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Follow-up regarding health care legislation

I want to thank Virginia Anderson for her June 9 letter, and the person who made the comments that were published in the Clarion Calls column.

As a professional writer and a published author, I never engage in misinformation. All my information has come from extensive research in newspapers and Internet news sites. I cross-reference all the information I find and usually quadruple check my facts before I write anything. Every fact I have put forth can easily be verified through information that is readily available on the Internet.

I wholeheartedly agree with Ms. Anderson that all those with pre-existing conditions, those who have lost insurance coverage due to illness and those who choose to have routine medical screenings should be able to obtain and keep the insurance they need or want. On the surface, the health care reform law fulfills those needs and appears noble and well-intentioned, but the Obama administration has callously disregarded the will of the American people in crafting the law. We were not given a choice in how the law was written or instituted, and few knew the law's contents before it was even voted on. Nancy Pelosi's audacious statement that "We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it" illustrates that the Democrats were determined to shove their will onto the public and had no regard as to anyone else's opinion. Regardless of any good intentions there may have been in the legislation, the end never justifies the means, and this is not how America works. Regardless of the party or the type of legislation, if one party forces their will and shuts out the other party, disallowing the proper bipartisan discussions that should take place, the end result is a piece of corrupt legislation.

When Ms. Anderson, at 85, my 82-year-old mom, my 101-year-old great-aunt and all of America's cherished elderly go to a doctor or a hospital, they should have peace of mind in knowing their care will not be rationed under Obamacare, but the stark evidence is that rationing will take place. The 15-member Independent Payment Advisory Board will be assembled this year, and Medicare will be officially capped. Government bureaucrats will decide, as I previously stated, the amount of resources that will be allocated to Medicare. In a 2009 interview, Dr. Donald Berwick, a supporter of Britain's government-run health care system, said, "The decision is not whether or not we will ration care; the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open." Dr. Berwick is President Obama's nominee to head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Certainly, insurance companies have denied claims and needed treatments to policy holders, but under Obamacare, lives really will be at stake through government-sanctioned rationing.

The 2014 mandates are not a matter of personal "inconvenience" for many families; those mandates are a financial impossibility. I am genuinely concerned what will happen to people who can't pay the insurance premiums or the fines; the subsidies won't help when families simply can't come up with any more money. Not everyone will qualify for the hardship exemption, and when the government mandates that people buy coverage and they can't, solving the "injustice" of the health care problem has become an outright cruelty for those people.

We were told that people who already have health insurance would be able to keep that insurance. That's no longer necessarily true. Companies like John Deere, Verizon and AT&T have calculated that by dropping their employees' health insurance and paying the government fines of $2,000 per employee, their savings, as in the case of AT&T, will yield a profit of $1.8 billion. Many employees may be left on their own to purchase their insurance. This point was really driven home to me in a conversation I had with a close relative, who is the CFO, and a CPA, of a school system in northern Indiana. He told me that in 2014 when the mandates kick in, he did not see a way for his school system to be able to afford the health insurance for the employees at all.

Regarding the 1099s, the taxes and fees from this mandate could cost America's businesses an additional $17 billion, one reason that the National Federation of Independent Business, a nonprofit, non-partisan organization, has joined in the lawsuit with the now 20 states challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.

Truth is often too harsh for many people to face; it is human nature to turn away from that which is ugly. However, I cannot in good conscience stand idly by and remain silent now that I have learned the reality about Obamacare, or, if you prefer, the health care reform law. I wrote these articles because I realize many people do not have the time to research, or they lack access to the Internet and its resources. I support health care reform, but I support it done fairly, humanely and constitutionally. Someday, America may have the real health care reform it needs, but we cannot achieve this goal until Obamacare is repealed and those who voted for it turned out of office.

LINDA SHAFER, English, Ind.
June 23, 2010

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    Ms. Schafer
    July 08, 2010 | 06:34 PM

    I agree with Ms. Schafer. Her article was dead on. People need to wake up and see what is really taking place. Thank You, Ms. Schafer for for your article. Your article was well researched and now is all over the cable news stations...well at least one of them. Robert Gibbs did he best to throw it back into the reporters face that asked him the question about Mr. Berwick. Thank You again for your GREAT article.

    Libby Raufeisen, Eckerty, In.

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