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Topics started by "holland"

In need of some quiet R&R. - All of our vacations in recent years have either been NASCAR or treks (Europe, Middle East, South America, China). The treks were great but tiring. NASCAR is short and can be tiring. What I desperately need is a quiet cottage rental where the fishing (row boat style) is good. What's out there within a days drive or less? Primitive is not only OK, but preferred. Running water and inside "facilities" are the only basics we would want - cable TV, phone service, internet, not wanted.
posted by holland to entertainment at 12:45 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 02, 2007     16 comments

Have a favorite hospital? This could change your mind. - The Federal Government has released comparative rankings for hospitals in heart care, pneumonia and surgery. The hospitals were evaluated against standards of reccomended care. A nationwide average was determined and hospitals are measured against the national average. You can search by state and county. The rankings are a real eye opener. Over the years our family has come to believe that Toledo Hospital can be a less than the best place to treated. Turns out to be true. Two of our local hospitals are considerably above the national average. How did our much touted teaching hospitalfare? See for yourself.
posted by holland to health at 01:12 P.M. EST on Sat Jun 23, 2007     5 comments

PayPal Account Hacked! How in the hell? - OK, All you techie types, can any one explain how someone can hack into your PayPal account? I got what I thought was a phishing email late last nite that my password had been changed followed by a confirmation email from a company called VisionScripts that I could now download the software I purchased. I went to PayPal, through a new browser window, and after some difficulty because now I didn't know the password, to my great surprise there was an unauthorized purchase transaction from VisionScripts. Not a lot of money involved - $34.99 but wow, the implications. I did all the things you would expect. Reported the transaction as unauthorized and PayPal quite promptly cancelled it. Closed the credit card tied to Paypal (there were no other bogus transactions). Changed my password again with PayPal and other security stuff. Went to all the password sites I use for both ... - More>>
posted by holland to commentary at 04:57 P.M. EST on Mon Jun 04, 2007     35 comments

Bye Bye Benefits? - According to today's Wall Street Journal the average hourly labor cost for Chrysler by 2009 will be $94.77 compared to Toyota and others of $50.50. Daimler is actually paying a cash premuim of $650 million to Cerberus to get Chrysler's $18 billion in health care and pension "liabilities off it's books". How long before the UAW has to either self fund the members health care and pensions or the rank and file will have to make enormous concessions? How long before the retirees are suddenly running for jobs at WalMart for food money and health care benefits?
posted by holland to business at 11:01 A.M. EST on Tue May 15, 2007     81 comments

Tainted Wheat Gluten In Human Food - Don't eat that spaghetti! It was bad enough when it was Fido and Fluffy. Now it's Mike and Marie! The FDA just plain isn't getting the job done.
posted by holland to food at 08:07 A.M. EST on Sat Apr 14, 2007     6 comments

Where to Donate Used Computers - For the past several years our company has donated it's excess computer equipment to the Cherry Street Mission. We don't take junk. All equipment is throughly vetted by Virtual PC's just prior to donation, the hard drive wiped, a licensed copy of Windows XP is reinstalled and all documentation, warranty info and software registration is included. The last two batches of stuff were wireless ready. I know that donation is supposed to be selfless but geez, they don't even say "thank you" let alone give you a receipt. As we look at another round of replacements coming up this year is there any other agency that can use this equipment?
posted by holland to other at 03:51 P.M. EST on Mon Apr 09, 2007     9 comments

Consider This Before Switching From Incandescent To Compact Florescent - If LED's are coming for residential home owner use is it worth the expense to switch to compact florescent and be stuck for the next 10 years? A better strategy might be to switch only burned out incandescents and keep an eye on the market.
posted by holland to home improvement at 12:36 P.M. EST on Sat Mar 03, 2007     5 comments

Health Insurance - Union Security - My company is considering changing health care coverage from Anthem BCBS to Union Security, an Assurant Co. The Anthem BCBS renewal rate quote was intolerable. The representative offering the Assurant quote (and the BSBC renewal quote) is well known and reputable. He has done business with our company for over 15 years. He says Union Security is a good company but new in the area. Their rate is much more attractive. Is there any way to check on Union Security independantly of the rep? Union Security uses the Med Mutual of Ohio network.
posted by holland to business at 11:23 A.M. EST on Tue Feb 13, 2007     10 comments

Business Closing Strategy - Anyone have any sight into how to close out a convenience store? Owner looking to retire and the business is not saleable. Inventory is typical, cigarettes and acohol and groceries. Currently employs 10.
posted by holland to business at 08:24 P.M. EST on Fri Jan 12, 2007     5 comments

The Paws and Whisker's Cat Shelter New Facility - The Paws And Whiskers Cat Shelter held an open house Sunday to show off their newly expanded and equipped shelter. I was jaw dropping impressed with the new quarters. I, and my family, used to do stray animal rescue until burn out claimed us. An old friend, who has survived animal rescue fatigue, invited me out to see their new digs. For those of you inclined to support this type of organization I encourage you to visit.
posted by holland to pets at 09:59 P.M. EST on Mon Dec 04, 2006     No comments     Post a comment

