State of the Union
Since President Obama's State of the Union Address Tuesday night, there have been a lot of articles dissecting his remarks and picking his proposals apart. As you might suspect, the vast majority have been politically charged by one side of the aisle or the other.
As Chief Investment Strategist for Money Map Press, I can't afford the luxury of taking sides. It's my job to help the hundreds of thousands of investors who are part of our family with their money...politics aside.
If you're with me, then I've got five bullet points - key takeaways really - from the president's speech that can help you grow your money this year and for the remainder of President Obama's second term.
Minimum Wage Increase: Obama's Proposal and Realities
In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, President Barack Obama urged Congress to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $9, saying the move would reduce poverty and stimulate the economy.
"Tonight, let's declare that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty, and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour," President Obama said. "This single step would raise the incomes of millions of working families. It could mean the difference between groceries or the food bank, rent or eviction, scraping by or finally getting ahead.
"For businesses across the country, it would mean customers with more money in their pockets. And a whole lot of folks out there would probably need less help from government."
Unions and labor advocates are among the chief supporters of an increase in the federally mandated minimum wage.
"The president said he was putting jobs and the economy front and center tonight, and that's exactly what he did by calling for a minimum wage increase," Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, said in a statement.
"A higher minimum wage is key to getting the economy back on track for working people and the middle class. The president's remarks also cement the growing consensus on the left and right that one of the best ways to get the economy going again is to put money in the pockets of people who work."
But opponents of raising the federally mandated minimum wage have a decidedly different view of the president's proposal.
The 2012 State of the Union Tax Reforms That Could Affect You
Five Things Obama Didn't Want You to Hear in His State of the Union
Seeking to put the best possible spin on his message, President Barack Obama took some liberties with the truth in his State of the Union address.
Although the president never actually lied, he repeatedly left out facts that contradict his claims of success.
President Obama hadn't yet left the House chamber when the reality check started. And it didn't take long to find some pretty big the holes in the State of the Union address.
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Obama's Trade Enforcement Unit and the Looming Trade War with China
Restoring the Dream: State of the Union Pitches an Economy "Built to Last"
In a speech before the nation last night, President Obama's State of the Union Address spoke of a new American economy that is "built to last."
Of course, in the wake of the dot com bubble, the subprime mortgage fiasco and the funny money of the last decade, that's certainly an objective all of us can heartily agree with.
The American Dream is in need of repair.
The good news is that with one exception the President's State of the Union Address did outlined some useful steps that could be taken to help boost the economic recovery.
Naturally though, I think the details could use a little tweaking!
The Worthy Goals in the State of the Union AddressTo start off with, the President outlined his primary strategy to help bring manufacturing jobs back to the United States. That's an entirely worthy objective.
What's more, this goal actually has a decent chance of being met--- at least partially.
Chinese manufacturing costs have been rising rapidly over last few years, since its workforce is now demanding a larger share of the profits in the country's new found prosperity.
Also the President was correct when he claimed that there are several intrinsic advantages to manufacturing here in the states. As a result, the cost equation has been swinging pretty rapidly in favor of bringing manufacturing jobs back home.
His example of the Master Lock plant in Milwaukee running at full capacity for the first time in fifteen years is just part of a greater trend.
The President's proposal to lower corporate tax rates, while eliminating the loopholes that allow companies like General Electric to pay almost no U.S. taxes, will also undoubtedly help to bring even more manufacturing jobs back home.
Not only is this sensible, the President's proposal is politically clever as well.
After all, it's always pretty smart to call for something already starting to happen. That way your success is almost guaranteed!
Unfortunately, some of the President's other ideas were less satisfying...
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State of the Union Excerpts Outline Speech Focused on Income Inequality, Job Creation
State of the Union: How to Profit From President Obama's New Clean Energy Challenge
In last week's State of the Union address, U.S. President Barack Obama issued a national challenge: Take the 11.5% of the U.S. electricity that emanates from clean-energy sources and boost it to 80% by 2035.
As with any game-changing direction - landing a man on the moon in a decade, bringing an end to the Cold War, curing cancer, or weaning our economy off of coal and crude oil - leaders such as President Obama provide the enticement.
But the market has to figure out how to get it done.
State of the Union: Why You Should Fear America's "Sputnik Moment"
In his State of the Union Address yesterday (Tuesday) evening, U.S. President Barack Obama said the United States is experiencing another "Sputnik moment."
For a free marketer like myself, that's deeply depressing rhetoric: It reflects the reality that President Obama believes that this crisis - like others that came before it - is best solved by still more government action.
In short, while President Obama employed the language of bi-partisanship, the picture he painted was that of Big Government digging in. Just like at the time of Sputnik.
To understand why you should fear this rhetoric, please read on...