Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Student Loans: Dems vs. GOP Made Easy

    One thing that Barack Obama has done absolutely right for education is change the student loan program. Romney and Ryan have made it clear that if elected they will switch things back to the old way. This small policy difference demonstrates the larger difference between today's Democrats and Republicans.

    Ramona's picture

    A Happening in East Liverpool

     

    East Liverpool, Ohio has long been known as the center of American dinner-and diner-ware.  For well over a century, from the mid 19th century into the middle of the 1960s, it had been the home of some 300 potteries (partial list here), and included names like American Limoges, Homer Laughlin (across the river in W. Virginia but within shouting distance), Hall, Harker, Taylor Smith Taylor, Knowles, Pearl, Purinton, Royal, Sebring,  Sterling, and Wellsville.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    UVa and Teresa Sullivan: Managing Faculty without Money

    The debacle at the University of Virginia, whose Board of Visitors hastily fired President Teresa Sullivan, has been a lesson in how business-oriented trustees can urge bad business practices.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Teresa Sullivan and UVa

    I'm out of the country right now, but even so I can't avoid the uproar over Teresa Sullivan being pushed out as President of the University of Virginia after only two years.

    Donal's picture

    Romney Won't Force You To Drive An EV

    With the same quote as Detroit News, HybridCars also suspects that Mitt Romney would be no friend to EVs:

    The Obama administration has also been a major champion for plug-in electric vehicles and hybrids. It has pushed for even higher plug-in vehicle subsidies and incentives on the supply side and consumer demand side of the equation to get the fledgling industry flying on its own. Those plus CAFE requirements – not to mention European legislation beyond the purview of the American president – are expected to be key motivation in developing more electrified automotive solutions in coming years, but Romney said he sees failure written on the EV wall already.

    The Obama-led government is, Romney said, trying to "to force a market to adopt a technology that people aren't interested in."
    Donal's picture

    Livin' Large

    With my plantar muscles feeling better, I've been running a two mile route past a few apartment complexes and through a new development of 3,000 SF single family houses—perhaps 300 of them. A sign indicates that they sell in the $500,000s, but asking prices actually range from $544,990 to $619,990. There are no full-grown trees yet, but down in the hollows are hundreds of saplings tied to stakes and protected from deer with plastic netting. Once grown they should buffer the community from the main thoroughfare. There are a few more houses complete every time I run through, a few more families settled in, a few more kids riding bikes and scooters on the sidewalks. One owner has added, or opted for, a full complement of photovoltaic panels on his South-facing roof.

    Back at home I read articles like Real Homes: Small, frugal, and green, in which, "Recent college graduate Ella Jenkins lives with her parents while she builds her 103-square-foot home in their yard."

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    Donal's picture

    Tesla and the Uncertain Middle Class

    Tesla is about to release its Model S sedan. Despite operating at a loss, despite never having turned a profit, despite being the recipient of government loans (which the right wing hates about the Volt), despite its stock price dropping due to perceived competition from the Toyota RAV4 EV, some Wall Street pundits are still bullish on Tesla.

    Why? Well it promises decent range:

    Tesla: The Time Has Come

    The Tesla Model S will give you significantly more range than a Nissan LEAF or any other practical all-electric car to date. The Nissan is EPA-certified at 73 miles on average. Tesla claims 160 miles for the base version of the Model S. ...

    Tesla will also sell you an alleged 230-mile and a 300-mile version of the Model S. Each step up is $10,000 more.
    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Why College Costs So Much, Part 2

    In my previous post about college prices, I focused on the massive state spending cuts that have driven up tuition at public school universities and also made it easier to raise private tuition, because private universities no longer face serious price competition from the public sector.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Why College Costs So Much, Part 1

    Mitt Romney recently told an aspiring college student that if he had trouble affording college, he should just shop around for the best price, which proves that Romney has no idea how college prices work:

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Rush Limbaugh & Overstock.com’s Patrick Byrne: Misogynists getting their due

    Rush Limbaugh apparently isn’t the only one paying dearly for his misogynistic ways. Overstock.com boss Patrick Byrne, who has shown himself to be a first-class misogynist himself (“So, why exactly did you become a reporter?

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Your New Year Public Domain Report: 2012

    Happy New Year, all. My spouse and I spent part of yesterday evening at our local revival house, watching a classic New Year's Eve double-feature of The Thin Man and After the Thin Man. Then we adjourned to a favorite bar for midnight; after all, that's what Nick and Nora would do.

    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Germany's Bold Plan to Rescue Europe

    As Italy and Spain go tumbling after Greece into an abyss of insolvency, Germany has at last found the will to act boldly in defense of the European Union.

    According to the New York Times, Chancellor Angela Merkel has launched a courageous effort to bail out Germany's struggling neighbors...with the International Monetary Fund's money.

    Not that she's shirking responsibility. After all, Germany contributes a full six percent of the IMF pool.

    And really, why should Germany be any more responsible for bailing out European debtors than the United States (17 percent) and the other 159 non-European members (60 percent). So Germany and Italy share the same currency, what of it?

    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Rethinking Income Inequality: A New Kind of Payroll Tax

    How do you alleviate economic inequality in America? It's easy to complain about greed and extravagance but much more difficult to come up with practical policies that would make a real difference in the long run.

    The default proposal these days is to increase tax rates on top income brackets, starting with an elimination of the Bush tax cuts. That may help a bit, but as you can see from the following graph, the trend toward income concentration did not begin with Bush's presidency, and it would take radical tax increases to get back to 1970s levels. The government would have to strip an additional 30 percent from the incomes of the top ten percent and somehow put that money into everyone else's pockets.

    Ramona's picture

    Black Friday as Myth-Buster

     

    After the Thanksgiving Day gluttony is over and after our teams have either won or lost (Our biggie between the Lions and the Packers went horribly awry for my loved ones, poor dears.) and after we've taken our tryptophan-induced naps, the next fun thing to think about, talk about or plan for is Black Friday, our annual Big Huge Shopping Extravaganza.  It's the day when primitive survival skills kick in and the absolutely-must-haves traditionally

    Michael Wolraich's picture

    The Trouble with Banks

    It's hard out there for a bank. Last year, retail banks lost a major revenue source when the government regulated overdraft charges. This year, they took another hit when the government capped the debit card fees. And amidst an anemic credit market, they're having trouble finding investment opportunities for their deposits.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    No Plan on Wall Street

    It's become disturbingly clear that the people occupying Wall Street, and the centers of several other major American cities, have no plan for the future. No vision. No coherent ideas. No sense at all of what to do next.

    Donal's picture

    Same as Cash?




    Before about a decade ago, I paid rent, insurance, and doctor's bills by writing checks and sending them through the mail. My wife paid by check at the grocery store. I had a credit card for traveling and large purchases, but used cash as much as possible.

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    Donal's picture

    Politics Under the Sun



    As Solar Decathlon teams assemble their entries, politics heats up everything under the sun. Republicans gleefully exploit the failure of solar panel startup Solyndra, and Germany's Passiv Haus Institut casts out their US incarnation. In Passive House Schism Leaves U.S. in Limbo, GreenSource reports:

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Taylor Branch and the Shame of College Sports (Pay the Kids, Already)

    After I suggested being honest about college sports on this blog page, Taylor Branch has made the same case, better, in The Atlantic. With, you know, actual reporting and everything.

    Here's a bit from Branch's lead, as a shoe-advertising king pin talks openly about "buying your schools" in order to increase his market share:

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