Dental Insurance Usual Customary and Reasonable Fees - When getting quotes for a dental insurance plan for a business (small group) I could not get enough solid financial information to make a choice that would be best for the employees. It was easy to compare benefits and premium costs. The sticking point is the practice of "balanced billing" and "Usual Customary and Reasonable" (UCR). What I learned was that an insurance company will pay either 80% or 90% of the UCR. Sounds easy right? Pick a company that pays the most - 80% or 90% - for the least premium. What they don't tell you is that not all companies have the same UCR's. Some insurance companies have higher UCR's than others and consequently they pay the dentist more than other companies. If an insurance company has a lower UCR, then the dentist "balance bills" the difference to the patient. Hence, higher out of pocket costs to the ... - More>>
posted by holland to health at 09:27 P.M. EST on Tue Oct 24, 2006     9 comments

China Outsourcing of Dental Laboratory Work - OK, I know this means I'm old but but I am at an age where I have lost a tooth. As a result I needed a bridge. All right, I'm dealing with it. I got the bridge from a large dental practice --- Sears. Lots of visits and even with insurance the out of pocket was over two grand. I chose Sears years ago because they quoted the most reasonable costs for cleanings etc. Anyway, two weeks after the darn thing was seated it broke. Yup, broke, in several places mind you. The bridge is being remade at no expense to me, of course, but what an uncomfortable ordeal. While I was going through the impression making procedure for the new one I asked the dental assistant where the thing was made, as I wanted to write a letter of complaint and she replied "New Perfect". I asked for an ... - More>>
posted by holland to health at 12:01 P.M. EST on Fri Oct 20, 2006     8 comments

NBC 24 gets it wrong! - In the 11:00pm news last night reporter Lisa McCrady make a glaring error in the center piece of her reporting. The location for the crime, which she reported so prominently as the Village of Holland, was actually in Springfield Township. The Village of Holland geographically does not encompass all of the area that the U.S. Postal Service designates a Holland, Ohio mailing address. I'll bet the Village is going to be plenty steamed! I believe that a retraction, if that is what you do with TV reporting mistakes, is in order. Lisa McCrady owes the Village of Holland a big apology. It should be a black mark on her career.
posted by holland to media at 08:54 A.M. EST on Wed Feb 08, 2006     7 comments

Scoops!? Tim Wagener (Maumee Mayor) will announce for Lucas County Commissioner's Race against Thurber, Harry Barlos will accept Village of Holland Administrator position! - Rumors heard around the area that I would bet the milk money on. Opinions anyone?
posted by holland to politics at 07:55 P.M. EST on Mon Dec 19, 2005     20 comments

Give Me a Paper Ballot and a Purple Finger, Please! - In "One of America's Great Newspapers" (12/16/2005 The Nation) it is reported from Tallahassee that "Tests on an optical-scan voting system used around the country showed it is vulnerable to hacking that can change the outcome of races without leaving evidence of fraud, a county supervisor said. The voting system maker, Diebold Inc., of North Canton, Ohio sent a letter in response that questioned the test results and said the test was a "very foolish and irresponsible act" that may have violated licensing agreements. Diebold's letter was written by its senior lawyer, Michael Lindroos, and sent to the state of Florida, Leon County, and the county election supervisor, Ion Sancho."
Foolish and irresponsible? I think not. Any computer system can be hacked by someone sometime. This should throw a big red flag up about Diebold, whose CEO's conservative political ideology is well known. The only surprise here is that ...
- More>>
posted by holland to commentary at 07:24 P.M. EST on Fri Dec 16, 2005     14 comments

Pumping Gas? - Do The Math! - Watch the pump when pumping gas. There have been two verified instances by Lucas County Weights and Measures of gasoline pumps over charging. One instance was believed to be deliberate. The pumps registered (displayed) 25 cents to 50 cents (depending on which pump used) when the credit card was inserted PRIOR to pumping or touching the nozzle. In the second instance every pump at the station added 2 to 5 cents to the total charge. It was not a per gallon miscalibration. Make sure that the pump shows all zeros after inserting the credit card prior to using the nozzle. If you encounter a problem note the pump number, save your receipt and call the Lucas County Auditor's Office - Weights and Measures. There may be a piece on Channel 11 at 6:00 tonight.
posted by holland to commentary at 11:52 A.M. EST on Wed Aug 31, 2005     4 comments

Reform Ohio Now - Two questions: If the Blade really has a liberal bias then why wouldn't they be reporting this? The larger question is: Will Reform Ohio Now be successful?
posted by holland to politics at 08:26 A.M. EST on Mon Aug 22, 2005     3 comments

Bernadette Noe - Not Just An Innocent Wife? - Does anyone truly believe that Bernadette Noe is an innocent unaware spouse regarding her husbands political or Coin Fund activities? According to THE RAW STORY she is quite capable of playing dirty on her own. Ohio, and the nation, may be caught in a perfect storm of total Republican control through Bernadette's help, not just her hubby's actions.
posted by holland to politics at 05:14 P.M. EST on Mon Aug 01, 2005     23 comments

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