preparing the Mount Panorama motor racing circuit for the inaugural Bathurst International Motorsport Festival (BIMF) to be held between April 13 and 16, 2006. The Mount Panorama motor racing circuit is considered to be the home of motorsport in Australia.

Council’s staff have been busy cleaning the facilities, erecting signage, checking pedestrian bridges and inspecting the track surface for the past few days.

The BIMF will be the first event to be held at the 6.2 kilometre circuit over Easter since 2000. In 2000, Event Management Specialists held the first motorcycle racing event since 1990, but due to EMS going bankrupt a short time after their 2000 event was ran and the inability of the then Bathurst City Council to find another promoter, the Easter event was canned.

The BIMF is inspired by the Festival of Speed and Goodwood Revival in the United Kingdom. The Bathurst Regional Council and event promoter Global Entertainment Team promise that the event “will cater for all motoring enthusiasts, collectors and historians”.

According to the BIMF website, the on-track program consists of:

  • Manufacturers showcasing their vehicles and track times
  • Historic touring car races
  • Aussie racing car races
  • Australian GT sports car
  • Parade laps by car clubs
  • Parade laps and races by “Legends of Motorsport”
  • Stunt car and bike events
  • Rally cars
  • Displays of cars from all eras of Mount Panorama’s history
  • The chance for patrons to purchase a ride around the circuit in a race car.

Off the track, the organisers have promised manufacturer displays, merchandise stands, music, joyflights, Off-road demonstrations and joyrides, autograph sessions and interviews with influential people in the Australian motor industry.

PostHeaderIcon
News briefs:July 14, 2010

Wikinews Audio Briefs Credits
Produced By
Turtlestack
Recorded By
Turtlestack
Written By
Turtlestack
Listen To This Brief

Problems? See our media guide.

[edit]

PostHeaderIcon When Should You See An Orthodontist?

byAlma Abell

If you have crooked teeth or your bite is improper and as a result you cover your mouth with your hand when you smile, it is time to see an orthodontist. An orthodontist in Bloomingdale is a specialist dentist that has the training and skills that are necessary to realign crooked teeth so that you can smile without embarrassment.

What does an orthodontist actually do?

YouTube Preview Image

In the past it was rare to see an adult wearing braces, this is no longer the case. People today get orthodontic treatment regardless of their age.

Orthodontists, with the help of braces and aligners straighten teeth and improve the bite. Although many people profess that they see an orthodontist in Bloomingdale to straighten their teeth, it actually is equally important to deal with the way teeth fit together. Crooked teeth and teeth with an over or under bite are difficult to clean and maintain properly, as a result these patients will be plagued with tooth decay which in turn can lead to the loss of one or more teeth.

Orthodontics has come a long way:

There is evidence that orthodontics has been practiced since the days of the early Greeks although it wasn’t until the late 1920s that brackets and wires were first introduced. Up until the year 2000, braces were the only solution available for straightening and realigning teeth, in 2000 clear plastic aligners were introduced.

Plastic aligners are invisible, today even traditional braces are almost invisible as they use tooth colored or clear brackets; some are even attached to back side of the teeth.

Children should see the orthodontist at the age of seven. At this age the jaw is still growing and developing and early intervention is extremely helpful. There is really no age limit for adults although most adults will have completed the process by the time they are 40.

There is no need to be ashamed of your smile; a visit to an orthodontist in Bloomingdale is all you have to do to start the process of straightening your teeth. You are invited to make an appointment with Pure Dental Spa. Visit them online at www.puredentalspa.com/orthodontist

PostHeaderIcon
Gunman killed outside Colorado governor’s office

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A man identified as Aaron Richard Snyder showed up on Monday around 2:25 p.m. outside the Colorado Capitol offices of Governor Bill Ritter. He was carrying a 357-caliber 7 shot Smith and Wesson revolver with 20 extra rounds of ammunition and started screaming “I am the emperor” and “I am here to take over the state”.

