Aug 10

Guest Blogger: Re-imagining America’s Business School Curriculums

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Approximately 90 percent of America’s infrastructure is privately owned and yet the primary focus of homeland security educational programs in the U.S. has been directed toward local, state, federal government, and military employees. In addition, most of the homeland security educational programs on college campuses are located within the criminal justice or security studies degree programs. The challenge we must now face is how to best develop a culture of critical infrastructure preparedness within the private sector—one that will allow us to effectively mitigate, prevent, prepare, respond to, and recover from all hazards including acts of terrorism.

The question we must ask ourselves is: Who provides the leadership to direct the spending of resources of the multiple entities that compose our privately owned infrastructure? The answer of course, is the CEOs, CFOs, and COOs of American businesses and nonprofit organizations. id=”more-41674″>

How have they prepared themselves for these traditional roles? Most have earned undergraduate degrees and advanced degrees/MBA’s in business, finance, accounting, IT, and marketing. These academic credentials help them develop the traditional knowledge, skills, and abilities required to succeed in leading a business or nonprofit entity. As an adjunct professor who has taught both business management courses and security courses for over 15 years, I continue to find it shocking to observe that it is still possible to earn an undergraduate or graduate degree in business without ever taking a course in business continuity, crisis management, terrorism, security management, or homeland security. Ironically, it is the graduates of these business programs who one day will be the senior decision-makers deciding on how the organization will use its resources and finances to protect the people, properties, profits, and assets of their own organization/segment of America’s infrastructure. How can they be expected to make the proper decisions on infrastructure preparedness without the proper education?

The Department of Homeland Security has attempted to address the issue of critical infrastructure preparedness by sending government liaison employees to the private sector. These employees endeavor to not only make organizations more aware of their responsibilities for emergency preparedness/infrastructure protection, but to discuss how they can best realize this goal. It’s always a challenging role for government employees without any private sector business management experience to advise private business leaders on how to best incorporate security practices into existing business processes and operations. DHS has also advocated the use of ICS/NIMS as the standard emergency response system for both the public and private sectors. The system emphasizes the strategic roles of operations, logistics, planning, finance, and administration. These are the exact elements traditionally addressed in business degree programs. Again, I would challenge anyone to find a business management course that incorporates ICS/NIMS into its course design or business curriculum!

In order to develop a true culture of homeland/hometown security and critical infrastructure preparedness within the private and nonprofit sectors, it is imperative that America’s colleges and universities re-imagine their business school curriculums by integrating business continuity, crisis management, and homeland security courses and modules into existing business courses. Additionally, these curriculums should require a basic understanding of critical infrastructure preparedness prior to graduation.

As an adjunct professor who has taught both business and security management courses I’m recommending that the following courses incorporate emergency preparedness and homeland security content: /> 1. Strategic management courses must include modules that address threat and vulnerability assessments. SWOT analysis would have a new meaning; /> 2. International business courses must address the impact of terrorism and all hazards preparation and response in their design; /> 3. Logistics and supply chain courses must have modules on supply chain security and compliance with U.S. and international security requirements; /> 4. Human resource courses must integrate security management issues into their curriculum to include workplace violence, domestic and international terrorism, and emergency management; /> 5. There should be mandatory courses in business continuity, crisis management, and the basic principles of homeland security to include ICS/NIMS. Business schools that do not have qualified faculty members to address these special topic courses should allow business students the opportunity to take these courses within other departments(criminal justice, security studies, and homeland security programs) located either within the university or at nearby educational institutions; and /> 6. In order to better protect business entities from cyber attacks, students should be required to complete a basic course in IT security/information assurance.

The benefits of requiring America’s business schools to take a leadership role in integrating critical infrastructure preparedness courses into existing business curriculums should be obvious. This return on investment will allow the private sector to develop a new group of leaders who are better prepared to make well-informed decisions on the allocation of corporate resources and monies needed to better protect the private infrastructures of the United States. Leading practitioners from the field of applied behavioral science and organizational development have estimated that it takes approximately 5 years to change the culture of an organization. If we could convince the deans of America’s business schools to take the actions necessary to re-imagine business management curriculums with the previously prescribed homeland security oriented courses we would be well on our way to developing a culture of critical infrastructure preparedness and protection by the year 2020.

