Politicians talk about the uninsured. Special interests argue on behalf of those with pre-existing conditions. But why is no one wondering how doctors are affected by the new law? They’re the ones on the frontlines dealing directly with new patients, as well as the red tape that makes bureaucracies go round.
Politicians proclaim the benefits of small business while on the campaign trail. But when they meet in the seedy halls of Congress, they have no problem doing whatever they can to stifle, regulate, and subdue their progress. Instead of siding with entrepreneurs, these politicians often side with political allies and cronies that helped put them into office.
Just because you’re retired doesn’t mean you have to stop working. Especially now that you have all the time in the world to do what you really want. Entrepreneurs don’t only come out of Silicon Valley. They come from all walks of life, from all different ages. If you’re retired and want to stay active while you relax, then find out the steps you need to take in order to start, manage, and grow your next small business.
Technology brought the world together. But has it gone too far? Decades ago, mail was delivered by hand. Now it’s delivered in seconds. How has that changed the way you live your life? How has it changed the way people act with each other? These are just some of the questions we need to ask.
The U.S. dollar has been the world's reserve currency for almost a century, and already there are signs it may be in decline. But that doesn't mean it's not still valuable. On the contrary... As Chris Mayer explains, there are many reasons the U.S. dollar will remain relevant on the world stage for years to come. Read on...
Gun control isn’t a modern idea. The rise of gun control laws and limits on your 2nd Amendment freedom go hand in hand with the increase in the size and scope of government. Politicians want you to think the only people who can keep you safe are government forces. But as one renown libertarian economist and thinker will show you, their misguided laws do nothing but take away your freedoms and leave you less safe.
The government will do whatever it takes to make sure it has enough of your money to fund itself. On the surface you might think that means enduring a grueling audit. But the IRS and the government is more than willing to ignore your privacy in the cold relentless pursuit of the money they think they deserve. As they get bigger and bigger every year, the smaller and smaller your paycheck becomes as they leach off it.
The Congressional Budget Office said the government needed to reach 7 million people by the end of March. They claim to have reached the goal and now the debate about Obamacare is over. But what does this milestone really mean in the ongoing healthcare discussion? And more importantly, how will it affect reforms going forward?
If you’re good at something should you be penalized so others have a chance at success? Should award winning actors and actresses be barred from future Oscar ceremonies to give other men and women the chance to succeed? Success should always be rewarded and encouraged. But what happens when you have a government that wants to even the playing field and take away the spoils of success. Gregory Bresiger finds out...
In an effort to cut costs and keep track of patients' records, governments could institute a medical guideline cookbook. Bureaucrats might think they have the best of intentions in mind, but these new rules would drag down the medical process and destroy whatever quality is left in our current system.
Practical people often pooh-pooh fiction reading as a time wasting dalliance, dominated by a Marxist coloring of the world. However, fiction readers were given a scientific reason recently for spending hours absorbing fanciful figments of someone’s imagination.
Argentina is suffering the ravages of government debasement of the currency -- i.e., inflation, the process by which government pays for its ever-increasing debts and bills by simply printing more paper currency. The expanded money supply results in a lower value of everyone’s money, which is reflected in the rising prices of the things that money buys.
When government expansion is allowed to continue unabated or when it casts a heavy regulatory shadow on America’s entrepreneurial spirit, the freedoms that we’ve come to know, and perhaps take for granted, slowly begin to slip away.
The saga of All Saints could soon be coming to a community near you. Thanks partly to the scandal surrounding the IRS’ targeting of conservative groups, the agency has proposed a new set of rules for a huge number of social-welfare groups that claim tax exemption under Section 501(c)4 of the tax code.
The new reality of Obamacare’s tax credits has left finance reporters to pen articles warning readers to “take care” when considering a tax credit and providing strategies for how best to “protect yourself.” So what do finance reporters know that the White House doesn’t?
Nihilo ex nihilo fit. Out of nothing, nothing comes. First put forward by ancient Greek philosopher Parmenides in the fifth century B.C., Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine later used this axiom to prove that the universe needed a “first mover” to get things going. Even if the whole thing began with some kind of “Big Bang” moment, it still needed a banger to bang it. Who? God, of course.
What positive steps can we take? The energy that is now expended by well intentioned, freedom-seeking individuals on the destructive course of politics can be turned into powerful steps that will have a positive effect on the future. All are moral, right and just. None require aggressing. Consider the following...
The Affordable Care Act creates a new health insurance marketplace (the exchange). But because of the great uncertainty about what buyers will enter the market and who will buy what product, the law creates three vehicles to reduce insurance company risk.
Politicians and bureaucrats are notorious for manufacturing euphemisms -- clever but deceptive substitutes for what they really mean but don’t want to admit. That’s how the phrase “revenue enhancement” entered the vocabulary. Some of our courageous friends in government couldn’t bring themselves to say “tax hike.”
“It is difficult to make predictions, especially about the future,” says a proverb often attributed to Yogi Berra. Imagine the world of freedom, or lack of it. Who could foresee the technologies that make our lives so rewarding and convenient? The same technologies have us all under the government’s giant microscope. Thankfully, the brave have turned the microscope around.
In the months since Edward Snowden revealed the nature and extent of the spying that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been perpetrating upon Americans and foreigners, some of the NSA's most troublesome behavior has not been a part of the public debate.
