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One moment, please... Universal health care and social security


Fri, Apr 2nd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

As I visit with people throughout Fillmore County, I get mixed reviews about the passage of the health care reform bill.

More often than not I hear concerns for how the Democrats and Republicans use political manuevurs such as this as a measure for displaying power -- more interested in winning than listening to the people who voted them into office. And, this happens in both political camps, whether you like elephants or donkeys. I can't agree more with these statements. There appears to be a lot of ego involved on both sides of the fence.

In addition, I hear concerns for how this will impact small town business owners who fear the imposition of health care costs will drive them out of business. As with anything, additional expense to small town local businesses drives up their overhead which in-turn forces them to raise their rates to consumers. Increased rates can encourage consumers to explore other options, possibly driving to bigger cities such as Decorah, Rochester or Winona with hopes of saving a buck or two. I've heard this concern expressed over and over.

One thing I am finding is that there is a lot of speculation, since everyone doesn't have enough time in their busy schedules to heartily delve into the intracasies of the bill.

There is much dependence on hearsay and media interpretation.

I would even go as far as to say that a good percentage of our elected officials who voted for or against the health care reform bill probably didn't read and interpret the documentation of the health care reform bill in its entirety. I have no proof, only my gut. Like a scientist in a laboratory, everyone goes into a situation with a pre-conceived notion with a hopeful outcome. I have no doubt that the interpretation of this political venture clouded the judgement of many. It was more about winning.

A Google-search of "health care reform bill" generates "about" 20,900,000 results. Whether fact or opinion, there's a lot of information at our fingertips.

As a 36-year-old husband and father, I certainly have a lot of questions and concerns, as well.

According to a March 25, 2010 New York Times article titled "Social Security to See Payout Exceed Pay-In This Year", the latest projections show that the social security program will not exhaust its funds until about 2037. The current shortfall stands to reason since a highe .....
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Corporations and democracy

Fri, Apr 2nd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Historians indicate that the Roman Empire fell in 476 A. D. and left in its wake untold devastation and political chaos.

Likewise, The United States of America, as a democracy, ceased to exist on December 12th of the year 2000, when five Rep ..... 
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The Mess Our Politicians Created

Fri, Mar 26th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Bobbie Sauer, Sr.'s, response to my last letter was in many respects accurate and factual. But, to define why this recession occurred and to assign blame where it belongs, it was completely useless. My "shoddy historical basis" is, in fact, incomplet ..... 
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Who should solve the health care problem?

Fri, Mar 26th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Currently, all of the political minds in Congress are of the same mindset that health care reform is needed. Everyone understands that health care in our country has grown needlessly expensive, and that some who want coverage cannot afford it. The o ..... 
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Bipartisanship requires work and will

Sat, Mar 20th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

After seven hours together at their recent health-care forum, President Obama, congressional Democrats and congressional Republicans emerged no closer to an agreement than when they started. It was as fine a tutorial as you could want on why true bi ..... 
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Ready, fire, aim

Fri, Mar 5th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but not their own facts." Daniel Patrick Moynihan

I always knew my political and community outlook was at variance with Mr. Gudmundson but don't remember anything quite as jarring as his last effort ..... 
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One moment, please...

Fri, Mar 5th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

As I witness the usual dichotomy of our state government positioning our local economy in the passenger seat of an on-going, overwhelming financial crisis, I beg the question, "What can we control?"

Whether talking about local government aid ..... 
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One moment, please... Survivor: The Pilot Mound Series

Mon, Mar 1st, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Last week, I took a break from writing anything political. Now, I'm back in the saddle and clopping full speed ahead. I have two subjects to discuss but only enough space in the newspaper for one of them this week. You'll get this one now in today's ..... 
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Enough Is Enough

Fri, Feb 26th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

When President Obama advocated nuclear energy, offshore drilling and research to provide clean coal technology as solutions to our increasing energy problems, I winced. Granted, he also advocated the use of alternative energy resources. When he pred ..... 
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