How Being a Doctor Became the Most Miserable Profession
By the end of this year, it's estimated that 300 physicians will commit suicide. While depression amongst physicians is not new—a few years back, it was named the second-most suicidal occupation—the level of sheer unhappiness amongst physicians is on the rise.
Simply put, being a doctor has become a miserable and humiliating undertaking. Indeed, many doctors feel that America has declared war on physicians—and both physicians and patients are the losers.. . . (More at the source)
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
> One of my favorite YouTube channels is "potholer54," an Australian science journalist. This one is a bit long (18:28) but worth a look. The very end is hilarious.
> "You cannot reason people out of positions they didn't reason themselves into."
> -- Ben Goldacre
2014 OADP Annual Meeting
Tuesday, May 13th in Eugene
Wrongful Executions Expert to PresentOn Tuesday May 13th, American University Professor and author Richard Stack will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 annual meeting of Oregonians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty (OADP).
Professor Stack, author of three books, including his latest, GRAVE INJUSTICE: The Unearthing of Wrongful Executions will expand on major mistakes made in recent years. His compelling descriptions of nineteen wrongful executions illustrate the flaws of the death penalty, which he argues, is ineffective in deterring crime and cost more than sentences of life without parole.
Temple Beth Israel
1175 E. 29th Ave, Eugene 97403
Richard Stack, American University Professor and author of Grave Injustice
6 pm Dinner, 7pm Meeting & Program
Public is welcome Tickets $25On Nov. 22, 2011 when Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber was announcing his moratorium on executions he stated "I am calling on the legislature to bring potential reforms before the 2013 legislative session and encourage all Oregonians to engage in the long overdue debate that this important issue deserves." The discussion moves to Eugene at this event.
"In practice Oregon has an expensive and unworkable death penalty system that fails to meet basic standards of justice. It is clear the system is broken"
Governor John Kitzhaber, November 22nd, 2011
Another part of the Governor's 2011 statement was "In practice Oregon has an expensive and unworkable death penalty system that fails to meet basic standards of justice. It is clear the system is broken". Basic standards of justice that resonate with Oregon voters are "fairness" and the "mistakes made in the administration of the death penalty system". The most tragic mistake is the execution of an innocent person.
The OADP annual meeting is an opportunity for all OADP supporters to gather together to approve the slate of officers for the next 12 months and to hear the about our progress on the journey to repeal in Oregon. The general public is invited to attend and take the opportunity to learn more about our efforts to improve the criminal justice system in Oregon.
Ticket are available on-line by going to www.oadp.org, purchasing them with a credit card through Pay Pal. Individual tickets are only $25. Reserve tables for eight by calling (503) 990-7060.
Table sponsors will have a table sign, be noted in the program for the evening and recognized from the podium.
For more information contact Ron Steiner at email@example.com, call (503) 990-7060 or go to www.oadp.org.
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
All around, the fabric of peace and order is fraying. The leaders of Russia and Ukraine escalate their apocalyptic rhetoric. The Sunni-Shiite split worsens as Syria and Iraq slide into chaos. China pushes its weight around in the Pacific.
I help teach a grand strategy course at Yale, and I asked my colleagues to make sense of what's going on. Charles Hill, who was a legendary State Department officer before going to Yale, wrote back:
"The 'category error' of our experts is to tell us that our system is doing just fine and proceeding on its eternal course toward ever-greater progress and global goodness. This is whistling past the graveyard.
"The lesson-category within grand strategic history is that when an established international system enters its phase of deterioration, many leaders nonetheless respond with insouciance, obliviousness, and self-congratulation. When the wolves of the world sense this, they, of course, will begin to make their moves to probe the ambiguities of the aging system and pick off choice pieces to devour at their leisure.
"This is what Putin is doing; this is what China has been moving toward doing in the maritime waters of Asia; this is what in the largest sense the upheavals of the Middle East are all about: i.e., who and what politico-ideological force will emerge as hegemon over the region in the new order to come. The old order, once known as 'the American Century' has been situated within 'the modern era,' an era which appears to be stalling out after some 300-plus years. The replacement era will not be modern and will not be a nice one."
