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Current Affairs

October 27, 2014

". . . Republicans might want to lose the governor's race in Illinois so it can go on illustrating the dangers of untrammeled Democratic rule"

I'd support that. As Shelley wrote:

Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!
Nothing beside remains. 
 
 

"A Mystery Bidder Offers $3 Million for 6,000 of Detroit's Worst Homes"

We can only wish the bidder the best of luck

He or she will need it.

"America's Missing Wealth"

The cost of U.S. regulation, compounded over 65 years, is quite large

(The paper referenced in the article is by one of my former colleagues and one of his Ph.D. students. A publicly accessible version of the paper is here.)

"The Real Story on How Much Obamacare Increased Coverage"

Bottom line: basically a huge amount of money and energy spent to expand Medicaid a little.

"Politicians Want You To Depend On Them For Birth Control"

David Payne at The Federalist:

This is political clarity in all its uncomfortable glory: Progressives, so long the self-appointed champions of women’s advancement, have now pledged themselves to hold women back in order to advance their own shallow goals. It is both awkward and immensely helpful, from time to time, to see certain people for who they really are, and to divine their true motivations.

We can head into election season expecting the Progressive elite to adopt an altogether baffling set of talking points: Republicans wish to hold women back by trusting them to make their own medical decisions, while Democrats want to set women free by forcing them to see a doctor in order to obtain a widely-used pharmaceutical. 

"Despite Obama's billionaire bashing, Democrats lay equal claim to 'party of rich'"

Tim Carney

While the people of Northern Virginia get rich off of stimulus, and the people of Greenwich bank their bailouts and government loan guarantees, they can sleep well at night knowing they contributed to Obama. They may still be rich, but they’re different rich.

This thought can comfort Obama, too.

See also Fred Barnes, "The Real Party of the Rich" and "The Hunter Biden Chronicles".

October 23, 2014

The president's press secretary gets creative. *Very* creative.

"The White House Says This Scientific Theory Explains Why It Isn't More Open To The Press".

The White House has a scientific explanation for why reporters aren't allowed to view President Barack Obama's interactions with campaign donors: The very act of observing an event can change the event's outcome. . . . 

"The goal of those q-and-a sessions is to foster a more candid and open dialogue where you have donors who are expressing their views," Earnest said. "I think it's the Heidenberg principle?"

Once again, I'm not making this up.

"The cable networks that draw the most partisan ads aren’t the ones you expect"

What surprised me: conservatives don't advertise much on ABC Family and Comedy Central and Liberals don't advertise much on the Golf Channel.

October 22, 2014

"Behind a NYT call to bust up Amazon"

Ira Stoll, in the New York Post, speculates on the reason for Krugman's call for antitrust action against Amazon:

It’s enough to make a cynic suspect that the Times’ panic over Amazon isn’t about online retailer’s market power or disparate treatment at all, but the fact that Amazon’s CEO owns The Washington Post, a newspaper that competes with The New York Times.

Or about the fact that the Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, reportedly has libertarian-oriented politics rather than Krugman’s statist views.

UPDATE: not to be missed is Marc Andreessen's annotation of Krugman's column.

"Obama Donor Blocks Access to Hagan Stimulus Records"

"Cronyism all the way down."

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