Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Buying a Radio Dog Fence

Our Lab/Setter, Juliette, has proven quite the escape artist. She has triumphantly learned how to defeat the physical fences with which we have surrounded her - by leaping, scrambling, digging, and chewing.

So tonight I went to the pet store and spend a few hundred dollars on an "invisible" electronic fence system. You bury a big wire loop around the perimeter of your yard, and when the dog gets too close she gets a warning buzzer and then an electric pain in the neck.

I live in fear she will learn to defeat this too. Perhaps she will pay our other dog to chew the radio collar off her neck.

I must admit I haven't yet
Found a way to stop Juliette.

Monday, May 30, 2005

Parade and Charade

It was a gorgeous day for our 10k neighborhood race, and the race was followed by a Memorial Day Parade which is a very small neighborhood affair - with just one band this year. Our alderman was in the parade, as was our congressman.

Well, most of us knew our alderman, this being Chicago. But few of us recognized our congressman, Dan Lipinski, who became our congressman in a very special way.

You have to understand that our congressional district is solidly Democratic. Once you have the Democratic nomination, you have the general election in the bag.

Dan's father, Bill Lipinski, was our existing congressman. Bill won the Democratic primary in 2004. But then he announced he was retiring before the election. So local Democratic bosses needed to appoint someone as their new candidate.

They picked Dan, who hadn't lived in the Chicago area for 15 years. They picked him unanimously, after 15 minutes of formal consideration. (More details here and here.)

In matters of Chicago Politics
Never underestimate the Fix.

Sunday, May 29, 2005


Our friends the French have voted down the new EU constitution.

"Treaty opponents built an ad hoc coalition of the disgruntled by bashing the United States, Turks, immigration in general, Eurocrats and free-market capitalism."

It's amusing to me that the EU would be seen as allied with free-market capitalism, since it is so regulation-prone. Perhaps in the big picture the EU would still foster a freer economy than the one France currently languishes under.

France has a long-standing unemployment rate of 10 percent. The people are understandably unhappy about that. But maybe they should take notice that our unemployment rate is much lower.

To drop your unemployment rate,
Apply to join the United States.

Ohio's Coin Collection

"The director of Ohio’s workers’ compensation bureau resigned under pressure Friday over the disappearance of at least $10 million worth of rare coins that the agency had bought as an investment." (Story here.)

It's more than a little strange
To lose ten million dollars in change.

One head better than two

For the first time in recorded surgical history, someone with craniopagus parasiticus has survived an operation to remove her second head. The little girl is apparently doing well. For creepy photo of pre-surgical two-headed state, click here.

Masterful skill with a knife
Instead of killing, saves a life.

Sith Reflection

What's up with
The Sith?
They get the strongest powers,
But their faces all turn sour.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Private Stem Cell Research

The other day in the comments section, Marnee brought up the fact that the Federal limits on stem cell research did not apply to privately funded research, just to federally funded research. She brought up the possibility that the private research might be very substantial, just under-reported by the mainstream media.

Today I read a chicagoboyz post quoting a Wall St. Journal editorial which gave some projections:

"Then there's the private sector. According to Navigant Consulting, the U.S. stem-cell therapeutics market will generate revenues of $3.6 billion by 2015. Some 70 companies are now doing stem-cell research, with Geron, ES Cell International and Advanced Cell Technologies being leaders in embryonic research. Clinical trials using embryonic stem-cell technologies for spinal cord injuries are due to begin sometime next year."

You know, I don't like the phrase "private sector." Somehow it always sounds like the economy is a pie, some of which is baked by private outfits, and some of which is baked by public outfits, in a friendly sort of competition.

I wish the public sector
Would stick to the role of protector.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Spread of Abuse

It's funny how abuse has spread in my lifetime. Not the thing, just the word, "abuse." When I was a kid, we just didn't use the word the way we do now. There was no drug abuse, no sex abuse, no wife abuse, no verbal abuse. There was drug addiction, molestation, wife-beating, and insults. The thing about "abuse" is that it's so damned vague. If you "beat" your wife, well, I have a pretty good idea what you're doing. If you "abuse" your wife, well, I have hardly any idea. It can range anywhere from mild mistreatment to horrible battery and rape.

Koran abuse is the newest version. What's funny is that I don't recall the press adopting the phrase "American Flag Abuse" when protestors - here or abroad - burned it and trampled it. No. It was "Free Expression."

