Big Brother Is Here

Imagine if during the beginning of the Iraq war, several American companies came out against the war publically, explaining how they believed too many soldiers lives would be lost, and the cost of the war would affect their businesses. Then imagine that the Republicans immediately demanded that the top executives of these companies come to Capitol Hill and explain their dissent.

Scary, right? Big Brother stuff.

That is exactly what is happening right now. On Thursday and Friday AT&T, Verizon, Caterpillar, Deere, Valero Energy, AK Steel and 3M announced publically that a tax provision in the new health care law will make it far more expensive to provide prescription drug coverage to their retired employees. Naturally this was embarrassing for the Democrats. So much so that they have decided to bring these executives to Capitol Hill to explain themselves.

Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, has summoned some of the nation’s top executives to Capitol Hill to defend their assessment that the new national health care reform law will cost their companies hundreds of millions of dollars in health insurance expenses. Waxman is also demanding that the executives give lawmakers internal company documents related to health care finances — a move one committee Republicans describes as “an attempt to intimidate and silence opponents of the Democrats’ flawed health care reform legislation.”

If this doesn’t bother you as an American citizen, it should.

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