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Coronavirus: 'I know my life will not be saved in this pandemic' - BBC News

## Coronavirus: 'I know my life will not be saved in this pandemic' ##

6 April 2020
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Image copyrightLUCY WATTS

Lucy Watts MBE is 26 years old and preparing to die if she contracts coronavirus.

The disability advocate has a life-limiting condition which includes multiple organ failure and restrictive lung disease requiring 24-hour care.

As the British Medical Association (BMA) releases guidance preparing doctors to make "brutal" decisions and prioritise treatment for those most likely to recover, Lucy fears that if she contracts Covid-19 she will not be saved.

"My life is devalued on the basis of my disabilities and needs, rather than my life and the difference I have made to the world," she says.

This is an edited version of a blog Lucy wrote over several days, trying to make sense of her personal situation


Image copyrightLUCY WATTS
Image caption

Lucy Watts speaking at a TedX event with her support dog Molly at her side

I know full well in this Covid-19 pandemic that my life is not one that will be saved.

bbc  news  covid-19  blog  disability  society 
yesterday by ndf
UK councils face lawsuits over access to education in lockdown | Education | The Guardian
## UK councils face lawsuits over access to education in lockdown ##

Government pressed to ensure poorer pupils have laptops and broadband for home learning

Coronavirus – latest updates
See all our coronavirus coverage
Richard Adams Education editor

Mon 6 Apr 2020 17.16 BSTLast modified on Mon 6 Apr 2020 20.55 BST

Children working on tablets at home. In many families, children are sharing a tablet or laptop with siblings and working parents or have access only to mobile phones.

Photograph: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

The UK government must ensure pupils from poor backgrounds have computers and internet connections during the coronavirus lockdown or face legal action for depriving children of their education, according to a group of legal activists.

The Good Law Project argues that the widespread reliance on online learning during the lockdown is illegally disadvantaging state school pupils who lack access to tablets, laptops or adequate broadband. It says it will sue local authorities to try to push the government into action.

The move could lead to courts forcing the government to ensure the provision of adequate internet connections and IT equipment to hundreds of thousands of children from poor or vulnerable backgrounds while the lockdown continues and schools remain closed.

“Local authorities in England have a clear obligation to ensure that all children can access teaching, so there’s a very strong claim against them to ensure that they are doing so,” Jolyon Maugham, the Good Law Project’s founder, told the Guardian.
guardian  news  education  covid-19  elearning  e-access 
yesterday by ndf
Coronavirus: Boris Johnson moved to intensive care as symptoms worsen - BBC News
# Coronavirus: Boris Johnson moved to intensive care as symptoms worsen #

1 hour ago
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Image copyrightREUTERS

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been moved to intensive care in hospital after his coronavirus symptoms "worsened", Downing Street has said.

A spokesman said he was moved on the advice of his medical team and was receiving "excellent care".

Mr Johnson has asked Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to deputise "where necessary", the spokesman added.

The prime minister, 55, was admitted to hospital in London with "persistent symptoms" on Sunday evening.

The Queen has been kept informed about Mr Johnson's health by No 10, according to Buckingham Palace.

BBC political correspondent Chris Mason said the prime minister was given oxygen late on Monday afternoon, before being taken to intensive care.

However, he has not been put on a ventilator.

A No 10 statement read: "The prime minister has been under the care of doctors at St Thomas' Hospital, in London, after being admitted with persistent symptoms of coronavirus.


### Analysis By Laura Kuenssberg ###
Political editor

After very, very little information was shared today, the prime minister was taken into intensive care at around 19:00 BST.

bbc  news  health  covid-19 
yesterday by ndf
Coronavirus: Does my grandfather’s 1940 infectious disease advice still hold true? - BBC News

## Coronavirus: Does my grandfather’s 1940 infectious disease advice still hold true? ##

By Frank Gardner
BBC News
6 April 2020
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Image copyrightFRANK GARDNER

"The room chosen for home nursing should be light, well ventilated and as remote as possible from the household living quarters."

