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Haines transgender teen breaks barriers at state track meet

By on August 24, 2021

first_imgArts & Culture | Education | Southeast | SportsHaines transgender teen breaks barriers at state track meetMay 31, 2016 by Emily Files, KHNS Share:Nattaphon “Ice” Wangyot. (Photo by Emily Files/KHNS)A Haines teenager was likely the first transgender student to compete at a statewide high school athletic competition. Nattaphon Wangyot, 18, was born male but has identified as female since she was about 5 years old. Her participation in last weekend’s track meet in Anchorage drew a lot of attention, both positive and negative.Wangyot goes by the nickname “Ice.” Her mother, Tukta Panyawong, says the nickname comes from when she was pregnant with Ice, back in Thailand, and she used to chew on ice cubes.Panyawong says the nickname fits, especially in the aftermath of the track meet. She says her daughter has been cool under pressure.“If some people say bad to you and you do bad to them, it’s not going to end easy,” Ice said. “So if they say bad to you, just smile at them and let it go.”There’s a lot Ice has to let go. She’s been reading comments from news stories about the track competition. Some are supportive and positive, but Ice says others are “hateful.” But, she says, the hateful comments make her stronger.“Some hateful people make me stronger and stronger. So I want to say ‘thank you’ for everybody.”It isn’t just online commentators who have a problem with Ice competing against other girls. On Friday, the conservative Christian group Alaska Family Action held a news conference.“It is not fair and it is not right for our female athletes, and we have a responsibility to protect our girls,” said Stephanie Leigh Golmon Williams, as reported by KTVA.The group said male-to-female transgender students have an advantage over biologically female athletes. Ice disagrees. She says she takes medication that suppresses male hormones and increases female hormones.Alaska Family Action was protesting the Alaska School Activities Association’s recently adopted policy on transgender athletes. The policy lets local schools decide whether transgender students can compete according to the gender they identify with.“The bigger gist of how this policy was developed is ASAA feels that schools are in the best position of dealing with individual students and know which individual students consistently identify with a different gender and can apply that better than we can, thousands of miles away from the actual student,” said ASAA director Billy Strickland.“Yeah, we’re not gonna discriminate based on gender identity. That’s the just the long and the short of it,” said Haines School District Interim Superintendent Rich Carlson.Ice moved to Haines from Thailand in 2014. But she didn’t start participating in sports until this year, her senior year. That kicked the district into action. The school board added gender identity to its non-discrimination policy and it updated administrative guidelines. Now the district’s stance is that transgender students can compete in sports according to the gender they consistently identify with.KHNS: “The Haines School District is part of Alaska history now.”Carlson: “We are. We are. I don’t think we ever set out to be that, but we are. And I feel pretty good about how we handled this.”Carlson was expecting some push-back to Ice competing at the state track meet. But when he heard about the news conference protesting the transgender policy, Carlson got on a plane to Anchorage.“I wanted to be there, frankly, to protect Ice,” he said.Ice says in all her races, her coaches tell her to ignore everything and just focus on running.“You should focus on the track, what you gonna do right now. Ignore how I’m hurt, how in pain. So I should focus on the running.”Now, she’s trying to ignore the negative reactions to her involvement in the track meet and focus on the support she’s gotten. And she wants to share that message with people in similar situations.“Just to be yourself. It’s your life. Nobody can control that. We have freedom. Everybody can talk everything bad to you, but just ignore it. Sometimes it’s so hard to do that, but it’s gonna be cool and really good in the future of your life.”Ice ended up placing in both the events she competed in. She won third place in the small schools’ women’s 200-meter sprint, and fifth place in the 100-meter race.Share this story:last_img read more

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Update: Troopers identify 2 Juneau men in plane crash near Haines

