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Healthcare Law Upheld

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     I dearly love hearing people say "How can I be forced to buy insurance?". Makes me wonder if they own a car that gets driven.
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    fenway -- I would encourage your friend to read this linked July 2nd article by Matthew Ygelsias in Slate: Should Small Businesses Really Fear Obamacare?

    Ygelsias states: "Put the special subsidies and the exemption together, and the result is a law that’s pretty clearly a good deal for small businesses."

    However, maybe not all businesses.  It really depends on the size and circumstances.

    For those firms with fewer than 25 employees that want to offer health benefits and with employees that earn less than $50,000 on average, Yglesias discusses the special subsidies available to them:  "You can get a tax credit to defray 35 percent of the cost of the insurance if you’re a for-profit firm, and 25 percent if you’re a nonprofit. When the law really gets rolling in 2014, those subsidies rise to 50 percent for for-profits and 35 percent for nonprofits."

    Yglesias notes that "firms with fewer than 50 employees are also exempt from the “employer responsibility” provision of the law that otherwise constitutes the biggest business burden in the legislation.The Affordable Care Act (in)famously requires that all individuals who don’t receive insurance from their employer or from a government program such as Medicare or Medicaid must buy their own insurance on a regulated exchange. Subsidies will be provided to those for whom such insurance wouldn’t be affordable."

    There's much more in his article, and I would encourage you to read it rather than my cherry picked points.  Yglesis concludes: "But viewed narrowly as a reform to the insurance market the law—and especially the controversial mandate used to enable people to get insurance without working for a large company—should serve small firms quite well."

  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    Nobody is FORCED to buy insurance. The government uses FORCE, but the effect is not to FORCE one to purchase insurance or else.

    It's a choice, that the government incentivizes, presumably for public purpose.

    Because the law relies on effective enforcement provisions which result in the loss of tax deductions, it's not effectively a tax. You don't even have to pay the FINE! But the government does not have to give you tax deductions, either!
    Don't pay your taxes and then the government will FORCE you to pay! But not without first going through due process and litigation.

    Tax deductions are just like government spending, just through the tax code. Like I said in my previous post: it's a distributional issue.
    Government sets a nominal tax rate (that's taxing). Then it goes out and puts deductions, exemptions, credits in the tax code which lower the effective rate paid, but with distributional consequences directed by the government, again, presumably for public purpose. 

    So what's the difference between government spending and tax code changes that lower effective rates?

    Tax deductions return funds, that the government has claimed, to individual private sector agents, for the purposes of allowing the private sector to decide how to spend.
    The difference between government spending vs. tax deductions is that w/ deductions, the government is not purchasing any goods and services from the private sector for public sector use.  But that's still a matter of government prerogative. In both cases, the government is distributing funds to private sector agents.

    So just as government picks who will receive funds as a result of spending decisions, the government picks those who will receive funds as a result of tax deductions.
    There's no difference here. Just a matter of distributional decision making.

    The government is both the officials on the field and the scorekeeper for the economy.

    Do A and receive B. Cross a line with a football in your hand and receive 7 points. Kick a field goal and get 3 points. Shoot from beyond the arch in basketball and get 3 points. Hit a baseball out of the park and the batter and every base-runner advances to home.

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    People who are pro Obamacare can write a story extolling its values.

    People who are against it can write a story showing the opposite.

    BOTH can be convincing.

    That's called P.R.  Both sides can, will, and are doing it.  They can make most anything look good, or bad.

    The truth is, no one knows what it will do to small businesses and the economy in general.

    I'm pretty sure of one thing:  like most big gubmint programs, it will do some good and some harm.

    My friend works six and a half days a week and sometimes more, and is a wife and a mother, so she doesn't have enough time for a lot of reading.  I'm sure she's finding out all she can about how it will affect her.  I wish her well, as I do all small business owners.
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    How long can a society sustain itself without understanding the basic logic of its monetary system?

    Deficit myths ruin everything.

    MMT offers the last defense of a way of life that makes us proud to be Americans!
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    Whether or not anyone believes it is a tax or a penalty, and I am a firm believer that it is more of a penalty, it is NOT a tax or penalty on the middle class because it is highly likely that ONLY the wealthy will not choose to accept it, either because they already have health insurance or they have none and don't want any, since they have the bucks to pay for their medical care themselves--and it is a rather small penalty, especially to the rich. The middle and lower classes will all choose it (if they don't already have health insurance) because they probably can get Federal help in paying for it, if they can't afford it themselves.  Any broadcaster or individual who hears those Republicans saying it is a tax, or penalty, on the middle class, simply has to ask "how can having health insurance at an affordable cost be considered wrong in any way?"     
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    Makes me realize that at least one branch of the government is alive and well.  Kudos to Justice Roberts.
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    I totally agree with that.  Congratulations & a BIG THANK YOU to Justice Roberts.
    Almost makes you believe in --- "With liberty and JUSTICE for All"  ----  once again.
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    LOOK! I don't care if it is a tax. The simple fact is that if we, as a nation refuse to to acknowledge the importance of our citizens health - both physical and mental - we are setting ourselves up for the next plague. Surely we can all see the possibilities of some un-detected virus getting such a hold on the population that it would be a crisis that could have been averted by simple access to general health care prevention.
    The law I want to see enacted is a simple law which makes it illegal to make a profit on health care. Can you not see how many drug commercials there are on tv followed by recalls and law suits? Take the profit out of the equation and replace it with result based compensations and research tax breaks for the out of control pharmaceutical industries.