In 2017 my Website was migrated to the clouds and reduced in size.
Hence some links below are broken.
One thing to try if a “www” link is broken is to substitute “faculty” for “www”
For example a broken link
can be changed to corrected link

However in some cases files had to be removed to reduce the size of my Website
Contact me at if you really need to file that is missing 


Tidbits on August 16, 2016
Bob Jensen at Trinity University

Pictorial of a Wedding at the Wentworth Country Club Resort, New Hampshire


Tidbits on August 16, 2016
Scroll Down This Page

Bob Jensen's Tidbits ---

For earlier editions of Fraud Updates go to
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to 
Bookmarks for the World's Library --- 

Bob Jensen's past presentations and lectures ---   

Bob Jensen's Threads ---

Bob Jensen's Home Page is at

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories

Updates from WebMD --- Click Here

Online Video, Slide Shows, and Audio

Michio Kaku on Why Immigrants Are America’s Secret Weapon: They Compensate for Our Mediocre STEM Education & Keep Prosperity Going ---
Jensen Comment
Michio ignores the recent higher proportions of documented and undocumented immigrants have no labor skills. He also fails to note job openings in the USA are scarce in most STEM fields even for candidates with Ph.D. credentials. Medical field STEM work is an exception, especially for clinical experts. Immigrants in non-stem fields often like law, tax accounting, and auditing face enormous barriers due to lack of education and experience  in USA technical  rules and standards. For example, a Chinese auditor might be better off living in China and working for a Big Four firm in China rather than the USA.

Edward Wright Creates a List of His 1,000 Favorite Movies: Watch 10 of Them Free Online ---

How Did Hitler Rise to Power? : New TED-ED Animation Provides a Case Study in How Fascists Get Democratically Elected ---

A Drone’s Eye View of the Ancient Pyramids of Egypt, Sudan & Mexico ---

TED: Talks by Brilliant Women in STEM ---

Bookworm (interviews with authors) ---

James Joyce: An Animated Introduction to His Life and Literary Works ---

22 of the most hilariously bad movies on Netflix ---

Free music downloads ---
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 --- 

Wynton Marsalis Takes Louis Armstrong’s Trumpet Out of the Museum & Plays It Again ---

A Funny Brass Band ---
Thank you Auntie Bev

The (allegedly according to a psychologist) Best Songs to Wake Up to in the Morning ---

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) ---
(online music site) ---
Slacker (my second-favorite commercial-free online music site) ---

Gerald Trites likes this international radio site ---
Songza:  Search for a song or band and play the selection ---
Also try Jango ---
Sometimes this old guy prefers the jukebox era (just let it play through) ---
And I listen quite often to Soldiers Radio Live ---
Also note
U.S. Army Band recordings ---

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

Photographs and Art

Making of the Hudson River School (landscape art) ---

Picturing US History ---

55 Buildings in NYC You Need to See in Your Lifetime ---

Bob Jensen's threads on art history ---

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

The Most Spectacular Moments from the Rio Olympics So Far ---

Hiroshima 71 Years Ago ---

NASA's New Images of Mars ---

Time Magazine:  Best Asbronomy Photographs of 2016 ---

This photojournalist visited a remote arctic research town — here are her stunning photos ---

Gothic Past (Irish history and architecture) ---

The 100 Best Historical Photos of the American Cowboy ---

USA Coast Guard on Its Birthday ---

The Kiss to the Whole World: Klimt and the Vienna Secession (art history) ---

An Illustrated Celebration of Trailblazing Women in Science ---

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 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on libraries ---

Bible Odyssey ---

Remembering the Real Winnie: The World's Most Famous Bear Turns 100 ---

James Joyce: An Animated Introduction to His Life and Literary Works ---

Yes, Rudyard Kipling was a racist, misogynist, and imperialist. He was also a wonderful writer. To simply dismiss him for his prejudices reveals little but cultural ignorance ---

Free Electronic Literature ---
Free Online Textbooks, Videos, and Tutorials ---
Free Tutorials in Various Disciplines ---
Edutainment and Learning Games ---
Open Sharing Courses ---

Now in Another Tidbits Document
Political Quotations on August 16, 2016       

To Whom Does the USA Federal Government Owe Money (the booked obligation of $19+ trillion) ---
The US Debt Clock in Real Time --- 
Remember the Jane Fonda Movie called "Rollover" ---

To Whom Does the USA Federal Government Owe Money (the unbooked obligation of $100 trillion and unknown more in contracted entitlements) ---
The biggest worry of the entitlements obligations is enormous obligation for the future under the Medicare and Medicaid programs that are now deemed totally unsustainable ---

Entitlements are two-thirds of the federal budget. Entitlement spending has grown 100-fold over the past 50 years. Half of all American households now rely on government handouts. When we hear statistics like that, most of us shake our heads and mutter some sort of expletive. That’s because nobody thinks they’re the problem. Nobody ever wants to think they’re the problem. But that’s not the truth. The truth is, as long as we continue to think of the rising entitlement culture in America as someone else’s problem, someone else’s fault, we’ll never truly understand it and we’ll have absolutely zero chance...
Steve Tobak ---

"These Slides Show Why We Have Such A Huge Budget Deficit And Why Taxes Need To Go Up," by Rob Wile, Business Insider, April 27, 2013 ---
This is a slide show based on a presentation by a Harvard Economics Professor.

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

Bob Jensen's threads on entitlements ---

Bob Jensen's health care messaging updates ---

These are the 20 best-selling online Udemy classes of 2016 so far ---

Bob Jensen's threads on fee-based distance education and training programs ---

Bob Jensen's threads on free distance education courses taught in prestigious universities ---

Microsoft just made it way easier to write a research paper with Word ---

Bob Jensen's Helpers for Writers ---

Thieves have figured out a crafty way to break into locked iPhones after stealing them ---
Jensen Comment
You can be clever about blocking them off at the pass.

The students aren’t working all that hard, either. The average college student spends just 2.76 hours a day on schoolwork, for a total of 19.3 hours a week. By contrast, they spend 31 hours a week on socializing and recreation

A Useful Excel Reporting Feature ---

How to Use Excel 2016 for Forecasting ---

Friends, Partners, or Dummies on the Inside Are More Important Than Hacking Skills

A new study suggests many data breaches are caused by insider threats -- whether through malice or accident ---

Jensen Comment
The enormous problem is a disgruntled employee with a key to the kingdom.

