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Give a man a leg up

What John Venlet says.

Joel over at The Ultimate Answer to Kings (now at its own domain name, is in dire need of a new prosthetic leg — which the good old U.S. health-care system has priced way, way out of his reach.

I know Joel. I know how long he’s suffered with his old leg, despite benefactors having bought a much better foot for him a few years back. I’ve seen the sores on his stump with my own eyes. I know how the manual labor that brings in his small living is hurting the hell out of him and probably going to damage him even worse in the long run. In desperation, he’s thinking about breaking down and turning to the state for a new prosthesis. His friends — freedomistas all — understand.

But Joel has to face himself. He’s also got the small problem of being so far out of the system that he doesn’t even have an address, let alone 1099s or 1040s to prove his almost non-existent income. He does, however, have landlady, who sometimes receives money for him.

So … well, what John Venlet says.


  1. Karen
    Karen July 12, 2012 5:25 pm

    I’ll need a few day’s notice if it comes to finding and gathering at the secret Lair to bushwack Joel and haul him off to get that new leg.

  2. LibertyNews
    LibertyNews July 12, 2012 6:18 pm

    Holy crap! I had no idea that he had a prosthetic leg. I couldn’t accomplish a quarter of the stuff he does and I’ve got 2 legs.

  3. gooch
    gooch July 12, 2012 6:45 pm

    Claire, You of all people know of my personal financial status [well below the poverty line] but even I can afford to send a couple of bucks to help My Friend when he is in need.
    It won’t be much but it will help if enough of us contribute. This is IF it indeed comes to pass that he has to go to the state to obtain a new prosthesis.

    THIS Part =”He’s also got the small problem of being so far out of the system that he doesn’t even have an address, let alone 1099s or 1040s to prove his almost non-existent income. ”

    May be a bigger hurdle than Joel’s DBD morality pangs.

    As ready as Leviathan is to steal our monies they are “defended” from spending any of that ill gotten gain by Many Multiple Layers of red tape.

    Look for PM by email. (Note: I has new email address)


  4. Me not you
    Me not you July 12, 2012 10:59 pm

    Any chance of getting a Kickstarter or Indigogo account started that we can send money to out?

  5. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2012 6:14 am

    Good people — Unfortunately, I got an email from Joel in which he wrote please don’t hold a fundraiser for me. If he wants to, he can come here and post his reasons (which I can sum up as, “What if we raise only a few hundred dollars and I have to give it all back because it’s intended for a leg and that’s not enough to buy the leg?”). He might want to come here and give a better explanation. But anyhow, for the meantime, it won’t be happening. I see that feralfae, on Joel’s blog, has given him addresses for some organizations that might help. So we’ll see …

  6. Pat
    Pat July 13, 2012 7:19 am

    Well, he wouldn’t have to give it back, would he? (Not to me at least.) He might just consider it an early Xmas(atheist?)/B’day gift. Sometimes it feels embarrassing to accept a no-strings-attached gift – but it shouldn’t. It comes with respect and appreciation for the soul that survives in the body.

    A man who’s trying to eke out an honorable lifestyle such as Joel is putting himself through is worth more than this country deserves.

  7. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 13, 2012 9:02 am

    Joel may want to reconsider the fund raiser, actually. The cost of the prosthesis is not the only expense. He will probably have to travel to wherever it is made and stay there for at least a few days for the fitting and retraining. He may have to make that trip more than once for that purpose, and even might need to be hospitalized if his stump is in bad shape and requires surgical remodeling to accept a new prosthesis.

    And the longer he waits, the worse it will get. Not to mention looming Obummercare BS on the horizon.

    This needs to get done yesterday!!

  8. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2012 10:06 am

    I hope you’ll go tell Joel that at his site, MamaLiberty.

    I’ve been worried for a long time about what all that heavy labor is doing to his stump.

  9. Ellendra
    Ellendra July 13, 2012 10:42 am

    What about it is causing the sores? Is it possible that giving it a removable/washable cotton lining would help?

    I’m not familiar with the ins and outs of prosthetic devices, but I do know that one of my little cousins had some awful sores on her chin and forehead because of a dental contraption she had to wear to correct an overbite. While she wasn’t wearing it I borrowed the pieces and made some cotton slipcovers for it out of fabric scraps I had laying around. The next day her mom called, all excited because the sores were starting to fade.
    (Actually, the forehead piece looked like a slipcover, the chin piece looked more like a diaper. But it worked, and it didn’t interfere with the function of the device.)

  10. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2012 11:12 am

    Ellendra, it feels terribly odd to be discussing a friend’s amputation stump. But he keeps that thing padded with so many layers — slipcovers, foam, you name it — that it’s a wonder he doesn’t sweat to death before he’s 10 minutes into shit shoveling. But so much weight gets put on that leg and there’s so much motion now that leg and stump don’t fit each other any more that nothing much helps.

  11. bustednuckles
    bustednuckles July 13, 2012 12:38 pm

    I tried to leave a comment at his place urging him to do whatever is necessary to get his condition improved but there was no “Submit Comment” button!
    I have left comments on his new site before so this was a surprise.

    You are a good friend to him and he has the utmost respect for you.

    My best to you both.


  12. Joel
    Joel July 13, 2012 4:04 pm

    it feels terribly odd to be discussing a friend’s amputation stump.

    It feels terribly odd to have it discussed in so many places, believe me. My stump has become quite the topic of conversation since that unfortunate post at my blog, though I will confess all the discussion has gotten me off my ass and looking for alternatives.

    I was gobsmacked that anybody would even consider holding a fundraiser for li’l ol’ me – it’s not like I’ve got cancer. And as Claire privately suggested, some of my reluctance is probably just pride. But she also mentioned the most practical objection, which is that estimates on replacement limbs run anywhere up to $20,000 and are never under five figures. There’s no way any fund raiser could raise that kind of money, and what would I do with the money if/when it fell short?

    The good news is that alternatives are coming out of the woodwork. There are private organizations that help people like me with problems like that and I didn’t know any of them existed. I’ve got some emails out asking for information now.

    As to Mama Liberty’s very practical issue: Travel and accommodations are actually the least of my problems, if I can pick the city where the leg is made. I’ve a friend in a large city about five hours from me who has offered to put me up for however long it takes, and provide transport to and from. She even has room for the dogs and Click.

    So I’m working on it.

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