The Cannabis Industry Must Keep Alive the Legacy of LGBT Activists

first_img Keep up with the latest trends and news in the cannabis industry with our free articles and videos, plus subscribe to the digital edition of Green Entrepreneur magazine. Peter Gigante Caring for the neediest AIDS patients during the worst years of the epidemic began the struggle for legal cannabis but legalization has put those programs in jeopardy. June 29, 2019 Add to Queue Medical Marijuana  The cannabis legalization and LGBTQ+ movements have historically been linked together in their fight to end stigma and attain legal recognition and acceptance. In fact, the fight for legal cannabis originated with the response of the LGBTQ community to the AIDS crisis. As San Francisco celebrates Pride this weekend, now is the time to examine this long relationship rooted in compassion and how legal cannabis has left behind the most vulnerable. Related: FDA Begins Evaluating Cannabis ScientificallyTwo movements connected.By the early 1990’s, life-saving drugs were available to treat HIV, but with the horrible side effects of pain, nausea and appetite loss. Cannabis was a lifeline for many who suffered,  easing their symptoms and dramatically improving their quality of life. The need for reliable, affordable access to cannabis was clear. Compassionate activists responded by opening underground dispensaries to meet the needs of the community. The San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club, believed to be America’s first public dispensary, offered patients access to cannabis and a support system. Patients suffering a terribly stigmatized, life threatening disease found a safe haven to spend time with one another and receive relief from their pain. No patients were ever turned away, regardless if they could not afford to pay.An early pioneer providing free medicine for AIDS patients was Mary Jane Rathbun, known as “Brownie Mary” for the cannabis brownies she famously handed out in the AIDS ward of San Francisco General Hospital. “Compassionate Care” programs that provide donated cannabis products to low-income medical patients have been the soul of the movement for legal cannabis since the beginning. This dedication to patient access fueled the passage of Proposition 215 in 1996 that legalized medical cannabis in California. Devotion to suffering, low income patients is the foundation on which our entire industry is built, yet full legalization in California has put compassionate care programs at dire risk.Related: How Industrial-Scale Extraction Will Make CBD Accessible to Everyone Who Needs ItCompassionate Care is imperiled. In January 2018, Prop 64 went into effect, making cannabis legal for all adults in California over the age of 21. It was a major moment for the cannabis community which ushered in a new era of normalization and access. But an unintended consequence of Prop 64 has made it nearly impossible for Compassionate Care programs to provide free medical access to cannabis for those in the most need with the least means. All donated product — even to impoverished patients who are seriously ill — are now subject to high taxes. This makes Compassionate Care programs financially impossible for businesses and nonprofits. Many programs, like Jetty Extracts’ Shelter Project, that have successfully connected patients with donated cannabis have closed or been severely limited as a result.Related: Cannabis Companies Embrace Pride MonthLooking forward.It is a sad irony that by de-stigmatizing and legalizing cannabis, we have hurt the very people who were the community’s first champions. The cannabis community is coming together to correct this oversight. Efforts are underway but they are not happening fast enough. State Senator Scott Weiner of San Francisco has introduced Senate Bill 34, The Dennis Peron and Brownie Mary Compassionate Care Act, to make donating cannabis to low income patients financially viable, but it’s been a year-and-a-half since Prop 64 went into effect. Low income patients have not had compassionate access to free, legal cannabis since. Every day that goes by without passage of the bill is another day where sick or dying patients suffer in needless pain.This Pride, we recognize and celebrate the leadership of people like Senior Scott Weiner who are calling on the California Legislature to pass this bill and reinstate a framework that allows compassionate care programs to do their essential work. The LGBT community, particularly those affected by HIV/AIDS, fought for a legal cannabis industry and we, in turn, need to fight for them. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. The Cannabis Industry Must Keep Alive the Legacy of LGBT Activists Guest Writer Next Article –shares Free Green Entrepreneur App Image credit: Charlotte Pierrat/EyeEm | Getty Images Download Our Free Android App Head of Policy Research at Eaze 4 min readlast_img read more

Walmart Is Opening its Own Tech Incubator in Silicon Valley

first_img 2 min read Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals This story originally appeared on Engadget Like Target and Amazon, Walmart is trying to figure out what the future of retail looks like. The company already bought startups such as Jet.com and clothing store ModCloth to better compete online, but Walmart’s next move will invest some of its sizable coffers directly in the next generation of retail technology startups through its own tech incubator.According to Jet.com founder Marc Lore — now CEO of Walmart’s ecommerce division — the group will be called “Store No. 8” and will focus on investing in companies that cover all the buzzwords from virtual and augmented reality, to machine learning, robotics and artificial intelligence.As Bloomberg reports, the new tech incubator was named after a shop in Arkansas where Sam Walton used to experiment with store layouts and will be based in (where else) Silicon Valley. While Lore didn’t reveal how much Walmart would be investing in the project, Store No. 8 will be headed up by Walmart SVP of Digital Store operations Seth Beal and VP of Incubation Katie Finnegan, who also came from Jet.com.While the companies at Store No. 8 will operate independently of Walmart corporate and its research company @WalmartLabs in San Francisco, the end goal here is to create new tech that will help Walmart’s bottom line — whether that be through new online boutiques like ModCloth or new ways to skip the checkout lines in the store. Plus, when your competition is riding robots and planning a delivery service for the moon, the only smart move is to respond by opening a tech incubator. March 21, 2017 Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Andrew Dalton Next Article The retail giant wants to get a foothold in emerging technologies. Add to Queue Walmart Image credit: Niloo | Shutterstock.com Walmart Is Opening its Own Tech Incubator in Silicon Valley –shares Register Now »last_img read more

Pernod Ricard unveils refreshed look for Jameson Irish Whiskey

first_imgPernod Ricard unveils refreshed look for Jameson Irish WhiskeyPosted By: Contributoron: January 11, 2019In: Alcohol, Beverage, Industries, PackagingPrintEmailPernod Ricard-owned Irish Distillers has unveiled a new Jameson Irish Whiskey bottle to highlight the brand’s provenance and triple-distillation production.Created by Stockholm’s Pond Design agency, the design aims to create stand-out appeal and drive differentiation in the Irish whiskey category.The bottle shape now features a tapered body and a more generous shoulder curve, while a distinctive embossed label ‘eyebrow’ and heel at the base make the bottle more tactile and memorable to hold.An easy-to-pour neck and green glass bottle remain in place, in line with feedback from market research among bartenders and Irish whiskey drinkers.A refreshed label is printed on textured paper and reinterprets key elements of the design – most notably the Jameson family crest – while still retaining the most recognisable features.The update is underpinned by a more vibrant colour palette, including a brighter red cap and fresher greens and creams on the label.The bottle is constructed using pressure sensitive label technology at Irish Distillers’ Fox and Geese bottling facility in Dublin – which is said to be a more efficient process that allows for split labels to be applied to the glass bottles.Simon Fay, international marketing director for Jameson at Irish Distillers, said: “Jameson Irish Whiskey is the world’s favourite Irish whiskey and is leading the renaissance within the category that we have seen over the past ten years.“As such, we are committed to investing in the brand and we are confident that our new smooth pack, with the same triple distilled Irish whiskey inside is the winning combination to drive distinctiveness and relevance with whiskey drinkers and bartenders.“With 29 years of consecutive growth, our mission is to maintain momentum in key markets and accelerate growth and we believe that the subtle design evolution will help us to share the fearless spirit of Jameson with even more people around the world and continue the success story for many years to come.”The new Jameson Irish Whiskey bottles will be available in Ireland from January 2019, and in the US and other markets from March. New bottles will be introduced across Jameson Caskmates, Jameson Black Barrel and Jameson Crested throughout the year.Last year, Irish Distillers announced an investment of over €150 million at its sites in Cork and Dublin to meet a continued rise in demand for Irish whiskey. The business was bought by Pernod Ricard in 1988.Share with your network: Tags: IrelandIrish DistillersJamesonPernod Ricardwhiskylast_img read more

