Ethics

Mike the Mad Biologist

Category archives for Ethics

There’s been a lot of excellent posts debunking Standard & Poor’s recent downgrade of U.S. debt on the merits–it is poor assessment of risk. Yes, there are substantive economic arguments against S&P’s evaluation. But S&P is also fundamentally corrupt. The Coalition of the Sane must point this out too–there is an ethical dimension here, not…

File this under ‘heartless in the heartland.’ One of the things that is so awful about the current deficit reduction fetish (well, other than at submaximal employment, increasing deficits are not a problem, so we’re keeping millions of people needlessly unemployed) is that budget cuts always fall on the most vulnerable, such as people with…

Over the weekend, The Washington Post actually committed journalism with a report about the growing income and wealth gap in the U.S. To place it in historical context, they compared two CEOs, one from the 1970s and the current CEO. Here’s the blast from the past (italics mine): It was the 1970s, and the chief…

Bill Mitchell smacks down some silliness from Peggy Noonan about the supposed looming insolvency of the U.S. (italics mine): She [Noonan] should hang her head in shame for providing further myths that will certainly agitate all the ignorant – uneducated (despite long lists of credentials) – and high blood pressure conservative types who get wound…

Peer review, the process in which scientific publication has to pass muster with critical reviewers, has a lot of problems. But a widely-cited report by McKinsey & Company consulting which claimed that Obamacare will result in one-third of companies dropping healthcare coverage for their employees is worth examining (italics mine): The predictable fallout led Democrats,…

A few years back, Dick Cavett made the following observation about the misuse of the phrase “presumption of innocence“: Cast your mind back about a dozen years to Tonya Harding. For the newly born, she was the young skater who hired a goon acquaintance to lurch out of the shadows and whack rival skater Nancy…

Last week, Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism posted a satirical letter by ‘Outis Philalithopoulos’ (Outis means ‘nobody’ in Greek) about another problem facing the economics profession–corruption of its practioners. Outis/Yves writes (italics mine): Soon after receiving tenure, it occurred to me that we were being profoundly inconsistent. While we had correctly criticized the previous mainstream…

According to Florida Republicans, these are freeloading parasites not worthy of your tax dollars (Ricardo Ramirez Buxeda/Orlando Sentinel) We typically think of budgets as boring, dry things, the charge of the green eyeshade brigade. But they are a profound statement of what we think is important, of who we fundamentally are. And Florida’s Republican Governor…

What Teachers Make

Because you can policy wonk all you want, but sometimes you need a little poetry:

Last week, The National Journal broke the story, since confirmed by other sources, that the Obama administration plans to cut billions of dollars from the LIHEAP program that subsidizes energy costs for the needy (italics mine): President Obama’s proposed 2012 budget will cut several billion dollars from the government’s energy assistance fund for poor people,…