From Barry Ritholtz on August 12, 2016

Hermits and Cranks: Lessons from Martin Gardner on Recognizing Pseudoscientists (Scientific American)
See also Martin Gardner’s Signs of a Crank (Skepticblog)

Home Equity Loan ---

From the CFO Journal's Morning Ledger on August 12, 2016

Home equity loans come back to haunt borrowers, banks
The bill is coming due for many homeowners on a type of loan that was widely popular in the run-up to the housing bust, causing a rise in delinquencies at banks. More homeowners are missing payments on their home-equity lines of credit, or Helocs, a type of loan that allows borrowers to withdraw cash from their house to pay for renovations, college tuition or almost any other expense. These loans typically require interest-only payments for the first 10 years, but then principal payments kick in for the next 15 or 20 years. Borrowers who signed up for Helocs in early 2006 were at least 30 days late on $2.8 billion of balances four months after principal payments kicked in this year, according to Equifax  Roughly 840,000 Helocs taken out in 2006 are resetting this year, with principal payments on an additional nearly one million loans expected to hit in 2017.

Reverse Mortgage Calculator ---

Yipes! I'm not tax deductible.

Tax Court Denies Deduction For Professor's DirecTV, Internet & Cell Phone As Part Of His 'Lifelong Burden Of Developing Knowledge' ---

According to the Washington Post one out of every 20 physicians in the USA is Muslim ---

Beta Coefficient ---

Also see

"Do Portfolio Managers Underestimate Risk by Overanalyzing Data? New research questions whether “smart” beta is always smart," by Louise Lee, Insights from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, July 25, 2016 ---

 Criticism of Beta ---

Best States for Rooftop Solar ---

Jensen Comment
There may be some seasonal complications. For example, Alaska is not a good place for solar across the entire year due in part to months without sun in the winter. However, the days with sun are longer in the summer than in other parts of the USA.

Erika and I once stayed at a ski resort in late summer in Alaska. At first we were puzzled by the light poles on the ski slopes. Then the reason why dawned on us. In late summer it did not yet get fully dark at night. But it was way to early for ski season.

Best States for Taxpayer Burdens ---

Jensen Comment
This map does not reflect the changing times in some states like Alaska and North Dakota where the plunge in oil prices will soon clobber taxpayers, especially in Alaska.

For the Wealthiest Colleges, How Many Low-Income Students Are Enough? ---

Jensen Comment
The bad news is that most of the universities supportive of low-income students also do not have programs for majoring in accounting, finance, marketing, and other business disciplines offering great careers. Sure it's possible to major in these fields in graduate school, but getting financing for graduate school is a whole new ball game.

At 3,100 Colleges and Universities
Tuition and Fees, 1998-99 Through 2013-14 ---

What is the Price of College? Total, Net, and Out-of-Pocket Prices by Type of Institution in 2011-12 ---

This report describes three measures of the price of undergraduate education in the 2011–12 academic year: total price of attendance (tuition and living expenses), net price of attendance after all grants, and out-of-pocket net price after all financial aid. It is based on the 2011–12 National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS:12), a nationally representative study of students enrolled in postsecondary institutions in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Students are grouped into four institution types: public 2-year institutions, public 4-year institutions, private nonprofit 4-year institutions, and for-profit institutions at all levels (less-than-2-year, 2-year, and 4-year).

Jensen Comment
Understandably there are wide margins of error. For example, many institutions now offer multiple sections of the same course --- some onsite sections, some online sections, and some hybrid sections with both online and onsite components. Various universities charge the same for all sections. Some charge less for the online sections. Some charge more for the online sections, because due to higher demand the online sections are cash cows.

Although the numbers are still small some universities like the University of Wisconsin and the University of Akron are now offering less expensive competency-based credits where students no longer have to take courses.

And there are wide ranging alternatives for room and board. Almost all campuses now offer various meal plan options that vary in price, choice, and quantities. Students often live off campus at widely varying housing and meal costs.  Even on campus there may be varying room and apartment costs.

And financial aid deals are sometimes so complicated that I'm not certain how financial aid could be factored into this study. For example, colleges vary with respect to work study alternatives. Education in free at the University of the Ozarks but all students must work at least 15 hours per week. Most other colleges have work study for some but not all students.

More and more Ivy League-type universities are charging zero tuition for students from families earning less than $125,000 per year. Hence the cost varies considerably based upon family income.

Some students receive financial aid covering all or part of their room and board costs.

But the data in this study are interesting as broad guidelines of college costs in the USA. College is free in some other countries, but in those nations only a small proportion of students are admitted into the colleges. For example, in Germany taxpayer costs are controlled by only admitting less than 25% of the the students into the German universities.  There's an enormous tradeoff between providing free higher education of great quality (as in Germany) versus free or nearly-free higher education of lesser quality to the masses (as in the USA).

I think the USA is unique in that initiatives are underway in some states like Tennessee to provide universal college education for at least two years. California has had to back down somewhat from its nearly-free community college tuition.

The most misleading statistics in the USA are those that conclude that going to college greatly increases lifetime income. Of course there are numerous and obvious  instances where this is true, especially in lucrative professions where only college graduates are admitted. But the studies that imply going to college increase income for most everybody are highly misleading. The main problem is that such studies confuse correlation with causation. They also confound ability, work ethic, and college degrees.

Many college graduates would earn more income than high school graduates even if those college graduates did earn college degrees. The reason is ability and work ethic combined, in many instances, with family support. Many families have the finances to help their children become entrepreneurs or get job skills such as becoming master mechanics, plumbers, and electricians. For many students college is only a transition period before returning to join the family business such as taking over the family farm or dealership.

Net-Price Calculators Get the Kayak Treatment," by Beckie Supiano, Chronicle of Higher Education, October 9, 2012 ---

Remember when net-price calculators were going to be the next U.S. News & World Report rankings? That’s the comparison that staff members at Maguire Associates, a consulting firm, made a couple of years ago in a paper explaining what the calculators could mean for admissions.

But the calculators, which allow students to estimate what they would pay at a particular college after grants and scholarships, don’t seem to have gained much traction yet. While colleges have been required to post the calculators on their Web sites for nearly a year now, early evidence shows that only about a third of prospective students have tried one out.

The Maguire Associates paper predicted that online aggregators would spring up to allow students to compare their net prices at different colleges, much as lets travelers compare air fares. The prediction has come true: A new Web site, College Abacus, lets students do just that.