National Treasury Union President Colleen M. Kelly recently described the 2014 IRS budget allocation as “woefully inadequate.” But the agency has not proven itself to be an efficient steward of taxpayer dollars. Here are ten ways the IRS lost the trust of the American people.
It’s easy to be negative about the U.S. economy these days. Find a glint of silver, and folks come running to point out all of the dark clouds looming about. This, of course, is what we got last week when the monthly jobs report was released from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). Folks pooh-poohed the number of jobs and whining that they’re not enough or that it’s less than a bunch of economists thought that it might be. But you know what? Stuff ’em.
Given how poorly states like California and Illinois have funded the pension funds for their own employees, one would think that this would stop dead in its tracks any plan to have the government assist in managing private sector funds too. The spate of recent activity, however, suggests otherwise.
Facts are easy. You can check facts. What supporters of the Affordable Care Act are doing, on the other hand, transcends factual bungling. It’s far more advanced: a warping of reality so debauched it looks like something out of a tale by H.P. Lovecraft.
The problem for NSA apologist is that when guys like Snowden disclose that the government conducts comprehensive surveillance in ways that would have made 1984’s O’Brien drool, it puts the entire progressive agenda in jeopardy.
The east coast and parts of the southern U.S. were to varying degrees paralyzed by blizzards a few weeks ago. The snow as expected rendered the roads treacherous, and in anticipation of slick streets, shoppers flocked to the grocery stores in advance.The rush into grocery stores, and its aftermath, offers worthwhile lessons in economics.First up, […]
We put in a good-citizen call to the SEC the other day.
“There’s a massive scheme to manipulate stock prices,” we told the friendly agent.
“I have to tell you that your call is being monitored so that we can better serve the public,” he replied.
“Oh, don’t worry about that. The NSA is tapping our call anyway.”
“Are you talking about a specific stock?”
“Oh, no… I’m talking about all of them.”
“You mean a Madoff-style scandal?”
“No… no… This is much, much bigger than the Madoff scandal. We’re talking major manipulation. Intentional. Knowledge aforethought. Pumping up all stock prices. Trillions of dollars.”
“Who is doing this?” the agent asked… a certain tone creeping into his voice. He was starting to suspect he had a lunatic on the line.
“The Fed, of course.”
“Uh… thank you…”
“You gotta go after those bastards.”
“Uh… yes… we’ll look into it.”
“OK, thanks. I just thought you should know.”
Wall Street shook the sleep from its head and rubbed its eyes last week. Investors shrugged off the bad news from Japan and Europe.
As for the bad news from the U.S. itself… it hardly mattered. Yes, the economy was weaker than had been thought — with the worst jobs report in two years. No, there was not much good news coming from corporate earnings, either.
But hey — asset values no longer depend on the performance of the Main Street economy. This is a manipulated market. The Dow rose more than 100 points, reversing a worrying trend.
Since the start of the year, U.S. stocks have been selling off. But last Tuesday, investors found their footings… and recovered their delusions…
Yes! The only thing that matters is that the Fed is on the case. Stocks are being manipulated to the upside. Willfully. Knowingly. Intentionally.
Janet Yellen can talk about tapering quantitative easing (QE). But she can’t do it. The economy needs more support from the Fed. But the Fed doesn’t put more money into ordinary household budgets. You can see that just by looking at jobs, wages, or consumer prices. The U.S. CPI is barely going up at all.
That’s because the Fed’s intervention stays in the financial economy — where the EZ money and credit as a result of ZIRP and QE feeds directly into stock, bond and real estate markets.
Jimmying and Jiving
Look at a stock chart… identify the episodes of QE… and you will see that the Fed’s QE = U.S. stock market gains. Liquidity mainly drives asset prices, not the real economy.
Asset prices do not reflect the genuine “facts on the ground” for businesses or consumers. They are jimmied and jived by the authorities.
Last week, we noted that stocks, bonds and real estate have added $21 trillion to the nation’s balance sheets since 2009. But at the rate the economy is adding real wealth, it will take 70 years to catch up with those asset prices. Stocks, bonds, and real estate are all counting on growth that will never happen. Or at least it won’t happen soon enough to justify such high prices.
What made stocks go up so much last year was that the Fed made a lot of liquidity available — while the federal government used less of it than it had the year before. This left a lot of excess liquidity wandering around looking for a home.
What did it find? Stocks and housing!
Most likely, this will continue. Stick with me now…
1. The feds think they can manage the economy
2. They see recessions and/or falling asset prices as problems to be fixed
3. They think they can prevent these things with more QE
On the evidence… they’re right!
Without Fed support, the economy would probably be in recession. U.S. GDP went up about $350 billion last year. The Fed offset it with $1.2 trillion worth of QE. Even so, the economy only limps along. Without it, the economy slumps. The Fed can’t tolerate a slump. So, it has to continue with QE.
Meanwhile, the federal government is absorbing $400 billion less capital this year than last as a result of lower budget deficits. This leaves a lot of excess stray kittens in need of adoption. Who will take them in?
Stocks! Real estate! Yes, dear reader, we will most likely see more gains in 2014.
This is blatant manipulation of the markets. The Fed is open about it. Even proud of it.
C’mon, SEC, you put the petty, two-bit manipulators in jail. A few million here and there. BFD! How about the big boys? How about a trillion-dollar conspiracy to raise stock prices?
Arrest Janet Yellen! We want to see her do the perp walk.
– Bill Bonner
This article originally appeared here.