NeuroEconomics

Nearly since its inception, the field of Economics has used preference relationships, utility functions, and complete rationality as the theoretical basis for nearly all of its major findings.  Nevertheless, while the homo oeconomicus may preform well in certain contexts, in others areas the hypothesis of completely rational humans has been found to be patently false. …

Fiscal Shenanigans and Targeted Health Care Funds

Katherine Baicker and Douglas Staiger (2004) have a working paper detailing how states often expropriate federal health care funds to use in their general budget. The paper shows that while federal dollars may not always reach the intended destination, these programs can still be somewhat effective in improving health outcomes. DSH Program Federal Medicaid Disproportionate…

Praise for Health Care Economist

I would like to thank Joseph Paduda for his kind words on March 2nd. Principal of Health Strategy Associates, Mr. Paduda cited my Medicare timeline and stated: “Jason Shafrin at Healthcare-Economist.com has provided a brief timeline of the development of Medicare in the US. Jason’s blog is quite good; heavy on the policy side (no…

California’s stem cell initiative a waste?

In November 2004, California passed Proposition 71 which allocated $3 billion over ten years to stem cell research. Many of my friends–especially those in the medical field–strongly supported the bill. While I support stem cell research, I do not approve of the referendum system by which this bill was enacted. Spending $3 billion on unproven research…

EconBrowser – Jim Hamilton’s Blog

Jim Hamilton, one of my professors, has a great blog which analyzes current events from a macroeconomic point of view (Econbrowser.com). For instance, in the post “Just how implausible is a gasoline tax,” Hamilton reviews a NYT article which states that while 85% of Americans oppose a gas tax, 59% would support a gas tax…

H&R Block misfiles taxes?!?!?!

H&R Block, one of the largest tax services businesses in the United States, has incorrectly filed its taxes in 2003 and 2004.  The tax error understated H&R Block’s tax liability by $32 million.   Oh the irony!!!  Check out the complete article in BusinessWeek (“H&R Block falls on 3Q results, tax issue“).