Friday, December 28, 2007

Utah Doctor Charged for Illegal Painkiller PrescriptionsDec 24th

More doctors are falling in the Federal search for those involved in illegal trafficking of prescription painkillers. And as we have seen before, doctors are not immune. One of the latest to fall is Dr. Warren Stack of Utah who was charged with 18 criminal counts that include illegal distribution of a controlled substance, conspiracy, health care fraud and money laundering. Up to 80 people a day received prescription opiate medications from Dr. Stack and five of them died because of it.

Initially arrested last spring and released, a federal arrest warrant was issued recently after his office was raided. Undercover officers found that for only $70 to $200 each they, too, could be one of the 80 people to whom Dr. Stack issued opiate pain medication prescriptions each day.

According to the indictment, “Stack would quickly review the patient’s file, make an inquiry as to whether the patient’s prescribed medications were still working, and issue a new prescription for controlled substances … without conducting even the pretense of a medical examination.”

Stack wasn’t the only one to go down for the crimes. His two office employees were also charged with consipiracy.

The final total: Stack allegedly received at least $750,000 for illegal oxycodone, OxyContin, methadone, Percocet and Endocet prescriptions. Five people died between 2005 and 2007 from overdosing on Stack’s prescriptions. Assistant U.S. Attorney Rich McKelvie said, “They died solely as a result of his distribution of those controlled substances.”

These overdose deaths mean that five of Stack’s 12 illegal distribution charges carry a potential prison sentence of 20 years to life. The other seven have a 20 year maximum.

If you or someone you love is addicted to painkillers or procuring prescriptions illegally, you, too, could be indicted for fraud, conspiracy, and illegal drug trafficking. Rather than risk it, consider treating the problem before it gets worse with a Suboxone detox and Suboxone treatment.

"Dr. Stokes is convicted of three different types of fraud convictions," U.S. District Judge Gordon Quist said. "He's not convicted of malpractice."

Employee: Stokes used same syringe many times

GRAND RAPIDS -- A former worker for Dr. Robert Stokes testified this afternoon that Stokes carried the same syringe as he went from patient to patient.

Jaime Droog suspected that Stokes used the same syringe on different patients. Stokes also re-used blades on his scalpels rather than discarding them like other doctors do.

Her testimony came as Stokes is to be sentenced for defrauding insurance companies of nearly $2 million.

Droog is also among thousands of Stokes' former patients allegedly put at risk by his unsanitary practices. Many were in the courtroom gallery. His former patients sent so many letters to the judge that he did not have time to read them all.

"Dr. Stokes is convicted of three different types of fraud convictions," U.S. District Judge Gordon Quist said. "He's not convicted of malpractice."

Stokes is to be sentenced today for defrauding insurance companies of nearly $2 million.

Still, several former patients of Stokes are expected to testify this afternoon in his sentencing hearing, with some telling how they visited his office numerous times to remove supposedly cancerous lesions and paid thousands in expenses not covered by insurance.

A patient, Anne Gulch, testified that Stokes told her in 2006 that she needed 30 to 40 moles removed because of their irregular shape and color. Stokes' staff told her the moles were pre-cancerous.

After she had five removed, she went to another doctor who told that that "nothing needed to be removed." She believed that Stokes only removed freckles.

Her testimony was to show that Stokes billed insurance companies for unnecessary procedures.

Hastings Mayor Robert May, who went to Stokes more than four years ago to have a lesion removed from his ear, plans to say his piece to the judge.

May said he ended up going back to Stokes every few weeks after Stokes told him he needed to have a different spot removed from his body, or that a lesion had become infected.

"It just got to the point we could not afford it any longer," May said outside the courtroom today, describing how his insurance carrier would not pay the full expense. He stopped going to Stokes in 2003.

A statistician testified in the hearing that Stokes, whose scheme included telling patients they had cancer so he could up fees for minor procedures, had bilked Blue Cross/Blue Shield and Medicare for $626,823 from 2001 to 2003. The figures did not include billings to other insurance companies.

Dennis Gilliland, a Michigan State University professor and expert in statistics, provided the loss estimate as a government witness.

Another estimate said that he fraudulently billed Medicare and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for more than $1.9 million between 2001 and 2006.

Federal sentencing guidelines called for a prison term of 12 1/2 to 15 1/2 years, but prosecutors are urging the judge to consider a longer sentence, citing "an epidemic of fraud that infected Dr. Stokes' practice."

Stokes, 56, who worked from an office in East Grand Rapids and lives in a 14,000-square-foot estate on Reeds Lake, was convicted in April on 31 counts of health-care fraud.

Stokes' lawyers, who described him as a caring, compassionate doctor, sought a light sentence. They argued the feds over-estimated insurance losses and that his sentence shouldn't be influenced by allegations about inadequate sterilization of surgical instruments.

Letters from former patients, employees, colleagues, relatives and friends described a different Stokes: An honest, caring and dedicated doctor with high standards.

The conviction was Stokes' second. In November 1999, the then-47-year-old doctor shoplifted $33.94 worth of items -- sunglass cases, key chains, expandable tote bags and rolls of athletic tape -- from a Meijer store in Grand Rapids.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Attorney General Cuomo's office has widely publicized investigations into home health aides with bogus certifications.

Medicaid fraud collections rise
Associated Press
December 26, 2007 - 9:38AM

Anti-fraud programs and better monitoring by the Health Department, attorney general and comptroller have resulted in a reported $1 billion savings this year in Medicaid, the health care program for the poor.

New York spends about $7,500 per Medicaid enrollee, more than nearly every other state. The $47 billion system consumes a third of the state's budget.

A Health Department anti-fraud initiative, which used data mining to save $132 million, contributed to the $1 billion savings.

The agencies responsible for Medicaid have also been reorganized and integrated to better monitor waste.

Attorney General Cuomo's office has widely publicized investigations into home health aides with bogus certifications.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Experts estimate at least 3 percent of the nation's annual health care costs are lost to outright fraud

Health care fraud declines
State Medicaid program saves $1 billion in Spitzer's first year
By VALERIE BAUMAN, Associated Press
First published: Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Why can't all the states begin to implement these anti-fraud initiatives?
ALBANY -- A year ago, candidates for governor and attorney general promised voters they would crack down on Medicaid fraud to bring back millions of taxpayer dollars that have been wasted by unscrupulous doctors and scam artists.
So how have the winners, Gov. Eliot Spitzer and Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, done so far?

Pretty well, records show.

Changes the Health Department implemented under Spitzer's administration were largely responsible for a reported $1 billion savings this year in the health care program for the poor. That's about 1 percent of the total state funds budget. Both better administration and enforcement are cited in a program that some estimate loses billions to fraud and waste yearly.

A Health Department anti-fraud initiative, which used data mining to save $132 million, contributed to the $1 billion savings. The agencies responsible for Medicaid also have been reorganized and integrated to better monitor waste.

Cuomo's office has widely publicized investigations into home health aides with bogus certifications.

The investigations have saved the state about $110 million -- nearly double the $59 million recovered in 2006 when Spitzer was attorney general, officials said. That pales next to 2005, when Spitzer's attorney general office recovered $274 million in Medicaid fraud. About $63 million was recovered in 2004.

In 2007, the state comptroller's office identified more than $47 million in "potential" overpayments or inappropriate claims. It's unclear how much of that will be recovered by the state; officials said it's common to collect, but it can take years.

But don't expect all that recovered money to cut your taxes. It went toward other spending, mostly in health care, and toward reducing the state's budget deficit, expected to be at least $4.3 billion in the fiscal year starting April 1.

Experts estimate at least 3 percent of the nation's annual health care costs are lost to outright fraud. In New York's Medicaid program, that loss would represent $1.3 billion, according to officials in the state comptroller's office.

The fraud recovery target for the state's budget, which includes "cost avoidance" and funds that were recovered, was $430 million for 2007 and 2008 -- an increase over the $300 million in 2006-07. The agency has since increased that target to $505 million.

Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Mortgage securities cases

Monday, December 24, 2007 - 12:32 PM EST
Ruling leaves Credit Suisse on the hook in National Century lawsuits

A federal judge is allowing institutional investors in the defunct National Century Financial Enterprises to pursue about $2 billion worth of claims against Credit Suisse First Boston, which issued the company's "AAA"-rated notes.

U.S. District Judge James Graham in Columbus refused to dismiss most claims against the investment bank, saying the plaintiffs had clearly outlined allegations that the company made millions by marketing and selling notes it knew were worthless. He said a jury must decide that question.

National Century, of Columbus, went under in 2002, resulting in about $2.6 billion in investment losses. The company bought lump sums of unpaid bills from health-care companies and sold the receivables as securities to be backed by the collections.

However, the civil claims and a separate criminal case against the company's founders argue that executives were taking money for personal use by investing in receivables that were uncollectible or even nonexistent.

Several civil cases were consolidated before Graham, including lawsuits by the state of Arizona and several of its state entities, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Lloyds TSB Bank PLC and New York City pension funds. Not all of the plaintiffs sued Credit Suisse alongside National Century, so the claims affected by Graham's Dec. 19 ruling don't equal all the investment losses.

Credit Suisse, which bought about $3 billion in notes from National Century and sold them to institutional investors on the secondary market, had argued it wasn't liable because it did not make misrepresentations to clients, had no knowledge of the underlying fraud at National Century and was protected by disclaimers in the marketing materials.

But Graham said the complaints alleged that Credit Suisse received audit reports, letters and internal memos that indicated it knew of the fraud as early as 1998.

"The Court finds that the complaints put Credit Suisse at the center of the alleged scheme," he wrote.

Graham also rejected the disclaimer argument out of hand.

"As Plaintiffs argue, it would defeat the securities laws if parties could escape liability for their own deliberate misrepresentations by inserting boilerplate disclaimers into offering materials," he wrote.

Neither Credit Suisse officials nor their attorneys were immediately available for comment.

Kathy Patrick, Houston-based lead counsel for several of the major investors including the state of Arizona and several of its state entities, said the clients look forward to taking the case to a jury and were pleased the judge didn't let Credit Suisse off the hook on a technicality.

"Credit Suisse's position in this case was quite startling to our clients," she said Monday. "They were entitled to rely on the truthfulness of the statements they received."

The ruling will be important precedent for future lawsuits in mortgage securities cases, she said.
"Investment banks routinely try to avoid liability after the fact by invoking these disclaimers," Patrick said.

Credit Suisse marketed $3 billion of the National Century's asset-backed securities.


A federal judge in Columbus has denied motions to dismiss over $1.6 billion in claims filed by investors against Credit Suisse First Boston in a lawsuit that stems from the collapse of an Ohio company that affected health care providers across the country. Plaintiffs in the suit are investors who formerly held "AAA"-rated notes issued by now-defunct health care financing company National Century Financial Enterprises. National Century and its subsidiaries shut down in October 2002 when investors discovered the company had hidden financial problems from investors and auditors. The company's collapse is one of the largest defaults of "AAA"-rated debts securities in decades, and Credit Suisse marketed $3 billion of the National Century's asset-backed securities.

The Associated Press

Monday, December 24, 2007

Hillary Clinton; Think she is the toughest babe in the business.....

Think again....

Previously, Fortune has featured two other Palmetto State movers and shakers of the fairer sex on its front page: financier Darla Moore of Lake City and Charleston's Sallie Krawcheck, a former brokerage analyst who is now a high-level executive at Citigroup Inc.

Of the three, Moore's cover stood out because of the memorable tag line that described the part-time Charleston resident as "The Toughest Babe in Business."

