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Ezra Klein: June 14, 2009 - June 20, 2009

Tab Dump

• Is Thomas Kinkade bad or evil? • Who will regulate the regulators? • How the Mayo Clinic does its thing. • Can't follow health reform without a helpful chart outlining the differences between the three draft plans! • Seriously,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 7:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Tab Dump  
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How to Get a Good CBO Score: An Interview With Sen. Ron Wyden

The last week has seen one health reform bill after another wounded by unwelcome estimates from the Congressional Budget Office. Getting a good "score" -- the term for the CBO's price tag on a piece of legislation -- turns...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 6:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Health Reform , Interviews  
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New Allies For Food Reform

I think Tom Laskawy is way too hard on the American Medical Association here. If they're saying the right things on food -- namely, that "the current US food system is highly industrialized, focusing on the production of animal...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 5:33 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Food , Health  
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Did Alan Greenspan Make a Terrible Mistake?

Brad DeLong has an excellent and thought-provoking meditation on whether Alan Greenspan made the wrong bet by keeping interest rates low in the 1990s. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Brad says, he thinks Greenspan made a terrible mistake. On Mondays, Wednesdays,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 5:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Financial Crisis , Solutions  
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Democracy and the House Health Reform Bill

To make one metapoint, the legislation previewed by the health reform committees in the House of Representatives also offers an interesting political contrast with the legislation being considered in the Senate. In particular, this is what legislation looks like from...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 4:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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The House Shows Its Hand on Health Reform

The outline of the House health-care plan -- called the "Tri-Committee" plan because it's the joint product of Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means, and Education and Labor -- is about what you'd expect and pretty close to what...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 4:02 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Dan Froomkin

A lot of you want me to comment on Dan Froomkin losing his blog here at the Washington Post. The problem is, I don't have a lot to say. The higher-ups don't consult me on personnel decisions. I don't know...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 3:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
 
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Guest Graph: The Future of Medicaid

Harold Pollack is an associate professor of public health at the University of Chicago. He's one of the smartest social policy thinkers I know, and this piece he sent in, arguing that it's time we recognized the centrality of Medicaid...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 3:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Charts and Graphs , Guest Graph  
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Will Health Care Reform Make You Healthier?

Maybe a bit. But not by much. Indeed, the main impact of health-care reform on health may be that if it could contain costs, we'd have money to spend on things that actually do make us healthier. That, at least,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 2:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Health  
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House Proposes a Value Added Tax for Health Care

Erica Werner reports that the House is open to funding health-care reform through a small value-added tax (though I find the phrasing -- "of up to 1.5 percent, or more" -- a bit confusing). Jon Cohn is pleased. I'm not,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 1:13 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Health Economics , Health Reform  
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Lunch Break: My Childhood Turns Vicious

This is brilliant. I'm particularly excited for the Cabbage Patch Kids horror movie. Funny Videos | Funny Cartoons | More Video Clips...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Lunch Break  
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The Need for a Third Stimulus

In The Economist this week, Christina Romer tells "the story of 1937." The recovery from the Depression is often described as slow because America did not return to full employment until after the outbreak of the second world war. But...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 12:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Charts and Graphs , Economic Policy  
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An Interview With Tom Daschle

Tom Daschle was almost the Obama administration's health czar before tax problems foiled his nomination. But in the months since he withdrew from the White House, he's not abandoned health care. This week, he was back in the news:...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 11:42 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Health Reform , Interviews  
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Reminder: The Senate Hates Democracy

One thing that frequently gets lost in the political debate is the difference between policies that are unpopular -- or at least controversial -- among the public and policies that are unpopular among a certain bloc of legislators. The public...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 11:02 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  Senate  
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Will Regulation Work When We Stop Wanting It?

Paul Krugman's take on the White House's financial regulation proposal is quite good, and quite clear. I'd only add that the proposal seems pretty reliant on regulator discretion. That makes perfect sense right now: The job of financial sector regulator...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 10:17 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Listen to the Polls

Yesterday's NBC/Wall Street Journal poll has both good news and bad news for health reform. Public opinion is mixed on "Barack Obama's plan" (odd, as Barack Obama doesn't currently have a plan). About a third think it's a good...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 19, 2009; 9:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
 
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The Finance Committee's "Comprehensive Incrementalism"

The outline I was given today isn't the Finance Committee's final bill. It's not even necessarily the Chairman's Mark (the bill that will go to the rest of the committee for debate, changes, and modifications). But it's the clearest...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 7:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (87)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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EXCLUSIVE: The Finance Committee's Health Reform Outline

