Tidbits on February 3, 2006
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

Bob Jensen's various threads --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm
       (Also scroll down to the table at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ )

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/.

I really like the Digital Duo show that appears weekly once again on PBS.  I found that you can bring up prior shows (video) on your computer by going to http://www.pcworld.com/digitalduo/index/0,00.asp

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

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

25 Hottest Urban Legends (hoaxes) --- http://www.snopes.com/info/top25uls.asp 

Stay up on the latest and the oldest hoaxes --- http://www.snopes.com/


Online Video
In the past I've provided links to various types of music and video available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

James River Plantations --- http://www.cr.nps.gov/nr/travel/jamesriver/
(This is neat video technology.)

Chris Murphy with "Visa Stamp Of Approval" (not humor) ---
http://www.thenewsshow.tv/?episode=20060201&thisFrame=215&autoplay=true

Nude Skydiving --- http://www.funnyclipcentral.com/content/nudeskydiving.php

Videos from PhysOrg --- http://physorg.com/

Mustek's portable media player gives the video iPod a run for its money --- http://www.mustek.com/
See http://wired.com/wired/archive/gadgetlab/20060124.html
 


Free music downloads --- --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

In the past I've provided links to various types of music and video available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

From NPR
Live Concert Selections --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4627437

From NPR
Solo Acoustic Concert from Colin Meloy, Laura Veirs (listen to the entire concert) ---
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5171264

From Janie
Tribute to Dottie West --- http://jbreck.com/dottie.html
Also see Country Girl --- http://jbreck.com/countrygirl.html

From NPR
Giants of Soul: A New Approach --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5161788
(Scroll down to download the samples.)

From Janie
Tribute to Elvis
--- http://jbreck.com/ElvisGoldenSinger.html

From Janie
Uptown Girl --- http://jbreck.com/uptowngirl.html

Podcast Central --- http://www.techweb.com/podcasts/

 


Photographs and Art

Brittingham Family Lantern Slide Collection --- http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/WI/subcollections/BrittinghamImgsAbout.shtml

Image Stitch Software and Gallery --- http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~mbrown/autostitch/autostitch.html

Fairbanks Alaska Ice Festival (no global warming here) --- http://www.surfalaska.com/icefestival.html

Stipple Portrait Drawings and Pen and Ink Illustration by Wall Street Journal portrait artist Noli Novak --- http://www.nolinovak.com/index2.html

Academy of Arts Foundation in St. Petersburg, Russia --- http://academart.com/

Drawings of Leonardo Da Vinci --- http://www.visi.com/~reuteler/leonardo.html

Lee Rentz Photography --- http://www.leerentz.com/

Shutter Freaks --- http://www.shutterfreaks.com/gallery2/album199/GSP_Quest

Invisibilia (Photographs with traced drawings in place of real people) --- http://www.themanwhofellasleep.com/invisibilia.html
(Includes a Tutorial)

Daniel Simon Drawings --- http://www.danielsimon.net/artdata/drawings/drawingselector.html

Ghost Co Drawings (Asian Art) --- http://www.ghostco.org/
 


Online Books, Poems, References, and Other Literature
In the past I've provided links to various types electronic literature available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm

History Timelines --- http://timelines.ws/

All Empires History Forum --- http://www.allempires.com/

From NPR
History in Audio --- http://www.npr.org/programs/lnfsound/audio/

Common-Place Poems and Other Things --- http://www.common-place.org/





When a subject becomes totally obsolete we make it a required course.
Peter Drucker --- http://www.mises.org/story/2013

The test of a vocation is the love of the drudgery it involves.
Logan Pearsall Smith as quoted by Mark Shapiro at http://irascibleprofessor.com/comments-01-25-06.htm

Link forwarded by Dr. Wolff
The psychology behind suicide bombings --- http://canadiancoalition.com/forum/messages/12057.shtml

Forwarded by Paula
Dogs Are Men in Little Fur Coats --- http://www.mamarocks.com/dog_fun.htm

What do you do with $500 million for athletic recruitment at a college?
Now we’ve got the wherewithal to launch the biggest recruitment campaign around, as soon as we finish building the Buzz basketball stadium and facilities, refurnish the chancellor’s house, and pay off some of those bad loans incurred during the tenure of our last financial officer, D. Fal Cates.
David Galef, "Our Recent Recruitment Efforts," Inside Higher Ed, February 2, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/02/02/galef
Bob Jensen's threads on athletic scandals in colleges are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm#Athletics

Population Growth:  The Vatican Versus the Facts
We are realizing the worst prophecies of aging and demographic implosion, and European politicians are seeing this with alarm," said the Cardinal. "The myth of over-population has collapsed.
"The Family in the New Economy: Reflections on the Margins on Centesimus Annus," by Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, President of the Pontifical Council on the Family, Life Style, January 31, 2006 --- http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2006/jan/06013103.html
Jensen Comment
For the facts on population growth, go to http://snipurl.com/9wu3 
Also see http://www.worldometers.info/

How come Michael Moore and Barbara Streisand have not mentioned this in their Websites?
Also removed
(along with Cindy Sheehan) from the gallery was Beverly Young. She's the wife of Republican Congressman Bill Young of Florida, who chairs the House defense appropriations panel. Her own shirt wasn't anti-war -- it read, "Support the Troops -- Defending Our Freedom."
TampaBays --- http://www.tampabays10.com/news/news.aspx?storyid=24740
Jensen Comment
Cindy Sheehan's black shirt with the white letters read: "2,245 Dead. How Many More?" --- http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/latestnews/index.php?id=5752

And Barbara Streisand complains the LA Times has become too conservative --- http://www.barbrastreisand.com/statements.html#alettertothelatimes
A Los Angeles Times Columnist Who, Unlike Howard Dean, Does Not Support U.S. Troops

But I'm not for the war. And being against the war and saying you support the troops is one of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken — and they're wussy by definition. It's as if the one lesson they took away from Vietnam wasn't to avoid foreign conflicts with no pressing national interest but to remember to throw a parade afterward. Blindly lending support to our soldiers, I fear, will keep them overseas longer by giving soft acquiescence to the hawks who sent them there — and who might one day want to send them somewhere else. Trust me, a guy who thought 50.7% was a mandate isn't going to pick up on the subtleties of a parade for just service in an unjust war. He's going to be looking for funnel cake.
Joel Stein, "Warriors and wusses:  I DON'T SUPPORT our troops. This is a particularly difficult opinion to have, especially if you are the kind of person who likes to put bumper stickers on his car. Supporting the troops is a position that even Calvin is unwilling to urinate on," Los Angeles Times, January 24, 2006 ---
http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-stein24jan24,0,4137172.column




The ugly side of outsourcing to India
India has become one of the hottest child sex tourism destinations. A report, Trafficking in Women and Children in India, sponsored by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), highlights this, mentioning not just Goa, which since the 1990s has uncovered rackets by Freddy Peats and Helmut Brinkmann, but also Alleppy and Ernakulam districts of Kerala, where houseboat tourism has lately seen a boom. But the reports findings tell only part of the story. “The attention paedophiles are paying to India is preposterous,” says Rakesh Gupta, a child rights activist. “They’re mentioning the Golden Triangle — Delhi, Agra and Jaipur — in their anonymous blog posts.”
Mayank Tewari, Ramesh Babu and Shevlin Sebastian, "Hard truth: India is haven for child sex tourism," Hindustan Times, January 21, 2006 --- http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_1604938,0008.htm


"How Reality TV Fakes It:  Phony quotes, bogus crushes, enhanced villains: the makers of "unscripted" TV spill its secrets," by James Pontewozik, Time Magazine, January 29, 2006 --- http://snipurl.com/TimeJan29


Question
How can your diet reduce the risk of having a stroke?

