The invasion and violation of personal liberties has gotten beyond control, and we touch on that subject in this episode.
The following are the show notes used to record this episode. They are here for your reference and convenience.
If you are one of those individuals who received the flu vaccine this season and still got the flu, chances are good you’ve got company.
Federal officials this week said this season’s flu vaccine, already acknowledged to be not highly effective, is performing worse than earlier estimated.
The vaccine is only 18 percent effective against the dominant H3N2 strain of the flu in circulation, according to HealthDay
, a National Institutes of Health online news publication. That’s down from a predicted effectiveness level of around 23 percent, estimated in mid-January.
A manager at the Roudebush Veteran Affairs Medical Center in Indianapolis appears to mock the mental health problems of returning combat veterans in an email to her employees.
The email obtained by The Indianapolis Star contains photographs of a toy Christmas elf posing as a patient in what appears to be the hospital’s transitional clinic for returning veterans. In one photograph, the elf pleads for Xanax. In another, he hangs himself with an electrical cord.
The woman who sent the email is Robin Paul, a licensed social worker who manages the hospital’s Seamless Transition Integrated Care Clinic. The clinic provides returning veterans with transition assistance, including mental health and readjustment services.
When initially asked about the email, Paul responded, “Oh my goodness.” She then referred a reporter to the hospital’s public affairs department, which emailed The Star a statement on her behalf.
“I would like to sincerely apologize for the email message and I take full responsibility for this poor judgment,” Paul said. “I have put my heart and soul into my work with Veterans for many years. I hold all Veterans and military personnel in the highest regard and am deeply remorseful for any hurt this may have caused.”
The Dec. 18 email was sent to the “IND STICC Team” with the subject, “Naught Elf in the STICC clinic.”
“So, photos have appeared that indicate that the STICC clinic may have been invaded,” the email says. “Looks like this magical character made his way through a few areas.”
One photo depicts the elf peering between the legs of a female doll. “Trying his skills as a primary care provider (doing a pap),” the email says.
Another shows the elf next to a sticky note with the words, “Out of XANAX — please help!” A caption says, “Self-medicating for mental health issues when a CNS would not give him his requested script.”
A third photograph shows the elf hanging from a strand of Christmas lights. “Caught in the act of suicidal behavior (trying to hang himself from an electrical cord),” the email says.
It is unclear from the email whether other VA employees were involved in the joke, but a note visible in one photo appears to include directions about passing the elf to others.
Webb said she didn’t know how many employees were involved.
The maker of Children’s Tylenol agreed to plead guilty to a federal criminal charge of knowingly selling adulterated bottles of its painkillers for children and infants. The drugs were recalled in 2010 because they contained metal particles.
Johnson & Johnson subsidiary McNeil Consumer Healthcare ‒ which makes Infants’ and Children’s Tylenol and Children’s Motrin ‒ agreed to pay $25 million to resolve the case, the Associated Press reported, citing court documents. The deal came at a plea hearing Tuesday afternoon.
“The proposed criminal resolution is sufficient to punish McNeil for its past failures and to deter McNeil from violating” federal law in the future, prosecutors wrote in a memo to the judge overseeing the case.
Metal particles ‒ including nickel, iron and chromium ‒ were introduced during the manufacturing process at McNeil’s plant in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania. The company began a voluntary recall in April 2010. The drugs may also have contained more of the active drug ingredient than specified, the company said in a statement at the time.
If he keeps his nose clean, sanitation worker Kevin McGill of Sandy Springs, Ga., might just make it through his 30-day sentence (to be served on consecutive weekends) for disturbing wealthy residents by picking up the trash too early in the morning – just in time to celebrate National Garbage Man Day – June 17.
Mr. McGill, a new employee of a company contracted to do sanitation work in Sandy Springs, was cited for picking up trash just after 5 a.m. one morning, according to WSB-TV.
A city ordinance limits trash pickup to between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. in order to allow the wealthy suburbans there to sleep peacefully.
One of the fundamental questions raised by this case is whether an employee or the employer should be punished for a violation of the law. Typically, prosecutors go after the company.
But Sandy Springs prosecutor Bill Riley told local media that he’s tried citing companies with little result and so has chosen to go after the individual employees instead. “Fines don’t seem to work,” Riley said, according to WSB-TV in Atlanta. “The only thing that seems to stop the activity is actually going to jail.”
Mr. Riley sought the maximum punishment of 30 days in jail – and the judge agreed. This is the second sanitation worker he has prosecuted for the same infraction.