Those were the headlines on the front page of the Business & Finance section of the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) yesterday. Mark T. Bertolini – the CEO of Aetna since 2010 – stands to make a half billion dollars if Aetna successfully merges with CVS and he leaves his job. According to the WSJ, about $230 million will come from already vested stock appreciation rights while another $190 million would come from the common stock he already owns. An additional $60-$85 million is estimated to be his payout if he is terminated when the company sells itself. Read more
When the NRA announced this past week support for the restriction of “bump stocks” – a device that enables a semi-automatic rifle which can only fire one bullet per trigger pull to convert to the firing speed of a fully automatic rifle – people took notice because the NRA rarely, if ever gets behind the restriction of any firearm. Did the gunning down of hundreds of people attending a concert in Las Vegas by a mad gunman who used bump stocks on a dozen rifles make the NRA realize how insanely easy it is for lunatics to be able to convert semi-automatic rifles into rapid fire weapons? Yes and no. Read more
Several years ago I started making donations to sanctuaries specializing in the rescue of animals from slaughter houses and abused “homes.” The stories were heartbreaking and I knew my dollars were primarily going to the veterinary care of the animals, food, shelter, and the selfless staff devoted to taking care of these animals.
When a cow escapes from a slaughter house in Brooklyn, I cheer for the cow (and curse the people chasing the petrified animal) and often send a donation to the kind person who rescued the terrified animal. So, before I go further, I want to unequivocally say these charities deserve our support because they spotlight the abuse and horrific way people treat most animals. They make us think twice about our choices. Read more
Tomorrow will mark 16 years since 9-11 with most of us remembering 9-11 as the day that changed the world. 2,996 people were killed and thousands more were wounded. Survivors were left without fathers, mothers, children, siblings, aunts, uncles, grandparents, husbands, wives, partners, and friends.
Sean Booker, a 35-year old Xerox technician was working in the Marsh and McLennan office on the 93rd floor of the North Tower when the first hijacked plane (American Airlines Flight 11) struck at 8:46 am between the 93rd and 99th floors. Sean Booker lost his life. Read more
We envision a life free of diabetes and all its burdens, which is fueled by our mission to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of al people affected by diabetes. ~American Diabetes Association
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) works to “prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.” The organization does this by education, advocacy, and providing grants for research.
Approximately 30 million Americans have diabetes with the majority (an estimated 29 million according to the ADA) suffering from Type 2. An additional estimated 84 million Americans 18 and older are prediabetic. In other words, 113 million people or 1 in 3 people in the United States suffer from prediabetes or diabetes. Read more
It’s not that I want the bees to die. I just don’t want to share my house with them.
There is a beehive growing on the second floor porch of my house, three feet from my favorite white rocking chair that happens to be my de facto hiding-from-the-world space. For days, I watch the bees work on their hive which gives me a full understanding of how the phrase “busy as a bee” came to be.
My mind wanders and it occurs to me that the housing industry would be completely different if we humans could figure out how to build homes as quickly as bees build hives. They all work together and don’t seem to worry about sub contractors not showing up; and the CEO is a female – a queen bee, to be exact. The bees actually work in beautiful harmony, which makes me feel guilty because I don’t want to share my porch with a beehive that is doubling in size every few days. Read more
Losses must be answered, grief redressed. ~ Julie Orringer (from Neighbors, a short story published in The Paris Review, Issue 221, Summer, 2017)
Injustices occur in countries across the world every single day and while these events often shock or sadden us, there are incidents that truly outrage us. The treatment of Otto Warmbier, the 22-year old University of Virginia college student, at the hands of the North Korean regime has touched many an American and there have been more than a few who have demanded revenge. Read more
Many people identify with either the Republican or Democrat party but in reality, most voters fall somewhere between the conservative (Republican) and the liberal (Democrat) spectrum because there are so many issues – economic, environmental, education, healthcare, transportation, and more – affecting people and their beliefs.
We may be fiscally conservative and socially liberal or socially conservative but liberal in our views on education or healthcare. Whatever the combination is, the reality is that the closest the votes are to the center, the easier the compromise because both sides don’t have to give up too much. The further the votes are to the right or left, the harder it is to reach agreement because there is too much distance to bring opposites together. Read more
The Salvation Army is an international group of Christians who claim the Salvation Army is a church. The funny thing is I can’t remember the last time I drove down the road and saw a church with the sign “Salvation Army” in front of it although I see signs in front of other churches identifying the property as Methodist, Evangelical, Presbyterian, Catholic, and more. In fact, I don’t recall ever seeing a church with the words “Salvation Army” on a sign in front of a church. So, where is the Church of the Salvation Army? Read more
A few months ago, I sent a very conservative friend the Donald Trump Chia Pet as a gift. This is the same friend that I sent a life-sized cardboard cutout of Hillary Clinton a few years ago after I saw a life-sized cardboard cutout of Sarah Palin in his dining room and lost my appetite. Although my friend told me he used the Hilary Clinton cutout to catch oil leaks under his car in the garage, I sensed the Donald Trump Chia Pet was given a more honorable place in his home (and he was, next to some brass knockers). Read more