Sep 9
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Australian Parliament apologises to the Stolen Generations

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A motion has been passed in the Parliament of Australia to make a formal apology to the Stolen Generations. Thousands of people converged on Canberra, the capital city, to witness the event. Many Indigenous people set up camp on the lawns outside Old Parliament House at the site of the Tent Embassy which has been on the site since Australia Day 1972.

The front doors of Parliament House opened at 7:30 a.m. with many people queuing from before 7 a.m. to gain a place inside. With the House of Representatives public gallery packed, about a thousand people watched a live telecast of the event on screens that had been set up for the event in the Great Hall. A special area was set up at the front of the Hall for members of the Stolen Generation. Thousands of others watched outside Parliament House, gathering on the lawns of Federation Square. Some members of the crowds wore t-shirts with the word “Thanks” on the front. Many more people watched at venues across the country.

All living past Prime Ministers, with the exception of John Howard, were in the chamber to witness the apology.

The Prime Minister’s speech was received warmly by the crowds and received a long standing ovation at its conclusion. During the Opposition Leader’s speech, a majority of the audience in the Great Hall and Federation Square turned their backs.

There are more images in the photo gallery.

Contents

  • 1 The Apology
  • 2 Responses
  • 3 Live telecast
  • 4 Related news
  • 5 Sources
Sep 9
Maine, USA, Land Use Regulatory Commission approves reconstruction of camps on protected Allagash River
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Maine, USA, Land Use Regulatory Commission approves reconstruction of camps on protected Allagash River

Sunday, April 10, 2005 The Maine Land Use Regulatory Commission (LURC) affirmed on April 6 its previous finding that two cabins on the Allagash River in northern Maine would be permitted to be rebuilt, the Bangor Daily News reports. The commission’s initial decision had been appealed; with this decision, the appeal is rejected. The construction is contentious because the river has been protected by the state since 1966. According to the paper, the commission noted that the task of rebuilding the cabins had been listed in the 2003 River Driver’s Agreement. The only mention of the so-called Taylor camps in the 3-page agreement is as follows, under the heading “Creation of Historical/Cultural Visitor Center”: “Explore idea of Michaud Farm historic place, that could involve restoration of Taylor camps and historical demonstrations–canoe access only.”

According to the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands, the Taylor camps are three log cabins built in the 1930s by Henry and Alice Taylor. Mr. Taylor worked as the Allagash game warden. The Bangor Daily News noted that the other buildings in the area, such as the Michaud Farm, are not included in the permit that was granted this week.

Local resident Gary Pelletier began reconstructing the cabins in the summer of 2004, but was halted by the appeal of the permit granted by LURC, according to the Bangor Daily News. Now that the appeal has been rejected, Pelletier will resume work. Pelletier is quoted by the Bangor Daily News as saying “We’re going to gear up,” in reference to his preparations for the reconstruction, Allagash resident and town selectman Roy Gardner that there was an ice jam in the river that he estimated was “ten feet thick” earlier this week, according to an article on April 6 in the Daily News.

Sep 9
NASA says Phoenix spacecraft may have landed on ice
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NASA says Phoenix spacecraft may have landed on ice

Sunday, June 1, 2008

According to NASA, new images received from the Phoenix lander on Mars shows a possible layer of ice on its landing site. Scientists received the images on Friday May 30 from the craft’s robotic arm camera. The image was taken on the fifth Martian day, or Sol 5.

Scientists say that as Phoenix landed, the exhaust from its thrusters cleared away a three to four inch layer of Martian soil which exposed a flat layer of a white substance, that NASA says could be ice. The image shows the white layer which is shiny and smooth.

“It’s the consensus of all of us that we have found ice. We were expecting to find ice within two to six inches of the surface. The thrusters have excavated two to six inches and, sure enough, we see something that looks like ice. It’s not impossible that it’s something else, but our leading interpretation is ice,” said top Phoenix investigator at the University of Arizona in Tucson Peter Smith.

One exposed edge of the underlying material was seen in Sol 4 images, but the newer image reveals a greater extent of it. The abundance of excavated smooth and level surfaces adds evidence to a hypothesis that the underlying material is an ice table covered by a thin blanket of soil. Tests will be performed on the soil and surrounding area to determine exactly what the substance is.

“We could very well be seeing rock, or we could be seeing exposed ice in the retrorocket blast zone. We’ll test the two ideas by getting more data,” stated Ray Arvidson, one of the mission investigators.

