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Minister Valcourt unaware of residential school document destruction denial policy

first_imgJorge BarreraAPTN National NewsAboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt says he’s unaware of an internal analysis drafted by his department outlining Ottawa’s position to officially deny Indian residential school documents were ever intentionally destroyed.Valcourt faced questions from the NDP during question period Thursday following an APTN National News story based on an Aboriginal Affairs internal analysis describing the reason behind Ottawa’s policy to claim missing residential school documents were accidentally destroyed.The department’s analysis said an admission that residential school documents were ever intentionally destroyed would open the federal government to litigation.Compensation payments to residential school survivors under the multi-billion dollar settlement agreement are largely based on historical records proving students attended the institutions.Over 50,000 survivors have failed to obtain their claimed compensation because no historical record existed proving they attended the schools.Valcourt said he was not aware the department had drafted an analysis on the issue.“If my department issued such a document officially, show it to me,” said Valcourt, in an interview.APTN National News forwarded the document to the minister’s office, which claimed it did not reflect government policy and was written by a junior bureaucrat.“The document in question was a draft written by a junior staffer. It does not reflect the government’s views,” said Valcourt’s spokesperon Jason MacDonald.MacDonald, however, did not state what exactly the government’s views were in respect to the destruction of residential school documents.Download (PDF, Unknown)Indian residential school documents were pulped and incinerated as a result of three major rounds of government-wide document destruction directives issued between 1936 and 1973.Valcourt seemed perturbed by the NDP’s line of questioning during QP and appeared to believe B.C. MP Jean Crowder, the party’s Aboriginal affairs critic, was accusing the Harper government of destroying documents.“Well 1939, I was not here, this government was not here, we did not destroy documents,” he said. “Unless the genius of the NDP can resurrect 1939 documents, there is nothing I can do.”The federal government maintains that none of these documents were ever purposely destroyed, but fell victim to floods and fires, according to an Aboriginal Affairs analysis recently obtained by the National Residential School Survivor Society through the Access to Information Act.“The government of Canada has taken the position that there was no deliberate destruction of student records and residential school documents and that documents were destroyed as a result of institutions that burnt down or were flooded,” says a departmental analysis from 2009. “The admission of the deliberate destruction of student records and documents might spur further legal action against the government of Canada.”The analysis was triggered by a report issued by the National Residential School Survivor Society which took issue with the missing paper trails that left many residential school survivors receiving far less in compensation than they initially claimed because they couldn’t prove how many years they actually attended the school.Under the multi-billion dollar residential school settlement, $1.9 billion was set aside for “Common Experience Payments” which were based on the number of years former students attended the schools.A separate, Independent Assessment Process, was created to deal with compensation for abuse suffered at the schools.Crowder said it was troubling Aboriginal Affairs appeared to have such a limited grasp over the issue of historical residential school documents.“If the department doesn’t have a handle on whether documents were destroyed or not, then there are serious repercussions for survivors if documents were destroyed because we know those documents were relied on for compensation,” said Crowder.The federal government is already stinging from this week’s release of the spring Auditor General’s report which chided Aboriginal Affairs and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission over their handling of the transfer of existing residential school documents.With the TRC facing the end of its mandate in a little over a year, it’s still unclear how much it will cost to gather all the remaining documents, who will pay for it or even what documents are “relevant.” read more

