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Your Views: How about some common sense hope and change?
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America voted for an eloquent message of hope and change. Now that eloquent message has hit the factual reality that hope is not a strategy and change, in and of itself, is not necessarily an improvement.

Consider the reality of the recent change to the forecasted deficit for our nation’s budget. It was off by $2 trillion! If you were aiming for Atlanta and missed it by 2 trillion $1 bills laid end to end, you wouldn’t be in California somewhere, you’d be twice the distance away as our sun!

To call this spending money like a drunken sailor would be an insult to drunk sailors. This is not fiscal mismanagement. This is insanity. If this government goes forward and passes the current cap and trade and health care bill, the U.S. debt will be somewhere past the dwarf planet Pluto which is beyond insanity. There’s not a word for this utter lack of fiscal wisdom so I’ll make up one: It’s an "obamination."

Let’s change our hope into something useful: common sense. Let’s not be deceived again. For the crisis du jour, the president made his plea to Congress regarding health care. It was an impassioned speech and his spoken objective is noble in getting the 30 million uninsured Americans health care while not sacrificing quality of service or increasing taxpayers’ costs. It sounds almost too good to be true. It is.

The program’s estimated cost of $90 billion per year over the next decade appears to have been calculated by the same people who slightly underestimated the deficit by $2 trillion. What’s more outlandish is that the funding for this 10-year, $900 billion program is projected to be accomplished primarily by streamlining existing costs and reducing waste.

Name any government program in our country’s history that has accomplished such a feat. The post office and government-run Amtrak haven’t been profitable in decades; Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac went bankrupt, and ask any car dealer how "streamlined" the "Cash for Clunkers" program worked.

The government is simply not designed for cost efficiency. It’s like riding a mule in the Kentucky Derby. The only way it can win is to kill off all the competing horses which is what a government (or public) option would eventually do to the private sector.

Financially speaking, America is walking a tightrope without a safety net and we cannot afford another miscalculation in our spending. Reforming health care is important, but we must take the necessary time to analyze, debate and do it right. The economy, however, is far more an important and time-sensitive problem to solve.

We need jobs now! The stimulus package hasn’t stimulated much of anything and in the coming weeks an alternative "common sense" plan will be forthcoming (stay tuned). Our president should adjust priorities and adopt a slogan from a previous president, "It’s the economy, stupid."

Let’s get people working and the economy healthy first. To do otherwise would be an obamination.

Tom McAllister
Gainesville

Medicare isn’t the perfect insurance plan some claim
A recent letter to the editor praised the government insurance plan of Medicare. The writer must either have a plan other than the one I am on, or I have been having seeing phantom problems in dealing with the system.

A common phrase heard by Medicare insured retirees is, "sorry, the doctor is not taking any additional Medicare patients."

Another sad commentary is watching your current Medicare provider slowly but surely trying to ease you out the door. The reason is obvious: poor return of the doctor’s time as he or she provides you primary medical care.

We are marching toward a crisis in medical care in the country and extolling a plan that is springing leaks is trying to bail out a leaky boat. The writer from Alto needs to do a little more research.

Randy Wewers
Gainesville

Grandparents should have more rights of visitation
Every child is a precious gift from God. Not all grandparents are allowed to see or visit with their grandchildren.

Grandmas cry when they are not allowed to visit with their grandchildren. Grandmas and grandpas weep while their heart breaks. We pray and wait just for a little crumb of time to be tossed our way.

In Georgia, grandparents have no rights, and if you go to court, you will lose. Feelings will be hurt and may never heal. You’ll never recover.

This letter is for every grandmother and grandfather who is not allowed to see your grandchildren. Write your representatives and congressmen and urge them to change the state laws and ask for visitation rights to those precious grandchildren.

Many times, adult children are simply abusing their parents by asking them to keep sick grandchildren, diaper them, bathe them and keep them for a week at a time while the parents go off to sow their wild oats. Then they are crushed when these rebellious adult children choose to break the family ties and use the grandchildren as ransom for monetary rewards.

Sue Chase
Gainesville

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