Cusa Tea secures funding to boost new product development

first_imgCusa Tea secures funding to boost new product developmentPosted By: Jules Scullyon: June 03, 2019In: Beverage, Business, Functional, Industries, Mergers & Acquisitions, Tea & CoffeePrintEmailUS organic tea company Cusa Tea has completed a $2.5 million Series A round of financing as now aims to expand distribution and product development.Break Trail Ventures and S Cap led the investment round, with participation from existing and new investors, including Organic X Labs, Smart Capital and Service Provider’s Capital. Jay Hirsch of Break Trail Ventures and James Cali of S Cap will join Cusa Tea’s Board of Directors.The investment brings the instant tea maker’s total funding since launching to $3.6 million.Based in Boulder, Colorado, Cusa Tea uses organic teas with real fruits and spices, which are then cold-steeped using the firm’s technology. Current flavours include organic English breakfast, organic green tea, organic oolong, mango green, lemon black, chai, and peach green.“Cusa Tea is innovating in a huge, but stagnant category,” said Jim Lamancusa, founder and CEO of Cusa Tea. “The tea category hasn’t seen anything new for a very long time. With our patented cold-brew, evaporative dehydration process, we can deliver a premium cup of tea in seconds with any temperature of water, anywhere, all without sugar or artificial flavourings. We only use organic tea and real fruit and spices.“Retailers love the fact that we’re bringing something new to the tea aisle and allowing tea drinkers to make premium tea wherever they go, without the need for hot water, steeping a tea bag and then finding somewhere to dispose of the wet, soggy bag.”Current Cusa Tea flavours include organic English breakfast, organic green tea, organic oolong, mango Green, lemon black, chai, and peach green.He added: “This funding comes at a perfect time. Adding this many new retailers and new products in such a short period of time is very expensive. Our Series A will allow me to expand our team, support our existing retailers, grow into new retailers, as well as launch some exciting new products. Our technology can be used for all beverages, not just tea, so we look forward to bringing other healthy and convenient beverages to the market very soon.”Since launching in 2017, Cusa Tea has expanded to more than 1,400 retail locations with partners including Sprouts, REI, King Soopers, Safeway, HEB and Cost Plus World Market.S CAP founder Jim Cali said: “Cusa Tea is a breakthrough in the tea category and offers the potential for disruption across the broader healthy beverage market. We have found it to be a superior cup of hot tea, winning medals at the Global Tea Championship versus the best loose leaf and bag competitors in the world. It also mixes quickly in cold water, transforming a bottle of water into a superior iced tea drink.“Given its taste, versatility and clean label, there is nothing like it on the market. We see huge potential for Cusa as a platform extending its reach in the broader functional and refreshment beverage space. S CAP is thrilled to part of the Cusa Tea team.”Share with your network: Tags: Cusa TeaUSlast_img read more

7 Startup Events and News to Watch This Week

first_imgTechnology October 14, 2013 Next Article 2 min read Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Brad Crescenzo Add to Queue NEXT gets startups on the fast track, the Glimpse conference shows them the future, Feast makes them think, Martha Stewart’s American Made teaches them to cook… This week’s notable news and startup events for entrepreneurs:1. You’ve got an idea, what’s NEXT? Open to individuals, but geared toward startup teams, the NEXT program aims to get you on the fast track to finding customers and forming your profitable business model today. (Boulder, Colo., October 15)2. Grow your social enterprise: Get legal advice for your social venture from D. Inder Comar, Principal at Comar Law. Covering a variety of legal topics, get advice for everything from company formation to doing battle with regulators and competitors. (San Francisco, Oct. 15)3. Glimpse the future of social discovery: At the Glimpse conference, companies and individuals focused on social discovery connect and discuss how people “live, decide, and buy.” Separated into music discovery, consumer decisions and data, speakers will talk about the many ways people are leveraging technology to discover new people, places and things. (New York, Oct. 16)4. Feast on world change: A motley crew of entrepreneurs, radicals, doers and thinkers are all coming together for “The Feast,” a conference that examines some of the world’s most ambitious issues. (New York City, Oct. 16-18)5. Martha’s American Made: Join Martha Stewart and creative celebrity entrepreneurs like Neil Blumenthal, co-founder and co-CEO of Warby Parker, for a day of workshops and high-level talks. An added enticement: Stewart herself offers attendees a live cooking demonstration. (New York, Oct. 16)6. NYC Knows B2B: Check out the 8th annual New York Business Expo and Conference to get a competitive edge. There’s sure to be face-to-face networking opportunities and a plethora of free and discounted products. (New York, Oct. 17)7. Tomorrow’s cutting edge tech: The DEMO Conference bills itself as a launch pad for emerging technology trends. Pitch, learn, network or find a corporate sponsored scholarship to pursue your world-changing idea. (Santa Clara, Calif., October 15 – 17)  7 Startup Events and News to Watch This Week –shares Register Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel.last_img read more

Bloomberg News Founding Editor Stepping Down

first_img Bloomberg News Founding Editor Stepping Down Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. This story originally appeared on Reuters Register Now » Business News –shares December 9, 2014 2 min read Next Article Matthew Winkler, founding editor in chief of Bloomberg News, is stepping down from his role leading the news service and will be succeeded by The Economist magazine editor in chief John Micklethwait, Bloomberg said on Tuesday.Micklethwait takes over in early 2015, Bloomberg said.Winkler will assume the title of editor in chief emeritus and will work directly with Bloomberg LP founder Michael Bloomberg, who is returning to full-time leadership of the financial data and news company next year, the company said.Bloomberg had stepped away from overseeing the company he founded while he served three terms as mayor of New York City, leaving that post at the end of 2013.Winkler joined Bloomberg in 1990, overseeing its expansion from a startup news wire to global media organization. With 2,400 reporters and editors in more than 150 bureaus worldwide, Bloomberg competes with Thomson Reuters Corp and News Corp’s Dow Jones Newswires in providing financial news and information.Winkler “has accomplished more then either of us thought possible back then,” Michael Bloomberg said in a statement.Micklethwait has been with The Economist, which is half owned by Pearson, since 1987.”There is no one more qualified to carry on Matt’s legacy than John Micklethwait,” Bloomberg said.(Reporting By Dan Burns; Editing by Alden Bentley and Christian Plumb) Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Reuters Add to Queuelast_img read more

