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Klein's view is much closer to what I have thought about the public option. It will all depend upon the risk adjustment. They manage to do that fairly well in Europe, so we should be able to do it also. I have always thought that the public option plan will cost very close to what private insurance costs. The difference will lie in actually being able to get insurance if you are self-employed or have a pre-existing condition.

On risk adjustment, why not just use the insurance companies' own risk tables? Difficult to complain about that I would think.

Steve

the margarine revelation? God, that was hilarious!

It sounds like the "nightmare scenario," according to Ezra Klein, is that public insurance pays for a lot of health care for relatively sick people. I find it hard to believe that this won't be popular with the people who benefit from it and their friends and relatives. And yet, he focuses only on containing costs, as if that's all that matters for this program to be popular.

If the usual way of cutting costs (by denying health care) is taken away, wouldn't that spur more innovation in other ways of cutting costs?

#6. That was great. Very sweet how he worked Yana in.

The Request for Requests and the Wunderkind posts were dead on.

Hope the person behind it can keep it up (it was a sad day when The Bruni Digest stopped...).

What was hilarious in the Drum link was so many of the commenters were trying to discount the idea that spending in California had exploded in the last 12 years by claiming that some types of spending shouldn't count. The simple fact was that spending outstripped revenue growth. Really, what else did you need to know?

The Jeopardy clip is hilarious and sad. The expressions on the contestants' faces were great.

The spoof is one of the funniest things I have ever seen on the web. I especially enjoyed, on the meatballs post, "I’ve been at this for six years and nobody has yet figured out that this blog is a cry for help."

If you
(1) adjust for inflation,
and
(2) count tax cuts as tax cuts rather than as spending increases (?!?!? Don't know why people were cheating this way)
and
(3) look at spending *per capita* -- in other words, adjust for population growth,

Then California state spending has in fact declined, year over year, for several years.

Regarding "Economists" category on Jeopardy.
Seriously, those were pretty easy. Put three reasonably intelligent people in a room and they ought to be able to answer. How many Scottish economists spring to mind aside from Smith (okay, maybe Mill)? After that, they can't put Reagan + supply-side + "curve" together for Laffer?And it would be the ultimate irony if a central bank's chairman did anything called "Free to Choose."

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