Comments about ‘Letter: Health care is not a 'right' — it is a responsibility’

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Published: Sunday, July 1 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Burke, VA

"Obviously there are and always will be exceptions to the rule and then local government should provide assistance."

Of course, whenever there are circumstances where "private industry" can't make a profit, then the government should step in to help out. That has been the mantra of the private sector throughout history. Home insurance in hurricane zones, housing the poor and low income, whatever, the private sector wants no part of it if they can't make a buck.

"Shouldn't we be teaching our children to prepare now for their future?" Tell that to a three year old boy diagnosed with juvenile diabetes whose parents have discovered that not one insurance company will cover them because they own a small business and their "group" is not big enough.

And what do insurance companies do for us anyway, besides taking 30% off the top of our premiums and put it in their pockets? I don't know if healthcare is a right or a responsibility, but before we put one more dollar in the pockets of insurance companies, military contractors or give special tax privileges to private equity firms, we should take care of the health of our citizens.

Kearns, UT

The CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the deficit by $250 Billion in 10 years. That is a reduction, not an increase. Repealing it adds the reduction back to the deficit.

Health Care is as much a right as school is. The same logic that requires me to pay for other families children to attend school requires that others are responsible for their own healthcare.

A healthy society is needed just as much as an educated society.

If you are against ACA or healthcare requirements for individuals, than you are also against the requirement that everyone, with or without children, pay for schools. Where is the uproar with that.

Oh, one more thing. You may not know this but the ACA that was pushed by Obama, it is the same health care plan that has been pushed by Republicans since the late 80's. They all wanted it until Obama decided that it would be good. It was pushed by the Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute. The 2 most conservative groups in the county.

salt lake city, utah

"Then logic kicked in. We are going to add 30 million people to the health care rolls at no extra cost? " First of all these people are all ready on the health care rolls, and you are paying for them. Secondly the 30 million are being added to the insuraned rolls and they are paying premiums so yes they are taking responsibility for themselves (I know..some of the premiums are being subsidized, but they are being forced to be responsible).

Springville, UT

This letter is hogwash. There is no point in debating the issue when misleading propaganda is the rule. I am not sure I have ever seen such a mischaracterization of this issue as I see here.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Mr. Carabine, like many others on the right side which is really the wrong side, completely ignores the fact that the ACA is requiring personal responsibility. At long last, anyone who can afford to pay the premiums MUST buy that coverage.

He is ignoring the fact that all of us who have been responsible in the past have been paying a hidden tax to cover those who were either irresponsible or who simply could not afford exorbitant premiums. We paid for them under Reagan's requirement that allowed them to receive free emergency care when needed.

ACA is the epitome of personal responsibility. Isn't that what people like this writer have been demanding?

Salt Lake City, UT

The author missed an important point - no is claiming we can "add 30 million people to the health care rolls at no extra cost." The Affordable Care Act include mechanisms by which we can add those people and pay for them. The mechanisms include some new taxes but also a variety of mechanisms to help keep insurance premiums affordable, and to alter the ways in which health care is delivered in order to control costs. The ACA may not go far enough but it represents a serious attempt to control health care costs. It includes a wide array of experiment - i.e. health exchanges in the states, funds studies to identify comparative effectiveness of treatments - to control costs.

The reveal, however, comes when the author claims health care is not a right but a responsibility. Everything else in the letter is written to justify that position.

Compare our health care system to those in other nations with universal health care; the US pays more and gets lesser outcomes than do any of those nations. That creates a competitive disadvantage for American businesses. So it's not only good policy, it's good economics.

American Fork, UT

Republicans are not 'realists', they have no plan at all and are happy to see you go under the bus. Yes, we need to change the role of insurance companies; we need to get them out of health provision entirely. Health is not an insurable commodity, and health care is something we can provide to one another. There's plenty of room to cover everyone if we take out insurance bottom lines and infrastructure. Besides, a lot of those 30 (or 40 or whatever) million are going to end up costing us all in one way or another.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Health care is not an enumerated duty found in the Constitution. People either cannot read or they refuse to read the list of duties that must be performed by the Federal Government. That list is very short. It contains only seventeen items. Health care is NOT on that list.

That does not mean that "government" should not somehow be involved in healthcare, but if we are a nation of law-abiding citizens, we know that the FEDERAL level of government cannot legally perform healthcare (except to tax us, as the provided in the last ruling).

Amendment 10 provides the answer. If we want government to provide health care, then it is up to the STATES to provide that health care - just as Romney did when he was governor of a State.

Things are so simple when Congress doesn't try to "improve" on the Constitution by writing legislation that they are not authorized to write.

John Roberts essentially told us that it is our duty, as citizens, to throw out those who voted for the ACA. When we do that, perhaps, just perhaps, Congress will realize that we are serious about the Constitution.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

wah wah wah, does the right want some more cheese with their whine today?

Whenever I see folks like Alan write, "Health care is a responsibility" the obvious translation is:

"Health Care should ONLY be available for the rich or who don't have any pre-existing conditions. The rest of you? You don't deserve health care."

Furthermore, I haven't seen a letter written with so many inaccuracies. The ACA actually lowers the deficit, as we're already paying for people to get health care. The difference now is that they cannot be denied coverage, cannot be dropped because they get sick, and are now going to actually PAY for insurance.

See, that's the thing that repub "realists" don't understand. It's a simple concept really. When uninsured folks gets sick, we all end up paying for it. Either through the insurance company charging us extra or by their declaring bankruptcy and those costs are passed onto us.

The ACA helps people take responsibility and eliminates these costs from being placed on the rest of us that otherwise would.

