Santa Clara University

SCU in the News: August 28 - September 24, 2010

Report Overview:
Total Clips (234)
Other (234)


Headline Date Outlet Links

Other (234)
Hot New CTAs: What new managers can teach the old pros 09/24/2010 Buy The Rumors Sell The Fact Text View Clip
Judge clears way for Brown execution in California 09/24/2010 Lexington Herald-Leader - Online Text View Clip
California murderer's execution OKd 09/24/2010 Los Angeles Times - Online Text View Clip
Whitman joins Brown in opposing Proposition 23 09/24/2010 San Francisco Chronicle Text View Clip
Meg Whitman joins Jerry Brown against Prop. 23 09/24/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Whitman joins Brown in opposing Prop. 23 09/24/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Google sues rogue prescription drug online advertisers 09/23/2010 CIO - Online Text View Clip
Ignatian Family Teach-In asks Loyola community to reflect on social justice issues 09/23/2010 Greyhound, The Text View Clip
Grassroots movement set out to defeat Prop 23 09/23/2010 KGO-TV Text View Clip
PROBE ON SUFFOLK ETHICS PANEL The details they need to disclose 09/23/2010 Newsday Text
PASTA MARKET SPECIALIZES IN BUDGET-FRIENDLY FAMILY FARE 09/23/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Thousands gather in St. Petersburg to celebrate Catholic saint's relics 09/23/2010 St. Petersburg Times - Online Text View Clip
Santa Clara ranked among nation's best 09/23/2010 USA Today - Online Text View Clip
HOW ABOUT THE JOY OF GARBAGE? THE SYLLABUS FOR THIS COURSE AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY GOES FAR BEYOND WHY RECYCLING IS GOOD, COVERING THE SCIENCE AND CONSEQUENCES OF WHAT HUMANS CON SYSTEM AND DISCARD. 09/22/2010 10 O'Clock News - WJXT-TV, The Text
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 ARN Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 ARN - Online Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 CIO Australia Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 Computerworld Australia Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 Computerworld Australia Text View Clip
Lecture: 'Role of Women in the Catholic Church' 09/22/2010 Fairfield Patch Text View Clip
Colleges are Going Gaga Over Crazy Courses - ParentDish 09/22/2010 ParentDish Text View Clip
Google Sues Allegedly Rogue Prescription Drug Advertisers 09/22/2010 PC World - Online Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers 09/22/2010 Tech World Australia Text View Clip
Title: The Truth about Leadership: The No-fads, Heart-of-the-Matter Facts You Need to Know 09/22/2010 The Nation - Thailand Text View Clip
THERE'S ALSO THE "JOY OF GARBAGE" AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. 09/22/2010 TV 5 News at 11 PM - WNEM-TV Text
Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals 09/21/2010 KLFY-TV - Online Text View Clip
Observers note uncertainty over future of Righthaven/R-J copyright suits 09/21/2010 Las Vegas Sun Text View Clip
CALIFORNIA 09/21/2010 Los Angeles Times Text
Man sentenced to life in prison will get to argue his innocence 09/21/2010 Los Angeles Times - Online Text View Clip
The Maneater - Fewer professors earning tenure 09/21/2010 Maneater - Online Text View Clip
Man sentenced to life in prison will get to argue his innocence 09/21/2010 Morning Call - Online Text View Clip
Wagner College gets community-service laurel 09/21/2010 Staten Island Advance Text
First Capital Names DAcquisto VP, BDO in San Francisco 09/20/2010 ABF Journal Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face tough job market 09/19/2010 Arizona Daily Sun Text View Clip
Job woes hit hard at older workers \ 09/19/2010 Buffalo News Text
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/19/2010 Charlotte Observer - Online Text View Clip
Layoffs harder on workers in their 50s 09/19/2010 Columbus Dispatch - Online Text View Clip
Key call in Ravens-Bengals game wrong 09/19/2010 FOXSports.com Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face steep climb back from layoffs 09/19/2010 Press of Atlantic City Text
Three ethical questions that we should ask of ourselves every day 09/19/2010 Psychology Today - Online Text View Clip
DICK HENNING'S CELEBRITY TALK SHOW 09/19/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/18/2010 Bellingham Herald - Online Text View Clip
UNTESTED: Can college students learn as well on iPads, e-books? 09/18/2010 USA Today - Online Text View Clip
Health group targets McDonald's in new TV spot 09/17/2010 ABC Local - Online Text View Clip
Paul Braund Interview: The Business of Technology and Development | Blog | NextBillion.net | Development through Enterprise 09/17/2010 Development through Enterprise Text View Clip
Jim Brown: NFL, union need to do more 09/17/2010 ESPN.com Text View Clip
Ask Adam: Is Ron Wilson on the firing line? 09/17/2010 Hockey News, The Text View Clip
When good (bad) things happen Religious life in the wake of the investigations 09/17/2010 National Catholic Reporter Text View Clip
LEADERS GATHER, TRY 'TO MAKE SILICON VALLEY A BETTER PLACE' 09/17/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Bush still won't admit guilt at Southern Cal 09/17/2010 Winston-Salem Journal Text View Clip
HE TEACHES ADVERTISING AND COMMUNICATION AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. 09/16/2010 ABC 7 News at 11 PM - KGO-TV Text
This Catholic Life: Making a life in the law still leaves time for Church, family, volunteering 09/16/2010 Catholic San Francisco Text View Clip
Windows into a complex community 09/16/2010 National Catholic Reporter Online Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/16/2010 Republic - Online, The Text View Clip
Brown: More needs to be done by NFL 09/16/2010 San Francisco Chronicle Text View Clip
Autism and the iPad : Laura Shumaker : City Brights 09/16/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Yahoo! 'handicaps' its search ad auctions 09/16/2010 The Register Text View Clip
Craigslist Really Comes Clean: No More "Adult Services" Ever 09/16/2010 Time - Online Text View Clip
Mexico Independence Bicentennial 09/15/2010 Forum - KQED-FM Text View Clip
Two Messages 09/15/2010 Remodeling Text View Clip
Autism and the iPad: Choosing apps for teens and adults : Laura Shumaker : City Brights 09/15/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
AUTISM CENTER ADDS IPADS TO STUDENTS' LEARNING TOOLS 09/15/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
WHEN SABERCATS RETURN, ARBET AGAIN WILL BE COACH 09/15/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
"You and I Are To Become Global Citizens" 09/14/2010 America: The National Catholic Weekly Text View Clip
Comments at meetings to be edited out of broadcasts 09/14/2010 Compton Bulletin Text View Clip
Leadership lessons to live by 09/14/2010 CTV - Online Text View Clip
Leadership lessons to live by 09/14/2010 Globe and Mail - Online, The Text View Clip
Laid Off Workers in Their 50s Face Steep Climb 09/14/2010 Ledger - Online, The Text View Clip
Laid Off Workers in Their 50s Face Steep Climb 09/14/2010 Ledger - Online, The Text View Clip
Your Mind Your Money-Investment Traits 09/14/2010 Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) - Online Text View Clip
Pizarro: Morgan Autism Center using iPads to work with students 09/14/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Pizarro: Morgan Autism Center using iPads to work with students 09/14/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Pathways to Peace in the Middle East: A Perspective 09/14/2010 Tikkun Magazine Text View Clip
Yelp Beats "Deceptive Acts" Claims 09/14/2010 WebProNews.com Text View Clip
Yelp Beats "Deceptive Acts" Claims 09/14/2010 WebProNews.com Text View Clip
The tweet heard 'round the world 09/14/2010 WorldNetDaily Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/13/2010 Belleville News-Democrat - Online Text View Clip
Stuck in Limbo 09/13/2010 Ledger - Online, The Text View Clip
Tips on Seeking a Renewable Energy Degree 09/13/2010 RenewableEnergyWorld.com Text View Clip
BICENTENNIAL HONORS A SHARED HERITAGE 09/13/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Double celebration 09/13/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/13/2010 State - Online, The Text View Clip
Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths 09/13/2010 Sun News - Online, The Text View Clip
Is college worth it? 09/12/2010 RespectDrugs Text View Clip
With two revolutions to celebrate, Mexico wants to share with U.S. 09/12/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
GADGETS CLOSER TO DOING IT ALL\ 09/11/2010 Baltimore Sun Text
Gadgets closer to doing it all 09/11/2010 Orlando Sentinel Text
New plaque salutes top teachers 09/11/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
GADGETS CLOSER TO DOING IT ALL 09/11/2010 Sun Sentinel Text
Web Impostors May Face Prison in California (BusinessWeek) 09/10/2010 ABC Money Text View Clip
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 Alameda Times-Star Text
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 Argus, The Text
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 Contra Costa Times - Online Text View Clip
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 Daily Review, The Text
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 InsideBayArea.com Text View Clip
Flight 93 memorial: 'Is this all there is?' 09/10/2010 MSNBC.com Text View Clip
Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s 09/10/2010 Oakland Tribune Text
Jesuit college fair makes stop in south OC 09/10/2010 Orange County Register Community Newspapers Text View Clip
Two sides coming together 09/10/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
New York Fashion Week with Swimwear Designer Michaela Cawley | VF Daily | Vanity Fair 09/10/2010 VF Daily Text View Clip
A passion for produce 09/10/2010 WNOL-TV - Online Text View Clip
Tickets for school officials raises questions 09/09/2010 Arizona Republic - Online Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Baltimore Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Business Journal Serving Greater Milwaukee - Online Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Business Review - Online Text View Clip
Stop the Presses: Will Copyright Suits Save Newspapers? 09/09/2010 Connecticut Law Tribune Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Dayton Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
Odd studies offer fresh challenges 09/09/2010 Journal Gazette - Online Bureau, The Text View Clip
Odd studies offer fresh challenges Puzzles among area college classes 09/09/2010 Journal Gazette, The Text
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Kansas City Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Program Encourages Entrepreneurs 09/09/2010 KTVU-TV Text View Clip
MILPITAS: Santa Clara University Program Encourages Entrepreneurs 09/09/2010 KTVU-TV - Online Text View Clip
Stop the Presses: Will Copyright Suits Save Newspapers? 09/09/2010 Law.com Text View Clip
Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No 09/09/2010 Merced Sun-Star - Online Text View Clip
Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No 09/09/2010 Modesto Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No 09/09/2010 Modesto Bee, The Text
Where are they now? The champion 1960 Philadelphia Eagles **The 1960 Eagles NFL Championship 09/09/2010 Morning Call Text
Where are they now: The 1960 Philadelphia Eagles 09/09/2010 Morning Call - Online Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Philadelphia Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No 09/09/2010 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 San Francisco Business Times - Online Text View Clip
CONVOLUTED LOVE LIFE IS UNTANGLED 09/09/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board 09/09/2010 Washington Business Journal - Online Text View Clip
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/08/2010 ABC Local - Online Text View Clip
Suing Hurd May Be Hard For HP 09/08/2010 KQED-FM Text View Clip
HP SUES TO BLOCK HURD'S MOVE 09/08/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Court fight erupts over Hurd 09/08/2010 Star Tribune - Online Text View Clip
HP sues ousted CEO Hurd over hiring by rival Oracle 09/08/2010 Washington Post - Online Text View Clip
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/07/2010 Alameda Times-Star Text
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/07/2010 Argus, The Text
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/07/2010 Daily Review, The Text
Social Enterprise All Around: A Look at Noteworthy Events Coming Up | Blog | NextBillion.net | Development through Enterprise 09/07/2010 Development through Enterprise Text View Clip
Mideast peace, Hillcrest Elementary School, legislative perks, municipal consolidation, the Oval Office and stimulus funds for schools 09/07/2010 Journal News - Online Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/07/2010 Ledger - Online, The Text View Clip
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/07/2010 Los Angeles Daily News - Online Text View Clip
Craigslist plays censorship card analysts; Shutting 'adult services' section 'a ploy' 09/07/2010 National Post Text
HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle 09/07/2010 Oakland Tribune Text
Four Ways to Live More Ethically 09/07/2010 Psychology Today - Online Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/07/2010 Sarasota Herald-Tribune - Online Text View Clip
"Multiple Ways to Salvation": Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments 09/06/2010 Academe Text View Clip
Research aims to stop crime before it starts 09/06/2010 Augusta Chronicle Text
Is blocking sex ads a ploy in fight over free speech? 09/06/2010 Bulletin, The Text View Clip
Is blocking sex ads a ploy in fight over free speech? 09/06/2010 Bulletin, The Text View Clip
AAUP to Universities: Tenure Is Not Just for Researchers 09/06/2010 Chronicle of Higher Education - Online, The Text View Clip
First US Muslim college opens in California 09/06/2010 Ekklesia Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Gainesville Sun - Online, The Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Gainesville Sun - Online, The Text View Clip
Some see a ploy as Craigslist blocks sex ads 09/06/2010 Herald-Journal Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Ledger - Online, The Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Lexington Dispatch - Online, The Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 New York Times - Online Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/06/2010 North County Times - Online Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads (Today) 09/06/2010 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Online Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Times-News - Online Text View Clip
Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads 09/06/2010 Tuscaloosa News - Online, The Text View Clip
Craigslist Move to Pull Ads Won't End Fight 09/06/2010 Wall Street Journal Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/05/2010 Belleville News-Democrat - Online Text View Clip
Police working to predict crime 09/05/2010 Charleston Gazette, The Text
Stopping crime before it starts 09/05/2010 Charlotte Observer - Online Text View Clip
School uses anti-bullying app after suicide 09/05/2010 CIO Australia Text View Clip
SECOND DARTMOUTH, THIRD STANFORD, FOURTH SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY, FIFTH ST. M 09/05/2010 Eyewitness News 13 Sunday Morning - WTHR-TV Text
FOURTH, SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. 09/05/2010 Eyewitness News 13 Sunday Morning - WTHR-TV Text
Stopping crime before it starts 09/05/2010 Herald - Online, The Text View Clip
Predictive policing getting serious study 09/05/2010 Knoxville News-Sentinel - Online, The Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/05/2010 Lexington Herald-Leader - Online Text View Clip
Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks? No, only American has clout to make Mideast peace happen 09/05/2010 Quad-Cities Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/05/2010 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
MIDLIFE CRISIS 09/05/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Americans in their 50s especially hard-hit by recession 09/05/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Top exec's mellow style suits Home Depot's roots 09/05/2010 Seattle Times Text
Bringing science into the fight against crime 09/05/2010 Seattle Times Text
Models aim at halting crime before it strikes 09/05/2010 Spokesman-Review - Online, The Text View Clip
Nation's First Muslim College Opens in California [incl. Hatem Bazian] 09/04/2010 Campus Watch Text View Clip
Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals 09/04/2010 Hawaii News Now - Online Text View Clip
Con: Only the U.S. has the clout to make Mideast peace happen 09/04/2010 Janesville Gazette, The Text View Clip
Peace deal would help U.S. elsewhere 09/04/2010 Journal News - Online Text View Clip
Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals 09/04/2010 KSWO-TV - Online Text View Clip
Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals 09/04/2010 News 25 at 10 PM - WEHT-TV Text View Clip
Can crime be predicted? Some police forces are counting on it 09/04/2010 Post-Star - Online, The Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/04/2010 Seattle Times - Online Text View Clip
Stopping crime before it starts 09/04/2010 Seattle Times - Online Text View Clip
Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals 09/04/2010 WSJV-TV - Online Text View Clip
School Uses Anti-Bullying App After Suicide 09/03/2010 CIO Text View Clip
School uses anti-bullying app after suicide 09/03/2010 Computerworld Norge Text View Clip
Commentary: Only the U.S. has the clout to make Mideast peace happen 09/03/2010 McClatchy Company Washington DC Bureau Text View Clip
News Briefs (9/3/10) 09/03/2010 Miami Student, Miami University Text View Clip
School uses anti-bullying app after suicide 09/03/2010 Network World Text View Clip
School Uses Anti-bullying App After Suicide 09/03/2010 PC World - Online Text View Clip
Morgan Autism Center Conference:why you need to be there : Laura Shumaker : City Brights 09/03/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
JitterBook.com taking new learning approach 09/03/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
A passion for produce 09/03/2010 WDBJ-TV - Online Text View Clip
David Friedman: The Machinery of Criminal Defense 09/02/2010 Cato @ Liberty Text View Clip
David Friedman: The Machinery of Criminal Defense by David Boaz 09/02/2010 Cato @ Liberty Text View Clip
The devil Bell knows 09/02/2010 Los Angeles Times - Online Text View Clip
The Record, Stockton, Calif., Tony Sauro column 09/02/2010 Record, The Text
A Simple Recipe for Investors Less Can Often Lead to More 09/02/2010 Wall Street Journal Text View Clip
The devil Bell knows 09/01/2010 Los Angeles Times - Online Text View Clip
Two summers of working with the environment 09/01/2010 Saipan Tribune Text View Clip
Jim Kouzes on developing leaders 09/01/2010 T+D magazine, Training + Development Text View Clip
ENCOUNTERING THE RELIGIOUS OTHER CHALLENGES TO RAHNER'S TRANSCENDENTAL PROJECT 09/01/2010 Theological Studies Text
JESUIT ON THE ROOF OF THE WORLD IPPOLITO DESIDERI'S MISSION TO TIBET 09/01/2010 Theological Studies Text
A Simple Mix of Funds Can Pay Off 09/01/2010 Wall Street Journal - Online Text View Clip
Making the Most of Your College Years 08/31/2010 Bloomberg BusinessWeek - Online Text View Clip
Want to improve your organization? Stick to the (10) fundamentals 08/31/2010 pitchengine Text View Clip
Inland man gets execution date 08/31/2010 Press-Enterprise - Online Text View Clip
HUSH-HUSH BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR 'WOZ 6.0' 08/31/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
WTEN: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports - Raytheon Celebrates Beginning of School Year by Awarding More Than $1 Million in Grants and Scholarships 08/31/2010 WTEN-TV - Online Text View Clip
San Jose man charged with murdering woman 08/30/2010 InsideBayArea.com Text View Clip
Why are so many ethically challenged? 08/30/2010 Psychology Today - Online Text View Clip
Autism: Connecting to resources in Northern California : Laura Shumaker : City Brights 08/30/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
WOMAN FATALLY SHOT; S.J. MAN ARRESTED 08/30/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Pizarro: Big Boy birthday bash for Woz's 60th 08/30/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Young women cranking out 'haul' videos 08/30/2010 Wichita Eagle Text
Young women cranking out 'haul' videos 08/30/2010 Wichita Eagle - Online Text View Clip
Ego is not in Blake's toolbox 08/29/2010 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Text
San Jose man charged with city 16th murder this year 08/29/2010 Contra Costa Times - Online Text View Clip
San Jose man charged with murdering woman 08/29/2010 Oakland Tribune Text
Personal Finance: Before college, kids and parents must have the money talk 08/29/2010 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Personal Finance Before college, kids and parents must have the money talk 08/29/2010 Sacramento Bee, The Text
Election attacks zero in on gifts 08/29/2010 San Francisco Chronicle Text
Attorney general hopefuls zero in on gifts 08/29/2010 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
'DOWNTOWN' CLAIM JUST A WET NOODLE 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
COUNTY LEADERS HAVE EXCUSES, MORE EXCUSES 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News Text
Man charged with San Jose's 16th murder of 2010 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Internal Affairs: It's a family affair in Sunnyvale school board race 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Internal Affairs: It's a family affair in Sunnyvale school board race 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Herhold: San Jose's redevelopment agency celebrates suburban fettuccine 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
San Jose man charged with city 16th murder this year 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
San Jose man charged with murdering woman 08/29/2010 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Truths about leadership: Best-selling author Barry Posner shares the secrets to making a difference 08/28/2010 Business Mirror Text View Clip
Facebook sues start-up Teachbook for using same suffix 08/28/2010 Yugmarg Daily Text View Clip
Santa Clara University student launches letter writing campaign for Hurricane Katrina victims 08/27/2010 KGO-AM Text View Clip


Hot New CTAs: What new managers can teach the old pros | View Clip
09/24/2010
Buy The Rumors Sell The Fact

st year Futures has profiled emerging commodity trading advisors (CTA). Every year is unique, and 2010 has been no different. Last year was tough and 2010 has been difficult and hard to define. The BarclayHedge CTA index is on pace to register only its fifth negative year since 1980 and the first time it would have back to back negative years (though there is a lot of time left).

When reviewing candidates, we look at not only recent performance but also overall performance and the manager's general approach to trading. Because new managers with limited money under management may be more susceptible to volatility, we do not judge drawdowns as harshly as we would more experienced managers, though we do look at it.

Previous “Hot New CTAs” have gone on to great success and some have slipped into obscurity. This is not an endorsement but a review of new talent. We would like to thank all the managers who sent us their documentation. We will do this again next year, so look for our announcements.

Stratford: New fundamental approach

Kevin Benoit's fundamental short-term equity index program is not the first he has run at Stratford Capital Management but it is so different from what he has done in the past that it might as well be.

Benoit started his trading career at Bear Stearns right as the muni bond futures contract launched. Benoit and a partner devised the first arbitrage for the muni bond contract. When he moved to Prudential a couple of years later, he continued to arb the muni bond contract.

“I did all the hedging for their retail and institutional desks and I was trading for my own account,” Benoit says. “I did well and brought some customers into Pru and my customers asked me to go out on my own, so I did.”

Benoit traded a short-term techncial program at Stratford from 1995 to 2005 and produced some eye popping returns including a compound annual return of more than 35%, but decided to end the program after a difficult year in 2005. “The market was brutal, I've done it for 10 years, made pretty good money so I took a couple of years off,” Benoit says.

When he decided to launch a program in 2008 it needed to be different. “I did technicals for 10 years. I wanted to take a different approach, that is why I came back. I could have done technicals again but that is a very crowded trade, so I looked at the fundamentals,” Benoit says.

However, his approach to fundamentals is not typical. He will look at what sectors or individual stocks are leading the major equity indexes and using that information make a directional play on the index. “In the last six weeks semi conductors has been the driving force in the Nasdaq so I have been focused on them,” Benoit says. “Yesterday, the semis were leading on the upside; I took that as a buy signal.”

Benoit trades the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq.

The approach has worked as Stratford is up 62.60% through August after dropping 14.12% in 2009 when financials led the equities. “If you see the market rising and the financials were stuck in the mud or going down, then I would sell the market. I would sell into that strength,” Benoit says. “I use whatever the sector is that is driving the market and I look for anomalies. Either it is leading or it is lagging and that is how I determine which direction I am taking.”

The program has performed well in up and down markets. It sometimes follows the trend and sometimes appears to be countertrend in nature. He did well in the volatile markets of May this year, only losing money on two days and even earning money on May 6 when the flash crash occurred.

Benoit says that what is leading can change often. “Prior to six weeks ago Apple was leading,” he says. The market would open lower and then Apple would move higher, which would trigger a buy signal in the index. “I would be buying in and then the market would move up,” he says.

He takes profits around the time the market matches the move of Apple or the stock of sector that is leading.

“When I have trouble it is when there is either nothing that is leading or lagging or if the futures is leading the market instead of the cash. I try and wait until I see something that gives me a signal. I wait for the market to tell me what to do,” Benoit says.

So far the market had been steering Benoit in the right direction.

For more on Stratford Capital Management including contact information, click here.

This is the 21

st year Futures has profiled emerging commodity trading advisors (CTA). Every year is unique, and 2010 has been no different. Last year was tough and 2010 has been difficult and hard to define. The BarclayHedge CTA index is on pace to register only its fifth negative year since 1980 and the first time it would have back to back negative years (though there is a lot of time left).

When reviewing candidates, we look at not only recent performance but also overall performance and the manager's general approach to trading. Because new managers with limited money under management may be more susceptible to volatility, we do not judge drawdowns as harshly as we would more experienced managers, though we do look at it.

Previous “Hot New CTAs” have gone on to great success and some have slipped into obscurity. This is not an endorsement but a review of new talent. We would like to thank all the managers who sent us their documentation. We will do this again next year, so look for our announcements.

Stratford: New fundamental approach

Kevin Benoit's fundamental short-term equity index program is not the first he has run at Stratford Capital Management but it is so different from what he has done in the past that it might as well be.

Benoit started his trading career at Bear Stearns right as the muni bond futures contract launched. Benoit and a partner devised the first arbitrage for the muni bond contract. When he moved to Prudential a couple of years later, he continued to arb the muni bond contract.

“I did all the hedging for their retail and institutional desks and I was trading for my own account,” Benoit says. “I did well and brought some customers into Pru and my customers asked me to go out on my own, so I did.”

Benoit traded a short-term techncial program at Stratford from 1995 to 2005 and produced some eye popping returns including a compound annual return of more than 35%, but decided to end the program after a difficult year in 2005. “The market was brutal, I've done it for 10 years, made pretty good money so I took a couple of years off,” Benoit says.

When he decided to launch a program in 2008 it needed to be different. “I did technicals for 10 years. I wanted to take a different approach, that is why I came back. I could have done technicals again but that is a very crowded trade, so I looked at the fundamentals,” Benoit says.

However, his approach to fundamentals is not typical. He will look at what sectors or individual stocks are leading the major equity indexes and using that information make a directional play on the index. “In the last six weeks semi conductors has been the driving force in the Nasdaq so I have been focused on them,” Benoit says. “Yesterday, the semis were leading on the upside; I took that as a buy signal.”

Benoit trades the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq.

The approach has worked as Stratford is up 62.60% through August after dropping 14.12% in 2009 when financials led the equities. “If you see the market rising and the financials were stuck in the mud or going down, then I would sell the market. I would sell into that strength,” Benoit says. “I use whatever the sector is that is driving the market and I look for anomalies. Either it is leading or it is lagging and that is how I determine which direction I am taking.”

The program has performed well in up and down markets. It sometimes follows the trend and sometimes appears to be countertrend in nature. He did well in the volatile markets of May this year, only losing money on two days and even earning money on May 6 when the flash crash occurred.

Benoit says that what is leading can change often. “Prior to six weeks ago Apple was leading,” he says. The market would open lower and then Apple would move higher, which would trigger a buy signal in the index. “I would be buying in and then the market would move up,” he says.

He takes profits around the time the market matches the move of Apple or the stock of sector that is leading.

“When I have trouble it is when there is either nothing that is leading or lagging or if the futures is leading the market instead of the cash. I try and wait until I see something that gives me a signal. I wait for the market to tell me what to do,” Benoit says.

So far the market had been steering Benoit in the right direction.

For more on Stratford Capital Management including contact information, click here.

Vergho: Profits over pedigree

Kevin Vergho is a self taught trader who credits the lessons of trading guru Linda Bradford Raschke for influencing his trading philosophy.

Vergho has been trading full time since 1999, and in 2008 launched his Northern California based short-term diversified technical CTA Vergho Asset Management.

Vergho worked for Fisher Investments after graduating from Santa Clara University in 1992 but was not involved on the trading side and wanted to be. He started his own education company in the late 1990s to spend more time on his personal trading.

By 2000, Vergho was concentrating on futures and the burgeoning equity index sector, trading intraday. “I gravitated to short-term strategies because I found it to be the easiest way to develop income on a monthly basis,” Vergho says.

As his expertise grew and philosophy evolved, he added other financial markets and metals and expanded his time horizon. “It has been an evolution. Even guys [who] develop black box systems tweak them,” he says.

Vergho describes his Kinematics program as a volatility breakout system. “The downside of such a program is that you get the false breakouts. I have gotten better at screening out those false breakouts, exiting when necessary to avoid any serious damage and being able to stay with the winners a little longer. That has been the tweaking that was going on for the 10 years before I launched the program,” he says.

No one can accuse Vergho of rushing the product to market or not doing his due diligence, as the program has returned 55.5% since its November 2008 launch (compound annual return of 28.73%) with a worst drawdown of 1.95%, monthly standard deviation of 2.22 and a Sharpe ratio of 3.71.

“I took what I was doing on a proprietary level and deleveraged to the point that it made sense for the average investor. The main concern was that I wanted to keep the drawdowns to a reasonable level. I tried to find the sweet spot for the average investor,” Vergho says.

Judging by his short track record, he seems to have found the spot.

Vergho uses two technical based systems: one short- to medium-term system that will hold positions two to 20 days that he applies to the approximate 15 markets he trades; the other is an intraday model based on the same underlying philosophy that he applies just to equity index markets.

“I have a model that generates signals, the discretionary element comes from how much we put on and in terms of managing the trade as well as keeping track of correlations among markets.”

Vergho looks at multiple timeframes. “We use a 15-minute chart to enter, which would be confirmed by the 60-minute chart. We are looking for a higher time frame consolidation, we step down to a lower time frame to initiate the entry,” Vergho says.

Even though he is entering a trend confirmed by a longer-term trend, the strategy can appear countertrend at times. “We could actually catch a reversal at some level because a lot of time the consolidation is at the top or the bottom,” Vergho adds.

The intraday program is based on the same philosophy, though looking at much shorter time frames. “I started out as an intraday equity index guy. The longer-time, I added later. It is just doing the same thing on the volatility breakout level.”

He says expansion into a longer timeframe was a natural progression. “You see these larger moves and say, ‘Hey I was in on that at the beginning, [so] how can I expand that out and take advantage of it?' The only answer I could come up with is to step it out to a higher timeframe.”

Despite his impressive returns, Vergho is in no hurry to grow and understands institutional investors may be weary of his lack of pedigree. “They look at me and say, ‘You learned how to trade by yourself; that is so unusual.' I didn't come from a big bank background, which is fine. I am happy with the way we have grown so far. I am not in any hurry to make any changes to impress the institutional side.”

If Vergho keeps this up, the institutional side will come find him.

For more on Vergho Asset Management including contact information, click here.

Insignia: Trading options by feel

Joe Fallico began trading stocks while in college in the 1980s but moved to futures by the 1990s. His broker at the time, Farr Financial, was so impressed with his trading that they offered Fallico a position. Fallico, who lived in the Chicago area, did not want to move to California where Farr was located, so instead started an IB for Farr in 2001.

Fallico was perfecting his proprietary trading methods and by 2005 Farr approached him again about starting up a CTA. “I started testing it over a few years and when it was ready for the public I started it up in February 2009,” Fallico says.

The program, Medallion, is a discretionary option writing strategy. In July 2009 he launched Epoch 3, a similar but more conservative strategy.

Fallico started trading futures exclusively in 2000 and by 2005 began to mix options into his portfolio. “I kind of eased my way into options. I was doing a mixture of both and a year or two later I was only doing options. I just saw the better probabilities and better performance,” Fallico says.

As equities led to futures and futures to options on futures, option buying led to option writing. “I started [with] debit spreads and after a few months realized that was not the way to go,” Fallico says. “Then I [went] into strangles. That is when I really developed and from there I [did] credit spreads and short options positions.”

Fallico will trade naked options and credit spreads in a diversified group of futures markets covering all sectors. He will put on spreads to mitigate risk but there is no specific metric to determine when he gets in naked and when he spreads. “It is all in my head, I have a mental formula that I use depending on what the market is doing. I will look at direction nd where] I can collect a nice premium. It is all factored in but it is very discretionary.”

Fallico will sell options from one to three months out. He doesn't use hard stops but usually knows when he will exit a position, though he gives himself the discretion of rolling out to a further strike.

“I don't use stops per se. A lot of times I follow the futures and set mental stops. If the futures price gets to X then I would just liquidate, though I may hold it a little longer or sell a farther one out,” Fallico says, adding, “There is probably a formula I could apply but that is not how I do it.”

Fallico has always traded a diversified group of markets, which is not the norm for option writers who tend to concentrate on equity indexes. Being diversified allows him to take advantage of more opportunities.

But too much concentration bit him in 2009. Despite an impressive return of 32.12%, Medallion suffered two 20% plus drawdowns in May and July due to concentrated positions in energy markets.

“I had a lot going to those markets and got burned. We were in RBOB (unleaded gasoline) and crude oil,” Fallico says. He estimates that he had close to a 60% concentration in energy during the drawdowns and has since adjusted the program so that no sector will have more than 30% of the total allocation of capital at any one time.

The lessons seem to have held as Medallion is up 29.61% in 2010 through August without any double digit drawdowns despite some volatile markets. For Fallico, it is a matter of feel.

For more on Insignia Futures & Options including contact information, click here.

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Judge clears way for Brown execution in California | View Clip
09/24/2010
Lexington Herald-Leader - Online

By CAROL J. WILLIAMS - Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES -- A federal judge on Friday cleared the way for the first execution in California in nearly five years when he refused to halt murderer-rapist Albert Greenwood Brown's death by lethal injection, scheduled for Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel expressed concern about the limited time he had to evaluate the state's newly revised execution procedures and gave Brown the choice of being put to death by a single injection, as practiced in Washington and Ohio, instead of by the state's three-drug method.

Fogel expressed inner conflict over his ruling, saying his court was "painfully aware that however it decides a case of this nature, there will be many who disagree profoundly with its decision. The moral and political debate about capital punishment will continue, as it should."

Murderer-rapist denied execution stay in California

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Appeals court overturns injunction against executions in California

But the state has "a strong interest in proceeding with its judgment," the judge conceded. He said he was offering the single-injection option to alleviate his residual concerns about the potential for the three-injection method to subject condemned inmates to cruel and unusual punishment.

In as many as seven of the previous 11 lethal-injection deaths carried out at San Quentin State Prison, there were reports that the prisoner might not have been fully anesthetized by the first injection, the powerful barbiturate sodium thiopental, Fogel noted in his ruling.

"The fact that nine single-drug executions have been carried out in Ohio and Washington without any apparent difficulty is undisputed and significant," Fogel said, giving Brown that option.

Fogel had asked the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation earlier this week whether it could use the single-injection method. Attorneys for the state told Fogel the corrections staff needed only three days to retrain the execution team for the one-drug method, in which a much larger dose of the barbiturate would put the prisoner into a deep sleep as his organs shut down.

One of Brown's attorneys, John R. Grele, said the legal team was weighing its options and might appeal to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The motions panel for September consists of three judges appointed to the court by former President George W. Bush.

On Monday, Brown's lawyers are expected to argue before a Marin County court that the state did not follow mandatory procedures when it went about drafting the new lethal-injection policy to address deficiencies identified by Fogel when he effectively stayed executions with a ruling in 2006.

Santa Clara University law professor Ellen Kreitzberg, an expert on the death penalty, said Friday's ruling surprised her.

Five years ago, she said, Fogel spent a lot of time meticulously examining the setting, training and testing that lay behind California's lethal injection process before finding flaws in it. But the judge's ruling in Brown's case came without his having examined the new execution chamber that has been built in the meantime and without his examining the training for those who administer the drugs.

"There are so many unanswered questions and so many uncertainties that to allow the execution to go forward with those is really troubling," said Kreitzberg, who opposes the death penalty. "It's surprising after five years that everyone is rushing to have these executions move forward so quickly."

Brown had petitioned Fogel's court last week to join the case brought by fellow death row inmate Michael Morales, who had challenged the state's former lethal-injection procedures as violating the Constitution's prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment.

Attorneys for the state objected, claiming the procedures challenged by Morales are no longer in use. They were replaced by new protocols approved by a state agency in late July.

After halting Morales' execution in February 2006, Fogel held hearings that led to his ruling that the former execution methods risked exposing prisoners to unconstitutional levels of pain.

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California murderer's execution OKd | View Clip
09/24/2010
Los Angeles Times - Online

(); A federal judge on Friday cleared the way for the first execution in California in nearly five years when he refused to halt murderer-rapist Albert Greenwood Brown's death by lethal injection, scheduled for Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel expressed concern about the limited time he had to evaluate the state's newly revised execution procedures and gave Brown the choice of being put to death by a single injection, as practiced in Washington and Ohio, instead of by the state's three-drug method.

Fogel expressed inner conflict over his ruling, saying his court was "painfully aware that however it decides a case of this nature, there will be many who disagree profoundly with its decision. The moral and political debate about capital punishment will continue, as it should." But the state has "a strong interest in proceeding with its judgment," the judge conceded. He said he was offering the single-injection option to alleviate his residual concerns about the potential for the three-injection method to subject condemned inmates to cruel and unusual punishment.

In as many as seven of the previous 11 lethal-injection deaths carried out at San Quentin State Prison, there were reports that the prisoner might not have been fully anesthetized by the first injection, the powerful barbiturate sodium thiopental, Fogel noted in his ruling.

"The fact that nine single-drug executions have been carried out in Ohio and Washington without any apparent difficulty is undisputed and significant," Fogel said, giving Brown that option.

Fogel had asked the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation earlier this week whether it could use the single-injection method. Attorneys for the state told Fogel the corrections staff needed only three days to retrain the execution team for the one-drug method, in which a much larger dose of the barbiturate would put the prisoner into a deep sleep as his organs shut down.

One of Brown's attorneys, John R. Grele, said the legal team was weighing its options and might appeal to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. The motions panel for September consists of three judges appointed to the court by former . On Monday, Brown's lawyers are expected to argue before a Marin County court that the state did not follow mandatory procedures when it went about drafting the new lethal-injection policy to address deficiencies identified by Fogel when he effectively stayed executions with a ruling in 2006.

Santa Clara University law professor Ellen Kreitzberg, an expert on the death penalty, said Friday's ruling surprised her.

Five years ago, she said, Fogel spent a lot of time meticulously examining the setting, training and testing that lay behind California's lethal injection process before finding flaws in it. But the judge's ruling in Brown's case came without his having examined the new execution chamber that has been built in the meantime and without his examining the training for those who administer the drugs.

"There are so many unanswered questions and so many uncertainties that to allow the execution to go forward with those is really troubling," said Kreitzberg, who opposes the death penalty. "It's surprising after five years that everyone is rushing to have these executions move forward so quickly."

Brown had petitioned Fogel's court last week to join the case brought by fellow death row inmate Michael Morales, who had challenged the state's former lethal-injection procedures as violating the Constitution's prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment.

Attorneys for the state objected, claiming the procedures challenged by Morales are no longer in use. They were replaced by new protocols approved by a state agency in late July.

After halting Morales' execution in February 2006, Fogel held hearings that led to his ruling that the former execution methods risked exposing prisoners to unconstitutional levels of pain.

Among the deficiencies Fogel identified were insufficient training of the execution team and cramped conditions and poor lighting in the gas chamber that was then in use for lethal-injection executions. Two other prisoners were executed by lethal gas in the early 1990s, bringing to 13 the number put to death by the state since capital punishment was reinstated in 1976.

Corrections officials in 2007 built a new Lethal Injection Chamber ? four times larger than the gas chamber ? and unveiled the facility on Tuesday.

There are 708 prisoners on California's death row, but only a few have exhausted all appeals and are eligible to be issued death warrants.

Brown, 56, was convicted of the aggravated murder of Arlington High School student Susan Jordan in 1980 in Riverside. The 15-year-old was walking to school when Brown pulled her into an orange grove, raped her and strangled her with her shoelaces. He called the girl's parents and told them where to find her body.

Brown had been paroled four months earlier from a prison term imposed for the 1977 rape of a 14-year-old girl.

A Riverside County judge last month ordered Brown's execution for Wednesday.

John Hall, a spokesman for the Riverside County district attorney's office, said prosecutors were pleased with Fogel's ruling.

"This is a horrific case with horrific facts," Hall said. "This man showed no remorse. He never claimed innocence.... It's time for this family to finally see justice. It's been delayed too long already."

Some advocacy groups hailed Fogel's decision.

"Today's ruling marks the end of the injustice in this case, and we may be near the end in many others, where the sentences have been delayed for reasons that have nothing to do with the guilt of the murderers or the fairness of their trials," said Kent Scheidegger, legal director for the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation in Sacramento.

Times staff writer Jack Leonard contributed to this report. var afterLoginLocation = ''; var defaultLocation = $('articlePromoLink').href; var wasClicked = false; if (!!window.carnival) , function() ).writeNav(); carnival.user.afterLogin( function() else if(wasClicked) );

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Whitman joins Brown in opposing Proposition 23 | View Clip
09/24/2010
San Francisco Chronicle

Meg Whitman, who has criticized California's landmark climate change law as a "dangerous job killer," said Thursday she is opposing a statewide ballot measure that would suspend AB32, a move that some analysts say shows the GOP gubernatorial candidate is trying to straddle a key environmental issue.

Whitman rejected the California Republican Party's support for Proposition 23, joining Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown in standing against the November initiative that would put the law on hold until the state's unemployment rate, now at 12.4 percent, drops to 5.5 percent for a year.

"My plan is to suspend AB32 for at least one year while we develop the sensible improvements the law badly needs to protect the jobs of hard-working Californians while improving our environment," Whitman said in a statement announcing her position.

"While green jobs are an important and growing part of our state's economic future, we cannot forget the other 97 percent of jobs in key sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, transportation and energy," she said. "We compete for jobs with many other states and our environmental policy must reflect that reality."

Brown, who held a news conference Thursday in Newark at PetersenDean Roofing and Solar Systems, charged the former eBay CEO with "double talk" on alternative energy and climate change.

He called on her to "renege on her commitment to delay AB32," saying a "stop and start" approach to the development of alternative energy jobs in California "makes no sense" to the state's economy.

"We have to have a clear mandate, a clear signal, that California is open for (alternative energy) business," he said.

The state's climate change law requires that California reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Polls have shown that independent voters tend to support the law and are likely to be alienated from candidates who support Prop. 23.

California's 1 in 5 voters not registered with a political party should be critical in Whitman's race against Brown, which is dead even, according to a Field Poll this week.

"She's making a political calculation that she will pick up more voters who are independents than she will dampen enthusiasm from the Republican base," said Jon Fleischman, Southern California vice chair of the state GOP and publisher of the FlashReport.org site.

Among those voters, he said, are independent women, who are considered more likely to support Whitman "if she is seen as pro-environment."

Whitman's focus groups "tell them that because Jerry Brown is so liberal, she has a lot of wiggle room" before hard-line conservatives will withhold their votes or refuse to support her entirely, Fleischman said.

Tea Party activists and conservative leaders have urged Whitman to support Prop. 23, which is backed by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina.

The California Republican Party was silent on Whitman's opposition to Prop. 23.

Nancy Unger, who teaches environmental history at Santa Clara University, said Whitman's criticism of AB32 and her opposition to Prop. 23 reflects a "notion of trying to have it all ways."

Copyright © 2010 San Francisco Chronicle

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Meg Whitman joins Jerry Brown against Prop. 23 | View Clip
09/24/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

(09-23) 20:28 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- Meg Whitman, who has criticized California's landmark climate change law as a "dangerous job killer," said Thursday she is opposing a statewide ballot measure that would suspend AB32, a move that some analysts say shows the GOP gubernatorial candidate is trying to straddle a key environmental issue.

Whitman rejected the California Republican Party's support for Proposition 23, joining Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown in standing against the November initiative that would put the law on hold until the state's unemployment rate, now at 12.4 percent, drops to 5.5 percent for a year.

"My plan is to suspend AB32 for at least one year while we develop the sensible improvements the law badly needs to protect the jobs of hard-working Californians while improving our environment," Whitman said in a statement announcing her position.

"While green jobs are an important and growing part of our state's economic future, we cannot forget the other 97 percent of jobs in key sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, transportation and energy," she said. "We compete for jobs with many other states and our environmental policy must reflect that reality."

Brown, who held a news conference Thursday in Newark at PetersenDean Roofing and Solar Systems, charged the former eBay CEO with "double talk" on alternative energy and climate change.

He called on her to "renege on her commitment to delay AB32," saying a "stop and start" approach to the development of alternative energy jobs in California "makes no sense" to the state's economy.

"We have to have a clear mandate, a clear signal, that California is open for (alternative energy) business," he said.

The state's climate change law requires that California reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Polls have shown that independent voters tend to support the law and are likely to be alienated from candidates who support Prop. 23.

California's 1 in 5 voters not registered with a political party should be critical in Whitman's race against Brown, which is dead even, according to a Field Poll this week.

"She's making a political calculation that she will pick up more voters who are independents than she will dampen enthusiasm from the Republican base," said Jon Fleischman, Southern California vice chair of the state GOP and publisher of the FlashReport.org site.

Among those voters, he said, are independent women, who are considered more likely to support Whitman "if she is seen as pro-environment."

Whitman's focus groups "tell them that because Jerry Brown is so liberal, she has a lot of wiggle room" before hard-line conservatives will withhold their votes or refuse to support her entirely, Fleischman said.

Tea Party activists and conservative leaders have urged Whitman to support Prop. 23, which is backed by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina.

The California Republican Party was silent on Whitman's opposition to Prop. 23.

Nancy Unger, who teaches environmental history at Santa Clara University, said Whitman's criticism of AB32 and her opposition to Prop. 23 reflects a "notion of trying to have it all ways."

This article appeared on page A - 9 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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Whitman joins Brown in opposing Prop. 23 | View Clip
09/24/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

(09-23) 20:28 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- Meg Whitman, who has criticized California's landmark climate change law as a "dangerous job killer," said Thursday she is opposing a statewide ballot measure that would suspend AB32, a move that some analysts say shows the GOP gubernatorial candidate is trying to straddle a key environmental issue.

Whitman rejected the California Republican Party's support for Proposition 23, joining Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown in standing against the November initiative that would put the law on hold until the state's unemployment rate, now at 12.4 percent, drops to 5.5 percent for a year.

"My plan is to suspend AB32 for at least one year while we develop the sensible improvements the law badly needs to protect the jobs of hard-working Californians while improving our environment," Whitman said in a statement announcing her position.

Competing for jobs

"While green jobs are an important and growing part of our state's economic future, we cannot forget the other 97 percent of jobs in key sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, transportation and energy," she said. "We compete for jobs with many other states and our environmental policy must reflect that reality."

Brown, who held a news conference Thursday in Newark at PetersenDean Roofing and Solar Systems, charged the former eBay CEO with "double talk" on alternative energy and climate change.

He called on her to "renege on her commitment to delay AB32," saying a "stop and start" approach to the development of alternative energy jobs in California "makes no sense" to the state's economy.

"We have to have a clear mandate, a clear signal, that California is open for (alternative energy) business," he said.

The state's climate change law requires that California reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Polls have shown that independent voters tend to support the law and are likely to be alienated from candidates who support Prop. 23.

California's 1 in 5 voters not registered with a political party should be critical in Whitman's race against Brown, which is dead even according to a Field Poll this week.

"She's making a political calculation that she will pick up more voters who are independents than she will dampen enthusiasm from the Republican base," said Jon Fleischman, Southern California vice chair of the state GOP and publisher of the FlashReport.org site.

Independent women

Among those voters, he said, are independent women, who are considered more likely to support Whitman "if she is seen a pro-environment."

Whitman's focus groups "tell them that because Jerry Brown is so liberal, she has a lot of wiggle room" before hard-line conservatives will withhold their votes or refuse to support her entirely, Fleischman said.

Tea Party activists and conservative leaders have urged Whitman to support Prop. 23, which is backed by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina.

The California Republican Party was silent on Whitman's opposition to Prop. 23.

Nancy Unger, who teaches environmental history at Santa Clara University, said Whitman's criticism of AB32 and her opposition to Prop. 23 reflects a "notion of trying to have it all ways."

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Google sues rogue prescription drug online advertisers | View Clip
09/23/2010
CIO - Online

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court. Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game, as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures. It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the US District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government [agencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

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Ignatian Family Teach-In asks Loyola community to reflect on social justice issues | View Clip
09/23/2010
Greyhound, The

Through the joint efforts of Campus Ministry and the Center for Community Service and Justice, members of the Loyola community will travel to the three-day Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice Conference in Washington D.C. in mid-November. This unique opportunity gives participants from across the nation to share, interact and reflect with other members of Jesuit schools across the Unites States about a variety of different social justice issues like immigration reform, environmental justice, peacemaking and fair trade.

The Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice was organized 12 years ago and originated as an opportunity for members of the Ignatian family to gather prior to the vigil of the School of the Americas at Fort Benning, Georgia, as a commemoration to the assassination of six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper and her teenage daughter in San Salvador, El Salvador.

"This is an opportunity unlike no other, to be nurtured and challenged by our larger Ignatian family, as we come together out of a joint concern to bring about justice to our world," says Margarita Dubocq, assistant director for Poverty Concerns and Faith Connections at CCSJ. "The Teach-In provides the Loyola community with the opportunity to meet like-minded individuals at other Jesuit schools, so that we can share ideas with and learn from each other."

This year's theme will focus on "Prophetic Lives" and will be addressed through a series of keynote presentations and breakout sessions. Keynote speakers will include Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ, the author of Dead Man Walking, Sister Diana Ortiz, an Ursuline nun from New Mexico, Kim Bobo, the Executive Director and founder of Interfaith Worker Justice, and Mark Ravizza, S.J., associate professor at Santa Clara University in the Department of Philosophy.

Through a series of 30 breakout sessions, participants will discuss topics like immigration reform, environmental justice, the death penalty, fair-trade efforts and campaigns and post-grad volunteer opportunities.

The last day of the conference, Monday, November 15, will be the first time that the IFTJ will host an "Advocacy Day" portion of the conference. Participants will have the opportunity to engage in advocacy at Capitol Hill specifically about Immigration Reform, Climate Change &' Environmental Justice and the Closing the School of the Americas, also known as WHINSEC.

"The combination between stimulating and challenging presentations, creative ideas that other campuses do and share during the breakout sessions, the opportunity to advocate for social justice issues that one is passionate about, and the capstone Mass that joins the Ignatian family create a feeling of togetherness and empowerment that is hard to describe in words," says Dubocq.

Loyola has been participating in the Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice since 2004 and the numbers of students, administration, faculty, staff and alumni have varied over the years. This year, Campus Ministry and CCSJ hope to send a total of 30 members of the Loyola community to the IFTJ conference-style weekend, which will be held at the Georgetown Hotel and Conference in Washington D.C. from November 13-15.

Registration for the IFTJ is due no later than Monday, Sept. 27. There is a $50 contribution per participant. Financial support opportunities are available for students that may have concerns about affording the fee.

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Grassroots movement set out to defeat Prop 23 | View Clip
09/23/2010
KGO-TV

PALO ALTO, CA (KGO) -- On Thursday Republican candidate for governor Meg Whitman ended weeks of speculation about where she stands on Proposition 23 saying she is against the measure.

The ballot measure would suspend the implementation of the state's landmark greenhouse gas reduction law until the state's unemployment rate drops to 5.5 percent for four consecutive quarters.

Whitman says the measure is too simple a solution or too complex of a problem. Democratic candidate Jerry Brown praised Whitman's decision to oppose the measure.

ow, there's a grassroots effort to get out the vote to defeat Prop 23.

Thursday night, Prop 23 was on many minds. The "No On Prop 23" campaign held 80 get out the vote parties all over the state, including one in Palo Alto.

"This is about stopping big oil," said Susan Frank from the "No On Prop 23" campaign.

Major oil companies are backing Prop 23, which aims to suspend the state's greenhouse gas emissions law -- AB32.

AB32 was supposed to take effect in 2012. Its goal was to bring down California's greenhouse gas emissions to 1990s levels, by 2020.

"AB32 is a job killer, it destroys jobs and needs to be suspended. That's exactly where our campaign is coming from," said Anita Mangels from the "Yes On 23" campaign.

The "Yes On 23" campaign insists now is not the time to put limitations on companies by adding regulations. The executive director of California's National Federation Of Independent Businesses says the unemployment rate will rise above the current 12 percent with AB32 because small business owners simply can't afford the guidelines right now.

"That's new cost in electricity, new costs in natural gas, new costs in actual gasoline. All of those effect main street mom and pops that are trying to keep our state going," said John Kabateck, a small business representative.

"AB32 is about regulating emissions from large power sources and large sources of pollution, like oil companies. It's not about affecting small businesses," said Frank.

Whitman said she plans to vote no on Prop 23, but would suspend AB32 for one year if voted governor.

"She doesn't want to look like she doesn't support growth of jobs in California. So I think she's really trying to walk a fine line here," said Santa Clara Associate Professor Nancy C. Unger, Ph.D.

Regardless, it's a move that is confusing to some voters because they see Whitman's actions of voting no on Prop 23 as pointless if she's going to suspend AB32 if voted governor.

Voters will have their say November 2.

(Copyright ©2010 KGO-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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PROBE ON SUFFOLK ETHICS PANEL The details they need to disclose
09/23/2010
Newsday

The Suffolk County Legislature has voted to hire a special counsel to investigate certain actions of the Suffolk County Ethics Commission. A focus of the inquiry, officials have said, is to examine the requirements for filing the county financial disclosure form and what information may be included or excluded on it.

Yesterday, the special counsel, Joseph Conway, requested a number of documents from the commission and asked to interview current and former commission members. Conway gave the commission one week to comply with his request.

The Suffolk County financial disclosure form asks for a detailed listing of financial information pertaining to an official and the official's spouse. It is a sworn statement.

Government ethics experts contacted by Newsday and asked to review the county form to provide their views of its purpose and what it asks said its intention is to give the general public complete information about their public officials' financial connections.

"The public needs to know that elected officials are acting in the public interest and not their private interest, and that's why the disclosure form exists," said Dick Dadey, executive director of the Citizens Union of the City of New York, a nonpartisan watchdog group.

The form also seeks to determine whether conflicts of interest exist, experts said.

"It's through that lens that you need to examine the questions that are asked and the interpretations that are given," said Fordham University law professor Jim Cohen. "If you look at it through that lens of conflict of interest, then disclosure is, generally speaking, required."

Added Robert Lawry, emeritus professor of law at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland "You just want to disclose. If you disclose, then people can determine whether it's something that they don't like, or if they think [an official's] judgment has been compromised."

In analyzing the county form, the legal experts contacted by Newsday pointed to what they called its comprehensiveness.

"It's as broad as any disclosure statement possibly could be," said Bennett Gershman, a Pace University Law School professor who specializes in government ethics. "There are no limitations."

The experts said that inclusiveness is appropriate for public officials - and their families, whose information is included on the form as well.

"Because you're a public servant, the public has a right to know. You waived your right [to keep information private] by agreeing to become a public official," said Marianne Jennings, a professor of legal and ethical studies in business at Arizona State University. "If you don't want to disclose that, you may want to find a different line of work."

A LOOK AT THE FORM

Here is a look at the form, which is laid out in sections that deal with different issues, and what the form requires of those who fill it out, according to these experts. The form includes five sections, labeled A through E. The first asks for "General Information." Sections B and C request listings of business affiliations that have connections with the county. Section D deals with assets and liabilities and Section E asks for sources of income.

The form also includes six additional "schedules" that provide space for a more detailed listing of information. These include stocks and bonds, real estate interests, interests in contracts with government instrumentalities, notes and accounts receivable, liabilities and "Any additional information for which space is inadequate."

The County Ethics Code also allows, under certain circumstances, for some information provided by the filer to the County Ethics Commission to be shielded from the public. The experts consulted speak to this issue in the last section of this story.

GENERAL INFORMATION

The form asks for the public official's name, address, title and duties, along with the official's spouse's name and his or her occupation. It then asks the filer to list any position "of any nature" - paid or not - held by the official or any member of his or her family that does business with the county, has any matter pending before the county or is licensed or regulated by any county agency or department.

It also asks for the listing of any business, occupation, trade or profession of the official or official's spouse that does business with the county, has any matter pending before the county or is licensed or regulated by any county agency or department.

"I would interpret it to mean every single business interest that you have or are engaged in personally or professionally," said Martha Perego, the director of ethics for the International City County Management Association in Washington, D.C. "You need to know completely what those family members and spouse are involved in ... I think the intent of the law is complete and full disclosure."

NET WORTH ("Statement of assets and liabilities")

Among the assets the form asks to be listed is cash in bank accounts. This is the one section of the form that allows the filer to denote a category of value, rather than a specific amount. For example, the filer may check off a range of $50,001 to $100,000.

The form asks for specific dollar amounts - not a range of value - of all other assets, such as stocks and bonds, real estate interests, life insurance, accounts receivable, deferred compensation and other items.

"It says any direct or indirect owned by you, and that means if you obtain income from your company and its clients, you have to list that," said Robert Gottlieb, a Manhattan attorney who co-chaired a committee that reformed Suffolk's ethic code in 1988.

The form also asks the filer to list all liabilities, among them notes payable to banks, mortgages, taxes and any other indebtedness.

"It is totally inclusive of every financial asset and liability that you have," said Pace University's Gershman.

SOURCES OF INCOME

The form asks for all sources and amount of income for the official and spouse for the preceding year. That includes the following

All compensated continuing employment of whatever nature, including county employment.

All directorships and other fiduciary positions for which compensation has or will be claimed.

All contractual arrangements producing or expected to produce income.

All honorariums, lecture fees and other miscellaneous sources of income. The official is asked to itemize each item.

