HUNGARY: Symbolic posthumous victory for Nepszabadsag journalists

first_imgNews Journalists of Hungary’s daily newspaper Nepszabadsag protest in front of parliament / AFP HungaryEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalistsMedia independence CorruptionConflicts of interestEconomic pressureFreedom of expression January 14, 2017 HUNGARY: Symbolic posthumous victory for Nepszabadsag journalists Follow the news on Hungary Swedish Reporters Without Borders awards press freedom prize to a Hungarian news site Receive email alerts News to go further RSF_en Organisation Use the Digital Services Act to make democracy prevail over platform interests, RSF tells EU Hungary’s leading independent radio station taken off the air Help by sharing this information News June 2, 2021 Find out more News May 4, 2021 Find out more Reporters Without Borders (RSF) hails a Hungarian court’s ruling that the leading opposition daily Nepszabadsag’s sudden closure last October was illegal because its owners and management should have consulted with the employee committee in a bid to keep publishing and avoid laying off all the staff.Employees learned of the closure when they arrived at the newspaper on 9 October to start preparing the next day’s issue and were denied entry. The owners, the Hungarian group Mediaworks, had decided in the space of a few hours and without any prior announcement to suspend operations because sales were plummeting.Founded 60 years ago when the Soviet yoke was lifted, the independent and outspoken newspaper was much loved by Hungarians and its closure caused an outcry, with thousands taking to the streets in a show of support for media freedom.A few weeks later, Mediaworks’ Austrian owner nonetheless sold Nepszabadsag to Opimus Press, a media group owned by an associate of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.It was the manner of the closure and the way the dismissal of the staff was initially disguised as temporary layoffs that led the court, in the ruling issued last week, to condemn Mediaworks for failing to respect the prescribed procedures and time frame for dismissals.“This is a moral victory for the staff of Nepszabadsag, even if the ruling unfortunately has no criminal or financial consequences for the newspaper’s owner,” said Pauline Adès-Mével, the head of the RSF’s European Union-Balkans desk. “The judge’s ruling made it clear that, if the procedures had been respected, the newspaper would not have had to close and fire its 90 employees.”Democracy has been in steady retreat since Fidesz won the 2010 election and Hungary is ranked 67th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2016 World Press Freedom Index, after falling 48 places in just five years. HungaryEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalistsMedia independence CorruptionConflicts of interestEconomic pressureFreedom of expression February 10, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

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City Manager Praises First Responders at Scene of Fallen Tree Incident

first_img Subscribe Business News Herbeauty9 Of The Best Family Friendly Dog BreedsHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyYou Can’t Go Past Our Healthy Quick RecipesHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyCostume That Makes Actresses Beneath Practically UnrecognizableHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyTips From A Professional Stylist On How To Look Stunning In 2020HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty7 Most Startling Movie Moments We Didn’t Realize Were InsensitiveHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty7 Tips To Rejuvenate Winter Dry, Chapped LipsHerbeautyHerbeauty Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Government City Manager Praises First Responders at Scene of Fallen Tree Incident From STAFF REPORTS Published on Monday, August 3, 2015 | 11:25 am More Cool Stuff City Manager Michael J. Beck said the city’s response to the tree collapse incident Tuesday in front of the Kidspace Children’s Museum at Brookside Park was no less than commendable and something he is proud about.“While our thoughts and prayers are with the injured children and their families, I cannot overemphasize enough how extremely proud I am of the city employees who responded to this tragic incident,” Beck said in a report to the Pasadena City Council.Eight children were injured in the incident, six of whom were treated at the park and released and two others taken to the Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center. A third child was taken there but released after treatment.Beck mentioned particularly the efforts of the Pasadena firefighters and police officers who engaged in a joint rescue operation to get the kids out of the tangle of branches that fell on most of them when the tree collapsed.Within minutes, the rescuers had accounted for more than 30 children who were given emergency medical care on the scene, some transported by ambulances to the hospital, Beck said.An independent arborist hired by the city is still trying to determine why the 75-year old pine tree collapsed Tuesday and injured at least eight children as they were getting ready to go home.A report about the possible cause could be released this week, officials said.Earlier, the city’s arborist and other investigators said they could not see any indication why the tree collapsed. City authorities said it could not have been because of the drought because the tree and all other trees on Brookside Park were being watered regularly in spite of water use restrictions.The two critically injured children had recovered sufficuently to be released Monday, August 3. Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday 2 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Community Newscenter_img Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Top of the News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * First Heatwave Expected Next Week EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Community News faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPasadena Public WorksPasadena Water and PowerPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Make a comment Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

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Following public concern, Lansing supervisor denies developer donation impacted vote

