JBS CEO Art Thompson's video news update for June 11-17, 2012.

 Adding to its revolutionary navigation service, Google is planning to release a new version of the Google Maps program, offering users a 3D aerial-mapping technology that provides details capable of showing objects just four inches wide. But as U.S. technology companies race to produce aerial maps with greater detail and visibility, critics are posing privacy concerns and warning that America is quickly becoming a surveillance society.

Following another last-minute late-weekend meeting of European Finance Ministers, Spain’s new Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy happily announced that not only would his country receive more bailout funds than it needs, it’s coming without any strings attached. This is because, according to Rajoy, the new measures instituted since the victory of his People’s Party last November have been so effective in bringing common sense and prudent behavior back to the country’s financial markets. Those “radical” fiscal, labor market, and financial sector reforms that were instituted were the key, he said.

 In terminating the Gravity and Extreme Magnetism Small Explorer (GEMS) project, an X-ray telescope mission that was launched to study black holes and various space-time theories, NASA has left taxpayers with a bill worth $43.5 million. The program’s overall price tag was initially marked at $119 million (not including the rocket that was to be launched into orbit), but the space agency has already doled out tens of millions of dollars, and the project was 20 to 30 percent over budget, according to briefing charts received by SpaceNews.com.

The “Catching Up to 1968 Act of 2012,” announced Wednesday by three Democratic lawmakers — Reps. John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), and Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.) — would spike the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10 while mandating that future increases be tied to inflation.

But leaders in the business community say increases in the minimum wage only exacerbate unemployment, as companies must cut their payroll, especially when dealing with a stagnant economy.

After enduring a series of financial and logistical hiccups, California’s landmark high-speed rail project has become increasingly unpopular among voters, as the project’s enormous price tag continues to inflate and as the state’s budgetary woes grow more severe.

 

 Ah, the hypocrisy of the Left. Former Vice President Al Gore travels the world in a private jet to lecture everyone else on reducing carbon emissions. First Lady Michelle Obama tells people to eat veggies while she and her husband consume burgers, fries, cheesesteaks, and ice cream. And New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, trying to ban super-sized sodas on the theory that doing so will curb obesity, gives away free soda in unlimited quantities to employees of his media conglomerate, Bloomberg L.P.

Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Elmendorf testified on Wednesday before the House Budget Committee about the federal government’s “Long Term Budget Outlook.” His office just released its latest study which showed two scenarios: one bad, the other worse.

 Words such as "autism" and "poor" are redefined in misleading ways to justify draining more money from the public in taxes, expanding the government, and allowing politicians to give handouts to people who are expected to vote for their reelection.

As the Greek economy descends into political and economic chaos, it's only natural for Americans to wonder how the United States can avoid such a catastrophe. Greece is descending into a debt vortex from borrowing too much, and can no longer keep up with domestic demands for social welfare payments.

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