Why Obama Care Rates Are Rising; Or, Why Aetna Can Take Their Damn Ball and Go Home!

aetnaanthemprofits

We the people of the Untied States (meaning our government, which is us…) need to be more careful whom we let onto our playground.

Aetna, a for-profit insurance company that participates in covering Americans under Obamacare, is crying and whining that they are losing money covering previously uninsured Americans, who signed up for the low-cost insurance programs. How much profit is enough? Aetna is making enormous bottom-line profits!

They are currently trying to conduct mergers with other insurance companies, one being Humana. Like a spoiled rotten kid on the playground, they told the and the Justice Department, if the merger was not approved, they would pull out of the Obamacare exchanges. Actually, this sounds more like healthcare blackmail to me.

Huffington Post reporters, Jonathan Cohen and Jeff Young, blew the story wide open when they obtained and printed a copy of Aetna’s CEO threatening the DOJ.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/aetna-obamacare-pullout-humana-merger_us_57b3d747e4b04ff883996a13

 

In a very clear and concise article, posted on August 29, 2016, Wendell Potter, a writer for Moyers & Co., details exactly, the profits and returns from all aspects of Aetna’s business. They are making handsome profits. Here are some of the highlights.

  1. […]”since January 2014, the date Bertolini mentioned above, Aetna has reported operating profits of $6.7 billion. That’s right. Even though Bertolini said Aetna hasn’t yet turned a profit on its Obamacare business, overall it has pocketed nearly $7 billion.”
  2. “Since March 5, 2009 — the day President Obama kicked off the debate on what would become Obamacare — Aetna’s stock price has increased 631 percent.”
  3. “Now, here’s something else you need to know that most of the media ignored. Aetna made a boatload of money between April and June of 2016. Both revenue and profits were up considerably over the same period in 2015. Aetna’s operating earnings increased 8.5 percent, from $722.1 million during the second quarter of 2015 to $783.3 million in the second quarter this year. Total revenues for the quarter increased to almost $16 billion.”
  4. 4. “During the first six months of this year, Aetna actually got almost as much revenue from taxpayers via the government’s Medicare and Medicaid programs ($13 billion) as it got from its privately insured customers ($14 billion). In fact, Aetna’s government business is growing while its commercially insured book of business is shrinking.”
  5. “And get this: Aetna and the other big insurers wouldn’t be getting as much profitable business from the government if not for Obamacare. Keep in mind that most of the newly insured Americans have coverage because of the Medicaid expansion made possible by Obamacare. Aetna and many of its competitors have benefited financially from this expansion because many states contract with private insurers to manage their Medicaid programs.”
  6. “And then there is Medicare. Aetna and many other insurers participate in the Medicare Advantage program, the private alternative to traditional Medicare, and they’ve figured out how to convert a lot of the billions of dollars in revenue they get from the federal government to profits.
  7. So, thanks to Obama — and more specifically, Obamacare — Aetna and its competitors are rolling in the federal dough.”

If this isn’t maddening enough, the obscene compensation that Aetna Chairman and CEO Mark Bertolini receives further prove that greed is KING in the US. Again, I ask, how much is enough? According to the Hartford Courant, […] “CEO Mark Bertolini received $27.9 million in compensation last year, according to a filing Friday with the Securities and Exchange Commission. About $24.8 million of the package was due to gains in value on restricted stock that vested in 2015 and on stock options he was awarded 10 years ago and exercised in 2015. The total was up from $15 million in 2014. His compensation also included $1,034,483 in salary, $1.84 million in cash bonus, and $271,908 in perks, mostly from the cost of his using the corporate aircraft for personal use. The Courant calculates compensation as the sum of salary, bonuses, and value gained on the exercise of stock options and the vesting of stock awards, and the value of perquisites, such as the 401(k) match and personal use of corporate aircraft. Separately, he received $5.97 million in restricted stock and $8.14 million in stock options whose ultimate value will be determined in future years.

All that, combined with the profits Aetna had made are not enough, not enough to justify continuing coverage Americans who need insurance?

