July 11, 2005 warning forwarded by Scott Bonacker [email@example.com]
Professor Jensen - Something for your tidbits?
Note - to restore the link, delete the carriage return/linefeed so that "columnItem" is immediately followed by "/0,294698"
Scott Bonacker, CPA
McCullough Officer & Co, LLC
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Spam Prevention Discussion List
> Sent: Monday, July 11, 2005 9:37 AM
> Subject: MEDIA: [infowarrior] -
> Phishing for the missing piece of the CardSystems puzzle]
> [ Yet another illustration that the relationships between various
> forms of 'net abuse can be complex. In this case, spam, phishing,
> data theft and identity theft all converge.
> I think this illustrates that even if we could wave our magic wand and
> make SMTP spam vanish forever...we'd be far, far from out of the
> woods. ---Rsk ]
> ----- Forwarded message from infowarrior.org -----
> > Date: Sun, 10 Jul 2005 22:07:56 -0400
> > Subject: [infowarrior] - Phishing for the missing piece of the
> > CardSystems puzzle
> > Phishing for the missing piece of the CardSystems puzzle
> > By Donald Smith
> > 07 Jul 2005 | SearchSecurity.com
> > A banking insider examines the ties between customized phishing
> > attacks this spring and the CardSystems breach announced
> soon after.
> > Don't miss his revelations on how they're linked and what
> the phishers
> > really needed.
> > Perhaps you heard about customized phishing scams when they began
> > circulating back in May, in which actual credit card data
> was used to
> > lure consumers into divulging even more secrets. But did you know
> > these scams could very well be the first externally visible
> result of
> > the CardSystems breach, before it was made public in June?
> > -/SNIP/-
> > About the author
> > Donald Smith is the IT audit manager for The Mechanics Bank of
> > Richmond, Calif. Smith's opinions are his own, and not those of The
> > Mechanics Bank.
> > You are a subscribed member of the infowarrior list. Visit
> > www.infowarrior.org for list information or to unsubscribe. This
> > message may be redistributed freely in its entirety. Any and all
> > copyrights appearing in list messages are maintained by
> their respective owners.
> ----- End forwarded message -----
Bob Jensen's threads on Identity Theft --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudReporting.htm#IdentityTheft
Bob Jensen's threads on computing and networking security --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ecommerce/000start.htm#SpecialSection
If you don't have diabetes, you should read the
following very carefully
"Stopping Diabetes Before It Happens: Efforts Target Millions Of Adults With Blood Sugar That Is Dangerously High," by Betsy McKay, The Wall Street Journal, 12, 2005; Page D1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB112112216327082716,00.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal
In the war against diabetes, researchers and doctors are focusing on a new line of defense: identifying cases of so-called prediabetes, and preventing those people from ever developing the actual disease.
Fueled by data that show weight loss and drug treatment can halt the progression toward diabetes, health experts are working on ways to make early screening and intervention a routine practice. Researchers at Emory University School of Medicine and the University of Michigan are developing tests to quickly identify those most at risk. And the Department of Health and Human Services, along with a nonprofit health-care group, is funding a pilot program in five states to identify and treat prediabetics. The aim is to create a protocol for prevention that could become a national standard.
More than 18 million Americans currently have diabetes, a leading cause of heart disease, kidney failure, amputations and blindness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Some 95% of those cases are Type 2 adult-onset diabetes, largely brought on by lifestyle issues such as obesity.
But as many as 41 million additional adults suffer from prediabetes, a condition in which their blood-sugar levels are elevated enough to greatly increase their risk of developing diabetes, federal health officials say. Those who are overweight or have high cholesterol are likely candidates for prediabetes, as are people with a family history of diabetes, among other risk factors. African-Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and some Asians are also at increased risk. Most never have any idea they may be headed toward a serious illness because there are no symptoms, but at least half go on to develop the full-blown disease.
Continued in article
Lyme Disease Benches FSU Football Quarterback
Florida State University (FSU) quarterback Wyatt Sexton will miss the upcoming college football season due to Lyme disease. Sexton was reportedly found disheveled and disoriented on a city street last month . . . "Wyatt has active Lyme disease that has resulted in neuropsychiatric and cardiovascular deficits," states S. Chandra Swami, MD, in the release . . .Lyme disease is carried by a bacterium that lives on ticks.
