Film fests grave proposition Watch scifi film from inside a coffin

first_imgTo mark its 40th anniversary, Sweden’s Göteborg Film Festival will hold “an extremely intimate screening” of a sci-fi movie. How intimate? Well, let’s just say coffins don’t generally have a ton of space for stretching. The video teaser for the “world’s most claustrophobic cinema” shows a terrified-looking Meghan Markle lookalike walking through dark corridors until she comes upon a cavernous room containing a single sarcophagus. The footage then shows her from the inside of the tomb, breathing heavily, touching the top of the small, dark compartment with shaky hands and definitely not looking like she’s enjoying a relaxing afternoon at the cinema. Post a comment Share your voice Tags TV and Movies 0 Aniara, the film that viewers will watch in the confined space, is a 2018 adaptation of a science fiction poem by Nobel Prize winner Harry Martinson about space colonists who leave an Earth ravaged by extreme weather, only to find cosmic travel presents its own problems. In the 106-minute Swedish movie, a spaceship carrying settlers to Mars is knocked off course, causing the passengers to consider their place in the universe. Watching the action from the custom-made sarcophagus will presumably give viewers a sense of what’s it like to be alone in space, totally isolated from the outside world. It might feel lonely and restrictive in the box, but at least you won’t have to deal with those annoying audience members who spend the whole film talking and texting. “We want to explore what happens when you watch a film in extreme conditions,” the festival says of the experience, which runs at the international fest in Gothenburg from Jan. 27-31. The Göteborg Film Festival attracts more than 160,000 visitors annually, according to the website, though only a limited number will get to swap a seat for a sarcophagus. Those interested in the opportunity can share their email on the festival site for a chance to get a ticket. The site doesn’t list a price, but I’ve reached out to the festival for comment.  “Limited space available,” the video teaser ends (get it?). “Book now.” Culture: Your hub for everything from film and television to music, comics, toys and sports.Crowd Control: A crowdsourced science fiction novel written by CNET readers.last_img read more

DU opens dengue diagnosis prescription centre

DU opens dengue diagnosis prescription centre

first_imgDU vice-chancellor (VC) professor Akhtaruzzaman inaugurates the centre on Wednesday. Photo: BSSDhaka University (DU) in collaboration with Bangladesh Association of Clinical Biochemists (BACB) on Wednesday launched a ‘Dengue Diagnosis and Prescription Center’ at the medical centre of the university.DU vice-chancellor (VC) professor Akhtaruzzaman inaugurated the centre where measures have been taken to provide medical support for the students suffered from dengue fever.BACB president professor Imran Kabir, also vice chancellor of Comilla University and DU pro-VC (admin) professor Muhammad Samad, among others were present.last_img read more

Xbox 720 XDK confirms mandatory game installs always connected console

first_imgAt the beginning of February there was a rumor that Microsoft intended to make the Xbox 720 require an Internet connection to function. In doing so, it would ultimately wipe out the used games market for the next-gen console. That rumor has now been backed up by a document included with the Xbox development kit for the new hardware, known as the XDK.Installing the XDK opens up access to the help documentation and a page titled “Durango Hardware Overview.” Now this document is marked as preliminary and subject to change, but goes into detail about what to expect the Xbox 720 hardware to include.The key part of this document is in paragraph 6, which states that every Durango console will include a hard drive big enough to hold a “large number of games.” The machine will also not support “play from the optical disc.” The next paragraph details how games will ship on Blu-ray discs, must be installed, but will allow play to start as the installation is happening (similar to the system Sony is using for the PS4).In a different section of the document it is detailed that the console will be always on and always connected. So Microsoft is going to employ low power states rather than wanting you to power down the console completely. The always connected part is explained as allowing both the games and the system to be “always current.”There’s a chance this information is relatively old, say 12 months, but it seems unlikely Microsoft would have changed its mind on such core functionality of the hardware. It looks pretty clear to me that all games will need to be installed, the optical drive won’t be used at all for games beyond allowing installations, and an Internet connection is a must.The fact games don’t use the optical drive and media post install would mean you could give the game to someone else to install. Microsoft won’t accept that so it looks pretty much guaranteed you’ll have to activate your game online and therefore tie the copy to your account. In other words, no game trade ins or a used game market.last_img read more

Islamic treasure

Islamic treasure

first_imgThe visual art of writing will unveil in all its vintage glory for heritage lovers in the Capital, as National Museum opens an exhibition on calligraphy with focus on its Islamic stream dating back to five centuries.A total of 56 utility artefacts from NM’s collection will be on display at the show titled Art of Calligraphy and Beyond: Arabic-Persian Inscriptions on Decorative Arts objects, which will be inaugurated by Union Minister of state for Tourism and Culture Mahesh Sharma on May 15. Curated by NM officials Anamika Pathak and Zahid Ali Ansari, the 59-day show will portray the aesthetics of Arabic-Persian inscriptions known for their tasteful blend with flora-fauna designs that add to charm of the objects — the oldest among which is from 1494 AD. Naseem Akhtar, an authority on Arabic-Persian language, has transcribed all the inscriptions on the exhibits. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’NM’s Director-General Sanjiv Mittal noted that the upcoming exhibition assumes significance, considering that fancy lettering of a script has been one of the most important aspects of certain cultures. “The highlight of the show is that it has inscriptions on metal-ware, wood, textiles and semi-precious stones,” he added.Pathak, who is curator (decorative arts), said artefacts at the exhibition are one that were crafted for daily, ceremonial and religious uses from a variety of materials like ivory, jade, ceramic, textile, wood, metal, glass, paper, leather and bone.These artefacts have been arranged, as per their utilities, into five main groups; writing implements, religion, faith, tradition and trade.last_img read more

Snugburys unveils latest giant straw sculpture and heres ELEVEN more that blew

first_img The 36ft straw meerkat peeping over the Hurleston fields proved a very popular sculpture and big favourite with the children in 2010.   Snugburys meerkat supported the Railway Children and over 2010/11 raised £2,880. Windmill – 2008 Driver named following fatal collision   The Angel of the North West – a tongue-in-cheek take on the sculpture near Gateshead – was another great success. Millennium Wheel – 2005 Snugbury’s newest sculpture – a giant bumble bee Explaining the thinking behind the giant bee, a Snugbury’s spokesman said: “He stands 40ft tall and is made of straw and hand split wood, which is coated in a natural black dye to give him his iconic stripes. “We had an unprecedented amount of requests for our next straw feature, and this one was such an obvious pick for us. Read MoreStoke-on-Trent’s newest oatcake shop is now open (and prices start from just 35p!)   “As a certified organic farm we do our best to enhance the farm’s environment for the local wildlife. “We heard some terrible statistics about bees, for example did you know one third of the UK’s bee population has disappeared in the last decade. “We wanted to do our bit and help these little fellas out.” Bumble is the latest in a long line of sculptures at Snugbury’s. Here we take a look at the 11 wonders that have taken our breath away over the last two decades. Compare the Meerkat – 2010   Big Ben in 2009 marked the 150th anniversary of the iconic clock in London’s Palace of Westminster. The straw namesake became a news sensation appearing in media all over the UK. Wheel of fortune – 2012   A giant straw windmill was created to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the straw sculptures. The idea actually came from a reader of The Sentinel’s sister newspaper, the Crewe Chronicle. Big Ben – 2009   The London 2012 Olympics saw Sir Chris Hoyle lead out a talented team of cyclists in the velodrome and win a string of gold medals.  The Snugburys’ straw recreation was a fitting tribute to their triumphs. Cyclists speeding down Chester Road would often give a thumbs up!   Dish of the Day – 2007   In 2011 Cheshire was home to one very cool straw Polar Bear. Standing 38ft tall and weighing in at an impressive 9 tonnes, it took 3 tonnes of straw and over a month to complete. On this occasion the sculpture supported The Children’s Adventure Farm Trust. Peter Rabbit – 2016   There were two giant dish shaped telescopes in Cheshire in 2007. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Holmes Chapel based Lovell telescope at Jodrell Bank an anniversary straw sculpture was built to commemorate it. The 45ft structure known as Dish of the Day weighed over 6 tonnes. Exterminate! – 2013 Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital windowcenter_img   A dinosaur could once again be seen striding across the Cheshire plains. This Ice Cream eating Coneastrawus was another hit with children. Polar bear – 2011 Police search for missing woman Follow StokeonTrentLive Download our app  – You can download our free app for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store , or get the Android version from Google Play .  Follow StokeonTrentLive on Facebook – Like our Facebook page to get the latest news in your feed and join in the lively discussions in the comments. Click here to give it a like! Follow us on Twitter – For breaking news and the latest stories, click here to follow SOTLive on Twitter . Follow us on Instagram – Featuring pictures past and present from across Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire & South Cheshire – and if you tag us in your posts, we could repost your picture on our page! We also put the latest news in our Instagram Stories. Click here to follow StokeonTrentLive on Instagram . Punter found hiding in bushes   The steel and straw Millennium Wheel was an engineering marvel. The straw landmark modelled on the London eye courted media attention and Snugburys even received a letter from David Marks, the architect of the real-life version. Coneastrawus – 2003   2016 marked the 150th anniversary of Beatrix Potter and the amazing Peter Rabbit sculpture really did wow the tourists. Sadly it was torched by arsonists. The devastated community rallied and people donated money and a new Peter Rabbit was quickly erected in 2017. Out of the ashes sprung another fabulous recreation to wow the crowds again and defy the mindless thugs who would destroy such a wonderful work of art. Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailThere’s a real buzz about Snugbury’s latest straw sculpture – a 40ft bumble bee. For nearly 20 years, Snugbury’s ice cream farm near Nantwich has created incredible designs to mark anniversaries and other major events. In fact, the most recent – Peter Rabbit – was so popular he became a tourist attraction in his own right with families wanting selfies. On top of that, the phenomenal sculptures have raised thousands for local charities at the same time as raising the profile of the award-winning ice cream. Now Snugbury’s is hoping to raise awareness of the plight of bees with its latest creation. For every chocolate honeycomb piece bought in the shop, Snugbury’s will donate 50p to the Bumble Bee Conservation Trust. And Bumble is sure to be a hit with motorists heading from Stoke-on-Trent towards Chester and North Wales. (Image: Peter Byrne/PA Wire)   This fabulous 35ft Dalek which celebrated 50 years of Dr Who in 2013 took 700 hours to complete and was nicknamed the DaLICK and raised £3,000 for Cancer Research UK. Angel from the North West – 2004 last_img read more

