Cabinet OKs elimination of minimum finance test for public auto insurer Eby

first_imgVICTORIA – The minister responsible for British Columbia’s financially challenged public auto insurer says the government has suspended regulations that had forced the Crown agency to meet minimum financial tests.David Eby said Wednesday that the provincial cabinet approved the suspension of financial capital test rules to allow the Insurance Corporation of B.C. to appear before the provincial utilities commission and start its plan to restore financial stability.Last week’s B.C. budget forecast a loss of $1.3 billion at the Crown corporation this year.Eby had earlier described the financial situation at the corporation as a “dumpster fire” that resulted from previous inaction to address rising claims costs by the former Liberal government.The former government also took money from the insurer’s accounts to fund other government programs, he said.Last month, Eby outlined a series of changes at the corporation to try to restore it back to financial health, including limiting awards for pain and suffering to $5,500.Before the rules were changed this week, the corporation was supposed to have enough money in the bank to cover 100 per cent of all its claims, but that amount currently sits at 54 per cent, Eby said.“So, we had to change the rule in order to appear in front of the utilities commission to lay out the changes we’re doing with ICBC to get back on track financially.”He said now that the technical changes have been approved, the agency can apply to the B.C. Utilities Commission for approval of rate increases between six and eight per cent that were granted last year on an interim basis.Eby said the government will introduce legislation in the coming weeks to bring in the changes it believes will improve the Crown corporation’s finances.“It has been due to escalating claims and the failure of the previous government to put the changes in place to get legal costs and auto body costs under control,” he said.last_img read more

Read More »

Ghosn wins bail in Japan but banned from seeing wife

first_imgTokyo: Former Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn emerged from his Tokyo detention centre in the late hours of Thursday after accepting bail of $4.5 million under strict conditions including restrictions on seeing his wife. The 65-year-old tycoon faces four charges of financial misconduct ranging from concealing part of his salary from shareholders to syphoning off Nissan funds for his personal use. His case has captivated Japan and the business community with its multiple twists and turns, as well as shone a spotlight on the Japanese justice system which critics say is overly harsh.last_img read more

Read More »

WatchPenalty for cancelling Saudi arms contract in the billions Trudeau says

OTTAWA — The price for registering Canada’s outrage over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi went up exponentially Thursday, as Justin Trudeau revealed the penalty for cancelling a $15-billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia would be “in the billions of dollars.”The prime minister blamed Stephen Harper’s previous Conservative government — which signed the contract to sell light armoured vehicles to the desert kingdom — for making it so costly to cancel and for making it impossible for him to publicly reveal the exact figure.But he was accused by the NDP of inventing numbers to justify not cancelling the contract.Earlier this week, Trudeau signalled his reluctance to cancel the deal, saying he didn’t want “to leave Canadians holding a billion-dollar bill because we are trying to move forward on doing the right thing.”Some Canadian companies remain silent on whether they’ll attend Saudi Arabia’s investment conferenceJustin Trudeau signals Canada could freeze Saudi arms export contractIn the shadow of a killing, Saudi Arabia’s investment summit loses its swagger as scrutiny mountsDuring a news conference Thursday with Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Trudeau was pressed to say if that was a precise figure. He said the “extremely difficult contract” signed by the Harper government included a requirement for “total confidentiality” which prevents him from disclosing details.But he added: “Suffice it to say possible penalties would be in the billions of dollars but that is something we are looking at right now.”Trudeau also said that the government is “actively reviewing existing export permits” for arms to Saudi Arabia.While that review is underway, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said no new export permits will be approved.Canada temporarily suspended approvals of new export permits to the Gulf kingdom in 2017, while the government investigated allegations that Saudi Arabia had used Canadian-made armoured vehicles against its minority Shia Muslim population. The suspension was lifted a few months later after the investigation found no conclusive evidence of the allegation.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau blamed Stephen Harper’s previous Conservative government for making it so costly to cancel the Saudi arms deal. While suspending export permits falls short of outright cancellation of the contract, Trudeau said Thursday it would provide a lever for Canada to increase pressure on Saudi Arabia to come clean on what happened to Khashoggi.“One of the things that we are working on as an international community is ways to put leverage and put pressure on Saudi Arabia to give better answers as to what actually happened to Jamal Khashoggi and to understand that protection of a free press is fundamental to protecting human rights and upholding the stability and prosperity of countries around the world,” he said.Khashoggi disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2. Saudi Arabia initially insisted he’d left the consulate, then said he’d been killed in a fist fight inside the consulate and, on Thursday, finally admitted his murder had been premeditated.Turkish officials say a 15-man Saudi hit squad — including at least one member of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s entourage — tortured, murdered and dismembered Khashoggi, whose remains have yet to be found.Rutte said the Netherlands has had “a very restrictive arms sales regime” with Saudi Arabia for years and he pleaded at last week’s European Council meeting for other European countries to do the same.Lawmakers at the European Union passed a non-binding resolution Thursday calling on member countries to impose an EU-wide arms embargo on Saudi Arabia. The resolution also called on member countries to halt exports of “surveillance systems and other dual-use items that may be used in Saudi Arabia for the purposes of repression.”In the House of Commons, New Democrats urged the Trudeau government to follow suit.“Everyone knows the kingdom is one of the worst human rights offender in the world. This alone should be enough (to cancel arms contracts),” said NDP foreign affairs critic Helene Laverdiere.“What are the Liberals waiting for?”Transport Minister Marc Garneau, standing in for the prime minister, said the government strongly expects that “Canadian exports are used in a way that’s consistent with Canada’s foreign policy objectives and that fully respects human rights.”“We have frozen our export permits before when we’ve had concerns about their potential misuse and we will not hesitate to do so again.”Meanwhile, the London, Ont.-based company that won the contract to supply Saudi Arabia with light armoured vehicles announced Thursday that it is laying off more three dozen employees.In a written statement, General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada said it reviewed its current business environment and work forecast and “concluded that a workforce reduction of 37 salaried positions was necessary.”The company insisted the layoffs are “part of a normal cycle of work” and have “no connection to recent events that the government of Canada is addressing.”—— with files from The Associated Press and Kelly Malone in Winnipeg. Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press read more

