Zimbabwe submits to popular pressure: foreign currencies now legal tender
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Zimbabwe submits to popular pressure: foreign currencies now legal tender

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Zimbabwe has decided to abandon its currency, the Zimbabwean dollar, in favour of other currencies.

Acting Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa announced today that Zimbabweans will be allowed to make transactions in other currencies along with the local currency. “In line with the prevailing practices by the general public, [the] government is therefore allowing the use of multiple foreign currencies for business transactions alongside the Zimbabwean dollar,” he said, adding that the Zimbabwean dollar will not be removed from circulation and would be used alongside other currencies.

This decision comes during the current period of hyperinflation, which has massively devalued the Zimbabwean dollar. Banknotes up to $100 trillion have been printed, despite the removal of ten zeroes from the currency last summer to try to make transactions easier. The official inflation rate, last updated in July 2008, was 231,000,000% a year, although independent estimates place the number as high as 6.5×10108, or 6.5 quindecillion novemdecillion, percent.

Up to now, only vendors with licenses were legally able to accept foreign currencies, although the practice was widespread — private businesses altogether refuse to accept the unstable Zimbabwean dollar.

Large sections of the workforce, including teachers and doctors, have gone on strike because hyperinflation rapidly renders their wages worthless. Representative groups said salaries, now measured in trillions of dollars, are insufficient to pay for even the bus fare to work.

Zimbabwe also faces other crises, including a cholera epidemic that has claimed the lives of over 3,000 people, according to statistics from the World Health Organisation.

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Rhode Island borrows $90 million from US for jobless claims
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Rhode Island borrows $90 million from US for jobless claims

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Rhode Island will receive US$90 million in funding from the United States federal government to support unemployment benefits in the state.

Rhode Island’s Department of Labor and Training stated on Wednesday that it requested the line of credit because the account utilized to provide funding to unemployed individuals in the state had decreased to only $2 million; enough to last only a few days.

Unemployment insurance customers will not experience any delays in receiving their weekly payments.

In a statement released by the Department, the agency said: “Unemployment insurance customers will not experience any delays in receiving their weekly payments.”

Unemployment in Rhode Island was 12.8 percent in August 2009 – the third-highest rate in the United States. During the first eight months of 2009, Rhode Island’s state unemployment insurance trust fund has provided over $300 million in unemployment benefit funding.

In addition to Rhode Island, 20 other states have outstanding balances on money they borrowed from the Federal Unemployment Account of the United States Department of Labor. Rhode Island has an outstanding balance of approximately $90.68 million due to the account. The loans are interest-free until December 2010.

World’s oldest seaborne passenger vessel on tour as floating library
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World’s oldest seaborne passenger vessel on tour as floating library

May 2, 2005

The Merchant Vessel (MV) Doulos, listed in the Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest active ocean-going passenger ship, has docked in the port of Muscat, Sultanate of Oman this week. The ship was built in 1914, two years after the Titanic, but unlike the more famous luxury liner, Doulos has over 90 years of safe sailing to her credit. This “Grand Old Lady of the Sea” has undergone several periods of rebuilding and expansion throughout the 20th century and sailed under three different names, before being purchased by a Christian missionary group, Operation Mobilisation (OM), in 1977 and converted for their use.

Doulos bills itself as “the world’s largest floating book fair”, and carries half a million books which represent about 6,000 distinct titles, which are donated and sold for modest fees to support the vessel’s operation. The books represent Christian literature and educational material in various languages. Sailing from port to port throughout Asia and Africa, the crew of the Doulos sometimes finds itself faced with local restrictions against the sale of Christian literature, which it handles by separating the sacred books from the secular with a canvas divider, and evangelizing the guards who are sent to control access to the banned books.

Most places visited by the Doulos and its sister ship Logos II (which travels North and South America) receive them with an enthusiastic welcome. “Most places we visit don’t have Borders or Barnes and Noble,” said Lane Powell, publications editor for OM. “In other countries literature is more highly valued and this can be the biggest thing in town,” Powell continued in his interview with ASSIST News Service. “People line up one to two miles in some parts of the world. We have 6,000 people coming on the Logos II in one day.”

