Ex-Pat-Riotism

first_imgRacism is a word that gets bandied about a lot nowadays. And with good reason. It seems as though, despite years of PR about being PC, most cultures are just as insular and isolated as they’ve always been. Since the EU and the opening up of borders to diverse cultures and peoples there has been a significant amount of emigration and immigration. But this has not led to a merging of differences, a fusion of mixed races, religions, ideas and identities. We have not all joined together in the proverbial melting pot. At first sight this is a bad thing. Networks of Europeans come to England, to live by the language, suffer the climate, prosper (hopefully) by the economy. But, mostly, they continue to live and work within the same groups that they came over with, a reassuring stability, perhaps, in a new and perplexing life. For it is always easier for true natives to experience the excitement of other cultures on their home turf. The English can enjoy the delights of Indian, Chinese, French, Italian, Spanish cuisine on a daily basis, not several metres from their front doors. But if they chose to take this further and actually emigrate (a popular phenomenon of late) they too tend to flock together, finding refuge in the ex-pat community, fish and chips and Radio Four. True, we all love to experience other cultures, sometimes even immerse ourselves in them completely, but, after all that, we will still yearn for things that remind us of home, little touchstones that reassure and comfort, things that tell us we belong. Travelling has to be one of the most stimulating experiences in life, new sites, new foods, new languages, new lives. But, oddly enough, at the same time as expanding one’s world view it can also shrink it, bring one’s own cultural identity more sharply into focus. It’s an incredible thing that when you are halfway across the world and you suddenly hear your native tongue spoken in your native accent. Instantly a bond appears. ‘Are you English?’ You enquire excitedly. ‘Yes’, they answer, ‘I’m f r o m Derbyshire.’ ‘Oh!’ You e x c l a i m . You’ve never been to D e r b y s h i r e, you have no intention of ever going there, but this is a bond between you both. Out there in the big wide world, among people who sometimes seem so different from you they could be from another planet, these tiny things feel important. Most English – reserved at best, and bloody unfriendly at worst – who won’t talk to their fellow inhabitants in a lift unless under duress, will spend hours in intensely irrelevant exchanges when encountering a fellow ex-pat abroad. We travel to see other things, know other countries, this is wonderful and exciting and stimulating. And, after a time away, in a country where you don’t understand the jokes, don’t quite get the cultural references and can’t get hold of Marmite or Marmalade for love nor money, a little piece of home can seem like an oasis in a desert, or a good cup of tea on a cold, drizzly winter’s day. We use our cultures to connect to each other, find reference points that we can share, reassure ourselves that we are understood, we are not alone. Whenever I met an English person in America I just used to talk about English TV. After six months of weird American cable drivel I delighted in recalling old episodes of Faulty Towers and Blackadder. I am about as unpatriotic a person as one could hope to find. I despise our weather, am embarrassed by our politics and bored by our food. I love to travel to other countries and love to experience other cultures. Yet I am not, and perhaps sadly never could be, completely at home in them. England is home to me, and long after I’ve left (for I’ll emigrate as fast as I can get a job and a visa) it will still be a part of me. I’ve been raised in England, steeped in its way of life for so long that my identity is obviously inextricably fused with my culture. There is no escape. This is why it takes generations of living in a country other than your own before you can reasonably feel part of that country’s culture, before you can reasonably call yourself a native. And what does it matter? The beauty of this world is its diversity. I love that I can experience different, strange, weird and wonderful things wherever I go. It would be a sad day when we all dropped our cultural identities in favour of some kind of fused oneness. We must keep our differences, celebrate them, and take oppourtunity to experience as much of other people as possible.ARCHIVE: 4th week TT 2004last_img read more

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Irwin’s nabs Scottish deal with Asda

first_imgPortadown-based Howell House, the cakes and biscuits division of Northern Irish bakery Irwin’s, has secured a £250,000 deal to export its Howell’s Handmade Jammy Joeys cakes to 47 Asda stores in Scotland.The deal is the first time that Howell House has exported its products and is expected to boost total sales for the division to £600,000 per year. Howell House, acquired by Irwin’s three years ago, specialises in Irish-style cakes, making products under the Howell’s Handmade and Rankin Selection Cakes brands.David Quigg, NI and Scotland Asda buyer, said of the deal: “Our local business with Howell House has more than doubled over the last year, so this really is another great accomplishment and the first step in what we hope will be the roll-out of further products from the brand to Scotland and the rest of the UK.”Irwin’s export business is worth around £17m in sales, with Nutty Krust batch bread and Rankin Selection Irish breads on sale in mainland supermarkets.last_img read more

