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Catherine’s interview of Jo Kline Cebuhar on Health Care Proxies
1. Introduction & Theme – 0:00 – Theme: Permission to Live; Power of dealing with the dangerous parts of life – nothing more dangerous than contemplating yourself becoming incapacitated – is that once you have a good plan finished and in place, it is very freeing – you give yourself permission to live. I am a person who has had significant evidence to support the notion that I will be dead in anywhere from 10 seconds to 24 hours on more than a few occasions. Through the process, death and I have become friends and the result has been a freedom to live the purpose I most want and joy in living that is quite freeing. I would be pleased if the Solari Report tonight contributes to your gift to yourself of permission to live. …
2. Money & Markets – 01:07 – One story that is bifurcated into many stories. I want to connect the dots and have you understand that it is one story. Financial coup d’etat blog post. Privatization, piratization. Greece – desperately needs a currency devaluation, can not do locked into Euro and so is in a downward spiral. When the city of Pontiac, Michigan, shut down its fire department last Christmas Eve, city councilman Kermit Williams learned about it in the morning paper. “Nobody reports to me anymore,” Williams says. “It just gets reported in the press.” This was just the latest in a series of radical changes in the city, where elected officials such as Williams have been replaced by a single person with unprecedented control over the city’s operation and budget. Gov. Rick Snyder put Louis Schimmel in charge of Pontiac last September, invoking Public Act 4, a recent law that lets the governor name appointees to take over financially troubled cities and enact drastic austerity measures. Under the law, passed last March, these emergency managers can nullify labor contracts, privatize public services, sell off city property, and even dismiss elected officials. Schimmel got to work quickly, firing the city clerk, city attorney, and director of public works and outsourcing several city departments. City fire fighters were told that they would be fired if their department was not absorbed by Waterford Township’s. Schimmel has proposed putting nearly every city property up for sale, including city hall, the police station, fire stations, water-pumping stations, the library, the golf course, and two cemeteries.
Williams and his six colleagues on city council have been stripped of their salary and official powers. “Nearly the whole city has been privatized,” he laments. In exchange for keeping at least a 90 percent occupancy rate, the private prison company Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) has sent a letter to 48 states offering to manage their prisons for the low price of $250 million per year, according to a letter obtained by the Huffington Post. Private sector is tending for the public sector and financing it by asset stripping, unloading liabilities and abrogating retirement arrangements. …
4. Movie – 09:46 – Hot Coffee is a 2011 documentary film that analyzes and discuses the impact of tort reform on the United States judicial system. It is directed by Susan Saladoff who was a medical malpractice attorney of 26 years. The film premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival on January 24, 2011 and later aired on HBO on June 27, 2011 as a part of HBO films documentary summer series. The title is derived from the Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurants lawsuit in which the plaintiff Liebeck was severely burned by hot coffee purchased from a McDonald’s. Hot Coffee discusses several cases and relates each to tort reform in the United States: Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurants and public relations campaigns (i.e. how the case was publicized to instigate tort reform)
Colin Gourley’s malpractice lawsuit and caps on damages. Prosecution of Mississippi Justice Oliver Diaz and judicial elections (i.e. how judges were elected for their positive stance on tort reform, reflecting election campaign contributions)
Jamie Leigh Jones v. Halliburton Co. doing business as KBR and mandatory arbitration …
2. Money & Markets (Continued)- 13:17 – We are seeing great stories about a mayor arranging a flash mob, cash mob to support local businesses. Also great story about software developers using technology to build new markets for fresh food, small farmers. GOOD NEWS FOR FINANCIAL MARKETS – Equities as holding their own, bond market is still with us despite non-existent yields. Administration has proposed new taxes on the wealth – important impact on investment income – highly unlikely that anything will pass this year, so market shrugged it off – but ominious implications for next year and beyond. ALL Part of the PUSH FOR CAPITAL CONTROLS by any other name. Reminder…if you have more than $50,000 in FFI FACTA, More than $10,000 FBAR. …
3. Solari Heroes – 19:17 – My heroes tonight are the people in my life who have met death with a smile and used their approaching death as an event that gave them permission to live life to the fullest. Think of that wise elder in your life and take the time over the next week or two to tell them they are one of your heros and to thank them. Wise elders are like the rest of us, their wisdom is nurtured by the sound of appreciation. …
5. Interview – 21:19 – Health care proxies and living wills? – What are they?? – Why they are so important?? – What could go wrong if you do not have one?? The big picture. Aging needs vs diminishing resources and ?what it means for policies in general and for us specifically and how that relates to the ?importance of being prepared. How to become familiar with options and your state law. Should we use professional help? How?? – Should you speak with family and friends?? – Getting it done. How to choose and educate a proxy. Suggestions for learning more. Link: Aging with Dignity …
8. Up Next & Closing – 1:03:12 – Mar 1 – Living in Faith; Mar 8, Precious Metals Market Report with Franklin Sanders; Mar 15, Organizing the Legal Structure for Your Start Up: The Comfort Calls Story. …
By Catherine Austin Fitts
I know talking about sickness and death may not seem like the most energizing topic for this Thursday night, but this one is really important! What Jo Kline Cebuhar writes and teaches can save our time, money, heartache, and may even save our life or the life of someone we love.
The person who taught me this was my dear friend Georgie LaRue. With lionhearted courage, Georgie lived through years of cancer treatment and three surgeries in 2000, 2004 and 2008. For each surgery, I served as a caretaker and advocate, sometimes moving into the hospital for days at a time. Before her surgery in 2008, Georgie did some serious planning, appointing me as the successor trustee on her trust and appointing her “niece” Valda as her proxy on her durable health care proxy and providing us with a living will with clear instructions on her personal wishes regarding end of life matters.
Georgie died in December 2010, after three intense months of moving from independent living, to assisted living, to nursing home, to hospital, to hospice. Valda and I were with her the entire time. Thanks to her careful planning and the power and authorities that she had vested in us, Georgie was protected and supported throughout. If she had not been, some terrible things would have happened.
I want you and your family to confidently navigate the health care system because you are educated and prepared. Jo Kline Cebuhar is someone who can help you do just that. She is an attorney and author of a beautifully written book that I highly recommend, Last things first, just in case…The practical guide to Living Wills and Durable Powers of Attorney for Health Care.
Jo and I will talk about living wills and durable health care proxies – what are they, why they are so important and how to use them to serve your best interests. We will cover how to educate yourself about your state laws and options, how to approach the planning process with family and friends and how to choose and educate a proxy. Finally, we will talk about the big picture – what is happening to the boomer generation and what it means to the health care system and each one of us over the next decade.
We will start with Money & Markets and Ask Catherine. Post your questions in the comments section for this blog post.
In Let’s Go to the Movies, I will review Hot Coffee, a documentary on changes in the civil justice system, with an important message on liability issues related to the health care system.
YouTube (June 1, 2011)
Talk to you Thursday!
If you have comments, thoughts or questions that you would like me to address, please post by Thursday.