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Category Archive: Economics

Nov 16 2013

Geithner goes to Wall Street

Timothy Geithner has, during his entire time as governor of the New York Fed and then as Treasury Secretary, been a loyal servant of Wall Street and the big banks. Neil Barofksy, in his blistering expose and insider’s view of how the financial bailout played out, showed how Geithner and the other senior executives in …

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Nov 06 2013

Now this is change we can believe in

Democratic Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa is introducing legislation that seeks to strengthen Social Security benefits while increasing revenues for it. His Strengthening Social Security Act of 2013 has the following features:

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Nov 05 2013

That’s an outrage!

Yesterday’s Plain Dealer had a story that same-sex couples legally married in another state but residing in Ohio will pay lower taxes than that paid by heterosexual couples in the same economic situation. The constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages passed back in 2004 when opposition was at its peak has now led to the delicious …

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Oct 28 2013

The (prescription) drug cartel in the US

It is no secret that many prescription drugs are extremely expensive. Much of the price is not due to the actual cost of manufacture but due to the companies that produced them seeking to recoup the costs of their research and development and marketing investment plus their profit margin. The difficult question is how to …

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Oct 20 2013

Why does Jamie Dimon still have his job?

The mega-investment bank JP Morgan Chase has been at the end of repeated bad news. It just reported its first quarterly loss in ten years. What was interesting is that this was largely due to the bank having to set aside $9.2 billion in lawyers’ fees, which gives you some idea of the extent of …

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Oct 18 2013

Update on the debt ceiling

For those keeping score, the US government yesterday officially went past the old debt ceiling limit of $16,699,421,095,673.60. As of last night it had borrowed a total of $17,027,544,000,000 or about $328 billion more than it had the previous night.

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Oct 16 2013

The ‘Grand Bargain’ hoax

If the debt ceiling is raised and the government is opened, get ready for more talk of the need for a ‘Grand Bargain’ to cut spending on earned benefits (I refuse to call them by the common but misleading name of entitlements) and other programs that benefit the less well-off in order to rescue the …

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Oct 15 2013

The high cost of cheap food

Hamilton Nolan points to two reports that say that we are all basically subsidizing the fast food industry corporations to the tune of about $7 billion per year. McDonalds alone costs us $1.2 billion. How?

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Oct 14 2013

How the stock market rules our world

The headline on this article in today’s Washington Post says it all: “Senate leaders’ talks on shutdown, debt limit stall as sides await market’s reaction”. Apparently, the leaders in Congress are waiting to see what happens to the stock market today to see if there is a crisis that will force them to act.

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Oct 09 2013

Some debt limit trivia

Thanks to this interminable and absurd government shut down and the possible debt ceiling breach, I have learned more about the functioning of government finances that I ever thought I would. One of the interesting bits of trivia is that although I have been reporting that the current debt ceiling set on May 19, 2013 …

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