These words were published 80 years ago and written by my grandfather, Dr John Davy Rolleston, in his book Acute Infectious Diseases - A Handbook for Practitioners and Students. In these dark days of Covid-19 some practices have remained timeless - the use of soap, scrubbing and fresh air - while others sound, well, from a bygone era.

"The open type of fireplace is not only cheerful," reads the chapter on Isolation Methods, "but affords a simple and expeditious means of the disposal of soiled swabs and other small fomites." Fomites? What on Earth are fomites? According to Google, they are objects likely to carry infection, like clothes, kitchen utensils and furniture. "Carpets, hangings and upholstered articles are removed. Plain washable furniture is most suitable for the sick room." Advice that probably still holds good today.
bbc  news  stories  history  health 
yesterday by ndf
Coronavirus: Things the US has got wrong - and got right - BBC News
US & Canada

## Coronavirus: Things the US has got wrong - and got right ##

Anthony Zurcher
North America reporter
@awzurcheron Twitter
1 April 2020

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Related TopicsCoronavirus pandemic


It has been more than two months since the first case of coronavirus was diagnosed in the US. Since then, the outbreak has spread across the nation, with more than 236,000 cases and over 5,600 deaths.

The US is now the global epicentre of the pandemic, surpassing the number of reported cases in China, where the virus began, and Italy, the hardest-hit European nation.

Although public health officials report that the peak of the outbreak in the US is still weeks, perhaps months, away, shortcomings in the US response - as well as some strengths - have already become apparent.

Here's a look at some of them.
bbc  news  covid-19  USA 
4 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Five ways virus upheaval is hitting women in Asia - BBC News

# Coronavirus: Five ways virus upheaval is hitting women in Asia #

By Lara Owen

Women's Affairs East Asia, BBC World Service
8 March 2020
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Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Since its outbreak in China, the coronavirus has killed or infected tens of thousands of people across Asia, and is spreading worldwide.

As well as the health battle, the social impact of the virus is significant and across Asia, it is women who are being disproportionately affected.

"Crisis always exacerbates gender inequality," says Maria Holtsberg, humanitarian and disaster risk advisor at UN Women Asia and Pacific.

Here are five ways that women in Asia are bearing the brunt of the upheaval.

1. School closures
"I have been at home for over three weeks now with the kids," says journalist and mother-of-two Sung So-young.

She lives in South Korea, which recently announced it was postponing the start of the new school year by an additional two weeks, so children won't return to class until 23 March.
bbc  news  asia  covid-19  society 
9 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: The month everything changed - BBC News

# Coronavirus: The month everything changed #

By Jon Kelly
BBC Stories
28 March 2020
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In the space of a month, the United Kingdom has transformed beyond recognition. And most of us haven't had time to stop and take stock.

One Friday afternoon, when the UK was another country, a chalkboard leaned against the outside wall of a country pub. A message had been written in neat, thin capital letters.

"Unfortunately a customer who visited us has tested positive for the coronavirus," it read. "So as a precautionary measure we are closing for a full deep clean." It was signed by the landlord and landlady, who apologised for the inconvenience.

The pub was located along a quiet, narrow road just outside Haslemere in Surrey. The patient who had gone there lived somewhere in the county. Unlike previous British cases detected up to that point - he was the 20th - he hadn't been abroad recently. As far as anyone knew, he was the first to catch the virus inside the UK.

On the same day, 28 February 2020, came another news update. A grimmer milestone. A British man who'd been infected on the Diamond Princess cruise ship became the first UK citizen to die, in Japan, from Covid-19.

That afternoon, children were still in classrooms and adults were still at work. People shook hands and hugged and kissed. In the evening, they went to pubs and restaurants. Some went on dates and others visited elderly relatives. They assembled in groups and mingled with residents of other households.
bbc  news  covid-19  photos  story 
9 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Creativity, kindness and canals offer hope amid outbreak - BBC News

# Coronavirus: Creativity, kindness and canals offer hope amid outbreak #

21 March 2020
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Image copyrightAFP
Image caption
The virus has spurred acts of kindness around the world

We appreciate that these are dark times for people around the world, as the coronavirus continues to spread. Numbers of infections and fatalities are rising, cities and even countries are shutting and many people are being forced into isolation. But amid all the worrying news, there have also been reasons to find hope.

