Skip to main content

This is just absolute malarkey from Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini:

Aetna Inc. Chief Executive Mark Bertolini, who is among a dozen chief executives meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama later this week, on Monday warned that companies are preparing backup plans that include layoffs if the White House and congressional leaders are unable to reach a deal to avoid the combination of tax increases and spending cuts known as the "fiscal cliff."

"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.

How dare you, Mr. Bertolini, yourself a multi-millionaire CEO, threaten to make hardworking Americans—to which you disdainfully refer to as "them"—"suffer" unless you get your way on pro-corporate tax policy.

And what's with this "us" (we'll) versus "them" rhetoric? Shockingly transparent behavior that speaks to Krugman's blog post today about conservative patriarchy:

There’s a strand of thought — I identify it especially with Corey Robin, although he’s not alone — that says that conservatism isn’t really about the things it claims to be about. It isn’t really about free markets and moral values; it’s about authority — the authority of bosses over workers, of men over women, of whites over Those People.
Bertolini has this:
Mark Bertolini and his wife, Susan, just back from Italy in 2001, were sipping Vernaccia di San Gimignano wine in the hot tub of their spacious Avon Mountain home and reveling in their good fortune.
And he threatens to fire Americans and make them suffer over—in the broad scope of things—extremely minor tax policy issues.

Dare I submit this guy is more of a dick than Mitt Romney? Not only does he want to fire people just to show he can make "them suffer," but he also cruelly thinks limiting access to the Affordable Care Act is a much better way to handle the deficit than him paying more in tax:

Bertolini said delays or cuts to Obama’s $1.2 trillion health-care overhaul may be part of the solution as the U.S. seeks a long-term fix to its budget deficit. The overhaul’s subsidies to help the uninsured buy coverage may be scaled back or phased in, or their onset delayed past a scheduled 2014 start date, he said.
Shame on Aetna's CEO for cruel language and even crueler threats. American workers are not hostages whose livelihoods can be treated like pawns by ego-maniac CEOs.

Mr. Bertolini, you may have the power to fire your employees and drive the sick into bankruptcy with your limited-benefit plans, but this is still a democracy.

Thank heavens for the leadership of Barack Obama and the newly elected progressives in Congress.

Mr. Bertolini should be careful as to how he speaks about the American people when discussing deficit issues, because, as most experts will admit, an Aetna-free America with Medicare-for-all is considered one of the best ways in which to sustainably lower the federal deficit.

8:21 PM PT: This CEO has a Twitter presence (@mtbert) at which we might share -- respectful -- thoughts as to our opinions regarding this economic hostage taking.

Thu Nov 15, 2012 at  7:20 AM PT: Folks, we don't win the argument by suggesting guillotines or any sort of violence. We win the argument by pointing out how single payer (Medicare for all) is the best possible way to cover everyone AND reduce the deficit.


