Tidbits on February 15, 2018
Bob Jensen at Trinity University

Set 10 of My Favorite Snow Pictures --- What's Eating All My Cranberries?


Tidbits on February 15, 2018
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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

Stanford University Video:  How to Get Over Anxiety About Public Speaking ---

13 Must-See Moments in the Olympics' Starting Ceremony ---

"The Artist Project” Reveals What 127 Influential Artists See When They Look at Art: An Acclaimed Video Series from The Metropolitan Museum of Art ---

The History Channel:  How the Nazis Tried to Cover Up Their Crimes at Auschwitz ---

The Mercury Theatre on the Air (radio history) --- www.mercurytheatre.info

Funny Historic Super Bowl Commercials ---

Most Unforgettable Superbowl Commercials Over the Years ---

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

NASA Puts 400+ Historic Experimental Flight Videos on YouTube ---

SpanglerScienceTV ---  www.youtube.com/user/SpanglerScienceTV

Research in Action Podcast --- http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/research/podcast/

Daily Nous: Philosophy Comics --- http://dailynous.com/daily-nous-philosophy-comics

The Center for Cartoon Studies --- http://www.cartoonstudies.org/

British Library:  Untold Lives Blog --- http://blogs.bl.uk/untoldlives/

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 

The Global Jukebox (music of many cultures) --- https://theglobaljukebox.org/

A List of Country Songs About Taxes --- http://www.citypages.com/music/ten-country-songs-for-tax-day-6621041
Download at YouTube --- https://www.youtube.com/

H.P. Lovecraft’s Poem “Nemesis” Gets Unexpectedly Sung to the Tune of Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” ---
http://www.openculture.com/2018/01/h-p-lovecrafts-poem-nemesis-gets-unexpectedly-sung-to-the-tune-of-billy-joels-piano-man.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+OpenCulture+%28Open+Culture%29 http://www.openculture.com/2018/02/the-artist-project-reveals-what-127-artists-see-when-they-look-at-art.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+OpenCulture+%28Open+Culture%29

Hear a 65-Hour, Chronological Playlist of Miles Davis’ Revolutionary Jazz Albums ---

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

KWPQ Springfield (Blues & Jazz) --- http://www.kwpq.org/
Pandora --- 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

Astronomers have recorded telescope footage of Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster flying through deep space ---

NASA Recorded the Farthest-Ever Pictures Taken in Space ---

Free: Download 10,000+ Master Drawings from The Morgan Library & Museum’s Online Collection ---

Rossetti Archive (Art and Poetry) --- www.rossettiarchive.org

Microsculpture --- http://microsculpture.net/microsculpture.html

Behold the Beautiful Pages from a Medieval Monk’s Sketchbook: A Window Into How Illuminated Manuscripts Were Made (1494) ---

Virginia Woolf’s Personal Photo Album Digitized & Put Online by Harvard: See Candid Snapshots of Woolf, Her Family, and Friends from the Bloomsbury Group ---

The World in Ten Blocks (ten blocks in Toronto) --- http://theworldintenblocks.com/

Harry Ransom Center: Movie Poster Collection --- https://hrc.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/p15878coll84

You Must Remember This (film stars and other celebrities of the past) --- www.youmustrememberthispodcast.com

Art of the Menu (restaurant art) --- www.underconsideration.com/artofthemenu

DPLA: Two Hundred Years on the Erie Canal --- https://dp.la/exhibitions/exhibits/show/erie-canal

Ancient Priestess' 4,400-Year-Old Tomb Is Discovered in Egypt ---

Pre-Raphaelite Sisterhood (medieval art) --- http://preraphaelitesisterhood.com/

Fish illustrations from Game Birds and Fishes of North America ---

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

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

Rossetti Archive (Art and Poetry) --- www.rossettiarchive.org

The New Yorker: The Lost Giant of American Literature (William Melvin Kelley (1937 - 2017)) --- www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/01/29/the-lost-giant-of-american-literature

The Willa Cather Archive --- http://cather.unl.edu/ 

Complete Letters of Willa Cather --- https://cather.unl.edu/letters/

W.E.B. DuBois Papers 1877-1963 (civil rights activist and poet) --- http://credo.library.umass.edu/view/collection/mums312

H.P. Lovecraft’s Poem “Nemesis” Gets Unexpectedly Sung to the Tune of Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” ---

LitMed: Literature Arts Medicine Database --- http://medhum.med.nyu.edu/?action=new

Read the Poignant Letter Sent to Anne Frank by George Whitman, Owner of Paris’ Famed Shakespeare & Co Bookshop (1960): “If I Sent This Letter to the Post Office It Would No Longer Reach You” ---

1,600 Occult Books Now Digitized & Put Online, Thanks to the Ritman Library and Da Vinci Code Author Dan Brown ---

British Library:  Untold Lives Blog --- http://blogs.bl.uk/untoldlives/

Literary Witches: An Illustrated Celebration of Trailblazing Women Writers Who Have Enchanted and Transformed the World ---

What William James Got Right About Consciousness ---

A Classical Dictionary of Vulgar Tongue (1788) ---

Plagiarism Software Unveils a New Source for 11 of Shakespeare’s Plays
Shakespeare leaned heavily on George North, a minor figure in the court of Queen Elizabeth.

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 February 15, 2018

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

Strange and Unexpected Things Sometimes Happen When You Have Web Pages

February 1, 2018 message from Karolin Lohmus

Dear Bob,

My name is Karolin Lohmus.

I have translated your page into Estonian language - 


Translation you can find at my personal blog here - 


If it will be not difficult for you please add a note about my translation.

Thank you and all the best.

Video:  Tax Act (H&R Block) versus Turbo Tax (Intuit) for Filling Out Your Tax Forms ---

Jensen Comment
This is anecdotal and not full research on this issue. It's also a video so it takes a little more time to go through the complete "article."
This video suggests Tax Act is easier to use, but it seems somewhat fair on good and bad features.

It criticizes Turbo Tax for aggressiveness in frequently trying to push you into buying upgrades.

In the past I've sometimes used Tax Act and sometimes Turbo Tax. I did not notice a whole lot of difference except in 2015 when Turbo Tax removed Schedules D&E preparation from their Deluxe version without telling anybody. It made me really, really mad after completing half my return to get a message that if I wanted to finish my return in Turbo Tax I would have to upgrade --- thereby holding my return ransom unless I sent in another $30 to finish the return. In 2016 Turbo Tax put Schedule D & E preparation back into the Deluxe version. Then for 2017 returns they did it again --- making me really, really hate Turbo Tax once again.

For my 2017 return I'm happily using Tax Act.

Sneaky:  TurboTax Does It Again With Deceptive Marketing

Schedules D and E --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IRS_tax_forms#Schedule_D

Note that I wrote the following a few weeks back. Prices at Amazon may have changed slightly.

TurboTax Deluxe 2017 ($39.86 disc at Amazon) supposedly did it again by sneakily not fully supporting Schedules D & E according to the following comments on Amazon
For some reason the download version is $10 higher in price from Amazon, which does not make much sense to me. I prefer to buy the disc and store it with my tax records each year. You can always download any updates for free after you install the disc.
One reviewer at Amazon says he got a $10 credit by complaining about this to Amazon.
You can get the download version for $39.99 directly from Intuit.

Here's an important comment on Amazon:

Intuit's TurboTax did it again.
They dropped the schedule D from the Deluxe version which makes that version useless to those of us that have investments. The Deluxe version handled investments in the 2016 version, but they excluded it this year. The manufacturer is short changing buyers again!!! Avoid them.

Another Amazon reviewer writes the following:

I had an iMessage conversation with a Turbotax representative regarding the Sch. D and E issue. Their response was that while the forms are on the Deluxe version, you have to fill out each form individually as Deluxe doesn't support the interview process. Additionally, and more importantly, filling out the forms individually prevents you from e-filing your return."

The bottom line is that you if you have Schedule D investments and want TurboTax you should move up to at least TurboTax Premium ($52) if you want to choose TurboTax.
For some reason the download is $69.86 from Amazon as opposed to $52 for the disc, which does not make much sense to me.  I prefer to buy the disc and store it with my tax records each year.

The H&R Block TaxCut Premium Amazon price is $44.99 to download so it's cheaper than the $69.86 download version of TurboTax.
For some reason the disc version of Premium TaxCut is not available this morning from Amazon.
The price is $55 (plus shipping) from Walmart online for the TaxCut Premium disc version ---
Interestingly, in our nearby Walmart the H&R Block TaxCut discs (Basic versus Deluxe versus Premium) are available on the shelves but none of the TurboTax products are available onsite, at least not yet.

The H&R TaxCut option is $34.97 (plus shipping) on disc from Walmart online ---
Interestingly, the Deluxe version of TaxCut will do Schedule D investments whereas TurboTax Deluxe will not do Schedule D investments.
If you have rental properties, however, it's best to move up to the Premium version of TaxCut.

Before buying TaxCut make note the product comparisons at

In past years I've alternated between TurboTax and H&R Block TaxCut and found them to be equally easy to use and equally accurate. Both will read each other's returns.

I protest the renewed deceptive marketing practices of TurboTax. Note how the lack of Schedule D preparation for investments is not mentioned at
Given the 2015 uproar when Schedule D preparation was dropped from TurboTax Deluxe and its inclusion in 2016, I'm amazed that TurboTax has once again turned to sneaky marketing for the 2017 version of TurboTax Deluxe.

Stanford University Video:  How to Get Over Anxiety About Public Speaking ---

Sexual Assault:  Innocent After Proven Guilty
Student Accused of Sexual Assault Wins Big in Court ---

A U.S. magistrate judge has recommended that a student accused of sexual assault at James Madison University be awarded nearly $850,000 after he successfully sued the institution.

The student, called John Doe in court filings, sued the university in 2015 after he was found responsible for sexual assault.

Federal appeals court rules in favor of Miami University student who allegedly committed sexual assault ---

Shopping Guide for Thrill Seekers

The Atlantic:  “Anyone who pays for more than half of their stuff in self checkout is a total moron” ---

Amazon's Checkout-Free Store Makes Shopping Feel Like Shoplifting ---

Ten Trending Gadgets from Amazon ---

Even Amazon is surprised by how much people love Alexa ---

Financial Times:  2018 Global Ranking of MBA Programs ---

Bob Jensen's threads on rankings controversies ---

The Largest Irrigated Farm in the USA
His 15 million trees in the San Joaquin Valley consume more than 400,000 acre-feet of water a year. The city of Los Angeles, by comparison, consumes 587,000 acre-feet ---


. . .

The aquifer, a sea of water beneath the clay that dates back centuries, isn’t bottomless. It can be squeezed only so much. As the growers punch more holes into the ground looking for a vanishing resource, the earth is sinking. The choices for the Kern farmer now come down to two: He can reach deep into his pocket and buy high-priced water from an irrigation district with surplus supplies. Or he can devise a scheme to steal water from a neighbor up the road. I now hear whispers of water belonging to farmers two counties away being pumped out of the ground and hijacked in the dead of night to irrigate the nuts of Lost Hills.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
North of Sacramento our son's in-laws own 5,000 acres of primarily rice land (with some tomatoes and safflower produce). In the darkest time of the recent draught California taxpayers paid these rice and vegetable farmers to not grow crops in order to conserve precious water for nut and fruit tree farmers, because it takes decades to restore dead nut and fruit orchards. The strategy worked when there was almost no snow melt in the Sierra Mountains that supply much of the water for the farm irrigation canals. Now that there is once again heavy snow melt all the farms along the canals are back in business. But the deep water below that sustained the nut and fruit orchards has not been restored to a point where there's not great worry about snow melt droughts in the future.

Irrigation farming that requires ever-deeper wells is a classic social choice problem knowing that underground aquifers, like the great Ogallala Aquifer in the Midwest, are going dry when there's a giant agriculture industry that will also go dry soon afterwards without other sources of irrigation water. This is one of the great social choice problems when an essential resource like water is underpriced in markets. Forced higher prices would make consumers pay more to save an essential resource. For example, perhaps nut growers in the San Joaquin Valley and grain farmers in the Midwest should be severely taxed in order to invest more capital in alternative sources of water like desalinization and/or crops that require much less irrigation water. Or maybe irrigation farmers should be forced out of business before their aquifers run dry!

Ogallala Aquifer --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ogallala_Aquifer

Officials at the University of Wisconsin at Madison announced a plan to cover tuition and fees for Wisconsin students in families with annual incomes below the state median, which is $56,000 ---

Plagiarism Software Unveils a New Source for 11 of Shakespeare’s Plays
leaned heavily on George North, a minor figure in the court of Queen Elizabeth ---

Bob Jensen's threads on plagiarism among celebrities ---

Science’s pirate queen:  Alexandra Elbakyan is plundering the academic publishing establishment ---

What William James Got Right About Consciousness ---

A new one-volume book offers an updated (corrective) history of the rise and fall of the Third Reich ---

Online Western Governors University connects mentors to students with surprising success ---

Close relationships with professors or other mentors can make a big difference for students. Having a mentor in college is linked to academic success, and even predicts well-being later in life. At the most basic level, mentorship requires interaction. So small, residential colleges might imagine that their low student-to-faculty ratios and well-trafficked common areas give them an edge in fostering those important relationships.

