Dedicated to Deposits: Deals, Data, and Discussion
Featured Savings Rates
Featured Accounts

76% Of Americans Are Living Paycheck-To-Paycheck

Monday, June 24, 2013 - 7:03 AM
Fewer than one in four Americans have enough money in their savings account to cover at least six months of expenses, enough to help cushion the blow of a job loss, medical emergency or some other unexpected event, according to the survey of 1,000 adults. Meanwhile, 50% of those surveyed have less than a three-month cushion and 27% had no savings at all.

http://money.cnn.com/2013/06/24/pf/emergency-savings/index.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+rss/money_latest+%28Latest+News%29
14
ShorebreakShorebreak2,607 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 14,112
1. Monday, June 24, 2013 - 9:38 AM
I wonder if this study was done on one or two paycheck families.  If it was on two paychecks, it is hard to believe they can't find a way to save.  Ours was always a one paycheck family and we managed to save, travel, always have new cars and no debt other than our house mortgage because we didn't buy anything we couldn't pay cash for.  It's called "self-discipline" and something the younger generation does not want to think about when it comes to money.  Has anyone noticed all the electronic gadgets on the market that we didn't (luckily) have.  Well it seems they just can't survive without their Ipods, Poopads etc. etc.  I just got my first computer 3 years ago and mainly to help me do better with our finances. Yes, we do splurge for a basic cellphone for emergency reasons but that does it for us. The age of electronics has not taken hold of our finances but I bet hundreds of dollars that could be saved goes to pay for all of these gadgets for those who say they "can't save".   If they are lucky enough to have a paycheck, they should be smart enough to be able to budget how to save.
5
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
2. Monday, June 24, 2013 - 9:47 AM
"Fewer than one in four Americans have enough money in their savings account to cover at least six months of expenses, enough to help cushion the blow of a job loss, medical emergency or some other unexpected event, according to the survey of 1,000 adults. Meanwhile, 50% of those surveyed have less than a three-month cushion and 27% had no savings at all."

First of all, 1000 samples are not sufficent for any meaningful statistics.  Second, how one comes up with these 1000 samples varies a lot.  I can poll, for example, all the Google employees and come up with a lot more positive results.

Third and in general, I agree that this is a spending and debt-centric culture.  Savings and retirement planning are foreign to many Americans. 
6
51hh51hh1,476 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 6,426
3. Monday, June 24, 2013 - 12:12 PM
I fully expect the situation to worsen as wage suppression continues to be in vogue globally.
10
ShorebreakShorebreak2,607 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 14,112
4. Wednesday, June 26, 2013 - 7:05 PM
Maybe this is why workers are living paycheck to paycheck
Congrats, CEOs! You’re making 273 times the pay of the average worker. 
2
Ally6770Ally6770909 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 2,643
5. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 12:59 AM
This is why we need a law that states you must have 100k in retirement funds- whether directly taken out of your paycheck or otherwise. We will be better off if we do.
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
6. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 8:07 AM
This is why we need a law that states you must have 100k in retirement funds- whether directly taken out of your paycheck or otherwise. We will be better off if we do."

(1) And how are people whose income is little more than what is needed for subsistence supposed to pay for their current living expenses? One way or another, society will end up bailing them out, either it's welfare now or subsidizing retirement later.

(2) Is there no end to the extent to which you are willing to allow government to control people's lives? Aside from the fact that it reduces citizens to the status of children, the more you make people depend on the government to "protect them" from themselves, the less responsible and self-reliant they will be. Then you will have to imagine still more paternalistic laws to deal with their decreased ability to rely on themselves.

(3) We already have something akin to what you are proposing. It is called Social Security. Now exactly how well is that working? And about your idea, who decides on which investment vehicles will satisfy the requirements of your law? Will it not be the government? A government that is currently approaching 17 trillion dollars in debt is hardly to be trusted with telling individuals how they should save.

