The Department of Veterans Affairs has released a report that shows improvement in gender disparities in 12 out of 14 Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) measures in VA since 2008. VA has implemented a national initiative to improve care for women Veterans. A report on that initiative, Gender Differences in Performance Measures, VHA 2008-2011, identifies best practices for eliminating gender gaps based on success in VA networks. Both reports can be downloaded at VA's Women Veterans Health Care web site at www.womenshealth.va.gov.
The American Legion reports that Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA's) women's health initiative has already produced marked improvements in health-care quality for women veterans. Survey results from FY 2010-2011 show the initiative has improved the quality of screening for cervical and breast cancer. Other improvements include correcting bathroom and privacy deficiencies at VA facilities, improving emergency room care for women and educating providers with "mini-residencies" on women's health care. New policies are being developed for maternity care coordination, infertility issues and emergency contraception...
(I've been enrolled in the VA Health Care System for over 20 years and have been an regular patient/participant since '98. I have noticed a marked increase in the amount of women veterans utilizing VAHC over the past two years. The VA is indeed working hard to accommodate women's health care needs and each VAMC has a Women's Health Coordinator.)
The Department of Veterans Affairs has approved more than 36,000 applications for the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP), a new training and education program for unemployed Veterans to upgrade their skills for in-demand jobs. VA expects to fill all 45,000 available slots for the fiscal year 2012 phase of the program before the Sept. 30 deadline and will continue processing new applications for fiscal year 2013. Potential applicants can learn more about VRAP and apply online at benefits.va.gov/vow/education.htm , or call VA toll-free at 1-800-827-1000. Information about the Department of Labor's programs for Veterans is available at www.dol.gov/vets.
If you are a military veteran with a service-related disability you may qualify for over $3,100 in monthly benefits. These benefits are paid to veterans who have injuries or diseases that happened while on active duty, or were made worse by active military service. It is also paid to certain veterans disabled from VA health care. These benefits are tax-free. View a summary of VA Disability Compensation -- Eligibility, Pay, Application Process, Reimbursement, Compensation Tables and Server Disability Compensation.
Ask Me About Being A Birthday Party Princess
Some people have asked me what it's like to be an entertainment princess, someone who performs at big events and small, at hospital charity functions and at private birthday/Christmas parties...do we get licenses to do Disney characters, how much do we get paid, what exactly do we do, are all children horrible, what's the stupidest thing a child/grown up has ever said to you, what do you have to look like/act like/sound like to get the job, and whether it's a good paying job for a student or someone looking for side work.
BIC Cristal For Her Ball Pen (Amazon)
Review: "My drawings of kittens and ponies have improved, and now that I'm writing my last name hyphenated with the Robert Pattinson's last name, I really believe he may some day marry me! I'm positively giddy. Those smart men in marketing have come up with a pen that my lady parts can really identify with."
Paul Krugman: Rosie Ruiz Republicans (New York Times)
Remember Rosie Ruiz? In 1980 she was the first woman to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon - except it turned out that she hadn't actually run most of the race, that she sneaked onto the course around a mile from the end. Ever since, she has symbolized a particular kind of fraud, in which people claim credit for achieving things they have not, in fact, achieved.
Ryan's VP Spin (Factcheck.org)
Paul Ryan's acceptance speech at the Republican convention contained several false claims and misleading statements. Delegates cheered as the vice presidential nominee: Accused President Obama's health care law of funneling money away from Medicare "at the expense of the elderly." In fact, Medicare's chief actuary says the law "substantially improves" the system's finances, and Ryan himself has embraced the same savings.
David Bruce has 42 Kindle books on Amazon.com with 250 anecdotes in each book. Each book is $1, so for $42 you can buy 10,500 anecdotes. Search for "Funniest People," "Coolest People, "Most Interesting People," "Kindest People," "Religious Anecdotes," "Maximum Cool," and "Resist Psychic Death."
Guess that about says it all...
PS: We are off to the West Indies Parade in the city today. We go early to catch the color, but miss the rowdies...
Jim from CA, retired to ID, responded:
Oregon was the first state to make it a holiday in 1887.
Dale of Diamond Springs said:
Oregon was the first state to make Labor Day a holiday on February 21, 1887. I remember when this holiday marked the beginning of campaign season!
Oregon was the first state to make it a holiday in 1887.
And, Joe S answered:
Oregon in 1887.
