Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for April 14th, 2017

Following explosions and facial disfigurement, Navy bans vaping on ships

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Teresa Welch reports at McClatchy:

U.S. Navy sailors won’t be able to use electronic cigarettes on ships and planes after a series of incidents where the devices were responsible for explosions, injuries and fires.

The Navy announced the new policy Friday after tracking incidents tied to e-cigarettes that had taken place on Naval vessels. The service branch recommended the ban last year, according to the Navy Times, as safety concerns grew.

In a report, the Navy determined that when e-cigarettes’ lithium ion batteries get too hot, the seal around them fails and turns the device into a small bomb. Other common devices like cellphones and laptops have the same kind of battery, but they haven’t been shown to explode in the same manner. The Navy said that e-cigarette battery incidents could be caused by improper handling and charging of the electronic devices as well as poor material construction.

“The Naval Safety Center concludes that these devices pose a significant and unacceptable risk to Navy personnel, facilities, submarines, ships, vessels and aircraft,”

Fifteen incidents involving e-cigarettes were recorded by the Navy between October 2015 and June 15, 2016. There was no record of incidents before that time. In two cases, people had the devices in their mouths when an explosion occurred, which caused facial and dental injuries. Two other incidents took place while the devices were in use.

Eight incidents took place on board a Naval vessel or aircraft, with one requiring an aircraft to return to base because an e-cigarette had spewed too much smoke in the cargo. Firefighting equipment was needed to extinguish the fires on two ships. Ten of the 15 incidents took place because of “improper stowage or transport” of the device, mostly in service members’ pockets. The malfunctions set fire to the person’s clothing and caused first and second degree burns. . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 5:47 pm

Where do your NEA dollars really go?

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Geoff Edgers reports in the Washington Post:

Viki Graber’s sneakers slosh in the wet grass as she twists two willow branches to form an arch. This 30-foot-long tunnel, an installation and playful passageway being built in Salamonie State Park, is the National Endowment for the Arts at work in Mike Pence country. And it’s anything but an easy gig for Graber, 53, a basket weaver. She sleeps in an unheated cabin nearby — home is 90 minutes north — as she creates her work. For this, she will get $3,000.

Two hours south, in Indianapolis, NEA money is helping Big Car revive a neighborhood. The nonprofit group is converting 10 bungalows and a shuttered church — all abandoned in recent years — into artist housing. With the help of a $10,000 NEA grant, Big Car has curated a sound exhibition that’s installed in almost a dozen spaces, including a library, bookstore and botanical garden. Once blighted and barely alive, Cruft Street now thumps with activity.

Then there’s James Gladin, a machine operator lying in a hospital bed at Parkview Health in Fort Wayne. Gladin, a 53-year-old with heart issues, collapsed at work the day before. On Friday morning, artist Diane Gaby rolls up to Room 4230 with her art cart. She’s making the rounds for the hospital’s Healing Arts program. That form of therapy has been a passion for Karen Pence, the state’s former first lady and herself a painter. Now in Washington, she remains publicly silent as her husband serves an administration proposing that the NEA be eliminated.

“I doodle,” Gladin tells Gaby. “That’s about it.”

“Well, do a little doodle for me and I’ll show you what this pencil can do,” she says. “I’m not expecting the Mona Lisa.”

“You’re not getting that,” says Gladin, who manages a thin smile.

This comes at a time when the NEA, which has been threatened many times over the 52 years since President Lyndon B. Johnson signed it into law, is under attack. President Trump has proposed eliminating the agency altogether. In Indiana, artists and nonprofit leaders in small towns or underserved communities fear that lawmakers don’t understand how much they depend on the millions of arts dollars distributed each year outside booming metropolises. NEA dollars give children access to the arts at a time when schools are cutting back. They provide performances for people who don’t live in cultural centers. They keep such handmade traditions as basket-weaving and quiltmaking alive. Nowhere is this more evident than in Indiana, where a 500-mile, 36-hour tour through the state reveals what’s really at stake.

“We’re going into communities where there is so little access to the arts,” says Jon Kay, the director of Traditional Arts Indiana, which helped coordinate the NEA funding of Graber’s project. “If we lose NEA support, these traditions will be gone.”

