Tidbits on February 27, 2006
Bob Jensen
at Trinity University 

New: Top 25 Google e-searches of the month
          Most Popular Web Sites 2006 - 2007 --- http://www.webtrafficstation.com/directory/
         
WebbieWorld Picks --- http://www.webbieworld.com/default.asp  
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/.

Internet News (The News Show) --- http://www.thenewsshow.tv/daily/

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 
Hoax Busters --- http://hoaxbusters.ciac.org/ 
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

Free Video Downloads: Check the offerings at your local public libraries
"Free Movies: Video: How to get films for nothing online: from the library," by Yvonne Dennis, The Wall Street Journal,  February 18, 2006; Page P2 ---
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114019960025277134.html?mod=todays_us_pursuits

Share your own videos on the Web and see what others are sharing
YouTube --- http://www.youtube.com/
"Instantly find and watch 1000's of fast streaming videos":  (I don't know how you do that "instantly.")
Also see (and listen) to a review of YouTube by NPR at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5207368

The Motley Fool (A Serious Guide to Personal Finance) --- 
http://www.npr.org/templates/rundowns/rundown.php?prgId=15
Includes archived video.

Video Tutorials for Excel and MS Access --- http://www.datapigtechnologies.com/ExcelMain.htm  

Video Clips of Don Knotts in The Andy Griffith Show --- http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053479/videosites
Don Knotts died on February 24, 2006
See
NPR, February 26, 2006 --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5233933
Jensen Comment:  I hope one bullet was placed in his coffin.
 


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

Johnny Cash
My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys --- http://www.goodolddogs.com/cowboypres.html

From NPR
"'Picturing The Banjo' Through American History," NPR, February 18, 2006 ---
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5223333

From NPR
Oscar-Nominated Scores: 'Geisha,' 'Gardener' --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5223502

From NPR
Oscar-Nominated Scores
: 'Munich,' 'Brokeback' --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5233690

Review of The Oxford History of Western Music (five stout volumes) ---
http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060306/griffiths
 

Photographs and Art

From NPR
"'Picturing The Banjo' Through American History," NPR, February 18, 2006 ---
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5223333

"Picturing the Banjo" features paintings, lithographs and other visual media representations of the banjo from the era of slavery through contemporary times. The images track the arrival of an instrument that came from Africa with the slaves. As it was adopted by whites, the instrument fell out of favor with blacks, and became a staple of demeaning minstrel shows.

From NPR
Dada on Display at the National Gallery of Art --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5191892

The Art of William Whitaker (I really like these) --- http://www.williamwhitaker.com/

Nori Matsumoto's Portrait of Alaska --- http://www.noriomatsumoto.com/

Will Cotton's Paintings --- http://www.willcotton.com/

African Rock Art --- http://www.africanrockart.org/main/index.php

Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy --- http://www.chinesepaintings.com/

Napoleon (From PBS) --- http://www.pbs.org/empires/napoleon/flash/fl_home.html

Leo Tolstoy --- http://www.ltolstoy.com/

Russian History Websites (links to the sites) --- http://alexanderpalace.org/

In Search of Ancient Ireland (from PBS) --- http://www.pbs.org/wnet/ancientireland/journey_flash.html

Dao Hai Phong Paintings --- http://www.thavibu.com/vietnam/dao_hai_phong/VIE1500.htm

Daren McGavin died on February 25, 2006 --- http://www.breitbart.com/news/2006/02/26/D8G0N2A84.html
Darren McGavin and Kathie Browne's Authorized Web Site and Galleries--- http://www.darrenmcgavin.net/
Afterglow by Kathie Brown --- http://www.darrenmcgavin.net/kathie%27s_tribute.htm

Don Knotts died on February 24, 2006
Don Knotts Photo Gallery --- http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0461455/
Also see http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0461455/
 


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

Find over 500 biographies of the most important writers --- http://litweb.net/

The Art of Writing by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) --- Click Here

The Cask Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) --- Click Here

A Practical Guide to the 19th Century American Male --- http://www.lahacal.org/gentleman/ladies.html

A Teacher's Guide to the Holocaust --- http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/people/people.htm

Quote Geek (also has quotes from movies) --- Click Here

E.E. Cummings Poems --- http://www.geocities.com/phaith_99/eecindex.html

Ted Kooser is the author of The Poetry Home Repair Manual --- http://unp.unl.edu/bookinfo/4864.html

George Orwell --- http://whitewolf.newcastle.edu.au/words/authors/O/OrwellGeorge/
Also see http://litweb.net/

Econ Sources --- http://www.econsources.com/

Tutor2u (economics) --- http://www.tutor2u.net/revision_notes_economics.asp

World in Conflict and Economies in Transition --- http://samvak.tripod.com/guide.html

International Monetary Fund (economic history) --- http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/center/mm/eng/mm_cc_01.htm

Rare Book Manuscript Library --- http://www.libs.uga.edu/darchive/hargrett/maps/maps.html

Rhyming Dictionary and Thesaurus --- http://rhyme.poetry.com/





A tomb now suffices for him whom the world was not enough

Epitaph of the tomb of Alexander the Great

The generation of random numbers is too important to leave to chance.
Bumper Sticker

Support for him is extremely strong, but people worry that anything that comes from economists is likely to backfire.
Harvard professor Larry Katz commenting on the resignation of President Summers
As quoted in the Boston Globe on February 23, 2006 --- Click Here 

I am not very skeptical... a good deal of skepticism in a scientific man is advisable to avoid much loss of time, but I have met not a few men, who... have often thus been deterred from experiments or observations which would have proven servicable.
Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

Charles Darwin would undoubtedly be both pleased and chagrined. The famous scientist would be pleased because a study published online this week provides the first clear evidence that natural selection, his favored mechanism of evolution, drives the process of species formation in a wide variety of plants and animals. But he would be chagrined because it has taken nearly 150 years to do so.
PhysOrg, February 25, 2006 --- http://www.physorg.com/news11181.html

The William F. Clinton Foundation has posted an Internet job listing for unpaid interns . . . One item on the web site promises hands-on experience and says the interns have the responsibility of interacting directly with the staff. (Insert any joke you would like here). No - I'm not making it up.
Jim Roberts, "Help Wanted: Bill Clinton Seeking 25 Interns," National Ledger, February 25, 2006 --- http://www.nationalledger.com/artman/publish/article_27263746.shtml

Technology will definitely solve all our problems, but in the process it will create brand-new ones. But that's OK because the most you can expect from life is to get to solve better and better problems.
Scott Adams

I can't understand why a person will take a year to write a novel when he can easily buy one for a few dollars.
Fred Allen

You don't wanna get laid, man. It leads to kissing and pretty soon you gotta talk to 'em.
Darren McGavin in a 1988 movie entitled Colors
Daren McGavin died on February 25, 2006

Well, today's eight-year-olds are tomorrow's teenagers. I say this calls for action and now. Nip it in the bud. First sign of youngsters going wrong, you've got to nip it in the bud . . . Nip it. You go read any book you ant on the subject of child discipline and you'll find every one of them is in favor of bud-nipping. 
Don Knotts as Barnie Fife in The Andy Griffith Show
Don Knotts died on February 24, 2006

Boys, when that steel door slams shut, that's the end of the happy days. No more fishin', no more ball playin', no more peanut butter sandwiches.
Don Knotts as Barnie Fife in The Andy Griffith Show

Oh, you're just full of fun today, aren't you?
Why don't we go up to the old people's home and wax the steps?

Don Knotts as Barnie Fife in The Andy Griffith Show

A dog can't get struck by lightning. you know why? 'Cause he's too close to the ground. See, lightning strikes tall things. Now if they were giraffes out there in the field, now then we'd have trouble.
Don Knotts as Barnie Fife in The Andy Griffith Show

Now here at the Rock we have two rules. Memorize them until you can say them in your sleep. Rule number one: obey all rules. Rule number two: no writing on the walls.
Don Knotts as Barnie Fife in The Andy Griffith Show

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying.
Woody Allen

If only god would give me a sign... like making a large deposit in my name to a Swiss bank account.
Woody Allen

If you're not failing now and again, it's a sign you're playing it safe.
Woody Allen

Love is the answer, but while you're waiting for the answer, sex raises some pretty good questions.
Woody Allen




The Politically Correct Fracture of Harvard University

Then he praised patriotism, telling a meeting at the Kennedy School that “patriotism” is a word “used too infrequently in communities such as this”, and lamented that the Vietnam War had led to a disaffection “toward people who wear uniforms”. This too seems to have gone down badly.
"Seeing Crimson:  Larry Summers v Cornel West," The Economist, January 3, 2002 --- http://www.economist.com/world/na/displayStory.cfm?Story_ID=923104

The Rev. Jesse Jackson, a friend of West's, charged that Summers had not made sufficient public statements committing the school to diversity.
"Who is Cornel West?" CNN, January 10, 2002 --- http://archives.cnn.com/2002/fyi/teachers.ednews/01/10/west.harvard.ap/

Those "rifts" included quarrels with a largely left-wing faculty that has about as much intellectual diversity as the Pyongyang parliament. Or, as a group of Harvard protesters so charmingly put it a year or so ago, "Racist, sexist, anti-gay -- Larry Summers, you must pay." Only on an American university campus could Mr. Summers, a former Clinton Treasury Secretary, be portrayed as a radical neocon.
"Veritas at Harvard," The Wall Street Journal, February 22, 2006; Page A14 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114057510944879735.html?mod=opinion&ojcontent=otep

A Harvard education isn't what it used to be. That's the principal lesson of yesterday's news that Lawrence Summers is resigning as the 27th president of the nation's oldest university.

