Archive for March, 2014

William Keleher

William Keleher

William Aloysius Keleher (1886-1972) became interested in law while observing the events at Bernalillo Country Courthouse. He joined a Law School at Washington and Lee University in Virginia the month of September, 1913. After nearly two years (mid-1915), he received his Bachelor of Law degree and was admitted to the New Mexico Bar after a few months.

After graduating, William Keleher pursued a career in law and relentlessly practiced it. Eventually, he created a law firm that would one day, become the oldest and the most prestigious law firm in New Mexico. In 1929, he was joined by A. Howell McLeod and together, they became the most prominent trial lawyers in New Mexico. William’s sons (William B. Keleher & Thomas F. Keleher) chose to follow the same path, which practiced law at the family firm. Their descendant, Michael, also continued the family tradition by contributing to the growth of Keleher and McLeod. Today, the practice of law at Keleher & McLeod reflects the same dedication and passion, undoubtedly. Although the Keleher & McLeod corp. is not connected to the family, William B. Keleher and Thomas F. Keleher are the proud shareholders of the firm. It is located in Bernalillo County, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Keleher & McLeod’s service promises to fulfill the destiny that guided the founding of the firm a long, long time ago. Its roots are indeed very deep in the state and it has eventually grown into one of the state’s most prominent commercial and civil law practitioners. However, it does not let all the glory get to its head; rather, Keleher & McLeod remains committed to the same legacy, commitment, and competence that made it a big success almost a hundred years ago.

It is universally known that in the long run, service matters the most. The attorneys and staff at this firm are devoted to providing superior-quality legal services to fulfill the requirement of the valued clients, and they do it in a quick yet efficient manner. The attorneys are always responsive and available for any kind of updates on the legal matters’ status.

With over thirty dedicated and adept staff, the firm promises to deliver. All of them are qualified and have vast experience in the field of law. Even when one is working with a single attorney, he will perceive the expertise of the whole firm. The attorneys at the firm can unequivocally be depended on.

Keleher & McLeod is simply unmatched in terms of experience. Being founded in 1915, it boasts as one of the oldest firms in the state. A big chunk of the firms’ employee comes from the UNM School of Law who are not only diligent, but also blessed with vast experience. In addition, they have been taking leadership in local and national professional associations on a regular basis. The firm whose attorneys are active in many social and charitable organizations, also posses a great sense of community. Simply put, the attorneys at Keleher & McLeod, with their vast experience, can be trusted to solve ones legal problems. Keleher & McLeod has represented innumerable prestigious companies and high profile individuals over the past few decades. Among them, Wells Fargo & Co., and affiliated banks, Texaco Inc, Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education, Qwest Corporation, Merrill Lynch, Heller Financial are considered noteworthy.

The Bar Register Practice Areas of the firm are Trusts and Estates, Wills and Probate & Insurance Defense. Keleher & McLeod covers practice areas like Administrative, Antitrust, Bankruptcy, Business, Children, Constitutional, Disabilities, Employee Benefits, Environmental, Government, Conservator-ship, Insurance, Labor and Employment, Mergers, Partnership, Products Liability, Real Estate, Taxation, Trusts and Estates, Wills and many others.

William Aloysius Keleher was a man of vision. In his famous book, Memoirs, he mentioned that he had a feeling that perhaps destiny was guiding him in the direction of the courtroom. This was the pivotal moment when he decided to devote his life to the betterment of law in New Mexico. As a result of his vision and dedication, Keleher & McLeod was created which, even after nearly a hundred year of establishment, relentlessly thrives to fulfill the requirement of the valued clients by providing high quality legal services.

William Keleher
http://www.articlesbase.com/law-articles/william-keleher-69233.html

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Posted by mark - March 31, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Categories: Constitutional Law   Tags:

Ron Paul – America.. Wake UP!

Ron Paul Take 2.. added a minute or so to the first part. Enjoy!

Duration : 3 min 47 sec

Read more…

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Posted by mark - March 29, 2014 at 2:30 pm

Categories: Conservative Ideals   Tags:

How does critical thinking affect reading and writing?

1. How does critical thinking affect you as a reader and writer?
2. How can thinking critically improve your writing?

1. If you think critically as you read, you’ll get more out of your reading. You’ll make your own judgments & not just accept eveything the author says. As a writer you’ll write better ideas because you’ve thought clearly about your ideas.
2. If you think critically you won’t just accept everything you see in your research but you’ll put it together in intelligent ways, to write more persuasive & intelligent papers.

