Monday, September 17, 2012

IRS: We will not enforce the individual mandate

What's the point of passing laws if our government won't enforce them? Last week the IRS said they don't plan on punishing people who fail to pay the penalty for not having health insurance under Obamacare. This whole policy is turning into a mess, first Obama argues that its not a tax, then the Supreme Court says its only constitutional as a tax and now that its a tax the IRS says they don't plan on enforcing it. So much for resolving the adverse selection problem.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Tanner v. United States

You learn something every day... apparently getting hammered during a trial is not "improper conduct."
The [Supreme Court] justices ruled 5-4 that the drugs and alcohol were not an improper "outside influence" and didn't constitute jury misconduct.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Teachers on strike

Some 29,000 teachers in Chicago went on strike meaning that 400,000 students aren't in school today and won't be until an agreement is reached.

The arguments for both sides sound pretty reasonable so I don't really know who to support here. In general I'm all about accountability and more power to dismiss bad or non-performing teachers. But according to Reuters 80% of CPS students qualify for free lunches because they come from low income families so I can see how teachers are worried that students are often "non-performing" for reasons far beyond what goes on in the classroom. Clearly this outcome is pretty extreme but hopefully this marks a new era for Chicago politics away from the Chicago Machine and toward something new. Financially the city is in pretty awful shape and no doubt that has an impact on businesses and people who want to call the city home.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Now this is art!

The premise is pretty incredible - the girl lays sleeping and if she awakens to the kiss then the two are legally obligated to wed.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Living on $250 a day

Article in the NYT about long term health care and what will happen to it under the Romney-Ryan budget.

I don't understand how people can expect Medicare or Medicaid to pay for this - living at $250 a day is a pretty lavish lifestyle. Before taxes you've got to be earning close to $150k to live that kind of life. Now I get it, those who need long term care are typically in pretty bad shape - if you can't bathe or feed yourself life kind of sucks. So if people or their families want to pay $250 a day themselves for this type of care then they should be free to do so. I only take issue with the fact that with regards to health care the government is handing out Porsches when Hondas will do. I hate to say it but the Republican idea makes some sense here - cut spending by a third. If the cost were $80 per day that's almost exactly in line with the lifestyle of an average American - $250 per day will bankrupt future generations. To me that sounds like a very reasonable and very fair compromise between the old and the young (and especially the unborn).