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Dobie Gray, 71. (His correct age is on his website.)

Weather, or not?

It’s been raining for days. Yesterday, it was 67 degrees. Today, it’s still raining, but tonight we might see some snow. Oy.

Occupy K Street

Nicole Sandler live:

Last night’s show

Jay Ackroyd and I discussed a lot of things, including the Affordable Health Care Act’s pre-existing condition coverage. Listen here!

Some questions just answer themselves

Why isn’t the media covering the uprisings in Saudi Arabia?

Running out of toys

This makes me sad. If you have the means to donate, please do so:

The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program in Philadelphia has been flooded with requests for toys this year, far outstripping supply, say organizers.

And local marines are asking for help.

“We are way under supplied,” said Staff Sgt. Marc Palos, the Toys for Tots coordinator for Philadelphia and Bristol.

“We are running out of toys and people keep requesting them,” he added. “We just don’t have enough to give them.”

Palos cited continuing economic troubles as the culprit, but says he is unsure why this year would be worst than last.

Last year, the program produced over 113,000 toys by Christmas.

“This year, I seriously doubt will make that marker,” Palos said. “We’re just not receiving the toys we have in the past from the public.”

However, Palos said corporations are still donating, and he said there is still time to make up the slack. The Marines have collection sites at all Philadelphia Fire Department stations, as well as four Toys R Us locations.

“In years past, we really didn’t have an issue,” Palos said. “We need to get the word out … I guarantee you that by the end of this week, we might not have any toys to distribute.”

Remember when

Those Tennessee firefighters let a house burn to the ground because the owners didn’t pay their $75 fire fee?

It just happened again.

Why, that makes as much sense as letting someone suffer from an illness because they haven’t bought insurance… oh, never mind.

Austerity for cancer patients

Look what they’re doing in England to cover the bankers’ gambling debts:

Thousands of seriously ill cancer patients will be forced to take medical tests and face “back to work” interviews, despite assurances from ministers that they would not make it harder for the sick to get welfare, charities have warned.

Buried in a report to ministers by Prof Malcolm Harrington, the government adviser on testing welfare recipients, are proposals to force cancer patients who are undergoing intravenous chemotherapy to prove they are too ill to work.

At present, patients who are unable to work because of cancer and the side-effects of treatments are allowed to claim the highest rate of employment support allowance (ESA), worth up to £100 a week. More than 9,000 cancer patients were placed automatically on the welfare payment from October 2008 to June 2010. However, the expert report says this “automatic entitlement” has encouraged dependency on benefits, “encouraging wrong behaviours from employers and stigmatising cancer as something that can lead to unemployment or worklessness”.

Instead, cancer patients on chemotherapy in hospitals will now have to prove that they are too sick to work, and take part in the controversial work capability assessment to determine whether someone is eligible for benefits. If cancer patients are found able to return to employment they may also be required to participate in work-related practice job interviews, as a condition of receiving their benefit.

Such assessments have been attacked by charities amid mounting evidence that people with serious illnesses are being judged fit for work when they are not.


Christmas Time in Harlem

Happy Holidays, from Delco Nightingale!

Site maintainance

Two things: Barring any last-minute glitches, we’ll be switching over to the new design sometime this weekend. So if you want to save a copy of the girls with guns header, grab it now. (I think you’ll like the new one just as much. Someone designed it for me, and it’s pretty cool.)

Second, if you use the blogroll links from Banter Media, you need to bookmark your faves or put them in your RSS feed. They won’t be here much longer.

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