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On healthcare

    To date, much has been said in the media by the representatives of both sides of the fence regarding proposed healthcare legislation. Hopefully serious debate will continue until citizens have a plan that serves better than the system currently in use.  The exception being, of course, the one Congress enjoys at tax payer expense.

    An Op ED writer in a local newspaper Sunday supported free market profit margins saying that “without the profit motive, there are limited incentives to combat inefficiency.” I assume he also applauds United Healthcare’s doubling their bottom line profits during the last year - one of the worst in our economy.  Some would call that greed especially when they, and the pharmaceutical companies, employ lobbyist to campaign Congress on their behalf to eliminate crossing over into Canada for prescription drugs or having coverage that transfers over state lines.

    The writer of the op ed piece goes on to note that  “government attempts to control costs by imposing price controls. The reimbursement rate paid to hospitals and physicians is below the actual cost of providing services.” I assume he also supports a patient paying $10. for a box of tissues?

    As to who is directing the cost of health insurance I can say with assurance that private insurances companies are in total control.  This year alone my insurance company, Piedmont Healthcare to whom I pay $864. monthly, advised that I would no longer have the option of where my annual tests ($80.) could be performed because the person reading the test - not my physician, but the doctor reading the test, was not under their umbrella.  The charade of “care” continues. My husband and I reside in another state several months each year.  Our deductible increased threefold while we were there because we were “out of territory”.  When we spoke with an Anthem representative about similar coverage, we were given the price range of $2,000 to $3,600 monthly for private health care” because of existing conditions.  Another story, my daughter is paraplegic since birth and now, at age 40, requires an electric wheelchair.  Her company, Aetna, denied her the cost of the new chair last year, after emergency surgery, because it was purchased “out of territory” and “without prior consent.”

    My question to those who oppose change in our current healthcare system is who is directing our healthcare if not greedy directors of insurance companies setting in their professionally decorated offices?

    The time is now, not the next decade, for responsible political leaders to check their egos, gather at the “round table’ and hash out the bottom line issues regarding this nation’s healthcare.  The plans being presented today obviously need to be tweaked but at least they are on the table and for those who insist on the term “socialized medicine” I hope they have the decency to refuse their medicare and or medicaid payments when the time comes.

    Regardless of your feelings on the issue, all citizens should be voicing their opinions to their Representatives.  In the end we get what we deserve.

Marie S. Batten


Creating a new plan


     What is all the hullabaloo about creating a new Health Care Plan?  We already have a good plan, well anyway Congress does.  It must be good because it has been in force for a number of years and everyone that is covered by it has never complained about it.  As a matter of fact all those covered by the plan appear to be very happy with it as those that participate in the plan have the power to change it but elect not to do so therefore it must be very good.

    But since Obama wants all Americans (and everybody else who lives here) to have a healthcare plan, it is very simple:  Just extend the existing plan that has been proven to be very effective for all of Congress to the American people. That sounds very fair to me.  If that plan is good for them, then I  would be satisfied with it.  Particularly since the 1,018 pages of the proposed plan for the rest of us includes some very serious objectionable and unacceptable provisions.

    Why bother to try to create a new plan which takes 1,018 pages to describe it and will be very costly? I seem to remember one of Obama’s promises that he would not sign a bill before it is available to the public for at lease one week.  Now he is pushing for a healthcare reform bill and wants member of Congress to vote on it without even having the time to read it and thoroughly understand all the provisions and ramifications.   Perhaps he doesn’t want even Congress to know what is in it? 

    Bottom line is:  if this healthcare problem is so very important as Obama says it is, then by all means, the Congress should take whatever time it needs to do it right and let the American people have the time to understand it and discuss it with their Representatives so their Representative can vote “the wishes of the people.”  That is what they were elected to do.

    Everyone in America has access to the best healthcare in the world.  Some people do not have healthcare insurance, but they still have access to healthcare.  Perhaps we do not need healthcare reform, all we need is insurance reform.

    Under the guise of transparency:  Ever wonder why, when Obama has a news conference on T.V. for all the newspaper and media representatives, he has a list of pre-selected names to call on for questions for him to answer?  At one event he called on a person and after asking for her to stand up he said “I guess she is not here today.”  (Do you think by any chance that since he knew exactly who he was going to call on that he might also know the question that was going to be asked?)  Just food for thought.


Ray Judd


I remember some more …

    After I “slept on this” I remembered a few more old sayings. Some of these I don’t see how I could forget or should I say that I should forget? Oh well, I’ll let you decide that. See if any of these are familiar. I’ll start off with some words that apply to our health. If a person had bad breath, my grandmother would say they had “halitosis.” If someone had a bad headache, it was called a “sick headache.” A stomach ache was called “nuralgia.” A person who just simply felt bad had the “miseries.” Some poor soul in my family died from “galloping consumption.” I don’t recall who the relative was, and I have an even lesser idea what the disease is. Someone who wore glasses was sometimes teased and called “four eyes.”

    A person who gossiped was always the subject of ridicule. Phrases like “telephone – tell a woman” was one I remember. Another descriptive phrase I recall was “she would rather stand on her head and tell a lie, than stand on her feet and tell the truth.” My grandfather has an aunt who although wasn’t a gossiper, was known as a non-stop talker. He said she was “vaccinated with a Victrola needle.”

    Some phrases which although they were humorous were straight and to the point. For example “beauty is skin deep, but ugly goes straight to the bone” or how about “she’s as ugly as homemade soap.” While we’re on that subject some people were so ugly that they had to “sneak up on a mirror.”

    Now, how about some fondly remembered advertisements? I never hear these anymore but they are still vivid in my memory. Around Lynchburg when someone would see an Adkins Furniture truck, they would say “There goes a truckload of satisfaction!” The Schewel Furniture Co. said, “When two hearts beat as one, it’s time to buy furniture.”

    There are still a few sayings that I don’t understand. Here’s some examples: “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush,” “a cat on a hot tin roof” and “Don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.”

    So now I will just leave you with some good advice. “A miss is as good as a mile, but I’d walk a mile for a miss!”

Steve A. Everett


Coming together

    I’ve visited most of the churches here in Bedford and I have a suggestion I hope all will take to heart:

    Bedford has many issues that could be resolved or helped by all the churches coming together in one place and praying for them. Bedford has a high rate of teen pregnancies, as I understand one of the highest in Virginia,  as well as high unemployment and many other needs.

    When we call ourselves Christ’s, isn’t it time to forget about the small differences that separate and focus on what can unite – the love of Jesus.

    There are literally churches on almost every corner of Bedford. Isn’t it time to forget (once a month) what our particular name is attributed to a particular building, whether Presbyterian, Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Glory, Life, Outreach, Christian, and unite in prayer. Forget or step over the walls surrounding each church, join hands in love and pray for the needs of the entire community.

    I have met wonderful people in each church. Loving, kind people who have a heart for Bedford and want to do more.

    I don’t mean to offend, but there won’t be denominations in heaven, nor are denomination names in scripture — only the command to love all.

    Think of the message it would bring to the needs here. I firmly believe God will acknowledge and bless such a unity in prayer.

    Anyone willing to step up and offer their building as a meeting place for such prayer? Anyone?

    Having just completed a series of four books written by Bodie & Broch Thoene on the immigration of Trish to America during the potato famine, I leave these words written on the final page: “We must be careful that we never see God’s will in our own failure to do all we can to feed the hungry and clothe the naked.”

Beverly Danielson