Tidbits on May 9, 2005
Bob Jensen at Trinity University 

Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 
Archives of Tidbits: Tidbits Directory --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm

Click here to search Bob Jensen's web site if you have key words to enter --- Search Site.
For example if you want to know what Jensen documents have the term "Enron" enter the phrase Jensen AND Enron. Another search engine that covers Trinity and other universities is at http://www.searchedu.com/.

Bob Jensen's home page is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/

Security threats and hoaxes --- http://www.trinity.edu/its/virus/


Music: 
Hope Has Place
(I love this one) --- http://www.jessiesweb.com/pity.htm

Train of Life with Willie Nelson and Patsy Cline (I like this one even better) --- http://mywebpages.comcast.net/singingman7/TOL.htm

All the original Carpenters (sniff, sniff We've Only Just Begun) --- http://www.mymusicattic.org/Page19.html
Other great originals and some midis --- http://www.mymusicattic.org/

Gathering of Nations (Native American) Music --- http://www.angelfire.com/al2/gasaguali/GCR.htm

Mr. & Mrs Doo Wop Oldies (original recordings) --- http://www.doo-wop.org/doowop_001.htm
Click on Cafe, Drive-In, Sock Hop, etc.  (especially Cruisin and Memorabilia)

Malt Shop Sites --- http://www.centex.net/~elliott/maltshop.html


Thank you for the sacrifices:  This price of freedom is written in blood
FROM a balcony in Whitehall on May 8, 1945, Winston Churchill addressed the crowd which filled the street from end to end. "This is your victory," he cried. "Everyone, man or woman, has done their best … Neither the long years, nor the dangers, nor the fierce attacks of the enemy have in any way weakened the independent resolve of the British nation. God bless you all." Some in the crowd shouted back: "No, this is your victory." At Trafalgar Square and at Piccadilly Circus, the crowd was dancing and singing. American soldiers were exulting with British and Commonwealth servicemen, and the ordinary people of London, to celebrate what five years earlier had seemed an unattainable outcome. Then, with the Germans bursting into France and driving all before them into rout, Churchill had stated his aim to the House of Commons as: "Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be." The road had been harder than he had feared; 50 million people had died, much of Europe had been destroyed, millions had been driven from their homes and were wandering Europe, displaced and starving. The liberators were making terrible discoveries as they penetrated the frontiers of Germany to find camps full of sick and emaciated people. Many were dying at the moment they found freedom, the consequence of the Nazis' terrible policy of racial purification. In some places the last shots of World War II were still being fired and soldiers were dying in battle. In Prague, German defenders were battling against the advancing Russians but also against the Russian turncoats of the "Vlasov Army" who, hoping to save their skins, had turned back in the moment of defeat to fight for Russia again.
"VE: very emotional," Sydney Morning Herald, May 7, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/05/06/1115092690852.html

The Russians made huge sacrifices and have some different memories of World War II --- http://www.economist.com/world/europe/displayStory.cfm?story_id=3941474


Sharing Professor of the Week
Professor Matt Stroud from Trinity University --- http://www.trinity.edu/mstroud/ 

Matt Stroud is in our Department of Modern Languages and Literatures ---
http://www.trinity.edu/departments/modern%5Flanguages/

Matt's Spanish Grammar site is one of the most frequently sought after Web sites on campus in terms of the number of hits per day --- http://www.trinity.edu/mstroud/grammar/

These interactive Spanish grammar exercises were created using JavaScript and work best using Microsoft Internet Explorer 3 and Netscape 3 or higher. Some JavaScript programs created on PC's (as these were) may not work correctly on Macintosh machines, especially those using early versions of the browser.

In addition, these exercises require the use of accents. For information on using the built-in accents via the US-International keyboard in Windows 95 and 98, see the following page: http://www.trinity.edu/mstroud/spanish/accents.html 

The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures also has some great language resource site links at http://www.trinity.edu/departments/modern_languages/resources.htm


I don't believe in the self. I don't think that there is such a thing. I think that there are selves if you want to call them that. There are all sorts of interests and antipathies within and they all have their own histories and they congregate, but there is no unity. There is always the effort to say there is a unity that goes under the name Bill Maidment. That often seems to be a manipulation and exploitation of you, and you want to say, 'Look! I'm not coherent, everything does not hang together, and I'm glad!
W.M. (Bill) Maidment, University teacher, 1924-2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/05/06/1115092687979.html


Yahoo Stokes Search Engine Rivalry By Propelling Video Search
Yahoo Inc., which is racing against Google in offering better video-search capabilities, brought its service out of beta on Thursday
(May 5) and said it has added searchable content from CBS News, MTV and other media channels. Yahoo, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., first launched the service in December 2004, about a month before Google, Mountain View, Calif., debuted its TV video search service, which is still in beta. A major difference between the two services is that Yahoo offers video clips. The Google Video service, on the other hand, returns still photos and a text excerpt at the point where the search phrase was spoken. Transcripts are also available. Yahoo's video-clip offering reflects how the news and entertainment portal has done a better job at negotiating deals with content providers, particularly major media and movie companies, Charlene Li, analyst for Forrester Research, said. This is important because the more content a search engine can peruse, the more consumers it will attract.
Antone Gonsalves, "Yahoo Stokes Search Engine Rivalry By Propelling Video Search," InternetWeek, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.internetweek.com/allStories/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=162600311 
Jensen Comment:  Yahoo's video search site is at http://video.search.yahoo.com/
Bob Jensen's threads on video searching are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm#VideoSearch


Just in from WebMD
New Findings Could Help Point the Way (a blood test)  to Autism Diagnosis in Newborns --- http://my.webmd.com/content/Article/105/107860.htm?z=1727_00000_5024_hv_03