4 Reasons Why Empathy Is Good for Business

first_imgEmotional Intelligence November 22, 2018 Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. Enroll Now for $5 8 min read Add to Queue 4 Reasons Why Empathy Is Good for Business Brand strategist, author and speaker Guest Writer –shares Next Article Maria Ross Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brand It’s easy to be cynical these days. The 24/7 news cycle brings us images and extreme headlines about tragedies almost as soon as they occur. If you listen to the rhetoric, it’s easy to believe violence, sexism, ageism, xenophobia and prejudice are winning the day. However, there is another — more positive — way to look at this. Access to information from around the globe gives us opportunities to consider the needs of others and to respond with compassionate action. Yes, playing to our emotions is the cable news and social media business model. But what we choose to do with our emotions is up to us. So, why not choose empathy? We all know empathy is the right thing to do, but empathy is not just good for the world (and our own sanity). It can also bring a competitive advantage in business. Our ability to see the world from the perspective of others is one of the most crucial tools in our business toolbox. So, let’s walk through the business benefits of empathy and acting with compassion.Related: The Dangers of Being an Empathetic Leader1. Increased sales, loyalty and referrals.Every skilled salesperson knows that the key to closing sales is anticipating your customers’ needs and demonstrating how your product or service will suit their needs best. Truly understanding your customers’ needs means reflecting on their fears, desires, pain points and whatever keeps them up at night. If your sales team doesn’t intimately understand your customers’ lives, how can you expect them to explain how your products or services fit their lives? This is the power of empathy in business.Going beyond increased sales though, what’s even more valuable are loyal customers and strong referrals. To see repeat customers and customers transformed into super fans, make sure this empathy mindset enlivens the culture of your entire organization from customer service to the accounting department. One industry where empathy clearly counts is in the ultra-competitive airline industry. Any company that can make flying more convenient and pleasant scores points with perpetually frustrated passengers. By now, we’re all familiar with this string of PR blunders from United Airlines demonstrating the failure of empathy on a corporate level. But you may be less familiar with Ryanair’s empathy success. After implementing their “Always Getting Better” program, which many customer annoyances like hidden charges,un-allocated seating and carry-on baggage restrictions, Ryanair saw a net profit increase from €867 million to €1.24 billion (US$1.39 billion). CEO Michael O’Leary famously remarked, “If I’d only known being nice to customers was going to work so well, I’d have started many years ago.”Who knew being nice could be so profitable?Related: United Airlines Passenger Dragged Off Plane by Airport Employees2. Accelerated productivity and innovationWhen customers perceive your company as empathetic, you will see sales increase, but wait…there’s more. Employees with strong empathy skills are also more productive and innovative. This means if you want to increase efficiency and expand the number of problems you can solve for customers, you want to hire employees with strong “soft skills.”Google knows this well. Since the company began in 1998, Google focused on hiring the best computer scientists, software engineers, analysts and highly skilled STEM professionals. But when it comes to putting together successful teams, it turns out that soft skills rule. Project Aristotle, a study released by Google in 2017, showed that the company’s most important new ideas came from B-teams comprised of employees exhibiting a wide range of skills including: equality, generosity, curiosity toward others’ ideas, empathy and emotional intelligence. These teams may not have had the top scientists, but when team members feel confident speaking up and know they are being heard, great ideas are born.Related: United Airlines Passenger Dragged Off Plane by Airport Employees3. Greater competitive advantage and market value.The highest performing companies also top the list of the Most Empathetic Companies. This might seem surprising at first: Don’t you have to be cutthroat and willing to win at any cost to be competitive in this global, capitalist economy? Well, if you’ve been paying attention, the answer will be obvious. In fact, statistics show that empathy is more important to business success than it has ever been.According to the 2016 Empathy Index, a report published by UK consulting firm The Empathy Business that seeks to analyze the internal culture of 170 companies on major financial indexes, “The top 10 companies (on the 2015 list)…increased in value more than twice as much as the bottom 10 and generated 50 percent more earnings (defined by market capitalization).”How’s that for competitive advantage?Related: 4 Ways to Turn Happiness into a Competitive Advantage4. Expanded engagement and collaboration.So if the best managers and team members express empathy and a willingness to act compassionately toward others, it stands to reason that companies with cultures that encourage empathy would attract highly engaged individuals. And that’s just what the data show. Empathetic companies also have better retention and higher morale among employees.This makes a lot of sense when you consider what today’s workers value. Good, high-performing individuals have lots of employment choices. Among other things, the gig economy and access to technology have created opportunities beyond traditional corporate work. So, it’s time to think beyond traditional corporate benefits.Additionally, according to a Gallup poll, 60 percent of Millennials are open to new job opportunities, while only 29 percent of them report feeling engaged at work. This means less than a third of workers born between 1980 and 1996 feel connected to their companies. Studies by the Queens School of Business and by the Gallup Organization show that this lack of connection can result in higher absenteeism, lower productivity…and lower profitability and share price for the company over time.What skilled workers are demanding is a different kind of working experience: they want their voices — and their workplace requirements — to be heard. That’s bad news for companies that aren’t considering company culture as they look toward future growth. Fortunately, making small, subtle shifts toward improving empathy in the culture can make a big difference.Related: Take Responsibility for Your Company’s Culture to Boost ProductivitySmall changes can yield big results.All of these business benefits sound great, but none of them are likely to make any company empathetic. To really make a change, the first step is to WANT to understand where others are coming from. When you focus on wanting to understand your colleagues, you can cultivate empathy in your own sphere of influence, which can have a big impact on your team, brand and the world.Here are some key areas to consider as you plan ahead for 2019:“Employee of the month” awards do not constitute an empathetic environment. When we feel that others value our contributions, we feel respected. While trying to create an empathetic environment from the top down is unlikely to work, letting workers know, through word and deed, their work is valuable should be a daily focus.Respect makes workers more engaged. There is an intangible value to feeling respected by one’s colleagues and superiors. We’re more likely to take personal responsibility and our desire not to lose the respect of others means we’ll be more engaged. Listen closely to how employees talk about their work. Ask them what would make their jobs easier and make them feel heard.Motivate based on individual needs. In Daniel Pink’s bestselling book, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, he points out that financial rewards are not universally enticing. Consider how your company rewards colleagues. How much better would things be if we asked our team members what they would like? Use empathy to see things from their point of view and act accordingly.Consider ways to flip the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as they want done unto them.” This rule goes for every stakeholder involved in your organization from investors to board members to customer service representatives to clients. This is the mantra of the empathy mindset. Get out of your own head. Engage in more active listening and curious conversation to unlock what matters most to them.As you reflect on the business benefits of creating a more empathetic company, you may have noticed the irony of compelling you to set aside your interests by showing that it’s actually in your interest to do so. Of course, in an ideal world, the drive to do the right thing would be motivation enough. But because motivation is unique to each individual — and organization — presenting a menu of reasons to embrace empathy is a good idea. In my own career, I have personally witnessed leaders and marketers who have embraced empathy purely for PR motives, but found themselves personally transformed — and left with a desire to do more good for the right reasons. Sometimes, initially speaking to selfish motives can help people and organizations transform “from the outside in,” and end up making the world a more empathetic place. Image credit: Shapecharge | Getty Images How this traditionally soft skill yields hard, bottom-line results for organizations big and small Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more