Answer

"State of the onion: Fruit and veg slash risk of a stroke," PhysOrg, January 29, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news10350.html

The researchers reviewed eight studies that assessed the dietary habits and health of more than a quarter of a million people in Europe, Japan and the United States.

Compared with individuals who ate less than three servings of fruit and vegetables every day, those who ate between three and five servings had an 11-percent reduction in the incidence of stroke.

Those who ate more than five portions a day had a relative reduction in stroke risk of 26 percent.

Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the commonest cause of disability in the world's wealthiest countries.

"The average fruit and vegetable intake in most developed countries is about three servings per day, and current recommendations encourage five or more servings a day," said lead author Feng He of the University of London.

Continued in article


Fun Facts from the U.S. Department of Education  ---
http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/funfacts/index.asp?StatCat_Num=2


From WebMD --- http://www.webmd.com/


Seems a bit more than a $1,600 shower curtain that got a Stanford University president in hot water
Texas Southern University President Priscilla Slade has reimbursed the university more than $138,000 for the cost of landscaping her new home, according to records released Wednesday. Slade, who wrote the check Monday, is hoping to get back into the good graces of the university's board of regents before they meet Friday to discuss her future. She is also under scrutiny for charging roughly $87,000 to TSU for household furnishings, according to a source familiar with the inquiry. Although some board members have been strongly supportive of Slade, there are still unanswered questions about the source of the money and whether...
Matthew Tresaugue, "TSU head returns $138,000 to school:  President hopes to ease concerns about expenses as regents prepare to discuss her future," chron.com, February 2, 2006 --- http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/3630014.html 

Also see "Kennedy: Where ideal meets reality in university life" ---
http://news-service.stanford.edu/news/1997/december3/duty123.html 


"Shock Therapy, Version 2.0," by Elizabeth Svoboda, Wired News, February 1, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,70085-0.html?tw=wn_index_1

Shock treatment for depression is making a comeback, and it no longer resembles a scene from One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Electroshock therapy, or ECT (the acronym stands for electroconvulsive therapy) has been used to treat severe depression for decades, but the serious side effects of the procedure, including short- and long-term memory loss, have long relegated it to last-resort status.

Widely used in the 1940s as an improvement on frontal lobotomy, ECT took a back seat to drug therapy with the advent of Thorazine in the '50s. Now, decades later, a Pennsylvania startup called Neuronetics is completing the first full-scale clinical trials of transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS.

The procedure promises to treat depression as quickly and effectively as electroshock without damaging mental function. If the positive results of the trials are confirmed, TMS could be available to patients in the United States in as little as six months.

TMS is based on the same therapeutic principle as electroshock: Mood disorders can be improved by altering electrical activity inside the brain. But because the skull is such a good insulator, ECT treatments use very high voltage to the scalp to achieve anti-depressive effects. Sylvia Plath alluded to ECT's effect on memory in her autobiographical novel, The Bell Jar. "Darkness wipes me out like chalk on a blackboard," she wrote of her experience. Also, the electrodes that deliver the current for ETC cannot be directed at any specific area of the brain.

The magnetic fields used in TMS, on the other hand, can pass almost unaffected through the skull and focus the stimulation. A rapidly changing current produced by a large capacitor creates the fields, which travel into the brain from a metal coil attached to the scalp.

"The field lines penetrate the brain, producing a small electric current," said Bruce Shook, Neuronetics' chief executive officer, who presented the company’s findings earlier this month at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco. "This causes the neurons to depolarize, turning on the 'mood circuits' of patients with major depression."

Continued in article


Question
Do politics and black history really matter to college students these days?

Answer: Probably yes to many, but then we read the following:
I asked the students in my class whether they knew who their Senate representative was," said Watson, who teaches music and sociology at three colleges in Boston. "No one knew. And when I asked who was Sen. Edward Kennedy--the most activist senator in our country--the only thing most of my students could say was that he was fat and that he was drunk. I hate to think what would have happened if I'd asked who was Shirley Chisholm.
Professor Larry Watson as quoted by Brian Robinson, "Black History Month: Does It Fuel Racism?" ABC News, February 1, 2006 --- http://abcnews.go.com/US/BlackHistory/story?id=1532309
Jensen Comment
As I see students coming into college, seemingly younger and younger every year, I find that they can't recall anything about Shirley Chisholm, Watergate, Mary Jo Kopechne, Monica Lewinsky, Oliver North, or even Mao Tse-Tung. These are familiar names only to the older and increasingly less relevant generation.


"The Life and Legacy of Coretta Scott King," NPR, January 31, 2006 ---
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5180053


Telegrams are now a part of history like the Pony Express is part of history
For more than 150 years, messages of joy, sorrow and success came in signature yellow envelopes hand delivered by a courier. Now the Western Union telegram is officially a thing of the past. The company formed in April 1856 to exploit the hot technology of the telegraph to send cross-country messages in less than a day. It is now focusing its attention on money transfers and other financial services, and delivered its final telegram on Friday.
P. Solomon Banda, "Western Union -STOP- Ends Telegram Service." Iwon News, February 2, 2006 --- http://apnews1.iwon.com/article/20060202/D8FGS7O81.html

Also see NPR's account at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5186113


Internet Worm Set to Destroy Files Today
A computer worm that infiltrated hundreds of thousands of computers last month is expected to awaken tomorrow, destroying documents and files on infected machines and networks, Microsoft Corp. and computer security experts said. The worm is variously named "Nyxem.D," "MyWife.E," "Blackmal.E," and the "Kama Sutra worm" by anti-virus companies. It is also known as "Blackworm." On the third day of each month, it will seek and delete many file types found on infected Windows computers, including Adobe PDF files and Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents.
"Internet Worm Set to Destroy Files Tomorrow," by Brian Krebs, The Washington Post, February 2, 2006 --- http://snipurl.com/wormFeb2

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


From The Washington Post on February 2, 2006

What was one of the search terms the Chinese government wanted Google to filter out from its latest search engine release in China?