first_imgLANSING, N.Y. –– A recent vote regarding a big development in Lansing has stirred some controversy.At a Lansing Town Board meeting last week, it came to a head when some members of the public voiced concern with a recent vote by Town Supervisor Ed LaVigne, who voted to extend the construction date of the Village Solars project. LaVigne, a Republican, is currently seeking re-election, and some raised concern and said he should have abstained from the vote because the project developers – the Lucente family – had donated $8,400 to the Lansing Republican Committee a few weeks before.However, LaVigne maintains the vote was routine and had nothing to do with any contribution, and a member of the Lucente family has called the uproar a “coordinated character assassination” of LaVigne.Village Solars under construction (Courtesy of Brian Crandell/Ithaca Voice)Getting up to speed on the Village Solars projectThe Village Solars project is an apartment complex on the 1000 block of Warren Road being built by Lifestyle Properties and the Lucente Family. It was initially approved for 174 units in 13 buildings in 2012 but has evolved to include a total of 277 units.In 2013, the Town of Lansing approved plans for the Village Solars Planned Development Area. Planned Development Areas are different from traditional projects in that they override existing zoning regulations. For Village Solars, that means they can construct both residential buildings, alongside recreational and retail spaces. As part of the approval, the developer, the Lucente family, agreed to construct a community center within the apartment complex, within the span of five years. The community center is meant to be a space for “self-service laundry facilities, restaurants, public and private health centers, public and private gymnasiums, business and rental offices for onsite operations or facilities and up to 20 one-bedroom and micro-unit apartments.”Revised Village Solars layout (Brian Crandell/Ithaca Voice)In June 2017, a local law filing, approved by the town board, amended the agreement with the Lucentes, permitting a delay on construction of the community center until Dec. 31, 2020. The amendment also stipulated that until the Community Center was built, two of five existing building permits for the project would be put on hold. The other three permits were granted, allowing construction to move forward on other areas of the project outside of the community center.On Aug. 21, LaVigne and Lansing Town Board Members Doug Dake (R) and Katrina Binkewicz (D) approved a second extension to the project, with board member Joseph Wetmore (D, G), voting against. The extension gives them an additional year to put off breaking ground on the community center, and finish other portions of the project. The two building permits are still being levied against the community center, and will not be issued until it is complete. A large donation and its timing draws questionsIt wasn’t the first extension for the project, but the fact that there was an $8,400 donation from Stephen Lucente to the Lansing Republican Committee six weeks before the vote — and the only donation made by the Lucente family to the committee in the past 10 years — made some pause. At a packed town board meeting Wednesday, local residents called for more transparency and an explanation of the donation’s timing.LaVigne and board members made no public comment at the meeting and instead went into executive session after members of the public spoke. The Town Board has not made any public statement on the issue.In an interview with The Ithaca Voice, LaVigne said the donation had no impact on his decision to extend the project and said he was not even aware of the donation, which went to the committee, at the time. “People don’t notify me of anything,” LaVigne said.He said what did impact the need for an extension was a death in the Lucente family.In March 2018, Rocco Lucente Sr. died unexpectedly. Rocco Sr. is the father of Steve Lucente –– in charge of the Village Solars project. Rocco Sr. at the time was building an apartment complex in an adjacent lot, which, according to LaVigne, his son Steve wanted to incorporate into the Village Solars project. The new plot has plans for additional housing units, prompting the Lucente’s to shift their building plan to include a bigger and more centrally located community center to accommodate the increased perspective population.“His father died,” LaVigne said. “He wanted to have time to acquire more land. And if he acquired more land all of Village Solars would be a much bigger project. Sadly, if his father didn’t pass away, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”  Anna Lamb Your government news is made possible with support from: Official plans for the new community center have not been brought forward for approval yet. At the Aug. 21 Town Board meeting, the Village Solars Project Engineer Lawrence Fabroni told the board that plans would be drawn up following the board’s approval of the waiver. Before voting in August, the members that voted for the amendment relied on the positive recommendation from the Lansing Planning Board. The planning board is made up of Gerald Caward, Jr., chairman; Al Fiorille – vice chairman; Norman L. Davidson; Sandra Dennis Conlon; Larry Sharpsteen; Dean Shea; and Deborah Trumbull.    Town Board member Joseph Wetmore raised concern over the timing of the Lucente’s waiver request –– asserting that the developers knew they weren’t going to break ground next year after Rocco Sr.’s death in 2018. In the Aug. 21 meeting, project engineer Fabroni told the Town Board they had entered into discussions with their bank in January of this year regarding the future of the project.“I think some people feel the Planning Board’s recommendation is something they have to have strong reasons to go against, and I think there is validity in that,” said Wetmore, who voted against the extension. “What I found unconvincing from the applicants is why this became a last-minute emergency when they knew about it in advance.”Steve Lucente has not responded to requests for comment about the timing of his donation. Lavigne has remained firm that he was not swayed by the money from the Lucente’s, and in a public post on Facebook, volunteered to take the matter to the Lansing Ethics Committee. “We have somebody that actually wants to build in Lansing that has an excellent relationship and because they donate money they think it’s inappropriate for the situation when the bottom line is we were voting on what the planning board recommended,” LaVigne said. He believes the Lucente’s donation is supporting a positive direction for Lansing’s future.“If somebody donates something, don’t you think it’s because they like the way things are going?” he asked. “We have worked so well with these people, they’ve added much tax base to our community which is hemorrhaging as far as tax base goes … they have poured money into the Lansing community, they’re environmentally friendly and they’re market rate.” The Lansing Republican Committee funds all of the Republican campaigns in town, including LaVigne’s. Tompkins County Legislator Mike Sigler (R-Lansing), who is in charge of the Republican Committee’s fundraising, said LaVigne does not directly deal with campaign finances. “Ed doesn’t touch any of the money,” he said. “In fact, Ed doesn’t approve any of the money.”When asked if LaVigne would have known about the donation at the time of the vote, Sigler replied, “No, he probably wouldn’t have.” A packed town board meetingMore than 30 people were in attendance at last Wednesday’s Lansing Town Board meeting, filling rows of seats in the audience. At the meeting, Steve’s son, Rocco Lucente Jr. who spoke on behalf of his family, said the complaints about the donation and LaVigne’s donation are part of a “coordinated character assassination.”“This attack isn’t about the community center, not one resident of our complex has been complaining to us about the community center waiver –– not one,” he said. “This grotesque coordinated character assassination is designed to smear a member of this board and scare us away from ever participating in our community again … I call on every board member to condemn this attack, to say that it’s not true and that this sort of behavior has no place in Lansing.”Rocco Lucente at the Oct. 16 meeting (Screenshot from Lansing Town Board meeting video)Several people spoke during privilege of the floor –– some speaking in favor on behalf of the Lucente family, and some asking for more transparency from their town officials. Ithaca attorney Peter Salton said though he is not from Lansing, he said he was concerned enough to attend and wanted to support the Lucentes. “I worked for the Lucentes in the 1980s, I’ve known this family and they’re nothing if not upfront. I want to congratulate the board on allowing them to build Village Solars and to have a planned development area. I think it’s a great idea. It’s a beautiful thing, it’s a win-win for the community,” Salton said.Lansing resident Melanie Malone said she wanted to see more transparency in politics. “From the information I’ve heard, it’s really not about Lucente personally, it’s about the ethics laws in the Town of Lansing and the laws of this state that apply to our town officials. It’s not a personal attack on anyone,” she said. “Integrity is the cornerstone of leadership. When these instances happen and there are appearances of impropriety it makes one feel like regular people in Lansing, those who work for a living, those who might be working right now, and can’t come to these meetings, those without power and influence are being sidelined as development takes place in the town.” center_img Tagged: development, ed lavigne, lansing, lansing town board, stephen lucente, village solars Anna Lamb is a reporter for the Ithaca Voice.Questions? Story tips? Contact her at [email protected] More by Anna Lamblast_img read more

