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Clinton's Speech on Health Care

September 29, 1993

* In response to "Clinton Unveils Health Reform," Sept. 23:

I note the President Clinton's speech on health care relied upon anecdotes and generalities to secure our trust. Since a nation of 250 million can supply countless anecdotes to any purpose, these touched my heart but not my mind. The President warned us "we will have to pay," then assured us that the greater cost will fall to "business." We were not encouraged to think that "business" managers will take into account the cost of providing me insurance when they decide whether the work I might provide is worth the cost of my labor. Then, "small businesses" will be subsidized. By whom we were not told.

It has been said that "the devil is in the details." But even without them I can see here one hell of a principle: that ever more of this country's wealth and resources will be channeled through the government. Certainly (since I am unemployed and uninsured), such a plan will benefit me in the short run. However, I fear for the long term. Paradoxically, the more "rights" that are defined for me, the fewer freedoms I am left to enjoy.

CHARLES WILSON HEWGILL

Anaheim

* A brave, bold and provocative move to provide every American with affordable health care could only have come from the empathetic, intelligent and educated mind of Democratic President Bill Clinton and his equally talented wife, Hillary. This promising gambit on health care will eventually infuse benefits to society reasonably foreseeable to be generated from a healthier, happier and hence more productive American population.

Furthermore, a minor medical condition need no longer go untreated until it becomes a major, complicated and costlier operation perhaps paid for with taxpayers' money. Clearly, there are more forces at work than mere "liberal" altruism molding this health care policy.

GEORGE C. BALDERAS

Corona

* The Republicans' insistence about "choice" has the overtones of Marie Antoinette's "Let them eat cake."

While Americans are starving for affordable, available medical care, insurance and drugs, our elitists are babbling about choice. How much choice does anybody really have when our doctor refers us to an unknown specialist (71% of all physicians)?

As for costs--where was Congress when we were spending billions and billions for unneeded defense?

DAN LEVIN

Beverly Hills

* Our schools must be doing a rotten job when it comes to teaching simple arithmetic. There are actually a great number of people in this country (some in high places) who believe that you can provide an additional 37 million people with health care without raising taxes. Pathetic!

HENRIETTA D. ROYCE

Arcadia

* While I certainly applaud the President's health care plan, I feel it does not go far enough. He leaves in place the insurance companies that caused most of our health care problems. We need a Canadian-type system, designed to the needs of the U.S.

Bear in mind the Canadian system is not a government giveaway as some would have you think. It is paid for by money, money that you would ordinarily be paying in premiums and co-payments.

IRA J. HORN

Studio City

* For whatever health care legislation enacted, the American people should demand that their representatives and senators be made to live under the same rules and regulations that the rest of us have to live under. Quite possibly then, a fair and equitable system will be established for all of us.

GENE DORIO MD

Newhall

* Why is it that the same people who are willing to carry a health security card that entitles them to free medical care find it so personally degrading to carry an ID card that verifies their citizenship in the country that gives them this benefit?

CHARLES JOYCE

Lake Forest

* I suggest a correction to your Sept. 23 editorial regarding Clinton's health care reform package. You said, "Employers would contribute about 80%, workers about 20%." This should read, "Workers will, as always, contribute 100% of the premium (20% directly, and 80% indirectly through their employer)." This indirect tax business is an old ploy, commonly used by politicians to avoid having to bite the bullet. It is so misleading that it amounts to a lie.

Of course, in the end, workers always pay all taxes, always have and always will. That's just basic economics.

JOHN HAMAKER

Laguna Niguel

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