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commentary on Politics and a little bit of everything else

Obama's NCAA Basketball Championship pick's……….

rs13716_espn03obamakatz

Barack Obama has filled out his NCAA bracket, and the president thinks Kanas will survive March Madness and defeat Kentucky to win the title. His Final Four consists of Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky and Villanova.

The president’s bracket is fairly safe, with two 1-seeds and two 2-seeds advancing to the Final Four. The lowest seeded team in his Elite Eight is 3-seed Georgetown.

Last year, Obama correctly picked North Carolina to win the tournament, and he provided commentary during the CBS broadcast of a Georgetown-Duke basketball game in January.

Link……..

Here’s his picks on paper……

Hey..he’s got Duke lasting till Nova, huh?

Alright!

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Entertainment, Media, Men, Other Things, Sports, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

Obama’s NCAA Basketball Championship pick’s……….

rs13716_espn03obamakatz

Barack Obama has filled out his NCAA bracket, and the president thinks Kanas will survive March Madness and defeat Kentucky to win the title. His Final Four consists of Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky and Villanova.

The president’s bracket is fairly safe, with two 1-seeds and two 2-seeds advancing to the Final Four. The lowest seeded team in his Elite Eight is 3-seed Georgetown.

Last year, Obama correctly picked North Carolina to win the tournament, and he provided commentary during the CBS broadcast of a Georgetown-Duke basketball game in January.

Link……..

Here’s his picks on paper……

Hey..he’s got Duke lasting till Nova, huh?

Alright!

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Entertainment, Media, Men, Other Things, Sports, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

'The Big Short'……Michael Lewis on the Jon Stewart show……about the people that made money on the financial crisis

Michael Lewis

Michael Lewis came on “The Daily Show” last night to talk about his new book, “The Big Short,” about the few investors who bet against subprime loans in 2005, predicting the financial meltdown, and were able to make money off of it. The book highlights one of these investors, a man named Mike Burry, who has a glass eye and Asperger’s syndrome but was still smarter than the rest of Wall Street.

These bets against the market, Lewis said, are important because they are “the only incentive in the system to bring bad news into the system” — most Wall Street investors had “forgotten” that they’d rigged the market, and couldn’t let themselves believe that something catastrophic was going to happen.

The link..……

from the piece…..

‘If you tell a lie long enough…you begin to believe it……..’

‘If the thing you are doing is wrong…you keep going’…….

‘The financial system works when the people who are dicks…are smart’…..

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Counterpoints, Entertainment, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Political Satire, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, The Economy | , , , , | Leave a comment

‘The Big Short’……Michael Lewis on the Jon Stewart show……about the people that made money on the financial crisis

Michael Lewis

Michael Lewis came on “The Daily Show” last night to talk about his new book, “The Big Short,” about the few investors who bet against subprime loans in 2005, predicting the financial meltdown, and were able to make money off of it. The book highlights one of these investors, a man named Mike Burry, who has a glass eye and Asperger’s syndrome but was still smarter than the rest of Wall Street.

These bets against the market, Lewis said, are important because they are “the only incentive in the system to bring bad news into the system” — most Wall Street investors had “forgotten” that they’d rigged the market, and couldn’t let themselves believe that something catastrophic was going to happen.

The link..……

from the piece…..

‘If you tell a lie long enough…you begin to believe it……..’

‘If the thing you are doing is wrong…you keep going’…….

‘The financial system works when the people who are dicks…are smart’…..

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Counterpoints, Entertainment, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Political Satire, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, The Economy | , , , , | Leave a comment

Congress wants to micromanage the Nation's Intelligence Affairs……

When I went to school I learned that the congress passed bills and the executive branch conducted action…….

So I am a little perplexed about why the congress wants to have itself fully briefs on executive actions in the intelligence word……

The current system has the administration advising eight senior Democratic and Republican senators in the House and Senate Intelligence committtee’s, and the Speaker of the House, on most government covert and overt intelligence actions…..that’s the ay it has been since when…..the congress….whicxh can’t keep too many secrets  and ain’t too popular out there wants to have ALL of it members briefed on intelligence matters…..

