US Stimulus Plan Criticised Internationally

November 5, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Reid Rosen


Friday Posts

A BBC article reports that China, Germany and South America disagree with the US’s 600 billion dollars worth of Stimulus. The German finance Minister felt that the policies have been clueless and create extra problems for the world. South America says that the US’s decision to keep interest rate lows have caused the US dollar to be weak. This has hurt global imports and competition. The Chinese said that, “if the domestic policy is optimal policy for the United States alone, but at the same time it is not an optimal policy for the world, it may bring a lot of negative impact to the world.” Brazil voiced the same opinion that exports like Brazil will only be hurt from the stimulus.

I find this article to be interesting to me personally. As a business major I find it really interesting to see how the United States economy is recovering. The stimulus issue has been such a hot topic for a lot of Americans. Often when I read the newspaper or other news source if I see a article on the stimulus plan, I can’t help but read the article. Back on the subject of the article, I believe that our interest should be for the US economy before we try to keep the G20 countries happy. The real question should be what having this low of interest rates worth the 600 billion dollars worth of stimulus. The German Finance Minister does touch on this point, but the current performance of the market has shown that the stimulus is working. As a journalist writing about finance I imagine you would have to be extremely smart to be able to write and cover a confusing subject like global financing.

China Takes the SuperComputer

October 29, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Reid Rosen

Friday Posts


In a BBC report China has taken the top spot with the new super computer Tianhe- 1A. The computer is capable of 2.5 trillion calculations per second. To reach such a huge processing power the computer uses 7,000 graphic processors and 14,000 Intel chips. Tianhe-1A is 50% faster than any other rival computer. The closet competitor was America’s XT5 Jaguar in Oak Ridge national headquarters in Tennessee. The super computer is housed in more than 100 fridge sized cabinets and weighs more than 155 tons. The computer is now being used for weather and also by the National Offshore Drilling Corporation.

Its kind of a scary thought that China has beaten the US at its own game. The United States was responsible for the invention of the Computer and the Super Computer. China’s capabilities are such because of the capital they now have access too. A point I want to make about the article is how brief it is. No, quotes from anyone who works on the computer only some from the US man who saw it. I think this is any interesting part about journalism especially one that is global. Journalism stories that are truly ground breaking may more than likely not taking place in the US. Even more important is how News media’s are adjusting to meet the global need. This would be a subject that I would find interesting to discuss in class.

No more Japanese

October 22, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Reid Rosen

Friday Posts


An NPR article from this week addresses several Japanese companies decisions to move into speaking English. English is not an unfamiliar language to the Japanese they have been taking classes for decades; considering they are the third largest economy in the world they have had to. But, the e-commerce company Rakuten Inc. has required all its employees by 2012 to speak English. This includes in all emails, and meetings. Some people in Japan have been upset over the decision however.  Many young people are against the move and even the president of Honda motors said the move was “boneheaded”. The Japanese government has even made a move to English. It is requiring all English classes to be taught completely in English by 2013.

I found the article to be really interesting because Japan has always had such a distinct culture. To see Japan move more towards English seems somewhat of Westernizing. But, the article does make a good point Japan has moved from manufacturing to service industries. In fact 70% of Japan’s GDP comes from service industry. Just like in the US we have had a backlash in learning even a little Spanish, the Japanese are experience something similar but on  a larger scale. I also thinks its interesting about the media the Japanese are using it to teach English the NPR page had a video link to a hilarious clip.

Promoted in Al-Qaida

October 15, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Reid Rosen

Friday Posts 10/15/2010

An NPR article from today sheds light on two Americans who joined Al-Qaida. Not only were are both Americans native to the US and have been active in the terriorist group Al-Qaida, they have been promoted to senior positions. Adam Gadahn from California and Anwar al-Awlaki from New Mexico has given al-Qaida possible media strategies to target American recruits. Both radical leaders have different approaches into how to influence. Each radical leader has a different approach to the how they speak to the public via the internet. Gadahn, grew up on a goat farm in California and had parents who were hippies. Gadahn was homeschooled, but became big into death metal rock. Gadahn when giving his speeches is similar to the music he listens to. Being confrontational, aggressive and speaking directly to the viewer, often pointing at the camera. Awlaki’s story couldn’t be more different, moving to New Mexico with his father who was a Rhode Scholar. Awlaki got his master’s in engineering and shortly after wards became an Imam. But, only after Awlaki was imprisoned in Yemen in 2004 did his message become dark.

