Affordable health coverage is fundamental to joy and prosperity in the United States. It is arguably one of the basic human rights. When insurance companies lobby lawmakers to keep their outrageous premiums the standard, people have to choose between health care and necessities like food and shelter. Naturally, health care is neglected. This causes a lack of preventative care and an abundance of emergency care, which is more expensive to provide.
This is a vicious cycle spinning those who cannot afford health care deeper and deeper into debt when care is what is really needed. This is a national problem that the government is finally taking responsibility for. The fact that it’s an expensive problem to fix does not mean we should allow it to spin out of control. When people who cannot afford ER visits go for treatment regardless, hospitals, taxpayers and insurance companies foot the bill eventually. Because we all subsidize healthcare in this way, why not reform the industry?
Some argue that out national debt is already too large to be taking on large projects like reforming health care. The tremendous national deficit that we have now was caused by the Bush administration’s tax cuts and military spending. Both of these problems are being addressed by Obama’s legislation, and soon there will be more cash flow available because we are not spending $300 to $400 million a day on war. Debt is not a determining factor in deciding how to fix health care. The health of the people is too important.
Lindsay Black, Sonora
Impeach Obama: Thank you to our nation of sheeple, which has flocked to the man they refer to as the “Messiah.” I feel good to say I didn’t vote for him.
Do you sheeple realize our stock market has fallen 1,000 points since he got into office? Do you sheeple realize he is passing a $3 trillion budget that my children and others’ will spend the the rest of their lives paying for?
Earmarks and pork: $7.7 billion is going to pet projects, one, for instance, is to investigate and try to get rid of the smell of swine manure in Iowa.
We have people in our nation starving and losing their homes and having to give up their children and pets because they can’t feed them.
You all need to wake up and pull the wool away from your eyes and realize this country is going down the tubes and we are sinking into a depression. Not to mention the stem cell research order Mr. Obama has signed. Whatever happened to family values? How about we abort Obama, not the unborn?
Suzanne Taylor, Columbia
When I first came to Tuolumne County 29 years ago there were many HMOs, the county hospital and Sonora Community Hospital. Now there is just Sonora Regional Medical Center and many private doctors that have offices near the center. Somehow I get the feeling that with as many more people that have moved into the area there should have been room for Tuolumne General Hospital to thrive (as Kaiser Permanente would say).
From what I can see, it was not the lack of patients that used the county hospital, but the fact that there was a lack of proper billing that helped cause the closure. In Tuolumne County, the need for more medical facilities has increased, not decreased. Why do you think Sonora Regional spent all the money in our area if there was not a profit to be made? They are not stupid.
Just because many county hospitals closed in California did not mean that ours could not have remained open. After 125 years of taking care of our residents, it could have been kept open. There were many people interested in keeping it open, as evidenced by the many meetings that protested the closure.
All we kept hearing is how much money it cost the county. The residents who pay taxes are the county. Without them, there would be no Tuolumne County. We should have a voice and be heard.
Lillian Carson, Groveland
In your Feb. 26 Calaveras Edition, I read with interest your article titled “Duo ready to sing at library fundraiser.”
It reported that Russ Thomas and Gary Tofanelli, both Calaveras County Supervisors, will be singing “To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before,” impersonating Julio Iglesias and Willie Nelson. It is bound to be entertaining. Charles Milazzo and John Pratt lip-synched the same Julio-and-Willie tune in the first-ever Calaveras Follies five years ago and brought the audience to its feet.
I must admit that getting Russ Thomas — who can really sing — and Gary Tofanelli to actually perform is quite an accomplishment. Both the Calaveras County Library and the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program are worthy recipients of such artistic efforts.
Readers may be interested to know that Gary Tofanelli may also be performing in the 2009 Calaveras Follies, set for April 18, but lip-synching instead of actually singing. (I will let the audience decide which approach is best for Gary).
I applaud both county supervisors for carving out time in their busy schedules to participate in such fundraising shows. They demonstrate the true spirit of community leadership in going so far beyond their job descriptions.
Marian Coahran, San Andreas
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Weekly Arts and entertainment guide for Calaveras and Tuolumne counties