Friday, May 25, 2012

Bears and Rx

I grew up 70 miles from West Yellowstone MT.  People came from all over the world to see Yellowstone Park, Old Faithful, and in the old days, the bears of Yellowstone.  We could comfortably leave our house early in the morning, drive to West for breakfast, spend the day at Old Faithful hiking and geyser gazing, feed some treats to bears along the road side in the Park, and be comfortably home in bed at a normal hour that night.

One day, literally one day, the bureaucrats decided that they would not allow the bears to feed on the garbage at the dump so they closed the dump.  There was also a sudden and forceful push to not feed the bears along the road side.  The bears that had been feeding there were suddenly shut off from their food source, and they didn't like it.  Some bears starved while others began looking for other easy food, like campers coolers, garbage cans, and anything else easy to get.  It took a long time to solve the problems that developed because of the original policy of letting the bears eat the garbage (a free lunch for them, at least at that time) and the sudden change to another policy of not allowing access to the "free" garbage lunches.

This headline is from a website on government freebies:
A dear friend was finding that her life was getting more complicated the older she became.  She had developed  hypertension, so she was put on medication for that.  That created a dry mouth, so another med was prescribed for that.  She developed other discomforts incident to getting older and new medications were prescribed for those ailments.  But the prescriptions were coming from different doctors who seemed to be focused on dealing with the malady related to their own realm of medical practice.  Every prescription has side effects that are often uncomfortable, so another artificial chemical plan of attack was engaged.  Finally she was just plain miserable, burdened with serious costs for the medications she was taking, and very discouraged.

So my friend went to another doctor who astutely diagnosed a different problem.  He had her bring every prescription and medicine bottle to his office and the two of them worked through every one.  The final plan was to stop all the old medications, under careful observation by the new doctor, and then deal with the problems that really needed attention.  She ended up going through a miserable few months, although never in as much danger as she had been when she was on the pharmaceutical a la carte she had been on. The pain was worth it.  Now she is on far fewer meds, she has control of her life because of some important life-style adjustments, and she has a lot more money to spend on doing things that she really enjoys.

Do you suppose our government could learn something from these real-life illustrations?  I hope so.

That's all for now.