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Posted by mark - March 28, 2014 at 1:35 pm

Categories: Critical Thinking   Tags:

Max Weber-the Life and Work of a Social Theorist (1864-1920)

Max Weber-The Life and Work of a Social Theorist (1864-1920)
Max Weber is a German political economist and sociologist. Weber is considered as one of the leading figures in a new generation of historical political economists in the Germany of the 1890s. Max Weber was born in April 21, 1864, in Erfurt, Prussia. After early studies in the history of commercial law, Weber established himself as one of the leading figures in a new generation of historical political economists in the Germany of the 1890s.
In 1895 Weber “became a full professor in political economy at Freiburg, and then, in the following year, at Heidelberg” (Max Weber, n.d.).
A personal breakdown in 1898 led to his with¬drawal from academic teaching, but did little to impair the flow of his writing, the range of which was enormous. Its unifying focus was a concern with the mutual relationship between legal, political and cultural formations on the one hand, and economic activity on the other. His concern with these issues became increas¬ingly theoretical, involving a systematization of the major categories of social and political life, both universally and as definitive of the specific character of modern western civilization.
Weber made his initial reputation in Ger¬many with a study of the impact of capitalist organization on the agricultural estates east of the Elbe, and its implications for the continued dominance of the Junkers over Germany’s political life. It is for a much wider study, however, of the origins of capitalism itself, that he is best known “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism”, 1904-1985. The uninten¬ded consequence of this ethic, which was enforced by the social and psychological pres¬sures on the believer to prove his salvation, was the accumulation of wealth for investment.
The crucial ques¬tion about his thesis is whether the employment of wage labour that made unlimited accumu¬lation possible in principle, also made it inevitable in practice; whether, that is, the Protestant ethic should be seen as providing a necessary motivation for capitalist accumu¬lation, or rather a legitimation for it in the face of prevalent values favouring conspicuous con¬sumption on the part of a leisured class.
Weber was only comparatively late in his life that he came to think of his work as ‘sociology’, and it is as one of the ‘founding fathers’ of sociology that he is now known. “These characteristic features of German politics during this period are focused in the personality of Max Weber, Germany’s most outstanding political theorist during this epoch” (Mayer, 1957, p.13. Introductory).
The issue is probably impossible to resolve conclu¬sively, since all later examples of capitalist take-off have been influenced by the impact of the original one. The theoretical importance of Weber’s work, however, lies in the challenge it offers to reductionist attempts to treat ideas as simply the reflection of material interests, rather than as mutually interacting with them, or to provide an account of social change without reference to the motivation of the social agents involved, even though the consequences may not be what they intend.
“The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism” (1904-1905) was only the first of a number of works on the economic ethic of the major world religions; the purpose of these was not, as has been claimed, to prove the capitalist spirit thesis by showing its absence elsewhere, but rather to elucidate the distinctive character of modern western rationalism (Weber, 1958). According to Weber, “instrumental rationality” was a universal character¬istic of social action, only in the modern West had the goal-maximizing calculation of the most efficient means to given ends become gene¬ralized.
Weber believed that social hierarchy was inevitable, and that its analysis lay in the relationship to be found between the analytically distinct dimen¬sions of status, property and political or organizational power. Different societies could be distinguished by the predominance of one dimension over the others. If in early capitalism this was property, in advanced capitalism it was organizational power. It was the imperatives of the latter that determined the subordination of the worker at the workplace, not those of property, and such subordination would therefore continue under a system of social ownership.
In Weberian political sociology, alongside the ‘tradi¬tional’ and ‘rational’ principles of legitimacy was a third principle, the ‘charismatic’. This indicated an authority deriving from die person of the leader himself and the compelling power of his message, rather than from tradition or the rules governing a particular office. It was a specifically innovative, non-routinized force in social life.
Crucial therefore to asserting control over bureaucratic administration and securing innovation in face of its conservative tenden¬cies, was to ensure scope for the charismatic principle in the political process. Weber believed this could be provided by the circum¬stances of mass electoral politics. He observed how elections under universal suffrage were becoming a form of plebiscite for or against the party leaders, and were increasing their scope for determining policy over the heads of the individual parliamentary representatives and the party following.
“The Protestant morality that he had come to accept as inescapable destiny came under attack from the youth movement, from avant-garde literary circles such as the one centred on the poet Stefan George, from Neoromantics influenced by Nietzsche and Freud, and from Slavic cultural ideals, exemplified in Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky (Max Weber, n.d.).
Underlying Weber’s conception of democ¬racy as a procedure for producing political leadership lay a basic philosophical assumption that political principles or values could not be grounded in reason or in the historical process, but were matters of subjective commitment and assertion. In their work Hilton and Turner write: ‘Weber and the Austrian School are not obliged to deny the reality of institutions or the idea that actors may act under institutional constraints, or that this constraint may be experienced as an external compulsive force or imperative. Nor need they hold to a social contract or design theory of institutions” (Hilton and Turner, 1989, p.43).
He defined bureaucracy as a system of administration embodying the following characteristics: hier¬archy (each official has a clearly defined competence and is answerable to a superior); impersonality (the work is conducted according to set rules, without arbitrariness or favouritism, and a written record is kept of every transaction); continuity (the office constitutes a full-time salaried occupation, with security of tenure and the prospect of regular advancement); expertise (officials are selected on merit, are trained for their function, and control access to the knowledge stored in the files).
In 1914, Weber finished “Economy and society”. Central feature of Weber’s critique of socialism was that the attempt to replace the ‘anarchy’ of the market and achieve greater equality through social planning would entail an enormous expansion of bureaucratic power, and hence of unfreedom and economic stagnation. Swedberg describes that Weber singles out three levels: “economic phenomena, economically relevant phenomena and economically conditioned phenomena” He writes: “The first of these categories covers economic phenomena in a strict sense, such as economic events and economic institutions; and Weber has little to say about this category except that it includes phenomena ‘the economic aspects of which constitute their primary cultural significance for us'” (Swedberg 1998, p. 18-19)
Sociological theory has been interested in bureaucracy as a social category, representative of the new middle class, and distinct from both capital and labour. As Max Weber put it: “The individual bureaucrat cannot squirm out of the apparatus into which he has been harnessed. (…) He is only a small cog in a ceaselessly moving mechanism which prescribes to him an essentially fixed route of march” (Weber, 1958). This is often referred to as Weber’s iron cage. It is possible t conclude that “Weber’s greatest merit as a thinker was that he brought the social sciences in Germany, hitherto preoccupied largely with national problems, into direct critical confrontation with the international giants of 19th-century European thought Marx and Nietzsche” (Max Weber, n.d.).
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Andrew Sandon
http://www.articlesbase.com/politics-articles/max-weberthe-life-and-work-of-a-social-theorist-18641920-75492.html

