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Letters to the Editor

May 27, 2009

Brits have good system



To the editor:

After reading Barbara Murphy's letter in the paper I wonder why people live longer in England - or for that matter in any other developed countries - than Americans do.

Is it just an accident? Of course not, it is because medical care is always available and everyone can afford it, so they go to the doctor when they need to and get fabulous service. In contrast, in the U.S., almost 20,000 people die prematurely every year because they wait too long to go to the doctors. Then again, how about the 47 million people who have no health insurance - shouldn't we feel just a little sad for them?

I am very well informed about the British National Health service, and in contrast to what Murphy says, the care is more than good. Why, doctors still make house calls, imagine that! And the district nurse knows all her "old folks" and loves them to death, literally and figuratively. Anyone who says that the Brits don't get good care for their money, really knows nothing about the system.

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The statistics on controlling debilitating diseases such as diabetes are much better in the UK. My wife's cousin in the UK has early-onset diabetes and she is pushing 70 now, and is a beautiful, healthy person. But she still checks her blood every day and gives herself a shot when she needs one.

Contrast that to a friend in Martinsburg, W.Va., who lost her vision, and a man who was in therapy with my wife learning how to use his prosthesis on his leg and told us that his brother had lost both of his lower legs.

The benefits of a single-payer health plan are too numerous to cover in this letter, but we could mention that the U.S. prides itself on having the most mobile workforce in the world, so it would be nice if we didn't have to change insurance companies and, worse yet, not make beneficial moves because they don't trust the new companies' health care plans. Please, if you don't believe me, take a trip to England - if you get sick you will get care, no questions asked. And the prices of airline tickets are smashing right now, so enjoy!

Donald Shaw
Shepherdstown, W.Va.




Improving our health



To the editor:

No reform is needed if health care is turned over to all Americans. Americans can eat, can sleep and can walk (most of them). They simply need know-how to eat, how to sleep and how to walk. All that is needed is a refresher course, since most have forgotten how they learned to eat, sleep and walk. Most only know of their bad habits and what created them.

People young and old need use what they have as the principal component part (it's in their brain), and a special low-cost tool to form good natural habits - eating, sleeping and exercising.

The habit lasts a lifetime with no methodology to develop, retain and sustain.

Health-care reform has received an element, a business model and a personal flow diagram, to reduce annual costs from the $300 billion to $500 billion or more per year. All of the quality care can be retained with a slight adjustment in accessibility.

The solution researched and developed during the last eight years is ready for a business to propagate across the country. It adds to all existing diet and health programs. Healthy people need significantly less health service and insurance pays are significantly less.

Dick Hockensmith
Harrisonville, Pa.




How to deal with North Korea



To the editor:

President Obama's knee-jerk response to the North Korean test of a nuclear weapon is ill-considered and nonproductive. A far more productive response would be to acknowledge North Korea's right to provide for its own national defense.

North Korea is a sovereign nation. The North Korean people have a right to provide for their own national defense by whatever means they deem prudent and necessary. Their leaders have the responsibility to carry out this essential function of government. The Constitution of the United States of America acknowledges this necessity by including providing for national defense among the limited number of items for which Congress is specifically granted authority.

A specific foreign policy announcement that the USA recognizes and respects the sovereign right of all nations to provide for their national defense should reduce the perceived need for other countries to seek weapons of mass destruction. Such an announcement sends a message that the U.S. does not intend to invade or occupy other nations. Withdrawal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan is necessary to back such a statement up with our actions.

The U.S. does not accept, nor should we accept, any limitations placed upon our ability to provide for our own security, except those that we have specifically negotiated in a treaty with one or more other nations. The policy announcement which I suggest does not specify, or limit, what our response may be to any perceived threat to our security by another nation.

An additional benefit of my suggested policy change is it would limit North Korea's ability to engage in nuclear blackmail in which they demand millions of barrels of oil in exchange for unenforceable promises to not develop nuclear weapons.

I call upon President Obama to withdraw his ill-considered condemnation of North Korea and to affirm our respect for the sovereign right of all nations to defend themselves.

Allen R. Loser
Hagerstown

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