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Physician, devalue thyself

A physician named Jean A. Schoonover writes in today's Washington Post about the hardships faced by doctors trying to recover from debt incurred during training, calling it "Devaluation of the Doctor". After describing her and her husband's (who is also a physician) financial situation, she seeks an answer for the cause of her circumstances. Read more »

Healy on libertarian interventionism

Quote of the Day

"Why," said Cernan of the Beasts again - the god who had mocked Maugrim long ago and named him Sathain - "why was he allowed to live?"

Paul looked at him, then at the suddenly frail-seeming lios alfar. He clenched his fists. "To choose!" he cried with a certain desperation.

-from The Wandering Fire by Guy Gavriel Kay

Government auctioned cars laden with pot

The US government has been auctioning off cars containing marijuana to unsuspecting customers. Francisco Rivera and Alfonso Calderon bought one such car and were arrested by Mexican authorities and spent time in a Mexican prison.

"They turned their back on us at the moment we needed them most," says Alfonso Calderon, speaking in Spanish. "They were the ones who got us into this mess. They sold us a car loaded with drugs."

Lazio on trade

Things I liked about Rick Lazio's piece in today's NY Times:

1) He defends free trade.

2) He shows the how ridiculous the amount of subsidies is in dollar terms.

3) He gives the best solution to the problem of 'failed states' - trade, not aid.

4) He uses the word liberal properly.

Loyalist captured in Iraq

Samizdata has a report from Iraq about the capture of a Saddam Loyalist. With the constant news of US soldier deaths trickling in day after day, it's nice to hear good news for a change.

The economics of war

Micha Ghertner discusses the economics of war in relation to the Coase Theorem and game theory. When I read that someone is not 'meta-rational' enough for economic models to work, then I have to conclude that maybe the correct methodology is not being used.

Bad prescription

Bob Herbert of the NY Times writes about unemployment woes of today's economy:

The stories have been rolling in for some time about the stresses and misfortunes that are inevitably associated with long-term joblessness: the bankruptcies, foreclosures and evictions, the dreams deferred, the mental difficulties ? anxiety, depression ? the excessive drinking and abuse of drugs, the family violence. There are few things more miserable than to need a job and be unable to find one.

Junk science and junk economics

An outstanding article in the National Post by Pierre Lemieux [found via Mises Blog]: Read more »

Politically correct cookies

Speaking of political correctness, Stephen Hodgson of the new blog Unpersons ruminates on the neutering of gingerbread men. Sage of None the Wiser noticed the same thing a couple of weeks ago.

(What's interesting is that two individuals each on a different continent noticed the same phenomenon.)

More thoughts on the superintendent

I was initially very put off by what I saw as a typical failure of a public school administrator. However, after reading the opinion posted below and reading this article from the Boston Globe, I have been reconsidering things. The article states that the failure rate for initial test takers is 32% and the repeat failure rate is 83%. Read more »

A differing view of the Massachusetts superintendent

From the School Liberator mailing list:

Quite a black eye for the Lawrence MA school system, when school super, Wilfredo Laboy, flunked a required literacy test, not once, not even twice, but three times. [...]

--> Note that we said the embarrassment is not Mr. Laboy's, but the system's. Here's why...

--> Marshall Fritz writes that Mr. Laboy's case may be an occasion where we in the Alliance can rise above the fray.

Freedom vs. Liberty

In one of his typically long and well-written posts, Steven Den Beste starts from the very basics of the Founders' intentions to show why he supports gay marriage but opposes a Constitutional amendment granting it. The entire entry is worth reading, but I must take issue with a point he makes about tradeoffs of liberty. Read more »

Beck on Methodological Individualism

One of the reasons I favor the Austrian school is the rigor of the conceptual framework on which it is founded. Unfortunately, it is sometimes difficult to convey these concepts to the lay person as anyone who has read the first 200 pages of Human Action and found themselves scratching their head and wondering, "Pardon me, but what is this stuff?" can attest to. Read more »