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Byline: The Register-Guard

Health care system must change

There is no question that our health care system is failing us. Parts of the system are doing very well, thank you. Be thankful that so many are committed to action.

Big business, small business, labor, government, physicians, nurses and the public want effective change. Be glad for examples of efficient health care delivery systems around the world.

Our system compares badly with any of them.

What should we ask for? A political solution is needed. It may be single payer, as in Taiwan and as in our Medicare. It may use intermediaries to do the work of signing people up and paying bills, as in Germany. It could follow the model of Great Britain and our own Department of Veterans Affairs.

The costs and risks of caring for the ill need to be assumed by all, not by somebody else. Politicians, take note! We want the "U.S.A." health care system - "U" for universal; everyone is eligible, contributes and takes care of their own health. "S" for sustainable; there are enough hospitals, caregivers and dollars to keep it going forever. Costs are controlled. "A" for accountable; the system is accountable to the individuals, and the individual to the community.

Problems get fixed. The Oregon Health Fund Board will release its draft recommendations on health care system revision in August or September. Speak up on them. Ask for Health Care U.S.A.

Frank N. Turner, M.D.


Holocaust critics persecuted

In his rather hysterical June 20 letter, Bob Bussel decries any questioning of Holocaust history as a "profound act of intellectual fraud and moral bankruptcy," a "loathsome and repugnant monstrosity."

British writer George Orwell said that "who controls the past, controls the future," and our perception of past events alsoshapes the way we look at the world around us today. The Zionists understand this, and know that the story of the Holocaust is crucial to their power.

This is why such harsh measures are being exacted against those who ask too many questions. The Holocaust history seems so shaky that governments have to actually imprison people who openly question it.

Today, it's becoming more like the new state religion and, as in the Inquisition, people are being locked up again for questioning even the smallest detail of dogma - no matter what the evidence, no matter what the conflicting testimony or history. Anyone who breaches this faith will be deemed a "Holocaust denier," and punished accordingly.

Therefore, as I see it, the "standard" version of the Holocaust history simply cannot be trusted as long as they're jailing or otherwise punishing those who question it. To make jail sentences be your response to critics is exactly the same as getting up on a rooftop and shouting as loud as you can for all to hear: "I am lying!" Is anyone supposed to believe someone who, in effect, proclaims in this way that he's lying?



Think of effects on grandchildren

Recently, I read an article about one of my elected officials putting in grueling hours on the endangered species committee in Congress.

At first I thought that was great and, after all, he is a good, hard-working man. But then I started thinking about putting this time and energy to even better use and, bingo, it occurred to me that our representatives should put in the same amount of time and effort on the endangerment of our grandchildren.

Yes, please hear me out. Grandchildren could even be classified as a "special interest group."

As a grandparent, I am very concerned about their future as it pertains to Social Security, energy, medical costs, our legal system and rampant government spending - none of which gets the attention that endangered species get. I am concerned that our grandchildren will become endangered or, worse, indentured, if folks in Congress don't get off the dime.

I understand the different attitudes of both parties on these issues, but if the parties can't debate them, at least they could start discussing the direction in which this great country should be moving: more freedom and independence, or more socialism and dependency. Once the direction is determined, the other issues will tend to fall in line.

John Adamo


Broder's criticism rings hollow

Perhaps The Register-Guard should run an advisory at the beginning of David Broder's columns: "Warning: The opinions expressed in this column may be influenced by those who pay Broder."

After he confessed to not only violating The Washington Post's policies on journalists getting money from speaking to corporate groups with lobbying agendas, and after he was caught lying about it, David "The Dean" Broder questioned whether Sen. Barack Obama has "built up sufficient trust" with the voters. See "Obama's decisions could hamper him" (Register-Guard, June 23).

For the full story on Broder's perfidy, see

Broder should have published an apology rather than an attack on Barack Obama.

Michael Wells


Bush's war power is worst evil

George Will (Register-Guard, June 17) had to go stick his foot in his mouth again.

In an otherwise excellent commentary on the Supreme Court's ruling that Guantanamo detainees have the same habeas corpus right available to all others that the state imprisons, Will takes President Bush and Sen. John McCain to task for opposing this extension of the basic American civil right to challenge one's imprisonment in court.

Then he goes on to assert, "No state power is more fearsome than the right to imprison."

