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Will The Affordable Care Act Help The Poor?

Last week’s Health Tip, “Is Obama Care The Answer To Our Health Care?” generated a lot of mail — mostly positive, but a few quite critical. A representative sampling of those letters follow…

“Rev. Malkmus, Great article that hits the health care problem right on the head. Health will never come to the people of these United States until people learn to take responsibility for their own individual health. Health can never, nor will it ever, come by way of a government controlled Health Care plan. Keep up the excellent work.”

“Dearest Reverend, Without health care reform, millions of low income Americans would no longer get the help they need and without which they would die. Without health care reform, many others with pre-existing conditions would cease to get help after they run out of money. I hope you care about them – Jesus does. Rev. Malkmus, I beg you, next time you write articles against the poor, you consult with Jesus.”

That Second Letter Hurt!

To be accused of writing “articles against the poor” really hurt. I am such a champion of the poor – spending hours sharing with various poor individuals (as well as well-to-do people, and anyone else who will listen) how they can improve their health by simple diet and lifestyle changes that can be paid for with food stamps and government assistance checks.

I Know What It’s Like To Be Poor

As I look back on my life, I was poor according to the world’s standards! But I never realized I was poor, nor did I ever expect someone else to come to my rescue because I didn’t have very much of this world’s stuff.

I was raised in a home that was fiercely independent! It was a home that would never consider a handout or food stamps or welfare, or expect someone else, including the government, to take care of our needs. We believed that all of our needs or wants were to come through hard work by those in our household.

I grew up during depression days – the 1930s. I never received an allowance nor was I ever paid for chores I did in my home, and I did a lot of chores while growing up. Beginning at age eight I started doing chores for neighbors to earn money for haircuts and other incidentals. My parents never paid for any school activities nor did I expect them to.

The only clothes my parents bought me were underwear and socks for each Christmas. Those were my Christmas presents each year. The rest of my clothes were provided by a well-to-do neighbor who had a son just a little older than I and I wore his hand-me-downs until I was in high school.

From ages 12 to 15, I delivered 80-100 newspapers by foot after school and on Saturdays for $4.00 to $5.00 per week. This gave me money to start buying my own clothes and start a savings account. For recreation we played stickball as time allowed after school with a broom stick and a tennis ball. I never could afford a baseball glove or bat.

From ages 16 to 18, I worked behind a soda fountain and delivered prescriptions on bicycle after school and on Saturdays for $16.00 per week. During my tour of duty in the United States Navy during the Korean War, my pay was $99.00 a month.

The first church I pastored, my salary was $35.00 per week plus a parsonage. In all my years of pastoring, nearly 20 years, my salary was never more than $150.00 a week plus housing. And I never took food stamps or enrolled in a government program to help pay the bills while I supporting a wife and four children. I even tithed my income.

Just before Rhonda and I were married in 1992, I had lost my home and everything I owned in a fire. Having only enough money to build a block basement with a tarp over the top to keep out the rain, a wood stove for heat, water from a pond, and a 5-gallon bucket for a toilet, I started life anew 25 years ago, at the age of 55.

I met Rhonda at a “How to Eliminate Sickness” seminar I was giving in 1991. She had debilitating arthritis and was seriously overweight. Well she got on the diet I was teaching to see if it could help what the doctors could not for the past 10 years. Within a year of the diet change her arthritis was gone and she had lost 85 pounds. I love to tell people that after I rebuilt her body I married her!

It was into this block basement with a tarp for a roof I brought Rhonda after our marriage on April 11, 1992. When we were married, neither of us had any money, but we had a great love for God and each other, and a desire to share God’s Genesis 1:29 diet, the diet that been responsible for eliminating my cancer and Rhonda’s arthritis.

My 6-year-old 1986 Mazda pickup escaped the fire and I used it as collateral to borrow $1,000 from the bank to start Hallelujah Acres. With that $1,000 I paid the rent for a month for an 11-foot-wide storefront, purchased some tables and chairs along with produce for the restaurant and a few products to sell.

Rhonda and I lived on our tips (approximately $25.00 weekly) in those early days. Then we wrote some books for which we received royalty, proceeds from which we tithed to our church, and these royalties have made it possible for us to build a nice home and have nice automobiles.

