Category Archives: Consumer Interest

Added Scan Scan Dance to TSA

As a 3 year Veteran of TSA, and the senior screener (considered by years of total government service) and worked as a passenger screener and a checked baggage screener and qualified at that time on every piece of electronic technology and procedures at one of the airports listed in the article listed below, and met all requirements to advancement to a lead screener and supervisor, I am getting, as I was during those three years at one of the airports listed in the article below, getting a bit disgusted with TSA’s ever increasing need for technology to heck a public transportation passengers “STUFF” in order to meet the portion of TSA’s Mission statement to provide “excellent customer service” as part of their security methodology and to “provide the freedom to travel throughout the USA and the world safe and secure”.

They continue to use machines, designed by humans, with the help of computers, software, engineers, computerized assembly machines to detect “stuff” that could be used to put travels in danger, solely based on “Stuff” that has been used before and “stuff” that they think that could be used, that is similar to stuff that has been used before.

Basically data used in a reactive action to something that all ready been used. We citizens of the USA are a reactive society, taking action on something that has already happened in an effort to keep it from happening again. Yet, in doing so TSA decides that not only will we protect travelers from doing things that has already been done, TSA want’s to make the customer happy, thus the “CUSTOMER SERVICE” part of their mission statement.

I have always said and still hold to the statement – “YOU CAN NOT COMBINE CUSTOMER SATISFACTION AND SECURITY”, because those two things do not combine because a terrorist holding a valid ID and Valid boarding pass and a valid newly designed never seen before method or object (STUFF) that would threaten the lives and safety of travelers are considered those we must also provide with “Customer Satisfaction”. And in a society that continually holds to and personally and thru the media does not hold back on expressing these rights as a “violation of their rights to privacy”.

As mentioned above, the technology produced to screen human travelers “stuff” to determine if they are a potential threat to fellow travelers are the results of Human ideas. And Humans make mistakes. And electronics break down, software crashes and poof, you are left with the inability to screen “traveler’s Stuff”.

With the introduction of this new 3.2 million dollar potential investment in id and Boarding Pass screening devices does two things. It adds another electronic piece of equipment to do something a person can do (aka screener) adding dependency on machines for “traveler safety” and adds to the known psychological effect of complacency to the screener.

And now consider the idea that at least two times it caused a couple of passengers up to a 2.5 minute delay in getting to the next check point (180 seconds). This I am sure will cause a cry of “more delays”, and a definite complaint of “violation of the travelers privacy”.

Most of us have no idea what information is contained in bar codes and the magnetic strip on the back of our credit cards. I once ran my drivers licenses bar code over a grocery store scanner and it returned the results that stated my drivers licenses was a can of green beans.

And, there is a “profiling objection” which is where you screen passengers, not stuff. Security for Israel’s airports go through the passengers “stuff” but they do not screen “stuff” they screen “passengers” via many check points and conversations  to determine a potential threat. They have even incorporated a handheld lie detector to see if the travelers answer are deceptive (which means not necessarily a lie but with some answers are not really honest)

The TSA mentioned doing that and POOF – “violation of privacy, profiling etc.

Let me finish this rambling with this – “People Kill People”, “Stuff dose not.” As fast as we can build a new detector to detect new “Stuff” that can be used to kill thousands, terrorists are working on new ways not yet know by TSA or anyone but them.

The head of security at Israel’s airport said in an NBC news interview shortly after 9/11 that “the USA would spend Billions on increased Airport security or Billions on Burying the dead.” (It’s still on the web if you want to search for it). What he did not say is how much we would spend on providing and how much extra it would cost in making part of your mission to please all the people all the time (“excellent customer service”) and how that would screw things up.

Bottom line is electronic equipment increased security is not going to make things better, increase in screening people (and if you want to call it profiling, go ahead, because it’s profiling threats to travelers and has nothing to do with race) and it should be done soon before some one figures out how to pull the plug on the electronic “STUFF” screening funding.

Hunting in a Doc Blind

(I apologize for the formatting of this posting. Seems the WORD PRESS blog editor isn’t worth a shit. Spent 1 hour writing it and have spent the last two hours trying to get it to format correctly. It ignores my changes and my 60 wpm typing results in having to wait for this java editor to catch up. Anyway, on with the topic … but you might be able to guess what the next topic will be.)

