Rainbow Messiah

first_imgRanjit Majundar visits Peter Tatchell, the man who arrested Mugabe I had no apprehensions about approaching the highly secure abode of the country’s best known human rights’ activist. He had shown a reassuring level of enthusiasm about speaking to a student newspaper and every time I had spoken with him I was struck by his politeness and easy charm – a far cry, it would seem, from the man the Daily Mail once called a ‘Homosexual Terrorist.’ But this derogatory title had been given to Tatchell twelve years before, at a time when he was the thorn in the side of political and religious bigots and all manner of hypocritical closet queens. His peaceful though direct approach, while inspiring to many, also proved particularly provocative to others. Despite his laudable aims, some felt that Tatchell’s tactics were too aggressive, and even those who shared his sexual preferences reflected at times that he did more harm than good for their cause. Yet attitudes towards Tatchell changed dramatically after his courageous citizen’s arrest of Robert Mugabe in Brussels in 2001, in which Tatchell suffered senseless beating at the hands of Mugabe’s bodyguards. His bravery rightly earned him the praise of a generation whose human rights had long been suppressed. When in March 2001 the Daily Mail declared Tatchell ‘Heroic…..an example to us all,’ it was clear how far attitudes had changed.Having left the Labour Party in 2004, Peter Tatchell joined the Greens. He is currently a prominent member of the Green Left, which he describes as ‘an inner grouping within the party which has a particular focus on social justice.’ From this platform, he hopes to defeat former Cabinet Minister Andrew Smith in Oxford East at the next General Election. According to Tatchell, Andrew Smith is not simply a high profile candidate parachuted into a potentially winnable seat in Oxford with no interest in local issues. Quite the reverse. Although the election could be up to three years away, Smith is already living in Oxford for half the week. Tatchell is keen to confront an opponent whose ideas he finds so disagreeable. Smith supported the Iraq War, ID Cards, Foundation Hospitals and student top-up fees. Labour won the seat with only a thousand votes to spare from the Liberal Democrats – could Tatchell split the vote and keep Smith in Parliament? ‘I might,’ Tatchell acknowledged, but he thinks not, summoning a scribbled graph to show me how he might capture the seat. That victory is even conceivable is testament to his heavyweight presence on the ticket. Since the Greens polled only 1800 votes in 2005, they would have no chance of winning Oxford East without Tatchell.We know what Tatchell contributes to the Greens, but what do they add to him? Surely the growing awareness of green issues within the three major parties has marginalised the Greens, reducing them to the level of a pressure group? Is this just a ‘Greenwash’? But Tatchell cites the adherence of the two main parties to nuclear power as an indication that their immersion in green issues is not authentic. The Greens, by contrast, are strongly opposed to nuclear power. ‘It will cost £50bn to decommission and dispose of the waste from existing nuclear power stations – Just think how that money could be better used.’ Tatchell argues that for the same cost, and within the same time frame, equivalent concentrated solar power stations could be built in North Africa. We then discuss the Green Party’s ambitions for a more ethical United Kingdom – what might it be like? ‘It’s absolutely obvious [that] we’ve got to do something to stop traffic pollution and in so doing we’re going to have healthier and happier people.’ How can this be effected? ‘Reduce car journeys, move to cleaner fuels and hybrid cars, and plant more trees along roads to absorb toxic emissions. Make walking safer and more pleasant by widening pavements – make cities look and feel beautiful.’ That’s the vision, but what about the policies? ‘Labour plans to waste over £70 billion on Trident, ID cards, road building and nuclear power stations. The Greens would invest this money in energy conservation, renewable power, affordable green housing, and cheaper, faster public transport.’ They also favour a more creative approach to taxation, where the focus is shifted from taxing employment and production, to taxing waste and consumption. Thus under the Greens, those guilty of ecological violations will pay and the ethical will prosper. Except if you’re wealthy – they propose to introduce a tax rate of 60% for all earnings over £100,000. According to Peter, ‘people aren’t going to mind.’ The policies of high taxation are reminiscent of the terrible times for Britain in the 1970s – how then are Tatchell’s policies any different? Tatchell claims that he wants to create a ‘socialism infused with a Green perspective and updated to the 21st Century.’ He wants public services ‘run by the public for the public. We all gain if we live in a more caring, equitable society.’ Likewise, he feels we should be less materialistic, less consumerist, less interested in celebrity. I admire Tatchell’s Utopian vision of society, but I am less than convinced that it is attainable in reality. Do people really want to be told that their lives are wrong? That their pleasures are worthless? I enquired how the Green Party could encourage better human stewardship of the world without recourse to apocalyptic language. ‘Climate change is the biggest threat to global security, peace, health and economic prosperity. But we mustn’t be disempowered by a sense of doom, gloom and helplessness. The Green Party is motivated by the optimism that we can take the necessary steps to avert climate disaster and ensure our future as a green and pleasant land.’ A positive note to end on. I wish him luck.last_img read more

