The Rich Get Richer … Connecting the Economic, Political & Social Dots

September 29, 2015 Economics

Just a reminder. I first published this in 2006 under a my old SignalHealth label and again here in 2011. It seems to get more current every day. Certainly, there are a lot of tax “plans” being floated that confirm one of the self-reinforcing loops depicted (influencing changes in public policy to the advantage of […]

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Corporations and Government are Almost the Same, Except Corporations are Voluntary?

September 6, 2012 Corporations

In the midst of the political season and the political conventions, in which the role of corporations is an increasingly significant issue (no corporations are not people), David Burge, who blogs here as Iowahawkblog, tweets this: “Government” is just a word for things we do together. “Corporation” is just a word for things we do […]

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The Health Care System in the US is Consuming its Consumers

May 31, 2012 Economics

The Health Care Cost Institute has released a new report, but which is still another reminder of why we cannot afford the US healthcare system. Last week, we pointed to a study that showed increasing dissatisfaction and increasing prices. The 2010 HCCI Health Care Cost and Utilization Report is the first report of its kind […]

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Chronically Confident Calculations

May 29, 2012 Budget

In Bias in Government Forecasts, Jeffrey Frankel, an economist at Harvard’s Kennedy School asks the question, “Why do so many countries so often wander far off the path of fiscal responsibility?” In his the full paper at the Oxford Review of Economic Policy Frankel details how national governments (with very rare exceptions) propose consistently optimistic […]

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Usually Customer Dissatisfaction Leads to Reduced Prices

May 29, 2012 Economics

Usually customer dissatisfaction leads to reduced prices … but not always in health care. Lousy care, but the price keeps going up. Didn’t we already know that? If this isn’t evidence that there are significant distortions in the healthcare market, I don’t know what might be. And if there are significant distortions in a market, […]

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Other People’s Money

May 16, 2012 Economics

The journalist character, Melissa Tregarthen in Justin Cartwright’s, Other People’s Money: “I am a number,” she writes. “I am a statistic. I am a sacrifice on the altar of the free market. I have no power, except the power of words.” This is immediately after being given the “chop,” being laid off.

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Evidently, Some Believe That Ignorance is Better

May 10, 2012 Census

It shouldn’t be too hard to figure out where we’ll come down in this fight. With a tagline, “use the damn data,” one should probably assume that we think it’s not only important, it’s essential that we collect valid, reliable data. And it shouldn’t be a surprise that we believe that for social and economic […]

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A Nation in Decline? Commentary by Ed Luce

April 20, 2012 Economics

I’m excerpting liberally below, but you should still consider reading the original. This is a conversation that goes beyond the conventional and superficial. It’s not fun and it’s not optimistic, but if you believe that the first step required in dealing with challenges is to learn and think realistically about them, then this is worth […]

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Arithmetically Correct Lie

April 19, 2012 Data

Last week, Mitt Romney repeatedly said that women have lost 92.3% (note the precision of the “.3”) of the jobs since Obama became President. The arithmetic is correct. But there’s no need to be polite and call it “misleading.” It’s a lie, a deliberate attempt to mislead. How ironic for a guy who made so […]

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From Sustainability to Resilience?

April 2, 2012 Economics

Ali Hibbs points us to Is it Too Late for Sustainable Development? On March 2, 1972, a team of experts from MIT presented a groundbreaking report called The Limits to Growth to scientists, journalists and others assembled at the Smithsonian Castle. Released days later in book form, the study was one of the first to […]

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