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Is it cheaper to build your own furniture?

Yes, a little less labor. Yes, the frame and all of the plumbing and electrical work will be paid for. No, you cannot save much on furniture-building time than you can by buying it off-the-shelf. You may not even actually save that much on the furniture, since many of the furniture costs are simply passed on to the consumer. But that’s OK—because it’s all yours! So far, I’ve never regretted spending the extra time to make something myself.

Do you build your own furniture?

No. I usually buy them in retail.

Do you have a particular style you’d like to sell?

I’ve been building for over 30 years, so there might be a couple of pieces I’d like to trade or sell.

There’s one thing you’d like to change about building your furniture: If you could build anything in the world, what would it be and why?

No idea. I’m still deciding about that.

Have you ever built a replica? What was the experience?

No, not yet. But I’ll learn.

You’ve built a lot of furniture. Which piece is yours?

Right now, that’s all I got. I still have a lot to learn.

The federal government was hit with a record $18.5 billion in federal fines last week for mismanagement in the Medicare and Medicaid health-care programs.

Fines for the U.S. government for last week’s health-care scandals reached $18.5 billion, a record, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services.

The record penalty brings the total federal fines, excluding federal penalties for Medicaid fraud, as of Wednesday evening to $16.1 billion. That includes $2 billion in penalties levied on health insurers and $2.5 billion for fraudulent health plans.

The penalties come at a difficult time for the health-care system, which is facing another financial crisis. In February, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that the Medicare trust fund was going broke and must be restructured. The trust fund is the main source of dollars for health-care programs, like Medicare. Last week, HHS revealed that the trust fund would run out of money by March 2016.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Monday that $28 billion in extra payments would be paid out by October to make up the shortfall, a plan that is popular