If you have access

If you have access to the Wall Street Journal, take a look at the story on page 3 in Monday’s edition — ‘Global Crossing Courted Union Leaders.’ The piece is, frankly, a touch hard to follow, partly because it’s really several stories running together. What gets lost in the shuffle of the Global Crossing story is the intertwined, but distinct, story of apparent self-dealing at Ullico (formerly known as Union Labor Life Insurance Co.). Arguably, what happened at Ullico is more troubling.

Ullico is a private life insurance company, founded and still owned by various AFL-CIO unions.

The board members of Ullico apparently had the company buy back their own stock in the company when they knew the market price of the shares was about to take a big dip. Ullico isn’t a publicly traded company, which may make it a bit different — legally at least — from your normal insider trading scenario. Still, it ain’t good.

And I hear there is real concern among union folks in DC about how far this embarrassment or scandal may spread.

Regrettably, more on this soon.