"The intent of that provision was to disclose where you are getting your money to see whether or not a conflict of interest has been created," Gottlieb said, adding that a contract does not need to be written to be included on the disclosure form.

"If you have an ongoing relationship, it essentially amounts to a contract and requires disclosure," said Dadey of the Citizens Union.

The experts said the county's disclosure form was expansive in terms of asking for income sources, which provides for more transparency, they said.

"You're doing business and you're being paid for it, regardless of whether it's a handshake or a notarized document," said Judy Nadler, a senior fellow on government ethics for Santa Clara University's Markkula Center for Applied Ethics in California. "In an abundance of caution and to ensure the public's trust, absolute transparency is the best."

WHAT MAY BE WITHHELD

The Suffolk County Ethics Code mandates that "categories of value" - in other words, the information related to cash in bank accounts - must remain confidential if the form is made available to the public.

The code also allows other information to be redacted if the Ethics Commission finds that information is "highly personal."

To make that determination, the commission must receive a written request from the employee that describes the highly personal nature of the information the employee is seeking to withhold from the public.

The commission then considers the request to decide whether the public interest outweighs any personal embarrassment. "If the board determines that the potential personal embarrassment, not financial or economic, outweighs the public interest, then the board shall withhold the statement from public disclosure," the code states.

The scope for redaction, therefore, is relatively narrow, experts said.

The experts noted that medical issues or something related to a child's needs might qualify as being of a "personal nature."

It's the county official's responsibility to indicate why something should remain confidential, Gottlieb said.

"The burden is on [the public official] to show that public disclosure would be highly personal in nature and that redaction outweighs the public interest," he added. "It can't be personal because you don't want the public to know that amount or the source of the income."

Kelly Williams, in-house general counsel for New York University's Brennan Center for Justice, a public policy institute, echoed that. "I don't think the average person would think the actual dollar amount is personally embarrassing."

She added that disclosure of financial interests by public officials has become an important issue nationwide.

"The trend is toward more extensive and more meaningful financial disclosure across every level of government across the country," she said. "Public officials had just better get used to it."

Copyright © 2010 Newsday, Inc.

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PASTA MARKET SPECIALIZES IN BUDGET-FRIENDLY FAMILY FARE
09/23/2010
San Jose Mercury News

A restaurateur who manages to expand during a recession has to be doing something right, so when a branch of the Pasta Market opened in San Jose's MarketCenter this summer, I had to check it out.

The Pasta Market is a chain, but not a McDonald's- or Starbucks-type chain. It's locally owned, with four restaurants, including the new San Jose one. The others are clustered at the northern end of Silicon Valley, in Menlo Park, Los Altos and Sunnyvale.

At the Pasta Market, you walk up to the counter to order, get a number and then someone brings your food to your table.

Probably the best thing I had came quickly, within five minutes of when I sat down.

It was a simple house salad ($2.50) that included shredded carrots, sliced cucumber and a cherry tomato in addition to lettuce. What made it special was the creamy Italian dressing, a great blend of traditional Italian flavors such as garlic, basil and oregano with a nice vinegary kick but rounded off with a cream base.

But the dressing didn't feel rich or too heavy the way some creamy dressings can. It was so good I ended up wiping my plate clean with garlic bread that was part of my pasta order but the server had brought with the salad.

The restaurant offers several other dressing choices, but the creamy Italian is so good that I've never wanted to try any of the others.

Given the restaurant's name, I had to order the spaghetti and meatballs ($5.95 plus $1.50 for a pair of meatballs). A great deal of customization is possible at the Pasta Market when it comes to pasta orders. You can choose among seven types of spaghetti, three types of ravioli and three types of tortellini.

Then there are a staggering 10 sauce options. I've tried the marinara, meat and Bolognese. All three of them tasted fresh but very mild. The Bolognese had the most flavor, but don't expect anything too robust in the sauce department. That being said, they do have Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes at every table so you can season to taste.

Where the Pasta Market really shines is in the takeout department. The pasta reheats excellently, neither drying out nor becoming mushy, even after a night or more in the fridge, and the sauces still taste bright and fresh.

The Pasta Market also has a lunch deal that can't be beat.

Starting at $6, you get your choice of pasta, including ravioli or tortellini, served with your choice of sauce. You also get a salad plus breadsticks that come with a tasty cheese spread. All of it comes in plastic Tupperware-style containers that you can reuse.

I wouldn't be surprised to find apartments of San Jose State and Santa Clara University students where the kitchen cabinets are stocked with nothing but recycled Pasta Market containers.

My second favorite item comes from the dessert menu.

The tiramisu ($3.95) comes on a plate crisscrossed with ribbons of chocolate and raspberry sauce. It has moist ladyfingers perfectly flavored with espresso and I'm pretty sure just a hint of Marsala wine. Between the ladyfinger layers is a good half-inch of fluffy and sweet mascarpone cheese. It's topped off with a solid layer of cocoa powder.

Besides pastas, the Pasta Market offers a selection of pizzas and other Italian entrees (the chicken Marsala is particularly good), as well as sandwiches. Plus, they have an amazingly affordable children's menu (we're talking less than four bucks a kid).

Affordability may be the secret to the Pasta Market's success. Despite being a mini-chain, it is in many ways an old-fashioned family restaurant. It offers solid portions, comfortable tasty menu items and a very good price. No wonder it is expanding.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Thousands gather in St. Petersburg to celebrate Catholic saint's relics | View Clip
09/23/2010
St. Petersburg Times - Online

ST. PETERSBURG — Almost 3,000 students from Tampa Bay area Catholic schools gathered Thursday morning to celebrate the historic visit of relics of one of the church's saints.

"The buses are rolling in,'' Father Mike Conway, president and director of St. Petersburg Catholic High, shouted above the din.

The relics — bones and tissue of the right hand of St. John Bosco -— are in a sealed box inside the chest cavity of a life-size fiberglass likeness of the saint in a glass casket. On a worldwide tour, the relics have never left Italy before. St. Petersburg is one of three Florida stops.

The students came together for a St. Don Bosco Relic Youth Rally and then marched one mile in the midday heat from the school to the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle, where the relics lie in front of the altar. Parts of Ninth Avenue N and Tyrone Boulevard were closed for the procession.

About two dozen students led the marchers, holding a banner that read "Don Bosco Relic, A Call to Holiness."

Middle-schoolers from St. Stephen's in Valrico sang. The marchers also prayed aloud — the Lord's Prayer and the Hail Mary.

For Stephanie Spencer, 17, the visit of the relics "is a good opportunity to feel close to Don Bosco, to be close to my Catholic values,'' she said as she munched a bag of Dorito's.

Dara Wilson, 17, who is not Catholic and worships at Pinellas Community Church, approves of the visit. "Whether you believe it or not, it's still a positive cause for everyone getting together and it's for God overall.''

Adult volunteers Mary Kimball and Suzann Corral of Tampa took time to talk about their beliefs. They belong to the home school group JMJ (Jesus, Mary and Joseph) Tampa Bay. Kimball, who has seven children, said the visit of the relics "is an aspect of our faith we don't always get to experience. People have been healed through these experiences.''

At 11:45 the students lined up to prepare for the procession.

TSt. John Bosco and the religious order he founded, the Salesians of Don Bosco, have played an important role in the area. Members of the order arrived in Tampa in the 1920s and served immigrants in Ybor City. Their work continues at St. Petersburg Catholic and in Tampa at Villa Madonna School, Mary Help of Christians Center and St. Joseph's School.

The middle and high schoolers, who arrived by car and bus to St. Petersburg Catholic High, started the day with separate prayer and worship services. The gymnasium was a sea of mostly green T-shirts, with middle schoolers sitting on the risers and squatting on the floor. The high schoolers, wearing blue T-shirts, worshipped in the St. John Bosco Center for the Arts auditorium.

At St. Jude's, which was opened for public veneration of the relic, people were coming and going. Red and white signs pointed from the church to "relic parking'' a mile away at the school.

The relics are from a reliquary containing his remains that lie in a cathedral in Turin, Italy. The relics for the world tour have been separated into two sealed silver-plated boxes. The box containing the hand of Don Bosco, as the saint is affectionately known, was placed in the chest cavity of the likeness now in St. Petersburg. The other, containing the right forearm, is being displayed in other ways in areas of the world where it is considered culturally insensitive for the relics to be presented in a casket.

The concept of relics is not easy for some to grasp, for Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

It is actually quite simple, said Gary Macy, professor of theology in the religious studies department at Santa Clara University in California.

"The idea behind relics is a pretty common sense one,'' he said. "If you put together the general human tendency to save reminders of the departed along with the belief that in Christ we do not die, then any reminder of a person of faith — their burial site, their body, their belongings — can be symbols of their presence that are very powerful.''

He added: "One example of a powerful symbol for Americans is the flag. So you don't desecrate a flag. It's not just a piece of cloth. It's a very powerful symbol.''

Whether they realize it or not, Americans are familiar with the idea, Macy said.

"When you find celebrity items up for auction, they go for a lot of money. Thousands and thousands of people go to Graceland. We put up memorials to people who die in battle,'' he said.

Catholic officials say there is nothing magical about relics. Their purpose is to draw people closer to God and to offer the faithful a chance to recollect the lives of saints and to be inspired by them.

Wednesday evening, hundreds of people turned out to welcome Don Bosco's relics, which arrived in a refrigerated truck from its recent stop in New Orleans. The crowd captured the occasion with cameras and many reverently touched the glass casket with rosaries or bare hands. Among those present was the Jesus Guy, barefoot, wearing his usual white robe and carrying a beige blanket. Taking it all in.

So was Yvonne Khan, 49, with her mother and daughter. She has had a special devotion to Don Bosco since she was a child growing up in Bangladesh, she said. She even has a piece of cloth that is a relic associated with the saint, the teacher's assistant said.

Even though she grew up attending Catholic schools, relics are new to Ngozi Acholonu.

"I don't remember it being taught,'' she said.

Still, she appreciates the concept.

"It's a testament to the strength and beliefs of the system that God can still work through that person and that it's used to draw us closer to him,'' she said at the end of the service that welcomed the relics at St. Jude's.

"You can feel the energy. You can feel the excitement,'' she said as people thronged to the front of the church to venerate the saint.

For Maria Perez, the event was overwhelming. She put her hands to her mouth as the glass casket arrived. She and her husband, Steve, both attended Salesian schools in Cuba.

"Since then we have a special love for him in our hearts,'' she said, adding that they even sent their daughter to Villa Madonna, a Salesian school, in Tampa.

"In April we went to see him in Turin and now he's here,'' she said.

It was a multicultural group that chatted excitedly as the truck with the relics arrived. There was a hush as the doors opened. The Knights of Columbus, resplendent in colorful regalia, surrounded the casket as Bishop Robert N. Lynch prayed.

"It is very important for us to witness something like this,'' said Carmen Forteau, who grew up in Trinidad.

"It makes you feel holier,'' said her friend, who is also from Trinidad, but declined to give her name.

Fifteen-year-old Dat Pham, a student at Dixie Hollins High in St. Petersburg, came with his parents, his father, Doan Pham, and mother, Trinh Luong.

Why was he there? "Because John Bosco is my saint and my communion name,'' he said.

A few minutes later he broke through the Knights of Columbus circle to touch the casket and make the sign of the cross.

To Terrie Cafazzo,72, of Clearwater, who learned about Don Bosco while attending Catholic school, the concept of relics isn't strange. She has what are called third class relics, items believed to have touched something belonging to a saint.

She looked around at the crowd gathered outside the cathedral. "There are probably people here for a miracle, I bet,'' Cafazzo said.

Waveney Ann Moore can be reached at wmoore@sptimes.com or (727) 892-2283.

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Santa Clara ranked among nation's best | View Clip
09/23/2010
USA Today - Online

In its annual ranking, "America's Best Colleges 2011," U.S. News & World Report ranked Santa Clara University second overall among 115 master's universities in the West. SCU's average undergraduate graduation rate, 85 percent, was the third highest in

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HOW ABOUT THE JOY OF GARBAGE? THE SYLLABUS FOR THIS COURSE AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY GOES FAR BEYOND WHY RECYCLING IS GOOD, COVERING THE SCIENCE AND CONSEQUENCES OF WHAT HUMANS CON SYSTEM AND DISCARD.
09/22/2010
10 O'Clock News - WJXT-TV, The

HEY, DUDE, YOU GOT TO PLEASE, DON'T EVEN TALK TO ME UNTIL I HAD MY COFFEE. OH, HEY, TIM. I SORRY. I HAVEN'T HAD MY COFFEE YET. WELCOME TO McDonald's. CAN I INTEREST YOU IN A NOT BEFORE I HAD MY COFFEE, Premium Roast Coffee FOR JUST A DOLLAR? TALK TO ME. [ Male Announcer ] McDonald's DOLLAR MENU AT BREAKFAST. WE'RE LEARNING NEW INFORMATION ABOUT A BUS DRIVER IN PORTLAND ACCUSED OF READING HIS KINDLE BEHIND THE WHEEL. APPARENTLY THE MAN IS NO STRANGER TO TROUBLE. THE CITY'S METRO DEPARTMENT SAYS THE MAN WAS FIRED FROM THE SAME JOB FOUR YEARS AGO. HE OPENED UP THE BOOK ON IT, PUT IT ON THE DASH AND BEGAN TO READ AS WE'RE DRIVING DOWN THE ROAD. WHEN A PORTLAND BUS PASSENGER SHOT THIS VIDEO LAST WEEK IT MADE NATIONAL NEWS. IT APPEARS TO SHOW THE DRIVER READING HIS KINDLE AS HE DROVE THROUGH CURVEY ROADS. HE IS NOW ON LEAVE AS TRI-MET INVESTIGATORS HIS ACTIONS. AS THEY DIG INTO HIS PAST EMPLOYMENT, THEY DISCOVERED A BOMB SHELL. TRI-MET ACTUALLY FIRED THE VERY SAME DRIVER FOUR YEARS AGO. ACCORDING TO TRY METH, HE TRI-MET. THE OPERATOR PHYSICALLY PUSHED THE PERSON OFF THE BUS. THE AGENCY FIRED HIM. BUT HE AND HIS UNION APPEALED TO AN ARBITRATOR WHO RULED THE DRIVER DESERVE ADD 30-DAY SUSPENSION IN ORDER TO BE FIRED AND ORDERED TRI-MET TO REHIRE HIM. UNDER THE LAW IT WAS THE LEGAL THING TO DO BUT WAS IT THE RIGHT THING? SOME PASSENGERS HAVE NO DOUBT. WELL, I DON'T THINK THAT'S SOMETHING BUS DRIVERS SHOULD BE DOING. I THINK IT MAKES IT WHERE YOU ARE NOT SAFE ON THE BUS AS A PASSENGER AND I JUST THINK IT'S WRONG. I DON'T THINK YOU SHOULD GET A LOT OF SECOND CHANCES ON SOMETHING LIKE THAT. IT SEEMS REAL OBVIOUS. I DON'T BLAME HE SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN VIOLENT WITH A PASSENGER UNLESS HE HAD USE FOR IT. THE DRIVER'S LAWYER SAYS HE WASN'T REALLY READING THE KINDLE. RIDERS DON'T BUY THAT EITHER. PUTTING ALL OF US AT RISK SO NO, I DON'T THINK IT SHOULD BE TOLERATED. I MEAN IT'S NOT APPROPRIATE TO ME. IF HE DID ALL THAT STUFF, HE BETTER LOOK FOR A NEW JOB. I WOULDN'T WANT TO RIDE WITH HIM. IS MAN IS NOW ON PAID LEAVE. A SPOKESMAN SAYS THAT PRIOR TO THE READER INCIDENT, HE WAS GIVEN CLEAR INSTRUCTIONS NOT TO USE ANY ELECTRONIC DEVICE WHILE DRIVING THE BUS. FREEDOM FROM RELIGION PUT UP THIS BILLBOARD READING 8thISM IS OKAY IN OKLAHOMA. NOW A RIVAL BILLBOARD COMPANY HAS RESPONDED WITH THESE ADS STATING GOD IS MORE THAN OK IN OKLAHOMA. BOTH SAY THEY HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH THE OPPOSING BOARD, THEY ARE JUST TRYING TO SPREAD THEIR MESSAGE. WE WANT TO LET PEOPLE KNOW THEY ARE NOT ALONE. THERE ARE OTHER PEOPLE SAYING IN THIS STATE. SOME DECISIONS YOU MAKE BECAUSE OF WHAT YOU BELIEVE AND THIS WAS ONE OF THOSE DECISIONS THAT WE THOUGHT WAS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF OUR BUSINESS AND COMMUNITY AND FOR US AS INDIVIDUALS. FREEDOM FROM RELIGION PLANS TO KEEP THEIR BILLBOARD UP FOR ANOTHER TWO WEEKS. THEY'VE PUT UP SIMILAR BILLBOARDS IN OTHER MAJOR CITIES. A RECORD SETTING HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL COACH FROM DAYTONA BEACH IS RESIGNING FROM HIS JOB. INVESTIGATORS SAY HE GOT CAUGHT UP HAD A SEX STING THAT'S ALL CAUGHT ON CAMERA. WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR? IN THIS VIDEO JUST RELEASED, INVESTIGATORS SAY YOU CAN SEE HIM PULL OVER TO TALK TO A WOMAN HE BELIEVES IS A PROSTITUTE. THE WOMAN IS REALLY AN UNDERCOVER COP. THE OFFICER EVENTUALLY ASKS HIM IF HE WANTS SEX AND IF HE HAS MONEY. THE MAN IS HEARD CONFIRMING HE HAS $50 AND AGREES TO GO TO A HOTEL ROOM. HE IS DUE IN COURT AT THE END OF THE MONTH. HE WAS HEAD FOOTBALL COACH AT A WELL-KNOWN HIGH SCHOOL. NEW AT 10 00, REMEMBER WHEN SWING DANCING AND SOAP OPERAS 101 SEEMED LIKE BIZARRE BASE TO SPEND YOUR MONEY IN COLLEGE. STARTING WITH GAGA FOR GAGA. UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA STUDENTS ENROLLED IN THE CLASS ANALYZE HOW THE MUSICIAN LADY GAGA PUSHES SOCIAL BOUNDARIES WITH HER WORK. AND THERE IS AS STUDENTS CALL IT WINE DRINKING CLASS. STUDENTS SIP WINE AT THE END OF TWO AND A HALF HOUR LECTURES TO GET A FEEL FOR WINE GROWING REGIONS AROUND THE WORLD. HOW ABOUT THE JOY OF GARBAGE? THE SYLLABUS FOR THIS COURSE AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY GOES FAR BEYOND WHY RECYCLING IS GOOD, COVERING THE SCIENCE AND CONSEQUENCES OF WHAT HUMANS CON SYSTEM AND DISCARD.

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Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
ARN

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court. Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures. It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government [agencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

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Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
ARN - Online

Google has been battling them for years in what the company calls an 'escalating cat-and-mouse game'

Juan Carlos Perez (IDG News Service)

Tags | search engines | legal | internet | Google | cybercrime | Civil lawsuits | advertising

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court.

Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures.

It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government gencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

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Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
CIO Australia

Google has been battling them for years in what the company calls an 'escalating cat-and-mouse game'

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court.

Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures.

It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government gencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

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Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
Computerworld Australia

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court. Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures. It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government [agencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

Return to Top



Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
Computerworld Australia

Google has been battling them for years in what the company calls an 'escalating cat-and-mouse game'

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court.

Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures.

It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government gencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

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Lecture: 'Role of Women in the Catholic Church' | View Clip
09/22/2010
Fairfield Patch

Location: Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts
1073 N Benson Rd, Fairfield, CT When:
October 6, 2010
Time: 7:30pm
Fairfield University's 2010 Anne Drummey O'Callaghan Lecture on the role of women in the Catholic Church will be held at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 6, in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. 


"Reservoirs of Hope and Resilience: Catholic Women's Witness" will be presented by award-winning author Kristin E. Heyer, Ph.D., associate professor of religious studies at Santa Clara University, focusing on two distinct groups of women: Those who are engaged in political advocacy for national healthcare, and women who struggle to cope with their migrant status.  

For more information about this event and the Center for Catholic Studies, visit www.fairfield.edu/cs < http://www.fairfield.edu/cs >  or call 203-254-4000, ext. 2364.

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Colleges are Going Gaga Over Crazy Courses - ParentDish | View Clip
09/22/2010
ParentDish

Your college kid's schedule: linguistics, Latin and Lady Gaga. Credit: Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

Remember when swing dancing and Soap Operas 101 seemed like wild and crazy college classes? Well, today's eclectic mix of higher education course offerings ensure that your college student won't spend her lecture time glued to her iPod or nodding off in the back of the classroom.

Since classes are the reason your kids have to roll out of bed before noon after staying up half the night "studying," you may be surprised to learn that aside from the regular history lessons and math-you'll-never-use-again courses, Junior has some cool picks filling up his syllabi this semester -- classes that may make you want to double check how your tuition dollars are being spent.

Experts say these college classes -- inspired by everything from Homer Simpson to heavy metal -- are the courses of the future.

"The thing to remember is, even though these courses have crazy names, they're no less academically rigorous than anything else in the curriculum," Jordan Goldman, founder the online college resource Unigo, tells ParentDish. "These courses are taught by the same professors as more boring-sounding classes like Psych 101, and they use the same basic skills and they have the same workloads."

Goldman says the unusual courses simply give students an opportunity to apply their academic skills in more fun, "now" contexts.

"For example, a course on 'The Simpsons' might push students to use the same close reading and analytical skills they'd use when writing a paper on 'Jane Eyre' ... but this time, they're applying those modes of analysis to Bart and Lisa and Milhouse," he says.

Here's a look at some of the nontraditional classes now being offered.

Not a Piece of Cake (or Meat). Leading the roster of crazy-cool courses is Lady Gaga. University of Virginia students enrolled in GaGa for Gaga: Sex, Gender and Identity, analyze how the musician pushes social boundaries with her work in an introductory course to argumentative essay writing.

"We're exploring how identity is challenged by gender and sexuality and how Lady Gaga confronts this challenge," writing instructor and grad student Christa Romanosky tells The Cavalier Daily. A role model for your daughter? Remember, her carnivore couture is to inspire she's not a piece of meat. And, as Lady Gaga recently tells People: "My philosophy is: 'Don't place limits on yourself.'"

We'll Drink to That. For a $150 lab fee, more than 300 students each year (92 students in three sections) at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, sip Chianti, Barolo and Valpolicella at the end of two-and-a-half-hour lectures to get a visceral feel of the various wine growing regions around the world, instructor John Keegan tells ParentDish.

"We're trying to show aromas and the balance and flaws in wines from each region," Keegan says. "We talk about what is tasted, the grape varieties and how wines are made, etc."

There's so much to learn that students can't possibly sip it all up in one semester, so summer excursions to Tuscany and other European vineyards are a must.

Take a Hike. The Art of Walking at Centre College in Danville, Ky., keeps students strolling -- literally. Students spend mornings at their desks -- the traditional academic setting -- studying Immanuel Kant's "

"Our discussions in the morning sessions are as hard as marble. Sometimes we need something like a chisel and hammer to get through to the ideas," philosophy instructor Ken Keffer says in a release. "The afternoon walks flow like water in comparison, loosen tongues in the free play of unsupervised conversation. More interestingly, the adventurous, wild and curious nature of the students comes out, something you see less easily, if at all, in class. You don't have to go far to walk." The Joy of Garbage at Santa Clara University is not a YouTube video class where your offspring films his dorm room. But it does carry a similar yuck factor. Apparently, the mold, methane and lots of decomposing, dead and rotting things don't scare students away. Environmental studies instructor Virginia Matzek says in a school release that the syllabus goes far beyond "why recycling is good," and covers the science and consequences of what humans consume and discard.

Daring Divas. Students climb trees for P.E. credit at Cornell University. According to High Adventure: Tree Climbing teaches students how to "get up into the canopy of any tree, to move around, even to climb from one tree to another without touching the ground."

Carpe Deliciousness. Harvard University's Science of Cooking attracts almost 700 students who sign up for a lottery to be one of the 350 who make it into the kitchen. Student Lingbo Li, a senior and student in the class, has become the campus foodie with her own blog about what goes on when baking molten chocolate cakes and other culinary adventures. She also heads the Culinary Society of Campus. "We've got renowned chefs from around the world coming into our class," she tells ParentDish.

Mergers and Acquisitions. Exploring the connections between their playlists and tunes, students at Miami University are enrolling in Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. My 17-year-old daughter is drifting away from me! What should I do? Should I Keep Loaning Money to My Adult Daughter? My 17-Year-Old Is Drifting Away! What Should I Do? How Can I Get My Child to Do His Best on His Homework?

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Google Sues Allegedly Rogue Prescription Drug Advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
PC World - Online

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court. "It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures. It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government [agencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

Return to Top



Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

(09-22) 13:30 PDT -- Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court.

In addition to pursuing the alleged violators, Google hopes that its action also serves as a deterrent against other illegal medicine peddlers, Google said on Tuesday.

Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures.

Google filed a similar lawsuit against peddlers of shady get-rich-quick schemes that use the company's name and brand to attract customers.

It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government gencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

However, this scenario is unlikely to materialize for two reasons: the defendants in this case probably won't fight the allegations and the AdWords contract has fared very well in court in the past, Goldman said.

Return to Top



Google sues allegedly rogue prescription drug advertisers | View Clip
09/22/2010
Tech World Australia

Google is at its wit's end dealing with illegal sellers of prescription drugs that market medicines on its ad network, so it has decided to take some of these allegedly rogue advertisers to court. Google has struggled with the problem for years, Michael Zwibelman, a Google litigation counsel, said in a blog post.

"It's been an ongoing, escalating cat-and-mouse game -- as we and others build new safeguards and guidelines, rogue online pharmacies always try new tactics to get around those protections and illegally sell drugs on the web," he wrote.

Rogue prescription drug sellers have increased in number and become more sophisticated in their dealings, and "a small percentage" of them have been able to dodge Google's efforts to block them from running ads on its network, according to Zwibelman. This occurs despite Google's tightening of its advertiser verification process and other screening and protection measures. It's critical for Google to ensure that its advertisers don't lead its users into trouble, whether it is to a malware-infested site or an online scam. Whenever this happens, victims understandably become distrustful and less likely to click on a Google ad.

However, it is hard for Google to weed out all crooks from its system, because it sells most of its pay-per-click search ads to its marketers using its self-serve AdWords online system, so its relationship with most of its advertisers is hardly personal. Google has more than 1 million advertisers using AdWords.

Google filed its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, alleging that the defendants are "rogue online pharmaceutical sellers" who misused AdWords and violated its terms and conditions of use.

Only one defendant is identified with a full name, while 49 others are called "John Doe" because their true names and locations are unknown. Google will try to identify more defendants later, according to the complaint.

Google seeks that the court bar these advertisers from attempting to use AdWords and that damages will be awarded to the company.

It's not unprecedented for Web publishers to sue rogue advertisers, but it's also not a common occurrence, because publishers have many ways of dealing with the problem without having to engage in litigation, according to a legal expert.

Thus, Google's motives for filing this lawsuit likely go beyond a desire to chase away from AdWords the specific defendants and deter others, said Eric Goldman, associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law and director of its High Tech Law Institute.

For one, Google may be trying to promote goodwill with government regulators, which often criticize search engines over ads that the regulators consider as promoting illegal products and activities, such as the unauthorized sale of prescription drugs, he said.

"Google's move here may be a part of a broader campaign to signal to government [agencies] that Google is serious about helping them," Goldman said.

"Google may not even care if it wins, frankly. It may be enough that bringing this lawsuit serves as evidence that it can show to the government that Google is on its side and trying to help," he said.

The lawsuit could also help Google reduce its liability exposure if one of these vendors gets criminally prosecuted and it comes to light that they marketed their products using AdWords, Goldman said.

While Google stands to benefit in various ways from this lawsuit, there is also a small risk that the case could backfire. By alleging breach of contract, Google opens the door for the defendants to challenge the validity of the AdWords terms and conditions, Goldman said.

An adverse ruling by the judge against Google on this contract issue could create big problems by potentially limiting Google's ability to control certain advertiser behavior on AdWords, he said.

Return to Top



Title: The Truth about Leadership: The No-fads, Heart-of-the-Matter Facts You Need to Know | View Clip
09/22/2010
The Nation - Thailand

A fresh look at what it means to lead from two of the biggest names in leadership.

In these turbulent times, leaders need to move beyond pessimistic predictions, trendy fads and simplistic solutions. They need to turn to what's real and what's proven. In their engaging new book, Kouzes and Posner reveal 10 time-tested truths that show what every leader must know, the questions they must be prepared to answer and the real-world issues they are likely to face.

Based on 30 years of research, more than one million responses to Kouzes' and Posner's leadership assessments, and the questions people most want leaders to answer, this book explores the fundamental, enduring truths of leadership that hold constant regardless of context or circumstance. "The Truth about Leadership" shows emerging leaders what they need to know to be effective, and fans of "The Leadership Challenge" - an earlier title from these authors - will find a new look at the real challenges leaders face today

Drawing from cases spanning three generations of leaders from around the world, this is a book that leaders can use to do their real and necessary work - bringing about the essential changes that will renew organisations and communities.

James M Kouzes is the dean's executive professor of leadership at Santa Clara University's Leavey School of Business. Barry Z Posner is professor of leadership at Santa Clara University, where he served as dean of the Leavey School of Business for 12 years. Together, they are the bestselling authors of more than a dozen books on leadership. They are among the most sought-after scholars and educators on the subjects of leadership and leadership development.

For more information, visit www.truthaboutleadership.com

Title: Conversations on Leadership: Wisdom from Global Management Gurus

Author: Lan Liu

A veritable who's who in leadership, "Conversations on Leadership" carries a series of dialogues between author Lan Liu and 13 of the most influential thinkers in the world of leadership: John Kotter, Warren Bennis, Howard Gardner, James March, Jim Kouzes, Noel Tichy, Bill George, Peter Senge, Jerry Porras and Joseph Badaracco jr provide a broad spectrum of views from the United States; Manfred Kets de Vries offers a European perspective and China's Cho-yun Hsu and India's Debashis Chatterjee add a distinctly Asian flavour to the mix.

These masters, with varied backgrounds in management, history, and psychology, address the vital leadership issues: What are the essential qualities of leadership? How do we develop leaders? Does culture matter in leadership? How does leadership differ from management? How do we lead effectively? With each leader's distinctive approach, their answers, combined in one volume, provide a panoramic view and a thorough understanding of leadership.

The conversational format lends immediacy and the author has been able to summarize and integrate the eight disciplines of leadership for quick and actionable guidance for any leadership practitioner.

For more information visit www.wiley.com

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THERE'S ALSO THE "JOY OF GARBAGE" AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY.
09/22/2010
TV 5 News at 11 PM - WNEM-TV

NEW PHENOMENON IS SWEEPING COLLEGE CAMPUSES AND BRINGING AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE STANDARD MATH 101 CLASS. EDUCATION EXPERTS SAY NON-TRADITIONAL CLASSES, INSPIRED BY EVERYTHING FROM HOMER SIMPSON TO HEAVY METAL, ARE THE COURSES OF THE FUTURE. SOME OF THE CLASSES OFFERED RIGHT NOW GAGA FOR GAGA, AT THE UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA, ANALYZES SOCIAL BOUNDARIES. THERE'S ALSO THE "JOY OF GARBAGE" AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. THE CLASS LOOKS AT THE CONSEQUENCES OF WHAT WE CONSUME AND DISCARD. AND AT MIAMI UNIVERSITY, STUDENTS ARE LEARNING THE TECHNOLOGY AND HISTORY OF HEAVY METAL MUSIC. THE TIGERS ARE OUT OF THE PLAYOFF RACE, BUT, THEY HAVE TO BE ENCOURAGED WITH WHAT MIGHTY MAX SCHERZER IS BRINGING TO THE MOUND, SCHERZER WAS SENSATIONAL AGAIN TONIGHT, AS THE TIGERS WRAPPED UP THE ROYALS, KID ROCK AT COMERICA, SCHERZER, (KEEPS GETTING BETTER), 2 HITS IN 7 2/3 INNINGS, STRIKES OUT BILLY BUTLER, THE TIGERS HELP MAX OUT WITH THIS SLICK PLAY, JARROD DYSON, WATCH WILL RHYMES, FLIPS TO JOHNNY PERALTA, GREAT 4-6-3 DP, KYLE DAVIES RETIRED THE FIRST 12 TIGERS, BRENNAN BOSCH, (A STRONG SEPTEMBER), TO THE GAP, DRIVES IN TWO, 65 RBI, LEADS ALL AL ROOKIES, BRANDON INGE, POLISHES OFF A 3-RUN 5TH, SINGLE, SCORES BOSCH, THE TIGERS GO ON TO BEAT THE ROYALS 4-2, LAST NIGHT, THE MINNESOTA TWINS POPPED THE CORK FOR BEING THE FIRST MAJOR LEAGUE TEAM TO CLINCH A SPOT IN THE 2010 POST SEASON, THIS CHAMPAGNE PARTY WAS A CELEBRATION OF THE TWINS WINNING THEIR 6TH AL CENTRAL CHAMPIONSHIP IN 9 YEARS, MINNESOTA HAS A CHANCE TO EARN HOME-FIELD ADVANTAGE IN THE FIRST TWO ROUNDS OF THE PLAYOFFS, WHERE THEY WILL LIKELY FACE THE RAYS OR THE YANKEES, THE RED WINGS FACED OFF THE PRESEASON TONIGHT IN PITTSBURGH, A FEW PEOPLE IN THE RED WINGS ORGANIZATION WONDERED IF JIMMY HOWARD COULD BE AN EFFECTIVE NHL GOALIE, BUT YOU DON'T HEAR THOSE DOUBTS ANYMORE, AND, THAT'S BECAUSE HOWARD FINISHED THE SEASON WITH A 37-15-AND-10 RECORD, AND WAS A FINALIST FOR ROOKIE OF THE YEAR, HOWARD STARTED MOST OF LAST SEASON, BUT BGEAN THE YEAR AS THE WINGS NUMBER 2 GOALIE, HE IS NOW NUMBER ONE ON THE TEAM'S DEPTH CHART, AND FOLLOWING YESTERDAY'S RED &WHITE GAME IN TRAVERSE CITY, HE SPOKE ABOUT SHORING UP HIS PLAY IN THE CREASE, GOOD THING TONIGHT'S RED WINGS GAME AGAINST THE PENGUINS DOESN'T COUNT, DETROIT LOSING ITS PRESEASON OPENER 5-1, ROOSLAN SUH-LAY, THE LONE GOAL SCORER FOR THE WINGS, (CHRIS OSGOOD AND THOMAS MCCOLLUM IN THE NETS), RYAN CRAIG SCORED A PAIR OF GOALS FOR PITTSBURGH, NEXT UP CHICAGO AT THE JOE, FRIDAY NIGHT, IT COULD BE HERE TODAY, NHL TOMORROW FOR SAGINAW SPIRIT FORWARD MICHAEL SGARBOSSA, THE SAN JOSE SHARKS HAVE SIGNED HIM TO AN ENTRY LEVEL CONTRACT, SGARBOSSA, WHO IS ONLY 18, SCORED A HAT TRICK WITH SAN JOSE DURING CANADA'S YOUNGSTARS TOURNAMENT THIS MONTH, HE IS SET TO RETURN TO SAGINAW THIS WEEK IN TIME FOR THE TEAM'S SEASON OPENER IN KITCHENER ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 24TH, AS EXPECTED, WITH STARTING QUARTERBACK MATTHEW STAFFORD NOT PRACTICING TODAY, LIONS HEAD COACH JIM SCHWARTZ HAS NAMED SHAUN HILL AS THE STARTER FOR THE 2ND STRAIGHT GAME, DETROIT FACES THE VIKINGS ON SUNDAY, THE LIONS ARE TRYING TO SHAKE OF THE INJURY BUG, THEY OVERCAME LOSING STARTING WIDE RECEIVER NATE BURLESON ON THE FIRST PLAY OF THE GAME AGAINST THE EAGLES, THANKS TO A BIG GAME FROM JAHVID BEST, THEY PUT UP 32 POINTS AND MORE THAN 400-YARDS, BUT, THE LIONS MUST KEEP KEY PLAYERS HEALTHY, IF THEY ARE GOING TO START WINNING SOME GAMES, AD LIB OUT OF SPORTS STILL TO COME, AUTOMAKERS SCOLDED FOR ALL THE NEW TECHNOLOGY IN THEIR CARS. WHAT THE TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY SAYS THE PROBLEM IS WITH PROGRAMS LIKE FORD'S SYNC AND G-M'S NEW ONSTAR INTERNET SERVICE.

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Cheaper than buying: Online sites offer textbook rentals | View Clip
09/21/2010
KLFY-TV - Online

Skip the campus bookstore and rent textbooks online. (©DigitalTrends.com)

From Digital Trends

Can an eReader replace college textbooks?

Does the Fascinate surpass the Droid X as Verizon's best?

The 10 signs of cellphone addiction

Coming soon to a car near you: Facebook status via OnStar

New breakthrough to shrink computer chips even smaller

Google looks for speedier searching Apple announces new iPods, iTunes 10, iOS 4.1, and a new Apple TV

HP rolls out new notebooks and minis

Best cameras under $300

By Greg Mombert

Provided by

Dishing out cash every semester for new books that cost a bundle is probably one of the biggest gripes among college students. Renting, however, is an alternative that can save you money even when compared to buying used. There are many legitimate online companies that rent books and have been doing so for years. Below we've run down the list of our favorite online textbook rental sites so you can put some extra money towards paying back those nasty loans.

Prices will vary between stores depending on the book, so make sure you compare prices to get the best deal.

Chegg was launched in 2003 by co-founders Osman Rashid and Aayush Phumbhra as a Craigslist-like classified for college students to buy and sell pretty much anything. Textbooks were their biggest movers, and after seeing the success of online movie rental company Netflix, the founders decided to reposition the company as an online textbook rental service to students.

Chegg has no hidden fees, and offers three different rental periods: Semester: 125 days; Quarter: 85 days; and 60-Day rental. You also have the option of extending or buying your rental. The company does ask that you not to write in the rental, and limit your highlighting. Chegg offers standard shipping for $3.99 and free return shipping.

Also check out Chegg's handy iPhone app.

BookRenter was founded by Colin Barceloux, a Santa Clara University student who was fed up with paying for textbooks and started collecting discarded books and selling them online. He eventually realized that the process of buying, using, and selling a book was essentially renting it. BookRenter claims to be the first online book rental company, and is headquartered in San Jose, California.

BookRenter offers a little more flexibility in their rental periods than Chegg, with five different rental lengths: 30 days, 45 days, 60 days, Quarter (90 days), and Semester (125 days). If you want to keep your books permanently, your rental price will go towards the sale price of the book. Extensions of 10, 15, 30, 45, 60, or 90 days are also offered at an extra cost. BookRenter offers free shipping both ways, along with paid options if you need your book in a hurry.

A more recent entry into the rental business is CampusBookRentals, which began renting textbooks in 2007. The company offers a huge selection of books, and has served customers on more than 5,000 different college campuses.

CampusBookRentals' rental periods are similar to Chegg's ,with three different options: Semester (130 days), Quarter (85 days), and Summer (55 days). Like the other services in our list, they allow you to purchase your rentals and offer 15- or 30-day rental extensions. They allow highlighting, and they also match BookRenter with free shipping both ways.

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Observers note uncertainty over future of Righthaven/R-J copyright suits | View Clip
09/21/2010
Las Vegas Sun

Righthaven judge: Review-Journal ‘implied license' defense may have merit (9-20-2010)

Defendants fight back against Righthaven copyright lawsuits (9-20-2010)

Copyright lawsuit filed against group fighting Pahrump prison (9-15-2010)

Righthaven settles 2 lawsuits over R-J story copyrights (9-13-2010)

Another company fights back against copyright lawsuit (9-11-2010)

Quick settlement reached in copyright lawsuit against PR company (9-10-2010)

Texas woman emerges as vocal critic of copyright lawsuit firm (9-9-2010)

Righthaven CEO defends company during roundtable discussion (9-9-2010)

Copyright lawsuits filed against U.S. Marijuana Party, dating website (9-9-2010)

Righthaven's suit against Sharron Angle draws increased attention (9-8-2010)

Defendant accuses Righthaven of misusing legal system (9-5-2010)

Sharron Angle hit with R-J copyright infringement lawsuit (9-3-2010)

Righthaven wins key ruling as new criticism leveled over suits (9-3-2010)

Righthaven sues D.C.-based group over R-J editorial posting (9-2-2010)

PR firm Kirvin Doak sued by Righthaven over Celine Dion story it promoted (9-1-2010)

Why we are writing about the R-J copyright lawsuits (9-1-2010)

Settlement reached after judge refuses to dismiss copyright suit (8-31-2010)

Judge questions Righthaven over R-J copyright suit costs (8-26-2010)

Consumer group offers help to defendants over R-J copyright suits (8-25-2010)

Righthaven CEO's law firm in merger (8-24-2010)

R-J accused of entrapment over copyright enforcement (8-23-2010)

Blogger asks to pay $200 to close R-J copyright suit (8-20-2010)

2 lawsuits over R-J copyrights lift total to 100 (8-19-2010)

Website operators use new defenses to fight R-J copyright suits (8-18-2010)

Righthaven reaches settlements in 2 cases over R-J copyrights (8-12-2010)

Righthaven sues Democratic Underground website over R-J posting (8-11-2010)

5 more websites sued over R-J story copyrights (8-10-2010)

Plenty of unanswered questions remain about the Las Vegas Review-Journal's online copyright infringement lawsuit campaign, observers said during a radio news discussion Tuesday.

The Review-Journal's owner, Stephens Media LLC, has invested in Righthaven LLC, a Las Vegas company that detects online infringements to Review-Journal stories, obtains copyrights to those stories and then sues website operators over the unauthorized postings on a retroactive basis.

The lawsuit campaign has attracted international attention and is of special interest in media and intellectual property legal circles -- largely because it's a departure from the usual newspaper industry practice of asking or demanding that website operators remove infringing material and/or replace the material with links to the source material.

The Review-Journal and Righthaven say the lawsuits are aimed at deterring copyright infringements, but defense attorneys and critics call the initiative a shakedown campaign against, typically, individuals, small-time websites and nonprofits.

While typically demanding $75,000 or more recently $150,000 in its suits, Righthaven often settles for a few thousand dollars -- often making it easier for defendants to settle than to hire attorneys to litigate against Righthaven.

Speaking Tuesday on KNPR Nevada Public Radio, Las Vegas freelance writer Steve Friess said he's supportive of legal efforts to stop copyright infringement because he's regularly seen his own material reposted without authorization -- reducing the value of those stories to him.

But Friess said it's unclear if the Review-Journal and Righthaven are truly working to stop copyright infringement -- or if they're looking to earn money with the lawsuits since, he said, the Review-Journal hasn't taken steps on its website to educate readers about how they can properly use Review-Journal material online.

"One of the things I have not seen on the Review-Journal website is any information about this," Friess said. "You'd think if they weren't just looking for money they would post a warning."

"Now I'm a little confused about what they're trying to do," he said.

The Review-Journal/Righthaven litigation strategy has been covered by the Review-Journal in a story on a Righthaven lawsuit against U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle and in blogs by Publisher Sherman Frederick.

Eric Goldman, associate professor at California's Santa Clara University School of Law and director of the High Tech Law Institute there, said he doubted the litigation strategy would be profitable in the long run as more defendants organize and fight back, increasingly keeping Righthaven attorneys busy researching and writing legal briefs and making court appearances.

Goldman noted that once federal judges or juries get around to deciding damages in the contested cases, the typical Righthaven demand of $75,000 or $150,000 could be slashed to awards of just $200 or $750.

"The business model assumes they're going to get quick settlements from a majority of the cases. Because of their (Righthaven's) tactics, defendants are organizing. ... The more defendants that choose to fight, it makes it harder for Righthaven."

Of the potential judgments as low as $200 for so-called innocent infringers, Goldman said: "If that's the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, the money isn't going to be there" for Righthaven to be profitable.

But Peter Menell, professor of law and director of UC Berkeley University's Center for Law & Technology, said some of the copyright lawsuits could be decided on summary judgment motions -- meaning there are no expenses for a trial.

Even at trial, juries could be sympathetic to Righthaven as one was in a copyright infringement case involving a Boston University student hit with a $675,000 judgment last year for unauthorized music file downloading and sharing -- though that amount was slashed by a federal judge to $67,500.

Menell noted Righthaven is claiming statutory damages and attorneys fees.

With statutory damages -- which don't require a showing of economic loss and which Righthaven says are in place as a deterrent to copyright infringement -- there's not as much legal work as in proving actual economic damages.

"You might be able to make it work," Menell said of the Righthaven business model.

But Goldman said if Righthaven is "trying to clean up the Internet, there's a much more cost-effective way to do that."

That would be for Righthaven and the Review-Journal to ask or demand that infringing material be taken down, which many Righthaven defendants have said they would have done if they had received such a request. But Righthaven has argued it's not cost-effective for newspapers to send such requests given the huge numbers of infringing websites.

Colleen Lynn of Austin, Texas, runs the nonprofit DogsBite.org organization seeking limits on dangerous dogs. She also crusades against Righthaven with her website righthavenvictims.blogspot.com, and said she was terrified when she learned of the Righthaven lawsuits and immediately moved to remove Review-Journal material from her website.

Lynn, who uses news stories from around the country to document dog attacks so policy makers, the media and others have access to the information, hasn't been sued by Righthaven.

But she took issue with the Review-Journal calling individuals and groups like she's involved with content thieves.

"This whole idea of calling groups like ours criminals and thieves is un-American," she said.

Lynn acknowledges that in the past she didn't ask for permission to archive news stories from the Review-Journal and other news sources. Numerous other nonprofits have said in response to Righthaven that they too archived thousands of stories from around the country for years with no objections until Righthaven came along.

A big reason for archiving the information, Lynn said, was that newspaper links sometimes disappear after a few months.

Lynn, in response to Righthaven, said she's now found a service that will allow her access to the required news archives without putting her in jeopardy of a copyright infringement lawsuit.

Menell noted that the backdrop of the situation is that the newspaper industry and journalism in general have suffered during the Internet era because of a lack of advertising support for online news content.

He said there are ways for people to avoid becoming copyright infringers by simply channeling website users back to the journalism sources that produce the material at issue.

The most common such method, encouraged by the Las Vegas Sun and many other newspapers, is for website operators to post links with at most the first paragraph or a few sentences rather than entire stories.

Separately, Righthaven filed two more copyright infringement lawsuits on Monday in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas -- bringing to 131 the number of lawsuits it has filed in that court since March alleging online infringements of Stephens Media LLC stories -- mostly stories from the Review-Journal.

The latest defendants are:

-- EMP Media Inc. and three individuals Righthaven says are associated with the company: Neil Infante, Shad Applegate and Burak Baskan. Righthaven says EMP is a Nevada company that has a website called www.eroticmp.com.

The website offers reviews on massage parlors around the world to paying subscribers. The defendants are accused of displaying on the site a July 21 Review-Journal story about the closure of a Las Vegas massage business because of prostitution arrests there.

It's unclear if the story was posted by one or more of the defendants or by a message-board user.

Full credit to the Review-Journal and a link to the Review-Journal website were included with the post on eroticmp.com, court records show.

-- Donald K. Schultz and Travis Nagle, whom Righthaven says are associated with the website www.donatdawn.com, where someone allegedly posted a July 29 Review-Journal story about Sen. Harry Reid participating in an energy summit at UNLV.

Full credit and a link were provided to the Review-Journal for the story on the donatdawn website, which covers energy and environmental issues.

Schultz says on the website he worked at the California Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and that he retired in 2008 from the CPUC's Division of Ratepayer Advocates.

As in all the recent Righthaven cases, the company in both lawsuits seeks damages of $150,000 apiece and forfeiture of the defendants' website domain names.

In its usual boilerplate lawsuit language, Righthaven charged in both cases: "The defendants displayed, and continue to display, the infringement on the website. The defendants did not seek permission, in any manner, to reproduce, display, or otherwise exploit the work (stories). The defendants were not granted permission, in any manner, to reproduce, display, or otherwise exploit the work."

Requests for comment were placed with the defendants.

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CALIFORNIA
09/21/2010
Los Angeles Times

A prisoner serving a life sentence for setting an arson fire that killed three people received a chance to prove his innocence Monday after an appeals court considered new scientific evidence in the case.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals revived an appeal by George A. Souliotes, convicted of setting a 1997 fire that killed a woman and her two children, even though his lawyers missed a legal deadline in filing it.

The panel gave Souliotes the opportunity to try to persuade a trial judge that he could not have discovered new scientific evidence that supported his innocence any earlier.

If the judge agrees, Souliotes could then try to prove his innocence.

Souliotes' prosecution relied heavily on evidence that the fire was started with a flammable liquid and that its residues were found on Souliotes' shoes. A scientist years later showed that the substance on the shoes was different from what was found at the fire.

That evidence proves Souliotes is innocent, his lawyers argued.

But in a loss for Souliotes, the 9th Circuit limited his appeal, ruling 2 to 1 that the missed deadline barred him from presenting other claims, including his contention that his defense lawyers at trial were inadequate.

Judge Thomas S. Zilly, in a partial dissent, called Souliotes' claims "compelling" and complained that proving actual innocence under the law was nearly impossible.

An innocence claim alone requires "an 'extraordinarily high' showing," Zilly wrote, quoting a precedent, "stronger than what is required to establish insufficiency of the evidence to convict and going beyond demonstrating doubt about guilt."

Zilly contended that the Greek immigrant also should be allowed to challenge his conviction on incompetent counsel.

During Souliotes' first trial, which resulted in a hung jury, defense lawyers called 14 witnesses, Zilly said. During the second, which ended in conviction, the same lawyers called only one witness who had testified for the prosecution in the previous trial.

Souliotes, 69, a landlord in Modesto, was convicted of killing his tenants Michelle Jones and her two children, Daniel Jr. and Amanda. They died of smoke inhalation. The prosecution contended that Souliotes was in debt and set the fire for insurance money.

A federal trial judge had thrown out Souliotes' appeal because his defense team filed it five days after the deadline.

Linda Starr, legal director of Santa Clara University's Northern California Innocence Project, said she was gratified that the appeals court resuscitated her client's case but would appeal the portion of the ruling that limited Souliotes' claims.

"It is an uphill battle showing actual innocence, not because he isn't actually innocent, but because the standard is impossibly high," Starr said.

Deputy Atty. Gen. Kathleen A. McKenna, who argued the case for the prosecution, was unavailable for comment.

maura.dolan@latimes.com

Copyright © 2010 Los Angeles Times

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Man sentenced to life in prison will get to argue his innocence | View Clip
09/21/2010
Los Angeles Times - Online

A prisoner serving a life sentence for setting an arson fire that killed three people received a chance to prove his innocence Monday after an appeals court considered new scientific evidence in the case.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals revived an appeal by George A. Souliotes, convicted of setting a 1997 fire that killed a woman and her two children, even though his lawyers missed a legal deadline in filing it.

The panel gave Souliotes the opportunity to try to persuade a trial judge that he could not have discovered new scientific evidence that supported his innocence any earlier. If the judge agrees, Souliotes could then try to prove his innocence.

Souliotes' prosecution relied heavily on evidence that the fire was started with a flammable liquid and that its residues were found on Souliotes' shoes. A scientist years later showed that the substance on the shoes was different from what was found at the fire. That evidence proves Souliotes is innocent, his lawyers argued.

But in a loss for Souliotes, the 9th Circuit limited his appeal, ruling 2 to 1 that the missed deadline barred him from presenting other claims, including his contention that his defense lawyers at trial were inadequate.

Judge Thomas S. Zilly, in a partial dissent, called Souliotes' claims "compelling" and complained that proving actual innocence under the law was nearly impossible.

An innocence claim alone requires "an 'extraordinarily high' showing," Zilly wrote, quoting a precedent, "stronger than what is required to establish insufficiency of the evidence to convict and going beyond demonstrating doubt about guilt."

Zilly contended that the Greek immigrant also should be allowed to challenge his conviction on incompetent counsel.

During Souliotes' first trial, which resulted in a hung jury, defense lawyers called 14 witnesses, Zilly said. During the second, which ended in conviction, the same lawyers called only one witness who had testified for the prosecution in the previous trial.

Souliotes, 69, a landlord in Modesto, was convicted of killing his tenants Michelle Jones and her two children, Daniel Jr. and Amanda. They died of smoke inhalation. The prosecution contended that Souliotes was in debt and set the fire for insurance money.

A federal trial judge had thrown out Souliotes' appeal because his defense team filed it five days after the deadline.

Linda Starr, legal director of Santa Clara University's Northern California Innocence Project, said she was gratified that the appeals court resuscitated her client's case but would appeal the portion of the ruling that limited Souliotes' claims.

"It is an uphill battle showing actual innocence, not because he isn't actually innocent, but because the standard is impossibly high," Starr said.

Deputy Atty. Gen. Kathleen A. McKenna, who argued the case for the prosecution, was unavailable for comment.

maura.dolan@latimes.com

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The Maneater - Fewer professors earning tenure | View Clip
09/21/2010
Maneater - Online

City Council approves city budget, College Ave. crosswalks

Economic turmoil could contribute to the decline in tenured professors.

The American Association of University Professors released "Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments," a report about the changing nature of employment in higher education.

According to the report, the tenure system was created to regulate payment and guard academic freedom. Since the 1970s, teaching-intensive positions have shifted from largely tenure-track to non-tenure-track faculty members. In 2007, 68.8 percent of U.S. faculty were non-tenure-track.

Jeremy Nienow, Minneapolis Technical and Community School faculty member, said as a non-tenure-track faculty member he sees job security and academic freedom as a large benefit of the tenure system.

Nienow said the shift from tenured to contingent faculty changes the way teachers think about their profession.

"Faculty are really going to be driven to look at very different things," Nienow said. "How can I appease an administration so that I can have a job? Not necessarily, what kind of research should I do?"

Santa Clara University professor Marc Bousquet said the shift from tenured to contingent faculty means many professors are substantially less qualified today than they were 40 years ago.

Bousquet said the appeal of contingent faculty is lower wages. Most non-tenure-track professors have a master's degree, which is a largely underemployed group of people.

The report stated contingent employees in some research-intensive positions work in troubling conditions.

Bousquet said researchers in the science and mathematical fields often spend three to six years completing their Ph.D., then spend four to 10 years in post-doctorate appointments working for $30,000 to $40,000 a year, which is extremely low for someone with a Ph.D. Researchers will work for low wages for years in hopes of becoming tenured.

The AAUP report stated the best way to stabilize the faculty infrastructure is to convert contingent positions to tenure-track positions.

"It's obvious to most people that the expenses of higher education have gone up massively, despite an extremely aggressive program of lowering faculty wages by shifting to a contingent employment system," Bousquet said.

Bousquet said universities have been spending on nonacademic activities such as sports, fiscal plans, landscaping, administration and capital activities. These other activities have taken away from faculty salaries.

The MU Collected Rules and Regulations define tenure as the right to be free from dismissal without cause, and states it is imperative in a higher education system that aims to fulfill its obligations to the common good. The rules also emphasize the connection between academic freedom and the tenure system.

A faculty member must be recommended by a department chairperson and tenure committee and wait a maximum of six years to be considered for tenure at MU.

Faculty Council Chairwoman Leona Rubin said the shift from tenure track to contingent faculty members is happening at MU, and the number of tenured and non-tenured faculty members is about equal. Some of the contingent faculty at MU have been employed for 20 years.

"We need to look at the faculty that we believe are so valuable to the mission of our university that we keep them that long," Rubin said. "If we keep them and we need them, we should reconsider what position we keep them in, and this might be one reason for reevaluating the tenure system as it is currently employed."

Rubin said the committee has been asked several times to reevaluate the tenure system for a variety of reasons, but it is very difficult to evaluate faculty performing interdisciplinary research or those who have a very strong interest in economic development.

Forsee, curators remain tight-lipped on conference realignment

Curators pass 2011 budget without increases for faculty salaries

Curators discuss budget, faculty compensation for 2011, 2012

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Man sentenced to life in prison will get to argue his innocence | View Clip
09/21/2010
Morning Call - Online

Judges revive appeal by man convicted of setting fire that killed 3 tenants, despite his lawyers missing legal deadline. The man says evidence proving his innocence could not have been found earlier.

