Thanks Barack… Typical U.S. Household Worth One Third Less Than Under Bush

Obamanomics In Action: Typical US Household Worth One-Third Less Than Under Bush – Gateway Pundit

Another Obama record…

AMERICANS GETTING POORER – HOUSEHOLD NET WORTH IN DECLINE

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The median household net worth under Obama is one-third what it was during the Bush years.

Under Barack Obama American households are worth two-thirds of what they were worth under George W. Bush.

The New York Times reported:

Economic inequality in the United States has been receiving a lot of attention. But it’s not merely an issue of the rich getting richer. The typical American household has been getting poorer, too.

The inflation-adjusted net worth for the typical household was $87,992 in 2003. Ten years later, it was only $56,335, or a 36 percent decline, according to a study financed by the Russell Sage Foundation. Those are the figures for a household at the median point in the wealth distribution – the level at which there are an equal number of households whose worth is higher and lower. But during the same period, the net worth of wealthy households increased substantially.

The Russell Sage study also examined net worth at the 95th percentile. (For households at that level, 94 percent of the population had less wealth and 4 percent had more.) It found that for this well-do-do slice of the population, household net worthincreased 14 percent over the same 10 years. Other research, by economists like Edward Wolff at New York University, has shown even greater gains in wealth for the richest 1 percent of households.

Hat Tip Banafsheh Zand

It should come as no surprise then that Republicans overwhelmingly represent the middle class districts by almost a two-to-one ratio.

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Thanks Barack… Obamacare Subsidies Will Push Costs Up By More Than 50 Percent

O-Care Subsidies Will Push Costs Up By More Than 50% – Sweetness & Light

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From the Los Angeles Times:

Obamacare subsidies push cost of health law above projections

By Noam N. Levey | June 17, 2014

WASHINGTON – The large subsidies for health insurance that helped fuel the successful drive to sign up some 8 million Americans for coverage under the Affordable Care Act may push the cost of the law considerably above current projections, a new federal report indicates…

You don’t say.

That assistance helped lower premiums for consumers who bought health coverage on the federal marketplaces by 76% on average, according to the new report from the Department of Health and Human Services…

While the generous subsidies helped consumers, they also risk inflating the new health law’s price tag in its first year.

The report suggests that the federal government is on track to spend at least $11 billion on subsidies for consumers who bought health plans on marketplaces run by the federal government… If these state [exchange] consumers received roughly comparable government assistance for their insurance premiums, the total cost of subsidies could top $16.5 billion this year.

That would be far higher than projections this spring from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office that the 2014 subsidies would cost the federal government $10 billion…

Imagine them being so badly mistaken in their projections. How does it happen, time and again?

The Congressional Budget Office estimated in April that the annual cost of subsidies will rise to $23 billion next year and $95 billion in 2024, although the budget office continued to project that all the law’s costs will be offset by additional revenue it raises and by cuts in other federal healthcare spending.

Right. Just like the way Medicare costs have been offset over the years.

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Thanks Barack… 73,000 Marylanders To Lose Current Health Plans Due To Obamacare

About 73,000 Marylanders To Lose Current Health Plans – Capital Gazette

About 73,000 Marylanders will lose their health coverage on or after Jan. 1 due to regulations mandated by the federal Affordable Care Act.

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The Maryland Insurance Administration was notified by nine insurance carriers that they will discontinue some of their health plans starting in the new year, said Joseph A. Sviatko, a spokesman for the agency.

The ACA, passed in 2010, does not require people with health plans purchased before March 23, 2010, to buy new coverage, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Those plans are grandfathered into the new law.

But plans that were changed after March 2010 – including changes to deductibles, co-pay or benefits – must meet new federal requirements.

The ACA mandates all health insurance premiums must cover 10 essential health benefits, including hospitalization, prescription drugs, maternity and newborn care.

Approximately 73,000 nongrandfathered plans in Maryland will be discontinued, Sviatko said.

“Those plans are being replaced with stronger coverage that provides more consumer protection, such as guaranteed coverage, mental health parity, and prescription drug coverage,” Sviatko said in an email.

Health care plans that have remained unchanged since March 23, 2010, can be renewed, he said.

CareFirst BlueCross Blue-Shield, which handles about 70 percent of Maryland’s individual insurance market, said close to 76,000 of its customers could lose their current health plans in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C., by January.

