Margy Slattery

Since breaking into the American mass market more than 50 years ago, yogurt has evolved variously with consumer tastes; it’s been dyed, sweetened, lightened, liquidized, mixed with fruit, honey, and candy, and even squeezed into portable plastic tubes. But few iterations can be said to have experienced a more meteoric rise that that of Greek yogurt. Indeed, the Greek yogurt market in the U.S.

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Americans reading the news last week may have been surprised to learn that Anders Behring Breivik—the man who has admitted to killing 76 people in twin attacks in Norway on July 22—currently faces a maximum initial sentence of just 21 years in prison. Timothy McVeigh, in contrast, was found guilty on eleven counts for killing 168 people in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, and he was executed by lethal injection in 2001.

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Morning Links

- According to a new Northeastern University study, corporate profits have seen disproportionate growth relative to workers’ wages during the recovery from the recession. - While Congress continues to debate how best to reduce the deficit, no fewer than nineteen different polls released this year have concluded that Americans support raising taxes to reduce the deficit and improve income inequality. - But how can Democrats get Republicans to raise taxes? Maybe just call them “revenue enhancement measures.”

Wednesday’s decision upholding the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act was, importantly, the first appellate ruling on the law, as well as the first not to be decided along partisan lines.

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Morning Links

- Many physicians have spoken out against the government’s plan to use “mystery shoppers” to assess medical access. But Ken Bottles, M.D., argues that a well-planned and implemented version of the program could work. - Speaking of quality of care, a recent study found that medical errors that lead to malpractice suits occur frequently not just in hospitals, but also in outpatient settings. - Meanwhile, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has released a new online directory of reports comparing quality of care among doctors and hospitals in different states.

Morning Links

- Citing low participation, Google announced Friday that it will discontinue its online personal health records service, Google Health, beginning in 2012. - Physician and health policy expert Robert Berenson outlines small steps Congress can take to cut Medicare costs now. “It’s about identifying areas where the program is being abused and going after them,” Berenson says. - Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner participated Friday in a lecture series at Dartmouth, his alma mater.

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Morning Links

- A series of studies out of the Urban Institute found that the Affordable Care Act will have generally positive effects on small businesses and their employees. - Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg explains the logic behind the graphic cigarette pack labels that the FDA introduced on Tuesday—here and here. - Howard Gleckman offers six “common-sense principles” to reform Social Security.

Morning Links

- Bruce Bartlett lays out evidence refuting the claim, recently trumpeted by Tim Pawlenty, that tax cuts pay for themselves. - Citing the “serious threat” posed by under-regulated food and medical imports, the Food and Drug Administration announced a long-term plan on Monday for greater scrutiny of foreign shipments to the U.S. - In case you missed it: A vote that would have been the first to unionize one of Target’s 1,750 U.S. stores failed on Friday in Valley Stream, New York.

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