A. democracy
B. George W. Bush
C. independence
D. communism


Here is a French magazine with possibly more courage than brains

"French newspaper reprints Muhammad cartoons," by Sam Knight, London Times, February 1, 2006 --- http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,251-2020190,00.html

Under the headline "We have the right to caricature God," a French newspaper today reprinted the Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that have ignited extraordinary anti-Danish protests, death threats and boycotts across the Muslim world.

France Soir published the drawings, first printed by Jyllands-Posten, a right-of-centre Danish broadsheet last September, across pages four and five of this morning's edition with an editorial that defended the freedom of the press.

"The publication of 12 cartoons in the Danish press has shocked the Muslim world for whom the representation of Allah and his prophet is banned," the newspaper said. "But because no religious dogma can impose its view on a democratic and secular society, France Soir publishes the incriminated cartoons."

For its front page, the newspaper even commissioned its own image, showing a peeved Muhammad sitting on a cloud with Buddha, a Jewish God and a Christian God, who says: "Don’t complain Muhammad, we’ve all been caricatured here."

In an accompanying commentary, the editor of France Soir, which is in financial difficulties and has a readership of around 60,000, said he would never apologise for the decision to publish. Serge Faubert wrote: "Enough lessons from these reactionary bigots!

Continued in article


Not so Fun Facts About How the Publishing Industry Checks (more accurately fails to check) for Facts
Publishers Say Fact-Checking Is Too Costly

Last Thursday, publishing-industry veteran Nan Talese was excoriated on television by Oprah Winfrey for publishing James Frey's 2003 "A Million Little Pieces," a bestselling memoir about the author's struggle to overcome drug dependency that he has since admitted is partly fictitious.  . . . Indeed, many members of the publishing industry have rallied around Ms. Talese and Random House, saying that they would have published "A Million Little Pieces" as well and could have been duped just as easily. Unlike journalists, publishers have never seen it as their purview to verify that the information in nonfiction books is true. Editors and publishers say the profit-margins in publishing don't allow for hiring fact-checkers. Instead, they rely on authors to be honest, and on their legal staffs to avoid libels suits. "An author brings a manuscript saying it represents the truth, and that relationship is one of trust," says Ms. Talese.
Jeffrey A. Tractenberg, "Publishers Say Fact-Checking Is Too Costly," The Wall Street Journal,  January 30, 2006; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113858811205659673.html?mod=todays_us_marketplace 

A Poem of Sorts
 "Freyday Morning," by Margaret Soltan, Inside Higher Ed, January 30, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/01/30/soltan


Question
Would you like to sift through millions of Enron email messages?

"Science Puts Enron E-Mail to Use," by Ryan Singel, Wired News, January 30, 2006 ---

In March 2001, just a few months before Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling resigned, an employee e-mailed him a joke about a policeman pulling over a speeding driver, whose wife subsequently rats him out to the cop for other offenses, including being drunk.

Skilling and Enron chairman Ken Lay, whose federal trial on multiple felony fraud charges starts Monday, might not see the irony that, like the driver's wife, their e-mails will soon be testifying against them, both in court and in public opinion.

Enron's inbox first hit the internet in March 2003 when the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission made public more than 1.5 million e-mails from 176 Enron employees as part of its investigation of the company's manipulation of California energy markets in 2000.

Journalists quickly scoured the e-mail for embarrassing moments and incriminating missives. Among the finds: Lay family members' thoughts about finding the perfect wedding photographer (someone who did one of the Kennedy's weddings), Enron executives angling for ambassadorships and positions in the Bush administration, instructions from Tom DeLay's staff to Lay and Skilling on how to handle $100,000 contributions and messages from Lay's secretary bemoaning the fact that she could not get tech support to fix Lay's phone, which would disconnect if answered before the third ring.

All this among countless jokes about Texas, sex, nuns, women, Latinos and priests. Other tasteful tidbits include an offensive booty-call contract and a fashion critique of government lawyers investigating Enron.

The e-mails drew the attention of more than just Californians looking for some payback for the rolling blackouts and astronomical energy bills. InBoxer, an antispam company, turned to the archive to help test its newest product, which scans company e-mails in real time for objectionable content or confidential information, according to CEO Roger Matus.

For an accurate test, Matus needed a sample of corporate e-mail in all its raw, unadulterated drama and glory. He was unsure of how useful the Enron e-mails would be, until he loaded the database and looked at the first message.

The e-mail read in whole: "So you were looking for a one-night stand, after all?"

"That was the moment I knew we had a good testing corpus," Matus said.

Of the 500,000 e-mails InBoxer included in the database, the company's algorithms identified 10,275 with offensive words and another 71,268 that included potentially inappropriate messages, such as sexual innuendos or lists of employee Social Security numbers.

"Enron had an extreme culture of people who worked hard and played hard," Matus said.

Company engineers also found some great jokes, including one about how to feed a pill to a cat, inspiring InBoxer to make the e-mails searchable inside a demo of the new product, called the Anti-Risk Appliance.

While searching through the e-mails for more on the Raptor subterfuge, visitors can also try to win Apple iPod shuffles given away to those who dig up the funniest joke, the most fireable e-mail, and the most regrettable message sent.

Commercial outfits aren't the only ones exploiting the Enron e-mail dump.

 

"10 Enron Players: Where They Landed After the Fall," The New York Times, January 29, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/29/business/businessspecial3/29profiles.html

Bob Jensen's Enron Quiz is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudEnronQuiz.htm


Bill Gates prediction of spam elimination widely misses his expectation
Two years ago, Gates said the spam problem would be "solved" by now. We're not even close, experts say, and for many reasons that don't have anything to do with Microsoft.
Gregg Keiser, "Bill Gates' Spam Prediction Misses Target," Information Week, January 24, 2006 --- http://www.informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=177103434
Also see http://www.internetweek.cmp.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleId=177103508

Bob Jensen's threads on spam are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ecommerce/000start.htm#Spam
 


Huge effort underway to end spyware
Major figures at Sun and Google -- including Vinton Cerf, one of the inventors of the Internet and now Google's Chief Internet Evangelist -- are backing a new academic anti-malware initiative that aims to spotlight spyware purveyors and ultimately give besieged computer owners simple technologies to guide their Web surfing and downloading decisions.
David Talbot, "Google, Sun Backing New Anti-Malware Effort: Harvard, Oxford researchers aim to create Internet defensive strategies geared to consumers," MIT's Technology Review, January 25, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/wtr_16184,300,p1.html

Bob Jensen's threads on spyware are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ecommerce/000start.htm#Spyware
 


