Printed letters, April 4, 2014
Mike Bambino’s display opinion piece published March 23 had both strange contentions and a plausible solution regarding America’s health care. High premiums, huge deductibles, medical-related bankruptcies, potential Medicare insolvency and millions literally dying because of no insurance was the scenario before Obamacare.
The latter is the disjointed, heavily bureaucratic approach to this scenario that kowtows to the unnecessary 20 percent middlemen cost of the for-profit insurance industry. We could have Medicare-for-All that would alleviate our Obamacare or a no-Obamacare monstrosity. M-for-A would even do as Bambino suggests: provide basic medical care to everybody.
But M-for-A would only be a governmental payment system. Physicians, hospitals, etc. would still be running their own private enterprises, and patients could still buy any additional care they could afford or see fit. Bambino’s suggestion of a value-added tax to fund this basic care seems better suited to our federal income tax mess, in my opinion.
How about paying for M-for-A via simple increases in the existing payroll/employment Medicare portion deductions, seniors’ Medicare parts A and B pay-ins, and contributions from unemployment and welfare checks? Everyone pays in; everybody gets basic care.
Get communities to adopt coordinated care/nonprofit systems to administer M-for-A (like our own Rocky Mountain HMO system) and health care efficiency goes up, costs get reduced and free enterprise stays in our health care delivery.
Cartoon wrongly portrays consumers as victims
Your editorial cartoon Tuesday was very misleading, to the point of being dishonest.
A Supreme Court decision to protect a company’s religious convictions would, in no way, enable that company to “prey” upon a consumer. It’s still the consumer’s choice.
Cut federal departments, regs, agencies to combat debt crisis
Our grandchildren and great-grandchildren are going to ask, “Grampy-Grammy, why did you do this to us?”
They’ll be talking about our nation’s debt that have we passed on to them. How could this happen to a great nation such as ours?
The answer lies with gutless politicians who care more about getting re-elected than about what is best for our country. How do we get out of the mess we are in? Not by taxing the rich (or the poor).
Two actions need to be taken. First, the size and cost of the federal government must be reduced. Departments that have proven to be of little benefit must be abolished. The departments of Education, Energy and Commerce fall into this category.
Also agencies such as the Federal Highway Administration, which spends billions passing federal gas tax money back to states from which it is collected, should go. Eliminate the federal gas tax and have the states collect the money.
Second, economic growth must be encouraged by eliminating many federal governmental regulations that are blocking the full development of our energy resources.
Despite what some shallow-sighted letter writers are saying about new coal mines, coal and natural gas offer us the opportunity to develop energy-exporting industries that would solve our problem with balance of payments to foreign countries and create thousands of good-paying jobs.
Dusty roads can be eliminated in many ways, and I have yet to see a train trailing a cloud of dust.
Approve the Keystone Pipeline. Voting true conservatives into political offices will restore the greatness of our country.
Silbernagel’s writing prowess, empathy merit recognition
With the retirement of Bob Silbernagel, several items are noteworthy.
In his capacity as editorial page editor, he has written many opinions that have been vehemently disagreed with.
To those who disagreed, don’t worry. Bob has suffered to have a number of friends (myself included) who frequently pointed out the error of his opinions. But with friends like that …
But Bob is what he professionally always wanted to be — a writer. His passion for his craft has required his attendance at many awards ceremonies. “Also-ran” awards have never made it to his mantel.
Bob’s extensive research in writing “Troubled Trails” finally gave some balance to the Meeker massacre and the plight of a proud people, the Utes.
On a personal level, for those who don’t know Bob, you would find the type of person that gives his jacket to his old dog on a chilly night in the mountains. His wife and kids bring that same level of empathy and warmth, as well.
I wish the Sentinel success in inspiring young writers to bring integrity and passion to their craft.
ALAN D. MOORE