When Hill talks about the modern order he is referring to a state system that restrained the two great vices of foreign affairs: the desire for regional dominance and the desire to eliminate diversity. Throughout recorded history, large regional powers have generally gobbled up little nations. Powerful people have generally tried to impose their version of the Truth on less powerful people.
But, over these centuries, civilized leaders have banded together to restrain these vices. As far back as the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648, dominant powers tried to establish procedures and norms to secure national borders and protect diversity. Hegemons like the Nazis or the Communists tried to challenge this system, but the other powers fought back.
Today that system is under assault not by a single empire but by a hundred big and little foes. As Walter Russell Mead argues in a superb article in Foreign Affairs, geopolitics is back with a vengeance. Whether it's Russia seizing Crimea or China asserting itself, old-fashioned power plays are back in vogue. Meanwhile, pre-modern movements and people try to eliminate ethnic and religious diversity in Egypt, Ukraine and beyond.
China, Russia and Iran have different values, but all oppose this system of liberal pluralism. The U.S. faces a death by a thousand cuts dilemma. No individual problem is worth devoting giant resources to. It's not worth it to spend huge amounts of treasure to establish stability in Syria or defend a Western-oriented Ukraine. But, collectively, all the little problems can undermine the modern system. No individual ailment is worth the expense of treating it, but, collectively, they can kill you.
John Gaddis, another grand strategy professor, directs us to George Kennan's insights from the early Cold War, which he feels are still relevant as a corrective to the death-by-a-thousand-cuts mentality. He argues that we should contain these menaces until they collapse internally. The Moscow regime requires a hostile outside world to maintain its own internal stability. That's a weakness. By not behaving stupidly, by not overextending ourselves for example, we can, Gaddis argues, "make sure Putin's seeds of self-destruction are more deeply rooted than our own."
That's smart, but I think I'm less sure that time is on our side. The weakness with any democratic foreign policy is the problem of motivation. How do you get the electorate to support the constant burden of defending the liberal system?
It was barely possible when we were facing an obviously menacing foe like the Soviet Union. But it's harder when the system is being gouged by a hundred sub-threshold threats. The Republicans seem to have given up global agreements that form the fabric of that system, while Democrats are slashing the defense budget that undergirds it.
Moreover, people will die for Mother Russia or Allah. But it is harder to get people to die for a set of pluralistic procedures to protect faraway places. It's been pulling teeth to get people to accept commercial pain and impose sanctions.
The liberal pluralistic system is not a spontaneous natural thing. Preserving that hard-earned ecosystem requires an ever-advancing fabric of alliances, clear lines about what behavior is unacceptably system-disrupting, and the credible threat of political, financial and hard power enforcement.
Monday, April 28, 2014
Sunday, April 27, 2014
Chris Martenson: Welcome to this Peak Prosperity podcast. I am your host Chris Martenson, and today we're going to continue our dialogue on how to take your money away from Wall Street and put it to work on Main Street. It is our mission to surface and promote the sorts of investments that make our world a better place. And, fortunately, there are more and more examples to choose from thanks to dedicated and hardworking people everywhere.
I was really intrigued by something by something that came up in arecent interview
with Michael Shuman on local investment opportunities when he said this:
What I attribute Burlington's success to is that for the last twenty-five years, their economic development team, led in part by a fellow named Bruce Seifer, focused not on the attraction of global companies but focused instead on the nurturing of local business and local entrepreneurship. And they did it in a hundred different ways. They have done it through very careful downtown development of Burlington, they have done it through entrepreneurship programs and lending programs targeted to women, immigrants, minority groups. They have done it through interesting types of smart growth. They have done it through helping to organize small local business alliances as something different from the typical Chamber of Commerce, which usually gives bigger companies a louder voice. And I just feel like, you know, that is a testament—that is a design of economic development that more and more communities should be paying attention to.
(Much more at link ...)
Saturday, April 26, 2014
Thursday, April 24, 2014
7. Survey: Little car love among urban Millennials
More than half the adults between ages 18 and 34 questioned about transportation said they would consider moving to another city if it had more and better options for getting around, according to a new national survey. Nearly half of the young adult vehicle owners surveyed agreed they would seriously consider giving up their car if they could count on a range of transportation options.
