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Music post about Dave Swarbrick, fiddler extraordinaire in

by Ziks511 / August 5, 2009 11:43 AM PDT

Britain. Ex leader of Fairport Convention. I knew that he had hearing problems from playing in front of amplified speakers, but I didn't know that he was suffering from emphysema from years of being a heavy smoker and playing in smoke filled venues. Turns out he had a double lung transplant in 2007 in good old National Health Service Britain. He is no longer confined to a wheelchair, and has a new lease on life and on playing. For old folkies such as myself this is good news. He's another person whom I've met and played a little with, though there were about 3 guitar players including me, as well as the bass and drums, but it's a nice memory, and something I've had to share with my son. I got a chance to spend a couple of hours after a Fairport gig with the band with Sandy Denny (in a very black mood), Trevor Lucas an Aussie guitarist and vocalist, who was her husband, and the source of the mood, the really hot Nashville guitar player named Jerry Donahue who later became part of the Hellacasters, and Dave Mattacks and Dave Pegg on bass. An evening fuelled by Newcastle Brown Ale and me keeping my mouth shut and listening to story after story. A great night, and a great memory.

I remember Swarb, as he is known, complaining about his amp being placed too high on top of the speaker stack and the roadie, a Yorkshireman calling him "a fookin' dwarf" in a very good natured way. Swarb is only about 5 foot 5.

Sing hallelujah for his new lease on life.


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And I thought that Britain's health care system
by Diana Forum moderator / August 5, 2009 12:27 PM PDT

was so terrible.


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i believe that the "system" per se
by jonah jones / August 5, 2009 2:12 PM PDT

is OK......... it's the waiting that kills you Wink


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Having worked in it I can attest that it is a good system
by Ziks511 / August 11, 2009 9:12 PM PDT

though there are some waiting lists for a few procedures, for those without private insurance. Private insurance allows you to use private hospitals where waiting lists are virtually negligible. Most big companies offer private health insurance.

The Brits complain about the National Health, but they're a nation of complainers; it looked great to me from the inside and the quality of nursing care is flat out superb. There are lots of post-hospitalization services available which are either rare or non-existent in many other systems including both the US and Canada's.

As I understand it, Health Care in the US has risen to twice as much as the nearest other country's system, and all industrialized countries have one-payer Health Care covering every man woman and child in the country. Over all statistics do not paint a good picture of US health care either in terms of Peri-natal survival, longevity or any other statistic. In none of those countries can you be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition, or have your insurance revoked, or end up in bankruptcy court or lose your house.


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From an article in the HuffingtonPost about poorly selected
by Ziks511 / August 11, 2009 9:33 PM PDT

Cherry-picked evidence by The National Centre for Policy Analysis at the Hoover Institute. I'm sure you can figure out what side of the argument they're on. These are the corrections:

* A 2008 report by the Commonwealth Fund found that the U.S. dropped from 15th in 2006 to last among 19 countries in 2008 on a measure of mortality that is amenable to medical care. (4)

* A 2007 report ranked the U.S. 42nd in the world for life expectancy, lower than most of Europe and Japan. (5)

* A 2006 study found that Americans in late middle age are less healthy than their counterparts in England for cancer and five other chronic diseases. (6)

* A 2007 study found that Canada has at least the quality of care as in the U.S., often with better outcomes, despite spending little more than one-half what we spend on health care. (7)

* An earlier study showed conclusively that poor women with cancer in Toronto have better outcomes than their counterparts in Detroit, even after accounting for race and standards of measuring poverty (for example, the Canadian women had survival rates more than 50 percent higher for lung, stomach and pancreatic cancer compared to American women in Detroit's poorest districts). (8)

* The U.S. has a weaker primary care system than other developed countries; it has been found to rank 11th among 11 countries on eleven performance criteria (9); our primary care base is in crisis with less than 10 percent of medical graduates now opting for careers as primary care physicians (10); moreover, patients living in parts of our country with larger number of specialists (and greater use of technology) are more likely to have late-stage colorectal cancer when first diagnosed. (11)


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I wish that the idiots that are screaming at
by Diana Forum moderator / August 12, 2009 12:50 AM PDT

townhall meetings would read this.

Not allowing discussion by screaming everyone else down is criminal whether it occurs by the left or right.


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Exercising First Amendment rights is criminal?
by EdHannigan / August 12, 2009 1:27 AM PDT

I think some of the reports of "shouting down" speakers is exaggerated. People are angry. Maybe it would be a good idea to find out what they're angry about rather than calling them idiots.

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Musician, in general, aren't known

for having some of the best personal habits and lifestyles. I'm not sure if that's true or just a bum rap. I remember some discussion when David Crosby got his liver transplant after years of drug and alcohol addiction destroyed his own. Some folks hollered that the healthy liver should go to someone who'd lost theirs for reasons other than poisoning it themselves. Perhaps there are now more potential donors than there are people waiting for organs.

Medical ethics is it's own discussion. It's good to know that people can get a second chance for mistakes made when younger and not so smart as we old foggies. Happy

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David Crosby is still with us, Mickey Mantle went through 2
by Ziks511 / August 11, 2009 9:17 PM PDT

livers and still died because he couldn't stop drinking. Swarb, as he is known was a life-long smoker, even including on his album art, and I don't know of any illegal substances that will give you emphysema any quicker than cigarettes. Additionally the venues he played were smoke filled too.


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