CEO greed. Benign or not? - ColoradoCare Amendment69
Posted: 24 September 2016 09:27 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Past couple weeks I’ve been learning all sorts of shocking stuff about health care systems and insurance company dirty dealings. I’ll admit, it had been the least of my interests, but life is full of surprises.  Partly because of a personal experience, partly because of a flippant letter to the editor of a local paper by a mighty CEO and all I learned since I started checking his claims, I’ve become an active advocate for ColoradoCare and a YES vote on Amendment 69.

I heard an interesting argument that some around here might like to kick around a little, thus I’m sharing it.

This particular argument started with an article by Wendell Potter bemoaning extravagant and increasing CEO compensation packages. 
Rising to Wendell’s challenge Chris Conover over at Forbes wrote an article sharing an epiphany.  
He takes CEO pay and divides it by all the employees, presto, see there CEOs aren’t milking anyone. 
It’s a great fantasy argument and I’m sure his math holds.  But …

Conover deftly skips over the reason for the outrage at health insurance company executives with his little math trick.
I’ll let them tell it, then I’m going to toss in my two cents worth and invite anyone to join in.

First Mr. Potter:

Skyrocketing Salaries for Health Insurance CEOs 
By Wendell Potter, Center for Public Integrity | Commentary | June 10, 2014 
http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/24280-skyrocketing-salaries-for-health-insurance-ceos 

If health insurance companies announce big premium increases on policies for 2015, I hope regulators, lawmakers and the media will look closely at
whether they are justified, especially in light of recent disclosures of better-than-expected profits in 2013, rosy outlooks for the rest of this year and
soaring CEO compensation.

Almost all of the publicly traded health insurers reported big increases in revenue and profits last year. The big winners have been the top executives
of those companies, led by Mark Bertolini, CEO of Aetna, the nation’s third largest health insurer. Bertolini’s total compensation of $30.7 million in
2013 was 131 percent higher than in 2012. …

Mr. Conover’s response over at Forbes:

What If We Confiscated CEO Compensation For Large Health Insurers And Redistributed It To Members? 
Chris Conover | March 31, 2016
http://www.forbes.com/sites/theapothecary/2016/03/31/what-if-we-confiscated-the-compensation-for-large-health-insurers-and-redistributed-it-to-members/#7a28765c7f01

Last month, AEI’s Mark Perry posted an interesting hypothetical: What if the compensation for all S&P 500 CEOs were confiscated and redistributed to rank-and-file workers?  [1] It turns out that this redistribution would lift average worker pay by 3 cents an hour–truly peanuts in a world in which the average American worker earns more than $25 per hour.{*} 

In light of the persistent low opinion that many Americans and policymakers seem to have about “greedy health insurers” and “ skyrocketing salaries for health insurance CEOs,” I thought it would be interesting to conduct a parallel exercise for the nation’s very largest health insurers. How much money might the average plan member save if only we could confiscate the allegedly “eye-popping” (former industry “insider” Wendell Potter’s characterization) CEO compensation paid to executives of the nation’s largest health insurers? 
The answer? Peanuts.  …

Mr Conover misses the point.  It’s not about redistributing those dollars among the tens of thousands of workers out there.  
It’s about distributing that money back into the healthcare system and making health care job one.  Something that is decidedly
not the case under our current self-interested corporate leadership and the awful system they have created for us.  

There’s more to this than objection to that sense of entitlement among corporate executes. 
There’s the problem of how they manage to justify those excessive bonus packages.  

They justify them by squeezing every ounce of profit, no matter how amoral the means of achieving those savings and extra profits, out of their systems.

Let me spell it out: It’s the absolutely self-interested and amoral corporate mentality that’s problem one! 

Their profits obsessed CEO mind-set is killing us down here.  

We object not just to executive’s obscene incomes but to their entire myopic self-interested approach to health care!  

That’s why so many are working to get Colorado’s ColoradoCare Amendment 69 passed. 
Yes it is a “socialist” plan in a sense.  So what?  After all, we humans are social animals, so get over it!  

We The People have the right to demand that the money we spend on health care goes into providing quality compassionate healthy care -
and not paying for minds that are constantly scheming on how to take more for themselves.

