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Category Archives: Healthcare

Micro-Management Rarely Works

I remember working out at Woodfibre (Squamish) and driving back and forth between the ferry parking lot (there was a walk-on ferry to take us across the water to Woodfibre and back) and my house in Delta, everyday.  An hour and a half at least, each way.  Those were 10 hour shifts, 7 days a week, until the job was done.  The jobs usually lasted about 2 to 3 weeks.
One job I am thinking about right now.  Well, not so much the job it was my home and family that I remember.  Every night, walking through the front door, the house was a worse mess.  And then, they were looking at me to make dinner.  I walked in one night towards the end of the job, and said, “if this place looks like this tomorrow I am just going to set up caution tape.”  I was too tired to feel anything but disappointment.  I took my shower and went to bed.
They figured it out.  The next day I opened the front door into a clean, sparkly living room!  And, if I remember right, dinner was ready.

Responses to an Angry Person

On CBC Radio yesterday morning someone was commenting on how difficult it is to deal with angry people because angry people lose everything – their families, their homes, their friends, their possessions – because they are angry.

I find it difficult to listen to nonsense like this on CBC.  And, it is nonsense.  I have no idea who it was that was making these claims or why.  I walked in while this person was talking, listed for a couple of minutes and then turned the radio off.  She made me angry and I have a choice, I do not have to listen to her!

That person on the radio laid out the ground work to blame the person who was angry, for being angry.  Leaving out any possible justification for anger.  Like any other emotion, there is root cause.  People are not born angry.  They become angry.  Sometimes for very valid reasons and those are often reasons of their own making but sometimes, it could be that they are more aware than others of what is happening in the world around them.

Like the bumper stick says, “If you aren’t angry, you aren’t paying attention”.


“They told me I could work today…

They promised.”

Arms flailing and storm clouds billowing around him – he launched himself out of the Sky Train lobby and across Hastings Street.  The pigeons, crows and seagulls scattered.  One taxi swerved.  Another honked but not loud enough to drone out the angry words.

“Fuck You!”

“Get Fucked”

“You Fucking…”

His words were heard by all and directed at no one.

We have all heard him.  This was an angry man.  The man was dressed as a labourer and his clothes hung off of his lean frame like rags on a scarecrow.  He lurched through the traffic, boot tops flapping as angrily as he was.

On the other side of the street, a police car pulled over.  Two uniformed officers emerged and watched.

The people at my bus stop gave him room and he came to a violent, seated stop about two feet from where I was standing.  I gave him room.  He had already seen the flashing lights and his hands went to his face as his large frame slumped into the tiny space.

Under a welders cap, fair lank hair framed his face.  The bill of the cap had buried itself under his jacket.  The work boots were not tied.  The clothes looked like they used to fit someone much larger but, they were the right length and he was very tall.

The two cops were now one on each side of him, placing themselves between his anger and the mixed emotions those of us still waiting near this bus stop were feeling.  “What is your issue?” barked the younger of the two.  The older cop dropped his stance very slightly and looked up in a way that suggested he was not only prepared for the worst but was disappointed at his partner’s tone.

“What is the issue?”

“What is the issue?”

My heart began to soften and went out to the angry man.  My eyes went to the cop and I thought, “What is your issue?”  Why did this young officer need to keep repeating a question that was not getting a response.

The older cop looked down at his younger partner and motioned him back.  With careful thought and much compassion he softly asked, “What’s wrong?  What happened?”

“They told me I could work today.”

The hands came down from his face.  He looked smaller.  Beaten.  “They told me to be there with my boots on.  They told me I could work today.”

There were tears on his cheek.

“You okay now?”

“You don’t need a ride, do you?”

The man swallowed, “No sir.  Thank you sir.”

He wiped his cheek with the back of his hand, “I’m okay.”

My heart wrenched.  The cops backed off.  Walked to the car and waited a bit.  They drove away.  The tall man wasn’t so much angry as heart broken.  We are not all capable of working.  Most of us want to.  Being useful and self-sufficient are just very human things to be or, to want to be.  Most of us want to work.

