HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » kpete » Journal


Profile Information

Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 50,695

Journal Archives

Nate Silver Really Regrets His Prediction On Scottish Independence Vote

Nate Silver admits that he committed one of his own cardinal sins last year when he dismissed the chances of a campaign for Scottish independence.

"When I was in Scotland last year on a book tour, a reporter asked me an off-handed question about the referendum and I provided an off-handed answer despite not really having spent any time studying it," Silver told TPM in an email on Thursday. "That's not usually my style, and I regret the error of having behaved like a television pundit."

Anyone familiar with Silver's media criticism knows that a comparison to a pundit is about the most damning indictment the polling guru can render.


We need to start demanding the truth, not what ‘national security’ tells us we need to know.

Matt Stoller
The Solution to ISIS Is the First Amendment

As the elite panic about ISIS — the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant — continues apace, it’s worth looking at how violations of the First Amendment have allowed this group to flourish, and just generally screw up US policy-making. The gist of the problem is that Americans have been lied to for years about our foreign policy, and these lies have now created binding policy constraints on our leaders which make it impossible to eliminate groups like ISIS.


Adopting a realistic policy on ISIS means a mass understanding who our allies actually are and what they want, as well as their leverage points against us and our leverage points on them. I believe Americans are ready for an adult conversation about our role in the world and the nature of the fraying American order, rather than more absurd and hollow bromides about American exceptionalism.

Until that happens, Americans will not be willing to pay any price for a foreign policy, and rightfully so. Fool me once, shame on you. And so forth.

Unwinding the classified state, and beginning the adult conversation put off for seventy years about the nature of American power, is the predicate for building a global order that can drain the swampy brutal corners of the world that allow groups like ISIS to grow and thrive. To make that unwinding happen, we need to start demanding the truth, not what ‘national security’ tells us we need to know. The Constitution does not mention the words ‘national security’, it says ‘common defense.’ And that means that Americans should be getting accurate information about what exactly we are defending.


Exceptional Oxymoron-The land of the free imprisons more people than any other nation in the world

Exceptional Oxymoron

by digby

The land of the free imprisons more people than any other nation in the world:

Both in raw numbers and by percentage of the population, the United States has the most prisoners of any developed country in the world — and it has the largest total prison population of any nation. That didn’t change in 2013. After several years in which the prison population dropped slightly, the raw number of inmates in United States custody went up again in 2013.

More than 1.57 million inmates sat behind bars in federal, state, and county prisons and jails around the country as of December 31, 2013. In the federal prisons, more than half of those sentenced to a stints of a year or longer are still there for drug crimes. In states including Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, and Georgia, at least 1 percent of male residents were in prison on December 31. And across the country, racial disparities persist. Black men are six times more likely than white men to be in prison. Hispanic men are 2.4 times more likely, according to a Sentencing Project analysis of the data.

This doesn’t paint the full picture of the U.S. incarceration system. Many have estimated the total number of U.S. incarceration to be more than 2.4 million. This is in part because another estimated 12 million individuals cycle through the county jail systems in a given year for periods of less than a year, and are therefore not factored into a snapshot on December 31. There are also other mechanisms of incarceration not factored into this figure, including immigration detention, civil commitment, and Indian Country facilities, according to a Prison Policy Initiative briefing.

Does that make any sense at all?

Sargent Sends Major Lindsey Graham & Colonel John McCain To Iraq

Exclusive: Family Business At The National Security Agency (She's NSA/He Runs Intell Biz From Home)

Exclusive: Family Business At The National Security Agency

A powerful National Security Agency official involved in the controversial domestic surveillance program is married to an executive at a company that appears to be doing or seeking business with the agency. The executive also registered an intelligence business at the couple’s home.
The NSA says it has a strict ethics policy.

posted on Sept. 18, 2014, at 4:53 p.m.

The spouse, for years, has also had an intelligence technology company incorporated at the couple’s suburban residence in Maryland.

A large government contracting firm that appears to be doing or seeking business with the National Security Agency employs the spouse of one of the most powerful officials at the agency, according to corporate records, press releases, and company websites. But the NSA has declined to address whether there is a potential conflict of interest or to disclose any information about contracts or the official’s financial holdings.

The spouse, for years, has also had an intelligence technology company incorporated at the couple’s suburban residence in Maryland.

