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Thread: Business Rejects Obamacare

                  
   
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  1. #1
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    Default Business Rejects Obamacare

    Business Rejects Obamacare

    Business Rejects Obamacare
    By Arnold Ahlert

    Elections, as it is often said, have consequences. As a result of the president's reelection, the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, will be fully implemented. Unsurprisingly, several businesses are looking for ways to avoid the costs associated with the law. Just as unsurprisingly, American leftists consider such efforts to keep one's business profitable–or solvent–unseemly.

    Zane Tankel, chairman and CEO of Apple-Metro, an Applebee's New York-area franchise, explains the obvious. "We've calculated it will [cost] some millions of dollars across our system," Tankel told Fox Business Network last Thursday. "So what does that say–that says we won't build more restaurants. We won't hire more people." Apple-Metro runs 40 Applebee's restaurants and employs from 80 to 300 people at each of its locations.

    Jimmy John Liautaud, founder of Jimmy John's sub franchise, echoed that sentiment. Like a number of smaller businesses, he is considering cutting employee hours to 28, to get under the Obamacare cap of 30 hours that defines full-time employment. Under the law, a full-time employee must be given healthcare insurance, or the company must pay a $2000 fine, if it fails to do so. Part-time employees don't have to be covered. "We have to do that, said Liautaud. "There's no other way we can survive it, because we think it will cost us 50 cents a sandwich. That's just the actual cost. If you have 40 or 50 employees at a restaurant, and the penalty is $2,000, and you're going to pay an $80,000 or $100,000 penalty, there goes the profit in your restaurant," he added.

    John Arensmeyer, CEO and founder of Small Business Majority, a national small business advocacy organization, served on a panel at the White House summit on healthcare reform in 2009. He contended that it is "counterproductive to criticize" the law at this point. "Now that the election is over, if there's any political motivation behind it, I'm not sure what the objective is," he said. "It's the law of the land, and there's no chance it's going to be repealed after the reelection of the president and the Supreme Court decision earlier this year, and we think it's time for all businesses to come together and figure out how to make this work."

    Apparently it hasn't dawned on Mr. Arensmeyer that the CEOs of Apple-Metro and Jimmy Johns are doing precisely that.

    They are not alone. John Schnatter, CEO of the Papa John's pizza franchises, also revealed he would most likely begin reducing employees' hours. Back in August, he told Politico why. "Our best estimate is that the Obamacare will cost 11 to 14 cents per pizza, or 15 to 20 cents per order from a corporate basis," Schnatter said, even as he noted that "our business model and unit economics are about as ideal as you can get for a food company to absorb Obamacare." Despite that reality, Schnatter remained defiant. "If Obamacare is in fact not repealed, we will find tactics to shallow out any Obamacare costs and core strategies to pass that cost onto consumers in order to protect our shareholders' best interests," Schnatter vowed.

    He reinforced that argument at Edison State College's Collier County campus the day after the election. After conceding that all Americans having health insurance is a good idea, he calculated that the implementation of the law would cost his company $5 million to $8 million in additional costs–year in, year out. Thus, he expects individual franchise owners will reduce employee hours in order to avoid covering them. "That's probably what's going to happen," he said. "It's common sense. That's what I call lose-lose."

    The Darden chain of restaurants, owners of owns Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, The Capital Grille, Eddie V's and the Yard House, is also looking for a way to avoid the costs associated with ObamaCare. In October, the restaurant group began conducting a test at a select number of its restaurants in four markets, emulating a common theme: limiting employee shifts to get under the 30 hours that mandates converge. Ironically, the company, one of the nation's 30 largest employers, already offers health insurance to all its approximately 185,000 employees. Yet the limited-benefit plan they offer is a type of coverage being phased out under Obamacare, which will ban annual limits for most plans. Three other restaurant chains, White Castle, McDonald's and Denny's, are also looking for ways to avoid the employer mandate scheduled to go into effect in 2014.

    The leftist backlash is predictable. Prior to the election, Washington, D.C., employment law attorney Robert B. Fitzpatrick claimed that if the president won, "I would think aggressive enforcement people within the administration would pursue cases like that. And say listen, you're just playing with the numbers, playing with the hours to try to avoid compliance with providing health care to employees," he told Fox News. "And there are going to be consequences."

