Mitigating High-Impact Threats to Critical Infrastructure: 2013 Conference Proceedings of the InfraGard National EMP SIG Sessions at the Dupont Summit

by Charles L. Manto

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The Electromagnetic Pulse Special Interest Group (EMP SIG) addresses any high-impact threat that could cause long-term nationwide collapse of critical infrastructure. These threats include EMP, extreme space weather, cyber attacks, coordinated physical attacks or widespread pandemics. The EMP SIG provides trusted communications and information for InfraGard members active in any critical infrastructure in any community to enhance planning, mitigation, and sustainable infrastructure. The EMP SIG attracts leading subject matter experts who have agreed to join advisory panels and make themselves available for local InfraGard chapters that may need their special guidance.

The ultimate goal of the national EMP SIG is to assist local communities to enhance their own sustainability with a special emphasis on developing local infrastructure capacity from areas as diverse as local power generation and storage to local food production.

InfraGard’s EMP SIG plans to continue its role in fostering public/private cooperation in a comprehensive “all-of-nation” approach to disaster mitigation and planning. InfraGard members may join the EMP SIG on the InfraGard secure website. To join InfraGard and have access to the secure site, apply on the homepage of http://www.InfraGard.org.

The first time that a broad range of military and civilian government agencies and their private sector counterparts led contingency plans for nationwide collapse of critical infrastructure that could last for more than a month was in October 2011 when the National Defense University, the US Congressional EMP Caucus, InfraGard National’s EMP SIG and Maryland’s Emergency Management Agency co-hosted a series of workshops and exercises covering these scenarios focusing on geomagnetic disturbances.

Since then, the InfraGard National EMP SIG led sessions each year at the Dupont Summit. The sessions covered high-impact threats to critical infrastructure with a special emphasis on geomagnetic disturbance (GMD), and the contingency planning workshops and exercises with the National Defense University and the Maryland Emergency Management Agency. This conference included analysis from NOAA of the July 23, 2012 super solar storm near miss, and research on these impacts on power grids presented at a by-invitation-only session the day before by a number or organizations led by Idaho National Laboratory.

For upcoming events and more information see the EMP SIG section of the National InfraGard secure website or contact the EMP SIG Chair, Chuck Manto, at cmanto@stop-EMP.com.

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Engineering America: The Rise of the American Professional Class, 1838-1920

by Edward Rhodes

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In a single lifespan in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, America passed through an extraordinary economic and social transformation. Industrialization, urbanization, immigration, and westward expansion into the vast interior of the continent yielded the structural framework of the modern America we still recognize more than a century later. The roles played by financial capital, labor, and technology in this story have been widely examined. Less well understand, however, is the remaining puzzle: how did America generate the human capital necessary for this transformation? How did a largely agrarian nation with relatively weak and largely decentralized government institutions manage to produce the professional class – the doctors, lawyers, managers, and, most importantly, engineers – essential for the emergence of a modern, industrialized, yet still liberal and democratic America?

This study takes a micro approach to this question. It focuses on a single, unexceptional case, examining the process and experience through the eyes of a single participant. Born in rural New Jersey in the late 1830s, Daniel Harker Rhodes’s wanderings took him from a tinsmith apprenticeship in upstate New York to service in the Civil War, and then on to secondary education, college education, and eventually a career building railroads that opened up the agricultural potential of the Great Plains, the minerals of the Rockies, and the energy resources of Texas and Oklahoma. Rhodes’s detailed account highlights a number of intriguing factors: the availability of education and private capital to finance it, the absence of class barriers, social institutions and technology that permitted extraordinary geographic mobility, and perhaps most importantly the impact of deeply held Calvinist norms As with any case study, the insights that emerge are suggestive rather than definitive. In this case, however, the insights underscore the significance of an unusual combination of institutions in nineteenth century America and suggest intriguing reasons why America’s pattern of social and economic development followed its distinctive course.

Spring or Cruel Winter?: The Evolution of the Arab Revolutions

by Dr. Alon Ben-Meir

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The Arab Spring, sparked by Tunisian university graduate turned street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi’s act of self-immolation, is an ongoing, integral part of global transformation, ushering in a new era in which no ruler can deprive his citizens of their basic rights. However, this idealism was misjudged in certain areas, specifically evidenced in the violent backlash against the peaceful protests in Syria, a tragedy which is still ongoing.

In this book, Dr. Ben-Meir evaluates the countries involved in the Arab Spring and their varying responses to the widespread calls for equality and social and political reforms across the Middle East. In particular, he examines the cultural, religious, political, and socioeconomic backgrounds of each of the affected countries and how these play a role in each country’s interpretation of the Arab Spring.