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first_imgOutdoors | Public Safety | Search & Rescue | Southeast | TransportationUpdate: Troopers identify 2 Juneau men in plane crash near HainesMay 27, 2017 by Quinton Chandler, KTOO Share:(Creative Commons photo by Matt’ Johnson)Update | 11:50 a.m. SundayAlaska State Troopers released the names for two of the three people on board a plane that crashed southwest of Haines Saturday morning.David Kunat, a 29-year-old Juneau pilot, and an adult male passenger from California both died at the crash site. Troopers said the other passenger, 31-year-old Chan Valentine from Juneau, survived the crash and was transported to Bartlett Regional Hospital.Authorities notified Kunat’s next of kin, but Saturday night they were still trying to locate next of kin for the passenger from California.Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board’s Alaska office, said earlier that an NTSB investigator would visit the crash site Sunday morning.Original Story | 8:13 p.m. SaturdayTwo people died in a plane crash about 9 miles southwest of Haines near Glacier Point late Saturday morning. One person is critically injured, said Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board’s Alaska office in Anchorage.“Witnesses reported a twin engine airplane taking off from a site. …  It crashed in an area of tidal flats or tidal beach in shallow water and unfortunately, two people (were) deceased at the scene,” Johnson said.He said emergency responders removed the injured passenger from the wreck and flew them to Juneau by helicopter. He does not know the identities of the passengers and he doesn’t know what caused the crash. He also didn’t say whether it was a commercial or private flight.He said an NTSB investigator will ride a helicopter to the crash site Sunday morning alongside Alaska State Troopers and a representative from the Federal Aviation Administration.“Once our investigator gets boots on the ground down there, those are the types of details as far as weather conditions, wind conditions,” Johnson explained. “Ultimately (we’ll) be able to actually interview the witnesses that actually saw this, that’s where we’re going to get a lot of the information.”Johnson said they are “blessed” to have witnesses to the crash. He said witnesses can help investigators determine the cause of a crash in the same way witnesses are helpful when investigating car accidents.The NTSB also reported there was a plane crash 30 miles southeast of Fairbanks Saturday.Share this story:last_img read more

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Whether it’s Trump or Clinton, biotech is in for ‘a moment of change’

By on June 23, 2021

first_img By Damian Garde Oct. 7, 2016 Reprints About the Author Reprints Evan Vucci/AP This November, the biotech industry faces an awkward decision: Donald Trump, whose policy stances have proven unpredictable; or Hillary Clinton, who can scythe drug company stock prices with a single tweet.But both candidates agree on one thing: Drugs are too expensive. So whatever the outcome, biotech is preparing for more scrutiny on how it makes its money.“I actually don’t think it matters who gets elected. Pricing is in the crosshairs,” Mason Tenaglia, vice president at health data company QuintilesIMS, said at a STAT panel discussion Thursday at Biotech Week Boston. “The biggest thing that’s going to happen is there will be more transparency.”advertisement Related: As it stands, the true cost of therapies remains somewhat inscrutable to the public. Drug makers set a list price, but a convoluted process of negotiations with insurers, rebates to benefits managers, and deals with wholesalers obscure the total cost.And there’s widespread public support for changing that. About 8 in 10 Americans agree that drugs are too expensive, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation survey released last month, and roughly 86 percent believe pharmaceutical companies should be required to disclose more information about how prices are set.advertisement Clinton seeks federal panel to determine if drug price hikes are justified Damian Garde Leave this field empty if you’re human: Privacy Policy [email protected] Donald Trump says Medicare should negotiate drug prices PoliticsWhether it’s Trump or Clinton, biotech is in for ‘a moment of change’ Please enter a valid email address. National Biotech Reporter Damian covers biotech, is a co-writer of The Readout newsletter, and a co-host of “The Readout LOUD” podcast. Clinton and the political committees supporting her candidacy have accepted more than $13 million from donors in the pharmaceutical and health products industries, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Trump and the committees supporting him have taken orders of magnitude less — just $110,000, according to the center, which last updated the data in late September.No matter who is elected, Meeker said, Congress seems likely to seize on the issue of pricing transparency.And thus for biotech, preparing for 2017 is not a matter of picking between Trump and Clinton. “It’s a recognition that we are in a moment of change,” Meeker said. The fear among drug makers is that the next administration will constrain pricing in a way that makes it difficult to get a return on research investments. The United States is home to “the most robust biopharmaceutical industry in the world,” said Dr. David Meeker, head of Sanofi Genzyme. He said the industry depends on a model in which drug companies are rewarded for taking scientific risks.“You have to ask, what is the net goal of transparency?” Meeker said. “Is it to allow a more competitive environment? Is it to allow better decision-making? Or is it to ultimately provide information that will lead to price control? I think that’s the slippery slope that we need to be extremely cognizant of.”Trump has disclosed few specifics on how he would rein in drug pricing, but he has endorsed the idea of letting Medicare negotiate with manufacturers on its own. As recently as September, he promoted the idea of allowing patients to import drugs from nations where costs are lower, but that proposal has since disappeared from his website’s section on health policy.Clinton’s plans are much more detailed and include capping out-of-pocket spending at $250 a month, allowing Medicare to negotiate with manufacturers, and penalizing companies that raise the prices of old medications.But whether she would be able to actualize those goals as president remains in doubt. The Affordable Care Act has endured a series of setbacks in recent months, with insurers planning to pull out of the law’s marketplaces and seeking higher premiums. Rescuing the law would require Clinton to marshal significant resources, and that effort may come at the cost of policy changes aimed more squarely at pharma.“The question for her, honestly, will be: Where does she choose to devote her energy and political capital?” said Kathleen Weldon Tregoning, senior vice president of corporate affairs at Biogen. @damiangarde Related: NewslettersSign up for The Readout Your daily guide to what’s happening in biotech. Tags Donald Trumpdrug pricesHillary Clintonpolicylast_img read more