This article is interesting yes because the difference between both Islamic leaders. But, I think the other important piece and pertains to what we have discussed in class; the use of social media to attract members into al-Qaida. Apparently Awlaki using Youtube and videos has been able to not only recruit new young Americans; but rather than al-Qaida having to look for the recruits, the recruits look for al-Qaida. I think a topic like this goes into our discussion about media values. I personally think we should take all measures to not allow these videos to be found on the internet. We talked about the freedom of speech in class, but what if that speech is promoting terrorism? The freedom of speech is not such an easy issue.

Holy Carp

October 8, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Reid Rosen

Friday Post


An article from NPR today addresses the issue of the Asian Carp heading through man made canals in the Chicago River into the Lake Michigan. What have experts concluded as the solution to the current threat of the Asian carp; reversing the flow of the Chicago River. What seems like an impossible task actually occurred in the 1880’s when the public of Chicago was getting their water from Lake Michigan. But, during that same time Lake Michigan was receiving sewage run off, industrial run off and even run off from the Union Stockyards in Chicago. The result was outbreaks of Typhoid and other disease. According to the NPR article engineers reversed the flow by building a 28 mile long canal connecting the Chicago River and the Des Plaines River. This caused the current to flow south down towards St. Louis. It was a remarkable engineering accomplishment. This however has led to the concern of the Asian carp swimming upstream into the lake. Now officials are saying it is time to re-reverse the stream back to its original path. This prevents the deadly carp from entering the great lakes and threating the local fish population.

I found the most interesting part of the article to be the reversal of the Chicago River’s flow in 1880. For the time period this sounds like an amazing accomplishment and the amount of man power needed must have been a tremendous operation. As a journalist I found the article very relevant because of Impact and Prominence. Everyone knows about Chicago and knowing that possibly the river could be redirected is an alarming fact. I personally find the story interesting because I didn’t even know it was possible to change the current of a river which I think makes it somewhat of a large impact.

Are We Alone!?

September 30, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Reid Rosen

News Comment 9/29/10

An NPR article this Wednesday raises the age old question, is there life on other planets? Again our curiosity is peaked with astronomers finding of planet Gliese 581-g that lies in the solar system Gliese 581. The planet which is only 20 light years away, shows very suitable conditions for life. Scientists are calling the planet the first finding of this caliber and say that it is a perfect temperature and distance away from the planet’s orbiting star to have water. Paul Butler one of the Chief Astrologists in the finding, says that “What we know is that this planet exists at the right distance for liquid water, and that it has the right amount of mass to hold onto an atmosphere and to protect its liquid water on the surface,” he also goes on to say. “Of course, any subsequent discussion about life is purely speculative.” Scientists are saying that the solar system Gliese 581 is extremely similar to our own, but on a smaller scale. About one hundredth the size, Gliese 581-g’s orbit takes 37 days. The next step for Scientists is to examine the atmosphere of Gliese 581-g.

I thought this was a really interesting story for NPR to report on because everything the report covers has been based off speculation. In our Journalism class we recently had discussions over the dangers of reporting on speculation. Of course the sources from the paper are reputable. But, even in the quote from Paul Butler he clarifies that it is all speculation. As an editor I think you would have to be very careful in what material you cover, especially if you are a reputable source like NPR.  The report and the title of the report are exciting for any reader who is skimming over the internet page. It immediately grabbed my attention because of the concept of life on another plant. I don’t know whether this would fit under the bizarre category but it grabs a reader’s attention.