Ed Piper is an Adjunct Professor Johns Hopkins University/Carey School of Business.

The views expressed by guest bloggers on the Foundry do not necessarily reflect the views of the Heritage Foundation.

The Foundry: Conservative Policy News.

Aug 10

Consider Me Skeptical…

…of this story in the Daily Caller: “True stories of bloggers who secretly feed on partisan cash.”

“It’s standard operating procedure” to pay bloggers for favorable coverage, says one Republican campaign operative. A GOP blogger-for-hire estimates that “at least half the bloggers that are out there” on the Republican side “are getting remuneration in some way beyond ad sales.” …

Ad purchases at above market rates are a common means by which some campaigns seek to influence bloggers, according to numerous campaign operatives and bloggers.

If it appears that conservative bloggers are more likely to take campaign money than their liberal counterparts, there may be a reason. According to Dan Riehl, conservatives can’t rely on the infrastructure of foundations and think tanks that supports so many liberal bloggers.

Riehl has made it a goal to mobilize conservative benefactors and organizers to establish a funding infrastructure mimicking what the liberal “netroots” created during the Bush years. “They did it the smart way,” Riehl says.

On the left, many of the once independent bloggers are now employed by, or receive money from, liberal organizations like Media Matters, the Center for American Progress and Campaign for America’s Future.

The last point is certainly true; many left-wing web sites are owned by George Soros, etc. And I have no reason to doubt the handful of instances involving local bloggers that the Daily Caller cites. But I can say categorically that no politician or political campaign has ever offered to pay us to write favorably about them, and I am highly skeptical that other well-known bloggers on the right have had a different experience.

Years ago, some lefty wrote that we were in the pay of the Claremont Institute. Would that it were true! Unfortunately, whatever cash flow there may be runs in the opposite direction. For the record, we have never received any income from this site other than ad revenue which, to the best of our knowledge, has always been sold at market rates to pretty much anyone who wants to buy space-including, at one time, the Democratic National Committee, and currently, to the consternation of some of our California readers, Jerry Brown.

This is, perhaps, an advantage of our amateur status. We are all full-time practicing lawyers, and have been for more than 30 years. Ad revenue is fun, at the margin, but we’re certainly not living on it. So it would be ridiculous to write something we don’t really believe in exchange for a few bucks from a campaign. Our readers can rest assured that everything they read on this site reflects our true views and our best judgment-for better or worse, some might say.

Power Line

Aug 10

The Friedmanite argument for regulation

By Justin Fox

University of Michigan strategy professor Anil Karnani had a piece in Monday’s Wall Street Journal that began like yet another admiring riff on Milton Friedman’s famous 1970 essay, “The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits“:

Can companies do well by doing good? Yes — sometimes.

But the idea that companies have a responsibility to act in the public interest and will profit from doing so is fundamentally flawed.

By the end, though, Karnani had taken this argument to a more interesting place. Because it’s often not in corporations’ interest to act in the public interest, he wrote, “The ultimate solution is government regulation … with all their faults, governments are a far more effective protector of  the public good than any campaign for corporate social responsibility.”

This actually isn’t diametrically opposed to Friedman’s contention that corporations should do whatever they can to make money “within the rules of the game” — rules presumably set by government. It’s just that Friedman was so suspicious of government and of regulation that he seldom permitted himself to say a good word about it.

Add to this the complication that corporations, far more so in modern Washington than in 1970, play an often decisive role in determining the rules of the game under which they operate. Case in point: the relaxation of capital standards on banks and securities firms in the years leading up to the financial crisis, or the machinations of the Kochtopus.

So where does that leave us? I’m not entirely sure, but I do think we ought to be suspicious of any argument that businesspeople and (in particular) their representatives in Washington have the answer to this quandary. Why? Because Uncle Miltie told me so (near the end of his social responsibility essay):

I have been impressed time and again by the schizophrenic character of many businessmen. They are capable of being extremely far-sighted and clear-headed in matters that are internal to their own business. They are incredibly short-sighted and muddle-headed in matters that are outside their businesses but affect the possible survival of business in general.

