Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

January 27, 2013

Better to debate Medicare issue than merely to dismiss it

In George Michael’s column on Jan. 18 (“What if the ‘promise’ was a lie?) he claims that an article on Medicare by David Ellott from a “left leaning” organization affirms the program, but fails to reveal its real cost and who pays for it.

Had Michael not revealed his underlying distaste for the “bleeding hearts” that helped create Medicare, he might have succeeded in demonstrating his own objectivity.

I have benefitted greatly from Medicare over the past few years. The costs from my hospitalizations have far exceeded what I paid into the program. Sorry about that.

So am I sorry about the huge costs of our recent wars abroad and a number of other federal programs (including the salaries and Cadillac health care and pension benefits to congressmen).

National changes are sorely needed if we are really serious about drastically reducing our federal deficit.

Regarding a rational debate about the improvement of Medicare, one might include HR 676 as a plan to explore, alongside Rep. Paul Ryan’s proposal — Michael’s preference.

Dr. Wayne Spiggle, a well-informed health care activist, has described HR 676 as a plan that would save $300 billion yearly, cover all citizens, eliminate deductibles, cover dental, nursing home care and pharmaceuticals.

In his judgment it would “take control of health care delivery out of the hands of insurance companies and drug manufacturers.” Spiggle recommends the web site of Physicians for a National Health Policy for more information.

In all likelihood Michael would vigorously oppose it as I would likely oppose Ryan’s alternative plan, based on his track record of opposition to federally-subsidized health care programs which I support.

But there should be room for honest debate about what is good for the country without using the kind of dismissive language Pastor Michael employs.

John Wiseman

Cumberland

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • If we don’t sell it to them, somebody else will

    The front page article on coal exports by AP writer Dina Cappiello is one of the most asinine and biased “news” articles I’ve read (“Not in my backyard: U.S. sending dirty coal abroad,” July 29 Times-News, Page 1A).

    July 30, 2014

  • Research cost of watershed plan before implementing it

    July 30, 2014

  • ‘Prayers in the Park’ event slated Aug. 18 in Johnstown

    July 30, 2014

  • Not a villain Not a villain

    Time was that we looked for heroes. Heroes of the make-believe variety have sold a lot of comic books. We also had real-life heroes like Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy, whose deaths the whole nation mourned.
    These days, we seem to be more interested in looking for villains. “Vote for me because I’m the good guy” has taken a back seat to “Don’t vote for him, because he’s the bad guy.”

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Other groups get county funds, so should CHCO

    At a recent county commissioner meeting, members of the Cumberland Historic Cemetery Organization, Maryland Delegate LeRoy Myers Jr. and Pastor Alfred Deas of the Metropolitan A.M.E. Church, Cumberland attended to request from the commissioners $5 dollars of marriage license money be permanently allocated to the CHCO (“Cemetery group renews funding request,” July 25 Times-News, Page 1A).

    July 29, 2014

  • No public funding for extremist organization

    Once again, the Cumberland Historic Cemetery Organization has asked the Allegany County commissioners for public funding (“Cemetery group renews funding request,” July 25 Times-News, Page 1A).

    July 29, 2014

  • About time About time

    Although many Cumberland streets are in need of repair and improvements, the decision by city and county officials to address Greene Street is a good one.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Why are fair officials targeting firefighters?

    The Allegany County Fair has been known for its Demolition Derby for a long time. Several years back the operation of the derby was awarded to the local Cresaptown Volunteer Fire Department.

    July 28, 2014

  • Here’s a time when W.Va. law took precedence over Md. law

     There may be an applicable precedent concerning any assumption that the Potomac Highlands Airport Authority (PHAA) can choose to ignore West Virginia territorial state laws.

    July 28, 2014

  • Citizens don’t want Terrapin Run; remove it from the plan

    July 28, 2014