October 16 2002 Workshop coordinator Wesley Ozier

first_imgOctober 16, 2002 Workshopcoordinator Wesley Ozier organized a fieldtrip. Montezuma Castle [inthe background] is a good example of Native American cliff dwellingabout 30 miles from Arcosanti. September workshopper Siobhan Kelly, resident and chef JimPowell, July workshoppers Rebecca Kreithen and Melinda Barnadas, andRoma Tre student Anita Maruccia. [Photo: Wes Ozier & text: SA] A lively crew onthe road. [Photo: Wes Ozier & text: SA] Jerome is an oldmining town on the side of Mingus Mountain about 35 miles fromArcosanti. September workshopper Adam Gabler, resident andfoundry worker Thomas Crowe and September workshopper RusselBennett. [Photo: Wes Ozier & text: SA] Jim Powell withRoma Tre students Valerio Pellegrini and Carlo Ciampoli in Jerome.[Photo: Wes Ozier & text: SA] The Verde Valley inthe background is amazingly colorful. [bottom] Anita Maruccia, JimPowell, Kate Caudill, Siobhan Kelly, Melody Willis and Russel Bennett.[back] Doug Lemley, Carlo Ciampoli, Valerio Pellegrini, MelindaBarnadas and Rebecca Kreithen. [Photo: Wes Ozier & text: SA]last_img read more

Read more

The European Commissions consultation on media co

first_imgThe European Commission’s consultation on media convergence, looking at issues such as connected TV standards, on-demand broadcast rules and TV advertising limitations, is due to close at the end of next week. The EU initially the Green Paper, called ‘Preparing for a Fully Converged Audiovisual World: Growth, Creation and Values’, back in April and set a deadline for the end of August for stakeholders and the wider public to share their views.Submissions are welcomed on topics such as: the right conditions for EU businesses to deal with international, especially US, competition; media freedom, content accessibility and the protection of children; single market standards and promoting the right technological environment; and how convergence and changing consumer behaviour will influence how films, TV shows and other content is financed.“Connected TV is the next big thing in the creative and digital worlds. Convergence between sectors means people can enjoy a wider choice of great content – but it also creates disruptions and challenges. We need a converged and EU-wide debate to help deal with these changes. To help business flourish, nurture creativity and protect our values,” said European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes back in April.The European Commission estimates that there are more than 40.4 million ‘connected TVs’ in Europe, and they could be in the majority of EU households by 2016, “sweeping away traditional boundaries between consumers, broadcast media and the internet.”last_img read more

Read more

Dr Thomas PM Barnett is the author of a New Yor

first_img Dr. Thomas P.M. Barnett is the author of a New York Times best-seller, The Pentagon’s New Map: War and Peace in the 21st Century. He was one of 28 presenters at the recent Casey Research/Sprott, Inc. Navigating the Politicized Economy Summit, which featured a plethora of investment strategies from some of the most successful speculators in the world. You can hear every word of their actionable investment advice, as well as all of the recorded conference presentations, with the Summit Audio Collection, available in CD or MP3 format. During a break in the recently concluded Casey Research/Sprott, Inc. Navigating the Politicized Economy Summit, Alex Daley sat down with acclaimed military analyst Thomas Barnett to discuss how his consulting firm, Wikistrat, assesses global events.last_img read more

