FOX NEWS POLL Most don't think founders would be proud of US   
          Makeup artist Tiffany Ervin shares summer beauty secrets   

Tiffany Ervin is the founder and lead makeup artist for Makeup Royalty in Atlanta, Georgia, a city enjoying popularity as a film production mecca. Currently, there are as many as 50 productions working in and around the city, and Ervin is providing makeup artistry for as many of them as she can, including media for networks such as BET, Bravo and VH1.…
          Episode 79: interview with Toby Norman, cofounder & CEO of simprints   
Simprints is a nonprofit tech company from the University of Cambridge that is building an affordable, secure, rugged, open-source fingerprint system that works in the world’s toughest settings. According to the World Bank, an estimated 1.1 billion people, the majority of them living in Asia and Africa, struggle to access basic services and rights due...
          VG247 reinvigorated with new staff line-up   
Matt Martin takes editor-in-chief role, Shabana Arif and Sherif Saed join full-time, co-founder Garratt leaves site. VG247 has strengthened its staff as it prepares to crush the last half of 2017. Matt Martin, who joined the site in January 2014, takes on the new role of editor-in-chief and will lead the biggest team the site […]
          Comment on A postcard from the past: Shaw House and Lido by N Narayanan   
Thanks again Mr Jerome Lim, for this latest post on Orchard Road. Like the proverbial bad penny, here I turn up again (please feel free not to put up my comments if for any reason they are unwelcome, but believe me they are made purely as incidental to your commentary) 'A nation of shopkeepers' is reportedly a not-too-complimentary phrase referring to England going back to 1794 (Wikipedia). Much in the same vein, one could say we Singaporeans could be dubbed 'a nation of shoppers'. 'Orchard Road' is apparently the 'flavour of the moment' with pleas being made 'to restore the vibrancy of the area', mainly by those whose memories &/or experiences go back to more recent times. True, their attitudes may be reflected in the phrase 'Orchard Road, Singapore: Asia's Most Famous Shopping Street ..." as one description goes. But time was when it was less 'glitzy' and a more sedate and respectable upper-middle-class residential area, as would be fitting for its proximity to the 'Governor's House' - in colonial times - and 'The Istana - President's Residence' since Independence. In sharp contrast, Orchard Road has today earned the distinction of being 'Every Shopper's Paradise', with much of the credit being accorded to those who have developed the area. While giving them their due, I personally find it sad that in this context, all-forgotten now is my then-boss the late Mr Moshe J Nassim, founder of the Auctioneers & Estate Agents firm 'Nassim & Co Ltd'. Circa 1950 he persuaded the Hongkong Bank to buy the land where MacDonald House now stands, confidently assuring them 'Orchard Road will be the place of future Singapore'.He was eminently qualified in his observations, as he had been resident in the area from pre-WWII years. Surely Mr Nassim needs to be remembered for his foresight. In property matters, he was largely responsble in opening up the then undeveloped ulu areas of Frankel Estate, Loyang and Sarimbun. Returning to 'Orchard Road, quite by accident, I just stumbled upon a video blog titled 'Singapore in 1956' - MichaelRogge. 'Published on Jun 19, 2013 -- Singapore as a world port more than half a century ago. I see bankers walking around in white tropical suits as I did myself at the time in Hong Kong...' (Source/Link: ) The clear views of the Orchard Road/Dhoby Ghaut corner are stunning, as too Union Building (now Tung Centre) at Collyer Quay, and these, along with others in the clip, will surely evoke nostalgic memories in those who were here in Singapore more than six decades back. For a more recent appreciative view, this post ( sums up:- ''Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned shopper, Orchard Road, a 2.2km shopping belt, is the place for retail therapy. 'Who'd have thought that over 150 years ago, Orchard Road was just a small lane lined with fruit orchards, nutmeg plantations and pepper farms. A look back By the 1850s, these humble origins had changed. People moved in, along with outdoor hawker centres, wet markets, cemeteries, temples, and even an open-air laundry basin. It was only in 1903 that Orchard Road’s shops sprung up, with Singapore's first supermarket, where The Centrepoint now stands. The first department store was opened by local merchant C.K Tang in 1958 on a plot of land facing a cemetery. When it was demolished in 1982, it was replaced by the landmark Tang Plaza, which houses a local department store and hotel. In the 1970s, cinemas, a bowling alley and ever larger malls followed, and Orchard Road’s reputation as an entertainment hub grew. Spoilt for choice Today, Orchard Road is flanked by iconic shopping malls, restaurants and hotels, choc-a-bloc with retail, dining and entertainment choice for every taste and budget. Designer threads, fast fashion, upscale restaurants, ethnic wares, art galleries and relaxed hangouts – you name it, Orchard Road has it. Here’s a tip: while the almond and jambu trees are no more, huge angsana trees lining the large pedestrian mall give ample shade from the blazing sun – making this still a nice place to stroll'''' Thanks for the memories!
          Elon Musk digs giant hole under Los Angeles and will let people put their cars in it   
Tesla and SpaceX founder hopes that the huge holes can let people travel across America more quickly
           Leon founder talks about bold expansion programme    
A new deal with Roadchef will see two Leon restaurants open at service stations on the M4 and M5, we speak to the healthy fast food chains founder John Vincent.
          Kickstarter success RuuviTag is now available, first batch almost gone overnight   

Kickstarter success RuuviTag is now available, first batch almost gone overnight

A Finnish startup by the name Ruuvi introduced its Bluetooth beacon project to the internet in a Kickstarter campaign last summer. In mere hours the campaign was funded and in the end it crushed its goal with pre-orders exceeding $170 000.

Now the company has officially released the product, which according to their press release came quicker than expected. Since yesterday's launch RuuviTag has been selling like hotcakes. The founder of Ruuvi, Lauri Jämsä, told us that the demand has been so high that the supply has almost been depleted.

In the upcoming batches the company aims more and more in the B2B markets where orders might exceed a thousand units.

RuuviTag is a small Bluetooth 4.2 beacon that has radio and NFC connectivity as well as a multitude of sensors that can measure temperature, relative air humidity, air pressure, and acceleration. It can be used as a Eddystone or iBeacon, and the RuuviLab community has already created a variety of applications, including the likes of portable weather station and vehicle locator. Of course because it's open source platform anyone can join in.

You can buy RuuviTag's from the company's website where they sell for 69 euros (approx. $79) per 3 beacons plus shipping.

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          Shocase Selects MBLM’s Claude Salzberger as Company Advisor   

Claude Salzberger is Founder and president of MBLM and will provide senior counsel to Shocase members

(PRWeb May 06, 2015)

Read the full story at

          Jeff Bezos: Amazon's Whole Foods deal has 4 'dreamy' enticements   
How Whole Foods fits in with Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos' four-factor acquisition strategy.

          As the dust settles: Russian authorities move against protesters and campaigners   

New evidence of police violations against protesters emerges, and regional authorities take aim at Alexei Navalny's campaign offices. 

Conditions for people detained at anti-corruption protests have been poor. Image: Polina Kostyleva.

We continue our partnership with OVD-Infoan NGO that monitors politically-motivated arrests in Russia. Every Friday, we bring you the latest information on freedom of assembly. 

We have collected and analysed a large number of reports of violations by Russian police officers at anti-corruption rallies held on 12 June. Now we are able to say with certainty there have been 109 violations. Police officers exceeded the permitted time for administrative detention, wrote official reports with numerous mistakes, and did not allow lawyers to visit those detained. In one of the St Petersburg police stations, a detainee contracted pneumonia after spending the night in a cold cell. This was despite the fact that he had warned the police officers he was in poor health and should not get cold. The list of violations with legal commentaries can be seen here.

This week a number of individuals requested political asylum abroad. Krasnodar artists Lusiney Dzhanyan and Aleksei Knedlyakovsky requested asylum in Sweden. The artists said that their telephones had been tapped, and in 2013 Dzhanyan was dismissed from Krasnodar University of Culture for supporting Pussy Riot and exhibiting in a gallery owned by Marat Gelman. But it’s not only those who create modern art who can fall victim to persecution. Children’s drawings in chalk can also evoke the dissatisfaction of the authorities. Mikhail Petrov, a martial arts trainer from Pskov, has left Russia because he feared persecution by the authorities. It is thought the authorities’ interest in the trainer was related to the fact that he and his students had drawn anti-military drawings on the walls of buildings belonging to a military air assault division. He has requested political asylum in Estonia. 

Supporters of Alexei Navalny continue to be persecuted. In the town of Cherepovets, writer and journalist Elena Kolyadina was dismissed by the newspaper Golos Cherepovtsa for giving a lecture to staff of Navalny’s local election campaign office. In the Siberian city of Barnaul, the coordinator of the campaign office was injured with a knife, while earlier someone set fire to one of the office’s windows. In Vladimir, the local branch of the Russian Television and Radio Broadcasting Network asked its chief engineer to resign because he had headed Navalny’s local campaign office. Meanwhile, in Rostov-on-Don a car belonging to the head of Navalny’s office was covered with paint and its tyres were punctured.

The Investigative Committee completed its investigation into one more defendant in the “26 March case”. Dmitry Krepkin is charged with using force against a police officer during the anti-corruption protest in Moscow. Krepkin maintains his innocence. Moreover, he has said that he was himself assaulted at the time of his detention at the 26 March protest. Doctors at the emergency medical centre recorded bruising all over his body. He had been struck at least six times.   

The pre-trial detention of mathematician Dmitry Bogatov was extended until 31 August. Bogatov has been charged with incitement to riot on the grounds that he had posted appeals on the forum to go out on to Red Square on 2 April 2017 under the pseudonym of “Airat Bashirov”. The appeals were sent from Bogatov’s IP address. However, since Bogatov operates a Tor exit node, any user could have posted the materials using his IP.

Thank you              

Thanks to everyone who continues to support us. Find out how you can help us here.

For more information on OVD-Info, read this article from the organisation's founder on how OVD is breaking the civil society mould here

'Read On' Sidebox: 

OVD-Info is a crowdfunded organisation. Find out how you can help them here.

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          iPhone turns 10   

A man uses his iPhone during a preview event at the new Apple Store Williamsburg in Brooklyn, New York, US.

Apple Inc.’s iPhone turned 10 yesterday, evoking memories of a rocky start for the device that ended up doing most to start the smartphone revolution and stirring interest in where  it will go from here. Apple has sold more than one billion iPhones since June 29, 2007, but the first iPhone, which launched without an App Store and was restricted to the Inc network, was limited compared to today’s version. After sluggish initial sales, Apple slashed the price to spur holiday sales that year. “The business model for year one of the iPhone was a disaster,” Tony Fadell, one of the Apple developers of the device, told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday. “We pivoted and figured it out in year two.” The very concept of the iPhone came as a surprise to some of Apple’s suppliers a decade ago, even though Apple, led by CEO Steve Jobs, had already expanded beyond computers with the iPod. “We still have the voicemail from Steve Jobs when he called the CEO and founder here,” said David Bairstow at Skyhook, the company that supplied location technology to early iPhones. “He thought he was being pranked by someone in the office and it took him two days to call Steve Jobs back.” The iPhone...
          Public challenged to drop single-use plastic in July   

There will eventually be more plastic than fish in the oceans if our consumption is not curbed, the founder of Plastic Free July warns.

          Yardsellr, The “eBay For Facebook,” Becomes The Latest Casualty In Social & Local Commerce   
 In the fall of 2011, we caught up with social commerce startup, Yardsellr, which the founders claimed at the time had grown into a community of over 5 million people. The Facebook-based social commerce platform was listing 6K new items for sale each day (at the time) and had over 120K items for sale in total. This, by the way, came after the company raised $5 million from Accel in 2010.… Read More
          Operator of Illegal Bitcoin Exchange Sentenced to Prison   

Anthony Murgio, 33, of Tampa, Florida, has been sentenced to five and a half years in prison for running a Bitcoin exchange connected to hackers. The exchange was used to launder more than $10 million worth of funds, authorities reported.

Both Murgio and Yuri Lebedev, 39, of St. John’s, Florida, operated through a fraudulent company called “Collectables Club.” According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the illegal Bitcoin exchange used the firm’s misleading name to open financial accounts at banks pretending to be a “members-only association of individuals who discussed, bought, and sold collectible items and memorabilia.” Murgio and Lebedev, along with other co-conspirators, violated bank and credit card company rules and regulations by “deliberately misidentifying and miscoding customers’ credit and debit card transactions.”

“Lies conceived and deployed by Murgio permeated every aspect of’s operation, including its use of front companies, like Collectables Club and Currency Enthusiasts, to try to conceal the illicit nature of the operation,” the Department of Justice stated in its sentencing submission.

On January 9, Murgio pled guilty to three counts regarding operating, which processed over $10 million worth of illegal Bitcoin transactions. Murgio ran the Bitcoin exchange between October 2013 and July 2015 for Gery Shalon, 33, an Israeli citizen who was responsible for hacking at least nine companies, including JPMorgan Chase, E-Trade Financial Corporation and Dow Jones. sold bitcoins that came from illegal online transactions, such as victim payments to ransomware attackers who sought to launder the cryptocurrencies clean.

“I screwed up badly and made serious mistakes and misjudgments,” Murgio said, showing remorse, to U.S. District Judge Alison J. Nathan at his sentencing.

Shalon, along with Ziv Orenstein, 42, compromised data on approximately 76 million household customers and 7 million businesses by hacking the nine companies. U.S. officials described their operation as a “diversified criminal conglomerate” responsible for the largest theft of valuable information from a U.S. bank. The compromised data included the names of customers, along with email addresses and phone numbers. Authorities collected evidence stating that Murgio exchanged cash for the bitcoins of Shalon’s criminal gang. Israeli police arrested Shalon and Orenstein in July 2015, and they were extradited to the United States in June 2016. Both are facing serious charges, including aggravated identity theft, wire fraud and money laundering.

“Mr. Murgio led an effort based on ambition and greed,” and constructed on a “pyramid of lies,” Judge Nathan said during the sentencing hearing at the Manhattan federal court.

On March 17, a Manhattan jury found Lebedev and his co-conspirator Trevon Gross, 52, of New Jersey, guilty of charges connected to a bribery scheme in an attempt to hide the illegal activities of from financial institutes and regulators. Both of the defendants are facing a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. Judge Nathan scheduled the sentencing hearing of Lebedev and Gross for July 20, 2017.

Murgio’s father, Michael Murgio, 66, was also involved in the case. In October, the father plead guilty to “making a false statement to the National Credit Union Administration on behalf of his son.” By making a plea deal, Michael Murgio managed to avoid additional charges in the case, including “conspiracy to make corrupt payments with intent to influence an officer of a financial institution and making corrupt payments.” Judge Nathan sentenced the elder Murgio to one year of probation along with a $12,000 fine.

The FBI arrested both Lebedev and Murgio on July 23, 2015, for “running an unlicensed bitcoin exchange with the goal of helping individuals launder money.”

Despite the prosecution’s request for 10 to 12 years and seven months behind bars, the Manhattan federal court sentenced Murgio to five and a half years in prison. According to Reuters, Judge Nathan considered Murgio’s “generosity to friends and support to his family” and imposed a prison sentence half as long as the prosecutor recommended.

Judge Nathan has scheduled a hearing on September 1 to decide on the amount of fines, forfeiture and restitution Murgio has to pay to the state. The operator of the illegal Bitcoin exchange remains free on bail.

The post Operator of Illegal Bitcoin Exchange Sentenced to Prison appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

          Decent Launches Global Media Distribution Platform   
Decent Launch

Free and open communication has long been an essential component of a successful democracy. Unfortunately, money, power and influence over time have stifled today’s media environment adversely impacting both content producers and consumers alike.

In an effort to democratize creative content, DECENT has officially launched its blockchain-based, global media distribution platform. The name is an acronym for Decentralized Network; Encrypted & Secure; Content Distribution System; Elimination of 3rd Parties; New Way of Online Publishing; Timestamped Data Records.

Designed to bring more transparency and fairness to the media industry, DECENT allows artists to seamlessly distribute digital content for immediate payment and without hefty fees. Peer-to-peer in its orientation, consumers decide the merits of a certain piece of content posted through a Yelp-like community rating system. The content, however, cannot be censored or removed.

This blockchain initiative endeavors to disrupt the legacy world of media distribution by allowing artists more freedom and control over the ownership and distribution of their content, all without compromising on security. It represents a potential gamechanger for the massive global media and content distribution industry — one that’s estimated to grow from $1.7 trillion in 2016 to over $2 trillion in 2019.

DECENT was founded in 2016 by two friends, Matej Michalko and Matej Boda, from Slovakia. It sprouted from a shared vision that blockchain technology could fuel a coordinated system of digital content publishing and sharing throughout the world.

Funding for DECENT was fueled by an ICO campaign last summer, which raised more than 5,881 BTC, at that time valued at $4.2 million USD. There were 4,300 ICO participants in total and no other key funding partners.

Michalko recounted the journey leading up to his own personal discovery of blockchain technology and its potential uses for the content distribution space. “I’ve been extensively involved in Bitcoin since 2011, even mining it from my own laptop at the beginning. I quickly realized that the innovative technology behind Bitcoin had the potential to change the modern world.”

When Michalko started to delve further into blockchain technology, he found a seemingly endless list of use cases the new technology could support. “I became determined to use blockchain technology to create something revolutionary that would be beneficial for people on a global scale. A short time later ongoing discussions between myself and our future co-founder Matej Boda quickly led to DECENT being born.”

He says that DECENT Network is a reaction to the issues that the majority of content producers face nowadays in the entertainment and media industry. “There is too much artificial complexity and too many barriers in the industry affecting both the access to market and income of the content owners.”

DECENT’S digital model allows artists to distribute any form of content, including written, music, videos, ebooks and pictures. These distribution channels are free of third-party influence, meaning that artists can also manage their intellectual property rights and set their own pricing.

One of the innovative adaptations that distinguishes DECENT from other blockchain platforms is the network’s reputation management system. This allows content creators who share their digital work on the platform to build a lifetime reputation, based on ratings from those who purchase content on the platform. DECENT Network also allows content creators to instantly receive payment when someone downloads their content, without any middleman interference.

Michalko believes that DECENT can break the trajectory in which a majority of power is concentrated in the hands of a few players controlling the industry. “Artists, filmmakers and writers lose control over their work and depend on the mercy of the ‘big guys.’ We designed DECENT Network to do away with all that and bring more transparency and fairness to the digital content industry.”

DECENT estimates that writers, for example, lose a healthy 30–75 percent chunk of their earnings when publishing with Amazon. Similarly, musicians, through licensing agreements, lose around 30 percent when selling a track on iTunes. Blockchain technology therefore serves as a mechanism that helps writers and musicians keep more money, while connecting with their audiences directly.

Michalko says that artists will be paid for their downloaded content through DECENT’s own cryptocurrency called “DCT,” which will be launched together with DECENT Network. Other payment options, he says, will be available in the future. “Artists will no longer have to wait months before seeing a penny from their work. And at the time of launch, DECENT Network will be a completely free-of-charge service for artists.”

Michalko hopes that by  2020, DECENT Network will have become the number one worldwide media sharing platform. “We hope to bring more transparency and fairness to the digital content industry for both creators and consumers. I hope that with our launch people will realize the advantage of DECENT Network over other content distribution platforms.”

The post Decent Launches Global Media Distribution Platform appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

          Abe Lederman gets in the (mobile) groove   
Abe Lederman, founder and CEO of blog sponsor Deep Web Technologies, recently got a couple of exposures at MobileGroove, a site which provides analysis and commentary on mobile search, mobile advertising, and social media. The two MobileGroove articles cover Deep Web Technologies’ Biznar mobile federated search app. Mobile Search App Review & Road Test: Biznar […]
          TS172:50 Shades,Grammys,Matt Moore, Frozen Men   
Are you seeing 50 Shades? Did you see what Kanye did to Beck at the Grammys? Bryan and Erin did, and they have some soft opinions on both of them. Plus, an ex-gay blogger named Matt Moore defended the conservative church's views on gays by saying "we're not as bad as ISIS." And hedge fund founder Jonathan Hoenig went on Fox News to say that government intrusion with vaccines would lead to forced abortion. Fun? Fun.    Subscribe and Rate Us! iTunes Tweet Us!  @gibblertron & @bryansafi Use the Hashtag #tspod Email Us! Like Us! Throwing Shade Facebook Page Old School Listen! RSS Feed
          Move to block Nicole’s candidacy   

Legal moves have been initiated against the Congress of the People (COP) giving the party until today to halt the candidacy of Nicole Dyer-Griffith in the party’s July 9 leadership election.

If not, court proceedings will commence to secure this, according to a pre-action protocol letter from attorney Alvin Ramroop to COP↔Leader Dr Anirudh Mahabir and COP↔general secretary Clyde Weatherhead. It was sent on Tuesday. Responses were sought from them by yesterday but a requested extension shifted that deadline to today.

Griffith -Dyer is contesting the poll along with Carolyn Seepersad- Bachan and Sharon Gopaul- McNichol.

However, attorney Ramroop, representing COP member Kirt Francis , a former executive officer, wrote the party regarding alleged unlawful ratification of new members and ineligibility of new members to vote at/ to contest leadership election.

The letter claimed COP’s ratification of Dyer-Griffith’s membership in COP↔was null and void since it didn’t meet party constitutional rules. It called for the party to bar Dyer- Griffith from contesting or voting in the election and to have systems in place for a national executive to be elected.

Mahabir said, “I’m not commenting on any letter or whether we received it..... we have no reason to postpone the election at this time,”

McNichol, who said she’d heard of the legal moves , but was not part of it , said she resigned as COP deputy leader and from the COP’s interim “lead team” on February 13 following concerns on “many matters including unorthodox” procedures.

However ,support for Dyer-Griffith has come from Opposition↔Senator Rodger Samuel who said, Her candidacy brings freshness to the party’s helm and she has the propensity to draw youths.,”

COP’s founder, Winston Dookeran, said Dyer- Griffith contacted him on Tuesday asking to speak with her and he confirmed he would be speaking with her .

On Monday, Carolyn Seepersad- Bachan indicated she had support from Dookeran. He’d endorsed her in the 2014 leadership poll.

Dookeran,who’s working overseas, told the T&T Guardian on Wednesday, “Carolyn did speak to me about her candidacy and I told her that I was happy there is a contest and that she has offered herself to stay in the politics. “

“Yesterday (Tuesday), Nicole e-mailed me a request to talk, and I will be more than pleased to do so. Other than that, I have been very much out of T&T, and do hope that the COP may again initiate a healthy, not fake, political narrative that touches the young persons of our country. Although, I am now far off, my hope is that a ‘team effort’ will emerge in our politics.”

Former leader Prakash Ramadhar said he didn’t think former leaders “should get involved in elections save in extreme circumstances , so if I have personal views, I’m not sharing them. But I won’t allow the party to fall,”

“Many clamoured for leadership for years, but weren’t willing to do the work and criticised without assisting. I saw it fit for those clamouring to take leadership to see what improvements they may or can bring until the next election.”

“ I learned we must always bring together all who are interested in improving citizens’ lives. That includes people you may not wish to befriend, but if we have a common goal, I’m willing to work with anyone on ideals COP espouses. In politics, you have the good, the bad and the ugly and you have to be able to work with as many to achieve power to make the necessary changes.”

          WPWeekly Episode 273 – Mental Health Awareness With Bridget Willard and Ed Finkler   
The month of May is Mental Health Awareness month. On this episode, Ed Finkler, founder of Open Sourcing Mental Illness (OSMI), and Bridget Willard, Marketing Manager for WordImpress, join me to raise awareness of mental health. We start the show by discussing what mental health is and what it means (more...)
          WPWeekly Episode 272 – Interview With James Farmer, Co-Founder and CEO of Incsub   
On this episode of WordPress Weekly, I’m joined by James Farmer, co-founder and CEO of Incsub. Farmer has been involved in the WordPress community for 11 years and in that time, he and I have butted heads, mildly speaking. Last year, Farmer looked back at the last 10 years of being a WordPress (more...)
          WPWeekly Episode 269 – Interview With Daniel Ha, CEO and Co-founder of Disqus   
In this episode, Marcus Couch and I are joined by Daniel Ha, CEO and co-founder of Disqus. Ha explains why he created the service, what his thoughts are on large sites disabling comments, and the state of comments on the web. We also discuss the company’s monetization strategies and what (more...)
          Arkane co-founder Raphael Colantonio: "Imagine not having a vacation for 18 years"   

Arkane co-founder Raphael Colantonio has expanded on his shock decision to leave the Dishonored and Prey developer, suggesting he's burnt out by years of triple-A development.

Colantonio, who left Arkane after a whopping 18 years at the studio, told an audience at the Spanish conference Gamelab today he needed a proper holiday after over a decade of shipping high-profile video games.

"Well it's a mixed bag of emotions because of course I love Arkane, I love Bethesda and it's been 18 years of very fascinating adventures and some super-hard times, because as you know we were independent and we almost went out of business several times," he said on-stage.

Read more…

          The story behind the 26-year-old Mega Drive basketball game getting £8000 bids on eBay   

In 1991, Electronic Arts released a basketball game for the Mega Drive called Lakers versus Celtics and the NBA Playoffs. Unremarkable, you might think. But, 26 years later, it's now on eBay and attracting bids above £8000.

Why? On the face of it, there's nothing particularly special about Lakers versus Celtics and the NBA Playoffs. But when you dig into the detail, you discover there was something special about its release - or lack of, it turns out.

David Amor, co-founder of now defunct Brighton developer Relentless Software, put up the PAL version of Lakers versus Celtics on eBay, unaware it would soon set the retro video game collection community aflutter. With four days left of the auction, the listing has seen 40 bids, the latest of which is a whopping £8300.

Read more…

          "When you embrace your truth, you realize your purpose.” David Angelo, Soul Purpose 2017   

Ever since I was a kid, I've always believed in a voice that's been with us long before we were born. It's a voice that gives us permission to believe that we are bigger than any challenge. Call it what you will: God, source, energy or gut - point is, this voice, whether we know it or not, is who we really are. It's our authentic self beyond all of life's conditioning. It took me a while to make sense of the voice, but as I look back and connect the dots, I can see what happened when I listened to the voice and when I didn't. In doing so, it helped me realize my own infinite power. It has helped me achieve some pretty amazing things, from starting my own company to launching a non-profit, to inspiring my two daughters to fearlessly take on their own challenges. It all centers around a very simple philosophy called Brave.

Brave is not about charging blindly into the fray or jumping out of an airplane. It's about having the courage to be who you are and living that truth in business and life. When you embrace your truth, you realize your purpose.

My purpose is to help as many people and brands awaken their authentic voice and in doing so realize what they've known all along: that we are all Brave and are capable of overcoming any obstacle and achieving greatness. When we realize this, our inner and outer growth become one in the same.

- David Angelo, Founder, Chairman, David&Goliath, to speak at Soul Purpose 2017

          US Boutique Unveils New Fund after Vanguard Split   
From Citywire Granahan Investment Management has re-launched its US Discoveries fund in a Ucits format three months after its split from Vanguard which saw the top-performing strategy liquidated. The Boston-based asset manager launched the US Small Cap Discoveries fund on June 30 and, for the next 90 days, investors in the previous incarnation will be able to invest in the founders share[Read More...]
          American Pravda: Alexander Cockburn and the British Spies   
About a decade ago I'd gotten a little friendly with the late Alexander Cockburn, one of America's premier radical journalists and the founder of Counterpunch, a leading leftist webzine. With virtually all of America's mainstream media outlets endlessly cheerleading for the total insanity of our Iraq War, Counterpunch was a port in the storm, and...
          Congratulations New Java Champion Bauke Scholtz   

Welcome New Java Champion Bauke Scholtz

Bauke Scholtz is a member of JSF 2.3 Expert Group and the co-founder of the JSF helper library OmniFaces. In 2015, OmniFaces won the Duke's Choice award. The source for OmniFaces is available under his github handle:

Bauke is also the co-founder of, a popular new social search engine built with Java EE 7. Zeef's content relies on contributors' expertise and their status in the community. Bauke’s page has links to the most relevant JSF information Adam Bien wrote a detailed blog about the inner workings of Zeef.

Known as BalusC,  Bauke ranks third in the user reputation ranking of Stackoverflow with nearly 17,000 answers. Bauke blogs about JSF, Java EE, and Java EE frameworks at He was one of the heroes of Java in Markus Eisele’s series and was interviewed in 2012. Follow him on Twitter @OmniFaces

Java Champions are an exclusive group of passionate Java technology and community leaders who are community-nominated and selected under a project sponsored by Oracle. Learn more about Java Champions



          “Shaping Justice,” With Bronx Defenders Founder Robin Steinberg   
Streaming Audio

Robin Steinberg, founder of the Bronx Defenders, talks about her work as a public defender for indigent clients and describes ways that law students can get involved in “shaping” the justice they want to see in the world.

          "Science in the Service of the People"    
Newswise image"Are you unhappy with your environment?" asked the flyer for a Town Hall meeting at the Faith Temple Holy Church in Chester, PA, held earlier this month. Residents gathered for a Q&A with environmental scientists, Rev. Horace Stand, church pastor and founder of the Chester Environmental Partnership (CEP), and long-time Chester residents and CEP members Dolores and John Shelton.
          Katie Redford '95 Discusses Current Trends in Human Rights and Environmental Justice Lawyering   
Streaming Audio Audio icon 16_10_18_redford_human_rights.mp3

Katie Redford ’95, co-founder of EarthRights International, a non-governmental organization focusing on human rights and environmental justice, discusses current trends, threats and opportunities in human rights lawyering. 

           U.S. regulator files fraud charges in Bitcoin, office space investment schemes    
WASHINGTON, June 30 (Reuters) - The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday said it filed fraud charges against the founder of a purported...
          IAEE Honors Feathr with Spotlight for Achievement in Innovation   

Co-founder and CEO shares Feathr's beginnings, inspired by IAEE's recognition.

(PRWeb June 30, 2017)

Read the full story at

          Neighborhood Spotlight: Woodland Hills is a power-shopper's mecca with outdoor delights   

The development of the San Fernando Valley features more than its share of shady real estate speculators, above-the-law syndicates of the rich and powerful, and outright con men. But few of those rogues possessed the duplicity of the founder of the small hillside settlement that would eventually...

          French Pastry School of City Colleges of Chicago Educator Named 'Knight' by the French Government   

French Pastry School Educator, Chef Jacquy Pfeiffer joins the ranks of Sean Connery, Bill Gates and Julia ChildCHICAGO, June 30, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Chef Jacquy Pfeiffer, co-founder of The French Pastry School of Kennedy-King College at City Colleges of Chicago joins the ranks of Sean Connery, Bill Gates and Julia Child, as they have the honor of being named a Knight!  Being Knighted by the F...

          StoryForward NYC: Storytelling for Social Good   
Video of Foossa co-founder David Colby Reed and myself at the StoryForward NYC Storytelling for Social Good panel in November with Ram Devineni, Andrea Phillips, and Dan Bigman.
          VIDEO: Design Challenges at the Rwandan Genocide Memorial   
How do we design transformative museum experiences that bridge the gap between empathy and action? I explore this question in my Rising Minds talk at Soho House NY and share about Foossa’s design collaboration with UX for Good and the Kigali Genocide Memorial. Rising Minds presents Lee-Sean Huang, Co-founder and Creative Director of Foossa from risingminds on … Continue reading VIDEO: Design Challenges at the Rwandan Genocide Memorial
          Hagley 25 Years Jazz Jam - Celebrating 25 Fabulous Years   

Hagley Jazz began in February 1992 in the inimitable Chilton House. The course grew from the vision of founder Wytze Hoekstra, and with the support of Hagley College, it unfolded to become a well-respected catalyst ...

Christchurch | Saturday, 1 July 2017

          ULM remembers 'diehard' fan Johnny Huntsman   
Huntsman, the founder of Johnny's Pizza, died on Wednesday.

          NBA's David Robinson: From professional sports to venture capitalism   
Former NBA player David Robinson, co-founder of Admiral Capital, discusses his transition into the real estate business and his work in private equity and investment.
          Natural Cycles Fertility App   

Whether you're trying to conceive quickly or prevent pregnancy without the use of contraception, knowing your cycle in depth is key. A calendar can be handy for tracking dates but with technology being in the palm of our hands, quite literally, it's definitely worth downloading the Natural Cycles fertility app for the latest information on the go. 

The app was created by Dr Raoul Scherwitzl and Dr Elina Berglun, a Swedish husband and wife team, and it has already helped over 5,000 women to conceive. That's quite remarkable, especially as many became pregnant within just 3 months of trying. Recent studies also show that Natural Cycles can be as effective as using the pill so if on the other hand you would like a break from contraception without pregnancy as a result, it's a reliable alternative.

How does it work?

Each morning a woman is required to take just a few seconds to record her temperature (under her tongue) and input the details into the app. You will receive a free thermometer if you subscribe to the app for a full year so you don't even need to worry about purchasing one. This, along with tracking her period, enables the apps unique algorithm to help an individual to identify when they are ovulating and their fertile window so they know exactly when they should, or shouldn't, have sex.

The more you track the more accurate your ovulation prediction becomes.

Dr Elina Berglund says “The success of Natural Cycles depends on its algorithm. We’ve called the algorithm Alba (after our daughter) and it’s unique because it has collected data from hundreds of thousands of cycles. This means we can adapt to each individual woman’s body and, with a high degree of precision and accuracy, determine when she is ovulating.”

The app is easy to download via the iTunes or Google stores and very simple to navigate. I've been using it for a few weeks and it has quickly become part of my daily routine. I just pop in the relevant data and if I'm fertile on a specific day then the cycle date will be circled in red, green if not, making it clear whether sex should be on the agenda for me.

Upon registering you enter some basic details which include your height, weight, date of birth, last known cycle information and whether you intend to track your fertility or plan a pregnancy. Then you're ready to begin. You can of course change these details if you later decide that you are ready to try for a baby or vice versa. You can even get a free month trial to see how it works for you before committing which I really appreciated - it's good to try before you buy.

I have been on the pill for many years to prevent pregnancy but I decided to have a break from it to test the app. I felt as though tracking the signs my body provides with Natural Cycles would be sufficient to prevent a bundle of joy, for the time being, and it has been successful in doing so. This is now a method that I intend to use for the foreseeable future as I feel it can be trusted well and it has also given me a much better understanding of my body, something I've not experienced before.

Natural Cycles is offering women in the UK a refund if they don’t conceive in the first 9 months of use as well as 50% off a yearly subscription by visiting and inputting this code (valid until 31 December): MiniMesNC

What contraception do you use? Did you conceive easily?
Would you use the app?

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          Burial Application Granted for Matua Bruce Stewart QSM   
Rangatira Bruce Stewart QSM (of Te Arawa and Tainui descent) founder of Tapu Te Ranga Marae Island Bay passed away peacefully on Wednesday morning aged 80, surrounded by his whānau. The whānau are both sad that he is no longer with us and relieved ...
          Server / Dietary Aide   
Presbyterian Homes & Services - Minneapolis, MN - and Founder's Ridge communities are seeking part time Servers / Dietary Aides / Dining Aides / Culinary Assistants to join our team. Many schedules... for older adults- not only with their dietary needs, but also emotionally, socially, mentally, and spiritually. The Server / Dietary Aide...
          Navy SEAL Foundation Announces Kenneth C. Griffin as 2017 Patriot...   

The Navy SEAL Foundation announced today that Kenneth C. Griffin, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Citadel, will receive the 2017 Navy SEAL Patriot Award at the Chicago Evening of Tribute on the...

(PRWeb June 29, 2017)

Read the full story at

          RAVN looking to develop new AI capabilities   
Artificial intelligence (AI) company RAVN is working on developing new technologies within the AI space, according to co-founder Peter Wallqvist.

The company’s new tool could aid in prediction of costs, risks, and outcomes for legal cases. Wallqvist said RAVN is working on developing the new capabilities with a few firms and companies.

RAVN was acquired earlier this year by iManage, a US document management company.

          Dubliners, see 'The Phantom Of The Opera' with a new original score in the park this Saturday.   

Both film and music lovers alike will delight at what Happenings have planned for this Saturday 1st July, in the heart of the city, Merrion Square. We will be landing in the city park and combining great weather and instant communication to gather hundreds of people to witness the 1925 silent horror 'The Phantom of the Opera'.

Not only will we be screening The Phantom of the Opera - but we will be welcoming ' The Happenings Quartet' made up of musicians Matthew Nolan, David Stalling, Sean Mac Elaine and Sharon Phelan who will perform an original score that will accompany Rupert Julian’s 1925 classic. 

Happenings & DCC want Dublin film lovers to grab their mates, loved ones and some picnic blankets for this blissful summer evening as the city centre park will be transformed into a pop-up outdoor cinema, musical amphitheatre with entertainment, music and food.

A true Hollywood classic - the silent black and white film, The Phantom of the Opera stars Lon Chaney, Hollywood’s “Man of 1,000 Faces” as Erik, the horribly disfigured phantom who leads a menacing existence in the catacombs and dungeons beneath the Paris Opera House. When Erik falls in love with a beautiful prima donna, the master musician kidnaps her and holds her hostage in his lair.

 “At Happenings we have some simple philosophies. We strive to give green public spaces beautiful open air events allowing people to enjoy their city in a meaningful way.” says Peter O’Brien, Happenings founder. “A personal responsibility action at our events is to Leave No Trace. Our audiences clean up the space by taking care of their own waste. We have an unlocked policy. This means we are unlocking the potential of public space and we do not have drunken madness at anytime. We aim to provide an alternative to pub based entertainment”

Tickets are available on or on the gate for €10. 

Gates open at 8.30pm. The film will begin at dusk.

          Tommys Honour   
In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy's Honour - an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.
          Food expert Jonathan Doughty moves to ECE   

Hamburg, 29 June 2017 – Internationally renowned foodservice expert Jonathan Doughty moves from JLL Foodservice Consulting to ECE. He has been appointed Global Head of Foodservice and will lead a Team of specialists at ECE effective July 1st. Klaus Striebich, Managing Director Leasing: “We are delighted to add such an expert, who is renowned across Europe and a unique figure in his industry, to our team.” Klaus Rethmeier, Director Key Account-Management: “Foodservices will play an ever-greater role in our operations. Creating a new executive position and bringing in Jonathan Doughty demonstrates the importance that foodservices have and should have in shopping centers. We are very pleased that the potential of our numerous exciting ECE projects have convinced Jonathan to join us.”  

Jonathan Doughty became known in 1993 as founder and Global Managing Director of Coverpoint Foodservice Consultants based in the UK. In November 2014, the company was acquired by Jones Lang LaSalle. Until recently, Jonathan Doughty has managed the business line as Head of EMEA Foodservice Consulting.

Food concepts have been evolving rapidly in the past few years.  Being a well-connected expert with knowledge of the ever-increasing requirements of the business, Jonathan Doughty will advise ECE, develop new concepts, and communicate with new and existing food and beverage tenants. 

In addition, one of Jonathan Doughty's outstanding abilities is to design new dining areas and food courts for new and existing shopping centers. He and his team will analyze the potential of ECE's around 150 portfolio centers for new and refurbishment food projects and implement them.

ECE has already been working with Jonathan Doughty since 2014. Together with ECE's leasing experts, he developed the spectacular “Foodtopia” dining area at Frankfurt's MyZeil shopping center, which is currently under re-construction and is due for an opening in 2018.

Jonathan and his young family will be relocating to the heart of Europe as part of his new role.


          Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 6/29/17   

Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 6/29/17
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Among foods that inspire a cult-like following, pork often leads the pack, as evidenced by the 65% of Americans eager to name bacon the country’s national food.

Unfortunately, that popularity comes at a cost. Along with being the most commonly consumed meat in the world, pork may also be one of the most dangerous, carrying some important and under-discussed risks that any consumer should be aware of (1).

1. Hepatitis E

Thanks to the revival of nose-to-tail eating, offal has redeemed itself among health enthusiasts, especially liver, which is prized for its vitamin A content and massive mineral lineup.

But when it comes to pork, liver might be risky business.

In developed nations, pork liver is the top food-based transmitter of hepatitis E, a virus that infects 20 million people each year and can lead to acute illness (fever, fatigue, jaundice, vomiting, joint pain and stomach pain), enlarged liver and sometimes liver failure and death (23).

Most hepatitis E cases are stealthily symptom-free, but pregnant women can experience violent reactions to the virus, including fulminant hepatitis (rapid-onset liver failure) and a high risk of both maternal and fetal mortality (4). In fact, mothers who get infected during their third trimester face a death rate of up to 25% (5).

In rare cases, hepatitis E infection can lead to myocarditis (an inflammatory heart disease), acute pancreatitis (painful inflammation of the pancreas), neurological problems (including Guillain-Barré syndrome and neuralgic amyotrophy), blood disorders and musculoskeletal problems, such as elevated creatine phosphokinase, indicating muscle damage, and multi-joint pain (in the form of polyarthralgia) (678).

People with compromised immune systems, including organ transplant recipients on immunosuppressive therapy and people with HIV, are more likely to suffer from these severe hepatitis E complications (9).

So, just how alarming are pork’s contamination stats? In America, about 1 out of every 10 store-bought pig livers tests positive for hepatitis E, which is slightly higher than the 1 in 15 rate in the Netherlands and 1 in 20 rate in the Czech Republic (1011). One study in Germany found that about 1 in 5 pork sausages were contaminated (12).

France’s traditional figatellu, a pig liver sausage that’s often consumed raw, is a confirmed hepatitis E carrier (13). In fact, in regions of France where raw or rare pork is a common delicacy, over half the local population shows evidence of hepatitis E infection (14).

Japan, too, is facing rising hepatitis E concerns as pork gains popularity (15). And in the UK? Hepatitis E shows up in pork sausages, in pork liver and at pork slaughterhouses, indicating the potential for widespread exposure among pork consumers (16).

It might be tempting to blame the hepatitis E epidemic on commercial farming practices, but in the case of the pig, wilder doesn’t mean safer. Hunted boars, too, are frequent hepatitis E carriers, capable of passing on the virus to game-eating humans (1718).

Apart from total pork abstinence, the best way to slash hepatitis E risk is in the kitchen. This stubborn virus can survive the temperatures of rare-cooked meat, making high heat the best weapon against infection (19). For virus deactivation, cooking pork products for at least 20 minutes to an internal temperature of 71°C (160°F) seems to do the trick (20).

However, fat can protect hepatitis viruses from heat destruction, so fattier cuts of pork might need extra time or toastier temperatures (21).

Summary: Pork products, particularly liver, frequently carry hepatitis E, which can cause severe complications and even death in vulnerable populations. Thorough cooking is necessary to deactivate the virus.

2. Multiple Sclerosis

One of the most surprising risks associated with pork — one that’s received remarkably little airtime — is multiple sclerosis (MS), a devastating autoimmune condition involving the central nervous system.

The robust link between pork and MS has been known at least since the 1980s, when researchers analyzed the relationship between per capita pork consumption and MS across dozens of countries (22).

While pork-averse nations like Israel and India were nearly spared from MS’s degenerative grips, more liberal consumers, such as West Germany and Denmark, faced sky-high rates.

In fact, when all countries were considered, pork intake and MS showed a whopping correlation of 0.87 (p<0.001), which is much higher and more significant than the relationship between MS and fat intake (0.63, p<0.01), MS and total meat intake (0.61, p<0.01) and MS and beef consumption (no significant relationship).

For perspective, a similar study of diabetes and per capita sugar intake found a correlation of just under 0.60 (p<0.001) when analyzing 165 countries (23).

As with all epidemiological findings, the correlation between pork consumption and MS can’t prove that one causes the other (or even that, within MS-stricken countries, the most enthusiastic pork consumers were the most diseased). But as it turns out, the evidence vault goes much deeper.

Earlier, a study of inhabitants of the Orkney and Shetland Islands of Scotland, a region teeming with unusual delicacies, including seabird eggs, raw milk and undercooked meat, found only one dietary association with MS — consumption of “potted head,” a dish made from boiled pig’s brain (24).

Among Shetland residents, a significantly higher proportion of MS patients had consumed potted head in their youth, compared to healthy, age and sex-matched controls (25).

This is particularly relevant because — per other research — MS that strikes in adulthood might stem from environmental exposures during adolescence (26).

The potential for pig brain to trigger nerve-related autoimmunity isn’t just an observational hunch, either. Between 2007 and 2009, a cluster of 24 pork plant workers mysteriously fell ill with progressive inflammatory neuropathy, which is characterized by MS-like symptoms such as fatigue, numbness, tingling and pain (2728).

The source of the outbreak? So-called “pig brain mist” — tiny particles of brain tissue blasted into the air during carcass processing (29).

When workers inhaled these tissue particles, their immune systems, per standard protocol, formed antibodies against the foreign porcine antigens.

But those antigens happened to bear an uncanny resemblance to certain neural proteins in humans. And the result was a biological calamity: confused about who to fight, the workers’ immune systems launched a guns-blazing attack on their own nerve tissue (3031).

Although the resulting autoimmunity wasn’t identical to multiple sclerosis, that same process of molecular mimicry, where foreign antigens and self-antigens are similar enough to trigger an autoimmune response, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of MS (3233).

Of course, unlike pig brain mist, hot dogs and ham aren’t literally inhaled (teenage boys notwithstanding). Could pork still transmit problematic substances through ingestion?

The answer is a speculative yes. For one, certain bacteria, particularly Acinetobacter, are involved in molecular mimicry with myelin, the nerve-sheathing substance that becomes damaged in MS (3435).

Although the role of pigs as Acinetobacter carriers hasn’t been exhaustively studied, the bacteria has been found in pig feces, on pig farms and in bacon, pork salami and ham, where it serves as a spoilage organism (36373839). If pork acts as a vehicle for Acinetobacter transmission (or in any way increases the risk of human infection), a link with MS would make sense.

Two, pigs may be silent and under-studied carriers of prions, misfolded proteins that drive neurodegenerative disorders like Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (the human version of mad cow) and Kuru (found among cannibal societies) (40).

Some researchers suggest MS itself could be a prion disease, one that targets oligodendrocytes, the cells that produce myelin (41). And since prions — and their associated diseases— are transmitted by consuming infected nerve tissue, it’s possible that prion-harboring pork products could be one link in the MS chain (42).

Summary: A causative role of pork in MS is far from a closed case, but the unusually strong epidemiological patterns, biological plausibility and documented experiences make further research imperative.

3. Liver Cancer and Cirrhosis

Liver problems tend to trail closely on the heels of some predictable risk factors, namely hepatitis B and C infection, exposure to aflatoxin (a carcinogen produced by mold) and excessive alcohol intake (434445).

But buried in the scientific literature is another potential scourge of liver health — pork.

For decades, pork consumption has faithfully echoed liver cancer and cirrhosis rates around the world. In multi-country analyses, the correlation between pork and cirrhosis mortality clocked in at 0.40 (p<0.05) using 1965 data, 0.89 (p<0.01) using mid-1970s data, 0.68 (p=0.003) using 1996 data and 0.83 (p=0.000) using 2003 data (4647).

In those same analyses, among the 10 Canadian provinces, pork bore a correlation of 0.60 (p<0.01) with death from liver cirrhosis, while alcohol, perhaps due to an overall low intake, showed no significant link.

And in statistical models incorporating known perils for the liver (alcohol consumption, hepatitis B infection and hepatitis C infection), pork remained independently associated with liver disease, suggesting the association isn’t just due to pork piggybacking, as the case may be, on a different causative agent (48).

Beef, by contrast, remained liver-neutral or protective in these studies.

Liver cancer, too, tends to follow in the hoof steps of the pig. A 1985 analysis showed that pork intake correlated with hepatocellular carcinoma deaths as strongly as alcohol did (0.40, p<0.05 for both) (49). (Considering liver cirrhosis is often a prelude to cancer, this connection shouldn’t be surprising (50).)

So, what’s behind these eerie associations?

At first glance, the most likely explanations don’t pan out. Although pork-transmitted hepatitis E can lead to liver cirrhosis, this happens almost exclusively in immunosuppressed people, a subset of the population that’s too small to account for the global correlation (51).

Relative to other meat, pork tends to be high in omega-6 fatty acids, including linoleic acid and arachidonic acid, which may play a role in liver disease (525354). But vegetable oils, whose polyunsaturated fatty acid content blows pork out of the water, don’t dance the same liver disease tango that pork does, calling into question whether fat is really to blame (5556).

Heterocyclic amines, a class of carcinogens formed by cooking meat (including pork) at high temperatures, contribute to liver cancer in a variety of animals (57). But these compounds are also readily formed in beef, according to the same studies that indicated pork has no positive relationship with liver disease (5859).

With all that in mind, it’d be easy to dismiss the pork-liver disease link as an epidemiological fluke. However, some plausible mechanisms do exist.

The most likely contender involves nitrosamines, which are carcinogenic compounds created when nitrites and nitrates react with certain amines (from protein), particularly in high heat (60). These compounds have been linked to damage and cancer in a variety of organs, including the liver (61).

One of the biggest dietary sources of nitrosamines is processed pork, which, along with being a frequent visitor to the frying pan, typically contains nitrites and nitrates as curing agents. (Vegetables are also rich in naturally occurring nitrates, but their antioxidant content and dearth of protein help thwart the process of N-nitrosation, preventing them from becoming cancer-causing agents (62).)

Significant levels of nitrosamines have been found in pork liver pâté, bacon, sausage, ham and other cured meats (636465). The fatty portion of pork products, in particular, tends to accumulate much higher levels of nitrosamines than the lean bits, making bacon a particularly abundant source (66).

The presence of fat can also turn vitamin C into a nitrosamine promoter instead of a nitrosamine inhibitor, so pairing pork with veggies might not confer much protection (67).

Although much of the nitrosamine-liver cancer research has focused on rodents, where certain nitrosamines produce liver injury with remarkable ease, the effect appears in humans as well (6869). In fact, some researchers suggest humans may be even more sensitive to nitrosamines than mice and rats (70).

In Thailand, for instance, nitrosamines have been strongly linked to liver cancer in areas where other risk factors are low (71). A 2010 analysis of the NIH-AARP cohort found red meat (including pork), processed meat (including processed pork), nitrates and nitrites to be positively associated with chronic liver disease. Rubber workers, occupationally exposed to nitrosamines, have faced extremely high rates of non-alcohol-related liver disease and cancer (72).

Do nitrosamines prove a chain of causation between pork, liver-harming compounds and liver disease? The evidence is currently too patchy to make that claim, but the risk is plausible enough to justify limiting nitrosamine-containing (or nitrosamine-producing) pork products, including bacon, ham, hot dogs and sausages made with sodium nitrite or potassium nitrate.

Summary: Strong epidemiological links exist between pork consumption and liver disease. If these links reflect cause and effect, one culprit might be N-nitroso compounds, which are found abundantly in processed pork products cooked at high temperatures.

4. Yersinia

For years, pork’s precautionary motto was “well-done or bust,” a consequence of fears about trichinosis, a type of roundworm infection that ravaged pork consumers throughout much of the 20th century (73).

Thanks to changes in feeding practices, farm hygiene and quality control, pig-borne trichinosis has dropped off the radar, inviting pink pork back onto the menu.

But pork’s relaxed heat rules may have opened the doors for a different type of infection — yersiniosis, which is caused by Yersinia bacteria. In the US alone, Yersiniacauses 35 deaths and almost 117,000 cases of food poisoning each year (74). Its chief entry route for humans? Undercooked pork.

Yersiniosis’s acute symptoms are rough enough — fever, pain, bloody diarrhea — but its long-term consequences are what should really ring alarm bells. Victims of Yersiniapoisoning face a 47-times higher risk of reactive arthritis, a type of inflammatory joint disease triggered by infection (75).

Even children become post-Yersinia arthritis targets, sometimes requiring chemical synovectomy (the injection of osmic acid into a troubled joint) to relieve persistent pain (7677).

And in the less-common instances where Yersinia doesn’t bring the typical feverish, diarrheic unpleasantries? Reactive arthritis can develop even when the original infection was asymptomatic, leaving some victims unaware that their arthritis is a consequence of food-borne illness (78).

Although reactive arthritis usually subsides on its own over time, Yersinia victims remain at higher risk of chronic joint problems, including ankylosing spondylitis, sacroiliitis, tenosynovitis and rheumatoid arthritis, for years on end (798081).

Some evidence suggests that Yersinia can lead to neurological complications (82). Infected individuals with iron overload may be at higher risk of multiple liver abscesses, potentially leading to death (838485). And among people who are genetically susceptible, anterior uveitis, inflammation of the eye’s iris, is also more likely following a bout of Yersinia (8687).

Lastly, via molecular mimicry, Yersinia infection could also raise the risk of Graves’ disease, an autoimmune condition characterized by excessive thyroid hormone production (8889).

The solution? Bring on the heat. The majority of pork products (69% of tested samples, according to a Consumer Reports analysis) are contaminated with Yersiniabacteria, and the only way to safeguard against infection is through proper cooking. An internal temperature of at least 145°F for whole pork and 160°F for ground pork is necessary to decimate any lingering pathogen.

Summary: Undercooked pork can transmit Yersinia bacteria, causing short-term illness and raising the risk of reactive arthritis, chronic joint conditions, Graves’ disease and other complications.

In Conclusion

So, should health-savvy omnivores scrap pork from the menu?

The jury’s still out. For two of pork’s problems — hepatitis E and Yersinia — aggressive cooking and safe handling are enough to minimize the risk. And due to a shortage of controlled, pork-centric research capable of establishing causation, pork’s other red flags spring from epidemiology — a field rife with confounders and unjustified confidence.

Worse, many diet-and-disease studies lump pork together with other types of red meat, diluting whatever associations might exist with pork alone.

These issues make it hard to isolate the health effects of pig-derived products and determine the safety of their consumption.

That being said, caution is probably warranted. The sheer magnitude, consistency and mechanistic plausibility of pork’s connection with several serious diseases make the chances of a true risk more likely.

Until further research is available, you might want to think twice about going hog-wild on pork.

This article was originally published by Authority Nutrition.



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          Creating a SharePoint DataLake with SQL Server using Enzo Unified   

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In this blog post I will show how you can easily copy a SharePoint list to a SQL Server table, and keep the data updated one a specific frequency, allowing you to easily create a DataLake for your SharePoint lists. This will work with SharePoint 2013 and higher, and with SharePoint Online. While you can spend a large amount of time learning the SharePoint APIs and its many subtleties, it is far more efficient to configure simple replication jobs that will work under most scenarios.

The information provided in this post will help you get started in setting a replication of SharePoint lists to a SQL Server database, so that you can query the local SQL Server database from Excel, Reporting tools, or even directly to the database. You should also note that Enzo Unified provides direct real-time access to SharePoint Lists through native SQL commands so you can view, manage and update SharePoint List Items.



Installing Enzo Unified

To try the steps provided in this lab, you will need the latest version of Enzo Unified (1.7 or higher) provided here: The download page also contains installation instructions.