Treat the flag
Like a rag,
And it's just fair use.

But drop the Koran
In the can,
And that's abuse.

I wouldn't do either. But the media double-standard drives me crazy. And, most of all, I hate to see "abuse" creep into one more area of public discussion!

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

John Scissorthumbs

Today at work I was cutting a piece of plastic cable tie to serve as a makeshift collar stay.

I cut it, and stuck it in the collar slot, but the piece of plastic was still too long. So, leaving it in the collar slot, and holding it with my left hand, I reached up with the scissors in my right hand and snipped the plastic.

Unfortunately, after cutting through the plastic, the blades of the scissors continued forcefully into the skin of my left thumb.

It's usually hard to get hurt
Improving the looks of your shirt.
You might say that was dumb.

But I claim I was clever
Not to actually sever
My thumb.

PS: Digit seems to be recovering well, after washing, bandaging, and a bit of antibiotic ointment.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005


Aristotle famously thought a story should begin in the middle of things, with the plot already moving along. It strikes me that George Lucas got this right when he started his first Star Wars movie with the story of Luke's coming of age.

I was very impressed by that movie, but I thank my lucky stars that I was already an adult when I saw it. This way, when I finally get around to seeing the latest prequel, I won't be having an experience of childhood hopes betrayed.

No prequel
Could equal
That first

Monday, May 23, 2005

PETA Kills Animals

At least, that's the story that's flying around the blogosphere. I picked it up from the estimable Robert Bidinotto.

Here's the AP version of the tale from back in 2000. So it's not really news. But they seem to run an animal "shelter" in Norfolk, VA. No, not one of those trendy no-kill shelters. The other kind.

Pets killed off by PETA.
The irony couldn't be sweetah.

Blocking Progress

"At birth the brain and spinal cord essentially contain their full measure of nerves, each fiber like a strand of gold in a bank that permits only withdrawals."

I think that's a potent metaphor for the human body's inability to regrow nerve cells. It's from Gen LaGreca's novel, Noble Vision, which I'm reading at the moment.

In real life we have a possible lead on a way to restore lost nerve cells: the use of stem cells. And we have some South Korean researchers who are hot on the trail.

They are pursuing the lead
At full speed:

"South Korean researchers reported Thursday they have created human embryos through cloning and extracted embryonic stem cells, the universal cells that scientists expect will result in breakthroughs in medical research." (From CNN.)

If American researchers chased down this path.
They would face the government's wrath.

Here in the U.S., we severely limit stem cell research. It seems that the U.S. Congress is now thinking about freeing it up somewhat. But one man stands in the way.

"PRESIDENT BUSH vowed yesterday to halt surprise new moves in Congress to lift the White House curbs on stem-cell research." (From Times Online.)

I hope the polls will give a downward push
To Mr. Bush.
And I hope he rethinks
A rule that stinks.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Campaign Regulation Pain

The FEC, the arm of the government that regulates campaign financing, is gearing up to regulate blogs. As a matter of fact, they have been ordered to do so by a judge. But they are taking comments from citizens until June 3rd. You can read a bluestater on the topic here, and a redstater on the topic here.

Do blogs deserve the same freedom as the press?
I say yes.

Childish Behavior

About a month ago I ran a trail marathon sponsored by Equestrian Connection. After the race, I was beat, so I didn't stay for the awards ceremony.

It turned out that I had taken 3rd place in my age group, and actually had an award coming: a glass tumbler etched with the name of the race and a picture of a horse.

So today I drove north for an hour and visited Liberty Farm, where the Equestrian Connection people do their charitable thing - helping kids with special needs ride horses. I saw some of the kids riding in the ring. They looked like they were enjoying themselves.

There is something very childish about spending 2 hours roundtrip driving to get a glass tumbler. But that's what I did, and it now occupies a spot on my wall of racing honors, which features a few awards and a lot of finisher's ribbons.

On reflection, there's something childish about a race
In the first place.

Or third place, or last.
But still, it's a blast.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Creative Spam Heading

I get a lot of spam. Hundreds a day. I usually just skim and mass-delete, but now and then a good headline catches my eye.

Today I liked this one:

Yeah, it's a sp@m, :)

They were selling XP for 50 dollars. Why do I think it's either a pirated copy or just a trick? But I'm amused by the open admission, combined with the linear smiley icon!

