2015 US Government Budget



Why Paul Ryan’s Budget Is A Fantasy

Rep. Paul Ryan, the chair of the House Budget Committee, released the fiscal-year 2015 House Budget proposal on Tuesday, a largely political document that will help shape the partisan debate ahead of the 2014 midterm elections.

As with some of his past budget proposals, Ryan will have trouble explaining the details and the means that get to the end — a balanced budget. This year, the consensus on the most implausible parts of his plan comes on two fronts.

The first are the levels at which non-defense discretionary spending is set in the budget. Discretionary spending is comprised of  spending on programs that have to be reauthorized by Congress every year, not including entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

The second is an accounting trick that is likely to be controversial, and that some call a gimmick.

The last year of the budget window, 2024, gives a good example of what Ryan does to balance the budget:

  • He ups non-defense discretionary cuts by $50 billion in 2024.
  • He assumes lower war spending by about $25 billion that same year.
  • He still needs a trick to get the budget to complete balance. Ryan uses a “dynamic” scoring method that helps balance his budget — one that could generate controversy. The “macroeconomic feedback effect” assumes the macroeconomic effects of cutting deficits will lead to about $74 billion in savings in 2024.

The non-defense discretionary spending levels, especially in the last year, seem to be the most implausible part of the budget. In 2024, per the budget, the non-defense discretionary spending levels would be $467 billion — a 22 percent cut from post-sequester levels.  In raw dollars, that’s lower than it was in 2005. It’s also much lower than the 2013 level of $576 billion.

Loren Adler, a research director at the  at  Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, told Business Insider it would “c ertainly be one of the toughest pieces to feasibly achieve.”

In inflation-adjusted terms, it amounts to about a 29 percent cut from current levels. According to a Senate Democratic aide, it’s also 28 percent below the average amount of the non-defense discretionary spending levels during the Bush administration.

By 2024, the Ryan budget adds $483 billion to defense spending beyond sequester-set spending caps. But to get overall savings, the budget cuts $791 billion from non-defense discretionary spending.

“NDD levels by end of budget window totally implausible — damage to safety net as well,” Jared Bernstein, a former Obama administration economist and now a senior fellow at the left-leaning  Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, said in an email.

Ryan also uses the accounting trick to achieve balance. It’s a method he hasn’t employed in past budgets, and one that usually isn’t used by the Congressional Budget Office when scoring legislation. Ryan says the “macroeconomic feedback effect” of the deficit-cutting provisions in his budget will amount to $175 billion in savings over the 10-year budget window. And about $74 billion of that will come in the last year — coincidentally providing the U.S. with a $5 billion surplus.

Here’s Ryan’s reasoning for doing so:

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated several times over nearly 20 years that congressional action to reduce deficits will ultimately result in lower interest rates and faster economic growth by freeing up savings for use in productive investment. In addition, CBO has estimated that the positive economic effects of deficit reduction will feed back into the budget and further reduce deficits and debt over the medium and longer term.

Ryan notes the CBO used such dynamic scoring, for example, in 1998, when analyzing the 1998 bipartisan budget resolution that planned to balance the budget. But in general, the CBO says it does not usually analyze the macroeconomic effects due to several reasons (emphasis added):

Doing macroeconomic analysis of all proposed legislation would not be feasible; nearly all legislation analyzed by CBO would have negligible macroeconomic effects anyway (and thus negligible feedback to the federal budget); and estimates of macroeconomic effects are highly uncertain.

In his budget last year, Ryan included guidance about the macroeconomic effects to argue how his budget would be even better for deficits than the numbers showed. However, he did not employ the scoring method to achieve a balanced budget.


Republican budget proposes deep cuts in domestic programs

4/1/14 2 hours ago By David Lawder – Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Representative Paul Ryan, the leading Republican voice on budget policy, rolled out a new fiscal blueprint on Tuesday that calls for deep cuts in domestic programs, increased defense spending and a goal of erasing annual deficits in 10 years.

Ryan’s budget, called the “Path to Prosperity,” has almost no chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate but is expected to serve as a campaign manifesto for Republicans in November’s congressional elections.

It proposes to kill President Barack Obama’s 2010 healthcare reforms and revives cuts in social programs such as the popular Medicare entitlement for the elderly that Ryan, who chairs the House Budget Committee, has proposed in other recent budgets.

The plan calls for savings of $5.1 trillion over a decade, with the goal of reaching a balanced budget by 2024 with no new tax revenues but increased defense spending.

Nearly $2.1 trillion would be saved over a decade by the proposal to kill Obamacare, according to the plan.

A sweeping overhaul of Medicare has been slightly revised, with phased-in changes applying to workers 55 years old and younger, compared to last year’s proposal which affected workers who were 54 and younger.

The document aims to bolster Republicans’ credentials as the party of fiscal prudence, but could open them up to fresh attacks from Democrats, who are calling for steps to reduce the gap between the rich and poor.

For more: http://news.yahoo.com/republican-budget-proposes-deep-cuts-social-programs-143537137–business.html;_ylt=AwrTWVVA.TpT_kMAeebQtDMD


Pelosi Statement on Ryan Republican Budget

April 1, 2014

Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today after Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan released this year’s version of the House Republican budget:

“Today, Republicans have laid out their vision for a less prosperous America, demonstrating, yet again, the weakness of their arithmetic and the strength of their indifference to the concerns of struggling middle class families across the country.  They are proving the lengths they will go to protect the special interests at the expense of the public interest.  They are undermining seniors, students, and the middle class, crippling our economic competitiveness, and gutting our nation’s investments in the future – all to protect loopholes for the wealthy few and corporations that ship jobs overseas.

“Under this Republican budget, the wealthy and well-connected wouldn’t be asked to pay even a little more.  But seniors would be asked to pay more for preventive services and prescription drugs and see the end of the Medicare guarantee.  Families would witness devastating cuts to research, innovation, education, clean energy, and manufacturing, ceding economic leadership to other nations.  All Americans would see a budget that rejects comprehensive immigration reform, with its promise of job creation, stronger small businesses, a growing economy, and a shrinking deficit.

