Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘cost’

A Better Argument For Alabama #ALpolitics To Legalize, Regulate & Tax Marijuana

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, February 27, 2016

Recently, on February 23, 2016, AL.com published an OpEd entitled “Would legalizing cannabis solve Alabama’s budget problems?” written by Reggie C. Pulliam, whom was identified as “a resident of Gulf Shores who has worked on public policy and criminal justice reform in Washington, D.C.”

I found his Op-Ed unconvincing because it’s poorly written.

The Colorado Department of Revenue reported that for December 2015 (State of Colorado Marijuana Taxes, Licenses, and Fees Transfers and Distribution December 2015 Sales Reported in January 2016), Total All Marijuana Taxes, Licenses, and Fees was $13,247,434.

The year-to-date increase was $4,689,293.

Based upon the December figure, on an annualized basis, that’s $158,969,208… which is not exactly chump change.
(See “Alabama Senate Approves Shifting $100 Million Away From Schools” published September 15, 2015.)

Linked here is the Colorado Department of Revenue’s Colorado Marijuana Tax Data.

Figuring into the state cost : benefit analysis & calculations also is a decrease in costs associated with Read the rest of this entry »

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Grocery Shopping & more Grocery Shopping: A Quick Price Comparison – @Publix v @Kroger

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, October 20, 2015

As a general rule, I don’t shop at Publix because the prices are higher.

Until now, that’d been only a casual observation.

I had never formally price checked… until now.

Recently, I decided to purchase some groceries at Publix only because the store was conveniently along my route.

My preference continues to be for Kroger.

The 11 items purchased at Publix were: Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in - Even MORE Uncategorized!, - Round, round, get around, I get around. | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

How Much Could Alabama Save By Not Paying Legislators?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, April 30, 2015

UPDATE: Sunday, 14 June 2015 – Found following main body

Today (Thursday, 30 April 2015) the Alabama State Senate knocked off at 11:30, and reconvened 1PM. It’s also the final day of the Legislative Session for the week – they only work three days each week – Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

An hour and a half – that’s a nice, long lunch break for a wealthy man, a powerful man – not a working man. It’s pretty cushy for someone who works three days a week, only 30 days a year. Reckon how your boss would respond if you asked for a three-day work week and a 30-day work year?

How long do you get for lunch?

Most folks get 30 minutes.

The Alabama Senate gets THREE times longer than most working folks.

But then, excesses in Alabama state politics is nothing new.

Recall that – by law – the Alabama Legislature is limited to work <30 days/year (in a 105 day period) & for that privilege, citizens & taxpayers fork over $50K+/yr in pay & compensation to them – 35 in the Senate, and 105 in the House.
TOTAL=140 men (mostly) & women.

In stark contrast, New Mexico’s State Legislators are a Volunteer Legislature (they’re elected, yes, but unpaid), and during Session, by State Law receive a Daily Federal Per Diem, and Two-Way Mileage once during a session EXCLUSIVELY.

Legislative pay in Alabama has been a hot-button issue, particularly in recent years – and, it’s unnecessarily complicated. By State Constitutional Law, their “official” pay is Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

No More Alcohol in Gasoline?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, March 17, 2014

Recently, I received an email message from a friend, one who is highly intelligent, and who has a phenomenal diversity of life experiences. The item had a video to a Faux News video segment, which is included in this post, at the conclusion.

My response to the half-truthed item follows.

Here’s hoping you and others find it informative, and helpful.

While I have neither been the type to proclaim THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING! nor believe there is conspiracy against me, nor the paranoid type that imagines “the government” is out to get me (and therefore neither view nor read Fox News), I do think there is some credence to the item. (Of course, a “Snopes check” shows a mix of half-truths. But, if it ain’t all true, it ain’t true – kinda’ like the gas, you know.) More details on that follow.

In a story published published Saturday, February 1st, 2014, the Chattanooga Times-Free Press wrote how some motorists in that area are preferring 100% pure gasoline over the 10% Ethanol blend. (I happened to read that story at the time it was published.)
http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2014/feb/01/some-motorists-want-their-gasoline-corn-free/

While residing there, I also noticed the same, and noticed that the price for 100% pure gasoline is higher than for the 10% ethanol blend. One day, while pumping the 100% gasoline at a Chattanooga gas station, I happened to speak with a gent at the adjacent pump about the difference. He shared an observation with me which I thought quite interesting, and one which certainly seemed reasonable.

He said that in an “accidental” experiment, he purchased some 10% ethanol blended gasoline for use in his lawn mower. He then poured some of the 10% ethanol blended gas into a glass jar, and let it set out at least overnight (or a bit longer). He observed that it had become cloudy from the accumulation of humidity.