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Posted by mark - March 27, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Categories: Founding Fathers   Tags:

See the Promise in our Future

It is difficult to open a magazine or newspaper without seeing an article, if not several articles, on the subject of Barack Obama. His emergence as a Presidential candidate and on November 4, 2008 as President-Elect has captured the attention of the country and the world in a fashion never seen before. Even more surprising is the fact that almost half of the populace in America had never even heard of Barack Obama just two years ago.

Obama’s Background
Barack Obama was born in 1961 in Hawaii; his parents met while attending the University of Hawaii. Barack’s father, Barack Obama Sr., grew up in a small village in Kenya, and his mother, Ann Durham, was originally from Kansas. Obama attended Columbia University in New York and graduated in 1983, and later he went on to Harvard Law School, where he obtained his law degree.

Prior to his entry into politics, Obama worked as a community organizer, a civil rights lawyer and a professor of constitutional law. In 2004, Obama was elected to the U.S. Senate, and in February, 2007 announced his candidacy for the Presidency of the United States. Obama is married and has two daughters.

The Presidential Election
Originally, nine Democratic contenders for the candidacy were announced, but after a series of debates and other campaign activities, Senator Hilary Clinton, former Senator John Edwards and Senator Barack Obama emerged as the front-runners. Until early 2008, Clinton led in nationwide polls, but as the state primary elections began, public support for Obama eclipsed Clinton’s lead. During the same period, the twelve Republican contenders battled for their party’s nomination; Senator John McCain was confirmed as the Republican nominee in March of 2008.

On June 6, 2008, after a 17-month campaign against Clinton, Obama clinched the Democratic nomination. Clinton had characterized herself as the office-seeker with the most experience, while Obama positioned himself as the contender most able to bring much-needed change to Washington. This message was seen again during the course of the general election.

McCain adopted a very similar theme from the start in his campaign against Obama, painting himself as the war veteran with the experience necessary to succeed as President, while Obama continued to emphasize his message of much-needed change for the political system and the country as a whole. After a tumultuous campaign with the candidates’ every word immediately publicized and analyzed by the frenzied media, Barack Obama was elected to the position of President of the United States on November 4, 2008.

