Tidbits on November 30, 2017
Bob Jensen at Trinity University

Wes Lavin's 2017 Autumn Foliage Part 1


Tidbits on November 30, 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/ ubl

Online Video, Slide Shows, and Audio

The Inn on Sunset Hill (just down from our cottage) ---

Video:  Net Neutrality Explained and Defended in a Doodle-Filled Video by Vi Hart: The Time to Save the Open Web is Now ---

More than a Million Pro-Repeal Net Neutrality Comments were Likely Faked ---

Video:  The main differences between Advil, Tylenol, Aleve, and Aspirin summed up ---

11 Beloved (Classic) Movies That Were Box Office Flops ---

THE SOCIAL VIDEO REPORT: Content, distribution, and monetization across Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, and Instagram -+--

Google Street View Lets You Walk in Jane Goodall’s Footsteps and Visit the Chimpanzees of Tanzania ---

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 

Watch Classical Music Come to Life in Artfully Animated Scores: Stravinsky, Debussy, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart & More ---

Watch Classical Music Get Perfectly Visualized as an Emotional Roller Coaster Ride ---

Stream All of Tom Wait’s Music in a 24 Hour Playlist: From 1973’s Closing Time to 2011’s Bad as Me ---

Listen to Rolling Stone‘s “500 Greatest Songs of All Time” in One Streamable Playlist ---

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

The Barnes Collection Online (art history) --- https://collection.barnesfoundation.org/

See the First Photograph of a Human Being: A Photo Taken by Louis Daguerre (1838) ---

Isabel de Giberne Sieveking: A Conventional Radical (gender studies and photography) ---

How a Korean Potter Found a “Beautiful Life” Through His Art: A Short, Life-Affirming Documentary Posted: 15 Nov 2017 04:00 AM PST ---

NASA released amazing close-up images of the giant new iceberg in Antarctica ---

Two Million Wondrous Nature Illustrations Put Online by The Biodiversity Heritage Library ---

8 photos of the Tu-160M2, the new long-range super bomber that Russia just unveiled ---

Terrifying 4,600ft Glass Walkway Opens In China, And Just Looking At The Pics Will Give You Vertigo ---

An Artist with Synesthesia Turns Jazz & Rock Classics Into Colorful Abstract Paintings ---

50 Amazing Photos Taken in 2017 ---

Incredible photos from the first Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade

Art Institute of Chicago: Children --- www.artic.edu/aic/collections/artwork/category/188

The Toronto Star: 125 years of Star Photography --- http://projects.thestar.com/125-years-of-star-photos/

A Photo Trip Along the Ancient Silk Road ---

Bob Jensen's threads on art history ---

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

A Digital Archive of 1,800+ Children’s Books from UCLA ---
Jensen Link
Bob Jensen's links to children's literature ---

AustLit: The Australian Literature Resource Language Arts --- www.austlit.edu.au

Lesbian Herstory Archive: Audio/Visual Collections --- http://herstories.prattinfoschool.nyc/omeka/

Restoration Printed Fiction: A Comprehensive and Searchable Database of Fiction Printed 1660-1700 --- www.faculty.english.ttu.edu/kvande/RPFsite/index.xml

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



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 November 30, 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

39 Things About Life I Wish I Had Known 10 Years Ago ---
Jensen Comment
This is mostly good advice with some recommendations that probably vary with age and circumstances. For example, the recommendation to buy a house definitely varies with circumstances. I usually recommend that teachers rent until tenure is achieved. I recommend buying a house in retirement if you're early on into retirement and in good health. My wife has a chronic spine ailment, and the other day I had temporary back pains. It dawned on me that in these mountains we could no longer keep up this property if my temporary setback was permanent. My back is fine now, but when the day comes that I can no longer get on my tractor it's the day to put up a for sale sign on our cottage.

Sometimes the dreams that drive you are not necessarily the dreams that should've driven you. When I was in college my dream was to have an acreage or even a ranch where I could look out over a lush pasture at my grazing horses. When I was on the faculty at Florida State University I could look out at my horses grazing in lush pasture. Then I realized that my children had no interest in riding and caring for horses. I quickly grew bored with riding alone. paying vet bills, and having to chore my horses daily. Some of the days I fondly remember are the days I sold my last horse and the day I woke up without having a swimming pool to care for.

What I discovered in life is that leisure is mostly a bore. Think of how boring really is to sail a boat or play golf. It's probably more fun to build a sail boat than to sail it. The real thrill for me is seeking to learn new things and to be challenged about what I think I know. Retirement must have really been boring before the age of computers and the Internet.

My best advice is probably to be proud of your labor no matter what the labor entails.
For example, while Erika is recovering from surgery I take our laundry into a launder mat in Littleton. A tall young man there named Gail cheerfully weighs in my baskets of laundry. He genuinely takes pride in washing, folding, and packaging our cleaned clothes in sealing plastic. I admire him so much for the pride he takes in his fine work without ever seeming to have an unhappy day in his routine.

The Chronicle’s Best Ideas for Teaching, 2017 ---

As a Chronicle of Higher Education individual subscriber, you receive premium, unrestricted access to the entire Chronicle Focus collection. Curated by our newsroom, these booklets compile the most popular and relevant higher-education news to provide you with in-depth looks at topics affecting campuses today. The Chronicle Focus collection explores student alcohol abuse, racial tension on campuses, and other emerging trends that have a significant impact on higher education.


How One University Encourages Innovation in Teaching

The University of Georgia organizes faculty learning communities to help professors rethink the lecture.

The Personal Lecture

Universities are experimenting with ways to make big classes seem small.

5 Ways to Shake Up the Lecture

The flipped classroom and four other approaches have gained traction.

If Skills Are the New Canon, Are Colleges Teaching Them?

Students benefit from learning skills like critical thinking. But courses aren’t set up that way.

The Making of a Teaching Evangelist

How Eric Mazur came to realize that the traditional classroom lecture had to go.

How One Professor Is Trying to Paint a Richer Portrait of Effective Teaching

Philip B. Stark is leading an effort to rely less on student evaluations and more on other methods.

The Next Great Hope for Measuring Learning

Thirteen states are using a common tool to evaluate how well their students write, calculate, and think.

Small Changes in Teaching: The First 5 Minutes of Class

Here are four quick ways to shift students’ attention from life’s distractions to your course content.

Small Changes in Teaching: The Last 5 Minutes of Class

Don’t waste them trying to cram in eight more points or call out reminders.

What Should Graduates Know?

Instruction should give students skills that make them intellectually empowered and morally aware.

Cover illustration by James Yang for

The Chronicle

Jensen Comment
If you do not subscribe to the Chronicle of Higher Education your campus library may allow you to access article via their electronic subscription service.

Bob Jensen's Threads on Tools and Tricksof the Trade ---

Bob Jensen's Threads on Education Technologies ---

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

Wikibooks is a source of evolving free textbooks ---

For example, here's what's available and planned for accountancy ---

One of the Best Sources of Free Learning Videos in Various Disciplines is the Ever-Growing Khan Academy ---

For Example this is What's Available in Accountancy and Taxation ---



More than 100 colleges have set up channels on YouTube --- http://www.youtube.com/edu
Many universities offer over 100 videos, whereas Stanford offers a whopping 583
Search for words like “accounting”

For example, in the search box enter the word "accounting" to see accounting videos available to date.

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

Bob Jensen's World Library ---

Amazon Merchants Continue to Find Ways to Cheat ---

Jensen Comment
This is great material for an ethics course or seminar.

The Founder of the World Wide Web is Pessimistic About Its Future ---
Note that the WWW is not the same as the Internet that preceded it by two decades. However, Tim Berners-Lee's fears about the WWW extrapolate to the Internet in general. The Internet will not cease to exist but it will increasingly be used for dark purposes.
Bob Jensen's threads on the history of computing, the Internet, and the WWW ---

Best and Worst Economies of the World (Yeah Right!) ---

Jensen Comment
This ranking probably goes to far in leaving out size considerations. For example, is Finland really a "better" economy than China? Certainly not in my book. When it comes to worries about world dominance in economics Finland does not matter in the least compared to China. This issue is size. Finland has slightly over five million people and is a flea in terms of economic competition of the world. Being small has some advantages such as when it comes to funding a national health care system or in not having to fund a military fore of global significance. But when it comes to labor and other resources most of the "best" economies ranked at the above sites are fleas compared to China, India, Russia, etc. In terms of the future even the USA is probably too small relative to the looming giants of Brazil, Russia, India, and China --- the so-called BRICs ---
The main thing holding back the BRICs is their economic corruption, and some day they may begin to realize that corruption is the only thing standing between them and economic greatness.