Bulwarks Against Poverty in America

by Max J. Skidmore

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In Bulwarks Against Poverty in America, long-time Social Security scholar Max J. Skidmore presents seminal articles selected from the journal Poverty and Public Policy to clear away much of the confusion dominating pubic discussion relating to Social Security, Medicare, and the Affordable Care Act. Experts in the field have praised this important book as a weapon against “misinformation and ideological mischief.” They say it is “a must-read for policymakers,” and a “road map to the debates raging over the future of Social Security, Medicare, and health care reform.” Skidmore’s Bulwarks is a thoughtful contribution to a field heavily influenced by misrepresentation and scare propaganda.

Avant-Garde Politician

Avant-Garde Politician: Leaders for a New EpochBy Yehezkel Dror

In this iconoclastic book, Dror argues that humanity cascades through a metamorphosis, driven mainly by science and technology. Radical human enhancement, synthesis of viruses, quasi-intelligent robots and molecular engineering illustrate the emerging quantum leap, as do value changes ranging between mass-killing fanaticisms to human “maturation.”

Along with the windfall of opportunities for thriving that the emerging epoch offers, dangers of calamities, including the demise of humanity, require thinking in terms of raison d’humanité, a powerful Global Authority and new modes of human existence. Dror argues that a new approach to political leadership is the key to the future of humanity amidst these monumental changes. Our current political leaders are inadequate: new, avant-garde politicians are required to cope with the fateful challenges that lie ahead.

Avant-Garde Politician offers a thorough overview of the changing human condition. The author proposes innovative human survival and thriving imperatives, a Global Humanity Constitutions establishing a decisive global regime, and some radical value changes – including the addition of duties to human rights. He also suggests novel approaches to composing humanity-craft, such as regulating science and technology. And specifies the qualities required from avant-garde politicians together with ways to acquire them.

Based on multiple academic disciplines combined with extensive personal experience of the author in “hot corridors” of power worldwide, this book will be of interest to leaders, policy advisors, scholars, scientists, students, and all concerned about the future of humanity.

Of this work, Michael Marien, WAAS Fellow and Director of Global Foresight Books, has said, “Suffice to say that all members of the US Congress, and national leaders and would-be leaders everywhere (along with leading editors and relevant academics), should spend a week with Avant-Garde Politician if we are to get serious about world order in an undeniable age of metamorphosis and possible global collapse. It won’t happen, of course. But the slim possibility of a maturing humanity would be improved if this were so, and if we could acknowledge the structural problems that keep us from learning about—and seriously debating–more appropriate worldviews for our turbulent times.”

For the full review, visit Cadmus Journal

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Conflicts in Health Policy

Conflict in Health Policy COVER FRONT ONLY

Edited by Bonnie Stabile, Introduced by Randy S. Clemons & Mark K. McBeth

When conflicts arise in health policy, the insights of policy scholars can contribute to crafting solutions to seemingly intractable problems.   Beyond their mere technical attributes, health and medical policy issues require political acumen and policy knowledge to diagnose problems, inform debate, and devise policy interventions.  The cases in this volume cover a range of health issues and illustrate how political theory and philosophy are critical to efforts aimed at treating public health challenges.

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High Impact Threats to Critical Infrastructure: Conference Proceedings of the InfraGard National EMP SIG Sessions 

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Edited and Introduced by Charles L. Manto

The EMP SIG addresses any high-impact threat that could cause long-term nationwide collapse of critical infrastructure. These threats include EMP, extreme space weather, cyber attacks, coordinated physical attacks or widespread pandemics. The EMP SIG provides trusted communications and information for InfraGard members active in any critical infrastructure in any community to enhance planning, mitigation, and sustainable infrastructure. The EMP SIG attracts leading subject matter experts who have agreed to join advisory panels and make themselves available for local InfraGard chapters that may need their special guidance.

The firEMP SIG front cover copyst time that a broad range of military and civilian government agencies and their private sector counterparts led contingency plans for nationwide collapse of critical infrastructure that could last for more than a month was in October 2011 when the National Defense University, the US Congressional EMP Caucus, InfraGard National’s EMP SIG and Maryland’s Emergency Management Agency co-hosted a series of workshops and exercises covering these scenarios focusing on geomagnetic disturbances. In the following December, eight of those participants provided an overview of the results and ramifications of those meetings at the Dupont Summit 2011 hosted by the Policy Studies Organization.

One year later, the Dupont Summit 2012 hosted sessions by InfraGard National’s EMP SIG that updated activities from the prior year ranging from FERC’s notice of a proposed rule making on GMD protection to the new FBI i-Guardian cyber protection program.

These conference proceedings include links to updated on-line exhibits and uploaded videos provide presentations by technology and policy leaders on the most serious threats to technology-based society most likely to be experienced in our life times.