People are missing the point about health-care reform. Adam Smith argued that the pursuit of one's own interests promotes a better society. If he is correct, then your argument should simply be "I want what is best for me." Do not fall into the ideology trap. What is best for you is all that matters.

Rep. Chuck Grassly of Iowa stated, "As many as 119 million Americans would shift from private coverage to the government plan." That is because the government plan is better for them.

Step away from the chatter and consider; "If my child were to develop cancer, who do I want backing his/her life, an insurance bureaucrat or a government bureaucrat? Answer honestly; this is about your child and whom you really want their lives (and your life's savings) to depend on.

Most members of the U.S. House and Senate choose their government plans even when many decry government involvement, and have the money to buy private insurance. That is because they are choosing what is best for them. I am, and you should too, as Adam Smith recommended. — Wesley Brown, Eagle Point

In answer to F.W. Janes' query about Women in Black, I can only answer for myself.

I stood for five and a half long years on most Fridays and Saturdays, in Ashland. If you think standing for a half hour without talking is easy, try it. Doing it every week for years in all kinds of weather was difficult. I did it because I really wanted peace. I still do. I am not standing any longer because I am tired.

Yes, probably most of us did not vote for Bush; yes, we probably voted for Obama. For me the election was a turning point. No, the fighting is not over, our troops are not home yet, people still are dying. The difference is, someone is listening and trying, and I have hope again. — Maridale Moore, Ashland

Recently I sent an e-mail to Sen. Jeff Merkley expressing my strong opposition to a national health-care plan. This is his answer:

"Dear Lloyd: Thank you for contacting me to express your support for a public health insurance plan. It is an honor to serve as your senator, and I appreciate hearing from you." The last sentence included this jewel: —¦ I will keep your views in mind as the Senate begins its debate on the important issue of health-care reform."

It is clear to me that neither he or any of his staff read my note, which clearly opposed the plan being proffered by Congress. It is now clear to me that my voice does not count in Merkley's exalted world. This is the change the Democrats promised us. — Lloyd Holm, Butte Falls

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