Friday, January 16, 2009

Failure, Mr. Obama, Will Be the Only Option

Who is to decide which things must fail, the employee who attempts to buck the evidence-driven policies of their company, or the evidence-driven companies themselves?

"Failure is never an option--not in America." Barrak Obama to CBS's Catie Couric

"COURIC: 'And let me just end by asking you about the stimulus package...some critics have said, "hey, that didn't really happen the last time." Why will it this time?'

"OBAMA: 'Well, there are a couple of things. [ ] We're gonna invest billions of dollars in health information technology so that we can drive down costs for average families. [ ] But the general framework, the general outlines of the plan are ones we have run by economists from the left and the right, conservative, liberal. This is a package that I think is gonna make sense. I have every confidence that it's gonna work. [ ] '

"COURIC: 'And if it doesn't work?'

"OBAMA: 'Failure is never an option. Not in America.'"

So, investing billions will drive down costs for average families? How? This pie-in-the-sky thinking ignores that those billions will take generations before a pay-off is seen. By then, the cost of living, combined with any possible inflation, will make today's $1000 emergency room visit cost us--perhaps--double or triple that.

By then, economists will be tripping over themselves to prove that the nominal price at that time, say in thirty years, actually is less than the nominal price was before the investment of those billions. I think the value in real-dollars will not prove a savings to anyone. It will cost our posterity billions more than was spent.

Ask yourself this: if, in a real-world economy--in other words, one that is not manipulated by government policies--the cost of doing business for a hospital proved that such computerized infrastructure would actually save their patients money, why wouldn't they do it anyway?

We see hospitals competing all the time. One cancer center competes with another, perhaps not only for prices by being as effective and evidence-driven as possible, but also certainly for the best hope and the best care.

Hospitals who want to keep their emergency rooms filled compete with others in their area for the quickest service possible. One emergency room in my area advertises "no waiting" service for heart and other fatal symptoms. Another advertises "no more than a 30 minute wait" for any emergency.

In a recent news piece on Fox News Network, the reporter was showing the debate between companies that raise insurance rates on obese employees, or otherwise take some action against the obesity, vs the obese people who say it is discrimination. The reporter even cited several cities around the nation where such things as "girth" and "body fat percentages" are protected by law--as "traits" and other silly descriptions.

But the reporter made it very clear that the corporations would not care to day anymore than they cared before if it was not for the fact that every thing a company does today must be driven by evidence, and the evidence is that obesity costs money and decreases profits because 368 million work days are lost as a direct relationship to obesity in this country every year.

Suits against employers who attempt such measures sometimes make the claim that no employer has the right to tell an employee what he or she must do or can or cannot do outside the workplace.

To that, I say it may or may not be true, since some employers have gotten away with the same tactics against smokers. But an employer does have the right to say that as soon as an employee walk into the workplace they must be healthy enough to work. Employers have always been able to send home employees who have the flu, or some other spreadable disease. It isn't fair to let one employee cost other employees a share of their paycheck because they themselves are home sick.

So how can it be fair to let an obese employee cost an otherwise healthy employee a larger pay rate or a larger check from the profit-sharing pool because the obese employee cost the company a measurable share of earnings?

"In August 1990, Stephen Grindle was hired by Watkins Motor Lines as a driver/dock worker. The job's duties included loading, unloading, and arranging freight. The job's description noted that it involved climbing, kneeling, bending, stooping, balancing, reaching, and repeated heavy lifting.

"In November 1995, he sustained an on-the-job injury. [ ]he commenced a leave of absence...[ ] On June 26, 1996, Watkins ordered Grindle to see the industrial clinic doctor, [who] found that he had a limited range of motion and that he could duck and squat but was short of breath after a few steps [and] noted that on physical examination, the most notable item was that Grindle weighed 405 pounds. [Though] Grindle met U.S. Department of Transportation standards for truck drivers, he couldn't safely perform the requirements of his job. Watkins placed him on safety hold. Since he was on safety hold, he eventually was fired because he was unable to return to work in 180 days.

"Grindle believed he was discharged because of his weight, so he filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The agency filed a claim on his behalf in federal court claiming Watkins' actions violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. The trial court ruled in the company's favor..." HRHero.Com

If, as Obama says, failure is never an option in American, who is to decide which things must fail? It must be either the employee who wishes to remain obese who fails in his attempts to buck the evidence-driven desires for the best for their company, or it must be the evidence-driven desires that fail.

Obama wishes to spread the wealth, and legally speaking, it can be done two ways: the obese person can lose weight or be fired in order to spread more wealth (less wasted work days) among the other employees:

or it can spread the wealth by giving to the obese employee what he/she is taking from the healthy employees.

The second method is the method of Marxism, whereby we get the humanist dictate "From each according to his ability..." meaning the obese person, "to each according to his needs"--which means the obese person.

There is no way that dictate can ever benefit the socialist-valued "greater good". That "greater good" would be all the other employees who are not lowering profits. Instead, to the Marxist, it means we all have needs and if the need of the obese person is to have a paycheck, it must come from the paychecks of all the others, "according to his ability."

Obama's plans to invest billions upon billions of dollars until they equal into the trillions means that money must come from each according to his ability, because when payback time comes in twenty to fifty years--when we are dead or collecting social security--the only one's paying it back will be those who can do so.

Those who can afford the payback because of "ability" will not be the Stephen Grindles and all the other Americans with "needs."

And it may not be our grandchildren either, because anecdotal evidence, collected by soviet bureaucrats, has it that when honest employees see the dishonest, the corrupt, and the sick collecting their loot, then they too will become dishonest by claiming "illness" in order not to have to contribute to the "common good" of those who take without giving.

Sally and Jose and Matumbe will become active hypochondriacs, but they will never believe their illnesses to be real; they will only believe their illnesses are necessary if they are to be treated equally with people who collect the loot, because, after all, "to each according to his need." Let the "chumps" provide civilization with their "abilities."

If psychology is "evidence," then "evidence-driven psychology" backs up the anecdotal stories collected by the soviets in their own Marxist empire. When the cost to society became too large for the economy to keep providing the sick with their "needs," they were simply taken out and shot.

That is the way that an "evidence-driven" collectivism solves its problems, or it collapses.

But the U.S. would never become that evil and ruthless, which means, Mr. Obama, that failure of your policies and a total collapse of the non-capitalist economy is the only option in America.

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