Phoenix is searching for evidence of water and microbial life on Mars. Its mission is to determine Mars’s ability or inability to host life and hold water. The Phoenix lander uses a robotic arm to dig through the protective top soil layer to the alleged water ice below and ultimately bring both soil and water ice to the lander platform for sophisticated scientific analysis.

Sep 9
Over 100 people protest exclusion of gender identity protection in ENDA outside HRC dinner
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Over 100 people protest exclusion of gender identity protection in ENDA outside HRC dinner

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

More than 100 protesters gathered Saturday in San Francisco to object to the Human Rights Campaign‘s (HRC) stance on gender identity.

The protesters picketed the HRC’s annual fundraising dinner to protest the organization’s efforts to remove gender identity protections from legislation that would add sexual orientation to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA).

The group was clad in a variety of outfits, ranging from street clothing to drag to camp gear; some wore make-up or fake moustaches. Cross-dressers, gays, lesbians, transgender and gender inspecific individuals were in attendance. The group claimed a unified purpose: to express feeling betrayed by the HRC’s action, a move the protesters argued is opposed by over 350 local, statewide and national LGBT advocacy organizations.

The event quickly developed into more than ordinary civil disobedience. The “Left OUT Party: A Genderfal Gay-la” elicited a festive mode among individuals who oscillated between roles of protester and entertainer. At times, it was difficult to determine one from the other.

“Some may say that incrementalism is a smart and sound political strategy, but we don’t think that throwing the transgender community under the bus in the name of incrementalism [is] really what the LGBT community is all about,” explained Left OUT organizer Hunter Hargrave.

Some HRC dinner invitees smiled in acknowledgment of the protest, which handed out fliers supporting a united position on the ENDA and encouraging invitees of the $300 event to partake in the picketing.

The counter-party was organized by a coalition of queer progressive organizations, including Pride at Work, And Castro for All, the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club, the Trans March, the SF Labor Council, the Queer Youth Organizing Project and the Lou Sullivan Society/FTM International. Protesters were treated to speeches by San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera, who was honored by the Left OUT party as a local hero for his work in ending the ban on same-sex marriage in the California Courts, as well as City Supervisor Tom Ammiano.

Mila Ponder, host of transition issues podcast Trans-Ponder.com, said she found out about the event at San Francisco’s annual Gay Pride weekend in June, where supporters were handing out flyers. Other attendees had learned about the event through word-of-mouth or networking sites like Facebook.

In addition to Herrera, other honors were presented. “2008 Human Rights Heroes” included State Assemblyman Mark Leno, Police Commission President Theresa Sparks, National Center for Lesbian Rights Legal Director Shannon Miller, San Francisco Supervisor Bevan Duffy and San Francisco Labor Council Executive Director Tim Paulson.

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Sep 4
Antique Brass Drawer Pulls Make Your Cabinetry Look Modern!

Click Here To Find Out More About:

Antique Brass Drawer Pulls – Make Your Cabinetry Look Modern!

by

Al Hardy

Refurbishing your furniture can be done in a breeze with antique brass drawer pulls. Make your drawers, cabinets and dressers stand out by adding this type of fixture for a more interesting appeal.

Most homeowners look into the beauty of these drawer or cabinet pulls especially when their furniture pieces are a bit old and they want to return them to their former glory. Making this happen shouldn’t take all day especially when you know what kind of drawer pull you will be getting. If you want to know which ones are available, you should definitely shop around to get a better idea.

The antique brass finish is so popular that you will be able to find accessories to match your antique brass drawer pulls especially is you are looking to put them in the bathroom. For example, you will be able to find an antique brass towel bar, an antique lavatory faucet, and other antique brass bathroom fixtures.

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Also, you will be able to find a large selection of antique brass drawer pulls on the Internet. You can click on the links at the bottom of this article to find out where you can find the largest selection and where you can buy them at discount prices!

Antique brass drawer pulls are darker in shade compared to other pulls which make them blend well with different pieces of furniture. You can get one that comes with an antique design if you want to match it with your antique furniture or if you want a more modern design, they are available as well. The key to finding the right one is to spend some time checking out those that are available.

You will also see various styles for brass drawer knobs or pulls. There are those that make use of two screws when mounted while some only use one. Some styles even incorporate knobs in them for easy installation. Think about whether you will be opting for a vintage, traditional or modern look when buying this antique brass drawer pull.

Other styles that are worth looking into are those that come in solid or bold lines that are perfect for all kinds of furniture that you have in your house. You may want to consider getting antique brass drawer pulls that have intricate designs if you want to bring out the best in your furniture.