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If/Then Singing Contest Finalists Announced! Vote For Your Favorite to Win!

first_imgANALISE RIOSBronx, New York <a data-cke-saved-href="https://broadway.wufoo.com/forms/mxmrpiy03ds8fm/" href="https://broadway.wufoo.com/forms/mxmrpiy03ds8fm/">Fill out my Wufoo form!</a> After hours upon hours of big belting and big deliberation, the Broadway.com editorial team is ready to reveal the five finalists for our If/Then singing contest. Now it’s up to YOU to pick the winner! Watch the five finalist renditions of “Always Starting Over,” the big eleven o’clock number of the hit Broadway musical that is hitting the road next week, and then vote for the best (voting ends Tuesday, October 13 at 5PM EST). The winner will receive a trip to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, CA to see the show live and a special If/Then prize pack. Thanks to everyone who entered!JENNIFER LAFRENIEREProspect, Connecticut View Comments MEGAN ROZAKBuffalo, New York NICK MULLINSManchester, Tennessee LISA-MARIE LEGGHaines City, Floridalast_img read more

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Ramsey: Barton has matured

first_imgJoey Barton’s QPR career looked to be over when he stupidly got sent off at Manchester City three years ago, yet he returns to the Etihad Stadium this weekend a much more mature figure and one which Chris Ramsey believes could become a successful manager. That moment appeared to be the end of his Loftus Road career, with the midfielder handed a 12-match ban by the Football Association and farmed out to Marseille on loan. However, the 32-year-old returned at the end of that spell and has somewhat surprisingly won around QPR fans, players and staff, including manager Ramsey. “He had a reputation that was questionable but you have to take people as you meet them,” the Rs boss said. “Since I have met him, I have only ever had interesting debates with him and talks. “I don’t think you can come into a situation and take people based on what people think. “He has not displayed anything to me that would warrant me believing the stories that I heard. “He has not conducted that in that fashion. He has conducted himself in a very professional manner from training and to around the place. “He has his opinion. He has taken instruction on board and has not gone against anything I have asked him to do – whether he believed him or not. Press Association “I have been quite impressed with him and in the future he will probably be a good coach and manager.” Ramsey believes Barton is at a “different stage of his life” as he prepares to return to City in another battle to stave off the drop, with defeat on Sunday sealing their relegation. It would make what Ramsey calls a “rebuilding period” even tougher this summer, with a Financial Fair Play fine and player changes looming large. That does not faze the Rs manager, though, and he would be keen to extend his contract past the summer. “A long-term plan is always sensible, because it means whatever happens the club stays on an even keel,” Ramsey said. “I think the owners will be looking at some sort of plan. How long that will remain to be seen, depending on where we are and what we’re doing. “Most things are up my street. Managing a team that’s mid table or pushing up. I don’t mind anything regards coaching or management. “The club’s in exciting times. At the moment it’s intense times because we want to stay up and win the game on Sunday and next week, and the game against Leicester. “But the club has been learned there is a necessity to make a long-term plan and I would be well suited to that. “I think it would be good for anyone who came in to build a club like Queens Park Rangers, with a long history, good catchment area, the ability to attract the right players. “Even if we do stay up, there needs to be a long-term strategy.” The final day of the 2011-12 season will forever be synonymous with Sergio Aguero’s last-gasp strike, earning a 3-2 win which saw City secure a first league title in 44 years. That match was also of huge importance to embattled QPR and only results elsewhere saved them from relegation – not that Barton knew that when he was sent off following a fit of rage with the score at 1-1. last_img read more

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Swiss law allows more scrutiny of sports finances

first_imgSwiss lawmakers have passed legislation allowing more scrutiny of bank accounts held by sports officials and organizations.The law passed on Friday, in a 128-62 vote in the lower chamber of parliament, was prompted by FIFA bribery scandals in recent years.Switzerland-based sports leaders such as FIFA President Sepp Blatter and IOC President Thomas Bach are now classed as “politically exposed persons” in wider legislation covering money-laundering.Swiss lawmaker Roland Buechel says “normally these rules are for politicians and dictators.”Buechel says the law also applies to executive committee members and employees of sports federations.The law allows greater scrutiny of “any strange movement” in bank accounts and financial assets held in Switzerland, Buechel says. Buechel says further draft legislation making sports corruption a criminal offense could pass in 2016.Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/business/article4443936.html?#storylink=cpylast_img read more

