Free Markets, Free People

Health Care Reform:When Is A “Cadillac Plan” Not A “Cadillac Plan”?

Why when you’re a part of a favored special interest group of course:

Unions tentatively struck a deal Tuesday to exempt collectively bargained healthcare plans from a tax on high-cost plans expected to be used to help raise revenue for the healthcare overhaul.

The left constantly clamors for “fairness” but quickly throws such concerns under the bus when it is possible that one of their favored special interest groups may be negatively effected.

As Philip Klein notes:

If this policy is adopted, it would mean that there could be two Americans receiving the exact same benefits, but one American may be taxed and one wouldn’t, and the only difference would be one of them being a member of a union. This is unseemly and unfair, even by the standards of Obamacare. It has nothing to do with policy-making. It’s simply an outright bribe to a constituency that has contributed handily to Democratic campaigns.

Legislative favoritisim? How “progressive”.

It doesn’t get anymore blatant than this, folks.



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17 Responses to Health Care Reform:When Is A “Cadillac Plan” Not A “Cadillac Plan”?

  • I’m a wholehearted opponent of any sort of government involvement in health care (from prescription laws to medical licensing to insurance “reform”), but I am also a union member with a “Cadillac” medical plan.  If this monstrosity is doomed to pass in some form, should I root for a special tax exemption for myself, or what?

    • Isn’t it taking things a little far to be against medical licensing? I would prefer to know if I need a doctor that they have been to med school and not just Granny Clampets moonshine still. Also, insurance reform isn’t a bad thing. Reform like allowing cross border competition and such. There are things that could be done to improve the ‘system’ just not what they are proposing.
      As for the exemption for Unions could we use that to get around this crud bill. Just create a new Union called Americans to get around BS Bill Union. We could all join and negotiate with a private insurer for coverage then be exempt from the taxes. Only requirement for joining is be an American.

      • Isn’t it taking things a little far to be against medical licensing?

        I think the point is that medical licensing does not have to be done by the government. Like anything else, depending on the government to do it means accepting that it will be done haphazardly and is subject to political influence.

        I too would prefer competing private alteratives for medical licensing. With information easier to acquire than ever, I think that would be better than government licensing. It would also allow innovation that government is slow or never going to adopt. Right now, we have nurse practioners because many activities in healthcare are rote or repetitive, and it’s not cost effective to have a full doctor perform them. The more technology changes healthcare, the more those roles need to evolve, and a government-run licensing scheme is not the best way to foster that kind of evolution.

  • This demands a redefinition of “collective bargaining” to mean a deal for at least 20% of a company’s workforce.

  • Dan:
    Rooting for the exemption depends on how much you want genuflect to government for your health care plan.

  • According to the Slate explanation copied ‘way below, I have a “Cadillac Plan.”
    I am a 63 yr old female, divorced, good health, no meds, healthy lifestyle, and I have a small group health insurance plan with a $5,000 deductible. My 2010 annual premium is $6966.96, of which $3,000 will be paid by my employer. I will contribute the maximum for my age ($4,050) into a HSA account.  Total cost: $11,016.96.
    Per Slate: The finance committee defines high-cost or “Cadillac” as any plan with premiums higher than $8,000 for individuals or $21,000 for families. Keep in mind that these figures include everything you and your employer spend on health care except for the deductible: premiums for medical (the portions paid by you and by your employer), dental, and vision coverage, as well as any money you put into a flexible spending account,….
    What a ripoff.

  • Maybe this finally explains why all of DC seems to be loopy …
    iPhone Photo of “cocaine lines” posted online has embedded GPS coordinates of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C.

  • If they exempt union members, then every non-union person in the USA is going to be screaming bloody murder.

  • McQ The left constantly clamors for “fairness” but quickly throws such concerns under the bus when it is possible that one of their favored special interest groups may be negatively effected.

    This is beyond run-of-the-mill pandering to a special interest. 

    I think that the dem leadership, despite their propaganda, spin, lies, and hysteria about “tea baggers”, have finally recognized that ObamaCare is absolute electoral poison to their loathesome party.  However, instead of backing off and starting from scratch, they are going kamikaze, confident that control of the medical system will ultimately give them complete control of the electorate even if they get clobbered in the next couple of elections.  They are willing to sink their own ship because they think that they can raise it later and rebuild it into a bigger, stronger powerhouse.

    However, they can’t afford to lose the unions even temporarily.  Union money, union manpower, union votes, and union goons are the most important part of the dems’ base after MiniTru; they’ve GOT to do what they can to keep the unions happy so that the money continues to flow*.  If all those union voters, who have faithfully voted democrat and allowed their union dues to go to the democrat party in the belief that the dems are “for the working man”, realize that the dems will throw THEM under the bus^, they’ll break ranks from the dems and probably never come back.  That would be a catastrophe for the dems for years to come.

    In short, this is damage control.  The dems are willing to so openly pander because they know they’ve f*cked themselves and are desperately trying to stop the ship blowing up while it settles to the bottom.


    (*) Look at who’s providing a huge chunk of change to bankroll Coakley’s increasingly desperate campaign: SEIU.

    (^) Imagine telling an auto worker in Detroit that he’s going to lose his sweetheart insurance plan to provide health care for illegal aliens.

  • Seems like we’re all union members now. I’m starting the After-Five Beer-Drinking Management Union. Membership dues are pretty fierce… buy a round for the union boss (and he’ll buy you one in exchange). Sign up at any place where beer products are proudly served.

  • Republicans are tital idiots if they don’t make hay from this.  Imagine turning the populace’s envy against the Democrats for a change.  Go ahead and loudly proclaim the average salary of the average union guy and how the Dems want to let them off the hook so that the non union worker has to pay the tab.

  • How is this different from what exists now with Cafeteria plans? Do you pay income tax on the money used to pay your medical insurance premiums?

  • You are all mising a point viz: this is a great tool for unions to use in organizing: Sign with our union and we’ll get you good health care without a Caddy tax. This won’t last long once the need for revenue for Obamacare heats up in a few years, but in the meantime, bring on the suckers…Those who think that telling private sector workers what union workers get in benefits are going to be disappointed. Private sector unionism is steadily dying. The swindle that gave GM and Chrysler to the UAW was a dying blast. SEIU is the wave of tomorrow’s unionism: of government workers. Why do you think SEIU is howling for Obamacare? Think of the chance this will give them to dragoon new members once they are working for Uncle Sam.