Half of colleges fail to provide halal food, says ISoc

first_imgNearly half of undergraduate colleges fail to offer halal food in hall for Muslim students, according to new data released by the University’s Islamic Society (ISoc).14 of Oxford’s 30 undergraduate colleges (46.7%) – including Balliol, Hertford, and Merton – do not have any provision for halal food, the society claims.A further three colleges – Magdalen, St John’s, and Univ – only offer halal food at formal hall. The Islamic Society’s vice president Supti Akhtar told Cherwell: “Eating together with fellow students in Hall is a big part of the Oxford experience, and it’s a shame if anyone feels excluded from that. “So providing halal food is a simple – but important – way of creating an inclusive environment for Muslim students…it is perfectly feasible for any college to cater for halal.”Akhtar said that the Society is trying to work with bursars and catering staff to provide clarity as to what food is actually halal.“Sometimes colleges just don’t declare it,” she told Cherwell. “We have also found problems around certain colleges not knowing that alcohol is forbidden, and thus students are often not told when alcohol is used within desserts or main meals. “We hope to resolve these issues in an attempt to make college life that much more inclusive for all our members.”last_img read more

WALPOLE, ROSALIE “Rose” (nee: Giambrone)

first_img54, mother and wife, died on February 11 with her children and husband at her hospital bedside. A lifelong Bayonne resident, Rose is survived by her husband Robert Walpole, son Vincent Clappsy and his partner Tara, daughter Casey Singley and her husband Ryan, stepchildren Robert and Shanna, big brother Vincent Giambrone, sisters Lois Kiensicki and her husband Robert, and Veronica Pike, nephews Matthew and Joseph, nieces Lindsey and Leanne, and her pets Annie, Ramsey and Ratatouille. She was predeceased by her parents, Louis and Dorothy Giambrone. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Rose’s memory to Bayonne Feral Cat Foundation, PO BOX 4111, Bayonne, NJ 07002. Funeral arrangements by DZIKOWSKI, PIERCE AND LEVIS Funeral Home, 24 E. 19th St.last_img

Mayor Jay Gillian: Info on Post-Storm Cleanup

first_imgDear Friends,I’d like to thank everybody again for their cooperation during the last weekend’s flooding in Ocean City. I’d also like to recognize the hard work of our entire city team, including the Police, Fire and Public Works departments before, during and after the storm. Their dedication helped to keep everybody in town safe and to get the town back up and running quickly.The weekend forecast calls for sunny weather, and if you’ll be out cleaning up, please take any storm debris and bulk trash to the curb for pickup. The city has added trucks for additional pickups to assist everybody. For more information, visit our post-storm cleanup page.Property owners can get information on flood-relief assistance at a special workshop in Sea Isle City on Thursday (Feb. 4). Representatives of various state agencies will answer questions about what help is available. The workshop is from 11:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Thursday at the Sea Isle City Library at 4800 Central Avenue.If you have any questions about any aspect of the cleanup, don’t hesitate to call the city at 609-399-6111 and we’ll direct your call to get you the information you need.On Monday, our engineering consultant made a presentation at a Town Hall Meeting about the immense scope and potential cost of dredging our lagoons and bays. The current system of hauling dredged material away by truck is not sustainable over the long term. On Thursday, City Council approved the hiring of Tonio Burgos and Associates to help lobby state and federal regulators for relief on the many obstacles to creating an ongoing dredging program. The action is part of our efforts to explore every avenue to get the job done in a way that is responsible to taxpayers.Dredging is just one part of my ongoing commitment to maintaining every part of Ocean City from roads to beach to bay. Thank you in advance for your patience as we work to complete these many improvements. I’d like to remind everybody that all of our plans and presentations are available on our capital projects page. Please check back with this resource as we continue our work throughout the year.Warm regards,Jay A. GillianMayor The following is Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian’s weekly update to citizens posted on Friday, Jan. 29.last_img read more