While I’ve never tried such an experiment, I do note that many years ago, on occasion, I would run my little carbureted Toyota’s gas tank empty, and would then fill it up with 1 gallon each of Methanol, 100LL, Toluene, Xylene and Methyl Ethyl Ketone. I did so for at least two reasons: 1.) to get any water in the fuel tank & system out, and; 2.) to “clean out” any deposits that may have formed in the fuel system.

Of course, Gasoline and Water are different for several reasons, not the least of which is that Read the rest of this entry »

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Smithfield Foods Chinese Pork Project is a Wall Street Happy Meal Deal: American Prices Will Increase

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 29, 2013

If you like bacon, ham, pork sausage, barbecue, ribs, or any other pork product – including cold cuts & pizza – get ready to pay at least 2 – 4 times more, and for shortages.

Why?

Wall Street minions – who manage Smithfield, an American company no more – have no patriotic qualms about taking food off your table and out of your mouth to feed the mouths of the people who steal our nation’s military secrets, defraud our motion picture & music copyrights, and have an historical track record of Shanghai-ing anyone & everyone who gets in their way.

You think I’m kidding, or that I don’t know what I’m writing about?

Just recollect back a few months – oh, say about 7 – to Thanksgiving in November 2012 when pecans were 2x – 3x the price they were usually.

And why was that?

After all, pecan farmers had a record bumper crop… and that typically translates into lower prices for consumers.

It’s because the Chinese suddenly discovered they liked pecans, and were willing to pay premium prices (translate: much MORE then you’re willing to pay), and so the growers shipped pecans over to China.

As I continue to contend, IT’S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY.

Okay… so it may cost more. So what?

How about this?

Were you aware that the Chinese company that bought Smithfield sold pigs that had been fed a substance banned in the USA & England & other nations?

Yup.

Shuanghui Group, China’s largest meat processor, sold pigs fed Clenbuterol in 2011. Here are three links about the ordeal.

And, would it surprise you to find out that Goldman Sachs is one of the top investors?

1.) “According to Chinese government data, 18 outbreaks of food-related clenbuterol poisoning occurred between 1998 and 2007. The most recent report indicates one person died and more than 1,700 others fell ill.”

2.) “Meanwhile, at Jiyuan Shuanghui’s processing facilities, of the 689 pigs awaiting slaughter, 19 tested positive for clenbuterol. Shuanghui, which counts Goldman Sachs among its investors, has shut down the Jiyuan branch affected by the contamination so it can conduct its own inspection.”

3.) “And in recent months the additive has earned notoriety in China after a string of people got sick from eating pork products full of it. Hundreds took ill in one incident in March, and this week, 286 people in Hunan province after eating pork contaminated with ractopamine, a chemical very similar to clenbuterol. Chinese livestock farmers began using clenbuterol in pig feed in the late 1980s to boost growth and get animals to market faster, but it was banned in 2002 as the health risks of eating the meat became better understood. Clenbuterol-tainted meat dizziness, headaches, hand tremors, and other unpleasantness. It’s especially risky for people with heart troubles.”

Shuanghui Agrees to Acquire Smithfield Foods for $4.72B

By Shruti Date Singh and Jeffrey McCracken – May 29, 2013

Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd., China’s biggest pork producer, agreed to acquire Smithfield Foods Inc. (SFD) for about $4.72 billion to boost supplies for the nation that’s the biggest consumer of the meat.

Closely held Shuanghui, parent of Henan Shuanghui Investment & Development Co. (000895), will pay $34 a share for the Smithfield, Virginia-based producer, both companies said today in a statement. The offer is 31 percent more than yesterday’s closing share price.

China’s consumption of pork is rising with the expansion of its middle class while there are questions being asked about the safety of the country’s food supply. Smithfield’s livestock unit is the world’s largest hog producer, bringing about 15.8 million of the animals to market a year, according to the company’s website. It owns 460 farms and has contracts with 2,100 others across 12 U.S. states.

The takeover is valued at $7.1 billion including debt, which would make it the largest Chinese takeover of a U.S. company, according to Read the rest of this entry »

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Q: Why do hospitals charge $75 for aspirin? A: Because they can.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 2, 2012

It was once a long-standing joke that hospitals charged outrageous prices on medicines.

It’s not a joke anymore.

Once, a healthcare joke went like this:
Q: What’s the difference between a HMO, a PPO and the PLO?

A: You can negotiate with the PLO.

It’s not a joke anymore.

It should also be noted that a study conducted 26 years go by Jack D. McCue, Charles Hansen, and Peter Gal entitled “Hospital Charges for Antibiotics” found that:

“Hospital charges for intravenous antibiotics were obtained in a survey of 71 hospitals in 25 U.S. cities. Only 56.3% of the hospitals used their actual drug acquisition cost to calculate patient charges; the remainder used a base price derived from one of the wholesale price guides, which often seriously overstate the cost of antibiotics. Sixty-eight percent added a markup, averaging 134.5%, and 63.4% added a dispensing fee, averaging $5.47. A relatively high-dose, single-antibiotic regimen costs patients $50-$150 per day, independent of dose-preparation charges (average, $9.09 per dose) for a piggyback-type system or intravenous line-related charges. Antibiotics were least expensive in large hospitals and in those located in the northeastern United States. Charges for antibiotics are often inconsistently calculated, vary enormously among hospitals, and may be unfair to patients and confusing to physicians. Cost-conscious prescribing of antibiotics by physicians would be facilitated by a more consistent relationship between charges and true costs.”