By "used to be," we mean the days before the faculty ran the academic asylum, the days when administrators, students and, yes, even the trustees also had a say in setting priorities and making decisions about how a great university is run. If you remember such a time, you probably graduated with the Class of 1965 or earlier. In a letter posted on Harvard's Web site yesterday, Mr. Summers said that "I have reluctantly concluded that the rifts between me and segments of the Arts and Sciences faculty make it infeasible for me to advance the agenda of renewal that I see as crucial to Harvard's future."

Continued in article


"Coup d'Ecole Harvard professors oust Larry Summers. Now they must face their students," by Ruth R. Wisse, The Wall Street Journal, February 23, 2006 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/cc/?id=110008004

Harvard students frankly blossomed under the special attention Summers paid them. No university president in my experience had ever taken such a warm personal interest in undergraduate education. Not surprisingly, the students return his affection, polling three to one in favor of his staying on. The day he announced his resignation, they were out in force in Harvard Yard, chanting "Five More Years!" The student newspaper, the Harvard Crimson, has been outspoken in its criticism of the faculty that demanded the president's ouster. "No Confidence in 'No Confidence' " ran the headline of an editorial demonstrating the spuriousness of the charges being brought against the president, and reminding faculty to stay focused on the educational process that ought to be its main concern.

His exit exposes deep fault lines in Harvard's faculty. Scientists, economists and some in the professional schools formed the core of Mr. Summers's support, while he was generally unpopular with humanities professors. Law professor Alan Dershowitz says he and other Harvard faculty are furious that the university's board, which is called the Corporation, apparently caved to pressure from the professors who led the ouster charge. "This is an academic coup d'etat by one small faction...the die-hard left of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences," he says.
Daniel golden and Steve Stecklow, "Facing War With His Faculty, Harvard's Summers Resigns:  President's Ideas, Manner Alienated Many Professors; Fault Lines on Campus A Record of Pushing Change," The Wall Street Journal,  February 22, 2006; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114054545222679220.html?mod=todays_us_page_one

People interviewed generally thought it would be a good thing for trustees to pay more attention to faculty members, but some doubted that it would happen — at least broadly. John Thelin, a professor at the University of Kentucky and author of A History of American Higher Education (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004) said that the tensions at Harvard would be a warning to boards at places “where faculty values are strong and central to the institution.” But with fewer tenure-track faculty members in “an era of strong boards and presidents,” he said he worried that many trustees wouldn’t necessarily rush to renew the principles of shared governance. . . . To many observers of higher education, Summers stood out for his willingness to speak out on tough issues — and to take stands that might offend many on campus. “I think that Larry Summers was hired with the expressed interest of taking on some of the p.c. orthodoxies of the day,” said Anne D. Neal, president of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni. She said that Summers spoke out for numerous causes that are “central to quality in higher education” and that it was “deeply disturbing” to see him forced out.
Scott Jaschik, "Summers Postmortem, Beyond Cambridge," Inside Higher Ed, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/02/22/summers

Officials at Harvard University faced a divided campus yesterday along with fear that a search for a new president could put in limbo ambitious plans for an expansive new campus in Boston, an overhaul of undergraduate studies and a fund-raising campaign for $5 billion or more. "It's very hard to say where Harvard goes from here — it's an unprecedented situation," said Steven Pinker, a professor of psychology and a supporter of Dr. Summers. "I think all the major projects are in limbo right now, which can't be good. At the same time, Derek has given a great deal of thought to what works and what doesn't in education. That's exactly the kind of expertise we need for the ongoing curriculum reform, which a lot of us feel is a massive failure." In a brief interview yesterday, Dr. Bok said the corporation had asked him "only a few days ago" to become interim president.
Patrick D. Healy and Alan Finder, "At Harvard, Resignation Puts Big Plans," The New York Times, February 23, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/23/education/23harvard.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Many of Summers’s pals from the Clinton administration are spending their time out of office at the Center for American Progress, which recently started Campus Progress to focus on college students. David Halperin, who is leading that effort, suggests that Harvard might look to a woman outside of academe: Oprah Winfrey. Halperin notes that Oprah “knows how to bring people together and how to run an enterprise. She also loves books, fiction and nonfiction, and Harvard has lots of books.” Can’t argue with that logic.
Scott Jaschik, "Give Harvard Some Ideas," Inside Higher Ed, February 23, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/02/23/harvard

"When you make a mistake, recognize that you've made a mistake, and try to turn heat into light," Mr. Summers said, according to an account in The Harvard Crimson, the student newspaper. Perhaps not a bad insight. But "turn heat into light" just scratches the surface, really, of what he could have done to save his turbulent five-year reign. When it comes to case studies in failed management l'affaire Larry provides excellent pointers for once and future chief executives.
Patrick D. Healy, "Case Study: A Shake-Up at Harvard," The New York Times, February 26, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/26/weekinreview/26healy.html

"He was more bombastic than humble, more skeptical than complimentary, and so confident in his intelligence that he personalized issues," said Richard Chait, a professor at Harvard's Graduate School of Education. "He had a problem with grade inflation, but you don't start to deal with it by having a pitched battle against a prominent African-American member of the faculty, Cornel West. If you have questions about women in science, you respectfully gather information from people on campus for whom this is a lifelong effort. In a lot of ways he fought a one-man war."

THESE days university presidents are a hopelessly anodyne bunch. They mouth politically-correct platitudes, make nice comments to potential benefactors and, in general, do their utmost to avoid saying anything that might be misconstrued as either interesting or original. How refreshing then to deal with Larry Summers. Bill Clinton's erstwhile treasury secretary has always found it hard to suffer nonsense gladly. In Washington, DC, he was muzzled, at least in public. But since being named president of Harvard University six months ago he has reverted to type.
"Seeing Crimson:  Larry Summers v Cornel West," The Economist, January 3, 2002 --- http://www.economist.com/world/na/displayStory.cfm?Story_ID=923104 

The meek may inherit the earth, but they don't get in to Harvard.
1989 movie The Dead Poets Society directed by Peter Weir, screenplay by Tom Schulman.
Jensen Comment: 
But being meek has now become a prerequisite for becoming President of a fractured Harvard

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies are at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm


Fraud at Harvard
In a legal settlement reached last summer, Harvard agreed to pay $26.5 million

Questions
Did fraud by by a Harvard professor ultimately sink its President Summers?

"Did an Exposé Help Sink Harvard's President?" by Sara Ivry, The New York Times, February 27, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/27/business/media/27mclintick.html

"I was surprised that he was gone by February of '06," said Mr. McClintick, and "that it happened as rapidly as it did."

"How Harvard Lost Russia" was published in the January issue of Institutional Investor magazine, a subscription-only publication, about a month and a half before Dr. Summers's resignation, which he announced last Tuesday. The move came just two weeks after a Feb. 7 meeting when the president was challenged on several issues, including his reaction to events described in Mr. McClintick's article.

In roughly 18,500 words, (22,007 including sidebars), Mr. McClintick chronicled financial improprieties by those in charge of Harvard's Russia project, including Andrei Shleifer, a professor of economics who is a friend and protégé of Dr. Summers's, and Jonathan Hay, a Harvard-trained lawyer. The two men were accused of making personal investments in Russia at a time when they were working under contract to establish capitalism in the former Soviet nation.

Their behavior led the United States government to file civil charges against Harvard, Mr. Shleifer and Mr. Hay for fraud, breach of contract and making false claims. In a settlement reached last summer, Harvard agreed to pay $26.5 million. Mr. Hay was ordered to pay a fine based on his future earnings and Mr. Shleifer agreed to pay $2 million, though none of the parties admitted wrongdoing. Mr. Shleifer has not been subjected to any disciplinary action from Harvard.

Some Harvard watchers attribute that to Dr. Summers's influence, though he formally recused himself from the matter, and they see the entire affair, assiduously detailed by Mr. McClintick, as an indelible stain on Harvard's reputation.

Mr. McClintick, 65, a 1962 graduate of Harvard, is a former reporter for The Wall Street Journal and the author of several books, including "Indecent Exposure," which investigated financial scandal at Columbia Pictures. That book was a finalist for the National Book Award and helped solidify Mr. McClintick's reputation as a meticulous investigator.

Continued in article

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


United States Offers Citizenship to 7,000 Incoming Muslims
The United States has agreed to grant citizenship to 7,000 Ahiska Muslims who will be settled in Pennsylvania, reported a Russian newspaper on Friday, July 23. The first 11-strong batch of the Ahiska Muslims, living in the Russian province of Krasnodar, left for Geneva on Thursday, July 22, before flying to Philadelphia, reported Novie Izvestia. It added that the Muslims would be housed near the grand mosque in Philadelphia. The paper recalled that Krasnodar governor Alexander Tkachev was notified of the American decision on February 15 . . . "The immigrants will be provided with housing and furniture, they will be helped to learn the English language and to complete formalities needed for residence in the US, which is especially important, and have been promised life-long welfare allowances for pensioners and the disabled."
Damir Ahmed, "US Offers Citizenship To 7000 Ahiska Muslims," Islam Online, February ---
http://www.islamonline.net/English/News/2004-07/24/article04.shtml 


United States to Continue Sending Palestinians Humanitarian Aid
The United States will continue sending humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people even after a Hamas government is formed, a senior U.S. envoy told Palestinian leaders during the first high-level meeting between the two sides since Hamas' election victory.
Mohammed Daraghemu, "U.S. to Send Palestinians Humanitarian Aid ," Yahoo News, February 25, 2006 --- http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060225/ap_on_re_mi_ea/israel_palestinians


How the neoconservative right adopted the worst errors of the left
Last weekend, Johns Hopkins political scientist Francis Fukuyama declared his apostasy from the conservative philosophy he helped to create in a much-discussed New York Times Magazine essay, "After Neoconservatism."
"A Concord of Visions:  How the neoconservative right adopted the worst errors of the left," by Julian Sanchez, Reason Magazine, February 24, 2006 --- http://reason.com/links/links022406.shtml

In a concise genealogy neoconservatism, Fukuyama describes two of the movement's philosophical strains that were in tension from the outset: a deep skepticism about ambitious social engineering and a deep faith in the ability of American power—including military power—to transform the world for the better by accelerating the spread of democracy and human rights. Other strains, notably the ideas of political philosopher Leo Strauss, were added over the course of the 1990s, and neoconservative optimism about the prospects for global social engineering seemed to have triumphed any doubts that arose from that domestic skepticism.

