Universal Basic Income – A Swiss Case Study

By: Saturday December 14, 2013 7:52 am

Inequality is all the rage, with even Obama resurrecting his campaign themes from 2008 to raise the issue to prominence once again. But few concrete and serious proposals are getting aired in the US or in the EU, apart from the standard – and unhelpful – ‘deregulation’, ‘welfare reform’, ‘education’ suggestions.

Heavy Metal in Latin: Arxplendida, Swiss Entry to Eurovision Song Contest

By: Thursday December 5, 2013 6:47 pm

Latin nerds and metal heads may clash in the schoolyard, but damn, they rock in combo.

Syria Watch, Sept 12 – Let’s Ask Kissinger, He Knows Everything

By: Thursday September 12, 2013 10:15 am

Ben Cardin, a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, said a vote could happen in the Senate “as early as next week” on a backdoor AUMF being crafted by John McCain’s “Gang of 8.” It would give the President the authorization to take military action if certain conditions are not met. (Don’t sleep yet.) Since members of Congress are still declaring their support/opposition to the use of military force in Congress, we’re going to keep tracking them. We’ll be updating this post with Syria news throughout the day.

Why Insurance Exchanges Won’t Work: People Don’t Like Choosing Insurance

By: Monday April 29, 2013 10:20 am

One of the big reasons I’m so pessimistic about the new health insurance exchanges created under the Affordable Care Act is the principle behind them. The idea is that everyone will be well informed dedicated shoppers who will know how to select the best plan to fit their needs, which will reduce cost for everyone. Aflac’s 2013 WorkForces Report shows how deeply misguided this assumption is in reality.

Lakeside Diner

By: Tuesday May 29, 2012 4:45 am

A variety of links to articles/interviews/speeches on current issues that may be of interest.

US Health Care Still Radically More Expensive Yet Not More Effective

By: Thursday May 3, 2012 9:50 am

The issue is not that Americans are dramatically unhealthier than the rest of the world, we actually have a relatively young population. The issue is not that we are using too much care, we use comparatively little. The problem is not that our payment model inherently makes spending higher. The simple problem is that our government, unlike almost all other first world governments, allows health care companies with incredible market power to rip off both public and private consumers. If we want to bring down costs the answer is simple, we need to adopt one of the standardized price control systems proven to be effective in the rest of the first world.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Nicholas Shaxson, Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and the Men who Stole the World

By: Saturday April 30, 2011 1:59 pm

Treasure Islands tells us that tax havens are much larger and much more destructive than most might realize, yet at the same time enjoy much more unofficial and formal support from governments in advanced economies than many of us want to believe.

It’s a Ripoff! -or- Why America Spends So Much on Health Care

By: Thursday April 28, 2011 5:37 pm

As you can see in this helpful chart from the Kaiser Family Foundation, America pays much more for health care than any other first-world country.

There are a lot of false ideas or very minor explanations that are overstated to try to justify why we pay so much.

Health Insurance Exchanges: Really Bad Idea Then, Really Bad Idea Now

By: Monday April 25, 2011 2:15 pm

Health insurance is extremely complex and people just don’t have the knowledge about how an insurance policy works and the statistical likelihood of developing medical problems to know what is the best deal for them. This task is made even more difficult by the fact that insurance companies have a huge profit incentive to make their products difficult to understand (for example, hiding the cost of care to give them the lower sticker price on the exchanges).

Mubarak’s Loot: $38 Million Found! Still Hidden? $69,962 Million

By: Sunday February 20, 2011 8:20 am

Egypt’s former president Hosni Mubarak’s looted billions — indeed, his ability to loot billions as representatives of our government scoff at activists who call such looting illegal — plays a fundamental role in our house of cards economy. And, given that we reward obedient client dictators with permission to loot their country, it plays a fundamental role in American hegemony in this world.

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Upcoming FDL Book Salons

Saturday, April 19, 2014
2:00 pm Pacific
Poison Candy: The Murderous Madam: Inside Dalia Dippolito’s Plot to Kill
Chat with Mark Ebner about his new book. Hosted by Beth Karas.

Sunday, April 20, 2014
2:00 pm Pacific
The Gulf of Tonkin Events – Fifty Years Later: A Footnote to the History of the Vietnam War
Chat with John White about his new book. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize winner Deborah J. Nelson.


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