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Letters to the Editor

A clean sweep

September 15, 2009

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To the editor:

A picture is worth quite a lot of words. The photograph of the protester in Washington carrying a sign labeling President Obama as fascist finally made me realize what Rep. Lynn Jenkins and our esteemed senators and the honorable ex-Gov. Sarah Palin have been trying to tell me. It’s simple: Government-sponsored health care equals socialism and fascism.

I call on Jenkins to lead the way to end socialism-fascism in our country. She should insist not only on preventing the government-sponsored option in health care reform. She should demand that we dismantle Medicare and Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program and the Veterans Administration system. The National Institutes of Health, the Public Health Service and the Centers for Disease Control must go. The Environmental Protection Agency tries to keep people healthy, so I suppose it should go. Oh, and the Food and Drug Administration. Surely the Association of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers could police themselves better than Big Government can.

While she is at it, she should insist that our local socialist-fascist institutions — the county health department, the Visiting Nurses Association (including hospice!) and the Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center — should all be abolished. Let’s make a clean sweep for life, liberty and the pursuit of keeping what’s yours and forget about the rest.

Or maybe not.

Comments

Richard Heckler 5 years ago

After both republican home loan scandals medicare and social security are a blessing to those who lost their retirement plans in the process.

The problem is not about government insurance or that government insurance would be bad. It's about the high profit insurance business throwing tons of health care dollars at legislators who are influenced with money and plenty of it.

And it's all about legislators as shareholders....yes their personal money making portfolios. They are among those who love to make money off the misfortune of others. There are plenty of those types waging war against smart medical insurance.

Medicare Insurance For All would be most attractive to small business,large business and familes/individuals. It's the only one that makes dollars and sense. It makes sense and would require much less money to operate because all of it could be done under one umbrella which saves money.

HR 676 represents the key to jobs jobs jobs and new economic growth to the nation. It will make the USA far more attractive to new industry and hopefully halt Toyota from relocating more factories to Canada.

HR 676 is key to ending the recession which can only happen through replacement of millions of jobs. 8 million jobs were lost from 2007 to May 2009. The USA cannot afford this type of activity. Considering jobs lost to outsourcing over the last few decades to Reaganomics/Wreckanomics this country needs 20 million new jobs to make the USA regain respect in the world of finance. Retaining the most expensive medical insurance in the world will not work.

Medicare is in place ready to for all to use. Some fine tuning is all that would be necessary. HR 676 is the key to fiscally responsible medical insurance for all.

HR 676: Smart Medical Insurance Improves Our Quality of Life And Our Wallets! http://www.healthcare-now.org/

National Health Insurance does not remove competition from the actual health care industry. It will be alive and well. Profits will be based on customer service and clinic performance based on the clients experience. This is my perception of competition.

This is the only insurance program that substantially reduces the cost of medical insurance across the board: http://www.healthcare-now.org

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number3of5 5 years ago

Liberty_One you have to be able to earn enough money in your life to have any to save even in your house, bank or by buying funds, social security forces you to save as the government saves it for you ( in a sense).

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snoozey 5 years ago

I would point out that the deregulation in the banking and investment industry occurred during the Clinton administration's tenure in office and specifically the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, which had prevented the abuses in these financial areas, was signed by then president Clinton. I would argue that to characterize the banking and loan scandals as a Republican venture is contrary to the facts. It may be more accurate to describe the savings, investment and health care debacles as an example of the political class choosing the financial incentives of lobbyists over the needs of the American public - not an event unique to either political party but part of the ongoing problem with both parties and their lack of responsibility to the welfare of the people who elected them.

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grimpeur 5 years ago

Don't forget roads, fire departments, universities, military protection and all those other socialist institutions.

These intellectually bankrupt don't have ideas of their own.

Snoozey gets the cigar. Anyone simple-minded enough to claim that this (deregulation, corporate welfare, etc.) is a partisan problem should be ignored until they're willing to criticize their own team. Effin' homers...

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Brent Garner 5 years ago

Folks, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are all going broke. So is the VA health system. Why? Because all are government run programs. Take social security. Our FICA taxes don't go into any lock box or account for ourselves. They go in and go right back out to pay for current retirees. That works as long as there are plenty of people paying in and not too many taking out. But, we have passed the tip over point. Right now there are about 2 or 3 workers supporting each retiree. When social security started it was over 20 workers per retiree. The system, like most government systems, is broke, is based on false assumptions, and will fail. If each of us were permitted to keep our FICA and stash it in even a low interest, say 3%, paying tax-deferred account we'd each end up with more money at the end than social security pays you. And the account would be ours. If you die under social security payment stops. With an individual account the balance can go to your survivors. Social security is nothing more than a legal Ponzi scheme.

