Baskin: Government makes problems worse

Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem," said President Ronald Reagan at his inaugural speech. He saw government's repeated attempts to improve society lead to an exacerbation of its problems.

With the passage of Obamacare, intended to fix the "problems" of our health care system, we once again are witnessing how government is not a solution to our problem. Government is the problem.

The intent of the Affordable Care Act was to bring affordable and better health care to all Americans and at the same time reduce the budget deficit and create jobs.

The claim that the new law will improve the quality of our health care, however, doesn't stand up to logic. Since our health care resources are limited, how can the addition of 34 million people to the system improve the quality for everyone?

It seems apt to consider the opinions of our doctors and their perspective on this new law. A recent poll conducted by Reuters showed that two thirds of doctors fear this health care reform will do more harm than good. The new red tape will cause doctors to work harder for less and "block competitive innovation," wrote 85,000 physicians in a letter to current Speaker John Boehner and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi before the vote on the bill. If President Barack Obama truly felt we had the best health care system in the world, why did we have to give it an overhaul?

Supporters of this bill claim it will help reduce the budget deficit. They use preliminary Congressional Budget Office numbers to back their claim. The CBO numbers are correct, but not valid. The CBO scored the bill based on a 10-year period. This period includes years when revenue enhancements begin, but benefits do not. Therefore, the analysis does not match revenues with costs. For example, the analysis claims the bill will save $138 billion in new entitlement revenue, but never takes into account the $70 billion it will have to spend on benefits at a later date.

The majority of jobs created in America are created by small businesses. The new health care law mandates that all small businesses with 50 or more employees must provide health coverage for their employees. For those businesses that don't provide coverage, a $2,000 fine will be levied on the business for each worker who is not provided with insurance.

This becomes very problematic for the "it will help create jobs" claim by the proponents of the new legislation. The reason is simple: What small business owner with 49 employees would be willing to hire an extra employee if it will automatically increase business costs by $1 million or more if insurance is offered? What will happen to the businesses with over 50 employees that cannot afford to provide their employees with coverage? How can they afford the new coverage and stay competitive so they can stay in business? Perhaps they pass the extra cost to the consumers. Can you say, "Hello overseas jobs?"

Furthermore, in 2009 the National Federation of Independent Business Research Foundation conducted a study on an employer mandate for businesses. The study concluded that the employer mandate would lead to a 1.6 million-person increase in job loss between 2009 and 2013. More than 1 million of those jobs lost would come from small businesses.

These reforms have created higher costs, worse care, larger deficits and higher unemployment. This starkly contrasts proponents' "good intentions" for the law.