1. Pollution drops
As countries go into lockdown over the virus, there have been significant drops in pollution levels.

Both China and northern Italy have recorded major falls in nitrogen dioxide - a serious air pollutant and powerful warming chemical - amid reduced industrial activity and car journeys.
bbc  news  world  environment 
15 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Boy uses pocket money to donate toilet rolls - BBC News

# Coronavirus: Boy uses pocket money to donate toilet rolls #

17 March 2020
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Image caption
Jimmy-Dean Hudson decided to help his neighbours by delivering toilet roll
A seven-year-old boy has been delivering free toilet rolls to his elderly neighbours as panic-buying has seen some supermarket shelves emptied of household goods.

Jimmy-Dean Hudson, from Westcliff, in Southend, said he wanted to help people by spending his pocket money on the bathroom staple.

His mother Tracy Hudson said those he had helped were extremely grateful.

Jimmy said following the success he next planned to deliver milk and bread.
bbc  news  goodnews 
15 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: 'Unprecedented scenes' on Welsh hills - BBC News
# Coronavirus: 'Unprecedented scenes' on Welsh hills #

50 minutes ago
Related TopicsCoronavirus pandemic

Image caption
The car park was packed at Pen-y-Pass in Snowdonia on Saturday

Car parks and trails could be shut to stop people from visiting Snowdonia National Park after "unprecedented scenes" on Saturday, according to bosses.

There were so many people on mountain summits it was "impossible to maintain effective social distancing".

Pen y Fan in the Brecon Beacons was also busy with visitors on Saturday.

Welsh ministers are considering their legal powers to force people to stay away during the coronavirus outbreak.

It comes as seven more people in Wales died after contracting the virus, taking the total number of deaths to 12.

Coronavirus in Wales: Live updates on the outbreak
bbc  news  wales  health 
16 days ago by ndf
My autism led me to become a champion of outsiders | Life and style | The Guardian
Self and wellbeing Autism

# My autism led me to become a champion of outsiders #

Charlotte Amelia Poe grew up knowing she was different. Now it’s her mission – through her art and writing – to bring about change

Joanna Moorhead

Sat 14 Mar 2020 17.00 GMT


‘You become very fixated on something – it’s helpful when you’re writing a book for example, because you can write 20,000 words in a day’: Charlotte Amelia Poe. Photograph: Antonio Olmos/The Observer
For artist and writer Charlotte Amelia Poe, 30, every day feels like a walk across a frozen pond. “It’s how it’s always been,” she explains. “You’re trying to navigate it and stay safe, but you’re aware that at any moment the ice is likely to crack, and at that point you will sink into the water.”

The worst of it is that, when she feels that way, she has no idea how she can avoid going under. “You think you’re doing fine and you’re treading carefully enough not to crack the ice. But suddenly you’ve gone under. You’ve got it completely wrong – and you’ve no idea why.”

Poe is describing how it feels to be autistic. She wants the rest of us to understand, she says, because it really matters, perhaps more than it’s ever mattered (of which more later). Her mission to break open the mystery of how it feels to be autistic has already been impressively successful: last year she won the Spectrum art prize for her video piece How To Be Autistic and recently she wrote a book of the same name. Her hope is that, by opening up about her own journey through childhood, school and adolescence, she can change other people’s perceptions and expectations about what autism is like, from the inside.
autism  guardian  news  disability  cognition  society  campaign 
21 days ago by ndf
Trump’s coronavirus ban on travel from the EU is backfiring already | Jonathan Freedland | Opinion | The Guardian
Opinion Coronavirus outbreak

# Trump’s coronavirus ban on travel from the EU is backfiring already #

Jonathan Freedland
A live televised address from the Oval Office should have reassured the US. Instead it sowed chaos
Thu 12 Mar 2020 13.21 GMTLast modified on Thu 12 Mar 2020 19.10 GMT

Donald Trump addresses the nation from the Oval Office of the White House, 11 March 2020. Photograph: Reuters
Such is the reverse Midas touch of Donald Trump, that his attempt last night to face facts, steady nerves and reassure the public succeeded in spreading panic, sowing confusion and ratcheting up the anxiety.

