A decade ago, Richard Mayhew started writing at Balloon Juice.
A decade later, Dave Anderson is still writing for Balloon Juice. In that time I’ve written over 2400 health care and health insurance posts, another 600+ general purpose posts and engaged in 1.67 career changes while moving my family 400 miles to chase a dream. I never expected to be here for a decade, but here it is.
I always said I would stop writing snarky policy analysis when either I stopped enjoying writing snarky policy analysis or my boss told me to stop for the third time. Neither condition holds, so you guys are stuck with me for another year.
I’ve slowed down over the past two years as I have realized that I only have so many good deep thinking and writing hours a day. PhDing eats up most of those hours. And I know that some of the things that I find interesting and worth writing about might be of interest to eleven people nationally. Five of those eleven are Jackals. It is easier to just drop them an e-mail or get into the group chat for the esoteric and weird. And yes, I know that what I write here is esoteric and obscure and often weird, so please appropriately discount what I consider to be too damn esoteric for Balloon Juice and have pity on my friends and co-authors.
Right now, my big project for the next year is to complete my PhD training and find a job. The three aims for my dissertation are looking at how states implement the ACA and what they do with that discretion. The dissertation is a combination of looking at choice behavior and choice menus. I think how I got to this point makes a lot of sense but it is not the only plausible pathway I could have taken for intellectual curiousity in September 2013.
My proposed dissertation complements some of my other ongoing work. We just got a paper rejected with an invitation to resubmit a substantial revision on the outcomes of states switching from Healthcare.gov to their own state based marketplace. Sketching out our response to the reviewers that do not involve them stepping on a LEGO or mid-day author whiskey is this afternoon’s challenge. I’m involved in another group which is waiting for a decision on a manuscript that looks at reinsurance waiver outcomes. This is part of a recently funded Commonwealth Fund project where we will be looking at administrative burden. Finally, two co-authors and I have an econ paper under review on time and information related moral hazard.
This is FUN!
It is also much narrower and deeper than what I was doing a decade ago. I’ve learned a lot. Some of that learning is from PhDing or being at Margolis for five years. Some of it is just writing three to five posts a week for ten years. Hopefully one picks up things while writing and thinking deeply.
And for that, I’m always grateful to the community here. Watergirl and John for creating a place, and the Jackals for giving me the space to wander and wonder while occasionally being helpful.
Thank you…. and let’s see what decade #2 looks like.