Saturday, August 4 - Men's 10k Finals Watch the race on NBC, set to air at 4:15 p.m.
Wednesday, August 8 - Men's 5k Preliminaries Watch recaps of the race, anticipated to air on NBC at 10:45-11 a.m. and 1:15-2 p.m., or watch a live video stream of the event at 3 a.m. online at nbcolympics.com.
Saturday, August 11 - Men's 5k Finals The 5k final is anticipated to be shown during NBC's primetime coverage from 8 p.m. to Midnight. A live video stream of the track finals, including the men's 5k, can be seen on nbcolympics.com beginning at 11:45 a.m.
* The title is drawn from Firesign Theatre’s Don’t Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me the Pliers. In middle-age, I’ve found that professional jealousy tends to keep many people from tooting the horn for others, so if I toot my own horn here at vX, at least I’ll try not to take it too seriously.
Dave Christensen is our accounting chair. His current research is on moral courage: how do you get accountants who know what the ethical thing to do is, to actually have the courage to do it. One method that has some success is to push ethical thinking frequently, and on a small scale.
Lately, he’s taken to writing quotes or aphorisms on classroom whiteboards, and leaving them there. Stuff like this:
David Christensen, I have written this editorial because I care about you. That is why I want you to seek help for your abuse of posting inspirational quotes by philosophers of old upon the white boards and bulletins of various classrooms in the Dixie Leavitt Business Building. That is why I have scheduled this intervention.
You are the distinguished Chair of the Accounting Department. You have published over 50 peer-reviewed academic articles. You are an accomplished and highly-skilled expert and educator, who is respected by both faculty and students. The habit of posting inspirational quotes, however, has brought about unhappiness to the people who frequent the classrooms you have visited.
Ever since you have been posting quotes about success and its negative correlation to academic fraud, it has made my time in the business building marginally less enriching than before. I have been taxed by my concern, and the concerns voiced by my fellow students, about how the quotes seem pretentious and passive-aggressive in the context in which they have been featured.
Emotionally, the quotes have been distressing. I have put away some unretainable few minutes, which I might have spent learning, worrying about the potential guilt that I wasn’t feeling over the honor that I didn’t not have after being addressed by the quotes. Mentally, the quotes that have been posted over my classes have made it difficult to concentrate, as I have had to listen to my fellow students complain about the precious natural resources that have been wasted to provide the paper on which Sophocles’ thoughts about excellence and honor have been printed.
I am concerned should the onslaught of inspiration continue, that myself and others of the student body will face unfortunate consequences. I fear that students will become disillusioned with any discourse on academic integrity after having been bombarded with anecdotes about honesty. I also fear that it will create a discord with the business, finance, accounting and economics students and their future dealings with Sophocles and his peers. Sophocles is a staple to the canon of Greek tragedian playwrights, and seeing students being negatively preconditioned to the genius of his work fills my heart with despair. It would truly be a tragedy if students hated the implications of Oedipus the King not for the usual revulsion they have toward its incestuous relationships, but instead because they discover a latent distaste after their honor was impugned on a whiteboard.
Please consider a different approach in your desires for students to pursue excellence through integrity and defer them from cheating. I hope you will respond favorably to the sentiments that have been offered today.
The article only includes people in cell 1. But, if you really wanted to assess whether missions were helpful, you’d need to do a few things. You’d start by making an estimate of the count or proportion of how many people were in each cell. Then you’d want to do some basic data analysis: is ratio formed by taking the value you put in 1 and dividing by the value you put in 2 larger than doing the same to cells 3 and 4? Lastly, you’d actually want to firm that up with an actual hypothesis test.
You should note that doing those first two bits of data analysis is not that hard, and certainly not beyond what is often published in a data intensive magazine like Bloomberg Businessweek. The fact that they didn’t do this is telling.
Second, there is the problem endogeneity problem. What a reader really wants to know about a topic like this is whether going on a mission increases your chances of being a CEO. The endogeneity problem, in short, is what if there is a third factor that helps you be successful at both? Like charisma. If you don’t include charisma in your analysis, then you might be inclined to think that going on a mission increases your chances of making it to CEO, but if you did include charisma, you might find that there is very little relationship left over from missions to CEO positions.
I’m not saying that there isn’t a relationship, but I am saying that there is really basic econometrics left undone here.
* The online article missed one of the coolest parts of the print article: the marginalia listing Mormon CEO’s. They are listed in this separate article entitled “Mormons In Business”.
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