The fact that Trump delivered a rare, live televised address to the nation should, by itself, have induced calm. It suggested that the president was moving out of fantasyland, abandoning the denial that had led him to promise a miracle was on the way and that the threat of coronavirus was likely to recede as soon as next month, when the weather got warmer. (As recently as Tuesday, he was saying, “It will go away, just stay calm.”)
guardian  news  USA 
21 days ago by ndf
'You ruined my premiere!': Beckinsale recalls Weinstein's obscenity-filled rant | Film | The Guardian
Kate Beckinsale

# 'You ruined my premiere!': Beckinsale recalls Weinstein's obscenity-filled rant #

Kate Beckinsale claims disgraced movie mogul was enraged when she wore white suit rather than ‘tight dress’ to New York premiere shortly after 9/11

Andrew Pulver

Thu 12 Mar 2020 13.06 GMTLast modified on Thu 12 Mar 2020 16.11 GMT

Kate Beckinsale in October. Photograph: Jason Mendez/Invision/AP
Kate Beckinsale has described an obscenity-filled rant by Harvey Weinstein in which he allegedly called her “stupid fucking cunt” after he objected to her choice of outfit for a film premiere in 2001.

In a post on social media, Beckinsale outlined events after a screening for the romcom Serendipity, in which she starred opposite John Cusack. She said Weinstein insisted on holding the premiere only a few weeks after the 9/11 attacks, calling it “the most insensitive, tone deaf, disrespectful idea possible”. Beckinsale said Weinstein had arranged for her to visit his home with her two-year-old daughter, and then launched a tirade at her when they were alone.
guardian  news 
21 days ago by ndf
I’m an epidemiologist. When I heard about Britain’s ‘herd immunity’ coronavirus plan, I thought it was satire | William Hanage | Opinion | The Guardian
Opinion Coronavirus outbreak

# I’m an epidemiologist. When I heard about Britain’s ‘herd immunity’ coronavirus plan, I thought it was satire #

William Hanage
Vulnerable people should not be exposed to Covid-19 right now in the service of a hypothetical future

• See all our coronavirus coverage
Sun 15 Mar 2020 12.33 GMTLast modified on Sun 15 Mar 2020 17.45 GMT

Patients in a temporary overflow building at Brescia hospital, Italy. ‘In Italy, the choices of whom to save and whom to allow to die are real.’ Photograph: Miguel Medina/AFP via Getty Images

Your house is on fire, and the people whom you have trusted with your care are not trying to put it out. Even though they knew it was coming, and could see what happened to the neighbours as they were overwhelmed with terrifying speed, the UK government has inexplicably chosen to encourage the flames, in the misguided notion that somehow they will be able to control them.

When I first heard about this, I could not believe it. I research and teach the evolution and epidemiology of infectious disease at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health. My colleagues here in the US, even as they are reeling from the stumbling response of the Donald Trump administration to the crisis, assumed that reports of the UK policy were satire – an example of the wry humour for which the country is famed. But they are all too real.
guardian  health  uk  opinion  news 
23 days ago by ndf
Trump 'offers large sums' for exclusive access to coronavirus vaccine | US news | The Guardian
Donald Trump

# Trump 'offers large sums' for exclusive access to coronavirus vaccine #

German government tries to fight off aggressive takeover bid by US, say reports

Coronavirus – live coverage
See all our coronavirus coverage
Philip Oltermann in Berlin

Sun 15 Mar 2020 14.12 GMTLast modified on Sun 15 Mar 2020 18.23 GMT

A researcher at the German biopharmaceutical company CureVac demonstrates work on a vaccine for the coronavirus at its laboratory in Tübingen. Photograph: Andreas Gebert/Reuters
The Trump administration has offered a German medical company “large sums of money” for exclusive access to a Covid-19 vaccine, German media have reported.