A Senate source just passed me the latest outline of the Senate Finance Committee's health reform proposal. This is the post-CBO revision. Apparently, after the committee staff received the scores, they dug deep and quickly developed this proposal to circulate...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 5:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (30)
Categories:  Health Reform , Primary Documents  
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Gawande Speaks

Atul Gawande, demonstrating admirable but frustrating reticence, decided to avoid the interview circuit in the immediate aftermath of his tremendous article on health-care spending. But he's finally broken his silence, chatting with Terry Gross over at NPR. You can listen...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 4:44 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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Late Lunch Break

Jon Stewart explains the public health insurance plan. It's sort of like a perfect storm for this blog. The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10cHeal or No Healthedailyshow.comDaily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorJason Jones in Iran By...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 3:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Graphics! Get Your Graphics!

Laura Stanton repackages the White House's financial regulation proposal -- I really wish there were a less boring way to write that -- for visual learners....

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 3:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Paul Samuelson Is Very Much Not Dead

A couple months ago, I embarrassingly noted, in an offhand comment on my blog, that the great economist Paul Samuelson was dead. I based this conclusion off the fact that the work I was looking at was published in 1938,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 3:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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The Question of Bipartisanship

You know who wrote a smart column today? EJ Dionne. Read him. I'd put it a slightly different way, though: How many lives, and how many taxpayer dollars, is Chuck Grassley's vote worth?...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 1:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
 
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Chatty

Just finished my Post Chat where, as I mentioned earlier, Scott Armstrong of Group Health Cooperative joined me. Armstrong is president and CEO of the largest health-care cooperative in the country, and so is better placed to comment on the...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 1:10 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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The Green Lantern Theory of Financial Regulation

When evaluating the financial regulation package, it would be useful if people were a bit clearer when distinguishing between "what the administration thinks about the financial sector" and "what the administration thinks it can get through Congress." There's a...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 12:19 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Live Chat (With Special Guest Star!)

Last week's live chat was not, it turns out, a one-off. The higher-ups liked it enough that we're going to do it weekly. Every Thursday at noon eastern. Today, however, I'm adding a twist: Since co-op health plans are in...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 11:23 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Health Care Reform in Danger

Health reform is, I think it fair to say, in danger right now. The news out of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee was bad. The Congressional Budget Office had scored a partial bill and the result...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 10:49 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (47)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Your Health Care System in Graphics

I've already praised David Leonhardt's article on health care rationing. Now I want to praise the graphic that accompanied it. As the graphic suggests, there are some conditions where the American health care system does a very good job. Some...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 9:05 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Charts and Graphs , Health Reform , Health of Nations  
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The Need for Speed on Reform

I think it's safe to say that the reaction to the White House's financial regulatory reform proposal was cautiously positive. It's not the root-and-branch restructuring that some wanted. But it covers the basics (leverage, systemic risk, derivatives) and offers a...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 18, 2009; 7:03 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Tab Dump: Opaque Edition

• Jon Cohn is right about this. It's time for some moderate panic about health-care reform. • And Paul Krugman is right about this. • And Anush Kapadia is smart to write this. • Howard Baker, Bob Dole, and Tom...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 6:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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A Rational Look At Rationing

If I were giving members of Congress a homework packet on health reform, David Leonhardt's column on rationing would be at the front of it. There'd be a worksheet on it. And, when they got back to their desks, a...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 5:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Health Reform , Health Reform For Beginners  
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Can't Follow the Acronyms Without a Program

Earlier today, Felix Salmon was complaining that the White House's regulation white paper was a bit jargon-heavy for even his tastes. Sentences like "the United States will work to implement the updated ICRG peer review process and work with partners...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 5:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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A Simple Test for the Public Plan

In general, you can figure out whether something is a public plan by asking a single question: Is it run by the public sector? If no, then it's not a public plan. Simple as that. This is another way of...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 4:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Financial Reform for the Rest of Us

All the financial experts I've spoken with today have been struck by how fully formed the consumer protections portion of the financial regulation white paper is. They were expecting a detailed plan for regulating Wall Street. But not such an...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 4:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Primary Documents: Obama on Financial Regulatory Reform

Barack Obama gave a speech this afternoon announcing his financial regulatory reform package. I've copied the text of the speech below, and bolded the bits I thought most interesting. One thing to note: The administration made a point of including...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 2:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Can't Live With Systemic Risk, Can't Live Without It

I just got off the phone with David Min, a financial-sector expert at the Center for American Progress, who drew an interesting distinction about the White House's financial regulation reform proposal. The central question animating this regulatory effort, Min said,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 2:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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The Problem With Doctors

