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Transplant Surgeon Called Dibs On Steve Jobs' Home

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the so-are-you-an-organ-donor? dept.

Medicine 291

theodp writes "The Commercial Appeal reports that Dr. James Eason, the surgeon who performed Steve Jobs' liver transplant, found himself grilled at length Monday by Shelby County Commission members. The Univ. of Tennessee-Methodist Transplant Institute, which Eason heads, is in a bitter dispute over the distribution of human organs. Pressed for details by Commissioners West Bunker and Terry Roland about the 2009 liver transplant that Eason performed on the late Steve Jobs, Eason acknowledged that he's now living in the Memphis home that Jobs used during his convalescence. Bunker asked, "Was that a deal cut to get him a transplant here locally?" Eason: "I understand. It's a fair question. Absolutely not." Eason said a company lined up the housing for Jobs. "I took care of him and visited him in that home. And when I learned that it was going to be going on the market, I asked him, I asked the administrator of the LLC, if I could purchase it." So, is it time for Apple to shed some light on The Mystery of Steve Jobs' Memphis Mansion? It was reported that Apple lawyer George Riley, reportedly a friend of Eason's, helped Jobs with the arrangements for the Memphis mansion, which was acquired at a bargain price of $850,000 from the State of Tennessee by the mysterious LCHG, LLC on 3/26/2009. LCHG was formed on 3/17/2009, apparently just days before Jobs received his liver (on 3/21/2010, Jobs noted he was coming up on the 1-year anniversary of his transplant). Records show that title to the mansion was transferred to Eason in May, 2011, about three months after the National Enquirer painted a grim picture of Jobs' health. LCHG, LLC was dissolved in February 2012."

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291 comments

No idea (5, Insightful)

mynamestolen (2566945) | about 2 years ago | (#40452417)

Badly written article. I have no idea what it means.

Re:No idea (0)

bannable (1605677) | about 2 years ago | (#40452443)

I guess the submitter is upset that this surgeon heard this nice house was on the market and decided to buy it?
Is he trying to insinuate that the surgeon was blackmailing jobs...? IDGI

Re:No idea (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452499)

No. The issues is whether Steve arranged a kickback to the surgeon and his hospital in exchange for some preferential treatment. Did Jobs get a local (more convenient for him?) procedure, or did it go as far as being bumped up on the transplant list. If the latter, then it implies that Jobs used his money and position to get ahead of others who were also dying.

Re:No idea (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about 2 years ago | (#40452515)

Imagine that happening in the good ol' USA!

Shocking!

karma? (1)

Thud457 (234763) | about 2 years ago | (#40453017)

fat lot of good it did him.

Wouldn't calling dibs (right of first refusal?, DRTFTUA) on Steve's house be another conflict of interest for the doctor? He'd then have reason to get rid of the current owner.

Re:karma? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453221)

fat lot of good it did him.

You begin to understand the problem, you just need to look a little bit further.

The system prioritizes those who could most benefit medically. That is, if you are likely to die even with the transplant, then you should be behind the person who might have a 80% chance of 20 or 30 more years of life with that same organ. If Jobs "greased the skids" to get himself to the head of the list even though he was likely to die with the transplant, then there are some serious questions to be answered.

Clearly the commissioners believe there is enough suspicion to investigate this more closely. It has the appearance of corruption on the part of the doctor and of Jobs.

Re:No idea (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452607)

Isn't that exactly how the American health care system works? I'm pretty goddamn sure that's what the republicans have been saying for years now. Those who can pay the most get the best treatment and fuck everyone else. That's it isn't it?

Re:No idea (4, Insightful)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#40452815)

That's pretty much how the world works. You can bet rich people in the UK don't stand in line at the local clinic. Germany either. If you're a billionaire and you have a deadly disease what do you think you're going to do? I don't know about you but I'm going to come off the wallet and try to save my ass. It's reality.

Artificial organ scarcity (5, Funny)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 2 years ago | (#40453081)

That's pretty much how the world works.

And that is the way the world should work. People should be able to use money to buy things they want, encouraging more people to supply them. The problem here is that we have decided this shouldn't apply to organs, so the supply is severely restricted. If organs were treated like a normal commodity they would be far more plentiful because way more people would be donors. I have the donor dot on my drivers license, and was paid exactly $0 to volunteer.

Another problem is motorcycle helmet laws. By preventing lethal head injuries on otherwise young healthy individuals, we are removing a great source of organs. Maybe anyone who has volunteered to be a donor should be allowed to ride without a helmet.

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (4, Insightful)

SpeZek (970136) | about 2 years ago | (#40453237)

Does Poe's Law apply to capitalists too?

I honestly can't tell if you're serious.

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (3, Informative)

bandy (99800) | about 2 years ago | (#40453263)

According to a doctor friend of mine who rides, the helmet keeps the brainstem working long enough to keep the body working so the organs can be donated.