Press release: Curfew and £13k penalties for illegal waste offender

first_imgA 64-year-old man from Derby has been sentenced to a four-month curfew and ordered to pay more than £13,000 after pleading guilty to operating a breakers yard without a permit.Tony Haywood of Waterford Drive, Chaddesden, admitted to illegally depolluting and dismantling end-of-life vehicles at a site on Shilo Way in Awsworth, Nottingham.He was sentenced at Derby Magistrates Court on Thursday 10 January to a four-month community order with a curfew between the hours of 7pm and 7am. He was also ordered to pay £4,897 compensation to the Environment Agency, £8,175.48 in costs and an £85 victim surcharge.The ‘depollution’ process involves stripping vehicles of the many hazardous components that have the potential to damage the environment, including oils, fuels, batteries, battery acid, coolants and anti-freeze.It is a process that requires an Environmental Permit to ensure it is carried out in a way that protects the environment and public health. But Tony Haywood didn’t have one.Enquiries into Tony Haywood’s activities began in June 2017, when he took over the running of the Shilo Way site from his son, Stuart Haywood, who was himself serving a 30-week custodial sentence for the same kind of illegal activities at the same location.The district judge imposed a Remediation Order against Stuart Haywood, requiring all waste to be removed from the Shilo Way site and for no additional waste to be brought there.Taking on the site, Stuart’s father Tony Haywood, began by removing vehicles in an effort to comply with the Remediation Order. But between November 2017 and January 2018, he turned to depolluting and dismantling them. This was despite him understanding his obligation to get an Environmental Permit for the work – and receiving both advice and warnings from the Environment Agency.During the hearing, Tony Haywood’s ill health and lack of any convictions since 2001 were raised in mitigation. And he insisted he was only trying to comply with the Remediation Order.Speaking after the case, the Environment Agency officer leading the investigation said: The Environment Agency’s role under the EPR ensures waste operations do not pollute the environment or pose a risk to human health. Notes: Businesses that handle waste are subject to strict regulation and require a permit to operate under the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016 (EPR). Offence: Between 20 November 2017 and 11 January 2018 Tony Haywood operated a regulated facility on land at Shilo Way, Awsworth, Nottingham, NG16 2BF which was not authorised by an environmental permit, namely a non-exempt waste operation involving the depollution and dismantling of end-of-life vehicles and the storage of waste, contrary to Regulation 12(1) and Regulation 38(1)(a) of the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016. Activities like this have the potential to harm the environment, blight communities and undermine legitimate businesses that do follow the rules. It’s our role to protect the environment for people and wildlife and we won’t hesitate to take action against those who put it at risk. In the Magistrates Court, the offence carries a maximum penalty of an unlimited fine and six months’ imprisonment. In the Crown Court, it carries a maximum penalty of an unlimited fine and five years’ imprisonment.last_img read more

