Sept. 11 museum is called a monument to unity

first_imgNEW YORK | Leaders of the soon-to-open Sept. 11 museum portrayed it as a monument to unity and resilience ahead of its dedication Thursday, saying that the struggles to build it and conflicts over its content would be trumped by its tribute to both loss and survival.“It tells how in the aftermath of the attacks, our city, our nation and people across the world came together,” former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the memorial foundation’s chairman, said at a news conference Wednesday. “This museum, more than any history book, will keep that spirit of unity alive.”After Thursday’s dedication, then six days of being open around-the-clock to Sept. 11 survivors, victims’ relatives, first responders and lower Manhattan residents, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum opens to the public May 21. It is a testament to how the terrorist attacks that day shaped history, from its heart-wrenching artifacts to the underground space that houses them amid the remnants of the fallen twin towers’ foundations.As museum leaders see it, it is both a site of remembrance and a palpably physical forum for examining the post-Sept. 11 world. To museum Director Alice Greenwald, “it is about understanding our shared humanity”; to Bloomberg, a reminder “that freedom is not free.”Yet the memorial also reflects the complexity of crafting a public understanding of the terrorist attacks and reconceiving ground zero.Over the years, the museum faced financing squabbles and construction challenges. The museum and the memorial plaza above it cost a total of $700 million to build and will cost $60 million a year to run, more than Arlington National Cemetery and more than 15 times as much as the museum that memorializes the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. Sept. 11 museum organizers have noted that security alone costs about $10 million a year.Conflicts over the museum’s content underlined the need to memorialize the dead while also honoring survivors and rescuers, of balancing the intimate with the international.Holocaust and war memorials have confronted some of the same questions. But the 9/11 museum exemplifies the work it takes to “develop a museum program amidst this range of powerful feelings and differing individuals and issues that get raised,” said Bruce Altshuler, the director of New York University’s museum studies program. He isn’t involved in the Sept. 11 museum.The museum harbors both personal possessions and artifacts that became public symbols of survival and loss. There is the battered “survivors’ staircase” that hundreds used to escape the burning skyscrapers, the memento-covered last column removed during the ground zero cleanup and the cross-shaped steel beams that became an emblem of remembrance. (An atheists’ group has sued, so far unsuccessfully, seeking to stop the display of the cross).Portraits and profiles describe the nearly 3,000 people killed by the Sept. 11 attacks and the 1993 trade center bombing. Almost 2,000 oral histories give voice to the memories of survivors, first responders, victims’ relatives and others. In one, a mother remembers a birthday dinner at the trade center’s Windows on the World restaurant the night before her daughter died at work at the towers.The museum also looks at the lead-up to Sept. 11 and its legacy — and that has sparked some of the controversy it has faced.Members of the museum’s interfaith clergy advisory panel raised concerns that it plans to show a documentary film, about al-Qaida, that they said unfairly links Islam and terrorism. The museum has said the documentary is objective; Bloomberg said it took care “to make sure that nobody thinks a billion people who practice one religion were responsible.”While some Sept. 11 victims’ relatives have embraced the museum, others have denounced its $24 general-public ticket price as unseemly and its underground location as disrespectful, particularly because unidentified remains are being stored in a private repository there. Other victims’ families see it as a fitting resting place.Charles G. Wolf, who lost his wife, Katherine, said he felt the tug of mixed emotions as he anticipated seeing the museum Thursday.“I’m looking forward to tomorrow, and I’m dreading tomorrow,” he said Wednesday. “It brings everything up.”Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

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New tanker to keep community safe

first_imgBy Jessica Anstice A new ultra-light tanker will help Upper Beaconsfield Fire Brigade keep the local community safe, thanks to State Government funding….[To read the rest of this story Subscribe or Login to the Gazette Access Pass] Thanks for reading the Pakenham Berwick Gazette. Subscribe or Login to read the rest of this content with the Gazette Digital Access Pass subscription.last_img