4
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
7. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 8:32 AM
The government can't keep control of it's own employees and we are supposed to depend upon them to show us how to protect ourselves financially in our retirement years??  That is a joke!  They let their own people get away with spending millions of "our" tax dollars on so-called "conventions" and no one goes to jail for basically stealing "our" money.   I am sick of hearing over the news about how some other government agency spend millions for trips yet I never hear or read about the consequences they paid for their actions.  This is the government we want to tell us how to "save" money??.  Maybe people would have more to save if they didn't have to give up money so the gov agencies could go on million dollar trips.  I wonder what the next agency will be which will "need" to take a king's vacation on "our" tax dollars! 
2
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
8. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 4:06 PM
There is a reason why Obama was overwhelmingly reelected. The people want more government to give them more, not less. The government is to serve the people's best interest even if they don't know it themselves.
2
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
9. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 4:30 PM
 The government is to serve the people's best interest even if they don't know it themselves."

That's the justification of every dictatorship. And it is precisely to prevent government from overreaching its limits that the U.S. Constitution divides the government into three branches, and that its first ten amendments are a "Bill of Rights."
3
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
10. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 5:23 PM
As much as it concerns me and I hate to admit it, the US citizens are beginning to act like people who are ripe for a Dictator to take over.  It is great that we live in a country which takes care of those in need but if it "breeds" a nation of those who prefere to be "in need" rather than fend for themselves, we are begging for some person to take over our once great "free" country and enslave us to a dictatorship.  People like myself would have a hard time surviving in this type of a nation since we are too independent minded.   Anyone reading this and thinking it can't happen is either too young to be able to understand reality or is already a part of the "enslaved". 
2
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
11. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 5:40 PM
Let's not take this to extreme measures.  Who will honestly argue against a law to mandate 100k in retirement savings, precisely so you WON'T be dependent on the government?
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
12. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 5:53 PM
#11:  We are living in 2013.  Do you really think people can become independent with just 100k in retirement savings? If that is the goal you are aiming for, you will still have them on welfare!  One serious chronic illness for themselves or a child can blow that 100K before they can know they have it.  You need to set your sights quite a bit higher in this day and age.  Today I was watching a financial advisor on his tv show and he actually said he preferes people to have at least 200K before they try to actually talk to him about serious financial help.  Saving should be something people start at a young age and do for the rest of their lives.  If they do this and only end up with these amounts, they must have been on the wrong boat or with the wrong financial advisors.
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
13. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 5:58 PM
Oh I'm not saying that 100k is ALL you need for reitrement.  You need more, yes.  But you're not going to get a law passed on this, so I think something smaller and easier to swallow would be better- like 100k.  The rest of the money you have is up to you.  However, if a law gave a higher amount, I wouldn't argue against that either.
2
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
14. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 6:27 PM
Mustsave #13:  I am not against everyone saving but I don't think it is something you can force someone to do.  Think of all the people who don't take advantage of IRAs, 401Ks etc. etc.  Do you really think you can "mandate" and force these people to save?  It's like saving is a part of one's personality or it isn't.  I was raised due to my life, to be a saver soon as I could read and write.  My mom inbred it into to me and it became as automatic as eating.  Many people have to have a reason to save.  Just like you can't force someone to play a piano or love a certain kind of music, I don't think you can "force" someone to save who lives their life for just today and spend as much as they can.   These people are not the type who want to think about tomorrow much less 40 years down the line.  So as much as I understand the reason you want to mandate others to save, I just don't think it can be done and I don't know if I would want to see this "forced" on people.   I'd rather we do all we can to "encourage" others to save and give them good reasons to save. 
2
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
15. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 7:54 PM
Actually we can be forced.  No one asked me if I wanted to pay Social Security, for example.  We now mandate health insurance.  So this isn't unlike that.  We make laws to protect people from themselves all the time, so why not?  Besides, this is not unlike Social Security really.  It just takes it to the next level.  Isn't it the government's job to protect their citizen's well-being? 
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
16. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 9:11 PM
#15  Well how is your so called "mandate" different than what we already have with social security except you want them to take out enough withdrawals for people to supposedly have at least $100,000 for retirement?.  Are you serious?  What makes you think the government will have it available for them when the time comes?  Maybe they will use it for other things like they have with this SS and it will be bankrupt too?  Are you a gov agent just trying to find some way to get more of our money for the government?  :)  I was taking you seriously until your last post.  You just want to mandate more money for the gov to get their hands on.  No thank you.  If people want to save, they can do it without getting politicians involved.  
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
17. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 9:16 PM
I don't claim to have all the answers to all the problems.  But isn't mandating saving something, no matter how small, better than nothing?  And it isn't the government who will have it available for them- this isn't free money we're talking about.  It is your money sequestered for your retirement.  You can't spend it to splurge on stuff. 

