Bob Lutz v. Statistical Analysis →
Just read this article on auto industry legend Bob Lutz, coinciding with his new memoir. He shares a rather unfortunate anecdote that gives readers an idea of how far the data-driven approach can overtake an organization, sometimes to the point of insanity. It’s apparent that Lutz has little appreciation of “bean counters”, and while I am one of them, I can’t argue...
Higher salaries = lower costs? →
Saturday’s N&O features a report on NC House Speaker Tillis’ decision to significantly raise salaries in select staff positions. Speaker Tillis claims these raises are part of an overall strategy that will reduce net costs of House chamber operations. The Speaker and the N&O are in dispute over whether money is being saved or not so far. If the N&O already hasn’t, it...
US Marshall/Nash Sheriff Shot & Killed in Kinston... →
Nash County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Warren “Sneak” Lewis, was assigned to the Eastern North Carolina Fugitive Task Force and the US Marshals.
Microcarbonated beer? Seriously, Molson! →
Don’t make me pull John Candy’s greatest anti-Canadian statement from the archive (not to mention one of Michael Moore’s few funny jokes).
Honestly, a 1.4% one-day increase in crude oil... →
If lack of supply was the issue, the price would have gone up a minimum 3-5%.
US Senate upholds Fed Reserve cap on debit card... →
“Fixing a problem” with a worse situation.
NC House approves counseling requirement, waiting... →
Currently, North Carolina has among the least restrictive abortion laws in the US. This legislation would bring them in line with most other states.
Highlights from FRB's Beige Book (Richmond) →
“Economic activity has been sending increasingly mixed signals since our last report.” Manufacturing seeing a “cooling” of activity, compared to first quarter growth Some production disruptions created by earthquake in Japan (automotive) Customers resisting price increases, despite substantial increases in raw material costs Slowdown in retail sales growth, driven by...
Highlights form FRB's Beige Book (National) →
Economic expansion continues, though pace is slowing in several districts (NYC, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago) Consumer spending is up, with satisfactory retail inventories and growth in some districts toward luxury goods Consumer spending also (negatively) impacted by rising food and fuel costs Vehicle sales continue to improve, though not the case in the Northeast; overall shift toward...
CFOs skittish on hiring, growth →
Data from the Duke/CFO survey can be found at http://www.cfosurvey.org/. A press release/summary of their most recent findings can be found at http://www.cfosurvey.org/11q3/PressRelease.pdf. US CFO optimism for the economy declined from 61% last quarter to 57% Asian optimism (57%) beat Chinese optimism for the first time in the history of the survey US CFOs only see a minor increase in...
N&O does good job describing how sausage is made... →
It’s a pretty straightforward assessment of how five NC House Democrats worked out a deal to “veto-proof” the GOP’s budget bill.
More research shows falling dollar & QE2... →
80% of Stockton, CA general fund budget goes to... →
No wonder they’re considering bankruptcy
Army General Martin Dempsey, Iraq Vet, nominated... →
A strong choice, and perhaps the best available. I’ll leave it at that.
Church gets $4k Fine for Violating Tree Pruning... →
This is not an ideal situation for Charlotte officials. I don’t agree with the regulation, or the fine. However, I do believe local governments deserve freedom to have these regulations, if the citizenjs support them. One way to correct a root problem in this case? Institute a “sunset clause” on all local regulations. Even if all their Council does is renew it every 4-5 years,...
(For Memorial Day) To Honor by Leading
To Honor by Leading by Kenneth Hunter (May 30, 2011) “They died that you and I might live; they suffered untold pain; Shall we united keep the faith, or have they died in vain?’ Those words of memorial for the fallen are attributed in a book I have to former Kansas City Mayor, H. Roe Bartle. On the same page, one finds the start of a list of 169 men, Brothers of the Fraternity Mr. Bartle and I...
Tool-Kit for Local Disasters?
The more I follow the constant stream of updates from Joplin (who are doing a great job w/them), I wonder if it there’s enough case study and creative thought on the subject to develop a rapid-response administrative tool-kit for situations where local governments must adapt their operations with respect to enabling the fastest possible recovery. For example, Joplin regulations require...
Shameful Local Park Behavior, Part 53...
It’s not even 12 Noon on Saturday, and the parks are already trashed. It doesn’t help that someone let their dog crap in the playground area & didn’t clean it up. I’m sick & tired of the lack of individual responsibility. It only serves to give the elites the ability to limit the liberty of everyone, including those among us who are responsible.
Some Dems in Congress are actually supporting a... →
As a local employee in the NC statewide system, I contribute 6% of my pay to my pension. Asking Fed employees to contribute more than the 1% they current give to FERS makes a lot of sense, especially when it comes to reducing the unfunded liability.