Link: Obama officials made clear in a press briefing that firms would not be allowed to lay off workers to get into the preferred class of those businesses with 50 to 99 employees. How will the feds know what employers were thinking when hiring and firing? Simple. Firms will be required to certify to the IRS – under penalty of perjury – that ObamaCare was not a motivating factor in their staffing decisions. To avoid ObamaCare costs you must swear that you are not trying to avoid ObamaCare costs. You can duck the law, but only if you promise not to say so.
Link: As Congress debates an overhaul of the tax code, it is considering implementing new taxes that will have a dramatic impact on the middle class and effectively raise taxes on about 96 million people. This blanket-style review of the tax code would end the tax-exempt status for nonprofit credit unions, which would jeopardize tens of thousands of jobs and stifle economic growth.
Link: Could real estate on American soil owned by China be set up as “development zones” in which the communist nation could establish Chinese-owned businesses and bring in its citizens to the U.S. to work? That’s part of an evolving proposal Beijing has been developing quietly since 2009 to convert more than $1 trillion of U.S debt it owns into equity.
Link: Bitcoin, the digital currency once known for powering the black market of the deep web, has officially caught the attention of the proverbial Man. The US government is working to regulate and control the crytocurrency; law enforcement is confiscating millions of virtual coins used for illegal transactions; and venture capitalists and entrepreneurs are chomping at the bit to profit from the hype.
Link: A chart we found on Reddit.com today shows that most products we buy are controlled by just a few companies. It’s called “The Illusion of Choice.” Ever wonder why you can’t get a Coke at Taco Bell? It’s because Yum! Brands was created as a spin-off of Pepsi–and has a lifetime contract with the soda-maker.
Link: When combined with Uncle Sam’s current income and payroll tax regimes, the gradual expiration as income increases of Obamacare’s “tax credits” will raise the portion of income taken by the government for each additional dollar of earnings to between one-third and one-half, effectively taxing most American workers at marginal rates usually limited to the planet’s highest income earners.
During the presidential campaign last fall, a single message was repeated endlessly in Appalachian coal country: President Barack Obama and his Environmental Protection Agency, critics said, had declared a “war on coal” that was shuttering U.S. coal-fired power plants and putting coal miners out of work.