Obamacare = A Very Ugly Employment Picture

I have noted this story of a community college that is going to cut work hours for its adjunct faculty and temporary workers in order to avoid the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that the community college pay for health insurance for all of its employees. As anyone might have guessed, this is all just the beginnings of a trend:

Shortly after Nov. 6, Zane Tankel, who runs 40 Applebee’s restaurants in the New York City area, announced that his company was freezing employment and would not build any new restaurants. President Obama’s re-election, Tankel explained, meant that ObamaCare was likely to be fully implemented, costing his company millions of dollars and significantly raising the cost of hiring a worker.

Tankel’s statement prompted outrage and threats of a boycott, but he was far from alone. Already John Schnatter, CEO of Papa John’s Pizza, has announced that he would likely lay off some workers. Earlier, Schnatter said that ObamaCare would cost his business $5 billion to $8 billion annually, forcing him to increase the price of pizzas.

Meanwhile, two other restaurant chains, Olive Garden and Red Lobster, are moving many of their employees from full- to part-time work in order to avoid the law’s mandate that anyone working more than 30 hours must have insurance. An owner of 40 Denny’s in Florida, meanwhile, says he’ll add a 5% surcharge to customer bills in 2014 to cover his increased costs.

While restaurants, with traditionally low profit margins and large numbers of low-skilled, low-wage workers, are exceptionally vulnerable to ObamaCare’s costs, other business are being hit too. For example, Boston Scientific has announced that it will now lay off up to 1,400 workers and shift some jobs to China.

And Dana Holdings, an auto-parts manufacturer with more than 25,000 employees, says it to is exploring ObamaCare-related layoffs.

These, and countless other employers across the country, are not doing an impression of Montgomery Burns. They are simply responding to economic reality.

(Via InstaPundit.) Of course, it ought to go without saying that no one with the least bit of understanding when it comes to economics should be surprised by any of this.

  1. kylez
    Mark Stewart

    Paul DeRocco: I don’t think Obama is surprised, either. His plan from the start was to create the conditions where a single-payer system would be unstoppable. This seems like a good first step. · 21 minutes ago

    Agreed, wait until the Democrats begin bashing the slimy businesses for unpatriotically avoiding their duty to their employees.  They will reluctantly decide that only the government can do the job, and there will be plenty of field examples in the national mind to support this conclusion. · 4 hours ago

    yeah, “reluctantly”.

  2. Pejman Yousefzadeh
    C

    They’ve already started bashing businesses.

    kylez

    Mark Stewart

    Paul DeRocco: I don’t think Obama is surprised, either. His plan from the start was to create the conditions where a single-payer system would be unstoppable. This seems like a good first step. · 21 minutes ago

    Agreed, wait until the Democrats begin bashing the slimy businesses for unpatriotically avoiding their duty to their employees.  They will reluctantly decide that only the government can do the job, and there will be plenty of field examples in the national mind to support this conclusion. · 4 hours ago

    yeah, “reluctantly”. · 18 minutes ago

  3. Lavaux

    I recall Obummer using the phrase “economic patriotism” to describe the  willingness to pay higher taxes to move the nation “forward”. So would “economic treason” describe the unwillingness to pay higher taxes or the withholding of private property from allocations beneficial to the state? Perhaps, and this promises trouble.

    Since Citizens United, the left has treated us to increasingly insane denunciations of corporate personhood.  Corporations are not people, lefties rave, so they must not enjoy the right to free expression or religious freedom (seriously – the DOJ makes this argument when defending the HHS regulation against corporate adversaries). So it’s no stretch to go one step further and claim that corporate entities do not enjoy the right of compensation for takings.

    Why shouldn’t the state plunder corporate entities on behalf of favored constituencies? After all, if you’re sick enough in the head to argue that groups of people mustn’t enjoy the rights that each person in the group enjoys, then this would seem a fine proposition to you. Another fine proposition would be an omission nuisance theory claiming that by not hiring when they can, corporations are causing economic hardship for which they must compensate the people.

  4. Garrett Petersen
    Pejman Yousefzadeh: Of course, it ought to go without saying that no one with the least bit of understanding when it comes to economics should be surprised by any of this.

    And yet, when I cited Obamacare as a reason for the continued slow recovery to a table full of econ MA students, they all seemed confused.

  5. Richard Stewart

    Garrett, a question: which school of economics has dominated the education of the students you mentioned? Keynesian? (It sure wasn’t the Austrian school, from the sound of it…)

  6. Paul DeRocco

    I don’t think Obama is surprised, either. His plan from the start was to create the conditions where a single-payer system would be unstoppable. This seems like a good first step.

