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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Some Companies Resorting To Extremes To Dodge Obamacare

Some Companies Resorting To Extremes To Dodge Obamacare

For millions of Americans, all they really want for Christmas is decent health care coverage. It’s a wish they’ve repeated over and over, and now it will come true. Obamacare has withstood the legal and political onslaught of its enemies. On January 1, 2014 — just over one year away — it will arrive.

Americans of all ages, healthy and sick, will join their counterparts in every other advanced nation by having access to affordable health insurance. Hallelujah.

Joyous good tidings, indeed. But lurking in the background, like a modern-day Ebenezer Scrooge about to snatch the last lump of coal from Bob Cratchit’s pitiful warming fire, are some of the nation’s largest employers of low-wage workers plotting to make their employees’ lives harder.

Think it’s tough getting by on $10 per hour? Just wait until corporate executives finish slashing the hours of their restaurant, hotel and retail workers to under 30 per week. That’s the plan. By slighting workers the hours they need to make any kind of decent living, employers will be able to dump their health insurance obligations under Obamacare onto taxpayers.

In the most high-profile case, Darden Restaurants, the Orlando-based owner of Olive Garden, Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse, announced that it was testing a plan to deny workers full-time schedules; however, the public outcry over such a policy forced the company to back down. Darden told the Orlando Sentinel in October that keeping employees at 28 hours a week was one possible way to “address the cost implications health care reform will have on our business.”

Under the Affordable Care Act, beginning in 2014, employers with 50 or more full-time employees must provide affordable health insurance to their workforce or pay a penalty of up to $3,000 per worker. The loophole is that the rules don’t apply to part-time workers, defined as someone who works less than 30 hours on average per week.

For instance, Pillar Hotels & Resorts, a company that controls hundreds of franchise hotels, including Sheraton and Holiday Inn, was reported by the Wall Street Journal to be embarking on a plan to hire more part-time workers to limit health care costs. CKE Restaurants, Inc., the parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, also told the Journal that it is now hiring part-time workers to replace full-timers who have left. And these are just the companies who are willing to fess up.

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61 responses to “Some Companies Resorting To Extremes To Dodge Obamacare”

  1. Obviously the solution to the problem (which for many of you is simply stated as provide health care insurance to everyone) is to ahh screw it…you’re all going to wait until everything comes crashing down around your ears.

    Enjoy the dive over the fiscal cliff, there’s rocks at the bottom.

  2. Corporations have been cutting corners to reduce operating costs and increase profits for decades. The difference now is that they must make adjustments before Obamacare takes effect or they will not be allowed to make them afterwards. Needless to say, there will be ways to circumvent Obamacare, and you can bet many employers will expand their tendency to hire temporaries and part timers to avoid providing their employees healthcare coverage.

    Their priority is not employee satisfaction or moral imperatives, but the Almighty dollar.

    • Michael Blank says:

      I feel all of these tactics will backfire, with social media today, I am confident these Compines that choose to cheat the system will only get away with it for just a year or so, the backlash will shame them into doing the right thing eventually.

    • tobyspeeks says:

      I think a good portion of their unwillingness to cooperate is also their hatred for Obama. Cutting hours is equally much of a tactic to get the general public to dislike Obama as it is to fill their pockets with even more of the almighty dollar. But as Michael Blank said, their attack on American workers may last a little while, but really it’s dead in the water before it even begins.

      • I am a Democrat and an Obama supporter, but I would not go that far. Companies have been using temporary and part time workers to lower operating costs, increase profits, and remain competitive for decades. The danger is that they may increase that practice in anticipation of Obamacare to reduce the burden of healthcare. The cost of the benefit packages offered by most U.S. corporations is around 40%, and healthcare coverage accounts for a big chunk of that. The corporation I worked for (I have been retired since 2001) was constantly trying to cut corners to exceed shareholder expectations as far back as 20 or 30 years ago. What is happening is not new and, quite frankly, I don’t think it has anything to do with the fact that many CEOs hate Obama. For them it is always a matter of dollars and cents.

  3. WhutHeSaid says:

    Time to close the loophole. If corporations doing business in America can’t seem to do right by Americans, then it’s time to enact a law that compels them to do so, like banning more than a certain percentage of part time employees. If this drives them out of the US — good riddance. Let them try their luck doing business alongside Herman Cain — selling their 9-9-9 pies in U-Becky-Becky-Becky-Stan.

