More #Obamacare job losses. This thing needs to be killed.

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**Posted by Phineas

“But at least we won the election! Obama!!”

“But at least we won the election! Obama!!”

And the good news (1) keep rolling in:

Hospital layoffs and the Affordable Heath Care Act

The Affordable Care Act is designed to make health care easier to get, but now, one local hospital says Affordable Health Care is the reason it is laying people off.

Clifton Springs Hospital let almost 60 non-clinical employees go last Friday. Hospital officials says it’s all because they’re trying to get ready for the impact of the new health care act. The act changes the way health insurance is run and the way hospitals are paid.

The Affordable Care Act means many of you will be making more decisions when it comes to your own health care. Health care workers say co-pays and deductibles will be higher, that means things like x-rays and MRI’s will cost you  more. So people will be forced to decide if they really want them. That might mean fewer people in the hospital.

Clifton Springs Hospital is preparing for that now. Last Friday, Clifton Springs Hospital laid off 58-full time employees. The reason is to get ready for the Affordable Care Act that will unfold over the next four years.

Lewis Zulick, Interim CEO of Clifton Springs Hospital, said, “That was something that we realized, especially over the last 6 months or so, that we had to do something to really match up our revenue to our expenses. That really had to do with the kind of volume we were experiencing at the hospital.”

In other words, from reading the article, it’s due to Obamacare’s refusal to allow insurance companies to pay for certain procedures, pushing that cost off on the consumer. It’s not a decision the doctor and patient make together (“Do I need this?”), but one forced on the consumer by government regulation — and that written by supposed “experts,” bureaucrats who know nothing about individual patients and their needs. The hospital anticipates fewer people opting for such procedures, thus leading them to make the logical business decision to lay people off.

Ergo, Obamacare costs jobs.

One can argue, of course, that some at least of these were unnecessary procedures that drove up insurance costs, and I wouldn’t disagree with you. That’s what’s been called “defensive medicine,” in which doctors will order “just one more test” not so much out of medical need, but to avoid being sued in our litigation-plagued society. Conservative reformers have long complained of needless malpractice suits that drive up costs for everyone.

But the solution is tort reform, dealing with the abuse of the legal systems, not top-down command-and-control rationing and regulation of the insurance and medical industries. (Ironically, uber-progressive California was the first state to introduce major malpractice reform. In 1975, under Jerry Brown!) And certainly government should never come between a doctor and patient in deciding treatment.

Meanwhile…

A global medical technology company has laid off nearly 100 employees at its offices in Tennessee and Massachusetts and is blaming the layoffs on the medical device tax tied to ObamaCare.

London-based Smith & Nephew said Thursday it laid off fewer than 100 employees between the two offices, which operate as the company’s advanced surgical devices unit, according to The Commercial Appeal.

The company specializes in developing orthopedic reconstruction products, has nearly 11,000 employees and operates in over 90 countries, according to its website.

The Affordable Care Act includes a 2.3 percent tax on medical devices, which is expected to raise nearly $30 billion over the next decade. The tax is applied to gross sales revenues.

A tax is a cost of doing business. When you raise costs, the company has three choices: it can eat the lost profits, harming the owners — perhaps a small businessman and his family, or shareholders, which may include employees and pension funds; it can pass the higher cost on to the consumer, running the risk of pricing themselves out of the market; or, they can cut other costs to balance things out. Materials are one cost, but using cheaper materials is one sure way for a medical company to be sued out of business.

But, guess what? Labor is a cost, too!

And so, thanks to the medical device tax in Obamacare, nearly 100 (more) people have lost their jobs.

Eventually, the problems are going to accumulate and annoy and outright harm enough people that they will demand something be done. Democrats and weak-kneed Republicans will want to just tinker with it, promising “fixes.”

But there is no way fix the problems with Obamacare, because Obamacare is the problem. From its most basic concepts to its details, it is one huge, honking, accelerating disaster. However long it takes, it must be repealed, destroyed root and branch. Do to it what Rome did to Carthage.

Sigh. We had our chance in 2012 to take the monster out before he did too much damage. But, we blew it then, and people are suffering for it.

And so we fight on.

via Brian Faughnan and ST.

RELATED: Stephen Green on “How to ruin healthcare in just 2000 easy pages!”  Meanwhile, the cheapest plan for a family of five under Obamacare will cost up to $20,000 per year, per the IRS. That’s almost half the median family income in the US. What was that about “affordable, again?”

Footnote:
(1) For Orwellian definitions of “good,” that is.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

Journalistic integrity at CBS? Not when it comes to competitors…

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**Posted by Phineas

Or their innovative technology:

Recently, I found myself thrust in the middle of a kerfuffle when CBS ordered its subsidiary CNET to remove a product from consideration for a “Best of CES” award at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. I can never recall any major media company, much less a top-tier First Amendment protector likeCBS, publicly mandating an editorial decision based on business interests. The bizarre aggressiveness of CBS executives against the Hopper Sling disturbed me as it not only tainted the CES awards, but it hurt one of the world’s classiest media companies.