Enzo Unified Configuration

Once Enzo Unified has been installed, start Enzo Manager (located in the Enzo Manager directory where Enzo was installed). Click on File –> Connect and enter the local Enzo connection information. 

NOTE:  Enzo Unified is a Windows Service that looks like SQL Server; you must connect Enzo Manager to Enzo Unified which by default is running on port 9550. The password should be the one you specified during the installation steps. The following screen shows typical connection settings against Enzo Unified:


Create Connection Strings

Next, you will need to create “Central Connection Strings” so that Enzo will know how to connect to the source system (SharePoint) and the destination database (SQL Server). You manage connection strings from the Configuration –> Manage Connection Strings menu. In the screen below, you can see that a few connection strings have been created. The first one is actually a connection string to Enzo Unified, which we will need later.


The next step is to configure the SharePoint adapter by specifying the credentials used by Enzo Unified. Configuring the SharePoint adapter is trivial: three parameters are needed: a SharePoint login name, the password for the login, and the URL to your SharePoint site. You should make sure the login has enough rights to access SharePoint lists and access SharePoint Fields.


Once the configuration to the SharePoint site is complete, you can execute commands against Enzo Unified using SQL Server Management Studio.

Fetch records from SharePoint using SQL Server Management Studio

To try the above configuration, open SQL Server Management Studio, and connect to Enzo Unified (not SQL Server). From the same machine where Enzo is running, a typical connection screen looks like this:


Once you are connected to Enzo Unified, and assuming your SharePoint site has a list called Enzo Test, you can run simple SQL commands like this:

SELECT * FROM SharePoint.[list@Enzo Test]

Create a Virtual Table

You will also need to create a Virtual Table in Enzo so that the SharePoint list looks like a table in Enzo Unified. A Virtual Table is made of columns that match the SharePoint list you want to replicate. To do this, open Enzo Manager, select the SharePoint adapter, and create a new Virtual Table by clicking on the NEW icon; provide a name for the Virtual Table, and select the columns to create through a picker. In the example below, I am creating a Virtual Table called vEnzoTest, which mirrors a SharePoint List called ‘Enzo Test’.


The picker allows you to execute the SQL command to validate it is working. Clicking OK will automatically add all the requested columns to the Virtual Table.

Make sure to pick the ID and Modified columns; this will be required later.


Once completed, I can run commands like this against the SharePoint adapter using SQL Server Management Studio:

SELECT * FROM SharePoint.vEnzoTest

SELECT * FROM SharePoint.vEnzoTest WHERE Title ID > 100

The difference with the previous SQL command is that the virtual table will only return the columns specified by the Virtual Table.

Configure Data Sync Jobs

Once the Virtual Table has been created, you can add new Jobs to copy the SharePoint data into SQL Server, and keep updates synchronized with the SQL Server table. A simple configuration screen allows you to setup the data sync jobs. You can choose which operations to replicate, the destination table, and a schedule for data updates. In the example below I am setting up a 3 data sync jobs of the vPosts Virtual Table: initialization, insert/update, and delete, updated every 5 minutes.


You can also use Enzo Manager to monitor the data sync jobs, or run them manually.

Once the jobs have been created, you can simply connect to the SQL Server database (not Enzo Unified) and see the replicated data. For example, you can connect to SQL Server, and run the following statement assuming the above destination table (as shown in the screenshot) has been created.

SELECT * FROM DataLake.SharePoint.vPosts


This post shows you how to easily configure Enzo Unified to replicate SharePoint lists to a local SQL Server database to enable reporting and other data integration projects such as a Data Lake.

About Herve Roggero

Herve Roggero, Microsoft Azure MVP, @hroggero, is the founder of Enzo Unified ( Herve's experience includes software development, architecture, database administration and senior management with both global corporations and startup companies. Herve holds multiple certifications, including an MCDBA, MCSE, MCSD. He also holds a Master's degree in Business Administration from Indiana University. Herve is the co-author of "PRO SQL Azure" and “PRO SQL Server 2012 Practices” from Apress, a PluralSight author, and runs the Azure Florida Association.

          The United States Congress: Decorum Lost   
Lord, what would the Founders say if they read the letter from the Congressional Black Caucus to President Trump indicating their desire to “educate” him on all things relating to—what else—the Black community?  It is one thing to enfranchise a group in our representative government; but to be condescended to by them in this manner?  […]
          Writing a Voice Activated SharePoint Todo List - IoT App on RPi   

Originally posted on:

Ever wanted to write a voice activated system on an IoT device to keep track of your “todo list”, hear your commands being played back, and have the system send you a text message with your todo list when it’s time to walk out the door?  Well, I did. In this blog post, I will provide a high level overview of the technologies I used, why I used them, a few things I learned along the way, and partial code to assist with your learning curve if you decide to jump on this.  I also had the pleasure of demonstrating this prototype at Microsoft’s Community Connections in Atlanta in front of my colleagues.

How It Works

I wanted to build a system using 2 Raspberry Pis (one running Windows 10 IoT Core, and another running Raspbian) that achieved the following objectives:

  • * Have 2 RPis that communicate through the Azure Service Bus
    This was an objective of mine, not necessarily a requirement; the intent was to have two RPis running different Operating Systems communicate asynchronously without sharing the same network
  • * Learn about the Microsoft Speech Recognition SDK
    I didn’t want to send data to the cloud for speech recognition; so I needed an SDK on the RPi to perform this function; I chose the Microsoft Speech Recognition SDK for this purpose

    * Communicate to multiple cloud services without any SDK so that I could program the same way on Windows and Raspbian (Twilio, Azure Bus, Azure Table, SharePoint Online)
    I also wanted to minimize the learning curve of finding which SDK could run on a Windows 10 IoT Core, and Raspbian (Linux); so I used Enzo Unified to abstract the APIs and instead send simple HTTPS commands allowing me to have an SDK-less development environment (except for the Speech Recognition SDK). Seriously… go find an SDK for SharePoint Online for Raspbian and UWP (Windows 10 IoT Core).

The overall solution looks like this:



In order to achieve the above objectives, I used the following bill of materials:

Technology Comment Link
2x Raspberry Pi 2 Model B Note that one RPi runs on Windows 10 IoT Core, and the other runs Raspbian
Microphone I tried a few, but the best one I found for this project was the Mini AKIRO USB Microphone
Speaker I also tried a few, and while there is a problem with this speaker on RPi and Windows, the Logitech Z50 was the better one
USB Keyboard I needed a simple way to have keyboard and mouse during while traveling, so I picked up the iPazzPort Mini Keyboard; awesome…
Monitor You can use an existing monitor, but I also used the portable ATian 7 inch display. A bit small, but does the job. 
IoT Dashboard Utility that allows you to manage your RPis running Windows; make absolutely sure you run the latest build; it should automatically upgrade, but mine didn’t.
Windows 10 IoT Core The Microsoft O/S used on one of the RPis; Use the latest build; mine was 15063; if you are looking for instructions on how to install Windows from a command prompt, the link provided proved useful
Raspbian Your RPi may be delivered with an SD card preloaded with the necessary utilities to install Raspbian; connecting to a wired network makes the installation a breeze.
Visual Studio 2015 I used VS2015, C#, to build the prototype for the Windows 10 IoT Core RPi
Python 3 On the Raspbian RPi, I used Python 3 to code.
Enzo Unified I installed and configured an Enzo Unified instance (version 1.7) in the Azure cloud; for Enzo to talk to SharePoint Online, Twilio, Azure Service Bus and Azure Storage, I also needed accounts with these providers. You can try Enzo Unified for free for 30 days.


Things to Know

Creating a prototype involving the above technologies will inevitably lead you to collect a few nuggets along the way. Here are a few.

Disable Windows 10 IoT Core Updates

While disabling updates is generally speaking not recommended, IoT projects usually require a predictable environment that does not reboot in the middle of a presentation. In order to disable Windows Updates on this O/S I used information published Mike Branstein on his blog:

Try different hardware, and keep your receipts…

I had to try a few different components to find the right ones; the normally recommended S-150 USB Logitech speakers did not work for me; I lost all my USB ports and network connectivity as soon as I plugged it in. Neither did the JLab USB Laptop speakers. I also tried the 7.1 Channel USB External Sound Card but was unable to make it work (others were successful). For audio input, I also tried the VAlinks Mini Flexible USB microphone; while it worked well, it picked up too much noise compared to the AKIRO, and became almost unusable in a room with 20 people where you have background noise.

Hotel WiFi Connections

This was one of the most frustrating part of this whole experience on Windows 10 IoT Core. You should know that this operating system does not currently come equipped with a browser. This means that you cannot easily connect to a hotel network since this usually requires starting a browser so that you can enter a user id and password provided by the hotel. Further more, since there is also no possible way to “forget” a previously registered network, you can find yourself in a serious bind… I first purchased the Skyroam Mobile Hotspot, hoping it would provide the answer. Unfortunately the only time I tried it, in Tampa Florida, the device could not obtain a connection. So I ended up adding a browser object into my UWP application and force it to refresh a specific image every time I start the app; this will force the hotel login page to show up when needed. I am still looking for a good solution to this problem.

Speech Privacy Policy on Windows

Because parts of the code I am running leverages the underlying APIs of Cortana, it seems that you must accept the Cortana privacy policy; this is required only the first time you run the application, but is obviously a major nightmare for applications you may want to ship. I am not aware of any programmatic workaround at this time. This stackoverflow post provides information about this policy and how to accept it.

How It Looks Like

A picture is worth a thousand words… so here is the complete setup:


C# Code

Since this is an ongoing prototype I will not share the complete code at this time; however I will share a few key components/techniques I used to make this work.

Speech Recognition

I used both continuous dictation speech recognition, and grammar-based recognition from the Microsoft Speech Recognition API. The difference is that the first one gives you the ability to listen to “anything” being said, and the other will only give you a set of results that match the expected grammar. Both methods give you a degree of confidence so you can decide if the command/text input was sufficiently clear. The following class provides a mechanism for detecting input either through continuous dictation or using a grammar file. The timeout ensures that you do not wait forever. This code also returns the confidence level of the capture.


using Enzo.UWP;
using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;

using System.Diagnostics;
using System.Net.Http;
using System.Threading.Tasks;
using Windows.ApplicationModel;
using Windows.Devices.Gpio;
using Windows.Media.SpeechRecognition;
using Windows.Media.SpeechSynthesis;
using Windows.Storage;

namespace ClientIoT

    public class VoiceResponse
        public string Response = null;
        public double RawConfidence = 0;

    public class VoiceInput
        private const int SPEECH_TIMEOUT = 3;
        private System.Threading.Timer verifyStatus;
        private string lastInput = "";
        private double lastRawConfidence = 0;
        private bool completed = false;
        private bool success = false;

        public async Task<VoiceResponse> WaitForText(string grammarFile)
            return await WaitForText(SPEECH_TIMEOUT, grammarFile);

        public async Task<VoiceResponse> WaitForText(int timeout = SPEECH_TIMEOUT, string grammarFile = null)
            var resp = new VoiceResponse();
                success = false;
                completed = false;
                lastInput = "";
                lastRawConfidence = 0;

                SpeechRecognizer recognizerInput;
                DateTime dateNow = DateTime.UtcNow;

                recognizerInput = new SpeechRecognizer();
                recognizerInput.ContinuousRecognitionSession.ResultGenerated += ContinuousRecognitionSession_InputResultGenerated;
                recognizerInput.StateChanged += InputRecognizerStateChanged;
                recognizerInput.Timeouts.BabbleTimeout = TimeSpan.FromSeconds(timeout);
                recognizerInput.ContinuousRecognitionSession.Completed += ContinuousRecognitionSession_Completed;
                recognizerInput.ContinuousRecognitionSession.AutoStopSilenceTimeout = TimeSpan.FromSeconds(SPEECH_TIMEOUT);

                if (grammarFile != null)
                    StorageFile grammarContentFile = await Package.Current.InstalledLocation.GetFileAsync(grammarFile);
                    SpeechRecognitionGrammarFileConstraint grammarConstraint = new SpeechRecognitionGrammarFileConstraint(grammarContentFile);

                var compilationResult = await recognizerInput.CompileConstraintsAsync();

                // If successful, display the recognition result.
                if (compilationResult.Status != SpeechRecognitionResultStatus.Success)
                    Debug.WriteLine(" ** VOICEINPUT - VoiceCompilationError - Status: " + compilationResult.Status);

                recognizerInput.ContinuousRecognitionSession.AutoStopSilenceTimeout = TimeSpan.FromSeconds(timeout);
                recognizerInput.RecognitionQualityDegrading += RecognizerInput_RecognitionQualityDegrading;
                await recognizerInput.ContinuousRecognitionSession.StartAsync();

                System.Threading.SpinWait.SpinUntil(() =>
                resp = new VoiceResponse() { Response = lastInput, RawConfidence = lastRawConfidence };
                    recognizerInput = null;
                catch (Exception ex)
                    Debug.WriteLine("** WaitForText (1) - Dispose ** " + ex.Message);
            catch (Exception ex2)
                Debug.WriteLine("** WaitForText ** " + ex2.Message);
            return resp;

        private void RecognizerInput_RecognitionQualityDegrading(SpeechRecognizer sender, SpeechRecognitionQualityDegradingEventArgs args)
                Debug.WriteLine("VOICE INPUT - QUALITY ISSUE: " + args.Problem.ToString());
            catch (Exception ex)
                Debug.WriteLine("** VOICE INPUT - RecognizerInput_RecognitionQualityDegrading ** " + ex.Message);

        private void ContinuousRecognitionSession_Completed(SpeechContinuousRecognitionSession sender, SpeechContinuousRecognitionCompletedEventArgs args)
            if (args.Status == SpeechRecognitionResultStatus.Success
                || args.Status == SpeechRecognitionResultStatus.TimeoutExceeded)
                success = true;
            completed = true;

        private void ContinuousRecognitionSession_InputResultGenerated(SpeechContinuousRecognitionSession sender, SpeechContinuousRecognitionResultGeneratedEventArgs args)
                lastInput = "";
                if ((args.Result.Text ?? "").Length > 0)
                    lastInput = args.Result.Text;
                    lastRawConfidence = args.Result.RawConfidence;
                    Debug.WriteLine(" " + lastInput);
            catch (Exception ex)
                Debug.WriteLine("** ContinuousRecognitionSession_InputResultGenerated ** " + ex.Message);

        private void InputRecognizerStateChanged(SpeechRecognizer sender, SpeechRecognizerStateChangedEventArgs args)
            Debug.WriteLine("  Input Speech recognizer state: " + args.State.ToString());

For example, if you want to wait for a “yes/no” confirmation, with a 3 second timeout, you would call the above code as such:

var yesNoResponse = await (new VoiceInput()).WaitForText(3, YESNO_FILE);

And the yes/no grammar file looks like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>

  <rule id="root">
      <ruleref uri="#enzoCommands"/>

  <rule id="enzoCommands">
      <item> yes </item>
      <item> yep </item>
      <item> yeah </item>
      <item> no </item>
      <item> nope </item>
      <item> nah </item>


Calling Enzo Unified using HTTPS to Add a SharePoint Item

Another important part of the code is its ability to interact with other services through Enzo Unified, so that no SDK is needed on the UWP application. For an overview on how to access SharePoint Online through Enzo Unified, see this previous blog post.

The following code shows how to easily add an item to a SharePoint list through Enzo Unified. Posting this request to Enzo requires two parameters (added as headers) called “name” and “data” (data is an XML string containing the column names and values to be added as a list item).

public static async Task SharePointAddItem(string listName, string item)
            string enzoCommand = "/bsc/sharepoint/addlistitemraw";
            List<KeyValuePair<string, string>> headers = new List<KeyValuePair<string, string>>();

            string data = string.Format("<root><Title>{0}</Title></root>", item);

            headers.Add(new KeyValuePair<string, string>("name", listName));
            headers.Add(new KeyValuePair<string, string>("data", data));

            await SendRequestAsync(HttpMethod.Post, enzoCommand, headers);

And the SendRequestAsync method below shows you how to call Enzo Unified. Note that I added two cache control filters to avoid HTTP caching, and additional flags for calling Enzo Unified on an HTTPS port where a self-signed certificate is installed.

private static async Task<string> SendRequestAsync(HttpMethod method, string enzoCommand, List<KeyValuePair<string, string>> headers)
            string output = "";
            var request = EnzoUnifiedRESTLogin.BuildHttpWebRequest(method, enzoCommand, headers);
            var filter = new Windows.Web.Http.Filters.HttpBaseProtocolFilter();
            filter.CacheControl.ReadBehavior = Windows.Web.Http.Filters.HttpCacheReadBehavior.MostRecent;
            filter.CacheControl.WriteBehavior = Windows.Web.Http.Filters.HttpCacheWriteBehavior.NoCache;

            Windows.Web.Http.HttpClient httpClient = new Windows.Web.Http.HttpClient(filter);

                using (var response = await httpClient.SendRequestAsync(request))
                    output = await response.Content.ReadAsStringAsync();
            catch (Exception ex)
                System.Diagnostics.Debug.WriteLine(" ** Send Http request error: " + ex.Message);
            return output;

Last but not least, the BuildHttpWebRequest method looks like this; it ensures that the proper authentication headers are added, along with the authentication identifier for Enzo:

public static Windows.Web.Http.HttpRequestMessage BuildHttpWebRequest(Windows.Web.Http.HttpMethod httpmethod, string uri, List<KeyValuePair<string,string>> headers)
            bool hasClientAuth = false;

            Windows.Web.Http.HttpRequestMessage request = new Windows.Web.Http.HttpRequestMessage();

            request.Method = httpmethod;
            request.RequestUri = new Uri(ENZO_URI + uri);

            if (headers != null && headers.Count() > 0)
                foreach (KeyValuePair<string, string> hdr in headers)
                    request.Headers[hdr.Key] = hdr.Value;

            if (!hasClientAuth)
                request.Headers["authToken"] = ENZO_AUTH_GUID;

            return request;

Text to Speech

There is also the Text to Speech aspect, where the system speaks back what it heard, before confirming and acting on the command. Playing back is actually a bit strange in the sense that it requires a UI thread. In addition, it seems that Windows 10 IoT Core and Raspberry Pi don’t play nice together; it seems that every time a playback occurs, a loud tick can be heard before and after. A solution appears to be using USB speakers, but none worked for me. The code below simply plays back a specific text and waits a little while in an attempt to give enough time for the playback to finish (the code is non-blocking, so the SpinWait attempts to block the code until completion of the playback).

private async Task Say(string text)
            SpeechSynthesisStream ssstream = null;

                SpeechSynthesizer ss = new SpeechSynthesizer();
                ssstream = await ss.SynthesizeTextToStreamAsync(text);
            catch (Exception exSay)
                Debug.WriteLine(" ** SPEECH ERROR (1) ** - " + exSay.Message);

            var task1 = this.Dispatcher.RunAsync(Windows.UI.Core.CoreDispatcherPriority.Normal, async () =>
                    await media.PlayStreamAsync(ssstream);
                catch (Exception exSay)
                    Debug.WriteLine(" ** SPEECH ERROR (2) ** - " + exSay.Message);

            // Wait a little for the speech to complete
            System.Threading.SpinWait.SpinUntil(() => 1 == 0, lastInput.Length * 150);


Calling the above code is trivial:

await Say("I am listening");



The code in python was trivial to build; this RPi was responsible for monitoring events in the Azure Service Bus and turning on/off the LED attached to it. The following pseudo code shows how to call Enzo Unified from Python without using any SDK:

import sys
import urllib
import urllib2
import requests


while 1=1
      if (len(resp[‘data’][‘Table1’]) > 0
         #extract response here…



This prototype demonstrated that while there were a few technical challenges along the way, it was relatively simple to build a speech recognition engine that can understand commands using Windows 10 IoT Core, .NET, and the Microsoft Speech Recognition SDK. 

Further more, the intent of this project was also to demonstrate that Enzo Unified made it possible to code against multiple services without the need for an SDK on the client side regardless of the platform and the development language.  Abstracting SDKs through simple HTTP calls makes it possible to access Twilio, SharePoint Online, Azure services and much more without any additional libraries on the client system.

About Herve Roggero

Herve Roggero, Microsoft Azure MVP, @hroggero, is the founder of Enzo Unified ( Herve's experience includes software development, architecture, database administration and senior management with both global corporations and startup companies. Herve holds multiple certifications, including an MCDBA, MCSE, MCSD. He also holds a Master's degree in Business Administration from Indiana University. Herve is the co-author of "PRO SQL Azure" and “PRO SQL Server 2012 Practices” from Apress, a PluralSight author, and runs the Azure Florida Association.

          Critical Lilac Sky trust finance warning kept under wraps for months   
A critical financial notice issued by the government to an academy trust revealing “significant irregular financial and governance practice” was kept under wraps for more than ten months. The Education Funding Agency (EFA) has today published a financial notice to improve (FNtI) that was issued to the controversial Lilac Sky Schools Academy Trust in August last year. It revealed the trust, which was already in the process of transferring its nine schools to new sponsors, had “significant irregular financial and governance practice over a number of years” – with government officials said to have “significant concern”. It’s not known why there was such a long delay in the EFA publishing the FNtI on its website. The trust is now in the process of liquidation, and is being run by new trustees installed by the government. There was significant irregular financial and governance practice over a number of years Analysis by Schools Week of the four other notices to improve published this year show the maximum time between the letter being issued and published online was just over two months. One FNtI was even published within three days of being issued. As Schools Week previously revealed, LSSAT’s founder Trevor Averre-Beeson went on to...
          Chuck Renslow, Michael Flynn, Annie Lennox, Ellen Page, Indonesia, Trump Subpoena: HOT LINKS   

RIP. Chuck Renslow, founder of International Mr. Leather and Chicago gay bars, dies at 87: “Renslow reigned over a seven-decade empire, starting more than two dozen businesses—bars, discos, photo studios, health clubs, bathhouses, gay magazines…

The post Chuck Renslow, Michael Flynn, Annie Lennox, Ellen Page, Indonesia, Trump Subpoena: HOT LINKS appeared first on Towleroad.

          Implementation of hybrid renewable-diesel microgrids set to increase    
Mining houses’ use of microgrids and renewable energy to generate power and supplement diesel energy at isolated mining operations has been steadily increasing, says renewable-energy and microgrid consultant THEnergy. THEnergy founder and MD Dr Thomas Hillig notes that the company has been “observing the market closely for the past three years and, in this last year, more and more mining companies have become interested in using renewables”.
          Zuckerberg Criticized For Church Comparisons At Summit   

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg recently hosted the first Facebook Community Summit and unveiled the company’s new mission statement, but his speech seems to be meeting with some backlash due to apparent comparisons between Facebook’s new mission and the function of churches. Some sources are implying that Zuckerberg’s comments could even be construed as Facebook aiming […]

The post Zuckerberg Criticized For Church Comparisons At Summit appeared first on |.

          Apple's iPhone turns 10, bumpy start forgotten   

Apple's iPhone turns 10 this week, evoking memories of a rocky start for the device that ended up doing most to start the smartphone revolution and stirring interest in where it will go from here.

Apple has sold more than 1 billion iPhones since June 29, 2007, but the first iPhone, which launched without an App Store and was restricted to the AT&T network, was limited compared to today's version.

After sluggish initial sales, Apple slashed the price to spur holiday sales that year.

"The business model for year one of the iPhone was a disaster," Tony Fadell, one of the Apple developers of the device, told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday. "We pivoted and figured it out in year two."

The very concept of the iPhone came as a surprise to some of Apple's suppliers a decade ago, even though Apple, led by CEO Steve Jobs, had already expanded beyond computers with the iPod.

"We still have the voicemail from Steve Jobs when he called the CEO and founder here," said David Bairstow at Skyhook, the company that supplied location technology to early iPhones.

"He thought he was being pranked by someone in the office and it took him two days to call Steve Jobs back."

The iPhone hit its stride in 2008 when Apple introduced the App Store, which allowed developers to make and distribute their mobile applications with Apple taking a cut of any revenue.

Ten years later, services revenue is a crucial area of growth for Apple, bringing in $24.3 billion (S$33.5 billion) in revenue last year.

New model

Fans and investors are now looking forward to the 10th anniversary iPhone 8, expected this fall, asking whether it will deliver enough new features to spark a new generation to turn to Apple.

That new phone may have 3-D mapping sensors, support for "augmented reality" apps that would merge virtual and real worlds, and a new display with organic LEDs, which are light and flexible, according to analysts at Bernstein Research.

A decade after launching into a market largely occupied by BlackBerry and Microsoft devices, the iPhone now competes chiefly with phones running Google's Android software, which is distributed to Samsung Electronics and other manufacturers around the world.

Even though most of the world's smartphones now run on Android, Apple still garners most of the profit in the industry with its generally higher-priced devices.

More than 2 billion people now have smartphones, according to data from eMarketer, and Fadell, who has worked for both Apple and Alphabet, sees that as the hallmark of success.

"Being able to democratize computing and communication across the entire world is absolutely astounding to me," Fadell said.

"It warms my heart because that's something Steve tried to do with the Apple II and the Mac, which was the computer for the rest of us. It's finally here, 30 years later."

on SPH Brightcove

Friday, June 30, 2017 - 09:54

          How U.S. and S. Korea differ on approaches to N. Korea   
President Trump welcomed South Korean President Moon Jae-in to the White House Thursday night. They're meeting to work on a joint policy to deal with the nuclear threat from North Korea. Eurasia Group founder and president Ian Bremmer joins "CBS This Morning" to provide context for the meeting and discuss the leaders' differing approaches. Bremmer also addresses President Trump's upcoming meeting with Russia's President Putin at the G20 summit in Germany.
          AEE Bonus! 3 Days Left to Enroll in the italki Language Challenge   

Are you ready for an italki challenge to push your language-learning forward in 2015?

Today, learn how to take action and bet on yourself with an amazing opportunity!


Every challenge you face is like putting a bet on yourself.  But the only way to really lose is if you don’t even try.

This month, the Language Challenge can help you improve your English in a serious way.  A $10 sign up fee gets you into the game.  If you can complete 20 lessons (20 hours) with an online teacher by the end of February, italki will pay you $40 back in credit.

This comes out to 3-4 lessons per week.  Can you handle that?  Essentially, you are placing a bet on your commitment to learning English!


Three reasons to participate in a language challenge:

Motivation: All of us need to be pushed sometimes, and there’s never better time than NOW!

Defining your goal: Learning English is a lifetime project, but having defined goals will bring clarity to your progress.

Social experience: Even though you could do this by yourself, being accountable to others will focus you and help you follow through to the end.


Ready for the challenge?  Sign up at


Are you signing up for the challenge?

Share your goals in the comments section below!


Kevin Chen is an entrepreneur based in Shanghai, China.  He is co-founder of, a language learning community marketplace that connects students and teachers from around the world for online language lessons.  italki has over a million users, thousands of teachers, and thousands of language classes are scheduled through the site every day.

Kevin is also an organizer of, a non-profit group that organizes startup and technology events in Shanghai, including Barcamp Shanghai and Designing Shanghai.

Kevin previously co-founded Famento, a startup focused on recording family history.  Before that, Kevin worked in the finance industry as a research analyst for Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch.

He has a masters degree from the London School of Economics, and a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University.

          AEE 210: English LingQ Founder Steve Kaufmann Talks About Why Learning is up to YOU   

Is learning English up to you?

Today, we talk with Steve Kaufmann, founder of English LingQ about how your English learning goals are closer than you think!


Come back to our site to learn more


Taking IELTS?

Get our free IELTS video training now


          AEE 150: Let Go of Your Grammar Obsession and Speak English like a Native   

Taking IELTS?

Get our free IELTS video training now


Today you’ll learn how to let go of your grammar mistakes and your obsession with perfection and you’ll learn how to finally speak like a native!

Today we have Idahosa Ness who is the founder of the Mimic Method and he helps learners reach fluency through song lyrics and mimicking the language.


What does it mean to “mimic” English speakers?

To “mimic” means to copy.

When you learn English, don’t learn from the written word. Learn from what you hear.

Try to surround yourself with the language and repeat back what you hear.

Don’t think about conjugating verbs in your head or making a mistake.

When you focus too much on conjugating, it restricts your ability to take in new sounds in your head.

There will be no space in your mind.

Come back to our site for a summary


          AEE 138: Ana Luiza from Ingles Online Gives You 3 Tips to Learn English Without Traveling Abroad   

Do you ever feel frustrated because you can’t travel to an English-speaking country to learn English?

Today we have Ana Luiza from Ingles Online.

She is going to offer you three tips to make it work from home.


3 Ways to Learn English from Home:

  • Don’t only read, start with audio: Don’t invest too much time in just reading if you don’t know the sounds of English. It’s common for people to start with just reading but they don’t use the audio to go with what they are reading. These students end up having strange pronunciation because they use the sounds of their native language. If you do this, it will be a huge waste of time.
  • Listen to things that you understand: Start with English audio that you understand but can’t use quite yet. Don’t focus your time on English that you don’t understand. Once you understand something once, you need to see it again and again and review it. You need to see it used in different contexts and see it being used by different people. It takes time to acquire the language. It’s a process.  Don’t jump ahead and skip over words that you think you already know.
  • Start small: If you are busy and don’t have a lot of time consume English in small chunks. Fifteen minutes a day is great.  Take small steps. Listen to English while you are doing something else like cooking.

Ana Luiza has shown us that it is possible to get better at English even if you can’t travel to an English-speaking country.

Go get started with some of these tips and techniques today!


Ana Luiza’s Bio:

Ana Luiza Bergamini is the founder of,  a website that teaches English to Portuguese speakers with a focus on comprehension and speaking, and features weekly tips and a podcast, and a multimedia course of basic English.

Ana has taught English for over ten years and she now lives in London, UK.


Talk to us in the comments!

Have you tried using any of these tips?

How did they work?

          AEE 136: Lisa from English Fluency Now Talks About Pacific Northwest Culture   

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Today we have a great guest! We have Lisa Biskup from English Fluency Now.

Lisa is from the Pacific Northwest region of the United States.

Lisa is going to introduce us to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest and she is going to show us 4 things that are different or unique about her region.


4 Things That Are Unique About the Pacific Northwest:

  • People enjoy the outdoors: People are focused on the environment and spending time outdoors. Even though it rains a lot, people like to get out and when it’s nice out, people spend a lot of time sailing, boating kayaking, hiking, etc. The temperatures are mild throughout the year and it’s not “painful” to be outdoors.
  • They value local, organic food: A lot of people in this area value organic and local food, grass-fed beef, etc. There are a lot of farmers’ markets that people go to regularly. There is a huge market for this kind of natural food.
  • A vibrant coffee culture: Starbucks started here! Starbucks brought the coffee culture to Seattle but in Washington there are tons of local coffee roasters and local cafes. The local shops often roast their own blends and have followers. If you are visiting the US, it’s a great idea to go into a cafe or the same cafe every day for several days. You can meet real local people at these places. Try starting a conversation with them.
  • A progressive political culture: A lot of people value things like the environment, gay marriage, and other social issues. Medical marijuana is now legal. The minimum wage has just been increased from $9 per hour to $15 per hour. This is considered a “living wage.”

Visit Lisa’s website at


Bonus vocabulary term: Crunchy

This term can be used as an adjective and it means that people like to spend time in nature.

It’s an American English slang term.


Lisa's Bio:

Lisa Biskup is the founder of English Fluency Now, Inc. and the creator of the English Fluency Now podcast.

She works as a private English language coach, helping motivated adult learners reach their fluency goals.

Her audio immersion program "Success with Stories" trains learners to become powerful English speakers, so that they can speak English with confidence and ease. Lisa is a certified Bilingual/TESOL teacher who has enjoyed working with English learners for over 20 years.

Visit Lisa's website at


Have you visited the Pacific Northwest? What did you like about it?

Could you live there? Does the culture match your personality?

Let us know in the comments!

          Zillow Backs Off Threat to Sue McMansion Hell   

Zillow will stop its legal dogging of N.C.-bred Kate Morgan, founder of the viral architecture blog McMansion Hell, and Morgan is back online.

Artist/sound designer Morgan, of Southern Pines and UNC-Greensboro, received a cease-and-desist letter early this week from the $8 billion Seattle corporation for using pictures derived from Zillow. She shut down her shoestring, highly popular site, but not for long.

During a phone interview Thursday from Baltimore, she said her site is back up, but she also said she's backing off the use of Zillow pictures.

"I don't need them," Morgan said.…
          AEE 120: Effortless English Podcast Host AJ Hoge Gets “Emotional” with All Ears English   

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Do you know why it’s important to learn English with emotion? Today we have a special guest on the show who is going to show you a new way to learn English to finally succeed! AJ Hoge is the founder of Effortless English. AJ believes... Read More

The post AEE 120: Effortless English Podcast Host AJ Hoge Gets “Emotional” with Lindsay & Gabby appeared first on All Ears English Podcast | Real English Vocabulary | Conversation | American Culture.

          The Internet of everything water   

Imagine a world where your spice cabinet reminds you to buy salt, or your cell phone sends a text message about the amount of water left in your water tank. These are the wonders of the Internet of things (IoT).

It has been over a decade since Kevin Ashton, co–founder of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Auto-ID Center (now Auto-ID Labs), coined the term Internet of Things to describe the network and communication of physical objects that have an IP address for the Internet.

          Durante Rentals Chris Jones Wins CFO Innovation Award   

Durante Rentals Co-Founder & CFO Chris Jones Honored at the 2017 CFO Innovation Conference & Awards

(PRWeb June 30, 2017)

Read the full story at

          With $8.8M Raised, Is This The Ultimate Machine Learning Tool?   

In Episode #705, Nathan interviews Scott Clark. He’s the co-founder and CEO of SigOpt, a Y-Combinator and Andreessen Horowitz backed, optimization as a

The post With $8.8M Raised, Is This The Ultimate Machine Learning Tool? appeared first on Nathan Latka.

          A Son Saving His Mom With Health Tech Product That Recognizes Seizures   

In Episode #704, Nathan interviews Eric Dolan. He’s the co-founder and CEO of Neutun. He has 5 years of startup experience and business

The post A Son Saving His Mom With Health Tech Product That Recognizes Seizures appeared first on Nathan Latka.

          Comment on Are they really my parents? by Cheryl Greene   
Carolyn, I'm so sorry you have breast cancer. I had metastatic, triple negative, inflammatory breast cancer 21 years ago. That's an aggressive cancer, but I'm here today, which I hope is an encouragement to others. You are correct that two O+ parents can not have a child who is A-. You are in a tough position. Since your father has passed away, you can not confirm his blood type. Sadly, blood types are often different than people think they are. This can happen because there was a lab error, a reporting error or inaccurate memory. So for instance, if both parents are O+, they could have a child that's O+ or O-. Or if one parent was A+ and the other was O+, they could have a child who is O+, O-, A+ or A-. If your father was still living there are inexpensive DNA tests that are 99.99% accurate. If this is terrible important to you and you have some samples of his DNA (root of a hair for instance) there are expensive ways to have DNA tests run, but I'm afraid I don't have information about them. I wish I could offer you the closure you're looking for, but I'm afraid I can not. I hope that helps. Best, @MsGreene Note: I am the co-founder of, but I am not <a href="/meet-dr-greene/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Dr. Greene</a> and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.
          Tommys Honour 2016 WEB-DL XviD MP3-FGT   
Tommys Honour 2016 WEB-DL XviD MP3-FGT
Tommys Honour 2016 WEB-DL XviD MP3-FGT
Language: English
1.42 GiB | 1h 52mn | 1 804 Kbps | AVI | 720x384 | MPEG Audio, 48.0 KHz, 2 channels, 192 Kbps
Genre: Biography | Drama | Romance | Sport
IMDB info :

In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy's Honour - an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.


Featuring Bassem Eid Founder of the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group Founder of the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring G

The post appeared first on EMET.

          The power of an ecosystem: Salesforce, FinancialForce and Traction on Demand get Synergistic   
A beautiful example of symbiosis and justification for the term “ecosystem.” While attending FinancialForce’s CommunityLive conference recently I took the opportunity to sit down with Greg Malpass, founder and CEO of Traction on Demand. Traction is a Salesforce consulting…
          Reflection: Don’t lose sight of the things that matter most…   
__”Treasure your family love, love for your spouse, love for your friends. Treat everyone well and stay friendly with your neighbors.” (Attributed to Steve Jobs, founder of Apple). Most people would agree that Steve Jobs is probably the greatest entrepreneur who ever lived, and the greatest tech innovator of our Continue Reading →
          James O’Keefe Explains the Media’s Real Fake News is How they Obfuscate Reality   

Project Vertias founder and leader James O'Keefe appeared on Stefan Molyneux's Freedomain Radio on Thursday afternoon for a discussion about what is going on behind the scenes at CNN.

The post James O’Keefe Explains the Media’s Real Fake News is How they Obfuscate Reality appeared first on The Constitution.

          A start-up investor used his power 'for sexual gain.' Now the tech industry is challenging the power dynamic   

The technology industry is built on a model where venture capitalists have lots of leverage. Start-up founders, after all, regularly beg them for the cash needed to turn nascent ideas into viable businesses.

But that’s a power dynamic with dangerous consequences, as a sexual harassment scandal...

          A decade since its birth, here are 5 things you didn’t know about the iPhone   
Thursday marked the 10-year anniversary of when Apple launched the original iPhone. Now, the device seems like an extra appendage to most millennials, but it has taken many smaller milestones along the way. View the gallery above to see some of the lesser-known highlights in the iPhone's 10-year history >> The late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was arguably a master at presenting products that frequently received “oohs” and “ahs” at keynotes, especially when he revealed the iPhone in 2007. But…

          Traders who left banks for hedge funds heading back to banks   
Traders who fled banks for hedge funds are on their way back to Wall Street. This month, Barclays PLC hired Chris Leonard, a founder of ...
          Chuck Renslow, founder of International Mr. Leather, dies   
CHICAGO — Chuck Renslow, 87, a longtime pillar of the LGBTQ community in Chicago and around the world, has died after multiple long-term health issues, Windy City Times reports. Renslow reigned over a seven-decade empire, starting more than two dozen businesses—bars, discos, photo studios, health clubs, bathhouses, gay magazines and newspapers, hotels, restaurants and bookstores. He fostered organizations and dealt with Mafia […]
          PC17: Bag Balm introduces new sizes to keep cyclists, pets, and cows comfortable for centuries to come   

Bag Balm was probably one of the most unexpected exhibitors at PressCamp, but then again, that’s why they were there. One of those products you either know of, or have never heard of, Bag Balm got its start back in 1899 – literally through the hands of founder, John Norris. Like many northern climates in […]

The post PC17: Bag Balm introduces new sizes to keep cyclists, pets, and cows comfortable for centuries to come appeared first on Bikerumor.

          About The EDITOR   
Extracted from first issue Vol.1 - printed April/May1992

Trevor K. Nel, Founder and Managing Director of Growth Holdings (Pty) Ltd, is one of those rare and unique individuals who has paid his dues in experience.

By the tender young age of 35 he had progressed from failure in matric and University drop-out to part-time lifeguard, to employee, to manager, to small business entrepreneur, to Franchisee, to Franchisor, to Director of Companies, (Private and Listed).

Highly regarded as a public speaker ranging from Share Market Investment to Motivation Techniques and Entrepreneurial Business Skills, Trevor has the extraordinary capability of rousing people of all levels to respond to his message.

His many achievements include being:

- an Exec. Board Member of the South African Franchise Assoc.;
- running 10 Comrades Marathons;
- paddling 10 Duzi Canoe Marathons;
- swimming 15 Midmar Mile Marathons;
- the 2nd person to attain 10 gruelling Natal Iron Man finishes;
- playing Provincial (Natal) and S.A. Universities Waterpolo
- developer of many business concepts & Dir. of Companies.

These and many other interesting extra-mural activities - like taking up the plight of minority shareholders versus the might of S.A.’s heavyweight Financial Institutions and winning - have laid a foundation of experience, determination and drive, which all readers can trust and aspire to.
          Trump loves to say media companies are 'failing' — here's how they're actually performing   

Trump watching Super BowlReuters/Carlos Barria

President Donald Trump often labels media companies as "failing." He's taken shots at BuzzFeed during press conferences. He's repeatedly pounded on CNN, and particularly enjoyed that network's recent journalism stumble.

And of course, Trump has hammered the MSNBC show "Morning Joe" this week, causing a political firestorm that has stretched across both parties.

If you follow the advertising business, you'd not be surprised to hear that traditional media business models are under a lot of pressure as consumer consumption habits are going through rapid changes driven by technology.

But here's an ongoing question: are the media companies Trump refers to as failing" actually failing? 

Here's a look at how these companies are performing from an audience and financial perspective.


"Failing" CNN

Screenshot via CNN

CNN is a frequent Trump target.

But CNN just enjoyed a 39% jump in it ratings for adults aged 25 to 54, reported Variety.

It's true that a few years ago, CNN was really struggling. But lately all of cable news networks have enjoyed a resurgence, as Ad Age's Anthony Crupi noted recently on Twitter.


Nielsen says that CNN averaged over 1 million viewers during prime time during the second quarter of this year.


CNN's parent company Time Warner pulled in  $7.74 billion during its most recent quarter, a jump of 5.8% versus last year, reported Deadline. But ad sales were down for the company's cable networks.

'Low rated' 'Morning Joe'

Morning Joe

This week, President Trump has been in attack mode when it comes to the MSNBC show.


"Morning Joe" averaged just under 1 million viewers during the second quarter of this year, according to Nielsen. That's up from roughly 600,000 average viewers a year ago and lands MSNBC just behind Fox News in the morning news race, per Nielsen.


MSNBC has been on a recent ratings surge, and SNL Kagan says the network will pull in $267.8 million this year, reports Variety. Parent company NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast Corp., pulled in close to $7.9 billion during the first quarter this year, up 14.7% versus the same period last year, reported the Los Angeles Times.

'Failing New York Times'

Getty Images/Mario Tama

President Trump has frequently referred to the New York Times as "failing."

It's true that at the height of the recession, the Times had to borrow money from Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. But recently, the company has seen a surge in subscriptions and scoops thanks in part to Trump. But there's no question newspapers continue to grapple with a declining circulation and print advertising landscape.


The Times' website exceeded 94 million unique users in May, per comScore, a jump of 36% from last year. 


The Times reported that it now has over 2.2 million digital-only subscribers. However, print ad revenue slipped 18% during its most recent quarter. Overall revenue landed at $399 million in the first quarter, up 5% versus the same period in 2016.

'Failing pile of garbage' Buzzfeed

Getty Images/Kimberly White

At a press conference earlier this year, Trump referred to BuzzFeed as a "failing pile of garbage."


According to comScore, BuzzFeed reached over 80.1 million unique users in May, an increase of 8% from the previous year. BuzzFeed has launched several sub-brands on social media platforms, such as the food-focused Tasty–which boasts of nearly 87 million followers on Facebook. Overall the company says it generates 9 billion views a month across all of its distribution outlets.


BuzzFeed has received two rounds of investment from NBCUniversal, putting its valuation at $1.5 billion. The company is projecting $350 million in revenue this year, according to Bloomberg.


Thomson Reuters

This past week, President Trump took a shot at the Washington Post and Amazon.

 Actually, Amazon doesn't technically own the Washington Post, founder Jeff Bezos does. 


The Washington Post's web traffic exceeded 80.7 million unique users in May, up 28% versus the same month in 2016, according to comScore. The media company has produced a number of big scoops this past year.


The company does not report its revenue publicly, but according to Politico Washington Post went on a hiring spree following the 2016 election. 

ABC, CBS, other TV networks

Michael Yarish/Warner Bros.

Trump has labeled several other big TV networks as 'failing' though it's not always clear what he's referring to.


CBS has one of the top shows on TV in "The Big Bang Theory," while ABC has a long-running hit in "Scandal."


While primetime TV ratings continue to shrink, ABC just reported that it was able to achieve high single-digit rate increases during the recently completed "upfront" ad sales period.

Meanwhile, CBS said that its first quarter revenue was $3.34 billion down from $3.59 billion during the same quarter last year when the network aired the Super Bowl.

Vanity Fair "way down, big trouble, dead"

Vanity Fair/Annie Leibovitz

Last year, Vanity Fair posted a scathing review of one of President Trump's restaurants, and he did not like it.

There's no doubt that Vanity Fair is facing a tough market for print advertising. Still, the company reported an immediate jump in business following Trump's tweet.


Vanity Fair nabbed 13,000 new subscriptions within 24 hours of Trump's social media response, according to Poynter. The magazine says it reeled in 107,460 new subscribers from December of last year through June, a jump of 365% from the same time period the year prior.


Parent company Conde Nast is private and does not report revenue data publicly.

See Also:

          How U.S. and S. Korea differ on approaches to N. Korea   
President Trump welcomed South Korean President Moon Jae-in to the White House Thursday night. They're meeting to work on a joint policy to deal with the nuclear threat from North Korea. Eurasia Group founder and president Ian Bremmer joins "CBS This Morning" to provide context for the meeting and discuss the leaders' differing approaches. Bremmer also addresses President Trump's upcoming meeting with Russia's President Putin at the G20 summit in Germany.

          Tommy’s Honour (2016)   

Watch Tommy’s Honour 2016 Full Movie Free Online. In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy’s Honour – an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf. Released: 14 April 2017 Genres: Biography, Drama, Romance Director: Jason […]

The post Tommy’s Honour (2016) appeared first on

          (USA-PA-Bethlehem) MSW Medical Social Worker Home Health Per Diem   
Reference #: 2107_18327 Overview BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an energetic and experiencedLicensed Medical Social Worker, MSW, for a per diem opportunity performing home health visits for our office located in Media, PA. This office covers territories in Delaware County, PA. Prior home care experience preferred, but not required. As a Medical Social Worker, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides skilled nursing and rehabilitative care to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 200 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. Responsibilities Making home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. Assist our team in understanding the social and emotional factors related to our clients' health problems. Provide clinical social evaluations and plan appropriate interventions based on evaluation findings. Identify appropriate community resource referrals to address the client's and the family's practical and environmental needs. Act as an advocate for both the client and the family to navigate the patient through the community system. Participate in the development of the total plan of care with the multidisciplinary team of BAYADA clinicians, as appropriate. Develop and maintain contracts with public and private agencies as resources for the patient. Educate and instruct patients, family members, or other patient representatives in community resources to promote the patient's health, safety, well-being, and independent living. Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to patient care management and services provided utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. Qualifications A minimum of a Masters in Social Work, with at least 2 years of community-based experience. Accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education, as demonstrated by school transcript or degree. Must be a Licensed Social Worker. Home care experience a plus. Demonstrated ability to read, w... For full info follow application link. BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran status.
          (USA-PA-Bethlehem) MSW, Medical Social Worker, Home Health, Per Diem   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an energetic and experienced Licensed Medical Social Worker, MSW, for a per diem opportunity performing home health visits for our office located in Media, PA. This office covers territories in Delaware County, PA. Prior home care experience preferred, but not required. As a Medical Social Worker, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides skilled nursing and rehabilitative care to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 200 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Making home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Assist our team in understanding the social and emotional factors related to our clients’ health problems. + Provide clinical social evaluations and plan appropriate interventions based on evaluation findings. + Identify appropriate community resource referrals to address the client’s and the family’s practical and environmental needs. + Act as an advocate for both the client and the family to navigate the patient through the community system. + Participate in the development of the total plan of care with the multidisciplinary team of BAYADA clinicians, as appropriate. + Develop and maintain contracts with public and private agencies as resources for the patient. + Educate and instruct patients, family members, or other patient representatives in community resources to promote the patient's health, safety, well-being, and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to patient care management and services provided utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. + A minimum of a Masters in Social Work, with at least 2 years of community-based experience. + Accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education, as demonstrated by school transcript or degree. + Must be a Licensed Social Worker. + Home care experience a plus. + Demonstrated ability to read, write, and effectively communicate in English. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. + Ability to travel to cases, as assigned. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares, and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include mileage reimbursement; weekly pay and direct deposit; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration. Founded in 1975 by J. Mark Baiada, BAYADA Home Health Care provides nursing, rehabilitative, therapeutic, hospice, and assistive care services to children, adults, and seniors in the comfort of their homes. Headquartered in suburban Philadelphia, BAYADA employs more than 23,000 field and office professionals who serve their communities in over 20 states from more than 300 offices. BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran status. #CBPost ID: 2017-18327 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-NC-Albemarle) RN, Registered Nurse, Home Health, Full-Time   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking a Registered Nurse (RN) for a full time position performing home care visits for our Cabarrus County Visits office located in Concord, NC. Prior home health experience and OASIS experience preferred. This position is for a RN to provide visits throughout Stanly County. As a home care nurse, you will be an integral member of a multidisciplinary health care team that provides skilled nursing and rehabilitative care to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. As a home care nurse, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides skilled nursing and rehabilitative care to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 200 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. Responsibilities include: + Making home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Performing assigned duties, including administration of medication, wound care, treatments, and procedures. + Monitoring clients' conditions; reporting changes to Clinical or Client Services Manager. + Following up with, executing, and properly documenting doctors' orders. + Performing client assessments as necessary. + Case management and coordination. Qualifications include: + A current license as a Registered Nurse in North Carolina. + A minimum of one year of recent, verifiable clinical (medical/surgical) experience. + Prior home care experience strongly preferred, but not required. + Graduation from an accredited and approved nursing program, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Demonstrated ability to read, write, and effectively communicate in English. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. + Ability to travel to cases as assigned. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include mileage reimbursement; weekly pay and direct deposit; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration, or contact Julie Simpson, Recruiter: 704-942-7754, ID: 2017-18322 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-CT-Westport) PT, Physical Therapist, Home Health   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an experienced Physical Therapist, PT, for a Full-Time opportunity performing home health visits in New Haven and surrounding towns. This office services adult and geriatric clients in their homes and senior living communities. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed PT is required. As a home care Physical Therapist, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides rehabilitative care and skilled nursing to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Make home visits to clients throughout New Haven County + Perform diagnostic tests and measurements, such as the mobility/range of joints, transfer status, stability, patterns and appearance of ambulation, strength and endurance of muscles, balance testing, and safety assessments. + Develop and implement appropriate individualized care plans, including manual therapeutic exercises, gait training, balance, and other interventions. + Continually assess and revise the physical therapy care plan, and participate with nursing in the multidisciplinary care plan, as appropriate. + Educate and instruct clients, family members, or other client representatives, in rehabilitative care and activities necessary to promote the client's health, safety, and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to client care management and services provided, utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. + A current Connecticut Physical Therapist license. + A minimum of one year of recent work experience as a Physical Therapist. + Graduation from a program approved by the American Physical Therapy Association or the Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation of the American Medical Association, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Medicare certified home health experience preferred. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal, organizational, and problem solving skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include medical, dental, and life insurance; mileage reimbursement; paid time off; weekly pay and direct deposit; scholarship opportunities; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. #CBPOST ID: 2017-18319 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-NC-Raleigh) PT, Physical Therapist, Home Health, Full-Time   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an experienced Physical Therapist, PT, for a full time opportunity performing home health visits for our Raleigh Visits office located in Raleigh, NC. This PT will service adult and geriatric clients on a per visit basis in territories throughout Wake County. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed PT is required. As a home care Physical Therapist, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides rehabilitative care and skilled nursing to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Make home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Perform diagnostic tests and measurements, such as the mobility/range of joints, transfer status, stability, patterns and appearance of ambulation, strength and endurance of muscles, balance testing, and safety assessments. + Develop and implement appropriate individualized care plans, including manual therapeutic exercises, gait training, balance, and other interventions. + Continually assess and revise the physical therapy care plan, and participate with nursing in the multidisciplinary care plan, as appropriate. + Educate and instruct clients, family members, or other client representatives, in rehabilitative care and activities necessary to promote the client's health, safety, and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to client care management and services provided, utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. + A current North Carolina Physical Therapist license. + A minimum of one year of recent work experience as a Physical Therapist. + Graduation from a program approved by the American Physical Therapy Association or the Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation of the American Medical Association, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal, organizational, and problem solving skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include weekly pay and direct deposit; scholarship opportunities; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration, or contact Doug Lanier, Recruiter: 813-539-3837, BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. ID: 2017-18316 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-NC-Raleigh) PT, Physical Therapist, Home Health, Part-Time   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an experienced Physical Therapist, PT, for a part-time opportunity performing home health visits for our Raleigh Visits office located in Raleigh, NC. This PT will service adult and geriatric clients on a per visit basis in territories throughout Wake County. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed PT is required. As a home care Physical Therapist, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides rehabilitative care and skilled nursing to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Make home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Perform diagnostic tests and measurements, such as the mobility/range of joints, transfer status, stability, patterns and appearance of ambulation, strength and endurance of muscles, balance testing, and safety assessments. + Develop and implement appropriate individualized care plans, including manual therapeutic exercises, gait training, balance, and other interventions. + Continually assess and revise the physical therapy care plan, and participate with nursing in the multidisciplinary care plan, as appropriate. + Educate and instruct clients, family members, or other client representatives, in rehabilitative care and activities necessary to promote the client's health, safety, and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to client care management and services provided, utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. + A current North Carolina Physical Therapist license. + A minimum of one year of recent work experience as a Physical Therapist. + Graduation from a program approved by the American Physical Therapy Association or the Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation of the American Medical Association, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal, organizational, and problem solving skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include weekly pay and direct deposit; scholarship opportunities; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration, or contact Doug Lanier, Recruiter: 813-539-3837, BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. ID: 2017-18315 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-PA-Exton) PT, Physical Therapist, Home Health, Weekends   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an experienced Physical Therapist, PT for a weekend opportunity performing home health visits for our Chester County Visits office, located in Exton, PA. This office services adult and geriatric clients throughout Chester County. Additional availability is needed during the weekday for orientation and on-going training. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed PT is required. As part of our Rehab team, our Physical Therapists function as essential parts of a multiple disciplinary team consisting of diversely skilled therapists. You will be actively involved in the following specialty programs: neuro rehab, joint replacement, balance dysfunction/falls intervention & cardiac / pulmonary therapy. We provide rehabilitative care and skilled nursing to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Make home visits to clients throughout Chester County, PA. + Perform diagnostic tests and measurements, such as the mobility/range of joints, transfer status, stability, patterns and appearance of ambulation, strength and endurance of muscles, balance testing, and safety assessments. + Develop and implement appropriate individualized care plans, including manual therapeutic exercises, gait training, balance, and other interventions. + Continually assess and revise the physical therapy care plan, and participate with nursing in the multidisciplinary care plan, as appropriate. + Educate and instruct clients, family members, or other client representatives, in rehabilitative care and activities necessary to promote the client's health, safety, and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions, and evaluations pertaining to client care management and services provided, utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. + A current Pennsylvania Physical Therapist license. + A minimum of one year of recent work experience as a Physical Therapist. + Home health experience preferred. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal, organizational, and problem solving skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include medical, dental, and life insurance; mileage reimbursement; paid time off; weekly pay and direct deposit; scholarship opportunities; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. #CBPost ID: 2017-18314 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-MA-Plymouth) PT, Physical Therapist, Home Health   
BAYADA Home Health Care is currently seeking an experienced Physical Therapist, PT for a Part-Time, benefit-eligible opportunity performing home care PT visits in Plymouth and surrounding towns. One year prior home care experience is preferred, but not required. As a home care Physical Therapist, you will be an integral member of a multi-disciplinary health care team that provides rehabilitative care and skilled nursing to clients, affording them the opportunity to receive the medical care required to remain at home. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 300 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. Responsibilities include: + Make home physical therapy visits to clients in homes. + Perform diagnostic tests and measurements, such as the mobility/range of joints, transfer status, stability, patterns and appearance of ambulation, strength and endurance of muscles, balance testing and safety assessments. + Develop and implement appropriate individualized physical therapy care plans, including manual therapeutic exercises, gait training, balance, and other interventions. + Continually assess and revise the physical therapy care plan, and participate with nursing in the multidisciplinary care plan, as appropriate. + Educate and instruct patients, family members, or other patient representatives, in rehabilitative care and activities necessary to promote the patient's health, safety and independent living. + Accurately document observations, interventions and evaluations pertaining to patient care management and services provided utilizing a state-of-the-art touch pad tablet. Qualifications include: + A current license as a Physical Therapist in Massachusetts + A minimum of one year of recent work experience as a Physical Therapist. + A graduate of a program approved by the American Physical Therapy Association or the Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation of the American Medical Association as indicated by school transcript or diploma + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively + Strong interpersonal skills, organizational skills and problem solving skills + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability + Benefits may include medical, dental, and life insurance; paid time off; weekly pay and direct deposit; scholarship opportunities; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. Founded in 1975 by J. Mark Baiada, BAYADA Home Health Care provides nursing, rehabilitative, therapeutic, hospice, and assistive care services to children, adults, and seniors in the comfort of their homes. Headquartered in suburban Philadelphia, BAYADA employs more than 23,000 field and office professionals who serve their communities in over 20 states from more than 300 offices. BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran status. #CBPost ID: 2017-18305 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-NC-Concord) RN, Registered Nurse, Home Health, Senior Living, Per Diem Weekends   
BAYADA Senior Living, a specialty program of BAYADA Home Health Care, is currently seeking an experienced Registered Nurse, RN, for a per diem weekend opportunity performing home health visits in senior living communities out of our Charlotte Senior Living office. The position is for a RN to cover territory in the Concord, NC. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed RN and one year of home health experience is required. BAYADA Senior Living offers a comprehensive continuum of care to its clients, including traditional home care under the Medicare Part A benefit. The foundation of the program is exceptional clinical care and relationship management as BAYADA clinicians become a true healthcare partner in the senior living communities. Communities include assisted living, independent living, senior congregate living, 55+ communities, and intermediate care facilities for clients with intellectual disabilities. Experience in senior living communities preferred but not required. The right candidate will have the opportunityl to move into a program manager position within a few months. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Making home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Performing assigned duties, including administration of medication, wound care, treatments, and procedures. + Monitoring clients' conditions; reporting changes to Clinical or Client Services Manager. + Following up with, executing, and properly documenting doctors' orders. + Performing client assessments as necessary. + Case management and coordination. + A current license as a Registered Nurse in North Carolina. + A minimum of one year of recent, verifiable clinical (medical/surgical) experience. + Prior home care experience strongly preferred, but not required. + Graduation from an accredited and approved nursing program, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Demonstrated ability to read, write, and effectively communicate in English. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. + Ability to travel to cases as assigned. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include mileage reimbursement; weekly pay and direct deposit; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration, or contact Julie Simpson, Recruiter: 704-942-7754, BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. ID: 2017-18308 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          (USA-NC-Charlotte) RN, Registered Nurse, Home Health, Senior Living, Per Diem Weekends   
BAYADA Senior Living, a specialty program of BAYADA Home Health Care, is currently seeking an experienced Registered Nurse, RN, for a per diem weekend opportunity performing home health visits in senior living communities out of our Charlotte Senior Living office. The position is for a RN to cover territory in South Charlotte. One year prior clinical experience as a licensed RN and one year of home health experience is required. BAYADA Senior Living offers a comprehensive continuum of care to its clients, including traditional home care under the Medicare Part A benefit. The foundation of the program is exceptional clinical care and relationship management as BAYADA clinicians become a true healthcare partner in the senior living communities. Communities include assisted living, independent living, senior congregate living, 55+ communities, and intermediate care facilities for clients with intellectual disabilities. Experience in senior living communities preferred but not required. The right candidate will have the opportunityl to move into a program manager position within a few months. BAYADA has a special purpose: to help people of all ages have a safe home life with comfort, independence, and dignity. We believe our clients and their families deserve the highest quality home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability - our core values. With more than 280 offices nationwide, founder Mark Baiada still maintains the same compassionate, human focus that made our first office unique in 1975. + Making home visits to clients in designated geographic territories. + Performing assigned duties, including administration of medication, wound care, treatments, and procedures. + Monitoring clients' conditions; reporting changes to Clinical or Client Services Manager. + Following up with, executing, and properly documenting doctors' orders. + Performing client assessments as necessary. + Case management and coordination. + A current license as a Registered Nurse in North Carolina. + A minimum of one year of recent, verifiable clinical (medical/surgical) experience. + Prior home care experience strongly preferred, but not required. + Graduation from an accredited and approved nursing program, as indicated by school transcript or diploma. + Demonstrated ability to read, write, and effectively communicate in English. + Ability to work independently and manage time effectively. + Strong interpersonal skills. + Solid computer skills; prior experience with electronic medical records (EMR) preferred. + Ability to travel to cases as assigned. BAYADA believes that our employees are our greatest asset: + Enjoy being part of a team that cares and a company that believes in leading with our values. + Develop your skills with training and scholarship opportunities. + Advance your career with specially designed career tracks. + Be recognized and rewarded for your compassion, excellence, and reliability. + Benefits may include mileage reimbursement; weekly pay and direct deposit; one-on-one training; recognition programs; referral bonuses; 401(k) with company match; and opportunities for career advancement. BAYADA believes that our clients and their families deserve home health care delivered with compassion, excellence, and reliability. Be part of a caring, professional team that is instrumental in providing the highest quality care while developing your career with an industry leader. Apply now for immediate consideration, or contact Julie Simpson, Recruiter: 704-942-7754, BAYADA Home Health Care, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and qualified applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability or veteran status. ID: 2017-18309 External Company Name: Bayada Home Health Care External Company URL:
          Music Video: Yung6ix (@Yung6ix) – Doinz Feat. DJ Neptune   

KKTBM present the brand new video “DOINZ” by their star front man Yung6ix featuring DJ Neptune. Shot and directed by Prince Dovlo. Watch and share! david mawuli A journalist, award-nominated blogger, music promoter and analyst, former headteacher, founder of Think Ghana Entertainment Media, owner of, and founder of TGM Awards. I love spending more time with my family! WhatsApp me +233-246-446-047

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           The Founders Of America - Jennins,F    
Bolt, C. (1996) The Founders Of America - Jennins,F. Review of: The Founders Of America by Jennins, F. Journal of American Studies, 30 . pp. 178-179. ISSN 0021-8758. (doi: ) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)
          Jessica Molaskey's PORTRAITS OF JONI Album to Launch New Imprint Ghostlight Deluxe   

Ghostlight Records will launch a special new label imprint, Ghostlight Deluxe with the latest release from celebrated actress and singer Jessica Molaskey, Portraits of Joni, on Friday, July 28. The album will be available for pre-order starting on Friday, July 7.

