Tuesday Links: Lowballing OSHA, Lowenstein, SIGTARP

The New York Times reports that employers systematically under-report workplace injuries, citing a new GAO report. It says OSHA will adopt the GAO’s recommendations, including “requiring inspectors to interview employees during all audits to check the accuracy of employer-provided injury data.” Also:

But the G.A.O. report cited several academic studies that found that OSHA data failed to include up to two-thirds of all workplace injuries and illnesses.

Would that it would have cited some journalistic studies, or were there any? Also, it would have been nice if the Times had fleshed out the studies’ findings some.

— Bloomberg’s Roger Lowenstein has some suggestions on six reasons for the crisis and six ways to fix them, and notes that “Financial reform seems to be flailing. Legislation has been proposed, but it is complicated and diffuse. Most of the proposed fixes are incremental changes that don’t seem likely to prevent a future bubble.”

The Epicurean Dealmaker disagrees with that Yves Smith post I pointed to earlier on what she called the weakness of the TARP overseer’s report on the AIG fiasco:

I read the SIGTARP report and find complete confirmation of two important points. First, the New York Fed, led by our current Secretary of the Treasury, botched the rescue of AIG so completely and so pathetically that it does border, as Yves says, on criminal incompetence. Second, the Fed had enough negotiating leverage in the entire affair to have substantially lessened the amount of taxpayer funds it ending up paying to AIG’s counterparties, to the tune of billions and billions of dollars. A competent and motivated negotiator could have extracted billions of dollars in concessions with little else.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at rc2538@columbia.edu. Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum.