Links, 9/22/10

  • Megan McArdle, “The Bad Financial Luck of the Irish” – from the article: But Ireland’s problems are really rather special.  For various reasons, including favorable corporate tax rates and an educated, English-speaking population, capital poured into the country for more than a decade, leading to a banking sector that was grossly inflated compared to the underlying economy.  The US banking sector is rather tame by comparison to most European nations–bank leverage at the beginning of the crisis was about equal to GDP, rather than the three to five times GDP found in many European nations.  But Ireland is almost in a class by itself.
  • Jay Cost, “A New Contract with America?” – from the article: Yet even though the contract probably had just a marginal effect on the November elections, it still had value. It was a blueprint for the Republicans in Congress, a straightforward plan of action that gave the GOP majority meaning and purpose. The real worth of the contract was in governing, not electioneering.
  • Mark Bauerlein, “Lincoln, History and Ideology” – the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy has been printing copies of the Gettysburg Address that do not contain the words “under God.” The trouble with this: it is almost certain Lincoln said those words at Gettysburg, and the most authoritative copies of the Address contain those words.
  • Mary Elizabeth Williams, “Have Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart Crossed the Line?” – from the article: But how much difference is there anymore between a Glenn Beck pompously telling an audience of acolytes exactly what it wants to hear, and Jon Stewart doing it? How much self-congratulation about how much better our side is than their side can there be to go around?

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