Yes, it would be far easier for people to actually take personal responsibility.  But truth be told, I don't think most people do.

And I am serious.  No, I don't work for the government.  But I'm starting to think that for whatever reason, most Americans don't seem to be able to or want to help themselves.  So if you can't change the culture, maybe an imposed rule would be beneficial.  BTW, this goes for me too.  It might make me not spend so much if I knew I had less to work with.
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
18. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 9:23 PM
Americans have only themselves to blame for such a result.  It is a matter of spending prudently based on what you have/earn and save the rest.  It is not on what Americans "should" earn.

It is so true that the "spending it all" and "borrowing as much as possible" culture should be dtrastically changed.  How?  I thought the more conventional ways of 401K (via salary deduction) and payroll deduction to savings account are a start. 

I doubt that the Government ruling/enforcement would help.  Let's help ourselves, Americans.
3
51hh51hh1,476 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 6,426
19. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 9:29 PM
In all honesty, I think Americans look towards the goverment as their role model and think if the government can spend themselves into debt and get away with it, then why can't they?  That might be why there's so much credit card debt and other debt that they have only themselves to blame.

And no, I'm not a saint either.  I, too, have spent lavishly for many years (decades actually) until just recently.  I realized I have no savings, no emergency fund, and no monetary funds.  And I ain't getting younger, so I'm trying to change this now before it is too late.  Who would have thought that a potential mate would find this a potential dealbreaker rather than other stuff like looks?
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
20. Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 10:02 PM
Nobody in this discussion has answered my first question: how are people whose income is no higher than what is needed for bare subsistence supposed to meet their current living expenses if your fantasy of a retirement savings law were to become a reality? Furthermore, would the salary deduction from low income workers ever reach $100K? And what about people who have little or no earned income? They'd be left out entirely, wouldn't they? So, notwithstanding the question of whether this is any of the government's business, or the questionable wisdom of this idea, it cannot possibly achieve its defined goal universally.
3
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
21. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 6:55 AM
There are two issues: Why people have lower income and why people can not live withing their means?  The second issue is simpler: To live prudently within a strict budget (and save) as a habit and culture.

The first issue is tougher.  It involves how wealth is distributed more evenly from the Government side.  It involves how one advances one's education and training to qualify for a higher-pay job. 

Both issues are extremely important for a prosperous society.  But I think it starts with everyone building up a culture of frugal spending and maximum saving.  The income side (distributing wealth) is a complicated issue, with many factors beyond our control.  We can definitely do our part by equipping ourselves and working harder. 
2
51hh51hh1,476 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 6,426
22. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 8:32 AM
Wil:   "how are people whose income is no higher than what is needed for bare subsistence supposed to meet their current living expenses if your fantasy of a retirement savings law were to become a reality?"

I guess your question wasn't answered because we know you know the answer.  The mandate for 100K for everyone has no reality in it and I think the poster knows that.  Who was it said "The poor you will always have with you".  Now there was someone who could see into the future and know why such a "mandate" could never work.  Such a mandate would be a joy to the government because it would give them an excuse to scrutinize everyone's income, savings, etc. to make sure the ones who can save will be obeying the mandate.  Haven't we had enough of Washington prying into our lives? 

51hh has it right :   "it starts with everyone building up a culture of frugal spending and maximum saving."  Unfortunately, many of his "everyone" preferes to live their lives as they choose.