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Curtis Everhart of Wellington is sentenced to 65 months of prison for two counts of meth distribution

first_imgby Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Curtis Everhart, 31, of Wellington has been sentenced in Sumner County District Court to 65 months  — nearly 5 1/2 years — in prison for pleading guilty to two different counts of distribution of methamphetamine, level 4 drug felonies.Everhart’s time in state prison could be reduced by 15 percent or 55 months for good behavior.Everhart pled guilty on two separate incidents – one on Wednesday, June 19 and one on Friday, May 24. The two sentences were concurrent meaning that Everhart will be serving time for both sentences at the same time, said Sumner County Attorney Kerwin Spencer.Spencer said had it not been for Everhart’s involvement with a high-speed chase that started in Wichita and ended in Wellington on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013 involving four Latino men, the City of Wellington police department and the Sumner County Drug Task Force may have never looked into Everhart’s drug activities.“That was a case of one of Sumner County’s bigger drug dealers, getting involved with much bigger drug dealers in Wichita in a deal that went bad,” Spencer said.On Feb. 26, four Latino men allegedly started chasing Everhart in a four-car chase that started in Sedgwick County, and ended peacefully in Wellington at 2:46 p.m. in the Orscheln’s Store parking lot in west Wellington at 1203 W. Eighth (see story here). Spencer said Everhart, driving a black Lincoln LS, was being pursued by three vehicles that involved the four suspects.“He was the victim in that crime,” Spencer said. “But this wasn’t the case with his subsequent cases.”On Friday, May 24, Everhart was then accused of obtaining a 22-inch Vizio television from a Winfield Wal-Mart originally said to be stolen by Gail Leighty. He then was obtained in Wellington where he was accused of having 24 grams of meth inside a black pouch in his glove compartment (see story here).Then on June 19, Everhart was arrested again for distribution of .17 grams of meth to two middlemen at the Wellington Steakhouse Motel on March 20. (See story here.)Spencer said other lesser felony and misdemeanor charges were dismissed after obtaining guilty pleas on the lengthier felony convictions. Close Forgot password? Please put in your email: Send me my password! Close message Login This blog post All blog posts Subscribe to this blog post’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Subscribe to this blog’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Follow the discussion Comments (30) Logging you in… Close Login to IntenseDebate Or create an account Username or Email: Password: Forgot login? Cancel Login Close WordPress.com Username or Email: Password: Lost your password? Cancel Login Dashboard | Edit profile | Logout Logged in as Admin Options Disable comments for this page Save Settings Sort by: Date Rating Last Activity Loading comments… You are about to flag this comment as being inappropriate. Please explain why you are flagging this comment in the text box below and submit your report. The blog admin will be notified. Thank you for your input. +9 Vote up Vote down Wellington proud · 354 weeks ago Another loser drughead off the street! Great job Kerwin and Wellington P.D. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago +6 Vote up Vote down Sally · 354 weeks ago Yeah, now do some more. We needed this years ago. I know the family is hurt but in the long run this should help the boy. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago -10 Vote up Vote down American Citizen · 354 weeks ago There should be a death sentense for meth pushers. Just look at the guy, do you think he will ever be a positive contributor to society? People like this destroy lives. We must do everything we can to protect young people from animals like Curtis Everhart. With this sentense Everhart will be out on the street in 50 months pushing his drugs, destroying more lives. Wake up America! Report Reply 9 replies · active 354 weeks ago +1 Vote up Vote down Thirsty · 354 weeks ago American is absolutely correct. Sending him to prison although seems like the correct thing to do just surrounds him for 5 years with similar offenders who have nothing better to do than to discuss how they got caught and how they can get away with it next time. People become creative and brilliant in prison. We need more services to help drug addicts and actually put the correction in corrections. Youth have a lot of programs that steer offenders from becoming repeat offenders. It is possible to rehabilitate some of these people but unfortunately not everybody is savable. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago -1 Vote up Vote down Guest · 354 weeks ago We had someone we tried to get help for and they didn’t want help. They have to be willing first to get the help. If not then prison is the place for them. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago +2 Vote up Vote down mr ed · 354 weeks ago he will do that time standing on his head. Only to return and deal again Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago -1 Vote up Vote down Yeahme · 354 weeks ago If you abuse a child, you only get 3 years in prison. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago -3 Vote up Vote down hatethissmalltown · 354 weeks ago Love you, Curtis. Report Reply 1 reply · active 350 weeks ago -1 Vote up Vote down mom2mykids · 354 weeks ago Finally now clean the rest of them up out of this town…off the streets… Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago -1 Vote up Vote down wellingtoncitizen · 354 weeks ago I really don’t see that prison is going to help due to the fact that they still have access to it. As mentioned above they have time to learn more and possibly become more violently invovled. What is the right thing to do with these drug dealers though? If you all can figure out how to force them to become clean when they are not ready then you have preformed a miracle in itself. Report Reply 0 replies · active 354 weeks ago 12Next » Post a new comment Enter text right here! Comment as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to WordPress.com Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments Comments by IntenseDebate Enter text right here! Reply as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to WordPress.com Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Cancel Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new commentslast_img read more