Watch Bob Weir Perform “Mama Tried” In Tribute To Merle Haggard At The Ryman Auditorium

first_imgBack in September of 2016, the Grateful Dead‘s own Bob Weir came to Nashville for an unforgettable week. First, Weir sat in with Phish for the first time in sixteen years, joining the band for the majority of their second set in what can only be described as an instant-classic performance. Next, he and his band performed a stirring set at the Americana Music Awards, at which he was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. The ceremony took place at the famous Ryman Auditorium, which was the longtime home of the famous and influential Grand Ole Opry Country music radio program.As such, Weir made sure to pay proper tribute to one of the artists whose career was most associated with the Grand Ole Opry, Merle Haggard. Weir performed “Mama Tried”, a Haggard classic that also stands as one of the best covers in the Grateful Dead extended live catalog. Haggard passed away in April of this year, so this performance served as a touching moment, with Weir paid tribute to one of the artists who influenced him (and so many in the music world) tremendously. Weir’s new album, Blue Mountain, is a true storytellers-album, and he lets his country roots show in a way that connects traditional Country Music and Grateful Dead music under one big musical tent.See the video of Weir and his band performing Haggard’s “Mama Tried” below, courtesy of Austin City Limits, which will air ACL Presents: Americana Music Festival 2016 on PBS this Saturday, November 19th.last_img read more

Insights for high school students

first_imgThree Cambridge Rindge and Latin School students who interned in Harvard’s marine biology labs during the spring recently shared their semester-long projects with their teachers, Harvard mentors, and family members. As they related their experiences, they talked about the obstacles they had to overcome that gave them glimpses into the world of professional researchers.“All three of these students had a classic experience in the Girguis lab, one that all scientists must learn,” said Peter Girguis, a professor of organismic and evolutionary biology. “You never know what’s going to happen.”“Well, I guess that’s science,” said Rindge and Latin senior Andre Dempsey, who attended the program showcase along with fellow interns Caspian Harding and Ariela Schear, and their high school marine biology teacher, Paul McGuinness.The collaboration between Harvard and the high school is formally in its first year, but there are hopes to extend and expand the program.  “These students were the trailblazers, and I think the project was a resounding success,” said McGuinness.“Harvard has been laying the groundwork for this for years. We’ve been able to give students exposure to a research lab and allow them to experience the joy of discovery, innovation, and the challenges associated with it,” said Girguis. “Harvard has been continuing to lay the mechanisms for ways in which Cambridge high school students can gain real-world experience in research.”John Cisternino, Harding’s father, said that it’s been “really eye-opening as a parent to see how much — and how quickly — [Caspian] has fallen in love with marine biology. To see that he’s already discovered his passion for it in high-school … I really couldn’t ask for a better situation.”“His initial courses with Paul [McGuinness] and this experience with Pete [Girguis] allowed him to do high-level work on the front lines — not just passively sit back and receive information,” Cisternino continued.Harding, who presented “Not Your Average Worm,” which examined shipworm cultivation, said the experience taught him many things.  “I think the common perception is that you go in and simply do an experiment. What I didn’t anticipate was the entire process as a whole, the process leading up to the actual experiment, the research, the planning. It changed my perceptions about what goes on in marine biology,” he said.Dempsey, who plans to attend Harvard in the fall, examined extracellular electron transfer (EET), where proteins are used to reduce electron receptors, as well as the use of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) in wastewater treatment.  Schear presented a project on biological iron oxidation in hydrothermal vents.The students thanked their Harvard mentors, Girguis, and McGuinness, of whom Shear said, “I would never have been interested in marine science in the first place if it weren’t for him.”The program is one of many at Harvard that engage local students.  To learn more about the University’s partnerships with local schools, visit Harvard Community Connections.last_img read more

