Monday Highlights

Good morning.

  1. Apparently the Wash Post is reviewing last summer’s debt negotiations.
  2. Chesterton apparently didn’t anticipate Mr Hofstadter’s Godel, Escher, Bach and his the dialogs. I defy anyone to come up with a “truth” stranger than “subjunctive TV” set to “how would that (football play) have gone if … thirteen wasn’t prime?”
  3. A challenge for the left wing spin monkeys.
  4. Free market healthcare.
  5. No silly, he won’t help pay for it because she doesn’t want him to, the primary criterion for her selection of law school was lack of coverage for contraception. A point which completely escapes people like this.
  6. And, here’s a summary of the kerfuffle.
  7.  Oddly enough my wife didn’t find this as funny as my daughters and I.
  8. Back in the day, our President speaking in Cairo talked about how much he enjoys and seeks to read history. Apparently very little of what he reads remains with him. I mean, geesh … is there anything historically correct that he asserts?
  9. Speaking of getting history wrong, here’s some of that atheist religion-hates-science getting it wrong (repeatedly) in a continuing won’t die-meme, i.e., Hypatia.
  10. This kid is very good.
  11. Global warming skeptics and the typical straw men arguments hoisted in their vicinity.

9 Responses to Monday Highlights

  1. 5.No silly, he won’t help pay for it because she doesn’t want him to, the primary criterion for her selection of law school was lack of coverage for

    I’m not quite getting this? Fluke never testified that she needed free contraceptives. She testified that not including contraceptives in health insurance put a burden on low income women as well as recounted a friend she had who lost an ovary to cysts which might have been treated with the birth control pill.

    Why exactly would her boyfriend have been obligated to buy contraceptives for all low income women or even for her friend? Is he like some multi-billionaire hedge fund chap or something?

    4.Free market healthcare.

    No it’s not possible but not for Arrows reasons. It is simply not possible because a free market carries with it an implicit toleration for losers. The free market for ipads, for example, carries with it the assumption that I may not get to enjoy one because I am unwilling or unable to part with the cost to buy one. No problem says the free market, I go without. Likewise if I refuse to buy homeowners insurance, I’m out of luck if my house burns down. But note even there the free market assumption is not absolutely allowed to hold. If I’m totally without anywhere to live because I refused to buy insurance and my house burned down, there’s probably some level of aid the state will give me even if its just a homeless shelter. There is, though, no ‘ipad’ shelter for those of us who can’t buy ipads because we spent our money elsewhere.

    But what would happen if society said that no person should be without an ipad? Well you can have a diverse range of solutions to that imperitive that range from being very non-free marketish (pick up your ipad once a year from your local society security office) to free marketish (you get a voucher which you can use at any approved ipad store to cash in for an ipad). But you’re not going to get a free market without giving up the assertion.

  2. No silly, he won’t help pay for it because she doesn’t want him to, the primary criterion for her selection of law school was lack of coverage for contraception. A point which completely escapes people like this.

    It’s stuff like this that’s kept me from commenting most days. There’s obviously no point.

  3. 3.A challenge for the left wing spin monkeys.

    Not quite sure what the challenge is (BTW, you gotta fix that link in your post). Catholic Churches were never asked to pay for contraceptives or even contraceptive coverage, in fact they got a specific exemption for it. As far as ‘voter guides’ go, the IRS ruled that there is no problem with them (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catholic_Answers#The_Voter.27s_Guides_controversy)…what else would the right want from Obama?

  4. No silly, the fact that Brandeis University doesn’t have a law school has nowhere near the explanatory power for Ms. Fluke’s decision to go to Georgetown over Brandeis than some crazed conspiracy theory positing that her boyfriend doesn’t like the gross feminist ewww cooties OR Saul Alinsky guerilla warfare destroy the Catholic Church! I mean, Occam’s Razor people. Come on.

  5. Boonton,

    It is simply not possible because a free market carries with it an implicit toleration for losers.