{As for that $25.00/hr average pay rate.  In your dreams.  Sure, it holds for a select segment, but the bigger picture isn’t near as rosy. 
For those details visit http://amendment69-info-kiosk.blogspot.com/2016/09/response-to-cconovers-response-to.html}

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Posted: 27 September 2016 02:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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According to Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/pictures/eggh45jef/highest-paid-bosses/#15fa59267ef6), “The CEOs of America’s 500 biggest companies got a collective pay raise of 16% last year earning total compensation of $5.2 billion. That’s an average $10.5 million apiece.

According to http://www.dlt.ri.gov/lmi/laus/us/usadj.htm, there are nearly 160 million Americans in the workforce.

I found the following data at http://www.joshuakennon.com/how-many-people-earn-more-than-1000000-per-year-in-the-united-states/...
According to a Wall Street Journal article published on October 25th, 2011 called The Wild Ride of the 1%, in 2007, before the Great Recession, there were nearly 400,000 individuals earning $1,000,000 or more in the United States.

Here are more Forbes tidbits found at http://www.forbes.com/sites/moneywisewomen/2012/03/21/average-america-vs-the-one-percent/#4f09d2ca11a8
-”The average annual income of the top 1 percent of the population is $717,000, compared to the average income of the rest of the population, which is around $51,000. The real disparity between the classes isn’t in income, however, but in net value: The 1 percent are worth about $8.4 million, or 70 times the worth of the lower classes.
-”Altogether, the top 1 percent control 43 percent of the wealth in the nation; the next 4 percent control an additional 29 percent.
-”The average worker in an American company makes substantially less than supervisors and executives. In fact, corporate executives make 62 times more money than an average worker in bonuses alone, not counting the executive’s actual salary. For every corporate bonus, the company could have paid 62 employees.

So, although his math holds, I’m [not] sorry to inform Chris Conover that instead of looking at only the 500 wealthiest, if he instead looked at the accumulated wealth of the top 5%, he would realize how ignorant and insulting his statistical games are. 

I don’t begrudge anyone the rewards of hard work and initiative and good ideas, but contrary to Mr. Conover, not at the expense of my fellow humans!

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Posted: 27 September 2016 05:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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3point14rat - 27 September 2016 02:35 PM

According to Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/pictures/eggh45jef/highest-paid-bosses/#15fa59267ef6), “The CEOs of America’s 500 biggest companies got a collective pay raise of 16% last year earning total compensation of $5.2 billion. That’s an average $10.5 million apiece.

According to http://www.dlt.ri.gov/lmi/laus/us/usadj.htm, there are nearly 160 million Americans in the workforce.

I found the following data at http://www.joshuakennon.com/how-many-people-earn-more-than-1000000-per-year-in-the-united-states/...
According to a Wall Street Journal article published on October 25th, 2011 called The Wild Ride of the 1%, in 2007, before the Great Recession, there were nearly 400,000 individuals earning $1,000,000 or more in the United States.

Here are more Forbes tidbits found at http://www.forbes.com/sites/moneywisewomen/2012/03/21/average-america-vs-the-one-percent/#4f09d2ca11a8
-”The average annual income of the top 1 percent of the population is $717,000, compared to the average income of the rest of the population, which is around $51,000. The real disparity between the classes isn’t in income, however, but in net value: The 1 percent are worth about $8.4 million, or 70 times the worth of the lower classes.
-”Altogether, the top 1 percent control 43 percent of the wealth in the nation; the next 4 percent control an additional 29 percent.
-”The average worker in an American company makes substantially less than supervisors and executives. In fact, corporate executives make 62 times more money than an average worker in bonuses alone, not counting the executive’s actual salary. For every corporate bonus, the company could have paid 62 employees.

So, although his math holds, I’m [not] sorry to inform Chris Conover that instead of looking at only the 500 wealthiest, if he instead looked at the accumulated wealth of the top 5%, he would realize how ignorant and insulting his statistical games are. 

I don’t begrudge anyone the rewards of hard work and initiative and good ideas, but contrary to Mr. Conover, not at the expense of my fellow humans!

I wonder what percentage of these CEO’s have law degrees.

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