The NEA’s budget is modest but designed to reach out to people outside big cities. The agency gives nearly $50 million of its $150 million annual budget to state arts councils so they can, in turn, distribute money to local programs and artists. Those contributions come with a built-in multiplier, as the NEA requires arts councils to match the federal government’s contributions. In addition, in fiscal 2015, the NEA awarded more than 300 grants totaling $7.7 million for projects in rural areas. . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 5:43 pm

How being a theater person got John Wilkes Booth killed

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Rachel Manteuffel is an actor who works in the Washington Post‘s Editorial Department. She writes:

Friday is the 152nd anniversary of one of the foulest deeds in American history. It is also a day in which American actors swallow hard and recognize parts of ourselves in the villain of the story. Being an actor gave John Wilkes Booth the opportunity to murder America’s greatest president, but being an actor was also his tragic flaw. Arguably, it got him killed.

Enough has been written about why Booth murdered Abraham Lincoln. But what he did next, according to many accounts, is inexplicable unless you treat him as not entirely rational, even for a presidential assassin. You have to consider him as . . . a theater person.

When disaster hits you during a live performance — say, a spontaneous onstage nosebleed — you think fast. If you can, you keep the audience from knowing something went wrong. If you can’t, you make sure the audience knows that someone has a plan to fix it. The worst thing that can happen at your play is that the audience realizes it’s watching boring old real life.

Okay, the worst thing that can happen at your play is that someone shoots Lincoln. But once Booth had already done that — using his familiarity with the play to make sure the sound of the single derringer shot would be drowned out by the biggest laugh of the night — his actor’s ego took over, and he realized he had blown it. What made the assassination so successful had killed it as theater. The climax had come so suddenly and quietly that the audience didn’t know it had happened. They were robbed.

For an ordinary, sane person concerned with escape and survival, someone not afflicted by the theater, the smartest exit route would be to turn and leave through the unguarded door through which he’d come in. But for Booth, there was an audience, and so he was not sane. What made sense theatrically was a knife fight with the army major sitting near the president and a swashbuckling leap onto the stage.

Did any of this make logical sense? No. He went from the anonymous darkness of the presidential box onto the bright stage, where the 1,500-odd people in the room would see his famous-actor face, which instantly became the most wanted face in America. It was terrible getaway strategy, but it was great theater.

And having had no rehearsal to work out the kinks, he tripped and fell. Decades before “break a leg” became a thing, Booth literally did it.

No matter. His show had to go on. He had a line, his line was in Latin, and he needed to get to center stage to get it out. But confronted with a bewildered audience that didn’t even realize the president had been shot, he had to ad lib a little playacting as exposition. He waved his bloody knife around, saying, “Sic semper tyrannis!” So it always goes for tyrants! And then, because many people still didn’t seem to be getting it, he added, helpfully, “I have done it.” . . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 3:26 pm

Posted in Daily life

Dutch Kids Aren’t Stressed Out: What Americans Can Learn From How the Netherlands Raises Children

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Alternet has an interesting excerpt from a book:

The following is an adapted excerpt from The Happiest Kids in the World (The Experiment, April 2017) by Rina Mae Acosta and Michele Hutchison.

Two toddlers have just chased each other to the top of a jungle gym while their mothers are lost in conversation on a nearby park bench. A gang of older children in tracksuits comes racing along the bike path, laughing. They overtake a young mom, who is cycling slowly, balancing a baby in a seat on the front of her bike and a toddler on the back. A group of girls is playing monkey-in-the-middle on the grass. Not far away, some boys are perfecting their skateboarding moves. None of the school-age children are accompanied by adults. This is no movie, just a happy scene on a regular Wednesday afternoon in Amsterdam’s Vondelpark.

In 2013, UNICEF rated Dutch children the happiest in the world. According to researchers, Dutch kids are ahead of their peers in well-being when compared with twenty-nine of the world’s richest industrialized countries. The US ranked twenty-sixth, just above Lithuania, Latvia and Romania – the three poorest countries in the survey.

As an American mom and a British mom, both of us married to Dutchmen and raising our kids in the Netherlands, it’s hard not to notice how happy Dutch children are. The scene we described above should give you an idea why: Childhood over here consists of freedom, plenty of play and little academic stress.

When we compare notes with friends back home, we hear horror stories, often to do with draconian selection processes to get into schools, starting at the tender age of three. These days there’s even such a thing as “good” or “bad” birthdays and “red-shirting” to ensure children have a head start over the other children in the class. In America, parenting has evolved into a highly competitive, exhausting business and schooling into a warzone with children drilled like miniature soldiers.

