At long last, senior citizens all across our great land can expect action on a prescription drug plan that will work. President Bush, while on the campaign trail in 2000, in a Rose Garden ceremony on July 12, 2001 and on numerous occasions while on-the-stump for candidates vying for office in the mid-term elections of 2002, promised action on this difficult issue. And he’s making good on that promise now.
A new survey indicates that senior citizens may be looking in the wrong place when they ask Washington to do something about prescription drug prices. The survey of drug prices conducted by the 60 Plus Association showed price variations for generic drugs from 304% to an extraordinary 856%; and for brand-name medicines, such as Prilosec, Lipitor, Celebrex and Paxil, included in the survey, of from 53% to 175%.
The 60 Plus Association, representing thousands of seniors in all 435 Congressional districts, strongly opposes government intervention wherever and whenever it ought not be — and digital piracy and measures enacted to repel audio-video theft is one area where things are best left to the private sector.
Just over 25 years ago, when my 86-year-old mother was a sprightly 61, and working full time, Jimmy Carter called for the elimination of federal taxes on dividend income, as President Bush has just done. That was long before the great surge in stock ownership spawned by several Reagan-era tax changes, which enabled millions of Americans to set aside money for their senior years in individual retirement accounts (IRAs) and 401(k) investment plans. So President Bush’s proposal to end the double taxation on dividends should be welcome news to all of the estimated 84 million Americans who own stock, either directly or in retirement accounts. If they have children or stay-at-home or retired spouses, it should be good news to them as well. As a group, senior citizens should be the most thankful of all.
The 60 Plus Association strongly opposes any amendment or bill, which would allow the reimportation of prescription drugs. Senate bill S. 7 introduced last week by Senators’ Kennedy, Breaux, Mikulski, Daschle, Murray, Dodd, Leahy and others would weaken the Social Security Act by — among other things — allowing for the reimportation of prescription drugs from Canada.
In his January 9th remarks to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, V.P. Richard B. Cheney cited the President’s call for permanent — and immediate — tax relief for all Americans. Of note to the 60 Plus Association were the Vice President’s remarks for ending the Death Tax, once and for all.
In his January 7 remarks to the Economic Club of Chicago, President Bush articulated his vision for stimulating the economy. Americans are due to receive tax relief in 2004 and 2006 via legislation already passed by Congress in 2001. But the President’s call for making all tax rate cuts effective immediately will boost the economy today — now — in 2003 — when the shot in the arm will be most effective.
Roger Zion states, “About 20 years ago President Ronald Reagan asked me to serve as his Chairman of the Synfuels Corporation in Washington in the wake of a close to $100 billion appropriation by the Democratic Congress to build a massive synfuels effort in view of the quadrupling of oil prices, the oil embargo– the lines at all the gas stations, etc.”