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Manitoba chief says woman tried to blackmail him over images sent from Peguis Chief Glenn Hudson says he is the victim of attempted extortion over an image on his phone. (APTN)Kathleen MartensAPTN NewsThe chief of Manitoba’s biggest first nation says someone tried to blackmail him over images that were sent from his phone in a speech in March during the community’s band election.“They threatened me. They threatened my family,” Glenn Hudson said in video of the speech that was posted to Facebook and recently shared with APTN News.Hudson was re-elected to serve four more years as chief of Peguis First Nation in April.APTN left several messages asking Hudson to comment further but he did not respond.The band’s director of communications, Dwayne Bird, also didn’t reply to an email seeking more information.In the video, Hudson said “a young lady” demanded $1,000 or threatened to release a photo of a man’s penis to his election opponents.APTN has learned the photo was sent from Hudson’s phone to a second woman – allegedly by accident.But she told friends about it – one of whom saw it as an opportunity to allegedly extort the chief.Hudson said the woman upped her demand to $1,500 the next day.So he called police.“You can’t allow people to do that,” he said, noting his wife was in full agreement.“She’s said, ‘Charge her,’” Hudson said in the speech. “Otherwise they’re going to continue to do that.”Hudson said the blackmailer backed down and apologized after police arrived.A copy of part of a texting conversation on the phone of Peguis Chief Glenn Hudson. (APTN)Copies of the original messages between Hudson and the second woman in January were posted on Facebook and shared with APTN.APTN is not naming the woman, who was not involved in the blackmail scheme and expressed shock at seeing the photo of a man’s penis that popped up on her screen.“What is that a picture of?” the woman texted to Hudson.“You just sent me a obscene picture.”“Idk (I don’t know) where?” Hudson texted back. “I don’t see anything on my phone.“What crazy must be hacked,” he added.Claiming his phone was ‘hacked’ is the same defence used by Grand Chief Arlen Dumas, who is on leave of absence from the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs after his own texting scandal broke earlier this month.Dumas said someone impersonated him on Facebook Messenger and in cellphone texts despite the texts appearing to come from a phone number that belonged to him.He said “spoof” texts can “make a message appear to come from one cell phone number when, in fact, they originate from another.”Hudson, who co-nominated Dumas for the position of grand chief two years ago, offers alternative theories for the penis photo sent from his phone, including that he hit a wrong button and asked the woman to delete it.He also refused to answer questions about the Dumas texting story from APTN at a recent event.“Promise that you erase that stupid video pic,” he told the woman by message.“Was sent by mistake in hitting a button I guess.”It is not illegal for adults to share nude photos unless the pictures are accompanied by threats or involve child pornography.“Guys shared stupid stuff even to me,” Hudson texted.“I’m sorry. Never do that kinda things.”The Peguis band council released a statement expressing confidence in Dumas following the texting revelation.The community, 170 kilometres north of Winnipeg, has a sexual harassment policy, but it applies to employees – not elected officials.last_img read more

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UN officials call on Chinese business leaders to utilize technology for development

“Development is no longer the sole responsibility of governments and non-governmental organizations,” Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Sha Zukang told a group of more than 40 Chinese executives gathered in New York. “We also need to harness the collective strength of private sector entities in support of our development efforts. We therefore consider you as an indispensable stakeholder in the fight against poverty, illiteracy and disease.” Speaking at a panel on the role of information and communication technology (ICT) to address development problems, Mr. Sha said that “ICT connects the world and can give everyone a voice. It can aid education through distance learning, content creation and teacher training. It can empower women by helping them to acquire new skills, create business enterprises and create wealth.” Sarbuland Khan, the Executive Coordinator of the UN Global Alliance for ICT and Development, said the Alliance provides an opportunity for private sector executives from China to express their views on how to minimize poverty in China, India and across the developing world. “You can take advantage of our platform to become more profitable, but also to contribute to the reduction of poverty,” he noted. Participants agreed that bolstering information technology can serve to improve quality of life, and that the provision of training is in the best interest of corporations. Some attendees cited impediments to the spread of technology, such as the lack of appropriate software and computer illiteracy. The panel was part of an all-day meeting, organized by Friendship Across Frontier and the UN Global Alliance for ICT and Development, which brought together Chinese and United States executives to discuss bilateral economic relations, trends in business and technology, and strategies in steering private Chinese companies into the global business arena. 24 August 2007United Nations officials yesterday called on top Chinese executives to utilize information technology to improve the plight of poor people in their home country and around the world. read more

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Army police used schools during war – Report

“The moment troops establish a base inside a school, they can turn it into a target for attack,” said Diya Nijhowne, director of the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack. “When soldiers use schools and universities they are often putting their own convenience over the safety and education of students.”The countries with reported military use of education institutions between 2005 and October 2012 are: Afghanistan, Burma/Myanmar, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia, India, Iraq, Israel/Occupied Palestinian Territory, Libya, Mali, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Thailand, Uganda, and Yemen. The 77-page study, “Lessons In War: Military Use of Schools and Other Education Institutions during Conflict”, examines the use of schools and other education institutions for military purposes by government armed forces and opposition or pro-government armed groups during times of armed conflict or insecurity. Schools are used for barracks, logistics bases, operational headquarters, weapons and ammunition caches, detention and interrogation centers, firing and observation positions, and recruitment grounds. A new report released today says both the army and police used schools during the war against the LTTE.Between January 2005 and October 2012, the study found, armed forces and armed groups used education institutions in at least 24 countries, a substantial majority of the countries with armed conflicts during this period. The list included countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and South America. The use of schools and other education institutions for military purposes by armed forces and non-state armed groups during wartime endangers students and their education around the world, said the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack in the study released today. The Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA) is an alliance of United Nations agencies and organizations from the fields of education in emergencies, higher education, international human rights, and international humanitarian law, dedicated to addressing the problem of attacks on students, teachers, schools, and universities during armed conflict. GCPEA is governed by a steering committee made up of Education Above All, Human Rights Watch, Save the Children International, Scholar Rescue Fund, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). “Lessons In War: Military Use of Schools and Other Education Institutions during Conflict” is the result of an independent external study commissioned by GCPEA. It is independent of the individual member organizations of the Steering Committee of GCPEA and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Steering Committee member organizations. read more

