Tidbits on March 30, 2005
Bob Jensen at Trinity University 

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

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

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

Campaign for Trinity University --- http://www.trinity.edu/departments/public_relations/case_statement/index.htm 

Next time you order a coffee and babyccino, think of this. The $448,000 quoted as the average cost of raising two children from birth to age 20 equates to about $30 a day a child. It costs, say, $3 a day to feed a coffee habit.
"Furious tantrums on show - and that's just the adults," Sydney Morning Herald, March 30, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/03/29/1111862390351.html




A computer scientist at Trinity University told me that a great source for legal studies of copyright and patent law is Eben Moglen at Columbia University --- http://emoglen.law.columbia.edu/

He runs a blog called "Freedom Now" at http://emoglen.law.columbia.edu/blog
Entries are relatively infrequent and date back to April 2000
There are also a few links to audio and video presentations.

Here's a March 7, 2005 entry at http://emoglen.law.columbia.edu/blog 
The United States Department of Justice announced today that it would be making a radical purchasing decision: stop dealing with the firm it considers an illegal monopoly. No more Microsoft Word at Main Justice. So they will spend $13 million to acquire Word Perfect licenses from Corel. Did they consider OpenOffice at $0? Why bother—Let’s just cut Social Security benefits instead.

The February 16, 2005 entry contains the following quote from "Freedom and the Robot Army"
The twenty-first century will be different. The United States will lead the way.
The Pentagon is investing heavily in the development of robot infantry. Given the resources it will bring to bear, within two decades we will see the introduction of machines that remove all sense of consequences, personal and social, from the business of killing. Robot infantry may or may not prove valuable battlefield soldiers. In specialized roles they will probably succeed in being more cost-effective than human combatants. But at the violent suppression of political unrest they will be unparalleled. A brigade or two will be within the budget of every autocrat faced with a green or orange or red revolution. We won’t need them to be torturers, however. For that, as we have learned, human volunteers are always available.

Bob Jensen's thread son copyright law and the evil DMCA are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/theworry.htm#Copyright


Goggle Hacking for fun and ID theft
All manner of personal data are left exposed in nooks and crannies of the Web by individuals, companies and government agencies. Would-be identity thieves can find such information using the search engines of Google Inc., Yahoo Inc. and other companies in a technique known as "Google hacking." Security experts held a contest this month to show just how quick and effective Google hacking can be. During a technology security-industry meeting in Seattle, contestants using only Google for less than an hour turned up sensitive information -- potentially useful for financial fraud -- on about 25 million people. They dug up various combinations of people's names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, and credit-card information, including some card numbers apparently left exposed by the U.S. Department of Justice . . . Google's search engine has cataloged over eight billion Web pages, recording information from them for later retrieval. In the process, it collects data that companies and government agencies have unknowingly left exposed to the public on the Web. Security experts say incompetence or negligence are mostly to blame for that private data being publicly accessible. Employees transfer data to computers they assume can be reached only from within their organizations' networks, when the computers are in fact configured for public Web access. In other cases, online businesses such as e-commerce sites never bother to hide their customer data from view of those who know where to look for it. Once the data are in the search engines' indexes, individuals are able to find the personal information by searching using special strings of text known as "Google hacks." Kevin J. Delaney, "Identity Theft Made Easier:  Hackers Use Simple Tricks With Google, Yahoo Searches To Tap Personal Information," The Wall Street Journal, March 29, 2005; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111205677536691444,00.html?mod=todays_us_marketplace
Jensen Comment:  See http://johnny.ihackstuff.com/index.php?module=prodreviews


Scientists at the University of California have designed a molecule to block cat allergies. The report is published in the April issue of research journal Nature Medicine. This shows great promise for humans but so far is limited to mice who, in turn, have greater "allergies" to cats.  The article is not yet posted on the Web --- http://www.nature.com/nm/index.html


Doctors in it for the money should take more accounting courses and less medical study
Doctors quickly learn that how much they make has little to do with how good they are. It largely depends on how they handle the business side of their practice. “A patient calls to schedule an appointment, and right there things can fall apart,” she said. If patients don’t have insurance, you have to see if they qualify for a state assistance program like Medicaid. If they do have insurance, you have to find out whether the insurer lists you as a valid physician. You have to make sure the insurer covers the service the patient is seeing you for and find out the stipulations that are made on that service. You have to make sure the patient has the appropriate referral number from his primary-care physician. You also have to find out if the patient has any outstanding deductibles or a co-payment to make, because patients are supposed to bring the money when they see you. “Patients find this extremely upsetting,” Parillo said. “ ‘I have insurance! Why do I have to pay for anything! I didn’t bring any money!’ Suddenly, you have to be a financial counsellor. At the same time, you feel terrible telling them not to come in unless they bring cash, check, or credit card. So you see them anyway, and now you’re going to lose twenty per cent, which is more than your margin, right off the bat.”
Atul Gawande, "PIECEWORK:  Medicine’s money problem," The New Yorker, March 28, 2005 --- http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/articles/050404fa_fact
Jensen Comment:  This partly explains why some very good physicians opt to work for HMOs.  That relieves them of the business and accounting side of their profession which, in turn, can lead to sleeplessness, hypertension, and significant losses of fees from their private practices.  The "business" of medicine is really not a very good business in many instances.


