New short story! A holiday classic! Holy text of the Archussip religion! What?

A brand-new short story has gone up for the holiday season! In chapter 7 of Wandering Fortunes, the religion of Archussip was mentioned and talked about. This is the holy text of that religion. It is a moral-addled story of why you should obey the invisible pony sky god, Gourd, and why They are so great and why science is so bad? And also, Hollywood?

I wouldn’t call it a mess, per se… I’d call it a religious text. Archussipism is a religion rivaling that of, say, Scientology, or Mormonism, or… Catholicism.

feel free to tell me what you think!!

Universal Health Coverage

I read this article from The Nation: Medicare-for-All Isn’t the Solution for Universal Health Care. Now, despite the initial thoughts that might come from that title, it’s a pretty good article. It’s partly why I never refer to it as Medicare-for-All. I’ve sold Medicare plans, I know that it’s usually not enough. I usually say Single-Payer, but the article also points out that’s a broad term and not entirely accurate to the many forms of universal health coverage found in all the other 1st-world countries. I mostly use the term as a springboard, then, I think–a phrase isn’t a policy, but it’s an idea to start from.

However, I’m not a policy maker, nor an economist, or a health care professional of any kind. I’m just a weird writer. I’ve also sold health insurance so I can definitely tell you how health insurance sucks. But I’m not one for solutions. That’s why we elect policy makers, really!

I don’t expect a candidate for anything to have a fully fleshed-out 100% complete ready-to-go let’s-just-vote plan, but I certainly expect support for creation of such a plan. Single-Payer is a good way to start.

If anything, I just don’t want to have to go through private corporations in order to pay for something I need.

(And I quite like the ideas laid out near the end of that article in the second-to-last section.)

A brief…ish metaphor for the USA times

Say you enter a cafe for lunch. Not a café, of course, because it’s hard to add those little symbols to letters while typing and the French suck–this is America, gaddfern it–in fact, we just start pronouncing cafe “cayff”. So anyway, you enter a cayff and want something to food.

How about a salad? Well, you’ve heard some weird stuff about it, some people say the lettuce wasn’t protected against disease and the tomatoes are mushy, but you checked and the lettuce was protected against disease although questions were brought up over the–I’m gonna say some kind of spray that protected it against disease? I don’t know can you imagine injecting lettuce with a needle? I looked it up and apparently a needle was found in some Romanian lettuce but I mean ha ha where even is Romania? Is it in Rome? I also found this which is adorable.

bunny

Also you checked and the tomatoes are mushy but, still, overall very healthy, very nice. I actually don’t like salads but I assume most people find them edible!

It turns out this cayff only serves one thing at a time, and it only changes every four years (usually). What it serves is decided upon by all the customers who happen to be there at the time. Whichever side is loudest most populous is what is served for those four years. Everyone seems to be focusing on two dishes though, neither of which is the salad. You ask a waiter about it, and they shrug. You ask a few more waiters, and then finally you ask someone who has eaten at the cayff before and they explain that the salad is available down in the basement past a rickety set of stairs, through a flooded passageway, over a wobbly wooden rope bridge over a chasm, and through a Roman gladiator coliseum. They put it there, and nobody ever took the salad, and so they left it there.

You manage to see it using some binoculars or something, and yep, it would be really hard to notice unless you go around asking and looking. No wonder no one goes for it.

You also notice a plate of butter-fried butter covered in nickels with a side of no health care.

Okay, you go back upstairs. What’s the two dishes everyone else is looking at? Well, one of them is an orange Skittle. A giant orange Skittle. That’s poisoned.

why are we eating here again

Okay, okay, okay, what about the other one? Hey, it’s a steak! That’s pretty good, right? It has a side of white bread sogged up with grease and a big hole cut in the center so it’s mostly just the crust, but maybe you won’t have to eat that. Maybe you can just eat the steak.

Although… now that you are remembering, your friend ate here a little while ago for breakfast. They had two steaks available, but one included a fruit salad, though there were some hard bits in the steak. The other steak–the one that is now available for lunch–was actually made of rat meat. Or pigeon meat, or whatever you want to say. Now, they’re saying this lunch steak is not made of that stuff. It is 100% grade-A beef, and it even offers some of the fruit from the fruit salad.

You don’t see the fruit salad, though (they say it’s coming), and you can’t be sure they’re telling the truth about the content of the steak. Sure, your friend could have been lying, but why would they lie, and also, I only said it was a friend because I thought this story might be inconsistent if you’d eaten here before. The breakfast metaphor doesn’t even work all that well. Also, some of the steak’s friends showed up and are dropping hints that the steak would go ahead with the TPP anydangway.

Let’s take a brief moment to reiterate the orange Skittle was poison. Also I can’t actually tell if Skittle is the singular form or if it really is just Skittles overall. Also Skittles is starting to look really weird. Oh yeah and by the way orange is my least favorite Skittle flavor. Actually I don’t like orange-flavored most things. Yet they always seem so common.

What was I talking about? Oh, right, the steak.

So maybe the steak is cool now? Maybe it won’t be rotten and stuffed with money? Maybe it won’t be soaked in oil and cooked in coal?

To push this metaphor unnecessarily further, everyone is divided into tables and each table’s vote is homogeneous, the plurality vote of the table is considered the general vote. You get dumped at a table full of people who don’t think that Skittle is poisonous. You might as well drum up awareness of the salad. The more people who know, the closer we can get to having more choices.

The steak may turn out fine. It may turn out figgin excellent. And the salad could even turn out mediocre. But the range of possibilities seems more positive for the salad.

THIS METAPHOR STOPPED BEING BRIEF HALF AN HOUR AGO I APOLOGIZE

Health Cake System

Let’s say you have a cake. Let’s say you have the Greatest Cake in the World. Now let’s say that cake is covered in rotten maggots. You must get through the rotten maggots to get to the cake. Maybe you can pay the rotten maggots to bring you the cake? Maybe some want to actually train the maggots and dress them in tiny waiter suits and make them carry tiny plates around? Maybe they’re still maggots?

Some people have pretty good cakes. Maybe not the best, but it’s good. You can have as much as you want, too; just pay the entrance fee. Maybe that maggot cake has an entrance fee, but you’re actually paying for people later on, those people have to pay the maggots anyway, and there are people outside ranting about how the bakery is going to be demolished any day and the only way to prevent it is to give the maggots complete control of the cake.

On one hand, I just now realized I’m basically calling insurance companies maggots and feel I should apologize, but on the other hand, I really don’t think I want to.

Anyway, let’s say you have Greatest Cake etc. but without maggots, but it’s on top of a mountain. Sure, you could buy a helicopter to fly up there and get it, but what if  all you can afford to help you climb is a rusty shovel covered in blood and a big maggot that failed its driving test? What if someone says they’ll pay for those tools, though? What if someone says they’ll buy you a whole helicopter? Oh. The maggot is flying the helicopter. Well, shoot.

Anyway, it turns out the entire time the cake was a fake and was actually a craps table in a casino, and you can bet money on how much cake you get. Then it turns out you spent a lot of money and got a lot of cake but you’re not even hungry now. The person next to you had no money to bet and is really hungry. And then the metaphor breaks down because, I mean, the cake-winner could just give some cake to the hungry person, right? Because we as humans would ever do such a thing?? I mean the cake goes bad at the end of the year so you have to bet again for some and everyone has to do it at the same time in a short period so it’s UTTER CHAOS

Dear the U.S., aka where I live: can you eliminate the middleman on health care please. I work for one, and I won’t mind!