Dissecting what he calls "the Bush administration's incomprehensible failure to plan adequately for the insurgency that subsequently emerged in Iraq," a failure that has equally baffled war supporters such as Andrew Sullivan, Fukuyama concludes that neoconservative hawks "seemed to think that democracy was a kind of default condition to which societies reverted once the heavy lifting of coercive regime change occurred."

What is striking about this characterization is its extraordinary resemblance to the worldview economist and social theorist Thomas Sowell describes in his conservative classic A Conflict of Visions as the "unconstrained vision" of man and politics—a worldview that Sowell, here and in his more polemical follow-up The Vision of the Anointed, typically regards as distinctive of the left.

Continued in article


New and Exceedingly Popular Minor in Queer Studies at the Nation's Largest Catholic University

"At DePaul, queer studies finds a niche University's offering of new minor draws full classes, also critics," by Jodi S. Cohen, Chicago Tribune, February 20, 2006 --- Click Here

It's an introductory course in queer studies, and for the next 90 minutes, Oliver and his classmates study the history of same-sex desire, the biology of gender identity and government reactions to homosexual behavior. It is no longer remarkable that the subjects are taught, but on this day, it is notable where the discussion is taking place.

The classroom is on the campus of DePaul University, the country's largest Catholic university and, it is believed, the first Catholic school to offer an undergraduate minor in queer studies. The minor became available in January.

"I can see how it may seem like a big step," said Gary Cestaro, director of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer studies, the official name of the minor.

Other Catholic schools, including Georgetown University and Santa Clara University in California, offer courses in the subject, but they fall under women and gender studies programs. The University of Notre Dame offers a course on sex and sexuality in U.S. history that includes discussion on homosexuality and gay liberation.

Continued in article


Question
What is killing so many frogs in ponds?

Human destruction of habitat is one reason for the loss. But there is a new enemy for which there may be no defense. In 1998, Karen Lips, a young biologist from Southern Illinois University, helped identify a fungus that seemed to be killing off entire species of amphibians, including, possibly, the gastric brooding frog mentioned above. It's called the chytrid fungus, and how it kills is a mystery. The best guess, according to Joe Mendelson, curator of herpetology at Zoo Atlanta, is that it attacks keratin, a protein that waterproofs the parts of a frog's skin most subject to wear and tear. The loss of keratin, it's believed, might throw off the critical water balance in a frog's body. "That's just a guess," Mendelson said, "but the best one we have right now." For years, the fungus was one step ahead of Lips and her team of biologists. They'd visit a forest where frogs were thriving, then return a couple of years later to find most had disappeared -- and with them the evidence of their fungal demise.
Michael Schulder, "Frog killer found after 6-year stakeout 'Noah's Ark' program aims to save species from extinction," CNN, February 21, 2006 --- http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/science/02/21/frog.fungus/index.html


"Switchgrass to Gas? A biotech startup says its genetic engineering method could turn plants into cheap ethanol producers within five years," by Neil Savage, MIT's Technology Review, February 22, 2006 --- 
http://www.technologyreview.com/BizTech/wtr_16408,295,p1.html


Donation (to "religious fanatic") stirs concern in education race
Inside look at the politics of choosing K-12 textbooks in Texas
In the recent past much attention was given to political correctness. Now there are growing religious faction concerns --- http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1585302/posts

Jensen Comment
Sadly, the State of Texas would never trust a teacher to choose his or her own preferred textbook. Since Texas is such an enormous market for textbook publishers, those publishers must constantly revise their books in the face changing hot winds of bias in a single book selection board. Fortunately, the political powers of textbook selection do not extend to higher education. But indirectly, higher education is impacted by the information or misinformation contained in the memories of students entering our colleges. For example, one infamous textbook with politically correct biases once rewrote history and proclaimed that the U.S. dropped the atomic bomb during the Korean War. Now the pendulum might shift toward religious fanaticism.


Basketball 101, 202, 303, ..., 1212
In the past I’ve bemoaned how athletics in Division 1 universities has turned “education” into a fraud in countless instances. It’s also a fraud at the admissions level from questionable K-12 schools.
 

The New York Times Uncovers Schools Where the Only Meaningful Curriculum id Basketball
An investigation by The New York Times found more than a dozen of these institutions, some of which closed soon after opening. The Times found that at least 200 players had enrolled at such places in the past 10 years and that dozens had gone on to play at N.C.A.A. Division I universities like Mississippi State, George Washington, Georgetown and Texas-El Paso. "I would say that in my 21 years, the number of those schools has quadrupled, and I would put schools in quotation marks," Phil Martelli, the men's basketball coach at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, said. "They're not all academic institutions."
Pete Thamel, "Schools Where the Only Real Test Is Basketball," The New York Times, February 25, 2006 --- Click Here

The National Collegiate Athletic Association acknowledges that it has not acted as such places have proliferated. For years, its Clearinghouse has approved transcripts from these institutions without questioning them.

Until revelations last year about a diploma mill in Florida and concerns about other schools like it, the N.C.A.A. chose not to police high schools. Although the N.C.A.A. recently commissioned a task force charged with curbing academic abuse, it still faces the tricky task of separating the legitimate from the nonlegitimate schools.

The Times found several schools with curious student populations.

¶Genesis One Christian Academy in Mendenhall, Miss.: Two years ago, this kindergarten-to-Grade 8 school added a high school and a Grade 13, for basketball players who did not graduate to raise their grade-point averages. At least 33 of about 40 students at the unaccredited high school play basketball, and its stars have signed letters of intent to attend Oklahoma State, Arkansas and Alabama.

¶Boys to Men Academy in Chicago: The student body consists of 16 basketball players, who can earn credit for the equivalent of eight high school core courses in a year by studying online through an accredited correspondence school.

¶Rise Academy in Philadelphia: Opened last fall, it outsources lessons to others, including Lutheran Christian and two online high schools.

¶God's Academy in Irving, Tex.: A summer basketball coach started with three students in August. Now 40 students in Grades 6 to 12, all basketball players, meet with two full-time teachers four days a week at a recreation center. The curriculum is provided and graded by an education center 25 miles away. Its star player, Jeremy Mayfield, signed with Oklahoma.

Some of these institutions recently joined other private schools to form the National Elite Athletic Association. With more than two dozen teams from Los Angeles to Toronto, this conference is seeking a shoe contract and a television deal. Its teams sometimes travel thousands of miles to play in tournaments that often attract more college coaches than fans. Those coaches will pay $100 for booklets of information about the players.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
My question is how these students managed to qualify for admittance into universities. I seriously doubt that many, if any, graduated after playing four years of basket ball in "college."

Bob Jensen's threads on controversies about athletics in higher education are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on diploma mills is at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudReporting.htm#DiplomaMill


Helpers in planning for retirement --- http://www.plan-for-retirement.com/

Naked Shorts:  Irreverent Investment Ideas --- http://nakedshorts.typepad.com 


"How to Prevent Investment Adviser Fraud," by Brian Carroll, Journal of Accountancy, January 2006 --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/jan2006/carroll.htm


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
SECTION 206 OF THE INVESTMENT ADVISERS ACT OF 1940 provides guidelines for investment advisers on what constitutes fraud.

THE SUPREME COURT HAS HELD THAT THE ACT imposes a fiduciary duty on investment advisers to act in the best interest of their clients by fully disclosing all potential conflicts of interest.

INVESTMENT ADVISERS SHOULD REVIEW CAREFULLY SEC and other disclosure requirements to ensure they clearly understand potential conflicts.

INVESTMENT ADVISERS SHOULD REVIEW ALL SEC FILINGS, client marketing materials and other significant documents to ensure that they have appropriately disclosed all potential conflicts.

Brian Carroll, CPA, is special counsel with the SEC in Philadelphia and an adjunct professor at Rutgers University School of Law, Camden, N.J.

Bob Jensen's threads on accounting practice, consultation, and financial planning are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/fees.htm 


Question
What is the average increase in earning power for each year of college?

Remarks by Vice Chairman Roger W. Ferguson, Jr. At the commemoration of Black History Month, The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland February 24, 2006 --- http://www.federalreserve.gov/BoardDocs/Speeches/2006/20060224/default.htm

Perhaps more indicative of the economic value of education, workers with college degrees earn an education premium, and that premium has risen over the past twenty-five years. Most economists have found that an additional year of schooling typically raises an individual's earning power between 8 and 15 percent. Recent studies show that four years of college boost earnings about 65 percent.1

Clearly, economic achievement and educational achievement are intertwined. For that reason, education is at the heart of efforts to promote equal opportunity for all Americans. We have made some progress in opening doors to education for African Americans; we must make more.

As I reflect on the educational attainment of black Americans, I would say that the news is still mixed. The percentage of African Americans aged 25 to 29 who have completed high school or obtained a GED remains on an uptrend. But the improvements slowed over the 1990s, and in 2004 it remained, at close to 89 percent, short of the rate for non-Hispanic white youth, which was just over 93 percent.

