What Would Ronald Reagan Do?

Bill Brown, a visiting professor of the practice of law at Duke University, says the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 is the best model for getting America out of it's economic mess. According to Duke, Brown thinks it "offers a blueprint for fiscal stimulus that would be far more effective than the stimulus package currently before Congress."


Brown reflects on a similar time, when America was "plagued by slow economic growth, high interest rates and high inflation." ERTA, he says, not only reduced tax rates, but established a powerful set of incentives to promote investment in income-producing 'capital assets' — plant, property, and equipment—but it also "resuscitated the Kennedy-era investment tax credit, which gave business partial reimbursement for the purchase of every new income-producing asset they acquired. And it added to this subsidy by allowing all those assets to be depreciated extremely rapidly under the new Accelerated Cost Recovery System."

The effect was almost immediate, says Brown.

Plants have awareness and intelligence, argue scientists

Research in plant neurobiology shows that plants have senses, intelligence and emotions.

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Surprising Science
  • The field of plant neurobiology studies the complex behavior of plants.
  • Plants were found to have 15-20 senses, including many like humans.
  • Some argue that plants may have awareness and intelligence, while detractors persist.
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Vaping changes blood vessels after one use, even without nicotine

E-cigarettes may be safer than traditional cigarettes, but they come with their own risks.


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Surprising Science
  • A new study used an MRI machine to examine how vaping e-cigarettes affects users' cardiovascular systems immediately after inhalation.
  • The results showed that vaping causes impaired circulation, stiffer arteries and less oxygen in their blood.
  • The new study adds to a growing body of research showing that e-cigarettes – while likely safer than traditional cigarettes – are far from harmless.
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Space is dead: A challenge to the standard model of quantum mechanics

Since the idea of locality is dead, space itself may not be an aloof vacuum: Something welds things together, even at great distances.

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  • Realists believe that there is an exactly understandable way the world is — one that describes processes independent of our intervention. Anti-realists, however, believe realism is too ambitious — too hard. They believe we pragmatically describe our interactions with nature — not truths that are independent of us.
  • In nature, properties of Particle B may be depend on what we choose to measure or manipulate with Particle A, even at great distances.
  • In quantum mechanics, there is no explanation for this. "It just comes out that way," says Smolin. Realists struggle with this because it would imply certain things can travel faster than light, which still seems improbable.
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