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FreakinDJ's Journal
FreakinDJ's Journal
January 7, 2012

GOP’s Achilles Heel – Free Trade / Trickle Down Economics

Long before the current economic collapse began whole towns suffered as factories closed and good paying jobs left the country. Now we have an election where both sides are trying to claim intellectual / ethical supremacy in restoring those same jobs without ever mentioning it was the Fail Policies of “Free Trade” and “Trickle Down Economics” that has gotten us here

There is no denying the effects of Free Trade and the Off Shoring of America’s manufacturing jobs has finally brought America to her knees.

January 6, 2012

AseraCare Hospice accused of Medicare fraud

Bernice Yeung, California Watch

A national for-profit hospice care company that is partially owned by a San Francisco private equity firm has allegedly bilked Medicare of millions of dollars, according to a legal complaint filed this week by the U.S. Department of Justice.

In court documents, the U.S. government alleges that since at least 2007, AseraCare Hospice of Texas has fraudulently certified patients as terminally ill to illegally collect Medicare payments.

"AseraCare, through its reckless business practices, admitted and retained individuals who were not eligible to receive Medicare hospice benefits, because it was financially lucrative - and did so even after AseraCare's auditor alerted AseraCare to troubling problems," court documents state.

Hospice care provides palliative care - ranging from pain relief to psychological and spiritual services - to patients who have less than six months to live. About $13 billion in Medicare funding is spent on hospice care each year, and the industry annually serves 1.54 million Americans and more than 91,000 Californians.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/05/MN4C1MLICT.DTL#ixzz1igWaAatx
January 6, 2012

Santorum's S.C. campaign gets boost from BlueCross BlueShield execs

By Gina Smith | The State (Columbia, S.C.)

Rick Santorum’s S.C. base — at least financially speaking — is BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, located in northeast Richland County.

The former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, who is getting a second look by many after his virtual tie with GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney in the Iowa caucuses, had raised $80,080 from S.C. donors as of the end of 2011’s third quarter.

More than a quarter of that money, $21,000, came from top executives of BlueCross, the largest S.C.-based insurance company, according to the Federal Elections Commission, which tracks candidate donations.

James D’Alessio, the company’s vice president of government affairs, is Santorum’s “S.C. business coalitions” chairman, helping, in his spare time, Santorum build S.C. business ties.

Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2012/01/06/134998/santorums-sc-campaign-gets-boost.html#storylink=cpy

January 6, 2012

Company accused of ripping off Medicare hospice benefits

Jordan Rau

WASHINGTON — A national hospice company improperly cycled patients through nursing homes and hospices with a goal of making as much profit as possible from Medicare, according to a whistleblower lawsuit announced this week.

Federal attorneys also sued the company, AseraCare, alleging that it milked Medicare's hospice benefit by pressuring its employees to admit people into hospices who weren't dying and that it resisted discharging them despite evidence that they weren't deteriorating. One hospice patient who should have been immobile from end-stage heart disease was healthy enough to go to his granddaughter's graduation and on a berry-picking excursion with a friend, the government charges.

For years, some critics of Medicare's hospice benefit have said that the way the government pays providers gives them incentives to abuse the system. The suits against AseraCare, a Fort Smith, Ark.-based company that operates in 19 states, follow several other suits against big hospice companies, but they go further in alleging that the company coordinated its use of nursing care and hospice care to maximize Medicare reimbursements.

The company is owned by Golden Living, a national company that also provides skilled nursing and other services. The whistleblowers contend that AseraCare first recruited patients who were eligible for skilled nursing care for 20 days, for which Medicare pays the entire bill. After 20 days, when Medicare requires patients to pick up part of the tab, AseraCare had the nursing homes send the patients to hospices, according to the lawsuit.

Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2012/01/05/134935/company-accused-of-ripping-off.html#storylink=cpy

January 5, 2012

Why would America need “Indefinite Detention of US Citizens” measures? (Tin Foil Warning)

From the moment I read the reports of the Indefinite Detention clause of the NDAA this thought has sent chills down my spine. We’ve won the Wars on Terrorism Bush Jr. started and by pulling troops out of occupying positions in Iraq and Afghanistan we have immeasurably reduced the chances of Foreign Terrorist attacking us on our own soil. But more importantly – why US Citizens would be so enraged as to plot and commit terrorist acts against their own country.

Collapse of World Monetary System

World Oil Embargo against the USA / Peak Oil

Termination of Social Security Benefits

Termination of Medicare programs

January 5, 2012

The Cruel Manipulation of American Democracy Continues

What happened in Iowa only represents the latest regressive manifestation of how huge amounts of money are used to not only fund negative attack ads and to the determine to winner of the political process, but more importantly exposes how the cruel manipulation of American democracy continues.

