Tidbits on September 15, 2014
Bob Jensen at Trinity University

Bob Jensen's Set 4 of Favorite Summertime Flowers --- Sunflowers

 2014 Fall Foliage Map --- http://smokymountains.com/fall-foliage-map/

Tidbits on September 15,, 2014
Bob Jensen

For earlier editions of Tidbits go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.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 past presentations and lectures --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/resume.htm#Presentations   

Bob Jensen's Threads --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm

Bob Jensen's Home Page is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories


Online Video, Slide Shows, and Audio
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

Sci Show (videos on how things work) --- https://www.youtube.com/user/scishow

Watch Louisiana's coastline vanish over 80 years ---

Fans Reconstruct Authentic Version of Star Wars, As It Was Shown in Theaters in 1977 ---

What five classic Disney movies can teach us about personal finance ---

Wisdom in the Age of Information and the Importance of Storytelling in Making Sense of the World: An Animated Essay ---

Robin Williams as an American Flag --- https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q_L1vLv84vs

Kafka’s Parable “Before the Law” Narrated by Orson Welles & Illustrated with Great Pinscreen Art ---

Inside a Russian Billionaire's $300 Million Yacht ---

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

Rock Music Timeline --- http://www.rockmusictimeline.com

100 Great Bass Riffs Played in One Epic Take: Covers 60 Years of Rock, Jazz and R&B ---

NPR's Tiny Desk Concerts --- http://www.npr.org/series/tiny-desk-concerts/

The Arts in Every Classroom Video Library: Teaching Dance --- http://www.learner.org/libraries/artsineveryclassroom/video3.html

Shag Dancing --- http://www.youtube.com/embed/NF80SbicjBE?rel=0

John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme” Played With Bagpipes: The Artistry of Rufus Harley ---

Drums West: Jim Henson’s Animated Tribute to Jazz Drummer Chico Hamilton (1961) ---

Talented 10-year old plays the fiddle & sings live at the Opry ---

Crazy Random Guy Rocks Out in Hardware Store  --- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR0SFVEfXgk&feature=youtu.be

A 56-Song Playlist of Music in Haruki Murakami’s Novels: Ray Charles, Glenn Gould, the Beach Boys & More ---

Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Traffic & Other Bands Play Huge London Festival “Christmas on Earth Continued” (1967) ---

David Bowie and Klaus Nomi’s Hypnotic Performance on SNL (1979) ---

Watch Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Great Helicopter String Quartet, Starring 4 Musicians, 4 Cameras & 4 Copters ---

Sound Effects Genius Michael Winslow Sings Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love”: Vocal & Guitar Parts ---

Web outfits like Pandora, Foneshow, Stitcher, and Slacker broadcast portable and mobile content that makes Sirius look overpriced and stodgy ---

Pandora (my favorite online music station) --- www.pandora.com
(online music site) --- http://www.theradio.com/
Slacker (my second-favorite commercial-free online music site) --- http://www.slacker.com/

Gerald Trites likes this international radio site --- http://www.e-radio.gr/
Songza:  Search for a song or band and play the selection --- http://songza.com/
Also try Jango --- http://www.jango.com/?r=342376581
Sometimes this old guy prefers the jukebox era (just let it play through) --- http://www.tropicalglen.com/
And I listen quite often to Soldiers Radio Live --- http://www.army.mil/fieldband/pages/listening/bandstand.html
Also note
U.S. Army Band recordings --- http://bands.army.mil/music/default.asp

Bob Jensen's threads on nearly all types of free music selections online ---

Photographs and Art

Stanford Archive Presents 178,000 Images Showing the History of the Automobile: From Jags to Gremlins ---

New Flickr Archive Makes Available 2.6 Million Images from Books Published Over a 500 Year Period ---

Glen Gould in Rapture ---

The Planning and Building of Lauinger Library (Georgetown University) ---

Yale Launches an Archive of 170,000 Photographs Documenting the Great Depression ---

46 Incredible Photos You May Not Have Seen Before ---

23 Pictures That Will Make You Want To Visit Scotland ---

German Expressionism Collection at The University of Maryland --- http://lib.guides.umd.edu/germanexpressionism

The Dying Tradition of Sri Lankan Stilt Fishing, Captured in Powerful Photos ---

19 Photos Of The Lençóis Maranhenses, The Most Gorgeous Place In Brazil ---

See What Has Become Of 8 Olympic Host Cities After The Games Left Town ---

Kafka’s Parable “Before the Law” Narrated by Orson Welles & Illustrated with Great Pinscreen Art ---

30 Award-Winning Photos Of Nature Taken By Scientists ---

15 Stunning Portraits Of Exotic Animals Closer Than You've Ever Seen Them Before ---

30 Photos That Will Make You Want To Visit Australia ---

14 Breathtaking Skylines From 'Destiny' Gameplay ---

Chinese Posters --- http://chineseposters.net

The Memory of an Elephant: A Most Unusual Children's Book for Lovers of Mid-Century Modern Design ---

Beijing Through Sidney Gamble’s Camera --- http://sites.duke.edu/sidneygamble

40 maps that explain the Roman Empire ---

MOMA: Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Japanese Art --- http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hi/te_index.asp?i=10

Pictify (paintings, photographs, and scultures) --- http://www.pictify.com/

The Art of Swimming, 1587: A Manual with Woodcut Illustrations ---

The Beatles Saturday Morning Cartoon Show: The Complete 1965-1969 Series ---

The animals that served in the first world war:  in pictures ---

World War I Photographic History in a French Village
Remember Me: The Lost Diggers of Vignacourt --- http://www.awm.gov.au/exhibitions/remember-me/

World War One: The British Library

Centenary of the First World War, 1914-1918 --- http://www.awm.gov.au/1914-1918/

World War (I &II) Propaganda Posters --- http://bir.brandeis.edu/handle/10192/23520

Bob Jensen's threads on history, literature and art ---

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

New Flickr Archive Makes Available 2.6 Million Images from Books Published Over a 500 Year Period ---

Extensive Archive of Avant-Garde & Modernist Magazines (1890-1939) Now Available Online ----

Bill Murray Gives a Delightful Dramatic Reading of Twain’s Huckleberry Finn (1996) ---

The Beatles Saturday Morning Cartoon Show: The Complete 1965-1969 Series ---

Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, And Other Top CEOs Name Their Favorite Books ---

Hear David Foster Wallace Read His Own Essays & Short Fiction on the 6th Anniversary of His Death, ---

The Memory of an Elephant: A Most Unusual Children's Book for Lovers of Mid-Century Modern Design ---

Free Electronic Literature --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm
Free Online Textbooks, Videos, and Tutorials --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm#Textbooks
Free Tutorials in Various Disciplines --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm#Tutorials
Edutainment and Learning Games --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm#Edutainment
Open Sharing Courses --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

Now in Another Tidbits Document
Political Quotations on September 15, 2014

U.S. National Debt Clock --- http://www.usdebtclock.org/
Also see http://www.brillig.com/debt_clock/

Peter G. Peterson Website on Deficit/Debt Solutions ---

GAO: Fiscal Outlook & The Debt --- http://www.gao.gov/fiscal_outlook/overview 

Bob Jensen's threads on entitlements --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Entitlements.htm

Bob Jensen's health care messaging updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Health.htm

2014 American Accounting Association Award Winners ---

Best Note-Taking Apps for Students ---
August 27, 2014

Faculty Focus (teaching tools) ---  http://www.facultyfocus.com/

Aspen Institute: Skills for America's Future ---

Open Library is yours to borrow, read & connect ---
For example, search on the word "Accounting"

One web page for every book ever published. It's a lofty but achievable goal.

To build Open Library, we need hundreds of millions of book records, a wiki interface, and lots of people who are willing to contribute their time and effort to building the site.

To date, we have gathered over 20 million records from a variety of large catalogs as well as single contributions, with more on the way.

Open Library is an open project: the software is open, the data are open, the documentation is open, and we welcome your contribution. Whether you fix a typo, add a book, or write a widget--it's all welcome. We have a small team of fantastic programmers who have accomplished a lot, but we can't do it alone!

Open Library is a project of the non-profit Internet Archive, and has been funded in part by a grant from the California State Library and the Kahle/Austin Foundation.

Bob Jensen's threads on libraries ---

Bob Jensen's threads on free electronic literature ---

Bob Jensen's links on free scholarly downloads in various academic disciplines ---

Turkey Times for Formerly Overstuffed Law Schools
Better Times for MBA Programs
Accounting Profession Holds Steady Despite Turbulent Economy

"Where Are All the Law School Applicants?" by Paul Caron, TaxProf Blog, September 13, 2014 ---

. . .

What is the reason for this dramatic reversal? Conventional wisdom credits two principal factors. First, the legal job market suffered a combined cyclical and structural downturn in 2008. ... The second factor weighing against law school applications is the growing recognition of the burden of student debt. ...

Is this drop in law school enrollment a good or bad thing? One part is arguably good: many young people applied to law school because they had good grades and board scores and wanted to keep their options open, rather than truly thinking through that a legal career was right for them. Now, in contrast, anyone applying to law school has likely given serious thought to the decision.

But the decline is also unfortunate. Unfortunate for the young people who choose not to go to law school, because they are missing what can be incredibly rewarding career. Apart from the studies about the return on investment in a law degree, the career can bring satisfaction and opportunities for growth and career changes that few other paths provide.

Continued in article


"Too Many Attorneys," Dennis Elam's Blog, January 3, 2013 ---

Law School --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_school

"American Bar Association Releases 'Bleak' Jobs Data for 2013 Law School Grads," by Paul Caron, TaxProf Blog, April 10, 2014 ---

Brian Leiter (University of Chicago) : American Legal Education: The First 150 Years ---

"Law Students Sue Their Law Schools for Deceptive Employment Reporting Practices," Gy Paul Caron, TaxProf Blog, March 11, 2014 ---

The Law School Bubble Bursts
"Pop Goes the Law," by Steven J. Harper, Chronicle of Higher Education's Chronicle Review, March 11, 2013 ---


"10 Major Advantages To Owning A Home," by Peter Bennett, MyBankTracker via Business Insider, September 9, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
Not to be overlooked are the hefty transactions costs of first buying the home and later selling the home. There are not many real estate markets left where buyers are assured of profits from short term (flipping) ownership. Owning an empty home that will not sell at greatly lowered prices can be very stressful and costly in terms of property taxes, insurance, etc.

Renting for periods of uncertainty about having to or choosing to relocate is probably a better idea. For example, I generally do not advise new faculty to purchase homes until getting tenure becomes relatively certain (sometimes taking 6-7 years). Location matters. Often couples rent apartments or buy condos before their children are old enough for school. This saves a lot of time and expense of long daily commuting. Those that rent have more flexibility for moving into better public school districts when the time comes to send the kids off to school. Commuting times and ages of children are negatively correlated.

The resale market is not so hot for condos in general except in certain markets such as condos near universities. Some who owned condos near universities may decide to keep them as investments after they move on. A friend who owned a condo near the Dartmouth campus and later moved to another university found that over many years his former Hanover condo has been a great cash cow as an investment. But many people like me do not like being landlords year in and year out.

"On the Road with the World’s Thinnest, Lightest, Hi-Def Second Monitor," by David Pogue, Yahoo Tech, September 11, 2014 ---
Jensen Comment
Also note how a professional writer uses MS Word using a huge monitor.

How to Study and Learn Effectively:  Techniques and Methods ---

"What Twitter Changes Might Mean for Academics," Chronicle of Higher Education, September 8, 2014 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on Tools and Tricks of the Trade --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm

"Everything You Want to Know About the Apple Watch, Except for Everything Apple Refused to Tell Us," by Alyssa Bereznak, Yahoo Tech, September 10, 2014 ---

"Apple’s first smart watch seems like the best of its kind so far, but the user experience is still a little unclear," by Rachel Metz, MIT's Technology Review," September 9, 2014 ---

Apple Watch: Coming to a Classroom Near You? ---

Bob Jensen's threads on Tools and Tricks of the Trade --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm

"Universities With the Most Doctorate Recipients From Minority Groups, by Race and Ethnicity, 5-Year Total for 2008-12," Chronicle of Higher Education, August 18, 2014 ---

Big Drunk on Campus:  America's Top Colleges Have a Serious Drinking Problem ---

A young man leans against a bar. He is bearded and gaunt, radiating hipster vibes. All around him, the club, like so many others on the frayed edges of Manhattan’s Financial District, fills with bankers and lawyers. As evening deepens, things get ever more rowdy, and the young man, who seems lonely, looks ever more so.

But this is not an ordinary night at an ordinary bar. On this rainy spring evening, the M1-5 Lounge has been commandeered by alumni of Dartmouth College (including the writers of this article, who both graduated about a decade ago) for a beer pong tournament, which explains the many young graduates gathered around a half-dozen wooden tables crowded with cups of watery beer. Eventually, after a full six hours, two champions will emerge from this boozy haze. And then everyone will step out into the wet Manhattan night and become responsible adults once again.

Pong is more than a game at Dartmouth; it is a symbol, maybe the symbol of the school. It is a seductive relief valve on a campus where “Work hard, play hard” has become an unofficial motto. It is also a public health pestilence that, critics say, vanquishes both brain cells and intellectualism. Worse yet, it is at least partly responsible for what some say is an epidemic of binge drinking and sexual assault on campus.

Many think this is a national epidemic, a chronic problem we have ignored for a good half-century. If that is true, Dartmouth serves as a case study of what happens when 18-year-olds are suddenly endowed with all the beer and sexual freedom they could possibly want. It is the smallest and most remote of the eight Ivy League schools—respected, well known, the perfect microcosm for what challenges the success of American higher education. Perhaps that’s why it’s been the subject of some brutal headlines over the last year:

Dartmouth in the Glare of Scrutiny on Drinking” (The New York Times);

Dartmouth vows to curb student misbehavior” (The Boston Globe);

How I Became an Alcoholic and Failed Out of Dartmouth” (Business Insider).

Every elite college endures spells of damaging publicity, partly out of public fascination and probably a little envy. The public rightfully expects more from the nation’s best and brightest, so when Harvard students cheat en masse on their exams, a Cornell student dies from fraternity hazing or Yale fraternity pledges celebrate sexual assault with crude chants, the condemnation is swift and merciless. But while other top-ranked schools have transcended their scandals, Dartmouth seems trapped in a keg of sour beer. The problem is that the school’s beloved pong culture is, well, a big part of the problem.

Continued in article

"Pitt Professors Are Wary of Signing Away Intellectual-Property Rights," by Andy Thomason, Chronicle of Higher Education, September 11, 2014 ---

Faculty members at the University of Pittsburgh are skeptical of a directive to “irrevocably assign and transfer to the university” their rights, title, and interest to all intellectual property produced during their employment, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

Administrators say the rule, which also applies to nonclerical staff members, is necessary to keep the university eligible for federal research dollars because of the 2011 Supreme Court decision in Stanford v. Roche. That ruling, according to the university, requires employees to explicitly agree to abide by their institution’s policies.

But Cary Nelson, a former president of the American Association of University Professors, told the Post-Gazette that such a measure was not necessary to procure research funds and that it would violate academic freedom. “Your academic freedom doesn’t end when you create something valuable,” he said. “It extends to how that [research] enters the world.”

The university’s faculty assembly approved a resolution this week asking the administration to delay the September 16 deadline for professors to sign an agreement that they will abide by the policy.

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies are at

Big Iron to Big Aluminum
"Ford Is Making A Huge Bet On An Innovation That Could Transform The Auto Industry ," by Daniel Gross, Slate via Business Insider, September 13, 2014 ---

There’s widespread and justifiable concern over a dearth of great ideas, risky innovation, and progressive advances being produced by corporate America. Apps and widgets don’t have the impact of electricity, steam, or the PC. (Taco Bell’s Biscuit Taco doesn’t count.)

But right now, a storied American corporation is embarking on a huge, all-in, Cortés-burning-the-ships gamble. And it could have a significant impact on the industry that is both America’s largest manufacturing sector and its largest retailing sector: autos.

The company is Ford, which hasn’t gotten nearly enough credit for its remarkable, bailout-avoiding turnaround. (Go read Bryce Hoffman’s book about it, American Icon.) And the gamble involves transforming its highly popular F-150 pickup truck into a vehicle made largely out of aluminum.