Reach John P. McDermott at 937-5572 or jmcdermott

Rudy thinks Health Care should be Private.....

and should not have government interfere with your health!

Really Rudy?

We are well aware of the fact the LAWS of ECONOMICS are not working in our Health Care System in this country. Rudy states it is not fair to have the workplace responsible for offering health care and that the system now is too burdensome for the workplace. That is correct!

Why in the world is my employer deciding what my health care should be in the first place? Or is it because this is the only way we know and are too ignorant, or lazy or weak to find a better solution. Or is it that we just accept this and acknowledge that we never aggressively tried to RIGHT this WRONG. Let's not forget, this health care system in our country was implemented with the NIXON ADMINISTRATION. You remember him don't you? Mr. WATERGATE.

What about the fact that our "free market-driven" society should not include our health care system.

Really folks, ask yourself, "Why is my doctor calling MUMBAI, INDIA to get approval if my doctor can order a MRI for to attain a better diagnosis? Why ?


Let's look at your bundled contributions!!

LET THIS STORY BE TOLD......and it is not just Credit Suisse

National Century lawsuit moves closer to trial
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A lawsuit accusing Credit Suisse (CSGN.VX) of aiding fraud at bankrupt healthcare finance company National Century Financial Enterprises moved another step closer to trial after a U.S. judge said it was too soon to dismiss the suit, as requested by the Swiss investment bank.

In U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division, Judge James Graham said on December 19 it is too soon to dismiss the charges of debt holders, who accused Credit Suisse of underwriting securities issued by National Century, which the bank knew was committing fraud.

Credit Suisse argued it held a large number of National Century notes, and would therefore be foolish to knowingly help the company commit fraud.

The debt holders, who include MetLife Inc (MET.N) and the state of Arizona, said Credit Suisse continued selling National Century notes after learning of fraud at the company because that was the best way for the bank to reduce its exposure.

"Credit Suisse has challenged isolated portions of the complaints but does not offer any competing explanations of the pleaded facts that are as plausible as the Plaintiffs' explanations," Judge Graham wrote.

A spokeswoman for Credit Suisse declined to comment on Sunday. In a statement, Kathy Patrick, a lawyer at Gibbs & Bruns representing the largest group of plaintiffs, said, "We look forward to presenting (our) claims to a jury."

National Century filed for bankruptcy in 2002 after an auditor refused to sign its financial statements and lenders stopped advancing funds.

The Dublin, Ohio-based company was a multibillion dollar business that bought patients' bills from healthcare providers and packaged them into bonds for investors.

Since the company filed for bankruptcy, a dense tangle of litigation has developed as investors try to recoup their losses.

(Reporting by Dan Wilchins; Editing by Derek Caney)

BAILOUT? I think not.....the buck stops...LET THE TRUTH BEGIN

Credit Suisse Cannot Use 'Boilerplate Disclaimers' to Avoid Over $1.6 Billion in Claims

By AmericasNewsToday.Org staff

In a sweeping decision issued today, Judge James Graham of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio denied in virtually every respect motions to dismiss over $1.6 billion in claims filed against Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB) by investors who formerly held "AAA" rated notes issued by now-defunct National Century Financial Enterprises of Columbus, Ohio (NCFE). The largest group of investors is represented by Gibbs & Bruns L.L.P. of Houston.
The Court's ruling is highly significant for purchasers of asset-backed notes, an area of keen recent interest in light of the sub-prime loan crisis. The court categorically rejected Credit Suisse's argument that disclaimers included in the offering memorandum required the dismissal of Plaintiffs' fraud claims: "the disclaimers in the offering materials ... do not preclude Plaintiffs from showing that they justifiably relied on Credit Suisse's alleged misrepresentations." The opinion held that CSFB's disclaimer stating that it had done no independent investigation of its own "would seem beyond credulity," particularly to investors who knew that CSFB "had helped devise the note programs [and] helped draft the offering materials." The Court noted that "it would defeat the securities laws if parties could escape liability for their own deliberate misrepresentations by including boilerplate disclaimers into offering materials."
Among the investor plaintiffs were major banks, mutual funds, and insurance companies, along with the State of Arizona and a number of Arizona government entities. Kathy Patrick of Gibbs & Bruns, lead counsel for plaintiffs who held over $1.6 billion in NCFE notes, said that her clients feel vindicated: "Our clients are very pleased that the Court has rejected Credit Suisse's efforts to avoid responsibility for its actions by relying on technicalities. The securities laws require sellers of securities to tell the truth. We look forward to presenting these claims to a jury."
Columbus Ohio-based NCFE, which securitized healthcare receivables, collapsed in late 2002. Several of NCFE's officers and employees have pled guilty to fraud or other federal crimes, while the company's president, Lance Poulsen, and other top officers have been indicted and await trial in Ohio. The complaints and criminal indictments allege that NCFE raised billions of dollars that were supposed to be invested only by purchase of valid healthcare receivables, but substantial amounts of the money were diverted to other uses. The company's collapse is one of the largest defaults of "AAA" rated debts securities in decades. Credit Suisse marketed $3 billion of NCFE's asset-backed securities.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Stronger Whistle-Blower Protection Passes Senate

Stronger Whistle-Blower Protection Passes Senate
By Stephen BarrWednesday, December 19, 2007; Page D04
With nary an objection, the Senate approved legislation to strengthen protections for federal employees who reveal waste, fraud and abuse, setting up negotiations with the House on the first major expansion of whistle-blower rights since 1989.
The bill, sponsored by Daniel K. Akaka (D-Hawaii) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), was approved on a voice vote late Monday. The House in March approved a bill to strengthen whistle-blower protections for federal employees.
For six years, efforts to get whistle-blower legislation through Congress have been opposed by the Justice Department, blocked by senators and dropped from legislative packages at the last moment.
"It is easy to be cynical, but this is one genuine reform where Congress is doing its share," said Tom Devine, legal director for the Government Accountability Project, a whistle-blower protection organization.
The bill would protect federal employees who make any disclosure, permit employees to share classified information with members of Congress and protect whistle-blowers whose security clearances are revoked because of retaliation.
It also would set up a five-year experiment under which federal employees could take their cases to a nearby federal appeals court when challenging administrative rulings, rather than to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, as is now required.
There are 400 to 500 whistle-blower cases in the government every year, and advocacy groups contend that agencies often try to silence or discredit employees who speak out about waste and mismanagement.
Akaka said "recent instances of government waste, fraud and abuse clearly demonstrate the need to promote disclosure of wrongdoing." Collins said the Senate bill would help ensure that congressional committees "have access to the information necessary to conduct proper oversight."
The White House has objected to parts of the House and Senate bills, including provisions that would allow judicial review of executive branch decisions to revoke security clearances.
Because there are differences between the House and Senate versions, negotiators will begin work, probably next year, on a compromise, a congressional aide said.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

FCC , the 32yr old will decide; Media Matters disects Clinton -Giuliani ......

All I can ask is -Why not more disects ?
Just WHO or WHAT do we get our EDUCATION from about the MOST important issues within this country ? Health Care, Immigration, Jobs, Civil Rights,

Is there any one out there, other than Oprah to ask theAmerican people to stop and "THINK" , for themselves that is ?

Chris Matthews on Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani

On October 4, MSNBC host Chris Matthews professed his neutrality in the presidential race. "I'm pretty independent, in terms of the two parties," he said. "I have been just as tough on Bill Clinton and Hillary and Rudy and the whole bunch of them."
In order to ascertain whether this claim is true, Media Matters for America examined every evaluative remark Matthews made on MSNBC's Hardball during the months of September, October, and November about either Hillary Clinton or Rudy Giuliani, the two national front-runners for their respective parties' nominations during that period. We excluded instances in which Matthews was simply reporting facts (e.g. "A new poll shows Giuliani leading ... ") and restricted ourselves to cases in which Matthews offered his own opinions or judgments.[1] We also excluded instances in which there was any ambiguity about whether the statement was positive or negative.
The results demonstrate that Matthews has been particularly friendly to Rudy Giuliani in recent months, and extremely hostile toward Hillary Clinton. Not only is there a qualitative difference between the kinds of praise and criticism he offers these two candidates, but a quantitative difference, as well: Matthews made 10 negative remarks about Clinton for every negative remark he made about Giuliani, and nearly three times as many positive remarks about the former New York City mayor as about Clinton. The ratio of positive to negative remarks was 3.5-to-1 for Giuliani, but 1-to-8.2 for Clinton.
Matthews made 10 positive remarks about Hillary Clinton in the past three months, most of which were evaluations of her campaign performance. But six of these 10 remarks also contained some criticism, as when he said, "She has been charming but cold and absolutely flawless," or when he described a debate as "a highly scripted, brilliant performance by Hillary Clinton." Others -- for instance, his praise of Clinton's success in getting support from "every interest area in the Democratic Party" -- could also plausibly be interpreted as backhanded compliments.
Matthews made 82 negative remarks about Clinton during this period. They cover a wide range of topics, but most have to do with character issues -- that Clinton is overly calculating, disingenuous, or unethical.
Matthews made 28 positive remarks about Rudy Giuliani, most concerning how much of a leader and how tough Giuliani is.
Matthews made eight negative remarks about Giuliani, most about his stance on immigration.
The complete list of positive and negative remarks is available at the end of this report.[2]
The picture painted by this list is clear. Indeed, the Philadelphia Inquirer magazine reported in June 2001 that Matthews told an MSNBC colleague, "I hate her. I hate her. All that she stands for."

