Joe Biden tells Americans that he's helping them by building "from the bottom up and the middle out." …
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Image of the Day: Americans' Shrinking Earnings Under Joe Biden

Joe Biden tells Americans that he's helping them by building "from the bottom up and the middle out."  But the numbers don't lie, and the ugly reality is that he's only dragging us all toward the bottom.  Throughout his presidency, wage gains (green) have been consistently exceeded by inflation (blue), meaning loss in real earnings (red):

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="455"] Bidenomics Means Lost Earnings[/caption]…[more]

May 19, 2024 • 11:05 PM

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CBO Report: ObamaCare Kills Jobs, Doesn’t Help the Uninsured Print
By Troy Senik
Thursday, February 06 2014
Shrinking the labor pool this way means that a growing number of government beneficiaries will be relying on a shrinking supply of taxpayers to foot their bills.

Former New York Governor Mario Cuomo famously said “You campaign in poetry; you govern in prose.” He can be forgiven the sentiment, because he uttered it in 1985, before the world knew of Barack Obama.

What Cuomo meant is that candidates out on the stump are inevitably going to sell sweeping, romantic notions of what their time in office will look like. Once they assume the responsibilities of their station, however, they have to take reality as they find it — a process that is often complex, messy and unsatisfying.

No one seems to have shared this insight with our current president, who maintains a remarkable tendency to believe that good intentions are enough to ensure success — even when it comes to something as complex as remaking a health care sector that makes up 1/6 of the American economy.

If you think back to 2009, when Obama was crisscrossing the country proselytizing on behalf of his healthcare reform law, you’ll remember that the heart of the argument always came back to one thing: taking care of the uninsured and guaranteeing that Americans wouldn’t go without vital health coverage or be forced into bankruptcy via medical expenses.

This posture, it should be noted, was always something of a fig leaf. If Obama’s real goal was taking care of the relatively small subset of the population who couldn’t get insurance, he could have done so with a targeted program considerably narrower than ObamaCare, which functionally has transformed the American healthcare system into a public utility. In truth, the president always wanted far more sweeping change.

Regardless of his intentions, however, the fact remains that the focus on those without insurance laid down a marker.  When Obama took his case to the American people, he repeatedly underscored its urgency by noting that there were more than 30 million Americans who couldn’t get coverage. For all of its failings, at least ObamaCare takes care of that problem, right?

Wrong.  Earlier this week, the Congressional Budget Office — an institution whose figures the White House has too consistently relied on to attempt to discredit now — issued a new report that declared, “About 31 million non-elderly residents of the United States are likely to be without health insurance in 2024, roughly one out of every nine such residents.” Whoops.

Think about the enormous implications of that projection: Barack Obama will have turned the entire American health care industry on its head, spent a couple trillion dollars of taxpayer money, thrown millions of Americans off  their healthcare — and not moved the needle one bit. In terms of money, effort and social dislocation, this may go down as the largest failed experiment in social engineering ever to take place in a free nation.

Perhaps even worse than the insurance projections were the CBO’s description of what ObamaCare will do to the nation’s employment picture. By 2017, the report estimated, the program will have cost the nation 2 million jobs. The number will reach 2.5 million by 2024.

Desperate for an alibi, the White House — in what can only be described as full Baghdad Bob mode — claimed that this was actually a good thing for American workers. Their explanation: the CBO wasn’t projecting that employers would eliminate positions, but rather that workers would opt out of the labor market. Thus, this was about workers exercising individual choice. The White House’s allies on the New York Times editorial page were even audacious enough to declare that the reduction in jobs was “a liberating result of the law.”

Here’s the problem with that rationale: The projected dropouts from the labor force wouldn’t be leaving the job market because of new-found autonomy; they’d be leaving because they had become dependent on the taxpayers.

The reason the CBO anticipates the shift is because of ObamaCare’s misbegotten subsidy regime. Under the terms of the program, subsidies for low-income Americans decline as their incomes increase, a typical cost-saving measure in social programs. The decrease in those benefits, however, can be larger than the corresponding increase in wages — meaning that, under ObamaCare, many Americans could actually find themselves functionally poorer by getting a job. Why bother going to work in that situation? 

This prospect is bad enough in and of itself, but playing it out to its logical conclusion only amplifies the potential destruction. Shrinking the labor pool this way means that a growing number of government beneficiaries will be relying on a shrinking supply of taxpayers to foot their bills. That will inevitably lead to calls for higher taxes, which will only further weaken the economy and further shrink the tax base. It’s a vicious cycle that can only be broken one way — by ripping ObamaCare out by the roots.

This is what happens when we elect a president who believes he can govern in poetry.  We get stuck, in the end, with horrifying prose.

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"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it."…[more]
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