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The Hubris of Rick Scott

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In the late 1990’s one of our local hospitals, running under the auspices of Columbia HCA, suffered severe layoffs of many staff members, including essential medical personnel such as doctors and nurses. This was a result of a huge fine of $1.7 billion in a plea agreement with the US government to avoid criminal charges for filing false Medicare claims, the largest fraud settlement in US history. Imagine my surprise when the CEO at the helm during this debacle, Rick Scott, decided in his infinite wisdom to run for governor of Florida in 2010. Not only did Rick have the hubris to run in the Republican primary, he is now the Republican candidate!

Rick Scott was forced to resign from Columbia HCA just as the proverbial you-know-what was hitting the fan, and HCA generously gave him $10 million in cash, $300 million in stock options, and a 10-year consulting contract with unknown value. Rick likes to remind folks that he was never charged with anything regarding the fraud case, but I’d like to remind Rick that Al Capone was never charged with anything other than tax evasion, so does that mean he didn’t kill anyone?

Rick is a big opponent of the economic stimulus plan and kvetches about it frequently in his stump speeches, often pointing out that his opponent Alex Sink voted for it (she did not). Oddly enough, Xfone, a company in which Rick has invested heavily and owns 15% of the stock, has received $63 million from the economic stimulus plan. In addition, a subsidiary of Xfone, Pride Network Inc., has just been given $36.1 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. To be fair, Rick has put some of his Xfone stock on the market, but obviously any sales made subsequent to the receipt of Federal funds will sell at a higher rate than they would have prior to the receipt of said funds.

Another annoying thing about Ricky Boy: He just trotted out Howdy Doody Bobby Jindal to run around the State of Florida with him on September 17th, and it’s such a strange coincidence that Xfone and Pride Network are both based in Mississippi. I’m sure Jindal was in Florida partly to support the Republican candidate, but I can’t help but wonder if he was also thinking about all the jobs Rick Scott’s Xfone and Pride Network provide in the State of Mississippi. Hmmm.

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About dharma55

  • dharma55

    Oops! I wanted to edit this before it was published but didn’t get a chance. I made an error and want to acknowledge it before anyone can drag my butt over the coals: I know that Jindal is not the Governor of Mississippi.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/scott-deitche Scott M. Deitche

    Great piece. Rick Scott is not only a fraud, but he doesn’t have any real plans for the State.

    He has only been here for 7 years and it is painfully obvious that he is very unaware of the major issues facing Florida, instead trotting out a half-baked economic plan and a promise to get rid of “all regulations”.

    Alex Sink all the way.

  • dharma55

    It frightens me that there are actually voters fooled by this guy.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    But wait! Don’t you know that it’s ALL Medicare’s fault? It’s Medicare’s fault that they were fraudulently charged for billions and billions over the past decades! That’s why the GOP wants to totally get rid of Medicare…except for when they carry signs at rallies saying, “Keep your guv’mint hands off my Medicare!”

    Blame Medicare! Blame the victim…just like when Rush (or was it O’Reilly?) blamed the rape victim for wearing suggestive clothing. It wasn’t the rapists fault – it was her fault…just like it’s all Medicare’s fault!

  • Stan Meon

    Isn’t an eduacated country like the United States supposed to have a few smart people. Why arent’ they running for Governor or for Congress. We get an now seeing the worst politicials imaginable running. Rick Scott is the worst criminal to get into politics. His past has been full of nothing but schemes to defraud Medicare at Columbia/HCA and now at Solantic. Doesn’t the public see through this? The GOP is fully endorsing him although a few weeks ago there were some smart Republicans who voted against him. Now they are in all in bed with him hoping that Rich Scott will give them some money or some jobs. Everyone promises to give new jobs. You can’t do that unless you increase taxes. Nobody wants that. Republicans don’t want to tax the super rich because that is the group full of special interests for funding them.

  • dharma55

    Wasn’t it Mike Huckabee who equated a pre-existing medical condition with asking an automobile insurance company to insure your car after you had an accident? I don’t know how on the one hand the Right Wing can pretend to be ultra-Christian, and on the other hand they can be so anti-human.