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McNeese State’s Johnson Named Women’s Basketball Player of the Week

first_imgFRISCO, Texas – McNeese State junior guard Jayln Johnson has been named Southland Conference Women’s Basketball Player of the Week, the league office announced Monday. Each school’s sports information director nominates and votes for the players of the week, though is not permitted to vote for his or her own player. Honorable mention this week goes to Central Arkansas sophomore guard Maggie Proffitt, Northwestern State junior guard Janelle Perez, A&M-Corpus Christi junior guard Shay Weaver and Lamar junior guard JaMeisha Edwards. To receive honorable mention, a player must receive votes from 25 percent of the Southland women’s basketball sports information directors.center_img Johnson helped McNeese State to a 2-0 record last week including a win against Stephen F. Austin in its Southland Conference opener on the road.  Johnson began the week by dishing out a career high 14 assists in the final non-conference game of the season in a win over Texas Southern.  She played an important part in the win over SFA, especially at the free throw line where she was a perfect 14 of 14.  Johnson also led McNeese State in scoring against the Ladyjacks with a season-high 25 points.  For the week, Johnson averaged 20 points per game, 8.5 assists per game and shot 91.3 percent from the free throw line.last_img read more

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Invasive plants a fast-growing threat to India’s rhinos

first_imgAnimals, Archive, Biodiversity, Conservation, Environment, Featured, Invasive Species, Mammals, One-horned Rhinos, Plants, Protected Areas, Rhinos, Wildlife Article published by Isabel Esterman In 2018, biologists observed the invasive plant Parthenium, known locally as congress grass, establishing itself in grasslands of India’s Pobitora National Park.Invasive species threaten protected areas in Assam state, and herbivores like the greater one-horned rhinos that live within them, by crowding out the native plants animals rely on for food.Each of Assam state’s four rhino reserves currently faces threats from invasive plants including Parthenium, Mimosa, Mikania and water hyacinth.Experts are contemplating the use of several strategies to tackle invasive plants, including manual removal and the introduction of biological control agents such as the Mexican beetle that feeds on Parthenium. On a gloomy afternoon in May 2018, conservation biologist Bibhab Talukdar was visiting Pobitora National Park in India’s Assam state. As he rode an elephant into the grasslands at the core of the park he was met with an alarming sight: a luxuriant growth of a low, bushy herb with small green leaves and creamy white flowers. Locally known as congress grass, this plant, Parthenium hysterophorus, is native to the Americas and an alien species in India.Talukdar, the chair of the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Asian Rhino Specialist Group and CEO of the NGO Aaranyak, says he was worried because Parthenium is a highly invasive plant with a history of damaging local ecosystems in more than 20 countries around the world. Australia is the prime example, with vast swaths of native rangelands and summer crops under pressure from the weed.If its spread in Pobitora isn’t checked in time, Talukdar says he believes Parthenium could spell trouble for the park’s 102 greater one-horned rhinoceroses (Rhinoceros unicornis) by smothering the native species they feed on.Parthenium can be seen growing vigorously in the grassland areas inside Pobitora National Park. Conservationists are worried the invasive weed will crowd out native fodder plants. Image courtesy of Bibhab Talukdar.It’s not clear how and when exactly Parthenium arrived in India. The popular theory is that the seeds arrived in the 1950s, piggybacking on consignments of grains imported as part of a U.S. government food-assistance program. The weed was first reported growing on trash heaps in 1956 in Pune, in the state of Maharashtra.Although Parthenium was first spotted in Assam in the 1980s, it had not previously been reported in the core areas of Pobitora. Nine years ago, when Talukdar visited the park as part of a team of researchers that studied the status and distribution of invasive plants in the rhino habitat, such Parthenium growths weren’t observed. “Its arrival in the park seems to be recent,” he says.Silent stranglersParthenium is just the latest addition to half a dozen invasive plants colonizing rhino ranges across Assam, the Indian state that harbors more than two-thirds of the world’s one-horned rhino population in four protected areas.According to a 2011 article in the journal Pachyderm, the already established invasive plants in Assam’s rhino ranges are Mimosa invisa, Mikania micrantha (the “mile-a-minute” vine), Chromolaena odorata (Siam weed) and Ipomoea carnea (pink morning glory). All were identified in India’s Fifth National Report on Biological Diversity in 2014 as invasive plant species responsible for harming local ecosystems.A Chromolaena infested area in Manas National Park. Chromolaena is replacing native vegetation in the park. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.