    The Huffington Post was upset that employers notified employees that their votes might have consequences, noting that employers who "sent notices to workers urging them to vote for Romney, or warning of potential problems if Obama won," might face charges of "intimidation" - even as they were forced to concede that the Supreme Court's Citizen United decision protected employers' rights to do so. Prior to that decision unions could promote candidates. Corporations could not.

    The Huffington Post was also trolling for people who think they were fired because Obama got re-elected. In bold print, in two different articles at their website, the following message appeared: "Has your boss fired workers as a result of President Obama's reelection? Email Jillian.Berman@huffingtonpost.com and tell us about it."

    And then there was Twitter. The prevailing sentiment was that decisions to limit hours or lay off workers are "selfish," "ridiculous," "unpatriotic," and worthy of a "boycott."

    Such fascist characterizations may be emotionally satisfying, but they miss the point. A Las Vegas business owner who fired 22 of his 144 employees after the election, counters such perceptions with a dose of reality in an anonymous phone call to a local radio station. "I have always put my employees first," said the employer. "I always made sure that when I went without a paycheck that I made sure they were paid. And I explained that I always put them first and unfortunately I'm at a point where I'm being forced to have to worry about me and my family now and a business that I built from just me to 114 employees…Elections do have consequences, but so do choices. A choice you make every day has consequences and you know what, I've always put my employees first, but unfortunately today I have to put me and my family first, and you watch what's gonna happen."

    No doubt for many on the left, the idea that an employer might put his family's interests ahead of his employee's is little more than selfishness run amok. And in a burst of even more unrealism, these same, self-professed champions of the middle class apparently can't comprehend (or don't care) that a boycott of "offending" businesses will result in even more employees getting laid off.

    Yet perhaps the most remarkable disconnect demonstrated by the left has to do with the election campaign itself. Barack Obama couldn't run on an economic record that included 43 months of joblessness above 8 percent, the weakest recovery on record, or record numbers of Americans who became attached to government programs such as Food Stamps, welfare or Social Security disability. Thus, he chose to run against the "fat-cat bankers on Wall Street," private sector businesses who "didn't build that" and the rich who aren't paying their "fair share" and are "holding the economy hostage" as a result. He demonized wealth-producers in general, and Mitt Romney in particular.

    Now, he and his followers not only expect the entire business community to fall in line behind them, but absorb the extra, and perhaps ultimately debilitating, costs of Obamacare–without so much as a whisper of protest, no less.

    It is bad enough the left can demonstrate such a profound ignorance regarding human nature and economics. Yet what is far more unsettling is the premise on which such ignorance rests: in short, the American left apparently believes that the essence of free-market capitalism, namely "incentive," is interchangeable with the essence of socialist-driven, redistributionist impulses, namely "coercion." Nothing could be further from the truth, elusive as that truth may be to those who never seem to tire of finding ways to spend other people's money. One suspects it will become glaringly and grimly apparent over the next four years.

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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Group turns to social media to rally support for Papa John's amid liberal backlash

    Daniel Wetter is just 16 years old, but his plan to support pizza chain Papa John’s amid a backlash of liberal criticism is no pie-in-the-sky idea.

    Wetter is part of an upstart group called Rebooting America that is proposing that Friday be a national day of appreciation for the pizza chain, whose chief executive officer is being attacked for saying employees’ hours might be cut to cover the cost of implementing their health insurance under ObamaCare.

    The conservative group has hatched a social media-based campaign that centers on encouraging people to buy a pizza pie at a Papa John’s store, taking a photo of the outing and then posting it on a Facebook page or tweeting it.

    “We just wanted to stand with Papa John’s because it is under attack,” said Wetter, who volunteered with Mitt Romney's campaign and credits fellow conservative activist Justen Charters with coming up with the idea.

    Wetter said Monday the Facebook appreciation page went up Sunday night and almost immediately got 1,000 supporters.

    Papa John's founder and CEO John H. Schnatter said after Election Day that franchise owners might have to cut hours because the health care law requires companies with more than 50 employees to provide insurance for those working at least 30 hours. He also estimated the law will cost the company $5 million to $8 million more annually.

    Other companies, such as Olive Garden and Applebee’s, also have faced criticism and threats of boycotts for voicing similar concerns.

    Supporters of the Affordable Care Act more recently pounced on comments by New York-area Applebee's franchisee Zane Tankel, who told Fox Business that cost increases related to implementing ObamaCare might force a halt to expansion and additional hiring. Critics appear to have interpreted Tankel’s comments to mean he will lay off employees as a result of the changes.

