Tidbits on April 17, 2017
Bob Jensen at Trinity University

Set 01 of Renate's Pictures From Germany


Tidbits on April 17, 2017
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Bob Jensen's Tidbits ---

For earlier editions of Fraud Updates go to http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 
Bookmarks for the World's Library --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm 

Bob Jensen's past presentations and lectures --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/resume.htm#Presentations   

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

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

More of Bob Jensen's Pictures and Stories

Updates from WebMD --- Click Here

Google Scholar --- https://scholar.google.com/

Wikipedia --- https://www.wikipedia.org/

Bob Jensen's search helpers --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm

Bob Jensen's World Library --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm

USA Debt Clock --- http://www.usdebtclock.org/

Online Video, Slide Shows, and Audio

American Accounting Association 2016 Centennial Video ---
This video may only be available to AAA Commons subscribers (free I think)

NOVA: Treasures of the Earth: Gems --- http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/treasures-earth-gems.html

YouTube: Math Mornings at Yale --- https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLqHnHG5X2PXBVZsf_rvAwGnUgZ-mGdqCy

YouTube: Infinite Series (infinity) --- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs4aHmggTfFrpkPcWSaBN9g

138 Short Animated Introductions to the World’s Greatest Ideas: Plato, Michel Foucault, Simone de Beauvoir & More ---

Flying Surf Board --- http://www.flixxy.com/the-incredible-flyboard-air.htm

Is He the Best Magician Ever --- http://1funny.com/magic-trick-leave-you-stunned/

Jim Henson’s Commercials for Wilkins Coffee: 15 Twisted Minutes of Muppet Coffee Ads (1957-1961) ---

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

Hear Jimi Hendrix’s Virtuoso Guitar Performances in Isolated Tracks: “Fire,” “Purple Haze,” “Third Stone from the Sun” & More ---

Watch 450 NPR Tiny Desk Concerts: Intimate Performances from The Pixies, Adele, Wilco, Yo-Yo Ma & Many More ---

NPR Full Concerts --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1109

A 3,350-Song Playlist of Music (jazz) from Haruki Murakami’s Personal Record Collection ---

Watch Frank Sinatra Record “It Was a Very Good Year” in the Studio in 1965, and You’ll Know Why They Called Him “The Voice”

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

Download 437 Issues of Soviet Photo Magazine, the Soviet Union’s Historic Photography Journal (1926-1991) ---

NASA's $1 billion Jupiter probe just sent back breathtaking new images of the gas giant ---

NASA's Astronauts ---

Chinese Cities With No People (ideal for avoiding civilian casualties in a bombing raid) ---

National Geographic Society: Gray Wolf Educator's Guide --- http://www.nationalgeographic.org/media/gray-wolf-educator-guide

These historic black and white photos have been transformed into colour masterpieces by a 21-year-old Brazilian artist ---

The World's Great Cities Before They Were Cities ---

The Wall of Birds --- https://academy.allaboutbirds.org/features/wallofbirds

Photos that show where 30 world leaders live (actually most have multiple residences) ---

Things You Never Knew About the Eiffel Tower ---

Photos Show How the USA Attack on Syria Unfolded ---

Bob Jensen's threads on art history ---

Apple's $5 billion campus opens next month — here's what it looks like now

David and Gladys Wright House (Frank Lloyd Wright) --- http://davidwrighthouse.org

Musee des Beaux-Artes: Collections (art works) --- http://mbarouen.fr/en/collections

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://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on libraries --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm#---Libraries

Dictionary of the Bood --- http://lisnews.org/the_dictionary_of_the_book

Marginalia Review of Books --- http://marginalia.lareviewofbooks.org

Amazon's List of 100 Books to Read in Your Lifetime (not many ancient classics or or other free books in this listing)---

P.G. Wodehouse, Great American Humorist?

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

Now in Another Tidbits Document
Political Quotations on April 17, 2017

USA Debt Clock --- http://www.usdebtclock.org/ ubl

To Whom Does the USA Federal Government Owe Money (the booked obligation of $19+ trillion) ---
The US Debt Clock in Real Time --- http://www.usdebtclock.org/ 
Remember the Jane Fonda Movie called "Rollover" --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rollover_(film)

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 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Entitlements.htm

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

Microsoft just released a huge new update for Windows 10 — here's what's new (including more control over timing of updates)
Note that this article is a slide show.
The updates may not be so "huge" for most users (like me for instance).

Congratulations to Trinity University's Fiorenza Bruni on the publication of her poem
The Dream
Voices de la Luna, A Quarterly Poetry & Arts Magazine
February 2017
This was a poem shw wrote 20 years ago.

It's going to take some getting used to as our journals, books, email messages, letters, etc. do away with the singular (think I, me, he, him, himself, she, her, and herself) with the plural (think they, their, theirself, and them) where we used to use the singular case for just one person. The Wall Street Journal writes about this by quoting an acceptance letter from a Dean Powell at Brown University where they writes (now supposedly politically correct grammar) in the new politically correct (plural) case.

"A Letter From An Ivy League Admissions Dean," by James Freeman, The Wall Street Journal, April 13, 2017 ---

. . .

Oddly, the note referred to the accepted student not as “she” but as “they.” Dean Powell’s letter also stated that our reader’s daughter had no doubt worked hard and made positive contributions to “their” school and community. Our reader reports that his perplexed family initially thought that Brown had made a word-processing error. That was before they listened to a voice mail message from the school congratulating his daughter and referring to her as “them.”

. . .

The letter from Dean Powell included a total of four short paragraphs, including this one: “And now, as we invite you to join the Brown family, we encourage you to allow [daughter’s name] to chart their own course. Just as you have always been there, now we will provide support, challenge and opportunities for growth.”

Nearly a complete stranger, Mr. Powell is writing a short, error-filled letter to parents claiming that his organization is fit to replace them. No doubt the “Brown family” with all its “thems” and “theys” can offer a wealth of valuable educational opportunities. But anyone who buys the line that competent parenting is part of the package has probably never set foot on campus.

Jensen Comment
They (meaning I) am going to continue to use such politically-incorrect words like " I, me, he, him, himself, she, her, herself" just because we is too old to become two old men (no longer a politically-correct word) in one old body.

It might be an interesting writing workshop exercise next semester to rewrite all the politically incorrect graduation speeches that will be given this coming May and June. What celebrity is going to make a fool out of theirself by speaking in the new politically correct plural doublespeak in a graduation speech?

How Are Colleges Protecting Their Data?

It's complicated and varied.

A Free 700-Page Chess Manual Explains 1,000 Chess Tactics in Plain English ---

MIT:  Technology and Inequality ---

Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and venture capitalists are fond of arguing they are disrupting hidebound industries and “changing the world”— the implicit assumption being that such change is good. In this feature, we explore how technology is indeed changing our economy, but in a way that’s leaving more and more people behind.

Interesting Facts You Probably Did Not Know About the History of Amazon ---

California is getting so much power from solar that wholesale electricity prices are turning negative ---
Jensen Comment
When power companies buy solar power on the wholesale market they have to store it in a costly manner. This is why wholesale prices are a lot lower than retail prices.

MIT:  Praying for an Energy Miracle ---

Solar and wind power are increasingly important as a means of generating electricity, but they account for a small fraction of America’s total energy use. Sadly, we still need some major advances to guide us to our clean-energy future.

Jensen Comment
The oil and gas industry keeps lowering prices to make alternative energy sources in need of taxpayer subsidies to compete. Batteries are giving hope to the solar power industry, but batteries add considerably to the cost of solar power.

The mood in America is becoming more negative about taxpayer subsidies for alternative energies. Even the greens of California decided to charge each electric car owner $100 annually for use of the state's roads and bridges ---
This is way to low, but it does signal the a changing mood about giving electric car owners free rides on  roadways.

Current tax reform measures for the entire USA will probably result in lower subsidies for wind and solar.

If a family has one and only one car it will probably not be an electric car due to the limited range of around 200 miles (give or take) between charges and battery inefficiency in cold climates. Electric cars are relatively expensive second cars for higher income families. Another drawback is the lack of electric car infrastructure (think charging stations) across the USA compared to gas stations. Electric cars are more viable in small and warm nations like Israel.

The bottom line is that the oil and gas industry will not go down without a price war.

Also applause must be given to traditional vehicles that pay for roadway new construction,  maintenance, and  snow/ice removal.

In California the new added 12 cent gas tax is now paying for under-funded pensions of state workers. Electric car owners aren't paying a farthing for those pensions.

How to Mislead With Statistics

OECD:  Taxing Wages in 2017 --- http://www.oecd.org/tax/taxing-wages-20725124.htm

Sorry America Your Taxes Aren't High ---

Jensen Comment
Time and time again I've lamented that some things are generally misleading when they are compared between nations or even between the various 50 states of the USA.. For example, poverty is relative. A family below the poverty line in the USA is really not comparable to a family below the poverty line in many other countries of the world such as in India, China, and the poor nations of Africa. One problem in comparing poverty is that the safety nets vary so much for where in the USA there's Medicaid, food stamps, subsidized housing, homeless shelters, aid to dependent children, earned income tax credits, disability income, etc.

Tax rates are also not comparable unless you also compare what those taxes buy in the way of goods and services. For example, to the population of the USA not below the poverty line and not on Medicare there is no "free" national health care services and medications relative to nations having taxpayer-funded national health care for everybody.

In the USA Medicare does not pay for nursing homes for afflicted patients not in hospitals whereas many national health care plans pay for nursing home care.

Some nations like Germany have taxpayer-funded higher education, although the funding is not available for education and training for over half the high school graduates. In Europe less than half of the Tier 2 (high school) graduates are even allowed to go 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 --- 

But employer-funded apprentice programs are much better in Europe than the USA.

Also there are many types of taxes that are difficult to compare. Many nations supplement income taxes with highly variable sales taxes and VAT taxes that are collected ultimately in prices rather than tax assessments.

Nations also vary in terms of public services such as transportation. Cars are luxury goods in nations like Denmark (due largely to high taxes) where people move about cheaply on bicycles and low-cost public transportation. In most parts of the USA cars are essential because of bad weather and lousy public transportation outside the largest metropolitan areas.

I could carry on with my rant about misleading world statistics, but to do so might take the rest of my life.

MIT:  Google’s been experimenting with trying to understand your crappy drawings for a while, but its new (free) AutoDraw AI effortlessly turns your doodles into perfect pictures ---
Also see

Want to Understand AI? Try Sketching a Duck for a Neural Network ---

Big Data for Student Success Still Limited to Early Adopters ---

Also see this special report ---

Sunk Cost Cartoons That Probably Apply to 'Bob Jensen More Than Most Folks ---

April Fools Jokes You Probably Missed ---
Note that you really can't buy a home cremation box.


For-Real Blog Updates You Probably Missed
These editions came on on March 31 and are not jokes

March 31 Edition of Bob Jensen's New Bookmarks --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 

March 31 Edition of Bob Jensen's Tidbits --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm 


March 31 Edition of Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

Read the essay of a student who got into all 8 Ivy League schools, Stanford, MIT, and Caltech ---

Jensen Comment
No comment

Quiz:  How well do you know the popular Google Chrome browser?
Click on "Submit" to move on to the next question.

Hackers are attacking Word users with new Microsoft Office zero-day vulnerability ---

Time Magazine:  The 20 Most Successful Tech Failures of All Time ---

Pearson and Chegg Partner for Textbook Rentals ---

Not An April Fools Question
Is Most Published Research Really False?

"The new astrology:  By fetishising mathematical models, economists turned economics into a highly paid pseudoscience," by Alan Jay Levinovitz, AEON, May 2016 --- 

Bob Jensen's threads on what went wrong ---
This is a long, slow loading document

Who was professional baseball's catcher who also was a WW II spy?

'Unlearning' workshops at OU raise 'brainwashing' concerns ---

The University of Oklahoma is defending its decision to offer students in greek life a series of “unlearning” workshops on topics such as racism, sexism, ableism, and classism.

OU Student Affairs, the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, and the Center for Social Justice are jointly sponsoring "Unlearning: Workshops for the Greek Community," the first of which is scheduled to take place Friday, with seven additional sessions throughout April, according to OU Daily.

"It came out of just discussions with greek students saying, 'We feel like these are things in our community, within the whole OU community, and we want to know how to combat them and how to deal with those things,'" said Kylie Frisby, public relations and marketing coordinator at OU Career Services.

While the workshops are tailored toward greek students, registration is open to everyone and is voluntary, though this has not saved the school from significant backlash, with many critics likening the programming to Orwellian reeducation measures.

 Continued in article

Jensen Comment
If only attitude and behavior changes were so simple as making students take "unlearning" workshops. I'm no expert, but I suspect that humans are highly variable in their reactions to these or similar sensitivity training workshops. There must be a huge problem for those individuals, not all, who despise being so overtly manipulated in an Orwellian world. Others more susceptible to "unlearning" most likely have already unlearned. Others are more apt to endure the workshops and pretend to be reformed sinners.

This seems to be a type of thing that's attempted in gangland urban schools over and over again with little success in brainwashing gang members against gang behaviors and drug addictions.  This seems to be the thing that's tried over and over in prison with pedophiles, alcoholics, wife beaters, child beaters, and rapists with only small probabilities of preventing highly recidivism behaviors.

In less obvious ways K-12 students experience "unlearning" attempts by their teachers and counselors over all their years of schooling. Sometimes parents positively support such unlearning. In other instances parents resent such unlearning. One thing that's known is that for many, many children parental attitudes and behaviors are the most powerful factors affecting social attitudes and behaviors. But for other children there's rebellion at some point against parental pleadings.

My point is that if there were such simple solutions to "unlearning" we would've all unlearned by now. Behavior is so complicated that we're not all marching in step in Orwellian parades or electing legislatures that are not gnashing at each other.

Please don't let this be a discouragement to trying new things such as the experiment now taking place among fraternities and sororities at Oklahoma University.

Nothing comes from experiments that never take place.

But experiments must be monitored to discover if they are causing more harm than good such as preaching at your rebellious teenage children that only makes them more difficult to live with.