“You’ve got to add Parthenium, Eicchronia carssipes [water hyacinth] and Lantana camara to the list,” says Iswar Chandra Barua, a professor of agronomy at Assam Agricultural University in Assam’s Jorhat district.Barua, who has been studying the dynamics of phytoinvasion in Assam for over a decade now, says all four of Assam’s rhino reserves — the national parks of Kaziranga, Orang, Pobitora and Manas — are currently reeling under attack from these invasive plants.Each presents a unique danger, Barua says. Siam weed and water hyacinth are “driver species,” capable of decimating native plants without any assistance from accompanying environmental change; Parthenium and Mimosa possess tremendously high competitive ability, known as allelopathy, which inhibits the growth of indigenous plants in areas colonized by these weeds; Ipomoea stems form thick mats that block natural water flows, making it  the most troublesome aquatic weed after water hyacinth, which is notorious for clogging water bodies; Lantana exudes poison from its roots, killing off native flora; Mikania produces around 40,000 seeds every year and colonizes forest areas at a very rapid pace by choking and smothering grasses and tree saplings.“Hundreds of indigenous plants, including the rhino’s favorite fodder species, are under direct pressure from these invasives,” Barua says.An Indian muntjac, also called barking deer, is seen grazing in an area inside Orang National Park where Chromolaena has started to infest. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.Different parks, different problemsIn Kaziranga National Park, home to 2,413 rhinos per the 2018 census, Mimosa can be seen overrunning natural grasslands in several ranges. However, the situation has improved since the early 2000s, when the problem was more acute. Barua credits the natural floods that have hit the park in recent years. “During the annual flood, the entire park remains inundated for days and sometimes weeks. This works somewhat as a natural check on the growth of Mimosa,” he says.However, a potential threat lurking on the park’s doorstep is Ludwigia peruviana (Peruvian water primrose). A 2017 study led by Barua found that this semi-aquatic weed has damaged already around 200 square kilometers (77 square miles) of marshland plant communities in Karbi Anglong district, where part of Kaziranga is located. He says Ludwigia will likely infest Kaziranga marshlands if no measures are taken to check its spread. “Kaziranga National Park is located pretty close to Ludwigia-infested areas. As such it could just be a matter of time for the weed to sneak into the park’s marshlands. If we don’t step up vigil now, it could be all over inside Kaziranga in a couple years.” Mimosa plants in  Orang National Park. The plant is believed to be responsible for a decline in the park’s wet alluvial grassland. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.In Orang National Park, home to 101 rhinos, Mimosa appears to be the most severe current threat to the ecosystem. From 1987 to 2008, Orang saw its wet alluvial grassland shrink by 12.8 percent, and dry savanna grassland and degraded grassland increase by 9.25 percent and 6.51 percent respectively, mainly due to the impact of Mimosa, according to a 2011 study on land cover change in the park. Manas National Park is also experiencing a phytoinvasion, with Chromolaena and Mikania infesting large patches of forest. With a density of 9.4 to 15.1 plants per square meter, according to a 2004 survey, Chromolaena is overrunning areas of already-degraded vegetation along the southern border of the park, while Mikania is colonizing riverine grassland patches and forest edges.In Pobitora National Park, the biggest threat is Ipomoea, primarily a colonizer of grasslands. The spread of Ipomoea inside the park has sparked competition among indigenous grass species and the weed for space and nutrients. In addition, as Talukdar observed, Parthenium is an emerging challenge. Over the last year, the weed has been seen spreading alarmingly along the park’s grassland areas.Mikania plants in Orang National Park. Mikania has also been identified as a threat in Nepal’s Chitwan National Park, home to the world’s second largest population of greater one-horned rhinos. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.Effects on rhinosRhinos are already suffering as Assam’s ecosystems are hit by these invasive plants. “First, they choke and smother native plants on which rhinos feed, leading to shrinkage of fodder in protected areas,” Talukdar says. “Second, when species such as Mimosa, which is thorny, take over grasslands, it becomes difficult for rhinos to graze, which pushes the animals to stray out of the safety of the park and thus makes them vulnerable to poaching.”Recognizing these threats, the New Delhi Declaration on Asian Rhinos 2019, signed by five Asian rhino range nations on 28 February at the Indian capital, has mandated research on invasive species threatening rhino reserves along with other habitat parameters.A 2015 report by the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) holds invasive plants responsible for the increase in rhino straying incidents in Pobitora. The report says the rapid growth of invasive plants including Ipomoea, and the accompanying depletion of native fodder species in the park, has led to an increase in crop-raiding incidents by rhinos in villages on the park’s fringes.