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> What the F@%&?! And more feminist outrage...
chachaheels
post May 15 2009, 06:54 AM
Post #361


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Before I became a homeopath, I knew one thing about Canadian healthcare--and basically conventional medical care all around.

Unless you've broken a bone, do not go to a doctor or a hospital to find treatment (let alone a cure).

The only reason I knew this so well was my best friends when I was growing up and well into my adulthood were two sisters whose mother was a life-long nurse and head administrator of one of Toronto's busiest and most well known hospitals. And that is what their mother drilled into my head. Oh, and if you do break that bone, bring plenty of reading material. Or, as GT mentioned, a laptop and some DVDs.

Of course, I would like to add that if you've undergone a serious life threatening trauma, such as a car accident or a heart attack from which you must be on temporary life support or vital signs monitors in order to recover--go to the emergency room. I'd like to add that, but the state of emergency rooms is so poor here that the wait can be extremely long. During the Harris government's "reign of hospital closures and massive nurse firings" in Ontario, people actually died regularly of acute ailments in the waiting rooms of Ontario hospitals. But his government had a massive body count in other ways, as well.

No matter what you think about alternatives, the fact of the matter is that pharmaceutical corporations have their hands in the federal power structure in North America. The Insurance corporations are also in there, because they support and gain support from the pharmaceutical industries. As a result, conventional health care in North America is the worst in the world, because so much of it is geared to profit generation at the expense of human health. When you compare the quality and effectiveness of even conventional medical treatment in our countries with countries such as Sweden and even countries such as Cuba (where people and doctors are poor, but exceedingly well educated) you can see that people here are generally far less well. We have higher rates of infant mortality, for example: shameful in the 21st century, in a society that is so wealthy. In countries where those corporations are restricted heavily in terms of legislation and regulation, health care is so much more focused on the citizens and their needs. Alternative forms are often also covered by the universal health care systems, just as the conventional medicine is (that is simply not so in Canada, people have to pay out of pocket for access to good alternative health care and they don't know what they're actually paying for conventional care, which is astronomical in comparison, as poorly provided as it is). That is why alternative treatments, which have actually been in use far longer and are consistently more effective than conventional care but offer no "in" for pharmaceutical corporations or insurance companies, are called "quackery" and quickly made illegal or inaccessible wherever possible.

My point is that so much corporate control over health care in North America has placed the focus solely on profit generation and market dominance. There is no treatment in conventional medicine for chronic illness--but pharmaceutical companies relish the fact that "treatment" now means they will be able to sell you an increasing number of "treatment" drugs which will sustain your disease and actually create iatrogenic diseases to go along with it (for which you'll need even more drugs, that they happen to develop and market just for your needs). This is what we've come to define as medicine now, in North America.

As long as that goal remains the priority, it doesn't matter who is paying for medical care, a single payer set-up, private insurance policies you're forced to buy, or you, flat out of your pocket.


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angie_21
post May 14 2009, 10:43 PM
Post #362


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I don't think I knew that there were places without universal health care until I was 12 or 13, embarassingly enough. It was just never something I ever had to think about. It still completely blows my mind that people can be allowed to deny someone the right to LIVE because they can't afford the costs. Health care is, and should be, a universal human right, since it is something that can kill you not to have it. A year ago, Canadians were also crazy commies for having rules that governed their banking system, and now the world wants to copy that system.

Alberta somehow has an awesome health care system (people with disabled kids/relatives have even moved here from other provinces for it) and the provincial government has spent the last 20 years trying to get rid of it. It makes me crazy. I sure wish our feds would step in and make a few more rules, just enough to keep the provinces in line and set a basic minimum standard (and limit private health care. A two tier system is worse than none at all, in my opinion).

I can't even begin to express how very, very important I think this is. I can't even get into how much I hate the pharmaceutical industry. So I will stop here before subjecting everyone to a long, long rant.
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girltrouble
post May 14 2009, 09:21 PM
Post #363


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lol... actually i was going to thank you for sticking your finger in my eye, hot rod. lol. it did get things going here. stick around, k?


the pharma companies are trying to curry a bit of good favor in the hopes that whatever tinkering done on healthcare is only minor: pfizer is offering free viagra and lipitor and 70 other drugs for the unemployed.... can you smell the fear?


