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A discussion on phobias

We’re all afraid of something. While most of us are satisfied fearing everything in proportion and fearing “normal” things like death, the dark, and spiders, that’s not the case for everyone. In fact, many people have incredibly interesting fears, which are often at the same time quite tragic, since they can keep people from living their lives to the fullest.

There is, for instance, ablutophobia, which is the fear of cleaning oneself or taking a bath. The implications of such a fear are obvious. To struggle with the simple act of doing daily ablutions (the Latin word for the act of washing, which is where the -phobia term comes from), could leave people embarrassed and struggling to succeed in simply getting jobs or making friends.

Another incredible phobia is amaxophobia. “Amaxo” in Greek means “vehicle,” and so, amaxophobia is the fear of riding in a car.

Unlike ablutophobia, many can probably sympathize with those who suffer from amaxophobia. Cars can be scary things, after all. There are car accidents to worry about, pollution, carbon monoxide. There’s also the less obvious but just as deadly possibility of car defects, and that truly is a scary thought to consider.

That thought, though, may hold the key to understanding how the phobia develops. With the idea of mechanical defects, we can immediately understand the horror of the loss of control. We’ve all seen movies in which someone is in a car where the breaks down work. What if the car won’t accelerate? Or won’t stop accelerating?

Such thoughts truly as terrifying, and those who suffer from amaxophobia struggling with them nonstop. It is this powerlessness that terrifies. Crucially, amaxophobia revolves around being a passenger. As a passenger, a person is required to trust completely not just in the car or in other drivers, but in a personal sense, in the one driving the specific car they are in. That is simply a step too far for such people, and any attempt to ride as a passenger leads to great fits of anxiety or worse.

The results of amaxophobia are no less than those for ablutophobia. In countries like America, there are often no other ways to get around than by car. Should such a person life in such an area, they would effectively be marooned at their home, unable to get further than the edge of their neighborhood. In such a situation, work, shopping, and socializing would become almost impossible. The person is trapped.

It is important to remember that phobias are not due to choice. They are the result of previous traumas or else, sometimes, chemical issues in the brain. The person, then, who suffers from ablutophobia, amaxophobia, or some other phobia, has no real choice in the matter.

Thankfully, there are methods of treatment that help people overcome at least partially these handicaps. All the same, they deserve our sympathy, our concern, and our help when we can give it.

Car recall notices

This is my first post on what I hope to make a regular series: car recalls.

I know this information is available elsewhere. I’ll be using cars.com for this post, for instance, and you could just go there. But I think this sort of information is important enough to spread it around. And since I know a few people who will read this and would never think to go to a place like cars.com, I think it’s a useful service.

I’m passionate about this because I had a vehicle defect issue in the past. The seat belts weren’t installed properly, and it very nearly led to a serious problem. I was with my wife, and we stopped suddenly and the seat belt on her side of the car started to come apart. Thankfully, we weren’t going very fast and we were able to sort of slide to a stop instead of breaking hard or stopping instantly in an accident. Still, it was scary. And I still have nightmares about what might have happened.

So, the recalls:

There’s been a recall on the 2004-2006 Mitsubishi Lancer for an airbag problem. If you’ve got a Lancer from those years, make sure to get that checked out.

Lexus HS 250h sedans from 2010 also have a problem. The transaxle assembly can lead to parts of your car wearing down.

Several different versions of a very popular car, the Porsche Cayenne, from 2003-2006, are being recalled because of a fuel filter problem that can lead to fuel leaking out. That could actually lead to a fire, so get your Porsche in right away, folks.

Finally, my last recall notice for this first post, the Volkswagen Touareg, years 2004-2007: there’s a recall out for the same reason as the Porsche Cayenne directly above. This stuff is serious, so don’t put this off.

Trust me, you may not think these recalls are important and that nothing can happen to your good, dependable vehicle, but you’d be wrong. I’m not the only one to experience the results of a car that came broken. There are whole areas of law dedicated to suing car companies that don’t recall these things fast enough.