Read more

In This Issue   The dollar has the conn today

first_imgIn This Issue. *  The dollar has the conn today. *  Except against the Chinese renminbi! *  YAHOO Finance retracts story! *  Japan reelects Abe. And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts. A Big Data Week Around The World! Good Day!…  And a Marvelous Monday to you! Well, as I told you on Friday, I begin my annual winter vacation today, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss me! HA! I’ll be writing to you each day, while I get my shopping in, relaxing taken care of, and prepare my mind for some BIG changes in 2015. More on that in 2015, but for now, it’s status quo, and I’ll be here to bring you up to date with stuff as we head to Christmas and beyond! I found a great piece on the Bloomberg this morning from author extraordinaire, Michael Lewis, and I have pieces of that in the FWIW section today, so stay tuned for that!  The currencies this morning are for the most part, down, led by the euro. It’s been a strange journey the past few trading sessions for the euro. First it’s strong, then sells off, then it’s strong again, and then sells off again. Traders can’t make up their minds on the single unit. But that should come as no surprise to long time readers, as I’ve always told you that traders are a fickle bunch!  So, the euro is weaker this morning, along with the usual suspects. The petrol currencies are getting their rears handed to them again, as Oil continues to see its price drop. Speaking of the Oil price drop, I would have to believe that the U.S. Shale Oil producers have to be swaggering about now, doing the rope-a-dope, and bobbing and weaving. I read articles by people that believe this group can withstand these lower Oil prices longer than most believe, and then I read just as many other stories that say this group is about to raise the white flag. So, I guess it all comes down to who you believe, but either way, we’ll have to play wait-n-see to see how this plays out. I wish I could tell you how I think it will play out, but NOOOOOOOOO!  The Chinese renminbi /yuan is one of the few currencies that are up this morning against the dollar, as the PBOC allowed an appreciation that just about matches the mark down the PBOC hung on the renminbi Friday morning! So, down, then up, just for GP, I guess!  I had to chuckle a bit this weekend when I heard that Brazil, who had signed a currency swap agreement with China, a few years ago, had signed a different currency swap agreement with Uruguay, bypassing the use of dollars in their terms of trade.  So, China started something, that other countries are now seeing as a useful tool for their terms of trade. I chuckled because I immediately thought of the old saying: Monkey see, Monkey do! But what if this making deals between countries becomes an epidemic? Well, it would be an epidemic to the dollar that is.. But what happens should this continue to take place all over the world?  Well, first, think about how long it has taken for China to get currency swap agreements with most major countries of the world? I started writing about it in 2009, when after signing on most of Asia, and Belarus, China signed with Argentina, it was at that time, that my Spider Sense tingled, and I began writing about this. So, for this to catch on all over the world, I would think it would be at least another 5 years. But then that coincides with my call in 2010 that the dollar would no longer be the reserve currency of the world, by the end of this decade. Hmmm… In 2001, I wrote a white paper, called the Demise of the Dollar. It was thought by many to be just a crazy man, akin to the guy with a sandwich board proclaiming that the end of the world was near.. For who would write something like that, when the dollar was king?  Well, skipping ahead to 2010, when I first made the call regarding the fate of the dollar by the end of the decade, I got those same looks. Sure the dollar had been weak for 8 years (off and on, but mostly on), that played well with the Trends stuff that I had been preaching about for years. Now, and then I see signs that this could happen as soon as 2017, so get ready, for 2017 will be here before we know it. And for those of you, who think they still have time. Procrastinating never won a ballgame for anybody. You’ll procrastinate, to the point where you wake up one day, and say. “what happened, I thought I had time!” I know, it sounds like hoo-haw when I talk about that stuff on a day when the dollar is in charge, doesn’t it? But, why not talk about it when the dollar is in charge? Makes sense to me, for it gives buyers an opportunity to look to buy at cheaper prices. If they should so partake in that. Well, Japanese PM, Shinzo Abe, won his election, and his party maintained control of the Gov’t, so no changes for Japan. What this tells us is that the Japanese people are all for the Abe plan of destroying the yen, so they can have some inflation. They must be brainwashed, for his 3 arrows plan is not working, and the arrows are going to come crashing down to the ground soon. But you get what you vote for. we as Americans should know that all too well. The Russian ruble is getting whacked once more this morning, I feel bad for this currency, as it does not deserve all this weakness, the currency has all but collapsed right before our eyes. When 10.5% interest rates, won’t even attract speculators, you have to fear, what might happen next. There’s a ton of data around the world this week, like Eurozone PMI’s tomorrow (manufacturing indexes), look for the lower Oil prices, and the weaker euro to give manufacturing a boost.   In the U.K. we’ll see their latest inflation data tomorrow, and jobs data on Wednesday. The lower Oil price should help U.K. inflation, and probably put the kyboshes on rate hike talk, which won’t be good for the pound. In Canada, it’ll be a busy week data-wise, as they will start by printing Manufacturing and Trade data tomorrow and Wednesday, followed by Retail sales and CPI at the end of the week, along with some minor stuff. I doubt the loonie will find any wind for its sails in this data this week. the lower price of Oil has everyone in Canada baffled, and the loonie on the run. Gold is down $11 this morning. And the other precious metals are draggin’ the line. There was some news overseas this past weekend that Ed Steer reported in his Saturday letter, that Austria is considering repatriating their Gold. 80% of their Gold is held at the Bank of England (BOE)..  the roster of countries looking to repatriate their Gold is growing. Well, there was one subtraction, as Switzerland was subtracted from the roster last month. too bad for the Swiss that they didn’t see the wool that the Swiss National Bank (SNB) and Gov’t pulled over their collective eyes. Well, looky there, after all the nice things I had to say about YAHOO Finance on Friday, they retracted the story they ran that Russia had seen a reduction of $4.3 Billion in Gold in the past week. Apparently, they got it wrong, and it was actually international reserves that decreased, not their Gold reserves.  