Big government central-planning: Health Care – teetering and out of control.

Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog (excerpts):

At this point, our health care system is a complete and total disaster. Health care costs continue to go up rapidly, the level of care that we are receiving continues to go down, and every move that our politicians make just seems to make all of our health care problems even worse. In America today, a single trip to the emergency room can easily cost you $100,000, and if you happen to get cancer you could end up with medical bills in excess of a million dollars. Even if you do have health insurance, there are usually limits on your coverage, and the truth is that just a single major illness is often enough to push most American families into bankruptcy.”

“At the same time, hospital administrators, pharmaceutical corporations and health insurance company executives are absolutely swimming in huge mountains of cash. Unfortunately, this gigantic money making scam has become so large that it threatens to collapse both the U.S. health care system and the entire U.S. economy.”

The following are 50 signs that the U.S. health care system is a massive money making scam that is about to collapse…

#1 Medical bills have become so ridiculously large that virtually nobody can afford them. Just check out the following short excerpt from a recent Time Magazine article. One man in California that had been diagnosed with cancer ran up nearly a million dollars in hospital bills before he died…

By the time Steven D. died at his home in Northern California the following November, he had lived for an additional 11 months. And Alice had collected bills totaling $902,452. The family’s first bill — for $348,000 — which arrived when Steven got home from the Seton Medical Center in Daly City, Calif., was full of all the usual chargemaster profit grabs: $18 each for 88 diabetes-test strips that Amazon sells in boxes of 50 for $27.85; $24 each for 19 niacin pills that are sold in drugstores for about a nickel apiece. There were also four boxes of sterile gauze pads for $77 each. None of that was considered part of what was provided in return for Seton’s facility charge for the intensive-care unit for two days at $13,225 a day, 12 days in the critical unit at $7,315 a day and one day in a standard room (all of which totaled $120,116 over 15 days). There was also $20,886 for CT scans and $24,251 for lab work.

#2 This year the American people will spend approximately 2.8 trillion dollars on health care, and it is being projected that Americans will spend 4.5 trillion dollars on health care in 2019.

#3 The United States spends more on health care than Japan, Germany, France, China, the U.K., Italy, Canada, Brazil, Spain and Australia combined.

#4 If the U.S. health care system was a country, it would be the 6th largest economy on the entire planet.

#5 Back in 1960, an average of $147 was spent per person on health care in the United States. By 2009, that number had skyrocketed to $8,086.

#6 Why does it cost so much to stay in a hospital today? It just does not make sense. Just check out these numbers

In 1942, Christ Hospital, NJ charged $7 per day for a maternity room. Today it’s $1,360.

#7 Approximately 60 percent of all personal bankruptcies in the United States are related to medical bills.

#8 One study discovered that approximately 41 percent of all working age Americans either have medical bill problems or are currently paying off medical debt.

#9 The U.S. health care industry has spent more than 5 billion dollars on lobbying our politicians in Washington D.C. since 1998.

#10 According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, the U.S. is currently experiencing a shortage of at least 13,000 doctors. Unfortunately, that shortage is expected to grow to 130,000 doctors over the next 10 years.

#11 The state of Florida is already dealing with a very serious shortage of doctors

Brace yourself for longer lines at the doctor’s office.

Whether you’re employed and insured, elderly and on Medicare, or poor and covered by Medicaid, the Florida Medical Association says there’s a growing shortage of doctors — especially specialists — available to provide you with medical care.

And if the Florida Legislature goes along with Gov. Rick Scott’s recommendation to offer Medicaid coverage to an additional 1 million Floridians — part of the Affordable Care Act that takes effect next January — the FMA says that shortage will only get worse.

#12 At this point, approximately 40 percent of all doctors in the United States are 55 years of age or older.

Source50 Signs that the U.S. Health Care System is about to Collapse

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America needs a new plan, one that puts American families back in control of their own healthcare decisions – not the government, and not the insurance companies.

America needs a plan that will provide families with Medical Savings Account (MSA) resources to accomplish that.