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UN officials voice shock and dismay at deadly Israeli shelling of Gaza

In a statement issued by his spokesman, Mr. Annan took note of the reported announcement by Israel of a full investigation and said he looked forward to its early results. He also called on the Palestinians to halt attacks against Israeli targets.Mr. Annan told reporters later that in telephone calls over the weekend he had urged Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to exercise maximum restraint and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to stop the rocket attacks. He added that he hoped measures would be taken to avoid a re-occurrence of today’s shelling.The Security Council President for November, Ambassador Jorge Voto-Bernales of Peru, summoned the 15-member body for urgent consultations on the situation, including today’s shelling of the residential area in Beit Hanoun. “Only last Friday, the Secretary-General expressed his deep concern about the rising death toll caused by the Israeli military operation in northern Gaza, given that such operations inevitably cause civilian casualties,” Mr. Annan’s spokesman said. “The Secretary-General reminds both sides of their obligations under international humanitarian law regarding the protection of civilians in armed conflict.”UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Alvaro de Soto said he was “deeply shocked and appalled” by the shelling.“The UN Special Coordinator cannot but express his condemnation and call upon the Israeli Government to call off these and other military operations with delay,” he said in a statement, also calling on the Palestinian side to cease attacks against Israeli targets.“This morning’s tragedy is yet more evidence, if any were needed, of the necessity to end this futile and provocative cycle of violence,” the head of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) which cares for Palestinian refugees, Karen AbuZayd, said in a statement. Noting that only yesterday she visited Beit Hanoun shortly after Israeli forces left the area following a six-day occupation and saw “first hand the despair of people trying to come to terms with death and destruction on a scale not seen in Gaza for many years,” she too voiced “shock and dismay at the killing of yet more Palestine refugees.”In a related development an independent UN human rights expert today called on the Security Council to take “urgent action” on what he called Israel’s “brutal collective punishment of a people” in Gaza. “The Quartet, comprising the United Nations, the European Union, the United States and the Russian Federation, has done little to halt Israel’s attacks,” John Dugard, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, said in a statement today.“Worse still, the Security Council has failed to adopt any resolution on the subject or attempt to restore peace to the region. The time has come for urgent action on the part of the Security Council. Failure to act at this time will seriously damage the reputation of the Security Council,” he added.Special Rapporteurs are unpaid independent advisory experts with a mandate from the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council. The Quartet has promoted the so-called Road Map peace plan which calls for Israelis and Palestinians to live side-by-side in two States, originally by the end of last year. “On 25 June 2006 Israel embarked on a military operation in Gaza that has resulted in over 300 deaths, including many civilians; over 1,000 injuries; large-scale devastation of public facilities and private homes; the destruction of agricultural lands; the disruption of hospitals, clinics and schools; the denial of access to adequate electricity, water and food; and the occupation and imprisonment of the people of Gaza,” Mr. Dugard said.“This brutal collective punishment of a people, not a government, has passed largely unnoticed by the international community,” he added. read more

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Ban reiterates support to establish nuclear weaponfree zone in Middle East

