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Comment Archives: Stories: Opinion: Editorial

Re: “A Call to Arms on Health Care

Chuck,
I hope you weren't writing this during today's sermon.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by CL Mullins on 07/16/2017 at 4:24 PM

Re: “A Call to Arms on Health Care

Places that can replace Planned Parenthood without Robbing Tax Payers to Murder Babies
Two leading pro-life organizations released a map today intended to showcase the thousands of community health care clinics that could step in for Planned Parenthood if it were to lose federal funding.
The map adds to a heated conversation about whether stripping Planned Parenthood of its $500 million annual taxpayer dollars would hurt womens health care in America, or if women would be better off without it.
Alliance Defending Freedom and Charlotte Lozier Institute, the education arm of the Susan B. Anthony List, identified the different Planned Parenthood locations and community health care clinics across America.
The two groups argue there are plenty of health centers that also can receive federal funding to absorb Planned Parenthoods patients should the organization be defunded by Congress.
According to data collected by the two groups, there are currently 13,540 clinics providing comprehensive health care for women, versus 665 Planned Parenthood locations.
Community health centers primarily exist to provide comprehensive care to millions of uninsured, working poor and jobless Americans.
If Planned Parenthoods federal funding went away tomorrow, Mattox argues, the money would be better used by community health centers and other places around the country that can provide a fuller range of services to women without the ethical challenges that Planned Parenthood presents.
The effort to defund Planned Parenthood comes after the Center for Medical Progress, a group that opposes abortion, released a series of damaging videos.
The videos show high-ranking Planned Parenthood employees discussing the sale of tissue from aborted babies and changing abortion procedures to harvest these organs.
The issues raise a host of legal questions and have sparked both state and federal investigations.
Some healthcare experts warn that lawmakers should be careful in punishing Planned Parenthood. These supporters argue community health clinics cant fulfill the services that Planned Parenthood provides.
The notion that you could literally overnight defund providers serving a couple million people and think that health centerseven if theyre right nearby, which is not always the casecould just magically absorb patients, I think shows an astounding naivet in healthcare, says Sara Rosenbaum, a professor of health law and policy at George Washington University.
You can map all you want and the fact of the matter is health centers are not magicians and health care doesnt work this way.
Rosenbaum, in an interview with The Daily Signal, argued that banning Planned Parenthood funding would create an immediate health care access crisis for millions of women.
Texas, she says, is the smoking gun in the debate.
In 2012, Texas stopped funding abortion-providers like Planned Parenthood. Instead, in 2013 it created the Womens Health Program, which provides low-income women with family planning services, health screenings and birth control.
According to a study by George Washington University, this resulted in community clinics increasing their womens health care services by an average of 81 percent.
Between 2011 and 2013, after Planned Parenthood was excluded, the study found that the program experienced a nine percent decrease in enrollees, a 26 percent decrease in Medicaid claims and a 54 percent decline in contraceptive claims.
Eventually, community health care clinics replaced Planned Parenthoods services, Rosenbaum said, but not without consequences.
Yes, health centers eventually ramped up. Yes, they offer more family planning services than they did before because they had to respond to a crisis and health centers are remarkable at responding to crises. But the states own data show that the actual number of patients served dropped. She added:
Were talking family planning, cancer screenings, things like that. You certainly do not want people who are seeking family planning to have to put it off at all. Otherwise, you wind up with unplanned pregnancies, half of which will turn into an abortion. This is exactly what we dont want so why would you shut down a point of access for contraceptives? And why would you shut down cancer screen sites? It makes no sense.
Mattox, with Alliance Defending Freedom, argues the Texas example paints an entirely different pictureone that actually appears to be a success story.
According to state data, in 2012, the pregnancy rate in Texas remained relatively the same, falling from 82.2 pregnancies per 1,000 women ages 15-44, to 81.1 in 2013.
Abortions dropped during the same period, from 65,547 in 2012 compared to 61,513 in 2013.
The data belies the claim that Planned Parenthood was necessary to womens health care in Texas, Mattox said.
In 2013, right after Texas ousted the organization, Planned Parenthood clinics in the state agreed to pay $4.3 million to settle a federal civil suit brought by the Justice Department under President Obama.
The suit claimed the organization fraudulently billed Medicaid for womens health care services such as birth control from 2003 to 2009.
The massive drop in Medicaid and contraceptive claims, Mattox said, may be evidence that Texas cleaned up a lot of false claims.
In addition, Mattox argued the drop in program enrollees could be attributed to a bump in the economywith more people enrolling on employer-provided health care plansand the creation of the Affordable Care Act, which compelled free coverage of contraceptives.
It seems some of our friends on the left conveniently forget that they created Obamacare and compelled free coverage of contraceptives when that is inconvenient to defending the need for Planned Parenthood, he said.
Taking in these broader factors, Mattox argued the Texas example might actually be good news and further proof that taking away Planned Parenthood wont hurt women.
It seems like there may be other factors that explain what happened to women during this time period in Texas. That might actually be good newswe may have solved problems rather than found new ones.
If Congress defunds Planned Parenthood, the country will have to wait and see if the Texas model will be tested on the national level.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Charles Gillihan on 07/16/2017 at 2:15 PM

