Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Link round-up

Caught back up on my reading in recent days after a few weeks off, here are some items that caught my eye:

Speaking of Thatcher, watching coverage of her death on the BBC while out of the country was interesting. She was invariably described as "controversial" and someone who sharply divided the country with both strong supporters and detractors, yet news profiles examining her impact seemed to consist entirely of former coal workers in Sheffield.
  • So close to April Fools Day and yet not a joke: only short years after the housing bubble the Obama administration is pushing banks to make loans to people with weaker credit.
  • Both Matt Yglesias and Gene Marks says that people should stop complaining so much about airlines.  Particularly agree with Yglesias's statement that "luggage fees are great," which only the economically ignorant should oppose. That said, some airports are rather dreary and TSA is typically an absurd hassle, but neither is the fault of the people you purchased the airline ticket from.
  • Here's an impressive short video showing how potato chips get made.
  • Who likes the federal income tax system? Democrats, and no one else. A Reuters poll, meanwhile, found "Democrats with a more favorable opinion than Republicans of the federal government, at 41 percent to 13 percent." 
  • Heckuva quote from the French president, and it seems that some lower-level politicians in the country are catching on regarding the burden of rules and regulations.
  • Peter Suderman summarizes the state of play on Obamacare in a link-filled post, while Greg Mankiw educates HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as to the purpose of insurance.
  • Good point: "Capitalism is not a 'system.' It is an un-system."
  • Fighting with Portland government over a tree makes one guy consider that most radical of steps: becoming a Libertarian.

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