Saturday, February 5, 2011

Obama betrays the UK by selling them out to the Russians for START treaty.

Obama has always treated traditional US allies as pieces of shit, but this is the lowest I have seen done by an American President.
Information about every Trident missile the US supplies to Britain will be given to Russia as part of an arms control deal signed by President Barack Obama next week.

Defence analysts claim the agreement risks undermining Britain’s policy of refusing to confirm the exact size of its nuclear arsenal.

The fact that the Americans used British nuclear secrets as a bargaining chip also sheds new light on the so-called “special relationship”, which is shown often to be a one-sided affair by US diplomatic communications obtained by the WikiLeaks website.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

SEC leases $400 million in office space without a bidding process.

Who watches the watchdog?
The US Securities and Exchange Commission signed leases for $400m of office space without circulating the contract for competitive bidding, as would normally be required.

In internal papers filed to justify its decision, the SEC said the “unusual and compelling urgency” of its requirements for 900,000 sq ft of space “supports award of the lease without full and open competition”

The SEC issued the justification for the leases last summer, two weeks after Congress passed the Dodd-Frank financial reform act, which authorised lawmakers to double the agency’s budget by 2015.

However, no extra money has been forthcoming from Congress and, facing a constrained budget, the SEC is now trying to dispose of two-thirds of the empty 900,000 sq ft on its hands.

Fiat 500 coming to America! Again! lord help us all..

Its starts off with a glowing writeup in USATODAY.
The 500, a Fiat signature model, will begin to test that strategy.

The goal is to gently re-establish Fiat in the U.S. over several years. Though the 500 is cute and attention-grabbing, Fiat wants to avoid it being seen as a fad.

"We need to weave ourselves into American culture," said Laura Soave, the executive tagged to head Fiat-brand marketing in the U.S., at a San Diego press event for the 2012 Fiat 500.

To do that, Fiat intends to portray itself as a purveyor of sophisticated European design, Soave says. Think Italian fashion models, gelato and designer leather goods, not red-checked tablecloths and the cast of Jersey Shore.


Buried in the article is this tidbit.
Reliability remains a brand issue, judging from J.D. Power and Associates' 2010 Vehicle Ownership Satisfaction Study in Europe. Fiats were rated third-worst among car brands sold in France, second-worst in Britain and at the bottom in Germany.

Though Fiat's surveys show most U.S. consumers have little memory of the brand's last foray here, executives beefed up the warranty to try to allay reliability concerns. The 500 will come with a four-year or 50,000-mile, bumper-to-bumper warranty. Routine maintenance is free for three years.

Monday, January 31, 2011

NFL players union urges players to go on Obamacare

The whole gist of the message is amusing because you can tell at least to the union the majority of players have zero money management and are afraid when they go on strike it will be over quickly because broke players will demand quick action.

With a lockout a virtual certainty come March 4 (absent a new labor deal), the union has sounded the alarm to all players.

The NFLP issued on Friday guidelines for all players, which become effective today and will last until a new labor deal is struck.

The guidelines begin with some decidedly low-tech advice.

“Make a list of everyone who owes you money,” the e-mail to all players recommends. “Turn up the heat and call in all those IOUs now so you can add to the balance in your lockout preparedness fund.”

The e-mail does not urge the players to refrain from breaking or threatening to break any bones in order to get their money. Hopefully, most of them will realize that this isn’t an acceptable collection technique.

“Take control of your cash and steer clear of these 5 Most Common and Harmful Money Mistakes,” the e-mail then explains, including a link to a secure site that players can access via password. “Mistakes can be catastrophic during this time where your finances are already vulnerable.”

Finally, the message suggests that the players “[l]ook ahead for alternative health insurance coverage if the lockout leaves you exposed,” and explains that they should “[t]ry to leverage the coverage with either your spouse’s employer-sponsored health plan or take advantage of the new healthcare legislation that enables you to gain coverage on your parent’s health insurance up to age 26.”

In English, the union wants the players to see if they can get onto someone else’s insurance. If that’s not an option, the players will be permitted to purchase ongoing health insurance for up to 18 months, under the COBRA laws.

If the fight becomes about money, the players union will lose even faster. No one gives a damn about rich players whining for more money and how they can't afford living on six figure salaries.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

NYTIMES - Record Level of Stress Found in College Freshmen. Wussies

The under 30 whiny wussy politically correct everyone is special pampered generation can't deal with college. What is going to happen to these morons when they get into the real world and no one is kissing their ass?

The emotional health of college freshmen — who feel buffeted by the recession and stressed by the pressures of high school — has declined to the lowest level since an annual survey of incoming students started collecting data 25 years ago.

In the survey, “The American Freshman: National Norms Fall 2010,” involving more than 200,000 incoming full-time students at four-year colleges, the percentage of students rating themselves as “below average” in emotional health rose. Meanwhile, the percentage of students who said their emotional health was above average fell to 52 percent. It was 64 percent in 1985.

Every year, women had a less positive view of their emotional health than men, and that gap has widened.

Campus counselors say the survey results are the latest evidence of what they see every day in their offices — students who are depressed, under stress and using psychiatric medication, prescribed even before they came to college.

While first-year students’ assessments of their emotional health were declining, their ratings of their own drive to achieve, and academic ability, have been going up, and reached a record high in 2010, with about three-quarters saying they were above average.

“Students know their generation is likely to be less successful than their parents’, so they feel more pressure to succeed than in the past,” said Jason Ebbeling, director of residential education at Southern Oregon University. “These days, students worry that even with a college degree they won’t find a job that pays more than minimum wage, so even at 15 or 16 they’re thinking they’ll need to get into an M.B.A. program or Ph.D. program.”

Other findings in the survey underscore the degree to which the economy is weighing on college students.

“Paternal unemployment is at the highest level since we started measuring,” said John Pryor, director of the Cooperative Institutional Research Program at U.C.L.A.’s Higher Education Research Institute, which does the annual freshman survey. “More students are taking out loans. And we’re seeing the impact of not being able to get a summer job, and the importance of financial aid in choosing which college they’re going to attend.”

“We don’t know exactly why students’ emotional health is declining,” he said. “But it seems the economy could be a lot of it.”

For many young people, serious stress starts before college. The share of students who said on the survey that they had been frequently overwhelmed by all they had to do during their senior year of high school rose to 29 percent from 27 percent last year.