Stress-Free Schooling

Of all the parenting decisions we have to make, our child’s education is one of the most fundamental. Education is seen as the route to success and a guarantee of a happy future. No American parent can ever be sure they’ve made the right decision, whether they’ve chosen private or public school. If you don’t get your kid into a good nursery school, they won’t get into a good elementary school. A good elementary school is essential to get your child into a decent middle and then high school. And, of course, a decent high school is essential to get a place at the best university. Many parents will go to great lengths to get their child into the right school – taking out an extra mortgage, or moving to a different town.

But in the Netherlands, childhood is unencumbered with any of these particular concerns. Education has a different purpose: the route to a child’s well-being and their individual development. Schools in highly-populated areas use a lottery process to select students, rather than competitive entrance exams and heart-wrenching interviews. To get into most college programs, all a student needs is to pass high school exams at the right level. As a result, there is no real pressure to get straight A’s. In order to come to grips with the Dutch school system, we had to let go of a lot of things we’d been brought up to believe in and re-examine what education was all about.

In Dutch elementary schools, kids start school at four but don’t start structured, formal learning – reading, writing, arithmetic – until six years old, Year 3. If they show interest in these subjects earlier, they are provided with the materials to explore them. Children may learn to read and write in their first year of school this way, but there is no pressure. Classmates who learn to read later, at six or seven, show no particular disadvantage and soon catch up.

Most schoolchildren don’t get any homework until they leave primary school. It’s unsurprising, a growing body of research suggests that homework for young children is a waste of time and has little or no benefit in enhancing learning or performance. Play, which is also a learning process, and having fun are considered more important here in the Low Countries than getting ahead academically.

According to the American National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, “Reading is the single most important skill necessary for a happy, productive and successful life. A child that is an excellent reader is a confident child and has a high level of self-esteem.” By not forcing children to read too early, reading becomes a pleasure, not a chore.

Joyful Illiterate Preschoolers

Rina’s three-year old Julius attends peuterspeelzaal (playschool) four times a week. At each session there are, at most, sixteen children, supervised by two teachers. Julius is shy and doesn’t talk much around strangers or in big groups, and is getting extra help to develop his language skills – but through play rather than formal instruction.

A typical session at playschool involves play, listening to stories, arts and crafts, and music. There’s no attempt to teach the letters of the alphabet or numbers. Dutch playschool revolves around children doing what they enjoy best – playing, and interacting with other children. Cool, calm Dutch moms seem to love the laid-back approach which the teachers assure them is the best for their kids.

A Dutch friend, Maria, who lives in San Francisco with her husband and six-year-old, muses, “Being an outsider, I’m constantly amazed at how American moms are different from Dutch moms. My mind is blown on a daily basis. There’s this preoccupation with reading at a young age – they believe that the ability for younger kids to learn to read and write and recognize numbers will somehow mean more success later in their academic life.”

Ottilie, another Dutch mom living in San Francisco, says, “Both my kids started reading ‘late’ – when they were almost seven. The school flagged them for reading help at the age of six, but I turned it down. I wanted to wait, since it’s thought normal in Holland that not all kids are ready to read at five or six. Then, when they were turned seven, they both started reading. They advanced super-fast and have since been avid readers, reading at higher levels than is standard for their grade. If they had had specialist help, that program would have received the credit for this. But I’m convinced that kids, as long as they don’t have dyslexia or other learning issues, will simply learn how to read when they are ready.”

“A six is enough”

In the Dutch approach to elementary school education, there is no top of the class to aspire to. The same is true of high schools in which pupils are streamed into different schooling types: vocational/professional/academic. Once you are in a particular stream, you need to score an average of six out of ten to stay at this level. Marks are deducted for mistakes and perfection (ten out of ten) is virtually unattainable. Most students score sixes and sevens. This is sufficient to secure their high school diplomas and a place at a university, college, or technical program after graduation. In a new study, only 18% of Dutch students said they were studying hard with an 8 [A] as their aim, one student quoted said, “I’d rather get a six and have no stress than a seven and have no life.” Only a small percentage make an eight average, and this is considered extremely high. Dutch scores are graded on a curve, so an individual score is relative to what everyone else scored.

