America is Broken (2)

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As we investigate what needs mending in America – we must restrain our thoughts to the important matters in every household.  We must find out why numbers of things require fixing. 

This will not touch on all issues regarding the Healing of America, but it will touch on those that cause turbulence within our own life.  Your life and your neighbors.

congressAt this point, I cannot give testimony to achievement on either side of the aisle – a statement that opens up this article due to the account of Congress throughout the years.  I understand we began a slow fall, our recession, in 2008.  Magazines and Newspapers had called it a pre-election climate.  It began for many following the fall of the government years and years ago – only increased by the troops leaving to fight a war without end.

We the voter – or American, (less and less turn out to vote because they have lost faith in their country) have needs to be met, as Congress has work to do to help us meet them.  This is not a recession, but a political recession.  The economy has always been a product of the election.  This is all about politics, it is not about the poor, education, survival of services for the students, special needs, or those suffering from illness in need of treatment, new drugs, housing, bankruptcy, foreclosures’, price of food, gas, child care, new jobs, existing jobs, student loans, insurance costs, drug costs, food, and all the necessities we need to survive.  This is all about politics, a recession without an end.

Think about all those people who want to purchase a home and due to government rules they cannot –  rule newly in place due to the amount of foreclosures and those without a job.  Have they taken into consideration the percentage of men and women who were working before 911 – when they left jobs to fight for our country, only to return to find their life a living hell.  This political recession will do anything to stop progress – and it places the voter and non-voter on the outside looking in.  It has come down to the fact, those I have spoken with don’t care about the election, who wins, because they have not seen progress and have only seen this homemade recession.  They know of people who can’t afford to eat, find a proper job to pay the bills, take care of their family.

The Congress should take a moment and think about the country and its’ citizens;  stop sitting on the right and the left of the aisle, stop bullying and booing when something doesn’t go their way, stop playing a game with our lives.  It is time we do not have Congress sitting on opposite sides of an aisle, but to meet together and talk about how to solve the problems in every American household of the poor, to the once rich – for this is the land of the ultra-rich – who live as they have for many generations.  It is time to think about changing how we vote, elect, and direct the Congress – a congress elected to serve us, not to fight and never achieve, not to snicker and call names – harass and upset those who honestly want to improve everyday life.

To reform government and make changes through the people, by the people, is a significant part of the change.  Voices by the people, should be heard, and groups, committees – people should face those we have elected, and they should take part in correcting the system.  I no longer believe any elected official has the people first and foremost in their hands.  How important is it to those who continue to run for office to listen to the public – and I don’t want to hear about the corner talk with your representative – because they are speaking from Washington, not your hometown – they are telling, not giving you the opportunity to speak out.  We must demand people have a say in government – the election is no longer how we can achieve a voice from our community.  The election is a small percentage of people from their local area who still think their vote counts when it is all politics.

It would be a step forward to find normal people understanding the issues to challenge the Government, work out changes and be part of our elected society. I do so believe this is the way of America, and it has not been measuring up and will continue to fall without a correction in governing.

Here is a list of things people are not happy with regarding our government.
Please take a moment and post your thoughts.  Add your concerns.  Help change America!

1.  Healthcare – Healthcare means many issues lumped into one word – care.  For twenty years I have fought the system on many issues, some have found a temporary ending, while others are still floating around waiting to be addressed. Let me tell you about a recent phone call, some 15000 people concerned with the longevity of Social Security and Medicare took to the phone and discussed the reasons behind the fear of losing Social Security in the near future.  First, I must mention our Government robbed from Peter to pay Paul, meaning they took your money from SS and used it elsewhere.

The next, and most important issue when it comes to saving Medicare, and SS, is to keep your eyes glued to your charges;  during a recent conference call which I was affiliated with through AARP, it will shock you to learn the largest amount of fraud in Medicare was from Doctors.  88% of those on the call had experienced Doctor related billing for things which were never performed.  88 % stated Physician Fraud; overcharging, treatments listed which were never done, doctors who never stepped into the doorway but charged the visit as if it were an extensive exam when the doctor never touch the patient and gave opinions without exams, but off they went to write up false reports. From the information gathered, 185,000 doctors are now brought up charges of fraud.

One excellent improvement is covering those with preexisting conditions, can occur due to change or loss of a job, changes in insurance – the companies refused to cover you with preexisting conditions.  Americans covered by a previous employee should remain covered.

