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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-22-2005, 10:14 PM   #81
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Re: class in the united states

Martha, YDKM, I haven't read the book or hear anything about it, so I won't try to argue it specifically, I just think it sounds like taking one variable in a vacuum and tying results to it. We used to do that in my Econ classes, calling everything else externalities and promptly banishing them from the equation. I'm just saying if you looked at the society/culture of the area that had free access to planned parenting vs. no access, you might see it's an element of a larger picture (poorer, rural areas tend to be more religious i.e. pro life). Y'all know my militant feminist credentials, I never thought I'd appear to be arguing from this side of the aisle, I just get the heeby jeebies when I hear talk of societies problems being solved by terminating the undesirables.

Your second example definitely strikes me as a better one. I won't say I know why, but I've seen consistently better parenting among my older friends. I'm very glad to have had Tori at 30 instead of 20, and I think the maturity I've gained allows me to see her not getting in the way of my life, but as the best part of my life. BTW she is having her echocardiogram this wed. and we find out then if she gets out of having heart surgery. Wish us luck!
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 07:37 AM   #82
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Re: class in the united states

Hey, who is this Mephisto person and how did they get up to 676
posts so fast? Guess it's time to untie the half of my brain which has
been tied behind my back (just to make it fair).

JG
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 08:01 AM   #83
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Re: class in the united states

Quote:
Hey, who is this Mephisto person and how did they get up to 676
posts so fast?
It is the artist formerly known as Laurencewill
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 09:49 AM   #84
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Re: class in the united states

I didn't want to be left off the witness protection program bandwagon! I thought we were all changing our name! Maybe I'll go artist formerly known as and switch again! How does, "The Laurence" sound? Maybe an unpronouncable symbol like &?
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 10:44 AM   #85
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Re: class in the united states

Quote:
Originally Posted by wildcat
I refer to a national healthcare system as a step in the socialism direction b/c essentially it is an attempt to equate imbalances through government intervention. Might be a stretch.
The name is not important. What is your stance on a national heath care system? Obviously, there will be advantages and disadvantages. Making health care available for everyone is a good thing -- just like education. There are a few questions:
How do we fund it?
How do we make it accessible?
How do we ensure quality?
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 12:54 PM   #86
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Re: class in the united states

I didnt read the book either, but according to his testimony interview they did some hard-core statistical work to remove other influences. The results were similar regardless of comparing "high fahlutin" areas to backwaters, high vs low income, east vs west coast rap, etc. I was thinking of getting it and reading it, but it was $15 and I already found alternative answers to some of his thesis'. Maybe when the library gets it. I didnt have any problem with their methods of gathering and analyzing the data, which is not a common occurrence, I just wasnt sure of their conclusions.

Putting aside ones feelings for or against abortion, is it so hard to believe that unwanted children have a higher incidence of becoming criminally oriented? The stats in this case were pretty good; per capita abortion rate over the last 15-20 years is over xx%, crime rate drops an equivalent yy%, regardless of how you geographically sliced the data.

Our fingers are crossed on your baby's medical results.

I see you are now Mephisto instead of Mephistopheles. Thats good, as that was not your name. I knew what you were up to just the same.
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 01:19 PM   #87
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Re: class in the united states

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spanky
The name is not important. What is your stance on a national heath care system? Obviously, there will be advantages and disadvantages. Making health care available for everyone is a good thing -- just like education. There are a few questions:
How do we fund it?
How do we make it accessible?
How do we ensure quality?
Seems to me one possibility would be to have a national insurance pool.
- spread risk/premiums across population
- negotiate fees for treatment/drugs
- eliminate use of emergency rooms for routine care
- enable preventive care/early treatment to lower overall costs/improve overall health.
- cover everyone.

To me it's a better idea than a national health system, which would ration care and undoubtedly dumb-down quality.

Caveat emptor: I don't really trust the government to do much of anything, but national insurance sounds like the lessor of two evils v. nationalized medicene.
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 01:25 PM   #88
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Re: class in the united states

What about the downsides? I understand the canadian style system is much vaunted, and certainly better for basic care than our system is.

However my canadian friends and relatives report that while necessary care is easily gotten and prompt, anything that isnt necessary or urgent takes a bazillion years to get an appointment for.
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 01:30 PM   #89
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Re: class in the united states

Which is why I'd prefer nationalized insurance.
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 01:31 PM   #90
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Re: class in the united states

No reason to ration care.

(Trying my hand at this multiple-posting strategy... :P
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 03:09 PM   #91
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Re: class in the united states

I'll check the book out when I get the chance. I'd have to read his whole premise before I wade in any deeper. I freely admit that what I'd like to believe and reality are not always the same thing. Maybe it would be more honest for me to say I'd hope the solution wasn't more abortions.

I'm switching back to most of my previous name, I figure the cat's out of the bag at this point anyway. And I'm already wrapped around Tori's finger.


