Editorial: Obamacare, the ultimate job killer

Published on November 24, 2012 in Editorials

Most presidents don’t impact the country until their inauguration. However, president Obama took less than 48 hours after his reelection to begin the legacy of his second term. On day one, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped over 300 points, and followed that with a near 150 point drop on day two. This showed an immediate nervousness in the business community for what lies ahead. Even bigger than this though is the number of people joining the unemployment line.

By the Thursday following the election, thousands of employees faced the loss of their jobs. These layoffs transcended many industries, including the coal and healthcare fields. Here is a list of just a few of the major employers letting people go:

Welch Allyn – 275 employees to be let go

Stryker (medical device manufactuere) – 1,170 jobs to be cut from global workforce

Boston Scientific (currently shifting assets to China) – 1,200-1,400 jobs to be cut

Medtronic – Reducing 1,000 jobs

Smith & Nephew – 770 layoffs

Abbott Labs – 700 layoffs

Covidien – 595 layoffs

Kinetic Concepts – 427 layoffs

St. Jude Medical – 300 layoffs

Hill Rom – 200 layoffs

Dana Holding Corp. (an Ohio based auto parts manufacturer) – To cut $24 million from budget/labor costs

Total: ~6,000+ jobs

Of course, the latest is causing quite a stir. Hostess, maker of the ever-love Twinkie, is closing their doors and letting 18,500 employees go. This has hit America’s obese population like a sugar brick. Unfortunately, they have no one to blame but themselves and their votes. While the headlines read that labor negations are to blame, the bigger story is an uncertain economy and new taxation. Part of the increased labor cost is Obamacare, and as a result the union was asked to reduce benefits and/or employee hours. Instead, another company cannot financially succeed in a nation of increased tax burden. It appears that once again, actions, like supporting “free” healthcare, results in consequences, the reality that nothing is ever free.

It’s not going to stop there though. Other companies have already said they are working on plans to be able to afford the new regulations and taxations that come from the ironically named Affordable Care Act. Darden Restaurants which owns Red Lobster, Olive Garden, and others, is “experimenting with limiting the hours of some of its workers to avoid health care requirements under the Affordable Care Act when they take effect in 2014.”

Kroger, the popular grocery store chain, “will soon join the ranks of Darden Restaurants and slash the hours of its non-exempt (hourly) workers to avoid millions in Obamacare penalties.” “According to the source, Obamacare could result in tens of thousands of Kroger employees being limited to working 28 hours per week.”

The CEO of JANCOA, a janitorial company testified in a Congressional hearing saying that she had to consider “reducing the majority of my team members to part-time employment in order to reduce the amount that I will be penalized.”

What does this all mean? Simply by being reelected, this president has already cost thousands of Americans their jobs. Instead of building the economy back, it is getting worse.

While the goal of reforming healthcare is a noble and necessary one, statism and government control is proving to be crippling to the economy. Instead of insuring all Americans by having them gainfully employeed, we are adding thousands to the government dole, further deeping the fiscal cliff that looms ahead.

For those naysayers who insist on more government, how long is your job secure? Where is the hope of this new administration? Who will they blame for the deepening unemployment now that it is on their hands? Is the nation better off than it was four years ago? How about four weeks ago.

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