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Evolution Is a Magic Word

first_img(Visited 392 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享10 Media use the word “evolution” in articles that have nothing to do with it. It’s as if the word has magical powers to conjure up awe.Evolution, evolution, evolution. The e-word is ubiquitous in science articles and papers, even when the data have nothing to do with evolution as Darwin conceived it. (See the important preface in the 10/02/19 entry to understand what natural selection is and is not.)In the following examples, look how writers wave the e-word like a magic wand, assuming it has supernatural powers to create any highly-complex and well-designed entity, given enough time. In some cases, the word is used metaphorically. In none of these cases is it used to describe functional innovation by genetic mutations that were preserved by some mysterious “natural selector” somehow.Evolution tells us we might be the only intelligent life in the universe (The Conversation). “Evolution tells us?” Pray tell, where is evolution’s voice? Is it a he, she, or non-binary sentient force? Where is the podium from which Evolution teaches facts about reality? This weird article by long-time Darwin-lover Nick Longrich (now at University of Bath) comes to a possible conclusion that humans might be the only “intelligent” life in the universe, but of course he doubts it. And Longrich is pretty sure that life is evolving everywhere it can, even if non-intelligent. His fairy story is filled with assumptions that Sir/Madam Evolution has no trouble inventing biological marvels all over the universe (examples below) – except that maybe, though, the god Evolution has a little trouble creating thinking beings. Live Science reposted this article with the modified title, “Humans May Be the Only Intelligent Life in the Universe, If Evolution Has Anything to Say.” That’s a big If.The universe is large, and old, with time and room for intelligence to evolve…Could intelligence simply be unlikely to evolve? Unfortunately, we can’t study extraterrestrial life to answer this question. But we can study some 4.5 billion years of Earth’s history, looking at where evolution repeats itself, or doesn’t.Evolution sometimes repeats, with different species independently converging on similar outcomes. If evolution frequently repeats itself, then our evolution might be probable, even inevitable.Other striking cases of convergence include dolphins and extinct ichthyosaurs, which evolved similar shapes to glide through the water, and birds, bats and pterosaurs, which convergently evolved flight.Eyes evolved not just in vertebrates, but in arthropods, octopi, worms and jellyfish. Vertebrates, arthropods, octopi and worms independently invented jaws. Legs evolved convergently in the arthropods, octopi and four kinds of fish (tetrapods, frogfish, skates, mudskippers).The complex, eukaryotic cells that all animals and plants are built from, containing nuclei and mitochondria, evolved only once. Sex evolved just once. Photosynthesis, which increased the energy available to life and produced oxygen, is a one-off. For that matter, so is human-level intelligence.There are places where evolution repeats, and places where it doesn’t.  [See Stuff Happens Law]Humans couldn’t evolve until fish evolved bones that let them crawl onto land [etc].Earth’s history must have allowed intelligent life to evolve, or we wouldn’t be here to ponder it.Intelligence seems to depend on a chain of improbable events. But given the vast number of planets, then like an infinite number of monkeys pounding on an infinite number of typewriters to write Hamlet, it’s bound to evolve somewhere.Image credit: Illustra Media, The Case for a Creator.Regarding the monkey-typewriter myth, Longrich should have listened to the late Dr A.E. Wilder-Smith, who pointed out that the myth depends on the characters being preserved as the monkeys type. If the letters fall off the page soon after they are typed (like chemical reactions in the real world, which are reversible), the apes will never type anything worthwhile, even given infinite time.Repertoire-wide phylogenetic models of B cell molecular evolution reveal evolutionary signatures of aging and vaccination (PNAS). Evolution is so pervasive and pernicious, it is going on inside of you!High-affinity antibodies that protect us from infection are produced by B cells through an evolutionary process of mutation and selection during adaptive immune responses. B cell repertoire sequencing combined with phylogenetic methods has provided unprecedented potential to study B cells as an evolving population. However, phylogenetic models operate on individual lineages rather than the thousands of lineages often found in B cell repertoires. Here, we develop an evolutionary framework that incorporates B cell-specific features and combines information across lineages to characterize mutation and selection dynamics of entire repertoires.Now hold on just a cotton-pickin’ minute. Your body is not evolving, your family is not evolving, and your species is not evolving. We are all Homo sapiens, and what goes on inside of us has no bearing on your offspring (note that they are watching for changes during aging, which means your kids are already grown up). These six Darwinos are using natural selection in a metaphorical sense, but it doesn’t have anything to do with evolution. The fact is, B cells are extremely well designed to hone in on antigens so as to fight them. The last thing they need is Darwinism! If the human body were not designed to intelligently select the shape of potential antigen shapes from a pool of trials, you would die. This has nothing to do with evolution, and the authors should know it. They are confusing the public with such faulty analogies and equivocations, just like Darwin did when he compared artificial selection (intelligent design) to natural selection.How the earliest mammals thrived alongside dinosaurs (John Pickrell, Nature). Watch how Pickrell, like Longrich, merely assumes that Evolution has magical creative powers. When complex organs appear abruptly, that’s no problem for Evolution. It just means that the wonder-worker was on a roll. He/she/it worked super-fast, producing an explosion of inventions displaying creative genius.An explosion of fossil finds reveals that ancient mammals evolved a wide variety of adaptations allowing them to exploit the skies, rivers and underground lairs.