Settop box and wireless networking specialist Air

first_imgSet-top box and wireless networking specialist AirTies has launched a new portable wireless set-top box (STB), designed to be small enough to fit into a handbag.The Air 7205 miniature STB measures 10 by 10 centimetres and is one of a number of products that the firm is demoing at the TV Connect event in London this week.Airties said the 7205 attaches wirelessly to the IP gateway, features remote control and home automation capabilities and can easily be moved from room to room.“The STB wirelessly connects to the home gateway and works on any unmanaged internet connection, effectively unbundling the provision of the pay TV service from the broadband service offering and opening up new revenue-stream opportunities,” said the firm.AirTies is also launching a new family of HEVC/4K set-top boxes, designed to offer satellite-quality live and on-demand video to any subscriber with a broadband connection.The Air 7410 line of set-tops consist of an OTT/IPTV STB and a hybrid DVB-T/OTT version that is available to trial quantities.All versions will include an HEVC decoder, 4K TV display, USB 3.0 and will use the latest Broadcom 7251 System-on-a-chip. The boxes will be on display for the first time at TV Connect.In addition, AirTies is using the event to launch two new versions of its next generation wireless video access points, targeted at both broadband and pay TV operators.The AirTies Air 4820 and Air 4920 feature the latest 802.11ac wireless chipsets and are designed to “simultaneously solve two of the most critical issues facing operators today: the cost of installing a pay TV service and the problem of consumers not getting the internet speeds they are paying for when connecting multiple devices in different rooms or on different floors,” said AirTies.last_img read more

Volumes are way up as well  In gold volume is ju

first_img Volumes are way up as well.  In gold, volume is just over 43,000 contracts, and silver’s volume is now at 14,000 contracts, which are almost the same as the volumes at this time of day on Monday.  The dollar index has spiked up a whole 9 basis points. It could be an interesting day during the New York trading session, so nothing will surprise me when I switch my computer on later this morning. That’s all I have for today, and I’ll see you here tomorrow. The gold stocks managed to keep their heads above water until the gold price began to sell off shortly after the 1:30 p.m. EDT Comex close, and the shares followed.  The HUI closed down 1.57%, virtually on its low of the day. It’s visible for all to see, unless they’re willfully blind, that is. The gold price opened flat in New York on Sunday night and then didn’t do much until 9 a.m. in Hong Kong when a not-for-profit seller took gold down about fifteen bucks in just a few second.  The price struggled back after that, but could never made it above the $1,330 spot price mark before getting sold down. Gold closed at $1,322.30 spot, down $3.30 from Friday’s close.  Gold’s net volume on the day was 144,000 contracts, with 35,000 of that coming before the London open, so you can see that trading was very active in the Far East on their Monday. The silver stock headed south even earlier than the gold stocks, and Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 2.82%.  A lot of the silver miners did much worse than that.  The silver equities, like their golden brethren, have now given back all their gains from last Wednesday. The CME’s Daily Delivery Report for Monday showed that zero gold and 80 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Wednesday.  There were seven short/issuers, with the biggest being ABN Amro with 47 contracts.  The three largest stoppers were Canada’s Bank of Nova Scotia with 32 contracts, followed by JPMorgan Chase with 28 contracts in its in-house [proprietary] trading account, and 14 in its client account.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. There was another withdrawal from from GLD yesterday, as an authorized participant took out 19,309 troy ounces.  And as of 10:01 p.m. yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV. Since yesterday was Monday, the U.S. Mint had a sales report.  They sold 3,000 ounces of gold eagles; 3,500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes; and 710,500 silver eagles. There wasn’t much in/out movement in gold within the Comex-approved depositories on Friday.  They reported receiving 5,353 troy ounces of the stuff, and shipped 385 troy ounces out the door.  The link to that activity is here. As usual, there was a lot more activity in silver.  They reported receiving 500,272 troy ounces, and 138,665 troy ounces were shipped off to parts unknown.  The link to that action is here. Since today is Tuesday, I have a few more stories than normal, so I hope you’re able to find the time to read the ones that interest you the most. I’m not a Fed-Head because whatever they do is not specific to silver and gold, but applies to asset values in general. I’m more interested in the things most specific to silver and gold. As is usually the case, what moved silver and gold violently this [past] week was not the Fed, in my opinion, but factors much more specific, namely, the illegal trading practices on the COMEX. In fact, it’s hard for me to comprehend how anyone paying close attention could fail to see the obvious explanation for the week’s volatility in silver and gold – JPMorgan and other collusive commercials rigging prices on the COMEX for their own benefit. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 21 September 2013 Except for the 9 a.m. appearance of the high-frequency traders in Hong Kong, it was pretty quiet during the rest of the trading day both in Europe and in New York on Monday.  I also noted that all four precious metals got sold down for small loses during electronic trading after the Comex had closed for the day. Nothing will happen price-wise until JPMorgan and the raptors [the Commercial traders other than the Big 8] stop doing what they’re doing.  The gold and silver pundits out there can predict rallies until the cows come home, but until the above-mentioned players stop gaming the system, either for profit or on Fed/BIS orders, or both, nothing will come of it. These guys can step into the market any time they wish, and as you can tell from the price action since the low back at the end of June, that’s precisely what they’ve been doing, andand it’s visible for all to see, unless they’re willfully blind, that is. Today, at the 1:30 p.m. EDT close of Comex trading, is the cut-off for this Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report.  If the Tuesday trading session comes and goes with little price action [at least to the upside] then we should get a very clear picture of what happened on Wednesday and Friday of last week, the big up/down days following the Fed announcement. All four precious metals traded marginally higher during most of the Far East trading day on their Thursday, and silver managed to spike above $22 for a minute or so.  However, shortly before 2 p.m. Hong Kong time, all four came under high-frequency trading selling pressure, and now prices are back to around their Monday closes in New York.  Volumes were very decent in Far East trading, but not anywhere near as high as they were on Monday at this time, but still pretty chunky nonetheless.  The dollar index is chopping sideways, and is basically unchanged as of 3:42 a.m. EDT. And as I hit the send button on today’s column at 5:20 a.m. EDT, all four precious metals are still under pressure from the HFT crowd, with silver leading the way.  At the moment it’s down more than 60 cents from its high earlier in the day in Hong Kong. Silver ran into the same 9 a.m. Hong Kong seller as gold did, but by 10:30 a.m. in New York, the price had struggle back to slightly above unchanged from Friday’s close, but once electronic trading began, it got sold down for a small loss on the day. Silver finished the Monday session at $21.64 spot, down 16 cents from Friday.  Net volume was very decent at 46,500 contracts and, like gold, 15,000 of those contracts traded before the London open.  That’s a lot of contracts in both metals for that time of day.center_img Sponsor Advertisement The dollar index closed in New York on Friday at 80.44.  It hit its low of the Monday session [80.29] minutes after 2 p.m. in Hong Kong, and then chopped back to basically unchanged into the close, as it finished at 80.45.  Nothing to see here. Both platinum and palladium had mini spikes down at 9 a.m. Hong Kong time as well.  Platinum rallied back until just before the London open before getting quietly sold down for the rest of the day.  Palladium traded pretty flat until around 11:30 a.m. BST in London and then gold sold down a bit over ten bucks by 9:30 a.m. in New York.  From there it recovered but, like the other three precious metals, it wasn’t allowed to close in positive territory, either.  Here are the charts. See Dr. Ron Paul Up Close and Personal at the 2013 Casey Summit He’s never voted to raise taxes. He’s never taken a government-paid junket. And he’s never voted for an unbalanced budget. He’s Dr. Ron Paul, and he’s always led by example. During his 36 years in Congress, he tried to convince his colleagues to vote along with him against any measure that ran counter to the Constitution. Unfortunately, they seldom did. So now he’s taken his message to the streets… and to the 3 Days with Casey Summit which is being held October 4-6 in beautiful Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Paul will be the keynote speaker for this timely event—a rare opportunity for investors and freedom-lovers of all stripes to hear and see him live. Not only will he be speaking, he’ll be in attendance for the entire three days, giving attendees the chance to talk with him in small, intimate settings. That he’s staying for the entire Summit speaks volumes about how important it is. In fact, many of the Summit speakers intend to stay for the duration as well. On hand with Dr. Paul will be renowned contrarian investor Doug Casey, internationally known economist Dr. Lacy Hunt, The Crash Course author Chris Martenson, Mauldin Economics Chairman John Mauldin, and 21 other financial and investment experts. Seats are going fast for this event—and Casey Summits always sell out—so reserve yours now.last_img read more