How to lie with statistics:  What states have the heaviest and lightest tax burdens in the nation?
Residents of Hawaii, Wyoming and Connecticut shoulder the heaviest state tax burdens in the nation. The least state taxes per person are paid by those living in Texas, South Dakota or Colorado, U.S. Census figures for 2004 show. Hawaii topped the list with taxes averaging $3,048 per person, more than double the per-capita rate in last-place Texas, which collected $1,367 for every man, woman and child . . . Because the Census numbers don't include tax levies by local governments, which often pick up certain state services, economists say a better measure of tax burdens nationwide is a snapshot of both state and local tax collections. The main reason Hawaii ranked No. 1 in the Census report is that public school education, covered largely by local government in other states, is strictly a state service.
Kathleen Murphy, "Is your state tax-friendly?" Stateline, May 7, 2005 ---
http://www.stateline.org/live/ViewPage.action?siteNodeId=136&languageId=1&contentId=28297
Jensen Comment:  There are all sorts of problems with this type of data.  As noted above, Texas looks low but Texas has enormous property taxes that are left out of the data reported above.  I'm led to wonder why New Hampshire and Nevada are not low on the list since neither state has a state income tax.  How in the world could Delaware not be at the bottom? Mysterious factors are at work.  Texas and Nevada have other sources of revenue other than taxation of residents such as taxation of casinos in Nevada and state ownership of all the liquor stores in New Hampshire.  In other words, the individual resident may be better off (from the standpoint of taxation) in Nevada or New Hampshire rather than in Texas or Colorado where sales taxes and local property taxes take a bigger bite from individuals.  The problem with New Hampshire is the property tax burden, but this varies greatly by towns within the state, especially since properties are only assessed every ten years with varying years of when the reassessment takes place.  I found the property taxes to be much less in NH than in Texas where property is revalued annually.  It sure felt nice when I bought my first car in New Hampshire and did not have to pay a sales tax.  But it did not feel nice to have to pay huge "transfer tax" when I bought a retirement home in New Hampshire.  Purportedly there is no sales tax in NH, but many folks like me belatedly discover that a real estate "transfer tax" is really a sales tax by another name.  The burden falls roughly half upon the property buyer and half on the property seller.

And now the rest of the story from MSN Central --- http://moneycentral.msn.com/articles/retire/basics/9838.asp
Texas, South Dakota, and Colorado are not at the bottom when property taxes are added to the data.  They are replaced by Delaware, Arkansas, and Kentucky.  And Hawaii, Wyoming and Connecticut are no longer the most taxing states.  They are replaced by the very taxing states of Wisconsin, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Vermont.

Kiplinger's magazine has developed a retiree's tax map to illustrate the total tax burden -- income taxes, property taxes and sales taxes -- for a typical retired couple in each of the 50 states and Washington, D.C. We discovered that when you look at the big picture, it might be cheaper to stay put in New York or Illinois than to move to one of the no-tax "havens." For retirees who are really retired -- that is, who haven't taken on jobs in retirement -- income taxes are often the least of their worries.

A recent advertisement for retirement homes in Pennsylvania included the tantalizing enticement that retirement income is not taxed in the Keystone State. That's true. Pennsylvania, which has a broad-based state income tax, is one of the most generous states in the country when it comes to the tax treatment of retirement income. Social Security benefits, public and private pensions as well as IRA distributions are all exempt from state income tax. But don't pack your bags just yet. When we tabulated the total state and local tax burden for retirees in all 50 state capitals and Washington, D.C., Harrisburg, Pa., proved to be the most taxing city for retirees.

Welcome to the real world, where property taxes can make homeownership the biggest burden of all in your golden years. Add to that sales tax, which you pay as you go about your daily errands, and you'll start thinking about the tax bogeyman in a whole new light.

In our example, property taxes of more than $6,500 on a median-priced home in Harrisburg (the highest property-tax bill in our survey) pushed Pennsylvania to the bottom of the list of tax-friendly places. And that's despite a zero income tax bill because all of the couple's retirement income is exempt from Pennsylvania's taxes and their remaining $5,000 of interest and dividend income falls below tax thresholds.

You might expect that Pennsylvania, second only to Florida in its percentage of residents 65 and older, would cut seniors some slack. While it does offer a property-tax rebate of up to $500 to some older homeowners, our hypothetical couple's $60,000 income was too high to qualify.

The retirement tax bite, state by state

 
City State Income tax Property tax Home price Sales tax Total
Dover DE $0 $543 $133,010 $0 $543
Juneau AK* $0 $1,032 $240,000 $0 $1,032
Frankfort KY $0 $274 $163,160 $840 $1,114
Columbia SC $0 $518 $127,730 $1,000 $1,518
Albany NY $0 $912 $120,490 $1,120 $2,032
Lansing MI $0 $1,312 $116,900 $840 $2,152
Jackson MS $423 $362 $113,410 $1,400 $2,185
Cheyenne WY* $0 $1,007 $141,680 $1,200 $2,207
Carson City NV* $0 $1,346 $165,620 $980 $2,326
Denver CO $248 $1,141 $212,240 $1,008 $2,397
Atlanta GA $66 $1,388 $162,000 $980 $2,434
Baton Rouge LA $225 $600 $129,800 $1,680 $2,505
Boise ID $399 $1,424 $145,950 $1,000 $2,823
Richmond VA $26 $1,964 $139,270 $870 $2,860
Springfield IL $0 $1,761 $86,680 $1,105 $2,866
Sacramento CA $148 $1,669 $165,640 $1,085 $2,902
Phoenix AZ $479 $1,309 $141,670 $1,134 $2,922
Salem OR $777 $2,160 $139,330 $0 $2,937
Indianapolis IN $1,013 $1,236 $117,690 $700 $2,949
Honolulu HI $1,274 $939 $357,310 $800 $3,013
Montgomery AL $948 $323 $125,850 $1,800 $3,071
Salt Lake City UT $786 $1,190 $150,340 $1,320 $3,296
Nashville TN $0 $1,666 $145,510 $1,650 $3,316
Raleigh NC $455 $1,845 $194,380 $1,030 $3,330
Columbus OH $243 $2,300 $136,010 $805 $3,348
Oklahoma City OK $817 $900 $90,940 $1,675 $3,392
Tallahassee FL** $160 $2,284 $131,680 $980 $3,424
Olympia WA* $0 $2,322 $156,280 $1,120 $3,442
Austin TX $0 $2,332 $152,000 $1,155 $3,487
Boston MA $872 $1,991 $260,850 $700 $3,563
Des Moines IA $461 $2,324 $123,020 $840 $3,625
Hartford CT $234 $2,561 $125,330 $840 $3,635
Pierre SD $0 $2,565 $131,750 $1,080 $3,645
Helena MT $2,339 $1,392 $145,880 $0 $3,731
Jefferson City MO $589 $2,263 $140,860 $1,065 $3,917
Washington DC $2,119 $1,036 $245,740 $805 $3,960
St. Paul MN $1,383 $1,608 $139,320 $980 $3,971
Topeka KS $1,114 $1,506 $91,930 $1,360 $3,980
Charleston WV $1,661 $1,192 $104,240 $1,200 $4,053
Santa Fe NM $897 $1,946 $329,610 $1,288 $4,131
Lincoln NB $994 $2,345 $115,180 $910 $4,249
Bismarck ND $635 $3,194 $144,570 $840 $4,669
Providence RI $1,156 $2,831 $134,680 $980 $4,967
Augusta ME $813 $3,604 $153,490 $700 $5,117
Little Rock AR $2,241 $1,620 $117,370 $1,325 $5,186
Concord NH $0 $5,279 $193,090 $0 $5,279
Annapolis MD $1,238 $3,483 $275,560 $1,000 $5,395
Montpelier VT $1,057 $4,065 $124,320 $700 $5,822
Madison WI $1,320 $3,926 $159,690 $770 $6,016
Trenton NJ $87 $5,788 $148,800 $840 $6,715
Harrisburg PA $0 $6,551 $112,330 $840 $7,391
State has no income tax. **Florida has no income tax. The $160 figure includes an intangibles tax.