Things the Amazon Echo Can Do That You Might Not Know About ---

New York Adopts Free Tuition for Residents Below $125,000 in Family Income ---

SUNY and CUNY students from families with incomes up to $125,000 will not pay tuition. But some aid experts are alarmed by requirement that graduates stay in state for same number of years they receive the benefit.

. . .

The governor's office estimates that nearly 940,000 families in New York State will be eligible for free public college tuition when the plan is fully phased in.

The announcement from the governor also noted a "generous maintenance of effort" provision to protect SUNY and CUNY budgets. The provision is designed to address the fear of some educators that free tuition could reduce the pressure to provide adequate budgets to public higher education.

At the same time, a last-minute addition to the bill is alarming some student aid experts, including advocates for free public college tuition. The agreement requires those who receive free tuition to live and work in the state for the same number of years that they receive the awards. If they do not, the scholarships would convert to student loans. The requirement may be deferred if recipients leave the state to complete their undergraduate education, to enroll in graduate school or because of "extreme hardship."

The budget deal also contains two other measures related to college affordability:

$8 million will be provided for promoting and distributing open educational resources (free online education materials) for SUNY and CUNY students. The systems have been urged to focus on high-enrollment courses, with the goal of minimizing or eliminating textbook costs for those courses.


A new grant program will be created for students who attend private colleges in the state, with a maximum award of $3,000. However, private colleges would be required to match the grants, and to freeze tuition for the duration of a student's grant.


Revival of Free Tuition and the Public-Private Split

The action in New York represents a revival of the free tuition concept -- which featured prominently in the presidential campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton last year and then was widely seen as dead after Donald Trump defeated Clinton in November. But Cuomo -- with Sanders at his side -- proposed a version of the plan in January and fought hard for it in negotiations with legislative leaders. Sanders, meanwhile, has also introduced a new version of his free-tuition plan in the U.S. Senate.

Cuomo also battled against private colleges in New York State, most of which opposed the plan. Many New York private colleges largely enroll state residents, and some of these colleges' leaders have feared a loss of enrollment to the SUNY and CUNY systems. Generally, the plan was a tougher sell for Cuomo in the Senate than in the Assembly. But major legislative initiatives in New York tend to be adopted or rejected as part of the overall state budget -- and in this case the Cuomo proposal made it into the final deal.

Many private college leaders opposed the Clinton and Sanders free-tuition plans, and a similar split played out in New York.

On Saturday, as college leaders studied the legislative language, reactions split between public and private institutions.

Gail Mellow, president of LaGuardia Community College of the City University of New York, said she thought the new policy was "extraordinary" and would lead to dramatic shifts in college attendance in the state. She said too many in New York and elsewhere "have blown through their aid attending for-profit schools and leaving without skills." The free-tuition model will "change the discussion" in the state and attract many more students to community college, she believes. "This is going to change the college-going culture," she said, "by taking tuition off the table."

Nancy Zimpher, chancellor of the State University of New York, said she too expects the greatest impact at community colleges, which the vast majority of students attend without room and board costs. But she said that New York State had also changed the free-tuition discussion by including four-year public institutions.

"We may be on the precipice" of a new era, of promoting the idea that many more people need a four-year education than have earned bachelor's degrees in the past, and this would be a historic shift, she said.

Zimpher also noted that the bill includes requirements that students enroll full time and maintain minimum grade point averages. This will "move the completion dial," she said.

But for Mary Beth Labate, president of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities in New York, the news was "dispiriting."

"There is a clear divide in the way students will be treated, depending on whether they go to a public or private institution," she said, adding that the Cuomo plan is poor public policy, given the excellent outcomes for those who attend private colleges.

As to the new funds for private college students, Labate said she wasn't sure that many institutions would find the program viable. She said the requirement that colleges freeze tuition for students when they first receive the aid would appear to mean colleges would end up with different tuition rates for students in different classes, and would have to track the students.

"This would be bureaucratically difficult," she said. "Colleges would have to ask if it was worth it."

The Requirement to Stay in the State

As news of the budget deal spread, one provision drew criticism from advocates for free public higher education. That is the provision that would require recipients to work or live in the state after graduation for the same number of years that they receive support (which presumably would be up to four years, given the requirements that students enroll full time).

Sara Goldrick-Rab, one such advocate and a professor of higher education policy and sociology at Temple University, posted a series of highly critical tweets on the provision, calling it "extortion," "bad public policy" and a "trick." Other aid experts agreed.

Indeed, historically, many scholars of aid policy have said that trying to "tether" students to states won't work, and that graduates will follow jobs elsewhere. But many of those debates have been about states such as Maine that have been losing recent college graduates to other states with more jobs.

SUNY and CUNY, unlike many public systems in other states, have not heavily pushed out-of-state recruitment. As a result, both systems overwhelmingly enroll New York State residents and report that 80-plus percent (higher for CUNY and high for most community colleges) stay in the state after graduation.

Marc Cohen, president of the SUNY Student Assembly, said that his group believes public higher education should be free "without strings," and that he would not want a recent SUNY or CUNY graduate to pay a financial cost "for taking a great job out of the state."

At the same time, he said that he didn't see the provision having an impact on most students. "New York State is the greatest state in the union, and there are great opportunities here," said Cohen, a master's student at (and undergraduate alumnus of) SUNY's Albany campus.

Cohen said the big story was really about the opportunities free tuition would provide. "An affordable and accessible higher education will now be available to many more people," he said. Cohen said he saw the program "propelling New York State to being the leader in public higher education."


What Wasn't in the Bill

The free tuition plan is now part of the New York State budget. As lobbying over Cuomo's proposal intensified, debate was most fraught over two proposals that were not in the final deal.

One was proposed by Cuomo. That was to impose limits on how much private colleges could increase tuition if they wanted in-state students to remain eligible for grants under the Tuition Assistance Program, which is one of the most generous student aid programs in the country. Private college officials said that the tuition limits were inappropriate to impose on colleges, whose independence should include the right to set their own tuition rates. While New York State's private colleges include some relatively well-endowed institutions that attract national student bodies, most of the colleges depend on tuition for their budgets and enroll almost entirely students from within the state.

The other was an idea -- rumored in the last two weeks -- that the state would pay for free tuition in part with a 10 percent tax on unrestricted gifts to SUNY campuses. This idea (which Cuomo said he opposed) worried many SUNY leaders. But this, too, was not in the final deal.

An Old Idea/A New Idea

Free tuition for public higher education is not a new idea. Many public colleges -- including City College of CUNY -- were founded that way. For a time, all of CUNY was tuition-free, but that ended in 1976, with New York City facing a fiscal crisis.

The idea was always on the wish list of various activist groups but was largely dismissed by political leaders as unrealistic.

Then in 2014, Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam, a Republican, proposed and quickly won approval for making community college free in his state. It was the Tennessee plan that led President Obama to propose in 2015 a state-federal partnership that would have made community college free in participating states.

Congress never acted on the Obama proposal, but many individual community college districts -- in particular in California -- have embraced the idea with a variety of approaches to free community college.

 Continued in article

Jensen Questions
How much will this NY free college program be a pay-as-you-go tax collection system versus how much will become an unfunded entitlement burdening future taxpayers? This is problematic much like Medicare and Medicaid in that college budget increases, like health care expenses, grow at a rate greatly exceeding the general inflation rate.

I have some questions that maybe others can answer. In states like Texas the tuition is relatively low but all students are assessed "fees" that are relatively high that help support athletics, student activities of various kinds, etc. When my daughter attended the University of Texas I discovered that the university was very creative in adding to fees while holding tuition down. Will all such fees be waved as well for students legible for free tuition in New York? Or will fees at NY universities be waived for all students?

Will students eligible for Federal Aid and other scholarships have to pay part of that funding toward tuition as is being done now or will that future aid provide more money to students for room, board, car expenses, etc.?

What happens in the case of divorced parents having highly unequal incomes. In one scenario custody of the children was given to the father who is still writing books that never sell and a birth mother who works at Wall Street and does not have custody of her children. Suppose that over a period of 15 years she paid officially $30,000 per year in child support and alimony plus another $50,000 secretly on the side so her kids could get private schooling. Will her children be eligible for free NY college tuition even though she now has an income of over $2+ million per year? If so, will this lead to phony on-paper divorces just so children can get a free college education? My wife and I know of a person (the daughter of a friend) in Texas who just got a welfare divorce and is still living with her former (working) husband. Even worse suppose that one parent making tons of money after a divorce never contributed more than the bare minimum child support required by the court 15 years ago. Does that parent's high income prevent the children from getting free college in New York even though that parent will not contribute a farthing for their college educations?

Of course there are the other ways to cheat the system that are now commonly used for welfare cheating. A New York woman living with a man partly in his mansion and driving his new Lincoln may still get housing subsidies, food stamps, and aid to dependent children. Supposedly her kids will now get free college educations.

There are all sorts of ways to make high incomes in the underground economy where services for cash are never reported. The contractor who attached a garage to my barn gave me a huge cash discount. I've no idea if he reported his profit to the government, and I did not ask that question. Knowing his hatred for taxes my guess is that his cash jobs did not get reported on his income tax returns. It's impossible to estimate the size of the underground economy in the USA, but I've seen estimates of over $2 trillion per year. Until the USA does away with cash (like is being attempted now in India, Kenya, and some other parts of the world) there will always be massive and criminal cheating in the underground economy.

That $125,000 threshold for free college in New York provides a huge incentive for some people to shift into the underground economy when they have a choice. A NY garage builder who currently fully reports and pays taxes on his $200,000 net profit now has an incentive to offer cash discounts for some of his jobs. This is how entitlements programs become moral hazards such as when Grandma's estate is bled out to heirs in advance so she can get free nursing care paid for fully by Medicaid.

Disciplines With the Most New Assistant Professor Hires ---

Jensen Comment
Keep in mind that these are results of a survey. There are many more hires in all or most of these disciplines.

Bob Jensen's threads on careers ---

Apple and Amazon Are Hiring a Ton of MBAs ---

Supreme Court nominee Gorsuch lifted from earlier works in his scholarly papers: Report ---

Other celebrates who plagiarized including Jane Goodall, Martin Luther King, Jr., Vladimir Putin, Mexico’s President (Enrique Peña Nieto), Arianna Huffington, Seinfeld's wife, Fareed Zakaria, etc. ---

When making excuses for plagiarism, celebrities and others usually assert that their assistants or ghost writers did the plagiarizing, although taking credit for writings of others without acknowledgement  is equally unethical since the 19th century when academics commonly took credit for works of their students without acknowledgement ---
I've not seen where Judge Gorsuch is making such a claim when confronted with the recent allegations, but this may well be the reason. I flunked a student who complained that his employee who wrote the term paper did the plagiarizing.

An Introduction to Game Theory & Strategic Thinking: A Free Online Course from Yale University ---

MOOC --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massive_open_online_course

Your Daily Briefing From the Chronicle of Higher Education on April 6, 2017

Free MOOCs of a Different Type from edX
Not your grandfather's MOOCs.

Thought the heyday of the MOOC was over? Think again, says Anant Agarwal, chief executive of the online-learning platform edX. Mr. Agarwal dropped by The Chronicle's offices on Wednesday from Boston to tell us about "MOOCs 2.0" and edX’s latest venture: MicroMasters.---

Offered in 40 different topics, MicroMasters are designed with job-seekers in mind and are the equivalent of 25 to 50 percent of a full master’s degree. While learning is free, paying $1,000 gets you an accreditation from a top-tier university like MIT or Columbia. A MicroMasters can help you get a job, or be counted as credit on a full master’s course if you want to keep studying.

Backing from big-name employers like IBM and Walmart, and built-in integrity mechanisms to prevent cheating, mean those online courses are wholly different creatures from the MOOCs of four or five years ago, Mr. Agarwal said. —
Lindsay McKenzie

The MOOC Model Revisited
"Massive Open Online Courses: How: 'The Social” Alters the Relationship Between Learners and Facilitators'," by Bonnie Stewart, Inside Higher Ed, April 30, 2012 --- Click Here

Steve Martin Will Teach His First Online Course in Comedy ---
Steve could also teach an advanced course on how to play the banjo

Bob Jensen's threads on MOOCs ---

Nobel Lectures: From the Literature Laureates, 1986 to 2006
Paperback – September 30, 2008 by The New Press (Compiler)

Among the many Nobel Laureates who have spoken on the campus of Trinity University (where I taught for 24 years) nearly all the Economics Nobel Laureates have been on campus speaking on the theme "My Evolution as an Economist" ---
Transcripts of the first 23 lectures appear in the sixth edition of the 2014 MIT Press volume, Lives of the Laureates, edited by professors Roger W. Spencer and ​David A. Macpherson ---

One memorable take away when I listened to Franco Modigliani speak was that he did some of his best research while teaching five courses per semester back in the days when professors were not given so much relief from teaching to do their research and writing. I struck me that that perhaps professors like me who only taught two courses in five hours of class time per week were perhaps given too much relief from teaching. I don't recall ever having a class with more than twenty students in my 40 years as a full-time professor at four different universities. Perhaps I'd have been a better researcher with five classes per semester.

How to Mislead With Statistics

Doctors' Incomes Are on the Rise:  Medscape Physician Compensation Report 2017 ---

Jensen Comment
I assume the data are net of expenses like malpractice insurance, office staff salaries, rent, utilities, depreciation, etc. But there's more financial risk is such compensation than for physicians that are paid by clinics and the government that pays physicians without charging them for malpractice insurance, office staff salaries, etc. Also a doctor working out of her or his own office (such as a general practitioner) may pay all such expenses whereas an emergency room doctor may pay for some expenses like malpractice insurance but not expenses for nurses, technicians, office space, etc.

Personally, I think it's very difficult to make physician compensation comparisons across a myriad business models that deal with their differing expenses while practicing their craft.

