Fast Food Workers Will Still Be Screwed Under Obamacare

After Obamacare passed, a broad variety of employers—including many of America's Most Asshole-ish Bosses—are going so far as to lay off employees in anticipation of the new health care costs they'd have to pay. Well, good news: business owners can just leave their employees uninsured. Problem solved!

There's good news and bad news, and they're interchangeable depending on where you fall on the capitalist-to-socialist spectrum. The WSJ reports that many fast food chains, including Wendy's, Chipotle, and Popeye's Chicken, are now telling investors that Obamacare may only cost them about $5K per restaurant per year (rather than the previous estimate of $25K), because—God Bless America—most employees will just decline health care coverage. And pay a price for it!

They say many employees will decline company-offered insurance, either because they can get insurance through Medicaid or a family member, or because they prefer to pay the penalty for not having health insurance. The penalty next year will be as low as $95 next year, much less than most employees will be asked to pay through company-sponsored insurance plans...

Ralph Bower, Popeye's president-U.S., said in an interview that fewer than 5% of employees have signed up for a plan that carries high deductibles and costs $2.50 a week. So he doesn't expect many more employees to enroll next year, when employees likely will have to pay about $25 a week for a plan offering more coverage.

So, to recap the situation: for fast food workers, the net effect of our new national health care plan will be to cost them $95 for the privilege of continuing to not have health care. Cool. (Related).

The important thing here is that Popeye's will still be able to maintain the low price of its Handcrafted Chicken Tenders, which is what got America sick in the first place.

[WSJ. Photo: Mark Turnauckas/ Flickr]