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Describe Issue in American Government and Politics (Research Paper Sample)
To discus some of the issues affecting American governance systemsource..
Issue in American Government and Politics
Teddy. O. Stephen
15th June 2015
Issue in American Government and Politics
The American government has been faced with multiple political and economic issues lately. President Obama is working to build a country and economy in which hard work is rewarded, fairness is valued and where each and every individual is held accountable for what they do. For all the states throughout the country this year, there is a common theme: a climate of uncertainty on the major issues that are facing the country currently CITATION And08 \l 1033 (Andrea, 2008). Although the government is currently facing the economic and political challenges with a bold and comprehensive plan, there are still very sensitive and critical issues that is greatly affecting the American population that should be handled with the seriousness that they deserve. We cannot dispute the fact that the country is experiencing more economic and political problems. However, some of this problems are more vital and comprehensive than others. In this essay, we shall focus mostly on the three major issues that are currently forming the headlines in the country which include: health care, minimum wage and immigration.
Minimum Wage Laws
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to comply with minimum wage laws of the state which might set the minimum wage rates higher than the federal rate. Currently, forty five states have their own minimum wages, of which eighteen of this state have their minimum wage higher than the federal minimum of about seven dollars. Only five of this state do not have their own minimum wage and rely upon FLSA CITATION Jam13 \l 1033 (James, 2013).
The efforts by President Obama to raise the federal minimum wage to $9 per hour seems to be bearing no fruit. Most Politian have held on to different opinions regarding the pending decision by the government to increase the minimum wage. Most critics believe that the idea held by most Americans that increasing the minimum wage is socially beneficial, is just a delusion. It is a short sited belief and ignores the reality. It is argued that workers who retain their jobs, as a result of an increased wage bill, are made better but only at the expense of unskilled, mostly young, workers who either cannot find a job at that legal minimum wage or in a worst case scenario lose their jobs CITATION Dav12 \l 1033 (David & Hall, 2012). A higher minimum wage attracts new entrance but does not always guarantee them a job. For instant if the minimum wage exceeds the prevailing market wage, some workers may have their hours cut or lose their jobs all together. There is proven evidence that a ten percent increase in the minimum wage always results to about three percent decrease in employment of workers who are low skilled CITATION Jam13 \l 1033 (James, 2013).
Despite the use of different models to understand the effects of minimum wages, all analyst have come to the agreement that business and corporates will have to adapt to the higher labor cost after a minimum wage increase. The high cost of labor caused by an increased minimum wage will in the long run be passed on to someone, the only question is who will that be? The fact that policy makers need to understand is that their decision to increase the minimum wage is not cost free, someone will have to pay for it. The higher the minimum wage relative to the competitive market wage level, the higher the level of employment loss CITATION Jam13 \l 1033 (James, 2013).
Although this decision has been received with much critic, raising the minimum wage still has its own advantages. One major advantages of raising the minimum wage is reduction of poverty. According to various findings, raising the minimum wage will reduce the level of poverty. Economic estimates state that if the country can raise the minimum wage to ten dollars per hour, the poverty level for non-elderly Americans will be reduced to fifteen percent from the current eighteen percent. This will draw about seven million Americans out of poverty CITATION Jam13 \l 1033 (James, 2013). Raising the minimum wage will have an overall positive economic effect apart from just lowering the poverty level. Economic analysis have pointed out that raising the minimum wage does not cause unemployment as claimed by most critics, instead it boost the countries productivity and at the same time address the growing concern of the rising income inequality in America CITATION Dav12 \l 1033 (David & Hall, 2012). It is important to note that the proposed increase in minimum wage is consistent with what the American economy can provide. While the value of the minimum wage has been lost in the inflation adjusted dollar, the overall American economy has grown considerably. Between the year 1968 and 2013, the country’s gross domestic product grew by an inflation adjusted 254 percent, from $4.6 trillion to 15.8 trillion CITATION Dav12 \l 1033 (David & Hall, 2012).
A common position in the fight for universal health care is to make the claim that the current health care system in America is, in its current state, a big failure. While the American government spent quite a lot in health care than any other developed nation, its life expectance and infant mortality rate is comparable to all the other developed nations. Presently, close to sixteen percent of the American population lack health insurance CITATION Nia09 \l 1033 (Niall & Cafarella, 2009). It is evident that most Americans do not get the care they need despite the fact that the government spent a lot of money per person on this issue than any other developed nation in the world. Preventive care is highly under-utilized, which results to more spending on advanced and complex diseases. Patients suffering from chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart diseases and hypertension often do not receive the effective and proven treatment such as self-management services and therapy to help them to manage their condition CITATION Sus15 \l 1033 (Susan, 2015). Research and studies have reported that about fifty percent of Americans believe that the current health care system require fundamental change, while thirty nine percent believe that the system need a complete change. Fifty nine percent of the American population believe that reducing health care cost be the first priority for congress and president Obama administration CITATION Sus15 \l 1033 (Susan, 2015).
In the year 2007, the spending on health care was $2.4 trillion which was about seventeen percent of the gross domestic product CITATION Nia09 \l 1033 (Niall & Cafarella, 2009). Although politicians want to control the cost of health care, they cannot agree on how to stem the tide of out lays or the increased cost of insurance. Some of them hold onto the hope than market completion will solve everything. The flip side of controlling cost is controlling demands. If Americans practiced a life style that is healthy in terms of diet and exercise, the health care cost would decrease as the demand on health care would decrease. However, most Americans still do not adhere to this practices. The proposed health care plan for Obama “strengthen employer coverage, make the insurance company accountable and ensure patient choice of doctor and care system without government interference.” What this proposal suggest is that if an individual likes his current health insurance, he or she can keep it. However, if one doesn’t have a health insurance, he or she will need to choose a health a health insurance that is managed by National Health Insurance Exchange CITATION Sus15 \l 1033 (Susan, 2015).
Many people, however, believe that the modern medical industry is successful, and that success is based on the competition and a consumer choice. They argue that making health care universal would threaten this democratic, capitalist sensibility. Also, universal healthcare critics state the argument that medical care are universally accessible , then people would request the same kind of universal access to food, shelter and water, and higher education which will in turn destroy the work ethic of America and the capitalist system that has been the foundation of the country since its establishment. The reforms in health care is still in its tender age and before all the plans stabilize it will take some time CITATION Nia09 \l 1033 (Niall & Cafarella, 2009).
Immigration into the United States fluctuated throughout the 20th century due to various economic conditions. However, what increased the number of immigrants allowed into the country was the Immigration refo...
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