When it comes to sustainability, big car companies have been tinkering around the edges in various ways: with a small-batch all-electric car, with hybrids, by improving engines. That’s all to the good. The fleet of cars sold in August got 25.8 miles per gallon, a record. But to really move the needle on emissions and efficiency, you need to produce large numbers of gas guzzlers that rack up lots of miles more efficient. I wrote last week on how Proterra is trying to do this on a small scale with all-electric buses.

In the coming months, however, Ford is set to do it with the F-150. Month in, month out, the F-150 is the best-selling vehicle in the U.S—and has been for the last three decades. In August alone, Ford sold 68,109 F-150s. It has sold nearly 500,000 so far this year. The F-150 by itself accounts for more than 4 percent of all vehicle sales.

The Big Three have been rushing to make pickups more fuel-efficient, in part to comply with incoming fuel standards, and in part to gain a competitive advantage. They’ve had success in small doses. Chrysler sells a diesel-powered Ram that gets 28 miles per gallon on the highway, and some models of the Chevrolet Silverado can get up to 24, according to EPA estimates. But those are niche offerings, accounting for only a small portion of overall sales. Ford is trying to change the game.

The idea of using greater amounts of lightweight aluminum to build cars isn’t exactly new, says Peter Friedman, the self-described “aluminum guy” who manages the manufacturing research department at Ford’s innovation center. Several years ago, as the company looked ahead to how it could keep improving its pickups, it became apparent that making the vehicles lighter was the best option—and the best way to make them lighter would be to swap out steel for aluminum wherever possible.

Ford had used aluminum—which is about one-third as dense than steel—in prototypes, and had owned Jaguar back when it made an aluminum-based model. But switching over entirely would be a long process. There’s plenty of bauxite, the raw material from which aluminum is derived, but the supply capacity to produce huge volumes of automotive aluminum simply didn’t exist in 2010. “The other big part is the changes to our production system,” Friedman says. “We have 100 years or more of making steel vehicles: stamping, framing line, welding a body structure together. Many of these processes had to change.”

The 2015 F-150, the result of these efforts, goes on sale later this year. It will look similar to previous year’s models, only much lighter. The frame is still steel, but the box (the cab, the front end, the bay) is almost all aluminum. That shift alone saves about 450 pounds in weight. Ford is compensating for aluminum’s lower density by making the panels thicker. But there’s more to the story. If the body weighs less, then everything else—the springs, the frame, the engine—can weigh less. The frame, for example, uses 65 fewer pounds of steel. Thanks to this compounding effect, the 2015 F-150 will weigh some 700 pounds less than prior models. (The 2014 version weighs about 5,000 pounds.)

Lower weight translates into higher fuel efficiency: A rule of thumb holds that a 10 percent reduction in weight leads to a 3 percent increase in fuel economy, assuming nothing else changes. But there are bigger gains to be had.

Thanks to the lower weight, these trucks can generate a higher level of pulling power with a smaller, more efficient engine. In the past few years, Ford has already integrated its EcoBoost engine (which was funded in part by a $5.9 billion Department of Energy loan) into the F-150.

In August about 45 percent of the F-150s sold had 3.5-liter EcoBoost engines. For 2015, Ford will offer as an option a more efficient 2.7-liter EcoBoost with start-stop technology, which shuts off the engine while in neutral.

Combined, the materials and the smaller engines can make a big difference. Ford isn’t making concrete promises about mileage yet, and the EPA has yet to weigh in. But analysts are projecting that the F-150 could get up to 27 or 28 miles per gallon on the highway, a significant increase from the 21 or 22 miles per gallon that 2014 F-150s get.

Beyond the prospect of a huge increase in gas mileage, several things are noteworthy about this effort. First, these are work vehicles. And Ford is promising that the aluminum pickups will be just as tough, durable, and able to pull loads as the steel-based ones they’re replacing, all without corroding or rusting.

Second, unlike hybrids or the Tesla, the F-150 isn’t a premium product aimed at the high end of the market. The basic F-150 XL will have a base price of $25,420 in 2015, only $395 more than the 2014 version, or an increase of just 1.6 percent. The 2.7-liter EcoBoost engine costs an extra $495.

Third, beyond avoiding the use of millions of gallons of gasoline, an aluminum pickup truck can make other meaningful contributions to sustainability. Compared with steel, aluminum can more easily be recycled and reused.

Fourth, there’s the question of scale. Ford has chosen to go aluminum on all versions of its highest-selling product, which is made at the River Rouge plant in Michigan and a second plant in Kansas City. This is not a test. “We have stopped production of the steel vehicle at the Rouge, and won’t make it again,” Friedman says.

Read more: http://www.slate.com/articles/business/the_juice/2014/09/ford_f_150_pickup_truck_the_auto_company_is_gambling_on_aluminum.html#ixzz3DHm3HBzL


How are the enormous financial risks of such a "sinking of the ships" disclosed?


Is Columbia University negligent on investigating three rapes by the same alleged perpetrator?
One of the victims carries her mattress around the campus.

There are at least four victims of this one Columbia University rapist (this is unbelievable) ---
"23 Students File Complaint Against Columbia for Mishandling Rape," by llie Beusman, jezebel ---

Jensen Comment
My question is why the NY Police have not acted on this serial rapist?

"1 in 5 U.S. Women Are Raped at Some Point, Report Says," by Justin Worland, Time Magazine, September 5, 2014 ---

About one in five women in the United States are raped during their life, according to data released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control. And another 40% experience another form of sexual violence.

“Although progress has been made in efforts to prevent sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence, these forms of violence continue to exact a substantial toll upon U.S. adults,” the CDC study said.

The problem of sexual violence is particularly acute at younger ages. More than half of female victims said they were violated before they reached age 25. This finding is consistent with a UNICEF report released Thursday that suggests that one in 10 girls worldwide is raped before age 20.

The CDC recommended a number of steps to combat sexual violence, including trying to change societal expectations and promoting safe relationships.

“The early promotion of healthy relationships while behaviors are still relatively modifiable makes it more likely that young persons can avoid violence in their relationships,” the report said

NCAA --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Collegiate_Athletic_Association

. . .

Division history

See also: List of NCAA Division I institutions, List of NCAA Division II institutions, List of NCAA Division III institutions and List of Division I Athletic Directors
Years Division
1906–1955 None
1956–1972 NCAA University Division (Major College), College Division (Small College)
1973–present NCAA Division I, Division II, Division III
1978–2006 NCAA Division I-A, NCAA Division I-AA (Division I football only), Division II, Division III
2006–present NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision, Division I Football Championship Subdivision (Division I football only), Division II, Division III


Game Changer:  Can Athletics be Saved in Universities Providing Athletics Scholarships?
by Mike Antonucci and Kevin Cool
Stanford Magazine
September 2014


Jensen Comment
Among the Division I teams of the NCAA there are extremes ranging from Ivy League universities like Columbia University that, to my knowledge, never strives to be in the Top 10 in most, if any, sports versus Stanford, USC, UCLA, Notre Dame, and others that strive to be in the Top 10 both in academics and athletics of all types. Then there are prestigious universities like the University of Chicago in Division III where no athletic scholarships are given apart from academic scholarships ---

Recent events described in the above article are forcing Division I universities to completely rethink their missions in athletics, including the mission of revenues that that can be enormous in some sports like football and basketball --- largely due to television contracts.

Should Stanford University remain in big-money athletics or drop down to Ivy League-Level athletics or drop further down by dropping out of Division I altogether?

Here Are The Chances An Internship Lands You A Job In Your Industry ---

. . .

From our reading of 2013 data from LinkedIn, here's the percentage of internships that lead to jobs in the following industries:

• Accounting: 60% 
• Oil & energy: 33%
• Investment banking: 31%
• PR & communications: 28%
• Law practice: 26%
• Apparel & fashion: 25%
• Hospitality: 24%
• Government administration: 23%
• Publishing: 22%
• Museums: 21%
• International affairs: 20%
• NGO management: 19%

The task, of course, is landing those gigs in the first place. We got you covered: here are our guides to nabbing a Google or Wall Street internship. 

Read more:

2009 Best Places to Start/Intern According to Bloomberg/Business Week --- Click Here
Also see the Internship and Table links at http://www.businessweek.com/careers/special_reports/20091211best_places_for_interns.htm
The Top five rankings contain all Big Four accountancy firms.
Somehow Proctor and Gamble slipped into Rank 4 above PwC
The accountancy firms of Grant Thornton and RMS McGladrey make the top 40 at ranks 32 and 33 respectively.

Best Places to Intern --- http://www.businessweek.com/managing/content/dec2009/ca2009129_394659.htm?link_position=link1
I'm waiting for Francine to throw cold water on the "ever before" claim
Especially note the KPMG Experience Abroad module below
"Best Places to Intern:  Bloomberg BusinessWeek's 2009 list shows employers are hiring more interns to fill entry-level positions than ever before,"  by Lindsey Gerdes, Business Week, December 10, 2009 ---

How valuable is a summer internship in a recession? Consider Goldman Sachs, the leading choice for students interested in a career on Wall Street. This year, the investment bank hired 600 fewer entry-level employees. That's not surprising given the stunted economy and the government bailout of banks. What is noteworthy is nearly 90% of Goldman's new hires were former interns. The previous year, Goldman wasn't as concerned about hiring a high percentage of students it had already invested time and money to trainonly 58% of entry-level hires had spent a summer at the company.

The same is true for other employers. KPMG, a Big Four accounting firm that finds itself in tight competition with Deloitte, Ernst & Young, and PricewaterhouseCoopers, hired nearly 900 fewer entry-level employees this year. But 91% of those full-time hires were former interns, whereas only 71% of new hires in 2008 were interns.

Internships have long been seen as a primary recruiting tool at many top employers—a 10-week job tryout to see who would be the best fit for full-time employment. But with full-time hiring down, even the largest employers are trying to maximize the investment they've made in interns by hiring a larger percentage to fill entry-level position than ever before. "It's true for all years, but I think it's even more so in years like this," says Sandra Hurse, a senior executive at Goldman who handles campus recruiting.

Evaluating Employers

With this ranking, Bloomberg BusinessWeek has put together its third annual guide to the best internships, providing information on the number of interns each company recruits, how many are offered full-time jobs, the number of interns expected to be hired next year, even the salaries students receive.To compile our list, we judged employers based on survey data from 60 career services directors around the country and a separate survey completed by each employer.We also consider how each employer fared in the annual Best Places to Launch a Career, our ranking of top U.S. entry-level employers released in September of each year.

Our ranking of the best U.S.companies for undergraduate internships highlights employers who have put together an outstanding experience for students.Accounting firm Deloitte tops our list, followed by rivals KPMG (No.2) and Ernst & Young (No.3).The last of the Big Four accounting companies, PricewaterhouseCoopers, comes in at No.5, right behind consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble.

The employers on our list understand that an outstanding internship experience is their most effective recruiting tool to snap up the top entry-level job candidates. That's why some companies have invested a considerable amount of money in their programs. Microsoft, for example, estimates it spends on average $30,000 per intern, when you factor in pay and benefits. Considering the company hired 542 undergraduate interns in 2009, that's roughly a $16 million investment.

Experience Abroad

Two years ago KPMG realized it had to make a substantial investment in its internship program if it hoped to woo top students from larger consulting and accounting firms. So the company decided to offer interns an opportunity to gain valuable overseas experience. KPMG lets student interns spend four weeks in the U.S. and four weeks abroad. "It's extremely competitive [to recruit top students], and this is a differentiator," says Blane Ruschak, executive director of campus recruiting at KPMG.

A chance to work overseas is precisely what appealed to Andrew Fedele, 21, an accounting and economics double major at Pennsylvania State University. "I was sold pretty much when I first read about [KPMG's] global internship program." He spent four weeks in Chicago and four weeks in Johannesburg, South Africa. "South Africa has just such an interesting history. To go there and live with the locals and work with them was really exciting."

What did KPMG get in return? Exactly what it hoped: Fedele accepted a full-time job almost immediately after KPMG made its offer at the end of the summer.

Gerdes is a staff editor for BusinessWeek in New York.


Bob Jensen's threads on careers ---

"The Trouble With Harvard:  The Ivy League is broken and only standardized tests can fix it," by Steven Pinker, The New Republic, September 4, 2014 ---

The most-read article in the history of this magazine is not about war, politics, or great works of art. It’s about the admissions policies of a handful of elite universities, most prominently my employer, Harvard, which is figuratively and literally immolated on the cover.

It’s not surprising that William Deresiewicz’s “Don’t Send Your Kid to the Ivy League” has touched a nerve. Admission to the Ivies is increasingly seen as the bottleneck to a pipeline that feeds a trickle of young adults into the remaining lucrative sectors of our financialized, winner-take-all economy. And their capricious and opaque criteria have set off an arms race of credential mongering that is immiserating the teenagers and parents (in practice, mostly mothers) of the upper middle class.

Deresiewicz writes engagingly about the wacky ways of elite university admissions, and he deserves credit for opening a debate on policies which have been shrouded in Victorian daintiness and bureaucratic obfuscation. Unfortunately, his article is a poor foundation for diagnosing and treating the illness. Long on dogmatic assertion and short on objective analysis, the article is driven by a literarism which exalts bohemian authenticity over worldly success and analytical brainpower. And his grapeshot inflicts a lot of collateral damage while sparing the biggest pachyderms in the parlor.

We can begin with his defamation of the students of elite universities. Like countless graybeards before him, Deresiewicz complains that the kids today are just no good: they are stunted, meek, empty, incurious zombies; faithful drudges; excellent sheep; and, in a flourish he uses twice, “out-of-touch, entitled little shits.” I have spent my career interacting with these students, and do not recognize the targets of this purple invective. Nor does Deresiewicz present any reason to believe that the 18-year-olds of today’s Ivies are more callow or unsure of their lives than the 18-year-olds of yesterday’s Ivies, the non-Ivies, or the country at large.

The charges on which Deresiewicz indicts students are trumped-up. He waxes sarcastic that they try to get an A in every class (would he advise them to turn in shoddy work in his course, or in some other professor’s?); that they don’t read every page of every book they pick up, or of every book whose review they have read (confession: neither do I); that they seek affluence, success, and prestigious careers (better they should smoke weed and play video games on their parents’ couches?); that they “superficially” spend no more than “A whole day!” with renegade artists (and if they spent two days with them?).

The only mitigation that Deresiewicz allows his young defendants is that they suffer from “toxic levels of fear, anxiety, and depression, of emptiness and aimlessness and isolation.” But the survey he alludes to simply found that about half of today’s college students rate themselves “above average” in emotional health, compared to more than 60 percent in 1985. Perhaps we should be impressed that fewer students today are victims of the Lake Wobegon fallacy! More to the point, the data don’t show that Ivy League students are worse off than their non-Ivy peers, and if anything they point in the opposite direction: the students at private universities are more sanguine about their emotional health than those at the public universities and four-year colleges that Deresiewicz romanticizes.

It’s true that many off-brand institutions in the matchless American university system are bargains. The honors program of a 50,000-student campus is likely to have an aggregation of talent that rivals that of the Ivies. Liberal-arts colleges in the boondocks, with their paucity of non-academic diversions, can nurture a student culture that is more engaged with ideas and books. The PhD glut has sent brilliant scientists and humanists into every outpost of the academic archipelago. And in many fields the best programs are at lesser-known universities, which can nimbly expand into new intellectual frontiers while their Ivy League counterparts, stultified by tradition and cushioned by reputation, become backwaters.

Still, there are no grounds for the sweeping pronouncements about the virtues of non-Ivy students (“more interesting, more curious, more open, and far less entitled and competitive”) that Deresiewicz prestidigitates out of thin air. It’s these schools, after all, that are famous for their jocks, stoners, Bluto Blutarskys, gut-course-hunters, term-paper-downloaders, and majors in such intellectually challenging fields as communications, marketing, and sports management. In another use of the argument “If I say it, it’s true,” Deresiewicz decrees that obscure religious colleges “do a much better job” in teaching their students “how to think,” and that they “deliver a better education, in the highest sense of the word” than elite universities—and then, breathtakingly, elevates an assertion that was based on nothing but his say-so (and that is almost certainly false) into an “indictment of the Ivy League and his peers.”

