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Columns

February 10, 2009

Travels with Uncle Chet: An open letter to Obama

COLUMBUS _ ``Dear President Obama,'' Uncle Chet read from a yellow legal pad.

``Looking for a job?'' asked Hon, opening cartons of ice cream.

``Just a job well done,'' said Uncle Chet.

``You're not on him already?'' I asked.

``In the words of that half-baked Alaskan, `You betcha!'''

``Give him a chance,'' I said. ``He's only been in office two weeks.''

``But he's digging in deeper in Afghanistan and you know that's a mistake,'' said Uncle Chet. ``That's why I writing him: `Dear Mr. President: Get out of Afghanistan. We have no business being there. Afghanistan did not attack us.

"Some criminals, mostly Saudis and Egyptians hiding out in Afghanistan, did attack us several years ago, and international police agencies should arrest them and hold them for trial at the World Court.

'Mr. President, after the United States was attacked on 9/11, almost every political leader on Earth, including Saddam Hussein, offered condolences and assistance. If we had worked with our peers around the world then, the guilty would have been caught, tried and punished and the ideal of human cooperation greatly advanced. Imagine, every nation on Earth going after just the guilty, led by that Saudi, Osama bin Laden, a former "freedom fighter," armed by the Reagan administration.'''

``I think we're going to sing 'Happy Birthday,''' whispered Alice, who's retiring this spring.

But he was wound: ```Mr. President, if you want to stimulate the economy, let everyone opt into Medicare. Then let Medicare drive down the outrageous cost of health care by using the bargaining power of say, 280 million customers. If people want to keep paying insurance companies 30 cents on the dollar, let them. But let the rest of us _ like you and the senators, like the Army, Navy and Marines _ have single-payer Medicare and make that the best plan in the world.

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