USA Today, April 24
Monday, April 21, 2014
Group plans motion to defend Oregon same-sex marriage ban
// StatesmanJournal.com - News
The National Organization for Marriage announced plans today to file a motion to defend Oregon's state ban on same-sex marriage in federal court.
Great evidence of no need to commit to road expansions: DOT: Vehicle Miles Driven decreased 0.8% year-over-year in February [feedly]
DOT: Vehicle Miles Driven decreased 0.8% year-over-year in February
// Calculated Risk
The Department of Transportation (DOT) reported:Travel on all roads and streets changed by -0.8% (-1.7 billion vehicle miles) for February 2014 as compared with February 2013.. . .In the early '80s, miles driven (rolling 12 months) stayed below the previous peak for 39 months.
Currently miles driven has been below the previous peak for 75 months - 6+ years - and still counting. Currently miles driven (rolling 12 months) are about 2.3% below the previous peak.
The second graph shows the year-over-year change from the same month in the previous year.
In February 2014, gasoline averaged of $3.43 per gallon according to the EIA. that was down from February 2013 when prices averaged $3.73 per gallon.
As we've discussed, gasoline prices are just part of the story. The lack of growth in miles driven over the last 6 years is probably also due to the lingering effects of the great recession (high unemployment rate and lack of wage growth), the aging of the overall population (over 55 drivers drive fewer miles) and changing driving habits of young drivers.
Saturday, April 19, 2014
"A coalition group has collected enough signatures to suspend a newly-passed ordinance regulating companies like UberX and Lyft, and now Mayor Ed Murray wants to work with all stakeholders to reach a new agreement," reports Taylor Soper. The decision effectively puts the operation of transportation network companies back to square one, as if March legislation passed by the City Council in March to cap the number of drivers allowed to operate in the city at any given time never happened.
Seattle Mayor Muray has announced that the city and the companies will enter a 45-day negotiation process. Reports Soper: "If a compromise is reached during the negotiation process, the City Council could repeal the ordinance and then work together on a new set of regulations. If that happens, the referendum [as required by the signatures] would not appear on a ballot later this year."
Princeton study concludes U.S. government is an oligarchy – ‘The preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy’
Princeton study concludes U.S. government is an oligarchy – 'The preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy'
// Desdemona's Blog
Princeton Concludes What Kind of Government America Really Has, and It's Not a Democracy
16 April 2014
(PolicyMic) – A new scientific study from Princeton researchers Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page has finally put some science behind the recently popular argument that the United States isn't a democracy any more. And they've found that in fact, America is basically an oligarchy.
An oligarchy is a system where power is effectively wielded by a small number of individuals defined by their status called oligarchs. Members of the oligarchy are the rich, the well connected and the politically powerful, as well as particularly well placed individuals in institutions like banking and finance or the military.
For their study, Gilens and Page compiled data from roughly 1,800 different policy initiatives in the years between 1981 and 2002. They then compared those policy changes with the expressed opinion of the United State public. Comparing the preferences of the average American at the 50th percentile of income to what those Americans at the 90th percentile preferred, as well as the opinions of major lobbying or business groups, the researchers found out that the government followed the directives set forth by the latter two much more often.
It's beyond alarming. As Gilens and Page write, "the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy." In other words, their statistics say your opinion literally does not matter.
That might explain why mandatory background checks on gun sales supported by 83% to 91% of Americans aren't in place, or why Congress has taken no action on greenhouse gas emissions even when such legislation is supported by the vast majority of citizens.
This problem has been steadily escalating for four decades. While there are some limitations to their data set, economists Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez constructed income statistics based on IRS data that go back to 1913. They found that the gap between the ultra-wealthy and the rest of us is much bigger than you would think, as mapped by these graphs from the Center On Budget and Policy Priorities.