[A mother of fossil young] is a cynodont, a member of the group from which mammals evolved.The discoveries are also starting to reveal the evolutionary origins of many of the key traits of mammals — such as lactation, large brains and superbly keen senses.A raft of extraordinary fossil finds is revealing details of how mammals evolved from reptilian forebears 178 million years ago.“We used to say that during the time of dinosaurs, mammals were totally unspectacular. That they were just these little mousey things scampering around in the shadows,” says Brusatte. But these animals “were undergoing their own evolutionary explosion”, he says.To make that possible, mammals evolved a wide variety of complex teeth for biting and grinding food.Much of the constellation of features we think of as defining mammals — complex teeth, excellent senses, lactation, small litter size — might actually have evolved before true mammals, and quite quickly. “More and more it looks like it all came out in a very short burst of evolutionary experimentation,” Luo says. By the time mammal-like creatures were roaming around in the Mesozoic, he says, “the lineage has already acquired its modern look and modern biological adaptations”.Notice the sophoxymoronic phrase “evolutionary experimentation.” If it’s experimentation, it’s not evolutionary, and vice versa. Experimentation presupposes a person with a mind and a goal, intent on learning something or accomplishing a purpose. By definition, Darwinian evolution is aimless and purposeless. Scientists who speak of “experimental evolution” in the lab are using their minds as selectors. They may use random variations, but they determine the criteria for success and pick the winners, just like breeders do.Mosaic evolution, preadaptation, and the evolution of evolvability in apes (bioRxiv). The author of this preprint, Caroline Parins-Fukuchi, is so drunk on Darwine she sees evolution itself evolving! Hers is not the only paper on “evolvability,” but she applies it to human beings. With this magic trick, evolutionists can speed up or slow down the magic act, allowing them to explain not only why traits evolved quickly in some cases, but also why they did not evolve in other cases. With this magic trick an evolutionist can explain everything – even opposite outcomes. Written in Jargonwocky, the trick sounds almost plausible, with dramatic effect.Shifts in modularity drove dramatic evolutionary changes across the ape body plan in two distinct ways: 1) an episode of relaxed integration early in hominoid evolution coincided with bursts in evolutionary rate across multiple character suites; 2) the formation of two new trait modules along the branch leading to chimps and humans preceded rapid and dramatic evolutionary shifts in the carpus and pelvis. Changes to the structure of evolutionary mosaicism may correspond to enhanced evolvability that has a ‘preadaptive’ effect by catalyzing later episodes of dramatic morphological remodeling.Notice that “evolvability” acts like movable axes on a graph. When traits in fossils appear abruptly, the evolutionist can move the axes close together to call it a “burst.” When traits are static, the evolutionist can move the axes apart and call it “relaxed integration.” Evolution is the constant; the rate is the variable, yielding a warped image of nature, not unlike a fun-house mirror.The use of passive voice is another trick that obscures the sleight-of-mind magic going on. “The formation of two new trait modules” is supposed to mean, “Evolution invented two traits by chance that it knew would be useful later.” The phrase “later episodes of dramatic morphological remodeling” is supposed to mean, “Evolution dramatically remodeled the bodies of apes on their march to humanity.” Evolution is so clever, it can “preadapt” traits to speed up evolution. Is that “dramatic,” or what?There are so many examples of this form of cheating by evolutionists in the media (i.e., treating “evolution” as an all-purpose magic wand), we’ll have to continue this topic with more examples. For now, understand the point: none of these papers even attempt to show what actual genetic mutations occurred, how many of them were required, and how a blind process (not a “selector” by any meaning of the word) could even care what happened. After you laugh, get mad. This nonsense is the only tolerable narrative allowed in public education in most societies around the world today. And why? Well, D.M.S. said it best in 1929 after the Scopes Trial, “Evolution [is] a theory universally accepted not because it can be proven by logically coherent evidence to be true, but because the only alternative, special creation, is clearly incredible.” Evolution is their god, and Darwin is the high priest who brought the knowledge of their god to the peasants. Anyone coming into the tribe with a different Creator must be Expelled!last_img read more

