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Your Views: Just say no to more federal entitlements
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Harold Lott’s column Thursday struck a chord with me. It only took reading the second sentence of the third paragraph to see how hypocritical he really is. Not only is it offensive to those with whom he disagrees, it’s simply wrong. Just because he doesn’t believe something doesn’t make it a "lie."

A "public option" for health care in this country scares the devil out of me because the federal government has a horrible record when it comes to running anything. Our budget deficit is already so large that most Americans cannot comprehend it and current federal entitlement programs are plagued with trillions of dollars worth of unfunded mandates. And now the president wants to add yet another entitlement program?

Consider this: Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security all are going broke. The U.S. Postal Service and Amtrak lose money every year. And yet the same government that couldn’t turn a profit selling whiskey in a house of ill repute (seriously; study the Mustang Ranch of Nevada, circa 1990) presumes to be able to cover 40-plus million more people with the same number of doctors, for less money than we’re presently spending, and without a reduction in the quality of care we currently enjoy. How much cognitive reasoning does it take to see this simply doesn’t add up?

Ronald Reagan once said, "The nearest thing to eternal life we will ever see on this earth is a government program." We cannot afford the ones we have now. Why in the world do we need to start another one?

Here’s an idea. Let’s get our nation’s fiscal house in order before we go further in debt "saving money" with another government handout.

I’m all for fixing the problems with health care costs in this country. At the same time, however, I don’t see how a 1,000-page, nearly incomprehensible bill like H.R. 3200 is going to do any good. I can’t help but believe the only reason this bill is so voluminous and was pushed so hard and so quickly is that the individual pieces comprising it couldn’t stand the scrutiny of the public on their own, nor would they be able to hold up under Mr. Lott’s "high-effort cognitive and rational debate."

Michael A. Caudell

Government takeovers are self-serving wealth sources
In the U.S., as it applies to money and banking, we rely on our U.S. Congress to invoke laws and the regulators to enforce the laws. We have the Federal Reserve that controls U.S. banks; the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation that insures bank deposits; Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac who own about 70 percent of U.S. home mortgages; and others that are backed by the government but operate within their own system.

All of those companies could be placed into bankruptcy if they should fail, but this is not likely because of their ties to the government. These companies have the ability to devalue all the holdings of the public by withholding money, forcing banks to not fund their clients and to foreclose and liquidate assets at much discounted values. This is what has happened to date. Who benefits and why would they do this?

If the federal government decides to bring in more dollars, it could establish more fees and increase taxes. But when it reaches a certain level of taxation, it is political suicide. To change the system or nationalize, it needs a much larger share of revenue. This can only be achieved by reducing the market’s money supply and pulling in the assets of others.

Without money, no business can exist for long. If the markets are shut down for any length of time, it creates a domino effect and many businesses fail. With no banks allowed to work with clients or fund those businesses, assets held by the businesses are liquidated at very low values.

Regulators and the banks become the source of the problem because they devalue and poison the entire community, forcing even more failures. When the FDIC steps in on a failed bank, it writes down the assets and auctions off the paper for pennies on the dollar, or guarantees up to 100 percent of the loan values to a purchasing bank. This is where we are today. You may ask, why would the U.S. government allow these short sales?

If you wanted to nationalize, it is easier if you can hit large stock companies like banking, insurance and automotive industry. If you want to transfer wealth, you would target productive industries such as construction and real estate.

There is an auction from Aug. 3 to Sept. 1 with more than $1 billion of loan assets from 15 failed banks being sold by the FDIC as receiver for those institutions. Only banks can bid. It is sad because they will be lucky to produce 5 cents on the dollar. I know the FDIC has refused much higher offers for those assets, but would not work with the customers who signed the notes. I am one of them.

What I believe to be criminal is that they intentionally pulled back on the money, knowingly devalued the market place, became unfair competitors and, after destroying the marketplace, then took their customers’ assets to sale for little to nothing. This destroyed values for every American with property.

If this isn’t theft, what is? Why not fund and work with their original customers who understand their assets and the values that support their communities?

David A. Derusha