Piketty and Saez also calculated that as of September 2013 the top 1% of earners had captured 95% of all income gains since the Great Recession ended. The other 99% saw a net 12% drop to their income. So not only is oligarchy making the rich richer, it's driving policy that's made everyone else poorer. [more]
Friday, April 18, 2014
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Neil DeGrasse Tyson Said What He Thinks About Race Now That He's Made It, And Almost Nobody Noticed
To set the scene, the (poorly posed) question is referring to comments made by former Treasury Security and Harvard University President Lawrence Summers, who suggested that genetic differences could explain why there are fewer girls in science. Yup, he really was Treasury secretary and president of Harvard.
Neil deGrasse Tyson's answer is, um, out of this world. There, I said it. Let me have this one.
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Monday, April 14, 2014
Drive for Universal Health Care (DUH)
Health care activists from the east have been conducting a bus tour/caravan through the US and are now in California, headed for Oregon. They are expected to arrive in Grants Pass, accompanied by Laurie Simons and Terry Sterrenberg, producers of The Healthcare Movie, and singer-songwriter Bob Wickline, on Sunday, April 27. The schedule:
These events will include a screening of The Healthcare Movie, with live performances by Bob Wickline, and panel discussions afterwards with filmmakers Simons and Sterrenberg, DUH activists Sue Saltmarsh and Donna Ellington, and local advocates. In addition, supporters are invited to drive with the caravan from city to city. Each car will be responsible for their own expenses and will decide how far they want to go. Identifying ribbons and bumper stickers will be supplied to all drivers!
- April 27, 2:00-5:00 p.m., Unitarian Universalist Church, 525 NE 6th St., Grant's Pass
- April 28, 6:30 p.m. Bijou Art Cinema, 492 13th Ave., Eugene
- April 30, 7:00 p.m., First Unitarian Universalist Church, Elliot Chapel, 1011 SW 12th Ave., Portland
- May 1, 7:00 p.m., Grand Theatre, 191 High St. NE, Salem
Find updates and details of the tour here.
Sunday, April 13, 2014
Peak oil theorists have long been regarded by mainstream economists as the boys and girls who cried wolf. But just because the outlooks of mainstream economists failed to see the wolf does not mean it was not there. Rather, according to Roger Boyd's Energy and the Financial System: What Every Economist, Financial Analyst, and Investor Needs to Know, a rather large pack of wolves have been with us for quite some time now and our failure to deal with them has meant that they have grown in strength such that jointly they could derail the global economy.
To call Boyd a peak oil theorist, however, would be to reduce the complexity of his view for according to Boyd it is not only the availability of cheap oil that is in decline but rather what is in decline is the general availability of energy sources which provide a high amount of energy in return for energy invested. Indeed, Boyd's view revolves around a measure economists refer to as EROI, which measures the ratio between the amount of energy returned relative to energy invested. Thus we might better label Boyd a peak EROI Theorist for he believes that increasingly we will need to invest more energy in order to get energy back, as we have used up the vast majority of easily accessible high energy sources of oil, natural gas and to a lesser extent coal.
The importance of EROI is that to a large extent it determines the prosperity of society. The higher the EROI, the higher the prosperity levels, as we are able to direct more energy back into society rather than into producing more energy. According to Boyd, "our modern societies have become so hooked on nearly-free energy… with an EROI of at least 8 : 1 being required to maintain the high living standards and complex society to which we have become accustomed". Higher up the sophistication level Boyd cites that a societal EROI of up to 14:1 is required to support such things as good education, health care, and the arts. As the EROI continues to drop, however, it is not only the arts that we have to worry about, rather as Boyd's book illustrates the implications are potentially far reaching and devastating with the potential to reverse global prosperity and to do so rather unequally. . . .
Saturday, April 12, 2014
Oregon transportation funding could fall by $500M
// StatesmanJournal.com - News
People are driving less, and their vehicles have become more fuel efficient.
Our property tax system is a relic from a vastly different era, and it's serving us about as well as a medical procedures manual from the 1700s would serve a physician. Until we address this root cause of urban property development distortion, we are going to continue to have downtowns like Salem's -- littered with vacant lots serving only for the care, feeding, and storage of autos, next to far too many vacant storefronts, in a city with overwhelmed human services and declining public services, lots of homeless folks, and sprawl development at the periphery suctioning resources away from the core so that real estate interests can keep pouring new pavement for profit, while sticking the rest of us with the tab.