That 1985 study may be found here.

The reader should also understand that in a hospital, ALL medications are administered by prescription only… even aspirin.

Cost Spotlight: A 443% Markup on Prescription Drugs

Kaiser Health News/USA Today shines a spotlight on increasing hospital costs specifically the price markup of over-the-counter and prescription drugs hospitals administer to patients.  The story examines Read the rest of this entry »

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Wal-Mart shoppers now jumping the “Fail-Mart” ship in droves

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, February 6, 2011

Personal experience from this evening’s shopping:

Brentwood, TN – Having earlier gone out for an appointment in the early evening hours, I decided to stop by the local Wal-Mart (WMT) on Nolensville Road/US Hwy 31 and purchase some grocery items on the way home. It was purely coincidental that “Super Bowl Sunday” was/is tomorrow.

One of the first stops I made at the “super Wal-Mart” (one that has a grocery store), was to the dairy case. Dairy cases are always located in the rear of every grocery store. (Why? Read the rest of this entry »

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U.S. Military Deaths: A Perspective

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 20, 2010

I am a U.S. Army veteran. Read the rest of this entry »

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Insurance costs and health-care reform: Are health insurers making huge profits?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 3, 2010

Are health insurers making huge profits?

Mar 5th 2010, 14:15 by M.S.

Warhol dollarYESTERDAY Barack Obama dropped in on Kathleen Sibelius‘s meeting with executives of America’s top five health insurers and read a letter from a constituent. Natoma Canfield, a self-employed house cleaner, had carcinoma 16 years ago; it has been in remission for 11 years. Last year Anthem Blue Cross, who provide her with a high-deductible ($2,500) individual plan, raised her premiums 25%, to $6,075. This year they’re raising them another 40%, to $8,500. Ms Canfield  closes her letter, “Please stay focused in your reform attempts as I and many others are in desperate need of your help.”

There’s no doubt that the Obama health-care reform bill would …Continue…

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Sex, Drugs, and Rock-n-Roll

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, November 4, 2010

Periodically, friends and family come to me seeking understanding about various medical and health related issues, which often includes information about procedures and medications.

And on occasion, I continue to be asked to identify certain medications.

Particularly problematic are the numerous herbs and Over The Counter (OTC) non-prescription remedies that neither treat nor cure, yet proliferate and line the pockets of those unscrupulous enough to market and sell them to the unsuspectingly ignorant.

On one such occasion, I was asked by a friend to identify several foreign concoctions of apparent Asian origin, which I succeed in identifying, though I suspect I merely added levity to our communication. Fortunately, the request wasn’t anything of any seriously substantial nature.

It’s becoming more difficult to identify many items, though I count myself fortunate to have access to the numerous resources I do.

Here’s the text of my response. Perhaps you’ll find it enlightening. …Continue…

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Come… and Go

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, February 8, 2010

And are you aware, that pound-for-pound, Viagra is MORE expensive than a fully loaded Mercedes-Benz S550 4Matic?

A fully-dressed, 2005 Mercedes-Benz S550 4Matic (their top-of-the-line/flagship luxury sedan) weighs …Continue…

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The cost of everything is going up.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, February 5, 2010

In today’s “Blondie” comic strip, the strip’s protagonist’s husband – Dagwood Bumstead – is seated at …Continue…

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Two Numbers – ONE BIG, one small

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, December 17, 2009

$9,100,000,000,000

Nine TRILLION, one hundred BILLION…

Remember another number.

Two.

During the reign of King George W. Bush, just TWO of his failed policies have cost Americans $9,100,000,000,000.

What two failed policies are those?

The Bu$h tax cuts, and the creation of a Rx (prescription drug “benefit” written wholly by Big Pharmaceutical industry cronies.

The U.S. Census Bureau’s most current estimation of the population of the United States places 308,171,505 people in the United States as of December 17, 2009.

Put another way, that’s a cost of $29, 529 per person.

As a result of deregulation of the financial industries – banks, insurance and stock brokerages – thus creating one giant incestuous financial orgy, Americans have directly suffered under the thumbs of bankers and insurance companies, while their Wall Street cohorts, in conjunction with imaginative thieves, have twiddled and fiddled to create “investment derivatives” – essentially a Ponzi schemed fiscal fraud – out of thin air. That house of cards having collapsed, has revealed what was suspected all along. Outside the transparent dressing room of his glass house, the king had no clothes.

Driven by greed and an insatiable lust for more, …Continue…

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