Las Vegas Sun

November 22, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Our country has a culture of caring

Another view?

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In his letter to the editor, “Healthy people are being punished,” Henry Schmid wrote, “To force people to buy a complete-coverage plan to subsidize insurance for low-income people is wrong ...”

I am forced to pay property tax to fund our free schools and other important city/county services. I am forced to pay sales tax to run important governmental services. I am forced to pay gasoline taxes so that we have good roads. I am forced to pay tax to help fund Social Security, Medicare and other important health care programs. I am forced to pay income tax to help run our country.

I am pleased that all citizens can benefit from all of these programs I am “forced” to support. In addition to taking care of ourselves, we all can participate in helping our hard-working, low-income brothers and sisters who deserve essential services, including education and health care, but might not be able to afford private schools and unduly expensive private medical care for example.

This caring is what makes this country great, isn’t it?

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  1. "This caring is what makes this country great, isn't it?"

    Damn right it is! In addition to caring, personal responsibility make this country great. To speak of healthy people as though they will always be that way is disingenuous. So-called healthy people can, for example, experience traffic accidents, sports injuries, and crime.

  2. The letter writer's economic logic is flawed. Payment of taxes is a macro good. It benefits the society as a whole. All who pay, and who don't pay, benefit as a group. Health insurance is a micro good. The person who pays for health care is the one who benefits. The more he/she pays, usually, the more are the individual benefits received from the coverage. Those who don't pay for coverage get minimal benefits provided to them. As it should be. The issue is that our society [read President] wants to expand the minimal health benefits to those who can't pay for them. That benefits the individuals who can't pay, not the society as a whole contrary to popular spin. The whole has to pay more but doesn't get the benefits. In fact, they have to pay more for the same or less benefits. The individual who can't pay gets the benefits at the expense of those who pay more who get less.

    Carmine D

  3. Yes, our country has a culture of caring...Selectively!

    The statement refers to the marketing of America. Not the true practice of helping. What is certain, our help either comes with a price tag, or help is based on several subjective decisions by those in control who can offer help.

    The marketing of America is great! The practice of being America is not so great.

  4. I disagree with that generality. There's a significant segment of our society that hold disadvantaged people in utter contempt. They've concluded that Jesus hates abortion, yet the moment a child born into poverty, he instantly becomes a "parasite" leeching benefits from hard-working taxpayers.

    This is the same crowd that would gladly pay twice what every other first world nation pays for healthcare rather than see people whom they deem unworthy get a "free ride" with a universal system. It doesn't matter that the evidence shows that economies fare better with universal healthcare or that several universal systems provide measurably better care -- the idea that someone else might derive a greater benefit is so appalling that they'll reject the notion out of hand.

  5. Emthree wrote:

    "There's a significant segment of our society that hold disadvantaged people in utter contempt."

    You are correct, your statement covers many areas of bias and prejudice with those in control who can offer help.

    Again, help is based on several subjective decisions by those in control who can offer help. Using the word "subjective" clearly states an unfairness in decisions. And when applied to the behavior of America leadership, we have a track record of rejecting anything that is not "us". Us... referring to an individual, a group...how one is taught, the community you live in, the leaders in the community. Your school. And most importantly, what is being taught in your home, your parents and who they are, their character.

    So, you are correct in offering the limited version. The wider version is deeper and more complex. Sadly, the wider version always brings us back to the special treatment of bias, prejudice and racism. The truth, this is the ugly group of one the corner stones in America history.

    Slowly we are diluting this part of America history. Make no mistake, selective actions and behaviors are being practice at a frenzy pace.

  6. When was the last time one of you whiners who complain about the 47% held a job paying $7.25 an hour? Walmart workers have a high rate of people in need of food stamps because of their low wages. Agreed, not all of our tax dollars is put to good use, but feeding and providing healthcare for the working poor is a dollar well spent, especially the children. We spend multi billions in corporate welfare, why aren't you complaining about that?

  7. Mr. Musser good letter, thank you.

  8. NO! What makes America great is freedom and liberty, and the right to that which one produces as the fruits of his or her own labor. That's what makes us great. A contribution to support a small goverment which is responsible for our common defense, and a reasonable safety net for the poor is what should be required. The current utter waste and abuse of the federal government is what is wrong with America. The left envisions the existence of an unlimited phantom source of income tax revenue to fund infinite government programs which the nation does not have the capacity to support. That is also wrong with America. We are sinking by our own weight in debt, and irresponsible Democrats and Republicans are both to blame. To ignore or be ignorant of this problem is a common societal failure. Facts and reality are stubborn things--we are going to be forced to come to terms with them.

  9. The following is a statement from the former Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew who turned Singapore into the economic power house that it is today:

    "Americans and European governments believed that they could always afford to support the poor and the needy: widows, orphans, the old and homeless, disadvantaged minorities, unwed mothers. Their sociologists expounded the theory that hardship and failure were due . . . to flaws in the economic system. So charity became 'entitlement,' and the stigma of living on charity disappeared." Welfare costs grew faster than the government's willingness to raise taxes. They "took the easy way out by borrowing to give higher benefits to the current generation of voters." The result: deficits and dangerously high public debt.

  10. All this caring is bankrupting the country. Our currency is imploding as O. spends and spends while relaxing and golfing. How about refocusing on SUSTAINABLE federal government that spends ONLY on enumerated powers in the Constitution? How about States and local government deal with assisting the unwed mothers, needy....SSI and SSDI already take care of those with medically confirmed incapacities. Let local authorities provide only what is essential and let local authorities deal with abuse and fraud. Abuse: any application for assistance (of any kind, non-profit, gov, church...) for more than 2 years consecutive/5 years lifetime in ANY jurisdiction.

  11. Everybody thinks they are healthy until they are not. You don't think you can get cancer just because you are young, eat right and exercise? Think again!

    I also think it's a little funny that houstonjac champions freedom and liberty and then quotes the PM of Singapore, a country w/ a healthcare mandate and subsidy for lower income citizens. (sound familiar?) A country where there is virtually no violent crime because there are so many CC cameras, it would be impossible to get away with anything. A country where they will put you to death for the possession of two firearms. A country where they allow the sands to build an enormous casino resort but the ministry of culture doesn't allow the gaming area to be in view of the non-gaming areas and no more than 5% of the square footage (and is beautiful as a result). Singapore is a successful country because the govt micromanages everything while denying freedom and liberty. You can't have it both ways.

  12. It is a diversion to ignore the statement by the former Prime Minister of Singapore as to the failures in America in the above post. He pin points with precision accuracy what the problems are in this country, and these should be read and understood by Americans everywhere. And these words are spoken by someone who admires the United States for the array of its traditional values and incentive system and for its propensity for innovation and perserverence.

  13. Emthree: I first read this online comment of yours when it was printed in the Sun. Thank you very much for concisely expressing my exact sentiments.