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Ian Ramirez
Ian Ramirez

Quack __HOT__

This paper provides an evaluation of the substantive corporate governance mandates of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 that is informed by the relevant empirical accounting and finance literature and the political dynamics that produced the mandates. The empirical literature provides a metric for evaluating the mandates' effectiveness, by facilitating identification of whether specific provisions can be most accurately characterized as efficacious reforms or as quack corporate governance. The learning of the literature, which was available when Congress was legislating, is that SOX's corporate governance provisions were ill-conceived. The political environment explains why Congress would enact legislation with such mismatched means and ends. SOX was enacted as emergency legislation amidst a free-falling stock market and media frenzy over corporate scandals shortly before the midterm congressional elections. The governance provisions, included toward the end of the legislative process in the Senate, were not a focus of any considered attention. Their inclusion stemmed from the interaction between election year politics and the Senate banking committee chairman's response to suggestions of policy entrepreneurs. The scholarly literature at odds with those individuals' recommendations was ignored, while the interest groups whose position was more consistent with the literature - the business community and accounting profession - had lost their credibility and become politically radioactive. The paper's conclusion is that SOX's corporate governance provisions should be stripped of their mandatory force and rendered optional. Other nations, such as the members of the European Union who have been revising their corporation codes, would be well advised to avoid Congress' policy blunder.


Date: TBDTime: TBDRegistration Email: docquack@ebparks.orgLocations: TBDFrom a special interior Regional Park location downstream to the Bay. What to BringWe recommend the following personal protective items for watching breeding and migratory bird activity in a variety of landscape types:Binoculars, water, lunch and trail snacks, outdoors clothing (long pants), hiking shoes/boots (Waterproof footwear), gloves, hat, windbreaker, sweater, jacket, sunglasses, insect repellant, and sunscreen.

Dave "Doc Quack" RienscheWildlife Biologist, Certified Wildlife Biologist East Bay Regional Park DistrictP.O. Box 5381Oakland, CA

"to make a duck sound; utter a harsh, flat, croaking cry," 1610s, earlier quake (late 14c.), variant of quelke (early 14c.), all of echoic origin (compare Middle Dutch quacken, Old Church Slavonic kvakati, Latin coaxare "to croak," Greek koax "the croaking of frogs," Hittite akuwakuwash "frog").

In the same line of Chaucer, various early editions have it as quake, quakke, quak, quat. Frequentative form quackle is attested from 1560s. Middle English on the quakke (14c.) meant "hoarse, croaking." The sense of "talk or advertise noisily and ostentatiously" (1650s) might show influence of quack (n.1). Related: Quacked; quacking.

"medical charlatan, impudent and fraudulent pretender to medical skill," 1630s, short for quacksalver (1570s), from obsolete Dutch quacksalver (modern kwakzalver), literally "hawker of salve," from Middle Dutch quacken "to brag, boast," literally "to croak" (see quack (v.)) + salf "salve," salven "to rub with ointment" (see salve (n.)). As an adjective from 1650s.

"duck sound; a harsh, croaking cry," 1839, from quack (v.). Earlier it meant "hoarseness, croaking" (late 14c.). Quack-quack as a nursery name for a duck is attested by 1865 (quack-quack-quack in that sense is by 1825).

"absurd or fabricated story intended as an imposition," 1851, perhaps 1843, from French canard "a hoax," literally "a duck" (from Old French quanart, probably echoic of a duck's quack); said by Littré to be from the phrase vendre un canard à moitié "to half-sell a duck," thus, perhaps from some long-forgotten joke, "to cheat." But also compare quack (n.1).

