By Doug Cunningham
U.S. labor unions in 2007 took more steps to organize globally and to try to come up with a strategy and the means to mobilize against the multinational corporate assault on workers rights. In April United Steelworkers President Leo gerard announced that America’s largest industrial union is exploring a merger with the big U.K. union Amicus.
[Gerard]: “Today is a very exciting day for working people in North America and working people in the U.K. But I think it’s also going to grow into a tremendous day for the future of working people everywhere. We’re committed that as corporations globalize and global capital tries to flex its muscles that we need to build a counter force.”
This will not be a happy New Year for millions of seniors. More seniors than ever are expected to fall into the Medicare Part D donut hole in 2008, the coverage gap that requires seniors to pay the full cost of their prescription drugs, according to the Alliance for Retired Americans.
Under the Medicare Part D rules pushed by the Bush administration and passed by Congress in 2003, seniors are on the hook for prescription expenses between the annual amounts of $2,510 and $5,726 in 2008. This gap of more than $3,200 has been dubbed the “donut hole.” The total costs for seniors in the donut hole, when you add in deductibles and co-pays, will hit $4,050, about $200 more than in 2007, the Alliance says.