Let’s work together on Obamacare
Roger Sorensen (Sept. 24 Pulse) appears to be making a case for how much more Obamacare will cost him, then admits that he will qualify for federal subsidies that will actually lower his monthly premiums.
What is he complaining about? He gets a great deal. Not to mention that the health care law will ensure he won’t have to worry that his benefits might be capped or that he’ll be thrown off his policy or that an illness might drive him into bankruptcy.
Those guarantees alone would be worth paying a lot more. He goes on to point out that his real complaint is the law will require higher-income people to pay for his coverage. In another letter in that day’s Pulse, Ken Engle doubles down on this complaint: People with jobs will be paying for the coverage of those without jobs.
Don’t these gentlemen realize that in a complex society such as ours we all pay for things we don’t directly benefit from? I no longer have kids in the public schools, yet I continue to pay property taxes that support the schools, for example. Indeed, even under private insurance, it is the healthy who pay for the costs of the unhealthy. That’s how insurance works, and that’s how a modern society works.
Yes, there are problems and we need to make changes to keep entitlement costs under control. But those who continue to criticize Obamacare need to realize that our current health care system is one of the most inefficient in the world. We all need to stop mindless criticism and get together to make the law work.
Randy Prier, Papillion
Obamacare another staggering cost
I’d like to introduce myself to Roger Sorensen and Ken Engle, who wrote about Obamacare (Sept. 24 Pulse). I’m one of those who will be paying for your health care.
I worked and saved for 30 years; my husband did so for 42 years. I received a notice from Blue Cross Blue Shield advising me that a “comparable” plan under Obamacare will cost 30 percent more in premiums and 42 percent more if I have a serious illness and have to pay all of the deductible.
I understand that lower-income Americans will benefit from subsidies, but Obamacare dumps another staggering cost onto a narrowing band of middle-class Americans. What part of this health care plan is “affordable” for me?
And by the way, in order to keep the cost as low as possible, I have to pick a plan with limited doctors, which means I can no longer go to the doctor I’ve seen for the past 20 years. Didn’t the president promise we could keep our health care plans and keep our doctors?
We do need to solve the health care crisis in this country, but Obamacare is not the answer.
Beth Brady, Omaha
Republicans are lacking in answers
The Republicans need to get off their high horse and stop bullying this country, the Democrats and the president. They don’t like the Affordable Care Act. We get it. Defunding the act or shutting the government down would not solve anything.
The Republicans are just whining because they didn’t get their way. They were asked to the table from the beginning to work together to create an Affordable Care Act that worked. They left the table. Now that it’s law, they still don’t want to compromise. They just want to scrap it.
And every time someone asks, “What’s your solution, how would you fix health care?” — they have no answers other than to stop the ACA. It’s a shameful display of childish, self-serving behavior.
Andrew Melichar, Omaha
Don’t forget one senator who voted ‘yes’
At this final hour before Obamacare goes fully into effect, let us not forget how it came to this. More important, let us not forget who voted for this: our former senator and statesman Ben Nelson.
It is obvious to me he made the wrong vote. It is also obvious to Sen. Nelson he made the wrong vote, as evidenced by his retirement.
So remember, when your health care premiums go up, or your provider tells you your plan has changed or is no longer available, think of ol’ Ben.
Ryan Flynn, Omaha
Fortenberry is right on food stamps
Nebraska Rep. Jeff Fortenberry is to be commended for breaking ranks with most of his fellow House Republicans in voting against legislation that would cut food stamps by about $40 billion over 10 years.
Fiscal restraint and periodic reform are necessary in response to an increasing number of recipients, but such actions should not be as severe as the bill proposes, especially to a program that helps the most vulnerable in society.
Any cost savings now would result in higher health costs in the future, and the cuts would deprive young children of the food that enables them to grow and learn, thus perpetuating the cycle of hunger and poverty.
One way of judging the greatness of a nation is to note the degree of compassion it shows those who are not able to make it on their own.
Harold Schmidt, Valley, Neb.
Catholics need to find some unity
It is encouraging to hear the latest comments by Pope Francis about the need for the Catholic Church to pay more attention to the poor among us. For too long, the church seems to have narrowed its vision to concerns about abortion and same-sex marriage.
This is not to say that these teachings should be ignored or abandoned. But the scandal of poverty, especially in the United States, should not be ignored. Poverty must be considered a pro-life issue.
Children, whether born or unborn, who cannot get adequate nutrition, housing, clothing, education or other necessities will most likely die sooner than others who are fortunate enough to have everything they need. Poverty, which can be prevented, deprives those children, their families and society of valuable individuals.
I have, sad to say, seen fellow Catholics who have said that social justice for the poor means nothing compared to the importance of stopping abortion and same sex marriage. And somehow there has been a split between “social justice” Catholics and “pro-life” Catholics. This needs to stop, and we need to all get together and express compassion for everyone.
Mary Louise McNeill, Omaha