May 26, 2018
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Jan. 7 Letters to the Editor

Bad bill not worth it

Among the claims in the health care bill rushed through the Senate just before Christmas, the most fanciful is that the legislation will reduce the deficit by $132 billion over 10 years. Anyone who believes this may also be interested in a bridge for sale in Brooklyn.

Start with $186 billion of savings from cuts in Medicare payments to physicians. No one in Congress expects these cuts to actually happen because if they did, the 12 percent of doctors who refuse to accept new Medicare patients would increase sharply. But in the meantime the cuts are a convenient fiction to lower the bill’s cost.

Then there is $76 billion of savings over 10 years from a new long-term care plan, but only because the program collects revenue for five years before paying any benefits. This kind of accounting gimmick is a favorite method of hiding the true cost of programs from the public.

The bill also assumes billions in savings from waste reduction, productivity gains and innovations that are more optimistic than realistic, but in any case don’t require transformational legislation.

Many people understand the Senate bill is deeply flawed, but still think it is better than nothing. It’s not. Lowering the cost of insurance and reducing the number of uninsured individuals are worthy goals, but a giant bait-and-switch exercise that will produce one of the most expensive entitlement programs in the country’s history is not the way to achieve them.

Martin Jones



Dial-up frustration

Let’s see if I can get some answers from someone. For years I have had dial-up on my PC and it is driving me nuts. I have contacted anyone that does DSL and to my surprise no one can do it here on Holts Mills Rd., Garland.

I am two miles from the phone station and I can’t get DSL, but someone living more than two miles away can get it from that station. I am really frustrated.

I understand that all they have to do is install fiber optic lines on our road, which from what I heard is no big thing. I would like some answers and no one seems to have them.

Mickey Pearsall



Farewell, sandwich king

When I heard the news that the Coffee Pot was closing I was stunned. This couldn’t be happening. It had to be a rumor. After all, I had heard that rumor many times over the last 10 years. Unfortunately this time it was true.

What made the Coffee Pot so special? Was it the smell of onions that greeted me when I opened the door and always made my mouth water? Was it the fact that it was always so neat and clean? Was it because the sandwiches were so fresh? Or was it the man in the white apron behind the counter?

Skip soon learned that I was a creature of habit and once he saw me on the other side of the counter he would reach for my sandwich.

I still chuckle when I think about the man who asked for a sub and was informed he would have to go down the street. And then there was the person who wanted a cup of coffee and was completely baffled when he was told he could not get any there … only Coffee Pot sandwiches.

One very hot day, after I had stood in line for quite some time, Skip leaned over the counter and said very quietly, “I think I should have two lines — one for my regulars and one for my tourists.”

My husband and I wish Skip the very best in his retirement. He sure deserves it after many years as the King of Sandwich in Bangor, Maine!

Shirley Turner



Why marijuana clinics?

Why are marijuana clinics necessary? A clinic would be expensive to operate and who will pay the cost of operation? Marijuana was voted by the citizens for medical purposes only. Let’s treat it like any other medicine. Get a doctor’s prescription and pick it up at a pharmacy.

Josie S. Quimby



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