When he was confronted by a Colorado State trooper, Snyder opened his jacket showing that he was carrying a gun. The trooper ordered Snyder to drop the gun, but instead he moved “menancingly” in the direction of the trooper who then shot him once in the head and twice in the chest.

Snyder died from the multiple gunshot wounds on the floor of the Capitol office building. The Capitol went on a full lockdown with employees, tour groups and visitors in the building at the time ordered to stay where they were.

Governor Ritter was interviewing a judge candidate in his office at the time of the shooting. He held a press conference on the Capitol step two hours later.

Mr. Snyder was under doctors care for delusional behavior. The Northglenn, Colorado police issued a BOL “Be On the Lookout” to all law enforcement agencies in Colorado for Snyder and his car, a 2004 black Kia, around 25 minutes before the shooting occurred.

PostHeaderIcon
Google provides Gmail access to American cell phone customers

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Gmail, Google’s popular e-mail service launched earlier last year, is now available to any American cell phone user via text messaging.

Cell phone owners can send Google their phone number, and are then sent an access code via SMS that enables them to open an account. Google has stated that the number is only used to “manage the number of accounts created per phone”, and that it “will never be sold or shared for marketing purposes” without the user’s permission.

The service is not necessarily free — cell phone service providers may charge for the delivery of the code.

While the system currently only works in the U.S., Google says it has plans to add more countries.

PostHeaderIcon Choosing The Best Dog Care In Alexandria, Va

byAlma Abell

A business trip will have the pet owner out of town for the better part of two weeks. That brings up the question of what to do with the dog. While friends might be willing to take in the pet for that period of time, there is another option to consider. The right kind of boarding service will provide all the Dog Care in Alexandria VA that is needed. Here are some of the reasons why opting for this type of arrangement makes sense.

Someone is With the Dog All Day

With professional Dog Care in Alexandria VA, there is someone on hand around the clock. For many dogs, just having humans nearby is enough to help calm the anxiety that comes from being away from the owner. When the attendants and other staff take the time to stop and talk to the dog, that makes the time go a little faster.

Meals and Medicine on Time

There will be no worries about the dog missing any meals. The staff at the boarding facility will ensure that the animal is provided with the right food at the same time each day. The water bowl will also be checked periodically to ensure the contents are fresh. If the pet must take medication for some type of health issue, the staff will now how to ensure the dog receives the medicine on time every time.

A Little Grooming

As long as the dog is being boarded, why not arrange for some grooming? Professionals at the facility can give the dog a bath, trim the nails, and brush the coat until it gleams. While the dog may not be all that crazy about taking a bath, having the coat brushed will most likely be a welcome event. When the owner returns from the trip, the dog will be clean, fresh, and ready to see what is happening at home.

For anyone who needs to board a pet for a few days, visit Forthuntanimalhospital.com and check out the range of services offered. All it will take is a quick tour of the facility to know that the family pet will be in good hands. You can also visit them on Facebook for more information.

PostHeaderIcon
Maker Faire 2009 wraps up in San Mateo, California

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The fourth annual Maker Faire took place this past weekend at the San Mateo Fairground in San Mateo, California located in the United States. The first Maker Faire, which took place in 2006, had approximately 20,000 people in attendance. This year, more than 80,000 people were expected to attend; quadruple the attendance of just four years prior. On Saturday night, it was reported that attendance was up considerably over last year’s event.

Maker Faire, the self-declared “World’s Largest DIY Festival”, offers a forum where hundreds of makers and crafters alike man booths where they display their work. In the main halls alone, there were hundreds of booths. Outside the expo halls, the surrounding area was also filled with many interesting projects, some of which were mobile. In addition to all of the projects on display, there were a number of on-stage presentations. The biggest presentation of the weekend was given by Adam Savage who spoke on the topic of his “Colossal Failures”. During his talk, the Fiesta Hall was filled to capacity.

The theme for this year’s fair was “Remake: America” after President Obama‘s call to “begin again the work of remaking America”. In addition, “going green”, alternative fuel vehicles, crafting, steampunk and sciences for the young, were common themes found throughout the fair.