How can politicians get things so wrong, namely about the cost of health care and end-of-life choices? There is no limit to the cost of medical care as presently practiced in the United States.

They think they can save money by reducing Medicare and Medicaid benefits without raising an outcry, but that would limit care to the most numerous and most needy elderly.

Just as an example, the cost of “cure” for every case of rheumatoid arthritis with the new biologicals is $30,000 to $40,000 a year, and the same is true for new medical cures for some cancers. The cost of every hip or knee replacement and wrist fusion is in the same ballpark.

If one needs a kidney, liver, pancreas, bone marrow or lung, then it would be about $100,000 or more. Then if one projects the increase in the elderly population to the year 2050, one can imagine the cost of health care at that time. This is not to include the cost of caring in nursing homes for two to 10 years for terminal Alzheimer’s patients.

The cost of health care must be the obligation of the government, as in every other country in the Western world.

How can they do it at government expense and still not deny 90 percent of the population the best health care for the next 30 years? But that might be the case here if we go on as House Speaker John Boehner plans.

There is a best medicine, a best surgical procedure, a compassionate way of dying. There are the best doctors, there is the best method of health care delivery, and they can all be provided by the single-payer system, as in the rest of the Western world.

Philip Thompson

Portland

 

Gov. LePage and his attorney general are concerned about the constitutionality of the health care reform act. What about the constitutionality of those fortunate enough to have insurance paying for those who can’t afford it or elect not to buy it?

It’s estimated that each insured person pays approximately $1,000/year in additional premium to cover the uninsured.

Unless those who want to opt out of insurance are also willing to opt out of receiving care they can’t pay for out of pocket, the mandate is necessary. The system will only function effectively if everyone’s covered.

LePage still clings to free-market cures for our failing health insurance system, in spite of mounds of evidence that the market has failed miserably. Purchasing health care isn’t like buying a pair of shoes. Sure, you can purchase cheap health insurance; and as is usually the case, you get what you pay for.

We have the most expensive system of any developed country, yet our health outcomes don’t reflect that. We will never thrive as a state or nation as long as one in six (and counting!) Americans has no affordable access to even basic preventive care, and when an illness or accident has the potential to destroy a family economically.

Get focused on moving the state forward, Governor, by mobilizing to implement the Affordable Care Act. “People before politics,” remember?

Mary Ann Larson

New Gloucester

 

The states, as sovereign entities, via the sovereignty of their people, lawfully decide their own affairs. The Ninth and 10th Amendments uphold state sovereignty and all rights of the people and states.

The so-called “legal scholars” claiming the states’ nullification of Obamacare is unconstitutional are incorrect. The incomplete statement stating federal laws are “the supreme law of the land” gives an erroneous impression to your readers.

The Constitution for the United States of America, as amended in 1791 with the Bill of Rights, in Article VI, clause 2, states the following: “The Constitution and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof … shall be the supreme Law of the Land.”

The “health care” bill is not made in accordance with the Constitution, and, in fact, is unconstitutional regarding the people’s rights. This bill does not improve health care, but aids insurers, imposes tyrannical burdens on people, businesses, doctors and states, infringing upon their rights and freedom.

It deceitfully imposes taxes and fines, is replete with privacy abuses and limits health care for seniors. Most of Congress voted for this abomination without even reading it. These criminals should be removed from office for their treasonous actions against us all.

The states created the federal government but kept their sovereignty. No creature can be greater than its creator. The federal government lacks lawful authority to dictate to sovereign states or violate the Constitution.

Thomas Jefferson understood the danger of an all-powerful federal government. I hope the people of this nation also understand this danger and, en masse, show vociferous support for their courageous senators, representatives and governors in their righteous efforts to nullify Obamacare.

Margy Flynn

Bingham

 

The discussion on the merits of “Obamacare” have stalled in the name-calling stage. The Affordable Care Act is tyrannical; it is unconstitutional; it infringes on our freedoms, some say.

William Schneider, Maine’s new attorney general, has jumped into the national fray by joining the suit against the government to repeal the new law.

So repeal the law. And then what? The American taxpayer will continue to foot the bill for the uninsured who use emergency rooms as their personal physician’s office.

Who will gain by the repeal of the law? Certainly not the millions of small businesses and hard-working people who dutifully subscribe to health insurance.

No, they will continue to see their premiums increase by double digits on an annual basis as a direct result of runaway medical costs strained by providing health care to millions of uninsured.

So I ask you, Gov. LePage, Attorney General Schneider and strident opponents of health care reform: Where are your concrete proposals for dealing with the health care crisis in this country? How do you plan to address this problem in our state?

Part of being an adult is providing for your needs and those of your family. That should include purchasing an affordable, basic level of health insurance that encompasses preventive care.

If people feel this is too intrusive and infringes on their personal freedoms, they should be willing to sign a pledge that they will not use the health care system when they get ill.

Because if they’re not going to pay for their own medical expenses, you can bet that the rest of us will have to foot the bill.

Nancy A. Ciocca

South Portland