Ghostlight Deluxe will be curated by John Pizzarelli and Jessica Molaskey.

Featuring Molaskey's distinctly innovative interpretations, this album mixes elements of jazz, pop, folk and Americana into a uniquely powerful and poignant celebration of the iconic songwriter, Joni Mitchell. Portraits of Joni is produced by Jessica Molaskey, with John Pizzarelli serving as co-producer and Rob and Marcie Orley as executive producers. Album guest stars include Jazz luminaries Larry Goldings, Randy Brecker, Harry Allen and John Pizzarelli.

Jessica will be performing selections from the album in concert in Seattle (July 27-30), New York (August 8-12), Los Angeles (August 17-20), Santa Cruz (August 26) and Escondido, CA (August 27).

Starting on Friday, July 7, customers that pre-order the album via Apple Music will immediately receive the single "Help Me." For more information on the recording, visit

"Our mission at Ghostlight Deluxe," explains Jessica, "is to give theater artists an opportunity and a home to make solo recordings that are singular to their unique talents. Whether it be jazz, pop or the Great American Songbook, we are committed to making albums with the highest quality arrangements and musicianship that integrate all these styles. It is the challenge of Broadway actors to be chameleons, to step into a character and become someone other than themselves. What happens when a Broadway singer decides to step out of costume? What happens when they decide to expose their authentic self through song? Ghostlight Deluxe will produce recordings that don't necessarily feel the need to reach to the back of the balcony, but can effortlessly reach our hearts."

Kurt Deutsch, Ghostlight's founder and president, adds "John and Jessica have been my friends for 20 years. Their technical artistry, stylish interpretations and pure love of music are unparalleled. To collaborate with them on Ghostlight Deluxe is an honor for me and will be a joy for all to hear."

Reflecting on Portraits of Joni, Jessica says, "Joni Mitchell writes songs like a painter. One brush stroke here, another stroke there and you have a portrait of a fully realized soul. I continue to be amazed by how she can create a whole person with her words and music." Album highlights include contemplative takes on many of Mitchell's most popular composition such as "A Case of You," "Chelsea Morning" and the iconic "Both Sides Now," in addition to sly jazz-laced versions of "Dry Cleaner from Des Moines" and "Raised on Robbery."

When Portraits of Joni debuted as part of Lincoln Center's "American Songbook" series at The Allen Room, Molaskey was praised by Stephen Holden in the New York Times for her "uncompromising psychological realism along with an element of surprise that few singers bring to their material. In her voice, joy and pain are so intertwined that they're almost the same thing."Will Friedwald of The Wall Street Journal raved "Joni Mitchell would have to look hard to find a better interpreter and champion than Jessica Molaskey, a highly astute singer and interpreter who's proven her worth repeatedly in the fields of Broadway, cabaret, and jazz." In the Village Voice, David Finkle said "If Joni Mitchell isn't singing her own songs, it's hard to imagine anyone singing them better than Molaskey, a singer whose smoky voice carries the intellect and emotion necessary to capture Mitchell's often chilly immediacy."

Her husband John Pizzarelli, who will release his own album Sinatra & Jobim @ 50 the same day, is featured in a special combination of Mitchell's eternal "The Circle Game" and Antonio Carlos Jobim's 'Waters of March." According to the New York Times, the songs are "transformed a merry-go-round contemplation of the life cycle into an exalted hymn to the natural world." The classic "Little Green" is a vocal duet with their daughter Madeleine Pizzarelli. "All I Want " is presented as a tour-de-force piano solo by Larry Goldings, merged with Jessica's haunting vocal on "Blue."

"Joni's self portraits are beautiful and fragile and often filled with conflict and joy," continues Jessica. "Like the young Joni in 'In France They Kiss on Main Street,' she experienced her coming of age 'under neon signs' in a pinball arcade, while her mother was 'fading in a suburban room' or the overwhelmed Joni in 'A Case of You,' wallowing at the bar and drawing his face "on the back of a cartoon coaster in the blue TV screen light. These portraits are now timeless treasures of a new generations' Great American Songbook. They have been indelibly etched in my heart and soul forever."

Jessica Molaskey is a veteran of a dozen Broadway shows including the revival of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Sunday in the Park with George, which was nominated for nine Tony Awards. She appeared in A Man of No Importance at Lincoln Center, Parade (directed by Hal Prince), Dream, Tommy, Crazy for You, Les Misérables, City of Angels, Chess, Cats and Oklahoma! She most recently played the role of Marie in the City Center Encores! production of The Most Happy Fella. Off Broadway credits include Songs For A New World, Dream True, Wise Guys (Stephen Sondheim, Sam Mendes), and Weird Romance (All Original Cast Recordings).

Ms. Molaskey has five critically-acclaimed solo albums and has performed in concert from Lincoln Center to Carnegie and Disney Hall to the Montreal and Monterey Jazz festivals. For the past decade she and John Pizzarelli have enjoyed a two-month, sold-out engagement at the Café Carlyle in New York, to which Stephen Holden wrote in the New York Times: "They are as good as it gets in any entertainment medium. They are caviar in a world of canned tuna. Once you've acquired the taste, there is no substitute."

She has written songs for a dozen recordings, including the "Greed," part of a commission for Audra McDonald's Seven Deadly Sins at Carnegie Hall and "Cradle and All" with Ricky Ian Gordon for PBS American Songbook. Jessica recently played opposite Ms. McDonald, as Sister Bertha in the NBC-TV version of The Sound Of Music Live! She and her husband host the weekly radio show "Radio Deluxe," which airs in sixty cities around the United States and in Canada.


1. Help Me

2. Dreamland / Carey

3. A Case of You

4. The Dry Cleaner from Des Moines

5. Marcie

6. In France They Kiss On Main Street

7. The Last Time I Saw Richard

8. Raised on Robbery

9. Little Green

10. The Circle Game / Waters of March

11. All I Want / Blue

12. Chelsea Morning

13. Both Sides Now

14. Big Yellow Taxi

Ghostlight Records has become the leading independent force in Original Broadway Cast Recordings - building a library of over 150 records in the last 17 years, featuring some of the most successful Broadway musicals and solo albums by Broadway's brightest stars. Founded by Grammy Award winner Kurt Deutsch, Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight has won three Grammy Awards (for The Book of Mormon, In the Heights and Beautiful - The Carole King Musical) and is a frequent nominee, most recently for the OBCR of the 2016 "Best Musical" Tony Award nominee Bright Star by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell. Other notable recent releases include the 2017 "Best Musical Revival" Tony Award nominee Falsettos, the 2016 "Best Musical Revival" Tony Award nominee She Loves Me, the 2015 "Best Musical" Tony Award nominee Something Rotten! andDisney's Newsies. The label has also released solo albums from Patti LuPone, Billy Porter, Sutton Foster, Adam Pascal, Lea DeLaria, Kelli O'Hara, Ben Vereen, Christine Ebersole and more. The label continues to support the new generation of musical theatre composers with their extensive relationships with Michael John LaChiusa and Michael Friedman, as well as Lin-Manuel Miranda, Tom Kitt, Pasek & Paul, Joe Iconis, Ryan Scott Oliver, Shaina Taub, Dave Malloy, Kerrigan & Lowdermilk and Adam Gwon. The label recently created a new joint publishing venture with Razor & Tie to represent songwriters that fuse theatrical and pop music. Sh-K-Boom Entertainment is a producer of the acclaimed film version of The Last Five Years, written and directed by Richard LaGravenese and starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.

          New Batman and Joker comic coming from Image co-founder Marc Silvestri   

During the heyday of the big mid-'90s comic book boom, Top Cow's Marc Silvestri (The Darkness, Uncanny X-Men, Witchblade) was one of the brightest stars of the industry, along with Rob Liefeld, Jim Lee, Erik Larsen, Whilce Portacio, Jim Valentino and Todd McFarlane, who all branched out and formed Image Comics in 1992. Silvestri's Cyberforce and Stryke Force were two of my favorite titles to pack inside my UCLA book bag and smuggle into class.

          Another CNN Producer Exposed By Project Veritas: American Voters “Are Stupid As Shit”   
– Another CNN Producer Exposed By Project Veritas: American Voters “Are Stupid As Shit”: Content originally published at Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe has just capped off a week of destroying CNN’s last shred of credibility with a Friday morning release of another undercover encounter with an employee of the beleaguered network. Jimmy Carr, a hate-filled Associate ... Read more
          Monetary LLC President Shelley Plomske Elevated to CEO   

DENVER, June 29, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Monetary LLC Chairman Jeff Katz today announced that Shelley Plomske, co-founder and president, is assuming the role of CEO in addition to her other duties. Monetary rolled out its connected commerce platform for POS developers and dealers earlier...

          Windsor Store CEO Leon Zekaria Shares his Story at Engage   
All of us at Aptos are extremely proud to have had Leon Zekaria, CEO and founder of Windsor Store, share the story of his personal journey as part of the WIndsor store business, founded in 1937. Today they operate hundreds of stores and are on a rapid growth path. Leon joined us at Engage to share their journey and … Continue reading Windsor Store CEO Leon Zekaria Shares his Story at Engage
          Shark Tank Competitor 3 – TruRating   
Georgina Nelson, Founder and CEO of TruRating wants to provide business insight at the exact point of sale. They ask 1-second questions about rating the service received during the experience. With 1 billion ratings expected via the platform by end of 2017 and 88% of shopper response rate, retailers of all sizes in any vertical stand to benefit … Continue reading Shark Tank Competitor 3 – TruRating
          Shark Tank Contestant 2 – Salesfloor   
Salesfloor Co-Founder and CEO Oscar Sachs take the stage to explain how Salesfloor allows store associates to sell to customers online the same way they do in store. With over 10K associates on platform since launching in 2015 and 100% of pilots leading to rollouts among a roster of big name retailers across verticals,. Imagining the … Continue reading Shark Tank Contestant 2 – Salesfloor
          Black Girls are viewed as Less innocent than White Girls   
Michael Imhotep founder of The African History Network discusses a new study that states Black Girls are viewed as Less innocent than White Girls!  He also does a Preview of his Online Course - "Ancient Kemet, The Moors & The Maafa: Understanding The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade What They Didn't Teach You In School" taught by Michael Imhotep founder of The African History Network.  REGISTER TODAY: Next Class is Friday, June 30th, 7:00pm - 9:00pm EST - REGISTER FOR THE LIVE ONLINE COURSE - "Ancient Kemet, The Moors & The Maafa: Understanding The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade What They Didn’t Teach You In School” with Michael Imhotep, talk show host, researcher, lecturer and founder of The African History Network.  Register for our 12 Hour, 6 Week Online Course.  This course is only $40.  All Sessions Are Recorded and can be viewed anytime. Register here
          The Optimum Return Network with Dr. Larry D. Carnes!!!   
Social Media: WEBSITES:, TWITTER:,   LINKEDIN: Type in: Larry Carnes,  FACEBOOK: Coach Biography: Dr. Larry is the founder and Senior Pastor of Larry Carnes Ministries and Covenant Cutters Ministries International. In addition he is the CEO and President of Optimum Life Coach. Dr. Carnes is committed to serving by empowering and transforming others to experience the very best that life has to offer. Dr. Carnes is a Certified Professional Life Coach through Dream Releaser Coaching. Business Information: Optimum Life Coach is committed to people! So committed in fact that we assist by helping them navigate the journey of life to live more fruitfully, more effectively, and more abundantly. We focus on Transformation by Empowering and Transforming from the inside out. It’s the art of assisting others to achieve extraordinary results in life, and unlocking a person's potential to maximize their growth. Services Offered: Relationship Coaching, Personal Development, Servant Leadership Coaching, Group Coaching, Business Coaching Website:
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Live with the woman who started it all, Dr. Pat Bacilli!   
GuestDr. Pat Baccili is the founder of Transformation Talk Radio and helps individuals and organizations break through their limiting Crust so they can reach their unlimited potential. Together we will be diving in to discover how you can break through your own upper limit and reach for your biggest dreams. 
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Raising Happy Successful Children in the 21st Century   
EpisodeKelly will be on with the founders of The Successful Child Trisha Pasternak- Berliner and Berit Rostad. Tune into learn how to help support and build a child’s positive/healthy self-esteem, decrease difficult behaviors and help give their child an academic competitive edge. 
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Premier of Shine On Radio's Weekly Show with Special Guest Vicki Reynolds    
EpisodeWelcome to our introductory show! We can't wait to share with you what Shine On Radio is all about. Here we celebrate what makes you, YOU! On today's show you will be hearing from founder Kelly all about the Shine On Movement. Plus, an interview with a special guest Vicki Reynolds about her own journey to SHINE! 
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Diving into 2016 with the Shine On Girl!   
GuestKelly, founder of Shine On Movement, and Dr. Pat will be talking about how to let go of resolutions and instead create visions & intentions for the New Year!
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Shining On with this Holiday Season with Dr. Pat and Co-host Kelly Wadler   
GuestMeet Kelly, founder of Shine On Movement. Today she will be sharing how to stay grounded, healthy and vibrant this holiday season.
          Shine On Radio with Kelly - Find Your Shine!: Shining On with Co-host Kelly Wadler and Dr. Pat   
GuestMeet Kelly, founder of the Shine On Movement. Today she will be sharing how through body positivity, rocking nutrition and self-acceptance Kelly took her battle against her body and transformed it into a movement. She will go into detail how she now helps other brilliant women celebrate the skin they are in and own their SHINE!
          TOP WAYS TO GET A BETTER NIGHT'S SLEEP TONIGHT!!! Shawn Stevenson | Health | Fitness | Inspiration | Self-Help | Inspire   

If you’ve ever wanted to feel healthier, more rested, sharper of mind, and get a fantastic night’s rest, then do we have the sleep smarter show for you! 

Today I’ll be talking with Shawn Stevenson, founder of the Model Health Show, and author of the best-seller Sleep Smarter.

And that’s just what I want to talk with him about today, about essential strategies to sleep your way to a better body, better health, and bigger success. 

That plus we’ll talk about madden football, why we want to sleep through the melatonin show, why we want to bring back cortisol and david hasselhoff, why it’s not cool to wear shades, the hormonal goodfellas, the power of the big O, why position matters, and you should beware the midnight strangler,

Health & Fitness Self-Improvement & Self-Help topics include:

  1. How do we make sleep sexy?
  2. How do we get more quality out of your sleep
  3. How to optimize your sleep
  4. Eric Thomas – had no idea was optimizing his sleep
  5. What in the world is twinkie sleep?
  6. How do you get more nutrition out of your sleep
  7. What’s pseudo sleep?
  8. Why do we need to get the light down?
  9. What’s going on in our brain when we sleep
  10. What’s going on with the hypothalamus
  11. What’s the glymphatic system?
  12. How do we move past the fear of missing out
  13. What is serotonin and what does it have to do with sleep?
  14. Why a twinkie can trash your sleep
  15. What does melatonin have to do with anything?
  16. Why is it important to walk first thing in the morning
  17. What’s the deal with cortisol, and why has it gotten a bad rap?
  18. Why is i.flux of f.lux?
  19. What can we learn about sleep and weight-loss
  20. What’s crucial to know about caffeine and sleep
  21. What does cold have to do with sleep
  22. What they do in Finland and Sweden for babies to sleep
  23. What’s it mean to sleep cool but rock socks
  24. What ayurvedic medicine has to do with sleep
  25. What’s the danger of the graveyard shift?
  26. What’s the connection between staying up late and high blood pressure
  27. What staying up late has to do with fat
  28. Why proper sleep is more impactful on health and appearance than diet and exercise combined
  29. What’s the importance of the big ‘o’ and sleep
  30. What are the benefits of meditation and sleep
  31. Why meditation makes such a big different with your sleep
  32. Why meditation breathing, or mindfulness and breathing improves your sleep
  33. Why is grounding or ‘earthing’ so important for your sleep – vitamin G (for ground)
  34. What advice for parents to help kids / children sleep at night
  35. Where can you find sleep smarter or includes free bonus 21 video series, and look up his The Model Health Show podcast

 Shawn Stevenson of The Model Health Show on The Power of Great Sleep & How to Get It! Weight Loss | Fitness | Diet | Nutrition | Inspiration | Inspirational | Spiritual | Spirituality | Meditation | Motivational | Self-Improvement | Self-Help | Inspire

For More Info Visit:

          ▂ ▃ ▅ ▆ ▇ ▉ KILL da CHILL! BASS BOX Edition ▉ ▇ ▆ ▅ ▃ ▂   


The guys from Poznań's crew of KILL da CHILL announce helluva party this Friday (22 June 2012) in Stara Rzeźnia (Old Slaughterhouse!) in Poznań. On two scenes Street Bass vs Heart Beats, sick dubstep sub-basses (with occasional wobbles) will meet glitchey IDM nu beatz footwork what u call it funk. A bass champion Trolley Snatcha representing UK's cult label Dub Police will headline the Street Bass stage showing his top-notch DJ skills and very distinctive beat, which is a kind of trademark of his music explorations. Who knows he may even show some surprises :) He will be supported by Polish artists Blackleg hailing from the holy city of Częstochowa, Grabadub one of the founding fathers of dubstep scene in Poland, and the Foxhole crew (the organizers of the event) represented by Paszczak, Julian De Narco and Petey. 

However, the real treat awaits on the other scene. Heart Beats will feature two producers who bravely stand out with their music from the mass of mediocre copy-cats flooding the nu-beat / bass / urban scene. I hope Slugabed  requires no introduction to the readers. I have been his devout fan since the beginnings of my blog a few years ago. Though young of age, Sluga has already managed to create his unique sound of post hip-hop beats built on ulta heavy bass base. After a few successful releases (among others on Planet Mu) he has recently added to his CV a very good full-length album on Ninja Tune. This dude knows how to rock the house in its most literal sense. Be There or Be Square!!! The more so, as he will be joined by B.Bravo, another hot name on my best producers list (don't confuse hot with overhyped please). Born in California, up-and-coming star of the West Coast Modern Funk Movement is also a co-founder (with Salva) of one of my favorite labels - Frite Nite releasing music by e.g. Nasty Nasty, Eprom or Epcot. Expect G-Funk and R'n'B arranged in a surprisingly modern way, with distorted vocoder samples and twisted beats. Actually, I can't wait to lay my hands and ears on the LP by B.Bravo to be released this year. I'm absolutely positive Slugabed and B.Bravo will f.....g funk you out till you bleed in the Old Slaughterhouse :) The young butchers will be supported by Polish artists, incl. Minoo a collaborator of an interesting label Mad-Hop and Polish Asfalt Records and the Foxhole crew represented by RAQ, Porcus Uzurpator and Top Cut.

          Spitfire Audio Union Chapel Organ KONTAKT-MAGNETRiXX | 7.26 GB |   
Spitfire Audio Union Chapel Organ KONTAKT-MAGNETRiXX TEAM MAGNETRiXX | 13 June 2017 | 7.26 GB A legendary Organ built by the master Henry Willis, in a legendary London venue; the beautiful Union Chapel. From angelic soft delicacies to roaring thunder, this instrument is one of the finest examples of 19th Century craftsmanship in the world, and gives you a Symphonic Orchestra of tones at your fingertips. The Organ at London's Union Chapel was built by Henry 'Father' Willis in 1877 specifically to match the size and acoustics of the building and is undoubtedly one of the finest in the world. Henry Willis who is regarded as the foremost organ builder of the Victorian era also built the organs at the Royal Albert Hall and St Paul's Cathedral. The Union Chapel Organ remains essentially unaltered. The only significant changes have been the replacement of the Choir Gemshorn 4ft by a 2ft Piccolo in 1909, the provision of electric blowing in the 1920s, and the installation of a balanced swell pedal in the 1940s. As an important example of 'Father' Willis's work, in 2012-13 the organ was fully restored by organ builders Harrison & Harrison based on historic principles. The original hydraulic blowing engines (water powered) have also been restored to working order by James Richardson-Jones and are retained as an alternative to electric blowing (one of very few left in the world!). It has three manuals, Swell, Great, Choir, and a full pedalboard. Since the restoration Union Chapel have been running a diverse concert programme around the organ including a brand new experimental organ festival launching in 2016. These concerts of all genres continually demonstrate how versatile the organ can be and that it is not simply a church instrument, but in fact the world's first synthesiser which can be incorporated into most genres of music. For more information on their programme please visit The chapel itself has a beautiful acoustic and has hosted artists such as Nils Lofgren, Ray Davies, Beck, Suzanne Vega, Nitin Sawhney, Ryan Adams, Lady Antebellum, Elton John, Ellie Goulding, Chris Martin, James Morrison, Amy Winehouse, David Byrne, Tori Amos, Bjork. BACKGROUND Spitfire co-founder Paul Thomson grew up sat on the organ stool. From playing in churches before he could reach the pedal board, to practicing at night locked alone in Worcester Cathedral as a teenager, he has always had a soft spot in his heart for this instrument. So after finding the perfect organ to sample this became a pet project. The organ is like an orchestra, from charming flutes to trumpets and trombones, with many interesting harmonic mixtures and options for voicing. You can set up different sounds on the manuals and pass from one to another, or combine them for a greatly amplified sound character. "The humble organist can have an orchestra of a thousand voices" - Marie Alain Paul and his colleagues at Spitfire waited a long time before selecting the organ they wanted to sample, and the timing was perfect with the restoration and the collaboration with the Union Chapel. They started the project back in 2013 and many hours were spent during the night recording! This instrument has bags of character and can go from extraordinarily soft and delicate to full thunder and power while never sounding slightly synthetic or brittle like some of the later instruments. As an instrument, the pipe organ has featured in many films and on many albums over the years, a sampling includes most recently Interstellar, Rollerball, 2001 A Space Odyssey, many of Danny Elfman's scores including his two Batman offerings, Koyaanisqatsi, The Omega Man, Interview With a Vampire, Patton and The Godfather. As a bonus feature Spitfire's team of sound designers have created 10 eDNA presets using the raw materials of the Organ, which have most recently featured in the 2016 Paul Feig reboot of Ghostbusters, plus a Dev Kit for the user to create their own unique Synths, Basses, Atmospheres and Rhythmic pulsing patches. GUIS THE OVERVIEW PANEL Gives you a quick and easy way to access, view and load the different articulations, mic mixes and essential controller functions which you can then re-assign to suit your workflow. GENERAL CONTROLS PANEL A deeper but still simple UI panel that allows you to tweak the general settings. How many round robins you would like and how you would like them to behave. How would you like memory to be organised alongside pitch options and how velocity works. home page: DOWNLOAD:
          6/30/2017: NEWS: STATE- BY- STATE   

Editor’s Note: This is an abbreviated State- By- State page. The full version will return. News from across the USA ALABAMA Huntsville: Gov. Kay Ivey says Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin will build its BE- 4 rocket engine in...
          IT Authorities Names Philip LaForge Chief Executive Officer   

Co-Founders and Co-CEO’s Jason Caras and Jason Pollner Move into New Roles as Co-Chairs of the IT Authorities Board of Directors

(PRWeb June 29, 2017)

Read the full story at

          Barracuda Co-Founder Michael Perone Steps Down as CMO, Remains on Board of Directors   

Barracuda Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Barracuda Networks, Inc.)CAMPBELL, Calif., June 30, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Barracuda Networks, Inc. (NYSE: CUDA), a leading provider of cloud-enabled security and data protection solutions, today announced that Co-Founder, Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President Michael Perone will step down as CMO...

          A Founder of Twitter Starting a New Company   

Biz Stone, one of Twitter founders, on Tuesday, June 28, 2011, announced that he was reducing his involvement in his micro-blogging site, to concentrate on a new company

twitter-bird logo

Tech Info - WASHINGTON - As quoted by AFP on Wednesday, June 29, 2011, this 37-years man wrote in his personal blog that he relaunched the Obvious Corporation, a company which gave birth to Twitter, along with Evan Williams and a former Google employee, Jason Goldman.

"Our plan is develops new projects for solve major problems. The Obvious Corporation developed system that helps peoples work together to improve the world," said Stone.

Evan Williams, who last year resigned from his position as Chief Executive of Twitter, also announced in past March that he was reducing his involvement in Twitter. He will remain on the board of directors Twitter, although will not be involved in the daily affairs.

Biz Stone who founded Twitter in 2006 with Evan Williams and Jack Dorsey, said that for the next he will continue to work in Twitter, but he added that he would not engage fully.

"Essentially, I will continue to dedicate my time to Twitter, whenever it needed," he concluded.
          Croft Lodge Studio by Kate Darby and David Connor has been announced as the winner of AJ Small Projects 2017   
Loving this award-winning preservation and conversion of a listed 300-year-old ruined cottage in Leominster, Herefordshire – complete with dead ivy and old birds’ nests! The jury described the 115m² scheme as ‘beautifully executed’, ‘unpretentious’, and praised the design for not ‘romanticising the ruin’. Kate Darby, founder of Kate Darby Architects said: ‘What is special about...
          Comment on Florida Legislature Passes Bill to Strengthen Stand Your Ground Law by Barry Wind   
This is not new law it is old law being returned to the accused. We are innocent until proven guilty. The founders of our country knew what the "government" could do to all they accused of a crime. So, we have one of our rights returned to us. Should we thank our elected government for following the Law? I don't think so!!!
          Jury at Andrew Loku inquest recommends giving Tasers to all front-line cops    

Annual anti-Black racism training for police, Tasers for all front-line officers and the collection of race-based data were among the key recommendations delivered by the jury Friday at the coroner’s inquest into the death of Andrew Loku.

Before handing down its 39 recommendations, the five-person jury also declared Loku’s death a homicide, although that finding carries no legal weight. The 45-year-old father of five was shot and killed by Toronto police Const. Andrew Doyle on July 5, 2015.

Other non-binding recommendations delivered by the jury Friday include:

  • Provincial collection of race-based data relating to all interactions involving police and persons in crisis, as well as funding for research and analysis of the data. The results of the analysis should be made public.

  • Exposing officers in training “to the perspectives and lived experience of racialized communities, the Black community and individuals with mental health issues and/or addictions.”

  • Amending the annual use-of-force recertification to include qualification in areas including mental health, anti-racism, and particularly anti-Black racism.

  • A continued emphasis on alternative methods of communication and de-escalation when an individual does not comply with the police challenge.

  • A 24/7 telephone crisis support line for individuals living in supportive housing and in mental health and addictions programs.

  • Additional funding for more nurses in order to staff mobile crisis intervention teams in each Toronto police division, 24 hours a day.

  • Additional funding for 911 operators to allow them to begin the de-escalation process during 911 calls.

  • Funding and supporting the participation of members of the mental health and addictions community, racialized communities and the Black community in training at police colleges.

Read more:

Police officer who shot Andrew Loku describes the last 21 seconds of his life: DiManno

Video shows moments before Andrew Loku was shot by police

Andrew Loku 911 call released: 'Oh my god, there was gunshots’

Ontario’s police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit, declined to lay criminal charges against Doyle last year, finding the use of force to be justified. The decision and the lack of transparency around the SIU’s investigation were met with outrage and sparked a protest outside police headquarters by Black Lives Matter Toronto that lasted 15 days.

After weeks of pressure, the government released a heavily redacted copy of the SIU report into Loku’s death, and appointed Court of Appeal Justice Michael Tulloch to conduct a sweeping review of police oversight bodies.

“If the police had followed the training, if the police had de-escalated, if the police had taken a bit more time then Andrew would still be here and there wouldn’t be the need for these types of recommendations,” Loku family lawyer Jonathan Shime said Friday.

“That being said, we heard about three weeks of evidence that covered a broad range of issues, and I think the jury listened very well, and most importantly, they really got that this proved to be another case — one more, too many — of a Black man dying at the hands of the police.

“The reality is, statistically, Black men are dying disproportionately at the hands of police in Toronto and Ontario, and police forces across the province need to figure out why that is and come to terms with that and ensure there are zero deaths of anybody, Black or white, at the hands of the police.”

The inquest had featured a long list of participants, including lawyers for Toronto police and its board, the Toronto Police Association, the Black Action Defence Committee (BADC), the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health's Empowerment Council, and Across Boundaries, a mental health organization serving racialized communities.

The parties were sometimes at odds about the purpose of the inquest, with tensions rising around the role racism may have played in Loku’s death.

While overseeing coroner Dr. John Carlisle had allowed for implicit, or unconscious bias to be part of the scope of the inquest, racism was not — leading to an 11th hour motion to allow for the explicit mention of racism.

“If these recommendations are adopted and put into force, I think we can avoid future deaths like Andrew’s,” said Across Boundaries’ lawyer, Howard Morton, who urged the government and police to immediately begin implementing the recommendations.

“This jury really got it. Right from the get-go, you could tell they were attentive, they asked very relevant questions, and they were completely open to our suggestion that anti-Black racism was clearly within the scope of this inquest.”

Black Lives Matter Toronto co-founder Sandy Hudson told the Star that some recommendations were promising, but highlighted that many have already been proposed before at previous inquests, attracting little or no action on the part of the police and government.

“This is the issue with the whole inquest process, where these recommendations are merely suggestions that police officers and the powers-that-be can choose to listen to or not listen to, and we’ve heard over the inquest process that they choose not to listen to them,” she said.

In more than two weeks of witness testimony and evidence, the jury heard the detailed circumstances of Loku’s 2015 fatal shooting, including from the officer who pulled the trigger.

Doyle, a 13-year police veteran, testified that he shot Loku as he advanced toward him, hammer raised, in the hallway of his apartment building, which is leased by CMHA to house people with mental health challenges.

Both Doyle and the rookie officer he was mentoring, Const. Haim Queroub, said they had been shouting at Loku to drop the hammer prior to the shooting.

In his closing address to the jury, Shime had stressed that Loku did not have to die, and was shot because “they let their fear of a black man with a hammer (8.5 metres) away overcome what should have been a compassionate and humane response.

“If only they had let compassion guide them instead of fear, if only they had let good sense and training guide them instead of panic, if only they had followed a multitude of recommendations made by previous inquests, then Andrew would be alive today.”

          The Orlando Massacre for Moderates   
So it’s come to this: the founder-editor of The New Moderate is politicizing the ghastliest mass-shooting in American history. Don’t those fifty dead and fifty-three wounded souls deserve better, you ask? Don’t we need to recognize their humanity, their innocence, their senseless victimization by a crazed fanatic, the plunging of their families into unimaginable grief? […]
          The first Cassini to explore Saturn was a person    

Space probe preparing to crash into ringed planet was named for an astronomical pioneer


TWO CASSINIS  The Cassini spacecraft has become famous for its stunning views of Saturn, including this image of the unlit side of the rings taken in 2012. But what do we know about the man Cassini was named for?

As the Cassini spacecraft plunges toward its death on Saturn, the world’s knowledge of the famous ringed planet continues to accumulate. Thanks to years of observations by the versatile probe, astronomers now know Saturn as intimately as macaroni knows cheese. But still hardly anyone outside the world of astronomy knows anything about Cassini — and I don’t mean the spacecraft, but the guy it was named for.

Gian Domenico Cassini was an Italian astronomer, born in Perinaldo in 1625, around the time that Galileo was battling the church over Copernicus’ revelation that the Earth orbits the sun. Cassini was attracted to poetry but was also good at math. He got his start in science via astrology, which back then was not considered quite as completely idiotic as it is today. In fact, astronomy itself was often supported by wealthy people in order to get better astrological forecasts. One such wealthy Italian, an amateur astronomer, was impressed with a pamphlet on astrology that Cassini had written; it earned him an invitation to work at the amateur’s observatory, near Bologna.

From the leading scientists at Bologna, Cassini learned the importance of using high-quality instruments to make the most precise measurements possible. His talents were soon recognized; by 1650 Cassini’s accomplishments and reputation earned him the chair in astronomy at the university in Bologna. He continued his research during the 1650s, taking a particular interest in comets.

Cassini was an old-school conservative kind of scientist, not even inclined to take Galileo’s side on the Earth-orbiting-the-sun issue. Cassini preferred Tycho Brahe’s position that the other planets orbited the sun, but the sun then orbited the Earth. (Later Cassini accepted the Copernican sun-centered solar system, but only half-heartedly.) Cassini also was no fan of Newton’s law of gravity.

Cassini’s work as an eminent Italian scientist was not limited to astronomy. Called on to referee a political dispute over the course of a river, he mastered hydraulics. Later he spent some time studying insects and experimenting on blood transfusions. None of that was as fun as astronomy, though, so he returned to the stars often. In addition to comets, he specialized in the sun and especially solar eclipses. Some of his best work resulted from the use of a meridian — a large sundial-like device for recording solar movements — that he designed and had installed on the top of a church steeple.

Cassini was also clever enough to know the value of cultivating useful friendships. In particular, he was on good terms with some skillful Roman lens makers who provided him with especially powerful telescopes. With such instruments Cassini was able to calculate the rotation rates of Jupiter and Mars accurately. (He gave Venus a shot, but it was harder.)

Even more impressively, Cassini accomplished a goal that had eluded Galileo by accurately describing the motions of the moons of Jupiter. It was Cassini’s work on Jupiter’s moons that allowed the Danish astronomer Olaus Rømer to measure the speed of light, establishing that light did not transit space instantaneously, as many (including Cassini) had believed.

Even before Rømer’s results, Cassini’s accomplishments made him famous enough to get offered a job in Paris. That job was actually a prime position with the new French Academy of Sciences, whose founders recruited savants from all over Europe to enhance the new academy’s prestige. So in 1669 Cassini moved to Paris. He didn’t fit in all that well; his French was sketchy and his authoritarian approach to things in general ticked some people off. But he eventually managed to develop a world-class astronomical observation program. He became a French citizen in 1673 and married the daughter of a French official wealthy enough to offer as part of the dowry a nice castle for a summer home. Cassini then forgot about his original plan to return to Italy and spent the rest of his life in France.

Story continues after image

Had his astronomical achievements ended with his departure from Italy, Cassini would have been an odd choice for the name of a spacecraft sent to study Saturn. But besides his administrative role at the French academy’s observatory, Cassini continued his own studies. And, having mastered Jupiter, he naturally moved on to Saturn. In 1671 he discovered Saturn’s moon Iapetus and found another, Rhea, the next year. Much later he detected the moons Tethys and Dione. He also thoroughly examined the disk around Saturn and discerned that it was not just one ring. He identified two prominent rings separated by a small gap — the thin black band between the two is now known as Cassini’s division. Cassini even guessed, more or less correctly, that the rings are made of small particles all orbiting Saturn in concert.

And so Cassini knew Saturn as intimately as anyone from his era, establishing sufficient Saturnian credentials to earn the honor of having a space probe named for him. Cassini the probe has now seen Saturn much more clearly than Cassini the man. But soon Cassini the probe will die and go blind; Cassini the man first went blind, two years before he died, in 1712.

Follow me on Twitter: @tom_siegfried

          Jonny Sun and Jonathan Zittrain on Joke Tweets, Memes, and Being an Alien Online   
Join Jonny Sun, the author of the popular Twitter account @jonnysun, for a conversation in celebration of his new book “everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too” by jomny sun (the aliebn). This debut illustrated book is the unforgettable story of a lost, lonely, and confused alien finding friendship, acceptance, and love among the creatures of Earth. Constructed from many of Jonny’s re-contextualized tweets, the book is also a creative thesis on the narrative formats of social media, and a defense of the humanity-fulfilling aspects of social media born out of his experiences on Twitter. About Jonny Jonathan Sun is the author behind @jonnysun. When he isn’t tweeting, he is an architect, designer, engineer, artist, playwright and comedy writer. His work across multiple disciplines broadly addresses narratives of human experience. As a playwright, Jonathan’s work has been performed at the Yale School of Drama, and in Toronto at Hart House Theater and Factory Theater. As an artist and illustrator, his work has been exhibited at MIT, Yale, New Haven ArtSpace, and the University of Toronto. His work has been appeared on NPR, Buzzfeed, Playboy, GQ, and McSweeney’s. In his other life, he is a doctoral student at MIT and Berkman Klein fellow at Harvard. About Jonathan Jonathan Zittrain is the George Bemis Professor of International Law at Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Professor of Computer Science at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Vice Dean for Library and Information Resources at the Harvard Law School Library, and co-founder of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society. His research interests include battles for control of digital property and content, cryptography, electronic privacy, the roles of intermediaries within Internet architecture, human computing, and the useful and unobtrusive deployment of technology in education. For more on this discussion visit:

          O’Keefe’s Third Undercover Film Exposes CNN’s Internal Culture Of Hate And The Actual Creation of Fake News   
Content originally published at Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe has just capped off a week of destroying CNN’s last shred of credibility with a Friday morning release of another undercover encounter with an employee of the...
          Performance Inspired and UFC announce new partnership   
Magnus Cedenbla

Performance Inspired is now the new official sports supplement of one of the biggest sports in the world: the UFC.

Performance Inspired co-founder (and current Men’s Fitness cover star) Mark Wahlberg announced the new partnership on Thursday, June 29, together with UFC President (and former Men's Fitness cover star) Dana White. Performance Inspired will now supply its line of sports products to the UFC Performance Institute with a “Performance Inspired Fueling Station,” according to the brands' announcement.

Along with the Fueling Station, Performance Inspired will have a place in the world-famous UFC Octagon, and on UFC's social and digital platforms.

“Inspiring people to be active and healthy is rewarding for me personally, and the charity element of our business is an added benefit,” Wahlberg said in the press release. “It’s one of the reasons we created Performance Inspired, as it’s all about giving back and helping athletes on any level maximize their true potential. UFC athletes need nutritional support, and we’re glad we can fill this necessity.”

“The UFC has the most comprehensive anti-doping program in sports, and we just opened a state-of-the-art performance institute at our new offices, so the health and performance of our athletes is essential to everything we do,” White said. “That’s why we’re partnering with Mark. The reason he’s been incredibly successful is because he does things the right way, so our fighters know his Performance Inspired products are top-quality, natural ingredients that are safe to use and will help them maximize their own performance.”

          The 10 Best Chemical-Free SPF Skincare Products of Summer 2017   

          Fact Checking Network Gets Backing From Soros, Radical Iranian Tycoon   

Good news. Your "facts" are about to be "checked" by George Soros.

If the whole fact checking paradigm that the media has blackmailed Facebook and Google into rolling into their results hadn't been sufficiently poisoned by naked partisanship and left-wing politics, the presence of the amateur embattled left-wing activists at Snopes, here comes the death knell for its credibility.

"Fact-checking has never been this important. Come define its future" is the Poynter headline. But its future has already been defined, the cheerful posting informs us, by its funders.

Thanks to $1.3 million in grant funding from the Omidyar Network and the Open Society Foundations, the IFCN can now expand its work. New initiatives will include an innovation fund to reward new formats and business models for fact-checking, an impact tracker to help evaluate and monitor the efficacy of this type of work, and a tool to turn the links fact-checkers use into a searchable database of trustworthy primary sources.

Everyone knows who radical leftist billionaire George Soros is.

Soros is the left's biggest radical sugar daddy. But somewhere up there, particularly for pro-terror sites, is Iranian tycoon Pierre Omidyar. 

Pierre Omidyar has financed a war on national security and Israel through anti-American sites such as The Intercept. 

When you understand that this is where the "international fact checking network" is getting its financing, you understand the kind of "fact checking" it will be doing. And whom you can expect to be doing it.

Facebook and Google's embedding of partisan left-wing "fact checking" sites is one of the greatest assaults on freedom of expression on the internet. And now the partisan sites are about to fall further into the fever swamps of left-wing extremism.

Congressional Republicans should call out Google and Facebook for their double standard in advocating Net Neutrality while pushing Opinion Bias.

          Workspace: Everything Old Is New Again, and Vice Versa   
The co-founder of a marketing and advertising agency blends media memorabilia with contemporary technology, while a steam train whistles outside.
          Two Audiences for Guillaume, One for Henri   
Photo: Cour grand-ducale
Yesterday, Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume welcomed Robert Glaesener, CEO of Talkwalker, as well as Raoul Mulheims, CEO et co-founder of Digicash Payments, at the palais for audiences. Today, Grand Duke Henri received members of Rugby Europe and the Fédération luxembourgeoise de Rugby (FLR) at the palais. The Grand Duke is, of course, also a father of at least one rugby player as Prince Sébastien was a member of Luxembourg's U18 team for two seasons. Visuals of all three audiences at the cour here, here and here.

          HK Yoga Teacher Series: Aleksandra Milewicz, Founder Of Bamboo Yoga   
How did yoga enter your life? I discovered yoga after moving to Hong Kong six years ago and instantly fell in love with it. Yoga taught me how to live in the present mindfully and patiently, as well as how to find health and happiness within. It made me feel more empowered, aware and grateful.…

The post HK Yoga Teacher Series: Aleksandra Milewicz, Founder Of Bamboo Yoga appeared first on Green Queen Health & Wellness Hong Kong.

          Hedge Fund Traders Return To Banking As Trump Promises To 'Make Prop Trading Great Again'   

The hedge fund industry is finding itself in increasingly dire straits as persistently weak returns and the advent of low-cost investing have forced more and more funds to shut down. So, it's unsurprising that, amid this steadily worsening backdrop, more traders are heading for the exits. But where are the heading? Increasingly, more traders are moving back from where they came - i.e. the big banks, which expect to see a boost in trading revenue as President Donald Trump has vowed to dial back postcrisis regulations that forced banks to wind down their prop desks.

In recent months, a number of high-profile hedge fund names have made the leap back to banking, according to Bloomberg.

“This month, Barclays Plc hired Chris Leonard, a founder of two hedge funds in the decade since he left JPMorgan Chase & Co., to turn around U.S. rates trading. At the end of last year, ex-bankers Roberto Hoornweg and Chris Rivelli, both of Brevan Howard Asset Management, left that London hedge fund for banks.


Recruiters say these moves and others aren’t just the usual attrition: banks in New York and London are interesting employers again a decade after the financial crisis, and may get involved in more proprietary trading if President Trump eases regulatory burdens. There’s also another factor: many macro funds just don’t make money anymore.


One recruiter says he expects defections to increase over the next nine months.


“In the last quarter of the year or first quarter of 2018, you will find more people leaving the hedge funds to join banks to run proprietary money,” said Jason Kennedy, chief executive officer of the Kennedy Group in London, which hires for banks and hedge funds. “The banks will become more attractive in terms of jobs and pay.”

The Trump administration has struggled to pass elements of its agenda - most notable its plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. And it only recently scored a partial victory on its immigration ban. Yet financial deregulation is one area where the Trump agenda is moving inexorably forward. On June 13, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin issued a report – the first in a series that will detail how the administration plans to proceed with paring back post-crisis regulations.  Some of the more notable proposals in the highly-anticipated report include: adjusting the annual stress tests, easing trading rules (i.e., gutting the Volcker Rule), and paring back the power of the watchdogs - like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Unlike the administration’s health-care plans, these measures enjoy broad support among Republicans.

Meanwhile, hedge funds are finding it increasingly difficult to compete for top talent.

"...the bar within the hedge-fund world has increased dramatically over the last year,” Kennedy said.


Hedge funds, stung by years of underperformance and revolts from investors, are increasingly under pressure to dump their traditional 2 percent management and 20 percent performance-fee model, curtailing their ability to hire and retain talent. Louis Bacon’s Moore Capital Management, Tudor Investment Corp., Och-Ziff Capital Management Group LLC, Canyon Capital Advisors and Brevan Howard were among money managers who cut fees last year. More hedge funds shuttered last year than started, a trend that continued in the first quarter of 2017, according to data from Hedge Fund Research Inc.


“It is not surprising that traders are looking for a safe haven, and if banks have more room to operate these moves could make sense,” said John Purcell of Purcell & Co., a London-based executive recruitment firm."

The unprecedented easy money policies adopted by the world's largest central banks in the aftermath of the crisis have hurt macro funds' profits by suppressing two-way volatility.

“Tim Sharp made the move back to the sell side even earlier, and says banks now have attractive niche trading businesses and many are nearly done downsizing. He joined Credit Suisse Group AG in July 2015 after less than a year running money at BlueCrest Capital Management LLP, the firm led by Michael Platt. At the end of that year, Platt’s firm, once among Europe’s largest hedge funds, announced it would return about $7 billion of the $8 billion it managed.


“It’s very difficult for macro funds," Sharp said in an interview. “Central bank policies have crushed volatility and reduced opportunities, and also it’s survival of the fittest.”


Sharp, who is now a director at Credit Suisse, left BlueCrest a few months after the Swiss central bank’s shock decision to remove its currency cap, which caused losses at several firms.


"Macro as an overall strategy has recently experienced a prolonged phase of lackluster returns, triggering a number of unwinds at big shops," said Nicolas Roth, co-head of alternative assets at Geneva-based Reyl & Cie.”

As Bloomberg explains, the flow of traders back into banking is a reversal of a trend that began in 2008, when banks, reelingfrom the crisis, saw an exodus of traders move to the buy side as many hoped to cash in on the postcrisis recovery. The advent of the Volcker rule forced banks to wind down their prop trading desks, spurring even more defections. Another factor: the rising cost of regulatory compliance is making it increasingly expensive to start a hedge fund.

"Hedge funds were booming. In 2009, hedge funds gained almost 20 percent, their best yearly performance since 1999, according to the HFRI Fund Weighted Composite Index; a year later, they returned 10.3 percent.


While macro strategies raised $13.8 billion in the first five months of this year, the most of any trading strategy tracked by eVestment, investors are disappointed by their returns. Traders wagering on currencies and rates continue to struggle, even as peers are showing signs of recovering from their multi-year funk.


Andrew Law’s Caxton Associates lost 8 percent this year through May and told clients that it’s slashing performance and management fees. Paul Brewer’s hedge fund Rubicon Global Fund plunged about 27 percent this year, hurt by wrong-way currency wagers, people said earlier this month.


It’s also more expensive to start a hedge fund than it was, because of the difficult capital raising environment and rising cost of regulatory compliance.


“Some macro traders are returning to the sell side, maybe in a hope that a Dodd-Frank rollback will re-open proprietary trading activity,” Roth said."

Here’s a breakdown of other personnel moves, courtesy of Bloomberg.

  • Anthony Kemp returned to Morgan Stanley at the beginning of May from Stone Milliner Asset Management, which he joined in summer 2015
  • Alex Silverman left Citadel to join Morgan Stanley in New York at the end of March 2017
  • Dipak Shah joined Citigroup Inc. as director in October 2016 from Capula Investment Services after previously working at Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

          Grant Williams: Get Out of Equities Before Boomers Are Forced To Sell Them   

Authored by Stephen McBride via,

Last year, the first baby boomers turned 70 and that spells trouble for investors.

Speaking at the Mauldin Economics Strategic Investment Conference, Grant Williams, Co-Founder of RealVision TV, warned investors about the wave of forced selling by millions of retirees and the impact it will have on their portfolios.

Equities Make Up 70% of Boomers’ Portfolios

“Boomers are the largest generation in history to retire, and they’re doing so right now.”

In fact, according to Pew Research, 1.5 million Americans turned 70 last year and will do so every year for the next 15 years.

“When Boomers are retiring in their millions, they have 70% of their portfolios in equities… at a point in time when we are due a recession,” pointed out Grant Williams.


“And in recession, bad things happen… the average stock market drawdown in recession since 1980 is 37%.”

Just $136,000 Saved for Retirement

While boomers have their biggest allocation to equities they’ve ever had, Williams says the numbers don’t look good for them: “The reality is they don’t have enough money to retire.”

“According to BlackRock, the average Boomer has only $136,000 saved for retirement. Even with return assumptions fixed at 7%, when they’re more like 2%, you are talking an income of $9,000 a year… that’s $36,000 shy of the ideal retirement income,” adds Williams.