    Wetter said he hopes the activism will move beyond the appreciation day for Papa John's.

    “This is not just about Friday or one group,” said Wetter, adding he already was a fan of Papa John’s. “I just had some pizza yesterday, and I’m going to have some more Friday.”

    The other elements of his plan call for supporters to “like" Papa John's Facebook page and buy an extra pizza Friday “to share with someone that is struggling right now,” such as a neighbor who lost a job.

    Group turns to social media to rally support for Papa John's amid liberal backlash | Fox News
    Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips. Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil, to take part in wicked deeds with men who are evildoers; let me not eat of their delicacies.
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Am I totally alone in thinking that all businesses should have been giving their employees health benefits anyway??!! Goodness, it's the first thing people think about when they get hired on full time. It's the number one need in our lives...whether or not we have health insurance and making sure our children are covered when we go to the doctors. It's also the number one complaint I hear from folks saying that they can't afford their medical bills because they either had no insurance or the copay was just ridiculous.

    Yes, there was gonna be some aftershocks from some companies, especially in the blue collar sector where they try to get away with working folks like a dog with little pay. I'm highly suspicious of Papa John's anyway....they get me on every little fee when I order from them, so I would like to know their profit margin and exactly how much it's really hurting them to provide health coverage for their employees. I suspect we'll find a lot of it is greed.....

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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Quote Originally Posted by WhisperWisdom View Post
    Am I totally alone in thinking that all businesses should have been giving their employees health benefits anyway??!! Goodness, it's the first thing people think about when they get hired on full time. It's the number one need in our lives...whether or not we have health insurance and making sure our children are covered when we go to the doctors. It's also the number one complaint I hear from folks saying that they can't afford their medical bills because they either had no insurance or the copay was just ridiculous.
    For larger companies and corporations, you are right, they should. But, the problem is the small business owner who can't afford to provide insurance for his employees...he (she) is the one who is going to be hurt the most by this, and many could lose their businesses because of it. It's already hard enough for them to compete with the WalMart's, Lowes', and Home Depot's of the world; Obamacare is only going to make things harder for them.
    Obie, caligal, mikhen7 and 2 others like this.
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Quote Originally Posted by WhisperWisdom View Post
    Am I totally alone in thinking that all businesses should have been giving their employees health benefits anyway??!! Goodness, it's the first thing people think about when they get hired on full time. It's the number one need in our lives...whether or not we have health insurance and making sure our children are covered when we go to the doctors. It's also the number one complaint I hear from folks saying that they can't afford their medical bills because they either had no insurance or the copay was just ridiculous.

    Yes, there was gonna be some aftershocks from some companies, especially in the blue collar sector where they try to get away with working folks like a dog with little pay. I'm highly suspicious of Papa John's anyway....they get me on every little fee when I order from them, so I would like to know their profit margin and exactly how much it's really hurting them to provide health coverage for their employees. I suspect we'll find a lot of it is greed.....
    Until a person owns and runs a business it's not fair to assume all business owners are greedy. I have owned and ran 2 businesses. I sold my first one prior to the Clinton presidency because of looming regulation and the specter of helthcare mandates. Businesses all over the US are put upon by ever increasing regulations, fees, taxes and now mandates to pay for healthcare.

    Seriously? A potential $2,000.00 fine, if you don't cover all full time employees, is supposed to be absorbed by a business? Unless you are a drug dealer or a union boss, nobody makes enough profit to absorb that level of cost. If you price it into the cost of your product then people using your line of argument are going to complain about the added cost of the pizza.

    Bottom line, if you keep making it expensive to do business people who own those businesses will need to find ways to stay viable. Here is a scenario from my state when I last owned a business. I opened another business if 2001 and closed it in 2009. My last year in business I paid 28% Federal, and 14% self employment (SS, Medicare, etc. oddly enough these are programs that are already insolvent, but I digress). Since I live in the peoples republic of California I also paid 10% state tax and 7.75% (now 8%) in sales tax. On just my income alone I was paying 52% and it would be higher in the current regime.

    So, more money taken from businesses, when they already shoulder the burden of keeping people employed, is a bad way to run an economy. Anyone take a look at Europe lately? We are following that model, how's it working for them? Success and planning for a terrible business climate does not equaly greed, it is called self preservation.

