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Category Archives: Congress

EPIC Challenges Samsung’s Surveillance of the Home, Files FTC Complaint

“EPIC has filed a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission about Samsung’s SmartTvs. “Samsung routinely intercepts and records the private communications of consumers in their homes,” EPIC wrote. EPIC detailed widespread consumer objections and charged that “privacy notices” do not diminish the harm to American consumers. In setting out the privacy violations, EPIC cited theContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – African Growth and Opportunity Act, DOE Real Property, Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Request, Foster Care, IRS Investment

African Growth and Opportunity Act: Lessons Learned from Other Countries’ Trade Arrangements with Sub-Saharan Africa, GAO-15-393R: Published: Feb 25, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2015. DOE Real Property: Better Data and a More Proactive Approach Needed to Facilitate Property Disposal, GAO-15-305: Published: Feb 25, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2015. Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Request:Continue Reading

New GAO Reports – Results-Oriented Management, Whistleblower Protection

Results-Oriented Management: OPM Needs to Do More to Ensure Meaningful Distinctions Are Made in SES Ratings and Performance Awards, GAO-15-189: Published: Jan 22, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 23, 2015: “GAO recommends that the Director of OPM consider various refinements to better ensure the SES performance appraisal system certification guidelines promote making meaningful distinctions in performance.Continue Reading

No Paperwhite read-aloud for you! FCC again lets Amazon and friends diss people with disabilities

New on LLRX – No Paperwhite read-aloud for you! FCC again lets Amazon and friends diss people with disabilities.   David Rothman continues his reporting on the status of Text to Speech applications that have yet to be added to E-Ink readers due to the FCC’s extension of vendor exemptions from complying with a key benefitContinue Reading

Most Americans confused about Net Neutrality – seek more information

Follow up to previous posting – Role of the Networked Public Sphere in the U.S. Net Neutrality Policy Debate, an article from The Register that contributes more resources and perspective to the debate: “With commissioners at US watchdog the FCC due to vote on proposed net neutrality rules next week, a poll of Americans hasContinue Reading

The Presidential Libraries Act and the Establishment of Presidential Libraries

CRS Report – The Presidential Libraries Act and the Establishment of Presidential Libraries – Wendy R. Ginsberg, Analyst in Government Organization and Management; Erika K. Lunder, Legislative Attorney; Daniel J. Richardson, Research Assistant. February 6, 2015. “The Presidential Libraries Act and the Establishment of Presidential Libraries Congressional Research Service Summary The Presidential Libraries Act (P.L.Continue Reading

CBO’s Economic Forecasting Record: 2015 Update

February 12, 2015 – “For nearly four decades, the Congressional Budget Office has prepared economic forecasts that underlie the agency’s projections for the federal budget and cost estimates for proposed federal legislation. In particular, forecasts of output, inflation, interest rates, and income play a significant role in the agency’s budgetary analysis; for example, projections ofContinue Reading

Proposed efficiency standard may eliminate noncondensing gas furnaces

EIA: “Following a court challenge that caused a previous proposal to be sent back for further analysis, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a new proposed rulemaking to increase the minimum efficiency standards for gas furnaces, which are mostly fueled by natural gas but also include propane furnaces. Gas furnaces are one ofContinue Reading

The Politics of Selecting the Bench from the Bar: The Legal Profession and Partisan Incentives to Politicize the Judiciary

Bonica, Adam, and Maya Sen. “The Politics of Selecting the Bench from the Bar: The Legal Profession and Partisan Incentives to Politicize the Judiciary.” HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series RWP15-001, January 2015. “The American judiciary has increasingly come under attack as polarized and politicized. Using a newly collected dataset that captures the ideological positioningContinue Reading

DOT and FAA Propose New Rules for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems

News release: “The Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration today proposed a framework of regulations that would allow routine use of certain small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in today’s aviation system, while maintaining flexibility to accommodate future technological innovations. The FAA proposal offers safety rules for small UAS (under 55 pounds) conducting non-recreational operations. TheContinue Reading

Untested unregulated chemicals in consumer products are hazardous to your health

“GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals is a method for comparative chemical hazard assessment. It is used by a wide range of professionals, governmental bodies, non-profits, businesses, formulators, and product developers, and anybody interested in assessing the inherent hazards of chemicals and their potential effect on human health and the environment.” “Diseases of our modern age areContinue Reading

The Target and Other Financial Data Breaches: Frequently Asked Questions

The Target and Other Financial Data Breaches: Frequently Asked Questions “In November and December of 2013, cybercriminals breached the data security of Target, one of the largest U.S. retail chains, stealing the personal and financial information of millions of customers. On December 19, 2013, Target confirmed that some 40 million credit and debit card accountContinue Reading