Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN


February 25, 2014

We the People: Black focusing on false facts

CROSSVILLE — I would like to take exception to Rep. Diane Black's recent newsletter about President Obama and the Democrats. I have had concerns for some time that Rep. Black does not represent the majority of the constituents in her district. Like many others in her party, she continues to put forth the same stale talking points that are not borne out by the facts. Instead, she picks and chooses to support false talking points.

For instance, she took a small business owner from Cookeville as her guest to the State of the Union address. Her guest had chosen to provide his employees with health insurance, certainly an admirable act on his part. However, he believed that he was being subjected to higher taxes under the Affordable Care Act.

I did a little checking on my own. According to the IRS site on the Internet, businesses with less than 25 employees are eligible for tax credits to help defray the cost of providing health insurance to their workforce. Employers with less than 50 employees can access the SHOP marketplace on the ACA website to look for reasonably priced insurance for their employees. Employers with more than 50 employees are considered large and will have different tax and reporting mandates. Perhaps this is information that Rep. Black could have helped her guest access rather than putting forth what appears to be misinformation.

Health insurance rates have a history of annual increases prior to the ACA, which has a goal of lowering costs and which is already having an impact in that area. Why don’t we ever hear from Ms. Black about some of the individuals who have contacted her office to say that, thanks to the new ACA Marketplace, they have located insurance for the first time or at a lower rate than they previously paid? How many individuals have been assisted by her staff to access the marketplace to locate insurance, including those who got termination notices from their insurance companies because the company could no longer reap huge profits from selling junk policies?

To many of us, it appears that the Republican Party is continuing to showcase only those “local folks” they are sure will tell about their negative experiences. Yet, when followed up by journalists, most of those stories have turned out to be less than truthful or complete. Rep. Black should be assisting her constituents in navigating the system. She should be promoting Medicaid expansion with Gov. Haslam to improve the health status of Tennessee.

We need to send thoughtful people to Congress who are willing to stand up for the needs of their poorest constituents and vote for what is in the best interest of the country (as a whole).

The Affordable Care Act, while not perfect, is the beginning of a new day for decent healthcare for ALL citizens of this country. God bless the USA (not just the 1%)!

Text Only
  • LION AND THE LAMB: Four ways to demonstrate opposition

    Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan mention in their book, “The Last Week,” that Roman-occupied Palestine during the first century was under the control of Pontius Pilate who lived in the coastal city of Caesarea. Each year at the beginning of the Passover observance when Jews celebrated their liberation from Egypt, Pilate feared that they might be getting ideas about revolting from Rome, so he would come with additional soldiers on horses to beef up the Roman garrison in Jerusalem. 

    April 15, 2014

  • WE THE PEOPLE: Is it (new) party time?

    The Democratic and Republican parties are toast, according to Joe Trippi. The Republican Party is coming apart at its Tea Party seam. Democratic candidates struggle to celebrate President Obama’s health care successes, while responding to criticism of his failed promises, e.g., government transparency.

    April 15, 2014

  • TIDBITS: I found it at the library

    I have such fond memories of going to my local library as a child, searching through shelf after shelf and finding a book that would make me a Little Princess in World War II England, or bring me along as Nancy Drew solved the Secret in the Old Attic.

    April 14, 2014

  • STUMPTALK: The reason words have meaning

    If words did not have accepted meanings we would not be able to communicate effectively and civilized society would not exist.

    April 14, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Do we really believe in democracy?

    The recent Supreme Court decision, McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, is in a long line of debates about power in a democracy. Should power be in the hands of all the citizens or should it be in hands of those who have greater wealth and social position?

    April 8, 2014

  • We the People: Public education or business opportunity?

    A month ago, we followed the money trail left by a ‘think tank’ to the major sources funding an attack on our traditional, locally controlled public schools. We saw that a handful of billionaires provide major support to many organizations lobbying for change.

    April 8, 2014

  • Stumptalk: Just another government lie?

    There is a vault located in Fort Knox, Kentucky. It was built in 1936 and encased in 16 cubic feet of granite and 4200 feet of cement. The door is made of 20-inch thick material that is immune to drills, torches and explosives.

    April 7, 2014

  • GARY'S WORLD: The chance to speak your mind

    Are you tired of hearing people complain about the way things are run in Cumberland County? Or, do you like the way the county government is run and operated in our beautiful county?
    Are you happy with the way things are, or would you like some change?

    April 3, 2014

  • LION AND THE LAMB: Digging beneath the headlines

    Our media have been focusing on two important events that have taken place overseas during the last several weeks.

    April 1, 2014

  • WE THE PEOPLE: SNAP, health and work

    A recent letter from Representative Diane Black to me states that she voted for the farm bill (with $8 million in Food Stamp (SNAP) benefit cuts) because she, like me, is a supporter of food stamp benefits for Tennessee families who qualify. That’s a lot of families, as most recipients are families with children and the elderly. Now, recall that there was already a major cut to the food stamp program back in the fall. But for some Republicans, that was not enough.

    April 1, 2014

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice