Category: Policy

Why Does the Stock Market, Against All Odds, Keep Climbing?

Why Does the Stock Market, Against All Odds, Keep Climbing?
What goes up, must come down, right? Well, eventually, but it doesn't sound like that will happen any time soon. Thursday saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the NASDAQ and the S&P 500 all reach record highs. Even Bitcoin pushed past the $40,000 for the first time in its history. One would think, given all the chaos that ensued in the capital of the United States of America on Wednesday that markets would be in turmoil. In reality, it's the polar opposite, and there many reasons for that. Given the worldwide pandemic, and an extremely depressed job market, it would seem that we're heading towards a bear market, but it's not here yet....

Consumer Sentiment Highest Since Pandemic Began

Consumer Sentiment Highest Since Pandemic Began
The current stock market levels are very misleading, as the indices are all artificially inflated by Federal government intervention. Eventually reality will set in, and we'll all come down to Earth, but there is still some reason to be bullish going forward. One reason is that the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index, formerly known as the consumer confidence index, is now at its highest level since the coronavirus pandemic broke out and hamstrung the economy. Apparently, the consumer market in the world's richest country is feeling better right now about the state of things that at any previous point during COVID...

Big Ten Makes Big Dice Roll on Restarting Football

Big Ten Makes Big Dice Roll on Restarting Football
Yesterday was a huge news day as the Big Ten announced the football season’s return on October 23 and October 24. It was a long day of wordy public statements and protracted Zoom calls with the media. There is a wide range of thoughts and feelings one could have about this decision, but if you're not conflicted and ambivalent, you're just not paying attention. Sadly, society rewards, via the of lavishing attention upon, those two polarities while ignoring the analysis that contains nuance and contradiction. The Big Ten is taking a huge risk, albeit a very carefully calculated one. ...
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Amazon to Remain Dominant Even as New E-Commerce Giants Grow

Amazon to Remain Dominant Even as New E-Commerce Giants Grow
As Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is set to appear for an antitrust hearing before the United States Congress on Wednesday it's symbolic of the emerging e-commerce hegemony. Bezos, 56, is projected by some market evaluation tools and metrics to become the world's first trillionaire sometime in 2026. With a current net worth estimated at $156 billion, if Bezos was his own country, he'd currently be the 169th richest nation on Earth. Yes, this is one man and his unfathomable wealth, at a time when the greater economy itself is plunging into freefall...

Illinois vs Indiana: Comparing the two States COVID Response, Reopening Plans

Illinois vs Indiana: Comparing the two States COVID Response, Reopening Plans
Chicagoans, when they cross the border into northwest Indiana, are likely to experience a very visible ad campaign that the state aggressively pushes in that area. The marketing campaign stresses the lower taxes for both individuals and businesses in the Hoosier state, and how the cost of living in Indiana is lower.  However, comparing the Land of Lincoln to the Crossroads of America is sort of like apples and oranges, given how Illinois contains Chicago, the nation's third largest city and the absolute hub and de facto capital city of the Midwest. Having a major metropolis like this means Illinois has had to approach the COVID-19 pandemic in a completely different way than Indiana...

Tax Revenue Shortfalls Could Speed Up Legalized Sports Betting

Tax Revenue Shortfalls Could Speed Up Legalized Sports Betting
It may seem counter-intuitive at first, but the lockdown orders currently in place all across the United States might actually provide a major boost of momentum for the sports betting legalization movement. State by state stay-at-home orders were put into place to slow the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, allowing only the essential businesses to remain in operation.  It has led, expectably, to a major decline in tax revenue. With unemployment now already at Great Depression levels and very few people buying much of anything beyond the basic needs these days, we've seen a severe reduction in both income taxes and sales taxes. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, whose states borders the world's coronavirus epicenter in New York City, said last month that revenues “have fallen off a table.”...
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Other States Catching up to Illinois in March Towards Legal Sports Betting

Other States Catching up to Illinois in March Towards Legal Sports Betting
Last year Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law a bill that allowed for six more casino licenses in the state and to make horse racing venues able to provide casino games. This year’s horse racing season starts in March, but there's another, and much bigger, sports wagering event coming up this month. The NCAA Tournament, colloquially known as "March Madness," generates billions of dollars in wagering, according to the AGA (American Gaming Association). It's easy to see why Gov. Pritzker wants to get legal sports betting up and running in the Land of Lincoln in time for the tournament, which begins in earnest on March 19. If Illinois doesn't get going, they are likely to fall behind other Midwestern states...

Ford Hoping Drivers Will Forgo Privacy for Auto Insurance Discounts

Ford Hoping Drivers Will Forgo Privacy for Auto Insurance Discounts
No one will ever admit to being a bad driver, or a bad lover. In the case of the former, typically your driving record speaks for you, but now there is a new, additional level of monitoring and evaluation that has come along. It's not just Big Tech and online media companies that want to collect your data these days, the automotive industry is getting in on the act as well. After all, every new car these days is highly computerized, and any automobile with a navigational system is tracking you through satellite data. And Ford motor company is banking on the idea that you'll forgo some of your privacy in exchange for cheaper auto insurance...

"Patriot Penalty:" Soldiers Hit with Higher Auto Insurance Rate

"Patriot Penalty:" Soldiers Hit with Higher Auto Insurance Rate
If you have to pick one television series that truly encapsulates the American ethos, perhaps it's CNBC's "American Greed." If you watch the docuseries regularly, you'll be constantly on guard against businessmen and businesswomen incessantly trying to hood wink you. With that mind, we give you the "Patriot Penalty," a relatively new scheme that involves auto insurance companies charging deployed armed services members higher rates than civilians. It's especially surprising, given how so many insurance companies wrap their branding in the American flag. While numerous companies within many industries love project an image of being excessively friendly to those who serve, insurance advertising often takes it up a notch...
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Where Leading Democratic Candidates Stand on Health Insurance

Where Leading Democratic Candidates Stand on Health Insurance

The Iowa Caucuses were held last night and with it, primary season is now officially here. Voting has begun, and we're now less than a month from "Super Tuesday," where 14 states will hold their primaries. March 3 will get here before you know, so it's the perfect time to look at where the leading Democratic front-runners stand on the issue of health care.

The number one issue for voters in 2020 will be "electability," no doubt about it, but that's just an idea/belief, it's not policy or platform. Also, electability is a bit of a misnomer anyway.  Health care, which in realpolitik means health insurance, is the primary issue that voters need to be up to speed on.

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