Blogging in Iran raises fundamental questions about blogging in general
So what would a really interesting and exciting piece of qualitative research on blogging look like? And how would it get around the problems of overfamiliarity with the phenomenon (on the one hand) and blogospheric navel-gazing (on the other)? To get an answer, it isn’t necessary to speculate. Just read “The Vulgar Spirit of Blogging: On Language, Culture, and Power in Persian Weblogestan,” by Alireza Doostdar, which appears in the current issue of American Anthropologist. A scanned copy is available here. The author is now working at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University, where he will start work on his Ph.D. in social anthropology and Middle Eastern studies.  “Weblogestan” is an Iranian online slang term for the realm of Persian-language blogs. (The time has definitely come for it to be adapted, and adopted, into Anglophone usage.) Over the last two years, Western journalists have looked at blogging as part of the political and cultural ferment in Iran — treating it, predictably enough, as a simple manifestation of the yearning for a more open society. Doostdar complicates this picture by looking at what we might call the borders of Veblogestan (to employ a closer transliteration of the term, as used specifically to name Iranian blogging). In an unpublished manuscript he sent me last week, Doostdar provides a quick overview of the region’s population: “There are roughly 65,000 active blogs in Veblogestan,” he writes, “making Persian the fourth language for blogs after English, Portugese, and French. The topics for blog entries include everything from personal diaries, expressions of spirituality, and works of experimental poetry and fiction to film criticism, sports commentary, social critique, and of course political analysis. Some bloggers focus on only one of these topics throughout the life of their blogs, while others write about a different topic in every new entry, or even deal with multiple topics within a single entry.”
Scott McLemee , "Travels in Weblogestan," Inside Higher Ed, March 29, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2005/03/29/mclemee 
Bob Jensen's threads on blogs and Weblogs are at http://www.trinity.edu/~rjensen/245glosf.htm#Weblog


New leads on medical causes of some mental illnesses
A growing number of studies are testing theories that viruses and other infectious agents may underlie some cases of psychiatric illnesses. The theory is that viruses and bacteria assaulting the immune system could also end up affecting the brain in such disorders as autism, depression and eating disorders. Once considered marginal, this kind of research is gaining more acceptance in the wider scientific community. Perhaps the greatest strides in this area of research are those linking obsessive-compulsive disorder and bacterial infections. Susan Swedo, a researcher at the National Institute of Mental Health, documented the sudden onset of obsessive-compulsive disorder or Tourette's syndrome in some children who got strep throat. Dr. Swedo, who has numerous studies under way, coined the term PANDAS, or pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections.
Heather Won Tesoriero, "Researchers Probe for Viral Link to Mental Illness:  Studies Examine Whether Bacteria Cause Disorders Such as Autism, Depression, The Wall Street Journal, March 29, 2005; Page D4 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111204806304291201,00.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal


Suicide risk increases on college campuses:  Many students are unaware of help services on campus
The new study — which involved interviews with 1,865 students at four large universities — has been accepted for publication in Suicide and Life Threatening Behavior, the journal of the American Association of Suicidology. The study was conducted by six researchers, led by John S. Westefeld, a professor of counseling psychology at the University of Iowa. The article says that its data suggest that suicide attempts on campuses are increasing and that “this is one of the most significant findings of this study.” But it also notes that “it may be the case that what is occurring is that more students are reporting attempts.” The survey also found that of the students in the sample: 40 percent had known someone who had attempted suicide. 28 percent had known someone who had committed suicide. 24 percent had thought about attempting suicide. 9 percent had made a suicide threat. While the universities in the survey — and colleges generally — have many services for students who are depressed or suicidal, the study noted an “alarming” statistic: Only 26 percent of students were aware of the services available.
Scott Jaschik, "Suicide Risk," Inside Higher Ed, March 29, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/03/29/suicide


What you should know about fresh spinach:  Chances are there's more nourishment in frozen spinach
The sooner you eat that fresh spinach in your refrigerator, the better. In fact, if you aren't going to cook fresh spinach promptly, you might want to consider frozen or canned spinach as an alternative, researchers suggest. Fresh from the ground, spinach is packed with healthy nutrients, including folate -- a B vitamin that helps prevent the birth defect spina bifida -- and carotenoids, a form of vitamin A that's needed for development and may also protect against blindness and cancer. But these healthy nutrients don't stick around for long. In your refrigerator, spinach loses about half of these healthy nutrients after eight days. This happens even faster if stored above the normal 40-degree refrigerator temperature. Keep fresh spinach cool and minimize storage time. Consider canned and frozen spinach as other options if you can't eat it soon after buying it.
Michael W. Smith, "Get the Most Out of Your Spinach," WebMD --- http://my.webmd.com/content/article/102/106767.htm?z=1728_00000_1000_td_01 


What's a college degree worth on average?
The Census Bureau always releases salary data along with the statistics on educational attainment, as a way to draw attention to the financial value of education. Average salaries of workers 18 and older area as follows:
No high school degree: $18,734
High school diploma as highest degree: $27,915
Bachelor’s degree: $51,206
Advanced degree: $74,602

Scott Jaschik, "How Educated We Are," Inside Higher Ed, March 29, 2005 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2005/03/29/census
Jensen Comment:  The above article gives a state-by-state comparison of higher education degrees among 50 states.


Time for long pants laddie
Scottish politicians are angry at the University of Cambridge for its policy of barring students from wearing kilts when they graduate. The BBC reports that pressure is growing on the university to be more flexible.   . . . But the Scottish National Party's Mike Weir will table a motion urging a rethink on the "elitist" ban. The university said that graduation regulations had always stressed trousers and ties for men and dresses or suits for women should be worn. I am confident that they will be forced to back down Mike Weir SNP MP The decision to ban national dress, including kilts and army uniforms, came as more and more people took to wearing them. "Rethink call over Cambridge kilts," BBC News, March 28, 2005 --- http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/4386595.stm


He didn't say what you have to pray for while keeping thoughts of him in your prayers
A school board member and prominent lawyer has been accused of offering legal services in exchange for sexual favors. Steven C. Copenhaver, 56, was released from jail Thursday on a $750 bond. An arrest affidavit said Copenhaver offered to represent a woman's husband if she and her sister-in-law would perform sex acts with him and each other. "I am deeply apologetic to my family and friends," Copenhaver said in a statement Thursday. "I hope that all of them will support me during this difficult time. I intend to work through the legal process to get this behind me as soon as possible. Please keep me in your prayers."
"Lawyer Will Take Sex in Lieu of Fees," Fox News, March 29, 2005 --- http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,151742,00.html
Jensen Comment:  Bartering is somewhat common but taxable.  I wonder if he would've reported on his tax return?