But the biggest problem is that the advice in Deresiewicz’s title is perversely wrongheaded. If your kid has survived the application ordeal and has been offered a place at an elite university, don’t punish her for the irrationalities of a system she did nothing to create; by all means send her there! The economist Caroline Hoxby has shown that selective universities spend twenty times more on student instruction, support, and facilities than less selective ones, while their students pay for a much smaller fraction of it, thanks to gifts to the college. Because of these advantages, it’s the selective institutions that are the real bargains in the university marketplace. Holding qualifications constant, graduates of a selective university are more likely to graduate on time, will tend to find a more desirable spouse, and will earn 20 percent more than those of less selective universities—every year for the rest of their working lives. These advantages swamp any differences in tuition and other expenses, which in any case are often lower than those of less selective schools because of more generous need-based financial aid. The Ivy admissions sweepstakes may be irrational, but the parents and teenagers who clamber to win it are not.

Any rethinking of elite university admissions must begin with an inkling of the goals of a university education. As the song says, if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there. One contributor to the admissions mess is that so few of a university’s thought leaders can say anything coherent about what those goals are. Deresiewicz’s fumbling attempt is typical.

It’s easy to agree with him that “the first thing that college is for is to teach you to think,” but much harder to figure out what that means. Deresiewicz knows what it does not mean—“the analytical and rhetorical skills that are necessary for success in business and the professions”—but this belletristic disdain for the real world is unhelpful. The skills necessary for success in the professions include organizing one’s thoughts so that they may be communicated clearly to others, breaking a complex problem into its components, applying general principles to specific cases, discerning cause and effect, and negotiating tradeoffs between competing values. In what rarefied ivory chateau do these skills not count as “thinking”? In its place Deresiewicz says only that learning to think consists of “contemplating things from a distance,” with no hint as to what that contemplation should consist of or where it should lead.

This leads to Deresiewicz’s second goal, “building a self,” which he explicates as follows: “it is only through the act of establishing communication between the mind and the heart, the mind and experience, that you become an individual, a unique being—a soul.” Perhaps I am emblematic of everything that is wrong with elite American education, but I have no idea how to get my students to build a self or become a soul. It isn’t taught in graduate school, and in the hundreds of faculty appointments and promotions I have participated in, we’ve never evaluated a candidate on how well he or she could accomplish it. I submit that if “building a self” is the goal of a university education, you’re going to be reading anguished articles about how the universities are failing at it for a long, long time.

I think we can be more specific. It seems to me that educated people should know something about the 13-billion-year prehistory of our species and the basic laws governing the physical and living world, including our bodies and brains. They should grasp the timeline of human history from the dawn of agriculture to the present. They should be exposed to the diversity of human cultures, and the major systems of belief and value with which they have made sense of their lives. They should know about the formative events in human history, including the blunders we can hope not to repeat. They should understand the principles behind democratic governance and the rule of law. They should know how to appreciate works of fiction and art as sources of aesthetic pleasure and as impetuses to reflect on the human condition.

On top of this knowledge, a liberal education should make certain habits of rationality second nature. Educated people should be able to express complex ideas in clear writing and speech. They should appreciate that objective knowledge is a precious commodity, and know how to distinguish vetted fact from superstition, rumor, and unexamined conventional wisdom. They should know how to reason logically and statistically, avoiding the fallacies and biases to which the untutored human mind is vulnerable. They should think causally rather than magically, and know what it takes to distinguish causation from correlation and coincidence. They should be acutely aware of human fallibility, most notably their own, and appreciate that people who disagree with them are not stupid or evil. Accordingly, they should appreciate the value of trying to change minds by persuasion rather than intimidation or demagoguery.

I believe (and believe I can persuade you) that the more deeply a society cultivates this knowledge and mindset, the more it will flourish. The conviction that they are teachable gets me out of bed in the morning. Laying the foundations in just four years is a formidable challenge. If on top of all this, students want to build a self, they can do it on their own time.

I heartily agree with Deresiewicz that high-quality postsecondary education is a public good which should be accessible to any citizen who can profit from it. At the same time, there are reasons for students to distribute themselves among colleges with different emphases and degrees of academic rigor. People vary in their innate and acquired intelligence, their taste for abstraction, their familiarity with literate culture, their priorities in life, and their personality traits relevant to learning. I could not offer a course in brain science or linguist theory to a representative sample of the college-age population without baffling many students at one end and boring an equal number at the other. Also, students learn as much from their peers as their professors, and benefit from a cohort with which they can bat around ideas. Not least, a vibrant research institution must bring smarter undergraduates into the fold, to challenge received wisdom, inject energy and innovation, and replenish its senescing membership.

All this is to say that there are good reasons to have selective universities. The question is, How well are the Ivies fulfilling their mandate? After three stints teaching at Harvard spanning almost four decades, I am repeatedly astounded by the answer.

Like many observers of American universities, I used to believe the following story. Once upon a time Harvard was a finishing school for the plutocracy, where preppies and Kennedy scions earned gentleman’s Cs while playing football, singing in choral groups, and male-bonding at final clubs, while the blackballed Jews at CCNY founded left-wing magazines and slogged away in labs that prepared them for their Nobel prizes in science. Then came Sputnik, the '60s, and the decline of genteel racism and anti-Semitism, and Harvard had to retool itself as a meritocracy, whose best-and-brightest gifts to America would include recombinant DNA, Wall Street quants, The Simpsons, Facebook, and the masthead of The New Republic.

This story has a grain of truth in it: Hoxby has documented that the academic standards for admission to elite universities have risen over the decades. But entrenched cultures die hard, and the ghost of Oliver Barrett IV still haunts every segment of the Harvard pipeline.

At the admissions end, it’s common knowledge that Harvard selects at most 10 percent (some say 5 percent) of its students on the basis of academic merit. At an orientation session for new faculty, we were told that Harvard “wants to train the future leaders of the world, not the future academics of the world,” and that “We want to read about our student in Newsweek 20 years hence” (prompting the woman next to me to mutter, “Like the Unabomer”). The rest are selected “holistically,” based also on participation in athletics, the arts, charity, activism, travel, and, we inferred (Not in front of the children!), race, donations, and legacy status (since anything can be hidden behind the holistic fig leaf).

The lucky students who squeeze through this murky bottleneck find themselves in an institution that is single-mindedly and expensively dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge. It has an astonishing library system that pays through the nose for rare manuscripts, obscure tomes, and extortionately priced journals; exotic laboratories at the frontiers of neuroscience, regenerative medicine, cosmology, and other thrilling pursuits; and a professoriate with erudition in an astonishing range of topics, including many celebrity teachers and academic rock stars. The benefits of matching this intellectual empyrean with the world’s smartest students are obvious. So why should an ability to play the bassoon or chuck a lacrosse ball be given any weight in the selection process?

The answer, ironically enough, makes the admissocrats and Deresiewicz strange bedfellows: the fear of selecting a class of zombies, sheep, and grinds. But as with much in the Ivies’ admission policies, little thought has given to the consequences of acting on this assumption. Jerome Karabel has unearthed a damning paper trail showing that in the first half of the twentieth century, holistic admissions were explicitly engineered to cap the number of Jewish students. Ron Unz, in an exposé even more scathing than Deresiewicz’s, has assembled impressive circumstantial evidence that the same thing is happening today with Asians.

Just as troublingly, why are elite universities, of all institutions, perpetuating the destructive stereotype that smart people are one-dimensional dweebs? It would be an occasion for hilarity if anyone suggested that Harvard pick its graduate students, faculty, or president for their prowess in athletics or music, yet these people are certainly no shallower than our undergraduates. In any case, the stereotype is provably false. Camilla Benbow and David Lubinski have tracked a large sample of precocious teenagers identified solely by high performance on the SAT, and found that when they grew up, they not only excelled in academia, technology, medicine, and business, but won outsize recognition for their novels, plays, poems, paintings, sculptures, and productions in dance, music, and theater. A comparison to a Harvard freshman class would be like a match between the Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals.

What about the rationalization that charitable extracurricular activities teach kids important lessons of moral engagement? There are reasons to be skeptical. A skilled professional I know had to turn down an important freelance assignment because of a recurring commitment to chauffeur her son to a resumé-building “social action” assignment required by his high school. This involved driving the boy for 45 minutes to a community center, cooling her heels while he sorted used clothing for charity, and driving him back—forgoing income which, judiciously donated, could have fed, clothed, and inoculated an African village. The dubious “lessons” of this forced labor as an overqualified ragpicker are that children are entitled to treat their mothers’ time as worth nothing, that you can make the world a better place by destroying economic value, and that the moral worth of an action should be measured by the conspicuousness of the sacrifice rather than the gain to the beneficiary.

Knowing how our students are selected, I should not have been surprised when I discovered how they treat their educational windfall once they get here. A few weeks into every semester, I face a lecture hall that is half-empty, despite the fact that I am repeatedly voted a Harvard Yearbook Favorite Professor, that the lectures are not video-recorded, and that they are the only source of certain material that will be on the exam. I don’t take it personally; it’s common knowledge that Harvard students stay away from lectures in droves, burning a fifty-dollar bill from their parents’ wallets every time they do. Obviously they’re not slackers; the reason is that they are crazy-busy. Since they’re not punching a clock at Safeway or picking up kids at day-care, what could they be doing that is more important than learning in class? The answer is that they are consumed by the same kinds of extracurricular activities that got them here in the first place.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies ---

"In Cheeky Pushback, Colleges Razz Rate My Professors," by Dan Berrett, Chronicle of Higher Education, September 11, 2014 ---

New Features on RateMyProfessor --- http://blog.ratemyprofessors.com/were-getting-a-makeover/

Navigate RateMyProfessor

"Medical Scholar Built Career on Enormous Fraud, Investigation Finds," by Andy Thomason, Chronicle of Higher Education, September 10, 2014 ---

Two years ago, West Virginia University was nearly ready to name a new department chair: Anoop Shankar, a member of the Royal College of Physicians with a Ph.D. in epidemiology and dozens of papers in scholarly journals under his belt.

There was just one problem, reports NBC News: Mr. Shankar wasn’t any of those things.

The results of the network’s investigation, published Wednesday morning, show Mr. Shankar’s exploits to be that of “a charming, bright-minded impostor who built a career on a base of lies.”

The extent of Mr. Shankar’s deceptions began to emerge when the chair of the School of Public Health’s promotion and tenure committee began a review of his résumé. He found, among many other falsehoods, that Mr. Shankar had not actually written any of the papers listed on his curriculum vitae. After the university dug deeper, Mr. Shankar resigned, in December 2012.

But the university hasn’t spoken publicly on the case. As a result, NBC News reports, Mr. Shankar was hired for a position at Virginia Commonwealth University. That college opened its own probe only after NBC News submitted questions about Mr. Shankar for its investigation. As a result, he left the university last month.

"UNLV Professor Is Investigated for Career-Spanning Plagiarism," by Peter Schmidt, Chronicle of Higher Education, August 21, 2014 ---
Also see

Plagiarism appears to be an act that some in academe cannot resist duplicating.

Mustapha Marrouchi, a professor of postcolonial literature at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, is facing accusations of dozens of acts of plagiarism over the past 24 years, even after twice previously being publicly called out for lifting the words of other scholars.

The documented instances of Mr. Marrouchi’s quoting the works of others without attribution include passages in his books, essays, blog posts, and course descriptions. They begin with his 1990 dissertation as a doctoral student at the University of Toronto, extend through his four years on the faculty of Louisiana State University’s English department, and continue up through three journal articles published last year.

In some cases, he is accused of improperly claiming as his own entire essays by other writers in which he changed just a few words. In a 2008 essay on Al Qaeda published in the journal Callaloo, for example, he reprinted, without attribution, much of a review of the movie 300 written by the New Yorker staff writer David Denby the year before. In a 1992 incident which marks the first time he was publicly accused of plagiarism, Queen’s Quarterly published an essay by Mr. Marrouchi that repeated almost verbatim the content of another writer’s essay in the London Review of Books.

Mr. Marrouchi could not be reached by telephone on Tuesday and Wednesday and did not return several emails seeking comment.

Administrators at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, citing a policy against commenting on personnel matters, refused to discuss the allegations against Mr. Marrouchi or to say anything about him other than that he remains on the faculty there. Several faculty members in the university’s English department, where he has worked since 2008, similarly refused to comment on the accusations against him.

Continued in article

"Following Retraction, Bentley Professor Resigns," Inside Higher Ed, December 21, 2012 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on plagiarism and cheating by professors ---

No, Your Router Isn’t Broken. It’s Just Internet Slowdown Day ---

It's Painfully Slow to Get Details of This Horrible Athletics Grade Changing Scandal and Courses for Credit That Never Met

"At Chapel Hill, a Scandal That Won't Die," by Jack Stripling, Chronicle of Higher Education, September 8, 2014 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on athletics cheating scandals ---

The University of Maryland University College needs to change to stay alive:
But so far the university can only agree on what it doesn’t want to change into

"American University professor (and department chair) arrested on burglary, destruction of property charge," by Peter Herman, The Washington Post, September 5, 2014 ---

A 37-year-old professor and department chair at American University was arrested Thursday and charged with breaking into a building at a shopping mall near campus and setting a small fire, according to D.C. police.

David Pitts, chair of the Department of Public Administration and Policy, was being detained pending his initial appearance in D.C. Superior Court on Friday. He was charged with burglary and destruction of property.

A police spokesman said Pitts was arrested after the break-in and fire that was reported at the Foxhall Square Shopping Mall in the 3300 block of New Mexico Ave. NW. The shopping center is about two blocks from the American University campus. It includes a hair salon, bakery, gift shop and cafe, among other speciality shops.

Police did not disclose a motive. A spokesman said officers were called to the mall about 2:50 a.m. for a report of the break-in and fire, which was in a parking garage.

Teresa Flannery, American University’s vice president for communications, issued a statement Friday saying that Pitts has been placed on leave “until more is known about this matter.” The statement says that Pitts’ duties as department chair have been assumed by Alison Jacknowitz, an associate professor, and that “we are making arrangements for other faculty to assume teaching responsibilities for Dr. Pitts’ classes.”

The statement also says that officials “are not aware of any safety threats to our community.”

According to the university Internet site, Pitts researches issues of diversity in public policy. The site says he is on the editorial boards of several university journals and publications, and has a PhD from the University of Georgia.

Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, And Other Top CEOs Name Their Favorite Books ---

Competency-Based Degrees Without Course Requirements
"U.S. Approval for Wisconsin Competency-Based Program," Inside Higher Ed, September 3, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
There are somewhat similar options at other universities like the University of Akron, Southern New Hampshire, and Capella.

We seem to have come full circle from the 19th Century when the University of Chicago gave course credits for passing final examinations even if students did not attend classes.

"Capella Gets Federal Approval for Competency-Based Degrees," Inside Higher Ed,  August 13, 2013 ---

The University of Northern Arizona Offers a Dual Transcript Option, One of Which is Competency-Based
"Competency-Based Transcripts," by Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed, August 9, 2013 ---

Jensen Comment
This program at Northern Arizona differs from the competency-based programs at the University of Wisconsin, the University of Akron, Capella University, and Southern New Hampshire University in that students at Northern Arizona must sign up for online courses at Northern Arizona before becoming eligible for the competency-based transcript. It differs from Western Governors University in that there are two transcripts rather than just a competency-based transcript for online courses.

Capella may have a more difficult time getting employers and graduate schools to accept Capella's competency-based  transcript credit in general relative to the University of Wisconsin, the University of Akron, and Southern New Hampshire University. Time will tell. Much depends upon other criteria such as SAT scores, GRE scores, GMAT scores, LSAT scores, MCAT scores, and professional licensing examination scores.

Bob Jensen's threads on competency-based degrees ---

"Robert Reich: College is a ludicrous waste of money," by Robert Reich (former USA Secretary of Labor and Leftist Economist), Salon, September 3, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
But aren't we glad our top professors, teachers, physicians, lawyers, accountants, etc. wasted their money? Aren't we glad our spouses and life-long friends wasted their money to meet us on campus?

Among other things, Reich wants to shorten the time to an undergraduate degree by eliminating much of high school. I think this is the wrong solution. What we should do is instead eliminate undergraduate and graduate degrees, replacing them with modules of competency where students get credit for what they learn irrespective of where they learned it. For example does one really have to take college courses in Shakespeare to be an expert on Shakespeare?