A sampling of negative remarks about Clinton:
"Hillary Clinton did what she always does, what her husband always does is refuse to pay a price for political office. To always defer to someone; always avoid taking a position within any interest group that might offend some interest group within the Democratic Party. It seems the whole tactic of the Clintons, never take a stand that offends anybody in the whole room full of Democratic donors and then you get elected because you don't offend anybody." (September 26)
"Sometimes, I wonder, with the Clintons, do they really have that spontaneous ability to react to events, or is it just all script? That bothers me sometimes." (October 4)
"And Hillary's so lawyered up and consultanted-up. We don't know what they really think, do we?" (October 11)
"I think a lot of people pick a president they figure would sort of like them if they knew them. And if you are overweight or have a problem with your diet -- and I certainly did for years -- you may figure Hillary doesn't like people like me. She's looking down on me. What do you think? Howie, she's looking down on me, that woman. She thinks she's better than me." (October 19)
"But did she think up this malarkey about, I'm going stick with the -- doesn't she step back for three seconds and say she grew up in Chicago. You're always loyal to the team you grew up with as a kid. She went to the Yankees so that she could run for senator from New York. It's so obvious. Well, why is she -- doesn't she know she looks like a fraud?" (October 26)
"They have to nestle and pander, if you will. It seems like Hillary Clinton has made her bed. She's going to be for the side of the illegal immigrants. That's where she is." (October 31)
"I hear the sharp notes there coming out of her mouth. Is that bad for her? You know, like in piano music, the notes seem a half a note too sharp. And is that going to hurt?" (November 16)
A sampling of positive remarks about Giuliani:
"That's what I began hearing several years ago, that Southerners look to Giuliani as a leader. And Republicans, as we all know, love leaders. Watch for Rudy to surprise the pundits and pull pretty good numbers down in Dixie." (October 18)
"Rudy is this tough, kick-butt cop from New York. You know he is not a nice guy. You know he can be a SOB. But maybe that is what you want on the subway at 3:00 in the morning. Maybe that is what people feel like in their heads right now. It is 3:00 in the morning. And we want tough guy on that subway with us, right?" (November 6)
"Rudy Giuliani, after 9/11, the galloping horse of history came by. He jumped in the saddle and made himself Winston Churchill. You either grab your opportunity when it comes, or you blow it. This guy grabbed it. That is why I think he is the number one possibility to be the next Republican nominee for president." (November 6)
"I think reading this [Newsweek] article may give me a sense of why in fact he's got this tough persona that I think is part of the reason why he stayed at the top of the polls for all these many months, about a year or so already, coming -- coming out of the background that he did. No one say he came from a -- a very pampered, silver-spoon-in-his-mouth type background, as -- as other presidents have done. That may give a sense as to why he's got the kind of demeanor and the toughness that I think made him a success as mayor and I think will make him a success on this campaign trail." (November 26)
Negative remarks about Hillary Clinton (82
September 11
"The target of the Romney sleaze, Fred Thompson, was, of course, the senator assigned the job of probing all that honky-tonk fund-raising the -- the Clinton family did back when they held the White House, all those Lincoln Bedroom sleepovers for those who could pay the price in Clinton campaign contributions, all that Motel 6 use of the president's house. Well, here we go again. Hillary Clinton has just been caught with and has had to return $850,000 from a guy named Norman Hsu, now under investigation by the FBI."
September 13
"I mean, I have noticed her trying to do the pyramid play, the Betty and Veronica number, on this war issue for months now, saying, I want a residual military force over there. I don't want to talk to Ahmadinejad, all that kind of hawkish talk, to go along with the anti-war sentiments of her party."
September 19
"Talk about the Keating Five. Here's a meeting in Washington with a bunch of Congress people, including apparently Sheila Jackson Lee, who escaped the chance to be on the show tonight, all sitting around being introduced to a bunch of lobbyists, who are trying to sell security equipment to the federal government. It's a match making operation, a pimping operation. Hillary Clinton is the queen bee of it. Is this the future if she gets elected president?"
September 20
"And you've got this question of bundling. It's been reported in the paper today that people are being asked to kick in to campaigns and then being compensated by their bosses. They're Republicans being forced to kick in to Hillary Clinton's campaign. A lot of this sleaze is going on. It's not the new kind of post-Watergate politics we were promised."
September 20
"You're saying it forces them [the Clintons] to be corrupt? Excuse me, are we now in the business of justifying -- because their ambitions are so grand, we can't expect them to be careful in how they raise money? Excuse me, they choose to run for president. They believe they can handle the job without being corrupt. They say so. And when they are found to be corrupt, we say oh, that comes with the territory. Is that the excuse?"
September 20
"Is this corrupt, what Hillary Clinton is doing, holding fund-raisers with lobbyists, pimping them, basically, saying, if you give money to me, you lobbyists, I will sit you down to lunch with members of Congress, chairmen of committees, and they will sit around with you and you will get to be friends with each other, but give me the money first, and I will set up those deals, those lunches?"
September 26
"Hillary Clinton did what she always does, what her husband always does is refuse to pay a price for political office. To always defer to someone; always avoid taking a position within any interest group that might offend some interest group within the Democratic Party. It seems the whole tactic of the Clintons, never take a stand that offends anybody in the whole room full of Democratic donors and then you get elected because you don't offend anybody."
September 26
"But the Clintons always do this 'slip-sliding-away' thing. They beat Paul Tsongas with this back in '92, she's following the same playbook now. Don't take positions on anything that offends anyone and you can slip-slide your way into the nomination."
September 26
"What do you make of her commitment on Iraq to keep the troops in there so she can do the old Betty and Veronica play here, where I'm for pulling the troops out but I'm for keeping the troops in? It's like Archie, you know, Archie Andrews, I mean, she seems to say I'm coming home but I'm staying. You know, what is it? I feel like Jackie Mason here, she's in -- she's out. The question is do you think she has an authentic policy proposal or is your policy proposal for a federalization system over there where you share the oil revenues; you break up the land into different confessional groups. Is that the solution you believe in? Do you think she really believes you keep a certain number of troops there forever to fight Al Qaeda and you take the other ones home? I mean, does that make sense to you?"
September 26
"What about when she said, 'I know this is of special interest to you.' For whom is Social Security not a special interest? I mean that was the strangest kind of response to someone."
September 26
"I've got you figured out boy. Yeah right. I just thought that was outrageous. There's not a senior citizen in America that doesn't think that the future of Social Security is of ultimate relevance to them."
September 26
"It's how they destroyed Paul Tsongas back in '92. Let the other guy propose reforms, you talk reform but don't say anything, ever."
September 26
"Do you think that Hillary Clinton is trying to have it both ways in the war on Iraq by maintaining a combat troop presence to fight Al Qaeda, that's her phraseology, which avoids having to say I'm pulling the troops out. Is that a strategy to keep everyone happy with a policy that really does divide Americans?"
September 26
"I thought it was interesting, you couldn't get her to say raise taxes, change the benefits or change the amount of income taxed. That pretty much defines inaction, doesn't it?"
September 26
"Let me tell you how short Hillary's leash is. She was asked by you, sir, about whether we're going to get full disclosure of contributors to presidential libraries. And she did not feel that she had the latitude in her husband's absence to give you an answer. She said, you'll have to ask my husband, as if you're a guy going door to door trying to sell someone and says you'll have to wait for my husband to get home. It was unbelievable that she wouldn't answer that. Never mind, let's drop this. I just thought it was extraordinary that their deal doesn't have that much clarity to it."
September 26
"Yes. But she has always had that -- you know, you have dealt with her. You know if you have a town meeting with her, 10 minutes before the town meeting, one of the press people comes in and asks you the questions, what they're going to be. This is Hillary-land. You've go to live in that land. We all live in that land. She wants -- she doesn't want to have any risks. She wants to get the presidency without risk and that's not surprising if you're the frontrunner."
September 26
"But let me ask you about this about the issue tonight. Is Hillary Clinton vulnerable to the charge that she's been sloppy about taking money from Hsu, from dealing with this guy Follieri? Is she too loose when it comes to the people she hangs around with and lets her people hang around with? Is there a problem of corruption in the front-runner's campaign?"
September 26
"We've got the big presidential debate right now. And the question is, will sleaze stop Hillary Clinton?"
September 26
"What is it about the Clintons' world that is more connected with big money people, a lot of foreign people, a lot of people with particular interests and kind of seedy people, as opposed to Barack's campaign? Is it the fact that he gets small contributors, idealistic contributors, and they deal with the old interest people or what?"
September 26
"Let me ask you about the peculiar nature of the Clintons fund-raising operation. They are -- let's try to use the right word -- notorious for the wholesale manner in which they haul people in and shake them down for lots of money. This reached a head during the 1990s, when they were hauling people into the Lincoln Bedroom, letting people stay overnight in droves, one after another. They called it Motel 6. Senator Fred Thompson was the man who led the committee that investigated that. They couldn't prove anything to put the Clintons away. Is there something about the Clintons that's different than the usual sleazy fund-raising in politics?"
September 26
"But I do see this story building. It looks to me like the one big weakness of Hillary Clinton is not that she's a woman, not that she's not smart, not that she's not hard working, not that she's not experienced, not that she's too middle-of-the-road, but that she's too establishment. She's too much a part of the old way of doing things, and it's very hard to say she's the candidate of change."
September 26
"Jill, do you think the fact that Hillary is a woman, that she's married to Bill, and they have had the history of Motel 6 and raising money in the White House, the fact that she voted to authorize the war, adds up to a vulnerability?"
September 27
"Well, today Bill Clinton, as usual, tried to turn her dodging into a chivalry issue, something he's done so many times before. He's just looking out for his honey."
September 26
"She's still doing this, what I call, this Betty and Veronica pyramid play of saying I'll keep the hawks happy, I'll keep the doves happy, I'll keep some troops in forever to fight this Al Qaeda potential threat over there."
September 27
"Debra, what do you think looking at it from your side of things? Do you think Hillary Clinton has a notion, much less a vision, of what to do in Iraq?"
September 27
"Archie Andrews had in the comic books of Betty and Veronica. He wanted both of them. And that's what she wants, both arguments. She wants to be seen as a hawk and be seen as a dove for the purposes of this campaign."
September 28
"And here's Barack hitting Hillary Clinton for her bogus baseball fannery."
September 28
"More news today about the Clintons' strong-arming of that magazine 'Gentleman's Quarterly,' their killing of a Hillary story that they didn't like the look of. ... I don't know if the Clintons can keep getting away with this. It's kind of rough treatment, you might even say a little fascistic treatment, of the journalistic world."
October 1
"I got to tell you, I love Frank Rich, and I love him especially when he points out what seems to me to be the obvious, that Hillary Clinton is hedging, that she wants to have the hawks in the Democratic Party, the hawks in the general election, and the anti-war people in the Democratic Party all to like her, and it's starting to show, this hedging of her bets."
October 1
"And Hillary can't seem to decide, is she a hawk who wants to take on Iran, who supports the latest resolution from the neo-conservatives, is she the hawk who wants to keep troops in Iraq forever, or is she the one who wants to bring our boys home and end this war? She says both things all the time. What is she? Can you read her?"
October 1
"You said the other night, when we were talking at dinner, you said that people don't mind you taking any position except the fetal position. Is that what Hillary's doing? I don't know what it is. It's like the quarterback who falls down on the ball, rather than trying to advance it, because he knows he's winning the game. That's what she seems to be doing. Every time there's a play, she falls down on the ball so she won't, you know, fumble."
October 1
"I think the country wants to move the ball. They don't want somebody to keep control of the ball, like the Clintons do, hold the ball for the rest of their lives when what people want is it to move forward. They want to get out of Iraq. They want to avoid going into Iran. They want to have the economy better off and more secure. And here's a woman who's playing it safe and hedging her bets."
October 1