My colleague Greg Sargent has a nice catch from the latest Gallup poll. The survey asked respondents how much they trusted various actor in the health-care debate. Doctors fared pretty well. So too did health researchers and hospitals. Obama is...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 2:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Why the Obama Administration Didn't Leave Financial Regulation to Congress

The New Republic's Noam Scheiber asked an interesting question yesterday: Why, he wondered, was Obama abandoning "Obamaism" on financial reform? The Obama White House has thus far displayed a strong preference for giving Congress a set of principles and letting...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 1:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Department of Unhelpful Press Releases

From the White House Press Office: REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT BEFORE MEETING WITH FINANCIAL REGULATORS Roosevelt Room 11:46 A.M. EDT THE PRESIDENT: We got everybody? All right, well, we're looking forward to a constructive conversation with these outstanding regulators and...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 12:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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When Markups Stop Being Polite and Start Getting Real

Things are getting a bit punchy at the HELP markup. Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) says that he's not sure who wrote the Affordable Health Choices Act but that if you put "Rube Goldberg, Karl Marx, and Ira Magaziner in a...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
 
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Jay Rockefeller and the Question of Compromise

Later today, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va,) will be introducing the Consumers Health Care Act into the Senate. The legislation has two parts: The Health Insurance Trust, which is essentially a ratings agency that will assess the quality of insurance plans...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 11:40 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Tech Support

So at about 4:30 yesterday, my computer died. it was seconds after I recorded a BloggingHeads video. I went to open Firefox, and Firefox froze. I went to force quit Firefox, and the Finder froze. I shut down the computer...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 11:18 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
 
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A Bad Start for the HELP Committee

"Rather than marking up the bill before us, I wish we could start with a real bipartisan bill that could reform health care for all Americans," says Sen. Mike Enzi. His argument has two parts: He wishes the committee were...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 11:12 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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HELP Markup on Health Care Bill

The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee is beginning negotiations over the Affordable Health Choices Act. Sen. Chris Dodd is chairing the effort, as Sen. Ted Kennedy remains too sick to attend (which means, sadly, that he is gravely,...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 10:52 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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A First Look at Financial Regulation Reform

My colleagues had a huge news break last night as they got their hands on an early copy of the government's financial regulation white paper. That's 85 pages of regulatory overhaul goodness, for those keeping track at home. You can...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 17, 2009; 10:32 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Ezra Fail

Ezra has broken two computers and is going to try to get that fixed. He'll be back tomorrow, assuming he doesn't break anything else. --His Editor...

By Terri Rupar  |  June 16, 2009; 4:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
 
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Riddle Me This: How Do You Respond to a Question Mark?

As Glenn Kessler and Jon Cohen reported this morning, we really don't know who won the Iranian election. We know that it looks like it was stolen. But it's not clear that it wasn't stolen by the candidate who was...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 3:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
 
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Health Insurance Exchanges: The Most Important, Undernoticed Part of Health Reform

If I had to choose the most important aspect of health reform, it wouldn't be the public plan. Nor would it be the individual mandate, or the employer mandate, or the employer tax exclusion, or the Medicaid expansion. It...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 3:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (26)
Categories:  Health Coverage , Health Reform , Health Reform For Beginners  
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Department of Complaints, Requests

Your many, many, many e-mails telling me how much you hated the new convention of bolded names and institutions worked. My overlords here at the Post have decided to let me drop the style. In return, I've got a favor...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 1:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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The Bright Side of the CBO Snafu

In a strange way, yesterday's chaotic and damaging miscommunication between the Congressional Budget Office and the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee is actually good news for health reform. To those of us who don't chair a relevant subcommittee and...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 1:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Lunch Break: Protests in Iran

Pretty amazing footage of street demonstrations in Iran. And make sure to watch till at least 1:19, when the Persian answer to Wayne Newton jumps on-screen....

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 12:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Lunch Break  
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Why I'm Pessimistic About Financial Regulation

I think it's a bit early to label the administration's financial regulatory reform proposals a "damp squib." This wouldn't be the first time that the run-up to a major policy announcement announcement out of the Obama White House depressed expectations...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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A Whole New Tax for Health Care?

This is a surprising nugget: Democrats on three House panels continue to meet privately to seek consensus on a single plan. Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee said they were trying to decide whether to finance coverage of...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 11:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Should We Worry About The Chinese?

