“Did you know as much as half of your household energy use goes to heating and cooling? Airflow problems can reduce your HVAC system’s efficiency by up to 15% and contribute to carbon pollution. In fact, dirt and neglect are the top causes of heating and cooling system inefficiency and failure. Check out EPA’s A Guide to Energy-Efficient Heating and Cooling for more to learn how to keep your HVAC system clean and efficient. More tips: http://www.epa.gov/earthday/actonclimate/.”

Donald Kohn, Brookings - Institutions for Macroprudential Regulation: The UK and the U.S. - ”The U.S. and the world economy still haven’t fully recovered from the global financial crisis that provoked the worst recession since the Great Depression. Nonetheless, a lot of effort already has gone into reducing the risk that we put the world through something like this again. In the U.S. and elsewhere we’ve renovated our regulatory and supervisory structures in charge of making the financial system more resilient. We’ve made progress, but—at least in the U.S.—my view is that the job isn’t done yet. In particular, I’ll be concentrating on the institutions we’ve created to deal with risk to the entire financial system—so-called macroprudential regulation. And I’ll be contrasting the systems put in place in the UK, where I have been privileged to become a member of the macroprudential regulator—the Financial Policy Committee (FPC)—and the U.S. where the Dodd-Frank law created the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC). And I’ll be making some suggestions for improving the FSOC’s chances for success…”

Digital Public Library of America Celebrates Its First Birthday

April 19, 2014

“This week marks the one-year anniversary of the launch of the Digital Public Library of America, a groundbreaking all-digital library that brings together millions of items from America’s libraries, archives, and museums, and makes them freely available to the world. In celebration, DPLA is proud to announce the addition of six major new partners and […]

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5 Things To Consider When Taking Out Student Loans

April 19, 2014

Via Home Room – the official blog of the Dept. of Education: “Federal student loans can be a great way to help pay for college or career school. While you shouldn’t be afraid to take out federal student loans, you should be smart about it. Before you take out a loan, it’s important to understand that a loan […]

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World Bank – Systems Approach for Better Education Results

April 19, 2014

“The Systems Approach for Better Education Results (SABER) is an initiative to produce comparative data and knowledge on education policies and institutions, with the aim of helping countries systematically strengthen their education systems. SABER evaluates the quality of education policies against evidence-based global standards, using new diagnostic tools and detailed policy data collected for the […]

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First-ever public domain database for submitting emails to members of Congress launched

April 19, 2014

“EFF and Sunlight Foundation published an open call for help testing a tool and populating an open data format that would make it easier for everyday people to contact members of Congress. We already had a prototype, but we needed volunteers to conduct tests on each and every Congressional website. We expected the project would take about two […]

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Why Is the Effective Fed Funds Rate So Low?

April 18, 2014

Allen, Kyle D. and Griffiths, Mark D. and Hein, Scott E. and Winters, Drew B., Why Is the Effective Fed Funds Rate So Low? (April 16, 2014). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2425913 “Since December 18, 2008 when the Federal Reserve began paying 25 basis points (bps) on depository institution’s reserves, the effective federal funds rate has stayed […]

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How Does Government Borrowing Affect Corporate Financing and Investment?

April 18, 2014

Graham, John R. and Leary, Mark T. and Roberts, Michael R., How Does Government Borrowing Affect Corporate Financing and Investment? (April 16, 2014). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2425916 “Using a novel dataset of accounting and market information that spans most publicly traded nonfinancial firms over the last century, we find an economically large and robust negative relation […]

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The Wage Gap, State by State

April 18, 2014

 National Women’s Law Center: ”Families depend on women’s wages more than ever, but the typical woman working full time, year round is paid less than the typical full-time, year-round male worker. These disparities exist in every state. However, as indicated in the map below, the size of the disparity varies by state. Additionally, women represent nearly […]

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New GAO Reports: Maritime Infrastructure, Medicare Imaging Accreditation, Nuclear Weapons

April 18, 2014

MARITIME INFRASTRUCTURE: Key Issues Related to Commercial Activity in the U.S. Arctic over the Next Decade, GAO-14-299: Published: Mar 19, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 2014. MEDICARE IMAGING ACCREDITATION: Effect on Access to Advanced Diagnostic Imaging Is Unclear amid Other Policy Changes, GAO-14-378: Published: Apr 18, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 2014. NUCLEAR WEAPONS: Technology Development Efforts for the Uranium Processing Facility, GAO-14-295: […]

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Coalition Urges White House to Recognize EU Opinion; End NSA Telephone Records Program

April 18, 2014

“In a letter to the White House, a coalition of US organizations urged the Administration to recognize the recent opinion by the Court of Justice, the highest court in Europe, that ended a European data retention mandate. The European law required telephone and internet companies to retain metadata on customers for national security purposes. The European Court of Justice […]

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U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel

April 18, 2014

CRS - U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel - Jeremy M. Sharp, Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, April 11, 2014 “This report provides an overview of U.S. foreign assistance to Israel. It includes a review of past aid programs, data on annual assistance, and an analysis of current issues. For general information on Israel, see CRS Report RL33476, Israel: Background and […]

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