We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Justice Louis Brandeis
Trickle-down economics is the first cousin of austerity economics. Austerity is nuts when so many millions are out of work. And as we’ve learned before, trickle-down is a fraud. Nothing ever trickles down. - Robert Reich, "A Story for May Day"
... apologies for infrequent posting, but stuff has been happening.
Of course I have my usual twice-a-week physical therapy; this week they're teaching me to balance from the hips to distribute weight more evenly between my natural (left) leg and my prosthetic (right) leg when I'm walking; yes, that takes longer to say than it takes to go through one cycle of "shift weight; step (sometimes step up) with the foot not bearing the weight; step down (if necessary); redistribute the weight for the next cycle."
Then on Wednesday I had my MetroLift™ in-person interview in the course of applying to be eligible to use the service, also known as the "are you a cripple? prove it!" interview. I passed. It's hard to miss when I let my shorts leg ride up the way a very flirtatious woman might do, only in my case, what shows is the carbon-fiber top of my prosthesis. Sexy? no. Proof that I'm a cripple? Well, yes. The MetroLift ride downtown to Houston Metro headquarters, the interview, and the MetroLift ride home took, altogether, nearly the whole business day. No one said assisting disabled people was quick or easy. I should receive my MetroLift ID in about a week; then I can begin scheduling some of my daily trips for which I've depended on friends (thanks, George! thanks, Stella!) on public transit.
An aside about MetroLift: if you ever wondered whether the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 had any significant positive consequences, the answer is an emphatic yes: the law requires, say, the City of Houston to provide to people with disabilities transportation comparable to mass transit for non-crippled people... at a comparable price... and that's what MetroLift is all about. Houston goes a step further, equipping all city buses and MetroRail with handicapped-friendly facilities; that doesn't help me because the nearest bus stop is almost a half mile from my home... and I can't walk a half mile yet, if ever. So I spent a day of my life arranging to receive the same functional benefit you can get by walking to the bus stop (rail stop, whatever) and getting on the proper public transit vehicle.
As vehicles have a sixth sense about such things, Stella's auto wound up in the shop yesterday and today, because the brakes were behaving oddly. Diagnosis: master cylinder. Resolution: either replace it or make your plans to run into a car, a wall, a post or whatever in the near future. Of course we replaced it.
With luck, I'll return to actual political blogging soon. I've been thinking about it; I just haven't had time and energy. Thanks for your patience.