James Wimberley

A Monopoly Money Lifebelt?

Brad de Long asks for ideas on Geithner’s options on August 3rd, if the lunatics calling themselves Republicans are still blocking an increase in the debt limit. Be careful what you pray for, you might get it. So Here’s My Plan. The Bipartisan Policy Center estimates authorised expenditures at $302bn in August and incoming revenue… Read more »

Idle Thought…

Why are the negotiations about raising the debt ceiling rather than abolishing it? You would think this ridiculous loaded gun lying round the House for the children to play with was a hallowed part of the US Constitution, and not a silly recent invention contrary to its clearly stated intent. [Cross-posted at The Reality-Based Community]

These Are not the Revolutionaries you Want

Dilma Rousseff, elected President of Brazil last year as Lula’s handpicked successor, has survived her first sleaze crisis (and now the second). They won’t be the last, as sleaze has apparently become the grease that prevents the Brazilian polity, emulating the USA’s veto-rich dual separation of powers on both geographical and institutional axes, from seizing… Read more »

The Real Driver of the Trend Increase in Health Costs

The National Institutes of Health explain the fundamental driver of the trend increase in health costs much better than I could: In the past 40+ years, NIH funded research has successfully reduced the mortality and morbidity of once acute and lethal diseases and conditions by finding ways to improve treatment — even in later stages…. Read more »

In the Long Run We Are All Sick

This chart from the Kaiser Family Foundation, using OECD data, has been going the rounds of the blogs. You have probably seen it already:Growth in Total Health Expenditure Per Capita U.S. and Selected Countries, 1970-2008 A comment from Kevin Drum: The United States, of course, has the highest spending, but it also has the highest… Read more »