Health

Ben Smith catches up with Chris Christie, who (not surprisingly) predicts victory and (somewhat surprisingly*) repeats what sound like White House talking points: He said he looks forward to "working with President Obama" and that Obama "is going to have a governor of New Jersey who's going to stand up for New Jersey." "What this is all about is me and Jon Corzine. You want to read something into this, that's for you to write," he said. Clearly Christie doesn't read The Corner. *--Okay, maybe not that surprising when you consider he is running in a Blue State.

With the House set to vote on a full health care reform bill as early as this week, Republican leader John Boehner has announced that the GOP leadership will introduce a formal alternative of their own. The proper response, I suppose, is "Are you kidding?" By my count, it's been more than eight months since President Obama announced that health reform would be his top domestic priority, signalling that it would be the dominant issue of 2009. Republican leaders had countless opportunities to step forward with a proposal to hold up against the Democratic approach.

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The Doctor is In

David A. Bell is the dean of faculty and Mellon Professor in the Humanities at John Hopkins University's Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. Conservative talk radio often feels like a strange alternate universe, and never more than when the guest of honor is Doctor Betsy McCaughey, who fielded respectful questions from my local Baltimore Limbaugh-wannabes for fifteen minutes this morning (they neglected to mention that her doctorate is in American History, not medicine).

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Was Creigh Deeds’s Fatal Error Being Himself? by Jason Zengerle Karzai vs. Abdullah: A Twisted Saga of Alliance and Betrayal, 30 Years in the Making by Jean MacKenzie Why Nuclear Power Has a Magical Place in the Conservative Heart by Bradford Plumer Should The World Only Speak One Language? by John McWhorter Will the Democrats Be Forced to Back Away From the Public Option?

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House Minority Leader John Boehner recently released a memo arguing, among other things, that the House Democrats' health care bill would result in "massive cuts to Medicare benefits for seniors" and "a negative impact on seniors' benefits and choices." It's nothing the Republicans haven't said before. But this time, to justify the claim, Boehner said he was relying in part on a finding finding from Factcheck.org.

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More competition among insurers isn't always a good thing. (Austin Frakt, Incidental Economist) Dealing with Medicare is usually easier (or at least less difficult) than dealing with private insurers. (Joe Paduda, Managed Care Matters) The public option won't make a huge difference. (Eric Pianin, Mary Agnes Carey, Julie Appleby, Kaiser Health News and Janet Adamy, Wall Street Journal) Obama's health care strategy: Brilliant! (Robert Pear and Sheryl Gay Stolberg, New York Times) Why we should eat dogs. And not the kind you get at the ballpark. (Jonathan Safran Foer, Wall Street Journal) 

Now Google is in. In compelling testimony to the Energy and Public Works Committee last week, the director of climate change and energy initiatives for the company's philanthropy (Google.org), Dan Reicher, mounted a powerful argument that the federal government should invest at least $15 billion a year of climate bill revenues in clean energy research and development. Declared Reicher: Putting a price on carbon, while absolutely necessary, is not sufficient to address the climate problem and importantly, will not put the U.S.

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From today's White House press briefing: Q:  President Obama, last month in Pittsburgh, said of the Afghan elections and the aftermath, "What's most important is that there's a sense of legitimacy in Afghanistan among the Afghan people for their government."  Is there a sense of legitimacy in Afghanistan among the Afghan people for the Karzai government? MR. GIBBS:  Well, I have no reason to believe there is not.

This coming Wednesday will be the 14th anniversary of the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin at a Tel Aviv rally for the Oslo peace accords. Like the initial rally itself, the memorial--scheduled for Saturday, October 31, but postponed due to what turned out to be only light rains--was to be a highly charged political event. Except that in 1995, Israel was still stirred by hopes of bringing the decades of war with the Arabs to an end. Yet, at the same time, foreboding grew that these hopes themselves constituted a trap, a mortal trap.

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Color Commentator: Rush Limbaugh’s Race Obsession, by Jonathan Chait 'Do Not Underestimate Him': Can Nick Ayers, a 27-Year-Old College Dropout, Lead the Republicans Back to Power? by Amanda Silverman Conflicts of Interest: When it Comes to Health Care, Who Does the Chamber of Commerce Really Represent? by Anthony Wright If a Philosopher Was a Fascist, Is it OK to Ban Even His Good Ideas? by Damon Linker The Biggest Health Care Challenge That Congress Still Faces, by E.J. Dionne Jr. The National Economy May Be Recovering--But What About YOUR City’s?

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