Socialized Medicine is Great – As long As It Doesn’t Affect Me

jobs1Those about to lose their job or have their hours cut  – send your thank-you letters to Congress and the White House. 

The trend in school and government workers having their  hours cut comes as the chorus of unions opposed to mandates in ObamaCare grow.  Union workers,  spoiled by their generous taxpayer-funded benefits  that far exceeded that of the private sector,  are having to face a stark reality – you have aided and abetted the death of the goose that laid the golden egg.

Tough luck guys – you supported it, you helped Obama pass it and now you must accept the consequences. 

A record 28.1 million workers are now part-time even though the recession “ended” 4 years ago, according to fuzzy government math.  For those of us that live in the real world – the recession never ended.

Full-time work fell by 9.4 million from 2007 through 2010, according to the Census bureau.  During that time, the ratio of part-timers rose to 20% vs 13% in 1968 and 17% in 1980.  According to the government  the economy has only created 130,000 full-time positions so far this year vs. 557,000 part-time jobs.  Hold on to your hats – those part-time job numbers are set to soar!

Virginia Governor McDonnell said he will limit state part-time employees to a 29 hour maximum work schedule to save Virginia anywhere from $61 million to $110 million a year.  Those hour cuts will also apply to Community College workers.  Cities and counties within the state are following suit.

Indiana is cutting  teacher assistants, substitute teachers, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, janitors and coaches  to part-time status to avoid having to offer health insurance.  Wake County Public School System in North Carolina is considering restricting its 3,300 plus substitute teachers  to less than 30 hours a week, because to provide insurance would cost taxpayers about $5.2 million.

Nebraska public school districts are contemplating a cut in hours for an estimated thousands of nonteaching jobs such as bus drivers, cafeteria cooks, aides, janitors and administrative workers, while others may be layed off and a hiring freeze instituted.  Salt Lake City, Utah is reducing part-time hours for between 1,000 to 1,200 aides, substitute teachers, administrators, cafeteria workers, bus drivers and security officers in the Granite School District.

Youngtown State University in Eastern Ohio will limit the hours of non-union part-time employees to 29 hours a week or less so they don’t have to provide insurance.  Pennsylvania will cut hours for some 200 adjunct faculty members at Allegheny County Community college and another 200 part-time workers will be limited to 29 hours a week.

Floyd County, Indiana, has announced plans to cut hours of part-time government workers below 29.  Butler County, Kansas is now classifying part-time workers at 29 hours or less.  Long Beach, California, that bastion of liberalism,  is now restricting most of its 1,600 part-time workers to few than 27 hours to save $2 million in health care costs. Long Island, NY school districts are considering dumping school workers into the state health exchange to save money.

These decisions affect real live workers who now will have to manage with working fewer hours for less pay in an economy where real inflation is growing  and will explode under new EPA regulations.

This adverse effect is above and beyond that created by the huge work disincentives created by “ACA subsidy cliff” and Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion (which alone could reduce employment by nearly 1 million).  We already have a labor market stuck in the mud  with an employment-to-population ratio that has declined to levels not seen since the early 1980’s.

It is ironic – While turning America into the land of starving part-time workers, ObamaCare at least may help fix the soaring pension and retiree health benefits owed [and underfunded] by government agencies across the country.  But that is of little consolation to those forced into poverty.


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