"Well, she doesn't want to lose it. But it's not -- OK, that's playing for her, it's not playing for us."
October 1
"I know, but Drew, I'm hoping it's real because I really liked the cackle when she did it to Chris and -- because I love to be rivals with everybody. But I've also heard that she cackled when she was talking to Bob Schieffer, which made no sense. I can't figure her out. Is the cackle killing her? You think it's a distraction. What is it?"
October 1
"If she keeps cackling, we'll keep talking about it. So I don't think she can win this baby! I don't know what to say."
October 1
"But the first African-American guy to really have a shot, that the voice of the future, no more Clinton versus -- Clinton and Bush rotating the job of the presidency like rotating old cans on a shelf in a supermarket, dusting off the cans because nobody is buying them."
October 2
"I still am in wonder of how Hillary Clinton can keep saying she didn't vote for the war."
October 3
"They used to say back in the old days at the Dewey campaign in '48 that he had a brilliant communications operation on his train as it whistle-stopped through the country, but it said nothing. Let me ask you about Hillary Clinton. She went on the Sunday talk shows, all five of them, made no news in five appearances. It was a tour de force, if her goal is to say nothing."
October 3
"All I know is this: I think we need a national health care system and the Democrats say they're for one. But when it comes time to create one, they don't even have the guts to finance it. If we're going to have a 200 billion dollar health care program, like Hillary and the others are talking about, you have to be willing to finance it. If all they're going to do is a number of saying, someday I'll raise the cigarette tax, that's not exactly a profile in courage, Rachel. Either you're going to pay for this stuff or stop talking about it. Hillary and Barack and Edwards are all talking about national health care. And all they can think of is some cigarette tax they know they will never pass. Why don't they put up their money where their mouth is, and say, we're for national health? And damn it, we're going to pay for it. We're going to cut something here. We're going to raise taxes here. It's going to add up. Why don't they say that?"
October 3
"But, Emily, how can she get away with leading a party by 33 points that's so totally against this war? We had the number on last night, four out of five Democrats want the Congress to be much tougher in taking on this war policy. And yet, Hillary doing that sort of interesting back and forth play she does on the war, where she's hawkish, in terms of Iran, hawkish in terms of keeping troops in Iraq. Yet says the right things most of the time about ending the war. How can she get away with that pyramid play in a party that's so overwhelmingly anti-war?"
October 4
"Sometimes, I wonder, with the Clintons, do they really have that
spontaneous ability to react to events, or is it just all script? That bothers me sometimes."
October 8
"I've been saying a long time anecdotally, because I love to do these things, that anybody with a gun and a boat, Hillary hasn't got their vote. And I'm trying to be like Jesse Jackson here with little rhyming here. But that guy, that independent working guy, he's hard to get for a liberal Democrat, isn't he?"
October 11
"And Hillary's so lawyered up and consultanted-up. We don't know what they really think, do we?"
October 18
"What about when she does this sort of awkward, I think, or highly rehearsed, Us girls have to get together and circle the wagons against those men? Is that attractive to women voters or not?"
October 19
" 'The Los Angeles Times' reports today that Hillary has raised unprecedented amounts of money from poor Chinatown residents -- quote -- 'Dishwashers, waiters and others whose jobs and dilapidated home addresses seem to make them unpromising targets for political fund-raisers are pouring $1,000 and $2,000 contributions into Clinton's campaign treasury' -- quote. The report goes on to say that many of the donors, some of whom don't even vote, felt pressured to give because leaders in neighborhood associations told them to. Well, while she shovels in money in one door, she shovels out the federal money in another. Republicans in Congress have just succeeded in killing an earmark proposed by Senator Clinton and New York's Chuck Schumer. It would have provided $1 million for a Woodstock museum in Upstate New York."
October 19
"I think a lot of people pick a president they figure would sort of like them if they knew them. And if you are overweight or have a problem with your diet -- and I certainly did for years -- you may figure Hillary doesn't like people like me. She's looking down on me. What do you think? Howie, she's looking down on me, that woman. She thinks she's better than me."
October 22
"That's right, the same thing she said about her vote authorizing the war with Iraq. Hillary wants hawks in the party to think she's the most hawkish of Democrats and still make the cut with the doves. Talk about a wide stance."
October 23
"Julie, I think they're going to skunk Hillary the way they did Dukakis back in 1988. They're going to say, we want change but not this one, baby."
October 26
"But did she think up this malarkey about, I'm going stick with the -- doesn't she step back for three seconds and say she grew up in Chicago. You're always loyal to the team you grew up with as a kid. She went to the Yankees so that she could run for senator from New York. It's so obvious. Well, why is she -- doesn't she know she looks like a fraud?"
October 26
"What's with her clapping? Why is she always clapping? There we see her -- I don't know any -- is this a Chinese thing? What is this clapping? She doesn't clap like you do at a movie you like or something. She claps when she meets people. She claps -- is that Tom Friedman? I mean, she claps when she stands at a luncheon. What is all the clapping about?"
October 26
"Does she exploit it and get power by knowing that he's always feeling guilty with her? In other words, did she get power -- I heard this from David Gergen. She got power over health care financing, the biggest issue of that administration ... because he was so hooked up in the problem of Paula Jones that she just squeezed it out of -- OK, give me the health care thing, and I'll be quiet."
October 26
"Is that the kind of exploitation, or what do you call it -- what do you call it, blackmail? What do you call it?"
October 26
"And she exploited it to get more power."
October 26
"It was a fund-raiser, of course. Like so much of the Clintons' life, they use it for fund-raising purposes or political purposes."
October 26
"I find them both amazingly likable people when I'm with them, especially Hillary. I do find a fraudulence, a public fraudulence, in all this Yankee/Red Sox stuff. It's so hokey, so baloney, so B.S. It makes me wonder about how much more B.S. there is. When you can actually pretend it's an issue that somebody roots for the Sox, when your team loses the division, I mean, who cares?"
October 26
"It was the worst of both worlds, Sally. It was the fingers on the blackboard and a stupid topic."
October 26
"How do we discern how they work together in the White House, because there's this problem you're pointing to of trying to get the record out. Explain the problem of getting the record out about how Bill and Hillary operated for eight years in the White House."
October 26
"When you want to find out about something, they [the Clintons] say, oh, that's politics. You can't look at it. If it's something to do with policy, they say that's policy. By the way, who's in charge?"
October 29
"Here's what I think Obama should say starting tomorrow night at the big MSNBC debate in my hometown of Philly. Quote, 'This country's in a rut, a rut that leads to endless war in Iraq, that leads to inevitable war with Iran. The American people, and not just the Democrats, want to get our country out of this rut. The great majority of them want this election to take us to a new place, not just led by someone smarter along the same rut. I promise to take us to that new place. Senator Clinton is smart. She's hardworking. She's serious. But every vote she has cast, every word she has spoken says yes to the status quo. She voted to approve the war with Iraq. She just voted with the hawks to target Iran. She always seems to choose the safe boat that leaves this country in the same rut, the rut of fearful politics and endless war. I promise change. I promise a new approach. I promise deliverance from the rut of endless war in Iraq, inevitable war in Iran. So there you have it. It's for you, my fellow Democrats, to decide. If you think Bush's policies would have been succeed if they were better executed, then go with Senator Clinton. If you think the Bush policies were wrong, dead wrong, I'm with you.' "
October 29
"I mean, I made the point early in the show, as I started the show, I think he has to say that Hillary Clinton keeps us in the rut we're in right now. She offers no change, more war with Iraq, inevitable war with Iran. You need a whole new approach to the foreign policy of this country, and she's not offering it."
October 29
"But Hillary is basically column A. She's a smarter Bush."
October 29
"By the way, that might be the smartest politics, because having just been at Fenway Park and heard some of the rumbling behind me about Hillary; 'Is she really going to be the nominee? Tell me she's not going to be the nominee. Tell me I don't have her as president.' That was what I was hearing behind me."
October 29
"She's very much the establishment candidate. She's doing the establishment thing, taking money from the interest groups, whatever they are, saying she really doesn't pay much attention where the money comes from. That's Bill Clinton politics. That's what they did in the White House. Is it going to work?"
October 30
"Dan, it seems to me that she has managed to keep the voice tenor down. There has been none of that fingernail on the blackboard kind of hectoring sound."
October 31
"Roger, it seems to me that she uses this phrase, 'undocumented workers,' rather than illegal immigrants. It's obviously pandering. It doesn't tell you anything. 'Undocumented worker' can mean anything. She doesn't use the actual language of reality. These people are in the country illegally. And then she seeks to solve the problem by giving them documents, as that -- as if that's their only problem. They're in the country illegally. She wants to give them driver's licenses. By the way, she finally went full circle again today and said, Yes, give them driver's licenses."
October 31
"You know, last night, Anne, I thought Hillary Clinton was playing a pretty good game of eightball in pool, and then she scratched at the end. She was the one that put the cueball in the hole, in the pocket. She committed the self-inflicted wound of coming out for driver's licenses, documentation for people in this country illegally. I don't know how she wins on this. "
October 31
"I think she's ready to switch again, Pat. We'll be right back. I swear she switches on this like a top in the next couple of months."
October 31
"The hottest issue in the Democratic Party is the war. The hottest issue in the Republican Party is illegal immigration. And now Hillary has sided with illegal immigration."
October 31
"What is this, Pat? Dodgeball? That's not a position for the first lady?"
October 31
"I mean, her husband is the guy she is using as her number-one trolley to the White House here, and she can't give him a call and say, hey, dear, why don't you release those documents, so I can brag about my record at the White House?"
October 31
"Do you think she is hiding something? Do you think she's hiding something, that she did something during the administration of her husband that is embarrassing to her, and that's why she doesn't want the papers out?"
October 31
"They have to nestle and pander, if you will. It seems like Hillary Clinton has made her bed. She's going to be for the side of the illegal immigrants. That's where she is."
November 1
"First she mocks the debate, now she's playing the woman card. Will either move pay off for Hillary Clinton after her flip-flop on this issue we're talking about, driver's licenses for people in the country illegally?"
November 1
"I was just triggered into thinking about the number of times Hillary Clinton has yielded herself to this gender card; I'm your girl out in Chicago. What gives me experience in dealing with evil men, and now this one, rallying the troops up at Wellesley. Is she going to do a seven sisters tour now, a college tour now with Hillary to rally the women against the men?"
November 1
"Is this pandering or playing to the Seven Sisters crowd up at these all-women's colleges, where there may be that sort of mood if you're -- and they all want dates. I assume a lot of them do, on weekends. But this anti-male thing, is that something that's particularly something you can sort of spruce up, you can play up, up there?"
November 2
"Is Hillary out of line for painting herself as a victimized woman every time her male rivals criticize her? And do we want a president who plays the gender card every time her opponents attack her?"
November 6
"Hillary Clinton's team, led by very smart people, the best and the brightest in the business, people like Mark Penn and Mandy Grunwald, they're putting out the word -- first of all, they put out the word to Drudge that night that somehow Tim Russert was too tough. Then they put out the word the next day at a fund raising meeting, in a conference call, that the other rivals were too tough. Then she dropped the Wellesley -- maybe she did it rightly or wrongly, but she did do the gender card thing. And now they're putting out the fact, Bill, that they're Swift Boating this poor woman. You know, just a month ago, she's I'm your girl. In Chicago, she was tough. I can take on all these bad guys. Now, what's big brother coming to defend her for? What's all this excuse-making?"
November 6
"No, I think it's [clapping] bizarre behavior. Anyway, I think it has something to do with -- men don't know what to do with their hands. I guess she's like us. Anyway, we'll be right back with more of the round table. I want an answer, why is she clapping. Matt, please. Tell me. Why does she clap all the time?"
November 9
"Hillary Clinton has this number I just looked at the other day, we all saw it. Fifty five percent of married men in the country say they'll never vote for her under any circumstances. Doesn't she walk into the White House really a pariah amongst so many people?"
November 13
