Letter: M.B. Cranshaw, Aldie

Editor: Mr. Ihara (Letters, May 25) admits to being surprised by the “venomous responses” to his letter on the passage of the Republican health care bill. The reason he is surprised is the reason we are in health care mess we have now—liberals’ complete detachment from reality on this particular topic.

Mr. Ihara asserts that I am arguing facts not in evidence. This is untrue. By condemning the House Republicans on their vote to begin demolishing the ACA, Mr. Ihara is heartily endorsing the ACA itself. This point is embellished by his criticism of me for not even trying, “to defend the deplorable provisions and consequences of the House bill!” There is nothing to defend, and if Mr. Ihara had any sense of true public opinion on the matter, he would agree with me that the Republicans are only doing what the voters asked of them—get rid of this abominable ACA once and for all. He references the “high level of public support for the ACA (55 percent).” Among the millions of households who are fed up with having their checking, savings and retirement accounts steadily drained by the disastrous consequences of the ACA every month, there is zero support. There is no “high level of public support,” and that figure comes from the same pollsters who insisted Clinton was leading Trump by a wide margin, right up to the night of November’s election. Liberal news, liberal polls, liberal lies. Only fools believe them.

He goes on to say that my anger over the astronomical increases in health insurance premiums and deductibles is misplaced. It is not. If there had been no Democrat meddling in the health insurance business, my $135 premiums of 2013 would not be $589 now. He is unfamiliar with the principles of cause and effect. I never suggested, nor did I ever have any expectation, that the ACA would set premium rates. He wants to blame the insurance companies, yet the insurance companies are bailing out of markets left and right because of unsustainable losses. I’d like to hear Mr. Ihara’s take on that.

In my previous letter, I cited Obama’s infamous quote from June, 2009, assuring Americans that they would be able to keep their plans, doctors, and enjoy lower health care costs. Three big fat liberal lies (treacherous and deceitful), yet Mr. Ihara glides right past those lies as he races on the biggest lie of them all. For the benefit of the readers, Mr. Ihara needs to reconcile these “misalignments.”

“As a member of the leadership staff in the U.S. Senate for a number of years…,” he surely attended many high level meetings characterized by low level thinking. It is too bad he has fallen completely out of touch with public sentiment.

M.B. Cranshaw, Aldie

One thought on “Letter: M.B. Cranshaw, Aldie

  • 2017-06-17 at 1:04 am
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    Well, what can I say. Mr. Cranshaw argues against things I didn’t say, attributes positions to me that I didn’t take. He argues by misdirection against a straw man concocted in his own fevered imagination, tilting at “liberal” windmills.

    When I noted that he doesn’t bother to defend the House bill, his ludicrous response is to assert, “There is nothing to defend, and if Mr. Ihara had any sense of true public opinion on the matter, he would agree with me that the Republicans are only doing what the voters asked of them—get rid of this abominable ACA once and for all.”
    His specious claim to know “true public opinion on the matter,” is a typical Trumpian response based on “alternative facts” of which he alone claims to know. He compounds the farce by claiming that “Republicans are only doing what the voters asked of them.” Somehow Mr. Cranshaw knows “what the voters asked of them,” though he fails to enlighten us either how he comes to “know” this, but how he knows it. I find it hard to believe that the 26 million who would lose their insurance, many of whom would be the poor, elderly, disabled, those with pre-existing conditions, were pleading to be relieved of the burden of having access to healthcare. He’s incapable of grasping that the public favorability of the Republican bill was 17%. Once again, he resorts to secret knowledge: He dismisses the polling data, without telling us what the “true” public assessment of the bill is. It’s hard to argue with someone who claims some esoteric knowledge of the “true” facts without telling us what they are or the source of this enlightenment!

    Finally, he defends his accusation that the ACA raised insurance premiums with the claim that he “never suggested, nor did [he] ever have any expectation, that the ACA would set premium rates [once again, arguing facts not in evidence]. He wants to blame the insurance companies, yet the insurance companies are bailing out of markets left and right because of unsustainable losses. I’d like to hear Mr. Ihara’s take on that.”

    Once again, Mr Cranshaw resorts to non sequiturs as a substitute for reasoned argument. He doesn’t refute my factual point that the insurance companies set premium prices. Instead, he points to the withdrawal of many companies from state markets, as if the cause is the ACA. Yet he nowhere enlightens us as to the nature of the causal relationship between the two events. It’s the old logical fallacy asserting the causal relationship between two sequential events without offering any supporting evidence. Nowhere does it dawn on him that the Republican efforts to “repeal and replace” have themselves destaibilized the insurance marketplace. The substantial proposed budget cuts and repeal of the system of taxes and subsidies proposed in the Republican bill would dismantle the system of ACA support to insurance companies to compensate them for their costs. The system of subsidies was a means of keeping premiums low. In other words, the effect of the Republican bill was to undermine the stability of the insurance marketplace by substantially raising the risks that the new bill would leave the companies exposed to higher costs, which in turn, would mean higher premiums to make up for the loss of subsidies, which would lead to denying coverage to more customers in poor health or pre-existing conditions, in effect rendering them uninsurable. The companies were facing the prospects of a downward spiral and growing exposure to uncompensated financial loses. In short, it was the Republican’s mindless pursuit of repeal that destabilized the insurance marketplace, not the ACA! Ultimately, Mr. Cranshaw’s esoteric, even mystical, knowledge of how the insurance market works allows him to make claims unattached to reality as most of us understand it.
    Lastly, he barely manages to conceal his contempt for my experience and judgment as a member of the Senate Leadership staff. So he ends with a final flourish of non sequiturs, noting that I “surely attended many high level meetings characterized by low level thinking. It is too bad he has fallen completely out of touch with public sentiment.” Not only is this a pair of completely unrelated (baseless) claims, but it reflects his own low regard for the level of “thinking” at “high level meetings” in the Senate, obviously based on his long experience and intimate knowledge of such discussions in the US Senate. Unfortunately, I don’t know what response one could possibly make to such cynicism, despising the very operation of his own government!

    We will have indeed fallen a long way marked by such unsparing–and unreasoning–contempt for our democratic institutions. It’s disturbing evidence of the corrosive loss of faith in the democractic way of life in America, a rejection of, or disillusionment with, the constitutional ideals of the Founding Fathers.

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