From: James Midkiff [e-mail him]
I read Bryanna Bevens' piece about health care for illegals and have something of interest to add.
Briefly, my father in law passed away in January 2006 after a stay of a few hours at St. Joseph's Hospital.
The charges amounted to $3,270.90. However, we subsequently discovered that Medicare had reimbursed the hospital $6,109.76.
After much hell raising and reports to the Medicare Fraud Division, we finally got a letter from J.D. Smith, Manager, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in Philadelphia stating in part that: "Since 1983, Medicare hospital inpatient services have been paid on a prospective payment basis without a direct correlation to the actual cost incurred".
The letter went on to say: "In addition to the Inpatient Prospective Payment System, if the hospital treats a high percentage of low income patients, which St. Joseph's does, it [the hospital] also receives a percentage add-on payment applied to the Diagnosis Related Group-adjusted base payment rate".
Both the hospital and Medicare were extremely reluctant to offer a further explanation for the bill.
To me, this translates to taxpayers subsidizing illegal aliens and welfare recipients.
If Medicare is paying double what the actual hospitals charges, this is a huge and hidden rip off of the American taxpayer.
I have all the documentation and will be happy to share it with VDARE.COM.
Midkiff is a Marine Corps veteran and former law enforcement officer.
From: James Crowley [e-mail him]
Sunday's Houston Chronicle devoted two pages of the City Section to the rise of "curanderas", santeria priestesses and various herb shops in the "thriving and vibrant immigrant enclaves" of Houston, once middle class neighborhoods that now resemble Tijuana slums.
Not a critical word for such practices as rubbing an egg on one's tummy to cure the evil eye. No calling all of this nonsense what it is: primitive superstition and ignorance.
The chairman of the University of Houston's Sociology Department, Nestor Rodriguez, the story's professional Hispanic, stated that the immigrants were reproducing their culture here. [E-mail Rodriguez here]
Exactly. Welcome to the Third World, America.
Crowley, a native Texan, is an attorney. Read his previous letter about thin-skinned Hispanics here.
From: Gail Stebbins
Re: Joe Guzzardi's Column: Mayor Michael Bloomberg: Rude, Crude and Dangerous To The Country
I worked for Mike at Bloomberg Financial Markets from May 1991 - March 1993. I was around him about one hour every day and never heard any of those crude jokes Guzzardi referred to.
I was glad that Bloomberg was so involved in the company. He knew everyone's name and rarely got angry. He is a genius, easily the smartest person I've ever met.
Also, Bloomberg is an extremely generous person and gave gladly to charity. Mike also established his own charities as well. Although he could be gruff, Bloomberg hired many women and put them in powerful positions. He empowered employees to make their own decisions, trusted them and paid them handsomely.
And if Bloomberg did make those jokes circa 1990, it's 16 years later now.
Calling Mike vulgar may make a sensational article. But it doesn't ring true for me.
Stebbins, who currently lives in Pennsylvania, is a website designer pursuing a graduate degree in Library and Information Science.
From: [Name Withheld]
Latest telephone poll on whether or not people in the U.S. think illegal immigration is a serious problem:
41%: "Yes, it is a serious problem."
59%: "No hablo ingles."
"Name Withheld" received this post from his father in California who, in turn, got it via his friend in Florida. What two more appropriate states for a joke like that to originate?