Originally posted to james321 on Wed Nov 14, 2012 at 07:40 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Meteor Blades, skybluewater, fly, bink, Renee, GainesT1958, Alumbrados, paradox, Ed in Montana, Sylv, Alma, Chi, filkertom, MadRuth, grollen, copymark, teacherken, Liberal Thinking, Geenius at Wrok, abarefootboy, bosdcla14, byteb, jazzizbest, donna in evanston, SanJoseLady, liz, LynnS, Vico, eeff, xynz, Richard Cranium, Matilda, MarkInSanFran, exNYinTX, expatjourno, niemann, Creosote, davelf2, concernedamerican, bronte17, Zinman, missLotus, BlackSheep1, wonkydonkey, susakinovember, macleme, boadicea, chuckvw, boilerman10, mkfarkus, mrblifil, Aquarius40, farmerhunt, chimpy, Ignacio Magaloni, itskevin, jalbert, mollyd, splashy, TheCrank, Cedwyn, Alna Dem, wader, Lilyvt, Texknight, SneakySnu, slippytoad, hopesprings, psnyder, NYC Sophia, pat bunny, ranger995, Eyesbright, solliges, JimWilson, dwahzon, chantedor, Steven Payne, hoof32, defluxion10, Timbuk3, riverlover, Sue Hagmeier, Sophie Amrain, bwintx, seattledoglover, JayBat, zerelda, randallt, KayCeSF, jcrit, Emmy, vacantlook, AlwaysDemocrat, solesse413, vivadissent, eztempo, xxdr zombiexx, Sassy, nailbender, Skennet Boch, G2geek, A Citizen, maybeeso in michigan, historys mysteries, marina, NoMoreLies, greycat, ichibon, democracy inaction, Alice Venturi, kitchen sink think tank, dewtx, ChemBob, drewfromct, stagemom, Brooke In Seattle, Dobber, Laurence Lewis, ratzo, eru, SaraBeth, Dem Beans, where4art, Burned, skyounkin, Ice Blue, most peculiar mama, jane123, kaliope, Isara, Tool, Savvy813, wbr, sodalis, itsjim, Cory Bantic, Brian B, Lindy, peacestpete, mightymouse, Alan Arizona, Jim R, Born in NOLA, martini, redcedar, cybersaur, Clytemnestra, BlueInARedState, hungrycoyote, profundo, Russgirl, tonyahky, InsultComicDog, Lefty Coaster, blueoasis, NBBooks, twigg, gpoutney, Rosaura, SadieSue, Preston S, sceptical observer, absalom2, dirtfarmer, middleagedhousewife, Pilgrim X, SingerInTheChoir, IL clb, CA Nana, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, BB10, fiddlingnero, The Lighthouse Keeper, kurt, kenosha kid, AllanTBG, Little, DBunn, tegrat, ammasdarling, One Pissed Off Liberal, old wobbly, Noor B, out of left field, Cronesense, tgypsy, ColoTim, gloriana, blue71340, FishOutofWater, DvCM, la urracca, semioticjim, 18038, noofsh, deepeco, DWG, joedemocrat, davehouck, bnasley, HCKAD, jayden, rivamer, Rosalie907, millwood, jhop7, carpunder, yella dawg, uciguy30, GeorgeXVIII, skod, sable, Empower Ink, cville townie, gizmo59, JDWolverton, TruthFreedomKindness, Sixty Something, Involuntary Exile, dadadata, elwior, Akonitum, Its any one guess, tofumagoo, smartdemmg, icebergslim, TokenLiberal, Missys Brother, Jeff Y, Gemina13, petulans, Notreadytobenice, Bongobanger, JamieG from Md, sagansong, Robobagpiper, ekyprogressive, Ellinorianne, grsplane, billybam, David Futurama, scrambler, shortgirl, lissablack, oldliberal, Fiddlegirl, MrsTarquinBiscuitbarrel, multilee, artmartin, McGahee220, rubyclaire, MufsMom, J M F, litoralis, ceebee7, greengemini, divineorder, lostinamerica, ewmorr, be the change you seek, Mislead, Nebraskablue, Ohiodem1, mkor7, CamillesDad1, jmknapp53, GreenMtnState, kravitz, Shelley99, realwischeese, stevenwag, Little Flower, haremoor, jfromga, mahakali overdrive, Leftcandid, America Jones, Larsstephens, Words In Action, Railfan, cezariusz, parse this, brentbent, Broke And Unemployed, NJpeach, estreya, gramofsam1, Susan Grigsby, leftywright, cindiloohoo, fidellio, Crabby Abbey, wvmom, alguien, freeport beach PA, dagnome, gulfgal98, ItsSimpleSimon, Puddytat, anonevent, DiegoUK, sharonsz, SoonerG, Betty Pinson, DrTerwilliker, ericlewis0, Floande, petesmom, cany, wrpereir, slice, rmabelis, Mister Met, Onomastic, praying manatheist, kamrom, DrJohnB, coquiero, Oldowan, sboucher, spooks51, bgblcklab1, slowbutsure, sostos, vahana, AuroraDawn, cv lurking gf, freesia, ardyess, Seitanist, Mistral Wind, southernmapper, asterkitty, deeproots, Alice Olson, Deleuzional, Late Spring, molunkusmol, mrsgoo, marleycat, sethtriggs, IllanoyGal, slooterdam, smoothnmellow, KVoimakas, SueM1121, MRA NY, createpeace, loblolly, whoknu, Caddis Fly, Vatexia, cactusgal, jolux, SteelerGrrl, googie, Mentatmark, Auriandra, No one gets out alive, Azazello, Rejoinder, YaNevaNo, SuWho, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, livingthedream, OldDragon, Heart n Mind, anodnhajo, SparkyGump, Williston Barrett, Siri, We Won, molecularlevel, IndieGuy, nellgwen, The Lone Apple, S F Hippie, orpurple, congenitalefty, This old man, Frisbeetarian, mapamp, peachcreek, jan4insight, rivercard, radical simplicity, burnt out, parakeet, Buckeye54, BlackNGreen, wxorknot, avsp, Denver11, rat racer, wasatch, Marjmar, Robynhood too, CalBearMom, tn mountain girl, Hammerhand, Candide08, Dumas EagerSeton, Blue Bell Bookworm, Chaddiwicker, nomandates, Canid Micturate, Late Again, glorificus, Says Who, aresea, entrelac, Jollie Ollie Orange, LaraJones, Icicle68, Smoh, The Dark Harbor, Jacoby Jonze, GrannyRedBird, Laura Wnderer, ET3117, jplanner, Ishmaelbychoice, pragmaticidealist, JustGiaco, ShockandAwed, svip, starduster, shinobi9

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site