A large Pa. employer supports ‘Medicare for All’ to ‘remove an albatross from American business’
By Jacob McKean
We’ve publicly and privately supported single payer health care for quite some time now. As a growing business, we’ve had to deal with privatized health care every step of the way. As an entrepreneur, I had to take the terrifying step of giving up my health insurance when I left my last job in order to start MT. When we opened, I had to navigate the immense difficulty and expense of buying health insurance for a small company. And as we’ve grown, we’ve had to cope with the absurd costs and complexities of providing health insurance to hundreds of people across multiple states.
It doesn’t have to be this way. It’s long been clear to me—as both the CEO of this company and as a human being who needs health care—that privatized health insurance is an on-going disaster for people, for businesses, and for our country. I have not been shy about this stance. A little over a year ago, we hosted a workshop for small business owners to learn about Medicare for All and why they should support it. We have lobbied our elected representatives in meetings, letters, and phone calls. We have joined two different business alliances for Medicare for All and worked in a variety of ways to support their efforts. I have written op-eds and contributed money. But our advocacy does not, and will not, stop there.
In the weeks before the COVID-19 crisis hit, I had set-up a collaboration with a legendary brewery that also strongly supports Medicare for All. It was going to be a benefit for Businesses for Medicare for All, one of the groups we both support. Now, in the throes of this crisis, that plan is obviously on hold: we can’t travel, of course, but more importantly, Modern Times is now in a fight for its life. That fight—obscenely, bizarrely, and unnecessarily—is also a fight to prevent our employees from being kicked off their health care in the middle of a pandemic.
Our support for Medicare for All has not changed, and in fact, reality has now loudly endorsed our position. Since we can’t release the collaboration beer as we’d originally planned, I decided to name this non-collaborative barrel-aged special release “Medicare for All, Yesterday,” since that is very clearly when we needed it. It is not a benefit beer; frankly, we can’t afford it to be. The quantity is also very limited, which makes it suboptimal as an awareness raising thing, but it’s the best we could do under the circumstances.
So whether you’re able to snag a bottle of this beer or not, we hope you’ll consider joining us in the fight for a dignified, coherent, and just health care system. Our lives, and yours, depend on it.