Friday, January 13, 2006

Clear statement, Maryland to Big Corporations: We don't want you here.

The MD general assembly overrode the veto of the 'Fair Share Health Care Plan', which essentially extorts 8% of a companies HR budget to the state if that company employs over 10,000 people and does not spend 8% on health care benefits. The legislation is directly aimed at Wal Mart, the only company in the state that meets the criteria.

The logic? Well, it's unfair for the rest of us to pay for Medicare for Wal Mart employees.

The reason that logic is completely stupid? Here are a few:
  • WaL-Mart employs about 10,000 people. If NONE of them have health insurance (which isn't true), they would make up less than 2% of the people on Medicare. Of course, that assumes all of these people need insurance, and are not otherwise covered by a spouse or parent. Based on the artice, less than 1% of the people in MD without health insurance work for Wal Mart.
  • The assumption that these people would otherwise be insured is completely false. They would either not be working, or work for some other company that also does not provide health insurance
  • There is an assumption that Wal mart competitors will stop offering health insurance. This is simply unfounded. I'm willing to bet that the reason people are working for Wal Mart is that Wal Mart offers the best mix of salary and benefit available, and that means the competition is already not offering health benefits. Of course, the state won't be requiring that. Yet.

This isn't a victory for anyone. Wal Mart will now not be opening a distribution center in Maryland, not employ many more people who are now currently either un or underemployed.

Good Job!

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