Since Hallelujah Acres had its beginning in 1992, we have never taken a salary or a bonus from Hallelujah Acres. All our labors, health tips, seminars, food prep classes, etc. at Hallelujah Acres has been a ministry to help others experience the health God designed for his people.

Rather than taking a salary from Hallelujah Acres, we have poured all profits back into Hallelujah Acres so that we could continue to take God’s health message not only to the poor, but to whosoever would listen. I have never charged for a seminar or for the over 800 weekly Health Tips I have written, and Hallelujah Acres sent out a FREE magazine for almost 20 years.

I know what it is like to be poor. I’ve been there and done that!

In fact, I didn’t even consider myself poor during that time. But I also have learned that we don’t have to remain in a poor or sick condition. Rather than complaining “poor me” or depending on someone else (including government) to provide my needs in both the physical and financial area, I have followed God’s way.

The Bible says “If a man won’t work, neither should he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10) and “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Galatians 6:7). I have learned that through hard work on my part, financial needs, living conditions, and health can be improved.

We don’t have to be victims!

I thank God that He has allowed me to grow up in a country where a person has been rewarded when they worked hard to achieve and allowed to be poor if they didn’t want to work. Sadly, government now attempts to convince people that the poor are victims and others are responsible for taking care of them. Health care reform is a case in point.

Why The Affordable Care Act Does Not Help The Poor

The Affordable Care Act takes the responsibility for a person’s health off of the individual and places it upon others (taxpayers). When others are going to pay health care costs when a person becomes sick, what motivation is there for that person to eat a healthy diet and live a healthy lifestyle?

I look around me today and I see that no matter what a person’s income, the majority are overweight (over 60% of the population). The poor are just as overweight, and sometimes more so, than those with higher incomes.

The government is responsible for a lot of that extra weight. Food stamps can be used to purchase the unhealthiest, weight-gaining foods.

Then, the government comes to their rescue by paying the costs for doctors and drugs — which never make anyone well — keeping them dependent on a corrupt medical system and on government for their health care.

The Affordable Care Act doesn’t encourage people to take control of their own health through a healthy diet and lifestyle; it encourages people to neglect their health by providing free health care when they get sick.

There is no motivation to change an unhealthy lifestyle when others pay the bills for indiscretion!

I want all people, poor or otherwise, to be well. But no one experiences wellness unless they stop depending on doctors, drugs, and government to take care of their physical problems.

The only hope and solution is to eliminate sickness through educating everyone about how to eat and live so that they don’t become sick in the first place.

Sadly, the Affordable Care Act is not geared toward that end.

It Gets Worse…

Going to doctors for anything other than accidents is hazardous to the health of the poor as well as everyone else in America. Some 500,000 deaths in America each year are not caused by the physical problems people experience, but rather doctor mistakes and reactions from drugs used to treat the symptoms of these people that came to them with sickness caused by an improper diet and lifestyle.

The more people turn to drugs, the greater the potential for new, physical problems!  Every drug is liver toxic and produces an adverse reaction within the body for which other drugs are often prescribed.

It’s a vicious downhill cycle.

So what’s the solution? As I have said so many times before, the solution to our health care crisis is prevention!

Let’s teach the people of our land how to eat and live so that sickness never manifests in the first place and thus they have no need for doctors, hospitals, or drugs to cover up their symptoms.

Without sickness, there would be no need for health insurance or for someone to pay the bills of those who go to doctors for treatment.

Without sickness, health care costs would almost cease, and the only costs would be for those who have accidents and whose bodies need to be put back together.

Prevention Through The Hallelujah Diet

If you are not already on the Hallelujah Dietclick here to give it a try! Multitudes have made this diet change that we teach here at Hallelujah Acres, and experienced normalization of weight, as well as the elimination of almost all their physical problems.

Next week, the good Lord willing and if the creeks don’t rise too high we will return with another exciting issue of the Hallelujah Acres Health Tip. Trust you will join us and that you will share these Health Tips with friends and loved ones.


  1. Veggie Lady November 12, 2013

    Oh, Rev. Malkmus, you’ve hit the nail squarely on the head! I love your response to this negative naysayer. The realistic values you were raised with match millions of seniors today (including me), even though it seems these same values are being trashed too, all in the name of idealistic diversity & tolerance. Hard times usually bring on realism, but not in today’s world of idealism, where so many are literally being taken care of by Big Gov. This naysayer’s comments are indicative of Big Gov’s brainwash & justifications. You are truly a beacon of light. I am so glad you persevered in your intention to spread the word of good nutrition & lifestyle change for better health instead of drugs, drugs, drugs. This TRUTH threatens SO MANY. People have become very lazy today. That’s the root of the problem, I think.

