This is to support Mary Koep for Third District commissioner. She has experience, does her homework and tackles tough questions. She founded Region 5 Health Care Task Force. As a member of County and State Health Boards and now, the Minnesota Board on Aging, she is working on prescription costs.
John B. O'Leary, M.D.
The American way
Imagine that Acme Aspirin company, after toiling many years marketing aspirins, amassed a profit of three billion dollars. Due to declining aspirin sales they decided to invest one billion into discovering cures for acne and one billion into cancer research. They discovered a new acne medicine, but their cancer research failed. Soon people were angry about high prices of Acme acne medication and lobbied their politicians to force Acme into selling their medication cheaper. If the government only lets Acme earn one or two billion in profit, they'd have nothing to show for their troubles and discoveries. Could you reasonably expect more high risk research and development with profit prohibitions reminiscent of Nixon's failed price controls?
With only five percent of the world's population, America's freedom and opportunity has lead to the most astounding medical advances in the history of the world, far outpacing the rest of the world's socialized systems combined. Yet many people yearn for similar government controls. If people really desire socialized medicine, let them get medicines discovered by the socialists. Good luck.
The U.S. Constitution provides for "securing for limited times to authors and inventors exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries." Our politicians should be very wary not to promote the outright and unconstitutional theft of this "exclusive" private property. The government indeed has the power to steal this property and give it to people who vote for them, but this would inhibit all future discoveries.
I'm counting on future cures for arthritis and would gladly pay extra for cancer research. Politicians could assist low income people while lessening aid as their income increases and can address drug price inequity for other countries or even further limit the exclusive right period, but leave freedom and private property alone. That's the American way.
Recently The Dispatch has had two front page articles of great interest to us all. One on the shortage of nurses and one on the shortage of teachers and teacher substitutes.
In all probabilities, some of our potential nurses and teachers were aborted.
Abortion has been going on for 27 years.
There were 14,000 plus people aborted in Minnesota last year. That's a whole lot of workers!
This is just a reminder to be very careful who you vote for on Nov. 7.
It's a common complaint: "You can't fight city hall." One person in particular refused to believe that philosophy, and set his sights even higher: Congress.
This one person, now 66 years old, as a youngster eagerly read the Congressional Record (all of them), went on to graduate magna cum laude from Princeton University in 1955, then topped-off his formal education with a degree from Harvard Law School.
This one person testified before Congress 39 times to benefit all American citizens, between 1966 and 1971 (and countless times since). Just a few of the issues he urged legislation for follows:
-- (1966) Scientific proof to back up auto advertisements, and model changes to include safety features.
-- (1967) Criminal penalties for auto industry heads when they knowingly sell defective/unsafe autos and tires, better recall campaigns, and higher safety standards.
-- (1969) Continuous inspection of fish plants to insure fish wholesomeness.
-- (1969) Railroad safety, and possible criminal penalties.
-- (1970) Citizens to have the right to access their own credit records.
-- (1970) Bar railroads from dumping human waste onto roadbeds.
-- (1970) Reduce industrial and agricultural mercury pollution.
-- (1971) More control over deceptive television advertisements.
-- (1971) Include in a proposed product safety bill, sanctions to take against individual bureaucrats who fail to do their job (he proved Agriculture Department officials had admitted that millions of chickens had been fed contaminated fish meal, and that they had knowingly failed to issue a public warning).
More than three decades later, corporate and government corruption persists. When will "we, the people" help this one particular person, Ralph Nader, to help ourselves?
Bush vs. Gore
While many people are saying there is no clear difference in the two party system, I would like to point out some of the differences in the two presidential candidates.
George W. is a supporter of the military, as long as someone else goes. Al Gore actually went to Vietnam. While neither of the candidates is "middle class", George W. has proven that "the rich get richer" on the backs of the working class having taken advantage of "corporate welfare" (taxpayers money) to start an oil company that failed and to buy the Texas Rangers team. Health care and insurance are clearly a big issue this campaign, yet 25 percent of Texas is
uninsured. The highest rate of any state in the country. Texas is at the top of the chart in water and air pollution. Under Bush's governorship, the state virtually stopped monitoring air quality.
Best place to raise children? Texas slipped from 29th place in 1995 to 48th in 1999. Texas ranks 47th in the nation for reading skills.
George W. Bush's plans to revise social security would kill the single most important government program of this century, dividing retirees into "winners" and "losers."
I believe that a woman, her family and her doctor should make choices regarding birth control and children, not the government. Roe v Wade could be overturned under Republican rule. Texas is first in executions with an average of 1 every two weeks for Bush's five years as governor.
George W. opposes the nation's minimum wage law and brags about Texas's tough "right to work" (anti-union) law. Tax reductions would not go to the people at the bottom end of the ladder, but to those
with the highest incomes.
Compassionate tax cuts for the rich, conservative benefits for those in need.
Wait and see
The messages to the citizens of Brainerd that come from city hall make us believe that our city council is not sure what is going on. First we have a $25,000 mistake, then they want more liquor licenses and change the zoning for more liquor, then we have a possible merger with Baxter, then a bigger city hall and fire station.
It would seem to me, if there were to be a merger, the city hall and fire station would be a joint issue. The idea of more liquor licenses gives a message of "drink in Brainerd-shop in Baxter" approach. The feeble excuse of a big restaurant coming to Brainerd does not give reason enough to open more liquor licenses. Again if a merger takes place this would resolve itself.
Are we to take a city approach? Or a merger approach? Why not wait and see before we waste more money.
Nader is worthy
If you care about economic justice and ecological wisdom; seek sustainable solutions rather than empty slogans; believe this nation is not a corporation; desire a courageous champion for the underdog in higher office (unlike the corrupt lightweights shadow-boxing for the major parties); vote Ralph Nader.
He is worthy.
Vote for life
Voting is by private ballot. The only thing you can bring into the booth with you is your conscience. The voice of your conscience will tell you the most priceless of all gifts is life.
The choice to vote life is compelling. Irrespective of loyalty to political parties or personalities the issue is life. Others pale by comparison. Education, health insurance, Social Security, of what importance are any of these if a person does not have life to experience them?
The very character of this nation began not with freedom, not with the liberty to make choices, but with life. For almost 200 years the whole world was edified and looked with envy on America's priority emphasis on the "inalienable right to life." How often was it not said that in other cultures life was cheap, but in America life was to be considered inalienable?
Unfortunately a distorted appreciation of freedom creates the misleading and destructive cultural standard known as "freedom of choice."
It is a sad choice when we vote for a candidate who is not for life.
Edward M. Foster
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