Backing wrong horse
When I saw Sen. Chuck Schumer give two thumbs up on the senators' passing of the grossly mislabeled "Inflation Reduction Act," I wanted to gag. A short column in The Wall Street Journal explains my tendency to gag. Stephen Moore and Tomas Philipson sum up this debacle in a rather simplistic way: "It would transfer about a quarter of a trillion dollars from America's pharmaceutical industry, which saves and extends lives, to the climate-change industrial complex, which makes energy more expensive. The former industry has produced the majority of the world's 40 most recent wonder drugs."
These wonder drugs have saved hundreds of thousands of lives and extended the lives of millions of others. Please excuse my personal reference to these wonder drugs to my own experience. About one and a half years ago, I was diagnosed with advanced bladder cancer. At the time, the usual treatment was radiology followed by chemotherapy. In my case, my body would not tolerate chemo, so my treatment was changed to immunotherapy, which was prescribed by my cancer doctor as the latest and greatest, which has given me renewed hope.
So what will we get for decreasing funding for the pharmaceutical industry and increasing funding for green industry? Answer: Taking your and my tax dollars to an industry that has already taken billions in subsidies and creates a little over 5 percent of energy on an unreliable basis.
On student loan debt
Boy howdy, what a fool I am! Here I spent the better part of two decades scrimping and saving so my daughter could attend a university of her choice without incurring onerous student debt, only now to discover that Joe can just magically erase billions of dollars in student debt with the stroke of a pen. And he can do it without legislation from Congress to boot.
I'm sure John Brummett would just say I'm practicing the politics of race/class resentment, but I was clearly naïve to believe that debts incurred in good faith had to be repaid at some point.
Move toward the good
Scientists tell us that a collective of lowly slime-mold organisms moves toward what is good for it, and away from what is not.
About 300 years ago, utilitarian philosophers suggested that we should adopt similar conduct to form a more just society. We should move toward that which does the greatest good for the greatest number, and away from that which does not.
Thus, forming a system of conduct so obviously beneficial that, given a human brain, even Republican legislators should be able to appreciate its merits.
DAVID L. HENDERSON
Hot Springs Village
Everything must be right with the world if all the editorial page writers can find to clutch their pearls about is marijuana cocktails that don't even exist in Arkansas.
The ghosts of the past
Here's another message from the Truth and Common Sense party. You know, Americans, not Democrats, not Republicans--Americans. It almost feels good to say that.
Last month my family visited the Gettysburg Civil War battlefield. The loss of life in this one battle was staggering. Over 50,000 casualties were recorded. This was just one battle where Americans killed Americans. One theme found throughout all the many memorials was "never again." Echoing the letters of the lowest privates north and south, to possibly the greatest American president, Abraham Lincoln--never again. From Lincoln's Gettysburg address: "From these honored dead ... shall not have died in vain." Never again, the blue and the gray.
As I stood at the rock wall that ended Pickett's Charge and laid low so many, my mind wandered across the landscape of modern America. Could there be anyone today who would lead Americans to kill Americans? Could this happen again in some form?
I feel we have false prophets among us, seeking power and position based on lies and fear. Will you answer the call to take up arms against other Americans, serving a political agenda? Will you pick a political party over America? Perhaps the honored dead did die in vain.
I call on the holdout Republican leaders to do the right thing. Serve your county first. Honor your oath and speak the truth. The ghosts of the past are watching. The blue and gray.
Not working for us
I am a native Arkansan and have seen many politicians come and go in my 90 years. I have never seen such a sorry lot of Republicans who are opposed to everything the Biden administration does, even if it would benefit Arkansas.
Tom Cottonmouth finds fault with everything including veterans benefits. He thinks he is presidential material; Lord help us. John Boozman is a man of few words, and neither senator, so far as I can tell, has worked on measures to benefit their constituents.
When I see their political ads on TV, during which they proudly display pictures with Donald Trump, the wannabe tyrant and dictator for life, it makes me nauseous!
Then we have Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who helped promote Trump's litany of lies and deceptions at her news conferences. She has no background experience that would qualify her for any government office, and certainly not governor.
I fondly recall the time we had great representatives from Arkansas--Dale Bumpers, David Pryor, Bill Clinton, Wilbur Mills, and others. They worked on bipartisan measures that benefited Arkansas. Those were the days, my friends.