We’ll remember how you voted

Saw this on the internet, and I agree with it: Any senator willing to vote for this health care bill that will affect the lives of millions of people, prior to an independent analysis of the effects of the bill, should be run out of office as incompetent.

Sen. Joni Ernst and Sen. Chuck Grassley, the voters of Iowa will remember how you voted.

John Borger, Mason City

Senate works

for all of us

I will give a bit of credit to Chuck Grassley for actually telling us why he will vote for this new healthcare plan. It’s not because it’s a good bill, but because that is what the GOP promised its voters.

Since when do politicians keep their promises to voters? Why not work in a bi-partisan manner to actually create a good bill that is helpful to all?

You were sent to Congress to work together for the American people. Thank God for John McCain who is voting with his conscience rather than his party. That is the right thing to do.

I wish that more Senators would follow his lead. Let’s all call our Senators and let them know how we feel.

L.D. McLaughlin, Clear Lake

Single-payer

full of failure

Single-payer health care would be a disaster. Stephen Epperly’s letter to the editor on this subject on Sept. 24 was full of myths and lies. Consider these facts:

The California State Senate recently passed the Healthy California Act, which would effectively abolish private health coverage and enroll all residents, including those on Medicare employer sponsored insurance, Medi-Cal, the state’s sponsored Medicaid program, as well as all illegal immigrants. An analysis by the State Senate’s Appropriations Committee found that the measure would cost $400 billion annually, which is more than three times the state’s annual budget of $125 billion. Taxes of all types would have to be raised dramatically to make this even feasible.

In May, New York’s State Assembly passed a bill that would establish a single-payer system in the Empire State. It would cost as much as $226 billion in 2019 and destroy 175,000 jobs as companies flee to other states. The State’s entire revenue take is projected to be just $82 billion.

In Canada’s single-payer system, patients wait weeks for medical attention. According to Frazier Institute, a Canadian think tank, the median patient waits 20 weeks between referral from a general practitioner and receipt of treatment from a specialist. A 2014 study of 11 industrialized countries ranked Canada dead last in timeliness of care.

In the United Kingdom’s government-run system, patients aren’t faring any better. In 2015, more than 130,000 patients did not receive timely cancer care.

Bottom line, single-payer systems have consistently received poor reviews from those trapped in them.

Pat Ropella, Mason City

Group helps

focus our targets

Seventeen percent of our local eighth-graders have made a plan regarding suicide. Of those who make a plan, 71 percent will attempt it. Every year, we lose children in our region to suicide and many others need better access to mental health services. As a parent myself and family member and friend to many other parents, the likelihood that some of our children will fall into these categories compels me to want to make a meaningful difference.

As with anything that pulls on my heartstrings, my availability to support important causes must get in line with all my other obligations. Many of us are in this situation. We are fortunate enough to have the means to help, but between family, work, and volunteer time, our efforts are often spread too thin to make lasting impact.

We throw random darts at the greater good in an attempt to do something.

Supporting United Way of North Central Iowa offers a better way. As an organization with the power to collectively leverage the time and contributions of our entire community, it empowers anyone to be part of making a real and lasting difference. Far more than we could ever do individually.

As a board member, I encourage you to recognize United Way as a year-round community agency. You may come into contact with us every 12 months during campaign, but the daily work of this organization involves conducting community conversations, making connections with agencies, and gaining a comprehensive understanding of the most pressing local needs and gaps in services.

Please consider donating your time or talent to United Way and be part of measurable community impact. Many darts and focused targets means landing more bulls-eyes in helping children and adults in North Iowa.

Kristy Sagdalen King, Clear Lake

For GOP, platform over people

Donald Trump recently commented about Senator Rand Paul’s lack of support for repealing the Affordable Care Act. Trump said, “I know Rand Paul, and I think he may find a way to get there for the good of the party.”

Trump and many of the Republican legislators believe the Republican Party’s platform is more important than the welfare of the American people, such as providing affordable health care for Americans. Ironically, Congress men and women have the best health care insurance in the nation, which is paid for by taxpayers.

Most Americans do not realize insurance companies are lobbying for repeal of the current ACA and will replace it with policies that charge more for people with pre-existing health conditions. The insurance companies will profit more with the repeal of Obamacare.

Marylu Barnekow, Mason City

Protests strengthen love for U.S.

My father would often quote 18th Century French philosopher, Voltaire’s free speech maxim: “I do not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to day it.”

One of the reasons I am thankful I live in these United States is because I can speak out or peacefully protest when I feel my country is in the wrong or not living up to our values.

We fly the United States and Iowa flags on our property seven to eight months out of the year. When I see those flags flying in the breeze from my kitchen window, I am reminded of the freedoms and values that are protected in our federal and state constitutions. That is why, if my neighbor chooses to spit on, step on, burn or refuses to stand and salute at a public event those flags, that act will not affect one iota my love and faith I have in the core values of my country.

Therein lies the strength of my beloved democratic republic.

Johanna Anderson, Osage

Lots of hurt

ahead of election

In Sunday’s Globe Gazette, the headline said, “’Mason City is dying.’”

For years, I’ve begged to take action and get high-paying jobs here. It seems all they want is part-time jobs, retail and restaurant. People can’t pay rent or house payments on part-time jobs or raise a family. It’s no wonder people move away.

The town hurts, schools hurt, and so many here are already getting help from food stamps and the food bank. There needs to be a six-month line for help. Help them to take work and to get on their feet. Help is not free and not a way of life.

The town wants to spend millions downtown. Why? They’re getting ahead of themselves. Look who’s expanding: Mercy hospital (for mental health care), Good Shepherd, and Legacy Apartments.

It’s sad but true: seniors stay here. Don’t move and we have a steady income, but we all worked many years for what we have now. Nothing’s free. Someone pays. Our new governor says Iowa is paying out more than it’s taking in. Health care is not free; ask anyone. Help anyone who needs it, but make a time limit on the help!

A big vote is coming up in our town. Think about all options. This vote will affect all of us.

Kay Bessman, Mason City

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