Category Archives: Corporate accountability

Corporate accountability

US Supreme Court decision to uphold mandated arbitration further erodes our rights, Our day in court, “deprivation of consumers’ rights to seek redress for losses”

US Supreme Court decision to uphold mandated arbitration further erodes our rights, Our day in court, “deprivation of consumers’ rights to seek redress for losses”

“The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”…Karl Marx

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.”…Matthew 7:15

“Our right to our day in court has been severely eroded.”…Citizen Wells

 

People around me and online may try to put me in a nice neat box such as Republican.

I do not fit.

What I am is an American who adheres to the US Constitution and rule of law.

I am not against arbitration on principle. Mutually agreed to.

I am against forced, mandated arbitration which strips away one of our basic rights.

Our day in court.

From the New York Times.

“Supreme Court Upholds Workplace Arbitration Contracts Barring Class Actions

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that companies can use arbitration clauses in employment contracts to prohibit workers from banding together to take legal action over workplace issues.

The vote was 5 to 4, with the court’s more conservative justices in the majority. The court’s decision could affect some 25 million employment contracts.

Writing for the majority, Justice Neil M. Gorsuch said the court’s conclusion was dictated by a federal law favoring arbitration and the court’s precedents. If workers were allowed to band together to press their claims, he wrote, “the virtues Congress originally saw in arbitration, its speed and simplicity and inexpensiveness, would be shorn away and arbitration would wind up looking like the litigation it was meant to displace.”

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg read her dissent from the bench, a sign of profound disagreement. In her written dissent, she called the majority opinion “egregiously wrong.” In her oral statement, she said the upshot of the decision “will be huge under-enforcement of federal and state statutes designed to advance the well being of vulnerable workers.”

Justice Ginsburg called on Congress to address the matter.

Brian T. Fitzpatrick, a law professor at Vanderbilt University who studies arbitrations and class actions, said the ruling was unsurprising in light of earlier Supreme Court decisions. Justice Gorsuch, he added, “appears to have put his cards on the table as firmly in favor of allowing class actions to be stamped out through arbitration agreements.”

As a result, Professor Fitzpatrick said “it is only a matter of time until the most powerful device to hold corporations accountable for their misdeeds is lost altogether.””

“Under those contracts, Justice Ginsburg wrote, it is often not worth it and potentially dangerous to pursue small claims individually. “By joining hands in litigation, workers can spread the costs of litigation and reduce the risk of employer retaliation,” she wrote.

The contracts may also encourage misconduct, Justice Ginsburg wrote.

“Employers, aware that employees will be disinclined to pursue small-value claims when confined to proceeding one-by-one, will no doubt perceive that the cost-benefit balance of underpaying workers tips heavily in favor of skirting legal obligations,” she wrote, adding that billions of dollars in underpaid wages are at issue.

Justice Ginsburg added that requiring individual arbitrations can produce inconsistent results in similar cases, particularly because arbitrations are often confidential.”

“In a 2015 dissent, Justice Ginsburg, citing a New York Times article examining arbitration agreements, wrote that the 2011 decision and later ones “have predictably resulted in the deprivation of consumers’ rights to seek redress for losses, and, turning the coin, they have insulated powerful economic interests from liability for violations of consumer protection laws.””

Read more:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/21/business/supreme-court-upholds-workplace-arbitration-contracts.html

Having experienced the abuse of mandated arbitration first hand, I agree with Justice Ginsburg.

It may be the only time it happens, but injustice is injustice.

 

More here:

https://citizenwells.com/

http://citizenwells.net/

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AT&T handing out $200 million plus in bonuses because of GOP tax cut, Corporate tax rates cut to 21% from 35%,  Invest additional $1 billion in the US in 2018

AT&T handing out $200 million plus in bonuses because of GOP tax cut, Corporate tax rates cut to 21% from 35%,  Invest additional $1 billion in the US in 2018

“The truth is, raising the minimum wage could be just about the worst thing he could do for the jobs market. We are already 7 million jobs in the hole, 7 million fewer jobs than when the President took office. Raising the minimum wage means employers whose businesses are struggling will simply get rid of jobs. They will cut workers. According to the Heritage Foundation, the last minimum wage increase eliminated 300,000 jobs”…Gerri Willis Fox News February 13, 2013

“One of the CBO’s most intriguing estimates is that by 2017 there will be 2 million fewer full-time jobs on the market than there would have been without Obamacare, and that figure could climb to 2.5 million by 2024.”…Market Watch February 4, 2014

“Businesses do not pay for taxes and minimum wage hikes, employees and consumers do”…Citizen Wells

 

From Business Insider.

