links for 2009-10-03

  • First lady Michelle Obama arrived in Copenhagen Wednesday to offer her support for Chicago’s bid to host the 2016 Olympics. Her husband will leave shortly on Air Force One to meet her there and make his case.
    Thursday morning, Mrs. Obama thanked fellow Chicagoan Oprah Winfrey for joining her in the Olympic pitch saying: “We dropped everything — dropped everything — to be a part of this team.” Praising the team work, the first lady said: “As much of a sacrifice as people say this is for me or Oprah or the president to come for these few days,” the team has been working for years.
    She says her reasons for wanting to bring the games to Chicago, include the impact it could have on young people.
  • The fragile economic recovery has relied heavily on government stimulus spending, but new data show that as the money runs out, a sustained rebound may be elusive.
    The dramatic decline in sales reported Thursday by the Big Three automakers suggested the extent to which the stimulus act has propped up the economy. The government’s wildly popular “Cash for Clunkers” program drove consumer spending to its highest level in eight years in August. But after it ended, so did the growth in auto sales.
    (tags: Economics)

  • The Obama administration has given a green light to the Department of Homeland Security to hire up to 1,000 new cyber experts over the next three years, the first major personnel move to fulfill its vow to bolster security of the nation’s computer networks.
    The announcement follows a wave of cyber attacks on federal agencies, including a July assault that knocked government Web sites off the Internet and earlier intrusions into the country’s electrical grid.
    DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano, who made the announcement on Thursday, said the hiring plan reflects the Obama administration’s commitment to improving cyber security.
    At the same time, however, it underscores the administration’s ongoing struggle to better organize and manage the country’s vulnerable digital defense. President Barack Obama vowed in February to tackle cyber issues, but still has not named a cyber coordinator, a job that experts say will be difficult to fill.

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