So, good news for Gold. and bad news for probably dollars, but who knows what the Russians were selling from their currency reserves. But if were a betting man, I would be placing my bet on them selling dollars to buy rubles. The U.S. Data Cupboard on Friday, printed a very muted PPI (Wholesale Inflation), which as a whole fell -.2%, and as a core report was flat. So, no wholesale inflation. That is supposed to feed into the stupid CPI which will print this week. (Wednesday) The stupid CPI report is expected to print at 1.8% year on year.  Now we all know that this is about as wrong as having your head buried in your smartphone 24/7.  But. the markets love to have the wool pulled over their eyes, so they prefer to allow CPI dictate their thoughts on inflation. Today’s Data Cupboard has two of my faves, Capacity Utilization and Industrial Production. Both of these were quite weak in Rocktober, so I expect to see at least a bit of a rebound in November. We’ll also see the TIC Flows, which is the old Net Foreign security purchases data, that used to be significant, but once the Fed got their hands in the cookie jar, and began to get the Treasury buying all jumbled up, no one could figure this stuff out any longer, so it became insignificant to the markets. But not to me, I still track it, for one day, Alice. For What It’s Worth. Well, I promised you this and it should not only make you think about stuff, but will probably even bring a smile to your face, if not a chuckle or two. This is Michael Lewis on Bloomberg. “Eight Things I Wish For Finance That Won’t Happen:” “1. The financial sector rids itself of anyone with even the faintest reason to believe that he or she is unusually clever. All those that scored highly on standardized tests, or been invited to join Mensa, or finished in the top quartile of any graduating class will be banned. 2. No person under the age of 35 will be allowed to work on Wall Street.  Upon leaving school, young people, no matter how persuasively dimwitted, will be required to earn their living in the so-called real economy. If and when they turn 35, and still want to work in finance, they will carry with them memories of ordinary market forces, and perhaps be grateful to our society for having created an industry that is not subjected to them. 3. Women will henceforth make all Wall Street trading decisions. Men are more prone to financial risk-taking, and overconfidence. 4. Wall Street will take the resources it once hurled at Harvard and Yale, to recruit their students, and invest in America’s leading retirement communities, to recruit their swelling population of elderly women, most of whom are currently wasting valuable trading hours! 5. No firm shall be immortal – or rather, no firm shall be too big to fail. 6. Strive to make the rest of society feel as if finance is something everyone can and should understand, by making it easily understandable. 7. All new American financial inventions, before they are inflicted on the American economy, will first be tested upon foreigners. The French would be ideal for this job. But if the French won’t try our new stuff before we do, we can always bribe the Greeks to do it. 8. Channel America’s testosterone into financial regulation. Of course, our new financial system will probably be so well behaved that it will not require further regulation. But as a safeguard, the Securities & Exchange Commission will need to be dismantled, and rebuilt as a for-profit enterprise. So that it might be at once feared and loathed, the regulator will be named Goldman Sachs, who will be paid a finder’s fee, by the government, for every old lady it discovers in the act of a financial crime. Chuck again. Now that was fun! And chock full-o-great-ideas, eh? Michael Lewis had more to say about each item than what I typed in. So, if you would like to see the whole thing, I suggest going here: http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2014-12-15/michael-lewis-eight-things-i-wish-for-wall-street To recap. Chuck is on vacation, but you still get to hear from him! What a country! The dollar has the conn today, except with the Chinese renminbi. Lots-o-data to get through all over the world this week before Christmas. Austria is considering repatriating their Gold, the roster of countries doing so, or having already done so, is growing, sans the Swiss!  The ruble is once again under siege this morning, and Japan reelects Abe and his band of compatriots. The Rolling Stones comes to mind here… You don’t always get what you want, but you sometimes get what you need. Currencies today 12/15/14.. American Style: A$ .8210, kiwi .7735, C$ .8625, euro 1.2420, sterling 1.5650, Swiss $1.0345, . European Style: rand 11.6540, krone 7.3865, SEK 7.5715, forint 248.45, zloty 3.3635, koruna 22.1840, RUB 60.15, yen 118.85, sing 1.3135, HKD 7.7525, INR 62.94, China 6.1152, pesos 14.78, BRL 2.6700, Dollar Index 88.53, Oil $58.05, 10-year 2.13%, Silver $16.81, Platinum $1,219.75, Palladium $812.78, and Gold.. $1,209.94 That’s it for today. Well, today is chock-full-o-memories for me. As December 15th is the birthday of my younger sister, Terri. So, Happy Birthday sis!  But as a kid, the 15th always was the day that marked the day when my dad would walk through the front door with a Christmas Tree! The old house we lived in had 10 foot ceilings, and it always seemed to me that the star on top of the tree would be near the ceiling! There are some classic pictures of the family standing in front of the decorated Christmas tree. Seeing them now, I always think of some poor Eastern Europe family, for we look pathetic! But. we didn’t know we were poor! So. that’s 12/15 for me. Back then, 10 days before Christmas was stretching the time the tree would last. These days we go and cut them down, and they last a month!  OK. well, our Blues won their game on Saturday night in Denver, our colleague, Dane, was at the game. It was a successful trip to Southwest Missouri on Saturday, again, thanks to my good friend, Duane, for helping me! My car looks so out of place sitting in the garage! Well, I know my first stop today for shopping, I sure hope there’s no hassle involved, I love Christmas shopping, until there’s a hassle..  Alex has his last final today, and will be coming home tomorrow for about a month! What do I pay for? Oh well, it’ll  be money well spent, in 10 years!  I just hope. no, I won’t go there, that’s not required today, Chuck, let’s just go about our business and hope everyone a Marvelous Monday! Chuck Butler President EverBank World Marketslast_img read more