Phishing Attacks Reach Record High
After several months of decline, phishing attacks rebounded in November 2005 to reach an all-time high, a security organization announced in a new report. According to data collected by the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG), a collection of over 2,000 companies, banks, ISPs, and government agencies, 16,882 unique phishing attacks were reported in November. That was a 6.7 percent increase over October's 15,820 attacks, the previous record.
"Phishing Attacks Reach Record High," InternetWeek, January 20, 2006 --- http://www.internetweek.cmp.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleId=177102489

Bob Jensen's threads on phishing, pharming, and pretexting are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ecommerce/000start.htm#Phishing


Do you want to download the new Google Pack? See http://pack.google.com/
Google Pack is designed to be a single, easy-to-use package containing a dozen different desktop applications for personal productivity, communications, security, and just for fun. How well does it work?
Barbara Krasnoff, "Review: Google Pack," InformationWeek, January 23, 2006 --- http://www.informationweek.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=177103361

I've always been a fan of independently produced, task-focused, and free (or inexpensive) software. Not only does the low (or nonexistent) price make an application innately attractive, but these types of programs are usually more interesting to investigate, more innovative in their approach, and less invasive than big-name commercial software. Which is why I was eager to try the new Google Pack, Google's collection of original and third-party applications.

The Google Pack is described on Google's "More..." page as "A free collection of essential software." How essential these products are is open to question, but there's no arguing the fact that, for the most part, these are useful utilities.

The apps included in the Google Pack are divided into Google Software (software developed specifically by and/or for Google), Additional Software (useful stuff that the Google staff apparently feels most users will want), and Optional Software (applications that were, apparently, felt to be either less necessary or less attractive). If you go to the Google Pack page, and just download the Pack without any other tweaks, you'll get the software applications in the first two categories. However, you can click on a link called "Add or remove software," where you can remove apps from the download, or add some of those included in the Optional Software category.

Continued in article


The Digital Duo has a video on how to manage your money with a computer on the Web --- http://www.pcworld.com/digitalduo/video/0,segid,216,00.asp

Heavily featured are bank rate finders, annuities information, and financial portals.
 


Question
If your hard drive fails for whatever reason and your tech helpers throw up their hands, where is the business firm of last resort for recovering hard drives?

Answer
On January 26, 2005 ABC News ran a neat feature on DataSavers
At DriveSavers Data Recovery, loss is only temporary - and we prove that again and again to business, government, academic and individual customers all over the world. With the highest success rate in the industry, for 20 years we've made possible what other companies say is impossible.We rescue lost data from hard drives and other media that have experienced everything from common drive failure, corruption, viruses, or accidental deletion, to damage from power surges, flood, smoke or fire.
DataSavers --- http://www.drivesavers.com/

January 26, 2006 reply from Gregory Leeds

One odd, last ditch technique before sending a drive off and paying an ungodly sum of money is to stick the hard drive in the freezer overnight. This can buy you at least ½ an hour with the dieing drive to try and back everything up. This won’t work for a fried drive or a drive with physical damage, but it should work for “click of death”, read error type problems.

You want to put it in a ziplock to keep the moisture from the freezer out of the drive.

Greg Leeds
Development Information Systems Coordinator at Trinity University

Recovery is not quite so simple for your tiny storage devices
If anything, this problem has gotten worse. Our digital devices have all gotten smaller, while at the same time they're carrying more and more sensitive information.
Bruce Schneier, "Big Risks Come in Small Packages," Wired News, January 26, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,70044-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_3


Question
Can you become "too familiar" with your students without necessarily being intimate?

Answer
But on Friday, Mr. Kaufman received notice from his principal that he was no longer permitted to teach at Rikers. His crime? "Undue familiarity."
Michael Winerap, "Inspiring Rikers Teacher Runs Afoul of Jail's Rules," The New York Times, January 26, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/25/education/25education.html
 


News from the Scholarly Communication blog from the University of Illinois --- http://www.library.uiuc.edu/blog/scholcomm/

January 24, 2006 Library Group Argues Before Congress
A Washington lawyer warned the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee on Tuesday not to stymie distance education and scholarship as it considers legislation that would prevent the redistribution of television footage. Congress is preparing to draft legislation that would require manufacturers of consumer electronics equipment to add components to their products so that digital television programming could not be widely copied and retransmitted over the Internet. The lawyer, Jonathan Band, representing the Library Copyright Alliance, said any legislation to require the so-called broadcast flag could counteract the Technology Education and Copyright Harmonization Act, which allows educators and libraries to transmit material from news and entertainment programs to students over the Internet. Mr. Band said that Congress should exempt from the flag certain kinds of content, such as news and public-affairs programs. The Library Copyright Alliance is made up of the American Association of Law Libraries, the American Library Association, the Association of Research Libraries, the Medical Library Association, and the Special Libraries Association. Sen. Ted Stevens, an Alaska Republican who is the chairman of the committee, said distance education is important in Alaska and that he did not want to thwart its development.
The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog 1/24/06 http://wiredcampus.chronicle.com/2006/01/library_group_a.html 

January 24, 2006 Vatican Invokes Copyright
Rome: A row has broken out in Rome about whether the speeches and writings of Pope Benedict XVI should be freely available to everyone or subject to copyright. The dispute was prompted by revelations that a publishing house in Milan had to pay £10,000 to reprint 30 lines from the first speech by the Pope following his election in April, after the Vatican transferred copyright on Papal texts to its own publishing house, Libreria Editrice Vaticana. The Vatican has said that papal texts have always been subject to copyright but that the rules were often not observed.

The Hindu
1/24/06 http://www.hindu.com/2006/01/24/stories/2006012405081400.htm 

January 23, 2006 Generations Online
The latest report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project says that Internet access is the norm for most Americans, up to age 70, and that about 90 percent of all Internet users send or receive email. Given the many other variations in Internet use among different age groups, it is notable that this basic communications tool is almost universally used. Internet users ages 12 to 28 have embraced the online applications that enable communicative, creative and social uses. Teens and Generation Y (age 18-28) are significantly more likely than older users to send and receive instant messages, play online games, create blogs, download music and search for school information. Internet users ages 29 to 69 are more likely to engage in online activities that require some capital: travel reservations and online banking.