Breaks for retirees
It is not so much what a state taxes but what it spares from taxation that makes or breaks a total tax bill for most retirees. For example, to prevent elderly homeowners from being forced out of their homes by rising property taxes, states often provide relief to seniors in the form of a homestead exemption, a freeze on the property's value or a deferral of property taxes, says E. Thomas Wetzel, president of the Retirement Living Information Center. (See link to its Web site under "Related Web Sites" at left.) The majority of these programs are targeted to low-income households. Still, in Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Illinois, Mississippi, New York, Texas and Washington, D.C., a couple with $60,000 in income qualifies for such a property-tax break designed specifically for seniors.

In most cities, the local property tax is determined by multiplying the assessed value of a home by a property-tax rate. But assessments in the cities we surveyed ranged from a low of 4% of market value in Columbia, S.C., to 100% in several cities. So if you're thinking about relocating, don't forget to check out the property taxes. In some cases, redirecting your home search down the street or across county lines could save you a bundle.

 

Jensen Comment:  Much depends upon income level when you are choosing a state to live in.  The above data are based upon relatively low retirement incomes and median-priced homes.  Whatever your property taxes, you are going to get clobbered harder when there is a state income tax if you have a relatively high retirement income.  I think the state income tax, possibly coupled with estate taxation, is one of the main reasons higher income retirees (not me) choose to move to states without income taxes when they retire.  However, many other factors enter into such decisions such as climate, scenery, lower population density, health care facilities, and where the children and grandchildren are located.


Fiscal disaster pending in Vermont:  They are asking Vermonters to pay more taxes, but get less health care"
From 1995 until late 2004, health care "reform" in Vermont consisted of Gov. Dean's constant expansion of Medicaid to higher income workers, known as the Vermont Health Access Plan. Since the plan's costs rose much faster than the revenues assigned to pay for it, Gov. Dean financed the expansion by progressively underpaying doctors, dentists, hospitals and nursing homes. His successor, moderate Republican Jim Douglas, ruefully announced in his 2005 inaugural address that the state was headed for a $270 million Medicaid shortfall by 2007. But the new, exceptionally left-wing legislature elected with him was eager to implement their platform pledge of a single-payer health system. House Democrats, with a working majority of 89-60, elected the very liberal Rep. Gaye Symington as speaker. Rep. John Tracy, chairman of a new committee on health care reform, drove his committee hard to come up with a plan. The eventual bill declared that Vermont had no "clearly defined, integrated health care 'system,'" but instead, a patchwork of programs, inequitably financed, leaving some 60,000 Vermonters without access to care. The proposed solution was universal coverage for "essential" services as defined by legislative committee. The state's 12 hospitals would be subjected to a binding "global budget." Doctors and other providers would be compensated on a "reasonable" and "sufficient" basis, in light of bureaucratically established "cost containment targets." Private health insurance for essential services would be abolished. The new system would be paid for by $2 billion in new payroll and income taxes. The plan overlooked a few sticky considerations. Many Vermonters go to hospitals in neighboring states: How could those hospitals be forced to accept Vermont's government payment rates? What about sick people migrating into Vermont to gain the benefit of the universal care? How could the state have "single- payer" efficiency when Medicare, Medicaid, and Veterans Administration care existed side by side with "Green Mountain Health"? The final version of the bill, which appeared on the House floor on April 20, didn't settle these questions. Nonetheless, the House passed the single-payer plan on a vote of 86-58. Gov. Douglas attacked the measure as potentially "devastating to our economy." "They are asking Vermonters to pay more taxes, but get less health care," he said.
John McClaughry, "Canada South," The Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2005; Page A15 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111526276254825513,00.html?mod=opinion%5Fmain%5Ffeatured%5Fstories%5Fhs


Google Releases Web Accelerator:  It's free if you want to give it a try but there are some cautions
Google Inc. has launched in beta software that the company says will speed up the time it takes to search the Internet and to load web content. Web Accelerator, which is available at no charge, runs alongside a browser and directs all searches and page requests through Google's servers. The software supports Microsoft Corp.'s Internet Explorer and the Mozilla Foundation's Firefox browsers. In improving performance on the web, the application makes use of a cache, or data store, on the local computer, as well as caches on Google's servers, Marissa Mayer, director of consumer web products for Google, said Thursday. The software is only available for broadband users.
Antone Gonsalves, "Google Releases Web Accelerator," InternetWeek, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.internetweek.com/breakingNews/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=162600305

Also see http://www.informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=162800052&tid=5979

Needs more work?  In fairness, the Web Accelerator is still in Beta form
Google’s web accelerator seems like a good thing for the public web, but it can wreak havok on web-apps and other things with admin-links built into the UI. How’s that? The accelerator scours a page and prefetches the content behind each link. This gives the illusion of pages loading faster (since they’ve already been pre-loaded behind the scenes). Here’s the problem: Google is essentially clicking every link on the page — including links like “delete this” or “cancel that.” And to make matters worse, Google ignores the Javascript confirmations. So, if you have a “Are you sure you want to delete this?” Javascript confirmation behind that “delete” link, Google ignores it and performs the action anyway. We discovered this yesterday when a few people were reporting that their Backpack pages were “disappearing.” We were stumped until we dug a little deeper and discovered this Web Accelerator behavior. Once we figured this out we added some code to prevent Google from prefetching the pages and clicking the links, but it was quite disconcerting.

