Do we care?
In 2009, a Harvard study, utilizing data on 34,000 Americans in the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANEs), concluded that 45,000 deaths each year occur because of lack of health insurance. The risk of dying was 80 percent more likely in the uninsured compared to the insured (American Journal of Public Health, 2009).
Ultraconservatives in the House of Representatives have steadfastly insisted on defunding the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) with no proposed alternative. Implementation of the ACA will make it possible for a substantial portion of the uninsured to be covered.
Can it be that we in the United States have come to assume an attitude of not caring for the “least of these”?
Robert Anderson, MD
Co-chair, Visioning America
The label price
I intend to vote no on Initiative 522. The initiative is poorly written. The initiative, if enacted, solves no problem. It neither changes nor in any way improves the foods currently on the shelves in your supermarket. It will, however, force food manufacturers in the nation to make a decision: Either stop selling their foods in the stores in Washington, or pay to have new packaging written to comply with the rules on I-522. That repackaging cost, my dear voter friends, will be passed directly on to you in the form of higher prices on the very same products you’ve been buying for years.
Here’s a short list of items that bring the GMO content to the food supplies (data from U.S. Department of Agriculture):
- 94 percent of US soybeans were raised using GMO,
- 90 percent of U.S. cotton was grown using GMO. Foods fried in cottonseed oil will contain some of that grease when you consume them.
- 88 percent of the U.S. corn crop grown contains GMO. Think breakfast cereals, corn flour products (taco chips, etc) and corn oil products such as mayonnaise and shortenings. Then there are the high fructose corn syrup items, soft drinks, beverages, jams, jellies, sauces, etc.
- 90 percent of U.S. Canola oil is GM oil.
- 95 percent of U.S. sugar beets are GM beets.
- 100 percent of Aspartame/NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, and Equal-Measure, since 1965 has been GMO’d.
You have the right to know, but you already have the information. Go to your pantry and read the labels. Is there any soy, soybean, soy oil, cottonseed oil, corn flour, or corn oil, or high fructose corn syrup, or Canola oil or sugar or aspartame in it? If so, the product will, by I-522 rules, have to be newly labeled.
Then, too, there’s the cost of supporting a new Department of Health to police the food shelves and seek out the violators. Costs there are projected to exceed $3 million for the first five years of operation.
Vote no on I-522
Defaulting on our nation’s debts will put the entire global economy in a tailspin. This is not some grand game of chicken between two rival street gangs. Members of Congress as well as Mr. Obama are holding us up to ridicule in front of the world community and casting serious doubts on our ability to have any kind of responsible conversation with anyone about anything. Our politicians are engaging in a highly visible temper tantrum founded upon arrogance and pride. They should all be impeached and a new amendment be written into the Constitution that says if Congress does not provide a balanced budget it will be done by default. And I mean a budget in which it is no longer possible to borrow ourselves into a deeper and deeper hole. If we can’t live on the taxes we generate then we certainly can’t live any easier paying monumental amounts of interest.
Back in the ’60s many of us came to view the government as something that tended to feed upon itself like a snake eating it’s own tale. And then most of us became involved in the nine-to-five thing of putting bread on the table and putting one foot in front of the other. I remembered recently I used to think that the Latin root for politician should have been “scum sucking bottom feeder.” It looks like some things never change since they appear unable to learn from past mistakes.
Learn about the candidates
I would like to thank all those who have helped with the Jennifer Talbot for Wenatchee School Board campaign. I have really enjoyed getting to know more people in the Wenatchee community and listening to their thoughts and ideas for education. I encourage everyone to learn more about all the candidates for the School Board and to vote in the upcoming election. The Chelan County Auditor Online Voter’s Guide is a great place to start.
All letters must include the author’s signature, address and telephone number. There is a 300-word limit, and all letters are subject to editing.
Only one letter per author will be published each 30 days.
Send letters to The Safety Valve, Box 1511, Wenatchee, WA 98807.
Fax letters to 665-1183, e-mail to Newsroom@wenatcheeworld.com.