    I wonder how many people who were laid off, or are being put to part time voted for the POTUS because of his hate the rich rhetoric? Elections do indeed have consequences!
    Last edited by OnceWasLost; November-13th-2012 at 05:44 PM.

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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    We are seeing the change coming forth and just wait until 2013. This leader if one can call it that will bring this nation down unless the Lord has other plans. I leave it in His hands. Lord Jesus come quickly.
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    My father was a small business owner while I was growing up and he was the furthest thing from greedy.

    Back in the 90s, he tried his hardest to provide health insurance for his employees. I remember many conversations at the dinner table about his frustration with the healthcare system. Large corporations were charged less because they brought more people to the table, so he had to pay much, much more to offer the same exact coverage for his employees than large companies.

    He made sure his employees were paid first and foremost. There were several months when he brought home absolutely nothing (thankfully my mom was gainfully employed, so this didn't hurt too badly), and he actually had to forgo tax payments for a time to make sure his employees had money in their pockets. He is still dealing with the consequences of not paying those taxes a decade later. When he finally decided to close up shop, he let his employees know ahead of time and helped them all find new positions elsewhere. There were many nights where he and my older brothers were up into the wee hours of the morning running the presses and packaging orders once all the pressmen had moved on (he owned a print shop).

    I can't fault any of these companies for doing what they need to in order to stay afloat. Its a common assumption that all business owners are bringing in scores of money all the time. It is just not true. They often have to operate at barely any profit in order to compete with the large corporations who can get larger discounts because they can afford to buy in large quantity.

    My brother is also a small business owner. I haven't asked him what he plans to do yet. He only has one employee, so he may just decide to pay the fine.
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    I know there are a lot of other issues that come into play being a small business owner, especially once you start dealing with the taxes and federal fees out there. A lot of that also needs a serious overhaul. But my point here is, at least Obama tried to do something with the healthcare reform. It's not perfect, and some of it I don't agree with myself, but on this point he was able to get Congress working together long enough to pass something that we've all said needed to be done for years.

    Unfortunately, when you also consider the myriad of other fees and regulations out there that can literally choke a small business owner, it really does just add another huge stone on the ship going down. I'm remaining cautiously hopeful that Obama can effect some change in that quarter.

    I wasn't trying to disparage anyone on here for being greedy. My point was this was something that should have been in place decades ago, and all of this mess should have been figured out too so that the small business sector could continue to grow and thrive. Unfortunately, it's when I hear about the bigger companies and corporations complaining that I have my doubts on just how sincere they are in this situation.

    Hopefully, it's not a case of too little, too late.

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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Government mandated healthcare is unconstitutional regardless of the liberal Supreme Courts decision. This is an option and if the government decided they needed to take control of it then they should have taken into account the amount of jobs that would be lost because of it. All it is going to do is create more poverty, period. More out of the Biblically Based working person's paycheck to pay for a majority of others who are already looking for handouts. I did not say everyone fit that category. Regardless the 47% that are on handouts will now increase to over 50 % if not much more. These people have a right to cut hours or to lay-off workers for not only the good of their own families but those that continue to work. It is better to make some slashes here and there to keep the majority working than to close down the whole business. The $200k to 250K bottom line is way to low of a limit to impose this kind of tax hike on a business. Scripturally speaking even Jesus was crucified in order that many may be saved.

    I feel sorry for the business owners who are striving to make ends meet and the families who must bear the lay-offs.
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Quote Originally Posted by WhisperWisdom View Post
    I know there are a lot of other issues that come into play being a small business owner, especially once you start dealing with the taxes and federal fees out there. A lot of that also needs a serious overhaul. But my point here is, at least Obama tried to do something with the healthcare reform. It's not perfect, and some of it I don't agree with myself, but on this point he was able to get Congress working together long enough to pass something that we've all said needed to be done for years.
    His "solution" is a Trojan horse and if anyone looks at the detail it's obvious. Businesses (Private Insurance) cannot run in the red like the government system. They are also made to comply with regulations that do not apply to a government system, so someone has their finger on the scale. Some people think it was a noble thing he and his party did with healthcare, but I am convinced it was a callous attempt to change our way of life.

    Still don't believe me.......... have a look here.



    Furthermore I see it as a naked power grab meant to lock in a constituency for life, again, I point to Europe as our destination. Promise the moon as long as you can, but the time eventually comes when you can't afford it and people will riot when they don't get their "free" stuff. Sheer numbers show more people are needing the "benefits" as Baby Boomers are coming into the system. Their numbers are greater than the generation that followed them, so fewer people are around to pay for the services of those receiving those same services. Numbers don't lie.