    • Lisztman says:

      I sure hope the loophole can be closed…

      Re banning “more than a certain percentage”… this is tricky. McDonald’s, e.g., (No I DON’T have data. Sorry. I wish I did.) hires lots of part-timers who actually WANT to work p-t. Kids who pick up a breakfast shift for two hours before school. Or a dinner shift between school and homework. Moms who work a lunch shift while the kids are off at school. We do not wish to hurt them, or the McD’s who is not at fault in my sample case. Perhaps it could be treated by physical location, which would drop a typical McDs to much smaller numbers.

      I then see Wal-Mart “breaking itself up” so that the Housewares Dept, the supermarket Dairy Dept, and Baby Clothes Dept suddenly become “separate companies” and eligible for small-employer rules. There’s no limit to the games big corporations, especially retail, will play. Wal-Mart competes on, their whole advertising campaign runs on, low prices. Which they can afford because some of the “low prices” rides on the backs of the workforce.

      I wish the average shopper were sufficiently sensitive to walk his/her wallet elsewhere.

      • WhutHeSaid says:

        Perhaps some businesses would go to extremes to defeat health care, but that too can be cured. Perhaps we should just amend Obamacare to NOT excluded ANY employees. I’m not against free market principles, but there is a limit to how far pure capitalism can run without some responsibility to the society that enables business success. Nothing cures unmitigated greed faster than giving said Scrooge the option of either ‘giving’ or having it ‘taken’.

        This type of responsibility to the society that is hosting a given business used to be a primary function of labor unions, but we’ve seen a real attack on unions in the last few decades. It’s really a balancing act between the free market and social responsibility, but when some companies get too far down the path of labor ‘usury’, then by all means it’s time for society to step in. Americans have that power if they choose to exercise it, and any business that doesn’t like it can move to some other country and let new businesses who have a bit more social responsibility take their place.

      • roncv1 says:

        Mr Lisztman…your last line “says it all”.
        I vote with my wallet…I don`t go to wall mart.
        We live in a nation of free enterprise…and free choice.
        With a little effort [read the weekly ads], I can buy the same things offered at WallMart, on sale {usually for less} at union stores. More importantly, I am supporting enterprizes that offer living wages, health benifits , and retirement programs.
        With what wall mart pays, and the lack of benifits….the prices should be half of what they are.
        I know many [including union members] who love wall mart….disgusting…myopic…

    • Ed says:

      So you don’t realise who the “BIG GUYS” bought and PAID FOR. Our CONGRESS!

  4. This country deserved 9-11. It took me a lifetime to come to this painful realization. Corporate culture is our culture, and no human or natural catastrophe could possibly exceed what justice would mandate.

    • charleo1 says:

      Please measure your responses. Yes, the corporations are, on the whole, driving this
      Country, and it’s people into poverty. But Americans are only now beginning to see
      the danger of these behemoths. Too big to fail, or tax, they have bought, and corrupted
      our local, state, and federal governments. But, they have no allegiance to any country.
      Nor to freedom, or to totalitarianism. Not even to Capitalism, or a free market economy. Global grazers, they follow the cheap labor, the least regulation, where the payoffs to governments controlled by a powerful few, produces the highest profits. It’s what they
      do, wherever they do business. In your town,, China, Bangladesh, or Waterloo, Iowa.
      Americans get it. Or are on the path to getting it. But when you open up with, “This
      Country deserved 9/11.” You sound worse than a bought, and paid for T-Party politician,
      selling out an information starved constituency, too clueless to see what’s happening.
      Our challenge is to inform them. And if we sound like terrorist, for God’s sake…..
      Well, you get my point.

    • Lisztman says:

      WHAT in the name of anything could lead you to say we “deserved” 9-11? I don’t know where you live — but my cubicle was 1.5 miles from New York City Ground Zero.

      Your comment was totally irresponsible. Totally off-topic. Totally insensitive. And totally asinine. As are you.

  5. Bonnie says:

    Please keep publishing the names of the companies that are doing this so we can boycott them! Also publish the names of companies that are stepping up to their responsibilities so we can patronize these responsible folks. If companies don’t pay for the insurance, we as taxpayers will have to cover it….

    • tcburch says:

      You will be paying for it one way or the other…either directly, or indirectly through the increase in the price of goods.

