International Day of Climate Action

I just found out about this--I'm a bit behind the 8-ball, but still on the correct date! (barely)

"Blog Action Day is an annual event held every October 15 that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking discussion around an issue of global importance. Blog Action Day 2009 will be one of the largest-ever social change events on the web."

So for my bit of blogging action, I want to put a plug in for 350.org. 350.org is website that seeks to inspire the world to take action for climate change. The magic number, 350, is for the parts per million (ppm) of CO2 that is safe for the atmosphere. Currently we are at 387 ppm.
(If you are interested in the real-deal, no-nonsense science, then have fun reading "Target atmospheric CO2: Where should humanity aim?")

350.org encourages each of us to take action on the International Day of Climate Action (next Saturday, October 24). I'm going to help on a Garden of the Gods cleanup project with a meetup group.

Oh! and I first found out about this website through The Colbert Report:
(As a reminder to any INVSTers--Bill Mckibben, founder of 350.org, is the author of Deep Economy)

Insure People, Not Profits

Sick of hearing about health insurance? Me too. I wish that I didn't have to hear anything more about health-care, insurance companies, PPOs, HMOs, co-pays, premiums, deductibles, and prescription drugs. I wish we could be done with this and move on to other important topics like Afghanistan, Global Climate Change, or **gasp** Letterman's Affair! (j/k about that last one)

But, before you tune out completely, I want to share my health insurance story. Back in the day (when I was 22) I had cheap, excellent health insurance. I had Tricare insurance (government-run health insurance) as a military dependent. For my appointments I paid a $12 co-pay (even for specialists) When I had surgery, I paid a $25 co-pay and perscriptions always cost $3/drug. About two years ago I woke up with terrible and mysterious pain in my right elbow. I saw many, many doctors, was in and out of physical therapy for years, and had two different surgeries. My doctors never did figure out what the problem was with my elbow.

Then I turned 23...

23 is when you age out of the tricare system. Since I didn't have health insurance through my employer, I had to purchase an individual plan. Before I turned 23, I applied for health insurance and found out weeks later that I had been denied due to "undiagnosed elbow pain." I applied to another company and again I was denied. I am one of the "young invincibles", but not by choice. I want health insurance and I am willing to pay, but can't get covered. For now, I have a short-term, emergency care only plan that will only last for a few more months and then I am back to square one. Something needs to change. Like the World Health Organization, I believe that "the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition."

That is why on Tuesday I attended the "Rally Against Greed" during my lunch break on the front steps of city hall in Colorado Springs. About 50 people attended which was super impressive considering how rainy and cold it was. This was my first rally for an issue rather than a candidate and it was super fun. Coincidentally, my friend Pete from the PP Justice and Peace Commission happened to run into me at the County Clerk and Recorder's Office and I got a ride to the rally! How fun! To keep things interesting, one guy with an "I survived Obama's death camps" jacket on hung around for awhile. I really am curious about where he got that jacket though. It was pretty fancy.

I learned that people that honk are really what makes the rally fun, that I should make my own sign for next time and that cute, high-heel shoes are no good for rallies.

And a few pictures from the event:

An estimate 45,000 people die annually due to lack of health insurance.
Rally with city hall in the background

"Jesus didn't charge premiums" in front of First Presbyterian Church in Colorado Springs

We were in the news!