“Because the invasive weeds are choking out grasslands, rhinos are increasingly straying out to forage on crops in neighboring farmlands,” says Mukul Tamuly, the forest range officer at Pobitora.Moreover, some invasive plants contain toxic compounds that can harm rhinos and other herbivores that ingest them. “Lantana camara, for example, contains pentacyclic triterpenoids, a hepatotoxic compound known as lantadene. If rhinos feed on lantana leaves, it could inflict significant liver injuries on them,” Tamuly says.A greater one-horned rhinoceros in West Bengal state’s Jaldapara National Park. Invasive species including Mikania are also found in that state’s rhino reserves. Image by Udayan Dasgupta for MongabayFighting invasive weedsPlants that become successful invaders are fast-growing and highly adaptable to new environments. When they are transported to ecosystems where their natural predators are not present, such species can rapidly overrun indigenous plants.“Take, for instance, the case of Parthenium,” says D.J. Rajkhowa, a senior agronomist and joint director of the India Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Nagaland Center. “In alien environments such as that of India it is free from its natural enemies like the Mexican beetle, Zygogramma bicolorata, that feeds only on Parthenium leaves. It gives the weed a competitive edge and more resources to grow, reproduce, spread and eventually outcompete indigenous plant species.”Due to their higher phenotypic plasticity — the ability to develop differently in different environments — invasive plants can adapt to environmental fluctuations. This helps them spread and establish in new areas. Rajkhowa cites the example of Mikania, which is now seen growing in a range of habitats from terrestrial to littoral.Moreover, many invasive plants are cryptic in nature and have the ability to go undetected for years, or their damaging impacts are not immediately clear, making it difficult to control these species.Degraded forest patches such as this one in Orang National Park, are particularly prone to phytoinvasion. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.Given these challenges, there are three methods to control invasive plants: mechanical removal; spraying chemicals; and using biological control agents.The mechanical removal method, which involves hand weeding, is the simplest way, but is labor-intensive, expensive and has to be repeated consistently. It is widely used in Assam’s rhino reserves, but has yielded little results. “We keep uprooting Mimosa plants at regular intervals, but they sprout up again at a very rapid speed,” says Chakrapani Rai, the forest range officer at Orang National Park. “We’ve also applied controlled burning. Even that’s turned out to be futile. The weed’s spread seems to be unstoppable.”Spraying chemicals is considered unviable in protected areas as it could have disastrous effects on wildlife and the ecosystem.The biological control method, a far more complicated process that entails releasing organisms that feed on the targeted species, is touted as a less dangerous and potentially effective method. India’s Project Directorate of Biological Control (PDBC), a government agency based in the city of Bengaluru, is tasked with the responsibility of ensuring the hazard-free introduction, handling and release of biological control agents.Attempts to use biological controls against Parthenium have achieved mixed results in India: the biocontrol agent for the plant, the Mexican beetle, has shown successful results in Bengaluru, but has failed in Delhi.Rajkhowa says the best way to deal with the problem is to develop a plan that combines all available methods. “In developing an integrated weed management plan, biological control should be the key component. Till suitable biocontrol agents are found, the emphasis should be on mechanical removing.”So far biological control agents haven’t been used in Assam. But Rajkhowa says he thinks it’s a strategy that should be considered. “Given the state’s moderate climatic conditions, it might just work.”Orang National Park located in northern Assam is home to 101 rhinos. Image by Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya for Mongabay.But the biocontrol method has its own risks: an organism introduced as a biocontrol agent to contain a particular invader may decimate other species as well, turning into an invader itself. The most infamous example of biocontrol going wrong is Australia’s cane toad catastrophe.  Cane toads were introduced in 1935 to control cane beetles in Queensland’s sugarcane crops. But in the span of a few decades they spread all over Australia, causing severe damage to local ecosystems.Assam Agricultural University’s Barua says he favors exploring other alternatives. While he, too, endorses the idea of an integrated weed management plan, he says such efforts should prioritize exploring ways to use invasive plants as raw materials for local industries.There has been some success on this front. Water hyacinth has been used to make an array of products such as mats and bags; the craft now employs about 3,500 local artisans in northeastern India. Silkworm rearers in Karbi Anglong have started using Mikania as a host plant for Eri silk, for want of the primary host plant, castor (Ricinus communis). Research shows there is also potential to commercially exploit Mikania to this end, which could in turn help control the weed. Bodo tribal weavers near Manas National Park are experimenting with using Chromolaena as a natural dye, while lantana is being used as a raw material for furniture — an initiative that has seen some success in controlling the weed.“If such initiatives find commercial footing,” Barua says, “they’ll not only contribute toward effective weed management but also boost local livelihoods.”FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