    • onedonewong says:

      Unless they take food stamps the possibility of you or anyone from this website will be patronizing them is slim to nothing

  6. i am a part time union employee and in my compony they started doing that keeping everyone at/under 29 hours a week. the guy has more money then he knows what to do with and still looks for more.

  7. Charles says:

    I have sold insurance for over 38 years. The reason that OBAMA care was forced on us. Insurance compines , blue cross, human , atena,and many others insurance compines. Deined a claim at least 3 times. Insured will final give up. Keep the money and not pay the claim.Claim that should have been paid. Hide behind the prexsisting condition clause. Because of all the insurance compines greed. Now we can thank insurance compines for OBAMA care. At least on the bright side. Now these insurance will have to pay there claims now.Not hide behind there perexsisting clause anymore.Wal mart is no better than the insurance compines. Keeping there empolyees below 30 houres to avoid OBAMA care. Well watch Obama care change that lope hole. Include part time workers to. Fix wal mart….. Just like they fix all the health insurance compines . FOR NOT PAYING THERE CLAIMS. AND HAVING THE RULE OF DENIED A CLAIM AT LEAST 3 TIMES.INSURED WILL FINAL GIVE UP. . Thatwhat they would do behind close door.

  8. carolknows says:

    obamacare was a mismatched mess of ‘little for everyone’ compromise. now get serious. national healthcare is the only answer. and the businesses that are screwing over their workers? boycott them. i continue to wonder how these people who patronize walmart to save their 10 pennies on a purchase can’t seem to understand they are paying at the backend while walmart continues to deceive working americans. dominos can kiss my a** with it’s denial of family-planning benefits just cause the pres is soooo catholic. he can afford a zillion kids/most people can’t.

  9. Charles says:

    Aflac is just as bad when it is time to play there claims to. When it come to there so called disability policy/. Put threw the ringer not to pay a claim.

    • Charles says:

      Did you know that Wal mart offered Aflac benfit for many years. All of sudden quite offering Aflac . Because of the way there claims where being paid. Went to American Heritage life Insurance Company.. Wal mart went DUCK HUNTING.. Got rid of the DUCK.. Joined another insurance compines.Ah!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Elaine says:

    time for a nationwide strike

  11. Tier it. 0-10 hrs a week. 25%, 11-20 hrs a week 50%, 21-30 hrs a week 75% and 31-40+ 100%. Then they will not be able to avoid it at all. They could even change the tier based on the company size.

  12. Greg Vargo says:

    Thats why we need medicare for all ( Healthcare For All) . Lets fix Healthcare once and for all.
    Whats worst, your company dening you, the insurance companying dening you or medicare dening you.

  13. dynadude50 says:

    Companies like Walmart should be boycot. They suck the life out of small business, lower our expectations of quailty, suppliment their labor costs by forcing workers to depend on government assitence and destroy U.S. manurfacturing by buying most of their goods from china.
    We are destroying the middle class in exchange for slightly lower pricing, then we complain that there are no jobs.
    Stop shopping at these big box stores and you will see small mom and pop stores spring up with better quailty products and more varity. It is up to each one of us to make a change and stay committed to it.

    • jointerjohn says:

      Walmart built a store in my small city in 1996. They took 1 1/2 million dollars in city tax dollars for infrastructure construction in support of their store, then proceeded to refuse to hire a single local construction worker for the building of their store. Brought them all in from neighboring states with “Right to Work For Less” laws. When Walmart came we had seven supermarkets geographically spread around the City, today there are only two, and not convenient to where working people live. When Walmart came we had three locally-owned electronics/appliance stores, today zero. I have never been inside my local Walmart and there will be ice-skating in hell before they see a dime of my money.

    • roncv1 says:

      Right dynadude…we give up SOOOO much for SOOO little when we shop at Wall-mart. The problem is very few understand this and most people who shop there will not even listen….

  14. FredAppell says:

    I’m actually on the fence here. While I am happy that millions of people will finally have coverage I have a hard time supporting a bill that still leaves insurance companies making huge profits. First off, i’m 43, single with no dependents. Second, I do have some lingering minor health issues but I am not under the care of any doctor. Third, I simply can’t afford a high premium with a low deductible or a low premium with a high deductible which leaves people like me under insured. I apparently make too much annual income to qualify for any state sponsored health care but that doesn’t mean I make a lot of money. If I get fined for being uninsured than i’m screwed. Many Americans are in this very situation and so I ask, what about us? I wanted true Universal Health Care and instead we got this rubbish. So forgive me if I don’t share the enthusiasm with the rest of the Democrats. Oh by the way, my elderly mother informed me yesterday that her Social Security benefits gave her a whopping $17 a month raise but her medicare just went up $100 a month. Where is the justice?

