Archive for January, 2017

A good New Year’s resolution: If you do not exercise, start now–a little goes a long way

I read a cheery Associated Press report today by their Chief Medical Writer Marilynn Marchione that It’s all good: Any exercise cuts your risk of death.  What impresses me is the sample size of 64,000 adults who the UK researchers interviewed and then tracked for death rates.  Another surprise is that almost two-thirds of these individuals did not exercise.  These slackers could reduce their risk of dying by 30 percent if they would just get out for a walk now and then.  Come on people!

“A particularly encouraging finding was that a physical activity frequency as low as one or two sessions per week was associated with lower mortality risks.”

– Researchers from the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine–East Midlands at Loughborough University

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Finns giving up to $2000 per month at random to 2000 jobless citizens

It seems too good to be true, but the Finnish government started off this new year by giving 2000 unemployed Finnish people between 25 and 58 years of age an income of up to $2000 per month, according to this New York Times report.  They will monitor these lucky recipients to see how many squander their money on vodka versus investing it in something productive such as a business startup.  Their experiment will run for two years.

This initiative for a universal basic income has a broad appeal from leftist liberals to libertarians, who see it as a way to shrink stifling social services.  According to this CBS News report, an experiment by Manitoba to provide a “mincome” produced positive results.  It will be interesting to see if the Finns also find that it pays to provide free money.

“It always should be worth taking the job rather than staying home and taking the benefits.  We have to take the risk to do this experiment.”

– Pirkko Mattila, Finland’s Minister of Social Affairs and Health

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