The Leviticus 25 Plan.

 

After 4 years and trillions of Dollars in Fed-generated liquidity: Food stamps – “UP to an all-time record.” Foreclosure activity up strong in certain major markets. Velocity of M2 Money Stock – “Dropping like a rock.”

Food stamp nation:                                                                                                         Nov 2012 (3-month delayed report): 47.7 million Americans on Food Stamps up 141,000 recipients from prior month.

Nov 2012 Total U.S. households on Food Stamps:  an all-time record 23,017,768 (at $281.21 / household / month).   ZeroHedge 2-11-13

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Foreclosure activity across the U.S.:                                                                          RealtyTrac (Jan 17, 2013) has reported that “a total of 2,304,941 foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessionswere reported on 1,836,634 U.S. properties in 2012.”                                                                         That is down slightly (3%) from 2011 and down more significantly from the peak year, 2010.  It was also noted that during 2012, 1 out of every 72 housing units in the U.S. received at least one foreclosure filing during the year.

Foreclosure activity in 2012 increased from 2011 in 25 states — 20 of  which primarily use the longer judicial foreclosure process — including  New Jersey (55 percent increase), Florida (53 percent increase),  Connecticut (48 percent increase), Indiana (46 percent increase),  Illinois (33 percent increase) and New York (31 percent increase).”

 And how is the new year starting out?

RealtyTrac (Feb 14, 2013) reports that for January 2013, “foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — were reported on [an additional] 150,864 U.S. properties in January.                                                                That is down 7% from December 2012.

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On the liquidity front, the Fed is pumping it out at a current rate of $85 billion per month.   And Velocity of M2V is dropping like a rock:  View here 1959 – 2012

The big-government central-planning approach is not working.                                         A new approach is needed.

The Leviticus 25 Plan

Fed QE flows – primarily going to foreign banks. Along with ‘billions’ in interest.

Source:  Zero Hedge 2/11/13:  “How The Fed Is Handing Over Billions In “Profits” To Foreign Banks Each Year

Fed QE flows over the past 4 years, dating back to March 2009, show that foreign banks have been the primary recipients of “cash generated by Fed excess reserves.”

Small domestic banks and large domestic bank cash reserves have been flat to modestly higher (a ‘steady’ $800 billion) over the 4-year period, while “Foreign Banks” have nearly doubled their cash reserves during that same time – from the newly created reserves.

This was confirmed by the Fed itself, which in a paper from November 2012, admitted just this when it said that “the recent unprecedented build-up of cash balances by [foreign banks] was almost entirely composed of excess reserves.”

And where does this “foreign bank” cash ‘park itself?’ 

Answer:  These foreign bank excess cash reserves are parked at “Reserve Banks” – currently about $954 billion, earning 0.25% interest (which the Fed decided to start paying out in December 2008).

The “Fed paid some $6 billion in interest to foreign banks, in the process subsidizing and keeping insolvent European and other foreign banks, in business and explicitly to the detriment of countless US-based banks who have to compete with Fed-funded foreign banks and who have to fire countless workers courtesy of this Fed subsidy to foreign workers.”

“From December 2008 through the last week of January [2013], the Fed has paid out some $6 billion in cash (red line) to European banks simply as interest on excess reserves:”

“But that’s just the beginning. If we are correct in assuming that QE3 will be a replica of QE2 when all the new reserves created ended up as cash on foreign bank balance sheets, it means that we can quite accurately forecast what the total foreign bank cash position will be on December 31, 2013 (as the Fed will certainly not end its open ended monetization of the US deficit before then, or likely, ever). The result: just under $2 trillion in cash held by foreign banks operating in the US, which also means that in calendar 2013, the Fed will fund and subsidize foreign banks a blended interest payment of $3.5 billion! This is entirely separate from the $2 trillion liquidity subsidy that Bernanke will also have handed out to keep these banks afloat, and is $3.5 billion that will flow right through the P&L and end up in the pockets of offshore shareholders who otherwise would very likely be wiped out had it not been for the Fed’s relentless efforts to bailout foreign banks.”

