The Common Sense Panel | The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
The Common Sense Panel
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THE ENTITLEMENT MENTALITY
Re: Philip Klein’s Live or Let Die:

With someone else paying and mandating where and when I need to visit these places does the same thing for me as Medicare did for my Mother. Free is free. I certainly wish someone would “insure” me a new Lexus to replace my “poor” person’s car.

The day we started to subsidize more and more aspects of life creating an entitlement mentality is the day we started to destroy the individual responsibility to be responsible for ourselves and our charges… Doesn’t matter where we draw the line for a subsidized cost structure the end result is the same. There will always be a portion of any population of people that will live off good intentions and their appetite is truly inexhaustible. No where in the current legislative thrust is the root problems addressed and is clearly designed to feed the beast more free health care money on one end while punishing those that have to deal with the system as providers, payers and consumers on the other.

A month ago I switched to a MSA (medical savings account). That saved me $90.00 a month all of which went into my 401K to keep government from getting a pay raise off my decision. I assumed the increased “risk” associated with this decision along with the expected reward. My decision and mine alone. If the current Marxists in power muck up what I have done at any level I’ll have no disincentive to not react in a way appropriate for the Tyranny this represents. Not one. The Reaper is going to be a nice guy compared to the guy many of our pampered powder puffs in government are going to meet if they screw this up. It can’t be made any plainer than that.
— Thom Bateman
Newport News, Virginia

Mr. Klein raises many interesting points regarding “Advanced Care Planning Consultation” often and rightly called the “Death Panel.” All adults are well served by having their medical intentions known, and the ACPC might well serve that purpose, but even if it served the purpose as well as the left would have us believe, the citizens of America would not be well served by it. Efficiency is a necessary cause for the panel, but it is far from sufficient cause. No matter how effectively and dispassionately the panel could process the information, it would still be interfering in intimate and private matters; it would be extending the intrusive hand of government into personal affairs.(Ironically, it is the left who magically divined a right to “privacy” in the Constitution.)  These medical/ethical decisions are to be decided between doctors, patients, their families and faith providers. Sharing this information with those intimately involved is the logical choice, but not pursuing one’s self-interests logically is not illegal. When a person does not share his medical intentions, he does so at his own peril.

Conservatives understand that all resources are limited and trust the “invisible hand” of the free market to establish the economic values of these resources. Here Mr. Klein demonstrates his conservative bona fides by bringing the question of resources and values to the forefront of the argument. He rightly points out that the neither the government nor private sector can produce “an effectively unlimited amount of resources to treat those who are terminally ill or in a comatose state….” Someone must be responsible for these valuations and decisions. Obama and others on the left clearly believe the decision is best left to some distant and dispassionate bureaucrat while conservative believe the matter is a private one.

Economic conservatives advocate for free markets in all aspects of economics. This free marketing allows people make many choices regarding what work to pursue and how to spend their income. People spend to make their lives as enjoyable as possible. They are free to buy a plasma television or invest their earnings in the stock market. The same philosophy can be applied to the dying process. People can invest for the own eldercare — or not. Since the government will continue to be a player in our lives, and they will continue to tax our wealth, asking that the government provide a minimum safety net is not inconsistent with conservative values. Fearing the charge they lack compassion has caused many so called conservatives (e.g., President Bush and Senator McCain) to advocate for The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act and other government programs.

General John Stark wrote, “Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils.” Death is inevitable but big government interference is an evil that can be avoided.  
I.M.Kessel

If the Democrats want to cut down on health care for seniors and the incurable, non-productive residents of this country, does that mean hospitals and doctors will not have to treat patients with AIDS? How about the homeless?
D. J. Sullivan

Since you lack the intergrity to take issue with reforming health care on its own merits you had to resort to scare tactics and provocative headlines of “death panels”? As one of the vanguards of the dying conservative Republican party, your methods are reprehensible and unforgivable. You tap into the worst of the American character without any sense of conscience or integrity. Well, tell me sirs, how many deaths have occurred because people didn’t have health insurance or got dropped from their insurance policies?