President Obama’s Future Challenges
President Obama inherits many formidable challenges: massive financial upheaval, staggering unemployment figures, and a domestic economy that is barely limping along. Additionally, an increasingly unpopular war in Iraq and rising unrest in the ongoing Israel/Gaza conflict mean that Obama has a very full plate indeed. Despite this dismal outlook, he has started quickly assembling an Administration to stem the bleeding and repair the confidence of a shaken nation. President Obama’s message to the country includes encouraging choices to limit further damage in 2009 and, even as the hour is the darkest, to see the promise in our future.

For more information on Barack Obama, visit http://www.obamaaspresident.com.

John Parks
http://www.articlesbase.com/politics-articles/see-the-promise-in-our-future-724841.html

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Posted by mark - March 26, 2014 at 11:41 am

Categories: Constitutional Law   Tags:

Impact of Globalization on Indian Financial Services Industry

BY

Dr.V.V.S.K.PRASAD.,M.Com.,M.B.A.,Ph.D.,

Professor and Head

E-Mail: vskprasad.vempati@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Reforms of the financial sector constitutes the most important component of India’s programme towards economic liberalization.  The recent economic liberalization measures have opened the door to foreign competitors to enter into our domestic market. Deregulation in the form of elimination of exchange controls and interest rate ceilings have made the market more competitive.  Innovation has become a must for survival.

Many  of the providers and users of capital have changed their roles all over the world.  Financial intermediaries have come out of their traditional approach and they are ready to assume more credit risks.  As a consequence, many innovations have taken place in the global financial sector which have its own impact on the domestic sector also. The emergences of various financial institutions and regulatory bodies have transformed the financial services sector from being a conservative industry to a very dynamic one. In this process this sector is facing a number of challenges.

In this changed context, the financial services industry  in India has to play a very positive and dynamic role in the years to come by offering many innovative products to suit the varied requirements of the millions of prospective investors spread throughout the country.

Overview

Reforms of the financial sedctor constitutes the most important component of India’s programme towards economic liberalization.  The recent economic liberalization measures have opened the door to foreign competitors to enter into our domestic market. Deregulation in the form of elimination of exchange controls and interest  rate ceilings have made the market more competitive.  Innovation has become a must for survival.

Many  of the providers and users of capital have changed their roles all over the world.  Financial intermediaries  have come out of their traditional approach and they are ready to assume more credit risks.  As a consequence, many innovations have taken place in the global financial sector. Which have its own impact  on the domestic sector also. The emergence of various financial institutions and regulatory  bodies have transformed  the financial services sector from being a conservative industry to a very dynamic one. In this process this sector is facing a number of challenges.

Growth in financial services (comprising banking, insurance, real estate and business services), after dipping to 5.6% in 2003-04 bounced back to 8.7% in 2004-05 and 10.9% in 2005-06. The momentum has been maintained with a growth of 11.1% in 2006-07.

Impressive progress in information technology (IT) and IT-enabled services, both rail and road traffic, and fast addition to existing stock of telephone connections, particularly mobiles, played a key role in such growth.

      Because of Globalization, the financial services industry is in a period of transition. Market shifts, competition, and technological developments are ushering in unprecedented changes in the global financial services industry. Organizations in this highly competitive and increasingly regulated industry will especially need to focus on making themselves more:

Ø      Adept to face increasing transaction volumes, regulation and the integration of previously disparate global markets

Ø      Agile at identifying and managing risk

Ø      Operationally efficient

Ø      Customer – centric

Ø      Optimized in both business & technology

In this scenario, spearheading IT initiatives has become critically important.

Major spending initiative priorities tend to focus on automation to reduce costs and lessen risk, along with using BPO to gain efficiency and allow internal IT organizations to focus on strategic initiatives. Delivery of these capabilities at a high efficiency level but at low costs is one of the major success factors for any financial services business.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of the present paper is to  examine the status of Financial Services Industry in India and to study the challenges before this industry due to globalization

          To enhance their competitive advantage in this changed environment, financial services institutions are increasingly harnessing new technologies to provide superior customer offerings and streamline internal processes. Today’s dynamic marketplace demands that financial services providers emphasize on technologically advanced, feature-rich solutions, that can operate in real-time and with the highest degree of precision and reliability.

Information technology is increasingly being considered as critical to the strategic direction and the day-to-day operation of financial services firms.

Growth in financial services is being bolstered by the opportunities of demography, emerging markets and ever more innovative products and services. Yet, organisations also face the challenges of mounting competition, more complex regulation and ever more exacting customer expectations. Effective growth strategies are therefore likely to cut across all operating processes and functional boundaries. Key priorities include ensuring that the business model takes full account of customers’ needs, tax, financial and regulatory considerations and the organisation’s capacity to change the way it does business. In turn, the objectives and criteria for success need to be clearly measured.