But research from the Gallup-Purdue Index, which has conducted national polling and examined alumni outcomes for more than 100 colleges, suggests otherwise. Institution type didn’t correlate with the share of recent alumni who strongly agreed they’d had a mentor.

In fact, the college that performed best on this measure was Western Governors University, which enrolls more than 67,000 undergraduates, all of them online. Sixty-nine percent of the university’s recent graduates indicated they’d had a mentor in college — more than double the share of young alumni nationally, according to Gallup polling.

Proponents of mentorship take pains to distinguish it from advising. Mentorship, they say, is relational, while advising is transactional. Still, it’s worth remembering that many colleges wrestle with the best way to provide even transactional support. At some colleges, advising is the work of faculty members; at others, designated professionals. Which approach works best is the subject of continued debate.

Either way, some students never meet with an adviser at all, and many others have only quick, superficial conversations about meeting their degree requirements. And while some colleges dig into student data to intervene proactively when students hit an obstacle, that has yet to become common practice.

Western Governors’ success suggests that mentorship — which Gallup defines as having someone who "encouraged me to pursue my goals and dreams" — can be done at scale.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on distance education ---

The Grinch Who Stole the Olympics
From a MIT newsletter on February 13, 2018

The Olympics was hit by all-new destructive malware

Newly identified Olympic Destroyer software is ravaging systems in Pyeongchang.
The news: Following a spate of hacks, Cisco found malware at the Olympics that is designed for destruction. It deletes backups and boot files to brick computers.
Damage so far: The malware has briefly taken down the Pyeongchang Olympics website, shut down wi-fi networks, and grounded drones. It could strike again.
Who’s behind it: Unclear. Researchers at Crowdstrike suggest Russia; those at Intexer say China. Whoever it is, they deemed the attacks worthy of new malware.

A Physics Journal Explains Why Owning an Electric Car Won't Save You Money (a least not in current times)

Why not?
See what physicists say?

What about leasing rather than owning?
Usually dealers do not intend to lose money when their cars are leased rather than purchased.
Expected losses are factored into lease payments such that lessees ultimately bear expected value losses.
Was leasing a Yugo ever a better deal than purchasing a Yugo?

Actually leasing a car was not a particularly good deal until the economic crash of 2006 when the Fed lowered dealer interest rates to almost zero
Now leasing is a better deal than it used to be for low-mileage drivers and is more convenient because it avoids the hassle of selling your old car
But leasing is not usually cheaper if you maintain your car beautifully and work eventually selling/trading it for a top price
Owning is much better if you're that proverbial old lady who garaged the car and only drove it to church on occasional Sunday mornings

Among the 17.2 million car and truck sales were 105,963 sales of electric vehicles in 2017, up from 2016 sales of 75,815 vehicles (mostly sedans) ---
Virtually all automobile manufacturers, however, are betting heavily on an explosion in electric vehicle sales in the next decade. This includes Ford's announced $11 billion investment in 2018.
The jury is still out regarding future values of used electric cars and costs of replacement batteries.

Tesla is working to secure lithium from Chile’s largest producer ---
Jensen Comment
The lithium in nearby Nevada is either too little in amount or too costly to extract or too environmentally dangerous to extract --- or all of the above.

The Guardian:  Tesla's new batteries may be harder on the environment than you think --- 

How to Mislead With Statistics
A Physics Journal Suggests Scientist Sampling Bias Might be Distorting View of Upheaval Due to Global Warming ---

Critics have argued that the evidence of an association between climate change and conflict is flawed because the research relies on a dependent variable sampling strategy. Similarly, it has been hypothesized that convenience of access biases the sample of cases studied (the 'streetlight effect'). This also gives rise to claims that the climate–conflict literature stigmatizes some places as being more 'naturally' violent. Yet there has been no proof of such sampling patterns. Here we test whether climate–conflict research is based on such a biased sample through a systematic review of the literature. We demonstrate that research on climate change and violent conflict suffers from a streetlight effect. Further, studies which focus on a small number of cases in particular are strongly informed by cases where there has been conflict, do not sample on the independent variables (climate impact or risk), and hence tend to find some association between these two variables. These biases mean that research on climate change and conflict primarily focuses on a few accessible regions, overstates the links between both phenomena and cannot explain peaceful outcomes from climate change. This could result in maladaptive responses in those places that are stigmatized as being inherently more prone to climate-induced violence.

How to Mislead With Statistics
From a Chronicle of Higher Education Newsletter on February 14, 2018

A new report says that students who attend for-profit colleges are outperformed on earnings and employment by other students in nearly every category, and that many for-profit-college students would be better off not attending college at all.

Jensen Comment
One of our sons went deeply in debt to get a business degree from a for-profit university and is now saddled with repaying his student loans. He was a diesel mechanic for Caterpillar before he started the online program and cannot find a white collar job that pays better than his blue collar job. He's still a diesel mechanic with Caterpillar.

His experience provides clues on why the above report may be misleading.
Firstly, many folks who attend for-profit colleges have some blue collar skills that don't pay all that bad, and it's a myth that those graduates tend to do better with white collar opportunities after graduating from college. Studies indicating that going to college pays off are often comparing only those students who got white collar jobs with blue collar workers. Those studies also fail to mention that many college graduates (including those like our son) could not find white collar jobs or they had to move to very high cost living areas to find white collar work after earning college diplomas.

Also many graduates from for-profit colleges have other income such as those who served in the military for 20+ years after high school receive lifetime pensions and health care benefits during and after graduation from a for-profit university. I don't think the above study partitioned "income" into components that excluded "earnings" from pensions and investments. 

Also there's a problem of defining "better off" with a college degree only in terms of annual monetary earnings. We must always remind the public that being "better off" from education also entails being "better off" in terms of a lot of intangibles in life. Some graduates better  appreciate poetry or reading blogs of college professors. Many folks (think stay-at-home parents) want to take college courses for reasons other than finding a job.

Given the many new online distance education alternatives from top non-profit colleges and universities plus the thousands of free MOOCs from the most prestigious universities in the world, I'm no longer an advocate of for-profit certificate and degree alternatives except in cases where for-profit colleges have unique programs not available elsewhere ---

Each state awards a gold medal to the highest scoring CPA exam taker in that state. I will never forget the year that a gold medal winner took only for-profit correspondence courses back in the days before there were computers and an Internet. Her only higher education opportunities in the rural part of the world where she lived were to take correspondence courses.

Also for-profit colleges never reject any applicants, and on occasion there may be a college applicant with such lousy credentials that the for-profit college is the only alternative for a college degree. I did not research this, but I'm certain there are many success stories out there about "dummies" who became scholars in this manner. I know a successful nurse (now retired) who was rejected by the Eastern Maine Medical Center nursing school in Bangor. She then went to the local for-profit nursing program, and then proceeded into a fine career in the EMMC where she was initially rejected for nursing school.

Lastly, there's a problem with attributing "success" to where you got your college diploma 10 years earlier. Too many factors (including luck) intervene between college graduation and the executive suite. Less than 25% of the hires in international CPA firms ultimately become partners in those firms. I sometimes scan the new partner listings of large CPA firms with an eye on where they went to college. Prestige of an alma mater is usually a poor predictor of being admitted to the partnership, although it is somewhat of a factor in getting that first-job in an international CPA firm. There are just too many other intervening variables over the years in the firm that affect becoming a partner.

The case for providing an exceptional experience for international students ---

. . .

Government agencies (in New Zealand) reacted to these issues with a robust response and this work is ongoing. The New Zealand Qualifications Authority has taken strong enforcement action against education providers with quality issues. The Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students has been strengthened, and education providers are now also responsible for the quality of the agents they work with. There are tighter requirements around English language testing. Penalties against employers who fail to meet their employment obligations have also been increased.

A  wide range of representatives from education, police and social agencies including New Zealand’s Human Rights Commission came together to consider how best to ensure every international student who chooses to study in New Zealand has a world-class experience, feels included and knows where to go for support should they need it.

This led to the creation of the New Zealand Student Wellbeing Strategy for international students. The strategy has four themes: Economic Wellbeing, Quality Education, Health and Wellbeing, and Inclusion. The aim is that international students in New Zealand have adequate funds to live and study, receive quality education and qualifications, are safe and well, and feel welcome, valued and socially connected.

Education New Zealand (ENZ) has been implementing key elements of the Student Wellbeing Strategy, and championing the international student experience nationally. This has included substantial research projects to identify gaps and investment priorities, stakeholder engagement, and the identification and support of best practice programmes that improve the quality of the experience for international students. There is also an associated contestable fund, administered by the Ministry of Education, available for providers and regions to initiate programmes which will enhance the student experience. The fund will also support not-for-profit community organisations providing cultural and social services for international students.

Given students’ experiences start well before they even get on a plane – with education agents, counsellors or online application processes playing an important role – ENZ is reviewing and refining our engagement with education agents and counsellors, including ensuring we supply them with high-quality, up-to-date, accurate information.

We’re also focused on attracting more students to our regions. Our largest city, Auckland, has historically been the preferred option for international students, but we have many more cities and towns with valuable international education offerings. Smaller cities can also be a better match for some students’ needs. Through our Regional Partnership Programme, we have been working across New Zealand to help the regions promote their unique educational experiences to prospective students.  At the same time, we are looking at programmes to support local communities and international students to enjoy all the social and cultural benefits during their stay.

We are sharing personal stories and case studies to help New Zealanders understand the social, cultural and economic benefits that international students bring to their campuses and communities, transforming them into international student advocates.

Given our geographical distance, Kiwis have always understood the need to be globally connected.  The spirit of manaakitangi is what makes a small nation in the Pacific stand out on the global stage.  I believe New Zealand is an example of what can be achieved when an open and coordinated response is launched that puts the student experience at the forefront. I look forward to seeing what we achieve as we continue this journey.

We want students to remember their time in New Zealand as having been transformative, both educationally and personally, giving them qualifications and experience that will put the world at their feet. To study abroad in any country is a brave decision, and we are committed to supporting those who choose to study in New Zealand, providing them with the best possible experience

Jensen Comment
We have a grandson majoring in nursing at the University of Southern Maine. He just returned from three-month study abroad program in New Zealand (where he loved it so much he stayed for another three months). He tells us that this was an experience of a lifetime for him (I think he will go back to New Zealand to live if an opportunity arises). There's so much to be learned beyond the "book learning" in study abroad programs, although care should be taken to make sure that the "book learning" part is of high quality. In the USA I fear that some international visitors are lured in by low quality academic programs, which is why it's so important when coming to study in the USA to investigate the academic quality of the program before boarding an airplane.

IRS Confessions

Day 1722, The IRS Apologizes for Targeting Tea Party Group (but lets Lois Lerner's personally off the hook) ---
Read the comments --- we still don't have evidence of Obama's White House staff involvement

The IRS Scandal, Day 1730: Department Of Justice Settles Last Targeting Case; IRS Apologizes For Delaying Pro-Israel Group's Application For Tax Exempt Status For Seven Years ---

The IRS Scandal, Day 1735: The En, d Of IRS Political Targeting?
Jensen Comment
Let's hope this is the beginning of more sensible bipartisan funding of the IRS in the 21st Century

Politico:  Europe's Health Care Systems on Life Support
Jensen Comment
Jensen Comment
This article dates back to 2016, but I've seen nothing to say that things have changed in Europe while matters are growing worse in the USA.
Especially note the world map on our aging population 2015-2050
Can soylent green be far off?

Doctors have been threatening massive strikes in Britain to protest pay and conditions. Italian regions are going bankrupt trying to fund medicines. Drugmakers are pulling diabetes drugs from Germany, blaming government-set prices that don’t let them recoup their investment.

Highly specialized medicines for diseases like cancer are entering the market at sky-high prices, forcing governments to choose between the need to treat their citizens and the need to spend wisely. And in many countries, people head straight to the hospital when they’re feeling sick, which makes treating patients especially expensive.

Health spending flattened after the 2008 economic crisis, but it’s expected to rise from 6 percent to 14 percent of GDP in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries within decades if something isn’t done to stem the rise, according to the rich nations’ think tank.

At the same time, Europe’s population is only getting older, straining an already stretched-thin system. Thirty percent or more of nearly the entire European region’s population will be over 60 by 2050, up from between 10 percent and under 30 percent in 2015, according to recent WHO data.

The graying of Europe alone may push up public spending on health and long-term care in the EU by as much as 10 percent of GDP by 2060, the Commission has said.

But state-funded health care systems “can survive with the right policies,” said Chris James, economist and health policy analyst at the OECD.

This includes moves towards more efficiency in delivering health care and a focus on spending only on measures with proven results, according to health officials, economists and drugmakers alike.

Patients suffering from multiple chronic diseases “need a lifelong relation[ship] with the health care system and they have problems that are much more costly than other patient groups,” Sweden’s Health Minister Gabriel Wikström said. The health care system has to stop treating one disease at a time and be more integrated so it can focus on patients who often suffer from multiple diseases at once, Wikström added. Money, money

European health systems tend to fall into one of two categories: They are funded either by general tax revenues or through payroll contributions. Either way, the money coming in fluctuates with economic cycles. That fluctuation has been complicated by austerity measures in some countries following the recent financial crisis.

“It is wrong to have a debate from the perspective that economic crisis and difficulties make it harder to fund health care because you should really see health care services as an investment in human capital,” Wikström said.