WTF?…are they for real?

The President has wisely threatened to veto this garbage…

And he should stick to his guns……

If the ‘gang of eight’ congressmen/women are still getting real, factual briefings…… what’s the problem? The other congressmen don’t trust their committee leadership?

There are things that should be closely held in the intelligence world…..

And Congress has enough to do right now besides trying to run the nation’s intelligence business….

Here’s the piece….

House Intelligence Committee Democrats are engaged in a fierce showdown with the White House over lawmakers’ demands for more transparency and oversight of the intelligence community.

President Barack Obama has twice threatened to veto the intelligence authorization bill, first in July of last year, when the committee approved it, and again this week. The White House has argued that the legislation’s new requirements would, in some cases, put American lives at risk.

Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), a senior member of the House Intelligence panel and a key ally of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), rejected the administration’s claims.

“Shame on them,” Eshoo said in an interview. “The president campaigned on the need for more transparency and accountability and better place [than the CIA], which doesn’t have any eyes and ears on its activity except for us here in Congress.”

Eshoo was referring to provisions in the House and Senate intelligence bills that would give the Government Accountability Office legal authority to review practices and operations throughout the intelligence community. The provisions also would allow any congressional committee with jurisdiction on intelligence matters to request a GAO investigation of that activity.

The administration also opposes a provision in the bill establishing an agency inspector general to investigate the anthrax attacks, which the FBI has concluded were planned and committed by the late Dr. Bruce Ivins, acting alone.

But many members of Congress question the FBI’s conclusion, including Rep. Rush Holt (D-N.J.), the former head of the State Department’s Nuclear and Scientific Division of the Office of Strategic Forces, and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), whose office was targeted.

Possibly even more troubling to the White House are provisions in the bills proposing that interrogations of detainees or prisoners in CIA custody be videotaped, as well as the major changes to the congressional notification system.

Obama threatened to veto the bill last summer because of initial changes to the notification system, and spokeswomen for the House Intelligence panel had said that Chairman Silvestre Reyes (D-Texas) had been working with the White House to rewrite the section. But the White House rejected the most recent changes as well.

The bill requires the executive branch — including the CIA and other intelligence agencies — to provide information about covert activities and the “legal authority” under which an intelligence activity is being conducted not merely to the “Gang of Eight” — the Speaker, the House minority leader, the Senate Democratic and Republican leaders and the top Democrat and Republican in both the House and Senate Intelligence committees — but to the full House and Senate Intelligence committees.

More…….

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Law, Media, Men, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates, Women | , , , , | 3 Comments

Congress wants to micromanage the Nation’s Intelligence Affairs……

When I went to school I learned that the congress passed bills and the executive branch conducted action…….

So I am a little perplexed about why the congress wants to have itself fully briefs on executive actions in the intelligence word……

The current system has the administration advising eight senior Democratic and Republican senators in the House and Senate Intelligence committtee’s, and the Speaker of the House, on most government covert and overt intelligence actions…..that’s the ay it has been since when…..the congress….whicxh can’t keep too many secrets  and ain’t too popular out there wants to have ALL of it members briefed on intelligence matters…..

WTF?…are they for real?

The President has wisely threatened to veto this garbage…

And he should stick to his guns……

If the ‘gang of eight’ congressmen/women are still getting real, factual briefings…… what’s the problem? The other congressmen don’t trust their committee leadership?

There are things that should be closely held in the intelligence world…..

And Congress has enough to do right now besides trying to run the nation’s intelligence business….

Here’s the piece….

House Intelligence Committee Democrats are engaged in a fierce showdown with the White House over lawmakers’ demands for more transparency and oversight of the intelligence community.

President Barack Obama has twice threatened to veto the intelligence authorization bill, first in July of last year, when the committee approved it, and again this week. The White House has argued that the legislation’s new requirements would, in some cases, put American lives at risk.

Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), a senior member of the House Intelligence panel and a key ally of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), rejected the administration’s claims.

“Shame on them,” Eshoo said in an interview. “The president campaigned on the need for more transparency and accountability and better place [than the CIA], which doesn’t have any eyes and ears on its activity except for us here in Congress.”

Eshoo was referring to provisions in the House and Senate intelligence bills that would give the Government Accountability Office legal authority to review practices and operations throughout the intelligence community. The provisions also would allow any congressional committee with jurisdiction on intelligence matters to request a GAO investigation of that activity.

The administration also opposes a provision in the bill establishing an agency inspector general to investigate the anthrax attacks, which the FBI has concluded were planned and committed by the late Dr. Bruce Ivins, acting alone.

But many members of Congress question the FBI’s conclusion, including Rep. Rush Holt (D-N.J.), the former head of the State Department’s Nuclear and Scientific Division of the Office of Strategic Forces, and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), whose office was targeted.

Possibly even more troubling to the White House are provisions in the bills proposing that interrogations of detainees or prisoners in CIA custody be videotaped, as well as the major changes to the congressional notification system.

Obama threatened to veto the bill last summer because of initial changes to the notification system, and spokeswomen for the House Intelligence panel had said that Chairman Silvestre Reyes (D-Texas) had been working with the White House to rewrite the section. But the White House rejected the most recent changes as well.

The bill requires the executive branch — including the CIA and other intelligence agencies — to provide information about covert activities and the “legal authority” under which an intelligence activity is being conducted not merely to the “Gang of Eight” — the Speaker, the House minority leader, the Senate Democratic and Republican leaders and the top Democrat and Republican in both the House and Senate Intelligence committees — but to the full House and Senate Intelligence committees.

More…….

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Law, Media, Men, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates, Women | , , , , | 3 Comments

The Secret to Having Happy Employees……..

This is a good piece about having happy employee’s……

And  a great place to work…..

The bosses that can do this I applaud……

There are going to be people who don’t agree with this piece...but I do

I had a small business and he’s right…… one unhappy employee can be big trouble

And I’ve had to do the same thing…cut the infection out before it sprends…it’s no fun…..but the infection was no fun either….

Here’s the piece……


About 10 years ago I was having my annual holiday party, and my niece had come with her newly minted M.B.A. boyfriend. As he looked around the room, he noted that my employees seemed happy. I told him that I thought they were.

Then, figuring I would take his new degree for a test drive, I asked him how he thought I did that. “I’m sure you treat them well,” he replied.

“That’s half of it,” I said. “Do you know what the other half is?”

He didn’t have the answer, and neither have the many other people that I have told this story. So what is the answer? I fired the unhappy people. People usually laugh at this point. I wish I were kidding.

I’m not. I have learned the long, hard and frustrating way that as a manager you cannot make everyone happy. You can try, you can listen, you can solve some problems, you can try some more. Good management requires training, counseling and patience, but there comes a point when you are robbing the business of precious time and energy.

Don’t get me wrong. This doesn’t happen a lot. There’s no joy in the act of firing someone. And it’s not always the employee’s fault — there are many bad bosses out there. Bad management can make a good employee dysfunctional. On the other hand, good management will not always make a dysfunctional employee good. And sometimes people who would be great employees somewhere else just don’t fit your company, whether it is the type of business or the company culture.

In the worst cases, the problem of a bad fit can have a bigger impact than just one employee’s performance. Being in charge does not necessarily mean you are in control, and being in control does not necessarily mean being in charge. Have you ever seen a company or department paralyzed by someone who is unhappy and wants to take hostages? It is remarkable how much damage one person can do. If you haven’t seen it, I suggest you watch “The Caine Mutiny.” Basically, one guy takes apart the ship. He was unhappy. It only takes one.