In our home, all that we have, all that we own, we owe to the Union. Our house, our car (Ford) and all our possessions are paid for directly or indirectly by Union Labor. We have my pensions, we have our Social Security and we have our Medicare all due to Union Action. We have printed on our checks, right above the signature line, "This payment made possible by Union Labor."
I have been a member of the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers), AIW (Allied Industrial Workers, the birthplace of the UAW) and AFSCME (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees). With the AIW I served as Chief Steward and Negotiating Committee Chairman. I was also elected Secretary of the Western Michigan District. I served as Local President and Chairman of the Negotiating Committee for AFSCME. I was also was Chairman of the Health and Welfare Committee and Secretary/Treasurer of our Central Labor Body (AFL-CIO) here in Manistee. The Union has been my life. Carla was always my chief advisor going into negotiations, her advice to me, "Don't give back a damned thing." I never did.
We used to have a big Labor Day parade and a community dinner afterward, BarBQ beef, potato salad, slaw, beer, and pop, all free and open to the public, sponsored by all the locals unions in town. It doesn't happen any more.
My favorite Union Songs
Solidarity Forever There is Power in the Union Banks of Marble Union Maid
CBS begins the night on the East Coast with a RERUN'NCIS', followed by a RERUN'NCIS: The 2nd One', then FRESH'Dems 2Nite'.
CBS begins the night early on the left coast with FRESH'Dems 2Nite', followed by a RERUN'NCIS', then a RERUN'NCIS: The 2nd One', followed by an hour of local crap.
Scheduled on a FRESHDave are Claire Danes, Dwyane Wade, and Bob Mould.
Scheduled on a FRESHCraig are Kathy Griffin and Tedeschi Trucks Band.
NBC starts the night on the East Coast with a FRESH'America's Got Talent', followed by FRESH'Dems 2Nite'.
NBC starts the night early with FRESH'Dems 2Nite', followed by a FRESH'America's Got Talent', then either an old 'Dateline' or an hour of local crap.
Scheduled on a FRESHLeno are Kevin Hart, Rep. Ron Paul, and Robert Cray.
Scheduled on a FRESHJimmy Fallon are Kirsten Dunst, Gov. Chris Christie, and Jason Mraz.
On a RERUNCarson 'The Scab' Daly (from 5/1/12) Jim Gaffigan, LP, and Ed Sheeran.
ABC opens the night on the East Coast with a RERUN'The Middle', followed by a RERUN'Last Man Standing', then a RERUN'Happy Endings', followed by a RERUN'Don't Trust The Palin In Apartment 23'. then FRESH'Dems 2Nite'.
ABC opens the night on the Left Coast with FRESH'Dems 2Nite', followed by an hour of local crap, then a RERUN'The Middle', followed by a RERUN'Last Man Standing', then a RERUN'Happy Endings', followed by a RERUN'Don't Trust The Palin In Apartment 23'.
Scheduled on a FRESHJimmy Kimmel are Jamie Foxx, Cat Deeley, and Imagine Dragons.
The CW offers a RERUN'Hart Of Dixie', followed by a RERUN'The Next: Fame Is At Your Doorstep'.
Faux has a FRESH'Hell's Kitchen', followed by a FRESH'MasterChef'.
MY recycles an old 'Cold Case', followed by another old 'Cold Case'.
A&E has 'Coma' (part1), followed by 'Coma' (part2).
AMC offers the movie 'GoodFellas', followed by the movie 'Crimson Tide', then the movie 'The Last of the Mohicans'.