How the West leads the fight against itself
The principal motive for the rise of fundamentalisms in recent decades - Islamic, Christian and Jewish - is a reaction against modernity. That is Western modernity, which combines the material progress that has been generated by capitalist industrialisation and the humanist culture that framed it. The provocation has been the nihilistic consequences of humanism. A movement that started in the Renaissance with the ambition of founding a human-centred view of existence, to replace the religious one that had preceded it, failed to find its own answer to the great metaphysical questions that confront all humans: where do I come from, what should I do with my life, and what happens to me at death. The philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche proposed that with the "death of God" the truth about existence has become that life is either absurd or horrible. He satirised the modern individual as the "last man", whose only interest in life is his digestion; that is, comfort. Nietzsche's bleak view has been projected ever since in countless works of literature, art and music, depicting the human condition as meaningless and depressive - Hamlet's "sterile promontory". The theme also emerged that if death has no sense - merely a biological event ending in rot and stink - then neither does life. Nihilism - the belief that there is nothing - is the inevitable end point of the humanist cultural experiment. Needless to say, humans cannot live with the ultimate conclusion that this is all there is. So humanist modernity has generated a range of reactions against itself. Fundamentalism is one. From believing in nothing there is a leap to the opposite - fanatical attachment to a body of doctrine that is claimed to be absolute and universal, the word of God himself, spoken directly through one or other of his chosen prophets. Sigmund Freud would have included this reaction under his psychological category of "negation" - where fear that I believe nothing surfaces as its opposite, dogmatic assertiveness that I know the one Truth. And it is the case that people who deeply know what they know are usually relaxed in themselves, feeling no need to assert their faith. The need to convince others cloaks a need to convince oneself. It is insecurity about belief that triggers intolerant dogma, as defence. Fundamentalism is a symptom of fragile faith.
John Carroll, "How the West leads the fight against itself," Sydney Morning Herald, March 28, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/03/27/1111862254583.html 
John Carroll is professor of sociology at La Trobe University. This article was originally published in the Griffith Review: The Lure of Fundamentalism (ABC Books).


Should the world banking system be denied to the poor in the name of environmental protection?  Who should make these decisions?  This is a tough question that liberals and conservatives must address.  At the moment, world bankers under siege by the greens are not lending capital to some third world development projects.
What makes the stakes so high is that banking giants Citigroup and Bank of America have already caved in to RAN (
Rainforest Action Network), following a similar poster assault near the home of Citigroup Chairman Sanford Weill in 2004. If J.P. Morgan Chase joins these capitulating capitalists, then that means the three largest financial services companies —­ thus, virtually an entire industry — will have ceded control of a portion of their businesses to anti-business activists and turned their backs on many in the developing world . . .  “The local ‘tribal people,’ however, don’t appear to appreciate her intervention,” wrote Driessen in his book Eco-Imperialism: Green Power, Black Death. “One resident angrily called the activists’ handiwork ‘a crime against humanity,’ because the project would have provided electricity for 5,000 villages; low-cost renewable power for industries and sewage treatment plants; irrigation water for crops; and clean water for 35 million people.” People in the third world need economic development. It’s the only truly sustainable solution for them — and access to the financial services necessary for economic development is largely in the hands of lenders like J.P. Morgan Chase, with $1 trillion in assets and operations in 50 countries. Appeasing RAN would be an unconscionable and socially irresponsible business decision for J.P. Morgan Chase to make and would amount to a shameful betrayal of the millions who look to this nation and its lenders for hope.
Steven Milloy, "Bank Must Take Stand for Third World," Fox News, March 28, 2005 --- http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,151446,00.html
Jensen Comment:  Of course the bottom line is how responsible the borrowers are in the use of the development funds.  The track records in lesser-developed countries are not good to date.


Mixing drugs may be bad for blood pressure
The Celebrex label doesn't warn of a drug-interaction risk with calcium channel blockers, which are a type of drug used to treat blood pressure and certain heart conditions. It's possible that you are referring to another category of blood-pressure drugs, commonly called ACE inhibitors. Celebrex has been shown to reduce the effectiveness of ACE inhibitors, so patients are warned not to mix the two. In addition, many patients with high blood pressure aren't aware that drugs like Celebrex, which fall into the category of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDS, can affect blood pressure, so anyone being treated for high blood pressure should talk to their doctor before taking Celebrex or even over-the-counter drugs like Motrin or Advil. And because recent studies have implicated the drugs Vioxx and Celebrex in increasing risk for certain heart problems, many doctors now suggest patients with a history of heart disease, heart attack or angina -- many of whom may be taking calcium channel blockers -- limit their use of Celebrex and other anti-inflammatory drugs.
 Tara Parker-Pope, "Health Mailbox," The Wall Street Journal, March 29, 2005; Page D3 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB111205159217991289,00.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal


Can you believe this?  Why not just rig the election like he has the power and wealth to do so?
President doles out expensive computers as he campaigns around the country, in clear violation of electoral rules. President Robert Mugabe is campaigning across the length and breadth of Zimbabwe accompanied by three Air Force helicopters packed with more than 100 million US dollars worth of state-of-the-art Hewlett Packard laptop computers. Depending on the size of the community, the president doles out between ten and one hundred computers at each stop on the election trail. Schools are the main beneficiaries - many of which have been without electricity, textbooks and even roofs for many years. The money to buy the computers - enough to have imported nearly a million tonnes of staple maize for a country experiencing widespread crop failure and hunger - and to fuel the helicopters has come from state coffers in a clear violation of electoral rules forbidding competing parties from using government funds to contest elections.
Chipo Sithole, "Mugabe Woos Voters with Laptops," Institute for War & Peace Reporting (London), March 28, 2005 --- http://allafrica.com/stories/printable/200503281056.html
Jensen Comment:  How can recipients without electricity use the computers?  They can't even recharge the batteries.