A prisoner serving a life sentence for setting an arson fire that killed three people received a chance to prove his innocence Monday after an appeals court considered new scientific evidence in the case.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals revived an appeal by George A. Souliotes, convicted of setting a 1997 fire that killed a woman and her two children, even though his lawyers missed a legal deadline in filing it.

The panel gave Souliotes the opportunity to try to persuade a trial judge that he could not have discovered new scientific evidence that supported his innocence any earlier. If the judge agrees, Souliotes could then try to prove his innocence.

Souliotes' prosecution relied heavily on evidence that the fire was started with a flammable liquid and that its residues were found on Souliotes' shoes. A scientist years later showed that the substance on the shoes was different from what was found at the fire. That evidence proves Souliotes is innocent, his lawyers argued.

But in a loss for Souliotes, the 9th Circuit limited his appeal, ruling 2 to 1 that the missed deadline barred him from presenting other claims, including his contention that his defense lawyers at trial were inadequate.

Judge Thomas S. Zilly, in a partial dissent, called Souliotes' claims "compelling" and complained that proving actual innocence under the law was nearly impossible.

An innocence claim alone requires "an 'extraordinarily high' showing," Zilly wrote, quoting a precedent, "stronger than what is required to establish insufficiency of the evidence to convict and going beyond demonstrating doubt about guilt."

Zilly contended that the Greek immigrant also should be allowed to challenge his conviction on incompetent counsel.

During Souliotes' first trial, which resulted in a hung jury, defense lawyers called 14 witnesses, Zilly said. During the second, which ended in conviction, the same lawyers called only one witness who had testified for the prosecution in the previous trial.

Souliotes, 69, a landlord in Modesto, was convicted of killing his tenants Michelle Jones and her two children, Daniel Jr. and Amanda. They died of smoke inhalation. The prosecution contended that Souliotes was in debt and set the fire for insurance money.

A federal trial judge had thrown out Souliotes' appeal because his defense team filed it five days after the deadline.

Linda Starr, legal director of Santa Clara University's Northern California Innocence Project, said she was gratified that the appeals court resuscitated her client's case but would appeal the portion of the ruling that limited Souliotes' claims.

"It is an uphill battle showing actual innocence, not because he isn't actually innocent, but because the standard is impossibly high," Starr said.

Deputy Atty. Gen. Kathleen A. McKenna, who argued the case for the prosecution, was unavailable for comment.

maura.dolan@latimes.com

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Wagner College gets community-service laurel
09/21/2010
Staten Island Advance

Wagner College was one of six learning institutions nationwide to win a Higher Education Civic Engagement Award from the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars, a nonprofit that seeks to spread awareness about community service.

The Grymes Hill school was recognized for encouraging students to take their learning from the classroom and apply it to the world around them. For instance, through the school's Civic Innovations program, students identified economic and other needs within the Port Richmond neighborhood, which is known for its burgeoning immigrant population.

Through partnerships with local non-profits - such as El Centro, United Activities Unlimited, Meals on Wheels and others - the students work to educate residents about social justice, health, the environment and other aspects of society.

According to the school, a 2009 national survey on student engagement found that 71 percent of Wagner's freshman class and 87 percent of seniors participated in community service or volunteer work.

"Wagner College is a true role model for civic engagement in the academic community," said Mike Smith, president of the Washington Center. "The college is teaching students a quality that can't be learned in the classroom alone the importance of getting involved, giving back and making a difference."Wagner was selected from 120 nominees. The other five winners were Miami Dade College; Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianpolis; Santa Clara University; the College of New Jersey, and Wstern Carolina University.

Copyright © 2010 Staten Island Advance. All Rights Reserved.

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First Capital Names DAcquisto VP, BDO in San Francisco | View Clip
09/20/2010
ABF Journal

First Capital announced that Bob D'Acquisto has been named vice president and business development officer at First Capital. D'Acquisto will primarily be responsible for marketing and business development in the San Francisco and northern California region and will be opening an office in San Francisco.

Prior to First Capital, D'Acquisto was managing director/vice president at Snowbird Capital Management where he was the top producer for the company since fund inception, focusing on debt investments. He was also responsible for underwriting, loan document preparation, negotiation, due diligence and portfolio management.

“I am quite pleased that Bob chose to bring his wealth of experience and knowledge to First Capital,” said Ron Garber, EVP and Western region manager at First Capital. “We all welcome Bob to our growing team.”

D'Acquisto is a member and active participant of the Association for Corporate Growth, San Francisco Chapter, International Business Broker Association, Alliance of Merger and Acquisition Advisors and Commercial Finance Association. He was also a member and board participant of Young Entrepreneurs Organization (formerly YEO, now EO) in Silicon Valley.

“I am delighted to now be a part of such a professional and well-respected company in the industry,” said D'Acquisto. “I am looking forward to building upon the success of First Capital and also looking forward to growing our business in the northern California market.”

He is a graduate of Santa Clara University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Commerce and Marketing.

First Capital, a commercial finance company, provides working capital financing ranging from $5 million to $20 million primarily to small- and middle-market businesses.

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Workers in 50s face tough job market | View Clip
09/19/2010
Arizona Daily Sun

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target, "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live."

"Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere," Kahn added.

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

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Job woes hit hard at older workers \
09/19/2010
Buffalo News

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their children's college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job early last year and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

A jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression has resulted in a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion.

Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Tom Plante, a Santa Clara University professor and psychologist.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-older set.

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, her three-bedroom townhouse has been appraised below the price she paid for it six years ago, and her health care costs have climbed, since she is required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many others of 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Copyright © 2010 The Buffalo News

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/19/2010
Charlotte Observer - Online

SAN JOSE, Calif. In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin. Their 401(k)s have been cut down. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group. "It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere." "Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement." It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante. "If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people." Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-older set. The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn. Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group. Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance." "Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally." .

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Layoffs harder on workers in their 50s | View Clip
09/19/2010
Columbus Dispatch - Online

SAN JOSE, Calif. â Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kidsâ college bills come due. And while younger workers might have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to âreinventâ themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must ârecalibrateâ their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

âIf you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time,â Plante said. âFolks in their 50s donât have that much wiggle room. Plus thereâs this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. Itâs as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives.â

The jobs picture isnât getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2âpercent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some might never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, sheâs seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health-care costs climb as sheâs required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? âItâs down a lot,â Cox said. âWhen I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks.â

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45âpercent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called âlate baby boomersâ will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Like many of her fellow 79âmillion baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

âRetirement is fading further out,â she said. âNow Iâm thinking I canât stop until Iâm well into my 60s. But weâre all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I donât know. For now, I just try to put it out of my head.â

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Key call in Ravens-Bengals game wrong | View Clip
09/19/2010
FOXSports.com

Mike Pereira was the NFL's Vice President of Officiating from 2004-09, having spent the five seasons previous to that as the league's Director of Officiating. He also served as an NFL game official when he acted as side judge for two seasons (1997-98).

Pereira was born and raised in Stockton, Calif., and graduated from Santa Clara University in 1972 with a B.A. in Finance. Pereira now lives in Sacramento with his wife Gail.

VIEW ARTICLES BY MIKE PEREIRA

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Workers in 50s face steep climb back from layoffs
09/19/2010
Press of Atlantic City

'Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room.' They have to reinvent themselves after a job loss and deal with less valuable retirement accounts, experts say.\

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time job at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn asked. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraised below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she is required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head." \

Copyright © 2010 The Press of Atlantic City

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Three ethical questions that we should ask of ourselves every day | View Clip
09/19/2010
Psychology Today - Online

Can you do the right thing daily?

In recent blog posts I have offered some reflections on ways to do the right thing by living more ethically. In this post, I'd like to suggest that we ask ourselves three important questions each and every day. These include:

1. How do I want to be in the world?

2. Why do I want to be this way in the world?

3. What strategies must I use to remain true to my values and principles when I'm challenged or tested?

First, how do you want to be in the world? What are the principles or values that you hold near and dear to your heart and soul? Is it integrity, responsibility, concern for others, or what? Can you name several key principles or values that you think should be your mantra for living? I personally like the quote from the book of Micah (Chapter 6, verse 8) that guides me:

"And what does the Lord require of me? To love mercy, do justice, and walk humbly with God."

Thus, for me, we should aim to be compassionate, work for justice, and walk humbly (and never arrogantly) with God. Regardless of your religious tradition (or even if you don't have a religious tradition)... it sounds like a good way to live to me and something that I remind myself of daily: to focus on compassion, justice, and humility.

What principles or values make the most sense for you in your life? Write them down.

Second, why do you want to be this way in the world? Do you want to sleep well at night? Do you want to be a role model for your children? Do you want to live in a way that you need not be embarrassed or ashamed about your behavior? Do you want to live your life with a clear conscience? For me, these values are consistent with my ethical principles as well as my religious beliefs, practices, and tradition.

Why do you want to be a particular way in the world? Again, write it down.

Finally, what can you do to stay true to your values and principles even when tested? It is easy to say that you are ethical and think of yourself as a "good" person but what do you actually do when confronted with temptation? Do you say one thing and do another? To be successful in this regard you likely need to surround yourself with like minded people who share your values and principles for living and work hard to keep yourself away from problematic people or circumstances.

I gave a guest lecture in a business ethics class at a local college this past week and after my talk a student approached me privately with great distress in his face. He said, "I don't know what happened to me. I lost my way. I used to be such an ethical and moral person but somehow I've changed. Perhaps the people I hung out with was a factor and I stopped going to Church too. How can I find my way back again?"

No easy answers but I tried to supportively encourage him to get started with these three reflection questions and to get support from like minded people to do so. If he surrounds himself with people he can model and share similar values and ethical principles he'll likely gravitate towards better behavior (see social comparison and observational learning theory and research).

What ideas do you have to keep true to your values and principles? How do you maximize that you'll do the right thing when tempted to do otherwise?

What do you think? Can you do it?

Four Ways to Live More Ethically

Thomas Plante, PhD., ABPP is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Spirituality and Health Institute at Santa Clara University.

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DICK HENNING'S CELEBRITY TALK SHOW
09/19/2010
San Jose Mercury News

In the late 1960s, when Dick Henning launched a lecture series and a slate of concerts at Foothill College, the speakers got paid $600 apiece, and the concerts were enveloped in such thick clouds of marijuana smoke that the straight-arrow Henning preferred to stand outside while students in the gymnasium grooved to acts like Janis Joplin, the Fifth Dimension and Jefferson Airplane.

More than 40 years later, the smoke and the concert series are only memories. But Henning is still luring luminaries -- using much higher fees than in the old days -- to come to the Celebrity Forum, one of the most highly regarded speakers series in the country. Over the years, Henning has snagged celebs such as Colin Powell, Al Gore, Tom Brokaw, Margaret Thatcher, Cary Grant and nearly every contemporary U.S. president to speak as part of the annual series.

This year's roster of star lecturers includes ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair, pilot Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger and cellist Yo-Yo Ma in a season that begins Sept. 29 at Flint Center in Cupertino and continues until May.

"We live in an area where the most highly educated and highly inquisitive people want to stay up to date, current," Henning says. "They also want to look at new ideas, and they want more than a sound bite that they too often get on television."

Henning was director of student activities at Sunnyvale High School in 1967, when he applied for a job at Foothill College. What got him hired, he says, was his idea that a new concert and speakers series could convince frugal students a student activity fee was worth the money. The speakers series -- one of few in existence at the time -- caught on. Some students attended, but the majority of the audience was, and is, local residents ages 40 to 70, he says.

The genial, 75-year-old Henning, who lives with his wife, Paulette, in Mountain View on the border with Los Altos, also has convinced scientists and authors to speak. After dogged pursuit, he was the first to book the reclusive Grant as a speaker, in 1982.

"Dick has fashioned a wonderful series with tremendous staying power and also -- worth noting -- has inspired a half-dozen other series around the country," says Steven Barclay, director of the Steven Barclay Agency in Petaluma, who met Henning in the 1980s.

Today, the Celebrity Forum budget allots about $1 million a year to speakers' fees. This year's highest paid guest, Tony Blair, will pull in $125,000 a night for each of three nights. The least expensive speaker, paleontologist Dr. Louise Leakey, will make $12,000 a night. Ma, a higher-profile celeb, will earn $75,000 a night, while Boston Philharmonic Orchestra conductor Ben Zander gets $50,000 and "Three Cups of Tea" author Greg Mortenson will make $22,000. Rounding out the schedule are scholar Reza Aslan ($12,500) and Sullenberger ($45,000).

In addition to the money, Henning is offering better amenities than he did in the early days. Celebrities no longer bunk for the night in the home of a Los Altos resident; they can choose to stay either in San Francisco or at the new Rosewood Sand Hill hotel in Menlo Park. No more rides from Henning, either; speakers get picked up in limos.

"This is a huge business now," says Henning, noting that the rise of talent agencies helped drive speakers' fees way up over the years. "There's hardly a big-time, popular celebrity who doesn't think seriously about going on the speaker circuit after they've come out of their position or job. And they make so much money."

But sales of Celebrity Forum tickets have dropped for each of the past two years with the weak economy, Henning says. Tickets, available for the whole series only, start at $290. And with both ticket sales and the nation's current political polarization in mind, Henning decided not to include any politicians on this year's slate. "I don't want people to come to the Celebrity Forum and walk away angry, and that was starting to happen," he says.

On the other hand, he sometimes gets notes from ticket-holders telling him how much they enjoy the speakers. "Other people tell me as soon as they leave the theater they go down to Marie Callender's or somewhere for pie and coffee in a small group to talk about the speakers," he says. "So that is rewarding, when I hear those things."

Henning grew up in the Kern County oil town of Taft and took an early liking to drama and speech classes. "Most students were shy about getting up and talking, and I was never shy about getting up and talking," he says, laughing. "So I found those were easy classes."

He attended San Jose State University on a boxing scholarship, and later earned a master's degree from Santa Clara University and a doctorate in education administration from the University of Southern California. He taught drama at Sunnyvale High School starting in 1960, and he's still on stage 21 times a year, introducing seven lecturers, each of whom speaks three times during the stint with Celebrity Forum -- on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights. He also poses a half-hour of audience-generated questions to the speakers after each lecture.

It's too hard to name the best Celebrity Forum speaker ever, he says, but his recent favorites have been Thomas Friedman, Andrew Weil, Ken Burns, David Brooks and Doris Kearns Goodwin.

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd also made a memorable appearance a couple of years ago. After finally agreeing to speak, she was so nervous she was shaking before her talk, and carried with her a 150-page stack of notes printed out in enormous type, he says. The lip on the edge of the speaker's rostrum was too shallow to hold the stack, so the stage manager had to nail on an extra piece of wood just before curtain time.

"The lip is still there today; we call it the Maureen Dowd lip," says Henning with a laugh, who adds that, despite all her fretting, "the talk was great."

But even in his 43rd year of bringing in big-name guest speakers, Henning still sits in the front row feeling nervous at the beginning of almost every lecture, knowing that if the speaker is bad he'll hear about it from his many Los Altos friends and associates.

"You can't wait for that next speaker to come to erase that memory," he says. "I really feel responsible."

Contact Sue McAllister at 408-920-5833.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/18/2010
Bellingham Herald - Online

SAN JOSE, Calif. — In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your — ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market — or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

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UNTESTED: Can college students learn as well on iPads, e-books? | View Clip
09/18/2010
USA Today - Online

Folu Ani, a graduate of San Diego State University and a member of the Class of 2014 at University of California-Irvine School of Medicine, holds an iPad. Given to each member of the class, the iPads came pre-loaded with all the textbooks and software required to complete their first year of medical school.

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More on higher education: USA TODAY's Mary Beth Marklein offers insight on college admissions, classes and trends, and she wants to hear from you

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A searchable map and school statistics on all 100 Best Value Colleges of 2010 can be found at:

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By Mary Beth Marklein, USA TODAY

Oklahoma State University professor Bill Handy has big plans for the Apple iPad this fall. If the text messages he has received since the school announced he would test the tablet-style e-reader in some courses are any indication, students are eager to get their hands on the devices, too.

Handy, who teaches in the School of Media and Strategic Communications, is quick to stress that his intent is not to celebrate the new technology so much as to evaluate its effectiveness in the classroom.

"This is not research to prove that the iPad is great," he says. "There's a lot riding on what direction the university might take. If it's not beneficial, (I'll be) glad we figured that out early in the game."

Compared with traditional textbooks, the iPad and other devices for reading digital bookshave the potential to save on textbook costs in the long term, to provide students with more and better information faster, and — no small matter — to lighten the typical college student's backpack.

COLLEGE BLOG: Does technology change what we value in education?

TEXTBOOKS: E-books, new law may save college students cash

Yet the track record on campus so far for e-readers has been bumpy. Early trials of the Kindle DX, for example, drewcomplaints from students about clunky highlighting of text and slow refresh rates. Princeton and George Washington universities this spring found the iPad caused network problems. Federal officials in June cautioned colleges to hold off on using e-readers in the classroom unless the technology can accommodate disabled students.

Though many of those problems are being or have been addressed, some of the most tech-savvy students aren't quite ready to endorse the devices for academic use. And some educational psychologists suggest the dizzying array of options and choices offered by the ever-evolving technology may be making it harder to learn rather than easier.

"The challenge for working in the electronic age is that we have so much access to information but we still have the same brain we always had," says Richard Mayer, psychology professor at the University of California-Santa Barbara. He focuses on how multimedia can enhance learning. "The problem is not access to information. It is integrating that information and making sense out of it."

A matter of distraction

There's a lot to like about digital learning. Santa Clara University student Christopher Paschal, 19, for example, appreciated the search function in his economics e-textbook, and said the included video clips offered "an alternative method of learning," and eliminated "the monotony of endless pages of reading."

But ultimately, "I feel that I comprehend material better in regular textbooks," Paschal says. Why? For starters, it's more difficult to look at a computer screen when you're tired, he says, and harder to concentrate when Facebook, YouTube and e-mail are just a click away.

Also, he and others say, it may simply be that the technology is still unfamiliar. Whereas e-readers have taken off in the leisure-reading market, publishers have been slower to jump into the education market. Reasons vary, but one challenge for publishers is that reading for the purpose of gaining knowledge is a more complex process than reading for pleasure.

"Usually in a novel you're going through it from start to finish. In a textbook you're constantly flipping back and forth. You're all over the book a lot more often," says Matt Lilek, 22, a part-time computer science major at Joliet Junior College in Illinois. "Textbook publishers haven't had a chance to tailor things for the iPad. If publishers really get behind the iPad, I can see a day where it's the only thing I would bring to school."

Even then, some evidence suggests students see a downside to 24/7 interactivity when it comes to preparing for exams or doing homework. During visits last fall to libraries, coffee shops and other campus hangouts to analyze how students study, a test-prep company noted that, when it was time to study, cellphones, laptops and Kindles were put away.

"In today's ADD society, textbooks are pleasantly single-dimensional and finite," says Jeff Olson, vice president of research for Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions, whose team conducted observational studies. "When I asked study participants why they didn't use their laptops to look something up, I heard some version of 'because that's my distraction.' "

More may not be better

A host of research over the past decade has shown that even the option to click hyperlinks to related material can create confusion and weaken understanding. One study found reading comprehension declined as the number of clickable links increased. A 2005 review by researchers at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, of 38 studies found "very little support" for the idea that all those links to additional information enrich the reader's experience. A 2007 study published in Media Psychology raised similar concerns about add-ons such as sound and animation.

The online environment "promotes cursory reading, hurried and distracted thinking, and superficial learning," argues Nicholas Carr, who raises concerns about the long-term implications in The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brain, which was published in June. "The danger is you don't encourage people to think critically and, ultimately, you don't encourage them to think creatively."

Some of the newer devices try to mimic traditional study behavior with features such as the ability to highlight text and take notes in the margins. Still, the gee-whiz technology doesn't necessarily help students study better, suggests a study published this month in Journal of Educational Psychology. Students often highlight too much material, so building a highlighting function into the technology may simply enable students to continue an ineffective habit, the study found. "Worse, they may not even process or understand what they select," says study author Ken Kiewra, a professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Despite reservations, expectations remain high for e-reader technology on campuses. Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania and George Fox University in Oregon plan to give or phase in iPads for most students starting this fall. At a ceremony Friday, each member of the UC Irvine School of Medicine's incoming class of 2014 received not only the traditional white coat, but also a shiny new iPad, pre-loaded with everything necessary for the first year of course work.

Scores of others, including Reed College and North Carolina State University, plan to offer opportunities for students to test-drive iPads. And two-thirds of campus technology chiefs predicted last fall that e-books will become an "important platform for instructional resources" within five years, according to the Campus Computing Project.

Publishers, meanwhile, have big ideas for personalizing student learning. "That's the great promise," says Don Kilburn, president of Pearson Learning Solutions, a publisher of education materials.

More glitches are perhaps inevitable. But the technological advances "represent very real potential to remake education for the better," says Kaplan's Olson. "The potential for the textbook to come alive with interactivity ... will make the next several years of e-book innovation fascinating to watch."

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Health group targets McDonald's in new TV spot | View Clip
09/17/2010
ABC Local - Online

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- There is a new ad that has quickly gone viral on the Internet. It links McDonald's to heart attacks and death and it uses images, not words. It is certainly provocative, but will it change eating behavior?

The ad shows a man who has died and his wife grieving. Her husband is also clutching a half-eaten burger. The message is from the non-profit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, or PCRM. Its membership consists of 9,000 physicians from across the country.

The ad appeared on local Washington TV stations Thursday morning and will run on cable TV's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" Thursday night. The ad also has been posted on YouTube where it has logged about 500,000 hits. It was made at a cost of $20,000.

"McDonald's menu is full of fat, full of cholesterol, full of sodium, and those kinds of food choices increase your risk of heart disease and stroke and other health problems," says PCRM spokesman Patrick Sullivan.

Sullivan says PCRM doesn't have a large budget, but hopes to run the ad soon in selected cities with a high percentage of fast food consumption. He specifically mentioned Chicago (McDonald's corporate headquarters are in a Chicago suburb), Miami, and Los Angeles. It is likely to get considerable exposure online. PCRM says Washington was selected because it claims about 1,500 residents there died yearly from heart disease.

At the end, the golden arches appear, making it clear who's being criticized.

McDonald's issued this reaction: "This commercial is outrageous, misleading and unfair to all consumers. McDonald's trusts our customers to put such outlandish propaganda in perspective, and to make food and lifestyle choices that are right for them."

ABC showed the ad to consumers and they had mixed reactions whether it's effective.

When asked if he thought the ad conveyed a lot, San Jose resident Shane Hagerty said, "I didn't think so, really. I've seen things on the Internet that were more convincing and had more facts that would dissuade me more than that."

ABC7 spoke to Kit Yarrow, Ph.D., via Skype. She is a consumer psychologist at Golden Gate University.

"The average consumer today learns best with images and visuals, and that's what this spot is all about," said Yarrow.

Buford Barr disagrees. He teaches advertising and communications at Santa Clara University.

"I think people are going to go ahead and enjoy McDonald's as they always have because they haven't made a real case yet. It's a totally emotional one. It's a shock value one, and I don't think it's going to be very effective," said Barr.

While the ad ends with the suggestion to eat vegetarian, PCRM says they would be very happy if Americans would eat fewer fast food meals.

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Paul Braund Interview: The Business of Technology and Development | Blog | NextBillion.net | Development through Enterprise | View Clip
09/17/2010
Development through Enterprise

Rob Katz

November 9, 2006 - 09:37 am

Paul Braund Interview: The Business of Technology and Development

RIOS Institute (Research and Innovation for Organizations and Societies Institute) in Berkeley and Silicon Valley, California. He has worked as an architect and award-winning industrial designer and has developed numerous patents. He has spent 20 years working in technology research and development in Silicon Valley.

He has spent the past 5 years working on social development and finding appropriate technology transfers for developing countries, particularly in communications technology. He has supported and represented the UN-World Bank at conferences and various fact finding trips and workshops in developing countries, while maintaining independent work with numerous NGOs, small community groups and academic institutions who are helping to bring more human-centered innovation to development.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Paul in advance of the Silicon Valley Challenge Summit , which will bring together Silicon Valley's unique pool of talent, creativity and ambitions to further transform the region into a hub of the international network around the use of ICT for global development.

Rob Katz: How has your background in architecture and design prepared you to work in the field of international development?

Paul Braund: Staying focused on the social challenges - the human factor, the human interaction, the human scale, no matter how complex the technology, process or system - is one of the first things I learned as a designer. In addition, designers work collaboratively with many specialists to create appropriate solutions. Both of these things are crucial for development work.

In a world dominated by the thinking and processes of technologists and scientific specialists on the one hand, and commercial and government practice on the other, it is sometimes easy to forget that societies are usually judged by how they help support the underserved.

Exploring how ICT (Information Communications Technology) can help the underserved, as set out in the Millennium Development Goals, and rising to the challenge set forth by Kofi Annan to utilize best practices of public-private partnership is the agenda of the Center for Science, Technology, and Society at Santa Clara University. At the Summit, RiOS will lead a workshop that shows concretely how using design practices and techniques, along with social science methodologies, can address the human experience and social needs of development, by supporting appropriate innovation that make a real and meaningful difference in the lives of project recipients. There is a natural connection here to what we call universal design, whereby designers learn early on to critique, to be natural innovators and to move beyond codified practice and technique in search of better solutions for many different segments of society.

Development is complex, but like good design and architecture, it comes down to people and improving the quality of someone's life. Bringing people together and making things work is what it is all about, while working in collaboration with government policies or development programs, and taking into account cultural contexts. Being involved with anthropologists, and on-the-ground ethnographers helps localize projects - so we¹re talking about subtleties within both their design and their implementation phases. Participation on the ground is crucial to successful outcomes, and it is also a key principle of design. RiOS builds this participatory environment through human-driven development and research workshops. The fact is that there are many smaller solutions but no big easy fixes, and that development has to happen one community at a time.

RK: How do you respond to critics who say that these types of solutions cannot scale up?

PB: Well that's a big buzzword at the moment, scaleability. I think we need different and new models for development. We have the for-profit and the non-profit model. What we need is a combination using the best practices of both that allows us to gage social capital and gain. I am thinking about the no-loss company; great examples of this model would be the original Aravind Eye hospital and some of the women and children initiatives established by NIIT. When we were in India working with the World Bank Institute, NGOs, the National Institutes of Technology, we saw a lot of smaller pilot projects. Many corporations and governments at local, state and national level were trying to find new ICT approaches to old development issues, particularly in education and it wasn¹t going that well. When we started to ask villagers how the projects were going from their point of view, and created more buy-in, things started moving.

Also, coming from the Silicon Valley perspective, failure is OK, it's something we can learn from. We want to learn from the mistakes of existing projects. We want to bring an entrepreneurial process, much like that of Silicon Valley, to developing countries.

RK: What sets the RiOS Institute apart from other NGOs in the ICT for Development field?

PB: Everyone's doing what they can to affect change. In our small way, we bring an interesting mix to the table - scholarship (long-term, 5-year research and ethnography) combined with my design and research and development work. Putting the R&D (research and design) with ethnography has created an important focus on the end-users of technology, who are the people projects are supposed to serve. However, rather than being at the center, they are often secondary to technological innovation, market development efforts or development planning. RiOS refocuses projects and thereby helps assure that they make a real difference and are sustainable in the long term. We then translate this knowledge for decision makers to help them make more informed decisions about what really works. Not only that, but being in the Bay Area, connecting to Stanford University, UC Berkeley and other partners in the ICTD area - that puts us in a good position to be unique. To this we add our work with the United Nations and the World Bank Institute, which creates conversations that do not usually happen but are necessary. The Summit reflects this range of our capacity.

RK: In your opinion, which factor is holding back technology development in low-income markets?

PB: For business, there's a lack of supportive policy and a supporting business environment that's conducive to investment. Before you start talking about knowledge for society and the MDGs, you need the right frameworks - as Kofi Annan has said, without business involvement you can't do it, so for business to be involved, you have to create the enabling environment.

Once we have a clear agenda between the public and private sectors, then things can really start to move ahead and achieve targets. The truth is that our system actually works quite well despite the flaws that are often apparent. In developing countries, it really just doesn't work a lot of the time.

On the other hand, simply regarding societies as markets, and people as consumers, does not work. This view, which is widespread in the BOP movement and among corporations in the ICTD area, neglects many of people's other needs that cannot be converted in financial value but contribute to the success of technology development.

RK: Tell me more about Participatory Rural Appraisal

PB: From our experience, these appraisals are often not working because they employ a form of rapid ethnography that cannot grasp the social, cultural and political complexities of a particular place. It is these complexities that often contribute to the success and failure of a project. What we are doing in our workshops, based on the human-driven design and research methodology we have developed, is to give people working in ICTD better tools to understand their unexamined assumptions as a starting point for possible collaborations that work for all parties involved because they are based on mutual understanding and clarity about needs and objectives.

RK: You've recruited a slew of futurists for the Summit - John Seely Brown, Paul Saffo, James Fruchterman - how do you plan to disseminate the outcomes of the summit, including their scenarios?

PB: The Summit is a call to action and is structured in an interactive way such that participants can get involved to the fullest extent possible. The aim is to develop the beginnings of concrete projects and initiatives, also by bringing different people and institutions together. Findings will be disseminated through the usual reports and articles, but we are also thinking about blogs, more visual maps etc. What is achievable by 2050 is the key question the Summit seeks to answer. We want to be a location for the intersection between the corporate, MLO, NGO, and academic worlds, as well as an inter-generational meeting space. These are not just dreamers; they understand the limits of technology and the fact that ICT alone is not enough. We want to balance the program between the concrete and the abstract, between those who challenge assumptions and those who seek to realign and energize the work. Nobel Peace Prize, Bill Gates will be talking and receiving an award recognizing his contribution at the

Dear Mr Paul Braund greetings !!
Its indeed my pleasure reading your interview. However I have something to share your experiance and know if you are working in this 'so called ' and ' so far' grey area.

I am refering to the ' Barrier free environment' for the benefit of people with disabilities. Why is that even after so many years of experiance and working many a architechs tend to ignore the fact that giving minimum coviniant fecilities would be great help to those people with disabilities. Arent't they too are consumers/ customers and don't they contribute to the overall growth of the nation.
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Jim Brown: NFL, union need to do more | View Clip
09/17/2010
ESPN.com

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Jim Brown isn't surprised by the rise in diagnosed concussions among NFL players and says the league and the union need to do more to protect those players.

Speaking at the Santa Clara Sports Law Symposium on Thursday, the 74-year-old Hall of Famer bemoaned what he says has been the NFL's historical denial of injuries at the cost of winning.

Brown, who will join NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell this weekend at a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus in Washington, also said players have to be better educated about their own health so that they don't attempt to hide the injuries.

Four players suffered concussions this past Sunday during the NFL's opening weekend: Philadelphia quarterback Kevin Kolb and linebacker Stewart Bradley, Carolina quarterback Matt Moore and New York Giants tight end Kevin Boss.

Dr. Hunt Batjer, co-chairman for the NFL's Brain, Head and Neck Medical Committee, said earlier this week he didn't see the concussions suffered by the four players as part of a trend, adding that the league and its medical staff will closely monitor the situation through the season.

Brown, a longtime activist and proponent for change in the health care of current and former NFL players, thinks the concussions are symptoms of a larger issue.

"Concussion have brought the consciousness to the problem but I think the problem is football-related injuries period and the lack of support from the league of those players who have suffered those injuries," Brown said. "The denial factor has been unbelievable. I'm here because I'm a fighter to try to bring attention to this fact."

The symposium covered a variety of topics, from performance enhancing drugs to the licensing and use of players' images. Nearly 150 people attended the event at the cost of $125 per person.

Brown wasn't the keynote speaker but he was easily the most popular and recognizable person at the front table. His message was clear: Professional sports leagues must improve their care and education of the athletes.

Specifically, Brown blasted the NFL for often turning a blind eye to head injuries suffered by players. The league, he says, promotes hard hits but doesn't do enough to deal with the ramifications.

"It doesn't take science to know that when you have head-to-head collisions, there's going to be some effect," Brown said. "Boxing is a great example of it but in football sometimes you're taking greater hits than boxers. When you have one man going full speed against another man and those heads are colliding, it's just the fact of science you're going to have results.

"All the denial that's taken place over the years to keep the league from having to pay money or the players association taking advantage of their players and not representing them properly, all those things have gone on. Only now years later here we are saying concussions. People have been getting knocked out for years and going back in the game unsupervised."

Brown lauded the NHL for its efforts in diagnosing and treating head injuries and said the NFL needs to follow suit.

"People want football and they want hard-hitting football, so to me it's not the thing of hard-hitting football," Brown said. "It's at least taking care of your wounded. I don't want football to not be played but I would like the sophistication brought forth to take care of those who need to be taken care of and to take the precaution, at the sacrifice of winning, to take care of people."

This past June, Brown was presented with the Blanton Collier Award by the Kentucky chapter of the NFLPA to acknowledge his humanitarian work. Brown's Amer-I-Can organization helps gang members from inner cities move toward a more productive life and he is also involved with numerous other charities.

His current passion, however, is forcing change in the NFL on numerous levels. Brown talked about the need to revamp the league's pension plan and health care system, as well as a rookie salary cap.

Historically, Brown says, the NFL has looked the other way when players suffer concussions in order to keep the player on the field despite the increased risk of injury.

Bradley hit his head against a teammate's leg and struggled to get up before falling helmet-first onto the ground in the Eagles' 27-20 loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. He returned for a handful of plays before being pulled for the remainder of the game.

Kolb was hurt shortly after Bradley was, though the Eagles originally reported it as a jaw injury. Like Bradley, Kolb came back in the game briefly before heading to the sidelines.

Part of the problem, Brown says, is the lack of education among athletes.

"Players have to recognize when something is wrong and stand up," Brown said. "That's something that's going to be difficult because players are ostracized when they do that ... so there's a tremendous sacrifice that goes inherently with the game. That's not anybody's fault but the players themselves because we should be able to say, 'Hey, I don't feel good. I can't play.'"

San Francisco Giants managing partner Bill Neukom, Dr. Michael Dillingham, former orthopedic surgeon for the San Francisco 49ers, ex-NFL player Ben Lynch and sociologist Harry Edwards were also among those speaking at the event.

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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Ask Adam: Is Ron Wilson on the firing line? | View Clip
09/17/2010
Hockey News, The

What would your reaction be if an NHL legend stood up today and said the following:

“Concussions have brought the consciousness to the problem, but I think the problem is (sport)-related injuries period and the lack of support from the league of those players who have suffered those injuries…the denial factor has been unbelievable. I'm here because I'm fighting to try to bring attention to this fact.”

Well, that's what NFL icon Jim Brown told a concussion symposium Thursday. And I think virtually all of his comments can be applied to the NHL and its treatment of head injuries. Take this one, for example:

“All the denial that's taken place over the years to keep the league from having to pay money or the players' association taking advantage of their players and not representing them properly, all those things have gone on,” Brown said. “Only now years later here we are saying concussions. People have been getting knocked out for years and going back in the game unsupervised.”

But here's the most important message – directed at those who pull out the “you want to take physicality out of the sport” arguments that always are heard when player safety issues are raised (again, just substitute “hockey” for “football” below”):

“People want football and they want hard-hitting football, so to me it's not the thing of hard-hitting football,” Brown said. “It's at least taking care of your wounded. I don't want football to not be played, but I would like the sophistication brought forth to take care of those who need to be taken care of and to take the precaution, at the sacrifice of winning, to take care of people.”

Amen, Jim. Now let's hit the mailbag. Hard, but with sophistication (I'll wait to continue until you've finished throwing up a little bit in your mouth):

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When good (bad) things happen Religious life in the wake of the investigations | View Clip
09/17/2010
National Catholic Reporter

ESSAY

Anyone who has ministered to people who are suffering has probably encountered the anguished question: Why did God ... give this young mother terminal cancer? allow our child to be kidnapped and killed? inflict this hurricane upon an already earthquake-ravaged country? Conversely, there are those smug or masochistic or sadistic people who are sure they know exactly why God did something: God is punishing those perverts, God is testing my faith, God took your child to teach you detachment, and so on. This attribution of direct causality for mundane happenings to God can be a spontaneous reaction to bewilderment in the face of inexplicable evil and suffering, but it reflects bad theology and encourages worse spirituality. Before looking for traces of God's influence in the present experience of the Vatican investigations of religious congregations and their leadership, it is well to unveil and repudiate any temptation to whitewash that experience under the rubric of “God's will.”

The conviction that God governs the universe by direct miraculous interventions in everything from keeping the rain from ruining our picnic to permitting epidemics that decimate whole populations allows us to believe that “Someone” is in charge and therefore to blame (or to be thanked) for every happening, large or small. It convinces us that we are not really alone in a chance-driven universe. However capricious, cruel, inscrutable or violent we have to believe this “Universe Controller” to be, at least we do not have to face the terror that there is no all-powerful Hand on the cosmic tiller.

But eventually, if we are to mature spiritually, we have to surrender this magical approach to reality, this need for “Someone” who can be held responsible for what we cannot fathom or control, whom we can blame or cower before or bribe or cajole in the face of life's uncertainties. We have to face the fact that germs, atmospheric conditions, the movement of tectonic plates, human malice or stupidity (our own or someone else's), just being in the wrong place at the wrong time, or myriad other factors that we do not even know about and that God is not manipulating by some giant computer in the sky -- in other words, cause and effect in the finite space-time continuum in which we live -- account for “what happens” that is outside our knowledge or control or that is contrary to our will.

God is always present to us, more intimate to us than we are to ourselves, deeply and lovingly concerned about us down to the very hairs on our head (Matthew 10:30). God is supporting us, urging us to the best responses to reality of which we are capable and even beyond what we think we are capable of, consoling us in suffering, sharing and affirming our joy, strengthening us in conflict, and enabling us to learn and grow through everything we experience no matter how tragic or overwhelming it may be. But this does not make God the direct and immediate cause of each event that happens in the universe.

This is what we learn from the crucifixion of Jesus. God did not will the unmitigated evil of the murder of Jesus, much less kill him for our sakes. Jesus' murderers were not God's secret coworkers or disguised instruments of the divine will, and deicide is not the cause of our salvation. But God was with Jesus right through death itself and, by raising Jesus from the dead, set the seal of divine approval on Jesus' free choice to give life to us, even at the cost of his own. This central event of Christian experience, God's drawing the salvation of the world from Jesus' willing acceptance of the absolute evil wreaked upon him by demonically inspired human hatred, is the pattern of what we call the “paschal mystery,” the victorious emergence of life from the very bowels of death. Death does not cause life, but life triumphs even over death because life is of God. In short, bad causes, whether natural disasters or accidents or stupidity or human evil, do not produce good results, but human beings dealing courageously and creatively with natural or moral evil can cause great good to emerge for themselves and others.

Christians down through the ages have shared in this paschal mystery in large and small ways, following in the footsteps of the crucified and risen Jesus. How often we have heard people say, “I'd give anything in the world not to have done what I did ... not to have suffered this loss ... not to have been the victim of ... But I would not have become the person I am today if that tragedy had not entered my life.” Christianity is not a masochistic glorification of victimhood, much less a sadistic divine infliction of suffering “to build character.” It is not the case, for example, that the domestic abuse of this woman was a good thing because it “enabled” her to take charge of her life. She, her courage and determination, God's grace, perhaps the help of others and resources available at the right time and place, not her being abused, are what enabled her to rise out of a hell of evil and choose life. And the lack of those resources might make another woman unable to escape the evil but still able to keep her integrity in the midst of it. And a third might simply succumb to the evil. In no case does faith make evil good. But faith can make suffering meaningful, struggle worthwhile, victory affirming, and even the acceptance of what we cannot surmount life-giving, as they were for Jesus.

Many people, in and outside religious life, are beginning to realize that two Vatican investigations of U.S. women religious and their leaders -- investigations that have caused enormous expenditures of material and human resources, sidetracking of valuable time and energy of congregations and their leaders, distraction from ministry and community life, while generating widespread anxiety, especially among religious living the final days of decades-long lives of fidelity and dedication to God's people -- have nevertheless been the context for some very positive developments. These developments were clearly not intended by the investigations and certainly not caused by them. But God is not limited by human intentions and, like the woman who takes charge of her life in a way she would not have had she been in an even minimally tolerable marriage, religious well beyond the limits of the targeted object of the investigations are taking hold consciously of their Second Vatican Council-inspired identity and mission in a powerful new way. It can be life-giving to pay attention to some of these developments even as we clearly recognize and affirm them as the work of the Spirit strengthening our spirits to endure suffering and grow through it, not the product of human intimidation.

Perhaps the most important development is the impetus, given by the suspicion cast on American religious life by the very launching of the investigations, to articulate much more clearly the theology and spirituality that has developed in and energized the last 40 years of ministerial religious life in this country. Religious during these decades were busy living their way into a new stage in the history of their life and sharing their life with the people to whom they ministered. But the calling into question of the integrity of their personal and communal lives, the fidelity of their commitment to church and religious life, and the efficacy of the renewal they undertook in response to the council's invitation and mandate, has stimulated an overdue effort to speak their truth clearly to themselves and in the assembly of the people of God.

A second development is that this self-articulation has resonated deeply with the actual experience of women religious in and by the U.S. church and this has elicited a spirited expression of appreciation and support of the sisters by many thousands of lay Catholics and some of the clergy. Not only are sisters not seen as lax, unfaithful, in need of investigation of the “quality of their life” and in need of correction (or perhaps even suppression) by a hierarchy that could be better employed examining its own affairs, but they are seen as sources of inspiration and support by millions of Catholics who themselves have been trying to internalize the teaching of Vatican II and to live its spirit in their families, parishes and professional settings. As the laity has sprung to the support of the sisters, the sisters have realized in a new way how intimately connected their life has become to that of their lay sisters and brothers. Both groups have affirmed and rejoiced in their life-giving solidarity, especially in a scandal-ridden church whose institutional integrity is in shambles and whose public agenda is increasingly restorationist.

A third paschal development has been the recognition by religious of the deep unity among themselves, across congregational lines, that has developed in the wake of the council. If there was a time in the past when religious thought of themselves first as members of their own congregations, not only distinct from but even in competition with other congregations, that time is long past. For decades, religious have been ministering together, sharing resources and facilities, looking to each other for support and affirmation when it often was not forthcoming from ecclesiastical authorities. But that solidarity has come to new expression in the past two years as all religious have found themselves together under a cloud of implied censure. The stunning courage of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, already under investigation and therefore with good reason to think first of its own safety, in supporting the effort to pass health care reform legislation for millions of unprotected Americans, was a remarkable expression of cross-congregational solidarity and unified leadership in ministry. At this point religious tend to see themselves first as religious and then as Sisters of St. Joseph or the Immaculate Heart. We now know that there are 60,000 of us, and that is a formidable cohort for speaking truth to power and promoting justice for the voiceless.

An amazing development that can only be the work of the Spirit has been the emergence into voice of religious throughout the world -- especially in the two-thirds world -- expressing their support for and solidarity with their U.S. sisters under siege. The statements of support from the International Union of Superiors General and from the religious of Asia and Oceania, as well as from other groups of religious who have all risked “guilt by association” for their loyalty to their American sisters, have been humbling and exhilarating for U.S. religious, perhaps used to a leadership role among religious but less to being the beneficiaries of the support and care of religious from other parts of the world. As I have traveled nationally and internationally over the past two years I have been surprised -- and yet not surprised -- at the concern for, the solidarity with, the support of religious all over the world in regard to American religious. We are not merely 60,000 strong but many times that. And the vast majority of us are very much on the same page in our response to the challenges of the council to be a new church in and for and with the world that God so loves.

There are other developments emerging, not as clear or unambiguous, but worth watching. Have we been underestimating the immense vitality of that cohort of vigorous women who are being studied increasingly by sociologists as the subjects of a new developmental life stage that has enormous potential for world culture, the so-called “third-agers”? These people, who will soon be the largest and fastest-growing age cohort in the world, are healthy, active and engaged people who are between 65 and 90, which is precisely where the bulk of women religious are today.

Are we taking time to interact with younger women who, as they were growing up, may not have known personally any sisters and perhaps thought of them as timid and domesticated “good little nuns” or “father's little helpers” but who now are hearing and reading about educated and powerful women religious committed to a Vatican II church and a redeemed world? Are we inviting them to think about women living community as equal adults, who are deeply Catholic but not institutional functionaries, who are fully involved in both the single-hearted quest for God and full-time commitment to the development of a new world of peace and justice, and who are not owned by, nor cowed by, nor beholden to male power? Do we have something to offer to our younger sisters that we have not articulated with sufficient clarity but that we are responsible to pass on to new generations?

Adversity often calls out of people conviction, strength and commitment that they were not conscious of possessing. That does not make adversity, especially gratuitous adversity caused by human beings, a blessing, even a “blessing in disguise.” It may well take considerable time, even after these investigations are a vague and distant memory, to fully realize what we have learned from this experience. At the very least it should make us newly aware that the gift of religious life is indeed, as the council called it, a gift -- to the church itself, to those called to it, to those to whom religious minister -- and that such a gift should not be taken for granted.

[Sandra M. Schneiders, a member of Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary of Monroe, Mich., is a professor of New Testament Studies and Christian Spirituality at the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley, Calif.]

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LEADERS GATHER, TRY 'TO MAKE SILICON VALLEY A BETTER PLACE'
09/17/2010
San Jose Mercury News

Silicon Valley's economic health and quality of life may be faring slightly better than California's as a whole. But a panel of government, business and nonprofit leaders Thursday complained public policies are leaving both valley and state behind their competitors.

The litany of concerns at the Silicon Valley Leadership Group's 14th annual Projections conference included the state's woeful education system, which some business leaders say doesn't prepare students well enough for the workforce.

Participants also worried about a November ballot measure that threatens to suspend California's landmark global warming law and could severely impact the valley's cleantech industry. And they targeted onerous sales taxes on manufacturing equipment that have legions of businesses -- tech companies in particular -- fuming.

Co-sponsored by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the half-day session drew about 300 attendees to Santa Clara University, where they listened to top CEOs, two Bay Area mayors and others highlight areas that need attention.

"We're here today to make Silicon Valley a better place," Carl Guardino, the leadership group's president and CEO, told the audience.

The discussion focused on how to reform government and taxes and boost competitiveness. Job recovery, workforce preparation and environmental and regional planning rounded out the list of subjects.

Among the panelists was San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed, whom fellow panelist Brocade Communications CEO Mike Klayko lauded for keeping the storage networking company in San Jose despite generous offers to set up elsewhere.

Last week, Brocade christened its new $278 million corporate headquarters on N. First Street, near Highway 237.

"You owe him a lot," Klayko told the audience, adding that the city moved quickly to process building and other permits. The city's redevelopment agency also gave the company at least $2.5 million for capital equipment, with a promise to invest another $1.5 million in the future.

Reed told the audience that he wished California would someday rank first among the U.S. states as the best place for companies to do business, instead of the reality "We are 51st," he quipped. "Dead last."

If he could wave a magic wand, Reed said, the state would stop taxing businesses on their manufacturing equipment, and the federal government would create a tax policy to support U.S. exports and job creation.

The mayor also said he will vote against Prop. 24, a Nov. 2 ballot measure that would roll back tax breaks for businesses -- something Reed and others say could cost the state hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Locally, the mayor is pushing to pass two measures, W and V, to reform public employee pensions and limit how much outside arbitrators can award in contract disputes with city unions. Reed said both would help San Jose "get control over costs."

Meanwhile, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom focused on a different agenda the threat that voters will suspend the state's global warming law, known as AB 32. Proposition 23 on the November ballot would freeze the law's provisions until California's unemployment rate drops to 5.5 percent or below for four consecutive quarters.

"AB 32 has been a godsend ... it's absolutely essential," Newsom said about the law, which requires greenhouse gas emissions statewide be cut to 1990 levels by 2020. "In San Francisco, our highest growth in terms of economic and job creation is cleantech."

The Democratic mayor, who is running for lieutenant governor against incumbent Republican Abel Maldonado, railed against Tesoro and Valero, two out-of-state oil companies that are largely funding Prop. 23.

"If they roll this back," he said, "those (cleantech) companies will leave Silicon Valley."

Contact Tracy Seipel at 408-275-0140.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Bush still won't admit guilt at Southern Cal | View Clip
09/17/2010
Winston-Salem Journal

SAINTS: Reggie Bush said yesterday that his decision to relinquish his Heisman Trophy should not be seen as an admission that he and his family improperly accepted cash and gifts from sports agents while he played for Southern Cal.

“It's definitely not an admission of guilt. It's me showing respect to the Heisman Trophy itself and to the people who came before me and the people coming after,” Bush said after practice with New Orleans.

BROWNS: Jim Brown, still angry over what he perceives as a slight from Cleveland president Mike Holmgren, plans to skip this weekend's ring of honor ceremony.

Brown was a guest speaker at yesterday's Santa Clara Sports Law Symposium and said he will join NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell this weekend at a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus in Washington rather that fly to Ohio to take part in the ceremony honoring the Browns' 16 Hall of Fame members.

COWBOYS: Dallas fullback Deon Anderson will miss 2 to 4 weeks after left knee surgery. Anderson underwent the procedure yesterday to repair a torn meniscus. While Dallas has another fullback in rookie Chris Gronkowski, Coach Wade Phillips said they may add another fullback or tight end.

Also yesterday, linebacker DeMarcus Ware returned to practice on a limited basis as he recovers from a slight concussion. He's expected to participate fully on Friday. Offensive linemen Marc Colombo and Kyle Kosier made it through the whole workout and are expected to start Sunday against Chicago.

JAGUARS: Jacksonville has signed tight end Ernest Wilford and waived first-year wide receiver John Matthews. Wilford signed a one-year deal worth the veteran minimum yesterday, reuniting him with the team he spent five seasons with.

BUCCANEERS: The NFL is looking into whether Tampa Bay cornerback Aqib Talib violated a one-game suspension by attending the Buccaneers' season opener against Cleveland as a spectator.

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HE TEACHES ADVERTISING AND COMMUNICATION AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY.
09/16/2010
ABC 7 News at 11 PM - KGO-TV

Meg Whitman's nose keeps growing. Whitman says California lost jobs under Jerry Brown. Turns out 1.9 million jobs were created. She spent millions saying Jerry Brown raised taxes. Fact is Brown cut 4 billion in taxes. But Whitman's nose keeps growing by the millions. CLOSED CAPTIONING BROUGHT TO YOU BY MANCINI SLEEPWORLD. 72. WE SHOW YOU SOME OF THE NEW AD QUICKLY DONE VIRAL ON THE INTERNET. LINKS McDONALD'S TO HEART ATTACK AND DEATH. AND USES IMAGE NOT WORDS. IT IS CERTAINLY PROVOCATIVE BUT WILL IT CHANGE EATING BEHAVIOR? HERE'S DAVID. IT IS AN AD THAT CON HAVE I IT IS AN AD THAT CON HAVE IS A MESSAGE. CLUTCHING AN HALF EATEN BIGGER. MESSAGE FROM THE NON-PROFIT PHYSICIAN COMMITTEE FOR RESPONSIBLE MEDICINE. McDONALD'S MENU IS FAT AND CHOLESTEROL AND FULL OF SODIUM AND THOSE KIND OF FOOD CHOICES INCREASE THE RISK OF HEART DISEASE AND STROKE AND OTHER HEALTH PROBLEMS. Reporter AT THEEN THE GOLDEN ARCH APPEAR MAKING IT MOSTLY CLEAR WHO IS BEING CRITICIZED. McDONALD'S ISSUED THIS REACTION. THIS COMMERCIAL IS OUTRAGEOUS. MISLEADING. UNFIR TO ALL CONSUMER. McDONALD'S TRUST OUR CUSTOMERS TO PUT SUCH PRP BEGAN TODAY IN PERSPECTIVE AND MAKE FOOD LIFESTYLE CHOICES RIGHT FOR THEM. WE SHOWED ADD TO CONSUMER AND THEY HAVE MIXED RACK. THIS IMAGE CONVEY A LOT. I DIDN'T THINK SO REALLY. I HAVE SEEN THINGS ON THE INTERNET MORE CONVINCING WITH MORE FACTS THAT WOULD SWAY ME MORE THAN THAT WOULD. Reporter THE AD WILL AIR SOON IN OTHER CITIES. IT WAS MADE AT COST OF 20,000 DOLLARS. ALSO GETTING THOUSANDS OF HITS ON YOU TUBE. L TL KIT IS A CONSUMER PSYCHOLOGIST AT GOLDEN GATE UNIVERSITY. WE TALKED TO HER BY 69. AVERAGE CONSUMER TODAY LEARNS IF WITH IMAGE AND VISUAL AND THAT'S WHAT THIS SPOT IS ALL ABOUT. Reporter BEAUFORD BAR DISAGREES. HE TEACHES ADVERTISING AND COMMUNICATION AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. I THINK THE PEOPLE ARE GOING TO GO AHEAD AND ENJOY McDONALD'S AS THEY ALWAYS HAVE BECAUSE THEY HAVEN'T MADE A REAL CASE YET. IT'S TOTALLY EMOTIONAL ONE. SHOCK VALUE AND I DON'T THINK IT IS GOING TO BE VERY EFFECTIVE. Reporter WHALE THE AD END WITH A SUGGESTION TO EAT VEGETARIAN THEY SAY THEY WOULD BE VERY HAPPY IF AMERICANS WOULD EAT FEWER FAST FAD MEALS. IN SAN JOSE, THE ABC 7 NEWS.

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This Catholic Life: Making a life in the law still leaves time for Church, family, volunteering | View Clip
09/16/2010
Catholic San Francisco

Pete Murphy says he lives life with “the glass half full.” The optimistic San Francisco attorney loves being Catholic and “wouldn't have it any other way.”

Pete and his wife, Joanne, married 44 years July 17, met at a Catholic Alumni Club gathering for single Catholic college graduates at Lake Tahoe, Pete said, telling the story with his ever present smile and accompanying laugh.

“The club had its national convention in Squaw Valley in 1964 where Joanne and I met and I just knew,” Pete said, adding that he is very glad Joanne said ‘yes.' “I married an absolutely great woman who is a great wife, companion and mother.”

“We're very lucky,” Murphy said. “Our three boys – Martin, John and Patrick - and their families live close and we happily get to be doting grandparents.” The youngsters they get to spoil are Martin and his wife, Marie's, daughters, Milan and Sierra; John and his wife, Adrienne's, daughter, Olivia; and Patrick and his wife, Jenny's, son, Luke.

Martin D. Murphy, Pete is a nickname given him by his now-late parents from his love of his stuffed animal Peter Rabbit, grew up in San Francisco's Marina District and is a graduate of Notre Dame des Victoires Elementary School and St. Ignatius College Preparatory. His mom, Anna, was a longtime teacher at San Francisco's Galileo High School and his dad, Martin, also an attorney, retired as president of Transamerica Title.

“We'd see people everywhere in the Marina and they'd know my mom from school,” Pete recalled. “It was always ‘Hey, Mrs. Murphy' and ‘Good afternoon, Mrs. Murphy.' People knew and respected my folks.”

Pete completed undergraduate work at Santa Clara University and later served two years as a lieutenant in the Army. He graduated from University of San Francisco Law School in 1961 and joined San Francisco's Tobin and Tobin law firm in 1962. He has been a partner there since 1970 and senior partner since 1985. Pete's law specialty is non-profit organizations, wills and estates. Among his firm's clients are the Archdiocese of San Francisco, Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Holy Family Sisters, and Hanna Boys Center. Pete is a daily communicant, a “good habit” he started 29 years ago. “When I turned 45 I took to heart the Vatican II words that Mass was the highest form of worship and I thought ‘Why not get in on that?'”

Pete said starting the day with Mass helps put perspective to his daily life. “I don't take life all that seriously,” he admitted, this time minus the laugh and smile, “and I've been very lucky. I had wonderful parents who provided me with a wonderful growing up and Catholic education.”

The rosary is also a prayer Pete tries to get to everyday and he enjoys spiritual reading with his favorite selections coming from C.S. Lewis, Frank Sheed and Peter Kreeft.

Pete and Joanne have been members of St. Brendan Parish for 41 years. “It is truly a top rate parish,” Pete said, noting he's happy with the appointment of new pastor, Father Dan Nascimento. “He listens, has a presence all around the parish and appreciates the help and advice he gets. He's a good man.”

Pete and Joanne both are very active as Catholic volunteers. Pete currently chairs the St. Brendan Parish capital campaign and sits on the Board of Counselors at USF Law School. Joanne is a longtime St. Brendan and St. Vincent de Paul Society volunteer and also assists with organizations including the Little Sisters of the Poor and Little Children's Auxiliary of Catholic Charities CYO. “I like people,” Pete said. “I'm what they call an extrovert, I think. I'm comfortable with people and get energized when I'm with them.”