  2. Thank you for being a good example. There are people out there with extenuating circumstances, and hopefully they won’t be hurt by thinking that it is all easy to fix, but with perseverance(and the gov’t off our backs and no longer dictating what to do, how to do it and what standards we must live by) it still can be done. Wow, good job Rev Malkmus

  3. Antonio martinez November 15, 2013

    That Second Letter Hurt!
    Dear Rev. I don’t think you see yourself anymore, I read you all the time and many a times it feels like you care more about $$$$$$$$$$$$ than any thing else

  4. Linda Nitzschke February 18, 2014

    Amen! You will always have your detractors, Rev. Malkmus, who just cannot or will not ever “get it.” Don’t dwell on them….think of the many who do get it and appreciate where you’ve been and where you’re going, and all the good you’ve done for the many all along the way. The surest way to drive yourself nuts is to try to please everyone. (Jesus, himself, told me to tell you that!)

    • Been there May 21, 2014

      You and others like you, in support of Reverend Malkmus must be very healthy. You don’t have crippling arthritis, heart disease, cancer, blindness, mental disabilities, PTSD from military or other causes. What you don’t have, though, is compassion for those that do or those who don’t have the credentials to find one of the few career positions that are available. Have you ever tried to raise a family of four, or more, on minimum wage for an employer who doesn’t provide health insurance? Apparently not in these times. But you and those like you who have a job and are able to get your employer to provide health insurance or make enough to money to provide it themselves. No. All of you and your cronies do is look down your noses at these people, label them as degenerates and leave them to die. All I can say is, I hope God has the same mery and compassion on you as you have on those you condemn.

  5. Rosemerry Blash April 15, 2014

    Dr. Malkmus,
    Thank you for shedding light on the reality of self reliance and hard work and the fact that we all have choices to make. God has given us the ability to get wealth and live healthy, happy lives.

  6. Been there May 21, 2014

    Been there,
    Just wanted to let you know, Rev, I worked hard, all my life, too and proud to do it. But, that was yesterday year and a lot of things has changed.

    I have read all of these letters and they all make good points. I do, however, have a few questions. What would the guy who lived through the depression have done if he did not take the hand out of clothes? I agree, there is a problem with obesity, (60%) in this country, BUT, are all of these obese people poor? I think not. What of the other 40%? Are they all rich? Can they provide their own medical insurance? How many of them are disabled, due to physical or mental illnesses not related to obesity? Do we let them die with them? I’m sure everyone, poor or wealthy, want to provide well, for their families. There will always be the haves and the have nots. Some will work hard everyday of their working years, and still not be able to make ends meet. Most jobs, today, are part time and the employers do not provide health insurance. Do we let them get sick and possibly die, leaving their families, with young children or other dependent family members to die also? I agree that there are a lot of people who take advantage of the system. The corporate term, “DOWNSIZING,” has had a tremendously negative effect, on the working class. A lot of people have worked decades, waiting for their right to retire, only to be downsized out, because they make too much money or their employer doesn’t want to pay for their retirement. It’s not entirely the working man’s fault. Fewer and fewer employers cut back hours on their employees, putting them in a “part time status” so they, according to the laws of the land,are not required to pay for their insurance. All of those who are in charge say that the jobless rate is lower than ever. Frankly, I don’t believe that for a minute. But, of all the jobs that have been created, how many pay at the same rate as those that were lost? How many of the newly created jobs are full time positions? How many new jobs provide the health insurance, so those who work for a living don’t have to use government assistance? I was six months short of a full retirement, only to be downsized out, because I made too much money. I went back to college, earned my Master’s Degree and on several interviews, found out I was too old to be hired. “OH!”, you say, “There are laws against this.” Maybe so, but I’m still not working, after eleven years of looking. It’s not the worker’s fault. If the government had not written laws that allow corporate America to do this to their employees, we would still have full time jobs; we would have health insurance; we would not need to look to our government, for help. I could go on and on, but, I think I’ve made my point. Our government will send billions of dollars overseas to help other countries. They need to take care of their own, first. But, that’s another story.

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