"Google Web Accelerator Needs More Work," Addict3d, May 6, 2005 ---
http://addict3d.org/index.php?page=viewarticle&type=news&ID=6651

Google Web Accelerator Draws Concern
Google's release of its Web Accelerator has caused growing concern among some developers that it may actually do more harm than good. In order to speed up Web surfing, the tool automatically downloads URLs linked on page a user is visiting, which means it might load administrative links for editing or deleting content. The issue was discovered when users of Backpack, a service designed to organize information for individuals and small businesses in a wiki-like format, complained that their Web pages were suddenly disappearing.

Ed Oswald and Nate Mook, "Google Web Accelerator Draws Concern," BetaNews, May 6, 2005 --- http://www.betanews.com/article/Google_Web_Accelerator_Draws_Concern/1115405686

How to block Google’s Web accelerator
SINCE
Google announced its super soaraway web accelerator, a number of web sites are offering ways to disable it. The freshly fledged Google "service" stores every web page that you happened to look at so that you can retrieve it quickly. The only problem is that it is serving the wrong pages to people. According to the searchenginejournal.com, already someone using the service has reported that they were logged into a forum under some other username. Other sites are concerned that every cough and spit of their company’s web activity could end up posted somewhere else on the web. They may have lax security. The searchenginejournal.com is offering some free code to companies who want to block Google’s Web Accelerator traffic from accessing their web site
here. It works by blocking the IP addresses.
Nick Farrell, "How to block Google’s "web accelerator:  You have to really," The Inquirer, May 6, 2005 --- http://67.19.9.2/?article=23051

"In Defense of Cheating," by Donald A. Norman, UBIQUITY, vol. 6, issue 11, April 5-12, 2005 --- http://www.acm.org/ubiquity/views/v6i11_norman.html
(Dr. Norman is a well-known computer scientist and author who often challenges common thinking --- http://www.jnd.org/ )
Jensen Comment:  Norman tries to defend cheating "with attribution." It seems like if there is attribution there is no cheating or else, if that form of "cheating" isn't allowed, giving attribution simply yells out that you're cheating anyway.  Dr. Norman is a great scholar, but I don't go along with him in this article.
Bob Jensen's threads on cheating are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/plagiarism.htm 


Tasty diet foods --- http://my.webmd.com/content/article/102/106859.htm?z=1727_00000_5024_hv_01


Politics is always darkest before the yawn.
Michael Duffy in the Sydney Morning Herald on May 7, 2005


Job market good news
The Labor Department said the economy added 274,000 jobs outside the farming sector in April, the fifth-largest gain in five years. Wall Street had expected an increase of 174,000 jobs, according to a survey by Bloomberg News
Jennifer Bayot, "U.S. Economy Added an Unexpected 274,000 Jobs in April," The New York Times, May 6, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/06/business/06cnd-econ.html


The confusing state of nanotechnology to date
No doubt, that's where nanotechnology research is right now. Scientists are learning how to unlock extraordinary capabilities in commonplace materials by manipulating them on a molecular -- sometimes atomic -- scale. Nanotech has the potential to create everything from faster and smaller computer chips, to smart medicines, to straight-flying golf balls, and even car windshields that repel water without wipers (see BW Cover Story, 2/14/05, "The Business of Nanotech"). But in a field with literally thousands of possible applications, a huge gap often exists between what's theoretically possible in a lab and what can be reliably produced for commercial use. For nano-entrepreneurs and scientists, that gap makes the field especially tantalizing. And it makes it all the more frustrating when a competitor's press release claims he has jumped that gap with ease. So how can you tell who's the real deal? The term "nano," for the most part, means little more than a size in the range of 1 to 100 nanometers. The width of a human hair, for example, is about 80,000 nanometers. The technology side of the equation comes into play with research into the surprising behavior of various materials when manipulated on that tiny level.
"Slugfest in the Nanotech Trenches," Business Week, February 23, 2005 --- http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/feb2005/tc20050223_5725_tc204.htm

Also see http://www.technologyreview.com/articles/05/05/issue/ftl_nano.asp?trk=nl

Bob Jensen's threads on ubiquitous computing are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ubiquit.htm


The confusing state of baseball today:  Its business and its history
My name is Maury Brown, and along with Gary Gillette, the Co-Chairs of The Business of Baseball committee of SABR (Society for American Baseball Research), we want to welcome you to this research resource. The goal of this site is to provide research tools for those wishing to learn more about the business end of professional baseball. The site is broken into several areas, including Data (databases and spreadsheets), Relocation and/or Expansion (documentation by jurisdictions exploring relocation and/or expansion), Documents (various documents, both current and historical, dealing with issues within the business of baseball), Bios (biographies from members of SABR on persons within the business of baseball), Reading Material (suggested reading material from the Business of Baseball Committee of SABR), Interviews (interviews with individuals that have had, or still do impact the business of baseball), History, which chronicles key moments in baseball history as it relates to the business side of things. And, the BizBall Forums, a location where business of baseball articles are Blogged, and where discussion and commentary occur (registration required).
The Business of Baseball --- http://www.businessofbaseball.com/


The confusing state of innovation versus privacy:  The case of Google
Google just can't seem to make a move these days without raising a red flag from privacy advocates. Where the search giant sees innovation, others see a threat to consumers. The latest privacy issue is with Google's Web Accelerator, the subject of today's Leading Off. The software, which is installed on the desktop, boosts web search and browsing through the use of data stores on the local computer and on Google's servers. Storing data on a person's web activities is always a concern among privacy advocates, who point out that the government, law enforcement and lawyers can subpoena the information. Why put yourself at risk for a service that you can easily live with out, advocates ask. A similar complaint followed Google's release in April of the My Search History tool, which tracked web searches, so a person could access them later. Google, of course, argues that the value of the services far outweigh their risks. For its part, Google says it doesn't track individuals on the web, and wouldn't share data with anyone outside the company. I have a feeling Google is going to run into these issues for a long time. As a search company intensely focused on technology, Google is going to need to gather and store data in order to innovate. As a result, people will always wonder how others can misuse all that information.
Antone Gonsalves, Editor, InternetWeek, "The Google Dilemma," InternetWeek Newsletter, May 6, 2005