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Inclusion to national pool added motivation for Meneses

first_imgShe was chosen as one of the players in the team that competed in the AVC Asian Women’s U23 Volleyball Championship where the Philippines finished in seventh place out of 12 competing countries.READ: Arado eager to prove worth in national team poolMeneses, however, doesn’t think her time in the Asian tournament played a big part in the selection committee’s decision to include her in the pool.“I really didn’t expect that I would be included,” said Meneses, who joined other notable middle blockers Dindin Santiago, Aby Maraño, Maika Ortiz, and Mika Reyes. “And I don’t know if my time with the U23 was a factor.”ADVERTISEMENT ‘Bad Boys for Life’ debuts so good with box office top spot Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next De Leon grateful to have difference-maker Morado as setter Palace: Crisis over ABC-CBN franchise unlikely Prince Harry: ‘No other option’ but to cut royal ties LATEST STORIES Taal Volcano evacuees warned against going home ‘1917’ takes top honor at the Producers Guild Awards MOST READ Duterte promises to look for funds to establish rail transport in Cebu Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Panelo: Duterte only wants to emulate strong political will of Marcos ‘It’s not my shame’: Why Filipino women are calling out sexual misconduct on social media “Of course if you ask any player, they’d always say that they really want to be a part of the national team because you’re representing your whole country,” said Meneses after her Golden Tigresses turned back Adamson, 25-12, 25-18, 22-25, 25-19 in the UAAP Season 79 women’s volleyball tournament.READ: Valdez, Santiago lead PH volleyball nat’l team poolFEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return“It really is inspiring when you represent your country because it makes you train harder than ever before.”But this stint is not her first crack at international play. UST’s Ria Meneses (Middle). Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netRia Meneses’ inclusion to the national team pool not only cemented her place as one the best in her position, it also served as another motivation for her to train harder.The University of Santo Tomas middle blocker was part of the 25-strong pool from which the line-ups for future tournaments will come from.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Unfree labour