The Catholic Church also energizes Pete and he considers himself lucky to be a lifelong member. “The Mass and Eucharist are the Church,” he said. “I think Archbishop (George) Niederauer is a real man of the people. He's not aloof and is a real good guy, a decent guy. He just has it, I think. In addition, I really do think we have good priests here.”

The Church is always strong in the sacraments, Pete said. “Sometimes in its human capacity the Church is weak but in its sacred capacity it is always solid.”

“I'm a happy, husband, father and grandfather,” Pete said.

Pete is a forever fan of daily Mass and recommends that anyone not already in the habit think about getting it on their schedule. “Consider attending one weekday Mass in addition to Sunday Mass,” Pete said. “Develop the habit of attending some weekday Masses. Most are but a half-hour long. If the sacraments, especially Eucharist, are not a part of your life make them a part of your life.”

From October 16, 2009 issue of Catholic San Francisco.

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Windows into a complex community | View Clip
09/16/2010
National Catholic Reporter Online

BERKELEY, CALIF. -- Oscar would use only his first name. He's undocumented, from Mexico, and even though he's lived in the United States for 17 years, his life is a state of constant insecurity. No papers. He's got to be careful.

He has command of English and a lot of ambition but his prospects remain limited. Without papers he can't continue his education, and he can't get a good job.

No one was certain how many others among the 31 attending a two-week Hispanic Institute here in June find themselves in a similar circumstance. For Oscar, who laments that this is his third and final year -- students graduate after the third year -- the institute is a place “where we don't feel like second-class citizens.” He feels like that at times even in his Northern California parish, yet it's also one of the few places where he doesn't have to worry about immigration status.

Oscar's story represents but a tiny window into the complexity of what is, for the sake of convenience, brought together under the heading “Hispanic ministry.” The course at the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University is one of the church efforts to form Hispanic or Latino leadership.

The terms themselves give witness to the complexity. Jesuit Fr. Eduardo Fernández, associate professor of pastoral theology and ministry at the school of theology, also teaches at the institute. He explained in an interview that “the East Coast tends to use Hispanic. On the West Coast, we tend to use Latino.” That leads to a more textured explanation of the differences, for instance, in perceptions among Cubans (with a strong link to Spain, more likely to identify as Hispanic) and Mexicans (more oriented toward Latin America and thus, he said, more inclined to identify themselves as Latino). Some scholars simply note that they use the terms interchangeably.

Jesuit Fr. Eduardo Fernández, left, teaches at the Hispanic Institute. (Courtesy of Santa Clara University)A minor semantic point, perhaps, but it is an indicator that a term like “Hispanic ministry” is extreme shorthand for a rich universe of cultural and religious expression that can appear overwhelming in its diversity and dimensions.

The numbers -- and their implications -- are daunting. About a third of the 65.6 million Catholics in the United States are now Latinos, according to a 2007 study done by the Pew Hispanic Center and the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. And that percentage continues to grow, not only because of immigration but also because of the new generations of those who have been U.S. citizens for a long time. The study concluded, “Hispanics are transforming the nation's religious landscape, especially the Catholic church, not only because of their growing numbers but also because they are practicing a distinctive form of Christianity.”

Numbers alone, however, don't guarantee an effect on Catholicism. As University of Notre Dame theology professor Timothy Matovina points out in an essay, “Latinos in U.S. Catholicism,” thousands of U.S. Hispanics defect each year from Catholicism, and younger Latinos do not demonstrate the same fervor as their parents. “According to Carmen Cervantes, cofounder and executive director of the Latino youth ministry organization Instituto Fe y Vida,” he writes, “‘Latino/a teens will soon be more than half of all adolescent Catholics in the U.S., and as a group they are even more religiously inarticulate and disengaged than other Catholic teens.”

Different evangelizing styles

Not only do Hispanics face cultural differences among themselves, but there is an overriding clash with Anglo culture as well as the layered fear of deportation.

All of those elements seemed to mix in an air of practicality that hung over the class on the final day of instruction at the Hispanic Institute. Not long into a lecture that began with some basic ecclesiology, the discussion turned to the difference among approaches to evangelism that might be encountered in today's culture.

Dr. Cecilia González-Andrieu of Loyola-Marymount University in Los Angeles moved quickly from the concept of mystical union to sacraments and the Catholic understanding that one “can't keep God in a box.” At the same time, evangelization can't be imposed or triumphal, she said.

Nor is evangelization a quick fix, a simple declaration of belief. That's why, for instance, the RCIA program of preparation for adults is more than an altar call or the thrill of quick conversion one might find outside of the Catholic experience. It involves months of a systematic investigation of faith that culminates in baptism and a visible initiation into the larger community.

Sacraments, she explained, make Christ visible in the wider world. The Eucharist, she said, “is a visible sign of the reign of God in mission.” All of this Catholic activity, she pointed out, ends up in a very outward mission to the world.

González-Andrieu is a systematic theologian specializing in theological aesthetics, a discipline that gleans its information from “the theologies that are not in the canonical text” but that are equally important to those who, in different ways, express them. In an interview, she said she believes theological aesthetics is particularly important in the 21st century “for those of us who especially want to give a place at the theological table to women and people of color and people on the margins.” For answers to her questions, then, she looks to such things as cultural and pietistic practices. What does it mean that a group maintains an altar for the Day of the Dead? “What is the vision of redemption?” What is the vision of the communion of saints? What is being said in the little hangings that people put on saints?”

The presumption is not that these are “just illustrations of existing theologies that somehow the European theologians have already said” -- or, more likely, she added, theologies they've missed.

“What have women been saying for centuries in ways when they were not allowed to write or teach or any of those things? What were they saying, and what are communities saying?” she asked.

If the Latino/Hispanic experience is so varied, then, is it reasonable to speak of it in a single phrase? Can it be spoken of as a single Hispanic community, and, if so, what binds these disparate expressions of culture and religion together?

One clear similarity is language, said Fernández, whose book Mexican-American Catholics is part of a Paulist series on pastoral spirituality. In addition, he said, the experience of conquest by Spain and its consequences bridges cultures in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Another shared experience, said González-Andrieu, is that “of being other ... that's part of our common language with one another, we are other, we are on the margins.”

A ‘second mixing'

Across cultures, the Hispanic community in the United States also shares poverty, the inability to get an education, “or we share the painfulness of trying to come and join our families, whether we're coming across the strait from Cuba on a boat or across a desert. ... Really the thing that we most share in the United States is the second mixing with another culture.”

That mixing today spreads well beyond the Southwest and California and it includes other national groupings. Storm Lake, in northwestern Iowa, isn't normally a flash point in the national immigration debate, but Francisco Villegas, one of six participants sent to the institute by the diocese of Sioux City, Iowa, is a lector at St. Mary Parish in that diocese.

Villegas, a self-employed construction worker and a U.S. citizen, said meat-packing plants in the region have drawn a large labor force from Mexico and from South Africa, with whom local authorities have an arrangement to take a certain number of immigrants. He said there is some tension in the area between the two groups, Hispanic and African, but the parish school has played a significant role in improving relationships between those two groups and with the Anglo community.

If Oscar sometimes feels like a second-class citizen in his parish, Villegas' experience in Iowa has been different. His pastor is Anglo but lived in Mexico for a long time and “accommodates both communities,” speaking in English or Spanish as needed, he said.

What Villegas has seen is that more and more Anglos are joining in Hispanic forms of worship, coming to Guadalupe celebrations. At the same time, Hispanics have had to alter their celebrations at times, taking their dancing and mariachi bands inside because much of the year in Iowa it is too cold to hold festivities outside.

Rosie Canas, whose family originated in Mexico, was born and raised in Indio, Calif., and she's seen her current parish, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, in Southern California go from majority Anglo to majority Hispanic. According to the parish Web site, on weekends there are five Spanish-language Masses and three in English.

She said the parish engages in a lot of political organizing on behalf of immigrants and that because of its location it often is a first point of refuge for new arrivals.

Canas graduated from the institute this year and said she thinks the course has given her tools that will allow her, as a second-generation Mexican American, to give back to her community and to help develop new leaders in the parish.

That would be a perfect conclusion to the process for Paulina Espinosa, who's been directing the 22-year-old program for the past seven years. She said it is essential “to develop leaders in the local parishes who are comfortable enough with their faith and their leadership skills to really begin taking leadership roles.” The need, she said, becomes greater each year as the community continues to grow and spread throughout the country.

[Tom Roberts is NCR editor at large. His e-mail address is troberts@ncronline.org.]

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/16/2010
Republic - Online, The

San Jose (28)

Simone Cox takes a breather in her office at Ariba Network in Sunnyvale, California, before heading off to lunch on August 31, 2010. Cox, a 54-year-old, single woman, was laid off in early 2009 from Motorola, where she worked as a technical writer. She finally found job in September 2009 at Ariba Network, but has seen her home value drop and...

SAN JOSE, Calif. — In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your — ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market — or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

———

(c) 2010, San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.).

Visit MercuryNews.com, the World Wide Web site of the Mercury News, at http://www.mercurynews.com.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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Brown: More needs to be done by NFL | View Clip
09/16/2010
San Francisco Chronicle

Jim Brown isn't surprised by the rise in diagnosed concussions among NFL players and says the league and the union need to do more to protect those players.

Speaking at the Santa Clara Sports Law Symposium on Thursday, the 74-year-old Hall of Famer bemoaned what he says has been the NFL's historical denial of injuries at the cost of winning.

Brown, who will join NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell this weekend at a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus in Washington, also said players have to be better educated about their own health so that they don't attempt to hide the injuries.

Four players suffered concussions this past Sunday during the NFL's opening weekend: Philadelphia quarterback Kevin Kolb and linebacker Stewart Bradley, Carolina quarterback Matt Moore and New York Giants tight end Kevin Boss.

Dr. Hunt Batjer, co-chairman for the NFL's Brain, Head and Neck Medical Committee, said earlier this week he didn't see the concussions suffered by the four players as part of a trend, adding that the league and its medical staff will closely monitor the situation through the season.

Brown, a longtime activist and proponent for change in the health care of current and former NFL players, thinks the concussions are symptoms of a larger issue

"Concussion have brought the consciousness to the problem but I think the problem is football-related injuries period and the lack of support from the league of those players who have suffered those injuries," Brown said. "The denial factor has been unbelievable. I'm here because I'm a fighter to try to bring attention to this fact."

The symposium covered a variety of topics, from performance enhancing drugs to the licensing and use of players' images. Nearly 150 people attended the event at the cost of $125 per person.

Brown wasn't the keynote speaker but he was easily the most popular and recognizable person at the front table. His message was clear: Professional sports leagues must improve their care and education of the athletes.

Specifically, Brown blasted the NFL for often turning a blind eye to head injuries suffered by players. The league, he says, promotes hard hits but doesn't do enough to deal with the ramifications.

"It doesn't take science to know that when you have head-to-head collisions, there's going to be some effect," Brown said. "Boxing is a great example of it but in football sometimes you're taking greater hits than boxers. When you have one man going full speed against another man and those heads are colliding, it's just the fact of science you're going to have results.

"All the denial that's taken place over the years to keep the league from having to pay money or the players association taking advantage of their players and not representing them properly, all those things have gone on. Only now years later here we are saying concussions. People have been getting knocked out for years and going back in the game unsupervised."

Brown lauded the NHL for its efforts in diagnosing and treating head injuries and said the NFL needs to follow suit.

"People want football and they want hard-hitting football, so to me it's not the thing of hard-hitting football," Brown said. "It's at least taking care of your wounded. I don't want football to not be played but I would like the sophistication brought forth to take care of those who need to be taken care of and to take the precaution, at the sacrifice of winning, to take care of people."

This past June, Brown was presented with the Blanton Collier Award by the Kentucky chapter of the NFLPLA to acknowledge his humanitarian work. Brown's Amer-I-Can organization helps gang members from inner cities move toward a more productive life and he is also involved with numerous other charities.

His current passion, however, is forcing change in the NFL on numerous levels. Brown talked about the need to revamp the league's pension plan and health care system, as well as a rookie salary cap.

Historically, Brown says, the NFL has looked the other way when players suffer concussions in order to keep the player on the field despite the increased risk of injury.

Bradley hit his head against a teammate's leg and struggled to get up before falling helmet-first onto the ground in the Eagles' 27-20 loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. He returned for a handful of plays before being pulled for the remainder of the game.

Kolb was hurt shortly after Bradley was, though the Eagles originally reported it as a jaw injury. Like Bradley, Kolb came back in the game briefly before heading to the sidelines.

Part of the problem, Brown says, is the lack of education among athletes.

"Players have to recognize when something is wrong and stand up," Brown said. "That's something that's going to be difficult because players are ostracized when they do that ... so there's a tremendous sacrifice that goes inherently with the game. That's not anybody's fault but the players themselves because we should be able to say, 'Hey, I don't feel good. I can't play.'"

San Francisco Giants managing partner Bill Neukom, Dr. Michael Dillingham, former orthopedic surgeon for the San Francisco 49ers, ex-NFL player Ben Lynch and sociologist Harry Edwards were also among those speaking at the event.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/09/16/sports/s140754D42.DTL#ixzz10CNRBLtP

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Autism and the iPad : Laura Shumaker : City Brights | View Clip
09/16/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

apple

Since my last article about selecting iPad apps for children with autism, many have asked for recommendations for apps for teens and young adults with autism. I did some research with Matthew's help and with the help of my facebook autism forum. Here are six suggestions to get you started:

1) "Check out MyTalk app which works as an AAC(alternative augmentative communications) device on the iProducts. The boards are very easy to build and can be customized with each users preferences, photos, icons for favorite restaurants (meals), etc. Free download for Mobile lite version at www.mytalktools.com. The complete version is about $39 and is the cheapest and easiest to use app for communication out there. It was designed by the father of a special needs child because he was frustrated with the other AAC devices that were big, hard to program and always broken. His son Michael refused to use them. He loves the MyTalk app...most people who give it a shot love it too."

(I know, I know, that was probably a plug from the developer, but what the heck.)

Apple

3) "Apps that help with organization, like google calendar and task manager. Many of my clients use them as well to keep track of homework assignments, chores etc. They're wonderful ways to compensate for off task tendencies and a desire to be in greater control of one's schedule."

5) "My son with Asperger's loves research. He has the DogShow app which is an encyclopedia of dog breeds and an Army survival guide. Discovery Channel also has a good one that shows programming and information. For me the first aid app is great because you can put all their meds and diagnosis and have with you at all times."

Erin Siegel, parent

6) "My son enjoys heavy metal music. He especially enjoys the guitar hero and rock band apps."

Karrie Hockenberry, parent

It seems to me that the best way to select iPad apps for your child, teen or young adult with autism is to consider their interests and preview as many apps as you can (yes, their are PLENTY of them).

WARNING! GIVE STRUCTURE TO THE APP REVIEW SESSION!

RULE # 1: Don't just go buy and iPad and bring it home. Take your family member with autism to the Apple store and let them fiddle with it first to make sure it is right for them. (After rule 2 and 3, I have decided that the iPad is not right for Matthew--yet.)

RULE # 2: When going over them with your child/teen/adult, put a time limit on each app so that they do not get stuck (the way Matthew did with the YOUTUBE APP and the LABYRINTH APP.)

RULE # 3: Pick THREE apps in THREE different categories of interest. It's best to move from one to the next to prevent FRUSTRATION.

More later--what are your teen/young adults favorite apps?

THE MORGAN AUTISM CENTER CONFERENCE

Co-hosted by Santa Clara University and Children's Health Council

WHEN:

Saturday, September 25th, 2010

WHERE:

Santa Clara University

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Yahoo! 'handicaps' its search ad auctions | View Clip
09/16/2010
The Register

Exclusive Search ad systems such as Google's AdWords and Yahoo! Search Marketing are billed as auctions. But the line between auction and non-auction is more blurred than the average netizen might think. According to  [1], Preston McAfee, the company is "handicapping" its auctions using an algorithmic method it calls squashing. And it had been doing so since 2007. "When someone has a really high ad click probability, they're very hard to beat, so it's not a really competitive auction," McAfee told The Reg. "So that they don't just win [every auction], we do squashing. This makes the auction more competitive.

"It's like handicapping. We handicap the people with the high click probability."

This, McAfee said, can increase Yahoo!'s revenues. "The bidders respond by bidding higher. The one who was destined to lose is now back in the race, so they bid higher trying to displace the number one, and the number one is trying to fend them off so they bid higher too.

"We can make the competition a bit more fierce using squashing, even on keywords where there's not much bidding."

Like Google AdWords, Yahoo! Search Marketing uses a "second price auction." You end up paying only if someone clicks on your ad, and the amount you pay is determined by the bid of the advertiser ranked just below you. Prices are driven by bids, but according to McAfee, squashing drives up the bidding.

Yahoo! published a research paper [2] on the practice in 2007. But its blog post discussing the paper does not say whether the technique has actually been deployed. McAfee would not say how much squashing the company does, but this is constantly changing. "Not only are we engaged in squashing but we are currently doing a squashing refresh, resetting the parameters," he said.

On Thursday afternoon, at a press event at Yahoo!'s headquarters in Sunnyvale, California, company CTO and former chief search architect Raymie Stata told us said that the practice must be balanced against efforts to keep ads relevant and satisfy users. In essence, the degree to which Yahoo! "squashes" can be increased or decreased as the company sees fit.

However much Yahoo! squashes, it won't do so for long. Yahoo! is in the process of moving its search ad setup to Microsoft's AdCenter system, and the move should be completed later this fall. McAfee said he did not know "for sure" if Microsoft uses an algorithm similar to Yahoo!'s squashing setup. We asked Microsoft if it's using such algorithms, but it did not immediately respond.

Nor did Google directly respond to requests to discuss the issue — though it did point us to a video [3] and a help page [4] that describe its ad-bidding system. These indicate it does not do squashing.

When we specifically asked Google if it does something similar to squashing, it did not respond.

If Google does something similar to squashing, it is a potentially thorny issue for Mountain View, which controls an estimated 85 per cent — or more — of the search market. When critics accuse Google of violating antitrust law, one of its chief defenses is that because AdWords is an auction, it doesn't set prices. But if Google is squashing, this would at least call those claims into question.

Last month, Santa Clara University law professor and tech-law blogger Eric Goldman questioned [5] whether Google was undermining the integrity of the auction process by bidding on its own auctions.

The original search-ad auction model — popularized by Overture, which was eventually bought by Yahoo! — ranked ads on the page strictly according to the amount of money an advertiser was willing to bid. But Google found a much more successful business model when it began ranking ads according to click-through rate — how likely an ad was to receive a click. In essence, it ranked ads [6] by multiplying bids by the ad's "quality score", a calculation based on click-through rate.

"[Quality Score] looks at a variety of factors to measure how relevant your keyword is to your ad text and to a user's search query," reads Google's current AdWords help page, adding that it is "broadly determined" by three main factors: click-through rate, relevance, and landing-page quality.

With the introduction of Panama, Yahoo! mimicked the Google model. But it has introduced an added twist with squashing. "The old Overture method said rank by bid... The Google method ranked by bid [multiplied by] click probability," McAfee said. "Let's say you raise click probability to the power of gamma. What makes you the most money is a gamma between 0 and 1. The right thing from a revenue perspective is somewhere between Overture and Google. This is called squashing."

McAfee said that squashing is separate from calculations involving its own version of quality score — though the introduction of things like "relevance" and "landing page quality" can have similar (if limited) effects. "Using relevance scoring may accomplish a certain amount of squashing, but it need not," he explained.

"Squashing is aimed at making marketplaces that are not very competitive a bit more competitive, by handicapping, much the same as a handicap makes a golf tournament more competitive. Relevance scoring is aimed at incorporating the user experience into the evaluation. Yahoo does this as well using quality scoring.

"These two have quite distinct purposes, but their effects can be similar because both quality adjustments and squashing move away from a pure revenue-maximization model. The effects are similar when bidders with unusually high click rates typically have lower quality scores. Otherwise, the effects are different."

In Yahoo!'s blog post discussing Pennock's research paper, the company echoes Raymie Stata, saying that squashing must be used judiciously. "Squashing can significantly improve revenue, at the expense of advertiser and user satisfaction," the post reads. "As a result, it is necessary to set acceptable thresholds for loss of relevance, and then optimize revenue based on those thresholds." Squashing was developed by Yahoo! researcher Dave Pennock and other Yahoo! colleagues.

Asked if he believes Google is doing something similar to squashing, McAfee gave the only answer that anyone outside the Googleplex can give to such a question. "I have no way of knowing one way or another," he said. "It's very hard to know what they actually do." You can bid on an auction, but you never have access to the bids of others. ®

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Craigslist Really Comes Clean: No More "Adult Services" Ever | View Clip
09/16/2010
Time - Online

Many advocates of Web freedom were convinced that Craigslist hadn't really surrendered. They were certain that it only appeared to have thrown in the towel last week in its long-running legal battle over ads that appeared on its pages under the heading "adult services." After all, the company had put up a hard, years-long defense and its first step in its so-called defeat was to set up a banner with the word "CENSORED" before even that was taken down. Surely there had to be another chapter in the contest between one of the most popular sites on the Web and a cadre of some 40 states attorneys general who had loudly demanded that the site remove a category for ads that they say are nothing more than fronts for prostitution?

But it all turned out to be wishful thinking. On Wednesday, William Powell, director of law enforcement relations for Craigslist, told the U.S. House judiciary crime subcommittee that "as of Sept. 3, 2010 Craigslist has terminated its adult services section." He said that such a move, however, would do little to deter the type of ads that it carried from appearing elsewhere on the Internet. "Those who formerly posted adult services ads on Craigslist will now advertise at countless other venues. It is our sincere hope that law enforcement and advocacy groups will find helpful partners there."(See 25 websites you can't live without.)

The turnabout confirms the worst fears of some Internet advocacy groups who had urged Craigslist to stand up to what they called a campaign of intimidation. Other groups had said it was only a matter of time before the litany of criticism — and sometimes threats of prosecution — by law enforcement and rights groups and others wore the company down.

The shuttering of the "adult services" category (which had been called "erotic services" until last year) came shortly after a South Carolina judge threw out the site's lawsuit against the state's Attorney General Henry McMaster. Craigslist had consistently fought attempts to control its content, arguing that federal law provides powerful, and essential, protection against liability for websites whose users post inappropriate content. Last year, it sued in federal court in Charleston, alleging a campaign of intimidation at the hands of McMaster, who had targeted the ads as a front for prostitution. That was its response to McMaster himself raising the ante in the wake of the so-called Craigslist killer case in New York last year, when he told the company and its executives they had 10 days to remove the ads or face investigation and possible prosecution under state law as an accessory to prostitution. On the tenth day, Craigslist filed suit to stop the threats.(Read "Is Wikipedia a Victim of Its Own Success?")

In a phone interview with TIME, McMaster called Craigslist's decision to shutter the ads “a victory for law enforcement.” But web freedom advocates point out that Congress, through what's known as the Communications Decency Act (CDA) of 1996, has made it clear that bad behavior, even illegal acts, on the part of a site's patrons isn't enough to hold the site itself liable for that misconduct. For example, if a Yahoo! customer uses email to send a harassing message, the customer can get sued, or arrested, but not Yahoo!. And if prostitutes want to use Craigslist to meet clients, despite the company's strong warnings that such ads are illegal, then the sex workers and their johns should be targeted, not the site, says Professor Eric Goldman of Santa Clara University law school, and one of the country's top experts on the CDA.

McMaster says he and the other attorneys general had every right to try to shame Craigslist into dropping the ads, no matter what federal law says. "Was it proper? Everyone has the right — you, me, everyone — to take a stand on these ads. They are harmful and I don't know what Craigslist was thinking when they allowed them in the first place. After the murders happened in New York, we asked again, and gave then a deadline to take ads off or they'd be investigated. And if proof was found that they knew an ad was for prostitution and kept it up there, then we'd prosecute them. We still would."

Indeed, McMaster told TIME earlier this week — before Powell's testimony — that he and other law enforcement officials in South Carolina are reading craigslist.org closely. If ads by prostitutes reappear anywhere on the site, local law enforcement will be looking for proof that the company has knowledge of their connection to their sex trade. If they find such proof, Craigslist may find itself back in court in South Carolina, this time facing criminal charges. "The question is whether Craigslist knows the ads are related to prostitution. We said we would prosecute them if an investigation shows they do. And we still would."

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Mexico Independence Bicentennial | View Clip
09/15/2010
Forum - KQED-FM

As Mexico celebrates the bicentennial of its independence and the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Revolution, the city of San Jose and nearby academic and cultural institutions are marking the day with art exhibits, concerts, lectures and a tequila expo. We find out about the art, artifacts and literature of Mexican independence and the revolution. Juan Velasco, associate professor of English at Santa Clara University, was interviewed about the history and literature of the Mexican revolution.

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Two Messages | View Clip
09/15/2010
Remodeling

Greg Antonioli founded Out of the Woods Construction and Cabinetry Inc. in 1992. With more than $3 million in revenues in 2009, Out of the Woods is a design/build firm that does strictly residential remodeling, historically in the Boston suburbs and increasingly in the city. The company has 13 employees (eight in the field, five in the office), practices open-book management, and enjoys a company-wide bonus program. Greg is a long-time member of Remodelers Advantage Roundtables, president of the Eastern Massachusetts NARI chapter, and a Sandler Sales trainee. He is also an avid reader of business books and periodicals, a regular magazine contributor, and (some have said) a twisted thinker. Greg believes that his company's #1 obligation is to its construction clients. He believes that company time and resources spent on sales is time that should be spent serving construction clients, therefore sales and design efforts must be very efficient. One of every three of the prospects with whom Greg meets becomes a design client, and 100% of those design clients convert to construction clients. Greg is a native of California's Silicon Valley area and a graduate of Santa Clara University. He and his wife have three daughters and live in Acton, Mass.

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Autism and the iPad: Choosing apps for teens and adults : Laura Shumaker : City Brights | View Clip
09/15/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

apple

Since my last article about selecting iPad apps for children with autism, many have asked for recommendations for apps for teens and young adults with autism. I did some research with Matthew's help and with the help of my facebook autism forum. Here are six suggestions to get you started:

1) "Check out MyTalk app which works as an AAC(alternative augmentative communications) device on the iProducts. The boards are very easy to build and can be customized with each users preferences, photos, icons for favorite restaurants (meals), etc. Free download for Mobile lite version at www.mytalktools.com. The complete version is about $39 and is the cheapest and easiest to use app for communication out there. It was designed by the father of a special needs child because he was frustrated with the other AAC devices that were big, hard to program and always broken. His son Michael refused to use them. He loves the MyTalk app...most people who give it a shot love it too."

(I know, I know, that was probably a plug from the developer, but what the heck.)

Apple

3) "Apps that help with organization, like google calendar and task manager. Many of my clients use them as well to keep track of homework assignments, chores etc. They're wonderful ways to compensate for off task tendencies and a desire to be in greater control of one's schedule."

5) "My son with Asperger's loves research. He has the DogShow app which is an encyclopedia of dog breeds and an Army survival guide. Discovery Channel also has a good one that shows programming and information. For me the first aid app is great because you can put all their meds and diagnosis and have with you at all times."

Erin Siegel, parent

6) "My son enjoys heavy metal music. He especially enjoys the guitar hero and rock band apps."

Karrie Hockenberry, parent

It seems to me that the best way to select iPad apps for your child, teen or young adult with autism is to consider their interests and preview as many apps as you can (yes, their are PLENTY of them).

WARNING! GIVE STRUCTURE TO THE APP REVIEW SESSION!

RULE # 1: Don't just go buy and iPad and bring it home. Take your family member with autism to the Apple store and let them fiddle with it first to make sure it is right for them. (After rule 2 and 3, I have decided that the iPad is not right for Matthew--yet.)

RULE # 2: When going over them with your child/teen/adult, put a time limit on each app so that they do not get stuck (the way Matthew did with the YOUTUBE APP and the LABYRINTH APP.)

RULE # 3: Pick THREE apps in THREE different categories of interest. It's best to move from one to the next to prevent FRUSTRATION.

More later--what are your teen/young adults favorite apps?

THE MORGAN AUTISM CENTER CONFERENCE

Co-hosted by Santa Clara University and Children's Health Council

WHEN:

Saturday, September 25th, 2010

WHERE:

Santa Clara University

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AUTISM CENTER ADDS IPADS TO STUDENTS' LEARNING TOOLS
09/15/2010
San Jose Mercury News

Apple's iPad has been wowing people for months now, but Jennifer Sullivan, the executive director of the Morgan Autism Center in San Jose, has a great reason to be a fan.

Since the iPad was launched in April, teachers and doctors who work with autistic children and adults have been raving about the device. Apps such as Proloquo2Go and Grace are being praised for their ability to help students with autism and other disabilities build communication skills.

Thanks to a grant from the Escher Family Foundation, the Morgan Autism Center was able to buy iPads for each of its classrooms; they arrived last week.

"We've had the iPads in the classrooms for a few days and clearly they are already having an impact on our ability to expand our presentations and language options," Sullivan wrote on the center's blog (http //morganautismcenter.blogspot.com).

At the center's ninth annual autism conference on Sept. 25 at Santa Clara University, speech and language therapist Danielle Samson will demonstrate how the iPad can be used with students with autism.

Registration for the conference, co-hosted by Santa Clara University and the Children's Health Council, is $125 in advance or $150 at the door. For more information, go to www.morgancenter.org.

LIONS ROARING The Lincoln High School Foundation is kicking off its campaign to raise funds for the San Jose school's programs with a Sunday dinner. The 5 p.m. event takes place at 71 Saint Peter, in San Pedro Square.

The foundation has also started a donor wall. The initial series of engravings will be limited to the first 50 people who donate $500 each. After that, it'll take contributions of $1,000 or more to get a spot on the wall.

Tickets to Sunday's dinner are $100, and Lincoln Lions supporters can get involved by calling 408-535-6300.

VILLAGE TO-DO Big Basin Way will close Sept. 25 and 26 to accommodate the Saratoga Art and Wine Festival. The event features more than 100 artists, wineries and food vendors from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. A free shuttle will run from West Valley College and Saratoga High School.

WALKING SUCCESS The students at Buchser Middle School in Santa Clara raised a lot of money for the school with a walk-a-thon last Friday, taking laps for two hours around the Townsend Field track. Probably more popular was the "teacher jail," in which instructors could be locked up for two minutes for $1. That alone raised $500.

Got a tip? Call Sal Pizarro at 408-627-0940 or e-mail him at spizarro@mercurynews.com.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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WHEN SABERCATS RETURN, ARBET AGAIN WILL BE COACH
09/15/2010
San Jose Mercury News

When the San Jose SaberCats return to the Arena Football League next year, they will do so with their two-time coach of the year.

The team announced Tuesday that Darren Arbet will return for his 11th season as SaberCats coach.

Arbet led the SaberCats to three ArenaBowl championships, four conference titles and seven Western Division titles before the team disbanded when the league took a hiatus after the 2008 season.

When the team announced its return to the league in June, Arbet joined its ownership group.

Colleges

The Western Athletic Conference has filed a lawsuit in an attempt to keep Fresno State and Nevada in the league through the 2011-12 school year before leaving for the Mountain West Conference.

WAC commissioner Karl Benson said league bylaws state that members must inform the conference they are leaving for another league by July 1 or they must stay through the next two school years. Fresno State and Nevada announced they had accepted invitations to the MWC on July 18.

(box) Cal's Pia Halbig shot a three-round, 5-under-par 211 to finish third at the Ptarmigan Ram Fall Classic in Fort Collins, Colo., four strokes behind medalist Kayla Mortellaro of Idaho.

Cal finished second behind Colorado. San Jose State was 11th.

(box) Santa Clara's Miki Ueoka tied for ninth at the Circling Raven Collegiate Invitational in Worley, Idaho, shooting a three-round 9-over 225.

Pro hockey

Left wing Bobby Ryan agreed to a new five-year, $25.5 million contract that keeps him with the Anaheim Ducks through 2014-15. Ryan scored a career-high 61 points last season.

Soccer

Major League Soccer is expanding its schedule from 30 to 34 games next season following the addition of expansion teams in Portland, Ore., and Vancouver, British Columbia.

The season will start March 19 and end Oct. 22.

(box) The New York Red Bulls have acquired midfielder Mehdi Ballouchy, a former Santa Clara University standout, from the Colorado Rapids for forward Macoumba Kandji.

(box) Toronto FC fired coach Preki Radosavljevic and director of soccer Mo Johnston.

Pro basketball

Lauren Jackson scored 26 points as the host Seattle Storm won 87-84 over the Atlanta Dream to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five WNBA finals. Game 3 is Thursday.

(box) The Charlotte Bobcats waived center Erick Dampier, voiding the last year of his seven-year $73 million deal and avoiding the luxury tax.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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"You and I Are To Become Global Citizens" | View Clip
09/14/2010
America: The National Catholic Weekly

Father Gerry Blaszczak, S.J., Chaplain of Fairfield University, addressed the Class of 2014 on September 2, welcoming them to classes and challenging them with the task of becoming global citizens. Blaszczak, in his 43 years as a Jesuit, is a citizen of the world himself. He has taught seminarians in Africa, visited the poor and supported priests in South America, learned philosophy and theology in Germany, and been a pastor, University Vice-President, and Jesuit Superior in New York. A scripture scholar with a doctoral degree from Harvard University, he is known and admired by all his personal and kenotic approach to ministry, as well as for his work in uniting Christians, Muslims, and Jewish persons. Here is his address at the Convocation:

Fairfield intentionally follows a path marked out for us by St. Ignatius Loyola and the early Jesuits more than 500 years ago. They shared the renaissance humanists' conviction that there is an intrinsic link between education and the virtuous life, and that a life of learning and virtue leads both to personal flourishing and outfits a person for public service. Humanistic studies led, they believed, to “pietas,” “upright character,” which was needed if society were to be both prosperous and just. In 2001, in a address at Santa Clara University, Fr. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, then Superior General of the Jesuits, insisted that “the real measure of our Jesuit Universities lies in who our students become: competent, reflective persons, capable of compassion and well educated for solidarity, ready to think on a global level and act on the local level.” Through both the curriculum, and extra-curricular activities, “students should learn to perceive, think, judge, choose and act for the rights of the disadvantaged and oppressed.”

Class of 2014, you should know from the start that yours is no ordinary university. And yours, surely, is no ordinary time. More than ever your communities need you to return to them as visionaries and as leaders, outfitted with the skills required for equitable democracies, societies where prosperity is not limited to the elite, and where the legitimate rights of all persons are respected. Our global society needs you to fulfill your responsibilities as well-informed, empathetic, dynamic artisans of a global society of justice and well-being. Robert F. Kennedy's words in 1966 at Cape Town University speak to this, your moment:

This world demands the qualities of youth; not a time of life but a state of mind, a temper of the will, a quality of imagination, a predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease… Thus you, and your young compatriots everywhere, have had thrust upon you a greater burden of responsibility than any generation that has ever lived.

This idea of active learning is not new; it goes back to Socrates and is as risky and as difficult today as it was in his time. And just as necessary. Plato linked lack of critical reflection and self-scrutiny with Athens' disastrous military and political policy blunders. The liberal arts, which are at the heart of a Fairfield education are meant precisely to liberate you from the tyranny of unexamined presupposition, from authoritarianism and obscurantism of any kind, and to open your imaginations to new possibilities for ourselves and for wider society.

But more than habits of rigorous analysis and critical inquiry are needed if you and I are to become global citizens. We need something that stretches our imaginations, opens us deeply to the humanity we share with our classmates, with the people on our corridor, with the people of Tanzania and Nicaragua, of Greenwich and Bridgeport. It is what allowed young Afrikaaners to see beyond the all-pervasive propaganda of their ethno-nationalist culture.

There is at least one other element that is required in your education here at Fairfield, if you are to become empathetic, effective global citizens. It is something that ought to come naturally, but, curiously, seems to be the cause of great shame for most of us. It is something most of us have been taught to hide or disguise. I am talking about our fundamental human weakness.

Please do accomplish great things, noble things here at Fairfield, please do stretch and excel, but not at the price of buying into the grandiose expectation of omnipotence and completeness. To deny your fundamental neediness and limitations is to separate yourself from the rest of us, to claim some imaginary higher status. I understand that incompleteness and neediness are frightening, and that illusions of toughness and invulnerability can be comforting, and at times can even feel necessary.

I understand that it is hard not to deny and to hide away from ourselves and others our humanity, our frailty, our fear. But, please, stay with the rest of us mottled, mixed, ordinarily people. Please do not be scandalized by our mistakes, foolishness, limits, our own imperfection and vulnerability. Learn to empathize with us, learn to see yourselves, us all sharing the same humanity, and able to offer one another support, understanding, and even love.

There is a great article about Father Gerry on page 12 in the Spring 2010 Issue of “A Holy Boldness: Pastoral Ministry for Jesuits.”

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Comments at meetings to be edited out of broadcasts | View Clip
09/14/2010
Compton Bulletin

C OMPTON?Residents are still fuming after the City Council voted last week to prevent viewers who watch council meetings on television from hearing comments made by audience members.

The Tuesday, Sept. 7, agenda item was identified as a ?minute motion? on the agenda, and there is no staff report or supporting documentation in the Sept. 7 agenda packet explaining the need to effectively censor Channel 36?s meeting broadcasts.

The item was approved in a split 3-1 vote, with Councilman Dr. Willie O. Jones being the lone dissenter. Councilwoman Yvonne Arceneaux was absent.

Listed on the agenda as ?Action: A request that the public comment section be excluded from Channel 36 coverage,? there was no discussion on how public comments will be cut from the live telecast or during replays throughout the week.

The local government access station could simply go silent or overdub the sound with music during the live telecast and subsequent replays. That portion of the meeting could also simply be blacked out or edited out altogether.

Jones was the only official to even question the item. ?Public comment and public dissent is very important,? Jones said. ?The Council has established rules of decorum, and we have also limited public speech? by ceasing to allow speakers to address the Council on agenda items as they are considered, a new rule that popped up last year. ?I?m having some difficulty understanding why we need this item,? he continued. ?I don?t think there?s a compelling need.? Councilwoman Barbara Calhoun, who supported the item, pointed out that speakers would still be able to address the Council, meaning the city would still be fulfilling its legal obligation.

The roll call for the vote instantly elicited anger from several audience members, who jumped from their seats and heckled Calhoun for supporting a policy that they said dances around the law to effectively curtail their rights. ?You?re gone, Calhoun!? yelled out Lynn Boone, a resident, city employee and Council critic.

Calhoun is up for re-election next year, and last week?s vote coupled with her vote to relaunch a local police department has many voters set on ousting her from the dais.

Residents Joyce Kelly, William Kemp and Roudolfo Ruval also sprang up and voiced disgust aimed toward the councilwoman as they individually exited the Council Chambers with security officers at their heels.

Kelly believes Mayor Eric J. Perrodin is behind the policy. She said that because the deputy district attorney knows he cannot prevent his critics from speaking about issues he does not want the public to be aware of or from criticizing him and other officials, this is his way of effectively silencing them.

But it appears to be legal. The Brown Act does not address the editing of meeting recordings. First Amendment experts said that because the policy affects all speakers rather than singling anyone out, it appears to be legal. Legal or not, many residents said they have a big problem with what they perceive to be censorship. ?You?ve done everything you can to skirt the Brown Act,? Kelly said during her public comments last Tuesday ? the last comments made by her or anyone else that television viewers will hear when watching Compton City Council meetings.

Benjamin Holifield, a resident who attended a protest outside of City Hall prior to last week?s meeting, said that the new policy is a prime example of why ?they (council members) should be put out and recalled.? ?They?re keeping the public from being seen and being heard, and that?s unacceptable,? Holifield said. ?I believe it?s time for a change.? Public policy experts are also troubled by the Council?s action, which a number of other Southland cities have contemplated but quickly abandoned when their outraged constituencies reacted. Only one city countywide is known to edit TV broadcasts of public meetings.

Norwalk has since 2004 blacked out public comments from its council and planning commission meeting broadcasts. Gadflies in that city told the Los Angeles Times in February that the blackout was instated after one of them criticized a councilman?s use of a city credit card on a trip to Palm Springs.

Former Santa Clara Mayor Judy Nadler, a senior fellow of government ethics at the Markula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University, thought it was a joke when she was informed of the Norwalk blackouts. ?The idea of cutting off the public from access to what fellow citizens have on their mind is troubling,? she told the Times. ?There?s no excuse for that.? It is the latest in a series of actions the Council has taken to curtail the public?s speech during meetings.

Before last fall, meeting attendees could speak on agenda items as the Council addressed them, as well as during the public comment period held at the end of the meeting prior to council members? comments. Public speakers have since last September been restricted from addressing the Council on specific agenda items while they are considered. Public comments were moved to the beginning of the agenda and increased to five minutes. Officials said the changes boost efficiency.

Boone, Kelly and Kemp each told The Bulletin in separate interviews last year that they believe those changes targeted them because they take the Council to task and share information that is not included in the staff reports for some agenda items. They believe the ban on speaking on individual items as the Council discusses them is a Brown Act violation.

California Government Code Section 54954.3(a) states that ?every agenda for regular meetings shall provide an opportunity for members of the public to directly address the legislative body on any item of interest to the public, before or during the legislative body's consideration of the item, that is within the subject matter jurisdiction of the legislative body.? According to the California First Amendment Coalition, the act?s wording suggests comment should be allowed before as well as during each individual item. But the coalition also notes on its website, www.cfac.org, that a single comment period at the beginning of a meeting could conceivably satisfy the provision.

A six-year-old appellate court decision, however, suggests both should be provided. ?When the Brown Act and the Sunshine Ordinance (a law specific to the city of San Francisco) are read in their entirety, we conclude that the lawmaking bodies clearly contemplated circumstances in which continuances and multiple sessions of meetings to consider a published agenda would be required, and thus they mandated that a single general public comment period be provide per agenda, in addition to public comment on each agenda item as it is taken up by the body.?

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Leadership lessons to live by | View Clip
09/14/2010
CTV - Online

Kouzes ... Posner ... Bennis. Three hallowed names in the literature of leadership, and they're offering new gifts for the fall reading season – simple gifts, in the shape of books with clearly stated ideas, unadorned but punchy, and certainly wise.

James Kouzes and Barry Posner, professors at Santa Clara University in California, write as a team. They are best-known for their 1987 bestseller The Leadership Challenge, which offered a principled and practical view of leadership.

Warren Bennis, a distinguished professor of business administration at the University of California and chairman for the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University's Kennedy School, is viewed as the founder of leadership studies. His 1985 book Leaders with Burt Nanus is a talisman for many executives, and he has collaborated on a string of books (my favourites are Organizing Genius, about great groups, and Co-Leaders, about pairs of effective leaders).

Professors Kouzes and Posner are continually asked what is new in leadership ideas. The more they pondered that question, they more they realized that good ideas aren't new, but have stood the test of time. They describe their new book, The Truth About Leadership, as “a collection of the real thing – no fads, no myths, no trendy responses – just truths that endure.”

They discuss 10 such enduring truths, backed by research they and others have carried out over the years:

You make a difference: Before you can lead, you have to believe you can make a positive impact on others. You have to believe in yourself.

Credibility is the foundation of leadership: As well as believing in yourself, you have to behave in a way that will spur belief in you. “If people don't believe in you, they won't willingly follow you,” the authors advise.

Values drive commitment: People want to know what you believe in and you need to know what others treasure if you are going to create the commitment needed to bring everyone together into a powerful force.

Focusing on the future sets leaders apart: Leaders need the capacity to imagine and articulate exciting future possibilities. They need a long-term perspective.

You can't do it alone: Leadership is a team sport.

Trust is paramount: If you rely on others, you will need their trust. That will only come if you trust them first.

Challenge is the crucible for greatness: Exemplary leaders don't maintain the status quo, they change it. “Change invariably involves challenge, and challenge tests you. It introduces you to yourself. It brings you face-to-face with your level of commitment, your grittiness, and your values,” they write.

You either lead by example or you don't lead at all: Leaders must keep their promises, and be role models for the values and actions they espouse.

The best leaders are the best learners: Learning is the master skill of leadership.

Leadership is an affair of the heart: Leaders are in love with their colleagues and their constituents. They make others feel important, and graciously show appreciation. And they love their work, or they wouldn't be successful at it.

Prof. Bennis's new book, Still Surprised, is a memoir describing his experiences in the Second World War as a leader of others at age 19; his mentorship by a towering figure in organizational psychology, Douglas MacGregor; the excitement of being at the cusp of the new breakthroughs in social sciences and management in the 1950s and 1960s; his experiences as provost at the State University of New York at Buffalo during the student activism of the 1960s and later as president of the University of Cincinnati; and, most poignantly, his feelings, at age 85, about growing old, as his body (and sometimes mind) fails him, and he experiences the insults of ageism.

The memoir is suffused with insights in leadership, such as how, at both Buffalo and Cincinnati, he learned the dangers of coming on too strong as a newly hired outsider, and the need to master a new culture before trying to change it. Or how he resigned from the helm at Cincinnati after being asked a simple question he couldn't answer: “Do you love being president of the University of Cincinnati?” The answer turned out to be that he would be happier as a professor than a president.

Whether leadership lessons are learned from Prof. Bennis's memoir or from the detailed advice from Professors Kouzes and Posner, either book makes for rewarding reading.

Just in: Business Model Generation (John Wiley, 280 pages, $41.95) by Alexander Osterwalder, a consultant, and Yves Pigneur, a professor of management information systems at the University of Lausanne, offers a variety of tools to reformulate your business model.

Consultant Catherine Parker shows how to approach today's new marketing vehicles in 301 Ways To Use Social Media To Boost Your Marketing (McGraw-Hill, 328 pages, $23.95).

Why Your World Is About To Get A Whole Lot Smaller (Vintage Canada, 322 pages, $22.00), economist Jeff Rubin's look at oil and globalization has been revised and updated for a paperback edition.

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Leadership lessons to live by | View Clip
09/14/2010
Globe and Mail - Online, The

Kouzes ... Posner ... Bennis. Three hallowed names in the literature of leadership, and they're offering new gifts for the fall reading season – simple gifts, in the shape of books with clearly stated ideas, unadorned but punchy, and certainly wise.

James Kouzes and Barry Posner, professors at Santa Clara University in California, write as a team. They are best-known for their 1987 bestseller The Leadership Challenge, which offered a principled and practical view of leadership.

Warren Bennis, a distinguished professor of business administration at the University of California and chairman for the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University's Kennedy School, is viewed as the founder of leadership studies. His 1985 book Leaders with Burt Nanus is a talisman for many executives, and he has collaborated on a string of books (my favourites are Organizing Genius, about great groups, and Co-Leaders, about pairs of effective leaders).

Professors Kouzes and Posner are continually asked what is new in leadership ideas. The more they pondered that question, they more they realized that good ideas aren't new, but have stood the test of time. They describe their new book, The Truth About Leadership, as “a collection of the real thing – no fads, no myths, no trendy responses – just truths that endure.”

They discuss 10 such enduring truths, backed by research they and others have carried out over the years:

You make a difference: Before you can lead, you have to believe you can make a positive impact on others. You have to believe in yourself.

Credibility is the foundation of leadership: As well as believing in yourself, you have to behave in a way that will spur belief in you. “If people don't believe in you, they won't willingly follow you,” the authors advise.

Values drive commitment: People want to know what you believe in and you need to know what others treasure if you are going to create the commitment needed to bring everyone together into a powerful force.

Focusing on the future sets leaders apart: Leaders need the capacity to imagine and articulate exciting future possibilities. They need a long-term perspective.

You can't do it alone: Leadership is a team sport.

Trust is paramount: If you rely on others, you will need their trust. That will only come if you trust them first.

Challenge is the crucible for greatness: Exemplary leaders don't maintain the status quo, they change it. “Change invariably involves challenge, and challenge tests you. It introduces you to yourself. It brings you face-to-face with your level of commitment, your grittiness, and your values,” they write.

You either lead by example or you don't lead at all: Leaders must keep their promises, and be role models for the values and actions they espouse.

The best leaders are the best learners: Learning is the master skill of leadership.

Leadership is an affair of the heart: Leaders are in love with their colleagues and their constituents. They make others feel important, and graciously show appreciation. And they love their work, or they wouldn't be successful at it.

Prof. Bennis's new book, Still Surprised, is a memoir describing his experiences in the Second World War as a leader of others at age 19; his mentorship by a towering figure in organizational psychology, Douglas MacGregor; the excitement of being at the cusp of the new breakthroughs in social sciences and management in the 1950s and 1960s; his experiences as provost at the State University of New York at Buffalo during the student activism of the 1960s and later as president of the University of Cincinnati; and, most poignantly, his feelings, at age 85, about growing old, as his body (and sometimes mind) fails him, and he experiences the insults of ageism.

The memoir is suffused with insights in leadership, such as how, at both Buffalo and Cincinnati, he learned the dangers of coming on too strong as a newly hired outsider, and the need to master a new culture before trying to change it. Or how he resigned from the helm at Cincinnati after being asked a simple question he couldn't answer: “Do you love being president of the University of Cincinnati?” The answer turned out to be that he would be happier as a professor than a president.

Whether leadership lessons are learned from Prof. Bennis's memoir or from the detailed advice from Professors Kouzes and Posner, either book makes for rewarding reading.

Just in: Business Model Generation (John Wiley, 280 pages, $41.95) by Alexander Osterwalder, a consultant, and Yves Pigneur, a professor of management information systems at the University of Lausanne, offers a variety of tools to reformulate your business model.

Consultant Catherine Parker shows how to approach today's new marketing vehicles in 301 Ways To Use Social Media To Boost Your Marketing (McGraw-Hill, 328 pages, $23.95).

Why Your World Is About To Get A Whole Lot Smaller (Vintage Canada, 322 pages, $22.00), economist Jeff Rubin's look at oil and globalization has been revised and updated for a paperback edition.

Special to The Globe and Mail

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Laid Off Workers in Their 50s Face Steep Climb | View Clip
09/14/2010
Ledger - Online, The

SAN JOSE, Calif. | In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans.

Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

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Laid Off Workers in Their 50s Face Steep Climb | View Clip
09/14/2010
Ledger - Online, The

[ unemployment rate for older workers has jumped sharply ]

Dai Sugano | San Jose Mercury News

Simone Cox takes a breather in her office at Ariba Network in Sunnyvale, California, before heading off to lunch on August 31, 2010. Cox, a 54-year-old, single woman, was laid off in early 2009 from Motorola, where she worked as a technical writer. She finally found job in September 2009 at Ariba Network, but has seen her home value drop and her savings plummet, while her health care costs have climbed.

SAN JOSE, Calif. | In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans.

Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

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Your Mind Your Money-Investment Traits | View Clip
09/14/2010
Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) - Online

SUSIE GHARIB: So what determines your investment personality? Is it being born to the right parents? Having a lot of money? Being male or female? Research suggests the answer may be all of the above. In tonight's 'Your Mind and Your Money' segment, Dan Grech says while some of our investment traits may be inherited, others may develop over time

DAN GRECH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: When it comes to investing, we've seen how some people claim to be born gamblers. They have no problem taking big risks. And some studies suggest that could be an inherited trait. But what if risk tolerance is actually something you develop -- say, as a result of your life experiences? And if that's true, how would a person who lived through the great depression feel about risk? Let's go back in time, to the 1930s. Beverly Bierman is 87 years old and she remembers the depression vividly.

BEVERLY BIERMAN, BERKELEY, CA: A lot of times, you'd walk the street and you'd see furniture on the sidewalk. It was a terrible thing. People, they were evicted because they couldn't pay the rent. And we felt so bad for these poor people.

GRECH: Since then, Bierman's been very conservative with her finances. And she's not alone. A study called depression babies found many members of her generation tend to shy away from risky investments, even decades after the depression. The study's co-author is economics Professor Ulrike Malmendier of the University of California-Berkeley. She says the depression baby study shows early life experiences play a big role in shaping investment attitudes.

ULRIKE MALMENDIER, ASSOC. PROF.,ECON., UNIV. OF CAL./BERKELEY: Environment does matter and being scarred for life is a very good way to think about it. A person who has gone through a big economic downturn like the great depression or even think about the current financial crisis, will be a different person afterwards. We will see a significantly different investment behavior.

GRECH: Malmendier found the depression left the biggest investment scars on those who were young adults at the time. She says most eventually recovered, as the turmoil became a smaller part of their life experience.

MALMENDIER: But then you also see that 10 years after, 20 years after, 30 years after -- the effect becomes less and less and less.

GRECH: That also happens with people who get their money values from their culture. Take immigrants from China who move to America. A new study shows that when Chinese immigrants first arrive, they tend to be big savers and to invest in hard assets -- just like people in China. But, finance Professor Meir Statman of Santa Clara University found that over time, they alter their money habits.

MEIR STATMAN, FINANCE PROFESSOR, SANTA CLARA UNIV.: When we move from one culture to another, from one country to another, we of course observe the new culture and we learn. And in time, we meld the two. So, Chinese Americans are more willing to take risks than people who have been in the United States for many generations, but not as much as people in China.

GRECH: Unlike your culture or your memory, one thing that doesn't fade over time is gender. Finance Professor Brad Barber of the University of California-Davis studied the records of 35,000 investors. He found a big difference between how men and women trade stocks.

BRAD BARBER, FINANCE PROFESSOR, UNIV. OF CAL./DAVIS: We came in thinking that men would trade more aggressively than women. What we did find was that men traded 50 percent more frequently than women. So, that's consistent with this notion that men are more over confident than women.

GRECH: All three of the professors we talked with agree on one thing. They say our biases on money matters are both inherited and learned. They believe some may be built into our genetic code or our brains, while others arrive via our cultures or our life experiences. Still, how do we keep those mental biases from hurting our investment decisions? To find out, we went to this totally unbiased fellow primate. He can't talk, but he seems to be saying keep your eye on the ball. For investors, that means stay focused on the facts. Dan Grech, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Miami.

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Pizarro: Morgan Autism Center using iPads to work with students | View Clip
09/14/2010
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Apple's iPad has been wowing people for months now, but Jennifer Sullivan, the executive director of the Morgan Autism Center in San Jose, has a great reason to be a fan.

Since the iPad was launched in April, teachers and doctors who work with autistic children and adults have been raving about the device. Apps like Proloquo2Go and Grace are being praised for their ability to help students with autism and other disabilities build communication skills.

Thanks to a grant from the Escher Family Foundation, the Morgan Autism Center was able to buy iPads for each of its classrooms; they arrived last week.

"We've had the iPads in the classrooms for a few days and clearly, they are already having an impact on our ability to expand our presentations and language options," Sullivan wrote on the center's blog (morganautismcenter.blogspot.com).

At the center's ninth annual Autism Conference on Sept. 25 at Santa Clara University, speech and language therapist Danielle Samson will demonstrate how the iPad can be used with students with autism.

Registration for the conference, co-hosted by Santa Clara University and the Children's Health Council, is $125 in advance or $150 at the door. For more information, go to www.morgancenter.org.

LIONS ROARING: The Lincoln High School Foundation is kicking off its

campaign to raise funds for the San Jose school's programs with a Sunday dinner in downtown San Jose.

The 5 p.m. event takes place at 71 Saint Peter, in San Pedro Square.

The foundation has also started a donor wall to honor Lincoln grads and families. The initial series of engravings will be limited to the first 50 people who donate $500 each. After that, it'll take contributions of $1,000 or more to get a spot on the wall.

Tickets to Sunday's dinner are $100, and Lincoln Lions supporters can get involved by calling 408-535-6300.

VILLAGE TO-DO: Big Basin Way will be closed both Sept. 25 and 26 to accommodate the Saratoga Art and Wine Festival.

The event will feature more than 100 artists, wineries and food vendors from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. A free shuttle will run from West Valley College and Saratoga High School.

WALKING SUCCESS: The students at Buchser Middle School in Santa Clara raised a lot of money for the school with a Walk-A-Thon last Friday, taking laps for two hours around the Townsend Field track. Probably more popular was the "teacher jail," in which instructors could be locked up for two minutes for $1. That alone raised $500.

Got a tip? Call Sal Pizarro at 408-627-0940 or e-mail him at spizarro@mercurynews.com.

Contact Sal Pizarro at spizarro@mercurynews.com or 408-627-0940.