It's also difficult to make comparisons with other professions such as accounting. A CPA in general probably borrowed much less in student loans before going to work full time relative to a brain surgeon who may have ad to borrow across 10-15 years of college and sacrificed other years of full income during internship and residency years.  These complicate compensation comparisons across professions.

Slide Show:  From disused stadiums to deserted airports: Billion-dollar wastes of money (most were wasted taxpayer dollars) ---

The 5 best e-readers you can buy ---

Bob Jensen's neglected threads about e-readers (informative for history buffs) ---

Unlocking Excel's Hidden Powers ---

Allan Bloom's 1987 book The Closing of the American Mind ---

Heather Mac Donald --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heather_Mac_Donald

Another Speech Shut Down
Protest outside event at Claremont McKenna prevents Heather Mac Donald event from having an in-person audience. Question period of appearance at UCLA is disrupted as well ---

"The Coddling of the American Mind:  In the name of emotional well-being, college students are increasingly demanding protection from words and ideas they don’t like. Here’s why that’s disastrous for education—and mental health," by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt, The Atlantic, September 2015 ---

Jonathan Haidt on the Cultural Roots of Campus Rage An unorthodox professor explains the ‘new religion’ that drives the intolerance and violence at places like Middlebury and Berkeley ---

When a mob at Vermont’s Middlebury College shut down a speech by social scientist Charles Murray a few weeks ago, most of us saw it as another instance of campus illiberalism. Jonathan Haidt saw something more—a ritual carried out by adherents of what he calls a “new religion,” an auto-da-fé against a heretic for a violation of orthodoxy.

“The great majority of college students want to learn. They’re perfectly reasonable, and they’re uncomfortable with a lot of what’s going on,” Mr. Haidt, a psychologist and professor of ethical leadership at New York University’s Stern School of Business, tells me during a recent visit to his office. “But on each campus there are some true believers who have reoriented their lives around the fight against evil.”

These believers are transforming the campus from a citadel of intellectual freedom into a holy space—where white privilege has replaced original sin, the transgressions of class and race and gender are confessed not to priests but to “the community,” victim groups are worshiped like gods, and the sinned-against are supplicated with “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings.”

The fundamentalists may be few, Mr. Haidt says, but they are “very intimidating” since they wield the threat of public shame. On some campuses, “they’ve been given the heckler’s veto, and are often granted it by an administration who won’t stand up to them either.”

. . .

Today’s college students also are tomorrow’s leaders—and employees. Companies are already encountering problems with recent graduates unprepared for the challenges of the workplace. “Work requires a certain amount of toughness,” Mr. Haidt says. “Colleges that prepare students to expect a frictionless environment where there are bureaucratic procedures and adult authorities to rectify conflict are very poorly prepared for the workplace. So we can expect a lot more litigation in the coming few years.”

If you lean left—even if you adhere to the campus orthodoxy, or to certain elements of it—you might consider how the failure to respect pluralism puts your own convictions at risk of a backlash. “People are sick and tired of being called racist for innocent things they’ve said or done,” Mr. Haidt observes. “The response to being called a racist unfairly is never to say, ‘Gee, what did I do that led to me being called this? I should be more careful.’ The response is almost always, ‘[Expletive] you!’ ”

He offers this real-world example: “I think that the ‘deplorables’ comment could well have changed the course of human history.”

Bob Jensen's threads on political correctness ---

Wake  Forrest's Politically Correct Faculty Want No Part of "Sneaking Capitalist Ideas" Into the University by Way of Koch Brothers' Millions

An Anti-Koch Meltdown at Wake Forest ---

Denizens of the ivory tower are rarely nuanced in their statements about Charles and David Koch. But the professorial ruminations published last month at Wake Forest University break new ground by showing that disdain for conservatives weighs more heavily on faculty minds than academic freedom.

About two years ago, Wake Forest professor James Otteson came to the administration with an idea: a new center devoted to the study of happiness. Such programs are all the rage in psychology departments, but Mr. Otteson, a scholar of classical philosophy who has written books on Adam Smith, offered a unique interdisciplinary approach. Planning began for a center that draws scholars from across the university to study the political, economic, moral and cultural institutions that encourage human happiness. It was named the Eudaimonia Institute, after Aristotle’s term for flourishing.

None of this elicited objections from the faculty until last September, when the university announced it had accepted $3.7 million from the Charles Koch Foundation to support the institute over five years. The faculty senate then formed two committees to investigate Eudaimonia: one to report on the institute itself and another to study Wake Forest’s policies related to Koch Foundation funding.

The first committee, in a report published last month, urged Wake Forest to “SEVER ALL CONNECTIONS TO THE CHARLES KOCH FOUNDATION.” The original text, which went on at some length, was also in boldface and underlined. Where, one wonders, were the exclamation points and angry emojis?

The other committee concluded that the foundation’s “parasitical” behavior threatened Wake Forest’s “academic integrity, financial autonomy, and institutional governance.” The faculty worrying about the Kochs’ fortune seem to have forgotten that their campus exists in large part thanks to donations from the family behind R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.

The situation was deemed so grave that the latter committee recommended canceling the Eudaimonia Institute’s April conference, freezing all hiring, and requiring that its publications and presentations be reviewed by another group of faculty ahead of time. Earlier this year the faculty announced they would not give credit to students taking a business class taught by Mr. Otteson—even though the course had nothing to do with Eudaimonia or the Koch Foundation. According to Daniel Hammond, a Wake Forest economics professor, the course would have earned students credit only if they remained business majors. If they changed their major, it would not count for graduation. Under pressure, the business school dropped the class as a prerequisite for majors.

Citing the New Yorker magazine writer Jane Mayer’s investigations into the Koch family, both committees concluded that Eudaimonia is really a way of sneaking capitalist ideas into the university. Never mind the ample evidence that the Koch brothers, who are open about their own ideas, are interested in exploring other points of view. The report even includes links to a public forum held by the Charles Koch Institute with guests from liberal organizations such as the Brookings Institution.

The controversies over Koch cash—stoked in many cases by the George Soros-funded campus organization UnKoch My Campus—are not new. Faculty at the Catholic University of America complained last year that a $10 million donation from the Charles Koch Foundation would undermine the school’s religious teachings. The United Negro College Fund was roundly criticized after it took $25 million of Koch money in 2014.

But the professors at Wake Forest have hit a new low. On March 15 the faculty senate passed a nonbinding resolution against the Koch funding by a vote of 17-9. The provost offered only a lukewarm defense of Eudaimonia. “I have faith,” he wrote to me, “in our faculty and administrative practices that protect faculty research, creative work and teaching from any improper influence.”

Eudaimonia already has safeguards in place to ensure intellectual freedom. Even before the Koch money was pledged, it had published a “Declaration of Research Independence,” which states that the institute “maintains sole control over the selection of researchers, the composition of research teams, or the research design, methodology, analysis, or findings of EI research projects, as well as the content of EI-sponsored educational programs.”

Ana Iltis, a Wake Forest bioethicist and faculty adviser to Eudaimonia, told me this week that she was surprised by her colleagues’ “unwillingness to look at the work we’re doing and take it seriously.” She noted that the institute’s board includes people from a variety of religious, political, racial and academic backgrounds. Bill Leonard —another board member and a former dean of the Divinity School—led the fight for gays and lesbians to be admitted to the Baptist graduate school.

The controversy is even more ridiculous when considering the differences between the Eudaimonia Institute and other Wake Forest centers. Take the Pro Humanitate Institute, whose executive director, Melissa Harris-Perry, made a name for herself as a progressive activist on MSNBC. That institute does not pretend to ask life’s big, open-ended questions. Rather, its mission statement declares that its purpose is “connected to clear practices with meaningful social justice outcomes.”

No matter what these institutes focus on, the idea that other faculty might want to censor their work is worrying. Even more troubling is the notion that professors from one department could determine that courses taught in another department are not worthy of credit toward graduation.

Professors opposed to this madness are finally speaking up. A new petition has been circulating among the faculty objecting to the proposed censorship. Citing the recent statement regarding “truth-seeking” by Robert P. George and Cornel West, the signers note, “We stand in support of diversity and inclusion of all opinions and ideologies at Wake Forest University and celebrate such diversity as the character of our community.”

Continued in article

Harvard and Princeton Leading Scholars Argue for "Truth Seeking"---

Stylistically and politically, Robert P. George and Cornel West don’t have much in common. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University, is one of the country’s most prominent conservative intellectuals. West, a professor of the practice of public philosophy and African and African-American studies at Harvard University, is a self-described “radical Democrat” who, in addition to many books, once released a spoken-word album.

So when George and West agree on something and lend their names to it, people take notice -- as they did this week, when the pair published a statement in support of “truth seeking, democracy and freedom of thought and expression.” It’s a politely worded denunciation of what George and West call “campus illiberalism,” or the brand of thinking that led to this month’s incident at Middlebury College, where students prevented an invited speaker from talking and a professor was physically attacked by some who were protesting the invitation.

“It is all too common these days for people to try to immunize from criticism opinions that happen to be dominant in their particular communities,” reads the statement. “Sometimes this is done by questioning the motives and thus stigmatizing those who dissent from prevailing opinions; or by disrupting their presentations; or by demanding that they be excluded from campus or, if they have already been invited, disinvited.”

Sometimes, it says, “students and faculty members turn their backs on speakers whose opinions they don’t like or simply walk out and refuse to listen to those whose convictions offend their values. Of course, the right to peacefully protest, including on campuses, is sacrosanct. But before exercising that right, each of us should ask: Might it not be better to listen respectfully and try to learn from a speaker with whom I disagree? Might it better serve the cause of truth seeking to engage the speaker in frank civil discussion?”

All of us “should be willing -- even eager -- to engage with anyone who is prepared to do business in the currency of truth-seeking discourse by offering reasons, marshaling evidence and making arguments,” George and West wrote. “The more important the subject under discussion, the more willing we should be to listen and engage -- especially if the person with whom we are in conversation will challenge our deeply held -- even our most cherished and identity-forming -- beliefs.”

Such “an ethos,” they conclude, “protects us against dogmatism and groupthink, both of which are toxic to the health of academic communities and to the functioning of democracies.”

George said in an interview Wednesday that signatures for the statement were flowing in at rate of several per minute, and that the names reflect all points of the ideological spectrum. “We’re gratified,” he said, adding that the statement aims to “encourage -- put the courage in -- people to stand up for themselves” and for the values of the academy.

“The goal is a heightened sense among faculty, administrators and students -- all three categories -- that they must refuse to tolerate campus illiberalism,” George said. “It’s a shared responsibility of everybody to not only refuse to participate in it but to refuse to accept it. In order for colleges and universities to fulfill their missions, there has to be an ethos, an atmosphere, an environment, in which people feel free to speak their minds -- where people are challenging each other, and thus learning.”

The immediate impetus for the statement was indeed the shouting down of Murray, author of the controversial book The Bell Curve, at Middlebury; the professor who was injured at the protest is the next signatory, after George and West. But the authors say they’ve long been concerned with a turning tide on colleges campuses that’s led to the shouting down and disinvitation of invited speakers, and other forms of what is arguably intellectual censorship. They’ve been trying to model the kind of civil dialogue they’re advocating for several years, teaching and speaking together publicly about the benefits of a liberal arts education -- including recently at the American Enterprise Institute.

Yet college illiberalism continues to grow, in their view. Just recently, for example, George said, Peter Singer, Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton, who has argued in favor of abortion and euthanasia for severely disabled infants in some instances, was interrupted by disability rights protesters throughout an appearance via Skype at the University of Victoria in Canada.

George blamed the phenomenon on a campus culture of rightful inclusion that has been somehow “corrupted into the idea that people have the right to be free from hearing positions they disagree with.” That’s exacerbated, he said, by an emergent “consumer model” of education, in which colleges and universities competing for enrollments don’t want to offend their “customers,” even if the product -- higher education -- is supposed to be “challenging students’ deeply held convictions and helping them to lead examined lives.”

Singer announced on Twitter that he’d signed the petition. George pointed out that Mary Ann Glendon, Learned Hand Professor of Law at Harvard University and former U.S. ambassador to the Holy See, who is anti-abortion and in many ways Singer’s ideological opposite, also signed on.

Continued in article

Huffington Post:  The 10 Worst Colleges For Free Speech: 2017 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on political correctness ---

Download The Chronicle's special (free) issue of Digital Campus  ---

NY Times:  Student Loan Forgiveness Program Approval Letters May Be Invalid ---

New Byzantine Airline Accountancy:  Extremely technical rules require voo doo and crystal ball estimation under the new revenue recognition standard

Airlines Make More Money Selling Miles Than Seats:  The golden goose isn’t your ticket or bag fee—it’s the credit card you use to collect frequent flier miles ---

 . . .

Investors have failed to appreciate how crucial these programs are to airline profitability amid the stability consolidation brought, said Joseph DeNardi, a senior airline analyst with Stifel Financial Corp. in Baltimore. Since August, he’s issued a steady stream of client notes arguing that the market has undervalued the five largest airlines.

DeNardi has repeatedly explained that investors have little insight into the billions of dollars large banks pay for these affiliations. At each airline investor call or conference, DeNardi has steadfastly prodded executives for greater reporting detail.

In many ways, the Big Three U.S. airlines have organized themselves into two distinct businesses. There’s the traditional activity—the one with jets—which involves pricing seats for as much as possible, collecting a bag fee, and selling some food and drinks while keeping a close eye on costs. The other business is the sale of miles—mostly to the big banks, but also to companies that range from car rental firms to hotels to magazine peddlers.

The latter has expanded so much that it accounts for more than half of all profits for some airlines, including American Airlines Group Inc., the world’s largest.

 Jensen Comment
Accounting for frequent flier awards and  "sales of miles" has always been problematic due to time differences between award dates and when customers book flights and uncertainties whether the awards will expire without being used by customers.
This entails something akin to technical voo doo and crystal ball estimation.