The Conference, also backed by Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, would take place next year in Finland, and would be facilitated by the Finnish Under-Secretary of State, Jaakko Laajava.“I have worked closely with the co-conveners to support the facilitator, Mr. Jaakko Laajava,” Mr. Ban said in a statement issued by his spokesperson.“He has conducted intensive consultations with the States of the region to prepare the convening of the conference in 2012. I have also personally engaged with the States of the region at the highest level to underline the importance of the Conference in promoting long-term regional stability, peace and security on the basis of equality.” Mr. Ban stressed that organizing States have a collective responsibility to make every effort to convene the conference as mandated, and said he would continue to work with them on that basis. He also noted his full support for the proposal put forward by Mr. Laajava to conduct multilateral consultations in the shortest possible time to allow the conference to be held in early 2013.“I encourage all States of the region to continue their constructive engagement with the facilitator,” Mr. Ban said. “I also appeal to them to seize this rare opportunity to initiate a process that entails direct engagement on security issues – a critical shortcoming at the moment – and follow-on steps leading to achieving the complete elimination of all weapons of mass destruction in the region, nuclear, chemical and biological and their delivery systems.”The May 2010 review meeting of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) – which takes place every five years – called for a UN-sponsored conference to establish a nuclear-free Middle East to be attended by all States in the region.Ahead of the 2010 meeting, Mr. Ban had called for the number of nuclear-weapon-free zones to multiply and ultimately span the globe. “My goal – our goal – is to make the whole world a nuclear-weapon-free zone,” he stated, calling such zones the “success stories of the disarmament movement.”Currently, there are five such zones: Latin America and the Caribbean; the South Pacific; South-East Asia; Central Asia; and Africa. read more

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Pryors flashy legacy on the line with Bucks

For Terrelle Pryor, the Sugar Bowl is bigger than busting Ohio State’s 0-9 slump against the SEC in bowl games or redeeming the Big Ten after its horrid, winless New Year’s Day bowl performance. The junior quarterback’s mental toughness and his ability to fight through adversity will be on display. If he fails to rise to the occasion, it will harm his legacy, something that Pryor speaks so fondly about. In his attempts to rally the spirit of the Buckeye faithful, Pryor has boasted that he’ll get his “jersey hung up” at Ohio Stadium and that he “wants to leave a legacy here.” Apparently whatever legacy of success Pryor has at OSU is neatly displayed on some guy’s mantel, rather than at the Horseshoe. After the public learned of the Buckeye players’ five-game suspensions for improper benefits, including selling awards and receiving discounted tattoos, the legacy of selfish behavior seems to be the only one they’re leaving behind. That’s certainly not what Pryor implied originally. Of course, Pryor is not the only Buckeye guilty of selling out tradition for personal gain, but he obviously is the most prominent of the bunch and the most oft criticized. ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit is seemingly Pryor’s most public and outspoken critic. The former Buckeye quarterback ripped Pryor for his sideline demeanor during games, to which Pryor responded by calling Herbstreit a “fake Buckeye” on Twitter. That’s coming from the “true” Buckeye in Pryor — if “true” Buckeyes hock their hard-earned, team-oriented rewards for cash and tattoos. At the end of the day, showcasing your “school pride” with a giant Block “O” tattoo that looks like a 4-year-old scribbled it in crayon doesn’t sound like it’s worth the price to me. That may sound harsh, but it’s tame in comparison to Herbstreit’s blanket statements about Pryor’s award-selling controversy, such as, “You wonder how much involvement he had in this, if he was the ringleader in this.” I, meanwhile, can’t help but wonder why Herbstreit’s obnoxious Byers Auto Group commercials on local TV label him an “MVP quarterback.” Is it his memorable 8-3-1 1992 campaign as OSU’s starter? Is it referring to his legendary days in Centerville’s peewee league? Whatever the case may be, he’s certainly the “MVP” of hyperbole when it comes to trying to prove to college football fans that he’s not a biased Buckeye. If Pryor’s saltiness toward his critics in harsh times is any indication of how he’ll play on the field, it doesn’t look too good. The tweet parade doesn’t stop with Herbstreit, as Pryor even addressed the rumors of getting improper benefits before the suspensions were passed down. “I paid for my tattoos. Go Bucks,” Pryor posted on his personal Twitter feed. That tweet mysteriously and conveniently disappeared a day later. Evidently, he’s taking public relations lessons from his “mentor” LeBron James. In the face of all the criticism, the Sugar Bowl presents an opportunity for OSU and, most importantly, for Pryor. It’s a challenge more demanding than a last-second drive to beat Wisconsin in Madison. Essentially, it’s steeper than any challenge he’s faced in his career. A singular, heroic, final-minute drive defines just a season. How Pryor and his fellow Buckeyes respond to the public backlash will define their entire careers. If Pryor replicates his winning performance from last year’s Rose Bowl and makes good on his promise to return next season, his decaying legacy can be salvaged. OSU currently has a 30-3 record with him as a starter, and that sparkling record on his résumé will stand out even more with a strong end to his career. However, if he’s not able to steer the Buckeyes through its most trying time in the Jim Tressel era, he’s an outcast, much like Herbstreit appears to be within the Buckeye community. Starting with this Sugar Bowl, we will find out if Pryor’s closer to Archie Griffin or Maurice Clarett in OSU lore. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about the nimble-footed quarterback, however, it’s not to count him out when the weight of the world is seemingly on his shoulders. Look no further than the fourth-and-10 against Iowa earlier this season. read more