The controversy started when Dish introduced the Hopper, a product that allows Dish subscribers to skip through TV commercials under certain conditions. CBS and other networks sued Dish to stop the sale of the Hopper, despite a landmark 1984 Supreme Court decision that innovative products like the Hopper cannot be blocked by copyright owners if the product has many uses. Broadcasters never even challenged the legality of the TiVo personal video recorder back in 1999, which allows easy commercial fast-forwarding.

While the CBS legal challenge to the Hopper case chugs along, Dish used the 2013 International CES, to introduce the Hopper Sling, which allows Dish subscribers to stream one channel over the Internet while another is playing on the home TV. As owners of CES, we had an agreement with CNET to cover the show and recognize the best products. The CNET editorial team identified the Hopper Sling as one of the most innovative products of the show, but CBS brass ordered the CNET editors to remove it from CNET’s website.

For a top media company to impose editorial control so publicly for business reasons created a firestorm, resulting in stories in USA TODAY, Wall Street Journal and several tech blogs. CBS’ actions are puzzling, and troubling, on many levels.

One CNET reporter has already resigned over this, and there may be more on the way. While this is business and not politics, it should serve as a reminder to us all that the MSM is willing to bend or even alter the news to meet its goals. CBS’ “classy reputation” was already tarnished by Rathergate, and NBC News’ president has resigned “under controversy.” (1) And the major media reporting on so-called man-made climate change has been nothing short of disgraceful, agenda journalism at its worst.

Thanks to the space the Internet provides alternative voices, the “gatekeeper of what’s news” function of the MSM is dying, though they still need to be watched like a hawk. As Democratic pollster Pat Caddell recently said, the media has become an “enemy of democracy.” (2)

via Instapundit

Footnote:
(1) For a devastating and nauseating example of NBC’s (and other MSM) dishonesty, have a look through my blog-buddy’s Sister Toldjah’s Trayvon Martin archive, about the persecution of George Zimmerman. She moved mountains exposing their perfidy.
(2) With exceptions for certain individual reporters. But the overall MSM “culture” stinks with corruption.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

#MediaBias101: How the Charlotte Observer tries to do your thinking for you (UPDATE: Observer changes headline)

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First, the story:

During his first campaign for governor in 2008, then-Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory said there was a “culture of intimidation” in state government, with local mayors afraid to question the status quo in Raleigh.

Some Charlotte Democrats charged Friday that now-Gov. McCrory is practicing what he once preached against. They said the governor, a Republican, threatened the city with the loss of light-rail funding if it builds a streetcar with property tax dollars.

“He talked about the politics of intimidation during his campaign,” said Democrat John Autry, who supports building a streetcar. “I found it interesting that it seemed to me that he was meddling in local affairs.”

State Sen. Malcolm Graham, a Charlotte Democrat who chairs the Mecklenburg delegation, said he was “appalled” by McCrory’s comments about the possible loss of Lynx Blue Line funding. He said the governor’s comments would hold Blue Line money “hostage” and “dishonor” the commitment the state made to the city.

Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx, who succeeded McCrory in 2009, said Thursday that he was outraged.

Reading this story, you wouldn’t get the sense that the Charlotte Observer itself was accusing the new Governor of “meddling” in local affairs, but you would if all you read was the headline (which is what a lot of people do, which sets the tone for when they read the story itself).  Here’s the headline:

Charlotte Democrats criticize McCrory for meddling in local affairs

Screencap, just in case they change it:

Charlotte Observer headline

Really?

The headline should read something like this: “Charlotte Democrats say McCrory meddling in local affairs”. In fairness, on the website’s home page teaser for the story (where you click the link to get the full story) it reads, “Local Democrats say McCrory meddling.” That’s perfect, and they should have carried that over to the article itself.  How much do you want to be the print version has the screencapped headline above? I’ll check today.

Let’s contrast an objective headline with their subjective, biased headline.

Objective (mine): :“Charlotte Democrats accuse McCrory of meddling in local affairs”

Subjective (theirs): “Charlotte Democrats criticize McCrory for meddling in local affairs”

See what I mean? They definitively state in the headline that Pat McCrory is “meddling”, and in essence, are doing your thinking for you. The DEMOCRATS allege he is meddling, and the Charlotte Observer’s main headline seems to support that accusation.  This isn’t exactly surprising, seeing as the Observer is now taking the unprecedented (for them) step of relentlessly hammering a Governor of this state while he still HOLDS the office (he IS a Republican after all), rather than waiting until they are no longer are in office (which they do for Democrats).   Article after article, opinion piece after opinion piece, editorial after editorial, have badgered the former Charlotte Mayor since before he even took the oath of office.    The Observer also gleefully reports that McCrory’s approval ratings are going down, which is not shocking considering their steady drumbeat of (mostly bogus) criticisms of his first few weeks in office.

Expect more of this to come.  It’s a lot of work staying on top of what a sitting Governor is up to, trying to keep him accountable, and occasionally smear him with baseless accusations? The Observer would much rather sit back under a Democrat Governor and let the “good times roll” and all that.

Just thought you should know. :)

Update – 4:49 PM: Was alerted by fellow Charlottean Cedar Posts that the Observer has changed the headline.  It now reads as it should:

Headline change

Much better.

Results! :)