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  • When is Safe Safe Enough?

    In designing safe electrical products, the manufacturer addresses the protection against the potential hazards from electric shock, fire and mechanical aspects of the product in operation as intended, and sometimes even when used not as intended. The guidance they use in this effort comes from a significant...
  • Taking a Breather

    Today’s release of May retail sales data was greeted with boos as it showed the first outright monthly decline in consumer spending—and a sizable one at that—since last fall. As we’ve preached in earlier posts, interpreting a trend from one month’s worth of data is a mistake...
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  • State-of-the-Art Roughing It

    Let’s hear it for back-to-basics simplicity, as a latter-day Thoreau might say, but for Henry David’s sake please be electrically secure about it. That’s what I liked about the YMCA family camp we attended over Labor Day weekend. There we were in a wooded, mountain-top setting, properly mixing the old...
  • “Off-Center Stage”

    Flattering as it might be for NEMA – in its role as Chairman of the Zero Tariff Coalition -- to be invited to sit on a panel, there remains the reality of getting through the thing, and so it was with last week’s Global Business Dialogue event on India, free trade and World Trade Organization negotiations...
  • Meet the Guinea Pigs, Part One

    Raising children often seems like a 24/7 press conference, with any topic possible yet no one topic predictable. So of course when I informed the family over dinner that we had won the “NEMA Light Bulb Sweepstakes” , the first question was naturally “What’s a sweepstake?” Patiently, I recounted how Evan...
  • With CPSC in Limbo – Consumers Need to be on Guard

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has had a turbulent year. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be getting any better. Last week CPSC lost its quorum…again. For those of you who may not intimately follow the cloak and dagger politics of the safety world, let me explain why all of this matters...
  • PTA Fundraiser Idea!

    The Washington Post reported recently that two local Virginia counties are using compact fluorescent lamps to raise money for their schools. As part of their spring fund-raising effort, Arlington and Fairfax County school children will be going door-to-door hawking the new bulbs. The fundraiser, which...
  • The Easier Course

    If you’re going to be the Secretary-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), you’d better be a marathoner. Trying to get more than 150 nations -- most all of whom don’t want to reform any of their own “market irregularities” -- to agree on a new international trade liberalization agreement has...
  • NEMA Testifying on Smart Grid Today - Watch it Live!

    NEMA CEO Evan Gaddis is testifying today about Smart Grid before the Senate Committee on Energy and Resources . You can catch a live streaming video of the testimony between 10 a.m. and 12 noon here . FERC, DOE, and NIST present on the first panel, and NEMA, NARUC , Google, and GridWise Alliance present...
  • Bipartisan Approach to Helium Legislation

    Third NEMA/Capitol Hill Word of the Week: helium. (The first two Words of the Week must be either 1) Shaheen and 2) Portman or 1) energy and 2) efficiency.) Yesterday, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) introduced legislation to modernize and reform federal policy to better secure supplies...
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