Justin Fox is editorial director of the Harvard Business Review Group and author of “The Myth of the Rational Market.”

Milton FriedmanWall Street JournalCorporate social responsibilityCorporationBusiness
Ezra Klein

Aug 10

Lawyers For NOLA Cops Charged In Danziger Killings To Meet With DOJ

Lawyers for the four current and former New Orleans police officers charged with killing civilians in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina will meet with Justice Department lawyers today to urge the DOJ not to pursue the death penalty.

The four were charged in July with violating the civil rights of unarmed civilians on the Danziger Bridge when they allegedly opened fire, killing two and wounding four, and then, allegedly, covered up what happened on the bridge.

The Justice Department has not said whether it will pursue the death penalty.

Lawyers for the accused told the New Orleans Times-Picayune they don’t expect to sway the DOJ’s eventual decision.

“It is just a chance to be heard,” said attorney Frank DeSalvo, who represents one of the officers. “I don’t think what we say will affect something one way or another.”

All four have pleaded not guilty.

Capital punishment on federal charges, especially against police officers, is rare. According to the Times-Picayune, there is only one police officer in the country on federal death row: another former New Orleans cop convicted of ordering the murder of a woman who complained about his drug-protection racket.

Several other officers have pleaded guilty to charges related to the shootings. Two others have been charged by the DOJ for conspiring to cover up what happened, and pleaded not guilty. They do not face the death penalty.

Hurricane KatrinaNew OrleansCapital punishmentUnited States Department of JusticePolice officer


Aug 10


Political Punch

Aug 10

Boehner calls for Obama to fire Geithner

 Boehner is delivering an economic address Tuesday.

Boehner is delivering an economic address Tuesday.

(CNN) – House Minority Leader John Boehner is calling on President Obama to fire Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and other top economic officials, according to prepared remarks from a speech the top House Republican is giving Tuesday morning in Cleveland.

“We have been told that the president’s economic team is ‘exhausted’ – already, his budget director and his chief economist have moved on or are about to. Clearly, they see the writing on the wall, and the president should too,” says Boehner. “President Obama should ask for – and accept – the resignations of the remaining members of his economic team, starting with Secretary Geithner and Larry Summers, the head of the National Economic Council.”

The ten-term Republican from southwestern Ohio, who would become House Speaker if the Republicans win back control of the chamber in the November midterm elections, is scheduled to speak at the City Club of Cleveland.

Boehner’s call for Geithner and Summers resignations is the fifth of five actions he is calling on Obama to immediately take to help improve the economy and stimulate job growth. The other four include urging the president to announce “he will not carry out his plan to impose job-killing tax hikes on families and small businesses” and “that he will veto any job-killing bills sent to his desk by a lame-duck Congress – including ‘card check,’ a national energy tax, and any other tax increases on families and small businesses.”

Boehner also asks Obama to urge Congressional Democratic leaders to stop obstructing GOP attempts to repeal what he calls the new health care law’s “job killing” mandate and calls on the president to submit an “aggressive spending reduction package” to Congress.

Democrats offered a “prebuttal” on Monday to Boehner’s address. On a conference call with reporters, Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, Democratic National Committee communications director Brad Woodhouse and Ohio Democratic Party chairman Chris Redfern pounded home the message that no matter what Boehner would say on Tuesday, his policies would bring America back to “the last eight years.”

“More of the same,” Wasserman-Schultz said. “Maybe repackaged into something shiny. But not that it’s going to look or smell or taste like anything different.”

The Democratic pushback continued Tuesday morning, with the DNC released a web video that charges that “it’s John Boehner and Republicans who want to take us back to the Bush era economic policies that nearly sank our economy.” LINK TO WEB AD: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AvwkdXNQfw4

CNN’s Jeff Simon contributed to this report

CNN Political Ticker

Aug 10

Why Statism Is the Wrong Frame, Cont’d

by Conor Friedersdorf

In an item yesterday, I argued that if you're trying to understand someone like Matt Yglesias,
whether to effectively argue against his views or to engage him
persuasively, the frames of "statism" and "liberty versus tyranny" are
almost completely useless. Let's revisit why this is so. Mr. Yglesias favors deregulating various professional cartels, ending the legally proscribed monopoly on buses that some urban public transit agencies enjoy, reforming America's absurd system of agricultural subsidies, and making it easier for developers to build in accordance with the local demand for real estate, rather than government imposed zoning restrictions. (Odds are he subscribes to even more free-market friendly policies that the right embraces. That's just off the top of my head.)