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Royal Ballet musical director steps in to save the day only for

When the harpist of the Royal Opera House failed to turn up to a performance of Swan Lake, the perfect stand-in appeared to be waiting in the wings.As panic reigned backstage, Koen Kessels, the musical director of the Royal Ballet, bravely stepped forward and decided to accompany the orchestra on the piano himself.However his impromptu performance did not go entirely to plan.Some audience members walked out, while others complained about wrong notes played on an out of tune piano.Mr Kessels grew up playing the piano, but by his own admission lacked the “genius” required to be a world-leading concert pianist. “I can be disciplined when I’m obsessive about something, but I wasn’t truly obsessive about the piano,” he has said. Dancers on stage in the Royal Ballet production of Swan Lake Conductor and harp stand-in KesselsCredit:JACQUES DEMARTHON/AFP “Koen Kessels is a conductor, he’s not a pianist, he’s not a concert pianist. He’s an orchestra conductor.“Getting a harpist in time wasn’t feasible.  A harpist did come in but didn’t make it in time for the start.“The harp is a very distinctive instrument and there was just one in the orchestra. It’s not like a violin where having one missing we could recover.“In Swan Lake the harp has a moment in Act II.“Things like this happen rarely and normally you can get somebody in to cover, there are systems in place to get people in.“But in this instance there was difficulty getting someone in at the right moment.“It’s difficult getting someone across London in time. If somebody is unwell we usually have more notice.“It was a rare and extraordinary circumstance.” The piano he played is usually reserved for warming up performers rather than a concert grand.Some audience members reportedly walked out on hearing that there was no harp available and the part would be played on the piano.One member of the audience said that “those of us who stayed witnessed piano playing with lots of wrong notes, on an instrument in desperate need of tuning.” However, others praised Mr Kessels’s last-minute rendition. “That was the performance I loved best out of four Swan Lakes I saw during this run”, said another audience member.“Obviously I noticed, because the famous harp bit was played on the piano, but I still enjoyed the performance”, they said.A harpist was eventually found and arrived in time to play Acts III and IV.  The confusion led to show finishing around 25 minutes later than planned.Mr Kessels studied at the Royal Conservatoire in Antwerp and made his conducting debut at the Royal Ballet with a 2008 production of The Nutcracker.He is the music director of the Birmingham Royal Ballet, and was appointed to the same post at the Royal Ballet in the 2015/16 season. Dancers on stage in the Royal Ballet production of Swan LakeCredit:Alastair Muir/amx A spokesman for the Royal Opera House said: “It was a particularly unusual circumstance caused by a scheduling mix up”. He instead chose to be a conductor, after a friend told him that conductors are “the only one who doesn’t play an instrument”.This was not the case in this performance on June 8, as Mr Kessels doggedly got through the celebrated harp cadenza and the violin solo with harp accompaniment.After Act I went ahead without a harp, the Belgian conductor was literally waiting in the wings to step in for Act II and played a piano on the side of the stage, as there was not time to get one into the pit. Conductor and harp stand-in Kessels Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

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David Schwimmer spoofs beer thief lookalike in video response to Blackpool police

