Complexity / Predictions / Modeling
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79 Articles and Resources. Go to: [Next 29]
Date Fairness.com Resource Read it at: Jan 07, 2013 Marijuana use is too risky a choice
QUOTE: In 1943, Vice President Henry Wallace published a book celebrating the coming "century of the common man." That century did not last very long. We have transitioned instead into the era of the clever man and clever woman. We have revised our institutions, our programs, our rules in ways that offer profitable new chances to those with cultural know-how -- and that inflict disastrous consequences on those who are overwhelmed by a world of ever-more-abundant and ever-more-risky choices.
CNN (Cable News Network) Oct 23, 2012 Italian scientists resign over L'Aquila quake verdicts
QUOTE: Earthquake experts worldwide expressed shock at the manslaughter convictions of six Italian scientists who failed to predict the deadly L'Aquila quake, warning that the decision could severely harm future research. Two scientists resigned their posts with the government's disaster preparedness agency Tuesday after a court in L'Aquila sentenced six scientists and a government official to six years in prison.
CNN (Cable News Network) Aug 17, 2012 Prestigious Emory University intentionally misreported student data to rankings magazines for more than a decade, the Atlanta school disclosed Friday, adding its high-profile name to a growing list of
QUOTE: Prestigious Emory University intentionally misreported student data to rankings magazines for more than a decade, the Atlanta school disclosed Friday, adding its high-profile name to a growing list of institutions caught up in scandals over rankings pressure.
Seattle Times Apr 17, 2012 How to Pay No Taxes: 10 Strategies Used by the Rich
QUOTE: For those who can afford a shrewd accountant or attorney, our era is rife with opportunities to avoid—or at least defer—tax bills, according to tax specialists and public records. It’s limited only by the boundaries of taste, creativity, and the ability to understand some very complex shelters.
BusinessWeek Jul 15, 2011 Making Murder Count (Op-Ed)
QUOTE: cities pay a lot of attention to the Census Bureau’s annual population estimates, which take place between the decennial censuses. And when these come in lower than expected, many will fight hard to revise them upward...But, because the process is so politicized, it often results in significant overestimates.
New York Times Jul 11, 2011 Obama Administration Rolls Out Standards for Health Insurance Marketplaces
QUOTE: The regulations issued Monday, which provide a fair amount of latitude to states, were welcomed by consumer groups, patient advocates and some business lobbyists. But they may not satisfy liberals who argue that the exchanges should tightly regulate insurance and contract with selected health plans that offer the best deals. And they may not satisfy conservatives...
New York Times Jun 27, 2011 Teacher Grades: Pass or Be Fired
QUOTE: [Impact's] admirers say the system, a centerpiece of the tempestuous three-year tenure of Washington’s former schools chancellor, Michelle Rhee, has brought clear teaching standards to a district that lacked them and is setting a new standard by establishing dismissal as a consequence of ineffective teaching. But some educators say it is better at sorting and firing teachers than at helping struggling ones...
New York Times Jun 26, 2011 U.S. Plans Stealth Survey on Access to Doctors
QUOTE: Alarmed by a shortage of primary care doctors, Obama administration officials are recruiting a team of “mystery shoppers” to pose as patients, call doctors’ offices and request appointments to see how difficult it is for people to get care when they need it....In response to the drumbeat of criticism, a federal health official said doctors need not worry because the data would be kept confidential.
New York Times Jan 07, 2011 In Battle Over Health Law, Math Cuts Both Ways
QUOTE: Much of the health care debate will center on cost — to the government and to employers. On Thursday, Republicans issued their own report, called “Obamacare: A Budget-Busting Job-Killing Law,” which concluded, “The health care law will cost the nation $2.6 trillion when fully implemented, and add $701 billion to the deficit in the first 10 years.” The Republicans’ projections were in contrast to the budget office’s analysis of the health care law, and a related budget reconciliation measure, after they were adopted last March.
New York Times Jan 06, 2011 Republicans Are Given a Price Tag for Health Law Repeal, but Reject It
QUOTE: The new House speaker, John A. Boehner, flatly rejected the report, saying it was based largely on chicanery by Democrats....effectively putting him on a war footing with the independent analysts whose calculations generally guide discussions about the projected cost or savings of any legislation.
New York Times Jun 18, 2010 Peddling Relief, Industry Puts Debtors in a Deeper Hole
QUOTE: Consumers rarely emerge from debt settlement programs with their credit card balances eliminated, these critics say, and many wind up worse off, with severely damaged credit, ceaseless threats from collection agents and lawsuits from creditors.