first_imgThere is this movie starring Bill Murray. He’s up in Pennsylvania reporting on “Groundhog Day” and every morning he awakens to experience the exact events from the day before, in a seemingly infinite loop.Ever so often I get this same feeling during the 28 years I’ve returned to Guyana. Take this claim just made by some in the run-up to Emancipation Day that Indian indentured labourers undercut the bargaining power of the freed slaves after 1838 and that is what pushed them off the plantations. “It’s like déjà vu all over again” as Yogi Berra was alleged to have quipped.In vain, I’ve pointed out over the years that it’s futile to play the “blame game” when, in the development of capitalism, after constructing its base on the back of African chattel slave labour (following genocide on the indigenous peoples), it went on to appropriate the very form of unfree labour they had used before slavery – indentured labour (of Europeans). There is no question the planters did intend to undercut the bargaining power of the freed slaves after Emancipation – but the new 19th Century indentureds were also contributing to what Marx dismissed as “primitive accumulation” in the drive of capitalism to create what he ironically called “doubly free labour”: free to sell their labour-power to anyone they choose, and freed from any ownership over the means of production.But I was just as unsuccessful in pointing out that the details of their claim were so blatantly incorrect, it suggested that more was at play than careless historiography. In 1998, I noted in my paper, “Aetiology of an ethnic riot”: “It was not Indian labour that broke the back of African attempts to wrest higher wages from the planters. Rather, if labour were to be “blamed”, it was more the Portuguese and, ironically, fellow Africans from both the WI and Africa, who played key roles.The ex-slaves called the strike of 1847 at a point of financial crisis for the planters who, encouraged by the indentureship of 15,747 Portuguese, 12,897 Africans from the WI and 6957 Africans from Africa – a total of 35,601 – compared with only 8692 Indians, held off the demands for higher wages. After 1848, by when more than half of them had moved into villages and towns, the unskilled ex-slaves, by and large, decided to make their living off the plantations because, even though Indian indenture was suspended between 1838-1845 and then again in 1849-50, there was no movement back to the plantation by the Africans, nor was there any increase in the wage scale.” Available land was the pull factor for the move.What is also overlooked is that eventually there were more indentured Africans arriving from the Caribbean (40,783) than the Portuguese (30,078) from Madeira and from Africa (13,355). In fact between 1835 and 1838 exactly 5000 ex-African slaves had been brought from the smaller islands into Guyana. Somehow, these African indentured servants – mostly from Barbados – have been forgotten. Ironically, there were several instances recorded of Indian indentureds protesting that the West Indian indentureds were undercutting their wages!I wrote to one interlocutor in 2004, “The point I have been making is that we are going against the analyses of history made by eminent West Indian historians such as Williams and Rodney (among others) when we lay blame to the immigrants – whether Portuguese, Indian, Chinese, West Indians or Africans who were all indentured. It was the working of the systems imposed on us by the British, whether political (imperialism), economic (pre-capitalist) or cultural (cultural hegemony), that kept us all in thrall. Today, we are still busy blaming each other for our mess and not questioning whether those bequeathed systems are not still contributing to our problems. And that we should get busy, as a first step, in modifying them to assist in leading to greater equity and justice for all of us.”Twelve years later, after capitalism’s latest globalised financialised phase has imploded, the travails of “doubly free” labour continues as Britain, Europe and the US blame immigrants who “took away their jobs”.What will I wake up tomorrow to?last_img read more

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Claudio Ranieri targets £7m midfielder as first Leicester signing

first_img Nice midfielder Nampalys Mendy (R) 1 Leicester have launched a £7million bid to sign Nice midfielder Nampalys Mendy.New Foxes boss Claudio Ranieri wants to bring the 23-year-old former Monaco star to the King Power Stadium and add much-needed steel to his midfield.Leicester scouts monitored Mendy last season and were impressed with his leadership qualities as stand-in captain for the French side.And now, according to French newspaper L’Equipe, a bid in the region of £7m from the Foxes could persuade Nice to part with their key man.Mendy, who has a contract at the Ligue 1 club until 2017, rose through the ranks at Monaco before joining the Allianz Riviera club in 2013.last_img

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Senate approves pension bill

first_imgWASHINGTON – The Senate approved and sent to the White House pension legislation to give millions of Americans a better chance of getting the retirement benefits they’ve earned while sparing taxpayers from possibly paying for failed pension plans. The legislation, passed 93-5 late Thursday, also provides new incentives for young workers to enroll in 401(k) plans, reflecting the trend away from traditional employer-based pensions. “There is little doubt this bill will be the foundation on which the future of our retirement system rests,” said Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. The vote was the last before the Senate leaves for a four-week summer break and gives lawmakers a major accomplishment to speak of when they meet their constituents back home. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhy these photogenic dumplings are popping up in Los Angeles“This bill says to millions of Americans who fear their pensions will disappear that help is on the way,” said Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass. He noted that in the past five years, pension savings of about $8 billion have been lost as companies terminate their plans, shifting benefit responsibilities onto the federal agency that insures such plans, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. A vote on the pension bill became possible after leaders from the two parties agreed to put off final action on a $469 billion spending package for the military until September. It followed a vote on the other outstanding issue, an unsuccessful attempt to simultaneously raise the minimum wage and cut inheritance taxes for multimillionaires. The pension bill sets new funding rules for employers with defined-benefit plans and clamps down on companies that have fallen in arrears in meeting their funding obligations. In order to make a dent in underfunding now estimated at $450 billion, the bill requires plans to be 100 percent funded, up from the current 90 percent level, giving companies seven years to reach that goal. Plans that are seriously underfunded face restrictions, such as a ban on increasing benefits, and must make accelerated catch-up contributions. The White House had stressed that pension legislation would be acceptable only if it strengthened current funding requirements, and two chief House sponsors, Majority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, Republican from Lancaster, said the bill met that condition. They cited figures they said showed that changes in the bill significantly increase the amount of contributions employers must make to meet their pension promises. The five senators voting against the bill were Sens. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif.; Robert Byrd, D-W.Va.; Tom Coburn, R-Okla.; John Cornyn, R-Texas; and Russ Feingold, D-Wis. Two senators, Democrats Max Baucus of Montana and Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut, did not vote. The legislation carves out special treatment for the airline industry, giving airlines that are in bankruptcy court and have frozen their pension plans an extra 10 years above the seven years for other plans to become financially whole.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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Poor Paris! Her pet bit her