Continued in article


Updates from WebMD --- http://www.webmd.com/

"Men's Sex Lives Better at 50 Than 30" --- http://www.webmd.com/content/article/119/113194


"Small Business Software Grows Up:  Intense efforts for product improvements, by J. Carlton Collins, Journal of Accountancy, March 2006 --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/mar2006/collins.htm 

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Microsoft’s introduction this year of its small business accounting software is challenging the two leading competitors—QuickBooks and Peachtree—to step up their efforts with products that are ever-more technologically powerful.

The competition will be intense because “Microsoft Small Business Accounting (MSBA) is technologically more advanced than either QuickBooks or Peachtree and its price strategy is hard to beat: It’s bundled free in selected 2006 versions of Microsoft Office. With more than 400 million users of Microsoft Office worldwide, even if only a small percentage of them upgrade to the 2006 version, the new accounting program could be in the hands of millions of users by the end of the year.

With products as complex and customizable as SBA software, it’s not prudent to rely fully on assessments of reviewers or colleagues. The only way to be sure a product works best for you or a client is to test it with your own accounting data.

If you’re going to buy QuickBooks or Peachtree, purchase the accountant’s editions. They contain nearly all the additional functionality found in the various other versions of the product and they’re typically priced lower.

The stakes in the competition for small business accounting software are high. The current estimated market of small businesses is between 15 million and 25 million, with 500,000 to 2 million new businesses starting each year. Clearly, small businesses will be the winner as their accounting tools continue to improve.

Bob Jensen's threads on accounting software are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#AccountingSoftware

Bob Jensen's small business helpers are at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#SmallBusiness


From Smart Stops on the Web, Journal of Accountancy, March 2006 ---
http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/mar2006/news_web.htm

SMALL BUSINESS SITES

Be Your Own Boss
www.abcsmallbiz.com
CPAs thinking of going out on their own should bookmark this URL for start-up basics including information on Small Business Administration funding and venture capital. Find a nine-part series on how to write a winning business plan, links to state business assistance e-stops and a hiring checklist. Money Matters has articles on home-office deductions and tax planning. For lighter fare read the Funny Pages.

Small Biz Banter
www.businessforum.com
Read commentaries and case studies on cash management, corporate governance and Sarbanes-Oxley at this Smart Stop. Also find articles on banking, family-owned businesses, fraud and security, the 2004 Securities Class Action Filings Study and a six-part series on women business owners. Small and emerging companies can find IT answers and virus update alerts.

Start-Up Basics
www.businesstown.com
CPAs advising entrepreneurs and small business owners can find information on credit and collections, projections and purchasing and cost control in the accounting link at BusinessTown’s home page. Each category has links to articles, a featured book and related Web sites. Other sections offer a business loan glossary, business plan templates and overviews on corporations, partnerships and sole proprietorships.

Spotlight on the Soloist
www.fortune.com/fortune/smallbusiness
CPA sole practitioners and small business advisers can find free articles from Fortune Small Business here. Topics include building business back up after a disaster, the winners of Fortune’s student business-plan contest and entrepreneur profiles. The site also offers a start-up resource guide and a list of the top 50 small-cap stocks.

Templates and Tools
www.morebusiness.com
This Web stop offers entrepreneurs information on everything from raising capital to retirement planning. The Templates section includes sample business and marketing plans and checklists on buy/sell agreements and data warehousing. Business How-Tos gives visitors tips on building their own Web sites and marketing their services. Also check out the site’s large collection of financial calculators to estimate the alternative minimum tax and estate tax, car lease payments and long-term investment yields.

Bob Jensen's small business helpers are at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#SmallBusiness


"Options and the Deferred Tax Bite:  Just when you thought it couldn’t get any more complicated," by Nancy Nichols and Luis Betancourt, Journal of Accountancy, March 2006 --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/mar2006/nichols.htm

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Implementation of FASB Statement no. 123(R) goes beyond selecting a method to value employee stock options. CPAs also must help companies make the necessary tax accounting adjustments to properly track the tax benefits from stock-based compensation.

Statement no. 123(R) requires companies to use deferred tax accounting for employee stock options. An option’s tax attributes determine whether a deductible temporary difference arises when the company recognizes the option-related compensation expense on its financial statements. Companies will treat nonqualified and incentive options differently.

Companies that did not follow the fair value approach of Statement no. 123 must establish an opening pool of excess tax benefits for all awards granted after December 15, 1994, “as if” the company had been accounting for stock options under this statement all along. To do this CPAs must do a grant-by-grant analysis of the tax effects of options granted, modified, settled, forfeited or exercised after the effective date of Statement no. 123.

Certain unusual situations may require special handling. These include cases in which employees forfeit an option before it is vested, the company cancels an option after vesting or an option expires unexercised, typically because it is underwater. CPAs also need to be cautious of possible pitfalls when options are underwater, when the company operates in other countries with different tax laws or has a net operating loss.

Calculating the beginning APIC pool and the ongoing tax computations required by Statement no. 123(R) is a complex process requiring careful recordkeeping. The newly approved simplified method adds yet another set of computations companies need to perform. CPAs should encourage companies to begin making these calculations as soon as possible as some require tracking down historical information.

Bob Jensen's threads on accounting for employee stock options are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/theory/sfas123/jensen01.htm


Question
Why does more democracy lead to chaos and terrorism?

"Disconnected," by David Ignatius, The Washington Post via The Wall Street Journal, February 22, 2006 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114056243761879487.html?mod=opinion&ojcontent=otep

So why does the world feel so chaotic? Why is there a growing sense that, as Francis Fukuyama put it in a provocative essay in last Sunday's New York Times Magazine, "More democracy will mean more alienation, radicalization and -- yes, unfortunately -- terrorism"? I have been discussing this conundrum with friends, and I've heard two interesting theories worth sharing.

The first comes from Raja Sidawi, a Syrian-born businessman who owns Petroleum Intelligence Weekly and is one of the most astute analysts of the Arab world I know. As elites around the world become more connected with the global economy, they become more disconnected from their own cultures and political systems. The local elites "lose touch with what's going on around them," opening up a vacuum that is filled by religious parties and sectarian groups, contends Mr. Sidawi. The modernizers think they are plugging their nations into the global economy, but what's also happening is that they are unplugging themselves politically at home.

A second explanation of the connectedness paradox comes from Charles M. McLean, who runs a trend-analysis company called Denver Research Group, Inc. Noting the violent Islamic reaction to Danish cartoon images of the Prophet Muhammad, Mr. McLean argues that the Internet is a "rage enabler." By providing instant, persistent, real-time stimuli, the new technology takes anger to a higher level. "Rage needs to be fed or stimulated continually to build or maintain it," he explains. The Internet provides that instantaneous, persistent poke in the eye. What's more, it provides an environment where enraged people can gather at cause-centered Web sites and make themselves even angrier. The technology, Mr. McLean notes, "eliminates the opportunity for filtering or rage-dissipating communications to intrude." I think Mr. McLean is right. And you don't have to travel to Cairo to see how the Internet fuels rage and poisons reasoned debate. Just take a tour of the blogosphere.

Continued in article



Nothing is Worse Than a Religious War Among Ignorant Lemmings:  Terrorists Sometimes Claim to be Christian
Christian mobs stopped their killing and looting in this Nigerian city Thursday and turned to disposing of the evidence in the crudest of ways. Men burned the remains of their Muslim victims in smoldering bonfires on downtown streets, leaving behind charred legs, skulls and shoulders that minibus taxi drivers swerved to avoid. As thousands of Muslims struggled to find a way to reach the northern part of the country or huddled for protection at police stations, Christian residents in this southeastern city expressed little remorse for their role in five days of religious violence sparked by anger over the publication of cartoons of the prophet Muhammad.
Craig Timberg, "Nigerian Christians Burn Corpses Remorse Scant for Attacks on Muslims; Death Toll at Least 42," The Washington Post, February 24, 2006 ---
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/23/AR2006022300647_pf.html
 

"Israel has no 'right to exist'," by Bradley Burston, Haaretz, February 24, 2006 --- http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=686185&contrassID=2

One hundred and ninety-one nations, and only one lacks the "right to exist" in the eyes of fellow (U.N.) states.

No other country even has a "right to exist." No other country needs one.

Next up: What does a country have to do to lose its inherent right to exist?

A cautionary note. This is a trick question.

If you answered genocide, arguably the worst-case scenario, you'd be way wrong.

No one questions Turkey's right to exist. This after the deaths of more than a million Armenians beginning in 1915.

Nor did they expect Cambodia, which under the Khmer Rouge may have killed 2,000,000 people, to lose its membership in the community of nations.

Pakistan has no right-to-exist issue. This, after Bangladesh, 1971. The Rape of Nanking during Japan's wartime occupation of China? Japan gets to stay on the map.

Germany? Let's not even go there.

So why is it so hard for some people to recognize the right of Israel to exist?

A. The Jews have no need of - and therefore no right to - a state of their own because, as it is, they own everything, in particular the banks and the mass media, and because everything they don't own, they somehow control.

B. The occupation of Palestine is the greatest crime in the history of man's inhumanity to the innocent.

C. The very existence of Israel constitutes the signal humiliation of the Arab Muslim peoples in the modern era.

D. Only Muslims are allowed to conquer, occupy, claim, annex and govern territory, especially in areas where they have conquered, claimed, and annexed in the past.

E. No Muslim state is genuinely willing to help the Palestinians, so, in the end, Israel will have to do so.

The correct answer is, of course, "Yes."

There's an oddly fitting coda to the circumstance that Israel can't seem to render itself legitimate. The longer and harder that Palestinian hardliners dig in their heels in resisting recognition of the Jewish state, the less legitimacy the cause of Palestinian statehood has in the eyes of the world.

The irony is that for years and years, Palestine basked in formal recognition even as it lacked statehood, while Israel had full statehood but lacked full recognition.