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Mechanical and Electrical Systems at the Orchards at Orenco Project

first_img RELATED ARTICLES Meeting the Airtightness ChallengeRoofing and Cladding for the Orenco PassivhausWalls and Windows for the Orenco PassivhausPlacing a Concrete Foundation on Rigid Foam InsulationThe Largest Passivhaus Building in the U.S.Multifamily Passivhaus Project Starts in Oregon While an ultra-high performance enclosure lies at the heart of the Passive House concept, the mechanical systems constitute the “yang” to the enclosure “yin.” The HVAC system, water heating, lighting, appliances, and conveying systems all contribute to the building’s high level of performance.Because the Orchards at Orenco project is a large multiunit residential building, these systems and components are in many ways quite different from those one would see in single-family residences designed to meet the Passive House standard. Part 1 in this blog series introduced the basic pieces of the mechanical system design at Orchards. This post will provide more information about the design and discuss some of the challenges encountered during construction and commissioning of the system. This is Part 6 of a blog series describing construction of the Orchards at Orenco project in Oregon. The first installment was titled The Largest Passivhaus Building in the U.S. A forthcoming blog will discuss the key lessons learned at the Orchards at Orenco project, and will report measured performance data from the first year of operation of the building. A hybrid approach: HVAC “pods”After reviewing the respective pros and cons of centralized vs. unitized mechanical systems, the team ultimately decided to utilize a hybrid approach, optimizing the mechanical design to capture the best qualities of those two different approaches. VentilationEach penthouse has a different size ERV, rated at 1,500 to 3,500 cfm, based on the flow rate and volume of the building zone served (see Image #4, below).The ERVs are manufactured by the Loren Cook Company. Initially the team had specified Zehnder and UltimateAir units since they were the only available units identified that met the ventilation efficiency requirement of the Passive House standard. Midway through design, however, the team identified the Cook units as potential candidates. Several months of back and forth with the PHIUS technical committee resulted in acceptance of the Cook units for our project.These units have a heat-recovery efficiency that ranges from 73% to 76%. The Cook units were considerably less expensive that the UltimateAir units which had been previously specified, and the savings allowed the owner to afford other valuable features on the project, such as the “green screen” I will discuss later.Distribution of the ventilation air from the ERVs is via 4-inch hard ducts running directly to and from each apartment. These duct “home runs” are collected into main trunk lines running above the ceiling at the third floor corridor (see Image #5, below). By keeping the duct penetrations no larger than 4 inches in diameter, this approach eliminates the need for fire-smoke dampers at each apartment (see Image #6, below).A continuous 50 cfm of supply air is delivered to each bedroom, with continuous exhaust from each bathroom and kitchen area. To filter cooking pollutants, recirculating hoods are provided above the kitchen ranges. Continuous air flow regulators installed within the ducts help to ensure balanced continuous airflow into and out of each apartment. While the mechanical design uses a centralized water heating system, a decentralized “pod” system is used to provide ventilation air as well as space heating and cooling. The project has three mechanical penthouses (see Image #2, below), each of which houses a large energy-recovery ventilator (ERV) with a heat pump condenser coil in the the supply air duct to temper the ventilation air. Each pod serves a zone of 10 to 24 apartments and adjacent common areas (see Image #3, below).The “pod” approach optimizes cost and performance while also reducing future maintenance. Regular maintenance of 57 individual ERVs would have been required if a fully unitized approach were used. Going with the pod approach allowed the use of smaller ERVs as well as shorter duct runs than would have been required with a centralized approach. Ducts were smaller, reducing system costs while also reducing distribution losses.The mechanical penthouses are built on top of the roof and accessed through large ceiling hatches at the third-floor corridors. The walls and roof of each penthouse have the same level of insulation and airtightness as the main walls and roof of the building, so the penthouses are functionally within the Passive House enclosure.center_img Water heatingTwo central boilers (Bradford White eF Series boilers with 100-gallon tanks and 98.5% thermal efficiency) provide hot water to the building. These are housed in a first-floor mechanical room near the center of the building.Over the course of multiple design iterations, the team determined that a temperature maintenance system with heat trace tape was likely to be more energy-efficient than a recirculation pump. Hot water piping to the apartments is insulated to minimize distribution heat losses (see Image #9, below). High efficiency plumbing fixtures are used at the apartments to minimize the water heating load and further improve system efficiency. Green screenThe building has an information screen mounted prominently in the main lobby (see Image #11). This screen provides news that is important to the residents, while also indicating the energy use of the overall building and the electrical usage in each apartment (see Image #12). Intended as a tool for educating the residents about their energy usage, the green screen also fosters a fair degree of social interaction. Mike Steffen is a builder, architect, and educator committed to making better buildings. He is vice president and general manager of Walsh Construction Company in Portland, Oregon. Other active systems and componentsHigh-efficiency lighting is used throughout the building to minimize the electrical load. Pinned fluorescent lighting was designed to meet a target of 0.4 Watts/square foot at the apartments. LED lighting is provided in the common areas, with lighting controls used at the corridors and stairs to further reduce loads.Upper tier Energy Star appliances were specified for the apartments (see Image #10, below). Appliance selections were made to achieve the best balance of cost and performance as well as accessibility requirements (some of which can significantly limit the number of models to choose from).Only two stairs are needed in the building to meet code egress requirements (one near each end); however, the Orchards design includes a third stairway, adjacent to the main lobby. This richly detailed stairway is intended to encourage residents to access their apartments on foot rather than using the elevator, enhancing resident health and interaction while reducing energy use even further.A MLR traction elevator is used in lieu of a hydraulic model (the type of elevator that is typically used at a building of this size). This choice, combined with the provision of the “attractive” stairway, is expected to reduce elevator-related electricity usage by 57%. Heating and coolingAt each penthouse, a Samsung AM024 VRF heat pump coil is placed inline on the supply air distribution line. This air-source heat pump has a COP of 4.31 and provides approximately 80% of the heating for the building, as well as some cooling during the summer, though it does not meet the entire cooling load. The heat pump is in parallel with the ERV so that it does not create static pressure in the ventilation system.About 80% of the heating load is met with the ventilation air. Electric-resistance cove heaters in the apartments are designed to meet the remaining heating load (see Image #7, below). These heaters are expected to operate only on the coldest of days, or in some apartments not at all. The team has metered eight of these heaters to provide verification of our assumptions.The Pacific Northwest summer is relatively cool and dry compared to much of North America, and air conditioning is usually not provided in new multifamily buildings in Oregon and Washington. Though the HVAC system at Orchards does not provide full air conditioning, the ventilation air does provide some degree of cooling.The 50 cfm requirement for supply air at the bedrooms is intended to provide additional airflow to temper the apartments during the summer months. The system includes heat-recovery bypass with an economizer to assist with night-flush cooling. The residents are instructed to close their windows in the morning, keep them closed during the day, and open them again in the evening. This helps minimize heat flow to the interior during the day during warmer periods and further assists with night-flush ventilation. Upon initial occupancy of the building, this was not well understood, but after a few hot spells, nearly all of the residents have learned the protocol.It should be noted here that two key elements of the basic building design, the balconies and the eyebrows, serve an essential shading function to keep the apartments cooler during the warmer months (see Image #8, below). Low-solar-heat-gain glazing is used at the east- and west-facing windows (LoE 366/180, argon-filled units, SHGC = 0.25) to further control against overheating.last_img read more

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The Editing Genius of Michael Kahn