“Democrats have a better approach: creating jobs, strengthening the middle class, investing in our infrastructure and our children’s education, closing the opportunity gap, and responsibly reducing the deficit.  Together, we can reignite the American Dream and build an economy that works for everyone.”


Hoyer Statement on Republican Budget for Fiscal Year 2015

April 1, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in response to the House Republican budget for Fiscal Year 2015:

“No one ought to be surprised at the budget unveiled by Chairman Paul Ryan and House Republicans today, which once again asks those with less to give more and those with more to give less.  This year’s Republican budget builds on the disastrous approach Republicans have followed over the past three years, embracing the painful and irrational sequestration cuts and slashing funding that supports investments in opportunity, growth, and security.

“While anyone who looks at the FY2015 Republican budget can readily see that it would do serious damage to our economy and society, Republicans do their best to hide the extent of the damage.  As in previous years, Chairman Ryan relies on gimmicks, magic asterisks, and spurious accounting assumptions to presume that his budget will achieve its anticipated deficit savings.  Additionally, his budget ends the Medicare guarantee as we know it, turns Medicaid into a block grant, repeals the Affordable Care Act [aka ObamaCare], fails to invest in job creation, and does not include any new revenue.  His budget simply doesn’t work – and would lead to significant harm for our country.

“Last week, I delivered a speech in which I called on both parties in Congress to maximize every opportunity to move us closer toward the long-term fiscal sustainability that our country needs.  Our budget process is just such an opportunity; unfortunately, House Republicans chose to make it a partisan messaging exercise rather than a real effort to achieve balanced deficit savings and invest in the programs that strengthen our economy, grow our middle class, and help more of our businesses and families Make It In America.”


Statement by the White House Press Secretary on the House Republican Budget

April 01, 2014

To build real, lasting economic security for the middle class, the President and Democrats in Congress have a plan to grow our economy from the middle out, not the top down, and create more opportunities for every hardworking American to get ahead. Unfortunately, Republicans in Congress do not have a plan that works for the middle class and the House Republican Budget is the same old top-down approach. Because of a stubborn unwillingness to cut the deficit in a balanced way by closing tax loopholes for the wealthy and well connected, the House Republican Budget would slow the economy, stack the deck against the middle class, and threaten the guaranteed benefits seniors have paid for and earned.

The House Republican Budget would raise taxes on middle class families with children by an average of at least $2,000 in order to cut taxes for households with incomes over $1 million. It would force deep cuts to investments in our roads and bridges, scientific research to cure diseases like Alzheimer’s and at every level of education from early childhood to community college. It would end Medicare as we know it, turning it into a voucher program and risking a death spiral in traditional Medicare. Instead of ensuring that Americans earn a fair wage for a hard day’s work and lifting millions of people out of poverty, the House Republican approach undermines Americans working hard to support their families by slashing food stamps and Medicaid. And rather than expanding health coverage for all Americans and making it more affordable, it would repeal the Affordable Care Act, raising health care costs on families and businesses and eliminating coverage for the 3 million young adults who have gained coverage by staying on their parent’s plan, the millions of people who have signed up for private insurance plans through the Marketplaces, and millions more who can continue to gain coverage through Medicaid.

The House Republican Budget stands in stark contrast to the President’s Budget, which would accelerate economic growth and expand opportunity for all hardworking Americans, while continuing to cut the deficit in a balanced way. The President has put forward a Budget that rewards hard work with fair wages, equips all children with a high-quality education to prepare them for a good job, puts a secure retirement within reach, and ensures health care is affordable and reliable, while at the same time asking the wealthiest to pay their fair share and making tough cuts to programs we can’t afford. And by paying for new investments and tackling our true fiscal challenges, the President’s Budget builds on the progress we’ve already made to cut the deficit by more than half since 2009 and cuts the deficit as a share of the economy to 1.6 percent by 2024. It also stabilizes the debt as a share of the economy by 2015 and puts it on a declining path after that.

Budgets are about choices and values. House Republicans have chosen to protect tax breaks for the wealthiest rather than create opportunities for middle class families to get ahead. The President believes that is the wrong approach and that we should instead be making smart investments necessary to create jobs, grow our economy, and expand opportunity, while still cutting the deficit in a balanced way and securing our nation’s future.


A State-by-State Breakdown of the Damage That Would Be Caused by the House Republican Budget

Amy Brundage April 09, 2014 05:13 PM EDT

House Republicans this week are voting on a budget that protects tax breaks for the wealthiest rather than create opportunities for middle-class families to get ahead. It is the same old top-down approach and would raise taxes on middle-class families with children by an average of at least $2,000 in order to cut taxes for households with incomes over $1 million.

As in previous years, the House Republican Budget proposes deep funding reductions that would result in severe cuts to critical areas that are needed to support job creation, economic growth, a strong middle class, and assistance for lower income individuals, especially when compared to the overall level of investment in the President’s budget. Since House Republicans aren’t willing to identify specifically what they actually want to cut, one way to assess the potential damaging impact is to look at what would happen to key programs if the cuts compared to the President’s budget were applied evenly across the board.

The results show the potential extent of the damage across the country. Within a few years:

  • In Florida, 290,000 seniors benefited from the closure of the Medicare Part D prescription drug donut hole in 2013 alone and at least that many likely would have to pay more for their needed medications in future years.
  • In California, more than 50,000 fewer students would receive Pell Grants to help them pay for college.
  • In Ohio, the proposed Medicaid block grant would cut federal Medicaid funding for the state by more than $30 billion over the next decade, likely resulting in more uninsured individuals and less care for those still covered.
  • In Texas, 12,000 fewer children would receive Head Start services.
  • In Pennsylvania, more than 100,000 people would lose job search assistance.
  • In Missouri, 1,700 fewer victims of domestic violence would be served through the STOP Violence Against Women Program.

A full list of state-by-state impacts can be found here.



