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The Glenn and Helen Show: Fixing America’s Health Care System

Tuesday, November 21st, 2006

With the Democrats back in Congressional majority, there’s more talk of health care regulation, and perhaps even a Canada-style socialized-medicine approach. Dr. David Gratzer is the author of a new book, %%AMAZON=1594031533 The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save American Health Care,%% and — as the foreword by Milton Friedman might suggest — he suggests a very different approach. He has practiced in both the Canadian and American medical systems, so he knows the flaws in both approaches.

Glenn Reynolds and Helen Smith discuss HMO’s, single-payor, Health Savings Accounts, and how Wilbur Mills and Fanne Fox (well, mostly Wilbur Mills) played a major role in creating today’s problems. Plus, what to do about them.

The Glenn and Helen Show: Fixing The American Health Care System

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Update on the "Lumpy" Case

Monday, November 20th, 2006

It appears that the young man who attempted to rob Greg “Lumpy” Lambert that I posted a href=”http://drhelen.blogspot.com/2006/11/self-defense-tennessee-style.html”about here /a is a suspect a href=”http://www.volunteertv.com/home/headlines/4700726.html” in another Tennessee murder /a (Hat tip: a href=”http://www.knoxviews.com/node/2999″KnoxViews/a): br /br /blockquoteKnox County Sheriff Tim Hutchison says a man who allegedly tried to rob Knox County Commissioner Greg Lambert is a suspect in the murder of a Walgreens truck driver.br /br /Sheriff Hutchison made the announcement today at the commission meeting.br /br / Hutchison says he will ask a grand jury to indict 19-year-old Kane Stackhouse on murder charges Tuesday.br /br /So far Stackhouse has not been charged with anything in connection with the murder of 53-year-old David Lindsey behind the Walgreens in Powell early in the morning on November 11th.br /br /Stackhouse had not even been named a suspect until Monday.br /br /But Stackhouse is charged with attempted robbery for allegedly pulling a gun on Commissioner Lambert about ten hours after Lindsey was found dead.br /br /Deputies say Lambert foiled the alleged robbery by pulling a gun on Stackhouse./blockquotebr /br /Perhaps Mr. Lambert’s quick thinking and act of self-defense saved other victims from further harm. Perhaps my hometown PC alternative rag emThe MetroPulse/em will a href=”http://www.metropulse.com/articles/2006/16_46/editorial.shtml”eat the words they used in this sad editorial /a that described Mr. Lambert as a “clown” and his act of bravery as one of recklessness. What do they consider to be acceptable behavior when confronted with a gunman, groveling on the floor?

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Playing the Syria Card?:

Monday, November 20th, 2006

Claudia Rosett @ The Rosett Report spots an alarming development in the “realpolitik” of Iraq: “Syria’s foreign minister, Walid Moallem, has just dropped in on Baghdad to say that his government wants to help stabilize Iraq, and would like to see a timetable for American troop withdrawal. And in the U.S., the Iraq Study Group, co-chaired by James Baker and Lee Hamilton, and slated to present its list of options to President Bush in the very near future, appears to be considering these ideas.” (Read it HERE)

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Health Care Podcast

Monday, November 20th, 2006

Do you worry that we will be seeing Hillary Care or some version of socialized medicine in the near future? Is more government intervention into healthcare the answer? As a libertarian-leaning health service provider and psychologist, I say “no,” it would be a step in the wrong direction with longer waiting times and horror stories for the truly sick. The healthy might think socialized medicine is an improvement because it’s cheap, but you get what you pay or don’t pay for. Imagine being put on a waiting list to have a life threatening condition like cancer or a heart condition evaluated. Isn’t your life worth more than money? br /br /In addition, do we really want the government making decisions about our healthcare and expanding the power it already has? I don’t. American health care gets better and better, yet more and more Americans state they are dissatisfied with their coverage. Why? Are we a nation of whiners? br /br /We talk with Dr. David Gratzer, a physician who has worked in both the Canadian and U.S. healthcare system and is the author of a new book, a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1594031533?ie=UTF8tag=wwwviolentkicomlinkCode=as2camp=1789creative=9325creativeASIN=1594031533″The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save American Health Care./aimg src=”http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wwwviolentkicoml=as2o=1a=1594031533″ width=”1″ height=”1″ border=”0″ alt=”" style=”border:none !important; margin:0px !important;” / He discusses how capitalism can improve health care, why we are so unhappy with the current state of health care and his proposals for reform. Both Glenn and I read the book and it is chock full of information about how the current health care system originated and how to change it for the better. br /br /You can download the podcast directly a href=”http://richmedia.pjmedia.com/audio/politicscentral/glenn_helen_show/20061120-Gratzer.mp3″here/a or for dial-up users, listen a href=”http://politicscentral.com/2006/11/19/the_glenn_and_helen_show_fixin.php”here./a You can visit our archives a href=”http://instapundit.com/podcasts.php”here /ato listen to previous episodes. br /br /This podcast is brought to you by Volvo at a href=”http://www.volvocars.us/”volvocars.us/a.