Re: “Time for Town Halls on Health Care

I, (Jim Wade of Memphis) attended the town hall and found it to be very informative. Thank you IBEW for providing the space. The meeting opened with the Pledge of Allegiance. Memphis Center for Independence, Mid South Adapt, The Sierra Club, Planned Parenthood, Tennessee Justice, Indivisible Memphis, Copper Coalition, and others were represented. Unfortunately, none of our current elected Federal or State representatives attended or even sent anyone to represent them. Alexander and Corker were represented by Cardboard Cutouts. The best presentation, in my opinion was given, by Aften Ben (not sure if I spelled her name correctly) with the Tennessee Justice Center, regarding the Republican Health Care(less) plan, (BCRA).

Aften Presented a detailed slide show with Quotes from Republican Senators, showing how their quotes are false and the BCRA is a Tax Cut for the Richest one 1% at the expense Tens of Millions of Americans.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Jim Wade on 07/08/2017 at 10:39 PM

Re: “Policy Needs to be Set for Memphis Sand Aquifer

Memphis has access to some of the best water on the planet and they want to add poison to it before they send it to the resident's homes. Hydrofluorosilicic acid, extracted from the exhaust stacks of phosphate fertilizer plants, is extremely toxic but is added to Memphis water without regard for its safety. Memphis should be trying to keep its amazing water as PURE as possible instead of ruining it by adding unnecessary and poisonous additives.

Posted by jmiles on 06/26/2017 at 5:17 PM

Re: “Heavy Weather: The Politics of Climate Change

The fellow whose car this is could really use some help. Insurance not covering it. https://www.gofundme.com/wills-wheels-were….

Posted by Glen Harmon on 06/09/2017 at 9:44 AM

Re: “Reaping the Whirlwind

I agree that fellow GOP should stop being puppets. But it is still disturbing that there were enough misguided, shortsighted and naive citizens that were just looking for a warm body to put in office. The 'policy' rantings on the trail clearly outlined an alienating future for the USA. All we can do now is build a wall in mid-term to stall this wreck until 2020. 1248 days...

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Adam Q Davis on 06/03/2017 at 8:14 AM

Re: “Reaping the Whirlwind

We hear this over and over, "elections have consequences," but I guess that they are empty words until you elect someone like Trump. He is as a former football coach stated in an interview about another, "they are who we thought they were,' or something on that note. President Trump is who he says he was. He is simultaneously refreshing and dehydrating. I feel as lonely as I felt election night, if not worse, but I have moved on.

What I think that many do not get is that fact that many of these Republicans know that this could be the end of the world as they know it. First of all, they will be dead and gone if that is the case. Second, some of these people think that it is God's will anyway.

The truth is that Democrats and liberals don't want to take responsibility that even with an absolute ogre running for the most powerful position in the world, their machine was not able to defeat him. He pretty much insults everyone except white folks angry at "the others," and unhappy with their present life circumstances.

Frost spoke about the world ending in fire or ice. The question now is whether it will end because of color or cold.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by 1Memphomaniac on 06/02/2017 at 1:37 PM

Re: “Arkansas Goes to Pot

I see that Arkansas will accept medical marijuana cards from other states. So I am envisioning road blocks at the various Mississippi River Bridges

5 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by CL Mullins on 05/27/2017 at 2:51 PM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

Oak-
Hate to break it to you, but everything I've said about the desirability of certain metropolitan areas over others does not need work as it is pretty much accepted fact in the economic sector of demand driven development and investment in cities. I paraphrased and summarized a lot of standard information. Nowhere have I said I do not like Memphis. If someone really does like this city/metro and wants the best for this community, they should be open and frank about the issues the metropolitan area faces. Our increasingly diminished ability to remain competitive with other cities in the region and the nation is a critical component in that analysis. You must recognize and fully define the problem(s) in order to address their roots.

