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Missile Defense and Our Economy

Missile Defense

President Obama announced on Thursday that the U.S. is pulling out of plans to build a missile defense radar on Czech territory. The Heritage Foundation has released a documentary on the urgent call to protect America called 33 Minutes, the amount of time it would take a ballistic missile to reach and obliterate a U.S. city from Iran.

Fact-Checking the Numbers on Our Economy

All too often numbers and assertions are thrown around by the mainstream media, but seldom are those numbers and assertions actually fact-checked. Below are four recent assertions made about our economy and health care with an accompanying fact-check by the research at The Heritage Foundation.

  • President Obama inherited the 2009 budget deficit: False. The estimated 2009 budget deficit has increased by $400 billion since the current Presidents inauguration, and the whole point of the “stimulus” was to increase deficit spending to nearly $2 trillion based on the unproven notion that it would alleviate the recession. This suggests that even if the President had not inherited a big deficit, he would have created one as a matter of anti-recessionary policy.
  • You’ll be able to keep your health insurance if you like it: False. Misguided incentives in the proposed employer mandates and public plan will encourage employers to pay a fine and dump their employees out of their existing private coverage and onto a public plan or other alternatives. Moreover, under current legislation, the government would have the authority to determine the benefit packages that Americans get, including which medical treatments, procedures, devices, and drugs are necessary. The end result: Americans will get what the government decides they can receive in terms of health benefits.
  • The Presidents stimulus bill has slowed unemployment and has created or saved between 500,000 and 1 million jobs: False. Job creation has fallen since the stimulus became lawwhich is precisely why unemployment has increased so sharply during this recession. In the month of August the unemployment rate got even worse it jumped from 9.4% to 9.7%. And the stimulus has done nothing to reverse this dangerous effect. While touting the potential benefits of a stimulus package earlier this year, the Administration claimed that the unemployment rate would no longer be climbing by the summer of 2009 and that it would peak at 8 percent. Now, after the passage of the stimulus bill, the Administration expects unemployment to continue to increase this year and exceed 10 percent.
  • Health care will not be rationed with a government-run plan: False. Government health care programs like Medicaid have a history of lower-quality care. By reducing payments to doctors and hospitals, Americans on these programs generally have a harder time finding a doctor who will accept them as a patient. The dwindling availability of doctors who can afford to take┬áthese patients coupled with the governments say in what type of procedures and drugs are covered under its plan ultimately results in less access to care. Moreover, the White House might accuse insurers of rationing care, but research shows patients with Medicaid and SCHIP (State Childrens Health Insurance Program) end up in emergency rooms more often than the privately insured, and even the uninsured.

Real Solutions. The new budget spending estimates are alarming and absolutely unsustainable and they are the true cause of these appalling levels of deficit and debt. In this budget context, the President’s and Congress’s brazen proposals to spend another $1 trillion for health care reform are reckless and unaffordable. President Obama has proposed massive tax increases that still cannot keep up with the historic spending increases he has proposed. The result will be the highest level of spending and debt in American history. Lawmakers should instead focus on capping federal spending, restraining entitlements, and eliminating wasteful and lower-priority programs.

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