New Book Release

Congressional Malpractice: Is Access to Affordable Healthcare A Right or A Privilege?

By Leonard Zwelling, M.D., M.B.A.
Contributing Author, Marianne L. Ehrlich
Forward by Retired U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D.

Published by John M. Hardy Publishing, Houston Texas
ISBN: 978-1-946182-01-2
Release date: 1 March 2018

The Latest From Dr. Leonard Zwelling:

The True Cost Of Climate Change

Bjorn Lomborg has been writing a series of opinion pieces in The Wall Street Journal on climate change. His latest from November 11 (see above) discusses the cost of doing something about climate change and the cost of not doing something. His argument is that there is a balance between these two and the goal ought to be to optimize (i.e., minimize) the amount society spends on dealing with global warming.

He makes good sense. There’s an opportunity cost to almost everything. There’s the cost of doing and the cost of not doing. Lomborg presents a graph derived by Nobel laureate William Nordhaus that plots the delicate balance we should be striving for in spending on battling climate change vs. the amount climate change is costing us.

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Conflicts Over Testimony

At about 2 PM on Friday November 5, The New York Times web site posted that the previous decision by the University of Florida to prohibit three professors from testifying for the plaintiffs in a law suit where the state of Florida is the defendant had been reversed. The three–Daniel A. Smith, Michael McDonald and Sharon D. Wright Austin—can testify and be paid to do so, as is usually the case when academics testify in court as long as they do so on their own time. Why does this matter?

The question at hand is what happens when a state is a defendant and professors from that state’s university are testifying against the state? Are the professors caught in a conflict of interest between the people paying their salaries against whom they are testifying and their own freedom of speech?

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Credentials

In a small insert on the Opinion page of The Wall Street Journal on October 27, Thomas Bonnett describes the arc of his career. He went into the work force right out of high school. He began with blue collar jobs eventually switching to the white collar track where he applied the people skills he learned in his blue collar jobs. After twenty years in administration, he became an executive making more money than many of his heavily degreed colleagues.

Mr. Bonnett writes that such a career trajectory would be unlikely now. Even the most menial jobs in a large corporation require college and advanced degrees, but not necessarily true skills as he points out college seems not to teach writing or reliability.

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Baloney

Daniel Henninger wrote in The Wall Street Journal on October 14 about manufactured realities and their prevalence in today’s world of on-line memes and Twitter truths.

He starts by noting that Joe Biden is trying to convince us that his Build Back Better plan with a current price tag of near $2 trillion will actually “cost nothing.” Nancy Pelosi managed to echo this sentiment by holding up her hands like a zero.

This is all nonsense of course.

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How To Lose

On Tuesday evening, November 2, the Houston Astros lost their chance to vindicate their tainted 2017 World Series victory. In that year, they were accused of cheating by sign stealing. Undoubtedly, for the remaining history of baseball, that World Series win will be in question. The 2017 Astros were not the 1919 Black Sox of their day, but close. Thus, all of us Astro fans were hoping that a victory in this year’s World Series would go a long way toward ending the recriminations about the 2017 season. Alas, it was not to be. The Houston bats forgot to show up and the Atlanta Braves won in six games. It is likely that the veteran Houston infield of Bregman, Correa, Altuve and Gurriel may never play together again. They have the record for most post season games as a four-man unit. Carlos Correa’s contract is up and it’s likely some other team will make him an offer he can’t refuse. This loss was bitter, but the Astros held their heads up and lost with dignity.

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Speaking Woke

In a front page article in The New York Times on November 1, Amy Harmon does a great job of getting all of us unwoke to wake up by describing the language being used on the left to describe individuals in groups that have historically been excluded, or at least that’s what it seems she is trying to say. I learned about groups I had never heard of in her piece. Here are a few.

BIPOC means Black, Indigenous, or other person of color.

Latinx refers to people o Latin American descent exclusive of their sexual proclivities or gender identity. That’s what the x means.

Birthing parent or pregnant people so as not to discriminate against trans people.

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What I Think Happened And Why

I am getting some questions with regard to the results of Tuesday, November 2’s elections.  Many can be answered in Bret Stephens piece in The New York Times on November 4.

The two races of major consequence, the gubernatorial races in Virginia and New Jersey, were most revealing as this blog had said they might be.

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Follow Up On Cancel Culture

On October 25 I wrote about a professor at the University of Chicago who was cancelled by MIT from delivering a talk there. His name is Dorian Abbot and he has an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal on October 30. He explains the position that got him into difficulty.

Essentially it can be summed up in a single phrase, the respect of the individual in all aspects of human endeavors, but especially in academia.

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Turnout

As Michelle Cottle notes in The New York Times on October 29, the Virginia governor’s race is giving us a preview of what to expect in 2022 and 2024 when it comes to electoral politics. In that race, former Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe is running against a Trump clone named Glenn Youngkin. McAuliffe was not allowed to succeed himself by Virginia law so this is his second run, but not in a row.

Virginia has become a reliably blue state of late, but the polls show the two candidates running neck and neck. Why?

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