 

 

 

 

 
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
23. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 10:42 AM
51hh: there are people who live within their means and still don't have sufficient income to be able to save much. Forcing them to divert cash needed now towards retirement savings will push them over the financial cliff. There is always a possibility that they can "catch up" later in life when their circumstances change. And wouldn't it be a cruel joke if people were put into such a dilemma and then failed to live long enough to reach retirement age. Yes, it is best to start saving for retirement early and take advantage of the power of compounded interest. But there are people, by no fault of their own, who cannot do it right now.

Another thing: there will always be low paying jobs in ANY economy. Somebody will have to fill them. If native-born Americans don't, then we will import immigrants to fill them. So there will still be people who don't have the "luxury" of saving for the future when they are barely getting by in the present. Anyone who has ever lived in an inner city knows that perfectly well.

 Paoli: I think the poster may have personal reasons for being so assertive about this idea, given what was said recently by him/her in another thread. And you bring up a sobering point about giving the government greater ability to scrutinize people's finances, though the IRS already has too much power to do that already!
2
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
24. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 12:36 PM
 

In response to mustsavemore#8: There is a reason why Obama was overwhelmingly reelected. The people want more government to give them more, not less.

Obama’s win was only by 4% of the popular vote so not what I would define as overwhelmingly.  The people want more government to give them more. And at whose expense? Certainly not at the expense of the people that want more.

In order for a cultural change to occur that supports saving, some people need an incentive.  A carrot at the end of the stick. People are not going to save for themselves if their philosophy is to live their lives as they choose as Paoli2 stated. And if they have a problem there is always government assistance (food stamps, welfare etc…) to bail them out so where is the incentive?  1% interest? I don’t think so.

My wife gives me a funny look when I pick up pennies off the street. Point being, my values of saving are not going to change anymore than the attitude of people that don’t save are going to start saving with a flip of a switch. There needs to be a big enough carrot at the end of the stick for these individuals to save. Yes, there are people living paycheck to paycheck and my question to them is what are YOU doing to improve your sitution?
2
FARFAR106 posts since
Feb 26, 2013
Rep Points: 381
25. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 1:43 PM
Wil,

Agree that life is not fair.  But I think that it is a bigger issue than what we citizens (or Government) are able to resolve. 

Money is not everything, but one is surely miserable if one is not financially sufficient. 

Maybe I am missing something, so far we are pointing out issues that we are witnessing in this society; but the "rational" solution, if any, may be beyond our measures or capacity.

Thoughts? 

 
2
51hh51hh1,476 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 6,426
26. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 2:10 PM
FAR:  You gave me a laugh with your remark about picking up pennies off the street.  I have to force myself not to now that I am more financially secure.  My reasoning is that I am leaving it for someone else who needs it more.  Sad part is that most people, I think, even the needy would ignore that penny.  It's all about a state of mine we are in.  You either have it or you don't.  Enough pennies can turn into dollars and dollars into more larger bills.  When I was raised, my mom appreciated "any" type of currency and trained me to be the same.  I am glad you at least wanted to pick up that penny.

51hh:  You asked for thoughts and I have many but they would not be things even our posters would appreciate, I think.  One thing I will share is that if one wants to achieve large savings, if you are married, you "must" get the cooperation of your spouse and then your children that they are willing to accept your financial "way of life".  When my DP proposed, I saw that he had some credit card debts and no savings.  I made it clear that since "I" was the one who seemed to have the financial determination to save and handle money that I would not marry him unless he agreed to allow "me" to handle any and all finances.  For this I assured him he would never be in debt again or have a bill he couldn't pay and we would always pay cash for everything we wanted or needed and I would throw in two trips a years that "I" would plan and fit in our budget.  I also told him I didn't want to work at a job, my job would be keeping my word to him and handling the finances.  He thought I was nuts but agreed and today he is astounded at what I managed to achieve with so little money he brought home. 

