WHY ARE WE BEING BRAINWASHED ABOUT MEDICARE ADVANTAGE?
I was so happy to read Donald Hammen’s Medicare column in the December issue, because the private health insurance industry saturates every medium with its false advertising campaign for “Medicare Advantage.” Why doesn’t the Biden administration shut down this Medicare privatization scam? Medicare has the authority to regulate “Medicare Advantage” vendors and has recently invoked it, but UCare, UnitedHealth and the rest just keep buying every media slot to brainwash the public. It’s particularly annoying on Classical MPR, which is supposed to have a nonprofit mission, but every other break features a blurb shilling “Medicare Advantage.” It was Minnesota that got the Nixon Adminstration to approve Medicare HMOs, leading 30 years later to what is now “Medicare Advantage.” Minnesota should pass Senator John Marty’s Minnesota Health Plan (https://mnhealthplan.org
) while the DFL controls both the Legislature and the Governorship.
age 75, Medicare Part B enrollee
LETTER ASKING MINNEAPOLIS FOUNDATION TO RESCIND GRANT TO ALPHA NEWS
Dear Mr. Rybak: We recently learned that the Minneapolis Foundation acted as a pass-through for donor-directed funds to Alpha News in 2022. Given the timing of the grant, it is likely the funds were used to produce or promote the racist and highly misleading film “The Fall of Minneapolis.”
This film uses half-truths and outright lies to blame George Floyd for his own death while denying the police violence that killed him and that caused many injuries to journalists and to community members protesting that violence. At best, the film is a whitewash that harms the community by bolstering the status quo and sullying the name of a murdered Black man. Your website is filled with references to cultivating change and building racial equity. It is appalling that you would allow the Foundation to act as a conduit to Alpha News, a group with a proven record of racism. If a donor wanted you to direct funds to the Proud Boys, would you abide by such a request?
We demand that you rescind this grant and apologize to the community. Further, we demand that you review your foundation’s practices regarding donor-directed funding.
Michelle Gross, Communities United Against Police Brutality (4200 Cedar Ave. S); Nekima Levy-Armstrong, Racial Justice Network; Jaylani Hussain, CAIR-MN Executive Director; Toshira Garraway, Families Supporting Families Against Police Violence; Johnathon McClellan, Minnesota Justice Coalition; Monique Cullars Doty, Black Lives Matter Twin Cities Metro; Trahern Crews, Black Lives Matter Minnesota; Jess Sundin, Twin Cities Coalition for Justice for Jamar
ELECTED OFFICIALS NOT ALLOWING PUBLIC COMMENT AT COMMUNITY MEETINGS
I was at the Ward 11 “Public Safety Meeting” on Dec. 12. City Council member Emily Koski denied all opportunities for her constituents to ask about or present any community problem. The constituents were forbidden from raising a hand and asking a question. Koski employed many standard government tactics to eliminate public input in government decision making. She chooses the topic and “Safety Guest," accepts only written questions, censors the ones she doesn’t like, filibusters awhile, then the meeting is over. Zero community questions were asked or allowed to be asked.
Hennepin County has decided to listen less, as well. Commissioners used to listen three minutes, now it is two minutes or voicemail. Government and people listen to and respect each other less and less every day.