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The Corner

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Sleeping with the Boss



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In The Washington Post, Marc Thiessen considers the situation faced by organizations such as the Eternal Word Television Network:

Moreover, many religious employers (including EWTN) “self-insure.” This means the religious organization acts as its own insurance company — paying for care directly and using insurers only to manage benefits and process claims. Many religious organizations took this step so they could opt out of state mandates to provide morally-objectionable services. As a result, in the case of religious employers like EWTN, there is no insurance company to provide the “free” abortion drugs and contraceptives Obama has mandated.

But, even if you don’t find them morally objectionable, isn’t there something else rather odd going on here? Ed Morrisey:

The notion of no-cost contraception mandates for the employer don’t make a lot of business or political sense, either.  In the latter context, who decided to put the employer in the bedrooms of their employees?  Does that sound like a good idea to anyone?  Many businesses self-insure, which means that their HR department will know exactly what they’re buying on behalf of the employee.

So the “right to privacy” the Supreme Court claimed to have found in Griswold vs Connecticut and Roe vs Wade will lead to thousands of businesses keeping information on the sexual and reproductive behaviors of their employees.

This is where I think Jonah, in his otherwise spiffy column, is not quite up to speed:

The freedom argument is old hat now. Obamacare supporters shrug off horror stories from Canada and Britain about concerns such as waiting periods and denied services — and hypothetical scenarios of “death panels.”

As a survivor of both the British and Canadian systems, I’ve peddled my fair share of Anglo-Canuck horror stories over the years. But it became obvious to me a while back that ObamaCare will be a health-care horror on a scale unknown to man. All “third party” systems (whether the third party is government or an insurer) have their inefficiencies. But, unlike Canada and the UK, Commissar Sebelius is piling a second third party on top of an existing one. A cynic might conclude it was explicitly intended to collapse what’s left of the existing system and lead to a direct, single-payer federal takeover – for which there won’t be enough money on the planet.



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