Obamacare will lead to rationing
In his July 6 letter, Paul Mackinney mocked the tea party, asking, "Where are the death panels?" Mackinney and people like him should educate themselves and get their heads out of the sand.
Seniors are the largest users of American health care. Medicare is currently greater than $30 trillion in the red. By the end of the decade, there will be 16 million more people on Medicaid and estimated cuts of $500 billion in Medicare. There has to be rationing of health care.
Perhaps the new "death panels" will appear under Dr. Donald Berwick, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. He has stated that the United States must ration health care. Maybe they will appear in Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel's Independent Payment Advisory Board that decides what items will be cut if the program exceeds its monetary cap.
Obamacare has created 159 new boards, commissions and programs; these will move key decisions away from doctors and patients and toward government agencies and bureaucracies.
Americans have to wake up and vote out President Barack Obama and the Democratic majority in the Senate.
Two editorials offer confusing message
I read the July 11 editorial, and I don't understand how the editorial board can write both this piece and
The complaint about a "stealth tax" is basically an inadvertently good analysis of why Proposition 13 isn't working for the benefit of California since that's the type of thing that happens when states lose revenue. I'm also curious as to the message of this editorial: education, as well as after school/summer activities, is important, but not so much so that we should do anything as silly as actually paying for it.
That those "slashed social services" are usually put in place to help deal with situations like this are, I'm sure, beyond the point the Times want to sell to its customer base.
Doing the math on health care
Kim Dromlevicz (July 10) does not understand why millions of Californians who have health insurance are celebrating the recent Supreme Court health care ruling. I will try to explain it to her.
I agree with her that there is no free lunch. But if the U.S. spent on health care per capita only as much as Norway did, the second-highest-spending health care country in the world, we would save $2,890 per person, enough to buy a $10 lunch for every living person in this country for 289 days. Yet the life expectancy at birth of a Norwegian baby is higher than one born in the United States.
Life expectancy is one possible measure of the overall effectiveness of a health care system. Neither Norway nor the U.S. do particularly well, proving that the money a country spends on health care does not always mean better health care for its people. But other measures yield the same conclusion.
For those interested in facts rather than rhetoric, I recommend enrolling in the free online course http://class.coursera.org/healthpolicy-2012-001.
Professor of mathematics and computer science California State University, East Bay Pleasanton
Lafayette policy logically baffling
What manner of semirural, sustainable Lafayette is it that finds it necessary to ban roosters but permits gasoline-powered leaf blowers, even on "Spare the Air Days"?
Holder must realize war is already lost
I feel like sending Attorney General Eric Holder an email telling him to lay off.
It is no longer politically expedient for him to keep making a pretense of getting rid of marijuana. We've already lost the war. Don't let them exterminate pot as well as sex and rock and roll.
Madeline Smith Moore