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Daily Archives: August 23, 2013

How Obesity Threatens America’s Future 2013

“After three decades of increases, adult obesity rates remained level in every state except for one, Arkansas, in the past year, according to F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America‘s Future 2013, a report from the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The full report is available here. Visit for interactives, graphs, charts and obesity rates for the states and nation going back decades.

Thirteen states now have adult obesity rates above 30 percent, 41 states have rates of at least 25 percent, and every state is above 20 percent, according to the report. In 1980, no state was above 15 percent; in 1991, no state was above 20 percent; in 2000, no state was above 25 percent; in 2007, only Mississippi was above 30 percent.*

Since 2005, there has been some evidence that the rate of increase has been slowing. In 2005, every state but one experienced an increase in obesity rates; in 2008, rates increased in 37 states; in 2010, rates increased in 28 states; and in 2011, rates increased in 16 states.”

International Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance

Final version 10 July 2013 –International Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance: “As technologies that facilitate State surveillance of communications advance, States are failing to ensure that laws and regulations related to communications surveillance adhere to international human rights and adequately protect the rights to privacy and freedom of expression. This… Continue Reading

Digital Market Manipulation

Calo, M. Ryan, Digital Market Manipulation (August 15, 2013). University of Washington School of Law Research Paper No. 2013-27. Available at SSRN “Jon Hanson and Douglas Kysar coined the term “market manipulation” in 1999 to describe how companies exploit the cognitive limitations of consumers. Everything costs $9.99 because consumers see the price as closer to… Continue Reading

The EU Law on Auditing and the Role of Auditors in the Global Financial Crisis

The EU Law on Auditing and the Role of Auditors in the Global Financial Crisis, Hatice Kubra Kandemir, Durham University – Durham Law School, January 2013. International Journal of Disclosure and Governance, Vol. 10, pp. 213-233, 2013 “In September 2011, the EU Commissioner Michael Bernier explained that “there are weakness in the way the audit… Continue Reading

The Driving Force behind the Boom and Bust in Construction in Europe

The Driving Force behind the Boom and Bust in Construction in Europe, Yan Sun; Pritha Mitra; Alejandro Simone. August 21, 2013 “Summary: This paper studies the factors behind pro-cyclical but widely varying construction shares (as a percent of GDP) across countries, with a strong focus on European countries. Using a dataset covering 48 countries (including… Continue Reading

Assessing the Impact and Phasing of Multi-year Fiscal Adjustment: A General Framework

Assessing the Impact and Phasing of Multi-year Fiscal Adjustment: A General Framework, James Roaf. August 21, 2013 “Summary: This paper provides a general framework to assess the output and debt dynamics of an economy undertaking multi-year fiscal adjustment. The framework allows country-specific assumptions about the magnitude and persistence of fiscal multipliers, hysteresis effects, and endogenous… Continue Reading

Capital Flows are Fickle: Anytime, Anywhere

Capital Flows are Fickle: Anytime, Anywhere – John C Bluedorn; Rupa Duttagupta; Jaime Guajardo; Petia Topalova. August 22, 2013 “Summary: Has the unprecedented financial globalization of recent years changed the behavior of capital flows across countries? Using a newly constructed database of gross and net capital flows since 1980 for a sample of nearly 150… Continue Reading

The Declassification Engine

The Declassification Engine Computational Analysis of Official Secrecy “The declassification engine refers to a set of applications that will provide new forms of access to official documents as well as tools to help interpret them. This toolkit will expand over time. Currently its main projects are the (de)classifier, a tool displaying cable activity over time… Continue Reading

America’s Best-Bang-for-the-Buck Colleges

Washington Monthly, Robert Kelchen: “…we created our “Best Bang for the Buck” ranking—our exclusive list of the colleges in America that do the best job of helping nonwealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices. And it is a pretty exclusive list: out of the 1,572 colleges and universities in our broader rankings, only 349… Continue Reading

EPIC – DHS Facial Recognition System Lacks Privacy Safeguards

“In response to an EPIC FOIA request, the Department of Homeland Security has produced documents revealing that the agency has failed to establish privacy safeguards for “BOSS” (the Biometric Optical Surveillance System), an elaborate system for facial recognition and individual identification. The documents obtained by EPIC indicate that none of the agency’s contracts or statements… Continue Reading