The NSA official, Teresa H. Shea, is director of the Signals Intelligence Directorate, which means she oversees electronic eavesdropping for intelligence purposes. She’s held that crucial position since 2010. SIGINT, as it is called, is the bread and butter of NSA espionage operations, and it includes intercepting and decoding phone calls, whether cellular or landline; radio communications; and internet traffic. Shea’s directorate was involved in the controversial domestic surveillance program, much of which was revealed by Edward Snowden.

As for Shea’s husband, James, he is currently a vice president at DRS Signal Solutions, part of DRS Technologies, a major American defense contracting company owned by the Italian defense giant Finmeccanica. On his LinkedIn page, he boasts of his “core focus” in “SIGINT systems,” and cites his employer, DRS, for its work in “signals intelligence, cyber, and commercial test and measurement applications.”


Watch Obama’s Top Science Advisor Repeatedly Shut Down Climate Deniers At House Climate Hearing

Read about it here:

Judge Who Sentenced AL Gov. Don Siegelman---Accused of Assaulting Wife & Is Urged to Resign

Judge Mark E. Fuller, right, accused of hitting his wife, appeared in Fulton County Court in Atlanta in early September. Credit Brant Sanderlin/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, via Associated Press

.......a federal judge in Alabama on Thursday faced abrupt and potent pressure to resign after he was charged with striking his wife last month at a luxury hotel here.

Although District Court Judge Mark E. Fuller of the Middle District of Alabama was arrested and charged with battery in early August, it was only this week that several of his state’s top political figures demanded in rapid succession that he leave the bench.


Within days of the arrest, the appeals court decided that Judge Fuller would not be assigned new cases while his was pending, and that other judges would assume his caseload.

Judge Fuller is not an obscure name in legal circles, having come under significant criticism for his handling of the trial and sentencing of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman in 2006. Mr. Siegelman, a Democrat, was convicted on seven counts, including bribery and mail fraud, in a case that many saw as politically motivated. That history, lawyers said, could be adding to the uproar Judge Fuller faces.


"America is a Christian nation because we sell bacon" (but what if - I'm a vegetarian?!?)

Religious right leader Bryan Fischer, of the American Family Association, offered definitive “proof” the other day as to why America is a “Christian” nation and not a “Jewish” nation.

You want one single item of proof that America is a Christian nation and not a Jewish nation and not an Islamic nation?” he asked. “One single bit of proof is all you need: we freely allow restaurants and grocery stores to sell and to serve bacon. That can only happen in a Christian country.”

“So the sheer fact that we freely allow the sale and consumption of bacon,” he continued, “is absolute proof that we are, in fact, a Christian nation.


"You wanted equality? BOOM! There's your equality. I decked you just like I would deck a man..."

Robert Stacy McCain is a real piece of work. It offends him that women would ask to be treated equally and then turn around and act outraged when a woman gets knocked unconscious by a man:

What if, instead of going to the casino with a date, Ray Rice had gone to the casino with a male buddy who got drunk and caused a scene? What if, after Ray and his buddy got on the elevator, the buddy had started yelling angrily at him, “getting in his face?”


There’s your equality. How do you like it?

Of course, feminists don’t believe in this kind of equality, an equality which would make women and men equally vulnerable to the consequences of “getting in the face” of a 200-pound pro athlete. However, as a skinny man who doesn’t enjoy pain, I can absolutely guarantee you that I would never make the mistake of engaging in a face-to-face shouting match with a guy like Ray Rice.

Here’s some helpful advice: Just walk away.


Just walk away.


I've been wondering how some would react if Ray Rice's fiance had pulled out a gun and shot him dead after he threw the first punch.

Self Defense, Stand Your Ground and all.

wtf?-Doctor Admits to Providing Medically Unnecessary Chemotherapy to Patients

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASETuesday, September 16, 2014
Detroit-Area Doctor Admits to Providing Medically Unnecessary Chemotherapy to Patients

Hematologist-Oncologist Pleads Guilty to Fraudulent Billing, Soliciting Kickbacks and Money Laundering
A Detroit-area hematologist-oncologist pleaded guilty today for his role in a health care fraud scheme, admitting that he administered unnecessary chemotherapy to fraudulently bill the Medicare program and private insurance companies. According to court records, the scheme enabled the doctor to submit approximately $225 million in claims to Medicare over six years.

Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade of the Eastern District of Michigan, Special Agent in Charge Paul M. Abbate of the FBI’s Detroit Field Office, Special Agent in Charge Lamont Pugh III of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) Chicago Regional Office and Chief Richard Weber of the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) made the announcement.