Whether this new comparison tool will encourage more prospective students to use the calculators, though, remains to be seen.

Bob Jensen's threads on financial aid in higher education ---

Bob Jensen's threads on higher education controversies are at


Scholarpedia (a cross between Wikipedia and Google Scholar) ---

Google Scholar ---

Wikipedia ---

Bob Jensen's search helpers ---

Bob Jensen's World Library ---

Here's An Illustration of Grade Inflation

"Nearly Half Of Detroit’s Adults Are Functionally Illiterate, Report Finds," Huffington Post, July 8, 2013 ---

Detroit’s population fell by 25 percent in the last decade. And of those that stuck around, nearly half of them are functionally illiterate, a new report finds.

According to estimates by The National Institute for Literacy, roughly 47 percent of adults in Detroit, Michigan — 200,000 total — are “functionally illiterate,” meaning they have trouble with reading, speaking, writing and computational skills. Even more surprisingly, the Detroit Regional Workforce finds half of that illiterate population has obtained a high school degree.

The DRWF report places particular focus on the lack of resources available to those hoping to better educate themselves, with fewer than 10 percent of those in need of help actually receiving it. Only 18 percent of the programs surveyed serve English-language learners, despite 10 percent of the adult population of Detroit speaking English “less than very well.”

Additionally, the report finds, one in three workers in the state of Michigan lack the skills or credentials to pursue additional education beyond high school.

In March, the Detroit unemployment rate hit 11.8 percent, one of the highest in the nation, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last month. There is a glimmer of hope, however: Detroit’s unemployment rate dropped by 3.3 percent in the last year alone.

Continued in article

Jensen Question
Will nearly all the illiterate high school graduates in Detroit get a free college diploma under the proposed "free college" proposal?

My guess is that they will get their college diplomas even though they will still be illiterate, because colleges will graduate them in order to sop up the free taxpayer gravy for their college "education."
Everybody will get a college diploma tied in a blue ribbon.

I doubt that illiteracy is much worse in Detroit than in other large USA cities like Chicago and St Louis.

In Europe less than have the Tier 2 (high school) graduates are even allowed to to to college or free trade schools ---
OECD Study Published in 2014:  List of countries by 25- to 34-year-olds having a tertiary education degree ---

College Readiness Based on ACT College Admission Scores for 2015 by State --

New Hampshire


For other states simply replace the state name in the above URL with the name of the state

Note that often the better students opt for SAT testing rather than ACT testing such that in states that provide an option for SAT or ACT the ACT scores may be biased by not including top students.
Also see

ACT to SAT Conversion ---
Conversion Calculator ---

Jensen Comment
By most any standard imaginable public high schools in the USA are not doing a great job in preparing students for college when college might soon be more than affordable to all students. Community colleges have lowered the admissions bar for almost all students. Do for-profit-universities ever reject any applicant?

I attribute much of the low readiness of Michigan high school graduates to Michigan having the largest average class size in the USA ---

Harvard Business Review:  How Amazon Adapted Its Business Model to India ---

UNC Questions NCAA's Authority in Academic Fraud Case ---

Jensen Comment
This line of defense makes no sense to me. Other universities were punished, sometimes severely, by the NCAA when only one staff member (a coach or a faculty member) cheated for an athlete.

Now UNC wants to avoid any NCAA sanctions when multiple staff members cheated in favor of 1,500 athletes on the grounds that another 1,500 non-athletes took advantage of the fake courses and/or unauthorized grade increases in legitimate courses.

What UNC is saying is telling all other universities is that the best way to let athletes cheat in courses is to make sure that an equal number of non-athletes are also allowed to cheat.

Say what? If UNC wins on this one the NCAA rules on cheating become a joke.

The really, really sad thing is that UNC has not already severely punished its own system for 18 years of fraud and unauthorized grade changes.

Let me pull a Donald Trump here. I hope the affected 3,000 cheaters settle in or out of court for $100 million to be coughed up by UNC.
UNC has to pay to the point of severe pain for 18 years of egregious academic fraud!

Bob Jensen's threads on academic fraud in college athletics are at

"How Clinton’s ‘Free College’ Could Cause a Cascade of Problems," by Scott Carlson and Beckie Supiano, Chronicle of Higher Education, July 27, 2016 ---

Jensen Comment
In Europe only the motivated intellectuals are allowed to go to college. Over half are not given a chance to get a college diploma ---

America is the land of opportunity for all where everybody should get a blue ribbon diploma witn an A+ gpa. It should be unconstitutional to discriminate on the basis of intellectual ability. We should not even demand a photo ID for a free diploma.

How to Lie With Statistics

Lies Politicians Tell Us ---

. . .

Hillary Clinton proclaims almost daily that women receive only 78 percent of the income that men receive. Her message is so misleading as to be dishonest. The 78 percent number is the ratio of women’s to men’s median pay. It does not adjust for occupational and other differences in the work that men and women do. For example, skilled neurosurgeons and football, baseball, and basketball stars are men. Domestic workers and hospital cleaning crews are mainly women. A recent paper by Diana Furchtgott-Roth summarized studies at Cornell and other quality economic departments. When adjustment for occupational differences are considered, the ratio is 92 or 94 percent, not the advertised 78 percent. And the remaining difference may not be due to discrimination. Differences in time in the work force, hours worked, and other factors may play a role.

Two striking facts stand out. The first is that laws require equal pay for equal work. Clinton’s claim that there is great discrimination means that many employers violate the law with impunity. That’s very implausible. Even journalists should be able to understand that. Second, the difference between 78 percent and 92 percent is well known to labor economists and almost certainly to some economists on Clinton’s staff. Do they not tell her? Or does she not want to correct this central message of her campaign?

Economic growth is a major issue in this presidential campaign. Research has done much to uncover the factors that contribute to growth. Secure property rights, rule of law, open markets, and limited trade restrictions all play important roles. But the Trump and Clinton campaign messages are all critical of freer trade. It is false—a lie—to claim that freer trade has hurt us as a nation, as my Hoover colleague David Henderson has pointed out.

It has always been true that some lose as a result of trade agreements. We gave up textile jobs to gain jobs elsewhere, in services for example. Trade agreements including NAFTA raised income in the aggregate and provided some of the funding for retraining displaced workers. Trump is wrong or badly advised to oppose trade agreements and Clinton was badly advised when she shifted her position on the Pacific trade agreement. Of course, the agreements are complicated, so it is always possible to claim that a better agreement for the United States is possible—but it’s not accurate to claim that trade restrictions will benefit Americans.

