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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Video of Gov. Rick Perry Criticizing Texas Lawmaker Wendy Davis

Excerpts from a speech that Gov. Rick Perry, a Republican of Texas, delivered on Thursday at the National Right to Life Conference, criticizing Texas lawmaker Wendy Davis.

Two days after Texas lawmaker Wendy Davis vaulted into the political spotlight for helping defeat a bill restricting abortion rights by staging an 11-hour-long filibuster, Gov. Rick Perry said it was unfortunate she had not learned that “every life matters,” given that she was the child of a single mother who went on to earn a Harvard law degree.

In a speech to nearly 1,000 delegates at the conference near Dallas, Mr. Perry struck hard at Ms. Davis, 50, asking the crowd, “Who are we to say that thechildren born in the worst of circumstances can’t grow to live successful lives?”

Then he cited Ms. Davis, as an example, saying she was the daughter of a “single mother. She was
a teenage mother herself. She managed to eventually graduate from Harvard Law School and serve in the Texas Senate.

“It is just unfortunate that she hasn’t learned from her own example that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters.”

Ms. Davis released a statement that said Mr. Perry’s statement was “without dignity and tarnishes the high office he holds. They are small words that reflect a dark and negative point of view. Our governor should reflect our Texas values. Sadly, Gov. Perry fails that test.”

Ms. Davis, whose filibuster helped block the legislation and now has supporters urging her to challenge Mr. Perry i! n the next gubernatorial election, posted on Twitter.

According to the Dallas Morning News, Mr. Perry added to his remarks about Ms. Davis in an interview with reporters.

“I’m proud that she’s been able to take advantage of her intellect and her hard work, but she didn’t come from particularly good circumstances,” the governor said. “What if her mom had said, ‘I just can’t o this. I don’t want to do this.’ At that particular point in time I think it becomes very personal for us.”

Mr. Perry has called a special legislative session for July 1 to consider several bills, including legislation that would limit abortions after 20 weeks and would also impose new regulations on abortion clinics. Republican lawmakers tried unsuccessfully to overcome the filibuster by Ms. Davis on Tuesday night and vote on the bill before the session came to a close at midnight, amid loud jeers from large crowds in the gallery and hundreds of thousands of people watching online.

Opponents of the bill, which would give Texas some of the toughest rules on abortion in the nation, say that the new requirements would lead to the closure of most abortion clinics in the state.

But Mr. Perry said in his speech that the majority of Texas lawmakers “agree that any patient should have the expectation that facilities being used for a procedure are up to standard, and that, when the! re’s an! emergency situation, they can receive the care they need.”

On Monday, when the bill comes up for the vote, opponents are getting ready to fight it. On Twitter, Planned Parenthood promised a battle.

Daily Report: Trying to Fix a Big Flaw in Cellphone Technology

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A Software Feud Ends, At Least For Today

Two of the biggest egos in the technology industry have buried the hatchet.

Larry Ellison of Oracle and Marc Benioff of Salesforce.com, a onetime mentor and his protégé who became sometimes-testy rivals, flattered one another for half an hour Thursday in a joint teleconference with securities analysts and reporters.

Officially, the purpose of the call was to explain how Salesforce.com would now buy more Oracle products, how Oracle would now make its dtabase software and applications work better with Salesforce’s cloud-based software, and how customers would benefit from more integration at lower cost. Both companies are jockeying for position against companies like IBM and Amazon.com in a world where data is increasingly going mobile and moving from customer-owned computers to the cloud.

But the real point seemed to be for the longtime antagonists to show public affection after years of not-always-friendly competition.

“Larry has articulated these market transitions with more clairvoyance than anyone I know,” said Mr. Benioff, who had worked for ! Mr. Ellison at Oracle before leaving to found Salesforce. “By Larry and I coming together, a door has come open that lets us go into the future.”

Mr. Ellison, who co-founded Oracle and built it into one of the most valuable software companies in the world, offered his own praise for what Mr. Benioff has accomplished.

“Marc has never once turned to me to drum up leads for Salesforce.com,” Mr. Ellison said in response to a question about whether Oracle would now send customers to its rival. “I’m sure they are better at that than we are.”

Mr. Ellison, who subscribes to the philosophy of making employees at his company “eat their own dog food” by using Oracle products, noted that almost every company acquired by Oracle used Salesforce software. Now they will get to keep using it, become in-house testers for the product integration between the two companies.

The whole news conference had a surreal, Alphonse-and-Gaston quality, with both men going over the top in their grciousness. One reporter asked if the new partnership meant the pair would now stop taking potshots at each other.

“I certainly hope it’s not the end of the fun,” Mr. Benioff said. “Hopefully it will be the end of us getting too revved up at times.”

Let’s hope not. The world of business software doesn’t have too much excitement in it, and Mr. Benioff and Mr. Ellison are two of the best at peddling their wares and entertaining their audience.

