Looking for Mr. James

When considering what to write about I always go first to the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs website, www.ocpathink.org, and seek inspiration from their collection of limited-thinkers.  It’s amazing that we are now in the middle of a legislative session and they have a paucity of commentary about the overwhelming budget crisis facing the Oklahoma legislature and which the OCPA’s policy advocacy over the years has helped cause—“cutting taxes will increase revenue”, duh.  They tried hard to be relevant in the quest to fund teacher pay raises, but none of their “ideas” that I summarized in my post The Glib, The Bad and The Ugly have caught anyone’s serious attention.  So forget about it, or

   (Deming, New Mexico restaurant)

Instead and in honor of the temporary cessation of our national discussion about health care policy, I want to share a letter by E. Carlton James in the Tulsa World Thursday, March 30, that sums it up so nicely.  Here is the text of the letter:

Letter to the editor: U.S. needs universal healthcare By E. Carleton James, Tulsa TulsaWorld.com | 47 comments

A lesson learned early in law school: When addressing an issue, try to determine the facts before reaching conclusions.

Note the following facts:

  1. The U.S. is the only industrialized nation that does not have universal healthcare.
  2. As a percentage of Gross Domestic Product, the U.S. spends about 13 percent on healthcare; the next nine countries average less than 9 percent. Annually the U.S. spends $4,600 per person on healthcare. The next nine countries average $2,200.
  3. Life expectancy in the U.S. is the lowest of the G-7 industrialized nations.
  4. Universal healthcare is not an issue in the other industrialized countries.

If the U.S. adopted universal healthcare, its citizens would be healthier and live longer at significantly lower cost. I have been a participant in Medicare for more than 20 years and have found it to be a remarkably efficient and effective healthcare and wellness system for those over 65.

Too bad it isn’t available to all U.S. citizens.

My Geezer hat is off to Mr. James; to paraphrase our President’s recent telling comment, “Who knew fixing healthcare could be so simple.”  I rarely read comments to letters to the editor because they can be quite scary, but the discussion his letter generated is reasonable and worth reviewing as well.

The stone carving in the photo above was a nice surprise Linda and I saw with our friend Helenmarie Zachritz at the Rufino Tamayo Museum of Pre-Hispanic Art in Oaxaca, Mexico recently, pre-dating Rodin’s Thinker by several hundred years.  So no free lunch for identifying the photo location, but I am buying lunch for Sandra Taylor who has put me in touch with E. Carlton James, who may be Not An Old Geezer Yet, but is well worth Dr. Ben Carson’s, and all of our, attention.

And this:

Toeing Caucus line

Not worried ‘bout uninsured

Tulsa’s Bridenstine

3 thoughts on “Looking for Mr. James”

  1. So pleased to have Gary Watts as my guest at the Kiwanis Club of Tulsa’s weekly luncheon and meeting. Excellent presentation from Up With Trees Director of Operations Mike Perkins.

    This is my first “trip” to http://www.ocpathinker.org, but definitely not my last.

    Gary, pleasantly surprised to read you have been to Oaxaca, Mexico. My wife Frankie and I drove to it in our VW Dasher many years ago; greatly enjoyed the hospitality of the petite Oaxacans and huevos ranchera at the sidewalk cafes around the town square. A delightful city apparently too far south for most Americans. Many tourists were from Germany when we were there.

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