On the topic of sting operations: Lets get this straight. It’s permitted to have the police use outstretched hands and tactics to try to get someone to purchase narcotics they otherwise would not have had. Narcotics this person may have purchased only because they were emotionally distressed that day. Then the police storm the “criminal” with squad cars and drawn weapons forcing the “criminals” body to possibly go into a “fight or flight” REACTION, then they shoot him because he ran or fought back? Hmm, don’t you just love the government? What if I went out and sold doughnuts to police and drew a weapon to see how they react? Just an example of course, but it doesn’t matter the circumstances or the substance. Killing someone because of a normal reaction they have to your bullshit tactics is not right. It’s sad how many people I see being gunned down by police lately and not one of them are armed. The main defense for this is “but there are some who are armed, and we perceived them as being dangerous”. Boy how did we function back in the day without killing anyone we perceived as a threat? Oh yeah we used caution, common sense, and hand to hand maneuvers (Or how about a fucking taser or other less than lethal device). All these cops with itchy trigger fingers are arguably just as dangerous to society as most criminals, and their actions are defended and viewed as justified. I am not one of those believers. Now don’t get me wrong there are many excellent police officers out there that follow the law, use common sense and are an asset to public safety. This article does not address those individuals, nor is it intended to belittle or knock all police officers. I am just saying police on many sides have too much power and unregulated control. Hell they even have control over life and death these days.

A. Steinmetz (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Many people have been waiting for the grand age of twenty-five to finally have lower car insurance rates. I am twenty-six myself, and I was very much disappointed when I turned twenty-five, as my rates didn’t go down. In fact, the cost for car insurance almost doubled! While trying to find out why, I came across some policies and statistics that companies like Esurance use.

Because of these factors and other statistics, I end up paying high insurance rates. Over $150.00 every month for the state minimum required insurance.

 

 

Factor #1: Driving History (Acceptable)

Alright I’m cool with that. Obviously a persons driving record is a major risk assessment. Previous accidents or speeding means that individual may continue to take such risks, and therefore their insurance rate should be higher. Where as someone with a clean driving record means they likely don’t take risks and are better drivers. They get lower rates because the insurance company doesn’t expect many claims.

 

Factor #2: Location (Acceptable)

I understand this one as well. Insurance rates are usually higher in the more densely populated areas, high rates of crime, and locations that have a high rate of claims. These statistically create more risk for the insurance company.

 

Factor #3: Coverage Levels and Vehicle Value (Acceptable)

Different coverage levels are ways to create balance in premium costs and future deductibles. Fair enough, and vehicle values represent how much money the insurance will have to pay out in the event of a claim. Sure, that’s valid.

 

Factor #4: Drivers (Unacceptable!)

Here is one area I feel statistics are not enough. I’m being punished for other peoples mistakes or risk taking. Just because other people can’t drive, or refuse to drive safely, why should I be charged more!? Until you see a speeding ticket on my record, or some other actual proof that I’m taking risks out there, I need a clean driver history discount! Just keep insurance rates low, until someone messes up. Then and only then, should they double the rates.

Excerpt from the Esurance website:

“Insurance companies charge young, inexperienced drivers— both male and female— higher auto insurance rates since they’re more likely to cause an accident or file an auto insurance claim during their young driving careers.
Likewise, mature drivers generally see auto insurance premiums increase as they get older. This is due to the higher rate of accident claims among older drivers. To help combat this expense, Esurance offers a discount to mature drivers in many states. To qualify, you need to meet the age criteria for your state and take a non-court ordered, state-approved defensive driver safety course.
Your gender also plays a role in predicting how you’ll perform behind a wheel and thus how high (or low) your auto insurance premium should be. Males between the ages of 16-25 pay more for auto insurance than females of the same age. Statistically it has been shown that males drive faster than females, and that young males generally take more risks behind the wheel.
However, male drivers can look forward to lower auto insurance rates than their female counterparts as they mature. As their driving experience grows, males will find that they pay less for auto insurance— especially with a good driving record and few to no auto insurance claims.”

Factor #5: Insurance History (Unacceptable!)

There have been times where my vehicle has been broken down for months at a time. Why should I pay out for insurance when I’m not even driving it!? Sure the insurance might cover damage on my property, but thats only if I shell out a whole lot more money for comprehensive coverage. I have been told more than once by a few insurance companies that if I turn off my coverage, even for one month, that it can make my rates go up considerably. A gap in coverage. One summer I rode my motorcycle, which is insured year round. I was driving someone elses car at that time and therefore didn’t require “car insurance”. The insurance companies don’t care that you had coverage on a motorcycle, it just doesn’t count. The only solution to this seems to be to put coverage on a car year round, even if that car is nothing more than a paperwieght. That is, if you want to keep your low rates.

 

Factor #6: Credit Score (Unacceptable!!!)

