Showing posts from May 20, 2017

Today's Trumpery


In the World's Most Expensive City, 1 in 10 Maids Sleeps in a Kitchen, Toilet, or Corner of the Living Room

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[Shocking. No comment needed; just read it. *RON*]
Joseph Hincks, Time Magazine, 18 May 2017
Six days of the week Victoria Park is a staid Hong Kong hangout: executives in lycra jog its pink paved running path, young mothers push strollers along its concourses, and the elderly stretch on municipal gym equipment. But every seventh day—Sunday is the usual day off for Hong Kong's estimated 350,000 migrant domestic workers—this wedge of old colonial green, hemmed by the shopping arcades of Causeway Bay, bursts into life.

On a recent Sunday, thousands of Indonesian women picnicked on tarp and cardboard sheets spread over the park's lawns. A band of musicians rehearsed on traditional bamboo instruments called angklung, and a troupe of East Javanese reog dancers in tiger, boar and horse costumes wheeled and whinnied at the crack of a masquerader's whip.

"It's little Java here," a white-shirted woman called Purwanti tells TIME. T…

Three-Year Impacts Of The Affordable Care Act: Improved Medical Care And Health Among Low-Income Adults

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[The uninsured rate under Obamacare dropped more than 20%. Further, "For uninsured people gaining coverage, this change was associated with a 41-percentage-point increase in having a usual source of care, a $337 reduction in annual out-of-pocket spending, significant increases in preventive health visits and glucose testing, and a 23-percentage-point increase in 'excellent' self-reported health. Among adults with chronic conditions, we found improvements in affordability of care, regular care for those conditions, medication adherence, and self-reported health." *RON*]

Benjamin D. Sommers1,*, Bethany Maylone2, Robert J. Blendon3, E. John Orav4 and Arnold M. Epstein5, Health Affairs, May 2017

+Author Affiliations
1 Benjamin D. Sommers ( is an associate professor of health policy and economics in the Department of Health Policy and Management, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, and an assistant p…

The Fallacy of Endless Economic Growth

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[What economists around the world get wrong about the future. "The idea that economic growth can continue forever on a finite planet is the unifying faith of industrial civilization." *RON*]
Christopher Ketcham, Pacific Standard Magazine, 16 May 2017

The idea that economic growth can continue forever on a finite planet is the unifying faith of industrial civilization. That it is nonsensical in the extreme, a deluded fantasy, doesn't appear to bother us. We hear the holy truth in the decrees of elected officials, in the laments of economists about flagging GDP, in the authoritative pages of opinion, in the whirligig of advertising, at the World Bank and on Wall Street, in the prospectuses of globe-spanning corporations and in the halls of the smallest small-town chambers of commerce. Growth is sacrosanct. Growth will bring jobs and income, which allow us entry into the state of grace known as affluence, which permits us to consume mo…