U.S. New-Home Sales Unexpectedly Rise to Highest in a Decade ---


Single-family home sales rose 6.2% m/m to 685k annualized pace (est. 627k), the highest since Oct. 2007, a revised 645k rate

Purchases in the South increased for a third month, to the fastest pace in 10 years

Median sales price increased 3.3% y/y to $312,800

Supply of homes at current sales rate fell to 4.9 months, the smallest since July 2016, from 5.2 months; 282,000 new houses were on market at end of October

The Human Machine Reading List ---

Microsoft Word: Enable Word’s AutoRecovery tool ---

Time Magazine:  The 25 Best Inventions of 2017 ---

Ember Mug --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ember_Technologies
The electric heating mug on a on a recharging saucer that keeps liquids hot for about an hour. Amazon's $142 price seems high relative to the $90 price from Ember.com ---
Nevertheless I ordered one from Amazon due to both the ease of ordering and the ease of return. In the den I have mug heating plate, but it won't keep the coffee or tea as hot as Erika likes.

eSight is a wearable medical device designed to improve the functional vision of those living with low vision or legal blindness.---
Also see

Amazon reveals its 5 top-selling items as it steals half of all online sales on Black Friday ---

Time Magazine:  The Top 10 Gadgets of 2017 ---

Bob Jensen's threads on gadgets ---

Dayton, Vermont Offer 3+2 Programs: Undergraduate + Law Degree In 5 Years ---

Jensen Comment
In a related way Purdue now offers a three-year undergraduate degree that cuts about $9,000 off the cost of that degree plus savings on not having to pay room and board for a fourth year. One risk is student burnout from the workloads and intensity of these accelerated programs. Another problem is the loss of earnings and work experience. from having time to work for pay part-time during the school year and full-time during the summer.

Is Excel inferior (e.g. poor collaboration tools) or just too complicated (e.g., using functions)?
From the CFO's Morning Ledger on November 27, 2017

Good morning. In case you missed it, there was a great deal of debate over the table last week. Finance chiefs are turning away from Microsoft Corp.’s Excel in favor of more collaborative and cloud-based software, writes CFO Journal’s Tatyana Shumsky.

CFOs say the ubiquitous spreadsheet software that revolutionized accounting in the 1980s hasn’t kept up with the demands of today's finance departments.

The widely-read CFO Journal story elicited strong response from accountants, finance experts and technology gurus. While some said they’d be happy to get rid of the software, many others maintained that companies are not using Excel to its fullest capacity.

How to make better use of Excel’s IF function ---

It's OK to "Forget" What You Read ---

When Public Scholarship Is a Crime ---

Helen Mirren to Teach Her First Online Course on Acting  ---

Lawsuit Alleges Golden State Warriors Used Smartphone App to Spy on Fans ---
Jensen Comment
The Warriors can even log your farts and burps.

Virginia mom charged after sending daughter to school with device to record alleged bullying ---

Jensen Comment
Increasingly third parties illicitly record video and audio without consent, especially recordings of police activity later broadcast on the media.

Many (most?) schools have rules against illicit video and audio recording such as recording of classroom presentations.

Many (most?) stores, banks, etc. have video recording devices, and most have door entrance notices that video is being recorded. However, most of these do not record audio.

USA video and audio recording laws vary by state, with a key difference between requiring one-party versus two-party consent for audio recording that affect, but are not limited to, recording of telephone conversations and security camera recordings. ---

Telephone Recording Laws --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telephone_recording_laws#All-party_consent_states

Audio Home Recording Act of 1992 ---

Video Recordings Acts of 1994 and 2010 ---

The Yahoo Breach Crime Solved:  Is there any surprise that it's Russian-Based
A Canadian citizen accused of helping Russian spies hack into Yahoo accounts will plead guilty ---

The New Yorker Writes About a "Small" Iowa Town:  Leave or Stay
In a small town in Iowa where the American dream lives on, residents wonder whether to resolve conflicts or fulfill their longings by moving away or staying put ---

Jensen Comment
Note that Orange City featured in this is a relatively large Iowa town in a state filled with towns having less than 1,000 residents. There were many "thriving" Iowa towns back in the days when they were surrounded by small family farms of 80-160 acres. When I grew up in the 1950s on both a farm and later in town farmers did not have to invest heavily in equipment, and most farmers were still supplementing a small tractor with horses and mules. At harvest time threshing machines moved from farm to farm, thereby making it unnecessary for every farmer to own a threshing machine. Now making a living on 240 acres is a marginal operation given the nearly $2 million needed for enormous tractors, combines, sprayers. planters, tanks, etc. There's no profit in raising a few cows, sheep, chickens, and turkeys that are now raised in enormous containment feeding operations holding thousands or tens of thousands of animals.

When the families sold off their small farms to bigger farms there were fewer and fewer customers shopping in small Iowa farm towns. Many downtown stores were boarded up or torn down and town schools closed to become part of every larger school districts covering multiple towns. Jobs dried up in the small towns such that residents that wanted to stay either could not find and work or could only find part-time work at minimum wage --- not a living wage for a family.

One of the things that shocked me is that there was almost no market for the big two-story house my grandfather built in Swea City around 1900. The oak-paneled house had four bedrooms plus a den along with a living room, dining room, big kitchen, and den. When I returned for a visit to Swea City in the 1960s this well-maintained house with a big porch could be purchased for less than $10,000. In Des Moines such a house would be priced at well over $100,000. The thing is that Des Moines has a viable economy with over 200,000 residents and many career opportunities to work in town. Swea City has around 500 residents, most of whom are retired farmers who choose living in Swea City because of the cheap housing. But they have to drive over 30 miles to larger towns for shopping since the grocery stores, the clothing stores, the hardware stores, the drug stores, etc. are now boarded over in Swea City. There are very few jobs available today in Swea City, Iowa.

What caused the demise of small Iowa towns like Swea City?
 Firstly, it was the demise of the small family farms that used to surround the towns with a customer base. Second, it was the change in professional services where professionals like physicians and lawyers now prefer to no longer be sole-practitioners serving a small community. Now professionals prefer to be in medical clinics and multiple-partner law firms located in larger towns and serving smaller communities from a distance. What medical school graduate or law school graduate wants to set up a one-person practice in Swea City, Iowa? Thirdly, it was changing roads and vehicles. In the 1960s Iowa knocked the curbs off its narrow highways and straitened out the sharp curves such that the trip from Swea to the larger Algona now takes about 30 minutes for shopping rather than upwards of an hour that it used to take in the 1930s. Plus in the 1930s drivers sometimes had to stop once or twice to put patches on inner tubes of flat tires. In the 21st Century it's relatively rare to have a flat tire driving from Swea City to Algona.

The economic sacrifice made to raise a family in a small Iowa town is negatively correlated with the size of the town coupled with other factors such as having an area college and hospital in the town and commuting distance to a larger town for jobs. Orange City featured in the above article has over 6,000 residents making it a relatively large Iowa town. But it's also remotely located such that not many residents want to commute elsewhere for jobs. That makes the above article somewhat interesting since there are some economic opportunities in Orange City for those who want to remain and raise their families in Orange City.

Bob Jensen's Memories About Growing Up in Iowa

·         Short story entitled My Glimpse of Heaven:  What I learned from Max and Gwen

Sequel:  About My Grandfather Dourte with a link to  Hierogliphe's ancestry
A short story about my grandfather Christian Granville Dourte

·         Short story entitled Mrs. Applegate's Boarding House (with Navy pictures)

Harper's Magazine:  The Chronicle of a Dire Education ---

No More Easy A's: Classroom Can Be a Breeding Ground for Grit (Q&A) --- |

When positive-psychology expert and author Caroline Adams Miller began parenting in the late 1980s and early 1990s, it was the height of the self-esteem movement and what Miller dubs the "everyone's a winner era." She noticed that many of her children's peers attended the kinds of ceremonies where everyone got a medal. Their schools inflated grades or threw them out the window altogether. Parents lowered expectations and went to great lengths to make children feel special, boosting mediocrity in the process. Miller describes this age group (who are now millennials) as the "bubble-wrapped generation." Why weren't these...

