ACA was no rush job
Editor: In response to Don Waltenspiel’s letter Saturday, “Did history repeat itself,” a simple check shows that the Affordable Care Act was thoroughly debated in committees and on the Senate floor before it became law. Check your facts sir.
The following is from snopes.com: “The ACA was debated in three House committees and two Senate committees and subject to hours of bipartisan debate that allowed for the introduction of amendments.”
“In June and July 2009, with Democrats in charge, the Senate health committee spent nearly 60 hours over 13 days marking up the bill that became the Affordable Care Act. That September and October, the Senate Finance Committee worked on the legislation for eight days — its longest markup in two decades. It considered more than 130 amendments and held 79 roll-call votes. The full Senate debated the health care bill for 25 straight days before passing it on Dec. 24, 2009.”
JANET D. REYNOLDS
EDITOR: Alan Wayne’s recent letter (“So what if rich get help?” Saturday) asserts that “people who have money should not be required to support those who do not,” and “the federal government is too big” and “wastes money.” He overlooks the benefits we all receive from the government. Did he go to a public school? Does he use interstate highways? Does he support the military and vets? Did he accept FEMA assistance after the October fires? Is he on Medicare? Does he think the government should not be responsible for these things? Government has an important role to play in our society. Jeffrey Frank, reviews a book in the New York Times titled, “The Gifted Generation: When Government was Good.”
The book outlines the dangers of a “recessive” government and that the role of the government as “umpire, the leveler, has diminished.”
Frank points out that “without an umpire, a society may be forced to function without the rules that help guarantee order, fairness, and, as the Constitution put it so well, ‘the general welfare.’ ”
I’m more than happy to contribute my share of taxes ensure that these ideals are upheld.
It’s in everybody’s interest
EDITOR: Concerning Alan Wayne’s letter (“So what if rich get help?”), he seems to be missing the subtleties of a social democracy. The outrage is not in allowing the rich to keep more of their money but allowing them to do so in a time of deficit spending when the middle class is shrinking due to stagnant wages caused by oppressive financial policies.
Social safety nets, which got their start after the Great Depression, seem to often be equated with giveaways to the lazy. Yet much of the problems caused by indigents who don’t play by the rules can be traced back to a lack of basic education; an educated population makes better choices.
Yet this administration continues to eat away at public education, withholding more money from schools to give back to the wealthy. If we don’t, as a society, learn that it is in everyone’s interest to keep the general population educated and healthy, the middle class will cease to exist and the rich, although even wealthier, will be unable to sustain their lifestyles in a society collapsing around them. They cannot insulate themselves forever from the reality outside their gates, no matter how much money they have.