Read more

first_img — – CASEY: “Severe but survivable” event coming This event will have repercussions on everything from how and where you shop and seek medical care…to how you invest and receive fixed income benefits, such as Social Security. Click here to learn more. World-Altering Shock #6: Are You Ready? Since 1979, there have been five truly world-altering shocks. Bill Bonner’s small, private network of researchers has predicted every single one so far. Today, Bill is warning of a sixth major shock on track to hit right here in the heart of America. Are you, your family, and your money prepared? Find out here. Important information about a strange website This website lets you invest in little-known $25 investment notes that pay interest rates as high as 28.99%. If you buy enough of them, you could collect thousands every month. Mark F. has already collected an extraordinary $53,539 over 6 months. Carl P. collected an incredible $67,419 over 14 months. And Isadore P. collected an unheard-of $226,080 over just 4 months. They simply logged into a strange website and started on the path to collecting that income. Click here and find out how to access this website. – L: Some people might rather stay home, not wanting to seem like a Scrooge. Doug: Now there’s something I do object to – Scrooge has become a powerfully destructive meme loose in society. Dickens was a social critic of the Victorian age, perhaps rightly so in many ways, but his attack on the creative power of wealth in the form of his caricature, Scrooge, is misleading and harmful. L: There was great injustice in the Victorian era, and, to all accounts, much inhuman treatment of poor people by the wealthy, though that was hardly a Victorian invention. But the wealthy, back then, were also usually the aristocracy, with hereditary titles and power. I’ve long thought that the problem lay in the legal power – coercive power – the wealthy had over others, not their wealth, per se. Since then, there have been changes, including a huge though incomplete separation between the non-coercive power of money and the coercive power of the state. But people still conflate wealth with coercion and various personality traits that have nothing to do with wealth. Doug: Such as? L: Many people believe stereotypes, reinforced by Hollywood and other cultural sources, that rich people are obsessed with money, care only about money, are greedy, and completely lacking in generosity. Nice people don’t care about money. Rich people are mean – and being mean is how you get rich. But it’s not true. I’ve made a study of this. All the really wealthy people I know got that way by creating enormous value. I know one of the first guys to set up “sweatshops” in China, enabling people who had few choices other than prostitution and destitution to work in clean buildings, albeit for long hours, at better pay than they could get anywhere else. I know another fellow who saw a trading pattern and developed a system to take advantage of it and then sold it to Goldman Sachs for $125 million. And more, all were passionate about creating something of value, and that’s what led to great wealth. Most started with nothing more than anyone else, and even the few that were born with silver spoons in their mouths took the money they started with and turned it into a lot more money. And none of them think the most fun thing to do on weekends is to evict poverty-stricken people from their homes. I found that rich people do think about money; they understand it, invest it, put it to work for them. But it seems to me that poor people spend a lot more time thinking about money, precisely because they have so little of it; managing every penny is critically important. Poverty is not bliss, which is why people struggle so hard to escape it. They are not idiots fooled by Madison Avenue advertising executives: they’re poor, and they know that’s no fun. Doug: That’s right. As you know, I’ve pointed out in all my books that the key to accumulating wealth is to pay attention to these very things. Produce more than you consume, so you have money to invest in creating more wealth. Maybe the Calvinists were on to something, with their notion that visible wealth was a sign of inward grace; they figured God must think you’re doing something right if he rewarded you with wealth. That brings my mind back to Scrooge, not Dickens’s Scrooge, but Uncle Scrooge, who, in my view, is a totally sound character. (Interviewed by Louis James, Editor, International Speculator) This interview was first published on October 13, 2010 Editor’s Note: In yesterday’s Weekend Edition, Casey Research founder Doug Casey told us how he celebrates Christmas. Today, Doug explains why he admires Scrooge McDuck. Louis James: So, you’re not a Grinch. Reindeer and blinking lights are okay? Doug: You can even find them in some predominantly Muslim countries, and that’s fine. It’s good wintertime fun. L: I suppose societies need periodic celebrations, in one form or another. Doug: Yes, but there’s a dark side to what we call the holiday season in the West, at which time people are supposed to celebrate happiness. That’s a problem for unhappy people. L: Which is why there’s said to be so much trouble with alcoholism, increased suicide rates, and such during the holidays. Doug: Yes, and even generally happy people can feel increased stress from the increasing financial demands of the season. It’s becoming like the potlatch tradition of the Northwestern Indians, where gift giving is a very strong social expectation. That can be problematic in hard times, when extra cash for buying nice presents for others can be tough to come by. In Dickens’s days, there was no expectation that you’d buy presents for everyone you know if you were a Cratchit. Today, it’s becoming an embarrassment to go see anyone during the holidays without a gift in hand. Recommended Links “This is the Biggest Accounting Hoax Since Enron” According to Jim Rickards, this could be 525 times bigger than Enron. All 300 million Americans are potential victims. Read More. L: I’m familiar with Scrooge McDuck, but not all of our readers might be, so perhaps you should fill them in on the Disney reference. Doug: Donald Duck is better known, but he had three nephews and a phenomenally wealthy uncle of his own, named Scrooge McDuck. Uncle Scrooge is one of the great heroes of Western literature. He’s a miser, but he’s innovative and an adventurer, with a very good heart. That’s shown in all of the stories about him – he didn’t have to be transformed, as Dickens’ Scrooge had to be; rather, it was an essential part of his character. I remember one story in which he took Donald and the boys on an adventure to Alaska – he was always taking Donald and the boys on fantastic adventures all around the world – and had to make a choice between saving his sled dog, Barko, and saving the sled, which had a treasure on it. He chose the dog, which was typical of him. This is a positive image, one I wish were much more celebrated than Dickens’s caricature. L: And he created value. How many jobs did Scrooge McDuck create, feeding families all around the world? He had mines, as I recall, and factories and office buildings, always clean and modern. Doug: That’s exactly right. Scrooge McDuck embodies the true, creative, life-giving spirit of the holiday, if you ask me. L: [Laughs] You don’t have children; do you actually deck the halls? Doug: Well, I’ll be in Buenos Aires this time, and it’s a bit odd to decorate a tree with tinsel or fake snow in the middle of South American summer, but sure, I’ll get a tree; why not? L: So, when people sneer at you for being a rich Scrooge, your reply, with pride, is: “Yes, but Scrooge McDuck!” Doug: Right. The right Scrooge, the sound one, is my model. Doug Casey is a multi-millionaire speculator and the founder of Casey Research. He literally wrote the book on profiting during economic turmoil. Doug’s book, Crisis Investing, spent multiple weeks as number one on The New York Times best sellers list and was the best-selling financial book of 1980. Doug has been a regular guest on national television, including spots on CNN, Merv Griffin, Charlie Rose, Regis Philbin, Phil Donahue, and NBC News. Doug and his team of analysts write The Casey Report, one of the world’s most respected investment advisories. Each month, The Casey Report provides specific, actionable ideas to help subscribers make money in stocks, bonds, currencies, real estate, and commodities. You can try out The Casey Report risk-free by clicking here. — Recommended Linkslast_img read more

Read more

The minister for disabled people has failed six ti

first_imgThe minister for disabled people has failed six times to explain which minister and government department campaigners should approach to lobby about the closure of the Independent Living Fund (ILF).Justin Tomlinson was asked by the disabled peer Baroness [Jane] Campbell to tell disabled people which minister had responsibility for ILF and “over-arching decision-making power” on the fallout from the fund’s closure.Tomlinson and two other ministers were giving evidence to the Equality Act 2010 and disability committee, which is conducting an inquiry for the House of Lords into the impact of the act on disabled people.Tomlinson (pictured, at the hearing) appeared to accept her suggestion that one department ought to have “ultimate responsibility” but he then told Baroness Campbell that it “depends on which angle you come from” if someone wanted to know which minister was responsible for the issue.He said the Department for Communities and Local Government was responsible for the local authorities that deliver social care; the Department of Health was responsible for policy relating to the Care Act 2014; his department, work and pensions, was responsible for former ILF-users and for keeping “a watching brief” and meeting with stakeholders; while the Treasury decided “ongoing funding”.ILF was funded by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), and when it closed on 30 June it was helping nearly 17,000 disabled people with the highest support needs to live independently.But ministers decided it should be scrapped, promising instead that nine months’ worth of non-ring-fenced funding would be transferred through DCLG to councils in England, and to devolved governments in Wales and Scotland.In her fourth attempt to secure an answer to her question, Baroness Campbell said: “Who do disabled people go to when they want to collaborate and to help with the reforms in this area?“Do you not think that this leaves disabled people confused and very much torn between departments?”In her fifth attempt to seek clarity, Baroness Campbell told Tomlinson: “We all know the UN committee has come over here because it was brought to their attention that the ILF and the [closure] decision was a possible contravention of article 19 [of the UN disability convention].“Obviously it is an incredibly important issue, so who is the minister responsible who makes the final decision on this?”Tomlinson said ministers “strongly contest the allegations that were made to the UN”, but he said the UN committee’s ongoing work was confidential.And he claimed that there were “stronger protections” for former ILF-users since the closure than there had been under the fund, which had been “discretionary”, and he said that “local provision was far better to match those local needs”.Two months ago, Disability News Service reported how more than a quarter of disabled people who previously received ILF support in one local authority area had had their social care packages cut by at least half since it closed.Baroness Campbell pushed Tomlinson for a sixth time, and asked: “Who would you advise the disability lobby to go to when they want to negotiate on the ILF?“Which minister, because it’s jolly well not fair to ask them to go to all four?”Tomlinson then repeated his explanation of the different roles played by the four departments.When she asked him if he was “monitoring” the ILF closure situation, he replied: “Very much.”Baroness Campbell asked the minister for women and equalities, Nicky Morgan – who is also the education secretary – what role the Government Equalities Office had played in the decision to close ILF.And she asked whether more “proactive” involvement by the GEO could have prevented the policy failures that led to the government losing the first judicial review of the closure decision in November 2013.Morgan promised to find out whether any GEO officials were involved in giving advice to DWP.But Tomlinson said DWP did not believe that greater involvement by GEO would have had an impact on the decision to close ILF.last_img read more