[6:00AM] BBC WORLD NEWS
[7:00AM] BBC WORLD NEWS
[8:00AM] THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW - Season 9 - Ep 12 - Ewan McGregor, Chris O'Dowd, Example
[9:00AM] THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW - Season 7 - Ep 4 - Karen Gillan, Jennifer Lopez, Alan Davies, Ben's Brother
[10:00AM] DOCTOR WHO - Season 2 - Ep 10 - Love & Monsters
[11:00AM] DOCTOR WHO - Season 2 - Ep 11 - Fear Her
[12:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES UK - Season 2 - Ep 1 - Lanterna
[1:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES US - Season 1 - Ep 2 - Lela's
[2:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES US - Season 3 - Ep 7 - Sushi Ko
[3:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES UK - Season 1 - Ep 2 - Glass House
[4:00PM] DOCTOR WHO - Season 6 - Ep 2 - Day of the Moon
[5:00PM] BATTLESTAR GALACTICA - Season 4 - Ep 18 - Deadlock
[6:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES UK - Season 3 - Ep 3 - Rococo
[7:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES UK - Season 4 - Ep 1 - Ruby Tates
[8:00PM] RAMSAY'S KITCHEN NIGHTMARES US - Season 4 - Ep 9 - Capri
[9:00PM] PLANET EARTH
[10:00PM] PLANET EARTH
[11:00PM] NO KITCHEN REQUIRED - Season 1 - Ep 5 - Hawaii
[12:00AM] PLANET EARTH
[1:00AM] PLANET EARTH
[2:00AM] NO KITCHEN REQUIRED - Season 1 - Ep 5 - Hawaii
[3:00AM] PLANET EARTH
[4:00AM] PLANET EARTH
[5:00AM] BBC WORLD NEWS (ALL TIMES EDT)
Bravo has 'Flipping Out', another 'Flipping Out', followed by a FRESH'Flipping Out', and another 'Flipping Out'.
Comedy Central has an old 'Colbert Report', an old 'Jon Stewart', 'Workaholics', 'Tosh.0', another 'Tosh.0', still another 'Tosh.0', yet another 'Tosh.0', followed by a FRESH'The Burn With Jeff Ross'.
Scheduled on a FRESHJon Stewart is Tom Brokaw.
Scheduled on a FRESHColbert Report is Reihan Salam.
FX has '2½ Men', another '2½ Men', followed by the movie 'Date Night'.
History has 'Pawn Stars', another 'Pawn Stars', still another 'Pawn Stars', yet another 'Pawn Stars', followed by a FRESH'Top Gear', then a FRESH'Counting Cars', followed by another FRESH'Counting Cars'.
[7:30AM] Che: Part Two
[10:15AM] Operation Valkyrie
[12:30PM] Che: Part One
[3:15PM] Che: Part Two
[6:00PM] Malcolm in the Middle-Chad's Sleepover
[6:30PM] Malcolm in the Middle-No Motorcycles
[7:00PM] Malcolm in the Middle-Butterflies
[7:30PM] Malcolm in the Middle-Ida's Dance
[8:00PM] The Boondock Saints
[10:15PM] The Boondock Saints
[12:30AM] Valhalla Rising
[2:30AM] Valhalla Rising
[4:30AM] Onion News Network-Snowlocaust
[5:00AM] Action-Re-enter the Dragon
[5:30AM] Bunk (ALL TIMES EDT)
[6:00A] Love Lust & Chocolate
[7:00A] Shooting Fish
[8:45A] The U.S. Vs. John Lennon
[10:30A] The Father of My Children
[12:30P] Shooting Fish
[2:15P] The U.S. Vs. John Lennon
[4:00P] The Father of My Children
[6:00P] ALL ON THE LINE - Radenroro: Bad is Better than Boring (Episode 1, Season 1)
[7:00P] ICONOCLASTS - Stella McCartney + Ed Ruscha (Episode 4, Season 4)
[8:10P] Cassandra's Dream
[10:00P] State and Main
[11:50P] The Center of the World
[1:20A] Cassandra's Dream
[3:10A] State and Main
[5:00A] Love Lust & The Paranormal (ALL TIMES EDT)
SyFy has 'Face Off', another 'Face Off', followed by a FRESH'Face Off', and 'Collection Intervention'.
Scheduled on a FRESHConan are David Mizejewski, Kunal Nayyar, and Todd Barry.
French President Francois Hollande is scheduled to decorate former Beatle Paul McCartney with a Legion of Honouraward, the president's office told Reuters on Monday.
In the ceremony scheduled for September 8, McCartney will be made an officer of the Legion of Honour, France's highest public distinction which has been awarded to the likes of actor Clint Eastwood and singer Liza Minnelli.
Created by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802, and symbolized by a red lapel thread, the Legion of Honour has three grades, Chevalier, Officer and Commander.
The honour carries social status but no money, and recipients have to buy their own medal from a licensed jeweler, with prices ranging from 169 euros to 700 euros ($210 to $880) for the highest rank.
Two hundred years after the key battle of the French-Russian war, thousands of enthusiasts are reenacting the clash.
