President Trump recently addressed congress. He took the time to make updates on the policies he hopes to implement and to raise questions about current issues. What does that mean for preparedness? Let’s address a couple of his points and what that can mean for us.
The president pointed out that our middle class has been shrinking. A Pew Research Study (http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2015/12/09/the-american-middle-class-is-losing-ground/) found that the middle class comprised of 61% of the nation in 1971, while in 2015 it had dropped to a mere 50%. The questions begs to be asked… Where did all the middle-class citizens go? President Trump has implied that the exportation of U.S. jobs has played a large roll. He has also vowed to change that by creating new jobs.
Trump is planning to rebuild our countries infrastructure. He said, “Crumbling infrastructure will be replaced with new roads, bridges, tunnels, airports, railways, gleaming across our very very beautiful land.” With the plans to rebuild our infrastructure, comes the creation of jobs. These jobs could help to raise the amount of people included within the middle-class classification.
Another way he hopes to increase the amount of jobs, is by keeping big manufacturing companies here in the U.S. He listed off many major companies that have plans to build factories or are creating new jobs here in the states. Those companies include: Ford, Fiat, Chrysler, General Motors, Sprint, Softbank, Lockheed, and Wal Mart.
The Keystone XL pipeline is yet another way that jobs will be created, if only for a couple of years. It is estimated that over 21,000 positions will be created during the construction. Wilbur Ross, the Secretary of Commerce, has also be directed to ensure the pipelines are made from U.S. manufactured parts.
As preppers, we tend to have a variety of skills that can be developed or used throughout the various industries. With the recent and future creations of jobs, comes the opportunity to learn a new trade, or find a better position. Our various trade skills can help us to land the job.
Many of the new jobs created require some hands-on labor. However, that means you can keep your body healthy and strong. Should a disaster strike, you’ll have the ability and strength to rebuild your home or to help your neighbors.
Recently, the president had a meeting with some employees of Harley Davidson. His conversation drifted to sales overseas. In one country, their motorcycles are taxed at 100%. This raised the concern of fair trade. While our products produced in the U.S. are heavily taxed once sent overseas, incoming products are barely taxed.
Fair trade means that fair prices are paid for goods and services. While fair trade is definitely an ideal, it is not going to make everyone happy unless it is mutually agreed upon. One of the suggested ways to make it fair is that the U.S. impose tariffs on products being shipped to America. Now you may be thinking, but we’ll be taxing them. How is this going to affect me?
Products that we buy everyday are either being completely, or partially manufactured in other countries. By placing taxes or tariff on incoming products, the companies that sell them to the consumers are forced to raise their prices to cover the costs.
If the U.S. puts tariffs into effect on incoming products, the manufacturing company must raise their prices to cover the cost of that tax. If they raise the prices, the company that purchased those goods, whether it is car parts, textiles, even plastic, must now pay a higher price. What else are they going to do, but raise their own price for the finished good. That means the final product which you buy as the consumer costs much more than it originally did before the tariff was put in place.
At least as a prepper, we know to try and plan ahead. That means investing now in products can save you money in the long run. When you purchase a high-quality item that will last, you may not have to buy another one for a very long time, or ever.
This works similar to purchasing food storage. When you purchase your food now, the price is still the same when you purchase it as when you use it in say 20 years. However, the cost of that food has definitely risen in those 20 years.
For example, you purchase a package of food for five dollars. Let’s say, the food cost doubles in the next couple of years. That means when you actually eat that food, you save five dollars because you bought it today, instead of in a couple of years from now. Be prepared for rising costs by investing now.
President Trump called on Congress “to repeal and replace Obamacare.” Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act, was intended to improve access to health insurance for citizens. Part of President Trumps campaign was to get rid of and replace the plan.
Although a replacement plan has not been agreed upon. He urged congress to create a better healthcare system. He gave several guidelines. The first being to ensure that those with pre-existing conditions can still have access to coverage. This would bar discriminations against those members as long as they continue to have insurance and don’t let it lapse.
Second, tax credits and health savings accounts would be used to help citizens purchase coverage. This would give them the opportunity to purchase the plan that they choose.
Third, the state would be able to be flexible with Medicaid to help cover their citizens. While on the one hand, this could help save money for the state, the other hand could mean less coverage available for lower income families.
Fourth, will be to protect patients and doctors. In short, this will lower the premiums by limiting the amount of punitive damages in malpractice cases. The less amount the doctors can be sued for, the less malpractice insurance the doctors need to be covered for.
Fifth, the ability purchase health insurance across stateliness. This is intended to create a competitive market for insurance. Which means that your cost could be less.
With all the changes in healthcare, having health insurance could be tricky. Those that are covered under Obamacare could lose their coverage with no clear idea of whether they will still have access to coverage.
However, by making choices now to live a healthy life and to put money into savings, you could have some peace of mind knowing that you may not need as much insurance or that you will be able to afford the insurance once changes are made.
Remember that preparedness is all about doing what you can now to ensure your future is as normal as possible. It’s not possible to know what the future may hold for us, whether it is from an executive order, natural disaster, or even a job loss. But by being prepared, and hoping for the best, we can make sure that we provide the best we can for our loved ones futures.