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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Jerry Jackson: Numbers, gays, and Obamacare

  • The march goes on for the beleaguered legislation known as Obamacare.
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  • Recently George Will, a columnist for The Washington Post, wrote that numbers are essential to government and to private industry.  He explains Target and Wal-Mart tailor their inventories to regional, even neighborhood differences revealed in carefully compiled data.
                Similarly the Welfare Reform Act of 1996 which was applied conservatism happened because empirical data convinced enough Democrats of the costs of welfare dependency.  Unfortunately today’s Democrat leaders in both the Senate and the White House seem completely oblivious to numbers affecting our economy and government spending.  About the only numbers so many of the left consider important are how many votes will this policy or legislation affect.
                What George Will didn’t cover is the understanding of or how numbers are computed.  A week ago a radio host was interviewing the ultra-liberal Colorado Governor, Mr. Hickenlooper.  The good governor was explaining excitedly how he was supporting a new tax for Colorado.  This new increase in income tax, as he proposed, was only a 1 ½ percent increase for taxpayers.  The radio host had to patiently explain a 1 ½ percentage point increase was actually a 27 percent increase in the actual tax.  Even though the radio man illustrated how that works, the governor seemed confused and I don’t believe he ever understood.
     
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                Have you heard the propaganda dispersed by Governor Beebe’s good friend and who is the head of the Arkansas Development Commission?  With a straight face and without any empirical data, Mr. Tennille called for Arkansas to become the first state in the region to embrace same sex marriage.
                His reason – why, we should all realize as he explains it, that doing so would yield unprecedented economic growth for the state, encouraging high-skilled, high-tech and knowledge-based workers to move in.  Well, give me a break.  I didn’t realize that straights were so deficient in skills for the modern world.  I also didn’t realize that if you wanted to get ahead in this technical proficient world, the chances are much better if you are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender.  So let’s bring in all the GLBT crowd from California, New York and New Jersey.  This will be a boon to our economy but just think the void that would leave in those other states.
    Page 2 of 2 -             No need to remind Mr. Tennille that voters in 2004 approved an amendment to our constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman.  They not only approved it, they voted in the affirmative by 75 percent.
                As a taxpayer in Arkansas, I’m completely disgusted we are paying taxpayer dollars to compensate the Executive Director of Economic Development to promote his own social preferences instead of paying attention to his prescribed duties.
     
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                The march goes on for the beleaguered legislation known as Obamacare.  In the dark of night, more specifically on the July 4th weekend, Kathleen Sebelius announced the qualification for receiving federal subsidies to pay insurance premiums will be on the honor system.
                To illustrate the complete ridiculousness and danger of this policy consider if you were making $75,000 per year and you declared you made only $20,000, the federal government will pay your health insurance premiums.  Unbelievably there will be no attempt to verify your income.
                If you believe this little honor program will not be abused, you need a dose of reality.  This simply means the cost of Obamacare will be increased by billions.  But what’s another 200 or 300 billion dollars when we already know the costs will be trillions more than estimated. A leading Democrat senator makes this defensive statement on Obamacare’s many foibles – “If we waited for perfection, nothing would ever get done”.
                On a related subject many of us have warned that because of Obamacare private industry will convert to many more part-time jobs.  This is a real burden for workers who will be forced to live on fewer wages or acquire another part-time job. The Wall Street Journal reports that so far in 2013 the U.S. workforce has added 93,000 part-time jobs monthly compared to 22,000 full-time.  In 2012 the reverse was true.  The monthly average for full-time jobs was 171,000 and only 31,000 part time jobs.  Convinced yet?
     
    (Jerry Jackson of Heber Springs writes his “conservative viewpoint” column each week)
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