The Effect of The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 on Market Liquidity
Investors and market makers rely heavily on the trustworthiness and accuracy of corporate information to provide liquidity and vibrancy to the capital markets. This paper analyzes market liquidity measures before and after passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (the Act), aimed at reinforcing more accountability for public companies and rebuilding investor confidence in public financial information. We detect wider spreads, lower depths, and higher adverse selection component of spreads in the period surrounding the reported financial scandals, indicating that liquidity measures were deteriorated as a result of those scandals. We find liquidity measures were improved following the passage of the Act. Our cross sectional analysis indicates that these changes in liquidity were pervasive and affected all types of firms, particularly large firms. These findings suggest that the reported financial scandals had negative impact on liquidity measures, which led to a decline in investor confidence and that the Act improved liquidity measures.
Pankaj Jaine et al, "The Effect of The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 on Market Liquidity," Unpublished Working Paper, March 2004  --- http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=488142

As noted by Jim Mahar on May 6, this earlier study detecting an impact of regulation on performance differs from the following April 23, 2005 study that finds no such difference.  Such is life in capital market research.

The current research examines whether financial services companies (such as Merrill Lynch, Charles Schwab et al.) benefit from the rules designed and enforced by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). I find that SEC rules significantly reduce volatility of the financial companies, but not their level of returns. Thus, SEC rules appear to be a mandatory hedging mechanism designed to couch industrial shocks and stabilize financial industry ("tyranny of the status quo" per Becker (1983, p. 382)). Furthermore, SEC rules do not appear to have any effect on other market participants commonly thought to benefit from SEC rules. The persistence of this phenomenon, contradicts existing regulation theories (i.e., market efficiency, Stigler (1971), Peltzman (1976), and Becker (1983) theories), in which at least one market party is to benefit from governmental intervention.
Irene E. Aldridge, "Do Financial Companies Benefit from SEC Regulation?" Unpublished Working Paper --- http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=705461


Mind Wide Open: Your Brain and the Neuroscience of Everyday Life
Steven Johnson, the author of last year's "Mind Wide Open: Your Brain and the Neuroscience of Everyday Life," is now determined to topple the reigning clichés about pop culture. Not to worry about all those sarcastic sitcoms, humiliating reality shows and murderous video games, he says in "Everything Bad Is Good for You" (Riverhead Books, 238 pages, $23.95). Throughout the vast wasteland a kind of education is taking place: Electronic culture and movies are teaching us how to grapple with an ever more complex society. Following Marshall 0.McLean, Mr. Johnson argues that most of us pay too much attention to the content of pop culture and not enough to how the culture alters our minds and frames what we learn. Video games may be obsessed with shooting aliens and rescuing princesses, but they build cognitive muscle by dangling rewards and forcing decision-making. They develop "visual intelligence" and "coping skills."
John Leo, "The New Life of the Mind," The Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2005; Page D8 ---
http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111524562441625066,00.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal


Faculty Towers: The Academic Novel and Its Discontents
Elaine Showalter opens her new book on the academic novel by noting the theory that the novel generally took off because people wanted to read about people like themselves. So it’s not surprising that Showalter, an emeritus professor of English at Princeton University, would consider the academic novel her favorite literary genre. In Faculty Towers: The Academic Novel and Its Discontents, published this spring by the University of Pennsylvania Press, she reviews the genre, which first appeared in significant form in the 50s and has thrived ever since. Showalter answered some questions from Inside Higher Ed about her new book and the state of academic fiction . . . A novel often cited as a long-time favorite by my women friends in academia is Gail Godwin’s The Odd Woman; the cleverest and most recognizable recent academic satire is The Lecturer’s Tale, by James Hynes. I also think that Joanne Dobson’s “Karen Pelletier” mysteries give an excellent sense of the academic life.
Scott Jaschik, " ‘Faculty Towers’," Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/05/05/novel


Mind narrow closed:  This professor has to be an embarrassment to Baylor University
Marc H. Ellis is university professor and director of the Center for American and Jewish Studies at Baylor University, a Baptist University in Waco, Texas, not ordinarily on anyone's radar map as a particularly notable institution when it comes to the field of Jewish scholarship. Indeed, theologically Waco is best known for serving as home of the Branch Davidians and the abortive FBI raid on its headquarters. Thus fringe "theologians" seem to feel right at home there. Maybe it has something to do with being home to singer Willie Nelson. Unlike Norman Finkelstein, who has never managed to hold any sort of real academic position for very long and is these days an untenured assistant professor at DePaul University, Ellis pretends to have serious academic credentials. He claims to have written actual scholarly books, unlike Finkelstein's low-brow obscene Jew-baiting propaganda. But, in fact, there are surprisingly few differences between Finkelstein's anti-Semitism and Ellis' "scholarly work". Indeed, the two have a long history of collaboration with one another. They appear at one another's conferences and on one another's web sites, endorsing one another with true brotherly comradeship . . . The first hint one has of the real orientation of this atrocious little book, which purports to be a theological re-examination of what it means to be Jewish after the Holocaust, is that the only people Ellis and his publisher could find to endorse the book on the jacket are members of the Terrorism Lobby: Edward Said, Noam Chomsky, and their ilk. Not a single Jewish theologian. Pro-terror and Islamist web sites have given the book rave reviews. So has the PLO's web site. The leftist extremist magazine "The Nation" recently praised the book's call for Israel to be eliminated, although expressing dislike for the fact that Ellis thinks religion still has some positive roles to play in the 21st century. Need we say more? This poorly-written book, the latest in the series of sophomoric Israel-bashing propaganda tirades published by Pluto Press - by the way, is little more than a vicious anti-Israel broadside. The only thing of value that Ellis thinks Jews should derive from their experiences during the Holocaust is an unambiguous denunciation of Israel and total support for the demands and agenda of the Palestinian terrorists. He denounces all Jewish denominations and all rabbinic institutions for their failures to endorse Palestinian violence unreservedly. He is as hostile to the Jews of America as he is to Israel: "We as Jews come after the Holocaust, but we also come after the illusory promises of Israel and America. And we cannot find our way alone, only with others who realize that the promises they have been handed are also illusory."
Steven Plaut, "Baylor University’s Anti-Jewish Liberation 'Theologian'," FrontPageMag.com, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=17755

No comment other than Grrrrr!
Six years after Kansas ignited a national debate over the teaching of evolution, the state is poised to push through new science standards this summer requiring that Darwin's theory be challenged in the classroom.
Jodi Wilgoren, "In Kansas, Darwinism Goes on Trial Once More E-Mail This Printer-Friendly Single-Page," The New York Times, May 6, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/06/education/06evolution.html


Jews Most Distinctive Group in America?
"New AJC Report Says Jews Most Distinctive Group in America," American Jewish Committee, March 4, 005 --- http://www.ajc.org/InTheMedia/PressReleases.asp?did=1594


On the religious front, Jews are the least likely of any religious group in America to pray on a daily basis, at 26 percent, compared with 56 percent of non-Jews; they are also the least likely to be sure that God exists. Still, the same percentage of Jews and non-Jews say they have a strong religious attachment.

