Archive for February 12th, 2011

Can The American People Afford Two More Years Of President Barack Obama?–No–Tea Party Time–April 15, 2011–Washington D.C.–Videos

Posted on February 12, 2011. Filed under: Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Farming, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Programming, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Science, Taxes, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , |

“…Two years ago, Barack Obama was inaugurated as president of the United States .  Are you better off today than you were two years ago? Numbers don’t lie, and here are the data on the impact he has had on the lives of Americans:

January 2009

TODAY

% chg Source

Avg. retail price/gallon gas in U.S.

$1.83

$3.104

69.6%

1

Crude oil, European Brent (barrel)

$43.48

$99.02

127.7%

2

Crude oil, West TX Inter. (barrel)

$38.74

$91.38

135.9%

2

Gold: London (per troy oz.)

$853.25

$1,369.50

60.5%

2

Corn, No.2 yellow, Central IL

$3.56

$6.33

78.1%

2

Soybeans, No. 1 yellow, IL

$9.66

$13.75

42.3%

2

Sugar, cane, raw, world, lb. fob

$13.37

$35.39

164.7%

2

Unemployment rate, non-farm, overall

7.6%

9.4%

23.7%

3

Unemployment rate, blacks

12.6%

15.8%

25.4%

3

Number of unemployed

11,616,000

14,485,000

24.7%

3

Number of fed. employees, ex. military (curr = 12/10 prelim)

2,779,000

2,840,000

2.2%

3

Real median household income (2008 v 2009)

$50,112

$49,777

-0.7%

4

Number of food stamp recipients (curr = 10/10)

31,983,716

43,200,878

35.1%

5

Number of unemployment benefit recipients (curr = 12/10)

7,526,598

9,193,838

22.2%

6

Number of long-term unemployed

2,600,000

6,400,000

146.2%

3

Poverty rate, individuals (2008 v 2009)

13.2%

14.3%

8.3%

4

People in poverty in U.S. (2008 v 2009)

39,800,000

43,600,000

9.5%

4

U.S. rank in Economic Freedom World Rankings

5

9

n/a

10

Present Situation Index (curr = 12/10)

29.9

23.5

-21.4%

11

Failed banks (curr = 2010 + 2011 to date)

140

164

17.1%

12

U.S. dollar versus Japanese yen exchange rate

89.76

82.03

-8.6%

2

U.S. money supply, M1, in billions (curr = 12/10 prelim)

1,575.1

1,865.7

18.4%

13

U.S. money supply, M2, in billions (curr = 12/10 prelim)

8,310.9

8,852.3

6.5%

13

National debt, in trillions

$10.627

$14.052

32.2%

14

Just take this last item:  In the last two years we have accumulated national debt at a rate more than 27 times as fast as during the rest of our entire nation’s history.  Over 27 times as fast!  Metaphorically, speaking, if you are driving in the right lane doing 65 MPH and a car rockets past you in the left lane 27 times faster . . . it would be doing 1,755 MPH!  This is a disaster!

Sources:

(1) U.S. Energy Information Administration; (2) Wall Street Journal; (3) Bureau of Labor Statistics; (4) Census Bureau; (5) USDA; (6) U.S. Dept. of Labor; (7) FHFA; (8) Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller; (9) RealtyTrac; (10) Heritage Foundation and WSJ; (11) The Conference Board; (12) FDIC; (13) Federal Reserve; (14) U.S. Treasury …”

 

No, the American people cannot afford two more years of President Obama.

 

Time for a tea party in Washington D.C. on April 15, 2011 to pressure both the Democratic and Republican political establishment to balance the budget and pass the FairTax.

