No on California Proposition 8

Proposition 8 would cap dialysis companies’ revenue to 115 percent of some costs, mostly labor. It comes amid disputes between a labor organization trying to unionize workers at California’s two largest dialysis companies. The labor organization, SEIU-UHW, is using Prop 8 as leverage in negotiations, as they have in the past.

If it passes, dialysis businesses could respond in uncertain ways: increase pay in order to continue current charges (the intended effect); charge less; and/or close or stop opening centers due to unprofitability. Some combination of these is most likely. If dialysis becomes less available, patients with kidney failure could have to drive farther and/or wait longer for treatment, at best inconveniencing them, at worst risking their health.

This labor dispute doesn’t belong on the ballot. It exemplifies regulatory capture, in addition to wasting voters’ time and energy. That dialysis patients are potential losers makes it particularly egregious. Vote no.

Economist. Founder and president of the UBI Center. Studied at MIT and UC Berkeley. YIMBY. Former Google data scientist.