These are just a few examples of lies and misleading statements that we encounter every day. Clinton lies frequently and Trump shouts a falsehood a day—and probably more—as a major part of his campaign. This is not what citizens of a free country should expect and demand. And these examples are part of a much larger set.

At one time, citizens could count on their officials and candidates to either tell the truth or say nothing. Not any more. Clinton has a long record of neglecting truth. Trump seems not to care about the veracity of his statements. And the media is so much on one side that it mainly looks at the Trump gaffes and does its best to ignore Clinton’s. And most serious of all, it allows the Obama administration to tell the public lies like Americans can keep their health insurance or that global warming is a coming disaster.

No less serious is the failure of politicians to tell us the truth about the promises that they have made that cannot be honored. Careful studies put the cost of government promises for pensions and future healthcare benefits at more than $100 trillion. There is no way that anything close to that amount will be available.

Continued in article

Hillary Clinton slapped with dreaded Washington Post 'Four Pinocchios' rating for false claim about FBI director ---
Also see

101 of Donald Trump's Greatest Lies --- 

... Salon: The Iran Deal Is A Disaster–And Obama Is To Blame ---
Jensen Comment
What makes this significant is that Salon is one of the most liberal, anti-capitalist Websites in the world.

House Task Force Confirms: ISIS Threat Was Altered in Intelligence Reports For Political Purposes ---
Jensen Comment
What makes this significant is that the Daily Beast is one of the most liberal, anti-capitalist Websites in the world.

How to Lie With Statistics

"The Great Productivity Puzzle," by John Cassady, The New Yorker, August 10, 2016 ---

How to Mislead With Statistics

The following two articles show how economists can put two different spins on the same data (something that seems to be taught in social sciences in general whenever politics gets involved).

The City of Seattle hired a group of economists to study the transitory impact of minimum wage hikes on labor and business firms in Seattle. I say "transitory" because the wage hikes are being phased in and won't reach the $15 level until

The Study
July 2016

This report presents the short-run effects of the Seattle Minimum Wage Ordinance on the Seattle labor market. The Seattle Minimum Wage study team at the University of Washington analyzed administrative records on employment, hours, and earnings from the Washington Employment Security Department to address two fundamental questions: 1) How has Seattle’s labor market performed since the City passed the Minimum Wage Ordinance, and particularly since the first wage increase phased in on April 1, 2015? 2) What are the short-run effects of the Minimum Wage Ordinance on Seattle’s labor market? While quite similar at first glance, these two questions address very different issues and require very different methods to answer. The first question can be studied with a simple before/after comparison. Although the comparison is simple, it risks conflating the impact of the minimum wage with other local trends. Many things have happened in Seattle’s labor market since June 2014, most of them having little or nothing to do with the minimum wage itself. The City has enjoyed steady expansion in tech sector employment, and a construction boom fueled by rising residential and commercial property prices. Even the weather – a key determinant of economic activity in the Puget Sound region – was favorable in 2015, with record-low precipitation in the early months of the $11 minimum wage. The before-after comparison can tell us the net impact of all these simultaneous trends, but this comparison cannot distinguish among them. Our second question – the more important one for purposes of evaluating the policy – aims to isolate the impact of the minimum wage from all the other regional trends seen over the same time period. Whereas the first question asks “are we better off than we were when Seattle raised the minimum wage” and requires only a simple comparison of yesterday to today, the second asks “are we better off than we would have been if Seattle had not adopted a higher minimum wage?” To answer it requires imagining how the local economy would look in absence of a Minimum Wage Ordinance. While it is impossible to directly observe what would have happened if no wage ordinance had been implemented, this report uses widely accepted statistical techniques to compare Seattle in its current state—with the presence of the Minimum Wage Ordinance—to an image of what Seattle might have looked like today if not for the Minimum Wage Ordinance. We take advantage of data going back to 2005 to build a model of the way Seattle’s labor market typically works. We also take advantage of data on nearby regions that did not increase the minimum wage to better understand how other factors might have influenced what we observe in the City itself.

3 In this report, we present findings on wages, workers, jobs, and establishments. Our findings can be summarized as follows: Wages:  The distribution of wages shifted as expected.  The share of workers earning less than $11 per hour declined sharply.  This decline began shortly after the ordinance was passed.  However, similar declines were seen outside of Seattle, suggesting an improving economy may be the cause of the change in the distribution of wages. Low-Wage Workers:  In the 18 months after the Seattle Minimum Wage Ordinance passed, the City of Seattle’s lowest-paid workers experienced a significant increase in wages.  The typical worker earning under $11/hour in Seattle when the City Council voted to raise the minimum wage in June 2014 (“low-wage workers”) earned $11.14 per hour by the end of 2015, an increase from $9.96/hour at the time of passage.  The minimum wage contributed to this effect, but the strong economy did as well. We estimate that the minimum wage itself is responsible for a $0.73/hour average increase for low-wage workers.  In a region where all low-wage workers, including those in Seattle, have enjoyed access to more jobs and more hours, Seattle’s low-wage workers show some preliminary signs of lagging behind similar workers in comparison regions.  The minimum wage appears to have slightly reduced the employment rate of low-wage workers by about one percentage point. It appears that the Minimum Wage Ordinance modestly held back Seattle’s employment of low-wage workers relative to the level we could have expected.  Hours worked among low-wage Seattle workers have lagged behind regional trends, by roughly four hours per quarter (nineteen minutes per week), on average.  Low-wage individuals working in Seattle when the ordinance passed transitioned to jobs outside Seattle at an elevated rate compared to historical patterns.  Seattle’s low-wage workers did see larger-than-usual paychecks (i.e., quarterly earnings) in late 2015, but most— if not all—of that increase was due to a strong local economy.  Increased wages were offset by modest reductions in employment and hours, thereby limiting the extent to which higher wages directly translated into higher average earnings.  At most, 25% of the observed earnings gains—around a few dollars a week, on average—can be attributed to the minimum wage.  Seattle’s low-wage workers who kept working were modestly better off as a result of the Minimum Wage Ordinance, having $13 more per week in earnings and working 15 minutes less per week.