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (1)

Uberbah (647458) | about 2 years ago | (#40453283)

And that is the way the world should work.

By telling poor people: "tough luck, organs are awarded based on ability to pay and nothing else"?

"Sorry, 25 year old father of two, we know you were waiting on a heart transplant for that congenital defect that the hospital just discovered....but it went to Dick Cheney instead, cuz he's a rich bastard and you're not."

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (3, Insightful)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 2 years ago | (#40453489)

By telling poor people: "tough luck, organs are awarded based on ability to pay and nothing else"?

Why not? That is the way we distribute food, clothing and housing. Why should organs be different? What you are missing, is that if there were no artificial restrictions on organs, they would be far more plentiful. Most people don't check the donor box, because there is no incentive to do so. If they were prepaid $100, many more would do so.

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (5, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about 2 years ago | (#40453507)

As opposed to telling people at random, "Sorry, we know you were waiting on a heart transplant, but there are five people a month who will die without a heart transplant, but there are only two of the people a month who die actually signed up to be organ donors, even though there are ten a month whose hearts would be suitable for transplant."

Re:Artificial organ scarcity (4, Insightful)

catmistake (814204) | about 2 years ago | (#40453497)

That's pretty much how the world works.

And that is the way the world should work. People should be able to use money to buy things they want, encouraging more people to supply them. The problem here is that we have decided this shouldn't apply to organs, so the supply is severely restricted. If organs were treated like a normal commodity they would be far more plentiful because way more people would be donors.

The problem is that human organs are not a normal commidity. Money doesn't and shouldn't give you the right to someone's organs. Money doesn't make you more deserving of the right to live any more than money makes you more deserving of death. If you believe that if you are rich enough then you should be allowed to pay for the right to have, say, the organs that will be available once someone is taken off life support, you are not only putting pressure on a situation that already has deep ethical concern for the doctor and the patient's family, what you are in effect saying is that if you are rich enough, you should be allowed to pay to kill someone. To put it another way, if you believe it is ethical for you to be able to pay to have some available organ, then you must believe it is perfectly ethical that I can pay to prevent you from getting said available organ. Ultimately the argument for an organ market is an egocentric one, and it doesn't meet the criterial of universalization, meaning that what you wish is not applicable to all under similar circumstances, and it therefore cannot be ethical.

Re:No idea (1)

CubicleZombie (2590497) | about 2 years ago | (#40453641)

Why shouldn't Steve Jobs get better treatment?

Lets say he and I needed liver transplants at the same time. I'm a nobody. I add very little to the world compared to Jobs. Why shouldn't he get bumped up in the priority list? Even better, why couldn't Steve and I bid for the liver with the proceeds going to the family of the donor? Losing a loved one must be difficult and expensive. Why not let the family profit.

Is there a better metric than money? Should it be good looks? Charitable donations? Number of Facebook friends? Slashdot Karma?

Re:No idea (4, Insightful)

johnlcallaway (165670) | about 2 years ago | (#40452623)

Yawn ... no story here. Nothing other than vague insinuations without any substantiations. I suppose people like to get worked up over stuff like this to bring other people down a notch or two. At least in their simple minds.

When there is some real proof, let us know. 'Cuz I can see a different viewpoint...

Doctor: Nice place you have here Steve
Steve:Thanks
Doctor: If you ever decide to get rid of it, let me know. I might be interested in it.
Steve: You know doc, you've been real good to me. Tell you what, I'll sell it to you for a song to show my appreciation. It's a tough market out there now, and it would be nice to get rid of it.
Doctor: Wow .. what a great guy you are. Thanks

I find it interesting that people who always look for the bad in people always seem to find it. Must be a tough life, going around seeing the evil in every little thing while the beauty around you goes unnoticed.

Re:No idea (5, Insightful)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#40452831)

I think maybe you're a little naive.

Re:No idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452963)

I think maybe you're a little naive.

And maybe you are pessimistic.

Re:No idea (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452943)

Steve: You know doc, you've been real good to me. Tell you what, I'll sell it to you for a song to show my appreciation. It's a tough market out there now, and it would be nice to get rid of it.
Doctor: Wow .. what a great guy you are. Thanks

Yeah... that doesn't really sound like something Steve Jobs would do though, Jobs was a smart guy, but he wasn't necessarily the nicest guy, he had an ego the size of everest and a sense of entitlement to match.

No idea? Really? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453109)

Isn't it interesting that Jobs, a California resident, was able to get a transplant in Tennessee? Bypassing all those sick little children and other in that state who were on the list before him, btw.

The whole thing disgusted me almost as much as the fact that David Crosby was bumped up the list for his liver transplant to just go back to his ways again.

And in the meantime, there these poor kids who just got dealt a bad deal going without because they're not rich and shameless.

