Brainstorms 7/6/2017

Ferrin Cox

Thursday, Jul 06,2017

Federal medical insurance known as “Obamacare” is in the headlines daily. Once the population has gotten the taste of benefits from a federal program, it is next to impossible to cut them out. After surviving for generations without the government handouts – on any government program and in any country – efforts to reduce or cut them out, once started, are met with horror stories that are real and unnerving. Get away from our medical insurance debate a moment and realize that Greece is an example of this mindset. Other countries are repeatedly bailing out Greece financially yet when they try to reign in their own federal spending it causes riots in the streets and thus no change in the government’s deficit spending. That brings on additional bailouts, etc., etc. Hey, this sounds almost like we are describing America! At least on the part about deficit spending and marches in Washington when spending cuts get on the front burner. Or course we suspect that there are some in Washington that promote these marchers and hand wringers to justify their own agenda. Now don’t call us cynics but . . .

There was a record amount (millions upon millions) spent in a recent political race in Georgia. The “experts” billed the race as a test on President Trump’s popularity. Of course when the Republican woman won there was cheering on the winning side and blame placing on the losing side. We did not see, nor hear, any of the experts suggest the main reason for the Democrat loss where our simple brain thought it should have been placed. The Democrat candidate was a filmmaker (easy to connect with the Hollywood crowd and Nancy Pelosi); plus he was never effective in convincing the voters that he is one of them. Had he been the Republican and the woman the Democrat, the Democrat would have won simply because she ran as “one of them” in that voting district. George Wallace could have taught that guy a few things about politicking. When Wallace traveled the branch heads and hollows of Alabama he talked their language and tried to personally identify with the area. He also liked to be critical of the news media . . . . but he ALWAYS made an exception of any newspaper in that local area. George was a Democrat and a political winner – this Georgia Democrat and first time candidate was not.

Federal student loans are costing more as of last Saturday. The official interest rate is pegged to the Treasury Department’s cost of borrowing money on May 10th each year. Already we hear daily of nightmare loans college students are racking up and now it can only be worse. When one hears of the normal debt of a college graduate being well above $30,000 and in some cases over $100,000 it is cause to shudder. It seems a simple solution to the problem is for students, parents and grandparents to start saving for college early, the student needs to get some sort of job, before college and during college, keep the nose in the books during high school and qualify for scholarships, etc. It might not be enough to cover all the costs, but cutting the student loan balance in half is a whopping savings. Also when we see the cars loaded with college students headed to the beach, we wonder how much money they are spending on these trips that would have been a big help on that exploding college expense.