Ghost voters in the sky
David Stevens, a white farmer, was shot in the back of the head. The men were among the first to die as President Mugabe’s reign of terror unrolled five years ago. But their names are still on the voters’ roll. Supporters of the Opposition Movement for Democratic Change say that up to a million phantom voters may appear on the register and that “ghost voters” will be used by the ruling Zanu (PF) party to inflate the votes that it receives...
Jan Raath, "Ghost voters, rigged ballots and food bribes - the Mugabe route to power," TimesOnLine, March 29, 2005 --- http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-1545637,00.html


The Scalia Court:  It's all constitutional
In this week’s issue (March 28, 2005), Margaret Talbot profiles the Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Here, she talks to The New Yorker’s Amy Davidson about Scalia’s legal philosophy, why conservatives love him, and why he makes so many people so angry . . . In part; he’s so polarizing because he is very clear and very adamant about the method of constitutional interpretation that he stands for—originalism—and he has a kind of polemical zeal about making the case for it. He’s really out there on the law-school speaking circuit, making his argument in a forceful way; I was impressed to see how willing he is to take hostile questions and engage with people. He’s also quite funny. The other Justices tend to give pretty anodyne speeches—talking about their upbringings, or telling inspirational or educational stories about the great justices and cases of the past. But Scalia is laying out his approach and telling you in no uncertain terms how dangerous it is for American democracy and the American Constitution if judges don’t follow it. Also, his dissents, which are frequent, are notoriously caustic. He’ll use words like “preposterous” and “irrational” to describe what he sees as the wrongheaded thinking of his colleagues.

Amy Davidson, "The Scalia Court," The New Yorker, March 21, 2005 --- http://www.newyorker.com/online/content/articles/050328on_onlineonly01


College graduates are back in demand
While campus recruiting has not yet returned to pre-2001 levels, college grads are back in demand. More than 80 percent of the employers surveyed by NACE rated the job market for new college grads as good, very good, or excellent, and the outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas says the nearly 1.4 million students graduating this spring can expect the strongest entry-level job market in the past three years. "Recruiters have been coming to campus and just going through the motions, but now they actually have jobs to offer," says Larry Routh, director of career services at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The number of recruiters at UNL's February job fair jumped from 139 last year to 175 this year.
Alex Kingsbury, U.S. News, March 21, 2005 --- http://www.usnews.com/usnews/edu/articles/050321/21college.htm 

Surge in accounting undergraduates coupled with a 17-year low in the number of new accounting professors
Here are some numbers that don't appear to add up. Even as the accounting profession has endured a torrent of negative publicity, more college students are enrolling in accounting programs.  The enrollments are so strong that some universities face a problem: a shortage of professors to teach these young bean-counters . . . However, the comeback of the accounting career occurs as the number of business doctorates produced is at a 17-year low and universities struggle to recruit new accounting professors. That leaves many wondering who will be left to teach all the new rules and regulations to the growing student pool. While many academic fields are suffering from professor shortages, the issue is more acute in accounting because of the pull toward high-paying public-accounting jobs.
Diya Gullapalli, "Interest In Accounting Doesn't Seem to Add Up," The Wall Street Journal --- http://www.collegejournal.com/salarydata/accounting/20040802-gullapalli.html 


The Born-Again Individualist:  Fox News Channel’s Judge Andrew Napolitano on lying cops, out-of-control government, and his bestselling new book, Constitutional Chaos

Say what?  Who could imagine on Fox Network?
As the highly rated home to the likes of Abu Ghraib apologist Sean Hannity and the document-shredding constitutional scholar Oliver North, the Fox News Channel is about the last place you think of when it comes to quaint values such as due process, defendants’ rights, and restrained government. Yet Fox is home to television’s fiercest defender of civil liberties, Judge Andrew Napolitano, the network’s senior judicial analyst and a regular on The Big Story With John Gibson, Fox and Friends, The O’Reilly Factor, and other programs. The 54-year-old Napolitano, the youngest life-tenured Superior Court judge in New Jersey history, is an eloquent and outspoken critic of government abuse of power, whether the topic is widespread “testilying” by cops, eminent domain abuse by local and state officials, or the unilateral detention of suspects at Guantanamo Bay.
New Jersey's Superior Court Judge Judge Andrew Napolitano as interviewed by Nick Gillespie, "The Born-Again Individualist," ReasonOnLine, March 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/0503/fe.ng.the.shtml


Here's to you Mrs. Robinson:  Who perhaps lies gaga in a nursing home
Ever since Elaine fled the altar, leapt aboard a bus and rode off into the sunset with Benjamin nearly 40 years ago, fans of The Graduate have been asking one question: what happened next? Plans for a sequel to the film - starring Dustin Hoffman, Katharine Ross and Anne Bancroft as the predatory Mrs Robinson - have become part of Hollywood mythology. Now the speculation can finally be put to rest: the sequel has been written. Home School picks up the narrative several years later. Benjamin is now a father who, scarred by his own education, decides to teach his children at home. He has not, however, entirely escaped his past, as the seductive spectre of Mrs Robinson looms once again. But the agonising wait is not over for devotees yet. Charles Webb, who wrote The Graduate in 1963, has declared that Home School, which he completed two months ago, will not be published until after his death. He explained that when he sold the film rights for The Graduate , a contract clause stated he also signed away the rights to its characters, meaning that any follow-up could be turned into a film without his consent. He claims he offered to work with the rights owner, the French media company Canal Plus, on a big-screen version of Home School but was rebuffed, so he now intends to leave the novel to his sons in his will.
David Smith, "What happened next? (the author will let you know after he dies)," Guardian, March 27, 2005 --- http://books.guardian.co.uk/news/articles/0,6109,1446288,00.html


Americans, when permitted to choose, still honor the free expression of moral diversity
To the extent that new biotechnologies need regulation, agencies should be limited to deciding, as they have traditionally done, only questions about safety and efficacy. Regulatory agencies also have an important role in protecting research subjects and patients from force and fraud by imposing informed consent requirements on researchers. But when people of good will deeply disagree on moral issues that don't involve the prevention of force or fraud, it is not appropriate to submit their disagreement to a panel of political appointees. The genius of a liberal society is that its citizens have wide scope to pursue their own visions of the good without excessive hindrance by their fellow citizens. As the Johns Hopkins report shows, Americans, when permitted to choose, still honor the free expression of moral diversity.
Ronald Bailey, "Whose Biotech Is It, Anyway? Americans reject moral micromanagement of lifesaving innovations," ReasonOnLine, March 16, 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/rb/rb031605.shtml