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"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

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HotRodLibrarian
post May 14 2009, 06:31 PM
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Hey Ladies,
GT - sorry If my line on being angry caused offence, didn't mean to! I was just going from One conversation with one friend in the states who had no idea what things were like in the rest of the world and I don't ever hear about anyone campaining for this kind of thing (and we tend to get most American news reported over here).
But It looks like I have stirred up lots of debate and got people talking which can't be a bad thing!
We have no where near a perfect health system here either, its sort of a weird mix of Public and Private and always talks of long waits at the emergency room etc.
Sounds like it's time for some major overhauls of Women's rights and political voices, did the 60's wave of Feminism really acheive much lasting??? just a question...


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girltrouble
post May 13 2009, 02:24 PM
Post #365


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lol... six hours in an emergency room sounds pretty good. the "st. elsewhere" hospital is notorious for 8, 10, 12+ hour stays for that same kind of care. i've suffered thru a few of them, so i learned the tricks. i called and asked an attendant when there was the least amount of traffic. so when i thought i broke my wrists a couple months back, i came home, iced them, and at 4 am visited their emergency room, with a movie in my laptop. 7hours.

it's kind of funny, when obama came in the republicans tried to smear him as a socialist, and found....
....nobody really cared. subsequently they tried calling him a fascist. :/

thing is, solar, from my understanding, in MA, it's not really universal health care. it's forced/subsidized health care. which isn't the same thing. it makes it illegal not to have healthcare, and forces people into a system they can't always afford. it's a win for the insurance companies. sure, they lose the poor, but they wouldn't have covered them anyways. the middle class is over a barrel. they have to, by law have coverage. insurance can jack up their rates, and still deny claims. same as they ever have.

don't get me wrong, i understand your point of view, and were you are coming from. it's smart and logical-- infact it was my pov, until i found out about the way that the credit companies gamed the system doing the states rights things, and started hearing about how they insurance companies were starting to do the same thing in anticipation of some sort of state by state health care system.
QUOTE
Obama was quick to bail out the banks, but not so on point with anything else. I have serious doubts about him[...]I think the one of the first hurdles is to disempower the pharmaceutical industry whose business is keeping people sick.

i agree! and disincentivize insurance companies.


--------------------

"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

"That's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later, we've got to work at it, no matter how many other careers we've had or wanted." --margo channing, all about eve
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candycane_girl
post May 13 2009, 11:23 AM
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That is what gets me whenever I see things about American healthcare on tv. It's all "Nooooooooo, it will lead to socialism!"

Give me a fucking break. Canada has universal healthcare and we are not a socialist country at all. Granted, our healthcare has a lot of problems but at least I don't have to worry about going deep into debt if I ever need surgery for something.

On a side note, I really hated Michael Moore's depiction of us in Sicko. He made it look as though Canada was some glorious place without long wait times and a nearly perfect system when in reality, a lot of Canadians are going to other countries to get faster treatment. Last year I sprained my ankle. I spent 6 hours in the emergency room just to get an x-ray and have a doctor inform me that it wasn't broken.
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zoya
post May 13 2009, 08:53 AM
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I'm gonna wayyyy oversimplify things here, because I know there are many many facets involved in the healthcare issue, but one thing I think that a lot of it boils down to goes way back to the cold war, when Americans learned that SOCIALISM = COMMUNISM, and COMMUNISM = EVIL THING THAT IS ANTI-AMERICAN AND WILL TAKE AWAY OUR FREEDOM. So many Americans don't even know what the definition of socialism is, they just think its' something big and BAD.

Thing is, there is, and has always been, a segment of the American public who have received government-funded, socialized medicine, and it worked very very well. I know, I was someone who reaped the benefits of it until I was 21. And that segment is the military. Until I was 21, we just went to the doctor when we needed to, showed our ID card, and had everything taken care of. Never paid. I never paid for a prescription until after my benefits as a dependent ran out. I remember asking my mom once why we didn't have to pay for doctors when some of my friends did, and my mom said "that's because your dad worked to earn this as an American serviceman." so I don't see why we ALL can't earn this as AMERICANS.

(of course, the whole military health care system has gone to shit, too, in recent years, but that's another story)
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solaria
post May 13 2009, 03:25 AM
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I take your point GT. That was an overgeneralized statement, for sure. But from my perspective, the banks run the federal government. and it is so corrupt.

