Opinion Editorial – That Shit Ain’t Right (TSAR)
Sheriff Jim, DDS, PRTSAR – Volunteer Executive Director & Sheriff, That Shit Ain’t Right
Published April 27, 2013
(Re-purposed That Shit Ain’t Right (TSAR) Opinions Blog Comment in Response to HRDI Settlement Disbands “Anticompetitive, Secret Society” – Yesterday’s News that is Still Relevant Today.)
It is now clear that the That Shit Ain’t Right (TSAR) investigation into Healthcare Research and Development Institute, LLC (HRDI) that would eventually end exposing violations of the public trust is why David J. Fine, President & CEO of St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System in Houston Texas is attacking TSAR and our members, in my opinion.
For example, Mr. Fine has salaried St. Luke’s employees monitor TSAR closely, instructed the St. Luke’s Legal Department numerous times to identify the registrar of this website, unsuccessfully and at the expense of St. Luke’s, forced one of his minions who is a Harvard Law School graduate attorney to threaten one of TSAR’s members with filing a bogus police report against him unless he use his influence with the TSAR Sheriff’s Office to take down St, Luke’s related opinions from this website. The attorney is employed by St. Luke’s and is not representing the organization in the current round of TSAR sponsored government investigations, and the member being threatened is a witness in the case. So, at a minimum, this would appear to be inappropriate or unethical contact and could even rise to the level of being construed as witness tampering. Mr. Fine also had TSAR members threatened with arrest for criminal trespassing, if on St. Luke’s owned or leased property unless seeking medical treatment, and even tried to do it at the Administrative Services Office that is located in the Houston Community College (HCC) Building and St. Luke’s is just one of many tenants. HCC police had to remind St. Luke’s that they do not own the building or common areas, and anybody with legitimate business is welcome in non-St, Luke’s lease space and to not send their rented Houston Police Officers into the building to hassle TSAR members. That reminds me of the time that paid St, Luke’s off duty police officers were indicted for beating a man without cause and was caught on camera in the O’Quinn Medical Tower at St. Luke’s, but I digress.
Mr. Fine and St. Luke’s have lost all charges to date at tax payer expense filed via government agencies by TSAR members and has basically tried and failed to shut TSAR down be any means that he could come up with. As reported by current St. Luke’s executive sympathetic to TSAR and opposed to Mr. Fine’s practices, his head is about to explode like it would when Dr. David Pate, MD, JD, former CEO of St, Luke’s Episcopal Hospital (Houston) and he would both speak at the same event, and Mr. Fine would draw a polite. short, small applause, while Dr. Pate would consistently earn a standing ovation with cheers and whistles from the crowd. My view is representative of TSAR members close to this investigation and many others in the healthcare sector. However, TSAR teams focused on Federal government issues, State;s Rights and other investigative subject areas are not really involved in this matter, as they have better things to do with their time to move TSAR investigations in their areas of competency forward.
According to Court Records obtained from the Connecticut Attorney General’s Office, David J. Fine, President & CEO of St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System in Houston Texas was a “member” of Healthcare Research and Development Institute, LLC (HRDI), an anticompetitive group of hospital executives and healthcare vendors that was disbanded by an antitrust settlement with Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s office that agreed to pay Connecticut $150,000. The Florida Attorney General’s office in HRDI’s home state joined Connecticut in the agreement.
HRDI was a for-profit company owned by the CEO’s of many of the nation’s leading hospitals and healthcare institutions. It claimed to provide healthcare consulting services to vendors serving the healthcare field. In reality, Blumenthal said that the organization was an anticompetitive club where only select corporations from the healthcare supply industry were permitted membership.
The vendors paid $40,000 for membership privileges in HRDI, enabling them direct access to the healthcare provider CEO’s who wielded immense purchasing power. The CEO “members,” who were each owners of HRDI, were paid an average of $20,000 to $25,000 annually to attend conferences with luxury accommodations for them and their spouses, and to provide consulting services to vendors, while operating under the auspices of representing their respective healthcare provider organizations.
In TSAR’s opinion, most of Mr. Fines paranoid attacks on TSAR, driven by his narcissistic personality, were coincident with the launch of TSAR’s investigation into HRDI and the associated “pay to play” deals, fully paid expensive trips to five star hotels/resorts with lavish wining and dining and the like provided by select vendors and enjoyed by this elite group of healthcare executives at the expense of their organizations and by extension, whole communities. Higher healthcare costs were incurred by many Americans due to the additional overhead passed on to our overburdened healthcare safety net that so many Citizens rely upon, including Mr. Fine’s own employees at St. Luke’s and elsewhere and struggling families, as TSAR sees it.
