• Numbers don’t tell all
    October 05,2013

    Numbers don’t tell all

    I want to thank Keith Zandy for his letter, “No, thank you” in the Sept. 27 edition of The Times Argus. This was his responding to my letter where I answered a previous letter of his about single-payer health care.

    Mr. Zandy stated, in short, that “facts and numbers don’t lie — only politicians do.” Perhaps. And not only politicians. Facts and numbers can lie as well. They also do not tell the whole picture of what they show. Mr. Zandy suggests, for example, that the “socialist benefits” of FDR are not sustainable and that “Medicare is bankrupt.” While I dispute these claims, they were working beyond expectations until attempts to gut them to prove that they did not work. They have not been helped by the billions of dollars in potential revenue sacrificed to vast corporate tax loopholes, massive tax cuts for the wealthy, and Medicare private insurance plans which soak billions from Medicare, according to a study.

    Mr. Zandy offers an example of government interference in Sarah Murnaghan “who had to fight Kathleen Sebelius to get the adult lung that her doctor wanted to use.” According to a CNN story, this is not exactly what happened. It should be noted, however, that Sarah’s family would have had to fight much harder if their insurer were private — that is, if they could even get private insurance because of Sarah’s condition. I had to battle private insurance; I nearly died because of it. Thousands of Vermonters have similar stories, if not worse. How many seniors want to give up Medicare for private insurance?

    Facts and numbers only tell what happened, not why. With due respect to Mr. Zandy’s views, “no, thank you.”

    Walter Carpenter


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