Ross from friends lookalike video  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Friends star David Schwimmer (right) spoofed the beer thief lookalike (left) in a video response to Blackpool PoliceCredit:Blackpool Police/@DavidSchwimmer  He signed off the tweet with the hashtag “It wasn’t me”, and wished officers in Blackpool the best of luck with their investigation. Following numerous responses, Lancashire Constabulary replied: “Thank you to everyone for your speedy responses.”We have investigated this matter thoroughly and have confirmed that David Schwimmer was in America on this date.”We’re so sorry it has to be this way.”The story eventually reached Schwimmer in the US, who posted a video of him in an American supermarket carrying a crate of cans down an aisle.  Officers, I swear it wasn’t me.As you can see, I was in New York.To the hardworking Blackpool Police, good luck with the investigation.#itwasntme— schwim (@DavidSchwimmer) October 24, 2018 David Schwimmer has responded after social media users drew attention to an alleged thief who bears a resemblance to his character in the sitcom Friends.Police in Blackpool had posted on Facebook asking for witnesses to identify a suspect pictured leaving a restaurant carrying what appeared to be a carton of cans.Facebook users quickly piled into the comments section, pointing out the suspect’s likeness to Schwimmer’s character Ross Geller in the well-loved US show.The alleged theft happened on September 20, the post said. read more

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Adrok announces new investments to fund expansion

first_imgAdrok, the Scottish “virtual drilling’ technology” development company has announced expansion plans which will see the company invest almost £1.8million in new staff and equipment over the next two years. Edinburgh-based Adrok has been awarded a Scottish Enterprise Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) grant of £180,000 to support the company’s investment plans. By 2015, Adrok is aiming to hire 15 new staff in Edinburgh, increase the number of crews and equipment, and further improve technology to boost its international offering.Adrok are creators of the Atomic Dielectric Resonance (ADR) scanner, which uses radiowaves and microwaves to locate, identify and map subsurface natural resources to help exploration and production companies decide where to drill for resource deposits. The company states: “Unlike traditional seismic technologies, the portability of the ADR scanner makes exploring extreme environments such as glaciers or mountains possible. It is set to transform industries also looking for greener and cheaper ways to mine and explore for minerals, hydrocarbons and commodities.”In addition to the Edinburgh expansion plans, Adrok has been building its international presence having set up a base in Perth, Australia this year. A base in Houston, Texas will open early 2013. Gordon Stove, Managing Director of Adrok said: “We have had significant growth due to business wins, as well as our investment in Australia and North America and we are now in a great position to invest further in the future of our company. This grant provides the assistance we need to build the business and ensure we can continue to service our growing client base. As a business, we want to change the way oil & gas companies and mining companies think about and experience exploration and these investment plans are the next step in what we see as a new wave for the industry.”Donald Campbell, Adrok’s Scottish Enterprise Account Manager said, “Adrok is an excellent example of a Scottish company with fantastic international growth potential and we are pleased that this grant can help them toward achieving their ambitions. Regional Selective Assistance is one of the ways in which we help companies to continue to invest in the current climate. It helps us create the right environment for companies who want to grow their businesses in Scotland, and in doing so to create much-needed jobs and positive economic growth.”last_img read more

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MovieBob Reviews THE VOID 2017

first_imgStay on target MovieBob Reviews: ‘Shadow’MovieBob Reviews: ‘The Curse of La Llorona’ Few things are more likely to make me feel apprehensive as the combination of the words “indie retro horror.” There’s a lot of well-intentioned material with that self-applied categorical description floating around the fringes of the genre world these days, and almost without fail they wind up being movies that I want to like (and feel like they’re bending over backward to appeal to my sensibilities). But most wind up leaving me wishing they were more than the sum of their parts and that I came away having gained some insight into the filmmakers’ mindset other than what older movies from the same genre they also liked.Fortunately, despite the fact that it comes from the ASTRON-6 cats (the guys behind Manborg, which I did enjoy even as it’s pretty much the apotheosis of exactly the kind of thing I’m talking about), The Void turns out to actually be mostly interested in doing its own thing. It draws much more from broader cultural and thematic points of reference rather than just other, similar movies. That’s not to say it’s a great film, but it’s original and, well… pretty solid as what is essentially the filmmakers first real stab at a feature that’s meant to be taken seriously.The premise finds a motley crew of people trapped in a small dilapidated rural hospital in the middle of nowhere that’s become surrounded on the outside by a growing number of robed, knife-wielding cult members of indeterminate origin and purpose. The ostensible good guys inside include a pair of vigilantes fleeing a crime scene, a pregnant girl, an estranged couple, some medical staff and a spaced-out drug addict. Many of whom are immediately distrustful of the others and/or ill-equipped to be dealing with a situation that grows increasingly dire: it becomes clear that the attackers are being drawn to some other, a more sinister force that’s already inside the hospital, to begin with.To say more plotwise would be both unnecessarily spoiler-ish and oddly beside the point, since all of the atmospheric strainings for Lovecraftian cosmic dread is a pretty good clue that in terms of horror we’re pointed in a decidedly Beyond The Black/Rainbow/Prince of Darkness/Possession/Altered States kind of direction. A direction where abstractions between supernatural and sci-fi concepts are used to keep us off guard about what’s really going on to the point where “what’s going on” is kind of beside the point. Though, like I said, the best news is that The Void is very much reminiscent of such films without trying to simply go down a checklist of borrowed elements.Also, while “making a lot of sense” isn’t exactly on the film’s narrative agenda, the characters are all well drawn enough that we can empathize with their reactions to what’s going on even though what’s going on never becomes explicitly clear. And despite that kind of high-mindedness being at play the film doesn’t intend to skimp on the bloody kills, inventive gore, nasty surgeries and the eventual presence of big, lumbering, otherworldly monsters and goopy flailing tentacles.On the downside, even at 90 minutes it feels like the film runs a little on the long side to not arrive at much more of a point than “well, that was certainly a strange series of events, huh?,” even though we do get satisfying character-closure for the folks who become the emotional center of the story. That tends to happen with genuinely abstract narrative films no matter what, But The Void ultimately delivers where it counts, and I’m genuinely curious to see where the filmmakers go next.The Void is now available on home video.last_img read more