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Two men accused of stealing Sesame Street costume

By on June 21, 2021

first_imgKey West proposes fine for feeding feral chickens January 22, 2021 Advertisement“We were just having a rough time and were trying to cheer ourselfs (sic) up.“We had a great time with Mr Bird. He’s a great guy and no harm came to our friend. Sorry to be such a big birden (sic).“Sincerely, the Big Bird Bandits.” RELATEDTOPICS Two men aged 26 and 22 were on Friday charged with theft and being unlawfully on-premises, police said. The men have been granted bail and will appear at Adelaide Magistrates Court on 30 June, CNN reports.The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved. AdvertisementTags: Sesame Streetweird February 8, 2021 AdvertisementDC Young Fly knocks out heckler (video) – Rolling OutRead more6 comments’Mortal Kombat’ Exceeded Expectations Says WarnerMedia ExecutiveRead more2 commentsDo You Remember Bob’s Big Boy?Read more1 commentsKISS Front Man Paul Stanley Reveals This Is The End Of KISS As A Touring Band, For RealRead more1 comments Advertisement Massachusetts man swallows AirPod while sleeping, doesn’t realize it February 5, 2021 Steer-iously? 1,600-pound cow on the loose in Rhode Island’s capital Advertisement Police searching for the “Big Bird Bandits” who allegedly stole a “Sesame Street” costume from an Australian circus have arrested and charged two men.The yellow Big Bird costume — valued at tens of thousands of dollars, according to CNN affiliate 7 News — disappeared earlier from a circus area on Bonython Park, Adelaide, this week, but was returned early on Wednesday morning.The “Sesame Street” costume was dumped back at the circus by an electricity box, with an apology note in the beak, South Australia Police said.“We are so sorry!!! We had no idea what we were doing, or what our actions would cause” the note read. AdvertisementRecommended ArticlesBrie Larson Reportedly Replacing Robert Downey Jr. As The Face Of The MCURead more81 commentsGal Gadot Reportedly Being Recast As Wonder Woman For The FlashRead more29 commentslast_img read more

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DOJ: Fort Myers cocaine trafficker to spend 11 years in prison

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first_imgAdvertisement Thief scoops up tip jar at Fort Myers ice cream shop June 16, 2021 RELATEDTOPICS FMPD surrounds home after shooting June 12, 2021 Man killed during shooting at Central Avenue June 12, 2021 AdvertisementDC Young Fly knocks out heckler (video) – Rolling OutRead more6 comments’Mortal Kombat’ Exceeded Expectations Says WarnerMedia ExecutiveRead more2 commentsDo You Remember Bob’s Big Boy?Read more1 commentsKISS Front Man Paul Stanley Reveals This Is The End Of KISS As A Touring Band, For RealRead more1 comments Advertisementcenter_img AdvertisementTags: Cocainedrug traffickingFort Myers FORT MYERS, Fla. — A 36-year-old Fort Myers man who was planning on selling more than 500 grams of cocaine was sentenced to 11 years in federal prison, officials said.Edgar Vazquez was driving on Colonial Boulevard in September 2018 when he was pulled over by a deputy with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for a traffic violation, according to a release from the Florida Department of Justice.PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Fort Myers man found guilty of trafficking more than 500g of cocaineDuring the traffic stop, a drug-sniffing K9 detected drugs in the car, leading deputies to find approximately 500 grams of cocaine, according to the DOJ. WATCH: Fort Myers lotto looter on the run with stacks of scratchers June 16, 2021 AdvertisementWhen deputies were searching Vazquez’s house, they found an additional 700 grams of cocaine, cash and a loaded gun, the release said.Investigators with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration and the Lee County Sheriff’s Office worked this case. It was prosecuted by  Assistant United States Attorneys Simon Eth and David Sullivan. AdvertisementRecommended ArticlesBrie Larson Reportedly Replacing Robert Downey Jr. As The Face Of The MCURead more81 commentsGal Gadot Reportedly Being Recast As Wonder Woman For The FlashRead more29 commentslast_img read more