I think as far as health care goes, we are going to find out what happens when we do nothing about it. The health care lobby got that Canadian import thing shut down right quick, Congress claimed it was for "safety" reasons-yeah, I see Canadians dropping dead from their meds all the time :P. The thing is, those who can't afford health care are politically powerless as it is. Drug companies are busy making "me too" products like erectile dysfunction drugs and then running a gazillion ads (I'm sure everyone has heard "if erections last for more than 4 hours...." way too many times) and not actually innovating. Also, notice that the era of vaccines seems to be over, yet "treatments" for "chronic conditions" are all over the place. I'm not claiming conspiracy, but follow the money...
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 03:44 PM   #92
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Re: class in the united states

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence
I'm sure everyone has heard "if erections last for more than 4 hours...." way too many times
Shoot, I'd have spent a lot of time in the emergency room when I was a teenager had I known about that.

And for a good month I thought those Cialis ads with Mike Ditka in them were telling me I could be a better football player if I took it. Now I know why my teammates were always looking at me nervously...
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-23-2005, 03:48 PM   #93
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Re: class in the united states

Gives a new meaning to being "under center".
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-25-2005, 01:43 PM   #94
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Re: class in the united states

Quoting from a critique of Freakonomics:

"Abortion Legalization and the Crime Rate

Not surprisingly, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner's new book "Freakonomics" ignores their academic critics, but Steve Landsburg's review disappointingly does so too (Leisure & Arts, April 13). Take just the book's first claim: Unwanted children are more likely to grow up to be criminals and that abortion can therefore reduce crime, a plausible idea that has been around since the beginning of the abortion debate. Yet, despite Messrs. Levitt and Dubner's claims, legalization doesn't explain 75% of the drop in murder rates during the 1990s, and if anything the reverse is true.

Their data had a serious error. The Planned Parenthood affiliated organization that supplied them with the data incorrectly claimed that when abortion was legalized during the late 1960s and early 1970s, states went from a complete ban to complete legalization, but abortions had been allowed before complete legalization when the life or health of the mother was endangered. The Centers for Disease Control data show that before Roe v. Wade many states that had allowed abortions only when the life or health of the mother was endangered actually had higher abortion rates than states where it was completely "legal."

If Messrs. Levitt and Dubner were correct, crime rates should have first started falling among younger people who were first born after legalization. Only as they aged would you start seeing crime fall among older criminals. But in fact the precise opposite is true. Murder rates during the 1990s first started falling for the oldest criminals and very last for the youngest."

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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-25-2005, 03:36 PM   #95
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Re: class in the united states

I'm going to bet that mr Lott is a pro-lifer or he's in support of the alternate thesis that higher levels of law enforcement explain the drops in crime. And once again, i'm neither pro or con, as I lack a womb I dont think I have a vote in the matter. But on the matter of statistics and data gathering...thats another story...

Lott serves up a ball with a nice spin, let me unwind it for you.

Abortion in the 50's and 60's was a huge no-no due to religious and social stigma. The actual rates were extremely low even when legalized. A lot of times an abortion was classified as a 'health or life endangerment of the mother' to smooth out that stigma. A lot of abortions were done and not recorded when it was 'illegal'...and even after it was made legal.

In other words, any statistics gathered or applied during these times were extraordinarily inaccurate and including them would be inadvisable as a result. Besides becoming 'legal', a lot of the stigma fell by the wayside. Medical record keeping also improved dramatically in the 60's and 70's.

Some of Mr. Lotts points are valid, but the numbers are statistically very small and come from a highly poisoned tree. His sudden conclusion that the data analysis done by Levitt and Dubner is invalid as a result is not very well supported.

To illustrate the situation, this is like saying "There were only 7 abortions in the entire decade of the 1950's in the state of xyz...however the crime rate in xyz dropped the same rate in 1975 as it did in 1995 when precursored by 7000 abortions in xyz state in the 1970's, so the whole thesis is wrong"...had there actually been only 7 abortions in the 1950's in xyz, that would be the case.

I think theres another influence in that unwanted children may have had a better safety net 50 years ago than they do today. The advent of nuclear family structures. The unwanted child doesnt get sent to live with the grandparents or a siblings family as was more common 50-100 years ago. So there may be more than one influence...unwanted kids that grow up with the parents that dont want them.

But back to the 'prarie dog' look, and getting away from the weed level stats...do you believe that a child that grows up with inattentive, unloving parents has an equal chance of being a 'good citizen' as someone who is nurtured and well cared for by loving parents?
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-25-2005, 04:01 PM   #96
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Re: class in the united states

Quote:
Originally Posted by You dont know me


But back to the 'prarie dog' look, and getting away from the weed level stats...do you believe that a child that grows up with inattentive, unloving parents has an equal chance of being a 'good citizen' as someone who is nurtured and well cared for by loving parents?
No, absolutely not. The point is ceded, but quit inserting reality in the middle of a debate on who can spin statistics to better suit their theory!

It seems like Freakonomiccs is a fresh look at some preconcieved notions, mixed with some "we alredy knew that" common sense conclusions. I'll give it a gander, someday.
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Re: class in the united states
Old 05-25-2005, 04:04 PM   #97
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Re: class in the united states

Your summation is accurate. Levitt came right out and said that 'experts' regularly stir the stat pot to say things that really arent true, and that a lot of experts have an axe to grind or an outcome already in mind before they even look at the data. Something I've made a point of expressing quite regularly here as I believe its true.

His data gathering and analysis are good. His conclusions perhaps arent. But they're interesting to think about in an alternative perspective way. And they make good discussion fodder.

I may do an "amazon read" on some parts of it when I'm really bored next winter.

Now dont go and post again, or you'll force me to come up with something else to say!
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