I've been sick and recently come around the bend after a week of getting sicker, so haven't had the energy or mental with-it-ness to devote to actual blogging. By "sick" I mean "I spent a day in the ER because I was puking up water, pooping my intestines out and still had a bronchial infection", not at home with the sniffles.
Which, hey, gotta say - once again I'd like to thank Taiwan National Health Insurance for being super awesome. You guys are great - I will never, ever return to the American system as it currently is, even under the ACA. I realize the government is worried that they won't have enough money to maintain the system - I say that a healthy populace requires an investment, and that the money comes back to you in other ways (a healthier populace is also a more productive populace, and one that needs to return less often for follow-up treatment or relapses), and that whatever it may cost, it can't possibly be more than the US currently wastes on those who need medical care and can't afford it (both in coverage of ER/hospital bills they can't pay, ER visits that could have been avoided with a trip to the doctor, which they also couldn't afford, and missed work due to illness you can't afford to treat, not to mention covering only the sick, old and veterans, meaning that you have no risk pool of generally healthy people to help offset the cost) in our "more efficient" (heh heh) mostly-privatized system. Taiwan is so much better, and is a true model for good socialized health insurance (although it is not perfect). Why so many people assume the problem-ridden European/Canadian/Australian systems - especially the British one - are the only way to do socialized coverage is beyond me. Take a look around the world, and see that a better world is possible.
Fortunately, even if we did leave Taiwan, we wouldn't have to return to the American system. Because...
Guess who's Canadian now? That's right - my husband. Ah, Canada, where people are generally reasonable. If we ever left Taiwan for the West (and not another country farther away), I'd hit up Canada so fast that we'd be there before you could say "where's the Tim Horton's, ey?"
Otherwise, I haven't been doing much, having been sick and all. I've spent some time on Christmas gifts, because this year's crop is handmade - I'll post about that later. So on Taiwan, I have little to say as I haven't been truly engaged with the outside world for a few weeks, and have been feeling under the weather since Halloween.
Also, we got our invitation to our good friends' wedding:
My Taiwanese friends are all either single, not interested in marriage, can't marry right now (income/visa/long-distance issues), not ready for marriage or gay, it seems, so this is the first Taiwanese wedding we'll be attending, even after 6 years in Taiwan. You'd think wed've gone to one sooner, but no. I'm excited, and so happy for them!
So...a few links:
Woman denied abortion dies in Ireland - 唉！我歸懶趴火！！This just makes me so angry. Part of me wants to say "we need a national, no, a global dialogue about this", and part of me wants to say "if you're anti-choice, go eff yourself".
Also, another reminder that Ireland's got it wrong, as do the religious fundies in the USA (note: not all religious people are crazy fundies, let's not group them all together): one person's religion should not ever dictate the life and choices legally available to someone not of that religion. It should never, ever, not ever be the basis of a law, set of laws or a government - the only exception being if everyone in that country is a member of that religion (which is rarely true - maybe Saudi Arabia? But even they have foreign workers). This includes laws on abortion, contraception and gay marriage among others. It is not right and not ethical to create a law based on a religion and then expect people not of that religion to follow it, in a country where religious tolerance is supposed to be the norm. This is why I am so against the Catholic church arguing that they shouldn't have to provide contraception coverage to women employed and insured by them: their religion gives them no right - zero right whatsoever - to determine what is and is not a basic health benefit under a normal health plan. If I were a boss and my religion told me that cancer "didn't exist"or was a punishment by Satan and must be endured, or could be cured with rosewater or whatever, that wouldn't give me the right to only offer insurance that didn't cover cancer treatment. If I believed that people with allergies were liars, that wouldn't give me the right to only offer a plan that didn't cover allergy treatments. If they don't like it, they shouldn't be employers. Or better yet, let's take health care away from the purview of employers and make it available to all independent of their job.
What happens to women who are denied abortions? Well, some of them die (see above). Others fare...not so well. As a commenter on another site put it, they don't generally happily raise the baby and move to a nice suburb in Missouri where they become contented Republican voters.
Don't Google this. Just don't. Someone once told me that "women have been historically oppressed, but so have men. What women faced wasn't any worse than what society forced upon men". BULLSHIT.
Pink Science Kits From the 1950s
A much-needed primer on cultural appropriation - I don't agree with everything in this article. I really don't - some of it is dead-on and some of it is...well...not. I'll write more about it later.
Just for fun - The Hater's Guide To The Williams-Sonoma Catalog. One funny comment:
Everyone go to your nearest Williams-Sonoma store and grab every catalog (do they call it a catalogue?) they have. Carry at least one around at all times, so the next time any person starts talking about repealing Obamacare and how the government has no place telling rich people how to spend their money, just hand them one of these.
I disagree with this, but...haha. I totally want to be that asshole.
Have a happy, sunny day!