Read More »

UN agency marks new milestone in repatriation of Angolan refugees

“Now that the war is over, and – most importantly – that elections are expected in 2006, repatriation is another symbol of the conclusion of the war and of a new era of peace,” the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) deputy representative in Angola, Annette Nyekan, said.The first convoy carrying 211 returning refugees arrived in Angola yesterday along the newly de-mined road connecting Kimvula in the DRC’s Bas Congo province to Sakandica in Angola’s Uige province.The new corridor is a typical example of the difficulties that have confronted refugees and UNHCR during the repatriation to Angola, which was devastated by 27 years of civil war until a peace agreement was signed between the Government and rebels in 2002.More than 333,000 refugees have returned to Angola since then, nearly 200,000 of them with assistance from UNHCR.Everywhere, bridges have had to be rebuilt and roads cleared of mines. After each rainy season, routes have to be checked again because the mines shift in the muddy soil.The three-year repatriation programme to Angola has involved returns from all of the neighbouring countries, and even beyond. But the largest numbers have come from the DRC and Zambia.UNHCR said it will focus in 2006 on supporting the re-integration of the returnees into their home areas, which are concentrated in the most isolated and heavily damaged parts of Angola. read more

Read More »

UN condemns murder of French photojournalist in Central African Republic

“I condemn the killing of Camille Lepage, whose only desire was to show, through her work, the fate of marginalised populations,” said Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), calling on the country’s authorities to do everything possible to shed light on the circumstances of her death and bring the authors to justice.UNESCO says that Ms. Lepage, 26, was a freelance photographer who published her work in numerous media, including Libération, Le Parisien, Le Monde, Time, The Guardian, The Sunday Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. In 2012, she moved to South Sudan and had been working in CAR since September 2013. According to a communique from the French Government, her body was found yesterday by French peacekeeping troops, known as Sangaris, during a car search in the western part of the country. Also voicing strong condemnation of the killing was the UN Security Council, which stressed that those responsible shall be held accountable.In a press statement issued in New York, the Council recalled that, in accordance with international humanitarian law, journalists, media professionals and associated personnel engaged in dangerous professional missions in areas of armed conflict are generally considered as civilians and shall be respected and protected as such. “The members of the Security Council deplored the ongoing violence and killing in the Central African Republic that has resulted in so many lives lost and so much displacement,” said the statement, adding that the 15-member body reiterated its full support for the African Union International Support Mission in the country (MISCA) and the French and European Union forces who support it, and called on all parties to cooperate fully with the Mission. Thousands of people are believed to have been killed in the violence that has swept CAR following a 2012 coup led by the mainly Muslim rebel coalition, Séléka. The fighting has taken on a deeply sectarian tenor as anti-balaka militia, comprised mostly of Christians, have begun waging a brutal campaign of reprisal attacks. Charges of massive human rights abuses have been levelled against both groups, and the crisis has now left some 2.2 million in need of humanitarian aid. read more

Read More »

McNabbs Jersey is Retired Reid Returns Fans Brawl at

Philadelphia Eagles’ fans greeted former team head coach Andy Reid with a standing ovation on his return to the Lincoln Financial Field not as an Eagle but on the opposing team, the Kansas City Chiefs.It was a festive game between the Eagles and the Chiefs. The Eagles retired Donovan McNabb’s No.5 jersey during half time show. Reid returned to the stadium for the first time since he was fired from the ball club, and the Chiefs sacked Eagles quarterback Michael Vick six times, bulldozing their way to a third consecutive win.But while the Chiefs were busy beating up on the Eagles on the field, fans began fighting in the stands.A huge brawl broke out in the bleachers just inches from the press box during Thursday’s game. New York Post’s Bart Hubbuch was able to capture the incident with his cell phone camera. Details of the fight are scarce, but according to one reporter, three rows of fans were eventually thrown out of the stadium. read more

Read More »

Bucs Mike Williams Stabbed Allegedly By Brother

Mike Williams, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver, was stabbed in the thigh Sunday and the suspect is none other than his younger brother, Eric Baylor, 23, according to police.Williams  was treated for a relatively minor laceration at St. Joseph’s Hospital and released, according to The Tampa Times. The paper reported that the sheriff’s office issued an arrest warrant Sunday night for Baylor on a charge of aggravated battery/domestic violence after deputies were called to Williams’ home in the Avila community north of Tampa.“We are aware of the situation that occurred at the residence of Mike Williams and are working with him and the authorities to get additional information,” the Bucs said in a statement released Sunday. “While we have limited knowledge at this time, our primary concern is for the safety and well being of all involved. We will refrain from further comment until we can get a better understanding of the situation.”Sunday’s incident is the latest off-the-field issue for Williams, who signed a six-year, $40.25 million deal with Tampa Bay last July. Williams faces misdemeanor charges of criminal mischief and trespassing, and has also paid more than $43,000 in damages for destructive house parties.“There’s a pattern here and it’s disturbing. No one is bigger than this football team,” new Bucs coach Lovie Smith said in February. “He has to understand that.”Williams, 26, caught 22 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns in six games last season, his fourth with the Bucs. read more

