Report: Bonuses paid for dropping sick patients

A health insurance company serving customers in a half-dozen states set out to drop hundreds of customers and paid lucrative bonuses to an executive in charge of eliminating coverage. One customer is suing the company, Health Net Inc., after a company salesman pressured her to switch to a Health Net plan only for the company […]

Doctor, doctor: How can you justify a 10% pay increase

According to John Key Doctors prices would level out and the market would determine the price doctors could charge for a consult when the consult fees would be up to the doctors. I wonder if this is what John Key had in mind? GPs’ salaries soar to £110,000 despite promises of more money for patients By […]

I Don’t Think That’s What They Mean By “Golden Opportunity”

Would you like your parents to be taken care of by the Carlyle group? A caravan of over 200 healthcare workers organized by the SEIU arrived in Washington DC today to demonstrate outside the Carlyle Group headquarters. What does that have to do with Jeralyn Merritt’s mom? Jeralyn’s mom lives in a Manor Care facility. […]

Children’s homes hit by buyout fears

John Key and National anyone ? Concern at private equity’s role in social services Nick Mathiason, business correspondent Sunday October 14, 2007 The Observer The collapse of a private equity-backed care home dealing with sexually abused and autistic children has sparked renewed concern at the advance of financial buyers into British public services. Sedgmoor, owned by […]

‘Catastrophic failure’ warning on Harbour Bridge

Auckland Harbour Bridge has been at risk of “catastrophic failure”, says an official report that undermines earlier assurances that the bridge’s wear and tear poses no major safety problems. Herald on Sunday inquiries have uncovered an official engineer’s report, written less than a year ago, which says the risk of damage from heavy traffic loads […]

The selling off of Canada. Will we bemoan the selling of of New Zealand when National starts to sell our assets.

At what point does Canada become a toy country? In August, the last of the major Canadian steel makers was sold to United States Steel Corporation for $1.1 billion. Earlier, Dofasco was sold to a European company which has since been swallowed up by Mittal Steel Co. of India. This latest foreign takeover is just […]

In this age of diamond saucepans, only a recession makes sense

Economic growth is a political sedative, snuffing out protest as it drives inequality. It is time we gave it up George Monbiot Tuesday October 9, 2007 The Guardian If you are of a sensitive disposition, I advise you to turn the page now. I am about to break the last of the universal taboos. I […]

The Worst Recession in 25 years?

By Robert P. Murphy Posted on 10/1/2007 [Subscribe or Tell Others] << Previous Story | Index | Next Story >> On September 18 the Fed cut its target for the fed funds rate by 50 basis points (0.5 percentage points), from 5.25% to 4.75%. The move surprised many analysts who had been expecting a more […]

Corporate plan for classrooms

A multinational company specialising in public-private partnerships (PPPs) could become a school landlord under National’s education plans. Yesterday, National unveiled more detail on its education policy after The Weekend Press revealed the party was planning to pump more money into private schools and allow the private sector to build and own state schools. The story […]

Mortgages cause sleepless nights for homeowners

Home owners are becoming increasingly uneasy about keeping up with their mortgage repayments, a Research New Zealand survey says. The poll found home loan interest rates were a concern for 68 per cent of those with mortgages. The survey of social attitudes asked those with home loans if they were concerned that rising mortgage interest […]

Corn-to-Ethanol: US Agribusiness Magic Path To A World Food Monopoly

by Charles E. Carlson Global Research, September 29, 2007 Eight years of Biofuels (ethanol) policy and legislation has cemented in place the first world wide food cabal, which promises a humanitarian disaster, a famine more serious than those caused by any tsunami, earthquake or drought. This crisis is not in the dim future, it is […]

US Economy Headed for Recession as Housing Bubble Bursts

Posted by Dr. Kurt Richebacher on Sep 14th, 2007 “America’s income-short, consumer-led recovery is the aberration – not the norm – in this Brave New World. It is all about ever-declining saving rates, ever-widening current account deficits, mounting debt burdens and increasingly wealth-dependent consumers. It personifies what I believe is one of the most precarious […]

Fed can’t stop recession

Even if the central bank starts to cut rates aggressively, many of the risks for the U.S. economy are beyond its reach. By Chris Isidore, CNNMoney.com senior writer September 13 2007: 1:35 PM EDT NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Problems in housing, the financial markets and the first job decline in four years have made a […]

Retirement Funds Vanish as Bankruptcies Hit Tax-Deferred Scheme

By Erik Larson Sept. 11 (Bloomberg) — Marsha Slotten’s bad news came in April by e-mail, from a tipster warning that the company holding her retirement nest egg had collapsed. After racing in a panic to the office of Southwest Exchange Inc. outside Las Vegas, she found a locked door and a sign saying the […]

