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The defense has filed a Libby motion in the penalty phase of the BALCO steroids case. Everyone in the legal field knew this was coming.

Pope Benedict is The Decider on who is a Christian and what is a Christian church. I seem to remember a few wars on this issue…okay, so the Swiss root on my family tree fought as mercenaries in the wars over this, and the Dutch and Palatine German roots transplanted themselves to the Mohawk Valley of what is now New York because of it. I guess we don’t have enough religious hard-feelings at the moment.

July 10, 2007   9 Comments

This Is No Surprise

BBC reports: Iraq fears Turkey troop build-up

Iraq says Turkey has 140,000 soldiers along its border, prompting fears of an incursion against Kurdish guerrillas.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari an ethnic Kurd himself, said his government was against any breach of Iraqi sovereignty.

He called for talks with Ankara to solve the issue.

Turkey accuses Kurdish separatists of staging attacks from inside Iraq. It has often warned Baghdad that it is prepared to take military action.

If the PKK weren’t enough, Turkey is also under pressure to respond to the recent bombing that killed more than 100 people in Amirli, a Turkman village. The Turks have shown great concern over the fate of their ethnic cousins, the Turkmeni, in Iraq. There are elections looming, so I wouldn’t put too much faith in slow, patient diplomacy.

July 10, 2007   2 Comments

Who Knew?

The BBC reports on a study in Britain that found that Librarians ‘suffer most stress’

Fighting fires may sound taxing, chasing criminals demanding, but a new study says that working in a library is the most stressful job of all.

Librarians are the most unhappy with their workplace, often finding their job repetitive and unchallenging, according to psychologist Saqib Saddiq.

He will tell the British Psychological Society that one in three workers suffer from poor psychological health.

The study surveyed nearly 300 people drawn from five occupations.

They were firefighters, police officers, train operators, teachers and librarians and were intended to cover the spectrum, with the librarians first-thought to be the least stressful occupation.

If they gave librarians guns and axes, I’m sure their stress level would be reduced.

July 10, 2007   7 Comments


CNet reports: Electronic records not helping outpatient medicine

Electronic records hold the potential to improve medical care by flagging problems such as drugs that shouldn’t be combined, but a study by Stanford and Harvard medical school researchers has concluded that so far they haven’t improved the quality of outpatient health care.

The researchers studied a database of 1.8 billion doctor visits in 2003 and 2004 and examined performance on 17 indicators of quality. The results were mediocre, according to Stanford.

“In essence, we found little difference in the quality of care being provided by physicians with electronic health record systems, compared to those without these systems,” Dr. Randall Stafford, a Stanford associate professor of medicine and senior author of the research, said in a statement. The research is scheduled for publication Monday in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

I’ve done some work for doctors, and an amazing number of them have a “real thing” about computers. You point out how much of the equipment they use and tests they run involve computers, and they still won’t budge.

Typing your notes in a computer is not computerized medical record keeping. Garbage in – garbage out. The computerized drug database at the local KMart has stopped three prescriptions that my Mother was given by doctors. The drugs would either react badly with something else she was taking, or she was allergic to them based on an earlier incident. This is what electronic systems are designed to do, cut down on the problems.

When people talk about how electronic record keeping is going to save money, they need a reality check – they can’t do a thing until they are used as designed and that requires changing the attitudes of health professionals.

July 10, 2007   12 Comments

happy blogiversary™

the marsupial master of minuscule and coiner of the word “blogtopia”, skippy the bush kangaroo, is ready for kindergarten as today is his fifth blogiversary.

i wish the entire crew many hoppy rebounds of the day.

July 10, 2007   2 Comments