Steve Chittock

Want better care and a better system? Fat chance

Talking to people about health care reform is scary. People actually believe that we as a people will get a new and worthwhile health care system that will please us. How can it happen when the nation is broke? There is no money for a revised health care system. Wars, yes. Health no.

Further, our current system does not function in the people's interest. Primarily, it operates for the benefit of pharmaceutical corporations and their hundreds of billions in annual income from drug sales, etc. People are unaware that a single new drug can earn many billions - just one drug! Nobody or no one else in the system really matters. Money buys everything and nearly everybody, top-down.

Why? Because drug corporations have been allowed to get way too big, and too powerful. From their monster incomes they can buy all the rest of the entire system and they do it every day of the year.

Want better care and a better system? Fat chance - why would the drug companies give up their total hold over today's medicine when they can assure themselves a great future over which they already have complete control?

Most people are unaware that many drugs are actually developed by college professors. Cozy? Yep, we the people pay for the college and drug companies and the college split new medicine income.

Here's a crow's-eye view of our system. At the top are the drug companies. Next down the line is: the weak, incompetent Food and Drug Administration - conceived to assure public control over our nation's medical apparatus. Then there is a congressional committee, that is supposed to give oversight to the system. Last I read the chair of that committee got $125,000 from drug companies when he faced re-election. Next in line is the American Medical Association. Drug companies manage many AMA activities with money - luxury trips, conventions, whatever.

There seems reason to doubt tomorrow's medical system will offer new benefits. In fact there will be cuts - perhaps little touches may be offered as positive changes.

Today, America's medical system is the most expensive of any in the world and still, millions get few or no free services.

Our wealthy politicians get outstanding medical care - they gave it to themselves but they won't give it to the most needy. We've got to win a war or two or three.

Walter Morse

Crescent City

Gov. made cuts without regard to those they are affecting

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is and has been trying to fill California's budget deficit. Drastic and horrendous cuts have been made to dental, podiatry, chiropractic and optical care affecting those who need it most.

It's amazingly clear that he made these cuts without regard to those they are affecting and hurting. His only concern was the almighty dollars he wanted to fill this deficit.

While we as taxpayers know and understand that the money has to come from somewhere, I have to question why he made no cuts to medical care for inmates. They are and continue to receive better medical care, including the specialties listed above, than those who are more justly deserving.

With these cuts he's made, the needy now suffer and hurt while those who are locked up receive the care. If being locked up means receiving the medical care one needs, then being arrested is a definite plus, not a minus, although being arrested is an extreme measure to receive medical care. Is our governor leaving any other option? I think not! It's really something to think about.

Prisoners, by being found guilty of their crimes, should have no rights to any medical care that law-abiding citizens can't receive.

Gov. Schwarzenegger took very little care, time, thought and consideration into where he chose to make cuts. Why did he not make cuts to medical care for inmates? Are they more important to him than the well deserving? It seems so!

Our governor most definitely needs some major schooling in prioritizing what's best for Californians instead of being totally focused on only money.

Jill Bausch

Crescent City

Kudos to Thomas Elias for opinion piece on state budget

I always enjoy reading Thomas Elias's California Focus opinion pieces, as they seem to be well researched and are well written. I say that even though I disagree with them at least half the time.

Nonetheless I will give kudos when warranted and it is on this subject ("Budgeters ignore the obvious," July 28).

Being a 51-year-old native of California, I had to do the proper thing when I sold my original 1980 home and bought a different one in 2003. You can imagine the tax hit I got because I did not have the means or family or connections to utilize the "partnership clause."

I'm just glad that Elias got this out in the press so that many others now know about it. I realize this clause was probablyandensp;a business promotion type thing for California, but it should at least be more equitable to the "simple/common folk" such as I and millions of other Californians.

Dan Jeppson

Crescent City

Thanks to Mr. Miles for letting the public know about garden

Regarding Richard Miles' letter ("Trying to understand why vandals damaged garden," July 25), I may be pretty cold-hearted about a lot of things, but I want to thank Mr. Miles for letting the public know that a public garden was vandalized.

I am pledging $30 to the Community Assistance Network to help replace the trees that someone has killed. I would like CAN to publish an address to send my check to and I would like the rest of the community to also meet my donation!

People can be angry about a lot of things and we all are, but a good garden with healthy food is just about the best thing that any community can have to share. Everyone can do without a lot of things, but food grown in our own community is something that I think every town and city should do!

I wish that everyone could walk down a street with fruit trees on it, if that was the case maybe no one would be hungry! Sorry for being sappy, I am usually not that person.

Brenda Johnston

Crescent City

Appreciation to those who sponsored tennis tourney

I'd like to thank the family and friends of Dr. Jim Piotrowski for sponsoring "Jimbo's Junior Tennis Tournament" this past weekend, and the Del Norte Tennis Association for conducting the event held at the High School Tennis Courts.

The memorial fund established by Jim and his family and friends enabled over 35 junior tennis players to participate in the tournament for a very small fee. Kids from both Humboldt and Del Norte counties have been enthusiastically practicing all summer to get ready for this event, and it appeared that they all had a great time, as did the families watching them.

Thanks again, and we'll look forward to "Jimbo's Junior Tennis Tournament" again next year.

Jane E. Rumiano

Crescent City

What Obama wants of seniors is sacrifice, plain and simple

President Obama is obviously counting on the Draconian rationing of seniors' health care to take up the slack in the funding of his monstrous Obamacare takeover of a large part of the nation's economy.

How do I know that? Here follows Obama's own barely literate words on the subject as found on Laura Ingraham's Web site's soundbite of the week:

"We know we spend a huge amount of money that last year of life.

"More and more people are gonna say, I don't want people poking tubes, and, you know, uh, doing all sorts of ... stuff.

"The most important thing we can do on end of life care right now is to encourage people to look at hospice as a . . . legitimate option."

Sound familiar?andensp;What this little man wants of seniors is sacrifice, plain and simple,andensp;so that his obscene Canadian-style health care plan can succeed.andensp;Think "Soylent Green."

This begs the question,andensp;what happens when a beloved senior's family desires to extend his/her life as long as possible and the "system" forbids further care? I shudder to think. Canadians and Brits right now face this dilemma. What do they do? They come here for treatment. But what if Obama makes sure there is no here, here? Where to go then?

What I don't understand is why more people aren't alarmed by the obvious. Obama will balance the health care budget on the backs of the old people. Is there any doubt?

And where in this is the sainted protector of the elderly, AARP? They are strangely silent.

You people better wake up!andensp;

Carter Swart

Crescent City