Letters to the editor: 02-08-18

Let’s fix Medicare therapy hole

With Congress finally deeply engaged in at least part of a budget instead of just another continuing resolution, we need to mobilize to urge it to include plugging a glaring hole left in the Medicare law last December.


For the first time in two decades, Congress failed to renew the law lifting the caps of $2,010 on payments for physical therapy and other supportive therapies. It’s not hard to see where even a minor injury to a senior could send the therapy bills well beyond this limit.

We now know how vitally important maintaining mobility is to quality of life as we age. It only makes sense that a little more physical therapy can avert huge medical treatment and care expenses later. We need to urge Congress to restore full funding for essential therapies under Medicare.

Arne Werchick


Pot letter gets lit up

The rambling, nonsensical opinion piece by Lerre McClure is so logic-flawed I feel compelled to tear it to shreds. The speed limits have gone up in Colorado — were the legislators high when they passed that bill? If not, where’s the pot connection? Where are the stats on the gun deaths (only a few a year — really?) that he implies are a result of legal pot?

Homeless people are getting younger – somehow he equates that to legal pot? He predicts a rise in the homeless population here in Hawaii if we legalize. How can Mr. McClure take a complicated problem like homelessness and dismiss all the other factors? He cites a Colorado politician who applauds Jeff Sessions for “upholding the law and recognizing the serious and proven harms associated with marijuana.”

There’s one problem — there are no serious and proven harms. He states his family has suffered from drug use — my condolences — but he doesn’t say that drug was pot.

Equating all drugs is just another flaw in his argument.

Marijuana is part of our culture. Legal or not, people will continue to use it. For me, I find pot makes old age a lot more tolerable. Maybe Mr. McClure should try some.

Donald Gross


Ticketing criminal drivers could boost county coffers

On Feb. 7 in Kona, my husband and I sat in the traffic jam on the Queen Kaahumanu Highway by the high school for 20 minutes. The biggest problem was the cars coming up on the right supposedly to make that right hand turn only to put blinkers on and squeeze in.

I have watched this happen since the road opened. While visiting Las Vegas one year, my husband accidentally got in the wrong lane and then switched. We were tracked down by a cop and given a $140 ticket. If a cop was there he or she would could make at least $10,000 a day in that one spot alone.

Why is there no divider forcing them to go right, fixing the whole problem? Then some drivers were doing the loop around and coming out by Kaiser to make the whole thing worse. The police station is 200 yards away!

I am tired of waiting daily in that line of cars while locals and tourists zoom past me and cut in 50 yards ahead of me. This is just unacceptable. Put up a divider and force them to turn or when they switch lanes past solid line at the last minute, go get your county dollars and give them a ticket! No excuses.

Las Vegas sure had zero mercy on us lost tourists.


Linda Tohara