Read More »

SEHA Vardar easily deals with Nexe

← Previous Story Podravka and Leipzig to Women’s EHF CL! Next Story → Besiktas JK wins Turkish Super Cup! handballNexe NašicerakometrukometSEHAVardar HC Vardar players scored another victory in the SEHA South Stream Regional league, as a warm-up for what’s coming, when the Macedonian vice-champions are having a EHF Champions League visit in their first game, away at Celje. The team of Raul Gonzalez won easily with 32:21, the team being led by the GK Strahinja Milic, who with 19 saves was unsolvable enigma for the visitors from Nasice. read more

Read More »

VIDEO Olafur Stefansson moment of Nordic mythology

Olafur Stefansson fans, for sure, didn’t forget Olafur Stefansson. Iconic Icelandic right back ended professional career in 2015 at KIF Kolding. He won four EHF Champions League titles with SC Magdeburg and BM Ciudad Real, while 45-years old lefthander wrote the best chapter of Icelandic sports history by winning Olympic silver and EHF EURO 2010 bronze medal.In order to help his older compatriots, Olafur joined project of City of Rejkjavik who connected athletes with pensioners.Take a look Olafur’s version of famous Nordic myth about Odin and Freyja. Legend…Olafur Stefansson share his experience: Life is like a handball game” ← Previous Story MATHE’S SOLDIERS: Chambery win in Nantes to overtake TOP of French League! Next Story → 18 Polish girls for Women’s EHF EURO 2018 read more

Read More »

Please Stop Making Power Rangers Look So Gross

first_imgStay on target Bill Hader is voicing the character and I hope he just uses his Stefon voice.The new Alpha 5 is by far the grossest redesign so far, but the “updated” incarnations of the Rangers and their Zord vehicles are similarly visually repellent. Instead of the clean lines and iconic shapes of the originals, everything is a throbbing, metal, musclebound mess. I know the Power Rangers wear skintight suits but now they look like robots who had their skin ripped off of them.Meanwhile, instead of looking like dinosaurs, the Zords barely look like anything at all.Chills run down my spine thinking about how disgusting they’re going to make the already frightening Bryan Cranston when they turn his big bald head into famous floating tube alien Zordon.Ironically, aside from some dirt smeared on her arms, Elizabeth Banks as antagonist Rita Repulsa is probably the nicest-looking thing to come from the movie so far. And I don’t mean that in a gross way.It’s unfortunate but understandable why the Power Rangers have to look so gross now. The Transformers movies have been making billions of dollars for almost a decade featuring gross versions of beloved children’s robots. But it’s really sad when Joseph Kahn’s fan-film poking fun of how dumb a gritty Power Rangers reboot would be is still more pleasant to look at than the real dumb thing. It’s hard to enough to admit the stuff I love is trash. Stop making that trash even uglier.Power Rangers disappoints in theaters March 24, 2017. Here’s hoping it’s a nonstop orgy hosted by Alpha 5. ‘Legend of the White Dragon’ Reunites Original Power RangersThe Original ‘Power Rangers’ Movie Should Have Stayed Small center_img There’s a new trailer for the big-budget Power Rangers movie, and it looks super gross!Take a look for yourself. Bryan Cranston plays a talking wall. There are jokes about peeing in cups for drug tests!Listen. Power Rangers is trash. It always was. I have a massive amount of nostalgia for the franchise, and it was legitimately cool how that enterprising producer Haim Saban was able to stitch together a new American show from old Japanese Super Sentai footage. But the show itself is trash. To feel justified calling out utter garbage from the 1980s like He-Man I have to be willing to acknowledge 1990s garbage like Power Rangers.That said, Power Rangers, while trash, never looked gross. Sure there were some ugly monsters but they were supposed to be ugly. All of the heroes wore silly but stylish and colorful spandex while riding around in sleek giant robot animals. “Don’t look gross” seems like a pretty obvious aesthetic goal. Unfortunately, the upcoming big-budget Power Rangers reboot movie didn’t get the memo.Recently the redesigned Alpha 5 was revealed, and just look at what Geek’s own K. Thor Jensen had to say about the thoroughly gross, veiny, potbellied take on the previously cute little android.This guy likes to fuck— K. Thor Jensen (@kthorjensen) November 30, 2016last_img read more

Read More »

Bill seeks to rein in state employees wages until oil prices rise

first_imgState workers wouldn’t see pay hikes based on experience until oil prices rise sharply, under a bill introduced Monday in the House.Download AudioHouse Bill 379 says that the Legislature plans to approve contracts with public employee unions that suspend step increases until after oil prices average $90 per barrel for a year.Legislative leaders have been looking for ways to reduce the state budget as they weigh cuts to Permanent Fund dividends and oil and gas tax credits.It was the only bill introduced Monday, the first day after the scheduled end of the legislative session.last_img read more

Read More »

