Bob Wright's New Electric God

A mostly political weblog.
Sept. 30 2009 4:28 AM

Bob Wright's New Electric God

The "man in charge of the [Chevy] Volt’s battery development and integration" is bailing out of General Motors "in the middle of [the Volt's] frenzied gestation." TTAC thinks it's a perverse side-effect of government intervention --with all the new federal electric car money sloshing around, and pay caps looming, it's more lucrative to be an independent "consultant." ... 5:35 P.M.

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Ben Sheffner says Gawker is "running a very risky business." Why? No libel insurance . ...  12:30 P.M.

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Bob Wright thinks the Web is the new God , in a particular sense. .... 1:37  A.M.

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Charles Lane argues that unions are now a "significant" impediment to "sensible health care reform" because of their tooth-and-nail fight against taxing "Cadillac" health plans. ... Even if you think (as I do) that the unions have a point when they argue they gave up wage increases in order to get lavish health benefits, isn't the answer to give them five years (or until their next contract negotiation) to rebalance the mix to what it would be in a world in which employer health benefits didn't go untaxed? ... If the problem for powerful unions is they no longer have quite the clout they used to have to extract wage increases in exchange for giving up "luxury" health benefits ... well, that's their problem. ...

P.S.: Lane also criticizes unions who support single payer but want to preserve their right to bargain for "supplemental" coverage.

Probably the only thing less likely to pass Congress than single-payer is single-payer with a layer of extra benefits for unions only.

Hmm. Why shouldn't unions, or anyone, be free to bargain for supplemental benefits**-- at least for more treatments or services--on top of what's available in a single payer plan (as long as those benefits are taxed)? Lane seems to imply that the idea of single payer is that the government plan would have near-monopoly status--you take what it offers, and that's it. No adding on to the system for, say, cancer drugs the government's decided not to pay for.** If that's Lane's version of single-payer, I know a woman named Betsy who'd like to talk to him. ...  1:50  A.M.

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Whatever you think of the Polanski case, this is a good hed :

Free Roman Polanski! Demand Harvey Weinstein and Woody Allen

1:51  A.M.

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