Tangled up in Blue
March 11, 2010
When Alma Dickson slipped on an icy sidewalk in Dallas, Texas, she knew she was hurt. But she wasn’t sure that she could pay for the medical care she needed. The year was 1929 and Dickson, a schoolteacher, didn’t make enough money to pay for x-rays and treatment on her own. But Dickson had recently signed up for something new: A plan under which she paid a monthly premium in exchange for a promise of care at a local Dallas hospital.
Aviation Data Suggests a Mixed-Bag of Rail Riders
February 22, 2010
Now that we’re a full week past the initial high-speed rail announcement, we’ve taken the time to resurvey some of the elements of this massive investment. Demand is one of those elements and it’s critical to projecting ridership. One method we’ve designed to measure HSR demand is corridor air travel. By offering specific boarding information, federal air data provides a stellar source of passenger travel information between any two metropolitan areas. Using the data we published back in October, here is how the corridors receiving at least $200 million stack up.
Metro Home Price Recovery: Strong, Weak, Non-existent?
December 30, 2009
Yesterday’s release of the Case-Shiller Home Price Index has economists—and probably the Obama administration—on edge. The reason: an apparent softening of demand in October, which translated into weak home price growth across the 20 markets that the index tracks. That followed stronger, more widespread price growth in the summer months. The news has stoked fears of a “double dip” in house prices and the resulting havoc it might wreak in the mortgage market. Like the economy itself, though, what you make of U.S.
The George W. Bush Presidential Library Is So … Conservative
December 07, 2009
James Gardner, formerly the architecture critic of the New York Sun, now writes on culture for several publications. To put the matter politely, presidential libraries tend not to inspire very good architecture. One generalization that can be made about the twelve libraries already in existence is that they tend to err on the side of dullness, like the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda and the Bush 41 Library in Texas.
High Speed Rail: Getting the Assumptions Right
October 20, 2009
With a just-released Brookings report suggesting that high speed rail (HSR) could mitigate excessive congestion at airports, it would be nice to know if and where rail is a viable investment.
Meanwhile on the Cable Nets
October 09, 2009
Fox and MSNBC have been airing a freeway chase in the Dallas area for the better part of the last two hours. As a friend writes: Man, those guys know what people want on a Friday afternoon.
Economic Recovery? Not So Fast!
September 10, 2009
The Federal Reserve’s latest Beige Book, released yesterday, painted a cautiously optimistic portrait of the state of the nation’s economy. The New York Times, reporting on the Beige Book, heralded a “slow and still fragile recovery” that is “taking hold across the country.” But even if the data bear out this anecdotal assessment, don’t think that a robust recovery is going to appear in your metro area anytime soon. Here’s why: In many parts of the country there are few signs of recovery. Of the 12 Federal Reserve districts, only Dallas (covering Texas and parts of Louisiana and New Mexico) re
Triumph And Tragedy
August 26, 2009
Over the past 40 years, Edward Moore Kennedy was the grand statesman of the Democratic liberalism that emerged out of the 1960s. He was a loyalist to his principles even when those principles fell completely out of fashion. He overcame personal flaws and searing travails to become a masterful legislator, congressional infighter, and builder of unlikely coalitions. Ironically, he achieved all of this only after he had surmounted the political entitlement that made his career possible in the first place.
Would A Nuclear Attack Kill You?
April 17, 2008
(Department of Energy) According to the Post, Tuesday's Senate hearing on the ever-increasing risk of nuclear terrorist attack was quite the spectacle: At the committee's request, Dallas prepared a report on the effects of a small nuclear device exploding near the White House. ... The 10-kiloton blast would release fatal doses of radiation in the immediate area and destroy almost all buildings within a half-mile radius, he said. The intense heat would burn people for many blocks and spark fires.
January 10, 2007
It was predictable. That even the faculty, or a large portion of it, at Southern Methodist University in Dallas would have qualms about having the George W. Bush Presidential Library on campus. It was obvious. Now, SMU has not actually been designated as the querulous host. Baylor University in Waco and the University of Texas, not in Austin, God forbid, but Irving are also in the running. Or maybe trying to escape. Ralph Blumenthal spins out the somewhat intricate tale in today's Times, "Faculty at S.M.U.