There’s a superb phrase that apparently came out of the software development field that encapsulates a tremendously useful concept — “eating your own dogfood.” In brief, if you produce something and you expect people to believe in it enough to buy it and use it, you should be willing to use it yourself. The refusal of a group to eat its own dogfood is usually a good sign to stay the hell away from the product.
Which is a concept that we desperately need to apply to ObamaCare. When it was passed, apparently there was a provision that allowed employers to apply for and be granted waivers excluding them from its provisions. (I say “apparently” because it’s still not clear that anyone has actually read the whole thing. Certainly not a lot of those who voted for it.)
Well, someone did read that part of ObamaCare. And they’ve been using that provision quite a bit. In fact, as of last count, over 700 employers, with over 2.2 million employees, have sought and been granted waivers from the provisions of the law. And there are another 93,000 workers whose employers are looking to get out of having to comply with ObamaCare.
If you look over that list, you’ll see a lot of unions listed. These aren’t unions who are asking that their members be excluded. Oh, no, that isn’t the case. No, these unions — who spent millions and millions of their members money to push for ObamaCare to be passed — are asking that they not have to provide health care for their own employees.
As they’ve shown plenty of times in the past, if you want union benefits, join a union — but for god’s sake, don’t actually work for one. They tend to treat their employees far worse than any of the employers they deal with. Wouldn’t it be fun to unionize union employees? But I digress…
Anyway, back to the whole waiver situation. It speaks volumes that the groups who pushed the hardest to get this bill passed are the first in line to ask to be excluded from it. They are saying, in essence, “this is wonderful and essential for all Americans to be forced to comply with it — just not us.”
This waiver system is clearly broken — and that’s not even mentioning how the Obama administration apparently sat on releasing the latest list of recipients until after the State of the Union address. And it’s emblematic of just how screwed-up the whole ObamaCare system is.
Personally, I think that the whole ObamaCare program is so screwed-up that it should be dragged out to the nearest public green and have a catheter driven through its heart, then hanged from a tree with red tape. But that’s too much to hope for.
So, instead, let’s just look at the waiver program. This piecemeal process, with those who backed the measure being rewarded with being excluded from it, is utterly unacceptable. It’s old-fashioned quid pro quo, one of the most basic forms of corruption, coupled with a most stunning form of hypocrisy. So here are two modest proposals to make it if not fair, than at least modestly less heinous:
1) Grant anyone a waiver who asks for it. Make the whole damned thin optional for everyone, not just those who helped pass the thing (mandate and all) in the first place and have curried favor with the powers that be, but those who didn’t want anything to do with it in the first place. Think about that — those who pushed hard for the mandatory nature of this bill are the first to ask — and get — permission to be excluded from it, while those who opposed it are the ones who are being forced to comply with it.
2) No waivers for anyone. Period. If it’s mandatory for some, it’s mandatory for all — let’s start pushing 14th Amendment arguments and all demand to be treated equally under the law. No special treatment, no 2nd-class employees who don’t get the “benefits” of being covered by ObamaCare, no favored treatment for Obama administration allies who don’t want to have to live under the rules they fought so hard for.
ObamaCare was riddled with fraud and dishonesty from the outset, and it just keeps getting worse and worse and worse. At some point, we have to pass the breaking point and simply say “enough.”