Song in my head: How much is that Uzi in the window?....Evan Wright
*Happy Summer Solstice*....Did you know that there is a Stonehenge replica in Washington state? It is about 45 miles east of me, across the Columbia River, in Washington. |Link|
Nuclear waste to roll through
Oregonians may have little say about transport through state
Oregon could see a tenfold increase in the amount of radioactive waste transported on Interstates 5 and 84 to the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Washington if the U.S Energy Department has its way. Yet Oregon voters will have little say in the decision.
Voters in Washington state, where Hanford is located across the Columbia River from Oregon, will decide on the plan in that state's ballot Initiative 297 in November.
The initiative would block the Department of Energy from using Hanford as a national dump for "hot" trash from weapons stations across the country until the reservation's existing mess is cleaned up.
On the surface, it looks like a Washington issue. After all, Hanford, an atomic-bomb-making relic that turned into North America's most polluted morass, is located in southeastern Washington.
But the expressways for potentially tens of thousands of truckloads of Hanford-bound garbage would cut through Oregon. The increased volume of radioactive trash rolling on interstates in Oregon could last 40 years under the plan for dealing with waste from making nuclear weapons. |Link|
I live near one of the freeways where this nuclear waste will travel through, I-84. It runs east/west; the main road headed east from the Portland, Oregon area. Rightly so sections of I-84 are designated as "truck safety corridors". Where I live is especially treacherous, hilly and curvy, with occasional rockslides. So when I leave my long driveway to go into town, I always notice the concrete guard rails that separate the freeway. If you look carefully you can see numerous scrapes, and damaged areas on the guard rail, whicm makes you wonder about the competency of the drivers. Whatever scraped along the guard rails always reminds me of unalert drivers and their near-misses. It seems like just a matter of time before there is a major accident along I-84, perhaps involving hazardous waste tankers. Lets hope not.
Canadian drugs still entice
Pharmacists try to slow prescription sales even as politicos ease opposition
The flow of cheaper prescription drugs from Canada isn’t likely to slow down.
Not if people like 73-year-old Felix Calkins of Portland are set on saving money and having easy access to northern druggists. That’s despite Oregon pharmacists warning, as they do in a new public education campaign unveiled Wednesday, not to buy the medications. |Link|
So, I have been paying out of pocket for all of my pharmaceutical needs. And, I am sure glad Medicare coverage begins in July for me. (after a 2 year wait from the day my federal disability application was accepted).
...for a grand total of $199.99 a month.
(and I am not counting Fosomax, which I really should be taking for my osteopena (precursor to osteoperosis)and allergy medicine; I like Zyrtec).
This new medicare system is extremely confusing. This is what I have grasped so far. Medicare is not free, there is a $66 a month fee, and a $100 a year deductible. The state of Oregon has a Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries (QMB) program that "helps people who have Medicare pay for their medical care". At my current income level I am eligible to get assistance with my $66 a month premium. (What is the opposite of premium?). That leaves me with a $100 a year deductible and copayments on all medical services, doc visits, and the savings provided to me with