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Microsoft and Nokia Partnership On Smart Phones–Videos

Posted on February 12, 2011. Filed under: Blogroll, Communications, Computers, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Mobile Phones, Technology, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

“….Look what we’ve found! This is the first image you’ll see anywhere of the early fruit of Microsoft and Nokia’s budding new partnership. We have it on good authority that the technicolor phones on show are conceptual devices produced by the two companies. You shouldn’t, therefore, go jumping to conclusions about retail hardware just yet, but hearts should be warmed by the familiarity of Nokia’s new design — the shape of these handsets is somewhere between its recent N8 and C7 Symbian devices and there is, as usual for Nokia, a choice of sprightly colors. The trio of keys adorning the new concept’s bottom give away its Windows Phone 7 ties, but also remind us that the N8 and E7 are highly unlikely to receive any WP7 upgrade love. The best part about this whole discovery, however, might be that it confirms Steve Ballmer’s assertion that the engineers of both companies have “spent a lot of time on this already.” So, who else is excited about owning an Engadget-blue Microkia device? …”

http://www.engadget.com/2011/02/11/exclusive-nokias-windows-phone-7-concept-revealed/

Nokia and Microsoft Windows Phone 7 partnership (HD)

 

Can Nokia Make A Comeback?

 

Nokia and Microsoft partnership – Windows Phone handsets to follow

Nokia and Microsoft Press Conference

 

Nokia / Microsoft Press Conference Q&A Steve Ballmer + Stephen Elop (1)

 

Nokia / Microsoft Press Conference Q&A Steve Ballmer + Stephen Elop (2)

 

Nokia commits to Windows Phone and Microsoft

Nokia’s comeback strategy: strategic alliance with Microsoft

by Stuart Dredge

“…The key details: Nokia will adopt Windows Phone as its ‘principal smartphone strategy, innovating on top of the platform in areas such as imaging, where Nokia is a market leader’ according to the announcement.

Symbian isn’t being killed off: instead, it will become ‘a franchise platform’, as Nokia looks to ‘retain and transition’ the existing base of 200 million Symbian users, while selling 150 million more Symbian devices around the world.

And MeeGo? That becomes ‘an open-source, mobile operating system project’ with ‘increased emphasis on longer-term market exploration of next-generation devices, platforms and user experiences’. But Nokia says it still plans to ship a ‘MeeGo-related product’ later this year.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=006l0xBE6Ko&feature=related

More competition in the smartphone business space will lead to better quality products at lower prices.

I think the partnership is a great opportunity for both companies.

Background Articles and Videos

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop rallies troops in brutally honest ‘burning platform’ memo? (update: it’s real!)

Hello there,

There is a pertinent story about a man who was working on an oil platform in the North Sea. He woke up one night from a loud explosion, which suddenly set his entire oil platform on fire. In mere moments, he was surrounded by flames. Through the smoke and heat, he barely made his way out of the chaos to the platform’s edge. When he looked down over the edge, all he could see were the dark, cold, foreboding Atlantic waters.

As the fire approached him, the man had mere seconds to react. He could stand on the platform, and inevitably be consumed by the burning flames. Or, he could plunge 30 meters in to the freezing waters. The man was standing upon a “burning platform,” and he needed to make a choice.

He decided to jump. It was unexpected. In ordinary circumstances, the man would never consider plunging into icy waters. But these were not ordinary times – his platform was on fire. The man survived the fall and the waters. After he was rescued, he noted that a “burning platform” caused a radical change in his behaviour.

We too, are standing on a “burning platform,” and we must decide how we are going to change our behaviour.

Over the past few months, I’ve shared with you what I’ve heard from our shareholders, operators, developers, suppliers and from you. Today, I’m going to share what I’ve learned and what I have come to believe.

I have learned that we are standing on a burning platform.

And, we have more than one explosion – we have multiple points of scorching heat that are fuelling a blazing fire around us.

For example, there is intense heat coming from our competitors, more rapidly than we ever expected. Apple disrupted the market by redefining the smartphone and attracting developers to a closed, but very powerful ecosystem.

In 2008, Apple’s market share in the $300+ price range was 25 percent; by 2010 it escalated to 61 percent. They are enjoying a tremendous growth trajectory with a 78 percent earnings growth year over year in Q4 2010. Apple demonstrated that if designed well, consumers would buy a high-priced phone with a great experience and developers would build applications. They changed the game, and today, Apple owns the high-end range.

And then, there is Android. In about two years, Android created a platform that attracts application developers, service providers and hardware manufacturers. Android came in at the high-end, they are now winning the mid-range, and quickly they are going downstream to phones under €100. Google has become a gravitational force, drawing much of the industry’s innovation to its core.

