Sites of the Week: September 23, 2012

“Democracy means that anyone can grow up to be president, and anyone who doesn’t grow up can be vice president.”

Johnny Carson

Did you hear about the woman bitten by a scorpion in her suburban Phoenix home? She was treated with two doses of an anti-venom at Chandler Regional Medical Center emergency room at a cost of $39,652 per dose. That’s not the punch line though. The anti-venom is manufactured in Mexico where it is available for only $100. The FDA-approved version is sold to U.S. distributors for $3,500 per dose and distributors charge hospitals roughly $3,780 per dose. Then the hospital turned around and charged their patient more than 10 times as much and nearly 400 times as much as the drug costs in Mexico. I’m not sure what the answer is, but clearly something is wrong with the U.S. healthcare system.

Now on to this week’s sites.  This week, I’m sending out two ‘Site of the Week’ recommendations that both take a look back.


This site comes to you via my sister, Maggie. It boasts that it is “The World’s Largest Online Newspaper Archive.” contains tens of millions of newspaper pages from 1753 to present. Most are U.S. newspapers, but there are some Canadian and U.K. papers as well. I was surprised that even my small hometown in Ohio was included and I was able to view ads and read  articles from the late 1800s.  I found it interesting to see ads for dress shirts regularly 50 cents on sale for 38 cents. It was a bit surprising to see how blacks and immigrants were depicted.

Every newspaper in the archive is fully searchable by keyword and date. The site has both free and subscription options. You can also sign in with your Facebook account. This seems to provide fewer limits while still being free.


How the Wild West REALLY looked

This UK Daily Mail site comes to you via my friend Gary W. The article features a series of photos of the American West from the late 19th century.


Ernie Orr sez “Check em out!”


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