    We have allowances for those without food or homes. The problem is that you’ve put an unreasonably high standard for “losing” and healthcare. Not exactly morally unreasonable, just economically unreasonable, btw.

  6. Boonton,

    But what would happen if society said that no person should be without an ipad?

    You could say that society has set an impossible standard (Ramanujan did an incredible amount work with a few notebooks, a small chalkboard and chalk). Or you could say “iPad” = “tablet-like” device and note that prices for those instead of $600 range between $75 to $1200 … and let the market and your voucher=state can pony up an order of magnitude less at most (and far far less than that if it does some simple means testing).

  7. David,
    And Brandeis wouldn’t even have made the list if they did. So?

  8. We have allowances for those without food or homes. The problem is that you’ve put an unreasonably high standard for “losing” and healthcare. Not exactly morally unreasonable, just economically unreasonable, btw.

    In which case we cease to have a free market, but in the case of food the deviation from the free market isn’t very noticeable. Once you blow past producing 2000 calories of food per person of population per day the pressure of non-free market allocation doesn’t seem to be very noticeable. Likewise if Apple was making 20 ipads for every man, woman, and child on earth a ‘ipad in every home’ policy would not seem like such a big deal.

    In the US, though, our health care is currently running $8000 per person per year. That’s roughly about buying a low level, but brand new Cadillac and replacing it every 6 years. With Cadillacs we have a free market solution. If you can’t or don’t want to spend $8K per year, you don’t get one, end of story. The single mom whose unemployed gets no Cadillac, end of story. But the single mom who finds a lump in her breast, well there we say she will get someone to check her out.

    You could say that society has set an impossible standard

    I suppose you could, yet it’s really not an impossible standard. We are already probably very close to a cell phone for every person in the US….Moore’s law is still churning, ipad power for each person should be quite easy to pull off in a few more years.

    Or you could say “iPad” = “tablet-like” device and note that prices for those instead of $600 range between $75 to $1200 … and let the market and your voucher=state can pony up an order of magnitude less at most

    Newsflash, ‘voucher’ is not a magic word that makes something a ‘free market solution’. At best its only a bit more ‘free marketish’ solution.

  9. And Brandeis wouldn’t even have made the list if they did. So?

    Well, that would presumably depend on the rank of the hypothetical Brandeis University law school. Your claim that “the primary criterion for her selection of law school was lack of coverage for contraception” is one I’ve seen bandied about the various right-wing fever swamps, but as one might suspect it’s missing actual evidence to support it (not that that’s even a relevant, much less dispositive, requirement for achieving conventional wisdom status amongst blogospheric conservatives). Most of the folks repeating this, er, “claim” link to this post (or sources which ultimately trace back to it), which attributes the alleged motivation to an early interview by Fluke (but doesn’t link to the interview). And as it turns out, they’re basically (surprise!) lying about Fluke’s motivation.

    It appears that the source they’re referencing this interview, but the relevant discussion says virtually the opposite to the claim you and others are making. What Fluke reveals is that she reviewed Gtown’s health care policy prior to enrolling, found out that it didn’t cover contraception, and decided to enroll anyway because “I was absolutely not willing to compromise the quality of my education in exchange for my health care.” In other words, Fluke decided that she was not going to attend an inferior law school because the best school she was admitted to didn’t have comprehensive health care coverage–but while at the school, she was going to try and change the unjust policy (so that she wouldn’t be forced to sacrifice either). But it’s clear from that statement that her primary motivator was getting the best possible education–had she been admitted to Yale Law, she would have attended there quite gladly (assuming no geographic restrictions). The problem was that Georgetown’s policy forced her into an unjust choice — the best education or full health care — and she elected for “best education” while fighting to get both. But the claim that Fluke turned down (or would have turned down, had she been admitted) Yale or Harvard simply to pick a fight with Georgetown is entirely foundationless and absurd, and yet more evidence of conservative paranoia seeing 11-dimensional conspiracies everywhere.

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