Let’s not forget about the low-end price range. In 2008, MediaTek supplied complete reference designs for phone chipsets, which enabled manufacturers in the Shenzhen region of China to produce phones at an unbelievable pace. By some accounts, this ecosystem now produces more than one third of the phones sold globally – taking share from us in emerging markets.

While competitors poured flames on our market share, what happened at Nokia? We fell behind, we missed big trends, and we lost time. At that time, we thought we were making the right decisions; but, with the benefit of hindsight, we now find ourselves years behind.

The first iPhone shipped in 2007, and we still don’t have a product that is close to their experience. Android came on the scene just over 2 years ago, and this week they took our leadership position in smartphone volumes. Unbelievable.

We have some brilliant sources of innovation inside Nokia, but we are not bringing it to market fast enough. We thought MeeGo would be a platform for winning high-end smartphones. However, at this rate, by the end of 2011, we might have only one MeeGo product in the market.

At the midrange, we have Symbian. It has proven to be non-competitive in leading markets like North America. Additionally, Symbian is proving to be an increasingly difficult environment in which to develop to meet the continuously expanding consumer requirements, leading to slowness in product development and also creating a disadvantage when we seek to take advantage of new hardware platforms. As a result, if we continue like before, we will get further and further behind, while our competitors advance further and further ahead.

At the lower-end price range, Chinese OEMs are cranking out a device much faster than, as one Nokia employee said only partially in jest, “the time that it takes us to polish a PowerPoint presentation.” They are fast, they are cheap, and they are challenging us.

And the truly perplexing aspect is that we’re not even fighting with the right weapons. We are still too often trying to approach each price range on a device-to-device basis.

The battle of devices has now become a war of ecosystems, where ecosystems include not only the hardware and software of the device, but developers, applications, ecommerce, advertising, search, social applications, location-based services, unified communications and many other things. Our competitors aren’t taking our market share with devices; they are taking our market share with an entire ecosystem. This means we’re going to have to decide how we either build, catalyse or join an ecosystem.

This is one of the decisions we need to make. In the meantime, we’ve lost market share, we’ve lost mind share and we’ve lost time.

On Tuesday, Standard & Poor’s informed that they will put our A long term and A-1 short term ratings on negative credit watch. This is a similar rating action to the one that Moody’s took last week. Basically it means that during the next few weeks they will make an analysis of Nokia, and decide on a possible credit rating downgrade. Why are these credit agencies contemplating these changes? Because they are concerned about our competitiveness.

Consumer preference for Nokia declined worldwide. In the UK, our brand preference has slipped to 20 percent, which is 8 percent lower than last year. That means only 1 out of 5 people in the UK prefer Nokia to other brands. It’s also down in the other markets, which are traditionally our strongholds: Russia, Germany, Indonesia, UAE, and on and on and on.

How did we get to this point? Why did we fall behind when the world around us evolved?

This is what I have been trying to understand. I believe at least some of it has been due to our attitude inside Nokia. We poured gasoline on our own burning platform. I believe we have lacked accountability and leadership to align and direct the company through these disruptive times. We had a series of misses. We haven’t been delivering innovation fast enough. We’re not collaborating internally.

Nokia, our platform is burning.

We are working on a path forward — a path to rebuild our market leadership. When we share the new strategy on February 11, it will be a huge effort to transform our company. But, I believe that together, we can face the challenges ahead of us. Together, we can choose to define our future.

The burning platform, upon which the man found himself, caused the man to shift his behaviour, and take a bold and brave step into an uncertain future. He was able to tell his story. Now, we have a great opportunity to do the same.

Stephen.

http://www.engadget.com/2011/02/08/nokia-ceo-stephen-elop-rallies-troops-in-brutally-honest-burnin/

 

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Egypt–A Nation In Waiting–Videos

Posted on February 12, 2011. Filed under: Blogroll, College, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, history, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Monetary Policy, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Resources, Science, Security, Taxes, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , |

A Nation In Waiting – 4 May 08 – Part 1

 

A Nation In Waiting – 4 May 08 – Part 2

A Nation In Waiting – 4 May 08 – Part 3

 

A Nation In Waiting – 4 May 08 – Part 4

 

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