Register free to keep reading

Home Schooling (Homeschooling) --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeschooling

Data Snapshot: Who Are the Nation’s Homeschoolers?

A recently released batch of federal data offers a portrait of the nation’s homeschool population, including the backgrounds of students and their families’ reasons for choosing that option.

The information provides potentially useful intel for companies that are working in the homeschool market or thinking of jumping into it. The data are included in the First Look report on Parent and Family Involvement in Education, a collection of survey results published by the National Center for Education Statistics, in which parents were asked a series of questions about their children’s education.

One of the most interesting findings is that the percentage of U.S. students who are homeschooled appears to have leveled off in recent years.

In 1999, 1.7 percent of the nation’s students were homeschooled, and that number rose fairly steadily over time, to reach 3.4 percent in 2012. Yet in 2016, the portion of homeschoolers basically flatlined, at 3.3 percent. (Kudos to Sarah Grady, a statistician and project officer with NCES for laying this out in admirably digestible form in a recent blog post.)

The total number of U.S. homeschool students stood at 1,689,726 last year, according to the report.

The demands of homeschool families have been evolving in recent years, as my colleague Michelle Davis recently reported in a story in EdWeek Market Brief. The rapid growth of digital programs and curricula have given families greater freedom to buy all-in-one curricula or choose from a menu of online options.

The universe of companies serving homeschoolers today includes curriculum companies like Calvert Education and Sonlight—a Christian-focused academic program—as well as huge online providers like K12 Inc. and Connections Academy, owned by Pearson.

What would explain the flattening out of the homeschool population after years of growth? Indiana University Professor Christopher Lubienski offered my colleague Arianna Prothero a couple possible reasons. One might be that the Christian homeschool movement has traded an interest in rapid expansion for a focus on retrenching and supporting the rights of current homeschoolers. An overall slowing of the economy during the period in question might also be a factor, as could the potential for the homeschool population’s growth reaching a ceiling, Lubienski speculated.

The NCES report also offers data on what kinds of communities—cities, suburbs, towns, or rural areas—homeschool students are based in. Suburban students make up the biggest slice of the homeschool population:

Male students slightly outnumber females, the data show. The largest portion of homeschool students, nearly 60 percent, are white; followed by 26 percent, Hispanic; 8 percent, black, non-Hispanic; 4 percent other non-Hispanic; and 3 percent Asian or Pacific Islander.

The data also speak to the equivalent grade levels of homeschool students. The largest portion, 31 percent, are high school age; 24 percent are the equivalent of grades 6-8; 23 percent are grades K-2, and 22 percent are grades 3-5.

Twenty-one percent of homeschool students are from impoverished backgrounds, and 79 percent are considered non-poor, according to NCES. The measurement is based on whether students are above or below the poverty threshold.

Continued in article

The Culture War Being Fought Over Tomorrow’s Libraries ---

Transforming Our Libraries from Analog to Digital: A 2020 Vision ---

How Denver Public Library Balances Books and Being A Homeless Shelter ---

Cheap books, high price: why Amazon.com’s ‘one-click’ sales can cost authors dear ---

Virginia Becomes First State to Require Computer Science Instruction ---

AACU: Models of Global Learning Philosophy --- www.aacu.org/sites/default/files/files/publications/ModelsGlobalLearning.pdf

The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU) recently published this thirty-two-page report about the General Education for a Global Century (GEGC), a recent project of the AACU's Shared Futures Initiative. This initiative, implemented at thirty-two colleges and universities across the United States, aims to "increase the capacity of colleges and universities to help all undergraduates understand and engage the diversities and commonalities among the world's peoples, cultures, nations, and regions" through curriculum development, faculty professional development, and pilot programs.

There are over 4,000 colleges and universities in the United States, but Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen says that half are bound for bankruptcy in the next few decades ---

Jensen Comment
This is misleading without an analysis of Professor Christensen's explicit and implicit assumptions. For example, financially distressed colleges and universities will look to alternative operations and financing models that are not analyzed by Christensen. Also, much depends upon changes in the way education is financed. For example, New York taxpayers are now providing free education to students who did not previously qualify for full funding of their diplomas. Financially distressed universities like the University of Illinois are turning more and more to cash-paying foreign students.

There are, however, financial distresses that need attention. Colleges and universities that dug themselves deeper into low-interest debt in the past decade will have a rude awakening if and when that debt must be rolled over with higher interest debt. The demand for traditional diplomas may decline at competency badges/certificates become increasingly accepted in employment markets.

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

What 150 Years of Education Statistics Say About Schools Today (K-12) ---

Long before there was an independent federal education department—before many states had school systems, in fact—there was a federal education statistics agency.

Today, the National Center for Education Statistics celebrates its 150th anniversary (albeit without a permanent commissioner in place). Though the agency remains independent of the Education Department, its work has laid a bedrock for education policy in the United States in areas from large-scale testing, to tracking students over time, to using surveys and local administrative data to understand changes in schools.

Continued in report (not free)

You Are Not So Smart (bias in understandings) --- https://youarenotsosmart.com/

The Great Turnaround
The 'Trump Bump' Grows As College Grads From Both Sides Of The Political Spectrum Flock To Law School ---

Facebook, Google and others join The Trust Project, an effort to increase transparency around online news ---

Blockchain --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blockchain
So much more than bitcoin and crytocurrency

Seven Ways Blockchain Will Enable Entrepreneurs in 2018 ---

Big banks’ blockchain specialists are flocking to cryptocurrency firms in search of freedom ---

Best Books of 2017 According to Amazon.com Editors ---

Time Magazine's (Controversial) Picks for Top 10 Nonfiction Books for 2017 ---

The New York Times (Controversial) Picks for Top 10 Nonfiction Books for 2017 ---

Amazon's Best Sellers for Nonfiction Books in 2017 ---

Goodreads Top 10 Nonfiction Books for 2017 ---

The Times (Literary) Picks for Top 10 Nonfiction Books for 2017 ---

The Rub of Time: Bellow, Nabokov, Hitchens, Travolta, Trump and Other Pieces, 1994-2016
by Martin Amis
He’s no longer an enfant, but he’s still terrible. Martin Amis’s latest collection of essays is full of controversial fun. He roves far and wide. Naturally, there’s a lot about literature — especially his great heroes Vladimir Nabokov and Saul Bellow. He also has interesting stuff to say about pornography, tennis and politics. Jeremy Corbyn is characterised by “slow-minded rigidity” and Princess Diana had “no talent”.
Jonathan Cape, 356pp; £20

House of Fiction: From Pemberley to Brideshead, Great British Houses in Literature and Life
by Phyllis Richardson
Where would you rather live? Brideshead Castle? Pemberley? Certainly not Miss Havisham’s Satis House. House of Fiction is a lively tour of fictional property. Phyllis Richardson takes us everywhere, from the elegant houses of Henry James to JG Ballard’s grim tower blocks via Dickens’s eccentric households and Ratty’s and Mole’s snug abodes.
Unbound, 460pp; £20

The Dawn Watch: Joseph Conrad in a Global World
by Maya Jasanoff
Most novelists don’t have very interesting lives: lots of sitting at home writing, maybe the odd affair. Joseph Conrad is quite a different case. He spent 20 years at sea in the Merchant Navy. Maya Jasanoff reckons that Conrad is a novelist uniquely able to speak to our modern globalised world. The man was globalism incarnate: he was born in Ukraine, travelled to India and the Congo and he died a British citizen. Jasanoff argues that his books have a lot to say about pressing contemporary issues such as terrorism, immigration and the rise of new technologies.
William Collins, 375pp; £25

The Anna Karenina Fix: Life Lessons from Russian Literature
by Viv Groskop
Russian literature. Boring and difficult, eh? Just a load of tedious peasants and monks droning about theology. Not so, says Viv Groskop in this light-hearted romp through the country’s greatest books: Anna Karenina, Crime and Punishment, Eugene Onegin and so on. It’s stuffed full of excellent facts (who knew Gogol invented a cocktail called the “Gogol Mogol”) and makes a good fist of explaining why these books still matter. It also usefully explains how those confusing patronymics work.
Fig Tree, 217pp; £14.99