Hamas must now come to grips with the possibility that if it insists on withholding recognition of Israel's right to exist as a nation, some of the Palestinians' traditional allies in Europe and elsewhere may begin to withhold recognition of the right of Palestine to exist as a future nation.

Recognition being a two-way street, it comes naturally neither to the Israelis nor the Palestinians, both peoples of late being more inclined to erect barricades than bridges.

But the two peoples can make a start. For our part, we can quit crooning the old saw that goes "There is no Palestine / There is no Palestinian People / There are no Palestinians."

We can, in short, recognize their right to exist.

At some point, whether we like it or not, whether they like it or not, they'll recognize our right to exist as well.

In the meantime, in small increments and, at times, for the wrong reasons - like being told we should be erased - we're heading gradually toward true membership in the community of nations. Like it or not.

It's only a matter of time before we're like all the others. We'll exist without any right to. Just like all the others.


London's Mayor suspended in Nazi jibe row
London Mayor Ken Livingstone has been suspended from office for four weeks after being found guilty of bringing his office into disrepute by comparing a Jewish reporter to a Nazi concentration camp guard. The three-man Adjudication Panel for England unanimously ruled that Livingstone had been "unnecessarily insensitive and offensive" to Evening Standard reporter Oliver Finegold last year.
"Mayor suspended in Nazi jibe row," CNN, February 24, 2006 --- http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/europe/02/24/uk.livingstone/index.html


Scott McLemee's take on whether U.S. colleges are "hotbeds of violent anti-American and anti-Semitic sentiment."
For my part, I have been studying the book carefully and with growing astonishment. It’s not that everything it says is wrong. Some of the people the book lists are kooks. This is not surprising: The idea that institutions of higher learning may provide a sanctuary for the moderately deranged is not exactly a news flash. (See the brilliant – if slightly fictionalized – expose of life in the scholarly land of Laputa published by the conservative journalist Jonathan Swift in 1726.) But when Horowitz contends that American faculties are hotbeds of violent anti-American and anti-Semitic sentiment — that there are tens of thousands of professors who “cheer on the killing of American soldiers and civilians, all the while collecting tax dollars and tuition fees to indoctrinate our children” — he is obliged to make something resembling a general argument. This is where the trouble starts.
Scott McLemee, "D’Ho!" Inside Higher Ed, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/02/22/mclemee
 


Friedman: Iraqi Violence Reflects Al-Qaeda Realization "In Some Ways They're Losing"
by Mark Finkelstein
NewsBusters, February 24, 2006 --- http://newsbusters.org/node/4168

If NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman is for many the voice of the center-left foreign policy establishment in the U.S., then his nuanced and not-altogether-bleak assessment of the situation in Iraq on this morning's GMA merits consideration.

It was tempting to headline this entry with the provocative notion Friedman floated that perhaps only a Saddam was capable of holding Iraq's fractious components together. But Friedman was by no means endorsing Saddam's despotic rule, musing rather whether Saddam was a cause or an effect. As Friedman put it:

"Is Iraq the way Iraq is because Saddam Hussein was the way Saddam Hussein was or was Saddam Hussein the way Saddam Hussein was because Iraq was the way Iraq is - a congenitally-divided country that could only be held together by an iron fist? We never had the definitive answer to that question but I think we're going to real soon."

Friedman noted that "Shiites have resisted all [previous] provocations but this attack on the Golden Dome Mosque is the straw that broke the camel's back and has brought Iraq to the edge. One of two things is going to happen: Iraqis are going to stare into this abyss and pull back or I'm afraid they're going to fall into this abyss and we're going to know real soon if anything is salvageable."

Friedman's response to Gibson's query as to who would want to bomb the mosque was fascinating, as it suggested that not only has Iraq become the climactic battleground of the war against terrorism and Al-Qaeda, but that the current wave of violence may reflect Al-Qaeda's perception that it is losing that battle.

Friedman:

"People have often asked why has there been no terrorism in the United States since 9/11 and my answer to them is my answer to you. I believe Al Qaeda . . . their main focus right now is to defeat us in the very heart of their world. Their focus right now is on defeating us in Iraq. After all, they want to control the Middle East. They're not interested in controlling Las Vegas.

"They know if they defeat America in the heart of their world, the resonance that will have is enormous. In contrast, if we defeat them in the heart of their world in collaboration with other arabs and Muslims by putting together some kind of decent democracy there, it will be a terrible defeat. So what you're seeing is in many way acts of unspeakable violence. I mean, going into one of the most prominent Shiite shrines, the reason they're doing it is -- that in some ways they're losing. The closer we get to producing a decent outcome there, the crazier our opponents are going to get because they know if they lose it's strategic."

Will those in the center-left of our political spectrum heed Friedman's nuanced, somewhat sanguine message, or will we hear nothing but more of the "Iraq is a disaster" drumbeat from the Democratic political establishment?


Those who have visited my office will not find this hard to believe!
 I practically live in my office.

"Accountants’ Offices Have High Germ Levels," AccountingWeb, February 17, 2006 ---
http://www.accountingweb.com/cgi-bin/item.cgi?id=101794

The latest installment of Germs in the Workplace indicates that the offices of accountants are in the top germ bracket, having nearly seven times the germ levels of lawyers’ offices. Only classrooms were found to have higher germ levels than accountants’ offices. “TV producers, consultants, and lawyers ranked on the low end of the germ spectrum,” Dr. Charles Gerba of the University of Arizona and the study’s leading researcher said. “We were pleased to find a decrease in bacteria levels. Perhaps people are becoming more aware of germs in their office and doing something about it.”

The study was sponsored and funded by Clorox Company. Samples were collected from 616 private offices and cubicles in Tucson, Arizona, and Washington, D.C. during the fall of 2005 and analyzed at the University of Arizona laboratories. The study compared germ levels of professions as well as surfaces within the profession’s offices. Results indicate that the “germiest” jobs are:

Additionally, the telephones, computer keyboards and computer mouse of teachers and the desks and pens of accountants had the highest levels of surface germs. The desks and pens of lawyers had the lowest levels of germs, as did the telephones of publicists, the computer keyboards of bankers and the computer mouse of TV producers. Dr. Gerba recommends frequent hand-washing and the daily use of disinfecting wipes on surfaces to kill illness causing germs, including those that can cause colds and the flu.

“Desks are really bacteria cafeterias,” Dr. Gerba says. “They are breakfast buffets, lunch tables and snack bars, as we spend more and more hours at the office.”

Jensen Comment
What gets me is that teachers and accountants are more contaminated than those dirty rats (oops, I meant to say lawyers). When I retire this year, my department Chair is seriously considering covering my office in plastic like they do for asbestos removal. Then poison gas will be pumped in late in the night when nobody is in the building.

February 23, 2006 reply from Ed Scribner [escribne@nmsu.edu]

Results indicate that the “germiest” jobs are:

• Teacher
• Accountant

Wow, Bob! Since we are both the top two simultaneously, it’s a wonder there’s room in our offices amidst all the germs.

Ed

February 24, 2006 reply from Paul Williams [williamsp@COMFS1.COM.NCSU.EDU]

As one who has been cited by the university's fire marshall for "excess combustibles" it doesn't surprise me, either. I'm sure some of the germs in my office are well into their senility.

Paul

February 27, 2006 reply from Linda Kidwell, University of Wyoming [lkidwell@UWYO.EDU]

Excess combustibles -- I love it Paul! Count me guilty.

Every semester, I give my students the gross facts of student life. I say something along these lines: "How many of you have seen students in your class cough or sneeze into their hands today? Then how many did you see wash their hands? Did those students hold the hand rails going down the stairs?" This always elicits cries of eew! Gross! Yuck! But then I give them the mother's pep-talk (I figure it's my prerogative) about washing their hands frequently, especially in the week leading up to exams. Of course I have to cover myself by saying, "Now I'm NOT telling you not to hold the railings on the stairs, but you might want to put your gloves on first."

Stay well.

February 24, 2006 reply from Bob Jensen

I guess we could say our offices are bugged.

Bob Jensen


"Researchers Say Adware Firm Still Duping Consumers," by Gregg Keizer, InternetWeek, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.internetweek.cmp.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleId=180206480


Red Faced H&R Block Admits to Errors on Its Own Tax Return: The Company Should've Gone to a CPA Firm
H&R Block Inc., which provides tax advice to millions of Americans, made an embarrassing confession on Thursday. It goofed on its own taxes. The company, which is in the middle of its make-or-break season preparing other people's tax returns, said it had underestimated its own "state effective income tax rate" in previous quarters -- meaning it owes another $32 million in back taxes. As a result, H&R Block said it would restate previously reported earnings going all the way back to 2004.
James Kelleher, "H&R Block Reports Tax Miscue, Lower Net, Cuts View," Reuters, February 24, 2006 --- http://today.reuters.com/news/newsArticleSearch.aspx?storyID=109911+24-Feb-2006+RTRS&srch=block

Bob Jensen's taxation helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#010304Taxation


Inspiration is a program that automates concept mapping and graphic organization --- http://www.inspiration.com/home.cfm

February 22, 2006 message from Gerald Trites [gtrites@GMAIL.COM]

I started using Inspiration a couple of months ago for graphics in publications. I found it very easy to use and was able to produce reasonable graphics very quickly. It's quite intuitive and has a lot of flexibility.