The a2 Milk Company signs South Korean distribution deal

first_imgThe a2 Milk Company signs South Korean distribution dealPosted By: News Deskon: April 17, 2018In: Business, Dairy, Distribution, IndustriesPrintEmailThe a2 Milk Company (a2MC) has signed an exclusive sales and distribution agreement with South Korean pharmaceutical company Yuhan Corporation.This agreement gives Yuhan Corporation the right to promote and distribute a2MC’s branded products throughout South Korea.a2MC claims that South Korea was an attractive market for the company, due to the country’s high per-capita dairy consumption rates, strong retail market and growing e-Commerce channel.Initial sales of a2 Milk products are expected to begin in the second half of 2018, and products will be sourced from a2’s production sites in Australia and New Zealand.Nutritional products for the South Korean market will be produced by a2MC’s supply partner Synlait Milk.Managing Director & CEO of The a2 Milk Company, Geoffrey Babidge said: “Yuhan Corporation is a long established, highly credentialed and principled Korean business.“We share similar values and ambitions, and with our complimentary capabilities believe that together we can build a meaningful business in South Korea.”Lee Junghee, CEO and president of Yuhan Corporation added: “Aligning both our companies’ histories and values to promote growth through continuous research and innovation, Yuhan Corporation and The a2 Milk Company will together launch a range of dairy nutritional products with only the A2 beta-casein protein type that Koreans can consume for their health and well-being.”Share with your network: Tags: a2 MilkDairySouth Korealast_img read more

Stryyk expands zeroproof spirits offer with Stryyk Not Vodka in UK

first_imgStryyk expands zero-proof spirits offer with Stryyk Not Vodka in UKPosted By: Contributoron: December 03, 2018In: Alcohol, Beverage, Industries, Innovation, New productsPrintEmailStryyk, the UK-based zero-proof spirits brand which launched this year, has added Stryyk Not Vodka to its portfolio.Available from this month, the beverage has undergone “a rigorous development process” to ensure it delivers on flavour and has taken inspiration from its alcoholic counterpart.Distilled and bottled in the UK, Stryyk Not Vodka is clear in appearance and features cucumber and menthol notes with a sweet, wheaty undertone and hints of coriander. It contains no sugar, no fat, no carbs and no artificial flavours.Stryyk was founded by Alex Carlton, creator of cocktail mixer company Funkin. “Latest figures show that one in three people aged 16-24 never drink alcohol and those who do drink less. So with so many consumers now choosing to stay sober, it is important for pubs and bars to review their non-alcoholic offerings,” said Carlton. “We are committed to offering the best tasting-zero-proof spirits to enable the trade to deliver flavour-driven, credible and stylish no- and low-alcohol serves for the growing number of consumers looking to limit their alcohol consumption.”He added: “Stryyk Not Vodka is available in time for the key Christmas period to enable non-drinkers or designated drivers to enjoy the festivities. It is also perfectly timed for the new year when many consumers overhaul their lifestyles and limit their alcohol intake.”The launch joins the brand’s portfolio which also consists of Stryyk Not Gin and Stryyk Not Rum.Share with your network: Tags: non-alcoholicStryykUKlast_img read more

Dry Soda boosts Dry Zero Sugar line with new ruby citrus variant

first_imgDry Soda boosts Dry Zero Sugar line with new ruby citrus variantPosted By: Contributoron: January 03, 2019In: Beverage, Industries, Innovation, New products, Soft drinksPrintEmailDry Soda will expand its Dry Zero Sugar range with the launch of a ruby citrus flavour, containing only five ingredients.Lightly sweetened with organic stevia leaf extract, the beverage joins the Dry Zero Sugar line which consists of four other variants: cola, peach tea, mountain berry, and island fruit.With five calories per serving, ruby citrus does not contain aspartame, artificial sweeteners, added colours, sodium, caffeine or gluten. Dry Soda said the flavour is tart and grapefruit-forward, with a lightly sweet finish of bright citrus.Dry Soda CEO and founder Sharelle Klaus said: “We can’t wait to get Dry Zero Sugar ruby citrus soda in front of consumers. The flavour is bright and fresh and completely new to the sugar-free craft soda set.“The most frequent flavour requested by our consumers this past year was a citrus blend, which also lines up with broader market trends toward bold, tart flavours. Dry Zero Sugar ruby citrus soda is an answer to that need. We also believe that soda should be fun, and this flavour and packaging are definitely fun.”Dry Soda has hired artist Catalina Estrada to design the packaging for its Dry Zero Sugar line, who took inspiration from the bright tastes and ingredients in ruby citrus and employed her signature kaleidoscope style to create the bespoke designs.All flavours of Dry Zero Sugar soda are sold in six packs of 12oz cans in the US with a suggested retail price of between $5.99 and $6.99. Ruby citrus will be released in March 2019.Share with your network: Tags: Dry SodaUSlast_img read more

Blue Diamond invests in US almond facility expansion

first_imgBlue Diamond invests in US almond facility expansionPosted By: Alex Clereon: January 30, 2019In: Agriculture, Food, Industries, Manufacturing, SnacksPrintEmailAlmond cooperative Blue Diamond has begun an expansion at its processing facility in Turlock, California.The new addition is part of Blue Diamond’s continued plans to expand value-added product lines and deliver innovative almond products worldwide.The 52,000-square-foot building will be the latest construction of the three-phased project that will eventually yield a total of about 500,000 square feet of building space over the next nine years. This phase of the project is scheduled to be completed in spring 2020 and will accommodate growth of the cooperative’s business, adding new automated processing and packaging equipment that will help meet rising demand.The company held a groundbreaking ceremony at the 200,000-square-foot manufacturing facility yesterday.Blue Diamond president and CEO Mark Jansen said: “We are pleased to build our partnership with the Turlock community by investing to expand our facilities and workforce. We are creating the healthiest almond products and delivering the benefits of almonds to the world. This project allows Blue Diamond to meet the growing demand for our innovative almond products.”Blue Diamond chairman Dan Cummings added: “We are thankful to our growers who own this cooperative for entrusting their almonds to us so we can continue to make valuable investments. This project gives them a secure future in the almond business.”Blue Diamond first announced its plans to build a manufacturing plant in the City of Turlock in April 2012, creating more than 100 jobs.Amy Bublak, the mayor of Turlock – a town 60 miles east of San Jose – claimed that the community was “tremendously excited” about the expansion of the Blue Diamond plant. “We know Blue Diamond has other company locations where they could have placed this expansion, but we are proud they chose Turlock. We look forward to the additional jobs this expansion will bring.”Share with your network: Tags: almondsBlue DiamondUSlast_img read more