Women's success is when it isn't newsworthy
Neither thinks the job is done. "Let's face it. We live in a society that loves to discriminate," Mr. Correll said. Ms. Mulcahy added, "I won't declare victory until there are no lists of high-ranking women, no dinners honoring companies for promoting them and no reporters thinking that a woman's success is such a big deal." Ouch. Claudia H. Deutsch.
"Why Word Guys Avoid Numbers," The New York Times, March 27, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/27/business/yourmoney/27suits.html 


A phenomenon marketers call "think pink"
It's happening in America, where some companies are successfully tapping into the psychology of their female customers.  For example, Nike brings mothers together so they can go jogging together. Jane, a popular magazine for young women, is bringing its content alive by organising book readings, concerts and chat-show-style formats for its readers.  These companies are effectively tapping into a broader social need for "get-togethers" or, in its broadest sense, "friendship", a trend Heath and other researchers predict will strengthen in Australia.  "There is still that close network of girlfriends that women rely on but that greater support they used to get through community and clubs is not there," Heath says. "But that need has not gone away. This is going to be a huge opportunity for brands."  She also predicts a rise in products and services that play up the feminine, a phenomenon marketers call "think pink". Heath cites the return of the white wedding and the growing popularity of bridal magazines and the girly brand Hello Kitty as evidence. The latest ad for Bonds has girls in floral underwear dancing among the trees, a far cry from Sarah O'Hare dressed in a chesty singlet working a garbage truck.  "Five years ago marketers were running a million miles away from anything feminine or girly as it was seen as condescending to the power woman," Heath says.  The increase in activities such as knitting and scrapbooking is cited as further evidence. Scrapbooking Memories - Australia's leading scrapbooking magazine (there's more than one) reported a 44 per cent increase in circulation to 22,457 sales a month.  "Everything that grandma did is cool. It's not doilies but crocheting iPod covers. There is a desire to do things with your hands.  "Women are turning off the click-point culture of technology and wanting to create things."
"I am woman, hear me," Sydney Morning Herald, March 28, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/03/27/1111862252594.html?oneclick=true


They will find her analysis of individual poems quite taxing enough in its upper reaches.
Clearly designed as a come-on for bright students who don't yet know very much about poetry, Camille Paglia's new book anthologizes 43 short works in verse from Shakespeare through to Joni Mitchell, with an essay about each. The essays do quite a lot of elementary explaining. Readers who think they already know something of the subject, however, would be rash if they gave her low marks just for spelling things out. Even they, if they were honest enough to admit it, might need help with the occasional Latin phrase, and they will find her analysis of individual poems quite taxing enough in its upper reaches. ''Having had his epiphany,'' she says of the sonnet ''Composed Upon Westminster Bridge,'' ''Wordsworth moves on, preserving his solitude and estrangement by shutting down his expanded perception.'' Nothing elementary about that.
Clive James, "'Break, Blow, Burn': Well Versed," The New York Times, March 27, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/27/books/review/027JAMESL.htm 


US has a moral obligation to enforce it.
His assertion seems to differ from the mantra-like statement repeated by those who oppose the US meddling in the region's affairs, especially following the unofficial introduction of the US-drafted Greater Middle East Initiative.  Danielle Pletka, the vice-president of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), advocates a contrary opinion. She tells Aljazeera.net that political reform in the Middle East is not only unavoidable, but that the US has a moral obligation to enforce it. Otherwise, she argues, it would not be fair to the rest of the Arab and Muslim world.
"In pursuit of Arab reform," Aljazeera, May 20, 2004 --- http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/967715B8-276C-4708-AC08-7FD102E13BA7.htm 

US gets credit for the start of it
In fact, several countries have seen nonviolent Arab movements for liberty and self-government recently, but there's only one where there's no doubt the protests are a consequence of the American invasion of Iraq. That revolt happened under circumstances that should give pause to hawks and doves alike: It's the movement in Iraq, led by the Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, that culminated in January's elections.

Jese Walker, "Behind the Cedars Nonviolent protest in the Middle East," ReasonOnLine, March 8, 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/links/links030805.shtml


See the U.S. News service ways for finding college financial aid --- http://www.usnews.com/usnews/edu/articles/040906/6stories.h.htm 
Bob Jensen's threads on financial aid are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm#EducationInGeneral 


Job Insecurity, From the Chief Down
The Fortune 500 have been downsizing for about 30 years now, and they've been outsourcing. As they've done that, smaller and midsize firms have been growing much more rapidly.  The result is a much more flexible labor force, one that can take the body blow of change. It's not as rigid as Europe's labor force. That's beautiful in economic terms, but what it means for individuals is that more people are working in conditions in which they could be more easily fired. And they're working with a lot less of a safety net in terms of benefits and retirement.
Diane C. Swonk as quoted by William J. Holstein in "Job Insecurity, From the Chief Down," The New York Times, March 27, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/27/business/yourmoney/27advic.html 
Jensen Comment:  But the difference is that the chief gets an undeserved golden parachute.