OCLC Abstracts 1/23/06 Pew Press Release and Link to report --- http://www.pewinternet.org/press_release.asp?r=118

January 23, 2006 Elsevier Lobbying in the U.S.
British companies have spent more than $165 million (£93.7 million) since 1998 with an American lobbying industry that is being described by US Democrats as “part of a poison tree of corruption”. This week both the Republicans and the Democrats have announced proposals to clean up Washington lobbying after the scandal over Jack Abramoff, who pleaded guilty to using gifts of money, lavish meals and foreign trips to buy political influence. Although British lobbying represents less than 10 per cent of this vast network’s earnings, British spending in 2004 totalled almost $30 million....According to Alex Knott, the political editor of the Centre for Public Integrity, British lobbying in Washington was higher than for any other country, and was more than the total spent by 35 American states. The highest spenders were GlaxoSmithKline ($32.4 million), BP ($26.8 million), HSBC ($23.8 million), Reed Elsevier ($12.5 million) and Reuters ($12.2 million). Defence manufacturers, such as Rolls Royce, have, Mr Knott suggested, obtained particularly good value for money.

Open Access News 1/23/06 TimesOnline.com 1/20/06 ---
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,11069-2000869,00.html


From The Wall Street Journal Accounting Weekly Review on January 27, 2006

TITLE: Expanding Bush Budgets Irk Conservatives
REPORTER: Jackie Calmes
DATE: Jan 24, 2006
PAGE: A4
LINK: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113806257817454165.html 
TOPICS: Accounting, Budgeting, Governmental Accounting, Taxation

SUMMARY: The article describes all of the major expenditure line items in the federal budget and the major factors driving changes in tax revenues. It is useful for an introductory session in a governmental accounting class as well as highlighting the budget development process.

QUESTIONS:
1.) What are the major spending items in the Federal budget? Which of these expenditures is discretionary, and which is non-discretionary? In your answer, define discretionary and non-discretionary spending.

2.) What is the major source of revenue for the Federal government? What are other sources of revenues?

3.) Why are tax revenues decreasing, particularly as measured in the article relative to gross domestic product?

4.) In what ways are the analyses presented in the article based on methods to adjust for inflation? How are trends in these items then analyzed, i.e., how is growth measured?

5.) Why are the major categories of Federal spending increasing under the Bush administration? Why are politically conservative groups particularly frustrated by this situation?

6.) How does President Bush argue that '...the rate of growth in 'nonsecurity discretionary spending' has been cut annually..."? Why do political analysts view this statement as meaningless? How does that perception reflect the analysts' view of

Reviewed By: Judy Beckman, University of Rhode Island

 


"Combating Corporate Fraud," AccountingWeb, January 13, 2006 ---
http://www.accountingweb.com/cgi-bin/item.cgi?id=101663

The number of companies around the world that reported incidents of fraud increased 22 percent in the last two years, according to the 2005 biennial survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), which interviewed more than 3,000 corporate officers in 34 countries. In England, a recent Ernst & Young survey of the Times Top 1000 indicated the average cost of each fraud exceeded $200,000. But fraud is not the only problem. There's also misconduct, unethical behavior, lying, falsification of records, sexual harassment, and drug and alcohol abuse.

PwC found that “accidental” ways of detecting fraud, such as calls to hotlines or tips from whistleblowers, accounted for more than a third of the cases. Internal audits were responsible for detecting fraud about 26 percent of the time.

Steven Skalak, Global Investigations Leader at PwC, told Reuters: "I think the investment in control systems is paying off and detecting more crime." The study found that companies with a larger number of controls could better determine the full impact of the fraud, uncovering three times as many losses as companies with fewer controls.

Many of the new and increased controls were generated through the passage of The Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act of 2002, which made having confidential, anonymous reporting mechanisms a legal requirement for any publicly traded company. But private, government and non-profit organizations would be well advised to also create and implement this important tool.

While executives get the headlines, 43 percent of surveyed people admit to having engaged in at least one unethical act in the workplace in the last year, and 75 percent observed such an act and did nothing about it. Not spoken to the employee in question, not reported it, nothing. As much as we do not like to admit it, theft, fraud and malfeasance are common occurrences in companies. Unfortunately these practices exist in every level of the organization and irrespective of size or sector. Non-profits are stolen from in equal measure.

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners 2002 Report to the Nation indicates, "the most common method for detecting occupational fraud is by a tip from an employee, customer, vendor or anonymous source." It additionally comments, "the presence of an anonymous reporting mechanism facilitates the reporting of wrongdoing and seems to have a recognizable effect in limiting fraud and losses."

The report concludes, "organizations with hotlines can cut their fraud losses by approximately 50 percent per scheme." To be effective, a confidential, anonymous reporting mechanism must be operated by an independent, third party. Employees are understandably hesitant and reluctant to report another employee. There is not only the fear of retaliation; there is the fear of retribution and of being ostracized by co-workers. In fact, in an independent survey, 54 percent gave this as the main reason for their silence.

There is also a concern if the incident involves management, or the person required to take the report or initiate the investigation. Employees must be confident in knowing they can report an incident effectively, confidentially and anonymously. Furthermore, statistics prove that an internal hotline or reporting mechanism is rarely perceived as truly anonymous.

You can become aware of and build upon the positive aspects of employee relations while proactively addressing and heading off potentially negative issues with Ethical Advocate’s confidential, anonymous reporting mechanisms and feedback system.

Confidential, anonymous reporting mechanisms serves as an early warning system, enabling organizations to react quickly to investigate issues, and often resolve problems prior to increased malfeasance, costly stealing, litigation, or negative publicity. Spending a few dollars early on can save untold dollars and valuable time. It also creates a culture of ethical behavior that over time will diminish the prospects of these actions.

When installed properly, confidential, anonymous reporting mechanisms can uncover a variety of information that can improve processes, resolve issues, and prevent catastrophic financial losses. Like a computer network and a website, an employee hotline was once just a good idea that top companies had adopted. Now it's a mandatory part of doing business.

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

Bob Jensen's threads on the importance of whistle blowing are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#WhistleBlowing

Bob Jensen's PowerPoint files on fraud are


PwC 2005 Global Annual Review

January 25, 2006 message from inman.and.wyer@us.pwc.com

We'd like to make the Annual Review available to you, so that you may explore the contents in an interactive manner via the link below.

http://www.pwc.com/2005GlobalAnnualReview 

PricewaterhouseCoopers Global Economic Crime Survey 2005

The threat of fraud from apparently simple cases of bribery to complex financial misrepresentation is more prominent than ever on the agendas of company directors and financial regulators. PwC's third biennial Economic Crime Survey is based on interviews with more than 3,600 senior executives in 34 countries, and reveals their experiences with fraud, its causes and losses, their responses and recovery actions and the effectiveness of fraud prevention measures. Please click to the link below to access the full survey.

http://www.pwc.com/EconomicCrimeSurvey 

Protecting International Trade

How can we reduce the risk that terrorists will exploit legitimate trade to attack the United States? One answer is described in PwC's "Cargo Security White Paper." It provides an example of the application of internal control processes to increase protection and expedite cargo. Please click to the link below to access the white paper.

http://www.pwc.com/cargosecuritycontrols 

PwC on Fortune "100 Best Companies to Work For"

As we communicated to you in the past, we have placed a significant focus on our people initiatives. As a result of these efforts, we have seen a substantial reduction in turnover; and as external validation of our focus we were pleased to hear the recent announcement that PwC is on the Fortune "100 Best Companies to Work For" in 2006. Our emphasis on the development and retention of our people continues to be a top priority for us.