first_imgMichael Kahn is one of the most successful film editors in the business. Here’s an in-depth look at his legendary career.Top Image: Steven Spielberg and Michael Kahn via Empire MagazineThe most interesting thing about legendary editor Michael Kahn isn’t that he started by editing Hogan’s Heroes, or that he became Steven Spielberg‘s go-to editor. No, the most interesting thing about Kahn is that he never really wanted to be an editor in the first place.He began his journey working in a New York mailroom and slowly moved up the ladder to become an apprentice. He advanced to assistant editor and finally head editor of the classic television series Hogan’s Heroes. From there his career shot off like a rocket.Let’s take a detailed look at his classic career, one that made Edgar Wright say:We were shown a montage of Michael Kahn’s credits. It was possibly the most epic, daunting and yet inspiring body of work I’ve seen at any awards show, technical or otherwise.The ApprenticeKahn began his career producing commercials for a New York ad agency, but soon found himself working in post-production after being offered a job at Desilu. The production company was owned and operated by the legendary television duo Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball, but Kahn found himself being essentially the “male secretary” for editorial supervisor Dann Cahn. He became Cahn’s apprentice and was soon urged by John Woodcock to join the union.By joining Woodcock, the young Kahn would begin working on his very first television show, The Adventures of Jim Bowie. Kahn would say, “It was a wonderful time to be in the editing business because we had fourteen or sixteen shows on the air. Some were comedies and some were dramas.” Kahn would learn valuable lessons at this stage of his career, lessons such as discovering how to manipulate the film to do what he wanted it to.Video from WesternsTvCutting for TelevisionBy the 1960s, Kahn moved up from an apprentice to assistant editor and began working toward the ‘8 Year Rule.’ This was an old rule that editors followed that dictated they had to work professionally as an assistant editor for eight years before they could edit a film or television show as the main editor.A friend of mine, Jerry London, got a chance to work on Hogan’s Heroes; he did the pilot. He said, ‘If you come with me as my assistant, after the fifth or sixth show I’ll make you the editor.Jerry London was true to his word. Michael spent the next six years of his career editing over 130 episodes of the classic comedy series.Video from Manhattan Edit WorkshopFrom the success of Hogan’s Heroes, Kahn was able to garner attention which led to his move from television editing to film editing. His first film was a drama called Rage, directed by Oscar-winner George C. Scott. Kahn would utilize the techniques he learned as an apprentice (such as the use of slower cuts) to impress Scott so much that he requested to work with Kahn again on his next film The Savage is Loose. This extended collaboration would garner Kahn editing jobs on films like The Devil’s Rain, The Ultimate Warrior and The Return of a Man Called Horse.Directors started saying ‘hey, that’s an interesting idea, I didn’t think of that.’ And that sort of encouraged me on, then I tried other things – I kept trying things. And directors seemed to appreciate it – Michael Kahn, Editors GuildClose Encounters with GreatnessBy 1977, Michael Kahn was already having great success in the film industry when a young director named Steven Spielberg, fresh off the success of Jaws, came looking for an editor to cut together his sci-fi epic Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Kahn once remarked that cutting his teeth in the fast-paced environment of television set him up perfectly to work with Spielberg, who works quickly and captures a wide range of coverage.Video from Manhattan Edit WorkshopThe result of this collaboration would be multiple Oscar nominations for the film and Kahn’s very first nomination for film editing — an award that he would lose to Paul Hirsch, Marcia Lucas and Richard Chew for Star Wars.Kahn quickly picked up more work during Spielberg’s down time, editing Eyes of Laura Mars for Irvin Kershner and Ice Castles for Donald Wrye. After these two films, Kahn would see a string of hit films come to him from Steven Spielberg, as well various other directors like Robert Zemeckis, Richard Donner, Frank Marshall, and Tobe Hooper.In 1981, Kahn would score big with his editing work on Steven Spielberg’s legendary film Raiders of the Lost Ark. He would follow this win with Oscar nominations for Fatal Attraction and Empire of the Sun.Part of the Oscar EliteAfter editing some of the most revered films of the 1980s, like Poltergeist, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, The Goonies and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Kahn would have an amazing run over the next ten years. Starting with 1991’s Hook, directed by Steven Spielberg, Kahn would edit Jurassic Park, Twister, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, and The Haunting.Video from Manhattan Edit WorkshopKahn edited two films during this era that would give him legendary status within the editing community: 1993’s Schindler’s List and 1998’s Saving Private Ryan. Because of his ability to effectively craft a story and master the techniques of editing, Kahn would be awarded two more Oscars for both films. In the video below, Kahn talks about the process of editing the opening scene from Saving Private Ryan.Video from Manhattan Edit WorkshopFrom 2000 to 2010, Kahn wouldn’t slow down at all, editing Catch Me if You Can, Peter Pan, War of the Worlds, The Adventures of Tintin, War Horse, Munich and Lincoln. He earned Oscar nominations for the latter two films.Since 2011, Kahn has stopped editing films for filmmakers other than Spielberg, who calls Kahn his big brother. In an article from Flickering Myth, Kahn had this to say about working with some directors:Some directors don’t like you to edit until they are ready to run it with you; then what you have to say is minimal because he tells you what he wants and you sit there and type out the visuals. But that’s not editing… I want to make a contribution to the film.So far in his career, Michael has been nominated for eight Oscars, the most of any editor. His three wins tie him with other legendary editors like Thelma Schoonmaker, Daniel Mandell, and Ralph Dawson.The Editing Style of a Master CraftsmanMichael Kahn recently completed editing Bridge of Spies. He’s also slated to edit BFG and Indiana Jones 5. But his long list of credits isn’t what makes Michael Kahn so great. It’s his attention to the creative process of editing. It’s his incredible ability to know when and why you need a cut or a transition and how to blend the scenes together that made him a legend.Video from Manhattan Edit WorkshopKahn also purposefully never goes to the set to watch the production. He’s often said that he wants the film to come to him fresh without any preconceived ideas. He told Cinema Editor Magazine that he doesn’t edit the way he does because he went to school. He says it was the years working as an apprentice and assistant editor that taught him how to be a real editor.It’s not about knowledge; it’s all about feeling or intuition. Good editors or musicians or directors—what makes them special is that they feel things… Your feeling is what you’re getting paid for. It’s your ability to cinematically touch things.Get a deeper look into this master editor’s career straight from the source in this great one-on-one interview with DP/30.Video from DP/30: The Oral History Of HollywoodWhat are your thoughts on the career of Michael Kahn? What artist would you like us to spotlight next? Sound off in the comments below.last_img read more

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