The headline writers and political spinners will celebrate an unemployment rate of 7.4 percent, even though they know this does not reflect the millions of people who have simply dropped out of the economy since President Obama took office.
What they aren’t likely to tell you is that the percentage of Americans participating in the workforce has dropped to its lowest point since 1981.
You aren’t likely to hear that more than 11.5 million Americans who want a job cannot find one or that 8.2 million Americans are counted as employed in spite of being trapped and struggling in part-time jobs when they want a rewarding full-time job.
It is even more likely that you will never learn that in July the number of people who could have been in the workforce rose by 204,000 but the civilian labor force actually declined by 37,000 people.
All you are likely to hear are the hallelujah chorus singing the praises of an unemployment rate that dropped.
It is hard to see the Obama administration's concession on an employer mandate for the Affordable Care Act as anything other than a) a political panic attack or b) an acknowledgement of failure.
This "delay" in implementation would never have happened if the administration believed the fragile economic recovery could absorb the blow of businesses cutting back hiring, salaries and hours to comply with ObamaCare — or that Democrats could defend it in the midterm elections next year.
The irony is, and politics is a magnet for irony, both parties could suffer as a result of this delay. Intentionally buried on July Fourth week while the nation turns its focus away from Washington, the news will be chewed over for months to come.
HSAs (Health Savings Accounts) are an extremely good idea, for they place responsibility for an individual's health in that individual's hand.
The money that is placed in the HSA stays there and can only be used for the legitimate medical purpose. It can accumulate over a lifetime, and you should be able to transfer your entire account at the time of death.
ObamaCare is supposedly the panacea to cure rapidly rising healthcare costs and lack of access for millions of uninsured Americans. It's continuing to prove just the opposite, with healthcare costs rising, in many cases quite dramatically. This has forced several businesses to reconsider whether they will offer healthcare coverage or accept the penalty, which in many cases is less expensive than offering the healthcare coverage. The other solution that many businesses are adopting is cutting workers to under 30 hours per week, which is the trigger for requiring healthcare coverage. In the long run, this means that people will have less access, and for those who do, the cost will be increased. Yet millions of people will listen to the mainstream media and the administration and continue to conclude that they have hit the healthcare lottery. This is a prime example of what happens when partisan politics and biased media are allowed to run rampant.
Last Sunday’s New York Times reported that many health insurers
have begun declaring war against their customers by aggressively jacking
up premiums. In another scandal, pseudo-libertarian Whole Foods CEO
John Mackey, who seems to think he is Ron Paul-Lite, called President
Obama’s healthcare law “fascism.” Mackey then retracted the “f” word
when talk of consumer boycotts against Whole Foods greeted his charge.
In the best news, Reps. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) and Henry Waxman
(D-Calif.) joined 43 other House members with a renewed push for the
public option that is supported by a significant majority of voters.
Sometimes, looking at the political discourse in this country, I wonder if we really understand the ramp-up effect of increasing government programs and power over time; unlike in business, unlike in nature, unlike in, well, real life, failure is not punished, but at best ignored, at worst rewarded. Once a program is in place, it is almost never repealed, even when Republicans obtain political power, because voters become dependent on it.
ObamaCare is the official the law of the land. We will now begin the process of unmasking many of the costs hidden deeply within this massive bill.
A decade from now there will be significant buyer’s remorse. The cost will affect not only consumers, but the healthcare providers as well.
There is no such thing as a free lunch, and that, without a doubt, includes healthcare. Either the quality of care must decrease significantly for the masses or the availability of care must decrease drastically.