COMMUNITY COMMENTARY:

I congratulate and thank you and your reporter Zain Shauk for your July 25 front-page article “Group protests health-care plan.” In the present-day climate of media bias, it was both refreshing and unusual to see a story free of partisanship.

The quiet, respectful demeanor of the protesters did in no way demonstrate the disgust, disdain and anger felt by taxpayers at the cavalier, dismissive behavior of our paid “public servants” in Washington and the Obama administration they serve.

Our senators and representatives no longer represent us. They are instead addicted to power, perks and privilege. Their relationships, built over unlimited terms in Washington, are not dedicated to “we the people,” but to special-interest groups — lobbyists, unions and, in fact, any major contributor to their reelection campaigns.

How do we interpret the unwillingness of our congressional representation to read and understand the legislation they rush into law? Is this perhaps the response of a “plutocracy” to laws they see as applying only to a “proletariat?”

Congress has its own very special health care, which runs for life. Congress is not proposing now, nor will it in the future, to abandon this platinum plan for any government option. They were willing to plunder and pillage our Social Security because it does not affect them.

Upon retirement, congressional representatives and senators are favored with a pension for life, which includes any pay raise subsequent to their retirement. It is time to term these people out. If the president must be content with two terms, then so should Congress. It is also time to revise their pay grades and pension plans, which are disproportionate to their service.

The current health-care bill, the stimulus, omnibus and cap and trade bills are all imbued with an “urgency of passage” that appears designed to deny debate and discourage transparency.

The health-care bill does not provide for tort reform, curtailment of medical malpractice, coverage portability from job to job, or promotion of competition by allowing consumers to purchase coverage from companies across state lines, as is the case with auto insurance. There are also no anti-fraud contingencies, no provision for bundling purchasing between small businesses or individuals thus allowing for lower premiums.

There are many facets to real reform not addressed here. This bill is primarily social engineering and a way in which big government can reach even further into our lives, exercising even more control.

This bill expands access without cost containment, creates devastating debt and adds to a deficit already swollen from the previous (over) spending bills rushed through Congress with no vetting, transparency and certainly no understanding by those so very willing and quick to sign.

This bill contains language that requires medical schools to give preference to minority and under privileged students. What kind of health-care reform and benefit does this provide to the taxpayer?

This bill most resembles the models currently operating in Massachusetts, Canada and the United Kingdom, which result in long wait times to see a doctor, diminished care and rationing.

If the government option remains a factor in this bill, it will strangle the private system and ultimately lead to a “single payer” plan into which we will be herded, with no viable alternative.

We shall become supplicants with nowhere to turn when claims for treatment or procedures are denied due to the intervention of a government bureaucrat in Washington whose decisions are made upon a cost-efficiency code predicated upon our “individual value” determined by age, height-weight appropriateness, personal habits, family and personal health history and remaining years of productivity!

We demand real reform, not rhetoric, smoke and mirrors and a mad rush to legislation.

We demand representation for taxation as provided in our Constitution.


?PATRICIA HARRIS is a Glendale resident.

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