"Who's afraid of the big bad wolf? First the Clinton people blamed the moderator in that Philadelphia debate for Hillary's bad night. Then they confessed to feeding questions in televised town meetings. Now they're trying to intimidate the next debate moderator. Is everyone fair game except the candidate?"
November 13
"This shows that she's a manipulative candidate."
November 16
"I hear the sharp notes there coming out of her mouth. Is that bad for her? You know, like in piano music, the notes seem a half a note too sharp. And is that going to hurt?"Positive remarks about Hillary Clinton (10)
October 1*
"Hey, Mike, Drew, I'm warming up towards her, despite how hard I get on this show, because it's my job to play hardball and be tough on all these guys. But I do think she's so much more appealing as a political figure, after all these years of putting up with Bill."
October 4*
"Well, Hillary -- and this will sound negative towards Hillary, but, you know, I have come to like her a lot more over the years. I just respect how far she's come. I think putting up with Bill has been her rite of passage, putting up with that marriage, and coming out pretty whole, at least the way we look at it. And I think that's a fair estimate. It's not the nicest estimate. But she's a tough cookie. And I think he made her tougher, not necessarily by being nice. But she's a tougher woman than she was 20, 30 years ago, I'm sure."
October 5
"She's much cuter. Cut her some slack, will you? You are brutal."
October 8
"Let's come back and talk about Hillary, who's just leaped to the front of Iowa. She could run the table if she keeps it up. It will confound some people. She's definitely running an impressive campaign."
October 25*
"The establishment, the interest groups, the older women, the working women, the minorities, minorities -- I don't know if gays -- if they're significant, but they're probably for Hillary too. It's unbelievable."
October 29*
"But how do you bring about that choice with Hillary? Hillary is out there with these incredible numbers. Women seem to be voting for her in large numbers. Minorities are voting for her, poor people, working people and old people. She seems to have corralled every interest area of the Democratic Party right now."
October 30*
"The calm, cool presence of a Grace Kelly, if you will. It is almost -- that is the way that Hillary has been. She has been charming but cold and absolutely flawless, I agree."
November 8
"As her friends and foes must have noticed, I get a kick out of going after Hillary's fondness for public clapping. She does it everywhere. Every time she gets in front of a crowd of supporters, she keeps clapping and clapping and clapping. Well, I was up at my old high school the other night, La Salle in Philly, last night. And I talked to Agnes Hallis (ph), who is married to John Hallis (ph), who used to play French horn with me in the school band. She gave me four -- make that a full quartet of reasons why Hillary likes to clap. I love these reasons. Number one, it's a polite way to show she appreciates the applause from the people around her. She's responding. Number two, it's a way to jazz up the energy in the room, sort of like being a cheerleader of the crowd. She's sort of cheering them up, getting them going. Three -- I love these last two -- it's like Peter Pan. If you clap, Tinker Bell will get better. Four, that's that old kid's song. If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. Anyway, so, don't let my Scrooge attitude about clapping make you think anything less of this or take away any reasons why a person running for commander in chief shouldn't enjoy this campaign any way she chooses."
November 16*
"You know what I saw, David, there? A highly scripted, brilliant performance by Hillary Clinton that hit all three bells."
November 30
"Well done. You know, that's what people like to see in politicians. It seems to me, regardless of political parties or attitudes about the person, to get out there on the curb, as she is right there in front of her house answering questions, right away, speaking to the public in a transparent fashion, no hiding in the back. People love it. I hope we see more of that from politicians in the future. It's good stuff. I also like the fact she thanked her volunteers and those of every other campaign, young people in their 20s who run American politics because they have the time to go out there and volunteer. I hope they still do."
* These remarks were positive overall but also contained some negative element.
Positive remarks about Rudy Giuliani (28)
September 4
"Word is that he [John McCain] might be inclined to throw his backing to Rudy Giuliani. The beauty of that is, it would whack Romney, smash his erstwhile buddy, Thompson, who wasn't supposed to run as long as John McCain was in the race, and give a real lift to a fellow maverick. Lots of grit in those two, Rudy and McCain."
September 12
"Were you impressed that 92 percent of the people, almost everybody, thinks he was totally within his rights to celebrate 9/11, and be a main celebrant of it, that he owns that horror? He was there."
September 14
"There's another piece to it [Giuliani's popularity] that you haven't mentioned. I think they like -- people on the conservative side tend to like strong leaders."
October 3
"Rudy's opportunity to pick up on the Bush vote is clearly in the east, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, maybe Ohio. Pick up some opportunity there. They already have Ohio. Pick up some eastern, more ethnic cities, where people like gritty people like Rudy."
October 8
"Rudy's got a gritty image."
October 8
"OK. Let's put a picture up here, a gritty, big-city guy, with a long ethnic name from New York, tough on crime, great during 9/11, Giuliani, right?"
October 9
"That is so smart [that Giuliani listens to his opponents and responds to them]."
October 10
"Well, I think Rudy is right [that he is the most electable -- the "50-state" candidate]."
October 11
"You're with me on that one [that Giuliani will be very tough]. That's what I think."
October 11
"Everything you say is true about Rudy Giuliani. I have been saying that for two years. Whatever your position, liberal, middle, or left, or right, Giuliani has beat the spread week after week after week. And, if you just watch this business, the Republican Party seems to want strength more than anything else. And, for whatever reason, good, bad or fictitious, or whatever, he exudes it."
October 18
"That's what I began hearing several years ago, that Southerners look to Giuliani as a leader. And Republicans, as we all know, love leaders. Watch for Rudy to surprise the pundits and pull pretty good numbers down in Dixie."
October 19
"I'll tell you, Rudy Giuliani wants to bring Ron Paul into every debate for the rest of his life, because he does this alley-oop play. Every time Ron Paul gives the Libertarian, anti-neo-conservative argument, Rudy says what about 9/11 and gets the home run again."
October 22
"He's [Rudy Giuliani] not competing to be the most conservative, he's competing to be the leader."
October 22
"I have a sense that the coasts are going to be owned by Rudy Giuliani just because of the unit rule and the way he can roll it up in Florida and New Jersey and California."
October 23
"OK, I still bet on Giuliani to be the toughest competitor of Hillary."
October 24
"Well, it [Giuliani's claim to be supporting the Red Sox in the World Series] sounds reasonable to me. Is he supposed to be voting for the team from the other league?"
October 30
"Rudy Giuliani enjoys that same kind of popularity in the suburbs, because people want to go back to the old neighborhood. They want to be able to walk around it without getting hurt. They love it. They love their cities. That's why Rudy is popular."
November 6
"Tonight the person with the best shot to win the Republican nomination, I say it's Rudy Giuliani. Once again it is based on national and key state polling, international betting odds and perhaps the most important point, his best and most distinguishing strengths."
November 6
"What is his power punch? The way I see it, Republicans like leaders, as I said, he can win big in big states. And the Christian right now sees anti-terrorism, for which he is famous, as a moral virtue. What could stop him? His positions on social issues like abortion rights and gay rights. Early losses, really bad ones, could kill his big state bid before it even gets started. And finally, some Gotham blowback from firefighters, widows, police, anyone who tries to poke holes in his 9/11 legacy, that could be a problem."
November 6
"You know why I have been saying this guy looks good for a long time, he looks like a potential winner? Because I have been talking to a lot of people in the South, guys that go to lunches in the South, not necessarily church-y people, just secular Republicans, they hear about lower taxes, law and order, they like him. They can't spell his name down there, some people, but they love the idea he is a tough, kick-butt policeman, basically, in New York, a prosecutor, a guy who puts bad guys like Milken away."
November 6
"Rudy is this tough, kick-butt cop from New York. You know he is not a nice guy. You know he can be a SOB. But maybe that is what you want on the subway at 3:00 in the morning. Maybe that is what people feel like in their heads right now. It is 3:00 in the morning. And we want tough guy on that subway with us, right?"
November 6
"Rudy Giuliani, after 9/11, the galloping horse of history came by. He jumped in the saddle and made himself Winston Churchill. You either grab your opportunity when it comes, or you blow it. This guy grabbed it. That is why I think he is the number one possibility to be the next Republican nominee for president."
November 6
"Well, he's [Giuliani] the leader in that party. He looks more like a leader than the rest of them. "
November 20
"Well, that's Rudy at his best [making fun of Barack Obama's admission of past drug use]."
November 26
"So the people looking for a tough guy leader are going to Rudy. They know who they like, in a time of crime fear and terrorism fear, that makes sense."
November 26
"I think reading this [Newsweek] article may give me a sense of why in fact he's got this tough persona that I think is part of the reason why he stayed at the top of the polls for all these many months, about a year or so already, coming -- coming out of the background that he did. No one say he came from a -- a very pampered, silver-spoon-in-his-mouth type background, as -- as other presidents have done. That may give a sense as to why he's got the kind of demeanor and the toughness that I think made him a success as mayor and I think will make him a success on this campaign trail."
November 26
"The Italian-Americans [references a Giuliani profile in Newsweek] are the people that rub the graffiti off the walls when somebody puts it on the wall. They're the ones that won't move out of the neighborhood when it changes. They're the ones that really do fight for the city. They try to keep it straight and narrow. They are straight-and-narrow people. It seems to me it's a plus."
November 28
"I have to tell you, when I watched it [a debate], I thought every -- those two guys were operating at a different level than the rest of the guys, the rest of the candidates, that those two guys, Rudy and Romney, were so far ahead, they were like -- they were like the top-ranked football teams."
Negative remarks about Rudy Giuliani (8)
September 13
"Rudy Giuliani gets whacked on immigration, and maybe deserves it."
September 13
"Republican candidates for president are still pouncing on Rudy Giuliani for remarks he made on talk radio about illegal immigration. He said that being in the United States illegally should not be a federal crime -- quote -- 'because the government wouldn't be able to prosecute it. We couldn't prosecute 12 million people' -- close quote. Well, his position puts him clearly at odds with top supporters like Peter King of New York, who want the law enforced. Well, excuse me, but how can a law and order conservative like Giuliani think it's OK for the first thing a person does on entering this country to break the law? In the new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, by the way, Giuliani has seen his lead over Fred Thompson shrink from 13 points down just to six points. It will keep shrinking if he keeps sounding soft on illegal immigration."
September 13
"Rudy Giuliani sounds soft on illegal immigration. What's he up to?"
September 24
"Call me old-fashioned, but, when you invite people to go to the trouble to come to an event and listen to what you have to say, you give your first attention to them. You don't operate a switchboard of anyone who feels like interrupting you [referring to Giuliani's answering of a cell phone call during a campaign speech]. If this thing happens again, and people aren't openly offended by it, that's their fault. Cute once, maybe, not cute twice, not cool, if it happens again."
October 1
"Rudy Giuliani explains why he keeps interrupting speeches to take his wife's telephone calls. And wouldn't you know it, it has to do with 9/11."
November 6
"Big problem, small problem, his [Rudy Giuliani] inability to answer that quickly? He was mocking Hillary for having a problem with a question. Brian asked him a fairly obvious question, he took the longest time to say how long he hasn't talked to the guy [Kerik]."
November 26
"Which of these two top Republicans [Romney and Giuliani] is least likely to give you an extension [on a loan]? I don't see a whole lot of heart from either of these guys."
November 29
"You know what I liked about last night, gentlemen, was that there was one issue that neither of these heavyweights, Rudy Giuliani or -- or Governor Mitt Romney, had prepared themselves for in this campaign. They had adjusted their positions on abortion, on gun control, on a whole array of issues to make themselves acceptable to the arch-conservatives, but they hadn't adjusted their records on immigration, illegal immigration. They were both caught flat-footed last night. And you saw that great battle between them, knowing each other was vulnerable. They were both vulnerable on the issue, because neither one has been a red-hot on this issue."
[1] We did not count the plentiful instances in which Matthews criticized Bill Clinton unless he also explicitly criticized Hillary Clinton, despite the fact that criticism of the former is obviously no help to the latter.
[2] We considered each remark to begin when Matthews began speaking and to end when a guest began speaking. Consequently, there were a few occasions on which Matthews made multiple negative or positive remarks regarding the same topic during a single conversation.
—Media Matters staff