Harder to Get Ahead We are not sure how up to da

first_img Harder to Get Ahead We are not sure how up to date the following figures are. But we doubt that they have changed much. From MarketWatch: Approximately 62% of Americans have no emergency savings for things such as a $1,000 emergency room visit or a $500 car repair, according to a new survey of 1,000 adults by personal finance website Bankrate.com. […] What’s more, only 39% of respondents reported having a “rainy day” fund adequate to cover three months of expenses, and only 48% of respondents said that they would completely cover a hypothetical emergency expense costing $400 without selling something or borrowing money. If you follow mainstream news media, you might believe that the “recovery continues on track.” Or that earnings are increasing. Or unemployment is falling. But keeping your eyes on these data points blinds you to what is really going on. People have always struggled to make ends meet. But as the money system changed…so did the typical family’s household finances: It got harder to get ahead. Yes, most people live better than they did in the 1970s. Technological and commercial progress has improved the quality of the things we live with. There are more choices in the supermarkets…in Walmart…and online. Today’s F-150 is better, in many ways, than the F-150 from 40 years ago. Houses are bigger and more comfortable. Air conditioning is more widespread. Communication channels and entertainment are better than ever. But though life is easier and more agreeable for most people, few people have more real money. They have more things. And more credit. But they are deeper in debt…more vulnerable to a downturn…and more dependent on the government and the credit industries. “Debt Makes Sense” Your editor recently took up the subject with a recruiting agency. “I place a lot of accountants and bookkeepers,” began the recruiter. “Naturally, their employers want a credit check. They want to know how you handle your finances. They also want to avoid people whose financial situation sends up flags. Desperate people are not ideal new hires for the accounting department. “The people we place earn $60,000 and up. Usually, husband and wife both work, and often they both have MBA or other advanced degrees, so you’re looking at some substantial incomes. The recruiter continued: “Usually, they have some student debt, auto debt, and mortgage debt. And they usually have a revolving line of credit, too. These are prudent, well-educated people we’re talking about. They use credit wisely, when they need to make a big-ticket purchase…or pay for private schooling. “What we look for is a clean report. No late payments. The level of debt doesn’t bother us. I mean, the banks wouldn’t lend if they thought there was a problem. “Besides, everybody uses debt now. It makes sense. With rates this low, it’s better to borrow than to use your own money. Debt is just a financial tool.” Is that all debt is? A handy tool? We don’t think so… More to come… Regards, Editor’s Note: Bankers are worried you have “too much cash.” Agora founder Bill Bonner recently had an eye-opening talk with local bankers. In today’s Weekend Edition, Bill tells us what happened when the bankers tried to persuade him borrow money… Bill originally wrote this essay on April 5, 2016, in Bill Bonner’s Diary. By Bill Bonner, editor, The Bill Bonner Letter In an extraordinary turn of events, last week we were contacted by our local bankers. Since we were turned down for a mortgage in 1982 (our business finances were thought to be “too shaky”), we have had little truck with them. We pay cash. They mind their own business. But for the first time we can recall, not just one but three suits came to visit. Personable and intelligent, they were worried when they saw how much cash we were keeping on hand. No kidding. They came to visit to propose ways we could “put it to use.” Too Much Cash? “You really should take some of that cash and invest it in municipal bonds” was the motion on the table. “What if the municipalities can’t pay?” we asked. “Don’t worry about that. Historically, the odds of default are extremely remote,” one of them answered. “But what if interest rates turn up? Wouldn’t the default rate go up?” “Well, maybe. But we keep the maturities short and invest only in the most creditworthy municipalities. The risk is very low.” “Oh…but what if we just need some cash.” “No problem. We’ll give you a line of credit.” “Let me get this straight. You’re proposing to put me into debt so that I can keep my money invested in somebody else’s debt?” “Uh…well…yes…and we’ll charge you less interest than you will earn from the municipal bonds.” “Wait. You can earn a fee for putting my money in bonds…and earn another fee for lending me money…and I still end up ahead?” “Yes. We just try to find ways to help clients with their financial needs.” “Oh.” Worse Off Little by little, day after day, year after year, we connect the dots. At first, it is difficult to make out what we’re looking at. But gradually, after much straining and guesswork, two things are becoming clearer and clearer…at least to us. First, nobody knows anything. Second, nobody has any real money. Yesterday, we mentioned our persistent puzzlement over the failure of the U.S. economy to make the typical working American richer after accounting for inflation. For all its conceits, swindles, booms, busts, hustles, patents, technologies, investments, PhDs, and central bank chicanery…there seems to be little to show for it. You can test that assertion easily. All wage and inflation numbers are a little fishy. So, let’s keep it simple. The basic transportation for a working man 40 years ago was the Ford F-150 pickup truck. In 1976, that truck, the SuperCab model, had a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $4,600. That was when the average working stiff earned $9,300 a year. So, it took 25 weeks of work to pay for the truck. Today, the F-150 is still the preferred working man’s wheels. And today, it has a MSRP of $26,600—or 5.7 times as much. But the average person doesn’t earn 5.7 times as much. The median wage today is $43,600. So now, a prole earning the median wage has to work 30 weeks to pay for the truck. This man is not better off. He’s worse off. And he’s been made worse off by advanced American crony capitalism. And here are more dots…to be connected! What do we see…? Recommended Links Bill Bonner’s Private Meeting in Vancouver For years, Bill Bonner’s invested mostly in gold and real estate. But after a private meeting on a boat in Vancouver, he’s about to put seven-figures in an unexpected place. Details here. –center_img — Rare chance to share a scotch with Doug (only 100 tickets)… We’ve got 100 free tickets for the Sprott Natural Resource Symposium this year, and you have the chance to claim one… Your ticket also gives you access to a VIP scotch reception, where you can share a whiskey with Doug. Click here to learn more… Bill Editor’s Note: If you haven’t heard, Bill Bonner is committing $5 million to Chris Mayer’s astonishingly successful investment strategy. Chris is one of the best stock pickers in the business. His picks have beaten the market by more than 3-to-1 over the past decade. Bill and Chris recently held a free investment training event to explain the secrets of this strategy. You can learn all about Chris’s investment strategy and invest in the same companies Bill Bonner’s family trust is investing in. Click here to watch this free video now.last_img read more