Let’s review.

Since the start of Obamacare, they have made $7 Billion in Profit.

In the last six months, Aetna made nearly as much from Government contracts for Medicaid and Medicare $13 Billion as they did from their privately insured customers, $14 Billion.

GO HOME AETNA. GOOD RIDDANCE. But, our pails and shovels, all of our Medicaid and Medicare customers will come back to us, you get NONE OF THEM. They will go the nonprofit insurers like Kaiser, who’s CEO was quoted in Potter’s article as saying, “I view it through the lens of my mission,” Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson told Modern Healthcare reporter Bob Herman last week. “It obligates to us to figure it out, not to get out.” Tyson said his company, a $61 billion system that includes health plans, hospitals, and medical groups, is “absolutely” sticking with the exchanges over the long term. “The idea that I would turn my back on a segment of the American population who really needs the coverage and the care — I’m in for the long haul,” Tyson said.

Let’s hear it for Americans’ health before obscene profits and compensation packages!

You can make a profit fine, but not pornographically on the backs of sick Americans.

Let’s all send this idea to our congress people and Senators; they are always at a loss for good ideas.

 

Read More

http://billmoyers.com/story/cry-river-aetna/

http://www.courant.com/business/connecticut-insurance/hc-boston-aetna-20160408-story.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/aetna-obamacare-pullout-humana-merger_us_57b3d747e4b04ff883996a13

This post was first published in the Column “Lean to the Left” in the Santa Clarita Gazette.

Khizr Khan, the Right Messenger at the Right Time

IMG_0068This post first appeared in the Opinion section of The Santa Clarita Gazette, by Andrea Slominski on 8/04/2016

It is possible that the words of a Harvard-educated Muslim immigrant from Pakistan, and his wife, may just save us from ourselves. How fitting, that by sharing their love of America, their reverence for the Constitution, and the insurmountable loss of their son to suicide bombers, that Khizr and Ghazala Khan remind us of the principles that structure our republic, and that have held it together for our brief 240-year history. We are stronger together. Together, Americans have achieved the improbable.

Khizr and Ghazala Khan’s son, Captain Humayun S. M. Khan, was killed by two suicide bombers at a checkpoint north of Baghdad on June 8, 2004. In fact, suspicious of the approaching vehicle, Captain Khan ordered his men to “hit the dirt” and stay back, while he took another 10 steps forward, stopping the car. The two suicide bombers inside detonated their vests, killing Kahn and wounding 10 other U.S. soldiers. That is the definition of a hero. He put the lives of others before his own. He protected his men.

In an interview with “Vocative,” an online news source, Khizir Khan said, “Muslims are American, Muslims are citizens, Muslims participate in the well-being of this country as American citizens. . . . We are proud American citizens. It’s the values (of this country) that brought us here, not our religion. Trump’s position on these issues do not represent those values,” he said.

How ironic and beautiful that a Muslim American Citizen, an immigrant, whose story IS the American Dream, should school Donald Trump on what it means to be an American, what is means to defend the Constitution, and the equal rights it offers all citizens.

Khan continued, speaking of his son, “Values that he learned throughout his life came together and made him a brave American soldier. This country is not strong because of its economic power or military power. This country is strong because of its values, and during this political season, we all need to keep that in mind.”

Yes, we do need to keep that in mind. We also need to remember Mr. Khan’s remarks at the Democratic convention.

“If it was up to Donald Trump, (my son) never would have been in America,” Khizr Khan said. “Donald Trump consistently smears the character of Muslims. He disrespects other minorities – women, judges, even his own party leadership. He vows to build walls and ban us from this country. . . . Have you ever been to Arlington Cemetery? Go look at the graves of the brave patriots who died defending America – you will see all faiths, genders, and ethnicities. You have sacrificed nothing and no one. We can’t solve our problems by building walls and sowing division. We are stronger together.”

Boom. Mic Drop.

Read More?
http://www.vocativ.com/259159/the-father-of-a-muslim-war-hero-has-this-to-say-to-donald-trump/