Some insurance companies have given breaks to their clients if they are part of a specific plan, giving the lowest prices on drugs to keep you well.  Although, the same insurance company refuses to pay for medication which is a brand name, since there are three generics, all of which have adverse effects on certain patients, and not one exactly the same and made by different drug companies.  When a doctor writes a written request stating, “patient can only tolerate the name brand due to adverse reactions,” insurance companies ignore the expert.

We must clamp down on the price of medication for those in need – including those with illnesses that require medication, approved through the FDA but not affordable.  Yes, I have noticed an improvement when it comes to your “preventive care” medications, and this is wonderful – but those suffering from long-term care needs, are being left in the dark.

As American’s we are paying through our taxes for research projects, and much more, so this should be a requirement – all patients which fall into the category who will benefit from the medication should be given affordable rates.  As we all know, those with long-term care are sometimes paying for nurses around the clock, special therapy, and more.

As indicated, another step forward allows the adult who is your child to remain under your plan while living in your home up to the age of 26.  You are paying the premiums, they are living within your home – and hopefully fulfilling their needs through better education, and working, saving up for the big wide world filled with charges.

When it comes to revising Health Care in our Country – it will take the shifting and reading of many pages, and revising and agreeing – finally reach a plan suitable for the betterment of our population.

When I was personally involved with Health Care Reform, talking to people in several states, groups, congress and more, I realized the average American knew nothing about the plan, they listened to Harry and Louise and laughed, they believed what they heard instead of investigating and reading the plan.  So here is where a personal panel made up of lay people who are dedicated to helping others regarding appropriate and affordable care is a must.  We have to deal with the ins and outs of each bill within one large bill.  Your life and living was and still is, strictly politics.  This issue must be reviewed, pulled apart, nothing is perfect the first time around. If you recall the time when HMO’s were underway, during the 90’s, and they did not want anything to do with any part of change for their practice; they were protecting a business. No one was going to take it away.

Do you believe the citizens of this country really understand, or in the past understood the health care bill?  Is it all in advertising, politics, and what channel you watch – how you believe.  It is not words written on paper.  The best thing to do to communicate is just that, communicate within like facilities in addition to the panel of lay people and their concerns which you have brought to them for discussion. Americans need to know the fine details of a plan – this means reading thousands of pages as if you worked in a lawyer’s office, or Senator’s aid.  Those members of Congress do not have time to read the entire bill – and few people in life have time either.  Special people who understand their neighbors can do right by the people people, because what the people end up with is what the congressional aids believe in, as they vote from their office on your life.  We elected these individuals and they should be up to date on the truth, the written word.

How can we make things right when too many things are misunderstood?  Your words will educate those where time is lacking for the real problems in America.

2.  Unemployment – Unemployment due to the state of our economy has taken us down under since 2008 when the numbers fell, and the last I heard, including those who outlived their benefits but still unemployed is at 15%.  Why are we fighting such drastic change in employment?  First, when those fathers, and sometimes grandfathers and single men, and women went to fight, no one believed we would be there for more than 11 years – the longest War of all time.  We have gained nothing from keeping peace in the Middle East.  We have lost peace here at home – as the money from a normal job trickled down and the payments continued to go up on the cost of living.

How do we help those who did what their country asked?  First check their previous background and if they were good subjects for a loan, paid on time, then they will be again.  The government placed their trust in this individuals to give their life, the least they can do is give them a loan. Many fighters arrived home to find a foreclosure notice on the front door, bills over due – and their spouse struggling to make home a home. Although these soldiers fought in the desert, they are standing at home in the deepest pile of mud that ever existed.  How do they clean their feet – for one thing, let them start up businesses, buy homes, receive loans.  These people are not right out of college  (who have no problems getting loans) but they are seasoned adults with grown children, some on the verge of retirement.  These soldiers established their life and we took it away. After World War II the country gave all the soldiers the right to borrow money and government housing sprang up all over the states.  We encouraged the soldiers from the war to purchase land, houses, and gave breaks for them to do so.  We have to allow growth before we can take care of our country.

3.  Education – In the field of education, programs in Art – Music – and most of all Reading are slipping through the cracks due to lack of funds, another big part of Americas’ future, the growing population.  Can you imagine if someone, who is smart enough to be the next genius, began with a reading deficit due to a variety of problems; these are the special teachers who take time with the unfortunate, or the teachers who concentrate on those with learning disabilities.  What this means in plain English, children of the future will miss out on opportunity because the government did away with the most important programs.  Each school district can improve where their money is spent, and can keep programs that are essential to many children, and taken away, they will not thrive.  We must maintain the basics for all children in every school – some will excel in the arts, others maybe considered a genius with equations.  It’s the sides of the brain, and what they desire for a future – placed together you have an individual who will work their hardest as what they love. Without the ability to read, no one succeeds.