The OM website claims that, since 1970, the two ships have together reached 30 million people in 140 countries, in 435 ports around the world. The crews themselves are also quite international in character, with volunteers from 50 different countries. Powell gives credit to their shared Christian background for their ability to get along with each other despite their differences. The names of their ships also have Christian meaning: doulos means “servant” and logos means “word”, as in holy scripture.

The ship recently sailed to Jordan, Lebanon, and Egypt before coming to the Gulf of Oman, and docking in its Sultan Qaboos port, where it was received in style by the Tourism Minister Rajiha bint Abdulameer bin Ali, one of three female ministers in the cabinet. Oman is the only country in the Gulf to have its own tourism ministry, created last year to encourage visitors to come partake in Omani life and culture.

Said bin Ali to the Daily Times, “We are absolutely delighted to have a roving library second to none, busy inculcating reading habits among people at a time when it matters most.”

Also speaking to the Daily Times, Murthadha Hassan Ali said, “The importance of such a visit can’t be over-emphasised in days when reading habits are waning and people are swarming restaurants as if we were born only to eat… Book remains your best companion, TV or no TV.” Ali described himself as a “compulsive book reader”, and wants someday to start a public library in the capital city of Muscat, which currently has none.

The 425 foot long (130m) library will weigh anchor and continue its missionary journey starting May 9, with plans to sail to Kenya, on Africa’s east coast.

US Supreme Court rules video games are protected speech
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US Supreme Court rules video games are protected speech

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

In a 7-2 decision handed down on Monday, the US Supreme Court struck down California’s violent video game law and ruled that video games are protected speech covered by the First Amendment. The California law banned the sale and rental of violent video games to minors.

The underlying question was whether the violence in video games has the ability to affect children more than violence in other media, such as books, movies, plays and other forms of entertainment.

Video games qualify for First Amendment protection. Like protected books, plays, and movies, they communicate ideas through familiar literary devices and features distinctive to the medium.

Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority, said that depictions of violence have never been regulated by the US government. Thus violent videos are not to fall under government control as does pornography but is to be accorded the same First Amendment protections as other forms of entertainment. The sale of violent video games is not to be criminalized and California’s attempt to do so was “unprecedented and mistaken.” Scalia noted, referring to fairy tales, that “the books we give children to read—or read to them when they are younger—contain no shortage of gore.”

[T]he books we give children to read—or read to them when they are younger—contain no shortage of gore.

The beginning of the decision states, “Video games qualify for First Amendment protection. Like protected books, plays, and movies, they communicate ideas through familiar literary devices and features distinctive to the medium. And ‘the basic principles of freedom of speech…do not vary’ with a new and different communication medium.”

“The most basic principle—that government lacks the power to restrict expression because of its message, ideas, subject matter, or content, Ashcroft v. American Civil Liberties Union, 535 U. S. 564, 573—is subject to a few limited exceptions for historically unprotected speech, such as obscenity, incitement, and fighting words. But a legislature cannot create new categories of unprotected speech simply by weighing the value of a particular category against its social costs and then punishing it if it fails the test.”

The justices were not convinced by the existing research that the interactive nature of video games pose a greater risk to society because of their interactive nature. None of the results of the existing research put before the court showed that violent games cause violent behavior. “Psychological studies purporting to show a connection between exposure to violent video games and harmful effects on children do not prove that such exposure causes minors to act aggressively. Any demonstrated effects are both small and indistinguishable from effects produced by other media. Since California has declined to restrict those other media, e.g., Saturday morning cartoons, its video-game regulation is wildly under-inclusive, raising serious doubts about whether the State is pursuing the interest it invokes or is instead disfavoring a particular speaker or viewpoint.”

According to Nadine Kaslow, professor and chief psychologist at Emory University Department of Psychology and Grady Hospital, the evidence regarding the effects of violent video games is mixed. While there is evidence to suggest that exposure of children to violence results in more aggressive and less pro-social behavior, some studies show there is no negative effect, she said. She point out that toy guns were popular and parents monitored whether toy guns were allowed in the home.

This ruling does not prevent private retailers from placing restrictions on their sale of video games. The video game industry currently has its own rating system, much like that used for movies, and educates retailers in using the rating system to prevent minors from buying mature-rated games. According to PC World the industry’s compliance is better than that of other entertainment industries. Further, parental controls have been added to game consoles.