4 Jobs:  Overall, the Seattle labor market was exceptionally strong over the 18 months from mid2014 to the end of 2015.  Seattle’s job growth rate tripled the national average between mid-2014 and late 2015.  This job growth rate outpaced Seattle’s own robust performance in recent years.  Surrounding portions of King County also had a very good year; the boom appears to fade with geographic distance.  Job growth is clearly driven by increased opportunities for higher-wage workers, but businesses relying on low-wage labor showed better-than-average growth as well.  For businesses that rely heavily on low-wage labor, our estimates of the impact of the Ordinance on the number of persistent jobs are small and sensitive to modeling choices. Our estimates of the impact of the Ordinance on hours per employee more consistently indicate a reduction of roughly one hour per week.  Fewer hours per employee could reflect higher turnover rather than cutbacks in staffing.  Reductions in hours are consistent with the experiences of low-wage workers. Establishments:  We do not find compelling evidence that the minimum wage has caused significant increases in business failure rates. Moreover, if there has been any increase in business closings caused by the Minimum Wage Ordinance, it has been more than offset by an increase in business openings. In sum, Seattle’s experience shows that the City’s low-wage workers did relatively well after the minimum wage increased, but largely because of the strong regional economy. Seattle’s low wage workers would have experienced almost equally positive trends if the minimum wage had not increased. Although the minimum wage clearly increased wages for this group, offsetting effects on low-wage worker hours and employment muted the impact on labor earnings. We strongly caution that these results show only the short-run impact of Seattle’s increase to a wage of $11/hour, and that they do not reflect the full range of experiences for tens of thousands of individual workers in the City economy. These are “average” effects which could mask critical distinctions between workers in different categories. Our future work will extend analysis to 2016, when Seattle’s minimum wage increased a second time and began to distinguish between businesses of different sizes and industries. It will also incorporate more detailed information about workers by linking employment records to other state databases. This will give us a greater capacity to answer key questions, such as whether the workers benefiting most from higher minimum wages are more likely to be living in poverty. We are also in the process of collecting additional survey information from Seattle businesses and conducting interviews with a worker sample tracked since early 2015. The next report, expected in September, will focus specifically on how the minimum wage has affected nonprofit organizations.

Continued in article

Spin From Investors Business Daily
The Bitter Lesson From Seattle's Minimum Wage Hike
August 10, 2016

Spin From a Respected, Albeit Very Liberal Economist --- Jared Bernsten
So far, the Seattle minimum-wage increase is doing what it’s supposed to do
August 10, 2016

Jensen Comment
The issue of minimum wage became an enormous political issue when the workers receiving the wage changed. When I grew up in the 1950s and 1960s and those McJobs having low pay were primarily intended to be temporary jobs where students could earn a little outside the classroom and where younger people in general could get a start in the work place. Nobody with normal capabilities intended to make careers out of those very low paying McJobs. Somewhere along the way things changed to where now those McJobs became careers for many folks who are not destined for bigger and better careers in the economy. With that change came increasing demands to increase the minimum wage to a more suitable wage for longer-term careers.

The real question that the Seattle study is trying to answer is whether raising the minimum wage in Seattle had a positive or negative impact on employers, employees, and low-skilled unemployed. The answer seems to be varied (depending upon what economist and what workers you consult.) Impact on is hard to isolate statistically because Seattle is a relative boom town due to the high tech economic sector. Thus just because a lot of McJob employers are still thriving is confounded by the boom times apart from the minimum wage increase. McJob employers are likely to be hit harder in communities having less boom success in general. Also the wage increases are being phased in over time (until 2021)such that there is not one big boom to study.

It's hard judge impact on some McJob employers in very large or otherwise isolated communities relative to those surrounded by competition not required to raise minimum wage. For example, restaurant customers in in Seattle are not likely to go elsewhere because their favorite restaurant had to raise prices slightly. Restaurant customers on the very edge of Seattle might drive a bit further for better prices.

Thus the impact of the Seattle's minimum wage hike focuses more on labor/employment impact than on employer impact. And herein commences the lying or possible lying with statistics. I would dwell on all the issues since you can read them for your self in the above links.

Personally, I think the $15 minimum wage eventually is a good idea in a high cost city like Seattle.

But I would like to conclude with what I think is trickery in Jared Bernstein's rejoinder. He skirts important issues like how entry level employees without skills (like students in need of part-time jobs and employees who messed up their early years (e.g., with drugs and crime) get a start without higher turnover in the minimum wage jobs that open up entry-level jobs.

At times he totally ignores the study's findings such as:

 The distribution of wages shifted as expected.
 The share of workers earning less than $11 per hour declined sharply.
 This decline began shortly after the ordinance was passed.
 However, similar declines were seen outside of Seattle, suggesting an improving economy may be the cause of the change in the distribution of wages.

Second he seems to imply without more data or foresight that in larger firms the minimum wage is an even better idea than it is at fast-food restaurants. What he fails to note that it is in the larger firms where robotics alternatives to low-paying jobs are exploding. :

Wal-Mart Has An Army Of Robots That Pick, Pack, and Send in Their 130 Distribution Centers ---

McJobs in those Wal-Mart distribution centers have already disappeared with advances in robotics. Perhaps this was inevitable but eliminating McJobs with higher minimum wages will speed up job sacrices to robots and drive more and more low skilled workers to welfare rolls and crime.

Also see
The Automated Wal-Mart:  A Thought Experiment

The Seattle experiment is hard to extrapolate to every town and city in the USA. I think higher minimum wages where the cost of living is very high is probably a good idea. For example, the cost of living is even high in the suburbs of Seattle and San Francisco. But the same minimum wage successes for those metropolitan areas can be a disaster in rural America where the job losses are likely to be enormous, For example, down the road from our mountain cottage is an old fashioned hardware store that is already struggling to compete with stores 10 miles away (in Littleton, NH), stores like Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and Lowes. A $15 minimum wage might close the doors on my favorite and struggling little hardware store that now makes almost zero profit. The workers in this store are typically part-time spouses who supplement the family income with a bit of added wage within walking distance of the store.

The main conclusion from this illustration is that professional economists cannot agree on much of anything!

Cleveland just rejected a $15 miniumum wage ---

Law School Deans in Australia Are Running and Bait and Switch Operation ---

Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates --- 

"How Hard Is It to Get Tenure?" by Karen Kelsky, Chronicle of Higher Education, July 26, 2016 ---

Jensen Comment
Two things make getting tenure at an R1 prestigious university somewhat unique.