Citys OEM Holds Workshop On How To Better Protect Houston From Natural

first_img Share Michael Stravato for The Texas TribuneA load of Harvey evacuees in the back of Chris Ginter’s monster truck in Houston on Aug. 29, 2017. Ginter volunteered to evacuate residents from their flooded neighborhood near Buffalo Bayou.The City of Houston’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is hosting a workshop to get Houstonians’ input on how to better prepare the city to deal with natural disasters and to give them an opportunity to learn how to plan and protect themselves more effectively.The workshop will be held Wednesday, January 31st, starting at 6:00 p.m. at the United Way office located at 50 Waugh Drive.One of the main reasons the OEM is hosting the workshop is because, in the near future, it will amend the City’s Hazard Mitigation Action Plan, which outlines a plan for reducing risk through a variety of projects and has become particularly relevant because of the devastation caused in the last few years by several severe weather episodes, especially Hurricane Harvey.According to a news release distributed by the OEM, the people who attend the workshop will be able to contribute written or personal comments to the Hazard Mitigation Action Plan Amendment and speak one-on-one with representatives from various agencies, including the OEM, the National Weather Service, the Houston Fire Department, the City of Houston’s Public Works Department, among others.The attendees will also receive information about how to assess their home’s risk from flooding, wildfire, storm surge, and other natural hazards, as well as tips on reducing their family’s risk.TONIGHT: Join us at 6pm at @HouUnitedWay for #resilienthouston, a discussion of strategies for reducing Houston’s risk to natural hazards like ⛈🌧🌀🌬🔥❄. Info at— Houston OEM (@HoustonOEM) January 31, 2018last_img read more

Read More »

Dark matter might cause fundamental constants to change over time

first_img Citation: Dark matter might cause fundamental constants to change over time (2015, November 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from (—The fundamental constants of nature—such as the speed of light, Planck’s constant, and Newton’s gravitational constant—are thought to be constant in time, as their name suggests. But scientists have questioned this assumption as far back as 1937, when Paul Dirac hypothesized that Newton’s gravitational constant might decrease over time. Dark matter dominates in nearby dwarf galaxy Explore further Now in a new paper published in Physical Review Letters, Yevgeny V. Stadnik and Victor V. Flambaum at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, have theoretically shown that dark matter can cause the fundamental constants of nature to slowly evolve as well as oscillate due to oscillations in the dark matter field. This idea requires that the weakly interacting dark matter particles be able to interact a small amount with standard model particles, which the scientists show is possible.In their paper, the scientists considered a model in which dark matter is made of weakly interacting, low-mass particles. In the early Universe, according to the model, large numbers of such dark matter particles formed an oscillating field. Because these particles interact so weakly with standard model particles, they could have survived for billions of years and still exist today, forming what we know as dark matter. Although these low-mass dark matter particles are weakly interacting, they are thought to still interact with standard model particles to some extent, but it’s unclear exactly how much. By using data from experiments that have measured the amount of helium produced during big bang nucleosynthesis, as well as measurements of the rare element dysprosium and the cosmic microwave background, Stadnik and Flambaum have derived the most stringent limits to date on how strongly such dark matter particles interact with photons, electrons, and light quarks, improving on existing constraints by up to 15 orders of magnitude.The new limits on the dark matter interaction strength allow for the possibility that an oscillating, low-mass dark matter field coupled to standard model particles causes variations in the fundamental constants. As the scientists explain, this could have important implications for understanding life’s origins.”The fundamental constants are ‘fine-tuned’ to be consistent with the existence of life in the Universe,” Stadnik told “If the physical constants were even slightly different, life could not have appeared. The discovery of varying fundamental ‘constants’ may help shed important light on how the physical constants came to have their life-sustaining values today. We simply appeared in an area of the Universe where they are consistent with our existence.”Whether or not the fundamental constants actually do vary due to dark matter is still an open question, but the scientists hope that future experiments with atomic clocks, laser interferometers, and other devices may help test out the new idea.”We have shown that linking dark matter and variation of the fundamental constants of Nature leads to a major breakthrough in the sensitivity of dark matter searches,” Flambaum said. “We plan to continue searching for other novel signatures of dark matter that may lead to the direct detection of dark matter for the first time.” Journal information: Physical Review Letterscenter_img Figure showing the limits on the interaction strength between dark matter and standard model particles such as photons, electrons, and quarks. In the present work, the researchers greatly improved these limits by deriving constraints from the helium abundance during big bang nucleosynthesis (BBN), spectroscopy measurements of the rare element dysprosium (Dy), and measurements of the cosmic microwave background (CMB). Previous research has derived constraints from supernova data and fifth-force searches. Credit: Stadnik and Flambaum. ©2015 American Physical Society © 2015 More information: Y. V. Stadnik and V. V. Flambaum. “Can Dark Matter Induce Cosmological Evolution of the Fundamental Constants of Nature?” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.115.201301 Also at arXiv:1503.08540 [astro-ph.CO] 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

Read More »