I disagree. Fearsome as arbitrary detention is, it pales next to the evil menu of power we have been served up the past six years - authorizing U.S. forces to bomb Iraq daily for the past 2,000 days, to kill Iraqis on the wrong side of the sectarian divide, and to allow the CIA to commit lethal "black operations" anywhere.

This illegal state of war has caused hundreds of thousands of deaths, mainly in Iraq, mainly at the hands of our troops. Indefinite imprisonment - even torture - is not as heinous as these deaths, including 4,100 U.S. combat deaths.

Surely Will knows this, but his ideological blinders prevent him from seeing it for what it is.

The executive branch's usurpation of war powers, constitutionally limited to a congressional declaration of war, is the crime of the century, and Will should know it.

Paul Prensky


The Democrats are no better

In response to Tom Erwin's June 23 letter, I feel the need to defend the Republican Party.

Coming from the Democrats, who gave us such fine presidents as Jimmy "Let's talk to terrorists" Carter (a man who, in my humble opinion, doesn't have two brain cells to rub together) and Bill "I did not have sex with that woman" Clinton and Al "You all need to save our planet while I live in my not-so-green-friendly mansion" Gore, Erwin's supposed notion that the GOP is doomed is just more left-wing bovine scatology. And please, let me just say this - the election hasn't happened yet!

Stop and think about it. As unpopular as President Bush is, he's still heads above the current (mostly Democratic) Congress, which has the honor of being the most hated and distrusted Congress on record.

As far as being a marginal party, well, if (God forbid) we actually get a Democrat in the White House, just remember, voting him in brought along higher taxes, higher gas prices, the stock market falling to the pits, immigration run amok, Iran stepping on us (as itdid with Carter), Social Security gone the way of the dodo and so on and so on.

Just think, we have two, count 'em, two senators running for the highest office in the land. Scary, huh? It's not a pretty sight.

Jeanne Ross


We've sold out for cheap goods

Cheers to Robert Sposato's June 27 letter.

Finally, someone is willing to personally step up and pay for something he values and believes is of immeasurable beauty: our coastline.

I get so tired of hearing how we can't solve anything in this country "because it may cause consumers higher prices." We've sold our souls and our citizenship for cheap consumer goods.

We need to admit, folks - by delaying the implementation of solutions to many of today's problems, we're only compounding the ultimate price, a price our children and grandchildren will very likely be unable to pay tomorrow.

Rudy Werner


Keep Rogue off limits to logging

With salmon fishery closures up and down the West Coast and emergency restrictions on salmon fishing in coastal rivers, it is refreshing to see Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Peter DeFazio taking action to protect the Rogue River, the largest producer of salmon and steelhead in Oregon.

Oregonians agree on the importance of improving and safeguarding our natural resources like the iconic Rogue. It's a move that would protect an investment in our future and our economy. Anglers from Oregon and all over the world are drawn to the Rogue and spend big bucks. Since Zane Grey's time, they have been drawn to the Rogue because it's healthy and productive, and these proposals would keep it that way.

These protections are a logical extension of the restoration that's going on up and down the Rogue River, including the removal of Savage Rapids dam on the main river; the notching of Elk Creek dam, an important tributary, and even a plan in the works looking at removal of Lost Creek dam.

Without these protections, a Bush administration plan to clear-cut the Rogue watershed would be allowed to move forward. Sen. Gordon Smith has in the past supported restoration of the Rogue, and I hope he will sign on in support of this great proposal.

I'm not against logging, but along the Rogue River? There are just some exceptional places we need to put off limits.

Matt Stansberry

McKenzie, Upper-Willamette

Chapter of Trout Unlimited


Pit screens were waste of money

Would the current occupants of Eugene's City Hall care to explain the gossamer fabric stretched over the fence by the library?

At $10,000, I would kind of expect something that you couldn't see through. I thought I saw some type of images on the fabric, but I would have to wait until near dark to be certain. Then again, after dark, what's the point?

Tangible spending would have gone either into someone's stomach (food bank) or into a few potholes (pick a street). Maybe this is the "bikini" theory - that if there is less there, it should cost more.

As city officials stew over what visitors think about our holes in the ground,we should do the math and figure what that Band-Aid actually cost us.

If the Olympic Trials visitors were around here for 14 days, it works out to $714 plus change per day to prevent them from seeing a hole in the ground.

David Wright

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Title Annotation:Letters Editorial
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jul 5, 2008
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