Wasn't it wily
To tack on the smiley?

Friday, May 20, 2005

Oceans of Emotion

I posted a bit about opera yesterday. Opera was something I didn't appreciate much until the last ten years or so. I've decided it has something in common with another genre that I've only come to like lately: Romance novels.

In both Romance novels and Operas, no matter what life-or-death split-second action is transpiring, there is always time to stop and spell out what the major characters are feeling... in considerable detail.

All that feeling
Leaves you reeling.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Opera's Troubles

There's an interesting article in today's Wall St. Journal, an opinion piece really, "The Slow Death of Grand Opera." The author, Robert W. Wilson, is a former chairman of the New York City Opera. He says that the big opera companies are losing money, and that a lot of the problem is the lack of new melodic operas. He believes that audiences would flock to new melodic operas, if we could just keep critics from trashing the pieces.

Here is his second-to-last sentence:

"If the new cannot be brought in and accepted, opera will probably go the way of poetry: an art that continues but is no longer at the heart of our cultural life."

Puts me in mind of the way I once opened a lecture:

Poetry today is dead.
All that's written, goes unread.

That's hyperbole, of course. Poetry does get read today. Just, not by most people.

Here is his last sentence:

"I am heartbroken by this possibility, because opera, with its blend of spectacle, drama, voice and orchestra, is the greatest art form ever devised by man."

I suppose the idea is that opera packs a mighty big wallop because it combines the verbal, visual, and musical arts. It strikes me that a movie with a good score delivers a similar combination punch.

Would the critics be mean
If another Joe Green*
Appeared on the scene?

*Giuseppe Verdi

kenshi and the blue screen

[info]kenshi recently fell prey to a Windows Security Update that badly discombobulated his pc.

Some think it's just a coincidence that right after he applied the update his computer got the blue screen of death.

You decide.
He applied a fix and his PC died.
I guess it could be chance,
And it's true he kind of rants,
But when your computer gets creamed
You've earned your right to scream.

(Just remember: when the wait-music is playing on the help-line, no one can hear you scream.)

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Star Wars Mania

Episode 3 opens at midnight tonight here in the Windy City. A co-worker of mine has tickets for the 4:30 AM showing. I'm only worried because Michael Wilmington at the Tribune gave it 4 stars. I tend not to agree with his reviews.

I suppose that stars are particularly appropriate for rating this movie.

I have a friend whose favorite movie is Jaws. He rates moves on a JAWS scale. A one-star movie is a J movie. A two-star movie is a JA movie. You get the idea. A truly excellent movies is a JAWS movie. There has only been one such movie, according to him, and that is Jaws itself.

I find numeric ratings
Vaguely grating.
Does ranking movies as trash or treasure
Really require cardinal measures?

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Going Gong

I was reading the USA print version of The Epoch Times today. It's a free newspaper that the Falun Gong people hand out. They're members of that Chinese meditation sect that is being actively oppressed by the People's Republic of China.

I was surprised to actually be interested in 2 of their cultural articles. One was about an opera version of Cyrano de Bergerac coming to New York. The authors were Sharon Kilarski and Irwin Lehat.

Here's the quote from the article that really struck me: "I remember being heartbroken after finding out that Rostand's play, the most amazing drama I'd ever read, was not considered the highest example of literature. Instead his crfeator is deemed, 'a French playwright known for his light and entertaining style.' Pooh!"

Pooh, indeed.

They also had an article on Camille Paglia's new book about poetry, Break Blow Burn. The reviewer was Christopher Nield. Summarizing one of Paglia's points, he writes:

"Students are brainwashed into believing there is no connection between word and thing; meaning is arbitrary and literature little more than a game."

True, indeed.

Maybe I need to start reading the Epoch Times with more care and regularity. They look like such nice people handing out the paper. So warm and calm. Maybe I could try meditating with them. Lots of Objectivists get into meditation. Some Objectivists even become attached to secularized Buddhism. How different can the Falun Gong be?

I bet it won't be long
Before the Falun Gong
Has me writing rhymes
For their Epoch Times.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Malkin rhymes about Newsweek

Michelle Malkin seems to have coined: Newsweek lied, people died.

She qualified that. She didn't really think they lied. She thinks they were just sloppy, and she couldn't resist mocking the "Bush Lied, People Died" bumpersticker slogan.

Then she followed up with: Newsweek retracts, public reacts.

