ST. JOHNSBURY, VT - FEBRUARY 06: Drugs are prepared to shoot intravenously by a user addicted to heroin on February 6, 2014 in St. Johnsbury Vermont. Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin recently devoted his entire State of the State speech to the scourge of heroin. Heroin and other opiates have begun …

Better OxyContin Leads to Worse Heroin Epidemic

The conventional wisdom on the opioid crisis is that prescription drug dependency was a major factor behind the surge of addictions and overdoses. This belief was challenged by studies demonstrating that prescription drug problems from the 1990s and 2000s were fading before the current opioid crisis began, and the real problem today is with street drugs like heroin and fentanyl. New research highlights a very sharp dividing line between the earlier pill problem and today’s drug crisis: OxyContin was reformulated in 2010 to cut down on abuse, so addicts turned to heroin.

Great Park Irvine (Joe Wolf / Flickr / CC / Cropped)

Bold: Irvine Dumps $13.34-per-Hour ‘Living Wage’

The Irvine City Council voted 4 to 1 to begin dumping an eight-year-old “Living Wage” ordinance on Wednesday night that forces most of the city’s thousands of contractors to pay all employees at least $13.34 an hour.

EBT California (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Report: California’s High Welfare Benefits Attract New Immigrants

In a report entitled “Immigrants Tend to Live in High Welfare Benefit States,” published on Jan. 26, 2015, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) determined that “the generous welfare benefits offered by some states have magnetic effects and alter the geographic sorting of immigrants in the United States”–attracting many to California.

AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB

National Bureau of Economic Research Dragged Into Jonathan Gruber Scandal

Much of the research assistant work performed for Professor Jonathan Gruber’s 2009 $392,600 contract with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop economic models for the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) seems to have been conducted by an employee of the NBER.