Bidness

Mike the Mad Biologist

Category archives for Bidness

A while ago, I discussed Republican Senator Tom Coburn’s NSF snipe hunt. Well, the EU has a doozy of an actual research-related scandal: Italian authorities and the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) in Brussels, Belgium, have confirmed that they are prosecuting members of a large network accused of pocketing more than €50 million (US$72 million) in…

Peer review, the process in which scientific publication has to pass muster with critical reviewers, has a lot of problems. But a widely-cited report by McKinsey & Company consulting which claimed that Obamacare will result in one-third of companies dropping healthcare coverage for their employees is worth examining (italics mine): The predictable fallout led Democrats,…

I’ll get to creationism in a bit, but first… Last week, Yves Smith started a wee lil’ ruckus among progressives with a post titled “Bribes Work: How Peterson, the Enemy of Social Security, Bought the Roosevelt Name.” In that post, she argued: Bribes work. AT&T gave money to GLAAD, and now the gay rights organization…

…well, it still sucks. And JPMorgan Chase isn’t helping: The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services says it wants to know why JPMorgan Chase is charging welfare recipients 85 cents each time they withdraw money from one of its bank machines, according to Rebecca Henrie, a spokesperson with DSHS’s Community Services Division.

It might come as a shock to some readers, but I actually don’t mind investing–that is, long-term value investing–as long as it’s not valued more than labor through the tax code (Got Capital Gains Tax?). But this isn’t value investing, but surfing electrons: The most striking periodicity involves large peaks of activity separated by almost…

Dan Froomkin has a great article about the role that financial speculation plays in driving up gasoline prices*. Keep in mind that even Goldman Sachs, the largest oil trader, admits that speculation drives up oil prices. But what really disgusting is how this speculation-based rise in prices serves as a wealth transfer from, well, just…

It’s an odd-sounding question, but, if you use a debit card, a very important one. I bring this up as The Huffington Post recently published an article about the political battle over the fees banks charge stores when customers use their credit and debit cards. While the article–and much of the ensuing commentary–has focused on…

A few years back, Dick Cavett made the following observation about the misuse of the phrase “presumption of innocence“: Cast your mind back about a dozen years to Tonya Harding. For the newly born, she was the young skater who hired a goon acquaintance to lurch out of the shadows and whack rival skater Nancy…

I’m a bit late to this story, but, if you missed it, the LA Times had a superb article about how IKEA treats and pays workers at its U.S. facilities much worse than at its Swedish factories: Workers complain of eliminated raises, a frenzied pace and mandatory overtime. Several said it’s common to find out…

The NY Times has a good article about how few prosecutions have even been attempted in the aftermath of Big Shitpile (the housing crisis and the following good times). One of the key players was Countrywide, led by CEO Chris Mozilo, which initiated so many bad loans (that were then, through financial alchemy, turned into…