Copyright, April 28, 2020

It is Time to Put an End to the Daily Spectical of Political Theatre in Canada

“We have chosen to help the most vulnerable….”

This scripted line has been repeated by The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, almost every morning for how many weeks now?  I have lost count.

The most vulnerable, the most frail of the elderly, are now dying in their beds.  Not of age, not of COVID-19, of starvation.


“No Canadian should need to go without food…”

By refusing to hear the pleas of business and press agents, Trudeau is ignoring another vulnerable sector of society.  Businesses.

By handing out money, freely, to workers.  By ignoring the needs of the employers (not the businesses, those are pieces of paper – the employers, the people who run the businesses) you are failing those vulnerable people whose payrolls keep this country running.  It is people who keep the payrolls happening; bi-weekly payroll after bi-weekly payroll.

By supporting only the workers you are almost guaranteeing that there will be little work to go back to.

By not supporting farming in a way that gets qualified people out working on farms, you, Trudeau, are leading us into what could be – famine.


“The most important people in this country, right now, are the frontline workers!”

Doctors, nurses, paramedics, ambulance attendants, care aids and janitorial staff are important.  Are they more important than the chemists who put the drugs into their hands to administer to the sick?  Are they more important than the carpenters, brick layers, boilermakers, iron workers, fabricators, boat builders, payroll clerks, realtors, etc.?  Are front line workers more important than the kid at the drive thru window handing out a cup of coffee to a front line worker who just finished a shift?

The frontline workers are very important and need our support.  So is the chain of supply.  That has been broken.  The support that was there to keep hospitals, pharmacies and doctors offices running efficiently has been broken – by those who have taken command.


“There is a $40,000 loan available to small businesses…”

But, only if there is a payroll.  There is always a way out for the government.  This is an empty promise.  Think about this one.  Where does money come from?  My second year economics professor has been telling every student that passes through his classes the answer to this one.  Simplified – money comes from debt.  More debt, more money…

The money isn’t going out to small businesses until they have built enough debt to sustain a handout.  This is a slippery slope that leads, most often, to mass inflation.

Why the need for a payroll?  I know so many people who have a business that has no employees and no payroll.  They earn enough to support themselves and then, at the end of the year, they pay their taxes.  There is no payroll.  There is no need for a payroll.


Businesses are failing.  Not just small ones.  The Canada Pension Fund is about to be in serious trouble.  Canada is in trouble.

Canadians need leadership.

Canadians do not need any more of the political theatre that is currently being pumped out in the garden of a 22 room cottage.



Do Animals ‘Drink’ Intentionally?

A link to the following article was in my mail yesterday.  The article is interesting however, I don’t think it really gets at what might be underlying causes of birds imbibing a little too much or a little too frequently….

James MacDonald.  2014.  When Birds Drink Too MuchJSTOR Daily, January 1,4 2015.


There are two articles cited by the above mini-article.  I think that they are important and can be read online without any extra cost.

Frank Wiens, Annette Zitzmann, Marc-Andre Lachance, Michel Yegles, Fritz Pragst, Friedrich M. Wurst, Dietrich von Holst, Saw Leng Guan, and Rainer Spanagel.  2008.  Chronic intake of fermented floral nectar by wild treeshrews.  PNAS, Volume 105, No. 30, pages 10426-10431.

S.D. Fitzgerald, J.M. Sullivan and R.J. Everson.  1990.  Suspected Ethanol Toxicosis in Two Wild Cedar Waxwings.  Avian Diseases, Volume 34, No. 2, (Apr. – Jun., 1990), pages 488-490.



Treeshrews?  Waxwings?

Eberhard Fuchs and Silke Cobach-Sohle.  2010.  Tree shrews in The UFAW handbook on the care and management of laboratory and other research animals, 8th ed. Oxford, UK:  Wiley-Blackwell, pages 262-275.

Loren S. Putnam.  1949.  The Life History of the Cedar WaxwingThe Wilson Bulletin, pages 141-182.