first_img— What Teeka Discovered at a Private Bitcoin Meeting in New York Will Shock You Recommended Link After a private meeting with some of the wealthiest investors in the world, Teeka’s making a major new Bitcoin prediction for 2018. Details here. Another was that everybody and their dog was talking about them. Because it had gone up 1,000% in the last year, they expected a repeat performance. It’s always that way in financial markets. Look, the last time I saw anything quite this goofy was during the internet bubble. Dozens of failed mining companies in Vancouver were turning themselves into internet companies. It was happening weekly, almost daily. That was the bell ringing at the top of the market for the internet companies. It was also the bottom of the market for the mining companies. So, I’m frankly trying to liquidate at this point. I really only want to own gold, silver, and other commodities to preserve capital. And mining stocks, as speculations. And more cash than I’m accustomed to. But that only leads us to another problem. The dollar itself is a hot potato. Justin: What do you mean? Doug: Keeping dollars in banks is very dangerous. The whole world is like Cyprus a few years ago. You don’t actually own anything in a bank or broker anymore—your assets are the unsecured liability of an institution that’s likely bankrupt. This is especially true if you have more than $250,000 in any given account, which the FDIC insures. But it’s bankrupt too, with assets that cover like a half percent of their liabilities. The problem is systemic risk, and it’s worldwide. It’s like Joe Louis said: you can run but you can’t hide. The only place you can hide today is gold and silver. That, and cheap real estate, if you can find it. Justin: Yeah, gold is doing quite well. Its price is up 12% since July. What do you attribute this to? Is it because investors are taking shelter? Is it due to the weak dollar? Or is it simply because we’re in the early innings of a new commodity bull market? Doug: Well, I think all the indications are aligning at this point. It’s been a rough bear market. As a group, commodities are 50% below their 2011 highs. It’s been a deep bear market as well as a long bear market. As a result, commodities have never been cheaper relative to financial assets like stocks and bonds. It’s a great time to be in commodities. And gold is the foremost commodity. It’s historically been used as money. And it will continue to be used as money because none of these governments should, or do, trust each other. Or each other’s phony paper fiat currencies. There could be a buying panic in gold and it could go much higher. We’re in a new bull market for gold at this point, but nobody cares. Or even knows that’s true. The same is true for silver. Although, silver is primarily an industrial commodity. It’s the poor man’s gold for many reasons. Silicon Valley Rocket Scientist’s February 27th Prediction Could Lead to 35,000% Growth Jeff Brown is a real-life rocket scientist and one of the most tuned-in angel investors in Silicon Valley. Not only has Jeff been an executive for companies like Qualcomm and NXP Semiconductors, but he’s also completed 89 private deals. Right now, he’s predicting that a new biotech breakthrough could skyrocket this market niche 35,000%… All because of a little-known FDA anomaly happening around February 27. Click here to see him lay out his bold prediction in full detail.center_img — Recommended Link Justin’s note: Volatility has come storming back. Just look at the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), which measures how volatile investors expect the market to be over the next 30 days. It’s up 89% since the start of the year. Last week, it hit the highest level since 2016. Investors aren’t used to this. After all, last year was the least volatile year ever for U.S. stocks. That lulled many investors to sleep. It led them to take risks they would normally never take. Now, those same people are wondering what to do. They aren’t sure if this is just a run-of-the-mill pullback…or the start of something much worse. To help answer this question, I called up Doug Casey. I knew he would have an interesting take on this matter… Justin: Doug, U.S. stocks took a beating recently. Where do you see things going from here? Doug: Well, I hate to make a firm prediction of timing. The fact that things have held together, against all odds, since 2009, has underlined the old saying about just because something is inevitable doesn’t mean it’s imminent. Predictions of disaster, and all these things unwinding, have been wrong over the last half a decade. And the smart bet is always for muddling through, in the direction of progress. But it seems that we’ve finally reached a peak, a major turning point. Justin: So, what have you done to protect your wealth? Doug: At the beginning of the year, I took all my original capital out of cryptos, plus 150% profits. I also took profits on crypto stocks. I got in late, and out a bit late. But it was a happy experience. They were bubbly. Every company that could possibly do so has gotten into this game. Now XYZ ice cream company is XYZ blockchain company. That was one tipoff. Justin: How much higher could gold head? Doug: Well, these things usually move in a hyperbolic curve. They start out slowly. Then, they accelerate. Same type of thing we saw with cryptocurrencies. I think gold will do the same, although not to the same extent. My prediction by the end of this year is that gold will hit $2,000. In 2019, $3,000. In 2020, $4,000. By the time this bull market peaks, gold could reach $10,000. But I hate to say things like that…because it sounds so outrageous. But look at the number of dollars in existence ($3.635 trillion in the M-1 money). Divide that by the 260 million ounces of gold the U.S. Government is supposed to own, and you get a gold price of $13,982/ounce. Look at the number of dollars that are outside the U.S.—$10 trillion, $20 trillion, who knows?—and that liability is growing by $50 billion annually with the balance of trade deficit. At $1,300 per ounce, the U.S. gold holdings can’t even cover a year’s deficit. And consider the fact that at some point those dollars will need to be redeemed by something if they’re going to retain any value. The price of gold—if gold is going to be fixed to the dollar again, at least for the purpose of trading with foreigners, with foreign governments—is going to have to be much higher than it is today. Of course, I don’t think the dollar should exist, nor should the U.S. government even be in the money business; it just confuses the issue. Money is a medium of exchange and a store of value—it shouldn’t also be a political football, and a means for the State to finance itself. Gold itself should be used as money. Remember that the dollar—like the franc, the pound, the mark, and what-have-you—were just names for a specific quantity of gold. So a six-to-one shot from here is not at all unreasonable over the next several years. And that would mean very good things for gold stocks. Justin: So, it’s safe to assume you’re buying gold stocks? Doug: Resource companies are essentially the only stocks that I’m buying right now. And that’s because nobody’s interested in them. They’re very cheap. Of course mining itself is a crappy business. You can’t invest in it, only speculate. But it’s a great speculation now. I probably do, on average, a private placement a week in mining stocks, which is quite a lot. The only thing I’m afraid of is having too many stocks. You can’t effectively monitor more than 15 or 20 stocks. And then you lose track of them. You can’t keep up. You forgot why you bought them. Unless I really like the stock and I’m planning on following it in particular, I sell the basic stock after the four-month hold period and keep the warrants in case I get lucky. Justin: What else are you buying right now? Doug: Well, I buy gold coins whenever the opportunity presents itself. I try to be disciplined about that. I just put them away and forget they exist. Unlike gold stocks, you can do that with gold coins. I think it’s wiser to buy small gold coins, of a quarter-ounce or less, as opposed to the one-ounce-size coins that are so popular today. Paying the premium is worth it. Incidentally, I also prefer to buy semi-numismatic coins, like British sovereigns, French Louis d’or, Danish crowns, and the like, as opposed to the currently minted ones. I treat gold, physical gold, as a savings medium, an insurance medium. To speculate, I buy small mining exploration issues. Because they’re so cheap. But if we have a 1929-style credit collapse, however, I’m sure most of them are going to get washed away. But the odds are much better that the dollar’s going to lose value at an increasing rate over the next few years. Because we have Keynesian academics at the helm of the financial world. People with no experience in the real world. They shouldn’t even be allowed to teach a freshman class in economics. Some of them should be, and quite possibly will be, hung by their heels from a lamppost when things come unglued. The world economy is going to wind up crashed on the rocks. It’s going to be very ugly. And soon. Justin’s note: Each month, Doug shares his unique insights in The Casey Report, our flagship publication. And beyond Doug’s timeless political and market commentary, you’ll get stock recommendations designed to help build your wealth—even in today’s uncertain market environment. To learn more about a subscription to The Casey Report, click here.last_img read more