In recent years, countries have tried to influence behavior and make an extra buck by introducing so-called sin taxes on products including sweets and alcohol. Hungary, the U.K. and Latvia are part of the trend.

The idea takes aim at the 86 percent of deaths in Europe from chronic diseases often caused by unhealthy behavior: smoking, drinking, a poor diet and lack of physical activity, according to WHO data.

“The real effect on health [disease prevention] is not clear, and the potential to raise more funding is limited,” said Rita Baeten, senior policy analyst at the European Social Observatory, a think tank.

Miklós Szócska, a former Hungarian health minister who introduced a tax on soft and energy drinks, sweetened products and salty snacks in 2011, countered with his country’s experience. The tax in Hungary added between €0.02 cents and €1.6 per kilogram or liter of salty snacks and sugary drinks and raised almost €70 million in 2012, the year after it was introduced.

“We taxed the stuff that makes you unhealthy and we used the resources generated from it to increase the salaries of doctors,” he said.

Former Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron surprised many with his proposal to tax soft drinks after initially ruling out a levy as part of a strategy to combat obesity.

Traditional prevention may be the simplest but perhaps hardest way to cut costs. Unlike sin taxes, it may be the hardest to quantify and lacks powerful lobbyists, so it’s vulnerable to the budget ax.

“Whenever countries have a shortfall in funds – look at the financial crisis from 2008 – the first thing that gets cut is health promotion and prevention,” the OECD’s James said.

The move is shortsighted, he said, as it will result in bigger health care costs down the road.

The privatization route

European systems generally draw from taxes on employment or general tax revenues to finance health care. In the Netherlands and Switzerland, health systems are financed from a mix of compulsory public and heavily regulated private insurance.

It doesn’t make the system cheaper for the public, according to James.

And private solutions are unlikely to emerge as a dominant form in Europe, said Pedro Pita Barros, a professor of economics at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa in Portugal and member of the European Commission’s expert panel on effective ways of investing in health.

Continued in article

Bill Gates is an avid reader
Bill Gates Names His New Favorite Book of All Time: A Quick Introduction to Steven Pinker’s Enlightenment Now  ---

MIT:  Best Tech Books of 2017 ---

EDUCAUSE: 2017 Student and Faculty Technology Research Studies ---

Longreads Best of 2017: Science, Technology and Business Writing ---

Bob Jensen's threads on education technology ---

The Old Farmer's Almanac:  The Surprising Success of America’s Oldest Living Magazine ---

High School Diploma Mills
The D.C. Public School Attendance Scandal: Where's the Outrage?

FBI Investigating D.D. Public Schools ---
Also see

Political Correctness in Poland
Historians Blast Polish Law on Nazi-Era Scholarship ---

The American Historical Association has condemned a new law in Poland that makes it a crime to write or speak "publicly and contrary to the facts, that the Polish Nation or the Republic of Poland is responsible or co-responsible for Nazi crimes committed by the Third Reich." Many prominent scholars have written over the years that while some Polish citizens and leaders fought the Nazis, others helped them. The AHA has already has expressed concern to the Polish government about Jan T. Gross, a professor of history at Princeton University, who was facing a libel investigation from Polish authorities for publishing historical accounts of Poles killing Jews during World War II. The new statement from the AHA quotes from a letter sent about the Gross case, which noted the movement to enact the legislation that has now become law.


"We feel strongly that this law will allow police and judicial authorities to overrule the judgments of trained historians, and that it will threaten the ability of historians to conduct impartial research that might reveal facts that these authorities find uncomfortable," the letter said. "No nation’s past is free of blemishes, and Poland will do itself no favors in the eye of world opinion by passing such a restrictive and prejudicial piece of legislation."

How 2 powerful women beat gender pay gaps to become the president of Salesforce and the CEO of Deloitte Consulting ---

Bob Jensen's threads on the history of women in the professions ---

Notre Dame Appeals for More Leniency Regarding Academic Fraud
Notre Dame President Blasts NCAA ---

The University of Notre Dame’s president delivered an unusually harsh rebuke of the National Collegiate Athletic Association after it denied the institution’s appeal on an academic fraud case.

The NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions found that a Notre Dame athletics trainer had helped football players cheat, and ordered 21 of the program’s victories from the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons vacated.

On Tuesday, the NCAA’s Infractions Appeal Committee rejected the university’s appeal, prompting a lengthy statement from the university's president, the Reverend John I. Jenkins.

Jenkins refers to the NCAA’s decision as a “dangerous precedent” that “turns the seminal concept of academic autonomy on its head.”

“We believe strongly that a university should make decisions core to its academic mission without having to factor in the possible consequences of an athletic association,” Jenkins said in his statement. “The NCAA has not chosen to ignore academic autonomy; it has instead perverted it by divorcing it from its logical and necessary connection to the underlying educational purpose.”

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on the endless scandals regarding college athletics ---
Jensen Comment
Notre Dame thinks it got it tough, but the NCAA did almost nothing regarding fake courses and grade changing of athletes for nearly 20 years at the University of North Carolina. Maybe the NCAA is trying to change its sorry image of wink wink punishments.

New York governor Andrew Cuomo has made huge claims and drawn sharp criticism with his higher ed policies. The numbers show neither his biggest boasts nor his angriest detractors are entirely correct ---

What if someone is rude?
Jensen Comment
I'm not sure about the UK, but in the USA the rude woman almost certainly would sue.

Teaching the Art of Reading in the Digital Era ---

Jensen Comment
For me the art of close reading is writing --- I take notes when I want to remember what I read. Many of you are used to reading portions of my notes in my blogs.

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

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

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

MIT Newsletter on February 12, 2018 
Cryptojacking has hit government websites

Surreptitious mining of cryptocurrency by hackers is spreading very, very fast.
The news:
Over 4,000 websites, including those of the US Federal Judiciary and the UK National Health Service, have been secretly mining digital coins for crooks.
How it worked: Hackers injected malware into a widely used plugin, Browsealoud. Website visitors then involuntarily gave up their computing power to the hackers.
Why it matters:
Cryptojacking is becoming one of the world’s biggest cyberthreats. This news shows how easy it is for crooks to spread the trick with a single hack.A

AICPA:  Blockchain was made to solve one problem and here's what it is ---
Also see

Antonio Villas-Boas:  I've started to mine cryptocurrency, and it's surprisingly easy — but I'm still 8 months away from breaking even ---

What Actually Is Bitcoin? Princeton’s Free Course “Bitcoin and Currency Technologies” Provides Much-Needed Answers ---

Nobel economist Stiglitz sees no legal functions for bitcoin: 'We have a good medium of exchange called the dollar' ---

Sweden could be the first economy to introduce its own cryptocurrency, called the e-krona ---
A reader pointed out that since e-krona will be subject to krona regulations in general it's not a true cryptocurrency

Warren Buffett Just Ripped Cripto Currency to Shreds ---

Scams & stupidities around 'blockchain stocks' ---

The Bitcoin Paradox ---

Tax avoidance is causing a surge in bitcoin loans ---

You can now rent a Kodak-branded bitcoin-mining rig — but you'll have to hand over half of the profits you make ---
Why wasn't it called Kodak's Bitcoin Brownie?

A guide to paying taxes on cryptocurrency (e.g. bitcoin) profit ---

A crypto expert explains the difference between the two largest cryptocurrencies in the world: bitcoin and Ethereum ---

Fintech --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Financial_technology
Fintech could be bigger than ATMs, PayPal, and Bitcoin combined

New evidence reportedly puts North Korean hackers behind a list of high-stakes bitcoin heists ---

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

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

From a MIT newsletter on February 1, 2018
The plunder of more than $500 million worth of digital coins from the Japanese cryptocurrency

The plunder of more than $500 million worth of digital coins from the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck last week has added to a growing perception that cryptocurrencies are particularly vulnerable to hackers.

It’s an expensive reminder that like many things in the cryptocurrency world, security technologies—and the norms, best practices, and rules for using them—are still emerging. Not least because of its enormous size, the Coincheck hack could go down as a seminal moment in that process.

First, hackers laid bare the fact that Coincheck had opted not to implement some basic security measures. The company’s executives told news reporters that the stolen coins had been stored in an internet-connected “hot” wallet. It’s far more secure to keep funds offline, in “cold” storage—often hardware specially designed for the task. Many exchanges already claim in their marketing material that they hold the vast majority of their users’ funds offline. Going forward, this will presumably become standard practice.

With that taken care of, there’s a more weighty question on the table. Every public cryptocurrency address is associated with a private key; without it, money can’t be moved from that address. If someone does acquire your private key, though, they can send your money away. That’s what happened in the Coincheck heist. So, how do we make the private cryptographic keys owners need to access their coins more secure?

One answer, known as a multisignature address, is conceptually simple: a “multisig” requires more than one cryptographic key in order execute a transaction. It’s a bit like the multi-factor authentication process you may use to access your email account. Business partners can use multisig technology to, for example, create a wallet that requires each of them to sign off on transactions. That would make it substantially more difficult for hackers to access funds.

Of course, multisig is not a silver bullet. In 2016, for example, hackers defeated a multisig system to steal $65 million from Bitfinex, one of the world’s largest exchanges. How exactly the perpetrators managed the feat isn’t clear, but
it’s possible there was a flaw in the specific implementation.

Should financial regulators require exchanges to use multisig technology to secure any funds they keep in a hot wallet? Japanese officials are conducting an emergency review of the security of the country’s exchanges, and that might be a measure they consider.

Criminals in Europe are laundering $5.5 billion of illegal cash through cryptocurrency, according to Europol ---

Jensen Comment
A billion here, a billion there --- pretty soon were talking about real money! These cryptocurrency scams boggle my mind.
I'm glad I'm not an accountant assigned to investigate/audit cryptocurrency frauds.

Scotch Whisky --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scotch_whisky

Why you should add a splash of water when sipping scotch

I often watch Rick Steves' European travel documentaries on PBS ---

During his show in Edinburgh  an expert on scotch whisky noted the following:
You should not drink scotch without adding a bit of water to bring out the rich wooden-cask aroma even though water was initially added to bring the scotch up to its desired distillation strength. This is not something you need to do with fine wines.

With rum I always found it better to add a bit of coke and lime juice (that Cuba Libre) ---

How to Mislead With Rankings
Jobs With the Most (and Least) Job Security

Jensen Comment
This is an illustration of selection bias in research. In this case the most secure jobs in the USA were left out of consideration.

Probably the most secure job in the USA is being a tenured K-12 school teacher where unions and lawyers often protect pedophiles and scammers. In large urban cities like New York and LA there are special rooms where former teachers suspected of pedophilia or other inappropriate behavior go year-in and year-out and do nothing required for their full-time pay and benefits. They can sleep all day or write books or just sit and watch porn until it's time to go home. Nobody much cares how tardy they are when showing up for "work."

The second-most secure job is a civil service job in the Federal government where it's rare to fire bad employee (say one who only shows up for work 10% of the time), and then everything is done to hire a fired employee back into the system. Recently the IRS actually fired over 200 employees for frauds, but then most of those fired employees were sneakily hired back.

Tenured college faculty members can be fired for moral turpitude, but their tenure more often than not protects them from being fired for incompetence and negligence. Those that are forced out of the system usually get such generous buy-out packages that they leave happy as larks when leaving campus for the last time.

There also is some question about how to define job "security." You may be assured of keeping your job but find yourself being reassigned to Panama or Venezuela. Less dramatically you may be re-assigned just far enough away to make your life very uncomfortable. At the moment we have two postal workers in a nearby town of Franconia about two miles down the hill from our cottage. Both are extremely hard workers. They were re-assigned to the Franconia Post Office from separate towns over an hour away. They now face the choice of having to sell their homes and relocate their families or commute on our often wintry deer/moose filled mountain roads in the dark of morning and the dark of winter evenings. Both are now still commuting over an hour each way in part because just after moving to Franconia they might find themselves re-assigned in these unstable days of working for the Post Office (where post offices are increasingly being closed down to save money). I don't call this great job "security."

What to do if your hard drive failed (or is showing signs of possible failure) ---

Jensen Comment
If you think it might soon fail, back it up immediately. I keep a new hard drive on hand just for such contingencies. Of course, I also have my working hard drives backed up every day on backup drives.

I also save my Website files daily to my Websites that are about 2,000 miles away.

Frequent backup also makes you less vulnerable to a Ransomware attack. By "less vulnerable" I mean you can tell them you don't need to pay a ransom.

AICPA:  Social security benefits hacked: A cautionary tale ---

Bob Jensen's personal finance helpers ---

Home Equity Loan --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Home_equity_loan

The New Tax Law:  How Home Equity Loans Have Become a Worse Deal for Homeowners ---

Jensen Comment
In general I've preferred home equity lines of credit to reverse mortgages, but there are circumstances that might favor reverse mortgages.

Reverse Mortgage --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reverse_mortgage

Is a Reverse Mortgage Right for You or Your Parents ---

Bob Jensen's personal finance helpers ---

The unexpected role librarians are playing in Sacramento’s homeless crisis ---

State Income Tax --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_income_tax

What Americans pay in state income taxes, ranked from highest to lowest ---

California (highest)
Maine  (something to consider when longing to retire on a the long Maine coast)
Oregon (something to consider when longing to retire anywhere in Oregon)
Minnesota (something to consider if you were a 2018 Super Bowl player)
Iowa (one of the reasons I sold my Iowa farm)
New Jersey (the most taxing state in the Union if you factor in other taxes)
Vermont (where sales tax relief is possible by driving across the border to New Hampshire)
. . .

