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Hospice Talk

Nurse Biffy replies. Freedom vs. Kiwicare. Robert Novak. Imaginary Republicans. Plus more.

8.20.09

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BE NOT AFRAID
Re: Betsy McCaughey's Recent Media Coverage of the End of Life Counseling Provisions:

Why are you so afraid of end of life plans and adherence to that plan? As a nurse I feel this topic should be open for discussion between a doctor and patient. This kind of dialogue is crucial for when "the time comes" and it's easier for all involved (families, patient, and caregivers) if the patient's wishes be known and adhered to. Everyone has a choice to live (and die) how they choose. I feel it is an injustice to leave these kinds of decisions to an emotional family member at a critical moment when they should be free of the guilt that comes with making an emotional decision. I've personally seen much heartbreak and sibling tension during these kinds of moments, all because nobody wants to talk about death -- it's a part of life. I feel so bad for a family that has to deal with this when nobody is thinking clearly, and many choose any form to save a relative that is truly dying, and leave our facility feeling as though they have failed their loved one. I feel that hospice is truly a beautiful organization that provides caring, counseling and a way to accept the reality of death and comforts not only the family but the person who is terminal -- that is the most important thing. Many are scared of the word hospice, I feel that information is the key, and all should be educated of their choices and everybody's wishes should be honored. Thank you for taking the time to read my point of view.
-- Biffy

BEARING HIS FALSE WITNESS
Re: Peter Ferrara's Catch Me If You Can:

Commuting home last night (Wednesday, Aug. 19), I heard an ABC News radio spot that reported that Obama had spoken, by telephone conference, with certain "religious" leaders today and asked them to help him get Obamacare -- whatever that is -- passed.

He'd asked they speak with their neighbors, anyone.

He'd said, according to ABC, that he was asking them to do so because there were people -- read: those who disagree with him and have the audacity to say so, including at townhall meetings and through other means -- who were spreading false information.

Obama's hubris truly startles and alarms me. The prevaricator- and abortionist-in-chief, who apparently pathologically does believe that he alone speaks truth and owns nothing he's said, asked religious leaders to spread his lies and misinformation. From churches and synagogues, too.

As many people have said or written, Obamamath does mean 2 + 2 = 5, or anything else you want it to mean, but never 4.
-- C. Kenna Amos Jr.
Princeton , West Virginia

I hear the Obama Administration talk of getting a health bill passed by compromise. Maybe the so-called public option can be used as a bargaining chip to bring The Republicans to the table. So what do the Republicans say? That Obama is not a U.S. citizen, and has no right to be President, that his plans are socialist and contain death panels, and that they hope the Obama Presidency fails. I cannot think of a single nice thing that a Republican congressmember has ever said about Obama or his plans. Not a one. Can you? Where does Obama get the idea that Republicans want to work with him? They clearly don't want to.
-- Jen Park

WE'RE ABOUT FREEDOM AND LIBERTY
Re: Warning: Low Battery, "Can't Figure Us Out":

Loretta, you ask why Americans are so violently and maliciously against providing care for those who can't afford insurance. Alas, you have swallowed the spin of the left hook, line and sinker.

This has nothing to do with opposition to providing people health insurance or health care. Nothing. It is about power, pure and simple.

Let's take the (purposely inflated) 47 million who supposedly don't have health insurance. By the time you eliminate the illegal aliens, who shouldn't be entitled to anything by taxpayers, those who are temporarily between jobs and those under 30 who would rather spend their money on things other than health insurance premiums, you are down to less than 15 million uninsured. These numbers have been public for some time and I am frankly surprised you haven't seen them before. They are not in dispute.

So, for the sake of 5% of the population we are going to have a government takeover of all health care costs in America? Really? Does that make sense to you?

While you may have a private insurance/government partnership in New Zealand, a public option here will over time eliminate all private insurance in America. THAT'S what people are objecting to.

You see, we already have an example of what government controlled healthcare looks like. It's called Medicare. The government controls costs by cutting reimbursements to doctors and hospitals. More and more doctors are refusing to take on new Medicare recipients because they can't afford them. The result? Some senior citizens are now finding it increasingly difficult to even find a doctor that will treat them.

Once the government has control of all healthcare costs, it can control all aspects of our lives. You smoke? Sorry, but your healthcare costs too much. We won't pay. A bit overweight? Well, when you drop those 25 pounds THEN come back and see us. Maybe we will then reconsider paying for that knee replacement you need. Heart disease? Well, it's your fault because you ate the wrong things. Sorry, but we're going to limit what we can do for you. After all, we only have so much money to spend.

The left in this country has been salivating for 5 decades to get government-run healthcare. They are very, very close to getting it. THAT's what has got everyone up in arms.

I don't know whether what you say about your medical care in New Zealand is true or not. Too be honest, I am highly skeptical. No doubt, the Canadians and the Brits would be too. After all, they already are under socialized medicine. As someone once asked, if America gets socialized medicine, where with the Canadians go for medical care then?

So, Loretta, this is not about people wanting to deny other people medical insurance. It never was. It is about the extreme left in this country wanting control over every aspect of our lives. America was never founded on those principles and did not prosper under those principles. Those of us opposed to Obamacare want to keep our freedom and liberty.

Freedom and liberty. THAT's what this is all about. It's not about denying other people health insurance or health care. And it never was, either.
-- Carol Hellman

THE 'CUSE CONVERSION
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr.'s, Robert Novak, RIP:

Thank you, Mr. Tyrrell, for your succinct yet potent rendering of Bob Novak, one of my all-time favorite commentators.