    • Sand_Cat says:

      As I said, single-payer: everybody pays, everybody benefits.

      • FredAppell says:

        Thank you! I’m glad someone understands where i’m coming from. I completely supported the liberal policies for a very long time but this Health Care Bill is still built on the market principles for which I do not support.

        • Sam Harrington says:

          FredA I too understand where you are coming from. I believe that the affordable health care act was just to get a “foot” in the door. Remember, 49% of the people did not want it. Did your Mom switch to an advantage plan? Regular medicare with the prescription plan did not go up that high? $100.00???

          • FredAppell says:

            I feel like an idiot Sam because I realized my mistake hours after I posted that. she was previously paying $96 per month and starting in 2013 she will be paying $105 a month. Still though, she lives with me because she is on a fixed income and she is handicapped and every dollar is precious in her situation. I apologize for the misleading information. I don’t know what plan she is on but she is happy with the care she receives. By the way, I hope your right about the Affordable Health Care Act. Hopefully it is a stepping stone to something greater. I appreciate your reply because it gave me a chance to correct myself.

  15. clarenceswinney says:

    What happened? 2001-2009
    Repeal of Glass-Steagall and Modernization of Commodities Markets
    and Neo-Con Imperialists=disasters
    Took a 240B surplus at 9-30-01 to a 1450 Deficit at 9-30-09.
    Took an 1830 Budget on 9-30-01to 3520B on 9-30-09
    Borrowed 6100B in 8 years— debt —5800B on 9-30-01to 11,900 on 9-30-09
    Initiated two wars that cost 2000B
    Passed a rich mans tax cut that lost 1900B revenue in 8 years
    Now we owe 16,000B thanks to those guys.

  16. howa4x says:

    It could be summed up simply as greed. We have a nation where the accumulation of wealth is the new religion, forget about the old ones. It dosen’t matter how you get it, being the mafia, or a drug lord, or a corporate criminal like Enron. Just be wealthy here and you can get blessed by a bishop, or Pastor, or Rabbi or Iman, no moral questions asked about how you got that wealth, or how many people did you hurt, just give us a peice of it and we will make it ok. It used to be a sin in the major religions to be greedy, actually one of the seven deadly ones, but no more. Some of the religions actually got into the greed game. Think of the mega churchs and the salaries of the preachers. Think of Tammie and Jim Baker, and their lavish lifestyle, all in the name of Christ. People say we are in moral decay and they are right but it starts with our religions. Abortion is a sin but grand theivry isn’t. Ken Delay who commited a fraud was invited to the White House.
    No local priest ever challanged the mafia members of thier congregation, you know the ones that sold drugs or ran prostitudes, or killed people. One big monetay gift was all that it took for dispensation. Today the evangelicals want to give to give the largess to the rich and take from the neediest. Let’s keep tax breaks for people worth 25 billion but lets raise the retirement age for seniors waiting for medicare. Really!!
    All the religions in a moral country would scream about this as an injustice, but not here where our new religion has many branches, but the same ethos. Just Gimmie the money!!

  17. RudyBlue says:

    Corporate greed at its finest. Why do we allow this madness to continue? Where is the collective outrage of the American people? Will this continue to the point that only revolution will bring the massive numbers of poor out of poverty? Is that what it’s going to take to bring back the original American dream, an equal society for all? How sad for us as a nation. We are the hypocrites of the world and the world knows it. Too bad most of us can’t see it.

  18. commserver says:

    My daughter goes to Williams College which is near Walmart in N. Adams Massachusetts. From what I have seen many of the employees are retirees and students.

    These employees tend to be transient. They are also happy to have a job in area that doesn’t have too many well paying jobs.

    Of course much is made that they have a job.

  19. Sand_Cat says:

    So the rejection of single-payer comes back to haunt us. The freeloaders in this case are millionaires and billionaires – or “job creators,” as they are known by those playing with less than a full deck.