Furthermore, when have repubs been realists about anything? Climate change, war, tax cuts, trickle down economics.....

Irony Guy
Bountiful, Utah

Uh oh, logic just kicked in. You add 30 million people to any risk pool and suddenly the risk goes down by a vast magnitude. It actually should mean much lower premiums. (This is real logic, as opposed to right-wing "logic," an oxymoron....)

Salt Lake City, UT

I was completely fooled by the title "Heatlh Care Is Not A Right - It Is A Responsiblity".

I thought the letter would outline why individuals should contribute to their own health care. Instead the message was "bury our heads in the sand and pretend nobody ever gets sick".

Sandy, UT

Alan, while I feel the ACA should only be the first step to a real universal healthcare system I am a witness that since 2010's intial implementation it saves money from the consumers pocket. You assume that people are in the same circumstances as you and since you never get sick and you have good health insurance policy that everyone is in the same boat but brother that ain't true. Clearly 1/3 of the deficit has been caused by the "mandate" from Congress in 2004 that said Medicare must pay full retail for prescriptions. They refer to this as the donut hole. Think about it, full retail. I am looking at a prescription bottle right now that costs $242 monthly at retail. Of course you righties love that Americans subsidize the world for pharma. Now they will negotiate prices which is only fair since we pay for the research of drugs. When shopping for a universal healthcare system, Taiwan studied every system in the world. Their conclusion was the U.S. is exactly what not to do.

Hank Pym

re: Mike Richards 8:43 a.m. July 1, 2012

"John Roberts essentially told us that it is our duty, as citizens, to throw out those who voted for the ACA. When we do that, perhaps, just perhaps, Congress will realize that we are serious about the Constitution."

He did this by voting w/ the Liberals & upholding a Govt mandate? He must be worlds greatest Agent provocateur?

Seriously, until Joe Average can pay members of Congress like special interests then things will continue to spiral out of control.

Eric Samuelsen
Provo, UT

This is an interesting letter. To paraphrase: "I was almost persuaded by facts, persuasively, logically and cogently presented. Then I remembered my ideology. Whew. Close call there."

The Politics of Listening
A Tropical Paradise USA, FL

Voter support for President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul has increased following the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling upholding it, a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Sunday showed.

Among all registered voters, support for the law rose to 48 percent in the online survey conducted after Thursday's ruling, up from 43 percent before the court decision.

The survey showed increased backing from Republicans and, crucially, the political independents whose support will be essential to winning the Nov. 6 presidential election.

Thirty-eight percent of independents supported the healthcare overhaul. That was up from 27 percent from a Reuters/Ipsos poll taken days before the justices' ruling.

This is a win for Obama. This is his bill. There's not really any doubt in people's minds, that it belongs to him. "It's his baby. It's literally been labeled Obamacare which maybe it works in his favor now that there's a little bit of a victory dance going on."

Live with it.


Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Health care ins not a right. But it could be.

All it would take is for honest, humane, caring, unselfish, decent people to wrest control of our government from the people who feel that they have a right profit from other peoples misfortune. And live off the labor of others.

The rights that we enjoy are the rights that our society gives to us and are secured and enforced by our strong national government. The people who would limit, starve and destroy our national government would take away the rights that are promised to Americans.

When we talk of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, we should realize that the most important factor of each of these is health. And without health care there is no protection from the ravages of illness, disease and trauma.

There is no enemy that harms us and takes away our freedom than the things that effect our health. Is our government not supposed to protect us?

There is no greater commonality of the danger. So why is it not a right like the other rights we have?

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Mike Richards.

When we elect a president, we are not electing him to be a janitor. As our main representative we expect him to manage and direct the nation mainly as we would do if we were in his position. We also expect him to do his job as a person in today’s world and not that of 200 years ago.

You seem to overlook the part of the Tenth Amendment that says that the people have just as much authority in their government as do the “states”.

Just because the criminal unscrupulous people in state government have acted to prevent the people from having their say, doesn’t change the fact that the Constitution says they have the same authority as the “states”.

The facts are that when the other mechanisms for supplying and providing for the people fail in their mission, people will look to their government for help.

It is the lack of proper health care that prompts us to look to government.

If a private solution to our needs can be found that is less oppressive and harmful to us, we would choose that over government action.

red state pride
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I concur with the letter writer. I completely disagree with the notion that just because you were fortunate enough to be born in the US you are automatically entitled to certain benefits. At least people who are eligible for the GI bill actually did something for their Country.
The fact is (as the writer stated in his letter) we're already bankrupt so nobody's getting free anything. Either taxes are going to be raised dramatically or benefits are going to be cut for la-de-da-dee everybody. There's no other way around it. The money just isn't there- unless you're the kind of psychopath leftist who wants to kill the entire economy and take 95% of everyone's income.

Happy Valley, UT

"Republicans are realists." Really now. If this were true, they would significantly raise taxes to pay for the deficits their policies and unfunded wars have created. We can afford the Affordable Care Act. But the Republicans won't allow a tax increase. Tax rates are at ridiculously low levels. I sit firmly in the middle class, but I can afford to pay more, and I am willing to pay more for all the benefits we've already committed to.

As for health care not being a "right," well, only to the American Right. Every other developed country and many Third World nations consider health care a right. They deliver good quality at half the price America pays. Are we so "exceptional" that we can't learn anything from other countries who long ago figured this out?

And Mike Richards, of course the Constitution says nothing about health care. Why would they mess with the proven success of administering calomel (which we now use as an insecticide) and bleeding the patient at every turn? Please join the 21st century.

Murray, UT

You can not be against ACA and for medicare.
Any argument against ACA can also be used against medicare.

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