Letters to the Editor

This is Viewpoints for Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016

Congresscare

Sen. Johnny Isakson would have us believe that the Affordable Care Act has been a disaster. It has provided 12 million middle and low income families with health insurance for the first time in their lives. Republicans have opposed the legislation from the first day and have done everything they could to sabotage it. They are now gleefully pointing to a few problems that they created and are yet again calling for the ACA to be stopped. Sen. Isakson, a Washington insider, works nine months of the year as a senator and, according to one Republican congressman, spends three to four hours a day fundraising for the GOP in a call center across from the Capitol. (Democrats are also required to do this for their party.)

I propose that congressmen and senators that oppose the ACA be required to give up Congresscare — the best health insurance in the world according to some reports. I would rather my tax dollars go to the ACA than go to pay for health care for part-time representatives who don’t want millions of families to have even minimum health care coverage. One of the senator’s ads accuses his opponent of being a hypocrite. Clearly Sen. Isakson would know.

Bill Clark, Macon

Another chance

The FBI has now found many emails on the computer of top Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin which are related to the Clinton emails. Her response? Like Hillary, “I don’t recall how they got there.

Well, I have a great number of old emails on my computer and I know how each one got there. Everyone came into my inbox and the next time I opened my email each one showed up so that I was aware it was there and showed exactly from whom the email was sent and the date it was transmitted. Clinton and all of her staff obviously have a serious, contagious disease. They go brain dead every time the word email is mentioned.

If the FBI permits them to get away with it this time it will show the FBI has become infected. Hillary is a criminal who has sold a U.S. government office for personal financial benefit and jeopardized national security by her handling of government emails. (It is sad to realize so many Americans don’t care). If by some chance she were elected now the tragedy won’t be how she got there but the fact she is there. Any law enforcement agency would have to be filled with people who were more stupid than a village idiot to let her get away now, or equally corrupt.

Bob Blackshear,

Warner Robins

Reason to drain the swamp

In reply to G. Warren Johnson’s letter on Sunday defining insanity as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results, here’s a good example of insanity: Raising already outrageous premiums over and over year after year and not only expecting existing customers to continue paying, but expecting more customers to sign up. What a great reason to drain the swamp.

Mike Ganas, Macon

Amendment 1

I thank the editors for their Oct. 23 recommendation of a no vote on Amendment 1. Please allow me the opportunity to talk about the amendment as written, and your editorial. The amendment indicates that the schools in question will be, “… determined to be failing through any governance model allowed by law.” The editorial’s “flawed College and Career Readiness Performance Index” is not specified in the amendment. If it’s a work in progress, as you say, then how is it flawed? Your editorial states that the Opportunity School District will “…take over 20 “failing” schools each year for five years.” The amendment is silent regarding the quantity of “failing” schools and duration. Could you provide a source for your quantitative reference? In your editorial you refer to the Opportunity School District making an “…end run around…local boards of education.” While the local school boards are elected bodies, Bibb County may have nine schools on the Opportunity School District eligible list. Dare I say the local oversight of these nine schools has been questionable for a prolonged period of time.

Your editorial alludes to the state pirating or carting away local tax money. Really? “Avast ye swabs! It’s Georgians off the port bow! They’ve sent a raiding party from their gold domed lair to plunder the Bibb County coffers! Arrrh!” Yes, that’s a bit hyperbolic, but so is your editorial. The amendment addresses “…the power to receive, control and expend state, federal, and local funds.” Homeowners of Bibb County are already paying a virtual tax on the values of their residential properties due to the perceived value of the local government schools. This virtual tax is added to property taxes assigned by the aforementioned local school board. For those without children in public schools, including those with children in private schools, that financial burden is significant.

What does our governor gain from this arrangement, if approved? Early in the process he accrues more power. Congratulations governor! You will may soon own control of a quantity of failing schools. Those schools aren’t simply going to straighten up and behave in a studious and accomplished manner by simple edict. The governor, who is elected, and his Opportunity School District, whose employees are not elected, may be judged by the voters on the perceived behavioral performance of the students in those schools. Naturally, the voters may reward or punish elected officials with their votes based upon their judgments.

Existing local teachers aren’t necessarily evil or inept, any more than local students are saintly urchins. Amendment 1 is apparently an attempt to change students behavior in some “failing” government schools for the better. There is no panacea. I am a voter, and taxpayer, that is willing to vote yes. It seems evident to me that if you keep doing what you’re doing, you shouldn’t expect different results.

Larry Williams, Macon

The legislation behind Amendment 1 is Senate Bill 133, it can be found at http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/20152016/153000.pdf

Editors

Georgia implications

This article on Medicare www.charlotteobserver.com/opinion/op-ed/article110900762.html expansion deserves posting in your newspaper because it also has implications for the health of Georgians and the state’s workforce and economic development.

Robert E. Harrison,

Athens

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