Now that that’s over—back to some amateur wonking.
Over the weekend, I heard one of the talking heads, I think it was P. Buchanan, though it might have been some other assclown, I’m not sure, call health care reform a “jobs killer.”
I can’t tell you how often something is said regarding public policy that makes me go “zoinks” like Shaggy. This of course is one of them.
The only jobs in danger as a result of health care reform are those of HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANY BUREAUCRATS. Health care reform, however, would be a boon to entrepreneurship and innovation in these Untied States. And I think that’s exactly what they’re afraid of.
The current system is a fiefdom, and your average fat cat is okay with that. It keeps the labor market scared and steady. There’ll be no Pullman strike so long as employers are in charge of the health and wellness of the workers and their kids, and certainly, there won’t be any of those worker bees striking out on their own.
Imagine for a moment that we lived in a country with a moral, decent health care system instead of the evil, noxious one we seem to be willing to put up with now. Imagine how much more creative you could be regarding earning a living. Starting your own business would be a far less daunting proposition. Nor would part-time work. If you opted to live frugally so you could live on a 20-hour workweek, so be it. If you opt to work retail part-time and to run your own web-monkey business and to write the great American novel, your options are wide open. Never again would you feel obligated to chain yourself to a desk or a conveyor for 40-60 hours a week. Your health care would be completely untethered from your employment, which would give you, as a worker bee, more power and more freedom in the workplace.
This, I think, is why the fat cats get sweaty chins over this shit.
And it’s unfortunate, because the flexibility I’ve described is exactly what our economy requires.
What would unemployment and underemployment numbers look like if Americans felt more empowered to craft jack-of-several-trades careers? If job seekers didn’t feel absolutely obligated to find full-time work with bennies? If you could work 15 hours at Starbuck’s and 20 as a Geek Squad geek and consider yourself fully employed? You don’t reckon those numbers might dip a little?
Universal health care empowers labor. If you’re not a CEO, then it empowers YOU. It takes power and wealth potential out of the hands of upper and middle management and distributes it to you. That’s why billions of dollars have been spent to kill true reform. They like the labor market just the way it is, with you tethered to your desk and terrified of losing your status as a full-time worker bee. Sadly, the longer we retain a health care system that is madly driven by profit, the longer this economy will remain more about shuffling paper than about making things, hopelessly addicted to bubble economics.
The real jobs killer is our broken, feeble health care system. And there is nothing in the now-gelling law that is going to fix it.