To the Editor,
My father just had an 8th grade education but through hard work and long hours on the dairy farm I was raised on and still live on with my 87 year old mother was able to give us a comfortable living and left my mother financially sound when he died in a tractor accident.
He was an honest man and especially despised a liar. My father taught me that a liar will do anything. I have learned in my 50 year that what he taught me is true. I did graduate study years ago in theology and my systematic theology teacher gave us a definition of truth. He said that “truth is that which is consistent, does not disagree with itself, and corresponds to reality”. I think that to be the best definition I have ever heard.
As a C.P.A and also during my years of corporate accounting I have had the pleasure and displeasure of having to deal with a lot of attorneys. I managed a corporate medical insurance program as well as negotiated cost and coverage. I have been a health insurance agent. I know a little about what I am talking about.
Governor Bredesen stated there was no intent to cut any children from TennCare yet the plan presented definitely contained language to that effect. Attorney Bonnyham called the governor’s hand on this. I have trouble believing this was a mistake of the governor’s administration. Mr. Bredesen is a health care professional. He had other health care professionals assisting on the formulation of the Medicaid program. He had $350.00 per hour specialized attorneys assisting on the project. It is my experience that such people do not make a mistake such as this.
What happened was Attorney Bonnyham caught what was being done and exposed it. Conveniently, all the governor can do is blame all his TennCare problems on Bonnyham. This serves divert the attention away from the program the Governor and his administration is trying to slicker on the Tennessee citizenry. It also diverts that attention away from Governor Bredesen’s apparent inability to negotiate with all parties concerned including the Federal government to work out a program not so draconian.
When confronted with the loss of life which would result from his program, Bredesen says there will be some sort of program to prevent this from happening. Where is this money going to come from? For certain it will be expensive if the state bears the total cost. It apparently is not part of the proposed Medicaid program and there is no mention of federal help. How many other patchwork programs will have to be initiated for which there will be no federal help?
The governor also does not seem to be able to understand the effect the loss of billions of dollars of matching and supplementary funds lost by the dissolution of TennCare as it is presently funded will have on the State of Tennessee nor is he able to secure these funds. TennCare goes far beyond a standard Medicaid program where very substantial federal matching and supplementary funding is provided in areas normally not covered by Medicaid. To loose this funding is nothing short of asinine.
Mr. Bredesen talks of it not being reasonable to ask for federal assistance. I did not know he worked for the federal government. I think his paycheck however much he may not need it is from the State of Tennessee. He has a responsibility to the citizens of Tennessee first and foremost. For certain we will have not if we ask not. From what I am able to gather, Bredesen did not even entertain asking. The present federal budget crisis is not Bredesen’s concern.
He talks of so many things that can’t be done. My parents taught me that “can’t never did anything”. Another term they like to use was a person having “the spirit of do nothing”. It does not take much of a man or woman to tear down.
It takes a man or woman of character and intelligence to repair, shore up, and build up. That is what TennCare needs. All Bredesen did was throw his hands up and pout he did not get his way with Attorney Bonnyham so like a unmannered child he cast accusations and tried to get his way some other manner. It’s like a kid that goes to one parent and gets a no, so he or she goes to the other parent.
With kindest regards,
Earl Barnett, CPA
Letter to the editor
To the Editor,