If you have a low credit score, they charge you more. So, if you’ve had money problems in the past or if you are a younger driver without much credit history, they will make it hard for you to get car insurance. Think about the many people out there driving without any car insurance, simply because they need to get around, get to work, or get to school. It’s bad enough when you’re trying to hold down a crappy job, but when the insurance companies want even more of your hard earned money just because you wrote a bad check or two? What does that have to do with driving!? I understand charging more for a payment plan, or wanting to be paid upfront, but if the pay in full price is just as high? What makes this fair?

Conclusion:

We’re going to continue to get ripped off by insurance companies and here in Michigan we have it the worst, or close to it. Unless someone decides to say something about how unfair this all is and helps make a change to prevent the insurance companies from billion dollar profits, while we all try and drive safe while paying so much money for nothing. Oh yeah, and have you tried to get money back from the insurance companies in a claim? Good luck getting it back!

 

Photo Credit:
A. Steinmetz
CC BY-SA 2.0

 

When is the last time someone said that to you? The truth is that everything is just a massive waste of time. That’s what life is after all. Some of us spend hour upon hour binge watching through countless seasons of our favorite television shows on Netflix. Others may spend it outdoors playing some sort of sport, or perhaps only watching said sports on television. What about people who do seemingly nothing but play video games, or build robots, or what ever other time wasting hobby you have. Then you have all the people… Well you get the idea. The simple fact is that all of these things are simply a matter of wasting time. The only thing we need to be worried about is how meaningful it is to us as individuals to waste our time in ways that keep us happy to be alive. What’s bad is when you’re told you’re wasting your all your precious time, and you stop doing what makes you happy. In my opinion that’s when you’ll start losing time.

 

 

Photo credit:

Salzburg Siegl Uhr P1250877 by JuergenG
Licensed under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0 Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

 

So since the late 90’s we have made so many shortcuts to language. Now anyone who has had the experience of texting with a 10 digit numeric pad knows that the original reason for this was for texting purposes. Then people started using it for Instant Messaging, even when they had a full keyboard. Now over the last 10 years or so we’ve come up with a whole slew of shortened words and acronyms for what we want to say. We’ve become lazy in some ways, and while LOL is great for sending a laugh, newer words such as “bae” just needs to stop. In case you are not aware of this one:

From the Urban Dictionary:

1.) Word used by ghetto people to address their significant other because they have found themselves too lazy to pronounce the entire word “babe”.
“Welcome home, bae”
“My bae Jamal done spent all his mommas money on these nails gurl”

2.) “Before Anyone Else” Or another way to say babe or baby.
1. She’s my bae, I don’t know what I would do without her.

I don’t understand why people can’t just type out a response properly. Especially when someone has only shortened the length of the sentence by one or two characters. Then you’ve got the people that actually talk this way. People who actually spell out “WTF” or even “SMH” while speaking. I’m not even going to start with that garbage.

 

Sources:
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Bae

 

So sweeping our state and country lately is the idea that gay individuals may end up being treated unfairly when it comes to common medical practice. In my state of Michigan this could end up a possibility. The law could affect more then same sex couples however, and could just as easily prompt new racism or lifestyle conflicts.

“The Republican-led House has approved the Michigan Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which essentially states that people do not have to perform an act that would violate their sincerely held religious beliefs.” – CBS News

Emergency Medical Technicians for example, if they do not agree with a persons sexual orientation or race, may celebrate his or her religious freedoms by simply choosing not to help someone that is gay, black, or even Jewish. I highly doubt this will tolerated. It’s like telling someone you won’t save their life simply because they’re black. Most people would consider that racism, and it wouldn’t be so easily tolerated. It may also allow people to practice racism as well. This new law is just another way to allow people to freely discriminate based on an individual’s religious beliefs. Under some circumstances, these may end be life or death situations that these people are in. The law should be modified to protect people from this possibility.

“For example, a Christian doctor who does not believe in a gay lifestyle would not have to treat a gay patient,” CBS Detroit legal analyst Charlie Langton said. “Or perhaps, a Jewish butcher would not have to handle non-Kosher meat.” – CBS News

It would also appear there is a nationwide law that states that any man who has had sexual contact with another man can not donate blood for the rest of his life. If the contact happened twenty five years ago, donations wouldn’t be allowed. The people representing this law figure that only gay men will spread disease and cannot be trusted. Meanwhile, there is nothing stopping straight men and woman, that have opposite sex partners from having contact with hundreds of other people. Those straight individuals may still donate. It’s just as easy for any human on the planet having unprotected sexual encounters with another human to transmit a disease. Why is it assumed only same sex partners can spread STDs and AIDs? Check my sources for more on this because Mark Stern wrote a good article over at Slate.

 

Sources:
CBS News – http://goo.gl/G0H93w
Slate.com – http://goo.gl/rt8CmJ