Read more

There are growing concerns and calls for an urgent

first_imgThere are growing concerns and calls for an urgent investigation into admissions by two police forces that they have shared information about protesters with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).BothLancashire and Greater Manchester police forces have now admitted passing oninformation to DWP about people taking part in protests.Theadmissions originally came following claims reported by Disability News Service(DNS) that police forces had been targeting disabled people taking part inpeaceful anti-fracking protests across England.Lancashirepolice then admittedin December that it had shared both information and videofootage of disabled anti-fracking protesters with DWP, in an apparent attemptto have their disability benefits removed.GreaterManchester Police (GMP) then told DNS that it had passed DWP information – butnot video footage – relating to protesters taking part in the anti-frackingprotests at Barton Moss, Salford.Thoseprotests took place in 2013 and 2014, but the force also confirmed that it hasshared information with DWP from protests not connected with fracking.There is nowgrowing confusion over how many forces are involved, what information they arehanding DWP, in what circumstances they hand it over and on what legal grounds,and whether this exchange of information is based on any written agreements.Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, Marsha de Cordova (pictured), called last night (Wednesday) for an investigation into the extent of information sharing between police forces and DWP.  Last week, GMPadmitted having a “sharing agreement” with DWP, even though the departmentexplicitly stated two months ago – and repeated this week – that it had no such“formal arrangement” with GMP or any other force.But GMP hasnow backtracked from this admission, claiming there is no “specific formalagreement or policy in place” after all, and stating that the sharing ofinformation that takes place between the two organisations is carried out underthe Data Protection Act.It hasdenied trying to cover up its relationship with DWP.Labour’sdeputy mayor for policing for Greater Manchester, Baroness [Bev] Hughes, backedher force’s decision to share information with DWP.She said theforce had “a duty to act if they judge that individuals may be breaking, orhave broken, the law”. She said: “Ihave consulted with senior officers within GMP who have assured me that thereis no formal ‘sharing agreement’ in place, and that the police act on a case bycase basis, sharing information in accordance with the Data Protection Act.“Protestorsin Greater Manchester should never be deterred from exercising their right toprotest. “Should theydo so in accordance with the law, GMP will continue to do as it always does andfacilitate such protests.”But deCordova said the sharing of information with DWP by police forces was “aviolation of trust”.She said:“This is yet further proof of the hostile environment that this Conservativegovernment has created for disabled people. “Thisviolation of trust is not only shocking but also could threaten disabledpeople’s access to vital social security. “There mustbe an urgent further investigation into the extent of information sharing andaction must be taken to end this harmful practice.”A DWPspokesperson said: “As we have reiterated previously, there is no formalarrangement with the police for this scenario. “The departmentdoes not request referrals from the police and there is no obligation on eitherthe police or members of the public to provide referrals.“In theevent we receive information from the police, we consider it on its merits.“As is thecase with any responsible government department, we stand ready to assist thepolice in the event they request information from us for the purposes of crimeprevention or detection. “Thisservice is provided under the Data Protection Act for the purposes ofpreventing and detecting crime.”Meanwhile,GMP said this week that it had not shared any information with DWP aboutdisabled activists who took part in the anti-austerity protests that took placeoutside the Conservative party conferences in Manchester in 2015 and 2017.The Conservative party is returning to Manchester for its annual conference in October.A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more

Read more

Facebook Now Allows Marijuana Businesses to Appear in Searches

first_img Easy Search. Quality Finds. Your partner and digital portal for the cannabis community. Social media is now a foundation of digital marketing strategy, but it’s a bit difficult to incorporate when the world’s largest social media platform doesn’t allow people to search for your products or services.That’s been the case with Facebook when it comes to cannabis-related businesses. The social media giant continues to allow people to post fake news at alarming rates, but until recently wouldn’t allow someone to search for marijuana products — even if they are legal in their state.But that all changed this fall.Related: State Regulators Consider Better Ways to Determine Who Controls Cannabis BusinessAbout-Face for FacebookFor months, Facebook blocked cannabis-related pages from user search results. The intent was to keep people from selling illegal products through the platform. However, it also led to them blocking such sites as the California Bureau of Cannabis Control and advocacy groups including the Marijuana Policy Project and the National Cannabis Industry Association. According to Market Watch, you also had situations where you could search “MPP” and find the Marijuana Policy Project page, but not if you actually searched for “Marijuana Policy Project.”Facebook finally decided in October to allow pages that have been verified by Facebook to appear in search results. That process involves an assessment of the company by Facebook and verification standards such as a publicly listed phone number.Related: Pass the Cannabis, Please: Marijuana Among Restaurant Trends for 2019Appease the gods.In Facebook’s defense, it is caught up in a situation that snags many other businesses — marijuana remains illegal at the federal level even as more states legalize it. Banks, for example, won’t extend financial services to marijuana companies.However, even with the new compromise, issues remain. Cannabrand CEO Olivia Mannix told Cannabis Business Times that it remains difficult to get verified by Facebook. She also said, “The way that I’m interpreting it is that you will be able to search for cannabis-related companies, [but] I don’t know if that’s actually going to alleviate any of the issues with cannabis-related companies getting flagged and shut down.”Perhaps the most practical outlook came from social media consultant Amy Donahue, who told Cannabis Business Times, “To me, business should be verified on Facebook anyway — that just makes you look more professional. … And if that’s what Facebook wants, then sometimes we have to appease the gods and do what they say.”Getting verified by Facebook involves supplying proof of business registration, validation of a business address or phone number, and proof of association with your business. Facebook provides a rundown of how to get verified here.Follow dispensaries.com on Instagram to stay up to date on the latest cannabis news. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Next Article Add to Queue Facebook Guest Writer Image credit: Westend61 | Getty Images –shares Keep up with the latest trends and news in the cannabis industry with our free articles and videos, plus subscribe to the digital edition of Green Entrepreneur magazine. 3 min read Facebook’s zeal for banning marijuana often made it impossible to find even regulatory agencies and advocacy groups. dispensaries.com November 27, 2018 Free Green Entrepreneur App Facebook Now Allows Marijuana Businesses to Appear in Searches Download Our Free Android Applast_img read more