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A Different New York

Sunday, November 19th, 2006

Okay, I was waiting for Megan McArdle, a lifetime New Yorker, a href=”http://www.janegalt.net/archives/009529.html” to tell us her story /aof being robbed in the city for the first time in her 33 years…but the story has so far never materialized so I’ll tell you my own “Robbery and the City” story. I am frankly amazed that it took 33 years for her to get robbed in NYC, for me, it was a matter of about a week or so before I was treated to what used to be a typical New York experience. But my experience in New York was a different one than the experience one would have in the city today–it was the 1980′s, pre-Rudy Giuliani and during the a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crack_Epidemic”crack epidemic /aaround NYC. I was 21, a graduate student at the a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_School_for_Social_Research”New School for Social Research/a and fresh from Tennessee where I had lived on my own for 3-4 years prior, but had never been robbed at knifepoint. br /br /I had moved into an apartment on 11th street and first avenue in Manhattan over a rat infested bakery–that is a story for another day–but my graduate school was in walking distance of my apartment or I could take the subway from sixth avenue back to first on the L train. After class one night around 9, the other students and I walked out, most of the class was going in the opposite direction and one gallant fellow even offered to walk me to the subway. I, of course, declined, not being used to asking others to walk me anywhere. br /br /I made my way toward the subway, thinking about what we had discussed in class, not paying attention to the fact that I was passing Union Square park, where drug dealers and junkies congregated, but for the most part, they just asked you if you wanted weed etc. This night, however, one of the junkies was hiding in the shadows near a building and grabbed my arm, branishing a knife. If you have ever been the victim of a violent crime, most likely, you will remember everything happening in slow motion, at least I did. The black male told me he had killed other women and made it clear that he would kill me. I felt sick as I gave him my high school class ring and a birthstone I had worn since childhood as well as the money I had in my pocket. I had no weapon and no way to protect myself, in New York at that time, it was a href=”http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C0CE7D81F39F930A3575BC0A966958260″illegal even to carry mace/a. I felt not only exploited by this perpetrator but by the city as well. br /br /The story ends well for me, I noticed the junkie was high and he seemed shaky and nervous. I saw a cab coming towards us and I jumped in front of it, figuring it would be better to be hit by a cab and go to the hospital than risk getting knifed. Luckily, the cab stopped before it hit me and I jumped in and asked the driver to take me home. I had no money and the cab driver cursed me, even when I asked him to stop at my bank (I had my bank card in a pocket). When I told him I had been robbed, his reply was, “that was your boyfriend, quit trying to put one over on me.” “Wow”, I thought to myself, “welcome to New York.” br /br /My roommate just laughed when I got back to the apartment and told her I was going to call the police to report the crime and she was right, no one took it seriously. br /br /I still wonder sometimes if this thief ever hurt someone else who didn’t get away. I blame myself for not doing more to have stopped him, but I am grateful that I got away that night without being physically harmed. br /br /I sometimes wonder what it would have been like to have lived in New York when Giuliani was mayor or afterwards, for it seems like night and day when I go to visit now. It is so much cleaner and nicer and I hear that the police take crimes more seriously now. Any mayor (along with the police department) who could so totally change that city from the post 80′s New York that I knew to what it is today must surely have what it takes to be a fine President.

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Hanson on Politics and War

Saturday, November 18th, 2006

Today’s essay from Victor Davis Hanson looks at the state of play in the world today.

  • Gut-check time for the Democrats. “Already the Democrats are learning, as is eternally true of our wonderful political system, that loud opposition is not the same as being responsible for governance.”

