Many Americans love government-run "socialized" medicine.
If you don't believe me, try asking any senior to opt out of Medicare - a health-care program run by the government - and ask them to replace it with an annual tax-free allowance of $5,000 so they can shop for health insurance in the private marketplace. (Sen. John McCain and other Republicans are fond of suggesting this alternative).
Then ask any congressman or senator to give up the government-run "socialized" medicine plan they are enjoying in exchange for the same annual tax-free allowance of $5,000.
I am convinced that few if any seniors or politicians would give up his or her "public option" health insurance.
People who are unwilling to give up their own government-run "socialized" health care and yet work to deny others access to similar coverage via a robust public option are nothing less than hypocrites. No other developed/democratic country tolerates having its citizens' lives and welfare jeopardized by the financial and political interests of the corrupt and greedy few.
After reading its Aug. 3 editorial "A test for Obama," it occurred to me that it would be a great service to the public if The Blade would write a follow-up telling us who sponsored the $2.75 billion in earmarks and who voted for them. Who voted to build an unwanted F-18, three more C-17s, and the VH-71?
You understand where I'm going with this. If voters know who did what, and why, then perhaps good decisions can be made at the voting booth.
I read with interest the recent article regarding the fat people in the British army. One need only to sit on a bench and watch people at the mall to verify that the population in our country has grown fat also.
I worry about the youth, especially what with all the snack foods around. We are leading them down the path to high blood pressure, heart attack, and diabetes. Feed them three healthy meals and send them outside to play instead of letting them text until their fingers drop or watch TV.
Take a good look also at our police department, which I always thought embodied health and fitness. I would wager half to three quarters of them are overweight. They certainly could not chase a criminal very far. What happened to their standards and making them maintain them?
I know it's difficult to lose weight, but don't get there in the first place. There are many reputable weight-loss clinics around to help if you need one.
I read with interest the letter written by W. Scott Fry, president and CEO of the Hospital Council of Northwest Ohio. Mr. Fry accurately states that we must control obesity if we are to control medical costs in this country. One reason for obesity is that people choose to eat unhealthy foods. Less than one in 10 children get the five helpings of fruits and vegetables they require daily. Less than half of all Americans will eat a vegetable today.
A key factor that affects food choice is price. The foods that are the best for us are the most expensive. Those items include fruits and vegetables, seafood, meat, eggs, and dairy. The least expensive foods are the highly processed foods that typically contain too much salt, high fructose corn syrup, msg, xanthum gum, sugar, and partially hydrogenated oils. These ingredients are refined from farm crops in "food chemical" factories and mixed into processed foods to maximize sweet and salty flavor that promotes sales and not good health.
The reason these items are cheaper is the U.S. government's agricultural policy. Corn, soybean, rice, and sugar farm owners (not necessarily farmers) get huge payouts from the government to flood the market with the raw materials that drive the price of these highly processed foods down. It may not be reasonable or right to expect the food processors to try to limit their sales and profits, but it is reasonable for Americans to insist that these foods compete on a level playing field without the help of the U.S. government.
The Blade reported earlier this month that retired U.S. Supreme Curt Justice David Souter has urged the nation's lawyers to help revitalize civic education, warning that the failure of many Americans to understand how government works is a serious threat. He pointed to a poll showing two-thirds of Americans can't name the three branches of government - executive, legislative, and judicial.
My childhood classmates and I were taught the three branches of government at St. Stephen's elementary school in the Birmingham neighborhood of East Toledo by the Daughters of Divine Charity. The parish priest required each child in my class to memorize, and recite to him, the preamble to the U.S. Constitution. Each afternoon, when we returned from lunch, we were required to stand and recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag (located in each Catholic classroom) and sing the Star-Spangled Banner, in addition to our prayers. We were taught to respect those who had sacrificed so much to guarantee our precious freedoms. We all gathered outside St. Stephen's church and school to dedicate the memorial statue to our patron, St. Stephen of Hungary. This monument includes the engraved names of neighborhood residents who died serving our country in World War II, the Korea, and Vietnam.
My childhood neighborhood was not considered an affluent neighborhood; however, we were taught to love and serve God and country. I grew up in a blessed time, and I am so very grateful.
Judith M. Junga
Drastic times call for drastic measures. After living in this city for 50-plus years, it is time to "tender my resignation" of residency from the City of Toledo.
Born and raised here, I find this somewhat disconcerting. However, my present family of three adults, as well as that of a close family friend, have purchased properties in the good old state of Michigan. Our departure will alleviate you, the City of Toledo and Lucas County, from the boring task of counting our votes and tax dollars. Since I work outside Toledo, this move will also help to relieve you of the temptation to grab additional taxes due to my work location.
This action is prompted by your overall malfeasance, squandering, and mismanagement, to say nothing of the self-serving methods you engage in as public servants. You are truly "clueless in Toledo."
We have moved on to Lambertville, where the grass is greener, parking isn't an issue, law enforcement can and will respond in a timely manner, and where our commitments aren't bigger than our pockets, such as that new arena requiring extra policing that you don't have.
Anyway, we're off to flee the wizards. Don't forget to adjust your inflated census count and last one out catch the lights.
John C. Nadolny
Your story about the possibility of no Saturday mail delivery took me back to the days of two-a-day deliveries.