Work to save jobs in manufacturing
We must support good manufacturing jobs. I support hard-working middle class families in my community. And it bothers me that our politicians would rather sit on their hands than stop good manufacturing jobs from leaving.
We know China’s funny money business (currency manipulation) is a major cause of our trade deficit. Putting a stop to it would help American manufacturing — and create jobs, increase exports, lower our trade deficit and reduce the national debt.
Congress needs to get serious about currency manipulation and let American companies and workers compete on a level playing field by passing the currency reform bill (HR 1276).
I urge Rep. Bucshon to support it. We’ve lost over 5 million manufacturing jobs the last decade and it’s time to wake up and stop the madness.
— Mary Harvey, Terre Haute
Great story on visit to Debs home
Kudos to Gary Daily for his column in Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, Tribune-Star about Bill Walton, Larry Bird and the visit to the home of Eugene V. Debs.
And kudos to Larry Bird for taking the time to visit Debs’ home, just a few blocks from the awesome 15-foot statue of Bird created by Terre Haute’s awesome artist, Bill Wolfe.
What a wonderful world it might be if a giant sport’s figure (Bird), a great artist (Wolfe), a local humanitarian of world renown (Debs) and a professor (Daily) would set the stage for a universal merging of arts, sports, social awareness and the telling of these stories by gifted, community-involved writers.
Thanks to the Tribune-Star and Gary Daily for bringing our community this story.
— Ann Seltzer, Terre Haute
Health care signup positive experience
I have just finished enrolling in a new health insurance plan through Healthcare.gov.
For the past six years, I have been a self-employed tennis instructor and coach. Prior to becoming self-employed my health care coverage was provided by my employer at no cost to me.
After becoming self-employed at the age of 33, my original monthly premium from Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield was $117 per month. As of my most recent Anthem statement, I now owe $470 per month. This is an increase of 302 percent over six years, or an average increase of over 50 percent per year.
To put this in perspective in my life, the cost of taking a tennis lesson from me would go from $42 per hour to $168 per hour, if I had the pricing power Anthem has had the last six years. I am a qualified, proven tennis instructor and coach, but I would have very few students if I raised my lesson rate by 50 percent each year.
My new policy through Healthcare.gov and the Affordable Care Act will cost me $85 per month after applying the tax credit I received through the marketplace. In addition, my old policy through Anthem had a $2,500 deductible with a maximum out-of-pocket fee of $4,500. My new policy will cost me nearly $400 less per month, plus it has a deductible of only $750 and a maximum out-of-pocket cost of $3,000.
The new plan provides better coverage and is significantly less expensive. The cost savings for me are real, and I will feel the benefit of a better plan and lower cost immediately. In addition, I have an easy way to find and sign up for individual coverage. Prior to the Affordable Care Act, it was very difficult and time consuming to find new options for individual coverage. Rates were high, hassle was high, and acceptance was uncertain. These problems are gone now for me and millions like me.
A change needed to be made to swing some of the leverage back to the consumer in health care. I have watched my parents in their 60s wrestle with health care premiums over $1,400 per month on top of large deductibles. I have watched my health care premium rates go up huge amounts every year I have been self-employed. This happened because competition was dead in health care at least in the individual market.
Anthem wanted me as a customer only if I was healthy and did not cost them anything. If a problem in my health arose the truth is no insurance carrier would want to insure me in the individual market or at least they would not want to insure me for the health problems I needed insurance for in the first place.
Add one more piece to this. Insurance companies could drop you whenever they wanted to drop you and no one had to pick you up. What happened in this environment? Millions of people in the individual marketplace got caught where they could not find insurance or afford insurance.
What I love about the Affordable Care Act is it creates standards that give more rights to consumers of health care. Insurance companies cannot exclude us from coverage. They have to provide standard benefits. They have to be willing to compete on price if they want our business.
The Affordable Care Act reminds us that everyone in our nation is important and that we help each other most by sharing the risks we all face in health care. The old insurance system forgot this. Its motto would have been, “Health care for all as long as you are healthy, wealthy, and in a group plan.” The new health insurance motto is just “Health care for all.” There is no tragedy in this simple motto.
There is hope and a chance to save a broken system.
— Wesley Kirk, Terre Haute
Help America by buying America
Millions of dollars are spent each year on gifts, holiday decorations, clothes, toys, furniture, cookware and just about anything else you can think of. Why not put that money to good use buy buying products made in the USA?
Every dollar you spend on items that are made in the USA helps keep another factory open in Ohio or Illinois; helps another worker keep their job in Pennsylvania or New York; helps another family keep the lights on in Oregon or Texas or here at home. We make fabulous stuff in Indiana. From purses to candy to vehicles, there’s bound to be something in everyone’s price range.
Buying American helps keep real people in real jobs across America, and it gives you high quality products for your family and friends. Can you think of a better holiday gift than buying American? Look for the label and save a few jobs in the process.