Read more

Yahoo Unveils Massive New Encryption Scheme to Protect Users

first_img Next Article Register Now » Kim Lachance Shandrow Former West Coast Editor Alex Stamos –shares 4 min read Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Image credit: @TrustyCon/Twitter Add to Queue Security Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Alex Stamos doesn’t play when it comes to the NSA.In his first big hammer drop as Yahoo’s new cybersecurity watchdog, Stamos announced yesterday that he’s overseeing a massive “around the clock” effort to encrypt 100 percent of the tech giant’s traffic, including the private data of its 800 million-plus users — “at all time[s], by default.”Related: 4 Things to Know About Yahoo’s New Information Security VP Alex StamosOn the heels of reports that the NSA allegedly secretly snooped around thousands of its user accounts, the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company pledged to encrypt all of its data centers by March 31. Stamos and the “hundreds of Yahoos” in his charge made that vow a reality. Not bad for only four weeks on the job.  The San Francisco-based veteran information security expert and outspoken NSA critic officially announced the company’s newly bolstered encryption efforts on its Tumblr page yesterday.And Stamos made no bones about why the massive encryption project — which seriously steps up security for Yahoo data center traffic, Yahoo Homepage search queries, Yahoo! Mail and much more — is going down in the first place.“We will continue to work hard to deploy the best possible technology to combat attacks and surveillance that violate our users’ privacy,” Stamos wrote in a powerful, telling statement curiously buried as the last sentence in his Tumblr post.Make It Stop: Yahoo Reports Coordinated Email HackIt was clearly a dig at the NSA’s controversial PRISM surveillance program, which Yahoo recently reported requested to poke around in roughly 30,000 to 40,000 of its user accounts (between January and June last year) via Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) classified court orders. Yahoo arch rival Google said it was on the receiving end of FISC requests for information from approximately 9,000 and 10,000 of its user accounts around the same time.Here is Stamos’s complete bulleted list detailing Yahoo’s new beefed-up encryption efforts, directly from his Tumblr update: Traffic moving between Yahoo data centers is fully encrypted as of March 31. In January, we made Yahoo Mail more secure by making browsing over HTTPS the default. In the last month, we enabled encryption of mail between our servers and other mail providers that support the SMTPTLS standard. The Yahoo Homepage and all search queries that run on the Yahoo Homepage and most Yahoo properties also have HTTPS encryption enabled by default. We implemented the latest in security best-practices, including supporting TLS 1.2, Perfect Forward Secrecy and a 2048-bit RSA key for many of our global properties such as Homepage, Mail and Digital Magazines. We are currently working to bring all Yahoo sites up to this standard. Users can initiate an encrypted session for Yahoo News, Yahoo Sports, Yahoo Finance, and Good Morning America on Yahoo (gma.yahoo.com) by typing “https” before the site URL in their web browser. A new, encrypted, version of Yahoo Messenger will be deployed in coming months. April 3, 2014 Related: Young Millionaire: Inside the Mind of Yahoo’s Teen Sensation Nick D’AloisioStamos’s work doesn’t end with this list, though. Not as long as cyber attackers and government spies seek to snoop around Yahoo’s insides, which we don’t expect to stop any time soon.”This isn’t a project where we’ll ever check a box and be ‘finished,'” he said. “Our fight to protect our users and their data is an on-going and critical effort.”Yahoo did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Yahoo Unveils Massive New Encryption Scheme to Protect Userslast_img read more