As such, boomers will be forced to look for income elsewhere. In the not-so-distant past, that has come from bonds.

As the below chart shows, once you hit the age of 65, you go through the most profound asset class shift since your 30s. You trim your equity positions and raise your bond exposure to lower the risk.

Source: Haver Analytics, Gluskin Sheff

However, with today’s yields, bonds won’t provide the needed income.

Even if boomers decide to stick to equities for higher yields, there’s another reason they will be forced to divest their equity holdings—one they have little choice in.

Forced to Sell 5% of Their Portfolios Every Year

Due to IRS mandatory minimum drawdown laws for retirement plans like IRAs and 401(k)s, when you turn 70 ½, you are forced to withdraw at least 5% of the value of the plan each year.

Williams thinks it will have profound implications: “Boomers started turning 70 ½ in April, this is a real problem and people don’t understand the ramifications of it.”

This forced selling will flood the market with billions worth of equities, which will push down prices.

Given that 15 million retirees will be forced to divest their equity holdings over the next decade, Grant has some thoughts on what investors like you and me should be doing today:

“Get out of equities. You might think you’re a wealthy guy… but if you have 70% of your portfolio in equities and you take a 40% haircut, you’re not a wealthy guy anymore.”

What Does This Mean for the US Economy?

For Grant’s thoughts on what the retirement crisis means for the US economy, big demographic trends, and more—watch the full interview below.

          "We're All A 'Walking Illinois' Now"   

Authored by James Howard Kunstler via,

Who needs Russia when the Tweety-Bird-in-Chief is hacking his own presidency into a global joke? Or at least it might be a joke if the USA weren’t such a menace to international order, and to itself, by the way. Interestingly, the 25th amendment allows for the removal of a president from office on account of incompetence or disability, but not for being an embarrassment to the nation.

They may come after him anyway with the 25th, especially as the financial system unravels later this year, because this time, unlike 2008-9, central bank interventions will not avail to rescue the faltering money system from nine years of previous central bank interventions. All it takes is for the “liquidity” flows to seize up and before you know it, there’s no food in the supermarkets because everything in our just-in-time economy is exquisitely calibrated to the sure expectation of getting paid, and when that goes, it all goes.

Then the question arises: well, can’t you just re-start the liquidity flows? Not when the process requires another abracadabra magic act of summoning X-trillions of dollars out of absolutely nothing when the previous X-trillions created out of absolutely nothing are rushing at warp speed into the black hole of deleveraging because it has been discovered that the “loans” they were based on can never be paid back, not in this universe or any number of universes like it. In a word, they’re worthless.

Deleveraging is the polite term economists give to your net worth rapidly evaporating. Liquidity is the polite term for cash money and things denominated in them that can readily be converted into cash money. The problem with the kind of liquidity-creation solution to deleveraging is that it rapidly leads to money itself becoming worthless.

The preview of coming attractions is currently playing out in Illinois — soon to be joined by Connecticut, California, Kentucky, and many other bankrupt states. Illinois is dead broke. It can’t pay the contractors who fix things like roads and storm drains, and supply food to its prisons. It’s over $200-billion deep in pension obligations that will never be honored. Its Medicaid system is a shambles. It doesn’t even have the cash-on-hand to pay lottery winners (what happened to all the cash paid into the lottery by the suckers who didn’t win, which is supposed to pay off the winners?). The state legislature hasn’t passed a budget in three years.

The governor and the mayor of Chicago and everybody else nominally in charge have no idea what they’re going to do about it. Think the federal government is going to just step in and save the day there? They’d have to bail out every other foundering state and that’s just not going to happen, especially with that same federal government about to run out of cash money itself, with no resolution of the debt ceiling controversy that might allow it to even pretend to borrow more money by issuing treasury bonds that are instantly bought by the Federal Reserve — which, of course, is not an official government agency but a private banking consortium contracted to manage the nation’s money.

Do you begin to see the outlines of the clusterfuck rising like a bad moon over the harvest season of 2017? The American people, by and large, have no more idea how false and fragile the financial arrangements of the nation are than the average eight-year-old has about why the re-po squad is towing away Daddy’s Ford-F150. We’re just doing what we always do: gittin’ our summer on. Breaking out the potato salad and the Bud Lites — at least those who have enough mojo left in their MasterCards to charge the party supplies.

An awful lot of Americans must be maxed out, though, people who actually used to work at things and get paid for it. Each one of them is a walking Illinois now, facing each dawning day with a bigger load of problems, more things they can’t pay for, and moving closer to the dreadful day when everything is gone, every chattel, every knickknack, the very roof over their head, and most particularly the belief that they live in a fair and decent society.

So, I wonder what we’re going to do with a Tweety-Bird-in-Chief in the White House when this deal goes down. Stresses and tensions are out there a’buildin’ and the time for being a nation of feckless idiots is drawing to a close. The sad thing is: it wasn’t even fun while it lasted.

          After Chris Sacca's Apology to Women Founders, The Internet Responds With Culture Tips That Can Help Any Company   
Look, listen, act.
          What's the Worst Thing That Ever Happened to You (and How Did You Learn From It)?   
One co-founder and CEO explains how he rebounded from rock bottom.
          Ruangguru co-founder speaks at UN high-level forum on education, stressing on accountability and use of machine learning   

Ruangguru co-founder and Chief Product Officer Iman Usman is one of the six education activists to speak at the High-Level SDG Action Event on Education Indonesian edutech startup Ruangguru announced that its co-founder and Chief Product Officer Iman Usman has spoken at the High-Level SDG Action Event on Education, held by the Office of the […]

The post Ruangguru co-founder speaks at UN high-level forum on education, stressing on accountability and use of machine learning appeared first on e27.

          e27 AMA with David Sanderson, the Founder and CEO of Nugit   

David will be online at 2pm, but drop your questions in at your convenience so he can answer them! Nugit has become quite the success story in the Singapore startup scene. The company raised US$5.2M to help turn data into stories for people. Today Nugit will be online at 2pm to answer all of you […]

The post e27 AMA with David Sanderson, the Founder and CEO of Nugit appeared first on e27.

          On This Day in Math - July 1   

Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty
a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture, 
without appeal to any part of our weaker nature,
without the gorgeous trappings of painting or music, 
yet sublimely pure, and capable of a stern perfection such as only the greatest art can show. 
 The true spirit of delight, the exaltation, 
the sense of being more than Man, 
which is the touchstone of the highest excellence, 
is to be found in mathematics as surely as in poetry.

The 182nd day of the year; there are 182 connected bipartite graphs with 8 vertices. *What's So Special About This Number

The 182nd prime (1091) is the smaller of a pair of twin primes (the 40th pair, actually) *Math Year-Round ‏@MathYearRound(Students might convince themselves that it was not necessary to say it was the smaller of the pair.)

Language time:
182 is called a pronic, promic, or heteromecic and even an oblong number. Pronic Numbers are numbers that are the product of two consecutive integers; 2, 6, 12, 20, ..(doubles of triangular numbers).  Pronic seems to be a misspelling of promic, from the Greek promekes, for rectangular, oblate or oblong. Neither pronic nor promic seems to appear in most modern dictionaries. Richard Guy pointed out to the Hyacinthos newsgroup that pronic had been used by Euler in series one, volume fifteen of his Opera, so the mathematical use of the "n" form has a long history.

Oblong is from the Latin ob (excessive) + longus (long). The word oblong is also commonly used as an alternate name for a rectangle. In his translation of Euclid's "Elements", Sir Thomas Heath translates the Greek word eteromhkes[hetero mekes - literally "different lengths"] in Book one, Definition 22 as oblong. . "Of Quadrilateral figures, a square is that which is both equilateral and right-angled; an oblong that which is right angled but not equilateral...". (note that with this definition, a square is not a subset of rectangles.)


1349 Sometimes, a little astronomical knowledge can be a dangerous thing, even to those who possess it. A tale from medieval England is passed down from the chronicles of the scholar Thomas Bradwardine of a witch who attempted to force her will on the people through knowledge of an impending eclipse. Bradwardine, who had studied astronomical predictions of Arabian astronomers, saw through the ruse, and matched the prediction of the July 01, 1349 A.D. lunar eclipse with a more precise one of his own. No word survives as to the fate of the accused, but one can only suspect banishment or worse.*

1694 Opening of the University of Halle in Germany. Georg Cantor later taught there. *VFR

1770 – Lexell's Comet passed closer to the Earth than any other comet in recorded history, approaching to a distance of 0.0146 a.u. *OnThisDay & Facts ‏@NotableHistory discovered by astronomer Charles Messier

1798 Napoleon’s fleet reached Alexandria, bearing Monge and Fourier.*VFR

1819 William George Horner’s (1786–1837) method of solving equations is presented to the Royal Society.*VFR In numerical analysis, the Horner scheme (also known as Horner algorithm), named after William George Horner, is an algorithm for the efficient evaluation of polynomials in monomial form. Horner's method describes a manual process by which one may approximate the roots of a polynomial equation. The Horner scheme can also be viewed as a fast algorithm for dividing a polynomial by a linear polynomial with Ruffini's rule. Student's often learn this process as synthetic division.  *Wik

1847 The United States issued its first two postage stamps. They pictured Benjamin Franklin and George Washington respectively [Scott #1-2]. *VFR

1852 Dirichlet delivers a memorial lecture at the Berlin Academy in honor of his close friend Jacobi, calling him the greatest member of the Academy since Lagrange. *VFR

1856 Weierstrass appointed Professor of Mathematics at the Royal Polytechnic School in Berlin. *VFR

In 1858, the Wallace-Darwin theory of evolution was first published at the Linnaean Society in London*. The previous month Charles Darwin received a letter from Alfred Wallace, who was collecting specimens in the East Indies. Wallace had independently developed a theory of natural selection - which was almost identical to Darwin's. The letter asked Darwin to evaluate the theory, and if worthy of publication, to forward the manuscript to Charles Lyell. Darwin did so, almost giving up his clear priority for he had not yet published his masterwork The Origin of Species. Neither Darwin nor Wallace were present for the oral presentation at the Linnaean Society, where geologist Charles Lyell and botanist Joseph Hooker presented both Wallace's paper and excerpts from Darwin's unpublished 1844 essay.*TIS
In his annual report the following May, society president Thomas Bell wrote, “The year which has passed has not, indeed, been marked by any of those striking discoveries which at once revolutionize, so to speak, the department of science on which they bear.” *Futility Closet

1873 From a letter dated July 1, 1873, in the Coast Survey files in the National Archives in Washington. Peirce writes, "Newcomb, in a paper .... says he finds that pendulums hung by springs twist and untwist as they oscillate and says this will affect the time of oscillation."The Charles S. Peirce-Simon Newcomb Correspondence by Carolyn Eisele.

1894 The New York Mathematical Society changed its name to the American Mathematical Society to reflect its national charter. [AMS Semicentennial Publications, vol. 1, p. 74]. *VFR

1908 International agreement to use SOS for distress signal signed. An International Radiotelegraphic Convention, ... met in Berlin in 1906. This body signed an international agreement on November 3, 1906, with an effective date of July 1, 1908. An extensive collection of Service Regulations was included to supplement the Convention, and in particular Article XVI adopted Germany's Notzeichen distress signal as the international standard, stating: "Ships in distress shall use the following signal: · · · — — — · · · repeated at brief intervals". *Citizens Compendium

1918 Florian Cajori (1859–1930) appointed professor of the history of mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, one of the few such chairs in the the world. During the next twelve years he published 159 papers on the history of mathematics. *VFR

1948 The Bell System Technical Journal publishes the first part of Claude Shannon's "A Mathematical Theory of Communication", regarded as a foundation of information theory, introducing the concept of Shannon entropy and adopting the term Bit. *Wik

1964 The New York Times, in a full page ad, announced that Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward would play a game on an elliptical pool table. It had a pocket at one focus so that if the ball passed over the other focus it would bank off the rail into the pocket. [UMAP Journal, 4(1983), p. 176; Recreational Mathematics Magazine, no. 14, January-February 1964] *VFR

1980 A method of trisecting any given acute angle Origami is demonstrated. Hisashi Abe invented this idea and published in July, 1980 edition of the Japanese journal "Suugaku Seminar"(Mathematics Seminar). For this method, and more ways to trisect the angle, see this post.
*Takaya Iwamoto

2001 The last occurrence that there were 3 eclipses in one month, and of which two solar eclipses. For July 2000 being on 1st a partial solar eclipse, 16th a total lunar eclipse, and 31st a partial solar eclipse. The next occurrence with a month with 3 eclipses will be December 2206 with a partial solar eclipse on 1st and 30th and a total lunar eclipse on 16th. Ref. Fred Espenak 06/00 SEML. *NSEC

2010 Grigori Yakovlevich Perelman turned down the Clay Millineum prize of one million dollars, saying that he considers his contribution to proving the Poincaré conjecture to be no greater than that of Richard Hamilton, who introduced the theory of Ricci flow with the aim of attacking the geometrization conjecture. On March 18 It had been announced that he had met the criteria to receive the first Clay Millennium Prize for resolution of the Poincaré conjecture. *Wik

2015 Michael Elmhirst Cates, becomes the 19th Lucasian Professor of Mathematic at the University of Cambridge. Professor Cates is a physicist and Professor of Natural Philosophy and Royal Society Research Professor at the University of Edinburgh. Previous recognitions for Prof. Cates include Maxwell Medal and Prize (1991), the Paul Dirac Medal and Prize (2009), and the Weissenberg Award (2013). He will assume the chair from another Physicist, Michael Green. He follows a line that began with Isaac Barrow and Isaac Newton and includes Charles Babbage, Paul Dirac, and Stephen Hawking


1646 Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (July 1, 1646 – November 14, 1716) born in Leipzig, Germany. Leibniz occupies a prominent place in the history of mathematics and the history of philosophy. He developed the infinitesimal calculus independently of Isaac Newton, and Leibniz's mathematical notation has been widely used ever since it was published. He became one of the most prolific inventors in the field of mechanical calculators. While working on adding automatic multiplication and division to Pascal's calculator, he was the first to describe a pinwheel calculator in 1685[4] and invented the Leibniz wheel, used in the arithmometer, the first mass-produced mechanical calculator. He also refined the binary number system, which is at the foundation of virtually all digital computers. In philosophy, Leibniz is mostly noted for his optimism, e.g. his conclusion that our Universe is, in a restricted sense, the best possible one that God could have created. Leibniz, along with René Descartes and Baruch Spinoza, was one of the three great 17th century advocates of rationalism. The work of Leibniz anticipated modern logic and analytic philosophy, but his philosophy also looks back to the scholastic tradition, in which conclusions are produced by applying reason to first principles or a priori definitions rather than to empirical evidence. Leibniz made major contributions to physics and technology, and anticipated notions that surfaced much later in biology, medicine, geology, probability theory, psychology, linguistics, and information science. He wrote works on politics, law, ethics, theology, history, philosophy, and philology. Leibniz's contributions to this vast array of subjects were scattered in various learned journals, in tens of thousands of letters, and in unpublished manuscripts. As of 2010, there is no complete gathering of the writings of Leibniz.*Wik

1779 John Farrar (July 1, 1779 – May 8, 1853) born at Lincoln, Massachusetts. As Hollis professor of mathematics and natural philosophy at Harvard, he was responsible for a sweeping modernization of the science and mathematics curriculum, including the change from Newton’s to Leibniz’s notation for the calculus. *VFR

1788 Jean Victor Poncelet (July 1, 1788 – December 22, 1867) born in Metz, France. He taught engineering and mechanics, but had a hobby of much greater interest—projective geometry. *VFR French mathematician and engineer whose study of the pole and polar lines associated with conic led to the principle of duality. While serving as an engineer in Napoleon's 1812 Russian campaign as an engineer, he was left for dead at Krasnoy, but then captured. During his imprisonment he studied projective geometry and wrote a treatise on analytic geometry. Released in 1814, he returned to France, and in 1822 published Traité des propriétés projectives des figures in which he presented his fundamental ideas of projective geometry such as the cross-ratio, perspective, involution and the circular points at infinity. As a professor of mechanics (1825-35), he applied mechanics to improve waterwheels and was able to double their efficiency.*TIS

1848 Emil Weyr (1 July 1848 in Prague, Bohemia (now Czech Republic) - 25 Jan 1894 in Vienna, Austria) His father Frantisek Weyr, was a professor of mathematics at a realschule (secondary school) in Prague from 1855. Emil was four years older than his brother Eduard Weyr who also became a famous mathematician. Emil attended the realschule in Prague where his father taught, then studied at the Prague Polytechnic from 1865 to 1868 where he was taught geometry by Vilém Fiedler.
He studied in Italy with Cremona and Casorati during the academic year 1870-71 returning to Prague where he continued to teach. In 1872 he was elected to be Head of the Union of Czech Mathematicians and Physicists. In 1875 he was appointed as professor of mathematics at the University of Vienna. He, together with his brother Eduard Weyr, were the main members of the Austrian geometric school. They were interested in descriptive geometry, then in projective geometry and their interests turned towards algebraic and synthetic methods in geometry. Among many works Emil Weyr published were Die Elemente der projectivischen Geometrie and Über die Geometrie der alten Aegypter.
Emil Weyr led the geometry school in Vienna throughout the 1880's up until his death. Together with Gustav von Escherich, Emil Weyr founded the important mathematical journal Monatshefte fuer Mathematik und Physik in 1890. The first volumes of the journal contain papers written by his brother Eduard. In 1891 Emil Weyr became one of the first 19 founder members of the Royal Czech Academy of Sciences. *SAU

1906 Jean Dieudonn´e (1 July 1906 – 29 November 1992) born. *VFR French mathematician and educator known for his writings on abstract algebra, functional analysis, topology, and his theory of Lie groups. Dieudonné was one of the two main contributors to the Bourbaki series of texts. He began his mathematical career working on the analysis of polynomials. He worked in a wide variety of mathematical areas including general topology, topological vector spaces, algebraic geometry, invariant theory and the classical groups. *TIS


1957 Donald McIntosh (Banffshire, 13 January 1868 – Invernesshire, 1 July 1957) graduated from the University of Aberdeen and taught at George Watson's Ladies College in Edinburgh. He was appointed a Director of Education. He became Secretary of the EMS in 1899 and President in 1905. *SAU

1963 Bevan Braithwaite Baker (1890 in Edinburgh, Scotland - 1 July 1963 in Edinburgh, Scotland) graduated from University College London. After service in World War I he became a lecturer at Edinburgh University and was Secretary of the EMS from 1921 to 1923. He left to become Professor at Royal Holloway College London. *SAU

1971 Sir William Lawrence Bragg (31 Mar 1890; 1 Jul 1971 at age 81) was an Australian-English physicist and X-ray crystallographer who at the early age of 25, shared the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1915 (with his father, Sir William Bragg). Lawrence Bragg formulated the Bragg law of X-ray diffraction, which is basic for the determination of crystal structure: nλ = 2dsinθ which relates the wavelength of x-rays, λ, the angle of incidence on a crystal, θ, and the spacing of crystal planes, d, for x-ray diffraction, where n is an integer (1, 2, 3, etc.). Together, the Braggs worked out the crystal structures of a number of substances. Early in this work, they showed that sodium chloride does not have individual molecules in the solid, but is an array of sodium and chloride ions. *TIS

1983 Richard Buckminster Fuller (July 12, 1895 – July 1, 1983) was a U.S. engineer and architect who developed the geodesic dome, the only large dome that can be set directly on the ground as a complete structure, and the only practical kind of building that has no limiting dimensions (i.e., beyond which the structural strength must be insufficient). Fuller also invented a wide range of other paradigm-shifting machines and structural systems. He was especially interested in high-strength-to-weight designs, with a maximum of utility for minimum of material. His designs and engineering philosophy are part of the foundation of contemporary high-tech design aesthetics. He held over 2000 patents.*TIS
This is another one who died within two weeks of his date of birth. I must organize data on this...

Credits :
*CHM=Computer History Museum
*FFF=Kane, Famous First Facts
*NSEC= NASA Solar Eclipse Calendar
*RMAT= The Renaissance Mathematicus, Thony Christie
*SAU=St Andrews Univ. Math History
*TIA = Today in Astronomy
*TIS= Today in Science History
*VFR = V Frederick Rickey, USMA
*Wik = Wikipedia
*WM = Women of Mathematics, Grinstein & Campbell
          Software Engineer - (Cambridge)   
About the role and the team This is an exciting opportunity to join a fast growing team in the heart of Kendall Square We provide multiplex assays to medical researchers around the world Software to design experiments analyze instrument data and present the results is an essential component of the product We are in the process of expanding the set of software tools that will be available to our customers This opportunity is for a software engineer to develop and support web based applications The candidate will work as part of a small team of software developers to deliver and support applications for in house scientists and business development team members as well as users at customer sites Our end users are typically wet lab biologists a key design goal is simplifying the user experience delivering sophisticated and high quality data analysis without need for scripting or programming on their part Applications include textual analysis of biological literature online database mining for assay interpretation and statistically based experiment design tools The tool http www fireflybio com portal search provides a flavor of our work About you You should have a demonstrated ability to work and think independently and creatively Our development projects are not delivered with detailed specifications but as user requests to be solved by whatever means most appropriate So you will be expected to understand and explore the design space of alternative solutions You should be able to recognize requests in the larger context of platform development and deliver special requests as part of a new general capability You will have a passion for writing elegant compact maintainable code If this sounds like you please read on and apply Minimum Qualifications Bachelora s Degree in Computer Science or an engineering scientific discipline years of extensive programming experience yearsa experience with designing building extending and maintaining mid scale software systems Preferred Qualifications Familiarity with object oriented development in Java data structures collections design patterns garbage collection multithreading Web application experience with at least one modern MVW Toolkit eg Django Rails NodeJS Spring in a modern programming language eg Java Python Ruby Scala JS A track record of finishing projects meeting deadlines and getting things done Proven ability to work independently and multitask Friendly positive self motivated and a team player Effective written and verbal communication skills Background in health care bioinformatics genetics genomics molecular biology Experience with regression testing developer documentation end user documentation and version control is expected Fundamental understanding of applied math and or statistics Proficiency in Scala or prior exposure to functional programming via a language such as Lisp or Scheme About Us Ever since when our founder Jonathan Milner started selling antibodies from the back of his bike Abcam has aimed to help scientific researchers make breakthroughs faster We now have offices and labs in the UK the US China and Japan and as we continue to grow we remain ambitious driven by our customersa success and their research needs Ita s our goal to provide a world standard in protein research tools technical support and delivery When you join Abcam youa ll join a global business with the passion and the vision to become the most influential company and best loved brand in life sciences Our culture is our key differentiator We believe in empowering individuals with responsibility given at an early stage The working environment is fun and fast paced collaborative and outcome focused with a strong customer focus In addition to competitive salaries we can offer an attractive flexible benefits package which includes share options a culture focused on wellbeing and opportunities for growth and development Abcam is an Equal Opportunity Employer and makes all employment decisions without regard to age national origin race ethnicity religion creed gender sexual orientation disability veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law Source:

Feel Good About the Markets? Maybe You Shouldn’t Read This


Traders outside the New York Stock Exchange. Investors have seemed oblivious to claims of Russian interference in the election, the firing of the F.B.I. director and other political turmoil. Credit Todd Heisler/The New York Times        

Throughout the turbulence of his first months in office, President Trump has been able to point to one bastion of support: the stock market. Earlier this month he tweeted the “great economic news” he thinks the mainstream media has been ignoring: The Dow Jones industrial average was up 16 percent and the Nasdaq up 19.5 percent since his election. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross maintained that the Trump administration had bestowed $4 trillion in gains on investors.
Investors have seemingly been oblivious to claims of Russian interference in the election, the firing of a director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the appointment of a special prosecutor. As the second quarter ends this week, 2017 has so far been a banner year, with major indexes hitting records.
But as the bull market rolls on, some see storm clouds on the horizon. “Valuations are high and it’s one of the longest and largest bull markets in history,” said James Stack, president of InvesTech Research. “Bull markets don’t last forever. So the question is, when will the music stop?”
Investors “are on a knife’s edge,” said Michael J. Kelly, global head of asset allocation for PineBridge Investments. With many still scarred by the financial crisis, “they see a potential disaster around every corner.”

This month the so-called Faang stocks — Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, which have led the market’s rally — faced a sudden downdraft, which many market watchers called a warning of turbulent times to come.
On June 14, the Federal Reserve raised short-term interest rates for the second time this year, a move that was widely expected and barely caused a market ripple. But more ominously for stock investors, the Fed also said it would reduce its $4.2 trillion balance sheet and taper its purchases of longer-term government bonds (though it didn’t say how fast), bringing to an end the quantitative easing it undertook after the financial crisis.
And then there’s Mr. Trump himself, whose unpredictability and erratic behavior still have the potential to rattle markets.
So I asked some prominent investors and market analysts whether they were pulling back from stocks, and how they viewed these latest developments.
A Crack in the Faang Stocks
After some of the Faang stocks plunged over 3 percent on June 9, Goldman Sachs compared them to the leading stocks of the tech bubble. But by the end of the month they’d recovered and were again approaching all-time highs.
There’s no question that these market darlings, which together have accounted for a disproportionate percentage of the market’s gains, are expensive, and getting more so. Price-to-earnings ratios range from 39 (Facebook) to 187 (Amazon). Their market caps are so huge they dominate the indexes.
They show up not only in so-called growth funds, but also in value and low-volatility funds. Should they embark on a sustained plunge, a bear market could quickly follow.
The tremor in June was “a warning shot across the bow,” said Bill Smead, the founder of Smead Capital Management in Seattle. The Faang stocks “are showing all the classic signs of being overcooked,” he added. “What magazine hasn’t had Jeff Bezos or Mark Zuckerberg on the cover?
There’s no question this can end very badly. But the market can stay irrational for a very long time.
My sense is that there’s one big blowout rally left in these stocks.”

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange this month as Janet Yellen announced the Fed’s decision to raise interest rates. Credit Drew Angerer/Getty Images       
Mr. Stack noted that the Faang stocks had brief sell-offs last June and October, only to rebound. Still, he said, “the Faang stocks will be among the hardest hit in the next bear market due to the amount of money that flowed into them and the high expectations that have driven them higher.”
But like Mr. Smead, he doesn’t expect that to be imminent. “We’re not buying them, but we’re not necessarily saying sell,” Mr. Stack said. He urged investors to rebalance portfolios that have become too heavily weighted in these stocks.
A Tightening Federal Reserve
Everyone I interviewed agreed that the Fed is the most likely catalyst for the next bear market, but that may still be years away.

“Historically it’s difficult to find a bear market that wasn’t triggered to some extent by the Fed,” Mr. Smead said. “But I don’t think unwinding the long bond position as gradually as they’re going to will have a significant impact. What would have an impact is if the Fed is forced to raise rates faster than everyone anticipates. The Fed has prepared investors for one more rate hike this year. That’s where the potential surprise could come. If we see two or three by year’s end, we’re going to see definite headwinds and maybe a market top of some significance.”
Mr. Kelly said the Fed had plenty of room to maneuver before stocks start to be affected. “We just had a once-in-70-year crisis that left very long scars. Businesses basically didn’t invest for eight years. In tightening, the Fed is acknowledging that a monetary policy built on a very fragile economic backdrop is no longer appropriate. But we’re just getting to the point now where people are crawling out of their shells and we’re seeing more normal economic activity.”
Mr. Kelly said bull markets typically last another three to four years after such a point in the economic cycle, and can even go another eight or nine. “Bull markets die from excess, not old age,” he said.
Mr. Smead agreed. “There’s no question we’re getting closer to normal rates,” he said. “That will be difficult for the stock market when it happens. People will be less willing to be adventurous. But that’s still years away.”
Over at InvesTech Research, “we’re still quite bullish,” Mr. Stack said. “We’re not increasing cash reserves. We are rebalancing towards more defensive and out-of-favor sectors, like consumer staples and health care.”
‘I Wouldn’t Call It a Trump Rally’
“The risks don’t lie with potential charges of obstruction of justice or even impeachment,” Mr. Stack said. “For political mayhem to upset the economic apple cart, it has to irreparably damage confidence at the consumer and business level. So far we don’t see that happening. Consumer confidence and consumer sentiment measures are at 16-year highs, and C.E.O. confidence in April was the highest since 2004.”
Nor have investors given up hope that a Republican Congress will still deliver business-friendly corporate tax reform and a pro-growth overhaul of the tax code, despite the president’s troubles.
At the same time, “Trump shouldn’t be looking to the market for vindication,” Mr. Smead said. “I wouldn’t call it a Trump rally. He’s basically riding on the Obama years. “
His bottom line: “We don’t pay much attention to politics, and that’s been a good thing.”


On Leadership, Virtue and Vice

By George Friedman


Last week there was a fire in a high-rise building in London that killed dozens. British Prime Minister Theresa May was slow to issue a statement, and it was another day before she visited the scene – and then only to meet with members of the emergency services. It was not until day three that she paid a visit to the survivors. Her explanation was that she was busy overseeing the management of the disaster and therefore couldn’t go sooner. She was met by a storm of criticism.

Two questions arise from this affair. First, why would anyone think an empty gesture like visiting the site of a fire – no matter how many died – to be important? Perhaps the prime minister ought to be doing something productive? Second, why did May answer that she was busy overseeing the crisis? Exactly what was it about the disaster that she could oversee? She faced what seemed to be unreasonable condemnation and replied with a preposterous justification.

But it is the first question that I want to discuss because it raises another, more important question: that of leadership.
More Than Policy
The simple answer to the first question is that May ought to have visited the site of the fire because that’s what prime ministers do. They engage in gestures, and whatever they may privately feel or not feel, they show themselves to be grieving the dead. A prime minister, a president, a king or a queen represents the country at moments such as these, and their responsibility is to convey to the country the gravity of the event, the sorrow they feel, and that the state – personified by them – is not indifferent to the suffering of its citizens.
Members of the emergency services work inside the charred remains of the Grenfell Tower block in Kensington, west London, on June 17, 2017, follwing the June 14 fire at the residential building. TOLGA AKMEN/AFP/Getty Images
Even if the grief is posed, there is value in it. The philosopher La Rochefoucauld wrote that hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue. Many of us are incapable of feeling the emotion we ought to feel. The reason is that, in some way, we are corrupt. But in pretending to feel it, we are validating virtue.

A leader must represent the best of us. May is not the head bureaucrat; she is a political leader, and the exercise of leadership is meant to display the virtues the nation ought to have. This is so important that the U.K. has two such leaders – the prime minister and the queen – both of whom are required to show what is appropriate and what the state feels, even if they don’t themselves feel it. A political leader must first lead, and in leading, gain the authority to make policy. A leader who wants to make policy and is indifferent to the task of leadership will fail. Policy is easy; leadership is hard.

The statue of Abraham Lincoln in Washington superbly grasps who we wanted Lincoln to be: a brooding, grieving figure who felt every death, on both sides, during the Civil War. Whether he actually felt that I don’t know. But he convinced the nation that he did. Otherwise, his statue would not have been built or honored. Lincoln understood that the country had to be healed, or the union, saved in battle, would be lost in peace. To heal it, he had to project to the country that the war was not only a tragedy but also a necessity. He also knew that there had to be a reconciliation. And for this reconciliation, the Confederacy could not be absolved, but those who fought for it had to be. Its soldiers had to be treated with honor – not for their beliefs, but because they believed deeply enough to die.

This is the purpose of leadership. A leader understands what is necessary. He also understands that governing, properly done, is a work of art. A leader paints a picture of who he is by what he says, by the gestures he makes and by framing an abiding concern for the nation. It is a concern that ought to be natural but in the greatest of politicians is crafted, sometimes in opposition to their nature. In our age, this would be the crime of inauthenticity. La Rochefoucauld would celebrate it since it is far harder to appear to be caring when you are not than it is to feel the things you ought to. But a leader who knows what is right and needed in spite of his nature does something much harder: He does what he should and not what he is inclined to do. And he does it in such a way that we can believe in his virtue, and through him, in our own.

A nation that does not feel itself as virtuous is wounded in its soul. When there is no leader who even goes to the trouble of appearing to understand what the virtue of a leader is, then the country itself loses its sense of virtue. When a leader cannot imagine leadership beyond expertise in policymaking, and sees the role of leadership as a trivial task, then we are in equal trouble.
The Art of Leadership
In focusing on the question of leadership, I am challenging one of the foundations of geopolitics. Geopolitics, as we interpret it, argues that nations are too vast to be ruled by any one person, particularly since no leader rules for very long compared to the life of a nation. For us, the course of nations can be best understood by ignoring presidents and prime ministers, and all the lesser figures, and focusing on the impersonal forces that shape millions of people and cause the nation to act in certain and predictable ways.

If this is true, then Lincoln’s leadership would be a matter of indifference. The North, having defeated the South, would inevitably have unified the nation. In fact, with Lincoln dead, the victors imposed Reconstruction, a relatively harsh regime that told the South that it had lost and would pay the price. Despite the absence of Lincoln’s sensibility after the war, the union survived. From this, it could be said that Lincoln was irrelevant.

But that assumes that geopolitics, as important as it is for my understanding of the world, would be all there is to public life; there is what will be and what can’t be, and that determines the rise and fall of nations. This is what geopolitics is about, and it matters. But nations also have an aesthetic sense of themselves. We live in a work of art crafted by the founders and leaders of the nation. It defines our sense of self, and without that sense, we rise and fall in a very squalid place. Lincoln crafted a picture of who Americans are, and it is not unfair to say it has been lost – by all factions of our polity. Nothing worth having has replaced it. America is a great power, but one with a troubled and hungry soul.

I began this with a trivial moment, in Britain, where a prime minister did not present herself at a fire and show the nation that it is proper to grieve. She answered that she had no time to go because she was busy managing things. She did not know that management is not the task of the prime minister – at least not until after she leads. And if she leads, management becomes easier. Her predecessor, Winston Churchill, knew this.

Churchills come rarely into the world, and truth be known, he was a fairly poor manager. But he gave Britain the sense that the world was filled with evil, and that that evil had to be destroyed. He also gave Britain the sense that it was not only worthy of the task, but that it should feel itself honored to be placed in the role. Britain might have been victorious without Churchill. But Churchill not only made it far easier to win, but he gave the victory a meaning of transcendent importance. He made Britain into a work of art and lifted it among the prosaic and squalid business of just surviving. He did not change history, but he imbued it with virtues that even the most wicked of people would have honored by their hypocrisy.

          Chobani Is BACK on Whole Foods Shelves Just in Time for the Amazon Acquisition   

After leaving the shelves of organic grocer Whole Foods in 2014 due to an odd dust-up, Chobani's signature Greek yogurt will return shortly, TheStreet has learned. "We are going to be back in Whole Foods in August -- this came before the deal [Amazon's deal for Whole Foods]," Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya told TheStreet in an interview.

          "This is harassment, pure and simple."   
Anita Sarkeesian's astounding 'garbage human' moment. [Polygon] "The panel's first question drops. It's about why feminism — online and in games — is an issue worthy of discussion. Sarkeesian notes Benjamin's presence and begins speaking. "If you Google my name on YouTube you get shitheads like this dude who are making these dumb-assed videos," she says. "They just say the same shit over and over again. I hate to give you attention because you're a garbage human. These dudes just making endless videos that go after every feminist over and over again is a part of the issue of why we have to have these conversations." The crowd gives her a positive response, with some whoops and cheers." • VidCon Debrief: With the benefit of a couple days, here are two things we wanted to talk about. [Medium]
"During the panel, a panelist called out one of the audience members for being someone who has made her life very difficult, and wished she didn't have to give him attention because he was a "garbage human." Look, we don't want our panelists to insult our audience members, even when we completely understand that the comment exists in a much broader (and pretty messed up) context. Even when people have said hateful things that everyone in our office disagrees with, we have a policy, and it exists not just to protect people at the show, but to protect our ability to have these conversations."
Our founder, Hank Green, talked with our panelist and said two things: 1. He told her that her comment had violated our policy, but that he understood that there was a broader context (which to be clear, we were blissfully ignorant of until this weekend, and remain inexpert in.) 2. He apologized to her for not having been more aware of and active in understanding the situation before the event, which resulted in her being subjected to a hostile environment that she had not signed up for.
• When Serial Harassers Try to Hijack Conversations About Harassment [The Mary Sue]
"Talking about harassment, or calling out misogyny or racism or homophobia in video games and the media as Sarkeesian does, is not claiming victimhood. Talking about what plagues us and what we can do better is not disparaging to ourselves, nor is it a direct attack on anyone else. Yet a whole lot of people in this conversation are calling themselves victims. Carl, like so many other men in online (and, let's be honest, offline too) communities, cannot hear talk of something aimed at "marginalized voices" without feeling like his exclusion from that narrative means he's now the real marginalized voice. He cannot hear a woman talk about abuse without feeling abused. He will go out of his way to harass and intimidate a woman and then cry persecution when she notices him. That's as manipulative as it is pathetic. Good for Anita Sarkeesian for showing up in the first place to talk about such an awful, but pervasive and therefore necessary subject. And even better still for calling this human garbage out for his awfulness."

          TV Weekend: "Detroit Performs," "Gypsy," "America In Color" and more...   

"Detroit Performs" salutes the career of retiring Michigan Opera Theatre founder David DiChiera with a special episode at 8 p.m. Friday, June 30, on WTVS-Channel 56 in Detroit (or check local listings).

Also showing:

. Naomi Watts and Billy Crudup star in "Gypsy," a new psychological drama that begins streaming Friday, June 30, on Netflix - and features a new version of the Fleetwood Mac song of the same name re-recorded by Stevie Nicks.

          Family Consumption Evolution In China: Speech By Babytree Founder And CEO Allen Wang   

          The Most Famous Jew In France?   
Marcel Proust, of course. Founder of the modern novel. There's a trail you can follow around coastal north France reading plaques. The trail goes to a hotel which has his bust in the reception area. H
           Tips on skincare during air travel    
Air travelling can cause drying of skin and make it age faster. Hence, when you are on flights, you need to take extra care of your skin. Like most things in the modern world, flying too has its effects on mature skin... the best thing to do is to load your skin with as much hydration pre-flight as possible, Divya Mehta, co-founder of Epique, says. She suggests the following tips on how to care for the skin when travelling by air on work or hoilday. Must haves in the flight The UV moisturiser and serum probably don’t make the cut
          Dr. John Gottman to speak in Salt Lake City   

As part of the National Marriage Week celebration in Salt Lake City, the Utah Commission on Marriage is sponsoring Dr. John Gottman at the Salt Palace on Friday, February 12, 2010.  This nationally acclaimed speaker is the founder of The Gottman Institute™.  The Institute “helps couples directly, and it provides state-of-the-art training to mental health […]

The post Dr. John Gottman to speak in Salt Lake City appeared first on The Anniversary Inn Reminder.

          Building global relationships with Office 365   
Learn how Yasmine El Baggari, founder of Voyaj, uses Office 365 to take travel one step further.
           BIG SHOT OF THE WEEK: Iceland founder Sir Malcolm Walker    
To the sneering chattering classes he is an anachronistic dinosaur; whose frozen food chain, is everything that's wrong with our nation's eating habits.
          Montpellier: Football club's founder, Nicollin dies on 74th birthday   
Colombian football legend Carlos Valderrama, who played for the club between 1988 and 1991, said Nicollin was like "a father".
          Google Ventures Founder Bill Maris ’97 – Monday at 7 – Wilson Hall   
Google Ventures founder and CEO, and Middlebury alum Bill Maris (’97) has had quite an unpredictable career.  Currently he invests in startups at the epicenter of science, technology, and medicine.  He oversees $2.4B in capital, and has funded more than 300 companies in the GV portfolio, including Uber, Slack and Nest. In this talk, he’ll […]

DDLValley | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links

Tommys Honour

Amazon - iMDB - NFO - Sample 1 , 2, 3 , 4 - Video Sample

In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy’s Honour – an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.

The post originally appeared on Tommys.Honour.2016.1080p.WEB-DL.XviD.AC3-FGT | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links .


DDLValley | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links

In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy’s Honour – an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.

The post originally appeared on Tommys.Honour.2016.720p.WEB-DL.XviD.AC3-FGT | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links .


DDLValley | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links

Tommys Honour

Amazon - iMDB - NFO - Sample 1 , 2, 3 , 4 - ">Video Sample

In every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy’s Honour – an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.

The post originally appeared on Tommys.Honour.2016.WEB-DL.XviD.AC3-FGT | DDLValley - Rapidgator , Uploaded , Go4up & Openload links .

          Majestic Insights Radio with Karey Keith - Success for Life's Transitions: Divine Purpose with Founder of Akashic Records Institute, Patricia Missakian   
EpisodeThe blue print of our soul resides in the Akashic Records and by accessing these records we can live with divine purpose. Aligning with our divine purpose allows enlightenment, healing and prosperity. The founder of Akashic Records Institute, Patricia Missakian, believes together we can elevate the vibrations of the planet and individually play our part in the transformation of Earth.  
          Chat with Natalie: " -- Getting to Know Yourself" Today we're talking about "WILD:The way of the woman's Wild Creative Heart" with Lisa Dieken, Natasha Reilly, Mary Rives, and Tina van Leuven.   
GuestThe wild woman archetype is definitely about the Self its about going back to our True self, the freedom of that, dropping all of the social conditioning, stepping into our power. Creative, passionate, soulful, sensual, light-hearted, playful, feeling at one with nature, unapologetic for who she is. This is wild woman.Join me today as I welcome my collaborators Lisa Dieken, the founder of Wild Creative Heart and WILD: The way of the womans Wild Creative Heart, Natasha Reilly, Mary Rives ...
          Chat with Natalie: " - Getting To Know Yourself." ORMUS - Connect and Be the Vibration with Scott Stevens   
GuestIn today's show Natalie will chat with Scott Stevens one of the founders of Blue Water Alchemy, whose working to assist humanity to shift towards oneness via the vehicle of ORMUS and many other endeavors. ORMUS is a wonderful white liquid, based on ancient traditions, created from pure Organic Sea Salts that establishes a personal conduit to the Subtle Energy realm. More than that, the science and alchemy combined have shown amazing results for many people on their spiritual paths and heali ...
          2017 Arkansas Times Academic All-Star Team   
Meet the best and brightest high school students in the state.

The class of 2017, our 23rd, is made up of athletes, coders, budding politicians and brain experts. There's rarely a B on the transcripts of these students — in not just this, their senior year, but in any year of their high school careers.

Back in 1995, we created the Academic All-Star Team to honor what we then called "the silent majority — the kids who go to school, do their homework (most of it, anyway), graduate and go on to be contributing members of society." Too often, we argued then, all Arkansans heard about young people was how poorly they were faring. Or, when students did get positive attention, it came for athletic achievement.

As you read profiles of this year's All-Stars, it should be abundantly clear that good things are happening in Arkansas schools and there are many academic achievers who deserve to be celebrated. You should get a good idea, as well, of how these stellar students are busy outside school, with extracurricular activities, volunteer work, mission activities and more.

They'll be honored this week at a ceremony at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock with plaques and $250 cash awards.

Many college plans listed here are not set in stone, as students await information on scholarships and acceptances.

Age: 17
Hometown: North Little Rock
High School: Mount St. Mary Academy
Parents: (guardian) Dennis Chudy
College plans: Duke University

Caroline Coplin-Chudy has a 4.4 grade point average — high enough to rank second in her class at Mount St. Mary Academy — and lost her mother to leukemia during her sophomore year, something she told us came to be a source of inspiration and drive during her academic development. "It was a big adjustment. After my mom passed away, it was just my stepdad. It's a weird realization coming to the idea that both of your parents are gone, and it's just you. ... I still think of her every single day. She motivates me to do well in everything, because my whole life I wanted to make her proud." Caroline is president of Mount St. Mary's Investment Club and of SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions). She's also been a regular volunteer for several years at the Little Rock Compassion Center, whose recovery branch provides meals and health resources to people suffering from addiction. Caroline said she found healing from her own grief in the friendships she forged there. As the recipient of a Questbridge scholarship, described by Caroline's guidance counselor and nominator Amy Perkins as a program where lower-income students qualify for tuition to schools with which they "match" via an early decision process, Caroline will attend Duke University on a full scholarship. "I'm going to study biology and psych, with a minor in Spanish. My plan is to work at the Duke Center for Addiction [Science and Technology] helping people with drug addictions overcome that sort of thing. It's something that I've had experience with, watching my family go through things like that."

Age: 17
Hometown: Pine Bluff
High School: Subiaco Academy
Parents: Sixte Ntamatungiro and Sylvana Niciteretse
College plans: Rice University, neuroscience

Axel Ntamatungiro grew up among books and maps dispersed throughout his home that "paint[ed] the walls with nuanced shades of knowledge." It shows. Not often can a high school senior explain, as Axel does, his love for studying the brain so easily. "Neuroscience is basically a neuron turning on and off," he said. "The fact that you have billions of these combinations that lead to consciousness, that's unbelievable." To continue learning about the mind, Axel is headed to Rice University on a full ride as a QuestBridge scholar. Maybe medical school or graduate school after that. Axel said his parents taught him a "humble intellectualism" that helped him understand "the irrationality of life." They always told him: "Work hard, but you need to realize you don't always get what you deserve." And life has been, at times, irrational and difficult for his family. Axel was the only member of his family born in the United States — in Little Rock in 1999. The rest migrated from Burundi in the early 1990s. They stayed here as the Rwandan genocide inflicted incredible damage in the area. That past was never hidden from Axel. "Instead of avoiding my questions, my parents level-headedly answered [them], telling me about Belgian colonialism, Hutu-Tutsi tension and the systematic poverty afflicting Burundi," he said. Maybe that is why Axel has never been afraid to ask big questions. He said it also helped to have a diverse group of friends who taught him new things. At his cafeteria table for lunch are kids from all over: Nigeria, Fort Smith, Japan, Bentonville and Russia. Everyone's small stories add to a global perspective, something bigger from something small, kind of like those neurons.

Age: 18
Hometown: Springdale
High School: Haas Hall Academy (Fayetteville)
Parents: Brenan and Tiffany DeSpain
College plans: U.S. Naval Academy, nuclear engineering

For Jade DeSpain, the question, "Where's your hometown?" isn't necessarily as straightforward as it seems. The National Merit semifinalist, swimming star and Quiz Bowler spent much of her childhood in Beijing, where her parents — both fluent in Mandarin — taught her Chinese concurrently with English (and where, she notes, she acquired an "incredible prowess with chopsticks.") "We've moved around so much that I don't really have a 'hometown,' but Springdale is the closest I've ever gotten," she said. She's made her impact there, too, tutoring students free of charge through her volunteer work with the M&N Augustine Foundation and putting in time at the Arkansas Council for the Blind and the Springdale Animal Shelter. Jade is ranked second in her class, and her high school transcript is full of aced courses in trigonometry, physics and calculus. She's also the co-founder of Haas Hall Academy's coding club, so a career in nuclear energy development — Jade's field of choice — isn't just an aspiration; it's the plan. "I have a deep appreciation for nature," she told us, citing Devil's Den State Park as a spot to which she feels closely connected, and stressing the importance of preserving natural spaces and developing more long-term options for sustainable energy. On Christmas Day 2016, Jade checked her email to find that she'd attained something she'd wanted as early as age 12: acceptance to the U.S. Naval Academy. There, she'll major in nuclear engineering and complete her five mandatory post-Academy years in the Navy, after which she hopes to acquire a Ph.D. in the field.

Age: 18
Hometown: Cabot
High school: Cabot High School
Parents: Dan and Melissa Elliott
College plans: University of Arkansas, medicine

Though many of our All-Stars seem destined from birth for academic greatness, there is the occasional inspiring All-Star who has had to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds. One of those is Cabot High School's Avery Elliott, who was born with nystagmus, a condition that causes involuntary eye movements that can make it hard for sufferers to concentrate and learn. Though it's hard to imagine it now, when she was in elementary school Avery found herself falling further and further behind her classmates in reading because of her condition. "That was difficult," she said. "I was behind schedule until about third or fourth grade. I would have to go home and really work with my parents to keep up with the rest of the class." Even though she struggled early on, Avery said that, in a way, the nystagmus contributed to her success and gave her a direction to follow. "I had to learn to really study even outside of school," she said. "I learned some very good study habits. But I think it also really affected where I wanted to go as far as my career. ... I really learned that a medical team can not only dispense medicine, but can really affect someone's life." A National Merit finalist who has volunteered extensively with Special Olympics and already completed 43 hours of college-level coursework, Avery has been awarded the University of Arkansas Fellowship. She plans to study medicine at UAMS after completing her undergrad degree, then practice in Arkansas. That goal has always pushed her to succeed academically. "I wanted to go into the medical field from an early age," she said, "so I knew starting out in high school that I needed to make very good grades in order to get where I needed to. I had to really learn the material, rather than just trying to ace a test."

Age: 17
Hometown: Cabot
High school: Cabot High School
Parents: Dan and LeAnne Gilliam
College plans: University of Arkansas, engineering

When most young people say they want to change the world, it's easy to believe that's just pie-in-the-sky thinking by someone who hasn't yet been through the Academy of Hard Knocks. When Jared Gilliam says he wants to change the world, however, there's a good chance he might actually pull it off. Jared even has a plan: He'll change the world through engineering. A National Merit finalist and AP scholar with a GPA of 4.18 and a perfect score of 36 on the ACT, Jared is well placed to do just that. A musician who plays percussion with the Cabot High Marching Band, Jared said his favorite subject in school is math. "I think I'm mostly interested in engineering because I've always been sort of a problem-solver," he said. "I've enjoyed math and science, working through things and finding solutions to everyday problems. This year, I've been in robotics, so we've spent time working on a robot to perform various tasks. I've enjoyed that a lot. I think engineering is where my ability would best be used." He'll attend the University of Arkansas, which has offered him the Honors College Fellowship. He said the drive to excel academically has always been a part of his life. "I've grown up being encouraged to do well, and I guess I have my parents to thank for that and all my teachers," he said. "I think knowing that I have the ability to do all of this, I feel compelled to do what I can to make a difference. I think life would be pretty boring if I didn't go out there and do all the things I do. I don't think I could settle for not being successful."

Age: 18
Hometown: Fort Smith
High School: Southside High School
Parents: Drs. Bill and Janice Keating
College plans: Undecided

If you were looking for a ringing endorsement of Ben Keating's character, you'd need to look no further than Amy Slater, the guidance counselor who nominated him for our Academic All-Stars roster and who said of Ben, "He is all the things I hope my son turns out to be. ... He really thinks about things, and he practices the trumpet and piano for hours a day. It's crazy, his dedication." Ben probably had something to prove here; he admits to some skepticism on the part of his mother when he announced he'd be pursuing a career in music. He's certainly proved his mettle; Ben is band president at Southside, was a principal trumpet for the 2017 National Youth Honor Orchestra, first chair for Southside's Wind Symphony and for the All-State Jazz Band and was ranked in the top-tier bands for All-State Band and All-State Orchestra each year from 2014-16. The accolades go on and on: Ben has received a Young Artist Award from the International Trumpet Guild, a Gold Medal from the National Piano Guild and superior ratings from the National Federation of Music Clubs competitions for over a decade. He plays for the Arkansas Symphony Youth Orchestra and as a volunteer musician for the Fort Smith Community Band. Ben is still deciding where to attend college, but wherever he goes, he hopes to continue playing with an orchestra. Eventually, he wants to teach at the university level. "Ultimately," he wrote, "I want to use my passion to unite people of all different races, backgrounds and cultures. In today's society that is politically and culturally divided, it is more important than ever to share the universal language of music."

Age: 17
Hometown: Hindsville
High School: Huntsville High School
Parents: Shannon Hahn
College plans: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, biochemical engineering

Katherine Hahn is ranked first in her class at Huntsville High School, which she attends because her hometown of Hindsville is too small to support its own school system. The population of Hindsville is "about 75 people," she told us. At Huntsville High, Katherine plays bass drum in the marching band and marimba/xylophone in the concert band and runs with the Huntsville cross-country team. Her real passion, though, is science. "I think I've always wanted to go to a college that was science-based and research-based," she told us. Her high school principal, Roxanne Enix, noted her own surprise when Katherine announced that she'd take 10 credits her senior year, instead of the recommended eight. "I thought she had lost her mind," Enix stated. Those credits, over half of which are in AP classes, are what Katherine hopes have prepared her for the rigorous workload at MIT. Aiming for a career in pharmaceutical development, Katherine plans to study biochemical engineering, something she said resonated personally with her as a result of her mother's struggle with skin cancer. "Biology helps me understand why medicine does the things it does," Katherine told us. "Whenever I first started out, I wanted to do environmental stuff," she said, but turned her attention to drug delivery systems after observing so many friends and loved ones battling cancer. "I want to help stop people from being scared of losing people," she explained. Katherine, a native of Tahlequah, Okla., who moved to Arkansas around fifth grade, has served on the Madison County Health Coalition as Youth Leader and was named Student of the Year in 2017 by the Huntsville Chamber of Commerce and Huntsville High School.

Age: 18
Hometown: Little Rock
High school: Little Rock Christian Academy
Parents: Bob and Ann Burnside
College plans: Stanford University, biology and public policy

When this reporter mentioned to friends at UAMS that she'd just spoken to an amazingly poised, optimistic and intelligent young woman with a spinal cord injury, they said in unison, "You mean Georgiana Burnside." Her reputation as a teenager who at 16 was paralyzed from the waist down in a snow skiing accident but who considers the event a "blessing" no doubt goes further than UAMS, all the way to Denver's Craig Hospital, where she spent "the most memorable two months in my life," she said, and where she returns to continue her rehabilitation. What is a spinal cord injury? She answers that it is a) a life changed in a split second, b) finding out that a bad attitude is the true disability, c) a time to show off wheelchair tricks, and d) spontaneous moments of unfortunate incontinence. In her essay for the Arkansas Times, Georgiana writes, "my physical brokenness has developed wholeness in my heart about the capacity life holds for individuals regardless of their disabilities." In a phone interview, Georgiana, once a figure skater, talked about her work with Easter Seals, fundraisers for Craig Hospital, and giving talks and testimony about her faith. Georgiana has regained the ability to walk with hiking sticks and leg braces, thanks to the strength in her quads. And, thanks to support from the High Fives Foundation in Truckee, Calif., which sponsors athletes with injuries and which has paid for some of her rehabilitation, Georgiana returned to the slopes over spring break, skiing upright with the aid of long forearm equipment. At Stanford, she'll study to be a doctor, with a goal to return to Craig Hospital as a physician who'll treat other injured youths who, though they may have, like Georgiana, at first believed their life was over, will learn they have "a unique role ... enabling the advancement of society."

