In WEST BRANCH MICHIGAN: Why Good Trade Deals Matter to a Business
Nick Martin is the co-founder of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling business. He sent the following email to the White House list to highlight why a better trade deal means a brighter future for online businesses like his.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership isn´t just President Obama´s proposed trade deal -- it´s mine, too. It´s a trade deal that millions of other online small business owners in this country would be proud to add their name to. I want to tell you why:
Every time I step through the doors of one of our 4,000-square-foot warehouses in Boulder and Denver, Colorado -- every time I see the bikes and cycling parts that line those walls and take in the energetic buzz of our 30-member team -- I take a step back and reflect on a simple fact: I own a business. Its a "pinch-me" moment -- every time.
I am a cyclist and the proud co-owner of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling store. And thanks to the Internet and the availability of e-commerce platforms like eBay, we´ve gone global. After all, when its not cycling season in the U.S., its peak season somewhere else in the world.
International customers aren´t just good for business abroad; theyre great for my Colorado communities. Why? Because selling in more markets means I can hire more people here at home. In fact, more small businesses are using the Internet to grow their business by reaching new customers they couldn´t reach before.
This is why trade is so important to me. If the success of American businesses in the global economy is important to you, say youre an ambassador for a better trade deal that delivers a brighter future for all of us.
It may seem like a really remote and technical issue, but it actually has a real impact on how small businesses like mine do business. Currently more than 40% of our transactions cross U.S. borders. Unfortunately, most of our trade rules were written in a "pre-Internet" era, which means they are a nightmare to navigate for small online businesses.
Heres an example: Right now, customs rules are so inconsistent and hard to follow that if we put a cycling part in the wrong packaging or mail it with the wrong label, it wont make it to our customer in one country. The rules are different for each country, and are sometimes set up in a way that completely blocks out American business.
That is why it is so important that we secure the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a new kind of trade agreement that will ensure America writes the rules and levels the playing field for online businesses and American workers by:
Reducing and eliminating tariffs across the Asia-Pacific region
Streamlining customs procedures
Making the rules more transparent, consistent, and less costly
Helping keep the Internet open and free, enabling online businesses to operate without unnecessary infrastructure costs
Of course, as the President has said, not all of our past trade deals have lived up to their promise. Thankfully, this trade deal is on track to be different. In fact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership is shaping up to be the most progressive trade deal the world has ever seen.
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Cautions with Jasbug in WEST BRANCH MICHIGAN
The "Jasbug" is a flaw in the way that computers have access to a network. If any of the hackers had known this since 2000, they could have used to infiltrate computer systems company and take complete control.
Suppose you use your laptop and public access to Wi-Fi to connect to the office computers. Hackers nearby could spy, steal documents or introduce malware ... I mean, everything.
There is still no evidence that someone has taken advantage of Jasbug and did this. But it may be too early to say.
Microsoft considered that the gravity of this situation was "critical". Even Alert guaranteed by the Department of Homeland Security and similar warnings from major companies in cybersecurity.
Jasbug affects everything from Windows Vista to Windows 8.1 newer. This is the kind of problem that will give you many headaches for system administrators and IT staff of the company.
Some mistakes are too embedded in the code. The Jasbug was so embedded that Microsoft had to return to restructure some basic parts of Windows.
Consider this another example of that small defects embedded in computer code could give you problems later. In fact, Microsoft did not even find on your own.
Jeff Schmidt, an independent researcher JAS Global Advisors in Chicago, discovered a year ago while working on another project. He alerted Microsoft and have since worked together to fix this error.
Why it took so long to fix it? Jasbug is a problem with the design of the Microsoft operating system itself. The company had to restructure basic parts of your engine giant ... and test it thoroughly to make sure it still worked fine.
Microsoft can not afford to make arrangements affecting a complete system. Remember that according Netmarketshare, Windows is used by 91% of computers worldwide.
January 26, 2015
Courtesy of Eve Hill and Mark Kappelhoff, Deputy Assistant Attorneys General for the Civil Rights pision
Note: The sample MOU can be found at here.
President Obama established the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault one year ago. On this anniversary, the task force has released a sample memorandum of understanding (MOU) to assist campuses and law enforcement agencies to work together in their efforts to protect students, address the needs of sexual assault survivors, and ensure a prompt, thorough, and fair response to allegations of sexual misconduct. This is yet another important step in the task forces effort to help colleges and universities, as well as their partners in the community, address the problem of campus sexual violence.
While colleges and universities can do much on their own, communication and collaboration between campus administrators, campus police and local law enforcement is critically important to address the problem of sexual assault on campus.
The sample MOU reflects input from task force members and agencies, outside experts on sexual assault, police associations, state attorneys general, and campus administrators and counsels.
Many colleges and universities already have MOUs in place with local law enforcement authorities covering a variety of areas. Our conversations with campus administrators, campus police, and law enforcement have underscored the need for additional tools and strategies that are specifically tailored to the dynamics of sexual assault on campus, as well as the needs of sexual assault survivors. The task force is providing this sample MOU with that in mind.
We recognize that every campus and community is unique and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The sample MOU is, therefore, intended to be a starting point for a conversation between campus administrators, campus police and local law enforcement on how to improve collaborations between critical first responders. We fully expect that, in partnering to address the issue of sexual violence on campus, campus administrators and law enforcement will adapt the provisions of the sample MOU to meet their particular needs and circumstances. For example, some campus and law enforcement authorities may wish to incorporate some or all of the provisions into an existing general campus safety MOU, while others may prefer a standalone agreement specifically addressing campus sexual violence. Still others may decide that some different method of collaboration better meets their needs. We hope that this sample MOU will be an important resource in collaborative efforts between campus administrators, campus police and law enforcement to eradicate sexual assault from college communities nationwide.
Civil Rights pision
Office on Violence Against Women