Letters to the Editor

Opposed to Romney/Ryan health plan

Mr. Kent Lord (“Granny doesn’t have to fear Romney,” page A5, Aug. 17 Herald) provided every reason for a citizen to get behind a policy proposal presented by a Tea Party favorite that will renovate the failing Social Security and Medicare program.

At age 76, for the eldest segment, some tune up is certainly in order. I do wonder though if a voucher plan will work as well for a widow who has worked as a waitress in Schleicher County, Texas for the necessary years. Oh, sure, her husband did drive a fuel truck for many years before he died of the effects of prostate cancer, and before the oil company had company-subsidized health insurance. Which is the greater number in the U.S.: waitresses or airline pilots?

But it is not exactly the woman not yet a widow but aged 53 who will be affected by plans proposed by Mr. Ryan and by Mr. Romney. It will include a 25-year-old child removed from a parent’s policy, a free mammogram, a policy from one with a pre-existing condition, with the demise of the ACA currently in place.

But no one ever said that citizenship is easy.

Michael Hattrick

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Mr. Kent Lord’s letter was a condescending and demeaning “put-down” to all us “ordinary type folk” (who buy and read your newspaper)!

Mr. Lord, we are not just worried about what happens to today’s “Granny,” but to future Grannies and Gramps, to the poor, the disabled, the sick, and the out-of-work, to public education, to medicine and research, and to the infra-structure of our country.

We feel that a society where the tax base rests upon the poor and upon the shrinking middle class is a sick society, and we feel that those in the 1 percent owe the society that made them rich and powerful a certain amount of pay back or socially responsible behavior.

And, Mr. Ryan is rich enough for his mother not to need Medicare/Medicaid; and U.S. representatives, senators, cabinet members, and especially the president and vice president have excellent health coverage but it’s funny the rich never quibble over taking a “handout” like Medicare for their mothers.

Elizabeth Russell

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In response to last week’s letter regarding “Granny doesn’t have to fear Romney”:

No, today’s Granny doesn’t have to fear Romney. Republicans were smart enough to not propose changing the status quo for current Medicare recipients. They would have been hanged.

The voucher system proposed is for people who are now less than age 55 and will be grannies in 10 years when they become eligible for Medicare. It wouldn’t take effect until two years after Mr. Romney leaves office if he is elected this year.

Mr. Ryan’s “simple plan” has a lot of “woulds” and “shoulds” in it, which properly interpreted means that is what he would like to have happen. He prefers relying on the free market. In 2008, we saw what can happen when the free market reigns.

The proposed voucher system for prospective seniors, when they become eligible in 10 years, shifts the burden of health care to them. By the Republican plan, the government will pay the senior citizen (starting in 10 years) a fixed amount per year; if his or her health care costs more than the fixed amount, he or she pays the balance.

Government regulations are usually generated because businesses overstep fair or ethical practice. I would trust government (like a single-payer program) before I would trust for-profit insurance companies to be fair. Norway, Switzerland, Taiwan, have great government single-payer health care systems.

The real question is: Why would seniors of today, who enjoy the guaranteed benefits of their Medicare/Medicaid/Social Security, vote for a party or politician who is bent on depriving the seniors of tomorrow and their children of the same security today’s seniors enjoy?

The most noble goal a government can have is to protect its citizens, especially those who, for whatever reason cannot care for themselves in elder years, from the ravages of ill health and poverty, and provide a measure of dignity for all. If that means raising taxes on the wealthy, and even on the well-to-do, to care for the less fortunate, I’m for it.

Give the Affordable Care Act a chance to work. Then tweak it if necessary.

D. Rand Hillier


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