Palestinian anger over US decision to end funding for UN agency

first_img Read more Critics say move to end all funding for agency that assists millions of refugees could further destabilise Middle East Trump administration … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Palestinian territories The latest major Trump resignations and firings The agency, which assists more than 5 million registered Palestinian refugees, says it now faces the threat of major closures to its network of schools and health centres.Photograph: Said Khatib/AFP/Getty Images This article is more than 10 months old Reuse this content Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Palestinian anger over US decision to end funding for UN agency Share via Email Share on Pinterest Palestinians have condemned the US decision to halt funding to a UN agency that helps educate, feed and provide healthcare for more than 5 million Palestinian refugees across several countries as a “flagrant assault” on their rights.The US state department said on Friday that it would no longer support the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which operates in the occupied territories as well as Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. It described the organisation as “irredeemably flawed”.The announcement sparked anger and concern, even though it had been widely anticipated. Critics see the move as part of a concerted plan to undermine core Palestinian demands in peace negotiations and say it could further destabilise the Middle East.The decision means the US, by far the biggest UNRWA donor, will withhold $300m (£230m) in annual funds, which it had agreed to provide only last December. Donald Trump had already axed $200m in bilateral aid for Gaza and the West Bank. Since you’re here… Read more news Share on LinkedIn Support The Guardian Middle East and North Africa Share on WhatsApp Share on Facebook Share on Twitter The Observer Topics Sat 1 Sep 2018 12.19 EDT European and Arab countries have pledged to protect the agency and Germany promised a significant increase in financial backing. Jordan has already announced plans for an emergency fundraising conference on the sidelines of the UN general assembly in New York later this month.The “camps” supported by UNRWA have been around for nearly 70 years, and most are more like villages or shanty-towns than tented camps used by those who have fled homes more recently. They have permanent buildings but often few services.Many of those who live there now and are supported by UNRWA are second-, third-, and even fourth-generation descendants of about 700,000 Palestinians who fled or were driven from their homes around the time when the state of Israel was formed in 1948.Palestinians call that exodus the Nakba – or “catastrophe” – and demand the right of return for themselves and descendants to modern-day Israel.In contrast to UN practice, some Trump advisors and supporters say the descendants of Palestinian refugees living in countries like Syria should not be considered refugees. They include his ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, who has written about “so-called ‘refugees’ from other countries, who have never spent a day of their lives in Israel”.Washington said that to get its funding back, UNRWA needed to make reforms, but did not specify what they were. It also said the Palestinians should renew peace talks with Israel.UNRWA rejected the criticisms of its work, which it pointed out had been endorsed by the World Bank, and recently approved by the same US administration now cutting it off.The decision was issued during the Jewish sabbath, and there was no immediate comment from Israel. However the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has been a fierce critic of the agency, arguing that it should be abolished and its responsibilities taken over by the main UN refugee agency.Opposition lawmaker Yair Lapid praised the US move on Twitter, attacked UNRWA and described those it supported as “fake refugees”.One Gaza resident said the US move might increase suffering but would not dampen their desire to return to family lands.“I do not know what will happen to us in Gaza. We have enough calamities to endure,” said Samir Abu Riala, 56. “If they want to abolish the right of return, this is an illusion. I am a refugee who was born in a refugee camp and we will not stop receiving aid as long as we stay here as refugees. When we get back to our land they can stop helping.” Shares125125 This article is more than 10 months old The Observer Refugees Emma Graham-Harrison and Oliver Holmes in Jerusalem Share via Email Palestinian territories Palestinians said they considered the move a hostile one, particularly coming after the Trump administration recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moved its embassy there. Palestinians also claim the eastern part of the city as a capital for a future state.“[This move] does not serve peace but rather strengthens terrorism in the region,” a spokesman for the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, said on Saturday. He denounced it as “a flagrant assault against the Palestinian people and a defiance of UN resolutions”.The impact will potentially be serious – and rapid – for the millions who rely on the agency. “Such a decision aims at closing schools, clinics, hospitals and starving people,” said Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian chief negotiator.He said any vacuum in services could be exploited by extremists, and said the Palestinian Authority has been helping UNRWA fund camps in Syria and Lebanon for several years.That spending, he said, was “in order not to allow terrorist organisations such as Isis to recruit our people there because of their needs. Now, with this cut, what does this mean? … Those elements that want to achieve peace based on a peaceful, two state solution, are being destroyed”.For now, there is only enough funding to run schools and health clinics for a month, the UNRWA spokesman Christopher Gunness said. The organisation faced a $217m shortfall in its budget, which it would work to make up from other sources, he said.Gaza resident Hisham Saqallah described the move as “political blackmail” that would increase unrest. “If they stop aid to schools, this means destroying the futures of a large number of students and throwing them into the street,” he said. In Gaza, 252 UNRWA schools serve more than 240,400 students. First published on Sat 1 Sep 2018 10.48 EDT Share on Messenger Trump’s UN funding move risks damage to Palestine, Israel and USlast_img read more

Defense cites Trumps death penalty tweets in New York terror attack trial

first_imgThe president then tweeted: “There is also something appropriate about keeping him in the home of the horrible crime he committed. Should move fast. DEATH PENALTY!”Saipov’s legal team also cites Trump’s tweet earlier this week criticizing Sessions for indictments of two Republican congressmen, Chris Collins and Duncan Hunter. Share on Twitter New York Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)NYC terrorist was happy as he asked to hang ISIS flag in his hospital room. He killed 8 people, badly injured 12. SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY!November 2, 2017 Sayfullo Saipov’s attorney claims Jeff Sessions cannot ‘fairly and independently’ decide whether to seek capital punishment Share on Facebook This article is more than 10 months old This article is more than 10 months old Share on Facebook Last modified on Fri 7 Sep 2018 12.01 EDT Donald Trump Shares1212 Investigators work at the scene of an attack on 31 October where a man driving a truck killed eight people and injured 11.Photograph: Justin Lane/EPA Reuse this content “Two long running, Obama era, investigations of two very popular Republican Congressmen were brought to a well publicized charge, just ahead of the Mid-Terms, by the Jeff Sessions Justice Department. Two easy wins now in doubt because there is not enough time. Good job Jeff,” Trump tweeted.Trump was slammed at the time for crossing a line in suggesting the justice department should be acting in his political interests.Saipov’s legal team on Thursday said the utterance taints any decision Sessions will make in the Saipov case with the appearance of political influence. Facebook Topics Share via Email In new papers filed in Manhattan supreme court on Thursday, Saipov’s attorney, Jennifer Brown, wrote that Sessions cannot “fairly and independently decide whether to seek the death penalty”.She added: “President Trump’s tweets mock Congress’s command that a death sentence should be sought only if the Attorney General believes that ‘the circumstances of the case’ warrant capital punishment.”Shortly after the horrific incident, Trump signalled a desire for the ultimate in retribution against Saipov, who was apprehended by a police officer – who shot him in the abdomen as he brandished weapons and yelled in the street – and taken into custody. Share on Pinterest Jeff Sessionscenter_img news Share on Messenger Defense cites Trump’s death penalty tweets in New York terror attack trial Since you’re here… Support The Guardian Sayfullo Saipov is accused of killing eight people in the terrorist attack in New York on 31 October 2017. Photograph: Handout/AFP/Getty Images Donald Trump’s tweet last year that the man accused of the bicycle path terrorist attack in New York “SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY” means that attorney general Jeff Sessions can’t make a fair decision on whether to seek his execution, the suspect argued in court papers on Thursday.Sayfullo Saipov is charged with killing eight people with a rented pickup truck on 31 October 2017. The department of justice, headed by Sessions, is expected to decide in the coming weeks whether to seek capital punishment for Saipov, the New York Daily News reported. Twitter Thu 6 Sep 2018 21.05 EDT Share on Twitter Donald Trump Pinterest Share on WhatsApp ‘Good job Jeff’: Trump blames Sessions as Republicans charged before midterms Share on LinkedIn Guardian staff and agencies … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Read more Share via Emaillast_img read more