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Pizarro: Morgan Autism Center using iPads to work with students | View Clip
09/14/2010
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Apple's iPad has been wowing people for months now, but Jennifer Sullivan, the executive director of the Morgan Autism Center in San Jose, has a great reason to be a fan.

Since the iPad was launched in April, teachers and doctors who work with autistic children and adults have been raving about the device. Apps like Proloquo2Go and Grace are being praised for their ability to help students with autism and other disabilities build communication skills.

Thanks to a grant from the Escher Family Foundation, the Morgan Autism Center was able to buy iPads for each of its classrooms; they arrived last week.

"We've had the iPads in the classrooms for a few days and clearly, they are already having an impact on our ability to expand our presentations and language options," Sullivan wrote on the center's blog (morganautismcenter.blogspot.com).

At the center's ninth annual Autism Conference on Sept. 25 at Santa Clara University, speech and language therapist Danielle Samson will demonstrate how the iPad can be used with students with autism.

Registration for the conference, co-hosted by Santa Clara University and the Children's Health Council, is $125 in advance or $150 at the door. For more information, go to www.morgancenter.org.

LIONS ROARING: The Lincoln High School Foundation is kicking off its

campaign to raise funds for the San Jose school's programs with a Sunday dinner in downtown San Jose.

The 5 p.m. event takes place at 71 Saint Peter, in San Pedro Square.

The foundation has also started a donor wall to honor Lincoln grads and families. The initial series of engravings will be limited to the first 50 people who donate $500 each. After that, it'll take contributions of $1,000 or more to get a spot on the wall.

Tickets to Sunday's dinner are $100, and Lincoln Lions supporters can get involved by calling 408-535-6300.

VILLAGE TO-DO: Big Basin Way will be closed both Sept. 25 and 26 to accommodate the Saratoga Art and Wine Festival.

The event will feature more than 100 artists, wineries and food vendors from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. A free shuttle will run from West Valley College and Saratoga High School.

WALKING SUCCESS: The students at Buchser Middle School in Santa Clara raised a lot of money for the school with a Walk-A-Thon last Friday, taking laps for two hours around the Townsend Field track. Probably more popular was the "teacher jail," in which instructors could be locked up for two minutes for $1. That alone raised $500.

Got a tip? Call Sal Pizarro at 408-627-0940 or e-mail him at spizarro@mercurynews.com.

Contact Sal Pizarro at spizarro@mercurynews.com or 408-627-0940.

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Pathways to Peace in the Middle East: A Perspective | View Clip
09/14/2010
Tikkun Magazine

by: Guest on September 14th, 2010 | No Comments »

Once again an American President has entered into the quagmire of Middle East peace negotiations. Once again leaders of the two sides have come together at the invitation of the American President to break bread in a photo op. Skepticism runs rampant and the desperate plea is heard exclaiming the principals to ratchet down their expectations. Why should this peace negotiation be different from all other peace negotiations?

And Joram, king of Israel, said, “Is it peace?” And Jehu, the next king of Israel, said, “What have you to do with peace?” (II Kings 9:17-19)

Writing in the Jerusalem Post (9/1/2010), Gershon Baskin, co-CEO of the Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information and an elected member of the leadership of Israel's Green Movement political party, emphasized the dire nature of the present situation: “There won't be many more opportunities to make it work. That is the growing consensus. Even if the public does not sense it, there is a real urgency; we must move toward reaching an agreement.”

This may be the last chance to reach an agreement — there should be no other way to perceive the current reality. The job at hand is not to outsmart the other side or to get a better deal than the other side; the challenge is to reach an agreement that will build lasting relationships based on mutual interests that will improve the lot of both peoples living in this land. Failure to reach an agreement would be a crime against both peoples.

Time is running out in the land where it is easier to lob/drop a bomb than to sign a piece of paper.

At one level, the challenge to reach an agreement would appear to be simple. Contrary to the media images, everyone is not hell-bent on destruction. Does anyone really think the goal of every resident of Gaza is to be a martyr? Does anyone really think that a country of Palestine would have no need for pensions because no one would live that long? Does anyone really think a wall can separate two peoples forever without there one day being all hell to pay when it falls? People would rather live in peace than in a constant state of tension but need help completing the journey.

Writing in the New York Times (8/27/10), Martin Indyk, Brookings Institution, stated, “The public on both sides supports a two-state solution So do a majority of Arabs. The simple truth is that most people in the Middle East are exhausted by this conflict.”

The point was reiterated a scant week later by Farid Senzai, Santa Clara University and Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, writing in The Journal News (9/4/10): “The Arabs are ready for peace. In the last few years there has been a dramatic shift in the attitudes across the Arab world.”

And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks (Isaiah 2:4)

Why then has peace proved so elusive? Why are so many so dismal about the success of this attempt at peace? Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak reminded us that there is more to peace than diplomats accumulating frequent flyer miles from endless shuttle flights. The mind needs to be awakened to the glory and wonder of people coming together and being able to resolve differences: “The biggest obstacle that now stands in the way of success is psychological…” (NYT 9/1/10). Thomas Friedman similarly expressed the despair that anything would come from something so devoid of passion and vision: “But while the talks are alive, they lack any sense of drama or excitement or larger possibilities … What these talks could really use is an emotional lift?” (NYT 9/8/10).

What then can be done to provide the necessary spark to ignite the peace process? What can transform the countless behind-the-scene meetings on the nuts and bolts of a possible peace accord into an exciting drama that stimulates the senses into wanting something positive, into preferring the possibilities of tomorrow over the dead-end of today?

Therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live (Deuteronomy 30:19).

Mubarak acknowledges that “we must rebuild trust and a sense of security” if the peace process is to succeed. Baskin offers words of advice to the negotiators: “first reach a declaration of principles that frames all the core issues and accepts the idea that the agreement must be complete and comprehensive, although implementation can be incremental over an agreed upon time frame.” While the words seem appropriate, they rest a fallacy that condemns the peace process to failure. They rely on the standard paradigm that the suits and the pantsuit meeting behind closed doors will then emerge into the daylight waving a peace of paper exclaiming “There is peace in our time, there is peace in our time” to the exultation of the crowd saying “Hallelujah! Hallelujah!” Perhaps it is time for a paradigm shift. Joseph Fishkin, Stanford University, commented on the need to change the way things are done: “People are tired of the elites telling them what to do. Perhaps it's time to turn that process upside down” (Time 9/13/10).

Many people are familiar with the touching scene of the brothers Isaac and Ishmael standing together at the grave of their father:

Abraham breathed his last and died in a good old age, an old man and full of years, and was gathered to his people. Isaac and Ishmael his sons buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron the son of Zohar the Hittite, east of Mamre (Genesis 25:8-9).

The again there is the story of Cain and Abel.

Cain said to Abel his brother, “Let us go out to the field.” And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and killed him (Genesis 4:8).

The time is long past due for the Palestinian and Israeli people to stand before the world and proclaim for the record for everyone to know

IS IT PEACE?

Are you asking for America's help to learn to live together or are you asking for America's help to kill each other? Let both peoples conduct plebiscites with no preconditions about the two pathways before them:

Cain and Abel

or

Isaac and Ishmael?

Vote.

What could be more of a core principle than to declare either for peace or war? What would provide more of a psychological boost to the negotiators than having the peoples declare for peace? What would provide more excitement and drama then involving the people in the peace process now?

If Hamas wants to deny Palestinians the chance to vote for peace because it is afraid of the result, force them to admit it for all the world to see.

If the Palestinians want to push the Israelis into the sea one terrorist bomb at a time, force them to admit it for all the world to see.

If the Israelis want to perpetuate the present because they think no peace treaty is necessary, force them to admit it for all the world to see.

To those who say “to make peace today with each other will require a small civil war within each of their communities” (Friedman), I say: Bring it on. Make my day. The world has been held hostage long enough.

Let the people vote.

Peter Feinman has a B.A. in History from the University of Pennsylvania, an M.B.A. in Accounting from New York University, a M.Ed. from New York University, and an Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia University. He is president of the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) Westchester Society and is the New York State Coordinator for the Bureau of Land Management's Project Archaeology.

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Yelp Beats "Deceptive Acts" Claims | View Clip
09/14/2010
WebProNews.com

09/14/2010

Yelp recently won a case against a dentist who tried who sued the site over a negative review, claiming defamation and "deceptive acts and practices" under New York state law.

The defamation part was pretty much old hat. This is not the first time someone has tried to sue the owners of a site (or even Yelp specifically) because they didn't like a review. The second part was new to the story, though the court still moved to dismiss it. Technology and intellectual property attorney Evan Brown writes on his Internet Cases blog:

The other claim against Yelp — for deceptive acts and practices — was intriguing, though the court did not let it stand. Plaintiff alleged that Yelp's Business Owner's Guide says that once a business signs up for advertising with Yelp, an “entirely automated” system screens out reviews that are written by less established users.

The problem with this, plaintiff claimed, was that the process was not automated with the help of algorithms, but was done by humans at Yelp. That divergence between what the Business Owner's Guide said and Yelps actual practices, plaintiff claimed, was consumer-oriented conduct that was materially misleading, in violation of New York's General Business Law Section 349(a).

In the end, the court decided that statements from Yelp's Business Owner's Guide were not consumer-oriented, so that was the end of it.

Eric Goldman, an Associate Professor of Law at Santa Clara University School of Law, writes on his Technology and Marketing Law Blog: "While Yelp avoided liability in this lawsuit, it should scrub its site to ensure it does not claim that Yelp's reviews are bias-free or the sole product of automated algorithms. For example, the complaint alleges that Yelp's guide says 'We remove the guesswork by screening out reviews that are written by less established users. The process is entirely automated to avoid human bias.' Obviously, the second half of the statement contains a fatal logic flaw; any algorithm intrinsically reflects human biases in its configurations."

Do you think the court was right to side with Yelp? Tell us what you think.

Yesterday, Yelp announced that it surpassed 13 million reviews. Yelp reviews were recently removed from Google Place Pages, instantly giving them less visibility.

Hat tips to Greg Sterling and Mike Masnick.

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Yelp Beats "Deceptive Acts" Claims | View Clip
09/14/2010
WebProNews.com

Yelp Wins in Dentist Case

Yelp recently won a case against a dentist who tried who sued the site over a negative review, claiming defamation and "deceptive acts and practices" under New York state law.

The defamation part was pretty much old hat. This is not the first time someone has tried to sue the owners of a site (or even Yelp specifically) because they didn't like a review. The second part was new to the story, though the court still moved to dismiss it. Technology and intellectual property attorney Evan Brown writes on his Internet Cases blog:

The other claim against Yelp — for deceptive acts and practices — was intriguing, though the court did not let it stand. Plaintiff alleged that Yelp's Business Owner's Guide says that once a business signs up for advertising with Yelp, an “entirely automated” system screens out reviews that are written by less established users.

The problem with this, plaintiff claimed, was that the process was not automated with the help of algorithms, but was done by humans at Yelp. That divergence between what the Business Owner's Guide said and Yelps actual practices, plaintiff claimed, was consumer-oriented conduct that was materially misleading, in violation of New York's General Business Law Section 349(a).

In the end, the court decided that statements from Yelp's Business Owner's Guide were not consumer-oriented, so that was the end of it.

Eric Goldman, an Associate Professor of Law at Santa Clara University School of Law, writes on his Technology and Marketing Law Blog: "While Yelp avoided liability in this lawsuit, it should scrub its site to ensure it does not claim that Yelp's reviews are bias-free or the sole product of automated algorithms. For example, the complaint alleges that Yelp's guide says 'We remove the guesswork by screening out reviews that are written by less established users. The process is entirely automated to avoid human bias.' Obviously, the second half of the statement contains a fatal logic flaw; any algorithm intrinsically reflects human biases in its configurations."

Do you think the court was right to side with Yelp? Tell us what you think.

Yesterday, Yelp announced that it surpassed 13 million reviews. Yelp reviews were recently removed from Google Place Pages, instantly giving them less visibility.

Hat tips to Greg Sterling and Mike Masnick.

News Tags: Legal, Yelp, Online Reputation, Lawsuits, Reviews

About the author:

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow WebProNews on

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The tweet heard 'round the world | View Clip
09/14/2010
WorldNetDaily

When the pastor of a small congregation in Florida tweeted plans to burn a Quran on Sept. 11 to commemorate the 9th anniversary of the Islamist attack on America, it set off a firestorm of rioting by extremist Muslims around the world.

President Obama, along with top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan Gen. David Petraeus, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and the Vatican, denounced the act and appealed to Pastor Terry Jones to "stand down," lest the burnings worsen an already enraged international Muslim community.

Jones had posted notice of the Quran burning at his and pages on July 11, and the notice quickly went viral on the Internet. A day before the scheduled torching however, Jones abandoned the idea.

The power of blogs

As tens of thousands crowded New York city streets for the Rally of Remembrance to protest the planned mosque at Ground Zero, none of the three cable news channels CNN, MSNBC, or FOX, carried the event live, opting to instead replay footage from the attack on America nine years ago on Sept. 11, 2001.

Blogger Pamela Geller, organizer of last Saturday's protest at Ground Zero, posts a link to a collection of news reports that were carried live on that day. Though the cable news channels did not cover the rally, several bloggers did. A good roundup can be found at The Noisy Room.

Righthaven defends its actions

In last week's Surfin' Safari, I reported that a U.S. Senate candidate had been caught in a copyright violation net and was being sued for using content from the Las Vegas Review on her campaign website.

In the continuing saga of bloggers who might inadvertently reprint copyrighted material, the CEO of Righthaven, a law firm that tracks Internet traffic for copyright violations, defended his company during a recent telephone roundtable discussion sponsored by an international law firm.

According to a report in the Las Vegas Sun, American legal and media insiders reportedly agreed that the unauthorized online re-posting of newspaper content is a problematic issue. But does it do financial damage to a newspaper's revenue, and if so, how much?

Among those grappling with the question were Barbara Wall, vice president and senior associate general counsel at Gannett Co., the nation's largest newspaper company; Eric Goldman, copyright scholar and associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law; and Steven Gibson, CEO at Las Vegas copyright enforcement company Righthaven LLC.

Some helpful discussion on the matter of "stealing" another's work can be found here: "How Social Mores Can Deal With 'Unfair' Copying, Even In Absence Of Copyright."

TechDirt's Mike Masnick asks why, "In covering all of the Righthaven lawsuits, we've noted that the company sues everyone for $75,000 and, bizarrely, that it also demands they hand over their domain name."

Facebook ghostwriters beware

While visiting TechDirt, we noted another piece by Mike Masnick. This one about rumors that Sarah Palin's Facebook entries are ghostwritten.

If so, is this a violation of Facebook's terms of service? Could it be considered a criminal offense? Better check out the TOS before letting someone else have access to your account.

And if you're planning a vacation or trip away from home, you might want to think twice about mentioning it on your Facebook page.

Google reads your mind

If you're using Google's search engine, you've noticed that as soon as you type in a couple of letters, a drop down window appears with suggested phrases. For example, type in "sur" and ten choices appear, from surfline to surfboards. Beneath that is an additional list revealing your last ten search words. Similar to the functionality of text message key words, Google's search bar tries to anticipate what you're going to ask.

Called "Google Instant Search," the experiment integrates new features that try to guess what you are typing and answer the query before serving a Search Engine Result Page.

Even Bob Dylan's into it.

Google not only reads your mind, it tells you where to walk, what's nearby, and gives you the street view. You'll never walk alone again.

One ringy-dingy rings 'em all

Google is getting into the VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) business, offering Gmail customers Google Voice, a free service. A video explains the ten features of Google's Call service.

Banking by Facebook?

Could Facebook become a peer-to-peer bank?

As Facebook approaches a billion users by 2012, it could provide a number of services: savings, lending, credit cards. Even more interesting is the idea of peer-to-peer lending, borrowing from other Facebook users and getting a better return on your money at lower risk. With a billion people doing it, this new business model could put the banking industry out of business.

Ecademy.com's Thomas Power explains "The Bank of Facebook."

Saved by a click

How would you like to get $50 off a Verizon Communications Droid X smart phone, or 10 percent off hotel rooms offered by Orbitz?

If you'd like to take advantage of some 30,000 deals from 5,000 merchants, bookmark this site: Savings.com.

With 80 employees, 30 of whom spend their time searching the Internet for coupon codes not already on file, Savings.com also enlists volunteers called "DealPros," to search in their free time.

How do you use Twitter?

Dozens of tweeters were asked that question. Their responses are printed in a series of "quirky and inspiring" articles called Twitter Tales.

Here's an unusual tale: A Mediaite reporter tweeted his heart attack!

You can hear me now!

I have spotty cell phone reception inside my house, but hallelujah! Now there's a mini cell tower I can purchase to use inside my home that will boost my reception.

Walt Mossberg reports: "These devices, technically called femtocells, work like small versions of a cell tower. You plug them into your home broadband network, through which they acquire a signal from the carrier's network. Then, they wirelessly redistribute that signal inside the home. Your cell phone treats this signal as if it came from a real outside tower and latches onto it. But the signal supposedly is stronger and better, because it's much closer and more focused."

It's what's right with the world

Last week I wrote about the launch of RightNetwork, a multi-platform television network offering programming described as "a right-minded perspective that includes an entire spectrum of opinion from thoughtful and reserved to bold and brash."

Founder Kelsey Grammer, the actor best known for his portrayal of "Frasier Crane" in the long-running TV series, recently explained RightNetwork to Fox Business News' Neil Cavuto. Watch the video here.

If your cable or satellite provider hasn't yet signed up Rightnetwork to bring it onto your TV screen, here's a list of phone numbers you can call to (borrowing a phrase from Cavuto) "Demand it!"

In the rearview mirror

1940 – Victory for RAF in Battle of Britain

1944 – Airborne invasion of Holland begins

1950 – U.N. stages daring assault on Inchon

1970 – Civil war breaks out in Jordan

1978 – Thousands dead in Iran earthquake

1982 – Hollywood princess dead

1982 – Refugees massacred in Beirut camps

1988 – Cubans blame shooting on 'CIA plot'

1993 – Rabin and Arafat shake on peace deal

Now playing at the Princess in Urbana, Ill.

Congratulations to WorldNetDaily readers Lloyd Phillips of Adamstown, Md.; Robert Ingram, Tinker AFB; F. Pultro, Philadelphia, Pa.; and Dale Talley, Elk Grove, Calif., who were among the first to correctly guess actor Sean Connery in his portrayal of William Forrester in the 2000 movie Finding Forrester.

Directed by Gus Van Sant, Finding Forrester won four awards and tells the story of a teen writing prodigy who finds a mentor in a reclusive author.

The quote was: "No thinking – that comes later. You must write your first draft with your heart. You rewrite with your head. The first key to writing is ... to write, not to think!"

This week's movie trivia quote: "Well you got to, Joe. You tell the American people what these men did here. You tell them how my troopers died."

Name the movie, the actor and the character. Send your answer to me at the email address below. Good luck!

Andrea Shea King is a talk-radio host who also writes at The Radio Patriot website and is known as Central Florida's "First Lady of Space Coast Conservatism."

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/13/2010
Belleville News-Democrat - Online

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your - ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market - or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

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Stuck in Limbo | View Clip
09/13/2010
Ledger - Online, The

SAN JOSE, Calif.

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans.

Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

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Tips on Seeking a Renewable Energy Degree | View Clip
09/13/2010
RenewableEnergyWorld.com

With jobseekers across the globe considering clean energy careers, how do they know where to begin?

New Hampshire, USA -- September is back to school month for many in the U.S. and elsewhere. As one season fades into the next, it's time for new beginnings and fresh thinking. Change is in the air and for some that means thinking about a career in clean energy.

Many analysts predict that by 2020 the global clean energy economy will top one trillion dollars. With that much money on the table, it's no surprise that people all over the world are wondering how they might join this vibrant new field. And green jobs may be more lucrative, too. According to the Council of Economic Advisers, green jobs pay an average of 10 to 20% more than other jobs.

“Green expertise makes an excellent overlay on almost any existing career,” said Kristen Bacorn, a nationally recognized educator and LEED certified building expert.

Bacorn believes that almost anyone can benefit from learning about the green economy. “To give an example from my own career as an educator and consultant, I earn more from green education and consulting than from conventional education and consulting,” she said.

Bacorn teaches courses designed for real estate professionals and others on topics such as green building, environmental regulation and green appraisal among others. She is part of a growing trend of educators, institutions and training programs focusing on the clean energy industry.

Advice for Jobseekers

Most human resource experts explain that before jumping into a new degree program, individuals must first decide what type of work they want to pursue.

“I am not a big advocate of people getting education ‘on spec,' without a planned career objective,” said Bacorn. “Prospective students should invest a little time looking into what jobs are growing, what qualifications are required for those jobs, and – most of all – what job they would find fulfilling,”

For many, that may mean simply using the skills they already have and applying them to a renewable energy or clean tech company.

An accountant is an accountant in any industry and may easily be able to switch tasks from one industry to the next. The same would apply to support personnel in large corporations and entry-level positions in departments such as human resource management, marketing and PR.

“Renewable energy businesses need accountants, administrative assistants, lawyers, sales people, managers, etc,” said Pat Fox, Director of Operations at the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC).

Like Bacorn, Fox believes that a small amount of clean energy training can help those wishing to apply their skills to the renewable energy market. “So, if someone has these basic skills that will translate well, they should look for training/educational programs that can give them foundational knowledge of renewable energy,” she said.

For those who are looking to get their hands into the actual transition from traditional energy to clean energy -- project managers, engineers, financiers, installers, operations and maintenance workers and higher-level positions like VPs of sales, business development or marketing -- more comprehensive renewable-energy specific knowledge will almost always be necessary.

Before you start a program however, you must first decide what industry interests you most. “Clean Energy” is a broad topic and includes everything from large and small wind power to solar power technologies like PV, CSP and solar thermal to geothermal, biofuels, hydro, ocean and biomass energy. Even more broadly, clean tech encompasses energy efficiency, smart grid and green building.

One good way to become informed about the clean energy economy is to follow the news of the industry, said Fox. “So, in addition to education,” she said, “I recommend that people get informed and involved. Join national renewable energy organizations in your area of interest; attend local and national conferences; and stay up with the news through [industry] publications,” she said.

Taking the Plunge: Renewable Energy Degree or Training?

Deciding between a short training program or a full-fledged multi-year degree program then comes back to the type of job a person seeks. “To become an installer or to go into technical sales, a training program should work well. However, to become a design engineer for a manufacturer, a degree will probably be required,” said Fox.

Bacorn is bullish on green building. She said that becoming a LEED Green Associate adds an impressive credential to any resume in almost any sector. Furthermore, courses can be found online, in colleges or adult education classes all over the U.S. “The Green Associate exam is very hard, and it is a mistake to underestimate the study required….so look for a quality course, not a quick and dirty solution,” she said.

Quality is the name of the game for IREC as well and if you are based in the U.S., the IREC website is a good source of information for educational programs. IREC has gone to great lengths to compile lists of university programs and training organizations to help those who wish to enter the clean energy workforce. Its university link offers 39 universities with courses or complete programs in Renewable Energy. IREC's training providers list offers 132 independent and community college programs that help train installers in all technologies.

While IREC hasn't evaluated the university programs (it's a voluntary listing where entities can set up an account and list their programs), they have awarded some training programs with ISPQ (Institute for Sustainable Power Quality) Accreditation, which is IREQ's “gold star of approval” for any program. You can see which programs are ISPQ accredited by visiting the ISPQ Awardees pageon the IREC site.

For those thinking about jumping into the industry but are unsure where to start, Bacorn recommends taking a creative approach. “If I were going to sell a product, wouldn't it be great to sell something people were required by law to buy? [It is] the same with jobs. There is a lot of new legislation occurring on the [U.S] federal, state and local level, and much of it involves jobs,” she said.

She sees a huge amount of growth potential in the area of green building and is particularly excited about the new ASHRAE 189.1 standard, which will require all buildings to operate more efficiently. Similar standards are being adopted in Europe, too. “The implication for jobseekers is that there will be more demand for green building professionals, such as renewable specialists, commissioning agents, air testing technicians, HVAC engineers, computer modeling experts, green product suppliers and many more,” she said.

A Listing of University Programs

To those in search of more education to help further their careers in this industry there are a plethora of renewable energy programs available. Some of these were mentioned in our first article on this topic, which came out in December 2008: More Universities Offering Master's Degrees Renewable Energy. Programs listed in that article are not listed here.

Since then, all across the globe, even more universities are offering clean tech programs or renewable energy tracks in their existing degree programs. Some are even starting new degree programs all together. While not exhaustive, a list of programs is below. Many offer programs that can be completed online. Please feel free to use the comment section to include other programs not listed here.

USA

IREC lists 39 U.S. University Programs at this site. In addition to those, here are a few more:

Santa Clara University announced plans to add a Masters degree in Sustainable Energy within the School of Engineering starting in the 2011-12 academic year. It already offers a certificate program.

UK

Loughborough University has a Master's Program in Renewable Energy.

Graduate School of the Environment has an extensive degree program.

NewCastle University has a flexible degree program focused on renewable energy.

University of Leeds has engineering programs that focus on renewable energy.

Denmark

Technical University of Denmark has an MSc program in Wind Energy and Master of Science in Engineering, Sustainable Energy.

Aalborg University has both undergraduate and graduate programs in Renewable Energy.

South Africa

Stellenbosch University offers a MA in RE.

Poland

The AGH University of Science and Technology has undergraduate and graduate programs in both traditional and renewable energy.

Sweden

The Royal Institute of Technology has an extensive onsite and distance Master's Degree program in Sustainable Energy.

Tajikistan

Tajik Technical University either has or is developing a Master's Degree Program in Renewable Energy developed under the Curriculum Development in Renewable Energy Technologies in Central Asia Universities (CRETA) program.

Australia

Murdoch University offers Master's Degree in Renewable Energy

Germany, France, Spain and the UK

The European Masters in Renewable Energy coordinated by the European Renewable Energy Centers Agency allows students to study in one of 4 different European countries and then perform field work in another area of Europe.

Find Your Passion

When thinking about starting something new, most experts agree that its passion first, expertise later. That means a bit of soul searching before you begin again. "Clearly, there is simply not a ‘one size fits all' answer," said IREC's Fox. "Determining the best educational path depends on the individual, their experience and their interests."

Kristen Barcorn concurs. "An individual should think of a pursuit in which they excel and explore how that supports the green revolution underway in our country," she said. "If you go with what you love, and you also love the planet, it's hard to go wrong."

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BICENTENNIAL HONORS A SHARED HERITAGE
09/13/2010
San Jose Mercury News

A few decades ago, when America celebrated its 200th birthday, the world was invited. And what a yearlong patriotic party it was, stretching from small towns to the National Mall.

Now it's Mexico's turn, with a cross-border, double spin.

The first of many local events celebrating and reflecting on Mexico's bicentennial kicked off Sunday with a parade in downtown San Jose commemorating the country's 1810 war of independence with Spain and social revolution of 1910 over land reform and equality.

"I feel Mexican like never before," said Miguel Larios, director of the Aztec dance group Movimiento Cultural Anahuac.

The thought that much of Aztec dance and identity had evaporated long before Mexico gained its independence from Spain was not lost on Larios. For him, Aztec culture lives on in his dancers, many of them bilingual Mexican-American teenagers.

"The Aztecs became today's Mexicans," Larios said. "This dance represents our roots."

With a similar sense of political and social roots, a wide range of local officials, university academics and Mexican diplomats have collaborated to offer an impressive lineup of discussions, concerts, films and more for the celebratory events.

The theme is the shared heritage between Mexico and California -- and by extension, the United States.

The bicentennial events offer a deep, serious look at the revolutionary and social forces these two neighbors have in common, but they also offer a rousing, foot-tapping good time. The bicentennial falls during Hispanic Heritage Month, lending a revolutionary theme to annual observances throughout the valley.

"Anyone who knows the history of San Jose knows that it was once part of Spain and Mexico," said Mayor Chuck Reed. "Mexico's independence was ours, too."

On Tuesday, Reed and David Figueroa, Mexico's top diplomat in San Jose, will raise the Mexican and American flags at City Hall. As much as anyone, Figueroa knows the meaning of shared heritage. His father was once a bracero, a Mexican guest worker in San Jose and Salinas.

"Our revolution, the American Revolution, the French Revolution, they were all born from the same idea of liberty," Figueroa said.

If boisterous, festive displays of patriotism are your thing, the main event should be "El Grito" on Wednesday night at the Police Athletic League stadium in San Jose. Thousands are expected to attend the free event featuring Mexican music, dance and food and ending with a rousing, traditional delivery of the Cry of Independence and a fireworks show. (See www.vivemexicoensanjose.com/heritage for times for all the events.)

While the pyrotechnics begin and end there, the bicentennial reloads over the next several weeks with historical firepower, art and music.

The Mexican Consulate in San Jose, headed by Figueroa, wasn't content just to stage the biggest El Grito celebration in the city's history. He dispatched aides to contact local academics and officials, who came up with the "shared heritage" theme.

San Jose State University historians Patricia Lopes Don and Michael Conniff decided that Mexico's war for independence in 1810 played to the faculty's strength.

The fifth floor of the Martin Luther King Library, jointly run by the city and SJSU, will feature a showing of "Viva Zapata" starring Marlon Brando, followed by a talk on the film by history professor George Vasquez. Students from National Hispanic University will perform a short play on the 1810 revolution, followed by SJSU English professor Susan Shillinglaw's lecture on "John Steinbeck and Mexico" and his film, "The Forgotten Village."

The next day, Thursday, is Mexico's Fourth of July. SJSU will offer a one-day blast of easy-to-digest panel discussions such as "Shared Heritage and Mexican Immigration."

Interestingly, most of the professors speaking have fascinating cross-border stories to tell about becoming Mexico experts.

Conniff was a buddy and classmate of Chicano playwright Luis Valdez. Their 1959 trip to Mexico put Conniff on his career path. Lopes Don was becoming a scholar on Spanish royals when a mentor suggested she look at a forgotten people, Mexican Indians immediately after the conquest.

A bit of good timing takes the bicentennial celebration back to the live stage and the annual San Jose Mariachi at the Mexican Heritage Festival in San Jose, Wednesday through Sept. 26. This year's theme, "Adelita! The Women of the Mexican Revolution," should offer plenty of corridos, the fiery, polka-infused ballads that gave voice to that war's struggle for agrarian reform and social equality.

Meanwhile, Santa Clara University offered to concentrate on the 1910 social revolution partly because school doesn't start until October and partly because it has Francisco Jimenez, a professor of modern languages and literature and an expert on that revolution's influence on contemporary Mexican-American art.

On Oct. 19, Santa Clara's Ramon Chacon will discuss that revolution in general, and Juan Velasco on Oct. 26 will talk about the novels that sprang from the 1910 conflict. Paco Padilla, an acclaimed composer and singer of the "Nueva Cancion," or New Song, will perform a tribute to revolutionary music at the campus recital hall Oct. 27.

Not to be left out, National Hispanic University, a relative newcomer on the academic scene in Silicon Valley, will have the playwright Valdez speak as part of Latino Heritage Month on Oct. 6. Stanford University also will have special exhibits, including revolutionary-era documents from Mexico, on display through June.

If the organizers of the bicentennial events believe a shared heritage between the United States and Mexico is worth exploring, they surely are also thinking beyond the binational border. History San Jose has brought three huge murals painted by famed muralist Miguel Covarrubias for the 1939 World's Fair. Once lost, the "Pageant of the Pacific" murals depict cultural and social connections throughout the entire Pacific world. They will be on display at San Jose City Hall beginning Wednesday.

Contact Joe Rodriguez at 408-920-5767.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Double celebration | View Clip
09/13/2010
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Now it's Mexico's turn, with a cross-border, double spin.

The first of many local events celebrating and reflecting on Mexico's bicentennial kicked off Sunday with a parade in downtown San Jose commemorating the country's 1810 war of independence with Spain and social revolution of 1910 over land reform and equality.

"I feel Mexican like never before," said Miguel Larios, director of the Aztec dance group Movimiento Cultural Anahuac.

The thought that much of Aztec dance and identity had evaporated long before Mexico gained its independence from Spain was not lost on Larios. For him, Aztec culture lives on in his dancers, many of them bilingual Mexican-American teenagers.

"The Aztecs became today's Mexicans," Larios said. "This dance represents our roots."

With a similar sense of political and social roots, a wide range of local officials, university academics and Mexican diplomats have collaborated to offer an impressive lineup of discussions, concerts, films and more for the celebratory events.

The theme is the shared heritage between Mexico and California -- and by extension, the United States.

The bicentennial events offer a deep, serious look at the revolutionary and social forces these two neighbors have in common, but they

also offer a rousing, foot-tapping good time. The bicentennial falls during Hispanic Heritage Month, lending a revolutionary theme to annual observances throughout the valley.

"Anyone who knows the history of San Jose knows that it was once part of Spain and Mexico," said Mayor Chuck Reed. "Mexico's independence was ours, too."

On Tuesday, Reed and David Figueroa, Mexico's top diplomat in San Jose, will raise the Mexican and American flags at City Hall. As much as anyone, Figueroa knows the meaning of shared heritage. His father was once a bracero, a Mexican guest worker in San Jose and Salinas.

"Our revolution, the American Revolution, the French Revolution, they were all born from the same idea of liberty," Figueroa said.

If boisterous, festive displays of patriotism are your thing, the main event should be "El Grito" on Wednesday night at the Police Athletic League stadium in San Jose. Thousands are expected to attend the free event featuring Mexican music, dance and food and ending with a rousing, traditional delivery of the Cry of Independence and a fireworks show. (See www.vivemexicoensanjose.com/heritage for times for all the events.)

While the pyrotechnics begin and end there, the bicentennial reloads over the next several weeks with historical firepower, art and music.

The Mexican Consulate in San Jose, headed by Figueroa, wasn't content just to stage the biggest El Grito celebration in the city's history. He dispatched aides to contact local academics and officials, who came up with the "shared heritage" theme.

San Jose State University historians Patricia Lopes Don and Michael Conniff decided that Mexico's war for independence in 1810 played to the faculty's strength.

The fifth floor of the Martin Luther King Library, jointly run by the city and SJSU, will feature a showing of "Viva Zapata" starring Marlon Brando, followed by a talk on the film by history professor George Vasquez. Students from National Hispanic University will perform a short play on the 1810 revolution, followed by SJSU English professor Susan Shillinglaw's lecture on "John Steinbeck and Mexico" and his film, "The Forgotten Village."

The next day, Thursday, is Mexico's Fourth of July. SJSU will offer a one-day blast of easy-to-digest panel discussions such as "Shared Heritage and Mexican Immigration."

Interestingly, most of the professors speaking have fascinating cross-border stories to tell about becoming Mexico experts.

Conniff was a buddy and classmate of Chicano playwright Luis Valdez. Their 1959 trip to Mexico put Conniff on his career path. Lopes Don was becoming a scholar on Spanish royals when a mentor suggested she look at a forgotten people, Mexican Indians immediately after the conquest.

A bit of good timing takes the bicentennial celebration back to the live stage and the annual San Jose Mariachi at the Mexican Heritage Festival in San Jose, Wednesday through Sept. 26. This year's theme, "Adelita! The Women of the Mexican Revolution," should offer plenty of corridos, the fiery, polka-infused ballads that gave voice to that war's struggle for agrarian reform and social equality.

Meanwhile, Santa Clara University offered to concentrate on the 1910 social revolution partly because school doesn't start until October and partly because it has Francisco Jimenez, a professor of modern languages and literature and an expert on that revolution's influence on contemporary Mexican-American art.

On Oct. 19, Santa Clara's Ramon Chacon will discuss that revolution in general, and Juan Velasco on Oct. 26 will talk about the novels that sprang from the 1910 conflict. Paco Padilla, an acclaimed composer and singer of the "Nueva Cancion," or New Song, will perform a tribute to revolutionary music at the campus recital hall Oct. 27.

Not to be left out, National Hispanic University, a relative newcomer on the academic scene in Silicon Valley, will have the playwright Valdez speak as part of Latino Heritage Month on Oct. 6. Stanford University also will have special exhibits, including revolutionary-era documents from Mexico, on display through June.

If the organizers of the bicentennial events believe a shared heritage between the United States and Mexico is worth exploring, they surely are also thinking beyond the binational border. History San Jose has brought three huge murals painted by famed muralist Miguel Covarrubias for the 1939 World's Fair. Once lost, the "Pageant of the Pacific" murals depict cultural and social connections throughout the entire Pacific world. They will be on display at San Jose City Hall beginning Wednesday.

Contact Joe Rodriguez at 408-920-5767.

Mexico bicentennial events

The Mexican consulate's website has the most complete listing of events in San Jose and at local universities: www.vivemexicoensanjose.com/heritage.

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/13/2010
State - Online, The

SAN JOSE, Calif. — In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your - ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market - or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

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Workers in 50s face steep climb from layoff's depths | View Clip
09/13/2010
Sun News - Online, The

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," said Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

Social Security takes hit

Underemployment saps economic hope

Out of work day after day after day

Area graduates face tough, uncertain job market (with video)

Workers recognize jobs gone for good

"Is it because we're in our 50s?" Kahn said. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our resumes, doing the math and thinking, 'This woman's a fuddy-duddy.' I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings not only need to "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, said Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante said. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno, Calif., marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he said, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting resumes into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your - ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga, Calif., is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she said, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings, and it's no surprise that Pleasanton, Calif., career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he said, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job-hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox said. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market - or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she said. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

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Is college worth it? | View Clip
09/12/2010
RespectDrugs

By FrequencyPublished: September 13, 2010Posted in: PsychologyTags: College, worth

Revenge of the nerds: Should we listen to futurists or are they leading us towards ‘nerdocalypse'?

As night thickens around Marina Boulevard on a murky San Francisco evening, one thing is crystal-clear: the future is not what it used to be. The wildest, most mind-frazzling visions of the years ahead are no longer the sole preserve of science fiction. At least, it seems that way at a reception to mark the start of the 2010 Singularity Summit, the world's leading forum for serious discussion of …

Read more on Independent

Santa Clara University to Harness the Academic Power of Renewable Energy

SANTA CLARA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Santa Clara University's School of Engineering is now offering a Renewable Energy Certificate for engineering graduate students. The certificate helps engineers in the semiconductor field prepare for one of the fastest growing sectors in world – alternative energy. The certificate helps refresh the skill set of experienced engineers/professionals looking to …

Read more on Business Wire

Santa Clara University to Harness the Academic Power of Renewable Energy

SANTA CLARA, Calif.—-Santa Clara University's School of Engineering is now offering a Renewable Energy Certificate for engineering graduate students. The certificate helps engineers in the semiconductor field prepare for one of the fastest growing sectors in world – alternative energy.

Read more on Business Wire via Yahoo! Finance

Facebook invests heavily in developing new engineers' talent

By Jessica Guynn, Los Angeles Times Friday, September 10, 2010 SAN FRANCISCO — The first day on the job for employees at the Palo Alto, Calif., headquarters of Facebook Inc. unfolds as it does at many other companies. New engineers get a welcome e-mail, a desk and their first of many free gourmet meals in the cafeteria. But the next day, before they can begin cranking out code for the world's …

Read more on St. Petersburg Times

Is college worth it?

Money for nothing Some high achievers don't think a university degree is a good investment. They should know.  Five dropouts who created history

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With two revolutions to celebrate, Mexico wants to share with U.S. | View Clip
09/12/2010
San Jose Mercury News - Online

A few decades ago, when America celebrated its 200th birthday, the world was invited. And what a year-long patriotic party it was, stretching from small towns to the National Mall.

Now it's Mexico's turn, with a cross-border, double twist.

The first of many local events celebrating and reflecting on Mexico's bicentennial kicked off Sunday with a parade in downtown San Jose commemorating the country's 1810 war of independence from Spain and social revolution of 1910 over land reform and equality.

"I feel Mexican like never before," said Miguel Larios, director of the Aztec dance group Movimiento Cultural Anahuac.

The thought that much of Aztec dance and identity had evaporated long before Mexico gained its independence from Spain was not lost on Larios. For him, Aztec culture lives on in his dancers, many of them bilingual Mexican-American teenagers.

"The Aztecs became today's Mexicans," Larios said. "This dance represents our roots."

With a similar sense of political and social roots, a wide range of local officials, university academics and Mexican diplomats have collaborated to offer an impressive lineup of discussions, concerts, film-showings and more to the celebratory events.

The theme is the shared heritage between Mexico and California -- and by extension the United States. "Anyone who knows the history of San Jose knows that it was once part of Spain and Mexico," said Mayor Chuck Reed. "Mexico's independence was ours too."

On Tuesday, Reed and David Figueroa, Mexico's top diplomat in San Jose, will raise the Mexican and American flags at City Hall. As much as anyone, Figueroa knows the meaning of shared heritage. His father was once a bracero, a Mexican guest worker in San Jose and Salinas.

"Our revolution, the American Revolution, the French Revolution, they were all born from the same idea of liberty," Figueroa said.

If boisterous, festive displays of patriotism are your thing, the main event should be "El Grito" on Wednesday night at the Police Athletic League stadium in San Jose. Thousands are expected to attend the free event featuring Mexican music, dance, food and ending with a rousing, traditional delivery of the Cry of Independence and a fireworks show. (See www.vivemexicoensanjose.com/heritage for times to all the events.)

While the pyrotechnics begin and end there, the bicentennial reloads over the next several weeks with historical firepower, art and music.

The Mexican consulate in San Jose, headed by Figueroa, wasn't content just to stage the biggest El Grito celebration in the city's history. He dispatched aides to contact local academics and officials, who came up with the "shared heritage" theme.

San Jose State University historians Patricia Lopes Don and Michael Conniff decided Mexico's war for independence in 1810 played to the faculty's strength.

The fifth floor of the SJSU Martin Luther King library will feature a showing of "Viva Zapata" starring Marlon Brando, followed by a talk on the film by history professor George Vasquez. Students from National Hispanic University will perform a short play on the 1810 revolution, followed by SJSU English professsor Susan Shillinglaw's lecture on "John Steinbeck and Mexico" and his film, "The Forgotten Village."

The next day, Thursday, is Mexico's Fourth of July. SJSU will offer a one-day blast of easy-to-digest panel discussions such as "Shared Heritage and Mexican Immigration."

Interestingly, most of the professors speaking have fascinating, cross-border stories to tell about becoming Mexico experts.

Conniff was a buddy and classmate of Chicano playwright Luis Valdez. Their 1959 trip to Mexico put Conniff on his career path. Lopes Don was becoming a scholar on Spanish royals when a mentor suggested she look at a forgotten people, Mexican Indians immediately after the conquest.

A bit of good timing takes the bicentennial celebration back to the live stage and the annual San Jose Mariachi at Mexican Heritage Festival in San Jose, Sept. 15-26. This year's theme, "Adelita! The Women of the Mexican Revolution," should offer plenty of "corridos," the fiery, polka-infused ballads that gave voice to that war's struggle for agrarian reform and social equality.

Meanwhile, Santa Clara University offered to concentrate on the 1910 social revolution partly because school doesn't start until October and partly because it has Francisco Jimenez, a professor of modern languages and literature and an expert on that revolution's influence on contemporary Mexican-American art.

On Oct. 19, Santa Clara's Ramon Chacon will discuss that revolution in general and Juan Velasco on Oct. 26 will talk about the novels that sprang from the 1910 conflict. Paco Padilla, an acclaimed composer and singer of the "Nueva Cancion," or New Song, will perform a tribute to revolutionary music at the campus recital hall Oct. 27.

Not to be left out, National Hispanic University, a relative newcomer on the academic scene in Silicon Valley, will have the playwright Valdez speak as part of Latino Heritage Month on Oct. 6. Stanford University also will have special exhibits, including revolutionary-era documents from Mexico, on display through next June.

If the organizers of the bicentennial events believe a shared heritage between the United States and Mexico is worth exploring, they surely are also thinking beyond the binational border. History San Jose has brought three huge murals painted by famed muralist Miguel Covarrbias for the 1939 World's Fair. Once lost, the "Pageant of the Pacific" murals depict cultural and social connections throughout the entire Pacific world. They will be on display at San Jose City Hall beginning on Wednesday.

Contact Joe Rodriguez at 408-920-5767.

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GADGETS CLOSER TO DOING IT ALL\
09/11/2010
Baltimore Sun

Don't be surprised if one day your refrigerator nags you to lose weight, your phone blocks calls it figures you're too stressed to handle and your wisecracking car entertains you with pun-filled one-liners.

Within a decade or two, researchers predict, consumer gadgets will be functioning as hyperattentive butlers, anticipating and fulfilling people's needs without having to be told. Life not only would be more convenient, it might last longer Devices could monitor people's health and step in when needed to help them get better.

"I think it's inevitable," said Michael Freed, an artificial-intelligence specialist and program director at think tank SRI International, which has been studying the concept for the military. Noting that some of these gadgets already are being developed, he added, "I expect we'll see more soon - a trickle and then a flood."

The technology propelling this new generation of personal assistants is a combination of sophisticated sensors and carefully tailored computer software. As envisioned, the machines would adjust their actions to the preferences and needs of an individual by analyzing data on the person's past actions and monitoring current behavior with cameras, audio recorders and other sensors.

Intel Corp., the Silicon Valley chip-maker that has been studying the technology for several years, believes that one day soon the gadgets will have the ability to read their owner's emotions.

While some experts have proposed that face and voice recognition gear be used to detect a person's disposition, Intel has been experimenting with heart monitors and galvanic skin-response sensors. A study it did last year envisioned the gadgets detecting mood swings "while people are driving, singing, chatting with friends, attending a boring meeting and even while going to the dentist."

Others expect household appliances eventually will be designed with human-like personalities. In a study this year that was partly financed by Nissan, researchers at Japan's Hokkaido University experimented with cheery-sounding devices that they imagined could serve as "artificial companions for elderly and lonely people" or as car navigation equipment that could "entertain drivers by talking and possibly by joking."

Although some gadgets already make assumptions about what people want, such as word processing software that automatically corrects grammar, the devices contemplated by Intel, Hewlett-Packard Co. and other companies would be capable of much more sophisticated judgments about a broader array of human needs. That's a complex task - so difficult that some experts are skeptical the technology will be ready in the near future.

"My guess is that we will get there in time, but it's a little further off than the most ambitious announcements from a lot of companies have indicated," said Robert Sloan, who heads the computer science department at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "There are a lot of hard problems to solve."

But other experts say the idea recently has become more practical because of the proliferation of computerized devices, including universal remote controls, MP3 players, air conditioning equipment, microwave ovens, security systems, lawn-sprinkler controllers, exercise equipment and toys.

Because many of these devices come with cameras, global positioning systems and other sensors to monitor what's around them, these experts say, it's not hard to imagine them gathering enough data about people to act autonomously on their behalf, assuming the individuals let the gizmos have that authority.

One product that already claims to partly think for its owner is a "personal assistant" app for the iPhone and iPod developed by Siri, a company Apple bought in April.

Besides being able to recommend a good play, book a taxi and offer helpful reminders, the app, which responds to oral queries, "adapts to your preferences over time," according to Siri.

Other products could be on the way soon, said Diane Cook, a researcher at Washington State University, which has an experimental smart house filled with such devices. "We have companies large and small and in-between visiting us monthly - IBM, Bosch, Qualcomm - all wanting to commercialize it, all trying to decide what that first step is, that first niche," she said.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency hopes to develop computerized assistants for commanders that "can reason, learn from experience, be told what to do, explain what they are doing, reflect on their experience and respond robustly to surprise."

All this raises concerns for Eric Goldman, who directs Santa Clara University's High Tech Law Institute.

"The more data we gather, the more the government is going to want to get its paws on it," he said, adding that lawyers in court cases may try to obtain it too.

Copyright © 2010 The Baltimore Sun Company

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Gadgets closer to doing it all
09/11/2010
Orlando Sentinel

Don't be surprised if one day your refrigerator nags you to lose weight, your phone blocks calls it figures you're too stressed to handle and your wisecracking car entertains you with pun-filled one-liners.

Within a decade or two, researchers predict, consumer gadgets will be functioning as hyperattentive butlers, anticipating and fulfilling people's needs without having to be told. Life not only would be more convenient, it might last longer Devices could monitor people's health and step in when needed to help them get better.

"I think it's inevitable," said Michael Freed, an artificial-intelligence specialist and program director at think tank SRI International, which has been studying the concept for the military. Noting that some of these gadgets already are being developed, he added, "I expect we'll see more soon -- a trickle and then a flood."

The technology propelling this new generation of personal assistants is a combination of sophisticated sensors and carefully tailored computer software. As envisioned, the machines would adjust their actions to the preferences and needs of an individual by analyzing data on the person's past actions and monitoring current behavior with cameras, audio recorders and other sensors.

Intel Corp., the Silicon Valley chip-maker that has been studying the technology for several years, believes that one day soon the gadgets will have the ability to read their owner's emotions.

While some experts have proposed that face and voice recognition gear be used to detect a person's disposition, Intel has been experimenting with heart monitors and galvanic skin-response sensors. A study it did last year envisioned the gadgets detecting mood swings "while people are driving, singing, chatting with friends, attending a boring meeting and even while going to the dentist."

Others expect household appliances eventually will be designed with human-like personalities. In a study this year that was partly financed by Nissan, researchers at Japan's Hokkaido University experimented with cheery-sounding devices that they imagined could serve as "artificial companions for elderly and lonely people" or as car navigation equipment that could "entertain drivers by talking and possibly by joking."

Although some gadgets already make assumptions about what people want, such as word processing software that automatically corrects grammar, the devices contemplated by Intel, Hewlett-Packard Co. and other companies would be capable of much more sophisticated judgments about a broader array of human needs. That's a complex task -- so difficult that some experts are skeptical the technology will be ready in the near future.

"My guess is that we will get there in time, but it's a little further off than the most ambitious announcements from a lot of companies have indicated," said Robert Sloan, who heads the computer science department at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "There are a lot of hard problems to solve."

But other experts say the idea recently has become more practical because of the proliferation of computerized devices, including universal remote controls, MP3 players, air conditioning equipment, microwave ovens, security systems, lawn-sprinkler controllers, exercise equipment and toys.

Because many of these devices come with cameras, global positioning systems and other sensors to monitor what's around them, these experts say, it's not hard to imagine them gathering enough data about people to act autonomously on their behalf, assuming the individuals let the gizmos have that authority.

One product that already claims to partly think for its owner is a "personal assistant" app for the iPhone and iPod developed by Siri, a company Apple bought in April.

Besides being able to recommend a good play, book a taxi and offer helpful reminders, the app, which responds to oral queries, "adapts to your preferences over time," according to Siri.

Other products could be on the way soon, said Diane Cook, a researcher at Washington State University, which has an experimental smart house filled with such devices. "We have companies large and small and in-between visiting us monthly -- IBM, Bosch, Qualcomm -- all wanting to commercialize it, all trying to decide what that first step is, that first niche," she said.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency hopes to develop computerized assistants for commanders that "can reason, learn from experience, be told what to do, explain what they are doing, reflect on their experience and respond robustly to surprise."

All this raises concerns for Eric Goldman, who directs Santa Clara University's High Tech Law Institute.

"The more data we gather, the more the government is going to want to get its paws on it," he said, adding that lawyers in court cases may try to obtain it too.

Copyright © 2010 Orlando Sentinel Communications

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New plaque salutes top teachers | View Clip
09/11/2010
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Beverly McCarter says she is humbled by the recognition.

"I feel very flattered. I believe there are more teachers that deserve to get the award besides me," said McCarter, a fourth- and fifth-grade teacher at Joseph Weller Elementary School.

McCarter, 57, was on hand last Thursday to see both her name and photo appear at an unveiling ceremony for a new plaque placed inside the Milpitas Public Library.

That day, the plaque was concealed under a black cloth until McCarter, Milpitas Board of Education Vice President Mike Mendizabal and Community Librarian Linda Arbaugh pulled down the veil to reveal the Leo B. Murphy Award for the Milpitas Unified School District Teacher of the Year.

McCarter who showed up to the Sept. 2 unveiling with her husband, Allen, and Weller Elementary teachers Jan Miller and Mary Caraballo was formally announced as Milpitas' 2010 Teacher of the Year during a school district ceremony in May.

The Milpitas Rotary Club sponsored the new plaque, which now hangs on a north wall near the front lobby of the library at 160 N. Main St., and will honor Milpitas' public school teachers. The wood and metal plaque features up to 40 smaller bronze placards including nine filled placards containing the names of past recipients going back to the 2001 honoree, Ann Crabtree of William Burnett Elementary School.

"That gives us enough for 30 years more," Frank De Smidt, a Milpitas Rotary Club member, said.

De Smidt explained the new plaque

fabricated and designed by San Carlos-based Lindeburg and Co. for less than $500 with input from the Rotary Club and Milpitas school district i a way to give local teachers greater public recognition.

"The same kind of recognition as police, fire and city employee of the year currently receive," he said.

The plaque is named after Leo B. Murphy one of Milpitas' founding fathers who gave decades of service to the city and schools.

In 1956, as Milpitas was first emerging as a city, its first high school staff was recruited from the ranks of teachers at James Lick High School on the east side of San Jose. At that time, Murphy agreed to teach and coach basketball for the 190 ninth- and 10th-graders who would make the switch when the Samuel Ayer High School campus was ready. Murphy came along with them and became Ayer's first principal.

The former Santa Clara University basketball star would later join Sal Cracolice and Henry Strickroth to bring about the Milpitas Youth Center, which later became the YMCA, and is now the Sal Cracolice Building.

In addition, Murphy was a longtime leader of the Milpitas Rotary Club and was the group's president from 1960 to 1961.

"Basically, Leo was active in Rotary and schools and I think with this award we wanted to try to keep his memory alive," said Karl Black, Milpitas Unified School District superintendent.

Black noted that this teachers' award is different from the other well-known Leo B. Murphy Award, which honors Milpitas High's top student athletes.

Every year Milpitas Unified School District teachers and staff nominate top teachers from the schools, Adult Education and other campuses. Later, a committee narrows the list down to one Teacher of the Year for the school district.

"We have our own awards ceremony in May," Black said, adding all teacher nominees are honored with certificates during a district-wide luncheon. "It's probably about 15 or 16 teachers."

Black said the plaque's placement in the new library also honored the past as the new 60,000-square-foot library is centered by the former site of the historic Milpitas Grammar School.

"We thought it was an appropriate place to put the plaque as the school and the library are a place of learning," Black said, adding the plaque includes a photo and short biography of the latest Teacher of the Year. "We can change that out every single year."

Black also praised the work McCarter had done for the school district and its students.

"She's taught for a while and she's respected by her peers," Black said of McCarter's roughly 15 years working for Milpitas Unified. "She's a professional, she goes the extra mile and her students have a record of achievement."

Contact Ian Bauer at ibauer@themilpitaspost.com or 408-262-2454

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GADGETS CLOSER TO DOING IT ALL
09/11/2010
Sun Sentinel

Don't be surprised if one day your refrigerator nags you to lose weight, your phone blocks calls it figures you're too stressed to handle and your wisecracking car entertains you with pun-filled one-liners.

Within a decade or two, researchers predict, consumer gadgets will be functioning as hyperattentive butlers, anticipating and fulfilling people's needs without having to be told. Life not only would be more convenient, it might last longer Devices could monitor people's health and step in when needed to help them get better.

"I think it's inevitable," said Michael Freed, an artificial-intelligence specialist and program director at think tank SRI International, which has been studying the concept for the military. Noting that some of these gadgets already are being developed, he added, "I expect we'll see more soon - a trickle and then a flood."

The technology propelling this new generation of personal assistants is a combination of sophisticated sensors and carefully tailored computer software. As envisioned, the machines would adjust their actions to the preferences and needs of an individual by analyzing data on the person's past actions and monitoring current behavior with cameras, audio recorders and other sensors.

Intel Corp., the Silicon Valley chip-maker that has been studying the technology for several years, believes that one day soon the gadgets will have the ability to read their owner's emotions.

While some experts have proposed that face and voice recognition gear be used to detect a person's disposition, Intel has been experimenting with heart monitors and galvanic skin-response sensors. A study it did last year envisioned the gadgets detecting mood swings "while people are driving, singing, chatting with friends, attending a boring meeting and even while going to the dentist."

Others expect household appliances eventually will be designed with human-like personalities. In a study this year that was partly financed by Nissan, researchers at Japan's Hokkaido University experimented with cheery-sounding devices that they imagined could serve as "artificial companions for elderly and lonely people" or as car navigation equipment that could "entertain drivers by talking and possibly by joking."