From The Wall Street Journal Accounting Educators' Reviews on June 20, 2002

TITLE: Frequent-Flier Programs Get an Overhaul
REPORTER:  Ron Lieber 
DATE: Jun 18, 2002 
PAGE: D1 LINK: http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB1024344325710894400.djm,00.html  
TOPICS: Frequent-flier programs, Accounting

SUMMARY: Many frequent-flier programs are offering alternative rewards in exchange for frequent-flier miles. Questions focus on accounting for frequent-flier programs and redemption of miles.

1.) What is a frequent-flier program? List three possible ways to account for frequent-flier miles awarded to customers in exchange for purchases. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each accounting method.

2.) Why are companies offering alternative rewards in exchange for frequent-flier miles? How is the redemption of miles reported in the financial statements? Discuss accounting issues that arise if the miles are redeemed for awards that are less costly than originally anticipated.

3.) The article states that the 'surge in unredeemed points is causing bookkeeping headaches.' Why would unredeemed points cause bookkeeping headaches? Would companies be better off if the points were never redeemed? If a company created a liability for awarded points, in what circumstances could the liability be removed from the balance sheet?

4.) Refer to the related article. Describe Jet Blue's frequent-flier program77. How does stipulating a one-year expiration on frequent-flier points change accounting for a frequent-flier program?

Reviewed By: Judy Beckman, University of Rhode Island 
Reviewed By: Benson Wier, Virginia Commonwealth University 
Reviewed By: Kimberly Dunn, Florida Atlantic University

TITLE: JetBlue Joins the Fray But With Big Caveat: Miles Expire in a Year 
REPORTER: Ron Lieber 
ISSUE: Jun 18, 2002 
LINK: http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB102434443936545600.djm,00.html


New Byzantine Airline Accountancy:  Extremely technical rules require voo doo and crystal ball estimation under the new revenue recognition standard
Book:  Foundations of Airline Finance

by Bijan Vasigh et al.
Routledge, Second Edition, 2015
Beginning on Page 154:  Note the illustrations

This is an excellent illustration how accounting is more than counting beans and how specialized airline accountants and auditors must become in extremely technical issues.

How to Avoid Making Inheritance Mistakes ---

Test your Social Security knowledge in this five-question quiz ---

Jensen Comment
Check your full retirement age as calculated by the government ---
Circumstances can vary with respect to various things like wealth, health, and job satisfaction, but my advice for most people is to not start your SS income until you reach the full retirement age or later. This does not mean that you cannot "retire" or shift to part-time work before full retirement age. You should, however, read abouit details in the law regarding full retirement age. For more details first go to
Then discuss all your retirements options with an expert that is often provided free by your employer or other retirement plan employee. Outfits like TIAA and Fidelity usually have campus visits by retirement planners that provide free services to college employees.

In some course on campus try to make financial literacy part of the curriculum, including retirement and tax alternatives.

Time Magazine:  Ranking of the 50 States as to Retirement Living (Say what?) ---

Jensen Comment
I don't think the folks that ranked New Hampshire at Number One visited The Granite State this winter. After the blue bonnets fade in Texas and the azaleas blossom in Florida we'll still have a foot of snow on the ground. Erika and I picked New Hampshire for our retirement. We wanted four seasons, low taxes, no traffic, mountain views, cool summers, and a small village environment. We're not disappointed here, but what we wanted for our retirement certainly will not suit most retirees, including those up here that choose to move south from New Hampshire for their retirement. I suspect what the majority of people want most in retirement is closeness to family. My cousins and friends in Iowa prefer to retire near family in Iowa. They head south (Florida, Texas, Arizona, California, etc.) for a couple of months in the winter, but they choose to retire where they've lived most of their lives and raised their children --- Iowa.

Our children were spread from California to Wisconsin to Maine. So we decided to make them visit us. But most other retirees probably prefer to live closer to at least some of their children.

MIT:  Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s suggestion that job loss due to automation is 50 years off is laughable (or cryable) ---

Richard Feynman --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Feynman

Richard Feynman’s “Notebook Technique” Will Help You Learn Any Subject–at School, at Work, or in Life ---

Jensen Comment
In many ways this is similar to creating a Web module for a topic that you want to learn or learn more about. One "page" in the module might be a glossary of terms related to the topic. Other pages are created over the years as you stumble upon new parts of the topic that you learned or created. One such module is my huge module on accounting for derivative financial instruments and hedging activities (ala FAS 133). As I was invited to speak about this topic at universities and consult about the topic with accounting firms and companies I kept adding new documents to the module ---

How Wonderful
A Treasure Trove of Lithium Discovered Near the Megafactory Where Elon Musk will Turn Litium Into Millions Upon Millions of Batteries ---
The Great Nevada Lithium Rush to Fuel the New Economy

Jensen Comment
And maybe Apple will no longer have to rely on the Chinese to make so many of it's iPhones.
How much credit for all of this should we give to President Trump?
Do we really know what Musk talked about in his private talks with Donald Trump?

I certainly don't know anything about anything except what I read on the Web.


How to Mislead With Statistics
Does it Pay to Get a Double Major in College?

Jensen Comment
The article is misleading in that the most important variables leading to advantages of double majoring are so dependent upon circumstances. For example. top medical schools, law schools, graduate business schools, etc. lean toward accepting applicants who double majored such as a major in computer science and engineering or a major in mathematics and computer science. My point is that a double major can help get you into a prestigious graduate school that, in turn, opens doors to career opportunities that are difficult to get if you did not get a graduate degree (say a law degree) from a prestigious university.

Secondly, even if you did not get into a prestigious graduate school the knowledge you gained in selected double majors can become important factors to performance success and opportunities later in life. Some of my accounting graduates who also double majored in Spanish or Chinese found that they could get opportunities in Mexico and China not available to some of their peers who did not know Spanish or Chinese. Spanish was especially important to my students who worked for the Big Four CPA firms in Texas where there are usually a high concentration of clients doing business south of the Rio Grande.

Less than 25% of the hires of large CPA firms eventually become partners in those firms for various reasons. A double major, however, might increase the odds in particular circumstances. I had an accounting student who I thought had very little chance of making partner in the Houston office of a Big Four accounting program. However, since he'd double majored in accounting and Russian he was given an opportunity to transfer to the Moscow office of his firm. Working in Russia, in my opinion, is one of the main reason he became a partner. If he'd stayed in the Houston Office I doubt that he'd have become a partner in the firm.

My point is that double majoring may not pay off across many combinations of majors, but it often pays off in selected combinations in particular circumstances where the payoffs are averaged out in large studies of many combinations of double majors.

If you did not double major you may become a specialist with self study. I had a student who listened to me when I suggested that learning more and more about financial instrument derivative contracts and FAS 133 rules beyond what he'd learned in my theory course might give him an edge in his career. He took me up on it and spent week ends and summers becoming more expert on accounting for derivative financial instruments and hedging activities. When his supervisors in a Houston Office of a Big Four firm discovered he had this knowledge, he was assigned to some really big bank audits entailing billions of dollars in derivatives contracts. This allowed him to leap frog over his peers who did not have his exceptional knowledge. Many factors led to his success, but I like to think becoming a self-study expert on the really tough FAS 133 helped him a lot in life.

Dan Meyer's Popular  Math Blog:  1,000 Math Teachers Tell Me What They Think About Calculators in the Classroom ---

Replication --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Replication

Robustness --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robust_statistics

What Matters for Replication ---

Replication Versus Robustness in the American Economic Review ---
Is the AER Replicable? And is it Robust? Evidence from a Class Project

MIT:  Perverse Incentives and Replication in Science  ---

From Retraction Watch on March 28, 2017

SCOPUS, the publication database maintained by Elsevier, has discontinued nearly 300 journals since 2013, including multiple journals published by OMICS Publishing Group.

Although the reasons the widely used database gives for discontinuing journals often vary, in all cases OMICS journals were removed over “Publication Concerns.”

Here’s what SCOPUS said recently about how it vets journals.

Two biologists guilty of misconduct, says University investigation ---

Five retractions for engineering duo in South Korea over duplication, fraudulent data ---

The Academy Created a Monster:  Fraudulent Journals
A fictitious scientist called Anna O. Szust applied to join the editorial boards of 360 journals—and 48 accepted:  Journals without standards harm science and universities that count them toward tenure and promotion  ---

Author Surprised by Unannounced Retraction of Three Papers (for extensive duplication of her own work)

Book Review/Interview on Retraction Watch ---

Jana Rieger is a researcher in Edmonton, Alberta. And now, she’s also a novelist. Her new book, A Course in Deception,” draws on her experiences in science, and weaves a tale of how greed and pressures to publish can lead to even worse outcomes than the sort we write about at Retraction Watch. We interviewed Rieger about the novel.

Another retraction for medical student who confessed to cooking data ---

Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates ---

Bob Jensen's Threads on Replication ---

Retraction Watch:  “Strange. Very strange:” Retracted nutrition study reappears in new journal ---

Busted: Researcher used fake contact info for co-authors ---

A Replications Research Reading List --- https://replicationnetwork.com/research-on-replications/

Bob Jensen's Lament on the Tendency for Academic Accounting Research to Not be Replicated/Validated ---

Video:  Congress just voted to allow your internet provider to sell your online history and data — here are various ways that might protect your privacy ---
These days nothing's guaranteed on the Internet

But did Congress really allow your internet provider to sell your online history and data?  It's complicated!
The Phony Internet Privacy Panic:  The GOP reverses a rule intended to help Google and Amazon, not you ---

Perhaps you’ve read that Congress voted to empower cable providers to collect your personal information and sell it, unraveling “landmark” privacy protections from the Federal Communications Commission. The partisans and reporters pumping this claim are—let’s be kind—uninformed, so allow us to add a few facts.

The House voted this week to rescind an Obama Administration regulation requiring that cable customers “opt in” to allow data mining of their preferences, which allows companies to feature targeted ads or improve service. The rule passed in a partisan FCC vote last year but never took effect. This belies the idea that Comcast and other invented villains will have some “new freedom” to auction off your data. President Trump is expected to sign the bill, which already passed the Senate. The result will be . . . the status quo.

The FCC didn’t roll out these rules in response to gross privacy invasions. The agency lacked jurisdiction until 2015 when it snatched authority from the Federal Trade Commission by reclassifying the internet as a public utility. The FTC had punished bad actors in privacy and data security for years, with more than 150 enforcement actions.

One best privacy practice is offering customers the choice to “opt out”—most consumers are willing to exchange their viewing habits for more personalized experiences, and the Rand Pauls of the world can elude collection. Cable customers have this option now. For sensitive information like Social Security numbers, consumers have to opt in. This framework protected privacy while allowing innovation.

The FCC ditched this approach and promulgated a rule that, curiously, did not apply to companies like Google or Amazon, whose business model includes monetizing massive data collection—what panda videos you watch or which gardening tools you buy. The rule was designed to give an edge to Twitter and friends in online advertising, a field already dominated by Silicon Valley.

The crew pushing the rule say cable companies deserve scrutiny because it is easy to change websites but hard to change internet-service providers. The reality is the reverse: The average internet user connects through six devices, according to a paper last year from Georgia Tech, and moves across locations and networks. But which search engine do you use, whether on your home laptop or iPhone at work? Probably Google. Plus: Encryption and other technology will soon shield some 70% of the internet from service providers.

What this week’s tumult means for your privacy online is nothing. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and FTC Chairwoman Maureen Ohlhausen issued a joint statement saying they’d work together to build a “comprehensive and consistent framework” for privacy that doesn’t favor some tech companies over others. The interim is governed by FCC guidelines that have been in place for years.

These details haven’t stopped headlines like “How the Republicans Sold Your Privacy to Internet Providers.” That one ran atop a piece by President Obama’s FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who continues to shore up his legacy as a partisan. The misinformation campaign is an attempt to bully Republicans and Chairman Pai out of reversing eight years of capricious regulation. Both deserve credit for not buckling amid the phony meltdown.

Educational Sabotage: New Required School Policies Allow Lawlessness in Schools
by former ghetto student Walter E. Williams (now an economics professor)

Jensen Comment
Minority students are not be short changed nearly as much in terms of money spent per child as they are being short changed in terms of safety and emotional environment.

Fired Because He Wouldn't Dumb Down a Course?
AAUP report concludes that a professor at Community College of Aurora was likely fired for refusing to compromise on rigor in his courses as part of a "student success" initiative.


Jensen Comment
There are always exceptions, but in general tough academic courses get lower student evaluations. Exhibit A contains the "Level of Difficulty" ratings among the top teachers on RateMyProfessors.com ---
Also see

The State of Personal Finance, Faculty-Staff Edition:
Survey of campus employees finds professors focus on saving for retirement and doubt their financial literacy; administrative staff worry more about the near term

Jensen Comment
What many workers in general forget is that the Federal Reserve virtually eliminated low risk, safe financial savings that in the past paid upwards of six percent per year in interest and now pay very close to zero interest. This means that savers must take on more financial risk to get decent returns on savings, particularly now that employers are shying away from fixed-benefit retirement plans.

Bob Jensen's free helpers on personal finance are at

I'm a long-time advocate that financial literacy should be added to the common core of skills in higher education. For example, the most common cause in breakdowns in relationships like marriage is ignorance about finance at the heart of relationships.

California newborns would get state-seeded college savings accounts under bill ---

Jensen Comment
Families can elect to opt out of the program. Maine, Nevada and Rhode Island have somewhat similar opt-out savings programs. The California program may be more controversial with a potentially very expensive matching program over the years for amounts contributed into the 529 Plans that defer taxes. Presumably there are no penalties over the years for leaving the states.

These programs suffer from other dangerous entitlements programs in that they are not sufficiently funded such that as they exponentially grow in obligations over the years they burden future taxpayers with promises that those taxpayers have little or no control over because they operate like contracts over time. Future taxpayers are obligated to make good on promises (think matching funds obligations promised today for future years) made by their ancestors who were not taxed at the time of their promises.

Until current interest rates grow much more these 529 plans earn almost no interest income annually, thereby making them lousy savings plans relative to more risky equity investments unless mutual fund plans are available. They also take money away from people least likely to save enough for retirement.

