Happy New Year from the Hospital

As I’m still stuck in (and blogging from) the hospital this New Years Eve, I will wish that all the rest of the blogging world remains OUT of the hospital this New Years Eve and hope you can remain in that condition throughout this next year. So I’ll wish you a Very Happy (and sensibly drinking) New Year.

A night, and two weeks at the Tallaght Hospital

What started as a regular stressful holiday season has, by way of my lousy diet while I toil away in Dublin, was made more ‘thrilling’ when in the early morning hours of the Tuesday prior to Christmas I was shocked into awareness of my shortness of breath, and a racing heart rate. As I am not normally in this condition I panicked and began pacing the room.

Knowing this was a dangerous sign, I tried to step through all the conditions that would cause my symptoms, heartburn, blocked sinuses, heart attack, stroke. None of which managed to reduce my heart rate, and the only thing that made me feel better, was standing and pacing the apartment. Believing I could not self-diagnose my problem further, I googled the nearest hospital that I thought I could drive myself to, and found the Tallaght Hospital.

Having managed to get to Tallaght, and finding myself lost in the shopping mall parking lot without signage to the hospital entrance. I did manage to find the A&E entrance by about 4:00AM and into the parking garage which was conveniently located across from the entrance.

I entered, and spoke to the receptionist, and the took my information, and then I sat in the waiting room with a very few others who appeared to be awaiting on other admitted patients. It was really only moments before the duty nurse called me, and I explained my situation. And she attached me to an EKG with more wires that the average computer would need. The appearance of worry on her experienced face did not ease my own concern, but she did manage to explain with confidence what she was doing. I was admitted into a recovery area in the A&E and given several drugs to assist my heart and blood pressure, and monitored for about 6 hours before they were satisfied, and I was moved into a corridor and there I remained for another 6 hours, being fed, and monitored while they found me a room to move to.

And this constitutes the fun part of the visit, from there, the story is more boring than interesting. If you ever get sick, don’t do it during the holidays, between the vacation, and holiday days off, almost no ‘testing’ gets done, and without testing, your treatment does not progress rapidly. Mind you I’m almost certain this has little to do with the staff, as everyone has been all of professional, curious, friendly and even humorous (not in a ‘Scrubs’ way). But I place these delays on the management, as their ‘ability’ to schedule, and resource manage the hospital facilities seems to absent. Perhaps it is just the holidays, but my testing and final treatments could have freed up a bed, and a room, for more than a week of my current two week stay had they scheduled better.

In any case, as a review, I can say, honestly that the Tallaght hospital has proved a positive. I would definitely come again, even if unwillingly, should I require the need again.

Home for Christmas

I’m home, well at least my bolt hole in Dublin, for Christmas. Having spent the last week in Tallaght Hospital with arrhythmia, rapid heart beat and now type 2 Diabetes I feel like a free man. Mind you, I have to go back tonight as there are more tests to take, and then they are going to shock me back to a normal heart beat. Still I’m free today and I have quite a story to tell about the 12 hours I spent in the Tallaght A&E and nice folks there. It looks like Damien has had his share of medical issues this season also, so I’m in good company. I’ll blog more about it when I finally get out of the hospital, I’m SO looking forward to that, as there is no internet there (even though I made a half hearted attempt to hack into their WiFi connections).

Truman vs Dewey ; Bertie vs Truth

In my previous post I mentioned the Truman vs Dewey election and was reminded of the slogan most associated with Truman, and how important it was in defining the man.

The Buck stops here!

It describes an era where no one wanted to take responsibility for the problems in the government. And Truman was willing to take that buck that was being passed, and step up to the responsibilities of government errors and problems.

And I was thinking about Bertie, and how the quote could be changed to reflect his apparent behavior,

The buck stops here, in my pocket.

Except that in this case we are talking about the ‘real’ Buck, the Euro, the Quid. After all, banking out of his suitcase is his defining moment.

Pattern Matching vs Prediction

I stumbled upon this article about Who Will Win the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election?. And realized that what they we claiming here was not a predictive method, but merely these people’s attempt to fit, to pattern match, ‘Presidential Electability’ factors to winners of elections. And making a half hearted attempt to apply these historical factors to up coming election. I’ll give you some examples, these are the factors they used in a previous ‘prediction’ Who Should Win the 2004 U.S. Presidential Election? they used factors like

if the candidate served as Director of Central Intelligence (e.g., George H. W. Bush), was a four- or five-star general officer in the United States Armed Forces (e.g., Dwight D. Eisenhower), or ordered the combat use of nuclear weapons (e.g., Harry S. Truman),

as you can see such ‘factors’ could only be applied to demonstrate why Truman beat Dewey, not as a general rule that proves the model.The factors used in the 2008 ‘prediction’ only suggest combinations of Presidential candidates , but can not predict them, because the factors are based on historical artifacts as part of the pattern matching, factors that can not be predicted in advance.

With that in mind there are no factors for emotional content, or future historical events.

They further go on to make this statement, We assume that major party primary voters are rational and will understand the empirical power of our algorithm. and we all know that voters for both nominees or candidates are not rational. And with a model that does not factor the level of ‘rational’ or irrationality of the electoral process, they can not forecast or predict. In other words, they can’t put their money where their mouths are.

They make another bold statement Readers of this paper could make a lot of money at Intrade.com if our assumption that major party primary voters are rational is correct. but you don’t see them making money.

The old adage is this, never take investment advice from a poor broker.

Katy French was a drug addict!

Let’s be clear here, EVERYONE knew that when she collapsed that it was drug related. Either from an overdose or due to some cheap drug dealer cutting the batch with something toxic. Katy was part of the problem, someone who appears perfect, and assumed that her partaking in illegal drug usage was her right as a celebrity. Above the law, and granted special rights. The thing is, will this lead to more celebrities being tested, of maybe minsters, lawyers and Guarda being tested. Not a chance in hell, this government is swimming in drugs it knows it, and in part, supports it, profits from it.

You will not stop the drug problem!

Until you start taking it down from the top, celebrities, minsters, lawyers and Guarda.

Guess what, you will have more luck legalizing Cocaine than arresting any of these drug users.

Government in revolt?

The Neocon’s are screaming loud and long that the NIE has been the result of Intelligence Agency personnel colluding to undermine the Bush administration policies. Now this in and of it’s self does not mean much, just politics in conflict with the facts. But if you add in the opinions of the Pentagon Chief of staff’s pronouncement a few weeks ago that they were ill equipped to start a new war with Iran in anyway, in defiance of the presidents own opinion, should give pause.

What if government bureaucracy is beginning to resist Bush policies. What if the Neocon’s are correct? What if the government is subtly in revolt from the Bush agenda? Would that give pause, and reconsideration of impeachment to Congress?

What if Bush cannot lead his own government? Very interesting….

And everything else

As we were talking about our cat, my wife mentioned; “What would we do without him”, and I replied “Everything else!” And this brought to mind an old saying that was common when I was in the Navy. “A bitchy sailor, is a happy sailor”. This is more or less what blogging is about, a place and a platform to bitch about things, and as I blog more about politicians and government, I could apply this meaningful cat dialog to my blogging. What would I do without bad politicians and rotten government, why, everything else. Governments could reform health care, cure cancer and fly to the Moon, Mars and the Stars. We could live in peace and have happier lives with our families. And I would have to find another subject to blog about. 😉