The German government is trying to fight off what it sees as an aggressive takeover bid by the US, the broadsheet Die Welt reports, citing German government circles.

The US president had offered the Tübingen-based biopharmaceutical company CureVac “large sums of money” to gain exclusive access to their work, wrote Die Welt.

How can I protect myself from the coronavirus outbreak?

According to an anonymous source quoted in the newspaper, Trump was doing everything to secure a vaccine against the coronavirus for the US, “but for the US only”.
guardian  usa  health  politics  competition  news 
23 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Scientists say UK virus strategy is 'risking lives' - BBC News
SEE ::~

Science & Environment

# Coronavirus: Scientists say UK virus strategy is 'risking lives' #

By Pallab Ghosh
Science correspondent
25 minutes ago

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Image copyrightREUTERS
Image caption

Architects of the UK's nuanced approach: Sir Patrick Vallance (left) and Prof Chris Whitty (right)

Hundreds of scientists have written to the government urging them to introduce tougher measures to tackle the spread of Covid-19.

In an open letter, a group of 229 scientists from UK universities say the government's current approach will put the NHS under additional stress and "risk many more lives than necessary".

The signatories also criticised comments made by Sir Patrick Vallance, the government's chief scientific adviser, about managing the spread of the infection to make the population immune.

The scientists also questioned the government's view that people will become fed up with restrictions if they were imposed too soon.

The letter was published on the day it was announced 10 more people in the UK have died after testing positive for coronavirus, bringing the total number of deaths to 21.

Downing Street said the "next planned interventions" would be put in place soon "as the epidemic progresses".
bbc  news  health  science 
24 days ago by ndf
Donald Trump is the very worst person to handle the coronavirus crisis | World news | The Guardian
Coronavirus outbreak

# Donald Trump is the very worst person to handle the coronavirus crisis #

The president responded to the pandemic with denial and blaming foreigners. His incompetence and selfishness will be lethal

Julian Borger in Washington

Thu 12 Mar 2020 18.39 GMTLast modified on Thu 12 Mar 2020 18.42 GMT

Donald Trump addressed the nation from behind the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office for only the second time. The first was to announce the Mexican border wall. Photograph: Doug Mills/AFP via Getty Images

Coronavirus is the first major crisis Donald Trump has faced that is not of his own making. People who know what it is like to be in charge when disaster strikes have warned us this moment would come eventually – and we can now see why they were so terrified.

Trump in a time of coronavirus is a lethal combination. Everything about the president – his reliance on his gut instincts in place of expertise, his overwhelming selfishness, and his unfailing tendency to lash out at others when things go wrong – make him the worst person imaginable to hold the world’s most powerful job in the face of pandemic.

Confronting the threat requires global cooperation, perhaps more than at any time since the second world war. But Trump and his junior imitators around the world have taken a sledgehammer to the very notion of international solidarity.

Coronavirus: EU condemns Trump travel ban as Italy death toll passes 1,000
Read more

America’s closest allies were given no notice of his decision on Wednesday night to suspend flights from Europe. The EU mission in Washington only found out about it when journalists started calling.

The president has dealt with coronavirus the same way he approached every other challenge in his administration, first trying denial – and when that failed, blaming outsiders. The disease has slid from a Democratic “hoax” to the “foreign virus”. It came as little surprise that his speech had been written by Stephen Miller, author of the administration’s cruellest anti-immigration policies.
guardian  news  health  USA 
24 days ago by ndf
'He's an idiot': critics say Trump has failed the US in this test of reassurance | World news | The Guardian
Coronavirus outbreak

# 'He's an idiot': critics say Trump has failed the US in this test of reassurance #

For Trump, who has spent years undermining experts, scientists, and trust in government, the pandemic has shown his weaknesses

David Smith in Washington

Sat 14 Mar 2020 06.00 GMTLast modified on Sat 14 Mar 2020 13.00 GMT

Donald Trump, a germaphobe and gut instinct politician, has found his missteps exposed by the coronavirus outbreak. Photograph: Alex Brandon/AP

It was just before 9am and the sky was overcast when a small group of reporters were suddenly ushered through the White House’s south portico. They gathered in the diplomatic reception room, once home to Franklin Roosevelt’s “fireside chats”, and stared at a desk with pen, documents and the presidential seal.

