Problem Set 1: Due at Start of Lecture on Wednesday September 15: Econ 1: Fall 2010: U.C. Berkeley
The Intelligent and Judicious Martin Wolf Gives the Verdict on the Obama Presidency, Mark I

Whose Idea Was It to Appoint Alan Simpson to Co-Chair Obama's Deficit Commission Again?

Oooh boy. You couldn't make this up:

Daily Kos: Simpson to disabled vets: You cost too much: Joan McCarter: Fresh off of being forgiven by the White House, Simpson has a new target.

RALEIGH, N.C.—The system that automatically awards disability benefits to some veterans because of concerns about Agent Orange seems contrary to efforts to control federal spending, the Republican co-chairman of President Barack Obama's deficit commission said Tuesday.

Former Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson's comments came a day after The Associated Press reported that diabetes has become the most frequently compensated ailment among Vietnam veterans, even though decades of research has failed to find more than a possible link between the defoliant Agent Orange and diabetes.

"The irony (is) that the veterans who saved this country are now, in a way, not helping us to save the country in this fiscal mess," said Simpson, an Army veteran who was once chairman of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee....

"It's the kind of thing that's just driving us to this $1 trillion, $400 billion deficit this year," Simpson said. "It's not that I'm an uncaring person, but common sense is the most uncommon thing in Washington."

Paying for disabled veterans as the place to economize... we cover 9 million people by spending $50 billion a year on the VHA. That's 1/8 of the cost of the Bush tax cuts. That's 1/28 of this year's federal deficit.

What a tool...