February 23, 2006 reply from Sam A. Hicks [shicks@VT.EDU]

One of our professors who uses concept mapping on a regular basis says that IHMC software is the best available.  The website is found at http://cmap.ihmc.us/ The Institute for Human and Machine Cognition is a University Affiliated Research Institute housed at University of West Florida.  The software is free for educational uses


"Faster than Fiber A new wireless technology could beat fiber optics for speed in some applications," Kate Greene, MIT's Technology Review, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/wtr_16409,258,p1.html 


Superhydrophobicity plastic that even sticky honey cannot adhere to (just close your eyes and try to spell it)
Company researchers have come up with a way to process a common polymer so that it repels fluid, even drops of honey roll right off. The resulting property is called "superhydrophobicity" -- or extreme repelling of water-based fluids -- beyond even that of a freshly waxed car.
David Talbot, "Super-Repellent Plastic," MIT's Technology Review, February 23, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/BizTech/wtr_16415,295,p1.html


Application Request from a "Student" in Nigeria received by Bob Jensen on February 23, 2006
Note that she wants me to send her an application form along with the money for tuition.
Also note that she really sent me her three names.

Dearest,

APPLICATION FOR AN ADMISSION IN YOUR SCHOOL

My names are :XXXXX, YYYYY, and ZZZZZ ,i have finished my secondary school seeking for an admission intop the unversity, i was broswing thruogh the internet iand i saw your web site ,i am truely interest in your university that is why am writing to you ,i will be very glad if you send me your admission letter and your tution fees my address is as follow :P O BOX 5555 EFFURUN WARRI DELTA STATE NIGERIA......MY PRIVATE HOME HOME ADDRESS IS :FLAT 5555 CHIEF UDITH EVU ESTATE OFF JAKPAN ROAD WARRI DELTA STATE NIGERIA. My email address is ------.....

I will be greatful if my request is been granted

thank you

your faithful

XXXXX, YYYYY, and ZZZZZ

Nigerian Fraud Email Gallery --- http://www.potifos.com/fraud/

Who are these perpetrators of Nigerian frauds?
A good cyber-scammer can make up to $7,000 a month - 22 times the average Nigerian wage - from milking gullible Westerners. His controlling boss, with an army of trained scammers under his wing in both America and Europe, will be raking in many times more. Though the fraud is apparent to many, some people think they have stumbled on a once-in-a-lifetime deal, and scammers can string them along for months with mythical difficulties. Some victims eventually contribute huge sums of money to save the deal when it is suddenly "at risk". Samuel is 19, handsome, bright, well-dressed and ambitious. He has a special flair for computers and until he quit the game last year was one of Festac's best-known cyber-scam champions.
Robyn Dixon, "Run-down town where scammers target the West," Scotsman, October 30, 2005 --- http://news.scotsman.com/international.cfm?id=2168172005

Bob Jensen's threads on consumer frauds and fraud reporting are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudReporting.htm

February 23, 2006 reply from Jim McKinney [jim@mckinneycpa.com]

It is not clear to me that she is asking for money. She might be asking how much your school costs, such as can you send me your fee schedule. She might be asking for your application form. I teach at Howard University and have some very good Nigerian students. That said if the email did not specifically address itself to Dr. Jensen or Professor Jensen or in any other way indicates that she truly was trying to get info from your school specifically.

I probably would not reply since it probably is a scam. You might consider having the admissions office email her materials using THEIR email address.

Jim McKinney

February 24, 2007 reply from Patricia Doherty [pdoherty@BU.EDU]

I'm not sure this application is a fraud, Bob. It may simply be an English language problem. I am often contacted by people who have browsed the BU web site, and found me in the faculty (I don't know how I am chosen - I am one of many, and not nearly so distinguished as the many), and written to ask for admissions information.

You notice she asked for the admission letter (perhaps her way of saying application) and "tuition fees," which may simply be asking you what the tuition and fees ARE, not asking you to provide the dollars. I don't know, I could be a hoodwink-ee here, but this rings true in some ways. By the way, I always refer all of these requests to our admissions people, and wish the prospective students the best of luck in their quest. I have provided them no further information than is available on the BU website.

February 24, 2006 reply from Jagdish S. Gangolly [gangolly@INFOTOC.COM]

Bob and Patricia,

This also might be a cultural problem. Remember the full name of Prince Charles? Charles Philip Arthur George. If I remember right, at the wedding ceremony even he got mixed up with his own name.

This also might be a prank. Shows how famous Bob has become around the world.

This reminds me of an episode regarding Ph.D admissions. A few years ago, at our Ph.D (Information Science) admissions meeting, a faculty member was praising a specific applicant from China and said that he had familiarised with the research of the faculty in the program, had written praising his research and that s/he wanted to work with him. It turned out that the same applicant had written similar letter to a bunch of faculty (with wildly different research interests) at the meeting. Needless to say, s/he did not go very far in the admissions process.

Jagdish

February 24, 2006 reply from Bob Jensen

Jim McKinney raised a similar point, although I think he was a bit more suspicious. In any case I will forward this on to admissions. The message raises two questions in my mind:

With so many Nigerian fraud email messages, why this message pierced Trinity’s filtering system?

How do legitimate and honest people of Nigeria communicate with a world that considers the entire nation fraudulent?

I guess this is an illustration of guilt by association. The Nigerian government does little other than give lip service to eliminating Nigerian scams, because the foreign exchange flow into Nigeria from these scams is second only to oil revenue.


Fun Food for the Trivia-Minded
We may not have the safest country or the happiest country but, by God, nobody has more distracting foodstuffs (except maybe Japan). Here are just a few examples of the groundbreaking packaged food items I came across on a recent shopping trip.
Lore Sjöberg "Fun Food for the Trivia-Minded," Wired News, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/columns/0,70242-0.html?tw=wn_index_2


How to Fight the IRS:  There's an increased probability that the IRS will audit you!
IRS officials have particularly zeroed in on individuals making $100,000 and above. Last year, more than 219,000 people with incomes in that group were hit with an audit, up about 32% from the previous year. Driving the crackdown are not only concerns about federal budget deficits but also evidence of cheating and other forms of tax-dodging. For example, the IRS says millions of people who should be filing returns, don't. A few days ago, officials estimated that the government is losing about $290 billion a year to cheating and other forms of noncompliance. Driving the crackdown are not only concerns about federal budget deficits but also evidence of cheating and other forms of tax-dodging. For example, the IRS says millions of people who should be filing returns, don't. A few days ago, officials estimated that the government is losing about $290 billion a year to cheating and other forms of noncompliance.
Tom Herman,"How to Fight the IRS:  Audits Soar Among the Rich; Taking the Tax Man to Court," The Wall Street Journal,  February 18, 2006; Page B1 ---
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114021913724377530.html?mod=todays_us_money_and_investing


How Not to Fight the IRS:  There's an increased probability that the IRS will audit you!
Anti-tax crusader and author Irwin Schiff has been sentenced to more than 13 years in federal prison for advising people that no U-S law requires them to pay income tax -- and for contempt of court during trial. The 78-year-old Schiff used his sentencing to again declare his innocence -- accusing what he called a "fascist" government of trying to stifle his truth. His lawyer pleaded for leniency -- arguing that Schiff is mentally ill. But U-S District Court Judge Kent Dawson in Las Vegas used against Schiff his own witness stand boast that he'd helped thousands of followers legally avoid paying two (B) Billion dollars in taxes.
"Anti-Tax Crusader Irwin Schiff Sentenced," KLAS TV, February 25, 2006 http://www.klas-tv.com/Global/story.asp?S=4549376


Internet Scams --- http://www.scambusters.org/

Bob Jensen's threads on Internet scams are at
http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudReporting.htm#ConsumerFraud

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


What if you're in love with a married woman?
Ask The Elder Wisdom Circle
The Elder Wisdom Circle was founded on the premise that people over 60 have wisdom to impart. Its 250 members nationwide offer advice to thousands who e-mail the group's Web site. These self-described "cyber-grandparents" even have a column that appears in several small newspapers. Many Circle members are computer-savvy seniors in their 60s, 70s and 80s. But the network also taps residents of nursing homes and old-age centers who may not be computer literate. Facilitators meet with groups of these elders, reading aloud letters and taking notes on the combined comments. The group's advice is later e-mailed back to the letter writer.
"'Dear Elders' Dispense Advice Online (with audio)," NPR, February 21, 2006 --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5197122


Improving Environment Quality Through Markets --- http://www.perc.org/

For example, find out how Canadians manage their forests
Case Studies in Canadian Forest Management --- http://www.perc.org/cfs.php


Basics on how to dodge corporate taxes and a listing of major corporate tax dodgers --- http://www.citizenworks.org/enron/corp_tax_dodgers.php
(also note the page of quotations)


Female Troops in Deadly Combat
Though barred from combat, female troops in Iraq often find themselves in full-fledged battle. An intimate look at the lives of the real G.I. Janes.
Tim McGirk, "Crossing The Lines," Time Magazine, February 19, 2006 --- Click Here


Question
Should the tenure system as we know grind to a rusty halt?

"Moving Beyond Tenure," by Dean Dad," Inside Higher Ed, February 21, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/02/21/ccdean

Tenure certainly meets the needs for security and predictability, but it does so by granting impunity and saddling a college with immovable costs for the life of the employee. (It used to expire at 70, which struck me as more than fair, but now it expires at death.) As any academic manager can tell you, once people have tenure, they’re almost completely unaccountable for their actions. Give large numbers of people absolute immunity for decades on end, sheltered from economic reality, stuck with the same peers for 30 years, and some very weird behaviors come to the fore.

. . .

Worse, locking a group in for decades on end has the unintended side effect of locking new hires out. In my academic field, for example, my current college’s last hire occurred during the Nixon administration. He’s still here. I’d venture to say that the field has moved forward since then, but you wouldn’t know it here.

When I’ve tried to engage faculty friends in this conversation, they’ve uniformly reacted with horror. “I’ve killed myself for years to get tenure! Don’t take it away now!”

Well, exactly. I don’t think tenure is the solution to abuse. It’s a root cause.

The labor surplus in academe is not new. Why does it persist? Why do smart people keep crowding into a field with relatively few jobs, shockingly low pay relative to its training period, and absolutely no idea where it’s going? Sure, teaching is fun, but lots of things are fun.

