Letter: Blue Cross of Rhode Island Turns to Subscribers To Pay Its Corruption Fine

Blue Cross Blue ShieldBitter denunciations of monopolistic greed poured from the podium at a public hearing in Providence on January 17th. Subscribers in the “direct pay” class of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Rhode Island hoped these words would block a rate-increase request filed with the state Health Insurance Commissioner in November, 2007. If the commissioner approves the request, as many fear he will, subscribers will face an average rate increase of 12.7 percent in their monthly premiums.

Rhode Islanders traveled on one of the coldest nights of the winter to attend the hearing in downtown Providence.  Following opening arguments from the Blue Cross attorney and then the assistant state Attorney General, a Blue Cross subscriber and attorney by profession was the first to speak. Testifying on the excessive costs of health care for himself and his family, as well as the rising cost of food, gasoline, and heating oil, the speaker demonstrated the hardship he and his family would suffer if rates were to increase. The men and women who followed him testified to the same troubles, and in words of desperation, disgust, and outrage, implored the commission to deny the rate increase.

Letters: Re: Mercenaries in Iraq

In this brief letter, Joe shows his interest in a previous SA article on contractors in Iraq and explains why mercenaries cannot be controlled like a regular army.

Letters: The War, Prisons, and the Economy

In this letter, Bud Deraps makes note of the Prison Industrial Complex (PIC) joining with the Military Industrial Complex (PIC), making huge profits in the process.  The increasing number of private prisons, laws made to fill them up more easily, and corporate interest in prison labor are noted as well.

Letters: UAW Dissidents Stand Up

In this letter, Chris Ryan explains the role of dissidents in the past, noting how their sacrifices have brought gains.  He notes that there are those called dissidents that opposed the new Chrysler contract, and that these dissidents and other workers must unite to overcome the failures that a are a product of workers' disunity.