Virtually Speaking Thursday

Virtually Speaking with Jay Ackroyd 6p pacific 9p eastern

Jay and Eric Laursen discuss his book The People’s Pension: The Struggle to Defend Social Security Since Reagan.

An independent financial and political journalist, activist, and commentator, Eric Laursen began his journalistic career as a reporter for Wall Street Letter, a weekly newsletter for the financial services industry. While co-founder and managing editor of Plan Sponsor, the leading monthly magazine for North American pension executives, he became interested in the debate over Social Security.

Listen live and later on BTR:






Don’t worry, the FDA already decided they weren’t going to do anything about this:

A chemical widely used in plastic food and drink containers may narrow coronary arteries, raising the risk of heart attacks, research suggests.

High levels of bisphenol-A (BPA) in the urine were seen significantly more often in patients with severe damage to the arteries supplying blood to the heart.

Scientists analysed data from 591 participants in a UK study looking at the causes of coronary artery disease (CAD).

In all, 385 patients had severely damaged arteries, while 86 were moderately affected and 120 were healthy.

BPA levels were significantly higher in those with severe CAD compared with individuals having normal coronary arteries.

A number of previous studies have already linked the chemical to an increased risk of heart disease. The new study suggests that the specific reason for the association may be narrowing of the arteries.

Too big to jail

From NYT’s Dealbook:

…In the most telling indication yet that the MF Global investigation is winding down, federal authorities are seeking to interview the former chief of the firm, Jon S. Corzine, next month, according to the people involved in the case. Authorities hope that Mr. Corzine, who is expected to accept the invitation, will shed light on the actions of other employees at MF Global.

Those developments indicate that federal prosecutors do not expect to file criminal charges against the formerNew Jerseygovernor. Mr. Corzine has not yet received assurances that he is free from scrutiny, but two rounds of interviews with former employees and a review of thousands of documents have left prosecutors without a case against him, say the people involved in the case who spoke on the condition of anonymity…

‘Reasonable Republicans’ an extinct breed

Paul Krugman:

Several commenters have asked that I provide examples of Republicans making reasonable economic arguments; some of them seem to be saying that I’m proving my bias if I don’t provide such examples.

But it doesn’t work that way: if all Republicans are saying unreasonable things, then it’s a distortion — indeed, a form of bias — to insist that there must be reasonable Republicans.

Now, what you can quite easily find are examples of people who used to be Republicans, or even still consider themselves Republicans, saying reasonable things — say, Bruce Bartlett or David Frum. But the very fact that they’re reasonable has led to their excommunication from the movement!

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