“AT&T is handing out more than $200 million in special bonuses because of the GOP tax cut”

“AT&T says it will pay a $1,000 bonus to more than 200,000 US employees after the GOP tax bill is enacted — an announcement sure to please Republican lawmakers who have been pitching corporate tax cuts as a boost for American workers.

The bill, which Congress passed this week, reduces the corporate tax rate to 21% from 35% while allowing a one-time repatriation of overseas cash. Companies are mostly expected to buy back stock or pay down debt with their savings.

Still, AT&T was quick to announce its plan after the House voted to pass the bill on Wednesday.

“Once tax reform is signed into law, AT&T plans to invest an additional $1 billion in the United States in 2018 and pay a special $1,000 bonus to more than 200,000 AT&T US employees — all union-represented, non-management and front-line managers,” the company said in a press release. “If the president signs the bill before Christmas, employees will receive the bonus over the holidays.”

At an event at the White House on Wednesday afternoon, President Donald Trump called AT&T’s plan “pretty good.”

Last month, Stephenson blasted the Department of Justice over its plans to sue to block his company’s $84.5 billion takeover of Time Warner. At the time, Stephenson called the lawsuit “unprecedented” and said it “defies logic.”

Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump blasted the AT&T-Time Warner merger, saying, “Deals like this destroy democracy.” More recently, the president said he “always felt that was a deal that’s not good for the country.””

Read more:

http://www.businessinsider.com/trump-gop-tax-reform-bill-att-announces-huge-bonuses-for-employees-2017-12

 

More here:

https://citizenwells.com/

http://citizenwells.net/

Deny & Delay tactics of disability insurance companies, Avoid paying legitimate insurance claims, No incentives to pay claims quickly, Many people who have been denied will not pursue, Good Morning America gets answers

Deny & Delay tactics of disability insurance companies, Avoid paying legitimate insurance claims, No incentives to pay claims quickly, Many people who have been denied will not pursue, Good Morning America gets answers

“A San Diego woman says she has been kicked off her insurance plan due to Obamacare while battling Stage 4 gallbladder cancer.

“I had great cancer doctors and health insurance,” Edie Littlefield Sundby wrote in a Sunday Wall Street Journal op-ed. “My plan was canceled. Now I worry how long I’ll live.”

“For almost seven years I have fought and survived Stage 4 gallbladder cancer, with a five-year survival rate of less than 2 percent after diagnosis,” she said.

Her op-ed, which received significant attention from conservatives online, comes as millions of Americans are being dropped from their health insurance plans because of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s signature health care law.

Sundby will be released from her current plan effective Dec. 31. She said her only options going forward are to either enroll in Obamacare and lose her cancer doctors, or to start her treatment all over again with a new provider at rates that are approximately 40 to 50 percent more expensive.

Worse than just losing her doctors through Obamacare, Sundby said, is that nothing available through the government-run program comes even close to comparing with what she had through her private insurer.”…The Blaze November 4, 2013

“Insurance Companies Practice Deny & Delay Tactics”…The Deutermann Law Group

I started Citizen Wells early in 2008 to write about injustice, things that bothered me.

I had no idea then it would evolve into more of a “political animal” and cover in depth Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton as well as a host of others.

I did so out of necessity, love of country, a real concern about what could happen and for my grandkids and descendants.

Little did I know then that a great injustice would happen to me a year later that would drastically affect my life and fortunes.

I had all of the insurance in place.

Health
Life
Dental
Disability

I paid on the private disability policy for 25 years hoping, believing that I would never need to rely on it.

That’s the way it works, right?

No one following this site is aware of what happened to me. For several reasons.

What was happening to this country at the time was more important and because my case was ongoing. It still is.

