How Obamacare makes things worse for the working class

A young woman from New York state called into the Rush Limbaugh Show last week, unsure what to do about Obamacare. She had an irregular income from year to year, and so one year she might be eligible for Medicaid and the next year she’d have to get healthcare on the exchange.

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But this young woman was worried.  She’d had a run-in with the State of New York when she’d overstayed on unemployment and didn’t want to get caught in some ineligibility trap as her income varied from year to year.

It’s not just the folks getting cut back to 29 hours per week that are getting hammered by Obamacare.

What should the young woman do? I’ll tell you. She’ll probably go for the Medicaid and work off the books. By doing that, she will appear to the government as a consistent dependent that qualifies for government assistance, and she doesn’t have to worry about the hassle of switching from one form of health care to another and falling foul of some undotted “i” or uncrossed “t”.

Off-the-books work is a huge problem in America. There’s even a book about it, “Off the Books: The Underground Economy and the Urban Poor” by Sudhir Alladi Venkatesh.  It’s about the enterprising off-the-books workers in South Chicago, the African-American area just south of lordly Hyde Park where our president lives when he’s at home.

A typical off-the-books worker in South Chicago might run an auto repair business on a vacant lot or sell t-shirts on the street. But at least he can get his health care at the local government clinic.

Further up the food chain, you get the auto mechanic in Florida who wants to go legit, because he wants to buy a home, and he needs a legitimate job to establish income for his credit score. Problem is, he can’t find an auto-mechanic job that’s on the books.

Even further up the off-the-books food chain is the fencing contractor that pays Mexicans with cash and doesn’t even have a bank account. If he were legit, he’d have to pay minimum wage plus payroll taxes plus unemployment taxes plus workers comp. And this marginally literate man would have to do payroll and file paperwork and deal with bureaucrats all day – while keeping up with the latest regulations.

Everyone is concerned about the troubles of what the Democrats like to call “working families.” But the regulatory state has reduced the proud working man to a rat in a maze.  He has to scurry around, working off-the-books while qualifying for benefits, and now he or she has got to figure out a way to cop a subsidy on Obamacare while still earning a living and paying the bills.

Compared to this, the life of the educated salaryman is easy. Of course it is. The ruling class understands the needs of the educated middle class, and it’s created a world fit for the educated to live and thrive in.

Meanwhile, the working class is in a world of hurt. On the one hand they can’t afford to give up the government benefits; on the other hand they don’t earn enough to go legit.

And Obamacare’s only going to make things worse.

What do you think?

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