And keep in mind, any recall means someone else complained about it—and either sued or threatened to sue—loud enough that the car company felt it was in their interest to recall.

If the message of a recall is getting to you from me, who got it from cars.com, who got it from the manufacturers, there’s already been serious enough problems with your type of car that very serious people are willing to lose money fixing the problem for free.

Yeah, and it’s free to get these things fixed. So, you really have no excuse. Otherwise, you may end up with a problem like I had. And you may need one of those lawyers.

What are the “Best Interests of the Child” in Phoenix?

Most state laws refer to child custody decisions as being in the “best interests of the child” but this may be interpreted differently in each situation, and each case is unique. In Arizona, family courts take into consideration many factors to determine where the child’s best chance of a balanced life lies.

The court considers the preferences of the parents as well as the child, and evaluates the relationship between child and parent as well as siblings (if any) and significant others such as grandparents. It will also look into the current educational and community situation of the child to determine if it would be healthier for the child to maintain the status quo or to allow the child to be placed in a new situation. Another important factor would be the age, mental state, and physical health of the child.

An Arizona family court judge is just as likely to award sole custody as well as joint custody depending on the circumstances, and to award sole custody regardless of the parent’s gender if it is in the best interest of the child. Historically, family courts tended to favor awarding physical custody to the mother for very young children when the parents cannot reach an agreement on their own, but this is not supposed to be the case any longer. The court will also decide on a visitation schedule for the non-custodial parent.

The parents are encouraged propose a jointly-prepared parenting plan subject to the court’s approval. This includes a custodial schedule, plans for education, religion, and health as well as plans for vacations and holidays. Unless there is a case of domestic violence or false allegations of such, or the judge discerns a level of coercion or duress in the custody agreement, such parenting plans are considered favorably as long as it conforms to the law. It would be advisable to have family law attorneys like the San Jose lawyers of Daniel Jensen draft such agreements in accordance to the parents’ wishes to ensure that it is a legally binding and fair agreement.

Nursing Home Abuse Cases on the Rise

After noticing bruising on their grandmother, two North Texas women decided to hide a camera in her room at a nursing facility. Camera footage revealed that their grandmother’s primary caretaker was verbally and physically abusive. Instead of helping the resident out of her bed gently, the caretaker would yank the 98-year-old woman up by her arm. Daily dressing and undressing proved to be a constant battle between the resident and the caretaker. The caretaker didn’t display gentleness while changing the resident’s clothes and was seen slapping and taunting her multiple times.

Despite their compelling video evidence, the family couldn’t do much to take the nurse’s certification away. Apparently this is one of many instances where nursing home residents suffer at the hand of unpunished facility employees. A study of reported incidents shows that abuse occurs regularly in one third of all United States nursing homes. According to the website of the National Injury Law Center, bed sores, fractures, dehydration, malnutrition, theft, gangrene, septic shock, infection, are all common ailments that neglected nursing home residents suffer from. A reprehensible practice called “double diapering” has landed some nursing home facilities on probation. Attendants will put two diapers on a resident so that they don’t have to take the resident to that bathroom as often.

A report indicates that the amount of nursing homes that have been cited for violations has increased yearly since 1996. Some people credit stringent rules for citing as the reason for this rise in violations. Facilities are legally required to report incidents, sometimes trivial in nature, as abuse. However, many incidents of abuse in nursing facilities are much more serious in nature. Since elderly residents require heightened supervision and care, a mistake like switching medications or not meeting dietary needs can have grave consequences.

Texas Child Support Laws

It is an unfortunate fact that when children are a factor in divorce, child support issues become a bone of contention, especially if the divorce is dissentious. As it is with child custody, the concern of the courts is to look out for the best interests of children of divorce, and to protect their rights to financial maintenance by their parents.