Mr. Yglesias is neither a conservative nor a libertarian, as his approach to more consequential issues like health care policy demonstrates. On all sorts of policy questions, in fact, he favors a much larger federal role in American life than I do, putting us at odds all the time. Nor does he support the free market positions listed above because he has embraced the right's first principles on those issues: he is, after all, one of America's leading progressive bloggers.

Why does he favor some policies that conservatives like? And can we identify more of them for the sake of strategic alliances? We'll never know if, upon learning that he is a liberal, we automatically presume that he is a "statist," or even more absurdly, that he prefers tyranny to liberty. Those are unserious buzz words that sell books, not a realistic portrait of American liberals, a group that encompasses many people farther right than Mr. Yglesias.

In his response to yesterday's item, Mark Levin betrays his ongoing inability to understand any of this. He writes:

Idiot stalker.

This is so pathetic. So a liberal blogger favors regulation in some
respect, and this proves to Friedersdork that my characterizing the
general left-wing enterprise as statist is unhelpful – to Friedersdork.
So, the fact that the liberal blogger isn't advancing big-government
arguments ALL THE TIME demonstrates the inaccuracy of referring to his
agenda as statist. This is the line that grabs your attention — "dismantling efforts to
use the state to help the privileged has always been on the agenda."
Really? So, before we get to this workers' paradise, we need this big
state to sort things out. And, of course, at some point it will dissolve
itself. Has anyone heard this stupidity before? And how will this
occur. Marx does not tell us. His buddy Engels tried, but he failed
miserably as well. This is not to say that those who post such things
are Marxists. It is to say they are ignorant. Statism is the perfect
word to describe them. Liberty and tyranny are the perfect words to
explain them.

Let's be perfectly clear about why the "statist" frame is misleading:

The desired end of Matthew Yglesias isn't to grow the American state. On some issues, he sees a bigger state as a necessary means to an end he desires (like using subsidies to increase the percentage of Americans covered by some form of health insurance), and on other issues he favors taking power away from the state. It is useful to understand these distinctions, even if you think, as I do, that the federal government should be much smaller than Mr. Yglesias would have it.

Mr. Levin could mount a better defense of his pet term if his book merely argued that anyone who wants government to grow for any reason is a statist, but if you look at how he actually defines the term, ends are clearly implicated, and the notion that it describes the average American liberal becomes laughable. I'll cite page numbers from the hardcover text, where we learn that the statist “has an insatiable appetite for control… is constantly
agitating for government action… speaks in the tongue of the demagogue… veils
his pursuits in moral indignation…. and is never circumspect about his own
shortcomings” (page 8). Qualities antithetical to the statist include
“initiative, self-reliance, and independence” (page 9).  “The Statist often justifies change as
conferring new, abstract rights, which is nothing more than a Statist deception
intended to empower the state and deny man his real rights” (page 14). “The
Statist is dissatisfied with the condition of his own existence… he is angry,
resentful, petulant, and jealous.” (page 15) “For the Statist, liberty is not a
blessing but the enemy” (page 16). “The Statist urges Americans to view
themselves through the lens of those who resent and even hate them… The Statist
wants Americans to see themselves as backward” (page 18). “

The book
goes on like that, with “The Statist” vexed by the
Declaration of Independence in the chapter "On Faith and the Founding," falsely
promising utopianism in the chapter "On the Constitution," and in the chapter "On
Federalism," taking advantage of the 14th amendment as “a pathway to his
precious Utopia where, in the end, all are enslaved in one form or another.” So again, returning to my original point, if you're trying to understand someone like Matt Yglesias, the frame of statism — as defined by Mark Levin — is almost completely useless. (Note: In another item on his Facebook page, Mr. Levin implies that he has persuasively rebutted my criticism, echoed in The Weekly Standard, that he argues against straw men in his book, but unless I am missing something, the issue is completely unaddressed in the various links he provides.)

