Au Revoir to a Pioneer

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While we were all sitting down to our Thanksgiving dinner, a pioneer passed away from the complications of an hemorrhagic stroke. Dr. Joseph E. Murray of Peter Bent Brigham (now Brigham and Women’s Hospital), who won the Nobel Prize in 1990 for developing the first living transplant, sharing the honor with Dr. E. Donnal Thomas, who pioneered bone marrow transplants (who died just one month earlier).

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No fracking way!

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I have been amazed that we have build many an ethanol plant in water short areas (like Florida). I have been even more amazed when these same facilities are not designed to reuse the water they employ, which would both save them money- and reduce their impact on the environment. Our numbers show these folks can increase their profits about 3 to 5 cents a gallon- after accounting for the cost of water treatment- by incorporating water reuse.

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Taxes and Deficits

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The fiscal cliff.  Or, the fiscal stepstool.   I’m not trying to say it’s not important- it is. (See my previous post on this matter, here.) We need our politicians to get off their own cliffs and negotiate- honestly.  But, that rarely happens. We have at least two problems.  We have a deficit problem- and we have a recession problem.  To some degree, they are related.  If we were booming, then our deficits would be down- way down.  But, we’re not-we are barely keeping even.  (Sorry, 2% growth is just that. )

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CEO Compensation and Corporate Performance

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I have already discussed the issues with inflated CEO compensation.  One primary cause driving compensation upward is that many firms employ a technique that insures that he (it is typically a he) gets salary increases regardless of the performance at the firm.  I have also discussed the problem that executives are paid ridiculous multiples (not 10 to 50, but 250 to 500 times) of the average pay at their firms.

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