As always we welcome your feedback and appreciate hearing from you on how PwC can best support you as faculty members.

Regards,

Brent Inman and Jean Wyer


January 25, 2006 message from Dennis Beresford [dberesfo@TERRY.UGA.EDU]

The United States Chamber of Commerce has just released a report titled

Auditing: A Profession at Risk. It is a short but interesting read.

You can find it at

http://www.uschamber.com/NR/rdonlyres/ewj43d74z5pemtshnkdi3fvko6azefuio2npyjeicyanm3hj4spkg7ivliac62faaieqewp4vdktk4ozqfv4ucilwpe/0601auditing.pdf

Denny Beresford

Jensen Comment
I snipped the above link to http://snipurl.com/ChamberOfCommerceRep

Also see http://accounting.smartpros.com/x51502.xml

Bob Jensen's threads on The Future of Auditing are at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#FutureOfAuditing

 


Abraham Lincoln may have had ataxia
The National Ataxia Foundation describes the condition as an "inability to coordinate muscular movements that is symptomatic of some nervous disorders." The researchers have uncovered a genetic secret that has plagued the Lincoln family for at least 11 generations: a mutation that causes a form of ataxia, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported Monday. The discovery -- published online by the journal Nature Genetics -- doesn't prove the 16th president suffered from ataxia, said Professor Laura Ranum, a geneticist who led the research. But Ranum and her colleagues studied 300 distant cousins of the president and found about a third of them have ataxia.
"Study: Abraham Lincoln may have had ataxia," PhysOrg, January 23, 2006 --- http://www.physorg.com/news10157.html


From St. Jude Hospital --- http://www.stjude.org/disease-summaries/0,2557,449_2165_7290,00.html

Ataxia telangiectasia (AT) is a devasting disease that affects the nervous system. Childhood cancer, most commonly acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), Hodgkin disease or non-Hodgkin lymphoma, often shortens the lives and the quality of life for children with AT. Children with AT usually cannot tolerate standard treatments for childhood cancer.

 


Survivor is a television show on CBS --- http://www.tv.com/survivor/show/4742/summary.html
Here's a controversy about a Survivor winner who may not survive the IRS

January 23, 2006 message from Scott Bonacker [cpas-l@BONACKER.US]

Jan. 23, 2006 (The Providence Journal) - Richard Hatch wanted to know: What would his 2000 taxes look like if he hadn't won $1 million on Survivor?

So the reality-show star from Newport asked Judi Rodrigues Wallis, his Middletown, [Rhode Island] accountant, to take the 2000 return she had prepared for him, revise it and show him, she testified in U.S. District Court [last week].

"It was just for analysis," said Wallis, a key witness for the prosecution in Hatch's federal tax evasion trial. She said she took her name off the sample return and had Hatch sign a letter from her stating, "This return is not intended to be filed and is simply for your information."

Months later, she learned from Hatch that he had filed that comparison return. It resulted in him claiming a refund of $4,483 instead of the $234,800 she had determined he owed. And it prompted an audit notice from the IRS.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lee Vilker asked Wallis if Hatch told her why he filed the sample return.

"He felt that he needed to file something," she recalled. "I was surprised."

"Were you angry?" asked Vilker.

"I was too stunned to be angry at that point," said Wallis.

More at: http://www.pro2net.com/x51452.xm l


The rich get richer
Stanford University is willing to take risks with its endowment
Stanford University's endowment, boosted by deep ties to Silicon Valley, vaulted past those of Princeton University and the University of Texas system last year, as fat investment gains at the nation's richest colleges far outstripped what they received in gifts from alumni and other donors. Though Stanford's endowment ranked No. 3 -- after Harvard and Yale -- the Palo Alto, Calif., school had the fastest-growing investment pool among the nation's 10 wealthiest universities. Its endowment rose 23%, including donations and after spending on programs, to $12.2 billion in the year ended Aug. 31, according to an annual survey to be released today by the National Association of College and University Business Officers. (Fiscal years at most other schools end June 30.)
John Hechinger,"Venture-Capital Bets Swell Stanford's Endowment: Alternative Investments Give Wealthy Schools an Edge; Trinity Can't Afford the Risk," The Wall Street Journal, January 23, 2006; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113798458553353327.html?mod=todays_us_page_one

The endowment survey, done with financial firm TIAA-CREF, found that the average endowment generated a 9.3% return in the year ended June 30. That was no small achievement in a period when the S&P 500 index, including dividends, returned only 6.3%, and U.S. bonds fared only a bit better.

But endowments with more than $1 billion returned an average of 13.8%. In the 10 years ended June 30, the supersize endowments returned an average annual 12%, beating the S&P 500 by a full two percentage points. The reason was clear: The big funds had more than a third of their savings in lightly regulated hedge funds, venture-capital, private-equity and other alternative investments. Smaller funds tended to have only a smattering of these more unusual investments.

John S. Griswold, executive director of the Commonfund Institute, which provides investment management for colleges and other nonprofits, says he doesn't recall another year with such great disparities between the returns of less-affluent schools and elite universities.

The reason: Schools with smaller endowments just don't have the money and clout to get into many of the first-tier funds, which often have investment minimums in the tens of millions of dollars.

Early Reese, vice president of finance and treasurer at Trinity College in Connecticut, says his school, with its $379 million endowment, can't afford the risk of putting $100 million or so in a top-flight venture fund. For its 2005 fiscal year, Trinity achieved an 8.8% return with a portfolio 70% invested in traditional stocks and bonds. Mr. Reese says the school hopes to move its endowment into the billion-dollar range through fund raising, in part so it can increase its level of alternative investments. "Would we ever catch up?" he says. "I don't think so."

Even a slight delay in getting into high-yielding venture-capital funds has made a big difference in recent years. For the year ended June 30, Princeton reported a 17% investment return, with its heavy investments in private equity, hedge funds and other alternative assets. Christopher McCrudden, Princeton's treasurer, says Stanford preceded Princeton in investing in venture-capital firms with a big position in Google, a reason for its bigger returns. He says Princeton entered the arena in the mid-1990s. "We were a little slower getting into that kind of portfolio," he says.

Continued in article

Also see http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/23/nacubo
 


The rich get richer
Princeton University on Saturday announced a gift of $101 million to support the arts.