Time Magazine:  The Way We Teach Math Is Holding Women Back ---


MIT:  The Road to Clean Liquid Fuels Has Speed Bumps

These days, it can seem that the only path toward a clean-energy future is to go all-electric. But many researchers are still interested in the idea of developing liquid fuels that can be burned without the same damage to the environment caused by setting fire to gasoline. Here, we take a look through the MIT Technology Review archive to see how the quest to create them refuses to dry up.

The Price of Biofuels

For a while back there, America was totally obsessed with biofuels. But as well as providing only marginal environmental benefits, the rush to turn corn into fuel saw over-eager investors ignoring some obvious economic problems, too.


Sun + Water = Fuel

Nature is already able to create its own fuel from the simplest of ingredients. Back in 2008, we spoke with MIT chemist Daniel Nocera, who had successfully mimicked one of the steps in photosynthesis when plants split water into oxygen and hydrogen.


The Ideal Fuel

Over time, scientists have gradually tried to streamline the concept of artificial photosynthesis. Seven years after Nocera showed off his attempts to mimic nature, Peidong Yang from the University of California, Berkeley, took the process to the nanoscale.


The Road to Solar Fuels Hits a Speed Bump

Sadly, we’ve still not managed to perfect a synthetic version of a plant’s energy reaction. While we can now efficiently split water to get hydrogen, we’re still searching for a way to make cost-effective fuels using the technique.


The World’s Largest Artificial Sun Could Help Generate Clean Fuel


There are other ways to create clean fuels, though. Most recently, a team of researchers has built a scorching laboratory setup in order to figure out how to rip hydrogen from water at the intense temperatures generated by concentrated sunlight.


Clean Fuels from Greenhouse Gas

And how about using the emissions from our current energy production to do some good? With the right materials in hand, it may be possible to convert carbon dioxide from power plant exhaust into new kinds of transportation fuels.

If you get one you get them all, because they all look alike in terms of top SAT scores
Is the Ivy League’s Admission Bias a ‘Trade Secret’?

Fired Because He Wouldn't Dumb Down a Course?
AAUP report concludes that a professor at Community College of Aurora was likely fired for refusing to compromise on rigor in his courses as part of a "student success" initiative.


Jensen Comment
There are always exceptions, but in general tough academic courses get lower student evaluations. Exhibit A contains the "Level of Difficulty" ratings among the top teachers on RateMyProfessors.com ---
Also see

NYT:  How to Con Black Law Students ---

Jensen Comment
A 25% pass rate on the CPA examination may sound pretty good to a graduate school of accountancy, but a 50% pass rate on the bar exam is a kiss of death for a law school where a 75% passage rate is considered marginal.

I don't know that there's good research on why accounting school expectations are so low relative to law schools in this regard. I can think of possible reasons off the top of my head.

  1. Law schools entail an equivalent of three years of post-graduate full time study preparing for the bar examination. Students sometimes earn masters of accounting degrees with only two or three semesters of graduate study.


  2. CPA exams have fewer prerequisites for sitting for the exam. Law students must take a law school curriculum at a law school to sit for the bar exam. Students that take the limited number of prerequisites to sit for the CPA examination don't even have to earn a masters of accounting degree. They can get an MBA or nursing degree. They only have to have 150 hours of college credit, some of which have to be prerequisites required by a State Board of Accountancy. CPA exam takes don't even have to earn a masters degree or even take an entrance examination for a masters program such as the GMAT or GRE examinations.


  3. I like to think the CPA examination is a tougher examination, but lawyers may beg to differ. I'm told that the CFA exam is tougher than the CPA examination or bar examination. But "toughness" is a lot like beauty --- it's in the eyes of the beholder.

The bottom line is that certification examination success depends upon a great deal on the years of preparation required. Perhaps a 98% passage rate to become board certified in brain surgery sounds impressive (easy?), but after all the years of medical school blood, sweat, and tears most candidates to become brain surgeons could write the certification examinations.

There also is a difference in learning aptitudes.
 In the tower student housing apartments at Stanford University years ago my good friend from France got a PhD in physics in record time. However, he had a learning block for Russian when we were taking the same course together as part of the language requirement (I'm not sure why he had to take a language beyond French and English). I tutored him and discovered that he really had a learning block for Russian. He had to take the course twice. I like to think I was brilliant, but in fact I had over two years of Russian before going to graduate school. This was because in my first two years of college I aspired to become an Admiral on a full Navy scholarship during the Cold War. I was a midshipman on a battleship during the summers when we played ocean hide and seek an tag with Russian submarines.

Interesting News from the 5:38 Blog on March 29, 2017

$4.5 million

A massive gold coin was stolen from the Bode Museum in Germany on Monday. The “Big Maple Leaf” has a face value of 1 million Canadian dollars ($750,000), but the gold it’s made of is worth about $4.5 million. Based on weight alone — this thing is 221 pounds of nearly pure gold — the theft is being investigated as a multi-person job. [ABC News]

45 million

Number of British one-pound coins that are suspected to be fake. The Royal Mint is rolling out 1.5 billion new coins with a whole suite of security features to cut back on counterfeiting. The new coins enter circulation today. [Bloomberg]

"The Academy’s Assault on Intellectual Diversity," by Robert Boyers, Chronicle of Higher Education's Chronicle Review, March 19, 2017 ---

It is tempting to describe the battles convulsing American campuses with epithets like "the politics of hysteria." More than a bit of hysteria was unleashed at Middlebury College this month, when protesters prevented Charles Murray from delivering a scheduled lecture. In spite of eloquent rebukes delivered by the college president and several prominent faculty members, some on the Middlebury campus defended the protest by citing the poisonous views expressed by Murray in his ugly and notorious book, The Bell Curve. Though it’s a violent instance of so-called free-speech controversies lately ignited on the nation’s campuses, the Middlebury incident doesn’t begin to reveal the depth or virulence of the opposition to robust discussion within the American professoriate, where many self-described liberals continue to believe that they remain committed to "difference" and debate, even as they countenance a full-scale assault on diversity of outlook and opinion.

Confront contemporary left-liberal academics — I continue to regard myself as a member of that deeply troubled cohort — with a familiar passage from John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty, and they will be moved at once to proclaim that Mill espouses what virtually all of us have long taken for granted. Of course we understand that "the tyranny of the majority" must be guarded against — even when it is our majority. Of course we understand that "the peculiar evil of silencing"— or attempting to silence — "the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing … posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: If wrong, they lose … the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error."

What can be more obvious than that? Of course we understand that there is danger in abiding uncritically with the views of one’s own "party" or "sect" or "class." Who among us doesn’t know that even ostensibly enlightened views cannot entitle us to think of those views, or of those who hold them, as "infallible"?

And yet a good many liberal academics are not actually invested in the posture to which their avowals ostensibly commit them. Mill noted among his own contemporaries, more than 150 years ago, what is very much in evidence in our own culture: that certain opinions have come to seem so important "to society" that their usefulness cannot be legitimately challenged. Thus a great many contemporary liberals subscribe to the belief — however loath they may be to acknowledge it — that certain ideas are "heretical" or "divisive" and that those who dare to articulate them must be, in one way or another, cast out. The burning desire to paint a scarlet letter on the breast of those who fail to observe the officially sanctioned view of things has taken possession of many ostensibly liberal people in academe, which has tended more and more in recent years to resemble what the Yale English professor David Bromwich calls "a church held together by the hunt for heresies."

When Mill wrote of the threat to liberty of "thought and discussion," he was responding, at least in part, to Tocqueville’s idea that in modern societies the greatest dangers to liberty were social rather than legal or political. Both men believed that the pressures to conform, and the pleasures associated with conformity, were such that these societies would not find it necessary to burn heretics at the stake. Mill explained:

And thus is kept up a state of things very satisfactory to some minds, because, without the unpleasant process of fining or imprisoning anybody, it maintains all prevailing opinions outwardly undisturbed, while it does not absolutely interdict the exercise of reason by dissentients afflicted with the malady of thought. … But the price paid for this sort of intellectual pacification, is the sacrifice of the entire moral courage of the human mind. A state of things in which a large portion of the most active and inquiring intellects find it advisable to keep the genuine principles and grounds of their convictions within their own breasts.

Sad to say, however, the expectations nowadays enforced with increasing and punishing severity in the academy are the basis for something rather more alarming than the regime Mill described. While dissentient views are today not always "absolutely" interdicted, and we do not hear of persons who are imprisoned for espousing incorrect views, we do routinely observe that "active and inquiring intellects" are cast out of the community of the righteous by their colleagues and formally "investigated" by witch-hunting faculty committees and threatened with the loss of their jobs. One need only mention the widely debated eruptions at Oberlin College, or Northwestern University, or others, to note that this is by no means a phenomenon limited to a handful of institutions.

The fact that these eruptions have drawn wildly inaccurate and misleading coverage in the right-wing media should not distract us from the serious implications of the kinds of intolerance promoted by ostensibly liberal faculty. Such show-trial-like events are the leading edge of efforts to create the kind of total cultural environment the critic Lionel Trilling described as built upon "firm presuppositions, received ideas, and approved attitudes."

What does such a total cultural environment look like? In the university it looks like a place in which all constituencies have been mobilized for the same end, in which every activity is to be monitored to ensure that everyone is "on board." Do courses in all departments reflect the commitment of the institution to raise "awareness" about all of the approved hot-button topics? If not, something must be done. Are all incoming freshmen assigned a suitably pointed, heavily ideological summer-reading text that tells them what they should be primarily concerned about as they enter? Check. Does the college calendar feature carefully orchestrated consciousness-raising sessions led by "human resources" specialists trained to facilitate "dialogues" leading where everyone must agree they ought to lead? Check. Is every member of the community primed to invoke the customary terms — "privilege," "power," "hostile," "unsafe" — no matter how incidental or spurious they seem in a given context? Essential.


Though much of the regime instituted along these lines can seem kind and gentle in its pursuit of what many of us take to be a well-intentioned indoctrination, the impression that control and coercion are the name of the game is really hard to miss.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on political correctness ---

Philosophy Took Kit ---
Learn to think like a philosopher.

138 Short Animated Introductions to the World’s Greatest Ideas: Plato, Michel Foucault, Simone de Beauvoir & More ---

Econometrics:  Is it Time for a Journal of Insignificant Results ---

P-Value --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P-value

ASA = American Statistical Association
The ASA's statement on p-values: context, process, and purpose --- 

Learn to p-Hack Like the Pros! ---

"Lies, Damn Lies, and Financial Statistics," by Peter Coy, Bloomberg, April 10, 2017 ---

Early in January in a Chicago hotel, Campbell Harvey gave a rip-Harvey’s term for torturing the data until it confesses is “p-hacking,” a reference to the p-value, a measure of statistical significance. P-hacking is also known as overfitting, data-mining—or data-snooping, the coinage of Andrew Lo, director of MIT’s Laboratory of Financial Engineering. Says Lo: “The more you search over the past, the more likely it is you are going to find exotic patterns that you happen to like or focus on. Those patterns are least likely to repeat.”snorting presidential address to the American Finance Association, the world’s leading society for research on financial economics. To get published in journals, he said, there’s a powerful temptation to torture the data until it confesses—that is, to conduct round after round of tests in search of a finding that can be claimed to be statistically significant. Said Harvey, a professor at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business: “Unfortunately, our standard testing methods are often ill-equipped to answer the questions that we pose.” He exhorted the group: “We are not salespeople. We are scientists!”

The problems Harvey identified in academia are as bad or worse in the investing world. Mass-market products such as exchange-traded funds are being concocted using the same flawed statistical techniques you find in scholarly journals. Most of the empirical research in finance is likely false, Harvey wrote in a paper with a Duke colleague, Yan Liu, in 2014. “This implies that half the financial products (promising outperformance) that companies are selling to clients are false.”

. . .

In the wrong hands, though, backtesting can go horribly wrong. It once found that the best predictor of the S&P 500, out of all the series in a batch of United Nations data, was butter production in Bangladesh. The nerd webcomic xkcd by Randall Munroe captures the ethos perfectly: It features a woman claiming jelly beans cause acne. When a statistical test shows no evidence of an effect, she revises her claim—it must depend on the flavor of jelly bean. So the statistician tests 20 flavors. Nineteen show nothing. By chance there’s a high correlation between jelly bean consumption and acne breakouts for one flavor. The final panel of the cartoon is the front page of a newspaper: “Green Jelly Beans Linked to Acne! 95% Confidence. Only 5% Chance of Coincidence!”

It’s worse for financial data because researchers have more knobs to twist in search of a prized “anomaly”—a subtle pattern in the data that looks like it could be a moneymaker. They can vary the period, the set of securities under consideration, or even the statistical method. Negative findings go in a file drawer; positive ones get submitted to a journal (tenure!) or made into an ETF whose performance we rely on for retirement. Testing out-of-sample data to keep yourself honest helps, but it doesn’t cure the problem. With enough tests, eventually by chance even your safety check will show the effect you want.

Continued in article

GELMAN: Some Natural Solutions to the p-Value Communication Problem—And Why They Won’t Work ---

NOTE: This is a repost of a blog that Andrew Gelman wrote for the blogsite Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science].
Blake McShane and David Gal recently wrote two articles (“Blinding us to the obvious? The effect of statistical training on the evaluation of evidence” and “Statistical significance and the dichotomization of evidence”) on the misunderstandings of p-values that are common even among supposed experts in statistics and applied social research.
The key misconception has nothing to do with tail-area probabilities or likelihoods or anything technical at all, but rather with the use of significance testing to finesse real uncertainty.
As John Carlin and I write in our discussion of McShane and Gal’s second paper (to appear in the Journal of the American Statistical Association):
Even authors of published articles in a top statistics journal are often confused about the meaning of p-values, especially by treating 0.05, or the range 0.05–0.15, as the location of a threshold. The underlying problem seems to be deterministic thinking. To put it another way, applied researchers and also statisticians are in the habit of demanding more certainty than their data can legitimately supply. The problem is not just that 0.05 is an arbitrary convention; rather, even a seemingly wide range of p-values such as 0.01–0.10 cannot serve to classify evidence in the desired way.
In our article, John and I discuss some natural solutions that won’t, on their own, work:
– Listen to the statisticians, or clarity in exposition
– Confidence intervals instead of hypothesis tests
– Bayesian interpretation of one-sided p-values
– Focusing on “practical significance” instead of “statistical significance”
– Bayes factors
You can read our article for the reasons why we think the above proposed solutions won’t work.
From our summary:
We recommend saying No to binary conclusions . . . resist giving clean answers when that is not warranted by the data. . . . It will be difficult to resolve the many problems with p-values and “statistical significance” without addressing the mistaken goal of certainty which such methods have been used to pursue.
P.S. Along similar lines, Stephen Jenkins sends along the similarly-themed article, “‘Sing Me a Song with Social Significance’: The (Mis)Use of Statistical Significance Testing in European Sociological Research,” by Fabrizio Bernardi, Lela Chakhaia, and Liliya Leopold.
Andrew Gelman is a professor of statistics and political science and director of the Applied Statistics Center at Columbia University. He blogs at Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.