  7. Frederick Key

    Yep. Right here. 29 hours a week. Not a minute more. Have to scramble to make up the rest of the time with other work. No sick days, no vacation, no personal days, no snow days, no hurricane days. Had hoped a Romney election would change the picture. Aaaaaaand there we are.

  8. Mark Stewart
    Paul DeRocco: I don’t think Obama is surprised, either. His plan from the start was to create the conditions where a single-payer system would be unstoppable. This seems like a good first step. · 21 minutes ago

    Agreed, wait until the Democrats begin bashing the slimy businesses for unpatriotically avoiding their duty to their employees.  They will reluctantly decide that only the government can do the job, and there will be plenty of field examples in the national mind to support this conclusion.

  9. Joan of Ark La Tex

    I wonder where the first riot would start? Not that I am looking forward. Hungry and angry is not a good combination. Looks like a good time to set up an international recruitment company. Would be odd to see Americans hired in droves in India and China on local terms. We already have tonnes of European and American expats in Singapore on local terms. All of them want to be paid in Singapore Dollars, which is a lot stronger than the USD. 

  10. Mark Stewart

    I’ve really been trying to figure out if there’s ever been a previous time in American (or other) history where the ruler’s ambition was to destroy the economy to make dependence on the government more acceptable.

  11. Liberty Dude

    I think it more likely that Obama honestly believes that the laws of economics and reality will bend to his will.  Much like the viking King Cnut who placed his throne on the beach, ordering the tide not to come in, he will be dissapointed. 

    It would be most horrifying to have a therapy session with Obama.  The amount of self delusion would surely be unbelievable.

    Mark Stewart: I’ve really been trying to figure out if there’s ever been a previous time in American (or other) history where the ruler’s ambition was to destroy the economy to make dependence on the government more acceptable. · 5 minutes ago

  12. Liberty Dude

    Incidentally, I’m reading through this book: http://www.amazon.com/Obamacare-Wrong-America-Constitutional-ebook/dp/B004GB0OMS/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

    The law so blatantly ignores the facts of economics that I cannot see how it will stand.  Even the most hardcore democrat will be unable to contort himself to avoid admitting it’s a complete failure; I would guess within 5 years.

  13. ConservativeWanderer
    Liberty Dude: Incidentally, I’m reading through this book: http://www.amazon.com/Obamacare-Wrong-America-Constitutional-ebook/dp/B004GB0OMS/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

    The law so blatantly ignores the facts of economics that I cannot see how it will stand.  Even the most hardcore democrat will be unable to contort himself to avoid admitting it’s a complete failure; I would guess within 5 years. · 5 minutes ago

    It’s on my wishlist (man, my wishlist is growing…) For a good Kindle single — readable with Kindle for PC, I believe — try First, Do No Harm: The President’s Cousin Explains Why His Hippocratic Oath Requires Him to Oppose ObamaCare. It’s only $2.

  14. Astonishing
    Paul DeRocco: I don’t think Obama is surprised, either. His plan from the start was to create the conditions where a single-payer system would be unstoppable. This seems like a good first step.

    The first comment is so exactly right that it leaves little more to say.

    It’s all about creating dependency, and then claiming credit for being kind, caring, and generous by taking from those who aren’t yet dependent and giving  to the ones they’ve made dependent.

    Other than dependency, progressivism creates nothing. It slowly destroys things–like healthcare, local public schools, free enterprise, families, religion–and survives by feeding off the dying carcasses.

  15. Eeyore

    Speaking as a member of the U6 underemployed, and well over 55 to boot, this edges toward the “nail in the coffin” point in certain sectors of the job outlook world.

  16. BlueAnt
    Mark Stewart: I’ve really been trying to figure out if there’s ever been a previous time in American (or other) history where the ruler’s ambition was to destroy the economy to make dependence on the government more acceptable.

    Happens all the time in history, usually by a ruler more intent in securing power for a faction or dynasty than in preserving the order of the nation.

    Coincidentally, I’m going back over Gibbon’s History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire this week.  In the face of failing virtue and lapsed discipline, the various emperors tried to make specific classes dependent on handouts from the state, in the person of the emperor himself.  Depending on who was seen as the dominant power, this might mean the legions, the Praetorian guards, the senate, or the people of the capital city itself.

    It is the curious quirk of progressives that although they follow historical examples, they generally seek to bind dependents to the state, instead of to their particular faction.  Most likely, the idea is that progressives and their technocrats are the natural administrators of the state.

  17. MJBubba

    This is why Obamacare was phased in.  Some of the bill’s authors knew that their marxist plan would kill the economy; they made sure the real pain would not happen until after the reelection.

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