North Dakota (lowest)


Nine States with no broad-based individual income tax ----
Note the color map

Nine U.S. states do not level a broad-based individual income tax. Some of these do tax certain forms of personal income:

1.    Alaska – no individual tax but has a state corporate income tax. Like New Hampshire, Alaska has no state sales tax, but unlike New Hampshire, Alaska allows local governments to collect their own sales taxes. Alaska has an annual Permanent Fund Dividend, derived from oil revenues, for all citizens living in Alaska after one calendar year, except for some convicted of criminal offenses.

2.    Florida – no individual income tax[8] but has a 5.5% corporate income tax. The state once had a tax on "intangible personal property" held on the first day of the year (stocks, bonds, mutual funds, money market funds, etc.), but it was abolished at the start of 2007.

3.    Nevada – has no individual or corporate income tax. Nevada gets most of its revenue from sales taxes and the gambling and mining industries.

4.    Tennessee has a "Hall income tax" of 6% on income received from stocks and bonds not taxed ad valorem. The Hall income tax is reduced to 5% for tax year 2016, with legislative intent that the tax be statutorily reduced by one percent annually beginning with the first annual session of the 110th general assembly and potentially eliminated by 2022.[14][15] In 1932, the Tennessee Supreme Court struck down a broad-based individual income tax that had passed the General Assembly, in the case of Evans v. McCabe. However, a number of Attorneys General have recently opined that, if properly worded, a state income tax would be found constitutional by today's court, due to a 1971 constitutional amendment.

5.    Texas – no individual income tax, but imposes a franchise tax on corporations. In May 2007, the legislature modified the franchise tax by enacting a modified gross margin tax on certain businesses (sole proprietorships and some partnerships were automatically exempt; corporations with receipts below a certain level were also exempt as were corporations whose tax liability was also below a specified amount), which was amended in 2009 to increase the exemption level. The Texas Constitution places severe restrictions on passage of an individual income tax and the use of its proceeds.

6.    Washington – no individual tax but has a business and occupation tax (B&O) on gross receipts, applied to "almost all businesses located or doing business in Washington." It varies from 0.138% to 1.9% depending on the type of industry.

7.    Wyoming has no individual or corporate income taxes.

8.    South Dakota – no individual income tax but has a state corporate income tax on financial institutions.

9.     New Hampshire – has an Interest and Dividends Tax of 5% (excludes pension fund interest), and a Business Profits Tax of 8.5%. A Gambling Winnings Tax of 10% went into effect July 1, 2009 and was repealed May 11, 2011. New Hampshire has no sales tax

Jensen Comment
States with no sales tax like New Hampshire might tax hotel rooms and restaurant tabs. I think all states have gasoline (road use) taxes, but most (except Oregon) do not yet make electric car drivers pay road use taxes. This will be more controversial if commercial electric trucks pay no road use taxes.

States without income taxes, like New Hampshire, often have relatively high property taxes. However, property taxes are hard to compare since the vigor and frequency of real estate appraisals may vary. When I lived in Texas it seemed that the Bexar County Appraisal District re-appraised weekly whereas in Sugar Hill New Hampshire property is re-appraised every four years. In Texas, however, I found it easier to get appraisal reductions (as long as you hired lawyers with connections) relative to New Hampshire where it's next to impossible to get your value appraisals reduced.

New Jersey is ranked as the most taxing state in the union even though it is only as Rank 6 in terms of income taxes. It's at Rank 1 in terms of property tax burdens.
Three guesses as to why Massachusetts is otherwise known as Taxachusetts.
Three guesses also as to why so many Vermont residents cross over to New Hampshire for appointments with physicians and well as long stopovers at border Walmart, tire, liquor, and computer stores. Many also vote in New Hampshire with blue paintbrushes. New Hampshire does not require proof of residency in order to vote.

California is a high cost of living state in part due to impact of regulations as well as taxes. The Golden State's gasoline prices are the highest in the nation by far.
But California has Proposition 13 that locks in home appraisals (for property taxes) at relatively low values as long as you keep your home for years and years and years ---

Some cities are trying to figure out how to squeeze more money out of higher income residents. Washington State has no income tax, but the socialist mayor of Seattle is trying to impose a city income tax on the higher income folks. The bluest of blue Portland, Oregon is considering a gross revenue tax on large businesses.

I'm amazed Washington State does not tax the incomes of Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates. However, their philanthropy in Washington probably more than makes up for the income tax loss.

Physicians like to practice in Texas since due to constitutionally-limited malpractice insurance costs (and risks).

The Most (and Least) Expensive States in the USA to Own a Car (slide show) ---

Rhode Island (most expensive)

. . .

South Carolina
New Hampshire
North Dakota
Oregon (least expensive)

Jensen Comment
The article says that in addition to insurance costs, fuel prices, taxes, and registration fees it does take depreciation into account. I wonder, however, how much it factors in road salt damage in states like New Hampshire, North Dakota, and Alaska.
But road salt damage is less important to higher income people who buy or lease new cars every three years versus the poor who try to make their used car purchases last another 10 years.
Also there's a lot of variation within states that's probably ignored. For example, owning a car in New York City is enormously expensive because of garage and parking expenses, but these expenses are not so high in rural New York.

Theft risk is also factored into insurance rates, but many people do not take out theft loss coverage, especially in low theft-risk states. For example, in New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont many fewer cars (per capita) are stolen in a year than are stolen in Texas and California in a day ---
However, car repairs my be cheaper in the states with lots of car thefts because stolen parts are cheaper in the underground market.

Swiss university launches country's first-ever bachelors and masters degrees in yodeling ---
Jensen Comment
I wonder what these college degrees add in lifetime earnings for yodeling. It would seem that the top yodelers are more likely to result from talent and practice.

Veblen Good --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veblen_good

The Extraordinary Rise And Sudden Decline Of Law School Tuition: Veblen Effects In Higher Education ---

Bob Jensen's threads on the rise, fall, and rise again of USA law schools ---

The Problem With Faculty Wives Being Recognized as Co-Authors ---

Jensen Comment
Herb Miller was the leading reason I took my first accounting faculty job at Michigan State University. Herb was a visiting professor at Stanford University when I was finishing up my Ph.D. studies. His main contribution to my career at the time was to make me think professionally and not personally (at a time when I thought I wanted to be a ski bum and horse rancher).

Herb became quite wealthy after he took over Harry Finney's accounting books. After Herb took over the series known as Finney and Miller (basic, intermediate, and advanced) that became the overwhelmingly leading accounting textbooks of their day. Professor Finney was older and made little updating contribution to the Finney and Miller series at a time when new accounting principles were forthcoming from the APB and FASB. The same cannot be said for the updating contributions of Herb's lovely and very sharp wife Lenore. Lenore was an accountant who Herb always admitted to the world made extensive and high quality contributions to the series, including the end-of-chapter problems and answers. Although she was never listed as a full co-author, Herb always praised her professional contributions to these enormously popular textbooks.

Herb Miller's Accounting Hall of Fame Citation ---
Herb was quiet and low key, but his interests were quite varied. He started out in Iowa as a clarinet player in a band (back in the big band era). He soon settled into an accounting education career, but kept his interests in playing an organ in his home, sailing, and Nascar (where he became a close friend of AJ Foyt). Herb's small sail boat was named "Miller's High Life," although he mostly limited his sailing to a few hours now and then during the Michigan summers. Herb and Lenore worked hard for the Millers' noteworthy successes in life. They were both super accountants.

'Fiction is outperforming reality': how YouTube's algorithm distorts truth ---
Jensen Comment
This is an interesting article but may itself be biased more than the bias it criticizes. For example, it implies that if all political videos were removed from YouTube Hillary Clinton would've won the 2016 election. I hardly believe that the blue collar voters in swing states that swung the election for Trump spent much time watching YouTube political videos or even YouTube videos at all. In my opinion the majority of videos watched on YouTube are entertainment videos that either have no political content (think Alison Krauss) or liberally-biased (think rap stars) or are sexual in nature. This article, in my opinion, greatly overplays the interest pro-Republican YouTube videos.

I think TV commercials have much more political clout because most viewers are unwillingly and unwittingly exposed to them when they watch their favorite shows such as when they watch nightly news or late-night comedy shows. YouTube advertisements are neat in that most of them are easily clicked off before they start. People only watch political videos on YouTube out of choice, and I don't think political videos are a hot item relative to rap and pop stars and sex.

Apple And Walmart Inject New Life Into Sleepy E-Book Market ---

This past week, Walmart announced a deal to sell e-books and e-book reading devices from Kobo, a major player in the global e-book market that had all but given up on the U.S. a few years ago. And Bloomberg reported that Apple is preparing a major revamp of its iBooks e-book platform for iOS devices and Macs and that it hired a top executive away from Amazon to make it happen. The question in the minds of many who follow the American e-book market is simple: Why?

The e-book market has stalled. Back in 2013, e-books were predicted to exceed print books in sales by now. But instead, according to Nielsen data, 2013 turned out to be the peak year for e-book sales, and the market has declined slowly ever since. 2016 figures from AuthorEarnings suggest that unit sales of trade e-books (that is, the kinds of books you'd buy at a retail store, as opposed to a college textbook, medical treatise, etc.) have settled down just above 20% of overall trade book sales.

That number probably underestimates the real total somewhat; for example, it doesn't include titles published through Amazon's own imprints, which are likely to sell proportionately more as e-books than in print. But it's fair to say that e-books are not doing to books what digital has done to music, where the converse is true: physical products (including CDs) currently represent just over 20% of recorded music revenue.

Meanwhile, Amazon has cemented its dominance of the American e-book market: as of early last year, its share was 83% by unit volume, up from 74% in 2015. Apple's market share has shrunk from just above 10% in 2015 to just below it last year.

And Kobo's share is virtually nil. It is now very difficult to find a U.S. retailer that carries Kobo's e-reader devices, though one can buy their e-books online and read them on their mobile apps and PCs. Elsewhere in the world, Kobo is a strong player; for example it's second only to Amazon in its native Canada as well as in France, with about a quarter of the market in both countries.

The fact is, the U.S. e-book market has been a sleepy place over the past few years. Innovations such as monthly subscription services and "P+E bundling" (buy a print book, get the e-book version for free or at a discount) haven't caught on, mainly due to lack of publisher support because their contracts with authors limit their flexibility to do the licensing deals.

So why are Walmart and Apple taking significant steps to invest in e-books?

For Apple, it's not so much about e-books per se as it is about keeping Apple's panoply of content offerings up to date. The planned changes are mainly user experience facelifts to bring iBooks -- which will be renamed simply Books -- into line with newer services such as the latest version of the iOS App Store and Apple Music, Apple's subscription streaming service that competes with Spotify, Google Play, and others. E-books are one piece of an overall operating platform, which nowadays is expected to include a range of content services; upgrading individual services like e-books is therefore analogous to a desktop operating system improving its backup utility or anti-malware service.

The Kobo deal with Walmart is more interesting. It's actually a small part of a much bigger deal that partners the massive global brick-and-mortar footprint of Walmart with a Japanese company -- Rakuten, Kobo's owner since 2012 -- that is a global leader in e-commerce, even though it's relatively unknown in the U.S.

The partnership should take many forms in the years to come, as the companies find ways to collaborate to compete with Amazon online; but initially it has two manifestations. One of these is an online grocery service that the two companies will launch in Japan, to replace an existing service that Walmart currently operates under the Seiyu brand. Rakuten will contribute its major network of fulfillment centers to the arrangement.

The other is the deal with Kobo to sell e-books, digital audiobooks, and e-book readers in the U.S. On a basic level, this gives Kobo a simple way of re-entering the U.S. market in one step without having to build a network of retailers. Kobo had an arrangement with Borders, the bookstore chain that went bankrupt in 2011; after that, it tried to build up a network of indie bookstores, but that proved too difficult.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's neglected threads on ebooks ---

Technology Makes Amnesiacs of Us All:  And the academy only hastens our forgetting (not so says me)
by By Francis O’Gorman
Chronicle of Higher Education
January 28, 2018
Jensen Comment
I do not agree with most of this article. Technology just made us more efficient at remembering and searching for cues to our memories. Virtually everybody in higher education took notes years ago, and we still take notes of sorts these days. Some used notebooks; some used index cards; some wrote notes and page numbers in the back pages of books. Some like me maintained file folders of clippings and notes organized by topic.

The problem was that in the old days search amongst our notes was crude and inefficient. We forgot where to find things and spent wasted hours searching among our files and books. Today we use technologies to varying degrees. For nearly thirty years I've used technology to aid my memory I started out with an accumulation of nearly 250,000 IMB cards punched out in ways that could be keyword searched by a Fortran program I designed for word searches. Then came the magnetic tape; Then came floppy disks. At last hard drives arrived with ever-increasing capacities. Lastly came Websites and vastly improved browser technologies. We cannot only search among our own Websites, but we can also search the world library using Google, Wikipedia, etc.

