24 March, 2011

Would P.T. Barnum Be Looking For You?

It’s been a couple weeks since we examined the laughingstock known as ObamaCare. And since the one year anniversary of the passage of this monstrosity was this week, it’s time to do it again.

The latest news?

One of the authors and biggest cheerleaders for ObamaCare, one Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-NY-09), now thinks that a waiver might be a good idea for his district. He might even have a better quote here than that famous one by Nancy Pelosi.

The administration needs to make this argument more forcefully. A lot of people who got waivers were … people who are our friends.

Err…yes. You’ve just summed up the problem with the waivers far more succinctly than I ever could. Giving waivers for an expensive law to your friends is not how this country is supposed to work. What about those of us working for small businesses that don’t have influential friends? I guess we’re supposed to foot the bill for the rest of you. No, thanks.

But wait, there’s more. The Obamanauts have lost Howard Schultz as well. Who is Howard Shultz? No, he’s not that CEO who wrote in the WSJ bashing Obama’s economic policies. He’s another CEO, this one of ultra-liberal Starbucks. He’s long been a backer of ObamaCare and of the Obama administration.

There's no plan that would be a perfect plan, but the intent of the bill and the heartfelt commitment to insure the uninsured is the right approach. I think as the bill is currently written and if it was going to land in 2014 under the current guidelines, the pressure on small businesses, because of the mandate, is too great.

And he’s not the only businessman complaining. How about IHOP owner Scott Womack?

Under the year-old law, Womack must provide health insurance to all full-time employees beginning in 2014. Right now, he employs nearly 1,000 full- and part-time workers and already offers insurance to his management staff. He simply does not know how he’ll generate the revenue to do more.

Womack estimates the cost of the law to his company will be 50 percent greater than his company’s earnings — in other words, beyond his ability to pay.


“If the health care reform law is not repealed or if the employer mandate doesn’t go away, we’re going to have to take drastic action,” Womack explains.

Note for you liberals out there, when an employer starts talking about having to take “drastic action” because of costs, that’s not a good thing. There’s a reason conservatives keep calling this law a “job killer”.

And let’s be honest with ourselves, too. ObamaCare can not exist without the individual mandate. It’s the lynchpin of the entire thing. You can’t offer healthcare to everyone without requiring everyone to buy insurance. If you don’t make it a requirement to have health insurance, no one will ever buy it. Why should they? They know they’ll get the coverage without it. Same for existing conditions. Until and unless your existing condition worsens to the point where you need medical treatment, there’s no need to buy insurance.

As my own Congressman, Dan Burton (R-IN-05), said yesterday:

Last year then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi famously said that we would have to pass the [health care reform] bill in order to find out what is in it.   Well, in the last year America has found out what was in it, and it is higher health insurance premiums,  fewer Medicare choices for seniors (as well as higher Medicare Part D premiums), and billions of dollars of unfunded mandates that will bankrupt the States and Hoosier small businesses; to name just a few of the problems with this law.

Still believe in this schlock? P.T. Barnum wishes he was still alive. He’d be setting up camp outside your house.

Oh, darn. I just looked it up. He didn’t actually say that. Or maybe he did. Evidence appears inconclusive. I’m gonna go back to naively believing that he said it after all.

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