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The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan

Aug 10

It’s 10 Weeks to the Miderms: So What Should Obama and the GOP Do?

It’s 10 weeks now to the mid-terms. So what should be on Barack Obama’s Things To Do List — and what should be on the GOP’s?

CNN has this list for Obama.

And this list for Republicans.

Who’ll stick closest to the list? Who’ll be derailed or fall off message? (Take your bets now).

Right now it seems the GOP is poised to do at least one of them: getting the focus back on jobs. Agree with it or not, this seems right out of the CNN list:

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) will call Tuesday for the mass firing of the Obama administration’s economic team, including Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and White House adviser Larry Summers, arguing that November’s midterm elections are shaping up as a referendum on sustained unemployment across the nation and saying the “writing is on the wall.”

Boehner, delivering what his aides billed as a major economic address, will say President Obama’s team lacks “real-world, hands-on experience” in creating jobs, according to a draft version of his speech that was released in advance. The Republican lawmaker plans to cite reports that some senior aides complained of “exhaustion,” including the recently departed budget chief Peter Orszag.

“President Obama should ask for – and accept – the resignations of the remaining members of his economic team, starting with Secretary Geithner and Larry Summers, the head of the National Economic Council,” Boehner says in the prepared remarks, which are scheduled for delivery at the City Club of Cleveland shortly after 8 a.m. The mass dismissal, he adds, “is no substitute for a referendum on the president’s job-killing agenda. That question will be put before the American people in due time. But we do not have the luxury of waiting months for the president to pick scapegoats for his failing ’stimulus’ policies.”

Boehner’s demand for the ousters of Geithner and Summers is likely to be met with derision in the West Wing, and denounced as mere electioneering less than 75 days before the midterm election. Calls for cabinet officials to be fired is nothing new for the party out of power — during the Bush administration many Democrats called for the ouster of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, a demand that was not met until Democrats swept the 2006 midterms.

Boehner is seeking to personalize mounting concerns among voters about Obama’s handling of the economic recovery. In his speech, he argues that Obama’s advisers unfairly highlight brief signs of marginal improvement to suggest a coming surge in job creation.

Even if it is a standard political ploy, it would from the GOPs’ standpoint get the focus back on jobs and givethe image of Republicans talking about jobs rather than image of a party with members who think Barack Obama is a Muslim, a mosque two blocks away from Ground Zero is on Ground Zero, and that illegal immigrants infants are actually “terror babies” being “dropped” in the United States.

Which message will get out more solidly? The GOP message — and which message will the party be putting out the strongest? Or does Obama have the remaining clout to help if he campaigns, so the Dems can retain the House if the party also has strong candidates and a well-organized ground game?

The Moderate Voice

Aug 10

Romney Plans Road Trip

Mitt Romney “is preparing to embark on an aggressive schedule that will take him to more than 25 states in what is seen as a prelude to another possible White House bid,” the Boston Globe reports.

“Since losing the 2008 Republican nomination, the former Massachusetts governor has sought to reposition himself within the party, de-emphasizing social issues and focusing instead on foreign policy and economic affairs. But the most dramatic reinvention may be a stylistic one: Romney is seeking to come across as more easygoing and accessible than the formally dressed, perfectly coiffed, carefully rehearsed candidate of the last campaign.”

Interesting: “New Hampshire is the place Romney’s advisers and allies say they see Mitt at rest: a wearer of jeans and driver of a black 2003 Chevy Silverado pickup truck. Some of them are hoping that Romney’s laid-back summer lifestyle will survive Labor Day and endure onto the campaign trail, helping to erase the impression many voters have had of a wealthy candidate almost animatronically focused on winning.”
Taegan Goddard’s Political Wire

Aug 10

Fox News’ Ties to Terrorism

Last night on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart and co. pointed out brilliantly that Fox News’ logic about “extremist” funding to the Park51 project can be equally applied to …. Fox News.

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