A New CBO Analysis Shows How Trump’s Health-Care Policies Would Spell Bad News for Americans | Pacific Standard


If the government stopped providing the CSRs (cost-sharing reduction payments) to insurers, insurers would still be required to offer those types of plans to low-income Americans, but they would no longer be reimbursed by the government for those costs.

Insurers would likely respond by increasing premiums on silver-level ACA plans (the types of plans that premium subsidy levels are pegged to). The CBO projects that gross premiums on those plans (premiums before ACA premium subsidies) would be 20 percent higher in 2018 and 25 percent higher by 2020.

Source: A New CBO Analysis Shows How Trump’s Health-Care Policies Would Spell Bad News for Americans – Pacific Standard

Lego-Like Brain Balls Could Build a Living Replica of Your Noggin | WIRED


The human brain is routinely described as the most complex object in the known universe.

It might therefore seem unlikely that pea-size blobs of brain cells growing in laboratory dishes could be more than fleetingly useful to neuroscientists. Nevertheless, many investigators are now excitedly cultivating these curious biological systems, formally called cerebral organoids and less formally known as mini-brains.

With organoids, researchers can run experiments on how living human brains develop—experiments that would be impossible (or unthinkable) with the real thing.

Source: Lego-Like Brain Balls Could Build a Living Replica of Your Noggin | WIRED

How to care about work less—but not do less of it | Quartz


In my role as a practical philosopher, I speak daily with individuals from Silicon Valley to Scandinavia about their obsessions with work—obsessions that, by their own accounts, are making them miserable. Nevertheless, they assume that work is worth caring a lot about because of the fulfillments and rewards it supplies, so much so that it should be the center of life.

I think this is an unsound foundation to base our lives upon. The solution to our over-worked state isn’t to do less work; it’s to care less about it.

Source: How to care about work less—but not do less of it — Quartz

Trump quietly putting his stamp on the courts | TheHill


President Trump has been quietly making lifetime appointments to fill more than 100 vacancies on federal courts across the country.

With five judges confirmed, another 30 pending and 123 seats left to fill, according to one group tracking the numbers, Trump has the opportunity to revamp the judiciary branch and carve out a legacy for himself that could stand the test of time.

Source: Trump quietly putting his stamp on the courts | TheHill

You might be in a medical experiment and not even know it | Aeon Ideas


.. the Nuremberg Code, the founding document of modern medical research ethics developed after the Second World War in response to Nazi medical experiments, stated unequivocally that the voluntary, informed consent of the human subject is essential. Every research ethics code since then has incorporated this most fundamental principle. Exceptions to this rule are supposed to be truly exceptional.

Yet today, more and more medical experimenters in the United States appear to circumvent getting the voluntary, informed consent of those whose bodies are being used for research.

What’s more, rather than fighting this retrograde trend, some of the most powerful actors in medical research are defending it as necessary to medical progress.

Source: You might be in a medical experiment and not even know it | Aeon Ideas

Trump rule change ignites safety debate | TheHill


The elimination of the rule, part of the White House’s push to slash federal regulations, has reignited a debate over how to balance safety concerns with regulatory relief.

Safety advocates warn that killing the proposal could put lives at risk at a time when traffic deaths are already climbing at historic rates: fatalities in large truck crashes have increased by 20 percent since 2009.

Source: Trump rule change ignites safety debate | TheHill

Insurers cite uncertainty in filing ObamaCare rate hikes | TheHill


The Kaiser Family Foundation analyzed initial premium requests from 21 major cities, and found the rate requests ran the gamut from a 5 percent decrease in Providence, R.I., to a 49 percent increase in Wilmington, Del.

Some areas saw more modest increases or virtually no change.

“But if the Trump administration had been more clear about what the rules were going to be for next year, we would likely have seen much smaller premium increases,” Cynthia Cox said.

Source: Insurers cite uncertainty in filing ObamaCare rate hikes | TheHill

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U.S. Credit-Card Debt Surpasses Record Set at Brink of Crisis | Bloomberg


The bet is that this time it won’t end so badly. In 2008, a drop in home prices spiraled into a global financial meltdown, and after the jobless rate surged toward 10 percent, banks wrote off more than $100 billion in credit-card loans over the next two years.

Source: U.S. Credit-Card Debt Surpasses Record Set at Brink of Crisis – Bloomberg

Climate Report Could Force Trump to Choose Between Science and His Base | The New York Times


The impending release of a key government report on climate change will force President Trump to choose between accepting the conclusions of his administration’s scientists and the demands of his conservative supporters, who remain deeply unconvinced that humans are the cause of the planet’s warming.

.. the looming publication of the climate report — which concludes that “evidence for a changing climate abounds, from the top of the atmosphere to the depths of the oceans” — once again raises a contentious policy issue that has deeply divided Mr. Trump’s closest advisers since he arrived in the Oval Office.

Source: Climate Report Could Force Trump to Choose Between Science and His Base – The New York Times

Five takeaways from the federal climate report | TheHill


The report is part of an effort that 13 federal agencies undertake every four years to report on the state of the climate and climate science.

It’s government-mandated, but the Trump administration has yet to sign off on the report, raising concerns that the administration could undercut some of its more dire observations and predictions.

Here are five takeaways from the climate study.

  1. Scientists are afraid of Trump
  2. The publicity calls attention to any changes the administration might make
  3. The report directly contradicts Trump officials’ arguments
  4. The study repeats past calls for huge emissions cuts
  5. Climate change is already affecting people

Source: Five takeaways from the federal climate report | TheHill