Re:No idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452699)

Why is parent modded down? Slashdot is becoming such a lame place...

Re:No idea (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452747)

I read an article some time ago about this...don't recall where. Steve Jobs' health status was used as a springboard to discuss the issue.

From what I remember from the article, a person seeking a transplant can be on multiple transplant waiting lists across the US (it's broken up into regions). However, that person would have to be able to travel to any region where an organ became available very quickly once informed. Steve happened to have the means to do so. Not everyone does. If you're wealthy and healthy enough for such travel, you can apply to multiple waiting lists. The list in the Memphis/TN region tended to be shorter than others, thus he got an organ faster than in CA.

Travel after transplant surgery would likely be a big fat NO. He'd need time to recover and likely want to be near the surgeon and hospital where he got the surgery.

That doesn't speak to whether he got preferential treatment within the region, though. Hmmm...

Re:No idea (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453583)

I read an article some time ago about this...don't recall where. Steve Jobs' health status was used as a springboard to discuss the issue.

The Economist. I read that too.

However, that person would have to be able to travel to any region where an organ became available very quickly once informed.

You mean a A Billionaire with a private jet.

Here's what I'm thinking: he bypassed a bunch of children who were dealt a bad deal just because he was a billionaire who sold fancy gadgets of no real value. I mean please, I'm doing just fine without any of his products or clones.

I think His appeal is that He was kinda weird and an outcast and made good - very good.

So He was The Outlier of the century and folks worship Him - The Almighty Steve Jobs. The almighty who never even made an attempt at redemption - like this Bill guy from Redmond. I think Steve would have said "Fuck you World!" even if he lived until 100 making fancy little electronic gadgets with no real value..

Re:No idea (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#40452785)

Not surprising. Happened with Mickey Mantle too and he didn't have anywhere near the money Jobs had. Celebrities get preferential treatment and that's a fact.

Re:No idea (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about 2 years ago | (#40452911)

Because we all know that Jobs would not have done a solid for a friend and sold it for a bargain price.

No, Jobs ate babies, he would have never done that.

BTW: when I bought my friends jeep for under Bluebook I guess it was a "kickback" as well.

Re:No idea (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453147)

Steve Jobs basically robbed one of his first colleagues of hundreds of dollars for work he didn't do. I'm willing to bet he'd do a lot more. Jobs was a good business leader, but he was still an asshole.

Re:No idea (4, Insightful)

Artifakt (700173) | about 2 years ago | (#40453331)

Because we all know that Jobs would not have done a solid for a friend and sold it for a bargain price

Think about how many times just that sort of explanation has been used in court by people charged with racketeering, ponzi schemses, and similar. "Just a litte favor for a friend" is what people who are paying illegal kickbacks bribery, or extortion always say. A guy gets a contract for a new highway overpass, and it just haapens he recently built an outdoor hot tubbing area behind state representitive X's house at a bargain rate - just a favor for a long standing friend.

Here, a corporation was apparently formed and dissolved soon after just to handle this one transaction. Doesn't that sound like just maybe somebody knew they were guilty of something and was trying to cover it up? Oh no, people don't do that to hide from the law, they form new corporations just to do "a solid for a friend!".

Re:No idea (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | about 2 years ago | (#40452995)

Seriously? That's what you get from that summary?

Not that there's suspicion that it was a pay off for getting him a transplant he wouldn't have otherwise got.

Of course it doesn't mean that was actually the case but apparently someone other than the submitter is investigating the matter implying there's some suspicion.

Re:No idea (3, Informative)

kestasjk (933987) | about 2 years ago | (#40452513)

The guy who did Jobs' liver transplant got Jobs' house at a great price just before the transplant went through, via a shell company.

Re:No idea (2, Informative)

Mimfort (1440441) | about 2 years ago | (#40452529)

It means not only did Jobs buy his way to the head of the transplant line in a state he had never lived in, but his trust sold the house to the doctor who performed the transplant. Legal, perhaps, but morally bankrupt. Jobs was a bad man.

Re:No idea (4, Interesting)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | about 2 years ago | (#40452627)

Not only that, he wasted a liver that could have been used for a lifetime by a person who should have gotten it

Re:No idea (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452725)

This. If Jobs "paid to be at the head of the line", then someone ELSE who could have maybe lived with that liver is now dead, just because Jobs was a 1%er.

Re:No idea (3, Funny)

SethJohnson (112166) | about 2 years ago | (#40452951)

Not only that, he wasted a liver that could have been used for a lifetime by a person who should have gotten it

Most assuredly, this liver was used for a lifetime by Steve Jobs.