President Obama’s 2015 Budget Proposal


Opportunity for All: Ready to Work

President Obama signs exec action for long-term unemployed

President Obama signs exec action for long-term unemployed

The State of the Union Fact Sheet: Opportunity for All

The State of the Union Fact Sheet: Opportunity for All can be found HERE and below.

MIDDLE CLASS SECURITY & OPPORTUNITY AT WORK – Making Progress Through Executive Action

* Raising the Minimum Wage to $10.10 for Those Working on New Federal Contracts. The President will issue an Executive Order to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 for the individuals working on new federal service contracts.

* Creating “myRA” – A New Starter Savings Account to Help Millions Save for Retirement. The President is using his executive authority to create “myRA” (my Retirement Account) – a new simple, safe and affordable “starter” retirement savings account that will be available through employers and help millions of Americans save for retirement.

* Building a 21st Century Workplace for America’s Working Families.
In spring of 2014, the White House, the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Center for American Progress (CAP), will host a Summit on Working Families to set an agenda for a 21st century workplace to ensure America’s global economic competitiveness in the coming decades.

“Made In Rural America” Export and Investment Initiative.
President Obama directed his Administration, working through the White House Rural Council, to lead a new “Made in Rural Americaexport and investment initiative. This initiative is charged with bringing together federal resources to help rural businesses and leaders take advantage of new investment opportunities and access new customers and markets abroad.

* Aggressive Reform and Expansion of SelectUSA to Create the First-Ever Federal Effort to Bring Jobs from Around the World to the U.S. The President has made bringing investment back to the U.S. a core priority of the federal government. He is using his executive authority to create the first ever whole-of-government effort to attract investment through expansion and enhancement of SelectUSA.

* Launching Four New Manufacturing Innovation Institutes in 2014. Launching Four New Manufacturing Innovation Institutes in 2014. To support investment in our manufacturers’ competitiveness and accelerate innovation in manufacturing, the President will use his executive authority to launch four new manufacturing innovation institutes this year, a co-investment by the private sector and Federal agencies, led by the Departments of Defense and Energy.

Wide Bandgap Semiconductors, Raleigh, NC
Focus: Electronic optoelectronic and power devices

Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute, Chicago, IL
Focus: Manufacturing and software companies to develop interoperable software and hardware for supply chains and to reduce manufacturing costs.

One Institute, Detroit, MI
Focus: Lightweight and modern metals manufacturing and design technologies

National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, Youngstown, OH
Focus: Developing and commercializing manufacturing technologies through public-private partnerships between U.S. industry, universities, and federal government agencies

Government-wide Review of Federal Training Programs to Help Americans Get Skills in Demand for Good Jobs. In the coming days, the President will announce the details of a plan to conduct a program-by-program review of federal training programs to be more focused on the skills needed in high-demand sectors.

Partnering With CEOs to Put the Long-Term Unemployed Back to Work. The President is asking every business leader in America to help the long-term unemployed get into jobs because we are stronger when America fields a team at full strength.

* Cutting Red Tape for Infrastructure Investment. In order to accelerate economic growth, the President is taking action to improve the efficiency of the Federal permitting process, cutting through red tape and getting more timely decisions on Federal permits and reviews, while ensuring that projects that are approved lead to better outcomes for our communities and the environment that would lead to new jobs.

* Increasing Fuel Efficiency for Trucks and Saving Families Money. The President will propose new incentives for medium- and heavy-duty trucks to run on natural gas or other alternative fuels and the infrastructure needed to run them.

* Partnering with States, Cities and Tribes to Move to Energy Efficiency and Cleaner Power. As part of the Climate Action Plan, the President directed his Administration to work with States to develop clean energy and energy efficiency policies that would lead to new jobs.

* Promoting Safe and Responsible Production of Natural Gas. Natural gas is helping to reduce carbon pollution, and the Administration is taking steps to make production safer that would lead to new jobs.

* Aggressive Reform and Expansion of SelectUSA to Create the First-Ever Federal Effort to Bring Jobs from Around the World to the U.S. The President has made bringing investment back to the U.S. a core priority of the federal government. He is using his executive authority to create the first ever whole-of-government effort to attract investment through expansion and enhancement of SelectUSA.

Continuing to Work With Congress

Continuing to Work With Congress

* Extending Emergency Unemployment Insurance for Americans Looking for Work.
The President urges members of both parties to come together right now to at a minimum pass a bipartisan three-month extension under consideration in the Senate.

* Raising the Minimum Wage to $10.10. The President will continue to call on Congress to pass the Harkin-Miller plan to raise the Federal minimum wage for working Americans in stages to $10.10 and index it to inflation thereafter, while also raising the minimum wage for tipped workers for the first time in over 20 years.

* Rewarding Hard Work by Expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). President Obama’s Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit expansions benefit 15 million families each year, providing an average tax cut of about $800. The President is now calling on Congress to pass a significant increase in the EITC for workers without children, including non-custodial parents.

* Removing Retirement Tax Breaks for the Wealthiest While Improving Them for the Middle Class. The President’s budget will propose to establish automatic enrollment in IRAs (or “auto-IRAs”) for employees without access to a workplace savings plan, in keeping with a plan that he has proposed in every budget since he took office. And, the President wants to work with Congress to make sure that when we take steps to reform our tax code that we also reform upside-down retirement tax incentives.

* Supporting Workplace Fairness for Women. The President reiterated his call for Congress to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act that would strengthen the Equal Pay Act and give women more tools to fight pay discrimination.

* Workplace Equality for LGBT Workers. Today, federal law prohibits employment discrimination based on race, sex, religion, and disability. It’s time to add sexual orientation and gender identity to that list, so that no American worker can lose his or her job simply because of who they are or who they love. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would provide strong federal protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender workers. Last year, a bipartisan majority of the Senate passed ENDA, and the President renews his call for the House to do the same.

* Continuing to Call for a Grand Bargain on Jobs to Pay for Investments in Infrastructure by Reforming Business Taxes and Closing Loopholes that Help Companies Ship Jobs Overseas. As the President first proposed in Chattanooga in July 2013, he stands ready to work with Congress on a grand bargain for middle-class jobs that pairs comprehensive reform to simplify our business tax code with investments to rebuild America’s infrastructure that create more good construction jobs that our economy needs right now.