Over time I will explain my ordeal and how it transpired to the extent I will be legally able to.

But first some background on disability and other insurance companies and how they are treating people.

Anyone watching daytime local tv will notice the high volume of attorney ads offering representation to people who have been wronged by companies, insurance firms and Social Security Disability.

There is obviously a problem.

From the Deuterman Law Group.

“Good Morning America has a story that illustrates how insurance companies use deny and delay tactics to avoid paying legitimate insurance claims.

In this case, a woman with Stage 4 breast cancer tried to collect disability insurance. But Cigna repeatedly denied Susan Kristoff’s claim for short-term disability.

Cigna said she had not proven a disability. Sick and with bills piled up, Kristoff says she considered something drastic.

“If I wasn’t going to be getting better, I didn’t want to sink the rest of my family, so I spent two days in bed crying and thinking about suicide,” she said.

Instead Kristoff hired an attorney. In short order, Cigna reversed course and paid her short-term benefits. Then with her lawyer’s help, she applied for the much more important long-term help.

Several people that GMA interviewed for the story about Kristoff said insurance companies have no incentives to pay claims quickly. In fact, it’s in their best interest to deny and delay claims because many people who have been denied will not pursue things.”

http://deutermanlaw.com/insurance_companies_practice_deny_delay_tactics/

From ABC Good Morning America.

“GMA Gets Answers: Insurer Delays Long-Term Benefit Coverage”

“Kristoff was working at Yellow Book selling advertising 1½ years ago. The job entailed lugging the heavy books to meetings with potential clients. It was a job she loved, until one day a visit to the doctor brought terrible news.

She was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, and it was spreading throughout her body.

“It was awful, and I was extremely tired — limping, sharp pain,” Kristoff said.

Doctors said there was no way she could do her sales job anymore. The cancer had actually eaten holes through her hips. Her company had no other position to offer her, so Kristoff filed a claim for disability insurance.

Like millions of Americans, she paid a small amount each month — $20 in her case — to cover her financially should she be unable to work. One-third of Americans have some form of disability insurance.

For Kristoff, paying Cigna for disability insurance was the easy part. Collecting the insurance was a different story.

“It was a daily, eight-hour job just trying to fulfill the information that Cigna was requesting,” she said. “And it wasn’t once. It would be over and over again.”

But after five months of submitting forms, Cigna denied Kristoff’s claim for short-term disability. Cigna said she had not proven a disability. Sick and with bills piled up, Kristoff says she considered something drastic.

“If I wasn’t going to be getting better, I didn’t want to sink the rest of my family, so I spent two days in bed crying and thinking about suicide,” she said.

Instead Kristoff hired an attorney. In short order, Cigna reversed course and paid her short-term benefits. Then with her lawyer’s help, she applied for the much more important long-term help.

Delay Tactics

Her policy promised to pay her 60 percent of her salary if she was too disabled to work.

This time Cigna raised a different objection, saying because Kristoff had a different form of cancer two years before she was diagnosed with the breast cancer that had metastasized, she did not qualify for disability. Doctors say the two cancers are unrelated, and she had been diagnosed as cancer-free well before she began her new job.

“I’m appalled, I’m disgusted, but I’m not surprised because there are hundreds of Susans, many of which I’m representing currently,” said Kristoff’s attorney, Alicia Paulino Grisham.

Grisham says she’s seen this tactic before and it’s called “slow walking.”

“The insurance companies understand that if they deny and deny claims, then many of the claimants will never pursue their claim,” Grisham said.”

“”Delay tactics are a killer in this situation — it’s, ‘How do I pay for gas? How do I pay for food? Where’s my day-to-day money? I’m caught up for weeks, months, over a year,'” Cuomo said.

Pisano replied, “I think that it’s a balance. The people who framed this law tried to strike a balance, giving every opportunity to make the case, for there to be a fair and thorough review.”

Finally, Some Good News

“GMA” got involved in Kristoff’s case as she was awaiting the results of yet another appeal.

It had been 1½ years since her cancer diagnosis, but shortly after “GMA” called Cigna on her behalf, Kristoff got some good news.

Cigna announced that based on “additional information … her disability benefits would be covered ” after all.”