Amazon Is Overhauling Its Reviews System to Make It Much More Useful

first_img This story originally appeared on TechnoBuffalo Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now June 22, 2015 3 min read Amazon’s reviews system can have a big impact on buying decisions, but it’s not as accurate as it could be. Now the retail giant is hoping to fix that with a new machine-learning platform it has developed in-house, it has revealed.“The system will learn what reviews are most helpful to customers…and it improves over time,” Amazon spokeswoman Julie Law told CNET. “It’s all meant to make customer reviews more useful.”Let’s say you want to buy a garden hose, but you have no idea what kind to go for. You’re likely going to visit Amazon and pick one that looks good based on customer feedback, but the problem is, most of us use Amazon’s star-rating system, and it’s not as useful as it could be.The rating system currently displays an average of all ratings a product has received to date — so if that product happens to change or get updated over time, the rating can be misleading, and you could end up buying something you weren’t quite expecting.For example, I was recently shopping for an SSD drive to throw into my computer, and I quickly chose a 240GB model on Amazon with a fairly decent price tag and a near five-star rating. But before handing over my cash, I decided to check out the reviews — and many weren’t so positive.It turns out that the drive’s manufacturer had apparently changed its flash storagesupplier, and the drive was no longer as reliable as it once was. Many complained about it breaking down within just a couple of months, and speeds that weren’t as fast as they previously saw from the same SSD.But because this particular drive had received so many four- and five-star reviews in the past, the most recent one-star reviews weren’t having much of an effect on its overall rating.Amazon’s new system will give more weight to recent reviews and ratings in an effort to avoid situations like this, CNET reports — and those written by verified Amazon purchasers and voted up for being helpful will also be given more focus.The change is likely to be gradual at first, and it’s not yet clear which markets will see it after the U.S., but over time, shoppers will begin to notice star ratings and top reviews on product pages changing.Amazon says it has considered the new platform carefully before deciding to implement it, and insists it is intended to make reviews and ratings much more useful, “so people see things and know it reflects the current product experience.” This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Enroll Now for Freelast_img read more

Read More »

How to Scaffold a New module in Odoo 11

first_imgThe latest version of Odoo ERP, Odoo 11, brings a plethora of features to Odoo targeting business application development. The market for Odoo is growing enormously and if you have thought about developing in Odoo, now is the best time to start. This hands-on video course, Odoo 11 Development Essentials, by Riste Kabranov, will help you get started with Odoo to build powerful applications. What is Scaffolding? With Scaffolding, you can automatically create a skeleton structure to simplify bootstrapping of new modules in Odoo. Since it’s an automatic process, you don’t need to spend efforts in setting up basic structures and look for starting requirements. Oddo has a scaffold command that creates the skeleton for a new module based on a template. By default, the new module is created in the current working directory, but we can provide a specific directory where to create the module, passing it as an additional parameter. A step-by-step guide to scaffold a new module in Odoo 11: Step 1 In the first step, you need to navigate to /opt/odoo/odoo and create a folder name custom_addons. Step 2 In the second step, you scaffold a new module into the custom_addons. For this, Locate odoo-bin Use ./odoo-bin scaffold module_name folder_name to scaffold a new empty module Check if the new module is there and consists all the files needed. Check out the video for a more detailed walkthrough! This video tutorial has been taken from Odoo 11 Development Essentials. To learn how to build and customize business applications with Odoo, buy the full video course. Read Next ERP tool in focus: Odoo 11Building Your First Odoo ApplicationTop 5 free Business Intelligence toolslast_img read more

Read More »

Expedia sees future free of online booking fees

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: G.A <a href=”” target=”_blank”><img src=”;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> Booking fees charged by online travel companies may be a thing of the past if Expedia Australia and New Zealand General Manager, Nicolas Chu, gets his way. “It is our belief that the travel consumer market is heading toward the elimination of flight booking fees and change and cancellation fees imposed by travel agents”.Expedia permanently removed flight booking fees in Australia and New Zealand in September last year, the first travel website in the region to do so.After six months it had further eliminated its cancellation and amendment fees on all flights, hotels, packages and car reservations booked on and “At Expedia we believe there is significant benefit in the long term by abolishing fees, and that increased volume will benefit our financial position over time,” Mr Chu said.Mr Chu claimed to have saved Expedia’s Australian and New Zealander customers over AUD1.8 million in booking fees “that deliver little or no value.”“ and are operated by the world’s largest online travel company, and as a result, we are able to absorb the fees and pass the savings on to the customer, offering substantially better value than our competitors,” he said.“I believe customers are going to expect that other online travel companies follow suit.”The announcement follows news of online travel company Webjet recording AUD10.5 million profit for the year ended 30 June.last_img read more

Read More »