Seth

Re:No idea (4, Insightful)

Artifakt (700173) | about 2 years ago | (#40453473)

Jobs was a known bad transplant risk (for cancer that had already spread to multiple organs, a common reason to take a person off the lists entirely), and that liver only bought him a couple of years, if that. There are plenty of people who gain 20 or 30 healthy productive years from a liver transplant - in fact the best estimate currently for how long a transplant patient will live if they make it through the first few months when organ rejection is likely is now averaging 30 years. So yes, Jobs got a lifetime like anyone else, but not all lifetimes are (re)created equal.

Re:No idea (4, Informative)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 2 years ago | (#40452931)

depends on whether or not he sold the home at market rates or reasonably close thereto.

Just because it's a mansion doesn't mean it's actually worth a lot. We just had a friend of the family die who owned a property with 3 buildings on it, where similar properties down the street were going in the 2-2.5 million range, the one in question got just under 500k. Because as it turns out, no one had updated the electrical system since the switchover from 25 to 60 Hz power, and 75 years of bats living in ceilings doesn't do buildings any favours. Who knew?

If you read the TFA's (and god are there a lot of them) the house was, pre 2008, appraised at between 1.3 and 1.4 million. And was the mansion for the university chancellor. Jobs bought it for 850k. Which, considering memphis has seen year over year price drops of easily double digits wouldn't be a huge shock. (http://www.trulia.com/home_prices/Tennessee/Memphis-heat_map/). Also keep in mind that the Steve jobs LLC probably paid cash.

From TFA, Eason paid 850K, which is the same as the LLC paid, I think.

So what I would read into this is that housing prices for Million plus dollar homes in memphis crashed by 40% from 2008 to 2009, or at least expensive house prices crashed, and then there was the specific house in question, which, having been a chancellors mansion for the university might have only a limited clientèle of people who would actually want it. (Location maybe? I've never been to TN let alone memphis so the address means nothing to me).

So sure, Steve probably got himself a deal from the government who were and are desperate for money on a house that wasn't going up in value any time soon. Whether or not it was actually an unfair deal is much harder to say. When housing prices are falling expect to get less than you were asking, and less than you appraised for.

Re:No idea (2)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#40452991)

I agree it wasn't right. That said, I hope you're never in such a desperate situation where you're dying and grabbing at anything to live. I wonder if you'd live up to your own high standards? I like to think I'd refuse to take advantage but having never been there I can't say. It's easy to Judge when you haven't been there.

Re:No idea (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#40453003)

Legal, perhaps, but morally bankrupt. Jobs was a bad man.

It boils down to a question of is medicine a for profit industry or not. A major political question only in the USA. Regardless of what it "should" be, for profit or socialized, medicine clearly currently is a for-profit industry, here, at this time, so what he did obviously perfectly fits our moral code and obviously did not make him a bad man. He may have been immoral or bad in general or for other reasons, but merely participating in our healthcare system is not going to have an effect on his moral standing.

I can see how someone from a different, perhaps more advanced culture, with a fully socialized medical system might think our system is wrong. Personally I'd agree. But its pointless to single out one famous guy from that inferior culture and demonize him as "the" problem.

Its very much like "George Washington owned slaves therefore he was evil" type of meaningless drivel.

Re:No idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453593)

The contrast between the feigned moral sophistication of your comment and the snide reductionism of your signature is pretty jarring.

Re:No idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453367)

Wealth makes right. Steve paid for his bump on the list. If he had been bumped without paying for it, THAT would have been immoral (and tantamount to theft).

It doesn't matter if some poor person died who could otherwise have been saved. That poor person couldn't afford to pay for a bump on the list, and didn't last long enough to get his turn behind the people who could (and did) afford to pay.

What, you think poor people get some special rights and should get preferential treatment just because they are poor? That is ludicrous. Wealth is direct proof of one's contributions and value to society. Poor people are poor because they can't do squat for their fellow man (that is worth paying for). Why in God's name would we want to treat them as if they are more valuable than they are?

Re:No idea (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452581)

Have you not been part of the work world before and been told, "avoid even the appearance of impropriety"? Well this certainly has the appearance of impropriety, does it not?

That's why people are saying there are questions that need to be answered.

Re:No idea (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about 2 years ago | (#40452613)

Come on... are you paying attention to the world at all.

The ideas of avoiding the appearance of impropriety and conflict of interest have gone right out the window. Just look at the Supreme Court and Congress. None of them obviously heard about it either.

Going through the motions of questioning a real estate deal like this seems rather quaint and rather cute, and it's sure to amount to nothing at all. When you are in the elite you can buy your way out.

Re:No idea (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#40452975)

If Obama can buy a house for 50 cents on the dollar from someone seeking influence and go on to be elected president then clearly the rules have changed.

Re:No idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453121)

And there lies the problem. The 1%ers can buy influence, buy their way to the head of organ transplant queues, buy laws...

The rest of us? Just gotta suck it up and heed the ruling class.

