The trouble in the mountains isn't with coal
Tom Eblen's July 18 column on the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce meeting, in a nutshell: Keynote speaker — journalist (expert on everything) says coal is going to be major part of world's energy future for foreseeable future, with modifications. Hooray! Bravo!
Next speaker: chief executive of American Electric Power (braggart and liar) says same thing. Eblen impressed Chamber members wise to CEO?
People who talk about problems of Eastern Kentucky should know we are a little slow here in the mountains, but we are wise to you. We read the MACED report on coal's impact on the state budget.
Next to the Abbott & Costello "Who's on First" piece, this was the funniest thing I have read in years. It blames the coal industry for everything from fast-food restaurants paying low wages to, gasp, miners being paid wages averaging $60,000 per year. And yet, still blames coal for poverty in Eastern Kentucky.
It says roads have to be paved four times as often because of overweight coal trucks. I lived on a coal haul road when I was in high school. It was paved in 1962. The next time it's paved will be the second time.
The two words used most often in this farce were estimate and assume. The coal industry has done a lot more for Eastern Kentucky than the state has. The poorest part of the state, unlike the rest of the state, has no state university near enough to commute to.
This is as good as it's gonna get.
In the wrong hands
Our health care administration is in the hands of the profiteers, exactly where it doesn't belong.
For-profit health insurers have reached the utopia of a profit-making enterprise. They collect premiums but their customers are too poor to pay the increased co-pays and deductibles to seek treatment when they need it. The result is record profits for the health insurers as their customers pay the premiums but don't use the product.
But on a brighter note let's say happy 46th birthday to Medicare, the wildly popular and necessary health care program for our seniors. Unfortunately, Medicare has never been allowed to grow up and take care of our entire population. Even though 95 percent of the dollars Medicare collects goes to health care, compared to up to 68 percent of the private insurers, our medical industry, lobbyists and their politicians have let our current "health scare" system become entrenched.
Obviously, Medicare is a much better system to make as many dollars as possible available for our health care.
Although I am on Medicare my wife is not, and our current health care out-of-pocket costs are 44 percent of my Social Security income. We are proof that the private insurers are socially destructive, and with over 2½ years to go before the health care reform act's insurance exchanges are available, this will happen to more and more citizens.
Back off teachers
If a child were never to miss a day of school from first grade through 12th grade, he or she would have spent only 9 percent of his or her life in the classroom.
The other 91 percent is spent in the home or out in the community.
We cannot expect our nation's educators and schools to solve all or our children's problems.
A fine GOP field
Not surprisingly, the Herald-Leader didn't get the voters' message last November. We don't want a biased media just like we don't want an overreaching, intrusive government.
But the media and Democratic Party will remain inexorably joined as complementary partners in what continues to be a shameless attempt to thwart the intent of the Constitution and basically run our lives. You see, they know better than we do.
This is another big year for elections in Kentucky. The liberals have revealed themselves for all to see, both nationally and here in our state. They left no doubt as to their view of government.
But last November, the people realized that what was promised in 2008 was nothing like what we were subjected to the following two years.
This newspaper, along with the rest of the media, reported the promises of 2008 with glee, but the buyer's remorse the following two years ... not so much.
This year the media will again perform the same old double standard, making Democrats look good while at the same time giving Republicans the opposite treatment.
I have seen the fine Republican candidates for statewide offices this year, and they are among the best ever fielded. These folks are honest, compassionate and have a genuine interest in allowing Kentucky to blossom and grow, reaching her fullest potential. The truth is Republicans are the ones who shepherd without being burdensome to family, community and small business. Don't let anybody tell you different.
No place for dogs
I have just witnessed the most disgusting behavior from what you would think are intelligent, considerate human beings.
That is the habit of bringing dogs to a crowded area such as a festival and farmers market. On June 25 in downtown Lexington I saw two dogfights, two dogs do their business where people walk, and one dog bark at everything and everybody.
It was very unpleasant to try to shop the farmers market and the festival booths while having to watch where you step and keep from tripping over a dog or dog leash.
Come on, people, walk your dog in the park or around your street. Not in these crowded areas. Act like you have some common sense.
We're paying for it
It is a shame to see our government persecuting millions of senior citizens who have paid over 50 years into the Social Security fund and paid medical benefits all these years to have them reduced or taken away from us. In the past 60 years this country has gone downhill.
It seems that our government has sold this country to the highest bidder and now our own people are paying for these bad investments.
Minimum wage is $7.50 per hour. You can't buy a gallon of gas and a gallon of milk for $7.50. A working man making $25 per hour can't support a family of four. In the past month, commodities have gone up at least $1 to $2.
One way of controlling these working class people and retirees is raising taxes and prices on everything.
When is this going to stop?
I guess in a way we are responsible for their bad decisions as we voted them in.