Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 28, 2012
Regular readers will recall the entry entitled “Q: Why do hospitals charge $75 for aspirin? A: Because they can.,” which was posted Wednesday, May 2, 2012.
In another venue, I had posted the following remark in response to the exorbitant healthcare costs, “It’s a simple concept, really. Anytime anyone gets in between you & who you’re buying from, it costs more. Insurance does that.”
And it’s true.
It’s not trite.
Let’s consider this example: You’re at the grocery store in the check-out line, about to pay for your groceries which have already been bagged and placed in your shopping cart. When the clerk announces the total, you have some strange feeling because the total is about ten times as much as you imagined.
When you double check the price of milk you find the sticker says $2.50/gallon, but your clerk rang up $25. You double check the price of frozen spinach. The sticker price says $1.37, but the clerk rang up $13.70. The chocolate was $4.50, but the clerk rang up $45.00. And the lean ground beef, instead of the posted $2.60/lb, the 5lb chub was… $130.00.
Talk about sticker shock!
You are aghast at the price, and in frustrated terms exclaim that “there is obviously some gross mistake!” – to which the clerk replies, “Let me check with your Food Insurance Agent,” picks up a phone beside the register, presses one button, and whispers into the receiver.
Suddenly, out of a door leading to an inside office, Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who?, - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: business, California, cash, cost, Costco, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, discount, Discounts and allowances, doctors, Financial Services, greed, grocery store, Hawaii, health, health care, health insurance, healthcare, healthinsurance, hospital, hospitals, insurance, Insurance policy, investigation, law, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Times, medical bills, money, Obamacare, Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act, Paul Keckley, payment, profit, profit motive, research, spending, Times, United States, Vehicle insurance, X-ray computed tomography | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, April 22, 2012
Sam Walton spins in his grave.
It was only a matter of time, I suppose, before the eventual or inevitable happened.
Since the United States Supreme Court has ruled that corporations are persons, there should be no reasonable argument against arresting the corporation.
The problem is, how to do that?
The Chief Executives are not the corporation, so ostensibly, they couldn’t be arrested.
But then, could those Chief Executives be charged with criminal behavior for the actions of the corporation?
However, if we consider the The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 (FCPA) (15 U.S.C. §§ 78dd-1, et seq.) which is part of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and the elimination of some of the most important provisions of the Glass-Steagall Act, we might wonder if Republicans would have any problem eliminating the FCPA, since it addresses accounting transparency requirements under the and bribery of foreign officials.
It will definitely be interesting to see how Congress decides to handle this case.
Wal-Mart Hushed Up a Vast Mexican Bribery Case
April 21, 2012
MEXICO CITY — In September 2005, a senior Wal-Mart lawyer received an alarming e-mail from a former executive at the company’s largest foreign subsidiary, Wal-Mart de Mexico. In the e-mail and follow-up conversations, the former executive described how Wal-Mart de Mexico had orchestrated a campaign of bribery to win market dominance. In its rush to build stores, he said, the company had paid bribes to obtain permits in virtually every corner of the country.
The former executive gave names, dates and bribe amounts. He knew so much, he explained, because for years he had been the lawyer in charge of obtaining construction permits for Wal-Mart de Mexico.
Wal-Mart dispatched investigators to Mexico City, and within days they unearthed evidence of widespread bribery. They found a paper trail of hundreds of suspect payments totaling more than $24 million. They also found documents showing that Wal-Mart de Mexico’s top executives not only knew about the payments, but had taken steps to conceal them from Wal-Mart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark. In a confidential report to his superiors, Wal-Mart’s lead investigator, a former F.B.I. special agent, summed up their initial findings this way: “There is reasonable suspicion to believe that Mexican and USA laws have been violated.”
The lead investigator recommended that Wal-Mart expand the investigation.
Instead, an examination by The New York Times found, Wal-Mart’s leaders shut it down.
Neither American nor Mexican law enforcement officials were notified. None of Wal-Mart de Mexico’s leaders were disciplined. Indeed, its chief executive, Eduardo Castro-Wright, identified by the former executive as the driving force behind years of bribery, was promoted to vice chairman of Wal-Mart in 2008. Until this article, the allegations and Wal-Mart’s investigation had never been publicly disclosed. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: America, American, Bentonville Arkansas, bribery, corporate, corruption, craig herkert, crime, criminal, Eduardo Castro-Wright, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Lee Scott, Mexico, Mexico City, New York Times, news, Times, treason, US, Wal Mart, Wall Street, Walmart, Walmart México, WMT | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, March 30, 2012
This is the same 57-year-old Jane Smith, Circuit Court Clerk for Madison County, Alabama who plead guilty to three federal misdemeanors in federal court recently for sharing her high-level password to the state’s judicial system computer records in 2009, avoided jail time, was fined $5000, and placed on one year probation.
She was first elected in 2000, and to her credit, is widely credited with modernizing the clerk’s office and making it among the most efficient in the state.
Jane Smith, Circuit Court Clerk, Madison County, Alabama
Published: Friday, March 30, 2012, 7:08 AM
Madison County Circuit Clerk Jane Smith (Submitted photo)
HUNTSVILLE, Alabama — Madison County Circuit Clerk Jane Smith said Thursday she will soon stop collecting passport applications, which include a $25 processing fee she is personally allowed to keep.
Federal law sets the fee, and under Alabama law circuit clerks are allowed to keep passport handling fees. Smith said the law was in place before she was elected in 2001. The office began collecting the fees in 1977.
But Smith, who won a third term as clerk in the Republican primary March 13, said ongoing cuts to state court budgets and “continuing confusion over using these fees for official expenses” led her to decide to stop collecting the applications as of May 1.
The funds are not public, though they are collected as part of a public official‘s duties. Smith has said she deposits the collected fees into her bank account and Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: Alabama, Circuit court, corruption, Court clerk, deception, fraud, Huntsville, Huntsville Alabama, Huntsville Times, Jane Smith, Madison county, Madison County Alabama, news, Passport, Republican, Smith, Times | Leave a Comment »