Although some gadgets already make assumptions about what people want, such as word processing software that automatically corrects grammar, the devices contemplated by Intel, Hewlett-Packard Co. and other companies would be capable of much more sophisticated judgments about a broader array of human needs. That's a complex task - so difficult that some experts are skeptical the technology will be ready in the near future.

"My guess is that we will get there in time, but it's a little further off than the most ambitious announcements from a lot of companies have indicated," said Robert Sloan, who heads the computer science department at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "There are a lot of hard problems to solve."

But other experts say the idea recently has become more practical because of the proliferation of computerized devices, including universal remote controls, MP3 players, air conditioning equipment, microwave ovens, security systems, lawn-sprinkler controllers, exercise equipment and toys.

Because many of these devices come with cameras, global positioning systems and other sensors to monitor what's around them, these experts say, it's not hard to imagine them gathering enough data about people to act autonomously on their behalf, assuming the individuals let the gizmos have that authority.

One product that already claims to partly think for its owner is a "personal assistant" app for the iPhone and iPod developed by Siri, a company Apple bought in April.

Besides being able to recommend a good play, book a taxi and offer helpful reminders, the app, which responds to oral queries, "adapts to your preferences over time," according to Siri.

Other products could be on the way soon, said Diane Cook, a researcher at Washington State University, which has an experimental smart house filled with such devices. "We have companies large and small and in-between visiting us monthly - IBM, Bosch, Qualcomm - all wanting to commercialize it, all trying to decide what that first step is, that first niche," she said.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency hopes to develop computerized assistants for commanders that "can reason, learn from experience, be told what to do, explain what they are doing, reflect on their experience and respond robustly to surprise."

All this raises concerns for Eric Goldman, who directs Santa Clara University's High Tech Law Institute.

"The more data we gather, the more the government is going to want to get its paws on it," he said, adding that lawyers in court cases may try to obtain it too.

PHOTO Drawing How appliances could save a life. MCT Graphic

Copyright © 2010 Sun-Sentinel

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Web Impostors May Face Prison in California (BusinessWeek) | View Clip
09/10/2010
ABC Money

Published : Fri, 10 Sep 2010 09:17

California Web impostors beware: You may soon be breaking the law, even if you aren't one of the perpetrators targeted by the state's "e-personation" bill.

The measure, which is awaiting Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's signature, carries fines of as much as $1,000 and a year in jail for anyone who poses as another person online with malicious intent. The law, which would take effect on Jan. 1, would also allow victims to file civil suits.

People other than criminals may be affected by the legislation, Bloomberg Businessweek.com reported today. Pranksters, writers of satire, and even activists living outside the state could be subject to legal action, some lawyers say. Fake accounts in the names of celebrities and politicians abound on microblogging site Twitter and social network Facebook.

"The law is very vague," Aaron Simpson, a privacy lawyer and partner at firm Hunton & Williams in New York, said in an interview.

"Legitimate forms of speech could be caught within its grasp. This is going to be tough for the courts to process."

The law applies to anyone who credibly impersonates "for purposes of harming, intimidating, threatening, or defrauding another person," according to the language of the bill, whose author is state Senator Joe Simitian, a Democrat whose district includes parts of Silicon Valley.

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Online impersonators living outside the state may be affected, said Eric Goldman, an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. "It's impossible for people to respect geographic borders when sending content over the Internet," Goldman said in an interview.

A wave of e-personation laws across the country -- New York and Texas have enacted such legislation -- may curb activists who use a strategy known as "identity correction," in which they impersonate an

organization on the Web or offline to shine light on a political cause.

"The targets of this satire are frequently not very happy, so they make all kinds of legal threats," said Corynne McSherry, senior attorney at San Francisco-based privacy-rights group Electronic Frontier Foundation, in an interview. "Activists may feel chilled."

Take the Yes Men, a group of 300 self-described impostors. Last year the group staged a Washington news conference posing as members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. They also created a website using the real group's logos, part of an effort to lobby for a change in the chamber's stance on climate-change legislation.

The real chamber filed a civil complaint that's pending in federal court. This was the first legal action taken against the Yes Men's antics, co-founder Jacques Servin said.

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California's law "is giving some of our targets

ammunition against us," Servin said. Undeterred, the Yes Men are starting a consulting service to teach other activist groups how to stage identity correction events.

Other satirists and jokesters may not be protected under the new law. Twitter alone has some 200 accounts from people purporting to be Apple (NasdaqGS:AAPL - News) Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs. Many of them, such as AngrySteveJobs andTHATstevejobs, offer biting or funny commentary on Apple news and products, making it clear that they are impersonators.

At least nine accounts on Facebook feature the name and likeness of Microsoft (NasdaqGS:MSFT - News) Chairman Bill Gates. Even Schwarzenegger, who will decide the bill's fate, has about 10 Twitter and 9 Facebook profiles using his name.

Schwarzenegger "hasn't taken a position on the bill yet," said Rachel Arrezola, a spokeswoman for the governor.

In Texas, authorities have shuttered at least one fake Twitter

account, AustinPD, that impersonated the Austin Police Department. In New York, authorities are trying to track down a person who posed on Facebook as state Senator Andrew J. Lanza, the author of that state's e-personation law. (Some of Lanza's close friends and staff added the impostor as a Facebook "friend.") "While no malicious intent has yet been indicated in this instance, we do know that constituents have contacted the site, believing they are communicating with the senator," according to a July 26 blog post on Lanza's official website.

Facebook>

While California's bill may be hard to enforce across state lines, federal fraud laws do cover online crime, said Santa Clara University's Goldman.

Many Web companies, including Twitter and Facebook, remove offensive content by request.

"Facebook has always been based on a real-name culture," spokesman Simon Axten said in a

statement. "It's a violation of our policies to use a fake name or operate under a false identity, and we encourage people to report anyone they think is doing this."

California's law originated in a request by Carl Guardino, chief executive officer of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, an association of more than 300 technology companies including Google (NasdaqGS:GOOG - News), Microsoft, and Apple. Earlier this year, a reporter in California received an e-mail full of expletives, purportedly from Guardino. It came instead from an impostor.

"I didn't want to be a victim," Guardino said in an interview. "I didn't want to be cyberbullied. But under the current law, impersonation isn't against the law."

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Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s
09/10/2010
Alameda Times-Star

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

Copyright © 2010 Alameda Times-Star. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s
09/10/2010
Argus, The

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

Copyright © 2010 The Argus. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s | View Clip
09/10/2010
Contra Costa Times - Online

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and

psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

Return to Top



Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s
09/10/2010
Daily Review, The

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

Copyright © 2010 The Daily Review. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s | View Clip
09/10/2010
InsideBayArea.com

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and

psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse: As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job: A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal: "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

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Flight 93 memorial: 'Is this all there is?' | View Clip
09/10/2010
MSNBC.com

Deborah Borza, mother of Flight 93 victim / Union-Tribune via ZUMA Press

On Sept. 11, 2001, passengers on United Flight 93 engaged in perhaps the most heroic act of our generation, fighting back against terrorists who had hijacked their plane. Today, the spot in Shanksville, Pa., where the plane slammed into the earth remains a largely unrecognizable patch of dirt.

On Saturday, the ninth anniversary of the attack, the place will be dressed up for visiting dignitaries, scheduled to include Michelle Obama and Laura Bush. Soon after, though, the field will be back to normal -- a barely active construction site.

And yet, a woman who would have every right to be angriest about the delays -- the mother of the youngest victim on Flight 93 -- recently showed me the best kind of patience, and a heroic grasp of a concept in short supply during our troubled times: perspective.

I visited Shanksville this summer on a detour during my “Hidden Fee Tour,” drawn -- as nearly 1 million Americans have been since 2001 -- by stories of the doomed passengers' bravery. 

Shanksville couldn't be any more different from lower Manhattan.  Set about 20 miles off the Pennsylvania Turnpike, its rolling hills are barely disturbed by occasional twisting, empty two-lane roads.  It's quieter than any church I've been in.  As you approach Shanksville, you wonder what the roar of a 757 about to crash must have done to this quiet place.

Finding the crash site is surprisingly tricky.  Signs leading drivers to the place are tacked onto stop signs and light poles, with all the permanence of "garage sale" posters you might spot on a Saturday morning. The road up to the temporary memorial is unpaved but passable.  It leads to an old barn that was commandeered by the FBI to conduct its investigation. The makeshift structure now houses placards that tell the Flight 93 story, as well as some artifacts.

The main attraction is the abandoned mine field below, where the plane slammed upside down at about 500 mph. When I was there, a fence separated visitors from the point of impact. A couple of earth movers, part-way through efforts to level the ground, stood silent. Given the size of the place -- the memorial grounds ultimately will cover 1,500 acres -- the trucks seemed dwarfed by their task. 

A volunteer, standing at the fence, showed visitors an artist's rendition of the planned permanent memorial, flipping pages in a notebook protected from the elements by laminate.

"This is our tribute to these heroes?" I thought.

The rest of the story will probably sound familiar to you, even if the details are not.  While Congress passed a law authorizing creation of a memorial a year after 9/11, the National Park Service and the Families of Flight 93 spent the better part of the next nine years working to acquire the the crash site for the memorial. The process did not go smoothly. At one point, the park service had to move the temporary memorial when a mining company that owned the land where it had been erected tried to solicit donations from visitors.  After years of bickering, the federal government threatened to use eminent domain to take the land in 2008, which finally persuaded several local coal companies to sell. In the meantime, the park service and the coal companies argued over who would clean up the manganese left over from prior mining activities.  After the design for the memorial was chosen in 2005, protestors -- led by a family member of a Flight 93 victim -- complained that the plans include hidden pro-Islamic messages. Work on the memorial finally began in 2009, but stopped almost immediately when a New Jersey construction company challenged the bidding process.

Denise Custer, who grew up near the crash site and now lives in nearby Lambertsville, told me that the locals are sick of hearing all the talk about the memorial -- and they are saddened by how little has been done. Still, when relatives come to visit, they all want to go.

"In May, I took my sister who was here visiting from Florida, and she said, ‘Is this all there is?'” said Custer, 58.

At a press conference last week in Pennsylvania to announce new fund-raising efforts, David Beamer said much the same thing, albeit with more diplomatic flair.  Beamer is the father of Todd Beamer, who famously led the charge against the terrorists with the call, "Let's roll."

"We're very pleased with the progress," Beamer said, "But I must tell you it has been nine years. The 40 folks on that plane that day did what they had to do in about 30 minutes. ... I must also say I'm a tad disappointed that it's not already done."

'An amazing process'
When I tracked down Debby Borza, treasurer of the Families of Flight 93, I expected to hear exasperation, bitterness, even flat out anger.  Borza's daughter, Deora Bodley, was only 20 when she stepped onto Flight 93.  She was headed back to California to start her junior year at Santa Clara University. Slated to take a later flight, she arrived early at the airport that day so the friend who dropped her off could attend an early class. Fate gave her a stand-by seat on Flight 93.

Borza's expected anger, however, was absent.  Instead, when talking of the memorial, her voice sounds like the gentle breezes that blow almost continuously through Shanksville.

Deora Bodley/DBPT.org

"We're on target for next year," she said, referring to the park service's plans to have the first section of the memorial ready for a formal dedication on the 10th anniversary. "There's a lot of people who are dedicated, people willing to go above and beyond. It's really just a labor of love. … It's been an amazing process, and it is really something that what will be there next year will be an amazing place for visitors to come to."

Borza spent our first fifteen minutes talking by thanking seemingly everyone she could think of.

"The state of Pennsylvania has been so generous. It's because of them that visitors who take Route 30  can access the site," she said. "The families are always grateful when we see dignitaries like Laura Bush and Michelle Obama. We are always thankful that they come."

But what about the lack of obvious progress on the memorial site?

"The design is mostly a landscape memorial," she replied.  "It's not a typical memorial with buildings and monuments, lots of markers, so you wouldn't see the normal construction signs."  Borza then lovingly described what's to come: A wall that tracks the descent of the plane. A walkway to what's now called the "Sacred Ground," the impact area where the remains of the passengers were scattered on impact. 

"And the rest is just open area for people to just walk through, sit down and reflect," she said.  "A nice place to honor the heroes."

'40 percent complete'
Joanne Hanley, superintendent of national parks in Western Pennsylvania, also said the memorial project construction is proceeding according to schedule. 

“We're 40 percent complete,” she said. Also to be finished by next year: A 2.5-mile entrance road, and a parking area for the Sacred Ground. A second phase of the project, which includes a visitor's center and an education center, is targeted for completion by 2014, she said.

View of the construction on Sept. 6 / Flight 93 National Memorial Campaign

Still, after a nine-year process, Borza understands there are complaints and frustrations, and of course she feels them. Deora was close with her grandparents - Borza's parents. While her mom has passed away, she hopes her father will live to see completion of the memorial.

"Deora used to fly from California to North Carolina every summer to see (her grandparents),” she said. “It's important to him."

But complaints don't do her -- or her daughter's memory -- any good. On the other hand, being "gracious" helps keep her moving in the right direction.

"I have my moments,” Borza said. “I just share those moments with my family or close friends. But I know that from the moment I wake up in morning until I go to sleep every night, it's not going to make a bit of difference to anybody how my identity feels about this. When I'm gracious about it, it provides a different point of view other than the same old thing."

The "same old thing" is the negativity and complaints that so often trivialize all that's happened. "(Complaining) doesn't get you anywhere. I run into a lot of visitors who are really upset and angry. But if I'm going to spend time on anything, I spend it on filling up that empty void I have instead of having more hatred or anger," she said.

And for perspective, she notes  that 10 years is actually not a long time for planning and construction of state memorials.

"They are still working on the MLK Memorial," she said. "Look at how long the World War II Memorial took."

Indeed, on the other side of Pennsylvania from Shanksville is perhaps the most important battlefield of America's 19th century -- Gettysburg. Its largest monument -- devoted to the soldiers from Pennsylvania who fought there -- was dedicated on the 50th Anniversary of the battle.

This weekend, memorial design protesters have taken out advertisements in local newspapers, still hoping to draw attention to their complaints. Their presence will no doubt be felt at local ceremonies, which include a motorcycle rally this week which begins at a nearby chapel christened the Flight 93 Memorial Chapel.

'Your job isn't finished'
On Saturday, Borza will be standing aside the two first ladies, but she spends most days now with her father in North Carolina -- and she keeps up with her daughter's friends. Their lives are a more important memorial to Deora, anyway, she said.

"So many of them changed their majors to things like social work, headed for jobs that could help people,” she said. “They woke up that day and life took on a different meaning for them.  Business degrees, where it was easy to make a little money, didn't seem to make a lot of sense any more. A lot of them do nonprofit work now." She also hears occasionally from workers at the U.S. Capital building and White House, the suspected targets of the Flight 93 hijackers. They regularly thank Flight 93 families for potentially saving their lives, she said.

"All I have to say to them is, 'Your job isn't finished yet. Go find something you love doing and play hard.'”

 The Flight 93 Memorial, estimated to cost $58 million, is being built through a combination of private and government funds. While funding for phase one is complete, Hanley said another $15 million is needed to begin work on phase two.  Donations are accepted at HonorFlight93.org .

Recently, a Web cam was installed so Internet users can keep track of progress at the construction site. It can be viewed at

http://www.honorflight93.org/memorial/construction/?fa=live-webcam

A Facebook fan page includes updates and updated photographs of the site.

Tweet

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Financial security seems far away for Americans in 50s
09/10/2010
Oakland Tribune

In this bloody free-for-all of a recession, Americans in their 50s are really taking it hard on the chin.

Their 401(k)s have been cut down to 201(k)s. Their pensions have been frozen, or worse. Their home equity has evaporated just as their kids' college bills come due. And while younger workers may have been hit harder by unemployment, 50-something Americans who get laid off are stuck in jobless limbo longer than any other age group.

"It's a real mess," says Linda Kahn, a 51-year-old San Jose graphic designer who lost her job in early 2009 and recently took a part-time gig at Target "because I was going insane just hanging around the house. On my block alone, three of us in our 50s are out of work. One woman's dipping into her savings to live. Our houses are worth less than we paid for them. And the two interviews I had went nowhere."

"Is it because we're in our 50s?'' Kahn wonders. "What else could it be? Someone on the other end is looking at our résumés, doing the math and thinking, this woman's a fuddy-duddy. I feel like we've been put out to pasture. It's like we're reaching retirement age, but we're not ready for retirement."

It is a demographic squeeze play of historic proportion, with a jobless rate not seen since the Great Depression. Many 50-somethings are having to not just "reinvent" themselves after a late-in-life job loss, but also must "recalibrate" their expectations, says Santa Clara University professor and psychologist Tom Plante.

"If you lose your job in your 30s or 40s, you have the opportunity to correct the error over time," Plante says. "Folks in their 50s don't have that much wiggle room. Plus there's this sense of embarrassment and shame. Patients I see are suffering in silence. It's as if the rug has been pulled out from these people at a highly vulnerable time in their lives."

Peek inside this statistical slaughterhouse As older Americans headed for retirement, the recession cut into their plans, sending retirement account balances down 32 percent from a peak of $8.7 trillion in September 2007 to $5.9 trillion in March 2009, according to AARP. As the recession kicked in, more than one of every four foreclosures and delinquencies involved Americans age 50 and older, this on top of the decade's already sharp increase in bankruptcy filings for the 55-and-above set.

Not every 50-something, of course, is in the same predicament. San Bruno marketing director Ron LaPedis, 54, credits his wife with not letting the family go overboard into debt like so many of their peers did. "During the boom times," he says, "I was scrimping and saving. My wife beat it into my head to live within my means, and it's paid off."

His home equity is still intact, and he kept much of his savings in cash, gold and coins, "so I lost maybe only 10 percent of my investments." Yet he did lose his job at one point, and recalls how during his 18-month job search he "was getting nowhere, submitting résumés into a black hole. Was there an age bias? Yeah. I had people tell me things like, 'Wow, you have a lot of energy for your -- ,' and they'd sort of stop midsentence."

The jobs picture isn't getting any prettier for older workers, whose unemployment rate nationally has jumped sharply through the recession, hitting 7.1 percent in February, just shy of the historic high of 7.2 percent in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This economic malaise is proving nearly twice as nasty for them as the one in 2001, with their unemployment rate rising 58 percent in the first year of this downturn.

Some may never find another job A Pew Economic Policy Group report in April said nearly 30 percent of jobless people 55 or older have been out of work for a year or longer, a higher rate than any other age group.

At 51, Joy Bayler of Saratoga is not quite at that age yet, but she already knows the dark side of lingering unemployment. Her recent work history sounds brutal "I lost my corporate job in 2006," she says, "took my stock and started my own business, but that started going downhill; started working a temp job, but lost that in 2008; was unemployed until February 2009, then another temp job; then out of work from May 2009 to February of this year with another temp job, but no benefits."

Now, after going through her 401(k), "we're doing what we can to stay afloat. But unless we can get funding from a relative, we're about to lose our home."

In a sign of the angst gripping many who see their retirement fading into the future, a poll this year of people ages 44 to 75 found that more than three in five fear depleting their assets more than they fear dying.

"People close to retirement who'd normally have a lot of equity in their homes are either underwater or at least have less of a nest egg," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "And these are the people who looked reasonably good to begin with. For those who didn't, things are even worse."

Another factor pressuring older Americans looking for a job or clinging by their fingernails to the one they've got is more competition as labor-force participation among peers continues an upward 15-year trend. That, experts say, has been fueled in part by the demise of traditional pension plans. Throw in the stock market's whiplash and the need to work longer to replenish lost savings and it's no surprise that Pleasanton career coach Randy Hlavin has been seeing so many clients "desperate for some guidance."

"Typically," he says, "they've been downsized out of a job or else put into another position with more responsibility for less pay, and that puts even more stress on their lives, financially and emotionally."

Last year, Santa Cruz technical writer Simone Cox spent nearly eight months job hunting before she found work. In the meantime, she's seen her three-bedroom townhouse appraise below the price she paid for it six years ago, and watched her health care costs climb as she's required to pay more of her share than in previous jobs. And her 401(k)? "It's down a lot," Cox says. "When I look at my statement, I see more minuses than plus marks."

Cox, who turns 54 this month, is not alone. According to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study, the net worth of median households in the 45-to-54 age bracket dropped by more than 45 percent from 2004 to 2009. The same study projected that nearly one in three of these so-called "late baby boomers" will need to bring cash to a closing to cover outstanding mortgage and transaction costs if they were to sell their homes.

Job is a 'lifeline'

That group won't include Cox, who figures she can't afford to sell her house in today's market -- or quit her new job, which she considers a "lifeline to health care for me."

Like many of her fellow 79 million baby boomers, Cox is coming to a sobering realization.

"Retirement is fading further out," she says. "Now I'm thinking I can't stop until I'm well into my 60s. But we're all so understaffed and overstressed, can you really keep up that pace that long? Frankly, I don't know. For now, I just try and put it out of my head."

Contact Patrick May at 408-920-5689.

Copyright © 2010 The Oakland Tribune. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Jesuit college fair makes stop in south OC | View Clip
09/10/2010
Orange County Register Community Newspapers

RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA – A Jesuit college fair will make a stop in Orange County this weekend at Santa Margarita Catholic High School.

Jesuit colleges will set up booths in Moiso Pavilion from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday. The fair is free and open to the public. The Jesuit Excellence Tour includes 18 colleges from around the nation. Representatives from the following schools are expected to be at the fair to answer student and parent questions:

•Creighton University

•Fairfield University

•Gonzaga University

•College of the Holy Cross

•Loyola Marymount University

•Loyola University Chicago

•Loyola University Maryland

•Loyola University New Orleans

•Marquette University

•Regis University

•Saint Joseph's University

•Saint Louis University

•Saint Peter's College

•Santa Clara University

•Seattle University

•University of San Francisco

•University of Scranton

•Xavier University

The Jesuit Excellence Tour is making five other stops in California, including the areas of San Diego, Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento and San Francisco.

SMCHS is at 22062 Antonio Parkway. Visit smhs.org or call 949-766-6000 for more information.

Contact the writer: 949-454-7343 or kchu@ocregister.com

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Two sides coming together | View Clip
09/10/2010
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

Andrew Garrod

Cast members Belma Beglerovic, Harun Hasangic and Marko Matic perform 'Much Ado About Nothing' in . When San Francisco filmmaker Steve Nemsick got the call from Vermont producer Jane Applegate in June 2009 asking him to spend six weeks in documenting a Dartmouth professor's project directing a cast of young people from segregated ethnic groups in a Shakespeare play, he was intrigued.

There was just one problem: He didn't own a high-definition video camera, and Youth Bridge Global, the professor's nonprofit, which uses drama and art to connect youth across cultures, couldn't afford to rent him one.

But what Applegate didn't know when she phoned Nemsick, with whom she'd worked on a previous documentary, was that he is Croatian American. His parents loaned him the money to buy the camera, and 'three calls later,' he says, he was on his way to the Bosnian city of Mostar to shoot rehearsals for a bilingual 'Much Ado About Nothing' (80 percent Serbo-Croatian, 20 percent Shakespearean English).

The resulting documentary he wrote, directed and edited, 'Much Ado in Mostar,' was shot against a backdrop of bombed-out and bullet-ridden buildings left by the 1992-95 civil war in Bosnia that followed the breakup of the former Yugoslavia. It premieres Sept. 19 at the Napa Sonoma Wine Country Film Festival. 'The film is just terrific,' says festival director Stephen Ashton. 'The synergy of art and social conscience just hit the right notes for us - the connection between the Serbs and the Croats, and taking something as universal as Shakespeare and putting it through the filter of their own trauma, I thought that was exceptional.' The documentary is being released close to the 15th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Agreement in 1995, which led to the end of the war. 'It was surprising to see in the film that even after such a long time, the hostility and chauvinism persists,' says Ashton. 'Some of these kids weren't even born when the war was going on.' The cast includes actors ages 15 to 21. 'When someone watches a film like this, my hope is that it will touch them in a personal way and have them find how their personal prejudices lead them astray.' 'My parents were much more interested in this project than in my last documentary,' Nemsick, 39, says over coffee at Peet's in San Francisco's Ferry Building, referring to 2007's 'Pray For Me: The Jason Jesse Film,' about a Santa Cruz skateboarding pioneer. Edited and directed by Nemsick, it won awards at a handful of festivals and has just been rereleased with additional footage on DVD.

Nemsick grew up in New York and got his degree in communications and television at Santa Clara University. His dad is Croatian, born in Chicago and raised in a bilingual home there. His parents had spent a year and a half planning their first-ever trip to Croatia last summer, and 'they were amused that I beat them there by four weeks,' says Nemsick. His dad taught him some Serbo-Croatian phrases before he left - 'greetings, how to order cold beer, a couple of lines for girls, which I probably butchered' - and he found when he was there that some of the language he'd heard as a child came back to him.

Mostar is a 600-year-old city of 75,000 divided by the Neretva River. The east side is mainly Muslim Serbs, the west side Catholic Croats. Most of the actors in 'Much Ado' had never been to the other side of the river. The schools have segregated classrooms, and kids growing up a block apart can go their entire lives never speaking to one another.

So casting a play with members of all ethnic groups was a radical idea. Andrew Garrod, who retired in June as professor and chairman of the education department at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, since 1999 has been researching the effects of war on children, adolescents and college-age students. He founded Youth Bridge Global in 2004, and has done six annual youth Shakespeare productions in the Marshall Islands (photos of the cast in grass skirt costumes can be seen on the website www.ybglobal.org 'The first year, he had a Muslim Romeo who wouldn't talk to his Catholic Juliet if the cross she wore was showing, so she'd take care to cover it up - all the conflict a filmmaker could want,' says Nemsick. But last summer, the multiethnic cast got along amazingly well. 'Score one for humanity, but not so good for the filmmaker,' Nemsick jokes. So he focused on the challenges of producing the play in a record-breaking heat wave with mostly students who had never acted before, several of whom were distracted by studying for law boards and college entrance exams, which got in the way of learning their lines.

In onscreen interviews, the actors speak candidly about living with the legacy of war - in one poignant moment an actor recounts how his mother was hit by shrapnel in the street when she was going out for water - and how it feels to be working with neighbors they'd never imagined talking to. 'They were rehearsing on what was the front line of the war, so this play literally was two sides coming together,' Nemsick says. After the opening two nights in Mostar, the students went by bus to give performances in five other cities in Bosnia, Croatia, Republika Srpska and Montenegro.

Back in San Francisco, Nemsick created a 30-minute version to be shown at school screenings to raise funds for Youth Bridge Global programs and then went on to make the feature film.

He can't wait for the students in Mostar to see the film. But there is no movie theater in the city, so he's planning a premiere in Sarajevo. He says unlike the work he has done for corporate clients and television networks, it has been impossible for him to leave this one at work. 'This film is in my dreams.' Much Ado in Mostar: 6:30 p.m. Sept. 19. Napa Sonoma Wine Country Film Festival. Deerfield Ranch Winery, Grand Room of the Cave, 10200 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood. $10. (707) 935.3456. www.winecountryfilmfest.com

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New York Fashion Week with Swimwear Designer Michaela Cawley | VF Daily | Vanity Fair | View Clip
09/10/2010
VF Daily

This Fashion Week, all-American designer Michaela Cawley is debuting her luxury-swimwear line of bikinis and deck suits called KKINI. She recently sat with yours truly at the New York City gastro-pub Rabbit in the Moon, where we discussed, among other things, what it must be have been like serving as the personal aide-de-camp to style priestess Daphne Guinness.

George Wayne: Tell me about your arrival to New York. When did you become a New Yorker?

Michaela Cawley: I am from Omaha, Nebraska, of all places-right there in the middle of America. But I always grew up traveling. I went to college in the San Francisco Bay area, at Santa Clara University, and after that, I went to art school in Cape Town, South Africa. That was a great adventure, and from there I moved to London. My sister was the executive assistant to Tamara Mellon at the time, who, of course, created Jimmy Choo. We went to this black-tie event together in London.

And that's how you met Daphne Guinness.

That's how I met Daphne Guinness, a black-tie event for the London Opera. I met her and right away it was like, This is a woman I would love to work for. She is right up my alley. We had an instant connection and I went on to work for her for two and a half years. And I followed Daphne to New York, and now I have decided to chase my dream, as you said to me the first time I met you, and create my small business.

First tell me what was it like being the assistant to Daphne Guinness. You must know where all the bones are buried.

Daphne is an exotic, eccentric woman, and I look at her and I see myself. There was an instant, wonderful connection that we had, and palling around with her all over the world from London, New York, Los Angeles, Paris, all over-you couldn't ask for more practical research in fashion. And so yes, it was such a blessing, and yes, I do think highly of her.

G.W. calls Daphne Guinness the eccentric style priestess of fashion. And I am sure you have some of the best stories working for Daphne Guinness that you could never repeat. Working for her couldn't have been all a bed of roses, come on.

It really was for me, and I am really not kidding. I think you see in me that New York girl trying to chase her dream, and my dream is to grow my swimwear line KKINI. I am a go-to girl, and I want to get this done. And I am in love with what I am doing right now. I get out of bed and I wake up with a smile and I am so happy and excited about this. I really think that this is a calling for me and that there is a lot of room in this market for something new that is chic and very high fashion.

What makes you the next Rosa Cha? The all-American version of the last swimsuit phenomenon-is that what you aspire to?

I create high-end, on-trend swimwear. Working for Daphne afforded me the opportunity of visiting the ateliers of the world's leading fashion houses, and I feel swimwear is somewhere I could start and really make a difference. So I am kind of running with all this.

Did you do that fabulous Bikini Week Fashion Week every July in Miami Beach?

I attended this year, and I plan to show there next year. And my entire line is available not only at Sirene.com but at the Gansevoort Hotel in South Beach along with the Raleigh. And my KKINI line retails from $120 to $310.

Good luck and thank you.

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A passion for produce | View Clip
09/10/2010
WNOL-TV - Online

Organic, sustainable, local -- everyone talks the trendy talk, but some foodies are taking the locavore message to heart.

They're not only frequenting farmers markets, they're launching locavore supper clubs and recipe-rich blogs, and subscribing to CSAs -- small, local farms whose Community Supported Agriculture programs eliminate the middle man by delivering fresh veggies direct.

You can credit Michael Pollan and Barbara Kingsolver -- and the San Francisco Bay Area's wealth of fresh produce and small farms -- with the transformation.

'A lot of people are buying organic,' says San Jose, Calif., resident Carol Provenzano. 'We wanted to take it to the next step.'

Provenzano and her friends began subscribing to a farm CSA and hosting locavore dinners after reading Kingsolver's 'Animal, Vegetable, Miracle,' which recounts the novelist's yearlong effort to lead the life of a locavore, serving only food she'd raised herself or that came from growers and ranchers she trusted.

It was Pollan's 'Omnivore's Dilemma' that abruptly raised the consciousness of Christina Valencia and her best friend Jillian Abernathy, San Francisco twentysomethings who started researching local CSAs within days of finishing the best-seller.

'I didn't know anything about organic foods or pesticides,' Valencia says. 'It opened my eyes to a lot of things. I loved farmers markets, but it's Saturday mornings. I'm usually sleeping in! CSA was a great way to get local produce without hassle -- and support our local farmers.'

If strolling a farmers market is casual dating, joining a CSA is going steady. Instead of browsing and picking and choosing, you commit to pick up weekly or biweekly boxes of fresh-from-the-farm produce -- and in some cases chickens, eggs and herbs. But for every delightful heirloom tomato discovery, there comes a time when the box brims with something strange.

'You just get what you get, which is pretty fun,' says Provenzano, who picks up her CSA box at a drop-off spot on the Santa Clara University campus. 'Farmers are able to provide varieties of vegetables that have a shorter shelf life, so you're getting different tastes, and the stuff is very fresh. You think you know what a strawberry tastes like and then you taste these.'

Still, it can be startling. One of Provenzano's first CSA crates contained, apparently, weeds. They were edible greens, she knows now, but at the time, they bore an uncanny resemblance to the greenery she'd just weed-whacked in her backyard.

'It's definitely an adjustment,' says Valencia, whose produce came from Farm Fresh to You, a large CSA that delivers to homes and offices, rather than general drop-off spots. 'The first box I ever got, I threw most of it away because I didn't know what to do with it. Beets and beet greens -- I didn't know you can actually use those beet greens. But the more you explore, the more adventurous you are. You research it, and that's part of the fun. I just cooked for the first time with green garlic.'

Soon, Valencia and Abernathy were recounting those culinary adventures with tender broccolini and leafy kale on their Bay Area-based food blog, Farm and a Frying Pan. It struck such a chord, the blog has begun adding writers in Chicago, Denver and Southern California. And Valencia, who moved to New York City earlier this year to join the staff at Epicurious.com, has added a bicoastal element.

EXPANDING AWARENESS

CSAs and farmers markets are a wonderful way to buy your produce, but figuring out how to get the produce home and then what to do with all that bounty is an ongoing issue, says food writer Janet Fletcher. Her new book, 'Eating Local, The Cookbook Inspired by America's Farmers,' is a joint venture with Sur La Table. The cookware boutique's corporate headquarters in Seattle is a drop-off point for CSA boxes in a pilot program the company hopes may eventually expand.

The idea, Fletcher says, is 'to make it easier for people to buy local, support local farms and get fresh food on their own table.'

Part of that effort also lies in expanding, 'people's produce awareness,' says Fletcher. 'Get people thinking about trying and cooking some of the vegetables they may have shied away from in the past -- kale, tomatillos, rutabagas, things that turn up in those produce boxes.'

Meanwhile, Provenzano and her friends have moved beyond the CSA box. By fall 2009, what had begun with a book had become a passion.

'I was making cheese and yogurt, and canning tomatoes, and they were making jam and orange juice, and sharing with each other,' Provenzano says. 'We were trying not to use stuff outside the farmers market, our box and our backyard. And we thought, 'Let's see if we can do a dinner.''

LOCAVORE SUPPER CLUB

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Tickets for school officials raises questions | View Clip
09/09/2010
Arizona Republic - Online

A Valley school group doled out Phoenix Open skybox invitations to school officials across Arizona, raising questions about access to public employees and district policies that ban gifts.

Public documents obtained by The Republic show that Phoenix Open invitations were sent to such school officials as superintendents, school-facility managers and chief financial officers, including the Peoria and Deer Valley unified school districts. In all, Valley Schools Management Group had 200 tickets available to invite school and business leaders.

E-mails included in those documents show some officials asked for tickets to attend specific days and inquired whether family members could attend as well. It is not clear who or how many district leaders attended.

Peoria and Deer Valley districts each have policies that ban employees and board members from accepting gifts other than inexpensive or novelty items.

Gift policies:

The Valley Schools group, which manages insurance trusts and pools for more than 20 school districts, invited school and business leaders to watch the Waste Management Phoenix Open from a $47,500 16th Hole Terrace skybox.

Valley Schools officials called the golf event a networking and marketing opportunity to attract new members. They said it benefited school districts because it maintains positive relationships with insurance providers and vendors, including architecture firms and construction management companies.

Peoria and Deer Valley officials said invitations were unrelated to invitees' work with the district.

'The district does not make it a practice to inquire what employees are doing on their personal time,' said Danielle Airey, spokeswoman for the Peoria district.

Ethicists, however, said it's questionable.

'The public wants to be sure their public officials are making decisions based solely on the . . . qualifications of the vendor and not because they had primo seats at a golf tournament,' said Judy Nadler, an ethicist at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

Valley Schools networks

Valley Schools paid $18,000 for the Phoenix Open skybox. Five other businesses paid the remaining amount, and covered some additional tickets.

Valley Schools, for which Peoria and Deer Valley are members, was created to allow school districts to pool and purchase insurance and other services at lower costs. The organization has grown to include several trusts and pools for worker's compensation, employee benefits and insurance.

Each has its own board comprising school district administrators and board members. Some of the Phoenix Open invitees are school employees and board members on a Valley School trust. Valley Schools, in a statement, said to save districts money, it must sustain a large membership to negotiate lower rates for services. Marketing the organization through events such as the Phoenix Open is a way to attract school districts and help districts maintain relationships with their providers.

The Tempe-based Chasse Building Team, a construction management company, was one of the businesses that contributed to paying for the skybox at the golf tournament in February. Two months later, the Deer Valley school board approved the Chasse Building Team as the construction manager for summer maintenance projects. Deer Valley has a history with the contractor, who has completed many projects for the district.

Valley Schools sent an invitation to representatives from United Health Care, which is the health-care provider for employees of the Peoria district.

Policies and invitees

Peoria and Deer Valley have policies prohibiting employees and board members from accepting gifts other than inexpensive items. Neither policy details what monetary amount would be considered too expensive. The policy does not outline any specific discipline for violators but district officials said it follows general disciplinary guidelines.

A ticket for a seat in a skybox is $250, according to the price Valley Schools paid for a handful of additional individual skybox seats, documents show.

Jim Migliorino, associate superintendent for fiscal services, and Kent Davis, associate superintendent for educational services, for Deer Valley were invited by Valley Schools to attend the Phoenix Open.

Both said they did not attend. Public records show that they e-mailed Valley Schools asking for tickets to attend on a Friday.

'I was invited and I originally agreed to attend, but later I retracted my acceptance of the invitation,' Migliorino said.

Davis said he planned to attend but sent an e-mail to Valley Schools that he couldn't because he was too busy.

The Republic tried to contact several other school officials on the invitation list. They did not return calls or referred The Republic to the district spokesperson.

Jeff Long, facilities manager for Deer Valley, was invited to attend but phone calls and messages to him went unanswered. Migliorino, his supervisor, said he advised Long not to return calls to The Republic.

'If he did attend and requested leave for it, then that's his own personal business,' Migliorino said. 'I feel it's a private matter and has nothing to do with his capacity in working with the school district.'

Mike Maas,who is involved in construction projects as support services administrator for the Peoria district, was invited.

On Feb. 5, Maas sent an e-mail to Valley Schools that said, '2 for Sunday would be a great day for me or 2 for Saturday instead.' Maas did not return phone calls from The Republic. Another Peoria employee asked that media inquiries go through the district public-relations department.

Airey, the Peoria schools spokeswoman, said whether employees were invited to or attended the Phoenix Open is their personal business.

However, invitations to the Scottsdale tournament were sent to employees' district e-mails. And the guest list was clearly aimed at connecting school officials from around the state.

Public records show a document that appears to be a list of guests who were delivered tickets. However, Valley Schools chief executive Tom Boone, who is a member of the Deer Valley school board, could not clarify whether those people were given tickets. He said the document did not indicate who attended and he does not know the details of whether tickets were taken, given back or passed on to anyone else. Boone said they didn't keep sign-in sheets or otherwise document who attended.

Ethicists weigh in

Although Valley Schools officials said they were saving money for school districts, ethicists raised concerns about an uneven playing field for other potential vendors and businesses. Vendors not invited might also be competing for contracts within a school district.

David Berman, a senior research fellow at the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at Arizona State University, said there were potential conflicts of interest and partiality to certain businesses.

'It may not turn out all that bad for the district budget, but it gives the impression of unfair treatment to others in competition,' Berman said.

Nadler said the nature of the event raises red flags and that the golf tournament's exclusivity creates issues with access. Gifts are a common occurrence between companies doing business with one another, but gifts in the public sector are typically unacceptable because public officials are expected to make decisions without undue influence, whether real or perceived, Nadler said.

If a school district wants to have a good relationship with a vendor, invite them to a staff meeting or a board meeting, she said.

'Saying that going to a golf tournament and sitting in a box is a way of having good relationships sounds like a real inside kind of situation,' Nadler said. 'It sets something up that's not particularly fair and creates questions.'

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Baltimore Business Journal - Online

Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

Do you think EA should have released a game that lets users play as Taliban fighters?

OK by me. It's only a game.

Sure. But with an 18 and over age limit.

No way.

Other (please comment).

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Business Journal Serving Greater Milwaukee - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Business Review - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Stop the Presses: Will Copyright Suits Save Newspapers? | View Clip
09/09/2010
Connecticut Law Tribune

Attorney Steve Gibson, the CEO of controversial copyright holding company Righthaven LLC, defended his business model yesterday in a panel discussion held via telephone titled 'Can large-scale copyright enforcement save the newspaper business?' The other panelists were Santa Clara University Law Professor Eric Goldman and Barbara Wall, an in-house attorney with newspaper chain Gannett Co., Inc.

Gibson formed Righthaven earlier this year and since then has engaged in a copyright-litigation campaign without precedent in the newspaper industry. Asserting copyrights acquired mostly from the Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper, Righthaven has taken an aggressive litigation-first approach to enforcement, suing more than 100 websites that republished R-J content without permission. Defendants have included political commentary and activist websites across the ideological spectrum. For instance, Righthaven recently sued Sharron Angle, a Nevada Republican running for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by Majority Leader Harry Reid. Other recent targets have included the U.S. Marijuana party and university professors.

Although the litigation campaign is in an early stage, Righthaven has withstood two motions to dismiss from defendants in federal court. Gibson says about 30 percent of the defendants he has sued have already settled up with the

•Cutting & Pasting Newspaper articles—Does it Hurt or Help Readership?

During the discussion, Goldman pointed out that there isn't much evidence that reproduced newspaper content is 'cannibalizing' the readership of the affected publications. In fact, Goldman said, by spreading newspaper content to other websites, the sites that Gibson condemns as infringers may actually be boosting overall readership, especially when they link back to the original content.

In those situations, '[readers] weren't even aware something was worth taking a look at until someone brought it to their attention... even if it's 100 percent substitutable from a content standpoint, it still might increase overall readership.'

Links back to the original story also increase the value of that content because search engines count and rank links as part of their algorithms, Goldman noted. Thus, if newspaper content spreads to a number of sites that link back to the original, search engines such as Google and Yahoo will rank the original content—not the unauthorized copies—higher in the results they return.

Gibson focused his argument on content companies' right to control their content. 'From a purely academic perspective that might be true,' he said. 'But I would suspect that Gannett doesn't need a bunch of unauthorized resellers of its content to conduct its business model. Most people that own content want to be able to control that content's viewership.'

Newspaper companies should be able to control their own interactions with search engines, Gibson continued. 'Does Gannett or the Tribune Company want to be in a position where they can manage search engine optimization, or are they willing to relegate that to a chaotic process, a wide array of unauthorized reproducers?' he asked. 'You have presented no empirical data that viewership by content owners is enhanced by that chaotic approach.'

Wall, an attorney with Gannett Co., said that search engines like Google do in fact drive viewers to newspaper websites. And the fact newspaper sites generally choose to allow Google's bots to index their pages 'suggests that there's some benefit to the exposure their stories get through Google and other search engines.' She didn't give any indication about whether Gannett would consider pursuing a Righthaven-style strategy.

But those online readers don't add enough to newspapers' bottom line to help the publications over the long term, because 'the price for advertising on the web has steadily been driven down,' said Wall. 'Is mere [web] traffic enough to sustain the journalism? No, not at this point.'

While most of the Righthaven lawsuits involve websites that have reposted entire articles, a few involve shorter excerpts. During the discussion Gibson emphasized that of recent copyright suits filed, 'only two or three' involve incidents where less than 100 percent of an article's content was copied.

•Is 'Sue First' the Right Strategy for Newspapers?

Later in the discussion, Goldman questioned whether using a copyright holding company with a 'sue first' strategy is the best way for newspapers to exercise control, even if that is their top priority.

'If in fact the newspapers want to exercise control, they could reach out—editors could contact [online infringers],' said Goldman. 'It seems like there's a whole bunch of other ways other than a sue first approach.'

Las Vegas Sun reporter Steve Green, who has covered the Righthaven lawsuits extensively, recently wrote an article describing his own newspaper's more diplomatic approach to copyright infringement.

'We've dealt with this by attempting to convert infringers into allies,' Green wrote in a September 1 story. 'Instead of suing them without warning, we ask that they take down our material and replace it with a link and at most a paragraph or two from the story. Such links drive traffic to our site, which is a good thing, especially for our advertisers.'

Gibson discounted the idea that less aggressive methods, like sending takedown notices, could be as effective as suing. 'It hasn't been very effective to date,' he said. 'Infringements continue to grow by the minute... this idea of employing thousands of people to send out millions of takedown notices is wrong.'

Goldman countered by pointing out that the Recording Industry Association of America's campaign of lawsuits against music downloaders doesn't seem to have accomplished much. 'They were... suing some of the people who were their most loyal customers, most engaged with the music,' said Goldman. 'In the newspaper business, a lot of people reposting articles are the newspaper's most loyal customers—not someone trying to make a profit off someone else's copyrighted work.'

But in a world where sharing links with friends that point to online news sources is part of many people's everyday discussion of the news, Gibson said, newspapers could greatly benefit if every one of those links went to the original source.

And Righthaven's plan for capitalizing on the copyrights it controls don't just involve filing lawsuits, he added: 'I don't want Righthaven to be seen as a company focused on finding infringements and filing lawsuits. Our business model is centered on the ultimate transition in the marketplace, that focuses on monetizing content.'

'We want to see great journalism, and certainly want our journalists to be compensated for it,' said moderator Jonathan Pink, a partner at Bryan Cave. 'Other than an infringement action, are there other ways of accomplishing this?'

Goldman suggested that newspapers do have other revenue options beyond heavy-handed copyright enforcement, and have always drawn most of their revenue from advertisers, in any case, although he acknowledged 'it's hard to get enough money from advertising to do all the things they'd like to do.'

'Newspapers have been in the business of being the central information repository for their communities, and that's not easily replicated by third-party publishers, licensed or infringing,' Goldman said. 'If there's a way to solve a community's needs, there's a variety of ways to merchandise that value. Newspapers could be a community hub, just like they were back in the good old days.'

'You see that many other industries have struggled with rampant infringement, and many other models have failed,' said Gibson. 'They've failed because they haven't come to grips with the statutory damage provisions of the Copyright Act [which allow for damages up to $150,000 per infringement] and put those into force. Ultimately, years from now, it will be judged whether the Righthaven approach is superior... I think right now, Righthaven is the best solution out there.'

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Dayton Business Journal - Online

Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Odd studies offer fresh challenges | View Clip
09/09/2010
Journal Gazette - Online Bureau, The

Puzzles among area college classes

Jaclyn Youhana | The Journal Gazette

Puzzles, Strategy Games and Scientific Problem Solving is a course offered by IPFW.

It looks like a science classroom with electric sockets hanging from the ceiling, computer stations set up at every table, uncomfortable lab stools.

But all those tools are left unused (well, except for those sorry excuses for chairs) as students pore over the problem at hand. It's a solitary version of Battleship, which ends up looking a little like a Sudoku game.

There's a 10-by-10 grid, and students have a variety of ships to place on the game board. They stay within set parameters – this row can have only four spaces blocked off, that column can have only one, etc.

It's a puzzle, a strategy game – something folks do for fun at breakfast or on a long car ride. And these students are getting college credit for it.

Puzzles, Strategy Games and Scientific Problem Solving is one of a handful of quirky and unusual courses offered by local universities and colleges that provide credit toward graduation.

Local colleges are certainly not alone in these kinds of offerings. The Joy of Garbage is offered at Santa Clara University in California. Columbia College in Chicago offers Zombies in Popular Media. Students at Kent State University in Ohio can take Geography of Wine.

That's not to call such classes common, however. Faculty members are traditionally reluctant to change, says IPFW physics professor Dave Malone, who teaches the puzzles and game class. This makes courses like his pretty unusual.

The courses aren't always around for a long time; however, when they are, they tend to be popular among students.

“All the other courses I teach are pretty much required courses for various majors,” Malone says. “It's nice to have a course where the students aren't in there under such strong duress.

“I think probably most faculty who would do a course like this, there's some direct connection to their research or to some interest that they have, and this gives them a chance to explore it further and get reaction from students about ideas and approaches.”

His puzzles and game course is what's called an Area VI general education class. These kind of general education courses ensure well-rounded students by getting them to take classes that might not necessarily fit in their major, officials say.

“In one sense, I think (students) come in, and their expectations are reasonable because they are going to engage into solving puzzles and playing games,” Malone says.

“However, what they really don't expect is the level of challenge in the course. I am a pretty demanding instructor, and the reasoning that they have to go through (to complete the puzzles) and the metacognition (thinking about thinking) – the effort to explain what they are doing and why they are trying that – is a significant challenge.

“It's a common experience for me to go to graduation and have students who have been in puzzles say that was the toughest course they have at IPFW. I'm actually old enough and ornery enough to be perfectly happy with that.”

Senior Andy Senter took the class for two reasons: he plays strategy games anyway, he says, and he needed an upper-level class.

“For the most part, it's what I'd hoped,” says Senter, 30. “I think it's more fun than difficult.”

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Odd studies offer fresh challenges Puzzles among area college classes
09/09/2010
Journal Gazette, The

It looks like a science classroom with electric sockets hanging from the ceiling, computer stations set up at every table, uncomfortable lab stools.

But all those tools are left unused (well, except for those sorry excuses for chairs) as students pore over the problem at hand. It's a solitary version of Battleship, which ends up looking a little like a Sudoku game.

There's a 10-by-10 grid, and students have a variety of ships to place on the game board. They stay within set parameters - this row can have only four spaces blocked off, that column can have only one, etc.

It's a puzzle, a strategy game - something folks do for fun at breakfast or on a long car ride. And these students are getting college credit for it.

Puzzles, Strategy Games and Scientific Problem Solving is one of a handful of quirky and unusual courses offered by local universities and colleges that provide credit toward graduation.

Local colleges are certainly not alone in these kinds of offerings. The Joy of Garbage is offered at Santa Clara University in California. Columbia College in Chicago offers Zombies in Popular Media. Students at Kent State University in Ohio can take Geography of Wine.

That's not to call such classes common, however. Faculty members are traditionally reluctant to change, says IPFW physics professor Dave Malone, who teaches the puzzles and game class. This makes courses like his pretty unusual.

The courses aren't always around for a long time; however, when they are, they tend to be popular among students.

"All the other courses I teach are pretty much required courses for various majors," Malone says. "It's nice to have a course where the students aren't in there under such strong duress.

"I think probably most faculty who would do a course like this, there's some direct connection to their research or to some interest that they have, and this gives them a chance to explore it further and get reaction from students about ideas and approaches."

His puzzles and game course is what's called an Area VI general education class. These kind of general education courses ensure well-rounded students by getting them to take classes that might not necessarily fit in their major, officials say.

"In one sense, I think (students) come in, and their expectations are reasonable because they are going to engage into solving puzzles and playing games," Malone says.

"However, what they really don't expect is the level of challenge in the course. I am a pretty demanding instructor, and the reasoning that they have to go through (to complete the puzzles) and the metacognition (thinking about thinking) - the effort to explain what they are doing and why they are trying that - is a significant challenge.

"It's a common experience for me to go to graduation and have students who have been in puzzles say that was the toughest course they have at IPFW. I'm actually old enough and ornery enough to be perfectly happy with that."

Senior Andy Senter took the class for two reasons he plays strategy games anyway, he says, and he needed an upper-level class.

"For the most part, it's what I'd hoped," says Senter, 30. "I think it's more fun than difficult."

How to get promoted

When students see the title of the course, Entrepreneurial Thinking, they assume it is a business class, one that will teach them how to be an entrepreneur. That's not it at all.

"I think one of the reactions is, `What the hell am I doing here? I thought I was going to learn how to start a business,' " says Jim Falkiner, who teaches the course at Manchester College in North Manchester.

Instead, Falkiner's course teaches students how to problem-solve in a business setting and how to display those solutions to the person in charge.

When the course started four years ago, it was all business students; today, the course is what Falkiner envisioned when he started teaching it - psychology students seated next to art students seated next to physics students.

The skills taught are applicable in any discipline, and Falkiner has proof that they work.

He recently e-mailed a student to congratulate him on a promotion directly related to something he learned in Entrepreneurial Thinking.

"A supervisor will have an employee say, `That process doesn't work,' " he says. " `What should we do?' The most common answer is `I don't know. You're the boss. Fix it.' "

With Falkiner's method, "When asked what to do, they say, `I'm glad you mentioned that,' " he says.

The process involves coming up with a solution to fix the problem at hand, the costs it will require, a team to work with, a timeline it will take and more.

Falkiner's previous student did this and was promoted to marketing director for a rental car company.

Rock of ages

It's one of the most popular courses at IPFW, its instructor says. Students tell one another about it, and then, when it's more involved than they expected, they're glad.

Social History of Rock and Roll looks at rock 'n' roll from 1950 through 1980 and how America's growth helped shaped the genre's development, says John Minton, an anthropology professor who created the course 10 years ago.

As American society made the change from being a small, agricultural-based community to an urban one, music, too, has changed, Minton says.

"(Music is) a barometer of American society," he says. "You can see how America made the transition from a folk society to the modern, urban world where `American Idol' is the No. 1 show. We want to all be pop stars now."

The course is considered general education, in the folklore program in the English department. Casses fill up quickly - he's teaching two this semester, and both are full at 40 students - even though the curriculum isn't what many students expect; it's not a course on big stars and celebrities.

"It's not a scandal-sheet approach to rock 'n' roll," Minton says. "(Students are) kind of surprised by that, but they seem to actually like that it's a little deeper than what they're expecting."

jyouhana@jg.net

Copyright © 2010 ProQuest Information and Learning Company; All Rights Reserved.

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Kansas City Business Journal - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Santa Clara University Program Encourages Entrepreneurs | View Clip
09/09/2010
KTVU-TV

Santa Clara University's California Program for Entrepreneurs (CAPE) is featured on KTVU Channel 2 news program, as one possible remedy for California's unemployment and economic problems.