There is no need for you to throw away old furniture when you can make them come alive by adding antique brass drawer pulls in them. With this unique touch, you are sure to make a statement in your interior whether you will be placing your furniture in your living room, dining room, kitchen, bathroom or bedroom. You will certainly be pleased to see how appealing your home will be once you finish installing them.

With all the styles and kinds available, you will not be running out of options when it comes to buying antique brass drawer pulls. And with the cheap prices that they come with, you wouldn’t have to worry about spending too much in making your home more beautiful.

Most local home improvement or hardware stores do not have a large selection of antique brass drawer pulls. The best place to find the largest selection is on the Internet. Not only will you find the largest selection but you will be able to find them at discount prices!

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Article Source:

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Sep 4
British TV presenter Rico Daniels tells Wikinews about being ‘The Salvager’
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British TV presenter Rico Daniels tells Wikinews about being ‘The Salvager’

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Rico Daniels is a British TV presenter living in France who is known for his two television series — The Salvager — whilst he still lived in the UK and then Le Salvager after he moved to France. Rico has been in a variety of jobs but his passion is now his profession – he turns unwanted ‘junk’ into unusual pieces of furniture. Rico’s creations and the methods used to fabricate them are the subject of the Salvager shows.

Rico spoke to Wikinews in January about his inspiration and early life, future plans, other hobbies and more. Read on for the full exclusive interview, published for the first time:

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Sep 3
Wikinews interviews Florence Devouard, chair of the Wikimedia Foundation
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Wikinews interviews Florence Devouard, chair of the Wikimedia Foundation

Monday, December 18, 2006

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Florence Devouard has been a contributor to the French Wikipedia since 2002. In October, 2006, she was nominated to be the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation, which manages and hosts several popular wikis, including Wikipedia, a multilingual, collaboratively-written, free encyclopedia. She is also a member of the Wikimedia Foundation’s Communications Committee, and is one of four community representatives to the board[1].

Wikinews: What were you thinking when Jimmy nominated you to become the new Chair?

Florence Devouard: It was not really a surprise. It had been discussed already for a while, so I had time to collect my thoughts already as to what I intended to do as a chair, thoughts I gave on the Foundation mailing list a few days later. When Jimbo nominated me chair, my thoughts were mostly oriented toward the desire that the change happens smoothly, with no wrong perception of the community or in the press. The fact I became chair is first the sign the organisation is maturing.

This said, it is *difficult* to become the chair after Jimbo. Not internally, as all board members were in agreement and happy with the switch. Jimbo is also very helpful. The main difficulty is rather due to the perception from outside parties that Jimbo still is the chair, or if they are informed he is no more, with their belief he is still in charge anyway. It will take time 🙂

WN: What do you consider your greatest achievement on the Wikimedia projects themselves?

FD: Very difficult to say. I was probably an average editor on the French and English wikipedia. My achievement is probably rather in my involvement in community building. When I joined Wikipedia, the project was essentially monolingual, and it took a lot of dedication to really make it multilingual, with recognition of the importance of cultural diversity. As an admin on several projects, steward for over 3 years now, meta-oriented person, I was hopefully one of these “glue people” who helped to develop the global side of our projects.

WN: When did you first join the Wikimedia projects?

FD: February 2002 as an anonymous on the English wikipedia. I later created my pseudonyme, Anthere, and joined the embryo of French community (less than 10 people) in may 2002.

WN: What is your view on the annual ‘pranking’ of Wikipedia on April 1st?

FD: I… never participated to the annual pranking of the English Wikipedia on April 1st? However, I was more than once the author of “jokes” which were sometimes appreciated, sometimes not so much appreciated…. I especially loved changing the logo. I created false articles. And did some moves I will not publicly revealed as not so proud of them. But overall, I like fun; the fun may stay within reasonable limits of course, and April joke did not always…

WN: Wikimedia Commons recently reached 1 million files. What is your impression of this?

FD: Fabulous job ! I receive more and more phone calls of people willing to use an image from the Commons, which is for me a good measure of this site success. On another note, this project is specifically dear to my heart, because it is one where all languages mix. It is the true Babel Tower (which Wikipedia is not), where people work together, sometimes not sharing even one language. The current state is fabulous. And there is much left to do.

WN: If you could describe yourself in one word, what would it be, and why?

FD: I often sign “ant”, mostly because of a wiki I participated to several years ago, where providing a real name was mandatory; I cheated, and called myself AntHere. The ant is a social insect. The ant is very industrious. The ant is never alone, it dies if alone. The ant lives with others in an anthill. And the head of the anthill is a Queen 🙂 (the Queen essentially being a mother actually).