I don't think these technology memory aids maid me an amnesiac. Rather they expanded the need for my memory to efficiently use those technology aid.

More importantly, I'm one of those people who remembers better once I've written down (by hand or keyboard) what I put into my Website. Since maintaining my Website and Blogs makes me write down more and more of what I read, my memory of things became greatly improved by technology.

As an example, here's only a fraction of the millions of things I've written down and stored at my Website.

Bob Jensen's Blogs
Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.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 Fraud Updates --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
Bob Jensen's World Library --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm
Bob Jensen's Home Page Links --- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/

What technology did is simply let me get away from my handwritten notes and scrapbook files in folders that cluttered my home, attic, and basement.

We Should Not Accept Scientific Results That Have Not Been Repeated ---

Jensen Comment
Accountics researchers get a pass since they're not really scientists and virtually nobody is interested in replicating academic accounting research findings published in leading academic accounting research journals that discourage both commentaries and replication studies ---

Having said this I often cite accountics research findings myself as if they were truth. Sometimes they're all I've got. Sigh!

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

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

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

Learn to p-Hack Like the Pros! ---

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

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

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

. . .

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

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

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on p-values ---

Monopoly Monsters of the 21st Century

Video on How Vehicle Manufacturers (think John Deere tractors) Created Technologies to Give Their Dealers Monopolies on Repairs (or make repairs impossible for otherwise good parts) ---

Jensen Comment
There's a fine auto repair shop about three miles down the road from our cottage. I can take my two Subaru Foresters in for oil changes and new tires and batteries and even some simple repairs, but anything complicated requires going to a the closest dealer about 30 miles away. The above video points out that even an expert mechanic who formerly did expert computer repairs for a dealer cannot repair complicated things without having the software and hardware that dealerships monopolize.

To add pain to misery the dealers frequently will not support somewhat older software necessary to run machines (think a satellite receiver now standard on John Deere tractors) such that owners are forced to either replace the entire tractor or purchase a very expensive replacement part that's really not needing replacement if the manufacturer still supported the older computer software.

The bottom line is that technology is used as an excuse to create monopoly monsters.

We roll our eyes and chuckle when deciding to buy a new $20 toaster rather than have it repaired. This is not so funny when it comes to making the same decision to replace a $20,000 part on a $200,000 tractor.

Tesla is working to secure lithium from Chile’s largest producer ---
Jensen Comment
The lithium in nearby Nevada is either too little in amount or too costly to extract or too environmentally dangerous to extract --- or all of the above.

1000+ MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) Getting Started in February ---

What is a "perfect number" and how is one used in the latest Q4 Google financial report?


The Atlantic
Mark Zuckerberg and others continue to tout the potential of personalized learning, pointing to decades-old research that’s been practically impossible to duplicate ---


The Shallowness of Google Translate ---

Take Harvard’s Introductory Course on Buddhism, One of Five World Religions Classes Offered Free Online ---

Bob Jensen's threads on thousands of free MOOCs from prestigious universities ---

The Link to Content in 21st-Century Libraries ---

CNBC:  Should you pay off that mortgage before retirement?

Jensen Comment
I won't go into details about my personal situation, but I'm retired and still carry a big mortgage that I could pay off by writing a check on my Vanguard Long-Term Tax Exempt Fund. But my deductible mortgage interest rate is about half (not quite) of my 2017 after-tax return on the tax exempt fund. It makes no sense for me to pay off my mortgage. However, there is some value risk of tax exempt funds that are slightly and negatively correlated with interest rates. Financial risk of tax exempt mutual funds should be considered before doing what I do with liquid (tax-exempt) savings funds.

The Vanguard Group is bringing down the cost of investing and there’s nothing Wall Street can do about it despite its best efforts ---

Why colleges must change how they teach calculus ---

Jensen Comment
What the article fails to address is what becomes the "weed out" courses for the weakest students in general.

For example, chemistry is often the "weed out" course for premed majors who are weak students having little chance for eventually getting into medical school. This does not mean all chemistry washouts are weak students or that all are weak in all disciplines. As an undergraduate I once dated a student who got her grade raised to a C in Chemistry 1 if she promised to no longer major in chemistry. She went on to graduate in nursing with a 3.0 gpa.

Calculus is often the weed out course for engineering majors who have little chance of eventually graduating in engineering.

Calculus is even the weed out course in some universities for weak accounting majors having little chance of passing the CPA examination. It's not so much that calculus is needed in accounting courses as it is that calculus weeds out the weak students who are probably  not going to do well in a rigorous accounting program. Of course there are other weed out courses. When I was Chair of the Accounting Program at Florida State University we had to accept transfer graduates from over 30 community colleges. At FSU we devoted significant faculty resources to a huge number of Intermediate 1 sections and a small number of Intermediate 2 sections. This is because so many transfer students flunked or dropped out of Intermediate 1.

In this era of grade inflation what happens when we eliminate all the weed out hurdles for undergraduates in some of our most academically rigorous disciplines like premed, engineering, and accounting? The upper level courses are going to become more burdened with many weaker students in my opinion if calculus becomes less of an academic hurdle.

Universities Fabricating Data to Improve Media Rankings ---

Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates ---

Dennis Elam's List of the Worst of the Worst (Fraudsters over time)

I think Dennis missed a few

Bob Jensen's Timeline of Financial Scandals, Auditing Failures, and the Evolution of International Accounting Standards ----

A police department in Michigan is warning of a clever new email phishing scam which tells Netflix customers that their account has been deactivated and asks them to enter their personal information — including credit card numbers ---

Justice Dept. charges 36 alleged scammers for $530 million cyber-fraud scheme ---

Prosecutors said the case is "one of the largest cyber fraud enterprise prosecutions ever undertaken" by the Justice Department.

The Justice Department has charged 36 individuals with connections to a cyber-fraud ring that claimed more than $530 million in stolen funds in its seven-year history.

The group, known as the Infraud Organization, were charged with nine counts, including conspiracy to racketeer, wire fraud, and computer crimes.

The group acquired, sold, and disseminated stolen identities, compromised credit and debit cards, and other financial and personal information.

An indictment filed in Las Vegas detailing the charges was unsealed Wednesday, said the group's alleged administrator and founder, Svyatoslav Bondarenko, who created the forum on the dark web in 2010. The indictment said the founder billed the forum as the "premier destination for carding, and to 18 direct traffic and potential purchasers to the automated vending sites of its members, which serve as online instruments that traffic in stolen means of identification, personally-identifying information, stolen financial and banking information, and other illicit goods."

Prosecutors said that the Bondarenko, a Ukrainian national, dropped off the site's radar in 2015

Continued in article

Ten Fascinating Things from MIT on February 8, 2018

Our roundup of today's top tech news to get you thinking and debating.



Hardcore climate modeling
Here's a fascinating peek inside the math revealing new climate threats. (TR)


Election hacks
DHS officials say some US voter systems were penetrated in 2016.


Turn the computer to one billion billion
How America is trying to claw back its lost supercomputing crown. (Science)


Automation isn't coming ...
Robots and AI will come at workers in three waves. The first already hit. (TR


... it's already here.
Foxconn will cut 10,000 jobs this year. Robots will take up the slack.


Axing fake porn
Reddit has banned communities from sharing AI face-swapped porn. (Verge)


The house that spies
Here's what smart home tech can reveal about the life of a family. (Gizmodo)


Federal R&D boost
New US budget tweaks could help increase research funding. (Science)


North Korea's hacker army
The nation has coders everywhere. Here's what they do. (Businessweek)


Your updated emoticons
There are 157 new emojis for 2018—now featuring redheads. (Emojipedia)


Note from FiveThirtyEight Blog on February 2, 2018 ---

3.6 billion

That’s roughly the number of people who use the internet. Of those billions, 1.6 billion are regular Facebook users, meaning they logged in or posted content on the service at least one time in the last 30 days of the quarter. As for the people who don’t, half are in China, where Facebook is banned. But the company is really trying to get a hold of the people who can but don’t use Facebook. Many are already on the service, but have disengaged despite the company’s best efforts to drag them back. [Bloomberg]

Jensen Comment

I only visit one Facebook account regularly (a daughter who posts daily)

Australia:  The Last Drop of Water on Broken-Hill ---

Papers Retracted for Being Cited Too Often ---

An engineering journal has retracted three 2016 papers. The reason: They had been cited too often.

Although the reason for the retractions may sound odd, the editor, Minvydas Ragulskis, told Retraction Watch he was concerned an author had engaged in citation manipulation.

Specifically, Ragulskis explained that the majority of the citations came from papers at a 2017 conference on which one of the authors, Magd Abdel Wahab, was chair—raising suspicion that he had asked conference presenters to cite his work.

Jensen Comment
Even if it's proven that the author unethically tooted his own horn, these are somewhat controversial retractions,  especially if these were great papers and citation was not a condition for acceptance of a conference paper.

Purportedly it's quite common for editors of for-profit journals to encourage citations from those journals. This becomes totally unacceptable if this demand is made as a condition (even an implied condition) for publication of manuscripts.

University of Rhode Island plans to use its library to broaden the reach of artificial intelligence ---

Apple Will Reportedly Launch Three New Macs This Year ---

Scratching Each Others' Backs
Executives at some of the nation's top investment firms donated hundreds of millions of dollars to the University of Michigan while the university invested as much as $4 billion in those companies' funds ---


Jensen Comment
There are other happenings with less money involved such as giving a $50,000 annual scholarship to XYZ Corporate CEO's child when XYZ makes a corporate gift to the university. In effect shareholders of XYZ are indirectly paying for a non-taxable fringe benefit for the CEO, a fringe benefit that is not even reported as compensation for the CPO.

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

Literary Theorist Stanley Fish Offers a Free Course on Rhetoric, or the Power of Arguments ---

Critical Thinking --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_thinking

Carl Sagan’s Syllabus & Final Exam for His Course on Critical Thinking (Cornell, 1986)  ---

What is Critical Thinking Anyway?

32 Animated Videos by Wireless Philosophy Teach You the Essentials of Critical Thinking ---

Authentic Assessment Toolbox (critical thinking assessments) --- http://jfmueller.faculty.noctrl.edu/toolbox/index.htm
Also see http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/assess.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on concept knowledge and critical thinking ---

Cheating Issues in the Movie Lady Bird:  Christine's Repeated Academic Cheating is Not Trivial and She Knows it ---

When I went to see Lady Bird I fully expected to enjoy it. I knew people who had and it was the sort of film, by description, I knew I would like. I did not expect to see a movie that presented academic dishonesty as a forgettable, perhaps even laudable, act.

To be clear, I don’t expect all good films to have a moral compass or message. I won’t be flogging a commentary decrying the lack of just deserts in A Clockwork Orange, or complaining that the Fast and Furious franchise encourages casual misuse of resources.

But Lady Bird is not an amoral film, nor is it a live-action cartoon, fable, or fairy tale. It’s a film praised for its realism, and one that repeatedly states its moral beliefs about interpersonal responsibility — loudly and clearly. Many characters — including Christine, the willful, complex, and lovable protagonist — commit numerous transgressions, all of which are judged and/or forgiven over the course of the movie, with one notable exception. Consider:

The film exhibits one example after another of interpersonal offenses and offers retributions or resolutions for each — except when it comes to academic cheating.

And Christine cheats. Quite deliberately. She destroys her math records and then lies about her grades to improve her standing. Then she cheats on an exam to continue improving her grade. And it is clear that she is concerned about grades, anxious to get into a good college, and understands that grades matter. Several scenes show her discussing grades, whether she can get into the college she wants, and so on.

Does being sweet and funny and interesting make cheating OK? Is that what we as faculty members should tell our students?

In short, the cheating is not a trivial act, and she knows it. Yet there is not a single moment in the film in which Christine acknowledges even to herself that it is wrong, or a moment in which she experiences any negative consequence that would suggest that academic dishonesty is, in fact, wrong.

At the end of the movie, she is off to her new life at an exclusive East Coast college, which she has gotten into by cheating, and it seems the new life will give her great insight into herself and her relationship with her mother. So, in fact: Yay cheating! The end.

As an instructor I’m wondering what to say to my students about cheating after seeing this movie.

Some threads in the film seem to suggest that the cheating is justified: We’re shown that Christine is talented and unique, desperate to escape her mother, and that she lacks resources others have. Her rich friend, after discovering that Christine has lied about her background, says she can’t imagine having to do that. The implication that rich people don’t have to lie — but the rest of us might — is clear. There is a suggestion that her older adopted brother got into Berkeley because he was a minority student, so as a white person Christine lacks that advantage. She has needs but not resources, so cheating is a legitimate response.

Or maybe the cheating is excusable because it demonstrates Christine’s ambitiousness. Her peers are content to stay in Sacramento and go to community college, or nearby universities. She wants more from life. She’s willing to go to the wall — i.e., cheat — to get it. So we should respect that. Which doesn’t sound at all like any politicians currently in office.

Perhaps she doesn’t know any better. Which is plausible … I guess? But there’s no suggestion that Christine should have known better, and no indication whatsoever that she has actually done something wrong by cheating.

