First watch: One child left behind, Obamacare cure diseased, $704 in holiday gifts

McClatchy Washington BureauNovember 15, 2013 


The polluted village of Nanmen, outside Shanghai, is still home to many families and young children. Some families have left the village but other are stuck here because they can not afford the high cost of housing in the Shanghai suburbs.

BRITTANY HORN — Penn State University/MCT

One child left behind. China's state media says the country is loosening its decades-old one-child policy that prohibited parents from overpopulating by having two offspring. Now, adults without siblings will be allowed to have two kids of their own.

The cure may be worse than the disease, say health insurance analysts of the "fix" announced Thursday by President Obama. The administration will allow insurance companies to extend non-compliant individual plans for a year to fulfill a promise that individuals could keep coverage they like. But that may cause costs to rise and the quality care to be less accessible. Republicans are drafting their own alternative.

Americans expect to spend an average of $704 each on holiday gifts this year, which sounds like a lot to me. But it's $82 less than shoppers predicted they'd spend a month ago, according to Gallup. In related news, the PlayStation4 arrives in stores today. If search results are an indicator, the iPad Air may be the most popular tech toy for adults this December.

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