* Transforming Communities Across the Country into Global Centers of Advanced Manufacturing through a National Network of Manufacturing Institutes. The President is continuing to call on Congress to create up to 45 manufacturing innovation institutes over 10 years, tripling that number from the 15 institutes originally proposed in his 2012 and 2013 State of the Union addresses.

* Supporting and Scaling Innovative Partnerships Between Community Colleges and Other Public and Non-Profit Entities to Reorient Training Efforts to be Job-Driven. The President wants to work with Congress to increase funding to allow more workers of all ages to access training programs that will provide the skills that lead to good jobs and careers, and are more accountable for results.

* Leveling the Playing Field and Opening New Markets for American-Made Products. The President wants to work with Congress to update its guidance and role in trade and pass Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) legislation with the support of a broad coalition of both parties in Congress.

* Fully Funding SelectUSA to Increase by Five-Fold the Number of People Who Wake Up Every Day With the Sole Focus of Bringing Jobs Home. The President will work with Congress to fully fund the SelectUSA initiative so that we can increase by a factor of five the number of dedicated personnel that wake up every day entirely focused on bringing jobs to the U.S. The initiative will make sure that we have experts overseas and put in place the investment specialists we need in headquarters to handle the increase in cases already seen from the influx of demand for SelectUSA.

* Protecting American Innovation from Patent Trolls. The President renews his call for Congress to pass patent legislation, which enjoys strong bipartisan support. In the coming weeks, he will announce progress on Administration initiatives on patent reform to simplify and strengthen our patent system for a 21st century economy — helping companies focus on innovation, not litigation.

* Supporting America’s Job Creators through a Small Business and Entrepreneurship Agenda. The President wants to work with Congress on a small business package that will broaden capital access, cut and simplify taxes for small businesses, and invest in intensive entrepreneurship education.


A Down Payment on Expanding Opportunity for America’s Long-Term Unemployed

Secretary Tom Perez, Gene Sperling February 21, 2014

As part of his plan to build an economy where everybody who is willing to work hard and take responsibility can get ahead, President Obama is focused on doing everything we can to create new jobs here in America – while also connecting more ready-to-work Americans with ready-to-be-filled jobs.

That’s why this week the administration announced the availability of applications for $150 million in “Ready to Work Partnership” grants designed to help those facing long-term unemployment upgrade their skills and build bridges to jobs in growing areas like information technology and advanced manufacturing. These competitive grants will support partnerships between employers, nonprofit organizations and America’s public workforce system that not only continue building the pipeline of skilled workers, but do so by helping the long-term unemployed overcome some of the barriers they face in finding jobs.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/02/21/down-payment-expanding-opportunity-america-s-long-term-unemployed

USDA StrikeForce

Secretary Vilsack Expands StrikeForce Initiative to Address Rural Poverty in Four Additional States

Targeted efforts now operational in persistent poverty areas in 20 states, including Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee and West Virginia

PINEVILLE, Kentucky, January 17, 2014

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack joined Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear and Congressman Hal Rogers today to announce the expansion of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s StrikeForce Initiative into four additional states: Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee and West Virginia.

“The StrikeForce strategy of partnering public resources with local expertise is helping to grow rural economies and create jobs in persistent poverty communities,” said Vilsack. “This is a strategy that is working in rural America and I am pleased that we continue to build on these efforts to bring assistance to areas that need it the most.”

Vilsack also noted that the StrikeForce strategy is having concrete results in communities across the country.

Since 2010, through StrikeForce, USDA has partnered with over 400 community organizations, businesses, foundations, universities and other groups to support 80,300 projects and ushered more than $9.7 billion in investments into rural America, including:

* The Farm Service Agency saw a 14 percent increase in the total direct farm loan applications received in StrikeForce areas since the beginning of the initiative.

* In fiscal year (FY) 2013, the Farm Service Agency provided nearly $9.3 million to fund microloans in StrikeForce areas. Approximately 84 percent of the loans were provided to socially disadvantaged and beginning farmers.

* Last year, the number of landowners applying for Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) programs in StrikeForce areas increased by 82 percent over the previous year.

* In FY 2013, the Rural Housing Community Facilities Program obligated a total of $68 million to fund hospitals, libraries and other projects in StrikeForce areas—a 4.5 percent increase over 2012.

* Between 2012 and 2013, the Food and Nutrition Service doubled the redemption of SNAP benefits at farmers markets from $2 million to over $4 million in StrikeForce states—a more than 100 percent increase.

* In 2012, USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service increased the number of children in StrikeForce states receiving free or reduced price school breakfasts by 7.4 percent.

“Through StrikeForce, we are able to reach people in new ways and bring resources to them directly,” said Vilsack. “We are learning better ways to help communities leverage their assets and bring opportunity to their residents.”

Today’s expansion brings StrikeForce attention to more than 700 rural counties, parishes, boroughs, tribal reservations, and Colonias in 20 states, including Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.

USDA identifies census tracts with over 20 percent poverty (according to American Community Survey data) to identify sub-county pockets of poverty. As areas of persistent poverty are identified, USDA staff work with state, local and community officials to increase awareness of USDA programs and help build program participation through intensive community outreach.

StrikeForce is part of the Administration’s commitment to addressing persistent poverty across America. Last week, President Obama announced the first five of twenty Promise Zones, including one in southeastern Kentucky, that target federal resources to cities, rural areas and Tribal communities suffering the worst poverty.

Visit www.usda.gov/StrikeForce to learn more.


Office of Science & Technology


STEM Icons WH Science, Tech & Innovation

Office of Science & Technology Policy

Congress established the Office of Science and Technology Policy in 1976 with a broad mandate to advise the President and others within the Executive Office of the President on the effects of science and technology on domestic and international affairs. The 1976 Act also authorizes OSTP to lead interagency efforts to develop and implement sound science and technology policies and budgets, and to work with the private sector, state and local governments, the science and higher education communities, and other nations toward this end.

