October 18, 2003

Employee union strikes against major California supermarket chains and the Los Angeles MTA bus system are primarily the result of health care costs soaring out of control and the inability of workers and employers to pay for adequate health insurance. This is nothing new. It's been going on for years, unabated.

Why? Simply because government and the courts have been unable or unwilling to stem the rising tide of fraud, waste and abuse in the health care and medical malpractice industries. Combined, the predators and parasites have caused health care costs to escalate because of insurance fraud and abuse, unreasonable malpractice lawsuits and jury awards, fraud and abuse in the worker's compensation system, fraud, waste and abuse of the Medicare and Medicaid systems, and profiteering by the pharmaceutical industry.

Government's failure to act is unacceptable. Passing the buck to employers and employees is unacceptable. Universal health care is unacceptable. Self control and self policing in the health care and medical malpractice industries is nonexistent. However, hope is not lost. There is a solution to the health care crisis:


As the 2004 presidential election campaign unfolds into what promises to be ugly, selfish interest efforts to unseat President Bush at any cost, maybe we should take a deep breath and consider what is best for us and the country over the next four years and the following decade.

Indeed, it would be simply foolish to change presidents in the middle of the war against terrorism, particularly when the Democratic Party and the news media are blindly bent on doing everything possible to make Bush fail in the vital effort to win the war and ensure our national security -- even at the cost of weakening our national security and our economy, demoralizing our troops, and causing more terrorist attacks.

Whether Bush remains in the White House or not, after he's gone, we should be thinking about who will be able to handle what will undoubtedly be the toughest of times ahead for America. Someone who has a keen sense of history, who knows what's really going on here and around the world, who has the experience and extraordinary understanding to deal with public policy, and who has the articulate ability to clearly communicate with world leaders, the people and Congress in common sense terms.

That person will have to resolve the most difficult problems and circumstances, such as our national security, foreign policy, domestic policy, education, the economy and healthcare -- particularly when the aging boomer generation is on the verge of breaking the back of Medicare and Social Security and dumping the cost on fewer taxpayers.

That person was wrongly demonized by partisan political terrorists. And even though his own party shamelessly turned their backs on him, that person was and is the most capable leader in the United States. He is none other than the contract with America architect and former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich...

Gingrich is the antithesis of the dirty word that unworthy Democratic candidates unjustly threw around in a recent debate. Indeed, Newt Gingrich is undoubtedly the only person who is qualified to be the next president, preferably as an independent.

Below is my letter defending Newt Gingrich published in the Los Angeles Times just before the 1996 presidential election:

October 23, 1996

Newt Gingrich

What's so bad about Newt Gingrich? Should he be condemned for bringing fresh ideas and reform to the stagnant waters of Congress? Should he be ostracized for trying to balance the budget by amendment or otherwise? Should he be punished for attempting to correct the failing course of Medicare, Medicaid and public education? Should he be humiliated for his congressional accomplishments, bold candor and speaking the truth with logic and reason? If special interests, shallow Democrats, gutless Republicans, biased media and naive voters can crush doing the right thing and this man's courageous vision in government so easily, we're in much deeper trouble than we ever imagined.

Daniel B. Jeffs, founder
The Direct Democracy Center