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In Pictures: All the best pictures from Day 1 of Cumman na mBunscol finals

By on June 20, 2021

first_imgHome GAA Cumann na mBunscol In Pictures: All the best pictures from Day 1 of Cumman na… GAACumann na mBunscolSport In Pictures: All the best pictures from Day 1 of Cumman na mBunscol finals Community By Julie Anne Miller – 24th October 2018 Laois secondary school announces scholarship winners for new academic year Twitter Community WhatsApp TAGSCumann na mBunscol 2018 Council Pinterest Our photographer Julie Anne Miller was on hand to get the best of the action from Day 1 which you can see below: SEE ALSO – REVEALED: The Laois GAA award winners for 2018 Facebook Facebook Pinterest WhatsApp RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Charlie Flanagan on Electric Picnic: ‘I’d ask organisers to consult with community leaders’ We thoroughly enjoyed yesterday and cannot wait for today’s games.It was exactly glorious sunshine but it was dry conditions and we can’t complain about that for Day 1 of the Cumann na mBunscol football finals at the end of October.We had a total of eight finals down for decision yesterday and there were some truly dramatic affairs in them.The day started with one of the closest affairs as Arles NS edged out Mayo NS of Crettyard by a point.Rushall and Killanure won their respective finals in more comfortable circumstances with Killanure’s Colm Conroy netting ten goals.The game between Castletown and Paddock NS in the Roinn 3 Girls required double extra time while Clonenagh won a title in their first appearance in the finals in decades.Scoil Bhride Mountrath, St Colman’s and Clonaghdoo NS took the final titles of the day.It was a great day as the boys and girls celebrated their victories. Previous articleRace Night fundraiser for local soccer club Towerhill RoversNext articleLaoisToday polls show swing towards controversial Presidential candidate Julie Anne MillerLaoisToday’s main photographer Julie Anne Miller is a graduate from GMIT. Despite her young age, Julie Anne has years of experience in the food industry. She has worked in Tynan’s at the Storeyard in Portlaoise, Ballymaloe House in Cork and Beach Point Country Club in New York. She has also contributed a food column to the Irish Country Living section of the Irish Farmers Journal. She’s willing to talk about anything – except football! New Arles road opens but disquiet over who was invited to official opening Twitterlast_img read more

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Less than 18 months after the best of times for Laois hurling, this is another fine mess