Donald Trump strode in, wearing a black bomber jacket and white shirt unbuttoned at the top, and settled down beneath a portrait of George Washington. He signed a congressional emergency spending bill to combat the coronavirus for $8.3bn – more than three times what the president himself had requested – and held it up to a chorus of clicking cameras.

“We’re doing very well,” he insisted. “But it’s an unforeseen problem. What a problem. Came out of nowhere, but we’re taking care of it.” He gazed around the oval-shaped room, wallpapered romantic American landscapes, and took questions. Someone asked: “How do you keep people from panicking?” Trump’s response in part: “Calm. You have to be calm. It’ll go away.”

It has not gone away.
guardian  news  US  health  politics 
24 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Three reasons why the UK might not look like Italy - BBC News
Coronavirus: Three reasons why the UK might not look like Italy
By Robert Cuffe
Head of statistics
1 hour ago
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Related TopicsCoronavirus outbreak
Image copyrightREUTERS
Much of Italy is currently in lockdown as the country's tally of coronavirus deaths has topped 1,000.

The outbreak is putting the Italian healthcare service under immense strain. But will the UK follow this path?

On Thursday, Boris Johnson's chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance, said the UK was four weeks behind Italy "in terms of the scale of the outbreak" if not "in terms of the response".

Does that mean we're four weeks away from a similar fate?

Not necessarily. Here are three reasons why experts believe the UK's epidemic could be different from Italy's, and why the number of cases here means something different.

1. Different early transmission
bbc  news  europe  health 
25 days ago by ndf
Late easter eggs | Help | The Guardian
Inside the Guardian blog

# Late easter eggs #

Sean Clarke

Fri 11 Apr 2008 17.08 BSTFirst published on Fri 11 Apr 2008 17.08 BST

It's the weekend, and you've been good, so here's a little plaything. Among the features of our new look is the ability to make up a url combing two "tags" to see if we have any articles or videos matching the combination. For instance, you could see how much crossover there is between our coverage of the Labour party and climate change by checking at this url:

Or, and this is one we use a lot ourselves, find the latest comment pieces we have about Google, say:

It also works for individual contributors; just now I checked what our sports writer Richard Williams had offered us recently about cinema, and found, to my delight, a piece about the Argentinian musician Astor Piazzola:

If that's a bit specialised, here are some (hopefully self-explanatory) crowd-pleasers:

You can mix and match these and other combinations to your heart's content if you can see the pattern. Don't worry if you can't; we don't expect people to understand how to make the combinations, but on the other hand we're happy if you can figure it out. If there's interest, I'll write again explaining the rules.
rss  guardian  news  easter-egg  Blog 
27 days ago by ndf
Coronavirus: A problem unlike anything else Trump has faced - BBC News
# Coronavirus: A problem unlike anything else Trump has faced

Jon Sopel
North America editor
@bbcjonsopelon Twitter
9 hours ago
... Share
Related TopicsCoronavirus outbreak

Media caption"Every one of these doctors said: 'How do you know so much about this?'"

There are two numbers that Donald Trump has consistently cared about and watched like a hawk. And, in his mind, they are inextricably linked.

The first is his approval ratings. Nothing unusual in that. Ever since the end of World War Two and Gallup introducing its regular polling on this, every president from Harry Truman onwards has kept a wary eye on how they are being seen by the great American public - that is normal.

The second figure is the stock market. While other presidents have seen that as a barometer to keep a watch on, no-one has obsessed about Wall Street like Donald Trump. Or if they have, they haven't provided a running commentary in quite the same way that he has.
bbc  news  usa  health 
28 days ago by ndf
Electric cars are coming: but where will you recharge? - BBC News

# Electric cars are coming: but where will you recharge? #

By Chris Baraniuk
Technology of Business reporter
6 March 2020

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Image copyrightTIFFANY SNOWDEN
Image caption
The Snowdens can't always charge their car outside their house

They've got the only electric car in the village. Tiffany Snowden and her husband bought their second-hand Nissan Leaf a few weeks ago and love it. It's smooth to drive and, she says, "It's got quite a lot of power to it". But there's a problem. It's a pain to charge up.