These are the same individual given headlines about their philanthropy
The world's richest individuals have placed $11.5 trillion of assets in offshore havens, mainly as a tax avoidance measure. The shock new figure - 10 times Britain's GDP - is contained in the most authoritative study of the wealth held in offshore accounts ever conducted. The study, by Tax Justice Network, a group of accountants and economists concerned at the escalating wealth held in offshore locations, shows that the world's high-net-worth individuals earn $860 billion each year from their assets.
Nick Mathiason, "Super-rich hide trillions offshore," Guardian, March 27, 2005 --- http://observer.guardian.co.uk/business/story/0,6903,1446120,00.html 


Tracing the origins of Homo Economicus
The outline of yet another stage in human economic development - post-industrial society - slowly emerged in the last part of the 20th century. In a post-industrial society, manufacturing gives way to the provision of services.  The post-industrial economy requires even less land and, in some respects, labour than its industrial predecessor. While the new regime requires at least as much physical capital as the old one, its appetite for knowledge input, mainly in the form of technological innovation, is ravenous.  "The Western world did not arrive at such an agreeable state overnight," Bernstein concludes. "It took most of the second millennium to correct feudalism's suppression of property rights, throw off the intellectual stranglehold of the Church, overcome the lack of capital markets and rectify the absence of effective transport and communication. "Only with the completion of these four tasks have citizens of the new industrial and post-industrial societies been able to enjoy the fruits of their labours."
Ross Gittins, "Tracing the origins of Homo Economicus," Sydney Morning Herald, March 28, 2005 --- http://www.smh.com.au/text/articles/2005/03/27/1111862253511.html
This is a review of a book entitled The Birth of Plenty, by William Bernstein (McGraw-Hill, 2004).


Now may we have a similar device for MTV, CNN, QVC, and NBC?
This device blocks the reception of the Fox News Channel.  E-mail article Print view Search Most e-mailed Most read RSS It's not that Sam Kimery objects to the views expressed on Fox News Channel. The creator of the "Fox Blocker" contends the network is not news at all.  Kimery says he has sold about 100 of the little silver bits of metal that screw into the back of most televisions, allowing people to filter Fox News from their sets. The Tulsa, Okla., resident also has received thousands of e-mails, both angry and complimentary, as well as a few death threats since the device debuted in August.
Emily Fredrix, "Device lets you out-Fox your TV," Seattle Times, March 27, 2005 --- http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2002220590_foxblocker26.html?syndication=rss 


The French invented their own device for tuning out the rest of Europe and Vice Versa
We should spare a sympathetic thought this Easter for Jacques Chirac. The French president is facing several unpleasant facts. One of these is that the EU is no longer a projection of France, or a vehicle for enlarging French influence in the world. The addition of new members has diluted not only French voting power, but French influence. Not only is French no longer the main language of the EU at official level, but French policy no longer prevails as it once did.  In a recent speech M Chirac railed against ‘ultra-liberalism’ as “the communism of our age.” His problem is not that globalization threatens French farmers and manufacturers with cheaper goods from China and India, but that the new Eastern EU members threaten them from inside the EU. The barbarians are already inside the gates.  The EU Services Directive, the target for much of his apoplexy, offers the prospect of a vast internal EU market in services as well as goods, pretty much as was intended and promised. France, backed by Germany, both with unemployment levels in excess of 10%, is alarmed at the prospect of Polish plumbers and architects competing with French ones. M Chirac claims to have had the directive withdrawn, but Tony Blair disputes this, and points out that qualified majority voting will decide it, with unanimity not needed.
Madsen Pirie, "Barbaians Inside the Gates," Adam Smith Institute, March 27, 2005 ---  http://www.adamsmith.org/blog/archives/001149.php  


The French have one thing going for them --- lots of nuclear power supply.  Such is not the case in the U.S.
Your typical city dweller doesn’t know just how much coal and uranium he burns each year. On Lake Shore Drive in Chicago—where the numbers are fairly representative of urban America as a whole—the answer is (roughly): four tons and a few ounces. In round numbers, tons of coal generate about half of the typical city’s electric power; ounces of uranium, about 17 percent; natural gas and hydro take care of the rest. New York is a bit different: an apartment dweller on the Upper West Side substitutes two tons of oil (or the equivalent in natural gas) for Chicago’s four tons of coal. The oil-tons get burned at plants like the huge oil/gas unit in Astoria, Queens. The uranium ounces get split at Indian Point in Westchester, 35 miles north of the city, as well as at the Ginna, Fitzpatrick, and Nine Mile Point units upstate, and at additional plants in Connecticut, New Jersey, and New Hampshire.  That’s the stunning thing about nuclear power: tiny quantities of raw material can do so much. A bundle of enriched-uranium fuel-rods that could fit into a two-bedroom apartment in Hell’s Kitchen would power the city for a year: furnaces, espresso machines, subways, streetlights, stock tickers, Times Square, everything—even our cars and taxis, if we could conveniently plug them into the grid. True, you don’t want to stack fuel rods in midtown Manhattan; you don’t in fact want to stack them casually on top of one another anywhere. But in suitable reactors, situated, say, 50 miles from the city on a few hundred acres of suitably fortified and well-guarded real estate, two rooms’ worth of fuel could electrify it all.
Peter W. Huber, Mark P. Mills, "Why the U.S. Needs More Nuclear Power," City Journal, Winter 2005 --- http://www.city-journal.org/html/15_1_nuclear_power.html 


Bomb under some of the most cherished tenets of the environmental movement
Every now and then comes along a book that throws a searchlight beam on the nonsense and iniquities of the age. Such was Le Fanu's account of the state of decline of scientific medicine in 2000. Now a highly authoritative book has appeared that puts a bomb under some of the most cherished tenets of the environmental movement. It is by a retired professor of organic chemistry from Wrocław. In telling the true story of a family of organic compounds, it exposes the chicanery, mendacity and sheer callous inhumanity of the quasi-religious orthodoxy that has seized control of the media and the political stage across the world.  It is destined to be ignored by officialdom, but all adherents of science and its methods should feel duty bound to read it and shout about it.
"Number of the Month," Number Watch, March 2005 --- http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/2005%20March.htm 


What constitutes fair use?
Google is being sued by a French news agency for infringing on copyright material in its Google News Site. The internet has long been a cause of struggle between the entrenched rights of copyright holders and freedom of information. Some feel that all information on the net should be free, but it is generally acknowledged that most of the content is copyrighted, and therefore subject to copyright laws. The issue then becomes whether a particular use of such material constitutes "fair use". There are many sites that could be affected by the outcome of this lawsuit. 
Globetechnology: AFP lawsuit tests fair use of material by Google
From Jerry Trintes' Blog on March 24, 2004 --- http://www.zorba.ca/blog.html 