OSTP’s Mission

The mission of the Office of Science and Technology Policy is threefold; first, to provide the President and his senior staff with accurate, relevant, and timely scientific and technical advice on all matters of consequence; second, to ensure that the policies of the Executive Branch are informed by sound science; and third, to ensure that the scientific and technical work of the Executive Branch is properly coordinated so as to provide the greatest benefit to society.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ostp

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NEWTON Ask A Scientist is an online community for science, math and computer science teachers and students. NEWTON is operated byArgonne National Laboratory.

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Halloween : Special Effects Gases

Name: Mitchell
Status: student, Grade: 6-8
Location: MI, USA
Date: April 2009


Are there any gases that can be made, that are not harmful whatsoever to the human body, and have no effects, but look like so poisonous gas. We are making a movie for science class and my teacher said it should be a secret agent one but still with science.


Hello Mitchell,

You could always use dry ice, which produces a colorless gas. It is the sublimation of solid carbon dioxide (CO2) at any temperature above -78.5 °C (-109.3 °F) and at atmospheric pressure to form CO2 gas. It is commonly used for Halloween props and movies.

However, safety precautions must be taken when handling the dry ice as it is extremely cold, having a sublimation point of -78.5 °C (-109.3 °F), and must be handled with suitable gloves to avoid severe burns. Additionally, as with any gas, it should be used in a well-ventilated area because any gas can become toxic in higher concentrations as it displaces the oxygen that we breathe.

Just do all the research necessary to ensure you are taking all necessary safety precautions.

Another idea: If you want to “color” the gas, you could always try shining different colored lights on the gas to give it a “poisonous” appearance. Good luck and please be safe.

Hope this helps,
Joel Jadus


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WH We the Geeks: The Stuff Superheroes Are Made Of


WH We The Geeks

We the Geeks: The Stuff Superheroes Are Made Of

Posted by Tom Kalil and Meredith Drosback on July 17, 2013 at 03:15 PM EDT
President Obama on Halloween with SpidermanPresident Obama pretends to be caught in Spider-Man’s web as he greets Nicholas Tamarin, 3, just outside the Oval Office. Nicholas was trick-or-treating with his father, White House aide Nate Tamarin in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

This week, as thousands of sci-fi and superhero enthusiasts gather in San Diego for Comic-Con, here at the White House we’ll be gathering some of the Nation’s top innovators who are designing materials to enable real-lifesuperpowers—including invisibility and super-strength.

Join us this Friday, July 19th at 12:00 pm EDT for a “We the Geeks” Google+ Hangout on “The Stuff Superheroes Are Made Of – where we’ll be talking about some of the most exciting new developments in materials science and how they can change our world for the better.

You’ll meet American scientists and innovators working on materials and technologies with amazing capabilities—seemingly ripped straight from the pages of a comic book or film script—including invisibility cloaks,impenetrable liquid armorself-healing, touch-sensitive synthetic skin, and more. You’ll also hear how the Obama Administration’s Materials Genome Initiative – which just celebrated its second birthday – is helping to enable and accelerate these breakthroughs with the goal of making them happen faster and cheaper than ever before.

The Hangout will feature a panel of leading experts including:

Hear from the scientists and engineers who are working to turn science fiction into science fact by watching the latest “We the Geeks” Hangout live on WhiteHouse.gov and on the White House Google+ page on Friday, July 19, at 12:00 pm EDT.

Got comments or questions? Ask them using the hashtag #WeTheGeeks on Twitter and on Google+ and we’ll answer some of them during the live Hangout.

Tom Kalil is Deputy Director for Technology and Innovation at OSTP and Meredith Drosback is a TMS Fellow working on the Materials Genome Initiative at OSTP.

Learn more about White House Technology 


Marvel Comic Book and Cachet Set

With these 20 colorful stamps, the U.S. Postal Service salutes stars from the world of Marvel Comics. For decades, Super Heroes have been synonymous with the comic book medium. Their adventures have provided an escape from every day life and demonstrate that individuals can make a difference. Comic books aren’t simply “kid stuff”—adults have always been among their readers, and the form has attracted its share of serious artists and writers. And Super Heroes have responded to social and political issues from their beginnings.Ten stamps on the pane of 20 are portraits of individual Marvel characters: Captain America, Elektra, Iron Man, Silver Surfer, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman, Sub-Mariner, The Incredible Hulk, The Thing and Wolverine.The other 10 stamps depict individual Marvel Comic book covers. Information about the artwork shown on each stamp appears on the back on the stamp pane.


The National Academy of Sciences 150th Anniversary


NAS 150th Anniv

The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a non-profit organization in the United States. Members serve pro bono as “advisers to the nation on scienceengineering, and medicine“. As a national academy, new members of the organization are elected annually by current members, based on their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

The National Academy of Sciences is part of the National Academies, which also includes:

The group holds a congressional charter under Title 36 of the United States Code.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Academy_of_Sciences


On March 3, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Act creating the National Academy of Sciences. Throughout its history, the Academy has promoted excellence in science through the election of its members and original research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and has provided independent, authoritative advice on matters related to science, engineering, and medicine—leaving a lasting impact on science, the nation, and the world. This year, we celebrate our 150th anniversary with a range of activities that focus not only on the history of the NAS but also in large part on the story of science itself and its role in building and shaping our country and establishing its place in the world.

Anniversary Highlights

Public Symposium—The NAS at 150: Celebrating Service to the Nation and Excellence in Science

The Academy will offer a free public symposium on Monday morning, April 29, as part of its 150th annual meeting in Washington, DC.  In this symposium, leading historians Daniel Kevles, Ruth Schwartz Cowan, and Peter Westwick will provide an overview of the founding of the Academy and its place in American democracy. The talks by Drs. Westwick and Cowan will be followed by roundtable discussions with panelists who are personally familiar with the work of the Academy and with the issues raised in the talks. Read More and Register Online »

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PBO NAS 150th Annv

21st Century Drug Policy


21st Century Drug Policy

Drug Policy Reform In Action: A 21st Century Approach

Posted by Cameron Hardesty on April 24, 2013 at 10:16 AM EDT

The President has outlined his vision of an America built to last—where an educated, skilled workforce has the knowledge, energy and expertise to compete in the global marketplace. Yet–for far too many Americans–that vision is limited by drug use, which not only diminishes the potential of the individual, but jeopardizes families, communities and neighborhoods.