This is only my opinion. I don’t have a Ph.D., an M.B.A., or even an economics degree. What I do have is a happy company. And that makes me happy. Now I know some people argue that business is about making money, and not everyone has to be happy. That is also an opinion. Everyone has a right to his or her opinion. When you own a company, you also have the right to surround yourself with the people you choose.

I have spent the last year and a half focusing on cutting costs, figuring out how the market has changed, and worrying about the economy. Things seem to be getting better, or perhaps I am just getting used to it.

Either way, I had a good day today. Not because I got a big order, great financial reports or even an employee stopping by to tell me what an awesome boss I am. (That generally doesn’t happen. You have to tell yourself. It’s a boss thing.) I had a great day because I spent most of it walking around the company and appreciating the fact that even after a year and a half of soft sales and cutbacks and furloughs, I have wonderful people working for me. They care. They are committed. They understand the whole customer-staff-company triangle, where all of the legs support each other.

More…….

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Education, Media, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

Electric lines…..Underwater?

[ Laying line in San Francisco for the Trans Bay Cable project, which submerged 33 miles of cable. ]

What will they think of next?

Generating 20 percent of America’s electricity with wind, as recent studies proposed, would require building up to 22,000 miles of new high-voltage transmission lines. But the huge towers and unsightly tree-cutting that these projects require have provoked intense public opposition.

Recently, though, some companies are finding a remarkably simple answer to that political problem. They are putting power lines under water, in a string of projects that has so far provoked only token opposition from environmentalists and virtually no reaction from the larger public.

“The fish don’t vote,” said Edward M. Stern, president of PowerBridge, a company that built a 65-mile offshore cable from New Jersey to Long Island and is working on two more.

The projects have even drawn cautious enthusiasm from some environmental groups that say the new power lines serve their goal of getting the United States to use more renewable power.

“Environmentalists need to be open-minded to technology improvements, and looking at the big picture,” said Phillip Musegaas, program director for Riverkeeper, a New York environmental group focused on the Hudson River.

Mr. Musegaas’s open-mindedness will soon be put to the test, because Transmission Developers, a Toronto company, is proposing to use the Hudson for the most ambitious underwater transmission project yet. Beginning north of the Canadian border, a 370-mile line would run along the bottom of Lake Champlain, down the bed of the Hudson all the way to New York City. It would continue under Long Island Sound to Connecticut.

The project sponsors have only recently begun seeking the numerous permits they need, but if built, it would be one of the longest submarine power cables in the world. It would bring hydroelectricity to the power-thirsty New York City market. It would also break a stalemate; New York has not had a major new overhead power line in 20 years.

If Transmission Developers succeeds with such an ambitious project, other transmission developers are likely to study the underwater strategy to figure out just how far they can take it. Would power lines crossing the Great Lakes make sense? Could underwater cables be used to move renewable power from the windy Great Plains to cities like Chicago?

The cost of putting a cable under water can be lower than burying cables on land, because workers can lay the cables from giant reels, allowing stretches of more than a mile with no splices. The strategy is limited, of course, by the availability of rivers and lakes — they do not go everywhere power developers would like to run new lines. In fact, many of the country’s rivers run north or south, whereas much of the country’s power must move east or west.

And underwater lines are still more expensive than lines on transmission towers. Mr. Stern’s 65-mile cable cost about $600 million, and a 53-mile cable under San Francisco Bay cost about $505 million. Much of the cost in each case is to transform the electricity to direct current, a form that is easier to use in buried cables. Standard lines hung on towers run from $1 million to $4 million a mile, depending on terrain and other factors. If more underwater lines are built, the higher costs would have a small impact on electric bills.

Still, the underwater approach solves some intractable problems. In San Francisco, for example, old power plants that burn natural gas are about to be retired because a new transmission company has succeeded in running a line 33 miles across the San Francisco Bay.

More…….

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Ecology, Government, Media, Other Things, The Economy, Travel, Updates | , | Leave a comment

Daniel…….North Carolina Senate: Democratic Candidates creap closer to Incumbent Senator Richard M. Burr (R-NC)…..