  • Israel: “Now more than ever … nearly all alone.”
  • Carterism “is a new postmodern pathology in which smug piety, dressed up in evangelical new-age Christianity, pronounces from afar moral censure on the more righteous party.”
  • World War II Then and Now

( Read it all HERE)

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Recalling Milton Friedman:

Saturday, November 18th, 2006

Claudia Rosett @ The Rosett Report remembers her long acquaintence with Milton Friedman: “We are moving into a century beset by another war of ideas, fighting enemies who thrive on death-cult destruction, bred under systems that throttle individual freedom. Milton Friedman spent his life stocking our arsenal with precepts that can help us win this war, if we so choose.” (Read it HERE)

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Support Conservative Nonconformists

Friday, November 17th, 2006

I checked out a href=”http://fallingdominos.blogspot.com/2006/11/giuliani-in-08.html”this post on Rudy Giuliani /a at the blog of one of my readers, Will Conway, who describes himself as “a high school student from Connecticut, and I am interested in US politics. I consider myself pretty far right on the political scale, and hold some controversial opinions. I hope you enjoy this blog.” br /br /Please go a href=”http://fallingdominos.blogspot.com/index.html”take a look at his blog /aand support young people who lean right–the new generation of nonconformists. Young people love to think of themselves as rebels and nonconformists in their “liberal” outlook, but the truth is, any kid who leans right today is the real rebel and has to go against the grain to have such views. Please support those young men like Will who are willing to be different.

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Rumsfeld Up, Romney Down

Friday, November 17th, 2006

Romney — Attractive for his age, but “Sounds like my grandmother.”

Conservatives at the American Spectator’s annual dinner applauded soon to be former SecDef Don Rumsfeld, but gave a disappointed thumbs down to presidential hopeful Mitt Romney. Pajamas Washington editor Richard Miniter was in attendance.

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Blog Week in Review, November 17, 2006: Midterm Elections ’06

Friday, November 17th, 2006

PJ Media and the Midterm Elections of 2006: Andrew Marcus and Richard Miniter (PJM in Washington) are the guest panelists and discuss three topics: • The Citizen Journalist In Action: how PJ Media armed individuals with small video cameras (%%AMAZON=B000HAOVC6 Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom%%) to cover events on the Day of (mostly) the Democrats. • Will bloggers sell out? And what does "selling out" really mean as far as bloggers are concerned? • In the short-term, what's next?: Panelists toss out topics that they think will emerge as significant issues (or intensify as issues) in the next week to ten days in the blogosphere. Ed Driscoll produces and Austin Bay moderates. Brought to you by Volvo USA.

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The New Underclass

Friday, November 17th, 2006

Are White, working-class boys a href=”http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/11/15/nboys15.xml”the new underclass/a? (Thanks Mercurior):br /br /blockquoteWhite working-class boys have become the new “underclass”, a report by Iain Duncan Smith, the former Conservative leader, warns today.br /br /Boys from low-income white families are bottom of the heap in school performance, trailing behind every other major ethnic group.br /br /The report argues that family breakdown, parental breakdown and peer pressure that it is not “cool to study” are the key factors in the collapse in educational achievements. It also cites drug and alcohol abuse by parents./blockquotebr /br /Where do boys get the idea that it is “not cool” to study?

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Another Stupid Quiz

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

Okay, a href=”http://theanchoressonline.com/2006/11/16/3207/”the anchoress /asucked me into this quiz and I don’t even watch South Park:br /br /table border=0 bgcolor=black cellspacing=2 cellpadding=10tr bgcolor=whitetd align=centerBa href=http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=takequiz_id=1260font color=#505A84Which South Park kid are you most like?/font/a/Bpfont color=#505A84 size=4bTweek/b/fontpYou are extremely hyper… mainly because of your high caffiene intake. You feel like you’re under too much pressure.pa href=http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=takequiz_id=1260img alt=”Personality Test Results” border=0 src=”http://www.youthink.com/quiz_images/quiz1260outcome6.gif”/a/td/trtrtd align=centera href=http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=takequiz_id=1260font face=verdana size=2 color=whitebClick Here to Take This Quiz/B/font/abrfont size=1 color=C0C0C0 face=verdanaBrought to you by a href=http://www.youthink.com/quiz.aspfont color=whiteYouThink.com/font/a quizzes and personality tests./font/td/tr/tablebr /br /br /Anyone out there watch South Park–who is this Tweek fellow? Is he lame?

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Careers Always, Readers Never @ The L.A. Times

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

PJM’s Media correspondent Catherine Seipp looks at the loony billionaire’s ideas for the the Los Angeles Times DIY renovation (‘Bring in Maureeen Dowd!’). Elitism and insecurity are the hallmarks of this media culture in which “Those who work there care a great deal about their careers and very little about their readers.” Not a bad description of many of our dying daily newspapers. (Read it all HERE)

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Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

