Harold Pollack

The Price of Smoking

Over at the Incidental Economist, Don Taylor has two terrific posts (here and here) on the personal and social costs of tobacco use. Much of these posts come from a book Don helped to write called The Price of Smoking. This is an essential reference for anyone interested in tobacco control or the social costs… Read more »

Netanyahu’s Catastrophic Leadership

Saturday’s Wall Street Journal includes the headline “Netanyahu delivers rare public rebuke to U.S. President.” The papers report that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu publicly rejected the concept of 1967 borders as non-negotiable. Israeli aides were quoted to say that “Obama apparently does not understand the reality in the Mideast.” Netanyahu will address a joint… Read more »

You can’t Save Medicare by Raising Taxes.

Ezra Klein notes that one can’t save Medicare through revenue alone. Although I support selected tax increases to address Medicare costs, we must actually confront the program’s unsustainable cost growth in the coming decades. That won’t be easy from any perspective, but it must be done. Ezra quotes me as saying: “One unintentional benefit of… Read more »

What to Think About Cornel West

I never know what to think about Cornel West. He shows that one can combine an astonishing range of brilliance, erudition, and humanity with an equally astonishing range of pomposity and self-involved grandstanding. Today’s headlines provide a case in point. Chris Hedges quotes Professor West below: I think my dear brother Barack Obama has a… Read more »

Rep. Ryan’s “Mediscare” Rebuttal

I’ve been tied up with other matters. So I’ll just say “What Austin Frakt said” regarding Paul Ryan’s speech in our fair city today. Robert Costa over at National Review Online cites the following lines from Ryan’s prepared text: Our plan is to give seniors the power to deny business to inefficient providers. Their plan… Read more »