Thursday, April 10, 2014
If your blood isn't boiling after hearing him, you're either dead or among the 1%.
Loucks is next to the main branch of the Salem Public Library, which is at 555 Liberty St SE in Salem.
I'd tell you which bus routes it is on, but Salem's public transit system is down there with third-world places like Rwanda, so we have no weekend transit, and so knowing the bus routes will do you good to hear David Cay Johnston, who will likely talk about how disinvestment in public goods like transit has been startlingly effective in helping us have third world levels of inequality as well.
Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Sunday, April 6, 2014
Thus, when Arizona tried to provide matching public funds so that political candidates were not bought and sold like tires and six packs of beer, the court struck down the public funding — because, to the Roberts court, anything that reduces the influence of money is necessarily evil. However, the twisted logic used to justify striking down laws giving increased public funding to candidates who face a wealthy opponent who is self financing the campaign without public funds is that the public funding would somehow "chill" the speech of the self financing millionaire or billionaire. That "logic" was that the poor billionaire or millionaire trying to buy a seat would not be able to keep up with public funding.
Now, however, that the court has all but done away with any form of campaign bribery limitations — throwing open the door for unlimited contributions from corporations, and throwing down aggregate limits on how much individuals can contribute, and signaling that all contribution limits are soon to follow — there is no justification whatsoever for the idea that public funding does anything to deter or chill speech by wealthy individuals.
The court's bizarre Arizona decision was always tantamount to saying that anything the public wanted to do to prevent their politicians being bought and sold in a marketplace of contributions — thinly disguised bribes — was somehow a limit on the power of money to contest for those races, and that anything that limits the power of money over democracy is a violation of the First Amendment. But, having removed all limits the power of money, hasn't the court given us an opportunity to seek public funding for all elections, so that individuals can refuse to buy the tainted candidates and can insist on voting only for those who accept only public financing.
The bottom line is that the corporate board analogy for elected officials isn't entirely wrong; it is true that elected officials serve as kind of a policy boards for the governments that they oversee. But in that case, we need to look at what that policy board metaphor suggests: would Exxon Mobil allow shell or BP to determine who sits on the Exxon Mobil board by funding the candidates for the board? Would Coke allow Pepsi to select all the candidates for consideration by the Coke nominating committee by funding the search for the candidates for the Coke board? That is exactly what is happening in politics in America today: institutions who are often in conflict with and who often wish to weaken and surmount political controls are being given tools with which to determine who sits on the Board of Directors for those political bodies they oppose and would subvert.
The Dred Scott decision – that a person was a piece of property who could never have the rights of an individual under the American system — led to a Civil War and the slaughter of hundreds of thousands to undo. The Roberts court, with its fraudulent devotion to textualism masking a profoundly radical agenda to defang democracy once and for all and make America safe for corporate rule, has, in its reckless and totally non-textual Citizens United and McCutcheon decisions, produced the Dred Scott decision for the 21st century that will be even more consequential.
Roberts, Alito, Scalia, Thomas, and Kennedy will be remembered with Justice Taney, men of shocking and dangerous blindness, learned but devoid of any understanding or commitment to democracy.
Saturday, April 5, 2014
It's pitiful that we're watching Polk Co budget meltdown and simultaneously proposing to squander hundreds of millions from the pockets of Salem residents to allow a few wealthy area developers to profit from overtaxing Polk County services even further. We know that residential development in sprawl patterns costs more than it produces in tax revenue base, so the Bridgeasaurus is actually a job and services killer in Salem and in Polk County too..WARNING TO ALL SALEM VOTERS--THE SALEM CHAMBER OF COMMERCE WANTS TO RAISE YOUR TAXES HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS A YEAR FOR TWENTY YEARS TO BENEFIT POLK COUNTY AND KEIZER BUSINESSES AND GUT SALEM's DOWNTOWN. The underlined candidates below want to tax all of Salem to benefit a few wealthy developers and businesses.
Mayor: Anna Petersen is for the 3rd Bridge. AND TAXING AND TOLLING YOU TO PAY FOR THE BRIDGE TO BENEFIT HER FRIENDS.