Read more

Compounded pain relief creams not effective finds study

first_imgImage Credit: Africa Studio / Shutterstock By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDFeb 6 2019A new study has shown that pain relief creams are no better than dummy or placebo creams when it comes to relieving pain. The study titled, “Compounded Topical Pain Creams to Treat Localized Chronic Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial,” was published in the latest issue of the journal Annals of Internal Medicine. These pain relief creams are prescribed to be applied locally over localized pain sites for pain relief explain the researchers. They come at a relatively high cost but are not better than placebo creams they add. The experts add that there have been concerns regarding the safety of pain relievers and also side effects and abuse potential of opioid pain relievers. This has raised the prescriptions for these compounded pain relievers with no real data regarding their superior efficacy or safety. They have appealed to prescribers as well as users due to the perception of their low rates of side effects due to topical use.This study is a randomized controlled trial from the researchers at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The team included 399 patients with either localized pain that was diagnosed to be due to nerve damage or neuropathic (total of 133 patients) or nociceptive pain or pain due to tissue injury (not nerves) (total of 133 patients) or mixed type of pain (133 patients). The groups were further divided into two and one half was given pain cream compounded specifically for their type of pain or a placebo or dummy cream. The drugs used in the compounded creams were FDA approved and routinely used for pain relief. This included agents such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and muscle relaxants (such as “ketoprofen, baclofen, cyclobenzaprine, and lidocaine”) for nociceptive pain and anticonvulsants and others (“ketamine, gabapentin, clonidine, and lidocaine”) for nerve pain. For the mixed pain treatment group compounds with “ketamine, gabapentin, diclofenac, baclofen, cyclobenzaprine, and lidocaine” were used.Related StoriesResearchers survey orthopedic providers to understand factors that drive opioid prescribing practicesStudy shows potential culprit behind LupusEngineered stem cells offer new treatment for metastatic bone cancerPain sensation was evaluated, a month after prescription of the creams. Results showed that there was no significant difference in improvement in pain symptoms with use of compounded pain creams compared to placebo creams. Around 28 percent participants in the placebo group and 36 percent participants in the pain cream group reported pain alleviation. This difference was not deemed to be significant enough for use of pain creams, write the researchers. Further, the compounded pain creams were most expensive compared to other creams, the authors add. Small benefits seen with these creams, they add, are due to the effects on the peripheral nervous system and not due to effects on the central nervous system.Senior study author Dr. Steven Cohen, a pain researcher at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, and Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore in a statement said, “We know from other studies that some of the agents (lidocaine, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) may be effective for certain types of acute and chronic pain, so it is surprising that the difference here did not reach statistical significance in any of the pain types…This matters because compounded pain creams are much more expensive than prescribed (lidocaine, diclofenac) or over-the-counter (capsaicin) pain creams, but they didn’t provide meaningful benefit compared to placebo cream.” Authors conclude that these compounded pain relieving creams should not be prescribed routinely for treatment of pain.The study was funded and supported by the Centers for Rehabilitation Sciences Research, Defense Health Agency, U.S. Department of Defense.center_img Source:https://annals.org/aim/article-abstract/2724041/compounded-topical-pain-creams-treat-localized-chronic-pain-randomized-controlledlast_img read more

Read more

Prophylactic cranial irradiation used as standard approach for patients with NSCLC

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 19 2019Prophylactic cranial irradiation (PCI), a technique used to prevent the clinical development of brain metastases, is established as a standard approach for many patients with small cell lung cancer (SCLC) after initial therapy. While studies established that PCI decreases the incidence of brain metastases for patients with locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer (LA-NSCLC), there is no established indication for its use for such NSCLC patients.Cumulative brain metastases (BM) rates are high for patients with LA-NSCLC. NRG Oncology conducted the NRG-RTOG 0214 trial to address this high incidence of brain metastases and determine if the addition of PCI following primary treatment improved overall survival (OS) in patients with LA-NSCLC. This trial also evaluated changes in disease-free survival (DFS) and brain metastases rates. At 5 and 10 years, PCI did not improve survival in patients with stage III LA-NSCLC without progression of disease after therapy, however, DFS increased and BM rates decreased considerably, thus providing important information that could benefit future trials. The long-term update of this trial was recently published in JAMA Oncology.Patients in NRG-RTOG 0214 were randomly assigned either to observation or to receive PCI in 2Gy per fraction over five days a week up to 30Gy. This occurred at 291 institutions globally. Patients in the PCI study arm were followed beginning at 3 and 6 months from the start of PCI, then every 6 months for 2 years, then yearly. Brain imaging with MRI or CT was performed at 6 and 12 months, then yearly340 patients were evaluable at 5 and 10 years. OS rates on the study arm that received PCI were not statistically better than the observation arm (HR=0.82, p= 012, 10-year rates: 17.6% and 13.3%, respectively), however, DFS improved significantly (HR=0.76, p= 003, 10-year rates 12.6% vs. 7.5% for PCI vs. observation) as well as BM rates (p=0004, 10-year rates 16.7% vs. 28.3% for PCI vs. observation). Patients in the PCI study arm were 57% less likely to develop BM than those in the observation arm (HR=0.43, 95% CI=0.24-0.77).Related StoriesNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerBacteria in the birth canal linked to lower risk of ovarian cancerResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairA subgroup analysis of 225 patients on this trial who did not have surgery of their primary lung tumor exhibited statistically significant differences in OS, DFS, and BM rates between the PCI treatment arm and the observation arm. This analysis suggests PCI may prolong OS in this subgroup, as the median survival time of 2.3 years on the PCI arm compared favorably to 1.9 years on the observation arm (p=0.027). Multivariable analysis within this patient population suggests PCI may effectively prolong OS (HR=0.73, p=004) and DFS (HR=0.70, p=001), and decreases BM (HR=0.34, p=0002).”As the incidence of brain metastases rise in patients living longer with improved control of loco-regional and distant disease, the need to establish an accepted means of prevention of brain metastases remains important. Researchers need to identify the appropriate patient population and a safe intervention on future trials,” stated Alexander Sun, MD, of the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University Health Network’s Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and corresponding author of NRG-RTOG 0214. Source:https://www.nrgoncology.org/News/Research-Results/Prophylactic-Cranial-Irradiation-Improves-Disease-Free-Survival-and-Brain-Metastasis-Rates-for-Locally-Advanced-Non-Small-Cell-Lung-Cancerlast_img read more