This just in... (-1, Offtopic)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#40452435)

Slashdot is running a story about some rich dude's property being sold off after he went to the great iCloud in the sky. He was sort of a jerk, so naturally we have to assume there was a conspiracy to kill him. And now all his property is being sold off and used by other people... oh, the humanity. We should have buried him with all his things like King Tut or something instead.

Re:This just in... (2)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#40452463)

...so naturally we have to assume there was a conspiracy to kill him.

Conversely, for people who believe Steve was a really nice guy... we can also discuss the conspiracy to save him from the conspiracy to kill him.

not about murder; about improper financial benefit (0)

SuperBanana (662181) | about 2 years ago | (#40452617)

They're not implying that he was killed for the mansion. They're implying that Easton benefited financially from an organ transplant. Perhaps, for example, he looked the other way at whether Jobs was qualified medically to receive the organ. Or received the house so he wouldn't bring it to anyone's attention that Jobs was doing the organ-transplant version of carpetbagging.

Jobs wasn't just "sort of" a jerk - he used his wealth to exploit the organ transplant system by having "residence" in the state with the lowest waiting list.

The doctor never should have accepted the house. The doubt cast on the impartiality of the organ transplant system and medical profession, even if there was nothing actually improper in the doctor's behavior, is trouble enough.

Re:not about murder; about improper financial bene (1)

amoeba1911 (978485) | about 2 years ago | (#40452863)

Yep... for someone like Steve Jobs, a 1 million dollar 6000 square feet home is basically a tiny shack - like his own private hospital room. It's quite obvious they got it purely to cheat the transplant system. The doctor needs to be held accountable, his actions were negligent at best and quite possibly criminal. Giving a liver to someone who has almost no chance of surviving while other younger healthier people are dying because they didn't get the liver they need. This is not good. There needs to be an investigation.

Re:not about murder; about improper financial bene (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 2 years ago | (#40453169)

Giving a liver to someone rich who has almost no chance of surviving while other younger healthier poorer people are dying because they didn't get the liver they need. This is the free market..

Corrections in italics.

Re:not about murder; about improper financial bene (3, Interesting)

muecksteiner (102093) | about 2 years ago | (#40453289)

It is of course fairly obvious the home was only purchased to game the transplant waiting list system in place in the U.S. That he was placed ahead on the list in that state by the doctor in question is pure conjecture, though.

Not everyone can receive every organ that comes up for being transplanted. AFAIK, you need a fairly complex match of genetic compatibility for an organ to be actually useable for a given patient - and even in case of a "match", you need to keep taking fairly heavy immunosupressants during the rest of your life to keep your body from rejecting it. And since I would assume that there is a separate list for each (for lack of a better word - IANAMD) genetic category that donor organs come in: maybe SJ was indeed the front of the waiting list for the liver he ended up with? Without access to the relevant medical records that question is absolutely impossible to answer.

What does surprise me is that he got a transplant at all in the first place. In Europe, advanced stage cancer patients usually are not eligible to receive any transplants whatsoever, due to the general scarcity of donor organs, and the low expected benefits of transplantation in such a patient. This seems to be different in the U.S., though, otherwise someone else would already have commented on that?

Re:not about murder; about improper financial bene (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453387)

That he was placed ahead on the list in that state by the doctor in question is pure conjecture, though.

Yes, but you have to admit the use of a shell company looks mighty suspicious.

I've sold houses before, and I've just sold them. No "shell companies" involved. Now, let's think... why might Jobs have wanted to use a shell company? Hmm... I can think of one big reason, can you?

Re: (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452905)

Steve Jobs:
Dude, if you have the money, want to live, and have been working the system your whole life( The Game of Life) then whatever happened was unfortunately acceptable.
The laws were clear, it just means he moved at a pace greased by money(means).....

Surgeon:
He did not benefit directly, but indirectly from the coincidence of circumstance and jumping on an opportunity that presented itself. The only thing in contention is: did he really accept a bribe, or can we make you think he accepted a bribe, or how to fuck the Surgeon over because we are envious of his luck.

If there is proof that he sped SJ through the list or something, then it is the only basis for exploitation of the system put in place to benefit all human beings regardless of social status, even the rich. I believe these systems also take into account how critical a patients situation is, not to mention if large donations are on the table which could be used to keep others alive on life support or fund artificial organ growth projects which in turn would be owned by the state as a result and thus abolish such debacles for future peoples.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452941)

Forgot to mention, there will always be doubt in every situation as most human beings in general still follow the animal and thus can never truly be unbiased and level handed which is the only way to maintain integrity. Not to mention we can be an envious lot when biased.

Re:not about murder; about improper financial bene (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452919)

Parent has the best explanation of the problem I've seen so far.

This certainly LOOKS corrupt, and it casts doubt on the entire system. If being rich enough means you can buy your way to the head of the line before people who could medically benefit more, than something is pretty broken.