If it walks like a Doc and Talks Like a Doc doesn’t necessarily mean its a Doc!
The Medical Services industry, an industry in which we blindly trust those who we believe are there to help us in times of physical distress.
Food for thought – If you were on your way to 7/11 for a Slurpee and a person dressed poorly, unshaven, reeked of body odor had a knife in his hand and approached you and said to you – “I believe you have a tumor and I can operate and take of that for you!”  What would you do. Run? Call the Police? Or if you were strong enough, would you subdue this person?
Well, we tend to do the opposite with someone who has MD after their name on an office door. The person in this case wears, perhaps, a white coat. Dressed nicely, and has a large staff and a waiting room filled with magazines that are at least 6 months old.
You pay this person to diagnose your ailment. And this person tells you that you have an aliment that needs to be removed via what is know as invasive Surgery. It will require you to report to a hospital and have this procedure done.
Without question, you are admitted the the hospital for the procedure. Without question you allow  unknown people do the procedure. One Doc, using drugs, puts you to sleep for the procedure. The person is in charge of shutting down your brain, via drugs. And this person is in charge of making sure that your brain is sleeping to a point that boarders death, and keeping it there so you don’t wake up during surgery and you don’t die during surgery.
Then the surgeon takes a sharp knife and cuts open your body and does his job of taking care of your ailment, surrounded by Nurses, assistants, Aids, or whatever.
Then upon completion someone sews you up. And in the recovery room people monitor your recovery until you are well enough to go home.
PROBLEM – You fearfully take action against the guy at the 7/11 .. But you do not question the Doctors who recommended the surgery, the Doctor that  performs the surgery, you do not question the person that is in charge of putting you to sleep, you do not question the people who take care of you afterwords, nor do you check out all the people who are involved in the whole process.
Fact – The person at 7/11 who approached you is Human. The People involved in your medical procedure are humans.  Yet, one you fear and the other you blindly trust.  Both of these situations are humans offering to cut you open for an ailment they, however they did it, diagnosed the ailment.
“The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) produced an article highlighting these medical malpractice lawsuit statistics, with regard to patient deaths:

106,000 patients die each year from the negative effects of medication
80,000 patients die each year due to complications from infections incurred in hospitals
20,000 deaths per year occur from other hospital errors
12,000 people die every year as a result of unnecessary surgery
7,000 medical malpractice deaths per year are attributed to medication errors in hospitals

This totals up to 225,000 deaths each year, due to medical negligence of some nature.  And that number is ever growing.”
What is it that prompted to write this?
Tuesday, Feb 21, 2011 I fired my doctor after a series of  incidents with her.
I have had some good doctors and some I should have questioned. Tuesday I decided I wasn’t putting up with this type of activity.
The incident I am about it explain mimics incidents  I have had with other doctors and their offices.
1. Appointment Time: If you have a job and must take off (sick leave, vacation time, or leave without pay) to see a Doctor for an appointment at, 3 p.m. you expect to been seen at 3 p.m. (I understand and it has happened, that things like heart attacks of other patients in the office may delay you being seen).
What happens too often in some offices is overlooking (for lack of a better word). Showing up for my appointment 10 minutes early (2:50 pm) and not seeing the Doctor until 4:15 pm is unacceptable. And in my case I made the appointment because of Blood Test Results that the Doctors office repeatedly called me to come in because the results were, and I quote “BAD”.
a. I pay a large insurance premium due to age
b. I pay a copay
c. And if I were not retired and working I pay  via lose of sick leave, vaction time, or loss of wages if I am off work without pay.
It is my feeling that when one has an appointment a 3 p.m. and isnot seen at 3 p.m. that the doctor should pay me for my lost time. And I have every intent to bill this doctor for my lost time.
2. Office environment: Staff behind the glass singing songs to what’s on the radio. A sneezing wheezing guy walking around and was presented with a box of fruit and vegetables from the staff while in the open door exam room. Left the room and took the present of goodies to his car and came back to the exam room. All the while sneezing and wheezing thru the waiting room, staff area, etc.
3. Office acoustics: Everyone in the office area. Includes waiting room and open exam rooms could hear the diagnosis of every patient and their treatment regime and calls to pharmacies for prescriptions. (Patient / Doctor Confidentiality Violation). Mr Sneezy Weezy was diagnosed with a contagious virus.
4. physician knowledge of Presenting Conditions: I originally made an appointment with this doctor in November because I had been stung, while fishing, by a sting ray. She was said to be a wound specialist. (not documented in my research of the Florida Medical Board).  I was Stung in the had and had a open puss oozing sore and a blister next to it. My right hand.  When I made the appointment I gave them the facts of this.
Upon seeing the doctor she held out her hand and shook my wounded hand and asked me why I was there?
After inspection .. the WOUND SPECIALIST had to look up what a Sting Ray was and the type of toxin it may have injected in my hand, which she had just shaken with her hand.
5. Exam continues: Then she went into my medical history. I told here that I had just moved to Florida from Virgina and could arrange for my 26 years of medical records to be sent to her. She said that it was not necessary.
I am one who believes that the more pieces of puzzle you have the clearer the picture becomes. It’s like buying a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle missing 750 pieces and trying to figure out what the total picture is. But NO .. she didn’t need that.
Then she asked about my alcohol intake. I admit I consume scotch more than I should. But she became fixated on that. My hand was no longer a problem, and without any further physical examination other than one look at my wound I began to get a lecture.
She ignored my previously diagnosed arthritis, my potential of having diabetes due to numb toes and a family history of it, my back pain due to bone spurs, and told me that all these symptoms were due to over use of Johnny Walker.