I am clearly stating that more find the area to be undesirable than find it to be a highly appealing place to reside as indicated by the fact that far more are migrating to other metropolitan areas than are moving to the Memphis Metro, a fact you repeated. Then you go on to confuse the issue by describing population loss within the central city vs. the metropolitan area as a whole. You realize those are distinct units, correct? While the cities of Chicago and St. Louis have witnessed their populations decrease, their metropolitan areas continue to grow indicating that those metropolitan areas are desirable places to live and work. I don't like to include the New Orleans metro because of the impact Katrina had on the population. However, fairly recent analysis indicates that after the post Katrina boom, the metropolitan areas growth rate has returned to its pre-Katrina trend of around .8% annually. Anemic by most standards but still a rate that is in several times the population growth rate found locally.

You are right, the fact that individuals moving here are a minority when compared to those leaving does indicate that they may not share the same standards, thus most people do not share your standards. Do you really need someone to define the word most for you? Incredible. And there are those who wonder why companies shirk this region based on concerns related to quality of education and workforce training. Of course, you are assuming that even the lesser number choosing to locate here stay. I have plenty of proof that of this group, a significant percentage are just as likely to relocate after a few years. Then again the real point has always been about why the Memphis metro is stagnant/shrinking while other nearby metropolitan areas witness rapid population growth and serve as home to vibrant economies. If you think a vibrant economy is some random variable the result of the roll of a dice- I would suggest you really need to read more about how and why cities thrive or diminish.

As for the whole "if you don't like it here, get out" mentality you bring to the conversation, well let's just say that same attitude may be helping to drive away more people than it attracts to this area. Unfortunately, more people are following your advice every day in the Memphis metropolitan area, which is why the census shows this area is stagnating.

Posted by barf on 05/24/2017 at 2:32 PM

Re: “Remembering Irvin Salky: One of a Kind

What a Gent ! Irvin was a large piece of Memphis Rest in Peace Mr. Salky

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by James Rhule on 05/22/2017 at 1:19 AM

Re: “Remembering Irvin Salky: One of a Kind

He was the best of Memphis!!! A complete gentleman and encourager!!!! I treasure his memory.

6 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Deborah Thomas on 05/18/2017 at 9:21 AM

Re: “Disunity

"This is not about money! This is about power!" she said as she grabbed your wallet and ran.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Bric-a-Brac on 04/27/2017 at 2:31 AM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

Not a cargo jet. A Whale oil lamp.

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Bric-a-Brac on 04/27/2017 at 2:24 AM

Re: “Disunity

Whenever there is the chance for a county commission or a city council to increase their power and available patronage funds by fiat, you know they're gonna bite that bait. It's as predictable as mosquitos going after your blood every summer. Thing is, the only thing to swat 'em on the nose with is legal proceedings. And that takes considerable time and money. So what happens next is liable to be a court crawl, with an uncertain and hazy outcome.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by OakTree on 04/26/2017 at 8:00 AM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

And while I'm at it, the shape of Memphis, would be a 747 cargo jet...

2 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by OakTree on 04/21/2017 at 12:14 AM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

If you don't like it, I think you need to leave, barf. I mean, there's gotta be something else for you to do in a place you want to be. If you don't like it here, move. A lot of us moved here, after living in other places, specifically because WE DO like it here.

"..most other people do not share your standards..."

Yeah, I think you are a little over the top there.

If you look at all the major cities in the Mississippi Basin, Chicago, St. Louis, Memphis, New Orleans, they all have experienced significant population loss from 1960 to 2010. This isn't peculiar to Memphis. It's related to structural changes in industrial production and agribusiness predominantly, which has led to changing employment patterns, and thus changing demographics of residence.