Bayes Factors Versus P-Values ---

In a recent article in PLOS One, Don van Ravenzwaaij and John Ioannidis argue that Bayes factors should be preferred to significance testing (p-values) when assessing the effectiveness of new drugs.  At his blogsite The 20% Statistician, Daniel Lakens argues that Bayes factors suffer from the same problems as p-values. Namely, the combination of small effect sizes and sample sizes leads to inconclusive conclusions no matter whether one uses p-values or Bayes factors.  The real challenge facing decision-making from statistical studies comes from publication bias and underpowered studies.  Both significance testing and Bayes factors are relatively powerless (pun intended) to overcome these more fundamental problems. To read more, click here.


The ground is shaking beneath the accountics science foundations upon which all accounting doctoral programs and the prestigious accounting research journals are built. My guess is, however, that the accountics scientists are sleeping through the tremors or feigning sleep because, if they admit to waking up, their nightmares will become real! 
"A Scrapbook on What's Wrong with the Past, Present and Future of Accountics Science"
 by Bob Jensen

Misleading Statistical Significance Reporting
Statisticians Found One Thing They Can Agree On: It’s Time To Stop Misusing P-Values --- 

How many statisticians does it take to ensure at least a 50 percent chance of a disagreement about p-values? According to a tongue-in-cheek assessment by statistician George Cobb of Mount Holyoke College, the answer is two … or one. So it’s no surprise that when the American Statistical Association gathered 26 experts to develop a consensus statement on statistical significance and p-values, the discussion quickly became heated.

It may sound crazy to get indignant over a scientific term that few lay people have even heard of, but the consequences matter. The misuse of the p-value can drive bad science (there was no disagreement over that), and the consensus project was spurred by a growing worry that in some scientific fields, p-values have become a litmus test for deciding which studies are worthy of publication. As a result, research that produces p-values that surpass an arbitrary threshold are more likely to be published, while studies with greater or equal scientific importance may remain in the file drawer, unseen by the scientific community.

The results can be devastating, said Donald Berry, a biostatistician at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. “Patients with serious diseases have been harmed,” he wrote in a commentary published today. “Researchers have chased wild geese, finding too often that statistically significant conclusions could not be reproduced.” Faulty statistical conclusions, he added, have real economic consequences.

“The p-value was never intended to be a substitute for scientific reasoning,” the ASA’s executive director, Ron Wasserstein, said in a press release. On that point, the consensus committee members agreed, but statisticians have deep philosophical differences1 about the proper way to approach inference and statistics, and “this was taken as a battleground for those different views,” said Steven Goodman, co-director of the Meta-Research Innovation Center at Stanford. Much of the dispute centered around technical arguments over frequentist versus Bayesian methods and possible alternatives or supplements to p-values. “There were huge differences, including profoundly different views about the core problems and practices in need of reform,” Goodman said. “People were apoplectic over it.”

The group debated and discussed the issues for more than a year before finally producing a statement they could all sign. They released that consensus statement on Monday, along with 20 additional commentaries from members of the committee. The ASA statement is intended to address the misuse of p-values and promote a better understanding of them among researchers and science writers, and it marks the first time the association has taken an official position on a matter of statistical practice. The statement outlines some fundamental principles regarding p-values.

Among the committee’s tasks: Selecting a definition of the p-value that nonstatisticians could understand. They eventually settled on this: “Informally, a p-value is the probability under a specified statistical model that a statistical summary of the data (for example, the sample mean difference between two compared groups) would be equal to or more extreme than its observed value.” That definition is about as clear as mud (I stand by my conclusion that even scientists can’t easily explain p-values), but the rest of the statement and the ideas it presents are far more accessible.

One of the most important messages is that the p-value cannot tell you if your hypothesis is correct. Instead, it’s the probability of your data given your hypothesis. That sounds tantalizingly similar to “the probability of your hypothesis given your data,” but they’re not the same thing, said Stephen Senn, a biostatistician at the Luxembourg Institute of Health. To understand why, consider this example. “Is the pope Catholic? The answer is yes,” said Senn. “Is a Catholic the pope? The answer is probably not. If you change the order, the statement doesn’t survive.”

A common misconception among nonstatisticians is that p-values can tell you the probability that a result occurred by chance. This interpretation is dead wrong, but you see it again and again and againand again. The p-value only tells you something about the probability of seeing your results given a particular hypothetical explanation — it cannot tell you the probability that the results are true or whether they’re due to random chance. The ASA statement’s Principle No. 2: “P-values do not measure the probability that the studied hypothesis is true, or the probability that the data were produced by random chance alone.”

Nor can a p-value tell you the size of an effect, the strength of the evidence or the importance of a result. Yet despite all these limitations, p-values are often used as a way to separate true findings from spurious ones, and that creates perverse incentives. When the goal shifts from seeking the truth to obtaining a p-value that clears an arbitrary threshold (0.05 or less is considered “statistically significant” in many fields), researchers tend to fish around in their data and keep trying different analyses until they find something with the right p-value, as you can see for yourself in a p-hacking tool we built last year.

Continued in article

Significance Testing: We Can Do Better
Abacas, June 13, 2016
This is not a free article

Thomas R. Dyckman Professor Emeritus Cornell University


This paper advocates abandoning null hypothesis statistical tests (NHST) in favor of reporting confidence intervals. The case against NHST, which has been made repeatedly in multiple disciplines and is growing in awareness and acceptance, is introduced and discussed. Accounting as an empirical research discipline appears to be the last of research communities to face up to the inherent problems of significance test use and abuse. The paper encourages adoption of a meta-analysis approach which allows for the inclusion of replication studies in the assessment of evidence. This approach requires abandoning the typical NHST process and its reliance on p-values. However, given that NHST has deep roots and wide “social acceptance” in the empirical testing community, modifications to NHST are suggested so as to partly counter the weakness of this statistical testing method.

Extended Quotation
. . . 
2. Why The Frequentist Approach (NHSTs) Should be Abandoned in Favor of a Bayesian Approach

Frequentist Approach: 
The frequentist NHST relies on rejecting a null hypothesis of no effect or relationship based on the probability, or “p-level”, of observing a specific sample result X equal to or more extreme than the actual observation X₀, conditional on the null hypothesis H₀ being true. In symbols, this calculation yields a p-level = Pr(X≥X₀|H₀), where ≥ signifies “as or more discrepant with H₀ than X₀”. The origin of the approach is generally credited to Karl Pearson (1900), who introduced it in his χ²-test (Pearson actually called it the P, χ²-test). However, it was Sir Ronald Fisher who is credited with naming and popularizing statistical significance testing and p-values as promulgated in the many editions of his classic books Statistical Methods for Research Workers and The Design of Experiments. See Spielman (1974), Seidenfeld (1979), Johnstone et al. (1986), Barnett (1999), Berger (2003) and Howson and Urbach (2006) on the ideas and development of modern hypothesis tests (NHST).

The Bayesian Approach: 
Probabilities, under the Bayesian approach, rely on informed beliefs rather than physical quantities. They represent informed reasoned guesses. In the Bayesian approach, the objective is the posterior (post sample) belief concerning where a parameter, β in our case, is possibly located. Bayes’ theorem allows us to use the sample data to update our prior beliefs about the value of the parameter of interest. The revised (posterior) distribution represents the new belief based on the prior and the statistical method (the model) applied, and calculated using Bayes theorem. Prior beliefs play an important role in the Bayesian process. In fact, no data can be interpreted without prior beliefs (“data cannot speak for themselves”).

Bayesians emphasize the unavoidably subjective nature of the research process. The decision to select a models and specific prior or family of priors is necessarily subjective, and the sample data are seldom obtained objectively (Basturk et al., 2014). Indeed, data quality has become a major problem with the advent of “big data” and with the recognition that the rewards for publication tend to induce gamesmanship and even fraud in the data selected for the study.

When the investigator experiences difficulty and uncertainty in specifying a specific prior distribution, the use of diffuse or “uninformative” prior is typically adopted. The idea is to impose no strong prior belief on the analysis and hence allow the data to have a bigger part in the final conclusions. Ultimately, enough data will “swamp” any prior distribution, but in reality, where systems are not stationary and no models is known to be “true”, there is always subjectivity and room for revision in Bayesian posterior beliefs.

The Bayesian viewpoint is that this is a fact of research life and needs to be faced and treated formally in the analysis. Objectivity is not possible, so there is no gain from pretending that it is. Formal Bayesian methods for coping with subjectivity are easy to understand. For example, one approach is to ask how robust the posterior distribution of belief about β is to different possible prior distributions. If we can say that we come to essentially the same qualitative belief over all feasible models and prior distributions, or across the different priors that different people hold, then that is perhaps the most objective that a statistical conclusion can claim.

Continued in article

Academic psychology and medical testing are both dogged by unreliability. The reason is clear: we got probability wrong --- 

. . .

For one, it’s of little use to say that your observations would be rare if there were no real difference between the pills (which is what the p-value tells you), unless you can say whether or not the observations would also be rare when there is a true difference between the pills. Which brings us back to induction.

The problem of induction was solved, in principle, by the Reverend Thomas Bayes in the middle of the 18th century. He showed how to convert the probability of the observations given a hypothesis (the deductive problem) to what we actually want, the probability that the hypothesis is true given some observations (the inductive problem). But how to use his famous theorem in practice has been the subject of heated debate ever since.

Take the proposition that the Earth goes round the Sun. It either does or it doesn’t, so it’s hard to see how we could pick a probability for this statement. Furthermore, the Bayesian conversion involves assigning a value to the probability that your hypothesis is right before any observations have been made (the ‘prior probability’). Bayes’s theorem allows that prior probability to be converted to what we want, the probability that the hypothesis is true given some relevant observations, which is known as the ‘posterior probability’.

These intangible probabilities persuaded Fisher that Bayes’s approach wasn’t feasible. Instead, he proposed the wholly deductive process of null hypothesis significance testing. The realisation that this method, as it is commonly used, gives alarmingly large numbers of false positive results has spurred several recent attempts to bridge the gap.

There is one uncontroversial application of Bayes’s theorem: diagnostic screening, the tests that doctors give healthy people to detect warning signs of disease. They’re a good way to understand the perils of the deductive approach.

In theory, picking up on the early signs of illness is obviously good. But in practice there are usually so many false positive diagnoses that it just doesn’t work very well. Take dementia. Roughly 1 per cent of the population suffer from mild cognitive impairment, which might, but doesn’t always, lead to dementia. Suppose that the test is quite a good one, in the sense that 95 per cent of the time it gives the right (negative) answer for people who are free of the condition. That means that 5 per cent of the people who don’t have cognitive impairment will test, falsely, as positive. That doesn’t sound bad. It’s directly analogous to tests of significance which will give 5 per cent of false positives when there is no real effect, if we use a p-value of less than 5 per cent to mean ‘statistically significant’.

But in fact the screening test is not good – it’s actually appallingly bad, because 86 per cent, not 5 per cent, of all positive tests are false positives. So only 14 per cent of positive tests are correct. This happens because most people don’t have the condition, and so the false positives from these people (5 per cent of 99 per cent of the people), outweigh the number of true positives that arise from the much smaller number of people who have the condition (80 per cent of 1 per cent of the people, if we assume 80 per cent of people with the disease are detected successfully). There’s a YouTube video of my attempt to explain this principle, or you can read my recent paper on the subject.

Notice, though, that it’s possible to calculate the disastrous false-positive rate for screening tests only because we have estimates for the prevalence of the condition in the whole population being tested. This is the prior probability that we need to use Bayes’s theorem. If we return to the problem of tests of significance, it’s not so easy. The analogue of the prevalence of disease in the population becomes, in the case of significance tests, the probability that there is a real difference between the pills before the experiment is done – the prior probability that there’s a real effect. And it’s usually impossible to make a good guess at the value of this figure.

An example should make the idea more concrete. Imagine testing 1,000 different drugs, one at a time, to sort out which works and which doesn’t. You’d be lucky if 10 per cent of them were effective, so let’s proceed by assuming a prevalence or prior probability of 10 per cent. Say we observe a ‘just significant’ result, for example, a P = 0.047 in a single test, and declare that this is evidence that we have made a discovery. That claim will be wrong, not in 5 per cent of cases, as is commonly believed, but in 76 per cent of cases. That is disastrously high. Just as in screening tests, the reason for this large number of mistakes is that the number of false positives in the tests where there is no real effect outweighs the number of true positives that arise from the cases in which there is a real effect.

In general, though, we don’t know the real prevalence of true effects. So, although we can calculate the p-value, we can’t calculate the number of false positives. But what we can do is give a minimum value for the false positive rate. To do this, we need only assume that it’s not legitimate to say, before the observations are made, that the odds that an effect is real are any higher than 50:50. To do so would be to assume you’re more likely than not to be right before the experiment even begins.

If we repeat the drug calculations using a prevalence of 50 per cent rather than 10 per cent, we get a false positive rate of 26 per cent, still much bigger than 5 per cent. Any lower prevalence will result in an even higher false positive rate.

