I take back my former cynicism about using social media for government spend advice-solicitation purposes...
Because I actually think this is pretty cool. -- My home state of Washington set up a website where citizens can present their ideas for changing/reducing the state budget, and then others can go in and vote and comment on the ideas. I'm going to look more into what IdeaScale (the company who powers the site) is capable of. I know there was also a recent article on BBC about this -- does anybody know of any other states/governments using this method?
China attempts to play by the rules.
China Reapplies to WTO Procurement Group -- China said it has submitted a new proposal for membership in the World Trade Organization's Agreement on Government Procurement, a move aimed at addressing international complaints about discrimination against foreign vendors -- but one that foreign analysts say may not go far enough toward easing their concerns. Ministry of Commerce spokesman Yao Jian said at a news conference Tuesday that the government submitted a membership proposal on July 12 to members of the Agreement on Government Procurement, or GPA, a set of standards that grant foreign companies nondiscriminatory access to government purchases.
Propagnada in Top Secret America?
Top Secret America: Where to Send Your Resume -- In today's episode of Top Secret America (yesterday's here), the Washington Post reveals that many secret government agency workers aren't government workers at all--they're private contractors. It's a system described as a "self-licking ice cream cone": private companies woo the government for expensive contracts, private contractors gain experience with secret government business, then private companies hire them away with even better private sector offers. Now, government agencies have been tasked with replacing some of these private contractors with federal positions, but they're finding it difficult to accomplish for a host of reasons.
Look for a post later this week on the dangers of a lean supply chain.