Thursday, May 13, 2010

Depression 2010?

Robert Samuelson:
The welfare state is today's equivalent of the gold standard. With aging societies, advanced countries have promised more benefits than their tax bases can support. Hence, high government debt. Greece is merely the canary in the coal mine. But politicians resist cutting popular benefits except under extreme pressure. It takes a crisis. Greece, again. Another unsettling parallel is the global economy. The United States' leadership since World War II is eroding before China's ascent. There's a danger now, as then, of a power vacuum. Witness the long delay in coming to Greece's aid. No one country acted decisively, even as markets grew nervous.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Yesterday's science... yet again

Doubt Is Cast on Many Reports of Food Allergies:
A new report, commissioned by the federal government, finds the field is rife with poorly done studies, misdiagnoses and tests that can give misleading results.

While there is no doubt that people can be allergic to certain foods, with reproducible responses ranging from a rash to a severe life-threatening reaction, the true incidence of food allergies is only about 8 percent for children and less than 5 percent for adults, said Dr. Marc Riedl, an author of the new paper and an allergist and immunologist at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Thanks for the help....

Jack Dunphy:
If Arizona’s new immigration law survives the many court challenges now facing it — a dubious prospect, given the Ninth Circuit’s eventual role in the process — it will take effect on July 29. And on that day, as police officers settle into their Crown Victorias, crank up the air conditioning, and drive out onto the streets of their cities and towns, they will be asking themselves, “What am I supposed to do now?”