Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

Humana takes next step towards CEO’s “Medicare Advantage for All” gamble

I agree with Charles Gaba. Medicare Advantage is not much better than Commercial Healthcare Insurance. To wit, it is Commercial Healthcare Insurance gussied up to look like FFS Medicare. The extra benefits given to enrollees in Medicare Advantage comes from FFS Medicare expenditures. Furthermore, the companies providing healthcare to those on Medicare bid low and […]

Nobody is getting laid off, all systems are go

Jobless claims: the situation remains, ‘all system go’  – by New Deal democrat Initial jobless claims declined -2,000 last week to 190,000, while the 4 week moving average increased 1,750 to 193,000. Continuing claims, with a one week delay, increased 5,000 to 1,655,000. All of these remain excellent numbers: To repeat my meme over the […]

“Seville: public water and private interests”

David Zetland is teaching a class and he is asking for commentary, Commentary to help his Water Scarcity students by commenting on unclear analysis, alternative perspectives, better data sources, in this post or maybe just saying something nice 🙂 to them. I am sure we can do better . . . “Seville: public water, private […]

When Confronted By the Truth . . .

“Jawboning, the moral suasion in the context of economics and politics. In action such is the use of authority to persuade various entities to act in certain ways. It can sometimes be underpinned by the implicit threat of future government regulation.” President Joe Biden uses the bully pulpit during the State of the Union address to call […]

Why Do Voters Trust Republicans on the Economy More Than Democrats?

This is another inciteful commentary by “annie asks you.” Just like Josh in the movie “Big,” I am raising my hand, stating “I don’t get it.” I don’t get it as to why people would prefer trump over Biden especially after two years of a recovering economy. Maybe many of them were not around for […]

February Mfg. and January Const. Continue Negative, while Auto Sales Improve

February manufacturing and January construction continue negative, while auto sales improve  – by New Deal democrat We started out yet another month of data with bad news in two leading sectors. The ISM manufacturing index has been showing contraction since November, and its more leading new orders subindex since September. And did so again in February, […]

Water Usage Efficiency in Factory Farming and Housing

I am in Arizona these days and watching the state and local area scramble to get developments approved before the Federal Agency in charge of the Colorado River water decides who gets what. I suspect if you have an approved Build, a state will be allowed to build it. The Feds have applied the new […]

Housing prices continue to come down – like a feather

Housing prices continue to come down – like a feather  – by New Deal democrat As I’ve repeated many times in the past 10 years, in housing prices follow sales with a lag. Housing permits and starts both peaked early in 2022, and house prices followed during the summer. This morning the FHFA and Case Shiller […]

Salve Lucrum: The Existential Threat of Greed in US Health Care

The biggest driver of healthcare cost is simply “pricing” increases reflected in hospitals, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare insurance. It was Dr. Donald Berwick while head of Medicare and Medicaid during the 1st half of the Obama administration has said, repeatedly, that at least 1/3 of Medicare dollars ware wasted on unnecessary tests, procedures and drugs that […]

Durable goods orders: more deceleration, still no recession

Durable goods orders: more deceleration, still no recession  – by New Deal democrat I normally don’t pay too much attention to durable goods orders. That’s because they are very noisy. They don’t always turn down in advance of a recession (see 2007-08), although they may at least stall, and there are a number of false […]