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Bruce Bertsch 5 years ago

As usual your assumption is incorrect. the amount received from Social Security is directly related to your life expectancy. When originally created, a person aged 65 could on average expect to live about 16 months. Today, that number is closer to 16 years. Adjust the benefit age to 70 and eliminate all early retirement benefits and the system becomes sound again. Making it more needs based would also help. I can't imagine Warren Buffett waiting to see if his SS deposit has been made.

The assertion that all are going broke is also incorrect as they will ultimately be funded by us taxpayers via the US treasury. I am always astounded at the hubris of those who would dismantle social safety nets under the guise of we's all be better off. If that was truly the case, they would never have been needed.

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c_doc77 5 years ago

I think the term "fascist" is more applicable here. The trend we are seeing in government is a fusion of government and the corporate world to the extent that they are almost indistinguishable. We've had the Military Industrial Complex for years, but we are seeing the emergence of a Medical Industrial Complex at the same time the government has completely sold out to private and central banking interests.

Obamacare is essentially an insurance company bailout. Because the government intends to mandate that all citizens must have health insurance, they are guaranteeing profits to the industry. According to Dennis Kucinich, the insurance companies stand to gain 30 million new customers. And guess what? If you can't afford it, the taxpayer will take care of it. That sounds socialist on the surface, but on the whole it is a fascist proposal.

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Tammy Yergey 5 years ago

Liberty_One, there is corruption in government, just as there is corruption in private business. We are all human after all. However, the difference is that in government, at least we have a voice; we can vote in order to try to make changes. In private business, the only motivation is profit for the owners/stockholders, and disregard for everyone else. Employees, environment, ethics... those are just tools to help make you money or get in the way. There needs to be some governing body to protect the general public.

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SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years ago

Thanks, Joe. I had forgotten how many unnecessary and wasteful government agencies US taxpayers were funding.

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Richard Heckler 5 years ago

Free health care eh maybe? But NOT free health insurance no way jose'.

It amazes me how politicians and their worshippers consider health insurance paid with tax dollars aka MY money as free. Just goes to show you how little respect those against health insurance reform have for YOUR money and MY money. How can it be free when paid with taxpayers money?

All legislators protecting the most expensive medical insurance in the world are INCREASING YOUR COST of living.

How will HR 676 and ONLY HR 676 reduce the cost of medical insurance by billions?

• Eliminates high dollar medical insurance spending on what 2,000 health insurers add to the actual cost .

Plus HR 676 eliminates: • its bureaucracy which increases YOUR cost • eliminates profits that increase YOUR cost • Eliminates high corporate salaries that increase YOUR cost • Eliminates advertising that increases YOUR cost * Eliminates over charges that increase YOUR cost • Eliminates sales commissions that increase YOUR cost • Eliminates Shareholders which are the primary clients of for-profit insurance companies that which increase YOUR cost • Eliminates Special interest campaign dollars that increase YOUR cost • Eliminates Golden parachutes that increase YOUR cost

Go To: http://www.healthcare-now.org/hr-676/

All legislators protecting the most expensive medical insurance in the world are INCREASING YOUR COST of living.

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salad 5 years ago

TomShewmon (Tom Shewmon) says… "Joe, you're campy and sarcastic letter lays out a pretty good case for no more free healthcare."

God: "TomShewmon, I grant thee thy wish: no more health care!!!"

TomShewmon: "Thanks God! I knew you were really a Republican!"

God: "By the way, that thing on your back....it's not a mole."

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tbaker 5 years ago

Joe Douglas has a point. All you have to do is look for "Government Success" in the marketplace. Let me know when you find some.

The federal government has had how many years to get social security, medicare, and medicade right? Given the looting congress has done to the surpluses those programs once ran, they are now bankrupt ponzi schemes.

When the department of energy was created, how much foreign oil did we import?

When the department of education was created, what was the HS graduation rate as a percentage of the population?

When the department of health and human services was created, what was health care spending as a percentage of GDP or the federal budget?

Health care in the US doesn't need more and bigger government when more and bigger government is largely responsible for the mess we have now. What holds down costs is patients (people) behaving like consumers (vice beneficiaries of an entitlement), looking out for themselves in a competitive market. Health care providers fight to win business by keeping costs down and quality up. Why not have a free market where people can buy whatever kind of health insurance they want?

Why give a tax deduction to businesses for their health care costs, but not let me take one on my individual tax return? Why do we allow insurance companies to set up monopolies in states and stop us from buying policies from where ever we want? Why won't the government stop the casino law suites and reform malpractice laws so the insurance the docs have to carry doesn't cost so much?

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others." - Ayn Rand

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gogoplata 5 years ago

Now we're talking. Get rid of them all. I vote a hearty "yea" to that.

