Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sen Rockefeller Has Outlived His Political Usefullness

I love politics, but this administration is driving me insane! Our wonderful country was established in such a simple manner. A Constitution-that most people have no clue what it says, was established.. and can and should hold true 200+ years later. Why do we no longer find it relevant? Why has government changed its position? How did it become so large?

About a week ago, I sent Sen Rockefeller (D-WV) an email stating my opinion on the Healthcare Bill. Don't get me wrong, it would be wonderful if everyone had health insurance. I DO NOT! But when did it become the job of government to provide me with medical care? Nowhere in the Constitution or Bill Of Rights am I promised that the government will specifically take care of me. I don't have insurance, but am paying for the recently enlarged SCHIP program that provides healthcare to children. That's all nice-but where does it say the government should take care of children... isn't that a parents job?? Government is attempting to fill the positions that we the people should be responsible for.. it is my job to help feed the poor and care for the sick-but not for Pres Obama to tell me that I have to. As a Christian, the poor are to get help from family and Church.

There isn't supposed to be a free lunch in life.. we are supposed to work for what we need or want. I am seeing it more and more in people of all ages. Why work when mom and dad or grandma will buy us a house, fix our car or pay for education or rent? It makes no sense that people want something for nothing. That is the simple reason that our government is taking our lives over. How many times have you heard someone say... why doesn't the government do something-about gas prices, healthcare, jobs? That IS NOT what government was intended to be. Every time that government takes over an aspect of lives, they screw it up!

In 1935, FDR signed the Social Security Act. It was MEANT to be a "supplemental" (key word there!) retirement insurance. Period. Nothing else. Democratic Roosevelt saw a need for people to have a bit of "help" during retirement. Probably the beginning of social welfare. In 1965, Democratic President Johnson signed into law Medicare/Medicaid taking a huge hit on Security Funds. 2003, Republican President Bush added the Medicare Modernization Act adding prescription drugs to Social Security. The Social Security system is basically broke. Now do we really want the people that have taken a supplemental retirement insurance and turned it into a full retirement and medical system, to run a nation's healthcare?

Umm, where are the doctors going to come from? Who in their right mind would want to enter the medical profession and wait for the government to cut them a check? Just ask car dealers how well that worked with Clash for Clunkers. Another topic for another time but I bet junkyards that sell used parts and used car lots aren't very happy either!

Traditionally, the US Government has not been the most ethical group of people. Are there death panels? Will there be rationing? Will illegal immigrants be covered? There really are not any straight answers. My father died of cancer in 2000. His cancer was fast growing and had invaded his brain, lymph nodes, lungs, etc. He chose to discontinue treatment because he knew a cure was unavailable. It was a decision he made concerning his own life. I would like to be able to make that same decision!

I have yet to find another person that wants government run healthcare. You exist, that is obvious but I haven't met you. Town halls are filled with people that don't want it.. polls are showing more people that are against it than those in favor. Then why won't our politicians listen to us? Were they not dually elected to SERVE the people?

Sen Jay Rockefeller D-WV has made it clear to his state that he will support whatever HE feels is right. WV Democrats unanimously supported Hillary Clinton as that last Presidential candidate. Sen Rockefeller supported Barack Obama. Sen Rockefeller has co-written Bills 773 & 778 that would give the Federal Government the right to take over the Internet if they felt it was needed. He has also stated "would it be better if we had never invented the Internet?".

As stated above, I sent Sen Rockefeller an email stating my position of the Healthcare Bill. Attached below is the response that I received in an email from his office. Apparently, he does not care how my household feels. He feels that it is worth a fight to get the bill passed. All well and good Senator, but it is time to find out how your constituents feel. Serve not make our choices, Senator. I worked for you many years ago, when you ran for Governor of our fine state. Next election, I promise you, I will work long and hard for your opponent! You no longer are in touch with the people of WV.

Dear Kimberly,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts regarding comprehensive health care reform. I understand how important this issue is to you, as it is to me, and I am grateful you have been in touch about it.

When I first began my career in public service, I learned a valuable lesson: health care is a right and should not merely be a privilege. Today, it is an undeniable fact that thousands of families in our state carry the burden of failed health care policies and unmet promises. Roughly 17 percent of West Virginians have decided at one point or another not to visit a doctor because they could not afford it. More than 75 percent of people who cited medical expenses in their bankruptcy claims actually had health insurance, and most of them had jobs. How is this possible in a country as bountiful as ours? This is a question that has been left unanswered for far too long. With more than 45 million uninsured Americans, I believe more strongly than ever that we must not lose sight of the moral imperative to extend health care coverage that is affordable and meaningful to every American.