However had she had the pieces of the puzzle (my medical records) she would see that these things I described from my medical history started long before Johnny showed up. But she refused to listen.
Meanwhile the office staff where all loudly singing christmas carols.
6. Exam Results:  As stated before … they were annoounced loudly enough so that all the people in the whole office, waiting room heard that I was diagnosed to be an alcoholic. And she prescribed Librium to help me stop drinking.
Also she stated I had HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE. Put me on Blood Pressure Meds. What she didn’t hear and if she had my records she would see that every first blood pressure test I have had upon a Doctors visit is high. 10 minutes later it returned to normal. I requested that she take it again. She said okay. Never happened.
Also due to the hand thing she said I should get a Tetnas shot. I said okay. Never happened. Got a call at home a few hours later saying to come back in because they forgot to give me the shot.
She also gave me a script for blood test at a lab.
7. Tuesday: After being called twice requesting that it was urgent that I come in because of the blood test results, I showed up for my 3 p.m. Appointment.  75 minutes later she came into the exam room. (By this time I was fuming)
My wife was in the room, as I had given permission for her to know everything.
She looked at my wife and said how are we doing. (My wife was not the patient). Then she looked at me and asked me, “And how about you?”
Did not work well.  I told her that I was irritated because of a 75 minute wait.
That’s when she made the major mistake of making a statement that I had received from some other doctors in my lifetime (story at a later date on past doctors). She said “Well I had other patients that I had to see, and I haven’t even had time to have lunch. If you needed to see me on an urgent or emergency matter you should have said something.”
(Note: The result of the blood test was in the exam room before she came in. I read it and it was pretty close to what it always has been and she would have figured that out if she had my previous record.)
I walked out. She finished the appointment with my wife.
a. She said my being anemia was due to bone morrow problem due to drinking (NOTE: I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN ANEMIC)
b. She wrote a letter stating she refuses to see me again because I walked out. (Was explained to my wife it was for her liability protection.)
Moral of the story – Perhaps there are some people that know more about things than you realize yet look and act different, and  maybe there are professionals out there that know less that what we blindly trust.  So be sure the next time if it looks like a doc and walks like a doc …. Listen to see if it quacks!

Link to Doctor Mentioned above’s rating:

The Cost of Realibility — Out of Reach!

(Revised reprint from my Face Book Notes)

CIRCA – 1970, Owned an immaculate 1959 Chevy Impala. Believe I bought it (or if I have unconsciously blocked out my memory, my parents may have bought it) for $300. Low mileage, perfect condition.

And at that time, in order to finance my lifestyle, I  also worked at Franks Standard Station, in my home town,  3 nights a week and every other Sunday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m all by my self. Premium Gas sold for $0.36 a gallon then and a customer pumping their own gas not only did not exist but was taboo.

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IDEAS! Do They Create Money or Moans?

Have you ever experienced a sudden brain eruption, a light bulb above the head illumination, an all enlightening, all empowering,  a random unexpected zap of thought that just overpowers you? That overpowering explosion is the moment in which you have given birth to an IDEA!

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Money, Percentages, Perceptions and Trees

For what it’s worth , what is your idea of a lot of money?

Casino’s try to reduce the sense of loss or gain by using chips and terms like credit.

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