Where's "Cherubim"? I've been skeptical of the New York Daily News report that Elizabeth Edwards--she about whom no ill can be spoken--has been anonymously slagging her enemies (and others) in Web comments sections under the pseudonym "Cherubim." But I would be more steadfast in this skepticism if a) there had been some kind of denial from the St. E camp and b) the previously prolific "Cherubim" hadn't mysteriously stopped posting after the Daily News story came out . ... At least I can't find anything. ... Not a peep on HuffPo . ... Nothing on Kos . ... You'd think that if Cherubim wasn't Elizabeth (or even if she was) she'd post something saying "I'm not Elizabeth." ... I'm still off board--it's too bizarre--but, hey, maybe Elizabeth Edwards really is the sort of person who thinks Michael Jackson was "murdered by powerful people in the record industry." That would explain a lot. ... It's also possible that the Cherubim story is some kind of trap, attempting to bait the blogosphere and MSM into jumping to irresponsible conclusions. ... Yes, I'm that paranoid. ... 10:57 P.M.
Charles Peters argues that any health care reform bill should simply prohibit doctors from owning the outfits that administer expensive tests (like CAT scans and MRIs).** This seems like a simple prophylactic measure that could do a lot to curtail excess ordering-up of services--the sort of thing that got Atul Gawande (and through him, Barack Obama) so riled about McAllen Texas . And it would do it without the grand untested curve-bending suggestions --including " difficult democratic conversations " about end of life treatment--that have only succeed in scaring the elderly into opposing, and perhaps sinking, Obama's reform.
But Peters tells me the ownership ban is not in the bill. ... What, they can come after bloggers for conflicts of interest , but not doctors?
**-- Update: Alert reader A.K. notes I've mis-summarized Peters' point. A 1992 law already prohibits doctors from owning the imaging outfits to which they refer patients. But there's an exception for when the X-ray or MRI device is located within the doctor's office, a loophole that's gotten bigger as the machines have gotten smaller . It's this "in-office" loophole that Peters (and some in Congress) would like to see closed. ... That still seems like a simple change that would save money. If doctors want to give patients instant service, they could contract to have machines owned by others stationed in their offices, the way some water coolers are owned by bottled water companies, no?. ... 10:56 P.M.
Here's an aerial photo of Iran's once-secret centrifuge facility at Qom. Does it look non-blowupable to you? Me neither. I suppose it depends on how deep its tunnels go-- but those certainly don't look like mountains it's under. And, as Mike Murphy's twitter feed notes, American weapons experts have been developing fancy new non-nuclear bunker-busting bombs that seem maybe capable of doing the trick. (You have to like the one with the Gatlin' gun on its nose .) ... Obviously I'm not advocating a strike against Qom. Even if it wouldn't be a geopolitical calamity, we may not know what other secret, buried facilities Iran has. I'm just saying that when pundits say we can't strike because the facilities are buried and hardened, I don't believe them. Do the Iranians? ... Bloggingheads discussion here . ... 10:55 P.M.