New York Times May 18, 2010 Clients Worried About Goldman’s Dueling Goals
QUOTE: Goldman’s bets against WaMu, wagers that took place even as it helped WaMu feed a housing frenzy that Goldman had already lost faith in, are examples of conflicting roles that trouble its critics and some former clients. While Goldman has legions of satisfied customers and maintains that it puts its clients first, it also sometimes appears to work against the interests of those same clients when opportunities to make trading profits off their financial troubles arise.
New York Times May 12, 2010 Prosecutors Ask if 8 Banks Duped Rating Agencies
QUOTE: The New York attorney general has started an investigation of eight banks to determine whether they provided misleading information to rating agencies in order to inflate the grades of certain mortgage securities, according to two people with knowledge of the investigation.
New York Times Apr 23, 2010 Rating Agency Data Aided Wall Street in Mortgage Deals
QUOTE: One of the mysteries of the financial crisis is how mortgage investments that turned out to be so bad earned credit ratings that made them look so good. One answer is that Wall Street was given access to the formulas behind those magic ratings — and hired away some of the very people who had devised them.
New York Times Oct 05, 2009 Prepaid, but Not Prepared for Debit Card Fees (The Card Game)
QUOTE: For many people who do not have bank accounts, or cannot get a credit card, the appeal [of a prepaid debit card] is irresistible... But their convenience comes with a catch: fees, often hidden in the fine print.
New York Times Sep 17, 2009 Expand the House? (On Politics)
QUOTE: because each state gets at least one seat... and because the overall size of the House has not changed in a century, the number of people represented by a single congressman can vary widely.
New York Times Sep 05, 2009 New Exotic Investments Emerging on Wall Street
QUOTE: some are dismayed by Wall Street’s quick return to its old ways, chasing profits with complicated new product
New York Times Sep 02, 2009 The Fix Is In: The hidden public-private cartel that sets health care prices.
QUOTE: Fundamentally, the entire payment model of American health care drives medical centers, doctors, and hospital managers to push for more fancy procedures at the expense of primary care doctors.
Slate Aug 26, 2009 Adjustable Mortgages Loom as Threat to Housing Recovery
QUOTE: Mr. [Harvey] Clavon is part of what many economists say is a looming threat to a housing recovery — more than a half-million option ARMs [adjustable rate mortgage] scheduled to reset in the next four years, at rates many homeowners cannot afford.
New York Times Jun 23, 2009 Deep in Bedrock, Clean Energy and Quake Fears
QUOTE: an American start-up company, AltaRock Energy, will begin using nearly the same method [to extrate geothermal energy that caused an earthquake in Switzerland] to drill deep into ground laced with fault lines...
New York Times Feb 05, 2009 Safety rules on lead in kids' products perplex and polarize
QUOTE: A federal law taking effect Tuesday makes it illegal for anyone to sell children's toys, books, clothes and jewelry if the items contain virtually any lead or phthalates... But testing whether the products contain either is not required for a year.Toy Industry Association President Carter Keithley says the decision amounts to a "don't ask, don't tell, but don't sell" policy.
USA TODAY Nov 20, 2008 How I Slashed My Bills with Tech (Part 1): Time for some technological belt-tightening. How I cut $40 from my monthly phone bills within a few hours.
QUOTE: 1. Change your wireless carrier right now....2. Kill your land line....3. Get a bill assessment...
PC Magazine Sep 29, 2008 Crisis of Care on the Front Line of Health
QUOTE: The problem is that in this era of managed care and reimbursements dictated by Medicare and other insurers, doctors don’t get much compensation for talking to patients. They get paid primarily for procedures, from blood tests to surgery, and for the number of patients they see.
New York Times Sep 26, 2008 California's secretary of state says open-source software is needed to safeguard electronic voting systems.
QUOTE: The study revealed a variety of problems, from software vulnerabilities that could let an attacker install malicious software that changes the outcome of a vote, to opportunities to tamper with the devices while they are held in storage.
Technology Review Sep 26, 2008 A License To Not Quite Kill
QUOTE: Since U.S. police first began using tasers in 2000, 350 people have died in police custody after being stunned by the devices....trying to discern when a taser should be used appropriately becomes complicated when a taser's range is extended or the Shockwave is fired at multiple targets.