Firstly, there has to be an opening. Some prestigious universities near capacity in terms of tenure. In an ideal world the university would not even hire new tenure track faculty unless an opening was assured. However, in the real world predicting future openings is more difficult because of uncertainties regarding resignations and dates of retirement.

Secondly in R1 universities there are usually stars having worldwide reputations. In many instances getting tenure means having one of these stars pulling a tenure candidate up the tenure track and using star power to influence other tenured faculty to vote for that star's choice.

At an R1 university we should not attempt to assess probability on the basis of the number of tenure track candidates who seeming "did not make it." Many such tenure track candidates never intended to make tenure on their first jobs at R1 universities. There are many reasons. Sometimes the cost of living in the vicinity of an R1 university restrains hoped for lifestyles. A family hoping for rural living with a couple horses, some goats, and a few acres of yard best not choose Stanford University. That sort of living begins at a real estate price of $50 million in the vicinity of Stanford University.

Sometimes working at an R1 university is just too much of a pressure cooker. After getting tenure the pressure gets worse to maintain reputation in terms of obtaining grants, publishing in top research journals, generating top doctoral students, constantly giving presentations around the world, and many other expectations that are bad for health.

Tenure track faculty are aware of these issues and many of them never intend to stay. However, starting out at a prestigious university increases the odds for publication in a variety of ways including low teaching loads, stellar colleagues to work with, and powerful alumni connections. Many hope to build a dream resume and then have a fast-track shot at that endowed chair in rural USA where farms and ranches are affordable.

"Two Good Men," Larry Summers Blog, July 25, 2016 ---

MIT:  The Promise and Perils of Manipulating Memory ---

Teaching Case
Cost Accounting and Inventory Valuation
by Bob Jensen: 
Differences Between Mark-to-Market Accounting for Derivative Contracts Versus Commodity Inventories

Why bother teaching our students not to cheat when professors can get away with it? ---

Jensen Comment
Professors are allowed to cheat in subtle ways. For example, four professors (usually in different universities) agree to conduct research and write papers in pairs. They play the odds game in journal acceptance. Suppose they put all four names on eight papers that were written by different pairs. They put all four names on eight papers playing the game that two of the eight papers might be accepted by the top research journals of their discipline.

If students might play this game in a slightly different way only each paper may only have one author. We would call it cheating when students write papers for one another. In higher education we call it just trying to get a publication hit in a top journal.

Professors who plagiarized or otherwise cheated ---

Professors who let students cheat ---

Economist Magazine, July 30, 2016
Minsky's Moment
The second article in our series on seminal economic ideas looks at Hyman Minsky’s hypothesis that booms sow the seeds of busts

Economist Magazine:  July 22, 2016
The Market for Lemons
The first in our series on seminal economic ideas looks at George Akerlof’s 1970 paper, a foundation stone of information economics ---

"GDP Is a Wildly Flawed Measure for the Digital Age," by Barry Libert and Megan Beck, Harvard Business Review Blog, July 28, 2016 --- 

Time-Series Non-Stationarity ---
In my opinion this is the biggest hurdle in statistical analysis in general and time-series analysis in particular

Time Series Co-Integration ---
Especially note the illustration in the Introduction

"The Forecasting Performance of Models for Cointegrated Data," by David Giles, Econometrics Beat, July 26, 2016 ---

Senate Bill Proposes Shot in Arm for Career and Technical Education ---

"Science Isn’t Broken." By Christie Aschwanden, Nate Silver's 5:38 Blog, August 19, 2015 ---

If you follow the headlines, your confidence in science may have taken a hit lately. Peer review? More like self-review. An investigation in November uncovered a scam in which researchers were

researchers were rubber-stamping their own work,
circumventing peer review at five high-profile publishers. Scientific journals? Not exactly a badge of legitimacy, given that the International Journal of Advanced Computer Technology recently accepted for publication a paper titled “Get Me Off Your Fucking Mailing List,” whose text was nothing more than those seven words, repeated over and over  
for 10 pages. Two other journalsallowed an engineer posing as Maggie Simpson and Edna Krabappel to publish a paper, “Fuzzy, Homogeneous Configurations.” Revolutionary findings? Possibly fabricated. In May, a couple of University of California, Berkeley, grad students discovered irregularities in
Michael LaCour’s influential paper suggesting that an in-person conversation with a gay person could change how people felt about same-sex marriage. The journal Science retracted the paper shortly after, when LaCour’s co-author could find no record of the data.Taken together, headlines like these might suggest that science is a shady enterprise that spits out a bunch of dressed-up nonsense. But I’ve spent months investigating the problems hounding science, and I’ve learned that the headline-grabbing cases of misconduct and fraud are mere distractions. The state of our science is strong, but it’s plagued by a universal problem: Science is hard . . .

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Accounting researchers have a bit easier since it's almost certain their research will never be subjected to replication ---

Property taxes are soaring in some neighborhoods of Chicago ---

The property tax bill on Jeff and Roberta Price's Lincoln Park home was about $400 in 1977, the first year they lived there. It's been going up ever since, but rarely with the jolt of this year's 63 percent increase.

The increase, from $8,652 to $14,104, has the couple reconsidering their plan to retire in the Kenmore Avenue home where they raised their kids. They're looking at homes in Indiana "as a backup plan" for the time when Roberta retires in a few years, said Jeff Price, who is already retired.

"We have lived in our home for almost 39 years with the hope that we could remain here in our golden years," Jeff Price said. The increase in their tax bill amounts to about $454 a month, an amount they can squeak out, he said, but he's aware that for homeowners who struggle financially, it won't be easy.

"I don't know how anyone can plan their life with these unconscionable increases," Price said.

The Prices are among about 1.4 million residential property owners in Cook County facing an Aug. 1 deadline to pay the second installment of their 2015 property taxes. The tax bills, mailed out by the Cook County Clerk in June, are the first to reflect both the higher assessments of city properties' value that were released last fall and the city upping the pension part of its tax levy by $318 million.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
This type of increase is happening in many parts of the USA. But it could not happen Jeff and Roberta Price in California because of the infamous Proposition 13 (as long as they remained in the same house) --- ) 

The Unraveling of Harvard’s Star Trading Desk,” by Michael McDonald, Bloomberg, July 28, 2016 ---


. . .

After years of missteps, controversy and even crisis, Harvard Management Corp., which oversees the university’s $37.6 billion endowment, began assembling a new corps of equity traders and analysts in 2014, in hopes of recapturing a part of the investment magic that had once made the fund the envy of the world.