Like you said, change has to come from the bottom up, and states are much faster to adopt progressive policy than the feds. (gay marriage is now recognized in maine!) massachusetts already has universal health care.

It would be beautiful if somehow they passed and funded a bill that would actually give congressional health insurance to all citizens, and it really should be free. Maybe that could happen?? I don'know. There's a lot of distraction going on right know, and all this fear mongering about the fucking economy. It's all a smoke and mirrors game.
People don't think they even deserve decent health care, because they've never had it. Obama was quick to bail out the banks, but not so on point with anything else. I have serious doubts about him, although I'm praying for him.

I think the one of the first hurdles is to disempower the pharmaceutical industry whose business is keeping people sick.

I agree that there are a lot of MYTHs created to sway the general population's opinions, and the whole Big gov=Bad stuff that was fostered during the reagan era has screwed most people while lining the pockets of a few. But, at this point in time, I think the states have a better shot at creating some kind of viable health care reform.

***expletives deleted
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girltrouble
post May 12 2009, 04:45 PM
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sorry solaria, i don't know what your sitch is, but this idea of feds fucking everything is a MYTH. since bush things have gone all to hell, true, but that's because he was hiring incompetents, and the democrats never challenged him. most people over retirement age have medicare and medicaid, which are both federal, everyone in the senate, house and whitehouse has federal medical care. the vets also have their healthcare, and it's good, but while bush was talking a good game about supporting the troops, he was cutting their legs, literally out from under them by slashing their funding.

someone put it brilliantly the other day, and i wish i could remember their exact words, but they said in effect:

most americans don't want governement healthcare because they the fear (rather stupidly, imho)some faceless bureaucrat who has no stake in things will decide their health issues.
instead most americans have no healthcare, or if they do, some faceless bureaucrat almost automatically denies them medicine because they are more interested in profit and shareholders than their health issues.

do you see what i'm getting at? right now there are kazillions of horror stories of people being denied for vital medicine because some company doesn't want to give back a small portion of the money they've been given over the years. it's crazy. so instead of saying saying hey, we can get something and thing smarter, we'd rather be cynical and get nothing, and it's KILLING US.

it's that same delusion that killed healthcare last time when clinton was in the whitehouse. we were still in the thrall of reagans words about the 9 scariest words in the english language (according to him):"i'm from the government, and i'm here to help." which was madness. do you really think that given supply and demand from the potentually dying, capitolists would suddenly forget their bottom line? please. that sort of reagan logic has brought our healthcare to it's knees. this idea that the free market is a cure all is bullshit thru and thru.

you can't buy into that, solaria, because then you are left to the wolves, who don't give two shits about you. we've seen what they would do left to their own devices in the last 50+ years. a financial system that lobbied for deregulation so they could screw over as many as possible, a health care system that delivers the least amount of service for the greatest price in the entire world. no, that has been a nightmare.

and if you think the states would create a solution, then you are fooling yourself. do you know they way the banks work? they lobbied congress so that states rights are stronger for credit cards and what state they base themselves in determines the rules they work under.

what do you think they did? they played one state off of another to get fewer and fewer regulation. eventually it was a race to the bottom with the least regulated states being home to the maximum number of companies, all threatening to leave unless there is further deregulation. no, the states, would make it worse than we have it now. universal healthcare is the ONLY real remedy.



--------------------

"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

"That's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later, we've got to work at it, no matter how many other careers we've had or wanted." --margo channing, all about eve
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solaria
post May 12 2009, 03:13 PM
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I agree, change is only gonna happen from the bottom up. States could do it I think. The fed's fuck up everything, I wouldn't want health insurance through them.
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girltrouble
post May 12 2009, 01:06 PM
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the problem is that for the last umpteen years there has been an illusion of security in this country, so in many ways business has had the upper hand, although in some sectors, the opposite has been true (dot com'ers are notorious for their perks). but for the rest of us, things haven't exactly changed, now the unemployment means they still have more leverage. but part of the problem has been a lack of political will. much caused during the clinton years, although he is only partially to blame.