Maybe the film’s failure to deal with her academic dishonesty is a statement about its very seriousness: It is such a violation that it can’t be rectified. Certainly there is no easy or subtle cinematic method to resolve it and still have Christine experience her happy ending at the college of her choice. A more thoughtful approach would have allowed the viewer to understand that cheating — the one act in the film that dramatically changes Christine’s life — wasn’t beyond judgment in this otherwise quite morally conventional film.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on academic cheating are at

It costs taxpayers nearly $2.5 million per graduate at Chicago State University
Why Students Are Leaving Illinois in Droves — and Why It Matters -

For the fourth straight year, the University of Illinois system has frozen tuition for in-state students at its three campuses. Announcing the move in January, the system’s president, Timothy L. Killeen, was explicit about its purpose: to stop the hemorrhaging of Illinois residents enrolling at out-of-state colleges and universities.

Many have laid the blame for that exodus at the feet of state leaders. A bruising budget stalemate between Illinois’s Republican governor, Bruce V. Rauner, and the Democratic-controlled legislature, stretching from 2015 to 2017, led to furloughs, layoffs, and emergency measures at several Illinois public colleges. Some observers say the affair created unease among prospective Illinois students about the long-term health of their home-state higher-ed options.

Sure enough, since the impasse began, enrollments at many of Illinois public universities have slid precipitously from year to year. (Just this fall, freshman enrollment at Western Illinois University fell by 21 percent.) And preliminary data indicate that a greater number of freshmen sought higher education outside the state, while fewer out-of-state students chose to study in the Land of Lincoln. In 2016, the state experienced a net loss of 19,195 students, a 15-percent increase from 2014’s 16,000-student gap, and second only to New Jersey’s 29,000-freshmen deficit. The deepening loss was largely driven by more Illinois residents seeking to study in other states.

But the fact is that Illinois has been losing students long before its budget mess. In both 2012 and 2014, before Governor Rauner’s election, around 33,000 Illinois residents attended college as freshmen outside the state. The state filled only about half of that deficit with the enrollment each year of about 17,000 out-of-staters. Over the last decade, Illinois has averaged a net loss of 8,000 freshmen in each of the five years that data were collected. (The federal government surveys colleges about freshmen-migration patterns only in even-numbered years.)

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
The State of Illinois is now the poster child among states for financial mismanagement and corruption. Now education funding is in crisis to add icing to the corruption cake of fraudulent state worker pensions.

Chicago State University is at an extremely low point and probably is not sustainable ---

The low graduation rate amounts to more than $2.5 million spent per year per graduate. Most of that money is paid for by Illinois taxpayers. According to an audit of the University by the Illinois Auditor General. Chicago State University also owes $356.5 million in debt, the majority of which is owed to the state university retirement system pension plan.

For details click on Illinois at https://www.statedatalab.org/

Federal Student-Loan Program Is Rapidly Losing Money, and Income-Based Repayment Is to Blame, Report Says ---

Why We Forget Most of the Books We Read ... and the movies and TV shows we watch ---

Jensen Comment
The wording should perhaps be "most of the most books we read and movies we watched." Years ago I read virtually all of the mystery books of Agatha Christie when took my frequent airline trips.  Agatha Christie and Ngaio Marsh took my mind away from the boredom of airports and airplanes. Today I can pick up one of those books and find that I remember bits and pieces, but I usually forget most of the content, including the identification of the murderer except in a few books where I always remember the villains.

The same is true when Erika and I decide to re-watch a BBC mystery series from Netflix disks. This winter its the Inspector Lewis series. We both find that we remember parts of each movie but we both usually forget most parts, including identification of the murderers.

But when it's a book I've read or a video I watched for academic purposes I usually remember more of the content, especially the main parts of the content.

There are technical procedural things I've long since forgotten such as I couldn't remember how to integrate the normal (Gaussian) distribution using polar coordinate transformations if my life depended on doing so. But I do remember how to derive interest rate swap valuations from Bloomberg terminal yield curves since I taught how to do this for a number of years.

For a short period of my life I taught Fortran and Cobol. I think I could still program in Fortran but not Cobol. Perhaps that's because I hated having to teach Cobol.

Given Amy Dunbar's message yesterday I'm grateful for still remembering so much of what I read and taught. I think my memory is about as good as it was years ago since I was always absent minded about some things even in my youth.

One memory aid that many of you have overlooked is the tremendous memory aid of having a giant Website containing hundreds of thousands of blog postings organized in such a way that it's relatively easy to search searching key words.  Also the Web crawlers like Google and Yahoo do a pretty good job searching my Website.

For example tomorrow I will announce the posting of my January 2018 blog postings to the archives at
For a decade I've posted almost countless tidbits into those archives. The public lost some of the older files when Trinity ordered me to cut back on the size of my Website when all Trinity University Websites were moved to the cloud. However, for my personal use I even have my very old postings that I can search on my own.

If course if and when I become senile I will no longer remember how to search my Website's huge archives.

My father died in his sleep when he was 89 years old. He could remember vividly most notable events of his life including his 1925 trip to Canada ---
My hope is that I will die with memory intact like the way my father died.

My Dad's Story About His First Trip Away from the Farm

The Tyranny of Metrics The quest to quantify everything undermines higher education ---

Jensen Comment
One problem of doing away with standardized testing metrics is that the logical replacement is a letter of recommendation form a mentor and/or teacher. Here we run four square into the litigious society where there's a starving lawyer on every street seeking to sue.

Also in higher education the average grade is not A- due to grade inflation ---

We need some type of competency metrics because only foolhardy teachers will say anything negative in letters of recommendation. How do we select among competing applicants in Lake Wobegon where every student is an A student?


University Of Texas Faculty Rebels Against Use Of Metrics To Assess Scholarly Performance (of faculty)---

From a MIT Newsletter on January 30, 2018

Trucking’s labor shortage

With the introduction of self-driving semi trucks looming, there is debate over whether the technology will put truckers out of work, or help fill gaps in the industry.
A need for truckers: According to the American Trucking Association, the trucking industry has suffered from a lack of drivers for the past 15 years. And it says the need will only become greater. Autonomous trucks could, in theory, ease this burden, rather than kick current truckers out of their jobs.
Tech takeover: Many of today’s jobs openings in trucking are the result of a lack of trained drivers. The introduction of self-driving trucks could fill those, but it could also have the knock-on effect of reducing efforts to train new drivers, resulting in less of a pipeline to fill jobs. That, in turn, could open the door to yet more self-driving trucks … and so on, until human truck drivers aren’t a thing anymore.


When automation is a gimmick

Many industries are using automation to increase efficiency and lower costs. But some are installing robots and drones just to attract attention (and customers).
Robot nightlife: Nightclubs and bars are trying to cash in on the robot craze. Last week, Jengo the robot bartender started his first shift at the Hard Rock Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi. In December, a nightclub in Prague installed a robot DJ.
Overkill: These robots can cost tens of thousands of dollars, and are pure publicity stunts—as opposed to job-killers. Jengo requires eight humans to work with it to keep the orders flowing.
What we can learn: People still want a human touch to their entertainment. As one club-goer told Reuters about the robo-DJ, “I don’t like the robot. It can’t feel what the people want to dance to. There is no emotion behind the music.”

From an MIT Newsletter on February 5, 2018

Tesla’s worker struggles

The car maker is trying to get out from under a cloud that has hovered over working conditions in its Fremont, California factory for some time now.
On the floor: Some employees have said they receive “
near the lowest pay in the automotive industry and struggle to get workers’ compensation. Reports of injury rates have been blamed on the company not following through on policies like rotating workers every two hours.
A push for change: The Tesla Fremont plant is the only non-union, US-owned automotive plant in the country. Elon Musk was
not happy about the push to unionize last year as a result of dissatisfaction with working conditions.
Making things safer: Tesla is getting set to automate worker rotations. According to
Buzzfeed, it is also hiring a medical director, and looking to increase the number of doctors it staffs on site. Tesla expects its serious injury rate for 2017 to be below the national average, a major improvement from 2015, when it was double the average.

Jensen Comment
To add pain to misery, Fremont is in the high cost living region of the San Francisco Bay. Living costs are much greater than for auto workers most anywhere else in the USA, including those fearsome California taxes on everything imaginable and the highest-cost gasoline in the USA.

YouTube Keyboard Shortcuts – A Complete Guide ---

Udemy's 10 best-selling online classes you can enroll in for under $10 near the end of January 2018 ---

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

Udemy.com is an online learning platform. It is aimed at professional adults.[2] Unlike academic MOOC programs driven by traditional collegiate coursework, Udemy provides a platform for experts of any kind to create courses which can be offered to the public, either at no charge or for a tuition fee.[3] Udemy provides tools which enable users to create a course, promote it and earn money from student tuition charges.

No Udemy courses are currently credentialed for college credit; students take courses largely as a means of improving job-related skills.[3] Some courses generate credit toward technical certification. Udemy has made a special effort to attract corporate trainers seeking to create coursework for employees of their company.[4] For example, PayPal has used the service to train its employees to write Node.js code.[5]

You can enroll in over 55,000 online classes for $10.99 each during Udemy's New Year's sale (sale ended on January 11, 2018) ---

Udemy --- https://www.udemy.com/

For example, in the "What do you want to learn" box type in accounting.

Don't confuse Udemy with Coursera that serves on a higher plane in MOOC-for-credit education
Coursera --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coursera

170+ Courses Starting at Stanford Continuing Studies This Week: Explore the Catalogue of Campus and Online Courses ---

Bob Jensen's threads on MOOCs ---

Form a Chronicle of Higher Education Newsletter on January 16, 2018

From The Chronicle's Mitch Gerber:

Among the unsolicited brochures that cascade through the mail slot at home, the one offering “80% OFF” any of dozens of “Great Courses” from the Teaching Company, of Chantilly, Va., caught my eye. This month you can order a video download of lectures on “Understanding the Universe,” by the astronomer Alex Filippenko, of the University of California at Berkeley, for $94.95 rather than $679.95. Or “The Secrets of Mental Math,” by Arthur T. Benjamin, of Harvey Mudd College, for $17.95.

“We have identified the top 1% of professors,” the company boasts. “Only the top 1 in 5,000 college professors is chosen to be on The Great Courses faculty.” (Actually, that's the top .02 percent, but this is why there are math courses.) The chosen few then become “The World’s Greatest Professors at Your Fingertips.” Potential students can only hope that those top scholars are not miffed at being discounted by 80 percent.

Few things are as dangerous as economists with physics envy ---

Journal of Accounting Research:  Publication by Research Design Rather than Research Results
by Colleen Flaherty
Inside Higher Ed
February 8, 2018

Accountants aren’t known for taking risks. So a new experiment from Journal of Accounting Research stands out: an upcoming conference issue will include only papers that were accepted before the authors knew what their results would be. That’s very different from the traditional academic publication process, in which papers are published -- or not -- based largely on their results.

The new approach, known as “registered reports,” has developed a following in the sciences in light of the so-called reproducibility crisis. But JAR is the first accounting journal to try it.

At the same time, The Review of Financial Studies is breaking similar ground in business.

“This is what good accountants do -- we make reports trusted and worthy of that trust,” said Robert Bloomfield, Nicholas H. Noyes Professor of Management at Cornell University and guest editor of JAR’s registered reports-based issue.

Beyond registered reports, JAR will publish a paper -- led by Bloomfield -- about the process. The article’s name, “No System Is Perfect: Understanding How Registration-Based Editorial Processes Affect Reproducibility and Investment in Research Quality,” gives away its central finding: that registered reports have their virtues but aren’t a panacea for research-quality issues.

“Registration is a different system that has its benefits, but one of the costs,” Bloomfield said, “is that the quality of the research article does improve with what we call follow-up investment -- or all the stuff people do after they’ve seen their results.”

In the life sciences and some social science fields, concerns about the reproducibility of results have yielded calls for increased data transparency. There are also calls to rethink the editorial practices and academic incentives that might encourage questionable research practices. QRPs, as such practices are known, include rounding up P values to the arguably arbitrary “P<0.05” threshold suggesting statistical significance and publishing results that don't support a flashy hypothesis in the trash (the “file drawer effect").

Some of those calls have yielded results. The American Journal of Political Science, for example, has a Replication & Verification Policy incorporating reproducibility and data sharing into the academic publication process. Science established Transparency and Openness Promotion guidelines regarding data availability and more, to which hundreds of journals have signed on. And the Center for Open Science continues to do important work in this area. Some 91 journals use the registered reports publishing format either as a regular submission option or as part of a single special issue, according to information from the center. Other journals offer some features of the format.

Bloomfield said he’d been following such developments for years and talked to pre-registration proponents in the sciences before launching his project at JAR, where he is a member of the editorial board. To begin, he put out a call for papers explaining the registration-based editorial process, or REP. Rather than submitting finished articles, authors submitted proposals to gather and analyze data. Eight of the most well-designed proposals asking important questions, out of 71 total, were accepted and guaranteed publication -- regardless of whether the results supported their hypotheses, and as long as authors followed their plans.

Bloomfield and his co-authors also held a conference on the process and surveyed authors who had published both registered papers and traditional papers. They found that the registered-paper authors significantly increased their up-front “investment” in planning, data gathering and analysis, such as by proposing challenging experimental settings and bigger data sets. Yet, as Bloomfield pointed out, registration tended to reduce follow-up work on data once results were known. That is, a lot of potentially valuable data that would have been explored further in a traditional paper may have been left on the table here.

