Printed letters, November 24, 2013

Thursday’s editorial suggesting the Grand Junction airport manager should be suspended caught my attention for a different reason. Far down the column is the admission that an investigation and audit should have occurred much sooner. It states, “...while a few people involved with the airport claimed there were serious problems, most observers, this newspaper included, didn’t see evidence of anything more than significant policy differences.”

Please pardon my disbelief. The “few people” mentioned were few in number compared to the population of the area but were a high percentage of affected airport tenants. City hall has seldom seen a more packed house than the night airport users complained to councilors about what was taking place. Many articles and letters appeared in the Sentinel regarding these complaints, which were also registered with the county commissioners, airport commissioners, a U.S. congressman, TSA, FAA and at least two TV stations. Does one have to self-immolate at 6th and Main with a gasoline can to draw attention to what was happening?

While no one knows what triggered the FBI search, the warning signs of an out-of-control organization were there for all to see. There was a systemic failure of elected and appointed officials, as well as the media, to question and look. There should be some serious local introspection regarding why local leaders failed to do their duty. 

BILL MARVEL

Grand Junction

Patching up Humpty Dumpty 
a futile fix for Obamacare

I have written a number of letters in the past that pointed out some of the flaws in Obamacare. I said early on that it was deceptive for the president to say if you like your insurance policy you can keep it. Same goes for keeping your doctor, and you can add to that keeping your hospital. The president said this was all going to be done without adding to our debt. Now we are seeing the resulting damage to our health care system. We haven’t begun to see the impact of the high costs of this new entitlement.

Where do we go from here? It’s impossible to put Humpty Dumpty back together again, but who wants to? Many Democrats will want to double down and go 100 percent single payer. I can’t imagine people wanting more government control after seeing this debacle.

Republicans can begin by returning control to patients and their doctors. Providing help to those who are uninsurable can be done directly without “stealing” from the young and healthy. Mandates can’t compete with freedom. Portability of insurance when you change jobs and malpractice reform are just two examples of alternative affordable solutions.

The government needs to get out of the way of our health care system that represents 17 percent of our economy. The rule should be do no harm. This is a wake-up call for those who think big government is the solution.

DAVID A. KEARSLEY

Mesa

County made smart move
in supporting riverfront trail

It’s understandable that the county commissioners want to scrutinize every budget item considering the reduction in revenue for the 2014 budget. They made the right fiscal decision to approve the county’s share of matching funds to finish the third phase of the Colorado Riverfront Trail.

Those matching funds, a fraction of the actual cost, were leveraged along with other local municipalities, matching funds to secure a $4.3 million grant funded through lottery ticket sales. Commissioner Acquafresca called it a “darn good deal.” The cost of completing this section will never be cheaper than it is right now.

The riverfront concept, which began decades ago by James Robb and other community leaders, has progressed through both good and bad economies, due to the ongoing efforts of community leaders and participating landowners. There is no better example of a successful community partnership in our valley today. This community partnership and legacy has continued to prove itself worthy of our time and resources.

Along with many others in our valley, I also urge the county commissioners to continue to fund the Colorado Riverfront Commission part-time position.

DAVE KARISNY

Fruita

San Diego vet appreciates
stranger’s thoughtful act

Many thanks to the gentleman who “paid it forward” at the Denny’s in Clifton Nov. 17. My brothers and I were having lunch when he stopped at our table and asked if we were veterans.

All three of us were Navy veterans, and when we said “Yes,” he slipped a $20 on to the table. He left so quickly that we didn’t have a chance to thank him appropriately, but thanks again for recognizing our service, and we will continue the policy.

G.R. MORSE

San Diego



COMMENTS

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I’m wondering if Mr. Kearsley has set up an account on Connectforhealthco.com and shopped what’s available on the exchange.

One doesn’t need to buy anything to do that.

And if he has done that and tells us so, he might come across differently than someone simply talking out of his behind.

Dave Kearsley’s latest offering – “Patching up Humpty Dumpty a futile fix for Obamacare” – takes credit when none is due.

Nothing in the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) required insurers to cancel any policies in existence on March 23, 2010.  The appearance of “deception” arose because some health insurers “baited and switched” insureds from “grandfathered” into “non-grandfathered” policies (rather than modifying them to retain “grandfathered” status or upgrading them to comply with the ACA)—and continued issuing new non-compliant policies (with no caveats) knowing they would be cancelled as of January 1, 2014.

President Obama has apologized for the ACA’s failure to anticipate and prohibit such deceptive business practices and/or to “mandate” complete disclosure by those insurers.

Nothing in the ACA required anyone to change doctors, but neither prohibited doctors from dying, retiring, or limiting their practices, nor required insurers to maintain existing “preferred provider” networks.

The American Hospital Association supports the ACA – because it offers more prompt and adequate compensation for rendering indigent care.  However, in 25 Republican-controlled states which reject Medicaid expansion, hospitals may be forced to close emergency rooms.

In sum, 80% of Americans’ premiums were largely “unaffected” by the ACA, some 15% gained access to affordable health care for the first time, and only 1.3% may pay more for equal or better coverage. 

Moreover, the ACA has (as President Obama “promised”) reduced long-term cost (and thus “debt”) projections by some $147 billion—reducing health care spending growth and price inflation to the lowest rates in 50 years.

Parroting Republicans’ bogus “alternatives” to the ACA, Kearsley’s cherished “freedom” would revert to the “pre-existing condition” of double-digit annual premium increases, arbitrary denial and/or cancellation of coverage by for-profit “death panels”, and leave 40+ million Americans without affordable access to health care.

Good luck with that, Humpty!

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