My thoughts on this are going towards the caloric intake in fruits and berries that are fermented or are in the process of fermenting.  It seems to me that it might be higher than when the fruits and berries have just freshly ripened.

Eva M. Sehub,Alan C. Logan, and Alison C. Bested.  2014.  Fermented foods, microbiota, and mental health:  ancient practice meets nutritional psychiatryJournal of Physiological Anthropology.  Article 332.



Is it just the birds or do other creatures like a little drink now and then too?

Cheryl D. Knott.  1998.  Changes in Orangutan Caloric Intake, Energy Balance, and Ketones in Response to Fluctuating Fruit AvailabilityInternational Journal of Primatology.  Volume 19, No. 6, pages 1061



Reading a bit further and another thought occurred to me!  Higher caloric intake for wildlife, just before winter sets in, would be useful for survival.  Putting on a little weight to get through the cold dark nights.  Can the fermentation of fruits provide other contributions to survival?

James O. Vafidis, Ian P. Vaughan, T. Hefin Jones, Richard J. Facey, Rob Parry, Robert J. Thomas.  2014.  Habitat Use and Body Mass Regulation among Warblers in the Sahel Region during the Non-Breeding SeasonPLOS One.  doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0113665

Mark C. Witmer.  1996.  Annual Diet of Cedar Waxwings Based on U.S. Biological Survey Records (1885-1950) Compared to Diet of American Robins:  Contrasts in Dietary Patterns and Natural HistoryThe Auk.  Volume 113, No. 2, Pages 414-430.



So, if the intoxicating fruits and berries are a good thing, why are some birds overdoing it?  Now?  Could it be that there is less competition for these yummy morsels?  Fewer birds equals more party favours?

Jennifer A. Howard.  2014.  The Lesser Coverts of Game BirdsBooth, Volume 6, No. 2, Page 1-2.

Probably not the best answer to my question but, a very good short story!  One that has me thinking a bit further off-track than usual.  I will come back to this story for another post.



And then, there are people….

Laren Cordain, S. Boyd Eaton, Anthony Sebastian, Neil Mann, Staffan Lindeberg, Bruce A Watkins, James H. O’Keefe, and Janette Brand-Miller.  2005.  Origins and evolution of the Western diet:  health implications for the 21st centuryThe American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.  Volume 81, pages 341-354.

Manas Ranjan Swain, Marimuthu Anandharaj, Ramesh Chandra Ray, and Rizwana parveen Rani.  2014.  Fermented Fruits and Vegetables of Asia:  A Potential Source of Probiotics.  Hindawi Publishing Corporation Biotechnology Research International.



And, because we can think of other things to do with ethanol products…

Veeranjaneya Reddy Lebaka, Hwa-Won Ryu, and Young-Jung Wee.  2014.  Effect of fruit pulp supplementation on rapid and enhanced ethanol production in very high gravity (VHG) fermentationSpringerLink.  doi:  10.1186/s40643-014-0022-8



And thinking along these lines… maybe we need to look at chronic diseases that may have some beginning in the foods that are available to us now as well as those that we choose to eat a lot of and, without competition, possibly eat a little too regularly – much like the small woodland creatures and birds in the first few articles.

Your thoughts are important to me and to continuing this as a discussion.  Please comment….






Mangrove Forests….

I just found a wonderful and interactive site!  Well, this isn’t just a site, this is a database and, it is worth a visit….



Now, I tried to put the following into my own words but, it is so perfectly written that I have copied and pasted it here for you:

A Case for Mangroves
The approximately 70 distinct species of mangroves in the world cover roughly 17,000,000 hectares globally (Valiela et al.  2001) – only 0.12 percent of the Earth’s surface (Sullivan 2005, Ellison 2008).  The greatest diversity is in Southeast Asia (36-46 species); the lowest diversity is in the United States and the Middle East (1-3 species) (Polidoro et al.  2010).  Mangroves are being cut down or otherwise destroyed at such a high rate that they may be functionally extinct by 2100 (Duke et al.  2007).  In just the last 50 years, 30-50 percent of the global acreage has been lost.  (Alongi 2002, Duke et al. 2007)  Mangroves are among the most valuable and most threatened ecosystems on Earth.  The ecosystems services they provide—e.g., buffering coastal communities against flooding and storms, fiber production, habitat for thousands of species of birds, mammals and marine species—are estimated to be worth US $1.6 billion dollars/year (Polidoro et al.  2010).  In addition, recent evidence suggests that mangroves sequester carbon more effectively than any other tropical forest (Donato et al.  2011).”