                    A survey of more than 250 financial services executives carried out by PricewaterhouseCoopers in 2006, found that respondents believe that existing customers will be their main source of organic growth. Creating operations that can retain and deliver profits from customers through their lifetime will demand a significant investment in data gathering and relationship management and may therefore require a shift in the prevailing cost-income model. This includes a re-think of training, reward and performance management strategies including a move from volume-based incentives to rewards geared to client satisfaction and the profitability of the customer over the lifetime of the relationship. Success will also require timely and insightful metrics on customers’ evolving attitudes and preferences.

The  Financial Services & banking industry is changing at a fast pace. These changes are throwing up fresh challenges like managing complex technological divergence in a converging market. Banks strive to constantly offer more to the existing customer base. To achieve this, they emphasize on more targeted technology investments and high-quality service. To remain competitive, financial institutions will have to renew their commitment to investing in new technology strategically — to reduce costs, improve efficiencies, and boost revenue-generating initiatives.

Taking full note of these challenges, OFS puts together its banking practice to help financial institutions improve enterprise performance, comply with regulatory mandates, boost operational efficiency, and better serve their customers through OFS’ spectrum of solutions and services derived from proven track record of domain expertise.

The Challenges

Among the key IT challenges facing the Financial Services industry today is:

  • Preserving investments in old systems while leveraging new technologies to drive down transactions costs, expand and improve customer service
  • Integrating enterprise wide disparate systems to gain operational efficiencies
  • Substantially reducing time for deployment of new systems
  • Reducing IT costs and obtaining better ROIs for new investments in the long-term

                Only a carefully thought out long-term IT strategy backed by execution, implementation and support capability can meet these challenges successfully.

Today’s financial services firms face mounting pressures on all fronts:

  • Credit markets are creating industry turmoil
  • Tightening credit guidelines that threaten revenue streams
  • Growing reporting and risk management obligations like Sarbanes-Oxley, Know Your Customer and Basel II
  • The difficulties of sustaining growth in overly-saturated markets
  • Innovative products that address the needs of a diverse client base such as retirees and young emerging and ethnic segments
  • Growing concerns over customer data security and identity management
  • Increasing competition not just from traditional competitors, but from other organizations that expand their service offerings
  • The complexities that arise from mergers and acquisitions and from expanding into the global marketplace

          Whether we are trying to maintain competitive advantage, looking for ways to position our self better for mergers or acquisitions or expanding into the global marketplace, the challenges are as complex as they are varied. And while we deal with these fundamental concerns, we are met with increasing demands from investors, regulators and customers.

The Answers

How do we succeed in this environment? The first step is to ensure that we have the infrastructure and solutions to support our business strategy. With the right systems in place, our organization can more rapidly comply with regulations, operational risk and security issues. We can also open up new product offerings, reduce customer turnover and minimize fixed costs and maximize productivity. In addition, the companies can leverage outsourcing opportunities to reduce overhead, while still enjoying the scalability they need to support future growth or new initiatives.

The process of globalization has paved the way for the entry of innovative and sophisticated financial products into our country.  Since the Government is very keen in removing all obstacles that stand in the way of inflow of foreign capital, the potentiabilities for the introduction of innovative international financial products in India are very great.   Moreover, India is likely to enter the full convertibility era soon.  Hence, there is every possibility of introduction of more and more  innovative and sophisticated financial services in our country.

Realizing all these factors, the Government of India has initiated many steps to reform the financial services industry.

Ø      The Government has already switched over to free pricing of issues from pricing issues by the Controller of capital issues.

Ø      The interest rates have been deregulated

Ø      The private sector has been permitted to participate in banking and mutual funds and the public sector undertakings are being privatized.

Ø      The Finance Act, 1992 has brought into effect large scale amendments in the tax structure of long term capital gains.

Ø      The Finance Act, 1994 has given a further boost by lowering the lock – in period from 3 years to 1 year, in order to get the entitlement as a long – term capital asset.

Ø      The SEBI  has liberalized many stringent conditions so as to boost the Financial Services Industry.

In this changed context, the financial services industry  in India has to play a very positive and dynamic role in the years to come by offering many innovative products to suit the varied requirements of the millions of prospective investors spread throughout the country.

                                                            *****

 

Dr.V.V.S.K.PRASAD
http://www.articlesbase.com/finance-articles/impact-of-globalization-on-indian-financial-services-industry-737929.html

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Posted by mark - March 25, 2014 at 11:15 am

Categories: Government Reform   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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