The view of the Entertainment Software Association that a better strategy is the education of parents rather than court battles.

2008 COMPUTEX Taipei: Three awards, One target
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2008 COMPUTEX Taipei: Three awards, One target

Monday, June 23, 2008

2008 COMPUTEX Taipei, the largest trade fair since its inception in 1982, featured several seminars and forums, expansions on show spaces to TWTC Nangang, great transformations for theme pavilions, and WiMAX Taipei Expo, mainly promoted by Taipei Computer Association (TCA). Besides of ICT industry, “design” progressively became the critical factor for the future of the other industries. To promote innovative “Made In Taiwan” products, pavilions from “Best Choice of COMPUTEX”, “Taiwan Excellence Awards”, and newly-set “Design and Innovation (d & i) Award of COMPUTEX”, demonstrated the power of Taiwan’s designs in 2008 COMPUTEX Taipei.

New study claims Stonehenge was a place of healing
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New study claims Stonehenge was a place of healing

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Archaeologists Timothy Darvill of Bournemouth University and Geoff Wainwright, President of the Society of Antiquaries, claimed to have found evidence that Stonehenge was once a center of healing. In an excavation conducted at the site, a large number of human remains were found that display signs of physical injury or disease. Study of the teeth from the skeletons indicates that about half of them were from outside the area.

A large number of bluestone or spotted Preseli dolerite chips found during the excavation led the researchers to conclude the stones were venerated for their healing properties. It is believed that about 80 of such bluestone blocks were transported from the Preseli Hills in Pembrokeshire, Wales to the Salisbury plains. The inner circle of bluestones are the earliest stone structures found in this site. Later bluestones were encircled by the imposing sandstone monoliths of sarsen stones. “It could be that people were flaking off pieces of bluestone, in order to create little bits to take away… as lucky amulets,” said Professor Darvill.

Stonehenge would attract not only people who were unwell, but people who were capable of [healing] them.

Radiocarbon dating indicates that the original bluestone circle was built around 2300 BC. This date coincides with the burial of “Amesbury Archer“, whose tomb was discovered near Stonehenge. The skeleton of this man reveals that he had serious knee injury and tooth problems. Researchers therefore conclude that the Archer came to Stonehenge to be healed.

Dating of charcoal fragments revealed that the site was inhabited as early as 7200 BC by groups of hunter-gatherers. This is more than 3500 years earlier than previously known.

News briefs:April 23, 2010
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News briefs:April 23, 2010

 Correction — August 24, 2015 These briefs incorrectly describe BP as ‘British Petroleum’. In fact, such a company has not existed for many years as BP dropped this name when becoming a multinational company. The initials no longer stand for anything. 
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Chef who appeared on Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Kitchen Nightmares’ commits suicide
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Chef who appeared on Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Kitchen Nightmares’ commits suicide

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Joseph Cerniglia, a chef who had appeared on Gordon Ramsay’s television show Kitchen Nightmares, has commited suicide. Cerniglia was the owner of Italian restaurant Campania. He jumped off a bridge into the Hudson river on the New York–New Jersey border. At the time of filming in 2007, Cerniglia owed suppliers $80,000.

Officials reported that 39-year-old Cerniglia had jumped off of the George Washington Bridge into the Hudson. His death has officially been ruled as suicide. His body was retrieved from the river after reports of a man jumping off of the bridge.

Ramsay released a statement to the Press Association saying “I was fortunate to spend time with Joe during the first season of Kitchen Nightmares. Joe was a brilliant chef, and our thoughts go out to his family, friends and staff.”

Cerniglia told Ramsay about his personal debt when he came to the restaurant in 2007. He said “I am financially in trouble. The debt of the restaurant alone is overwhelming. My personal debt — wife, kids, mortgage — that’s a lot of debt”.

No injuries after Antarctica research station support plane crashes
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No injuries after Antarctica research station support plane crashes

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

A Basler BT-67, chartered from Canadian air carrier Kenn Borek Air for the National Science Foundation (NSF), a United States government agency, has crashed whilst attempting take-off during a support assignment in Antarctica. None of the ten people on board were injured, but the modified Douglas DC-3 was substantially damaged in the accident.

