Here's some potentially VERY good economic news that was lost amid the weekend news flurry.  Those…
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Some Potentially VERY Good Economic News

Here's some potentially VERY good economic news that was lost amid the weekend news flurry.  Those with "skin in the game," and who likely possess the best perspective, are betting heavily on an upturn, as highlighted by Friday's Wall Street Journal:

Corporate insiders are buying stock in their own companies at a pact not seen in years, a sign they are betting on a rebound after a coronavirus-induced rout.  More than 2,800 executives and directors have purchased nearly $1.19 billion in company stock since the beginning of March.  That's the third-highest level on both an individual and dollar basis since 1988, according to the Washington Service, which provides data analytics about trading activity by insiders."

Here's why that's important:

Because insiders typically know the…[more]

March 30, 2020 • 11:02 am

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ObamaCare Is Great for Insurance Companies, Irrelevant for Better Health Print
By Ashton Ellis
Thursday, April 16 2015
The chief hurdle facing the newly insured under ObamaCare isn’t access, it’s the cost.

Under ObamaCare, the percentage of Americans without health insurance has dropped, but one stubborn fact remains – the newly covered aren’t any healthier.

A new report from Gallup’s Healthways Well-Being Index shows that among U.S. adults 18 and older the uninsured rate is now 11.9 percent, a five-point decline from the beginning of ObamaCare’s first enrollment period in late 2013.

The steady decline in the national uninsured rate is one of the top talking points for the Obama administration and its supporters, since it allows them to claim success for their government-dominated version of health reform.

“The Affordable Care Act was designed to slash the percentage of Americans who lack health insurance, and it’s working,” gushes a Huffington Post report on the Gallup figures.

Populations with the lowest rates of health insurance coverage have seen the steepest rise, most notably Hispanics and poor Americans. Pro-ObamaCare groups like Enroll America have targeted these cohorts with an aggressive outreach campaign designed to gin up interest and participation in ObamaCare exchanges. As the Gallup figures indicate, millions of previously uninsured people now have health insurance.

But simply having health insurance isn’t the same as being healthier. The real question to ask is, What good is gaining coverage under ObamaCare doing for the people who otherwise couldn’t afford medical care?  

“Although those changes have been positive, glaring health disparities still exist,” says an analysis at U.S. News & World Report. “For example, the average African-American male lives five years less than the average white American male. And while the increase in insurance for lower-income Americans means that chronic diseases such as diabetes can be caught by doctors easily, access is a continuing issue for some who have gained health insurance under the law.”

The chief hurdle facing the newly insured under ObamaCare isn’t access, it’s the cost. The price of any ObamaCare-compliant health insurance plan must cover a range of preventive care and treatment options most people will not need, but must pay for. The most egregious example is mandating pregnancy and maternity-related services even in plans sold exclusively to men.

Because of the artificially high cost of ObamaCare insurance, many people choose to buy a health care plan with lower monthly premiums. But there’s a catch. Low premiums come with high deductibles, i.e. the amount a policy holder must pay before insurance kicks in. Deductibles for the lowest cost plans frequently hit $5,000 or $6,000, making access to the benefits of health insurance – the actual medical care itself – virtually unaffordable. So while ObamaCare’s supporters can claim credit for increasing the number of people with health insurance, the newly insured aren’t getting any healthier as a result.

Remember, according to its supporters the primary goal of ObamaCare is to “slash the percentage of Americans who lack health insurance.” As it turns out, that’s a much easier goal to reach than giving citizens the tools they need to become healthier people. All it takes to increase the insured population is a convoluted scheme of mandates, waivers and subsidies so confusing even the IRS mailed out 800,000 error-laden tax reporting documents. 

The purpose of genuine health reform shouldn’t focus on a financial product like insurance nearly as much as on improving health outcomes for actual people. What matters is that people have access to affordable health care, not whether a faction of policy wonks can declare victory for subsidizing a product few can use.

As the campaign for president heats up, the Republican field should use this failure of ObamaCare to highlight the need for health care reform that moves beyond misleading statistics. The next president should be someone who knows how to count what matters. 

Question of the Week   
Which one of the following pandemics caused the largest number of deaths in the 20th Century alone?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"The city of San Francisco is forbidding shoppers from carrying reusable bags into grocery stores out of fear that they could spread the coronavirus.As part of its shelter-in-place ordinance, the California city barred stores from 'permitting customers to bring their own bags, mugs, or other reusable items from home.' The city noted that transferring the bags back and forth led to unnecessary contact…[more]
 
 
—Madison Dibble, Washington Examiner
— Madison Dibble, Washington Examiner
 
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