* WINNERS: The investment class at Ohio State University - and the 10 students involved in it. Investing school funds under school supervision, the students out-guessed the stock market in a big way. During the past year, their investments have returned more than $1 million. As word of this accomplishment gets around, Ohio State had better brace itself for a flood of enrollments in that particular course.
* WINNERS: Another group of investors - the trustees of Johns Hopkins University. This week they decided to drop investments in firms that make cigarettes or tobacco products. Let's hope their example gives an idea to other universities that still make money from the misery caused by tobacco.LOSERS: The many Americans who seem to be falling for consumer scams pegged to the war in the Persian Gulf. Based on phony appeals to patriotism, the frauds uncovered so far range from selling cookies supposedly to help veterans to pushing new life insurance policies even though the troops automatically get life insurance.
To deal with potential abuses, the Federal Trade Commission recommends: Don't give cash but make any contribution through a check or money order. Don't give out your credit card number over the telephone. Check out any organizations to which you plan to give by calling the Better Business Bureau.
LOSERS: Left-handed people. For years they seemed to be clear winners on the basis of studies showing they tend to be a bit more intelligent than average. But now a study at the University of British Columbia indicates that, on average, the left-handed tend to live nine fewer years than right-handed individuals.
* WINNER: Four-year-old Joshua Matts of San Jose, Calif. After watching a TV program about latchkey kids dialing 911 in an emergency, Joshua used the phone to summon an ambulance in time to save an aide at his day-care center after she suffered a seizure and collapsed. The big winner, of course, is Virginia Green.
* WINNER: The taxpayers. And James Greene of Wheeling, W. Va., who showed this week that it's possible for the individual to win out against the federal bureaucracy though the battle may drag on to unconscionable lengths of time. After battling red tape for eight years, Greene finally won permission to take his sister out of a Washington, D.C., hospital where she has spent more than 40 years in a vegetative condition. Costs of caring for her at a skilled nursing home in Wheeling will come to less than a quarter of the $18,672 a month the taxpayers were paying for her care at a hospital in the District of Columbia. At last, a victory for common sense over bureaucratic inertia.