The upshot is that, if a scientist observes a ‘just significant’ result in a single test, say P = 0.047, and declares that she’s made a discovery, that claim will be wrong at least 26 per cent of the time, and probably more. No wonder then that there are problems with reproducibility in areas of science that rely on tests of significance.


Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Especially note the many replies to this article

. . .

David Colquhoun
I think that it’s quite hard to find a really good practical guide to Bayesian analysis. By really good, I mean on that is critical about priors and explains exactly what assumptions are being made. I fear that one reason for this is that Bayesians often seem to have an evangelical tendency that leads to them brushing the assumptions under the carpet. I agree that Alexander Etz is a good place to start. but I do wonder how much it will help when your faced with a particular set of observations to analyze

Henning Strandin --- 
Thank you for a good and useful article on the pitfalls of ignoring the baseline. I have a couple of comments. 
Bayes didn’t resolve the problem of induction, even in principle. The problem of induction is the problem of knowing that the observations you have made are relevant to some set of (perhaps as-yet) unobserved events. In his Essay on Probabilities, Laplace illustrated the problem in the same paragraph in which he suggests  . . .

Karl Young
Nice article; as a Bayesian who was forced to quote p values in a couple of medical physics papers for which the journal would have nothing else, I appreciate the points made here. But even as a Bayesian one has to acknowledge that there are a number of open problems besides just how to estimate priors. E.g. what one really wants to know is given some observations, how one’s hypothesis fares against as complete a list of alternative hypothesis as can be mustered. Even assuming that one could come up with such a list, calculating the probability that one’s hypothesis best fits the observations in that case requires calculation of a quantity called the evidence that is generally extremely difficult (the reason that the diagnostic examples mentioned in the piece lead to reasonable calculations is that calculating the evidence for the set of proposed hypotheses, that either someone in the population has a disease or doesn’t, is straightforward). So while I think Bayes is the philosophically most coherent approach to analyzing data (doesn’t solve the problem of induction but tries to at least manage it) there are still a number of issues preventing it

Comments Continued at 

"Drawing Inferences From Very Large Data-Sets,"   by David Giles, Econometrics Beat:  Dave Giles� Blog, University of Victoria, April 26, 2013 --- 

. . .

Granger (1998; 2003has reminded us that if the sample size is sufficiently large, then it's virtually impossible not to reject almost any hypothesis. So, if the sample is very large and the p-values associated with the estimated coefficients in a regression model are of the order of, say, 0.10 or even 0.05, then this really bad news. Much, much, smaller p-values are needed before we get all excited about 'statistically significant' results when the sample size is in the thousands, or even bigger. So, the p-values reported above are mostly pretty marginal, as far as significance is concerned. When you work out the p-values for the other 6 models I mentioned, they range from  to 0.005 to 0.460. I've been generous in the models I selected.

Here's another set of  results taken from a second, really nice, paper by
 Ciecieriski et al. (2011) in the same issue of Health Economics:

Continued in article

"Not Even Scientists Can Easily Explain P-values," by Christie Aschwanden, Nate Silver's 5:38 Blog, November 30, 2015 --- 

P-values have taken quite a beating lately. These widely used and commonly misapplied statistics have been blamed for giving a veneer of legitimacy to dodgy study results, encouraging bad research practices and promotingfalse-positive study results.

But after writing about p-values again and again, and recently issuing a correction on a nearly year-old story over some erroneous information regarding a study’s p-value (which I’d taken from the scientists themselves and their report), I’ve come to think that the most fundamental problem with p-values is that no one can really say what they are.

Last week, I attended the inaugural METRICS conference at Stanford, which brought together some of the world’s leading experts on meta-science, or the study of studies. I figured that if anyone could explain p-values in plain English, these folks could. I was wrong.

Continued in article

More on statistical mistakes
Bob Jensen's threads on Common Accountics Science and Econometric Science Statistical Mistakes --- 


The fall from grace of Accountics Science Sacred Cows --- P-Values
Beginning in the 1960s. academic accounting research commenced to rely mostly on the general linear (regression) model applied to purchased databases like CRSP, Compustat, AuditAnalitics, etc. Elite academic  journals like TAR, JAR, and JAE ceased accepting any submissions that did not have equations. Either the equations were analytical based upon unrealistic economic assumptions or empirical based upon dubious assumptions of efficient markets and the unreliable Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM). Down deep researchers knew correlation was not causation but results usually ignored this in the conclusions of the  GLM model applications. Errors in the purchased databases were overlooked by journal editors and referees. The accounting profession virtually lost interest in the tenure game being played by academic accounting (accountics) researchers --- 
Keep scrolling down this module for details.

Is accounting research stuck in a rut of repetitiveness and irrelevancy?

"Accounting Craftspeople versus Accounting Seers: Exploring the Relevance and Innovation Gaps in Academic Accounting Research," by William E. McCarthy, Accounting Horizons, December 2012, Vol. 26, No. 4, pp. 833-843 --- 

Is accounting research stuck in a rut of repetitiveness and irrelevancy? 
(Professor McCarthy) would answer yes, and I would even predict that both its gap in relevancy and its gap in innovation are going to continue to get worse if the people and the attitudes that govern inquiry in the American academy remain the same. From my perspective in accounting information systems, mainstream accounting research topics have changed very little in 30 years, except for the fact that their scope now seems much more narrow and crowded. More and more people seem to be studying the same topics in financial reporting and managerial control in the same ways, over and over and over. My suggestions to get out of this rut are simple. First, the profession should allow itself to think a little bit normatively, so we can actually target practice improvement as a real goal. And second, we need to allow new scholars a wider berth in research topics and methods, so we can actually give the kind of creativity and innovation that occurs naturally with young people a chance to blossom.

"The new astrology:  By fetishising mathematical models, economists turned economics into a highly paid pseudoscience," by Alan Jay Levinovitz, AEON, May 2016 --- 

Since the 2008 financial crisis, colleges and universities have faced increased pressure to identify essential disciplines, and cut the rest. In 2009, Washington State University announced it would eliminate the department of theatre and dance, the department of community and rural sociology, and the German major – the same year that the University of Louisiana at Lafayette ended its philosophy major. In 2012, Emory University in Atlanta did away with the visual arts department and its journalism programme. The cutbacks aren’t restricted to the humanities: in 2011, the state of Texas announced it would eliminate nearly half of its public undergraduate physics programmes. Even when there’s no downsizing, faculty salaries have been frozen and departmental budgets have shrunk.

But despite the funding crunch, it’s a bull market for academic economists. According to a 2015 sociological study in the Journal of Economic Perspectives, the median salary of economics teachers in 2012 increased to $103,000 – nearly $30,000 more than sociologists. For the top 10 per cent of economists, that figure jumps to $160,000, higher than the next most lucrative academic discipline – engineering. These figures, stress the study’s authors, do not include other sources of income such as consulting fees for banks and hedge funds, which, as many learned from the documentary Inside Job (2010), are often substantial. (Ben Bernanke, a former academic economist and ex-chairman of the Federal Reserve, earns $200,000-$400,000 for a single appearance.)

Unlike engineers and chemists, economists cannot point to concrete objects – cell phones, plastic – to justify the high valuation of their discipline. Nor, in the case of financial economics and macroeconomics, can they point to the predictive power of their theories. Hedge funds employ cutting-edge economists who command princely fees, but routinely underperform index funds. Eight years ago, Warren Buffet made a 10-year, $1 million bet that a portfolio of hedge funds would lose to the S&P 500, and it looks like he’s going to collect. In 1998, a fund that boasted two Nobel Laureates as advisors collapsed, nearly causing a global financial crisis.

The failure of the field to predict the 2008 crisis has also been well-documented. In 2003, for example, only five years before the Great Recession, the Nobel Laureate Robert E Lucas Jr told the American Economic Association that ‘macroeconomics […] has succeeded: its central problem of depression prevention has been solved’. Short-term predictions fair little better – in April 2014, for instance, a survey of 67 economists yielded 100 per cent consensus: interest rates would rise over the next six months. Instead, they fell. A lot.

Nonetheless, surveys indicate that economists see their discipline as ‘the most scientific of the social sciences’. What is the basis of this collective faith, shared by universities, presidents and billionaires? Shouldn’t successful and powerful people be the first to spot the exaggerated worth of a discipline, and the least likely to pay for it?

In the hypothetical worlds of rational markets, where much of economic theory is set, perhaps. But real-world history tells a different story, of mathematical models masquerading as science and a public eager to buy them, mistaking elegant equations for empirical accuracy.

Real Science versus Pseudo Science --- 

Jensen Comment
Academic accounting (accountics) scientists took economic astrology a step further when their leading journals stopped encouraging and publishing commentaries and replications of published articles --- 
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"

Times are changing in social science research (including economics) where misleading p-values are no longer the Holy Grail. Change among accountics scientist will lag behind change in social science research but some day leading academic accounting research journals may publish articles without equations and/or articles of interest to some accounting practitioner somewhere in the world --- 
 See below


Academic accounting researchers sheilded themselves from validity challenges by refusing to publish commentaries and refusing to accept replication studies for publication --- 


Stanford University 2017 Update:  Fixing Big Data’s Blind Spot Susan Athey wants to help machine-learning applications look beyond correlation and into root causes --- 

Accountics Science:  What Went Wrong?
This is a big document that loads slowly

From the Scout Report on April 1, 2017

Jotterpad --- https://2appstudio.com/jotterpad 

Many writers are on the hunt for a writing tool that will help spur creativity. Luckily, Jotterpad, a text editor for Android devices, was designed with the creative writer in mind. Like other options out there, this writing tool aims to reduce distraction and promote writing through a crisp, clean typing interface. What sets it apart, are the details. Typeface options have been selected with ease of use in mind; fonts are easy on the eye and readable on multiple devices. Tech-savvy users may even import custom typeface, should the desire arise. Additionally, Jotterpad includes a Night mode to facilitate working in the evenings. Other highlights include a built-in dictionary, thesaurus, and rhyming dictionary for those poets among us. Finished products may be exported in PDF, RTF, HTML, DOCX, or plain text file formats.

 I Can't Wake Up --- http://kogcreations.com 

Do you have trouble getting up each morning? Are you guilty of hitting snooze multiple times before starting your day? If so, this application may be for you. I Can't wake up, an app for Android and iOS devices, functions as an alarm clock specifically for those who struggle to get out of bed. This particular alarm clock requires users to perform a basic task, such as a math problem, before they are able to hit snooze or turn off their alarm. In fact, the alarm actually gets louder the longer users procrastinate on doing the task. The basic version of this application is free.

New Research Suggests that Access to Food Determines Lamprey Sex
Growth spurts may determine a lamprey's sex

Sex-shifting fish: Growth rate could determine sea lamprey sex

Sex of Fish Determined by Access to Food, Surprised Researchers Say

Parasitic fish offer evolutionary insights

USGS: Sea Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) FactSheet

Sex Determination: Why so Many Ways of Doing It?

From the Scout Report on April 14, 2017

Bear ---  http://www.bear-writer.com 

Bear is a note taking application for iOS devices that allows users to sort notes by categories and create to-do lists. This application will likely most appeal to iCloud users who want to quickly access notes across iOS devices. Bear allows users to organize notes through hashtags, or quickly reorganize to do lists with a "pin top" option. In addition, users can check off boxes on to-do lists and use a strikethrough feature to edit their thoughts. Users can also import notes from Evernote.

Loom (screen capture pictures and video) --- https://www.useloom.com 

Readers looking for a new screen recording tool may want to check out Loom, a free Google Chrome browser extension that allows users to capture what they see on their screen and easily share with others. Once downloaded, the tool requires a Google or Microsoft account to get started. Users then have the option to simply capture what is on the screen, or use microphone audio and webcam features for more detailed annotation. Saved videos may be shared with other users, downloaded, or posted to social media accounts. Loom is currently only available for Google Chrome, but may soon be available for other browsers.

Free Online Tutorials, Videos, Course Materials, and Learning Centers

Education Tutorials

Visionlearning (Science) --- http://www.visionlearning.com/en

How to Learn Math: For Students --- https://lagunita.stanford.edu/courses/Education/EDUC115-S/Spring2014/about

Seeing Theory (probability and statistics) --- http://students.brown.edu/seeing-theory

Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) --- https://vads.ac.uk

TeachMeAnatomy --- http://teachmeanatomy.info

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

Bob Jensen's bookmarks for multiple disciplines --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm

Bob Jensen's links to free courses and tutorials --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

Engineering, Science, and Medicine Tutorials

Visionlearning (Science) --- http://www.visionlearning.com/en

OVA: Treasures of the Earth: Gems --- http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/treasures-earth-gems.html

Kew: State of World Plants https://stateoftheworldsplants.com

TeachMeAnatomy --- http://teachmeanatomy.info

National Geographic Society: Gray Wolf Educator's Guide --- http://www.nationalgeographic.org/media/gray-wolf-educator-guide

The Wall of Birds --- https://academy.allaboutbirds.org/features/wallofbirds

David and Gladys Wright House (Frank Lloyd Wright) --- http://davidwrighthouse.org

Bob Jensen's threads on free online science, engineering, and medicine tutorials are at --http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm

Bob Jensen's links to free courses and tutorials --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

Social Science and Economics Tutorials

The Hastings Center (health ethics) --- http://www.thehastingscenter.org

Women, Minorities, and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering --- https://nsf.gov/statistics/2017/nsf17310/

Documenting Hate --- https://projects.propublica.org/graphics/hatecrimes

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

Bob Jensen's links to free courses and tutorials --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

Law and Legal Studies

Bob Jensen's threads on law and legal studies are at
Scroll down to Law

Math Tutorials

Dan Meyer's Popular  Math Blog:  1,000 Math Teachers Tell Me What They Think About Calculators in the Classroom ---

YouTube: Math Mornings at Yale --- https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLqHnHG5X2PXBVZsf_rvAwGnUgZ-mGdqCy

YouTube: Infinite Series (infinity) --- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs4aHmggTfFrpkPcWSaBN9g