Only now, just two years later, that plan has collapsed. Stephen Blyth, 48, the former bond trader behind that effort, stepped down as HMC’s chief executive Wednesday for personal reasons after just 18 months on the job. His resignation follows the departure in June of Michael Ryan and Robert Howard, the two former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partners he had brought in to guide the new equity strategy.

Pulled Plug

While Blyth’s exit was said to be unrelated to those of his star hires, the talk inside HMC’s offices at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston centered on why management had pulled the plug on the team so quickly amid a volatile equities market.

According to people familiar with the matter, some traders in Ryan’s group posted losses in 2015 significant enough to trigger internal temporary stop-loss orders. Ryan also lost money in a portfolio he managed. The extent of the losses is unclear, however, and came at a time when most hedge funds were struggling to beat market indexes.

But now, Harvard is once again confronting the same, uncomfortable question that has dogged it for years: why can’t the world’s richest university, for all its brains, make smarter investments?


Stanley Fish ---

"Professors, Stop Opining About Trump," by Stanley Fish, The New York Times, July 15, 2016 ---

PROFESSORS are at it again, demonstrating in public how little they understand the responsibilities and limits of their profession.

On Monday a group calling itself Historians Against Trump published an Open Letter to the American People.” The purpose of the letter, the historians tell us, is to warn against “Donald J. Trump’s candidacy and the exceptional challenges it poses to civil society.” They suggest that they are uniquely qualified to issue this warning because they “have a professional obligation as historians to share an understanding of the past upon which a better future may be built.”

Or in other words: We’re historians and you’re not, and “historians understand the impact these phenomena have upon society’s most vulnerable.” Therefore we can’t keep silent, for “the lessons of history compel us to speak out against Trump.”

I would say that the hubris of these statements was extraordinary were it not so commonplace for professors (not all but many) to regularly equate the possession of an advanced degree with virtue. The claim is not simply that disciplinary expertise confers moral and political superiority, but that historians, because of their training, are uniquely objective observers: “As historians, we consider diverse viewpoints while acknowledging our own limitations and subjectivity.”

But there’s very little acknowledgment of limitations and subjectivity in what follows, only a rehearsal of the now standard criticisms of Mr. Trump, offered not as political opinions, which they surely are, but as indisputable, impartially arrived at truths: “Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is a campaign of violence: violence against individuals and groups; against memory and accountability, against historical analysis and fact.” How’s that for cool, temperate and disinterested analysis?

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that this view of Mr. Trump is incorrect; nor am I saying that it is on target: only that it is a view, like anyone else’s. By dressing up their obviously partisan views as “the lessons of history,” the signatories to the letter present themselves as the impersonal transmitters of a truth that just happens to flow through them. In fact they are merely people with history degrees, which means that they have read certain books, taken and taught certain courses and written scholarly essays, often on topics of interest only to other practitioners in the field.

While this disciplinary experience qualifies them to ask and answer discipline-specific questions, it does not qualify them to be our leaders and guides as we prepare to exercise our franchise in a general election. Academic expertise is not a qualification for delivering political wisdom.

Nor is it their job, although they seem to think it is: “It is all of our jobs to fill the voids exploited by the Trump campaign.” (I’m not sure that I understand what that grandiose sentence means.) No, it’s their job to teach students how to handle archival materials, how to distinguish between reliable and unreliable evidence, how to build a persuasive account of a disputed event, in short, how to perform as historians, not as seers or political gurus.

I would have no problem with individuals, who also happened to be historians, disseminating their political conclusions in an op-ed or letter to the editor; but I do have a problem when a bunch of individuals claim for themselves a corporate identity and more than imply that they speak for the profession of history.

There are at least two things wrong with this claim. First, it couldn’t possibly be true unless it were the case that no credentialed historian is a Trump supporter; even one or two (and I bet there are a lot more than that) would spoil the broth. Second, and more important, the profession of history shouldn’t be making political pronouncements of any kind. Its competence lies elsewhere, in the discipline-specific acts I identified above.

Were an academic organization to declare a political position, it would at that moment cease to be an academic organization and would have turned itself — as the Historians Against Trump turn themselves — into a political organization whose arguments must make their way without the supposed endorsement and enhancement of an academic pedigree. Its members would be political actors who share the accidental feature of having advanced degrees. But it’s not the degrees, which are finally inessential, but the strength or weakness of the arguments that will tell in the end.

If academics are wrong to insert themselves into the political process under the banner of academic expertise, is Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrong when she makes unflattering remarks about Mr. Trump at a conference and in an interview? Maybe so (indeed, she herself has expressed regret for the comments), but she has not committed the same transgression as the historians. Justice Ginsburg was speaking off the cuff, offering her opinion on a matter currently in the news, as any citizen has a right to do. She did not cite or trade on the trappings of her office; she did not proclaim from the bench.

 Continued in article

We can blame democracy for the high risk of public-sector pension plans
The Economist Magazine
July 26, 2016

Jensen Comment
It turns out that pension investing risk relies heavily on investment and accounting rules where public-sector pension fund managers are allowed to get their funds into riskier investments, including junk bonds.

The enormous TIAA/CREF and some other pension funds give investors risk choices. TIAA bond funds are doing worse due to the Fed's low-interest policy such that teachers in TIAA/CREF are choosing more risky funds. Deals are no longer as good for fixed-annuity plans relative to when I retired in 2006 (blind luck rather than strategy).

Sadly, riskier public-sector pension plans increases the risk of future taxpayer bailouts. Public-sector pension plans would probably not be as risky if government declared there was zero chance of future bailouts. But then what legislators seeking office are going to promise zero chance of a public-sector pension bailout. Hence we can blame democracy for the high risk of public-sector pension plans.

One definition of democracy is gambling with taxpayer dollars.
The bankers as well as K-12 teachers helped to invent the bailout idea along with municipal workers. Public-sector workers opposed to gambling probably don't even know they are gambling with taxpayer dollars.

From the Scout Report on July 29, 2016

Duolingo --- 

Duolingo is a mobile app designed to help people learn and practice a new language. Users can select any one of 36 languages and practice reading, listening, and speaking this language. The app works by introducing users to new vocabulary and grammar rules through a series of short levels. The goal? Users will learn by seeing words and grammar modeled. Next, users can try their hand at interpreting written and spoken sentences and then speaking them out loud, allowing for pronunciation practice. When users are able to successfully complete these tasks they move onto higher levels with new vocabulary. Duolingo is designed to be of use to individuals brand new to a language as well those looking to brush up an already familiar one, as users can chose to test out of levels. Best of all, Duolingo is free. Users can also "compete" against friends using the app if they wish, providing additional motivation and accountability.