It takes determination and dedication to making a success of saving just as it does for any thing you want to do in life.  Most men may not like the idea that their wife is responsibile for all the finances so that is why I state many posters here may not agree to such a life.  But if the husband is the one with the financial determination and knowledge then the job should go to him.  But whichever one takes up the sword has to make it to the finish line with an even "larger" sword. 

I do hope all posters here take up their savings sword and make it to the finish line (without ending up in a divorce!)  :)
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
27. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 3:06 PM
Wil,

Agree that life is not fair.  But I think that it is a bigger issue than what we citizens (or Government) are able to resolve."

My point exactly. Before citizens and/or government start imagining coercive measures, or draining the public treasury, in an attempt to make life fairer for some, they need to think matters through thoroughly first. Will the "medicine" be worse than the "disease"?

Paoli: you are reminding me of my mother again. My parents had the same arrangement.



2
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
28. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 3:20 PM
Wil:  " Paoli: you are reminding me of my mother again. My parents had the same arrangement."

Hmmmm.  Maybe I am your mother seeing if you are behaving on the internet.  :)  Just kidding!!!  I can't believe there could possibly be two Paolis in the world.  Then again, it just dawned on me I do call myself "Paoli2".  Maybe your mom is "Paoli1" .  :)  What a great lady she must be and she didn't do so badly with you either. 
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
29. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 3:21 PM
So someone please tell me this- if it is perfectly ok for the government to mandate that everyone has health insurance, then why not make some sort of mandate on retirement savings?  I think you could make the same argument for both.
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
30. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 3:35 PM
So someone please tell me this- if it is perfectly ok for the government to mandate that everyone has health insurance, then why not make some sort of mandate on retirement savings?  I think you could make the same argument for both.

Good question. I think that there is a difference between health insurance and mandated retirement savings. Social security system is more reasonable and actionable. It is a form of "retirement savings." To expand that system would require significant changes and carry huge risks for Government control (or out-of-control) and waste.

Imagine this, if a person owes $17 Trillions in debt and adds $2.5B a day, would you trust more money to him?  

2
51hh51hh1,476 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 6,426
31. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 3:59 PM
So someone please tell me this- if it is perfectly ok for the government to mandate that everyone has health insurance, then why not make some sort of mandate on retirement savings?  I think you could make the same argument for both.

 

I suppose you haven't seen the latest public opinion polls about the Affordable Health Care Act (aka "Obamacare"). More than half the population want it either repealed or seriously changed. And health insurance companies are warning of premium increases possibly exceeding 100% once it's fully implemented next year. Add to that, even some legislators who voted for it have voiced concerns that if it isn't changed it is going to be a "trainwreck." Finally, there are many people who don't think the government has the right to mandate that we have to purchase a product, such as insurance. You can't compare it to the requirement for car insurance. In the case of car insurance, if you wish to own and operate a car, then the state may mandate that you have auto insurance (i.e., driving a motor vehicle on public roads is a privilege). If you don't want to pay for car insurance, you don't have to drive ... you can walk, use taxis or public transportation, ride a bicycle, etc. But if someone doesn't wish to purchase health insurance (not a good idea, but some young people gamble that they're not likely of needing it; other people can't afford it, particularly if the mandate requires coverage for practically everything, not just hospitalization), what is his alternative? Leave the country? Commit suicide (which, by the way, is illegal)? So, instead he will be extorted into paying a tax penalty to subsidize a benefit for others that he himself doesn't have. And, if you recall the Supreme Court's ruling, it was only on the grounds of Congress' taxation powers that "Obamacare" passed constitutional muster. This from an administration that prior to the case reaching the Supreme Court was saying that the law was not a tax. So many people feel hoodwinked.

A more constitutionally sound idea, in my opinion, would be a national health care system, paid from the same kind of payroll deduction as Medicare to fund it. Of course, that would most definitely be a new tax, it would most likely be expensive (more expensive than predicted, just as has been the case with Medicare), and it would certainly mean a government takeover of the country's entire health care system. And it would never have passed Congress anyway. At a time when we're 17 trillion dollars in debt, we simply can't afford such a plan. But it would be less constitutionally tortured than the current health care law, and it would achieve a universality that the current law lacks. When are people going to realize that insurance is for catastrophic events, and not for every little sniffle and bruise that comes along in life? If you want more insurance coverage, then pay for it yourself.

