Below is some weekend reading for you GPPers:
1. Internet Cop -Peter Suderman, Reason
A solution in search of a problem; Suderman profiles the Obama administration’s new head of the FCC with a focus on his role overseeing the Internet:
Julius Genachowski, the man hand-picked by President Barack Obama to chair the FCC, insists not. “I’ve been clear repeatedly that we’re not going to regulate the Internet,” he told The Wall Street Journal in February 2010. But his actions suggest otherwise. Since taking office in June 2009, Genachowski, a tech entrepreneur and former FCC counsel, has led the commission on an unprecedented quest for power over the Web’s network infrastructure, sparking a thunderous, confusing lobbying battle over who gets to control the Net.
2. Revolution in the Muslim World – George Freidman, Stratfor
Geopolitical strategist Freidman takes a stab at predicting how the uprisings in the Arab world may shake out:
If I were to guess at this point, I would guess that we are facing 1848. The Muslim world will not experience massive regime change as in 1989, but neither will the effects be as ephemeral as 1968. Like 1848, this revolution will fail to transform the Muslim world or even just the Arab world. But it will plant seeds that will germinate in the coming decades. I think those seeds will be democratic, but not necessarily liberal. In other words, the democracies that eventually arise will produce regimes that will take their bearings from their own culture, which means Islam.
3. California Dreaming About Texas Jobs -Steven Malanga, Real Clear Markets
Texas is growing, California isn’t. Malanga tries to explain why:
But every politician in California of either party ought to know that the answer to the state’s economic woes lies not in Texas, but in California. Job migration is a very sexy issue, and one blogger, relocation expert Joseph Vranich, is even keeping an online list of firms that have exited California. But migration makes up only a small part of the job gains or losses a state experiences. By contrast, job creation through expansion of businesses and the formation of new companies is far more responsible for job growth. California once knew how to create new jobs and new companies, and a few places in the state still do it fairly well. The answers to California’s woes lie in those places, not in Texas.
4. The Truth about Obama’s 2012 Budget – Veronique de Rugy, Reason
This one is a bit dated, but we should all remember that before Obama’s ‘fiscal policy’ speech last week, he put out a budget that has been so panned that he, well, had to make another one just a few months later:
Myth 1: Under President Barack Obama’s 2012 budget, we will “live within our means”.
Fact 1: Debt and spending will continue to grow and deficits will continue to persist under the president’s Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Request.
White House Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew claims that President Obama’s new budget calls for a “sustainable” deficit but the facts tell a different story. Despite a nominal commitment to fiscal reform, the president’s budget calls for $3.7 trillion in spending. That’s more spending than occurred in fiscal year 2010. This spending will result in a projected net deficit of $1.6 trillion, the highest level of deficit in U.S. history.
5. Understanding the S&P Report – Keith Hennessey
Economist Keith Hennessey explains S&P’s decision to downgrade the US fiscal outlook from ‘stable’ to ‘negative’ in layman’s terms:
Yesterday’s report by Standard & Poor’s on the U.S. government’s credit rating is driving headlines. You can learn a lot more from reading the primary source document than from news coverage of it.
Here is what S&P did:
On April 18, 2011, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services affirmed its ‘AAA’ long-term and ‘A-1+’ short-term sovereign credit ratings on the United States of America and revised its outlook on the long-term rating to negative from stable.
Happy Easter and have a good weekend.