Wotka World Wide

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Scary. The left-leaning 9th Circuit affirmed the government's right to invade your privacy and track you with GPS devices with no warrant. Looks like this is another issue the Supreme Court will have to rectify.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Will Jerry Brown's secret pension hurt him in the CA governor's race? Roger Simon seems to think so:

This mysterious fund whose beneficiaries you are not allowed to know about (even though you are paying for them) is called the Legislators’ Retirement System. It was supposed to have been reformed, but evidently it wasn’t. Who’s responsible for that little oversight, I’d like to know.

If Jerry Brown were a public official worth re-electing, not only would he completely disclose everything about his pension at this point, he would also call for a new law that makes all — and I mean all — publicly-financed pensions totally transparent.

We’re paying for them. We have a right to know who is getting them and how much they are getting. It’s so laughably obvious, it’s astounding there isn’t such an ironclad law already.

If it doesn't, the people of California deserve everything they are getting.
BP Deepwater Horizon Spill by the numbers.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Does the federal government via the FHA really need to subsidize the New York City condo market with government backed loans? They will now be available for "rich New York City buyers [who] can now borrow 96.5% of the price of a new $800,000-$3 million condo and have their loans insured by the government". Never mind the fact that government subsidies helped wreck the housing market in the first place... And will this guaranteed loan really have an effect on the rich people fleeing New York to avoid the approximately 40% cumulative tax rate? I wonder what abandoning the rent control policies would do to the market... Unfortunately when things are not working right the impulse of those in charge is to create more government interference, not less.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

GE CEO Jeff Immelt scolded NBC reporters for reporting negatively on President Obama in early 2009. Who would have thought it? I wonder what former CEO Jack Welch thinks about Immelt's moves to politicize NBC reporting, and GE in general? GE's share price does not reflect well on his efforts. Neither do the ratings at NBC and MSNBC.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

The Washington Post recently had an excellent expose titled Top Secret America, on the intelligence community that has sprung up in the post-9/11 environment. And their findings are pretty shocking, both for the scope of the growth in far-flung intelligence agencies but also for the lack of cohesion and communication between the networks that is still preventing the sharing of useful intelligence, which of course was an original cause of 9/11. Here are just a few of the things that the review uncovered:

* Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.

* An estimated 854,000 people, nearly 1.5 times as many people as live in Washington, D.C., hold top-secret security clearances.

* In Washington and the surrounding area, 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001. Together they occupy the equivalent of almost three Pentagons or 22 U.S. Capitol buildings - about 17 million square feet of space.

Read the whole thing.