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first_img Twitter Electric Picnic Less than 18 months after the best of times for Laois hurling, this is another fine mess Laois hurling manager Eddie Brennan Not for the first time, Laois hurling finds itself in a mess.And this is a mess.Eddie Brennan, a quality inter-county manager is gone, so too the highly-regarded coach Niall Corcoran and Laois hurling legend Tommy Fitzgerald who was a selector.The blame game won’t be long about starting (it already has online). And it’ll go in all directions.The County Board will take the brunt of it, as they invariably do. The media won’t be spared from certain quarters either. And nor will Brennan whose explosive off-the-record interview which was mistakenly aired on the GAA Hour podcast exposed a relationship with Laois GAA officials that was obviously incredibly brittle as it was.Brennan apologised to the officials that had been named in that broadcast and the whole thing was addressed at a management meeting on the Wednesday night after that Monday broadcast.Further correspondence from Brennan was read out at the meeting and the minutes of that noted that “a delegation was agreed to meet Eddie Brennan to try and resolve the matter and bring to a satisfactory conclusion”.But the minutes noted also that “the meeting expressed disappointment at the derogatory remarks … and (the) entire executive committee were effectively tarnished and unfortunately, as a result, the Laois GAA brand”.The management did meet with County Board officials last Tuesday and again this week.It was reported last week that the talks were positive but there was little in the way of comment from either side. Those initial talks obviously weren’t positive enough, however.The gap between what Brennan wanted and what Laois could give was obviously too big.For Laois County Board it is the worst case scenario: having to replace a top county manager whose scathing criticism of them was heard by the entire country.After the interview fiasco, the widespread hope in the hurling community in Laois was that things could be patched up and attention could swiftly turn to the 2021 season.In the immediate aftermath of the one-point loss to Clare, Brennan outlined his need for further support. But in the background, it was said that instead of being able to increase the budget for 2021, it was actually going to have to be decreased. Like all counties, Laois GAA’s finances have taken a huge hit this year.At the core of Brennan’s grievances was that Laois County Board weren’t funding the hurling set up to the level he wanted. He also had serious issues with the level of ambition shown as well as not being happy over how the club hurling championship had been played this year.The Laois backroom team is miniscule in comparison to the other teams playing in the Liam MaCarthy competition. 2018 All Ireland champions Limerick had a backroom team totalling 23 members; Tipperary’s was even bigger when they won it in 2019, so big that they had their own separate bus on matchdays.As it is, Laois are disadvantaged enough. None of the top counties have as small a playing population as Laois and in the majority, hurling is considerably the main game.There is no doubting that Brennan and his management team did incredible work in their two years and injected huge levels of quality, energy and enthusiasm into the whole setup.When he took over, Laois had just about avoided a relegation playoff from the Joe McDonagh Cup. They’d lost by 10 points to both Kerry and Carlow.Within a year they were Joe McDonagh Cup champions, knocking Dublin out of the championship in an unforgettable day in O’Moore Park and bringing 15,000 supporters to Croke Park for an All Ireland quarter-final with Tipperary.It was Laois’s best summer since reaching the 1985 Leinster final when they beat Wexford in the semi-final.This year’s league saw them suffer defeat in four of the five games but they were consistently being more competitive and respectable. The loss to Dublin in Croke Park was disappointing but the one-point defeat to Clare in the All Ireland Qualifiers was another sign that progress had been made.It may have been a missed opportunity but it was another very hard-working and honest display, one that had become a trademark in the past two seasons.Brennan occasionally showed his frustration at various elements. He took over after the poisonous 2018 county final and it inevitably seeped into the county set up. He regularly bemoaned the fact that many county-standard players chose not to commit, something that left him even more bewildered after the magical 2019 season.For the Laois players, it has to be disappointing. Even with the current management there was a still a huge amount of work to do to close the gap to the top teams. But there was a good set up in place to facilitate their improvement.There was also a need to get even more buy in from players who didn’t commit and bring on board those who did want to play but weren’t wanted this year.Could more have been done to provide what was wanted? Should a case be made for Laois hurling to be given special treatment from Croke Park to help them stay at the top level and continue to grow as was floated by Sunday Game pundit Donal Óg Cusack following the Clare defeat?Would the establishment of an independent supporters club help, not just this current Laois senior hurling team but all our top level county teams? Could more partners be brought on board to help the county setups?The hope was that Laois could hold their own in the round robin Leinster championship over the next few years. The fear, though, is that this could set Laois back years and it wouldn’t take much to end up like Offaly who are stuck in the third tier Christy Ring Cup, knocked out by Down this year.What now? Where will the search for a new manager go? What calibre of candidate can Laois attract in the current circumstances? The uncertainty in relation to next year’s league and championship surely won’t help either.And what of Brennan and his management? At the moment there is no obvious inter-county vacancy though you can imagine there will be no shortage of offers at club level.For Laois there’s no easy solutions. Putting the pieces back together will be a sensitive, painstaking process.Less than 18 months after the best of times for Laois hurling and when pre-season preparations should be getting underway, there’s no manager, no management team and no end to the current problems.What a way to round out the year.SEE ALSO – Former Laois manager steps down from role as Kerry U-20 football boss WhatsApp Electric Picnic organisers release statement following confirmation of new festival date RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Facebook Twitter WhatsApp By Steven Miller – 24th November 2020 Pinterest Electric Picnic Pinterest Previous article350 jobs saved in Bord na Mona through Carbon Store and Capture PlanNext articleCoronavirus: 226 new cases and six new deaths as fines system for regulation breaches published Steven Millerhttp://www.laoistoday.ieSteven Miller is owner and managing editor of LaoisToday.ie. From Laois, Steven studied Journalism in DCU and has 14 years experience in the media, almost 10 of those in an editorial role. Husband of Emily, father of William and Lillian, he’s happiest when he’s telling stories or kicking a point. Home Sport GAA Less than 18 months after the best of times for Laois hurling,… SportGAAHurling Laois Councillor ‘amazed’ at Electric Picnic decision to apply for later date for 2021 festival Electric Picnic Facebook Electric Picnic apply to Laois County Council for new date for this year’s festival TAGSEddie BrennanLaois senior hurlers last_img read more