Among other findings, the reports states that:

 

  • Jews are the most pro-civil liberties of all ethnic groups on most issues;
  • Jews strongly support separation of church and state, and are the group most in favor of the Supreme Court ruling against school prayer;
  • Jews are more supportive of racial equality, integration, and intergroup tolerance than other groups are.

 


The American Dream is the Arab American Dream
In a compact stone and glass building here, the creators of the Arab American National Museum seek to set the record straight. "If somebody else tells your story, it's not your story," Ismael Ahmed told me, "and in this case, we even think the story has been told with malice" by others. Mr. Ahmed heads the nonprofit social-services organization in Dearborn that built the museum, which opens today. By malice, he meant a desire to portray Arab-Americans as out of the mainstream, hostile toward the U.S. and possibly sympathetic toward terrorism. The museum uses personal artifacts, skillfully distilled reminiscences and absorbing interactive displays to recount the tale of Arab immigration and accomplishment since the late 1800s. There is much to boast about, but just below the surface of the museum's colorful exhibits -- and sometimes emerging into full view -- is a sense that corrections are needed; wrongs must be righted. It makes for a lively museum experience.
Paul M. Barrett, "Arab-Americans Tell Their Own Story," The Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2005; Page D8 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111524404860525041,00.html?mod=opinion&ojcontent=otep


The American Dream becomes a nightmare for GM and Ford
In a double blow to the U.S. auto industry, Standard & Poor's Corp. yesterday cut its credit ratings on General Motors Corp. and Ford Motor Co., pushing to "junk" status two icons of American business. S&P, which had warned in recent weeks that both companies could be downgraded, said it reduced the ratings because of increasing doubts about the strategies the companies are following, in particular their heavy reliance on big sport-utility vehicles, sales of which are now falling.
Lee Hawkins, Jr., "S&P Cuts Rating On GM and Ford To Junk Status:  Double Blow Underlines Big Problems in Detroit, Adds to Bond-Market Jitters," The Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2005; Page A1 ---
http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111530407208325777,00.html?mod=todays_us_page_one

Also see the NYT version at http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/06/automobiles/06auto.html?


Air Force Sets New Inquiry at Academy
The Pentagon is sending investigators to the Air Force Academy to look into complaints that evangelical Christian faculty members, officers and cadets routinely proselytize and intimidate those on campus who do not hold the same religious beliefs. The inquiry follows accusations that these other cadets have long been subject to a climate of religious intolerance. To address the problem, the academy, in Colorado Springs, began requiring its faculty and students in March to attend 50-minute sensitivity training classes.
Laurie Goldstein, "Air Force Sets New Inquiry at Academy," The New York Times, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/05/education/05academy.html

Religious Tolerance or Lack Thereof at the Air Force Academy
According to recent news reports, the U.S. Air Force Academy, which is just now recovering from one series of scandals involving harassment (and worse) directed at female cadets and another involving underage drinking, now finds itself embroiled in yet another case of questionable behavior. In the last few years there have been some 55 complaints of religious bias at the Academy. Johnny Whitaker, an Academy spokesperson said that some of the complaints involved religious slurs, while others involved proselytizing in inappropriate places. He went on to say that "there have been cases of maliciousness, mean-spiritedness and attacking or baiting someone over religion." And, last year the Air Force Academy football coach, Fisher DeBerry, was called to task for promoting Christianity to his players with a locker room banner that included the lines "I am a Christian first and last.... I am a member of Team Jesus Christ." DeBerry removed the banner, but is considering continuing team prayers after football games next season -- but this time without reference to a specific religion.
Mark H. Shapiro, "Tolerance or Lack Thereof at the Air Force Academy," The Irascible Professor, April 22, 2005 --- http://irascibleprofessor.com/comments-04-22-05.htm

Note that the Princeton Review ranks the Air Force Academy Number 3
 in terms of Race/Class Interaction
http://www.princetonreview.com/college/research/rankings/rankingCategory.asp?categoryID=3

 

  Lots of Race/Class Interaction

1 McGill University
2 Austin College
3 United States Air Force Academy
4 St. John's College (MD)
5 Webb Institute
 

 


Wadud challenges patriarchal dominance over Islamic teaching and practice
March 18 was an eventful day for Muslims in the West. In New York, Amina Wadud, a professor of Islamic studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, became one of the few Muslim women to lead a Friday congregational prayer. Meanwhile, in Sydney, Sheik Faiz Mohamad made comments linking rape and women's dress that have become infamous over the past few weeks. The contrast could not be starker. Wadud's actions were a deliberately provocative challenge to perceived patriarchal dominance over Islamic teaching and practice. Through this act, organisers asserted women would reclaim their right to be spiritual equals and leaders. It was a response to an increasing feeling among Muslim women of exclusion from mosques and positions of influence in the Muslim community. It had echoes of Rosa Parkes, the black woman who set the American civil rights movement alight when she defiantly refused to move to the back of the bus, where blacks belonged, and was arrested for her trouble.
Waleed Aly"Islam faces big questions about its future in the West, as one day of controversy showed," Sydney Morning Herald, May 6, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/05/05/1115092623270.html


