Posted Mar 2, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
Healthcare costs have continued to outpace inflation and just about everything else within the economy. Generally speaking, prices rise when demand increases relative to supply. The scheme of Obamacare was to force the youth to buy healthcare they did not need to pay for everyone else. The fines have been less than the costs so many of the youth just pay the fine. Forcing people to buy insurance to artificially lower the costs failed because healthcare is no different and has risen, not declined, with the false rise in demand.
Additional forces have also been contributing namely political decisions from Obamacare, additional taxes, and increased regulations have combined to impact healthcare costs. There has also been the notorious increase in lawsuits which influence the cost of malpractice insurance for medical practitioners forcing costs to also rise. Congress would never introduce Tort Reform because there are too many lawyers who would see their big paydays vanish.
McDonald’s is starting to replace people with auto-self-serving. Now Wendy’s is doing the same thing. Wendy’s plans to install self-ordering kiosks at 1,000 stores by the end of 2017. McDonald’s already beat them to the punch but we are witnessing this trend in many other businesses as well, such as movie theaters and airports. Corporate costs will decline with robots and automated order machines contributing to increasing corporate profits since they are not lowering prices. American Airlines is really anti-consumer. They charge $200 to speak someone to change your ticket when the ticket cost is even just $174. Healthcare costs rising faster than everything else will force companies to abandon workers whenever possible and this is impacting both manufacture as well as services.
So, what is the issue? Is it really just hourly wages? No! Any business with more than 25 employees are being hit with rising healthcare costs that amount to a monopoly from which the only possible relief is to eliminate people. Many small companies have tried to pay healthcare and have been forced to keep raising the deductible. Effectively, healthcare is devolving into catastrophic coverage. Many doctors are refusing to take people on government programs including Medicare because the government cheats them and is slow to pay.
Bill Gates may have been great at creating Microsoft, but when it comes to economics and law, he is off in the Cloud lost in his mind. What he has come out as a solution is to tax machines as if they are people? Gates said, “You’d think we’d tax the robot at a similar level” as humans and then the taxes a company pays would support society? So we become a world of couch potatoes?
Just maybe, we stop the subsidizing of healthcare, introduce Tort Reform, and replace government workers with robots to eliminate taxation on the people. That would be one alternative if we are looking at this new future world. In places like Greece, it is the government that accounts for 40% of GDP. In the USA, Fiscal Year 2017 is estimated at a total of all US government spending, federal, state, and local, to be $7.04 trillion. This will be 36% of GDP.
The US National Defense will be 4% of GDP while government pensions will be 7% plus government healthcare will be 8% compared to welfare is only 2%. Even education is 6% and that is highly questionable for it is really subsidizing the socialist philosophy. Our problem is government workers – not welfare or even military.
We need robots to replace government.