The laws governing child support in Texas is embodied in Title 5 Subtitle B Chapter 154 of the Texas Family Code. In it, the laws are very specific on what the courts may and may not order based on the circumstances. It is possible that both parents will be assigned a certain amount of child support in cases when neither parent has physical conservatorship (which is what they call custody in Texas). In most cases, however, the parent who is the physical conservator is the one who will receive child support payments from the non-conservator parent.

There are many possible scenarios described under Chapter 154, but perhaps what would be an important point to know is that the failure of one parent to pay regularly court-ordered child support may be considered a quasi-criminal offense under Texas Penal Code §25.05 if that parent does so even if he or she has the financial capability to make payments. The penalty for this (considered contempt of court) can be as much as 180 days imprisonment each time the case is brought before the Texas Child Support Division as well as $500 in fines. According to the website of the BB Law Group PLLC, the non-paying parent may also risk losing state-issued licenses including professional, driver’s, business and recreational.

If you live in Texas and have been having difficulty in getting your spouse to pay child support regularly even though there is a financial capacity for it, consult with a lawyer in the area about your legal options. Your child or children should not have to suffer from your spouse’s refusal to fulfill legal and familial obligations.

Emergency Room Errors: More Common than You Think

If you have ever watched an episode of the tv show ER, you will know that it is a scene of much drama and tension. But while the award winning show focused primarily on the lives and personalities of the medical personnel, the stars of the show in a real emergency room are the patients, with the medical personnel acting as supporting characters. In real life, however, the stars of the drama don’t always come out triumphant in the end, and in some cases it is due to preventable emergency room errors.

It is a fact that the medical personnel in an emergency room need to be on their toes and to make quick literally life-or-death decisions for their patients. In most cases this can save a person’s life, but when in some instances because of carelessness or negligence, errors are made that can adversely affect a patient’s life, sometimes permanently. For example, a patient dies of a ruptured appendix an hour after a busy ER doctor sends her home with a prescription for antacid for her belly ache. This is a case of emergency room error that may land the ER doctor in court for medical malpractice.

Some of the most common human errors that occur in a hospital emergency room include:

  • Anesthesia errors
  • Delayed treatment
  • Medication or dosage error
  • Failure to diagnose
  • Incorrect diagnosis
  • Incorrect treatment method

This happens more often than it should, notwithstanding the effects of stress and time-constraints often prevailing in an emergency room. Patients have a right to a standard of care from medical practitioners, and there is no excuse for sloppy work. If you or someone you know suffered injury or death due to emergency room errors, you have a right to pursue compensation from the person or entity responsible for the medical mistake in question.

The Dangers of the Caffeinated Food Trend

In response to the increasing trend of food products that have caffeine added into them, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is holding an investigation into the effects of caffeine, especially on children and adolescents.

The announcement comes alongside the release of a new gum from Wrigley that features caffeine as an additive. One piece of the gum has the caffeine content of half a cup of coffee. After discussions with the administration, Wrigley today announced that it will cease selling the caffeinated gum pending the results of the FDA investigation.

The concern is that these caffeinated food products are often marketed to children, who should not have stimulants in their diet. Too much caffeine can cause an increased heart rate or arrhythmia.

Officials at the FDA applaud Wrigley for taking interest in public health. Not much is yet known about the effects of prolonged caffeine exposure in children, so the administration is hoping other producers of caffeinated foods will make similar decisions as it moves towards enacting appropriate regulations.caffeinated foods

 

Raytheon to Move HQ from El Segundo to Texas

radar makerRaytheon Company, the largest employer in El Segundo, is moving its corporate headquarters to McKinney, Texas. The move comes as a part of reorganization efforts that have become the norm for defense contractors in response to the United States’ reduced defense budget.

A spokesman for the company says that the move will help the company be closer to its customers and streamline its efforts.

Between 6,000 and 7,000 people work at the El Segundo office, where the company makes RADAR sensors for heavy craft such as satellites, fighter jets, and ships.