That's because, in the North Yorkshire hamlet where they live, it's a race home every night to get a parking space outside their house. If they succeed, they can plug the car in to mains electricity overnight. If they fail, the options are limited.

"The closest charging point to us is about 10 miles away," says Mrs Snowden.

bbc  news  electric  EV 
4 weeks ago by ndf
BBC News - News feeds from the BBC
10 January 2011 Last updated at 11:31 | Share this page | FacebookTwitterEmailPrint

# News feeds from the BBC #

## What are News Feeds?

Continue reading the main story

Popular BBC News Feeds

* Top Stories
* World
* UK
* Business
* Politics
* Health
Education & Family
Science & Environment
* Technology
* Entertainment & Arts

News feeds allow you to see when websites have added new content. You can get the latest headlines and video in one place, as soon as it's published, without having to visit the websites you have taken the feed from.

Feeds are generally known as RSS ('Really Simple Syndication') which are just web pages, designed to be read by computers rather than people.

BBC News provides feeds for both the desktop website as well as for our mobile site and the most popular feeds are listed here.

You can also access RSS feeds directly from pages on the site - the orange RSS icon will appear when a feed is available.

## How do I start using feeds?

The RSS Icon.
You will need one of the following to read RSS feeds:

### Modern web browser

bbc  rss  api  news 
4 weeks ago by ndf
Track Cycling World Championships - Laura Kenny on omnium crash - BBC Sport
# 'Blood was gushing from my face but I wasn't going to give up' - Kenny #

28 Feb 2020 | 28 Feb 2020 | From the sectionCycling

Great Britain's Laura Kenny says she was determined not to give up after crashing and cutting her face during the omnium scratch race at the Track Cycling World Championships.

The two-time Olympic and world onmium champion needed stitches but went completed the event, finishing 12th.

Read More: Laura Kenny: Briton finishes 12th in World Track Championships omnium after crash

Watch coverage of the Track Cycling World Championships on BBC Two, BBC Four, BBC Red Button, BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport website and app and through Connected TVs.

Available to UK users only.

Share this post on
Read more about these links.

Top videos
bbc  sport  video  news 
5 weeks ago by ndf
Leah Croucher's parents renew appeal a year after she vanished | UK news | The Guardian
Milton Keynes

# Leah Croucher's parents renew appeal a year after she vanished #

Teenager went missing while walking to work in Milton Keynes in February 2019

PA Media

Fri 14 Feb 2020 09.41 GMTLast modified on Fri 14 Feb 2020 10.44 GMT

Leah Croucher’s sister Jade, left, and parents John and Claire address the media at Milton Keynes police station. Photograph: Jacob King/PA
The parents of missing Leah Croucher, who disappeared a year ago, have spoken of how their family has been destroyed as they pleaded with anyone who might have information to “do the decent thing” and come forward.

Police say they are unable to rule out that Croucher came to harm after she “effectively vanished into thin air” in Milton Keynes while on her way to work.

Then aged 19, she was last spotted at about 8.15am on Buzzacott Lane, in the Furzton area, on 15 February 2019.

Leah Croucher.
Claire and John Croucher questioned why their daughter would “just disappear” and said they feared she had been abducted, in an anniversary appeal.

“Every day I feel like I’ve given up hope, and it’s a big struggle to get that hope back,” Claire Croucher said. “It’s more and more difficult because, if someone took Leah for example, she’s suffering for 365 days and no one wants that for their child.”

She spoke of how her family’s heartbreak was compounded after the death of Leah’s brother, who she said found the disappearance of his sister “very difficult”.
guardian  news  miltonkeynes  MK 
7 weeks ago by ndf
Coronavirus: Milton Keynes Information - Kents Hill Park
# Coronavirus: Milton Keynes Information #


Around 150 British Citizens are being flown from Wuhan City in China, the epicentre of the current outbreak of Novel Coronavirus, back to the United Kingdom on Sunday 9 February.

