Comments about ‘Letters: Beware 'free money'’

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Published: Saturday, Feb. 23 2013 12:00 a.m. MST

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Eli Tesecular PhD
Salt Lake City, UT

I find it shocking how callous and greedy the right wingers in this country have become. Their selfishness is supported and encouraged by talk radio and Fox News. They have no idea of how many people in our society are unable to work due to medical conditions such as PATSS (productivity averse traumatic stress syndrome) and various other forms of LIB (labor induced bipolarism). And why do they always bring up cellphones and cable TV? These things have become essential for the pursuit of happiness, which as I recall, is guaranteed by our Constitution.

pragmatistferlife
salt lake city, utah

And so Patti, there is something wrong with someone who also works hard and can afford 30 dollars a month for a cell phone so they can keep track of their kids, but can't afford an insurance payment of 500 dollars a month because they work at a minimum wage job. And heaven help us if that same person actually has a tv, and I'm sure the end is near if they have both and...dare I say a computer. All of which cost probably 500 dollars purchased over a protracted period and costs 50 dollars a month to operate. How dare they.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Someone has been listening to too much hate radio. There is very little factual information in this letter. Every American -- not the government -- has been handing a whole lot of "free money" to the health insurance industry for far too long.

It's time to change that.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

A recent article in a newsmagazine pointed out how medicaid keeps costs down by only paying hospitals for real costs, not the obscene inflated prices they charge the rest of us. We need single payer health care and providers that are institutions of our community, not for profit organisations, to get health spending under control. It's not free, and no one says it is. But it would cover all of us, including the handicapped, unemployed, elderly, and various other deadbeats the letter writer is worried are getting something he isn't. And it will do it more cost effectively.

omni scent
taylorsville, UT

Pati, you are correct in saying "The Feds only get what they take from taxpayers". 10% of this expansion will come from our state taxes, and 90% from our federal taxes. But here is the catch: we have to pay that 90% weather the state accepts the expansion or not, except if not, the state gets nothing to show for it.
I'm grateful for the insurance that I have, but i'm worried about the uninsured single mother, the widow with diabetes, or the college student that gets diagnosed with cancer. It is your own choice to decide not to help out, my my religeon teaches me that we should help the poor and sick, without judging them (Book of Mormon Mosiah 4:16-18, New Testament Matthew 25:34-46)

embarrassed Utahn!
Salt Lake City, UT

Why weren't those freeloaders just born with money!? Those grifters probably voted for Obama too!

I'm sure cellphones are full of nutrition! They should just eat those phones! Lousy grifters! Living the good life off other people's generosity!

It is lucky for those grifters that Utah is so full of generous christlike people!

embarrassed Utahn!
Salt Lake City, UT

Attitudes like this really helped me choose my moniker. Today I'm an extremely embarrassed Utahn.

ECR
Burke, VA

"...more people need to step up and take responsibility for themselves."

I can easily say, without question, that I have not used more for healthcare related costs than I and my employer have paid in premiums, and I have diabetes and was just treated for cancer. There are others in the world who are more healthy than I am who are really getting the shaft. And it's not the government that's taking your money from you. It is the insurance industry. How many multi-millionaires exist among the executives of the insurance industry? And they made this money how? By taking your money and giving to a healthcare provider. Just trading dollars. And don't get me started on the small percentage they pay to the healthcare providers compared to what they are billed.

So what is it that insurance companies do for you and me? Their number one job is to make money for their stockholders. Some good comes from that because they have programs that encourage those who pay the premiums to stay healthier. Why? So they can make more money. I'll say it again, healthcare as a for profit industry is just wrong.

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

People who complain about the good life lived by poor people have probably never lived the life of poor people. Or if they did, have totally forgotten what it’s like not to be free from want.

My wife would probably give up eating before giving up her cell phone. As I recall before we got cell phones, internet, cable TV we could eat out more often.

Probable facts:

Poverty is caused by the economic system. The economic system is a fiercely competitive game where there are winners and losers. Losers live in poverty.

Government is the umpire. it’s job is to provide and enforce rules that make the game fair for all. It often provides free kicks or free throws to penalize the offending players.

Anyone who eats and otherwise consumes the benefits of our civilization is a tax payer. Consumers, rich or poor, end up paying all taxes. There is no 47%.

All wealth is created by the physical or mental efforts of people. The most flagrant case of some living off the work of others is the businessman who buys labor low and sells it high.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

Most poor people are hard workers. This is where the
term working poor comes from. They have jobs that
don't pay very much and that have very good
benefits.

These people deserve to have a decent life too just
like the rest of us. Any country where corporate
executives are allowed to take tens or hundreds of
millions of dollars per year can certainly afford
to see to it that all of its people, including its
working poor and their children get decent health
care.

Mountanman
Hayden, ID

The problem with too easy welfare is just that, too easy. Voting for Democrats is easier than working for a living! Dependency is a bad thing!

Another Perspective
Bountiful, UT

If we stopped continually getting into wasteful
and unnecessary wars, ensuring that even the
poor among and their children get the health
care they need would be more affordable.

Grover
Salt Lake City, UT

Patti and several posters are wrong! They do not pay for insurance...they pay insurance premiums. Anyone who collects on a claim is getting it from other peoples premiums (funneled through the insurer). None of us can afford a large loss, but companies pay them every day...because not everyone makes a claim. So don't get so sanctimonious please.

wrz
Ogden, UT

@Eli Tesecular PhD:
"They have no idea of how many people in our society are unable to work due to medical conditions such as PATSS (productivity averse traumatic stress syndrome) and...LIB (labor induced bipolarism)."

