In next month’s copy of “DUH!” magazine…

the lead article will be this gem:

The share of Americans without health insurance is dropping to the lowest levels since President Barack Obama took office, but sign-ups under his health care law lag among Hispanics — a big pool of potential beneficiaries.

Wow!  When you use the power of government to force people to do something, they do it!  Alert the press!

The Affordable Care Act tries to make health insurance affordable by offering means-tested subsidies and tax credits to households so they can make their payments for monthly health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket health expenses like deductibles and copayments for medical services.

This assistance is means-tested because higher-income households get less assistance than lower-income households. As a household’s income rises, it has to pay more for the same coverage.

Actually, most of the enrollees aren’t signing up for health insurance because they are afraid of the penalties for not signing up.  They are signing up because someone else will be paying the price for it.  That’s why senior citizens and people with a pre-existing condition are signing up.  And the push is on to get more third-world socialists Democrat voters Hispanics to sign up.

This whole Obamacare thing is a huge mess, most of which has nothing to do with healthcare or health insurance.

To put it another way, even if the health insurance subsidies in the Affordable Care Act had been a specific dollar amount that was not phased out with household income, the law would still act as a tax on employment because most workers could not get the assistance during the months they were at work.

This new implicit employment tax will apply to tens of millions of workers who are offered health insurance on their job and to millions of non-employed persons who are considering a position that offers coverage.

(The new employment tax also changes the types of jobs that are created and accepted by workers, but this effect does not prevent the law from reducing employment, as Trevor Gallen and I explain).

***

But in a recent paper, the Congressional Budget Office has joined me in explaining that it’s not just the implicit income tax that will contract the labor market. As the paper puts it, “The loss of subsidies upon returning to a job with health insurance is an implicit tax on working,” adding that the effect of the new tax is “similar to the effect of unemployment benefits” (see Page 120).

Once we consider that the new law has an employer penalty, too, the labor market will be receiving three blows from the new law: the implicit employment tax, the employer penalty and the implicit income tax. Regardless of how few economists acknowledge the new employment tax, it should be no surprise when the labor market cannot grow under such conditions.

Which is what the Democratic Socialists in Congress want: more people who are unemployed or working fewer hours who have to rely on their most gracious overlords in the Capitol for their sustenance.

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Categories: Healthcare, Obamacare, Propaganda, Winter is coming

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