Saturday, January 11, 2014

Health Care, Housekeeping, Cyber-panhandling, Notes and Errata

Here's something fun:  for my first paycheck this year, I got a nice surprise -- every two weeks now, I get about a hundred bucks more deducted for my basement-level health plan. Happy New Year, right? Considering I not only have decent health insurance, but am a member of a manager-level public-sector union, I can just imagine what others are dealing with.
The easy snark would be to drop some #thanksobamacare smackdown, but of course there's more to it than that. You'd think with a variety of corporate-owned media entities jabbering 24-7-365, someone would step up and talk about what "Obamacare" really is. But it doesn't seem like they have.
So let's be more clear about this, since the media (and indeed Obama himself) have failed to do so -- what we call "Obamacare" is really an amalgamclusterfuck of industry-written regulations, mandating health care not so much to insure people who can't get insurance, but to ensure that when indigent people visit the ER and skip out on their tab, someone (that's you 'n' me, bunky) covers the tab.
So I'm well aware of what I'm being forced to pay for now, something I rarely if ever use. If it wasn't this, it'd be something else -- the hallmark of bureaucracies in general and post-industrial societies in particular is that, since you have more people with less to do, but everyone needs to look like they're doing something, what remains of the American middle class has to get used having someone's fucking hand in their pocket at every turn.
Can't ask the .1%ers to pay a little extra taxes, since they're job creators, right? (Just not here.) And by definition you can't ask the indigent and unskilled to pay for it, since they're barely eking their way through life. (And yet, there are people who earn a better living than I do, advocating for the rights of the disenfranchised. Awesome. Where do I get one of those folks to advocate for me being nickel-and-dimed to death?)
But I don't have an extra $200 a month to throw at bullshit either. I drive a 20-year-old car to work. Already I'm going to spend the rest of my life paying down interest on $200 textbooks, for a degree that should have come in two-ply. And now this, so that some bloodsucker can optimize their fucking stock portfolio on everyone else's back.
Anyway, I don't really care to hit folks up for money, because I know things are tough all over. But here are a few ways you can help a brutha out, with very little (or no) money and time:
  1. Check out our sponsors. Whether or not you buy anything, it helps.
  2. If you have Amazon Prime, you can borrow any of my books for Kindle from Amazon for free, and I still get a royalty.
  3. Spread the word. Nothing is more valuable than word of mouth.
  4. My political books are all lower than $2.99 in price, so if you want to buy one, they're really not that costly, and never will be.
  5. If you play guitar, or would like to learn, check out my Amazon Store at the top of the right sidebar. If you buy through that portal, I get the royalty and the sales commission. Most of the guitar books are $2.99 or lower, though a couple of the longer ones are $3.99, and they all have enough material to keep just about anyone busy for months.
The new Hammer book, Baker's Dozen, is available for download, only 99 cents. Starting Sunday, the book will be available for free for 72 hours. It's the Assholes of 2013 list, essentially. Grab a copy for free, take 30 seconds and write a review, and tell a friend at one of the kewl-kid blogs. Easy enough, doesn't cost you a dime, and you're out maybe 15 minutes of your day.

I had hoped to release the 2013 collection, Lucky '13, at the same time, but due to a multitude of other commitments and projects, I'm still working on formatting and cover design. Should be ready to drop next weekend; considering I didn't get Mockalypse and 12 in '12 out until April, I can live with mid-January for these new ones.
As always, thanks for your support.

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