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Taft Midway Driller - Taft, CA
A blog 'for independent minds'
Making the ACA work, Part 2
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion ...
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion section of the MetroWest Daily News in Framingham, Mass. As such, our focus starts there and spreads to include Massachusetts, the nation and the world. Since successful blogs create communities of readers and writers, we hope the \x34& Co.\x34 will also come to include you.
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By Rick Holmes
Oct. 1, 2013 3:20 p.m.



The most salutory economic impact of the Affordable Care Act has been largely ignored in our long, painful and sometimes stupid debate about health care reform.  As I argue in an editorial today,



Consider the person who is unhappy with his or her job, but can’t afford to lose its employer-provided insurance. Maybe he’s always wanted to start a business of his own, but he has young children at home that can’t go without insurance. Maybe she’d like to switch to part-time work, or move to another city to take a promising new job. But the new job doesn’t come with insurance, and she’d likely be denied coverage in the individual market because of her medical history.

Economists have a term for this: job lock.  It applies to people whose careers are blocked simply because they cannot afford to lose the health insurance their families depend on.


Access to affordable health insurance through the exchanges – a milestone we should be celebrating today – unlocks the chains binding people to jobs they don’t like.  It is bound to have a positive impact on entrepreneurship and the economy.  It empowers workers.  It increases economic freedom, something conservatives should cheer.

The cost of job lock isn’t measured just in dollars and cents, but in dreams deferred, ambitions stifled and opportunities not taken.  That is the progress Republicans are intent on preventing. They will not succeed.



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