How to Learn Math: For Students --- https://lagunita.stanford.edu/courses/Education/EDUC115-S/Spring2014/about

Seeing Theory (probability and statistics) --- http://students.brown.edu/seeing-theory

Fermat's Library http://fermatslibrary.com

Bob Jensen's threads on free online mathematics tutorials are at
Scroll down to Mathematics and Statistics

Bob Jensen's links to free courses and tutorials --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

History Tutorials

Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Ethics --- http://www.iep.utm.edu/ethics

Amazon's List of 100 Books to Read in Your Lifetime (not many ancient classics or free books in this listing)---

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Abhidharma (historical Buddah) --- http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/abhidharma/

Museum of Obsolete Media --- http://www.obsoletemedia.org

DPLA: A History of U.S. Libraries https://dp.la/exhibitions/exhibits/show/history-us-public-libraries

Center for the Future of Libraries --- http://www.ala.org/transforminglibraries/future

Future Library: 2014-2114 --- https://www.futurelibrary.no

Library 2.0 --- http://www.library20.com

Internet Archive Wayback Machine https://web-beta.archive.org

The Invisible Library --- http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/11/16/the-invisible-library

Library of Congress Online Catalog --- https://catalog.loc.gov

New York Public Library Visual Materials --- https://digitalcollections.nypl.org/collections/new-york-public-library-visual-materials

Little Free Library --- https://littlefreelibrary.org

Debates in the Digital Humanities --- http://dhdebates.gc.cuny.edu

Thinkers and Tinkers --- http://hernbergm.wixsite.com/maker-movement 

Bob Jensen's Philosophy Links --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm
Scroll down to "Philosophy"

Marginalia Review of Books --- http://marginalia.lareviewofbooks.org

David and Gladys Wright House (Frank Lloyd Wright) --- http://davidwrighthouse.org

Download 437 Issues of Soviet Photo Magazine, the Soviet Union’s Historic Photography Journal (1926-1991) ---

Umbra Search African American History --- https://www.umbrasearch.org

Home Front: California During WWII --- https://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/beta/exhibit/FQISpwnUy6rKKg

China Biographical Database Project --- http://projects.iq.harvard.edu/cbdb

Historic Threads: Three Centuries of Clothing (fashion) --- http://www.history.org/history/museums/clothingexhibit

Musee des Beaux-Artes: Collections (art works) --- http://mbarouen.fr/en/collections

Books As Medicine --- http://booksasmedicine.com

Bob Jensen's threads on history tutorials are at http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2.htm
Scroll down to History
Also see http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm  

Bob Jensen's links to free courses and tutorials --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

Language Tutorials

Learn 48 Languages Online for Free: Spanish, Chinese, English & More ---

Bob Jensen's links to language tutorials are at http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookbob2-Part2.htm#Languages

Music Tutorials

Bob Jensen's threads on free music tutorials are at
Scroll down to Music

Bob Jensen's threads on music performances ---

Writing Tutorials

University of Illinois: The Center for Writing Studies --- http://www.cws.illinois.edu

Dictionary of the Bood --- http://lisnews.org/the_dictionary_of_the_book

Meet the “Grammar Vigilante,” Hell-Bent on Fixing Grammatical Mistakes on England’s Storefront Signs ---

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

Bob Jensen's threads on medicine ---

CDC Blogs --- http://blogs.cdc.gov/

Shots: NPR Health News --- http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots

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

March 28, 2017

March 29, 2017

March 30, 2017

March 31, 2017

April 1, 2017

April 3, 2017

April 4, 2017

April 5, 2017

April 6, 2017

April 7, 2017

April 8m 2017

April 10, 2017

April 12, 2017

April 13, 2017

April 14, 2017

April 15, 2017



Is There An Awareness Behind Vegetative States?

Books As Medicine --- http://booksasmedicine.com

 The Hastings Center (health ethics) --- http://www.thehastingscenter.org

Lauren Marks:  What My Stroke Taught Me ---

. . .

We are rarely prepared for the next stages in our lives, and we lurch forward into positions we are not equipped for, without the expertise we might sorely need. With that in mind, perfection can never be the goal. But fluidity might be. And sometimes without exactly realizing it, in the process of doing what we are doing, we become the people who are capable of doing it.

Language was both my injury and the treatment of that injury, and in many ways, I have been writing my way back to fluency. I suspect I will continue to keep reaching out for language, even when it falls short. Speech, overt or covert, can be such a gift, but sometimes it is at its best when it isn’t being used at all.

How beautiful a word can be. Almost as beautiful as the silence that precedes it.


Mapping Alzheimers ---

Lyme disease is set to explode and we still don’t have a vaccine ---

University of California researchers are trialling a vaccine that could be a game-changer for anyone with acne ---

From a MIT Newsletter on April 8, 2017

Eat Your Veggies

We’ve long known that feeding the world poses problems. This excerpt from a 1965 article suggests a number of possible solutions—including a meal “adequate for all human needs” made from one-third processed oilseed meal and two-thirds cereal grain. (Subscribers can read the whole thing here.)


Corn That Clones Itself

Fortunately for our taste buds, thinking moved on in subsequent decades. In 2003, we investigated whether new kinds of crops that were genetically engineered to reproduce through cloning could feed the world’s poor.


Supercharged Photosynthesis

More recently, biologists have tried to boost the yield of individual plants. By tweaking the method through which crops create energy for themselves, researchers reckon, they could boost rice yields by as much as 50 percent.


Why We Will Need Genetically Modified Foods

Even so, the prospect of widespread GMO use has proved contentious. But with increasing demand for food, regular crops look unlikely to keep us all sated. We looked at the numbers to show that engineered crops will be vital in the future.


The Problem with Fake Meat

Then there’s the quest to engineer synthetic flesh. The dream is to build a tasty slab of protein that hasn’t been sliced from an animal—but despite huge advances in the field, there are still difficulties with making the perfect pretend patty.


Fun with Food

It’s worth remembering that food isn’t just fuel—it can be pleasurable, too. We recently took a look inside some of the world’s most cutting-edge food labs to find out how scientific gastronomy will put a little more joy on our plates.

How FDA Rules Made a $15 Drug Cost $400 ---

For many older medicines, government forces the original, name-brand version off the market (after its patent expires)

The theory is that generic drugs should be less expensive than the original. By the time a generic hits the market, the drug’s patent has expired, allowing competition from companies that didn’t spend millions of dollars to develop it. As more options become available, prices are supposed to drop. But because of quirks in America’s regulatory system, it doesn’t always work out this way.

In 2009 the Food and Drug Administration approved a new version of colchicine, which treats symptoms of gout. Prices rose from 25 cents to $6 per pill. Two years later, the agency approved a new hydroxyprogesterone, which helps prevent premature births. It went from $15 to $400 an injection. In 2014 the FDA approved a generic of the man-made hormone vasopressin. Prices jumped from $11 to $138 for an injection.

What explains the counterintuitive price increases? All these prescription drugs fall under a category known as DESI drugs, named for their inclusion in an FDA program called Drug Efficacy Study Implementation. These drugs came to market before 1962, when getting FDA approval for a drug required proving its safety but not its efficacy. Such drugs, manufactured under expired patents, are used by millions of Americans today.

But once the FDA approves a new-drug application for a DESI drug, the existing drug can be pulled from the market. The “new” drug is treated as a material advance because it underwent testing for safety and efficacy—even though the DESI version was proved safe and effective over decades of actual use. The developer of the new drug may also get a new period of market exclusivity that lasts three years.

This makes little sense. Market exclusivity should let pharmaceutical companies recoup their often enormous investments in genuinely new drugs. Giving monopoly protection for what is essentially a generic version of a DESI drug merely enriches sharp-dealing companies while injuring patients.

Another reason generics often face no competition was described by Scott Gottlieb, President Trump’s nominee for FDA commissioner, in these pages last year. He noted that a generic-drug application can cost as much as $15 million. This high upfront cost is part of why would-be manufacturers of generics often pass on the opportunity to compete against branded drugs with smaller markets. This has allowed many pharmaceutical companies to raise prices with impunity.

Overhauling the drug-approval process will take time. But there are already tools to help ensure reasonable prices for the estimated 17% of U.S. drugs that lack competition.

The Drug Quality and Security Act of 2013 was designed to ensure that companies can quickly respond to a drug shortage by allowing a new type of drug maker, called an “outsourcing facility,” to enter the market. It copies an FDA-approved product, regardless of exclusivity, provided that it manufactures the drug in an FDA-registered and -inspected facility using FDA-approved ingredients. American companies, including mine, have invested in such facilities.

Yet the potential of this legislation remains untapped. The FDA should clearly define “drug shortage” to include a lack of access due to abnormally high prices. With this simple change, FDA-registered outsourcing facilities could quickly bring sky-high prices for monopoly generics with expired patents back to earth.

At the same time, the Trump administration should authorize Medicare and Medicaid to pay for compounded drugs made in outsourcing facilities, which currently aren’t covered. Right now government policy forces Medicare to pay Turing Pharmaceuticals, the brainchild of the notorious “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli, $750 for a single Daraprim pill. Instead Medicare should be able to choose my company’s Daraprim alternative, priced at 99 cents a pill, which has been safely dispensed to thousands of patients nationwide.

Continued in article

A senator found Medicare blowing hundreds of millions on a loser drug — and no one even got a slap on the wrist ---


Humor for April 2017

Forwarded by Bob Blystone
The World According to Student Bloopers ---

Forwarded by Scott Bonacker
Tax Rackets --- https://www.flake.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/press-releases?ID=1102AA3C-75E7-4E77-8B3D-2DB5682A32A9

P.G. Wodehouse, Great American Humorist?

Granny's Magic Trick for Grandpa ---

Forwarded by Paula
YMOC Feel Good ---

One liners orwarded by Paula (some have been around for a while; some are new to me)

Just read that 4,153,237 people got married last year, not to cause any trouble but shouldn't that be an even number? 
Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation towards the local swimming pool. I gave him a glass of water.
I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather. Not screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.
If I had a dollar for every girl that found me unattractive, they would eventually find me attractive. 
I find it ironic that the colors red, white, and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.
When wearing a bikini, women reveal 90% of their body... men are so polite they only look at the covered parts.
A recent study has found that woman who carry a little extra weight, live longer than the men who mention it.
Relationships are a lot like algebra. Have you ever looked at your X and wondered Y? 
America is a country which produces citizens who will cross the ocean to fight for democracy but won't cross the street to vote.
You know that tingly little feeling you get when you like someone?  That's your common sense leaving your body. 
Did you know that dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish? 
My therapist says I have a preoccupation with vengeance. We'll see about that.
I think my neighbor is stalking me as she's been googling my name on her computer. I saw it through my telescope last night. 
Money talks ...but all mine ever says is good-bye. 
You're not fat, you're just... easier to see. 
If you think nobody cares whether you're alive, try missing a couple of payments.
I always wondered what the job application is like at Hooters. Do they just give you a bra and say, “Here, fill this out?” 
I can’t understand why women are okay that JC Penny has an older women’s clothing line named, “Sag Harbor.” 
My therapist said that my narcissism causes me to misread social situations. I’m pretty sure she was hitting on me. 
My 60 year kindergarten reunion is coming up soon and I’m worried about the 175 pounds I’ve gained since then.
Denny’s has a slogan, “If it’s your birthday, the meal is on us.” If you’re in Denny’s and it’s your birthday, your life sucks!
The pharmacist asked me my birth date again today. I’m pretty sure she’s going to get me something. 
On average, an American man will have sex two to three times a week. Whereas, a Japanese man will have sex only one or two times a year. This is very upsetting news to me. I had no idea I was Japanese.
 The location of your mailbox shows you how far away from your house you can be in a robe before you start looking like a mental patient. 
I think it's pretty cool how Chinese people made a language entirely out of tattoos. 
Money can’t buy happiness, but it keeps the kids in touch! 
The reason Mayberry was so peaceful and quiet was because nobody was married. Andy, Aunt Bea, Barney, Floyd, Howard, Goober, Gomer, Sam, Earnest T Bass, Helen, Thelma Lou, Clara and, of course, Opie were all single. The only married person was Otis, and he stayed drunk. 

On the first day of school, the children brought gifts for their teacher. The supermarket manager's daughter brought the teacher a basket of assorted fruit. The florist's son brought the teacher a bouquet of flowers. The candy-store owner's daughter gave the teacher a pretty box of candy. Then the liquor-store owner's son brought up a big, heavy box. The teacher lifted it up and noticed that it was leaking a little bit. She touched a drop of the liquid with her finger and tasted it."Is it wine?" she guessed. "No," the boy replied. She tasted another drop and asked, "Champagne?" "No," said the little boy, "It's a puppy."


Humor March 2017 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q1.htm#Humor0317.htm

Humor February 2017 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q1.htm#Humor0217.htm

Humor January 2017 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q1.htm#Humor0117.htm

Humor December 2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q4.htm#Humor1216.htm 

Humor November 2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q4.htm#Humor1116.htm 

Humor October 2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q4.htm#Humor1016.htm

Humor September 2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q3.htm#Humor0916.htm

Humor August  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q3.htm#Humor083116.htm

Humor July  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q3.htm#Humor0716.htm  

Humor June  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q2.htm#Humor063016.htm

Humor May  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q2.htm#Humor053116.htm

Humor April  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q2.htm#Humor043016.htm

Humor March  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q1.htm#Humor033116.htm

Humor February  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q1.htm#Humor022916.htm

Humor January  2016 --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book16q1.htm#Humor013116.htm


Tidbits Archives --- http://faculty.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://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Crossborder.htm
For-Profit Universities Operating in the Gray Zone of Fraud  (College, Inc.) --- http://faculty.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://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm 
Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates --- http://faculty.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://faculty.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://faculty.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://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/JensenBlogs.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

Some Accounting History Sites

Bob Jensen's Accounting History in a Nutshell and Links --- http://faculty.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://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/415wp/AmericanHistoryOfFraud.htm
Also see http://faculty.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