The economic costs of drug use are enormous: In 2007 alone, illicit drug use cost taxpayers more than $193 billion in lost productivity, healthcare, and criminal justice costs. But the human costs are worse. Nationwide, drug-induced overdose deaths now surpass homicides and car crashes as the leading cause of injury death in America.

We are not powerless to address these challenges. And as recent data has shown, we are not unable to reverse these trends. Prescription drug abuse is beginning to decline. Cocaine use and related overdoses are dropping. And recent data show the nation’s prison and jail population dropping for the third straight year.

Today we are releasing a science-driven plan for drug policy reform in America to build upon this progress. This 21st century drug policy outlines a series of evidence-based reforms that treat our Nation’s drug problem as a public health issue, not just a criminal justice issue. This policy underscores what we all know to be true: we cannot arrest or incarcerate our way out of the drug problem.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2013/04/24/drug-policy-reform-action-21st-century-approach

PBO Drug Policy Reform Plan

Office of National Drug Control Policy 
Policy and Research
Prescription Drug Abuse
Treatment and Recovery
President Obama’s Plan
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The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline  1-800-273-TALK

Subustance Abuse & Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) http://findtreatment.samhsa.gov

White House Science Fair & Earth Day 2013


#WH Science Fair STEM IconsWH science_fair

On Monday, April 22, President Obama will host the 3rd Annual White House Science Fair and celebrate the student winners of a broad range of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions from across the country.

This year’s Science Fair will showcase students projects such as economically-viable algae biofuel, a robot that paints with watercolor, a computer program that improves cancer detection and many more.

To learn more about the White House science fair, check out the video above, and be sure to tune in Monday, April 22 starting at 11:30 am EDT, right here at wh.gov/sciencefair, to watch the event live.


Earth Day
Earth Day is April 22

Environmental Action means taking the simple steps in the place where we live. By choosing to act on five or more of these ideas you are joining thousands of others who are doing all they can to be a good and responsible citizen of the world.

Volunteer or Attend a Earth Day Event near you

Environmental Action You Can Take:
At home and in the garden
At work
At school
While shopping
In your community
On the road

The Obama Administration is committed to protecting the air we breathe, water we drink, and land that supports and sustains us. From restoring ecosystems in the Chesapeake Bay and the Everglades, to reducing mercury pollution from power plants, we are bringing together Federal agencies to tackle America’s greatest environmental challenges such as:

Recovery Act Investments in our Environment
Protecting Our Oceans 
Supporting Land Conservation
Prioritizing Clean Water
Reducing the Environmental Impacts of Mountaintop Coal Mining
Reducing Air Pollution From Vehicles and from Power Plants
Restoring our Treasured Great Ecosystems
Working Toward Environmental Justice
Supporting Sustainable Communities
Modernizing the National Environmental Policy Act
Reducing Global Emissions of Mercury


Fiscal Year 2014 WH Budget & Ch. Capt. E.J. Kapaun, Medal of Honor


Fiscal Year 2014 WH Budget Proposal of the US Government

April 10, 2013

Remarks by the President Announcing the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget

Rose Garden

11:00 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Good morning, everybody.  Please, please have a seat.  Well, as President, my top priority is to do everything I can to reignite what I consider to be the true engine of the American economy:  a rising, thriving middle class.  That’s what I think about every day.  That’s the driving force behind every decision that I make.

And over the past three years, our businesses have created nearly 6.5 million new jobs.  But we know we can help them create more.  Corporate profits are at an all-time high.  But we have to get wages and incomes rising, as well.  Our deficits are falling at the fastest pace in years.  But we can do more to bring them down in a balanced and responsible way.

The point is, our economy is poised for progress — as long as Washington doesn’t get in the way.  Frankly, the American people deserve better than what we’ve been seeing:  a shortsighted, crisis-driven decision-making, like the reckless, across-the-board spending cuts that are already hurting a lot of communities out there — cuts that economists predict will cost us hundreds of thousands of jobs during the course of this year.

If we want to keep rebuilding our economy on a stronger, more stable foundation, then we’ve got to get smarter about our priorities as a nation.  And that’s what the budget I’m sending to Congress today represents — a fiscally responsible blueprint for middle-class jobs and growth.

For years, the debate in this town has raged between reducing our deficits at all costs, and making the investments necessary to grow our economy.  And this budget answers that argument, because we can do both.  We can grow our economy and shrink our deficits.  In fact, as we saw in the 1990s, nothing shrinks deficits faster than a growing economy.  That’s been my goal since I took office.  And that should be our goal going forward.

At a time when too many Americans are still looking for work, my budget begins by making targeted investments in areas that will create jobs right now, and prime our economy to keep generating good jobs down the road.  As I said in my State of the Union address, we should ask ourselves three questions every day:  How do we make America a magnet for new jobs?  How do we give our workers the skills they need to do those jobs?  And how do we make sure that hard work leads to a decent living?

To make America a magnet for good jobs, this budget invests in new manufacturing hubs to help turn regions left behind by globalization into global centers of high-tech jobs.  We’ll spark new American innovation and industry with cutting-edge research like the initiative I announced to map the human brain and cure disease.  We’ll continue our march towards energy independence and address the threat of climate change.  And our Rebuild America Partnership will attract private investment to put construction workers back on the job rebuilding our roads, our bridges and our schools, in turn attracting even more new business to communities across the country.

To help workers earn the skills they need to fill those jobs, we’ll work with states to make high-quality preschool available to every child in America.  And we’re going to pay for it by raising taxes on tobacco products that harm our young people.  It’s the right thing to do.  (Applause.)

