The votes are in. The chads are hanging, and the dust has settled.
After a record number of voters have participated in our recent election, we are left with what fiscal conservatives have feared the most, an Obama Nation.
Winning more than 50 percent of the popular vote (although I wonder if those votes included Mickey Mouse and Bart Simpson), Obama has a clear mandate from the people to enact his plans and policies for America.
But what will those plans and policies mean to your wallet?
The first place that everyone seems to go is taxes. We'll get there.
But I want first to talk about other Obama initiatives that will surely have an impact on your bank account, the first of which is healthcare.
Lost in the shuffle of Obama's tax-cut rhetoric is the fact that he is planning a major overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system.
Under Obama's plan, U.S. healthcare providers would be mandated to provide coverage to anyone who applies, regardless of pre-existing conditions.
While that sounds good on first glance, let's see how that could affect your wallet.
Health insurance premiums are difficult to understand, but here's how they work.
If your health insurance provider has to pay out a lot of money for claims, your premiums go up. If your health insurance provider doesn't have to pay out a lot of money for health claims, they can afford to keep your premiums where they are or lower them.
If the government mandates that health insurance companies can't deny coverage for high risk individuals with pre-existing conditions, the health insurance providers will have higher claims costs.
If the cost of claims rises for health insurance companies, they don't absorb those losses. They simply pass them on to the consumer.
By some estimates, healthcare premiums could double or triple under an Obama administration because we would see higher numbers of insureds with higher claims paid per person.
As health-insurance premiums skyrocket, the reality is simple. Less people will be able to buy private health insurance.
This will cripple a fledgling private U.S. health insurance sector.
According to a report on the sector released by Moody's, the ratings agency has changed its outlook for the sector from stable to negative.
The report cited operational, economic, and political challenges for the industry which will result in lower earnings and lower growth rates.
What that means is that people have less money to pay for health care; that there will be more people needing healthcare; and that and government will mandate that everyone be insured, regardless of high-risk, previous conditions.
I agree that something has to be done about healthcare because Americans should have health insurance, but skyrocketing private healthcare insurance costs because of unfunded government mandates is not a solution.
Don't be shocked to see that $500 to $1,000 a month bill for your family’s health coverage to go up to as high as $1,500 to $3,000 a month.
That is, unless you want to be part of Obama's new government healthcare system, which will have 50 million plus new recipients, but somehow also have no long lines. Good luck.
Obama's foreign policy may also affect the cost of food and the goods that you buy every day.
Over the course of the campaign, Obama made his intentions known that he would like to opt out of NAFTA, and that in general he opposes free trade, as evidenced by his senatorial record of voting against free trade agreements.
You have to remember that free trade makes clothing cheaper and food less expensive because the products are not being taxed before they are sold to you, the consumer.
Under an Obama presidency that may change. That $15 dress shirt that you bought, that was made in Mexico, imagine it now costing $25. That's what will happens to goods that we buy under Obama.
Protectionist policies, such as those supported by President-elect Obama, hurt the country more than they help, because they drive up the price for consumer goods and make it harder on American families to make ends meet.
In truth, almost every Obama policy will have a dramatic impact on your wallet because mostly every policy that he has requires new spending.
Obama has planned almost $1 trillion in new spending over the next four years on top of the $700 billion bailout that was recently passed and our current $455 billion budget deficit.
How will he get the money?
That's very simple. He will raise the dividends tax to 20 percent, the capital gains tax up to 28 percent, uncap the Social Security tax, and raise income taxes (amongst many other taxes).
When you have new spending, you have to have a way to pay for the new spending. That leaves two options: raise taxes, or print more money.
Or in Obama's case, do both, making it harder for Americans to support their families and making the value of a dollar lower than it has ever been in history.
What good is a $1,000 wealth redistribution check, or as Obama calls it "a middle-class tax cut," when the value of a dollar may be half of what it used to be?
What good is the $1,000 middle-class tax cut when the real cost of living may go up anywhere from $2,500 to $5,000 per person?
Unfortunately America, that is what Obama could mean to your wallet.
But when the cost of living goes up and families have less money to pay their bills, America should remember this: That was the change you voted for.
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