The city which has been hit hardest by this demographic shift is actually Chicago. So your premise about population loss, where people want to live, and why they move where they do, prolly needs a little work. People move to New Orleans, Memphis and Chicago all the time, even though their demographics show a general population shift out of their metropolitan catchment. They do it for all kinds of reasons. Cultural ones are a big thing, actually.

So I guess those people who move in, to quote you, 'do not share your standards'.

Chill, barf. It's ok to love Memphis, even when it has issues. Relax.

2 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by OakTree on 04/20/2017 at 9:21 PM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

Bric- I'm sorry, but you are hopeless. 1980? Really? No one cares about 1980 to 2010. If you applied the same span of years to the areas I noted, it would cast a shadow over you "dynamic" growth of our local suburbs. Perhaps you realized that and we're attempting to cover for the fact that Germantown has grown by around 1900 people in the last 15+ years despite an abundance of undeveloped acreage (north of 3000 acres by one recent estimate) within the municipal boundaries. Collierville also reflects a dramatic decrease in it's rate of growth between 2000 and 2015. A rate which continues to fall despite the enormous areas available for development within it's existing boundaries and it's annexation reserve area. Let's play by your standard that real population growth is the major indicator of a dynamic, high quality of life place. Apparently more people than not have a different view than yours concerning quality of life here. It's weird, because if suburban Memphis and the metro as a whole was indeed on par with the places mentioned, employers and the general population sure seem bent on depriving themselves of the good life by choosing overwhelmingly to locate almost anywhere else but here- unless it's low pay, low skill distribution activity. From 2011- 2013 a net migration of -16,000 people (more people moving out than in) chose to leave Shelby County. In 2013 alone 560 more people left Shelby for other counties in the Memphis metro than chose to move into Shelby. In that same year, 763 more people left for Nashville and it's suburban counties than moved to Shelby Co. Over a thousand more left for the Dallas/ Ft Worth metro than arrived and the deficit increased to over 1500 for Austin's Travis Co alone. The numbers are even in the red for places like Pulaski County (Little Rock) and Knox Co. Maybe it's an income thing, right. Maybe these people just can afford to live in o e of the most affordable metro areas in the country. Shoot, that's not it because in 2013 alone, the average income for those movies g here was over $4,800 less compared to those hightailing it out of here.

All of Shelby County beyond the Memphis city limits grew by a paltry 35,000 over the last 17 years. Meanwhile, Plano alone grew by twice that amount during the same period. However, I should have realized that you cannot comprehend that growing from squat to squat and a half is a peas to pumpkins comparison when you mentioned Dallas grew by 200,000 people. By the way, if I had wanted to add Dallas I would have, but seeing as the conversation was comparing suburbs to suburbs in my last post, I did not. Your pesky critical reading deficiency strikes again.

Not sure why you decided to randomly insert density information as population density except that you seem to equate density with quality of life. Odd you would mention that for no apparent reason. Then again, who cares what someone like you thinks about Southlake's density? Specifically when it's median household income is almost twice that of Collierville- an amount that far surpasses the differences in cost of living.

Highland Park is completely built out and it has an aversion to high density and rental housing, thus the flatline. However it does boast an exceptional quality of life which has resulted in exceptionally high home values. These values in turn have eroded the rental housing market and resulted in the demolition of multifamily uses in favor of single family infill in a process that began in the mid 1950s. An oversimplified summary is that as property values have risen, all but the wealthiest students at neighboring SMU have been forced out of homes that have then been converted back to single family occupancy over the years. To bad you have no knowledge of these or the other areas mentioned. Maybe that's why you cannot understand that Memphis and it's suburbs are very "meh" by comparison.

No need to refer specifically to North Mississippi as it does not change any of the results in a significant way. The reference to the suburbs mentioned was directly tied to quality of life in those locales. Face it, just like AP, the quality of life in suburban Memphis (and the Memphis metro as a whole) may suite you just fine. It just turns out that most most other people do not share your standards. It's pretty obvious when most people are choosing to live anywhere and seemingly everywhere else.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by barf on 04/20/2017 at 7:24 PM

