Debate goes on
branch of government is counteredbalanced.
Terms of office holders were an integral part
In response to the November of maintaining the flexibility needed to avoid
Debate, “Should Supreme Court stagnation and revolution, while at the same
justices have life tenure?” time providing a thread of foundational con-
Y ES. Can Richard Davis give one clear exam- tinuity needed to ride out the highs and lows
ple of how Chief Justice William Rehnquist of national experiences.
“hung on past [his] prime and jeopardized the Bill Coultas, Olympia, WA
functioning of the court?” If he is not able to
provide one, and I, for one, believe he cannot, NO. Recently we saw that a Supreme Court
he should refrain from using unwarranted justice might not be fit to continue serving,
and unfair, not to mention counterproduc- but chooses not to retire. Although Justice
tive, references in arguing his case. Rehnquist was effective during his early years,
A.J. Kajlich, Woodway, WA the last years of his tenure were problematic.
It was difficult to watch him struggle during
NO. The court should be balanced and life his last years; it took away from his dignity
terms mean some presidents get to appoint and the dignity of the Supreme Court. There
judges and others don’t. With the new trend to YES. The purposes for life terms far out- should either be a mandatory retirement age
appoint younger judges, the imbalance of the weigh the cons. The authors of our Constitu- or a limit on the number of years that one can
court itself is likely to tilt radically. tion envisioned a society based on evolving serve on the Supreme Court.
Gail Davenport, Brideghampton, NY norms, not fads or emotional hot topics. Each Ruth Murciano, Englewood, NJ
Odds and ends
Mosaic connections medicines. In 30 years of practicing internal
One of your stories in medicine I have not once encountered an in-the October issue caught stance that made me suspicious of the
my attention. The story affordable medicines my patients get from
titled “A form of expression” these countries. Business Name
described how Barbara There are surely instances where med-Brownstein collected used ication errors occur because of name confu-plastic forms that once held sion. That occurs in this country as well. In Last Name
women’s swimsuits. She dis- order to avoid that, people should ask
tributed the forms to cancer their doctors to write the generic name of Address
survivors who then deco- their medicine on the prescription, not
rated them to depict their just the brand name.
experience surviving cancer. Stephen Brenner, M.D., New Haven, CT
I’m a mosaicist [one who makes designs
by inlaying small bits of material such as Consumer advocate David Horowitz responds:
stone, glass or, in this case, tile. I don’t work I agree that safe and effective medicines can be Zip Code
with plastic forms, but I did make some- purchased overseas. However, the main thrust
First Name Middle Initial
thing similar to Brownstein’s creative idea. of my article was to alert consumers that medi-
In fact, I often use packs of dishes I buy cines overseas can have the same names as
at Costco for my work. Costco’s a great place medicines purchased domestically—but be
to get materials for this kind of work. completely different drugs. Consumers every-
Leslie F. Miller, via e-mail where should always be confident they’re taking
the right medicine.
New address Delete
Don’t miss out on the latest news and
product information from Costco—include
your e-mail address on this form.
Does medicine travel well?
I was very disturbed when I read David Hats off to Costco
Information will remain strictly confidential.
Horowitz’s comments about “The dangers of I just read your magazine over lunch and
foreign drugs” in the November Connection. enjoyed it. Wish all companies in America
The fears he generates are so far unsubstanti- were run as thoughtfully and efficiently as
ated. There have, as yet, been no widespread Costco. I am amazed at your ingenuity and
reports of people being harmed by purchas- quality every time I enter your stores.
ing lifesaving drugs at prices they can afford. Gary Sender, via e-mail
Mail to: Subscription Department,
The Costco Connection, P.O. Box 34088,
Seattle, WA 98124-1088
Fax: (425) 313-6718
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In fact, there is more harm associated with
people failing to take medicines that they cannot afford. This is the case with far too many
of our elderly citizens who have limited budgets and many medicines.
Have something to say?
When doctors write prescriptions for
patients to send to Canada or the United
Kingdom, they appear to get safe and effective
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