Silicon Valley in Iowa congressmans fight for tech jobs in rural America

first_imgShare on Twitter Silicon Valley in Iowa: congressman’s fight for tech jobs in rural America Share on Pinterest What we need to do is make sure the young folks have an opportunity to stay in JeffersonRo Khanna Last modified on Sun 16 Dec 2018 06.02 EST Sun 16 Dec 2018 06.00 EST Ro Khanna is not running for president.Unlike many of his colleagues in Congress, the Silicon Valley congressman was not in Iowa to test the waters for a White House run. His visit was decidedly more ambitious: to bridge the deepening economic divide between urban and rural America.On a recent Saturday night, Khanna, a progressive Democrat who was recently re-elected in the diverse, deep-blue California district where Apple, Intel and Yahoo have headquarters, joined tech leaders here in Jefferson, an Iowa town of 4,200 people. It is located in a predominantly white, rural swath of the state represented by congressman Steve King, a far-right conservative whose questioning of Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, during a hearing on Capitol Hill this week fueled criticism that Congress doesn’t understand how technology giants operate.The gulf between the two districts is precisely why Khanna came to Jefferson.“The digital revolution is one that every community should and can participate in,” he told an audience of local leaders and out-of-town tech industry executives.They gathered in the town’s History Boy Theatre to learn about an initiative that promises to bring high-paying tech and software design jobs to Jefferson. If it succeeds, they believe the program could be a blueprint for revitalizing other rural communities. Ro Khanna, a California Democrat, pushes initiative in the state amid questions over his own political aspirations A decade after the financial crisis, economic prosperity has become increasingly linked to geography, according to research released this month by the Economic Innovation Group, a thinktank founded by the Silicon Valley entrepreneur Sean Parker.“The recession and an uneven recovery has led to a rural America that is much more distressed,” said John Lettieri, president of the group, adding: “The trends suggest that it’s going to get worse, not better.”The study found that between the recession and ensuing recovery, 30% of rural communities were downwardly mobile, nearly twice the proportion of urban communities during the same period.“Nobody was paying attention to the demise of rural America,” said Linc Kroeger, of Pillar Technology, a national software company owned by Accenture that has an office in Des Moines and is spearheading the Jefferson initiative. “There’s all this talent there but there’s nothing to move back to.”Kroeger grew up in Independence, Iowa, a few hours east of Jefferson and had to choose: stay in Iowa near his friends and families or move to pursue a career in technology.He hopes Jefferson’s young people won’t face the same dilemma.Next summer, Pillar plans to open an office in Jefferson that will employ as many as 30 full-time workers. In turn, the town has agreed to build a “career academy” that will offer a highly specialized software development training program to feed the company’s workforce. @laurenegambino Share on Messenger Twitter Share on Facebook Shares128128 Share on LinkedIn Facebook Twitter A county fair in Independence, Iowa, a few hours drive east of Jefferson. Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA Share on Facebook ‘Change can’t wait’: insurgent Democrats seek to shake up politics Silicon Valley Support The Guardian Kroeger pitched the project to Khanna and the congressman was eager to tap his connections in Silicon Valley. The culmination of those efforts was a sunset tour of Jefferson’s belltower, which offered the California delegation a bird’s-eye view of Iowa’s farmland. Just below was the 19th-century building that Pillar is renovating as a modern workspace worthy of a Silicon Valley startup. The office, which the company calls a “forge”, will have “everything but the beer on tap” associated with startup headquarters, Kroeger promises: future employees may not be old enough to drink legally.The community is “overwhelmingly supportive” of the plan, said Toni Wetrich, a Jefferson resident whose husband, Matt, sits on the city council.“When I heard about it, my first thought was: Jefferson? Iowa? Is this really going to happen here?” she said. “This is the kind of thing that can completely transform a city.”Microsoft’s Kevin Scott, a product of rural Virginia, said it was problematic that the majority of the country’s tech jobs were concentrated in a handful of metropolitan areas. “It’s incumbent upon us to make sure other parts of the country have the same sorts of opportunity,” he said. Lauren Gambino in Jefferson, Iowa Share on Twitter Pinterest Democratic candidates campaign in Des Moines in 2016. Photograph: Scott Olson/Getty Images … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Pinterest Share via Email Next year, Khanna plans to introduce legislation that would establish a “21st century land grant” to bring high-tech jobs to distressed rural communities and declining industrial towns, the places that powered Donald Trump’s rise. He is courting Republican support for the bill and will lobby the Democratic presidential candidates to adopt the vision as part of their economic agendas. As Khanna, 42, builds a national profile through his work in “Trump country,” in Washington he has become a prominent voice for progressive causes. He recently partnered with Senator Bernie Sanders on the Stop Bezos Act, which went nowhere in Congress but resulted in Amazon raising its minimum hourly wages to $15. He co-sponsored a House bill to withdraw the US from Saudi Arabia’s war coalition in Yemen. House Democratic leader, Nancy Pelosi, tapped him to write an “Internet Bill of Rights”. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a rising star of the left, has praised Khanna for being an “early adopter” of a “Green New Deal” to invest in renewable energy. And next year, he will serve as the first vice chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Meanwhile, the congressman’s visits to Iowa have raised speculation about his political ambitions. He’s young, progressive and the son of Indian immigrants – a biography that could bolster a presidential ticket or make him a contender for a cabinet position in a future Democratic White House.Pete D’Alessandro, Iowa director for Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, said Khanna’s work here could help shape the debate ahead of what’s expected to be an unsettled Democratic primary in which Iowa will be the first battlefield.“He’s the perfect person to advocate for progressive policies because he’s not a presidential candidate,” D’Alessandro said. “He could be a go-to person for candidates looking to make in-roads with the progressive movement here.”Riding across the state in a gray pickup truck, Khanna touted the tech initiative at every stop. He broadened the appeal – tying it to a list of progressive economic priorities that he argues will reduce income disparities and help the US compete on a global stage with India and China.At a meeting of the Asian & Latino Coalition in Des Moines, Khanna said Democrats needed to articulate a forward-facing vision for rural America to rival Trump’s “nostalgia” for a bygone era.“It’s not a division between economics and culture,” he said, speaking to a multiracial audience for the first time that weekend. “It’s a matter of having a meaningful place in a 21st-century economy.”There was a moment of silence and then the room erupted in applause. Iowa Since you’re here… Topics Democrats Iowa features US Congress Read more Facebook Share on WhatsApp Rohit ‘Ro’ Khanna, a Democratic representative for California’s 17th congressional district, has built a nationwide profile advocating for progressive policies.Photograph: The Washington Post/Getty Images Share via Email Sitting in the front rows were Microsoft’s chief technology officer, Kevin Scott; the LinkedIn co-founder Allen Blue; the Ripple CEO, Brad Garlinghouse; and other industry players. Behind them were a group of Jefferson high school students who aspired to careers in computer science and software design.“The innovation is here,” Khanna said. “What we need to do is make sure the young folks have an opportunity to stay in Jefferson, have a family in Jefferson and participate in the new economy.”Since arriving in Congress last year, Khanna has sought to position himself as an “ambassador” to parts of the country that have so far been left out of the new knowledge-based economy. Rather than outsource tech jobs to India and China, he argues that companies should look to rural and small-town America. “We have a choice in Silicon Valley,” he said in an interview. “We can either continue to exist as an island to ourselves, focused on wealth creation and innovation … or we can understand that we are in the middle of a software revolution and answer the nation’s call to provide economic opportunity and technology to places left behind.”“If we take the former approach,” he warned, “then in that void – in the communities that are left behind – movements will continue to emerge that blame technology, that blame automation, that blame immigration, that blame globalization for wage stagnation and job loss.” Reuse this contentlast_img read more

