No bias here

From The Kansas City Star newspaper: New labor laws in Kansas and Missouri bolster the boss

The lead-off:

The balance of power between businesses and their workers shifted in Kansas and Missouri this year — in favor of the boss.

So, what are these laws? From the article:

Employees fired for being late for work without good cause will be barred from unemployment benefits if they are warned first and if the employee is notified of the employer’s attendance requirements. The new law no longer requires the warning to be in writing.

Laid-off workers can no longer collect a severance payment and unemployment simultaneously. An employee receiving a six-month severance, for instance, has to wait six months to draw unemployment.

The length of unemployment benefits could be shortened. Currently, the unemployed in Kansas can draw benefits for 26 weeks. Starting in 2014, a person will qualify for a maximum of 26 weeks of unemployment if the jobless rate is 6 percent or greater. Eligibility will drop to 20 weeks and then to 16 weeks as unemployment falls.

Guidelines have been changed for assessing workplace injuries, a move that labor supporters say will lead to reduced benefits for injured workers.

Those new laws and others that ban Wyandotte County from requiring union-scale wages on public jobs and require drug tests for unemployment benefits, critics say, add up to a bad year for labor.


A similar controversy over unemployment erupted this year in Missouri when lawmakers passed legislation making it harder for employees fired for misconduct to qualify for unemployment.

The first thing I noticed is that most of these didn’t seem to do anything to the boss. Most seem to set more restrictions on collecting unemployment.

Here are my recommended edits to the headline and lead-off: New labor laws in Kansas and Missouri bolster the boss taxpayers


The balance of power between businesses taxpayers and their workers and people collecting unemployment shifted in Kansas and Missouri this year — in favor of the boss taxpayers.

I’m amazed that the reporter found critics to these laws. Why should taxpayers reward people for misconduct on the job and drug use? Seems like we have better use of our dollars than that.

Nanny State – Kansas

Kansas lawmakers are considering a soda tax to raise tax revenues.

This is wrong on a few levels.

Thomas Jefferson sums up the first level with this quote:  “A government big enough to supply everything you need, is big enough to take everything you have.”

From the article:  “Obesity-related illnesses in Kansas cost Medicaid and Medicare $281 million every year.”   I digress: obesity-related illness in Kansas costs Medicaid and Medicare nothing.  It costs taxpayers.  Medicaid and Medicare are nothing more than a pass-through for taxpayer funds.

This is how the nanny state, or the big government Jefferson describes, works.  It’s intrusive rationale goes like this: If “we” supply your health care, then “we” have the right to raise your taxes on the things we think increase “our” costs.

Where will it stop?

The second level why this is wrong is because the reason Kansas is thinking about this tax is because it is running a deficit.  Like many governments, it increased spending too much in the good times and now, with the economy in a downturn, it needs to plug holes in the budget.   We’re tightening our belts.  Government needs to do the same thing.   Hypocrisy.

The third level is that this is a perfect illustration of how meddling government causes unintended consequences and then tries to fix those consequences with more intrusions.  Those intrusions costs more consequences.  If they left things alone, things would work out.

People don’t pay the direct costs of increased medical care caused by their irresponsible eating habits because much of health care spending has been pushed to third parties – government and insurance companies.

Further, government doesn’t allow insurance companies to charge premiums based on key health risk factors.  Home and auto insurers can.  Higher auto insurance rates for risky driving keeps us more prudent into our driving habits.  We take responsibility because we don’t want to face higher insurance rates.

So, through government we’ve managed to remove some of the natural signals that tell people to stay health and, shocker, people aren’t taking care of themselves.

So, now we try to push the cost back onto them in the form of a soda tax.  Soon it could be a Snicker’s tax, a motorcycle tax, a driving your car more the 25 miles to work tax.  New York is already going after salt intake.

Thomas Jefferson knew how this would play out 200 years ago.