cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
Okay, I lied just to get you to look; because, not many people read when I write on this topic...even though it is critically important!
This is really about Wisconsin and its plan to require all small businesses (50 or fewer employees) to have health insurance.
I am a small business person and I do provide health insurance. I don't want to be forced to do that, since I might be unable to stay in business someday if that were to be a requirement.
It is bad enough that Wisconsin would tell me I have to do this, but it is also going to ultimately tell me what plan I have to subscribe to in order to provide the required coverage. I will be forced to buy my health insurance through something called BadgerChoice and a new concept called a 'connector'. Massachusetts has been using a 'connector' for a couple of years; that plan has exacerbated the shortage of primary care doctors, has driven many insurance brokers out of business and has been short of money since its inception (this leads to rationing of care, by the way).
As I drive through Germantown, I see a bunch of what are called 'small businesses'. I recognize that there are more employees employed by small businesses in Wisconsin than are employed by big business. I am among the roughly 50% of small businesses that are able to provide health insurance and I do that because it is good for my business and for my employees...and therefore for my customers.
There have been rumors circulating about a new small business health plan that was being touted in very quiet sessions using a power point show that had been designed by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services that is now run by Ms. Karen Timberlake who obviously gets her marching orders from Governor Jim Doyle. The Business Journal published an article today that discusses this program. I know enough people in the benefits industry to have heard about this several months ago, and dreaded the day that it gained enough steam to break out into the light of day...at least partially...since there are a lot of things that we're not yet being told.
By the way, Ms. Timberlake is quoted in this article as saying, "I would like to avoid having small businesses opt out if they already have a good deal. Otherwise, the program will only have high-risk participants and insurance will still be unaffordable." That is why I said that we'll be forced to join this plan.
This is one of the 'great benefits' of the new Democrat-controlled state government. They can make this happen without regard for whether or not it is a good thing. They have wanted this for a long time, and by golly, they're going to have it now that they are in absolute power. They need some "Pass Go & Collect $200" cards from the Feds and that will happen, if not already in place, because the Dems control that level of government, as well. We voted for change, and we're gonna' get it whether we like it or not.
What is worse is that this is being cobbled together in the new state budget so that it will not be a stand-alone bill that can be debated in public. This is the same state budget that now has to find ways to handle a $5.4 billion funding shortfall. Tell me what comes to mind when you see this great new program being foisted on the small businesses in Wisconsin at the same time we have a huge hole needing to be filled?
On top of tax increases, there will be more and more vacant store fronts and more and more people unemployed; and it will be able to be traced directly to this garbage.
How appropriate that this would surface just as we prepare to "stuff" our turkeys. Those aren't the only things being "stuffed".