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Web Letter

If the Democrats together with President Obama produce a healthcare "reform" law that includes such features as the public being legally barred from bargaining over drug prices, then the Democratic Congressional leadership should be turned out of office in the mid-term, and President Obama should not receive his party's nomination in the next presidential primary.

Words are not easily available to characterize thoroughly the level of corruption and weakness that would be required in the Democrats' leaders for the party to produce a law that serves first the profits of an industry that already has an egregious regime of patent monopolies allowing it to charge prices even one hundred times the cost of manufacture.

If the public is sold out on healthcare, then let's hope for a complete shakeup of the Democratic Party, including the loss of all its top officeholders.

Seymour Friendly

Seattle, WA

Aug 11 2009 - 8:50pm

Web Letter

As you read the Times article mentioned, note the following:

"To their credit, the pharmaceutical companies have already agreed to put up $80 billion" in pledged cost reductions, Mr. Obama reminded his listeners at a recent town-hall-style meeting in Bristol, Va. But the health insurance companies "need to be held accountable," he said.

"We have a system that works well for the insurance industry, but it doesn't always work for its customers," he added, repeating a new refrain.

A) $80 billion is not chump change
B) That the system is working well for the insurance companies but not the customers is not a new refrain.

I suspect the Times has ulterior motives. Let's keep vigilant to the need, and make certain all our representatives know what is needed, with no compromise: fair-cost insurance that can't be denied or canceled, with care fitting for a leading nation in the world. We will settle for no less.

Mara Thompson

Santa Monica, CA

Aug 11 2009 - 7:20pm

Web Letter

Making deals with private enterprise has always cost the American consumer and the American taxpayer in the end. Look at the sweetheart deals that happen every day in the military-industrial complex. Every other country in the world is defending itself on a much smaller defense budget than the United States'.

Is it any wonder that in the United States healthcare costs twice as much as in other countries, and yet so many people are not covered at all?

The enemy is the privatization of healthcare, the for-profit system; capitalism.

My friends who served in the Vietnam War tell me the medical care they receive from the VA is far superior to what they get from any HMO. When even the vets that are usually gung-ho for America can come out and criticize the American HMO system, then you know the private healthcare system is defective.

If we can offer VA/Medicare services to those that have no insurance at all, that will be of some help. There can be no premiums or co-payments, and we must all be exempt from being excluded by pre-existing conditions. There needs to be coverage that can not be taken away. And if there are deals made with Big Pharma, we will continue to have the most expensive healthcare system in the world, but at least everyone will be covered.

Gary Amstutz

Democratic Club of Kern River Valley<br />Lake Isabella, CA

Aug 10 2009 - 8:54pm

Web Letter

The article by William Greider regarding the deal President Obama made with Big Pharma is interesting. Obama made a deal with the Wall Street gamblers and gave them 24 trillion of the nation's tax dollars. Obama took the money from the working poor and handed it to wealthy thieves. He is now making a deal with corporations that will undermine any form of healthcare for Americans. It is obvious that no real health benefits will come out of Obama's presidency. Tragic.

Steven Langston

Murray, KY

Aug 6 2009 - 3:16pm