Time to Fix the Fafsa – The New York Times

“Susan Dynarski, a professor at the University of Michigan, says that the information needed to calculate eligibility for aid is already collected by the Internal Revenue Service. In a simplified system, she says, tax filers could just check a box on their 1040 and immediately learn of their eligibility for federal grants and loans.”

Source: Time to Fix the Fafsa – The New York Times

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Wednesday’s killings provide further evidence of the need for more restrictive gun policies in the United States. nytimes.com|By Nicholas Kristof

We the People need to dis-empower the NRA and restrict access to guns like the rest of the first world does.

Nicholas Kristof:
■ More Americans die in gun homicides and suicides every six months than have died in the last 25 years in every terrorist attack and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq combined.

■ More Americans have died from guns in the United States since 1968 than on battlefields of all the wars in American history.

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Wednesday’s killings provide further evidence of the need for more restrictive gun policies in the United States.
nytimes.com|By Nicholas Kristof

Birds that once feasted on misfortune are collapsing — part of a broader decline in vultures that illustrates the far-reaching effects of human interventions. nytimes.com|By MARC SANTORA

Sometimes I feel like the guy in the old cartoon, who is holding up a sign that says, The end is near!

Birds that once feasted on misfortune are collapsing — part of a broader decline in vultures that illustrates the far-reaching effects of human interventions.
nytimes.com|By MARC SANTORA

Too Many Law Students, Too Few Legal Jobs – The New York Times

Too many law school graduates drown in debt.

“WILMETTE, Ill. — Ten months after graduation, only 60 percent of the law school class of 2014 had found full-time long-term jobs that required them to pass the bar exam.”

via Too Many Law Students, Too Few Legal Jobs – The New York Times.

Krugman’s Dopey Diatribe Deifying The Public Debt, David Stockman| David Stockman’s Contra Corner

Here is a contrarian point of view.

“Actually, dopey does not even begin to describe Paul Krugman’s latest spot of tommyrot. So here are his own words—–least it appear that the good professor is being unfairly caricaturized. In a world drowning in government debt what we desperately need, by golly, is more of the same:

That is, there’s a reasonable argument to be made that part of what ails the world economy right now is that governments aren’t deep enough in debt.

Yes, indeed. There is currently about $60 trillion of public debt outstanding on a worldwide basis compared to less than $20 trillion at the turn of the century. But somehow this isn’t enough, even though the gain in public debt——-from the US to Europe, Japan, China, Brazil and the rest of the debt-saturated EM world—–actually exceeds the $35 billion growth of global GDP during the last 15 years.”

via Krugman’s Dopey Diatribe Deifying The Public Debt | David Stockman’s Contra Corner.

Removing the application for federal aid would encourage more qualified low-income students to apply to college. nytimes.com|By Susan Dynarski

This article makes sense to me. Follow the data. My FAFSA form was so long, it included all of my income tax form anyway, so they might as well just use them, and drop the fafsa form.
Susan Dynarsky wrote “To quantify just how much the aid bureaucracy discourages college attendance, a team of economists ran a randomized trial in which families applied for aid in a radically simplified process. The results were striking: The streamlined process increased the share of low-income young people who attended college for two years by eight percentage points (to 36 percent from 28 percent).”

Removing the application for federal aid would encourage more qualified low-income students to apply to college.
nytimes.com|By Susan Dynarski

A Moveable Glut – Paul Krugman, The New York Times

Paul Krugman makes articulate arguments for more stimulus spending in the US and Europe.

“But these aren’t just a series of unrelated accidents. Instead, what we’re seeing is what happens when too much money is chasing too few investment opportunities.

More than a decade ago, Ben Bernanke famously argued that a ballooning U.S. trade deficit was the result, not of domestic factors, but of a “global saving glut”: a huge excess of savings over investment in China and other developing nations, driven in part by policy reactions to the Asian crisis of the 1990s, which was flowing to the United States in search of returns. He worried a bit about the fact that the inflow of capital was being channeled, not into business investment, but into housing; obviously he should have worried much more. (Some of us did.) But his suggestion that the U.S. housing boom was in part caused by weakness in foreign economies still looks valid.”

via A Moveable Glut – The New York Times.

Relative to long-term corporate earnings, stocks remain more expensive than at any point from the late 1940s through the early 1990s. nytimes.com|By David Leonhardt

If the Price Earnings Ratio is still above 24, it is still high, and stocks are still expensive. A PE of 15 to 20 is probably average historically.
Price/Earnings = PE. A $20 stock that pays a $1.00 dividend annually, has a PE of 20/1 which equals 20.

Relative to long-term corporate earnings, stocks remain more expensive than at any point from the late 1940s through the early 1990s.
nytimes.com|By David Leonhardt

The Junk Politics of 2015 The candidates are offering us nothing but empty calories. nytimes.com|By Timothy Egan

Timothy Egan: “At least one Republican wants to sic the Internal Revenue Service on his political enemies. So promised Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, in a remarkable statement overlooked at the kids’ table debate last week. “I guarantee you under President Jindal, January 2017, the Department of Justice and the I.R.S. and everybody else we can send from the federal government will be going into Planned Parenthood.”

Other Republicans think we should be living in a theocracy. “It’s time we recognize the Supreme Court is not the Supreme Being,” said Mike Huckabee, the former governor of Arkansas, testing the latest version of his church-lady demagogy. He wants to ignore the high court on both gay marriage and abortion — breaking the law while waving his Bible.”

The candidates are offering us nothing but empty calories.
nytimes.com|By Timothy Egan

The Murder of Mexico’s Free Press – The New York Times

“Since 2010, at least 41 journalists have been killed in Mexico. Roughly 20 have disappeared. Mexican journalists are targeted by powerful criminal organizations and in some instances by government officials who don’t want their misdeeds exposed. The majority of cases remain unsolved, leaving journalists in many parts of the country with a terrible choice: they censor themselves or get silenced by a bullet.”

A woman holds a picture of slain photojournalist Rubén Espinosa at a protest in Xalapa, Mexico, on Monday. Credit Oscar Martinez/Reuters

via The Murder of Mexico’s Free Press – The New York Times.