Anthony Powell: Dancing to the Music of Time
by Hilary Spurling
Anthony Powell is sometimes called “the English Proust”. His masterpiece, A Dance to the Music of Time, chronicles the world of English upper-class bohemia in the middle years of the 20th century. Hilary Spurling’s landmark biography shows that Powell was far from being that unfair caricature of a snobby toff. He was something of an outsider who had to battle away money worries, ward off crippling melancholia — there were days when he was confined to bed by sheer misery — and fight his way into the heart of the establishment.
Hamish Hamilton, 528pp; £25

Jacob’s Room Is Full of Books: A Year of Reading
by Susan Hill
Christmas is the perfect time for books such as this. Susan Hill is most famous as the author of The Woman in Black. Jacob’s Room is Full of Books, a follow-up to Howards End Is on the Landing, is a memoir of a year’s reading. Hill is a notably eclectic reader and her book takes in everything from the Beano to Nabokov’s Lectures on Literature. It will stir up your love for old classics and send you scurrying off in search of exciting new reads you had never heard of.
Profile, 266pp; £12.99

Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense
by Jenny Uglow
There’s much more to Edward Lear than limericks. Jenny Uglow’s thorough and charming biography guides us through a life that is much sadder than his nonsense poems might suggest. He suffered from epilepsy, and the love of his life, a younger man called Frank Lushington, didn’t return his affection. Lear spent his life travelling the world — and painting quite a lot of it too. Not all writers emerge from their biographies as likeable people, but the slightly sad figure of Lear seems like just the sort of chap you’d love to have as a friend.
Faber, 598pp; £25

The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve
by Stephen Greenblatt
The story of Adam and Eve is a good one. Stephen Greenblatt sets out to tell the story of the story — and it’s just as fascinating. Greenblatt canters through millennia of human history with ease. We hear about the headache that the Adam and Eve tale caused for early theologians, about its interpretation in the Renaissance and its eventual debunking in the Enlightenment. Along the way Greenblatt wonders whether chimpanzees live in an Adam and Eve-like paradise. Not quite, is the answer.
Bodley Head, 419pp; £25

The Letters of Sylvia Plath Volume I: 1940-1956
ed. Peter Steinberg and Karen Kukil
The publication of Sylvia Plath’s letters was a huge event for Plath obsessives. Her slangy, vivid correspondence charts her journey from japes and petty jealousies at summer camp as a teenager to the defining relationship of her life with the poet Ted Hughes (or “Dearest Teddy-ponk”, as he is amusingly christened in one letter). We hear about her time at university, her illnesses and the electro-shock therapy she underwent as a result of her depression.


Best Books of the Year at Amazon.com

Birthday:  Amazon's Kindle turns 10: have ebooks clicked with you yet? ---

Will voice assistants also change the landscape between teachers and students?

THE VOICE ASSISTANT LANDSCAPE REPORT: How artificially intelligent voice assistants are changing the relationship between consumers and computers ---

Companies are cashing in on chat apps ---

Jensen Comment
I'm betting that the next big thing in education technology will be Chatbots ---

QuickBooks Develops a Chatbot ---

Rolling Stone
Elon Musk: The Architect of Tomorrow ---

Fudging the Numbers
Elon Musk touted ranges and charging times that don’t compute with the current physics and economics of batteries. Experts suspect Tesla may be banking on technological improvements between now and when new vehicles are actually ready for delivery ---

Former GM exec calls Tesla a 'losing enterprise,' and says it's 'going out of business' ---

More Than Just a Deposit:  Elon Musk unveiled his latest plan to raise funds: asking customers to pay upfront for Tesla vehicles that may not be delivered for years ---

Jensen Comment
Musk's downfall probably will be failing to deliver on product output and financial promises made to investors. He's a brilliant scientist/engineer and a dubious business executive.

His success in the electric car and electric storage industry is also too reliant on one resource --- lithium.
This presents a huge challenge to financial reporting of investment risk.

Earth has the lithium. The next dozen years will drain less than 1 percent of the reserves in the ground, BNEF says ---
Jensen Comment
But there's a huge shortage of mines, and making lithium batteries and recycling these batteries are not environmentally friendly ---
Also see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithium-ion_battery

Towns in California Praying for Code Violations
Minor Violations Lead to Massive Prosecution Fees in Two California Desert Towns ---

Blackboard is planning to introduce a new feature in its learning management system later this year to help instructors grade students’ participation in class discussions online ---

Jensen Comment
This is analogous to computer grading of essays that is common for some testing services (think GMAT) and occasionally used to grade essays at prestigious universities ---

New research shows how much consumers value digital vs physical media ---

Jensen Comment
There are advantages and disadvantages to digital versions of things like books. The enormous advantage is the ease of search using target words. Another advantage is the ease of adding hot links and multimedia to text --- such as video clips. There are other advantages such as the ease of instant downloading on the Internet and, when allowed, cutting and pasting of quotations.

The disadvantages are having to have devices that bring the digital versions into view. Hard copy is sometimes less trouble. For example, I leave physical copies of reading material in the back of our cars so that I can grab something to read while waiting in a medical office. Also many (most) of us still prefer reading hard copy books and magazines.

State-by-State Guide to Taxes on Retirees ---
https://www.kiplinger.com/tool/retirement/T055-S001-state-by-state-guide-to-taxes-on-retirees/index.php |
Thank you Ed Scribner for the heads up

Where does our number sense come from? Is it a neural capacity we are born with — or is it a product of our culture?  ---

Jensen Comment
One of the mysteries in life is how some autistic children and music prodigies (think Mozart and his sister) learn music so well at a very early age with little evidence of help while most of us had so much trouble learning to play music with help along the way. I never played well with lessons.

There are related mysteries. My mother was a pianist (and later organist) who learned to play with help from a teacher who taught her to read music and the theory of transposition of keys. However, her talent for playing songs she heard on the radio was seemingly unlearned. She could listen to a song and then play it without having the printed music to read --- a gift not shared by most pianists. One of the ways she contributed to the family income when I was a child was to play a Wurlitzer organ in the center of a roller rink in Emmetsburg, Iowa. Skaters could simply request pops tunes, and she could play those tunes without having to buy the sheet music. On Sundays in church, however, she needed the sheet music for classical scores such as her preludes of Bach. Playing by ear has its limits.

Second Life Virtual World --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Life

The Atlantic:  The Digital Ruins of a Forgotten Future ---

Bob Jensen's threads on Second Life and Other Virtual Worlds (including accounting education and IRS experiments) ---

Shiny Things: 3D Printing and Pedagogy in the Library (what's lacking most is expertise)---

Gretchen Morgenson --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gretchen_Morgenson

GRETCHEN MORGENSON's Farewell Piece as Financial Editor of The New York Times (she's moving to the WSJ)
November 10, 2017

After 20 Years of Financial Turmoil, a Columnist’s Last Shot

For the past 20 years or so, as a business columnist for The New York Times, I’ve had a front-row seat for bull and bear markets, scandals, crises and management mischief.

But I am leaving The Times, and this is my last shot at Fair Game. So it seems a fitting moment to look back at what’s changed and what hasn’t in the financial world, for better or worse.

In addition to a string of garden-variety banking and business scandals, four seismic financial events occurred during my time as a columnist: the collapse of the Long-Term Capital Management hedge fund in 1998, the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000, the accounting scandals of Enron in 2001 and WorldCom in 2002, and the mother of them all — the mortgage debacle — in 2008. That one brought world economies to the precipice and wiped out Lehman Brothers and a raft of troubled banks.

That many episodes of financial tumult in two decades seem like a lot.

Some of this turmoil has generated positive change. Accounting scandals, for example, have been much rarer since Enron and WorldCom shook the financial markets. One reason: a 2002 federal law, known as Sarbanes-Oxley, requiring top executives to attest to the accuracy of their companies’ financial statements.

“Sarbanes-Oxley came into effect 15 years ago, and there have been fewer accounting scandals and more accountability,” said Jack Ciesielski, founder of R. G. Associates and publisher of The Analyst’s Accounting Observer, an accounting research service. “Those accounting scandals were a crisis we should be thankful for; we got through it, a law was passed, and it works.”