Carolyn Ramsey, who is guest blogging at the Volokh Conspiracy a href=”http://volokh.com/posts/1163390571.shtml”shares her research /aon Intimate Homicides–here is a sample:br /br /blockquoteLack of attention to non-lethal intimate violence may have been ‘the normal state of affairs’ throughout most of American history. Prior to the 1980s, only the colonial era (especially 1640 to 1680) and the late Victorian era (especially 1870 to 1890) witnessed sustained efforts to curb wife-beating and ‘unnatural severity’ toward children. However, scholars have overstated the level of public apathy toward men’s homicidal aggression against women. Leading criminal law casebooks, numerous law review articles, and books by influential legal scholars and historians repeat the erroneous claim that, in the past, the legal doctrines of self-defense and provocation endorsed men’s brutality, whereas women were severely punished for perpetrating intimate violence.br /br /In fact, the converse was true. Data culled from dusty criminal case files in New York and Colorado demonstrates that, in both the eastern and western United States, men accused of killing their intimates often received stern punishment, while women charged with similar crimes were treated with leniency . . . /blockquotebr /br /It is quite an eye opener–a href=”http://volokh.com/posts/1163390571.shtml”go take a look/a.

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Cyber-Rights Now: An Interview with the EFF’s Brad Templeton

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

"Because the Internet is entirely made of private property, things like the First and Fourth Amendments do not necessarily apply." Internet pioneer and current Chairman of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Brad Templeton discusses how the Net does not give you the protections you might think you have, and the intricacies of copy-right control in the digital age. PJM's Special Correspondent for Technology and Culture Andrew Keen conducts this exclusive podcast.

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Dollars for Bolton

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

A campaign – fancifully initiated by Claudia Rosett at her PajamasXpress blog – to raise money independently to pay United Nations ambassador John Bolton’s salary has picked up a surprising head of steam. The intention of this campaign is to enable President Bush to reappoint Bolton via another recess appointment, avoiding an extremely difficult confirmation process in Congress. A second recess appointment would have meant no salary for the UN ambassador.

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Former Pariah,

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

currently the most popular belle at the Democratic ball in DC: meet Joe Lieberman. (Captain’s Quarters). It’s the magical effect of having the 51st seat!

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Second Holocaust Watch

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

From PajamasXpress blogger Ron Rosenbaum: Back in 2002 I initiated a major controversy among Jewish writers by daring to mention the possibility of a “second Holocaust”–the destruction of the State of Israel, most likely through a nuclear exchange. I quoted Iranian mullah Hashemi Rasfanjani declaring that Iran would not be particularly upset to lose 10 or 15 million people in a nuclear exchange with Israel if it resulted in the extermiation of 5 million Jews there and left a billion or more Muslims alive. (Read it all HERE)

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The Sanity Squad: “We’ve only just begun….”

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

The election is over but the analysis has only just begun. “It’s all theatre. What the Democrats are going to do for the next 2 years is ‘put on a show.’…. This whole notion that the Democrats have this noble history is about as credible as believing little green men built the pyramids.”

The Sanity Squad: Post-Election-Mortum

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On the Edge in Lebanon

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

“If civil war does erupt, the notion that Hezbollah will emerge victorious is silly, because nobody will be victorious. Everybody will lose.” In this exclusive podcast, Michael Totten talks with Tony Badran ( The Syria Monitor and Across the Bay) on the current atmosphere in Syria and Lebanon, and the prospects of another civil war in the region.

On the Edge of Another Lebanon War?

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HANSON: ‘Meet the New Policy, Same as the Old Policy’

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

“We should remember a few things about the return of “realism” which is really just an academic veneer to the old isolationism. This was a policy that gave us the arming of Osama bin Laden et al. to stop the Soviets in Afghanistan, sort of played Iran off against Iran in their murderous war of the 1980s, abandoned the Kurds, favored the Soviet Gorbachev over the Russian Yeltsin, stopped outside Baghdad and let the Shiites and Kurds be gunned down after urging them to revolt, let Milosevic do his murdering unopposed, and established a revolving door in the Middle East.” (Read it all HERE)

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Interview with Popular Mechanics

