LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Quick fixes for Medicare will not address inherent problems

Friday, November 30, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CST; updated 9:04 a.m. CST, Friday, November 30, 2012

As the fiscal decisions significantly impacting our country approach quickly, I would like to spend a moment discussing the threats to cut Medicare.

In spite of our bloated military budget that has surpassed all other countries in the world, we have maintained an isolated focus on budgetary concerns regarding programs like Medicare. This fixation on reducing expenditures on Medicare and subjecting our health care to the “free hand” of the market is based on the ideological premise that we should have smaller government, or no government at all, involved in our most vital societal decisions.

One measure claims that increasing the age of qualification would reduce the amount of expenditures, but what would it accomplish for our collective well-being? The only need such cuts address is Medicare’s cost, not its underlying function.

Medical costs are a huge burden for American families, and the uncertainty of future coverage increases this strain. People are more than dollars and cents — the overwhelming focus on these social programs’ cost has reduced the discussion to a matter of monetary concerns.

The focus should not be limited to reducing the amount of people qualified for care. Instead, we should make Medicare stronger for the tens of millions of Americans who need it.

Andrew Bisto is an MU student studying sociology.

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Jimmy Bearfield November 30, 2012 | 11:25 a.m.

"People are more than dollars and cents"

Yes, but the money to pay for their care has to come from somewhere. Would you be willing to go through more than a decade of training if you knew that with a single payer calling all of the shots, you'd never make more than $50K?

(Report Comment)
frank christian December 1, 2012 | 10:05 a.m.

This guy is going to college to learn this? When he started off with "our bloated military budget", I thought aw, yeah! and clicked on. But to be fair I came back - and read what I had expected.

Why can these liberals never address the costs? (This one did, only to tell us, we should ignore them.) I hope he is not borrowing money for this education. There are dozens of leftist sources that spray this same message every day, free of charge.

(Report Comment)
hank ottinger December 2, 2012 | 10:06 p.m.

And I suppose, Mr. Christian, you were all wisdom and light when you were an undergraduate. At least Mr. Bisto has the courage and motivation to write a letter to a newspaper, expressing his concerns, something far too few students do.

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frank christian December 3, 2012 | 9:55 a.m.

HO - Quite right, I suppose. I would have written only, what I had been taught, as did this writer.

The difference as I poorly tried to explain, is in what we have been taught. In the fifty's, not yet having been exposed to every liberal pipe dream that, might allow extraction of taxpayer money from government, (only in the name of help for the masses, of course),we had a deeper, broader attachment to reality. We had seen and were truthfully told about the fascism and communism of Hitler and Stalin. Even then we could read and hear that "no external force could ever destroy this freest country ever. The destruction of the U.S.A. will come from within.", the reality of today.

(Report Comment)
Tony Black December 4, 2012 | 12:32 p.m.

Ah, the 50's. The GI bill , high taxes, the good old days.

(Report Comment)
Michael Williams December 4, 2012 | 3:36 p.m.

I wonder what the "deductions" were, and how many REALLY paid "high taxes"?

I wuz just a young tyke and don't remember, so I'm hoping you'll remind me.

(Report Comment)
frank christian December 4, 2012 | 8:03 p.m.

Yeah, the fifties! Kids were not watching video games centered upon people killing other people and adults were not doing it,actually, on a daily basis. Some half wits are glad those days are gone.

(Report Comment)
Michael Williams December 4, 2012 | 8:34 p.m.

Frank: And immunizing myself from all sorts of bad things by playing and, probably, eating dirt and gawd-noz what else. If I didn't need a bath when I got home, I was having a bad day.

Unlike the sterility today, complete with antimicrobial counter top washes. Gosh, that woman the other day who was worried about fluoride in water sure has a lot of unnecessary worrying in her future, worry well-beyond what is warranted. Better she be more worried about whether her food is prepared and cooked properly plus how that idiot driver isn't slowing at the intersection she's approaching.

Humans are notoriously poor assessors of risk. That story was a prime example of this trait. An internet science education isn't worth much, methinks.

I spent more time in the woods, up in trees, and in the creek than anything else. Can't believe I made it this long!

No asthma, either.

(Report Comment)
Michael Williams December 4, 2012 | 8:40 p.m.

Frank: I remember in the early '80s, employees where I worked would bring their pistols and shotguns so we could target practice after closing time.

Just outside the City of Columbia limits.

Don't remember any problems, tho. I can't remember a single GSW, although there were a few sore shoulders and ears that rang for a few dayz from 357s and 44s.

Don't try that now unless you like jail food.

(Report Comment)
frank christian December 4, 2012 | 9:29 p.m.

Mike - They don't want to talk about this! You refer to the "dark ages"! This was a time when gun ownership was a given. (I bought my first weapon, a shotgun, when I was fifteen. The sporting goods clerk and me, offering the price in cash were the only ones concerned. I showed it to my parents when I got home. I was criticized soundly, by my father for spending that much for a "gun"). Returning to Columbia in 1955, I tried to register a hand gun purchased on base in the USAF, as told to do by those authorities and was laughed out of the Boone County Sheriff's office. Not necessary! Guns were guns, were guns. No one thought of trying to harm another with one, except the few that were quickly identified, isolated, accused, convicted and punished, not for the thought, but for the action. Should we suppose that the mothers, without their sons and now, with the "drive by's" of today, the sons without their mothers and relatives, would not prefer those "good old days" to this?

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