Continued in article

From Bob Jensen's Rotten to the Core Archives ---

Sample Article by Gretchen Morgenson in 2005 (before the economic collapse of 2007)
A recent academic study compared ratings by Moody's with those of Egan-Jones. William H. Beaver, professor of accounting at Stanford's graduate school of business, Catherine Shakespeare, assistant professor at the University of Michigan Business School and Mark T. Soliman, also at Stanford, analyzed ratings on some 800 companies made by both services from 1997 to 2002.  The academics found that Egan-Jones's ratings changes were more timely than those of Moody's, coming up to six months sooner. The study also found much higher stock returns after rating changes by Egan-Jones than by those of Moody's.  "Using several tests we find that the noncertified firm, EJR is more responsive and closely associated with investors," the study noted.
"Wanted: Credit Ratings. Objective Ones, Please," by Gretchen Morgenson, The New York Times, February 6, 2005 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/06/business/yourmoney/06gret.html?oref=login  

For years, the nation's credit rating agencies have thrived, booking mouth-watering profits from operations that are riddled with conflicts and shielded from competition.

Soon, however, that may finally change. And investors should be better off for it.

Within the next two months, the Securities and Exchange Commission will press a new regulatory framework for the industry to ensure that debt ratings published by the big three - Standard & Poor's, Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings - are a result of thorough analysis, not a desire for fatter profits.

"I think it's fair to say that the oversight of the industry is insufficient," said Annette L. Nazareth, director of market regulation at the Securities and Exchange Commission. "We want the firms to commit to meet certain standards with respect to policies and procedures on conflicts of interest and solicitation of ratings. Right now we don't have that at all."

Now that would be an upgrade, long overdue. Indeed, given how regulators have attacked conflicts of interest among Wall Street firms, insurance companies and other financial services concerns, it's astounding that the ratings agencies have been allowed to go on this way for so long.

Rating agencies play an enormous role in a huge market. After all, far more debt is issued than stock; last year, corporations issued $1.2 trillion in straight debt versus $146 billion raised in common stock, according to Thomson First Call. An additional $1.4 trillion was issued last year in mortgage debt and asset-backed securities.

All that paper needed a rating before it could be sold to the public. As such, the financial markets rely heavily on the companies that rate them.

Since 1931, for example, the Federal Reserve Board, the Comptroller of the Currency and federal and state laws have regulated the debt held by banks and other financial institutions, using credit ratings assigned to the debt. Pension funds, banks and money market funds are barred from buying debt issues that carry ratings below a certain level.

But not just any rating agency's rating, mind you. In 1975, the S.E.C. ruled that the laws relating to debt carried by banks and financial institutions refer only to ratings provided by agencies that it recognizes. Right now, these are the big three and a much smaller fourth, Dominion Bond Rating Service of Canada.

What you have, in other words, is an oligopoly.

Even more troubling, this oligopoly earns its keep from fees charged to the companies whose debt it rates. This conflicted business model means that the paying customers for these agencies are the corporations they analyze, not the investors who look to the ratings for help in assessing a company's creditworthiness.

Other industry practices also lend themselves to producing less-than-rigorous analysis. For example, rating agencies typically receive the largest fees when they analyze an initial bond issue. After that a nominal fee is levied, providing something of a disincentive to do in-depth, time-consuming work.

And because the nation's courts have ruled that the work of these agencies is opinion and therefore protected by the First Amendment, the big three are protected from lawsuits from investors contending defective analysis. Such lawsuits could act as policing mechanisms.

To make matters worse, these companies have recently begun to expand the services they offer to corporations, leading regulators to fear that ratings could be swayed by revenues earned on other products.

These problems are on the agenda for Tuesday, when Senator Richard C. Shelby, the Alabama Republican who is chairman of the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, will hold hearings on the state of the rating agencies. Executives from the big three are scheduled to testify.

This is not the first time that Standard & Poor's, Moody's and Fitch have been in the hot seat. When Enron and WorldCom failed, investors were stunned by how long it had taken the agencies to recognize the companies' declining fortunes. For example, all three agencies had rated Enron an investment-grade company until four days before it filed for bankruptcy. They had rated WorldCom similarly until a few months before it collapsed.

The rating agencies stress that they analyze debt issuers' financial positions to try to predict for investors an entity's ability to pay off its debt. They are not in place to audit auditors, they say, and cannot root out fraud. Their mandate is to provide transparency to the financial market.

IN an interview on Friday, Raymond W. McDaniel, Jr., president of the Moody's Corporation, acknowledged the industry's conflicts but said his company manages them effectively. "We do not link analyst compensation, including bonus compensation, to the ratings they have on the companies they follow or to the amount of fees they receive from those companies," he said. "Beyond that, we have a collection of business conduct policies and codes of practice and behavior which the entire Moody's population is required to adhere to." Top executives at Standard & Poor's, a division of the McGraw-Hill Companies, and Fitch, a unit of Fimalac, were not available for comment, but both companies said they were aware of the potential for conflicts and careful to prevent them.

Increased competition would certainly help investors who are troubled by the conflicts. Unfortunately, companies hoping to break into the ratings game must first earn the all-important designation from the S.E.C. Such nods do not come often.

One upstart concern that has applied unsuccessfully to the S.E.C. is Egan-Jones Ratings, of Philadelphia. It rates approximately 800 companies and had warned of problems at WorldCom, Enron and Global Crossing well before other agencies. Egan-Jones does not accept payment from companies it rates; investors who use its services pay the freight.

A recent academic study compared ratings by Moody's with those of Egan-Jones. William H. Beaver, professor of accounting at Stanford's graduate school of business, Catherine Shakespeare, assistant professor at the University of Michigan Business School and Mark T. Soliman, also at Stanford, analyzed ratings on some 800 companies made by both services from 1997 to 2002.

The academics found that Egan-Jones's ratings changes were more timely than those of Moody's, coming up to six months sooner. The study also found much higher stock returns after rating changes by Egan-Jones than by those of Moody's.

"Using several tests we find that the noncertified firm, EJR is more responsive and closely associated with investors," the study noted.

There is no evidence, of course, that Moody's tardiness is a result of a conflicted business model. And Mr. McDaniel maintains that ratings stability and accuracy are what customers want. "The market has become extremely intolerant of false positives or false negatives, and encouraged the ratings to only be moved when there is not a likelihood that they would be reversed," he said.

But Sean J. Egan, managing director of Egan-Jones, said: "Timely, accurate credit ratings are critical for robust capital markets. Investors, issuers, workers and pensioners will continue to be hurt by the flawed credit rating industry until someone addresses the basic industry problems."

Maybe, just maybe, that process has begun.

February 6, 2005 message from Tom Lechner [lechner@oswego.edu]

Thanks for another insightful post.

I assume you mean if your credit score FALLS that Capital One will increase your rate.

Incidentally, MBNA more than doubled my interest rate, even though my score was rising and I never missed a payment.

You say your credit report and score are free. A free credit report is currently only available for those in the west. Those of us in the east have to wait until fall. I do not know of any source of free credit scores. Do you?

Tom Lechner

Dr. Thomas A. Lechner
Dept. Accounting, Finance & Law
SUNY - Oswego Oswego, NY 13126

February 6, 2005 reply from Bob Jensen

I was careless in mentioning that you can get a free credit report and FICO score. Not everyone can get these as of yet. There is a stupid, perhaps technically necessary, lagged in part of this that began in the West and will roll across the country in phases. It is very important to read the rules of the road at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/edcams/credit/ycr_free_reports.htm 

Some outfits are advertising free credit reports now, but read the fine print and consumer beware:



Thank you Tom Lechner!

Bob Jensen

Two Other Samples by Gretchen Morgenson

Nothing wrong with overcharging, so long as everyone else is doing it, right?

"The Mutual Fund Scandal's Next Chapter," by Gretchen Morgenson, The New York Times, December 7, 2003 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/07/business/yourmoney/07watc.html  

IT'S hard to know where the ever-amazing mutual fund scandal will take investors next. But here is a clue. Regulators are setting their sights on two new areas: funds that fail to price their portfolios properly each day and those charging excessive fees.

Funds with stale pricing - net asset values that do not reflect market reality - are coming under scrutiny. "We are going to make sure that funds are priced properly even without any indication that there has been abusive market timing," said Stephen M. Cutler, director of enforcement at the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Of particular interest are corporate or municipal bond funds whose net asset values stay mysteriously inert even as the United States Treasury market is gyrating wildly. Investors in funds whose net asset values have not reacted to major moves may be paying or receiving the wrong prices. Moreover, stale prices in bond funds provide fine opportunities for market timers who jump in and out of funds to take advantage of out-of-whack prices.