A CareFirst spokesman said about 60,000 of those cancellations would take place in Maryland.

CareFirst has close to 120,000 individual members in the state.

Sviatko did not know how many health care plans would be discontinued in Anne Arundel County. Most people should receive 90 days notice before their health coverage is discontinued, he said.

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Thanks Barack… China, Russia, And Iran Want A Crack At Controlling The Internet

China, Russia, And Iran Want A Crack At Controlling The Internet – Breitbart

Each passing day sees more resistance to the Obama Administration’s announced handover of Internet domain supervision to an as-yet undetermined global agency. There’s still plenty of support for the move as well, but the pendulum seems to be swinging against it this week.

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This morning we heard from a few Republican critics of the Internet handover. National Journal adds Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) to the list:


“If the Obama Administration gives away its oversight of the Internet, it will be gone forever,” wrote Daniel Castro, a senior analyst with the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.

Castro argued that the world “could be faced with a splintered Internet that would stifle innovation, commerce, and the free flow and diversity of ideas that are bedrock tenets of world’s biggest economic engine.”

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, a Tennessee Republican, called the announcement a “hostile step” against free speech.

“Giving up control of ICANN will allow countries like China and Russia that don’t place the same value in freedom of speech to better define how the internet looks and operates,” she said in a statement.

It’s hard to argue with Mr. Castro’s point; there will be no way for the United States to regain oversight of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers once it’s been handed off to some global body. And there are good reasons for Rep. Blackburn to worry about what the composition of that global body might be, as National Journal notes “China, Russia, Iran, and dozens of other countries are already pushing for more control over the Internet through the International Telecommunications Union, a United Nations agency.”

The Administration has promised that it won’t accept foreign governments controlling ICANN, and has specifically promised the International Telecommunications Union won’t be involved. And we all know how calmly and logically these decisions tend to be made, once they’re handed off to the “international community.” Just look at how swimmingly the United Nations’ effort to halt Russian annexation of Crimea is going!

It’s somewhat annoying to hear American supporters of the ICANN handover doing their level best to validate the narrative that their own country can no longer be trusted with oversight of the Internet, while actual users point out that U.S. supervision has been working out quite well, as in these quotes from a Politico story:

If the agency hadn’t relinquished its oversight, the ITU could continue to argue that ICANN functioned as a pawn for the U.S. government, said former Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Va.), who oversaw the Energy and Commerce subcommittee with jurisdiction over ICANN. “This will reduce the level of global controversy.”

The uncertain path forward still has some in the business community concerned.

“I don’t see how the future ends up being better than the last decade of responsible stewardship by the U.S.,” said Steve DelBianco, executive director of the trade association NetChoice, which counts Yahoo and Facebook as members. “Once the contract leverage is gone, what’s to prevent ICANN from being more significantly influenced by [specific] governments… The devil is in the details.”

So let’s hear those iron-clad, foolproof plans to keep authoritarian regimes from getting their hands on ICANN once America casts it adrift into the uncertain waters of the international community.

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Thanks Barack… U.S. Electricity Production Declines As Price Index Soars To New Record

Electricity Price Index Soars To New Record At Start Of 2014; U.S. Electricity Production Declining – CNS

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The electricity price index soared to a new high in January 2014 with the largest month-to-month increase in almost four years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Meanwhile, data from the Energy Information Administration, a division of the U.S. Department of Energy, indicates that electricity production in the United States has declined since 2007, when it hit its all-time peak.

The U.S. is producing less electricity than it did seven years ago for a population that has added more than 14 million people.

“The electricity index rose 1.8 percent, its largest increase since March 2010,” said BLS in its summary of the Consumer Price Index released Thursday.

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In December, the seasonally adjusted electricity index was 203.740. In January, it climbed to a new high of 207.362.

Back in January 2013, the electricity price index stood at 198.679. It thus climbed about 4.4 percent over the course of a year.

Last month, the average price for a kilowatthour (KWH) of electricity in a U.S. city also hit an all-time January high of 13.4 cents, according to BLS. That marks the first time the average price for a KWH has ever exceeded 13 cents in the month of January, when the price of electricity is normally lower than in the summer months.

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A year ago, in January 2013, a KWH cost 12.9 cents. The increase in the price of a KWH from January 2013 to January 2014 was about 3.9 percent.

