In a post I titled “Obamacare Already Hurting Businesses“, I wrote about the dire consequences already being announced. Here’s just a partial list of companies directly negatively affected by Obamacare:

  • John Deere will spend an additional $150,000,000 on health care.
  • Caterpillar will spend an additional $100,000,000 on health care.
  • Medtronic might lay 1,000 workers off.
  • Chelmsford might lay off 650 workers AND move their manufacturing operations overseas.

That’s before talking about Obamacare eliminating a tax break on the Medicare prescription drug benefit:

Mr. Reed specifically cited a change in the tax treatment of retiree health benefits. When Congress created the Medicare prescription drug benefit in 2003, it included a modest tax subsidy to encourage employers to keep drug plans for retirees, rather than dumping them on the government. The Employee Benefit Research Institute says this exclusion—equal to 28% of the cost of a drug plan—will run taxpayers $665 per person next year, while the same Medicare coverage would cost $1,209.

As awful as those things are, they’re tiny compared with this:

AT&T, the biggest U.S. phone company, joins Caterpillar Inc., AK Steel Holding Corp. and 3M Co. in recording non-cash expenses against earnings as a result of the law. Health-care costs may shave as much as $14 billion from U.S. corporate profits, according to an estimate by benefits consulting firm Towers Watson. AT&T employed about 281,000 people as of the end of January.

“Companies like AT&T, that have large employee bases, are going to have higher health-care costs and, therefore, lower earnings unless they can negotiate something or offer less to their employees,” said Chris Larsen, an analyst at Piper Jaffray & Co. in New York, who rates AT&T shares “overweight” and doesn’t own any himself.

AT&T previously received a tax-free benefit from the government to subsidize health-care costs for retirees, who would otherwise be on a Medicare Part D plan. Under the new bill, AT&T will no longer be able to deduct that subsidy.

“As a result of this legislation, including the additional tax burden, AT&T will be evaluating prospective changes to the active and retiree health-care benefits offered by the company,” the carrier said in the filing.

You can’t find a capitalist who thinks that shaving “as much as $14 billion from U.S. corporate profits” as a result of Obamacare won’t trigger the next round of layoffs. In addition to increasing health care costs, Obamacare will trigger job cuts at a time when we’ve already got 10 percent unemployment.

Yesterday, here’s what President Obama told a captive audience in Iowa City:

Leaders of the Republican Party, they called the passage of this bill “Armageddon.” Armageddon. “End of freedom as we know it.”

So after I signed the bill, I looked around to see if there any, asteroids falling or some cracks opening up in the Earth. It turned out it was a nice day. Birds were chirping. Folks were strolling down the Mall. People still have their doctors.

Mr. President, it isn’t a nice day in the heartland. Birds aren’t chirping in the heartland. People are getting laid off as a direct result of the health care legislation that you signed into law.

Meanwhile, you’re making flippant remarks about how wonderful life is. How out of touch with America are you? It’s disgusting that you, as the theoretical leader of each American, are being this flippant at a time when you’re directly causing real suffering.

How can people be free when the president of the United States, with the entusiastic support of congressional Democrats, is adding these burdens to American companies and American workers? Forgive me if I don’t see how this Democratic president and this Democratic majority in Congress is increasing individual liberties.

Quite the contrary. I see tons of proof that this Democratic president and this Democratic majority in Congress is shrinking individual liberties and making prosperity more difficult to attain.

Contrary to what President Obama claims, Obamacare isn’t creating savings for American entrepreneurs or American families. It’s creating millstones that will drown American entrepreneurs or American families.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

3 Responses to “What Obamacare Savings?”

  • Walter hanson says:

    Gary:

    It gets even funnier that what your post said. Waxman has apparently already ordered these executives to capital hill to testify about how they are lying and trying to show the American people that the bill is bad. Excuse me aren’t they obeying the law in announcing that something has happened to their profits and they have to react to it?

    Furthermore I was so mad at Obama for what he said in Iowa. To use the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor to make a comparison:

    * President Obama has looked to see if there was an attack like Pearl Harbor, but won’t see it. The Japanese hit us with 300 planes on one day. This will bill will hit us at least 50 million times (30 million new people on the system, doctors quit, the businesses cutting back on benefits)

    * President Obama said the bill passed so accept it. I seem to remember that President Roosevelt went to Capital Hill the next day and asked Congress to declare war on the Japanese. We rebuilt the sunken ships and built a whole bunch of new ones and kicked the Japanese back to Japan. The people who Obama want to cool off are acting just like the American people did on December 8.

    * The Japanese started a war and at least the leader who planned it knew that America will mobilize and eventually beat the Japanese. Obama started a war and wants to end it since he won the first major battle of it.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

  • eric z says:

    Gary, Walter, how are the health insurer shares trading these days?

    Trending up is my understanding, over the last year or so. What do you figure Wall Street understands that these other firms are not stating in generic press releases?

  • Gary Gross says:

    Health insurance stocks will drop within a couple months because the Democrats’ health care legislation was always intended to put them out of business.

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