— Robert Timmons, Universal
Have a fiscally sound Christmas
The holiday shopping season is upon us. As we rush to complete our gift-buying, it is easy to get carried away in the spirit of the season and overspend. Some simple, money-management tips can keep you in the green and out of the red, and reduce the stress that can come with the hustle and bustle of the holidays.
According to a recent survey by Ypulse of teens and Millennials ages 14-29, 87 percent said they planned to buy holiday gifts this year, yet only 51 percent of those who planned to buy holiday gifts said they had a budget. It is critical for teens and adults alike to get in the habit of creating and using a budget to avoid accumulating excessive debt or depleting savings due to impulse purchases.
How can holiday shoppers avoid the pitfalls of overspending? Creating a budget and sticking to it is an important first step. Then, during the year before the holiday frenzy starts, plan for holiday shopping by saving up so you can earn interest on your money and help ensure wise use of credit.
The Ypulse survey also found that the majority of teens and Millennials (59 percent) plan to do their holiday shopping in-store rather than online (41 percent). The convenience of online shopping is one of its greatest assets, yet it is easy to give in to the temptation of impulse purchases. This can be avoided by having a list of friends and family for whom you are buying a gift, and a selection of items for each one, to help focus your efforts.
It is also easy to give in to the temptation of “one for you, one for me,” and buy items for yourself as you complete your holiday shopping. You might be able to save money by waiting until the post-holiday sales to reward yourself for being on the “nice” list this year.
These tips can help you have a happy holiday season without the fiscal hangover of overspending. Getting good money-management habits in place when you’re young can help avoid financial pitfalls, so it is important to model responsible personal finance habits for the young people in your life.
— Peggy Murdock, Interim President Junior Achievement of the Wabash Valley
T’is the season to be thankful
I do not think it will make much difference who won the election, they all owe their souls to the company store, and the American people do not own the store.
We could if we would just wake up and quit thinking of only ourselves and what we want, not what we need.
We seem to think we need to have equal rights and be able to act as we please and if it is not one set of rights it’s another. We only have one set of rights and that is to love ourself and treat all others with love and respect. If we used the Ten Commandments and the Lord’s Prayer everywhere, we would have a greater land.
Every time the government gets to making laws that are to help us you better look out. Our laws are not there for us, they are half-truths to give government the right to do as they please. We have no control over anything, even our own bodies.
We have been told so many times that this is what we should have. We are brainwashed. Wake up and live. Only you and others can change tomorrow if you just remember that things do not make a good and free world. It’s free people.
This is the season to be thankful. It’s not Santa’s birthday, it is the birthday of Jesus our Lord and Savior. Remember that when you see all the charities and ads to buy this and that. They say if you are living, you really, really must have this or help that.
Check into the charity and see how much really goes to the things they say it does. Also see the salaries paid and how many if they really do give most of your donation to help people who really need heat, water, clothing and food to make it through the cold winter months, not just toys that are put outside or left behind or sold.
Remember, a smile is just as important in January, February and March, and so is the feeling you have as a friend.
Are you one of the many well educated or one who thinks you are just smart? Did you fall for the old Black Friday gimmick? Businesses have been using gimmicks like that since the beginning of time for the greedy, not needy, to get you in the store. Did you get what you thought you wanted or was it already gone after you waited hours to get? Did you cuss the person who elbowed you or stepped on your toes? Did you knock someone down to get past them, all for something that was not there?
Remember, Christmas is Christ’s birthday. Yes, we should remember with a large dinner and a few gifts, but most of all Christ’s gifts to us, for they are many, and share it with family and friends. Time and love are the greatest gifts of all, and they are free.
— Eloise Reed, Terre Haute
Suspend Muslim immigration now
Bruce Bawer, in his book “While Europe Slept”, describes the problems Europe is facing because of Muslim immigration.
Two of the problems caused by Muslim immigration are because of the Islamic doctrines of Jihad (holy war against Kafirs — non-Muslims) and Sharia, a system that institutionalizes male Islamic supremacism over non-Muslims and women.
In view of the problems Europe is facing, the United States ought to suspend Muslim immigration until changes in Islam such as a “Global Islamic Reformation” occur, and the political doctrines of Jihad and Sharia are no longer part of Islamic teachings.
— Hal Strahm, Terre Haute
Work to save jobs in manufacturing
Readers’ Forum: July 29, 2014
• Anything goes with the liberals
• Deserter does not deserve discharge
• Outrage lacking on IRS scandal
Ms. Takes: Next century? Hope strikes out again for ‘our’ team
It is a case of hope trumping experience that my Best Friend and I looked forward to the 2014 baseball season.
Readers’ Forum: July 28, 2014
• Tea party folks misunderstood
• We have only us to blame
MARK BENNETT: Hall of Memories: Names, images of baseball greats trigger connections to our own past
Baseball Hall of Famers are just people. Totally human. Still, for Americans who follow the national pastime, those players represent a nostalgic connection to summers gone by.
