Putin gained strength through Obama’s weakness

Former President Obama’s policy of leading from behind, growing organically from his flawed belief that America is the proximate cause of much global turmoil, greased the skids for Vladimir Putin to become an international predator who, along with other miscreants speaking Chinese, Arabic and Farsi, have exploited Western distraction and/or weakness, the latter manifested by standing back from the fray, hoping that better angels will prevail.

Mr. Obama assured us ad nauseam that the arc of history, the former president’s comfort blanket in lieu of effective strategy, is bending in our direction. While awaiting the fateful arc, Russia seized Crimea, stoked insurrection in eastern Ukraine and put military forces into Syria, thus making Putin the capo di tutti capi of that critical country.


Meanwhile, the Baltic states are trembling and the Chinese, busy converting the South China Sea into a militarized water park, are toasting their revived relationship with Russia.

The predator Putin, not one to waste an opening, capitalized on our former president’s weakness and crowded our electoral space by intruding into our presidential selection.

The arc is not a snark, but it is a boojum nonetheless.

From Paul Bloustein, Cincinnati, Ohio

Democrats, Republicans: Work together to improve healthcare for the American people

Congress is of the opinion that the majority of the American people want them to repeal and replace the so-called Affordable Care Act, which in reality was intended to be a gift to the insurance industry that evolved into a bitter pill that even the giants of the insurance industry could not swallow.

I believe the majority of the American people want the Affordable Care Act repealed. I do not believe they want it replaced immediately with another ill-conceived gift to the insurance industry. 

The Democrats, without input from the Republicans, gave us the ill-conceived so-called Affordable Care Act, which has been proven to be a disaster, and by their own admission, needs to be changed. 

Now, the Republicans want to craft a replacement bill of their own doing.

Both Republicans and Democrats claim they will give the American people better healthcare and lower costs, which everyone knows is of course is an oxymoron. Still, in their infinite wisdom they want to add another of layer of cost with more mandates, regulations, subsidies, tax breaks and gifts to the insurance industry whether it be privately or governmentally controlled. 

While I am not a self-proclaimed expert like the members of Congress who seemingly believe they know what is best for the rest of the people, I do have a small measure of common sense. Common sense and knowledge of the past history tells me that no matter what eventually passes, not everyone will be happy, and the politicians will use this to keep their jobs, the lifestyle and power it affords them, and the American people will pay the price.

I challenge the self-proclaimed experts, Democrats and Republicans, to prove me wrong. I challenge you to get together and show the American people that you can give us better healthcare for lower cost, instead of just creating another football you can kick down the road like Social Security for your benefit in future elections. 

From Jim Posmer, Lakeland, Fla.