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Richard Heckler 5 years ago

Just think if Social Security had been placed in Wall Street many people probably would not be able to get their money because white collar criminals stole it.

Just think placing Social Security in Wall Street would cost taxpayers only $4,000,000,000,000(trillion) wow what a bargain.

Substantial reasons why Medicare Insurance for All should be the choice for all in America:

  • Makes the USA more attractive to NEW industry thus jobs thus new wealth for the USA.

*Eliminates Politicians as shareholders: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/12/AR2009061204075.html

*Eliminates Leading Cause Of Bankruptcy http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2005/bankruptcy_study.html#ixzz0IQKZLHHh&C

  • JOBS JOBS JOBS JOBS JOBS

  • Why use Medicare? It eliminates reinventing the wheel therefore saves a big bundle of money and time = efficient use of existing resources.

  • Medicare is in place therefore it is ready to roll which is convenient.

  • The USA needs to STOP being be the most expensive insurance/health care of the industrialized nations if americans want jobs back.

  • HR 676 Medicare for All insurance coverage is key to creating new wealth for america.

  • The most expensive health insurance in the world is not the answer for keeping business costs down and keeping our cost of living somewhat in check.

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puddleglum 5 years ago

an excellent letter, and an excellent point. here's a perfect example: http://www.theonion.com/content/node/32825

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tbaker 5 years ago

Dear Merrill:

Back in 1980 (before the government closed the loop hole) Galveston County Texas employees were given the option of NOT paying into social security. The workers debated and voted 3:1 in favor of opting out.

Check it out: http://www.ncpa.org/pub/ba514

So it's been 29 years. Hows it working out for them?

* Workers making $17,000 a year are expected to receive about 50 percent more per month than on Social Security.

* Workers making $26,000 a year will make almost double Social Security's return - $1,500 instead of $853.

* Workers making $51,000 a year will get $3,103 instead of $1,368.

* Workers making $75,000 or more will nearly triple Social Security - $4,540 instead of $1,645.

* Galveston County's survivorship benefits pay four times a worker's annual salary - a minimum of $75,000 to a maximum $215,000 - versus Social Security, which forces widows to wait until age 60 to qualify for benefits, or provides 75 percent of a worker's salary for school-age children.

In Galveston, if the worker dies before retirement, the survivors receive not only the full survivorship but get generous accidental death benefits, too. Galveston County's disability benefit also pays more: 60 percent of an individual's salary, better than Social Security's.

Two government studies of the Galveston Plan - by the Government Accountability Office and the Social Security Administration - claim that low-wage workers do better under Social Security. However, these studies assumed a low 4 percent return, which is the minimum rate of return on annuities guaranteed by the insurance companies. The actual returns have been substantially higher.

Thats just ONE example of how - when empowered to do so - nothing or no one - and most certainly not Fedzilla - takes care of individual Americans better than they can themselves.

When does common sense finally take hold in this debate? Think about it: Social Security (to name one program) looks nothing like it did when it was first started. The tax rate is 6 times what it was initially (12.4% instead of 2%). Taxes are collected on the first $108,000 of income, not the promised first $3,000 of income. The ponzi scheme will soon be paying out more than it takes in meaning reductions in benefits and increases in payments are inevitable. More broken promises.

Instead of making the government bigger and more powerful, our president and congress should, with the same energy, with equal enthusiasm, be working to make PEOPLE more able to take care of themselves.

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puddleglum 5 years ago

tbaker...I might not be getting the whole story here, but you are saying that galveston had a local-city-operated plan which worked much better than the federal social security plan? so socialism on a smaller scale is better? or how did the people get more?

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notajayhawk 5 years ago

number3of5 (Anonymous) says…

"social security forces you to save as the government saves it for you ( in a sense)."

The Supreme Court ruled a long time ago that the people that pay into Social Security have no ownership rights to that money. And the government doesn't save it for you, either - it taxes future wage earners to pay your benefits.


moderationman (Anonymous) says…

"The assertion that all are going broke is also incorrect as they will ultimately be funded by us taxpayers via the US treasury."

Until there are more people collecting than paying in. Or in times of recession/depression when tax dollars dry up. What then?

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tbaker 5 years ago

Dear Puddle - Galveston County employees (and a couple other Texas counties) were able to not to pay into Social Security, but instead set up their own retirement plan.

At the time, the law required them to pay in the same percentage they would have to pay into Social Security, and it required 100% participation.

I agree with your remark. The government shouldn't force anyone to pay into anything, but things being what they are, the county employees took care of themselves (vice waited for an entitlement from the government) and realized about twice the return on their investment.

You should check out the Railroad Retirement Act. Railroad employees got out from under Social Security a long time ago. They don't pay in either.

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