File swappers' lament
File Swappers on the internet may want to rethink their position, since Canada may be declaring it illegal in the near future. While this issue is likely to go on for some time, it is likely in the long term that the practice will be recognized for what it is - stealing. Globetechnology: Canada considers file-swap crackdown
From Jerry Trintes' Blog on March 27, 2004 --- http://www.zorba.ca/blog.html 


The website also features articles with religious messages
In a court hearing today, the American Civil Liberties Union asked a U.S. District Court in Louisiana to find the Governor’s Program on Abstinence in contempt of a 2002 order requiring it to keep religion out of the taxpayer-funded sex education program . . . As the ACLU said in court papers filed in January, the governor’s program continues to feature religious materials on its official website, AbstinenceEdu.com. State-appointed experts advise readers, for example, that "abstaining from sex until entering a loving marriage will . . . [make you] really, truly, ‘cool’ in God’s eyes" and that "God is standing beside you the whole way" if you commit to abstinence. The website also features articles with religious messages, including one that states, "God chooses this one sin [sex outside of marriage] above all others as the most destructive to your soul and spirit.
"Reproductive Freedom," ACLU, March 24, 2005 --- http://www.aclu.org/Focus.cfm?ContentStyle=1&num=10 

Jensen Comment:  There is an interesting parallel between the Governor of Louisiana and the President of Harvard.  Both are principal agents of their respective organizations.  I would argue that a principal agent does not have free speech rights enjoyed by persons whose remarks are less like to impact adversely upon the agencies that the principal agent represents.  Larry Summers' remarks carry highly likely implications that he is speaking for Harvard.  The remarks of any state's governor carry highly likely implications that he is speaking for state government.  Although I'm generally not happy with the ACLU, I think the point is well taken in this instance even if the governor started up a personal Website not funded by his/her state.  It would not be controversial if a state governor or the president of a university ran a Website in which there cannot be any association of the Website with the principal agent sponsoring the site such that the agency itself is not directly or indirectly involved.


Four times more likely to have suffered from racism than they were before
Ethnic minorities living in parts of Britain are now four times more likely to have suffered from racism than they were before the last general election, according to one of the most exhaustive studies of race and crime, undertaken by The Observer . Between 2000 and 2004 racist incidents reported to the police in England and Wales - anything from verbal abuse to the most vicious of assaults - rose from 48,000 to 52,700. However, it was the sparsely populated areas, home to the smallest, most isolated minority communities, that witnessed the significant increases. North Wales Constabulary recorded 80 racist incidents in 2000. Last year that jumped to 337, meaning that more than 4 per cent of the region's 6,000 ethnic minorities experienced some form of racial intolerance.
Jay Rayner, "Racist attacks on the rise in rural Britain," Guardian, March 27, 2005 --- http://www.guardian.co.uk/race/story/0,11374,1446272,00.html 


It's not only cruel, it's unhealthy for human consumption
Yet the reality is that factory-farmed chickens come at a much higher cost if you consider the conditions in which they are raised. Broiler chickens are ready for slaughter in 40 to 42 days. The speed with which they are force-fed to reach this high body weight means that birds' hearts and lungs cannot keep up and they frequently die of heart failure when they are only a few weeks old.  Animal welfare charity Compassion in World Farming estimates that up to 88 million broilers die of heart failure in the EU each year. Leg disorders are also common, with 30 per cent of birds limping or severely lame, as are blisters, infections, cannibalism and heat stress.  But it is not just the welfare of the chickens that suffers from cheap production; so does the health of those eating them. Despite the fact that chicken is promoted as low-fat, high-protein food, research last year from the Institute of Brain Chemistry and Human Nutrition at London Metropolitan University found that fat content in chicken has more than doubled since 1940 as a result of factory farming.
"Pain and early death: the true cost of your Easter chicken," Guardian, March 27, 2005 --- http://shopping.guardian.co.uk/ethicalshopping/story/0,11951,1446150,00.html


This is for the birds
The strange case of the homosexual necrophiliac duck pushed out the boundaries of knowledge in a rather improbable way when it was recorded by Dutch researcher Kees Moeliker. It may have ruffled a few feathers, but it earned him the coveted Ig Nobel prize for biology awarded for improbable research, and next week he will be recounting his findings to UK audiences on the Ig Nobel tour.
Don MacLeod, "Necrophilia among ducks ruffles research feathers," Guardian, March 8, 2005 --- http://education.guardian.co.uk/higher/research/story/0,9865,1432991,00.html


Casualties in Russia's culture wars
Culture wars over blasphemous art, such as Andres Serrano's urine-dipped crucifix or Chris Ofili's elephant dung-decorated Madonna, have flared up periodically in the United States in recent years. A similar conflict is now raging in post-Soviet Russia. But there, the debate is not about whether taxpayer money should be used for museum displays that offend some people's religious beliefs. It's about whether a provocative exhibition at a privately owned museum should be a crime with harsh penalties for the accused blasphemers.
Cathy Young, "Religion in Art? Nyet! Casualties in Russia's culture wars," ReasonOnLine, March 23, 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/cy/cy032305.shtml


The neglected significance of California's same-sex marriage ruling
Under California law, Adam may legally marry Eve, but not Steve. Since the difference between what's permitted and what's forbidden is the gender of Adam's prospective partner, reasoned Kramer, the law discriminates according to gender. That the law restricts men and women alike from marrying someone of the same sex, argued Kramer, no more immunizes it from review as an "equally applicable" law than does an anti-miscegenation statute requiring whites and blacks equally to marry someone of the same race. This last argument is the truly interesting one, because it has potential applications outside the marriage context. If state discrimination against gay couples—as opposed to gay individuals, who still have not been ruled to constitute a suspect class—is viewed as gender discrimination subject to strict scrutiny, then the state must supply not merely a "rational basis" for legislation to pass constitutional muster, but rather advance a "compelling state interest" for making a distinction. If the California Supreme Court agrees with that aspect of Kramer's reasoning, it will set a precedent for a far higher level of protection for gay families than they have heretofore enjoyed.
Julian Sanchez, "Protecting Adam and Steve :  The neglected significance of California's same-sex marriage ruling," ReasonOnLine, March 15, 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/links/links031505.shtml

NYC Law versus the Christian Ministries
In May the New York Post reported that the Salvation Army, which has provided social services and Christian ministry to the poor around the world for more than 125 years, could be pulling out of New York City rather than provide health insurance benefits to domestic partners of gay employees, as New York City law may soon require. The legislation, passed in May, would require all businesses and nonprofits that have contracts with the city worth at least $100,000 to provide the benefits.  At this writing, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a moderate and generally pro–gay rights Republican, is suing to block enforcement of the legislation, which is also vehemently opposed by Catholic Charities. (One of Bloomberg’s appointees to the city’s Human Rights Commission, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman, resigned from the commission over the mayor’s position on this issue.)