The Story of Wiktoid Pilecki

September 20, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Reid Rosen

News Article 9/17/2010

This week NPR shared any article about Wiktoid Pilecki who was a Polish army captain, who snuck into Auschwitz to describe the horrors taking place. This weekend is the 70th year anniversary of his milestone and his responsibility in reporting of the prison camp. NPR describes that Pilecki lived in the camp for two and a half years. He had difficulty having his commanders agree to the mission as the article describes. Finally, after being signed off on the mission Pilecki inserted himself Sep. 14, 1940. Pilecki and the public for that matter was never sure what exactly happened outside of the German town of Aushwitz, but, after sneaking in Pilecki was able to release the news to the underground resistance. Pilecki hopped that a surprise attack would come from the resistance, but it never came. London and even the US became aware of Pilecki’s reports but they were disregarded as exaggerations. The NPR article reports one of PIlecki’s descriptions “Here we gave everything away into bags, to which respective numbers were tied. Here our hair of head and body were cut off, and we were slightly sprinkled by cold water. I got a blow in my jaw with a heavy rod. I spat out my two teeth. Bleeding began. From that moment we became mere numbers — I wore the number 4859.”

I thought this article was very interesting because Wiktoid Pilecki is a journalist. Our classroom discussions have been over famous reporters such as David Frost. But, I think our discussions have left out a very important group of journalists, war correspondents. I am sure we have all heard the news from somewhere in the Middle East where a media journalist lost his life. The job of digging up truth can be very surprising and dangerous as I’m sure it was for Wiktoid Pilecki.

Not your every day spill

September 9, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

When BP spilled more than 200 million gallons of oil into the gulf of Mexico and killed 11 workers on the rig, nothing short of a disaster ensued.  Everyone has heard of the leak and everyone blames BP for it. However a article from  NPR released yesterday says,  BP has released a  report that concludes “multiple companies and worker teams” are to blame for the rig explosion and leak. The report goes on to say that “a series of complex events, rather than one mistake lead to this tragedy.” BP is trying to shift some of the blame to Transocean the contractor of the rig and the contractor Haliburton. The NPR article goes on to look fairly at what all three parties have done wrong with the spill. BP had been cutting corners and was 20 million dollars behind on the project. This lead to lack safety measures for example the failure of the blowout preventer. NPR’s article also looks at the other parties responsibility in the mess. Transocean employees could have easily checked the systems before the spill to see there was problem. Haliburton had done a bad job at constructing the well bore.

The way I look at the article is that the report made by BP is pointless. I look at the report as an attempt from BP who is backed into a corner trying to put the fire someplace else; even try to get more time for the hearings that BP is currently being investigated for. Mark Bly head of operations at BP says it all starts with the bad cement in the well. I can agree with this statement, however its your responsibility as a company to test the project from head to toe. If the results aren’t up to standard you take Haliburton to court. BP as a company should of also been aware that any type of budget cutting should never happen to safety measure especially in dealing with a oil well. I think the public will not pay any attention to the report by BP and if anything look down on their attempt to redirect some of the blame, even if some is due.

Where is the Food for Pakistan?

September 7, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

NPR posted an article Yesterday on why less food has been given to support the floods in Pakistan. The article states that only 25 million in donations have been given since August 30. Compared to Haiti, which in the first 5 weeks received over 900 million in aid. Whats the reason for the drastic difference. The article describes major differences in both incidences. The fist being that Earthquakes generate 10 to 15 times as much aid on average do to the immediate damage. Often being faster and having a higher death rate than floods. The article says that most people judge the damage by a natural disaster by its death count. I found this comment to be extremely true, we tend to not be able to grasp the idea that the Pakistan flood may be worse do to the displacement and damage. The article goes on to say that another cause is due to the lack of media coverage of the Pakistan flood. Its estimated that 40% of American homes gave aid to Haiti. I believe both statements by the article but it still does not completely answer, why isn’t the Pakistan floods being covered? The proverbial elephant argument that many people try to not associate with is that, we as Americans associate Pakistan with Terrorism. The article does interview Una Osili who does think that US perception of Pakistan has played a large role.

In general I think all of these are factors. Its a shame that as Americans we can’t crack open our piggy banks to give a little more to give. How can I critique th0ugh, have I given? No, and to be honest I haven’t even thought about it. Compared to Haiti Americans have not shown as much interest to this natural disaster, and maybe its the mind set we have enough problems. Whatever the case, Pakistan is facing an extreme natural disaster.