In the academic stream, if students have made it through with a passing grade, . . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 1:21 pm

Posted in Books, Daily life, Education

The Bathtub Fallacy and Risks of Terrorism

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Kenneth Anderson writes at Lawfare:

Bloomberg economics commentator Justin Fox is tired of being told that his chances of getting killed in a terrorist attack are (much) lower than his chances of slipping, falling, and dying in a bathtub. Implication being—suck it up, people, and quit being such irrational babies when it comes to assessing risks from terrorism.

Having also grown weary of hearing some version of this following terrorist attacks or government security responses, I was interested to find out why Fox (who’s a very smart guy) thinks such comparisons should be reckoned a bad form of argument.  Why does he think comparing fatal bathtub accidents and fatal terrorist incidents is fundamentally inapt, to the point of calling it “The Bathtub Fallacy”? (For those who don’t know his work, Justin Fox is a sophisticated business and financial journalist with a keen understanding of the literatures of statistics and risk assessment, and he’s also the author of the outstanding revisionist history of the “efficient market hypothesis,” The Myth of the Rational Market, 2009.)

What’s “The Bathtub Fallacy,” according to Fox? Following a terrorist incident or government counter-measure, he says (quoting a recent Financial Times (paywalled) column by its principal political columnist, Janan Ganesh), statistics are “dug out to show that fewer Westerners perish in terror attacks than in everyday mishaps. Slipping in the bath is a tragicomic favourite. We chuckle, share the data and wait for voters and politicians to see sense.” To this Fox adds:

Sure enough, a couple of days later [after Ganesh’s column], there was Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times, making Ganesh’s point for him: “The bottom line is that most years in the U.S., ladders kill far more Americans than Muslim terrorists do. Same with bathtubs. Ditto for stairs. And lightning.” Now, I love statistics. I cite them and sort them and chart them all the time. I even wrote a whole column last month about various causes of untimely death in the U.S. But I agree with Ganesh that comparing annual deaths due to bathtubs and terrorism is a mistake.

The urtext of ordinary accident/terrorism comparisons might be the 2009 book by political scientist John Mueller, Overblown: How Politicians and the Terrorism Industry Inflate National Security Threats, and Why We Believe Them.  (Note: Mueller has been an occasional Lawfare contributor, along with his co-author Mark Stewart—quite graciously, given the distance between his views and what I’d describe as the mean of Lawfare posts on these topics.)  Overblown was widely noticed and debated when it appeared in 2009 at the beginning of the first Obama term, and it has remained a book popular among strands of the American left and libertarian right seeking debunking arguments by which to critique the post-9/11 national security apparatus.

Over time versions of the “bathtub” argument have become a bit of a go-to-meme among some journalists and public policy pundits.  It pops up with clock-work regularity each time there’s a terrorist attack, whether in the U.S., Europe, or elsewhere.  But what’s wrong with it?  Maybe it’s correct and useful and not a “fallacy” at all; after all, John Mueller is also a smart guy and he doesn’t think it’s bad reasoning.

This Readings post focuses on the Fox column, however, and the column gives three reasons why Fox thinks the comparison with bathtub slip-and-falls is mistaken and why terrorism is different (it will surprise no one that I broadly agree with them).  The three reasons:

First … terrorism is designed to, you know, sow terror. As Ganesh writes, most people can “intuit the difference between domestic misfortune and political violence. The latter is an assault on the system: the rules and institutions that distinguish society from the state of nature. Bathroom deaths could multiply by 50 without a threat to civil order. The incidence of terror could not.”

Second is that ladders, stairs and bathtubs are undeniably useful. Terrorists, not so much ….

Finally, comparing the incidence of terrorism with that of common accidents is an incompetent and irresponsible use of statistics. Household accidents are lots and lots of small, unrelated events. As a result, while individual accidents can’t be predicted, the overall risk is easy to quantify and is pretty stable from year to year.

Note that each of these reasons aims to show that the risks of the bathtub are different from those of terrorism solely on the basis of the real-world consequences of these events—real-world harms—and not as a matter of each category’s “intrinsic” morality (as many would frame the difference).  There might also be (and for many, most, perhaps nearly all of us, there is) an “intrinsic” moral difference between these two, but Fox’s three reasons broadly fit within “consequentialist” rather than “deontological” ethics. They are situated within the standard utilitarian framework of economists—the standard public policy framework that seeks to identify, and to the extent possible quantify, real-world harms which, whatever else one might want to say about a category such as terrorism, serve to establish a common denominator for policy upon which even those with differing moral views can agree.