Forbes Sep 22, 2008 EPA Unlikely to Limit Perchlorate in Tap Water
QUOTE: The Environmental Protection Agency, under pressure from the White House and the Pentagon, is poised to rule as early as today that it will not set a drinking-water safety standard for perchlorate, a component of rocket fuel that has been linked to thyroid problems in pregnant women, newborns and young children across the nation.
Washington Post Mar 19, 2008 A Good Name Dragged Down: Consumers Get Tangled In Terrorist Watchlist
QUOTE: More American consumers have gotten caught up in a special brand of watchlist purgatory because their names are similar to ones on OFAC's list of "specially designated nationals..." Yesterday's court-ordered release of documents to the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, offers a window into the kinds of disruptions suffered by those ensnared in the process, as well as the difficulty of clearing their names.
Washington Post Jan 29, 2008 Weighty Assumptions: Doctors Too Quick to Blame Obese Patients' Ills on Fat, Studies Suggest
QUOTE: Overweight and obese patients have long complained that doctors treat them insensitively and are too quick to attribute health problems to their weight. But their claims of bias were often met with skepticism -- until recently. [New research] is adding to evidence that the problem may be real and may affect patients' quality of care.
Washington Post Jan 18, 2008 Unintended Consequences: The Case of the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker
QUOTE: ...[economists] found that when the A.D.A. [American With Disabilities Act] was enacted in 1992, it led to a sharp drop in the employment of disabled workers...Employers, concerned that they wouldn’t be able to discipline or fire disabled workers who happened to be incompetent, apparently avoided hiring them in the first place...How long have such do-good laws been backfiring?
New York Times Jan 14, 2008 Cholesterol Drug Zetia Doesn't Benefit Health, Trial Shows
QUOTE: study was completed in April 2006, but the results were only released Monday by Merck and Schering-Plough after continual prodding by medical professionals. According toThe New York Times, the companies had initially planned to release the findings by March 2007, but then missed several self-imposed deadlines, blaming the delay on the complexities of necessary data analysis.
Washington Post Dec 06, 2007 SAFE Act won't turn mom-and-pop shops into WiFi cops
QUOTE: ISPs already have a duty to notify authorities if they stumble across anything that appears to be child pornography or molestation evidence. The new [The Securing Adolescents from Exploitation-Online Act] bill ups the penalties for not reporting this information
Ars Technica Nov 28, 2007 U.S. Takes Steps to Simplify Voting From Abroad
QUOTE: American voters abroad have long faced intense frustrations. But the 2000 election debacle galvanized private groups and election officials to seek ways to attack underlying problems, which have been numerous.
New York Times Nov 27, 2007 In Hospice Care, Longer Lives Mean Money Lost
QUOTE: Over the last eight years, the refusal of patients to die according to actuarial schedules has led the federal government to demand that hospices exceeding reimbursement limits repay hundreds of millions of dollars to Medicare.
New York Times Nov 17, 2007 Read Them, Or Weep: Condo Association Documents Give Buyers a Glimpse of the Future
QUOTE: Before buying a condominium, buyers are given a few days -- how long varies by jurisdiction -- to study what can be hundreds of pages of documents spelling out the community's rules and financial health. In those documents are nuggets of information as minuscule as the operating hours of the laundry room and as significant as plans for major construction, or pending lawsuits. It is during that period, before closing on a deal, that home buyers can walk away without risking the loss of their deposit.
Washington Post Nov 05, 2007 Mass transit plan makes waves in Seattle ecotopia: In one of the nation's greenest cities, a mass transit proposal has green voters divided.
QUOTE: But here, where global warming is universally accepted and residents like Anderson can quote numbers about the "carbon footprint" of the proposed light-rail system, there's no agreement about what's best for the earth. Or, for that matter, what's best for the millions of motorists routinely stuck in traffic on a notoriously convoluted freeway system.
Christian Science Monitor Oct 30, 2007 The Road to a South African Driver’s License (Johannesburg Journal)
QUOTE: For the K53 is just part of the Catch-22 that faces every aspiring motorist here: To drive legally, one very sensibly needs a license. Except that licenses often seem impossible to get.
New York Times Aug 31, 2007 Cities study victims' criminal past
QUOTE: Victims' relatives say the focus on victims' backgrounds demeans the loss and desensitizes police and the community to violence.
USA TODAY Aug 22, 2007 America's Hackable Backbone
QUOTE: But because SCADA systems are largely owned by the private sector, critical infrastructure like power plants and water systems may remain vulnerable until the problem affects profits--or leads to disaster. Christy argues that we can't wait that long: His unofficial opinion is that SCADA needs government regulation.