The problem with both of the above changes in education is that something must remain in the education system to motivate students to want to learn. High school seniors more often than not do not really know where they want to end up in terms of careers and knowledge in general. The typical college student changes majors at least one or two times and some change majors more often than twice. We must give them time in college to experiment in courses and learn more about what careers are really like. A naive student entering college really has little knowledge about what it's really like in the professions of psychology, accounting, medicine, science, mathematics, pharmacy, nursing, etc. Probably the least understood is physical therapy and what a 40-year career of a physical therapist is really like. Also the least understood is what a 40-year career in accountancy is really like.

Robert Reich seems to assume that students are spending their money for course credits and grades and degrees. On most campuses students are really spending their money to mature in their knowledge of life, business, government, and each other. The value of the investment may be less in the four-year diploma and more in the value of growing up, finding a life-long mate, acquiring knowledge of what they learned in the classrooms apart from what was in their textbooks, etc.

No college is not a waste of money for those that have the motivation and talent to learn. But college should not be a necessary condition to those who want to learn given the resources that we have today for free learning.

College should not be a necessary condition for high paying jobs. Competency should be the condition. Plumbers up here in the White Mountains are desperately in short supply. My plumbing company owner just lost all of his plumbers that he was paying $60+ per hour because they could make so much more from his competitors who are desperate for master plumbers. Dashboard mechanics get over $100 per hour.

The best and the brightest high school students should not be forced to invest in college for a career. They should perhaps go to college to learn things other than what they need to know to enter a career. But they should not be forced to go to colleges that create excess supply in some careers like sports marketing and shortages in other careers like the skilled trades.


Jensen Comment
College Factual has a ranking of good accounting schools, but this is not the list I would create for the top schools.

USA Today publicizes an accounting program ranking from College Factual (never heard of that outfit)

Top Accounting Undergraduate Programs Ranked by US News ---

  1. University of Texas--Austin
  2. University of Illinois--Urbana-Champaign
  3. Brigham Young University--Provo

  4. University of Notre Dame

  5. University of Southern California

  6. University of Michigan--Ann Arbor

  7. New York University

  8. Ohio State University--Columbus


Jensen Comment
My own listing of the Top 10 would be much closer to the US News rankings. But I would replace one of the above with Cornell University largely because Cornell is in the Ivy League. Being in the Ivy League does not make its undergraduate program better, but being in the Ivy League means that students accepted into the university in general are in a league of their own.

Note that to sit for the Uniform CPA Examination, accounting graduates must have 150 credits. This means they must take a fifth year, and most accounting graduates do so by getting a masters degree in accountancy or taxation rather than an MBA degree. Most states have require accounting courses to sit for the CPA examination that are not available in MBA programs. MBA programs that have accounting concentrations require that students have a set of undergraduate accounting courses.

I should also note that when I scan the listings of employees who have been promoted to partnerships in the largest accounting firms (often much less than 10% of the initial hires by the firms) the alma maters of those new partners are more often than not graduated from much lower-ranked among accounting education programs. The reason is that exceptional accounting graduates can be found in any accounting program, and often the top partner prospects are highly motivated and talented students from lesser-known universities who can compete with graduates in the top universities.

What are the top-ranked accounting graduate programs? 
It all depends on what programs and what criteria are used for the rankings

Top Accounting MBA in Accounting Specialty Programs Ranked by US News ---

University of Texas—​Austin (McCombs)
Austin, TX

University of Pennsylvania (Wharton)
Philadelphia, PA

University of Illinois—​Urbana-​Champaign
Champaign, IL

University of Chicago (Booth)
Chicago, IL

University of Michigan—​Ann Arbor (Ross)
Ann Arbor, MI

Stanford University
Stanford, CA

Brigham Young University (Marriott)
Provo, UT

University of Southern California (Marshall)
Los Angeles, CA

New York University (Stern)
New York, NY

University of North Carolina—​Chapel Hill (Kenan-​Flagler)
Chapel Hill, NC

See all 30 Ranked Schools

Jensen Comment
In some ways the above rankings of MBA programs with accounting specialties are misleading. There are some top-ranked MBA programs above that should probably be avoided for graduates seeking careers as CPAs in auditing and taxation. All the programs above have accounting Ph.D. programs, but the above top rankings for MBA in accounting specialties are not necessarily the top accounting doctoral programs.

Students seeking to pass the CPA examination and aiming for careers in auditing and taxation should probably seek out masters of accounting or masters of taxation programs rather than MBA programs. Brigham Young University (Marriott) has a top-ranked masters of accounting program but no accounting doctoral program. The University of Texas, the University of Michigan, the University of Southern California, the University of North Carolina, and the University of Illinois have top masters of accounting programs, MBA programs, and Ph.D. programs.

Stanford University and the University of Chicago have prestigious MBA programs but do not have masters of accounting programs. Students seeking to pass the CPA examination and searching for careers in auditing and taxation would not normally choose Stanford or Chicago.

Top Masters of Accounting Programs

Best Master’s in Accounting Schools According to Professors

Here are the top ranked master’s in accounting programs in 2013 according to the Public Accounting Report:
1. University of Texas
2. Brigham Young University
3. University of Illinois
4. University of Notre Dame
5. University of Mississippi
6. University of Southern California
7. University of Michigan
8. Texas A&M University
9. Indiana University
10. University of North Carolina

The Public Accounting Report ranks accounting programs annually based on a survey of accounting professors at over 200 colleges and universities.

Accounting Schools with the Highest 2013 First-Time CPA Pass Rate

1. Brigham Young University
2. University Georgia
3. University of Wisconsin Madison
4. University of Michigan Ann Arbor
5. University of Notre Dame
6. Texas A&M University
7. University of Virginia
8. University of Texas Austin
9. Lehigh University
10. University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

These rankings are for large schools with at least 60 candidates for the CPA exam. For all candidates in the United States, the first-time pass rate was 54.6% in 2013 according to Nasba.org. You can find more information and specific statistics on the 2013 NASBA Uniform CPA Examination Candidate Performance report.


If we were to just rank the accounting doctoral programs in terms of research performance the rankings might be quite different from the rankings shown above for MBA specialty  and Master of Accounting Programs ---

The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning --- http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/index

Bob Jensen's threads on Open (free) learning materials, MOOCs, and tutorials from prestigious universities ---

Bob Jensen's treads on fee-based distance education alternatives around the world ---

Community College Research Center --- http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/ 

Continuing Education --- http://www.rand.org/topics/continuing-education.html

ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center) --- http://eric.ed.gov/ 

Bob Jensen's threads on education research and teaching helpers ---

Technology Integration (integrating education technology into the classroom) ---  http://www.edutopia.org/technology-integration

Digital Humanities Tool Box --- http://www.scoop.it/t/digital-humanities-tool-box

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

Bob Jensen's threads on Tools and Tricks of the Trade --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm

The 10 Lowest-Paying Jobs for College Graduates ---

Jensen Comment
Pay is low in most of the above careers due to supply way in excess of demand. However, the ranking above is misleading in several ways. Some careers like being a legislator do not require a college diploma. Also most legislators in the USA supplement income with their business interests, and many make huge incomes for graft.

Some careers like coaching are accompanied by tenure in teaching careers. Coaches either teach and coach at the same time or fall back on teaching when they resign as coaches. Teaching salaries are usually understated when they are 9-month contracts being compared with salaries of workers over 12 months. Most teachers that want summer work supplement their 9-month salaries.

Athletes are sometimes attracted to athletics-related majors in college that do not pay well upon graduation. My cousin's grandson just recently graduated in "Sports Marketing" from Iowa State University. I think his job prospects would have been better as a marketing major in ISU's College of Business.

Links from the Chronicle of Higher Education on September 2, 2014

Do Americans Expect Too Much From a College Degree?

By Dan Berrett
A new book about the Class of 2009 shows how economic measures that judge institutions can overshadow their civic and intellectual missions.

'Adrift' After College: How Graduates Fail

By Dan Berrett
Many don’t have jobs, live with their parents, and pay too little attention to the news, a new book finds. Colleges must shoulder their share of the blame.


Quiz: Were You 'Adrift' at 22?

By Vincent DeFrancesco
Many graduates, the authors found, were struggling at that age. Cast your mind back and see how adrift you were—by taking this scientifically unsound quiz.


Commentary: Let's Ask More of Our Students—and of Ourselves

By Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa
As educators, we need to start making our own plans to improve academic standards.

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies ---

"Parallels Desktop 10: A Smoother Way to Run Windows on Your Mac," by David Pogue, Yahoo Tech, August 28, 2014 ---

Watch the Video!

In 2005, Steve Jobs made a jaw-dropping announcement: that after 21 years of putting chips made by IBM or Motorola into Mac computers, Apple would switch to Intel processors.

The switchover made the Mac, in essence, a different computer. All Mac programs would had to be rewritten (or they would have to run in a special, awkward “Classic” window). The Mac operating system, OS X, would have to be rewritten, too. In fact, Apple had rewritten it, in secret.

But among techies, there was a gleeful realization: “Hey,” they said, “if a Mac has an Intel chip inside, we could hack it to run Windows!”

And who would want to do that? Really, four categories of people:

1. Fans of programs like Quicken, QuickBooks, and Microsoft Office, which are far more polished and rich in their Windows versions.

2. People who use programs that don’t exist at all in Mac versions, like Internet Explorer, AutoCAD, SAP (corporate resource planning), Epic (medical records), and custom corporate apps.

3. People who write webpages and software, so they can test their work in several operating systems on a single laptop.

4. People switching from Windows to Mac who want a safety net — the ability to hop back into Windows when necessary.

So sure enough: For about a month, instructions for installing Windows onto a Mac circulated online like a secret recipe. Then Apple introduced Boot Camp: an authorized way to install Windows on a Mac. Unfortunately, Boot Camp lets you run either Windows or Mac OS X, not both at the same time — and you have to restart the computer to go back and forth.

There was soon yet another option: virtualization programs, like Parallels Desktop or VMWare Fusion. These programs let you run Windows in a window, floating there on your Mac screen. You can run both operating systems simultaneously, and even copy and paste between them. Insane!

Continued in article

"Dropbox Adds 1 TB Storage Plan for $10 a Month; That’s a Lot of Cat Pictures," by Daniel Howley, Yahoo Tech, August 25, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
Teachers will not so much be storing pictures of their kitties as they will store videos intended for learning. One of the constraints on campus servers is that teachers in most instances cannot get anywhere near 1 TB for their Websites and/or courses. Of course videos can be posted free to YouTube, but then they are available to the world and not just students in particular courses.

Chrromecast Dongle --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromecast

"How Can I Use My Google Chromecast In a Hotel Room? ---

Chromebook (a laptop running on the Chrome Operating System) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromebook

Chrome (Linux) Operating System from Google --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chrome_OS

"Chromebooks (laptops) Surge in K-12 as Tablets Drop Off," by David Nagel, T.H.E. Journal, August 26, 2014 ---

Personal computing devices are continuing to surge in K-12, but tablets have lost a lot of their momentum. According to a new report, notebooks — especially Chromebooks — are back on top as tablet shipments were decimated in the latest quarter.

A total of 2.4 million personal computing devices were purchased by schools and districts in the second quarter, a 12 percent increase over Q2 2103.

But according to market research firm Futuresource Consulting, tablet shipments in K-12 fell off 10 percent in the second quarter of 2014 from Q2 2013, the first year-over-year decline for tablets. According to Futuresource, "The availability of other devices, such as detachable tablets and convertible notebooks, has given districts and end users more choice in terms of choosing the device that meets both student and teacher needs."

According to Futuresource Market Analyst Phil Maddocks, "As well as LAUSD announcing that they are considering other alternatives to tablets, we have seen other school districts look at other form factors such as Baltimore School District which has announced it is purchasing convertible notebooks for its students and teachers, while Fresno school district has rolled out 15,000 detachable tablets to students. With new Microsoft devices due to be launched later this year from many OEMs, new Chromebooks — as well as the launch of Apple's next iPad — the choices for US school districts is continuing to increase."

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Tablets still fill niche markets such as iPads that are popular with autistic children.

Higher education leans toward traditional laptops operating on Windows or Mac operating systems. Business students are advised to become familiar with MS Office products that they are most likely to encounter in their jobs, particularly MS Word and MS Excel.

"The 15 Most Common Presentation Mistakes," by Richard Feloni, Business Insider, August 25, 2014 ---

What not to do in PowerPoint (video) --- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORxFwBR4smE

"LESSONS FROM DILBERT (about PowerPoint)," by Joe Hoyle, Teaching Blog, September 28, 2011 ---

"Seven tips to beautiful PowerPoint," by Eugene Cheng  ---

"The Battle Against Bad PowerPoint," by Jeffrey R. Young, Chronicle of Higher Education, March 8, 2012 ---

"Redesigning Mary Meeker's Ugly Internet Slideshow," by Belinda Lanks, Bloomberg Businessweek, May 30, 2014 ---

Video Tips on How to Improve Laptop Presentations ---

Bob Jensen's threads on PowerPoint Presentations ---

"This Is An Actual Conversation With A Car Dealer — And It Shows How The Industry Is Juicing Sales," by Myles Udland, Business Insider, August 28, 2014 ---

The Washington Post's New Personal Finance Service ---

What five classic Disney movies can teach us about personal finance ---

Bob Jensen's personal finance helpers ---

"A Profile of Freshmen at 4-Year Colleges, Fall 2013," Chronicle of Higher Education, August 18, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
When reading the data tables don't forget that these are for 4-year colleges only.
Also read the comments.

"How Much Student-Loan Debt Is Too Much?" by Beckie Supiano, Chronicle of Higher Education, September 2014 ---
Scroll down and down on this article

Jensen Comment
Don't be misled by the term "expert" in this article. Student loan balances are like love --- there are no experts that are always relevant for specific circumstances that are bound to vary for each and every case. One such circumstances is when payback becomes shared by others such as significant others, spouses, parents, grandparents, etc. For example, some students will get a bequest when a grandparent dies.  Other students have no such bequests in the horizon.

Grandparents must be responsible for their own elder care and save for eventualities such as long stays in nursing homes. Medicare does not pay for nursing homes. It's irresponsible for grandparents to give away their elder care savings in advance, but after death in many instances there are savings that can help with the debts of children and grandchildren.

Too much student debt can work the opposite way when significant others and potential spouses don't want to take on enormous loans of boyfriends or girlfriends. Huge student loans can lead to long delays in marriage and having children. Huge student loans can lead to delays in moving out of the homes of parents and loss of personal and financial independence.

I have a granddaughter who will be graduating this academic year with a substantial student loan balance hanging over her head. She really wants to go on for an MBA degree, but the need to pay back some of her student loan is a stumbling block in furthering her education. Like it or not she must go to work as a pharmacist to begin paying down her student loan. With 11 other grandchildren approaching the start of college Erika and I cannot afford to help all of them avoid student loans. We have our own mortgage and possible elder care responsibilities to consider.

Electric Car Owners Contribute Nothing or Almost Nothing to Road Repairs While Gasoline and Diesel Fuel Vehicles Foot the Road Repair Bills

"Electric-Car Owners Get Taxed ($64 per year) for Not Paying Gas Taxes," by Alison Vekshin, Bloomberg Businessweek, June 6, 2013 ---

Jensen Comment
Tesla Model S owners now have a trillion mile warranty (of eight years) where all those miles are a free ride to Tesla owners in terms of the road and bridge  depreciation they help cause. This is a wealth transfer that nobody seems to talk about where poor people in old gas guzzlers are paying for the road and bridge repairs enjoyed as a free good by rich Model S owners.

In Virginia electric car owners pay $64 per year for road repairs. Big deal.

Jensen Comment
The outcomes below might surprise you. For example, we always think of Scandinavian countries as having gender equality. However, there appears to be a thick glass ceiling in the private sector the Nordic countries where there are four CEOs in the private sector out of 145 Nordic CEOs.

Gender Balance Scorecard Report --- http://20-first.com/research/

"How 6 Countries Compare on Executive Gender Balance,"  by Avivah Wittenberg-Cox, Harvard Business Review Blog, July 18, 2014 ---

"Even Scandinavia Has a CEO Gender Gap:  Of 145 Big Nordic Companies, Only 3% Had a Woman as Chief Executive, Versus 5% of the U.S. Fortune 500," by Christina Zander, The Wall Street Journal, May 21, 2014 ---

. . .

