A think tank devoted to the study of inequality, headed by John Podesta (Clinton chief of staff, Obama advisor, and founder of the Center for American Progress), featuring Emmanuel Saez, Raj Chetty, and Brad DeLong? Wow. I am *fascinated* by where this will go.

(I have dropped off of Facebook and Twitter, so you might expect this blog to contain more in the way of “a link with a little commentary around it”.)

Inasmuch as universal health insurance is fundamentally about inequality, maybe here is the place to include a link to Jon Cohn’s great piece entitled “Obamacare Makes Men Pay for Maternity Care. Good!” The slam-dunk argument in the piece, and the moral principle that really ought to have universal appeal (but sadly doesn’t) is:

> __So you ended up XY instead of XX. Get over yourself.__ Even conservatives generally stipulate that insurance should protect people from the financial consequences of random events. But they seem not to recognize that being born a woman is a random event. Sorry, dudes, you had no control over that. Allowing insurers to discriminate based on gender means penalizing half the population, just because those folks ended up with one type of chromosome instead of another.

That’s liberalism in a nutshell: in whatever way works best, try to minimize the effects of random misfortune.

As I mentioned to a friend:

> While we’re on the topic, John McDonough’s [book: Inside National Health Reform] is a must-read. It’s the book I think of whenever anyone says that “no one has read all of the Affordable Care Act.” McDonough’s book is what to read if you in fact want to understand every page of the ACA. It contains one chapter for each title of the ACA, along with a really patient explanation of the politics and Congressional procedure that led to its being the way it is. I want to buy a hundred copies of it and hand them out at parties.

I’ve not yet reviewed it, because I am a terrible person. I’ll let the above stand, for now, as the stub of a review.