Miranda Hitti, "Lyme Disease Benches FSU Football Quarterback: Experts Discuss Lyme Disease Symptoms," WebMD, July 11, 2005 --- http://my.webmd.com/content/Article/108/108923.htm?z=1727_00000_5024_hv_03
As I was typing this tidbit this morning, a deer ran in front of my window. The ticks that carry lime disease are carried by deer (I think). Up here my life may be "ticking" away. On a sad note today, my neighbor's Arab mare had a cute colt that was just killed by coyotes. Until this happened I didn't even know we had coyotes up in the White Mountains.
Saved (almost) by tax cuts
Unlike Regan, Bush does little to control runaway Federal spending
"Disappearing Deficits," The Wall Street Journal, July 12, 2005 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB112113079506182976,00.html?mod=todays_us_opinion
Why is it that the dreaded federal budget deficit only commands screaming headlines when it's rising, not falling? And why is it that the deficit is portrayed as a fire-breathing, hydra-headed monster only when the press can portray the villain as "irresponsible tax cuts," not runaway federal spending?
We ask these questions in the wake of the great unreported fiscal story of 2005: the shrinking federal deficit. It's down by at least $100 billion because federal tax receipts have skyrocketed this year by 14.6% (or $204 billion) through June. Private economic forecasters now believe the budget deficit may come in at about 2.5% of GDP, which is in line with the historical average for the past 40 years. Given that we're fighting an expensive, must-win war on terror, these deficit numbers aren't too shabby.
Not even the most unbridled supply-sider predicted that President Bush's investment tax cuts would unleash such a spurt of tax receipts this year. But thanks to sustained economic growth, more Americans working and improved business profits, individual income tax receipts have shot up by 17.6%. Even more astonishing is the nearly 41% spike in corporate revenues. There's a fiscal lesson here that bears repeating: The best way to grow tax revenues is to grow the tax base, and that is what has happened this year.
Alas, what hasn't happened in Washington this year is federal spending restraint. Despite pious pledges from Mr. Bush and Republicans in Congress to trim spending growth to 4% this year, so far total nonmilitary spending is up 7.3%. Thanks to a 10% boost in Medicare (even before the prescription drug program hits next year), we now devote a larger share of the budget to health care than national defense -- notwithstanding that Congress has a clear Constitutional mandate to spend money on national security, but not so when it comes to funding gall bladder operations or Viagra.
During last year's Presidential campaign, Democrats ripped Mr. Bush for underfunding education -- which is incredible given that the Department of Education budget has jumped by a gravity-defying 20% this year and has more than doubled over Mr. Bush's tenure. One gets the sense that Republicans have thrown up their hands in despair and are pleading: Stop us before we spend again. All of this is to say that Washington doesn't have a budget deficit problem, it has a spending problem. Thank goodness for Mr. Bush's tax cuts or things would be much worse.
A Little-Used Tax Credit
The Problem: You're new to the work force and are looking for ways to reduce the tax bite as a low income worker.
The Solution: An IRS provision known as the Retirement Savings Contribution Credit has helped many low-income families by giving them tax credits if they sock money away for the future. What is less well known is that many new income earners are also eligible. The credit is between 10% and 50% of the amount they set aside in a 401(k) or IRA account -- up to a maximum of $4,000 for a married couple filing jointly and $2,000 for everyone else.
See "A Little-Used Tax Credit," The Wall Street
Journal, July 12, 2005; Page D1 ---
Bob Jensen's taxation helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob1.htm#010304Taxation
His academic past, or lack thereof, comes back to
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. on Friday struck back against a former vice president, who alleged the company violated federal whistle-blower laws when it fired him, by releasing documents that the company says call his credibility into question. Wal-Mart released copies of transcripts showing Jared Bowen, the former executive, had forged his college transcripts when he applied to work at the company's Bentonville, Ark., headquarters in 1996. According to the two sets of documents, Mr. Bowen inflated his grade point average and claimed to have received about 30 more hours of credits than he had.
Ann Zimmerman, "Wal-Mart Takes Shot at Credibility Of Fired Executive," The Wall Street Journal, July 11, 2005; Page B5 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB112086015835180999,00.html?mod=todays_us_marketplace
Down with Christians, Jews, and Atheist's:
Live Muslim or Die
In France and across Europe, messages like this are finding a broad audience. Compared to the deadly subway and bus bombings that rocked London last week, they may sound mild. There is no call for jihad or violence and the message is delivered by local citizens, not outside agitators. Yet the message is radical: People who are different are held in contempt. Mingling with mainstream society is frowned upon. Society should be founded on one religion: Islam. Magnified by the power of demographics, messages like Mr. Amriou's are presenting a profound challenge to Europe's secular democracies.
