Aetna's CEO, Mark Bertolini, is a man who feels entitled. His team lost the election, but he;s not going to let the votes of a lot of "little people" get in the way of demanding the Federal Government do what he wants or else, in his own words,
"The American people are going to suffer because we'll lay them off--because we know how to respond to these kinds of situations," Mr. Bertolini warned at a Wall Street Journal CEO Council event.
Yes, that's right, one of the highest compensated chief executives in the country, is threatening to make you suffer unless he gets a deal that eliminates tax increases of roughly 3% on the income of people who earn over $250,000 a year. Oh and he also wants to delay (if not eliminate) implementation of the provisions of affordable care act.
You can read all the nitty-gritty details regarding his attitude of entitlement and his lacvish lifestyle in this Daily Kos diary. The short version: Mr.Bertolini is highly compensated for running a company, the third largest health care company in the US, that provides some of the worst insurance health plans in the country as rated by their customers. Needless to say, they are also one of the most profitable:
Aetna said its third-quarter profit had risen to $499.2 million, or $1.47 per share, from $490.4 million, or $1.30 per share, a year earlier.
Excluding tax benefits and other special items, earnings rose to $1.55 per share from $1.40. That was ahead of analysts' average estimate of $1.34, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. [...]
Aetna's revenue increased to $8.9 billion from $8.4 billion, in line with expectations. The company attributed the rise to higher insurance premiums in its commercial, Medicare and Medicaid businesses.
So, not only is Aetna making huge profits, but much of its revenue is attributable to charging higher premiums for its Medicare and Medicaid plans. In short, Aetna is milking the Federal Cash Cow big time, charging more for delivering less. And it's CEO has the gall to threaten to make Americans "suffer" if he doesn't get his way so he can continue to pull down an outrageous income and his company can continue to profit off the misery of its customers.
Now, I understand that many of you may not have any direct investments in Aetna. But you may own mutual funds through your 401K plan or IRA that do invest in Aetna. You may have a pension plan or annuity you purchased that invests in Aetna. I have a modest IRA left over from monies I set aside before I became disabled. I strongly suspect that one of the mutual funds in which my IRA is invested probably owns some Aetna stock. After all, health insurance companies are doing well in the Great Recession, even if many millions of Americans are not, the same people Mr. Bertolini wants to make "suffer" (i.e., more than Aetna's customers and employees are already suffering) unless President Obama and the Democrats do his bidding.
Obviously, Mr. Bertolini is not a man who got to his position in life by exhibiting compassion or empathy for people who purchase his company's insurance or earn their living working in professions that don't screw people over, so an appeal to the "better angels of our nature" to quote Abraham Lincoln isn;t likely to work with him. Therefore, I thought a more direct approach might get his attention. Here is the text of my tweet to M. Berolini who can be reached at @mtbert:
@mtbert Calling my investment adviser today to ask her to sell any interest in Aetna I might own directly or indirectly.Have a nice day.— Steven Searls (@StevenDBT) November 15, 2012
Feel free to send a similar message to Mr. Bertolini to let him know that suffering can be a two way street.
UPDATE: After reading p gorden lippy's comment, I encourage you to use the hashtag #DumpAetna on any tweet you might make regarding this bully and his threats.