Noontime News is a snapshot of our RSS feeds from the noon (Eastern time) hour.

CHART OF THE DAY: ‘Out Of Control Spending’ Not Really Out Of Control At All

“It’s taken as an article of faith in Washington that government has gotten too big, spending is out of control, and government has to tighten its belt, just like everybody else. Even President Obama takes this view.

But a close look at the numbers reveals a few important, and frequently overlooked facts.”

Panetta Under Pressure To Slash Defense Spending

“This 4th of July Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who just took over at the Pentagon on Friday, has a lot more on his mind than patriotism and fireworks.

Panetta is already being forced to walk a fine line between those in his party looking for even bigger defense cuts than his predecessor Roberts Gates recommended and critics who worry that too much streamlining will produce a hollow force.”

Texas Governor Wages Own Battle Along Border

“The federal government claims the southwest border is more secure than it’s ever been. There are more agents and barriers, more choppers, drones, sensors and hi-tech cameras than ever before.

Yet, state officials in Texas maintain the illegal flow of people and drugs is worse than ever — proof, they say, the border is out of control. To back up his rhetoric, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has declared his own war on the traffickers.”

GOP 2012 Presidential Candidates
Six Months, Seven Fails: The Opening Round Of Campaign 2012 (VIDEO)
Bachmann At Iowa Church: Pray For God To ‘Heal Our Land’

Smartphones Making It Harder To Call It Quits

“For some, smartphones have become digital leashes to the office. They can log on and check in at work from just about anywhere. And while this is good for employers, it’s making it harder for employees to disconnect and relax — even when they’re on vacation.”

Japan reconstruction minister quits in fresh blow to PM

“TOKYO (Reuters) – Beleaguered Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan took another blow on Tuesday when his reconstruction minister resigned after barely a week in the job over criticism for remarks that offended victims of the March earthquake and tsunami.”

Read More: Fukushima residents dump radiated soil in absence of plan

Microsoft strikes deal with China’s biggest search engine Baidu

“Boost to both brands, but English-language search results will be censored to meet Chinese government’s demands”

Good News: The Key To Disaster Survival? Friends And Neighbors

“A researcher’s data suggest that ambulances, firetrucks and government aid aren’t the principal ways most people survive during and recover after a disaster. Instead, it’s the personal ties between members of a community that really matter.”

Reader Comments Welcome. Share news stories you have seen here…please be sure to attribute them. Comments with violations of Fair Use guidelines may be edited.