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MILPITAS: Santa Clara University Program Encourages Entrepreneurs | View Clip
09/09/2010
KTVU-TV - Online

Maureen Naylor reporting

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Stop the Presses: Will Copyright Suits Save Newspapers? | View Clip
09/09/2010
Law.com

Steve Gibson

Eric Goldman Attorney Steve Gibson, the CEO of controversial copyright holding company Righthaven LLC, defended his business model yesterday in a panel discussion held via telephone titled 'Can large-scale copyright enforcement save the newspaper business?' The other panelists were Santa Clara University Law Professor Eric Goldman and Barbara Wall, an in-house attorney with newspaper chain Gannett Co., Inc. Gibson formed Righthaven earlier this year and since then has engaged in a copyright-litigation campaign without precedent in the newspaper industry. Asserting copyrights acquired mostly from the Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper, Righthaven has taken an aggressive litigation-first approach to enforcement, suing more than 100 websites that republished R-J content without permission. Defendants have included political commentary and activist websites across the ideological spectrum. For instance, Righthaven recently sued Sharron Angle, a Nevada Republican running for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by Majority Leader Harry Reid. Other recent targets have included the U.S. Marijuana party and university professors. Although the litigation campaign is in an early stage, Righthaven has withstood two motions to dismiss from defendants in federal court. Gibson says about 30 percent of the defendants he has sued have already settled up with the Cutting & Pasting Newspaper articlesDoes it Hurt or Help Readership? During the discussion, Goldman pointed out that there isn't much evidence that reproduced newspaper content is 'cannibalizing' the readership of the affected publications. In fact, Goldman said, by spreading newspaper content to other websites, the sites that Gibson condemns as infringers may actually be boosting overall readership, especially when they link back to the original content. In those situations, '[readers] weren't even aware something was worth taking a look at until someone brought it to their attention... even if it's 100 percent substitutable from a content standpoint, it still might increase overall readership.' Links back to the original story also increase the value of that content because search engines count and rank links as part of their algorithms, Goldman noted. Thus, if newspaper content spreads to a number of sites that link back to the original, search engines such as Google and Yahoo will rank the original contentnot the unauthorized copieshigher in the results they return. Gibson focused his argument on content companies' right to control their content. 'From a purely academic perspective that might be true,' he said. 'But I would suspect that Gannett doesn't need a bunch of unauthorized resellers of its content to conduct its business model. Most people that own content want to be able to control that content's viewership.' Newspaper companies should be able to control their own interactions with search engines, Gibson continued. 'Does Gannett or the Tribune Company want to be in a position where they can manage search engine optimization, or are they willing to relegate that to a chaotic process, a wide array of unauthorized reproducers?' he asked. 'You have presented no empirical data that viewership by content owners is enhanced by that chaotic approach.' Wall, an attorney with Gannett Co., said that search engines like Google do in fact drive viewers to newspaper websites. And the fact newspaper sites generally choose to allow Google's bots to index their pages 'suggests that there's some benefit to the exposure their stories get through Google and other search engines.' She didn't give any indication about whether Gannett would consider pursuing a Righthaven-style strategy. But those online readers don't add enough to newspapers' bottom line to help the publications over the long term, because 'the price for advertising on the web has steadily been driven down,' said Wall. 'Is mere [web] traffic enough to sustain the journalism? No, not at this point.' While most of the Righthaven lawsuits involve websites that have reposted entire articles, a few involve shorter excerpts. During the discussion Gibson emphasized that of recent copyright suits filed, 'only two or three' involve incidents where less than 100 percent of an article's content was copied. Is 'Sue First' the Right Strategy for Newspapers? Later in the discussion, Goldman questioned whether using a copyright holding company with a 'sue first' strategy is the best way for newspapers to exercise control, even if that is their top priority. 'If in fact the newspapers want to exercise control, they could reach outeditors could contact [online infringers],' said Goldman. 'It seems like there's a whole bunch of other ways other than a sue first approach.'Las Vegas Sun reporter Steve Green, who has covered the Righthaven lawsuits extensively, recently wrote an article describing his own newspaper's more diplomatic approach to copyright infringement. 'Weve dealt with this by attempting to convert infringers into allies,' Green wrote in a September 1 story. 'Instead of suing them without warning, we ask that they take down our material and replace it with a link and at most a paragraph or two from the story. Such links drive traffic to our site, which is a good thing, especially for our advertisers.' Gibson discounted the idea that less aggressive methods, like sending takedown notices, could be as effective as suing. 'It hasn't been very effective to date,' he said. 'Infringements continue to grow by the minute... this idea of employing thousands of people to send out millions of takedown notices is wrong.'Goldman countered by pointing out that the Recording Industry Association of America's campaign of lawsuits against music downloaders doesn't seem to have accomplished much. 'They were... suing some of the people who were their most loyal customers, most engaged with the music,' said Goldman. 'In the newspaper business, a lot of people reposting articles are the newspaper's most loyal customersnot someone trying to make a profit off someone else's copyrighted work.' But in a world where sharing links with friends that point to online news sources is part of many people's everyday discussion of the news, Gibson said, newspapers could greatly benefit if every one of those links went to the original source. And Righthaven's plan for capitalizing on the copyrights it controls don't just involve filing lawsuits, he added: 'I don't want Righthaven to be seen as a company focused on finding infringements and filing lawsuits. Our business model is centered on the ultimate transition in the marketplace, that focuses on monetizing content.' 'We want to see great journalism, and certainly want our journalists to be compensated for it,' said moderator Jonathan Pink, a partner at Bryan Cave. 'Other than an infringement action, are there other ways of accomplishing this?' Goldman suggested that newspapers do have other revenue options beyond heavy-handed copyright enforcement, and have always drawn most of their revenue from advertisers, in any case, although he acknowledged 'it's hard to get enough money from advertising to do all the things they'd like to do.' 'Newspapers have been in the business of being the central information repository for their communities, and that's not easily replicated by third-party publishers, licensed or infringing,' Goldman said. 'If there's a way to solve a community's needs, there's a variety of ways to merchandise that value. Newspapers could be a community hub, just like they were back in the good old days.' 'You see that many other industries have struggled with rampant infringement, and many other models have failed,' said Gibson. 'They've failed because they haven't come to grips with the statutory damage provisions of the Copyright Act [which allow for damages up to $150,000 per infringement] and put those into force. Ultimately, years from now, it will be judged whether the Righthaven approach is superior... I think right now, Righthaven is the best solution out there.' Subscribe to Corporate Counsel

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Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No | View Clip
09/09/2010
Merced Sun-Star - Online

No: Only U.S. has clout to make peace

As Israelis and Palestinians resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in 20 months, the United States must continue to engage actively in the process and make a determined effort to broker a final peace settlement.

A hands-off approach to the conflict, as President George W. Bush learned late in his second term, only makes our broader foreign policy aims in the region more difficult to achieve. Finding a solution to the conflict remains central to our long-term success in the Muslim world, including our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as our fight against al-Qaida.

During his Cairo speech in June 2009, President Barack Obama articulated a clear and balanced vision for ending the conflict. Implementing that vision would make a pivotal difference in restoring U.S. power and prestige, whereas a failure will deepen our divide with the Muslim world and give further ammunition to its violent extremist elements.

To improve U.S. relations with the region, Obama must seek a legitimate settlement that addresses security concerns of Israelis and Palestinians. In the absence of presidential pressure, Israel will not make the painful concessions, including withdrawal from the Arab territories and dismantling settlements, to move beyond a stalemate.

To achieve a breakthrough, Obama must put considerable pressure on Israel. This will be politically challenging on the domestic front, especially in an election year, and because Israel is led by a formidable and hawkish Likud-run government.

But for the sake of U.S. vital interests, Israel's long-term security and the long-sought ambition of the Palestinians to have a state of their own, Obama must push forward with a two-state solution before the window of opportunity closes forever.

He must not let the extreme elements on either side of the conflict veto U.S. policy and national interest. Any breakthrough requires that the president actively engage pro-peace groups in both countries to exert pressure on the extreme elements that want to sabotage any peace settlement.

Arabs are ready for peace. In the past few years, there has been a dramatic shift across the Arab world regarding peacemaking with the Jewish state. A consensus exists today among Arab elites and the general public that land-for-peace remains the only viable option, with Israel withdrawing from the 1967 occupied Arab territories, including East Jerusalem, in exchange for full diplomatic recognition by all Arab countries. This was well-articulated in the 2002 and 2007 Arab Peace Initiative.

Obviously, there are political risks for the president, but the rewards if he succeeds are worth the possible risks. A U.S.-brokered Arab-Israeli solution and the establishment of a viable, fully independent state for the Palestinians with its capital in East Jerusalem would dramatically improve U.S. credibility among Muslims, facilitate its political engagement with Iran and its decision to find a regionwide formula to stabilize Afghanistan, and deal with the rising political extremism in Pakistan.

If Obama wishes to accomplish more than just repairing the damage wrought by his predecessor, he must have the political will and vision to chart a new course of action toward the region and accompany those eloquent Cairo words with concrete action.

Great presidents always have taken risks, and Obama could go down in history as the only president who was able to bring peace to the Holy Land. More important, a peace settlement would bring lasting security to Israel and end the chronic suffering of the Palestinians.

Senzai is an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University and the director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.

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Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No | View Clip
09/09/2010
Modesto Bee - Online, The

No: Only U.S. has clout to make peace

As Israelis and Palestinians resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in 20 months, the United States must continue to engage actively in the process and make a determined effort to broker a final peace settlement.

A hands-off approach to the conflict, as President George W. Bush learned late in his second term, only makes our broader foreign policy aims in the region more difficult to achieve. Finding a solution to the conflict remains central to our long-term success in the Muslim world, including our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as our fight against al-Qaida.

During his Cairo speech in June 2009, President Barack Obama articulated a clear and balanced vision for ending the conflict. Implementing that vision would make a pivotal difference in restoring U.S. power and prestige, whereas a failure will deepen our divide with the Muslim world and give further ammunition to its violent extremist elements.

To improve U.S. relations with the region, Obama must seek a legitimate settlement that addresses security concerns of Israelis and Palestinians. In the absence of presidential pressure, Israel will not make the painful concessions, including withdrawal from the Arab territories and dismantling settlements, to move beyond a stalemate.

To achieve a breakthrough, Obama must put considerable pressure on Israel. This will be politically challenging on the domestic front, especially in an election year, and because Israel is led by a formidable and hawkish Likud-run government.

But for the sake of U.S. vital interests, Israel's long-term security and the long-sought ambition of the Palestinians to have a state of their own, Obama must push forward with a two-state solution before the window of opportunity closes forever.

He must not let the extreme elements on either side of the conflict veto U.S. policy and national interest. Any breakthrough requires that the president actively engage pro-peace groups in both countries to exert pressure on the extreme elements that want to sabotage any peace settlement.

Arabs are ready for peace. In the past few years, there has been a dramatic shift across the Arab world regarding peacemaking with the Jewish state. A consensus exists today among Arab elites and the general public that land-for-peace remains the only viable option, with Israel withdrawing from the 1967 occupied Arab territories, including East Jerusalem, in exchange for full diplomatic recognition by all Arab countries. This was well-articulated in the 2002 and 2007 Arab Peace Initiative.

Obviously, there are political risks for the president, but the rewards if he succeeds are worth the possible risks. A U.S.-brokered Arab-Israeli solution and the establishment of a viable, fully independent state for the Palestinians with its capital in East Jerusalem would dramatically improve U.S. credibility among Muslims, facilitate its political engagement with Iran and its decision to find a regionwide formula to stabilize Afghanistan, and deal with the rising political extremism in Pakistan.

If Obama wishes to accomplish more than just repairing the damage wrought by his predecessor, he must have the political will and vision to chart a new course of action toward the region and accompany those eloquent Cairo words with concrete action.

Great presidents always have taken risks, and Obama could go down in history as the only president who was able to bring peace to the Holy Land. More important, a peace settlement would bring lasting security to Israel and end the chronic suffering of the Palestinians.

Senzai is an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University and the director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.

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Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No
09/09/2010
Modesto Bee, The

As Israelis and Palestinians resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in 20 months, the United States must continue to engage actively in the process and make a determined effort to broker a final peace settlement.

A hands-off approach to the conflict, as President George W. Bush learned late in his second term, only makes our broader foreign policy aims in the region more difficult to achieve. Finding a solution to the conflict remains central to our long-term success in the Muslim world, including our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as our fight against al-Qaida.

During his Cairo speech in June 2009, President Barack Obama articulated a clear and balanced vision for ending the conflict. Implementing that vision would make a pivotal difference in restoring U.S. power and prestige, whereas a failure will deepen our divide with the Muslim world and give further ammunition to its violent extremist elements.

To improve U.S. relations with the region, Obama must seek a legitimate settlement that addresses security concerns of Israelis and Palestinians. In the absence of presidential pressure, Israel will not make the painful concessions, including withdrawal from the Arab territories and dismantling settlements, to move beyond a stalemate.

To achieve a breakthrough, Obama must put considerable pressure on Israel. This will be politically challenging on the domestic front, especially in an election year, and because Israel is led by a formidable and hawkish Likud-run government.

But for the sake of U.S. vital interests, Israel's long-term security and the long-sought ambition of the Palestinians to have a state of their own, Obama must push forward with a two-state solution before the window of opportunity closes forever.

He must not let the extreme elements on either side of the conflict veto U.S. policy and national interest. Any breakthrough requires that the president actively engage pro-peace groups in both countries to exert pressure on the extreme elements that want to sabotage any peace settlement.

Arabs are ready for peace. In the past few years, there has been a dramatic shift across the Arab world regarding peacemaking with the Jewish state. A consensus exists today among Arab elites and the general public that land-for-peace remains the only viable option, with Israel withdrawing from the 1967 occupied Arab territories, including East Jerusalem, in exchange for full diplomatic recognition by all Arab countries. This was well-articulated in the 2002 and 2007 Arab Peace Initiative.

Obviously, there are political risks for the president, but the rewards if he succeeds are worth the possible risks. A U.S.-brokered Arab-Israeli solution and the establishment of a viable, fully independent state for the Palestinians with its capital in East Jerusalem would dramatically improve U.S. credibility among Muslims, facilitate its political engagement with Iran and its decision to find a regionwide formula to stabilize Afghanistan, and deal with the rising political extremism in Pakistan.

If Obama wishes to accomplish more than just repairing the damage wrought by his predecessor, he must have the political will and vision to chart a new course of action toward the region and accompany those eloquent Cairo words with concrete action.

Great presidents always have taken risks, and Obama could go down in history as the only president who was able to bring peace to the Holy Land. More important, a peace settlement would bring lasting security to Israel and end the chronic suffering of the Palestinians.

Senzai is an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University and the director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding .

McCLATCHY-TRIBUNE

Copyright © 2010 McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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Where are they now? The champion 1960 Philadelphia Eagles **The 1960 Eagles NFL Championship
09/09/2010
Morning Call

COACHES

Head coach Lawrence "Buck" Shaw Born March 28, 1899. Died March 19, 1977. Notre Dame graduate played on Knute Rockne's first undefeated team. Began coaching career in 1924. Retired immediately after the championship game. Stadium at Santa Clara University is named after him.

Assistant coach Charlie Gauer Born Sept. 14, 1921. Died November 1973. Credited with discovering a weakness in Green Bay's kickoff coverage that led to game-changing return by Ted Dean in fourth quarter of championship game.

Assistant coach Jerry Williams Born Nov. 1, 1923. Died Dec. 21, 1998. Later became head coach of the Eagles and various Canadian Football League teams.

Assistant coach Nick Skorich Born June 26, 1921. Died Oct. 2, 2004. Succeeded Buck Shaw as head coach. Also coached Cleveland Browns and served as NFL's supervisor of officials.

STARTERS

QB-P Norm Van Brocklin Born March 15, 1926. Died May 2, 1983. "The Dutchman," who was brought over from the Rams two seasons earlier, threw for 2,471 yards and 24 TDs in the championship season, his final one as a player in the NFL and his first as a first-team All-Pro. He was named the league MVP by both wire services (AP and UPI) at the time and won the Bert Bell Award. Went on to become head coach of the Minnesota Vikings and Atlanta Falcons. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1971.

HB Billy Ray Barnes Born May 14, 1935. Rushed 117 times for 315 yards and caught 19 passes for 132 yards. His 9-yard run and 13-yard pass reception were pivotal in the decisive drive of the championship game. Later became head coach of the Continental Football League's Charleston Rockets and joined Norm Van Brocklin's staff in Atlanta as running backs coach. Resides in hometown of Landis, N.C.

FB-PR-KR Ted Dean Born March 24, 1938. Born and raised in the Philly suburb of Radnor, Dean went on to play for Wichita State before being drafted by the Eagles in 1960. Scored the winning touchdown in the title game. Retired schoolteacher. Resides in Sunrise, Ariz.

FB Clarence Peaks Born Sept. 23, 1935. Died March 31, 2007. Was team's leading rusher until being felled by broken leg at midseason. Still finished with team highs of 465 rushing yards and 5.4 yards per carry.

WR Tommy McDonald Born July 26, 1934. Was second-leading receiver and top deep threat on championship team. Went on to play for four other teams and compile career numbers of 495 receptions for 8,410 yards and 84 TDs. Resides in suburban Philadelphia. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1998.

SE-TE Pete Retzlaff Born Aug. 21, 1931. Was Norm Van Brocklin's favorite target with 46 receptions for 826 yards. Later served as president of the players' union, spent four years as the team's general manager and worked as a TV color analyst for CBS. Resides in Gilbertsville.

TE-K Bobby Walston Born Oct. 17, 1928. Died Oct. 17, 1987. Clutch placekicker and gritty tight end who caught 30 passes for 563 yards and made good on 14 of 20 field goal attempts. Eventually became an Eagles scout and then player personnel director of Chicago Bears.

LT Jim McCusker Born May 19, 1936. Started every game at left tackle and played seven seasons in NFL. Currently a restaurant owner in hometown of Jamestown, N.Y.

LG-K John Wittenborn Born March 1, 1936. Alternated with Jerry Huth at left guard. Became a college assistant coach after playing days. Resides in Cutler, Ill.

LG Jerry Huth Born July 23, 1933. Alternated with John Wittenborn at left guard. Spent six seasons in the NFL. Resides in Las Vegas.

C-LB Chuck Bednarik Born May 1, 1925. Bethlehem resident and World War II vet was oldest player on team and last of the league's true two-way players. Nicknamed "Concrete Charlie" because of his offseason job as a concrete salesman. Formerly a middle linebacker, he was playing outside by this season, with Chuck Weber in the middle. Only player remaining from Eagles' 1949 championship. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1967. Resides in Coopersburg.

RG Stan Campbell Born Aug. 26, 1930. Died March 14, 2005 Played nine years in league before opening a carpet-cleaning business.

RT J.D. Smith Born May 27, 1936. Second-round draft pick in 1959 went on to make Pro Bowl the next year and play a total of seven seasons. Resides in Austin, Texas.

LDE Joe Robb Born March 15, 1937. Deceased. His 13-year career included a Pro Bowl appearance in 1966.

LDT Jess Richardson Born Aug. 18, 1930. Died June 17, 1975. Became an assistant coach after retirement. Considered to be last lineman to play without a facemask.

RDT Ed Khayat Born Sept. 14, 1935. Played six more seasons and served as head coach of the Eagles from 1971-72. Also coached in Arena Football League in each of past two decades. Resides in Nashville, Tenn.

RDE Marion Campbell Born May 25, 1929. Played one more season before beginning coaching career that landed him back in Philly as head coach in mid-1980s. Made the Pro Bowl in 1959 and '60. Resides in St. Augustine, Fla.

LLB Bob Pellegrini Born Nov. 13, 1934. Died April 11, 2008. Mostly backed up Chuck Bednarik at this spot in championship season. Played a total of nine seasons and later became an NFL assistant coach.

RLB Maxie Baughan Born Aug. 3, 1938. Stellar playing career included nine trips to Pro Bowl and two first-team All-Pro selections. Coached in NFL as an assistant for various teams and also was Cornell's head coach from 1983 through '88. Resides in Reisterstown, Md.

MLB Chuck Weber Born March 25, 1930. Provided six interceptions for championship team. Grew up in suburban Philadelphia and went to Abington High School. After retirement, was defensive coordinator for Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Colts, where he succeeded teammate Maxie Baughan. Resides in Poway, Calif.

LCB Jimmy Carr Born March 25, 1933. Spent 24 seasons as assistant coach in the league, many of them as defensive coordinator, where he became a major influence on Bill Belichick, among others, with innovative blitz and nickel packages. Resides in Fishers, Ind.

RCB Tom Brookshier Born Dec. 13, 1931. Died Jan. 29, 2010. First-team All-Pro in 1960 who went on to become Philadelphia broadcasting icon. Worked nationally as a CBS color commentator -- was part of the network's top team, pairing with Pat Summerall, for most of the 1970s -- and was one of the first hosts of sports talk radio in Philadelphia.

S Don Burroughs Born Aug. 19, 1931. Died Oct. 20, 2006. Led championship team with nine interceptions and played 10 seasons in the league. At 6-5, he was one of the tallest to ever play the position.

S Bobby Freeman Born Oct. 19, 1932. Died Dec. 30, 2003. Contributed four interceptions to title team and played two more seasons before retiring and moving on to become a college assistant coach.

KEY RESERVES

RB Tim Brown Born May 24, 1937. Used mostly as a returner for title team after being picked up from Green Bay. Made three Pro Bowls in a solid career but is known best for his acting work, particularly his movie appearance as the pro football ringer brought in to play for the 4077th unit in the movie "MASH." Resides in Palm Springs, Calif.

FB Theron Sapp Born June 15, 1935. Played five more years before becoming a restaurant owner in Georgia. His jersey number (40) is one of only four to be retired by the University of Georgia. Resides in Georgia.

DT John Wilcox Born March 15, 1938. Used mostly on special teams. Championship season was his one and only in the league. Became a teacher. Resides in Milton-Freewater, Ore.

DL Riley Gunnels Born Aug. 24, 1937. Played six more seasons, including two with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Now owns a printing business in Ocean City, N.J.

QB Sonny Jurgensen Born Aug. 23, 1934. Best known for his work with Washington Redskins after being traded away on April Fool's day, 1964, for Norm Snead and Claude Crabb. Vince Lombardi once called him the best quarterback he had ever seen. As a broadcaster, still calls all Redskins games on radio. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1983.

E Dick Lucas Born Jan. 9, 1934. Went to work for Mobile Oil marketing after playing days. Resides in West Chester.

Compiled by Nick Fierro

Copyright © 2010 The Morning Call, Inc.

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Where are they now: The 1960 Philadelphia Eagles | View Clip
09/09/2010
Morning Call - Online

The team photo for the 1960 Philadelphia Eagles. (Photo courtesy of Philadelphia E, THE MORNING CALL / August 30, 2010)

8:36 p.m. EDT, September 8, 2010

COACHES

Head coach Lawrence "Buck" Shaw: Born March 28, 1899. Died March 19, 1977. Notre Dame graduate played on Knute Rockne's first undefeated team. Began coaching career in 1924. Retired immediately after the championship game. Stadium at Santa Clara University is named after him.

Assistant coach Charlie Gauer: Born Sept. 14, 1921. Died November 1973. Credited with discovering a weakness in Green Bay's kickoff coverage that led to game-changing return by Ted Dean in fourth quarter of championship game.

Assistant coach Jerry Williams: Born Nov. 1, 1923. Died Dec. 21, 1998. Later became head coach of the Eagles and various Canadian Football League teams.

Assistant coach Nick Skorich: Born June 26, 1921. Died Oct. 2, 2004. Succeeded Buck Shaw as head coach. Also coached Cleveland Browns and served as NFL's supervisor of officials.

STARTERS

QB-P Norm Van Brocklin: Born March 15, 1926. Died May 2, 1983. "The Dutchman," who was brought over from the Rams two seasons earlier, threw for 2,471 yards and 24 TDs in the championship season, his final one as a player in the NFL and his first as a first-team All-Pro. He was named the league MVP by both wire services (AP and UPI) at the time and won the Bert Bell Award. Went on to become head coach of the Minnesota Vikings and Atlanta Falcons. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1971.

HB Billy Ray Barnes: Born May 14, 1935. Rushed 117 times for 315 yards and caught 19 passes for 132 yards. His 9-yard run and 13-yard pass reception were pivotal in the decisive drive of the championship game. Later became head coach of the Continental Football League's Charleston Rockets and joined Norm Van Brocklin's staff in Atlanta as running backs coach. Resides in hometown of Landis, N.C.

FB-PR-KR Ted Dean: Born March 24, 1938. Born and raised in the Philly suburb of Radnor, Dean went on to play for Wichita State before being drafted by the Eagles in 1960. Scored the winning touchdown in the title game. Retired schoolteacher. Resides in Sunrise, Ariz.

FB Clarence Peaks: Born Sept. 23, 1935. Died March 31, 2007. Was team's leading rusher until being felled by broken leg at midseason. Still finished with team highs of 465 rushing yards and 5.4 yards per carry.

WR Tommy McDonald: Born July 26, 1934. Was second-leading receiver and top deep threat on championship team. Went on to play for four other teams and compile career numbers of 495 receptions for 8,410 yards and 84 TDs. Resides in suburban Philadelphia. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1998.

SE-TE Pete Retzlaff: Born Aug. 21, 1931. Was Norm Van Brocklin's favorite target on way to catching 46 passes for 826 yards. Later served as president of the players' union, spent four years as the team's general manager and worked as a TV color analyst for CBS. Resides in Gilbertsville.

TE-K Bobby Walston: Born Oct. 17, 1928. Died Oct. 17, 1987. Clutch placekicker and gritty tight end who caught 30 passes for 563 yards and made good on 14 of 20 field goal attempts. Eventually became an Eagles scout and then player personnel director of Chicago Bears.

LT Jim McCusker: Born May 19, 1936. Started every game at left tackle and played seven seasons in NFL. Currently a restaurant owner in hometown of Jamestown, N.Y.

LG-K John Wittenborn: Born March 1, 1936. Alternated with Jerry Huth at left guard. Became a college assistant coach after playing days. Resides in Cutler, Ill.

LG Jerry Huth: Born July 23, 1933. Alternated with John Wittenborn at left guard. Spent six seasons in the NFL. Resides in Las Vegas.

C-LB Chuck Bednarik: Born May 1, 1925. Bethlehem resident and World War II vet was oldest player on team and last of the league's true two-way players. Nicknamed "Concrete Charlie" because of his offseason job as a concrete salesman. Formerly a middle linebacker, he was playing outside by this season, with Chuck Weber in the middle. Only player remaining from Eagles' 1949 championship. Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1967. Resides in Coopersburg.

RG Stan Campbell: Born Aug. 26, 1930. Died March 14, 2005: Played nine years in league before opening a carpet-cleaning business.

RT J.D. Smith: Born May 27, 1936. Second-round draft pick in 1959 went on to make Pro Bowl the next year and play a total of seven seasons. Resides in Austin, Texas.

LDE Joe Robb: Born March 15, 1937. Deceased. His 13-year career included a Pro Bowl appearance in 1966.

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Philadelphia Business Journal - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Did U.S. err by pushing for Israeli-Palestinian talks? No | View Clip
09/09/2010
Sacramento Bee - Online, The

As Israelis and Palestinians resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in 20 months, the United States must continue to engage actively in the process and make a determined effort to broker a final peace settlement.

A hands-off approach to the conflict, as President George W. Bush learned late in his second term, only makes our broader foreign policy aims in the region more difficult to achieve. Finding a solution to the conflict remains central to our long-term success in the Muslim world, including our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as our fight against al-Qaida.

During his Cairo speech in June 2009, President Barack Obama articulated a clear and balanced vision for ending the conflict. Implementing that vision would make a pivotal difference in restoring U.S. power and prestige, whereas a failure will deepen our divide with the Muslim world and give further ammunition to its violent extremist elements.

To improve U.S. relations with the region, Obama must seek a legitimate settlement that addresses security concerns of Israelis and Palestinians. In the absence of presidential pressure, Israel will not make the painful concessions, including withdrawal from the Arab territories and dismantling settlements, to move beyond a stalemate.

To achieve a breakthrough, Obama must put considerable pressure on Israel. This will be politically challenging on the domestic front, especially in an election year, and because Israel is led by a formidable and hawkish Likud-run government.

But for the sake of U.S. vital interests, Israel's long-term security and the long-sought ambition of the Palestinians to have a state of their own, Obama must push forward with a two-state solution before the window of opportunity closes forever.

He must not let the extreme elements on either side of the conflict veto U.S. policy and national interest. Any breakthrough requires that the president actively engage pro-peace groups in both countries to exert pressure on the extreme elements that want to sabotage any peace settlement.

Arabs are ready for peace. In the past few years, there has been a dramatic shift across the Arab world regarding peacemaking with the Jewish state. A consensus exists today among Arab elites and the general public that land-for-peace remains the only viable option, with Israel withdrawing from the 1967 occupied Arab territories, including East Jerusalem, in exchange for full diplomatic recognition by all Arab countries. This was well-articulated in the 2002 and 2007 Arab Peace Initiative.

Obviously, there are political risks for the president, but the rewards if he succeeds are worth the possible risks. A U.S.-brokered Arab-Israeli solution and the establishment of a viable, fully independent state for the Palestinians with its capital in East Jerusalem would dramatically improve U.S. credibility among Muslims, facilitate its political engagement with Iran and its decision to find a regionwide formula to stabilize Afghanistan, and deal with the rising political extremism in Pakistan.

If Obama wishes to accomplish more than just repairing the damage wrought by his predecessor, he must have the political will and vision to chart a new course of action toward the region and accompany those eloquent Cairo words with concrete action.

Great presidents always have taken risks, and Obama could go down in history as the only president who was able to bring peace to the Holy Land. More important, a peace settlement would bring lasting security to Israel and end the chronic suffering of the Palestinians.

Senzai is an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University and the director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.

McCLATCHY-TRIBUNE

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
San Francisco Business Times - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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CONVOLUTED LOVE LIFE IS UNTANGLED
09/09/2010
San Jose Mercury News

Hickeys and sleepovers, lies and slammed doors.

The loves and betrayals of Paul Garcia, the 32-year-old bar owner who is accused of masterminding a murder-for-hire plot to get rid of his romantic rival, were on full display in Superior Court on Wednesday.

Gina Ronzano, Garcia's first love and ex-fiancée, took the witness stand in a slim, black dress and told the jury the highs and lows of her 10-year relationship with Garcia -- including her anger when she found out he was dating bartender Tessa Donnelly -- and her conversation with him the day after Mark Achilli was gunned down in the driveway of his Los Gatos condo.

Ronzano met Garcia in 1998, when she was 28 and he was 19 and a recent graduate from San Jose's Bellarmine College Preparatory.

"He was really quiet and sweet and very, very intelligent and very ambitious and I liked that," she said. She smiled at him from the witness stand and Garcia, clean-shaven in a suit and tie, returned a grin.

They got engaged and bought a house together in 2004, she said.

"How was the relationship?" asked District Attorney-elect Jeff Rosen, who is prosecuting the case.

"It was good," she said. "We had our issues, but it was good."

Some of those issues included his mother, with whom he had been living, and the feeling Garcia didn't appreciate Ronzano. Her nickname for herself in the relationship was "Captain Invisible."

After he bought Mountain Charley's from Achilli in August 2007, he came home with a "hickey on his neck," she said, and they broke up.

"He had gone to an all-boys school and lived with his mother. He didn't have a lot of experience," she said. When he bought Mountain Charley's, "a lot of girls were coming on to him and I think he was intrigued."

Shortly after he bought the bar, he began dating Donnelly, the bartender who had recently broken up with Achilli, the previous owner. It's these relationships that form the love triangle that the prosecution contends led to Achilli's death.

Another witness, Francis Ogbogu, testified that he told Garcia that dating a woman who worked for him "is not good business, period."

Ogbogu, a former Santa Clara University football player, met Garcia while Garcia was coaching freshman football at Bellarmine and Ogbogu's young son was a ball boy. Ogbogu also rented office space on The Alameda from him.

But Garcia dated Donnelly anyway, and often complained to him about how Donnelly was "acting funny" by standing him up on dates, then acting as though nothing was wrong.

Garcia told his old girlfriend that he had broken up with Donnelly in late 2007, so Ronzano starting dating him again in January 2008. But just as Garcia was apparently shocked that Donnelly would be dating another man while she was dating him, Ronzano said she was in disbelief that Garcia had resumed dating the bartender while dating her, too.

"I was angry he lied," Ronzano said.

Another former Mountain Charley's bartender, Steven Wilkins, also took the stand and told a story of how he found himself in the middle of the alleged love triangle. A couple of weeks before Achilli was killed, he was sleeping on Donnelly's couch after work one night. Garcia and Donnelly had spent the night in Donnelly's bedroom, and there was a pounding on the door the next morning. It was Achilli. He let himself in.

"He pointed at the bedroom and asked if Paul was in there," Wilkins said. "I said yes."

Achilli walked out, slamming the door behind him, Wilkins said. Donnelly came out of her room and ran after Achilli. That night, Wilkins told Garcia to move on without Donnelly.

"It's over," Wilkins said Garcia told him, "but it's not over -- if you know what I mean."

And with that, the trial ended for the week. It will resume Monday with Wilkins back on the stand.

Contact Julia Prodis Sulek at 408-278-3409.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal - Online

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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Jed York, Michael Engh join Silicon Valley Leadership board | View Clip
09/09/2010
Washington Business Journal - Online

Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group added Jed York and Fr. Michael Engh to its 34-member board of directors.

York is in his second year as president and CEO of the San Francisco 49ers. "Since taking his position he has been a major proponent of moving the 49ers to Santa Clara," the group said. York was previously diirector of strategic planning for the 49ers.

Engh was named the 28th president of Santa Clara University last year. He was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 1981 and worked previously at Loyola Marymount University.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group represents more than 300 of the area's employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in the area.

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle | View Clip
09/08/2010
ABC Local - Online

PALO ALTO, CA (KGO) -- A multi-million dollar personnel battle has erupted between Silicon Valley giants Hewlett Packard and Oracle. The two powerful companies are fighting over the services and competitive secrets of just one man, former HP CEO Mark Hurd. HP is now suing Hurd to keep him from taking a job at Oracle.

Hurd was HP's CEO for five years and his former company does not want him anywhere near rival Oracle, much less serving as co-president.

HP claims an executive job at Oracle would violate Hurd's two-year separation and confidentiality agreement.

"They are concerned that clearly, about the competitive threat that he poses, particularly about the ways in which Hurd might be able to help Sun Microsystems, now part of Oracle, compete more effectively with Hewlett Packard," Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman said.

The lawsuit says, "Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

Chuck House worked for HP for 30 years and wrote the book published last year called "The HP Phenomenon." He says Oracle CEO Larry Ellison knew he was picking a fight with HP and did not care.

"I think Larry knew full well what he is doing, there's no question he knew this would ring the bell over at the HP board and in the HP executive suite," House said.

Late Tuesday, Oracle sounded offended, calling the HP lawsuit "vindictive."

In a statement Oracle said, "The HP board is making it virtually impossible for Oracle and HP to continue to cooperate and work together in the IT marketplace."

Despite Hurd's signature on multiple confidentiality agreements, Goldman says this is not a slam dunk for HP.

"California courts are very reluctant to restrict employment and it's not entirely clear to me if they would agree with HP's assessment of the situation," he said.

Oracle shares were up more than $1.30 on the day following Oracle's announcement of Hurd's hiring.

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Suing Hurd May Be Hard For HP | View Clip
09/08/2010
KQED-FM

Legal experts say Hewlett-Packard may have an uphill battle in its fight to keep ex-CEO Mark Hurd from going to work for Oracle. HP sued Hurd yesterday in state court after Oracle announced it was hiring him as president. Santa Clara University Professor Tyler Ochoa is quoted on the legal basis for the lawsuit.

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HP SUES TO BLOCK HURD'S MOVE
09/08/2010
San Jose Mercury News

Hewlett-Packard escalated its war with Mark Hurd on Tuesday, filing a lawsuit that accuses the former CEO of violating confidentiality agreements by going to work for tech rival Oracle.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting similar arguments.

But the 51-page lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment Monday night -- shows Palo Alto-based HP is not ready to sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that was once a partner but is increasingly acting like a competitor.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

HP's lawsuit seeks damages and an injunction against Hurd, arguing that its former CEO could not hold a position at Oracle without putting "HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril." Oracle responded late Tuesday with a statement blasting what it called "a vindictive lawsuit."

The Oracle statement went on to quote Ellison as saying, "The HP board is making it virtually impossible for Oracle and HP to continue to cooperate and work together in the IT (information technology) marketplace."

HP and Oracle have been close partners in the past, with many of their customers running Oracle's database software on HP's servers. But with Oracle's recent purchase of computer maker Sun Microsystems, Ellison has been pushing to expand from Oracle's traditional business of selling commercial software into the broader market for computing systems that include both hardware and software. That's a market where HP had been successful under Hurd.

Among other things, HP's lawsuit notes that Hurd was privy to a variety of sensitive information as CEO of the world's largest tech company, including an internal HP report in March that assessed Redwood City-based Oracle as a competitor.

Ellison, meanwhile, added a personal note to the budding rivalry when he publicly criticized HP's board for forcing his friend Hurd to resign on Aug. 6, following an investigation into Hurd's relationship with a marketing contractor. Ellison accused HP directors of "cowardly corporate political correctness" and called Hurd's ouster "the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago."

In the ensuing weeks, Hurd and HP have also moved into an adversarial mode, as sources close to the former CEO and others aligned with HP's board traded conflicting accounts of the reasons and events that led to Hurd's ouster.

HP is now contending that Hurd failed to inform his former employer that he was going to work for Oracle, which HP says Hurd was obliged to do under a severance agreement that allowed him to leave with cash and stock valued at $35 million or more.

But the lawsuit's primary argument is that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed as CEO. The suit says Hurd's severance agreement required him to abide by those commitments for two years after his resignation.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," HP said in a brief statement. A Hurd spokesman declined to comment.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant. Oracle has not publicly detailed Hurd's new duties, except to say he will be co-president along with veteran Ellison lieutenant Safra Catz. But many analysts expect Hurd would be involved in rebuilding Sun's struggling business.

The HP suit asserts "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

Legal experts, however, said California courts have rejected such arguments in the past.

California law specifically does not allow so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states have used to restrict workers from joining rival firms. As an alternative, some companies have tried to assert that a key employee who joins a competitor will inevitably take actions or make decisions based on confidential information acquired from the old job.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," said Frederick Baron, chairman of employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

In a sign of its determination, however, HP has hired a battery of outside lawyers, including the Los Angeles firms of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher and Seyfarth Shaw, known for expertise in employment law, along with San Jose's Allen Ruby, a highly respected courtroom litigator.

Experts said that similar lawsuits in California are often settled out of court. Such a settlement might require Hurd to delay his new job, or restrict him from overseeing parts of Oracle's business.

That was the case last year when HP recruited David Donatelli, a former executive in charge of the data storage business at EMC. Under a legal ruling in Massachusetts, where EMC is based, Donatelli went to work overseeing HP's server and networking division but waited a year before adding storage to his responsibilities.

Negotiating a settlement could be more difficult, Baron acknowledged, because Hurd was responsible for all of HP's business units, rather than one or two segments.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at Twitter.com/BrandonBailey.

Copyright © 2010 San Jose Mercury News

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Court fight erupts over Hurd | View Clip
09/08/2010
Star Tribune - Online

An executive's sex scandal. His ouster. A bombastic billionaire competitor who redeemed him. And now a possible court battle over high-tech secrets.

The stuff of television soap operas rarely comes to Silicon Valley, but that story line continued to develop with Hewlett-Packard's lawsuit filed Tuesday against its former chief executive, Mark Hurd.

One day after Hurd agreed to become president of rival software firm Oracle, HP filed suit to block the move. HP, which had ousted Hurd last month after he allegedly filed inaccurate expense reports to cover up a relationship, claimed the executive would violate a confidentiality agreement by working for Oracle.

Oracle's mercurial and outspoken founder, Larry Ellison, was a surprising defender of Hurd in the wake of the scandal. Last month, Ellison sent an e-mail to HP board members criticizing their actions, saying the dismissal was "the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago." Even so, Silicon Valley observers were shocked Monday when Ellison announced he had brought on Hurd as president. "Mark did a brilliant job at HP, and I expect he'll do even better at Oracle," Ellison said. HP competes with Oracle to outfit Fortune 500 firms, universities and government agencies with giant computer servers and software. At the heart of its lawsuit, the storied printer and computer maker said Hurd took millions of dollars in cash, stock and options over his five years as chief executive with the condition he would protect HP's technology and business secrets, even after he leaves.

Specifically, Hurd signed a contract stating that he would not work or consult for a competitor for up to 12 months after leaving. HP said that as chief executive, Hurd had particular insight and knowledge of the firm's confidential business information, including the design of its 2010 and 2011 business plans. Hurd was also responsible for cultivating customer relationships, which could be at jeopardy if Hurd were to lure them to his new firm, HP said. "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others," HP said in its suit filed with the Santa Clara County, Calif., Superior Court.

A spokeswoman for Oracle declined to comment.

The employment suit is a run-of-the-mill case in many ways, attorneys said. High-tech firms routinely require employees to sign confidentiality agreements. Start-ups often require venture capitalists to sign non-disclosure agreements before presenting new business ideas for potential investment.

Jennifer Rubin, an employment attorney for the Mintz Levin law firm, said the court will look at several factors, such as how long Hurd was chief executive of HP and the knowledge he gained there. "But ultimately the question will rest on whether Hurd can do his new job without disclosing all the information he learned while at HP," Rubin said. "It's very analytical and fact-based." Employment and technology law experts say the dispute points to the fiercely competitive landscape for executive talent. Before working at HP, Hurd was chief executive of NCR, a company that provides data warehousing and that competes with Oracle.

Though routine in some aspects, the dispute between the Silicon Valley heavyweights has gained national attention for its dramatic twists and the involvement of some of corporate America's most prominent executives.

Hurd was brought to HP five years ago to help revive one of the industry's original computer makers as it struggled to find a new identity. The marketplace had become less interested in hardware for desktops and servers and more focused on technologies such as cloud computing, mobile phone applications and social networking sites. Hurd succeeded in cutting costs and building the company's software and corporate services division, helping lift its flagging stock.

Then this past June, a former marketing consultant complained to HP's board that Hurd had sexually harassed her. The board launched an investigation that did not find evidence of sexual harassment but revealed that Hurd submitted several inaccurate expense reports meant to conceal his relationship. Hurd resigned on Aug. 6. "Any time the big Silicon Valley elephants go tusk to tusk, it's always exciting," said Eric Goldman, a technology law professor at Santa Clara University. "But it also points to the competition for talent."

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HP sues ousted CEO Hurd over hiring by rival Oracle | View Clip
09/08/2010
Washington Post - Online

An executive's sex scandal. His ouster. A bombastic billionaire competitor who redeemed him. And now a possible court battle over high-tech secrets.

The stuff of television soap operas rarely comes to Silicon Valley, but that story line continued to develop with Hewlett-Packard's lawsuit filed Tuesday against its former chief executive, Mark Hurd.

One day after Hurd agreed to become president of rival software firm Oracle, HP filed suit to block the move. HP, which had ousted Hurd last month after he allegedly filed inaccurate expense reports to cover up a relationship, claimed the executive would violate a confidentiality agreement by working for Oracle.

Oracle's mercurial and outspoken founder, Larry Ellison, was a surprising defender of Hurd in the wake of the scandal. Last month, Ellison sent an e-mail to HP board members criticizing their actions, saying the dismissal was 'the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago.' Even so, Silicon Valley observers were shocked Monday when Ellison announced he had brought on Hurd as president. 'Mark did a brilliant job at HP, and I expect he'll do even better at Oracle,' Ellison said. HP competes with Oracle to outfit Fortune 500 firms, universities and government agencies with giant computer servers and software. At the heart of its lawsuit, the storied printer and computer maker said Hurd took millions of dollars in cash, stock and options over his five years as chief executive with the condition he would protect HP's technology and business secrets, even after he leaves.

Specifically, Hurd signed a contract stating that he would not work or consult for a competitor for up to 12 months after leaving. HP said that as chief executive, Hurd had particular insight and knowledge of the firm's confidential business information, including the design of its 2010 and 2011 business plans. Hurd was also responsible for cultivating customer relationships, which could be at jeopardy if Hurd were to lure them to his new firm, HP said. 'In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others,' HP said in its suit filed with the Santa Clara County, Calif., Superior Court.

Ellison called the lawsuit 'vindictive' and said Oracle has long viewed 'HP as an important partner,' according to a company statement. 'By filing this vindictive lawsuit against Oracle and Mark Hurd, the HP board is acting with utter disregard for that partnership, our joint customers, and their own shareholders and employees,' Ellison said. The employment suit is a run-of-the-mill case in many ways, attorneys said. High-tech firms routinely require employees to sign confidentiality agreements. Start-ups often require venture capitalists to sign non-disclosure agreements before presenting new business ideas for potential investment.

Jennifer B. Rubin, an employment attorney for the Mintz Levin law firm, said the court will look at several factors, such as how long Hurd was chief executive of HP and the knowledge he gained there. 'But ultimately the question will rest on whether Hurd can do his new job without disclosing all the information he learned while at HP,' Rubin said. 'It's very analytical and fact-based.' Employment and technology law experts say the dispute points to the fiercely competitive landscape for executive talent. Before working at HP, Hurd was chief executive of NCR, a company that provides data warehousing and that competes with Oracle.

Though routine in some aspects, the dispute between the Silicon Valley heavyweights has gained national attention for its dramatic twists and the involvement of some of corporate America's most prominent executives.

Hurd was brought to HP five years ago to help revive one of the industry's original computer makers as it struggled to find a new identity. The marketplace had become less interested in hardware for desktops and servers and more focused on technologies such as cloud computing, mobile phone applications and social networking sites. Hurd succeeded in cutting costs and building the company's software and corporate services division, helping lift its flagging stock.

Then in June, a former marketing consultant complained to HP's board that Hurd had sexually harassed her. The board launched an investigation that did not find evidence of sexual harassment but revealed that Hurd submitted several inaccurate expense reports meant to conceal his relationship. Hurd resigned on Aug. 6. 'Any time the big Silicon Valley elephants go tusk to tusk, it's always exciting,' said Eric Goldman, a technology law professor at Santa Clara University. 'But it also points to the competition for talent.'

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle
09/07/2010
Alameda Times-Star

SAN JOSE -- Hewlett-Packard filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop former CEO Mark Hurd from going to work at tech rival Oracle, as the controversy between Hurd and his former employer showed no signs of abating.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting efforts to restrict employees from changing jobs.

But the lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment -- shows that Palo Alto-based HP is not ready sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that is increasingly competing with HP in the commercial computer market.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

The lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court argues that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed while he was CEO at HP, and which he agreed to follow for two years after he resigned last month in a scandal over his relationship with an HP marketing contractor.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," an HP spokesman said in a brief statement. Hurd and Oracle declined to comment Monday.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant, but it seeks both temporary and permanent orders against Hurd. The suit says Oracle's hiring of Hurd would "put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

While Oracle has not publicly described Hurd's new duties in detail, the HP lawsuit asserts "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

The suit argues that Hurd, as HP's chief executive for the last five years, was privy to a variety of sensitive information about new products, sales and marketing strategies and even HP competitors. It mentions that, earlier this year, Hurd received a confidential internal assessment of Oracle as a competitor to HP.

But legal experts said California courts have rejected similar arguments as a reason to block employees from changing jobs in other cases. California law specifically does not allow for so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states use to restrict workers from jumping ship to competitors.

Some companies in California have tried to get around that law by focusing on the prospect that a key employee could exploit confidential information after moving to a job with a rival corporation, said Frederick Baron, chairman of the employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," Baron said.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

But if HP may have difficulty winning its case in court, experts said the two companies and Hurd may be motivated to work out a settlement to avoid the cost of litigation. Such a settlement could require Hurd to wait six months or a year before starting his new job, or perhaps restrict him from overseeing certain parts of Oracle's business, the experts said.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at .

Copyright © 2010 Alameda Times-Star. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle
09/07/2010
Argus, The

SAN JOSE -- Hewlett-Packard filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop former CEO Mark Hurd from going to work at tech rival Oracle, as the controversy between Hurd and his former employer showed no signs of abating.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting efforts to restrict employees from changing jobs.

But the lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment -- shows that Palo Alto-based HP is not ready sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that is increasingly competing with HP in the commercial computer market.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

The lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court argues that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed while he was CEO at HP, and which he agreed to follow for two years after he resigned last month in a scandal over his relationship with an HP marketing contractor.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," an HP spokesman said in a brief statement. Hurd and Oracle declined to comment Monday.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant, but it seeks both temporary and permanent orders against Hurd. The suit says Oracle's hiring of Hurd would "put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

While Oracle has not publicly described Hurd's new duties in detail, the HP lawsuit asserts "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

The suit argues that Hurd, as HP's chief executive for the last five years, was privy to a variety of sensitive information about new products, sales and marketing strategies and even HP competitors. It mentions that, earlier this year, Hurd received a confidential internal assessment of Oracle as a competitor to HP.

But legal experts said California courts have rejected similar arguments as a reason to block employees from changing jobs in other cases. California law specifically does not allow for so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states use to restrict workers from jumping ship to competitors.

Some companies in California have tried to get around that law by focusing on the prospect that a key employee could exploit confidential information after moving to a job with a rival corporation, said Frederick Baron, chairman of the employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," Baron said.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

But if HP may have difficulty winning its case in court, experts said the two companies and Hurd may be motivated to work out a settlement to avoid the cost of litigation. Such a settlement could require Hurd to wait six months or a year before starting his new job, or perhaps restrict him from overseeing certain parts of Oracle's business, the experts said.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at .

Copyright © 2010 The Argus. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle
09/07/2010
Daily Review, The

SAN JOSE -- Hewlett-Packard filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop former CEO Mark Hurd from going to work at tech rival Oracle, as the controversy between Hurd and his former employer showed no signs of abating.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting efforts to restrict employees from changing jobs.

But the lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment -- shows that Palo Alto-based HP is not ready sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that is increasingly competing with HP in the commercial computer market.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

The lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court argues that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed while he was CEO at HP, and which he agreed to follow for two years after he resigned last month in a scandal over his relationship with an HP marketing contractor.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," an HP spokesman said in a brief statement. Hurd and Oracle declined to comment Monday.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant, but it seeks both temporary and permanent orders against Hurd. The suit says Oracle's hiring of Hurd would "put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

While Oracle has not publicly described Hurd's new duties in detail, the HP lawsuit asserts "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

The suit argues that Hurd, as HP's chief executive for the last five years, was privy to a variety of sensitive information about new products, sales and marketing strategies and even HP competitors. It mentions that, earlier this year, Hurd received a confidential internal assessment of Oracle as a competitor to HP.

But legal experts said California courts have rejected similar arguments as a reason to block employees from changing jobs in other cases. California law specifically does not allow for so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states use to restrict workers from jumping ship to competitors.

Some companies in California have tried to get around that law by focusing on the prospect that a key employee could exploit confidential information after moving to a job with a rival corporation, said Frederick Baron, chairman of the employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," Baron said.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

But if HP may have difficulty winning its case in court, experts said the two companies and Hurd may be motivated to work out a settlement to avoid the cost of litigation. Such a settlement could require Hurd to wait six months or a year before starting his new job, or perhaps restrict him from overseeing certain parts of Oracle's business, the experts said.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at .

Copyright © 2010 The Daily Review. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Social Enterprise All Around: A Look at Noteworthy Events Coming Up | Blog | NextBillion.net | Development through Enterprise | View Clip
09/07/2010
Development through Enterprise

Social Enterprise All Around: A Look at Noteworthy Events Coming Up

August is around the corner and the summer is slowly starting to wind down. The social enterprise scene continues to burst with activity, however, and here's a brief overview of what's going on in the next couple of months. As always, please reach out and let us know if your event or one you know of is not on this list.

To close July in a positive tone, NextBillion ally and BOPreneur

, both taking place in his home Colorado. NextBillion will feature special coverage of both events in the next few days, so stay tuned for that as well. We'll also feature a summary of the recent Africa DiasporaCamp, whcih gathered in DC last week to discuss financial innovations to serve SMEs in Africa.

August won't have any shortage of venues and events to discuss different angles of social enterprise. This Monday, DC will see

Tech@State: Mobile Money, an event hosted by the U.S. State Department in Washington with several mobile money practitioners from around the globe. Later in the month, USAID and other NextBillion allies take the stage again for a three-day online discussion on market-based approaches to serve the Base of the Pyramid: "Missing Links of Business Development in Base of the Pyramid (BoP) Communities" .

A bit later in the month, the west coast comes back into the spotlight with the Final Presentations at

Santa Clara University's Global Social Benefit Incubator . I've had the privilege of being part of GSBI the last 2 years, and this is an event that you should not miss if you have the slightest chance of making it to Silicon Valley for a few days. More information on the final presentations can be found here .

September is still not on my radar (know of anything? Let us know!) but October comes strongly with San Francisco's Social Capital Markets Conference, the New York gathering on the 8th at

NextBillion will be a media partner at the first two venues, and will surely be well represented at the third. More very soon on our presence in Hyderabad...

Sparkseed 2010 Dangerously Ambitious Summit

Sparkseed is hosting an invite-only summit in Silicon Valley for young social entrepreneurs and impact investors August 19-22.

Re:

Buildings are expensive and not every person is able to buy it. Nevertheless,

To add a new comment, submit or cancel your comment reply.
To add a new comment, submit or cancel your comment reply.

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Mideast peace, Hillcrest Elementary School, legislative perks, municipal consolidation, the Oval Office and stimulus funds for schools | View Clip
09/07/2010
Journal News - Online

Here's a digest of opinion content published since Saturday, Sept. 4:

Saturday, Sept. 4
We published a pair of commentary pieces that addressed the Obama administration's efforts to forge a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Peace deal would help U.S. elsewhere: Commentary
Farid Senzai, an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University and the director of research at Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, writes that peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority would be a massive stabilizer for the fractious Middle East region.

Iran a priority: Commentary
Lawrence J. Haas, a senior fellow for U.S. foreign policy at the American Foreign Policy Council, argues that America's strategy to contain Iran should be a bigger priority than dealing with Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Hillcrest Elementary School: D'Agostino replies
Albert A. D'Agostino, attorney for the East Ramapo Central School District, offers a commentary piece in which he argues that the sale of Hillcrest Elementary School was properly publicized. D'Agostino writes in reply to a recent editorial on the sale.

Sunday, Sept. 5
State legislators and cars: Editorial
We comment on the third installment of our Albany Bureau's Platinum Legislature, which explores the use of state-owned cars by legislators. We write:

... These free rides are a bipartisan endeavor, with Democrats and Republicans alike driving state-owned Chevrolets, Fords and Buicks, and taking advantage of liberal campaign-finance laws.

Lawmakers defend the expense to taxpayers, saying that allowing such easy access is ultimately cheaper than reimbursing for mileage. Somehow, though, most of the taxpaying-world skips this goodie.


The Oval Office: Cartoon
Matt Davies comments on President Obama's redecoration of the Oval Office in a muted, beige palette. Davies likens the color to the condition of the American economy.

Municipal consolidation: Commentary
Mayor William R. Hanauer of Ossining offers a commentary piece that surveys efforts made by the town and village of Ossining to share services.

‘Achievement Gap': Commentary
Alfred S. Posmantier, formerly of the City College of New York, is the new dean of the School of Education at Mercy College, offers a commentary on strategies to close the ‘achievement gap' that separates African-American and Hispanic students from Asian and white students.

Consolidation forum: Commentary
Sandy Galef, who represents the 90th District in the state Assembly, offers a commentary piece that previews a Sept. 16 forum on municipal consolidation efforts. The forum will be held at Cortlandt Town Hall, 1 Heady St., Cortlandt Manor, from 7-9 p.m.

Tax competition: Commentary
Amy Shales, a senior fellow in economic history at the Council on Foreign Relations and a Bloomberg News columnist, writes on the benefits of tax competition between states.

Monday, Sept. 6
American labor: Commentary
Evelyn Ganzglass, director of work-force development at the Center for Law and Social Policy in Washington, D.C., offers a Labor Day commentary on the need for a skilled American workforce.

Eminent Domain reform: Commentary
Tom Abinati and Jim Maisano, members of the Westchester County Board of Legislators, offer a commentary in which they encourage adoption of a law they've proposed to reform the eminent domain process. They write:

... Our proposed law will prohibit the county from using its powers of eminent domain to take private property for private use, or appropriating county funds for any project in any municipality in Westchester that uses eminent domain solely for economic development, like shopping centers, office space and residential housing. Our law certainly will allow the county to use eminent domain for traditional public uses, such as parkland. The county law, we believe, appropriately balances the need to protect private property owners from the devastating impact of the abuse of eminent domain and the need to facilitate projects that serve genuine public uses. We hope our colleagues, as well as the people of Westchester, will support this important law.

Tuesday, Sept. 7
Stimulus funds and the schools: Editorial
We comment on news that New York schools will receive $608 million as part of President Obama's much-heralded Education Jobs and Medicaid Assistance Act. We write:

...While local school districts welcome the much-needed funding, the money presents more than a math problem for local school boards and administrators. In calculating how to best use the money, and when to use it, school officials need to be economic forecasters and political scientists, too.

The funding can only be used to preserve teaching and other staff positions that so many districts cut during this year's budget-making season. Districts must use it by September 2012. Even though most schools open today, districts still don't have access to the money, because states distribute it and New York's Legislature has yet to meet and vote on the aid package. Plus, questions remain on exactly which jobs can be funded.

Do schools use the money this year to hire back teachers and other staff laid off last year amid budget cuts? Do they bank on next year's budgets looking tighter, and state and federal aid lighter, and invest more of their share of the Education Jobs money then? For each district, the answer is different, depending on their circumstances. ...

Education aid: Commentary
Bernard P. Pierorazio, superintendent of the Yonkers public schools, offers a commentary on the “Race to the Top” funds. Pierorazio argues “that the newest education jobs bill bailout will be of little assistance to those districts where dire financial straits have decimated programs and forced teacher layoffs.”

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Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/07/2010
Ledger - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle | View Clip
09/07/2010
Los Angeles Daily News - Online

HP president and CEO Mark Hurd speaks during a press conference announcing his apology and regret over the investigation leaks September 22, 2006 at the HP headquarters in Palo Alto, California. Hurd was named the new chairman of HP, replacing Patricia Dunn, who resigned amid the investigation leaks scandal. (Photo by John Lee/)

Hewlett-Packard filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop former CEO Mark Hurd from going to work at tech rival Oracle, as the controversy between Hurd and his former employer showed no signs of abating.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting efforts to restrict employees from changing jobs.

But the lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment -- shows that Palo Alto-based HP is not ready sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that is increasingly competing with HP in the

commercial computer market.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

The lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court argues that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed while he was CEO at HP, and which he agreed to follow for two years after he resigned last month in a scandal over his relationship with an HP marketing contractor.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," an HP spokesman said in a brief statement. Hurd and Oracle declined to comment Monday.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant, but it seeks both temporary and permanent orders against Hurd. The suit says Oracle's hiring of Hurd would "put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

While Oracle has not publicly described Hurd's new duties in detail, the HP lawsuit asserts: "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

The suit argues that Hurd, as HP's chief executive for the last five years, was privy to a variety of sensitive information about new products, sales and marketing strategies and even HP competitors. It mentions that, earlier this year, Hurd received a confidential internal assessment of Oracle as a competitor to HP.