This is important!



There are 65 of the most influential papers on mangroves and mangrove forests listed on this site.  All are worth reading but, we don’t all have that much time….

If there is a paper that you feel is missing, please add it in the comments below.  I look forward to hearing from you.


Small Change… Re-inventing Small Business on a Global Scale

I have an Etsy shop!  It has become a goal to be able to work without schedule, to be able to study, create, get enough sleep, and pay my bills without have to time my morning coffee to the public transit schedule….

With this in mind, I began to go through some articles that I have here.  Some are printed out, some are online, some have a partially finished precis.  They are all interesting and in putting this post together I have read parts of all them although, not all of them have made it here.


Article:  Embroidery as Participation?  Women in the Calakmul Model Forest, Campeche, Mexico.  pdf

Author:  Julia E. Murphy.  Professor of Anthropology at Kwantlen Polytechnic University

Published in:  2003

Journal:  Canadian Woman Studies, les cahiers de la femme, Vol. 23, No. 1, pages 159-167.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Why this article interested me:  I love embroidery!  I learned to do embroidery from my grandmother.  When my daughter was small, my ability to knit helped to pay the bills.  Small ventures in a cooperative atmosphere can make life easier.



Article:  Village Development Groups:  Model Based on Participation in Achieving Rural Development.  pdf

Authors:  Mahmoud Falsolaiman, Hojat Sadeghi, and Mohammad Hajipur.

Published in:  2014

Journal:  Journal of Geography and Regional Planning, Vol. 7, No. 4, June 2014, pages 78-85.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Why this article interested me:  After finding the article by Julia Murphy, I went looking for more.  One of the keyword groups I used was “micro credit.”  Developing small businesses with very small amounts of venture capital has worked and is working.  I wanted to know more!



Article:  New Venture Teams:  A Review of the Literature and Roadmap for Future Research.  pdf

Authors:  Anthony C. Klotz, Keith M. Hmieleski, Bret H. Bradley, and Lowell W. Busenitz.

Publisher:  Journal of Management, Vol. 40, No. 1.

DOI:  10.1177/0149206313493325

Publication Date:  January 2014.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Find more of Anthony Klotz’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Keith Hmieleski’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Bret Bradley’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Lowell Busenitz’s writing here  –  Publications List

Why this article interested me:  So, starting a business…  Venture capital…  Taking a chance…  Is there still a climate in North America for the small partnership to succeed?  I found this article.  It has a lot about studies, research, benefits.  But, cooperation between individuals was my question.



Article:  Does Studying Economics Inhibit Cooperation?.  pdf

Authors:  Robert H. Frank, Thomas Gilovich and Dennis T. Regan.

Publisher:  American Economic Association, Vol. 7, No. 2, pages 159-171.

Publication Date:  Spring, 1993.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Click to access 00242.pdf

Find more of Robert Frank’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Thomas Gilovich’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Dennis Regan’s writing here  –  Publications List

Why this article?  Because the title caught my attention!  To find out more about the differences between economics majors and non-economics majors and how self-interest might play a role in business decisions, this is a lighter than average and, an interesting read!



Book:  A Handbook of Fist Puppets.  By Bessie Alexander Ficklen:  With eight reproductions from photographs and numerous line drawings by Julie Brown

Published in:  1935.

Publisher:  Frederick A. Stocks Company.  New York.