P.S. You still haven't answered my questions #1 and #3 from my first comment in this thread. Everything you've said so far is about the government's alleged right to enact such a law as you are proposing.
1
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
32. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 8:58 PM
Wil- See my post #17 for your answer to #3.  And to be fair, that's over the entire history of government.  But thanks to Obama, over the past eight years we are finally hearing about government taking action in people's lives such as in healthcare.  True, not everyone would agree with it, and it's not a cure-all for all ills, but at least it's ACTION.  So why not have action for finances too?  See post #17 about my response about government- they won't pay it- each individual does. 

As for #1, well, a similar situation would be analogous to me or the goverment.  We spend a lot and wonder why we can't save more.  But if interest rates were higher so that even a little bit of money would generate more income, well, then I think you'd definitely see an incentive to save.  I know I would.  Right now the paltry interest rate is actually less a motivation to save. 
1
mustsavemoremustsavemore49 posts since
Jun 26, 2013
Rep Points: 152
33. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 9:22 PM
mustsavemore,

Setting aside the philosophical differences we have between the proper limits and functions of government, with all due respect, I really think that you have not fully thought through the full implications of your idea. To me, it seems the intellectual equivalent of a half-baked cake. And your #17 isn't a detailed answer to my question #3, it doesn't specify how this would work, it's still only a generalization. And I seriously doubt you are giving much thought to the hardship that channeling cash which low income people need now into a mandated retirement savings plan which might never accrue enough for them to ever be able to afford to retire. Think about it for a minute: if you are faced with a choice between putting cash into an account (and if we're talking a retirement account, one from which you cannot make a withdrawal for a very long time, at least not without a penalty) or food on the table, which would you choose? Action for action's sake, without thinking through all the consequences and details of the action, is both pointless and dangerous.

And did it ever occur to you that people may not want government involved in their personal lives? Certainly the founding fathers of our republic took great pains to ensure the government would be circumscribed within limits so that it wouldn't intrude into the people's personal life and freedom -- and that is the social compact, the "deal" so to speak, which the American people have historically "bought into." You propose to radically change that social compact -- you might cite President Obama's electoral victory as a mandate for such radical change, but remember that the opposition party also had an electoral victory, that of controlling the House of Representatives, as well. And that same opposition party controls a majority of the state governorships and legislatures. So the truth is that the country is divided. You simply cannot create a new social compact when the country is so polarized.
1
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
34. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 9:43 PM
To #33

Think you forgot about who was in charge the last 30 years when the districts were drawn. Gerrymandering? Districts should be drawn in squares or rectangles with the same number of people in each square. To count the people in each party by looking at voters registration while drawing districts insuring elections of the party who is drawing the districts  is not a democracy. 
1
Ally6770Ally6770909 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 2,643
35. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 10:00 PM
I agree about gerrymandering. I live in an electoral district resembling a snake, deliberately designed to benefit the Democratic party. There's plenty of blame to go around on both sides. But getting back to my point, surely you must recognize that the country is too divided to radically change the social compact on which this country was founded.