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Shavez Musgrove captured

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTurks and Caicos, April 5, 2017 – Providenciales – Around 10 am today (Tuesday 4th April 2017), Detectives and Tactical Unit Officers of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force captured wanted suspect  27 year old Shavez Musgrove of Providenciales.Officers executed a Search Warrant at a home located Off Malcolm’s Road in Wheeland for stolen goods and during the search Mr. Musgrove was captured without incident. He was wanted as a suspect for a number of serious offences that occurred on Providenciales.A 17 year old female who was also found in the home is assisting police with investigations.Press Release: RTCIPF#ShavezMusgrovecaptured Related Items:#ShavezMusgrovecapturedlast_img read more

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Restoring and preserving Balboa Parks antique carousel

first_img May 18, 2018 Updated: 10:50 PM Sasha Foo, 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsBALBOA PARK (KUSI) — For almost 100 years, it’s been one of the signature attractions at Balboa Park. Now, a local non-profit has launched a fundraising campaign to ensure that the historic carousel in the park will entertain many generations to come.When the Friends of Balboa Park arranged to buy the carousel from a private owner in San Diego last spring, it also decided to set a fundraising goal of $3 million to pay for the purchase and restoration of the 1910 Herschell — Spillman carousel.The antique carousel features more than 50 animals, including horses, a reindeer, giraffes, frogs, a dragon and pigs. There are probably fewer than a dozen of these antique menagerie carousels still operating worldwide which also allow riders to play a game called the “brass ring.”The carousel which came to California in 1912 became a permanent attraction at the park in 1922.Carousel manager Bill Brown told us the motor that powers the carousel is the original. Also original, the band organ that churns out sheet music with hit melodies from 1910.Although a schedule of regular maintenance and paint touch-ups have kept the carousel operating for almost a century, the executive director of the Friends of Balboa Park said it’s time for major restoration work.John Bolthouse said the group’s fundraising campaign will pay for improvements such as treating the building that houses the carousel for termite infestation, as well as installing new wiring and a sprinkler system.Some of the funds will also be spent on enhancing the appeal of the area around the carousel, As Bill Brown, the carousel manager told us, the only downside of the carousel occurs when the ride ends, “and the kids don’t want to go and it’s hard to get them off the carousel.”Looking ahead, the Friends of Balboa Park hopes the antique carousel with its fantastic menagerie of creatures won’t ever have to stop and can keep on riding into the future.If you would like to donate, click HERE. Posted: May 18, 2018center_img Restoring and preserving Balboa Park’s antique carousel Sasha Foo Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

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Dangerous road conditions from rain across SD County

first_img KUSI Newsroom, Posted: December 5, 2018 Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI)- The slick roads that stayed empty most of the day and afternoon quickly filled up by the evening and hours of rain pouring onto the road made for dangerous road conditions.KUSI’s Ashlie Rodriguez has more on this story. December 5, 2018 KUSI Newsroom Dangerous road conditions from rain across SD Countylast_img read more

