Benjamin Studebaker

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

Tag: Michael Bloomberg

Why Bernie Sanders is More Electable Than People Think

A few days ago, I wrote a popular post about the ideological differences between Bernie Sanders, the egalitarian committed to shrinking the financial sector and boosting consumption by raising wages, and Hillary Clinton, the neoliberal committed to protecting the interests of finance capital. I explained the history of the Democratic Party and how it came to be captured by neoliberalism–the same economic ideology espoused by Ronald Reagan and many of his successors in the Republican Party. Many people found that this clarified the differences between Bernie and Hillary for them. However some people expressed concern that even though they think Bernie’s ideology is more desirable, he may still nonetheless be unable to beat a republican in a general election. A republican victory would be awful for the left–even a neoliberal democrat is still noticeably to the left of a neoliberal republican, especially on issues like climate change or LGBT rights. However, I think there are good reasons to think that Bernie is at least as electable as Hillary, and possibly significantly more so.

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The Wall Street Journal v. Bicycles

New York City has recently started up a bicycle program, similar to the ones that already exist in many European cities like Paris or London. However, the Wall Street Journal is none too pleased. They made a video, which you can find here. The video makes some rather odd claims.

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NYC Marathon Madness

The public has spoken, and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has responded by cancelling the New York City Marathon amid a massive outcry. I, however, have a question, not merely for the mayor but for everyone whose reaction to the mayor’s previous announcement that the marathon would continue was one of visceral condemnation–why? What is the reason that the marathon needed to be cancelled? Who benefits from the cancellation? Not the runners, many of whom have spent a lot of money to come to the city only to find that the marathon has been cancelled. Not the New York economy, which takes in over $300 million each year as a result of the marathon. The people adversely effected by Hurricane Sandy, you say? How do they benefit? Everyone seems to assume that the cancellation is for the benefit of the victims, but I’m not seeing it. Don’t hang me just yet–I have reasons.

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Nanny State Ethics and NYC

Recently New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has gotten into the business of regulating his citizens’ health choices. Two prominent recent examples come to mind:

Today I would like to discuss whether or not such regulations or “nudge” policies are within the state’s ethical purview. First, let’s look at what sort of argument opponents of these policies have at their disposal:

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