Silicon Valley Luminaries Bet on Clinkle, a Payments Start-Up

Clinkle, a new mobile payments start-up, may or may not have succeeded where so many other efforts have fizzled by inventing a practical way to replace credit cards with smartphones. It’s hard to say, though, since Clinkle won’t say much about how its system works.

But a prominent group of Silicon Valley investors who do know what Clinkle is cooking up are acting as though it has achieved a breakthrough. On Thursday, Clinkle announced that it had raised $25 million in early financing from Accel Partners; Andreessen Horowitz; Intel; Intuit; Marc Benioff, the chief executive of Salesforce.com; Peter Thiel, the co-founder of PayPal; and a long list of other investors with technology industry pedigrees.

Clinkle comes with a variation on the classic tech industry origin story. Its founder and chief executive, Lucas Duplan, created the company in 2011 while he was an undergraduate computer science student at Stanford University. Rather than drop out of schol as Bill Gates did to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams, Mr. Duplan jammed all his Stanford course work into three years.

Mr. Duplan, now 22 years old, is in the process of moving his stealthy, 50-person start-up to San Francisco from Mountain View, Calif.

In an interview, Mr. Duplan offered only the barest of details about how Clinkle would work. It involves a payment app that will work on smartphones and be tied to any existing credit card and bank account.

Clinkle will be relatively painless for merchants to adopt because they won’t have to buy new hardware, a shortcoming of many past approaches by tech companies, Mr. Duplan said. The company’s technology will not require a phone equipped with a near field communications, or N.F.C., chip, a wireless technology that has been adopted by some phone manufacturers for payments, but notably not by Apple.

Clinkle will initially focus on getting merchants around college campuses to adopt its system because they serve largely c! aptive audiences and students tend to be early adopters of mobile apps.

A lot of smart companies have tried and failed at what Clinkle is seeking to do. Google’s Google Wallet system, which only works with phones that have the N.F.C. chip, has been a disappointment. Some individual retailers, like Starbucks, seem to have had better success with retailer-specific payment systems.

But Mr. Duplan said no one yet has come up with a system that allows people to truly leave their wallets at home. “I don’t think anyone has been able to crack the nut in the sense of being able to build something that is a serious contender with cash and cards,” he said.

James Breyer, a partner at Accel who was one of the first investors in Facebook, said he first met Mr. Duplan a couple months ago after an ntroduction by Diane Greene, the co-founder of VMware and another investor in Clinkle. Mr. Breyer said he nosed around with Stanford professors and graduate students about Clinkle and received “resoundingly positive” reports about the technical prowess of Mr. Duplan and his associates.

Mr. Breyer, until recently a Wal-Mart board member, also has a window into how the world’s largest retailer is thinking about mobile payments, a category where he believes the retailer wants to innovate. He said the timing for such innovations is better now than in the past, when other big companies tried and failed with mobile payments.

“I think part of what’s happened is over the last 12 to 18 months, there’s been such an acceleration around mobile and social platforms,” Mr. Breyer said. “A truly transformative way of building next gen payments wasn’t crystallized a couple years ago.”

Video of Mandela’s Daughter Calling Reporters ‘Vultures’

A South African Broadcasting Corporation interview with Makaziwe Mandela broadcast on Thursday amid rumors of her father’s failing health.

As my colleague Declan Walsh reports, Nelson Mandela’s oldest daughter compared the press pack waiting outside the hospital in Pretoria where he remains in critical condition to “vultures” in an interview with South African state television broadcast on Thursday.

Speaking to the South African Broadcasting Corporation, Makaziwe Mandela said that her father “doesn’t look good I’m not going to lie,” but added that the family remained hopeful that the former president might recover.

Asked about the media presence outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital, Ms. Mandela then said:

I don’t want to say this, but I’m going to say it: there’s sort of a racist element with many of the foreign media where they just cross boundaries. You have no idea what’s happening at the hospital. You know in the middle of Park Street, they are standing right there in the aisle â€" you can’t even enter the hospital or you can’t even go out of the hospital, because they are making themselves such a nuisance. It’s like, truly, vultures, waiting when a lion has devoured the buffalo, waiting there to, you know. for the last carcasses. That’s the image that we have as a family. And we don’t mind the interest, but I just think it has gone overboard.

She added: “When Margaret Thatcher was sick in hospital, I didn’t see this kind of media ! frenzy with Margaret Thatcher, where people cross boundaries. Even if they are engaged to say, ‘This is how you behave,’ it doesn’t matter. Is it because we are an African country that people just feel they can’t respect any laws of this country, they can violate everything in the book? I just think it’s in bad taste. It’s crass.”

Fad-Loving Japanese Could Derail Sony’s Smartphone Ambitions

Sony, hoping to use smartphones to turn around its business, is facing the demands of Japan’s cellphone carriers for constant model updates.