Microsoft reverses its stand on gay rights:  A message for the CEO Steve Ballmer to all of Microsoft's employees
Accordingly, Microsoft will continue to join other leading companies in supporting federal legislation that would prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation -- adding sexual orientation to the existing law that already covers race, sex, national origin, religion, age and disability. Given the importance of diversity to our business, it is appropriate for the company to endorse legislation that prohibits employment discrimination on all of these grounds. Obviously, the Washington State legislative session has concluded for this year, but if legislation similar to HB 1515 is introduced in future sessions, we will support it . . . I also want to be clear about some limits to this approach. Many other countries have different political traditions for public advocacy by corporations, and I’m not prepared to involve the company in debates outside the US in such circumstances. And, based on the principles I’ve just outlined, the company should not and will not take a position on most other public policy issues, either in the US or internationally. I respect that there will be different viewpoints. But as CEO, I am doing what I believe is right for our company as a whole.
"Text of Steve Ballmer E-Mail to U.S. Microsoft Employees Regarding Public Policy Engagement," Microsoft Press Release on May 6, 2005 --- http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/misc/05-06-05StevebPublicPolicy.asp


Who Owns Research at Brown University?
Brown University officials agreed Tuesday to clarify a proposed intellectual property
policy that some professors said would have infringed on their rights and made it impossible for them to consult with businesses.The clarifications largely satisfied professors, and the faculty overwhelmingly approved the revised proposal, which now goes to Brown’s board, which is expected to approve it. Administrators said the policy was never intended to be as restrictive as the critics feared — but that they were happy that everyone was now on board.
Scott Jaschik, "Who Owns Research at Brown?" Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/05/05/brown


Surprise! Surprise! FBI probing insurance industry
The Federal Bureau of Investigation said it is conducting a wide-ranging inquiry into the insurance industry and could extend the probe to banking and other financial sectors, in the wake of the accounting scandal at American International Group Inc. FBI investigators and insurance regulators from multiple states will meet in Manhattan today, according to people familiar with the matter. Insurance specialists are expected to brief the investigators on the nuances of the sorts of complex transactions that can be used to manipulate financial statements. FBI officials arranged the meeting through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners last week.
Anne Marie Soueo and Theo Francis, "AIG Investigation Sparks FBI Probe Of Insurance Firms," The Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2005; Page A3 ---
http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111523416486324807,00.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing


Dumb and Dumber Crooks
What's dumber than handing a bank teller a holdup note written on the back of your own utility bill?
Joe Wells tells us in the May 2005 edition of the Journal of Accountancy --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/may2005/wells.htm


Smarter and Meaner Crooks
Security experts say they started to see online-extortion attempts two or three years ago. Law-enforcement officials say that the number of cases involving online extortion is increasing, but statistics are hard to come by because perpetrators are often prosecuted under laws covering other offenses, such as money laundering. And, as with conventional blackmail, companies are reluctant to report cyber-extortion attempts, partly for fear of bad publicity. "A lot of companies decide that it is better to deal with it privately," says David Thomas, head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's computer-intrusion section. Even if they don't report attacks to the police, extortion victims often seek help from Internet-security companies. Prolexic Technologies Inc., a Florida security-technology company, says that about 85 of its customers have been targets of online blackmail attempts, up from 25 at the end of 2003, when Prolexic was founded. Victims typically are businesses that rely heavily on the Internet, such as online-payment processors, gambling Web sites, and foreign-exchange and other financial-services sites. Small and midsize businesses often are most vulnerable, because their networks typically aren't protected as well as those of large corporations.
Cassell Bryan-Low, "Tech-Savvy Blackmailers Hone A New Form of Extortion," The Wall Street Journal,  May 5, 2005; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111525378869925341,00.html?mod=todays_us_marketplace

How an online business fought back against Internet extortion --- http://wagblog.internetweek.com/archives/002789.html


Isn’t It Ironic?
There is the irony of Plato’s dialogues, where men who are very sure of their own competence try to explain things to Socrates (who says that he knows nothing, yet quickly, through simple questions, ties their arguments into the Athenian equivalent of pretzels). There is dramatic irony, in which action on stage means one thing for the characters and something very different for the audience. And let’s not even get started on where the German philosophers went with it — beyond noting that it turned into something like the essence of art, consciousness, and human existence.  I’m not saying that there is no connection at all between the Philosophical Fragments of Friedrich Schlegel and the camp value of listening to The Carpenters’ Greatest Hits. Actually, they go together pretty well, if you’re in the right mood. (As Schlegel put it: “For a man who has achieved a certain height and universality of cultivation, his inner being is an ongoing chain of the most enormous revolutions.” So you might start out feeling all ironic about Karen Carpenter, then end up overwhelmed by her voice.)
Scott McClemee, "Isn’t It Ironic?" Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2005/05/05/mclemee

Listen to Karen Carpenter  --- http://www.mymusicattic.org/Page19.html


American Historical Association warns:  Avoid ‘the Dustbin of History’
Master’s degree programs in history play a role far more influential than would be indicated by the number of students enrolled. Because those students go on to either earn Ph.D.’s, teach in community colleges, teach in high schools or work in “public history,” these programs have a broad impact on what millions of Americans will be taught about history. But a new report from the American Historical Association warns that many of these programs lack direction, fail to prepare students for the careers they are seeking, and can’t answer basic questions about their missions. In addition, the report notes that despite the wide range of career options available for master’s recipients, the number of M.A.’s awarded in history dropped 16 percent between 1996 and 2002 – a period in which total master’s degrees were on the rise.
Scott Jaschik, "Avoiding ‘the Dustbin of History’," Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/05/05/masters


George Mason University:  School of IT and Engineering seeking true national prominence and leadership
Each of the 300 technology professionals who attended the annual gala for George Mason University's School of Information Technology and Engineering Friday evening walked away with a compact disc of classical music containing a thinly veiled message from Lloyd Griffiths , dean of the department. "With the help of corporate sponsors and individuals like yourself, we'll move the School of IT and Engineering into a position of true national prominence and leadership," Griffiths says on the CD.
Ellen McCarthy, "GMU Looking To Raise Profile And $15 Million," Washington Post, March 5, 2005 --- http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/05/04/AR2005050402144.html?referrer=email


 

Not Nice Nice:  Medical rationing on the U.K.'s national health plan
A national health advisory body has proposed denying patients certain treatment on the grounds of their age, it confirmed today. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice), which provides guidance on public health issues, set out the controversial ideas in a new consultation paper.
"Denied treatment because they are too old," Daily Mail, May 5, 2005 --- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/healthmain.html?in_article_id=347438&in_page_id=1774


How much money do kids spend online on average?
"Playing spend-and-seek online," Chicago Tribune, May 3, 2005 ---
http://www.chicagotribune.com/technology/chi-0505030269may03,1,5727848.story?coll=chi-techtopheds-hed

Many kids shop on the Internet, or they check out stuff online that later they buy at a store. Here's how much money is involved on average in a year:

Online spending

AGES 8 TO 12: $51

AGES 13 TO 15: $424

Other spending first researched online

AGES 8 TO 12: $168

AGES 13 TO 15: $442


Technology trivia from the Washington Post on May 5, 2005

America Online plans to ditch its decade-old instant messaging platform. What's the next generation of its IM software called?