Ian Johnson and John Carreyrou, "As Muslims Call Europe Home, Dangerous Isolation Takes Root: In France, 'Political Islam' Preaches Intolerance; Challenge to Secularism Push for Virginity Certificates," The Wall Street Journal, July 11, 2005; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB112103551842081687,00.html?mod=todays_us_page_one
Jensen Comment: One of the more repulsive fundamentalist Islamic "laws" dictates that killing a Muslim woman is legal and morally right if she tries to change her religious beliefs. This has led to severe public debate, especially in Holland. Of course the majority of Muslims denounce violence and should not be blamed for the insanity of a relatively small number of fanatics.
Driveway Moment from NPR
This [story], in particular Julia Sweeney's "Letting Go of God," stopped my entire family. I was catching a show I'd missed on the computer while preparing dinner, and as the rest of the family came in, each one became involved with the show. We couldn't turn it off while we ate. Even when dinner was finished, all of us just sat around the table without moving, listening to Julia Sweeney's compelling tale. Even my 16-year-old son was captivated!
This Driveway Moment was suggested by Joyce, who listens to KQED in Northern California.
Flashback: Leading Democrats Favor a Tax Cut
The Kennedy Administration has about decided that a quick income tax cut -- effective this year, not next -- is economically necessary. It's now wrestling with what could be a far more difficult decision: Whether a tax cut is also politically possible.
The Wall Street Journal, July 11, 1962 ---
Color Europe Green and Less Productive (at least
in the short run)
Government payments account for about 15 percent of all farm income in Europe. But soon, most of those payments won't be based on production, but on managing the environment -- a fundamental change in policy.
"Europe's Shift in Land Subsidies," NPR, July 12, 2005 --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4748066
Want to seize Judge Souter's house?
Logan Darrow Clements, the man behind the movement to seize U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter's New Hampshire home through eminent domain will be the guest today on "Joseph Farah's WorldNetDaily RadioActive," the nationally syndicated talk program. Clements will announce the latest developments to turn the tables on one of the justices behind the court's Kelo decision that permits local municipalities to use eminent domain to take homes and businesses away from owners and give them to private developers in an effort to increase the tax base.
"Want to seize Souter's house? Join man behind movement on Farah show today," World Net Daily, July 11, 2005 --- http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=45205
In accounting we call it cost-profit-volume
But a number of small, private colleges in recent years have experimented with dramatic cuts in tuition rates. Much of the discussion about those colleges’ strategy has focused on whether it succeeded in attracting more applications. In Baltimore on Sunday, at the annual meeting of the National Association of College and University Business Officers, officials from three of those colleges reported on what went into their decisions to cut tuition (each by about 30 percent) and how the reductions have fared in terms of college finances.
Scott Jaschik, "Cutting Tuition, Increasing Revenue," Inside Higher Ed, July 11, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/07/11/tuition
Admissions: Worse Than Ever
Unfortunately, it has gotten worse since then. More than ever, higher education seems like a commodity, as selective colleges market themselves shamelessly, increase applicant demand, and manage enrollments as if they were commercial enterprises. And, in response, an industry of expensive services and consultants to teach applicants how to game the admissions system is booming. Uncalculated is the toll on students, integrity and fundamental fairness.
Deirdre Henderson , "Admissions: Worse Than Ever," Inside Higher Ed, July 11, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2005/07/11/henderson
Faked Research Results on Rise?
Allegations of misconduct by U.S. researchers reached record highs last year as the Department of Health and Human Services received 274 complaints -- 50 percent higher than 2003 and the most since 1989 when the federal government established a program to deal with scientific misconduct. Chris Pascal, director of the federal Office of Research Integrity, said its 28 staffers and $7 million annual budget haven't kept pace with the allegations. The result: Only 23 cases were closed last year. Of those, eight individuals were found guilty of research misconduct. In the past 15 years, the office has confirmed about 185 cases of scientific misconduct.
"Faked Research Results on Rise?" Wired News, July 10, 2005 --- http://www.wired.com/news/medtech/0,1286,68153,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_8
The Myth of Open-Source
Despite his success, Fleury is skeptical of the new generation of open-source startups now being funded by VCs. BusinessWeek Online Silicon Valley reporter Sarah Lacy caught up with Fleury on a recent trip to San Francisco to talk about making money in the world of open-source software -- and why it may not be as easy as JBoss and others have made it seem. Following are edited excerpts of their conversation . . .