"Yong-yi" means "quack" in English, which generally refers to a doctor who does not have good medical skills. In the Ming and Qing dynasties in China, various criticism about "Yong-yi" became popularized, and by the late Qing period, "quacks" had become a serious social issue. The theory of traditional Chinese medicine was developed during the Ming and Qing dynasties, and local medical resources also increased. Moreover, the prevalence of medical book publishing led to the openness and generalization of medical knowledge. As a result, not only the number of doctors increased, but also the number of doctors who lack medical knowledge and clinical experience increased. However, at the outset, "Yong-yi" did not only mean doctors with poor medical skills. "Yong-yi" also reflected conflicts and contradictions between doctors. Doctors consistently criticized quacks in an attempt to maintain their identity as a "good" doctor or a Confucian doctor. In this sense, "Yong-yi" was used among physicians as an expression of discrimination and exclusion. The concept of "quackery" was also determined by the relationship between patients and doctors. In general, itinerant doctors, midwives and shaman doctors were regarded as "Yong-yi"; however, they served the medical needs of various patients. Thus, to some extent, "Yong-yi" were also useful medical resources. On the contrary, in certain situations, "shiyi," physicians who serviced a family for generations and were generally believed to be reliable and as trustworthy doctors, were also labelled as quacks, especially when the patient did not trust them or was not satisfied with the treatment. Therefore, doctors' thoughts about "Yong-yi" did not always coincide with patients' thoughts about "Yong-yi." However, by the late Qing period, the description of quacks in media reports found a singular connotation, and the divergent social image of quacks disappeared. By this time, quacks were uniformly described as ignorant and irresponsible Chinese medicine practitioners. Specifically, in one murder case in which a "Yong-yi" was accused as the murderer, the report unilaterally reported the patient's claims. Consequently, Chinese medicine practitioners who failed in their treatment of patients became labeled as "quack" doctors. In newspaper reports, "Yong-yi" no longer simply referred to individual cases of "quacks" but had come to represent the entirety of the Chinese medicine practitioner community. On the contrary, Western medical doctors who replaced the status of traditional doctors were positively portrayed. Pictorials also had similar perspectives with newspapers, supporting the narrative of the news with ironic drawings and articles. Overall, media reports regarding "Yong-yi" did not focus on reporting facts, but they had the purpose of making quacks a serious social problem.

We develop a theory of quack medicine regulation in Victorian England according to which health professionals faced growing competition from close substitutes: quack medicine vendors. To protect their rents, health professionals organized, lobbied, and won laws granting them a monopoly over the sale of powerful drugs and medicines that contained them, most notably, quack medicines. Our theory explains key features of the regulation that public interest theory does not.

In the 1880s, health professionals made new attempts to bring the sale of poisonous quack medicines under their exclusive control through parliamentary action. A bill advanced by the Pharmaceutical Society in 1881 proposed mandatory labeling of poisonous quack medicines and to restrict their sale to licensed pharmacists (Pharmacy and Poison Laws 1892, p. 104). It was defeated. A bill proposed by the Pharmaceutical Society in 1884 attempted the same (Holloway 1991, p. 247). It also was unsuccessful.

Taken alone, then, these facts of Victorian quack medicine regulation do not clearly recommend one theory over the other. However, other facts relating to that regulation do. Those facts are, at the very least, uncomfortable for the public interest theory of Victorian quack medicine regulation. In contrast, they are accounted for readily by our theory.

The beautiful strains of George Frideric Handel's "Messiah" and Johann Sebastian Bach's "Christmas Oratorio" evoke a very different picture from the dark bond the two composers shared: Each was blinded by botched eye surgery at the hands of a flamboyant quack.

"Taylor was the poster child for 18th century quackery," says Daniel Albert, MD, MS, the author of "Men of Vision," a history of ophthalmology. The book has a chapter on Taylor's colorful, if gruesome, career.

Of course, the risks may have been greater with a charlatan like Taylor. Albert describes him as "the most infamous of all ophthalmic quacks." His arrival into town would be heralded by placards and handbills, and his coach was decorated with paintings of eyeballs and the motto: "Qui dat videre dat viver" (He who gives sight, gives life.)


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