Spend Matters Friday Latte

Thank goodness we didn't have to call Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck (or Aerosmith, for that matter).
Asteroid to make near-miss fly-by -- An asteroid will pass by the Earth on Friday in something of a cosmic near-miss, making its closest approach at about 1600 GMT. The asteroid, estimated to be about 11m (36ft) in diameter, was first detected on Wednesday. At its closest, the space rock - named 2012 BX34 - will pass within about 60,000km of Earth - less than a fifth of the distance to the Moon.

UN's plans for giant cocaine party foiled.
U.N. Sees an Unexpected Arrival: Bags of Drugs -- If you are a United Nations diplomat missing 30 pounds of cocaine, it is now in the hands of the New York Police Department. Authentic pouches have the words "United Nations" and "Diplomatic Mail" printed on the outside, as well as the body's logo. But these cheap cotton bags had only the logo. There was no wording, no address, no manifest, no airway bill. They had been delivered from Mexico by the courier company DHL, according to diplomats who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the seizure.

Never manufactured here, never planning on doing so.
Apple and Obama -- However, as Charles Duhigg and Keith Bradsher reported Saturday, in my favorite New York Times story of the year so far, Apple doesn't manufacture here and it doesn't expect ever to do so. "Those jobs aren't coming back," Jobs reportedly told Obama at a dinner when the President asked whether it would be possible to make iPhones in America. The wages in Shenzhen are lower, yes, and the factories are brutally efficient. There is also deep intelligence built into Chinese sweatshops. The iPhone manufacturer Foxconn, Duhigg and Bradsher report, "employs nearly 300 guards to direct foot traffic so workers are not crushed in doorway bottlenecks." Everyone knows that Asia pumps out our gadgets; the story makes plain why it will do so for a long, long time.

Obama College Aid Proposal Puts a Focus on Affordability -- President Obama is proposing a financial aid overhaul that for the first time would tie colleges' eligibility for campus-based aid programs -- Perkins loans, work-study jobs and supplemental grants for low-income students -- to the institutions' success in improving affordability and value for students, administration officials said.

- Sheena Moore

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