    Single-payer with extra taxation for corporations that don’t pay workers a living wage sounds like a plan.

  20. Lisztman says:

    Just what Wal-Mart needs. A new generation of workers — who care as much about their company as their company cares about them. Who are working at Wal-Mart as a last-ditch try to stay off Welfare. Who will jump to “anywhere else” at the first hint of opportunity.

    You think the checkout lines at Wal-Mart are interminable NOW? Just wait…

    • Lynda says:

      What you refer too is just another reason why when I need a big box store I use Costco. They treat their staff far better and the folks working there give respect to the customers. Simple business practice.

  21. Katherine Patrick says:

    All your points are excellent and we must hold these corporations accountable for their shameful behavior.
    Now–as a writing teacher, I want to make a request of you, Robyn. Your first sentence says “For millions of Americans, all they really want for Christmas is decent health care coverage.” This is a grammatical mess.
    This sentence can be effectively re-written as “All millions of Americans really want for Christmas is decent health care coverage.” There is no need for the prepositional phrase beginning the sentence, and it’s actually an error. So, please endeavor to never use this structure again.
    Teachers are charged with teaching our students how to write, but we try to do so in a world of print that abounds with mistakes. It’s very hard to correct everything in the classroom when kids see this stuff out in “the real world.”

  22. lambypie says:

    WalMart almost always have kept their employees under 30 hours for this same reason. This is not new. The same with restaurants, has anyone ever inquired about what a waiter/waitress makes an hour. It is shameful and should not be allowed. Supposedly their tips make up the difference. Tips should be for quality of service not as part of a wage. Which is definitely not a living wage. The whole system just sucks.

  23. Hopefully those miserly employers will experience the unintended consequence of increased unionization of their workforce.

    For every action there is an equal but opposite reaction.

  24. Question?
    Do the companies small or large in general go to give Health Insurance to all Americans workers part time or full time?
    It is or will be for the Americans that do or do not have Health insurance ?
    if you already read the guide-line of the OBAMA-CARE program please answer the questions.

    Thank you.

  25. Ed says:

    Why do you think they bought all those congressmen?

  26. Lynda says:

    There have always been well run companies and the not so well run. The companies that embrace the ever changing market place, innovate, mature and learn to work within the system will thrive. Those who in desperation hang on to the old way will wither and die. I spent over 40 years working in corporate America and I watched the firms that valued their employees and considered them assets thrive and those who believed their employees as costs lose market share. Those dropping never seemed to figure out what was happening. The same thing is taking place today in far too many companies. Worrying about the next quarters numbers and not taking the long view will bite them in the bottom line. Look to what happened to those chain store firms whose leadership blovated about Obamacare and raising the prices of pizza by a quarter. They took it on their well deserved chin.

  27. ObozoMustGo says:

    WOW!!! Who would have thought that a business would be looking to control costs? SHOCKER!!!!!!!!! How greedy can they get? I mean really… don’t they know their first responsibility is caring for the employees? All this pursuit of profit is just greed. Yeah, right. Sure, sure.

    What you leftist freaks fail to understand is that a business isn’t just going to bend over and take it from you morons. They will react to keep their cost structure in line with their requirements so that they can be competitive with their products in the market place. For example, Olive Garden will need to take that already expensive plate of spaghetti and meatballs from $11 to $15 or higher. Not worth it when a customer can go down the street to the little pizza place that doesn’t and can’t comply with Obozocare and pay $8 to $10 for the same thing. The net result is that the business is less competitive, they lose customers and revenue, and they lay off people, or avoid hiring any more. It’s just simple survival. It isn’t any more complicated than that. Most of you leftist morons and useful idiots on here have no idea what you are talking about.

    Merry Christmas!

    “It is indeed difficult to imagine how men who have entirely renounced the habit of managing their own affairs could be successful in choosing those who ought to lead them. It is impossible to believe that a liberal, energetic, and wise government can ever emerge from the ballots of a nation of servants.” ― Alexis de Tocqueville

  28. batavier says:

    “Darden told the Orlando Sentinel in October that keeping employees at 28 hours a week was one possible way to “address the cost implications health care reform will have on our business.”

    Ah, those “cost implications”…..If the chief Beancounter(s) at Darden really want to see a mushroom-cloud of “costimplications”, they should completely remove, deny, scrap ANY EMPLOYEE BENEFITS, including bans on child-labor, the 40-hour workweek, overtime, and especially healthcare….

