Benjamin Studebaker

Yet Another Attempt to Make the World a Better Place by Writing Things

Candidate Evaluations: Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders, an independent senator from Vermont, has announced that he’s challenging Hillary Clinton to be the Democratic Party’s nominee for president. So it’s time to return to the Candidate Evaluations series, where we examine a candidate’s background, policy history, and explicit statements in an attempt to figure out whether the candidate would actually be any good at being president. Too often, no one bothers to ask these questions, focusing instead on electability or likability. Previously, I’ve covered Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Hillary Clinton, and Marco Rubio. None of them looked especially promising. Can Sanders do better?

Read the rest of this entry »

3 More Ways Inequality Poisons Societies

Before I started writing this blog, I read an interesting book called The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger by Kate Pickett and Richard Wilkinson. It occurred to me the other day, when I found myself making use of some of the book’s statistics in an argument, that I have not yet shared its findings with blog readers. This struck me as something of a massive oversight–the book establishes statistical relationships linking numerous social pathologies to income inequality, and it even shows that inequality has a much stronger influence on these pathologies than raw wealth in absolute terms.

Read the rest of this entry »