Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 2/1

A clear problem

The crisis in Egypt has brought home to me a very clear problem. There are many people in the world who need jobs!

The world’s economy is being severely affected by the lack of jobs and the high rate of unemployment.

The United States is no different. The question is: How do we correct the problem? The protests in Egypt, Tunisia and possibly Syria are going to make governments in power think very carefully about how they react to this universal problem.

I sincerely hope that President Barack Obama and his advisers come up with some answers soon, because we may have protests of our own if we are not careful.

Mark Sobowits

Paso Robles

Landscape blemish

Over Christmas, I went up north to visit with my cousin and her family. I take I-5 over in the Central Valley. It is about 170 miles on I-5 and it was overcast on the way up. Kind of routine.

Coming back was a different story. The sun was out. Blue skies, white clouds and green pastures. Hey, all of a sudden, I-5 was a scenic highway. Those hills out there were a bright emerald green like Ireland.

It was a beautiful drive. You don’t think of I-5 as being exactly scenic, but that day it was. It almost made me want to turn around and do it again.

But that would have meant going past Harris Ranch again. A blemish on the landscape. That was a thought too horrible to contemplate. Once is enough. If I were a cow and forced to live at Harris Ranch, I think I’d have a cow.

Henry Schaufus

San Luis Obispo

No me gusta

Yo no quiero Taco Bell. What do you expect for one dollar? Just because you see ads, please know it’s all about a huge corporation making mucho dinero and not about being held responsible. The regulations we felt safe with are gone, just like the banks. Be aware, you are what you eat!

Arnie Setran

Los Osos

Switching systems

In Tony Blair’s recent book titled, “A Journey: My Political Life,” he writes that the National Health Service, at the end of 1998, “still had 1.3 million people on waiting lists to become inpatients, most waiting over six months.”

He further states, however, that “waiting didn’t start with becoming an inpatient, it started with trying to get a doctor’s appointment ... After the doctor, the waiting began in order to get on the consultant’s outpatient list. That could take months. Only after waiting on the outpatient list could you get on the list to become an inpatient. The six months waiting ... could be 12 or 18 or even more.”

Blair proudly states that by the end of his term, they had made changes to the National Health Service and the waiting was now no more than six months.

But recently, the press announced that the current British prime minister is considering the privatization of their health care program. So, as the British are learning from their mistakes and are considering emulating our current health system, we are embarking on copying their failed system.

Now that is smart government.

Sophie Schwan

Arroyo Grande


Regarding the Viewpoint titled, “Let’s not reverse decades of progress on end-of-life care” (Jan. 13):

In an ideal world, money would flow freely to caregivers and family members so as to better prepare for end of life issues. Unfortunately, the climate today is such that all of us, citizens and caregivers alike, must do belt-tightening.

I was an oncology nurse from the 1960s to 1980s. It was a time when the dying relied on doctors, nurses and social workers to inform, comfort and support. There was a time when nurses could not discuss “dying” issues with patients. Is it better today?

Undoubtedly, most people are better informed today and have made decisions in advance of life-threatening illnesses. Discussion of treatment options and services should be introduced (without expensive Medicare reimbursement costs) early on and with reinforcement.

Patients have died with “dignity and control” without Medicare’s financial interventions in the past. We will not “reverse 30 years of progress in end-of-life care” unless we have government intervention.

I wholeheartedly support hospice teams. The existing medical team is able to discuss those issues mentioned above without government regulations that result in additional costs to us, the consumer.

Suzanne A. Rutlin

Arroyo Grande

Thanks from shelter

The North County Women’s Shelter and Resource Center would like to thank the community for its incredible generosity during the holidays.

Our agency provided meals and gifts to more than 100 women and their children during November and December.

Through the generous donations of community members, these families were able to experience a little piece of joy during their holidays.

Thank you for thinking of families whose lives have been touched by domestic violence. Your support means more than you know.

Jennifer Adams

North County Women’s Shelter and Resource Center executive director