Well, no qualifications needed on that. A lot of people think some bias was showing, too.

I wouldn't be in a rush
To stick a book in a toilet and flush.

It's bound to clog it - what a bummer.
You'll be feeling dumb and dumber.

And what on earth will you tell the plumber?

Return from St. John's

My wife and daughter called me from somewhere around Gary, Indiana, about half an hour ago, so they should be home soon. They were doing a one-day drive from Annapolis, Maryland, to Chicago.

From Maryland
To Gary-land
Is almost all the way
To Chicago, Illinois.

So I can safely say
That in a minute
The house will jump with joy
Because they're in it!

Forensic Gardening

I was watching a CSI rerun a few minutes ago. Chemical analysis of a young victim's blood shows a high level of PESTICIDES. They get get a warrant and search the family's gardening shed. The CSI technician looks at a bunch of plastic containers in the shed. The last one she looks at is labeled with a skull and crossbones - poison! - but is also clearly labeled as WEEDKILLER. She emerges triumphant with the weedkiller container as evidence.

Hey, guys, weedkiller is not a pesticide. Weeds are plants. Pests are bugs. I'm not much of a gardener, but that much I know.

After this botching
Of the investigation
I had to stop watching
Out of sheer frustration.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

The Suicide Tradition

The Guardian ran an article yesterday by Madeleine Bunting which tried to explain how suicide-bombing is descended from old tradition that Western Civilization has forgotten how to understand. (Thanks to John at Coldfury for the reference.)

"The west can only now kill from a distance - preferably from several thousand feet up in the air or several hundred kilometres away on an aircraft carrier. It is the very proximity of these suicide missions which is so shocking."

She needs to talk to some U.S. Marines on the ground in Iraq. I'm sure they're very familiar with the concept of killing the enemy up close and personal. And plenty of them would throw themselves on a grenade for their buddies. But they wouldn't be into committing suicide as a grand ideological statement.

So it's not the proximity. It's back to the ideology.

It's wrong ideas in the head
That make them long to be dead.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

South Side Second City Alumni Show

Tonight I went to see the South Side Second City Alumni Show at the local arts center. The performers are all former Second City members, all from the South Side of Chicago, many of them from my neighborhood. Probably the best known performer was George Wendt, who used to play Norm on Cheers.

Also on stage was Tim O'Malley, who tutored the improv troupe I was in. I would tell you the name of our troupe, except we could never quite agree on a name.

For a while it was Chicago Stew.
There were other names, too.

It's hard to achieve lasting fame
If your group keeps changing its name.

"Hug a Thug"

The cutest phrase I've heard today is: "Hug a Thug doesn't work." Apparently Michelle Malkin said it on Fox TV while she was talking about how to solve gang problems in the U.S.

"Hug a Thug" is a vividly jarring image, and it even rhymes.

Of course, a lot of our gang problems come from the fact that we've banned
Certain psychoactive substances for which there is a high demand.
So one good way to cut back on thugs
Is to legalize drugs.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Snack Attack

Strange foods in the news:

They finally tracked down the source of the fingertip in the bowl of Wendy's Chili. Remember the woman who claimed to find the finger? Well, the piece of finger really belonged to some guy her husband knew who sliced it off in a work accident.

What's funny is that earlier news stories said the finger was probably a woman's finger, based on its appearance. Now, I know for a fact, from watching CSI: Miami, that the CSI team would have known it was a guy's finger in a matter of hours!

In another startling development, a scientist has discovered a strange rodent that had never been classified scientifically. It is "different", as rodents go, and so it has been given its own "family" classification within the rodent order.

So how did the scientist discover this little beastie? In a Southeast Asian food market where it was being sold as a snack! (Hat tip to Paul Hsieh's GeekPress.)

This post is complete.
Now, watch what you eat.

Love Poem

Sometimes I feel
A cosmic force
You for me.

Fond fantasy,
Of course.

But the deep bond
Of passion
Is real as steel.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The 42nd Parallel

In our book club tonight we discussed The 42nd Parallel by John Dos Passos. The book was first published in 1930. I am not wild about the book, but it was interesting to me, partly because it has been so long since I read any American Naturalism. There is a somewhat disjointed story, but not a highly dramatic plot. The characters seem lacking in inner life and low on integrity.