Hello Dog!

A new Statewide Survey in North Carolina from Public Policy Polling shows the Democratic Candidates gaining on Republican Incumbent Senator Richard Mauze Burr (R-NC).

Public Policy Polling Survey

North Carolina Senate 2010

General Election

Richard BurrSen. Michael Bennet
Incumbent Senator Richard M. Burr (R)  41 %
Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall (D)  36 %
Undecided  23 %

Incumbent Senator Richard M. Burr (R)  43 %
Former State Senator J. Calvin “Cal” Cunningham (D)  32 %
Undecided  25 %

Incumbent Senator Richard M. Burr (R)  43 %
Attorney Kenneth W. Lewis (D)  32 %
Undecided  25 %

Job Approvals

Senator Kay Hagan (D)

Approve  31 %
Disapprove  44 %
Not Sure  25 %

Senator Richard M. Burr (R)

Approve  35 %
Disapprove  37 %
Not Sure  28 %

Note: PPP is expected to release Approvals for Governor Beverly Perdue (D) & President Barack Obama (D) tomorrow.

Major Candidates Websites:

http://www.burrforsenate.org/
http://www.elainemarshall.com/
http://www.calfornc.com/home
http://kenlewisforsenate.com/

Full Results including Candidates Favorables can be found here:

http://publicpolicypolling.blogspot.com/

Analysis:

So why is Marshall currently polling best in the General Election? Simply because she has the Highest Name ID. Cunningham will get closer to Burr as he becomes more known to Voters.

Daniel G.

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Daniel G @ PolitcalDog, Government, Media, Men, Politics, Updates, Women | , , , | 4 Comments

Daniel…..Connecticut Senate: Blumenthal still cruising; Big surprise in the Republican Primary as McMahon surges ahead of Simmons acorrding to new Quinnipiac Survey….

Hi Dog!

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) is still cruising to the Senate according to a new Quinnipiac University Survey in the Nutmeg State. What’s really a big, big surprise is that Q-Pac also now finds former WWE CEO Linda McMahon (R-CT) has now toppled former U. S. Rep. Robert “Rob” Simmons (R-CT) by 10 Points. This is a 20-Point Swing in the last 2 months in favor of McMahon. Are these knuckleheads crazy? They can’t nominate McMahon. She’s simply not fit for the Job.

Quinnipiac University Survey

Connecticut Senate 2010

Democratic Primary

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal  81 %
Software Executive Merrick Alpert  6 %
Undecided  13 %

Republican Primary

Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon  44 %
Former U. S. Rep. Robert “Rob” Simmons  34 %
Anti-Tax Activist Peter David Schiff  9 %
Others  1 %
Undecided  12 %


General Election

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (D)  62 %
Former U. S. Rep. Robert “Rob” Simmons (R)  26 %
Others  1 %
Undecided  10 %

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (D)  61 %
Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon (R)  28 %
Others  1 %
Undecided  10 %

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (D)  64 %
Anti-Tax Activist Peter David Schiff (R)  21 %
Others  0 %
Undecided  13 %

Job Approvals

Senator Joseph I. Lieberman (I)

Approve  39 %
Disapprove  54 %
Not Sure  7 %

Senator Christopher J. Dodd (D)

Approve  35 %
Disapprove  58 %
Not Sure  7 %

President Barack Obama (D)

Approve  54 %
Disapprove  42 %
Not Sure  4 %

Major Candidates Websites:

http://www.richardblumenthal.com/
http://merrickforachange.com/
http://www.joinrobsimmons.com/
http://www.linda2010.com/
http://schiffforsenate.com/

Analysis:

Blumenthal will win this no doubt about it. What’s more troubling is that my Party could nominate someone with ZERO Experience (Linda McMahon)

Daniel G.

Daniel…Three reasons…..Money……Money…Money

March 17, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Daniel G @ PolitcalDog, Family, Government, Media, Men, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Polls, Updates | , , , , | 3 Comments