Monday, November 13th, 2006

a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00005N7SA?ie=UTF8tag=wwwviolentkicomlink_code=as3camp=211189creative=373489creativeASIN=B00005N7SA”img alt=”popmechcov.jpg” src=”http://instapundit.com/archives2/images/popmechcov.jpg” width=”122″ align=right border=0 height=”160″ //aGlenn and I have been getting a lot of out of town visitors lately–this time it’s a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00005N7SA?ie=UTF8tag=wwwviolentkicomlinkCode=as2camp=1789creative=9325creativeASIN=B00005N7SA”Popular Mechanics/aimg src=”http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wwwviolentkicoml=as2o=1a=B00005N7SA” width=”1″ height=”1″ border=”0″ alt=”" style=”border:none !important; margin:0px !important;” / editors, David Dunbar and Angela Diegel, who joined us for dinner. What do you do if you are like me–mechanically challenged to the point where installing a DVD player is considered a huge triumph and using a light kit to screw in a light bulb is your biggest victory? These experts have the answers.br /br /They discuss how emPopular Mechanics/em uses the web and their magazine to provide information to people with a href=”http://www.popularmechanics.com/how_to_central/”how-to clinics /aand a href=”http://www.popularmechanics.com/”articles /athat help both the novice like myself and those who are much more experienced expand upon their mechanical skills and understand how things work. They also tell us how their magazine holds the attention of scores of male readers (90% of their circulation) without sports or naked women. How do they do it? br /br /You can listen directly by a href=”http://politicscentral.com/2006/11/12/the_glenn_and_helen_show_old_m.php”going here/a and clicking on the gray Flash player, or you can download the file directly by a href=”http://richmedia.pjmedia.com/audio/politicscentral/glenn_helen_show/20061114-PopMechanics.mp3″clicking right here./a A lo-fi version suitable for dialup is available a href=”http://richmedia.pjmedia.com/audio/politicscentral/glenn_helen_show/20061114-PopMechanics-lofi.mp3″here./a Better still, you can subscribe via iTunes, by a href=”http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=116559643s=143441″clicking here./abr /br /This podcast is sponsored by Volvo at a href=”http://www.volvocars.us/”volvocars.us. /a

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Self Defense, Tennessee Style

Monday, November 13th, 2006

Last night while watching the local Knoxville news, a href=”http://www.wate.com/Global/story.asp?S=5669224nav=menu7_2_1″the lead story /awas a triumph in self defensive gun use. Greg “Lumpy” Lambert, a Knoxville commissioner was robbed at gun point at his car dealership. Even though the robber had the draw on Lambert, that did not stop him from protecting himself and his business:br /br /blockquoteLambert, who is a strong gun rights activist and member of the National Rifle Association, reached into his pocket and pulled out his gun.br /br /”I did a more proper draw out and up, and of course at that point I said, ‘Drop it,’ Lambert said. “He said he didn’t want any trouble. He just wanted to leave. I said, ‘You’re not leaving with that gun.’ Of course, I was using some profanities. I have to confess in a tense situation I can have a potty mouth.”br /br /Lambert says Stackhouse dropped his gun on the floor and fled. He left his driver’s licence at the business.br /br /Knox county authorities arrested him several hours later./blockquotebr /br /I love the picture of “Lumpy” a href=”http://www.wate.com/Global/story.asp?S=5669224nav=menu7_2_1″drawing his gun here/a–I wonder how many news stations would feature such a positive gun story like this outside of Tennessee or the South?

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Sunday, November 12th, 2006

Dr. Helen–a a href=”http://www.keshertalk.com/archives/2006/11/shrink_wars_dr.php”therapeutic version /a of Little Green Footballs?

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The Lure of the Big Screen TV

Sunday, November 12th, 2006

Glenn and I recently turned part of our basement into a podcast studio and media center, and just bought a big screen tv for it, a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000GHL812?ie=UTF8tag=wwwviolentkicomlinkCode=as2camp=1789creative=9325creativeASIN=B000GHL812″actually this one,/aimg src=”http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wwwviolentkicoml=as2o=1a=B000GHL812″ width=”1″ height=”1″ border=”0″ alt=”" style=”border:none !important; margin:0px !important;” / which is 46 inches long. I do watch some TV, but usually dvd’s or shows like emSex and the City /emthat I record. But watching the news on the big screen tv with high definition has a different feel than watching it on my small one without high def. It is more personal and engaging, like I know the people who are coming up on my screen. The news seems more “real” and urgent than it does on a small tv. I wonder how this feel plays into our psyche. Given the more personal feel of newer and better TVs, I wonder if people are more swayed by the media images that they see, since it sounds and feels more real than in years past. I wonder how this plays itself out in politics. br /br /My patients, regardless of political party, often come in and parrot to me the news they hear on tv without question. You know, the Dems are great, the Republicans evil and such. When I watched the news just now with Nancy Pelosi and Wolf Blitzer, it seemed that they were right in my media room, talking to me personally. TV encourages people to think by linking images in their brains. Are these images stronger and more persuasive on a big screen with high def like the new ones out than they were on the smaller less clear ones? Now that tvs are getting cheaper and cheaper as well as bigger and clearer, will the emotions of viewers become even easier to manipulate? And if so, how will that play out in a medium that is captured by the liberal media? As tv’s get bigger, clearer, and cheaper, will we start to see blue everywhere?

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