(Continued from page 16)
hensive about a program providing
benefits for disabled people. He said
he hael great faith in solutions obtained in the competitive free enterprise of today. Abilities, Inc., was
organized by handicapped people
almost four years ago. Their basic-
principle was that they would accept
no charity. Borrowing $8,000 from
local citizens at interest, anel paying a
prevailing wage, this unicpie organization began to compete for contracts
in the electronics field. In its third year
of operation Abilities, Inc., had grown
to 169 employees, ancl its gross sales
exceeded $600,000. It might be added
that represented in its group of employees, all severely disabled, is every
known static and progressive illness. It
is estimate-el that 20 per cent of the
employees could qualify for retirement anel also disability benefits. Some
employees are as much as 82 years
Mr. Viscardi commented, further:
I come- to indicate my apprehension that
we may stigmatize tin- disabled hy this
legislation; we may condone the ignorance
anel the misunderstanding which exists;
and we might then deprive millions of our
citizens of thc right to know a productive
lifs- and have tnem resigned to subsidy,
which is not their heritage as Americans.'"
There is a growing concern among
authorities on the subject about emphasis being placed on continuing disability rather than on rehabilitation.
The Task Force- He-port on the Handicapped, of the Office of Defense-
Mobilization, in 1952, concluded:
. . . The term "totally disabled" is a
term we are today beginning to feel applies to very few people. . . . Any benefit
which diminishes the incentive toward
rehabilitation and self support is socially
Wayne B. Warrington, commissioner of the Arizona State Department of Public Welfare, pointed to the
clangers involved in a disability benefits program. His opinion was that
H. B. 7225 will do much to destroy the
self-sufficiency of our citizenry. He
cited, as a ease in point, a hypothetical
man of the future who. at age 50, de-
c-icle-s he has a physical impairment
which will be of long duration. Inasmuch as he has, over .i period of many
years, paid a considerable sum of his
income to the federal government as
an "insurance premium," he may well
feel that the government has a great
deal of his money — money to which
he is entitled.18
Senator Byrd stated that later disability benefits may doubtless be- paid
for partial disability, and when the
health of 70 million persons is dealt
with, a vast field will be opened, one
of such magnitude that no one can tell
where it will end. He said that lie has
seen many an aid program start at the
mouse stage ancl grow to elephantine
Se-nator Carl T. Curtis (B-Neb.),
speaking in opposition to an amendment proposed by Senator George,
had this to say:
Whatever differences there are in the
language of the George- Amendment -mil
the disability provisions of ... H. R. 7225
an- uf ss-ry little consequence. Both proposals would put the United States government into tliE- business oi paying cash
liE-riE-fits for physical disability. ... Il is a
broad . . . step in the- fie-lel of social legislation.
It may he- argued that this is a modest
program. . . . Let no one he deceived by
that approach. It is hut tin- beginning. . . .*•
Senator Curtis went on to point out
that legislation of short duration was
not being dealt with; rather, the Social
Security system had been set up to
run in perpetuity, ancl future costs
must be reckoned with — costs of from
ten years to 100 years. He stated, further, that elective public office holders
sometimes erred, in their ideas as to
what their constituents wanted. He
said that if it were possible- to get the
mathematics of the proposition across
to the majority of the people, doubtless the Social Security revision would
have little support.
Many forward-looking Americans —
representing those both for anel against
Social Security changes — realize that
in addition to reckoning witli the hundreds of millions of dollars which will
be the immediate cash outlay for a
new, liberalized program, there must
be considered, additionally, those persons who will go from doctor to doe-tor
until they can secure the necessary
medical evidence to support their disability claims.20
Opponents of the changes in the
Social Security system warn that the
people would do well to examine ALL
changes in the round, pointing out that
the new, revised program commits
posterity. Anel, conceivably, it may be
that posterity, busy with weightier
problems of unemployment, inflation,
and overpopulation, will be unable to
pick up the tali for future liberal
Social Security benefits.
Also, critics claim, one should not
lose sight of tbe fact that the value of
the American dollar has long been on
the wane, and that no matter what
benefits are provided, doubtless they
will lose value through the- years-
thereby contributing to a most insecure security.
At any rate someone will have to
pay for the revised program. The
"gimme" group and the "something*
for-nothing" clique have not yet
seemed to grasp the fact that sum'"
body, somewhere, some time, will hav*
to ante up the necessary wherewithal*
That "somebody" is tbe taxpayer*
his children, and his children's children. END
"Ibid., p. 11885.
"■Ibid., p. 11887.
-■Ibid, p. 11870.
w-V-t (Continued from page 17)
cerebral thrombosis. It accounts for
perhaps ten per cent of disability
cases. Then comes hypertension, or
high blood pressure. Also, there is
arthritis, multiple sclerosis, diabetes,
ancl eaneer. All the-se diseases are easily determinable by doctors in so far
as disability is concerned.
Senator William Langer (R-N.D.)
state-el that he had received letters
from doctors who claim the door has
been opened to socialized mediciB*?
He saiel that he- eliel not agree wi"1
them." Senator Walter I". George (D'
Ga.), speaking iu this respect als°-
saiel it was bis personal conviction tM
the eloor to socialized medicine ha"
not been opened. He stated, furtbC
... So long as we- retain our present
freeze system and our free- economy!
socialized medicine can be brought iot°
this country only by the doe-tors tlu-iH'
selves. Someone should have the coura|$'
to say to tlii-in that if they continue tl'
make trifling objections, they may inviW
Something had. . . . The doctors alone i-1"
"84 Congresswnal lli;nr,l t 1956), ie. 11H.17.
Facts I-'oium News, October, 19$