Age: 17
Hometown: North Little Rock
High School: North Little Rock High School
Parents: David and Susan Harvey
College plans: Likely Mississippi State University, chemical engineering

Mitchell Harvey is a big fan of the periodic table. "The elements are amazing little things," he wrote in his Academic All-Star essay. "They make up everything, yet we hardly see them in their pure form in everyday life." Mitchell decided they needed more exposure, so he started collecting examples of the elements and taking them to school for his peers and teachers to see. He extracted helium from an abandoned tank on the side of the road. He found zinc in wheel weights, grew crystals of copper with electrolysis and made bromine, which he describes as "a blood-red liquid that fumes profusely," from a "crude" homemade distillation setup and pool chemicals. Though you can buy sodium readily, Mitchell made his by melting drain cleaner (sodium hydroxide) with a blowtorch and then passing a current through it, separating the mixture into sodium metal, oxygen and water. His parents were OK with the procedure, he says, because he wore a Tyvek suit, three pairs of gloves, safety goggles and a face shield. While on a college visit in California last summer, Mitchell toured Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles and was impressed by the large periodic table display exhibit there. So he decided to build one for North Little Rock High. He got money from the school's alumni group, the Wildcat Foundation, to pay for the supplies necessary to construct the 9-foot-by-6-foot display. He hopes to have it completed in the next two weeks and fill it with examples of elements he has collected, though he may need additional funding to pay for other elements. No. 1 in a class of 687, Mitchell scored a perfect 36 on the ACT. He's also an Eagle Scout, and led a project to plant 800 native hardwood seedlings at Toltec Mounds Archeological State Park. After college, Mitchell said, he might start his own waste remediation business. "The business model I would be going for would be taking some byproduct that's hazardous and turning it into something useful."

Age: 18
Hometown: Mabelvale
High school: Bryant High SCHOOL
Parents: Kevin and Ruby Molder
College plans: University of Arkansas

Not everybody plays the mellophone and likes to draw up better interstate exchanges, but Carson Molder does both. The University of Arkansas Honors College-bound student, No. 1 in his class, likes to create three-dimensional schemes in his head, and has been creating road designs since he was young. But as a musician who plays the French horn in his school's orchestra and the mellophone in the Legacy of Bryant marching band, and who has won a band scholarship in addition to his Honors College reward to the UA, he said that one day he may be an audio engineer. "I'm going to put things together and see what sticks," he said of his future. Meanwhile, Carson said the internet has been his Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria, taking him to new places that he otherwise could not get to. "I can count on my hands the number of times I have set foot outside Arkansas," Carson wrote in an essay for the Arkansas Times. But with the internet, "I can gaze into the redwood forests of California and the skyscrapers of New York City without leaving my desk." Without the internet, he said in a phone interview, "I would not be at the top of my class." Carson added, "It's not going to replace going out and visiting these things, but if you're a kid and don't have the money to go out, you can visit Yellowstone." Carson, who describes himself as "really ambitious," is looking forward to studying with Dr. Alan Mantooth, the director of the UA National Center for Reliable Electric Power Transmission. The UA, he said, "will provide me the tools" he'll need to succeed in graduate school, which he hopes will be Stanford University.

Age: 18
Hometown: Jonesboro
High school: Brookland High School
Parents: Kelly Webb and Jonathan Langer
College plans: University of California, Santa Barbara, chemistry

You might think that a student who is No. 1 in her class and a National Merit finalist with nary a B on her high school transcript might not consider one of her greatest achievements her selection as her high school's drum major three years in a row. But here's the thing: Schoolwork comes easy to Olivia Langer. "I never had to work hard," she told us. In fact, her style of learning is "conversation-based," she said; she enjoys "debate without argument." But music was different: "I struggled at points, and had to put in extra work to be good." Her selection as drum major was "something I know I've worked for," she said, and she has enjoyed the responsibilities that come with it. "I like to take care of people. The band calls me band mom," she added. Beside numerous academic awards, Olivia also earned a 2017 state Horatio Alger scholarship for students who have overcome great obstacles. Hers, Olivia said, was financial: She's always had a place to stay and food to eat, but she hasn't been able to afford academic programs. "Honestly, I wasn't able to visit any of the colleges I applied to," she said. So she will see the UC Santa Barbara campus for the first time when she arrives this fall. She's considering a double major in chemistry and anthropology; she's interested in the evolutionary side of anthropology, and plans to seek graduate and post-graduate degrees.

Age: 18
Hometown: Alma
High School: Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts
Parents: Eileen and Rick Parham
College plans: University of Arkansas or Hendrix College

On a visit to Hanamaki, Japan, with her school, Rebecca Parham noticed that once a month all the citizens would clean the front of their homes and shops. Folks would give each other gifts, too. "It was clear people tended to think for the whole," she said. "I thought that was really nice." An avid chemist, Rebecca did not just improve her Japanese on the trip, she brought those lessons of helping the community back to Arkansas. Her work has been at the intersection of heady science and community impact. In her robotics club, she noticed that girls were less likely to participate. "I decided that was not OK," she said. So, she designed a day with LEGO kits to encourage women to pursue STEM education. That desire to make an impact goes beyond school, too. For her senior project, Rebecca designed a test for homebuyers to see if meth had been cooked on their property (yes, meth). Her parents, on hearing of this project choice, asked her to "please explain a little bit further ... ." Here's the gist: The method of meth production in rural areas has shifted to something called the Birch reduction; older testing kits would no longer work. But Rebecca thought she could produce one that could. She designed a flame test. It finds lithium compounds left behind. The process of invention was "definitely frustrating," Rebecca said, but you "learn things you never thought of before." Rebecca did not plan to spend senior year in her dorm late at night "searching online" how to identify meth production, but she has a driving curiosity toward science and how it "connects to the world." She hopes to work in renewable energy — to be part of the global community, from Japan to Arkansas — making the world a nice place in which to live.

Age: 18
Hometown: Searcy
High school: Searcy High School
Parents: Eric and Lisa Robinson College plans: University of Arkansas

Grant Robinson's father is a cardiologist, and Grant long figured he would follow in his dad's footsteps. But now he's not so sure. Last summer, he was selected, among thousands of applicants from around the world, to participate in a Stanford University summer engineering program. He got to experience a taste of college life, to take advantage of Stanford's decked-out labs and to tour the area to see results of civil engineering. The most memorable part of the program? Grant's small group built a Rube Goldberg machine — a complicated gadget that performs a simple task in a convoluted way — that, by Grant's estimation, was "the most complex and aesthetically pleasing" in the program. It included an electromagnet the group handmade and chemical reactions triggered by the machine. Grant's academic achievements are the byproduct of a natural curiosity. He said he spends what little free time he has exploring YouTube, trying to figure out the way the world works. Another influence: His father, who pulled himself out of poverty to become a doctor, has always instilled in him the importance of hard work. The message clearly stuck. Grant is second in his class of 263, with a 4.27 GPA. He scored a 35 on the ACT. He's a Presidential Scholar. His classmates voted him most likely to receive the Nobel Prize. He also participated in Project Unify (now known as Unified Champion Schools), an effort by the Special Olympics to get young people with and without special needs to come together for activities. Grant helped plan a basketball tournament as part of the project. In the fall, he'll be rooting on the Razorbacks at the University of Arkansas.  

Age: 18
Hometown: Little Rock
High school: Little Rock Christian Academy
Parents: Jill and Steve Snyder
College plans: Cornell University, industrial and labor relations

Whatever you were doing by your senior year in high school, chances are you probably hadn't already authored a book, much less a book on the complicated intersection of taxation and politics. John Snyder has, though. His book, "The Politics of Fiscal Policy," explores the political aspects of economics, including the pros and cons of various governmental tax schemes and their effect on government spending. It's for sale on Amazon right now. "It's pretty concise," John said, "but I wanted a way to express all my ideas in economic terms. That was a great way to do that." A history buff who serves as vice president of his class, John has a stunning 4.49 GPA and is ranked first in his class of 129. Though he wanted to be a lawyer when he was younger, his plan now is to go into investment banking. "Ultimately I want to have my own hedge fund — this thing called an activist hedge fund — and eventually I want to be actively involved in politics, whether that's in the midst of my business career or after ... . I'd love to run for public office one day." At Cornell University, John will be studying industrial and labor relations, a field that marries his love of multiple subjects. "Basically it ties in business, law, economics and history all into sort of one degree," he said. "You can do limitless things [with the degree]. Some people go into law school, some go into banking, some go to politics. That's why I chose that degree." John said his philosophy is that we have only a limited amount of time on earth, and so we should try to make the most of our lives. "I think there are a lot of things I can do to change the way things currently are in society, whether it's related to business or in academia or public policy," he said. "If I don't play a role in that and I'm not striving to do my best, I would feel like I'm wasting my potential."

Age: 18
Hometown: Benton
High school: Benton High School
Parents: Haley Hicks and Brec Stone
College plans: University of Arkansas, pre-med

Benton High School's Big Man on Campus — No. 1 in his class, captain of the football team, an AP Scholar, straight As — can add to his resume the fact that he helped build his home. Preston, his two brothers and his mother bounced around a bit after her divorce, from Texas to Arkansas, living with grandparents and friends, Preston said. Then the family was selected by Habitat for Humanity, and he and his brothers pitched in to build their house. "It was the first place I could truly call home and it allowed me the stability I needed to grow into the kind of student I am today," he wrote in his essay for the Arkansas Times. Preston, who also helped build a school outreach group called SERVE to help new or struggling students, also credits sports for giving him purpose. He recently volunteered to trade in the pigskin for a basketball, joining a team that played boys at the Alexander Juvenile Detention Center. "It was an awesome experience," Preston said in a phone interview. "We were a little bit nervous at first" at the detention center, he said, but the team enjoyed the game — even though they lost to the Alexander team, formed to reward inmates with good behavior. "They practice every day," Preston said. Preston has received a $70,000 Honors College scholarship at Fayetteville. He won't be playing football with the Razorbacks. Instead he is thinking of following a pre-med track that will lead him to sports medicine. He plans to go Greek, as well.

Age: 18
Hometown: Little Rock
High school: Central High School
Parents: Amy Yu and Shawn Bao
College plans: undecided

Karina Bao embraces complexity. The Central High School valedictorian (in a class of 636) is a member of the school's back-to-back state champion Ethics Bowl Team, for which she said she spent hours "researching, discussing and sometimes even arguing" case studies. Unlike debate, she said Ethics Bowl is "really about the back-and-forth and considering different caveats and nuances and considerations" in issues ranging from local food to gender identity. As president of the school's Brain Club, she leads discussions on brain diseases, disorders and anatomy. It's a role for which she's more than qualified: She placed first in the U.S. Brain Bee, a youth neuroscience competition in which contestants answer questions about anatomy and make diagnoses based on patient actors. Placing No. 1 in the U.S. competition landed Karina a trip to Copenhagen, Denmark, to the International Brain Bee, which happened to coincide with a Federation of International Neuroscientists conference, where Karina got to talk to scientists from all over the world about their groundbreaking research. She placed fifth in the international competition. A perennial outstanding delegate winner at Model United Nations competitions, Karina said Model U.N. has helped her to "not be scared of the complexity and interconnectedness of pressing issues we face today." In her spare time, Karina volunteers on the oncology wing of Baptist Hospital. "You don't get to do much," she said. "But at least we get to talk to people and help them with whatever they need and be there to listen." In her Academic All-Stars essay, Karina echoed the same drive for understanding: "The stories other people share with me become not my own when I retell them, but a part of humanity's collective spirit to understand each other. We grow from hours of listening and crying, to empathize, to have the strength and openness to pop each successive layer of the protective bubble that keeps us from seeing the very world in which we reside."

Age: 19
Hometown: Greenwood
High school: Greenwood High School
Parents: Mike and Robin Cohea
College plans: University of Tulsa or Vanderbilt university, biology

Though he grew up landlocked, far from the deep blue sea, Greenwood High School standout Bryce Cohea knew from an early age that he wanted to be a marine biologist. To reach that goal, Bryce had to start early. "In the ninth grade," he wrote in his Academic All-Stars essay, "I began planning out all my classes for the next four years. I wanted to graduate top of my class, and in order to do that I would need to take every advanced placement class and get an A in every class." That's exactly what he did, too, making nothing less than a perfect grade in every class for his entire high school career. With a 4.25 GPA and a rank of No. 1 in his class of 275, Bryce has volunteered extensively with the Salvation Army and collected shoes for the homeless; he helps unload trucks and stock shelves at the food bank at his church. A National Merit semifinalist, he also has the distinction of having scored the first perfect ACT score of 36 in Greenwood High School history. "I've honestly been a good test-taker," he said. "The first time I took it, I got a 34. After that, I got the test back and I worked on whatever I missed. After a few more tries, I got a 36." Bryce was still deciding on which university to attend when we spoke to him, but he definitely plans to study science. The subject has always interested him, he said. "I'm planning on majoring in biology and then specializing after that," he said.

Age: 16
Hometown: Rogers
Parents: James and Hyesun Gosserand

College plans: University of Southern California, Harvey Mudd College or Columbia University, computer science or environmental science

Imani Gosserand has a journal in which she organizes the many moving parts of her life — competitive gymnastics, AP classes, computer science, Young Democrats, volunteering — into lists. Personal stuff is in there, too: bucket lists, remembrances. The journal combines the creative and the organized; it is problem-solving with an artful flare, which is how Imani operates. "I really like being able to create something of my own," she said of computer science. At a camp at Stanford University, in California, her team won the competition to program a car. Imani, not surprisingly, is good at math: She learned multiplication at age 4 and went on to skip two grades. Imani thinks schoolwork is fun. "We had a huge packet of homework problems we had to do over one of our breaks," she said. "And no one else was excited about it except for me. I was like 'Oh, I'm so excited to do all these problems!' " She brings that enthusiasm for problem-solving to bigger issues, as well. "I feel like there are so many opportunities for me because our world relies on technology, so I think I could go into any field," she said. She's excited to explore and see where she can help. "I want to meet people from around the world and hear different perspectives."

Age: 18
Hometown: Little Rock
High School: Central High School
Parents: Bobbi and Dustin McDaniel and Chris and Kim Fowler
College plans: Yale University

C.J. Fowler has long been around Democratic politics. His stepfather is former Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel. But C.J. said he decided to become more politically involved himself after he came out as gay. "The situation that I'm in is not great," he said. "People are not always accepting. But it's on me if I want to try to change that and make it better for the people who come after me. I have to make sure that my community and all marginalized communities have a seat at the table, because far too often a bunch of old gray white guys are making policies that hurt everyone else." The student body president of Central High, C.J. said he's tried to move the student council, a glorified dance committee, toward advocacy and activism for students throughout the district, whose future is being decided by those "people sitting in dark rooms." He said students too often get left out of the conversation about the district "because we're too young to have opinions. But we're not; we're living it every day." C.J. has been a fixture at Little Rock School District public comment periods. Though he can't point to any policy victories, he said at least LRSD Superintendent Mike Poore knows who he is and that he disagrees with him. C.J., who is also the executive director of Young Democrats of Arkansas, sees the backlash against President Trump as encouraging. "We're realizing that, if we're going to go all in for progressive values, we need to go all in." Rather than join the chorus of progressives in the Northeast after he finishes at Yale, C.J. says he wants to come back to Arkansas and possibly continue in politics. He admires state Sen. Joyce Elliott (D-Little Rock) and says he hopes if he ever holds office that he can follow her example.

Age: 18
Hometown: Fort Smith
High School: Southside High
Parents: Claire Price and Scott Price
College plans: Vanderbilt University, political science

"Growing up, I would always argue with everybody," Sophie Price said. Sometimes it was just to play devil's advocate, but mostly, it was because Sophie wants to find the capital-t Truth. Some of this digging for truth is class: seven AP course just this year and 12 during her time in high school. But, some of it is also talking with people, discussing issues. "The best way to improve your argument is to hear the counters, to hear the other side," Sophie said, and often she is willing to be convinced. She wants to do the right thing; she believes in justice. Which is why after college at Vanderbilt on a full scholarship, she wants to field arguments as a judge. "My whole life I've followed this ideal that you have to do what's right," Sophie said. "I want to be a judge so I can kind of decide that." Vanderbilt was the only school to which Sophie applied. She knew it was the right one for her. She arrived in Nashville on a rainy day in January, but through the gloom, she knew. "Something about the beautiful campus and the intelligent people and these varying perspectives just sold me immediately," she said. In a few months she was back at Vanderbilt for a camp where she studied law, and it cemented the deal. "There was something so exhilarating about being able to have this case and have the facts and kind of create your own narrative and really advocate for someone that drew me in," she said. Watch out, because "everything I do, I want to give it a 120 percent," Sophie said.

Age: 17
Hometown: Fayetteville
High School: Fayetteville High School
Parents: Anjanette Olsen
College plans: University of Arkansas Honors College, chemical engineering

Fayetteville High School’s top student, with a perfect ACT score of 36, a 4.2 gradepoint average and the co-author of a paper on fractal self-assembly, is not just a bookworm. She’s a leader, her counselor Cindy Alley says, who shows “grit, motivation to succeed and a desire to help others.” She is also, Alley says, “a pure joy to be around.” In her essay for the Arkansas Times, Meagan talked about how she came to understand “ternary counters,” a base-3 method of counting in which only the digits 0, 1 and 2 are used. (Binary counters of 0 and 1 make up our computer’s “thinking,” as people with 10 fingers, we use base 10 to count.) Meagan, trying to make a “self-assembling ternary counter,” said she banged her head against “endless walls” for weeks. Then just after 1 a.m., she woke up with the answer. It’s a wise child who gives credit where credit is due: “I understood,” she wrote, “my mother’s advice about taking a break whenever I was upset.” Meagan’s paper on fractal self-assembly was published in the 22nd International Conference on DNBA Computing and Molecular Programing. She no longer lets frustration prevent her from solving a problem; sometimes, she’ll just sleep on it. Meagan told the Times she plans to attend a small conference this summer and then take some needed down time. She plans to use her degree from Fayetteville to pursue biomedical research.
          The Little Rock millage question: taxation without representation?   
Frustration with the state's takeover of Little Rock schools scrambles the usual political lines on an upcoming millage election.

On May 9, residents of the Little Rock School District will vote on a ballot measure that would allow the district to make facilities improvements totaling $160 million, if approved. According to LRSD Superintendent Mike Poore, the measure is not a new tax, since it would not raise the rate of 46.4 mills now levied on property owners. Instead, by refinancing debt on an existing bond, the district would push back the expiration date of a portion (12.4 mills) of the current tax rate by 14 years, from 2033 to 2047. The LRSD says the projects to be funded by this extension of debt would include construction of a new high school in long-neglected Southwest Little Rock, major renovations to the McClellan High School campus and improvements to almost every school building in the district, from roof replacements to air conditioner upgrades to new windows. The work could begin as early as this summer, with some efforts completed in time for the 2017-18 school year.

So why are many public school advocates — including the city's most visible African-American civic leaders — urging a "no" vote on May 9?

In a word, distrust. Since January 2015, when the district was taken over by a 5-4 vote of the state Board of Education, the LRSD has been governed not by a locally elected school board, but by Arkansas's education commissioner, Johnny Key, a gubernatorial appointee. The proximate reason for the takeover was low student performance at six schools (out of the district's 48 campuses) that were deemed to be in "academic distress" based on test scores over a three-year period. But many in Little Rock saw other reasons for the state's actions: a racially motivated animus toward the majority-black local school board, which was dissolved by the January 2015 state board vote, and a desire to promote privately operated charter schools at the expense of public ones. For those critical of the takeover, the past two years have only confirmed these suspicions.

Two charter operators in Little Rock, eStem Public Charter Schools and LISA Academy, are dramatically expanding and will likely draw many students away from the LRSD in the coming years — perhaps thousands. The state board authorized their expansion plans in March 2016 over the vocal protests of the district's erstwhile superintendent, Baker Kurrus, who was fired by Commissioner Key shortly thereafter. Kurrus had served just one year on the job, having been hired by Key in 2015. Then, in the 2017 legislative session, the Republican majority created a new law that will soon allow charters to force districts to sell or lease school buildings deemed "unused or underutilized." The LRSD will close two buildings at the end of the current school year, and the ongoing migration of families toward charters raises the possibility of more closures in the future. And more charter operators are eyeing the Little Rock market: In March, a New Orleans-based operator called Einstein Charter Schools began the application process to open a campus in the city. All of this means the district is asking taxpayers to shoulder millions of dollars in additional debt to improve public buildings at a time when the future ownership of those buildings is itself in doubt.

Those who believe racial prejudice propelled the takeover find fault both with charter growth and with the district's priorities while under state control, especially the recent closure decisions. The LRSD soon will shutter two K-5 elementary schools, Franklin and Wilson, along with a pre-K facility, Woodruff Early Childhood Center. The LRSD's alternative school, Hamilton Learning Academy, will move to the Wilson building, with the old Hamilton building likely to be used by adjacent Bale Elementary. Franklin and Wilson are located in majority-minority neighborhoods and their student populations are mostly African-American and Latino. Though many of the projects outlined in the LRSD's list of capital improvements to be funded by the May 9 vote would benefit schools serving black and Latino students — the Southwest Little Rock high school most of all — many activists are deeply skeptical the district will follow through with those promises. Because the ballot measure does not specifically state which projects will receive funding, some warn the $160 million could be directed toward schools in more affluent, whiter neighborhoods rather than those with the greatest needs.

Superintendent Poore is at the heart of this controversy. The decision to close or repurpose schools was his, and he defends it as a difficult but necessary choice. (Key, who acts as the district's board while under state control, gave final approval.) For years, the LRSD received $37 million annually from the state as a result of a desegregation lawsuit — over 10 percent of its budget — but those payments will soon end. Although both Poore and his predecessor, Kurrus, made major cuts in other areas, the district still had to trim $11 million from the 2017-18 budget.

Poore told the Arkansas Times recently that school closures were painful, but also long expected. "The reality was we had 2,300 vacant elementary seats — 4,100 when you add in the portable [buildings] — and so we took out of the mix two elementaries with maximum capacities being just under 1,000." If the LRSD doesn't close buildings, Poore argued, it would have to cut back on staff. "Yes, these two schools closing, and the preschool closing, that has an impact on our communities, but I'll tell you what could have had a bigger impact. ... When 80 percent of your business is people, now you're talking about privatizing food service, privatizing custodial. ... We could have been impacting hundreds of employees if we'd taken that route."

As for the charter school issue, Poore said he urged legislators to vote against the recent legislation, which will give charters the ability to wrest underutilized buildings away from districts. Poore has not been as outspoken as Kurrus on the potential harm that charter growth can deal to the LRSD, but he's made it clear he doesn't want the district's facilities to be colonized by outside schools. For that reason, he is moving quickly to find a new use for the Franklin and Woodruff buildings, and the district is now reviewing proposals garnered by a recent RFP.

"We're trying to be aggressive about repurposing," he said, adding later, "I don't believe we want to enhance the number of charter seats [in Little Rock] right now."

Poore argued that capital improvements are necessary if the district hopes to retain students or to win back families that have left the LRSD for charters or private schools. He pointed to studies showing modernized facilities can boost student achievement by several percentage points. "I can't control [charter growth], but what I can control is what we do. ... If you've improved academic performance and you're creating a better learning environment and it's a more pleasing building to kids and patrons, that prevents some of the issues that we're already facing right now in terms of our competitiveness. And it ties into the bigger picture of what this district has to do to have the community believe that, and, more importantly, have families say, 'I want my kid in Little Rock schools.' "

Poore also said the proposed debt extension on the May 9 ballot is "just the first phase" in a larger, long-term plan to address the full $340 million in needs identified by a 2014 study of district facilities, which will eventually require a modest millage increase. Getting the ball rolling with an initial $160 million investment will build confidence for that future vote, Poore believes. "My No. 1 target that has been given me since I came in, from the governor, the commissioner and this community, is [to] get local control back. But the No. 1 thing to do is to serve kids well, and they deserve to not have a roof that leaks. They deserve to have air conditioning that creates fresh air [and] hallways that aren't dark and dingy," he said.

Yet for many, the May 9 vote itself is a reminder that LRSD voters have not weighed in on a school issue since the September 2014 local board election — a few months before the state takeover dissolved that body. State board member Jay Barth, a Little Rock resident, recently pushed his colleagues to set a timeline for release of the district from state control, but the effort foundered.

"There are people who are critical," the superintendent acknowledged, "who say, 'Really, Mike Poore? You're coming to ask us in May to extend the debt, and you just closed schools? And really, you're coming when we don't even have local control?' Well, on the local control issue — this does allow every citizen in this whole community right now [to speak]. You can't get a truer form of democracy than everyone gets to go vote on this issue. So in that sense, it really is a deal to let the community say, 'Here's what we think.' "

And what does the community think? To get a sense, we asked school advocates on both sides to make their case.

Maxine Allen

I am a sixth-generation Little Rock residential property owner. I witnessed my parents paying a poll tax in order to vote. I am a product of the segregated and then newly integrated Little Rock School District. I attended the district at a time in which white schools received textbooks first. By the time black schools got the books, they were soiled, pages were missing and text had been marked through. In spite of all of that, I believed I received an excellent education.

I am a parent who served as a "room mother" and whose children attended Woodruff, Pulaski Heights and Williams Magnet Elementary Schools; Pulaski Heights, Horace Mann Magnet and Forest Heights Middle Schools; and Parkview and Central High Schools. I believe my children received a quality education.

I am a pastor who has served as a volunteer in public schools. I believe every child needs a great school where they are immersed in diversity, encouraged to think critically and empowered to expand their worldview. As a United Methodist, I operate within our tradition that declares education is a right of all children. This is affirmed by scripture, which calls us to "train children in the way they should go" (Proverbs 22:6).

However, I believe that we must regain local control of our schools BEFORE voting for any millage. The LRSD is no longer in academic distress (if it ever was, as six schools do not a distressed district make). While I have many friends on the opposite side of this issue, I cannot in good conscious vote for the millage until we have an elected LRSD board. There's just something about the basic American principle, "No taxation without representation." For these reasons, I urge you to vote against the millage!

Rev. Maxine Allen is the president of the Christian Ministerial Alliance.

State Sen. Joyce Elliott

Little Rock School District students deserve not just better facilities, but world-class facilities. So let's just stipulate that we all agree on that point and try to understand why many of us feel as if we are redlined to bear the burden of a master plan not revealed to us. For example, most of the millage extension supporters I have observed do not have schools closing in their neighborhoods.

LRSD students, parents/guardians, educators and others deserve to have their district back, not under state control. To this date, there has been no compelling reason put forth for the state to have assumed authority over the LRSD when 42 of the 48 schools in the district — 87 percent — were not in distress. The number has since climbed to 45 schools, or 94 percent. It was a raw exercise of power by folks who gave vague answers such as, "Well, something needed to be done." Yes — about the few schools in academic distress. Taking over the entire district was totally unwarranted. If I have a couple of teeth that need to be extracted, would you extract them all using the logic "something needed to be done"? Certainly not. But that's just what the State Board of Education did.

And now the extended apparatus of the board, Commissioner Key, has wielded power far beyond addressing the schools in academic distress by hiring a superintendent (Baker Kurrus), firing that superintendent, installing present Superintendent Michael Poore and unilaterally closing schools in historically underserved neighborhoods south of Interstate 630. And now, folks who advocated for the state board to seize control of the LRSD, such as the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, are leading the effort to extend the millage with glossy flyers and bright yard signs.

I cannot vote for a tax without elected, accountable representation. I want the best for LRSD students, but I am not prepared to dishonor the blood-soaked history of all those who sacrificed to guarantee me full citizenship rights. There are many voters who share my visceral feeling that a tax election imposed by one person is a betrayal of democracy. There are others, it appears, who have no problem with it and who are cheerleading to carry out a vote under conditions you might find in a developing country.

This election is a deliberate attempt to force us into a false dilemma: On May 9, choose better facilities for students, or choose to insist on restoration of our rights as citizens. Let us not choose but work together to demand both. Let's not give in to political extortion.

Will the folks who pleaded for the takeover now join in the demand to return the LRSD to us? I hope so. I am ready to join hands with you.

Joyce Elliott is a Democratic state senator representing a portion of Little Rock and a former teacher.

Bill Kopsky

For the first time in my life, I will be voting AGAINST a bond measure for important civic infrastructure. My opposition to the bond extension comes down to trust, transparency, accountability and inclusion.

A deep distrust rooted in more than a century of racial and economic segregation is the LRSD's biggest challenge, not finances. The state takeover and Education Commissioner Johnny Key, our one-man appointed school board, have made it worse.

Commissioner Key consistently refuses to meet with the community and has failed to produce any vision for the school district other than a massive, polarizing charter school expansion. He is barreling ahead despite clear data showing that charter schools fail to outperform LRSD schools with similar demographics. Those charters leave the LRSD with a more segregated student population and significantly fewer resources to meet their needs.

The greatest tragedy of Commissioner Key's charter mania is the distraction from effective education reforms we could be working on together. We should be expanding community schools, not closing neighborhood schools. We should be recruiting and developing more world-class teachers, not demoralizing and chasing them away. We should be building community partnerships to help our students meet their full potential, not alienating wide swaths of the city. We should be dramatically expanding early childhood education, summer and afterschool programs, and supports for low-income students and English-language learners.

The LRSD is attempting some of these reforms, but it is constantly being undermined by the state. In 2015, legislators attempted to hand the entire district over to private charter corporations. Then, the commissioner fired our superintendent, Baker Kurrus, for telling the truth about charter expansion's harmful effects. This year, the legislature passed a law requiring us to give closed school buildings to charter corporations while those in control of the district simultaneously shut down schools in the most vulnerable parts of town in a sham public engagement process.

Now with no trust, transparency or accountability, and no district-wide plan for the future, Commissioner Key asks for a bond extension? It's outrageous. How could anyone trust him with a blank check?

Those arguing for the bond extension rightly point out that LRSD facilities have many needs. They fail to make a case for the urgency of doing this while we remain under state control. The bond that we are being asked to extend doesn't expire for years to come.

There's no reason why Little Rock taxpayers can't make this decision once LRSD is back in local control. The schools our kids deserve are rooted in evidence-based and community-driven reforms. In the coming years I hope to vote for a transparent and accountable bond measure that unites our city. For now, VOTE AGAINST.

Bill Kopsky is a Little Rock School District parent and public education advocate.

Marion Humphrey Sr.

I intend to vote against extending this millage because I do not trust either Education Commissioner Johnny Key or the Arkansas State Board of Education.

Key was placed in charge of the district after the state board's racist and immoral vote on Jan. 28, 2015, to remove the lawfully elected and majority African-American district's board of directors. The takeover came after the district's board was notified by letter on July 10, 2014, that six out of its 48 schools were in academic distress. The district was given just one semester in which to correct the acknowledged problems with those schools. No further academic proficiency testing was done between the time of notification in July and the time of the takeover the following January. The fix was already in.

The state board simply wanted someone other than the duly elected district board members in control, even if that meant recklessly throwing the district into disarray and chaos in the middle of the school year. The majority of the state board removed a local school board composed of people whom the Walton Family Foundation and the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce did not want to be in charge of the district — and especially its $330 million budget.

Yet Key has not made himself available to the general public to discuss why the millage extension is necessary. Whether he does not want to disclose what he intends to do with the additional money or whether he does not have time to be bothered with some of us, Key is simply not accessible to many district patrons. Perhaps he has targeted the voters he thinks he needs for passage of the millage extension and sees no need to waste his time with others.

I am not convinced that additional money is needed to make the capital improvements that proponents suggest, and I am not confident in the judgment of Commissioner Key. If he cared about families living south of I-630, why would he close schools such as Wilson, Franklin, Woodruff and Hamilton? After all, Wilson received an exemplary rating from the Arkansas Department of Education. If our concern is truly about a great education for the children of this district, why would an intelligent and thoughtful educator close an exemplary school and do collateral damage to its neighborhood as well?

For my first time ever, I intend to vote against a school millage.

Marion A. Humphrey Sr. is a retired Pulaski County Circuit judge and a pastor at Allison Memorial Presbyterian Church.

Dr. Anika Whitfield

It is really simple. The LRSD is currently being managed by two men, both of whom were appointed to their positions, are not natives of Little Rock, did not attend the LRSD and do not have children who attend the LRSD now or in the past. Education Commissioner Johnny Key and Superintendent Michael Poore are making decisions for our district without locally elected representation or accountability.

Key will argue that he appointed the LRSD Community/Civic Advisory Board to represent the people of this city. The problem with that argument is that Key chose persons who will serve his interest in supporting the expansion of charter schools. Key has been publicly lobbying to replace traditional public education options for students with private-public charter schools.

In addition, Key has refused to meet in public settings to engage with parents and community members who have questions about school closures, community impact studies, plans for academic improvements in schools designated to be in academic distress, ways to assist traditional public schools, and ways to help advertise, recruit and promote the great programs and opportunities for students, parents and teachers in the LRSD — just to name a few of his denied requests for public meetings.

Given the fact that Key is the sole board member of the LRSD, the only person who makes the final decisions for the LRSD, and the sole person who has the power to overrule Poore's decisions, it would be unwise to hand more tax money over to this appointed leader who has shown little to no respect for the residents of Little Rock, the students who attend the LRSD and their parents. Key has publicly said that he would not be open to yielding to the Little Rock Board of Directors and mayor to conduct neighborhood impact studies before closing schools, displacing students and school personnel and taking away public, anchoring institutions from people who fund and support them.

Voting for the May 9 LRSD millage tax extension would be like Walmart giving Target money and expecting Target to use those funds to improve Walmart's business. Not going to happen. It would be like giving a thief keys to your home and expecting the thief to protect your home and possessions. Not a wise choice. I strongly encourage voters to vote AGAINST the May 9 LRSD millage tax extension.

A better investment of taxpayers' dollars, time and resources would be to directly invest in students, schools, teachers and families in the LRSD. This way, you know that your dollars will be spent on students and teachers that need these resources, and not on brick and mortar. Invest directly in students, teachers, families and schools in a way that you can ensure is actually meaningful and not destructive to the vitality of the LRSD.

Dr. Anika T. Whitfield is an LRSD graduate, an alumna of Franklin Elementary and a volunteer in the district.

Faith Madkins

As I walk the halls of McClellan High School each day, I see a small community high school filled with Lion pride, exceptional talent and growing potential. Unfortunately, with the good also comes the bad. I have immense pride in my school, but sadly I cannot say the same about my district. I have been in the Little Rock School District all of my life since kindergarten — bouncing around from school to school — and I've seen most of what the district has had to offer.

Our buildings are older than most of our parents. In fact, most of our grandparents can remember these schools being built. That means everything in these buildings is outdated. Things that would have sufficed 60 years ago would never make the cut today.

To further explain what I mean, I want to place you in my shoes. So, here we are at the doors of McClellan. It's springtime and the flowers are blooming. The sun is out, and it is beautiful outside. The bell sounds, and it is time for first period. The main halls are so cramped that it's difficult to pass through the crowd. It's hard to not feel a shoulder or a backpack invade my personal space and even harder to not trample over someone's feet. I can avoid going to my locker; I stopped using it due to the fact it frequently jammed. There wasn't enough space in there, anyway. I finally get to class and take my seat. As my teacher is talking, I can't help but be distracted by what's going on next door. Most of our walls either (a) don't reach the floor or (b) are paper-thin. Yet I am expected to focus.

A teacher of mine once said, "You know you have a friendship when you can have a conversation with disagreements and still go out for lunch." Now that I am 18, I am able to sit down at that table with you and join the conversation. Let's establish a friendship based on the well being of the students in this district. With all of our agreements and disagreements, let's at least be able to agree that the students deserve better. I deserved better, and I had to settle. Don't force other kids to do the same. Let's go out for lunch May 9.

Faith Madkins is a senior at McClellan High School.

Mollie Campbell

I am the proud mother of two, soon to be three, young children. My oldest is in pre-K at Forest Park Elementary. My younger two will follow their big sister to Forest Park, Pulaski Heights Middle School and eventually Central High. My family is committed to being in the Little Rock School District for the next 18 years. That is why this vote is so important to me.

Schools all over our district are seriously overdue for upgrades and improvements. The buildings are on average 53 to 68 years old and have gone without any major capital investments since 2000. Our kids deserve the best possible learning environment. They should not be in buildings with leaky roofs or cafeterias without air conditioning. Every student in the district deserves modern, clean, safe facilities.

This vote will invest millions back into our schools and will impact the entire district — every school and every student. Roof repairs, window replacements, new security systems, restroom renovations and heating and air conditioning replacements will improve the lives of every student, teacher and staff member in the district. The list of improvements to be made comes from a study conducted in 2014, and the funds generated will go directly toward these capital improvements ... no surprises.

Our kids deserve better. After talking with several people about this vote, I acknowledge that some would rather wait until a local school board has control of the money. I, too, look forward to the swift return of our local school board. On this issue however, how long should we ask our kids to wait and allow their education to suffer in the meantime? We cannot let perfection be the enemy of the good when we have a chance to improve all of our kids' classrooms and learning experiences immediately. By voting FOR this ballot measure on May 9, my daughter will enter kindergarten this fall in a school that was improved this summer.

Every day, as my 4-year-old walks into school, I expect her to do everything she can to maximize her learning experience. As her parent, I know it is my responsibility to do the same for her, and right now that means supporting this investment in her school and schools across the district. The time is NOW to invest in our kids and our community, so I look forward to voting FOR our kids on May 9.

Mollie Campbell is a Little Rock School District mom.

Bobby Roberts

In 2014, the Little Rock School District commissioned a facilities study that indicated that approximately $300 million in facilities upgrades and improvements were needed. In January 2015, the school board voted unanimously to approve a $375 million facilities plan.

At that same time, the Central Arkansas Library System had just opened a new library and revitalized our facilities throughout the region. These new facilities helped bring the joy of reading and learning to thousands of students. It was amazing to see the impact that a new library could have on a community by providing a place for people to read, gather, access the internet and learn. These libraries gave students the tools and resources they needed to study, learn and excel. Many of these fine new buildings were constructed when voters approved the refunding of existing bonds. This is exactly the same funding method that the LRSD is proposing to voters.

I saw firsthand what a difference investing in our libraries made in our city and in the lives of children. I know that investing in our schools would have an even greater impact. We need to give students the tools for success, and reinvesting in our aging, outdated academic facilities is the best way to do that. These old buildings do not do that, and we are hampering our students' ability to learn by denying them modern facilities.

If we vote now to extend our bonds, we will raise an additional $160 million to begin addressing the needs of our school facilities. Every school, and therefore every community, in the district will feel the investment of this money by the 2017-18 school year. This investment in our neighborhoods will save us huge dividends by lowering the operational costs of our schools and making them more energy efficient, with better lighting and renovated restrooms and roofs.

By providing them with new facilities, modern technology and a better learning environment, we will empower our students to succeed. By improving their schools, we can increase academic achievement while also providing them with a safer and healthier learning atmosphere. Join me in supporting our kids; join me by voting FOR on May 9.

Bobby Roberts is the former director of the Central Arkansas Library System.

Keith Jackson

As the founder of P.A.R.K., I understand the importance of investing in education. We see the impact that P.A.R.K's modern facility in Southwest Little Rock has on the success of our students. By supporting this vote, you are ensuring that every student in the district will be able to learn in a new and improved learning environment.

In Southwest Little Rock, this vote means that over $95 million will be invested into the community. At a cost of $55 million, a new high school off of Mabelvale Pike would be built beginning this summer and would serve hundreds of students. This school would open in the fall of 2019 and would be equipped with the newest classroom and athletic facilities. With 21st century sports facilities that would be available for community usage, this new high school would benefit everyone in the community.

McClellan High School would also receive a $40 million investment, completely revitalizing the school. Improvements like updated HVAC, roof and window repairs, classroom remodeling and technology updates would create energy savings and enhance the learning environment for our students. This repurposing of McClellan will change the lives of every student that will go through the school.

Improved schools throughout the district can only be a good thing for Little Rock and our community. A vote FOR on May 9 will be a major boost for Southwest Little Rock. With your support, we can give our kids the modern learning environment and facilities they deserve!

Keith Jackson is the founder of Positive Atmosphere Reaches Kids, a nonprofit based in Southwest Little Rock that provides afterschool and summer programming for youth.

Gary Smith

There have been no new major capital improvements in our schools since 2000. That means that a student graduating this year will have gone through his or her entire academic career in schools that are outdated and in dire need of improvement. By voting to extend the debt on our bonds for an additional 14 years, we will be able to invest $160 million into rebuilding and rehabilitating every school in our district — all without raising the tax rate.

On average, district elementary school buildings are 68 years old, middle school buildings are 69 years old and high school buildings are 53 years old. A successful election will allow the district to make much-needed improvements district-wide before the start of the 2017-18 school year, including lighting, heat and air conditioning repair and window and roof replacements. These improved facilities will not only support the increased academic achievement of our students by improving their learning environment, but will also create a return on investment by decreasing energy costs. These improvements were selected as priorities after holding 46 community forums.

I'm tired of Little Rock being a donut hole. I'm tired of being surrounded by other cities that are investing in their schools and making a difference in their students' lives. We have watched surrounding districts pass millage increases, build new schools and improve existing ones, and we have done nothing for nearly 20 years. We have a chance now to make a difference.

This choice should be an easy one. We cannot have a great city and a great community without a strong, viable school district. Students are going to go to school tomorrow in a school that desperately needs help. They are going to use outdated technology and go to class in buildings with leaky roofs. This is something we can change. We need to create a better atmosphere for our students, and this vote is the way to do that.

Gary Smith is the chairman of the Committee to Rebuild our Schools Now.

          Late Night Woman's Hour: Travel & Adventure   
Women have always dreamed of escaping their ordinary lives - but it's only in recent history that travel has become a legitimate opportunity to do so - and then only for some. Lauren discusses the pleasures and pitfalls of wanderlust, with some very well-travelled women... LOIS PRYCE has travelled the world alone on her motorbike. Named one of the greatest female travellers by the Daily Telegraph she has written a number of books about her life as - her word - and adventuress. RANA RAHIMPOUR grew up in Iran and had to seek her parents' permission as a young female student to go travelling in her own country. Now based in London she presents on the BBC's Persian TV network. Her decision to move here means she cannot return to Iran even to visit because under the present regime BBC employees face arrest. She has also written about being stopped from travelling to the US by Donald Trump's travel ban.... CAROLYN PEARSON is the founder of women's travel network MAIDEN VOYAGE. It seeks to make life easier for women travelling alone, and was inspired by her own experiences. VICTORIA ADE-GENSCHOW who was born in Manchester but is now based in Berlin. A passionate advocate of travelling with a family and on a budget, she blogs at and her motto is "just go.".
          Re: Tom Roderick’s Final Top 10   

The motorcycle dealerships where I live are bursting at the seams with unsold new inventory; i.e., sales are down. I am not a motorcycle industry or moto-journalism expert, but it seems both industries are in upheaval due to demographic, economic, and technological factors, and it's not clear what the reformed motorcycle and moto-journalism industries will look like in five (5) years.

Perhaps, the proliferation of moto-vloggers and other social media outlets for motorcycle-related content will render the flagship motorcycle industry publications obsolete. Or, maybe they will operate with fewer full time editors and writers.

Manufacturers have begun to invite moto vloggers with large YouTube audiences to first ride launches in exotic locations. Though vloggers do not possess the expertise found among moto-journalists such as those at MO, several produce high-quality and entertaining videos. Moreover, these vloggers theoretically depend on viewers as opposed to advertisers, but that's an oversimplification. There are only so many invitations to a first ride launch, and I suspect these moto-vloggers are displacing mainstream moto-journalists.

I would be great if Tom and Troy and other moto-journalists who leave moto-journalism could make periodic contributions to motorcycle-related publications while pursuing other careers. Who knows, maybe that will become the new normal (I hate that phrase) in moto-journalism. There is no substitute for content from writers with real expertise, but if the motorcycle sales continue to founder, the industry will continue to lose talent.

Change (i.e., transitions) is never easy.

          How Ilorin high court ruled N4b damages in Saraki Libel case against Sahara reporters   
The fight between Sahara reporters founderOmoleye Sowore and Nigeria senate president,Olubukola Saraki took a new turn when the latter won a judgement against the publisher.
Justice Adeyinka Oyinloye of an Ilorin High Court in Kwara state, ordered the publisher, to pay the sum of N4 billion as damages to the Senate President,over a series of libelous stories published on the news platform from September to December 2015.

Saraki through his lawyer, Babatunde Olomu, approached the court for an intervention

following the publication of series of stories against him by Sahara Reporters.

Both Sowore and Sahara Reporters were joined as defendants in the suit marked as KWS/23/2017.

According to Saraki's counsel, the defendants had refused to defend the case despite the service of the summons on them. Olomu said the first series of service involved an arrangement between the office of the Nigerian ministry of Justice and their counterpart in New York, the operational base of the medium.

When that failed, the counsel said the claimant thereafter seized the opportunities of a visit to Nigeria by Sowore to serve him at his two properties in Ikeja area of Lagos state.

The relief granted to Saraki by the court include “the sum of N1 billion as general and aggravated damages for libelous words falsely, maliciously and recklessly published by the defendants of and concerning the claimant in the online issue of Sahara Reporters of October 5, 2015 under the caption “Nigeria at 55: Bukola Saraki and 83 Inmates Are Running the Asylum.

“The sum of N1 billion as general and aggravated damages for libelous words falsely, maliciously and recklessly published by the defendants of and concerning the claimant in the online issue of Sahara Reporters of Sahara Reporters of September 20, 2015 under the caption: “A polished Name for political immorality. Time for Saraki to Go!.

“The sum of N1 billion as general and aggravated damages for libelous words falsely, maliciously and recklessly published by the defendants of and concerning the claimant in the online issue of Sahara Reporters of Sahara Reporters of November 09, 2015 under the caption: “Bukola Saraki On a shopping Spree to Buy Judges…Stop Being a Clown And A Coward Man Up, face The Music”

“The sum of N1 billion as general and aggravated damages for libelous words falsely, maliciously and recklessly published by the defendants of and concerning the claimant in the online issue of Sahara Reporters of Sahara Reporters of December 1, 2015 under the caption: “Arms Contract Scandal: Senator Saraki Blackmailed CBN Officials To Pay N250 Million Hush Funds.”

“An order for injunction restraining the defendants from further writing, printing or causing to be written, printed or circulated or otherwise published of the claimant the said, or similar libel.

“An order directing the defendants to remove the offending publications from its website on the internet within three days from the date of judgment and an order directing the defendants to publish an apology to the claimant on its online newspaper and in three other daily newspapers.”

Sowore on the other hand's reaction was predictable as he took to his Facebook page to give his verdict on the ruling.
Have we heard the end of this? You bet not.Watch this space.

          John Paul Pet Lavender Mint Shampoo & Detangling Spray + Giveaway   

  We are all familiar with the John Paul Mitchell name in hair care products. Co-founder, John Paul DeJoria revolutionized the hair care industry by banning animal testing on his products over 30 years ago. John’s extensive knowledge in formulating products for hair and skin care have also led to new standards for pet grooming and hygiene [...]

The post John Paul Pet Lavender Mint Shampoo & Detangling Spray + Giveaway appeared first on Queen of Reviews.

          New Single Serve Cups from The Honest Kitchen   

In 2002, Lucy, the co-founder of The Honest Kitchen was making pureed  food for her dog Mosi in her kitchen, the food was great, Mosi was loving it but boy was it messy. Lucy began thinking about how to make the same quality food with whole, colorful and healthy ingredients, but also be easy to [...]

The post New Single Serve Cups from The Honest Kitchen appeared first on Queen of Reviews.

          DripJoy – Experience single serve coffee, Joyfully better   

DripJoy began in 2016 when founder Zach Randall’s fourth single server brewer broke. Zach decided that is was time to fix the problem himself. We all know that coffee fuels productivity worldwide and has for years. Zach felt that other single serve brewers on the market were designed for convenience over quality and he wanted [...]

The post DripJoy – Experience single serve coffee, Joyfully better appeared first on Queen of Reviews.

          New Spruce Duck & Sweet Potato Dog Food from The Honest Kitchen   

In 2002, Lucy, the co-founder of The Honest Kitchen was making pureed  food for her dog Mosi in her kitchen, the food was great, Mosi was loving it but boy was it messy. Lucy began thinking about how to make the same quality food with whole, colorful and healthy ingredients, but also be easy to [...]

The post New Spruce Duck & Sweet Potato Dog Food from The Honest Kitchen appeared first on Queen of Reviews.

Japan, 1974
Director: Masahiro Shinoda
Starring: Shima Iwashita, Masao Kusakari, Rie Yokoyama, Rentaro Mikuni, Jun Hamamura
IMDB: 7.2

Himiko, a film by Japanese new wave director Masahiro Shinoda, has apparently never been available on DVD, even in Japan - making it one of the many lost gems that were undeservedly forgotten when studio catalogues were upgraded from VHS to DVD.

Thankfully, Criterion have resurrected this rare film on their streaming Hulu channel (although at present Hulu is not available outside of USA and Japan. For readers outside of these two countries, your only recourse is to resort to the nefarious and sub-legal realms of the cyber-underworld where I'm told it can be found.)

Queen Himiko (played by legendary actress, and Shinoda's wife, Shima Iwashita) was a 3rd century historical figure in early Japan, and a topic of much academic debate to this day as to her exact location, time period, and even her name. But she is well known to the Japanese, much as Cleopatra is to us Westerners.

Part of her legend is that she was a shaman/sorceress who worshipped the sun, attended by 1000 maidens. Shinoda has incorporated this and many other historical details into a film that at first glance, feels suprisingly modern and experimental. The interiors, for instance, look remarkably unrealistic and akin far more to theatre sets. This does however allow him to concentrate more on the drama, and simultaneously achieve some truly memorable visuals.

And this is definitely a film for the arthouse crowd. Shinoda seems more than a little preoccupied with creating a visual spectacle for spectacle's sake, and that's just fine with me. The addition of famed Butoh dancer (and founder) Tatsumi Hijikata and his troupe add interpretive dance sequences and a unique visual flair throughout.

The drama concentrates on the political machinations of Himiko's advisor Nashime (Rentaro Mikuni) and the love triangle that develops beween her, her half-brother Takehiko (Masao Kusakari), and one of her female oracles, Adahime (Rie Yokoyama). And it's quite a saucy affair too. Not only is Himiko dispensing sexual favours to Nashime, and bedding her half-brother - but she's also ' making love' to the Sun God in ritual ceremonies as well!

However she falls hard for Takehiko, who commits the unforgivable sin of sleeping with Adahime on the side. Unsurprisingly it ends badly for all involved.

As an introduction to the legend of Himiko, the film fulfills it's purpose, and with no small amount of style. The cast is terrific, and the visuals often amazing. It is however a product of its time - experimental, arty, and very different to modern Hollywood fare.

My rating: 7.5/10
Recommended for film lovers open to something different.

          One of the Country's Best Pastry Chefs Pops Up at Fluff Bake Bar Saturday   
Kelly Fields, a 2017 finalist for the James Beard Outstanding Chef and founder of New Orleans bakery/Southern eatery Willa Jean, will be in town on Saturday, July 1, and if you have half the sense of a Hostess Ding Dong, you'll be at Fluff Bake Bar to check out her...
          Five questions for Michael Workman about From Parts Unknown   

In his upcoming documentary, Missoula filmmaker Michael Workman follows a group of Spokane's independent backyard wrestlers. The main focus of the story is Jesse Lawson, the founder of Spokane Anarchy Wrestling, who uses his wrestling character, "Madman," as one way to cope with PTSD and depression.…
          One Belt, One Road... Implications for Mission   

Not long ago I was in Hong Kong and the talk of the town was China’s One Belt, One Road plan to catalyze business ventures across Asia and into Europe.

For those of you never hearing of the idea, check out this interview by McKinsey & Company: China’s One Belt, One Road: Will it reshape global trade?

It’s certainly a breathtaking economic initiative and many wonder if it’ll come to fruition because of the massive infrastructure costs it will take to pull everything together. One thing we can say, China is ambitious!

For me, the talk was all about how important this enterprise will become for the Gospel’s advance. Christian business leader after Christian business leader were extolling the potential, saying we must capitalize on this moment because the potential is too big to miss! And, the timing is interesting in that the country’s Church has laid an ambitious plan to repay the debt they owe God be sending 20,000 missionaries from their country across these belts and roads by 2030: see Vision 2030 and Asian believers cast vision for massive outreach.

The idea is not without its critiques either: Check out Asian Access Council of Reference Member and ChinaSource CEO Dr. Brent Fulton’s reflections—One Belt, One Road, One Mission?

Certainly, the extraordinary plan will be something to watch in the upcoming decade. And, regardless of its success, the implications are enormous and worth thinking about. For Asian Access, we will continue coming alongside leaders in this country to fulfill our founders dream, “My Vision is to Empower your Vision!” and one new way we are approaching these throughout various sectors of society is our new business venture. Check it out:

We used to see our role as exclusively coming alongside emerging young pastors, leaders of leaders who have potential to influence their cities, regions and countries. Now, we realize that in order to fully fulfill our vision, we also must come alongside emerging young leaders in the business sector as well. Together, we aspire to see the Church overcome the “Sacred/Secular Divide” and catalyze a movement “to see a vibrant community of servant leaders… leading the Church across Asia… to unite the Church, multiply leaders and congregations and extend the transforming power of the Gospel.”


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          Palmer Luckey gives monetary middle finger to Facebook and Oculus   

Palmer Luckey, co-founder of Oculus virtual reality, gave his old employers at Oculus and Facebook a huge middle finger this week by donating thousands of dollars to a VR project that makes Oculus-exclusive VR games playable on its competitor's VR device, the HTC Vive.

The creator behind Revive, a pet project aimed at breaking down exclusivity barriers for VR systems, confirmed Thursday that the big jump in donations per month on his Patreon came from Luckey.

SEE ALSO: 'Echo Arena' is the first VR game that made me forget I was real

Luckey parted ways with Oculus and Facebook in March following the revelation that he was a Donald Trump supporter and had previously said some negative things about Hillary Clinton. He later denied this after his departure. Read more...

