What the Piketty Errors Mean

Remember the Reinhart/Rogoff spreadsheet error? In the event that you do not, here is a summary. Those who follow debates between economists will recall that the spreadsheet error led to all kinds of excorations of Reinhart and Rogoff on the part of liberal economists, who claimed that Reinhart and Rogoff were responsible for austerity policies …

Facts Are Stubborn Things . . . As Thomas Piketty Is Beginning to Find Out

I have bought Thomas Piketty's book Capital in the Twenty-First Century, and while I have posted many an item that takes issue with the books claims and conclusions concerning wealth inequality, I do plan on reading Piketty; his book has made quite the intellectual and cultural impact, and although I know what his basic arguments are, …

Paul Krugman and the Truth Just Don’t Seem to Get Along

I won't hold my breath waiting for the New York Times to correct Paul Krugman's latest op-ed piece. But the New York Times really ought to correct Paul Krugman's latest op-ed piece. And perhaps it ought to discipline Krugman for being so cavalier with the facts, which in his op-ed, he pretends are "awkward" for the …

The Never Ending Trainwreck

If you want some reassuring news about Obamacare, you have come to the wrong blog: The president of the United States informs us that under Obamacare, we "might end up having to switch doctors." This is the part where I remind readers--as though any reminder were actually needed--that during the campaign for Obamacare, the president reassured …

Clarence Thomas Behaves Admirably at Oral Argument, Thank You Very Much

Following up on this blog post, I want to note Ilya Somin's observations of Clarence Thomas's behavior at oral argument. To be sure, one swallow does not a summer make, and the plural of "anecdote" is not "data," but I hardly imagine that the following is an exception to the rule where Justice Thomas is involved: …

Jeffrey Toobin Sinks to Expectations. Again.

No surprise for those of us familiar with his oeuvre. I suppose that the kindest thing that can be said about Toobin's latest is that he has graduated from sliming the dead to smearing the living; the latter does require more courage, after all. But despite the (exceedingly) modest uptick in bravery, Toobin's attack on Justice Clarence Thomas …

It’s Time for Another Obamacare Roundup

Short version of this post: The implementation of Obamacare still leaves much to be desired. And when I write "much," I mean it. The long version of this post follows below. First of all, let it be noted that the White House website still tells us that "You can keep your own insurance." Either the administration …

It’s Time for a Big, Giant Health Care Reform Roundup

I have been neglectful in posting about the continuing travails of Obamacare; real life demands mean less time for blogging. There is a lot of news to cover, and the news does remain bad for Obamacare fans. Let's start with what might be the next big problem for Obamacare: Obamacare’s rollout dented the Department of …

Obamacare: It’s Getting So Much Beta All the Time*

It's worth emphasizing up front that this story has to do with the Washington state exchange website, but in any event, we have yet another indication that government IT does not inspire confidence: For the second week in a row, the Washington Healthplanfinder website is down, and it's causing problems for people who are dealing with …

I Am Running Out of Ways to Say that the Implementation of Obamacare Is Still Highly Problematic

In the immediate aftermath of the disastrous rollout of HealthCare.gov, Ezra Klein was one of the few liberals willing to say that the website was a catastrophe, and that the unworkability of the website actually threatened the implementation of Obamacare as a whole. Afterwards, he dialed back his criticisms (maybe Joan Walsh had something to do …