4.  Politics vs. Politics – The People Should Come First.   I don’t care if you are Tom, Dick, Harry, Mary, or Sue, but the people of America have the right to demand they don’t lose those programs set forth years ago.  Our immigrants came to America to build our country and they are not receiving the average paycheck of today, so without increases in SS – they remain at the bottom of the pay scale, and now we hear it will remain that way if not worse. Those who worked in factories, with their hands, etc., those generations that wanted a better place to live invested in the company, primarily stocks in the firm and switching around a portfolio only caused them to lose their retirement funds in 2008.

Let us make it equal here in America by giving all workers, retired or not, what they deserve.

Following the Viet Nam War soldiers quickly left the swamps to return home.  They had to live the rest of their life knowing they killed innocent families – and the government left behind millions of dollars in aircraft – 900 aircrafts to be exact, and one thousand ships and boats, left.  Forty thousand trucks, ammunition and seven hundred thousand M-16 Rifles, left.

This time we have spent trillions of dollars; soldiers will not be put to work making six hundred dollar hammers as they did when they returned from Nam.  Soldiers will not be producing twelve hundred dollar toilet seats, as they did after Nam.  The army had a fire sale, our military hardware was purchased by those in the Middle East.  Think about it – the government had the soldiers working, charging these outrageous prices on paper, but the men and women were working.  America left in the fields military equipment, and to think we sold weapons and machinery to third world countries and then placed our vets on jobs making toilet seats and selling them for nine hundred dollars each.  Today, thousands of men and women suffer from stress, or a severe illness caused by Agent Orange.

The jungle remains inside those who fought in Nam, as the desert of the Middle East and those who remained home to see the fighting on TV still are not sure our Government did the correct thing, when war spread, more were employed, and more men and women perished. We were after one man, and the deaths were thousands of innocent people.  The intelligence we are suppose to have in this Country should have pinpointed the culprit immediately, or at least within a few weeks time.  When he is captured, because of his beliefs, regardless of the Americans who died, and suffered – we still question if he really perished and was rolled up in white sheet and tossed into the water.  Not one photo, after 11 years of fighting, and taking innocent lives, it is a hard one to swallow.

5.  Small Business Concerns – We have heard some small positive phrases when it comes to small businesses but nothing has been on the plate – and cleared yet.  These are the people keeping communities alive, from the plumber – to the mason, small store owner’s, a cable man, and the people who own your corner deli.  These members of our communities need our help, and deserve the same health care, and rates of larger businesses.  They too have families to support, and many go without preventive care.

6.  Medicare Needs Help Not Cuts – More Doctors Need to Treat Seniors – and as stated under the title of Health Care, more doctors need to be honest.  Did you know something like 485 million dollars were charged for services not received charged directly to Medicare.  No wonder we hear about less and less coverage to those covered by Medicare. Medicare robbed – by at least, 185,000 dollars by doctors who are now facing fraud. If we could trust the doctor, rules in the system could change. Maybe they would consider helping the seniors instead of ignoring many of the issues such as a limited number of days for therapy when everyone’s body is different.  Even some hope for better treatment when it comes to their eyes, and teeth, ears, and joints. SS has remained the same as the cost of living and surviving continues to grow.

7.  Medicare – Medicare should cover hearing exams etc. – seniors have the same rights as those who are below retirement age.  Why not cover certain surgeries – seniors want to feel good.  Written in the magic year of 2008, the New England Journal of Medicine said Medicare will no longer cover knee surgery.  The article mentioned that the surgery proved to be “worthless” and those who were test subjects and did not receive the surgery believed they were better.  Have you ever had pain in your joints, a slipped meniscus, or a tear in a cart ledge – as the list goes on.

8.  The Cost to Raise a Family – Sure you have children who excel in sports but can’t afford the summer camps, uniforms, shoes, or equipment so they go without.  The amount of school taxes in communities should be able to help young people who desire to excel in sports.  Once again, the cost of education in public schools reflects on what a child receives to play in sports, music, art, and special skills, where a private school gives you the outright price to attend, but many do not offer the extra activities like the public schools.

