The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics released a report showing the shifts in our economy away from manufacturing to retail and then away from retail to healthcare and social services over the last 3 decades.

Click for interactive map

Click for interactive map

In 1990, the manufacturing industry was the leading employer in most U.S. states, followed by retail trade. In 2003, retail trade was the leading employer in a majority of states. By 2013, health care and social assistance was the dominant industry in 34 states. – U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics

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Finally. The GDP grew by 4% in the second quarter of this year. That is healthy growth. However, the GDP shrank by 2.1% in the first quarter, so this may just be an adjustment as we “catch up” from last quarter. We’ll see.

President Obama has announced that he will bypass Congress and use executive action to unilaterally “fix” the immigration crisis. Most likely, the President will order a broad amnesty for those illegal immigrants already in this country. It is doubtful that he will also do what most Republicans want in any immigration fix and secure the border. Aside from the Constitutional questions such unilateral action would raise, the real question is whether such amnesty is in the best interests of U.S. Citizens and our country as a whole.

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WSJ’s Kim Strassel has an excellent analysis of how IRS rule making created legal problems like Halbig v. Burwell.

To summarize: The IRS (famed for nitpicking and prosecuting the tax law), chose to authorize hundreds of billions of illegal subsidies without having performed a smidgen of legal due diligence, and did so at the direction of political taskmasters. The agency’s actions provided aid and comfort to elected Democrats, even as it disenfranchised millions of Americans who voted in their states to reject state-run exchanges. And Treasury knows how ugly this looks, which is why it initially stonewalled Congress in its investigation—at first refusing to give documents to investigators, and redacting large portions of the information.

Read Strassel’s full article here.

We need to measure success by results. – Congressman Paul Ryan, 2014

Republicans are often criticized for “not having a plan” as an alternative to the big-government, deficit growing programs they don’t like. But Congressman Paul Ryan (R, Wisconsin) always has an alternative plan, at least when it comes to fiscal matters. (He should. He is the chairman of the House Budget Committee. It’s his job to have a plan.)

Congressman Ryan’s assessment of poverty in America is correct. Poverty has gotten worse over the last two decades and is getting worse by the year. His plan is a simple approach he calls the Opportunity Grant. Ryan provides a short explanation of the plan here.

Ryan is not the only Republican addressing poverty. Senator Marco Rubio (R, Florida) has ideas for combating poverty, as does Senator Rand Paul(R, Kentucky).

Would any of these plans eliminate poverty in the US. Of course not. Poverty is systemic in our society, and must be dealt with systematically over time. But Ryan and Rubio and Paul are not afraid to discuss poverty and consider new ideas to combat it. And as a nation, we shouldn’t be afraid to do so either.

Read more on the history of welfare in the US.