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review 2018-01-12 23:17
A Pointed Expose About Government Snafus
The Federal Government is Run by Idiots!... The Federal Government is Run by Idiots! - James E. Joyce

There's little doubt about its contents, with a book named The Federal Government is Run by Idiots! This represents plain and simple thinking, and is a "nasty little book" that pinpoints federal government processes as the cause of forces destroying American society and democratic ideals.

 

Taxpayers in revolt receive a presentation that looks like an illustrated comic book coverage in many places, featuring large-size print and an approach that would seem to indicate its appropriateness for a younger audience; but which actually will prove accessible to busy adults who want more of a quick synthesis than the usual weighty political read presents.

 

Appearances aside, it should be noted that The Federal Government is Run by Idiots! is a book most decidedly directed to adult American taxpayers, and is crafted in such a manner that even those with low reading skills or who are unfamiliar with statistics, math, or politics will find it enlightening.

 

There's no love of either Democrat or Republican leaders in this damning report: both receive 'F' marks, along with the government entities that have supported bureaucratic snafus and leaders that promote tax codes with sweeping debt attached to them. James E. Joyce maintains (and supports with facts) that were it not for the federal government's shenanigans, the average American would have $40K more in their pockets annually for retirement income.

 

There are many eye-opening accusations (supported by statistics and facts) that will give liberals and conservatives alike pause for thought - including that the current social security system is akin to a "federal Ponzi scheme" and should be replaced by a National Investment Retirement Fund. Joyce maintains that social security has been a dishonest scheme since its instigation in 1935, and advocates a better replacement vehicle on the state level. He points out that in 1935, "the average American died before reaching age 65." Now that longevity has increased, proponents of the system are trying to assure that the benefit age is adjusted so that those who pay into the system actually don't reap its full benefits.

 

It should be noted that professional editing would have made the book a smoother read. But as a counterpoint, this is intended as a comic book and, as such, is a more inviting way of comprehending many serious facts without the grammatical density of comparatively complex discussions of the subject.

 

The Federal Government is Run by Idiots! is no light discourse, but a solid review that is purposely presented in a format that will lend to accessibility and inspection by even the busiest reader. After a section of admonitions and damning evidence, the meat of the book lies in a second section that details the 'Restoration of the American Dream'.

 

This may be a nasty little book; but truthful examination of a complex system is never a cozy read.  Want to change things so that Americans can retire at 52 and lead a better life? The keys included here offer food for thought on making this process a reality.

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review 2017-06-08 12:19
A great book for researchers of the topic and anybody curious about the history of psychiatry and psychiatric treatment in the UK in the XIXc
Lunatics, Imbeciles and Idiots: A History of Insanity in Nineteenth-Century Britain and Ireland - John R F Burt,Kathryn Burtinshaw

Thanks to Pen & Sword for gifting me a copy of this book that I freely chose to review.

I have read and reviewed several books by Pen & Sword and have commented on their great catalogue before. As you know, I’m a psychiatrist and could not resist it when I saw this book.

The authors, who are well-known for writing about genealogy, note in their introduction that when people try to trace their ancestors and find that some of them seem to have disappeared from records or be lost, a possibility worth considering is that they might have had a history of mental health problems or epilepsy. If that is the case, checking the records of lunatic asylums, workhouses and the poor law records might provide plenty of information not available elsewhere. Their book focuses on mental health care during the XIX c. although there is a chapter about the pre-nineteenth century situation (that chapter, in particular, is very hard, and the way patients were cared for at the time until new reformers came along, is scary to read).

The book is divided into chapters that revise the laws in different areas of the United Kingdom, the asylums that were built, who run them, how they worked, and always offers some case studies, that share the stories of some of those patients, for the most part, voiceless and lost to history.

Later chapters look at the life in asylums (that as a psychiatrist, I found fascinating), the staff and their work, and then at different types of patients (the criminal lunatic, imbeciles and idiots, epilepsy, general paralysis of the insane, puerperal insanity, suicide). The chapters on diagnostic and causes, and treatments were particularly illuminating for me (even though I had read of some of them, the case studies and the details brought it to life).

I started working in psychiatry in the UK in 1993 and by then many of the asylums had disappeared, but, although I’ve only ever talked to people who had worked in them in the late XX century, I’ve had a chance to visit some of those fascinating buildings (some are listed buildings now and have been transformed into apartments and offices) and some are still dedicated to caring for people with mental health disorders, although, evidently in a very different form. With the changes to the philosophy and theory of caring for people with mental health problems, the discovery of new medications and a more enlightened attitude towards learning difficulties, it is important to record and revise how much the situation has changed, and not lose sight of the history of those places and particularly of the people (reformers and especially patients). In my professional capacity I’ve heard many discussions as to the advantages and disadvantages of the different models of care, and after reading this book I have gained perspective and feel much better informed.

As I read, I highlighted many points and quotes I wanted to share, but some are so extreme (when talking about ‘care’ pre-asylums) that they put horror movies and books to shame. I did not want to sensationalise a book that is, above all, a chronicle and a study that reflects changed social attitudes and laws, and that is invaluable to anybody who wants to have a good overview of mental health care in the UK in the XIX c.  and part of the XX (a recent book about R.D. Laing reminded me that even with the discovery of new medications, some things had changed little regarding the care of the mentally ill until the later part of the XX century).