Getting the "greed money" out of politics is now an urgent growing public demand. We have seen first hand how some in the ranks of the 1% that control the wealth of the nation will take any measure necessary to satisfy their narrow political will and exclusive ideology all at the expense of our democracy.

There is no accountability nor full disclosure of the greedy "hidden" damp hands that predetermine the outcome of elections across the nation. On Tuesday, the charade went down in Iowa. Next it will be in New Hampshire, then in South Carolina, Florida and so on. This is why we need a Constitutional Amendment to make elections publicly financed and free from monetary corruption. Let's stop this disgrace!

Income inequality leads to economic injustice that undermines basic fairness and democracy. Both Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr demanded economic equality and justice for all. Occupy the Dream/Occupy Wall Street is now mobilizing throughout the country to challenge these inequities and to restore equal opportunity and a participatory democracy for all where the dream of freedom, justice and equality will be a reality for all.

Russell Simmons

January 5, 2012

Occupy Wall Street has changed the national conversation

Arianna Huffington
January 4, 2012

In 2012, Americans will go to the polls and vote for who they want to represent them in Washington. But, as 2011 showed, the real political momentum is not to be found in Washington. Our institutions have let us down, not only by failing to prevent the biggest financial crisis since the Depression, but also by only producing suboptimal solutions at best to the multiple problems we're facing.

In fact, the crisis itself was more of a symptom than a cause. The trends had been in motion for decades: the decline of the middle class, growing inequality and downward mobility. But, in 2011, with the credibility of our political system in tatters, something happened. People said "enough," and decided to take matters into their own hands. Time magazine captured the moment by making the protester its Person of the Year for 2011.

The message of OWS was broad: the status quo is broken, the economic system rigged to unfairly help those who least need it, and we desperately need change. Some criticized the movement for not immediately having tangible, concrete goals. But, in fact, the simplicity of the message was part of what fueled its growth. Its appeal crossed party lines, generational lines and even class lines.

Suddenly, three years after the financial crisis plunged the country into recession, Americans were coming together to protest, echoing Frederick Douglass' truism that "power concedes nothing without a demand; it never did and it never will." By the time President Obama, at a December speech in Osawatomie, Kan., identified inequality as "the defining issue of our time," he was not leading the charge, but joining the chorus - the Occupy Wall Street protesters had been saying the same thing for nearly three months.

edited to add link

January 4, 2012

Is FDIC still paying off on "Loan Losses"

One West Bank’s “sweetheart” deal with the FDIC, they will actually earn BIG BANK for any Indymac loans that go to short sale or foreclosure.

Any “losses” taken for any short sale or foreclosure is calculated in such a way that One West Bank just CAN’T LOSE

Now it makes sense why loan mods are so darn hard to work out! They have an big incentive to NOT work them out!

And now the FDIC needs to start borrowing money from the Treasury (i.e. taxpayers) to make it all work?


You can't say this didn't happen on Obama's watch

January 4, 2012

Economic Conditions `Far Worse' in 2012, Says Jakobsen

Steen Jakobsen, chief economist at Saxo Bank A/S, discusses the outlook for the global economy, Federal Reserve policy disclosures and China. He speaks with Linzie Janis and Linda Yueh on Bloomberg Television's "Countdown." (Source: Bloomberg)



January 4, 2012

Public Pressure Re-Opens Indiana Statehouse Doors

Caving into intense public pressure, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) this morning rescinded an order that would have barred thousands of Hoosiers from the state Capitol as the legislature considers a so-called right to work (RTW) bill. As I write, we hear that three doors are open and workers are streaming in, with lines of people wrapped around the block.

On Dec. 30, the Daniels administration announced it would limit the number of people allowed in the statehouse to 3,000, including the 1,700 employees. The ban did not include lobbyists who would continue to have unfettered access. But it would have closed the doors on thousands of workers who are planning to be in Indianapolis for the battle over the RTW legislation.

Daniels admitted the outcry over closing the doors was the major factor in his decision to rescind the restrictions. When they were announced Indiana AFL-CIO President Nancy Guyott said:

Under this policy neither lobbyist nor donor will be turned away—yet everyday taxpaying citizens will be. This arrogant move is clearly aimed at working people who in 2011 went to the Statehouse to protest the anti-worker agenda being advanced there—and it is wrong. Our Constitution guarantees us the right to petition our government, and this limits that fundamental right.


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