Letter: Real actions to reform health care, immigration

Aug. 31, 2013 @ 01:30 AM

To the editor:

As alternatives to my friend Mark Meadow’s positions on health care and immigration, which are not supported by any proposed acts, here are some common-sense solutions.

(1) Replace Obamacare with universal Medicare funded by withholding premiums based on age and family status from the wages of all uninsured workers. Private plans may provide coverage beyond Medicare, but no one would show up at the hospital without medical insurance.

(2) Issue work permits to all undocumented Hispanic workers and withhold income tax, Social Security and medical insurance from their pay. They will not be deported as long as they continue gainful employment without felony convictions. But in order to earn citizenship, they must learn English, swear allegiance to the USA, and complete a probationary period. Undocumented workers have come here to improve their lives, as our forefathers did, and they are performing jobs that many citizens will not do. We can be thankful that most undocumented Hispanic workers have Christian, rather than jihadist, backgrounds.

Mark’s claim that part of Social Security will go broke in two years is misleading. The Social Security Trust Fund has a $2.73 trillion surplus, which Congress has “borrowed” and now seeks to avoid repaying.

In order to have a political system that works, we must return to a viable two-party system in our state. We Democrats often disagree with each other and with our national leaders on foreign policy, social issues and gun control. I myself am at odds with several party positions, especially the Afghanistan war and the sanctity of marriage. But the party umbrella is big enough for us all.

God is not the chairman of the GOP, and we Democrats are not un-Christian. We advocate humanitarian policies for less fortunate people, as Christ taught. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid were created by Democrats, and Tea Partiers want to cut these funds. We instead advocate cutting war spending while increasing revenue by closing offshore tax loopholes for mega-rich companies that pay no tax.

Republicans in Raleigh, who are attempting to eliminate environmental regulations and destroy our state's educational system, represent the interests of a small group of wealthy people. They seek to exploit the poor and middle classes by focusing on ancillary issues. The claim that such an agenda creates jobs and wealth for common people is a lie -- plain and simple.

Thomas W. Hill

Moderate Democratic candidate for Congress - 2014