How many of your employees have been laid off and don’t have health insurance now? I’d like to hear from them,
Barbara Sorin

Democracy comes at a price…putting up with your “kind” of people is just part of the cost. It’s a shame that on account of your greed you would deny health care to many needy Americans. One can only hope that the God you people insist on invoking has a special place in hell for all of you.
— Gary Hankin

SEEING IS BELIEVING
Re: Robert M. Goldberg’s Facts Are Not Distortion:

I believe it was Chico Marx, not Groucho, who said “Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?”
— Robert Nowall
Cape Coral, Florida

Facts, schmacts! Whatever you call them, they are, indeed, distortion for this president, his administration, his policy wonks and his party, the Democrats.

By the way, what genuinely alarms me is how Obama and his like-mindeds respond like cornered animals.

Presently, I’m only slightly less worried that they have a plan “to pull the plug on grandma”—of course, they have, in some fashion, just as they continue to promote plug-pulling on the unborn—than I am about them harming her and her relatives or friends in a townhall meeting, or in streets nearby, to provoke a crisis situation they will exploit to the public’s detriment.
C. Kenna Amos Jr.
Princeton, West Virginia

OK, Mr. President, I give up. You’re right, 2 plus 2 DOES equal 5. Now, could you please turn off that damn bright light. It’s hurting my eyes, and my retinas are not covered under YOUR new and improved healthcare plan.
Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

SAME STATE, SAME PERSON
Re: Nicole Russell’s On the Road with Tim Pawlenty:

Tim Franken Pawlenty is not electable. Just the mention of his name brings the fat head of Al Franken to mind. If Franken Pawlenty is not even bright enough to realize he can never be presidential material he really is in a fog. He will never be able to separate himself from Al Franken
–Gran
Texas

BRINGING DOWN THE ENTIRE SHIP
Re: George Neumayr’s Sanford and Sun:

It is tragic that “talking heads” have to be disingenuous in their public discussions of heath care reform. Nobody is well served by this behavior and let’s not forget the U.S. is home to ALL of us. Without resolving the issue of “end of life” care, the current effort to make health care more efficient will make no difference. Why: because approximately 2 out of every 3 dollars spent on health care are spent in the last 90 days of a person’s life, i.e. “end of life care.” Hopefully this explanation brings the picture more into focus. Why would anyone, who lives here, intentionally want to bankrupt this great country? That is the question you must ask yourself.
— Bob Blazek

Bellaire, Ohio

SHUT THEM UP IN 2010
Re: Peter Ferrara’s Shut Up, America!:

I used to be a union member but no more will I stand with them. They went against all that America stands for. I have actually been involved in union for many years serving as a Chief steward and Vice president of a local, I have never ever called on my people to stop a meeting nor would I. I will stand up for them to say what they desire as to the constitution and the unions be damned. This president is the most dangerous one we have ever had, he needs to be impeached. Why can’t we do that in 2010 when we flood the House with Republicans? That is if Acorn doesn’t throw the election for Obama. The communists, and we need to call them what they are, have taken over and we need to fight to get our country back.
— Ken Roberts
Lebanon, Ohio

AND MORE BEN AND BEVERLY
Re: Reader letters under “Projecting” and “Fed Up and Determined” in Reader Mail’s Not Taking It Anymore:

Ben Stein is a class act. Please let him know that there are many who agree with his positions and enjoy his movies. I took my whole family to see Expelled. My 3 teenagers loved it and really like him.

I was laid off from a newspaper on election day after 10 years — I feel his pain. But everyone knows which way the Times has been going and it might be better for Mr. Stein that he got off the sinking ship. They have really lost credibility.

I know things will work out for Mr. Stein — he is so smart and funny — and he has a lot of blessings in his life, which he knows is what it’s all about. He reminded me of that one morning on CBS after I had lost my job and I thank him for putting things in perspective. I look forward to hearing what he has to say in the near future. They have not silenced him — they’ve fueled his fire.
Jennifer O’Neill
A fan

Great Day in the Morning! Not only is the “old style” Reader Mail alive and thriving, but, low and behold, the fabulous, marvelous return of Beverly Gunn. May everyday common sense again prevail.
— Dick Grogan
Yorba Linda, California

FALSE IDOLS
Re: Ralph R. Reiland’s A Reading From Ezekiel:

How sad that a person with the name of Ezekiel Emmanuel that fairly reeks with Judeo-Christian connections should depart from all tenets of the Old and New Testaments in his cold scientific evaluation of human life. No wonder these people see no value in the miracle of unborn human beings.
— Jack Wheatley
Royal Oak, Michigan

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