Health care reform
Small business could see a benefit
I was a lifelong Republican who changed parties to one that at least is trying to bring some health care reform to our country. My family is one that left corporate America and opened a small business only to have me go back to work for a corporation when it offered to pay for my health insurance.
The cost of a health care plan is keeping so many capable people in large companies who could be opening small businesses. These people are prevented from retiring and letting someone else at a different point in their life financially have their job.
The opponents of health care reform point to Canada as what can happen when the government gets involved, but everyone I've spoken to who has firsthand knowledge of the Canadian system is very happy with their system.
It is time for America to wake up and realize that it is a right to have basic health care and understand how many jobs that would create by allowing more boomers to pass the torch to the next generation. They then can take the talents they spent a lifetime obtaining and pour it into a small business that can actually create a few jobs.
Richard Tew, Palm Harbor
Go back and do it right
The letter writer (Let's move forward, March 12) on health care reform says, "President Barack Obama wasted a good year trying to build bridges." Is that what it's called when there are closed-door sessions where Republicans are not allowed?
Then the letter writer states, "The Democrats have the votes: Just do it and get it over with." Does he honestly believe if the Democrats had the votes that they would have to bribe senators to go along? Does he believe that if they had the votes they would need the Republicans?
The benefits of this bill don't go into effect until 2014. Let's step back, create a bill that will actually make a difference, pass it before 2014, and have the benefits kick in right away.
Ronald Melone, Clearwater
Most Americans have health insurance, happy with it | March 12, PolitiFact
To be great, we need to have health care reform
George Will states that 85 percent of Americans had health care before the debate on it started. He also states that 95 percent were happy with it.
I am one of those who has a health care plan that I am very happy with. The plan is expensive, but I have excellent coverage, which fortunately I am able to afford.
I wonder what percentage of those happy with their health care are part of the 58 percent who are against health care reform. I also wonder what percentage of the 30 million who have no health care were among those against health care reform. I imagine very few.
Although I am completely happy with the plan I am in, it would be very selfish on my part to be against health care reform that would provide coverage to the 30 million who have no coverage at all.
It is a sad legacy that we are the only industrialized nation without health coverage for all of its citizens. If some day we do provide health care coverage for all of our citizens then we can call ourselves the greatest nation in the world. Until then, we aren't.
Dan Ward, Zephyrhills
How you spin it
Let me see if I understand the debate over health care.
If I'm a Republican who favors limiting people's health care because we can't afford to cover everyone, then I'm advocating fiscal responsibility.
If I'm a Democrat who favors limiting people's health care because we can't afford to cover everyone, then I'm advocating death panels.
Have I got that right?
Todd Hemphill, St. Petersburg
Adjust Social Security to reality | March 11, commentary
A different reality
I read with great interest the article regarding Social Security. While the authors may be scholars, I seriously doubt they understand the reality many Americans face living on Social Security and Medicare.
I'm quite sure they don't have a mother in very poor health, living on $1,000 a month. My mother manages to parse out her welfare level of income to pay for a supplemental insurance policy, insurance for her mobile home (which she owns), and continue to pay the ever-increasing taxes and dues to live in her community.
If the authors did understand reality, they wouldn't worry about the price tag of $14 billion to give a little extra to our elderly American population. Perhaps, instead of telling us how great our benefits are they should fight for more money with their other government counterparts that literally give away many billions of dollars to other countries, illegal aliens and countless other causes.
We need to take care of our own first and make sure our elderly Americans live their retired years with dignity and respect.
Kathy Edwards, Indian Rocks Beach
Mom faults hit-run driver | March 10, story
Don't send wrong message
"A 20-year-old woman might avoid charges that she fled the scene of a fatal hit-and-run accident because she returned an hour later … "
Might the outcome for the victim have been different if Amanda Bentz had stopped and called for emergency help immediately instead of running home? If no charges are brought against this driver, what kind of message does this send? She needs to take responsibility for her actions. Even if the investigation shows the victim was at fault, running away and leaving someone incapacitated is not the answer.
Dawn Rinaldi, Tampa
A distorted view | March 11, letter
The letter writer says that had David Brooks (The Walmart Hippies, March 9) done his research he would know that "most people in the Tea Party movement are just trying to get the country and the government back to the vision of the original framers of the U.S. Constitution."
As a woman, is she not aware that the vision of the original framers explicitly excluded women (and black Americans) from enjoying the liberties outlined in the Constitution, and the highest levels of the government supported that exclusion?
This is the kind of ignorance that organizers of movements such as the Tea Party count on to succeed with their hidden agendas. The problem in America today is that people are so ready to jump on the bandwagon and follow whatever is popular for the moment instead of educating themselves on the issues (and the history behind those issues), and then drawing their own conclusions.
Bridget McCoy, St. Petersburg