Morning Media Summary


Are texting and Facebook worse for teens than TV?:
“Which raises an interesting question: Is Facebook really worse for teenagers’ brains than the mindless reruns of “Gilligan’s Island” and “The Brady Bunch” that their parents consumed growing up”

China dethrones US, makes World’s fastest supercomputer:
“China has replaced United States as the maker of the world’s fastest supercomputer.”

Silver Tail Systems Receives Strategic Investment from CIA’s Venture Capital Arm:
“Silver Tail Systems, a provider of fraud prevention solutions for Web sites, received solid validation of its products and business model this week. The company has entered into a strategic investment and development agreement with In-Q-Tel (IQT), the not-for-profit, venture capital arm of the CIA.”

Sweet bypass for student finger scanner:
“But a litany of fingerprint scanners have fallen victim to bypass methods, many of which are explained publicly in detail on the internet. The hacks could potentially be used by students to make replicas of their own fingerprints, or lift those of others from imprints left on the reader.”

Google now second-largest ISP, carries 6.4% of Internet traffic:
“Google is now the second-largest carrier of Internet traffic, according to data released this week by Arbor Networks. But should corporate network managers care about this news?”

Global Warming / Environment / Energy:

(Silly) Hyundai makes green commercial by not driving its car:
“If your car was that energy efficient, you would be able to drive it in the commercial. Sooo maybe your new challenge should be, “How can we create an advertising campaign that makes our product look good instead of pointing out the fact that it contributes to our environment’s slow demise?””

Insurance / Gambling:

States Struggle to Deal With New Gambling Loophole:
“A new form of gambling that combines online betting with brick-n-mortar casinos has been sweeping the nation, and states are struggling to keep up with the legal implications of this hybrid.”

Health / Safety:

Concerns over bedbugs and other pests still have New Yorkers crawling away from public spaces:
“Add to those pests the stink bug, smelly little things that emit a stench when stepped on. They seek shelter in homes during cooler months for warmth.”

Scientists Find ‘Liberal Gene’:
“Researchers have determined that genetics could matter when it comes to some adults’ political leanings.”

Bedbug prompts community college to shut down:
“A student who showed up for class with what is believed to be a bedbug on his clothing prompted the closure today of Community College of Allegheny County’s North Campus in McCandless, sending 3,500 students as well as employees home for the rest of the week.”


Number of German jobless hits 18-year low:
“The number of people looking for a job in Germany has fallen to below the three-million mark, Labor Minister Ursula von der Leyen announced on Wednesday. Unemployment now stands at a seasonally adjusted 7.5 percent. ”

Mercatus Center Financial Markets Working Group Wins Templeton Freedom Award:
“Congratulations to the Mercatus Center for its recent recognition with a Templeton Freedom Award for its Financial Markets Working Group (of which I am one of many affiliated scholars). Mercatus won for “Special Achievement by a University-based Center.” From the award announcement:”

The Biden-ism of the Day: Every Great Idea in the past 200-Plus Years Has Required Government to Succeed:
“Joe Biden is like a squirrel on water skis — he never stops being entertaining:.”

Little Willingness to Cut Back Among Those Who Get Government Benefits:
“Of those who do receive government money, just 34% are at least somewhat willing to cut some of their own benefits to reduce the size of the federal budget, with 14% who say they are Very Willing to do so. But 63% are not willing to consider any benefit reductions, including 33% who are Not At All Willing.”

Fed Gears Up for Stimulus:
“The Federal Reserve is close to embarking on another round of monetary stimulus next week, against the backdrop of a weak economy and low inflation—and despite doubts about the wisdom and efficacy of the policy among economists and some of the Fed’s own decision makers.”

Dollar printing feeding China inflation: minister:
“Rampant issuance of dollars by the United States is saddling China with “imported inflation”, Chinese commerce minister Chen Deming was quoted as saying by state media on Wednesday.”

Barack Obama’s dumb ‘Daily Show’ Jon Stewart appearance and the President’s diminishing brand:
“Obama’s handlers were supposed to be smarter than this. They were supposed to use his celebrity strategically to advance his agenda. Instead, they’ve been indiscriminate, carpet-bombing Americans with the man they elected rather than launching communications smart weapons.”

Jon Stewart, President Obama debate on ‘The Daily Show’:
“Chief executive sparred with chief fake-news comedian over the velocity of change Wednesday evening, separated only by a desk designed like a slice of the Capitol dome — and by a gap in perception over the accomplishments of the Obama administration in its first 21 months.”
Elizabeth Warren’s plan to prevent another financial meltdown: crowdsourcing:
“Elizabeth Warren, America’s working-class warrior who Time Magazine-dubbed “Sherriff of Wall Street,” has revealed her strategy
for preventing another catastrophic financial meltdown — the former Harvard Law professor is going to put out an open call to working class America for tips.”


Taking a break from suing states, Obama’s Justice Department wins hundreds of awards from itself:
“They involved included employees honored for distinguished service, lifetime service, exceptional service, cooperative service, excellence in legal advice, information technology, management, handling of legislation, appeals services, asset forfeiture, fraud fighting, legal services, dispute resolution and for being a good new employee.”

Boxer faces ethics complaint for telling teachers to send students to work for campaign:
“In a close election race against former Hewlett-Packard executive
Carly Fiorina, California Democrat Sen. Barbara Boxer is facing new ethics complaints over asking teachers to send their students to work for her campaign.”


Watchdog Warns SEIU Contract for Nevada Voting Machines Poses ‘Fraud’ Concern:
“A conservative watchdog group is calling on Nevada officials to intervene to ensure SEIU workers who operate one county’s voting machines don’t skew the results to boost their endorsed candidate, Senate Majority Leader
Harry Reid. ”

Transportation/ Land Use:

Eminent Domain Shenanigans:
“Five years ago, in the landmark property rights case of Kelo v. New London, the Supreme Court upheld the forced transfer of land from various homeowners by finding that “economic development” qualifies as a public purpose for purposes of satisfying the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause. In doing so, however, the Court reaffirmed that the government may not “take property under the mere pretext of a public purpose, when its actual purpose was to bestow a private benefit.””