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By Compiled from wire reports by staff / March 24, 2004



Just tell them 'yes!'

There are opinion polls of dubious value ... and then there's the recent satisfaction survey for Southern California Edison, whose 4.5 million customers make it one of the nation's largest electric utilities. Given a base that size, you'd expect some gripes, right? Sure, but the poll found an unusually high percentage of respondents who said they were just delighted with their service. That is, until an anonymous tipster reported that at least 12 employees had hacked into SCE's computer system and changed phone numbers of people to be called ... to those of friends and relatives. Now it may have to forfeit millions of dollars in public funds paid as a bonus for its public image.

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Advanced degree-holders tend to cluster in east

As one might expect, the nation's capital is flush with people who hold postgraduate degrees and work in (or along- side) the federal government. According to new analysis by the Census Bureau, Washington leads all US cities, with 23.6 percent of its 25-and-over population having earned a master's, doctoral, or other advanced degree, such as in law. In fact, the East dominates in a regional sense, too. The states with the highest percentages of graduate and professional degree-holders:

1. Massachusetts 14.5%
2. Maryland 14.1%
3. Connecticut 13.7%
4. Virginia 12.9%
5. New York 12.6%
6. Vermont 12.3%
7. Colorado (tie) New Jersey 11.5%
9. New Mexico 11.0%
10. Illinois 10.6%

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