The view at the top of companies in Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Iceland illustrates how an abundance of policies aimed at closing Scandinavia's corporate gender gap, including board quotas, are still falling short of putting women in the coveted CEO job.

"At the executive level the cork is still in the bottle," Karen Frøsig, head of Denmark's Sydbank and one of the region's few female CEOs of a public company.

For nearly half a century, Nordic nations have pioneered efforts to close the gender gap. In Norway, 40% of board members must be women, while Finland enforces softer director quotas. Each of these countries offers generous daycare benefits. Parental-leave laws are designed to distribute child-raising responsibilities between mom and dad.

The policies have caught notice. The European Union has looked closely at replicating Norway's female board-quota system. But none of Norway's 32 large-cap companies is run by a woman, suggesting there is no correlation between having several female directors in the boardroom and hiring a woman CEO.

As of 2013, women made up 41% of the boards at Norway's public companies, compared with 18% at private limited companies. But 5.8% of general managers at publicly listed companies were women as of 2013, compared with 15.1% at private companies.

"I am not a fan of taking this one step further and introducing mandatory quotas," said Ms. Frøsig at Sydbank. "What the politicians can do is to make sure the issue of gender equality remains on the agenda."

The Finns have also struggled despite having the most women on company boards in all of the EU. But none of Finland's 27 biggest companies has a woman at the helm.

"You often hear the argument that more women on a company board will automatically lead to more women executives," said Leena Linnainmaa, deputy chief executive of Finland Chamber of Commerce. "But this has no significance what so ever."

To get more women at the top, you need to start at the bottom, Sandvik's Ms. Einarsson said. "If there should be quota introduced anywhere, it should be in the recruitment, at entry level, so that there are more women to choose from when filling a management position," she said.

Nordic women are disproportionately thrust into the sprawling public sector, where jobs are designed to be easier on women trying to balance children and careers. Three quarters of public employees are women in the region, compared with 57% in the U.S.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on the history of women in accounting and other professional women ---

Taking advantage of the Starbucks subsidy for employees to complete years 3 and 4 of their undergraduate degrees
"Nearly 4,000 Starbucks Employees Apply to Arizona State (online)," Inside Higher Ed, September 3, 2014 ---

Thousands more Wal-Mart employees take advantage of the Wal-Mart subsidies, but there are many more Wal-Mart employees and Wal-Mart subsidizes an entire undergraduate degree.

Bob Jensen's threads on fee-based distance education alternatives ---

From Nate Silver's 5:38 Blog on August 28, 2014
2014 NFL Preview: Can Cam Newton Overtake Rob Ryan In The NFC South? ---

"A Dating Site for Algorithms:  A startup called Algorithmia wants to connect underused algorithms with those who want to make sense of data," MIT's Technology Review, September 2, 2014 ---

A startup called Algorithmia has a new twist on online matchmaking. Its website is a place for businesses with piles of data to find researchers with a dreamboat algorithm that could extract insights–and profits–from it all.

The aim is to make better use of the many algorithms that are developed in academia but then languish after being published in research papers, says cofounder Diego Oppenheimer. Many have the potential to help companies sort through and make sense of the data they collect from customers or on the Web at large. If Algorithmia makes a fruitful match, a researcher is paid a fee for the algorithm’s use, and the matchmaker takes a small cut. The site is currently in a private beta test with users including academics, students, and some businesses, but Oppenheimer says it already has some paying customers and should open to more users in a public test by the end of the year.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Some algorithms, especially those developed by academics, languish in the real world due to unrealistic assumptions, particularly assumptions of stationarity, robustness, and difficulty in estimating sufficiently precise parameters. Matchmaking will not overcome unrealistic assumptions with the wave of a magic wand.

For example, although there have been many real-world applications of the Simplex Algorithm for linear programming models, most optimization problems have non-convex solution spaces that cannot be evaluated efficiently by any known generalized algorithm (and probably will forever defy cost-effective optimization solutions). The Simplex Algorithm assumes convexity --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simplex_algorithm

My point is that a dating site for algorithms is not going to solve most problems in troubled algorithms.

Galileo Galilei --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galileo_Galilei

Galileo’s Sidereus Nuncius is among the most extraordinary books in the history of scientific publishing – and among the most intricately forged..

Jensen Comment
It's somewhat misleading to judge scholars and artists who died hundreds of years ago by today's standards. It was common clear up into the 19th Century for professors and artists in Europe to get full credit (and payments) for works of their students. Often there was no attribution to students who created the writings and art. Galileo's alleged forgeries, however, extend well beyond the works of his students.

Bob Jensen's threads on celebrities who plagiarized or otherwise cheated ---

"The Psychology of Writing and the Cognitive Science of the Perfect Daily Routine," by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, Aubust 25, 2014 ---

How to sculpt an environment that optimizes creative flow and summons relevant knowledge from your long-term memory through the right retrieval cues.

Reflecting on the ritualization of creativity, Bukowski famously scoffed that “air and light and time and space have nothing to do with.” Samuel Johnson similarly contended that “a man may write at any time, if he will set himself doggedly to it.” And yet some of history’s most successful and prolific writers were women and men of religious daily routines and odd creative rituals. (Even Buk himself ended up sticking to a peculiar daily routine.)

Such strategies, it turns out, may be psychologically sound and cognitively fruitful. In the altogether illuminating 1994 volume The Psychology of Writing (public library), cognitive psychologist Roland T. Kellogg explores how work schedules, behavioral rituals, and writing environments affect the amount of time invested in trying to write and the degree to which that time is spent in a state of boredom, anxiety, or creative flow. Kellogg writes:

[There is] evidence that environments, schedules, and rituals restructure the writing process and amplify performance… The principles of memory retrieval suggest that certain practices should amplify performance. These practices encourage a state of flow rather than one of anxiety or boredom. Like strategies, these other aspects of a writer’s method may alleviate the difficulty of attentional overload. The room, time of day, or ritual selected for working may enable or even induce intense concentration or a favorable motivational or emotional state. Moreover, in accordance with encoding specificity, each of these aspects of method may trigger retrieval of ideas, facts, plans, and other relevant knowledge associated with the place, time, or frame of mind selected by the writer for work.

Kellogg reviews a vast body of research to extract a few notable findings. Among them is the role of background noise, which seems to fall on a bell curve of fecundity: High-intensity noise that exceeds 95 decibels disrupts performance on complex tasks but improves it on simple, boring tasks — noise tends to raise arousal level, which can be useful when trying to stay alert during mindless and monotonous work, but can agitate you out of creative flow when immersed in the kind of work that requires deliberate, reflective thought. (The psychology of writing, after all, as Kellogg notes in the introduction, is a proxy for the psychology of thinking.) The correlation between skill level and task difficulty also plays a role — feeling like your skills are not up to par raises your level of anxiety, which in turn makes noise more bothersome.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's writing helpers ---

Taxpayers who received health insurance from Obamacare need to file Form 1095-A with their tax returns in 2014 and every year thereafter

Tax professionals who are unaware of the new form is called a 1095-A that "lists who in each household has health coverage and how much the government paid each month to subsidize their premiums. Nearly 5 million people have gotten subsidies through HealthCare.gov" ---

. . .

Funneling subsidies through the income-tax system was once seen as a political plus for Obama and the law's supporters. It allowed the White House to claim that the Affordable Care Act is "the largest tax cut for health care in American history." But it also promises to make an already complicated tax system more difficult for many consumers.

Supporters of the law are also concerned about a related issue: People who got too big a subsidy for health care in 2014 will have to pay it back next year. And docking refunds will be the first way the IRS seeks repayment.

That can happen if someone's income for 2014 ends up being higher than estimated when he or she first applied for health insurance. Unless such people promptly reported the change to their health insurance marketplace, they will owe money.

"If someone wound up having more overtime than they projected, or they received a bonus for good work, these are the kind of changes that have an impact on subsidies," said Ron Pollack, executive director of the advocacy group Families USA.

Since the whole system is brand-new, experts are predicting that millions will end up having to repay money.

Tim Horton NHL Hockey Star --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Horton

Tim Horton Doughnut Industries (over 40 shops that grew over 100-fold after his death) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Horton#Doughnut_industries

Burger King's Tax Inversion and Canada's Favorable Corporate Tax Rates ---

"The Real Tim Horton:   He doesn't come up much in the Burger King news, but he was an exceptional hockey star." by Gerald Eskenazi, The Wall Street Journal, September 1, 2014 --- 

Amid the media attention to Burger King Worldwide's BKW +2.33% plan to buy the Canadian coffee-and-doughnuts chain Tim Hortons Inc. THI.T +0.34% for about $11 billion, I keep wondering: Does anyone involved know who Tim Horton was?

I got to know Tim Horton, perhaps the finest hockey defender of his day, when he became a New York Ranger late in the 1969-70 season and I was a sportswriter covering the team for the New York Times. NYT +0.24% By then the future Hockey Hall of Fame member had put in nearly 19 seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs, skated with four Stanley Cup champions, and played more games than any defenseman in National Hockey League history. And he was different from any hockey player I had met.

The Rangers were a moribund team, and Emile Francis, the coach and general manager, wanted to shake it up by bringing in established players, even if past their prime, hoping that some of their class would rub off on the underachievers. Enter the 40-year-old Tim Horton. His age set him apart, but so did his demeanor. In the rough-and-tumble NHL back then, Tim stood out as a clean player. He was a blocky 5-foot-10-inches, 185 pounds, and he didn't have to spear you with his stick. He'd just wrap you up with a great bearhug move. His style brought praise even from the stars he shut down, like the great Bobby Hull.

Tim and I quickly became friendly. He told me that he and his wife, Lori, were looking for a nice place to live. Emile Francis was afraid of the big city and its distractions for players, so he set up a hockey enclave on Long Island's suburban South Shore in Long Beach, where wooden-shingled summer homes in the area, often deserted in winter, could be had for a good price during the hockey season. With half of the team making less than $40,000 a season, the players were eager to rent them.

Tim said his priority was finding a good school district for the couple's four daughters. Long Beach wasn't an academic stronghold, so my wife, Roz, put Lori in touch with a real-estate agent near where we lived on Long Island's North Shore, and the Hortons found a ranch house in the upscale village of Manhasset, where the schools were excellent.

Tim and Lori took us out to dinner to say thanks, and as they spoke about the school system and shopping, I was struck by how little Tim seemed like the average athlete of that time—and certainly not like the average NHL player, who tended not to have a high-school diploma, disliked big cities, and returned to Canada after the season. The Hortons intended to live in New York year-round.

During the dinner, Tim pulled out his wallet and produced a business card. It read "President Tim Donut Ltd." He said that in Canada there were 18 Tim Horton Donut shops (as the company was then known). When I mentioned Dunkin' Donuts, Tim shook his head: "Mine are so much better." He was proud that some of the restaurants' food combinations had been his idea.

Lori struck me as a nervous sort. She asked questions throughout dinner and seemed unsettled about the New York move. It was understandable—the couple had spent half a lifetime in Toronto, where Tim Horton was revered, and now they were moving into an uncertain future. Her caution turned out to be wise: Tim played the tail-end of 1969-70 and the full 1970-71 season with the Rangers, but trades took him first to the Pittsburgh Penguins and then the Buffalo Sabres.

His franchise business had blossomed Canada-wide, but the old pro was helping a young, on-the-rise Buffalo team. In February 1974, the Sabres played a game in Toronto and left on the team bus to return home. Tim had permission to come back on his own. He drove a customized sports car that had been a gift from the Sabres' general manager when Tim signed with the club. Reports varied on what happened, but this much seems clear: The car was traveling at more than 100 miles an hour; Tim had a high blood-alcohol level; and he had taken painkillers after being hit in the jaw in practice a few days before. He died in a one-car crash in St. Catharines, Ontario.

After Tim's death, Lori sold her share of the doughnut business to his partner for $1 million. As time went by and Tim Hortons became one of the largest franchises in Canada, with thousands of stores, she sued, claiming that she had been defrauded. Lori lost the suit in the 1990s; she died in 2000.

The Tim Horton story has no happy ending, and the company that bears his name does little to acknowledge him. But I remember Tim and Lori as a pair of engaging, intelligent people and one of the first hockey families I came to know. Once the Burger King Worldwide deal goes through, I'll stop by one of the dozen Tim Hortons shops in New York City and raise a cup of coffee to his memory.

Water --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water

I envision a Disney cartoon with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck tugging on hydrogen and oxygen atoms to tear them away from their covalent bonds.

"Hydrogen production breakthrough could herald cheap green energy," PhysOrg, September 12, 2014 ---

"Germany and Canada Are Building Water Splitters to Store Renewable Energy:  Improving technology is making electrolysis a viable way to store excess renewable energy," by Kevin Bullis, MIT Technology Review, August 27, 2014 ---

Maybe the Japanese were right all along to place their bets on fuel cell vehicles
"Scientists develop a water splitter that runs on an ordinary AAA battery," PhysOrg, August 22, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
In theory fuel cells may eventually replace big electric power plants and those ugly transmission lines vulnerable to wind and ice.

Elaboration of the Citi Bank Tax Court Ruling on Frequent Flyer Points (er read that "Thank You Points.")

"Tax Court Says Bank 'Thank You' Points Are Taxable Income" by Tony Nitti, Forbes, August 28, 2014 ---

"Tax Court Approves the IRS's Taxation of Frequent Flyer Miles," by Paul Caron, TaxProf Blog, August 27, 2014 ---

The Tax Court yesterday required the taxpayer to include $668 in income as reported by Citibank on Form 1099-MISC as the value of an airline ticket received by the taxpayer upon redemption of 50,000 "Thank You Points" from opening a Citibank account. Shankar v. Commissioner, 143 T.C. No. 5 (Aug. 26, 2014).

Jensen Comment
Credit card holders seeking frequent flyer miles are now getting hit with a double whammy. Firstly, the airlines are making you accumulate more miles for those "free" trips. Secondly, the IRS is going to charge you a tax on using certain types of  "thank you points."

Meanwhile the cash back deals just keep getting better and better relative to frequent flyer miles. Sam's Club just sent me a free Mastercard that pays back 5% at the gas pump and a minimum of 1% on other purchases. Some purchases give 2% back. What;s going to become of these deals in new IRS rulings?

Life in the 21st Century gets more and more complicated.

40 maps that explain the Roman Empire ---

Jensen's added accounting trivia on the Roman Empire

  1. The concept of depreciation dates back to Roman times and maybe earlier, which must have been difficult without division by Arabic numerals.

  2. Scandals involving some types of derivatives date back to Roman times when Romans used option contracts. Over the years there have been many scandals where one party takes advantage of another party to the contract.

"From Flappers to Hipsters 100 years of mesmerizing, terrifying, cringe-inducing youth icons.," by Nick Gillespie, Reason Magazine, August 26, 2014 ---

From the CFO Journal's Morning Ledger on August 28, 2014

Currency spat strands Venezuela fliers ---

With Venezuela holding back on releasing $3.8 billion in airline-ticket revenue because of strict currency controls, Delta Air Lines Inc., American Airlines and other airlines have slashed service to Venezuela by half since January. The flights that are left are too expensive for many Venezuelans to afford, with economy-class tickets to New York easily topping $3,000, six times the price of a year ago.

Fees = Transactions Costs (when buying or selling shares) plus Fund Management Fees (paid annually to professionals who manage your portfolio like the managers at TIAA/CREF, Fidelity, Vanguard, etc.). manage your retirement funds.

Taxes = Capital Gains Taxes (that apply even on retirement funds like CREF when you make eventual withdrawals). Note that capital gains taxes must be paid by your estate on the balances left in your retirement funds. Most of us won't get hit with estate taxes (due to high estate tax exemptions), but we all get hit with capital gains taxes on the retirement funds and farms we leave behind for heirs.

Inflation = Loss in Buying Power of Saving Dear Money That Turns Into Cheap Money (even under your mattress)
The government is now misleading us about inflation by taking price increases for food and fuel out of its reported  inflation index so you think that your dollars are still dear when they are cheap in terms of things that you buy day-by-day. Economists are whores for politicians. Government deficit spending and obligations for $100 trillion in unfunded entitlements (like Medicare and Medicaid) make inflation the biggest worry of the three diseases on retirement savings --- fees, taxes, and inflation.

