Letters, Jan. 7, 2014

ACA latest example

of entitlement failure

Re: Carmichael letter, Press, Jan. 4

Letter writer Carl Carmichael asks the rhetorical question, “Whatever happened to the American spirit where we all worked to make things happen?” In answer, that spirit still exists and continues to make America the greatest nation on the earth. However, Mr. Carmichael confuses the spirit of the American people versus the government’s redistribution of wealth programs, such as taxation.

The Medicaid program is just another Democrat/Socialist scheme to redistribute wealth across America. Most of us do not want bigger government or the government (at any level) in our pockets and lives. The American people are the most generous people on the face of the earth. Any of us would not hesitate to help a neighbor that is experiencing a difficult period in their lives, such as a loss of job, inability to work due to injury, or other temporary setback to get them back on their feet.

But that is not the problem; the problem is that too many Americans have lost the work ethic that has been the signature of America’s success over the last 200 years. Dependence upon government “entitlement” programs has become a way of life for many, even now into the third and fourth generations of Americans. If a person chooses not to work, that is their choice, just don’t ask the rest of us to support you. Our country has the best education programs, even right here in Wyoming and Sheridan. If Americans feel stuck in a low paying job, shouldn’t they consider returning to school to get a higher education; or enroll in a trade school to learn skills? Both are available locally and across Wyoming. As a young man nearly 50 years ago, I chose to pursue a higher education, as well as gain work experience in the U.S. Army. Why should I now be penalized because others choose to rely on others to support them?

Mr. Carmichael’s assertion that if Wyoming refuses federal money to facilitate the state’s expansion of Medicaid — that it will cost the state an unbelievable greater amount of money to pay for the increase in people accessing emergency care — is refuted in a recent study conducted by Harvard University and published in the Journal of Science. This report clearly showed emergency room visits actually increased when Oregon expanded its Medicaid program. Mr. Carmichael writes how the director of Wyoming’s Department of Health believes that expansion of Medicaid in Wyoming is in the best interests of the citizens of Wyoming. Just the use of the word ‘believes’ ascribes such a statement by the director to be his/her personal opinion without any factual evidence that supports such a claim. I find it difficult anymore to believe any bureaucrat that speaks in their department or government’s interest.

The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is not a challenge. Rather, it is a catastrophe and pox upon the American people and our society, our Constitutional rights, and a heavy intrusion of the government into our private affairs, such as personal health care. Because it does not work is not because we don’t view it as a challenge. It is because the Democrats in Congress and President Obama in the White House forced it upon the American people by suspending the rules of Congress and passing/signing it without the required timeframe for reading the proposed act, discussing the proposed act, and debating it on the floors of the Senate and House of Representatives before voting on the proposed legislation. One can only wonder that if the rules of Congress had been followed, perhaps we would have had a better health care act that does not force Americans to purchase a product not of their choosing. Polls show the majority of Americans overwhelmingly do not want Obamacare.

Mr. Carmichael’s assertion that Gov. Matt Mead’s position on Medicaid expansion is politically biased is false. Gov. Mead was elected by the majority of Wyoming residents to preserve our conservative values and strong work ethic and to exercise fiscal responsibility.

 

George Walker

Sheridan

 

 

ACA is disaster;

“settled law” tumult

Re: Carmichael letter, Press, Jan. 4

 

Letter writer Carl Carmichael asks, “Whatever happened to the American spirit where we all worked together to make things happen…?” Indeed. Well, it seems to me that President Barack Obama happened.

It took America 44 months during WWII to build a military machine and defeat the powerful military threats of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan. It took the Obama Administration almost that long to build a website for the ACA (Obamacare) which has been, to date, a disaster.

Mr. Carmichael wonders what could be if only “… our legislators worked together to make the ACA a successful endeavor.” We need only look to history to remind us that the Republicans in the House and Senate suggested several ideas related to health care reform back in 2009, only to have them all rejected out of hand and the ACA passed using sleights of hand and legislative shenanigans such as the “Cornhusker Kickback” and the “Louisiana Purchase.” It was then rammed through Congress on a straight, Democrat-only party line basis. Is this what Mr. Carmichael means by “working together?”

We were then treated to a lengthy plea for Wyoming to accept the beneficent federal government offer of funds to the states to “expand” their Medicaid coverage. As Medicare trustee Charles Blahous has explained, it simply isn’t reasonable to count on these promised federal funds since, given the financial bind the federal government is in, states would accept a huge risk of the feds shifting additional costs to the states. Blahous has also stated that “from a practical perspective, it is quite unlikely that the federal government will make the full amount of Medicaid payments now scheduled under law.”

Mr. Carmichael cited the oft-used Democrat mantra that the ACA is “settled law” and thus we should be able to depend on the feds for their commitments to the states on Medicaid. Really? Obamacare is so “settled” that its creator himself, with absolutely no constitutional authority whatsoever, has already changed numerous aspects as he (and he alone) deemed necessary. So, why would he hesitate to decrease federal subsidies to the states for Medicaid expansion, citing financial exigencies, or whatever might suit his fancy later?

Finally, I fully understand why several state governors balk at this “offer.” After all, it was made as part of a program which guaranteed that if people liked their policy or their doctor, they would be able to keep them — period. How well has that worked out?

 

Charles Cole

Sheridan

 

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: The word limit on both letters was waived.

 


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