Talking about the current accounts deficit in recent days, I've noticed a lot of scare-oriented commentary about the fact that the Chinese government owns a big chunk of our currency. And fair enough: It's a scary-seeming thing. But it's worth...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 11:08 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  China  
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Crisis in California

Looks like the Obama administration has rebuffed California's initial entreaties for a federal aid. According to David Cho, Brady Dennis and Karl Vick, the White House's economics team have held a series of meetings and decided that California can hold...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 10:05 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  California  
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Your World in Charts: Current Account Balances Galore Edition

There's been some talk as of late about the role that current account balances might have played in skewing the global economy and causing the current crisis. But you know what there hasn't been? a really good graph. Luckily, Martin...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 16, 2009; 9:34 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Charts and Graphs  
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The CBO's Assumptions

Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office returned a fairly devastating estimate of Sens. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Chris Dodd's (D-Conn.) Affordable Health Choices Act. According to the agency, the bill would cost a hefty trillion dollars over 10 years and extend...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 11:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Tab Dump

• Meet Zeke Emanuel, the nicest of the Emanuel brothers. • Is Barack Obama flubbing the financial fix? • Paul Krugman argues that we should stay the course on stimulus. • Speaking of which, here's a long and interesting interview...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 6:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Tab Dump  
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The Congressional Budget Office Scores Ted Kennedy's Bill And Finds Disappointing Numbers Alongside a Very Bad Idea

The Congressional Budget Office's preliminary analysis of Sen. Ted Kennedy's Affordable Health Choices Act is out. This is, remember, the liberal alternative to the Finance Committee's coming health reform bill. And it is, of course, still somewhat incomplete. But the...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 6:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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What We Miss When We Talk About Taxing Health Insurance

Lori Montgomery and Ceci Connolly had a report this morning on the tussle over efforts to tax employer-provided health benefits. In it, they draw from Elise Gould's work at the Economic Policy Institute, which sought to show that workers with...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 5:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Health Economics  
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A Prescription for a Crippling Recession

I'm not quite prepared to say that John Tamny's column on "the Flip Side of Failure" is the worst piece I've read since the onset of the recession, but it's arguably the most overblown. Tamny's thesis is pretty simple. Another...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 4:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  Economic Policy  
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Primary Documents: Obama Speaks to the American Medical Association

Barack Obama traveled to Chicago today to speak before the American Medical Association. It was a bit of a fraught appearance, as the AMA had come out against the public plan last week, putting itself in direct opposition to one...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 3:34 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
 
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Top Lining

My earlier spot on ABC's Top Line -- and my apologies for originally thinking it a CBS project -- is now up on the webs. It's even embeddable....

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 3:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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A New Spin on the "Giant Pool of Money" Theory

We've talked before about the "giant pool of money" hypothesis. This is the idea that the actual trigger for the financial crisis was that emerging economies were running huge trade surpluses because a series of currency crises had convinced them...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 3:11 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Financial Crisis , Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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California Leavin'

Back in the Great Depression, residents of drought-stricken Oklahoma famously fled to the more hospitable climes of California. According to McClatchy, though, something like the reverse of that is happening now: Residents of the deficit-stricken California are fleeing to more...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  California  
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Speed Read: Tim Geithner and Larry Summers Preview the Summer's Hottest Regulatory Initiative!

My colleagues over on the editorial page had a nice coup today as Timothy Geithner and Larry Summers published a co-bylined op-ed previewing their coming financial regulation proposal. This is the sort of thing worth reading in full, but the...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 11:38 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Financial Crisis , Financial Regulation , Solutions  
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Top Line

I'll be on CBS News' Top Line at noon eastern. This is one of those internet-only shows, so if you have some internet, you can watch it here at noon, or, in fact, at whatever time you decide to surf...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 11:34 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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Health Reform for Beginners: The Suprisingly Important, Occasionally Controversial, Dartmouth Atlas Studies

I'm not exactly sure how to convince you that this is an interesting link. It is, after all, a salvo in an ongoing methodological dispute between health-care experts. But it could be pretty important. If you were to distill...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 11:11 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Health Economics , Health Reform , Health Reform For Beginners  
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I Am an Important Fact: Predictably Irrational Edition

This comes from Peter Davis's reflections on David Kessler's new book, The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite. We economists like to believe that consumers are rational, but, when it comes to food and tobacco, we're...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 10:06 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
 
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A Few Thoughts on Iran

The evident electoral theft in Iran is obviously a bit outside the normal purview of this blog. But I feel uncomfortable ignoring it totally. This is a very big deal in very obvious ways. New Yorker writer Laura Secor's...

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 9:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Foreign Policy  
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Are Conservatives Really Worried About Cost Controls?

In many ways, I think Tyler Cowen's critique of health reform is the right one: It is certainly plausible that the final bill will include a pricey expansion of coverage paired with a speculative and uncertain set of cost controls....

By Ezra Klein  |  June 15, 2009; 8:08 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Health Reform  
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