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Back to School

first_imgWelcome to the 2008 Back to School Packet. In this edition, experts from University of Georgia Cooperative Extension offer tips to help you and your child get ready for school. Feature articles address school safety, study habits, packed lunches, school gardens, money management and school communication. Editors, these feature articles are provided to help you give your readers the timely, valuable information they want. Your UGA Cooperative Extension county agent (just call 1-800-ASK-UGA1) can help you localize these features. The stories are available on the Georgia FACES media kit Web site under Back to School Packet.News Articles 20081. Tax-free holiday, sales combine for big savings – Sharon Omahen2. Provide students with a place to study – April Sorrow3. Stay safe on the school bus –Allie Byrd4. Prepare for school – practice the morning routine – Kristen Plank5. Communication key to school success – Stephanie Schupska6. Send homemade, nutritious lunches to school – Helena Atwater7. Raise financially literate children – April Sorrow8. Keep lunch safe – Helena Atwater9. Children bloom in school gardens – April Sorrow10. Help kids, teachers deal with bullies – Brad Haire11. Get involved early to stop school dropouts – April Sorrow (April Sorrow was principle editor of the 2008 Back to School Packet and is a news editor with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

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Poinsettia History

first_imgBecause of their popularity as holiday decorations, poinsettias are the best-selling potted plants in the United States. Here are some facts and history about America’s favorite houseplant: Poinsettias come in many colors, including scarlet, ivory, pink and mauve. The colorful part that we might consider the poinsettia flower is actually a collection of colored leaves called “bracts.” The plant’s true flower is the tiny, yellow bloom in the middle of the bract, called a “cyathium.”Poinsettias are not poisonous. Numerous studies have been conducted on poinsettia toxicity, and according to the “American Medical Association Handbook of Poisonous and Injurious Plants,” other than occasional cases of vomiting, ingestion of the poinsettia plant has been found to produce no harmful effects. (Information for this list came from University of Illinois Cooperative Extension’s “Poinsettia Pages” at extension.illinois.edu/poinsettia and from the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service.) Poinsettias were initially propagated from wild plants in central Mexico. The Aztecs used the ancestral version of today’s poinsettias to dye fabric and used the plant’s sap as a remedy for fevers. The poinsettia is named for Joel Roberts Poinsett, a native of Charleston, South Carolina. A doctor, soldier and amateur botanist, he was serving as the U.S. ambassador to Mexico in 1828 when he sent the first poinsettia clippings back to gardener friends in the U.S. He went on to help found what would become the Smithsonian Institution before his death in 1851. Pennsylvania nurseryman John Bartram is credited as being the first person to sell poinsettias under their botanical name, Euphorbia pulcherrima. The plants were renamed in the mid-19th century to honor Poinsett.Greenhouse producers grew about 33.2 million poinsettias, worth about $141 million, in 2014, according the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service. California and North Carolina top the nation in poinsettia production, growing 6.7 million and 4.6 million plants per year, respectively, but Georgia growers also turn out hundreds of thousands of poinsettias each year. last_img read more

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AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals to pay Vermont $1.4 million