Its astonishing The demise of the daily White House press briefing

first_imgTrump administration The US press corps has to learn to stand up to Trump Laptops and phones, winter coats and scarves, a hubbub of different languages. A row of cameras sits on a bench. John Roberts of Fox News has a steely expression as he clutches a mic. Jim Acosta of CNN, press pass reinstated after his run-in with the president last year, speaks simultaneously to his own viewers: “We’ll see how much time we have Sarah Sanders. As we’ve seen in recent weeks, these briefings can end very quickly.” Read more Share on Pinterest ‘It’s astonishing’: The demise of the daily White House press briefing Read more Tue 1 Jan 2019 01.00 EST … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share via Email How Sarah Sanders became Trump’s liar-in-chief Share via Email Trump administration Few have made such an explosive start as Sean Spicer, whose debut briefing in January 2017 included a tirade at the media and the now-infamous assertion about Donald Trump’s inauguration: “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration – period – both in person and around the globe.” The White House press secretary, Sarah Sanders, speaks at a press briefing at the White House.Photograph: Xinhua/Rex/Shutterstock Twitter Trump v CNN: lawsuit becomes test case on press freedom @smithinamerica Share on Messenger Play VideoAdvertisementPlayCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%FullscreenMuteThis is a modal window. Share on WhatsApp Suzanne Moore Pinterest Then a voice on the public-address system: “The press briefing will begin at 1.20pm. Thank you.” The hundred-or-so journalists crammed into the seats and aisles erupt in knowing laughs and groans. Sanders eventually enters at 1.35pm. It will be the White House press secretary’s sole briefing in the whole of November – a paltry total she will match in December.The question-and-answer session was described as must-see television in the early months of the Trump administration, gripping millions of viewers and earning the accolade of parody on the TV variety show Saturday Night Live. But now the daily press briefing is no more. It has effectively become a monthly press briefing, raising concerns that it might soon disappear altogether.“That would be a tragedy and a campaign point in 2020,” said Anthony Scaramucci, who served as White House communications director for 11 days in 2017. “I pray that that does not happen. For the president to be successful, you don’t want that to be a campaign talking point in 2020. The American people intuitively know that there needs to be an open communication between the White House and the free press.”The first official White House press secretary was George Akerson under President Herbert Hoover in 1929. In recent decades the position became best known to the outside world for the briefing, in which the press secretary stands at a podium and fields questions from reporters in a briefing room (formerly a swimming pool) in the west wing. Spicer’s briefings became a compulsive, car-crash spectacle. There was fluster, ill-fitting suits, gaffes such as “Holocaust centres” and Melissa McCarthy’s deathless impression of him with motorised lectern on Saturday Night Live. Scaramucci said: “They were must-watch television because he made a decision that he was going to lie and so everyone knew he was lying. There was a contradiction to the press briefing. Every Spice Girl has a nickname. His was Liar Spice.”When Spicer was replaced by Sarah Sanders, the ship steadied, even though the falsehoods and acrimonious exchanges did not. Briefings became scarcer and lost the old momentum. It was like a long-running TV series that had passed its prime but did not know when to quit. Share on LinkedIn Support The Guardian Share on Twitter “I don’t know any White House reporter who thinks the president should take fewer questions. It’s a little bit messy but that’s to be expected. I don’t know if they know they can ask the marines to turn off the helicopter.”But the decline of briefings by the press secretary is concerning, Knox argues. “The people who are hurt the most are the smaller news outlets. If you’re down to one, two or three people in your Washington bureau, having a set time when the White House is available for questions is important.”Scaramucci, who during his brief tenure insisted that live TV coverage of the briefings should resume, said: “Any time that the press can talk to the principal and can talk to the principal in volume, which has been experienced in this White House, is in general a very good thing for free press. I would, however, caution that it is still necessary for the comms team to have a regular interaction with the press because there are many things that go on inside the White House and the administration that the comms team and the press secretary need to discuss that is perhaps different from the principal.“So it’s not a great excuse to use the accessibility of the principal as an alibi for having less press conferences.”Trump’s freewheeling question-and-answer sessions, interviews and tweets, along with a steady flow of White House leaks, have arguably made this the most transparent presidency in American history. Yet in other ways this administration, with its flouting of norms and lurches from crisis to crisis, is also the most opaque.Mike McCurry, who was press secretary to President Bill Clinton in the pre-Twitter 1990s, said: “If you have a president who gives you his innermost thoughts by tweets, why do you need a spokesperson to amplify what the president has already told you? But there’s an accountability function where the press has an opportunity to ask about federal government and all the other things going on.“It was religious that we would do some kind of briefing every day. It was sacrosanct that someone would stand up at the White House every day and answer questions as an essential part of American democracy. The idea you could go a month without a briefing is astonishing.” Shares828828 Share on Twitter This article is more than 6 months old US politics Since you’re here… Share on Facebook Read more Last modified on Tue 1 Jan 2019 12.43 EST Share on Facebook Sean Spicer Six bizarre moments we won’t let Sean Spicer forget – video report news Anthony Scaramucci This article is more than 6 months old David Smith in Washington Facebook Topics Sanders gave 11 briefings in January, seven in February, eight in March, eight in April, eight in May, five in June, three in July, five in August, one in September, two in October and one in November, making a total of 59, according to a count by Martha Joynt Kumar, director of the White House Transition Project. Each of the last three was alongside other officials, not on her own.Over the comparable period in 2010, Barack Obama’s press secretary, Robert Gibbs, held 95 briefings, Kumar’s research found. And from January to November 2002, George W Bush’s press secretary, Ari Fleischer, held a total of 85 briefings.Sanders is not only more infrequent but also terser. Her briefings were usually around 15 to 18 minutes, according to Kumar, whereas Gibbs’s were usually around an hour and Fleischer’s were about 25 minutes.The shift coincides with the press enjoying increasing access to Trump himself. It has become a ritual for the president to stop on the South Lawn and take questions from a scrum of media, albeit competing with the roar of the Marine One helicopter, before he boards and flies away. Combined with his insatiable tweeting, he has effectively rendered the press secretary close to redundant.Kumar writes: “The basic finding is that Sarah Sanders doesn’t give briefings when Trump is doing multiple interviews and Q&As. October is a clear, though somewhat extreme, example. Together, Trump gave 71 interviews and short Q&As and she gave two briefings. In January, on the other hand, she gave 11 briefings and he did a total of 15 interviews and Q&As.”The White House Correspondents Association has raised the issue with the administration. Olivier Knox, its president and author of a 2013 article headlined “Save the (terrible) White House briefing”, said: “It’s largely happened with the president of the United States being significantly more available in terms of taking questions from reporters on the South Lawn and in a series of interviews. He’s become much more his own spokesman. The press briefing has become a monthly event in the era of Trump, and concerns are that it may soon disappear altogether Reuse this contentlast_img read more

