How ObamaCare Will Kill Jobs

A blog about business and economics.
Sept. 4 2012 12:42 PM

How ObamaCare Will Kill Jobs

Kevin Drum has a nice blog post about how this time around he has a personal stake in Democratic victory despite general prosperous white maleness. Specifically, if ObamaCare is implemented as planned he'll be able to retire early:

You see, I've never really intended to keep blogging until I'm 65. I might, of course. Blogging is a pretty nice job. But I'd really like to have a choice, and without Obamacare I probably won't. That's because I'm normal: I'm in my mid-50s, I have high blood pressure and high cholesterol, a family history of heart trouble, and a variety of other smallish ailments. Nothing serious, but serious enough that it's unlikely any insurance company would ever take me on. So if I decided to quit blogging when I turned 60, I'd be out of luck. I couldn't afford to be entirely without health insurance (the 4x multiplier that hospitals charge the uninsured would doom me all by itself), and no one would sell me an individual policy. I could try navigating the high-risk pool labyrinth, but that's a crap shoot. Maybe it would work, maybe it wouldn't.
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Keep this in mind if you hear conservatives citing a CBO study that says ObamaCare will reduce employment. There is such a study, but it's talking about what Drum's talking about here. ObamaCare will make it easier for people to retire early, which will reduce aggregate employment levels. That's a real thing with real economic consequences, but not the same kind of thing (or same kind of consequences) as a big decrease in employer demand for labor.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.