Health Insurance Is Not Health Care

By John Lumbard, CFA. In late December movie mogul Michael Moore, writing in the NY Times, described Obamacare as “awful” and said that he’d known this all along---but didn’t want to say so because it would give comfort to the President’s “enemies”.  Maybe it’s time we stopped the hyper-partisan hyperventilating, and...
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Young In America

By John Lumbard, CFA. According to The Daily Kos, 27% of recent college graduates (ages 21 to 24) are either unemployed or underemployed.  The Democratic Underground says that recent college graduates earn $3,200 less than they did 13 years ago.  Of course, it’s not just college graduates;  low starting salaries and...
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On Tax Reform

By James Schaefer. By any measure, the tax code is too complex.  It currently totals 70,000 pages and defies both comprehension and easy compliance by mere mortals.  Collectively, Americans spend $168 billion each year in compliance costs. The latest attempt to simplify the code comes from Congressman David Camp of Michigan, who has...
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Happiness

By John Lumbard. Our economy is accelerating.  Monthly employment gains have grown from 150,000 to 200,000, and the net worth of US households has hit a new high. Dirt-poor farmers and ranchers are getting rich;  we just heard of a hardscrabble North Dakota rancher whose oil royalties are now $1.2 million...
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Another British Invasion

By James Schaefer. "[If] you have to have to gripe," says Jim Ratcliffe of Great Britain, "[it is that America] has the highest corporate taxes in the world.  They're too high in my view, [at] nearly 40%.  And that's a pity because in most other parts of the world corporate tax...
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Young In America

By John Lumbard. According to The Daily Kos, 27% of recent college graduates (ages 21 to 24) are either unemployed or underemployed.  The Democratic Underground says that recent college graduates earn $3,200 less than they did 13 years ago.  Of course, it’s not just college graduates;  low starting salaries and meager...
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(Dis)Ability

By John Lumbard. Guy walks into a bar, orders a beer, and stands there drinking it while he watches a Bruins game.  Orders another beer, and stands there drinking it . . . While he’s drinking the third one, he’s asked what he does for a living . . . . “I’ve...
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On Taxes and Growth

By James Schaefer. The U.K.'s Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, wrote an op-ed recently in the Wall Street Journal ("How Britain Returned to Growth", December 17, 2013), on Britain's changes to their tax rates and spending as a means of stimulating growth of the British economy.  The results were dramatic. They...
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Adults in the Room

By James Schaefer. At a time of partisan warfare, inside-the-beltway gridlock, and a Congressional approval rating chronically below 10%, the recent budget accord worked out by  Senator Patty Murray (D, Washington State) and Representative Paul Ryan (R, Wisconsin) is a step in the right direction, and evidence of adult leadership in...
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Motown Blues

By John Lumbard. "Addressing a lunchtime rally of more than 6,000 state workers in front of the State House Annex on Monday, [New Jersey Governor] Corzine pumped his fists and vowed to keep his pledge to increase the pension contributions. ''I will fight for you,'' Corzine told the crowd, made up...
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