More about Tech, Gaming, Virtual Reality, Vr, and Oculus
          London’s Fashion Illustration Gallery Mounts Art Fair   
The event is being held in association with Yu Capital and Fashion Illustration Gallery founder William Ling.
          Business Model vs. Revenue Model   

My column in the December issue of the Entrepreneur magazine:  Assuming that the term ‘Business Model’ is the same as ‘Revenue Model’ is assuming that the word ‘aspiration’ means ‘inspiration’. Then, you might as well assume that the surname Singh is the same as Kejriwal.  The terms Business Model and Revenue Model are as distinct as chalk and cheese. Yes, they do look white at times and that’s how close they ever get.  To explain their distinction, let’s first consider Twitter – a company we are all familiar with (errr… if you don’t have a twitter handle, then please ask your kids to get you one before reading further!).  Now, let’s ask: What is the “Business” of Twitter? The website says “Twitter helps you create and share ideas and information instantly, without barriers.”  To deploy its business, Twitter like any other business in the world, needs a Business Model. That Business Model is the ‘engine’ that creates, executes, delivers and services the business. As an exercise, let’s break down some of the engine-parts of Twitter:  Product – Clearly, Twitter is a product that you have to use ‘as is’. You cannot customize Twitter too much and create your own version  Rules – What is allowed, what isn’t; how do the checks and balances work? These change over time.  Usage & access – Who can use Twitter? Clearly, anyone. Usage defines the ‘market’ that the company is going after and sets the controls of access etc.  Availability – How and where will the product of Twitter be made available? Currently via the web, as a mobile app and as a mobile service.  I am sure you can list the rest of the engine parts. Do it! It will be a neat exercise.  The Business Model is the magical assembly that makes all these moving parts come together and actually creates a live, real business!  But engines can be pretty ineffective unless they are used for a real purpose! That is the real genius of a Business Model. Creating a ‘magical use’ of the Business Model that makes the company propel itself forward, like a rocket, shooting into the universe. The founding entrepreneurs, the core team and people in the company at the very early stage are usually the magicians! (This is also why startups are such fun!)  In the case of Twitter, the genius of allowing ‘followers’ &‘following’, trends, and the absolutely ubiquitous ‘#’ hashtag is what sprinkled magic on its Business Model and made it a household name. The ‘rule’ of 140 characters created an amazing reduction in reading clutter that today, allows us to read hundreds of tweets at a time, without getting tired or bored.  Was the need to add @ before every user name a good business idea? Surely not. It made Twitter a ‘techy’ product and intimidated a lot of people. Could the @ have been dropped just after the launch when the business began to show a strain in user adoption? I think so. This is one example of a defect design in Twitter’s Business Model with respect to usability (the simpler the product, the faster it scales).  Twitter really took off on gossip. And when Hollywood personalities began using it as their digital mouthpiece. The company’s Business Model was clearly proven out when tweets exploded and we saw twitter handles everywhere.  Twitter listed on the NYSE in the first week of November and was valued at 22 billion dollars at the time of writing this article.  Therefore, let’s park the point that the business of Twitter, propelled by a massively successful Business Model was proven massively successful by its IPO and 22 billion dollar market value. Now let’s tackle Revenue Model.  In the exercise of listing the engine parts of the Twitter engine, you may have listed ‘revenue’ as one of the items. Good going and good thinking!  For many years, no one really knew the Revenue Model of Twitter; if and how they made money; and if there was as a plan. I vaguely remember that when the co-founders of Twitter were once asked what their Revenue Model was, they shrugged and said, “We are trying to figure it out”. Evidently the Revenue Model of their massively explosive business was not top of their mind.  I applaud the Twitter co-founders for their unconventional and contrarian thinking; and for delaying the creation of its Revenue Model while they were perfecting its Business Model. Clearly placing the horse before the cart and not the other way around!  In the Twitter IPO listing, revenues of the company were pegged at about US$ 400 million (for 9 months). Let us assume that they will generate US$ 500 million by the year end.  Where does the money come from? Evidently, from advertising via ‘sponsored tweets’. Now, only a few ‘involved’ consumers even notice these sponsored tweets that appear interspersed while reading tweets on twitter walls.  So, is the Revenue Model of the almighty Twitter only advertisements, served via these chintu-mintu non-intrusive and elegant sponsored tweets?  Maybe, maybe not. But what is clear is that the Revenue Model halo isn’t eclipsing the Business Model of Twitter that is currently going gangbusters. Also, anyone who understands public markets will also tell you that stock investors do not value a company generating US$ 500 million in revenue for US$ 22 billion. Undoubtedly, investors are paying for Business Model vs. Revenue Model.  At this juncture, let me throw a spanner in the works and remind you of the Internet behemoth called Myspace that was launched in 2003. The site was a social networking platform for music rockstars and their fans.  By 2005, Myspace had boom, boom, boomed! It became the most popular social networking site in the world and was acquired by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation for US$ 580 million. Myspace also became the launch pad for other big startups like RockYou and Zynga and dominated the traffic charts.  In June 2006 Myspace surpassed Google as the most visited website in the USA!  You will not refute me when I state that in 2006, the Business Model of Myspace was absolutely stellar! I mean have you ever heard of any website beating the traffic of Google in USA?!  Alas! Myspace sat on the wall. Myspace had a great fall. All of Murdoch’s finances and all of Murdoch’s men Couldn’t put Myspace together again. In a couple of years after its peak, Myspace crashed into oblivion. In June 2011, the once Herculean Myspace was acquired by Justin Timberlake and Specific Media Group for a measly, vada pav price of US$ 35 million! A site that had beaten Google in traffic was now a piece of scrap.  What went wrong? What made Myspace implode, crash and burn? A very badly implemented REVENUE MODEL!!  At its peak, Myspace entered into an advertising contract with Google that guaranteed Myspace US$ 900 million  in minimum revenue over a 3 year period. This deal badly compromised the user experience on the website that was anyway reeling under heavy advertising. To honor the Google deal, Myspace had to spray the site with ads. The Myspace CEO Chris DeWolfe reported that he had to push back against Fox Interactive Media’s sales team who monetized the site without regard to user experience (Source – Wikipedia).  Just like Diwali crakers, Myspace crackled, fizzled and burnt out. The company’s Revenue Model had destroyed the Business Model on which the entire business was built!  To put it metaphorically, the Revenue Model component in the Myspace engine was such a defective part, that it bust the engine itself. Considering the Twitter and the Myspace examples, let me summarize as: – The Business Model of any enterprise is unique, distinct and very, very sacred. It’s the soul of the business that needs to be cultivated, nourished, and preserved. The difference between failed, mediocre and spectacular companies is their Business Model and the magical genius that it comes wrapped in. – The Revenue Model is an offshoot of a sound Business Model and can wait. It’s a dangerous, volatile, elusive element that needs to be eased into a business like a foreign article entering a sacred body. With care and utmost caution. A successful combination of a great Business Model and Revenue Model results in a Google of today or a Facebook of tomorrow. But if you place your Revenue Model on the throne and crown it as king, with your Business Model as its slave, then you will land up with a Myspace of yesterday.  ****** Read ALL my other articles published in Entrepreneur mag HERE. ****** First Published on: Dec 3, 2013

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          Comment on Republican Senate restores spending in NASA budget by Cotour   
Related because its about government spending, and government spending is about taxation: I got into a political "discussion" with a lady friend the other day (Read: Loud head to head head butting that ended with a nice hug :) Her big issues? Trump and the "RICH" have too much money and her taxes are too high, and Trump is going to become Hitler! (What ?) I wrote a private little poem for her that preceded this piece but thought it not appropriate to share. "On another subject: 51.6 percent of all taxes collected by the government are from just 2.7 percent of the population, the "RICH". The rest of the taxes collected, 49.4 percent, come from the remaining 97.3 percent of the population. (2.7 % of the population the “Rich” pay 51.6 percent of all the taxes in the country, as per PEW) If you are interested in lowering your taxes there needs to be less government confiscation of it. So if you are FOR, among many other things, universal healthcare (Read: Welfare / healthcare is not a right but a service that must be paid for. Everyone should have it but someone must pay for it), open borders and illegal immigrants being supported by our social welfare systems, a culture of dependency created by political party’s in order to ensure a dedicated voting block to keep them in power, then you are insisting on higher and higher taxation. That is the Liberal / Democrat model. The Republicans have their own issues that create higher taxation. (Both party’s are by nature corrupt) Government, any government, is from its inception a corrupt and perverted operation, that is what was well understood by the Founders of America. All government can be is corrupt, the only question is to what degree. Your personal dislike of Trump is understandable, he seems to be a bore, but his kind of unique personality and skill set is perfect for Washington and its kind of corruption. He is sooo disruptive to the everyday perverted and corrupt business that goes on in Washington that in the long term he will IMO prove a net positive. What is the by design institutional counter balance to any president? The Constitution. Any president can not just do as they please, there are counter balances in the form of the Congress and the courts. Trump is no Hitler, could never become a Hitler. That is a false political narrative. Why? Because the Founders of America understood the nature of man and the nature of man as it relates to governance / government and power. And they designed mechanisms to limit the power of any and all presidents. So instead of spending time worrying about who has how much or too much $$, it might be a better idea to figure out who is spending all the money, your tax money, and limit how they can spend it. NO?"
          Shareholders vote for Dell to go private   
Computer firm founder Michael Dell has gained shareholder approval for his offer to take the company private.That ends a seven month long ... Shareholders vote for Dell to go private
          King’s Wealth: Gold Stocks Playbook   

In order to become a successful mining investor, you must understand the playbook: Submitted by Streetwise:  the King’s Wealth: The Complete Gold and Silver Stocks Playbook, by Tom Beck, founder of Portfolio Wealth Global, that will continue over the next seven weeks. In order to become a successful mining investor, you must understand the playbook. […]

The post King’s Wealth: Gold Stocks Playbook appeared first on Silver Doctors.

          Sri Lanka: When the whole world isn't watching   
Joel Charny
Reuters AlertNet
28 Jan 09

One of the harsh realities of the humanitarian field is that some crises capture public attention, while others do not. The patterns are rather rigid. Crises in Europe and the Middle East, especially Palestine, make headlines. Large-scale natural disasters, even in obscure places, attract interest due to the inherent human fascination with immense forces beyond our control. But crises due to “complex” political conflicts outside the zones of proven public engagement are doomed to obscurity, unless it rises to such a level that “genocide” (read “another Holocaust”) can be invoked.

The contrast between Gaza and Sri Lanka prompts these observations. In Gaza, despite restrictions on international humanitarian and media access imposed by the Israelis, the whole world was watching, counting the civilian casualties minute-by-minute, while the global debate swirled on the legitimacy of Israeli and Hamas conduct in the light of international humanitarian law. The conflict and the suffering that it engendered were daily front page news. Now, with at least a temporary halt in hostilities, assessments of the damage in Gaza will proceed and donors will pledge millions of dollars for the rebuilding process.

While Gaza was the world’s focus, a conflict that raises similar issues and challenges was proceeding in the Vanni region in the north of Sri Lanka. There, the Sri Lankan military is trying to deal the final death blow to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the guerilla movement that has been fighting for an independent state for the country’s Tamil minority in the northern part of the island. As in Gaza, civilians are trapped. Approximately 250,000 people are caught in the conflict zone, people who have already been displaced numerous times and have suffered from the perpetual difficulty of sustaining humanitarian assistance as the 25-year civil war has dragged on.

As in Gaza, the conduct of both sides has been problematic from the perspective of international humanitarian law and human rights. The Tigers are preventing people, including the local staff of UN agencies and their families, from fleeing the conflict zone. The Sri Lankan army is using heavy weaponry to shell areas where civilians are present. An attempt by the Sri Lankan army to set up a safe zone outside its area of operations foundered in the past few days, with dozens of civilians killed amid mutual recriminations by the combatants. Fewer than 5,000 Tamil civilians have managed to escape the Vanni. They are being held in government-run fenced camps in districts bordering the conflict zone with their freedom of movement restricted, even though they are Sri Lankan citizens.

The Sri Lankan government insisted that international staff of humanitarian agencies leave the Vanni in September 2008, and the conflict has drastically reduced the scale of humanitarian operations. There are few independent witnesses of the consequences of the war and the needs of the civilian population. Those present are afraid to speak out for fear of retaliation by one of the parties. The lack of information makes it even more difficult for the world to focus on the conflict, exactly what the government and the Tigers want. They both prefer to act with impunity, while using the atrocities of the other side to score propaganda points within the narrow confines of the national press and the global Tamil solidarity network.

In short, 50% of the civilian population of the Vanni is displaced; humanitarian assistance is sporadic at best; 250,000 civilians are trapped in a conflict zone, and at least 100 have been killed since January 1st; international access is virtually nil. And while on January 26th the Secretary-General was finally moved to issue a statement pleading for respect for international humanitarian law, the world couldn’t be bothered. As of January 27th, not even Relief Web was listing Sri Lanka as an on-going crisis on its home page. The dying and wounded in Sri Lanka won’t have names or faces.

Bemoaning this neglect won’t change it. The blatant disparities in international attention are just part of “the cost of doing business” in the humanitarian field.

To Sri Lankans crying out for solidarity and assistance, there is little to say. The challenge of addressing their needs falls primarily to local organizations with the courage to defy the conflicting parties, while international organizations, with the exception of the International Committee of the Red Cross, are consigned to the sidelines.

Joel R. Charny is vice president for policy with Refugees International, a Washington-based humanitarian advocacy organisation. He has extensive experience in Asia for RI, Oxfam America and the U.N. Development Programme. He has managed and assessed emergency response and post-conflict recovery programmes in Cambodia, Sri Lanka and Indonesia.
          China's Charter 08   
China's Charter 08
New York Review of Books
Volume 56, Number 1 · January 15, 2009

Translated from the Chinese by Perry Link

The document below, signed by more than two thousand Chinese citizens, was conceived and written in conscious admiration of the founding of Charter 77 in Czechoslovakia, where, in January 1977, more than two hundred Czech and Slovak intellectuals formed a
loose, informal, and open association of people...united by the will to strive individually and collectively for respect for human and civil rights in our country and throughout the world.
The Chinese document calls not for ameliorative reform of the current political system but for an end to some of its essential features, including one-party rule, and their replacement with a system based on human rights and democracy.

The prominent citizens who have signed the document are from both outside and inside the government, and include not only well-known dissidents and intellectuals, but also middle-level officials and rural leaders. They chose December 10, the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as the day on which to express their political ideas and to outline their vision of a constitutional, democratic China. They want Charter 08 to serve as a blueprint for fundamental political change in China in the years to come. The signers of the document will form an informal group, open-ended in size but united by a determination to promote democratization and protection of human rights in China and beyond.

Following the text is a postscript describing some of the regime's recent reactions to it.

—Perry Link

A hundred years have passed since the writing of China's first constitution. 2008 also marks the sixtieth anniversary of the promulgation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the thirtieth anniversary of the appearance of the Democracy Wall in Beijing, and the tenth of China's signing of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. We are approaching the twentieth anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen massacre of pro-democracy student protesters. The Chinese people, who have endured human rights disasters and uncountable struggles across these same years, now include many who see clearly that freedom, equality, and human rights are universal values of humankind and that democracy and constitutional government are the fundamental framework for protecting these values.

By departing from these values, the Chinese government's approach to "modernization" has proven disastrous. It has stripped people of their rights, destroyed their dignity, and corrupted normal human intercourse. So we ask: Where is China headed in the twenty-first century? Will it continue with "modernization" under authoritarian rule, or will it embrace universal human values, join the mainstream of civilized nations, and build a democratic system? There can be no avoiding these questions.

The shock of the Western impact upon China in the nineteenth century laid bare a decadent authoritarian system and marked the beginning of what is often called "the greatest changes in thousands of years" for China. A "self-strengthening movement" followed, but this aimed simply at appropriating the technology to build gunboats and other Western material objects. China's humiliating naval defeat at the hands of Japan in 1895 only confirmed the obsolescence of China's system of government. The first attempts at modern political change came with the ill-fated summer of reforms in 1898, but these were cruelly crushed by ultraconservatives at China's imperial court. With the revolution of 1911, which inaugurated Asia's first republic, the authoritarian imperial system that had lasted for centuries was finally supposed to have been laid to rest. But social conflict inside our country and external pressures were to prevent it; China fell into a patchwork of warlord fiefdoms and the new republic became a fleeting dream.

The failure of both "self- strengthening" and political renovation caused many of our forebears to reflect deeply on whether a "cultural illness" was afflicting our country. This mood gave rise, during the May Fourth Movement of the late 1910s, to the championing of "science and democracy." Yet that effort, too, foundered as warlord chaos persisted and the Japanese invasion [beginning in Manchuria in 1931] brought national crisis.

Victory over Japan in 1945 offered one more chance for China to move toward modern government, but the Communist defeat of the Nationalists in the civil war thrust the nation into the abyss of totalitarianism. The "new China" that emerged in 1949 proclaimed that "the people are sovereign" but in fact set up a system in which "the Party is all-powerful." The Communist Party of China seized control of all organs of the state and all political, economic, and social resources, and, using these, has produced a long trail of human rights disasters, including, among many others, the Anti-Rightist Campaign (1957), the Great Leap Forward (1958–1960), the Cultural Revolution (1966–1969), the June Fourth [Tiananmen Square] Massacre (1989), and the current repression of all unauthorized religions and the suppression of the weiquan rights movement [a movement that aims to defend citizens' rights promulgated in the Chinese Constitution and to fight for human rights recognized by international conventions that the Chinese government has signed]. During all this, the Chinese people have paid a gargantuan price. Tens of millions have lost their lives, and several generations have seen their freedom, their happiness, and their human dignity cruelly trampled.

During the last two decades of the twentieth century the government policy of "Reform and Opening" gave the Chinese people relief from the pervasive poverty and totalitarianism of the Mao Zedong era, and brought substantial increases in the wealth and living standards of many Chinese as well as a partial restoration of economic freedom and economic rights. Civil society began to grow, and popular calls for more rights and more political freedom have grown apace. As the ruling elite itself moved toward private ownership and the market economy, it began to shift from an outright rejection of "rights" to a partial acknowledgment of them.

In 1998 the Chinese government signed two important international human rights conventions; in 2004 it amended its constitution to include the phrase "respect and protect human rights"; and this year, 2008, it has promised to promote a "national human rights action plan." Unfortunately most of this political progress has extended no further than the paper on which it is written. The political reality, which is plain for anyone to see, is that China has many laws but no rule of law; it has a constitution but no constitutional government. The ruling elite continues to cling to its authoritarian power and fights off any move toward political change.

The stultifying results are endemic official corruption, an undermining of the rule of law, weak human rights, decay in public ethics, crony capitalism, growing inequality between the wealthy and the poor, pillage of the natural environment as well as of the human and historical environments, and the exacerbation of a long list of social conflicts, especially, in recent times, a sharpening animosity between officials and ordinary people.

As these conflicts and crises grow ever more intense, and as the ruling elite continues with impunity to crush and to strip away the rights of citizens to freedom, to property, and to the pursuit of happiness, we see the powerless in our society—the vulnerable groups, the people who have been suppressed and monitored, who have suffered cruelty and even torture, and who have had no adequate avenues for their protests, no courts to hear their pleas—becoming more militant and raising the possibility of a violent conflict of disastrous proportions. The decline of the current system has reached the point where change is no longer optional.


This is a historic moment for China, and our future hangs in the balance. In reviewing the political modernization process of the past hundred years or more, we reiterate and endorse basic universal values as follows:

Freedom. Freedom is at the core of universal human values. Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of association, freedom in where to live, and the freedoms to strike, to demonstrate, and to protest, among others, are the forms that freedom takes. Without freedom, China will always remain far from civilized ideals.

Human rights. Human rights are not bestowed by a state. Every person is born with inherent rights to dignity and freedom. The government exists for the protection of the human rights of its citizens. The exercise of state power must be authorized by the people. The succession of political disasters in China's recent history is a direct consequence of the ruling regime's disregard for human rights.

Equality. The integrity, dignity, and freedom of every person—regardless of social station, occupation, sex, economic condition, ethnicity, skin color, religion, or political belief—are the same as those of any other. Principles of equality before the law and equality of social, economic, cultural, civil, and political rights must be upheld.

Republicanism. Republicanism, which holds that power should be balanced among different branches of government and competing interests should be served, resembles the traditional Chinese political ideal of "fairness in all under heaven." It allows different interest groups and social assemblies, and people with a variety of cultures and beliefs, to exercise democratic self-government and to deliberate in order to reach peaceful resolution of public questions on a basis of equal access to government and free and fair competition.

Democracy. The most fundamental principles of democracy are that the people are sovereign and the people select their government. Democracy has these characteristics: (1) Political power begins with the people and the legitimacy of a regime derives from the people. (2) Political power is exercised through choices that the people make. (3) The holders of major official posts in government at all levels are determined through periodic competitive elections. (4) While honoring the will of the majority, the fundamental dignity, freedom, and human rights of minorities are protected. In short, democracy is a modern means for achieving government truly "of the people, by the people, and for the people."

Constitutional rule. Constitutional rule is rule through a legal system and legal regulations to implement principles that are spelled out in a constitution. It means protecting the freedom and the rights of citizens, limiting and defining the scope of legitimate government power, and providing the administrative apparatus necessary to serve these ends.


Authoritarianism is in general decline throughout the world; in China, too, the era of emperors and overlords is on the way out. The time is arriving everywhere for citizens to be masters of states. For China the path that leads out of our current predicament is to divest ourselves of the authoritarian notion of reliance on an "enlightened overlord" or an "honest official" and to turn instead toward a system of liberties, democracy, and the rule of law, and toward fostering the consciousness of modern citizens who see rights as fundamental and participation as a duty. Accordingly, and in a spirit of this duty as responsible and constructive citizens, we offer the following recommendations on national governance, citizens' rights, and social development:

1. A New Constitution. We should recast our present constitution, rescinding its provisions that contradict the principle that sovereignty resides with the people and turning it into a document that genuinely guarantees human rights, authorizes the exercise of public power, and serves as the legal underpinning of China's democratization. The constitution must be the highest law in the land, beyond violation by any individual, group, or political party.

2. Separation of Powers. We should construct a modern government in which the separation of legislative, judicial, and executive power is guaranteed. We need an Administrative Law that defines the scope of government responsibility and prevents abuse of administrative power. Government should be responsible to taxpayers. Division of power between provincial governments and the central government should adhere to the principle that central powers are only those specifically granted by the constitution and all other powers belong to the local governments.

3. Legislative Democracy. Members of legislative bodies at all levels should be chosen by direct election, and legislative democracy should observe just and impartial principles.

4. An Independent Judiciary. The rule of law must be above the interests of any particular political party and judges must be independent. We need to establish a constitutional supreme court and institute procedures for constitutional review. As soon as possible, we should abolish all of the Committees on Political and Legal Affairs that now allow Communist Party officials at every level to decide politically sensitive cases in advance and out of court. We should strictly forbid the use of public offices for private purposes.

5. Public Control of Public Servants. The military should be made answerable to the national government, not to a political party, and should be made more professional. Military personnel should swear allegiance to the constitution and remain nonpartisan. Political party organizations must be prohibited in the military. All public officials including police should serve as nonpartisans, and the current practice of favoring one political party in the hiring of public servants must end.

6. Guarantee of Human Rights. There must be strict guarantees of human rights and respect for human dignity. There should be a Human Rights Committee, responsible to the highest legislative body, that will prevent the government from abusing public power in violation of human rights. A democratic and constitutional China especially must guarantee the personal freedom of citizens. No one should suffer illegal arrest, detention, arraignment, interrogation, or punishment. The system of "Reeducation through Labor" must be abolished.

7. Election of Public Officials. There should be a comprehensive system of democratic elections based on "one person, one vote." The direct election of administrative heads at the levels of county, city, province, and nation should be systematically implemented. The rights to hold periodic free elections and to participate in them as a citizen are inalienable.

8. Rural–Urban Equality. The two-tier household registry system must be abolished. This system favors urban residents and harms rural residents. We should establish instead a system that gives every citizen the same constitutional rights and the same freedom to choose where to live.

9. Freedom to Form Groups. The right of citizens to form groups must be guaranteed. The current system for registering nongovernment groups, which requires a group to be "approved," should be replaced by a system in which a group simply registers itself. The formation of political parties should be governed by the constitution and the laws, which means that we must abolish the special privilege of one party to monopolize power and must guarantee principles of free and fair competition among political parties.

10. Freedom to Assemble. The constitution provides that peaceful assembly, demonstration, protest, and freedom of expression are fundamental rights of a citizen. The ruling party and the government must not be permitted to subject these to illegal interference or unconstitutional obstruction.

11. Freedom of Expression. We should make freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and academic freedom universal, thereby guaranteeing that citizens can be informed and can exercise their right of political supervision. These freedoms should be upheld by a Press Law that abolishes political restrictions on the press. The provision in the current Criminal Law that refers to "the crime of incitement to subvert state power" must be abolished. We should end the practice of viewing words as crimes.

12. Freedom of Religion. We must guarantee freedom of religion and belief, and institute a separation of religion and state. There must be no governmental interference in peaceful religious activities. We should abolish any laws, regulations, or local rules that limit or suppress the religious freedom of citizens. We should abolish the current system that requires religious groups (and their places of worship) to get official approval in advance and substitute for it a system in which registry is optional and, for those who choose to register, automatic.

13. Civic Education. In our schools we should abolish political curriculums and examinations that are designed to indoctrinate students in state ideology and to instill support for the rule of one party. We should replace them with civic education that advances universal values and citizens' rights, fosters civic consciousness, and promotes civic virtues that serve society.

14. Protection of Private Property. We should establish and protect the right to private property and promote an economic system of free and fair markets. We should do away with government monopolies in commerce and industry and guarantee the freedom to start new enterprises. We should establish a Committee on State-Owned Property, reporting to the national legislature, that will monitor the transfer of state-owned enterprises to private ownership in a fair, competitive, and orderly manner. We should institute a land reform that promotes private ownership of land, guarantees the right to buy and sell land, and allows the true value of private property to be adequately reflected in the market.

15. Financial and Tax Reform. We should establish a democratically regulated and accountable system of public finance that ensures the protection of taxpayer rights and that operates through legal procedures. We need a system by which public revenues that belong to a certain level of government—central, provincial, county or local—are controlled at that level. We need major tax reform that will abolish any unfair taxes, simplify the tax system, and spread the tax burden fairly. Government officials should not be able to raise taxes, or institute new ones, without public deliberation and the approval of a democratic assembly. We should reform the ownership system in order to encourage competition among a wider variety of market participants.

16. Social Security. We should establish a fair and adequate social security system that covers all citizens and ensures basic access to education, health care, retirement security, and employment.

17. Protection of the Environment. We need to protect the natural environment and to promote development in a way that is sustainable and responsible to our descendants and to the rest of humanity. This means insisting that the state and its officials at all levels not only do what they must do to achieve these goals, but also accept the supervision and participation of nongovernmental organizations.

18. A Federated Republic. A democratic China should seek to act as a responsible major power contributing toward peace and development in the Asian Pacific region by approaching others in a spirit of equality and fairness. In Hong Kong and Macao, we should support the freedoms that already exist. With respect to Taiwan, we should declare our commitment to the principles of freedom and democracy and then, negotiating as equals and ready to compromise, seek a formula for peaceful unification. We should approach disputes in the national-minority areas of China with an open mind, seeking ways to find a workable framework within which all ethnic and religious groups can flourish. We should aim ultimately at a federation of democratic communities of China.

19. Truth in Reconciliation. We should restore the reputations of all people, including their family members, who suffered political stigma in the political campaigns of the past or who have been labeled as criminals because of their thought, speech, or faith. The state should pay reparations to these people. All political prisoners and prisoners of conscience must be released. There should be a Truth Investigation Commission charged with finding the facts about past injustices and atrocities, determining responsibility for them, upholding justice, and, on these bases, seeking social reconciliation.

China, as a major nation of the world, as one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, and as a member of the UN Council on Human Rights, should be contributing to peace for humankind and progress toward human rights. Unfortunately, we stand today as the only country among the major nations that remains mired in authoritarian politics. Our political system continues to produce human rights disasters and social crises, thereby not only constricting China's own development but also limiting the progress of all of human civilization. This must change, truly it must. The democratization of Chinese politics can be put off no longer.

Accordingly, we dare to put civic spirit into practice by announcing Charter 08. We hope that our fellow citizens who feel a similar sense of crisis, responsibility, and mission, whether they are inside the government or not, and regardless of their social status, will set aside small differences to embrace the broad goals of this citizens' movement. Together we can work for major changes in Chinese society and for the rapid establishment of a free, democratic, and constitutional country. We can bring to reality the goals and ideals that our people have incessantly been seeking for more than a hundred years, and can bring a brilliant new chapter to Chinese civilization.

The planning and drafting of Charter 08 began in the late spring of 2008, but Chinese authorities were apparently unaware of it or unconcerned by it until several days before it was announced on December 10. On December 6, Wen Kejian, a writer who signed the charter, was detained in the city of Hangzhou in eastern China and questioned for about an hour. Police told Wen that Charter 08 was "different" from earlier dissident statements, and "a fairly grave matter." They said there would be a coordinated investigation in all cities and provinces to "root out the organizers," and they advised Wen to remove his name from the charter. Wen declined, telling the authorities that he saw the charter as a fundamental turning point in history.

Meanwhile, on December 8, in Shenzhen in the far south of China, police called on Zhao Dagong, a writer and signer of the charter, for a "chat." They told Zhao that the central authorities were concerned about the charter and asked if he was the organizer in the Shenzhen area.

Later on December 8, at 11 PM in Beijing, about twenty police entered the home of Zhang Zuhua, one of the charter's main drafters. A few of the police took Zhang with them to the local police station while the rest stayed and, as Zhang's wife watched, searched the home and confiscated books, notebooks, Zhang's passport, all four of the family's computers, and all of their cash and credit cards. (Later Zhang learned that his family's bank accounts, including those of both his and his wife's parents, had been emptied.) Meanwhile, at the police station, Zhang was detained for twelve hours, where he was questioned in detail about Charter 08 and the group Chinese Human Rights Defenders in which he is active.

It was also late on December 8 that another of the charter's signers, the literary critic and prominent dissident Liu Xiaobo, was taken away by police. His telephone in Beijing went unanswered, as did e-mail and Skype messages sent to him. As of the present writing, he's believed to be in police custody, although the details of his detention are not known.

On the morning of December 9, Beijing lawyer Pu Zhiqiang was called in for a police "chat," and in the evening the physicist and philosopher Jiang Qisheng was called in as well. Both had signed the charter and were friends of the drafters. On December 10—the day the charter was formally announced—the Hangzhou police returned to the home of Wen Kejian, the writer they had questioned four days earlier. This time they were more threatening. They told Wen he would face severe punishment if he wrote about the charter or about Liu Xiaobo's detention. "Do you want three years in prison?" they asked. "Or four?"

On December 11 the journalist Gao Yu and the writer Liu Di, both well-known in Beijing, were interrogated about their signing of the Charter. The rights lawyer, Teng Biao, was approached by the police but declined, on principle, to meet with them. On December 12 and 13 there were reports of interrogations in many provinces—Shaanxi, Hunan, Zhejiang, Fujian, Guangdong, and others—of people who had seen the charter on the Internet, found that they agreed with it, and signed. With these people the police focused on two questions: "How did you get involved?" and "What do you know about the drafters and organizers?"

The Chinese authorities seem unaware of the irony of their actions. Their efforts to quash Charter 08 only serve to underscore China's failure to uphold the very principles that the charter advances. The charter calls for "free expression" but the regime says, by its actions, that it has once again denied such expression. The charter calls for freedom to form groups, but the nationwide police actions that have accompanied the charter's release have specifically aimed at blocking the formation of a group. The charter says "we should end the practice of viewing words as crimes," and the regime says (literally, to Wen Kejian) "we can send you to prison for these words." The charter calls for the rule of law and the regime sends police in the middle of the night to act outside the law; the charter says "police should serve as nonpartisans," and here the police are plainly partisan.

Charter 08 is signed only by citizens of the People's Republic of China who are living inside China. But Chinese living outside China are signing a letter of strong support for the charter. The eminent historian Yu Ying-shih, the astrophysicist Fang Lizhi, writers Ha Jin and Zheng Yi, and more than 160 others have so far signed.

On December 12, the Dalai Lama issued his own letter in support of the charter, writing that "a harmonious society can only come into being when there is trust among the people, freedom from fear, freedom of expression, rule of law, justice, and equality." He called on the Chinese government to release prisoners "who have been detained for exercising their freedom of expression."

—Perry Link, December 18, 2008
          Little Jet Set: Stuff for Traveling Kids   
There are a gazillion of travel websites out there for various destinations and all types of travelers, but being a mom of two little travelers, I’m glad to have stumbled into the Little Jet Set, an online shop for toys, gadgets, clothing and other gear for little jetsetters. According to their founders: Based on our own travel experiences and extensive research, we are certain that the items we offer are the best in each of their respective categories. We spend considerable time carefully selecting thoughtfully designed and well constructed products that appeal to various ages and interests and that respond [...]

Post from: Let's Visit Asia

          Facebook Announces Goal to Take Role of Church   


Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg just rightly identified a major problem with the Church today: people aren't going. And instead of wanting to reverse that, he wants to capitalize on it. At Facebook's first summit focusing solely on building communities, Zuckerberg said: 

"It's so striking that for decades, membership in all kinds of groups has declined as much as one-quarter," Zuckerberg said, as LifeSiteNews reports. "That's a lot of people who now need to find a sense of purpose and support somewhere else."

Understanding the human capital of faith-based groups, Zuckerberg told the group of community leaders: "People who go to church are more likely to volunteer and give to charity, not just because they're religious but because they're part of a community."


Zuckerberg shared his huge goal with the leaders: he wants to take the current number of people, which is 100 million, involved in a "meaningful community" (one that gives a sense of purpose) to one billion. In fact, he said, "We're going to change Facebook's whole mission to take this on." 

"In the next generation, our greatest opportunities and challenges we can only take on together,” Zuckerberg said, “ending poverty, curing disease, stopping climate change, spreading freedom and tolerance, stopping terrorism."

"A church doesn't just come together,” said Zuckerberg. “It has a pastor who cares for the well-being of their congregation, makes sure they have food and shelter. A little league team has a coach who motivates the kids and helps them hit better. Leaders set the culture, inspire us, give us a safety net, and look out for us."

Zuckerberg is understanding that the current growing religion of this generation are the causes he listed above: social issues like poverty, the environment, and tolerance. As a non-Christian, you can't really fault him for identifying the growing trend away from church and shrewdly wanting to fill the void.

But Zuckerberg's remarks and revamped mission statement should be a wakeup call to the Church. We need to find a way to revitalize our community and our faith. Do you agree? Share your thoughts in the Comments! Thank you!

This addition to our e-shop is a t-shirt masterminded by SHOWstudio founder Nick Knight and modelled by Kate Moss. The limited edition piece features wording that is visible only during flash photography, and was inspired by Knight's experiences watching friends pursued relentlessly by the paparazzi. 'It could be for any occasion when you need to speak your mind directly and powerfully,' he says.
          MACHINE-A Celebrates Ken Doll with Archive Exhibition and Martine Rose T-Shirt!   

To celebrate Barbie’s THE NEW CREW release of fifteen diverse Ken dolls, MACHINE-A’s founder and buying director, Stavros Karelis, has curated an archive exhibition of Ken dolls that will go on display at the independent concept store.

Hand selected by Karelis, the exhibition will include archive Ken dolls that pay tribute to the new range that offers over twenty different looks, three body types and four ethnicities Archive dolls will include the 1991 MC Hammer Ken, a 2009 Ken by Gareth Pugh, which features a miniature version of a patent leather coat from his A/W 09 menswear collection, as well as a 2011 Ken by Ambush among many more!

The exhibition will be displayed alongside an exclusive T-shirt by Martine Rose that celebrates Ken’s origin with the designer graphic featuring an archive image from 1968, reworked in her own inimitable style.

Head over to MACHINE-A from 7 July 2017 to see the retrospective exhibition!



          Comment on Will Corporate Greed Destroy Our Healthcare System? by Virginia Garcia   
Pharmacist Gets 9-Year Prison Term in Deadly Meningitis Outbreak: The injections were routine, often used to treat back pain. But, tainted with mold, the authorities have said, they instead sickened more than 700 people with fungal meningitis and other infections, eventually killing dozens. Mylan’s EpiPen Pricing Crossed Ethical Boundaries: Ass the CEO of the drug maker that sells the EpiPen allergy-reaction injector defended the company’s six-fold price increases before Congress last week, it’s appalling to see that Heather Bresch took no fault. The company’s price hikes on a life-saving drug is clearly unethical if we take a closer look. The fraud trial for Martin Shkreli, the founder of Founder of Turing Pharmaceuticals, started Monday. Before that happened, the “pharma bro” gained notoriety in 2015 for raising the price of Daraprim, a drug that helps AIDS patients, from $13.50 a tablet to $750. And the list goes on and on...
          Palmer Luckey donates to software that breaks Oculus exclusivity   
Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey has always railed against the idea of locking VR games to a single platform. Now, several months after leaving Facebook following controversy about his political donations to a pro-Trump group, Luckey is stepping back...
          Podcast from Just Plain Sense   
Karen Machin, one of the founder members of the ROLE network, spoke with Christine Burns, for the podcast Just Plain Sense. In this Podcast, Karen talks about stigma and discrimination and the link with hate crime. Christine Burns MBE is the Equality and Diversity Programme Manager at NHS Northwest. She is also a director of […]
          The head of one of San Francisco's most famous startup farms is no longer running his firm after being accused of sexual harassment   

Dave McClure

The founding partner of 500 Startups, Dave McClure, is no longer in charge of the startup incubator's day-to-day operations, after being accused of "inappropriate behavior with women," The New York Times reported.

In its story, the New York Times named one particular woman, Sarah Kunst, who told the paper McClure harassed her after she talked with him about a job at 500 Startups. McClure did not dispute the account, according to the Times.

“After being made aware of instances of Dave having inappropriate behavior with women in the tech community, we have been making changes internally,” 500 Startups told the Times. “He recognizes he has made mistakes and has been going through counseling to work on addressing changes in his previous unacceptable behavior.”

Christine Tsai, co-founder of 500 Startups, is now CEO. Tsai wrote in a statement published Friday that she took over the role a few months ago, a detail that the company had not previously announced. 

"Dave’s role has been limited to fulfilling his obligations to our investors as a General Partner. In addition, he’s been attending counseling to work on changing his perspectives and preventing his previous unacceptable behavior," Tsai wrote.

The website still listed Tsai as a managing partner and McClure as a general partner as of Friday afternoon.

McClure is a big name in the San Francisco startup world. His company, which provides funding to young companies and helps them get off the ground, has backed CreditKarma and Twilio, among other successful startups.

Many of the businesses that work with 500 Startups are early in their development, when the entrepreneurs that created them might be more desperate and eager for funding — and potentially more vulnerable to behavior that exploits an imbalanced power dynamic. 

The sidelining of McClure is only the latest example of how a growing awareness of gender inequality and sexual harassment in tech is shaking up the industry.  

Justin Caldbeck, a co-founding partner of Binary Capital, resigned last week following a similar report in The Information. Meanwhile, reports of poor treatment of women at Uber prompted an investigation that led to CEO Travis Kalanick's resignation, the departure of numerous other executives, and the firing of more than 20 employees.

The Times story also named Chris Sacca, the Shark Tank judge and recently retired venture capitalist. On Thursday, in a preemptive response to the article, he published a post on Medium called "I Have More Work To Do" in which he apologized and said that he had "personally contributed" to making the tech industry "inhospitable for women."

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Everything you need to know about Gal Gadot before she becomes the #1 action star in the world

          Relationship Companies vs. Product Companies   
This is a guest post by Tim Romero. Tim is a Tokyo-based entrepreneur, podcaster and author who has started four companies and led Japan market entry for others since coming to Japan more than 20 years ago. Tim hosts the Disrupting Japan podcast and is deeply involved in Japan’s startup community as an investor, founder
          Did Beyonce and Jay-Z Accidentally Reveal Their Twins' Names?   
Post by Maressa Brown.

Beyonce and Jay Z Solange's wedding

When their eldest daughter was born in January 2012, Beyonce and Jay-Z
attempted to trademark "Blue Ivy," and it looks like now that the power couple's twins have arrived, they may have hit up the United States Patent and Trademark Office again. And it's with this move that we may very well have a believable lead on the Carter twins' names!

Shonda Andrews of broke the extremely intriguing news that the babies' names may very well be ... drumroll, please ... Rumi Carter and Sir Carter.

More from CafeMom: 23 Throwback Pics That Show Beyonce's Rise From Teen to Style Queen

Check out the telling screenshot Andrews provided that seems to confirm the babies' monikers:

beyonce babies names US Patent search

Laura Wattenberg, founder of, feels that given the trademark drama surrounding Blue Ivy's name, Rumi and Sir may very well be IT.

"Either those are the names or Beyonce's purposely using the database to mess with us all!" Wattenberg tells CafeMom. "And I don't think you'd use the US trademark office to play a little joke on the public." 

If these are, indeed, the twins' names, Wattenberg feels like both are very much in line with two current baby naming trends. "Sir is right in keeping with one of the hottest, fastest-growing name styles among celebs and in America as a whole," she says. "That is what I call 'exalted names.' Royal or divine titles or names of gods that celebrate the baby." Other recent examples of this trend include Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick's son Reign, and, of course, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West's son Saint.

Meanwhile, Rumi echoes big sister's name in a way, Wattenberg notes. "From Blue Ivy, you'd be expecting another sort of compact name -- and Rumi, for instance, in terms of sound, fits with the hottest style in America: raindrop names," she explains. Raindrop names are "little, miniature names with a smooth sound."

More from CafeMom: 

Examples include super-popular boy names Noah and Liam and well-loved girl monikers Mia and Mila, Aria, and Luna (Chrissy Teigen and John Legend's daughter!). Wattenberg explains:

"Parents love these names that are totally smooth, no hard stops in them, no hard edges, and they are short but complete. They are not nicknames for anything, but they are tiny."

She suspects that Rumi may be, of course, a nod to the famous 13th-century Persian poet, but more believably, the Carters' potential choice may be linked to its Japanese meaning. "Some of Rumi's Japanese meanings include 'flowing like water' and 'beauty,'" Wattenberg says. 

All of that said, while we may assume Sir is the Carters' son and Rumi is their new daughter, we've yet to get official confirmation on the babies' gender(s). Guess we still won't know for sure 'til we get that official statement from the proud, oh-so-private parents ... 

          On Women’s Health, Post-Birth Control Syndrome, and Brain Injuries - Dr. Jolene Brighten - #415   
Dr. Jolene Brighten - licensed Functional Medicine Naturopathic Doctor, best-selling author, and mother - joins Dave to discuss some trending women’s health topics. From Post-Birth Control Syndrome and hormones, to “mommy brain”, to traumatic brain injuries, she and Dave break it all down in this dynamic conversation. Dr. Brighten - who specializes in women’s health, from fertility to postpartum care, adrenal and thyroid support, autoimmune conditions, and digestive disorders - is the founder of Rubus Health, where she thrives on navigating the space between conventional and alternative medicine.
          TrackInvent Finds a Natural New Home in the Creative Environment at Mindpark   

With so many innovative companies across industries that we meet at Mindpark, we like to take a moment to introduce some of them directly to our community. This time, we’ve spoken with Anders Wellgiven, founder of TrackInvent, an innovative product design company who has made headlines with their flagship product Albedo 100. TrackInvent: on a... Read more »

The post TrackInvent Finds a Natural New Home in the Creative Environment at Mindpark appeared first on Mindpark.

          Paris DJs Soundsystem - Wearplay LP#16 - The Highlife Express - Deep & Funky Africa 80's (T-shirt/Mix bundle, Paris DJs/Le T-shirt Français, 2017)   

Paris DJs Soundsystem - The Highlife Express - Deep and Funky Africa 80s

Hot on the heels of the first season of 15 episodes of Paris DJs & Le T-shirt Français "Wearplay" series, combining clothing, music and graphic design, we're already back with the first episode of the second season! While we won't be able to release a new episode every day of the week this time, we've tried our best to add a new wow factor to our concept. Paris DJs co-founder Loik cooked a hypnotic mix of deep & funky tunes from 1980s Africa, a perfect summer selection, destined to grow on you after repeated listening. Paris DJs' in-house sound engineer Grant Phabao then carefully mastered the mix, while poster artist Ben Hito draw an illustration inspired by the theme and music. Then Clément, the main man behind Le T-shirt Français, printed it on a cotton-brushed, made in France T-shirt of his own production. This mix is available as a free download in compressed MP3 format on Paris DJs' podcast (up above on this page), or as a high-quality audio file on Bandcamp, through a unique download code printed on the back of the Wearplay T-shirt.

Last week's heat wave had us think : when it's that hot, it's high time to get on the groovy train and catch the "Highlife Express"! Whether people call it simply Highlife or Frimpong style, with a pinch of Afrosynth, funky, digital and cosmic vibes (check the second part of the last song!), this is a highly addictive sound. Acting like a soul massage for the heart, it's purely designed to make you feel good. We're proud to share with you these good vibes, through a selection of 80's vinyl mainly from Ghana, supposed to take you on a deep and groovy ride...


Dans la foulée de la première saison de 15 épisodes de la série "Wearplay" de Paris DJs et Le T-shirt Français, combinant prêt-à-porter, musique et graphisme, nous sommes déjà de retour avec le premier épisode de la deuxième saison! Si nous ne publierons pas cette fois un nouvel épisode chaque jour de la semaine, nous avons essayé de trouver une nouvelle idée étonnante qui fonctionnerait avec notre concept. Loik, co-fondateur de Paris DJs, a préparé un mix hypnotique de morceaux deep & funky africains des années 80, une sélection parfaite pour l'été, dont vous découvrirez toutes les merveilles cachées à force d'écoutes répétées. Grant Phabao, l'ingénieur du son maison de Paris DJs a ensuite masterisé avec précaution le mix, tandis que l'affichiste Ben Hito dessinait de son côté un visuel inspiré par la thématique et la musique. Clément, le principal activiste derrière Le T-shirt Français, a ensuite imprimé ce visuel sur un T-shirt coton brossé, fabriqué en France, issu de sa propre production. Ce mix est disponible en téléchargement gratuit au format compressé MP3 à travers le podcast de Paris DJs (au début de ce billet), ou en fichier audio haute définition sur bandcamp, par le biais d'un code unique de téléchargement, imprimé au dos du T-shirt Wearplay.

Avec la canicule la semaine dernière, nous nous sommes dit : quand il fait aussi chaud que ça, il est grand temps de monter dans le "groovy train" et d'attraper le "Highlife Express"!
Quel que soit le nom que les gens lui donnent, tout simplement "Highlife", ou "Frimpong Style", avec une pincée de synthés afro, de vibes funky, digitales et cosmiques (écoutez la seconde partie de la dernière chanson de ce mix!), ce son est des plus addictifs. Agissant comme un massage spirituel pour le coeur, il est purement conçu pour votre bien-être. Nous sommes plutôt fiers de partager avec vous ces "good vibes", à travers une sélection de vinyles des années 80 (principalement du Ghana), qui devraient vous emmener dans un trip "deep & funky"...

Paris DJs Soundsystem - The Highlife Express - Deep and Funky Africa 80s
Paris DJs Soundsystem - The Highlife Express - Deep & Funky Africa 80's
(MP3 Podcast on 2017-06-30

Le fil RSS
[comment faire?/how to?]

Tracklisting :

01. The Diamond 3 - Downfall Of A Man
(from 'Pocket No Good' album, 1982 / EMI Nigeria)

02. Kyerematen Stars Band Of Ghana - Maye Opi Den
(from 'Odo Bra' album, 1987 / Jimaco Nigeria)

03. Ashanti Brothers International Band Of Ghana - Emere Nyiinna Nse
(from 'Osei Vasco' album, 1982 / Sounds Linacco Nigeria)

04. Captain Newman & Super 7 Band Of Ghana - After You Na Me
(from 'After You Na Me' album, 1988 / Ugoh And Company Nigeria)

05. Apollo International Band of Ghana - Taxi Driver
(from 'Taxi Driver ' album, 1984 / Cy Nigeria)

06. Nana Tuffour - Ye Wo Asaase
(from 'Ye Wo Asaase' album, 1985 / EMI Germany)

07. Ozzobia - Ndi Oma
(from 'Man No Good' album, 1986 / Nigerphone)

08. Atakora Manu - Bebo Me Nkomo
(from 'Afro Highlife' album, 1981 / Society Ivoirienne du Disque)

Total time : 60mn 13s

Credits :
Selected and mixed by Loik (
Mastered by Grant Phabao (
Artwork by Ben Hito (

Download MP3

Links :
Paris DJs : | bandcamp | facebook | pinterest | soundcloud | twitter | youtube
Ben Hito : official | discogs | facebook

          5 Wine Tips to Make Your Thanksgiving Perfect   

5 Wine Tips to Make Your Thanksgiving Perfect How to make Thanksgiving perfect with the perfect wine pairings, from the Founder of There’s a lot of details to manage during the holidays, but one you want to make absolutely sure you get right is the wine. Here are 5 rules to picking out the perfect ...

The post 5 Wine Tips to Make Your Thanksgiving Perfect appeared first on Moms with Girls.

          Top 3 office chairs for the BOSS inside you   
Being the Director or Founder of a company, you need an office chair that speaks your personality together with offering you the great combo of classiness and comfort. HOF has a wide range of high-end office chairs that are best for you. Read this blog to know more.
          Coach Betty: LIVE with Trathen Heckman sharing conscious choices for a sustainable world.   
GuestJoin Coach Betty as she interviews this amazing entrepreneur and visionary, Trathen Heckman, who lives, eats and breathes sustainability in Northern California. He is the founder of several non-profit organizations which help people make the right choices for health of individuals and communities. He is bound to inspire you with his down-to-earth literally approach to making our world a better place to live.
           Elon Musk's first tunnel outside SpaceX headquarters    
The SpaceX founder Elon Musk said his 'Godot' machine had begun building in the car park of the SpaceX building in LA which marks the start of his plans to build a transport network beneath the city.
          After Chris Sacca's Apology to Women Founders, The Internet Responds With Culture Tips That Can Help Any Company   
Look, listen, act.

          What's the Worst Thing That Ever Happened to You (and How Did You Learn From It)?   
One co-founder and CEO explains how he rebounded from rock bottom.

          Phuket Banyan Tree Opens in Singapore at Marina Bay Sands Posted By : Rebecca JK   
Phuket, Thailand: Phuket's award winning Banyan Tree Spa has opened its first branch in Singapore, on the 55th floor of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel. Although Banyan Tree Holdings is a Singaporean company headed by founder and chairman, Ho Kwon Ping, this is the firm's first venture on home soil.
          SideOneDummy Co-Founder Joe Sib On Doing Stand-Up, Family, ‘Nowhere Near The Top,’ & More   

A true rarity in the entertainment business, Joe Sib has been a notable singer, a stand-up comedian, a radio host, and a record label owner. Arguably, Sib first appeared on people’s radars as the frontman of the band Wax, which had a popular Spike Jonze-directed music video and wound up on a bunch of soundtracks in the mid-1990s. After Wax broke up, Sib formed 22 Jacks, which would feature future and former members of the Foo Fighters, Weezer, Face To Face, and the Breeders at various points. Around the launch of 22 Jacks, Sib co-founded the record label SideOneDummy Records with bandmate Bill Armstrong, helping to launch the careers of Flogging Molly, the Gaslight Anthem, Gogol Bordello, and Bedouin Soundclash. Somehow, Sib also found time to work as a radio host (e.g. The Basement on Dash Radio, Complete Control Radio on Los Angeles’ 98.7 FM) and a touring stand-up comic.

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          Nikki Sixx To Join ‘American Idol’ Reboot As A Judge? What A Motley Crew   

Nikki Sixx is in talks for American iIol reboot

Nikki Sixx is reportedly in serious talks for a spot on the judges’ panel for ABC’s upcoming American Idol reboot. If he signs on to the show, the Motley Crue co-founder and bassist would join the motliest of Idol crews yet, with pop superstar Katy Perry and R&B legend Lionel Richie as the other two judges eyed by producers of the rebooted Fox singing competition. According to TMZ, Sixx will get slightly less than Richie’s reported salary of $3 to $5 million. Perry has already inked a deal for an unheard of $25 million.

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          How to Honeymoon in Your Married Name   

Guest Blogger, Cecile Mazuet, founder of NameSwitch explains how to honeymoon in your married name in this guide to applying for a post-dated passport, with a special offer at the end. If you’re dreaming of jetting off to sandy shores with your sparkling new ring, husband and matching passports then this guide will tell you how […]

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          How to Meaningfully Use Your Mornings: Daily Rituals of Successful Creatives   

Whether you're a morning person or not, facts show if you want to have a productive day, what you do to start it off truly matters. We've certainly seen article after article dispel the secrets for those in the professional world about how to start your morning, but how specifically do successful designers and creative professionals—our peers—prefer to use their earliest hours? 

This exploration, for one, is about finding the best ways to be productive, which without question begins with an intentionally planned morning, but the other curiosity falls into maintaining a proper work-life balance. With many of us work 9-to-5 jobs that easily bleed into the later hours depending on our workloads, mornings are an especially valuable yet overlooked time to enjoy life and take the time to do things we all simply enjoy doing. 

To get some perspective, we asked 12 different designers and leaders how they start off their mornings right:

Tina Roth Eisenberg

Founder of Creative Mornings, Tattly, and Friends Work Here (New York)

When exactly do you wake up?

I am an early bird and get up between 4 and 4:30 am. 

What are the regular activities you get up to in the morning?

I wake up and the first thing I do is drink a giant glass of water. I stretch for about 15 minutes while trying to resist to grab my phone and look at Instagram and Twitter. Around 5 am, I make myself a coffee and sit down at my computer to do either deep thinking/writing work or to find items to post on my blog. Around 6am is when I start the morning tornado also known as waking up the kids and getting everyone fed and ready to leave for school. At 8:15 am I arrive at the office and enjoy 45 minutes of alone time before the office starts buzzing. 

Why are these rituals important for you?

The quiet alone time in the morning grounds me for the day. I notice when I get up late and rush out the door. 

Any advice you have for people trying to have meaningful mornings that help them get into their element for the coming day?

To me, it's all about not rushing and time to think and stretch. And, most importantly, not instantly jumping on my phone or computer. Which, I admit, I sometimes fail to do."

Dan Mall

Creative Director and Founder of SuperFriendly (Philadelphia)

When do you wake up?

I'm an early riser. I usually get up at 5 am every morning. 

What advice would you give to people trying to have a productive, meaningful morning?

After reading Jocelyn Glei's Unsubscribe, I start every morning with 'mission work' before doing any client work or checking email or social media. Mission work means work that advances your purpose in the world. If you do that first thing in the morning, even if you get nothing else done for the rest of the day, you're good.

(I also wrote up some thoughts about the rest of my calendar approach here).

Joseph Guerra & Sina Sohrab

Founders, Visibility (New York)

Sohrab (left) & Guerra (right)

When do you wake up?

Sina: I wake up around 8:30. I've never been a morning person, so for me it always feels rushed; like there's never enough time. 

Joseph: Similar to Sina, I wake up a tad later but I make sure I'm in the studio by 9:30 in the morning. I love sleep and prioritize it as a necessity for a productive work day. In the morning I prefer quiet while my brain wakes up.

What are the regular activities you get up to in the morning and why are they important to you?

Sina: I find that the most meaningful part of my morning is in transit, on the way into the office. This time alone gives me....

Read the full article including morning ritual insights from designers at Smart Design, frog design, Ladies & Gentlemen Studio and more on the Coroflot blog

          Hand Tool School #36: How to Fix Gaps in Your Dovetails    

From time to time, it happens: You're cutting dovetail joints you either mis-measure or chop to the wrong line, and they come out looking like Swiss cheese.

