URLs du Jour


  • I missed this when it came out last month: Granite State Geek Guru Dean Kamen talks about health care at, of all places, Popular Mechanics. Sample:
    Each side of this debate has created the boogieman and monsters, like "We don't want let this program to come into existence because that will mean rationing." Well, I hate to tell you the news but as soon as medicine started being able to do incredible things that are very expensive, we started rationing. The reason 100 years ago everyone could afford their healthcare is because healthcare was a doctor giving you some elixir and telling you you'll be fine. And if it was a cold you would be fine. And if it turns out it was consumption; it was tuberculosis; it was lung cancer--you could still sit there. He'd give you some sympathy, and you'd die. Either way, it's pretty cheap.
    (via The Agenda.)

  • The Granite Geek, David Brooks, is overly gleeful about "three large utilities" leaving the U. S. Chamber of Commerce over its position on global warming.

    David calls the move "surprising", but it's not really. At OpenMarket, Marlo Lewis offers a tutorial on the concept of "rent-seeking". Specifically:

    So it should come as no surprise that some corporations love Waxman-Markey. Indeed, the corporate coalition known as the United States Climate Action Partnership (US CAP) outlined the main features of the Waxman-Markey bill months before it was introduced in a January 2009 report titled A Blueprint for Legislative Action. US CAP members don't worry that Waxman-Markey might destroy millions of jobs and trillions of dollars in cumulative GDP. They expect to get a bigger piece of a smaller pie.

    Lewis also quotes the CEO of one of the companies, Exelon, predicting an increase of "$700 to $750 million to Exelon's annual revenues for every $10 per metric ton (Mt) increase in the price of CO2 allowances."

    So, yeah, the companies may be "green", but only in the sense of the color of those figures above.

    Any doubt about from whom those dollar signs are coming? Hint: famous poker player Amarillo Slim is quoted as saying: "Look around the table. If you don't see a sucker, get up, because you're the sucker."

  • In our always-busy Egomania Department: Foster's Daily Democrat published my short letter to the editor. You read it here first.

  • A disaster preparedness suggestion for the University Near Here.