Recommended Link

first_imgRecommended Link I can think of at least 25 more reasons to own gold right now as well… But you get the picture.These investors haven’t said why they’re buying gold. But we know they are buying… And you only buy something for one reason: You think it will go up in value.The reason we follow the world’s most successful investors is because we don’t have to do all the research ourselves. They spend tens of millions of dollars on research every year. We can profit just by following them.They have hundreds of other investments they could make. Yet they chose to allocate a good portion of their portfolios to gold.I’m not going to bet against any one of these guys—let alone all three.Let’s piggyback off their multimillion-dollar research budgets and own some gold. The easiest way to add gold exposure to your portfolio is through GLD.Regards,Nick Rokke, CFA Analyst, The Palm Beach DailyP.S. We’re excited to announce that former hedge fund manager and world-renowned cryptocurrency expert Teeka Tiwari has found PBRG’s first “Whale Hunter.”Teeka’s new contact is a former top Wall Street trader. He worked for one of the world’s top investment banks, where he figured out how to hunt these billionaire whale traders… and he created a system to profit by tracking them.Last night, we revealed the identity of the Whale Hunter for the first time. Over 10,000 people tuned in to see exactly how his system works. And today only, you can watch a full replay video that shows you the entire story right here.Reader MailbagToday, more high praise for Doug Casey and his new book, Totally Incorrect Volume 2:I have read and reread Totally Incorrect, and kudos from a mind based in reality, not emotion.Doug Casey is as kind as he can be in the face of extreme stupidity of individuals and institutions. Refreshing to find a similar mind that is fact, based in reality instead of some dream world. Keep leading the horse to water, we know it will not drink until it is dying of thirst, and may by then forget how to drink… all this unfocused attention is just hilarious, and the failure to learn at least some history is the blight of current education. Doug, you rock! —DonHave you claimed your free copy of Doug’s book yet? It’s packed with Doug’s no-filtered insights on today’s most controversial topics.It’s also a vital guide to surviving the changes happening in America today… as well as a road map for where they’ll take us. Click here to learn how you can get your hands on it.And as always, if you have any questions or suggestions for the Dispatch, send them to us right here.In Case You Missed It…It’s called the “100-to-1 Project”…In this exclusive interview, you can get all the details surrounding a little-known stock that could be on the verge of a historic breakout. In the past, similar stocks have shown investors 96,900%, 196,500% and 787,400% gains. Click here to learn more. Urgent – You only have until midnight to claim all of this: 75% savings… a FREE year of service… plus the unprecedented $250,000 ChallengeLast night’s $250,000 Challenge broadcast was a success: thousands of people tuned in to see the launch of our newest service, Palm Beach Trader. We posted a full replay video that shows you the full story right here. But you only have until midnight to save 75%… and get a completely free year… AND take us up on that $250,000 Challenge…so click here now. Seth Klarman. He’s the author of Margin of Safety, a book packed with such good information that people pay thousands of dollars for it (if you can even find a copy). No one is better at spotting value than he is. John Paulson. He knows a thing or two about spotting a crisis. He made his investors $15 billion as the subprime housing crisis unfolded in 2008–2009. And if another crisis comes, he’ll make a lot more money with his current positioning. This is a rare opportunity. You almost never see this many top investors get so interested in gold at the same time.Paulson has 11% of his fund invested in SPDR Gold Shares (GLD), which tracks the price of gold. He has about another 8% of his fund in gold mining companies.Dalio’s fund now holds 7% of its assets in gold and other mining stocks. That’s up from 2% during this time last year.Klarman has the smallest portion of his portfolio in gold and gold miners. But he’s actively adding to his gold holdings.Why Gold Could SoarRegular readers know that we consider gold a chaos hedge. We like chaos hedges as an asset class because we view them as insurance against disaster.They don’t always produce income or increase in value, but chaos hedges provide us the benefit of “sleep-at-night” protection.Right now, there are plenty of reasons why gold could soar: The powder keg that is the Middle East could explode. Ray Dalio. He’s the founder of the world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates. The fund has made $50 billion for its investors—more money than any other hedge fund. When these three whales all get excited about a certain investment, we should dig into it. And in this case, they’re buying gold. Is Trump’s New Executive Order Warning Us To Prepare For June 21? Donald Trump recently signed an executive order adding this white metal to the official “U.S. Critical Minerals Directory.” This labels the metal as “critical for national economy and security.” Why did Trump make this move now? According to the man who predicted Trump’s election and one of his first executive orders… It’s to prepare for June 21 – when this historic event could spike the price of this white metal 10x as its global supply is pushed to critical lows. Get all the details by clicking here.center_img Justin’s note: This week over at The Palm Beach Daily, my colleague Nick Rokke has been writing about one of the simplest and most effective trading strategies that you can start using today. It’s a way to follow the world’s top investors into the money.And recently, he discovered that three of them are buying one of our core recommendations here at Casey Research… By Nick Rokke, analyst, The Palm Beach DailyToday, we’re going whale hunting…In the sports world, a “whale” is a superstar player who’s entering free agency. Teams hunt these valuable whales because they can change a franchise’s fortune.Think of Michael Jordan in basketball, Peyton Manning in football, and Alex Rodriguez in baseball.You can ride these whales to championships and glory.The investing world has its own whales, too.Now, we can’t sign them as free agents… But we can do the next best thing—follow them into the money.As I showed you on Tuesday, one way to outperform the market is by following the best investors in the world. All you have to do is look inside their portfolios.Today, we’re following three of the world’s biggest fund managers into one of our favorite chaos hedges…I’ll show you what they’re buying in a second, but first let’s take a look at how this strategy works… Recommended Link The U.S. is printing more money and issuing more debt than ever. Inflation is on the rise. How to Get a Sneak PeekThere’s a simple way for the average guy to piggyback on the returns of the world’s top investors without hiring them…All funds that have more than $100 million under management need to file a quarterly report with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).The SEC calls it a 13F filing. It requires large funds to disclose the stocks they own 45 days after every calendar quarter.These reports are public record. So you can look at them yourself. (If you want to read through the 13F filings yourself, check out WhaleWisdom.)Here’s what they’re showing for three of the world’s best investors…Three Wise MenWhen one whale buys a position, that’s interesting. But when three of them buy the same position at the same time, it’s head-turning.The three titans I’m talking about are: The trade war could upset the world markets… and lead to a real war with China. — —last_img read more

Climate change vanishing ice and erratic rain pat

Climate change vanishing ice and erratic rain pat

first_imgClimate change, vanishing ice and erratic rain patterns are causing the wetlands in two Andean communities to shrink — and that’s a big problem for the communities of Miraflores and Canchayllo. The villagers depend on the puna, a set of alpine ecosystems above 13,000 feet that include grasslands and wetlands to graze sheep, cows, alpacas, llamas and vicuñas — animals that provide them with their livelihoods.Instead of looking for modern solutions to improve access to water, the villagers turned to an old one: centuries-old hydraulic systems that dot the Nor Yauyos Cochas Landscape Reserve, a state-protected natural area seven hours east of Lima. These ancient systems have been used to help irrigate the reserve’s pastures and provide nutrient-rich soil for hundreds of years.So in 2013, the communities teamed up with scientists from U.S. nonprofit The Mountain Institute (TMI) and reserve authorities to devise plans to revive their historic waterways, including canals, lakes and reservoirs. In addition to providing water, the project also would help mitigate the effects of climate change on the landscape, which has been degraded by grazing, melting glaciers and erratic rainfall.These efforts have earned the project international recognition, including an award in the Water Impact category in the Solution Search: Farming for Biodiversity contest in December 2017, organized by the International Climate Initiative. And this spring it won the St Andrews Prize for the Environment, sponsored by the University of St Andrews in Scotland and ConocoPhillips.Andean communities — often marginalized and impoverished — are struggling to adapt to climate change, says Bryan Mark, a glaciologist with Ohio State University. Since the 1970s, Peru has lost more than 40 percent of its ice surfaces, a critical water source for the capital city of Lima and the rest of the semi-arid coast. This loss caused the wetlands to shrink, leading herders to overgraze what pastures were left. Some villagers are diversifying their livelihood with activities in fields such as tourism, while others have moved to nearby towns and cities.The traditional practices that created and maintained the wetlands were disappearing, says Fernando Quiroz, the biologist in charge of the Nor Yauyos Cochas Landscape Reserve. “People have been here since pre-Incan times and they have always rotated grazing areas and organized traditional festivities to clean up ditches.” If the ditches are not cleaned regularly, they tend to clog.The ancient water systems the villagers wanted to revive once kept the wetlands verdant in the puna, an otherwise dry region sometimes described as an Andean tundra. When these systems functioned they created bofedales, prairies engineered by ancient Peruvians to retain meltwater and rainfall. In the Miraflores community, a pre-Hispanic reservoir lay empty and abandoned. Its sloped walls, made of big rocks, were still standing, but the channel that fed from it was damaged and almost invisible. In Canchayllo, ancient walls and canals draining from a natural lagoon stood dead and dry, abandoned.Enlisted by TMI, Álex Herrera, an archaeologist from the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia, explored the area using Google Earth in 2013. He confirmed the presence of ancestral water-management systems. The rock constructions he saw from above were at least 1,200 years old. To Herrera, the existence of wetlands created by the old irrigation systems suggested that water and sediments intentionally were harvested for herding. Herding requires grass, and water makes it grow. Sediment slows down water and makes soil humid longer, meaning better grass and more food for animals.The irrigation systems work by slowing the draining of rainfall and glacial meltwater high in the Andes, acting as a giant colander collecting clay, sandy silt and other soils that promote the growth of flora that alpacas and llamas like to eat, Herrera says.Restoring these hydraulic systems took two years — from 2013 to 2015 — and the participation of the community, the government and scientists from La Molina National Agrarian University. Funding and support came from local authorities, The Mountain Institute, the United Nations Development Programme and the German Ministry for the Environment through the U.N.’s Environment Programme. In some cases, restoration meant cleaning and rehabilitating abandoned wells and canals so they would collect rainfall. In others, the solution was a hybrid: installing PVC pipes alongside the ancient stone system that would carry rainwater to pasture lands.Earlier this year, one of the formerly abandoned canals reportedly carried almost six gallons of water per second during the dry season, which has reduced the impact of grazing livestock on the land and improved the quality of forage. Herders, previously forced to feed their animals in a dwindling ecosystem, now have larger areas available to rotate the grazing of their animals.Once the hydraulic system was restored in the village of Canchayllo and water was released in an area of 800 hectares, in 2016, the flow found its way through old veins naturally carved in the soil where water had once streamed, says anthropologist Jorge Recharte, director of TMI’s Andes program.”You have water filtration and water holes appearing in lower altitudes, not too far away,” Recharte says. “Wetlands reemerged in some areas and these are very important when your animals have offspring during the dry season, because the mothers will have green grass and water for their kin.” Rainfall moves slowly down the soil, grasslands retain more moisture and aquifers and springs in lower altitudes are replenished.Recharte says improved water access in communities such as Miraflores and Canchayllo has a wider impact: “Our hypothesis is that if the punas are well managed and rotated, water will be retained better and filtered better, and springs in lower altitudes will not dry up.”Experts concur that reviving this infrastructure requires maintenance work and effort, and hope that short-term results such as improved pastures will motivate villagers to continue doing so. In the case of abandoned or dry canals, Mark, the Ohio State glaciologist, thinks it’s worthwhile to consider interventions such as extending the canals to active springs or setting up new, smaller reservoirs to feed them.The Peruvian government has recognized the importance of irrigation for agricultural development, launching “Sierra Azul,” a fund of $123 million for projects that include, among other strategies, water harvesting and the revival of ancient hydraulic technologies. This public fund is good news for communities who already are working to improve water management strategies.Around 300 families, or about 1,200 people, in the Nor Yauyos Cocha Landscape Reserve have directly benefited, according to the Mountain Institute. Quiroz, the reserve biologist, hopes the message will reach beyond the Andes.”Sometimes city folk do not understand where they are getting their water and resources,” he said. The work to preserve these resources “is positive for everybody.” Elda L. Cantú is a reporter and a professor of international politics at ESAN University. She writes and reports for Radio Ambulante and has recently moved from Lima, Peru, to Mexico City, where she has joined the staff at the New York Times en Español. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

