From The Wall Street Journal:
Many small businesses are eyeing expansion—at least temporarily—now that penalties under the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate have been delayed for a year.
Nearly a quarter, or 24.4%, of small-business owners affected by the delay said they will invest in equipment or facilities with money that would otherwise have gone into complying with the health-care law, according to July’s Wall Street Journal/Vistage Small Business CEO Survey. An additional 16% of small companies plan to hire new employees, 15% expect to provide raises or other benefits for their workers and 3% are planning to lower prices to gain a competitive edge.
David Moyal, founder and CEO of 1800postcards.com Inc., a commercial printer in New York, spent roughly $1.1 million this month on two new digital-printing presses, investments he said he would have put off indefinitely had the employer mandate not been delayed.
More at the link. But the story continues on to note Mr Moyal’s business decisions, taken with the requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and when they kick in, into account. He currently offers a health insurance plan for his employees, but hasn’t been able to make company contributions to premiums since the recession began, and is hoping that the new investments will pay off in more business, so that he can make the required contributions; if it doesn’t, he’ll have to consider reducing staff to below the 50-employee threshold.
Do you like that little Obaminablecare symbol with which I’ve illustrated this post? I stole borrowed it from Karen, the Lonely Conservative, who has this article noting that Aetna is withdrawing from the Obaminablecare insurance exchange in Connecticut . . . and Aetna is based in Hartford! She had previously noted that Aetna was withdrawing from the excange in Maryland:
Lonely Conservative • •
A few Democrats have let slip that Obamacare is just the first step towards a single payer health care system. Conservatives warned that it will eventually drive insurance companies out of the market. Well, here’s the latest real world example – Aetna is bowing out of the Obamacare exchange in Maryland because the company would be forced to sell policies at a loss.
More at the link. But your Editor notes that Maryland and Connecticut are two of the more liberal and reliably Democratic states in the union Two states in which the government has plenty of reason to support the President’s health care plan, and every reason to help to make it a success, and they both have come up with systems so bad that a major health insurance company, headquartered in one of them, is saying thanks, but no thanks. You can’t blame wicked Republican opponents for this; if a company like Aetna doesn’t want any part of the exchanges, it’s because the corporate leadership recognizes that it would be a bad deal for the company, and the PP&ACA is based upon the insurance companies being successful.
Karen does tend to concentrate on the PP&ACA stories, and here’s another pretty sad one:
by Lonely Conservative • •
The federal government has had years to prepare for the roll out of Obamacare, but they seem more interested in selling it to Americans who hate it rather than protecting the security of those Americans’ private information. They have no idea if these exchanges are secure because they’re way behind on testing.
Again, more at the link.
It seems to be a common theme: the President has pushed back implementation of some sections of the PP&ACA for the very simple reason that the government, three years after the law was passed, is still not ready!
The Administration is announcing that it will provide an additional year before the ACA mandatory employer and insurer reporting requirements begin. This is designed to meet two goals. First, it will allow us to consider ways to simplify the new reporting requirements consistent with the law. Second, it will provide time to adapt health coverage and reporting systems while employers are moving toward making health coverage affordable and accessible for their employees. Within the next week, we will publish formal guidance describing this transition. Just like the Administration’s effort to turn the initial 21-page application for health insurance into a three-page application, we are working hard to adapt and to be flexible about reporting requirements as we implement the law.
Our frequent commenter ropelight questioned my early endorsement of Nancy Mace in the South Carolina Republican senatorial primary next year; I had stated, among other things, that I was supporting Mrs Mace because she has been both an employee and an employer, and that we need people whose experience is outside of government. The experience with the Infernal Revenue Service and the Department of Health and Human Services concerning the PP&ACA illustrates the problem: we have a hugely complex system, dependent upon private industry, being put together by people who, for the most part, have no real experience in private industry. I’m a reasonably talented and intelligent guy, but it would be a foolish decision to make me the Chief Executive Officer of a New York fashion house; I know virtually nothing about that business. But, at least I know something about business in general, and maybe I might not fail too badly if I could keep my mind on business and not just ogle the catwalk models. Just how much more foolish is it to put people who are not only not businessmen, but the virtual antithesis of businessmen — government bureaucrats to whom making a profit and putting together an efficient business model is exactly the opposite of what they do — in charge of trying to create an efficient and profitable business model for the health insurance industry?
It’s really pretty simple: the PP&ACA is going to fail because it was never intended to succeed — as Karen noted — and because even if some Democrats really did want it to succeed they never had the people in charge of implementation who had a remote chance of making it work.