Viewpoints

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: It’s our privilege, right and duty to vote

To the Editor:

In many countries people fight, and even die, for the right to vote, as did our ancestors not so many years ago. Today, some politicians and others in power are trying to make it more difficult for many of us to vote. We cannot let them take away one of our most important rights as citizens in a democracy.

If we’re unhappy with the way current office-holders are running our city, county, state or nation, we need to vote! We must read newspapers, listen to public debates, attend candidate forums and decide which candidates best represent our hopes for better care of our environment, our health, our education, our jobs and our childrens’ future.

Register to vote. Go to our courthouse and vote early or ask for an absentee ballot. Or vote at your precinct polling place November 6. It’s our privilege, right and duty to do so!

Jill Stephenson
Waukon

 

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: People deserve health care

To the Editor:

When the State of Iowa administered the Medicaid program, our most vulnerable Iowans received the care they needed. Then Governor Branstad turned over the Medicaid program to for-profit insurance companies, a move which has been supported by our current governor. Since then, our seniors, people with disabilities, children, and people with mental illness have not received the health care services they need.

The State Osbudsman reports that denial of in-home care which allows seniors and people with disabilities to stay in their own homes has been denied or cut. It was recently reported that a man who is a quadriplegic has had in-home care reduced by 71% resulting in a move to a nursing home which costs far more than the in-home care he had once received.

Another man, paralyzed by a wrestling accident 29 years ago, had his in-home care drastically reduced.

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Support Iowa’s public schools November 6

To the Editor:

What is happening to Iowa’s public schools? Each year, the governor and state lawmakers cut the amount of funding to schools and now drastic changes may soon have to be made. The tax breaks given to large corporations recently mean there’s less money available to the state, but do our schoolchildren have to pay for those losses?

Schools have received funding increases of only 1.1 and 1 percent over the past two years - far below the four percent cost of living index! How will they be forced to make up the difference? Cutting staff? Consolidating even more?

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Luster Heights should be a lesson

To the Editor:

I often wonder what has become of the officers and staff who worked at Luster Heights. Have they found equal jobs elsewhere?

How is our county coping with the loss of cost-effective labor that the inmates provided? Luster Heights had work agreements with Lansing, Harpers Ferry, Eastern Allamakee schools, Allamakee County Conservation and the DNR. Inmates helped maintain Lansing’s Mt. Hosmer Park, Waukon’s City Park, and our County’s secondary roads.

They also did community service projects, building shelves for libraries and the county fair, growing plants for the Allamakee County Master Gardeners, and a nativity scene for St. Ann’s Parish in Harpers Ferry. The inmates’ contributions to our county were enormous and appreciated by many.

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Trickle down fantasies

To the Editor:

Remember when our federal government’s current majority party promised that its tax cut program would pay for itself and raise all workers’ boats? Guess what?  The Treasury Department recently announced that the federal budget deficit for the 2018 fiscal year grew to $779 billion, a 17 percent increase.

Because the tax plan cut the top corporation tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, their tax revenues are down by over 30 percent. In the fiscal year 2017, corporate tax revenues were $297 billion, but in 2018, they were down to $205 billion.

Workers were told that the tax cuts would fill their bank accounts, but most of the cuts went to the wealthiest top one percent of families who will receive an average tax cut saving of $51,140.  Families earning $25,000 or less will save $60 on their federal taxes, and families earning between $48,600 and $86,100 will save $930.

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Fiscal responsibility in local government

To the Editor:

A candidate running for supervisor in Allamakee County is campaigning on fiscal responsibility, but has demonstrated over the past two years that she doesn’t hold that quality. As a representative to the Iowa House, she voted to cut corporate taxes, no doubt thinking that having the state’s largest companies pay less would end up putting money into state coffers. When has the trickle-down theory ever worked?

Those cuts caused a huge budget imbalance, which our representative then tried to “correct” by voting to take $131 million from state savings and cutting funding to crucial services across the state, to universities, the Iowa Flood Center, health care clinics, corrections, local schools, and much more. As a result of her vote for only a 1.1 percent increase in school spending, the third lowest in Iowa history, schools in Allamakee County saw a substantial budget shortfall.

Wed
24
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Halloween

To the Editor:

In just a few days it will be Halloween, October 31 will again be celebrated starting at sundown and carrying over to and including November 1, known as All Saints Day which replaced Samhain in the year 835 by Pope Gregory the Fourth. It took a while with Christianity leaving Samhain from about the fifth to the fifteenth centuries. The Roman Catholic Church liked to incorporate versions of the older religious traditions in an effort to convert those into All Souls Day, which is today’s Halloween.

Wed
17
Oct

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, "Editor Emeritus"

... that a story in one of the Sunday papers about Iowa’s first governor, Ansel Briggs, noted that he was responsible for setting the state’s borders. The east and west limits were easy because ol the two major rivers, and he noted that Iowa’s “rivers as borders flow to an inseparable union.”

After weeks of a further separation of the nation’s two political parties, I wish I could express the same hope for the country.

But I can’t.

And the main reason I feel that way is not the differences in philosophy, but rather all the evidence of mob rule ... monocracy instead of democracy.

Wed
17
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Clarifying SF 45 for IPERS employees

To the Editor:

It is an honor and privilege to represent you in Iowa Senate District 28 and I appreciate your support. I’ve received numerous calls about a letter to the editor written by former educator Steve Paul and published in last week’s paper. In the letter he asked people to call me and warned that SF 45 was going to take away IPERS from all State employees.

According to Mr. Paul, “Breitbach’s party is pushing this change. This is being done under the table.” He failed to mention only one Senator proposed this bill, it had no co-sponsors, no subcommittee meeting and no support to move forward in the Senate. The bill would have affected Chapter 411 employees, such as peace officers and firefighters, but not IPERS employees.

Wed
17
Oct

Letter to the Editor: Healthcare providers suffer under privatized Medicaid

To the Editor:

Governor Branstad turned over $5 billion to private for-profit insurance companies in 2016 to manage the Medicaid program. Since AmeriHealth and United Healthcare took over, healthcare providers have been underpaid or not paid at all for the services they provide to Medicaid recipients. These complaints continue today.

Rural hospitals are paying the high price for the privatization of Medicaid. Adding to the reimbursement problems is that Governor Branstad and his party who controls the state house and state senate sought exemptions from the Affordable Care Act. This resulted in the removal of the requirement that Medicaid retroactively pay for care from the time of application.  Consequently, rural hospitals have had to absorb the cost of care provided prior to approval. One rural hospital in northeast Iowa reported that the managed care company refused to pay claims using the excuse that  this hospital was not credentialed.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Viewpoints