Sure we hear gas came down a wee bit, and the driver returns to the car with a slight smile, “cheaper this week,” although the evening continues to tell us where we can find the cheapest gas. Have you gone food shopping lately?   If you are one who does the food shopping you understand the rise in cost, of practically everything.  Sometimes we hear it was a hard winter, or a poor spring.  The cost of food has nothing to do with your total shopping bill, perhaps the price of corn. Imagine those who make less money due to lack of jobs, on minimum wage, feeding a family of four can expect to pay at least four hundred dollars on groceries. Take the cost of meat, a simple package of ground beef costs the same as a twenty four pound turkey, so on and so forth.  You do not have to be told, I am lecturing to the chorus.  If you cut out a well balanced diet, you suffer from “new” bad habits which eventually changes your daily work in school or the office.

9.  Empty Store fronts – Charging for Parking – Cost of Products, and Admission to Theme Parks.  Have you wondered why storefronts are empty?  I can think of a few reasons, “it’s the economy stupid,” but what about the ability to get a loan, and you have had loans all your life?  You lost everything at war…

What about those family vacations when you could fly to your destination and flights were not padded during school breaks, so the family suffers.  If they take a different mode of transportation, when they arrive at the parks, the cost to enter equals the cost of a trip to the grocery store for four, so young people are doing without.  I believe it would be more beneficial from a broader point of view if we fill the parks, charge a lower fee, add specials for school breaks, add additional airplanes, and then consumers and the owners will thrive?  Instead, everything sky rockets out of greed. Do you think Walt Disney, when he walked the orange groves in Florida back in the fifties, imagining Disney World – purchasing the land dirt cheap, and opening in 1971, wanted families to stop going to Disney because of outrageous costs?

Who is making out in America?  Change in the wrong direction, a rumor but still spoken out loud and taken by many as a possibility. As the election draws closer – we want to be what America has been in the past, a power house – but rumors are sometimes hard to even think about –  one passed me by the other day –  one day we will be joining currency, and rules will be made not only here in our country, but in others.  I am one who would fight that tooth and nail. As I mentioned throughout this article, we are all different, but need the same things.  If we shared with other countries, (not speaking of commerce) we would no longer be the land of the free.  Yet, far too many things we are told regarding our life style and what we can do and not do on American soil.

10. GOVERNMENT Health Care Plan – I wonder if both candidates read the entire bill or all the bills, I am sure that is why they have advisors, but remember, the voter has the best advise.  Besides, the government has the best health care anyone can have. I am sure government workers such as Congressional figures are not treated in hospitals with little care because of the lack of employees.

11.  The Ultra Rich – Those who worked hard for their money deserve the good things in life.  Most rich people share their money with charities, right it off on their taxes – donate clothing to the poor, and others donate time working for seniors, making sure they eat a well balanced meal, with “Meals on Wheels.”

Times change – and together the needs of those who receive help from the Ultra Rich, has changed.  There isn’t much they can do to employ, feed, and take care of families.  You won’t find them buying  those without a roof over their head, a home, or donate a skyscraper to new businesses and low rents, but by using their imagination offer small businesses a little help to get them on their feet, or insist on building a clinic for those who can’t afford health care by giving a donation.  Change is needed at every corner of life, with opened eyes you can see it everywhere.

We do need to collaborate with the Government, as lay people.  We need to be more then a voter, but be heard, and listened to – then begin to act on suggestions.

2 Comments
  1. joycewhite says

    Hi Nancy, great article but reading it made me a little sad that America is broken. Perhaps America is more than broken. We’ve resorted to greed, fraud and stealing to maintain prosperity. I know fighting the battle for survival has left me tired, angry and lacking the spirit to fight the system. I’m sure I’m not alone. You are the best candigate for getting readers to change what is broken. Thank you for your time, effort and words on all our behalf. Joyce

  2. Nancy Duci Denofio says

    Joyce – how kind you are for such wonderful thoughts – but I have been fighting for a better America regarding many issues for many years. It does bother me like you to see that nothing has been accomplished in many years. There was a time when the people had a say in government, and we vote, they would listen. Today they hold what is called a town square, or outside conference for the people, but it really is a way to bring the press to the streets. I haven’t noticed anyone being mentioned at those talks, who they may have thought had a good idea. It is too bad politicans cannot have a mind of their own, I once knew a time when few did. Thanks, Sincerely Nancy

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