Well, don't sweat it, because as I'm about to show you, patching them is easy and invisible. In this video I'll show you how to get perfect fitting dovetails even if you can't saw and wound up with gaps you can drive a truck through.


This "Hand Tool School" series is provided courtesy of Shannon Rogers, a/k/a The Renaissance Woodworker. Rogers is founder of The Hand Tool School, which provides members with an online apprenticeship that teaches them how to use hand tools and to build furniture with traditional methods.

          Top 10 environmentally friendly products   
Top 10 environmentally friendly products

1. Most Eco Friendly Toilet in the World

Saniflo Sanicompact toilet was awarded a 6 Star Wels Rating making it the most environmentally friendly toilet currently on the market today.  It has been praised for it’s amazing economical water consumption.

This particular toilet is capable of using 1.8 litres of water per dual flush compared to a standard toilet which uses 4 litres per 6 litres of dual flush.

The toilet itself does not have a cistern to flush itself so it is a great choice where space is at a premium.

 cross section image of Saniflo eco toilet

The system is really easy to install as it comes as one unit.  There is no cutting into wooden floor boards, having to cut through concrete blocks or digging up the ground to get to the sewer pipes.

The Sanicompact toilet uses macerator technology which means it uses a pumping system that reduces solids into small pieces and then forces the liquid and small pieces through a small diameter one way pipe.  The pipe includes a non return valve that ensures any macerated waste from returning back to the system.

The toilet is mounted to the floor using a 40mm pipe, you can also connect your basin to an inlet at the rear of the unit which means you only need one product to create a second toilet anywhere in the home for a fraction of the cost.

You get to choose between 1.8 Litre or 3 litre flush so in other words the most environmentally toilet currently available on the market.

Learn more about it here

 2.Worms farms 


In the last few years worm farms have picked up in popularity as a home composting solution.

A worm farm can help minimise food waste by transforming it into liquid fertiliser.  The worms eat all the organic food waste and expel nutrient rich matter and worm castings which are organic material that has been previously digested by worms.

person shows dirt and worms in his hand for eco worm far,

Worm liquid can be used to completely replace your normal fertiliser. This liquid requires dilution with water before you can apply it to your garden and indoor plants.  Once the liquid is the colour of a mild tea it is ready to use on your plants.  This solution will not burn your plants at all.

Worm farms are relatively low maintenance once you have completed the initial set up process.

In order to thrive worms need a moist environment. You can create this using old newspaper and keeping it wet.  You will need to create a moist paper or hessian base layer and also a moist paper or hessian cover layer.

Organic food waste suitable for a worm farm

Most scraps can go into your worm farm including egg shells, coffee grinds and tea leaves.  Beware of too much acidic scraps such as citrus fruits and onions as the worms aren’t too keen on them so keep these scraps to a minimum - no more than few pieces is enough.

Other things to avoid include tough heavy garden clippings as it will take the worms ages to get through them  Believe it or not dog hairs and cauum ckleaner bags are ideal for your worm farm.

After setting up your worm farm you can expect to harvesting fertiliser from the bottom after approx. four or five months.


Close up picture of worm used in eco worm farm

Worms are very clean creatures.  They don’t have any diseases and their digestive system is capable of destroying pathogens.

An interesting fact: If everyone had a worm farm then our compostable waste would be reduced by 1 tonne per person per year.

Bunnings have a whole range of worm farm products available to get you started. Learn more here:


3. Rheem Air and Water


The Rheem air and water integrated EcoNet system is an Australian product and the first integrated system that is capable of handling your homes heating, cooling and water heating all in one.  

\\One of the great features of this products is the ease of changing temperature.  There is an easy to read and operate large digital screen which allows you to control everything via a touchscreen.


A Rheem Eco water heater


You can also set up, monitor and change everything via an app for your phone.  So if you are taking a holiday and you forgot to turn off your heater you can do so via an app on your phone whilst you lay on the beach.


3. Water Sprinkler System


Following on from the Australian water conservation theme we move onto a product that can help save outdoor water consumption.

Rachio allows you to have full control over the watering of your garden by using an app.


screen shot of Rachio app


One of the clever features is how the system utilises a network of thousands of local weather stations.   Once it checks whether or not it is raining it  automatically adjusts the settings accordingly.

The phone app is available for Android and ios and is also compatible with the majority of home connected devices such as Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, and Nest.

Another great feature is how you can customise your watering to suit your lawn type. For example by type of grass and plant, amount of sun exposure, angles of the landscape etc.

This allows you to optimise your outdoor watering to be as efficient as possible which is not available with traditional water sprinkler systems.

4.Lamps To Grow Plants In Windowless Spaces


More and more people are living in apartment buildings these days.  There are various benefits for living in apartments including less maintenance, financial benefits, shared amenities, proximity to shops and services, safer and better sense of community.


Clear eco lamp with plant


There are some drawbacks when it comes apartment living - often you won’t have your own outdoor space, possibly more noise and often a lack of sunlight which can make growing plants difficult.

Over 80% of all Australians reside in urban areas, they also spend 90% of their time indoors either at home or work.  NSW health has estimated that urban air pollution causes up to 2000 deaths per year in the Sydney metropolitan area alone.

Another surprising fact is indoor air pollution is between 2 to 10 times more higher than the outdoors.  Pollutants expelled from man made materials used in furniture, fixtures and electrical equipment can cause loss of concentration, headaches, sore, itchy red eyes. Indoor plants have been proven to have various health benefits some of which include  reducing stress and tiredness which in turn can lead to improved productivity.


A large lamp containing a house plant by Nui Studios


If you are not inclined to put in the effort required to having house plants or you simply do not have enough light to successfully grow indoor plants you may want to consider the Lamp Mygdal from Nui.

It utilises intelligent design that allows plants to flourish in rooms without windows.  The lamp allows a completely autonomous ecosystem which allows plants to photosynthesise in the harshest of environments.

Glass eco lamp with plant by Nui Studio

The clever design incorporates electrically conductive glass coating which creates an invisible connection between the power source and the LED.

Nui Studio prides itself on preserving and retaining long forgotten crafts these lamps are created with mouth blown and hand finished glass.

5. Spiky Shower Curtain


Being the driest continent on the planet Australia has understandably always had issues with water conservation.

There are a few things people can do at home to help the water conservation effort, for example using bore water for gardening,  water saving shower heads and storm rain water tanks.

Elisabeth Buecher has created a concept for the shower that might be able to prevent people taking longer than the recommended 4 minutes to shower.

It is a shower curtain that has a  series of inflatable spikes that stand to attention and force the person in the shower to get out as soon as the four minutes are up.

It uses a small air inflator which starts up using a sensor once your four minutes are up.

It is currently just a concept but may be available to the public who want a cheap novel way of reducing water consumption in their bathrooms.

Eco shower curtain saves water by using inflatable spikes to push you out of the shower

6. Tiles for growing mini gardens


Urban living has exploded in  recent years.  A problem of this growth has been a loss of green space and trees.  

Grey to Green tries to reduce some of the negative impact of this loss of greenery while combining the added benefits of recycling.

Grey to Green creates paving stones that have small spaces within them where you can grow plants and herbs.

Eco tiles  with holes to grow vegetation

They have four paving stone designs available ranging from one to eight holes to grow the plants and herbs from.


Close up of an eco green tile by Caroline Brahme

The could be used in backyards or integrated into our towns and cities as part of the normal urban landscape allowing the introduction of a greener and more natural urban environment without compromising on space.

The tiles were designed by Swedish designer Caroline Brahme who has other interesting designs you can learn about here.

7. Tiny Homes

The tiny homes movement refers to the social and architectural movement that encourages and promotes living in small houses.    There is a distinction between small and tiny.  Dwellings considered small are between 37m2 and 93m2.  To qualify as a tiny house the building should be less than 37m2.

Tiny eco house on wheels

Due to the space restrictions of smaller homes the design has to be clever and well thought out

The movement is gaining popularity as people are priced out of the traditional housing markets, more people are interested in simpler, more sustainable living.

It really started to take off due to the global financial crisis of 2007. As well as financial reasons other factors that seem to be fuelling this boom include environmental concerns and the desire for a freer, healthier lifestyle that allows for more outdoor leisure time.

In some parts of the world such as Europe the tiny house trend has had a positive impact on homeless people as they are used as shelters.  In 2005 following Hurricane Katrina a designer set up a initiative to re home people affected by the disaster using 28 m2 hurricane proof houses which went on to win awards.  These can be purchased in the U.S in kit form.


Inside an eco tiny house

Small and tiny homes have the advantage over their counterparts as being cheaper to build, cheaper heating repairs and maintenance.

Other benefits could also be that living in a smaller area allows for a much less cluttered lifestyle. With only the essentials required to live, the smaller space discourages hoarding.


kitchen and stairs of a tiny house

Small and tiny houses also appeal to those people who want a cheap holiday home or retirement house.

Here are some of the top  tiny house companies in Australia

8.Environmentally friendly and socially conscious toilet paper: Who Gives a Crap


Who Gives a Crap toilet paper was started when the three founders learnt that 2.4 billion people from around the worlds do not have access to a toilet, this means that diarrhoea related diseases cause sub saharan hospital beds to eb over half full and over 500 children undere th age of five die every day.


Who Gives a Crap does not use trees to produce the paper just 100% recycled paper fibres, sugar cane or bamboo. In  addition they do not have any dyes or added scents either.

The great thing about this company is that they donate 50% of all their profits to help build toilets where they are badly needed. This is a good enough reason on it’s own to  switch to this brand let alone the added environmental plus points.

Eco toilet paper Who Gives a Crap

9.Water Pebble

The Water Pebble is small, simple and effective.  You place it in your shower and it memorises your standard amount of water used.  After that it will indicate using a traffic light system if you are exceeding the water consumption during your shower.

The Water Pebble effectively trains you to spend less time in the shower.


10. RavenWindow

Raven windows can help with savings on ventilation, air-con and heating.  They do this by using a patented themochronic filter in the space between the double glazed glass of the window.  This allows for control the amount of heat and light you allow into your home.

Raven Windows claim you can save up to 30 % annually on your heating  and cooling costs.  They work a bit like transition glasses where they will automatically transition from clear to dark but they use heat to action the change, filtering out strong light but keeping your visibility in tact.

Eco double glazed windows that transition darker when sunny

          Author Jessica Harris Joins Renaissance House for July 4th Reading of Frederick Douglass Speech   

The public is invited to a celebration of diversity and human rights by participating in the Renaissance House: Retreat for Writers & Artists' 11th annual free dramatic reading of Frederick Douglass' powerful landmark speech "What Does the Fourth of July Mean to the Negro?" taking place on July 4 at 4:00pm on Martha's Vineyard historic Inkwell Beach in Oak Bluffs.

Readers of all ages are invited to help bring the words of Frederick Douglass to life. Each volunteer reader will recite different sections of the 10,000-plus word address Douglass wrote in 1852 in the midst of slavery. Although it has been over 150 years since Frederick Douglass delivered his Fourth of July speech at a convention in Rochester, New York, the message is especially resonate during this turbulent political era.

Volunteer readers include New Yorker Dr. Jessica B. Harris, a longtime Martha's Vineyard resident and acclaimed culinary historian, professor, journalist and author of 12 critically acclaimed cookbooks documenting the foods and food ways of the Africa Diaspora. "I usually do not celebrateJuly 4th. This year, though I feel it's important to make Frederick Douglass' eloquent words be heard through participating," said Harris, whose recent memoir "My Soul Looks Back" recounts longtime friendships with James Baldwin and Maya Angelou. "I'm arriving a week earlier that I usually do Just to be in that number on the beach."

Lifelong Martha's Vineyard summer resident and New Yorker, Abigail McGrath, the founder of Renaissance House, created this community reading to celebrate the continuing impact of Douglass, the first Black citizen in U.S. history to hold a high-ranking government office.

"There is just something about Frederick Douglass' words being carried out over the Atlantic waters where millions of Africans lost their lives during the Middle Passage," McGrath said. "These blue waters are the perfect natural backdrop for public open-air readings of the most powerful anti-slavery message of all time - the Frederick Douglass' 1852 Independence Day Speech."

The architects for the Frederick Douglass reading include Frederick Collins, a law professor at John Jay College, an historical expert on Douglass, a cultural advocate and resident of Oak Bluffs. The director-editor-producer is Makani Themba, Chief Strategist at Higher Ground Change Strategies based in Detroit, Michigan. A social justice innovator and pioneer in the field of change communications and narrative strategy, she has spent more than 20 years supporting organizations, coalitions and philanthropic institutions in developing high impact change initiatives. She condensed the speech and tailored it to fit the needs of those who participate.

Renaissance House is a writers retreat sponsored by the Helene Johnson and Dorothy West Foundation. West and her poet cousin Johnson (Mc Grath's mother) were writers during the Harlem Renaissance. McGrath's interracial marriage was the inspiration for West's best-selling novel The Wedding and television mini-series produced by Oprah Winfrey starring Halle Berry. During the 1960s, McGrath was also an Andy Warhol film actress in the 1960s. In 2000, Renaissance House was founded by McGrath, an author, playwright and filmmaker. It whose provides writers and other artists with a subsidized retreat away from life's responsibilities and the space in which to create new works of art. It is one of the few retreats designed for issue-oriented writers, writers of color and writers of social justice.

Readers are requested to arrive by 3:30pm. The reading begins at 4:00pm. For more on the Frederick Douglass reading on July 4, call Renaissance House at 917-747-0367 or email

          Ballet Hispanico to Perform at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival This July   

Ballet Hispánico will perform at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival at the Ted Shawn Theater, 358 George Carter Road, Becket, MA 01223, from July 26-30, 2017.

Ballet Hispanico brings captivating style, crisp technique, and charismatic bravado to the Ted Shawn Theatre.

Ballet Hispanico offers the thrilling diversity of Latino culture-a fusion of classical, Latin, and contemporary dance. The program features the Pillow-commissioned and flamenco-inspired Línea Recta by Colombian-Belgian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, set to Spanish guitar by Eric Vaarzon Morel. Other works include Eduardo Vilaro's Danzón, which features a contemporary take on the national dance of Cuba, and El Beso by award-winning Spanish choreographer Gustavo Ramírez Sansano.

Performances play Wednesday-Saturday at 8pm; Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday at 2pm. Tickets are $45-78 and are available at


Línea Recta (2016)
Choreography by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa

From one of today's most sought-after choreographers comes a powerful and resonant work that explores an intriguing aspect of flamenco dance: the conspicuous absence of physical partnering. While maintaining the integrity and hallmark passion of the genre, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa imagines an original and explosive movement language premised upon the theme of partnership and performed to live flamenco guitar by Eric Vaarzon Morel. Línea Recta came to fruition through Ballet Hispánico's Instituto Coreográfico, an innovative choreography lab program for Latino dance makers. Línea Rectais Annabelle Lopez Ochoa's third original work for Ballet Hispánico under Eduardo Vilaro; the Company previously commissioned and performed audience favorites Mad'moiselle (2010) and Sombrerísimo (2013). BalletHispánico also acquired and performed Lopez Ochoa's Before After (2002), Nube Blanco (2008) and Locked Up Laura (2009).

Danzón (2012)
Choreography by Eduardo Vilaro

Danzón has been called the official dance of Cuba. Having evolved from the Haitian contradance, its history is steeped in the fusion of cultures. But danzón is also used throughout Latin America as a term of celebration, a coming together of community and a way of maintaining identity. Fusing Afro-Cuban social dance movements with contemporary and classical dance forms, Eduardo Vilaro has taken this traditional and quintessentially Cuban dance form and reinvented it as a joyous celebration of music and movement. Mr. Vilaro is the Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer of Ballet Hispánico.

El Beso (2014)
Choreography by Gustavo Ramírez Sansano

Award-winning Spanish choreographer Gustavo Ramírez Sansano (a Dance Magazine "25 to Watch" pick) premiered his first commission for BalletHispanico in 2014. , a tongue-in-cheek look at the iconic nature of a kiss with original costumes by Venezuelan fashion designer Angel Sanchez.


ANNABELLE LOPEZ OCHOA (Choreographer) is a sought-after Belgo-Colombian choreographer that since 2003 has created works for more than 40 companies around the world such as Scapino Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, Djazzex, GenEva Ballet, Royal Ballet of Flanders, Gothenburg Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, BalletX, BJM-Danse Montreal, Luna Negra Dance Theater, Ballet National de Marseille, Saarbrucken Ballet, Jacoby & Pronk, Chemnitzer Ballet, Ballet Hispánico, Morphoses Wheeldon Company, Whim W'Him, IncolBallet de Colombia, Finnish National Ballet, Compania Nacional de Danza Madrid, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Scottish Ballet, The Washington Ballet, Ballet Nacional Dominicano, Ballet Saarbrucken, Augsburg Ballet, Ballet Austin, Atlanta Ballet, Grand Rapids Ballet, Ballet Moscow, BalletNacional de Cuba, West Australian Ballet, Danza Contemporanea de Cuba, Ballet Nacional Chileno, Ballet Staatstheater am Gartnerplatz Munchen, BalletManila, Daniil Simkin Intensio Project, Cincinnati Ballet, Silicon Valley Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, English National Ballet and New York City Ballet. In the fall of 2007 she was selected to participate with the prestigious New York Choreographic Institute. Dance Magazine named her work Cylindrical Shadows, performed by Pacific Northwest Ballet, as one of the highlights of 2012. Her full-length narrative ballet A Streetcar Named Desire has been awarded with 'Best Classical Choreography' by the Circle of Critics of the National Dance Award UK, the South Bank Sky Arts Awards for "Best New Production" and has been nominated for an Olivier Award 2012.

GUSTAVO RAMIREZ SANSANO (Choreographer) was Artistic Director of Luna Negra Dance Theater from 2009-2013, after directing proyectoTITOYAYA in Valencia, Spain for four years. Sansano has been the recipient of numerous awards for his choreography, including first prizes at the Ricard Moragas competition in Barcelona, the Dom Perignon choreographic competition in Hamburg, and at Las Artes Escénicas de la Comunidad Valenciana. He has been commissioned to create works for Compania Nacional de Danza, the Hamburg Ballet, TanzTheaterMünchen, Budapest Dance Theater, National Dance Company Wales, Norrdans, Gyori Ballet, Balletto dell'Esperia, BalletMet, IT dansa, Ballet Junior de Genève, and Nederlands Dans Theater, among others. As a dancer, Sansano performed works by Jacopo Godani, Hans Van Manen, Ji?í Kylián, Ohad Naharin, Johan Inger, Paul Lightfoot, Victor Ullate and many more, working for the BalletJoven de Alicante, Ballet Contemporaneo de Barcelona, Ballet de la Comunidad de Madrid, Nederlands Dans Theater II and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Gustavo was chosen by the magazine POR LA DANZA for its 15th anniversary as one of the 'Fifteen Choreographers to Watch.' Dance Magazine featured Luna Negra's artistic director, Gustavo Ramírez Sansano, in its annual '25 to Watch' list 2012, and was named 'Chicagoan of the Year in Arts & Entertainment' by the Chicago Tribune.

Eduardo Vilaro (Choreographer) joined Ballet Hispánico as Artistic Director in August 2009, becoming only the second person to head the company since it was founded in 1970. In 2015, Mr. Vilaro took on the additional role of Chief Executive Officer of Ballet Hispánico. He has been part of the Ballet Hispánico family since 1985 as a principal dancer and educator, after which he began a ten-year record of achievement as Founder and Artistic Director of Luna Negra Dance Theater in Chicago. Mr. Vilaro has infused Ballet Hispánico's legacy with a bold and eclectic brand of contemporary dance that reflects America's changing cultural landscape. Born in Cuba and raised in New York from the age of six, he is a frequent speaker on the merits of cultural diversity and dance education.

Mr. Vilaro's own choreography is devoted to capturing the spiritual, sensual and historical essence of the Latino cultures. He created over 20 ballets for Luna Negra and has received commissions from the Ravinia Festival, the Chicago Sinfonietta, the Grant Park Festival, the Lexington Ballet and the Chicago Symphony. In 2001, he was a recipient of a Ruth Page Award for choreography, and in 2003, he was honored for his choreographic work at Panama's II International Festival of Ballet. In 2016, he was inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame.

Jacob's Pillow, celebrating its 85th Festival in 2017, is a National Historic Landmark, recipient of the National Medal of Arts, and home to America's longest-running international dance festival. Each Festival includes more than 50 national and international dance companies and 350 free and ticketed performances, talks, tours, classes, exhibits, and events. The School at Jacob's Pillow, one of the most prestigious professional dance training centers in the U.S., encompasses the diverse disciplines of Ballet, Cultural Traditions, Contemporary, and Musical Theatre Dance, as well as an Intern Program in various disciplines of arts administration, design, video, and production. The Pillow's extensive Archives, open year-round to the public, chronicle more than a century of dance in photographs, programs, books, costumes, audiotapes, and videos. Notable artists who have created or premiered dances at the Pillow include choreographers Antony Tudor, Agnes De Mille, Alvin Ailey, Donald McKayle, Kevin Mckenzie, Twyla Tharp, Ralph Lemon, Susan Marshall, Trisha Brown, Ronald K. Brown, Wally Cardona, Andrea Miller, and Trey McIntyre; performed by artists such as Mikhail Baryshnikov, Carmen De Lavallade, Mark Morris, Dame Margot Fonteyn, Edward Villella, Rasta Thomas, and hundreds of others. On March 2, 2011, President Barack Obama honored Jacob's Pillow with a National Medal of Arts, the highest arts award given by the United States Government, making the Pillow the first dance presenting organization to receive this prestigious award. For more information, visit

          Juilliard Chair Joins Boston Conservatory at Berklee as Dean of Music   

Today, Boston Conservatory at Berklee announced Michael Shinn, D.M.A., as dean of music. The appointment will begin on August 15.

Shinn joins Boston Conservatory from the Juilliard School, where he is chair of keyboard studies and an instructor of piano, chamber music, piano pedagogy, keyboard skills, and analysis for performers. In addition, he serves on the piano faculty of Juilliard's Evening Division, and is a senior advisor for educational and artistic programs at Juilliard Global Ventures.

"We are delighted to welcome Michael to Boston Conservatory at Berklee," said Cathy Young, executive director of Boston Conservatory at Berklee. "His dynamic work as a performer, educator, and arts entrepreneur is both energizing and inspiring."

Berklee President Roger H. Brown echoed Young's welcome. "Michael is a vibrant and visionary addition to the Conservatory's leadership team. He is also a triathlete who will bring great energy and endurance to this vital task."

Shinn boasts an impressive portfolio as a performer, educator, arts advocate, and entrepreneur. In addition to his extensive work teaching and building online learning tools at Juilliard, Shinn is the cofounder and codirector of pianoSonoma, a unique music festival that brings together artists in residence and musicians of all backgrounds to collaborate and perform in Sonoma County. Since its launch in 2011, the festival has garnered international acclaim and expanded to include a vibrant young artist program, designed to engage and inspire the next generation of talented musicians. Shinn also enjoys an active performance career, performing regularly as a recital pianist and chamber musician throughout the U.S. and abroad.

At the Conservatory, Shinn will draw upon his previous work with online learning and course building, helping the school to incorporate more technology and entrepreneurship into its esteemed music programs.

"Michael has a track record of groundbreaking and high-quality work in music education," said Joe Bennett, vice president of academic affairs for Boston Conservatory at Berklee. "As chair of keyboard studies at Juilliard, and in his leadership of the institution's online program, Juilliard Open Classroom, Michael has been a tireless advocate for his colleagues and students. He joins us at a time when the Conservatory has a unique opportunity to leverage the advantages made possible by the recent merger with Berklee, and I know he will lead our Music Division on to ever-greater things in 2018 and beyond."

Shinn will oversee the Conservatory's Music Division, which is the largest of the school's three disciplines-dance, music, and theater. The division includes approximately 410 students (200 at the undergraduate level and 210 at the graduate level). Shinn is the first dean to be appointed to Boston Conservatory since the school merged with Berklee in 2016.

"Boston Conservatory at Berklee has such a long and rich tradition of artistic and educational excellence," Shinn said. "And it now sits atop a precipice of potential for innovation in the arts over the next 150 years. I am truly honored to be joining this revered institution as its next dean of music, and I sincerely look forward to working with the incredible faculty, students, and administration as we look to the future of performing arts education."

Shinn received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music from the Juilliard School, where he studied with Herbert Stessin and Jerome Lowenthal. He later completed a Doctor of Musical Arts at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

Berklee is the preeminent institute of contemporary music and the performing arts, offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs at its campuses in Boston, Massachusetts and Valencia, Spain, and through its award-winning distance learning program, Berklee Online. Dedicated to nurturing the creative and career potential of the world's most inspired artists, Berklee's commitment to arts education is reflected in the work of its students, faculty, and alumni-hundreds of whom have been recognized with Grammy, Tony, Oscar, and Emmy awards.

At Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory at Berklee, students explore interdisciplinary approaches to music, dance, theater, film, business, healthcare, education, technology, and more. Our pioneering youth programs reach underserved classrooms throughout the U.S. and beyond. With students and alumni from more than 100 nations and educational partners across the world, we are forging new connections among art forms, musical traditions, and technologies to build a dynamic, diverse, and collaborative global arts community. Learn more at

          Avoiding Big Data Failure – Let the Data Genie out of the Bottle!   

Opening Keynote at Data Platforms 2017 with Qubole Co-Founder/CEO Ashish Thusoo All businesses are now in the data business. Whether ingesting interaction clickstream and transactional…

The post Avoiding Big Data Failure – Let the Data Genie out of the Bottle! appeared first on Qubole.

          Michael Tellinger on Ubuntu philosophy   
Zaradi Aktualnosti vsebine in bližnjega dogodka tokrat objavljamo gostujoči intervju v angleškem jeziku. Bil je narejen za Aktualno 2.0 s strani naše kolegice Andreje Cepuš. Predstavljamo vam izjemen koncept nove dobe, ki se kot virtualni virus širi iz Afrike na vse kontinente in je v mnogih državah že dobil tudi oprijemljive strukture. V razmislek in vpogled v nove možnosti!

Pozdrav, Violeta

Michael Tellinger is a scientist, explorer and internationally acclaimed author of numerous books, who has become an authority on the vanished civilisations of southern Africa and the origins of humankind. His research and discoveries of an advanced vanished civilisation in South Africa includes a diverse field of research and touches on human origins, spirituality, science & consciousness.

Michael’s work touches critical issues around the subject of Unity Consciousness. “The more we push the boundaries of science, the more we come to understand the universal mind – the creative source of all things in the multiverse and beyond. It seems that the knowledge we gain from quantum physics and space-time studies, brings us closer to understanding the true nature of reality, the meaning of the universe and our place in it as conscious beings.” He believes that quantum physics is a gift from the divine creator to allow humanity to find its way back to source – back to unity – from a deeply divided and manipulated species – not only on Earth but in the entire universe.

Photo: Michael Tellinger
Source: personal archive

Tellinger presents a model for a new social structure called CONTRIBUTIONISM – A World Without Money – based on the African philosophy of UBUNTU and proposes how we should move from a money-driven society to a society driven by people, their talents and their passion for life. Where everyone contributes their natural talents or acquired skills to the greatest benefit of all in their community – and money has no meaning.

He is also the founder of the UBUNTU LIBERATION MOVEMENT and the political party called UBUNTU Party, in South Africa – which contested the national elections in SA on the 7th May 2014.
You can find more about Michael Tellinger and his work here:
Since Michael is coming to Slovenia, Ljubljana on September (having the lecture in Cankarjev dom on September, 9th titled Megalithic Sites and Free Energy) is seemed like a nice opportunity to ask him a few questions before his arrival.
Povezava do celotnega intervjuja.

Kako lahko sodelujemo
Kje se lahko srečamo
  • Predstavitev knjige Sintropija, 12. september 2014, ob 18h, Atrij ZRC, Ljubljana
  • Naslednji BIN dogodek: BIN@SHEFFIELD, Velika Britanija, 3. - 5. november 2014

          Wayang ends in a Bazaar Twist   


Long Running Cumbrian Show ends in a ‘Bazaar’ Twist

The Musical Stonemason – A Cumbrian Wayang

A unique theatrical show which tells the true Cumbrian story of how the unique instruments known as ‘The Musical Stones of Skiddaw’ were built has now come to the end of its successful 11 month tour.

The show has been performed 9 times in 7 different towns and cities right across England, including the Royal Festival Hall in London, the Sage Music Centre in Gateshead and twice in Keswick itself; where the story of the show originates. The final show was performed on Sunday 6th July to some of the 1,000 visitors at the Cultural Bazaar at Trinity School, Carlisle.

This exciting community arts project was a creative collaboration between the musicians of the Egremont Community Gamelan led by Chris Stones, puppeteers led by artist and master puppeteer Ali McCaw, and writer David Napthine and Jamie Barnes, Curator of Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. The show is presented as a Wayang. Wayang is an ancient Indonesian dramatic art bringing together shadow play and music from the gamelan – the famous Indonesian percussion orchestra. The idea behind The Cumbrian Wayang was to create a unique art work drawing inspiration from Indonesian traditions but with a distinctly Cumbrian flavour. The result was a Wayang like no other, combining puppets that play instruments, colourful shadow imagery and the amazing Musical Stones of Skiddaw, all tied together by the magical sound of the gamelan.

The inspiration for the story ‘The Musical Stonemason’ comes from the famous Musical Stones of Skiddaw – an extraordinary instrument known technically as a lithophone which is made from a rare ‘hornfels’ rock and is housed in Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. The instrument creates a striking musical parallel for the gamelan, and boasts an intriguing history which formed the basis of the story. The peculiar resonant properties of the rocks from which the instrument is made are something of geological mystery. They were first discovered in 1785 by Peter Crosthwaite, founder of the first Keswick Museum, who incorporated them into his new cabinet of curiosities. It was Joseph Richardson though, 55 years later, who fully exploited the musical potential of the Skiddaw stones. A local stonemason and amateur musician, Richardson toiled away for 13 years to create the massive instrument now housed in Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. When Joseph finished the instrument in 1840, with his three sons they became something of a musical sensation, touring the country and playing three times for Queen Victoria! The story of the Wayang tells of Richardson’s obsession with the Skiddaw stones, and imagines a fictional meeting of Richardson and Crosthwaite somewhere on the slopes of Cumbria’s musical mountain. You can learn more about this true story and download free Musical Stones music at

The Musical Stonemason – A Cumbrian Wayang was very well received in all the venues it was performed. A total of 800 people have seen the show. It is now hoped the Wayang will be produced as a professionally-made film, which will incorporate filming outside on the side of the Skiddaw itself. This would mean that this unique part of Keswick’s heritage will be preserved forever. It is also hoped that this unique collaboration between Chris Stones - Egremont Community Gamelan/Soundware, Ali McCaw – Changeling Productions and Jamie Barnes - Keswick Museum and Art Gallery, will continue in a new education project for schools using the life and work of Peter Crosthwaite for inspiration.
          Famous Keswick Stones perform in London after 150-year break   

'The Musical Stonemason' – A Cumbrian Wayang

Keswick Museum and Art Gallery's popular stone xylophone – 'The Musical Stones of Skiddaw' have once more been delighting audiences with their unique sound, but this time in the capital city. The Musical Stones are the basis of a new theatrical show which was the result of a unique three-way collaboration. This exciting community arts project is a creative collaboration between the musicians of the Egremont Community Gamelan led by Chris Stones from Soundwave, puppeteers led by artist and master puppeteer Ali McCaw, writer David Napthine (Changeling Productions), and Jamie Barnes of the Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. Wayang is an ancient Indonesian dramatic art bringing together shadow play and music from the gamelan – the famous Indonesian percussion orchestra. The idea behind this Cumbrian Wayang was to create a unique art work drawing inspiration from Indonesian traditions but with a distinctly Cumbrian flavour. The result is a Wayang like no other, combining puppets that play instruments, colourful shadow imagery, amazing Musical Stones, and all tied together by the magical sound of the gamelan. The inspiration for the story 'The Musical Stonemason' comes from the famous Musical Stones of Skiddaw – an extraordinary instrument known technically as a lithophone and housed in Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. The instrument creates a striking musical parallel for the gamelan, and boasts an intriguing history which forms the basis of the story. The peculiar resonant properties of the rocks from which the instrument is made are something of geological mystery. They were first discovered in 1785 by Peter Crosthwaite, founder of the first museum in Keswick, who incorporated them into his cabinet of curiosities. It was Joseph Richardson (pictured above) however, 55 years later, who fully exploited the musical potential of the Skiddaw stones. A local stonemason and amateur musician, Richardson toiled away for 13 years to create the massive instrument now housed in Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. With his sons they became something of a musical sensation, touring the country and playing three times for Queen Victoria! The story of 'The Musical Stonemason' tells of Richardson's obsession with the Skiddaw stones, and imagines a fictional meeting of Richardson and Crosthwaite somewhere on the slopes of Cumbria's musical mountain. The 13-strong cast of 'The Musical Stonemason' went on tour with the show throughout September, beginning with a world premiere to a capacity crowd in Keswick Museum and Art Gallery, then on to the prestigious Royal Festival Hall in London's South Bank for two dates as part of an international Wayang Festival. The first leg of the tour then finished up with a performance in the futuristic Sage music centre in Gateshead. It is believed that the last time the Musical Stones of Skiddaw were played in London was in 1865 by the Richardson sons themselves. Jamie Barnes, the manager of Keswick Museum and Art Gallery said 'It was a great thrill to bring the Musical Stones down to London, knowing how much they had delighted audiences in the capital in the mid-nineteenth century'.

          Old Phones Build Nepal School   

Several local businesses are accepting donations of discarded cell phones for the benefit of a rural school in Nepal established by Laguna Beach-based R Star Foundation and its founder, Rosalind Russell. Laguna Beach collection sites include: Robert McGraw Architects, 305 N. Coast Highway; Laguna Pr...

The post Old Phones Build Nepal School appeared first on Laguna Beach Local News.

          Garden Party Benefits Goat Giving in Nepal   

Laguna Beach’s R Star founder Rosalind Russell invites friends and supporters to join her for a garden tea party Saturday, Sept. 29, from 2-4 p.m. at the home of Ileana, 17151 Greenleaf Lane, Huntington Beach, 92649. Entertainment will include a violinist and ballet dance performance, lunch, dessert...

The post Garden Party Benefits Goat Giving in Nepal appeared first on Laguna Beach Local News.

          Lavish show celebrates 70th anniversary of the fashion house that Christian Dior built   
The luxury brand Dior is celebrating its 70th anniversary with the largest ever exhibition of its haute couture clothes in the Muse des Arts Dcoratifs in Paris.

It includes more than 400 dresses made between 1947 and 2017 that were designed by the founder of the house, Christian Dior (1905-57), and his successors: Yves Saint Laurent (1936-2008), Marc Bohan (born 1926), Gianfranco Ferr (1944-2007), John Galliano (born 1960), Raf Simons (born 1968) and, most recently, Maria Grazia Chiuri (born 1964). Most of the works are from the Dior Hritage collection and have never been shown in Paris before, but the collection toured Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo and Seoul between 2013 and 2015 under the title Esprit Dior. The current shows co-curators are Florence Mller of the Denver Art Museum and Olivier Gabet, the director of the Muse des Arts Dcoratifs.

There is also a section on Dior as a collector of 18th-century antiques, Art Nouveau and works by his contemporaries, including Alberto Giacometti, Salvador Dal, Alexander Calder, Leonor Fini, Max Jacob, Jean Cocteau and Christian Brard. An idea of the value of the brand that Dior founded is given by the purchase in April by LVMH Mot Hennessy Louis Vuitton of Christian Dior Couture for 6.5bn.


The London-based art collector and benefactor Jill Ritblat describes her Dior experience

Lady Ritblat, why did you choose Dior for your wedding dress?

I became engaged to a Frenchman in March 1966 and as soon as it was announced, my mother and future mother-in-law, who dressed at all the couturiers, transported me to Paris to choose a dress. We went around the various couture houses and I found the clothes rather dull and dowdy. Then we came to Dior.

I had no idea what to expect as Dior himself had died, Saint Laurent was no longer there, and Marc Bohan was the chief designer. The salon was in the Avenue Montaigne, where it still is, although there was, of course, only couture at that time. The rooms were light-filled, pale grey and white, very quiet and serene. The vendeuse was somewhat forbidding in an austere French way.

I was shown the wedding dress of the spring-summer collection, a very simple but structured, translucent organza, A-line dress that stood away from a slim silk sheath. It had short sleeves, which, like the hem, were trimmed with hand-made organza roses. The short veil was attached to a juliet cap completely made up of the same but smaller roses. The shoes had a chisel toe and a delicate block heel, also in white organza, hand-made to order.

It was finished with a pair of short, white, kid gloves, but I did not have these made to measure as then everyone in London who got dressed up wore gloves, and I already had a pair. They were to be the something old, but Dior shortened them at the wrist and put a button on. The whole thing was modern, young, exquisite and different.

Bohan also designed my bridesmaids and pageboys outfits. The bridesmaids had smaller, belted versions of my dress, and the pageboys had red velvet knickerbockers, white socks, white silk shirts with floppy black silk bows at the neck, and black, silver-buckled, patent leather shoes.

My mother also organised me into a grey and white pinstriped tweed suit. The skirt was made in three tiers, with the pinstripes going in alternate directions. It hung from a silk bodice over which was a short, white, linen top with a col officier and large, amusing, white buttons and a short collarless jacket with the same fun button in grey.

It was deceptively simple, but most elaborately constructed, although feather light, fastened with a complicated series of hooks and poppers. It had been shown with a jaunty, red, straw boater, which was also ordered.

For my going away, I had a pink silk faille dress and coat with a matching juliet cap and pink silk shoes. I got changed into this outfit at the end of the reception, and when I came out of the lift into the hotel lobby everyone applauded.

Apart from being exquisite and original, all the outfits were fun. You did not choose the fabric but accepted the models as a work of art. They were perfection.

What was the fitting process like?

A chief fitter looked after the essayage. Each piece had its own expert, so a milliner came to fit the headdress, and their shoemaker the shoes. I had had marvellous ball gowns made in London for the many galas and dances that took place in the 1960s, but the first fitting at a Parisian couture house is like the final fitting anywhere else.

Dior insisted that the dress be delivered in person by the fitter, and so she brought it over to London and dressed me for the ceremony, tut-tutting as the hairdresser had made my chignon slightly too big for the juliet cap. But she redressed it and all was well. I remember that we put her up, not in the grand hotel where the reception was held, but in a small hotel near our house. Dior was visibly miffed.

All the outfits are now in the Victoria and Albert Museum except the wedding dress, as I insisted on cutting off the train so that I could wear it at parties. Great mistake.

Christian Dior, Couturier du Rve, Muse des Arts Dcoratifs, Paris, 5 July-7 January 2018
          David Smith’s sculptures get some space to breathe at Storm King   

In 1967, Ralph Ogden, the founder of the Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, New York, bought 13 sculptures by David Smith for the sculpture park. To mark the 50th anniversary of the purchase, Storm King is hosting the first exhibition to focus on Smiths use of the colour white.

The artist, who is known for his large steel sculptures, began working with white coral and shells during an eight-month trip to the Virgin Islands in 1932. Later, he painted large metal sculptures white, blurring positive and negative space, says Storm Kings director David Collens, who organised the show.

The show presents six large-scale works from 1962-63 outside with an indoor display of nine sculptures, eight paintings, 38 photographs and a digitised 6mm film. Five other works by Smith in the permanent collection are on display continuously outside. Storm King is an ideal venue for the show, in part because the setting is so similar to Smiths hillside property in Bolton Landing, New York, where he showed works outdoors. In New Windsor, the sculptures live and breathe and come alive with the natural light and trees, Collens says. No urban museum is going to do that.

David Smith: the White Sculptures, Storm King Art Center, New Windsor, until 12 November
          Towering triumph: on the scholarly resurrection of Joseph de Levis   
It is not often that the study of Renaissance bronzes can be described as intrepid. That, however, is exactly the word that comes to mind as one reads this pioneering and magisterial study by Charles Avery. Consider, for example, his account of the difficulties encountered by anyone wishing to look closely at the bells cast by Joseph de Levis (1552-1611/14) and his family firm in late 16th- and early 17th-century Verona. These, Avery notes, in many cases still hang in the relatively inaccessible campanili of remote country churches. To see them, the art historian must be agile enough to clamber up steep ladders, and determined enough to fight off pigeons, bats and their excrement, in order to gain access to the bell-chambers, where, even so, the frameworks for ringing often stymie proper examination.

In his pursuit of De Levis and his works, Avery has been doughty in another sense. He is, of course, one of the greatest authorities on Renaissance and Baroque sculpture, author of standard works on Giambologna and Bernini among other subjects. Here, however, he leaves the well-trodden high road of art historian to investigate a forgotten byway.

This book is the fruit of almost half a century of exploration. Averys first article on the subject dates from 1972, although his research began a few years earlier. At that point Joseph de Levis (also known as Giuseppe) was little more than a name.

That he was known at all was due to his practice of signing and often dating the products of his foundry. This is what makes his work, and that of the relations, a suitable topic for scholarly detective work. Those signatureseffectively trademarksmake it feasible to assemble a comprehensive catalogue of the output of the family form. With dogged patience, over the decades Avery has done just that. His book contains a catalogue raisonn, meticulously divided into absolutely certain works, those cautiously attributed on stylistic grounds, and rejected attributions. The picture that emerges from this and the text is of an operation, partly in and partly outside the conventional history of art.

The De Levis family business was originated by Josephs older brother, and continued by his sons and nephews after his death. As such, they made saleable objects such as bells, ink-stands, door knockers and mortars. Occasionally, Josephs projects took him into the territory of sculpture, as we normally think of it.

He collaborated with an artist named Angelo de Rossi on a couple of fine bronze statuettes of saints for the church of San Giorgio in Braida, Verona. In this case, it seems De Rossi made the models of the figures and De Levis cast them. On a few ocasions, however, De Levis seems to have stepped over the border from craftsman to artist, and devised small figurative statuettes and one portrait bust. The results are perfectly respectable late Renaissance bronzes in the Venetian mode, but that is not the reason why De Levis and company are worthy of this close attention.

It is the whole range of their outputand especially the luxurious but utilitarian objects they produced that makes De Levis and company such a fascinating case. Some of these required aesthetic invention; others were made by three-dimensional collage, putting together borrowed imagery or stock motifs. One basin, for example, has on its inside bottom surface an imitation of Drers engraving of a naked nymph being carried away by a sea monster. When the basin was filled with water, this would have been seen shimmering under the surface.

It is such objects in which Avery delights and makes the reader share his pleasure. (It is hard to resist a text that contains such exclamations as one must now address the intriguing question of door-knockers.) Among the finest products of the De Levis workshop were fire-dogs, ink-stands and the table bells that 16th-century aristocrats used to summon the servants. (Avery points out that Pope Leo X has one conveniently to hand in the portrait by Raphael.) A splendid ornamental ewer, now in the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, which made a world record price at auction, is another example.

Such things, and the job of the founder altogether, belong to a marginal zone outside the traditional heartland of fine art, which is just what makes them interesting. De Levis and his family were perhaps outsiders in Counter-Reformation Italy. The name might indicate the family was Jewishhighly unusual for an exponent of the visual arts in Italy at that date. The evidence, however, is conflicting; alternatively, they might have come from a village called Levo.

This and many other questions concerning De Levis, Avery emphasises, remain open. Nonetheless, this is a superbly detailed, comprehensively illustrated, urbanely enthusiastic summary of what we now know: a venture into art-historically unexplored territory.

Martin Gayford is the art critic at the Spectator. His publications include Michelangelo: His Epic Life and, most recently, A History of Pictures, co-authored with David Hockney

Joseph de Levis and Company: Renaissance Bronze-Founders in Verona

Charles Avery

I.B. Tauris, 224pp, 40 (hb)

          The Hiroshima Panels @ BU's Stone Gallery until Sunday   
Sara June in Peacock at Boston University's Stone Gallery

Last Thursday I went to see Lord and June perform their work Peacock at Boston University's Stone Gallery where six of Iri and Toshi Maruki's fifteen Hiroshima Panels (原爆の図) are currently on display as part of an exhibit titled A Call for Peace. The exhibit is only open through this coming Sunday, October 18th. I would encourage people to stop by if you have a chance. They are worth seeing in person.

Max Lord in Peacock at Boston University's Stone Gallery

Peacock uses Butoh, a Japanese performance art that "arose in 1959 through collaborations between its two key founders Hijikata Tatsumi and Ohno Kazuo". I don't think I've ever seen a Butoh performance before and didn't know that's what it was until my friend told me. Given that BU Today had called the piece an homage to the Marukis' work, I was expecting something eerie. From the description of the work on Lord and June's site: "The originator of Butoh, Tatsumi Hijikata, used Butoh-fu as a way to stimulate his dancers' movements and their relationship to space through the use of evocative text and imagery. As in the Hiroshima panels, Hijikata used grotesque form to translate states of unconsciousness into consciousness."

Along with the panels there are a few artifacts that survived the bombing (on loan from the Hiroshima Peace Museum Memorial Museum) as well as an exhibit from Mayors for Peace, an international organization founded in 1982 by Takeshi Araki, who was the mayor of Hiroshima at the time and also a hibakusha (survivor of the atomic bombings of Japan). The exhibit includes an overview of what happened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a brief history of nuclear weapons development, and an appeal to the public to call on our leaders for disarmament. This part of the exhibit is located in The Annex, a small room outside of the main gallery.

Artifacts that survived the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

It opens with an introduction from the current mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Kazumi Matsui and Tomihisa Taue. It's interesting to see mayors working as anti-nuclear weapons activists. This is a role that every mayor of Hiroshima and Nagasaki has undertaken since at least the 1960s. One of my American friends went to the Hiroshima Peace Museum Memorial Museum in the 1990s (I've never been) and he told me he was really struck by the protest letters that mayors of Hiroshima have been sending to countries around the world since 1968 every time there is a new nuclear test. These letters are printed on plates that are affixed to pillars. Some were so recent that the plates weren't ready yet so they had taped paper copies to the wall. It really drives home the point that the museum isn't just a warehouse of history but that we're at risk every day of repeating Hiroshima and Nagasaki every day.

If you can't make it to the gallery I have some photos of the exhibit and video from the performance, but seeing the photos won't have the same impact as going to the gallery in person. Please be warned that some of the photos and artwork from the Mayors of Peace exhibit are extremely graphic (they included dead bodies and the mutilated bodies of survivors). This is the stuff that's omitted from or glossed over in US history classes. Note that the article in BU Today lists different hours than are listed on the BU Art Galleries website which says that the Stone Gallery is open Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 5pm, except for Thursday when it is open until 8pm. I wasn't able to confirm their hours because they are closed on Mondays. The Stone Gallery is free and open to the public.

Petition X, 1955

Thanks to the attendee at the AARW/NAPAWF Kimono Wednesdays panel who mentioned the exhibit during the Q&A. I'm not aware of any publicity being done to the local Japanese and Japanese American communities so I might not have heard about it otherwise. (The exhibit was included in the October New England JACL newsletter.)

Update 10/14/15: I spoke with Joshua Buckno, the Managing Director of the BU Art Galleries today and found out that they did reach out to some local Japanese groups and academic departments as well as internal student groups and departments. It's not clear how much those organizations did to promote this exhibit and related events. It wouldn't surprise me if some found it too political, although it's also a busy time of year for anyone in academia.

I asked how A Call to Peace came to BU. Someone on BU's faculty knew the show was touring and suggested it. The BU Art Galleries try to make sure that their exhibitions have academic value for BU and contacted the Department of History of Art & Architecture and the Center for the Study of Asia who were both interested because of the historical and academic relevance.

  • Videos & photos from Peacock
  • Photos from A Call to Peace: The Hiroshima Panels and artifacts
  • Photos from A Call to Peace: Mayors for Peace exhibit

See also:

          Food Trips: Good Food and Good Vibes All Around at Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Talavera   
Composer, actor, painter, dreamer, visionary, and innovator, nothing can adequately describe Rod Ongpauco's multi-faceted and dynamic personality. Widely known as the inventor of the iconic Crispy Pata of Barrio Fiesta at the young age of 15 back in the sixties, Rod Ongpauco continues his passion for culinary innovation with his newest Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Talavera...

The third and newest location of Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Talavera is Rod Ongpauco's grandest vision of a foodie theme park, offering a wide range of sumptuous local dishes and warm service layered with distinct elements of design and entertainment for a unique dining experience. Read on and take a peek inside Rod Ongpauco's latest project, Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Talavera, Nueva Ecija...

"My idea of building a restaurant is to always come up with something first and different. Never copy, always innovate..." explained Rod Ongpauco as he showed us around the newest Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Talavera, Nueva Ecija. The expansive property is a visual feast, impressive in every detail. The park features unique attractions, including a submerged bridge where you walk among thousands of fish at Isdaan Floating Restaurant. Soak in the soothing waters and feed the fish to work up an appetite for Isdaan Floating Restaurant's equally impressive array of local dishes...

Throughout the property, elements of Asian design blend with the natural surroundings of Isdaan Floating Restaurant. It's a destination in itself, and it all comes from the visionary mind of Rod Ongpauco, the second generation of a noted culinary family behind such iconic names as Barrio Fiesta and Bakahan at Manukan. 

At the property's countless view decks, one can appreciate the immense scale of Isdaan Floating Restaurant, with numerous thatched roof huts dotting the park. Built on massive ponds, Isdaan Floating Restaurant integrates an experiential element to dining, a signature of Rod Ongpauco's chain of restaurants.  

And bring the kids. Simply pick a spot and feed the fish. It takes vision, and a certain "can-do" attitude to realize all this, and Rod Ongpauco simply fits the bill to a tee. "Ideas don't come by just thinking and sitting down it comes as a blessing, a gift from God. And when given that gift, don't sleep anymore, do it right away."  That, in a nutshell, pretty much sums up Rod Ongpauco, seizing each idea and taking it all the way.

Then, there's always the famous Tacsiyapo Wall, another trademark of Isdaan Floating Restaurant.  What better way to release some steam than smashing a few plates on a wall? It's attractions like these that make Isdaan Floating restaurant different. And special...

By late afternoon, grey skies loomed overhead followed by rains but it didn't dampen our appetite for a sumptuous dinner with Isdaan Floating Restaurant's signature dishes. In fact, the rains seemed to have made it even more special...

Rod Ongpauco and his lovely wife Boots (L) welcomed the group to one of many dining halls at Isdaan Floating Restaurant, as the staff prepared the evening's special dinner. And when you're with the man who invented crispy pata way back in the sixties at the age of 15 for Barrio Fiesta, you just know dinner is going to be awesome...

In true Rod Ongpauco style, we were entertained by a live musical performance from Isdaan Floating Restaurant's talented cooks and waiters. And just like his other popular dining concept, The Singing Cooks and Waiters, Atbp., it's just good vibes all around at Isdaan Floating Restaurant when Mrs. O. joins in the fun.

Our feast at Isdaan Floating Restaurant began with some light starters, like the Chicharon Bulaklak to get you in the proper groove. Rod Ongpauco personally selected the menu featuring some of their bestsellers, but Isdaan Floating Restaurant also offers set menus, including a Boodle Fight Menu ideal for large groups (for more on Isdaan Floating Island's Boodle Fight Set Menus, see my previous post, Food Trips: A Boodle Fight at Isdaan Floating Restaurant in Gerona).

First up, Isdaan's all-time favorite, the Boat Specials, with the Bangkang Sisig (P 735), grilled right by your tableside. The sizzling sound and the aroma whets your appetite, and it's time to feast...

The tender chunks of pork mask deliver a savory richness kicked up by the egg and tempered by the fresh chili for balanced notes. The side of grilled vegetables complete the dish. Isdaan's other Boat Specials include a Teppanyaki Boat (P 631), Seafood Teppanyaki Boat (P 844), Bangkang Lechon Kawali (P 589), Bangkang Kalderetang Baka (P 592), Bangkang Bakalitti (P 592), Bangkang Bicol Express (P 533), Bangkang Liempong Tinupig (P 533), and Bangkang Calamares (P 557), each served on a long boat-sized metal plate. If you want to super-size your Boat Special, opt for the Titanic Boat.

The Bangkang Calamares (P 557) with battered deep-fried squid is another tasty option at Isdaan. The calamares are grilled on the hot plate, while a special sauce is poured for that sizzling finish. Each of the Boat Specials are prepared by the staff beside your table before serving, adding to that theatrical vibe that Rod Ongpauco has mastered in all his dining concepts. 

The Mama Chit Special (P 898), named after the family matriarch and founder of Barrio Fiesta, includes all the fried specialties of Barrio Fiesta in one platter. Perfect for sharing, with all the dips and condiments for a family style feast at Isdaan.

Isdaan's Pinukpok na Hipon (P 539) is another must-try dish, with plump shrimps cooked in a bamboo container and delicately simmered in coconut milk, pumpkin, and vegetables. The fresh briny sweetness of the shrimps come through, followed by the creamy notes of the coconut and fragrant bamboo.

Craving for tempura? Isdaan's got that covered too with their Tempurang Bukid (P 491), succulent prawns coated in a light and crisp batter and deep-fried to golden brown perfection.

But it's the Tinupig that caught my attention. Isdaan's Lechon Tinupig Manok is one absolute must-try dish, with whole roasted chicken marinated and simmered in creamy coconut milk for hours, then delicately wrapped in banana leaves before grilling. The chicken is perfectly moist and juicy, imparting rich savory notes with every bite. The subtle sweet hint of the coconut milk and fragrant aroma of the banana leaf complete the dish. Isdaan is the first and only dining establishment serving this dish for another creative culinary innovation from master restaurateur Rod Ongpauco.

Rod Ongpauco never rested on his laurels after creating the iconic Crispy Pata of Barrio Fiesta, and his pioneering spirit continues with another winning concept, the Patang Tinupig (P 690).  Rod revisits the iconic crispy pata but instead of deep-frying it, simmers it in creamy coconut milk for hours until soft and tender, and wrapping it in banana leaves before grilling. The result? Fall-off-the-bone goodness with that melt-in-your-mouth texture taking pork love to a whole new level. The Lechon Tinupig Manok and Patang Tinupig are clearly worth the drive to Isdaan.

But there's more. From their Bakahan at Manukan chain of restaurants is the classic Sinabawang Bulalo sa Sariwang Kamatis with tender beef and bone marrow in a rich tomato broth. Cap your feast with some ice cream, and go for a second round of fish feeding...

At night, Isdaan Floating Restaurant takes on an ethereal glow, with the sights, sounds, and aroma of good food and good vibes permeating throughout the property. For Rod Ongpauco, this is just the latest in a series of creative culinary innovations, with many more yet to come. And that's why dining at Isdaan Floating Restaurant is always fun and exciting, you can always expect good food. And good vibes...

Isdaan Floating Restaurant is located at Santo Domingo, Talavera, Nueva Ecija.