A case in point is what occurred in the Treasury market last August. During the first week of the month, Treasury securities maturing in five years yielded between 3.1 percent and 3.22 percent. The following week, however, Treasuries fell and their yields moved sharply higher. By Aug. 15, yields on the 5-year Treasury had jumped to 3.4 percent.

What happens in the United States Treasury market ripples through other parts of the fixed-income world, affecting prices in corporate, mortgage-backed and municipal securities. Yet some bond funds appeared to be oddly impervious to the August moves. Consider, for example, the Franklin AGE High Income fund, which invests in speculative-grade debt. From Aug. 8 through Aug. 18, while the yields on Treasuries went from 3.18 percent to 3.4 percent, the Franklin fund's net asset value, the price at which it is bought and sold, was constant at $1.87, except for one day when it hit $1.88. And the week of Sept. 8, when Treasury yields fell from 3.34 percent to 3.14 percent, the Franklin fund's net asset value stood still at $1.95.

Here's another anomaly. For three weeks beginning on Aug. 4, the net asset value of the Quaker Intermediate Municipal Bond fund, which also invests in high-yield debt, remained at $4.91.

A Franklin spokesman declined to comment on why the fund did not move; he would say only that it was being priced correctly. A Quaker spokesman did not return a call seeking comment.

On the fees front, Mr. Cutler said his staff was looking closely at stock index funds that levy fees a lot higher than lower-cost funds like those offered by Vanguard Funds. The Vanguard 500 Index fund has an expense ratio of 0.18 percent, or 18 basis points.

While the S.E.C. is not in the business of legislating mutual fund fees, Mr. Cutler said the commission is interested in hearing how fund boards justify agreeing to pay higher fees to an adviser for what is essentially fund management on autopilot.

Consider the MainStay Equity Index fund, whose investment adviser is New York Life Investment Management. Its expense ratio is an astonishing 1.02 percent annually. Slightly less egregious but still expensive is the Northern Stock Index fund,which charges 0.55 percent annually.

A MainStay spokesman did not return a call seeking comment.

Lloyd Wennlund, a spokesman for Northern Trust, manager of the Northern Index Fund, said that it charges shareholders a fee at or below the median expense ratio of similar funds. The median expense ratio for Standard & Poor's index funds, he said, is 57.5 basis points. "We are higher than a Vanguard, sure," he said, "but our goal is to provide value to shareholders at a price that is at or below median pricing."

Nothing wrong with overcharging, so long as everyone else is doing it, right?

"Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won," by Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story, The New York Times, December 23, 2009 ---
My friend Larry clued me in to this link.

In late October 2007, as the financial markets were starting to come unglued, a Goldman Sachs trader, Jonathan M. Egol, received very good news. At 37, he was named a managing director at the firm.

Mr. Egol, a Princeton graduate, had risen to prominence inside the bank by creating mortgage-related securities, named Abacus, that were at first intended to protect Goldman from investment losses if the housing market collapsed. As the market soured, Goldman created even more of these securities, enabling it to pocket huge profits.

Goldman’s own clients who bought them, however, were less fortunate.

Pension funds and insurance companies lost billions of dollars on securities that they believed were solid investments, according to former Goldman employees with direct knowledge of the deals who asked not to be identified because they have confidentiality agreements with the firm.

Goldman was not the only firm that peddled these complex securities — known as synthetic collateralized debt obligations, or C.D.O.’s — and then made financial bets against them, called selling short in Wall Street parlance. Others that created similar securities and then bet they would fail, according to Wall Street traders, include Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley, as well as smaller firms like Tricadia Inc., an investment company whose parent firm was overseen by Lewis A. Sachs, who this year became a special counselor to Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner.

How these disastrously performing securities were devised is now the subject of scrutiny by investigators in Congress, at the Securities and Exchange Commission and at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Wall Street’s self-regulatory organization, according to people briefed on the investigations. Those involved with the inquiries declined to comment.

While the investigations are in the early phases, authorities appear to be looking at whether securities laws or rules of fair dealing were violated by firms that created and sold these mortgage-linked debt instruments and then bet against the clients who purchased them, people briefed on the matter say.

One focus of the inquiry is whether the firms creating the securities purposely helped to select especially risky mortgage-linked assets that would be most likely to crater, setting their clients up to lose billions of dollars if the housing market imploded.

Some securities packaged by Goldman and Tricadia ended up being so vulnerable that they soured within months of being created.

Goldman and other Wall Street firms maintain there is nothing improper about synthetic C.D.O.’s, saying that they typically employ many trading techniques to hedge investments and protect against losses. They add that many prudent investors often do the same. Goldman used these securities initially to offset any potential losses stemming from its positive bets on mortgage securities.

But Goldman and other firms eventually used the C.D.O.’s to place unusually large negative bets that were not mainly for hedging purposes, and investors and industry experts say that put the firms at odds with their own clients’ interests.

“The simultaneous selling of securities to customers and shorting them because they believed they were going to default is the most cynical use of credit information that I have ever seen,” said Sylvain R. Raynes, an expert in structured finance at R & R Consulting in New York. “When you buy protection against an event that you have a hand in causing, you are buying fire insurance on someone else’s house and then committing arson.”

Investment banks were not alone in reaping rich rewards by placing trades against synthetic C.D.O.’s. Some hedge funds also benefited, including Paulson & Company, according to former Goldman workers and people at other banks familiar with that firm’s trading.

Michael DuVally, a Goldman Sachs spokesman, declined to make Mr. Egol available for comment. But Mr. DuVally said many of the C.D.O.’s created by Wall Street were made to satisfy client demand for such products, which the clients thought would produce profits because they had an optimistic view of the housing market. In addition, he said that clients knew Goldman might be betting against mortgages linked to the securities, and that the buyers of synthetic mortgage C.D.O.’s were large, sophisticated investors, he said.

The creation and sale of synthetic C.D.O.’s helped make the financial crisis worse than it might otherwise have been, effectively multiplying losses by providing more securities to bet against. Some $8 billion in these securities remain on the books at American International Group, the giant insurer rescued by the government in September 2008.

From 2005 through 2007, at least $108 billion in these securities was issued, according to Dealogic, a financial data firm. And the actual volume was much higher because synthetic C.D.O.’s and other customized trades are unregulated and often not reported to any financial exchange or market.

Goldman Saw It Coming

Before the financial crisis, many investors — large American and European banks, pension funds, insurance companies and even some hedge funds — failed to recognize that overextended borrowers would default on their mortgages, and they kept increasing their investments in mortgage-related securities. As the mortgage market collapsed, they suffered steep losses.

Continued in article

Chronicle of Higher Education
Investigation Finds Napolitano’s Aides Interfered in State Audit of U. of California ---

After Losing 50% od Freshman Class in Three Years
The new chancellor of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale has big plans to eliminate all departments across campus, in the name of “synergy” and cost savings ---

Best Books of the Year at Amazon.com

Birthday:  Amazon's Kindle turns 10: have ebooks clicked with you yet? ---

Despite their importance in public discourse, numbers in the range of 1 million to 1 trillion are notoriously difficult to understand ---

Retraction Watch:  “Profoundly sorry” researcher retracts Alzheimer’s-DDT paper ---

What Caught Our Attention: Does exposure to pesticides such as DDT influence the onset of Alzheimer’s? Hard to say, especially after a researcher retracted a recent paper purporting to find a link in mice, a few months after a press release was issued about the work. The notice took on an unusual format — it was in the form of a personal letter from senior author Mark Robson, who issued a heartfelt apology for calculation mistakes and flawed data. The retraction appears in a publication of the National Institute of Public Health-National Institute of Hygiene in Poland; Robson has published six papers there since 2014 (including the newly retracted paper).

Ways to stop elder financial abuse before it starts ---

Bob Jensen's free personal finance helpers ---

The Rise and Fall of the English Sentence ---

Fair Use Act --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FAIR_USE_Act

Chronicle of Higher Education
Fair Use Too Often Goes Unused ---

When you are writing a book analyzing images from Kurosawa’s Rashomon, you should include images from the classic 1950 film. The logic behind that seems straightforward — but the logistics can be less so.

For Blair Davis, an assistant professor of communications at DePaul University who edited Rashomon Effects: Kurosawa, Rashomon and their Legacies, published in 2015 by Routledge, getting permission to use the stills in the book turned out to be almost as difficult as ferreting out the truth in the film itself.