There are a lot of questions here that need answering.

Re:This just in... (3, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#40452639)

Let the litany of Jobs worshippers now feast upon all my +1 funnies with -1 overrateds. I suppose had I made a joke about how Apple's iDied product isn't selling so well, or another iSomething joke, it'd be -1000 flamebait and they'd have to call Malda out of retirement to help rewrite the code so it'd be more resistant to having everyone on the internet simultaniously facepalm, lol, and then -1 a single comment. *maniacal laugh* Soon my pretties...

Re:This just in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452833)

Someone should call you a wambulance.

very moving (2)

amoeba1911 (978485) | about 2 years ago | (#40452447)

Let's just say Dr. James Eason was moved by Steve Jobs.... TO A BIGGER HOUSE!

Re:very moving (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452487)

Dr. James Eason, also known as... House, M.D.

Re:very moving (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452511)

YEEEEEEEAAAAAHHHHHHH

Mysterious...? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452455)

Clearly LCHG means "Livers Can't Hinder Greatness" - he wanted limited liability for his failing organ.

Yeah, so? (1)

Megane (129182) | about 2 years ago | (#40452527)

So what are you saying, it should have been turned into a "Steve Jobs Lived Here" museum with nobody living there forever after? People live in houses that other people used to live in all the time.

Don't blame me, I hit -1 slownewsday in the firehose. Now that I'm awake, maybe I should've hit -1 stupid.

it's about the prerogative of the 1%ers (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452655)

It sure starts to look like Jobs bought his way to the front of the transplant line, his life being "worth more" than the less rich people in front of him.

That's why people hate the 1%ers - they think they are worth more than the rest of us.

Re:Yeah, so? (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about 2 years ago | (#40452723)

The point is that this is very fishy business that suggests that Jobs basically bribed the head of the transplant committee with a house in order to get a transplant that he shouldn't have gotten.

Re:Yeah, so? (2)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 2 years ago | (#40452965)

The issue would be if, for example, Steve jobs secret LLC bought the house for 1.3 million and then re-sold it to the doctor who performed his surgery for 850k and that was significantly different from market rates.

From the looks of it they bought and sold for 850k on a property appraised before the 2008 crash at 1.3-1.4 mill.

What. The. Hell, slashdot? (5, Insightful)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 2 years ago | (#40452553)

Ok, so. It's a gossip piece, but it belongs on Slashdot's homepage because it involves Steve Jobs in a semi-tangential sort of way? Right, OK.

It is extremely common for people who happen to know another person to be cut a nice deal when selling property. In fact, I might even say that is normal. Jobs knew a guy, guy wanted to buy his house, Jobs sold it to him, end of story NO ONE GIVES A SHIT.

I'm not even sure what the summary is implying, and I really don't feel it is worth taking the time to find out. This isn't even "news", it's just sensationalistic crap (I'm assuming, I only skimmed the summary).

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452665)

It's implying some members of the county commission suspect the house might have been a kickback to get on top of the transplant list.

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452677)

NO ONE GIVES A SHIT.

People give a shit if Jobs was buying himself a privileged position and getting surgery before others who weren't rich bastards.

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (2)

Antipater (2053064) | about 2 years ago | (#40452691)

The implication is that Jobs found a doctor and said "Hey, want a nice house? How's about giving me a little bump up that transplant list, eh?" Corruption in medicine, playing with people's lives, and such. From TFS, it doesn't appear to be backed up by much more than some coincidental and very fortuitous timing, but it's a nice conspiracy theory.

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (1)

Daetrin (576516) | about 2 years ago | (#40452921)

Jobs certainly did seem to get his transplant rather quickly (although admittedly i'm more familiar with kidney transplants, where the wait can be up to seven years depending on where you live.) But i'm sure there are numerous ways to shorten the wait if you happen to be incredibly rich, most of them easier and more circumspect than bribing your doctor with cheap real estate.

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about 2 years ago | (#40453207)

You might feel different if your kid was waiting in line for an organ they needed to survive a lifetime, and it appeared rich dudes were cutting in line to get just a couple extra years.

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 2 years ago | (#40453425)

But, correct me if I'm wrong, there is zero evidence that happened, correct? Only innuendo and "questions"?

Maybe it's also time for Apple to answer the question of whether or not Steve Jobs liked to rape chickens? I'm not saying he did, mind you, I just think the question should be asked.*

*Note: I'm not actually asking the question, because it's stupid. Just like this story. The only point in "asking" a question like this, without actual evidence, is to incite outrage. Nothing more. I'm sure someone on the transplant list might feel differently about this story. Not because they should, but because it was designed to target their feelings against this doctor/Apple/Steve Jobs. Why? I don't know, ad revenues is my best guess. I'm just saying that Slashdot shouldn't encourage it, because "news reporting" like this, frankly, belongs in tabloids and sites like TimeCube, not on Slashdot.