Hence, when Ganesh differentiates between mere “misfortune” and “political violence,” he does not argue that political violence is different (for purposes of comparing risks) because of its wickedness as such—that is, because of its intrinsic morality. What matters for comparative policy purposes are the harms terrorism brings about (including the knock-on and remote ones it threatens to bring about). There are fundamental differences between ordinary accidents and terrorism—apart from any judgments of their comparative morality.

Taken together, Fox’s three reasons constitute a quite sweeping indictment of The Bathtub Fallacy; together they also encompass, in a few short sentences, a wide range of ethical and social claims. (I will say more in a follow-up post about the first reason—the threat to institutions that undergird a society’s common social life.)  Fox’s column goes on, however, to focus on the third reason—what he regards as the bad use of statistics in making these comparisons in the first place:

Terrorism is different. There are small incidents, but there are also huge ones in which hundreds or thousands of people die. It’s a fat-tailed distribution, in which outliers are really important. It also isn’t stable: Five or 10 or even 50 years of data isn’t necessarily enough to allow one to predict with confidence what’s going to happen next year. It’s a little like housing prices—the fact that they hadn’t declined on the national level for more than 50 years before 2006 didn’t mean they couldn’t decline. Meanwhile, the widespread belief that they wouldn’t decline made the housing collapse more likely and more costly.

The conclusion that terrorism is different relies importantly on Fox’s characterization as a “fat-tailed distribution” of risks.  Fox cites Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s (of Black Swan fame) extensive writing on this, but then moves on to an interview Fox conducted with Carnegie Mellon University professor Baruch Fischhoff in researching this column.  Who’s Baruch Fischhoff, you ask? Well, among (many) other things, Fischhoff is a “past president of the Society for Risk Analysis, past member of multiple national and international commissions on the risks of terrorism and other bad stuff, and author of lots of books with ‘risk’ in the title.”  Also, Fox adds, he was Daniel Kahneman’s former research assistant at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in the early 1970s, and thus someone “present at the creation of the school of psychological research that has shown how bad we humans can be at processing probabilities.”

“People who just look at the average are doing the analysis wrong,” Fischhoff tells Fox.  Fischhoff does not think, either, that “it’s irrational to fear terrorism more than falling in the bathtub.” Why? It’s different in terms “of the uncertainty and the shape of the distribution, how well we understand it and the possibility of these large-scale events.”  Moreover, Fischhoff adds, in another deceptively simple observation, that “people tolerate risks where they see a benefit.”

While that last point might appear to be a mere truism, it sheds light on how risk analysis fits into cost-benefit analysis.  In public policy analysis, at least, risk analysis is relevant because it tells us not just about determinate costs and benefits, but about . . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 1:16 pm

Posted in Science, Terrorism

Republicans Love Bombing, But Only When a Republican Does It

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It seems that Republicans consider tribal affiliation above all in deciding on a position, and Democrats practically not at all. This explains why the GOP can be so unified compared to the disarray of Democrats, although currently the GOP is having trouble being unified. Kevin Drum notes a second instance of GOP positions altering dramatically when the only change in the president’s political party:

A few days ago I noted that Republican views of the economy changed dramatically when Donald Trump was elected, but Democratic views stayed pretty stable. Apparently Republicans view the economy through a partisan lens but Democrats don’t.

Are there other examples of this? Yes indeed. Jeff Stein points to polling data about air strikes against Syria:

Democrats are about as supportive of the strikes as they were under Obama, with 38 percent backing them in 2013 and 37 percent agreeing with them now, according to the Washington Post. Now 86 percent of Republican voters back the strikes, compared with the just 22 percent who did so in 2013.

This is a pretty stunning difference. Democratic views stayed solidly negative regardless of who was president. But Republican approval rates skyrocketed from 22 percent to 86 percent when Trump became president. This despite the fact that Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons was more extensive in 2013 than it was this year. . .

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Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 12:17 pm

Posted in GOP

Filing Taxes in Japan Is a Breeze. Why Not Here? (Because Turbo Tax and H&R Block won’t allow Congress to do it)

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T.R. Reid writes in the NY Times:

Ah, the blithe joys of springtime in the United States. Azaleas in bloom at the Masters, breezy picnics on balmy afternoons, Easter egg hunts — and the annual ordeal of tax forms, with helpful I.R.S. instructions like this: “Go to Part IV of Schedule I to figure line 52 if the estate or trust has qualified dividends or has a gain on lines 18a and 19 of column (2) of Schedule D (Form 1041) (as refigured for the AMT, if necessary).”

