An Open Letter to Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle....
Opinion by Consumer Advocate Tim Bolen
Wednesday, December 15th, 2004
Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle - It's time you took a hard line with the employees at your Department of Regulation and Licensing (DRL), with an eye towards a serious house cleaning. The employees you have there simply ignore State policy, and common sense. Incompetence, ignorance, and brutality have become virtue.
Many of us were disappointed when Donsia Strong Hill resigned as Secretary of DRL - for I'm sure she was on the right track. But the frustrations of taking over, and the attempt to make changes, of an agency so obviously in the throes of corruption and incompetence, were, apparently, too much for her.
Although Strong Hill obviously started out with the best of intent, it soon became clear that she could not force long time employees, accustomed to a comfortable autonomy, into a framework.
It became clear to me, that in Wisconsin, despite all of its Northern claims to equality and integration, it was, and is, impossible for a black female to manage, and expect obedience and cooperation, from a staff of white middle-aged males comfortable in their world. The DRL Staff simply thwarted her, and she was unable to force the issues. "Racism" is alive and well in Wisconsin government. For all practical purposes, DRL is still operating in the dark ages - in more ways than one.
And, that's not working for Wisconsin, because there are serious problems at DRL that need to be addressed.
Health Care Regulation in Wisconsin is a Mess...
As Donsia Strong Hill found out, and publicly exclaimed, "What I inherited were a group of prosecutors who basically had functioned in the past with very little supervision over them or direction or even the establishment of priorities,"
Strong Hill said. "We certainly have changed that." When CBS News 3 asked Strong Hill, "You're supervising them more closely?" She responded, "They are definitely being supervised more closely."
However, despite Strong Hill's best intent, and the actual writing down of DRL policies, very little has changed - as is in evidence with current activities at DRL.
At DRL there is no focus, no plan, no management of a plan, nothing that serves the public.
Basically, DRL staff, because of this lack of focus, etc., is involved in bigotry - unrelenting, unchecked, hatred-in-the-eyes, prejudice. Personal opinions, no matter what form they take, reign. There is no adherence to State policy, what-so-ever, and certain employees believe, and openly voice, that "they" make State policy.
DRL, instead of focusing on disciplining "bad doctors," acts as a pressure agent for Health insurance companies. In Wisconsin, for all practical purposes, Health Insurance companies direct the daily activities of the DRL "Health Staff." DRL serves, predominantly, as a tool to deny claims, and force health professionals into compliance with health insurance company decisions. Fourteen of sixteen "complaints," and the consequent actions, filed against health professionals were from health insurance companies, not patients.
What They're INTENTIONALLY Missing at DRL...
According to a major new study, 39,170 people die unnecessarily, and 301,513 have severe health problems in Wisconsin due to the problems inherent in the approved American Health Care System - and nothing is being done about it. You can find out more about this by reading an earlier article called "The American Medical System is Broken."
Frankly, I've met the "Health Staff" at DRL - and THEY are the problem. The words "Inept" and "Incompetent" are understatement. Six weeks ago I sent a request for information (below) to Acting DRL Secretary Sandra Rowe, whom I've worked with before, when she was Chief of Enforcement. Rowe would have forwarded my information request to the "Health Staff," for action. In six weeks I haven't received even a phone call, or a note, about when my questions would be answered. I imagine, considering the nature, and seriousness of my concerns, that my request was ignored, for that's what they do... when they don't want a light shined on them, or don't want to do what they are supposed to do.
I suspect that the white middle-aged male "Health Staff," ignored the request forwarded to them from Sandra Rowe because she, too, is a black female they have no intention of taking orders from.
Wisconsin Department of Regulation & Licensing
Monday, November 8th, 2004
There are three issues on my plate today. Copies of my inquiry are distributed appropriately.
(One) An article in a New York Medical Association magazine, this month, discusses the health insurance industry’s recent actions to finance State prosecutions against health professionals. It never occurred to me, before, to ask whether or not this situation has, or is, occurring in Wisconsin.
As you may be aware, fourteen Wisconsin health professionals were turned in to DRL, and prosecutions ensued PURELY on the basis of insurance company complaints – there were NO PATIENT complaints. Consider this letter to be a formal request for information regarding the relationship between DRL and the health insurance industry.
Specifically, are there, or were there, any instances where a health insurance company, or anyone who could be construed as their agent(s), provided money, services, or anything of value, for a case against any health professional within the State of Wisconsin? If so, how much, by whom, and what was the result of each case?
Specifically, are there, or were there, any instances where ANYONE provided money, services, or anything of value, for a case against any health professional within the State of Wisconsin? If so, how much, by whom, and what was the result of each case?
I would consider it abhorrent for DRL to sell its prosecutorial services to private industry, or to a private individual. So, I think, would the people of Wisconsin.