Monday, December 17, 2007


Community Health Systems, Inc. through its subsidiaries, owns, leases and operates acute care hospitals that are the principal providers of primary healthcare services in non-urban communities. As of December 31, 2006, the Company owned, leased or operated 77 hospitals, across 22 states, with an aggregate of approximately 9,117 licensed beds. On February 1, 2007, the Company executed a definitive agreement to acquire the 159-bed, Lincoln General Hospital, located in Ruston, Louisiana. Effective November 1, 2006, the Company acquired Campbell County Hospital, a 99-bed facility located in Weatherford, Texas. In addition, effective November 1, 2006, the Company acquired Union County Hospital, a 25-bed facility located in Anna, Illinois. Effective October 1, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of HelpSource Home Health, a home health agency located in Wichita Falls, Texas. Effective September 1, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of Humble Texas Home Care, a home health agency located in Humble, Texas. Effective March 18, 2006, the Company sold Highland Medical Center, a 123-bed facility located in Lubbock, Texas, to Shiloh Health Services, Inc. of Louisville, Kentucky. In July 2007, Community Health Systems, Inc. merged with Triad Hospitals, Inc., pursuant to which Triad become a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company.
Effective March 1, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of Forrest City Hospital, a 118-bed hospital and related assets located in Forrest City, Arkansas. Effective April 1, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of two hospitals from the Baptist Health System, Birmingham, Alabama: Baptist Medical Center, DeKalb (134 beds) and Baptist Medical Center, Cherokee (60 beds). Effective May 1, 2006, the Company completed its acquisition of Via Christi Oklahoma Regional Medical Center, a 140-bed hospital located in Ponca City, Oklahoma. Effective June 1, 2006, the Company completed its acquisition of Mineral Area Regional Medical Center, a 135-bed hospital located in Farmington, Missouri. Effective June 30, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of Cottage Home Options, a home health agency and related businesses, located in Galesburg, Illinois, in which it previously held a 40% ownership interest. Effective July 1, 2006, the Company completed the acquisition of the healthcare assets of Vista Health, which included Victory Memorial Hospital (336 beds) and St. Therese Medical Center (71 non-acute care beds), both located in Waukegan, Illinois. The Company generates revenues by providing a range of general hospital healthcare services to patients in the communities, in which it is located. Services provided by the Company's hospitals include emergency room services, general surgery, critical care, internal medicine, obstetrics and diagnostic services. As part of providing these services the Company also owns, outright or through partnerships with physicians, physician practices, imaging centers, home health agencies and ambulatory surgery centers
FRANKLIN, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 27, 2007--Community Health Systems, Inc. (NYSE: CYH) today announced the execution of a definitive agreement to sell nine hospitals to Capella Healthcare, Inc., a privately held, for-profit hospital company headquartered in Franklin, Tennessee. The aggregate purchase price for the transaction, which is structured as a sale of stock, is $315 million. The transaction is subject to the typical closing contingencies for a transaction of this size, and is expected to close on January 31, 2008. The following facilities are included in the transaction:
Note: The facilities in the transaction are a mix of Triad acquisition facilities and existing Company facilities.

Licensed Facility Name Location #Beds
------------------------------------------ ---------------- --------
Hartselle Medical Center Hartselle, AL 150
Jacksonville Medical Center Jacksonville, AL 89
Parkway Medical Center Decatur, AL 108
Woodland Medical Center Cullman, AL 100
National Park Medical Center Hot Springs, AR 156
St. Mary's Regional Medical Center Russellville, AR 170
Mineral Area Regional Medical Center Farmington, MO 135
White County Medical Center Sparta, TN 60
Willamette Valley Medical Center McMinnville, OR 80

Located in the Nashville, Tennessee, suburb of Franklin, Community Health Systems, Inc. is the largest publicly-traded hospital company in the United States and a leading operator of general acute care hospitals in non-urban and mid-size markets throughout the country. Through its subsidiaries, the Company currently owns, leases or operates approximately 127 hospitals in 28 states and one in the Republic of Ireland, with an aggregate of approximately 19,100 licensed beds. Its hospitals offer a broad range of inpatient medical and surgical services, outpatient treatment and skilled nursing care. In addition, through its QHR subsidiary, the Company provides management and consulting services to independent general acute care hospitals located throughout the United States. Shares in Community Health Systems, Inc. are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "CYH." (QHR...Quorum)

WSJ: Community Health to buy Triad

Community Health to buy Triad

Email Print By E. Thomas Wood
03-19-2007 6:07 AM —
UPDATE -- After a morning of speculation sparked by The Wall Street Journal, Triad Hospitals announced today that it has agreed to be acquired by Community Health Systems in a $6.8 billion deal.Under the terms of the deal, Triad stockholders will receive $54 cash for each of their shares, putting the cash value of the deal at roughly $5.1 billion. Additionally, Community Health Systems will also assume $1.7 billion of the company's outstanding debt.Following the official announcement, Community Health's stock fell by nearly 9 percent to $33.56. Shares have since rallied somewhat, changing hands for $35.43 as of noon.
As originally reported:
At a speak-now-or-forever-hold-your-peace moment, Community Health Systems has piped up from the congregation.
The nation's largest operator of rural hospitals, based in Cool Springs, has interrupted a $4.5 billion private equity buyout with a better offer for Plano, Texas-based Triad Hospitals, according to an overnight report by The Wall Street Journal.
The Journal says Community Health's price is well above the original offer, so much so that it is "too much to bear" for CCMP Capital Advisors LLC and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, which had teamed up to buy Triad in a deal announced last month. The report quotes an unnamed source on the inside as saying the private equity partners would walk away from their deal.
Even if the WSJ report is accurate, of course, the Community Health bid could still collapse as the parties work out final details. Neither of the companies would comment to the newspaper.
The transaction announced in February, unlike most recent PE takeouts of publicly traded companies, included a "go-shop" provision that left open the realistic possibility of a competing offer. And the breakup fee payable to CCMP and Goldman, $20 million, is smaller than the punitive amounts attached to many recent deals.
Though Triad is based in Texas, it has substantial local connections. Formed as a spinoff from hospital giant HCA in 1999, it bought locally based hospital operator and manager Quorum Health Group Inc. in 2001. Its board of directors includes former Tennessee Commissioner of Human Services Nancy Ann Min DeParle.
Community Health's purchase, if consummated, will put it in a position either to enter new lines of business or to spin off portions of Triad. In addition to operating 51 hospitals in 16 states, primarily in the Midwest and West, Triad also has ten ambulatory surgery centers. And its QHR subsidiary, formed from the outsourced hospital management business of Quorum, provides management-related services to some 200 hospital clients nationwide.
Community Health already has the second largest number of hospitals of any national chain with 77 facilities in 22 states, behind HCA's 182 hospitals globally. The addition of the Triad facilities ought to allow the company, which has grown rapidly in recent years by buying small numbers of hospitals at a time, to achieve large economies of scale by consolidating management and purchasing functions.

Community Health buys Triad, creating U.S. leader

Maybe we should dig a bit deeper and find out who TRIAD really is?

March 19, 2007

In a deal which should create the nation's largest publicly-traded hospital operator, Community Health Systems has agreed to buy Triad Hospitals for about $6.8 billion, including $5.1 billion upfront and the assumption of $1.7 billion in debt. HCA used to be the nation's top publicly-held hospital firm, but it was taken private in a $33 billion leveraged buyout last year. In agreeing to the Community Health acquisition, Triad paid out a $20 million termination fee to CCMP Capital and GS Capital, since the agreement canceled an existing buyout deal.
When finalized, the acquisition will create a $9.9 billion company with 130 hospitals in 28 states, including Community Health's 77 existing hospitals. Community Health is financing the buyout with $10.3 billion in debt financing. Once they begin working together, the companies expect to achieve operating efficiencies of $40 million to $50 million, according to Community Health CFO Larry Cash.

TRIAD ACQUISITION.....JULY 2007 ...Really?

Community Health Systems (CHS) has disclosed in securities filings that the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating three of its hospitals on charges that the New Mexico facilities caused the state to submit false federal claims. The DoJ is attempting to determine whether the facilities submitted inappropriate claims with the state's program for reimbursing hospitals for indigent care, CHS says. The current actions by the DoJ expand on an ongoing civil investigation, touching on CHS hospitals in Arkansas and South Carolina, which first kicked off in February 2006. CHS, which acquired Triad Hospitals in July for $6.97 billion, also reported net income of $10.5 million on revenue of $2.35 billion, up from $8.2 million net income on revenue of $1.12 billion in the same quarter last year.

TX, NJ hospitals settle Medicare allegations.....geez they settled

Hospitals in Texas and New Jersey agreed this week to pay almost $10 million to settle charges of making improper Medicare claims. One facility, Warren Hospital of Philipsburg, N.J., agreed to pay $7.5 million to settle charges that it had inflated Medicare charges to boost its outlier payments. The hospital will enter a corporate integrity agreement with the HHS Inspector General's Office. Meanwhile, Harris Methodist-HEB Hospital in Bedford, TX agreed to pay $1.9 million to address questions over a lease agreement with the physician. The parent company for the hospital, which reported the potential problem, will be required to submit periodic compliance reports. Both of these cases arose from whistle-blower lawsuits.

ALSO NOTED: HCA closes Cedars deal; AMA endorses health IT tax credits; and much more...

HCA has closed its sale of Miami-based Cedars Medical Center to the University of Miami for $260 million. Article> The AMA has endorsed the notion of giving physicians a tax credit for adopting health information technology. FierceHealthIT> This should be good news for EMR evangelists: According to a new study, consumers now believe that EMR benefits outweigh potential privacy threats imposed by the technology. FierceHealthIT> A vendor of on-demand digital publishing solutions and a software house are donating two mammography systems to hospitals, clinics or imaging centers which perform digital mammograms. Article

group of Houston-area hospitals were stuck with nearly $14 million in unpaid service fees in the late 1990s when North American Medical Management of

Another excuse.......for our FAILED HEALTH CARE !!!!!

A group of Texas hospitals frustrated by the collapse of their billing contractor have gotten permission to pursue their claims against the Aetna in state court. Hospitals involved include Christus Health Gulf Coast, Christus Health Southeast, HCA Gulf Coast Division, Memorial Hermann Hospital System and Baptist Hospital of Southeast Texas.The group of Houston-area hospitals were stuck with nearly $14 million in unpaid service fees in the late 1990s when North American Medical Management of Texas (NAMM) fell apart financially. The hospitals first sued NAMM, but when the NAMM was placed in conservatorship by the state Department of Insurance, the hospitals turned to Aetna, which it claimed was ultimately responsible for the fees under Texas law.
Originally, the hospitals pursued the claim in state court, but the case was thrown out and sent to federal court, on the logic that the case was governed by the federal Medicare Act. That wasn't great for the hospitals, because it meant that the hospitals would have to pursue 6,000 individual claims through a federal administrative process. Now, however, the Texas Supreme Court has said that the hospitals can go back to state court.To learn more about the case:- read this Modern Healthcare article

Antitrust case highlights tensions over MD-owned hospitals

For all those agaisnt SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE IN THIS COUNTRY.........

An Overland Park, KS-based physician-owned specialty hospital is moving ahead with a federal antitrust suit against a group of area health systems, claiming that the systems conspired with managed care plans to drive the specialty hospital out of business. Heartland Spine & Specialty Hospital contends that among other things, area health systems jointly asked local managed care companies not to include it in their networks--and went so far as to give the managed care companies reimbursement cuts when they agreed.Heartland Spine & Specialty Hospital named several large area providers as defendants in the suit, including HCA Midwest, St. Luke's Health System and North Kansas City Hospital. It's also targeted several insurers in its suit, including United Healthcare, Humana Health Plan, Cigna Health Care, Aetna and Coventry Health Care of Kansas. North Kansas City, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, Cigna, Humana and United have already settled with Heartland, but the case against the rest is going to trial in April.I for one am eager to hear how this comes out. With the battle on between traditionally-structured hospitals and physician-owned hospitals across the U.S., the ruling could have much bigger implications than addressing Heartland's grievances. To learn more about the case:- read this piece from The Kansas City Star

HCA to pay $20M to settle shareholder suits

Geez.........really.........I am sure they will settle this for 2005
But what about all the years prior, all the way back to 1968 FOLKS!!