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Laois mental health advocate launches ‘wipe your worries away’ teddy bear walk

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first_imgHome News Community Laois mental health advocate launches ‘wipe your worries away’ teddy bear walk NewsCommunity Laois mental health advocate launches ‘wipe your worries away’ teddy bear walk WhatsApp Pinterest Pinterest Facebook Twitter A Laois mental health advocate and his partner have launched a ‘wipe your worries away’ teddy bear walk.Mark Condon, from Ballycarroll outside Stradbally, went public on his  22-year battle with depression one year ago.Mark, following the tragic death of his friend, went public urging people who are struggling to talk to others, or him, in a bid to get some help.Since then, Mark has created two Facebook pages and a YouTube Channel which have amassed thousands of followers.Posting off his own personal account today, Mark, and his partner Bernadette Donovan, unveiled their latest project in the Cathhole Falls in Ballyfin.Mark explained: “Our new project, Teddy Bear walk ‘wipe your worries away’ is something completely different.“We have a whiteboard where people can come and write down whatever it is that is troubling them and then simply wipe it away.“For children, sometimes they may not be able to explain what their worry is so an adult can bring them here and see what they are writing down in order to help them overcome whatever difficulty they are dealing with.“It can also be a family adventure spot. There are over 20 bears dotted along the walk.“We would ask that everyone please respects the bears and the whiteboard and do not damage them in any way.”Mark also hopes to erect bears in other woods and forested areas in the coming months.He said: “We hope to put the bears up in the forests around Laois in the coming months.“I spy a great incentive of getting the kids out to the fresh air and getting their heads clear of their little worries.”SEE ALSO – WATCH: Laois man opens up about 22-year battle with depression in bid to help others Facebook Electric Picnic Mary Sweeney elected Cathaoirleach of Portlaoise Municipal District for next 12 months Electric Picnic apply to Laois County Council for new date for this year’s festival Council Previous articleWATCH: Success for Laois trainer in Killarney with Snugsborough HallNext articleSadness following the passing of much loved Brother who spent 30 years in Castletown LaoisToday Reporter RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR TAGSBallyfinCatholesMark CondonMental Health Electric Picnic organisers release statement following confirmation of new festival date WhatsApp Electric Picnic By LaoisToday Reporter – 11th May 2021 Twitterlast_img read more

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Media’s role in unification of Germany, applications for two Koreas