But legal experts said California courts have rejected similar arguments as a reason to block employees from changing jobs in other cases. California law specifically does not allow for so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states use to restrict workers from jumping ship to competitors.

Some companies in California have tried to get around that law by focusing on the prospect that a key employee could exploit confidential information after moving to a job with a rival corporation, said Frederick Baron, chairman of the employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," Baron said.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

But if HP may have difficulty winning its case in court, experts said the two companies and Hurd may be motivated to work out a settlement to avoid the cost of litigation. Such a settlement could require Hurd to wait six months or a year before starting his new job, or perhaps restrict him from overseeing certain parts of Oracle's business, the experts said.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at Twitter.com/BrandonBailey.

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Craigslist plays censorship card analysts; Shutting 'adult services' section 'a ploy'
09/07/2010
National Post

SAN FRANCISCO - Craigslist, by shutting off its "adult services' section and slapping a 'censored' label in its place, is engaging in what some analysts describe as a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion.

Since blocking the adult services ads as the Labour Day weekend began -- and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated US$44-million this year -- Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word 'censored' suggests the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over adult ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects websites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's Attorney General from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

"It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,' said Thomas Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. 'It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.'

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to press the company to remove the adult services section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The adult services section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. 'Sorry, no statement,' Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an email message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

"I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,' said Peter Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. 'I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.'

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

"If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,' Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut Attorney General who has spearheaded the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer did not clarify whether the shutdown of the adult section was permanent, or say when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

"Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,' he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has an adult sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they have learned about websites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. 'For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,' said Margaret Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. 'The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speechcommunication. They're not conspirators in crimes.'

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the adult services section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fuelled by the fact that Craigslist stands to lose a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost US$10 to post and US$5 to repost, are expected to bring in US$44.4-million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, says Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Color Photo Tim Shaffer, Reuters Files / Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist chief executive, has used the company's blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has an adult sex ads service, and Craigslist critics.;

Copyright © 2010 New York Times News Service

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HP sues ex-CEO Hurd over new job at Oracle
09/07/2010
Oakland Tribune

SAN JOSE -- Hewlett-Packard filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop former CEO Mark Hurd from going to work at tech rival Oracle, as the controversy between Hurd and his former employer showed no signs of abating.

Legal experts said HP faces an uphill battle in trying to block Hurd from accepting a job as co-president and board member at Oracle, since California courts have a history of rejecting efforts to restrict employees from changing jobs.

But the lawsuit -- filed less than 24 hours after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced Hurd's new appointment -- shows that Palo Alto-based HP is not ready sit quietly while its former top executive takes a senior position at a company that is increasingly competing with HP in the commercial computer market.

"If nothing else, this is a strong shot across the bow," said attorney Larry C. Drapkin, co-chairman of the employment law group at the Los Angeles firm of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp.

The lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court argues that Hurd's work at Oracle would violate a series of confidentiality agreements that he signed while he was CEO at HP, and which he agreed to follow for two years after he resigned last month in a scandal over his relationship with an HP marketing contractor.

"HP intends to enforce those agreements," an HP spokesman said in a brief statement. Hurd and Oracle declined to comment Monday.

The lawsuit does not name Oracle as a defendant, but it seeks both temporary and permanent orders against Hurd. The suit says Oracle's hiring of Hurd would "put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

While Oracle has not publicly described Hurd's new duties in detail, the HP lawsuit asserts "In his new positions, Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

The suit argues that Hurd, as HP's chief executive for the last five years, was privy to a variety of sensitive information about new products, sales and marketing strategies and even HP competitors. It mentions that, earlier this year, Hurd received a confidential internal assessment of Oracle as a competitor to HP.

But legal experts said California courts have rejected similar arguments as a reason to block employees from changing jobs in other cases. California law specifically does not allow for so-called "non-compete" conditions in employment contracts, which companies in other states use to restrict workers from jumping ship to competitors.

Some companies in California have tried to get around that law by focusing on the prospect that a key employee could exploit confidential information after moving to a job with a rival corporation, said Frederick Baron, chairman of the employment law practice at the Cooley law firm in Palo Alto.

"California courts have thus far rejected that argument, and so HP will have an uphill climb," Baron said.

Santa Clara University law professor Eric Goldman agreed. "This comes up, but courts are very skeptical because it affects people's livelihoods."

But if HP may have difficulty winning its case in court, experts said the two companies and Hurd may be motivated to work out a settlement to avoid the cost of litigation. Such a settlement could require Hurd to wait six months or a year before starting his new job, or perhaps restrict him from overseeing certain parts of Oracle's business, the experts said.

Contact Brandon Bailey at 408-920-5022. Follow him at .

Copyright © 2010 The Oakland Tribune. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Four Ways to Live More Ethically | View Clip
09/07/2010
Psychology Today - Online

Just say no to the devil! Four ways to avoid becoming Faust.

In my blog post last week I asked why so many people seem to make the same mistake Faust did in the popular German legend and opera by agreeing to a deal with the Devil. Why do so many people seem to be so ethically challenged? While reading the news, there are too numerous examples to count where politicians, Hollywood celebrities, sport stars, business executives, and others find all sorts of ways to behave unethically making a deal with the Devil that later claims their soul (just like Faust). During my recent blog I asked why is this the case? For example, how did Elliot Spitzer, Bernie Madoff, Roger Clemens, Tiger Wood, Paris Hilton, and so many others find themselves in such a mess regarding their behavior and reputations? This week, I'd like to offer four suggestions on ways to avoid becoming Faust. How to say no to ethical compromises? Keep these four points in mind:

1. You need to repeat your ethical values like a mantra. What do you most value in terms of behavior and ethics? Is it honesty, integrity, compassion, or other principles? In my book, Do the Right Thing: Living Ethically in an Unethical World [http://www.newharbinger.com/bookstore/productdetails.cfm?PC=287], I suggest using the RRICC model. It stands for respect, responsibility, integrity, competence, and concern. Easy to remember. At Santa Clara University (where I teach psychology), the three core values there are what we call the "three C's": competence, conscience, and compassion. Much of both curriculum and extra-curriculum programming at Santa Clara is designed to support the development and maintenance of these three core ethical values. What are your core values that you feel should guide your behavior? Give voice to them and repeat them regularly. Consider them a mantra.

2. You need to surround yourself with like minded people. Watch the company you keep. Social comparison theory as well as observational learning theory well supports the notion that we tend to gravitate towards the behavior of others around us. If your co-workers, neighbors, family members, and peers are behaving unethically, you will likely too. Can you do all that is possible to surround yourself with others who share your ethical values and perspectives?

3. Small compromises today lead to big compromises tomorrow. It's the slippery slope theory. Most people really don't go from ethical behavior to unethical behavior overnight. They make small compromises in their values that lead to bigger compromises later. It's like the old story about the frog sitting in a gradually warming pot where the frog doesn't realize the danger until it is too late because the water temperature increases so gradually.

4. Yes, people will find out. There are no secrets. We live in a world where we are recorded everywhere we go. Viedo cameras are everywhere and every click of the computer mouse and every words typed in an email, on , or on the internet in general is accessible to all one way or another. So, whatever you do in private you have to pretty much convince yourself that it isn't private after all and that someone (e.g., your mother, your father, your spouse, your child, your boss, your friends) will see it one way or another and at some point.

To live ethically and to say no to the devils out there takes work... a lot of work. It takes a lot to not go with the flow and to avoid becoming Faust. But in the end, I have to believe that behaving ethically and committing ourselves to the values that we hold near and dear are worth it. Don't you? So, as the popular Nike commercial says, "just do it" and just say no to the devils that tempt you to compromise your ethical values. I know it is easier said than done but if you keep these four points in mind maybe you'll be more successful with your efforts.

Do you think you can? What do you think?

Why are so many ethically challenged?

Thomas Plante, PhD., ABPP is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Spirituality and Health Institute at Santa Clara University.

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Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/07/2010
Sarasota Herald-Tribune - Online

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

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"Multiple Ways to Salvation": Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments | View Clip
09/06/2010
Academe

Contacts:

Mayra Besosa(Spanish), California State University, San Marcos, co-chair, AAUP Committee on Contingency and the Profession

(760) 696-1580

Marc Bousquet(English), Santa Clara University, co-chair, AAUP Committee on Contingency and the Profession

Until September 7: (819) 441-3416

On this Labor Day, the AAUP released a new report on academic labor. Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments argues that institutions that employ teaching-intensive faculty should hire them and evaluate their teaching through the rigorous system of peer review known as the tenure system.  As the report notes, tenure was designed as a “big tent” to unite faculty of diverse interests and professional responsibilities. It was not designed as a merit badge for research-intensive faculty or as a fence to exclude those with teaching-intensive commitments.

As E. Gordon Gee, the highest-paid university president in the United States, puts it, campus employers must preserve “multiple ways to salvation” inside the tenure system—even at research-intensive institutions.

Before 1970, as today, most full-time faculty appointments were teaching-intensive. Nearly all full-time teaching-intensive positions were on the tenure track. Most faculty who spent most of their time teaching were also campus and professional citizens—with clear roles in shared governance and access to support for research or professional activity.

Today, campus employers have shunted the majority of teaching-intensive positions outside of the tenure system. This has in most cases meant a dramatic shift from “teaching-intensive” appointments to “teaching-only” appointments. As a result, many faculty are now barred from participation in scholarly and institutional governance activities, and have only tenuous relationships to campus and disciplinary peers.

The seismic shift from “teaching-intensive” faculty within the big tent of tenure to “teaching-only” faculty outside of it has a direct impact on student retention and achievement, as a growing body of evidence clearly demonstrates.

“American students deserve the same professionalism in their classrooms that they expect from physicians and police officers,” says Marc Bousquet, co-chair of the AAUP's Committee on Contingency and the Profession, which produced the new report. “In 1970, most undergraduates took nearly all of their classes from tenure-eligible faculty, most with terminal degrees in their fields. This fall, however, at many institutions, a first-year student is more likely to drop out than ever to meet a tenure-track professor.”

The boom in non-tenure-track—and often “part-time”—faculty jobs puts faculty, like many other American workers, in an increasingly insecure and precarious position. “The public should be outraged by the deplorable working conditions imposed on many college teachers,” says Mayra Besosa, co-chair of the AAUP committee. “These working conditions are in violation of basic human rights articulated by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights—for example, the rights to equal pay for equal work, to just and favorable conditions of work, and to protection against unemployment.”

The central question we have to face in connection with this historic change is clear: Should more classroom teaching be done by faculty supported by the rigorous peer scrutiny of the tenure system? Most of the evidence says yes, and a host of diverse voices agree. This view brings together students, faculty, and legislators; the AAUP; and even many administrators. Campuses across the country have taken bold steps to stabilize the crumbling faculty infrastructure. Concerned legislators and some academic administrators have joined faculty associations in calling for dramatic reductions in the reliance on contingent appointments, commonly urging a maximum of 25 percent.

Read the report, which was approved by the Committee on Contingency and the Profession. Or visit the AAUP Web site to learn more about our work on contingent faculty appointments.

The American Association of University Professors is a nonprofit charitable and educational organization that promotes academic freedom by supporting tenure, academic due process, shared governance and standards of quality in higher education. The AAUP has over 48,000 members at colleges and universities throughout the United States.

Inside this section

“Multiple Ways to Salvation”: Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments

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Research aims to stop crime before it starts
09/06/2010
Augusta Chronicle

LOS ANGELES - The future of crime-fighting begins with a story about strawberry Pop-Tarts, bad weather and Wal-Mart.

With a hurricane bearing down on the Florida coast several years ago, the retail giant sent supply trucks into the storm to stock shelves with the frosted pink pastries. The decision to do so had not been made on a whim or a hunch, but by a powerful computer that crunched reams of sales data and found an unusual but undeniable fact When Mother Nature gets angry, people want to eat a lot more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

Officials in the Los Angeles Police Department are using the anecdote to explain a similar but far more complicated idea they and researchers say could revolutionize law enforcement.

"As police departments have gotten better at pushing down crime, we are looking now for the thing that will take us to the next level," Police Chief Charlie Beck said. "I firmly believe predictive policing is it."

Predictive policing is rooted in the notion that it is possible, through sophisticated computer analysis of information about previous crimes, to predict where and when crimes will occur. At universities and technology companies in the U.S. and abroad, scientists are working to develop computer programs that, in the most optimistic scenarios, could enable police to anticipate, and possibly prevent, many types of crime.

Some of the most ambitious work is being done at UCLA, where researchers are studying the ways criminals behave in urban settings.

George Mohler, who recently left UCLA to teach at Santa Clara University, is working to forecast the time and place of crimes using the same mathematical formulas that seismologists use to predict the distribution of aftershocks emanating from an earthquake.

Researcher Martin Short is building computer simulations of criminals roving through city neighborhoods in order to better understand why they tend to cluster in certain areas and how they disperse when police go looking for them.

"The naysayers want you to believe that humans are too complex and too random - that this sort of math can't be done," said Jeff Brantingham, a UCLA anthropologist who is helping to supervise the university's predictive policing project. "But humans are not nearly as random as we think. In a sense, crime is just a physical process, and if you can explain how offenders move and how they mix with their victims, you can understand an incredible amount."

The LAPD has positioned itself at the center of the predictive policing universe, forging ties with the UCLA team and drawing up plans for a large-scale experiment to test whether predictive policing tools work. The department is considered a front-runner to prevail over other big-city agencies in the fall for a $3 million U.S. Justice Department grant to conduct the multiyear tests.

Copyright © 2010 The Augusta Chronicle

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Is blocking sex ads a ploy in fight over free speech? | View Clip
09/06/2010
Bulletin, The

SAN FRANCISCO â Craigs-list, by shutting off its "adult servicesâ section and slapping a "censoredâ label in its place, is engaging in what some analysts describe as a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion.

Since blocking the ads as the Labor Day weekend began â and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year â Craigs-list has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word "censoredâ suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over adult ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigs-listâs side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects websites against liability for what their users post. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolinaâs attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

"It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,â said Thomas Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigs-list. "Itâs certainly the law that theyâre not liable for it, but itâs another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.â

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the adult services section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The adult services section of Craigslist was still blocked in the U.S. on Sunday evening. "Sorry, no statement,â Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslistâs spokeswoman, wrote Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

A permanent fix?

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

"Iâm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,â said Peter Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. "I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.â

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

"If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigs-list, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,â Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has spearheaded the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone Sunday.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

Waging a battle

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslistâs chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslistâs efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has an adult sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslistâs actions on sex ads.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. "For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,â said Margaret Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California.

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Is blocking sex ads a ploy in fight over free speech? | View Clip
09/06/2010
Bulletin, The

By Claire Cain Miller / New York Times News Service Published: September 06. 2010 4:00AM PST

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigs-list, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, is engaging in what some analysts describe as a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion.

Since blocking the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigs-list has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over adult ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigs-list's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects websites against liability for what their users post. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigs-list. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the adult services section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The adult services section of Craigslist was still blocked in the U.S. on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

A permanent fix?

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigs-list, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has spearheaded the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone Sunday.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

Waging a battle

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has an adult sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California.

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AAUP to Universities: Tenure Is Not Just for Researchers | View Clip
09/06/2010
Chronicle of Higher Education - Online, The

In a new report, the Association of American University Professors continues to push for a tenure system that includes contingent faculty members—both full-time and part-time—who are the backbone of the professoriate.

The report, "Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments," released by the association's Committee on Contingency and the Profession, says that tenure "was not designed as a merit badge for research-intensive faculty or as a fence to exclude those with teaching-intensive commitments." Instead, the report calls for bringing non-tenure-track faculty members into the tenure stream as a way to "stabilize the faculty" and outlines various ways to do so that have found success at institutions nationwide.

Marc Bousquet, an associate professor of English at Santa Clara University, and Mayra Besosa, a full-time lecturer in Spanish at California State University at San Marcos, are co-chairs of the committee. Mr. Bousquet, in a written statement, warned that students will ultimately pay for higher education's reliance on contingent faculty.

"In 1970, most undergraduates took nearly all of their class from tenure-eligible faculty, most with terminal degrees in their fields," Mr. Bousquet said. "This fall, however, at many institutions, a first-year student is more likely to drop out than ever to meet a tenure-track professor."

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First US Muslim college opens in California | View Clip
09/06/2010
Ekklesia

First US Muslim college opens in California

As the row continues over an Islamic cultural centre to be sited near to Ground Zero in New York, the first US Muslim college has opened in California.

Joanna Corman writes for ENI/RNS: The Brooklyn native is part of the inaugural class of what Zaytuna's founders hope will be the country's first accredited, four-year Muslim liberal arts college - a flagship of higher learning with an Islamic identity yet open to all faiths, Religion News Service reports.

Faatimah Knight's college decision came down to eight schools where she would have majored in English, or Zaytuna College, where she could study Islamic classical teachings in an environment that embraces all aspects of her Muslim faith.

Knight, 18, chose Zaytuna, she said, because she wants to grow in her faith, learn more about the religion that inspired her parents to convert from Christianity and be able to defend Islam during a time of stepped-up suspicion.

"I want to feel like I'm improving as a person. I want to feel like I'm improving in terms of my character," said Knight. "I'm almost positive that I can only get that here."

An aspiring writer, Knight is one of 15 Zaytuna students who started classes on 24 August.

Zaytuna College grew out of a pilot seminary programme at the Zaytuna Institute, which graduated a handful of students in 2008. Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, an American-born convert from the San Francisco Bay Area who studied Islam abroad, started the institute in 1996, offering continuing education classes in Arabic and Islamic studies.

Yusuf began planning Zaytuna's transition to a full-fledged college two years ago with two colleagues: Imam Zaid Shakir, a Berkeley convert who studied Islam abroad; and Hatem Bazian, a professor at the University of California Berkeley and a Palestinian native who has lived in the Bay Area for nearly 27 years.

The three are among the best-known and most-respected Muslim scholars in America, said Zahra Billoo, the programmes and outreach director at the Council on American-Islamic Relations' San Francisco Bay Area chapter.

The college will seek accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, and founders hope to graduate students who can work in any profession, including serving the Muslim American community as imams, non-profit managers and Islamic school teachers.

Co-founder Bazian said the college is needed because of a lack of native-born Muslim professionals with a strong understanding of their faith and the needs of US Muslims.

"We feel the college is very important in that it provides grounding for the community in its own tradition - not in a sense to create a difference with the larger society, but to actually normalise its presence within the larger society, that there is no contradiction between being an American and being Muslim," Bazian said.

While Muslims have been in the United States for centuries, most migrated here within the last 40 years, with 80 per cent of US Muslims arriving after 1980, said Farid Senzai, a member of Zaytuna's management committee and the research director at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, a Michigan-based think tank focused on US Muslims.

Over several generations, Muslim Americans have built an infrastructure of mosques, schools and advocacy organisations. Now, with a population estimated to range from 2 million to as many as 8 million, and growing financial stability, they are beginning to build academic institutions, Senzai said, just as Roman Catholics and Jews did generations ago.

The college could help bridge the gap between different segments of the community, such as immigrants and native-born Muslims, said CAIR's Billoo. It could also provide ranks of home grown imams to lead the country's estimated 2000 mosques instead of foreign-born leaders who sometimes face cultural, language and generational gaps.

Zaytuna is offering two majors to start: Arabic language, and Islamic law and theology. There are plans to add advanced degrees, adult education classes and professional certificate programmes in areas such as Islamic medical ethics, Islamic finance and religious training for imams and undergraduates.

Zaytuna, which means "olive tree" in Arabic, also hopes to be a vehicle for interfaith dialogue. The college was intentionally planted in progressive Berkeley, an intellectual hub with a sizable Muslim community. The college will be housed at the American Baptist Seminary of the West for five years until founders can establish its own campus.

The college can help promote cross-cultural understanding, when visitors "see it in action", said Senzai, who also teaches political science at Santa Clara University.

"In fact, these kinds of institutions in the long term are absolutely necessary for bridging the divide that currently exists and the misunderstanding that many have about Islam and Muslims," he said.

With acknowledgments to ENI - www.eni.ch

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Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Gainesville Sun - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO ? Craigslist, by shutting off its ?adult services? section and slapping a ?censored? label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began ? and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year ? Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word ?censored? suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist?s side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina?s attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests. ?It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,? said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. ?It?s certainly the law that they?re not liable for it, but it?s another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.? Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the ?adult services? section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children. The ?adult services? section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. ?Sorry, no statement,? Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist?s spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads. ?I?m very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,? said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. ?I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.? Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist. ?If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,? Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist?s outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law. ?Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,? he said. ?Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.? Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: ?We?re taking it at face value. I think it?s a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.? But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist?s intentions. ?Certainly because of the way they did it,? she said, ?it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.? For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist?s chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist?s efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups. ?Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,? he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist?s actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: ?There is a class of ?journalists? known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.? And he wrote a sarcastic post titled ?Advocate Indeed? in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites? immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. ?For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,? said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. ?The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They?re not conspirators in crimes.? The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the ?adult services? section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist?s annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner. ?It would surprise me if they didn?t try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,? said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. ?Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn?t seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.?

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Gainesville Sun - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO ? Craigslist, by shutting off its ?adult services? section and slapping a ?censored? label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began ? and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year ? Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word ?censored? suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist?s side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina?s attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests. ?It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,? said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. ?It?s certainly the law that they?re not liable for it, but it?s another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.? Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the ?adult services? section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children. The ?adult services? section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. ?Sorry, no statement,? Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist?s spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads. ?I?m very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,? said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. ?I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.? Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist. ?If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,? Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist?s outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law. ?Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,? he said. ?Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.? Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: ?We?re taking it at face value. I think it?s a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.? But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist?s intentions. ?Certainly because of the way they did it,? she said, ?it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.? For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist?s chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist?s efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups. ?Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,? he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist?s actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: ?There is a class of ?journalists? known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.? And he wrote a sarcastic post titled ?Advocate Indeed? in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites? immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. ?For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,? said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. ?The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They?re not conspirators in crimes.? The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the ?adult services? section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist?s annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner. ?It would surprise me if they didn?t try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,? said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. ?Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn?t seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.?

Return to Top



Some see a ploy as Craigslist blocks sex ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Herald-Journal

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Ledger - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO Craigslist, by shutting off its adult services section and slapping a censored label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word censored suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslists side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolinas attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests. It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion, said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. Its certainly the law that theyre not liable for it, but its another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways. Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the adult services section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children. The adult services section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. Sorry, no statement, Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslists spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads. Im very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent, said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction. Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist. If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest, Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslists outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law. Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable, he said. Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt. Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: Were taking it at face value. I think its a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general. But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslists intentions. Certainly because of the way they did it, she said, it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle. For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslists chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslists efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups. Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors, he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslists actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: There is a class of journalists known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media. And he wrote a sarcastic post titled Advocate Indeed in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully, said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. Theyre not conspirators in crimes. The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the adult services section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslists annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner. It would surprise me if they didnt try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income, said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesnt seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Lexington Dispatch - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
New York Times - Online

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

Louise Story contributed reporting from New York.

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Stopping crime before it starts | View Clip
09/06/2010
North County Times - Online

LOS ANGELES -- The future of crime fighting begins with a story about strawberry Pop Tarts, bad weather and Walmart.

With a hurricane bearing down on the Florida coast several years ago, the retail giant sent supply trucks into the storm to stock shelves with the frosted pink pastries. The decision to do so was not made on a whim or a hunch, but by a powerful computer that crunched reams of sales data and found an unusual but undeniable fact: When Mother Nature gets angry, people want to eat a lot more strawberry Pop Tarts.

Officials in the Los Angeles Police Department are using the anecdote to explain a similar but far more complicated idea that they and researchers say could revolutionize law enforcement.

"As police departments have gotten better at pushing down crime, we are looking now for the thing that will take us to the next level," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said. "I firmly believe predictive policing is it."

Predictive policing is rooted in the notion that it is possible, through sophisticated computer analysis of information about previous crimes, to predict where and when crimes will occur. At universities and technology companies in the U.S. and abroad, scientists are working to develop computer programs that, in the most optimistic scenarios, could enable police to anticipate, and possibly prevent, many types of crime.

Some of the most ambitious work is being done at UCLA, where researchers are studying the ways criminals behave in urban settings.

One, who recently left UCLA to teach at Santa Clara University south of San Francisco, is working to forecast the time and place of crimes using the same mathematical formulas that seismologists use to predict the distribution of aftershocks emanating from an earthquake.

Another builds computer simulations of criminals roving through city neighborhoods in order to better understand why they tend to cluster in certain areas and how they disperse when police go looking for them.

"The naysayers want you to believe that humans are too complex and too random ---- that this sort of math can't be done," said Jeff Brantingham, a UCLA anthropologist who is helping to supervise the university's predictive policing project.

"But humans are not nearly as random as we think," he said. "In a sense, crime is just a physical process, and if you can explain how offenders move and how they mix with their victims, you can understand an incredible amount."

The LAPD has positioned itself aggressively at the center of the predictive policing universe, forging ties with the UCLA team and drawing up plans for a large-scale experiment to test whether predictive policing tools work. The department is considered a front-runner to prevail over other big-city agencies in the fall for a $3 million U.S. Justice Department grant to conduct the multiyear tests.

LAPD officials have begun to imagine what a department built around predictive tools would look like.

Automated, detailed crime forecasts tailored to each of the department's 21 area stations would be streamed several times a day to commanders, who would use them to make decisions about where to deploy officers in the field. For patrol officers on the streets, mapping software on in-car computers and hand-held devices would show continuous updates on the probability of various crimes occurring in the vicinity, along with the addresses and background information about paroled ex-convicts living in the area.

In turn, information gathered by officers from suspects, witnesses and victims would be fed in real time into a technology nerve center where predictive computer programs churn through huge crime databases.

Helping short-handed departments

If any of this becomes reality, it will be in large part because of Lt. Sean Malinowski, a bookish, soft-spoken former Fulbright scholar who oversees the department's crime analysis unit. With the blessing of former Chief William J. Bratton and now Beck, Malinowski has spent the last few years immersing himself in the world of predictive technologies.

In law enforcement circles, where confusion and skepticism about predictive policing runs deep, he has established himself as one of only a few people who knows both what it is to be a cop and how predictive technology could fit into the job. Malinowski was recently summoned to Washington, D.C., by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who wanted a tutorial on the topic.

It is not by chance that the LAPD is pursuing predictive technologies. No city in the U.S. stands to gain more than Los Angeles.

The city is one of the most severely underpoliced in the country, with just shy of 10,000 police officers on its payroll. At any given time, only a fraction of them are on duty, spread across 469 square miles that are home to more than 4 million inhabitants. Predictive tools, if they work, would allow the LAPD to get more out of its meager force.

Proactive vs. reactive

The use of crime data by police agencies is nothing new. Many big-city departments today make decisions on how to deploy officers based in part on computer mapping programs that track crime patterns and hot spots as they develop.

The LAPD and other agencies have become adept enough at channeling this flow of information from officers in the field that crimes committed in the evening are included on the next day's crime maps.

No matter how quickly crimes are plotted, however, these mapping programs leave cops stuck in reaction mode. They show where crimes have occurred in the past, but police still must make educated guesses about where future crimes will occur.

George Mohler and Martin Short believe they can change that.

In a yet-to-be-published research paper he wrote while at UCLA, Mohler makes the case that the time and place of past crimes can be used to determine where and when future crimes are most likely to occur. To do this, he argues, police need to start thinking of crimes the way seismologists think of earthquakes and aftershocks.

Mohler's theory stems from a peculiar aspect of crime. Much as an earthquake sets off aftershocks, some types of crimes have a contagious quality to them.

When a home is burglarized, for example, the same house and others in its immediate surroundings are at much greater risk of being victimized in the days that follow. The phenomenon is called an exact or near-repeat effect.

The same dynamic can explain the way rival gangs retaliate against one another. And, although it is harder to pin down in more complex crimes that are motivated by passion or other emotions, experts believe it holds there as well.

Mohler wasn't very interested in what is it is about criminals that makes this so. He focused instead on adapting the math formulas and computer programs that seismologists use to calculate the probability of aftershocks, fitting them to crime patterns. (Aftershocks can occur hundreds of miles from an epicenter and many months after an earthquake, while the elevated risk of crimes tends to subside over a matter of weeks and several city blocks.)

Using LAPD data, he tested his computer model on several thousand burglaries that occurred in a large section of the San Fernando Valley throughout 2004 and 2005. The results, Mohler said, were far more effective than anything on the market today.

The program divided the Valley area into patrol zones that were each roughly the size of several neighborhood blocks and then calculated which zones had the highest probability of experiencing burglaries the next day.

In one test, in which Mohler assumed there were enough cops to patrol 10 percent of the area, the model accurately identified the zones where the officers should have gone in order to thwart about a quarter of all the burglaries that occurred that day.

What leads to crime

Mohler's approach is a bare-bones dissection of time and space. His former officemate is using high-level math to get inside criminals' minds.

Martin Short earned a doctorate in physics but, like Mohler, he spends much of his time thinking about crime. His research is based on a foundational, common-sense theory in criminology. In it, little attention is given to the social, economic or psychological factors ---- such as poverty, revenge, greed ---- that can motivate someone to commit a crime. Instead, criminals are viewed as rational decision-makers who commit crimes only when they come across opportunities that meet certain criteria.

For a crime to occur, the theory holds, a would-be criminal must find a target that is sufficiently vulnerable to attack and that offers an appealing payout. An empty house with no alarm on a poorly lighted street, for example, has a much higher chance of being burglarized than one with a barking dog on a busy block.

Short's computer models simulate this decision-making process and give him the chance to decipher how crime clusters form in certain areas that criminals consider prime for plunder. The present models are random and theoretical and therefore not capable of real-world predictions. But with enough funding and computer power, Short said, a far more sophisticated model could be built to replicate actual buildings in real neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Then, he suggested, the decisions of the computerized criminals could be used to predict the movements of actual criminals.

Like any radical, unproven idea, predictive policing has its share of skeptics. Some question whether any amount of number-crunching can replace the intuition and street smarts that a cop develops over time.

"There is the science of policing and there is the art of policing," said LAPD Deputy Chief Michael Downing, who relies heavily on technology as the head of the department's counterterrorism efforts, but remains wary of predictive policing.

"It is really important that we learn how to blend the two. If it becomes all about the science, I worry we'll lose the important nuances," he said.

Obstacles remain

It remains to be seen whether work like Mohler's and Short's can translate into helping cops make day-to-day decisions. The science has progressed only so far.

Much of the work at UCLA and other universities focuses on burglaries, because there are a lot of them and their times and locations are easy to pin down. Building predictive tools capable of addressing rarer and more complex crimes, such as homicides and rapes, for example, will be far more complex.

Malinowski knows as well that the LAPD will have to overcome significant obstacles. Perhaps most pressing is the need to dramatically upgrade the department's technology infrastructure and improve the way it collects crime data.

And there is a public relations battle that must be won. Malinowski is trying to pre-empt the likely concerns of civil rights advocates who worry that predictive policing could be used to profile and target individuals for future crimes. He is quick to say that the technology will not turn the city into a real-life version of "Minority Report," a 2002 science fiction film in which cops arrest people for crimes they are about to commit.

"This will be the opposite of a dragnet, where we just go out and pick up everybody because they're on a certain street corner at the wrong time. We'll be basing our decision on facts. It will be dispassionate," he said. "We still have a Constitution and we're still going to be arresting people based on probable cause, not on the probability that they'll commit a crime."

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Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads (Today) | View Clip
09/06/2010
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Online

SAN FRANCISCO -- Craigslist, by shutting off its "adult services" section and slapping a "censored" label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began -- and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year -- Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word "censored" suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

"It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion," said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. "It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways."

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the "adult services" section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The "adult services" section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. "Sorry, no statement," Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

"I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent," said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. "I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction."

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

"If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest," Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

"Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable," he said. "Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt."

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: "We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general."

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. "Certainly because of the way they did it," she said, "it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle."

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

"Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors," he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: "There is a class of 'journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media."

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled "Advocate Indeed" in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. "For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully," said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. "The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes."

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the "adult services" section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

"It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income," said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. "Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit."

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Times-News - Online

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

Return to Top



Some See a Ploy as Craigslist Blocks Sex Ads | View Clip
09/06/2010
Tuscaloosa News - Online, The

SAN FRANCISCO — Craigslist, by shutting off its “adult services” section and slapping a “censored” label in its place, may be engaging in a high-stakes stunt to influence public opinion, some analysts say.

Since blocking access to the ads as the Labor Day weekend began — and suspending a revenue stream that could bring in an estimated $44 million this year — Craigslist has refused to discuss its motivations. But using the word “censored” suggests that the increasingly combative company is trying to draw attention to its fight with state attorneys general over sex ads and to issues of free speech on the Internet.

The law has been on Craigslist's side. The federal Communications Decency Act protects Web sites against liability for what their users post on the sites. And last year, the efforts of attorneys general were stymied when a federal judge blocked South Carolina's attorney general from prosecuting Craigslist executives for listings that resulted in prostitution arrests.

“It certainly appears to be a statement about how they feel about being judged in the court of public opinion,” said Thomas R. Burke, a First Amendment lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine who specializes in Internet law and does not work for Craigslist. “It's certainly the law that they're not liable for it, but it's another matter if the attorneys general are saying change your ways.”

Attorneys general and advocacy groups have continued to pressure the company to remove the “adult services” section. A letter from 17 state attorneys general dated Aug. 24 demanded that Craigslist close the section, contending that it helped facilitate prostitution and the trafficking of women and children.

The “adult services” section of Craigslist was still blocked in the United States on Sunday evening. “Sorry, no statement,” Susan MacTavish Best, Craigslist's spokeswoman, wrote on Sunday in response to an e-mail message.

Analysts said that if the block was a temporary statement of protest, it could backfire because of the avalanche of news coverage that the site had received for taking down the ads.

“I'm very convinced that this is permanent, even if it was not their intention to make it permanent,” said Peter M. Zollman, founding principal of the Advanced Interactive Media Group, a consulting firm that follows Craigslist closely. “I think it will be difficult, if not impossible, for them to go back and reopen that section without really running into a buzzsaw of negative publicity and reaction.”

Attorneys general in several states said they had so far been unable to get any information from Craigslist.

“If this announcement is a stunt or a ploy, it will only redouble our determination to pursue this issue with Craigslist, because they would be in a sense be thumbing their nose at the public interest,” Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general who has headed the campaign against Craigslist, said in an interview by phone on Sunday.

Mr. Blumenthal said Craigslist's outside lawyer had been in touch with his office, but that the lawyer had not clarified whether the shutdown of the section was permanent, or said when Craigslist might make a statement.

Even though courts have said that Craigslist is protected under federal law, Mr. Blumenthal said part of his mission was to rally public support to change federal law.

“Raising public awareness is extraordinarily important, because it increases support for changes in the law that will hold them accountable,” he said. “Their view of the law, which is blanket immunity for every site on the Internet, never has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court, and I think there is some serious doubt.”

Richard Cordray, the Ohio attorney general, said in an interview by phone on Sunday: “We're taking it at face value. I think it's a step forward, maybe grudging, in response to the efforts of the attorneys general.”

But Lisa Madigan, the attorney general of Illinois, was more skeptical about Craigslist's intentions. “Certainly because of the way they did it,” she said, “it leaves an open question as to whether this is truly the end of adult services on Craigslist or if this is just a continuing battle.”

For a site that prides itself on being a neighborly town square, Craigslist has been increasingly pugnacious in response to its critics.

Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, has written screeds on the company blog explaining and defending Craigslist's efforts to combat sex crimes, including manually screening sex ads and meeting with advocacy groups.

“Craigslist is committed to being socially responsible, and when it comes to adult services ads, that includes aggressively combating violent crime and human rights violations, including human trafficking and the exploitation of minors,” he wrote last month.

But he also uses the blog to lash out at eBay, an investor and a competitor that also has a sex ads service, and Craigslist critics and reporters who question Craigslist's actions on sex ads.

Last month, Amber Lyon of CNN reported about sex ads on Craigslist and questioned Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist and who is no longer a manager at the company, outside a conference where he spoke about a different topic.

In a blog post addressed to Ms. Lyon, Mr. Buckmaster responded: “There is a class of ‘journalists' known for gratuitously trashing respected organizations and individuals, ignoring readily available facts in favor of rank sensationalism and self-promotion. They work for tabloid media.”

And he wrote a sarcastic post titled “Advocate Indeed” in response to a television appearance by Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a nonprofit group that has urged Craigslist to shut the sex ads section.

Though sex ads on Craigslist are the most salacious example of the debate over free speech on the Internet, it is a battle being waged across the Web. Yelp, the review site for local businesses, has been repeatedly sued by small businesses for what its users write. The suits have been dismissed by courts citing the Communications Decency Act or withdrawn by defendants once they learned about Web sites' immunity, said Vince Sollitto, a Yelp spokesman.

Some Internet law experts say the issue strikes at the heart of free speech. “For the government to intervene in Internet communication, it has to do that very carefully,” said Margaret M. Russell, a law professor at Santa Clara University in California. “The ultimate goal, public safety, is really important, but these are venues of free speech communication. They're not conspirators in crimes.”

The erotic services categories are still accessible on Craigslist sites outside the United States, and the personals section of the site is still active. Craigslist has said that if it takes down the “adult services” section, sex ads will simply migrate to other parts of the site.

Doubts about whether the block on the sex ads section is permanent are fueled by the prospect of Craigslist losing a significant amount of money. The ads, which cost $10 to post and $5 to repost, are expected to bring in $44.4 million this year, about a third of Craigslist's annual revenue, according to the Advanced Interactive Media Group.

Still, it is difficult to predict the motives of the company, which employs about 30 people and operates in a quirky, opaque and at times petulant manner.

“It would surprise me if they didn't try to find a workable solution to reintroduce some of that income,” said M. Ryan Calo, a senior research fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “Although, that said, Craigslist is not your typical company in the sense that it doesn't seem to be exclusively motivated by profit.”

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Craigslist Move to Pull Ads Won't End Fight | View Clip
09/06/2010
Wall Street Journal

...debate over whether and how a site like Craigslist should screen for ads that may be advertising illegal services. "I can't think of any serious legal exposure Craigslist faced from the adult-services category," said Eric Goldman, an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. In a number of legal challenges, Craigslist and other sites including Yelp have shielded themselves against lawsuits involving content by citing the Communications Decency Act. That federal law has been...

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Stopping crime before it starts | View Clip
09/05/2010
Belleville News-Democrat - Online

LOS ANGELES -- The future of crime fighting begins with a story about strawberry Pop Tarts, bad weather and Wal-Mart.

With a hurricane bearing down on the Florida coast several years ago, the retail giant sent supply trucks into the storm to stock shelves with the frosted pink pastries. The decision to do so had not been made on a whim or a hunch, but by a powerful computer that crunched reams of sales data and found an unusual but undeniable fact: When Mother Nature gets angry, people want to eat a lot more strawberry Pop Tarts.

Officials in the Los Angeles Police Department are using the anecdote to explain a similar but far more complicated idea that they and researchers say could revolutionize law enforcement.

"As police departments have gotten better at pushing down crime, we are looking now for the thing that will take us to the next level," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said. "I firmly believe predictive policing is it."

Predictive policing is rooted in the notion that it is possible, through sophisticated computer analysis of information about previous crimes, to predict where and when crimes will occur. At universities and technology companies in the U.S. and abroad, scientists are working to develop computer programs that, in the most optimistic scenarios, could enable police to anticipate, and possibly prevent, many types of crime.

Some of the most ambitious work is being done at UCLA, where researchers are studying the ways criminals behave in urban settings.

One, who recently left UCLA to teach at Santa Clara University south of San Francisco, is working to forecast the time and place of crimes using the same mathematical formulas that seismologists use to predict the distribution of aftershocks emanating from an earthquake.

Another builds computer simulations of criminals roving through city neighborhoods in order to better understand why they tend to cluster in certain areas and how they disperse when police go looking for them.

"The naysayers want you to believe that humans are too complex and too random - that this sort of math can't be done," said Jeff Brantingham, a UCLA anthropologist who is helping to supervise the university's predictive policing project.

"But humans are not nearly as random as we think," Brantingham said. "In a sense, crime is just a physical process, and if you can explain how offenders move and how they mix with their victims, you can understand an incredible amount."

The LAPD has positioned itself aggressively at the center of the predictive policing universe, forging ties with the UCLA team and drawing up plans for a large-scale experiment to test whether predictive policing tools work. The department is considered a front-runner to prevail over other big-city agencies in the fall for a $3 million U.S. Justice Department grant to conduct the multiyear tests.

LAPD officials have begun to imagine what a department built around predictive tools would look like.

Automated, detailed crime forecasts tailored to each of the department's 21 area stations would be streamed several times a day to commanders, who would use them to make decisions about where to deploy officers in the field. For patrol officers on the streets, mapping software on in-car computers and hand-held devices would show continuous updates on the probability of various crimes occurring in the vicinity, along with the addresses and background information about paroled ex-convicts living in the area. In turn, information gathered by officers from suspects, witnesses and victims would be fed in real time into a technology nerve center where predictive computer programs churn through huge crime databases.

If any of this becomes reality, it will be in large part because of Lt. Sean Malinowski, a bookish, soft-spoken former Fulbright scholar who oversees the department's crime analysis unit. With the blessing of former Chief William J. Bratton and now Beck, Malinowski has spent the last few years immersing himself in the world of predictive technologies.

In law enforcement circles, where confusion and skepticism about predictive policing runs deep, he has established himself as one of only a few people who knows both what it is to be a cop and how predictive technology could fit into the job. Malinowski was recently summoned to Washington, D.C., by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who wanted a tutorial on the topic.

It is not by chance that the LAPD is pursuing predictive technologies. No city in the U.S. stands to gain more than Los Angeles.

The city is one of the most severely under-policed in the country, with just shy of 10,000 police officers on its payroll. At any given time, only a fraction of them are on duty, spread across 469 square miles that are home to more than 4 million inhabitants. Predictive tools, if they work, would allow the LAPD to get more out of its meager force.

The use of crime data by police agencies is nothing new. Many big-city departments today make decisions on how to deploy officers based, in part, on computer mapping programs that track crime patterns and hot spots as they develop.

The LAPD and other agencies have become adept enough at channeling this flow of information from officers in the field that crimes committed in the evening are included on the next day's crime maps.

No matter how quickly crimes are plotted, however, these mapping programs leave cops stuck in reaction mode. They show where crimes have occurred in the past, but police still must make educated guesses about where future crimes will occur.

George Mohler and Martin Short believe they can change that.

In a yet-to-be-published research paper he wrote while at UCLA, Mohler makes the case that the time and place of past crimes can be used to determine where and when future crimes are most likely to occur. To do this, he argues, police need to start thinking of crimes the way seismologists think of earthquakes and aftershocks.

Mohler's theory stems from a peculiar aspect of crime. Much as an earthquake sets off aftershocks, some types of crimes have a contagious quality to them.

When a home is burglarized, for example, the same house and others in its immediate surroundings are at much greater risk of being victimized in the days that follow. The phenomenon is called an exact or near-repeat effect.

The same dynamic can explain the way rival gangs retaliate against one another. And, although it is harder to pin down in more complex crimes that are motivated by passion or other emotions, experts believe it holds there as well.

Mohler wasn't very interested in what is it is about criminals that makes this so. He focused instead on adapting the math formulas and computer programs that seismologists use to calculate the probability of aftershocks, fitting them to crime patterns. (Aftershocks can occur hundreds of miles from an epicenter and many months after an earthquake, while the elevated risk of crimes tends to subside over a matter of weeks and several city blocks.)

Using LAPD data, he tested his computer model on several thousand burglaries that occurred in a large section of the San Fernando Valley throughout 2004 and 2005. The results, Mohler said, were far more effective than anything on the market today.

The program divided the Valley area into patrol zones that were each roughly the size of several neighborhood blocks and then calculated which zones had the highest probability of experiencing burglaries the next day.

In one test, in which Mohler assumed there were enough cops to patrol 10 percent of the area, the model accurately identified the zones where the officers should have gone in order to thwart about a quarter of all the burglaries that occurred that day.

Mohler's approach is a bare-bones dissection of time and space. His former officemate is using high-level math to get inside criminals' minds.

Martin Short earned a doctorate in physics but, like Mohler, he spends much of his time thinking about crime. His research is based on a foundational, common-sense theory in criminology. In it, little attention is given to the social, economic or psychological factors - such as poverty, revenge, greed - that can motivate someone to commit a crime. Instead, criminals are viewed as rational decision-makers who commit crimes only when they come across opportunities that meet certain criteria.

For a crime to occur, the theory holds, a would-be criminal must find a target that is sufficiently vulnerable to attack and that offers an appealing payout. An empty house with no alarm on a poorly lighted street, for example, has a much higher chance of being burglarized than one with a barking dog on a busy block.

Short's computer models simulate this decision-making process and give him the chance to decipher how crime clusters form in certain areas that criminals consider prime for plunder. The present models are random and theoretical and therefore not capable of real-world predictions. But with enough funding and computer power, Short said, a far more sophisticated model could be built to replicate actual buildings in real neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Then, he suggested, the decisions of the computerized criminals could be used to predict the movements of actual criminals.

Like any radical, unproven idea, predictive policing has its share of skeptics. Some question whether any amount of number-crunching can replace the intuition and street smarts that a cop develops over time.

"There is the science of policing and there is the art of policing," said LAPD Deputy Chief Michael Downing, who relies heavily on technology as the head the department's counterterrorism efforts but remains wary of predictive policing.

"It is really important that we learn how to blend the two. If it becomes all about the science, I worry we'll lose the important nuances," he said.

It remains to be seen whether work like Mohler's and Short's can translate into helping cops make day-to-day decisions. The science has progressed only so far.

Much of the work at UCLA and other universities focuses on burglaries, because there are a lot of them and their times and locations are easy to pin down. Building predictive tools capable of addressing rarer and more complex crimes, such as homicides and rapes, for example, will be far more complex.

Malinowski knows as well that the LAPD will have to overcome significant obstacles. Perhaps most pressing is the need to dramatically upgrade the department's technology infrastructure and improve the way it collects crime data.

And there is a public relations battle that must be won. Malinowski is trying to pre-empt the likely concerns of civil rights advocates who worry that predictive policing could be used to profile and target individuals for future crimes. He is quick to say that the technology will not turn the city into a real-life version of "Minority Report," a 2002 science fiction film in which cops arrest people for crimes they are about to commit.

"This will be the opposite of a dragnet, where we just go out and pick up everybody because they're on a certain street corner at the wrong time. We'll be basing our decision on facts. It will be dispassionate," he said. "We still have a Constitution and we're still going to be arresting people based on probable cause, not on the probability that they'll commit a crime."

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Police working to predict crime
09/05/2010
Charleston Gazette, The

LOS ANGELES - The future of crime fighting begins with a story about strawberry Pop Tarts, bad weather and Wal-Mart.

With a hurricane bearing down on the Florida coast several years ago, the retail giant sent supply trucks into the storm to stock shelves with the frosted pink pastries. The decision to do so had not been made on a whim or a hunch, but by a powerful computer that crunched reams of sales data and found an unusual but undeniable fact When Mother Nature gets angry, people want to eat a lot more strawberry Pop Tarts.

Officials in the Los Angeles Police Department are using the anecdote to explain a similar but far more complicated idea that they and researchers say could revolutionize law enforcement.

"As police departments have gotten better at pushing down crime, we are looking now for the thing that will take us to the next level," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said. "I firmly believe predictive policing is it."

Predictive policing is rooted in the notion that it is possible, through sophisticated computer analysis of information about previous crimes, to predict where and when crimes will occur. At universities and technology companies in the United States and abroad, scientists are working to develop computer programs that, in the most optimistic scenarios, could enable police to anticipate, and possibly prevent, many types of crime.

Some of the most ambitious work is being done at UCLA, where researchers are studying the ways criminals behave in urban settings.

One, who recently left UCLA to teach at Santa Clara University south of San Francisco, is working to forecast the time and place of crimes using the same mathematical formulas that seismologists use to predict the distribution of aftershocks emanating from an earthquake.

Another builds computer simulations of criminals roving through city neighborhoods in order to better understand why they tend to cluster in certain areas and how they disperse when police go looking for them.

"The naysayers want you to believe that humans are too complex and too random - that this sort of math can't be done," said Jeff Brantingham, a UCLA anthropologist who helps supervise the university's predictive-policing project, "but humans are not nearly as random as we think. In a sense, crime is just a physical process, and if you can explain how offenders move and how they mix with their victims, you can understand an incredible amount."

The LAPD has positioned itself aggressively at the center of the predictive-policing universe, forging ties with the UCLA team and drawing up plans for a large-scale experiment to test whether predictive-policing tools work. The department is considered a front-runner to prevail this fall over other big-city agencies for a $3 million U.S. Justice Department grant to conduct the multiyear tests.

LAPD officials have begun to imagine what a department built around predictive tools would look like.

Automated, detailed crime forecasts tailored to each of the department's 21 stations would be streamed several times a day to commanders, who would use them to make decisions about where to deploy officers in the field. For patrol officers on the streets, mapping software on in-car computers and hand-held devices would show continuous updates on the probability of various crimes occurring in the vicinity, along with the addresses and background information about paroled ex-convicts living in the area. In turn, information gathered by officers from suspects, witnesses and victims would be fed in real time into a technology nerve center where predictive computer programs churn through huge crime databases.

LAPD at the forefront

If any of this becomes reality, it will be in large part because of Lt. Sean Malinowski, a bookish, soft-spoken former Fulbright scholar who oversees the department's crime analysis unit. With the blessing of former Chief William J. Bratton, and now Beck, Malinowski has spent the past few years immersing himself in the world of predictive technologies.

In law enforcement circles, where confusion and skepticism about predictive policing runs deep, he has established himself as one of only a few people who know what it is to be a cop and how predictive technology could fit into the job. Malinowski recently was summoned to Washington, D.C., by Attorney General Eric Holder, who wanted a tutorial on the topic.

It is not by chance that the LAPD is pursuing predictive technologies. No city in the United States stands to gain more than Los Angeles.

The city is one of the most severely under-policed in the country, with just shy of 10,000 police officers on its payroll. At any given time, only a fraction of them are on duty, spread across 469 square miles that are home to more than 4 million inhabitants. Predictive tools, if they work, would allow the LAPD to get more out of its small force.

Crime is contagious

The use of crime data by police agencies is nothing new. Many big-city departments today make decisions on how to deploy officers based, in part, on computer mapping programs that track crime patterns and hot spots as they develop.

The LAPD and other agencies have become adept enough at channeling this flow of information from officers in the field that crimes committed in the evening are included on the next day's crime maps.

No matter how quickly crimes are plotted, though, these mapping programs leave cops stuck in reaction mode. They show where crimes have occurred in the past, but police still must make educated guesses about where future crimes will occur.

George Mohler and Martin Short believe they can change that.

In a yet-to-be-published research paper he wrote while at UCLA, Mohler makes the case that the time and place of past crimes can be used to determine where and when future crimes most likely will occur. To do this, he argues, police need to start thinking of crimes the way seismologists think of earthquakes and aftershocks.

Mohler's theory stems from a peculiar aspect of crime. Much as an earthquake sets off aftershocks, some types of crimes have a contagious quality to them.

When a home is burglarized, for example, the same house and others in its immediate surroundings are at much greater risk of being victimized in the days that follow. The phenomenon is called an exact or near-repeat effect.

The same dynamic can explain the way rival gangs retaliate against one another. Also, although it is harder to pin down in more complex crimes that are motivated by passion or other emotions, experts believe it holds there, as well.

Mohler wasn't very interested in what it is about criminals that makes this so. He focused instead on adapting the math formulas and computer programs that seismologists use to calculate the probability of aftershocks, fitting them to crime patterns. (Aftershocks can occur hundreds of miles from an epicenter and many months after an earthquake, while the elevated risk of crimes tends to subside over a matter of weeks and several city blocks.)

Using LAPD data, he tested his computer model on several thousand burglaries that occurred in a large section of the San Fernando Valley through 2004 and 2005. The results, Mohler said, were far more effective than anything on the market today.

The program divided the Valley area into patrol zones that were each roughly the size of several neighborhood blocks and then calculated which zones had the highest probability of experiencing burglaries the next day.

In one test, in which Mohler assumed there were enough cops to patrol 10 percent of the area, the model accurately identified the zones where the officers should have gone to thwart about a quarter of all the burglaries that occurred that day.

What about civil rights?

It remains to be seen whether work like Mohler's and Short's can help cops make day-to-day decisions. The science has progressed only so far.

There also is a public relations battle that must be won. Malinowski is trying to pre-empt the likely concerns of civil rights advocates who worry that predictive policing could be used to profile and target individuals for future crimes. He is quick to say that the technology will not turn the city into a real-life version of "Minority Report," a 2002 science fiction film in which cops arrest people for crimes they are about to commit.

"This will be the opposite of a dragnet, where we just go out and pick up everybody because they're on a certain street corner at the wrong time. We'll be basing our decision on facts. It will be dispassionate," he said. "We still have a Constitution, and we're still going to be arresting people based on probable cause, not on the probability that they'll commit a crime."

MCT photo

Copyright © 2010 Charleston Newspapers

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Stopping crime before it starts | View Clip
09/05/2010
Charlotte Observer - Online

The future of crime fighting begins with a story about strawberry Pop-Tarts, bad weather and Wal-Mart.

With a hurricane bearing down on the Florida coast several years ago, the retail giant sent supply trucks into the storm to stock shelves with the frosted pink pastries. The decision to do so had not been made on a whim or a hunch, but by a powerful computer that crunched reams of sales data and found an unusual but undeniable fact: When Mother Nature gets angry, people want to eat a lot more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

Officials in the Los Angeles Police Department are using the anecdote to explain a similar but far more complicated idea that they and researchers say could revolutionize law enforcement.

"As police departments have gotten better at pushing down crime, we are looking now for the thing that will take us to the next level," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said.

Predictive policing is rooted in the notion that it is possible, through sophisticated computer analysis of information about previous crimes, to predict where and when crimes will occur. At universities and technology companies in the U.S. and abroad, scientists are working to develop computer programs that, in the most optimistic scenarios, could enable police to anticipate, and possibly prevent, many types of crime.

Some of the most ambitious work is being done at UCLA, where researchers are studying the ways criminals behave in urban settings.

One, who recently left UCLA to teach at Santa Clara University south of San Francisco, is working to forecast the time and place of crimes using the same mathematical formulas that seismologists use to predict the distribution of aftershocks of an earthquake.

Another builds computer simulations of criminals roving through city neighborhoods in order to better understand why they tend to cluster in certain areas and how they disperse when police go looking for them.

"Humans are not nearly as random as we think," said Jeff Brantingham, UCLA anthropolgist surpervising the project. "In a sense, crime is just a physical process, and if you can explain how offenders move and how they mix with their victims, you can understand an incredible amount."

The LAPD has positioned itself aggressively at the center of the predictive policing universe, forging ties with the UCLA team and drawing up plans for a large-scale experiment to test whether predictive policing tools work. The department is considered a front-runner to prevail over other big-city agencies in the fall for a $3 million U.S. Justice Department grant to conduct the multiyear tests.

LAPD officials have begun to imagine what a department built around predictive tools would look like.

Automated, detailed crime forecasts tailored to each of the department's 21 area stations would be streamed several times a day to commanders, who would use them to make decisions about where to deploy officers in the field. For patrol officers on the streets, mapping software on in-car computers and hand-held devices would show continuous updates on the probability of various crimes occurring in the vicinity, along with the addresses and background information about paroled ex-convicts living in the area. In turn, information gathered by officers from suspects, witnesses and victims would be fed in real time into a technology nerve center where predictive computer programs churn through huge crime databases.

The use of crime data by police agencies is nothing new. Many big-city departments today make decisions on how to deploy officers based, in part, on computer mapping programs that track crime patterns and hot spots as they develop.

The LAPD and other agencies have become adept enough at channeling this flow of information from officers in the field that crimes committed in the evening are included on the next day's crime maps.

No matter how quickly crimes are plotted, however, these mapping programs leave cops stuck in reaction mode. They show where crimes have occurred in the past, but police still must make educated guesses about where future crimes will occur.

George Mohler and Martin Short believe they can change that.

In a yet-to-be-published research paper he wrote while at UCLA, Mohler makes the case that the time and place of past crimes can be used to determine where and when future crimes are m