NZ Super Fund just grows and grows

By Graeme Hunt Adrian Orr says the fund is committed to ‘responsible investment’. Photo / Paul Estcourt It’s less than four years since the country’s most unusual Crown entity started investing with $2.4 billion of Government money. It received a further $7.7 billion from the state along the way and now has a fund worth […]

GAO report: Medicare not doing enough insurer audits

Private insurance companies participating in Medicare have been allowed to keep tens of millions of dollars that should have gone to consumers, and the Bush administration did not properly audit the companies or try to recover money paid in error, congressional investigators say in a new report. The investigators, from the Government Accountability Office, said […]

Warning issued on Geneva Finance

By DAVID HARGREAVES – Fairfax Media | Tuesday, 11 September 2007Auckland-based consumer finance company Geneva Finance faces a possible future downgrade of its credit rating because of “increasing pressure” on its liquidity and funding, international credit ratings agency Standard & Poor’s said today. “We believe that there is a possibility that current financial market disruptions […]

American Economy: R.I.P.

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions. A lifelong Republican.  By Paul Craig Roberts 09/10/07 “ICH’ — — The US economy continues its […]

Is China Dumping the U.S. Dollar?

September 10, 2007 | From theTrumpet.com Questions loom whether China is behind recent dollar sales—if it is, America’s way of life is about to change. The only question is how badly and how fast. By Robert MorleyThe U.S. dollar is standing at the edge of a cliff, and most people don’t even know it. Data […]

The selling off of Canada

By MICHAEL HARRISAt what point does Canada become a toy country? In August, the last of the major Canadian steel makers was sold to United States Steel Corporation for $1.1 billion. Earlier, Dofasco was sold to a European company which has since been swallowed up by Mittal Steel Co. of India. This latest foreign takeover […]

Communities Take Power

by Doug Pibel The Citizens of Barnstead, New Hampshire, Used Local Law to Keep Corporate Giants Out of Their Water Gail Darrell, center, and other Barnstead, New Hampshire, residents pressed for a law to counter the “tyranny and usurpation” of the people’s right to govern themselves, especially with regard to water. Gordon Preston, left, and […]

U.S. Stock Market Falls on Employment & Housing Data

Posted by Kate Incontrera on Sep 6th, 2007 The Dow, the S&P and the NASDAQ all suffered their first losses in three days at market open this morning.The drop was caused by not-so-good employment and housing data, and on the news that short-term interest rates in Europe rose to the highest since January 2001. Although […]

Key pledges to improve funding for private-sector care of the elderly

The National Party says funding for care of the elderly is inadequate, and it proposes regular increases in payments and more partnerships with the private sector. National leader John Key outlined proposals in a speech to the Health Care Providers Conference in Rotorua yesterday. He said New Zealand’s ageing population meant the private sector would […]

Privatise jails and cut frills: report

By Claire Trevett  An independent report recommends ways to cut costs in NZ prisons. Photo / Derek Flynn Less pretty landscaping, having prisoners share toilets and privatisation of prisons are among solutions an independent report has given to building cheaper prisons. An independent report into how the Government could save money when building prisons says […]

USA 1984 has arrived

Big Brother USA: Surveillance Via “Tagging, Tracking, and Locating” The Militarization of U.S. Public Service Agencies by Laurel Federbush Global Research, September 3, 2007 According to the 2005 Strategy for Homeland Defense and Civil Support, “the terrorist enemy now considers the US homeland a preeminent part of the global theater of combat, and so must […]

Globalisation: Free Trade Needs Rules, Not the World Bank

Posted by Bill Bonner on Sep 3rd, 2007 We’ve talked quite a bit about ‘fat tails’ in these pages…about events that lie so far outside the normal course of events that we tend to push them equally far away in our consciousness, events that are so devastating that when they do occur they cancel out […]

Fed warns of $100bn credit losses

  Ben Bernanke’s comments are closely watched Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke has warned that the crisis in the US sub-prime lending market could cost up to $100bn.In a second day of testimony to Congress, Mr Bernanke said credit losses associated with sub-prime mortgage failures were “significant”. Wall Street is nervous about the exposure of […]

The Real Cost of a Picket White Fence: 3 Housing Factors to Think About; Prices set at the margin, income discrepancies, and bubble euphoria.

After drinking water out of the bailout fire hydrant, I think most people are scrambling to get an idea of what is happening. An issue placed on the back burner by many politicians is suddenly garnering massive media playtime. Amazingly, Americans in a large percentage are against any bailout talks or consideration. The nationwide MSNBC […]

Who Will Rule?

by Michael Marx and Marjorie Kelly Citizen movements are proving that we can take on corporate power, and together build a future that works for all life. Illustration by Don Baker for YES! Magazine. Corporate power lies behind nearly every major problem we face—from stagnant wages and unaffordable health care to overconsumption and global warming. […]