During the year, the price of a KWH of electricity usually rises in the spring, peaks in summer, declines in fall, and is at its lowest point in winter. In 2013, the average price of a KWH in each of the 12 months of the year set a record for that particular month. January 2014’s price of 13.4 cents per KWH set a new record for January.

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Historically, in the United States, rising electricity prices have not been inevitable. In the first decades after World War II, the U.S. rapidly increased it electricity production, including on a per capita basis. Since 2007, the U.S. has decreased its electricity production, including on a per capita basis.

In the 1950s and 1960s, when U.S. electricity generation was increasing at a rapid pace, the seasonally adjusted U.S. electricity price index remained relatively stable. In January 1959, the electricity index stood at 29.2, according to BLS. A decade later, in January 1969, it was 30.2—an increase of 3.4 percent over a 10-year span.

That 3.4-percent increase in the index from January 1959 to January 1969 was less than the 4.4 percent the index increased from January 2013 to January 2014.

Over the last seven years, according to the EIA, the U.S. has actually decreased its total net electricity generation, although not in an unbroken downward line from year to year (generation did increase from 2009 to 2010 before going down again in 2011 and 2012).

The EIA has published historical data going back to 1949 on the nation’s annual total net electricity generation, which EIA measures in million kilowatthours.

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In 1949, according to EIA, the U.S. produced 296,124.289 million KWH of electricity. By 1959, it produced 713,378.831 – an increase of 417,254.542 million KWH or about 141 percent.

In 1969, the U.S. produced 1,445,458.056 million KWH – an increase of 732,079.225 or about 103 percent from 1959.

In 1979, the U.S. produced 2,250,665.025 million KWH – an increase of 805,206.969 or about 55.7 percent from 1969.

In 1989, the U.S. produced 2,967,146.087 million KWH – an increase of 716,481.062 or about 31.8 percent from 1979.

In 1999, the U.S. produced 3,694,809.810 million KWH – an increase of 727,663.723 or about 24.5 percent from 1989.

In 2009, the U.S. produced 3,950,330.927 million KWH – an increase of 255,521.117 or about 6.9 percent.

In 2007, according to EIA, the U.S. generated a net total of 4,156,744.724 million KWH of electricity, which, so far, is the historical peak. In 2012, the last year for which full data is available, the U.S. generated a net total of 4,047,765.26 million KWH. That represents a drop of 108,979.464 million KWH – or about 2.6 percent – in the nation’s electricity production since 2007.

CNSNews.com divided the million KWH of electricity generated each year in the United States, according to EIA, by the number of people in the U.S. population as of July of that year (as estimated by the Census Bureau) to derive a number for per capita electricity production (see chart).

As with overall electricity production, per capita production exhibited decelerating growth over the decades, peaked in 2007, and has since declined.

From 1950 to 1959, per capita total electricity generation (in million KWH) grew by 83.11 percent; from 1960 to 1969, it grew by 69.76 percent; from 1970 to 1979, it grew by 33.51 percent; from 1980 to 1989, it grew by 19.25 percent; from 1990 to 1999, it grew by 11.25 percent.

From 2000 to 2009, per capita total net electricity generation in the United States declined by 4.45 percent.

In 2007, when U.S. electricity generation peaked at 4,156,744.724 million KWH, per capita production also peaked at 0.013799 million KWH for each of the 301,231,207 people in the country as of July of that year.

In 2012, the U.S. generated 4,047,765.26 million KWH for a population of 313,914,040—for a per capita production of 0.012895. That means per capita electricity production in the U.S. declined by about 6.6 percent in five years.

The downward trend in U.S. electricity production continued into 2013. The EIA’s latest Monthly Energy Review, which includes data through October 2013, indicates that in the first ten months of 2013, the U.S. generated a total of 3,392,101 million KWH of electricity, down from the 3,407,155 million KWH produced in the first 10 months of 2012.

The Monthly Energy Review also indicates that a large part of the decline in U.S. electricity generation has come from a decrease in the electricity produced by coal – which has not been replaced by a commensurate increase in the electricity produced by natural gas or the “renewable” sources of wind and solar.

