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Hurricane Irene – The Big Picture

Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 21:28 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture


Hurricane Irene wound up by most estimates as one of the top ten most destructive and deadly hurricanes to hit the United States since 1980. While ultimately not as powerful as many had predicted, the storm still killed at least 27 people along its path from the Caribbean to the eastern seaboard. Transportation was shut down all along the east coast, stranding residents and tourists in shelters, airports, and train stations. More than 5.8 million customers lost electricity, thousands of flights were cancelled, flooding washed out roads and destroyed homes, and evacuation orders were issued for hundreds of thousands. Gathered here are pictures from the Hurricane’s path. — Lane Turner (44 photos total)

Hotel workers put outdoor furniture in a pool to keep it from blowing away in preparation for Hurricane Irene on August 26, 2011 in Ocean City, Md. Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan has ordered a mandatory evacuation for thousands of residents and visitors. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images) #

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Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 19:24 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture


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A Tip for Joe the Machinist: Watch Your Back

Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 19:16 by John Sinteur in category: Robber Barons


This remarkably brazen assault on core American workplace values originated at Booz & Co., one of the nation’s most prestigious corporate consulting firms. America’s corporations, Booz analysts advised earlier this year, need to start attacking the "exorbitant" paychecks now going to their most prized, "steady and reliable" veteran workers.

The Booz analysts offer an example of the "significantly overpaid" worker they have in mind. They call him Joe the Machinist, "a stellar employee who knows the ins and outs of the organization, the result of his many years on the job."

Joe’s "wealth of institutional knowledge" has become a valued corporate asset. But Joe, after over two decades on the job, is making a lot more than he used to make, especially "compared with co-workers who have been doing the same job for just two years."

Corporate America, the Booz & Co. advice continues, now needs to "address these kinds of wage disparities." Companies need to start "retooling labor costs" to narrow "the gap between high wages and market value."


CEOs at companies with over $10 billion in annual revenue, The Wall Street Journal reported back in 2008, make twice as much in the United States as they do in Europe — and nine times more in the United States than they do in Japan.

Corporate America, in other words, needs some serious “labor cost retooling” at the top — before gutting pay for its most experienced and skilled workers at the bottom.

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  1. Been there, got shafted… After about 20 years as a Principal Engineer at a top semi-conductor equipment and software company, I was rif’d even though I was the architect and principal developer of the software that contributed over $100M per anum to the company income… They moved all software engineering off-shore to India and Korea and then sold the division ($120M/yr) to Applied Materials a few months after they laid me off…

Ideas, Not Hierarchy

Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 17:21 by John Sinteur in category: Apple


Jobs: What I do all day is meet with teams of people and work on ideas and solve problems to make new products, to make new marketing programs, whatever it is. 

Mossberg: And are people willing to tell you you’re wrong? 

Jobs: (laughs) Yeah.

Mossberg: I mean, other than snarky journalists, I mean people that work for…

Jobs: Oh, yeah, no we have wonderful arguments.

Mossberg: And do you win them all? 

Jobs: Oh no I wish I did. No, you see you can’t. If you want to hire great people and have them stay working for you, you have to let them make a lot of decisions and you have to, you have to be run by ideas, not hierarchy. The best ideas have to win, otherwise good people don’t stay. 

Mossberg: But you must be more than a facilitator who runs meetings. You obviously contribute your own ideas. 

Jobs: I contribute ideas, sure. Why would I be there if I didn’t? 

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CIA demands cuts to critical 9/11 memoir

Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 12:31 by Paul Jay in category: News


The Central Intelligence Agency has demanded a publisher make extensive cuts to a book critical of its performance before and after the September 11 attacks, officials said Friday.

“The Black Banners: The Inside Story of 9/11 and the War Against Al-Qaeda,” a memoir by former FBI agent Ali Soufan due out next month, recounts his experiences at the heart of high-profile terror investigations.

Soufan has accused the CIA of insisting on scores of redactions he says are not justified on security grounds but are aimed at undermining an account that reflects badly on the agency, the New York Times reported.

A spokesman for the CIA rejected the accusation and said the changes were meant to safeguard national security.

“The suggestion that the Central Intelligence Agency has requested redactions on this publication because it doesn’t like the content is ridiculous,” CIA spokesman Preston Golson said in an email.

CIA says ridiculous, so it must be true then.

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The Joy of Tech comic…

Posted on August 29th, 2011 at 12:10 by John Sinteur in category: Apple, Cartoon


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