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December 2, 2012

Can Oklahoma afford Affordable Care Act?

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

I have read with interest the letters to the editor about this act.

Not one has addressed the economic impact on Oklahoma. The $54 million bandied about is bait for the larger intervention but the federal government. They make the rules, and the state foots the bill (unfunded mandates).

The various figures I am aware of indicate that the startup cost to the state for this program will be up to $2 billion a year. According to some projections, it will increase to $6 billion a year over the full implementation. That figure would consume the entire current revenue stream for the state. It reminds me of California and also mirrors the national entitlement problem that is projected to consume almost the entire federal budget in the coming years. If the entire revenue stream is devoted to entitlement, then what is left for education, roads, prisons etc.? Some will probably say raise taxes to cover the increases. I will hazard a guess that you cannot raise taxes enough to cover every entitlement that exists or everybody who wants one.

On a personal note, where is the incentive of going to work if all of a worker’s disposable income is consumed by taxes? In my opinion, this is a grand Ponzi scheme and the taxpayers (those who are left) foot the bill. Our population is aging … not getting younger. This means there will be fewer and fewer to pay the bills.

Unlike banks who are too big to fail, history of the Roman Empire and the British Empire indicate our country and state are not too big to fail. I pray that our leaders quit spending money that we do not have, before it is too late.

HAROLD HARALSON, M.D.

Norman

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