Letters: G.I. Bill, stimulus, Christmas

Kai Ryssdal Jul 15, 2009
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Letters: G.I. Bill, stimulus, Christmas

Kai Ryssdal Jul 15, 2009
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TEXT OF STORY

Kai Ryssdal: That music can only mean one thing. Time for your comments about our coverage. First up this week, Michelle Brown from Menlo Park, Calif. She pointed out, as many of you did, that our history of the GI Bill, and how it helped a lot of Americans move up into middle class, only told half the story.

MICHELLE BROWN: Whole swaths of the population, particularly black servicemen returning from the war, were denied those services due to unjust banking and realtor practices. This means that their descendants do not benefit from the accrued wealth that your guest described.

Commentator Justin Wolfers did not so much describe as argue last week that we really do need another economic stimulus package. Justin laid out his logic. Robert Welles of Cupertino, Calif., lays out his.

ROBERT WELLES: When I heard Justin Wolfers argue that we need another stimulus I was reminded of the quote, “The beatings will continue until morale improves.” Honest, confidence-building leadership would produce better results than the discredited placebo of stimulus.

Sears is looking for a little stimulus to its sales. So, as we pointed out, it’s selling some Christmas merchandise now. Marlene Athie of Rockland, Md., says she’s still out looking for summertime stuff.

MARLENE ATHIE: I decided to replace my tatty old sunshade over my table on the deck. Much to the mirth of the employees at my local Home Depot, who wondered why I would be looking for such a thing now. All their stock had been sold. Christmas in July indeed. I’ll buy my new umbrella in December next time.

We did a different kind of retail story last week, about a different kind of retail. Walk-in health insurance stores. Florida Blue, a store operated by Blue Cross Blue Shield where customers can get help buying health coverage.

One critic we quoted in our story said the stores won’t do anything to make insurance easier to afford. But we didn’t ask Blue Cross about that, and we should have. Mark Wright is with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida.

MARK WRIGHT: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida created the Florida blue stores to assist people in making affordable health-care choices. The stores are intended to provide personal service primarily to individuals of small group customers to either find a plan that will help fill their needs or help customers with their service issues.

Some of you took issue with our story on movie tax credits. We told you about how the credits Massachusetts gives film companies weren’t really paying off. But there were some complaints that we didn’t put enough emphasis on the amount of indirect business movies bring with them.

Joe Maiella is president of the Massachusetts Production Coalition.

JOE MAIELLA: There’s no other sector of the Massachusetts economy that is performing as robustly as film production. Income generated from motion-picture making in Massachusetts has increased from $6 million to $676 million through 2008.

If you want to clarify something you heard, or correct it, drop us a line.

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