Sunday, July 18, 2010

Talk about haves and have-nots . . .

This is a possibility I have not seen before:

"So the ideal arrangement is for the hotel to fire the lower-paid employees—simply cutting their plans is not an option since federal law requires nondiscrimination in offering health benefits—and contract for their labor from firms that employ them but pay fines instead of providing health insurance. The hotel could then provide health insurance for all the remaining, higher-paid employees. Ultimately, we could see a complete restructuring of American industry, with firms dissolving and emerging based on government subsidies."

Unlikely? Well, consider that companies have a clear economic interest in finding ways to minimize the cost of the health care legislation. Also keep in mind that companies would not necessarily have to restructure themselves to accomplish what the linked article suggests; so-called Professional Employer Organizations already exist, and their business could very likely grow under this scenario.

And so, by the stroke of a pen on March 23, the administration may well have set this country on an irreversible course toward a two-tier health insurance system - one for haves, and one for have-nots.
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