The telling of the Jewish Mr. Novak's conversion story never ceases to grip me. How interesting it would be to hear the story as told by the Syracuse coed herself who had the exchange with Bob, but, then again, maybe it's all lost on her; it would seem that the Holy Spirit's emphasis would be results, rather than methods.

Oh, and, much as I greatly admired him, Mr. Novak was hardly unusual in the higher esteem in which he held athletes and coaches over politicians!
-- Francis M. Hannon, Jr.
Melrose, Massachusetts

Kudos and affectionate remembrances are pouring forth from many sources upon the occasion of Mr. Novak's passing. And I suppose those who knew the man personally and are familiar with his body of work have much to wistfully recall. However, his handling of the last nationally significant story of his career leaves me with a very bitter taste. He knew from the beginning of the Plamegate nonsense and the appointment of Patrick Fitzgerald that the White House was not the source for his story. He could have early on set the story straight without revealing his source. He didn't. The question is, why?

Whether he was told by Fitzgerald to keep his mouth shut, or felt the Bush Administration should do some squirming for policies Novak did not agree with, or for some other personal or professional reason, I've no idea. But when the Senate Intelligence Committee report came out just about a year after the article that sparked the fire that the Valerie Plame issue became, Novak should have pulled the plug on the whole affair. That report, signed by all committee members including all the Democrats, totally debunks Joseph C. Wilson IV's assertions regarding the results of his trip, the reason for his selection, and his knowledge of the "forged" document that was part of the controversy. But Novak was silent; Fitzgerald's performance would continue for another two+ years, and the intense -- though manufactured -- controversy surrounding the issue Novak had inadvertently created, would sap support for the Iraq War and the President who had launched that effort. Bush II is a big boy and should have been able to defend himself. But he didn't. Perhaps Novak should have spent more time on that "story."

Whatever else of importance or worth that he may have done during his long career, Mr. Novak took the answers to some significant questions with him to the grave.
-- Dennis Sevakis
Bloomfield, Michigan

"On the one matter that temporarily ended our friendship he was proved wrong or at least sort of wrong. When that became apparent to him he suggested we dine and smoke the peace pipe. He admitted he had been wrong. I insisted that he had only been a bit wrong. Our friendship was renewed. In all my years as an editor I have only known one other acquaintance to come forward and admit to being wrong."

RET, please write further on these events.

Eternal rest grant unto Robert Novak, oh Lord, and let your perpetual light shine upon him.
-- Dan Martin
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

"[Novak] had a higher regard for athletes and coaches than for politicians." Plato, in the Republic, argued the way a man sees the world reflects his interior life. Of course, Robert appreciated athletes and coaches more than politicians: athletes and coaches, generally, put in an honest days work for their pay.

May God rest Mr. Novak. The conversations in heaven just got a bit more interesting.
-- I.M. Kessel

DON'T BE FOOLED
Re: Jeff Emanuel's Wicked, Lazy Servants:

Well said. The Democratic Senators have told us that they will not pass the bill at hand, but they are still working on a plan. A plan that would make it mandatory for everyone to have healthcare. A govt. run program paid for by taxpayers will just squeeze out the insurance companies. Look how Workman's Comp. runs. A heavy burden on business owners.

How are we to know that they aren't just saying "no" so people will vote for them when elections are here, and then go ahead with another stupid bill once they've been secured? If they truly listen to the voice of the people, they would do away with it completely. But they're still going to put something through that us taxpayers will have to pay for because they think we can be fooled. And so far we have been. They're just waiting until after elections. Don't you agree?
-- Naomi Turner

WITHHELD RECOGNITION
Re: Doug Bandow's Brezhnev in Dublin:

I read the article Brezhnev in Dublin with great interest. I think the key to success for the EU in its attempt to freeze out democracy while building a new Soviet style dictatorship, is whether other nations outside the EU grant it official recognition.

Will The President of The United States recognize Europe's newly created 'High Representative'? Or perhaps more importantly the new European President? Posts that will be created with the final ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, and neither of which will carry any democratic mandate whatever.

The administration in the U.S. is well aware of the democratic deficit in the EU. All it would take is a well directed frown of disapproval, and all the nations of Europe would be granted a referendum on their future. Though whether that would suit the purposes of the U.S. is another question.

As for the danger to democracy in the U.S.; get to recognize the thin end of the wedge when you see it.
-- John Armstrong
Guildford, UK

SAVING THE GREATEST GENERATION
Re: Jeffrey Lord's The Ultimate Cost Saver:

"Unplugging grandma" is not very funny to me or my elderly mom, who helped build Liberty ships during World War II.

She mentioned today that, within the past couple of days, she heard a man on some talking-heads-panel TV show make a leaden stab at humor by suggesting that "we'll just euthanize all the old people."

Besides voicing disgust at anyone even making such a statement in attempted jest and describing the man as having a "one of those silly grins, you know," she declared, "The smart-a** lives long enough, he'll be there [old age]."

An aside: Upon learning on Nov. 5, 2008, that Obama had been elected, with a look of real concern and disbelief, she said softly, "Oh, no!"

No, she's not a racist. Like many of her age and experience, though, including a friend of mine who was wounded during the Battle of the Bulge, she saw through Obama's hype. She still does.
-- C. Kenna Amos Jr.

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