"Here's How Little You Earn On Stocks After You Pay The Man, Uncle Sam, And The Invisible Hand," by Myles Udland, Business Insider, August 29, 2014 ---

Fees, taxes, and even inflation just kill your investment returns.

A Thornburg Investment Management study of "real, real returns," which was alerted to us by Cullen Roche at Pragmatic Capitalism, shows how various costs eat into your stock market returns. 

Real, real returns take into account expenses (the man), taxes (Uncle Sam), and inflation (the invisible hand).

Thornburg's study notes that "nominal returns are a misleading driver of an investor's investment and asset-allocation planning... because they are significantly eroded by taxes, expenses and inflation." The risk then, as Thornburg sees it, is that a failure to understand real, real returns could lead to investment decisions that miss potential diversification opportunities. 

This chart from Thornburg shows how the annualized nominal return of $100 invested in the S&P 500 between 1983 and 2013 is about 11%, making that investment worth $2,346.

However, on a real, real basis that investment returns 6%, making it worth just $570.

A pretty stark difference between expectations and reality.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/thornburgs-real-real-equity-returns-2014-8#ixzz3BsAo2wrR

Jensen Comment
There are ways of partly beating the tax man by investing a portion of your retirement funds in a tax-exempt mutual fund that holds bonds of school districts, towns, cities, counties, and states. However, I say "partly beats" in the sense that value changes in those funds are subject to capital gains taxes even if the interest on those bonds that builds up your savings are not taxed while your earn that interest or when you withdraw that interest. A second  drawback is that there is relatively more risk in investing in a given tax-free municipal bond versus a taxable high-grade corporate bond. But huge diversified tax-free mutual funds like those of Fidelity and Vanguard. A third drawback in theory is that tax-free bonds should earn less interest than corporate bonds. This is not always the case in this era of stupid quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve that keeps interest rates on CDs and high-grade corporate bonds close to zero. Tax-free interest rates have held up batter in this idiotic era of quantitative easing since the crash of 2007.

Remember that higher return investments also carry higher financial risks beyond the savings killers of fees, taxes, and inflation. For example land investments have less inflation risks but are subject to many other financial risks. For example, think of paying a million dollars for an Iowa farm that sold ten years ago $500,000 and doubled in value because of the corn ethanol government mandate for gasoline. The added financial risk for your new farm is that one day soon the government will come to its senses and remove the ethanol mandate for fuel, thereby leaving the corn for cows and hogs. Your million dollar farm may plunge in value --- thus the added investment risk beyond the retirement savings killers of fees, taxes, and inflation.

Bob Jensen's Personal Finance Helpers ---

"C.S. Lewis on True Friendship," by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, September 2014 ---

"5 Little-Known Ways To Save Money On Amazon ," by Grayson Bell, Debt Roundup via Business Insider, August  29, 2014 ---

Jensen Comment
If you are an active buyer like me on Amazon it probably pays to become a Prime member.

One advantage of living in the boon docks is home delivery when you're not at home. I know the rural mail carrier (Mary), the UPS driver (Joe), and the FedEx drivers all by name. They leave the deliveries in our unlocked garage in rain, snow, or shine. When I lived in San Antonio I would've not dared to leave our garage unlocked. City living is just more scary and a hassle in many other ways.

Don't forget to use your accumulated payment credits on Amazon. Amazon makes it really easy to use those points when making a payment.

Bob Jensen's Personal Finance Helpers ---

October Econometrics Reading List from David Giles ---

In North America, Labo(u)r Day weekend is upon us. The end of summer. Back to school. Last chance to get some pre-class reading done!

"The criminalisation of American business:  Companies must be punished when they do wrong, but the legal system has become an extortion racket," The Economist, August 30, 2014 ---

WHO runs the world’s most lucrative shakedown operation? The Sicilian mafia? The People’s Liberation Army in China? The kleptocracy in the Kremlin? If you are a big business, all these are less grasping than America’s regulatory system. The formula is simple: find a large company that may (or may not) have done something wrong; threaten its managers with commercial ruin, preferably with criminal charges; force them to use their shareholders’ money to pay an enormous fine to drop the charges in a secret settlement (so nobody can check the details). Then repeat with another large company.

The amounts are mind-boggling. So far this year, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and other banks have coughed up close to $50 billion for supposedly misleading investors in mortgage-backed bonds. BNP Paribas is paying $9 billion over breaches of American sanctions against Sudan and Iran. Credit Suisse, UBS, Barclays and others have settled for billions more, over various accusations. And that is just the financial institutions. Add BP’s $13 billion in settlements since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Toyota’s $1.2 billion settlement over alleged faults in some cars, and many more.

In many cases, the companies deserved some form of punishment: BNP Paribas disgustingly abetted genocide, American banks fleeced customers with toxic investments and BP despoiled the Gulf of Mexico. But justice should not be based on extortion behind closed doors. The increasing criminalisation of corporate behaviour in America is bad for the rule of law and for capitalism (see article).

No soul, no body? No problem

Until just over a century ago, the idea that a company could be a criminal was alien to American law. The prevailing assumption was, as Edward Thurlow, an 18th-century Lord Chancellor of England, had put it, that corporations had neither bodies to be punished nor souls to be condemned, and thus were incapable of being “guilty”. But a case against a railway in 1909, for disobeying price controls, established the principle that companies were responsible for their employees’ actions, and America now has several hundred thousand rules that carry some form of criminal penalty. Meanwhile, ever since the 1960s, civil “class-action suits” have taught managers the wisdom of seeking rapid, discreet settlements to avoid long, expensive and embarrassing trials.

The drawbacks of America’s civil tort system are well known. What is new is the way that regulators and prosecutors are in effect conducting closed-door trials. For all the talk of public-spiritedness, the agencies that pocket the fines have become profit centres: Rhode Island’s bureaucrats have been on a spending spree courtesy of a $500m payout by Google, while New York’s governor and attorney-general have squabbled over a $613m settlement from JPMorgan. And their power far exceeds that of trial lawyers. Not only are regulators in effect judge and jury as well as plaintiff in the cases they bring; they can also use the threat of the criminal law.

Financial firms rarely survive being indicted on criminal charges. Few want to go the way of Drexel Burnham Lambert or E.F. Hutton. For their managers, the threat of personal criminal charges is career-ending ruin. Unsurprisingly, it is easier to empty their shareholders’ wallets. To anyone who asks, “Surely these big firms wouldn’t pay out if they knew they were innocent?”, the answer is: oddly enough, they might.

Perhaps the most destructive part of it all is the secrecy and opacity. The public never finds out the full facts of the case, nor discovers which specific people—with souls and bodies—were to blame. Since the cases never go to court, precedent is not established, so it is unclear what exactly is illegal. That enables future shakedowns, but hurts the rule of law and imposes enormous costs. Nor is it clear how the regulatory booty is being carved up. Andrew Cuomo, the governor of New York, who is up for re-election, reportedly intervened to increase the state coffers’ share of BNP’s settlement by $1 billion, threatening to wield his powers to withdraw the French bank’s licence to operate on Wall Street. Why a state government should get any share at all of a French firm’s fine for defying the federal government’s foreign policy is not clear.

I’ll see you in court—in another life

The best thing would be for at least some of these cases to go to proper trial: then a few of the facts would spill out. That is hardly in the interests of the regulators or their managerial prey, but shareholders at least should push for that. Two senators, Elizabeth Warren and Tom Coburn, have put forward a bill to make the terms of such settlements public, which would be a start. Prosecutors and regulators should also be required to publish the reasons why, given the gravity of their initial accusations, they did not take the matter all the way to court.

In the longer term, two changes are needed to the legal system. The first is a much clearer division between the civil and criminal law when it comes to companies. Most cases of corporate malfeasance are to do with money and belong in civil courts. If in the course of those cases it emerges that individual managers have broken the criminal law, they can be charged.

Continued in article

"DOJ To Give Money From Bank Of America Settlement To Liberal Activist Groups," Yahoo News, August 22, 2014 ---

The groups benefitting from the lawsuit, according to Investor’s Business Daily, are the National Council of La Raza, Operation Hope, National Community Reinvestment Coalition, and Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America. The money also went to “delinquent borrowers” in Chicago, Oakland, Detroit, Philadelphia, and other major “Democrat strongholds.”

“This is a wealth redistribution scheme disguised as a lawsuit,” Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, told The Daily Caller. “And who benefits from the distribution? Interest groups the administration relies on, outside interest groups, allies and politicians in communities trying to benefit as well.”

Fitton noted that these liberal groups are basically what’s left of the Association of Community Organization for Reform Now (ACORN) network, and that President Barack Obama has ties to ACORN.

“You have La Raza that’s getting money, their former head is at the White House in a top position whose funding from the Census has gone up immensely under the Obama administration,” Fitton said.

La Raza, Operation Hope, National Community Reinvestment Coalition, and Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America have all intimidated banks to give loans to minorities, even if they can’t afford to pay them back.

This is part of an ongoing scheme in which the DOJ puts the money it has gotten from bank settlementsin a slush fund and then funneled the money to liberal groups. Judicial Watch points out that liberal groups — many of which are the same ones benefiting from this lawsuit — also received money from multi-billion settlements from JP Morgan Chase and Citibank, as well as a $335 million settlement from Countrywide Financial Corporation.

“What we need is an honest Justice Department run by people who make a commitment to the rule of law rather using their power to extort and benefit more government and their political allies.” Fitton said. “This is no better than Tammany Hall.”

Jensen Comment

It cost Bank of America $17 billion to do a favor for 2007 Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson who was stuck with the dastardly Countrywide Financial and all its poisoned mortgages. Until then BofA had no poisoned mortgages and really did not want to acquire Countrywide's mess.
According to Ken Lewis Secretary Paulson committed extortion by threatening the job of Ken Lewis who was then CEO of BofA. All the criminal activity was done at Countrywide before it was acquired by BofA. The same can be said of Merrill Lynch that was also forced on BofA with arm twisting, although Merrill Lynch was more involved in the poisoned CDO rackets.
Then the government's DOJ in 2014 turned around and sued BoA for Countrywide's misdeeds so  the DOJ could support its liberal causes in the name of "justice." It cost BofA $17 billion to do a favor for the ungrateful government.
And the beat goes on so to speak.
It's hard to feel sorry for the bailed out banks, but in fairness BofA did not need to be bailed out until the government forced it to acquire Countrywide and Merrill Lynch. Most of the other big banks, however, needed bailing out with almost a trillion in government loans.

"Welcome to the new capitalism," by Star Parker, Townhall, May 4, 2009 --- http://townhall.com/columnists/StarParker/2009/05/04/welcome_to_the_new_capitalism 

Frank recently praised Bank of America chairman (now ex-chairman) Ken Lewis for acting in "the public interest" for caving in to bribes and threats from former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke regarding B of A's takeover of Merrill Lynch.

Lewis wanted to back out the deal last year when he discovered the massive scope of Merrill's losses. But Paulson and Bernanke decided that Merrill shouldn't fail, so they bribed Lewis with $20 billion of taxpayer funds, instructed him to conceal the agreement from his shareholders, and told him his job would be on the line if he didn't play ball -- which he did.

These sordid details have come to light in an investigation being conducted by New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.

So if such behavior is what Barney Frank calls economic patriotism, what might constitute subversive behavior?

When Congress moved last year to politically engineer changes in terms of existing mortgages in the name of bailing out distressed homeowners, Bill Frey, who manages a fund that holds mortgage-backed securities, protested.

Frey told the New York Times, "Any investor in mortgage-backed securities has a right to insist that their contract be enforced."

Contracts? Private property? That's the old capitalism.

Frank fired off a letter to Frey saying he was "outraged...that you are actively opposing our efforts to achieve diminution in foreclosures by voluntary efforts." Frank then clarified his idea of "voluntary" by summoning Frey to testify in Washington, noting that "if this cannot be arranged on a voluntary basis, then we will pursue further steps."

The House has passed legislation, which is now in the Senate, containing Frank's idea of "diminution in foreclosures by voluntary efforts." It amounts to -- what a surprise -- taxpayer funded bribes to abrogate existing mortgage contracts and provisions for legal protection for doing so.

Frey and others managing funds for investors holding billions in mortgage-backed securities are fighting back. We're not talking Bernie Madoff here. We're talking about funds that have invested in these securities on behalf of pension funds and 401Ks.

Financial institutions -- banks like B of A and Wells Fargo -- originate mortgages and then sell them off to be sliced and diced up into bonds that individual investors can purchase. This financial innovation has been a boon for providing capital and liquidity to our mortgage markets.

The originating bank, however, stays in the picture to service the loan, collecting and processing the payments. Contractual agreements exist between the bank and the bondholders that this will be done in good faith, according to the terms of the original mortgage.

For a host of reasons, mostly massive government meddling and social engineering, the mortgage market exploded and thus, we've got homeowners who can't make payments.

The House passed bill proposes to bail these folks out by paying banks servicing the mortgages $1000 for each one they re-finance, cutting interest rates and payments. Those who actually own the loans -- the bondholders -- are left out to pasture. And, the bill protects servicing banks from lawsuits to which they would normally be exposed for breaking their contracts.

So taxpayers will subsidize banks to refinance the bad loans they originated but no longer own, homeowners who borrowed beyond their means get bailed out, and investors -- the bondholders -- are left to bear the costs. On top of this, many of these same banks originated second mortgages on these same homes. The second mortgages, which the banks still own, bear even higher interest rates because they are allegedly more risky. Yet, they will be left secure and undisturbed.

Aside from the costs that our society will bear as law and contracts no longer have meaning, Frey rightly points out that it all will just make future mortgage borrowing more expensive. Who will take risks to lend when politicians can change contracts at the drop of a hat?

Welcome to the new capitalism. Where politicians rule, irresponsible behavior is rewarded, and theft is legal.

"Busting Bank of America:  A case study in how to spread systemic financial risk," The Wall Street Journal, April 27, 2009 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124078909572557575.html

The cavalier use of brute government force has become routine, but the emerging story of how Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke forced CEO Ken Lewis to blow up Bank of America is still shocking. It's a case study in the ways that panicky regulators have so often botched the bailout and made the financial crisis worse.

In the name of containing "systemic risk," our regulators spread it. In order to keep Mr. Lewis quiet, they all but ordered him to deceive his own shareholders. And in the name of restoring financial confidence, they have so mistreated Bank of America that bank executives everywhere have concluded that neither Treasury nor the Federal Reserve can be trusted.

Mr. Lewis has told investigators for New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo that in December Mr. Paulson threatened him not to cancel a deal to buy Merrill Lynch. BofA had discovered billions of dollars in undisclosed Merrill losses, and Mr. Lewis was considering invoking his rights under a material adverse condition clause to kill the merger. But Washington decided that America's financial system couldn't withstand a Merrill failure, and that BofA had to risk its own solvency to save it. So then-Treasury Secretary Paulson, who says he was acting at the direction of Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke, told Mr. Lewis that the feds would fire him and his board if they didn't complete the deal.

Mr. Paulson told Mr. Lewis that the government would provide cash from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) to help BofA swallow Merrill. But since the government didn't want to reveal this new federal investment until after the merger closed, Messrs. Paulson and Bernanke rejected Mr. Lewis's request to get their commitment in writing.

"We do not want a disclosable event," Mr. Lewis says Mr. Paulson told him. "We do not want a public disclosure." Imagine what would happen to a CEO who said that.

After getting the approval of his board, Mr. Lewis executed the Paulson-Bernanke order without informing his shareholders of the material events taking place at Merrill. The merger closed on January 1. But investors and taxpayers had to wait weeks to learn that the government had invested another $20 billion plus loan portfolio insurance in BofA, and that Merrill had lost a staggering $15 billion in the last three months of 2008.

This was the second time in three months that Washington had forced Bank of America to take federal money. In his testimony to the New York AG's office, Mr. Lewis noted that an earlier TARP investment in his bank had a "dilutive effect" on existing shareholders and was not requested by BofA. "We had not sought any funds. We were taking 15 [billion dollars] at the request of Hank [Paulson] and others," Mr. Lewis testified.