Library Holdings:  One copy (1963) is available in the reference section at the Toronto Public Library.  Link

There are also many copies of this book for sale, online…

Why this book?  The title of Chapter XIV is “Money-Making with Fist Puppets.”  This book was a $1 find at a library book sale many years ago.  I have enjoyed browsing the pages and it holds a special place on my bookshelf.  Even though I will probably never venture to sell handmade fist puppets or write or stage my own fist puppet play, the author of this book encourages this as a means of creativity and possible income.  There is also a short, annotated, bibliography!



Article:  Willow Smoke and Dogs’ Tails:  Hunter-Gatherer Settlement Systems and Archaeological Site Formation.  pdf

Author:  Lewis R. Binford

Publisher:  American Antiquity, Vol. 45, No. 1, pages 4-20.

Publication Date:  January 1980.

My copy was downloaded in 2014.  I found it here

Click to access Binford%2080%20American%20Antiquity%20Willow%20smoke.pdf

Find more of Lewis Binford’s writing here  –  Publications List

Why this paper?  Lewis Binford’s description of the Nunamiut, “logistically organized.”  Hunter-gatherer’s used their knowledge of the world around them to survive.  They had to know when to move, when to stay, who to trade with.  I love reading about ancient civilizations.  We have discovered a lot about many civilizations, peoples, cultures but, we can only guess at what they knew and how they knew it.

Biology is about survival and there are only two outcomes to business, success and failure.  Life is about much more.  It is about cooperation, successes and failures, personal growth and continuation despite the outcomes.  We need to read!



If any of these links do not work, please contact me and I will try to help you find the article or book that you are looking for.


If you find any broken links on this blog, please leave a comment or send me a note so that it can be repaired.  Thank  you….

Voices from the Past – Article Link to writings on Poverty, I wonder how much has changed in 15 years….

I am placing the link information for these articles here with the thought that easier access to free e-books such as this will encourage reading and open discussion.  This is also an open invitation for you to write a precis on this book (or, on any other article or book or section of such, that you find necessary or interesting)….


e-Book:  Voices of the Poor:  Can Anyone Hear Us?  Voices From 47 Countries.

Author:  Deepa Narayan with Raj Patel, Kai Schaffi, Anne Rademacher, and Sarah Koch-Schulte.  pdf

Published in:  1999

This is a published study that was funded by the Poverty Group, PREM, World Bank.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Click to access vol1.pdf

Find more of Deepa Narayan’s writing here  –  Publications Link

If the link does not work, please contact me and I will try to help you find a copy.



Here are a couple more articles that I have found to be of interest in a “connections” sort of way.  I hope that you might find them interesting too.


Article:  Causal Stories and the Formation of Policy Agendas.  pdf

Author:  Deborah A. Stone

Published in:  1989

Journal:  Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 104, No. 2 (Summer, 1989), pages 281-300.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here


Article:  Do the Weak Stand a Chance?  Distribution of Resources in a Competitive Environment.  pdf

Authors:  Judith Avrahami and Yaakov Kareev.

Published in:  2009

Journal:  Cognitive Science, Vol. 33, Issue 5, pages 940-950.

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

Find more of Judith Avrahami’s writing here  –  Publications List

Find more of Yaakov Kareev’s writing here  –  Publications List


If any of these links do not work, please contact me and I will try to help you find the article or book that you are looking for.


If you find any broken links on this blog, please leave a comment or send me a note so that it can be repaired.  Thank  you….

Link to the Article: Whose Death Is It Anyway? by Maureen Taylor, 2014

I am placing the link information for this article here with the thought that easier access to articles such as this will encourage reading and open discussion.  This is also an open invitation for you to write a precis on this article (or, any other article that you find necessary or interesting)….

You can find more healthcare articles such as this one, here.


Article:  Whose Death Is It Anyway?  Persepctive on End-of-Life in Canada.

Authors:  Maureen Taylor, BA, BHSc.  Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Published in:  2014

My copy was downloaded in November, 2014.  I found it here

If the link does not work, please contact me and I will try to help you find a copy.


If you find any broken links on this blog, please leave a comment or send me a note so that it can be repaired.  Thank  you….