This Week in the News…

Posted: March 7, 2003 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage George Mason received during the past week:

Sunday, March 2, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Ongoing Security Costs May Be Costing The Economy

“A war with Iraq would only heighten security concerns and probably trigger more spending on protection on home. That would be additional money for guards, security devices and procedures that might otherwise be invested in production-boosting technology and workers who generate salable goods and services. ‘It’s a dead-weight loss as far as the economy is concerned,’ said Vernon Smith, a George Mason University professor who won the 2002 Nobel Prize in economics.”

Monday, March 3, The Globe and Mail

The Double Helix as Storyteller and Detective

“The renewed interest in old bones has led to some clashes, however: In the United States, the courts are still trying to decide the fate of a 9,300-year-old skeleton dubbed the Kennewick Man, who is subject of a tug-of-war between the scientists who want to study him and the native community that wants to bury him. But the more studying is done, the more experts say one truth becomes clear: There is far more diversity within ethnic groups than between them. ‘We’re all members of a very small family,’ said Keith McKenney, an associate professor at George Mason University in Virginia, who is working to find descendents of the Inca mummy. ‘If we really understood how closely connected we are, we’d be much more tolerant.'”

Tuesday, March 4, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Al-Qaida Cases Blur Rules on Interrogations

“Some attorneys and human rights officials complain that prisoners may be forced to stand or kneel for hours. Bright lights are never extinguished. Loud music blares. Sleep is denied, sometimes for days, to begin breaking a prisoner’s resistance. The so-called ‘stress-and-duress’ techniques represent the milder forms of torture that may be used in interrogation. Eugene Kontorovich, a George Mason University law professor who studies the constitutionality of investigative techniques, speculates Mohammed is now being subjected to psychological unpleasantries. ‘They’re probably playing up the fact that his friends have ratted him out, that it’s all over,’ Kontorovich said. ‘What we think of torture is not necessarily the most effective way of getting information. People can be trained and determined to resist it. And there are ways of breaking down people’s resolve more effectively than beating them.'”

Tuesday, March 4, The Washington Post

Tuition Politics

“The combination of state aid cuts and tuition ceilings translates into reductions in course offerings, failure to recruit or retain top faculty members, and crimps in scholarly research and local community outreach programs. George Mason University Rector Edwin Meese III has warned that because GMU has a high percentage of in-state students, a cap ‘would unduly penalize this institution,’ which is one of the few schools in the state committed to taking a large proportion of the anticipated 40,000 Virginia high school graduates expected to seek a college education in Virginia over the next eight years.”

Thursday, March 6, The Washington Post

Commuters Crossing Lines; Census Finds Majority Employed Far From Home

Stephen Fuller, a professor at George Mason University who studies the regional economy, said the figures illustrate that job growth has been uneven across the region and that some people cannot afford to live near work. Northern Virginia added more jobs in the ’90s than did Maryland. The Washington region’s increasing job sprawl, he said, makes it more difficult to live near work, especially for two-earner couples or other households with more than one worker. ‘The sense is that the jobs have decentralized faster in the last decade than in previous decades,’ Fuller said. ‘There is no central location anymore.'”

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