By on June 19, 2021

first_img News North Korea tries to accelerate building of walls and fences along border with China Entire border patrol unit in North Hamgyong Province placed into quarantine following “paratyphoid” outbreak Media’s role in unification of Germany, applications for two Koreas There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest SHARE At the time of reunification, Germany had apopulation roughly the same as that of present day Korea, and it was aneconomic powerhouse more prosperous than Korea. However, one should considerthat just like the construction of the (high-speed railway) KTX line in Koreawas easier because the ICE line in Germany and the TGV line in France hadalready been built, we can hope for things to be much easier because there isalready a precedent. Admittedly, Germany experienced many unseen difficulties,due to the unexpected and rather abrupt timing of reunification, and rectifiedthese mistakes at a great cost. But if Korea can avoid mistakes by observingGermany’s own mistakes that were made through trial and error, Koreanreunification will be much easier.These are not thoughts limited to myself.Professor Bloom, who is in the department of economics at the University ofBamberg, wrote a piece titled “North Korea’s Reconstruction” for Die Zeit. DieZeit is a highly respected German national weekly newspaper. In the piece, hediscusses the “Korean Catalogue”. In brief, he states that the Germanreunification process was never experienced before, and if Korea avoids themistakes made by Germans, they would have a much easier transition into being aunited country. This statement is echoed by German Professor Frank who is atthe University of Vienna. This is why I look favorably upon the “followereffect” when addressing Korean reunification. One should not get caught up inthe belief that Korea’s reunification will be much more difficult thanGermany’s.3. I believe that the media throughplatforms like television and radio played an important part in Germanreunification. Can you describe the media’s role at the time? We regard German reunification as amiracle. This view is held not only by Koreans, but also by numerous Germanexperts and politicians, and it is reflected in many books. It was consideredthat miraculous to many. The unexpected nature of German reunification teachesus that even in a divided state, there can be peaceful coexistence. In reality,there was already much exchange and cooperation between East and West Germany.There were programs of mutual exchanges and cooperation between the twocountries. Among them was an exchange of TV programs. West German viewers couldwatch East German programs that were more sophisticated and provocative thanthose of West Germany. However, a surprising truth is that most East GermansWest Germany’s 8 o’clock news as a source of dependable international news.This largely stemmed from the distrust people slowly accumulated about theEast’s communist party. Despite the division, the mutual exchange of television programs kept the EastGermans well informed about what was happening in West Germany, and that isarguably one of the biggest influence that the media had in Germany. The mediaalso played a very important role in the bloodless revolution that caused thefalling of the Wall and eventually led to reunification. For instance,Schabowski, the East German communist party spokesperson announced in a pressconference that a new regulation would allow East Germans to freely travel toWest Germany. Yet, the exact details were not yet determined, and when askedwhen exactly this regulation would become effective by an Italian reporter, hemistakenly responded that it would happen ‘without delay’. East German viewersimmediately flocked to the Berlin Wall, so much so that the guards could notcontain the massive crowds. This announcement led to the fall of the BerlinWall, and the defeat of East Germany — another important example of what rolethe media played. 4. Which, do you think, among the manyforms of media, had the most influence upon the East Germans’ mindset regardingreunification?   West Germany had two public programs: ARD and ZDF. These two channels’ 8 o’clock newsarguably had the greatest influence on East Germans. It was broadcast in EastGermany essentially in its entirety. Of course the East German government hadits own alternative broadcast, called the Black Channel. Their purposes weresimilar to contemporary North Korean programs, by providing a different andmore favorable North Korean spin on international events. However, the EastGerman programs were less influential than the Western news programs. 5. I believe one of the great strength ofthe East Germans was their desire for change and freedom. Could media act as abridge, forwarding the reunification efforts in Korea, as it did in EastGermany, by giving people more hope for reuniting? Of course. Media helps convey information.Today, North Korea is completely separated from the rest of the world. Althoughthere is a flow of information, it is very obstructed due to North Korea beinga closed society. There are, of course, other illicit channels of information,but it is hard for it to be passed around because the North is so closed off.If the media is unrestricted, then continuation of the regime will be verydifficult. Therefore, media can play a very important role in speeding upreunification. 6. In order for the media to properlyfunction, it seems that efforts from civilian groups and government policiesneed to come together. What is the South Korean government’s support policy onmedia for reunification? Before expecting governmental support forthe media, it is important to ensure that the current media such as theUnification Media Group, Far East Broadcasting Co., and KBS Radio KoreanNetwork, are continued. North Korean marketplaces also have an important functionas conduits of information. They are not simply locations where goods are sold,but also important centers of information exchange. This is why spreadinginformation in the form of flash drives, broadcasts, flyers, etc., must be done through themarketplaces. Propaganda flyers targeting North Korea might not seem like much,but many, including officials at Seoul’s Ministry of Unification, anticipatethat it will yield great results. This is because during negotiations withNorth Korea, time after time it demands for an end to leaflet distributions. In other words, it means that the effectsof the flyers are quite large when placed properly. These flyers contain truths that North Koreanscould never imagine. Despite the size of these flyers, they contain universalmessages of truth, human rights, hope and freedom, and that, when fitted welltogether, will have a huge impact. 7. Just as media played a large role inGerman reunification, what kind of programs must be directed at North Koreansin order to foster hope and desire? What should the contents broadly be? In my opinion, the contents should showsomething along the lines of the value of liberal democracy or universal humanrights, especially because North Koreans cannot conceive such truths. It isimportant to show them what kind of system they are living in, and to make themaware of the twisted nature of their living conditions. I’ve heard from firstgeneration defectors that they were shocked after reading these flyers. Oneperson was taught that the Korean War was started by South Korea in an attemptto invade North Korea. However, after reading the leaflet and learning that itwas not so, but rather the very opposite she made the immediate decision todefect. Even minute details can leave huge impressions on the isolated NorthKorean citizens, which is why I think it is good to include such details inmedia. 8. North Korean authorities are extremelystrict in controlling the flow of information. As a result, the chances of ourbroadcasts being heard are pretty low. Under such circumstances, what means canwe use to awareness in North Korea? The North Korean authorities cannot blockthe flow of information forever. No matter how strong a dictatorship, it issimply impossible. We already know that present day North Korean society is notthe same as it was under Kim Il Sung’s rule. Many citizens have complaints andexpress their thoughts. Statistically the Kim Jong Un era has yielded anincredible amount of public executions and purges, all under the public eye,and this is probably changing people’s perceptions as well. As previouslymentioned, the content of the flyers, flash drives, shortwave broadcasts andAmerica’s Radio Free Asia, Far East Broadcasting Company and the likes beingdirected at North Korea may seem to contain little, but it can have hugeimpacts on North Korean citizens. Regardless of the method, I believe that allactivities are beneficial.   9. For a very long time, you’ve researchedGerman reunification and applied your experiences to Korea. If you have a fewwords you’d like to share with people listening up North. I understand things must be difficult atthe moment. It must be hard to get by and work but on top of that having toattend self-criticism sessions and group events. Life at state-run enterpriseswill probably be extremely tough as well.  But I remember at one meetingthat I attended, someone said, “North Korean people, please, just stay alive.” Nomatter what hardships you are going through, if you do not lose hope, then Iwould say that a reunified future is waiting for you. Even though you are livingin pain, I want to say that you must experience freedom and human rights, andthe abundance brought by capitalism. You must experience what it is like tolive in a society where you can go without being hungry and not constantlylooking over your shoulder. That is what I’d like to say. AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] By Daily NK – 2015.09.08 9:43am News Today’s “Unification Table Talk” segment will focus on the influenceof media on Germany’s reunification as well as its potential influence onKorean reunification. We are joined by Park Sang Bong, who is the formerdirector of the Institute for Unification Education as well as the currentdirector of the German Reunification Research Institute.1. Professor, you are a leading authorityon pre and post-reunification Germany. Is there a special reason why you becameso interested in this subject?I wouldn’t say there was a particularreason. The Berlin Wall fell while I was studying abroad in Germany, and so Iwitnessed West Germany’s dreams of reunification become reality with my owneyes. After witnessing such an event, a Korean can’t help but develop aconsiderable interest in reunification. Of course, many international studentsalso observed this event, but as I was studying I came across topics onreunification, so I ended up focusing my studies on German reunification. 2. Germany’s reunification did not comeabout easily. What are your opinions about Korea’s own reunification? 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Pandemic puts finances in focus for investors, OSC reports