The Battle of Borodino, in which Napoleon Bonaparte's army fought against czarist troops and Cossacks, claimed at least 70,000 lives by most estimates. It was glorified in Leo Tolstoy's "War and Peace."
The battle, which took place about 100 kilometers (65 miles) west of Moscow, pushed Russian forces out of position and Napoleon's army eventually seized the capital. But the Russian withdrawal at Borodino had preserved the army's strength and Napoleon was forced to retreat from Moscow a few weeks later.
On Sunday, former French President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing opened the reenactment, in which almost 3,000 enthusiasts from Russia, France and 20 other countries took part.
Princess Anne unveiled Monday a giant goddess sculpted from rock, earth and waste reclining in the remains of a coal mine in northern England.
The private ceremony formally declared that the 1,300-foot- (400-meter-) long female form, named Northumberlandia, has been completed. The nude figure, also known as "The Lady of the North," is 7.5 times the size of a soccer pitch and takes 20 minutes to walk around.
Visitors will be able to scale the figure's curves, but pilots flying into Newcastle airport get the best view.
American artist Charles Jencks designed the 3 million pound ($4.7 million) sculpture, which will be open to the public at select times from Wednesday.
A co-founder of popular file sharing website The Pirate Bay was arrested in Cambodia at the request of Sweden, where he faces a one-year prison term for violating copyright laws, authorities said Monday.
Cambodian authorities arrested Gottfrid Svartholm Warg on Thursday at a home he had rented in the capital, Phnom Penh, said national police spokesman Kirth Chantharith.
"He is being detained in Cambodia and we are waiting to expel him," Kirth Chantharith said. Cambodia has no extradition treaty with Sweden but has requested details of Svartholm Warg's crime in order to process his handover, he said, adding that Cambodia would act as quickly as possible.
Svartholm Warg and the site's three other founders were convicted in 2009 by a Swedish court of assisting copyright infringement by helping millions of the site's users to illegally download music, movies and computer games. All were sentenced to one year in prison and ordered to pay 30 million kronor ($3.6 million) to entertainment companies, including Warner Bros., Sony Music Entertainment, EMI and Columbia Pictures.
Svartholm Warg failed to show up at an appeal hearing in 2010. At the time, his defense attorney told the court he had received text messages from Svartholm Warg's mother saying her son had fallen ill in Cambodia and would not appear in court.
Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe lost his way kayaking in the waters off New York's Long Island and was picked up by a U.S. Coast Guard boat and ferried to a harbor, officials said Sunday.
The 48-year-old actor was kayaking with a friend and launched from Cold Spring Harbor Saturday afternoon on the Long Island Sound, according to U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Robert Swieciki. As it got dark, the two got lost and eventually headed for shore, beaching their kayaks in Huntington Bay, nearly 10 miles east from where they had set out.
The U.S. Coast Guard was patrolling the area, and heard Crowe call out to them from the shore around 10 p.m., Swieciki said. The "Gladiator" actor and his friend, who Swieciki didn't recognize, paddled over to the boat. The Coast Guard officers pulled them up and, along with their kayaks, gave them a ride to Huntington Harbor.
"He just needed a little bit of help, he just got a little lost," Swieciki said. "It wasn't really a rescue, really, more of just giving someone a lift."
Members of CodePink, an anti-war group mainly composed of women, hold banners at the CarolinaFest, a large street festival for Convention delegates and their families, ahead of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina September 3, 2012. U.S. President Barack Obama will be nominated as the Democratic candidate at the convention, along with Vice President Joe Biden as his running mate, for November's U.S. presidential election.
Photo by Adrees Latif
Of those without tattoos, just 8 percent plan to get one, the study found. And while 75 percent say their opinion of others is not affected by body art, nearly a quarter "say they think worse of people with tattoos."
The disdain for body art steadily increases with age: 30 percent of those 65 and older think worse of tattooed people, versus only 8 percent of millennials. Those with high levels of education and income also are more likely to negatively judge tattoos; college graduates (26 percent) and those with graduate work (27 percent) are about 10 points more likely to think worse of body art wearers. The tattooless in the highest income bracket (32 percent) are 12 to 13 points more likely to think this way than any other income level.
According to the poll, President Obama leads Mitt Romney among New Jersey's tattooed registered voters. Fourteen percent of Garden State voters who say they're voting for Romney have tattoos, compared to 22 percent for Obama.
