Sunday, November 16, 2014

Regulation as taxes and tyranny

I've often said that liberalism (the post-modern version) always ends at the butt of a gun. That is, the essence of trying to get people to do that which is not in their best interest requires force. This is why, short of a tyannical state, liberalism usually fails.  Two news items this week make the point nicely.
First, as the employer penalties for the Affordable Care Act kick in next year, business is already finding a way to work around them. Because Obamacare waives the penalites for employees who qualify for Medicaid, employers are off-loading workers into the bankrupt federal-state helath care program.  Problem is, when you add 3 million patients to an already strapped program which reimburses physicians below market rates (this is how the left aims to lower health care costs) you get fewer doctors. The net result of this market pervision is skyrocketing costs to the taxpayer coupled with dangerously long wait times for care. Hope and change, eh?
The other newsie is McDonald's dismal earnings report for the thrid quarter and what they plan on doing about it. It's easy to joke that the massive burger chain once known for fast and cheap food now sells neiher.  But corporare strategy aside, when government at the behest of big labor forces $15 an hour wage hikes on franchisees who are essentially mom and pop entities employing teens and secondary bread winners...well, sometihng's got to give. So, as the WSJ notes, buried in the report was the company's plan to move to automation (i.e., touch screens for ordering, etc.) as soon as feasible.  Again, the net result of state interference, this time in labor markets, is palpably negative for those workers replaced with machines.

Regulatory taxation, and that is bascially what we're talking about, works only so long as those in the cxrosshairs continue to play along. As the above examples suggest, that's usually not very long. Consequently, there are only two choices.  Let the markets clear naturally through the price mechanism that best reflects consumer preferences or wait for the jackboots to arrive.

No comments: