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June 1 - 15, 2005

Issue #76

  .........................Buffalo's Best Fiend
   

The CyberCloset
A Chance Encounter

by Allan Uthman

 
Monkey Business
A Different Kind of Crusade
by Matt Taibbi
 
Jack Davis vs China
Trade Protectionist Gets His Party Started
by Matt Higgins
 
War on Drugs or Just War?
Plan Colombia Stays Aloft
by John Myers
 

Newsreek
Anonymous Sources Under Fire--Sometimes

by Matt Taibbi

 

Lonely Revolution
Free Buffalo, but Nobody's Buying

by Matt Higgins

 

Are You an Evil Genius?
Take the Quiz
by N. Sorrenti

 

Get Your Blog On
Helpful Tips
for Newbies

 
  
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Buffalo in Briefs
Separated At Birth
Page 3
Blind Date Scenario
Beast-O-Scopes
Kino Korner
[SIC] - Your Letters
 
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ECMC Home:
Grannies & Gomers 4 Sale

One of Joel Giambra’s greatest accomplishments was converting Erie County Medical Center into a public benefit corporation. A PBC is supposed to be “more flexible.” By privatizing money making services and eliminating programs that drain the public coffers, the ECMC PBC promised to lead the County down a primrose path of financial security. Clearly, we’re not on that path quite yet.

Maybe the chaos surrounding the County budget made the recent announcement of the closure of the Erie County Home, which is run by ECMC, seem to be a result of financial mismanagement. However, the reality is that programs like the Home were put on the chopping block as soon as ECMC became a PBC.  

“The things I’m doing will decrease ECMC’s reliance on the county subsidy,” New ECMC CEO Michael Young told Buffalo Business First earlier this year, “I hope to run the hospital like a business. There’s no reason why you can’t run a not-for-profit hospital like a business.”

Of course, if you were in private business and found yourself running the fourth largest nursing home in New York State with clients who were in many cases indigent, that wouldn’t be very good business, would it? Why the hell should government be in the business of taking care of people who are old, poor, or worse yet, victims of severe head trauma? Many of these folks wound up in the Home because no one else wanted them. How can you make a profit off of people who are too incapacitated to take care of themselves?

Perhaps Tom DeLay could help supply his colleagues with the answer: Terry Schiavo. Right-to-lifers loved the fearless Delay when he summoned the Presidential Prayer Team to deliver a miracle in the case of Schiavo. Of course, the only miracle was that DeLay’s ethical charges took a backseat for a week or two. Now that Schiavo has met her eternal reward, perhaps DeLay would care to take a trip up here to explain why it’s our moral obligation as a society to prevent Schiavo from dying, while we boot hundreds of seniors into the street in service of the bottom line.

Taking that business model one step further, maybe the County could bid out County Home residents on Ebay. Maybe some of the grannies over there still have enough needlework skill left in them to be transferred to someplace like Honduras. Maybe some of those head trauma victims could be picked up for guinea pig duty by private contractors in Iraq. How about taking out life insurance policies on the old feebs before turning them out? Just because you believe in the right to life doesn’t necessarily mean that you believe life shouldn’t be filled with misery and suffering. Like ECMC’s new CEO said, “There’s no reason why you can’t run a not-for-profit hospital like a business.” No reason whatsoever.

After all, hospitals are too important to be left to the oversight of medical doctors. Doctors fail to understand that all of the liberal Hippocratic oath nonsense that they were taught in medical school by their radical-activist professors has nothing to do with the “real world,” and “running it like a business.”

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