Mariachis walk on stilts during the International Mariachi Parade in Guadalajara September 2, 2012. Mariachis, traditional Mexican musicians whose music originated in the 19th century in the state of Jalisco, play music for paying customers in public places, bars and restaurants, or at weddings and parties, and have been officially declared an "intangible cultural heritage of humanity" by UNESCO.
Photo by Alejandro Acosta
A stowaway kitten who survived a three-week ocean voyage from China to California trapped in a storage container without food or water has found a new home.
Los Angeles County animal control officials said Friday that the cat, which has been named Ni Hao (NEE' how) or "hello" in Chinese, will leave the animal hospital he's called home since turning up in the U.S. last month to start life next week with a family in the LA suburb of Redondo Beach.
An officer said the kitten had shallow breathing and was "curled up in a ball with his eyes shut," said animal control official Aaron Reyes.
The kitten suffered considerable muscle atrophy on the journey, causing him to walk with a ginger, unusual gait, Reyes said.
But, Reyes said, "he's gone from this shriveled up little kitten with shallow breathing and knocking on death's door to this curious, playful, bouncy, affectionate, patient, little furry kitty."
A late-summer horror tale took possession of the weekend box office as Hollywood quietly wound down a busy season that turned out to be not so busy.
"The Possession" debuted as the No. 1 movie with $21.3 million over the four-day Labor Day weekend, according to studio estimates. The Lionsgate fright flick stars Kyra Sedgwick and Jeffrey Dean Morgan as parents of a girl possessed by a demon.
Opening in second-place with $13 million was the Weinstein Co. bootlegging drama "Lawless," with Shia LaBeouf and Guy Pearce in a story of moonshiners pursued by a corrupt lawman during Prohibition.
Studio executives started the season with projections of record business, but revenues dropped 3 percent compared to summer 2011, while attendance was at its lowest in at least 20 years, according to box-office tracker Hollywood.com.
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Hollywood.com. Where available, latest international numbers are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.
1. "The Possession," $21.3 million ($3.5 million international).
2. "Lawless," $13 million.
3. "The Expendables 2," $11.2 million ($20 million international).
4. "The Bourne Legacy," $9.4 million ($12.6 million international).
5. "ParaNorman," $8.8 million ($3.1 million international).
6. "The Odd Life of Timothy Green," $8.5 million.
7. "The Dark Knight Rises," $7.9 million ($46.4 million international).
8. "2016: Obama's America," $7.1 million.
9. "The Campaign," $7 million.
10. "Hope Springs," $6 million.
Clarke died Monday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where he was being treated for a heart attack, said his fiancée, Reverend Omarosa Manigault, in a statement released by publicist Joy Fehily.
The muscular, 6-foot-4 Duncan, a former bodyguard who turned to acting in his 30s, "suffered a myocardial infarction on July 13 and never fully recovered," the statement said. "Manigault is grateful for all of your prayers and asks for privacy at this time. Celebrations of his life, both private and public, will be announced at a later date."
In the spring of 2012, Clarke had appeared in a video for PETA, the animal rights organization, in which he spoke of how much better he felt since becoming a vegetarian three years earlier.
Duncan had a handful of minor roles before "The Green Mile" brought him an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor. The 1999 film, based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, starred Tom Hanks as a corrections officer at a penitentiary in the 1930s. Duncan played John Coffey, a convicted murderer with a surprisingly gentle demeanor and extraordinary healing powers.
Born in Chicago in 1957, Duncan was raised by a single mother whose resistance to his playing football led to his deciding he wanted to become an actor. But when his mother became ill, he dropped out of college, Alcorn State University, and worked as a ditch digger and bouncer to support her. By his mid-20s, he was in Los Angeles, where he looked for acting parts and became a bodyguard for Will Smith, Jamie Foxx and other stars. The murder of rapper Notorious B.I.G., for whom Duncan had been hired to protect before switching assignments, led him to quit his job and pursue acting full-time.
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Make yourself home, take your shoes off...
Go ahead, scratch it if it itches.
The idea is to have fun.
Do you have something to say?
Anything that increased your blood pressure, or, even better, amused or entertained?
Do you have a great album no one's heard?
How about a favorite TV show, movie, book, play, cartoon, or legal amusement?
A popular artist that just plain pisses you off?
A box set the whole world should own?
Vile, filthy rumors about Republican hypocrites?
Just plain vile, filthy rumors?