Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Change 2.0

There is no doubt now about what season it is.Canadian air has started to flow into the Mid-Atlantic region.Though it isn't bone-chilling,it's cool enough for a sweater or light jacket-at least in the mornings.Hopefully the mosquitoes are done for now.We've all had quite enough of those vicious critters.Some furnaces have been turned on,and thoughts are turning to buying a pumpkin for the porch,if you haven't grown one yourself.

Gold Star Families Honored

The White House Commission on Remembrance hosted its fourth annual salute to Gold Star families-those who have lost a member to war-on the west lawn of the Capitol Saturday.About 2,000 families whose members died in Iraq and Afghanistan were honored.Attending were Admiral Michael Mullen,Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,and General George W. Casey,Jr.,Army Chief of Staff and himself a Gold Star family member,his father having been killed in the Vietnam war.Each motherless or fatherless child received a gold medallion on a ribbon lanyard.Many of them were under 10 years old.The Armed Forces Color Guard paraded the 50 state flags,and Admiral Mullen,a frequent visitor to graves at Arlington National Cemetery,shook hands and spoke with the Gold Star sons and daughters.They have become so special to their nation in these historic times.

Goldman Sachs Upgrades Refiners

Goldman Sachs has upgraded the oil refining sector.Oil will go up to 85 dollars a barrel by the end of the year,Goldman estimates.Oil demand will recover through the end of 2010.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Cosmetics Executive Honored

Leonard Lauder was honored Tuesday at the U.S. Navy Memorial's 2009 Lone Sailor Awards Dinner in Washington,D.C.Mr.Lauder,Chairman Emeritus of the Estee Lauder Companies,was recognized for his service to country and community.A graduate of the Wharton School and Columbia University,Mr.Lauder was a Navy officer in the Supply Corps,receiving the Distinguished Alumni Award.
Mr.Lauder said he believed in the U.S. Navy, and he believed in this nation.In the Navy,he met people who were dedicated to this nation.They were all smart.They were better than he was,and he learned from them,Mr.Lauder recalled.He served aboard an aircraft carrier,the USS Leyte(CVS32),and the destroyer USS Charles R Ware(DDH65).One of the greatest lessons he learned in the Navy is,you can take people from all walks of life,train them properly,and make them to be experts in their field.He brought this into his business experience.
Mr.Lauder feels that the Navy was the greatest experience in his life.The best advice he can give anyone about the military:join the Navy!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Special Edition:Cyber Security

Brian Burns,Deputy Chief Information Officer at the Navy Department,addressed the Government 2.0 Best Practices Symposium sponsored by The Potomac Forum.Mr.Burns pointed out the need for social media privacy controls education.Personnel need to be educated about the real threats of sharing personal information online;how to manage the footprint of federal employees;how to apportion information between colleagues and friends;white-listing codes;setting up defaults that need to be more restricted.Draw the line between external and internal,and clear things appropriately with the public affairs office.Use trust zones and virtualization technologies,such as health trust zones and criminal investigations.Tie the objects with the humans who want to use that data.Ascertain what is the content of the data,the context,the security level.Use new technologies to verify the source and users.Consider the endpoint protection of the host and multi-factor ID.

Start with the information.We need to transfer the data.ID the user.Consider the protection of the data and the behavior of the users,looking at them in the context of the tools.The security lags behind the new tool sets.What are the business rules of the community,and how do we put that information out?What are those partitions or layers that are gonna come out as we use those tools?Mr.Burns asked.These aspects of government leadership and technology were as complex as the assembly found them compelling.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Afghan War Startegy

Senior officers have been discussing the Afghan War strategy.Admiral Michael Mullen,Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,says there is a sense of urgency.Time is not on our side.I believe we understand that,and I believe we're gonna regain the initiative.General Stanley McChrystal,theater commander,intends to use the forces under his command to protect the Afghan people.Congress will respond as they see fit.I'm very well aware of the debate.From a military perspective,we have a mission we are doing the very best we can to carry out.

For his part,General McChrystal said the situation is serious,but victory is achievable with the right strategy.Villages can't just be taken;they have to be taken and held.The Afghan government needs to inspire the people and take the lead,General McChrystal added.Yesterday,four U.S. Marines under his command were ambushed and killed while on patrol in eastern Afghanistan.

Early Edition:Triple Upgrade

Danaher has been upgraded by Deutsche Bank;Freidman,Billings and Ramsey;and Bernstein.The industrial conglomerate is based in Washington,D.C.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Poseidon Airborne

The Navy's P8A Poseidon aircraft has begun flight testing.The Boeing product will replace the P3C Orion on long range anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare missions.Based on the commercial 787-800 airframe,it has a crew of nine,a ceiling of 41,000 feet and a speed of 490 knots.The Poseidon will be operational in fiscal 2013.It is armed with torpedoes,mines,bombs and cruise missiles.

Barclays Upgrade

Barclays Capital has upgraded credit card companies American Express,Discover Financial Services and Capital One Financial.They will have 3-5 years of steadily improving earnings and lower default rates,Barclays thinks.