But it is the Merrill deal that raises the most troubling questions. Evaluating the policy of Messrs. Bernanke and Paulson on their own terms, this transaction fundamentally increased systemic risk. In order to save a Wall Street brokerage, the feds spread the risk to one of the country's largest deposit-taking banks. If they were convinced that Merrill had to be saved, then they should have made the public case for it. And the first obligation of due diligence is to make sure that their Merrill "rescuer" of choice -- BofA -- had the capacity to bear the losses. Instead they transplanted the Merrill risk to BofA shareholders, the bank's depositors and the taxpayers who ensure those deposits. And then they had to bail out BofA too.

Messrs. Bernanke and Paulson also undermined the transparency that is a vital source of investor confidence. Disclosure is not a luxury to be enjoyed only when markets are rising. It is the foundation of the American regulatory system and a reason investors have long sought to keep their money within U.S. borders. Could either man have believed that their actions wouldn't eventually come to light, with all of the repercussions for their bank rescue plans?

Mr. Paulson told Mr. Cuomo's investigators that he also kept former SEC Chairman Christopher Cox out of the loop while forcing BofA to rescue Merrill. Mr. Cox wasn't the only one. Mr. Paulson and Mr. Bernanke both sit on the Financial Stability Oversight Board, comprised of federal regulators who oversee TARP. Two days after Mr. Lewis told the dynamic duo that Merrill's losses were exploding and that he was looking for a way out, Mr. Bernanke chaired and Mr. Paulson attended a meeting of this board. Minutes of the meeting show no mention of BofA or Merrill.

At the next meeting on January 8, a week after the merger had closed, the minutes again make no mention of either regulator telling their colleagues that they had committed tens of billions of dollars. Yet the minutes helpfully note that among the topics discussed were "coordination, transparency and oversight."

Meeting minutes suggest Messrs. Bernanke and Paulson finally informed fellow board members at 4:30 p.m. on January 15, after news outlets had already reported a pending new taxpayer investment in BofA. What exactly did Mr. Bernanke and Mr. Paulson tell their colleagues about their plans for TARP prior to January 15?

Let's hope they treated their government colleagues better than they've treated Ken Lewis, whom they hung out to dry. After making him an offer he could hardly refuse, they've let him endure a public flogging from shareholders and the press, lengthy discussions with prosecutors, plus new hiring and compensation rules that limit his bank's ability to compete.

No wonder no banker in his right mind trusts the Fed or Treasury, and no wonder nobody but Pimco and other Treasury favorites is eager to invest in the TALF, the PPIP, or any of the other programs that require trusting the government as a business partner.

The political class has spent the last few months blaming bankers for everything that has gone wrong in the financial system, and no doubt many banks have earned public scorn. But Washington has been complicit every step of the way, from the Fed's easy money to the nurturing of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and since last autumn with regulatory and Congressional panic that is making financial repair that much harder. The men who nearly ruined Bank of America have some explaining to do.

Jensen Comment

It is interesting to compare the song Ken Lewis was singing before the purchase of Merrill Lynch versus the song he's now singing about "his" burdening BofA with the billions of Merrill Lynch's toxic investments. You can watch and hear him literally brag that BofA was in stronger shape than all the other large U.S. banks because it sold most of its sub-prime mortgages to other buyers (like Fannie, Freddie, and Merrill Lynch) rather than to retain BofA ownership of such poison. Note his bragging in an interview on CBS Sixty Minutes on October 19, 2009.

I watched the show on October 19, 2008, in a CBS Sixty Minutes TV module, when Leslie Stahl interviewed the CEO of Bank of America, Ken Lewis. Mr. Lewis was charming and forceful when he bragged heavily that BofA was much stronger than the other failing banks and was only accepting some Bailout money as a “patriotic duty.” He said BofA really had no need for Bailout cash since his truly giant international bank was in such strong shape even after the subprime scandal first made the news.

Belatedly, Ken Lewis is claiming that the U.S. Treasury Department and Federal Reserve teamed up against him and forced him to take on the billions of Merrill Lynch's poison. If this was indeed the case, it would've been a great opportunity for Mr. Lewis to make a public stand against the near-ruination of BofA. Think of what a hero he would've become in the eyes of BofA shareholders and if he would've drawn a line and dared Paulson to fire him for refusing to BofA shareholders to gulp down Merrill Lynch poison.

My guess is that Paulson would've instead sweetened the deal by having the government dilute Merrill Lynch poison such as by making BofA liable for 15% of Merrill Lynch's subprime and CDO losses.

After the purchasing Merrill Lynch, the sour grapes cry baby Ken Lewis does not come across as having CEO quality and guts!

Bob Jensen's threads on all this bank bailout stupidity are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/2008Bailout.htm#BailoutStupidity



From the Scout Report on August 29, 2014

Privacy.IO --- https://privacy.io/ 

Web privacy is big news. This affordable Virtual Private Network (VPN) service promises to “give you your privacy back.” How does it work? Privacy.IO encrypts your data so that when you connect to your Internet Service Provider (ISP), your usage remains untraceable. You have full anonymity, with no logs kept. All operating systems are supported, including Windows, Apple, and Linux.  

Remind: Safe Classroom Communication --- https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/remind-safe-classroom-communication/id522826277?mt=8 

Not just for teachers! This handy app allows organizers of all kinds to send safe, easy, and free one-way messages to groups and individuals. Phone numbers are kept private. Teachers, coaches, club leaders, and others use the service to schedule reminders, assignments, homework, assessments, and motivational messages directly to students’, parents’, and group members’ phones. This app is designed for iPhone and iPad users running iOS 6.0 or later.

Mysteries of the Maya Unearthed Deep in the Yucatan Jungle
Two Ancient Mayan Cities Discovered Deep in Mexican Jungle

Two ancient Mayan cities discovered deep in the Mexican jungle – and the
secretes they hold

Ancient Maya Cities Found in Jungle

Two ancient Maya cities discovered in the jungle of southeastern Mexico

El Mirador, the Lost City of the Maya

Maya: Facts & Summary

From the Scout Report on September 5, 2014

Insight Timer --- https://insighttimer.com/ 

What with the hundreds of new studies on meditation being published every year, more and more people are practicing around the world for stress relief, emotional regulation, and a number of physical complaints. This convenient app can be downloaded to your Android, iPhone, or iPad for free. Equipped with beautiful bells, the timer can be set for anywhere from one minute to 24 hours. The app also displays a map of the world, showing where users are currently meditating.

Intellinote --- http://www.intellinote.net/ 

Intellinote is designed for anyone who works in teams. Utilizing a blend of project management structures, online discussion, and collaborative note taking, this innovative app builds seamless, team-oriented projects out of convenient, shareable "workspaces." Best of all, it’s completely free for teams of up to five. Intellinote supports Windows and Apple systems and is compatible with iOS for iPhone and iPad, as well as Android.

Bill and Melinda Gates Donate $1 Million to Gun Control
Bill Gates and his wife give $1 million to gun control push

Bill, Melinda Gates Donate $1 Million to Gun Control Campaign

Bill Gates donates $1 million to US gun control campaign

Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility

History of gun-control legislation

10 Big Questions in the U.S. Gun Control Debate

From the Scout Report on September 12, 2014

Adblock Plus --- https://adblockplus.org 

As far as the staff at Scout is concerned, ads are the bitter cup of the web surfing experience. Enter Adblock Plus, a free browser extension that 300 million users have already downloaded. This handy installation blocks ads all over the web, including YouTube and Facebook. Compatible with Safari, Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer.

Hyperlapse --- https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hyperlapse-from-instagram/id740146917?mt=8 

In a world of great apps, Hyperlapse, released last week by Instagram, is unique – even amazing. A few years ago, professional photographers needed backpacks worth of equipment to shoot time lapse videos. Now, with this image stabilizing technology, you can create high quality time lapse videos from your iPhone. That’s pretty special. This app requires iOS 7.0 and is not yet available for Android.

Jack the Ripper Finally (Mis)Identified?
Jack the Ripper ‘identified in new book’

126 years later, notorious serial killer Jack the Ripper ID’d?

Case Solved on Jack the Ripper? Not So Fast

Jack the Ripper murder mystery: Polish immigrant was NOT the killer, says
expert on notorious murders

Jack the Ripper - Metropolitan Police Service

Jack the Ripper: Accused hairdresser Aaron Kosminski only the latest in a
long line of suspects


Free online textbooks, cases, and tutorials in accounting, finance, economics, and statistics --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm#Textbooks

Education Tutorials

150 MOOCS Getting Started in September: Enroll in One Today --- 
Also see Bob Jensen's threads on MOOCs at 
Aspen Institute: Skills for America's Future --- 
Forces of Nature: National Geographic Education --- 
CurioCity: Articles (covering a wide variety of topics) --- http://www.explorecuriocity.org/Articles.aspx 

Technology Integration (integrating education technology into the classroom) ---  http://www.edutopia.org/technology-integration

Digital Humanities Tool Box --- http://www.scoop.it/t/digital-humanities-tool-box

Geography: Maps, Country Information, Quizzes --- http://geography.about.co

American Association of Community Colleges --- http://www.aacc.nche.edu

Community College Research Center --- http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/ 

IMF Center: EconEd Online (economics learning helpers) --- https://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/center/econed/

"iPad Apps for the Classroom," by George Williams, Chronicle of Higher Education, February 4, 2014 ---

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

Bob Jensen's threads on Tools and Tricks of the Trade --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm

"Parallels Desktop 10: A Smoother Way to Run Windows on Your Mac," by David Pogue, Yahoo Tech, August 28, 2014 ---

The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning --- http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/index

Community College Research Center --- http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/ 

Bob Jensen's threads on general education tutorials are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm#EducationResearch

Echo (history of science and technology) --- http://echo.gmu.edu

Sad message of the January 30, 2004 Week from Carolyn Kotlas [kotlas@email.unc.edu]  


After over thirty years of service, the U.S. Department of Education's ERIC Clearinghouses, and the AskERIC service, permanently closed at the end of December 2003. ERIC is a national information system funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences to provide access to education literature and resources. The Clearinghouses, stationed at various educational institutions, provided documents and reference services on educational topics ranging from Elementary and Early Childhood Education to Urban and Minority Education to Adult, Career, and Vocational Education.

The new ERIC uses one URL (http://www.eric.ed.gov) to:

-- search the ERIC database,

-- access the ERIC Calendar of Education-Related Conferences,

-- link to the ERIC Document Reproduction Service (EDRS) to

purchase ERIC full-text documents, and

-- link to the ERIC Processing and Reference Facility to

purchase ERIC tapes and tools.

ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center) --- http://eric.ed.gov/ 

Community College Research Center --- http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/ 

Continuing Education --- http://www.rand.org/topics/continuing-education.html

Robert R. McCormick Foundation: Resources (tools for teaching and learning) ---

How It Works: 3D Printing with Fused Deposition Modeling --- Click Here

3D Printing Videos --- Search YouTube for 3D Printing --- https://www.youtube.com/ 

Bob Jensen's Threads on Education Technology ---

"A Year of Turkel Tutorials," by Konrad M. Lawson, Chronicle of Higher Education, January 30, 2014 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on education research and teaching helpers ---

Bob Jensen's bookmarks for multiple disciplines ---

Engineering, Science, and Medicine Tutorials

DiracDelta Science & Engineering Encyclopedia --- http://www.diracdelta.co.uk

Echo (history of science and technology) --- http://echo.gmu.edu

MIT's Free Courseware
Global Warming Science
Also see

Understanding the Cosmos

ChemSpider (helpers from the Royal Society of Chemistry) ---  http://www.chemspider.com/

Australia Telescope National Facility --- http://www.atnf.csiro.au/

The Canadian Nuclear FAQ --- http://www.nuclearfaq.ca

Sci Show (videos on how things work) --- https://www.youtube.com/user/scishow

Watch Louisiana's coastline vanish over 80 years ---

Real Climate: Data Sources --- http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/

Botanical Dimensions --- http://botanicaldimensions.org/

Botanical Accuracy --- http://www.botanicalaccuracy.com/

Journal of Psychology and Psychotherapy --- http://omicsonline.org/psychology-psychotherapy.php

Dinosaur News --- http://www.dinosaurnews.org/

Avian Knowledge Network --- http://www.avianknowledge.net/

How Do They Get Caffeine Out of Coffee Beans?

The Mars Society --- http://www.marssociety.org

Bob Jensen's threads on free online science, engineering, and medicine tutorials are at ---

Social Science and Economics Tutorials

Geography: Maps, Country Information, Quizzes --- http://geography.about.co

The State of the World Population 2013: Motherhood in Childhood --- http://www.unfpa.org/swp#ref_state-of-world-population-2013

The Center for Popular Economics: Economics for People, Not Profits (progressive, liberal economics) ---  http://www.populareconomics.org

"The New York Review of (Little Red) Books," by Scott McLemee, Inside Higher Ed, January 30, 2008 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2008/01/30/mclemee 

Late last year, The New York Review of Books ran a full-page advertisement fairly glowing with the warmth of the enthusiasm it projected for work of Bob Avakian. In case that name does not ring a bell, Bob Avakian is Chairman of the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA. Once upon a time, Avakian was a student of Stanley Fish at the University of California at Berkeley; but amidst all the excitement of the late 1960s, the poetry of Milton could not compete with the slogans coming out of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in China, and so a leader of the American masses emerged, even if the masses themselves didn’t notice.

The NYRB ad praised Avakian’s combination of “an unsparing critique of the history and current direction of American society with a sweeping view of world history and the potential for humanity.” It called upon readers to “engage” with his work. As it happens, I was once in a punk rock band with a former Avakianite. (This was back when one of the party’s slogans was “Revolution in the ‘80s – Go For It!”) Having thus already had the opportunity to (as they say) “engage” with Avakian’s work, I will testify that he is, at the very least, prolific and capable of extensive discourse. Nearly all of his writings are based on speeches to the party, and they do go on a bit.

In any case, the content of the full-page proclamation was much less interesting, all in all, than the list of people endorsing it. Among them were a few prominent academics. Cornel West was one of them. Members of the Harvard faculty were among the signatories. Ubiquitous cultural theorist Slavoj Zizek has recently added his name to an online version. The list also includes famous entertainers such as Public Enemy rapper Chuck D and Ricky Lee Jones, the folk-rock chanteuse. (The text and the most recently updated set of signatories can now be found here.)

Without quite endorsing the RCP slogan “Mao More Than Ever,” all of them had “come away from encounters with Avakian provoked and enriched in our own thinking.” Or so the text of the ad put it.

In the weeks since it appeared, a few friends who knew of my longstanding fascination with the Chairman Bob phenomenon asked about the New York Review ad. They were surprised to see it, and wondered whether all these people had actually taken up the cause of Avakianism.

My best guess, rather, was that very few of the signatories had read much Avakian. The abundance and verbosity of his pamphlets would exceed the stamina of any but the most disciplined of revolutionary intellectuals. What probably happened, I surmised, was that party cadres had pointed out various anti-Bush statements by Avakian in order to harvest a bunch of signatures from people who were angered by the course of recent history.

Continued in article


IMF Center: EconEd Online (economics learning helpers) --- https://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/center/econed/

Dialogue Institute of the Southwest (diversity and peace) --- http://www.interfaithdialog.org/

Journal of Psychology and Psychotherapy --- http://omicsonline.org/psychology-psychotherapy.php

Special Collections Research Center: George Washington University Libraries (history and philosophy) --- http://library.gwu.edu/scrc

BBC: The Secret History of Our Streets (United Kingdom) --- http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04bzppg

fruitsinfo.com (luxury food) --- http://www.fruitsinfo.com

Nuclear: Greenpeace International --- http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/campaigns/nuclear/

Chinese Posters --- http://chineseposters.net

The Mars Society --- http://www.marssociety.org

From the Scout Report on September 12, 2014

Jack the Ripper Finally (Mis)Identified?
Jack the Ripper ‘identified in new book’

126 years later, notorious serial killer Jack the Ripper ID’d?