I got some of that... PATSS and LIB. I went to work and didn't like it interfering with my free time and fun. So I went on unemployment welfare. Feeling alot better.

"And why do they always bring up cellphones and cable TV? These things have become essential for the pursuit of happiness, which as I recall, is guaranteed by our Constitution."

I don't see 'pursuit of happiness' in the Constitution nor cell phones or cable TV in there, either. Where you getting this stuff?

@one old man:
"Every American... has been handing a whole lot of 'free money' to the health insurance industry for far too long."

Not to worry. Obama has plans to fix that by killing health insurance companies... which Obamacare is designed to do.

@Hutterite:
"And it will do it more cost effectively."

You're kidding...? Health insurance premiums are expected to go up to about $20,000 per family. Is that more 'cost effective?'

Alfred
Ogden, UT

@embarrassed Utahn!:
"Attitudes like this really helped me choose my moniker. Today I'm an extremely embarrassed Utahn."

You can solve that problem by moving to another state... or perhaps another country.

@omni scent:
"... but i'm worried about the uninsured single mother."

How did she become a single mother? Did she think it through carefully or just stumble into her mess? Are we supposed to indemnify her poor judgement?

"... the widow with diabetes..."

Widow I can see. But what about the diabetes? Much of it is preventable and mostly caused by improvident living, over weight, poor diet. Are we supposed to indemnify her for her poor judgement?

".. my religion teaches me that we should help the poor and sick..."

I doubt if your religion tells you the government should provide for the poor ans sick.

@ECR:
"So what is it that insurance companies do for you and me?"

What you need is the government to provide all your healthcare needs... something like Obamacare... That way, when you get to be old, say past your expected life's length, and need a hip replacement the government can tell you to go home and take a pain pill.

Neanderthal
Ogden, UT

@Ultra Bob:
"My wife would probably give up eating before giving up her cell phone."

I think people who lived before cell phones, ipads, and cable TV did alright. I should know.

"Poverty is caused by the economic system."

If you want out of poverty, work hard and smart and you'll likely make it.

"The economic system is a fiercely competitive game where there are winners and losers. Losers live in poverty."

It's the worst system in the world... except for all the rest (to quote someone).

"All wealth is created by the physical or mental efforts of people."

So, if you want out of poverty or don't want to get in it... be sure to train yourself. Many poor don't.

"The most flagrant case of some living off the work of others is the businessman who buys labor low and sells it high."

What? That only happens when labor is abundant... such as now when we are flooded with alotta immigrants (legal and otherwise). When labor is scarce the opposite of your example occurs. It's the job of our politicians to see that the labor force stays at optimum levels.

Grover
Salt Lake City, UT

What is going on in Ogden this weekend? Major meanie convention! Where to begin...let me make only this point since they won't read past the first few lines anyway:

WRZ says: "Health insurance premiums are expected to go up about $20,000 per family. Is that more cost effective?" I have never heard that number but for the sake of argument, let's say it is accurate since insurance premiums have been going up at above the inflation rate for 20 YEARS NOW (Obama was still in college). You are the President: "What would you do to reverse the trend?"

The only standard answers given are: 1. Put caps on medical malpractice claims. 2. Sell health insurance across State lines. Three States have caps and their cost have not come down. Selling Insurance nationwide is something currently banned by the States Rights folks...the same ones that hate Obamacare. The rest of the world has national health care where citizens don't begrudge others getting care AND they pay less than half what we do!

Elementary School Question: "What is wrong with this picture?"

ECR
Burke, VA

Alfred - Your simplistic interpretation of government run healthcare systems runs counter to the government programs fund in virtually every industrialized nation in the the world expect one - ours. Those other countries use a wide variety of methods for providing healthcare to their citizens and none of them are based on providing maximum profit to insurance companies. Every aspect of our lives, even in this "capitalistic" society of ours doesn't have to be, and in many cases, shouldn't be provided by the private sector. The insurance industry is the perfect example of the hypocrisy of private enterprise. "Oh let my company provide that service to everyone and keep the government out...well, that is until the risks get too big. People who are really sick? Let the government provide insurance for them. I'll just cover the healthy ones. Building houses in a hurricane zone? Let the government provide insurance for them too. Just let me make money. Let the government take all the risk" Calling that capitalism is a pathetic example of ignorance.

one old man
Ogden, UT

wrz says: "Not to worry. Obama has plans to fix that by killing health insurance companies... which Obamacare is designed to do."

And I say, GOOD! Let's at least kill or reform the blood sucking industry it has morphed into today.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Alfred asks: ""... but i'm worried about the uninsured single mother."

How did she become a single mother? Did she think it through carefully or just stumble into her mess? Are we supposed to indemnify her poor judgement?

"... the widow with diabetes..."

Widow I can see. But what about the diabetes? Much of it is preventable and mostly caused by improvident living, over weight, poor diet. Are we supposed to indemnify her for her poor judgement?"

It's pretty apparent Alfred is limiting his thinking to include only possibilities tossed out by hate radio.

Could that single mother have become so because of her husband's death -- or because he was an abusive drunk?

And is he absolutely sure that 100% of all diabetes cases are the fault of the person who has it?

It is this kind of all or none thoughtlessness that makes progress nearly impossible.

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