US federal agencies to hold off on pay raises for top Trump

first_imgSat 5 Jan 2019 12.55 EST This article is more than 6 months old Share on WhatsApp This article is more than 6 months old US federal government shutdown 2019 Since you’re here… Share on Facebook … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Twitter Support The Guardian Share on Pinterest The guidance was issued on Friday in a memo from Margaret Weichert, acting director of the Office of Personnel Management.The raises were the result of a pay freeze for top federal officials, including the vice-president and cabinet secretaries, that was on the verge of expiring because of the shutdown.In the memo, Weichert writes that “in the current absence of congressional guidance”, her office “believes it would be prudent for agencies to continue to pay these senior political officials at the frozen rate until appropriations legislation is enacted that would clarify the status of the freeze”.White House press secretary Sarah Sanders had said earlier that the administration was “aware of the issue” and “exploring options to prevent this from being implemented while some federal workers are furloughed”.Donald Trump, who last month signed an executive order stopping pay raises for regular federal employees, told reporters at a press conference he “might consider” asking cabinet secretaries and other top officials to forgo the raises. Vice-President Mike Pence committed to doing so.The raises, which were first reported by the Washington Post, appear to be an unintended consequence of a shutdown that is affecting hundreds of thousands of federal employees, forcing many to work without pay.Trump and congressional leaders met again Friday to try to hash out a resolution, but emerged no closer to a deal. Trump is demanding billions of dollars for his long-promised wall along the southern border. Democrats refuse to give him the money. Talks continued on Saturday.Sanders called the raises “another unnecessary byproduct of the shutdown” and said Congress “can easily take care of this by funding the government and securing our borders”. Reuse this content Topics Federal agencies have been directed to hold off enacting pay raises for top administration officials during the government shutdown that has left hundreds of thousands of federal workers without pay. US politics Last modified on Sun 20 Jan 2019 14.40 ESTcenter_img Trump tweets ‘not much headway’ on shutdown as key services threatened Associated Press in Washington US politics Share on Facebook Mike Pence, the vice-president, was one of those officials in line for a pay rise.Photograph: Jim Young/Reuters Memo advises it would be ‘prudent’ for agencies not to enact raises as shutdown leaves thousands of federal workers unpaid Shares6565 Share on LinkedIn Share on Twitter Share via Email Share on Messenger Read more US federal agencies to hold off on pay raises for top Trump officials Share via Email newslast_img read more

New York City proposes legislation to ban sale of fur

first_imgShare on Pinterest news New York City proposes legislation to ban sale of fur Animals Thu 28 Mar 2019 15.50 EDT New York Share on WhatsApp Shares456456 Reuse this content There are 130 businesses in the city that primarily sell fur – which employ up to 1,100 people, the industry estimates, and would be forced out of business if the ban goes through.Photograph: Sergey Ryzhov/Alamy Share on Twitter Animal welfare Share on Twitter Stores could be fined from $500 to $1,500 for each violation under the proposed ban, but used fur apparel would be exempt Topics … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share via Email This article is more than 3 months oldcenter_img Sign up for the US morning briefing But there are 130 businesses in the city that primarily sell fur – which employ up to 1,100 people, the industry estimates, and would be forced out of business if the ban goes through.That doesn’t count big department stores and high-end retailers, such as Bloomingdale’s and Saks, which sell fur apparel alongside other items.“It’s shocking that they would want to do this,” said Nancy Daigneault, vice-president of the International Fur Federation. “These are people’s jobs. These people are fourth-, fifth-generation furriers. They’ve been good, tax-paying citizens for a very long time. They want to feed their families.”Stores could be fined from $500 to $1,500 for each violation of the proposed ban. It would exempt used fur apparel. Officials are also considering adding an exception for religious garb, such as the large fur hats worn by some men in the Orthodox Jewish community.The bill was introduced alongside other animal-friendly measures, which would ban the declawing of cats and require new buildings to use glass that deters birds from smashing into buildings. Support The Guardian Share on Messenger New York New York City would ban the sale of fur under new legislation introduced Thursday in the city council. Share on Facebook This article is more than 3 months old The city – home to the biggest market for fur in the United States – would join places such as Los Angeles and San Francisco as cities that have passed laws banishing mink coats and coyote-trimmed jackets from sale.“I’m an animal lover, and I believe that it is cruel to kill an animal just for the purpose of buying and wearing a fur coat,” the city council speaker, Corey Johnson, who is sponsoring the ban, said at city hall on Thursday.High-end designers, he noted, have increasingly abandoned fur as a fashion symbol. “Michael Kors doesn’t use fur. Donatella Versace doesn’t use fur. Diane von Furstenberg doesn’t use fur. The industry has moved away from fur, because it’s cruel and inhumane,” he said. Coyote fur is a booming fashion trend. But is it ethical? Share via Email Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Erin Durkin in New York Read more Since you’re here…last_img read more

AM253 – Enchroma Glasses

first_imgPodcast: Play in new window | Download253-09-22-17 Enchroma GlassesHey there! Welcome to Accessibility Minute, your weekly look at Assistive Technology, those clever tools and devices designed to help people who have difficulties with vision, mobility, hearing or other special needs!Color blindness affects millions of people worldwide.  It affects 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women.  Most people with color blindness are not blind to color, but have a reduced ability to see or differentiate them.  This is where Enchroma glasses come in.According to their website, “Enchroma glasses are the only specialty eyewear that alleviates red-green color blindness, enhancing colors without the compromise of color accuracy.”  Their products provide vibrant, accurate color, and look like a stylish pair of sunglasses.  There are a variety of styles available and come in both Indoor or Outdoor lenses.Visit Enchroma.com to learn more about the technology behind these specialty glasses.For more information, to read our blog, or to drop us a line, visit EasterSealsTech.com.  That was your Accessibility Minute for this week! I¹m Laura Medcalf with the INDATA Project at Easterseals Crossroads, in Indiana.Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedEnchroma : Color-correcting eyewear for color blindnessSeptember 21, 2017In “Products and Devices”Cyber Eyez Bringing Life into FocusApril 26, 2018In “Apps”Media AppearancesApril 3, 2019Similar postlast_img read more

Toca Mystery House

first_img“Encourage your kid to slow down and spend time on the more creative, experiment-based features of Toca Mystery House.  What happens when you tap in different places? What about tapping and holding?”Available for both iOS and Android devices.Happy Halloween!Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedAM154 – Toca Boo AppOctober 23, 2015In “Accessibility Minute”Halloween Fun with Toca BooOctober 31, 2017In “Apps”AM302 – Toca Boca AppsNovember 2, 2018In “Accessibility Minute” I have written about several apps from Toca Boca over the years.  Toca Boca is an “award-winning play studio that creates digital toys and everyday products for kids.”  One of the company’s newest apps is Toca Mystery House.This app features a spooky house filled with surprises meant for slightly older children.  Younger children can still play, but the overall feel is a bit spooky.  Children will have fun exploring the spooky house’s rooms and floors.  This app is all about exploration and trial and error.Features of Toca Mystery House:Recommended for ages 7 and upEerie exploration and playful puzzles appeal to older kidsEducational:Free-play exploration, decision making, prediction, motion, shapes, counting, basic science experimentation concepts and morelast_img read more