Re: “Disunity

The dispute on county surplus funds is quite a bit more complicated than some county commissioners would have you believe. The 2015 disagreement on the amount of county surplus funds centered substantially on the results of a practice the then county administration and a group of commissioners developed in 2007 to cap the amount of property tax revenue that schools received each year at the figure approved in the county budget for schools. Commissioners at that time added a sentence to the county tax rate ordinance that calls for any excess revenue (surplus) collected from property taxes for schools to be held back and applied to school funding in the following year. This may sound all good and proper but what it did in many years was to create a major surplus in the year the taxes were collected and apply the funds to the next year's budget. This amount, which was $10.8 million in the 2015 fiscal year, was subtracted from wheel tax revenue that had been originally designated for schools. Officials said the $10.8 million was then used to pay debt service on school bonds. Funding of school bonds is an obligation of the general county government and cannot come from county property taxes designated for schools. It is all very complicated and hard to follow and the holding back of county property tax funds by the county trustee appears to ripe for a legal challenge by school officials. Some school officials know about the practice but so far there has apparently been no move to take the issue to court. This $10.8 million in "excess school property tax revenue" appears to be a major factor in the difference in surplus figures presented by county officials in 2015. In the 2016 fiscal year, that ended last June 30, the "excess" totaled only $318,567 and that is the amount of funds what were shifted. It will be interesting to see if school supporters on the county commission allow the sentence on "excess" collections to remain in the tax rate ordinance. There may be legal question about whether the commission has the authority to place the sentence in the tax rate ordinance. And does the wording bind the county trustee, an independently elected official, to holding back the funds? jcov40

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by jcov40 on 04/20/2017 at 4:21 PM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

No. It isn't obvious. The reason it isn't is because you made a point of singling out individual areas, two of which are cities in their own right, and the entirety of north Mississippi (which you've ceased talking about).

I must assume that you have some reason for that.

The two cities have both grown a bunch over the years.

Collierville has grown from a population of 7,839 in 1980 to 43,965 in 2010
Germantown has grown from 21,467 in 1980 to 38,844 in 2010.
Memphis, even with major annexations went from 646,174 to 646,889 in the same period.

This is dynamic and amazing growth for Collierville and Germantown, but a horrifying stagnation for Memphis, especially given all the annexations in the period in question.

I also noticed that you want to add Dallas to your list to which we are to be compared. Fair enough.

Dallas, the metro area of which contains the third largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the nation (Led by Houston and NYC) and the area's economy is the tenth largest in the world. Dallas proper grew from 904,078 in 1980 to ,1,197,816 in 2010. Very respectable but doesn't even come close to the amazing growth of either Germantown or Collierville in the same time frame yet puts Memphis to shame. You've mentioned South Lake, which is in the Dallas Metro. It has had amazing growth in this period also, going from 2,808 to 26,575 in the given period. However, Collierville, Germantown and Memphis have at least twice he population density, with Germantown coming out on top with 2,200 persons per square mile. You've also mentioned Plano which has had very respectable growth and has a population density of over 3,800 persons per square mile. Personally that sounds horrible to me. Another place you mentioned is Highland Park, but you don't tell us which one, so I'll go with the one in the Dallas metro. It has actually lost population in e given period, so I have no idea why you'd do that. It doesn't match the cherry picking trash talk of the rest of the garbage you are passing.

Both Franklin and Brentwood have had very respectable growth, but they hardly create some kind of shameful contrast the way Memphis proper does.

Decatur (I have to assume you mean the one in Georgia) has a population density over 4,000 persons per square mile but has very little growth in the period in question.

Clayton? Which one?
Carmel? Which one?
Mountain Brook? Alabama? Really?

2 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Bric-a-Brac on 04/20/2017 at 2:37 PM

Re: “Memphis Census News is Troubling

Bric- obviously I was stating that the metro as a whole, including the suburbs, are not competitive when compared to vibrant metros. Germantown and Collierville come in second (sometimes a distant second) compared to Brentwood, Franklin, Highland Park, Southlake, Plano, Mountain Brook, Decatur, Clayton, Carmel, etc. Sure, G'town, C'ville and Arlington are wonderful if the competition is limited to just the Memphis metro, but as Grove can attest, we are (or should be) competing with other metropolitan areas for employers and quality employees. Grove also accurately noted that a great central city is not a requirement to attract those 2 targets, but it definitely helps. However great suburbs are a must in order to attract and retain those who prefer a less urban lifestyle. While the quality of life in Memphis proper may be neutral at best, the Memphis suburbs- when compared to other suburban areas in the southeast and midwest- are quite mediocre.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by barf on 04/20/2017 at 12:17 PM

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