Letters to the Editor: Nov. 1, 2013

Fifty percent of US has policy myopia

America today is being ravaged by an epidemic of myopia. Better known as nearsightedness, recent polls show that nearly 50 percent of our population is affected. Myopia is a vision condition in which close objects are seen clearly, but objects farther away appear blurred. Recent letters in the Journal supporting Obamacare and bashing the Tea Party and Republicans are examples of myopia.

Victims of myopia have no trouble accepting the false promises of Obama and Democrats that they will be able to keep their current insurance and insurance will be cheaper but they have problems seeing the reality that as many as 16 million Americans will lose their current insurance and the available plans will be 30, 40 or 50 percent more expensive. The fact that Obamacare robs them of their freedom of choice over their medical care is lost in the distance somewhere.

Victims of myopia support continuing the current social programs without change when these same programs are generating warnings from most fiscal experts that we are on an “unsustainable path.” This train we all are on is going to run out of track and wreck if something is not done soon but myopia blinds people to that fact. The current administration has increased our total public debt by 60 percent in five years to $17 trillion and that debt is increasing by nearly $1 trillion each year. Unfunded liabilities increase this debt to $205 trillion – 12 times the size of the U. S. economy. We have a record of over 90 million American workers unemployed and dependent on government support. An astounding 49.2 percent of Americans are receiving some form of support from the government. If your myopia is keeping you from seeing that this can not continue you need an immediate appointment with your optometrist.

I was raised on the principle that we should leave this world a better place for our children. Leaving them buried under the debt we have accumulated due to our excesses and limited future opportunities that we have enjoyed is a sin that our generation will have to answer for. If myopia is obscuring your distant vision, you need to get it treated before bankruptcy brings an abrupt end to the benefits you cherish and leaves your children in poverty.

Raymond Settle

Blue Mountain

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    Good analogy, applied to the wrong side of this political equation. Before Medicare, there was no
    choice for most of America when it came to healthcare. If you didn’t have the money in your mattress, you either put your family in debt, oftentimes beyond your own death, or you
    didn’t get the treatment. The idea of Medicare is you pay a little from your paycheck throughout your working years for the security of at least having something to fall back on when you get
    old. If you want extra and can afford it, you purchase private insurance on your own.
    With all its faults, I would argue that there are a majority of people who are quite happy they have this security. The problem with Medicare: you don’t get any of the benefit until you qualify for it toward the end of life, oftentimes after you realize you’ve had a preventable or treatable condition
    before your qualified.

    The AHCA is meant to address this disparity. Too often, until we reach middle age, we
    really don’t monitor our health. Health conditions most frequently develop over time: and it’s far more expensive to treat advanced, chronic disease than when caught early or prevented entirely. If you work, no matter what age, you already pay Medicare – why not pay a little more and actually get to use it throughout your life. That’s the ‘far-sighted’ perspective of those of us who support this

    This debt discussion does not belong solely to the Right: we on the Left are as acutely aware of the pitfalls of continuing down the same path without addressing our problems incrementally now. Obamacare will not fix the problem but using it as a framework around which we can begin to
    incrementally address these issues is at the very least a start. It doesn’t matter which side of the aisle you sit upon, you can’t deny that Obamacare at the very least has us talking about
    it – – a lot.

    Talking is cheap, easy, and failsafe. Doing something has costs, is often very difficult, and quite often you fail a lot until you get it right. Those of us on the Left expected that from the AHCA; we didn’t support the legislation blindly and we knew we’d lose political capital along the way. We knew there would be failures – granted maybe not a screwed up website out of the box, but it happens. That’s the first failure that needs fixing. The AHCA didn’t come out of Congress like we on the Left wanted it: there were compromises made to the Right (compromises the Right refuses to take ownership of). We’re still waiting for the Right to be willing to fail with us, help us, and eventually win a solution by incrementally working on the debt problem – starting with healthcare. Aren’t you ready for politics to be boring again?