In a new blog post in Rolling Stone, Matt Taibbi writes about a bi-partisan bill called "Freedom to Invest Act," which would "temporarily" reduce the effective corporate tax rate to 5.25 percent for all profits corporations earned abroad if the funds are brought back into the U.S. The amount in question is about $1 Trillion, which would otherwise be taxed at 30 to 40%. Read more about Matt Taibbi: The Evil Corporate Tax Holiday Is Baaaaaack!
The transfer of vital organs from the have-nots to the have-mores doesn't just play out in cinematic goings-on in seedy London hotels, but also in the humdrum precincts of the American health (couldn't) care (less) system. In a recent press release, the Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) reveal that "People who lack health insurance are about 20 times more likely to donate their liver or a kidney for a lifesaving transplant than to receive one". Read more about The uninsured give more ... organs
He says his name is Mr. Margin.
Lambert asked why they no share the monies. The NY Times article linked above is instructive.
Banks are holding on to the cash to prop up the stock price for investors (sure, sure) and especially to keep the stock prices propped so the top execs (whose lifestyles are dependent on borrowing money against the stocks they own in the companies they run) aren't busted out. Read more about Call in on Line 1
Karen George is in extreme pain, taking "daily doses of Klonopin, Flexeril, and Lortab", but Aetna won't cover surgery to correct her disconnected jawbone, because it is "cosmetic".
Now that I have your attention, I want to change the subject from bashing Aetna. Read more about Aetna says your pain is ugly
At American Medical News, a website of the American Medical Association, Emily Berry does some pretty good low-flying snark as she reports on the latest marketing ploys of "health plans":
Health plans are on a marketing mission. They "want you to know" how to "thrive" by turning to them for "guidance when you need it most" because "it's time to feel better," and their business is "helping people live healthier lives."
or, Why Does Aetna Hate Ruth Kaufman's Toe?
There are two strands here: denial of care, and lack of transparency.
My health insurance, for which I pay $395 per month, will not cover the foot surgery my doctor says I need: a toe joint replacement that is supposed to last 20 years and which will restore mobility and reduce pain.
The first concept you need to understand is the Medical loss ratio. You and I are losses in insurance industry lingo.
The medical loss ratio refers to the percentage of dollars actually spent on medical care versus administrative costs or profit. The higher the ratio, the more money is being spent on actual delivery of care. Components of the medical loss ratio include payments to physicians, hospitals, pharmacists and other providers of health care.
According to Market Watch, Aetna CEO Ronald Williams "earned" nearly $43 million in total compensation in 2007. The census bureau set the 2007 poverty line for a single person at $9944 (over 65) or $10,787 (under 65); let's just call it a nice round $10,000. Read more about Aetna's CEO is worth 4,300 poor people
That prescription you just picked up at the drugstore could hurt your chances of getting health insurance.
An untold number of people have been rejected for medical coverage for a reason they never could have guessed: Insurance companies are using huge, commercially available prescription databases to screen out applicants based on their drug purchases.
The three-year examination involved 29 states and was helmed by Washington State insurance commissioner Mike Kreidler and Alaska insurance director Linda Hall.
The companies targeted sales to self-employed individuals and sold health plans through associations.
Often, the agent or company did not adequately explain the health benefits.
On July 2, the company said it would pay $895 million to settle a class-action lawsuit led by the California Public Employees Retirement System. It also said it was cutting 4,000 jobs nationally, or just under 6 percent of its workforce, and reduced its forecast 2008 profit for the second time.
My very own corporate parasite, Aetna, is losing the battle for public opinion in the pages of New Jersey's Bridgeton News. In a story on the reaction to Aetna's decision to drop The Center for Diagnostic Imaging (CDI) of Cumberland County from its network, Andrea Scapellato, whose husband has been depending on CDI for regular ultrasounds, is quoted:
"First you have to pay for insurance, and then you can't even go where you want to go," she said. "We live in the United States, not communist China or Russia." Read more about Private health insurance is communist
Meanwhile, the lowly life-forms who actually need health care abandon all hope in the health (couldn't) care (less) system: Read more about Aetna: stock price up; human beings: expectations down
Today’s Health Blog jargon of the day is rescission, the insurance industry’s practice of revoking individual insurance policies because of health-related mistakes or omissions on the application for coverage. ...
... Now it looks like the push-back against rescission may be spreading. Henry Waxman, a Democratic California Congressman, held a hearing on the subject yesterday and said his oversight committee plans to investigate the issue nationally.
As a resident in a Los Angeles hospital, he tries to get the on-call orthopedic surgeon to come in the middle of the night to treat a five-year-old with a severe broken leg. Read more about A 5-year-old howls in pain. The health "care" system thrives.