So, Anthere or AntHere is just THE word.

WN: Considering past donations, and the rate we are going at now, do you think we will meet our goal by the deadiline of our current fundraiser?

FD: That is a very good question. I do not know. I can only hope, because the more money we’ll make, the more we’ll be able to make the suitable investments for the future of the projects. According to our Executive Director, Brad Patrick, our basic operations right now, cost around 75 000 dollars per month. This does not count the investments in hardware, which should be around $1,670,000 before June, nor the additional costs in terms of hosting, and bandwidth, due to the ever growing traffic. Add to this the much delayed need to hire more staff and project specific expenses. An insufficient fundraiser at this point would mean we’ll have to organise a new one in the next few months; However, we are currently exploring other ways to collect money, now possible thanks to the completed audit. So let’s be optimistic.

WN: Wikinews gives people credentials (excuse my spelling) which allow us to report in the field. I, myself am not accredited, but what’s your view on this?

FD: I understood this was extremely helpful to approach candidates for interviews and participate to special events. I trust the Wikinews community to be careful in giving these credentials.

WN: If you were explaining Wikipedia to someone who has never heard of Wikipedia (I know, impossible), what would you say?

FD: In the shortest way, an encyclopedia, which aims to bring knowledge to the largest number of people on Earth. Which means 1) lower the financial barrier to access (it’s free of charge), 2) lower the linguistic barrier (we work in over 200 languages), 3) lower the barrier of use (it is under a free licence which allow anyone to reuse the content). On top, an oddity, it is a collective work, with open access and multiauthoring.

This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.
  1. Jump up ? She and Erik Moeller were both elected Member Representatives according to the foundation bylaws at the time. In December 2006, the bylaws were amended and the Board was expanded by two seats. Those two seats will be filled by elected community representatives in elections next summer; the interim appointments to those seats are Oscar van Dillen and Kat Walsh.

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Sep 3
Economic And Practical Advantages Of Steel Buildings

By Adriana Notton

For commercial and industrial structures, steel has been used for many years. Over the past few years, however, it has become increasingly popular to construct taller buildings using this metal as well. This has been taking place all over the world. This ultimately is because the advantages of steel buildings are becoming clearer and better known.

Ever since the 1700s, iron has been used for columns within the walls of different structures. Over time, the use of iron became more frequent. In the mid 1800s, steel was created. Since then, it has been used in many types of construction, including bridges and pipes. One reason it has been popular in these areas is that it becomes more economically and environmentally viable to use. This is due to the fact that most of what this metal has replaced was originally done by wood.

From a financial standpoint, structures made in this way may be constructed more quickly than others. This makes it more cost-effective to use this, rather than a different material. This material is also easier to maintain than others. The risk of fire is lower, which in turn makes the insurance costs less.

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In residential houses, it may be more expensive to build in this way than with other materials. It is still a popular option, however, because the lower maintenance and the fact that they are more efficient in terms of energy can potentially be of more benefit in the long term.

The actual metal can also cost less because it could be designed prior to building. This allows the designers to perfectly shape it more precisely and more efficiently. This has also led to it being used more frequently simply because of the advantages of its design and precision.

More practically, structures made in this way are lighter in weight than those made from traditional materials. Components using this metal might be up to 50% lighter than wood. The metal used is also recycled from scrap, which makes their use more environmentally friendly as well. In addition, the very strength of the structures built from this material makes it very beneficial. In fact, these building have one of the highest ratios of weight to strength of all building materials. They are not only immune to insect and rot problems, but they can even withstand hazardous weather condition, such as hurricanes.

In comparison to some other building materials, steel will not warp over time nor will pieces of it twist or splinter. The strength it offers also means that less of the metal is required for support than other materials. This is another way in which the costs of building with it can be reduced.

Some people favor the very modern appearance of these structures, while others find it too austere. This does not need to present a problem, however, because other building materials can be used to cover the metal if necessary. This will allow for the advantages of steel buildings, while still maintaining the appearance of traditional ones.

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Sep 3
Market maker Bernard L. Madoff arrested in $50B ‘giant Ponzi scheme’
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Market maker Bernard L. Madoff arrested in $50B ‘giant Ponzi scheme’
 Correction — January 10, 2009 This article incorrectly states that Mr Madoff attended Hofstra University Law School. His education was actually with Hofstra College, which he graduated from in 1960. 

