The Unintended Consequences Of ObamaCare: A Lesson In Incompetence

As a follow up to my post on ObamaCare Revealed readers should see the next article served up by the Wall Street Journal that reveals that Democrats are shocked (yes shocked!) at the damage they have wrought on corporate earnings and balance sheets. In what can only be described as full on Paul Raines mode, Democrats are outraged that U S corporations are announcing anticipated losses that are the product of the cram down legislation passed last week by House Democrats. This is the best summary I have read anywhere that describes what has happened:

It’s been a banner week for Democrats: ObamaCare passed Congress in its final form on Thursday night, and the returns are already rolling in. Yesterday AT&T announced that it will be forced to make a $1 billion writedown due solely to the health bill, in what has become a wave of such corporate losses.

This wholesale destruction of wealth and capital came with more than ample warning. Turning over every couch cushion to make their new entitlement look affordable under Beltway accounting rules, Democrats decided to raise taxes on companies that do the public service of offering prescription drug benefits to their retirees instead of dumping them into Medicare. We and others warned this would lead to AT&T-like results, but like so many other ObamaCare objections Democrats waved them off as self-serving or “political.”

Perhaps that explains why the Administration is now so touchy. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke took to the White House blog to write that while ObamaCare is great for business, “In the last few days, though, we have seen a couple of companies imply that reform will raise costs for them.” In a Thursday interview on CNBC, Mr. Locke said “for them to come out, I think is premature and irresponsible.”

In other words, shoot the messenger. Black-letter financial accounting rules require that corporations immediately restate their earnings to reflect the present value of their long-term health liabilities, including a higher tax burden. Should these companies have played chicken with the Securities and Exchange Commission to avoid this politically inconvenient reality? Democrats don’t like what their bill is doing in the real world, so they now want to intimidate CEOs into keeping quiet.

Commerce Secretary Gary Locke’s comments are ridiculous. He sounds like the sour city mayor complaining about the rain pouring on the parade he has spent years planning. Here’s a question for Secretary Locke (if he can find someone to explain it to him). Where are the Enron accounting vigilanties in the Democratic caucus now that their leadership has declared war on generally accepted accounting rules? We all remember Kenny Boy. I want to know who Henry Waxman’s boy is. Who’s your boy Congressman Waxman and what does he do for you?

We are witnessing the most cynnical and dishonest behavior at work in a Congress in decades and the incumbents in the Democratic party will certainly pay for their witless, cowardly and irresponsible actions. The fools in the White House, where the lease extends beyond 2010, are ecstatic with their insolence:

After signing healthcare reform into law, agreeing to a new nuclear arms reduction treaty and moving forward with financial reform, President Barack Obama will spend the weekend at the presidential retreat at Camp David, Md.

And top White House aides say, “He knows he has” earned it.

“Best week we’ve had in a long damn time,” one senior administration official told The Hill.

Aides in the West Wing are walking with a noticeable bounce in their step now that the protracted and brutal healthcare debate is behind them.

Heh. The ObamaCare “debate”, which was reserved exclusively for the Democratic Party prior to last week’s vote, has now encountered the real world of corporate accounting and the likes of Sarbanes Oxley type disclosure, which is too rich to ignore. Corporate chieftains beholden to full disclosure mandated by progressives like Henry Waxman now find themselves summoned to his kangaroo court where they will be questioned for obeying the very laws that undermine Commissar Waxman’s political agenda. You can’t make this stuff up.

Projection of the Week...
Seattle Times: Washington Attorney General has solid case to challenge ObamaCare