Letters to the editor: Aug. 2, 2018


Re: July 29 article, “Why more don’t try to shop for health care.”

Health care shopping might work, but it is in no way like shopping for socks.

Inquiring about the price — without insurance — of a possible procedure at a hospital for a relative, I was stonewalled.

One hospital will not give an estimate until you have already signed up for the procedure. You must know at which facilities your doctor has privileges, and the cost for the anesthesiologist and the facility fee is separate from the doctor’s fee, requiring coordination and separate calls.

Using insurance requires finding out what are its “special” reduced fees for each provider. All this requires time and a healthy state of mind. Online aids are gross approximations, not guaranteed — health care gambling. Medicare patients can simply go where their doctor recommends. Shouldn’t we have Medicare for all?

STEVEN DAVIDSON, GEORGETOWN

If Alex Jones was nothing more than a laughable buffoon spreading his idiotic theories to his band of mindless minions, that would be one thing. But he has gone far beyond merely exposing himself as a sham journalist.

He has inflicted real damage upon innocent people who have done nothing to bring his unwanted and unwarranted attention upon themselves. I hope he loses all the lawsuits he is facing and is forced to forfeit his ill-gotten fortune.

KEN MOORE, AUSTIN

Re: July 29 article, “‘Orphan’ oil, gas wells are problem.”

As a former independent petroleum landman, I see the abandoned well problems uniquely summed up by the honesty and foresight of Bill West, one of the landowners facing the problem.

He admits that he and his wife “were happy” to lease their land for “quite a lot of money” and would do it again “for the money.” This may be hard to understand by those not involved in the oil industry — but drilling for oil is all about Big Money.

Left over debris, unplugged wells and pipe in the ground is the residue or aftermath of a fun party that started with everybody happy and optimistic — and ended up a bust. As for public lands, our federal and state governments should have seen the beginning, and the possible bad end, of each “party.” After all, it’s been going on for over 100 years.

MERRILL WHITEHEAD, WIMBERLEY

Re: June 28 article, “City report on Confederate monuments raises idea of renaming Austin.

Let me state outright: Slavery was — and is — abhorrent. I have no issue with that thought. I am a little ambivalent about renaming everything associated with someone in the past who had any connection with slavery. As the article mentions, where is the line to be drawn?

Probably with the names of iconic neighborhoods and parks and leading up to the name Austin itself. Can we not address the monuments by amending the plaques? This might be a permanent reminder of the darker history of our country and our understanding of the issue today.

I would prefer to see the reminder of how we were and what we strive to be today, instead of sweeping away any reminder of this period in our history. It happened, and we should always remember it happened.

DENISE WOLFGANG, AUSTIN

Re: June 28 article, “City report on Confederate monuments raises idea of renaming Austin.

After reading the report from the city of Austin’s Equity Office this morning, I recommend that policy be enacted to prohibit naming roads, parks, building and other public locations after people.

What is acceptable, even laudable, behavior today may become unacceptable 100 years from now. Also, if naming for a living person, reprehensible behavior may come to light in the future, requiring another name change.

We can find enough other things to name after, like plants and animals, that won’t possibly reflect negatively upon us to the next generation.

STEPHANIE BRUNDAGE, AUSTIN

Women were not allowed to vote until 1920. Today, women are once again on the march. Ironically, because there is movement to deny, for one thing, a woman’s right to decide for herself what health care she can have.

It is strange that anyone would even think of once again denying women their constitutional rights. I can only tell my fellow men that surely by now you know — and if you don’t, you better learn — that bad things happen when these ladies do not get the things they want.

JIM DENTON, GATESVILLE

Can anyone please explain why the Texas Public Utility Commission denied permission for a very large windfarm? It would provide power to Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana, and has been approved by the other states. It would be in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

It seems that the state would want to provide power from renewable energy. Am I missing something?

ANNETTE NAISH, AUSTIN



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