It is becoming increasingly common for large corporations to move their operations from California to other parts of the United States. In this case, real estate in Texas is much cheaper and the laws are much friendlier to the operation of a business.

What You Might Not Know about Premises Liability

If you slip and fall in front of your neighbor’s house because of some oil he spilled on the sidewalk, is he liable? Yes, he is. abellawfirm.com

Premises liability can be a complex issue, but not in the above situation. Under premise liability law, your neighbor is responsible for keeping the sidewalk in front of his house clear and safe for the public. Your neighbor must have known the oil was potentially dangerous to the public, failed to clean up the oil (easily done with a piece of newspaper) or provide some type of warning about it to you or any passersby. If you sustained serious injury in your slip and fall, you can claim for compensation from your neighbor (or his insurance company) based on premise liability laws.

Premise liability statutes differ from state to state, but there are some general definitions that you should be aware of. This will help you identify when a premise liability claim can be made, and to ensure that you are never on the wrong end of a personal injury claim.

First of all, premise liability accrues to the person who is in possession of a physical property such as a lot, building, house, apartment, or establishment. A person is said to possess the premises when that person occupies and/or controls it. For example, a homeowner occupies a house and has control over what happens within and around the house. If a person rents an apartment but does not live in it, he or she is still said to be in control of it while the lease holds. A person does not necessarily have to own the premises to be in possession.

The second consideration in premises liability law is the nature of the relationship between the plaintiff and the defendant in terms of the plaintiff’s presence on the premises at the time of the incident. There are three types of relationships under premises liability: invitee, licensee and trespasser. The first two categories of people may be considered to have a “legitimate” presence on the premises, and to whom the possessor owes a reasonable duty of care, which if absent and results in injury renders the possessor liable. For example, if Joe invites Linda to his house and a rotting tree branch in the backyard falls on her head, Joe may be liable for Linda’s injuries.

The third category of person may be considered an “illegitimate” presence on the premises, or one who has no right to be there in the first place. For example, if Nathan who lives behind Joe’s property decides to take a shortcut to his house by going through Joe’s backyard without Joe’s knowledge or invitation, and that same branch fell on his head, Joe might not be held liable for Nathan’s injuries.

Dangerous Practices Result in Devastating Incidents of Nursing Home Abuse

The home-like care which the elderly, physically or mentally disabled young adults, and victims of accidents who need rehabilitative therapy receive in a nursing home ought to be enough guarantee that they shall be kept safe and in good health. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.

Nursing or convalescent homes, also known as skilled nursing facilities (SNF), offer medical care to elderly residents; they also aim at helping out their residents in daily activities, which include toileting, showering, and dressing.  Residents, usually 70 years and older, can enjoy a safe, nurturing environment in these facilities, as well as continuous nursing care.

While many nursing homes live up to the standards expected of them, many others fail to provide the necessary standard of care to their residents. Worse, elder abuse is an all too common problem in these facilities, including mental, physical, and even financial abuse. Threatening, insulting, humiliating, and mistreating a patient emotionally or verbally, as well as refusal to help a patient eat or get out of bed, are some of the most common abuses residents suffer from.

Physical abuse of nursing home residents residents includes forceful medicine and food intake, sexual assault, beating, refusal or negligence of the staff to feed, clothe or assist an elder in personal hygiene concerns, as well as the staff’s failure to keep patients from safety and health risks.

Financial abuse, on the other hand, consists in the staff stealing from patients, forcing patients to make unnecessary payments, and coercing patients to include their caretakers in the patient’s will.

The common causes of staff abuse in many nursing facilities are insufficient training, stressful working conditions, and not having enough registered nurses and nurse’s aides, resulting in staff burnout and loss of compassion for patients. Additionally, poor screening procedures can expose residents to dangerous or abusive caretakers.

This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what can happen due to nursing home abuse. You can learn more here.

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