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Mon, Sept. 16

Letter: Money and politics leave us high and dry

In response to Richard A. Starker Sr.'s letter to the editor that appeared March 30: He really hit the nail on the head.

What can we expect when we have a bunch of elected officials in Washington who don't give a rat's behind about the American people? Between the medical profession, the drug companies, and the oil companies, we are all going to end up in the poor house. Our elected officials in Washington are our representatives and are supposed to go to bat for us. They aren't doing that. They just sit in their plush offices and take their six-figure salaries and do nothing for us. If they cared about the American people, they would be trying to do something about the high costs of medical care, medications and gasoline.

A few weeks ago I wrote a letter to Sen. Jon Kyl about these issues. I told him how President Bush mentioned in a speech that "it was a sad thing in this country when a person has to decide between having food on the table or having their medication." Nothing has ever been done. There are millions of people in this country that don't have health care insurance. They simply can't afford it. Even employers are getting away from providing health care insurance for their employees because it is getting too expensive. Just recently, I heard on the CBS Evening News that Medicare will be broke by the year 2019. That is 11 years away. That should be a red flag to our elected officials to get with the top brass in the American Medical Association and try to have the medical profession lower their prices. They also need to do the same thing with the drug companies.

In my letter to Kyl, I told him what we need in this country is a national health care system that would cover health care and prescription drugs. I also suggested implementing a 5 percent federal sales tax. Everyone pays it. There is no way a person can cheat on it. With our present system everybody is faced with enormous insurance premiums. A lot of people are paying $500 a month for insurance. That is a big chunk out of a person's budget. The insurance companies don't pay it all. The way it is now the insurance companies say what they will cover, and if a certain procedure is too expensive they won't cover it. I know of two incidents where a person died because the insurance companies wouldn't pay for a procedure. With the present system, a lot of people don't have access to good quality health care and prescription drugs. There are a lot of people in this country who go to Mexico or Canada to get drugs. Some of our elected officials in Washington have tried to put a stop to that. That shows whose side they are on. With my suggestion, everyone in this country would have access to good quality health care or prescription drugs. Guess what? I haven't heard from Kyl. I also told him that if people didn't have to spend so much money on health care and drugs, they would have more money to spend. That sure would help the economy in our country.

Now let's talk about the high price of gas and diesel fuel, and also jet fuel. Again, our elected officials in Washington aren't doing anything. There are three industries that could do something about it - the trucking, airline and railroad industries, all three of which use a lot of fuel. A few days ago I heard on the CBS Evening News that the high price of fuel is really putting a crimp in people's lives. They talked to a trucker and he said that there are a lot of truckers considering parking their rigs. They simply can't afford the fuel prices. Katie Couric also mentioned that the airlines were having to pay $3.48 a gallon for jet fuel. No wonder they have to raise ticket prices. If the trucking industry would park their rigs for a few days and if the airlines wouldn't fly for one day and the railroads stop for one day you would see the price of fuel come down in a heartbeat. There is no reason that we need to be paying the price for gas that we are paying now. With the oil companies, it is pure and simple greed.

There are a lot of people who make their living in the tourism industry. They are going to feel it this summer because a lot of people are going to forego their vacation trips or cut them short. That is a shame. Everyone is suffering because of the greediness of the oil companies. I would say that the oil company executives don't know the Lord. They can't worship the Lord and money. They have to make a choice. I guess that they chose to worship money. In First Timothy, chapter 6, verse 10, it says: "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."

Ronney L. Case

Golden Valley

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