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Drug price gouging: Moral, immoral, amoral or necessary?

(01/25/17 12:17pm)

Meet Sovaldi, a drug that (when combined with another) can cure most instances of hepatitis C, an ailment that damages the livers of about 150 million people worldwide. Per a journal article published by the American Chemical Society, this drug costs approximately $130-$350 (per course of treatment) to manufacture. How much might you expect the drug to cost? $400? $800? $2,000?

Washing machines and charitable giving

(12/14/16 3:42pm)

Picture this: one day, you’re doing the laundry, and your washing machine breaks beyond repair. Since washing clothes is important to you, you immediately go to the department store and scope out your options. Being a rational consumer, you want to pick out a good one. You want a machine that is reasonably priced, uses low power, washes clothes well, and is likely to last. After researching your options with sources like Consumer Reports or other industry experts, you settle on a great choice. This was the rational thing to do.

Preferences, primaries and voting: A reconsideration

(11/30/16 3:11pm)

As people went to the polls on election, they were faced with two options, to disastrous results. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are seen unfavorably by about 55.3 percent and 57.8 percent of Americans, respectively. Secretary Clinton and President-Elect Donald Trump were two of the most disliked candidates in modern American politics. How did we get here? At first glance, this might seem perplexing, given that “the people” nominated them in the first place in decisive primary elections. However, a closer looks shows that something else is probably going on here—something that requires a thorough analysis.

Pennies and policy

(10/19/16 12:21pm)

This election cycle has seen absurdity. It’s seen unfounded accusations and claims. And, quite sadly, it’s seen very little talk of actual policy. The last few weeks of this presidential election have taken an especially dark turn. In light of this, I thought I’d take this as an opportunity to stress the importance of policy-oriented discourse by bringing an under-reported policy issue to the forefront: the elimination of the penny, and the reevaluation of the nickel. So here it is: the case for common “cents.”

Political absurdity and its danger

(10/05/16 4:45am)

It is probably an uncontroversial statement to say that this election cycle has seen immense absurdity—an absurdity unmatched by any election in recent memory. We’ve seen Ted Cruz make machine gun bacon. We’ve seen a major news network forget how to signal candidates on stage for a debate. We’ve even seen a meme be designated as a hate symbol by the Anti-Defamation League.

Hold your nose

(09/19/16 2:48pm)

This year’s major party nominees are disliked at historical levels. Donald Trump, the actual trainwreck of a candidate, is seen “strongly unfavorably” by about 53 percent of the nation, and Hillary Clinton, the establishment politician who seems to have a new scandal every other Tuesday, is seen “strongly unfavorably” by about 37 percent. This has led many to ask necessary questions, including the obvious: how did two such unpopular people pave the way to their respective parties’ nominations?

​Orlando and the problem of politicization

(06/23/16 4:54pm)

Some things are just senseless. Some things contain sadness and disaster and tragedy that words cannot convey. Some things go beyond our ability to comprehend. When someone walks into a nightclub and opens fire on defenseless people, that’s senseless. When members of the Latino and LGBT communities are slaughtered, that’s senseless. It’s incomprehensible. It’s morally bankrupt. It’s evil.