Daily News For Healthcare Executives
August 16, 2007

HCA has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a group of shareholder suits that accused the company of making misleading statements in early January 2005. The suits contended the execs spoke highly of their prospects in January, but released bad news in July 2005, selling almost 1 million shares of stock in the interval. (If true, that certainly does raise some questions.) After the lawsuits were filed, the SEC and the U.S. attorney in New York filed subpoenas to HCA and former Senator Bill Frist to determine whether insider trading took place. However, neither agency filed charges. Nonetheless, HCA settled on the civil suit, keeping larger questions of potential wrongdoing off the table. Smart move, I think.

$33 billion sale to a group of private equity firms last year,...2006

When HCA completed its $33 billion sale to a group of private equity firms last year, the deal left the company with $28 billion in debt. The company has since made moves to reduce the debt, but has voted against selling off assets to make that happen. That stands in sharp contrast to the last time it went private, in 1989, when it sold off a string of non-core holdings including a lab unit, hospital management subsidiary and its 50 percent stake in an insurance business.HCA does say that it plans to sell a hospital in Miami, and has dumped both of its hospitals in Switzerland, but won't speak about its other plans. In the mean time, it has stuck with old-fashioned internal cost cutting--notably marketing expenses and travel budgets--and worked to increase cash flow. These moves have allowed it to reduce the debt by a net $312 million.However, many analysts believe that over time, HCA will be forced to be more aggressive. The cost of interest on the debt is so high that it's sucking up the hospital company's cash flow, making it difficult or impossible to work on the principal. Predictably, HCA executives pan this idea, citing a 9.7 percent increase in earnings as one sign that the company's on the right track. Execs are also talking about refinancing the debt to cut interest costs.
To learn more about HCA's earnings, strategy and finances:- read this article from The Tennessean

Just how do you work with BANKRUPT CORPORATIONS?

Memphis Law Talk Accidental Lawyer Enjoys Work From the Bankruptcy Bench
Since her appointment more than 10 years ago as a federal judge for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Tennessee, Judge Jennie D. Latta has become a staunch force rallying against abuses of the bankruptcy system.
She has worked with the RISE Foundation (Responsibility, Initiative, Solutions and Empowerment) to study local bankruptcy trends. RISE will use the research to help the Memphis community better understand the types of problems that lead people into bankruptcy. Latta regularly presides over bankruptcy cases, encouraging lawyers to provide their clients the best possible legal representation.cont >>

HealthSouth will pay $14.2 million, and the two doctors have agreed to pay $700,000 total under separate settlement agreements,

Peanuts , once again, for the 'SETTLEMENT"
Now, where does this money go?

HealthSouth, two doctors settle federal claims
Posted by VAL WALTON / News staff writer
December 15, 2007 7:30 AM

HealthSouth Corp. and orthopedic surgeons Larry Lemak and Jim Andrews have agreed to pay a total of $14.9 million to settle health care fraud claims, authorities announced Friday.
HealthSouth will pay $14.2 million, and the two doctors have agreed to pay $700,000 total under separate settlement agreements, according to a statement released by the U.S. attorney's office in Birmingham.
Prosecutors said the settlement stems from allegations the Birmingham-based company submitted false Medicaid and Medicare claims to the government and paid kickbacks to doctors who referred patients for care in some of its hospitals, outpatient rehabilitation clinics and ambulatory surgery centers. The government contended the doctors were paid more than fair market value as medical directors while making the referrals. John T. Brennan of Washington, an attorney for Lemak, on Friday said Lemak's settlement involved civil claims, not kickbacks. Lemak agreed to pay $250,000 to resolve the claims, Brennan said.
Efforts to reach Andrews were unsuccessful Friday. His spokesman, Lanier Johnson, said Andrews was traveling out of the country. Andrews' settlement amount is $450,000, according to prosecutors.
The Justice Department said the settlement resolves issues involving claims HealthSouth made to Medicare and Medicaid for services provided to patients referred by Andrews and Lemak when HealthSouth had financial relationships with the doctors; their former partnership, the Alabama Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center; and their foundation, the American Sports Medicine Institute.
The actions, government lawyers said, violated the Medicare and Medicaid Anti-Kickback Statute and a provision of the Social Security Act known as the Stark law. The wide-ranging law prohibits physicians from making referrals for a "designated health service," payable by Medicare or Medicaid, to any entity with which the physicians have a financial relationship.
In a statement Friday, HealthSouth said the settlement resolves issues associated with various practices under the company's previous management team that were discovered and disclosed by new management more than two years ago.
HealthSouth's co-founder and former chief executive, Richard Scrushy, was ousted in 2003 after the FBI raided the headquarters and prosecutors accused him in a $2.7 billion accounting fraud.
The company, which is the nation's largest provider of inpatient rehabilitation services, operating in 26 states and Puerto Rico, said the $14.2 million settlement amount was disclosed earlier, in the company's third-quarter financial statement.
"The new HealthSouth is dedicated to a corporate culture characterized by integrity, quality and compliance - and supporting our employees in their ongoing efforts to provide high-quality care to patients across the country while providing the best return for our shareholders," said HealthSouth President and Chief Executive Officer Jay Grinney.
Prosecutors said the HealthSouth settlement also ends allegations the company paid kickbacks to and entered into improper financial relationships with other doctors, including a group of physicians in Los Angeles, in an attempt to induce patient referrals. The government's investigation of other doctors continues.
Thomas P. O'Brien, U.S. attorney for California's central district, said Medicare providers seeking federal funds must play by the rules.
"Providing sweet deals to physicians groups to ensure a steady stream of referrals runs afoul of those rules and will not be tolerated," O'Brien said in a statement.
Jeffrey S. Bucholtz, acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's Civil Division, said in a statement that hidden financial agreements between health care providers and physicians may influence where patients receive treatment and what treatment is received.
"Medicare beneficiaries deserve their physicians' unbiased judgment regarding their treatment, free of improper financial influences," Bucholtz said.
Brennan, Lemak's attorney, said the allegations made against his client covered the period from Jan. 1 to June 30, 2003. Lemak, like HealthSouth, went to the government in 2005 about the issue.
"This is a matter he wanted to resolve and put behind him," Brennan said.
Andrews and Lemak founded Alabama Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center in 1986 at HealthSouth Medical Center. With Scrushy's help, they grew it into a world-renowned enterprise for orthopedic care of athletes and dignitaries. Their association with HealthSouth hit a rocky patch after the accounting scandal erupted in March 2003 and Scrushy was fired.
The two moved their practice to St. Vincent's Birmingham in May 2005. Since then, they have been dissolving their alliance. Andrews is staying at St. Vincent's but Lemak is not and has started doing more surgeries at Brookwood Medical Center.
News staff writer Anna Velasco contributed to this report