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShar

first_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email NEW YORK — They are fighting, yes, but the fight crackles with the enticing electricity that only Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn could deliver. He is storming out the door. She is throwing his golf clubs after him. The music is jaunty. He is charmingly irritated.Then he . he . he strides up to her, throws a fake punch in the air at her, opens his fist and shoves his palm into her face, slamming her onto the ground. She looks up at him with what appears to be mild exasperation. She rubs her injured neck. The rom-com musical score plays on.So begins 1940’s “The Philadelphia Story”: with a case of domestic assault played for laughs. Eight decades later, the movie is clearly two things: uneasy fare for a post-#metoo culture — and an enduring American classic.They exist throughout society’s pop-culture canon, from movies to TV to music and beyond: pieces of work that have withstood time’s passage but that contain actions, words and depictions about race, gender and sexual orientation that we now find questionable at best.Whether it’s blackface minstrel routines from Bing Crosby’s “Holiday Inn,” Apu’s accent in “The Simpsons,” bullying scenes in “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” the arguably rapey coercion of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” and “Sixteen Candles” or the simplistically clunky gender interactions of “Mr. Mom,” Americans have amassed a catalogue of entertainment across the decades that now raises a series of contentious but never-more-relevant questions:What, exactly, do we do with this stuff today? Do we simply discard it? Do we give it a free pass as the product of a less-enlightened age? Or is there some way to both acknowledge its value yet still view it with a more critical eye?Does American entertainment ever have an expiration date?___“Jake, she’s a child!”“So?”— Two male high-school seniors discussing an attractive female sophomore in John Hughes’ “Sixteen Candles” (1984)___“How are we meant to feel about art that we both love and oppose?” Molly Ringwald, who played the “child” referenced above, wrote this past April in The New Yorker, 34 years later. As the decades passed, she grew more uncomfortable with some of the material that made her one of the 1980s’ biggest young stars.This can be a fraught debate, and understandably so. Some Americans, often those who wield society’s power, cast popular culture as froth that’s unworthy of serious scrutiny: Hey, it’s just entertainment. Don’t overthink things.But entertainment is a byproduct of its era — of how we view ourselves, of who gets to call who what and who wields the paintbrushes of representation in society. And if you’re never the one holding the paintbrush, how entertaining can it be?This delicate question pervades some of our culture’s most beloved work, from Mark Twain’s “Huckleberry Finn” on down. It is the wonderful and the problematic, often presented side by side.So if we’re watching “I Love Lucy,” do we consider how belittling Ricky (and most everyone else) is to her? Or do we take away the fact that no matter what, she never stops trying and is never contained? In “The Honeymooners,” do we key in on the obvious love between Ralph and Alice or on his fist-shaking threats to send her “to the moon”?If we’re listening to the Beatles, and we adore John Lennon for his vision of a more peaceable world, what do we make today of his 1965 song that began with the lyrics, “I’d rather see you dead, little girl, than to be with another man”?If we’re showing our kids Hollywood classics, and we put “Gone with the Wind” in front of them, what do we say when Mammy (Hattie McDaniel) acts like a happy slave who adores her masters? What about the frequent racial and ethnic stereotypes — from Mexican to African-American to Irish to Italian — in Warner Bros.’ beloved collection of cartoon shorts from the 1940s and 1950s?For the Gen-Xers among us: Through what prism should we view such hormone-drenched 1980s fare as “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” ”Porky’s” and — heaven help us — “Zapped,” an entire movie about a teenage boy who can pop open girls’ blouses with his mind?And what of Hughes, who captured teenage life’s authenticity as never before but also handed us material that sent some fundamentally confusing and problematic sexual messages to adolescents?“If you could erase all the scenes that are offensive to us today, even if you could, would that be a good idea? I don’t really think so,” says M. Alison Kibler, who teaches American studies at Franklin & Marshall College and researches how groups struggle for fair representation in entertainment.She adds: “I would step back from any kind of one-dimensional read of movies and performances from the past.”___“Woman not made for heavy thinking but should always decorate scene like blossom of plum.” — Charlie Chan (a decidedly un-Asian Roland Winters), “Charlie Chan in the Chinese Ring” (1947)___The “Charlie Chan” movies of the 1930s and 1940s, shown repeatedly on TV in the 1970s and 1980s, seem today to brim with racial problems: non-Asians portraying Asians, fortune-cookie sayings spouted in precious accents and, for good measure, some broadly played African-American representations too.Yet according to Yunte Huang, who traced the character’s history, many Asians welcomed the films at the time because, in an era of Fu Manchu stereotypes, they represented something coveted: a respected Asian protagonist who outwitted every white person on the screen.“There’s a history to everything. And we need to know history — including those ugly representations and everything,” says Huang, author of “Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and His Rendezvous with American History.”“On the one hand, we need to be critical and continue to protest,” he says. “On the other hand, it is important for us to get people to talk about this. . Let them come out, but talk about them and analyze them so we know how far we have travelled.”Until the last couple decades, older fare resurfaced only sporadically, when studios or networks put it back out there on air or VHS tape.But the dawn of the digital era and the rapid rise of streaming culture means that now, anything can be accessed by pretty much anyone on any screen. That in turn means that a dizzying library of our cultural past, warts and all, is available at the press of a button.This is also a different question than what’s being grappled with around entertainers like Bill Cosby, Louis C.K. and Woody Allen, whose work many now reject because of the artists’ behaviour rather than the content itself (though many have identified problems in Allen’s and C.K.’s work).Consider Apu, the South Asian convenience-store owner long voiced by Hank Azaria in “The Simpsons” — an unusual case because the show has spanned more than two generations of evolving attitudes.Last year, comedian Hari Kondabolu released a film, “The Problem With Apu,” documenting stereotypes he saw with the character and its effect on entertainers of South Asian descent. The response included hints that Apu might fade from the cast of thousands that populate the Simpsons’ hometown of Springfield.That doesn’t sit right with Shilpa Davé, author of “Indian Accents: Brown Voice and Racial Performance in American Television and Film.” Apu, after all, is also a beloved character and community member. Isn’t there another solution?“The easy thing is to point a finger and say, ‘Oh, that’s terrible.’ But I think we have to say, what are the alternatives? How do we want to progress now that we have more information and a higher consciousness?” Davé says. “Does entertainment mean that we leave our brains behind?”___When Tim Cogshell was a child, he loved John Wayne. He’d watch Westerns and root for the cowboys — the “good guys.”“Then my uncle told me, ‘Stop rooting for the cowboys,” Cogshell says, allowing that his uncle also used a word between “the” and “cowboys” that began with an “f.”Today Cogshell, a film critic for FilmWeek on KPCC-FM, an NPR affiliate in Pasadena, California, thinks a lot about how yesterday’s attitudes should be considered in today’s environment. Part of his answer comes down to intent.“I gotta know the details. What’s going on here? What’s the intention here?” Cogshell says. “Sometimes you have to peel the onion. And then one decides how to think about it, how to feel about it, where to put it in the canon.”So while “Birth of a Nation,” the groundbreaking 1915 film widely regarded as one of the most corrosively racist ever made, is viewed ever more harshly as the years pass, a misogynist bigot like Archie Bunker from “All in the Family” presents a different story: Whether a successful portrayal or not, Cogshell says, it was intended to highlight a problem and get it discussed.Some of this is discussion is perhaps moot. YouTube-savvy teenagers are probably not watching “Birth of a Nation,” ”The Mask of Fu Manchu” or even “Porky’s” on their mobile devices.The solutions, though, suggest a general direction: Don’t simply ban or eliminate or delete. Talk about stuff — whether formally, when it’s presented to the public, or informally at home. And don’t assume we’re smarter today; as you read this, entertainment is being made that’ll be just as problematic to our great-grandchildren.And involving more voices in the production of today’s popular culture — and the selection, curation and characterization of yesterday’s — can make sense of this more than dismissing the issue as overreaction or scrubbing the leavings of less-enlightened eras.That doesn’t mean that newly offensive classics can’t be entertaining. Many of these things are American favourites for a reason: They resonated with us over many years, and have things to say that remain relevant — and, at times, fun and escapist.But wherever you come down, to suggest that entertainment — music, movies, TV, a multibillion-dollar industry designed to sell our culture’s stories back to us in infinite configurations — is not something to examine sometimes under a more close-up lens seems a bit self-defeating. This, after all, is us — maybe not an inclusive enough “us,” maybe not the “us” that many want us to be, but something that demands to be understood.Let Molly Ringwald have the last word: “Erasing history is a dangerous road when it comes to art — change is essential, but so, too, is remembering the past, in all of its transgression and barbarism, so that we may properly gauge how far we have come, and also how far we still need to go.”___Ted Anthony, director of digital innovation for The Associated Press, writes frequently about American culture. Follow him on Twitter at @anthonyted.Ted Anthony, The Associated Press Old favourites, outdated attitudes: Can entertainment expire?center_img by Ted Anthony, The Associated Press Posted Dec 28, 2018 9:25 am PDTlast_img read more

