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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Bullshit Detector

Oh, what I would give for a portable bullshit detector. No mere lie detector, this goes off when people are cheerfully and genuinely confident in their irrational beliefs. As an inquisitive INTP, I inadvertently provoke this behavior in people constantly, and my life would be much improved if I weren't the only one shocked by it. Bzzt! Just a mild, unpleasant shock every time someone evaded reason. Think of how it would change the world. Of course, this would make me just that much more of a social anathema.

I really could have used one of those today. I was on the phone with a lawyer who's attempting to pull a rug out from under me through a route that has no legal justification that I am aware of, and when I pointed this out and asked why she thought they could do this she replied, in arrogant, absolute seriousness, "We're lawyers, we can do anything." Bzzzt! I later verified that they will get nowhere on the path they're on, but being sharks they will continue to circle, so if anyone knows any lawyers familiar with subrogation issues, please let me know.

In related news, here is why you must have health insurance in the U.S.: Blue Shield has "negotiated" my medical bills from $67,000 down to $16,000. Yes, that's right: being insured, I paid $3,500 and my insurance paid $12,500, but if I had not been insured, I would be liable for the full $67,000 with all the power of the law on the side of the billing hospitals and doctors. Another friend who is a lawyer actually looked into filing a class action suit around this general issue a while back, but after much research determined there was little chance of winning. And no, you have no power to negotiate as an individual. You are, quite simply, fucked.

Speaking of which, I have some more thoughts about patents, but I'll make that an entry of its own...

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Simon Funk / simonfunk@gmail.com