The title is apparently a mystery. It may refer to Chicago, which is on the 42nd parallel. The author was born in Chicago, but did not grow up here. What's more, Chicago is the setting for a significant fraction of the story. But there is no reference to the darned parallel in the story itself. That would be too easy.

The 42nd Parallel -
What the hell
Is that supposed to mean?
Does it refer to the scenes
That go down in Chi-town?
Or is it a mystery
Forever lost in the mists of history?

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Chicago Traffic

Today's Chicago Sun-Times announced: "Chicago 7th in most time spent stuck in traffic"

Today's Chicago Tribune proclaimed: "Chicago is 2nd city of clog"

As you might expect, these headlines are based on the same study done by the Texas Transportation Institute.

Why the discrepancy?
It's hard to explain.
But it doesn't matter to me
Because I take the train.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Fake Hate

Here's an interesting blog post by La Shawn Barber about fake hate crimes.  We had a big fake hate crime at a college here in Illinois recently.  Turned out the racist messages sent to young black women... were from another young black woman... who was homesick.

I agree with LSB that having laws against "hate crimes" is a bad idea.  But put that aside.  Here's my question: is a fake hate crime, still a hate crime?

Just because I scrawl racist threats, it's not really a hate crime unless I mean it, is it?

As for the real stuff,
There's more than enough.
But some still make
Hate that's fake.

Sunday, May 08, 2005


We had dinner for my mom at my house, with many family members in attendance.

I cooked. After all, it's Mother's Day, and my wife is a mother, so she shouldn't have to cook.

Well, really, I only cooked one thing.

I grilled the steaks -
That's all it took;
Somehow that makes
Me the main cook.


Jewtopia is a play, or perhaps a very long skit, about a couple of guys who both want to marry Jewish women. One of the guys is Jewish, the other Gentile. As the play opens, the Gentile is pretending to be Jewish in order to pickup women at a Jewish Singles dance.

I saw it tonight. It's playing in LA, NYC, FLA, and Chicago. It endlessly trades in stereotypical humor about Jewish people, but of the in-joke rather than anti-semite variety. If you are offended by this sort of thing, do not see this play!

I thought the first act was funny but not uproarious. It got uproarious in the second act, where Brandy McClendon got to play a teenage girl who wants nothing to do with her family. She had me in stitches.

She was the perfect disgruntled teen
Wanting OUT of her parents' scene.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Barium Swallow

The other day I was the subject of a very cool medical test at the University of Chicago Hospital.  They put me on a moving x-ray machine and had me chug barium-sulfate strawberry shakes while a radiologist took pictures of  my throat and esophagus in action.  The doc reacted in real-time to what he saw, and put me in different positions to try to get the best view.

I had recently experienced some difficulty in swallowing on occasion.  In my case it turned out to be something relatively minor.  I was relieved at the diagnosis, since there are all kinds of things, some very nasty, that can interfere with normal swallowing.  I knew about all these nasty things, because I had googled the topic sufficiently to be in a proper state of suspense.

Google your symptoms for a good fright -
Something to keep you up all night!

Now I'm mostly worried about what the bill will look like. That big machine represented a huge capital investment. And I sure swallowed a lot of those strawberry-barium shakes. I bet those cost more than the shakes at McDonalds.

Yum, yum, yum!

Friday, May 06, 2005


Yesterday, at 3:30 in the morning, somebody threw some crude grenades in front of the British Consulate in New York. The explosion blew out a window.

There's a security-camera video of the event.  It shows a bicyclist, a female jogger, and a taxi.  A female jogger at three a.m.!  That's a good example of why they call it the City that Never Sleeps. 

Anyway, the police are hoping these people will come forward as
witnesses.  But they haven't.  Either they're all in on the
grenade conspiracy, or more likely the famous New Yorker "don't get
involved" philosophy is in force.

I've lived in New York.  A lot of people there are not like
that.  But you hear "don't get involved" a lot more in New York
than in Chicago for some reason.  I'm not sure why.

How can a case be solved
If no one will get involved?

Thursday, May 05, 2005

The Numerological Threat

Today is May 5, 2005. That's 5/5/05. Do you know what that means?

One year, one month, and one day from now, it will be 6/6/06.

I'm not worried about the second coming. But I'm worried about all the biblical blather I can expect to hear as 6/6/06 approaches. My brain is already beginning to heat up in anticipation.

Biblical blather,
Pass me by!
Find some other other
Mind to fry.