Developing micron-sized magnetic resonance

first_img Laser precision to help find new Earths Harvard researchers trace neural activity by using quantum sensors A senior physicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and a member of the physics department faculty, Walsworth, along with postdoctoral fellows David Glenn and Dominik Bucher, developed a system that uses nitrogen-vacancy centers (atomic-scale impurities in diamonds) to read the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) signals produced by samples as small as a single cell. And they did it on a shoestring budget using an old, donated electromagnet.The system will enable researchers to peer into previously unseen biological processes as well as the chemical properties of materials, and could help open the door to answers to a host of new questions in fields ranging from condensed-matter physics to chemistry to neurobiology. The work is described in a paper recently published in Nature.“This gives us for the first time a tool for conducting NMR on samples that are similar to the volume of a single cell, while still maintaining high spectral resolution,” Walsworth said. “There are two major challenges we address with this work. There’s the spatial size, or the volume of the samples, and the other is the spectral resolution. To do useful NMR spectroscopy at these small scales, you need to have both.”The difficulty in achieving both, Walsworth said, is partly related to the way NMR operates.Discovered at Harvard in the 1940s, NMR works by exciting the atoms in a sample by using powerful magnetic fields and measuring the radio frequencies they emit. Since each molecule emits specific frequencies, chemists and physicists have learned to read those radio spectra to learn everything from the material properties of various molecules to how proteins are folded.,In conventional systems, those signals are measured using wire coils similar to radio antennas. For smaller samples, however, the signals are simply too weak to detect, so researchers — including Walsworth and physics Professor Mikhail Lukin — more than a decade ago began to explore using nitrogen-vacancy (NV) centers to pick them up.“One of the very first ideas we had for NV centers was to use them for small-volume NMR, down to the level of single atoms or molecules,” Walsworth said. “We had this vision 10 or 12 years ago, and it’s taken many years to improve the technology to get to this point.”From their first nanoscale detection of an NMR signal in 2013, Walsworth said, Harvard scientists refined the NV technology, and in 2014 were able to detect a single proton. By 2016 they had used NV to capture the NMR signal produced by a single protein. Although they could detect signals from tiny samples, the NV centers were far from ideal.“When we detected single proteins, it was with NMR spectral peaks that were 10 kilohertz wide in frequency,” Walsworth said. “But the separation between frequencies in NMR can be as small as a few hertz. So we were able to detect a protein, but all the chemical detail in the spectrum was washed out.”Obtaining that detail from nanoscale samples, he said, remains a challenge because quantum mechanical fluctuations that would be unimportant in larger samples remain dominant at tiny scales, and molecules in solution diffuse away from the sensor, resulting in lower resolution.“So there are intrinsic problems with samples at the nanoscale, but you immediately solve those problems if you back up to the micron scale,” Walsworth said. “That’s still the scale of individual cells, which is much smaller than anything you can do with conventional NMR systems, and is still of great interest to chemists and biologists.”Performing NV NMR experiments with micron-scale samples required a large magnet that was beyond the lab’s budget. So Walsworth and colleagues were donated a 1965 electromagnet from Columbia University, which was arranged with the help of Roger Fu, assistant professor of Earth and planetary sciences. But that still left Walsworth and colleagues with the challenge of working around the resolution problems inherent in using NV centers.,“One of those challenges is that the spins of the NV center, which are what do the detecting, only stay coherent for about a millisecond,” he said. “Three years ago, we had an idea to get around that limit using a technique we call synchronized readout.”Normally, Walsworth said, scientists would conduct a series of independent NMR measurements, then average them together to produce a final measurement. Walsworth and colleagues, however, developed a technique to take repeated measurements triggered by a clock that was synchronized to the NMR signal. By stringing those measurements together, they were able to measure signals with far higher resolution than before.The team then tested the system against three types of molecules — trimethyl phosphate, xylene, and ethyl formate — to show it was capable not only of detecting NMR signals, but of achieving spectral resolutions down to about one hertz, sufficient to observe key chemical signatures at the micron scale for the first time.“We were able to show that the system works on these molecules, which were the simplest spectra we could find and still call them complex,” Walsworth said. “This is exciting … We’ve solved a technical problem, but we still have more work to do before applying this to scientific problems.”Harvard’s Office of Technology Development has protected the intellectual property relating to this project and is exploring commercialization opportunities.Going forward, Walsworth said he plans to continue exploring ways to boost the signal from micron-scale samples with a goal of making the system both faster — the tests described in the study took as long as 10 hours to obtain data — and more applicable to living samples.Researchers also need to focus on improving the sensitivity of the NV centers, he said, so they can detect faint signals produced samples in weak concentrations.“We need to increase the sensitivity by several orders of magnitude to do everything we want to do,” he said. “Making these systems work on this tiny scale is a grand challenge now in the field.”This research was supported with funding from the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, the U.S. Army Research Office, the German Research Foundation, and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. Relatedcenter_img Diamonds are a lab’s best friend It’s not often that you see 50-year-old equipment in a modern physics laboratory, let alone find it at the center of cutting-edge research. But then, most such labs aren’t run by Ronald Walsworth.last_img read more