In 2007, the year U.S. electricity generation peaked at 4,156,745 million KWH, coal accounted for 2,016,456 million KWH of that production – or 48.5 percent of it. Natural gas, then the nation’s second largest generator of electricity, accounted for 896,590 million KWH of total production – or about 21.6 percent.

In 2007, wind generated 34,450 million KWH – or about 0.8 percent of the nation’s supply that year. Solar generated 612 million KWH – or about 0.0147 percent of the national supply.

By 2012, when U.S. electricity generation had dropped to 4,047,765 million KWH, coal generated only 1,514,043 million KWH – or 37.4 percent of the national supply.

Between 2007 and 2012, the nation’s annual coal-fired electricity generation declined by about 25 percent, or 502,413 million KWH. The combined increases in natural gas, wind and solar did not make up for this decline. In 2012, natural gas produced 1,225,894 million KWH, up 329,304 million KWH from 2007; wind produced 140,822, up 106,372 million KWH from 2007; and solar produced 4,327 million KWH, up 3,715 million KWH from 2007.

The combined 439,391 million KWH increase in electricity generation from natural gas, wind and solar did not cover the 502,413 million KWH decline in the electricity generated by coal.

Coal was not the only source that produced less electricity in 2012 than in 2007, according to the EIA data.

Electricity from nuclear power plants dropped from 806,425 million KWH in 2007 to 769,331 in 2012 – a decline of 37,094 million KWH or 4.6 percent.

Electricity generated from petroleum sources dropped from 65,739 million KWH in 2007 to 23,190 million KWH in 2012—a decline of 42,549 million KWH or about 64.7 percent.

Conventional hydroelectric means of generating electricity hit their peak in 1997, a decade before overall electricity generation peaked in the United States. In that year, the U.S. produced 385,946 million KWH of electricity through conventional hydroelectric power. By 2012, that had dropped to 276,240 million KWH, a decline of 109,706 million KWH or 28.4 percent.
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Thanks Barack… Hidden Obamacare Provision Allows Government To Loot Your Estate After You Die

Revealed: Hidden Obamacare Provision Allows Government To Loot Your Estate After You Die – Gateway Pundit

In March 2010 Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters; “We need to pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it.”

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Now we know what’s in it-

A hidden clause in Obamacare allows the government to loot your estate after you die.

The Seattle Times reported

As thousands of state residents enroll in Washington’s expanded Medicaid program, many will be surprised at fine print: After you’re dead, your estate can be billed for ordinary health-care expenses. State officials are scrambling to change the rule.

It wasn’t the moonlight, holiday-season euphoria or family pressure that made Sofia Prins and Gary Balhorn, both 62, suddenly decide to get married.

It was the fine print.

As fine print is wont to do, it had buried itself in a long form – Balhorn’s application for free health insurance through the expanded state Medicaid program. As the paperwork lay on the dining-room table in Port Townsend, Prins began reading.

She was shocked: If you’re 55 or over, Medicaid can come back after you’re dead and bill your estate for ordinary health-care expenses.

The way Prins saw it, that meant health insurance via Medicaid is hardly “free” for Washington residents 55 or older. It’s a loan, one whose payback requirements aren’t well advertised. And it penalizes people who, despite having a low income, have managed to keep a home or some savings they hope to pass to heirs, Prins said.

With an estimated 223,000 adults seeking health insurance headed toward Washington’s expanded Medicaid program over the next three years, the state’s estate-recovery rules, which allow collection of nearly all medical expenses, have come under fire.

Medicaid, in keeping with federal policy, has long tapped into estates. But because most low-income adults without disabilities could not qualify for typical medical coverage through Medicaid, recovery primarily involved expenses for nursing homes and other long-term care.

The federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) changed that. Now many more low-income residents will qualify for Medicaid, called Apple Health in Washington state.

Put simply:

Affordable Care Act of 2010. Estate recovery will be forced on millions of people who might have otherwise gone without insurance. Why? Because the plan is that millions more Americans have health insurance. That would be accomplished by expanding Medicaid and implementing premium assistance (subsidies). When a person is found to be eligible for Medicaid, they will be automatically enrolled into their state’s Medicaid program. Those forced into Medicaid will, due to the federal law, also be forced into estate recovery. Their estates will be partly or fully taken over by the federal or state government when they die.

You can thank Democrats for this.

