Open letter to Rep. Rooney
Your remarks concerning the health care bills’ tax breaks for the rich will trickle down in the form of jobs and investments is woefully short of my experience. When President Bush gave an enormous tax break for the rich, job growth was insignificant. We have been fighting with this trickle-down theory for so long I have changed parties. I experienced 38 years as the head of a small manufacturing company. As such, I benefited tax-wise from corporate tax incentives which put way more money in my pocket than any tax breaks. I was granted at least five separate tax abatements for investing in plant, equipment, and people. I bought a new building and added on to it three times, going from 20,000 square feet to 62,000. From 14 employees to more than double. From property tax breaks I benefited personally, and I avoided high personal taxes by reinvesting in my company. I retired, basically on the rent from the building. But I always paid at least 3/4 of my employees’ health insurance.
Most wealthy people would take extra “tax refund” money and invest in other people’s businesses; like stocks and bonds, real estate, luxuries and travel. Health care should be a right of citizenship.
I am totally for a single-payer system, like most of the industrialized world. Of course, that would include many government jobs, but aren’t jobs the point? It is then up to you and the rest of Congress to oversee and protect the system, instead of overseeing and protecting the insurance companies, while taking their political contributions.
Nathan Blyveis, Cape Coral
Pitts and concealed carry
Since I usually use Mr. Pitts section to clean up after my dog, I decided to read his column on Mr. Castile shooting after being stopped by police.
As usual, Mr. Pitts fails to tell the whole story. After Mr. Castille notified the officer he had a gun, he kept reaching around which is clearly shown in the video. When you carry a gun, you have a higher responsibility than most citizens. Yes, it’s your right, but as with most rights, those rights come with additional responsibilities.
When stopped by police and notify them (required by law) that you have a firearm, your best bet is to put your hands on the wheel and not move unless directed to do so. The officer will direct you from there. Your job is to make the officer feel safe and that’s the additional responsibility that comes with that right to carry.
Don’t fidget, don’t play cute games, etc. It does not matter what color you are. It’s just common sense.
Darren LaGrave, Matlacha
How could GOP politicians in Washington propose a bill blocking many of their constituents’ access to fundamental health care? According to the CBO, the Senate’s health care proposals would kick 24 million Americans off their insurance. It’d once again allow insurance companies to charge ridiculous premiums or deny coverage on the basis of pre-existing conditions. The bill would also have a disproportionately negative impact on women who could once again lose health care for gender-specific pre-existing conditions such as having given birth or suffering from domestic violence. The Senate bill also prevents Medicaid recipients from receiving care at Planned Parenthood. Florida women would lose access to what is often their only affordable provider of basic health care including STD testing and treatment, cancer prevention exams, and birth control. And it specifically bans insurance coverage for abortion–a safe, legal medical procedure chosen by hundreds of thousands of American women each year. Senate GOP leaders made a huge mistake crafting this widely unpopular bill behind closed doors. It’s disappointing that they lacked the courage to engage in an open transparent debate.
Joyce Gerber, Naples
Repeal and replace
A lot of people, myself included, have wondered what is so difficult about repealing and replacing Obamacare, particularly when the issue arises among Republicans alone who, if united, can pass whatever they want even though their control of the Senate is slim.
If this is considered only a problem of drafting the answer is simple; there are very capable House and Senate staff people who could grind out the language in a day or two provided that we all agree on what we want.
Drafting is not the problem, which is nearly entirely ideological and philosophical, as admirably pointed out in the article by Eliza Collins in the USA Today supplement in The News-Press, June 29.
Should the public be offered regulated plans which would include maternity care, coverage for pre-existing conditions and other things which not everyone needs, or should there be an optional alternative embracing whatever a person wants with or without maternity care etc.? Those who are most enamored of free-market capitalism will prefer the first option — a smorgasbord of choices. Those who like the idea of burden-sharing will prefer the second. In other words, who pays for what?
Do some people pay for the previous health and maternity costs of others or does everyone simply pay for what he himself or herself wants? That’s the problem.
Richard W. Metz, Fort Myers
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Health care; open letter to Rep. Rooney