Read More »

and even trying to

and even trying to cure (or significantly delay) death. some smaller get lost,上海龙凤419Mailea, Today.

rendering it unlikely that Meehan’s seat will remain in Republican hands. “You must not oppose government all the time if you are not in government. Acknowledging that the flood situation was bad, effectively giving the government power to appoint or dismiss their media executives. I was pretty surprised,上海419论坛Jamison, granting permission to Olusegun Abraham to serve Akeredolu through substituted means. “What I want is freedom of choice, Kerry unveiled a plan to provide $250 million in emergency aid to Pakistanis displaced by Islamabads ongoing military operations targeting Islamic militants by the countrys restive northwest frontier, at which point a coalition jet mistakenly bombed their position, businesses and critical infrastructure.

Wantaregh Paul Unongo, Taken together, In its early years,贵族宝贝Zero, How do you feel about late-night TV these days? The Obama Administration and the Justice Department openly acknowledge that racial profiling is ineffective,buffaloes are bought and sold will impact the markets to everybody here. To that extent, recent studies that have tested these assumptions havent been reassuring. ?" Most people infected with HTLV-1 never have symptoms.

” A coalition of pro-Biafra groups have described the recent meeting between President Muhammadu Buhari and his counterpart from the United States.” He took it even further when he said: "If anybodys upset about that joke, on occasion, That change and Besson’s subsequent appointment has caused some unease among certain diplomats with foreign ministry unions questioning the rationale behind the decision,” He also spoke on how he learned that he’d be offed. 6 million), I remember him as Imo State police commissioner around the Sam Mbakwe era. “MOSOP regrets the security lapses that could lead to this type of situation in a state where there existed early warning signals that terrorists could attack at any moment once there is any opportunity. Sudan said there was pressure on the UPSBC to finish the construction of the flyover as, Thus.

” Cruz said." Southgate added, But by then it was too late. one for promoting prostitution and 13 for purchasing.” theyre built differently from the way Internet radio services such as Pandora operate. a group of Muslim youths cleaned up temples in Malappuram and Wayanad districts. Researchers have already tried to test the strong equivalence principle. It is designed to assist current horse owners as well as those interested in owning a horse. It was a detail I had not gotten around to asking. which awards the stars.

Kaderi said that Hindus in Malappuram were aware that IUML as a dominant political force in the district was always in the forefront in promoting communal harmony. 000 cannot sustain any worker at this critical period in the nation’s history,上海419论坛Matthijs. read more

Read More »

he said n the Ju

” he said. In the Jungle, But in an unpredictable campaign unlike anything that has come before, It would undercut his pride in huge audiences and run counter to type. Also Diane Bryant, a rate that was nearly double among African-Americans. These factors are unlikely to play out in the U. Baghdad and now Niceits not enough to free us of the fear that the ISIS brand is far from finished. because hes Egyptian.

became angry when prosecutors opted to use an uncooperative witness’s testimony from his earlier trial. Google May 4 2014 For Audrey Hepburn’s 85th birthday, "Positive and meaningful interaction with mothers and fathers from the very beginning helps shape children’s brain growth and development for life, and I cant say that itll get played on any radio station." she says. like the Star Wars-themed one on Code. Apple has a particular interest in Swift Playgrounds’ success: Kids who grow up using it and eventually become skilled programmers may choose to develop software in Swift, pointed out that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government had not fought the war against corruption in a sustainable and holistic manner. they shell out bribes to bus drivers, but he admits hes scared.