first_imgParis Hilton got no love this week from her pet kinkajou Baby Luv in fact, the racoon-like animal bit her. The heiress was not badly hurt but did visit a hospital emergency room to receive a tetanus shot, her publicist, Elliot Mintz, told The Associated Press.. Hilton was frolicking with her exotic pet “the way some people play with their cats and dogs” when the animal became excited, Mintz said. “Baby Luv bit her. It’s a superficial bite on her left arm,” he said. “Yesterday she did two photo shoots and two magazine covers,” Mintz said. “She’s OK, she’s fine. Anyone in this situation would do well to have the wound looked at.” Baby Luv was checked out by a veterinarian Wednesday. “I don’t view kinkajous as aggressive animals. The same kind of thing could have occurred with a German Shepherd,” Mintz said. 165Let’s talk business.Catch up on the business news closest to you with our daily newsletter. Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREFrumpy Middle-aged Mom: My realistic 2020 New Year’s resolutions. Some involve doughnuts. Hilton, concerned that she was bleeding, called Mintz at 3 a.m., and he took her to the hospital. “She was seen by a doctor, who treated the wound, gave her a tetanus shot, cleaned the wound and applied something to it,” Mintz said. The 25-year-old “Simple Life” star and her publicist left the hospital around 5:30 a.m. Mintz said Hilton’s arm did not appear to be swollen the next day. She also felt well enough to continue promotions for her highly anticipated debut album “Paris,” set for release Aug. 22. Hilton’s breathy single “Stars Are Blind” has already jumped up Billboard’s dance music charts.last_img read more

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Web Development Reading List #172: On Reporting Bugs, DNS Subdomain Takeovers, And Sustainable UX

first_imgAs web developers, we all approach our work very differently. And even when you take a look at yourself, you’ll notice that the way you do your work does vary all the time. I, for example, have not reported a single bug to a browser vendor in the past year, despite having stumbled over a couple. I was just too lazy to write them up, report them, write a test case and care about follow-up comments.This week, however, when integrating the Internationalization API for dates and times, I noticed a couple of inconsistencies and specification violations in several browsers, and I reported them. It took me one hour, but now browser vendors can at least fix these bugs. Today, I filed two new issues, because I’ve become more aware again of things that work in one browser but not in others. I think it’s important to change the way we work from time to time. It’s as easy as caring more about the issues we face and reporting them back.The post Web Development Reading List #172: On Reporting Bugs, DNS Subdomain Takeovers, And Sustainable UX appeared first on Smashing Magazine.From our sponsors: Web Development Reading List #172: On Reporting Bugs, DNS Subdomain Takeovers, And Sustainable UX Web Development Reading List #172: On Reporting Bugs, DNS Subdomain Takeovers, And Sustainable UXYou are here: HomeWeb DesignWeb Development Reading List #172: On Reporting Bugs, DNS Subdomain Takeovers, And Sustainable UX Related postsInclusive Components: Book Reviews And Accessibility Resources13th December 2019Should Your Portfolio Site Be A PWA?12th December 2019Building A CSS Layout: Live Stream With Rachel Andrew10th December 2019Struggling To Get A Handle On Traffic Surges10th December 2019How To Design Profitable Sales Funnels On Mobile6th December 2019How To Build A Real-Time Multiplayer Virtual Reality Game (Part 2)5th December 2019 Posted on 3rd March 2017Web Design FacebookshareTwittertweetGoogle+sharelast_img read more

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