July 31, 2013

Health Care Costs

Dear Editor,

Your editorial last week blasting Tim Bishop and Obamacare appears to be just another right wing salvo in an attempt to deny affordable health care to those in need. Your quote about health care costs rising to astronomical levels has been thoroughly debunked by analysts.

A very similar plan, implemented by a Republican governor, has been working quite successfully in Massachusetts since 2006. Everyone should have affordable health care even with preexisting conditions.

Your editorial completely ignores the fact that all of us are paying dearly for those without insurance coverage since they rely primarily on expensive emergency room care.

We can expect to see more of this misinformation campaign as the date for the new law approaches. The tactics used by some Republican governors and congressmen as well as the right wing media to sabotage the law and hinder implementation are despicable.

Since many right-wingers loathe Obama, I believe they would rather have innocent people suffer just to deny our president a place in history for progressive legislation that should have been law years ago.


Editor's Note: Health insurance rates in New York State have gone up every year for well over a decade. This is an indisputable fact and the figures are available from the State for your scrutiny. The only experts who say otherwise are the one's in Tim Bishop's head.

Something To Celebrate

Letter to the Editor,

East Hampton just celebrated the 117th LVIS Fair and it was a huge success. My thanks go out to all of our Lions Club members who spent their time and effort in support of the Club and the LVIS, "shucking" the delicious local clams for Fairgoers to enjoy.

Since this was my 20th year on clam duty, I know there is never a shortage of Club members who support this effort and I extend my personal gratitude to them all.

See you at the 118th next year!


Found Her Voice

To the Editor,

In 1962 I graduated from Massapequa High School with Wendy McVicker. She was very shy. In October I attended my 50th high school reunion. On the Roster, Wendy McVicker Wagner's email address was listed as, iwillnotwhisper@hotmail.com. I smiled and thought, "Wendy found her voice."

Actually, Wendy found her voice 35 years ago after she sustained serious spinal cord injuries that left her permanently totally disabled. Fighting for her own medical care in the Workers Comp System, she began fighting for others, first for medical, then promoting awareness, changing perception, facilitating barrier-free compliance and spreading accessible facilities throughout Long Island and other areas. She worked with malls, universities, libraries, municipalities, hospitals, retail and fast food chains, schools, small business, medical offices, corporate executives and legislators. She had a Variety Show for access, attended by 800 people.

In 1996 she chose to help the Village of Southampton. She wanted disabled individuals in Southampton to enjoy some of the same independence she had given others.

For the next 15 years Wendy worked side by side with Douglas Murtha. She designed and implemented the Village of Southampton Access for the Disabled Program and led the Village of Southampton Committee on Access and Disability.

She made the Village of Southampton the first accessible Village on the East End. She worked on Village Hall, the Police Department, Rogers Memorial Library, the Veterans Hall, the Cultural Center, Southampton Hospital, Agawam Park, handicapped parking, curb cuts, walkways, traffic lights, ramps, beaches, telephones and rest rooms.

During Hurricane Sandy, Wendy's house in Seaford was severely damaged by a sewage surge that destroyed her furniture, belongings and medical equipment. Her Flood coverage was only $14,000. FEMA only gave her $5,494.35 for home repairs, estimated at $100,000.

Wendy has over the years, unnoticed, made amazing changes that have impacted the lives of thousands of disabled people every year, with no thought of personal gain.

As a matter of fact, throughout her advocacy, she has paid for all office and printing supplies, postage, gas, and repairs to her car and wheelchairs, herself. Some people say she is the most selfless person they know, others say she must be crazy. But everyone agrees, she has left a wake of change and good deeds unchallenged.

Please find a way to help Wendy, who has never hesitated for a second to help another, to restore her house and go home! Please contact her at 908-456-2783 or email her at iwillnotwhisper@hotmail.com.


Fatal Flaws?

Dear Editor,

Well sooner or later the heads pop up and this time the "fatal flaw" comes out of Richard Krause, who by the way, lives on Shelter Island, and has no say in what goes on here. As usual, the cries of "Fire In A Crowded Theater," blathers from one of the pilots.

As a former member of noise abatement committee since the Lester Administration that was unceremoniously disbanded by Emperor William, because the pilots objected to the hard work and comprehensive plan submitted to the town, that was a "mutual ground" effort, they didn't like. Of course, campaign donations had nothing to do with it. We were informed by a newspaper article, so I guess that's the way they did it in the "Magic Kingdom" whence he came.

Ironically, in all the years, I never heard one member ever mention any comment about closing the airport. It is only the pilots that spew this scare tactic, that their playground could be altered.

Krause mentions long ago facilities, that were closed, well guess what - they were closed due to endangerment of residents, whose safety, far outweighed the few. Those areas became populated just like it is here. Things change and we all adapt, (except pilots) traffic lights now in place at intersections, speed limits posted.

So far, we have not had a major disaster related to the airport. Hopefully, never in our lifetime. All anyone, residents and those on committees, ever asked was that the pilots use good judgment and be good neighbors.

Of course they still adhere to dangerous practice. Low altitude flights, before dawn take offs, repetitious patterns, while practicing "touch and gos." Never once having the smarts to vary the pattern, DUH! What does that say about them? The airport is owned by the town and "we" are the town. Certainly, not those of you who do not even live here. So the headcount diminishes greatly and "we" have the little tail, try to wag the dog? The majority has the right to peace and safety.

You have the right to fly and we respect that. But not to totally disrupt the quality of life of so many residents. Of course, you could always move to Westhampton Airport?

Noise is a problem and it can be averted with just plain old common sense. Try looking up the definition. Safety is at its best with altitude.

So, before you call someone "stupid" look thru the smoke you blow! You mentioned in your letter "the old saying "blowing smoke up . . . ?" Try it on your self, not us.


I Liked Ike

Dear Rick,

What with today's political morass I thought back to my introduction to voting and political parties. Back in the early 50s there was a "Conflict" involving Korea. It was labeled such but it was no different than all the following unprecipitated "Conflicts" called wars, the last real conscionable one being WWII. 

Back then young people were not as politi-savy as they are today, at least not in my Lower East Side (since gentrified to East Village). I questioned Democratic President Truman's wisdom concerning the atom bombings in Japan and it was upsetting. Although I admired FDR, I decided that I would always be an Independent voter. But then I heard this introspective proclamation which embodied the very essence of America's greatness.

Corny no doubt, but it was as though the Statue of Liberty could talk. It stated: 

"Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man and they are stupid." 

That was Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Watta guy. I thought to myself at the time, "his party is my party." Ah, but that was then, a long, long time ago, and this is now and the party's over. It seems as though that "splinter" he mentioned has festered and has sadly infected the once Grand Old Party. As for those "Texas oil millionaires and an occasional politician or business man;" stupid as suggested or not, their greed more than compensates for any intelligence they may or may not lack. They have put our country up for sale to the highest bidder in the process of their goal: "for profit" privatization of America. Hopefully Ike was prophetic about the demise of any party who would destroy the very tenets, the foundation of what had made this country great and the envy of the world.


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