Washington state has moved a step closer toward ma

Washington state has moved a step closer toward ma

first_imgWashington state has moved a step closer toward making it more difficult for parents to receive exemptions from having their children receive a required immunization.The state Senate passed a bill on Wednesday night that removes the personal belief exemption from vaccinations for measles, mumps and rubella. However, the bill retains medical and religious exemptions and leaves intact personal belief exemptions for all other required immunizations. The bill, which passed 25-22, will now return to the House for passage of the version amended by the Senate. Upon its anticipated passage there, it will go to Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, who is expected to sign it.Current state law allows parents to not have their child get the MMR vaccine if they have a philosophical or personal objection. If the bill is signed into law, that exemption would be removed.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends all children get two doses of the MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age. Two doses of MMR vaccine are 97 percent effective against measles and 88 percent effective against mumps.State Sen. Annette Cleveland, who sponsored the bill, represents part of Clark County, which has been the site of a measles outbreak. There have been 73 confirmed cases in Clark County since the start of the year, but there are no new confirmed cases since March 18.”My community is under threat,” said Cleveland, according to The Seattle Times. “A vote against this bill is a vote against public health.”But state Sen. Ann Rivers, who also represents a portion of Clark County, said it should be up to parents whether to have their children vaccinated. “We keep hearing ‘science is settled,’ ” she said, according to the Times. “It’s not settled.”All 50 states have legislation requiring schoolchildren to be vaccinated. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, all states permit medical exemptions, and all but three (California, Mississippi and West Virginia) allow religious exemptions. Washington is one of 17 states that permit philosophical objections to school immunization requirements.California removed its personal beliefs exemption in 2015, which also included religious objections.Meanwhile, lawmakers in Arizona are moving in the other direction: considering bills to make it easier for parents to get exemptions for their kids from the usual childhood vaccinations. As KJZZ’s Will Stone reported for NPR last month, “Among other things, the Arizona bills would require that before immunizing a child, doctors hand over to parents a stack of papers that include the benefits and risks of each vaccine, the vaccine manufacturer’s product insert, the vaccine’s summary description from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and instructions on how to report a vaccine-related adverse event.”Another bill in the package would make it easier for Arizona parents to opt out, adding a new type of exemption in the state — an exemption based on religious objections.” Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

Dangerous cuts to the care packages of former re

Dangerous cuts to the care packages of former re

first_img“Dangerous” cuts to the care packages of former recipients of Independent Living Fund (ILF) support are exposing “false” government promises that they would not lose out when the fund closed say campaigners.One London council Waltham Forest, has admitted cutting the support packages of 28 former ILF-users since the fund closed at the end of June, even though it received nearly one million pounds from the government to maintain support for them and about 40 other former ILF-recipients for the rest of 2015-16.Of the 28 disabled people whose support has been cut in Waltham Forest, disabled campaigners are aware of at least eight who have experienced “really significant” cuts.Last month, Disability News Service (DNS) revealed that another London council, Hounslow, had slashed a disabled woman’s support by 48 hours a week after the fund closed.ILF was run by the Department for Work and Pensions and when it closed on 30 June was helping nearly 17,000 disabled people with the highest support needs to live independently.But the coalition government decided that it should be scrapped, promising instead that nine months’ worth of non-ring-fenced funding would be transferred through the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) to councils in England, and to devolved governments in Wales and Scotland.But the transition process has been hit by reports of delays in reassessments for former ILF-users and cuts to their care packages, and government pre-closure statements and pledges appear now to be falling apart.Two days before May’s election, chancellor George Osborne told an ILF-user on a regional television programme that the government would “demand” that councils spent the extra funding they would receive on former ILF-users, even though that money was not ring-fenced.And Esther McVey, at the time the minister for disabled people, said in 2012 that the government believed that “the needs of current users could be met in a more consistent and effective way within a single cohesive system”.Tracey Lazard, chief executive of Inclusion London, which is working with other user-led organisations to research the impact of the ILF closure, said the situation in Waltham Forest “does not look good”.She said: “What is really clear with Waltham Forest is the whole approach has been on the assumption that cuts are inevitable, even though they have got something like [£955,000] in ILF funding [from the government].“They have just gone on the basis that there are going to be huge cuts.”Lazard said individuals had not been given independent advocacy through the assessment process, as they should have been under the new Care Act, while there were concerns about the process itself, and the lack of clear information about how to appeal.She said: “It’s really shoddy and the impact is hugely dangerous.“One of our concerns is that for a lot of ILF-users they have had minimal or no contact with the council and they are not in contact with community organisations. They could effectively be suffering these cuts in silence.”Lazard said that government promises that closing ILF was just a “process issue” and was about “getting rid of an anomaly in the system” were “tantamount to lying”.She said: “It is absolutely false. It used [the closure] to save money. There was no evidence to suggest that there would not be cuts. To hide behind that is adding insult to injury.”Gabriel Pepper (pictured), one of the most prominent campaigners against ILF closure, has seen his support package cut by Waltham Forest from 72 hours to 38 hours a week since ILF closed.Last week, he and other disabled activists held a protest about the cuts outside the council’s offices.He said the cut to his support risked leaving him a “prisoner in my house”, while he feared that his quality of life could “disappear”.He said: “My council at Waltham Forest was given £955,686 to do this, so where is all the money going?“It’s being squandered on pot holes, flower beds outside the town hall, huge salaries for suited executives and fancy painting on shop fronts.”Another former ILF-recipient from Waltham Forest said the way the process had been conducted by the council had been “inhuman, messy”, with “very poor standards of information”, and care packages cut before people’s appeals against those decisions had been heard.She said: “I am coming across people who have been bullied [by the council]. The whole process has been a complete shambles.”She knows three carers who have been told by the council that their relatives would be better off in a care home now ILF has closed.She added: “There is an acceptance of the inevitability that people are going to be institutionalised, which I find really scary.”Neither the Department of Health nor DCLG had commented by noon today (11 September).Waltham Forest council had not replied by noon today to email and telephone messages from DNS asking for answers to a series of questions.last_img read more

A disabled employee of the Department for Work and

A disabled employee of the Department for Work and

first_imgA disabled employee of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) says he attempted to take his own life and experienced life-threatening physical health complications because of a culture of workplace bullying and discrimination.Paul* spokeout about his own experiences after reading a Disability News Service (DNS)report describing how DWPrepeatedly failed to make reasonableadjustments fordisabled people who were recruited into its Community Partners scheme.His accountof his own experiences working in a separate part of DWP adds to mountingevidence of disability discrimination within the department.Onlylast week,DNS reported how the proportion of DWP staff who say they have been victims ofdisability discrimination at work in the previous 12 months has risen by about50 per cent in just four years, according to Civil Service figures.There wasalso a rise of more than 10 per cent in just 12 months in the number of DWPstaff saying they had personally experienced disability discrimination at work,from 1,462 in 2017 to 1,612 in 2018.Thesestatistics, combined with other Civil Service figures, suggest that more than athird of disabled DWP staff experienced disability discrimination at work in2018.The latestevidence of discrimination within the government department responsible for themuch-criticised Disability Confident programme also further strains thescheme’s credibility.DWP itselfhas secured the status of Disability Confident Leader, the highest of threelevels within the scheme, which aims to work with employers to “challengeattitudes towards disability” and “ensure that disabled people have theopportunities to fulfil their potential and realise their aspirations”.Paul attemptedsuicide as a result of the abuse and discrimination he experienced, while theincreased stress levels led to significant, lasting and potentially fatal healthcomplications.He said hewas still waiting for all the reasonable adjustments he needed to do his job, morethan 18 months after he requested them.He said hehad received phone calls from fellow disabled employees who were in tearsbecause of the failure of the department to make the reasonable adjustmentsthey needed to do their job.Paul saidthat when he and others pass on concerns about the impact of bullying andharassment on their mental health, they are told to take anti-depressants orseek counselling, while the staff and managers responsible are moved to otherdepartments or rewarded with promotions.Hisexperiences with DWP have had, he said, “a devastating effect on my careerprospects, a devastating effect on my potential earnings, and a devastatingeffect on my potential life expectancy and ability to live on my own”.He added: “Infact, this has had a devastating effect on my life.”DWP’swidespread failings call into question its fitness to judge disabled people’seligibility for benefits, he added.A DWPspokesperson said: “We are absolutely committed to ensuring allcolleagues, including those with disabilities or health conditions, get thesupport they need to thrive. “The department has a duty of care to its colleagues andaims to lead by example as a Disability Confident employer, following bestpractice in recruiting, retaining and developing disabled staff. “This includes making workplace adjustments for staff whorequire them and providing a dedicated team to deliver this.“We have in place robust processes for colleagues andmanagers to follow in relation to diversity and inclusion and, while the numberof staff reporting disability discrimination is very small, we treat any caseextremely seriously.”She said DWP takes “active steps” to promote equality,and that more than 10,500 employers have signed up to Disability Confident,while the department was modernising its recruitment practices to make them “fairer and moreinclusive”. She added: “Shouldany individual feel they or their circumstances have not been treated withrespect; believe they have been treated unfairly; or not in line with ourinclusive principles, our policies and procedures provide a route forescalation so it can be considered and addressed.”*Not his real name. DNS has disguisedhis occupation within DWP and has not provided full details of the healthproblems caused by the discrimination he has experienced to avoid identifyinghimSamaritans can be contacted free, 24 hoursa day, 365 days a year, by calling 116 123 or emailing jo@samaritans.orgA 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