Peter B. Lewis, a Princeton trustee and a major arts philanthropist, is making the donation. Also Saturday, Princeton released a report on how the university can enhance the arts with the gift and through other efforts. Among the plans: creating a new center for performing and creative arts, developing a fellowship program for early-career artist/scholars to teach and create their art at Princeton, adding a new scholarly research program on the arts, and improving.
Inside Higher Ed, January 23, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/23/qt
 


It gets harder to get convictions for white collar crime
In Oregon this month, a judge dismissed criminal charges against three corporate executives, saying the Justice Department unconstitutionally pursued a stealth criminal investigation under the cloak of a less-threatening civil proceeding by the SEC. And in Alabama last year, a judge dismissed charges that former HealthSouth Corp. Chief Executive Richard Scrushy lied to the SEC, ruling that he should have been warned that the Justice Department already had opened a criminal investigation when the SEC questioned him. In both cases, the judges found the line between the agencies' roles had become improperly blurred.
Peter Lattman and Kara Scannell, "Slapping Down a Dynamic Duo: SEC and the Justice Department Fight Financial Crime Together, But Is It an Unfair Double-Team?" The Wall Street Journal, January 25, 2006; Page C1--- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113815854524255591.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing 

Bob Jensen's threads on white collar crime are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#CrimePays


Indonesia curbs foreign news
Indonesia is to begin enforcing a law that bans local broadcasters from relaying live news provided by foreign stations. The ban will affect programmes from the BBC and Voice of America (VOA), the communications minister said on Monday.
"Indonesia curbs foreign news," Aljazeera, January 30, 2006 ---
http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/D67DB029-E376-43EC-AEB7-C119B6654D0E.htm

 


Adult Blogs Have the Best Technology
Adult blogs, done right, transform a technical feed into a content buffet. Respect the culture and keep 'em coming back for more.
Regina Lynn, "Bet Your Bottom (Line) on Blogs," Wired News, January 21, 2006 ---
http://www.wired.com/news/columns/0,70046-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_4


Ford Will Shed 28% of Workers In North America
Ford announced plans to slash up to 34,000 North American jobs over the next six years and shut 14 plants as part of its restructuring plan. The auto maker also reported a $1.55 billion loss at its North American operations for 2005.
effrey McCracken and Joseph B. White, "Ford Will Shed 28% of Workers In North America:  Car Maker to Close 14 Plants As It Joins GM in Overhaul Of Detroit's Business Model," The Wall Street Journal, January 24, 2006; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113790673672053002.html?mod=todays_us_page_one


Here's one proposed solution to worker and retiree woes in the U.S. auto industry on the brink of bankruptcy due to underfunded pensions and benefits plans

"Union-Made, Union-Owned? A Plan for GM," by Jesse Eisinger, The Wall Street Journal, January 25, 2006; Page C1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113815442445055498.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing

So here's another idea: Transform GM's workers and retirees into owners in exchange for benefit givebacks.

Rod Lache, an analyst for Deutsche Bank, has been mulling over such a plan to save GM. Here's how it would work:

GM had a pension liability of about $90 billion at the end of 2004. Mr. Lache estimates GM has health-care liabilities of about $65 billion.

That's $155 billion in liabilities. The vast amount, but not all, is attributable to hourly, unionized workers.

Now let's look at the assets supporting those obligations. The pension plan had assets of almost $90 billion at the end of 2004. GM says that after investment gains of 13% last year, the plan is overfunded by $6 billion. The health-care obligations are underfunded to the tune of $50 billion. (For the purposes of this exercise, we assume simply that the pension fund is adequately funded. When GM reports 2005 year-end results tomorrow, it will be easier to assign more-accurate numbers to all of these.)

Mr. Lache proposes to give the money that is socked away for pensions and health care to the auto workers. Then, he proposes that GM transfer GMAC, the financing unit, to the workers. GMAC has about $23 billion in book value. Add that to the existing $15 billion long-term health-care trust, which employees then manage. The pension plan becomes an employee-run retirement plan.

OK, that amounts to $128 billion in assets, leaving workers far short of the $155 billion in estimated liabilities. The plan needs a sweetener: Give the workers $20 billion in GM equity. But GM's market value is just $11 billion today. So, how is that possible?

After getting out from under the benefit costs, GM would be a nimbler competitor. And it would throw off plenty of cash. Indeed, Mr. Lache estimates that GM would generate a little less than $13 billion in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization a year under his plan.

The market would give the company a multiple of five times that cash flow, Mr. Lache estimates, for an enterprise value (market capitalization plus gross debt) of about $63 billion. GM would have about $32 billion in debt remaining. There is other cash, but for this exercise, we allocate the cash and other things like the short-term health-care trust to cover restructuring costs. There would be $31 billion of equity value at the newly restructured company.

The shareholders sacrifice the potential upside from a restructuring but would avoid a bankruptcy filing. Thus, with GM's market cap growing to $31 billion from $11 billion, they can let the workers have the remaining $20 billion in additional value created by the radical restructuring.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Employee ownership did not save United Airlines from bankruptcy or excessive compensation for UAL management. Why should it work better at GM?


The UAL CEO got $125 million in compensation
United Airlines parent UAL Corp. posted a massive fourth-quarter net loss of $16.9 billion, swollen by $16.6 billion in noncash reorganization claims related to its bankruptcy case. Without those accounting liabilities, which will be extinguished after UAL steps out of court protection next week, the carrier would have reported a narrowed net loss of $297 million and an operating loss of $182 million in its 22nd consecutive quarter in the red. In last year's fourth quarter, UAL posted a net loss of $741 million and an operating loss of $570 million.
Susan Carey, "UAL Posts $16.9 Billion Loss On Bankruptcy-Related Claims," The Wall Street Journal, January 28, 2006; Page A5


German Bank to Settle Fraud Claims for $134 Million
Deutsche Bank AG said it expects to pay about $134 million as part of a settlement with federal, state, and self-regulatory agencies related to investigations into market-timing issues. The German bank also said its Scudder Distributors business has received a so-called Wells notice from the National Association of Securities Dealers regarding noncash compensation to "associated persons of NASD member firms." A Wells notice allows recipients to respond before the regulator takes civil action.
Gepffrey Rogow, "Deutsche Bank Offers Payment To Settle Market-Timing Probe, The Wall Street Journal, January 28, 2006; Page B13 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113840210055558647.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing

Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on banking and securities frauds are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudRotten.htm


"The Case for Cutting the Chief's Paycheck," by William J. Holstein, The New York Times, January 29, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/29/business/yourmoney/29advi.html

Bob Jensen's threads on outrageous executive compensation are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#OutrageousCompensation

 


