CNBC was collectively scratching their talking heads over Trump’s latest executive order that establishes The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity — which is essentially legalizing and expanding voter suppression. The motivation is obvious.
This gives Trump a stick and a carrot to keep the Republicans from defecting from his corner — the only thing saving him from impeachment. He can pitch it to Sen. Mitch McConnell, explaining how great it worked for Gov. Mike Pence in Indiana. The Supreme Court couldn’t find a single instance in which voter fraud happened in Indiana. However, Pence used the excuse of voter fraud to send armed Indiana State Troopers into the offices and homes of citizens in poor neighborhoods, seizing all of their records and computers and office equipment.
Trump can use this EO to guarantee Republican support of him will not hurt them at the polls next year, since they now have much greater control over who can and cannot vote. He can also use it as a stick, laying out how he can always flip his pit bulls to the other side. This suits his mind set and modus operandi.
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Sessions just reported about a step-up in penalties for minor convictions, which will just sharpen the teeth on the EO and aid with their voter suppression efforts. Our administration is not just pro-Russia, it is anti-American.
Single payer system
We are told that the future will hold continuing almost prohibitive costs for health insurance. There is little discussion as to what to do about the soaring costs. Facts are now readily available to show that America has the most expensive and least efficient medical insurance system of all developed nations. Yet, at the same time, we are told that we have the best medical system in the world.
Let’s examine how good our care is. Surely we have the shortest wait time for surgeries and medical procedures. Well, we don’t. We rank fifth in the world behind Switzerland, The Netherlands, The United Kingdom (yes, England) and Germany.
If the wait time is not our strong point with our system, surely our citizens should enjoy the longest life expectancy. But no, according to the CIA, in 2015, we actually ranked 42nd. If other nations have more efficient and less expensive health-care systems, how are they managing to do so much better than we are?
All the other developed nations offer universal health care — health insurance for all its citizens. They all have single public or government agency that has responsibility for all their citizens. This usually takes the form of a single payer system or a variation of a single payer system. A single government organization or quasi-government organization that can reduce wasteful shuffling of papers between medical facilities, insurance companies and the insured. Some such organizations set price limits on some medical procedures and conduct educational programs that function from the schools through adult life.
If we had universal health coverage some 600,000 families would not lose their homes through bankruptcies caused, according to a Harvard University study, in 72 percent of cases by medical expenses. Many of those forced into medical caused bankruptcies had medical insurance, but which proved to be insufficient.
Is a single payer system a radical concept? Pharmaceutical corporations and medical insurance companies would like you to think it is. But according to a book written just a few years ago entitled “The America We Deserve,” the author wrote “we should not hear so many stories of families ruined by health-care expenses. We must have universal health care. We need to reexamine single payer plans.” This author was right.
Who was the author of “The America We Deserve”? Who was the person urging us to have universal health care to reexamine new ideas such as a version of a single payer system? Was it Sen. Bernie Sanders? No. It was Donald J. Trump.
William D. Shilling Jr.,
Never too late
Obama entered the White House with no executive experience and eight years later he left in the same condition. No on the job learning. However, since Trump, it appears Obama has started to learn the art of negotiating. Imagine $400,000 for about an hour’s speech from someone who hasn’t demonstrated any unique skill or knowledge. Good negotiating!
Admittedly, there are many of us who wish he had taken his $400,000 annual salary as president and only devoted one speech’s time to national affairs. Net result, we’d be much better off. Anyway, thumbs up Obama. You have demonstrated it’s never too late to learn.
On the day of
If I could address the Warner Robins City Council (I live in the county) I would ask them “Why can’t the city’s Independence Day celebration at McConnell-Talbot stadium be held on Independence Day?”
We celebrate Christmas on Christmas Day, Thanksgiving on Thanksgiving Day, and so on. It would be nice to celebrate Independence Day on July 4. Most people have the day off and for the life of me I can’t understand why the city’s celebration has to be on June 30. It’s not even in the right month, for Christ’s sake.
Former First Lady Michelle Obama is out aggressively defending her school lunch program when surveys reveals (since its conception) 40 to 60 percent of school cafeteria food served nationwide is uneaten or partially eaten; in middle schools 85 percent of the food served is discarded and most vegetables are left on the tray. With an average of 30 minutes for lunch there’s no time for these students to eat an entire banana, orange or apple.
Her standardizing (socializing) school menus (to cultivate healthy eating habits) have students tossing $1,238,846,400 worth of food in the garbage annually.
Now add these statistics: 50 percent of our land is used to produce food and the growing process uses 80 percent of the fresh water America consumes; yet, 40 percent of the food produced goes uneaten. That’s 133 billion pounds of eatable food sent to the landfill annually and there’s widespread hunger in American. This is what Michelle Obama should have been fighting instead of initiating a program that made the problem worse. A problem that continues to be ignored.
Travis L. Middleton,