Marijuana Industry Braces for Shock of Trumps Trade War With China

first_img Image credit: Timothy Fadek | Getty Images Add to Queue Marijuana Industry Braces for Shock of Trump’s Trade War With China International Business –shares Next Article August 8, 2018 Virtually all the vaporizers sold in the US are made in China but the effect will be more far ranging that just vaporizers. 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. The Trump administration’s imposition of tariffs on China is expected to have a direct impact on several sectors of the marijuana industry — in particular, cannabis vaporizer companies.Others likely to be affected include:Cultivation operations that want to expand their greenhouse facilities.Growers that need to buy lighting equipment.Brands that purchase packaging from China.Businesses that buy materials made with Chinese-made steel and aluminum, such as extraction equipment.“If I was in the vape industry or the lighting industry or greenhouse industry, I would be pretty concerned that costs were going to go up as the result of a trade war,” said Kevin Hogan, president and co-founder of Oregrown, a vertically integrated cannabis company in Bend, Oregon.Here’s a review of the major factors developing around the issue for the cannabis industry.1. Businesses are anxious their costs could go up because of a trade war.On May 29, President Trump announced that by June 15 the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) should announce 25% tariffs on approximately $50 billion worth of Chinese imports containing “industrially significant technologies.”Included on the second list of items under the increased tariffs is the harmonized tariff schedule code 8543.70.99.40, which relates to vapor product devices, batteries intended for use in vaping devices and pre-filled pods and cartridges.That HTS code was one of 284 on the second list to undergo further review in a public notice and comment process, including a hearing in front of the USTR.The public comment period on that ended Aug. 1. Now vaporizer companies are waiting to hear if the USTR will strip out any HTS code related to vaporizer devices before the tariffs go into effect.The White House also announced on Aug. 1 it may up its proposed tariffs to 25 percent from 10 percent on another $200 billion of Chinese imports.According to the import-export data tracking website Datamyne, the United States imported $42 million worth of vaporizers or vaporizer parts under the above HTS code from China in 2017 and $800,000 worth of similar products from Hong Kong. The next three closest markets accounted for less than $500,000 in imports combined.Hogan said vaping products are among the largest-growing segment in cannabis “by a country mile,” and Oregrown doesn’t sell any vaporizers that aren’t made in China. None of the vaporizer brands Hogan’s store carries has told him to increase prices. But it’s on his radar.On the construction side, Hogan said he’s also concerned about the potential future cost of steel for greenhouses. However, a greenhouse builder he contracts with “got ahead of the curve” and ordered its steel before the tariffs were imposed so he was “insulated from the increase in costs.”Related: Luxury ‘Bong’ Maker Faces Unique Trademark Infringement Dilemma2. Consumers likely will have to pay more for vape cartridges.In states such as Oregon, a lot of the outdoor-grown cannabis flower that is sold on the low end of the market is processed into oil and sold for vape cartridges, so the tariffs directly affect one of the largest segments of the state’s cannabis industry.“So many companies are struggling to survive on all levels of the supply chain that these tariffs are like throwing salt in the wound,” said Brad Blommer, a cannabis attorney in Portland, Oregon. “Ultimately, the consumers are going to have to pay more.”“It really is a trade war,” said Josh Church, chief regulatory and compliance officer for Joyetech Group, a major manufacturer of vaporizers for both e-cigarettes and the cannabis industry with headquarters in Changzhou, China. “The difference between us and other industries is that all of the vaporizer manufacturers are based in China. For the cannabis industry, there are very few (U.S.) domestic manufacturers of vaporizers.”One of the key drivers of the Trump administration’s trade policy is to bring back jobs that the United States has lost to markets in other countries. But making cannabis vaporizers isn’t a legacy industry for American workers in the same way that steel manufacturing is. There have never been large-scale vaporizer manufacturers or e-cigarette companies in the United States.“The issue is that we as an industry don’t even have the ability to manufacture stateside,” Church said.Related: 3 Challenges You’re Likely To Face Once You Open for Business3. Repercussions from tariffs may not be immediately apparent.Jan Verleur, CEO of Miami-based VMR Products, which owns cannabis vaporizer product line Prohibited, said his company imports container-sized goods from Shenzhen, China, every week and he hasn’t seen the impact of the tariffs yet. He doesn’t expect to see anything show up in his financials until this fall at the earliest.“But the profit margins in the cannabis space as an overall rule are still healthy,” Verleur said. “I don’t think this is a hit that’s going to collapse anyone’s business.”Jeremy Heidl is president of Denver-based Organa Brands International, which has a large-scale vaporizer brand in the cannabis industry. As of last week he hadn’t seen the impact of the tariffs, but he’s waiting for it. “We expected it about a month ago, when the announcement was made,” Heidl said.Organa Brands also imports equipment, packaging and other items from China. “(The tariffs) make U.S. equipment nearly the same price, so I guess it’s having the intended effect there,” he added.Heidl also said it’s not a guarantee that consumers will see the added cost of the tariffs passed down to them.“It’s pretty difficult to raise cannabis prices in the market right now,” he said. “It will likely be absorbed” by the cannabis companies.But Arnaud Dumas de Rauly — co-founder and co-CEO of New York-based The Blinc Group, a vapor and cannabis technologies incubator — pointed out that the margins aren’t that large on the hardware.“Adding 25 percent tariffs on top of that really makes it hard to not pass this on to the consumer,” he said.Dumas de Rauly testified in front of the USTR last week, arguing that increasing the cost of vaporizers in states like New York and Florida, which have medical marijuana markets that don’t allow for smokable flower, will drive more patients to the black market. In the future, Dumas de Rauly would like to see the marijuana industry pay closer attention to business-as-usual regulations that could have a significant impact on company owners.“As a nascent industry, we are sometimes narrow-minded and focus specifically on the cannabis regulations and forget the rest,” he said.Morgan Fox, media relations director for the National Cannabis Industry Association, said he hadn’t heard of any members complaining about the tariffs, and the trade group hasn’t developed a strategy on the issue.“It’s definitely something that’s under discussion,” he said.Bart Schaneman can be reached at barts@mjbizdaily.com Brought to you by Marijuana Business Daily 7 min read Free Green Entrepreneur App Bart Schaneman Download Our Free Android Applast_img read more

FDA Bans Some Cilantro Imports After Finding Feces and Toilet Paper in

first_img Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business 1 min read Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Here’s something that might make you put down your burrito.On Monday, the FDA announced the partial ban of fresh cilantro imported from farms in Puebla, Mexico. The reason: farms in the region were found to lack running water and toilet facilities, with the FDA and health authorities discovering toilet paper and feces in fields.The FDA’s investigation of Puebla’s cilantro farming practices began after cilantro imported from the area was linked to annually recurring outbreaks of cyclosporiasis in 2013 and 2014, as well as potentially 2012. Cyclosposiasis is an intestinal illness, most commonly caused by eating or drinking a food or beverage contaminated with feces.Related: The Secret Menu Items at Your Favorite Restaurant ChainsThe ban will affect select shipments of fresh cilantro shipments from April to August of every year.Mexican companies selling cilantro that may be from Puebla must prove to health authorities that they have taken appropriate safety and health measures if they wish to export products to the U.S.  Related: 15 Absurdly Wonderful Bacon-Flavored Products FDA Image credit: Pixabay Add to Queue –sharescenter_img FDA Bans Some Cilantro Imports After Finding Feces and Toilet Paper in Fields Register Now » July 28, 2015 Reporter Kate Taylor Next Article last_img read more

