As 2013 Nears So Too Does the Fiscal Cliff – Plus the DorobekINSIDER 7 Stories

On GovLoop Insights’ DorobekINSIDER:
  • There were pockets of real leadership and satisfaction success in government. The National Credit Union, NASA and the FDA all topped the Best Places to Work survey. So what was their secret? Click here for the full recap.
But up front: Fiscal Cliff Watch New York Times: Speaker John Boehner wants to move forward with his plan to increase tax rates only on income over $1 million and leave in place spending cuts to military and domestic programs. Political: Boehner is trying to strengthen his negotiating hand, give himself more legislative options, show his House Republican Conference that he is willing to play hardball and shift blame if they can’t come to an agreement.
“The truth is that both the president and House Republicans have agreed to shrink a critical part of the government to its smallest in at least half a century. This is regardless of which trillion-dollar proposal gains the upper hand,"NYT.
And the Wilson Center has published a new report: Too Big to Succeed: The Need for Federal IT Reform.
“For IT to become sustainable, the federal government must enable change in three areas: (a) embracing agile development, modular contracting, and opensource software; (b) encouraging small business participation; and (c) shifting the federal IT culture through education and experimentation. The adoption of these reforms is vital. The current state of federal IT undermines good work because of its inefficiency and waste.”
And Barack Obama is TIME's 2012 Person of the Year. The SEVEN stories that impact your life
  1. An independent inquiry into the attack on the United States diplomatic mission in Benghazi faulted the State Department for a lack of seasoned security personnel and for ignoring requests for more guards. Investigators of the deadly terror attack on a U.S. diplomatic outpost in Libya report to Congress today. Testimony from the Accountability Review Board takes place this morning in a secret hearing before the Senate and House Foreign Affairs Committees. An unclassified version of the report scores State Department leaders and managers for gross security lapses in the Sept. 11 incident. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was to testify, but she fell and suffered a concussion. Clinton issued a statement saying she accepted the panel's 29 recommendations.
  2. Politico reports,President Obama plans to announce guns task force. The president will announce the first step on gun control following the Newtown shootings: an interagency task force, led by the vice president, charged with guiding the administration’s continuing response.  
  3. The White House has announced the four finalists in its annual SAVE Awards. The White House received 10,000 ideas, compared to 19,000 last year. The four finalists are Frederick Winter of the Education Department, Angela Leroux of the IRS, James Szender of the Interior Department and Laurie Dempsey of Homeland Security. .
  4. Federal news radio says federal unions are pouncing on a compromise plan in the fiscal cliff talks. President Barack Obama and Speaker John Boehner are both said to support a plan to reduce Cost of Living Allowances for federal and military retirees. The American Federation of Government Employees said Obama "could not have picked a worse item" to support. The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association rejected the measure as well. The COLA adjustment, which would also affect Social Security, would save nearly $220 billion over 10 years.
  5. Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) died yesterday at 88. He first came to Washington as a member of the House in 1959. Federal News Radio reports Inouye was born in Honolulu and was the first Japanese American to serve in Congress. He was elected to the Senate in 1963, He won re-election to a ninth term in 2010, receiving 75 percent of the vote. Inouye was a World War II medal of honor recipient. He joined the famed Japanese-American 442nd Regimental Combat Team. He lost his right arm from a grenade explosion in Italy. Inouye turned down an offer to be Hubert Humphrey's running mate in the 1968 presidential race. His reported last word was "aloha."
  6. Federal News Radio reports, Border Patrol agents won't serve as interpreters for local police any longer. Rather, they'll pass on requests for language help to private contractors. Police in many areas called the Border Patrol to assist when they pull over someone who does not speak English well. But, in a letter to the departments of Homeland Security and Justice, immigration advocates questioned agents' objectivity. They said Border Patrol agencies called to interpret ask people questions about immigration and in some cases arrest them. The Border Patrol said the new guidance helps it use its resources efficiently.
  7. And on GovLoop, tomorrow the DorobekINSIDER is hosting a live panel on the big tech trends for 2012.  Check it out tomorrow at noon. We will also archive the broadcast right here.
The DorobekINSIDER water-cooler fodder
  • TickrBlog: Nielsen’s State of Media: The Social Media Report 2012
  • Forbes: 10 Reasons Your Top Talent Will Leave You
  • Secrecy News: Can Disclosures of Classified Information Be Authorized?
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