In all, the editorial process shift makes individual results more reproducible, the paper says, but leaves articles “less thorough and refined.” Bloomfield and his co-authors suggest that pre-registration could be improved by encouraging certain forms of follow-up investment in papers without risking “overstatement” of significance.

Feedback from individual authors is instructive.

“The stakes of the proposal process motivated a greater degree of front-end collaboration for the author team,” wrote one conference participant whose registered paper was accepted by JAR. “The public nature made us more comfortable presenting a widely-attended proposal workshop. Finally, the proposal submission process provided valuable referee feedback. Collectively, this created a very tight theoretical design. In short, the challenges motivated idealized behavior.”

Asked about how pre-registration compares to traditional publication, the participant said, “A greater degree of struggle to concisely communicate our final study.” Pilot testing everything but the main theory would have been a good idea, in retrospect, the respondent said, since “in our effort to follow the registered report process, I now believe we were overly conservative.”

Bloomfield also asked respondents how researchers choose which measures and analysis to report and highlight, and what effect it has on traditional published research. Over, participants said this kind of "discretion" was a good thing, in that it was exercised to make more readable of coherent research.. But some suggested the pressure to publish was at work.

“This is a huge problem,” said one respondent. “What does it give the co-author team to provide no-results tests, for example, in the publishing process?” Another said, “Only significant results tend to get published. Potentially meaningful non-results may be overlooked.” Similarly, one participant said, “I find it amazing how just about every study in the top tier has like a 100 hypothesis support rate -- not healthy.” Yet another said that “experiments are costly. I think people use this discretion to get something publishable from all of the time and effort that goes into an experiment.”

Bloomfield’s paper poses but doesn’t answer certain logistical questions about what might happen if pre-registration spreads further. Should editors be more willing to publish short papers that flesh out results left on the table under REP, for example, it asks. What about replications of papers whose reproducibility was potentially undermined by traditional publishing? And how should authors be “credited” for publishing under REP, such as when their carefully designed studies don’t lead to positive results?

Over all, the paper says, editors could improve both the registered and traditional editorial processes by identifying studies that are “better suited to each process, allowing slightly more discretion under REP and slightly less under [the traditional process], clarifying standards under REP, and demanding more transparency" in traditional processes.

The Review of Financial Studies has organized two upcoming issues to include registered reports on certain themes: financial technology in 2018 and climate finance in 2019. Financial technology authors will present at Cornell next month.

Andrew Karolyi, associate dean for academic affairs at Cornell’s Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management and the journal’s executive editor, has described the registration process as one that transfers academic risk from the researcher to the journal.

Asked if he thought registration would gain a foothold in business, Karolyi said via email that other journals in his field are following RFS’s experiments.

“There is more work curating these initiatives, but I had a great passion for it so I think less about the work than the outcome,” he said. “I want to believe I and my editorial team did our homework and that we designed the experiments well. Time will tell, of course.”

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
Academic (accountics) accounting research results are no longer of much interest as evidenced by the lack of interest of the practicing profession in the esoteric accounting research journals and the lack of interest of the editors of those journals in encouraging either commentaries or replications ---
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"



This new initiative in academic accounting research is a a good thing, but as Woodrow Wilson said years ago"
"It's easier to move a cemetary than to change a university curriculum (or accounting research journals) or simple (unrealistic) experiments using students as surrogates of real-life decision makers."

What went wrong with accountics research ---

Academic accounting researchers just don't like to leave the campus to collect research data. They prefer to analyze data that purchase and cannot control at collection points. They worship at the alters of p-values generated by regression software.

This new "Design Initiative" of JAR is analogous to having top accountics chefs write research recipe books.

The problem with any recipe is that when put to the test by a home cook the outcome may be awful. 
Why do recipes come out bad at home?
The frequent problem is that the ingredients are not of the assumed high quality.
Also an ingredient not available is skipped or replaced with an inferior substitute.

And our top accountics scientists really have not been very imaginative. Mostly they throw purchased database (think Compustat or CRSP) ingredients into a regression stew and then wait for the p-values to float to the top. They warn that correlation is not causation but then conclude causation anyway.

The ultimate criticism of JAR's "Design Initiative" is that problems for which there is no available design/recipe will be ignored or skipped over because there is no published recipe.

Accountics "science" to date is in big trouble. 
Outside disciplines (think economics, finance, and psychology) aren't citing accountcs journals, and accounting practitioners couldn't care less about what's published in those journals. FASB does hire experts to track accountics journal content, but I don't think that this has a great deal of impact on the content of those standards. The content of quantitative finance (think interest rate swaps) did have some impact on the writing of FAS 133 and it's DIG pronouncements, but I don't recall accountics articles being cited. Accounting researchers at the time did not know enough about derivatives contracts and markets to write interesting derivatives accounting research in the 1990s and early years of the 21st Century.

Number Of Americans Renouncing Their U.S. Citizenship Fell In 2017, The First Decline In Five Years ---
Jensen Poem
The big jump
Preceded Trump
The tax bet
Ain't here yet

Added note
The numbers a miniscule in a nation with over 300 million citizens
A major reason, selective service (military draft for males), ended in the 1970s
Other reasons (marriage, tax, politics) still exist but do not have people running for the borders like a military draft
I wonder how much free health care is a factor (think free nursing care) for those that say adios

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

Repatriation is often the "forgotten" phase of the expatriation cycle; the emphasis for support is mostly on the actual period abroad.[citation needed] However, many repatriates report experiencing difficulties on return: one is no longer special, practical problems arise, new knowledge gained is no longer useful, etc. These difficulties are highly influenced by a number of factors including self-management, spouse's adjustment, time spent abroad and skill utilisation. What is crucial is that every individual perceives these factors in a different way. Reintegration is a process of re-inclusion or re-incorporation of a person into a group or a process, and may contribute to overcoming repatriation.

Direct managers and HR staff often notice the difficulties a repatriate experiences, but they are not always able to act on it. Budget shortcomings and time constraints are frequently cited as reasons why it fails to be an agenda priority. Solutions for repatriation difficulties do not have to be expensive and can lead to great benefits for the company.[ Basic support can consist, for example, of good communication in advance, during and after the international assignment, or a mentor program to assist the repatriate. The expatriate and his/her family should feel understood by his or her company. Support can increase job satisfaction, thereby protecting the investment made by the company.[

You can't go home again ---

Noam Chomsky Explains What’s Wrong with Postmodern Philosophy & French Intellectuals, and How They End Up Supporting Oppressive Power Structures ---

Jensen Comment
I wish Ed Arrington would reply to this piece. Ed devoted much of his professional life to researching these "French intellectuals" ---
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_philosophy#Poststructuralism_and_postmodernism .

Daily Nous: Philosophy Comics --- http://dailynous.com/daily-nous-philosophy-comics

Fifty Colleges With the Highest Biggest Percentage Hikes in Tuition ---

Jensen Comment
This article suffers from a denominator effect in that universities with higher tuition are likely to have lower percentage increases even when the dollar amounts of the increases are quite large. There are exceptions like the College of William and Mary.


From the Scout Report on January 26, 2018

Mastodon Science --- https://joinmastodon.org/ 

Mastodon is a micro-blogging service and social network platform similar to Twitter. Unlike Twitter, Mastodon is a decentralized service based on the World Wide Web Consortium's ActivityPub protocol. Users may select any Mastodon server they want, or even host their own. The Mastodon website contains a server selection wizard that allows users to find a server with content moderation policies that are to their liking. The 500-character "toots" are listed in strict chronological order without any optimization to insert advertising or promote particular users. Each toot can be set to one of four tiers of visibility, with the most permissive appearing everywhere and the least only being visible to a specific user. In addition to Mastodon's web interface, which works in any recent browser, numerous client applications are available for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. The Mastodon server is a free software with source code available on GitHub.

Stylish --- https://userstyles.org/

Stylish is a browser extension that allows users to customize the appearance of sites that they visit. A large collection of themes for popular websites is available on the Stylish website. Some of these themes exist to address ergonomic concerns. For example, users working at night may select dark themes for the sites they visit, reducing the sensation of staring into the headlights of a car. Other themes are more whimsical. For example, Star Wars fans may apply Star Wars skins to sites that they visit. Pokemon fans can replace Facebook's reaction icons with their own menagerie. Stylish is available for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera

Is Music A Universal Language?


Some Types of Songs are Universally Identifiable, Study Suggests

Can You Tell A Lullaby from a Love Song? Find Out Now

A Study Suggests That People Can Hear Universal Traits in Music

Form and Function in Human Song

Radiolab: Songs That Cross Borders

Sounding Out!

From the Scout Report on February 9, 2018

Qutebrowser Science ---  www.qutebrowser.org 
Qutebrowser is a minimalist browser designed to be operated from the keyboard. It uses the same rendering libraries as Chrome, and can, therefore, handle any site that works in Chrome. Users of the Vimperator Firefox extension or the Vimium Chrome extension will find Qutebrowser's interface familiar. Unlike other more resource-demanding browsers, Qutebrowser does not provide a plugin system. Instead, it provides a userscript system (unrelated to javascript-based Greasemonkey/Tampermonkey scripts) that can execute scripts written in any scripting language (perl, python, ruby, etc), passing in information about the currently displayed page. Qutebrowser also includes a memory-efficient, host-based ad blocking system. To keep memory requirements low, the authors do not plan to add more complicated, Adblock-like rule-based blocking. Qutebrowser is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux.

Home Movie Registry --- www.homemovieregistry.org/wp
Since the 1920s, home movies have been produced by everyday people, documenting daily activities and offering a wealth of information about twentieth-century American life. The Home Movie Registry, a curated search engine from the Center for Home Movies (CHM), is an innovative project designed to bring together the swath of amateur films digitized and collected by participating archives. In the exhibits section, readers will find two exhibits currently featured on the site: "Home Movies and the African American Community," and "Home Movies and Television." Readers may also simply scroll down the fascinating list of amateur-made films on the home page, which illuminates such ephemera as a 1950s Chicago picnic and a 1975 homemade travel documentary. For more targeted research, historians, artists, documentarians, students, and others will find an excellent search bar for easy filtering through the registry's video troves.

Mutant Crayfish Can Clone Itself, May Provide Insight for Cancer Researchers


This Mutant Crayfish Clones Itself, and It's Taking Over Europe

All-female mutant crayfish that clone themselves are taking over rivers and lakes around the world

Mutant, all-female crayfish spreading rapidly through Europe can clone itself

Clonal genome evolution and rapid invasive spread of the marbled crayfish


YouTube: Parthenogenesis

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

Education Tutorials

EDUCAUSE: 2017 Student and Faculty Technology Research Studies ---

Teacher's Activity Guide: Myths, Folktales & Fairy Tales --- http://teacher.scholastic.com/writewit/mff/

SpanglerScienceTV ---  www.youtube.com/user/SpanglerScienceTV

Research in Action Podcast --- http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/research/podcast/

Download Free Coloring Books from Great Libraries, Museums & Cultural Institutions: The British Library, Smithsonian, Carnegie Hall & More  ---

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

Astronomers have recorded telescope footage of Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster flying through deep space ---

NASA Recorded the Farthest-Ever Pictures Taken in Space ---

SpanglerScienceTV ---  www.youtube.com/user/SpanglerScienceTV

The Magnetic Field Is Shifting. The Poles May Flip. This Could Get Bad ---

NASA Puts 400+ Historic Experimental Flight Videos on YouTube ---

Digital Einstein Papers --- http://einsteinpapers.press.princeton.edu/

LitMed: Literature Arts Medicine Database --- http://medhum.med.nyu.edu/?action=new

National Library of Medicine: Graphic Medicine (cartoons) --- www.nlm.nih.gov/exhibition/graphicmedicine

Research in Action Podcast --- http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/research/podcast/

Longreads Best of 2017: Science, Technology and Business Writing ---

Australia:  The Last Drop of Water on Broken-Hill ---

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

LitMed: Literature Arts Medicine Database --- http://medhum.med.nyu.edu/?action=new

Longreads Best of 2017: Science, Technology and Business Writing ---

National Library of Medicine: Graphic Medicine (cartoons) --- www.nlm.nih.gov/exhibition/graphicmedicine

The World in Ten Blocks (ten blocks in Toronto) --- http://theworldintenblocks.com/

The Global Jukebox (music of many cultures) --- https://theglobaljukebox.org/

How 2 powerful women beat gender pay gaps to become the president of Salesforce and the CEO of Deloitte Consulting ---

EDUCAUSE: 2017 Student and Faculty Technology Research Studies ---

Bob Jensen's threads on the history of women in the professions ---

Research in Action Podcast --- http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/research/podcast/

Daily Nous: Philosophy Comics --- http://dailynous.com/daily-nous-philosophy-comics

A new one-volume book offers an updated (corrective) history of the rise and fall of the Third Reich ---

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

“The Artist Project” Reveals What 127 Influential Artists See When They Look at Art: An Acclaimed Video Series from The Metropolitan Museum of Art ---

Rossetti Archive (Art and Poetry) --- www.rossettiarchive.org

The History Channel:  How the Nazis Tried to Cover Up Their Crimes at Auschwitz ---

