Hey Guys! Let’s Reinvent The Wheel! VA edition

GOP leaders, whistle-blower join in calls to privatize veterans’ care The idea of privatization has gained steam since allegations of a wait-list at a VA facility in Phoenix were exposed last month, but the concept has been posed for years by conservative lawmakers, including Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., in 2008 and GOP presidential nominee Mitt […]

Piketty’s monetary mysticism

Check out Robert Solow’s TNR book review, ‘Thomas Piketty Is Right Everything you need to know about ‘Capital in the Twenty-First Century’. This part intrigued me. “Since comparisons over vast stretches of time and space are the essence, there is a problem about finding comparable units in which to measure total wealth or capital in, […]

Secretly, everybody loves the trillion dollar coin

Ryan J. Reilly has an interesting article up at Huffington Post. WASHINGTON — The Obama administration was serious enough about manufacturing a high-value platinum coin to avert a congressional fight over the debt ceiling that it had its top lawyers draw up a memo laying out the legal case for such a move, The Huffington […]

Former Mint Dir. Philip Diehl explains the Coin to Ezra Klein

(hoisted from comments) ———– Here’s the text of an email I just sent to Ezra Klein commenting on an interview with former Treasury chief of staff Mark Patterson that was published on his blog yesterday afternoon. Dear Ezra, Your interview with Mark Patterson was interesting, especially the part about the viability of the coin. Here […]

Learned helplessness and the debt ceiling

“When young, [circus elephants] are attached by heavy chains to large stakes driven deep into the ground. They pull and yank and strain and struggle, but the chain is too strong, the stake too rooted. One day they give up, having learned that they cannot pull free, and from that day forward they can be […]