The accident occurred on the morning of December 20 local time, about 550 miles from McMurdo Station, a US-run Antarctic base. The aircraft was carrying a crew of four, and six researchers. The flight was part of the Polar Earth Observatory Network project, which is part-funded by the NSF. The project sets up GPS equipment and seismic sensors in various locations across Antarctica, in order to monitor changes in the ice sheets that cover the continent. It is thought that this will aid understanding of global warming.

Although the NSF refused to publicise any details of the crash, one anonymous passenger has come forward about the accident, releasing his account in the form of an online report. According to the passenger, one side of the plane failed to lift off, and the aircraft’s wing subsequently dug into the ice.

“My seat came unbolted from the floor with me still strapped into the seatbelt,” the passenger said. “When we finally came to a halt, we were all in big pile in the corner of the plane with all of the equipment. We got shaken up pretty bad, but there were no major injuries other than some minor cuts and bruises… The wings, props, and tail all got bent up pretty bad. The landing gear, skis, and hydraulic system all were ripped from the plane and strewn about the ice.”

Following the accident, all those on board spent about twenty hours before they were flown back to McMurdo Station on board two Twin Otter aircraft sent from the base on a rescue mission. A full investigation has been launched into the crash by the Department of the Interior‘s Aircraft Management Division (AMD), who have signed a memorandum of agreement with NSF to conduct any necessary investigations on their behalf. The AMD have subsequently contacted the United States National Transportation Safety Board, who will participate in conjunction with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada.

Why Hire Demolition, Grading, Excavation And Hauling Contractors?

Why Hire Demolition, Grading, Excavation and Hauling Contractors?

by

Businesslocallistings Tampa

All types of residential, commercial or civil engineering construction projects require demolition, excavation, grading and hauling jobs. To make sure that these tasks are executed properly you will need to hire professional demolition, excavation, grading and hauling contractors. Usually, you will also need to hire these contractors for their bob cat services since these are likewise required in demolition, excavation, grading and hauling jobs.

In previous generations, the use of the term bob cat services was only limited to references to services rendered by the various types of heavy duty machinery that was manufactured by the Bobcat Company. These included hydraulic equipment, compact excavators, compact tractors, skid steer loaders and compact utility vehicles, among others. These are all heavy duty equipment for demolition, excavation, grading and hauling in construction work. In more recent years, however, the term bob cat services has become more generic in application. It is now used in reference to all the different types of heavy duty machinery for demolition, excavation, grading and hauling in construction work no matter what the manufacturing company is.

You will have to hire demolition service contractors in order to bring down and get rid of any object on your work site that is not needed or wanted. It may be an obstruction or sometimes it could be a building that has been assessed as unsafe and therefore condemned for demolition. High tech hammers, shears and multiprocessors are used by demolition contractors in tearing down concrete and slicing through high strength steel beams. Even for swimming pool removal, you will need demolition service contractors.

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You will have to hire excavation service contractors in order to take out any object or material embedded in the ground. One example of excavation work is tree removal. All residential, commercial and civil engineering construction projects do site excavation as one of their required preliminary procedures. Excavating is necessary before site grading can be done. Excavation is also necessary for laying down a project s foundation. There are cases, as well where site excavation is done to analyze the soil beneath an area. The depth of an excavation depends on its rationale.

You will have to hire grading service contractors in order to make the ground level for any residential, commercial and civil engineering construction project. This is also done even for projects that are on an incline or on hilly terrain.

You will have to hire hauling service contractors in order to take care of debris removal. You will also have to hire their bob cat services for this. All demolition, excavation and grading tasks create rubble that is taken care of by hauling service contractors.

It is best to hire demolition, excavation, grading and hauling contractors for demolition, excavation and grading jobs so that you can be sure that the quality of work is consistent. The contractors will be accountable to you and you can go after them if the work is not up to par. Of course, it is your responsibility to ensure that you are well protected by a tight contract that specifies all their responsibilities and deliverables.

3-D Construction Enterprises

3837 Northdale Blvd., Suite 199

Tampa , Fl 33624

Phone 813 294 7936

Email tampademo@aol.com

Website: http://www.3-dconstructionenterprises.com

Article Source:

ArticleRich.com

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