what would help would be a gov't that saw it's citizen's health as more important than business' bottom line. while i think obama is doing ok, his reflex to be a moderate, has blinded him to opportunities. he has bungled the whole auto industry situation. the proper thing to do is to sell universal heath care using gm, ford, et al, as a glaring case in point. if we had universal healthcare, much of their debt would evaporate. much of the debt of most companies would vanish. he needs to sell his case to not just citizens, but business. instead, he has handicapped the car compaines with his over the top demands. not that they couldn't have used a serious retooling, particularlly in the white collar areas, who have sacrificed nothing, while the blue collar have sacrificed tons. remember: for any progress, it has to come from the bottom up.


right now he is meeting with business, the right and insurance, and talking to them about what they'd like to see, but he is not meeting with anyone on the hard left who want universal health care, not single payer. so from the start, his conversation is one sided, he's set the ceiling, so best case, we will have single payer, which isn't bad, but he really has no where to negotiate. he's painted himself into the corner. when you barter at the flea market, or a garage sale, what is the first thing you learn? don't start out where you want the price to be. throw out a bid you know you can't get, and dicker to the middle. you need the leverage that you might go further left to get the right to capitulate. and now is a good time. more americans are uninsured than ever. the situation HAS to change. now is not the time to nibble around the edges, but to make huge strides, but obama seems uninterested.

as for what to do, talk to your representitives, encourage friends and relatives to do the same, but push for universal health care, if nothing else than to give obama something to work with, even though he hasn't figured out he needs it. he's a smart guy, but his class is showing.




--------------------

"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

"That's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later, we've got to work at it, no matter how many other careers we've had or wanted." --margo channing, all about eve
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girl_logic
post May 12 2009, 11:18 AM
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Well, it pisses me off, and I'm not even an American yet. Actually it frightens me more than it makes me angry, and it explains why my LDR's sister in law who is a new mother is so _ridiculously_ exhausted and stressed out.

How does one go about changing this kind of thing if you're in the US? From what you're saying GT it sounds intractable.


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girltrouble
post May 11 2009, 11:51 PM
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well it wasn't so much the idea that we didn't know, angie, (you are absolutely right about most people NOT knowing), but being told that i ought to be angry. i think she had good intentions, a good question, and hell, i even agree with her.

but that last line.... just rubbed me the wrong way.

the last thing i am is an apologist for american capitalism, quite honestly, i loathe it. if i could snap my fingers and change it, i would, but we live in the real world, and like most things, it's much more complex than that.


--------------------

"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

"That's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later, we've got to work at it, no matter how many other careers we've had or wanted." --margo channing, all about eve
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angie_21
post May 11 2009, 07:51 PM
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It also depends where you work. A lot of unionzed places will give you more than the minimum. However, never mind length of maternity leave, thanks to the recession, pregant women are being outright fired, as well as finding out that their jobs "disappeared" while they were away on maternity leave. There's still a lot of discrimintation, never mind exploitation of the working class, to deal with. Most of the couples I know who had babies recently cose to split their parental leave, and it wasn't just the woman who stayed home. I hope this trend continues, because it would end one of the biggest excuses for discrimination against hiring women (the idea that they will cost the company more because of maternity leave, and that they will be more dedicated to their families than work)

GT, I can totally see why you took offense at the assumption that we odn't know anything about our own rights. Of course those of us who are actually on this board would know about these things. But the sad fact is, most North Americans have no clue how much were are ripped off in terms of benifits like vacation, overtime pay, and maternity leave, and it's one of the reasons it's so hard to change things. Our culture somehow believes that corporations have the right to treat us this way, because that's how capitalism works, and the economy would fall apart if we asked for more money (look at how everybody is demonizing the unions at the big car manufacturers!)
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girltrouble
post May 10 2009, 09:43 PM
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hotrod, while i take your point, and agree, it's kind of irritating for someone to tell us we ought to be angry about something, as if we had no clue.

what you don't understand is the complexities of our politics. yes, we know things are better in other countries, yes we understand we are being screwed, but in the us, we try to balance capitalism with socialism, like most civilized countries. but the way our system is constructed makes radical change extremely difficult. add to that, half the population is so scared they will lose what they have, they reject any change. we also have representation that, for the last 50+ years has listened more to the for-profit medical community than it's citizens that know there is a problem.