Scratch off off one twenty year old Botnet creator
A 20-year-old California man pleaded guilty Monday to federal charges that he created a botnet of several hundred thousand PCs, then rented out the network to spammers and criminals. The conviction is the first in the U.S. against a botnet operator. Jeanson James Ancheta, of Downey, Calif., had been arrested in November by the FBI and charged with 17 counts of conspiracy, computer damage, fraud, and money laundering. A 20-year-old California man is the first American botnet creator to be convicted on federal charges.
Gregg Keiser,"Botnet Creator Pleads Guilty, Faces 25 Years," InformationWeek, January 24, 2006 --- http://www.informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=177103413
 


Scratch off one 20-year old hacker
Under a plea agreement, which still must be approved by a judge, Mr. Ancheta will receive from four years to six years in prison, forfeit a 1993 BMW and more than $58,000 in profit and pay $19,000 in restitution to the federal government, according to court documents. He is to be sentenced May 1.
"Hacker Pleads Guilty," The Wall Street Journal, January 24, 2006 --- http://online.wsj.com/page/2_0133.html?page=2_0133
 


ACLU wins one sort of
Two federal agencies agreed Tuesday to pay the American Civil Liberties Union $200,000 to settle a lawsuit brought to uncover information about the government's no-fly list, which bars suspected terrorists from airliners. The government will compensate the ACLU for attorneys' fees, settling a lawsuit initiated by two San Francisco peace activists who were detained while checking in for a flight three years ago. In October 2004, documents that the FBI and Transportation Security Administration provided in the lawsuit revealed the government has "two primary principles" but no "hard and fast" rules for deciding who gets put on the secret list.
David Kravets, "Feds agree to pay ACLU over no-fly list," Seattle Post-Intelligence, January 24, 2006 --- http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1110AP_No_Fly_List.html


An Older Style Way of Running a University
I have been conducting an informal poll in the past few weeks, asking friends, acquaintances and even a few complete strangers if they could identify Nicholas Murray Butler (1862-1947), the subject of Michael Rosenthal's splendid and marvelously animated biography, "Nicholas Miraculous." The most common response has been a blank stare, a reaction that would not surprise Mr. Rosenthal. A few academics dredged up a connection with Columbia University; fewer recalled that Butler was once famous as its president . . . However much it had benefited from Butler's leadership prior to World War II, Columbia entered the postwar era hamstrung by some of the effects of his 45 years of autocratic rule. The trustees were captives of their president and out of touch with the institution over which they ostensibly presided. The faculty was turned inward to a bewildering array of schools, departments, centers and institutes, all claiming autonomy and resources. The students, especially the graduate students, hung around in a state of barely suppressed rage as their thesis advisers haphazardly "supervised" dozens of dissertations. Despite these handicaps, the university had been able to function well enough during the Butler era; after the war, when its disarray became notorious in the academic world, the university fell behind most of its more nimble competitors in the scramble for research dollars.
Robert Rosenweig,"A University Transformed, and This Butler Did It," The Wall Street Journal, January 25, 2006; Page D10 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113814366168755242.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal


Wilson Pickett: Sex, Drugs and Stirring Soul
It took but one listen to a vocal by Wilson Pickett to know you were dealing with a nasty piece of work. Mr. Pickett, who died last week at age 64, had many run-ins with the law -- he spent a year in prison following a drunken-driving conviction -- but the nastiness in his voice and performance style preceded his legal woes. Sounding as if his throat had been swabbed with sandpaper, Mr. Pickett attacked a song as if he'd had to fight his way to the microphone and would have to bleed to keep it. When he went down-tempo, his simmering swagger suggested he could explode before the song was through. Mr. Pickett's performances were about blunt sexuality and his unrelenting struggle to persevere. Mr. Pickett had many successes. His roster of hits recorded in the mid-to-late '60s are among the finest examples of American soul music: "In the Midnight Hour," "634-5789," "Funky Broadway," "Land of 1,000 Dances" and "Don't Knock My Love, Pt. 1," all of which went to the top spot in Billboard's R&B charts, and "Mustang Sally," which should have.
Jim Fusilli, "Wilson Pickett: Sex, Drugs and Stirring Soul," The Wall Street Journal, January 25, 2006; Page D10 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113814882479955357.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal 




Yiddish for Dick and Jane --- http://www.vidlit.com/yidlit/
 


David Albrecht sent the link to this "game" for idle minds --- http://img252.echo.cx/img252/8159/006wo.swf
It does illustrate how curiosity leads us to "take chances."
 


Forwarded by Dick Haar

Those who jump off a bridge in Paris are in Seine.

A backward  poet writes inverse.

A man's home is his castle, in a manor of speaking. 

Dijon vu - the same mustard as before.

Practice safe eating -  always use condiments.

Shotgun wedding: A case of wife or death. 

A man needs a mistress just to break the monogamy.

A hangover is  the wrath of grapes.

Dancing cheek-to-cheek is really a form of floor  play.

Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

Condoms should be used  on every conceivable occasion.

Reading while sunbathing makes you well  red.

When two egotists meet, it's an I for an I.

A bicycle can't  stand on its own because it is two tired.

What's the definition of a  will? (It's a dead giveaway.)

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like  a banana.

In democracy your vote counts. In feudalism your count votes. 

She was engaged to a boyfriend with a wooden leg but broke it off. 

A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.

If you don't  pay your exorcist, you get repossessed.

With her marriage, she got a new  name and a dress.

When a clock is hungry, it goes back four seconds. 

The man who fell into an upholstery machine is fully recovered. 

You feel stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

Local Area  Network in Australia: the LAN down under.

He often broke into song  because he couldn't find the key.

Every calendar's days are numbered. 

A lot of money is tainted - t'aint yours and t'aint mine.

A  boiled egg for breakfast is hard to beat.

He had a photographic memory  that was never developed.

A plateau is a high form of flattery. 

A midget fortune-teller who escapes from prison is a small medium at  large.


Those who get too big for their breeches will be exposed in the  end.

Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead-to-know basis. 

Santa's helpers are subordinate clauses.

Acupuncture is a jab  well done.

Once you've seen one shopping centre, you've seen a  mall.

 
 




Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
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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/.

International Accounting News (including the U.S.)

AccountingEducation.com and Double Entries --- http://www.accountingeducation.com/
        Upcoming international accounting conferences --- http://www.accountingeducation.com/events/index.cfm
        Thousands of journal abstracts --- http://www.accountingeducation.com/journals/index.cfm
Deloitte's International Accounting News --- http://www.iasplus.com/index.htm
Association of International Accountants --- http://www.aia.org.uk/ 
WebCPA --- http://www.webcpa.com/
FASB --- http://www.fasb.org/
IASB --- http://www.fasb.org/
Others --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob1.htm

Gerald Trite's great set of links --- http://iago.stfx.ca/people/gtrites/Docs/bookmark.htm 

Richard Torian's Managerial Accounting Information Center --- http://www.informationforaccountants.com/ 

 

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