Thursday, February 13, 2014

You can do it, but....

You've probably noticed that the Obama administration seems to have shifting rules for employer mandates and when they go into effect. Patterico noticed something else, quoting a Fox News article on the latest rules:
Further, Treasury officials said Monday that businesses will be told to “certify” that they are not shedding full-time workers simply to avoid the mandate. Officials said employers will be told to sign a “self-attestation” on their tax forms affirming this, under penalty of perjury.
Isn't that nice? Patterico:
Attest that you didn’t do something you have a right to do — and if you’re lying you go to jail. How about that?

Let’s be very clear about this. I feel confident in saying that there is no law in existence that prevents employers from laying off (or reducing the hours of) workers in order to avoid a burdensome federal regulation. I feel confident in saying this because if such an incredible intrusion into the management of small business were ever proposed, I think we would have heard about it. If I am wrong, and there is some small poisonous overlooked provision in ObamaCare or another law that imposes such a requirement, then this is an even bigger story than the one we’re currently looking at. I sincerely doubt it.

So take it as a given: the Obama administration says they will require employers to certify, under penalty of perjury, that they have not taken an action that they have every legal right to take.. This is a breathtaking abuse of power that deserves to be screamed from the rooftops of every home in the land. It should be a banner headline in every newspaper, not just a muttered afterthought in a mundane story about politics.
Should be, but isn't. And we know why -- because on any topic, at any time, too many people are saying something like this:

The good news is that it's possible we'll have a Fourth Estate that actually cares about oversight in about 3 years.

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