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Thanks Barack… Disability Trust Fund Runs Record 5 Straight Years Of Deficits

Under Obama: Disability Trust Fund Runs Record 5 Straight Yrs Of Deficits – CNS

In the fourteen fiscal years that preceded President Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009, the tax receipts coming into the federal government’s Disability Insurance Trust Fund exceeded the benefits paid out, and the trust fund ran a surplus.

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In each of the five fiscal years Obama has served as president, the trust fund has run a deficit as the number of people receiving disability benefits has surged. The Disability Insurance Trust Fund has never before run five straight years of deficits.

In fiscal 2013, which ended on Sept. 30, the Disability Insurance Trust Fund ran a record deficit of $31.494 billion, according to newly released data from the Social Security Administration. That followed deficits of $8.462 billion in fiscal 2009, $20,831 billion in fiscal 2010, $25.264 billion in fiscal 2011, and $29.701 billion in fiscal 2012.

From fiscal 1995 through fiscal 2008, the Disability Insurance Trust Fund ran surpluses, as receipts from the disability insurance taxes paid by people who were working exceeded the value of the benefits paid to those claiming disability.

Congress created the federal disability insurance program by adding an amendment to the Social Security Act in 1956. The government paid the first disability benefits in fiscal 1957.

That year, the Social Security and disability programs were funded by payroll taxes that equaled a combined 5.625 percent of a person’s earnings. If someone was employed by someone else, this included a 2.0 percent tax for Social Security that was withheld from a person’s paycheck, an 0.250 percent tax for disability that was also withheld from the paycheck, a 3.0 percent tax for Social Security that was paid by the employer, and an 0.375 percent tax for disability that was paid by the employer.

A self-employed person paid the full 5.625 percent directly from his or her earnings.

Over the years, the payroll taxes for Social Security and disability have more than doubled to 12.4 percent. Self-employed individuals pay the entire 12.4 percent directly. People employed by someone else see 5.3 percent withheld from their paycheck for Social Security and 0.9 percent withheld for disability. Employers pay the other 6.2 percent on the worker’s behalf.

In 1957, the Disability Insurance Trust Fund took in $709 million and paid out only $59 million in benefits – or 8.3 percent of total revenues. A surplus of approximately $649 million was deposited in to the Trust Fund.

In reality, that means the government took that “surplus” and used it to pay for other government expenses, giving the Trust Fund an IOU to pay the money back later.

In the 57 fiscal years that the federal disability program has operated, it has run deficits in only 11 years – with five of those years coming under Obama. Prior to the last five fiscal years, the longest run of deficits in the Disability Insurance Trust Fund was the four-year span from fiscal 1962 trough fiscal 1965, when John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson were president.

The trust fund also ran three straight years of deficits from fiscal 1975 through fiscal 1977, when Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter were president.

When President Obama took office in January 2009 – which was the fourth month of fiscal 2009–there were 7,442,377 workers on disability, according to the Social Security Administration. As of October 2013, there was a record 8,936,932. That means the number of people on disability has increased by 1,494,555 while Obama has been in office – a jump of 20 percent.

In addition to the 8,936,932 workers collecting disability in October, there were also 157,676 spouses of disabled workers who collected additional benefits, and 1,871,127 children of disabled workers who collected benefits.

All told, 10,965,735 people collected federal disability benefits in October.

At the end of fiscal 2008, there was a net balance of $216.239 billion in the Disability Insurance Trust Fund – meaning the Treasury owed $216.239 billion in IOUs to the trust fund for surplus disability insurance tax receipts it had taken in previous years and used for other government expenses.

At the end of fiscal 2013, the net balance in the Disability Insurance Trust Fund had dropped to $100.486 – a decline of $115.753 billion.

That $115.753 billion, the cumulative five year deficit of the disability insurance program, equals the amount of money the Treasury had to borrow from other sources to pay disability benefits during that time.

From the last day of January 2009 through the last day of September 2013, the total debt of the federal government climbed from $10,632,005,246,736.97 to $16,738,183,526,697.32—an increase of $6,106,178,279,960.35.

That equaled approximately $53,091 in additional debt for each of the 115,013,000 households that the Census Bureau now estimates there are in the United States.

Since the last day of September, the federal government’s total debt has continued to increase, hitting $17,200,725,370,597.56 as of Tuesday—or approximately $149,555 per household.

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