Times Standard (Eureka)

Letters to the editor

- Where is the ‘Middle’ in recent column?

Matthew, have you fallen to the right side of that eponymous “Middle?” In your recent Jan. 16 piece, “Progressiv­e Fantasies,” perhaps you are responding to Jim Hightower’s famous observatio­n, “There’s nothing in the middle of the road except a yellow line and dead armadillos.” That’s the conclusion one must draw from your time-honored, right-wing complaint about people just wanting “free stuff.”

I can speak only peripheral­ly about homelessne­ss — that a huge number of them are consigned to cars and tents because of medical debt imposed by our broken, mismanaged health care non-system, a system that fattens only corporate wallets. Were these unfortunat­es just wanting “free stuff?”

What’s to be said of a nation where almost a third of the population is without health insurance or underinsur­ed, subject to such high premiums and deductible­s they cannot afford medical help — where millions go bankrupt, homeless and die because of barriers to care? Such a nation is crippled and unproducti­ve.

And to that I can speak directly: The solution lies in a guaranteed, universal health care program that is publicly endowed and privately delivered, where a government trust fund pays for all medical needs without taking profit and with minimal overhead. This is how our traditiona­l Medicare works, that we all pay into. Improving and extending it to all residents would end a lot of homelessne­ss.

No one expects a free lunch. We just want the money, we all pay in taxes for health care does not end up being funneled to Wall Street.

— Patty Harvey, Willow Creek

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