This is a good compendium of the care of people with mental health illnesses, learning disabilities and epilepsy in the XIX century, and it encompasses laws, reformers, workers, buildings, and more importantly, patients. It is a great resource for researchers looking to gain a general view of the subject and offers biographies of the main players, a glossary and bibliography. The paperback copy also has great drawings and also pictures of ledgers, buildings, patients. I recommend it to anybody looking for information on the subject, to genealogists interested in researching in depth some of the lesser known records and to anybody interested in the history of psychiatry and psychiatric care, in particular in the UK.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2016-07-16 20:15
Barefoot - Michelle Holman
DNF at 32%
What I thought while reading it was that surely I was insane for reading more than ten percent of this crap.

Warning:
Strong language and spoilers ahead!

What makes this a clusterfuck of epic proportions:
1st- Well the main characters are two fucking idiots, who happen to hate each other but who want to bang one another... just because... which was okay as long as the author realized that they no had no spark whatsoever when it comes to ROMANCE.
2nd- Still related to the first point, I really don't find "hedgehog romance" all that interesting: honestly they were just better of killing one another. Also, she's a cop, she could probably get rid of the body somewhere... despite the guy being "family".
3rd- If a woman says that she doesn't want to have kids, and that she wants to focus on her career, the author should STAY ON THAT PATH, and not give her a FORCED PREGNANCY.
4th-The whole thing becomes even more UGH, when the main character reaches the time limit for an abortion without having a clue that's she's PREGNANT, because she's one of the special ones who bleeds while pregnant!
5th- The guy who got her pregnant suspecting that he may have gotten her pregnant in the first place, but what the hell! Maybe she isn't, so why should he say anything?!
YOU FUCKER!
6th-The idiot above saying that SHE IS GOING TO KILL HIS BABY!

You know what? If you want to write a book about how pregnancy can change a woman "for the best". And how "pro-life" you are, go ahead and write it. Just know that I refuse to be preached about it. And as such, I'll just throw the damn thing in the garbage.

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review 2016-05-29 00:00
Alien Contact for Idiots
Alien Contact for Idiots - Edward Hoornaert Alien Contact for Idiots is a laughter-inducing, heart-warming, and hormone-overloading read by Edward Hoornaert. Written with a deft touch, wonderful characters, and that handling of the cheese that some authors do so well, it’s the perfect read for when you just need a bit o’ fluff, but you can’t do without your science fiction.

I actually read the second book in this series, Alien Contact for Kid Sisters, first, and loved it because even though it had all the elements I look for in my fluff books, it also had a great story of personal growth going on. So, I was definitely happy to hop backwards and read the first book in the series for review. I’m honestly kind of torn on which book I like better. I feel like I preferred the slightly more serious tone and the emphasis on the characters’ mental states more in the second one, but this one is just so cheesy fun. Though, I will say, the author foreshadows the major issue dealt with in the second book quite well.

I read it late at night, laying in bed, and at one point cracked up laughing so hard I woke my partner up. The first time, he was fine with it. The second time, however, Mr. Hoornaert earned me some serious stink-eye. I love that the characters act believably for the most part. This is one area (among many) where the author excels. There’s definitely some serious exaggeration added in at times for comedic effect, but at the root of it – you believe in the characters. They’re intelligent (or idiots), they’re good, they’re insane, etc. They are what they are, and you buy it completely.

Alien Contact for Idiots is definitely worth buying and tucking away for when you need chocolate, quiet, and a fluff read to soothe your soul and make your heart have hope for happily ever afters again.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
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review 2016-01-21 19:58
Not my cup
The Sweetest Chase (Heart of the Storm) - Sharla Lovelace

Arc provided by Montlake Romance through Netgalley

 

Release Date: February 23 rd

 

I really don't know what went through my mind to make me request this. :/

Yes, there's the cover that strangely pulled me in...

Also the vague similarities with the film Twister could have something to do with it...

And okay, I had already read a novella by the author, and I had liked it.

 

The thing is, I knew by that synopsis that this story could be tricky: a woman about to get married, but who feels something about her best friend.

It could be awesome. Or it could be a disaster -_- if there was cheating.

 

First of all, it would have been NICE to know that this was the second book in a series.

And yes, you can read it without having read the first one. That's what I had to do, right?

The thing is that there's so many characters "running around" on most of the scenes, that I just couldn't get a clear idea on them all.

 

Then, there's the important stuff:

_ The Main characters: Quinn and Simon.

Quinn, who in my head goes by "Barbie Adventure" -_- was the worst excuse for a female leading character I've encountered in a long time.

. She's thirty years old, engaged to be marry in a month_ they have been dating for three years? now _ to a guy who belongs to the same social circles that she does (up-class of course)... although the reader will have no idea WHY they're still together, because they don't share anything in common besides the blueness of their blood...oh, and their blondness.

 

. She's of course beautiful. With long legs and long blond hair that she actually HATES, but which she can't cut off because mummy and fiancée wont like it .... *snort*

 

.The mummy dearest has hijacked the wedding of her dreams ( outside... with you know, pork ribs and daisies ) and she's *okay* with it, because the same happened with her sister. You go, girl! Way to stand up for yourself.

 

So throughout most of the book we have to deal with this woman who has no backbone in her. Who is supposed to adventurous and independent, but who in reality is just her mummy's girl.

She doesn't take responsibility for her acts and then she blames her friends: which means that she and Simon go from best buddies to two people attacking one another as if they were stupid teenagers.

I read every single page until a little over half and then I just skimmed it. I just couldn't take any more of them or of the boring reality show lets talk about your lives y'all until there's a good storm that they could chase.

I hate reality Big Brothers shows.

Definitely not my cup.

 

 

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