Americans will spend more than six billion hours this year gathering records and filling out forms, just to pay their taxes. They will pay some $10 billion to tax preparation firms to help get the job done and spend $2 billion on tax-preparation software (programs that still require hours of work). Millions will subsequently get a notice from the I.R.S. saying they got the figures wrong, or put the right number on the wrong line or added wrong in calculating line 47 — which means more hours of work or more fees to the tax preparer.

And here’s the most maddening thing of all: It doesn’t have to be this way.

Parliaments and revenue agencies all over the world have done what Congress seems totally unable to do: They’ve made paying taxes easy. If you walk down the street in Tel Aviv, Tokyo, London or Lima, Peru, you won’t see an office of H & R Block or a similar company; in most countries, there’s no need for that industry.

In the Netherlands, the Algemene Fiscale Politiek (the Dutch I.R.S.) has a slogan: “We can’t make paying taxes pleasant, but at least we can make it simple.” It is certainly simple for my friend Michael, a Dutch executive with a six-figure income, a range of investments and all the economic complications that come with an upper-bracket lifestyle.

An American in the same situation would have to fill out a dozen forms, six pages long. Michael, by contrast, sets aside 15 minutes per year to file his federal and local income tax, and that’s usually enough. But sometimes, he told me, he decides to check the figures the government has already filled in on his return. At this point, Michael was getting downright indignant. “I mean, some years, it takes me half an hour just to file my taxes!”

In Japan, you get a postcard in early spring from Kokuzeicho (Japan’s I.R.S.) that says how much you earned last year, how much tax you owed and how much was withheld. If you disagree, you go into the tax office to work it out. For nearly everybody, though, the numbers are correct, so you never have to file a return.

When I told my friend Togo Shigehiko in Tokyo that Americans spend hours or days each spring gathering records and filling out tax forms, he was incredulous. “Why would anybody want to do that?” he asked.

What’s going on in these countries — and in many other developed democracies — is that government computers handle the tedious chore of filling out your tax return. The system is called “pre-filled forms,” or “pre-populated returns.” The taxpayer just has to check the numbers. If the agency got something wrong, there’s a mechanism for appeal.

Our own Internal Revenue Service could do the same for tens of millions of taxpayers. For most families, the I.R.S. already knows all the numbers — wages, dividends and interest received, capital gains, mortgage interest paid, taxes withheld — that we are required to enter on Form 1040.

The I.R.S. sends out a letter called a CP2000 Notice by the millions every year. This is the form that says: You entered $4,311 on Line 9b, but the reports we have on file say the figure should have been $4,756. I get these letters now and then — the revenue service is always right — and it makes me mad. If the government already has all this stuff, why did I have to spend hours digging through receipts and statements and 1099 forms to report what the I.R.S. already knows?

Questions like that have prompted some members of Congress — including Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon; Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts; and Dan Coats, a former Republican senator from Indiana — to champion pre-filled forms. But their bills never went anywhere because the tax-preparation industry lobbies strenuously against them. The “Tax Complexity Lobby,” as it has been called, includes big national preparers like H & R Block and tax-prep software companies. . .

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It’s too bad that the businesses that control Congress will not allow legislation that might impact their profits even when such legislation would help the public a lot. However, it does illustrate the degree to which Congress now works for businesses and not for voters.

Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 9:25 am

The Wee Scot and Dr. Selby do the prep, Maggard’s V2 open comb does the shave, and I put on my Stetson to finish the job

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Dr. Selby 3x Concentrated Shaving Cream not only works extremely well, the bowl is nicely designed, the lid serving as a pedestal. Unfortunately, it seems to be no longer available, which is a shame: it easily produces a copious amount of excellent, slick lather, and the traditional lavender fragrance is quite nice. With the Wee Scot, I had plenty of lather in the brush for my three-pass shave, with enough left at the end for three more passes had I wanted.

But no need for more passes. Maggard’s V2 open-comb is highly efficient (and very comfortable to boot) and it easily left a BBS result at the end of three passes.

A good splash of Stetson Classic, and the job is well done.

I really am bummed that Dr. Selby’s 3x is no more. It was a great source of lather.

Jack Prenter did a little infographic on the history of shaving:

Written by Leisureguy

14 April 2017 at 9:12 am

Posted in Shaving

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