Mind, if there is actual evidence that the doctor took a bribe to get Jobs pushed up the transplant list, that is a little different. It still probably shouldn't be on Slashdot, but at least I'd know it wasn't sensationalist trash designed to incite rage for no particular reason besides money (other than, possibly, attempts to ignite class warfare and/or Apple hatred. I'm fine with Apple hate, BTW, I just think people should dislike them for what they've actually done, not crap like this).

slashdot is passe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453239)

slashdot is passe. The new slashdot is the dailymail.. look what is on their front page:

'UFO' at the bottom of the Baltic Sea 'cuts off electrical equipment when divers get within 200m'

Aliens & electrical equipment... Now that is "news for nerds"

You think this is a joke.. but just recently I saw rumor about Jobs and his surgeon on slashdot. What is this, the national enquirer?

Re:What. The. Hell, slashdot? (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about 2 years ago | (#40453357)

Well the thing is, this isn't about jobs. I fully expect someone with as much money as him to want to do whatever is in his power to get himself a replacement liver....even breaking the law. I dunno about you, but I put my own health above the law and if some law was standing in the way of what I saw as something that would allow me to live longer or live normally longer, guess what, I would probably do it too.

Thats why, the rules are not for the patients, they are for the doctors, the people who make the decisions. They are the one who have final say, and the ones who need to be above reproach. This deal stinks.

It wouldn't stink so much if he paid a normal market value, or if it was a direct transfer from one wealthy man to a surgeon who did a procedure for him, after the fact. However, it was at a low price, through a shady llc, and not just the surgeon who performed the operation but, one who ultimately decided who gets what.

Just as a judge should recuse himself from a case that he is too connected with to appear impartial, this man should have avoided taking advantage of a deal that casts such obvious doubt on his impartiality.

Whether or not his motives were pure, he is tainted by the form of this deal, the whole LLC business says to me that somebody was doing something shady, though, it was probably just jobs and his accountants using some tactic to save money.

All in all... its not impossible that the doctor is telling the truth but, I think the investigation is entirely warranted, because it certainly looks shady.

I knew it (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 2 years ago | (#40452611)

First they kill Michael Jackson, then they kill Steve Jobs. And they charge a month's salary to see them for 10 minutes.

We have to get rid of these doctors from society, what good do they do?

Re:I knew it (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 2 years ago | (#40453435)

First they kill Michael Jackson, then they kill Steve Jobs. And they charge a month's salary to see them for 10 minutes.

We have to get rid of these doctors from society, what good do they do?

Roll up your sleeves and bend over.

You're about to find out ....

Re:I knew it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453585)

Except this doctor had nothing to do with Jobs' death, he actually prolonged it.

This Just In ... (1)

MilwaukeeMadAss (2521372) | about 2 years ago | (#40452649)

A large underground storage facility was located beneath a Memphis home today and it contains the largest stockpile of black turtlenecks known to man.

Who CARES! (1)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | about 2 years ago | (#40452657)

Seriously who DOES care? Odds are whatever happened wasn't illegal as it would have came out.

Re:Who CARES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453087)

Who cares? How about all the people who medically could have had a better chance at life with the organ that went to Jobs, who bought his doctor a house to look the other way about his chances of life with that organ? And we all know how that turned out.

Doctors carefully triage cases and use the available organ pool for the people who have the best chance of life if they get the transplant. Being rich does not mean your extra 2 weeks of life should outweigh the average person's extra 20 years of life.

unbelievable (1)

CAIMLAS (41445) | about 2 years ago | (#40452707)

Exactly. This isn't even tabloid level news.

Here's a clue for those who don't understand how LLCs work or why people use them: This kind of thing is done every. single. day. Rich people form LLCs and trusts to move and shelter assets and to avoid taxes. Not-so-rich people do it, too, because it's a good vehicle for keeping business costs outside personal finances. Something almost exactly like this happens all the time with everyone from the small profitable restaurant owner up through corporate middle managers and CEOs.

I know contractors who get paid through their personal corporation. They do contract work, and the payment goes from one company to another for the work. The company pays the contractor(s). There is nothing all that uncommon, and just because it involves the house of a famous dead person does not make it news.

This is why there should be a market for organs (4, Interesting)

trout007 (975317) | about 2 years ago | (#40452761)

This is the type of stuff that always happens when there is a prohibition on something. It makes the gatekeepers so powerful that people will use whatever means necessary to influence them.

Acknowledging that people own their bodies would allow them to sell parts of their bodies. Those that can be harvested while they are alive like bone marrow, kidneys, parts of the liver, would be pretty straight forward. Those that are harvested after death might involve getting a deal on life insurance if you transfer ownership of your organs to the insurance company after death, or you could will them to a family member.

