The Ass With Ears And His Ali Baba Thieves

Ilana Mercer, August 10, 2012


IdiotCare, aka ObamaCare, kicks in once a company is 50 people strong. In a word, as the business begins to grow. The costs imposed by the healthcare mandate compel small business to duck-and-dive so as to stay alive.

In a televised interview, Kari DePhillips, the co-owner of a small PR firm, explained how the health-care law would impact her fledgling enterprise, and what she was doing to stay in business. (Small business, incidentally, is already adept at negotiating the legislative impositions of affirmative-action laws.)

DePhillips, of The Content Factory, told Fox News’ Gerri Willis that she is “scrambling” to comply with the mandate, for she must provide employees with healthcare or face fines. For this plucky woman, the year 2012 will mark the first time the cost of healthcare per employee “broke the $10,000 mark”! “Multiply that by 50,” and this entrepreneur is in hock to the tune of $500,000.

Unless she curtails her ambitions, those are the additional costs America’s Ass With Ears (Barack Obama) will be imposing on Mrs. DePhillips. Suitably, hiring “fewer people or hiring in a different capacity” were two of the options explored on “The Willis Report.”

The first alludes to part-time, “1099 contractors.” Moving to the state of New Hampshire, as part of the “Free State Project”—and in the faint hope that the Granite State will nullify the Affordable Care Act—is another option DePhillips intended to explore.

Unmentioned was the incorporation option. Create a new business, at considerable costs, each time your company reaches 49. As this is hardly a viable option, it is best just to stay small. “I’m a 1099er,” confirms a British reader. “My customers all split their businesses up years ago to stay under 50. Might’ve been the Family Leave Act along with a bunch of other legislation lumped in with it.

Indeed, Britain has morphed into a nation of sheep and shopkeepers, whose vaulting ambitions were on display during the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics. I am referring to the song, dance and Hosannas the host country gave to its National Health Service, or NHS.

Like the Europeans and the English, Americans will have to learn not to shoot for the sky. In 2006, I visited The Netherlands, one of the more free-market countries on the continent. Shops did not open, on Monday, until 11:00 a.m., to conservethe labor force, I was told. Expensive merchandize was kept under lock-and-key; customers treated like potential thieves. The supermarkets—sporting a small, expensive selection of produce and products—made a visit to Costco as invigorating as smelling salts after a fainting spell.

Wait until our businesses look like Europe’s: modest, meager and costly, for lack of cutthroat competition. But then, Americans will blame the victims and look to Obama or his replacement for yet more regulation.

Speaking of idiots, the bloggers at the Washington Post are perplexed over recent ObamaCare-related research, which revealed that doctors are not rushing to enlist in the healthcare Gulag under contruction. WaPo bloggers remind me of the pinheads behind the sort of “scientific” research that is still, small mercies, lampooned in the news. You know the kind. “A controlled study found that men were more attracted to beautiful older women than to their ugly, young counterparts. (Howard Stern, before Sirius, cited this “science” on air.)

The findings that seemed to have caught WaPo badly off- guard were published this week in the journal Health Affairs. Accordingly, a state-by-state survey, looking at doctors’ willingness to accept Medicaid patients, found that “more than three in ten doctors – 31 percent – said no,” they would not be accepting new Medicaid patients.Our wide-eyed correspondents were shocked—shocked!—over such unintuitive outcomes.

“That could mean that the states with the highest likelihood of expanding Medicaid might be those with the lower reimbursement rates – and fewer doctors willing to accept these patients by proxy.”

More Alice-in-Wonderland wonderment followed in quick succession. California has a problem! “1.8 million residents are expected to gain coverage – but fewer than 60 percent of providers accept new patients in the program.”

The WaPo conglomerate concluded with a truly Homeric “D’oh!”: “Prior evidence suggests that physicians’ acceptance of Medicaid patients will increase as Medicaid payment rates increase.”

In its incurable statism and cretinism combined, mainstream press is unbeatable. Essentially, the solution to doctors’ lack of will to work for free is hiding in… Ali Baba’s magic cave. Say “Open Sesame,” and The Affordable Care Act will provide, assures the Washington Post. For “the law increases Medicaid reimbursements for primary care doctors to match those of Medicare providers.”

Yes, behold the gold!

Since, of course, there is no bottomless pot of money to compensate for incentives perverted, this added interventionism will invariably lead to the socialization of the means of production. In the case of the physician caught in the maelstrom of Medicaid, expect doctors to be conscripted incrementally in the employ of those who claim their services for free.

August 10

CATEGORIES: Barack Obama, Business, Europe, Healthcare, Socialism