A toxic prescription for health care
Dr. Bush's prescription for heath-care reform is a disaster. As though the medical system in this country were not already shot through with mismanagement and sky-high prices, his Mickey Mouse plans are clearly designed to expand the business and profits of one non-deserving group: the insurance industry.
What the people of the United States have needed for a long time is a version of the Canadian cradle-to-grave health-care system. And they don't need a middle-man insurance industry thrust between them and their doctors.
Simply extend the current Medicare system to cover everyone, refine the already existing controls on acceptable expenses, send the bills directly to the government and that will be that.
It can be paid for by a surtax on all personal and business income, which would be less expensive than the current system, which lines the pockets of the insurance companies, and it would be far less expensive than this ill-conceived plan to use tax money to pay them even more.
Dan Rodricks' Feb. 3 column about Baltimore County no longer picking up the tab for nurses in private and parochial schools should have mentioned that the county subsidizes about 886 employees who drive to work alone by paying them $21 per month toward the $55 per month parking fee in the county Revenue Authority garages. This subsidy costs the county taxpayers roughly $400,000 per year.
There are other perks: About 60 employees use a county-funded van pool service to ride to work each day, and another 164 employees commute in a subsidized car-pooling program. Participants must drive three people in their own cars to be provided with free parking. The riders pay the driver to help pay for the gas.
It is just a matter of priorities. The Hayden administration decided that it is more economical to take the nurses out of private schools than stop the perks for county employees.
These perks are paid for with taxpayer dollars, approved by the County Council, a number of whose members were swept into office by a taxpayers revolt. This is the kind of austerity that will drive a taxpayer bankrupt.
William H. Sunderland
Local, state and national government today is out of control. Election-year rhetoric cannot erase the years of damage done. Time is of the essence and corrective measures should be put into effect now. Let's not prolong human misery for the sake of coming election results.
Tony G. Picha
Unfair to the poor
One of the most pathetic sights to observe is a family being placed out on the street because of its inability to keep up with house or apartment payments.
The people who perform this task walk into the house or apartment. They gather up all the personal possessions there and literally throw them in the street ` regardless of their value. Once in the street, the majority of the property is destroyed; sometimes it is stolen by the neighborhood vultures.
Imagine working hard just to acquire, in some cases, basic articles of furniture, only to have them totally eliminated within a matter of hours!
We must pass a law that says that if property is removed by officials, they are responsible for its safe keeping.
Edmund W. Huppman
Will Trump run?
Sonny Bono, Tom Laughlin and Clint Eastwood have chosen politics as a second career. We have also had football players, movie stars and basketball players who have gone into politics. In Atlantic City, there is a man who has three casinos with his name on them. Will we ever see a casino owner run for political office?
In regard to Wiley Hall's Feb. 4 column, in which he blasts the memory and statuary of Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney, it occurs to me that having sat at the apex of the American judicial system should qualify Taney as man of stature in his beloved Baltimore.
In Mr. Taney's defense, we must remember that he was a product of his time. The common thought of the day was that slavery was legal. We must also remember that Justice Taney did not author and sign the Dred Scott decision single-handedly; there were several other justices who concurred with the majority opinion.
Where, might I ask, is Mr. Hall's hue and cry against George Washington, Thomas Jefferson or even John Carroll of Carrollton? They were all slave owners while the framers of the Declaration of Independence were penning those memorable words: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." Would Mr. Hall have us remove the first statue to Washington that stands on Charles Street at Monument?
Past wrongs should be left in the past if this nation is to ever heal.
Julius Westheimer said in The Evening Sun Feb. 3, "You neve know how dirty your hands are until you peel a hard-boiled egg or go into politics." Westy, look at your hands after having held the "Ticker" page in your hands for the time it takes to read your column! Now that is dirt!
Margaret G. Orman