    Quote Originally Posted by WhisperWisdom View Post
    Unfortunately, when you also consider the myriad of other fees and regulations out there that can literally choke a small business owner, it really does just add another huge stone on the ship going down. I'm remaining cautiously hopeful that Obama can effect some change in that quarter.
    Yet he always adds to the problem, rather than reverse course. After his first 4 years, it baffles me anyone thinks he would do differently than he has thus far. He has not been man enough to own up to his failure. Summer 2010 was the "summer of recovery" remember that? Yet, after 1 trillion in new debt every year and 800+ billion is stimulus there is no recovery and he is not man enough to own up to that failure. He instead blames Bush and people still buy that lie?

    Quote Originally Posted by WhisperWisdom View Post
    I wasn't trying to disparage anyone on here for being greedy. My point was this was something that should have been in place decades ago, and all of this mess should have been figured out too so that the small business sector could continue to grow and thrive. Unfortunately, it's when I hear about the bigger companies and corporations complaining that I have my doubts on just how sincere they are in this situation.
    Businesses have had to contend with trying to provide healthcare for employees, while the cost are increasing exponentially. The very nanny state government that is supposed to ensure we all get stuff is the same beast that causes the costs to skyrocket. Too bad we have bought the notion that the government was intended to provide anything, they were not. The only thing they were to "provide" for was our "common defense" they were to "promote" the "general welfare" and "ensure domestic tranquility to ourselves and our posterity"

    Progressives have turned that who "We The People" principle into a "We The Collective" and You (government) our benefactor. The Patriots who fought and died for liberty have been done a grave injustice in our current atmosphere of entitlement.

    The idea that the government will provide a cost saving solution is to deny the clear teaching of history. Numbers don't lie, this healthcare system will be medicare on steroids and Prozac all at the same time. Welcome to the brave new world of further social welfare and now healthcare. The left is downright giddy to be drinking this koolaid, too bad when they see what a nightmare it is it will be too late.

    The road to destruction is paved with good intentions. (assuming they are good intentions, I rather think they have ulterior motives)
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    Default Re: Business Rejects Obamacare

    Quote Originally Posted by followerofjesus View Post
    For larger companies and corporations, you are right, they should. But, the problem is the small business owner who can't afford to provide insurance for his employees...he (she) is the one who is going to be hurt the most by this, and many could lose their businesses because of it. It's already hard enough for them to compete with the WalMart's, Lowes', and Home Depot's of the world; Obamacare is only going to make things harder for them.

    Unfortunately economically this is a correct statement.

    I would love to say that many small businesses should be paying their staff well and cover all their insurances and other costs like that but for some business owners it would mean closing their doors.

    We lose out in two ways. The local community where the small business has been operating lose the services provided and they lose a local employer. This leads to less money in the local community. Less buying power in your local community acutally affects everybody who lives there. Lose enough small businesses and it can become very bad.

    Some small businesses do much for our local communities. It's only when they are not there we understand how much we needed them.

    We had due to some road work (botched up by our local council) 15 small businesses have to close their doors. Their profit margins could not cope with 15 - 18 months of road works that decreased their trade. None of these long time established small shops have reappeared and we have to travel a few suburbs away now for any of these missing services. These businesses had declining profitability due to things going up in general, taxes, goods and services. Most of them were Mom & Pop stores anyway and these people were seeing their shops through to retirement with a few who had a child who was going to take over because they had no other employment opportunities.

    We had a bakery & cake shop that did a variety of old fashioned cakes and all with fresh ingredients. They had faithful customers but to remain open they needed the street trade.

    There was a pet shop and they had far more than the Supermarkets for pets and stuff made by locals and sold in their stores. We got our cat scratching posts from them, we ordered them through a catalogue and a lady nearby made them. They were also the place to go if you wanted to know about dog training or any kind of pet competitions or pet clubs. It was the place for pet lovers to go in and not just get pet supplies but so much more. GONE! The street trade helped them keep a float financially.

    Anyway I didn't use all the stores that were affected but I know other people around here who are devastated by the closures.

    Cost of employees is a big factor in some of these small stores and businesses keeping their doors open.

    In a perfect world all employees should be looked after by their companies or business owners. However when jobs are scarce getting some kind of income without any health benefit is better than no income at all.

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