Editorial: Community support crucial for workers facing layoffs
The loss of 150 jobs impacts people — the employees themselves, their families and the community. They need the support of loved ones, friends, neighbors, churches, schools, clubs and local service groups in the search for new work and clarity amid the uncertainty.
- Readers' Forum: July 27, 2014
Flashpoint: Why incumbents keep getting re-elected
Nearly three-quarters of Americans want to throw out most members of Congress, including their own representative, yet the vast majority of incumbents will be returning to Capitol Hill in January.
Flashpoint: Spreading the good word about marriage equality
If you blinked over the past month, you probably missed some news about marriage equality in Indiana.
Ronn Mott: Gaza 2014 — hatred lives on
The rockets’ red glares have turned Gaza, part of the Palestinian authority, into a battleground with Hamas, a legislative terrorist organization that has been stockpiling armaments to use against Israel for years.
- Readers’ Forum: July 25, 2014
RONN MOTT: The Czar of Russia
If you are expecting Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Republic, to react to the crisis in the Ukraine as an ordinary elected official, think again. Even though Putin is the President of the Russian Republic, this is not the job he wants. Putin also doesn’t want to be the chairman of a newly resurrected Communist Party in Russia. No, what he wants is to be the czar of a greater Russia.
Readers’ Forum: July 24, 2014
• Clinic will expand basic health access
• Misunderstanding truth about Islam
EDITORIAL: Work program needs industry buy-in
Good help is hard to find. That’s essentially what Indiana companies have insisted for several years. The state struggles with a “skills gap,” the firms explain. They need employees, but can’t find enough — or in some cases, any — qualified Hoosiers. Businesses say too few applicants possess the “soft skills,” such as showing up for work on time or being able to effectively communicate with co-workers.
- Readers’ Forum: July 23, 2014
RONN MOTT: Dragonfly
The other morning I was moving the canister that holds our recycling material out to the curb when I saw a strange sight. What I saw was a dragonfly fighting with a bee.
FLASHPOINT: News about reality, not affirmation
The public’s trust in the news media keeps dwindling. At the same time, Americans’ political polarization keeps increasing.
LIZ CIANCONE: Chickens as pets always turned out same way
I suppose many of us who grew up on farms or in small towns adopted unusual pets. I had a fondness for chickens. My folks always kept a few chickens, not only to fry or roast, but also for the eggs.
Readers’ forum: July 22, 2014
• Supt. Ritz has right to govern
• A tribute to a teacher
• Rep. Pelosi shows ‘bungling idiocy’
Readers’ forum: July 21, 2014
• Theater brings the joy of music
• Drawing closer to the spirit
• Give some space to heterosexuals
MARK BENNETT: Former Terre Hautean Jim Lovell stood ready as Neil Armstrong’s backup on Apollo 11
The words “Apollo 11” stir optimism in me.
I was an elementary school kid growing up in Vigo County when Neil Armstrong put the first footprint on the moon on July 20, 1969. So much seemed possible
EDITORIAL: Vigo Jail study essential to determine strategy
It comes as encouraging news that the Vigo County Council might include in its 2015 budget significant funding for an expert and neutral study of what can be done to replace or enhance the existing county jail.
Readers’ forum: July 20, 2014
• ‘Hotel Indiana’ has a sour tune
• Kind words about the newspaper
• Some questions about RTL video
• No mercy for cop killers
• Crack down on gun violence
• Anti-Dem tirades mask GOP failures
• Important day for participants
• Appreciation for support
FLASHPOINT: Solve our border crisis
More than 60,000 unaccompanied alien children — mostly from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador — have been apprehended on America’s southern border during this fiscal year.
RONN MOTT: World Cup over, but it was fun
After many weeks and many games, the World Cup is over. While the world calls it “futbol,” only we in North America play another brand of football. It is very simple to understand why this is the world’s favorite game … all it takes is an empty lot, a round soccer ball, and you can get a futbol game together.
FLASHPOINT: Living in peaceful communities requires collaboration
Hoosiers have the right to live in peace. Yet, too many of our friends and neighbors are currently living in fear.
Flashpoint: Will Gov. Pence be true to his word?
This is written in response to recent remarks made by State Board of Education members.
- Readers’ Forum: July 18, 2014
RONN MOTT: Presidential Ambush
No wild-west ambush, either real or fiction, has been as successful as the ambush on President Barack Obama.
READERS’ FORUM: July 17, 2014
• Civil rights and burning cities
• Quality service from Baesler’s
FLAHSPOINT: Supt. Glenda Ritz ‘creating conflict’
It has been my pleasure for the past year to serve as the newest member of the Indiana State Board of Education. I bring a fresh perspective to the board as an attorney and business executive who served as Director of Economic Development under former Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson and President of the Indy Partnership, a regional economic development organization charged with recruiting new companies to our state.
- More Opinion Headlines
- Readers’ Forum: July 29, 2014