I think the siren call of tenure is the culprit.

Tenure creates a do-or-die moment 15 years into a career. What other profession has anything even vaguely like that? At least in law firms, if you don’t make partner, you have the option of putting out a shingle and starting your own practice. Most of us can’t afford to start our own colleges. After years of extended graduate training, some post-grad-school bouncing around, and more years of tenure-track teaching and writing, you are either set for life or summarily fired. No wonder people are edgy!

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm


Censorship of Campus Newspapers
The justices’ action leaves intact the 2005 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit decision in Hosty v. Carter, which said that student papers that are subsidized by their universities can be regulated just like high school papers. Proponents of student press freedom say that the appeals court’s ruling is a green light for administrators who want to suppress articles.
David Epstein, "When Freedom Isn’t Freedom at All," Inside Higher Ed, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/02/22/supreme
 


Pharmaceutical Companies and Medical Schools
The Association of American Medical Colleges announced Tuesday that it would create a special panel to examine potential conflicts of interest in the relationships between pharmaceutical companies and medical schools, teaching hospitals and their employees. Jordan J. Cohen, the association’s president, said its executive committee had agreed to establish the committee in the wake of an recent studies suggesting that the drug industry’s marketing efforts could undermine the objectivity of medical educators and future doctors.
Inside Higher Ed, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/02/22/qt

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


Virtual Humans:  They're not just for bedtime anymore

"Cashing In on Virtual Humans," by John Hudson, Wired News, February 22, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,70253-0.html?tw=wn_index_3

Digital humans. The very words conjure images of the polygon personas created for the next blockbuster by production houses like Industrial Light and Magic or Pixar Animation. But there is more to this technology than big-screen eye candy. Take Santos, for example.

A virtual human, Santos may save corporations big money and help the military save lives.

He's a creation of Virtual Soldier Research at the University of Iowa, and was built using algorithms combined with motion-capture data. He can be as tall or as short as his assignments dictate, and everything about Santos -- from his wire-frame skeleton to his muscle movements -- owes its existence to a scanned and digitized human volunteer.

Continued in article


"Inside the iPod Nano: We voided the warranty -- so you don't have to. A look inside Apple's flashiest toy," by Daniel Turner, MIT's Technology Review, December 2005 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/wtr_16058,294,p1.html

Inside every gadget a hundred stories lurk: What innovative memory, battery, or LCD design does it use? Where did the components come from and how do they work together? What previous design weaknesses needed fixing? And, maybe most important: How can users make the device work better for them?

Many of these stories can be teased out by ignoring that familiar warning: “no user-serviceable parts inside.” We pried apart Apple’s new iPod nano -- a music player so small that many customers are buying bulky carrying cases to make it harder to lose. But don’t try this at home. 

[Click here to see our hack. Then move your cursor over any letter on the iPod to see our gloss on that particular component.] 


Question
Why are some tax decreases that sound great to university administrators wolves in sheep's (or is that GOP) clothing?

From The Wall Street Journal Accounting Weekly Review on February 16

TITLE: IRS Backs Novel Way to Avoid Gift Taxes
REPORTER: Tom Herman and Rachel Emma Silverman
DATE: Feb 15, 2006
PAGE: D1
LINK: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113996355706674098.html 
TOPICS: Personal Taxation, Tax Planning, Taxation

SUMMARY: A recent IRS ruling confirms that individuals may prepay tuition for multiple years without having those payments fall under the annual limits for gifts.

QUESTIONS:
1.) What are current gift tax rules? How do payments of medical and tuition costs relate to those rules?

2.) How do prepayments of tuition costs help wealthy individuals to avoid estate taxes?

3.) Why has interest in prepaying tuition costs recently been sparked? What was the trigger? How is that interest evident in trends of payments to educational institutions?

4.) How do IRS rulings help tax professionals and others to draft tax plans? What is the importance of detailed facts in each case--such as whether a school to which payment is made would be willing to transfer funds if the student transfers to another institution?

5.) Suppose you are a practicing CPA discussing this strategy with a client. About what risks of this strategy would you advise your client?

Reviewed By: Judy Beckman, University of Rhode Island


New Technologies for Scholars on the Web
Organizing your papers and citations from the Web
Sharing and remotely accessing your bookmarks

February 16, 2006 message from Vidya Ananthanarayanan to the faculty at Trinity University

Dear Faculty,

Ever wished your bookmarks in Internet Explorer or other browsers were accessible anytime anyplace? Ever wanted to share your Internet resources with your class, research colleagues, or peers? How would you like to know what information sources other people in your field are using? Perhaps, you simply want to organize all your bookmarks in a manner that is more meaningful and personal to you? How often have you been frustrated by an outdated or broken URL and wished you could have saved the article or paper itself?

Want to find out more about how you can do any or all of the above? Then mark your calendars for the Social Bookmarking: Tag & Share! TEACHnology Seminar in Library Room 103 from 10:00 - 11:15 am tomorrow. We will explore online services like del.icio.us and CiteULike, and discuss ways to leverage them in the classroom and in your research. Refreshments will be served.

Vidya Ananthanarayanan
Instructional Support Manager
Center for Learning and Technology
210.999.7346
vidya@trinity.edu 
http://www.trinity.edu/ims

Jensen Comment
The CiteULike site is at
http://www.citeulike.org/

CiteULike is a free service to help academics to share, store, and organise the academic papers they are reading. When you see a paper on the web that interests you, you can click one button and have it added to your personal library. CiteULike automatically extracts the citation details, so there's no need to type them in yourself. It all works from within your web browser. There's no need to install any special software.

Because your library is stored on the server, you can access it from any computer. You can share your library with others, and find out who is reading the same papers as you. In turn, this can help you discover literature which is relevant to your field but you may not have known about.

You're currently looking at a list of the last few papers submitted by all the CiteULike users. Why not register for a free account today and start organising your collection and see just the articles you're interested in? All we need is your email address, a username, and a password. It should take less than fifteen seconds.

The del.icio.us site is at http://del.icio.us/

» keep your favorite websites, music, books, and more in a place where you can always find them.

» shareyour favorites with family, friends, and colleagues.

» discover new and interesting things by browsing popular & related items.

Bob Jensen's threads on tools and tricks of the trade are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on education technologies are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/0000start.htm


Retail Rumble: Fighting back against the new union "Wal-Mart" laws.
America's retailers announced last week that they aren't especially keen to follow the steel, airline and perhaps auto industries into bankruptcy court. If Big Labor really wants a fight over mandated health insurance, it now has one. The announcement came in the form of two federal lawsuits filed by the Retail Industry Leaders Association against the state of Maryland and Suffolk County, New York. At issue are the "Wal-Mart" laws that both jurisdictions recently passed, which would require a few large companies to pay more for their workers' health care. The lawsuits argue the statutes are "discriminatory," which may be the legal understatement of the year since both target only a few employers.
"Retail Rumble: Fighting back against the new union "Wal-Mart" laws," The Wall Street Journal, February 16, 2006 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=110007974


Maine has to raise taxes to pay for all the "savings" of its health-care program

"A SOP to Socialized Medicine: Maine has to raise taxes to pay for all the "savings" of its health-care program," by Tarren Bragdon and Adam Brackemyre, The Wall Street Journal, February 16, 2006 ---
http://www.opinionjournal.com/cc/?id=110007973

Welcome to the Pine Tree state, where a program that the governor claims has saved the state millions of dollars means that your taxes go . . . up. Maine is the home of Democratic Gov. John Baldacci's Dirigo Health, which regulates the state's health-care system and includes a subsidized health-insurance program. (Dirigo is the state's motto, Latin for "I lead.") When the law creating Dirigo Health was signed, proponents said it would reduce cost-shifting and health-system costs and ultimately cover all 130,000 uninsured Mainers within five years, including 31,000 uninsured in year one.

It hasn't worked out that way. Through the first nine months only 1,600 previously uninsured individuals enrolled in Dirigo Health's insurance product, called DirigoChoice. The other 6,000 who enrolled simply traded their private health insurance for taxpayer-subsidized DirigoChoice. The program continues to spend millions subsidizing insurance for those already insured.

. .. .

Looking further into the issue, one consultant tested the formulas that Maine used to calculate the hospital-generated savings by feeding in data from New Hampshire--which does not have Dirigo Health regulations or subsidies for uninsured health insurance, and which should presumably not show any savings at all. Nevertheless the model showed tens of millions in savings for New Hampshire hospitals. This puzzling result raised questions about the accuracy of the savings that resulted from Dirigo Health. But for now, the $44 million figure stands--and Gov. Baldacci has used it as the excuse to raise taxes.