    It must be peculiarly American, especially among those having absorbed the wisdom of our “renowned” Business Schools, to think “Democracy” MEANS that now, any real and aspiring millionaire/billionaire can apply the same policies that caused, oh a few years ago, the Russian Czarist Family to be exterminated…..

  29. Rick says:

    I already Boycott Walmart for their Anti Diversity policies, Now is the time to get my whole Family and friends to also Boycott Walmart. I am also going to boycott the others though I don’t ususlly go to those places anyway, except Darden Restaurants, and they backed down.

    I agree with Bonnie below!

  30. ind2021 says:

    let us all boycot walmart red lobster and olive garden, then you will see a change.

  31. gargray says:

    These corporations and all the big money people, they really don’t care about this country, all they think about is how much money they can make. They want to keep their workers salerys as low as they can, they hate the unions and despise us. mabye it is time to reload like Pailin said.but not against the children.

  32. dsand1445 says:

    And they corporations are people too. I say lets hit them in the pockets since they have no morals and care more about profit then people.

  33. onedonewong says:

    Only some one who is totally naive wouldn’t realize that this would happen. Obamacare cost’s small businesses $2 and hour per employee. While that doesn’t seem a lot for many its the difference between profitable or going broke.
    Just another example of the messiah not knowing anything he’s talking about

  34. Since i don’t eat out anymore , i will boycott Wal-marts and shop at targets even though its a little more expensive. Like Bonnie says please keep publishing these companies so we can boucott them all.

  35. Does Obamacare include visual and dental?

  36. ronJayr says:

    I am just hopeful that companies will see that they are actually hurting themselves. Firstly, maybe forcing corporate taxes to go up to cover the shortfall on healthcare costs (and so paying eventually) and secondly the advantages to providing healthcare benefits. Such as tax deductions for expenses around providing the benefits, a healthy workforce that doesn’t miss work as much so they don’t have to have excess employees to cover shifts and basically HAPPIER employees ( happy employees mean better customer service – which is a always high on the priority list of the best companies). My opinion is that they should have had the idea themselves just to retain the better employees. Good Benefits are ALWAYS listed in the top tier of of importance on any employer surveys. So this will promote a better business model than trying to forgo the benefits. The costs associated with high turnover (training costs, hiring, advertising positions, additional HR personnel, etc.). I do think it will all level out eventually and as the economy does better the good employees will move to better employers and the recession business model of profits over people will move back to the model of the 1990’s.

  37. oldnick2 says:

    It is long past due the time for us to clean up our act on healthcare for our people. We have “politicked” and studied this thing to death–to the point where it is nothing more than an exercise in masturbation. All we do is fight, argue, waste money, and detract ourselves from solving other very pressing problems while so many of our people are hurting. If we will take health care off the back of the employers, out from under the insurance companies, and put it where it should be, (i.e. single-payer universal healthcare), we can reduce as well as better control cost, significantly reduce the deficit, quit arguing and bickering, and go on with the business of managing the many other problems in our country. Our employers can better manage their businesses because they will be able to plan better and control their costs more effectively, it would help to stimulate hiring, and be a “win-win” all the way around. Insurance company controlled healthcare has been a losing proposition for everybody.

    The new program should be built around the model of our current Medicare; and, I believe, managed by doctors as opposed to bureaucrats. Any arguments or faults to be found in creating such a program can be resolved by legislation when it is written into law. We have the experiences of countries all over the world to guide us; and there is no reason we have to incorporate the problems with their laws into ours. Also, by no means should our government be prohibited from negotiating prices with drug companies or providers.

    In implementing such a program, we should do so using (as in Social Security) a stand alone fund. This is a must in order to control costs. Under no circumstance should the fund or the monies to finance it be included in our national budget (again, just as is the case with Social Security). The fund and its financing must be wholly transparent for all to see. It must not be allowed to run a deficit, and financing should be accomplished using an income surtax and/or national sales tax “earmarked” for such. If a national sales tax is used, we should use the state systems to collect it in order to minimize collection costs.

    To those who cry “Socialism”, I say rubbish. This is nowhere near Socialism. Deng Xiaoping said, “It doesn’t matter whether a cat is white or black, as long as it catches mice.” This will catch mice–many mice. Let’s get it done.

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