Senate Committee Seeks Answers From Zuckerberg Over News Selection

first_img May 10, 2016 31shares Next Article Enroll Now for $5 Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. Reuters Senate Committee Seeks Answers From Zuckerberg Over News Selection Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brandcenter_img A U.S. Senate committee launched an inquiry on Tuesday into how social media website Facebook selects its news stories after a report that company employees blocked news about conservative issues from its “trending” list.The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation asked Facebook Chairman and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg in a letter to answer questions about the company’s news curation practices and its trending topics section.The investigation comes after Gizmodo reported on Monday that a former Facebook employee claimed workers “routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers,” while “artificially” adding other stories to the trending list.”Facebook must answer these serious allegations and hold those responsible to account if there has been political bias in the dissemination of trending news,” said U.S. Sen. John Thune, the chairman of the committee.The letter to Facebook includes requests for information on the organizational structure for the “Trending Topics feature.”Adam Jentleson, deputy chief of staff to Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, balked at the request in a statement provided to Reuters.”The Republican Senate refuses to hold hearings on [Supreme Court nominee] Judge [Merrick] Garland, refuses to fund the President’s request for Zika aid and takes the most days off of any Senate since 1956, but thinks Facebook hearings are a matter of urgent national interest,” Jentleson said.A Facebook spokesman said the company has received the Senate letter and is reviewing it. They also denied the Gizmodo report Tuesday in a statement provided to Reuters.”After an initial review, no evidence was found that the anonymous allegations are true,” a spokesman said.Tom Stocky, the vice president of Search at Facebook, responded to the allegations Monday night in a lengthy post published to the social media site saying there are “strict guidelines” for trending topic reviewers who “are required to accept topics that reflect real world events.”He added that those guidelines are under “constant review” and that his team would “continue to look for improvements.”Katie Drummond, the editor-in-chief of Gizmodo, called her publication’s story “accurate” in a statement released to Reuters Tuesday.Gizmodo’s report alarmed several social media users, with some conservatives in particular criticizing Facebook for alleged bias.”‘If a Conservative Speaks – and Facebook Censors Him – Does He Make a Sound?'” Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (@ScottWalker) wrote on Twitter Tuesday, with a link to a National Review story that detailed the allegations against Facebook.(Reporting by Amy Tennery; additional reporting by Dustin Volz in Washington; Editing by Alan Crosby) This story originally appeared on Reuters 3 min read Add to Queue Image credit: Shutterstock Facebooklast_img read more

YAO Network Makes BaaS 30 a Reality

first_imgDespite recent developments in the BaaS sector, BaaS remains far from maturity. Having cycled through two “versions”, many are hoping the increase in demand would spur BaaS to scale up as a sector in order to meet the growing need for a network of blockchain communities. The future platform, BaaS 3.0, should rightfully introduce new technical frameworks with outstanding features for both enterprises and individuals, providing a thriving ecosystem with diversified content for online and offline technology communities. While many platforms are still in the midst of grappling with the transition, YAO Network has been quick to respond to the call and has developed its own blockchain platform to make BaaS 3.0 a reality.Marketing Technology News: Study Finds Enterprises Rapidly Shifting to Hybrid, Multi-Cloud Business Model The concept of a Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) 3.0 platform suggests the best of both worlds – a centralised system of decentralised technology – and that is exactly what YAO Network strives to provide. Launched on 7 May 2019, the innovative platform garnered attention from the media as one of the few to launch a new generation of public infrastructure platform that will function as an ecosystem entry, a computation hub and a service market for blockchain communities. YAO Network Connects Businesses, Community and Developers BaaS 3.0blockchainMarketing Technology NewsNewsYAO Network Previous ArticleTechBytes with Andy Hunn, COO at ResonateNext ArticleNTT DATA Presents the Future of Digital Accelerationcenter_img YAO Network aims to be an entry point into the blockchain world, through which developers can access to mainstream blockchain networks and view relevant and updated information for their blockchain projects. YAO Network aims to provide supportive access tools and a great technological interface to facilitate the development of commercial applications, such as the building of an on-demand blockchain network for consortium and private blockchains.Marketing Technology News: Softeon Expands Retail and eCommerce Logistics Solution Footprint and SuccessHere is a simple illustration to demonstrate what YAO Network embodies in the larger framework.To make BaaS 3.0 possible and form a robust ecosystem that integrates commercial application, the tech community and application developers, the YAO Network has designed its platform to serve the following functionalities:1. Entry PointYAO Network aims to be an entry point into the blockchain world, through which developers can access to mainstream blockchain networks and view relevant and updated information for their blockchain projects. The YAO Network aims to provide supportive access tools and a great technological interface to facilitate the development of commercial applications, such as the building of an on-demand blockchain network for consortium and private blockchains.2. HubAs an entry builder, YAO Network aims to become a blockchain hub that connects developers with existing blockchains or new blockchain networks on-demand to facilitate the blockchain community. To do so, the YAO Network has included many features in its system including distributed identity, off-chain orales, incident feedback mechanism etc. to improve the interoperability and scalability of the blockchain network.3. MarketYAO Network provides an open Cloud Service Market for service providers to create their cloud services and sell them to terminal users under a visualized operation interface. Such services can be basic services such as access to a blockchain’s underlying framework or advanced services such as function modules and application service components etc.4. EcosystemYAO Network differs from traditional BaaS platforms in that it, unlike the rest, is a self-driven ecosystem. YAO, the value-carrier of the YAO Network ecosystem, encourages users to constantly generate technological services and content on the hub, thereby ensuring healthy growth and development of the whole ecosystem. Ideally, it is expected that the community will take over the reins from the YAO Network team and become the main contributor to the development of the YAO Network platform.Like time, technology waits for no man. Blockchain technology has already been gaining rapid traction around the globe and it is only a matter of time before the fourth industrial revolution hits, and with it, the mainstreaming of BaaS platforms like the YAO Network. It’s time to join the BaaS 3.0 revolution!Marketing Technology News: NextStage to Support YSEOP, a World Leader in AI Dedicated to Natural Language Generation, in View to Accelerating Growth, Particularly in the United States YAO Network Makes BaaS 3.0 a Reality PRNewswireJuly 15, 2019, 1:22 pmJuly 15, 2019 last_img read more

Fundamentals applications and methods of machine learning used in epigenetics

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Dec 20 2018Machine learning is the study of algorithms and statistical models that computer systems use to progressively improve their performance on a specific task. It is clearly visible that, machine learning is essential in this era in which we are living in, when there is huge amount of epigenetic data present coming from experiments and the clinic. Machine learning can aid in detection of epigenetic features in a given genome. Machine learning also helps in finding similarities and relationships between phenotypes and modifications in histones and genes. It also helps to accelerate the screening of lead compounds which are targeting markers for epigenetics diseases. Along with these uses, there are many other aspects around the study on epigenetics, which consequently bring us closer to realize our current hopes in precision medicine. Many new studies in precision medicine targeting epigenetic disease biomarkers are therefore now possible because of the fact that machine learning algorithms have accelerated processes used for data analyses. Therefore, in order to take full benefit of machine learning algorithms, one should get familiar with the pros and cons of them as it is one way to bring optimum use out of them.In this review, the authors discuss the fundamentals and the important points of machine learning, the applications of machine learning, the methods which are used in the field of epigenetics and their features. The advantages and disadvantages of using machine language for research in epigenetics are also discussed.Source: https://benthamscience.com/last_img read more

New solar cells offer you the chance to print out solar panels

first_img The 200 square metre array was installed in just one day by a team of five people. No other energy solution is as lightweight, as quick to manufacture, or as easy to install on this scale.Our research team manufactured the solar modules using standard printing techniques; in fact, the machine that we use typically makes wine labels. Each solar cell consists of several individual layers printed on top of each other, which are then connected in series to form a bank of cells. These cells are then connected in parallel to form a solar module.Since 1996, we have progressed from making tiny, millimetre-sized solar cells to the first commercial installation. In the latest installation each module is ten metres long and sandwiched between two layers of recyclable plastic. At the core of the technology are the specialised semiconducting polymer-based inks that we have developed. This group of materials has fundamentally altered our ability to build electronic devices; replacing hard, rigid, glass-like materials such as silicon with flexible inks and paints that can be printed or coated over vast areas at extremely low cost. Australia’s first commercial installation of printed solar cells, made using specialised semiconducting inks and printed using a conventional reel-to-reel printer, has been installed on a factory roof in Newcastle. The solar cells can be installed with little more than sticky tape. Credit: University of Newcastle, Author provided This roof in Newcastle has become the first in Australia to be covered with specially printed solar cells. Credit: University of Newcastle, Author provided New method to manufacture organic solar cells Citation: New solar cells offer you the chance to print out solar panels and stick them on your roof (2018, August 30) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-08-solar-cells-chance-panels-roof.html As a result, these modules cost less than A$10 per square metre when manufactured at scale. This means it would take only 2-3 years to become cost-competitive with other technologies, even at efficiencies of only 2-3%.These printed solar modules could conceivably be installed onto any roof or structure using simple adhesive tape and connected to wires using simple press-studs. The new installation at Newcastle is an important milestone on the path towards commercialisation of the technology – we will spend the next six months testing its performance and durability before removing and recycling the materials. We think this technology has enormous potential. Obviously our technology is still at the trial stage, but our vision is a world in which every building in every city in every country has printed solar cells generating low-cost sustainable energy for everyone. This latest installation has brought the goal of solar roofs, walls and windows a step closer.center_img This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Provided by The Conversation Ultimately, we imagine that these solar cells could even benefit those people who don’t own or have access to roof space. People who live in apartment complexes, for example, could potentially sign up to a plan that lets them pay to access the power generated by cells installed by the building’s owner or body corporate, and need never necessarily “own” the infrastructure outright.But in a fractured and uncertain energy policy landscape, this new technology is a clear illustration of the value of taking power into one’s own hands. 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