Its worth considering why Republican
donors powers-that-be have such a deep, implacable opposition to Obamacare. Sure it meant higher wealth taxes and the risk the government might actual do something right with a broken (ahem “free”) market. But those alone don’t account for the visceral, violent, vituperative, vigor of their vexation.
They hate Obamacare for loosening of the bonds of wage slavery…
Obamacare’s foundation is a (reasonably) functional & fair individual healthcare market. It un-picked the (totally arbitrary and stupid) link between healthcare and employment. Did it ever make sense to tie a universal, social need to the vagaries of education, business cycles, and luck? It didn’t and still doesn’t.
What’s wrong with breaking that link? People became a little less afraid. Losing or quitting that job at BigCo becomes a little easier. To become self-employed ( like your truly). To start up a company. Or whatever. Obamacare took away a fear that helped keep many chained to their desks.
Consider the hidden coercion in the viral tweets of this Google Ventures partner who relied on Google’s healthcare plan to care for his desperately sick son until he dies at age 11.
We focused on giving him a happy life instead of bankruptcy, GoFundMes, or taking second or third jobs that would take us away from him. Even then, our lives were upended. I wanted to start a company, or join a very early stage startup. I could not risk losing coverage. Nor could I purchase it myself due to his preexisting condition. Even the 18 months of COBRA scared the hell out of me. When a family member is this severely sick, even the tiniest chance of going without health coverage is terrifying and means bankruptcy
This situation is particularly awful and heartbreaking, but we have all been stalked by that “tiniest chance of going without health coverage.” That gnawing fear kept a lot of people at their desks. Rowing away below-decks and not causing a fuss.
In this case, Google Ventures hung onto his services and the American economy never got to see whatever company he might have started. He was a well-paid wage slave and Google is hardly an ogre, but that still leaves the score at “BigCo – 1, Free market Individual – Zero.”
BigCo likes their workers afraid. Beholden to a BigCo benefits department that’s negotiated a better deal (from another BigCO). A deal some puny SmallCo or individual can’t get. Because BigCo doesn’t have to try so hard if it stacks the deck in its own favor….
No wonder the plutocrats are trying so hard to roll back Obamacare. It empowered the individual, the entrepreneur, the little guy. Those people have their place – in front a flag & amber waves of grain in the the
Koch’s Republican’s TV ads. But they don’t actually have a place in the Koch’s Republican party. BigCo plutocracy is a cozier, safer place without them. And thus without a functioning individual market for a universal need on fair and socially beneficial terms.
And yes, I’m a little annoyed they are working so hard to take away my healthcare. I wish more of my (mostly employed) friends would figure out Obamacare isn’t just for poor people… Its for them too.
Its worth thinking about what happens if you decide to step out on your own. Or if that next jobless stint goes past 18 months… Sort’ve like this former Republican congressman figured out… Call your congresscritter.