Simple.Savr is a new file-sharing device that allows users to quickly and easily share files with anyone in their wifi network. Simply type and edit text into a Share box or upload files for others to download. Shared files are available to anyone in the network for one week. At this time, there is a 25MB limit to files that can be shared -thus, while this tool is useful for sharing text documents, it is not ideal for larger downloads. That said, Simple.Savr provides an easy way for coworkers or family members to share files and ideas with ease. Perhaps best of all, this site is incredibly accessible: no sign-in or download is required so anyone can start sharing files right away

To Make a Lichen, It Takes Three: Scientists Discover a Second Fungi in
Two's Company, Three's a Lichen?

Lichen is a famous biological partnership, but it may actually be a

How a Guy from a Montana Trailer Park Overturned 150 Years of History

Basidiomycete yeasts in the cortex of ascomycete macro-lichens

Mix and Match Ecology: Symbiosis Lesson Plan

USDA: Lichens

From the Scout Report on August 5, 2016

Venngage ---

Venngage is an online tool that facilitates visual story-telling via eye-catching charts, maps, icons, and visuals that can be used on infographics, reports, or posters. There are dozens of templates for users to explore, all sorted into categories such as statistics, timelines, geography, and comparison. After signing up for a free account, users can create templates for reporting budget projections (in the Reports tab) or informational posters to describe procedures (in the Posters tab). The Posters section may be of special interest to anyone looking to sleekly incorporate graphs and charts into a poster presentation for the classroom or at a conference. While some of the templates require a monthly subscription, others are free and available for anyone to use.  

Dials --- 

This free calendar application for Apple and Android mobile devices may appeal most to users who live by the motto, "one day at a time." Daily schedules are presented on a 12-hour clock face accompanied by a smaller weekly calendar at the bottom of the screen. When users add daily agenda items, a timer indicates the amount of time until the next agenda item begins. Users can quickly add agenda items for any point in the future. Dials syncs with Google Calendars, so users can easily update appointments and reminders from their Google accounts. For the aesthetically inclined user looking for an alternative to the more traditional calendar applications, Dials' unique interface may be the solution. Available for Apple devices running iOS 9.0 and up and on Android devices 4.2+.

"Zombie" Anthrax Wreak Havoc in Rapidly Warming Siberia
Anthrax sickens 13 in western Siberia, and a thawed-out reindeer corpse may
be to blame

Anthrax outbreak triggered by climate change kills boy in Arctic Circle

"Zombie" Anthrax Goes on Killing Spree in Siberia--How?

Thawing of permafrost may disturb historic cattle burial grounds in East

Sinkholes in Siberia Raise and Climate Change

The Nenets of Siberia

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Jensen Comment
So far I'm disappointed in Scholarpedia --- it has a long way to go

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From Michigan State University:  The Celebrity Lecture Series ---

How Did Hitler Rise to Power? : New TED-ED Animation Provides a Case Study in How Fascists Get Democratically Elected ---

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Also see  

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Language Tutorials

From the Scout Report on July 29, 2016

Duolingo --- 

Duolingo is a mobile app designed to help people learn and practice a new language. Users can select any one of 36 languages and practice reading, listening, and speaking this language. The app works by introducing users to new vocabulary and grammar rules through a series of short levels. The goal? Users will learn by seeing words and grammar modeled. Next, users can try their hand at interpreting written and spoken sentences and then speaking them out loud, allowing for pronunciation practice. When users are able to successfully complete these tasks they move onto higher levels with new vocabulary. Duolingo is designed to be of use to individuals brand new to a language as well those looking to brush up an already familiar one, as users can chose to test out of levels. Best of all, Duolingo is free. Users can also "compete" against friends using the app if they wish, providing additional motivation and accountability.

Bob Jensen's links to language tutorials are at

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July 27, 2016

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August 13, 2016

Blue-Blocking Glasses May Help Treat Bipolar Disorder, Promote Sleep ---

Jensen Comment
Note the word "may." Scientific evidence is still pretty sparse. However, it would seem that this is a relatively low cost and non-invasive thing to try.

NIH News in Health ---

Stephen Fry on Coping With Depression ---

Americans may not be getting taller on average but other things are tipping the scales
Average American 15 Pounds Heavier in Two Decades
Jensen Comment
I did my share


Humor for June 2015

Harvard Business Review Blog Cartoons ---

Forwarded by Paula


I love this story. Lay down what's bothering you, breath in the fresh air and LISTEN to this story.

Time is like a river. You cannot touch the water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again.

Enjoy every moment of life.

As a bagpiper,I play many gigs.

Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends,

so the service was to be at a pauper's cemetery in the

Nova Scotia back country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn't stop for directions.

I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight.

There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating

lunch. I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late.

I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn't know

what else to do, so I started to play.

The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my

heart and soul for this man with no family and friends.

I played like I've never played before for this homeless man.

And as I played "Amazing Grace", the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept, we all wept together.

When I finished, I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car.

Though my head was hung low, my heart was full.

As I opened the door to my car, I heard one of the workers say, "I never seen anything like that before,

and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."

Apparently, I'm still's a man thing.


Humor July  2016 ---  

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Update in 2014
20-Year Sugar Hill Master Plan ---

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One more mission in what's left of my life will be to try to change this 

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Yahoo (Practitioners)
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.
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 
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 ---

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 []
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  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 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) ---


Bob Jensen's Sort-of Blogs ---
Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks ---
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits ---
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates ---

Some Accounting History Sites

Bob Jensen's Accounting History in a Nutshell and Links ---

Accounting History Libraries at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) ---
The above libraries include international accounting history.
The above libraries include film and video historical collections.

MAAW Knowledge Portal for Management and Accounting ---

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

Sage Accounting History ---

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 ---
Part II covering years 1974-2003 published in February 2005 --- 

A nice timeline of accounting history ---

From Texas A&M University
Accounting History Outline ---

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

History of Fraud in America ---
Also see

Bob Jensen's Threads ---

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories

All my online pictures ---


Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob)
190 Sunset Hill Road
Sugar Hill, NH 03586
Phone:  603-823-8482