first_imgVermont will receive approximately $1.4 million as part of a settlement with AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, LP, and AstraZeneca LP, Attorney General William H. Sorrell announced today. The total settlement of $68.5 million, paid to thirty-seven states and the District of Columbia, is the largest payment ever for a multistate drug consumer protection settlement.‘Pharmaceutical companies must accept that they can only promote drugs for FDA-approved uses,’ said Attorney General Sorrell, ‘to do otherwise puts some of the most vulnerable Vermonters at risk, including children, the elderly, and those suffering from mental illness.’The settlement is the result of a three-year multistate investigation into AstraZeneca’s sales and marketing practices. It resolves allegations that AstraZeneca promoted its atypical antipsychotic drug, Seroquel, for off-label usage, failed to adequately disclose the drug’s potential side effects to health care providers, and withheld negative information contained in scientific studies concerning the safety and efficacy of Seroquel.Seroquel was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use only by adults (prior to 2009), primarily to treat conditions related to schizophrenia and bipolar mania. While it is legal for physicians to prescribe drugs for off-label uses, it is a violation of federal law and Vermont’s Consumer Fraud Act to market or promote pharmaceuticals for off-label uses.In the complainty, Vermont alleges that despite the limitations on the FDA’s approval, AstraZeneca promoted Seroquel’s use in children and adolescents before establishing with the FDA that it was safe or effective to do so. AstraZeneca also promoted Seroquel to treat dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in the elderly even though Seroquel has never been approved for that treatment. In addition, AstraZeneca failed to fully disclose information about Seroquel’s side effects and risks, including weight gain, hyperglycemia, diabetes, cardiovascular complications, and an increased risk of mortality in elderly patients with dementia and other severe conditions.In addition to the monetary component, the settlement prohibits AstraZeneca from promoting Seroquel for off-label uses. The settlement contains additional injunctive relief as well, including requiring AstraZeneca to publicly post its payments to physicians on a website; to have policies in place to ensure that financial incentives are not given to marketing and sales personnel for off-label marketing; and to have policies that ensure AstraZeneca sales personnel do not promote to individual health care providers who are unlikely to prescribe Seroquel for an FDA-approved use.This is the third multistate settlement to address off-label marketing of atypical antipsychotics. In September 2009, Vermont received $432,000 as its share of a multistate settlement with Pfizer Inc. relating off-label marketing of Geodon, and in October 2008, Vermont settled with Eli Lilly and Company for $1.5 million relating to its off-label marketing of Zyprexa.Source: Vermont AG. 3.10.2011last_img read more

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CFPB fines bank millions for overdraft infraction

first_img 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: David MorrisonThe CFPB fined the Birmingham, Ala., based Regions Bank $7.5 million for charging overdraft fees to customers who had not opted in and overdraft and insufficient funds fees on its deposit advance product even though it had said it would not.The $119 billion bank has roughly 1700 branches and 2000 ATMs in 16 states, the agency said. continue reading »last_img

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NAFCU’s Dan Berger Capitol Hill testimony on data security calls for greater retail accountability

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr A couple weeks ago, NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger appeared before the House Small Business Committee on Capitol Hill to testify on behalf of credit unions on data security. Berger emphasized that retailers need to take a greater share of accountability when it comes to breaches, as financial institutions have taken the lion’s share to date — which has cost them millions of dollars that oftentimes get passed on to the consumer.We invited Dan on the show to get his firsthand experience testifying before the Committee, focusing on a few of the items NAFCU would like to see addressed in a comprehensive data security bill:— Payment of Breach Costs by Breached Entities— National Standards for Safekeeping Information— Data Security Policy Disclosure— Disclosure of Breached Entity— Enforcement of Prohibition on Data Retention— Notification of the Account Servicer— Burden of Proof in Data Breach Cases continue reading »last_img read more

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What to do when your team gets stuck

first_img 17SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Jeff DeGraff is known as the Dean of Innovation. He’s a professor at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and he has worked with some of the biggest global corporations ranging from Apple to GE to Coca-Cola.I have personally called Jeff to help brainstorm issues and help jumpstart creativity. One of the many things I learned from Jeff was that innovation does not happen in the solitude of a eureka moment. It happens more often in teams.So, what happens when a team gets stuck? I asked the Dean of Innovation to share his thoughts on why teams get stuck and what to do about it.“Innovation is created as a result of constructive conflict.” -Jeff DeGraff3 Common Reasons Teams Get StuckOrganizations and teams alike get stuck for a wide variety of reasons, but there are three that are most common: 1). They have chosen the wrong people to lead the way 2). They spend too long in the planning cycle, and 3). They miss the key handoffs and get out of sequence.Let’s take a look at how to resolve these issues: continue reading »last_img read more