"I spent at least a year dealing with the Japanese corporation Kodansha, which owns the rights," Davis told me by email. He had to "hire someone who spoke Japanese to conduct face-to-face negotiations in Japan." Worse, in the end, Davis wasn’t even allowed to use the images he had asked for. Kodansha insisted he choose from a small selection of publicity photos, rather than the scenes actually analyzed in the text.

Davis’s acquisition process was more arduous than most, but the general predicament will be familiar to many academics who work with film, art, comics, or other visual materials. Many academic presses and journals require permission for the reprint of any images. For instance, Julia Round, a principal lecturer at Bournemouth University and editor of the journal Studies in Comics, told me that, at the request of its publisher (Intellect Books), "we always seek image permissions." Only if authors can’t track down permissions holders, Round said, does the journal consider printing small images under the legal doctrine of fair use.

But while publishers want authors to get permission, the law often does not require it. According to Kyle K. Courtney, copyright adviser for Harvard University in its Office for Scholarly Communication, copyright holders have certain rights — for instance, if you hold rights for a comic book, you determine when and by whom it can be reprinted, which is why I can’t just go out and create my own edition of the first Wonder Woman comic. But notwithstanding those rights, fair use gives others the right to reprint materials in certain situations without consulting the author — or even, in some cases, if the author has refused permission.

Courtney explained that courts have used a four-factor test to decide whether or not the reproduction of artwork, or other elements, falls under fair use. Judges look first at the purpose of the use; then at the nature of the copyrighted work itself; then the amount of the work reproduced; and finally at the effect of the use upon the market. Thus, when you publish — for scholarly purposes — a single image from a feature-length film that will not affect the market of the film, you have a good chance of being covered under fair use.

In the last decade, courts have also used the concept of transformative use, Courtney said. If you are using an image for a different purpose than it was originally intended, and thereby transforming it, you have a strong fair-use argument. "So if a comic book at the time period was to entertain, but you’re doing a critical/social analysis of what the comic means today," he said, "you’re applying a new meaning, a new message — you’re transforming the original for a new purpose."

In some recent court cases, judges have upheld fair use after the copyright holder had explicitly denied permission. In the early 2000s, DK publishing was refused permission to reprint Grateful Dead posters for an illustrated history of the band. The publisher reproduced the images anyway, and then defeated the lawsuit in court. Asking a copyright holder for permission does not mean that you vitiate your fair-use rights. (Courtney has created a handy explanatory comic about the case, available here.)

Betsy Phillips, sales and marketing manager at Vanderbilt University Press, said that it evaluates fair-use questions on a "case by case basis." In particular, Vanderbilt treats marketing images very differently from reproductions inside the book. "There’s a difference between a film still on the inside of a book that’s discussed in that book, and a page from a comic book on the cover," she said. The amount of material reproduced is also important: A black or white thumbnail of a detail of a painting would probably be fine, but a high-resolution, full-color image of an entire work might require permission.

Phillips also emphasized that the press tried to keep a clear paper trail of its use of images, including discussions about the rationale for fair use of each image, and why permission did or did not need to be sought. She noted that professional societies often have useful guidelines. For instance, the Society for Cinema and Media Studies discusses fair-use policies on its website.

Of course, some publishers may still prefer to ask for permission each and every time you want your book to reprint an image — it seems safer. If you get permission, you know for sure that you won’t have legal struggles. Why mess about with fair use, where there is at least a small risk of unpleasantness?

Seeking permission may seem safe, but it can have serious ethical and practical downsides.

Consider the case of David W. Stowe, a professor at Michigan State University who wrote Swing Changes: Big-Band Jazz in New Deal America, a 1994 book about the cultural milieu of big-band jazz. Stowe wanted to reproduce cartoons from Down Beat magazine to illustrate the racism and sexism of the era. Down Beat had approved reprint requests for such materials from other scholars. In this instance, however, according to a 2000 account by Lydia Pallas Loren in Open Spaces Quarterly, the magazine refused because "the drawings made the magazine ‘look bad.’" Stowe feared a lawsuit, and so did not use the images. Asking for permission gave the magazine a chance to stifle criticism.

Continued in article

The Gray Zone of Fair Use Safe Harbors in the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act 
For Second Time, Appeals Court Hears GSU E-Reserves Case ---

Academic journal publishing is headed for a day of reckoning (due to outrageous pricing) ---

Jensen Comment
In this age is expensive hardcopy printing and binding of journal articles necessary? Of course the rip-off pricing of prestigious journals by for-profit publishers greatly exceeds cost of printing and distribution ---

Inside Higher Ed:  Blacklisting of the University of Rochester (after EEOC Complaint Was Made Public) ---

In an unusually direct public pressure campaign against sexual harassment, hundreds of faculty members from brain and cognitive sciences and other programs in the U.S. and abroad say they can’t advise students to study or seek employment at the University of Rochester. They cite allegations from current and past professors and students at Rochester that the administration cleared a chronic harasser on the faculty of wrongdoing while retaliating against those who reported him.

“In the present circumstances, we cannot in good conscience encourage our students to pursue educational or employment opportunities” at Rochester, reads a new open letter to the institution’s Board of Trustees. Rochester “has abrogated its ultimate responsibility to protect and advance the interests of its most important constituency -- its students -- by supporting the predator and intimidating the victims and advocates in this case. We strenuously object to the [university’s] treatment of our respected colleagues.”

The open letter links to a widely publicized complaint from eight former and current Rochester brain and cognitive sciences professors and graduate students filed with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission late this summer. The complaint, forwarded to Rochester’s board by two former department chairs in particular, describes the department as once at the top of the research rankings and now broken, possibly irrevocably. It traces the dramatic shift to the hiring of Florian Jaeger, now an associate professor, in 2007.

Description of a Predator

The complaint describes Jaeger as a “narcissistic and manipulative sexual predator” who “engaged in numerous sexual relationships with [Rochester] and visiting students, which he flaunted.” He had unprotected sex with students and confided in others that he worried he might have a sexually transmitted disease, used sexual language and intentionally demeaned female students (especially about their intelligence and weight), and sent an unwanted photo of his genitalia to one particular student, according to the complaint. Among other inappropriate behaviors, he also used drugs and hosted “hot tub parties,” it says.

Continued in article

From the Scout Report on November 17, 2017

Tableau Public

Educational Technology


Tableau Public is a free data visualization suite. It can import and process data from a wide variety of sources, including online sources like Google Sheets or sites that provide Web Data Connectors. Created visualizations can be shared via email, over social media, or embedded in a website. When embedded in a website, visualizations can be both interactive and dynamic. They can update in real time as new data is published. They can also be set up to allow users to filter and explore the data that is displayed. Tableau Public is available for Windows and macOS.


Educational Technology


When a citation to a web resource no longer works, it's referred to as "link rot." This phenomenon can be a serious problem for scholarly and legal works. For example, over 50% of links cited in US Supreme Court opinions no longer refer to the intended content. Perma.cc provides a web archiving framework designed to mitigate this problem. In addition to citing an original source URL, authors may use Perma.cc to create an archival copy of the page they were viewing. This archival copy will be preserved both immutably and indefinitely. Individuals without an institutional affiliation can create a free account that can archive ten links per month. Accounts with no quota are available to faculty members, journal publishers, and courts. Perma.cc works in any modern browser.

Four billion passenger pigeons vanished. Their large population may have been what did them in

Why Did The Passenger Pigeon Go Extinct? The Answer May Lie in their Toes

A Population of Billions May Have Contributed to This Bird's Extinction

The Memory Palace: Lost Pigeons

The Birds

One Man's Passion For The Passenger Pigeon

Debt:  The Cause and Consequences of the Retail Apocalypse ---

Jensen Comment
Keep this in mind as cities, states, and federal governments finance deficits with more and more debt.

Truth in Accounting founder and CEO Sheila Weinberg discusses the findings of TIA's new report on the city of Chicago's financial condition ---
Jensen Comment
Chicago's unpaid bills are mounting just like the mountain of unpaid bills of the State of Illinois is rising above the clouds. For example, physicians and hospitals are refusing services of government employees who cannot pay cash out of their own pockets. Unlike the Federal government states and cities cannot print money to pay their bills.
Truth in Accounting Homepage --- http://www.truthinaccounting.org/
Financial State of States ---
Financial State of States (including Chicago) ---

Because Chicago doesn't have enough money to pay its bills, it has a $37.4 billion financial hole.