A. Larissa
B. Nereid
C. Proteus
D. Triton


Now she's really smoking
Michigan resident Julia Sidebottom inhaled sharply when she opened her mailbox earlier this year and was greeted with an unexpected and unwelcome bill from the state for $4,753.89 in unpaid cigarette and sales taxes. For several years, Sidebottom's boyfriend purchased cigarettes online at www.esmokes.com, one of 13 online cigarette retailers from which Michigan recently subpoenaed customer lists. She said the bill caught her completely off guard. "It never even crossed our minds," said Sidebottom, whose 57-year-old boyfriend suffers from Alzheimer's and has granted her power of attorney. "I search the Web all the time for the best deals on everything. Never in a million years did I expect the state to come back and say we own them money." Sidebottom is one of more than 1,500 Michigan residents who recently were mailed bills for the cigarette and sales taxes they had avoided by buying their smokes from online retailers. After 30 days, Sidebottom's letter informed her that a 100 percent penalty would be added to her existing debt.
Kathleen Hunter, "States hunt down online cigarette buyers," State Line, May 3, 2005 ---
http://www.stateline.org/live/ViewPage.action?siteNodeId=136&languageId=1&contentId=29157


This guy is a really bad shot
A man shot himself five times before driving from his Godfrey, Ill., home to a bridge -- a distance that took 10 minutes -- and jumped from a bridge. Sixty-seven-year-old Franklin Carver shot himself three times in his head and twice in his chest, but none of the shots was immediately fatal, police said.A motorist witnessed the jump and called 911 from a cell phone, but Carver drowned before emergency workers could reach him, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Tuesday. "This is probably the most unusual suicide case I've ever seen in my career," said Lt. David Hayes of the Alton Police Department. "It's a bizarre case; it really is."
"Man shoots himself, then jumps off bridge," Washington Times, May 3, 2005 ---
http://washingtontimes.com/upi-breaking/20050503-030050-6791r.htm


How to lie (at least a bit) with statistics as forwarded by Dick Haar
If you consider that there have been an average of 160,000 troops in Iraq during the last 22 months and the firearm death rate has been 60 per 100,000. The rate in DC is 80.6 per 100,000. That means that you are more likely to be shot and killed in our Nation's Capitol, which has some of the strictest gun control laws in the nation, than you are in Iraq.


Here are the 10 Most Read Articles on NYTimes.com from the past two weeks (as of 11 a.m. ET, May 6).

1) 'Today' Seeks Yesterday's Glory By ALESSANDRA STANLEY, Published: April 25, 2005 NBC executives seem to think that viewers have grown bored with "Today" and want more gimmicks and pizazz. Nothing could be further from the truth. Click here!

2) John Tierney: Laura Bush Talks Naughty Published: May 3, 2005 The coverage of Laura Bush's racy comic debut may change some minds, but for devout Bush-bashers, it's much easier to stay the course.  Click here!

3) Frank Rich: A High-Tech Lynching in Prime Time Published: April 24, 2005 "Justice Sunday," the judge-bashing rally being disseminated nationwide by cable, satellite and Internet, has a gay agenda.  Click here! 

4) Paul Krugman: The Oblivious Right Published: April 25, 2005 President Bush and other Republican leaders honestly think that we're living in the best of times. That's because everyone they talk to says so.  Click here!

5) At Wal-Mart, Choosing Sides Over $9.68 an Hour By STEVEN GREENHOUSE, Published: May 4, 2005 With most of Wal-Mart's workers earning less than $19,000 a year, several groups have teamed up to prod Wal-Mart into paying its employees higher wages. Click here!  

6) Maureen Dowd: All That Glisters Is Gold Published: May 4, 2005 The moral of the pretty duckling.  Click here!

7) The Mystery of Hollywood's Dead Republican By DAVID M. HALBFINGER and DENNIS McDOUGAL, Published: April 26, 2005 How did a life of adventure end in Carrie Fisher's bedroom? Click here!

8) Turbulence on Campus in 60's Hardened Views of Future Pope By RICHARD BERNSTEIN, DANIEL J. WAKIN and MARK LANDLER, Published: April 24, 2005 The protests of student radicals at Tubingen University shaped the man who now leads the Roman Catholic Church. Click here!

9) Bloodied Marines Sound Off About Want of Armor and Men By MICHAEL MOSS, Published: April 25, 2005 Marine leaders and infantrymen of a unit that sustained heavy losses say a lack of armor and manpower hampered their efforts. 
Click here!

10) Maureen Dowd: U.N.leash Woolly Bully Bolton Published: April 27, 2005 John Bolton, who tried to stretch the truth on foreign weapons programs, deserves to be rewarded as other Bush officials have been.  Click here!

 




Ole and Sven were out fishing in the boat when Ole felt a tug on his line. When he reeled in his catch he discovered it was only an old lamp. While Ole was rubbing it dry there was a sudden 'poof' and a genie appeared out of the lamp. "Thank for freeing me from the lamp" said the genie. To show my gratitude I will grant you one wish".

After thinking for a few minutes Ole finally told the genie that his wish is for all of the water in the lake to turn into beer. At Ole's request the genie raised his hands and 'poof', the entire lake turned into beer.

"Dat vas perty stupid!" said Sven

"Vy vas dat so stupid?" asked Ole

"Because," Sven replied, "now ve gonna hafta pee in da boat."




Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
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Archives of Tidbits: Tidbits Directory --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm

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Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob) http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen
Jesse H. Jones Distinguished Professor of Business Administration
Trinity University, San Antonio, TX 78212-7200
Voice: 210-999-7347 Fax: 210-999-8134  Email:  rjensen@trinity.edu