Archive for May 2013

Billing Medicare for cosmetic surgery

May 31, 2013 - 02:10 PM
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Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) -- and other critics of billing Medicare for certain cosmetic surgeries -- think people are gaming the system and that the federal government lets it happen. Case in point: Plastic surgeons charge the government millions for eyelid lifts each year.

Joe Eaton, reporter for the Center for Public Integrity, discussed the issue with Capital Insider.

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Were concerns about the economic impact of sequestration overblown?

May 31, 2013 - 02:05 PM
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The Commerce Department says the U.S. economy grew at a modest 2.4 percent annual rate last quarter. The weakest area continues to be government spending. It fell for the 10th time in the last 11 quarters.

Veronique de Rugy, senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, discussed sequestration's role in the economic equation.

Here's her interview with Capital Insider:

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Federal contracting: A roundup

May 30, 2013 - 04:00 PM
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Computer Sciences Corporation continues to reorganize, Northrop Grumman puts its debt on the auction block, and Amazon wins a huge cloud computing contract.

Jill Aitoro, federal contracting reporter for the Washington Business Journal, discusses the latest headlines with Capital Insider.

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Making the G.I. Bill easier to use and more effective

May 30, 2013 - 03:55 PM
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The Department of Veterans Affairs spends billions of taxpayer dollars each year on the G.I. Bill and other education programs. Can those funds be spent more effectively? And can the process be easier on veterans?

Melissa Emrey-Arras, with the Government Accountability Office, discussed the issue with Capital Insider (read her full report here).

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Macgregor: "Assad and his regime will survive"

May 29, 2013 - 03:40 PM
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Gen. Salim Idris, the commander of the Free Syrian Army, says he's very disappointed that Europe will not immediately ship weapons to his out-gunned fighters. On Monday, the European Union voted to lift its arms embargo against Syria, but they won't ship weapons until after U.S. and Russian led peace talks in Geneva next month.

Meanwhile, the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah is sending thousands of fighters to Syria. Idris calls them the main threat to his forces.

Col. Douglas Macgregor (U.S. Army, retired) breaks down all of the factions involved with Capital Insider.

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NTSB: Skagit Bridge collapse a wake-up call

May 29, 2013 - 03:35 PM
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The National Transportation Safety Board calls last week's Interstate 5 bridge collapse a wake up call. On Thursday, a truck carrying an oversize load fractured I-5 -- one of the major trade and travel corridors on the West Coast (it connects Canada to Washington State). The collapse caused only minor injuries but it could inflict major economic damage.

Ryan Alexander, president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, discussed the issue with Capital Insider.

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That was the week that was

May 28, 2013 - 02:30 PM
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Democratic Strategist Richard Fowler and Republican Strategist Cherylyn Harley LeBon review the week in politics. In this installment, they debate President Obama's national security speech, the future of Guantanamo Bay, U.S. drone policy, and the next step for immigration reform legislation.

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British attack part of a new kind of terrorism

May 24, 2013 - 02:29 PM
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Britain is bracing for clashes with right-wing activists and possible copycat terror attacks by Islamic extremists after the savage slaying of a young soldier. London police said more than 1,000 officers will be sent to potential trouble spots with armed response units.

J.J. Green, national security correspondent for WTOP Radio, discussed the attack and other top issues with Capital Insider.

 

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The driving force behind USA.gov

May 24, 2013 - 02:20 PM
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The Service to America Medals, or Sammies, honor federal workers who show a committment to public service and make the agencies they work for stronger.

Martha Dorris, finalist for the Citizen Services Medal, discussed her work on USA.gov with Capital Insider.

Click here for more information.

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Dimon retains dual role despite tough year

May 23, 2013 - 04:40 PM
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At their annual meeting, JP Morgan Chase considered a measure to split Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon's role in two. Dimon easily survived.

Danielle Douglas, financial reporter for The Washington Post, discussed the implications with Capital Insider.

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Russia remains central to Syrian civil war

May 23, 2013 - 04:30 PM
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On Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry met with Arab and European allies in Jordan. He said President Obama will not send troops to Syria, but promised more aid to rebel forces if Syrian President Bashar Assad doesn't engage in peace talks.

Matthew Brodsky, director of policy for the Jewish Policy Center, discussed that and other issues with Capital Insider.

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Apple casts spotlight on tech firms' taxes

May 22, 2013 - 04:55 PM
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Apple CEO Tim Cook explained the company's tax strategy to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. The tone of that hearing turned tense.

David Williams, president of the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, discussed the hearing and its implications for a possible overhaul of the U.S. tax code.

Here's his interview with Capital Insider.

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Spike in violence in Iraq

May 22, 2013 - 04:50 PM
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On Monday, a wave of bloodshed stretched from north of Baghdad to the southern city of Basra. It targeted Sunni and Shiite communities, killing more than 100 people. The violence continued on Tuesday, as a suicide bomber struck a military checkpoint and militants opened fire on Iraqi troops.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, senior fellow at the Center for Advanced Defense Studies, discussed the future of Iraq with Capital Insider.

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IRS non-profit division is understaffed and overworked

May 21, 2013 - 02:50 PM
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Dave Levinthal, senior political reporter at the Center for Public Integrity, reviewed the applications for 501(c)(4) status. He discussed his findings with Capital Insider.

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Political outrage rolls downhill

May 21, 2013 - 02:45 PM
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The IRS scandal will have an impact on the average "Frank" or "Flo" fed. Joe Davidson, Federal Diary columnist for The Washington Post, discussed that issue with Capital Insider.

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The Pentagon, cloud computing, and a mobile milestone

May 21, 2013 - 02:40 PM
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The U.S. Army's "Distributed Common Ground System" (DCGS-A) is getting a big update. Amber Corrin, national security correspondent for FCW, discussed that and other top tech issues with Capital Insider.

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That was the week that was

May 20, 2013 - 03:50 PM
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Republican Strategist Jack Burkman and Democratic Strategist Mark Levine review the week in politics. In this installment, they debate President Obama's brutal week, new blood-alcohol content recommendations, and Congressional babysitting with Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC).

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FOSE 2013, a view from the floor

May 17, 2013 - 10:55 AM
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Every year, the Federal Office Systems Exposition (better known as FOSE) shows off the hottest gizmos, gadgets, and technology toys. The attendees come from the same cross section we cover on Capital Insider -- the federal government and the business world. This year the expo featured trends in mobility and security.

Mike Conneen gave us a view from the floor.

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Obama: Military justice for sexual assault victims needs to change

May 17, 2013 - 10:50 AM
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On Thursday, President Obama held a war room meeting with America's military leaders. They told him they were "ashamed" of their failure to end sexual abuse in the armed services. After that meeting, Obama promised an accelerated effort to find solutions.

Col. Cedric Leighton, president of Cedric Leighton Associates, discussed that and other top national security issues with Capital Insider.

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Educating America's next crop of specialists in science and tech

May 17, 2013 - 10:45 AM
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President Obama wants to foster domestic growth in the areas of science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine -- a group collectively referred to as STEMM. The Partnership for Public Service and Booz Allen Hamilton studied STEMM trends, and drafted a series of recommendations.

Tom Fox, author of the blog "On Leadership" for The Washington Post, discussed those findings with Capital Insider.

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