Farid Fata, M.D., 49, of Oakland Township, Michigan, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Paul D. Borman of the Eastern District of Michigan to 13 counts of health care fraud, one count of conspiracy to pay or receive kickbacks and two counts of money laundering. At his sentencing, scheduled for Feb. 23, 2014, Fata faces a statutory maximum of 175 years in prison.

“At a time when they are most vulnerable and fearful, cancer patients put their lives in the hands of doctors and endure risky treatments at their recommendation,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell. “Dr. Fata today admitted he put greed before the health and safety of his patients, putting them through unnecessary chemotherapy and other treatments just so that he could collect additional millions from Medicare. The mere thought of what he did is chilling. Thanks to the quick action of our partners, he was arrested and has now admitted his guilt.”

“This defendant not only stole funds from taxpayer funded insurance programs, but he also deliberately administered unnecessary chemotherapy so that he could bill insurers for expensive chemotherapy treatments,” said U.S. Attorney McQuade. “His exploitation of patients for his own profit caused victims to suffer physically and emotionally.”

“A little more than a year ago, the FBI and its law enforcement partners acted swiftly to arrest Dr. Farid Fata and shield his patients from further harm,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Abbate. “Today’s plea is the culmination of the diligent investigative work jointly conducted by the FBI, IRS, the Department of Health and Human Services, and prosecutors to protect the public and ensure that justice is served. Our hope is that this outcome offers some measure of solace to the victims and reassures the community of our collective resolve to prevent similar violations of patients’ trust.”

“Dr. Fata’s utter disregard for his patients’ welfare was quite simply deplorable,” said HHS-OIG Special Agent in Charge Pugh. “The OIG will ceaselessly work to bring such criminals to the justice they deserve.”

“It’s exceptionally distressing to see this kind of fraud committed by individuals in occupations that profess high ethical standards," said IRS-CI Chief Weber. “When doctors commit fraud through their profession, it is not only a violation of the public trust but also a complete renunciation of their Hippocratic oath. Those who commit Medicare fraud are pick-pocketing from every American taxpayer.”

Fata admitted that he is a licensed medical doctor who owned and operated a cancer treatment clinic, Michigan Hematology Oncology, P.C. (MHO), which had locations in Rochester Hills, Clarkston, Bloomfield Hills, Lapeer, Sterling Heights, Troy and Oak Park, Michigan. He also owned a diagnostic testing facility, United Diagnostics PLLC, located in Rochester Hills, Michigan.

In his guilty plea today, Fata admitted to prescribing and administering aggressive chemotherapy, cancer treatments, intravenous iron and other infusion therapies to patients who did not need them in order to increase his billings to the Medicare program and other insurance companies. Fata then submitted fraudulent claims to Medicare and other insurers for these unnecessary treatments.

Fata submitted approximately $225 million in claims to Medicare between August 2007 and July 2013, of which approximately $109 million was for chemotherapy and other cancer treatments. Medicare paid over $91 million to Fata, of which over $48 million was for chemotherapy and other cancer treatments.

Fata also admitted to soliciting kickbacks from Guardian Angel Hospice and Guardian Angel Home Health Care in exchange for his referral of patients to those facilities.

Fata further admitted to using the proceeds of the health care fraud at his medical practice, MHO, to promote the carrying on of additional health care fraud at United Diagnostics, where he administered unnecessary and expensive PET (positron emission tomography) scans for which he billed a private insurer.

This case was investigated by the FBI, HHS-OIG and IRS-CI and was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, under the supervision of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan. This case is being prosecuted by Deputy Chief Gejaa T. Gobena, Assistant Chief Catherine K. Dick and Trial Attorney Matthew C. Thuesen of the Fraud Section, and by Health Care Fraud Unit Chief Wayne F. Pratt, Deputy Chief Sarah Resnick Cohen and White Collar Crime Unit Chief John K. Neal of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan . 

Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, now operating in nine cities across the country, has charged nearly 2,000 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $6 billion. In addition, the HHS Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, working in conjunction with the HHS-OIG, are taking steps to increase accountability and decrease the presence of fraudulent providers.

To learn more about the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT), go to: www.stopmedicarefraud.gov .

For further information about this case, visit: http://www.justice.gov/usao/mie/news/2013/2013_9_18_2013_dr_fata.html
Go to Page: « Prev 1 ... 600 601 602 603 604 605 606 607 608 609 610 ... 1703 Next »