Archive for October, 2009

http://newsroom.blogs.cnn.com/2009/10/05/unemployment-what%e2%80%99s-to-blame/

Unemployment: What’s to Blame?

Posted: 08:44 AM ET

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan predicts U.S. unemployment could hit 10%.  Currently the nation’s unemployment rate is at 9.8%.

So, what do you think is most responsible from the worsening employment picture: a failed stimulus package, an economy much worse than we knew, employers cutting deeper and hiring more slowly than expected, or something else all together.

Leave us a comment. We’ll share some of them on air in the CNN Newsroom, 11am ET — 1pm ET

 

So there we are.  A picture and a set of points on why we are where we are with unemployment.  Now what about this idea.

First, there is an issue of Greed.  A small percentage of the global population has accumulated a massive amount of wealth.  I am not here to judge the right or wrong of how they or their ancestors acquired the wealth.  I am here to suggest looking forward. 

  1. 100 million dollars a year as a salary to hedge the price of gasoline and contribute to raising the profits and consumer costs associated with oil.
  2. $17.2 million to successful sell Visa inc, to the market, earning bankers a significant return.
  3. Numerous excesses that programs like Nip/Tuck mimic for Wall Street millionaires.
  4. A stock market that has a curve that simply should not have been allowed.  Long term prudent economic management is essential.

 Ponder this.  If equities is suppose to represent the inherent stability of the corporations that employ our neighbors; what happened starting in 2000 and culminating in the bear Stearns collapse in 2007.  Is Wall Street unravelling the growth that began in 1982 and went into a hyperactive phase in 1995, and simply correcting itself. 

What next should represent a step change in how we think about governance, compensation, risk, responsibility and morality.

 What I think a lot of us forget is that our society evolved over millennium and here we are thinking we are so important.  What is important, is being faithful to a common morality, and making sure that we leave something better for our children. 

I agree with the Dali Lama, all we want is peace and happiness.

So what next?

  1. Cap salaries for the rich at 2 million per year.
  2. Institute a managed health system that still uses the concept of insurance and hedging risk to fund our healthcare system.  
  3. Introduce a health management system, with a basement for those that cannot afford even the most basic plan.
  4. Re-introduce exercise in the school system and subsidize community gyms and recreational facilities.
  5. Re-introduce the luxury tax for non essentials over $30,000 and on things that are not good for you or are excessive.  Say anything not associated with your food,  transportation and housing.
  6. Focus on better educating the family practitioners, gynecologists, internist and pediatricians so that they do a much better triage and assessment of appropriate care given available resources with fear of reprisal for taking risks.  If necessary, require an additional year of service at a teaching hospital earning a reasonable income say $120,000.
  7. Do a lot of what Congress is already talking about
    1. Strengthen the VA hospital and medical care system
    2. Do not mess with Medicare or Medicaid, until the new system is in place.  Let the people move to the free market approach.
    3. Do not create a Government run insurance system.  Yes to creating a open market, knock down state borders and promote re-introduction of the original Blue Cross Blue Shield concept of a co-operative not for profit solution
  8. Focus on regulating the quality of care with a no one left behind principle.
  9. Keep the insurance companies out of setting fees.  Manage thje cost of the healthcare system by focusing on competition.  The patient is the client and is to be saught after without offensive advertising.
  10. Mandate a National Id card keying off the social insurance number.  Combine it on the Drivers license, as a day one requirement.
  11. Focus as a corporate priority on employment being the key indicator of success.  Begin discussions on Right to Work legislation and stimulating more humane approach to managing down costs in a period of economic recession.  Reduce executive wages well before the first person can be let go, without cause.
  12. Merge all the work in the fields of governance, risk and regulation into a replacement bill.
  13. I could go on.

From Nothing Something

In an apologetics I was asked to question the idea that something came from nothing.

This is what I have to believe if I am going to listen to the Atheists and ACLU.

Then I thought about Creation and Intelligent Design.  Oh how much simplerit to believe than these Macro Environmental facts that cannot be backed up with data explains it all.  There is much to accept if you are going to believe out of the Big Bang and Chaos; time would produce a single cell.  Then from that single cell produce the abundance of life forms that have and do exist.

255 proteins must magically appear in one place at the exact right time,

Before we can start thinking about things like DNA

The New York Times, in the previous post, looks at the issue from the obvious perspective.  The result is as one would expect.  Remember when France first introduced smart cards 1984or mandated then back in 1992 and the acceptance nightmare.

In the past I have written on the idea - 

Push PCI/EMV into one coherent electronic and secure smart card reader and PIN Pad. 

Mandate all new 1 July 2010; with the understanding that the reality -  every piece of equipment will be replaced in a reasonable period, say 7 to 10 years. 

VARs should easily be able to do that.

The incremental ($8/device) on the device side goes down over time, as equipment becomes more affordable.

On the system side, most international providers have a solid EMV implementation they can port over to the US platform over that same 7 year time frame. 

At the Network switches, gateways and IPSPs; data formats should be changed sooner, say three years from day one.

Issuers can then decide, when to embrace one  global two factor authentication solution; using contact and contact-less EMV  cards to support card authentication [Factor 1] and card holder verification processes (eg. Chip and PIN) [Factor 2] . 

Biometrics were understood when EMV was created.  The mechanisms are in place to introduce an agreed, more secure, biometric verification process [Factor 3].

The NYTimes understands what EMV is

So why not go ahead, do contact ISO7614 and contactless cards ISO14442 for 1.75 a piece.  then merge 15+ cards to a few. Save 11*$.025 = 2.75 per person. or 1.100 Billion less cards as pollutants

Could U.S. consumers spur adoption of EMV in U.S.?

Tracy Kitten

• 01 Oct 2009

As the rest of the world wraps its migration to EMV/chip-and-PIN technology, Americans traveling overseas are running into mag-stripe disadvantages.

This week, travel reporter Michelle Higgins of The New York Times writes that U.S. cardholders traveling abroad are getting turned away by some merchants, since mag-stripe readers are quickly becoming things of the past in every corner of the globe except the United States.

Though EMVCo., which oversees and spearheaded the EMV shift, has said from the beginning that all chip cards and readers would continue to also read mag-stripes, many merchants are reluctant to accept mag-stripes, since they can be held liable if card information is skimmed or compromised. And because magnetic stripes are relatively easy to copy compared with chip-and-PIN technology, accepting mag-stripe transactions potentially opens the door for fraud.

The problem is that most U.S. consumers have not been informed by their financial institutions about potential transaction problems when traveling overseas. Most, in fact, have no idea what EMV or chip-and-PIN technology is.

Twenty-two countries, including most of Europe, Mexico, Brazil and Japan, have adopted EMV technology, according to the Smart Card Alliance. About 50 other countries, including China, India and most of Latin America, are in various stages of migrating over the next two years.

Last year Canada began rolling out chip-and-PIN cards and plans to stop accepting mag-stripe cards at ATMs after 2012 and at POS terminals after 2015.