The death of Greener's Law

There's an old expression, called Greener's Law: Never argue with a man that buys ink by the barrel.

The idea is that arguing with someone like a newspaper columnist is hopeless, because he can "out-shout" you with his voluminous and well-distributed out-pourings.

That changed with the coming of the political blogs. Now a lot of newspaper columnists sound positively frightened when they complain about being picked on by bloggers.

The power of ink
Started to sink
When words took flight
On screens of light.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

The Clown's Lament

Joey "The Clown" Lombardo is a reputed gangster in Chicago. The Feds indicted him recently, but they have not been able to find him. Today the local news had a story about a letter that apparently came from Lombardo. He offered to surrender - if certain conditions were met.

Part of the letter:

"Judge I am in dire strate at this time at 76 yr old to live my life peaceful until I die."

I'm always a little amazed when mobsters say things like "I just want to live my life in peace," and adopt a "poor me" attitude when something bad happens to them.

I worked for the mob.
It was just a job.
Why do the Feds
Want my head?

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Amazon Concordance

I was looking for the first time at the Amazon Concordance Page
of my novel.  The concordance itself is misleading in one respect,
that it includes the page headings when doing its word counts. 
"Unholy" and "quest", do not really appear much in the text of the
book.  "Enright" never really appears in the text, and "John"
occurs rarely.

What really amused me was my computerized readability ratings.  I
got a Flesch-Kincaid Index of 4.1, which would suggest the book can be
read by 4th graders!  I hope none of them are reading it.

Another funny feature on the page is the SIPs (Statistically Improbable
Phrases).  I scored only two: "float board" and "cotton
shift".  All that puzzles me is why these are improbable. 
Partly it's that these objects figured in the story line, and that's

I'm glad to give a lift
To the use of "cotton shift".

The Marxist Professor Case

One of the peculiar points of contention between Kelley and Peikoff is that of the "Marxist Professor." Peikoff holds that such a man cannot be honestly mistaken - that he is evading the truth. Kelley holds that you don't have enough information to pass judgment.

I suppose I disagree with both of them, in the following sort of way. Given current history, and the Marxist academics I have known, I do pass a presumptive judgment of intellectual dishonesty. I am willing to be convinced otherwise in any particular case, but I'm going in with a strong presumption of "guilt". I'm not going to assume that he shoplifts. I'm not going to assume that he is consumed with envy. But I'm going to assume a certain kind of fact-unfriendliness in his political views.

We don't have subpoena power over anyone else's innermost thoughts. We rarely get to play Father Confessor to our ideological opponents. We go ahead and make judgments anyway, because that's what minds do - they make judgments. And even if you try to withhold your conscious judgment, your subconscious will make an emotional evaluation for you.

Judgments come in degrees of certainty, of course, ranging from educated guess-work to logical proof. I think my presumption of "guilt" falls closer to the educated-guess side.

Imagine a Marxist Professor
Who never goes to a confessor.
Can one conclude
He's a dishonest dude?
You can if you are a good guesser.

Monday, May 02, 2005


Dan Barber has a review of my novel up over at theAtlasphere.com.  I'm very happy about the review, since Dan enjoyed the book and really "got" it.  

As far as I can figure out, you need to be a member to read the
review.  But it's free to join, and they have a lot of interesting
columns on a wide variety of topics.

I'm always glad to get a reviewer
Who offers praise,
Rather than calling for me to be skewered
And braised!

Noble Vision

That's the title of a book by Gen (Genevieve) LaGreca, who I had the pleasure to meet a week ago at the ballet.

I have obtained a copy and just started looking at it. She has
endorsements from Milton Friedman, Walter Williams, Steven Forbes,
and Edith Packer. Visit Gen LeGreca's website for more detail.

The minimalized plot summary looks to be:

Amazing ballerina has a horrible accident. Heroic neurosurgeon
has a revolutionary technique that can repair her injuries. The
New York State health bureacracy won't let him do it. It's a love
story and a health-care drama.

Sounds like the stem-cell mess to me. But done up with Randian
Romanticism. (I say all this after reading about 10 pages.)

Just to give you a prose sample:

"Walking to her gate, she didn't hear the sterile music piped through
the loudspeaker. Instead, she hummed a joyous melody from the
first ballet she had ever seen, at age six, sitting with a group of
vagabond children."

Get the government out of our wealth,
And out of our health.