Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Terror in the Dentist's Office

When you find a good dentist (or, for that matter, any other healthcare professional), you stick with him/her. Finding a family dentist is a special challenge for my household because my wife's father was a very prominent dentist. Since he suddenly passed away 25 year ago, my wife can never really, truly be totally satisfied with any other dentist.

Recognizing her extreme biases in the matter, my wife did, after some experimentation, find a local dentist to whose office she could bring herself without too much compunction. He was very excellent and well reputed (my wife even had occasion to recommend him to others), but he passed away at a relatively young age. His junior associate took over the practice, and that is who we now use for our dental care. My wife's personal hang-ups notwithstanding, we are quite pleased with the arrangement. I will note he does the cleaning himself; unlike his departed mentor (and, for that matter, my wife's late father), he doesn't delegate the work to his dental assistant. This gives him better opportunity to comprehend what actually is going on in his patients' mouths.

A few days ago I went to our dentist for my semiannual cleaning and x-rays. The visit was unremarkable as far as my dental health goes. What was remarkable was that the background music played during my visit consisted of one of Cat Stevens's albums.

Other than my own interactions, I don't know too much about the business side of my dentist's practice. I'm certainly not about to tell him how to run his practice (and, as mentioned, my family is quite satisfied with the quality of dental care he provides). Specifically, I do not know his arrangements for procuring the office background music, and I have no present plans to ask.

But I am sure that all intellectual property rights are duly honored and enforced in the arrangement. Which means that the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens (and before that, Steven Georgiou) and now known as Yusuf Islam, somehow receives his royalties for the music played in my dentist's office.

There are some serious questions as to whether the money that supports Stevens/Islam also supports terrorism. This is not based upon the mere fact that Stevens/Islam has embraced the Muslim faith, but upon his statements and actions and activities.

It is rather disconcerting to think that a person such as my dentist helps to support terrorism. But the royalty money for Stevens/Islam that comes from my dentist is probably far, far less than the terrorist support that comes from the typical American driver's gasoline purchases.

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