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If foreign banks are deserving of Federal Reserve-generated liquidity flows, then U.S. citizens are equally deserving.

It is time for U.S. citizens themselves to move to the head of the line – and receive their own credit extensions direct from the Federal Reserve.

The Leviticus 25 Plan.

4 long years of big-Government ‘central planning’ and trillions of Fed-printed dollars – employment numbers just ‘limping along’…

David Rosenberg (Gluskin Sheff) drills down for a closer look at the January numbers: “A variety of sobering developments in the latest data report.”

(Source:  ZeroHedge – Via Lance Roberts of Street Talk Live)

1) Let’s not forget that the 157k headline print was below consensus and 22% lower than the 201k average of the prior three months. That’s the problem with upside revisions — they go on to exaggerate the slowdown.

2) Private payrolls have slowed for two months running — 256k in November to 202k in December to 166k in January. This was actually the lowest print in four months and fully 26% lower than the three-month average. So get with the program — the pace of private sector job creation is slowing down, not speeding up.

3) Temp agency employment fell 8k in January, the first decline since last September. This sector is widely viewed as a leading indicator of labor demand.

4) Self-employment in the nonfarm sector plunged 189k, the sharpest decline since last February and down now in three of the past four months. This too is a leading indicator and moving in the wrong direction.

5) Average hourly hours for production and nonsupervisory fell 0.3% in January after a flat December. Another leading indicator heading in the opposite direction as escape velocity.

6) As for incomes, or lack thereof, average weekly earnings dipped 0.1% for production and nonsupervisory workers.

7) Household employment came in at the grand total of +17k. That is an 85% haircut from the average of the prior three months. Why all the exuberance over this report. The peak in Household employment was in October. How has that been missed by the masses, especially since it is this metric that leads at turning points?

8) The population and payroll comparable number from the Household Survey showed a 351k plunge, the second such large decline in the past three months.

9) The most cyclical component of payrolls is durable goods manufacturing – the grand total of +3k in January or 67% lower than the three-month average and the weakest tally since October. This widely-held view of “escape velocity” comes from where exactly? The front cover of Barron’s?

10) Education/health/leisure/professional services accounted for half the job gains last month. This is why the diffusion index for private payrolls slid to 59.6 from 64.5 in December, a four-month low. And in the mother of all non-ratifications, as it pertains to the ISM index, the diffusion index for manufacturing (which measures the breadth of the job gains) dropped from 54.9 to 48.1 in the first sub-50 reading since last September.

11) The markets rejoiced a report on Friday that revealed a 126k increase in the ranks of the unemployed in January and this followed a 164k pickup in joblessness the prior month. Try and convince these folks how great the economy is doing, Ditto for the 169k that dropped out of the labor force.

12) Of the increase in unemployment – those who were job losers jumped 229k, the sharpest advance since November 2010. Job leavers fell 2k and down in two of the past three months — a sign of receding worker confidence. New entrants dipped 4k after a 35k falloff in December. And re-entrants fell 72k, In other words, the churning or turnover in the labor market was left for wanting in January.

13) The manufacturing workweek slipping 0.25% to 40.6 hours from 40.7 and overtime stagnated for the second month in a row.  And you call this a renaissance? Average weekly hours sagged 0.5% in the key durable goods sector,

14) The short-term unemployed — a real-time cyclical indicator — measured by the number of folks unemployed for less than five weeks, spiked 90k after an 80k rise in December. And those unemployed for between 5 and 14 weeks soared 190k and up in three of the four months.

15) Those working part-time because they have to, not want to, due to “slack” economic conditions, jumped 198k in the steepest advance since last September.

16) The average weekly hours index for production and nonsupervisory workers — a GDP proxy — was down 0.2% in January, the sharpest decline since last August.                                                                                                                                 

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It’s time to think ‘outside the box.’                                                                                   The Leviticus 25 Plan.