By on June 18, 2021

first_img Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Keywords Pandemics,  Coronavirus,  Investing,  Investment scamsCompanies Ontario Securities Commission Related news In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, a large majority of retail investors are focused on their saving and spending behaviour, suggests a new survey from the Ontario Securities Commission’s (OSC) Investor Office.The regulator published the results Monday of an online survey of 2,000 investors carried out by Ipsos in September and October 2020. The poll found that almost one-third (32%) said their financial situation was worse due to the disruption caused by the pandemic, compared with 16% who said that their finances had improved. A deadly first wave, followed by a tsunami of excess deaths CERB payments went to workers hit hard by lockdowns: StatsCan Almost 10% of investors said they’d incurred significant (at least $5,000) unanticipated expenses due to the pandemic.Among those who sold investments since the pandemic hit, 29% did so to finance their expenses, compared with just 17% who sold to crystallize profits, the OSC reported.The study found that 60% of sellers had sold mutual funds specifically; of those, almost half (47%) reported that they’d paid no fee on the transactions, 18% said their fees were waived, and 12% weren’t sure. Just over one-quarter (27%) said they had paid a fee to sell their funds.Among those who continued buying investments during the pandemic, almost one-third (30%) said they did so as they make contributions on a regular basis, and another 28% said they bought because assets were undervalued.Looking ahead, 73% of respondents said that, in the wake of the pandemic, they’d like to start saving for future emergencies. Additionally, 73% said they’d focus on reducing on debt, and 70% said that watching their spending would become a priority.“We continue to see the uneven impact that this crisis is having on retail investors,” said Tyler Fleming, director of the OSC’s Investor Office, in a release.“Understanding how the pandemic is affecting different segments of the population is essential for supporting retail investors during this difficult time,” he said.Another key concern since the onset of the pandemic has been the emergence of investment scams, including companies claiming to be able to profit from the crisis with purported cures for Covid-19 or other products that would benefit from the public health emergency.While the survey found that only about 6% said they’d been approached about a pandemic-related investment opportunity that promised high returns for low risk, it also reported that a remarkable 39% bought into the scheme. Another 24% responded to the approach and decided not to invest; 13% responded but decided it was a scam; and 12% never responded, thinking that the pitch was a scam from the outset. Ontario unlikely to balance budget by 2030: FAO man reading tablet and writing on paper iStockphoto James Langton Facebook LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more

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