Dude for Food is now on Facebook and Instagram, check out the FB Page and IG Feed for regular updates on good eats. Better yet, click "Like" and "Follow" and enjoy the ride...just look for the FB and IG widgets on the right sidebar.

          Comment on Beyond Capitalism – Albert Einstein, 1949 by 12barblueboy   
This article is from 2013. I don't think it was penned by a "Zionist." I grasp much of the physics but not all, and did not check all the references. In place of the authors name it just says "admin," but at the page bottom is: Administration ((( Wade D. House: Chairman/Co-Founder ))) ((( Joel D. Prentice: Treasurer/Co-Founder ))) Contact E-Mail: [].....>>>
          REPOST : PADRE PIO SAID THAT MARTIN LUTHER IS IN HELL AND CHRISTIANS WHO FOLLOW HIM WILL MEET THE SAME END- Fr.Stefano Manelli F.I, founder of the Franciscans of the Immaculate   

Image result for Photos mARTIN lUTHER WITH pOPE

JANUARY 28, 2013

Padre Pio said that Martin Luther is in Hell and Christians today who follow him will meet the same end.

Those who do not submit themself to the pope and the teachings of the Catholic Church are also going to Hell.

Father Stefano Manelli F.I founder of the Franciscans of the Immaculate writes that Martin Luther who called himself Pope Luther 1and condemned the pope of Rome, as going to Hell, was a great heretic.

Fr.Manelli in Il Settimanale di Padre Pio (Jan.20,2013 p.1) said that Christians today who follow Luther are also on the way to Hell.

Fr.Manelli in the Italian weekly , mentioned that Padre Pio said those Christians who believe they can speak directly with God are also going to Hell.

Luther believed he could speak directly with God. He  was precipitated into Hell said Padre Pio.

Fr.Stefano Manelli in his weekly column Il Pensiero di Padre Pio,Pianeta Padre Pio, wrote that  Padre Pio criticized those Christians who believe they can speak directly to God and receive instructions and do not have to submit to the authority of the pope.

This is also a dangerous road writes Fr.Manelli for Christians who believe they are in communion with God without his Vicar and the Catholic Church. They are mistaken and this is an illusion for them,as it is known, he writes, outside the church there is no salvation.

On this point, Padre Pio, with simple words, which were terrible, said that those who believe they can communicate with God directly, are on the way to Hell.

Luther's end was horrible and frightening, he writes, but this will also be the same history of many Christians and Catholics who believe in the teachings of Luther.They risk also going to Hell like Luther, for not listening to the pope.

We need to understand the words of Jesus, in which he delegated St.Peter and his successors the guarantee of a unique Catholic Faith in the Church.(Lk.22,32).This is the guarantee and confirmation given to the popes which is secure and infallible and no one will be lost to Hell who remains with the pope in the Catholic Church.

'Thou art Peter,' said Jesus, ' and upon this rock I will build my Church,and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it' (Mt.16,18).

Fr.Stefano Manelli, who personally knew the saint, said Padre Pio had kept a picture of the pope on his little working table..So always before him was the message,'After Jesus comes the Pope'.(Dopo Gesù viene il papa).

Even we , suggests Fr.Manelli, should quickly free ourself from everything which is far from the pope and not supporting the pope.Even we should value the motto of Padre Pio, 'After Jesus comes the pope'. -Lionel Andrades

          Aidan Kearney was briefly on record as founder of Turtleboy Sports in a later-redacted interview   

The folks at Turtleboy Sports, who value their anonymity, have long contended that Aidan Kearney does not run the blog, but rather the company that monetizes the website. That’s not what Kearney told Evan Lips at the New Boston Post, who wrote at length about Kearney’s troubles with Turtleboy Sports Facebook page suspensions. The Post, […]

The post Aidan Kearney was briefly on record as founder of Turtleboy Sports in a later-redacted interview appeared first on Worcester Mag.

          Portland Museum of Art to open new sculpture park   
PORTLAND — The Portland Museum of Art will celebrate the opening of the David E. Shaw and Family Sculpture Park in the Joan B. Burns Garden at 5:15 p.m. Friday, July 7, during First Friday Art Walk. Shaw, the founder of Idexx, endowed the park last year. According to a PMA press release, it is “a green […]
          Seaspan Extends CEO Employment Agreement Discussions   
HONG KONG, China, June 30, 2017/ PRNewswire/- Seaspan Corporation announced today that it is continuing its discussion of employment agreement modifications with Gerry Wang, its Chief Executive Officer, Co-Chairman and Co-Founder, and expects to conclude discussions prior to the end of July. Larry Simkins, a member of the Board of Directors and Executive...
          Statement: Hill Briefing to Discuss Rise of Hate Groups, Hate Crimes & Formulating a Response   


Media Advisory:


Contact: Jennifer Salan / 202-429-9210 


Hill Briefing to Discuss Rise of Hate Groups, Hate Crimes & Formulating a Response

[Washington, DC] The Arab American Institute will hold a briefing for congressional staff on the increase in hate groups and hate crimes on Tuesday, June 27 at 10AM.

The Southern Poverty Law Center found 867 incidents of hate in the first 10 days following the November election, including more than 300 where the target was Muslim or immigrant. The SPLC also found an increase in the number of hate groups in 2016, with 917 considered active, up from 892 in 2015.

Experts will address the scope of the problem and suggest policy options for stemming the tide of hate.


Michael German: Fellow, Brennan Center for Justice

A fellow with the Brennan Center for Justice’s Liberty and National Security Program, German previously served as the policy counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union and was as a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation for sixteen years, where he specialized in domestic terrorism and covert operations.

Nadia Aziz: Director, Stop Hate Project & Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law

As Program Manager of the Stop Hate Project, Aziz works to ensure individuals and organizations targeted by hate have the resources they need to combat it in their communities. Prior to joining the Lawyers’ Committee in 2017, Aziz worked at the AAI as Director of Government Relations. She has previously served as a legal fellow with America Votes and Compliance Manager of the 2012 Democratic National Convention Committee. 

Johnathan Smith: Legal Director, Muslim Advocates

Prior to joining Muslim Advocates Smith served as senior counsel to the Assistant Attorney General in the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, where he helped manage the department’s work on religious discrimination, LGBT rights, employment discrimination, housing discrimination, and appellate matters.  

Maya Berry: Executive Director, Arab American Institute

Currently steering the Institute's policy agenda as Executive Director, Berry also established AAI’s first Government Relations department in 1996. After building that department for five years, Berry joined House Minority Whip David Bonior as his Legislative Director where she developed policies on international relations, human rights, trade, and immigration. Berry is also the founder of MidAmr Group, a private consulting firm dedicated to enhancing US-Arab economic, political, and cultural cooperation.

WHAT: Hill briefing for congressional staff discussing the rise of hate groups, hate crimes and potential policy responses

WHEN: Tuesday, June 27, 10AM

WHERE: Longworth House Office Building (Room 1732)

RSVP: Please RSVP to as space is limited. 

# # #

Founded in 1985, the Arab American Institute (AAI) is a nonprofit organization committed to the civic and political empowerment of Americans of Arab descent.  AAI provides policy, research and public affairs services to support a broad range of community activities. For more information please visit

          William Craddick — Saudi Arabia’s March Towards Civil War   

Backgrounder. Important.

Dissident Media
Saudi Arabia’s March Towards Civil War
William Craddick, founder and editor-in-chief

          Interview: Benji Coetzee EmptyTrips CEO, Seedstars Finalist   
Interview: Benji Coetzee EmptyTrips CEO, Seedstars Finalist
In another eye-opening interview, IT News Africa spoke to Benji Coetzee, the CEO and Founder of innovative startup, EmptyTrips. EmptyTrips is a startup which is looking to usher in a new age of logistics. As many transporters and companies suffer from empty return legs and with shippers suffering from high costs to ship their goods [&hellip
          'Dreams on Wheels' tries to bring legal aid straight to undocumented immigrants in need   

When it comes to immigrant rights activism, some of the most important and consequential work hasn’t happened in D.C. or even state houses, but in an RV with a handful of attorneys. Since 2014, Santa Fe Dreamers Project has provided legal aid to immigrant clients via fixed locations and a roaming RV office, assisting immigrants with complicated forms, applying for DACA, answering legal questions, and helping others facing deportation. While an immigration attorney can cost up to $2,000, Santa Fe Dreamers Project charges only $150. It can mean the difference between staying or being ripped away from your home:

This catalyst for her mobile legal aid clinic came in 2006, before she was a lawyer. At that time [Sante Fe Dreamers Project founder Allegra] Love was a 24-year-old third grade public school teacher.

She was teaching a class of 20 children in a small immigrant town in the Santa Fe school district when U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducted a raid on her school. The next day, her class was reduced to just three.

“Kids just stopped going to school,” says Love.

Appalled at the politics in play within her classroom, Love decided she wanted to advocate for these families whom she had grown to respect and cherish during her brief teaching career.

“Why were we terrorizing these people?” she wondered. “They’re good people … They work hard.”

          T-cab Scania latest addition to fleet   

This bonneted Scania is the latest motor to join our fleet. This monster machine is fitted with a 100 TM crane which means that we are able to offer a unique lifting service due to the large cranes lifting capability. The Scania is driven by Matt Gregory, Company Founder, and carries out a range of work from lifting and moving heavy industrial machinery to 60ft long cabins. “It’s a delight to drive” says Matt, “and even better knowing that we are the only haulier in Suffolk that can offer such a unique service.” The vehicle has been so busy since it was acquired June 07 that it has yet to be re-sprayed into the striking company livery of yellow and red. “We hope to be able to get this done before the end of 08, it will really stand out then” says Matt MGT (Suffolk) Ltd provides professional transportation services of generators, tanks, vessels, industrial machinery, food production machinery, agricultural machinery, steel fabrications and much much more!

The post T-cab Scania latest addition to fleet appeared first on MGT Suffolk.

          Defender of Religious Freedom Sues Nonprofit Tracker GuideStar Over ‘Hate Group’ Labe   
On 06.29.17 11:51 AM posted by Rachel del Guidice A conservative organization dedicated to upholding religious liberty has sued the leading tracker of U.S. nonprofits for publicly listing it as a “hate group.” “It is dangerous to label organizations as hate groups when they’re not, [and] people have used that information to commit acts of violence.”—@MatStaver Liberty Counsel is taking GuideStar to court after the top source of information on charities and other nonprofits flagged it and other well-known, broadly supported conservative nonprofits as hate groups. “We want to stop the lies because this kind of reporting is defamatory, it’s reckless, and it’s dangerous,” Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, told The Daily Signal in an interview.
          THR 7/1/17: Trump Wins on Travel Ban   

The Senate Republicans’ plan to repeal and replace has stalled and appears to be pushed out past the 4th of July Weekend. All it took was a few Republican holdouts. Avid Roy, co-founder and president of the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity, and Tom Price, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, explained the...

The post THR 7/1/17: Trump Wins on Travel Ban appeared first on

          The Homestretch Screening (Community Cinema)   

wedupbs posted a photo:

The Homestretch Screening (Community Cinema)

WEDU PBS held a free screening of INDEPENDENT LENS: The Homestretch on April 9, 2015 at WEDU in the Berkman Family Broadcast Center. We were joined by Angela Thomas, School Social Worker at Hillsborough County Public Schools; Antonio Byrd, COO of the Tampa Hillsborough Homeless Initiative; Vicki Sokolik, Founder of Starting Right, Now; Melanie DeCampos, University of South Florida Student and former homeless teen; and moderator Ernest Hooper of the Tampa Bay Times. Attendeees watched the film and took the pledge to #EndYouthHomelessness.

          Vector Space Systems Gain $21 Million Funding to Build Cheaper Rockets   
While Elon Musk was starting his new venture SpaceX, he had asked experts of aviation field during his series of salons in Silicon Valley and around Los Angeles to suggest ideas regarding the new generation rocket. Most of those who made credible suggestions, related to the development of smaller, cheaper, and yet efficient rockets, which can take something into the orbit at a much lower price than the present cost of about $100 million. In the past few years, Space Technologies Corp. has indeed managed to reduce the launch prices drastically, although the size of the spaceships have not reduced as much as desired by some of the advisers. Equal Focus on Increasing Launch Efficiency Among those who made the suggestions and helped Space X get off the ground, have collaborated to ignite a start-up of themselves, called Vector Space Systems, which now has gained $21 million funding from some of the most prominent venture capitalists in the Silicon Valley, including Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Shasta Ventures. This funding is expected to go a long way in Vector Space Systems’ ambitious goals to make $1.5 million rockets that can carry small satellites into the orbit, and aspire to increase the efficiency to over 100 launches per year. Currently, the entire aerospace industry manage to launch so many spacecraft collectively. As per the co-founder and CEO of Vector Space Systems, the company has poured equal efforts onto fixing the launch problem as they did on building advanced rockets, something Elon Musk’s company ignored. As Jim Cantrell puts it, his company is trying to make the simplest of rockets, building them like sausages, and launching by the hundreds.  

Original Post Vector Space Systems Gain $21 Million Funding to Build Cheaper Rockets source Twease
          Power of noble gestures   
GOOGLE engineering director Alan Noble and co-founder and chief executive of Verb, Suzi Sosa, will be talking up the state at next week’s Social Capital conference in Adelaide.
Than you expect life is shorter love has a larger claim your love is profounder more foundational :- Doug.
          6 Technical Testing Skills that Aren’t Automation   
This is a guest posting by Jess Ingrassellino. Jess is a software engineer in New York. She has perused interests in music, writing, teaching, technology, art and philosophy. She is the founder of When testers hear the words “technical testing”, our minds immediately jump ...
          Islam boldly infiltrating America at alarming rate.    

A brand new, first-of-its-kind Muslim college at Berkeley, California, received its accreditation March 15, 2015 from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.   Zaytuna College has two co-founders.   One, Hamza Yusuf, states that this first Muslim college gives “our community its first accredited academic address in the U.S.  And we hope, God willing, that there will be more such Muslim colleges and universities to come.”

Most Americans know Islamic mosques are popping up all over the U.S., in big cities and in small rural towns.   Less know there are some 22 Islamic training camps (12 along the east coast and four in California).  I frequently fly between Israel and the U.S.   At security, men and women in Islamic headdresses perform security checks and handle baggage.   At a DC area mall, I observed the presence of almost as many Muslim mothers pushing baby strollers and trailed by their other children as there were women wearing traditional American garb.  Indeed, the Obama administration has instigated a massive, deliberate importation of Muslim refugees from Syria, Jordan and elsewhere.  This population is growing faster than most Americans care to admit.

In the old days, who would have cared how many nations or ideologies were seen, especially between Boston, New York and D.C.   I remember when the Hare Krishna converts seemed to be everywhere in D.C. as were women from India with their long dresses and forehead jewels, as an example.  But they didn’t fly airplanes into tall buildings or vow to kill all Americans who refused to convert to their religious beliefs.  What does a little Muslim college in Berkeley, California, have to do with a rapidly expanding Muslim presence in the United States? Believe me, just as all Germans were not Hitlers; all Muslims are not terrorists but a rose by any other name is still a rose.  Whether benign or guilty, the Quran is still the Quran and Sharia Law is Sharia Law.

Look at it this way.  If you see bees swarming in your attic, you instinctively know each bee is not dangerous.  In fact, the entire beehive, in the right place for the right purpose is beneficial.  Think honey.  But, what if your attic had two types of bees that had made their nests and were swarming and you couldn’t tell the difference between the two.  One was deadly and the other was not.  Now you have a dilemma that must be carefully solved.  An exterminator would surely rid your home of the deadly bees, preserving most of the honey bees.  Would you dare to intervene and try to coddle and preserve the killer bees the way the U.S. is coddling and preserving its Islamist enemies?  Bees build hives; Islamists build caliphates - and they kill people to do it.

Hatem Bazien, the second founder of the new Muslim college, does not appear to be of innocent intent.  Bazien was accused of whipping up anti-Semitism on campuses across the U.S. and also aided in the establishment of “Students for Justice in Palestine” which is an anti-Israel organization.  He supported the Iraqi insurgency, April 2004, at a rally in San Francisco and appeared to also call for an uprising in the U.S. during the rally.   Critics say he is “suspect,” and “any school associated with him is suspect.”  And one expert, Nonie Darwish, a human rights advocate and founder of “Arabs for Israel” said, “He (Bazien) is an anti-Israel activist and he uses academia to further his agenda.”  What would a proliferation of like-minded-Bazien-type Muslim colleges across the U.S. likely achieve over the coming years? 

Follow-the-dots!  Heed the clues!  To do otherwise is a recipe for disaster or is evidence of a suicide mission.  Which is it?  America must wake up before it is too late.  Over the past century, Progressive Socialists/Communists infiltrated academia, churches and local and national governments in America.  America has changed drastically.  Learning from the same playbook, Muslims are duplicating the Progressive wave and are infiltrating academia, churches and local and national governments.

America, the land of the free and the home of the brave, may land in the dustbin of history if her people fail to learn to differentiate between honey bees and killer bees, between Muslim pirates and the rest of Muslim society.  President Jefferson didn’t spare the Barbary Pirates.  So serious was the matter that he created the U.S. Navy to be the exterminator.


          Occam's Razor   

                                                                                                 Occam's Razor


Is a line of reasoning that says the simplest answer is often correct. No matter how imposable, however probable, the result still stands as a truth.

Before we start posting, I wish to say I am sorry for failing the Tea Party in the 2012 Elections. I was busy with contacts in Florida, just to bring the split of votes to 48 per cent against Obama. Tennessee, and a lot of the South East States. I over looked one thing, the $100's Of Billions of Tax Dollars spent bailing out the American Car Companies.

So, I guess you could say lets welcome President Obama to his worse Night Maire On Elem Street. The News for shooting in connecticut victims as I have stated was because of Pharmaceutical Narcotics.

Adam Lanza

Attorney Gucciardi, stated that Adam Lanza was on Narcotic Prescriptions. But what is not shared with no press is the overwhelming reports that it is dangerous to prescribe Narcotics to the mental disturbed.

1987 report the pharmaceutical narcotics should not be given to the mentally disturbed.


You see, one more of the failure of government officials, to keep the people safe, more and more reports by the hundreds were coming in to the FDA, and other Government Offices, that this Pharmaceutical Heroin, and other Narcotic made the Mental Disturbed Dangerous, more so then the balanced mind.

The Epidemic of the Mental Illness, I found this book of interest, but in red high lighted word above, copy and paste the above into your google search. And you will see so many reports that all to many people turned a Blind Eye To....

So President Obama, I want you to see, just one more time what you Government Approved Dope has done, and for the next 4 years, I as well as a great many people will never let you forget that these children died under your watch. The Prime Directive Of the Constitution is very clear, and that is The Safe Keep Of The People.

These Children, there is no coming back, these Teachers, there gone, and well Mr. Obama, I do welcome you to your worse night mare. For the next 4 years Occum's Razor will have 4 Phase. But my friend this will not stay trapped in the net, it will grow and grow....this I do swear.

News for photos of the victims in connecticut school ...


Charlotte Bacon, 2/22/06, female
Daniel Barden, 9/25/05, male
Rachel Davino, 7/17/83, female.
Olivia Engel, 7/18/06, female
Josephine Gay, 12/11/05, female
Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 04/04/06, female
Dylan Hockley, 3/8/06, male
Dawn Hochsprung, 06/28/65, female
Madeleine F. Hsu, 7/10/06, female
Catherine V. Hubbard, 6/08/06, female
Chase Kowalski, 10/31/05, male
Jesse Lewis, 6/30/06, male
James Mattioli , 3/22/06, male
Grace McDonnell, 12/04/05, female
Anne Marie Murphy, 07/25/60, female
Emilie Parker, 5/12/06, female
Jack Pinto, 5/06/06, male
Noah Pozner, 11/20/06, male
Caroline Previdi, 9/07/06, female
Jessica Rekos, 5/10/06, female
Avielle Richman, 10/17/06, female
Lauren Rousseau, 6/1982, female (full date of birth not specified)
Mary Sherlach, 2/11/56, female
Victoria Soto, 11/04/85, female
Benjamin Wheeler, 9/12/06, male
Allison N. Wyatt, 7/03/06, female


And still they are gone and there is no coming back.....

for them or the victims of the last shooting by Holmes.

News for victims of holmes

And yes Mr.Obama as you stated the shooting of Congress Lady Gabby.

There is much more...did you all know there was to be another Theater Shooting but it was stopped by a police officer. Hundreds of thousands of reports of of crime so terrible it has been overwhelming, and most overlooked and covered up.....


Henry Massingale

Founder and Director Of the

International Boycott Of The Arabic Drug Empire



          So Many NYC Sponsors – So Much Love & Support for LTYM NYC!   

If our stories are the heart of every Listen To Your Mother NYC production, then our local sponsors are its lifeblood. It simply isn’t possible to put on a professional show without them. This year we are pleased to welcome back Mind Over Matter Health & Fitness (MOM)! Mind Over Matter Health & Fitness has In-Home Personal Training, Yoga, Pilates, Boot Camp, Massage, Pre-Natal/Post-Partum fitness and Bridal Packages. Plus, the Alexander Technique! Thank you, MOM founder and personal trainer, Joshua Margolis, for your continued support! LTYM NYC is also delighted to welcome back… Sarah Rostan, our NY-area Rodan + Fields consultant And… Ellen Rassiger, owner of Happy Dog Training & Behavior, voted the BEST family dog training school on Long Island for 5 years in a row. And finally a welcome and a hearty thank-you to LTYM NYC newcomers… What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood, a podcast from LTYM NYC […]

The post So Many NYC Sponsors – So Much Love & Support for LTYM NYC! appeared first on LTYM NYC.

          Russell Simmons’ Biopic to be Written by ‘Black-ish’ Creator Kenya Barris   

Russell Simmons’ life story will be told in the upcoming FOX biopic Life And Def: Sex Drugs Money + God and Black-ish creator Kenya Barris has been tapped to pen the script. According to Deadline, the biopic will detail the Def Jam Records founder’s  rise from the borough of Queens to becoming an iconic figure in […]

The post Russell Simmons’ Biopic to be Written by ‘Black-ish’ Creator Kenya Barris appeared first on GRIP MAGAZINE.

          Moon Diagrams – Lifetime of Love (2017)   
320 kbps | 124 MB | LINKS ‘Lifetime of Love’ is the debut album by Moon Diagrams, the solo recording project of Deerhunter co-founder and drummer Moses John Archuleta. Recorded in Georgia (Atlanta and Athens) and Manhattan (East Village) over a 10-year period, ‘Lifetime of Love’ finds Archuleta processing various stages of love, loss, and […]
           Lauren Bush Lauren builds sandcastles with her son James    
The 33-year-old FEED founder helped her little boy make his very first sandcastle on Thursday, and she commemorated the moment by sharing an Instagram photo of them at the beach.
          Molly Crabapple Studio Visit | Stated Magazine   

Stated Magazine ( visits illustrator Molly Crabapple in her home studio for a conversation about her work and life.

Molly Crabapple is an illustrator, former burlesque dancer and founder of Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School. Her impressive client list includes The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Red Bull, and Marvel Comics. She invited stated into her home studio in Manhattan for a chat and to watch her work on character sketches for her forthcoming graphic novel, Straw House (First Second Books, 2013), which she describes as, "The story of a traveling circus populated by immortal outcasts that come to a small town in rustbelt Pennsylvania and destroy it." Watch the above stated video and see her create Colin, one of the main characters in the new novel. She explains her creative process, how she developed her unique style of illustration, and what's next for her.

Find more interviews and features with creative and passionate personalities at

Cast: Stated Magazine, molly crabapple and Ethan Herr

Tags: Molly Crabapple, Stated Magazine, StatedMag, art, design, illustration, Dr. Sketchy, victorian art, studio visit, drawing, interviews and straw house

Iran cracks down on Salafists in wake of Tehran attacks (Fazel Hawramy, June 30, 2017, Al Monitor)

The five young attackers who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) in a video released shortly after the attacks appear to have traveled from Kermanshah province to Tehran undetected in early June. The rare but deadly strikes targeted two of the most guarded locations in the capital: the parliament and the mausoleum of the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

How these men obtained firearms and explosives to carry out the attacks is not clear, but Iranian officials have admitted that the country's security establishment was taken by surprise. On June 27, parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission held its second closed-door session to examine the June 7 attacks. "In this session, the new plan to maintain the security of the parliament and the ways to confront future possible incidents were discussed and necessary measures were taken," the semi-official Iranian Students' News Agency reported about the meeting. Iran has held IS directly responsible for the attacks, but it ultimately blamed the United States and "regressive" regimes in the Persian Gulf region for supporting the group. As a symbolic gesture, on June 18 Iran fired several missiles from the Kurdish areas in the west of the country, where the attackers came from, at an IS position in northeast Syria. "Our enemies should know that Tehran is not London or Paris; this was a small measure, and if they make another mistake, we will strike them with deadlier attacks," said Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the commander of the Aerospace Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Since the June 7 attacks, security forces have taken no chances and have rounded up a large number of individuals mainly associated with Salafist groups in a bid to crack down on their activities, sources inside Iran and human rights activists from outside the country told Al-Monitor.

The Shi'a and Christians are fighting the same war.

          500 Kids Have Gone Missing In DC In 2017 — Sex Trafficking Fears Have Officials Asking FBI For Help   
A total of 501 juveniles have been reported missing in D.C. since the beginning of the year. This startling number has forced the hands of several officials who’ve written a letter to call on special help from the Justice Department in investigating the matter.
The letter, obtained by the Associated Press, asked FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Jeff Sessions to “devote the resources necessary to determine whether these developments are an anomaly or whether they are indicative of an underlying trend that must be addressed.” It was signed by Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Cedric Richmond (D-La) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, who represents D.C. in Congress.
“Ten children of color went missing in our nation’s capital in a period of two weeks and at first garnered very little media attention. That’s deeply disturbing,” Richmond’s letter said.
As the AP reports, the District of Columbia logged 501 cases of missing juveniles, many of them black or Latino, in the first three months of this year, according to the Metropolitan Police Department, the city’s police force. Twenty-two were unsolved as of March 22, police said.
The Twitter profile for the DC police department is quite literally riddled with images of missing young Black and Latino girls. In spite of the officials’ concern and the posts on Twitter, police are assuring the public that there is nothing out of the ordinary.

“We’ve just been posting them on social media more often,” said Metropolitan Police spokeswoman Rachel Reid.
“We can’t focus on the numbers,” said Derrica Wilson, co-founder of the Black and Missing Foundation. “If we have one missing child, that’s too many.”
Police then went on to dispel talk of these girls being kidnapped and sold into slavery by human traffickers.
“We have no indication to believe that young girls in the District are being preyed upon by human traffickers in large numbers,” said police commander Chanel Dickerson, leader of the Youth and Family Services division, according to NBC News 4.
Notice how Dickerson said “in large numbers” as a qualifier, meaning he didn’t rule out the fact that there are human traffickers in the area preying on young girls.
As the Free Thought Project pointed out on several occasions, some of these traffickers have already been caught in D.C. — and some of them have been cops.
Linwood Barnhill Jr., a veteran of the D.C. Police Department, was exposed by the Free Thought Projectfor running a child sex ring out of his house. In 2014, in an early morning search warrant issued for his Southeast D.C. apartment found a 15-year-old girl who had previously been reported missing by her parents.
When police rescued the girl she told officers that she had met six other girls inside the Southeast D.C. apartment who told her they were also being prostituted, including with ads posted on Barnhill also took naked photos of the girls, purportedly for use in advertisements for sex.
Marijuana, condoms and a large mirror were also seized from the apartment; law enforcement officials say that the seized mirror had the names of other females who were being trafficked written on it.
Around that same time, another cop in the area was also exposed and arrested for trafficking teens. Lamin Manneh, 32, of Baltimore, pleaded guilty to traveling across state lines and using a telephone and internet to operate a prostitution business using two teens he prostituted out over 300 times.
According to the AP, Wilson also said she is concerned about whether human trafficking is a factor, citing the case of 8-year-old Relisha Rudd, who has been missing since she vanished from a city homeless shelter in 2014. A janitor who worked at the shelter was found dead of apparent suicide during the search for the girl.
“They prey on the homeless, they prey on low-income children, they prey on the runaways, they prey online,” Wilson said.
“Whether these recent disappearances are an anomaly or signals of underlying trends, it is essential that the Department of Justice and the FBI use all of the tools at their disposal to help local officials investigate these events, and return these children to their parents as soon as possible,” Richmond said.
According to the anti-Human Trafficking group, Polaris, located in D.C., the number of trafficked humans in the US is startling.
Sadly, the US government appears to spend far more time looking for an illegal plant or for Tom Brady’s jersey, than they do on missing children.
Matt Agorist is the co-founder of, where this article first appeared. He is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been

          U.S. regulator files fraud charges in Bitcoin, office space investment schemes   
WASHINGTON, June 30- The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday said it filed fraud charges against the founder of a purported Bitcoin platform and a chain of co-working spaces located in former bars and restaurants, alleging he bilked investors in both companies. Renwick Haddow, a British citizen living in New York, allegedly set up an unregistered...
          Facebook Rejects Christian Fourth of July Video   
Contact: Kim Kent, Heirloom Audio, 815-259-0137, THOMSON, Ill., June 29, 2017 /Standard Newswire/ -- Facebook has rejected a new family-friendly Fourth of July video that recounts America's Christian heritage, because it doesn't follow the company's "advertising policies for advertising adult products or services."The short animated video, produced by Heirloom Audio Productions founder Bill Heid, warns that the nation's future depends on returning to Source: Heirloom Audio Productions
          CARICOM deals a blow to US plans for regime change in Venezuela    

Venezuela’s Foreign Minister, Delcy Rodriguez, recently tweeted that the “US State Department deployed its ambassadors in the region to attack Venezuela. We come with renewed vigor to defeat them at the OAS.”

So said, so done. The US Ambassador to Guyana, Perry Holloway, spewed the US false narrative regarding Venezuela in our local newspapers. US ambassadors in a number of other Caribbean countries did the same. It was a coordinated attempt to mislead the people of Guyana and the region about what is really happening in Venezuela, and to apply pressure on members of CARICOM (Caribbean Community) and the OAS (Organization of American States) to succumb to US calls for intervention, with the aim of overthrowing the democratically elected government of President Nicolas Maduro.

US diplomats in Guyana, and for that matter throughout the Global South, are not diplomats in the strict sense of the word, and can be better described as political activists. They are constantly meddling in the internal affairs of the country they are stationed in, giving directives to the compliant neo-colonial regimes and actively undermining and destabilizing independent and anti-imperialist governments, such as the government in Venezuela.

This latest US psych-ops came just after the May 31st meeting of the OAS in Washington DC and just prior to the June 19th OAS meeting in Cancun, Mexico, where CARICOM member states took a firm and united anti-interventionist position in relation to the current situation in Venezuela, delivering a resounding defeat to the interventionist approach advocated by the US, Mexico, Peru and Panama,

Following the June 19th OAS meeting, Venezuela’s Foreign Minister, Delcy Rodriguez, said: “Today we come with the strength of our people who took to the streets to denounce the interventionism of the Organization of American States, we come with the force of the rain of our commander Hugo Chavez. Independence and sovereignty triumphed today over the United States of America, with its brutal pressure, with its gross extortion, with its maneuvers…”

She added that the call for intervention encourages the “most violent, anti-democratic factions in our country,” and she thanked the Caribbean nations for their “deeply principled stand.”
In his letter and articles, US ambassador, Perry Holloway, had the temerity to lecture Guyana and other member-states of the OAS about their obligation to democracy and human rights. He stated that: “The diverse family of nations in the Americas recognizes democracy is a part of our collective DNA. Sixteen years ago in Peru, we underscored this principle with the adoption of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, affirming the right of the peoples of the Americas to democracy and obligating our governments to defend that right.”

I suggest that before US diplomats in the Caribbean and the Americas offer any criticism or advice to Venezuela or any member-state of the OAS on issues of democracy and human rights, they should first examine the behavior of their own government in relation to their undemocratic practices and policies, both internally and around the world, and their endless list of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Trump lays bare sham democracy

The only positive aspect of Trump’s presidency is that it is exposing, once and for all, the sham that parades as US democracy and concern for human rights. The entirely undemocratic nature of US internal and foreign policy is clear to all in 2017. Even that minority of citizens on this planet who still held out some hope that the US resembled anything close to a democracy, have now seen through the façade. American political philosopher, Sheldon S. Wolin, in his brilliant work, Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism, renders a devastating critique of US democracy and is a vital read for anyone who wishes to understand the latent fascism that underpins the politics of this Empire.

Former US Attorney-General, Ramsay Clark, had this to say: “We’re not a democracy. It’s a terrible misunderstanding and a slander to the idea of democracy to call us that. In reality, we’re a plutocracy, a government by the wealthy.” He compared President George W. Bush to Adolf Hitler, and is on record as saying at the outset of the US invasion of Iraq, that it “will be genocide again,” adding that “the greatest crime since World War Two has been US foreign policy.”

As I watch the hue and cry over Trump’s actions, it reminds me of Adolph Hitler’s response to Europe’s criticism of his policies. He told them: “I am only doing out in the open what you have been doing behind closed doors for centuries.”

A meme that was circulated at the end of Obama’s presidency said it best: “Only in shallow, self-absorbed, privileged America could a leader drop 26,000 bombs on seven countries in a single year, and have citizens mourn the end of his term because he looked and sounded classy while doing it.”

The illusion highlighted in this meme picks up on the public relations stunt that has become a hallmark of the US establishment, and which Sheldon Wolin identifies as a major feature of the “inverted totalitarianism” that exists in the US today. He describes “inverted totalitarianism” as a state of affairs where a small ruling elite (the 1%) have established an authoritarian society which benefits them exclusively. In this society, corporations have corrupted and subverted democracy, and natural resources and labor are seen as mere commodities to be exploited for huge profits.

This status quo is maintained by a sophisticated propaganda machine that lulls the majority of people into apathy. Central to reinforcing this hegemon is a tightly controlled corporatized media, a mouthpiece for the establishment, that is constantly spinning fake news and false narratives, and emphasizing rabid consumerism, individualism and the politics of personality and sensationalism. Wolin, like Clark, compares modern day USA to Nazi Germany, pointing out that the form is different but the essence, that is, fascism, is the same.

Friendly fascism

Tirty-seven years ago, political scientist, Bertram Gross, coined the term “friendly fascism” and predicted the Orwellian reality we are witnessing today in the US. His thesis converges with the conclusions reached by Wolin, Clark and others.

In his farewell address at the end of his presidency in 1961, Republican Dwight Eisenhower, warned the American people about the dangers of the “Military Industrial Complex”, the control it exerted and its ability to, in his words, “weaken or destroy the very institutions and principles it was designed to protect.” This has surely come to pass.

So, before US diplomats such as Perry Holloway attempt to discredit the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela, initiated by one of the most revered freedom fighters in the Americas, the late Hugo Chavez, and led today by President Nicolas Maduro and the United Socialist Party of Venezuela with the support of the majority of the people of Venezuela, they would do well to take a long and hard look at the crisis of democracy in their own country.

Let Mr. Holloway explain to Guyanese and the citizenry of all member-states of the OAS why, in 2017, Africans in the US continue to be gunned down in the streets on a regular basis.
Let him explain to us why the US has the largest number of persons imprisoned per capita in the world, and why the prisoners are disproportionately made up of Africans, Indigenous and other people of color, before he points the finger at a revolution that has lifted African and Indigenous Venezuelans out of debilitating discrimination and poverty.

Let Mr. Holloway address the situation of US political prisoners like Mumia Abu-Jamal, Jamil Al-Amin (formerly Rap Brown), Leonard Peltier and so many others who are languishing in US prisons before he speaks of Venezuela’s human rights record.

Let the US Ambassador focus on the shocking poverty and illiteracy statistics emerging from his own country, before he points the finger at the Bolivarian revolution which has made unprecedented gains in eradicating poverty and illiteracy amongst the masses of Venezuela’s poor. Anyone who visited oil rich Venezuela prior to the Bolivarian revolution can testify to the abhorrent conditions and the repressive measures used to subjugate the majority of Venezuelans, and in particular, African and Indigenous Venezuelans.

Does the Ambassador truly believe that his letters and articles, full of the usual delusional and empty rhetoric, would convince any of us that his government is concerned about democracy and human rights in Venezuela, or anywhere in the world for that matter, after we have witnessed the apocalyptic events in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and the list goes on?

Does Mr. Holloway think we have forgotten our own history in the Americas and the Caribbean, including the US orchestrated coups that overthrew the democratically elected governments of President Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala, President Salvador Allende in Chile, Prime Minister Maurice Bishop in Grenada, President Manuel Zelaya in Honduras and the constitutional coup against President Dilma Rousseff in Brazil? What about the removal at gunpoint of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide by US military personnel in Haiti?

There is not the space in a single article to even list the US crimes in our region. Just to chronicle them warrants a book. If we were to list US crimes against the whole of humanity, we are looking at a library of books. The US Empire and the British, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch Empires that preceded it, have been without doubt the worst examples of terrorism in all of human history.

In his letter and article, Mr. Holloway advises that “when a government breaks with democracy, we must act in solidarity with its people, not through intervention or interference, but with diplomacy and mediation among all parties to help find a peaceful, democratic, and comprehensive solution.” Tell us Mr. Holloway: Are the examples listed above your idea of diplomacy and mediation?

These governments were not removed because of their lack of democracy or abuse of human rights. They were removed, like countless others throughout the Global South, because they were attempting to free their country from the clutches of the Empire, and liberate their wealth and resources so that they might benefit the masses of their people. Our own founding fathers in Guyana, Cheddi Jagan and Forbes Burnham, were subjected to the same destabilization tactics at the hands of the US government and its CIA.

Empire loses its grip

The US and its diplomats need to understand that with the advent of the internet and the availability of information in this day and age, the Empire has lost all credibility. There is no one left on earth who can be misled by their hollow and hypocritical rhetoric. Do not be fooled by those who dare not speak openly -- they are afraid of losing their visas and even worse reprisals. Regardless of their cowardice and silence, everyone knows that the Emperor is naked. Behind closed doors, even those satraps who publicly profess their allegiance, such as the Saudis, snigger and jeer at the hideous state of affairs in the United States of America.

As the US Empire crumbles, its vampires, who have sucked the blood of the sufferers for so long, are in panic mode because, despite their descent into blatant authoritarianism and fascism, they continue to lose their grip on the terrifying world they have created, as it spins more and more out of control. The ugly death squads such as Al Qaeda and ISIS, the very Frankensteins of their own making, are turning right back on them. As Malcom X observed so long ago, the chickens must come home to roost. One cannot keep up with the number of attacks in the US and Europe.

One of the vampires, largely credited with creating Al Qaeda, a former US National Security Advisor, and founder of the Rockefeller-controlled Trilateral Commission, Zbigniew Brzezinski, in a speech to British elites at Chatham House in 2008, spoke volumes when he said:

“…new and old major powers face still yet another novel reality, in some respects unprecedented, and it is that while the lethality of their power is greater than ever, their capacity to impose control over the politically awakened masses of the world is at an historical low…I once put it rather pungently, and I was flattered that the British Foreign Secretary repeated this… namely, in earlier times, it was easier to control a million people than physically to kill a million people. Today, it is infinitely easier to kill a million people than to control a million people.”

The majority of CARICOM countries are governed by neo-colonial political outfits and even they voted against US plans for regime change in Venezuela.”
The current US administration, like its predecessors, whether Democrat or Republican, is involved in just that, killing millions of people all over the world in its bid to control, and trying desperately to convince us of the absurd notion that that they are doing this in the name of democracy and human rights. Trouble is, no one is buying it? The majority of CARICOM countries are governed by neo-colonial political outfits and even they voted against US plans for regime change in Venezuela. The playbook is old and tired. Donald Trump just tied up an arms deal worth 350 billion US dollars with the corrupt and entirely undemocratic regime of Saudi Arabia, a regime that is without doubt the main proliferator of the ideology of Wahhabism and the movements intent on imposing this ideology worldwide, such as Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, Al Nusra Front and ISIS. All these weapons to a government that is funding terrorism worldwide and committing genocide in Yemen.

And, when the power struggle between the Saudis and the Qataris surfaced, Trump paid lip service to the manufactured war on terror by publicly condemning Qatar’s support for terrorism, and days later sold the Qataris US military hardware worth 12 billion dollars. In light of this hypocrisy and blatant disregard for the victims of these rogue states and their global terrorist network, can you really expect us to believe that your concern with Venezuela is about lack of democracy and human rights?

No shame
Finally, to Mr. Holloway and his cohorts throughout the region, your expressed shock and horror about the so-called spillover from Venezuela’s current predicament was perhaps the most shameful part of your missive: “The spillover effects from Venezuela’s crisis are serious and growing, whether it is irregular migrant flows to countries in our region or the increasing flow of arms and criminal activity that affect the Caribbean in particular.”

This is rich coming from the people who illegally invaded Libya, murdered the Libyan leader and freedom fighter, Muammar Qaddafi in the street, and in so doing, destroyed the most prosperous and democratic nation on the African continent, causing a migration crisis of a magnitude never seen before. Your government handed over the nation of Libya to a conglomerate of thugs, criminals, terrorists and reactionary warlords, and this spillover continues to wreak havoc throughout Africa and the Arab Region six years on. Before you concern yourself with any spillover in the Caribbean, please deal with the spillover from your criminal invasion of Libya, a spillover that only this month reached Manchester, England.

In Guyana, the Americas and throughout the Global South, the masses of people are sick and tired of the same old playbook -- the one that is in fact the cause of the current situation in Venezuela. But then, that is part of the devil’s own script, cause the problem and then come to us as savior, with a solution. It plays like this: the US, through its infamous web of security agencies, NGOs, Aid Agencies, think-tanks and other Trojan horses, destabilize, sow confusion and do everything in their power to overthrow any government and subjugate any people that refuse to obey Empire. Recently, more than 300,000 Venezuelans took to the streets in support of President Nicolas Maduro and the Bolivarian Revolution.

The opposition held a demonstration that attracted 50,000. Of course, in your United States, the corporate media is reporting just the opposite. By the admission of your own president they are the purveyors of fake news and this is just another example of your country’s lack of democracy. The bottom line is this Mr. Holloway: your country and its government is no way fit to point the finger at anyone when it comes to infringement of democracy, democratic values and human rights.

In your letters and articles you ask: “If these things were happening in our own countries, would we not want the rest of our American family of nations to speak out, and reach out, to help restore fundamental democratic freedoms and respect for constitutional institutions?”

In your own words you proclaim that: “The Organization of American States has for decades provided a forum to discuss our greatest challenges and take action together to address them. The challenge before us today is the death spiral of democracy in Venezuela.”

What you say in the two quotes above is correct except for one thing, the challenge before us today is not the death spiral of democracy in Venezuela, it is the death spiral of democracy in the United States and an evil Empire spinning out of control.

You are right -- the OAS should take immediate action to prevent further terrorism and turmoil because the spillover worldwide from the crisis in the United States is serious and growing.

* GERALD A. PERREIRA is chairperson of the Guyanese organizations Black Consciousness Movement Guyana (BCMG) and Organization for the Victory of the People (OVP) and an executive member of the Caribbean Chapter of the Network in Defense of Humanity. He lived in Libya for many years, served in the Green March, an international battalion for the defense of the Al Fatah Revolution, and was an executive member of the World Mathaba based in Libya. This article previously appeared in Black Agenda Report.



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          The Surprising Small Business History of the Presidents   

Steve Strauss Headshot New.pngAs we head into the July 4th holiday, it’s important to remember the blessings of this country. In the spirit of celebrating America, I’d like to highlight a few of our presidents who have very solid backgrounds in small business.


For starters, consider that before he led the continental army, George Washington was a farmer, which was a common and fruitful entrepreneurial endeavor at the time. According to


Initially growing tobacco as his cash crop, Washington soon realized that tobacco was not sustainable and he switched to grains, particularly wheat as a cash crop in 1766. Washington read the latest works on agriculture and implemented the new methods . . . on his five farms.


Additionally, John Adams, James Monroe, and James Madison were all lawyers (which certainly requires an entrepreneurial flair).




But let’s not stop there: 


Andrew Jackson was a true entrepreneurial president. Jackson, while also a lawyer, made his first fortune buying and selling real estate. He was also a founder of Memphis, Tennessee. Additionally, his progressive policies were proactive in encouraging both small business and entrepreneurship.


Abraham Lincoln was a lawyer and an entrepreneur. In 1833, Lincoln opened a general store with a partner and took on debt to finance the company. Unfortunately, the venture failed and Lincoln’s possessions were seized by the state. Lincoln also owned a law practice and got a patent for an invention that would lift boats over obstructions in rivers.


Warren G. Harding was an excellent entrepreneur. When he was 19, he bought a newspaper that was about to go under – The Marion Star. Soon after his acquisition, the paper quickly gained success; so much so that his debts were soon paid off and the venture generated income for him for the next several decades.


After President Franklin D. Roosevelt got polio in 1921, he heard a story about a young boy who regained the use of his legs through hydrotherapy. From that point forward, FDR became what is now known as a social entrepreneur – working tirelessly to raise funds to set up a center for people with polio, later to become known as the Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation.




Before becoming president, Harry Truman owned a hat store and opened his own clothing store in Kansas City after serving in World War I.


39788592_s.jpgJimmy Carter’s small business story is one of the better ones. Carter took over his family’s peanut farm after serving in the navy, and he managed to turn that tiny farm into a multi-million-dollar business. Warehouses, shelling plants, industrial farm equipment – the works.


Despite the farm’s great success, Carter almost went broke when he was leaving the White House. However, his acute entrepreneurial skills were what allowed him to turn things around yet again. He founded the Carter Center, and became a best-selling author and speaker. Additionally, he became a millionaire in the process.


Jimmy Carter was one of the savvier businessmen presidents – even to this day.


In 1951, George H.W. Bush founded the Bush-Overby Oil Development Company as well as the Zapata Petroleum Corporation. The latter is what eventually made him a millionaire. George W., made $15 million from his initial investment in the Texas Rangers. Home run!


Today, Bill Clinton has a net worth of over $100 million, mostly from speaking fees. This is more impressive considering he did not enter or leave office rich.


Maybe Barack Obama put it best when he said “[You don’t] have to look a certain way, or be of a certain faith, or have a certain last name to have a good idea.”


Certainly, on this July 4th it is important to remember that even presidents started small (businesses, that is)!


About Steve Strauss

Steven D. Strauss is one of the world's leading experts on small business and is a lawyer, writer, and speaker. The senior small business columnist for USA Today, his Ask an Expert column is one of the most highly-syndicated business columns in the country. He is the best-selling author of 17 books, including his latest, The Small Business Bible, now out in a completely updated third edition. You can also listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business SuccessSteven D. Strauss.


Web: or Twitter: @SteveStrauss

You can read more articles from Steve Strauss by clicking here


Bank of America, N.A. engages with Steve Strauss to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Steve Strauss is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Steve Strauss. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.


Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC.  ©2017 Bank of America Corporation

          What Your Prices Say About Your Small Business   

Ebong Eka Headshot.pngAs a small business, it's very important to charge what you are worth. Yes, it’s easier said than done but I want to share what your prices say about you, your expertise and your business.


A small business owner is challenged by charging what you are worth, having a healthy enough profit margin and collecting on sales. In a previous post I discussed the importance of cash management. Cash management includes collecting from your accounts receivables, or from the bills that your clients owe you for services that you've already provided.  Higher prices and a larger profit margin allows for more growth for your business.


One of the many things your potential customer thinks about when considering doing business with you is, "Will I receive value greater than the price that I'm going to pay?" There are two reasons people spend money:


  1. To get a desired result
  2. To solve an important problem


How well you solve that problem, or how much they want that desired result will dictate the price that they are willing to pay.


Some clients have said to me, "…but Ebong, if I'm the lowest price, maybe they'll come and buy from me, and then I can eventually charge them more." This never happens and never works. I'll give you a recent example.




Earlier this year, a personal finance app company announced they were going to start charging $3 a month for their app that was initially free. The app helps users save money and make better financial budgeting decisions.  The level of negative complaints from consumers in response were astronomical. People were more upset about paying $3 a month, or $36 a year, for a tool that helped them save thousands of dollars every year.



The company believed if they charged for their app, their customers would see the value and pay. But no one wants to be surprised. The customers’ expectation is that it would be free, so they expected it to be free. When you change that expectation, people get angry.


Now let's apply this to your business.


Your customers have a lot of questions when you have lower prices than your competitors:


  • Why is this person’s price so cheap in relation to the next competitor?
  • Is this a new business?
  • Do they have the requisite expertise necessary to do what I need to have done?


74127740_s.jpgCustomers don’t want to feel they are making a buying mistakes – so they’ll go with the higher price

because it’s a safe bet.


Here’s another example:


If I had a luxury car for sale for $25,000 and the Kelly Blue Book stated the same car should be worth about $40,000, you would think something is wrong.




Is there an engine in it? Does it have brakes? Does it have wheels? What am I missing? Is it stolen?


You know why? Mainly because it's not congruent to what I expect for the value I'm trying to receive.  The same thing is happening to your business.


Here's a simple tip that you can use to check pricing. Research your nearest competitor’s prices. Match the price that they charge, and then provide more value. And value doesn't have to be in the form or a discount. Value can be in the form of additional services that doesn't cost more.

If you're a graphic designer and you provide design services to create a logo, maybe you could add additional revisions to the logo as a bonus. In reality, you may charge several hundred dollars extra for that, but say, "Look, for this particular package, I'll give you three revisions for free. If you want unlimited revisions, it's going to be double the price."


The bigger goal is being able to provide something that people want and value. Customers spend money for a desired result or to solve a problem. It’s almost never because of price. The successful competitors in your industry are charging more than you are because they understand this principle.

About Ebong Eka

Ebong Eka is no stranger to the world of personal finance. As a certified public accountant and former professional basketball player he offers a fresh perspective to small business planning and executing. With over fifteen years of accounting, tax & small business experience with firms like PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte & Touche and CohnReznick, Ebong provides practical money solutions tailored to the everyday person, the aspiring entrepreneur or the small business owner.


Ebong is the founder of EKAnomics, a sales, pricing and leadership firm. He is also the founder of Ericorp Consulting, Inc., a tax and management consulting firm. Ebong is the author of “Start Me Up! The-No-Business-Plan, Business Plan.


Web: or Twitter: @EbongEka.

You can read more articles from Ebong Eka by clicking here


Bank of America, N.A. engages with Ebong Eka to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Ebong Eka is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Ebong Eka. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.


Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC.  ©2017 Bank of America Corporation

          7/1/2017: WEATHER: Unis turn to Outfit   
Brand automation and marketing company Outfit is working with several of the Group of Eight universities in a bid to save what they say is an estimated $2.8 million in wasted revenue, which could be spent on research and teaching. Outfit founder Bruce...
          Interview: Setting The Course For Takeda’s R&D Future   
Dr. Andrew Plump joined Takeda from Sanofi in 2015 as the Japanese company's chief medical and scientific officer. In his...

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Work Truck Solutions, an industry leader in the commercial truck inventory solutions market, has completed a Series B Preferred Stock financing round of $5 million. Kathryn Schifferle, CEO and founder of Work Truck Solutions, says the company will use this new round of funding to accelerate expansion of the marketing and commercial inventory management services […]
          Outdoor: S'mores   

Projected to be a top 10 brand in the frozen novelty desserts category by the end of the year, Yasso Frozen Greek Yogurt has climbed the frozen novelty ranks, outpacing legacy players with deep pockets like Unilever, Nestle, and Friendly’s with its product innovation and nimble brand marketing. Founded by Drew Harrington and Amanda Klane, who were kindergarten friends turned entrepreneurs and ice cream school dropouts, they launched Yasso with a vision to make great tasting dessert that consumers could feel good about. And they’ve done just that with products that are 100-150 calories with 5 grams of protein, with new products to launch later this year. On June 30, the brand will be launching a new summer campaign called Boom Goes the Ice Cream to usher in a new era of dessert. The campaign will run from July through August and is comprised of a mix of out of home, radio, digital, social and cinema. In addition, this August street teams will target select events with a voice-activated I Scream truck where participants who scream loud enough will be rewarded with Yasso bars. The campaign was created in partnership with new agency Fortnight Collective, which takes a two-week timeframe to solve for a brand challenge, from initial briefing to campaign development – and an agency that matches the brand’s out-of-the-box approach. Fortnight Collective was responsible for traditional media planning, creative development and production (digital videos, radio ads, digital banners, outdoor, cinema), in addition to working with an experiential partner on building out the ‘I Scream Truck’ Fortnight’s collective consists of creatives, strategists and experts who have worked inside the walls of Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Anomaly and R/GA, among others. The Yasso campaign was led by industry legends Kat Street (CP+B for 10 years, working with brands like Diesel and Domino’s, before going freelance) and Brock Johnson (worked at CP+B, Ogilvy, Victors & Spoils, working with Burger King, before going freelance). In addition to developing the creative, they’re also featured in the work as the voiceover talent. Media: Outdoor Category: Food Client: Yasso Frozen Greek Yogurt Agency: Fortnight Collective Country: United States of America Client Drew Harrington: Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Yasso Katie Lamb: Creative Manager, Yasso Agency Andy Nathan: Founder/CEO, Fortnight Collective (FC) Mandy Eckford: Director of Client Service, Fortnight Collective Kat Street: Creative Director/Art Director, FC Member Brock Johnson: Creative Director/Copywriter, FC Member Ted Morse: Brand Director, Fortnight Collective Jen Miller: Brand Supervisor, Fortnight Collective Stephen Stewart: Brand Supervisor, Fortnight Collective Erin Hess: Operations Coordinator, Fortnight Collective Strategy Lisa Hyman: Co-Founder, The goodDog Agency Max Kabat: Co-Founder, The goodDog Agency Media Beth Egan: Media Consultant, FC Member, Traditional Planning & Buying AMP Agency: Digital Planning & Buying Video Editor: Christian Robins, 11 Dollar Bill Managing Director/Producer: Lisa Effress, 11 Dollar Bill Producer: Ramon Nunez, 11 Dollar Bill Color/Finishing: Herman Nieuwoudt Final Mix: Coupe Studios Music Supervision: Bill Meadows, ENGAGE Music Artist: Aaron LaCrate Stills Photographer: Jason Leiva Producer: Sheri Radel Rosenberg OOH Producer: Cindy Perez Production Company: Salt Studios Printer: Sally Alexander Digital Digital Producer: Ryan Adams Developer: Tooth, LLC

          Outdoor: Misfits   

Projected to be a top 10 brand in the frozen novelty desserts category by the end of the year, Yasso Frozen Greek Yogurt has climbed the frozen novelty ranks, outpacing legacy players with deep pockets like Unilever, Nestle, and Friendly’s with its product innovation and nimble brand marketing. Founded by Drew Harrington and Amanda Klane, who were kindergarten friends turned entrepreneurs and ice cream school dropouts, they launched Yasso with a vision to make great tasting dessert that consumers could feel good about. And they’ve done just that with products that are 100-1