As this story
from Businessweek shows, many companies are getting squirrelly when it comes to healthcare. Prices keep going up and this is an example of what one business - Scotts Miracle Grow - did to get employees to be healthier. But while company lawyers apparently decided it was legal to fire people who wouldn't stop smoking, some of the actions of the company, particularly of the CEO, sound as though they border on harrassment. Even if Scotts wins the suit brought by the Massachusetts employee fired because he was a smoker - right before he became eligible for healthcare help to stop smoking - you have to wonder if you can ultimately win when you appear to blame employees for business problems. Yup, health care was a frightening 20% of profits. So how much did waste in marketing run? How about executive perks? Employees can help drop some of the cost, but the relentless upward drive of health care isn't a result of individual choices; it's a systemic problem of a dysfunctional industry
I wrote about a couple of years ago. Things haven't improved.