From the Scout Report on November , 2017

Structured Data --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_model

GOOGLE'S STRUCTURED DATA TESTING TOOL --- https://search.google.com/structured-data/testing-tool

Traditional web technologies like HTML and CSS focus primarily on formatting content to make it more understandable. Semantic web technologies like RDFa, Microdata, and JSON-LD extend the traditional web in ways that make it easier for machines (primarily search engines) to understand. While it is relatively simple to determine if a page looks as it is intended to, determining if the structured data it contains is properly formatted can be more difficult. Google's Structured Data Testing Tool provides a way to validate the semantic web information exposed on a page. It shows users which elements Google actually understood and what went wrong with the ones that weren't understood. By following the "Learn more about this tool" link, users can find an introduction to semantic web and structured data concepts along with detailed reference material. The Structured Data Testing Tool works in any modern browser

The Connected Vocabularies of Six-Month-Olds

Babies may be able to link certain words and concepts, research suggests

Six-month-old babies know words for common things, but struggle with similar nouns

How Children Learn Language

The linguistic genius of babies

Cornell Cast: Child Language Acquisition and Growth


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

Education Tutorials

AACU: Models of Global Learning Philosophy --- www.aacu.org/sites/default/files/files/publications/ModelsGlobalLearning.pdf

SENIC: Educational Resources (Nanotechnology) --- http://senic.gatech.edu/education-and-outreach/education-resources/

The Periodic Table of the Elements, in Pictures and Words --- http://elements.wlonk.com/ElementsTable.htm

You Are Not So Smart (bias in understandings --- https://youarenotsosmart.com/

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution: K-12 Resources --- www.whoi.edu/main/k-12

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

In Space We Trust --- http://inspacewetrust.org/en/

The Periodic Table of the Elements, in Pictures and Words --- http://elements.wlonk.com/ElementsTable.htm

SENIC: Educational Resources (Nanotechnology) --- http://senic.gatech.edu/education-and-outreach/education-resources/

Chemistry:  Compound Interest: Infographics Index Science --- www.compoundchem.com/infographics

Seismic Illumination --- https://storymaps.esri.com/stories/2017/seismic-illumination/index.html

Two Million Wondrous Nature Illustrations Put Online by The Biodiversity Heritage Library ---

The History of Vaccines --- http://historyofvaccines.org

The Chirurgeon's Apprentice (history of medicine) --- https://thechirurgeonsapprentice.com

History of Air Pollution --- https://ourworldindata.org/air-pollution/

McGill University: History of Medicine: Digital Collections --- http://libraryguides.mcgill.ca/histmed/histmed-home

PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases: 10th Anniversary Collection --- http://collections.plos.org/ntds-10th-anniversary

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution: K-12 Resources --- www.whoi.edu/main/k-12

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 SOCIAL VIDEO REPORT: Content, distribution, and monetization across Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, and Instagram -+--

Data USA (community demographics, such as Medicare reimbursements by county) --- https://datausa.io/
Deloitte played a major role in developing this database

Hollow: An Interactive Documentary (West Virginia) --- http://hollowdocumentary.com/

Bureau of Land Management Library --- https://archive.org/details/blmlibrary

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

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

AnnoTate (invitation for professional historians to transcribe materials) --- https://anno.tate.org.uk/#!/

In Space We Trust --- http://inspacewetrust.org/en/

Stanford University:  Global Currents: Cultures of Literacy Networks --- https://globalcurrents.stanford.edu/

The Barnes Collection Online (art history) --- https://collection.barnesfoundation.org/

Latah County Oral History Collection (Idaho) --- https://www.lib.uidaho.edu/digital/lcoh/

Lesbian Herstory Archive: Audio/Visual Collections --- http://herstories.prattinfoschool.nyc/omeka/

Isabel de Giberne Sieveking: A Conventional Radical (gender studies and photography) ---

AustLit: The Australian Literature Resource Language Arts --- www.austlit.edu.au

Restoration Printed Fiction: A Comprehensive and Searchable Database of Fiction Printed 1660-1700 --- www.faculty.english.ttu.edu/kvande/RPFsite/index.xml

McGill University: History of Medicine: Digital Collections --- http://libraryguides.mcgill.ca/histmed/histmed-home

Indian-Ed.org: Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State --- http://www.indian-ed.org/

Hollow: An Interactive Documentary (West Virginia) --- http://hollowdocumentary.com/

American Indians in Children's Literature --- http://americanindiansinchildrensliterature.blogspot.com

Russian Satirical Journal Collection --- http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/p15799coll1

Veteran Stories: The Memory Project Social studies --- www.thememoryproject.com/stories

Lost Art Press Blog (hand-tool woodworking craft) --- https://blog.lostartpress.com/

Bureau of Land Management Library --- https://archive.org/details/blmlibrary

80s.NYC (1980s) --- http://80s.nyc/

Art Institute of Chicago: Children --- www.artic.edu/aic/collections/artwork/category/188

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

Dictionary of Cook Islands Languages --- http://cookislandsdictionary.com/

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

Music Tutorials

Watch Classical Music Come to Life in Artfully Animated Scores: Stravinsky, Debussy, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart & More ---

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

Bob Jensen's threads on music performances ---

Writing Tutorials

The Rise and Fall of the English Sentence ---

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/

November 15, 2017

November 16, 2017

November 18, 2017

November 20, 2017

November 21, 2017

November 22, 2017

November 27, 2017

November 28, 2017

November 29, 2017

View All Health News

The number of teens who are depressed is soaring — and all signs point to smartphones ---

Video:  The main differences between Advil, Tylenol, Aleve, and Aspirin summed up ---

The Booze You Choose Can Sway Your Mood ---
Jensen Comment
This is more focused on choices like beer, wine, or hard liquor rather than brands. Also there's considerable variability between different drinkers and dependence upon the amount imbibed.

PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases: 10th Anniversary Collection --- http://collections.plos.org/ntds-10th-anniversary

Humor for November 2017

2017 Darwin Awards --- http://darwinawards.com/darwin/darwin2017.html

Ig (Improbable Research) Nobel Prizes --- https://www.improbable.com/ig/
One of the better known 2017 winners:  "Can a Cat Be Both a Solid and a Liquid?"


Forwarded by Paula

A frog goes into a bank and approaches the teller. He can see from her nameplate that her name is Patricia Whack.

"Miss Whack, I'd like to get a $10000 loan to take a holiday."

Patty looks at the frog in disbelief and asks his name. The frog says his name is Kermit Jagger, his dad is Mick Jagger, and that it's OK, he knows the bank manager. Patty explains that he will need to secure the loan with some collateral.

The frog says, "Sure. I have this," and produces a tiny porcelain elephant, about half an inch tall - bright pink and perfectly formed.

Very confused, Patty explains that she'll have to consult with the bank manager and disappears into a back office. She finds the manager and says, "There's a frog called Kermit Jagger out there who claims to know you and wants to borrow $10000, and he wants to use this as collateral."

She holds up the tiny pink elephant.

"I mean, what in the world is this?"

The bank manager looks back at her and says, "It's a knick-knack, Patty Whack, give the frog a loan. His old man's a Rolling Stone."

Forwarded by Paula

Suspicions confirmed:

Five surgeons from big cities are discussing who makes the best patients to operate on.

The first surgeon, from New York, says, 'I like to see accountants on my operating table 

because when you open them up, everything inside is numbered.'
The second, from Chicago, responds, 'Yeah, but you should try electricians! 

Everything inside them is color coded.'
The third surgeon, from Dallas, says, 'No, I really think librarians are the best, 

everything inside them is in alphabetical order.'
The fourth surgeon, from Los Angeles chimes in: 'You know, I like construction workers...

Those guys always understand when you have a few parts left over.'

But the fifth surgeon, from Washington, DC shut them all up when he observed: 'You're all wrong.  

Politicians are the easiest to operate on There's no guts, no heart, no balls, no brains, and no spine.





Humor October 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q4.htm#Humor1017.htm

Humor September 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q3.htm#Humor0917.htm 

Humor August 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q3.htm#Humor0817.htm

Humor July 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q3.htm#Humor0717.htm

Humor June 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q2.htm#Humor0617.htm

Humor May 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q2.htm#Humor0517.htm

Humor April 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q2.htm#Humor0417.htm

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

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