another thing you clearly don't understand is our history. the last major change in our healthcare system was after the great .depression. that's about the 40's. it's only been since ww2 that women in the work place was societally acceptable for most-- about that same time, roughly 55+ years ago. since then we have worked to fight discrimination, and even now, we are fighting for equal pay (which obama finally signed into law after our supreme court sided with business.

there was a time in this country when most papers had a labor AND a business section. but since the 60's the thumb of business has been slowly, steadily tipping the scales in their favor, and our unions and those labor pages have disappeared. during the reagan era, the national mind set was CEOs and the white collar first, workers last. to illustrate how out of whack things are, let's look at pay, which was regulated went from 3 to 1 in favor of executives to a point now, were, if i remember right, one exec makes about as many as 20 or more of his employees on average.

in any country employees make progress from the bottom up, thru struggle. any gains we've had have are thanks to unions and people who have died for things like our 5 day work week and 40 our full time and labor laws. without labor, any progress is eventually eroded. in the 80's reagan actively worked to break and destroy unions and with it any collective bargaining. even going so far as a mass firing of government employees who had a legal right to strike. the 90's weren't much better. while clinton was a moderate, in someways continued reagan's ideas of business first. when he tried to reform healthcare, his secrecy backfired. the opposition and business mounted a huge campaign and torpedoed his plan. until obama not only was serious change off the table, but at the start of GW bush's second term the right was trying to dismantle what little protections we still have like medicare and medicaid. were it not for bush being so incompetent, they might have done it. what changes the right did make have made the number of the uninsured explode.

believe me, we know the problem, but if there is one sector of american life that would be the most difficult to change-- it's medical care, and worker rights.


--------------------

"what a swell farewell party! we said goodbye to everything, including the lining in my stomach." - garvey, from the film, born bad

"That's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later, we've got to work at it, no matter how many other careers we've had or wanted." --margo channing, all about eve
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solaria
post May 10 2009, 08:13 PM
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yes this is a very important issue. I live in the States, and honestly I have given up hope of ever having a reasonable government that cares about people and makes good policy. There is so much nastiness in politics now, it seems like the system is so backwards....the US has one of the highest rates of infant and maternal mortality rates in the developed world also. And zero health care. The list could go on, and there is so much to be outraged about it's exhausting.

My solution for myself is to go outside the system as much as possible. Network with farmers, midwives, alternative healthcare providers, doing what I can to help, like having a sliding scale for low income massage clients, bartering, etc. Hopefully it will make it easier for others to do the same and I pray that someday things will turn around.
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candycane_girl
post May 10 2009, 05:48 PM
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hotrod, I have to say that I don't agree at all with just giving women 12 weeks maternity leave. It should be more like 12 months. I honestly don't know what the laws are here in Canada but I can't imagine having to put a little 3 month old baby in daycare.

eta: I just looked it up and it's kind of confusing. It talks about maternity benefits which go for only 15 weeks but then talks about something called parental benefits which go for 35 weeks. However, the parents have to split the benefits, they don't get 35 weeks each.
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HotRodLibrarian
post May 10 2009, 03:37 PM
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There is something that I want to get off my chest...

I am making a wide assumption here that most reader's of this forum are from the US (I am personally from Australia if anyone asks or cares) and I have to say I was completely shocked a couple of years ago when I asked a friend of mine what sort of Maternaty leave entitlments were available to women in the states.

"Your employer has to give you 12 weeks off"

I couldn't believe it! Over here you get at least a year, sometimes two and most women would take at least 6 months off. And we are lagging behind most of Europe who have paid maternaty leave (there is always on and off talk, currently on about bringing it in here too).

What sort of lobbying is going on over there to bring standards up to somewhere near that of the rest of the developed world?

Are you guys angry about this? You should be!!!



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girl_logic
post May 7 2009, 12:45 PM
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Well, the lady in the costume matches the logo, I'm guessing she's probably the woman behind the venture or a friend. That's pretty gutsy and reassuring. It seems like there's a lot of tongue in cheek there too (like the picture under "dancer wealth step 1"). I like it. She's pretty damn savvy. A lot of dancers are looking for this kind of info. I am not sure where anyone got the idea that stripping is a "classy" business though, although class definitely comes into our assessment of it tongue.gif


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twelve_percent
post May 6 2009, 01:40 PM
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Yeah. It looks business like, but it lacks class. The stripping costume kind of turned me off of it.


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