(Two) The Death by Medicine article, found in the text of “Wisconsin: Just a Lull in the Battle…” raises serious issues about Wisconsin DRL’s lack of proactive solutions to health problems. Can you give me some idea WHEN DRL will be engaging in a process to stem the death and injury rate in Wisconsin? Other States are already doing this… There are health professionals, and interested media, within the State who could HELP you set up such a program. For instance CBS NEWS just did an expose’ on the hospital scandal, just a few days ago.
(Three) Has your agency conducted an investigation into exactly how over 100 of the patient records turned over by Stuart Suster MD to DRL, under subpoena by Arthur Thexton, ended up in the hands of Milwaukee Fox TV 6? If so, what was the result of that investigation? Will there be a disciplinary action?
The best evidence of this lack of control of DRL employees is the continued antics of two DRL prosecutors, Arthur Thexton, and James Polewski, and their Supervisor Michael Berndt, who, together, frankly, make up Wisconsin's health care version of the Ku Klux Klan.
Thexton, originally came to public attention, over the Eleazar Kadile MD case, a situation where Thexton and Berndt were, obviously, attempting to wipe out innovation in health care in Wisconsin. The "stipulation" they attempted to inflict on Kadile would have inflicted the wild-eyed health opinions of the subversive group calling itself the "quackbusters," on Wisconsin's unsuspecting population. Thexton, and Berndt, with this so-called "stipulation" would have put at risk the medical practices of over a thousand of Wisconsin's Medical Doctors, and Doctors of Osteopathy. During this process, Thexton used as his "medical expert," and paid him over $70,000, Robert S. Baratz, a hair removal and ear piercing expert, the current president of the courtroom discredited National Council Against Health Fraud (NCAHF), from Braintree, Massachusetts.
Thexton's witness, Baratz, was publicly humiliated in a courtroom drama that drew serious media attention. CBS characterized Thexton and Baratz's attempt as 'It's Clearly A Witch Hunt'. The attack on Eleazar Kadile MD was thwarted, but Thexton attempted to retaliate by attacking Eleazar's wife Genia, allegedly for offering nutritional advice. That attack was also thwarted.
Thexton had earlier attacked Dale Buegel MD, and documents show, Thexton acted completely unethically to remove Buegel's license to practice medicine. Buegel, when attacked, mistakenly agreed to a "stipulation" wherein he would take a class in something. Thexton, in communication with another attorney, bragged that he knew Buegel would not be able to comply because the class started before the stipulation was agreed upon. When Buegel could not comply, because the "class" was already closed, Thexton filed to take Buegel's license, claiming "Buegel should have known.,.."
But Thexton's worst case, by far, was his attack on Milwaukee Pain Management specialist Stuart Suster MD, on behalf of several health insurance companies. Thexton subpoenaed over a hundred patient records from Suster, then turned them all over to a TV news reporter - who abused the information to ruin Suster's practice. Revealing patient records is a Federal felony punishable by 10 years in jail, and a $250,000 fine - for each occurrence. Suster is suing Thexton over issues, and situations, so horrible, I've never, ever, heard of anything so bad.
Thexton, in the Suster case, pulled out all the stops, and completely ignored Suster's Civil Rights - probably because of Thexton's innate bigotry. Stuart Suster is a dwarf.
And then there's James Polewski's stumbling attacks against innovation in health care.
The Common Theme at DRL...
Bigotry. Ignorance. Disorganization. Lack of "due process" due to lack of adequate management.
The Bottom Line...
There is a committee of top Wisconsin health professionals and health activists ready, and willing, to help you, and the successor you pick to replace Donsia Strong Hill, to solve this problem. Pick somebody "tough" who will have no problem reassigning the white middle-aged male "Health Staff," to something they can handle - like cleaning urinals.
Tim Bolen - Consumer Advocate
This "Millions of Health Freedom Fighters - Newsletter" is about the battle between "Health and Medicine" on Planet Earth. Tim Bolen is an op/ed writer with extensive knowledge of the activities of a subversive organization calling itself the "quackbusters," and that organization's attempts to suppress, and discredit, any, and all health modalities that compete with the allopathic (MD) paradigm for consumer health dollars. The focus of the newsletter is on the ongoing activities, battles, politics, and the victories won by members of the "Health Freedom Movement" against the "quackbusters" It details "who the quackbusters are, what they are, where they are operating, when they appear, and how they operate - and how easy it is to beat them..."
For background information on the "Battle between Health and Medicine" go to: http://www.savedrclark.net/by_whom2.htm. A copy of THIS newsletter, and older ones, are viewable at the website http://www.quackpotwatch.org/default.htm.
For EVEN MORE interesting and related articles go to http://www.bolenreport.com.