"The Myth of Open-Source: JBoss founder Marc Fleury explains how his hot startup makes profits from its free application-server software," Business Week, July 8, 2005 --- http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/jul2005/tc2005078_5465_tc121.htm
PwC Settles for a hefty $41.9 million for "overbilling"
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP agreed to pay $41.9 million to settle charges it overbilled government agencies for travel expenses, the Justice Department said. The department alleged the company failed to disclose rebates it received from credit-card companies, airlines, hotels and rental-car agencies and didn't reduce reimbursement claims accordingly. PricewaterhouseCoopers didn't admit to any wrongdoing and said the policy that gave rise to the matter was changed in 2001. In late 2003, PricewaterhouseCoopers settled its share of a class-action lawsuit filed in state court in Arkansas that accused the company of overbilling corporate clients for travel-related expenses.
"Pricewaterhouse Settles Charges," The Wall Street Journal, July 12, 2005; Page C12 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB112111341898682519,00.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing
Jensen Comment: PwC is not the only large firm of keeping travel rebates secret from clients. You can read more about this question of ethics at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Fraud001.htm#BigFirms
Not just a cork stopper
Napo Pharmaceuticals is poised to launch the first Third World blockbuster drug. It sounds counterintuitive -- drugs marketed to poor people don't typically lead to big profits. But Lisa Conte, Napo's founder and CEO, hopes not only to bring an affordable diarrhea medication to millions of people in developing nations, but also to reshape the pharmaceutical industry.
Kristen Phillipkoski, "New Drug Aims to Banish Diarrhea," Wired News, July 11, 2005 --- http://www.wired.com/news/medtech/0,1286,68145,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_2
They still die
Maybe money can't buy everything, but a new study finds the wealthy manage to fund reduced misery in their last year on this planet. People 70 or older whose net worth was at least $70,000 were 30 percent less likely than poorer people to have felt pain often during the year before they died. The University of Michigan study will be detailed in the August issue of the Journal of Palliative Care.
Robert Roy Britt, "Death Less Painful for the Rich," Live Science, July 8, 2005 --- http://www.livescience.com/humanbiology/050708_rich_death.html
Leave them alone at a mall where they belong
The University of Memphis campus is no longer going to serve as a playground. Amid concerns about safety and class disruption, the university has issued a policy that prohibits employees and students from regularly bringing their children on campus. The need for the policy became apparent, faculty members said, as people began to notice groups of unsupervised kids around the university. Groups of children would regularly frolic in a fountain near the administration building. “It became a playground,” said Sheryl Maxwell, associate professor of education and president of the Faculty Senate. “It was an accident waiting to happen.”
David Epstein, "Kids Ordered Home," Inside Higher Ed, July 12, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/07/12/kids
An electronic library that teaches children how to
The $40 annual subscription provides families with unlimited access to the site and to several dozen books for children ages 2 to 9. The company plans to unveil the complete 108-book library next year. "They're beautifully illustrated with interesting stories that hold a child's attention," Teitelbaum says. "The original illustrations with text and 3-D figures reinforce that this is a book, not a video game or TV. We want kids to feel inspired to go from reading the screen to reading the hard copy." While not designed as a reading instruction program, One More Story does have features for emerging readers, such as the "I can read it" function, in which the words will be read aloud only when the child clicks the mouse there. By highlighting narrated words, the site can help children make the link between written and spoken language, Roth says.
Chelsea Waugaman, "Read the story again? Sure. Computers don't get tired," The Christian Science Monitor, July 11, 2005 --- http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/0711/p12s01-stin.html
One More Story is an interactive online library for children that was founded in 2000 --- http://www.onemorestory.com/
Bob Jensen's threads on electronic libraries are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm
Forwarded by Auntie Bev
01. Birds of a feather flock together, and then they poop on your car.
02. There's always a lot to be thankful for if you take time to look for it. For example I am sitting here thinking how nice it is thatwrinkles don't hurt.
03. When I'm feeling down, I like to whistle. It makes the neighbor's dog run to the end of his chain and gag himself.
04. If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.
05. Don't assume malice for what stupidity can explain.
06. A penny saved...is a government oversight.
07. The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing in the right place, but also to leave unsaid the wrong thing at a tempting moment.
08. The older you get, the tougher it is to lose weight, because by then your body and your fat are really good friends.
09. The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a replacement.
10. He who hesitates is probably right.
11. If you think there is good in everybody, you haven't met everybody.
12. If you can smile when things go wrong, you have someone in mind to blame.
13. The sole purpose of a child's middle name is so he can tell when he's really in trouble.
14. The mind is like a parachute; it works much better when it's open.
15. The only difference between a rut and a grave...is the depth!