These attacks on TSAR finally resulted in one member contacting Bishop Suffragan Dena A. Harrison of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas who is also an esteemed member of the St. Luke’s board to have Mr. Fine put his “dawg,” Susan Bailey-Newell, Vice President – Human Resources, on a leash, although he did let her off anyway approximately 3 months ago. The TSAR member victimized by her simply reported the incident to Steve Pickett, Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer – St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System, who is her immediate supervisor and let the incident slide.
So, shame on Mr. Fine for his association with HRDI at the expense of his organization(s), resulting in higher medical costs for struggling families and others. Of course, this is between him and his God of whatever is his religion du jour, since he seems to switch religions to associate with those who can advance his career the most. For example, how many people begin Jewish, convert to Catholicism (a big leap) and then become Episcopalian (a smaller step) as they move into organizations with a particular religious leaning? As TSAR sees it, we will just say that is an interesting study of manipulative, self-promoting behavior and tactics that have served Mr. Fine well to this point, as he has amassed a multimillion dollar net worth, and leave it at that. It is actually sort of funny, in a sick kind of way.
In TSAR’s opinion, while those victimized by Mr. Fine and his cronies are often Christians so they have forgiven him, prayed that he will seek the Lord’s forgiveness on his own and forgive himself, he would do well to remember that the Holy Bible also tells of a person’s deeds, both good and bad, coming back around ten fold so getting right with Him should likely be a priority for Mr. Fine, since he can not change the past. This is simply the consensus within TSAR and others on the matter above.
“When I smell bullshit, it usually means that there’s bullshit around somewhere.” - Sheriff Jim
TSAR members will no longer tolerate being subjected to abusive treatment by St. Luke’s management personnel. If we are, all legal avenues will be pursued including, but not limited to:
- Filing police reports
- Filing additional civil/criminal cases
- Organizing at least 1 picket line with “quite interesting” signs (with media coverage)
- Scheduling one City of Houston approved organized march and rally (with media coverage)
- Obtaining one month of prominent billboard signage containing a “quite catchy” anti-St. Luke’s slogan
- Reaching out to labor unions to partner with on a variety of labor related issues concerning St. Luke’s employment practices
- Hitting the AM radio talk show circuit and social media/Blogs with “tell all” unflattering true stories about St. Luke’s dirty laundry (and there is a WHOLE lot of it)
- One week of TSAR volunteers operating a commercial strength, automated dialer phone bank contacting donors to St. Luke’s to share our message, Yes, we have the list.
- A massive professional email marketing campaign focusing on the failure of leadership at St. Luke’s that will include all of TSAR’s investigative findings to date related to St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System and some St. Luke’s executives, and there are many solid, verifiable, documented findings
- And MANY more legal activities, if necessary
Thankfully, one benefit of being a member of TSAR is having uniformed law enforcement protection available 24/7, at no cost. These are simply just “a few of our close friends” that one member referred to once and was misconstrued with no substantiation by St. Luke’s in a current EEOC Discrimination Charge by the highly respected TSAR member. This protection includes, but is not limited to, active peace officers serving as Harris County Sheriffs, Harris County Constables, Fort Bend County Sheriffs, Montgomery County Sheriffs, Waller County Sheriffs and more.
In fact, the TSAR member referenced above was actually a patient at St. Luke’s last week (due to health insurance restrictions) and was informed that he will be arrested for criminal trespassing, if he is not on site for medical treatment for himself or his family. In case you are curious, this TSAR member gained some great insights while at St. Luke’s into the current mind-set of St, Luke’s employees that have been subjected to Mr. Fine’s management by fear approach for so long, in TSAR’s opinion. He also had police protection handy either in/near his hospital room or minutes away at all times, just in case. BTW: This TSAR member reported that the care that he received by St. Luke’s staff and independent practicing physicians was outstanding and that the food was excellent!
St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System is “The Gift that Keeps on Giving” in terms of information for TSAR to use to HELP this organization do the right thing by the Community that it professes to serve. What are they going to do, sue us? If St. Luke’s wins by using part of the multibillion dollar war chest at its disposal and powerful contacts, it will be entitled to some of our bills or all of our bills. TSAR will take these odds in a heart beat. GAME ON, “Mo-FO!”
Onward and Upward
That Shit Ain’t Right (TSAR) is growing and now has some supporters with pretty deep pockets, including former St. Luke’s executives displaced when Mr. Fine brought in his trusted minions. Once TSAR attains not for profit status, we will begin our own capital campaign utilizing the same lists used by St. Luke’s and other large healthcare systems.
However, we would all do well to remember one of my favorite sayings, “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.”
As always, add 98 cents to this, and you may (or may not) have a buck.