Winner: Despite the poor economy, the University of Utah was able to raise 16 percent more in research funding this year than last, according to a report this week in this newspaper. That translates into $49 million more for research in science, medicine and engineering. We know what you're thinking, but only $1.5 million of it came through the federal stimulus. Clearly, the U. is doing the type of research, with the type of researchers, that attracts money and attention, and that's a good thing.
Loser: The International Olympic Committee is about to be guilty of a horrible inconsistency. Recently, it rejected the idea of allowing women to compete in ski jumping, breaking the hearts of many gifted athletes who train and compete in Utah. Now, sources say, the IOC is soon going to decide to allow women to compete in boxing during the summer games. This is stunningly ironic considering the first objections to women's ski jumping were that it would harm the delicate female anatomy. That's the whole point of boxing, whether it involves men or women.
Winner: If you moved to this region from elsewhere, you're going to be happier for it the older you get. At least, that's the conclusion of a new Pew Research Center study on how senior citizens fare in different parts of the country. The West was the clear winner. Fully 78 percent of Westerners 65 and older said they don't feel old. Only 67 percent of their peers in the rest of the nation said the same. About 72 percent of Westerners said they are in excellent or good health, compared with 63 percent elsewhere. This may not be the fountain of youth. It just feels like it, and that counts for something.
Loser: A sure way to send Americans into shock would be to tell them the Postal Service is running a surplus, wants to reduce the price of postage and will begin delivering twice daily again. Instead, we joined the nation in a collective yawn this week as the Postal Service announced an estimated $7 billion deficit this year and said it wants to eliminate Saturday delivery. The Postal Service exists to keep commerce and information flowing to even the far reaches of the nation, but it is becoming increasingly irrelevant in a world of the Internet and private parcel services. The answer is to revamp the service, not to slowly kill it.