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Jan De Nul selects Formosa 2 staging post

first_imgJan De Nul and a subsidiary of the Taiwan International Port Corporation (TIPC) signed a lease and operating agreement covering a total of around 15 hectares of land. Located between four and ten nautical miles off Miaoli County, Formosa 2 will comprise 47 Siemens Gamesa 8 MW turbines installed on jacket foundations in water depths of up to 55 metres. The wind farm is expected to be commissioned in 2021. Jan De Nul previously utilised the Port of Taichung as the base of operations for the Formosa 1 project. Jan De Nul selected Saipem and Sembcorp to deliver the pile jacket foundations for the wind farm. The pin piles will be fabricated by EEW SPC. The area will be used for the handling, assembly, and storage of underwater support elements, and as a staging base for the upcoming work on underwater support structures at Formosa 2. The Formosa 2 wind farm is being developed by a partnership between JERA, Macquarie’s Green Investment Group, and Swancor Renewable Energy.center_img All of the jacket components will be manufactured in Asia. The jacket foundations will be installed by Seaway 7. Jan De Nul is the EPCI contractor for the project’s foundations and subsea cables. Jan De Nul will set up a logistics and operations hub for the 376 MW Formosa 2 offshore wind farm project in the Port of Taichung, Taiwan. The subsea cables will be manufactured and delivered by South Korea’s LS Cable.last_img read more

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Justice for the Five once again denied

first_img Share 101 Views   no discussions Share RENÉ González Sehwerert. Image via: thecuban5.orgRENÉ González Sehwerert, one of Cuba’s five anti-terrorist heroes, will be released from prison October 7 having served in full the brutal and unjust sentence he was given.On September 16, South Florida District Judge Joan A. Lenard denied a motion submitted by René on February 16, 2011 requesting that he be allowed to return to Cuba and be reunited with his wife, daughters and parents. He has been unjustly obliged to remain in the United States for three years of probation.This decision, after 13 years of incarceration, constitutes a deliberate additional penalty, motivated by the same desires for political revenge which characterized the original judicial procedures which led to the conviction of the Five in 2001.Standing behind this decision is the United States government which for years has supported terrorism against Cuba, protecting organizations and individuals – within its territory – responsible for the deaths, suffering, pain and suffering of thousands of Cubans.Since 1998, Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González and René González have been subjected to unusually cruel and degrading treatment. They have withstood pressure and abuse, including separation from their loved ones, with admirable integrity, never wavering in their principles, character or behavior as model prisoners. The judge’s response to René’s motion is in no way justified and makes no sense. It is presumed that he must remain in the United States where clearly his life will be endangered, and where the most prominent anti-Cuban terrorist individuals and organizations are located.In her response, the judge reconfirmed the sentence imposed on René in 2001 which included the absurd special and additional stipulation that, upon his release from prison, he is prohibited from “associating with or visiting specific places where individuals or groups such as terrorists, members of organizations advocating violence or organized crime figures are known to frequent.” One must ask how it is possible to comply with this stipulation if René is obliged to reside precisely “where individuals or groups such as terrorists are known to frequent.” One must ask as well, although the answer is obvious, what motivates the United States and its legal system to require in a legal document the protection of “individuals or groups such as terrorists” located within its national territory.Although it is impossible to undo the injustice after so many years of unwarranted imprisonment and political attacks, the only minimally decorous action the government of the United States could take at this point would be to grant René permission to immediately return to Cuba, to put an end to the vengeful sentences imposed on Gerardo, Ramón, Antonio and Fernando, and to allow the return of all Five to their homeland. The cause of the Cuban Five is known throughout the entire world. There is a wealth of information, argumentation and legal evidence which demonstrates the arbitrary nature of the proceedings which led to their convictions and sentencing. Also widely recognized is the especially abusive treatment in prison these innocent men have received: extended periods of time in solitary confinement, lack of communication, psychological torture, unjustified family separation, limited contact with legal representatives and the denial of visits by mothers, wives and daughters.The people of Cuba deeply appreciate all the people and groups who have added their voices to the demand that this injustice end, state leaders and government officials, as well as renowned figures who have publicly or privately advocated for the freedom of the Five.It is imperative that we emphatically demand that no further injustice be committed; that no additional punishment be imposed on René, putting his life in danger; that his wife and daughters not be forced to continue living without him and that the opportunistic policy of protecting known terrorists – and aggravating the complicity of the U.S. government – be abandoned.The cause of Gerardo, Ramón, Antonio, Fernando and René is the irrevocable cause of the Cuban people. It is a commitment made by an entire people to end the injustice which the Five have suffered and an indication of their loyalty to those who have defended the homeland with great courage and sacrifice. Our efforts will not end until we see the Five home, in their land once again, with their loved ones and their people. Press Release NewsRegional Justice for the Five once again denied by: – September 30, 2011center_img Share Tweet Sharing is caring!last_img read more

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