Reblog: Mark Thoma: "EPA May use Clean Water Act to Regulate Carbon Dioxide"
Looking Back at the Past: Michael Bérubé: Health Care and Civil Rights

Four Things Worth Reading, Mostly Economics, for April 4, 2010

  1. Frakt: "Today the Boston Globe reported that thousands of Massachusetts residents are purchasing health insurance only when it is needed and dropping out and paying the relatively low penalty when it is not.... Implications for the nation’s individual mandate are obvious. But there is plenty of time to learn from Massachusetts’ experience.... I have no doubt there is some gaming going on, as there would be with any mandate. What has not yet been shown by anybody is the total size and significance of it... it can’t be all that big when about 97% of the state’s population is covered (though it depends how that figure is measured). All in all, I haven’t seen enough work on this that suggests there is a sound basis for policy. I hope somebody, somewhere can get their hands on some solid data and do some credible analysis..."
  2. M.M.: "Right-wing media figures have criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for carrying a gavel while walking to the Capitol to vote on health care reform, claiming she sought to incite Tea Party members protesting the legislation. Glenn Beck said Pelosi was "inciting" the tea partiers and "slapping them across the face," and Rush Limbaugh said Pelosi tried to "provoke" tea partiers by "carrying that big gavel" with an "excrement-eating grin on her face.""
  3. Armbruster: "Today on Fox News Sunday, Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) called for extending unemployment insurance — which is set to run out tomorrow for many Americans — to help the millions of Americans who are out of work.... The reason that so many Americans will lose their benefits tomorrow is because of GOP obstruction. Late last month, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) announced that he was blocking unanimous consent to move forward on a measure in the Senate to extend unemployment benefits — similar to what Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY) did weeks prior. However, this time, other Senate Republicans, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), are backing Coburn’s obstruction. Additionally, last month, Kyl said that unemployment benefits dissuade people from job-hunting “because people are being paid even though they’re not working.” “[C]ontinuing to pay people unemployment compensation is a disincentive for them to seek new work,” Kyl said..."