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Letter: Rep. Green — find ways to build, not tear down

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I read Rep. Steve Green’s denunciation of the Affordable Care Act, and wondered if anyone could truly believe his political reading of the ACA. Regurgitating the party line about what is not working, how rates would go up, and how the ACA imposed “a layer of bureaucracy” between our doctors and ourselves, he adds nothing as an alternative.

Only tear down, not build up seems to be his mantra and all that his party offers us.

Rep. Green, do you really believe that people with pre-existing conditions should be uninsurable? Do you really believe that in our pre-ACA insurance system rates have not gone up precipitously in recent years? Do you really believe so little in the common good which our Founding Father’s so believed in that a 1.5 percent or even 3.5 percent increase in the tax on  policies is too high a price to pay for all Minnesotans to have health care insurance?

Do you really believe that we should have tens of thousands of Minnesotans and tens of millions Americans without medical insurance? We who are lucky enough, privileged enough to have good health care insurance presently foot the bill for the expensive emergency room treatment when desperate people that have no insurance must seek the only medical care open to them. Does that make economic sense?  Are you suggesting that we continue to embrace our present system in which this is true?

Do you really think that young people who have not been able to launch their own careers should not be able to stay on their parent’s health insurance until age 26? Do you really believe so little in the common good that you think young people, mostly healthy, should selfishly stay out of the ACA markets and throw off-balance the costs of health care for everyone?

Do you really believe there should be insurance policies that tie people to dead-end jobs because their health care insurance is not portable?  Do you really believe that these young people think that there will never come a time when they are older and need younger workers and citizens to balance their more expensive care?

Do you really believe that left to their own devices, insurance companies would insure all citizens and and keep rates low? Do you really believe that the ACA website is the only website that ever that had troubles in its launch? (How about President Bush’s launch of the Medicare prescription drug? Or, most any private sector website tech launches?)

The botched roll out of the ACA website is truly unfortunate for all. The cancellation of policies is as well, for it frightened so many of us. But the reason these policies were cancelled is that they were substandard, and not inclusive.

Whether one agrees with this vigilance in protecting citizens from the insurance industry, are you really satisfied letting the insurance industry dictate your health care, who can be insured, what your doctors can and cannot do, or at least what and how much they will be paid for procedures? This may be the crux to the whole issue.

And as for not trusting our government to manage health care as well as insurance companies, we who are lucky enough to be covered by Medicare (which your party also vigorously opposed and now supports) know how false the charges are that the government cannot manage health care.

Further, if you compare our present medical system to the medical systems abroad, or to the north in Canada, you will see that our present system, rather than being the best in the world, is in the middle of the pack on most every index save for medical innovation. And, rather than spending over 20 percent of our gross national product on health care, these nations who cover everyone spend anywhere from 11 to 18 percent, trillions of dollars less than the US presently spends.

Rep. Green, serve your constituents, not your party only. Tell the truth. Think about the common good. Find ways to build up, not tear down. — Howie and Linda Anderson, Ponsford

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