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Obama's plan for healthcare reform

June 04, 2007

Re "Obama takes on healthcare," May 30

The cost that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) promises for his sketchy healthcare plan has the hollow ring of a dream-world estimate. The only guarantee in his plan is disastrous cost overruns. His lack of experience becomes more evident every day.

JOHANNA DORDICK

Los Angeles

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Like a child who hides coins in his shoe rather than confront the bully who continually steals his lunch money, the leading Democratic candidates have rejected a single-payer plan in fear of retribution from the insurance industry.

Obama and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) know that a single-payer plan would provide real coverage for all and save money. Proposals that would have taxpayers fund most of the bill for high-cost patients but still permit insurance companies to collect premiums from the rest should be non-starters. We need leaders, not capitulators. We're fed up with putting coins in our shoes.

GERALD GOLLIN

Redlands

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Re "A healthcare idea's second life," Opinion, May 30

On improving healthcare access, Ronald Brownstein asks what he calls an "intractable" question: Who pays for it? We're already paying for it and at ever-increasing cost. We're paying for it as individuals if we can afford insurance or are lucky to work for a company that still provides it. We're paying it for it as taxpayers, underwriting care for those who don't have insurance, working or indigent. We're paying for it as a nation. This cost burden continues to undermine our competitive ability against nations that provide healthcare, which are all of our developed competitors.

By raising the question, Brownstein evokes a Pavlovian response to concepts that are arguably a subliminal of the American body politic, ideas of supposed "big government" and seeming socialist structures. Framing the issue of providing healthcare and funding it efficiently in this manner are frankly imprudent and undermine ever developing a productive dialogue. It plays right into the hands of those who profit and seek to continue -- monopoly insurance and drug company cartel/corporations.

In this sense, there are no effective solutions or proposals on the table from those named and currently vying for nomination to public office, and that is because they all seek to involve and placate those same corporate entities.

CHARLES POPER

Costa Mesa

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