Ward 2: Tom Andersen and Bradd Swank are against the 3rd Bridge and for common sense alternatives to address crossing issues.
Sherrone Blasi is for the 3rd Bridge AND TAXING AND TOLLING YOU TO PAY FOR THE BRIDGE TO BENEFIT HER FRIENDS.
Ward 4: Scott Bassett is against the 3rd Bridge and for common sense alternatives to address crossing issues.
Steve McCoid is for the 3rd Bridge. AND TAXING AND TOLLING YOU TO PAY FOR THE BRIDGE TO BENEFIT HIS FRIENDS.
Ward 6: Daniel Benjamin is for the 3rd Bridge AND TAXING AND TOLLING YOU TO PAY FOR THE BRIDGE TO BENEFIT HIS FRIENDS.
Xue Lor did not complete the Chamber questionnaire but is known to be against the 3rd Bridge and for common sense alternatives to address crossing issues.
Ward 8: Both Jim Lewis and Christopher Proudfoot are for the 3rd Bridge AND TAXING AND TOLLING YOU TO PAY FOR THE BRIDGE TO BENEFIT THEIR FRIENDS.
Friday, April 4, 2014
Thursday, April 3, 2014
Would you like to rent a garden plot this season? Please see below for the up-to-date list of community garden locations and availability.
Community Garden Coordinator
1660 Salem Industrial Drive NE
Salem OR 97301-0374
Community Garden Locations and Contact Information
Calvary Chapel Community Garden
1550 Hoffman Road NE
FULL for 2014
Brown Road Community Garden
2350 Brown Rd. NE
Fuente de Vida
3295 Ladd Ave. NE
Linda Mungia & Pamela Lyons-Nelson
Hammond Community Garden
4900 Bayne St. NE
Highland Neighborhood Garden
Corner of Hazel and Columbia NE
FULL for 2014
355 14th St. NE
Jardín de la Paz
4625 Cordon Rd. NE
Northgate Forgiveness & Peace Garden
Northgate City Park, north end of Fairhaven
Amador & Veronica Aguilar
Northgate New Direction Garden
3193 Silverton Rd. NE Salem, OR
Pastor Dell & Wil Parker
503-983-5583 or 503-584-1637
Redeemer Community Garden
4663 Lancaster Drive NE
Baxter Hill Community Garden
1770 Baxter Road SE
FULL for 2014
EDEN: Eat. Discover. Educate. Nurture.
4890 32nd Ave. SE
590 Elma St. SE
Sarah Owens & Michael Livingston
South Salem Friends Community Garden
1140 Baxter Rd. SE
FULL for 2014
Southeast Salem Neighborhood Garden
410 19th St. NE
Marcia Hoak & Rob Gould
St. Francis Community Garden
1820 Berry St. SE
FULL for 2014
Sunnyside Community Garden
Sunnyside and Valleywood SE
Sunnyslope Community Garden
4201 Liberty Rd. S.
Norm Reiss & Sally Cook
Ellen Lane Community Garden
3100 Garrett Dr. NW
FULL for 2014
Orchard Heights Community Garden
Orchard Heights City Park, NW
Heather Burns & Jane Lamb
West Salem Boys & Girls Club Community Garden
925 Gerth St. NW
Clearlake UMC Community Garden
7920 Wheatland Rd.
John Knox Community Garden
452 Cummings Lane N
Mary Jo Emmett
Southeast Keizer Community Garden
1045 Candlewood Drive NE
Rickman Community Garden
930 Chemawa Rd. NE
Whittam Community Garden
5205 Ridge Drive NE
Ian Niktab & Erubiel Valladares
Silverton Grange Garden
Aumsville Community Garden
965 Olney St.
Mill City Community Garden
Kimmel Park, Mill City
Stayton Community Garden
N. 4th Ave. & E. Florence St.
St. Joseph's Community Garden
925 S. Main St. (Mt. Angel)
Grace Baptist Community Garden
1855 Ellendale Ave.
Gathering Place Community Garden
1247 SE Uglow St.
Grande Ronde Community Garden
825 Grande Ronde Rd.
Marion-Polk Food Share | 1660 Salem Industrial Dr. NE | Salem | OR | 97301