Ancient Priestess' 4,400-Year-Old Tomb Is Discovered in Egypt ---

1,600 Occult Books Now Digitized & Put Online, Thanks to the Ritman Library and Da Vinci Code Author Dan Brown ---

W.E.B. DuBois Papers 1877-1963 (civil rights activist and poet) --- http://credo.library.umass.edu/view/collection/mums312

The Adverts 250 Project (American History) --- https://adverts250project.org/

The World in Ten Blocks (ten blocks in Toronto) --- http://theworldintenblocks.com/

A new one-volume book offers an updated (corrective) history of the rise and fall of the Third Reich ---

The Mercury Theatre on the Air (radio history) --- www.mercurytheatre.info

Complete Letters of Willa Cather --- https://cather.unl.edu/letters/

The Willa Cather Archive --- http://cather.unl.edu/ 

British Library:  Untold Lives Blog --- http://blogs.bl.uk/untoldlives/

LitMed: Literature Arts Medicine Database --- http://medhum.med.nyu.edu/?action=new

Microsculpture --- http://microsculpture.net/microsculpture.html

DPLA: Two Hundred Years on the Erie Canal --- https://dp.la/exhibitions/exhibits/show/erie-canal

Literary Witches: An Illustrated Celebration of Trailblazing Women Writers Who Have Enchanted and Transformed the World ---

Read the Poignant Letter Sent to Anne Frank by George Whitman, Owner of Paris’ Famed Shakespeare & Co Bookshop (1960): “If I Sent This Letter to the Post Office It Would No Longer Reach You” ---

The Battle of Adwa (Ethiopia vs. Italians in 1896) ---  www.battleofadwa.org

150 Years Ago:  Bringing Universal Education to the South ---

The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and Jewish Identity ---

What William James Got Right About Consciousness ---

Free: Download 10,000+ Master Drawings from The Morgan Library & Museum’s Online Collection ---

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  

Behold the Beautiful Pages from a Medieval Monk’s Sketchbook: A Window Into How Illuminated Manuscripts Were Made (1494) ---

Harry Ransom Center: Movie Poster Collection --- https://hrc.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/p15878coll84

You Must Remember This (film stars and other celebrities of the past) --- www.youmustrememberthispodcast.com

The New Yorker: The Lost Giant of American Literature (William Melvin Kelley (1937 - 2017)) --- www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/01/29/the-lost-giant-of-american-literature

Art of the Menu (restaurant art) --- www.underconsideration.com/artofthemenu

The Cult of Mary Beard:  How a late-blossoming classics don became Britain’s most beloved intellectual ---

Medical Case Studies on Renaissance Melancholy ---

David Rumsey Historical Map Collection: Maps Up Close ---  www.davidrumsey.com/maps-up-clos

Stripper's Guide (comic strips in newspapers) --- http://strippersguide.blogspot.co.uk/

The Center for Cartoon Studies --- http://www.cartoonstudies.org/

Pre-Raphaelite Sisterhood (medieval art) --- http://preraphaelitesisterhood.com/

A Classical Dictionary of Vulgar Tongue (1788) ---

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

Language Tutorials

The Shallowness of Google Translate ---

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

Music Tutorials

The Global Jukebox (music of many cultures) --- https://theglobaljukebox.org/

University of Iowa Digital Library: Ignaz Playal Early Editions ---

From the Scout Report on January 26, 2018

Is Music A Universal Language?


Some Types of Songs are Universally Identifiable, Study Suggests

Can You Tell A Lullaby from a Love Song? Find Out Now

A Study Suggests That People Can Hear Universal Traits in Music

Form and Function in Human Song

Radiolab: Songs That Cross Borders

Sounding Out!

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

Bob Jensen's threads on music performances ---

Writing Tutorials

The Purdue OWL: Subject-Specific Resources (online writing lab) --- https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/4

Khan Academy: Grammar ---  www.khanacademy.org/humanities/grammar

Teacher's Activity Guide: Myths, Folktales & Fairy Tales --- http://teacher.scholastic.com/writewit/mff/

Longreads Best of 2017: Science, Technology and Business Writing ---

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/

January 30, 2018

 January 31, 2018

February 3, 2018

February 5, 2018

 February 6, 2018

February 7, 2018

February 8, 2018

February 9, 2018

February 10, 2018

February 13, 2018

February 14, 2018

View All Health News


Oh Rats!
"Some" Evidence That Cell Phones Cause Tumors ---


Scientists with the National Toxicology Program say there is some evidence that the radiation from cellphones can increase the chance of having a rare type of nerve tumor, at least in male rats.

What this means for people is still up for debate.

As cellphone use climbs, questions about the safety of these common devices have lingered. About 80% of Americans over the age of 13 have a smartphone, and adults spend an average of nearly 3 hours a day using one, according to a 2017 report from comScore, a data review company.

The tumors that showed up in the rats are called schwannomas. They grew in the hearts of male rats, but not female rats, perhaps because the males’ larger bodies absorbed more radiation than the females, said lead researcher John Bucher, PhD. He is a senior scientist with the National Toxicology Program.

Continued in article

From a MIT Newsletter on January 31, 2018

The jury’s still out on brain stimulation for Alzheimer's

A trial hints that electrical brain jolts may ease the condition, but caution is required.
Backstory: Deep brain stimulation, which applies small electric zaps inside the brain, helps tame Parkinson’s. It’s been claimed it may also help ease Alzheimer's. 
What’s new: A
recent test of brain stimulation for Alzheimer's shows that two of three recipients suffered less mental decline compared to a control group.
But: New Scientist points out that the trial was small and not randomized, meaning improvements may be a result of the placebo effect. Further tests are required.

Jensen Comment
Erika's somewhat similar internal spine stimulator for pain relief did not work. After slightly over 18 months the device was removed surgically an replaced with a morphine pump. The pump is not perfect but seems to be working somewhat in helping her reduce her oral pain meds.

Set 1 About Erika's (failed) Spinal Cord Stimulator Installed in May 2016

Promising male birth control pill has its origin in an arrow poison ---

The Link Between Brain Damage and Football Explained ---

Bangladeshi rice scientists have advanced a beta carotene-rich rice to a varietal release stage, heralding a new era in fight against vitamin-A deficiency ---



Humor for February 2018

MAAW's Jokes Pages --- http://maaw.blogspot.com/2018/02/dozens-of-additional-jokes.html

Animal Crossing Signs ---

Tina Fey and Rachel Dracht return to 'SNL' for a Super Bowl sketch that'll have you laughing out loud ---

Famous Quotes of Will Rogers --- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IR_VAirKE9I
Some are especially timely for 2016-2020 Washington DC

Forwarded by Scott Bonacker
Will Rogers:  Three audio files available for download here – about bankers, the economy, etc.. --- https://archive.org/details/RTFM-Harp-940216

Humorous Obituary --- http://www.geisenfuneralhome.com/sitemaker/sites/memsol.cgi?user_id=2064544
Also see

AICPA:  Vanity License Plates That Will Make You Smile

Canada:  Fleeing bank robbery suspects caught at Tim Hortons drive-thru (Mmmmm Doughnuts) ---

NYT:  Letter of Recommendation: Rodney Dangerfield ---

Funny Historic Super Bowl Commercials ---

'Jeopardy' host Alex Trebek ridicules contestants after they all fail to answer questions about football — and it's hilarious ---
Jensen Comment
I watched this show and agree that this segment is hilarious, especially when Trebek himself is unusually active. The contestant who chose the category is particularly interesting because he's so animated during almost all his answers in virtually all categories. This was his third week as a big winner. He's probably the most interesting contestant I've ever watched on Jeopardy, because he's so willing to take big gambles. He sometimes gives wrong answers, but he's amazing in terms of how he recovers quickly with big bets. In some ways I feel sorry for him because at times he gives essentially correct answers that are only off by the tiniest of margins. In terms of football, however, he doesn't have a clue! By the way he's a teller in a branch bank even though he sometimes seems like a history professor. It's really amusing to watch him.

How many plumbers does it take to fix an airplane toilet?
It’s a joke with no punch line, as 85 plumbers on a Norwegian flight headed for Germany discovered Saturday when their plane had to return to Oslo because of a broken toilet, reported The Independent. The flight, which departed Oslo bound for Munich, turned back at the Swedish border ---


Forwarded by Dr. Wolff

It’s been snowing all night.  So the morning goes like this;

8:00   I made a snowman.

8:10   A feminist passed by and asked me why I didn’t make a snow woman.

8:15   So, I made a snow woman.

8:17   The nanny of the neighbors complained about the snow woman's voluptuous chest.

8:20   The gay couple living nearby grumbled that it could have been two snowmen instead.

8:25   The vegans at No. 12 complained about the carrot nose, as veggies are food and not to decorate snow figures with.

8:28   I am being called a racist because the snow couple is white.

8:31   The Muslim gent across the road wants the snow woman to wear a headscarf.

8:40   Someone calls the cops who show up to see what’s going on.

8:42   I am told that the broomstick of the snowman needs to be removed because it could be used as a deadly weapon. Things get worse after I mutter : "Yeah, if it's up your a***"

8:45  Local TV news crew shows up.  I am asked if I know the difference between snowmen and snow-women?  I reply, "Snowballs" and am called a sexist.

8:52   My phone is seized and thoroughly checked while I am being blindfolded and flown to the police station in a helicopter.

9:00   I'm on the news as a suspected terrorist bent on stirring up trouble during this difficult weather.

9:10   I am asked if I have any accomplices.

9:29   A little known jihadist group has claimed it was their plot.

Moral: There is no moral to this story. It’s just the America we live in today!

Forwarded by Paula


These great questions and answers are from the days when ' Hollywood Squares' game show responses were spontaneous,
not scripted, as they are now. Peter Marshall was the host asking the questions, of course.. 

Q... Paul, what is a good reason for pounding meat? 

A... Paul Lynde: Loneliness! 

(The audience laughed so long and so hard it took up almost 15 minutes of the show!)

Q ... Do female frogs croak? 

A... Paul Lynde: If you hold their little heads under water long enough. 

Q... If you're going to make a parachute jump, at least how high should you be 

A... Charley Weaver: Three days of steady drinking should do it.. 

Q.. True or False, a pea can last as long as 5,000 years... 

A... George Gobel: Boy, it sure seems that way sometimes. 

Q... You've been having trouble going to sleep. Are you probably a man or a woman? 

A... Don Knotts: That's what's been keeping me awake. 

Q... According to Cosmopolitan, if you meet a stranger at a party and you think that he is attractive, is it okay to come out and ask him if he's married? 

A... Rose Marie: No wait until morning. 

Q... Which of your five senses tends to diminish as you get older? 

A... Charley Weaver: My sense of decency.. 

Q... In Hawaiian, does it take more than three words to say 'I Love You'? 

A...Vincent Price: No, you can say it with a pineapple and a twenty. 

Q... What are 'Do It,' 'I Can Help,' and 'I Can't Get Enough'? 

A... George Gobel: I don't know, but it's coming from the next apartment. 

Q...  As you grow older, do you tend to gesture more or less with your hands while talking? 

A... Rose Marie: You ask me one more growing old question Peter, and I'll give you a gesture you'll never forget. 

Q... Paul, why do Hell's Angels wear leather? 

A... Paul Lynde: Because chiffon wrinkles .
Q... Charley, you've just decided to grow strawberries. Are you going to get any during the first year? 

A... Charley Weaver: Of course not, I'm too busy growing strawberries. 

Q... In bowling, what's a perfect score? 

A... Rose Marie: Ralph, the pin boy. 

Q... It is considered in bad taste to discuss two subjects at nudist camps.. One is politics,what is the other?  


A...Paul Lynde:  Tape Measures.


Q... During a tornado, are you safer in the bedroom or in the closet? 

A... Rose Marie: Unfortunately Peter, I'm always safe in the bedroom. 

Q... Can boys join the Camp Fire Girls? 

A... Marty Allen: Only after lights out.  


****Q...   When you pat a dog on its head he will wag his tail. What will a goose do?  


A... Paul Lynde: Make him bark?  


******Q...   If you were pregnant for two years, what would you give birth to?  


A... Paul Lynde: Whatever it is, it would never be afraid of the dark..  


Q...   According to Ann Landers, is there anything wrong with getting into the habit of kissing a lot of people? 

A... Charley Weaver: It got me out of the Navy!

Q...   It is the most abused and neglected part of your body, what is it? 

A... Paul Lynde: Mine may be abused, but it certainly isn't neglected. 

Q...   Back in the old days, when Great Grandpa put horseradish on his head, what was he trying to do? 

A... George Gobel: Get it in his mouth. 

Q... Who stays pregnant for a longer period of time, your wife or your elephant? 

A... Paul Lynde: Who told you about my elephant? 

Q... When a couple have a baby, who is responsible for its sex? 

A... Charley Weaver: I'll lend him the car, the rest is up to him 

Q... Jackie Gleason recently revealed that he firmly believes in them and has actually seen them on at least two occasions. What are they? 

A... Charley Weaver: His feet. 

Q...   According to Ann Landers, what are two things you should never do in bed? 

A... Paul Lynde: Point and laugh 





Humor January 2018--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book18q1.htm#Humor0118.htm 

Humor December 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q4.htm#Humor1217.htm

Humor November 2017--- http://faculty.trinity.edu/rjensen/book17q4.htm#Humor1117.htm

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