Forbes Aug 16, 2007 Forced to Pick a Major in High School
QUOTE: Some parents have welcomed the requirement, noting that a magnet school in the district already allowed some students to specialize. But other parents and some educators have criticized it as preprofessionalism run amok or a marketing gimmick....after finding many of the legal cases boring and hard to relate to, she was unable to take classes in other fields because she was locked into her specialization.
New York Times Aug 15, 2007 NASA Revisions Create a Stir in The Blogosphere
QUOTE: NASA has slightly revised its record of average annual temperatures in the United States since 2000 -- modifications that researchers say are insignificant but that some conservative commentators and bloggers have seized upon to assert that global warming has been hyped as a problem.
Washington Post Jun 19, 2007 State Dept. Faulted on Hill for Passport Delays
QUOTE: The State Department did not head off a massive backlog of passport applications before this summer's peak travel season...Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) said the State Department should consider refunding a fee to applicants who paid an extra $60, on top of the regular $97 passport fee, for expedited processing.
Washington Post May 12, 2007 Online Ads vs. Privacy
QUOTE: For advertisers, and in many ways for consumers, online advertising is a blessing. Customized messages rescue advertisers from the broad reach of traditional media. And consumers can learn about products and services that appeal directly to them. But there are huge costs, and many dangers...To approach individuals with customized advertising, you have to know who they are. Or at least, you have to gather enough personal information about them that their identity could be easily figured out.
New York Times Mar 16, 2007 History of Hernia Patch Raises Questions on Implant Recalls
QUOTE: Still, at a time when the use of implanted medical devices is growing sharply, the episode of the hernia patch is an example of what some experts say is a far wider problem: that some major manufacturers, while contending that they carefully monitor product safety, are not as rigorous as they should be.
New York Times Mar 09, 2007 The Brain on the Stand
QUOTE: The influence of what some call neurolaw is clearly growing. Neuroscientific evidence has persuaded jurors to sentence defendants to life imprisonment rather than to death; .... Should courts be in the business of deciding when to mitigate someone’s criminal responsibility because his brain functions improperly, whether because of age, in-born defects or trauma? As we learn more about criminals’ brains, will we have to redefine our most basic ideas of justice?
New York Times Feb 05, 2007 Google Boggle: One analyst says it's worth $415 a share. Another says $650. Another $601. Don't listen to any of them.
QUOTE: No analyst, no matter how talented, knows what Google—or, for that matter, any stock—is really worth. To understand why this is so, you need to understand that price targets are not precise scientific facts but extremely subjective estimates.
Slate Jan 28, 2007 Evidence From Bite Marks, It Turns Out, Is Not So Elementary
QUOTE: Prosecutors have invoked bite-mark matches to secure convictions in numerous cases, only to see these convictions overturned when DNA or other evidence has become available. In spite of the evolution of other forensic sciences, bite-mark analysis remains an inexact tool.
New York Times Jan 25, 2007 For What It's Worth, CBO Sees Zero Deficit: Projection Clashes With Fiscal Realities
QUOTE: The federal budget deficit will fall to $172 billion this year and $98 billion next year, then disappear completely by 2012, according to a report released yesterday by the Congressional Budget Office. But virtually nobody -- not even top CBO officials -- believes it. That is because the CBO, the nonpartisan office that supplies Congress with cost estimates, is required to make some whopping assumptions...
Washington Post Jan 12, 2007 Agents Say Fast Audits Hurt I.R.S.
QUOTE: Top officials at the Internal Revenue Service are pushing agents to prematurely close audits of big companies with agreements to have them pay only a fraction of the additional taxes that could be collected, according to dozens of I.R.S. employees who say that the policy is costing the government billions of dollars a year....[agents] said a policy intended to avoid delays in auditing corporations was being pushed so rigidly that it prevented them from pursuing numerous examples of questionable corporate tax deductions.
New York Times Jan 10, 2007 Canadian Report on SARS Cites Health System Failures
QUOTE: "The SARS epidemic that killed 44 people in Ontario in 2003 spread because of a shoddy public health system and inadequate safety practices...Throughout much of the epidemic, Canadian authorities assured the public and health workers that precautions were being taken to prevent the disease's spread."
Washington Post Dec 12, 2006 Protectors, Too, Gather Profits From ID Theft
QUOTE: Credit monitoring has quickly gained traction with consumers through aggressive advertising that often promotes its value in protecting against identity theft. But its abilities are far more limited than is commonly perceived.
New York Times
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