A Channel Changer – Chris Sullivan named a CRN Channel Chief

first_imgA familiar face can be found on this year’s list of the 2015 CRN Channel Chiefs. CRN’s list, which represents the most powerful leaders in the IT channel, includes VCE’s very own Chris Sullivan for the second year in a row. Chris also was named one of CRN’s 50 Most Influential channel chiefs.“Click to Tweet: Congratulations to VCE’s Chris Sullivan for being a 2015 @CRN Channel Chief! https://www.delltechnologies.com/a-channel-changer-chris-sullivan-named-a-crn-channel-chief/ShareThe honor is well deserved, as Chris continued to evolve VCE’s partnering strategy and led the team to a number of milestones in 2014. This year, VCE focused its investments on increasing engagement and deepening relationships with partners, which has been met with great success through the VCE Partner Program.With the introduction of VCE Specializations and the VCE Certified Professional Program, VCE has armed partners with enhanced capabilities, tools and skills to sell VCE converged infrastructure.  The response has been tremendous: 60 partners have completed more than 140 specializations, and more than 5,000 IT professionals became VCE certified. This success has even driven VCE to create additional specializations for new service and solution categories.In addition, along with EMC and Cisco, VCE introduced the Cloud Infrastructure Solutions Accelerator, which has encouraged partners with new benefits and incentives. VCE also expanded its technology partnering initiatives with two new certification programs: VCE Vision Ready for partners integrating third-party software with VCE Vision Intelligent Operations, and VCE Validation Ready for enabling partners to test and validate software integrations with VCE converged infrastructure on a remote test bed.During the last 12 months, there was a 56 percent increase in partner-driven sales, including a record number of new customer acquisitions. VCE is committed to continuing this momentum through 2015 by matching technology innovation with channel innovation, and partners will see VCE continue to make selling VCE converged infrastructure solutions as profitable as possible for partners.This award is an honor for Chris and for VCE, but it is equally so for VCE partners, whose input and feedback are crucial to VCE’s success. We are incredibly appreciative of the work and effort our partners have made in growing the converged infrastructure market, and are constantly looking for ways to give back. In fact, stay tuned; VCE will soon announce the inaugural winners of the new VCE Global Partner Awards program, highlighting those partners that have committed to moving VCE and converged infrastructure forward.Here’s to a successful 2015!last_img read more

Jennifer DiNoia & Michael Campayno Begin Performances in Wicked

first_img from $95.00 Jennifer DiNoia in ‘Wicked'(Photo: Matt Crockett) Wicked View Comments Michael Campayno(Photo: Susan Shacter) Rejoicify! Jennifer DiNoia and Michael Campayno will begin performances in Broadway’s Wicked on August 1. The pair step in for Rachel Tucker as Elphaba and Jonah Platt as Fiyero, respectively, in the long-running tuner, which is playing at the Gershwin Theatre.DiNoia has performed the role of Elphaba in seven companies across four countries, more than any other actress in the show’s history (Broadway, Chicago, both North American National Tours, London, Korea and Australia). She was also a part of the original company of We Will Rock You in Las Vegas and the first National Tour of Mamma Mia! DiNoia’s voice can be heard on Wise Mom’s ESL book series and the Killer Queen album on Hollywood Records.Campayno is making his Broadway debut. He appeared as Rolf in NBC’s The Sound of Music Live!; regional credits include Carousel, Side by Side by Sondheim, Next to Normal and All Shook Up.The current cast also includes Carrie St. Louis as Glinda, Tony winner Judy Kaye as Madame Morrible, Peter Scolari as the Wizard, Dawn E. Cantwell as Nessarose, Michael Genet as Dr. Dillamond and Zachary Noah Piser as Boq. Related Showslast_img read more