But getting back to the substance of this debate: mustsavemore is proposing that the government dictate to people what to do with what is their own. It is an assault on the very meaning of private ownership. The idea is also short on details, and might possibly harm, rather than help, people who may already be just barely getting by. Go into the nearest inner city neighborhood and try pitching this idea. They will laugh in your face.
2
WilWil242 posts since
Feb 26, 2010
Rep Points: 1,285
36. Friday, June 28, 2013 - 10:57 PM
Before I end for the night I have to share something I encountered about the government trying to do what they think is best for us.  Is anyone aware that on July 1st of this year Medicare is enacting a new system for diabetics where they must get their diabetic supplies from 18 mail order pharmacies which were involved in a "bid" for prices and the 18 ones who won the bid supposedly will give the best prices.  As in other government issues, they don't think them out fully.  I tried this week for hours calling all the pharmacies on the list to get a supply of a certain brand of blood testing strip which my DD has used for years which is for the testing machine she has and could not find but "one" company which I never heard of which had the strips!  I called back all the others and were told they refused to sell these strips now because Medicare was only allowing them to make about $10.00 a box and that was way below what the boxes cost them.  They couldn't stay in business at this rate!  I called the company which makes the strips and asked if they knew what Medicare was doing to their product and they certainly did and were very upset by it.  In trying to make  prices cheaper Medicare did not take into consideration the consequences to the companies and the people who need that company's product!   A company has to be able to make enough on a product to cover being in business.   So now I am forced to use the one company which Medicare has given the winning bid to if I want to order the needed supplies through mail order. 

What ever happened to free enterprise in this country?  I like saving money on medical supplies but not at the risk of putting the company who makes my supplies out of business!  They are doing the same thing to doctors and hospitals and any business they can get to.   I can see the affect it is already having on my doctors and it isn't good.    They are truly trying to squeeze money out of anything having to do with Medicare so they can use it to protect Obamacare!  Is this the kind of government we fought to have?   And now MustSave wants them to force people to save $100,000.00 !   Be careful what you ask for MustSave because you are not dealing with a government our forefathers envisioned.   I don't want this government involved in anything more than they really have to be!   Their intentions sound good in the beginning but when they actually put forth their ideas, it seems to cause havoc on the businesses we have been depending on for years for our products. I do NOT want my government deciding where I can buy my products and which companies can sell them.   The Mail Order company for our insurance which we used for years is no longer even carrying the product!

On that note, I will  say Goodnight. 
2
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
37. Saturday, June 29, 2013 - 10:12 PM
To Post #36-- Just one of several articles---

Medicare Savings Coming for Diabetic Supplies - US News and World Report 
2
Ally6770Ally6770909 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 2,643
38. Sunday, June 30, 2013 - 8:04 AM
Rosie:  Thanks for the article but it is not as simple as they make it sound.  First of all you have to be using Medicare and not be on an Advantage Plan to get these extra savings from what I was told after hours of calls.  Trying to find a Mail Order Pharmacy to give one the discounts is another nightmare.  Of the 18, I could only find "one" which still carries the brand strips needed.  The others say they can't make a decent profit from selling them so they don't!  Medicare can't (at least at this time) force a company to sell a "certain" product.  They at least still have freedom of choice.  I am not doing this for myself (thank goodness, I am not diabetic) but for a relative.  I assure you nothing the government does supposedly "to help us" works as great as they make it sound.
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
39. Sunday, June 30, 2013 - 9:48 AM
Then the issue is not with the gov but with your insurance company. The insurance companies with Medicare Advantage plans  receive nearly $800 (some more)  a month from Medicare funds to cover Medicare patients so they should be able to service your relatives needs. Most meters are free at many of the drugstores or with coupons. The cost of the strips are the issue.  This is where these companies make money.  Maybe changing the meter or calling your insurance company that pays for the strips would be the solution. Assumed by your post that you had Medicare. A call  to the insurance company should settle the issue. If not then a call to the doctor if a prescription for the strips is needed. There is an appeal process also. 
1
Ally6770Ally6770909 posts since
Jan 16, 2010
Rep Points: 2,643
40. Sunday, June 30, 2013 - 11:23 AM
Rosie:  Thank you for your input but I have already called all the places involved.  These strips always need an RX.  The person involved prefers this particular meter and has used it for years without having a problem getting the strips.  Now that Medicare has made other strips so much cheaper and the company for her strips lost the bid, they are not easily available even paying the regular copay.  That is the problem.  Medicare may have helped many others but some are having problems now.   I will get this resolved for her one way or the other.  She will get what she needs.  It just has been made more difficult and expensive for those on Advantage Plans.
1
paoli2paoli21,367 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,993
Reply