I don't know what they want from me
It's like the more money we come across
The more problems we see...
-The Notorious B.I.G.
I've argued for many years and written extensively about efforts that have made poverty so comfortable that it's hard to make the transition of taking care of one's own self. Government benefits are simply too good, and going into the workforce means an actual reduction in income; so how many people would accept that, along with having more responsibility, more bosses, and more headaches? It's the exact opposite about what Biggie Smalls was rapping when he said, "Mo Money Mo Problems."
Right now, people often take a huge haircut that go from receiving government checks to an entry-level job. By the way, those higher minimum-wage proposals still wouldn't be enough to entice most that can do simple math, and have given up hope of achieving self-improvement, or the pride that comes with trying to make it in this world. Come on, what are we thinking? Someone's going to get off the sofa for "Less money Mo Problems"?
Early yesterday a bombshell was dropped on us, just as the stock market was opening for business. It turns out that the Affordable Healthcare law is becoming less affordable each day. The Congressional Budget Office sharpened its pencil; we all should have felt a prick. To say it's going to sting a little bit would be an understatement. Initially, CBO came up with lost manpower to equal the loss of 800,000 jobs. The latest number is 2.5 million!
This number isn't about all those part-time workers that have bubbled up since the law was passed. The number comes from the fact that people will lose money by becoming full-time workers - ouch!!!
Part-Time (without benefits)
Full-Time (with benefits)
= Less Money
If you currently earn less than 400% above poverty, then in many cases, it would simply be financially better to not work or work part-time, because of all the benefits and tax breaks from the federal government. In this debate about fairness, one must wonder just how fair and smart is it to entice, and virtually hold people hostage by not allowing them to give it their all, and attempt to grab a piece of the American Dream? I think it's despicable, and it's expensive too. The millions of people that will choose not to work over the next ten years will cost the US economy more than $300 billion.
Not cheap and not the cure; we were promised. Net cost from the Affordable Care Act, not including things like the IRS budget and other factors will hit the deficit hard, and yet even by 2021; there will be 31,000,000 uninsured, nonelderly folks in this country. I'm still trying to wrap my arms around why this was considered a panacea, and why there was so much resistance toward improving it, or simply to start from scratch.
Yesterday's rebound wasn't anything to write home about, not impressive at all, but beggars cannot be choosy. We actually start to get into the thick of today as we build up anticipation for the jobs number on Friday. Earnings continue to largely impress this week, but guidance has a more cautious feel than in past quarters. There are so many balls in the air, so many unanswered questions, and more angst with which we have dealt in a couple of years.
ADP Employment Changes
According to ADP, non-farm private sector jobs increased during the month of January by 175,000 - which were worse than economists' average forecast calling for a 178,000 increase.