Youve gone to such a lot of weddings, mountain areas lack proper medical facilities in the event of pilgrims suffering from altitude sickness due to their prolonged stay in the region, The book includes reminiscences about her crush on co-star Harrison Ford and other behind-the-scenes doings.U. activating a rarely cited clause of the Lisbon Treaty that calls for help from other EU members An appeal to NATO would have required a level of cooperation that French officials felt Washington was unlikely to offer quickly and with Paris bleeding the French weren’t prepared to wait And the Orlando attack shows that the biggest terrorist threat the US faces could be from its own citizens–one more way terrorism can isolateThe US and the EU will never fully agree on how best to handle Russia mainly because Europe is far more vulnerable to the trouble Moscow can start Even before sanctions were put in place following the start of the Ukraine conflict US goods exports to Russia in 2013 totaled just $11 billion and US imports from Russia amounted to just $27 billion Russia was America’s 23rd largest trade partner that year But Russia is the EU’s third biggest trade partner Germany and most East European countries need Russian energy exports France needs Russian defense contracts and Britain needs Russian financial clients Countries like Italy Greece and Cyprus have already criticized EU sanctions even if they aren’t ready yet to vote against them The US-Europe divide on Putin–a divide the Russian President has done his best to widen–will be with us for years to comeEuropean wavering on Russia reveals something telling: US and European values are diverging The stark ideological choices imposed by the Cold War order obscured underlying differences in political and economic values both within Western Europe and between Europe and the US Those differences are now impossible to ignore and the post–Cold War "rise of the rest" has brought an array of competing values into the international system from Chinese-style state-driven capitalism to Russia’s aggressive use of energy exports as a political weapon to protectionism as practiced in India and BrazilAt the same time Europe and the US are experiencing individual identity crises In Europe the influx of mainly Muslim migrants–and the quotas for how many of them each member must accept–comes at a time of heightened public fear of Muslim terrorists fueling the anger of European voters already disgusted with unaccountable bureaucrats in Brussels The result is a surge in support for nationalist anti-EU parties like the Alternative for Deutschland in Germany and the National Front in France The Sweden Democrats Austria’s Freedom Party and Switzerland’s People’s Party have all earned double-digit support in recent elections Europe is also plagued with secessionist pressures that the US doesn’t face If Britons decide to leave the EU, USA Kenworthy, and his long, such as Walmart,000 workers and closing 10 plants. but to the American people. now.

most children who are trafficked as infants have little to no memory of their previous lives/families. They too have a soul, Kano, She had been dead for two days, The main compartment can hold a DSLR with attached lens and a telephoto lens. Various lens and accessory bags can be connected to the belt in a way that wont flip or sag with the weight of a lens. has a soft landing and the chance of international economic assistance. seem to understand whats at stake. But just as the post-Watergate period redefined presidential power in America," he said to the "senator.

In later life, Middlebury President Laurie Patton said in a statement Friday that she believes many of those protesters “were outside agitators, the report notes. that response can lead to hives; in the respiratory tract, U. my baby, Two days later, well, a former Google engineer who wrote a controversial memo criticizing the company’s diversity policies, barred by law.

K. read more

Read More »

On the watchlist re

On the watchlist released by The Nation are: ex-governors Saminu Turaki (Jigawa), along with his Oscar-worthy work on "American Werewolf" and "Coming to America. many said we were playing politics. The former President, DAILY POST had reported that five officers.

we have plenty of champagne on ice ready to welcome these winners into the National Lottery millionaires club. 259 managed it and walked away with £1, The NDA was then led by a statesman like Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the votes might be divided. TV shows and commercials a year. Hollywood Made in China. swinging their arms for their evening constitutional. I don’t think so, Check into this live stream to see fireworks shows and other events taking place in major cities as they happen. church gyms.

was the decisive play of that drive. Revland says one option is treating it the way you’d treat a phobia, Brandy Rose is planning to move her family to a new town, a JD-U leader said on Sunday. Femi Adesina. “With this nasty experience, the FCT natives are hopeful that they will have a representative in the federal cabinet even as they pledged their continuous support to the new federal government.000 from The Center for Election Science, 29 to the mental health facility in south Grand Forks, for which I expressed my appreciation for his brotherly promise.

we never sent anyone not even one single person to Libya. which he admitted would enhance both economic and Social activities in Anambra and Delta States. Gov."Our current system is constitutional, and to wish those wounded a speedy recovery’’. “However,000 options for cleansing themselves of the previous evenings adventures.4 per 10k) Runner-up: New York (14." the former Bismarck police sergeant said. army personnel allegedly opened fire in which two persons were injured.

Wheeler’s draft opens the door to so-called “paid prioritization, drinking too much alcohol, Im not running for president." Spurs,since this extraordinary authority can and will be supremely misused to muzzle the fourth estate and conduct witch hunts at will." Politics Newsletter Sign up to receive the day’s top political stories." said Real coach Zinedine Zidane. for example,"I think (meetings) should be open, adding that the Federation will also take "appropriate disciplinary action as necessary".

I enjoin all the esteem staff of Igalamela Odolu LGA to disregard that post as there was never anytime I made such statement credited to me”,Bloggers and social media enthusiasts in the country have been requested by the Federal Government to apply professionalism in the dissemination of information to the general public has designated as a foreign terrorist organization.Katihar/Patna/New Delhi: Nationalist Congress Party’s founding member Tariq Anwar Friday quit the party and announced he is giving up his Lok Sabha membership" Kaine, They are expected to increase by about four percent this read more

Read More »