For the entire speech: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/10/remarks-president-announcing-fiscal-year-2014-budget

PBO economy quote

Mid-Session Review

The Budget

Analytical Perspectives

Historical Tables

Supplemental Materials


Past Budgets

US Budget Deficit By Year 2008-2013

Deficit reduction picks up speed

May 14, 2013 4:05 PM EDT By Steve Benen – maddowblog

This is just astounding.

If the current laws that govern federal taxes and spending do not change, the budget deficit will shrink this year to $642 billion, CBO estimates, the smallest shortfall since 2008. Relative to the size of the economy, the deficit this year — at 4.0 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) — will be less than half as large as the shortfall in 2009, which was 10.1 percent of GDP.

Thanks in large part to higher taxes on the wealthy, which Republicans said would not reduce the deficit, deficit reduction is picking up speed at a pace few could have predicted. We’re now looking at over $400 billion in deficit reduction in just one year, and about $800 billion in deficit reduction since President Obama took office.

Let’s say this plainly: for those who saw the federal budget deficit as a “problem,” it’s fair to say this problem has been largely fixed.

And while we’re at it, let’s also not forget that Republican talking points on fiscal policy have effectively been left in tatters, and every conservative political figure who’s declared “Socialist Obama is turning America into Greece!” looks incredibly foolish right now.

The president took some heat for failing to cut the deficit in half in his first term, and the criticisms had merit, at least insofar as he didn’t reach his original goal. That said, Obama’s on track to cut it by well over half — both in real terms and as a percentage of GDP — in five years.

It’s time to stop worrying a shrinking deficit and start worrying about creating a more robust economic recovery.


White House Press Secretary Annoucement on the CBO’s Deficit Report:

“the CBO report yesterday, the so-called baseline reestimate. And the improvements in the CBO’s report show that the President’s policies of cutting the deficit by more than $2.5 trillion in a balanced way are contributing to the most rapid deficit reduction since World War II. The most rapid deficit reduction since World War II.

While there is still more work to be done to cut the deficit, this is important progress because we strengthen America by growing the economy from the middle out. Working with leaders from both parties, President Obama has cut the deficit by more than half when measured as a share of GDP. This is a balanced deficit reduction that cuts waste, asks millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share in taxes, and preserves investments we need in energy, education, and manufacturing to grow the economy and create jobs.

The administration is committed to continuing to work with Congress to create jobs, reduce the deficit, and replace the sequester in a balanced way.

Later this week, we understand that CBO will be putting out a reestimate of the President’s budget, which includes, as you know, his plan to replace the economically damaging sequester with a balanced approach to deficit reduction that would help drive stronger economic growth in the short.”

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney at the 5/15/13 White House Press Conference


The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government. It is bestowed by the President in the name of Congress on members of the United States Armed Forces who distinguish themselves through “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.

Members of all branches of the armed forces are eligible to receive the medal, and there are three versions; one for the Army, one for the Air Force, and one for the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. The Medal of Honor is bestowed upon an individual by the passing of a Joint Resolution in the Congress; and is then personally presented to the recipient or, in the case of posthumous awards, to next of kin, by the President of the United States, on behalf of the Congress, representing and recognizing the gratitude of the American people as a whole.

Medal of Honor

On April 11, President Barack Obama will award Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.

Chaplain Kapaun will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his extraordinary heroism while serving with the 3d Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy at Unsan, Korea and as a prisoner of war from November 1-2, 1950.


BRAIN Initiative


Brain Initiative Info graphic

Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative


The NIH Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative is part of a new Presidential focus aimed at revolutionizing our understanding of the human brain. By accelerating the development and application of innovative technologies, researchers will be able to produce a revolutionary new dynamic picture of the brain that, for the first time, shows how individual cells and complex neural circuits interact in both time and space. Long desired by researchers seeking new ways to treat, cure, and even prevent brain disorders, this picture will fill major gaps in our current knowledge and provide unprecedented opportunities for exploring exactly how the brain enables the human body to record, process, utilize, store, and retrieve vast quantities of information, all at the speed of thought.

For more: http://www.nih.gov/science/brain/?sf11140127=1

What is the NIH Brain Initiative?

Why is the NIH BRAIN Initiative needed?

Why is now the right time for the NIH BRAIN Initiative?

How will the NIH BRAIN Initiative work?

How will the NIH BRAIN Initiative be supported?

NIH Director’s Blog: Welcoming the BRAIN Initiative, April 2, 2013

Charge: NIH BRAIN Working Group (106KB – PDF)

Roster: NIH BRAIN Working Group (114KB – PDF)

NIMH Director’s Blog: Brain Awareness, March 11, 2013

NIH Director’s Blog: The Symphony Inside Your Brain, November 5, 2012

Center for Brain Science: Brainbow External Web Site Policy

Map of human brain

April 02, 2013

Remarks by the President on the BRAIN Initiative and American Innovation

East Room
10:04 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you so much. (Applause.) Thank you, everybody. Please have a seat. Well, first of all, let me thank Dr. Collins not just for the introduction but for his incredible leadership at NIH. Those of you who know Francis also know that he’s quite a gifted singer and musician. So I was asking whether he was going to be willing to sing the introduction — (laughter) — and he declined.

But his leadership has been extraordinary. And I’m glad I’ve been promoted Scientist-in-Chief. (Laughter.) Given my grades in physics, I’m not sure it’s deserving. But I hold science in proper esteem, so maybe that gives me a little credit.

Today I’ve invited some of the smartest people in the country, some of the most imaginative and effective researchers in the country — some very smart people to talk about the challenge that I issued in my State of the Union address: to grow our economy, to create new jobs, to reignite a rising, thriving middle class by investing in one of our core strengths, and that’s American innovation.

Ideas are what power our economy. It’s what sets us apart. It’s what America has been all about. We have been a nation of dreamers and risk-takers; people who see what nobody else sees sooner than anybody else sees it. We do innovation better than anybody else — and that makes our economy stronger. When we invest in the best ideas before anybody else does, our businesses and our workers can make the best products and deliver the best services before anybody else.

