The Perverse Incentives Of ObamaCare

Yes, by all means, you should earn less money:

This, right here, is the toxic essence of the welfare state. It’s already been proven over and over that for the lower classes, welfare incentivizes permanent dependence: Since one gets more money receiving a raft of federal entitlements than one would get earning a salary at a low-level job, it’s a rational economic decision to remain unemployed, on purpose. Which millions of Americans do, generation after generation, creating a permanent underclass that only consumes the common treasury without ever contributing anything to it.

What Obamacare does, as demonstrated by this eye-opening article, is bring the same economic disincentive to the middle class: It is now a rational economic decision for the average American to earn less money. And to earn less you must work less, and when you work less, you contribute less to the common good.

With people intentionally contributing less to the common good, there will be less federal money available to finance the subsidies (which are fiscally unaffordable even without this problem), leading to an unavoidable downward economic spiral for the entire nation.

That’s OK. Remember, the president told us that, at some point, you’ve earned enough money. He’s just lowering that point.

14 thoughts on “The Perverse Incentives Of ObamaCare”

  1. From what I recall reading last month, there’s a pretty steep marriage penalty for two income families built into the law as well. This gives couples the incentive to divorce and shack up or never marry in the first place. From memory, the subsidize cutoff for a married couple is far less than for two single people.

    1. It’s rare. but “The Common Good” does exist, for example, vaccines. Everyone benefits from the end of Smallpox, but that’s only possible if the vast majority of people get the vaccine. The huge explosion of Social diseases would be a counter-example, caused, oddly, by the same people who push “The Common Good”. Surreal that they act against their own best interests and their beliefs like that…..

      1. Your example of vaccines as a common good is a good one, but it’s also an example where something may be good for the population as a whole but bad for some individuals. Take the example of the polio vaccine. There are actually two different versions of the vaccine. The Salk vaccine uses dead polio virus and has to administered by a shot. The Sabin vaccine uses live but weakened polio virus and can be administered orally such as by a sugar cube. The Sabin vaccine is easier to administer and because it uses a live virus, it can immunize others via contact. However, a small percentage of people who receive the Sabin vaccine will develop polio, while that doesn’t happen with a properly prepared Salk vaccine. As a community, eradicating polio was a greater good. However, for those individuals who develop polio as a result, it isn’t such a good thing.

  2. This and other things are so obvious that backing down in the fight against it is not an option. Those that do not understand this should not be reelected. Now if we could only get the stupid party to realize that if they didn’t funnel tax payer money to the evil party they would not have a chance to cause such damage.

    No I’m not back. Just passing through.

  3. “This and other things are so obvious that backing down in the fight against it is not an option. ”

    The problem, Ken, is that Boehner lost his nerve and backed down and offered everything to Obama.

    Luckily for us, Obama rejected the offer. The Stupid Party was saved by Obama’s stupidity.

    There’s a large fraction of the GOP who are not Conservatives but merely talk the talk at election time. This fraction doesn’t want to change the size of government. They simply want THEMSELVES to be in charge of Leviathan.

  4. The other option to working less is to work at non-taxable, non-reportable things. Obviously there are plenty of unemployed people who make a ‘good’ living in the sex and drug trades, all tax free and unreported. I find it interesting that the feds recently have been cracking down on formerly mundane money making activities like garage sales and farmer’s markets. Trying to nip a potential problem in the bud. With all the domestic spying we are learning about, more and more grey market activity will have to go even deeper underground. Will we have to speak in code when the neighbor calls to ask if my kid will mow his lawn, so as not to trip any keyword searches?

    1. The vast majority of unreported income is a lot less “sexy” than that.

      Most contractors accept cash and most building maintenance is done that way. No-one likes paperwork.

  5. What matters is how much you get left after you pay for essentials regardless if they are mandatory or not. I would much rather continue living in a country with Social Security and Universal Coverage but I guess you Americans are free to choose what you want. Which you did by giving Obama a majority.

    Keeping that in mind they are reversing those two things here in Europe so we seem to be heading towards opposite directions.

    First they open the markets to countries like China with State bank, telecoms, water, energy sector control, then they get surprised when they get toasted in the open market. I would be laughing at the bind the Germans are now. They thought the Chinese would keep buying their expensive machine tools forever regardless if the rest of Europe focused on light industry and financial services got screwed or not. But the fact is the Chinese are not interested in doing expensive imports forever. They also know that isolationism can come back at any time. The Sino-Soviet split and the Tiananmen Square bans surely kept that as a reminder. They will buy the machine tools alright. Once. Then they will start copying them and doing everything in house. In the semiconductor business I have been rather surprised they haven’t attempted going for their own lithography tools and layout software since as of now they can do basically everything else from chip design to manufacturing. It is only a matter of time. Heck if the Japanese were able to do their own lithography tools it would be retarded to think the Chinese can’t do it with a larger economy. Especially now that lithography technology seems to have hit a morass.

  6. “I would much rather continue living in a country with Social Security and Universal Coverage . . . ” Yes, G., King of the Statists, it’s already been well-established that individual liberty is low down on your scale of values while a comfortable serfdom is high. (Just remember sooner or later, at master’s whim, serfdom gets pretty uncomfortable pretty fast.

    Re the main post, I keep thinking of the quote (I guess it’s from that rock music you kids seem to enjoy) that Glenn Reynolds keeps referencing–more and more frequently in the Age of Obama–“They want to make us all into beggards, ’cause beggars are easy to please.”

    1. I guess you are one of those persons who thinks global immunization campaigns are a bad idea as well. Or that eradicating smallpox from the face of the planet was irrelevant.

    2. Quite. Please remind me who created the TSA. What you need to be reminded is that democracy is not the same think as anarchy and liberty does not mean you can do anything you damned well please. That is why religious philosophers had to conceive the Golden Rule and the Silver Rule after all.

      Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Well you pretty sure can’t do any of those of you are terminally ill or living as a pauper burning trash to heat themselves in the night and sleeping with papers on park benches as I have seen when I went to the US.

  7. “It is now a rational economic decision for the average American to earn less money.”

    Unpossible–I’ve been assured many times that this would never happen, for example when Maryland instituted a millionaire tax.

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