Read more:

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=4724106&page=1

You will be shocked when you find out what happened to me.

I am one of the lucky ones. I had assets and support but it still destroyed my finances and I am still in pain.

More to come.

Wells

 

More here:

https://citizenwells.com/

http://citizenwells.net/

 

CBS smear conspiracy, CBS Anchorage affiliate KTVA, Conspiracy to create Joe Miller child molestor story

CBS smear conspiracy, CBS Anchorage affiliate KTVA, Conspiracy to create Joe Miller child molestor story

“Not every item of news should be published: rather must
those who control news policies endeavor to make every item
of news serve a certain purpose.”…. Joseph Goebbels

When you pick up your morning or evening newspaper and think
you are reading the news of the world, what you are reading
is a propaganda which has been selected, revised, and doctored
by some power which has a financial interest in you.”…. Upton Sinclair

To the far left and the far left mainstream media, the end justifies the means.

From Big Journalism October 30, 2010.

“The following voice mail message was inadvertently left on the cell phone of Joe Miller campaign spokesperson Randy DeSoto.

The voices are believed to be those of the news director for CBS Anchorage affiliate KTVA, along with assignment editor Nick McDermott, and other reporters, openly discussing creating, if not fabricating, two stories about Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, Joe Miller.

The following is a transcript of a call recorded after CBS Alaska affiliate KTVA called Joe Miller’s Senate campaign spokesperson. The call failed to disconnect properly. It was later authenticated by McDermott, who sent a text to Randy DeSoto stating, “Damn iPhone… I left you a long message. I thought I hung up. Sorry.””

Read more:

http://bigjournalism.com/pjsalvatore/2010/10/30/anchorage-cbs-affiliate-caught-on-voicemail-conspiring-against-alaskas-gop-senate-candidate/

From the transcript proivided by Big Journalism.

“FEMALE REPORTER: That’s up to you because you have the
experience but that’s what I would do…I’d wait until you see who
shows up because that indicates we already know something…
[Laughter
[INAUDIBLE]
FEMALE REPORTER: Child molesters…
MALE REPORTER: Oh yes…Joe Miller’s…uh…get a list of
people/campaign workers which one’s the molester
[INAUDIBLE]
FEMALE VOICE: You know that of all the people that will show up
tonight, at least one of them will be a registered sex offender.”

Thanks to commenters for info.

Blagojevich trial delayed, Retrial April 2011, Chicago Tribune feedback, Citizen Wells open thread, October 25, 2010

Blagojevich trial delayed, Retrial April 2011, Chicago Tribune feedback

From the Chicago Tribune.

“A federal judge agreed Friday to delay former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s retrial until April to give his defense team — down to just two lawyers — more time to prepare.

U.S. District Judge James Zagel, who had tentatively planned for the retrial to begin in early January, postponed its start until April 20.

Prosecutors objected to the delay, pointing out that Blagojevich’s two remaining attorneys took part in the first trial. “The faulty premise is that they are starting from scratch,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Reid Schar.

But the defense said the two will have to take on much heavier roles in the retrial.”

Read more:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/blagojevich/ct-met-blagojevich-trial-delayed-20101022,0,794409.story

From the Chicago Tribune.

“Those of us who work for the Chicago Tribune speak with our readers every day. That conversation survives on our credibility and your trust. We understand the humbling truth that neither of those is assured.

Today we need to talk with you about painful developments that have threatened that credibility, that trust.

On Oct. 6, The New York Times reported that the Tribune Co. had been engulfed by “a culture run amok.””

“Much of the New York Times story was disturbing, but one passage particularly troubled us: It called into question the independence of the newsroom and this editorial board.

In June 2008, according to the story, Tribune Co. Chairman Sam Zell approached then-Editor Ann Marie Lipinski at a meeting, “saying that the Chicago Tribune should be harder on Gov. Rod Blagojevich. … In a news meeting later the same day, she found out that Mr. Zell was in negotiations to sell Wrigley Field to the state sports authority.” Lipinski says, “It was hard to avoid the conclusion that he was trying to use the newspaper to put pressure on Blagojevich.””