Friday, December 12, 2008

Top broker and Wall Street adviser Bernard L. Madoff, aged 70, was arrested and charged by the FBI on Thursday with a single count of securities fraud, also known as stock fraud and investment fraud. He allegedly told senior employees of his firm on Wednesday that his $50 billion business “is all just one big lie” and that it was “basically, a giant Ponzi scheme (since at least 2005).” Mr. Madoff faces up to 20 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $5 million. FBI agent Theodore Cacioppi said Mr. Madoff’s investment advisory business had “deceived investors by operating a securities business in which he traded and lost investor money, and then paid certain investors purported returns on investment with the principal received from other, different investors, which resulted in investors’ losses of approximately $50 billion dollars.”

The former chairman of the Nasdaq Stock Market is also the founder and primary owner of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC, the closely-held market-making firm he launched in 1960. The firm is one of the top market maker firms on Wall Street. He founded his family firm with an initial investment of $5,000, after attending Hofstra University Law School. He saved the money earned from a job lifeguarding at Rockaway Beach in Queens and a part time job installing underground sprinkler systems.

A force in Wall Street trading for nearly 50 years, he has been active in the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), a self-regulatory organization for the U.S. securities industry. His firm was one of the five most active firms in the development of the NASDAQ, having been known for “paying for order flow,” in other word paying a broker to execute a customer’s order through Madoff. He argued that the payment to the broker did not alter the price that the customer received. He ran the investment advisory as a secretive business, however.

Dan Horwitz, counsel of Mr. Madoff, in an interview, said that “he is a longstanding leader in the financial-services industry with an unblemished record; he is a person of integrity; he intends to fight to get through this unfortunate event.” Mr. Madoff was released on his own recognizance on the same day of his arrest, after his 2 sons turned him in, and posting $10 million bail secured by his Manhattan apartment. Without entering any plea, the Court set the preliminary hearing for January 12.

Madoff’s hedge fund scheme may rank among the biggest fraud in history. When former energy trading giant Enron filed for bankruptcy in 2001, one of the largest at the time, it had $63.4 billion in assets. The scheme would dwarf past Ponzis, and it would further be nearly five times the telecommunication company WorldCom fraud and bankruptcy proceedings in 2002.

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a separate civil suit on Thursday against Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities and its eponymous founder Mr. Madoff. It was docketed as “U.S. v. Madoff,” 08-MAG-02735, by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (Manhattan). SEC, New York associate director of enforcement, Andrew M. Calamari, asked the judge to issue seizure orders on the firm and its assets, and appoint a receiver. The SEC pleads, among others, that “it was an ongoing $50 billion swindle; our complaint alleges a stunning fraud that appears to be of epic proportions.” It further accused the defendant of “paying returns to certain investors out of the principal received from other, different investors” for years. Madoff’s hedge fund business had previously claimed to have served between 11 and 25 clients and had $17.1 billion in assets under management. But virtually all of the assets were missing.

United States District Court for the Southern District of New York Louis L. Stanton on Thursday appointed Lee Richards, a Manhattan lawyer, as the firm’s receiver. A hearing is set for Friday, for a ruling on the SEC’s petition to grant plenary powers to the receiver over the entire firm, and an absolute asset sequestration.

Doug Kass, president of hedge fund Seabreeze Partners Management said that “this is a major blow to confidence that is already shattered — anyone on the fence will probably try to take their money out.”

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Sep 3
U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter to retire
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U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter to retire

Friday, May 1, 2009

United States President Barack Obama will get the chance to make his first United States Supreme Court appointment as a number of unnamed sources close to Associate Justice David Souter announced the Justice’s retirement from the body, to take place in June.

NPR suggests that Souter was waiting to confirm that colleagues John Paul Stevens, now 89, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who has cancer, were not retiring in the coming year before making his decision; the earliest public indication of his retirement was the April 29th discovery by the Associated Press that unlike the eight other Justices, Souter had not hired a staff for the upcoming session of the Supreme Court, which begins in October.

A spokesperson for the Justice said that Souter had no comments on the reports of his retirement.

Souter, currently 69, retires from the court as the sixth-oldest justice, but his departure is unlikely to change the court’s ideological balance. While appointed by Republican President George H. W. Bush in 1990, Souter has consistently voted as a member of the court’s center-left bloc and a liberal nomination by Obama would likely be confirmed by a majority in the United States Senate.

The Supreme Court is the highest judicial body in the United States; its decisions on the interpretation of the Constitution can be overridden only by a constitutional amendment.

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