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NEWS and OPINIONS by BILL STANLEY

Czar Obama Claimed Obama Care Would Cut The Average Family's Premium By About $2,500 Per Year

(6 July 2014) 41 New York health insurance companies have requested premium increases averaging 13% for 2015. MetroPlus, the 3rd largest market share on the state's exchange and 44% of the New York City market, is requesting an average 18.5% increase. MVP, which holds 8% on the state's exchange, asked for an average 19% increase. (Source: 2 July 2014 Capital New York)

Best / Worst Presidents

(3 July 2014) "since World War II ... consider the worst president" ... 33% Obama, 28% Bush, 13% Nixon, 8% Carter

"since World War II ... consider the best president" ... 35% Reagan, 18% Clinton, 15% Kennedy

"Obama administration has been competent in running the government" ... 54% No

"if Mitt Romney had become President ... nation would be better off than it is today or worse off" ... 45% Better ... 38% Worse (Source: 2 July 2014 Quinnipiac Univ. Poll)

GM Recalled 25.68 Million Vehicles In Less Than 6 Months

(2 July 2014) Starting 13 Jan. 2014, Government Motors (GM) has recalled 25.68 million vehicles in the U.S. for safety-related repairs, equal to more than 9 times their 2013 U.S. sales. (Source: 30 June 2014 USA TODAY)

Don't Let The World Bank Control Your Pension Plan

(30 June 2014) World Bank Pres. Jim Yong said that pension funds should invest in "green assets" instead of fossil fuel companies. Starting 1 Jan. 2002, the STOXX Global 1800 Oil & Gas Index has increased 81.5%, while the RENIXX Renewable Energy Industrial Index has dropped 64.6 %.

Economics 101: U.S. Company Moves To Ireland

(29 June 2014) Medtronic, the world’s largest medical technology company, has announced plans to move its corporate headquarters from Minneapolis to Dublin, Ireland. With the U.S. corporate tax rate at 35%, Medtronic would rather move to where the tax rate is only 12.5%. Medtronic will have more money to invest and grow their company. (Source: 23 June 2014 Townhall)

D.C.'s Goal To Increase Commuting Cost, Pollution And Taxpayer Subsidies

(24 June 2014) A District of Columbia goal is to reduce auto commuting from 54% of all workers in the district to no more than 25% by shifting to urban transit. In 2012, the average U.S. car and light truck emitted 268 grams of carbon dioxide per passenger-mile, compared to 285 grams for Washington's transit system. Americans spend about a trillion dollars a year buying, maintaining, operating and insuring cars, and subsidizing highways. They travel about 4 trillion passenger-miles per year ... 25 cents per passenger-mile ... 24 cents paid by users and 1 cent by subsidies. In 2012, Washington's urban-area transit system operated 2.5 billion passenger- miles at a cost of $3 billion ... $1.20 per passenger-mile ... 34 cents paid by users and 86 cents by taxpayers. (Source: 6 June 2014 Cato Institute)

The Other 3 Largest Users Of Coal Are All Increasing The Amount They Burn

(24 June 2014) From 2000 to 2011, the annual amount of coal burned in China increased from 1.5 to 3.8 billion tons. During the same period, the amount burned in the U.S. decreased from approximately 1.1 to 1.0 billion tons. China’s increase was 23 times the U.S.’s decrease. At the same time, the increase in cost of U.S. electricity hurt the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing … we bought more foreign goods and lost jobs. Is our pain worth our very small impact on world pollution? (Source: Apr. 2014, National Geographic)

Medicaid Will Require Huge Increase in Taxes Or Result In Huge Increase In National Debt

(24 June 2014) Federal and state Medicaid spending: $72 billion in 1990, $206 billion in 2000 and $401 billion in 2010. Expansion due to Obama Care will inflate Medicaid to $795 billion in 2021. (Sources: George Mason Univ. Mercatus Center, Congressional Budget Office (CBO), 17 June 2014 National Center for Policy Analysis)

Eliminate LBJ's "Great Society" Job Corps

(23 June 2014) Part of Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society" was the Job Corps, a training and placement program to teach trade skills to low-income, troubled youth at least 16 years old. The program is the Labor Dept.'s most expensive, costing $1.7 billion in 2014 for 37,000 participants ... $45,946 each. Students live at the centers courtesy of taxpayers. A 9-year study that began in 1995 quantified the effectiveness of the program. Researchers studied 15,000 who applied for the program and compared the results of the students who attended with those who did not. Wage benefits of Job Corps students disappeared after 4 years. (Sources: 19 May 2014 Washington Post, 22 May National Center for Policy Analysis)

Student Proficiency Does Not Correlate With School Spending

(23 June 2014) Washington, D.C. government schools spent $29,349 per pupil in the 2010-11 school year ... highest among 21 large cities. In 2013, only 17% of 8th graders were "proficient" or "advanced" in reading and 19% in math ... worse in both subjects than all states. The other D.C. students were "basic". (Sources: National Center for Education Statistics, 14 May 2014 Townhall)

School Lunch Czar Obama Loses A Battle

(22 June 2014) The Dept. of Agriculture announced a 2-year delay in a regulation that forced schools to provide food that is rich in whole grains. Lasagna and elbow pastas were especially difficult to cook in large quantities. With Czar Obama's wife as a cheerleader, new regulations have been phased in over the last 2 school years. The School Nutrition Association has pushed for delays in many school nutrition changes, citing declining revenue and increased costs. In the 2012-13 school year, almost half of schools experienced lower revenues for their school meal programs and 90% saw food costs increase. (Source: 19 May 2014 Associated Press, 20 May Daily Caller)

Taxpayers On Increasingly More Expensive Obama Care Ride

(22 June 2014) The average Obama Care Federal Exchange Bronze Plan monthly premium is $289 per month, with $221 subsidized by taxpayers. The Silver plan is $345, with $264 subsidized by taxpayers. 69% of those who qualified for a tax credit pay a monthly premium of less than $100. Nearly 9 in 10 who bought health coverage on the Obama Care Federal Exchange received taxpayer subsidies. This spring, the 2014 subsidies were estimated to cost the taxpayers $10 billion. Now, the estimate is $16.5 billion. Obama Care insurance provisions will cost $1.4 trillion from 2015 to 2024. (Sources: Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Joint Committee on Taxation, Dept. of Health and Human Services, 17 June 2014 LA Times, 18 June Fiscal Times)

Arizona Health Insurance Premiums Going Up Next Year

(21 June 2014) Arizona is the latest state whose insurers have proposed their premium rates for next year. For major insurers, the rate increases range from a 14.4% hike from Cigna to a whopping 25.5% hike from Humana. Czar Obama claimed his health care plan would cut the average family's premium by about $2,500 per year. (Source: 4 June 2014 Fiscal Times)

$24,000 Replacement Battery System For Least-Expensive Tesla Car

(21 June 2014) Most electric cars have a few large batteries. Tesla's have thousands of laptop-computer-size batteries. The base prices of Tesla Model S cars, including destination charges, are $71,070 with a 60 kWh battery system and $81,070 with an 85 kWh battery system. This implies the cost of batteries is $400 per kWh. Therefore, a replacement 60 kWh battery system would be $24,000. The base price of a Honda Accord Sedan LX with an automatic transmission, including destination charge, is $23,545. (Sources: Tesla, Honda)

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