Best of the Week: August 22-28, 2010

10. Balanced Budget Amendment a “Phony” Deficit Solution — Bruce Bartlett
9. What About Germany? and Angela and the Fifty Hoovers — Paul Krugman
8. Why Small Businesses Aren’t Hiring — Scott Shane, Young Firms, Not Small Ones, Are the Engines of Job Growth — John C. Haltiwanger, Ron S. Jarmin, & Javier Miranda, and Misrepresenting the Bush Tax Cuts, or the Return of Death Panels — Howard Gleckman
7. A Filibuster Fix — Norman Ornstein
6. Matters to Consider Before Launching Another War — Gary Hart and Two Minutes to Midnight? — Tony Karon
5. Petraeus’ Dubious Strategy in Afghanistan — Christopher Layne
4. The Taylor Rule and the “Bond Bubble” — Paul Krugman
3. Dear Rev. Graham: Obama Was Not Born a Muslim and Neither Is Anyone Else — Juan Cole and The Ground Zero Mosque and Cognitive Biases — William Easterly
2. The Surveillance State Thrives on Fear — Glenn Greenwald
1. Iraq Special Report: “American Soldiers Sacrificed a Lot. But We Sacrificed More.” — Jonathan Steele and Obama Plays Down Plan for Post-2011 Iraq Troop Presence — Gareth Porter
BONUS:  Sigmoidoscomy: The Colonoscopy’s Cheaper, Equally Effective Predecessor — Jason Shafrin

Why It Is a Rising and Not a Setting Sun

“But now at length I have the happiness to know that it is a rising and not a setting sun.” — Benjamin Franklin

It is a good morning. We haven’t had enough of those in this country in the past decade.

hat tip: Kevin Drum
hat tip: Kevin Drum

Last night, Congress approved the health care bill.

University of Rome Tor Vergata economist Robert Waldmann cried tears of joy. George Mason University economist Don Boudreaux wanted to vomit.

Okay, not everybody is happy this morning. For my less-enthused readers, I thought I’d post a special edition in our “What to Read” series. Herewith, I reproduce the best articles, columns, essays, and posts that I’ve read on the health care debate since I started this blog. But first, I want to second Steve Coll’s motion to celebrate one journalist in particular:

If you, like me, are uplifted by the historical potential of Sunday’s vote, then the best way to sit still inside what has happened is to scroll back through Ezra Klein’s blog. If you haven’t been reading Klein throughout the health care reform debate, you’ve missed one of the inspiring examples of how new forms of journalism in the hands of a new generation of journalists (who don’t always admire, but don’t always disrespect, the example of the generation before them) can produce vital new work. Klein is an example of a policy wonk in possession of both passionate opinion and scientific method who put himself into position to cover the dull-but-important story of a lifetime.

Coll has inspired me to create a new tradition for this blog: a “Journalist of the Year” award. With a little backdating, we are proud to honor Ezra Klein with the 2009 Trading 8s “Journalist of the Year” Award.

And now, everything you need to know about the health care bill, including many fine posts by our first annual Journalist of the Year:   Continue reading “Why It Is a Rising and Not a Setting Sun”

Best of the Week: March 14-20, 2010

10. Why Fritz Hollings Is Wrong About Economists — David K. Levine
9. Washout for the Anbar Awakening — Marc Lynch and Followers of Sadr Emerge Stronger After Iraq Elections — Anthony Shadid
8. Unhappy Yemen — Tariq Ali
7. People Vote for Competence Not Policy — Adrian Hamilton, What Failure Would Cost the Democrats — Norman Ornstein & Thomas MannMcConnell Strategy Shuns Bipartisanship — Carl Hulse & Adam Nagourney, and What Happened in Massachusetts — Stephen Asolabehere & Charles Stewart III
6. Global Cooling Bites the Dust: Hottest January Followed by Second Hottest February. Now March Is Busting Out. — Joseph RommGlobal Boiling: Freak Storms on Every Continent — Joseph Romm, and NASA: “It Is Nearly Certain That a New Record 12-Month Global Temperature Will Be Set in 2010” — Joseph Romm
5. Lehman’s Demise, Dissected — William D. CohanCurbing Risk on Wall Street — Oliver Hart & Luigi Zingales, How Bank Credit-Market Funding Helped Spread the Global Crisis — Claudio Raddatz, and How Chris Dodd’s FinReg Proposal Solves the Problem of Information, but Not of Regulators — Ezra Klein
4. Is the U.S. “Offer” to Iran on Medical Isotopes a Pretext for More Coercive Action? — Flynt Leverett & Hillary Mann Leverett and Rafsanjani Makes His Move — Geneive Abdo
3. Is the Bible More Violent Than the Quran? — Barbara Bradley Hagerty and Lenten Thoughts — Gary Wills
2. Health Reform: What Happens When? — Austin Frakt and A Viewer’s Guide to This Weekend — Sarah Binder
1. As Things Get Worse in Pakistan, the Optimism Continues to Soar — Robert FiskPakistan to America: What Have You Done for Us Lately? — Arif Rafiq, Into the Terrifying World of Pakistan’s “Disappeared” — Robert Fisk, and Don’t Forget India — Nikolas K. Gvosdev
BONUS: Square Dancing — Steven Strogatz and Financial Imagineering — Steven E. Landsburg

Best of the Week: January 31 – February 6, 2010

11. Is “the Process” Driving Opinion about Health Care? — John Sides and Policy Compromise Is Easy. Political Compromise Is Impossible. — Ezra Klein
10. Hottest January in UAH Satellite Record — Joseph Romm and Groundhog Decade: We’re Stuck in a Bad Movie, Where It’s Always the Hottest Decade on Record — Joseph Romm
9. Iran, China, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization — Flynt Leverett & Hillary Mann LeverettAnalysis of Multiple Polls Find Little Evidence Iranian Public Sees Government as Illegitimate — World Public Opinion, and Regime Change in Iran Will Come from the Centre — Tony Karon
8. With Raw Recruits, Afghan Police Buildup Falters — Rod Nordland, U.S., Karzai Clash on Unconditional Talks with Taliban — Gareth Porter, Peace Talks May Follow Ex-Taliban Mediators’ Plan — Gareth Porter, Taliban Take on the U.S.’s Surge — Syed Saleem Shahzad, How to End the War in Afghanistan — Ahmed Rashid, Not for Sale — Ron Moreau, and A Look at America’s New Hope: The Afghan Tribes — Ruhullah Khapalwak & David Rohde
7. Five Myths about America’s Credit Card Debt — Robert D. Manning
6. A Very Productive Congress, Despite What the Approval Ratings Say — Norman Ornstein
5. Seeking a Safer Way to Securitization — Floyd Norris
4. All Bark, No Bite — Clay Risen
3. Finding a Better Way to Grieve — Meghan O’Rourke
2. Blair: Gaza’s Great Betrayer — Avi Shlaim
1. Eric Holder and the Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Trial — Jane Mayer and Susan Collins Spreads Central Myth about the Constitution — Glenn Greenwald
BONUS:  From Fish to Infinity — Steven Strogatz