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James Buchanan, a Star Economist Who Understood Obamacare

Jan. 10 (Bloomberg) -- It is sad, but telling, that the economist James Buchanan died just as Congress was finishing up the details of its budget deal. Or, for that matter, that this 93-year-old Nobel Memorial Prize winner left us just as the U.S. entered the stage of enforcement of its new health-care law.

Almost everyone involved in the budget deal agrees that it is more a product of interest groups than a principled construct. The same can be said for Obamacare.