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Pope Francis’s Failure to See Entrepreneurs as Good Samaritans Undercuts the Poor »

On April 25, a videotaped talk by Pope Francis was released at the international TED conference in Vancouver, Canada. The 18-minute talk, titled “Why the Only Future Worth Building Includes Everyone,” can be viewed here. Francis highlighted three themes, beginning with the observation that community is central to human existence: [L]ife flows through our...
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Health Services Accounts for One-Fifth of Weak Q3 GDP Growth »

Wednesday’s advance estimate of Gross Domestic Product for the third quarter indicates that growth in health spending is maintaining a disproportionate share of weak GDP growth. Commenters noted that the weak estimate was largely due to shrinking inventories. This explains why personal consumption expenditure (PCE) growth ($135.7 billion) was actually higher than GDP growth ($121.1 billion),...
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Health Spending an Increasing Share of GDP »

Last week’s third estimate of Gross Domestic Product for the second quarter confirms that growth in health spending might be moderating somewhat from its initial Obamacare-fueled rush. Unfortunately, it is not a clear break in the trend of health spending consuming an increasing share of our national income. Current GDP grew $264.4 billion, or 1.5 percent,...
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Is China Really Crashing? »

We seem to be panicking about China’s economy. Let’s pause and look at some of the facts. First, consider the short-term concerns that sent shock waves across the world. Unlike the United States, where very developed capital markets are connected to the economy at large, in China the linkage is less strong. Even so,...
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U.S. Has Less Economic Freedom than Chile, Jordan, or Taiwan »

Today the Fraser Institute in Vancouver, Canada, released the 2015 Economic Freedom of the World Report (pdf) and it’s bad news for the United States, where economic freedom is falling. The U.S. ranks only 16th in economic freedom trailing Chile, Jordan, and Taiwan. The EFW Report measures the level of economic freedom in 157...
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Whose Fossil Fuel Use Will G7 Leaders Reduce by 70%? »

Our global political masters met in Germany this week: see how green they are? They’re walking ... in a field: can’t get any greener than that! And, as usual, they are coming up with the definitive solutions to the greatest threats of today: the end of the use of fossil fuels—in 85 years. No...
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Patent Trolls Still Alive and Kicking »

Over at Techdirt, there is a good story up on how a patent troll attacked a startup and the litigation costs so distressed the startup that it was forced to sell out to another patent troll. Peter Braxton created Jump Rope Inc., and developed an app that allows users to pay a fee to...
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Shifting from Quantity to Quality in Patent Applications »

VentureBeat has published a good piece on how “innovators are now moving away from creating untargeted, mass-produced innovations that aim only to secure as many patents as possible, and they’re moving toward precise innovation centered around specific product and market needs.” The American patent system has long been suffering the consequences of the issuance of...
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Health Spending Crushing a Stalled Economy »

March’s estimate of last year’s fourth quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) showed that health spending was chewing through a weak economy. Today’s release of the advanced estimate of this year’s first quarter GDP might best be described as health spending crushing a stalled economy. GDP barely budged, increasing by a trivial 0.2 percent annualized....
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Patent Trolls Suffer Setback »

It is always good news to hear about a patent troll taking one on the chin. According to this article from the BBC, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) has invalidated parts of a patent claimed by Personal Audio. The patent at issue claimed all rights on “a system for disseminating media content representing...
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