Wandering Eye: A plan for Larry Hogan to save a little money, the Duquette-to-Toronto saga continues, and more

Thomas Firey at the Maryland Public Policy Institute has a minor money-saving idea Maryland can pursue, and send a message, under the impending governorship of Larry Hogan: get rid of and not replace those "Martin O'Malley, Governor" placards attached to the foot of the "Welcome to Maryland" signs along Maryland roadways. Firey believes the practice originated when William Donald Schaefer became governor in the 1980s, and notes it continued under each successive administration. He contends that ending it, while saving a bit of money, would signal that Hogan "will not join in a small but corrupt political practice: using state money and resources for personal promotion." Hogan, he continues, should "halt the practice and impart opprobrium on it so that future governors will be hesitant to resume it." (Van Smith)

 

BBC News reports cyber-attack "war games" are going to be staged by the U.S. and Britain, wherein each country's military hackers will go after the other's financial sector. British Prime Minister David Cameron has reportedly said "that there should be no 'means of communication' which 'we cannot read.'" Which segues nicely into Baltimore cryptographer Matthew Green's recent blog post, cheekily titled "Hopefully the last post I'll ever write on Dual EC DRBG." Green gets into some heavy tech specs but the takeaway is this: The National Security Agency has basically already made Cameron's dream reality, by strongly encouraging an encryption standard based on a faulty random number generator (aka Dual EC DRBG) to which the NSA apparently has the key. "This is the danger with standards," Green writes. "Once NIST puts its seal on an algorithm, it's considered 'safe.' If the NSA came to a company and asked it to use some strange, non-standard algorithm, the request would be considered deeply suspicious by company and customers alike. But how can you refuse to use a standard if your biggest client asks you to? Apparently RSA couldn't." There's more about how and why this has happened, but it’s enough to remember that bottom line. (Edward Ericson Jr.)

 

Turns out the whole Dan Duquette-to-Toronto saga is far from over. After weeks of silence, the murmurings that the Orioles' executive vice president of baseball operations would be bolting for a president's job in with the Blue Jays were red hot once again. Some reporters on Twitter said a deal was almost done. Ever the lawyer, Peter Angelos broke his typical silence and was adamant that this is not going to happen, noting Duquette has a contract with Baltimore. Still, it's interesting to see a Sun report yesterday about the plan that's in place if it does, featuring a list of four well-known former GMs: Ned Colletti, Kevin Towers, Omar Minaya, and Kevin Malone. Always smart to cover your ass, of course. But it also may be a sign of just how serious these rumors are. (Brandon Weigel)

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