This would make organs so readily available that no black market would exist.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452999)

This is the type of stuff that always happens when there is a prohibition on something. It makes the gatekeepers so powerful that people will use whatever means necessary to influence them.

Acknowledging that people own their bodies would allow them to sell parts of their bodies. Those that can be harvested while they are alive like bone marrow, kidneys, parts of the liver, would be pretty straight forward. Those that are harvested after death might involve getting a deal on life insurance if you transfer ownership of your organs to the insurance company after death, or you could will them to a family member.

This would make organs so readily available that no black market would exist.

So the logical result of this would be selling donor organs to the highest bidder (rather than signing it over to 'medical use'), in other words: only the wealthy (or well insured, if insurance companies can act as middle men - but it works out to be the same) would end up with transplant organs... Which is exactly what you appear to be against - only now it would be open and above board.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#40453123)

Which is exactly what you appear to be against - only now it would be open and above board.

Honest and less corrupt. Rather than paying off a doc and/or administrators, you'd be paying off the donor's family. Honest in that instead of ridiculous claims of treating everyone equally, they'd honestly explain its ranked by $ which is how its always been done anyway and probably always will be done.

The problem with this scheme is I see is much like life insurance related murders, you'd now have organ donation murders. Or "I hate my kids so I'll drink heavily to make sure they make no money off my liver".

One argument against changing it is we seem to be on the cusp of being able to grow our own as needed, so if we waste time and money implementing it, later generations might look back on it like we'd look back on medical leech farm legislation, WTF were they thinking, etc.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (1)

trout007 (975317) | about 2 years ago | (#40453301)

Not at all. Right now the donor gets zero compensation so there is a very limited supply. This pushes the value up which makes the people in charge of distribution very powerful. This power attracts corruption by those with the means to do it.

A market is the exact opposite. By allowing compensation to the donor there will be a vastly larger supply of organs. This will push prices down and make them more available.

Even if this wasn't the case I would still be for it because to reject the argument means that you accept that other people own your body.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (1)

asifyoucare (302582) | about 2 years ago | (#40453035)

Except that allowing a market in organs would make the suspected problem here the norm. But much worse things would happen - witness the lack of respect for life amongst the Mexican drug cartels and their ilk, and imagine what would happen if they could get tens of thousands of dollars for a person's organs.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (2)

elsurexiste (1758620) | about 2 years ago | (#40453065)

There are a few reasons for a market prohibition. The first and foremost is that it coerces the poor. Imagine someone in extreme poverty: he'll no doubt sell one of his kidneys (IIRC, it's the most required organ), permanently impairing himself.

A more reasonable way is to make organ donation compulsory after death and/or live transplants only from family members older than, say, 35.

Re:This is why there should be a market for organs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40453337)

Personally, I think this would lead to preemptive organ harvesting. Stem cells can be used to provide a better product, without all the nasty side-effects of organ rejection, or innocent, healthy people disappearing (or ending up in a political prison).

Dun dun dunnnnn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40452775)

All the summary is missing is a dramatic sound effect at the end.

LCHG, LLC was dissolved in February 2012.
DUN DUN DUNNNN

Wow. (1)

rpresser (610529) | about 2 years ago | (#40452949)

It's amazing. Just when I think Slashdot can't possibly find a subject I'm less interested in than Orbitz's decisions about what to promote to Mac users ... it does.

Why Tennessee (1)

clovis (4684) | about 2 years ago | (#40453281)

I wondered why Tennessee. Is Tennessee the first place you would go to get extremely high-risk major surgery?

This article explains the process a bit better and how it helps to have money. That is, he did beat the system by shopping around, but he did not have to bribe anyone to get to the top of the list.

http://www.businessinsider.com/how-steve-jobs-got-sick-2010-04 [businessinsider.com]

Re:Why Tennessee (1)

Cpt_Kirks (37296) | about 2 years ago | (#40453465)

Actually Tennessee, and Memphis in particular, has some of the finest hospitals in the world. The UT system, St. Judes, etc.

Nashville, too.

A lot of baiting without correlation (2)

Stickerboy (61554) | about 2 years ago | (#40453517)

While on the outside the situation has the appearance that there could have been impropriety, the appropriate thing of course is to look at the hard evidence.

Giving a sweet deal on real estate to a friend and doctor for excellent medical care is not illegal. (While I haven't received a house, I get homemade baked goods all the time.) Giving a sweet deal on real estate to a friend as a kickback for being pushed up the transplant list is highly unethical. But there's an easy way to find out: have the state medical review board take a peek at the transplant waiting list records over the time period. If Steve Jobs mysteriously moves up the list for no good medical reason, or is listed in front of other patients with more pressing need or waiting time, then you have your smoking gun. Otherwise, if everything is appropriate with the transplant waiting list, then it sounds like the system worked as designed.

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