Blue Cross Blue Shield, Anthem - WellPoint

Anthem, and of course, the daddy company WellPoint. There has just been so much news about them lately, the huge rate increases and on and on. It can make you so tired that you just want to find a nice place to relax. For a week or so. Maybe, at the Phoenician Hotel in Scottsdate, Arizona. The great looking pool with fountain and the mountains in the distance.
Nah, you know, I'm thinking more like the islands. More like Manele Bay, Hawaii, at the Four Seasons Resort. I'm sure the view from the pool overlooking the ocean is spectacular - I've seen pictures - but nah. San Diego. Beautiful city, lots of attractions, great winter weather - The Four Seasons Resort in San Diego has my vote.

Why am I even considering these fantastic resorts? 'Cause these are WellPoint Executive Retreats. Now I know I'm not an executive, or guest of an exective - yet, but my local union did sign us up for Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield membership effective March 1, 2010. And WellPoint is the parent company so, the resort invite is in the mail.

$947,350.16 - Blue Cross Blue Shield (part-time?) Job

Not bad work if you can get it. Vincent J GIBLIN, General President, International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE), got it. $947,350.16 in only 5 years worth of, got it. What was GIBLIN'S compensation prior to 2004?

GIBLIN served as Chairman of the Board of Blue Cross Blue Shield (Horizon of New Jersey), for fifteen (15) years. Dept of Labor reports for 5 of those years, 2004 thru 2008 inclusive, GIBLIN reported on DOL form LM-30 [use filer number 05710] that he received a total of $947,350.16 in compensation. What's an LM-30 form? "The purpose of the form, among others, is to identify potential conflicts of interest between the labor organization officials and their labor organization".

During the same 15 years, GIBLIN served in various (full-time?) IUOE capacities including General President, General Secretary-Treasurer and Local 68 Business Manager. If Local 68, Operating Engineers sounds familiar, read about another GIBLIN, Dennis Giblin, in "Union Leader Arrested", also on

Pop the cork on the $275,000 bottle of 1907 Heidsieck - 'cause during the same five (5) year period, GIBLIN claimed $1,840,178 in total compensation from the International Union of Operating Engineers - DOL LM-2 [file number 000-159].

So, the 5 year total is..... $2,787,528.16 of reported compensation. What the @%$*&! I need a nap just so I can dream about popping the top of bottle of soda.

Union Leader Arrested - for supporting union members??

What? Richard L Trumpka, president of the AFL-CIO was arrested during a hotel worker's protest? The Los Angeles Times reported on January 8, 2010 "Earlier this week, he was among those briefly arrested during a noisy protest outside a San Francisco Hilton, where management is enmeshed in difficult negotiations with the hotel workers union".

Compare and contrast Trumpka's actions and arrest in support of the union workers, with those of Operating Engineers, Local 68, President, and Administrator of the Local 68 Education Fund, Dennis J Giblin. Mr. Giblin was arrested January 21, 2009, on a criminal Complaint charging him with receiving kickbacks and embezzling from the Local 68 education fund, Acting U.S. Attorney Ralph J. Marra, Jr. announced.

ANONYMOUS - A Proud American Tradition

Who wins when individuals challenge the ruling class. When they exercise their natural rights to free speech. When they ask questions and get ridiculed, mocked and threatened. When they are retaliated against by having their livelihood taken from them. Shouldn't "Common Sense" prevail as it did in Thomas Paine's vivid defense of liberty through the use of pamphleteering.

What conditions compelled so many of America's founding fathers and ordinary citizens to write thousands upon thousands of pamphlets that were sold and distributed throughout the colonies. "It was in this form - as pamphlets - that much of the most important and characteristic writing of the American Revolution appeared," writes Harvard University historian Bernard Bailyn. American patriots opposed attempts to require anonymous authors to reveal their identities. They needed the freedom to express themselves without fear of retaliation from King George III of England.

Many of the essays in the Federalist Papers were published under the name "Publius". Who shared this pen name? John Jay, James Madison and Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton is also known to have written several newspaper essays under the veil of anonymity using a variety of names taken from characters from ancient Rome. "Candidus" a name used by Baptist minister Benjamin Austin, also authored some of the Federalist Papers. Ever hear these names from your American history classes: "Silence Dogood," "the Busy-Body," "Obadiah Plainman," "Robin Good-fellow," "Richard Saunders," and of course, "Poor Richard" as in "Poor Richard's Almanack." These were pseudonyms of American patriot Benjamin Franklin. Our second President of the United States, John Adams, often used the pseudonym (just another name for anonymous) "Novanglus" and "Clarendan.

Early American patriots were fearful of arrest and punishment as severe as death. Today's American patriots who choose to speak out anonymously, are doing so out of fear of a darker more contemptuous punishment, being starved to death by the modern King George III's, who are often times their employer or union.

And what of the Anonymous today? They fear for their family, their jobs, their homes, their friends and co-workers. That's a lot to put at risk as our founding fathers fully recognized.

Comment on your King George, on this blog. And if you choose, do it in the American tradition of our founding fathers, anonymously.

Guys. Too much time on your hands at work?

CNN reports, Inventor Douglas Hines is a self-professed happily married man who says, after trying to find a marketable application for his artificial-intelligence technology, he developed Roxxxy. Personally I'm impressed that Roxxxy's battery lasts longer than a notebook's. Downside - technology. Nuff said.

And guys (no sexism intended), if you're considering buying one for the office, two suggestions: 1 use your skills at burying the $7,000 expense, and 2 Make sure you turn off the snoring feature when you got her tucked away in the coat closet for her re-charging...err...nap.

Humm, maybe if she could surf the internet...

Anthem Blue Cross 39% rate increase for 2010 makes headlines

Considering changing your health care provider? Rachel Maddow (MSNBC) last night spoke of Anthem Blue Cross of California customers facing huge rate hikes of 39% this year. This of course is much better than the 68% they faced last year. In Michigan, Blue Cross Blue Shield asked for a 56% rate hike but settled for a 22% average slamming. Whew, that could have been devastating to the individual subscribers. And in November 2009, reported of Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota "In September, the company was charged with misusing $23,000,000 in premium dollars." What are the Anthem rates in your state?

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Operating Engineers local 139 show Interest in

Thank you Operating Engineers local 139, for showing so much recent interest in In fact, someone(s) who had access to local 139's online internet connection, for over 2 hour and 46 minute period worth of interest in ----------during working hours? The visits, about 40 pages, happened from about 1:30 to 4:15 pm on Monday, February 8, 2010. Is that during working hours?

But it gets better. Operating Engineers, local 139, Pewaukee, WI attorneys, Baum & Sigman, made multiple visits to Feb 4, Feb 5, and twice on Feb 8. To the guys and gals at the Chicago law firm of Baum & Sigman, thanks for your support, or at least interest in and the rank and file members in good standing of Operating Engineers, local 139, Pewaukee, WI.

I guess there's interest in a blog where Bill Maher and abusive relationships are found in the same sentence, in the same video.

Bill Maher - Ending your abusive relationship

Millions and millions are stuck in abusive relationships. Bill Maher promotes creative solution.