Monday, April 07, 2008

Monday Musings

It's a little late in the day, but I had a lot of things written down that were notable and needed mentioning.

Freshest in my memory is a most excellent NCAA basketball championship game. Congratulations to the Kansas Jayhawks. To the Memphis Tigers; better luck next year. Now get out there and practice those free throws. I'm sure that Jimmy V is smiling in Heaven, 25 years after his Wolfpack worked similar magic on a seemingly invulnerable Phi Slama Jama.

In the beating a dead horse department, Rick Wagner twice tried to resurrect a "controversy" about the City's choice of it's own Fire Department over private companies to provide Emergency Medical Services to the City and surrounding areas.

The first was a cheap attempt at equating the provision of EMS with that of trash pickup service. Rick has a background in law enforcement; unfortunately, sometimes he adopts an approach to public safety that belies his past experience. Briefly, my take on this is:

EMS is a fully vested partner in an active and responsive community public safety
system. It resides at a equal level with Police, Fire, and Emergency Management as a critical, baseline responsibility of government to provide for in a professional and accountable manner.

A profit motive is incompatible with the essential mission of public safety. When the focus is shifted from the needs of the citizen and the community at large, service delivery is negatively impacted and the system suffers.

Rick's second post seemed more of a target rant toward Jim Doody's commissioner candidacy.
A much more comprehensive and interactive version of this debate and its' key talking points is available on the Sentinel's Community site.

Pay particular attention to the comments from reader John B., who seemed to succeed rather well at defending the city's decision in the face of what degraded to name-c
alling by those who fail to see the essential role of EMS as a full, equal member of the public safety system, or can't see past the divisive rhetoric that is now a staple of the steady diet of hate present on many AM radio talk shows and news programs.

For anyone wishing a somewhat comedic, yet historic representation of the issues, click here.

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Today's non-profit provider of Good Works is the Marillac Clinic.
This 20-year old resource, sponsored by the Sisters of Charity, provides health care services on a sliding scale fee basis to those who cannot afford this care elsewhere, and/or the health insurance that would otherwise cover it.

It's my understanding that a significant number of their clients are employed by one of the county's largest employers.
These employees have benefits, but the costs associated with this employer's group health insurance are too expensive for the wages that many of these workers are paid.

Excellent job, Marillac. Your efforts at providing reasonably-priced health care for those who need it helps in its' own way to keep down costs and hospital visits, including those who would otherwise go to the Emergency Room for care.
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Another example of a good work is the excellent Sentinel column by retired judge Joan Woodward, in which we are all encouraged to make the time to make our voices heard in those public meetings and annual forums and discussions that impact the nature of growth in our community.

Going to bed. Tomorrow will be a day for reflecting, supporting, and remembering, and then to move forward.

1 comment:

Gene Kinsey said...

John,

I'll say a prayer for you and your family today.

I admire your courage and your ability to be present for your son.

You are a thoughtful and insightful writer and your blog adds a lot to our cummunity blog list.