“Blagojevich was arrested in December 2008. Among the charges: that he sought to pressure Tribune Co. to fire members of the Chicago Tribune editorial board. Tribune editorials had been discussing the governor’s removal from office since October 2007. At the time of his arrest, the Tribune reported that negotiations on Wrigley Field had resumed shortly after the company had rejected the state’s offer.”

“Zell has denied that he sought to use the newspaper for business purposes. No one from the editorial board was present for the conversation between Zell and Lipinski. We can, however, say with certainty that Tribune Co. executives — from Zell on down — have never tried to influence this editorial board. Their approach has been completely hands-off. Completely. They have had no impact whatsoever on our Blagojevich editorials. We realize that we cannot prove a negative. All we can do is tell you the truth and ask you to believe us.”

Read more:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-tribune1-20101022,0,1392448.story

The Chicago Tribune has done a decent and sometimes excellent job of covering Rod Blagojevich. They can be faulted, along with the rest of the mainstream media for not covering the complete Obama stories.

The rest of the story.

Obama oil spill panel, Blame Americans?, Obama administration, Interior Department, Ken Salazar, Open thread, June 21, 2010

Obama oil spill panel, Blame Americans?, Obama administration, Interior Department

The Blagojevich trial continues today. Ali Ata should continue his testimony.

Obama has appointed a panel to investigate the Gulf Oil Disaster. Already the inclination of Obama and some panel members to blame Americans for “America’s addiction to oil” is surfacing. Clearly the federal government, the Obama Administration, Ken Salazar and the Interior Department share some of the blame for this environmental and human disaster. Read more at Citizen News.

https://citizenwells.com/category/general/gulf-oil-disaster-general/

To blame Americans for consuming energy is absurd and illogical. If I point my finger at myself and the rest of the country for anything it would be for not insisting many years ago that we develop a energy policy and effort on par with the moon program, to develop alternative energy and energy independence.

The Barack Obama Documentary, Larry Sinclair allegations.

http://barackobamadocumentary.com/

Thanks Zach.

US economy slowdown, Economy cooling, Financial markets, Corporate forecasts, Soft retail sales, Rise in jobless claims

US economy slowdown, Economy cooling, Financial markets, Corporate forecasts

From Daily Finance May 22, 2010.

“Forget Europe: Signs of a Slowdown in the U.S.”
“Financial markets around the world are fixated on Europe as it grapples with its debt woes. Though probably overdone, investor paranoia is understandable. The fallout for the global economy would be massive if things spiraled out of control, unlikely as that may seem for the moment.

While potentially catastrophic developments overseas may be captivating, investors would do well to stay focused on more subtle developments in the U.S. Much of Wall Street remains bullish on the prospects of an economic recovery, but some signs suggest that a slowdown may be materializing nonetheless.

Watch Corporate Guidance and Economic Indicators

Hosted software provider Salesforce.com (CRM) is the latest company to report strong results for the first quarter but provide a forecast that couldn’t live up to Wall Street’s expectations. On Thursday, the company said it expected earnings per share of between $1.13 and $1.15 for the full year. That was well below the $1.28 analysts had forecast, and shares tumbled in trading after hours.

The results from Salesforce.com mirror those of networking giant Cisco (CSCO) last week. While Cisco delivered a strong first quarter, shares were initially hammered based on a lackluster outlook for the rest of the year. Hardware giant Dell (DELL) also came under fire as concerns about its ability to maintain profits grew despite solid results for the first quarter.

A slew of retailers including Lowe’s (LOW), Home Depot (HD) and Wal-Mart (WMT) have also provided skimpy guidance for the rest of the year. And while companies may well be trying to game Wall Street by setting the bar low only to dazzle later, recent economic data suggests that the economy could also be slowing after a sharp rebound in demand from depressed lows.

A set of closely watched indicators released Thursday by the Conference Board showed that the economy may be cooling as it heads into the second half of the year. Those findings echo leading indicators monitored by the Economic Cycle Research Institute, which noted that “the pace of improvement in the overall economy is set to slacken in the months ahead” as measures fell to a 40-week low.

Soft retail sales and a sudden rise in jobless claims have contributed to the darkening picture.”

Read more:

http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/investing/forget-europe-signs-of-a-slowdown-in-the-u-s/19487132/