Friday, December 14, 2007

Delaware Health Security Act Information....Finally a plan to address FRAUD

Single Payer Delaware Health Security Act Informationby Floyd McDowell
In the 2008 state legislative session, our Act will be re-introduced as Senate Bill 177 with an initial co-sponsorship of 18 state legislators. After its re-introduction, citizens may obtain a copy of this important Act, free of charge, by requesting it be mailed by the Legislative Council (phone toll-free at 800-282-8545) or by accessing the Act on our state's web site, and using the Bill Search section on the left side of your computer screen. This Act will provide every Delaware citizen comprehensive health care coverage from conception until ones last breath is taken without a cent from out-of-pocket expense for extra health insurance, co-payments or deductibles. It will tremendously enhance future economic/job development as our businesses compete in the global economy and will have funds to both strengthen and expand health care facilities and services throughout Delaware. At the end of this article, a specific list of benefits provided by our Act will be given that every citizen should understand and share with family members, friends and fellow Delaware citizens.
Our nonprofit, nonpartisan Delaware Unified Civic/Political Association requests that every Delaware citizen put priority on accomplishing the following: Study for a more complete understanding of our Act by accessing the Health Care page on our Association's web site (; Inform and strongly request and invite your family members and friends to become fully informed on this Act's direct importance to their future quality of life; Ask leaders of all organizations in which you have membership to help inform all members about this Act (see list of Delaware/national organizations on our Health Care web site page who have studied, understand and have endorsed single payer reform); Thank each state level elected state official who has co-sponsored this Act; and help our Association identify, enlist and support future candidates' for these state level decision-making elective offices who will sign off on helping enact this valuable legislative Act.
The best informative resource on state/national single payer and other health care reform plans and movements is the Physicians for a National Health Program. Their web site is They are the fastest growing physician's organization in our nation and their only goal is to help bring single payer health care reform to our states and nation. Their leadership critiqued and praised our Act before it was completed in final form. Of special importance is to access and type in the search window, "How Much Will a Single Payer System Cost?". Then scroll down or download the summaries of 6 national and 13 statewide research study findings documenting the program and cost effectiveness of single payer systems. The 8th study from the top is the comprehensive study accomplished in Delaware by the nationally acclaimed, prestigious research organization Solutions for Progress. Their study and research report is entitled, "Single Payer Financing for Universal Health Care in Delaware: Costs and Savings." Their website very competently critiques the health care plans of our presidential candidates, and the single payer acts passed by state legislators in Maine and California. Massachusetts placed their excellent single payer act on the state ballot and although outspent 60-1 by dishonest special interest fear mongers, it was only defeated 51-49. In the near future, a number of states will enact single payer reform acts that will not be vetoed by Brinks deliveries to their Governors. Citizen coalition movements, like our Delaware Association, are ever-growing in informed, supportive voters and will soon cause passage of these sensible substance single payer reform acts. Worthy of note here is that many state and national poll results show an average of 70% of citizens polled vote for single payer reform. We haven't had a poll in Delaware but at the well-attended legislative committee's official hearing on our Act, approximately 75% of the individuals and organization representatives who spoke gave support for our Act.
Any citizen, political candidate, elected incumbent or organization representative who has questions or needs additional information about our single payer De Health Security Act can obtain same by contacting our Act's contact resource Issue Area Facilitator, Dr. Floyd E. McDowell, Sr., 11 Dover Court, Bear, DE 19701; phone (302) 832-2799; and email address, We invite and urge every organization that conducts meetings for members on various topics to schedule at least one membership meeting on our single payer Delaware Health Security Act. Free of any charge, we will provide a Speaker/Discussant and we enthusiastically always desire a debate format with a spokesperson representing our special interest controlled status quo ongoing nonsystem.
Our single payer Delaware Health Security Act will be administered by a Delaware Health Security Authority. The Authority will be placed within the Delaware Department of Health and Human Services but will operate as an independent body and program. The State Authority's 15-member ruling board will be selected from the following sources: five from elected state officials via two from the House committee concerned with health care, two from the Senate committee concerned with health care and the Secretary of Health and Human Services representing the Governor's office; five representatives from different Delaware organizations representing health care professionals; and five members from Delaware consumer organizations that have endorsed single payer health care system reform at least five years prior to passage of our Act. A list of eligible consumer organizations is given on the Health Care page of our Association's web site. The Delaware Health Security Authority will hire an Executive Director who will work with and through the Authority and the following interactive Divisions: Administration; Planning; Benefits; and Quality Assurance. The responsibilities of the Authority, Executive Director and the four Divisions are explained in the body of the Act.
Our Act includes the creation of County Advisory Councils in each of our three counties. Council membership will be from the same three sources and in the same number of members as membership on the ruling state Authority. These County Councils will be grass roots individual and organization interactive operations involved in all aspects of county/state planning, implementation and evaluation in carrying out the requirements of our Delaware Health Security Act. State and national single payer leaders who critiqued our Act before its final composition highly praised the provision of these grass roots involved County Advisory Councils.
Our single payer Delaware Health Security Act is structured and will operate like our single payer Medicare/Medicaid Act and program. There will be a single form for health care providers to use as they both provide and bill for services rendered Delaware citizens and eligible Delaware workers who live out of state. Hospitals will receive a block grant allotment under a capitation arrangement. Each year the Act's Health Security Authority will negotiate with organizations representing all health care providers to set prices for every health care service. Then one form is submitted for payment as done in the single payer Medicare/Medicaid program. The overhead/administrative cost in the Medicare program is 1.5% compared to 33% wasted by controlling insurance company brokers our Act will eliminate. An important difference in our state's single payer program is that we will save more than enough funds to properly compensate health care providers whereas Medicare/Medicaid funds are not adequate. Our Act will eliminate the tons of unnecessary paperwork continually flowing into providers' offices. This flood of paperwork from totally unnecessary health insurance company controlling brokers with all of their fine print protection of bottom line profits will be eliminated from providers' lives. This will also eliminate the many costly hours that physicians and other health care professionals have to continuously waste helping office staff try to interpret the small print billing requirements of insurance companies. Simply ask one profound, revealing question. What does a health insurance company contribute to a physician's office, hospital, long-term care facility or any part of our health care system? Absolutely nothing. Not even a band-aid!
There is only one downside to implementing our Act and that is a temporary one. Many office workers handling paperwork will not be needed. Based on the Canadian Provinces' experience in implementing their single payer systems, there was a 5% increase in utilization of health care services. This was primarily caused by thoroughly covered citizens going in for preventive and interventive services. Our Act and every other state's single payer Act sets aside funds to offer training and economic support to these displaced office workers if they choose to remain in the field and become qualified to fill these additional needed health care positions.
Important information to know is how our Act will be funded. The first understanding is that by eliminating the totally unnecessary health insurance industry (as Michael Moore explains in his excellent documentary film "Sicko"), we will save at least 30% of our Delaware health care funds. At least another 10% will be saved by implementing the 7-step proven plan to stop fraud explained in our nation's recognized authority (Dr. Malcolm Sparrow of the Harvard University School of Government) on health care fraud's must read publication "License to Steal." This will reduce the huge loss of funds from our taxes, citizen out of pocket expenses and private businesses.
Our Act will establish a Health Security Authority fund into which Delaware health care funds from all sources will be deposited. These sources include the following:
All monies the state currently appropriates to pay for health care services or health insurance premiums for state, counties, cities, towns and other government subdivisions;
All monies the state receives from the federal government to pay for health care services or health insurance premiums. Waivers will be obtained as our Health Security Authority can prove our Act will not only cover all benefits and services these federal funds cover but will add more for comprehensive health care coverage;
Private individual and employer health insurance payments and out of pocket health care expenses will be replaced as follows: A payroll tax on private business (as required to overcome the 1974 federal ERISA federal act single payer barrier) as follows:
All self-employed (single employer) businesses are exempt from this tax:
4 percent for employers with from 2 to 9 employees;
5 percent for employers with 10 to 24 employees;
7 percent for employers with 25 to 49 employees; and
9 percent for employers with 50 or more employees.
The payroll tax may be shared by employers and employees.
Every cent an employer spends for employee health care coverage, plus the administrative/overhead cost of providing coverage, is tax deductible.
The Act's savings will enable those businesses now providing coverage to pay less for comprehensive coverage our Act will provide.
All head of households and persons subject to Delaware's income tax shall pay a Health Security income tax of 2.5 percent of net (after all deductions) taxable income;
Persons filing a Delaware income tax return shall pay an additional income surtax of 2.5 percent on net taxable income in excess of $250,000. Married couples filing a Delaware joint income tax return shall pay an additional income surtax of 2.5 percent on net taxable income in excess of $500,000;
At a number of meetings discussing our Act, those in attendance were asked to list and total their annual personal/family out of pocket expenses for all health care costs and compare that total annual cost against the total of 2.5 percent of their net taxable state income tax. Everyone reported savings under our single payer Act.
Under our single payer Delaware Health Security Act, the jobs, careers and even some life or death medical care decisions of physicians will not be controlled by private health insurance companies, aided and abetted by other corporate special health care interests. Every human being covered under our Act will receive a Health Security Card which enables access to all health care services in our state, nation and other countries that accept this assured coverage. No extra health care insurance or out of pocket expenses for health care services and neither co-payments nor deductibles will ever be encountered. Our Act's array of comprehensive health care coverage benefits are presented for three important areas of Delaware life: individual citizens covered, contributions to our state's future economic/job development and to the strengthening and expansion of our state's future health care system.
Under our Act, every citizen covered will receive comprehensive health care coverage which includes the following:
All services of physicians, including specialists; dental care; hospital services; all types of long-term care; laboratory services; all pharmaceutical drugs, all mental health services; professional services of psychologists, social workers, nurses and all therapy specialists, treatment of AIDS patients, treatment of all addictions, including nicotine, alcohol, controlled substances, eating disorders and gambling: all special health care equipment and aids such as wheel chairs, special beds, hearing aids and eye glasses, comprehensive services for disabled citizens, special services such as ambulance services, equal quality services for citizens in special facilities such as special health needs hospitals/facilities, and juvenile and adult correctional facilities, and promoting preventive health programs such as nutrition, exercise and weight reduction;
Provide every citizen early prevention and intervention services which will give our state a healthier citizenry while reducing health care costs;
Will eliminate the Medicare requirement that one must give up all savings and property before the program will pay for long-term health care services. Added to lifting this burden on our senior citizens will be eliminating the stressful cost for Medi-gap insurance, long-term care insurance and the cost of prescription drugs;
Will prevent all future health care debt, which causes over half the personal bankruptcies and is a major reason many citizens can't buy homes, automobiles or other needed property;
Based on research findings from the comprehensive Delaware study on single payer effectiveness accomplished by the prestigious research organization Solutions for Progress, Delaware citizens would personally save approximately $1 Billion dollars annually which they could spend in our state's economy to improve the quality of life for themselves and family members
Will allow emergency rooms to be used strictly for emergency health care needs;
Will enable one's health care records to be assembled in one file and quickly transmitted electronically to health care providers in our state, other states and other nations; and
Our single payer Act will eliminate or greatly reduce the debilitating effects of chronic anxiety and stress that weighs heavily on our over 100,000 uninsured and even more citizens who are underinsured. Chronic stress causes some illnesses and lowers one's immune systems' ability to fight other illnesses.
Our Association's program and cost effective single payer Delaware Health Security Act will make the following important contributions to our state's future economic/job development:
Help Delaware businesses be more competitive in the global economy. For example, Canada and the other 28 industrialized, developed nations with single payer or modified single payer health care systems can build a motor vehicle for from $1,600 to $3,000 less PER VEHICLE than we can build one in Delaware. We will not only lose Chrysler and General Motors manufacturers but with continuing annual health care costs spiraling, we will lose more companies and attract less in the future.
One of the fastest rising costs to both private and public employers is Workers Compensation insurance rates. Our Act will reduce those rates by approximately 40 percent:
Will lower insurance coverage costs for automobile and other vehicles used by Delaware businesses and citizens and for business facilities and citizens' homes as our Act will eliminate the medical liability costs for these insurance coverage policies;
Our Act will stop the double digit annual health care cost increases as only the lower rate of inflation will apply;
Under our Act, all payments to health care providers shall be made within 10-14 days, whereas now some providers have to wait months for payments;
Our state's smaller businesses will have less employee turnover caused by employees leaving for jobs that provide health care coverage. These employees will be more productive as they'll be healthier and not stressed out when facing a personal health problem or one in her/his family;
Will eliminate all collective bargaining over health care coverage benefits between employees/retirees and both private and public employers;
Our Act will cover all health care needs of retired workers from both private and public employers. This will free large amounts of funds these employers have to now provide that can be used for other purposes; and
Will simply solve the medical liability insurance problem for physicians and other health care professionals by self-insuring through our Act's Health Security Fund at a fraction of the rates now charged by insurance companies.
Our Act will save and provide funds needed to strengthen and expand health care facilities and services throughout our state. Funds saved will help provide health care clinics and other facilities to provide quick, easy access to services in every part of our state. Funds will be available to train nurses and other qualified staff our future health care programs will need. But one of the most important contributions our Act will make is to return health care decision-making to health care professionals and eliminate special interest corporate controlling business from health care programs.
Our current Delaware special health care interest driven nonsystem is one of the biggest cash cow rip-offs in our state's history and the take increases on an annual basis. Keep deeply in mind that approximately 90% of this cash flow comes from the pockets of hard-working Delaware citizens. The key dishonest, deceptive way these special profit-driven interests want to keep milking this ever-growing cash cow is by obsessively trying to wash and dry citizens' brains and belief systems by saturating us with claims our single payer Act and similar Acts in Canada and other nations are government run and controlled "socialized medicine and health care." These claims are total lies of the lowest possible order. Passage of this important Act by our state's 68 elected decision-making in our Executive and Legislative branches of OUR state government will ENABLE our Act to begin its value-laden reform of health care desperately needed in our state. Just as these elected decision-makers have ENABLED private businesses to be licensed and operate without being controlled by government bureaucrats. Same ENABLING laws apply to the licensing and practices of physicians, nurses, teachers and other professionals who render professional services in our state. The core motive of these dishonest special interest propagandists, their hordes of lobbyists, aligned political allies and other "go-along-to-get" parasites is to scare the bejabbers out of us into believing some government bureaucrat will dictate how you or a family member will receive health care services. Factual reality is that our Act will totally free physicians and all health care providers to make all health care decisions now sometimes superimposed on providers by bottom line protecting insurance company broker staff. Our Act will also free covered citizens to make all decisions related to choosing their health care providers. Of even greater future advantage to our state's health care system is terminating the control of physicians' and other health care providers' jobs, careers, health care decisions and economic future by totally unnecessary health insurance industry brokers. These aforementioned dishonest special interest touts also keep a steady stream of misleading propaganda filling our ears by depicting our current debacle as "the market place at work." Tell even a college Freshman course in Economics 101 that a totally unnecessary broker industry contributes nothing to a huge statewide enterprise, controls the jobs, careers and key decisions of staff involved in the enterprise and wastes/steals approximately 40% of the enterprises' income while proclaiming this scam is the "market place at work" and most would be helped off the floor with their laughter heard outside the classroom.
A final bit of information should help each informed citizen have added motivation to join our Association's efforts to have our 68 elected decision-makers in our state's executive and legislative branches of government understand and support our single payer act. First read the Oath of Office each swears to that is given on our web site's Oath of Office page. Then seriously ponder this final information which directly relates to every citizen. Using findings from the comprehensive Delaware study on single payer program and cost effectiveness in our state accomplished by the Solutions for Progress research organization, approximately 90% of our DE health care funds are provided by hard-working citizens. This includes approximately 70% from taxes and 20% from out of pocket expenses. In 2007, we lost a minimum of 40% of our DE health care funds to insurance company brokers and health care fraud. This loss figures out to $8 million per day with approximately $7 million per day of these wasted/stolen funds coming from citizens' pockets. While our 68 state elected decision makers have only 18 state legislators supporting our Act as we enter 2008, citizens' tax funds provides and offers each of these 68 and their immediate family members a comprehensive health care coverage benefit package. For our 62 state legislators, this coverage offered is for part-time work.