Right now, I believe that we are at a turning point - not just in Congress - but in West Virginia and across the country. We have a profound opportunity to fix a broken system and make life better for millions of Americans. As part of his Fiscal Year 2010 (FY10) budget request to Congress, President Obama proposed $950 billion in savings to pay for comprehensive health care reform. No President in history has made such a sizable funding commitment to health care in an annual budget. Now, it is up to Congress to continue its work on the details of reform, so that we can submit a comprehensive plan to the President this year. We cannot afford to wait.

There are real people in West Virginia with real lives hanging in the balance. So many individuals in our communities feel alone in their struggles within this broken system, and just one serious illness threatens to send their entire world tumbling down. These are people we know: a husband or a wife, a son or a daughter, a mom or a dad, a church member or a co-worker. The growing and deeply felt insecurity of being one step removed from disaster runs like a common thread throughout our entire health care system. It is this experience that has led me to embrace three straightforward principles which guide every decision I make in Washington on the subject of health care - availability, affordability, and accountability.

First, I believe health coverage should always be available, whether it is private coverage or public programs, so that everyone can enroll. This is the basic concept of universal coverage I have always believed in. Our current system has so many gaps that millions go without coverage - including 250,000 people who are uninsured in West Virginia. Some are chronically uninsured, some from a job loss, some are students, and some have hit the ceiling on the amount of coverage their insurance provides. Recent data shows that over one-third of Americans have either experienced gaps in their insurance or relied on public programs for part of their coverage. As many as one in five uninsured Americans have no coverage at all because they have changed or lost their job. That is simply unacceptable.

In order to finally make health care available to all, we should continue the tax-exemption for employer-provided health care, provide universal coverage to kids, and allow retirees between ages 55 and 64 to buy into Medicare. We should also expand Medicaid for those who need it, help small businesses provide health benefits to their employees, and finally create a long-term care program in this country.

Second, health coverage also must be affordable, so that individuals, families, and small businesses can handle the costs of coverage. Americans are forced to spend more and more of their income on health care each year. And, those with health insurance are often not protected from even higher costs in the face of severe illness. This has to stop and there are several serious proposals under consideration for increasing health care affordability and reducing costs - for families and for the system as a whole. The first of these is a public health insurance option. As the original author of the Consumers Health Care Act (S. 1278) in the Senate, I want to be clear that the public option is voluntary, and it is an option. It would simply guarantee that there is at least one health insurance plan out there that ordinary Americans can afford and can count on even when they get sick. It is stable and it is affordable, and it actually saves money in the federal budget by acting as a counterweight to profit-driven insurance companies.

Cost savings are also possible in Medicare. By this, I do not mean charging seniors more for less. That is not a policy I would ever support. The proposal I have been working on would prevent Medicare from going broke, as it is on track to do by 2017. It would eliminate the special interests and the politicians from the process of determining Medicare payment, and instead allow independent experts to make the best decisions about how much we should pay health care providers. Gradually, these experts will carefully discipline this essential part of our health care safety net, and do so without sacrificing access to necessary care for our seniors and individuals with disabilities.

Third, health coverage must be accountable, which means the insurance you buy today will be there when you need it tomorrow. As Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, I have been investigating the insurance industry and uncovering some incredibly disturbing facts about the deceptive practices insurance companies use. In order to maximize their profits, insurance companies are discriminating against people with pre-existing health conditions, hiding onerous caps on coverage in legalistic fine print, cutting off small businesses when someone who works there gets ill, and systematically overcharging for co-payments. As a result, many middle-class and working families, who have paid their premiums faithfully for years, abruptly find they are dumped from their insurance and have no protection against the financial ruin they worked so hard to prevent.

It is clear that the insurance industry needs to be reined in. So far, it looks like all sides agree on the importance of new insurance rules as part of health reform, which will go a long way toward treating hard-working Americans with dignity and basic fairness.

I refuse to believe that a better health care system is not possible. It is, and I am going to continue to fight for comprehensive health reform every single day. I will have your thoughts and experiences clearly in mind as Congress moves forward in enacting meaningful and comprehensive health care reform.

Thank you again for writing. It is always good to hear from my fellow West Virginians about matters of importance. Best wishes.

With Warm Regards,

Jay Rockefeller

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