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Plants live die according to their size

first_imgPlants self-regulate their populations to maintain stability and optimize their lives, with the lengths of their lives directly related to their mass, a recent study has found. Further, a single scaling power for lifespan holds true across the entire spectrum of plants, from single-celled phototrophs to giant redwoods. Citation: Plants live, die according to their size (2007, October 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from “Plant metabolism increases with increasing temperature, and, thus, plant life span and birth and mortality rates are expected to increase with temperature as well,” explained Marbà. “Hence, global warming may have consequences for the stability of plant populations. If temperature increases mortality and birth rates equally, plant populations will turn over faster but they would remain stable. Otherwise, plant populations will decline. In any case, a faster plant turnover, coupled with higher metabolic rates of decomposing microorganims with warming, may lead to a reduction in the CO2 sink capacity of vegetation.”Despite the delicate balance between mortality and birth rates, the actual mechanisms governing plant life and death are still unclear to biologists. Most certainly, controls include an assortment of metabolic processes interacting at all levels, from molecular to organismal, and include respiration, reproduction, cellular damage, and structural imbalances. Because plants, unlike animals, retain their reproductive capacity throughout their lives, evolution might put greater selective pressure on plants’ lifespans. The researchers plan to continue investigating how these processes combine to influence plant life histories. Citation: Marbà, Núria, Duarte, Carlos M., and Agustí, Susana. “Allometric scaling of plant life history.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, October 2, 2007, vol. 104, no. 40, 15777-15780.Copyright 2007 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of Mortality and birth rates are nearly identical for all plants, keeping their populations stable. Credit: Núria Marbà, et al. ©2007 PNAS. Scientists have long known that animals’ lifespans are closely scaled to the species’ body size, with elephants living longer than mice. But while plant biologists have predicted such a connection in plants, a full study has never been performed until now.Researchers Núria Marbà, Carlos Duarte and Susana Agustí at the Mediterranan Institute for Advanced Studies—a joint institute between the CSIC (Spanish Council for Scientific Research) and the University of the Balearic Islands in Esporles, Spain—have recently examined more than 1,000 reports of plant birth and mortality rates across a wide spectrum of species, discovering that the connection holds with extreme precision.The researchers found that both population mortality rates and population birth rates of all plant species scale as the –¼ power of plant mass. In other words, the smaller a plant, the higher its mortality and birth rates, meaning the shorter its lifespan. Hence, plant lifespan scales as almost exactly the ¼ power of plant mass. “The functioning of biological systems depends to a large extent on their metabolism, i.e., on how they process energy and materials, such as light, water, and nutrients,” Marbà explained to “Small plants require fewer resources per unit of time than large ones, and, therefore, they are able to turn over the individuals of their populations faster than large plants. As plant size increases, more resources and time are needed to produce a fully grown individual, and thus their lifespan increases, resulting in small plants having shorter life spans than larger ones.”An interesting aspect of these relationships is that mortality and birth rates are nearly identical within a species, keeping the population extremely stable. Nature has additional reasons for this perfect balance, too, which include stabilizing carbon cycling, optimizing plant life histories, and stabilizing the ecosystems the plants inhabit. The scientists suggest that, to achieve this balance, plant mortality rates have evolved to match the birth rates.The group also investigated whether temperature entered the equation. According to the metabolic theory of ecology, metabolic rates (which determine lifespan) should be temperature-dependent. However, the researchers found that, unlike animals, plants’ mortality and birth rates are independent of temperature, or at least within the variation of their data. This finding contrasts with previous evidence that mortality rates of phytoplankton, macroalgae, and land plants increase with increasing temperature when the response of single species to temperature is examined. The researchers explain that resolving this issue could have a fundamental impact on predictions of global warming. center_img Live fast and die young, or play the long game? Scientists map 121 animal life cycles Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Are women really moving up in the workplace

first_imgMeanwhile, men were significantly more sanguine about progress: 33 percent said they’ve seen positive change in the last five years. Only 20 percent of women agreed things have gotten better for women in their companies in the last five years, according to a new ASCEND-Morning Consult poll. The #MeToo movement has thrown a spotlight on gender discrimination issues in the workplace. But is office culture really changing? It depends on whom you ask.center_img “We were actually quite surprised,” Katherine Phillips, a Columbia Business School professor who analyzed the poll’s results for Ascend and Morning Consult, told “Morning Joe” co-host and Know Your Value founder Mika Brzezinski. Read the whole story: NBClast_img read more

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