Letters to the Editor

September 19, 2013

Letters to the editor on fancy doctor officers, visitors guide, Arab Spring, conservatives, new telephone books

We are talking about how those who need health care are going to pay for it, and about the mandatory insurance and the fines for not buying the mandatory insurance. Instead, perhaps we should focus on the high cost of medical care.

Doctors don’t need fancy offices

We are talking about how those who need health care are going to pay for it, and about the mandatory insurance and the fines for not buying the mandatory insurance. Instead, perhaps we should focus on the high cost of medical care.

First, let me say the labor costs of doctors and staff are not in question. Health care professionals work hard and earn their wages.

I question the need for the facilities utilized by health care providers. Most hospitals and clinics look like five-star hotels. Expensive tile, marble, chrome, brass and expensive light fixtures are sure pretty, but are they necessary to our health care? All of this unnecessary architectural abundance results in higher medical bills and higher insurance premiums, making it difficult for many to obtain needed health care.

Is it necessary to go to a lavish doctor’s office for treatment? No. Look at health care providers such as Guadalupe Clinic, Hunter Health Clinic and GraceMed. These clinics offer excellent health care to the unemployed, underinsured and impoverished people in central Kansas. And they do so in simple, efficient, functional and attractive buildings.

Perhaps we could do away with the Affordable Care Act if medical care costs realistically reflected the cost of basic, thorough, comprehensive diagnosis and treatment, and no more than essential real-estate costs.



Locals unworthy?

As reported in Carrie Rengers’ Sept. 17 “Have You Heard?” column, the Kansas Official Visitors Guide and the Go Wichita visitors guide are no longer produced in our state but are being produced by an Arizona-based company. How incredibly unfortunate and contradictory that our state guide – which serves to promote our state, people, activities, opportunities and businesses – does not deem a Kansas business worthy to produce our guide. Equally unfortunate and contradictory, Go Wichita – which serves to promote Wichita – does not deem a Wichita company worthy of producing a visitors guide.

Encouraging people to visit, vacation, work, live and hold events here should be done by those who do these things here, who know our city and state personally, and who care strongly about our city and state.



Shot across bow

Our country received a shot across the bow on Sept. 11, 2001. A symbol of our large, powerful economy was destroyed, and one of our military might was damaged. We describe our attackers as "terrorists,” which is extremely nonspecific. Since then our economy has crashed, and we have done our best to downgrade our military.

This unwillingness to identify our attackers has led to widespread confusion today. The Arab Spring was welcomed because, for one, it appeared to be primarily directed to eliminating some of the client states of our old Cold War opponent and their dictators who were ruling for multiple generations. In fact, this is a Sunni effort to control all of the Arab-speaking world that, as expected, ran into resistance in Egypt and Syria. This, in part, is because both countries have significant Christian populations and both secularists and Shia faithful.

We even joyfully gave them military support in their conquest of Tripoli, even though they may well be the same people we referred to as terrorists. We have proposed firing a shot across the bow of Syria’s dictator, but for whose benefit? We need our leaders to give us a clear picture of our situation and where they feel we are going.



Not conservatives

The people calling themselves “conservatives” these days are no longer entitled to that title. The only things they want to conserve are their own power and wealth.

They couldn’t care less about the environment or our natural resources, unlike real conservatives. And the fictional “job creator” role they have claimed since the Reagan dynasty has been happening overseas for cheaper labor, less oversight and fewer taxes to support the nation they claim to love so much.



Strange word

I awoke the other morning with a word resounding in my head. It was a strange word, if a word at all. I usually do not remember dream images or words, but I spelled the word over and over on my way to the morning ablutions. I have no recall of ever having used the word. The word would not go away, so I looked it up the next day. The word is “ersatz.”

“Ersatz” describes perfectly our president and many politicians. It describes perfectly many of our movies, our TV shows, our musicians and their music. It explains why so many of us are disgruntled and dismayed at what we see, hear and read.

“Ersatz” is an adjective that means cheap imitation.



Tiny, tiny print

What is the deal with the new telephone books that I received recently? They should have come with a magnifying glass to read the tiny, tiny, tiny print.

AT&T may be saving paper, but when customers can’t read the print what good is the information?

I’m contributing the Real Yellow Pages companion book to the recycling pile.



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