Case Solved on Jack the Ripper? Not So Fast

Jack the Ripper murder mystery: Polish immigrant was NOT the killer, says
expert on notorious murders

Jack the Ripper - Metropolitan Police Service

Jack the Ripper: Accused hairdresser Aaron Kosminski only the latest in a
long line of suspects

Bob Jensen's threads on Economics, Anthropology, Social Sciences, and Philosophy tutorials are at

Law and Legal Studies

Bob Jensen's threads on law and legal studies are at

Math Tutorials

Bob Jensen's threads on free online mathematics tutorials are at

History Tutorials

What Ken Burns' New Film Gets Right—and Wrong—About the Roosevelts ---

Echo (history of science and technology) --- http://echo.gmu.edu

40 maps that explain the Roman Empire ---

Geography: Maps, Country Information, Quizzes --- http://geography.about.co

Yale Launches an Archive of 170,000 Photographs Documenting the Great Depression ---

German Expressionism Collection at The University of Maryland --- http://lib.guides.umd.edu/germanexpressionism

The Center for Popular Economics: Economics for People, Not Profits (progressive, liberal economics) ---  http://www.populareconomics.org

MOMA: Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Japanese Art --- http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hi/te_index.asp?i=10

Pictify (paintings, photographs, and scultures) --- http://www.pictify.com/

Beijing Through Sidney Gamble’s Camera --- http://sites.duke.edu/sidneygamble

Faculty Focus (teaching tools) ---  http://www.facultyfocus.com/

The Canadian Nuclear FAQ --- http://www.nuclearfaq.ca

Chinese Posters --- http://chineseposters.net

The animals that served in the first world war:  in pictures ---

World War I Photographic History in a French Village
Remember Me: The Lost Diggers of Vignacourt --- http://www.awm.gov.au/exhibitions/remember-me/

World War One: The British Library

Centenary of the First World War, 1914-1918 --- http://www.awm.gov.au/1914-1918/

World War (I &II) Propaganda Posters --- http://bir.brandeis.edu/handle/10192/23520

Teach and Learn Wisconsin History --- http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/Content.aspx?dsNav=N:1095

Kafka’s Parable “Before the Law” Narrated by Orson Welles & Illustrated with Great Pinscreen Art ---

Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, And Other Top CEOs Name Their Favorite Books ---

Special Collections Research Center: George Washington University Libraries (history and philosophy) --- http://library.gwu.edu/scrc

BBC: The Secret History of Our Streets (United Kingdom) --- http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04bzppg

The State of the World Population 2013: Motherhood in Childhood --- http://www.unfpa.org/swp#ref_state-of-world-population-2013

Computer --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer

Computer Network --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_network

Computer Science --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_science

Computer Software --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_software

Bob Jensen's threads on open sharing of courseware are at

Cross-Cultural Investigations: Technology and Development (Multicultural Online Education and Open Sharing) ---

Computer History
John Vincent Atanasoff and the Birth of Electronic Digital Computing --- http://jva.cs.iastate.edu/

Silicon Valley --- http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/silicon/

History of Computing
Internet Archive: Computers & Technology --- http://archive.org/details/computersandtechvideos

Great Moments in Computer History: Douglas Engelbart Presents “The Mother of All Demos” (1968) ---

"Forgotten PC history: The true origins of the personal computer --- The PC's back story involves a little-known Texas connection," by Lamont Wood, Computer World, August 8, 2008 --- Click Here

Steve Jobs at the Smithsonian --- http://www.si.edu/Exhibitions/stevejobsputational Science Education Reference Desk --- http://www.shodor.org/refdesk/

From the Scout Report on November 1, 2013

The home of a computer pioneer gets the historic designation nod in
California Steve Jobs' California Homes Gets Historic Designation

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' childhood home in California gets historic

Computer History Museum

Places Wire (urban parks and planning) --- http://placeswire.designobserver.com/zine/100pctbuilt

100 Resilient Cities --- http://100resilientcities.rockefellerfoundation.org/

California State Parks: Office of Historic Preservation

Calisphere: Disasters (in California) --- http://www.calisphere.universityofcalifornia.edu/mapped/disasters/

Hearst Castle

Steve Jobs 1995 Interview

Cornell University: Digital Literacy Resource (student guide to Internet searching and all things digital) --- http://digitalliteracy.cornell.edu/

Making the Macintosh --- http://library.stanford.edu/mac/index.html History of Computing

Wait a while for the audio

From the Scout Report on May 3, 2013

20 years ago, the World Wide Web opened for business
WWW opened to all 20 years ago today; world's first website restored

Team rebuilding world's first website

Hands up if you prefer the world's first website to what's come since

History of the Web: World Wide Web Foundation

Hypertext: Behind the Hype

Five Best Early Internet Ads

Internet History
NSF and the Birth of the Internet (video) --- http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/nsf-net/
How Internet Stuff Works --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob4.htm#Web

Bob Jensen's threads on computing and network security ---

Fluid Interfaces Group: MIT Media Lab (interactions of humans with computers) --- http://fluid.media.mit.edu/

MakeUseOf (technology tips) --- http://www.makeuseof.com/

Cyberdeterrence and Cyberwar --- http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/MG877.html

Digital Forensics and Cyber Security Center at the University of Rhode Island ---

The Art of Swimming, 1587: A Manual with Woodcut Illustrations ---

Foodie Alert: New York Public Library Presents an Archive of 17,000 Restaurant Menus (1851-2008) ---

The Planning and Building of Lauinger Library (Georgetown University) ---

From the Scout Report on August 29, 2014

Mysteries of the Maya Unearthed Deep in the Yucatan Jungle
Two Ancient Mayan Cities Discovered Deep in Mexican Jungle

Two ancient Mayan cities discovered deep in the Mexican jungle – and the
secretes they hold

Ancient Maya Cities Found in Jungle

Two ancient Maya cities discovered in the jungle of southeastern Mexico

El Mirador, the Lost City of the Maya

Maya: Facts & Summary

Jensen Links to Related Ancient Accounting
The Incan Khipu
String, and Knot, Theory of Inca Writing by John Noble Wilford.
Talking Knots of the Incas by Viviano and Davide Domenici.

Bob Jensen's threads on history tutorials are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm
Also see http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm  

Language Tutorials

Bob Jensen's links to language tutorials are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm

Music Tutorials

The Arts in Every Classroom Video Library: Teaching Dance --- http://www.learner.org/libraries/artsineveryclassroom/video3.html

Omaha Indian Music --- http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/connections/omaha-indian-music/

Rock Music Timeline --- http://www.rockmusictimeline.com

Bob Jensen's threads on free music tutorials are at

Bob Jensen's threads on music performances ---

Writing Tutorials

Bob Jensen's helpers for writers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob3.htm#Dictionaries

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

August 27, 2014

August 28, 2014

August 29, 2014

August 30, 2014

September 1, 2014

September 3, 2014

September 3, 2014

September 5, 2014

September 6, 2014

September 9, 2014

September 10, 2014

September 11, 2014

September 12, 2014

September 13, 2014



"Why does the placebo response work in treating depression?" by Andrew Leuchter, PhysOrg, September 11, 20014 ---

"Google Just Bought The Company That Created A Tremor-Stabilizing Spoon," by Rebecca Borison, Business Insider, September 11, 2014 ---

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/company-stabilizes-tremors-with-spoons-acquired-by-google-2014-9#ixzz3D1GtxVBy

A Bit of Humor

The Football Game Coin Toss is a Simple Thing --- Except for the Faltering University of Texas ---
UCLA receives ball to start both halves ---

Johnny Carson's Practical Joke on Joan Rivers - Margaret Thatcher Impressionist (You Tube) ---

Some Guy Tried Robbing A Family Dollar But Left After An Employee Said He Had To Wait Like Everyone Else ---
Some people are just too busy to wait in lines.

Robin Williams as an American Flag --- https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q_L1vLv84vs

2014 Final Conference on Aging ---

David Bowie and Klaus Nomi’s Hypnotic Performance on SNL (1979) ---

It Is Hard To Understand How A Cemetery Raised Its Burial Rates; And Blamed It On The Cost Of 'Living'.


Forwarded by Gene and Joan

Many people had tried.... over time: weightlifters, longshoremen, etc., but nobody could do it.

One day, this scrawny little fellow came into the bar, wearing thick glasses and a polyester suit, and said in a small voice, "I'd like to try the bet."

After the laughter had died down, the bartender said, "OK"; grabbed the lemon; and squeezed away. Then he handed the wrinkled remains of the rind to the little fellow. But the crowd's laughter turned to total silence.... as the man clenched his little fist around the lemon.... and six drops fell into the glass.

As the crowd cheered, the bartender paid the $1,000, and asked the little man, "What do you do for a living? Are you a lumberjack, a weight-lifter, or what?"

The little fellow quietly replied: "I work for the IRS."




Tidbits Archives --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories

Update in 2014
20-Year Sugar Hill Master Plan --- http://www.nccouncil.org/images/NCC/file/wrkgdraftfeb142014.pdf

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/

Online Distance Education Training and Education --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Crossborder.htm
For-Profit Universities Operating in the Gray Zone of Fraud  (College, Inc.) --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm#ForProfitFraud

Shielding Against Validity Challenges in Plato's Cave ---

The Cult of Statistical Significance: How Standard Error Costs Us Jobs, Justice, and Lives ---

How Accountics Scientists Should Change: 
"Frankly, Scarlett, after I get a hit for my resume in The Accounting Review I just don't give a damn"
One more mission in what's left of my life will be to try to change this

What went wrong in accounting/accountics research?  ---

The Sad State of Accountancy Doctoral Programs That Do Not Appeal to Most Accountants ---


Bob Jensen's threads on accounting theory ---

Tom Lehrer on Mathematical Models and Statistics ---

Systemic problems of accountancy (especially the vegetable nutrition paradox) that probably will never be solved ---


World Clock --- http://www.peterussell.com/Odds/WorldClock.php
Facts about the earth in real time --- http://www.worldometers.info/

Interesting Online Clock and Calendar --- http://home.tiscali.nl/annejan/swf/timeline.swf
Time by Time Zones --- http://timeticker.com/
Projected Population Growth (it's out of control) --- http://geography.about.com/od/obtainpopulationdata/a/worldpopulation.htm
         Also see http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultranet/BiologyPages/P/Populations.html
Facts about population growth (video) --- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMcfrLYDm2U
Projected U.S. Population Growth --- http://www.carryingcapacity.org/projections75.html
Real time meter of the U.S. cost of the war in Iraq --- http://www.costofwar.com/ 
Enter you zip code to get Census Bureau comparisons --- http://zipskinny.com/
Sure wish there'd be a little good news today.

Free (updated) Basic Accounting Textbook --- search for Hoyle at

CPA Examination --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cpa_examination
Free CPA Examination Review Course Courtesy of Joe Hoyle --- http://cpareviewforfree.com/

Rick Lillie's education, learning, and technology blog is at http://iaed.wordpress.com/

Accounting News, Blogs, Listservs, and Social Networking ---

Bob Jensen's Threads --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm 
Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

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

Some of Bob Jensen's Tutorials

Accounting program news items for colleges are posted at http://www.accountingweb.com/news/college_news.html
Sometimes the news items provide links to teaching resources for accounting educators.
Any college may post a news item.

Accounting  and Taxation News Sites ---


For an elaboration on the reasons you should join a ListServ (usually for free) go to   http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ListServRoles.htm
AECM (Educators) http://listserv.aaahq.org/cgi-bin/wa.exe?HOME
AECM is an email Listserv list which provides a forum for discussions of all hardware and software which can be useful in any way for accounting education at the college/university level. Hardware includes all platforms and peripherals. Software includes spreadsheets, practice sets, multimedia authoring and presentation packages, data base programs, tax packages, World Wide Web applications, etc.

Over the years the AECM has become the worldwide forum for accounting educators on all issues of accountancy and accounting education, including debates on accounting standards, managerial accounting, careers, fraud, forensic accounting, auditing, doctoral programs, and critical debates on academic (accountics) research, publication, replication, and validity testing.


CPAS-L (Practitioners) http://pacioli.loyola.edu/cpas-l/  (Closed Down)
CPAS-L provides a forum for discussions of all aspects of the practice of accounting. It provides an unmoderated environment where issues, questions, comments, ideas, etc. related to accounting can be freely discussed. Members are welcome to take an active role by posting to CPAS-L or an inactive role by just monitoring the list. You qualify for a free subscription if you are either a CPA or a professional accountant in public accounting, private industry, government or education. Others will be denied access.
Yahoo (Practitioners)  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/xyztalk
This forum is for CPAs to discuss the activities of the AICPA. This can be anything  from the CPA2BIZ portal to the XYZ initiative or anything else that relates to the AICPA.
AccountantsWorld  http://accountantsworld.com/forums/default.asp?scope=1 
This site hosts various discussion groups on such topics as accounting software, consulting, financial planning, fixed assets, payroll, human resources, profit on the Internet, and taxation.
Business Valuation Group BusValGroup-subscribe@topica.com 
This discussion group is headed by Randy Schostag [RSchostag@BUSVALGROUP.COM
FEI's Financial Reporting Blog
Smart Stops on the Web, Journal of Accountancy, March 2008 --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/mar2008/smart_stops.htm

Find news highlights from the SEC, FASB and the International Accounting Standards Board on this financial reporting blog from Financial Executives International. The site, updated daily, compiles regulatory news, rulings and statements, comment letters on standards, and hot topics from the Web’s largest business and accounting publications and organizations. Look for continuing coverage of SOX requirements, fair value reporting and the Alternative Minimum Tax, plus emerging issues such as the subprime mortgage crisis, international convergence, and rules for tax return preparers.
The CAlCPA Tax Listserv

September 4, 2008 message from Scott Bonacker [lister@bonackers.com]
Scott has been a long-time contributor to the AECM listserv (he's a techie as well as a practicing CPA)

I found another listserve that is exceptional -

CalCPA maintains http://groups.yahoo.com/taxtalk/  and they let almost anyone join it.
Jim Counts, CPA is moderator.

There are several highly capable people that make frequent answers to tax questions posted there, and the answers are often in depth.


Scott forwarded the following message from Jim Counts

Yes you may mention info on your listserve about TaxTalk. As part of what you say please say [... any CPA or attorney or a member of the Calif Society of CPAs may join. It is possible to join without having a free Yahoo account but then they will not have access to the files and other items posted.

Once signed in on their Yahoo account go to http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/TaxTalk/ and I believe in top right corner is Join Group. Click on it and answer the few questions and in the comment box say you are a CPA or attorney, whichever you are and I will get the request to join.

Be aware that we run on the average 30 or move emails per day. I encourage people to set up a folder for just the emails from this listserve and then via a rule or filter send them to that folder instead of having them be in your inbox. Thus you can read them when you want and it will not fill up the inbox when you are looking for client emails etc.

We currently have about 830 CPAs and attorneys nationwide but mainly in California.... ]

Please encourage your members to join our listserve.

If any questions let me know.

Hemet, CA
Moderator TaxTalk





Many useful accounting sites (scroll down) --- http://www.iasplus.com/links/links.htm


Bob Jensen's Sort-of Blogs --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/JensenBlogs.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

Some Accounting History Sites

Bob Jensen's Accounting History in a Nutshell and Links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/theory01.htm#AccountingHistory

Accounting History Libraries at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) --- http://www.olemiss.edu/depts/accountancy/libraries.html
The above libraries include international accounting history.
The above libraries include film and video historical collections.

MAAW Knowledge Portal for Management and Accounting --- http://maaw.info/

Academy of Accounting Historians and the Accounting Historians Journal ---

Sage Accounting History --- http://ach.sagepub.com/cgi/pdf_extract/11/3/269

A nice timeline on the development of U.S. standards and the evolution of thinking about the income statement versus the balance sheet is provided at:
"The Evolution of U.S. GAAP: The Political Forces Behind Professional Standards (1930-1973)," by Stephen A. Zeff, CPA Journal, January 2005 --- http://www.nysscpa.org/cpajournal/2005/105/infocus/p18.htm
Part II covering years 1974-2003 published in February 2005 --- http://www.nysscpa.org/cpajournal/2005/205/index.htm 

A nice timeline of accounting history --- http://www.docstoc.com/docs/2187711/A-HISTORY-OF-ACCOUNTING

From Texas A&M University
Accounting History Outline --- http://acct.tamu.edu/giroux/history.html

Bob Jensen's timeline of derivative financial instruments and hedge accounting ---

History of Fraud in America --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/415wp/AmericanHistoryOfFraud.htm
Also see http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Fraud.htm

Bob Jensen's Threads ---

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories

All my online pictures --- http://www.cs.trinity.edu/~rjensen/PictureHistory/


Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob) http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen
190 Sunset Hill Road
Sugar Hill, NH 03586
Phone:  603-823-8482 
Email:  rjensen@trinity.edu