AN ANECDOTE WITH RESONANCE
Re: Reid Collins’s The MRI and I:
Having my years of “heavy age,” I’ve had to endure a number of medical tests — especially after the discovery of cancer. I, too, have had an MRI.
I have a ringing in my left ear and I’ve had it since I first noticed it in college. After all these years, I asked my ENT physician if anything could be done. She immediately ordered the MRI to see if the problem was in the inner ear.
We tried a “closed” MRI first; but my elbows were painfully being pushed into my ribcage before I was all the way into the tube. So next was the “open” MRI.
An “open” MRI is much like a “closed” one except you have much greater room to rest your arms and you can see light coming in from the room itself. Nevertheless, the top of the scanner is still only two or three inches from your nose.
In my case, they put my head in a cage which was then bolted upon the table. I admitted to the nurses that in my old age I have become claustrophobic. (I have no idea where this came from) One the nurses then put a dry washrag over my eyes. “People who don’t like tight spaces find this helps.” With the instructions to always keep still, I was slid into the machine.
As warned, it made a terrible racket. At times it was almost frightening. Staying still required some willpower. But what was the most horrible was the intense disorientation. After a few short minutes, I could not tell how much time had past. Many times I wondered if forty minutes had past or only four or five. I honestly couldn’t tell. The music I had counted on to help me know how much time I had left to endure was completely inaudible. I couldn’t see. I couldn’t hear. I had no sense of time. I couldn’t think of anything much past the noise. I remembered the passage from Matthew’s gospel: “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'”
I almost begged to be let out several times; but I didn’t want to give up the effort I had already made. “Go to your happy place. Go to your happy place.” Funny, I had never considered exactly what my “happy place” was before.
Suddenly, the machine became quiet and I was being pulled out of the MRI. “Stay still, Mr. Dooley, we’re putting the contrast fluid in your arm and then we’ll put you back in for just three more pictures. Once returned into the MRI, I suddenly realized that I had no idea how long “three pictures” took. Was it longer than what I had just been through? Was it less?
It was a bad as it was before; but, thankfully, it ended. After being taken out of the machine and freed from the table, it was wonderful to see light and hear normal sounds.
Not remembering how I got there, I almost walked into another man’s room where he was sitting in a thick leather easy chair. The room was dim and his nurse was giving him some pills in a cup. My nurse quickly turned me the right way. “That man is being sedated for his MRI,” she said. “When they are tranquilized, often times they don’t even remember being in the MRI.” Now they tell me.
Don’t get me wrong. Modern medicine is a wonderful thing. But that “sedated” MRI? I’ll keep that in mind if there is a next time.
— Mike Dooley
AN EFFICIENT WAY TO WASTE
Re: Eric Peters’s Safety Inefficiency:
Finally I have been vindicated. This has been my mantra for so many years. The other part of the emission laws is that they are not needed. The engine should be cared for, serviced and clean. No emissions come from these cars. I saw a ten year old Buick way back when they were first starting to engineer the cataylic converter. The fellow was a Sears Service Man working at my home. He insisted the above was true and led me to his car, opened the hood. There in front of me was a shining gorgeous engine which he swore gave out no exhaust.
Florida has just passed a higher emission control bill. These people do not know what they are doing. California could be out of debt by taking the gas and oil caps off and let the millions flow. Barney Frank helped ruin our economy by giving to the poor and asking us to pay. Did they fire the idiot? He is still handling our tax money. Insane.
— Sarah Baynes
Re: W. James Antle, III’s Country Clubbing for Growth:
The tension between pure ideology and pragmatism creates a tightrope few can easily walk. The rare politician who can walk it is the only hope for the GOP. Certainly Ronald Reagan (before, through and after the presidency) was one; Governor Jindal looks to be another. Too often though, Republicans embrace posers who speak the language of limited government then fold to the powerful winds blowing out of the left. Both Bushes are a fine example of this. Senator Specter hardly bothers to even pay lip service to conservative and limited government ideas.
When given a choice between possibly losing an election by standing on principle or winning by seriously compromising principle, the former is a less costly. If the true conservative loses, a Democrat can be held responsible for actions of the office. This holds a possibility of a day of reckoning and another chance to elect a true believer. Compromising and winning gives Congress a RINO who will often vote with the Left; come Election Day the Republicans are stuck with running an unprincipled representative who does not represent the constituency or losing to the Democrats. So, by running a principled person, the GOP has a chance to have true representation every other cycle or they can run the RINO and guarantee that their ideology will not be represented or put to a vote for at least two election cycles. Running a RINO simply is a bad bet.
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York
THE OTHER TRUE ORIGINS
Re: Peter Wallison’s The True Origins of This Financial Crisis:
Now, I would like to see two pieces of evidence to support your thesis rather than mere verbiage.
1. What are the loss rates for owner occupied homes in the inner city? Well, before those people lost their jobs due to the failure of the markets. From my preliminary examination, those areas have, by far, some of the lowest foreclosure rates. And if you take out the fraudulent mortgages — the ones where the broker doctored the application, the rate goes even lower.
2. The most damage has been done because banks packaged the risk and sold it to other institutions. If they did not do that, we would not be having the current problem. In fact, the banks that kept the risk, and thus kept normal lending practices are doing just fine thank you. Then they came up with Credit Default Swaps which also did more damage than foreclosures. That is purely the result of Republican deregulation. The only thing that Clinton did was to not veto that act. These instruments account for 10 times more money than defaulted mortgages, and their bastard offspring, derivatives, account for 100 times that amount.
Perhaps you will correct me on these matters.
I do not suppose that you will bother to address this.
— Doug Nusbaum
EFFECTIVE FOR ALL
Re: Peter Ferrara’s Repeal Health Care Fascism:
Yes, I have read the article “Repeal Health Care Fascism.” Now I would like for you to tell us how to go about a crusade to the Federal Coordination Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research. It is extremely important to be heard and to send the message out that our health care costs are rising and we need to find a solution for all of us — not just the selected ones. Not everyone gets the news and I for one would like to have each American have the right to speak out or what it takes to change this.
— Carol Kennedy
I’m so happy living in ObamaLand… It’s kind of like DisneyLand, except everything here is free. Whenever I want something, I just charge it to my USA Credit Card, and it goes directly onto the National Debt. The cool thing is that this Debt never has to be repaid! It’s just handed down from generation to generation, like an old piece of furniture that nobody likes but can’t throw away. I feel bad that FDR didn’t know as much about economics as we do today….He could have avoided the Depression, and also WWII, as most historians agree that the Depression led to the World War.
I wish everybody could join me in ObamaLand, but for now it’s limited to federal employees like me.
BOB DYLAN, THE OLD AXELROD
Re: Brett Joshpe’s Slickness With a Straight Face:
To paraphrase Bob Dylan’s “A Sweetheart Like You,” lie a little and they throw you in jail/ lie a lot and they make you king (or least a president).
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York