Continued in articl


Greenland's Melt Down
The discovery that Greenland's glaciers are melting faster than anyone expected has experts worried anew about how high the seas will rise.
Michael D. Lemonik, "Has the Meltdown Begun?" Time Magazine, February 19, 2006 --- Click Here

For a short time, you can also watch the CBS Sixty Minutes module aired on February 18 --- Click Here


The price of dealing with unregulated hedge funds
A group of current and former professional football players filed a civil lawsuit in Georgia state court against an Atlanta hedge-fund firm in which they had invested millions of dollars, accusing its principals of theft, forgery and fraud. In their suit, the investors say they put a total of about $15 million into funds managed by International Management Associates LLC, its affiliates and principal Kirk S. Wright. They allege that Mr. Wright, other principals and the firm have failed to honor withdrawal requests made Dec. 5, misled investors as to the funds' investment style and forged their names on checks that bounced when deposited in the investors' bank accounts.
"NFL Players Sue A Hedge Fund For Fraud, Theft:  State Judge to Freeze All Assets Of International Management; 'Stick to Being Anesthesiologists'," by Ian McDonald and Valerie Bauerlein, The Wall Street Journal, February 18, 2006; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114022005094977567.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 hedge funds are under the H-terms at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/acct5341/speakers/133glosf.htm#H-Terms


Yawn, more fraud on top of a mountain of fraud at Merrill Lynch
Merrill Lynch & Co. has agreed in principle to pay $164 million to settle 23 class-action lawsuits related to its stock-research coverage of Internet companies during the tech-stock bubble era. The settlements leave Merrill with two suits still pending out of an initial 150 in which investors claimed to have been misled by the company's former top tech-stock analyst, Henry Blodget, and his team. The suits alleged that Mr. Blodget recommended 27 stocks to help Merrill win investment-banking assignments, even as he privately disparaged many of them.
Jed Horowitz, "Merrill to Settle Research Suits," The Wall Street Journal, February 18, 2006; Page B2 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114020205518977166.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 security analysts' fraud are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudRotten.htm#InvestmentBanking


"A (diaper) change is in the air," by Dave Barry, Miami Herald, February 19, 2006 --- http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/living/columnists/dave_barry/13806797.htm

When people ask me, ''Dave, what's it like to have a newborn baby in the household?'' I immediately answer: ''...''

This is because I am sleeping. I spend a lot of my day in an unconscious state, because my 2-month-old daughter, Sophie, does not believe in sleeping at night. She feels that the nighttime hours are best used for making loud, inexplicable, Exorcist-style noises. At 3:30 a.m., her bassinet will suddenly start shaking like an unbalanced clothes dryer and erupt with a wide range of squeaks, gurgles, chirps, snorts, snuffles, grunts, etc. It does not sound like there's a lone baby in there. It sounds like the entire Barnyard of the Demons. (Which would be an excellent name for a band.)

Sophie routinely makes noises that cannot be explained by the known laws of physics. Recently, some friends came over to admire her, and we had her all dressed up in a cute little baby outfit featuring little bloomers with cherries on them, and while everybody was gathered around admiring how sweet and delicate and innocent she looked, Sophie -- who is, physically, no larger than a standard pumpkin -- cut loose with a series of massive, resonating, bloomer-inflating bodily blasts that you would think could be produced only by a 350-pound man who had just won a burrito-eating contest. If I had not been holding her firmly at the time, I believe she would have propelled herself, missile-style, through the ceiling.

''How ... cute!'' our friends said, as the aroma wafted around us, fog-like.

I'm not saying that all Sophie does is make noises. As a brand-new human being with an inquisitive mind, she is also exploring the mystery and magic of the world around her, by which I mean she is trying to get her hands completely into her mouth. This is her primary goal in life.

Her arms and legs constantly wave around in a random manner, and every now and then, when a hand happens to land on her mouth, she becomes excited and starts sucking on it like crazy. But then, without warning, the arm yanks the hand away, which makes Sophie VERY angry. If she ever finds out who is operating her arms, she is going to give that person a piece of her mind, if she ever figures out how to talk.

Yes, it's an exciting time in our household, a time of learning and growing and having plastic bags of frozen breast milk in the freezer next to the Tater Tots. In our family, we strongly believe in breast-feeding, which has many benefits, the main one being: Men cannot do it. Not that I don't contribute! I'm always giving my wife useful breast-feeding pointers, such as: ''Time for you to breast-feed her!'' And: ''Time for you to breast-feed her again!'' And: ``I would gladly breast-feed her, but, tragically, I am a man.''

(Actually, I suspect that men CAN breast-feed; it's just that, in the entire history of the human race, no man has ever actually tried.)

I do change diapers. A LOT. It is a known baby fact that babies put out far more material than they take in; physicists now believe that babies account for most of the matter in the universe. If you were to stack up all the diapers I have changed in just two months, one on top of the other, you would never be invited to a party again for the rest of your life.

Our house would smell like a malfunctioning sewage plant, except that we have a product called the Diaper Genie, which encloses diapers in a long, odor-proof plastic bag. As a parent, I believe this is the greatest of all humanity's inventions, including low-fat Cheez-Its. You take your diaper, you put it into your Diaper Genie, you twist the plastic bag, and, as the French say, Voila! (Literally, ''You are not smelling any more the poop.'' )

When your Diaper Genie fills up, you open the bottom and remove an amazing, 15-foot-long, segmented, caterpillar-like Chain of Doodies. We've been throwing these away, but it seems to me we ought to be turning them over to the U.S. Air Force as a potentially devastating military weapon.

Another excellent item of modern baby technology is the battery-powered swing. When your baby is in a bad mood because she cannot get her hand inside her mouth, you put her in this swing and let it rock her gently into a blissful state of suspended baby animation lasting long enough that sometimes you can actually take a shower. This device works so well that I think we should make a larger version and use it to calm hyperactive adults.

If you're a psychiatric professional who would like to explore this idea, let's schedule a meeting. I want to sleep on your couch.


From The Washington Post on February 21, 2006

NBC lawyers recently asked YouTube.com to take down a popular Saturday Night Live video from their Web site. What was the name of the video?

A. SNL Chronicles
B. Happy Ending
C. Lazy Sunday
D. Narnia Tales

Jensen Comment
Share your own videos on the Web and see what others are sharing
YouTube --- http://www.youtube.com/
"Instantly find and watch 1000's of fast streaming videos":  (I don't know how you do that "instantly.")
Also see (and listen) to a review of YouTube by NPR at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5207368


Question
What was the outcome of Teddy Roosevelt's slander lawsuit against George Newett?

Answer:  Six Cents
"What Teddy Sipped," by Eric Felten, The Wall Street Journal, February 18, 2006; Page P12 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB114020969537677253.html?mod=todays_us_pursuits

Over the years, many mistook Roosevelt's high spirits for being under the influence of spirits. When T.R. ran for president on the "Bull Moose" ticket in 1912, the Roosevelt-haters insinuated that his bully bonhomie was nothing other than habitual drunkenness. "If this slander is ever printed in so many words," Roosevelt warned during the campaign, "I will bring suit for damages and settle it once and for all."

George Newett, editor and publisher of Iron Ore, the newspaper of record in Ishpeming, Mich., soon obliged. "Roosevelt lies and curses in a most disgusting way," Newett wrote. "He gets drunk, too, and that not infrequently, and all his intimates know about it." T.R. promptly charged Newett with libel, suing him for $10,000.

When the case went to trial months later, Roosevelt's lengthy witness list included a former secretary of state, secretary of the Navy, secretary of the interior, a young cousin, one of his butlers, reporters and old comrades in arms. But the big show came when Roosevelt himself took the oath.

"I have never been drunk or in the slightest degree under the influence of liquor," he declared at the start of his nearly two hours of testimony: "I never drank a cocktail or a highball in my life." Instead, Roosevelt allowed that he might have one glass of "light wine" with dinner, a glass of champagne when protocol demanded it, and perhaps a "measured spoonful of brandy" in a glass of milk before bed when the doctor prescribed it. Oh, and yes, Mint Juleps.

. . .

 

Back at the courthouse, Newett's defense team had found only one witness prepared to say he had seen Roosevelt drunk -- and he had to lam it to Canada to escape a bad-check rap. Newett knew when he was licked and read a statement in court: "I am forced to the conclusion that I was mistaken." With bully magnanimity, Roosevelt waived his demand for damages, and the court awarded him exactly six cents.




Maybe he didn't comprehend what he'd found in a dumpster
After the clerk noticed a strange smell coming from the microwave, she told police she opened the door and discovered human male genitalia wrapped in a paper towel cooking inside. McKeesport police told KDKA the man fled with the severed body part after she made the discovery. She then called the police.
"Police: Man Fled With Severed Body Part," KDKA Channel 2 News, February 24, 2006 ---  http://kdka.com/topstories/local_story_055064825.html




Once there was a Norwegian named Ole who took his wife with him wherever he went so that he wouldn't have to kiss her goodbye.

Lena was competing in the Sons of Norway Swim Meet and she came in last place in the hundred-yard breast stroke and she said to the judges, "Oh say, I don't vant to complain, but I tink those other two girls were using der arms"!

"Hey Sven, how many Swedes does it take to grease a combine?" "I don't know, Ole." "Only two, if you run them through real slow."

"Mama, I have da biggest feet in da third grade. Is dat becoss I'm Norvegian?" "No, it's because you're NINETEEN."

So what's the difference between a Norwegian and a canoe? Well, a canoe will sometimes tip.

Say, I went and bought Lena a piano for her birthday and then about a week later I traded it in for a clarinet, because you know, with a clarinet, you can't sing.


Ole bought his blond wife Lena a cell phone for her birthday. He showed her how to turn it on and told her to leave it on at all times when she was outside the house.

When she took it shopping she was surprised when her phone rang from inside her purse.

"Hello," she answered. "Is dat you Ole?"

"Yah. It be me. How do you like your new mobile phone?"

"I like it fine. But how did you know I vas at da Wal-Mart?"


So Ole got a car phone and on his way home on the freeway, he calls up Lena and he says, "Oh, Lena, I'm calling you from the freeway on my new car phone." And Lena says, "Be careful because on the radio they say that some nut is driving the wrong way on the freeway."

And Ole says, "One nut ---- heck, there are hundreds of them!"


Barney Fife: The last big buy was my mom's and dad's anniversary present.

Andy Taylor: What'd ya get 'em?

Barney Fife: A septic tank.

Andy Taylor: For their anniversary?

Barney Fife: They're awful hard to buy for. Besides, it was something they could use. They were really thrilled. It had two tons of concrete in it. All steel reinforced.

Andy Taylor: You're a fine son, Barn.

Barney Fife: I try.

Barney (Don Knotts) died on February 24, 2006




Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmark s 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/.

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