Letters to the editor

Rude awakening It is interesting that the first thing we hear when someone in Washington attempts to reduce spending is you "are against the poor." The last pending farm bill was $940 billion. Of this, 80 percent, or $732 billion, was for food stamps. The rate of participation growth of the food stamp program has been $25 million in 1996, $46.6 million in 2012 and $48 million in 2013. The major change has been in the EBT card in 2002. There is little in the way of background checks required. You can apply online. EBT cards are often used to buy items not approved by making a small purchase and taking cash to spend on items such as cigarettes and liquor. EBT cards are also sold for cash to buy anything but food. Some acquire more than one card. The food stamp program has been advertised in Mexico to alert illegals to the ease of acquiring food stamps in America when they cross the border. What may have been intended as a program for the strictly needy has turned into a out of control federal boondoggle. For those that think this can go on forever without controls on spending are in for a rude awakening.
John Larsen Sebring Health insurance As I read Joyce Minor's columns about her cancer treatment I found myself thinking I'm glad she has health insurance. She didn't need church members to step up with casseroles or friends to organize a 10K run to help with the expenses. No need to stand in line for inferior treatment from a stingy state or make some tough financial decisions and watch her assets diminish as her health improved. I was also glad that she benefited from two Obamacare provisions: no cap on treatment costs and elimination of "pre-existing condition" considerations that otherwise may have made future coverage tough if not impossible to obtain. John Dyce Lorida Train wreck? Watching Texas Senator Ted Cruz perform for some 20-plus hours in support of his opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act, I failed to hear any analysis of what about the act is so offensive, what portions of the law deserve the current slander of "a train wreck," what precisely was so dangerous to warrant 42 attempts at its repeal. Still the beat goes on. Illustration by inappropriate metaphor is not proof. Further, in 42 attempts to repeal the law, there was no attempt to offer an alternative plan. Just no health care law for America. "Train wreck" is the phrase de jour voiced by Boehner and his gang of 40 in the House. Yet for all the vituperate vindictive being hurled at the law, none of the critics have advanced a critique based upon fact. A "parade of the horrors" pitched by such intellectuals as Michele Bachmann - "dead babies" her hue and cry over the last several years, red meat for her unthinking constituency. Political circus at its worst. The American voters have a right to expect criticism based on real fact or an end to this "jihad." The conservative wing of the Republican Party is in danger of morphing into the Taliban. Really, enough. Next a new attack on the necessity of raising the debt ceiling. More reckless disregard for the good of the American people. Randy Ludacer Lake Placid