Daily Archives: December 7, 2011

Views from the Solar System (13)


                                                                                                                                        
SPACE WATCH

Alan Bean Descends Intrepid
NASA – Alan L. Bean, Lunar Module pilot for the Apollo 12 mission, starts down the ladder of the Lunar Module (LM) “Intrepid” to join astronaut Charles Conrad, Jr., mission Commander, on the lunar surface. Credits: NASA and Charles Pete Conrad

John Adams, Barack Obama, and tax policy


Oil painting of John Adams by John Trumbull.By Gordon Gray – “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” John Adams said in ‘Argument in Defense of the Soldiers in the Boston Massacre Trials,’ December 1770.

All three of Obama’s budgets include a “current policy adjustment” to assume away the scheduled expiration of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts under current law.

If Obama were to continue those tax policies beyond their scheduled expiration, relative to a current law baseline, he would either have to show those extended policies as major revenue losers, or find a way to offset them. That’s no fun, so maybe just assume they’ll go on forever and not bother paying for them.

That’s exactly what the president did. In his budget for FY2010, the administration includes a policy adjustment of $2,681.3 billion to “Continue the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.” Similar adjustments were included in the FY2011 and FY2012 budgets. more> http://tinyurl.com/6tw2tgu

Verizon cites security issue for nixing Google Wallet


Verizon: Paying Politicians to Rule the Air (g...

Image by watchingfrogsboil @Flickr

By Brad Reed – On the surface, it looked like the kind of scenario that net neutrality advocates had long feared: a big incumbent carrier using its network to snuff out apps that compete with its own services. However, Verizon is insisting that this isn’t the case.

Verizon Tuesday denied that it is blocking the availability of Google Wallet on its smartphones and says that it’s ironing out some technical issues with Google to make the application secure to use on its phones. The big issue, says Verizon, is the integration of the Secure Element chip that Google designed specifically for the Wallet application to store encrypted credit card data separately from your smartphone’s memory chip. more> http://tinyurl.com/74oftyw

Social media’s journalism challenge


Edit30 – Journalism is “writing characterized by a direct presentation of facts or description of events without an attempt at interpretation;” and journalism also is “Writing designed to appeal to current popular taste or public interest.”

CEOs and CMOs are not journalists and to expect that level of candor from them is unrealistic. They are in the business of promoting, not reporting. That is not to say that they want to lie, intentional mislead or withhold vitals facts.

Corporate communicators are not “journalists” and while they may often use the methods of journalists — they cannot be expected to be detached from the businesses they are in. more> http://edit30.com/?p=2922

Bloomberg News Responds to Bernanke Criticism


Bloomberg News – Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said in a letter to four senior lawmakers today that recent news articles about the central bank’s emergency lending programs contained “egregious errors.”

The Fed released separate databases on each of the programs, and several of the databases identified borrowers by the name of the subsidiary that got the loan. None of the releases showed how much money each borrower was in debt to the Fed on specific dates.

Bloomberg built a database to combine subsidiaries with their parent companies and to add the total loans outstanding by each institution across all programs. Bloomberg undertook this project in the belief that a full accounting of the Fed’s lending efforts was possible only by tallying what each company borrowed across all programs. more> http://tinyurl.com/7of93g6

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