And because of that incredible dynamism, we don’t just attract the best scientists or the best entrepreneurs — we also continually invest in their success. We support labs and universities to help them learn and explore. And we fund grants to help them turn a dream into a reality. And we have a patent system to protect their inventions. And we offer loans to help them turn those inventions into successful businesses.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/02/remarks-president-brain-initiative-and-american-innovation


April 02, 2013

Fact Sheet: BRAIN Initiative

In his State of the Union address, the President laid out his vision for creating jobs and building a growing, thriving middle class by making a historic investment in research and development.

Today, at a White House event, the President unveiled a bold new research initiative designed to revolutionize our understanding of the human brain. Launched with approximately $100 million in the President’s Fiscal Year 2014 Budget, the BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) Initiative ultimately aims to help researchers find new ways to treat, cure, and even prevent brain disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, and traumatic brain injury.

The BRAIN Initiative will accelerate the development and application of new technologies that will enable researchers to produce dynamic pictures of the brain that show how individual brain cells and complex neural circuits interact at the speed of thought. These technologies will open new doors to explore how the brain records, processes, uses, stores, and retrieves vast quantities of information, and shed light on the complex links between brain function and behavior.

This initiative is one of the Administration’s “Grand Challenges” – ambitious but achievable goals that require advances in science and technology. In his remarks today, the President called on companies, research universities, foundations, and philanthropists to join with him in identifying and pursuing the Grand Challenges of the 21st century.

The BRAIN Initiative includes:

* Key investments to jumpstart the effort
* Strong academic leadership
* Public-private partnerships
* Maintaining our highest ethical standards

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/04/02/fact-sheet-brain-initiative

BRAIN Initiative Challenges Researchers to Unlock Mysteries of Human Mind

Francis Collins and Arati Prabhakar April 02, 2013 10:15 AM EDT

Today at the White House, President Obama unveiled the “BRAIN” Initiative—a bold new research effort to revolutionize our understanding of the human mind and uncover new ways to treat, prevent, and cure brain disorders like Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, autism, epilepsy, and traumatic brain injury.

The BRAIN Initiative — short for Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies — builds on the President’s State of the Union call for historic investments in research and development to fuel the innovation, job creation, and economic growth that together create a thriving middle class.

The Initiative promises to accelerate the invention of new technologies that will help researchers produce real-time pictures of complex neural circuits and visualize the rapid-fire interactions of cells that occur at the speed of thought. Such cutting-edge capabilities, applied to both simple and complex systems, will open new doors to understanding how brain function is linked to human behavior and learning, and the mechanisms of brain disease.

In his remarks this morning, the President highlighted the BRAIN Initiative as one of the Administration’s “Grand Challenges” – ambitious but achievable goals that require advances in science and technology to accomplish. The President called on companies, research universities, foundations, and philanthropies to join with him in identifying and pursuing additional Grand Challenges of the 21st century—challenges that can create the jobs and industries of the future while improving lives.

In addition to fueling invaluable advances that improve lives, the pursuit of Grand Challenges can create the jobs and industries of the future.

READ MORE: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2013/04/02/brain-initiative-challenges-researchers-unlock-mysteries-human-mind



“If we want to make the best products, we also have to invest in the best ideas… Every dollar we invested to map the human genome returned $140 to our economy… Today, our scientists are mapping the human brain to unlock the answers to Alzheimer’s… Now is not the time to gut these job-creating investments in science and innovation. Now is the time to reach a level of research and development not seen since the height of the Space Race.”

President Barack Obama, 2013 State of the Union


Presidential Innovation Fellowship



“We must harness new ideas and technology to remake our government.”

- President Barack Obama, January 21st, 2013

.Presidential Innovation Fellows

Presidential Innovation Fellows

The Presidential Innovation Fellows program pairs top innovators from the private sector, non-profits, and academia with top innovators in government to collaborate on solutions that aim to deliver significant results in six months. These projects have straightforward goals: to improve the lives of the American people, save taxpayer money, and fuel job creation. This is innovation aimed at making a difference for all Americans.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/innovationfellows/opendata

. .

2nd Round Projects

Disaster Response & Recovery

Collaboratively building and “pre-positioning” needed tech tools ahead of future emergencies or natural disasters in order to mitigate economic damage and save lives.

Learn More


Simplifying the process of finding and accessing information and government services that are right for you.  Helping American businesses access the information and services that will help them grow, hire American workers, and export to foreign markets.

Learn More

RFP-EZ and Innovative Contracting Tools

Making it easier for the government to do business with small, high-growth tech companies, and enabling the government to buy better, lower-cost tech solutions from the full range of American businesses.

Learn More

Cyber-Physical Systems

Working with government and industry to create standards for a new generation of interoperable, dynamic, and efficient “smart systems” – an “industrial Internet” – that combines distributed sensing, control, and data analytics to help grow new high-value American jobs and the economy.

Learn More

Open Data Initiatives

Accelerating and expanding efforts to make government information resources more publicly accessible in “computer-readable” form and spurring the use of those data by entrepreneurs as fuel for the creation of new products, services, and jobs.

Learn More

MyData Initiatives

Empowering the American people with secure access to their own personal health, energy, and education data.

Learn More

Innovation Toolkit

Developing an innovation toolkit that empowers our Federal workforce to respond to national priorities more quickly and more efficiently.

Learn More

21st Century Financial Systems

Moving financial accounting systems of Federal agencies out of the era of unwieldy agency-specific implementations to one that favors more nimble, modular, scalable, and cost-effective approaches.

Learn More

Development Innovation Ventures

Enabling the US government to identify, test, and scale breakthrough solutions to the world’s toughest problems.

Learn More


House Hangout: The Maker Movement

March 28th at 3:00 PM ET

White House innovation advisor Tom Kalil will join a Google+ Hangout to discuss the Maker Movement with leading innovators and Makers from around the country live on WhiteHouse.gov, or tune in to the White House’s Google+ page or YouTube channel. You can also join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #WHHangout.

During the Hangout, Tom Kalil will discuss the elements of an “all hands on deck” effort to promote Making, with participants including:



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