Cathy Young, "God or Mammon:  When religious groups get caught between their principles and their subsidies," ReasonOnLine, March 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/0503/co.cy.god.shtml


There is no doubt that the six million-euro ransom will soon be put to use killing more Iraqis and Americans (but not Italians since they're going home)
The story - that U.S. troops just suddenly opened up on the one car carrying a just-released journalist and her Italian secret service driver - never made sense. In the absence of any real indication of what happened, the more likely story is that the driver was using evasive driving tactics to skirt U.S. checkpoints and troops. That sort of thing does not go unnoticed by soldiers, not after months in-country. Even less sensible is Sgrena' claim that she was somehow targeted by U.S. troops, yet made it home. The far bigger issue is the attempt to secretly pay ransom for Sgrena' release. There is no doubt that the six million-euro ransom will soon be put to use killing more Iraqis and Americans. Further, it guarantees that more Western hostages will be taken, especially European ones, female if possible. This is not the moral high ground, and the Italian government and Sgrena know it.
"The Six-Million Euro Woman," ReasonOnLine, March 8, 2005 --- http://www.reason.com/re/030805.shtml
Jensen Comment:  Sgrena will rant all the way to the bank where she deposits more than $6 million in book royalties and finding that it pays hard cash to bash America.


Surprise! Surprise!
The wit and wisdom of Mikey Scars emerges in hundreds of pages of FBI reports obtained by the Daily News that recount the history of the Gambino family before, during and after Gotti's volatile reign. In hours of FBI debriefing sessions at secret locations, DiLeonardo said that even with Gotti's power on the wane, the family continued to cast its shadow in some remarkable corners of New York.
Greg B. Smith, "The long tentacles of the mob:  FBI reports offer quite a talen:
NY Daily News, March 27, 2005 --- http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/293764p-251510c.html


Weakness of European shareholder democracy
A new study prepared for the Association of British Insurers (ABI) by Deminor Rating, a Belgian governance consultancy, highlights the weakness of European shareholder democracy. As the chart shows, only two-thirds of the big European firms included in the FTSE Eurofirst 300 index operate a rule of one share, one vote. In the other third of firms, power tends to be concentrated in the hands of a minority of big shareholders who control a majority of the voting rights.
"What shareholder democracy?" Economist, March 23, 2005 ---
http://www.economist.com/business/displayStory.cfm?story_id=3793305


The history of medicine is filled with shameful suppressions of important advances
Americans want to know how good their doctors and hospitals are. But the government does not reward good performance — judged by whether patients get better. It rewards only good conformance — for medical providers who follow its recipes. The government specifies its recipes like the 11th Commandment. But there is no one recipe for medical care. Treatments must be tailored to patients. Are drugs that lower blood pressure really mandatory for all heart failure patients, as the government avers? Doctors who keep blood pressure slightly elevated in their elderly patients' rigid vessels surely don't agree. Further, medicine is the youngest science, with frequent flip-flops in accepted treatment. Yesterday's must-dos, Vioxx and antidepressants, are today's tort lawyer bonanzas. Government recipes are delineated primarily through “peer review,” not scientific experiments. Although the title implies saintly physicians dispassionately evaluating each other's work, medical “peers” become brass-knuckle fighters when innovators threaten their expertise. The history of medicine is filled with shameful suppressions of important advances.
Regina E. Herzlinger, "Uncle Sam is no doctor:  Instead of tracking outcomes, system prescribes medical ‘recipes.', "USA Today, March 29, 2005, Page 10A --- http://www.usatoday.com/printedition/news/20050329/oppose29.art.htm
Jensen Comment:  Regina is a former faculty member of the Harvard Business School


Guess what causes the most bite injuries in the U.K.?  Hint:  It goes woof!
Bizarre accidents including melting pyjamas, being attacked by an alligator and bitten by centipedes put almost 1 million Britons in hospital last year, it emerged today. Volcanic eruptions, lightning strikes, lizard bites and hornet stings caused some of the more unusual injuries listed by the Department of Health (DoH). Accidents cost the NHS about £1bn a year. The most common cause of injury was falling, which led to 119,203 admissions to casualty. Thousands suffered attacks from a wide variety of animals. These included 451 people stung by hornets, 46 bitten by venomous snakes and lizards, 24 bitten by rats, 15 injured in contact with a marine mammal, two people bitten by centipedes and one attacked by an alligator. But dogs accounted for most injuries with 3,508 people suffering bites.
"Brits hurt by melting pyjamas, alligators and centipedes," The Guardian, March 29, 2005 --- http://society.guardian.co.uk/health/story/0,7890,1447436,00.html




Sure wish Erika could wake up like this

An older couple is lying in bed one morning, having just awakened from a good night's sleep. He takes her hand and she responds, "Don't touch me." 

"Why not?" he asks. 

She answers back, "Because I'm dead." 

The husband says, "What are you talking about? 

We're both lying here in bed together and talking to one another." She says, "No, I'm definitely dead." 

He insists, "You're not dead. What in the world makes you think you're dead?" 

"Because I woke up this morning and nothing hurts."




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Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob) http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen
Jesse H. Jones Distinguished Professor of Business Administration
Trinity University, San Antonio, TX 78212-7200
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