Read more

Not drinking water may increase childrens consumption of sugary drinks

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Apr 22 2019Kids and young adults who drink no water throughout the day may consume twice the amount of calories from sugary drinks than those who drink water, according to Penn State researchers.Asher Rosinger, assistant professor of biobehavioral health and director of the Water, Health, and Nutrition Lab, said the results — published today (Apr. 22) in the Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics– underscore the importance of children having free access to clean water.”Kids should consume water every single day, and the first beverage option for kids should be water,” Rosinger said. “Because if they’re not drinking water, they’re probably going to replace it with other beverages, like sugar sweetened beverages, that are less healthy and have more calories.”According to Rosinger, sugar-sweetened beverages includes soda, sweetened fruit juices, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened tea and coffee drinks. They do not include 100 percent fruit juices, drinks sweetened with zero-calorie sweeteners, or drinks that are sweetened by the consumer, like coffee or tea brewed at home.Rosinger added that while other research has shown an overall decline in the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, there are still subpopulations of kids in the U.S. who are more likely to consume sugary drinks. He and his collaborators wanted to better understand how many kids drink water on a given day, how many do not, and how their caloric intake from sugar-sweetened beverages differ.The researchers used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a nationally representative data set that includes information on 8,400 children between the ages of two and 19. Data included information about the children’s water and sugar-sweetened beverage consumption, as well as calories from sugary drinks and the percent of total calories coming from sugary drinks.Related StoriesGuidelines to help children develop healthy habits early in lifeResearch reveals genetic cause of deadly digestive disease in childrenRepurposing a heart drug could increase survival rate of children with ependymomaAfter analyzing the data, the researchers found that on a given day, about 20 percent of children reported drinking no water. Additionally, those children consumed almost twice as many calories from sugar-sweetened beverages — about 200 calories total — than children who did drink water.Rosinger said that while an extra 200 calories may not seem like a lot, it can add up quickly if someone is drinking sugar-sweetened beverages on a regular basis.”What you have to remember is that an extra 3,500 calories equals one pound of weight gain,” Rosinger said. “So if you’re not compensating for those extra calories, then over a month, you can potentially gain a pound. Over several months, that could add up.”Additionally, the researchers found that while the United States Department of Agriculture recommends that no more than 10 percent of a person’s daily calories should come from added sugars, the children who did not drink any water on a given day tended to exceed this limit from sugary drinks.Rosinger said that while urging people to drink water is important, there are many reasons why kids may not drink any or enough water during the day.”It’s important to note that in parts of the U.S., some people may not trust their water due to lead or other contamination,” Rosinger said. “Water insecurity is a growing problem in the U.S., so we need to keep that in mind as important context, especially when it comes to parents who may be giving their kids soda or juice because they distrust the water.”In the future, Rosinger wants to explore possible interventions to help boost water intake in children.Hilary Bethancourt, a postdoctoral scholar in the Water, Health, and Nutrition Lab in biobehavioral health, and Lori A. Francis, associate professor of biobehavioral health, collaborated on this research. Source:https://news.psu.edu/story/569568/2019/04/22/research/not-drinking-water-may-boost-kids-consumption-sugary-beverageslast_img read more

Read more

Chandan Mitra quits BJP may join Trinamool with 4 Congress MLAsChandan Mitra

first_img COMMENT SHARE SHARE EMAIL Published on Former Rajya Sabha MP and Editor of The Pioneer, Chandan Mitra, has quit the BJP and will reportedly join the Trinamool Congress along with four Congress MLAs on July 21.“I have sent my resignation to the party president,” Mitra told BusinessLine, although he did not confirm if would join the TMC.Trinamool sources, however, said Mitra would be the “big catch” in the TMC’s annual Martyr’s Day rally.Mitra was a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha during 2003-2009, after which the BJP got him elected to the Upper House from Madhya Pradesh. His tenure ended in 2016. Mitra had also contested the 2014 Lok Sabha polls from Hooghly, and came in third.He had reportedly met Mamata Banerjee, who is seeking a bigger role for herself in national politics. Mitra, who runs a newspaper in Delhi, is an articulate member of the city’s literati and can be a useful asset to Banerjee in the Capital.Leading the pack of four Congress MLAs is Mainul Haque, a five-term MLA from Farakka in Murshidabad district. Murshidabad, a Congress bastion where the party won 14 of the district’s 22 seats, now has only six MLAs from the Grand Old Party. The TMC, which had won 4 seats in 2016, now has 12 MLAs from the district. No action has been taken against those who crossed over under the anti-defection law. July 18, 2018 Former Rajya Sabha MP Chandan Mitracenter_img West Bengal state politics SHARE COMMENTSlast_img read more

Read more

Violence erupts in University college campus in Thiruvananthapuram student stabbed

first_imgViolence erupts in University college campus in Thiruvananthapuram; student stabbedA case has been registered against six students, including college union leaders of the Students Federation of India (SFI), police said.advertisement Press Trust of India ThiruvananthapuramJuly 12, 2019UPDATED: July 12, 2019 23:37 IST Students of University College protested outside the college after a 3rd year student got stabbed in a clash. (Photo: ANI)Violence erupted in the University college campus here with a student being stabbed Friday morning, police said. Akhil, a third-year Political Science student, who was sitting under a tree along with friends, was stabbed on the chest.The injured student was rushed to the Trivandrum medical college hospital. Hospital sources said he would have to undergo surgery due to internal bleeding, but that his condition was stable.Three other students were also injured in the attack. Angry students demanded immediate arrest of the accused. They said Akhil was singing a song, which irked the SFI students.A case has been registered against six students, including college union leaders of the Students Federation of India (SFI), police said.”We have also registered a case against around 20 unidentified students in connection with the incident,” an investigating officer told PTI.The incident was a sequel to a dispute between two groups of students belonging to the pro-CPI(M) students wing.Soon after the incident, angry students squatted on the road in front of the college gate and raised slogans, demanding justice.Akhil also belongs to the SFI. “We have searched the campus for the accused, but they were not there. We will conduct further searches at various other places tonight,” police said.Opposition Leader Ramesh Chennithala lashed out at the students’ wing of the CPI(M) and said the latest attack on the student showed the “terror face” of SFI.”The SFI, which never allows any other student organisation to work inside the University College, has now turned towards its own workers.This exposes the fascist attitude of SFI,” he said in a release.The Left government has asked the Education Department to submit a report on the issue.Meanwhile, BJP state President P S Sreedharan Pillai also attacked the ruling CPI(M) and its student organisation and said no action has taken against such attacks, despite complaints by students.University College, Thiruvananthapuram is one of the oldest and most prestigious institutions of higher education in India, established in 1866 to impart English education to the common folk of erstwhile Travancore by Sri Ayilyam Thirunal Rama Varma Maharaja.Also Read | West Bengal: TMC leader Sofiul Hasan shot dead in MurshidabadAlso Watch | BJP is using money power: Abhishek Manu Singhvi on Karnataka crisisFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byChanchal Chauhan Nextlast_img read more

Read more