Political Grapevine: How 'bout Them Apples?

Tech giant has greater cash reserve than U.S. government


And now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

How 'bout Them Apples?

Washington might want to consider getting a loan from Apple as Congress and the White House discuss a debt ceiling compromise. It seems the tech giant has more cash on hand than Uncle Sam.

Apple's latest earnings report from June shows the company had $76 billion in cash and marketable securities. Compare that to Wednesday's daily Treasury statement. It said the government's total operating balance --- a volatile number that is always changing -- was almost $74 billion. A hefty sum, but still $2 billion less than Apple.

And Thursday's balance was down to $53 billion.

Hot Air?

NASA satellite data from the last decade appears to be blowing a hole in global warming. It shows the Earth's atmosphere is allowing far more heat to be released into space than computer models predicted. That's from a new study by a University of Alabama at Huntsville research scientist.

An environmental policy expert with the conservative Heartland Institute says of the findings -- quote -- "when objective NASA satellite data reported in a peer-reviewed scientific journal show a huge discrepancy between alarmist climate models and real-world facts, climate scientists, the media and our elected officials would be wise to take notice."

Five-Star Accommodations

The man who has confessed to carrying out the deadly attacks in Norway could end up in a swanky prison that looks more like a plush hotel.

Foreign Policy reports the country's second largest -- and most secure facility -- was created to avoid an institutional feel.

Halden Prison is spread over 75 acres and features wooded jogging trails, private rooms have in-suite baths, large windows, mini-refrigerators and flat-screen televisions.

The prison boasts a large state-of-the-art gym with a climbing wall and personal trainers. There is even a professional recording studio, since inmates can form their own bands.