Everyone being repatriated will be assessed before boarding the plane in China, monitored during the flight and will continue to be monitored after landing in the UK.

A facility at Kents Hill Park in Milton Keynes is being used to house these returning citizens and they will remain at the site in isolation for 14 days.  During this time their health will be regularly assessed.

This is the second facility of this type that has been set up in the UK following the successful repatriation to Arrowe Park Hospital in the Wirral last month.

The isolation of the guests in Milton Keynes is being undertaken as a highly precautionary measure as they have been at the epicentre of the outbreak and at increased risk of exposure to the virus.

The presence of this group in Milton Keynes does not present any risk to local people. No one showing symptoms of the novel coronavirus infection (2019-nCoV) would have been allowed to board the plane when it was in China.

During their time in Milton Keynes, the group will be regularly assessed by highly experienced healthcare professionals and will be provided with support to meet any social and emotional needs during their stay. All staff working at the facility will be wearing appropriate protective equipment at all times. Anyone showing symptoms of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) will be assessed and if appropriate undergo testing for the virus.

The local site has been chosen because it offers appropriate accommodation and other facilities for those coming back from Wuhan while they stay in Milton Keynes. It also allows their health to be regularly monitored and has the necessary medical facilities close at hand should they be required.

The process of repatriation has been led by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, with the advice of the Chief Medical Officer, and the support of the Department of Health and Social Care, the NHS and Public Health England.

The UK is well prepared for these types of incidents and there is rapid and effective testing undertaken by PHE available for this virus. The NHS has expert teams of highly-trained staff and specialist hospital units around the country ready to receive and care for any patients with any highly infectious disease. The NHS adheres to the highest safety standards for the protection of its staff, patients and the public.

Based on current evidence, Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) presents with flu-like symptoms including a fever, a cough, or difficulty breathing. The current evidence is that most cases appear to be mild.

There is more information and advice on Novel Coronavirus on the Government’s website at

The Multi-agency response team will be regularly updating this briefing for partners.


## Frequently asked questions ##

Are staff entering the facility where the groups are being kept required to wear full PPE?
Staff entering the facility are taking appropriate infection prevention and control precautions including wearing appropriate PPE.
news  miltonkeynes  MK 
8 weeks ago by ndf
‘Nearly impossible to escape’: the ‘forever chemicals’ fueling a public health crisis | Society | The Guardian
## ‘Nearly impossible to escape’: the ‘forever chemicals’ fueling a public health crisis

About 700 PFAS-contaminated sites have been identified across the US while those exposed to enough chemicals can face devastating health consequences

Tom Perkins

Mon 3 Feb 2020 10.00 GMTLast modified on Mon 3 Feb 2020 10.02 GMT

Recent tests revelaed dangerous levels of PFAS in rain, a range of foods and sewage sludge that farmers spread on cropland as fertilizer. Photograph: Peter Foley/EPA

In 2002, the French multinational Saint-Gobain boosted production of chemically weatherproofed fabrics that it produced in its Merrimack, New Hampshire, plant. Soon after, serious health problems began hitting residents living near the facility.

The Merrimack Citizens for Clean Water (MCCW) advocacy group says people there suffer from high levels of cancer, cardiovascular issues, autoimmune disorders, kidney disease and developmental disorders. That includes an alarming number of children facing rare and aggressive cancers, said MCCW’s Laurene Allen, who lives in the city of about 30,000 that sits an hour north of Boston.

Why you need to know about PFAS, the chemicals in pizza boxes and rainwear
Read more
Residents suspected Teflon and other PFAS used in Sant-Gobain’s fabrics were to blame, and testing appears to confirm that: officials have identified 34 PFAS in concentrations as high as 70,000 parts per trillion (ppt) throughout a 65-mile area around the plant. New Hampshire’s groundwater limit is 12ppt.

MCCW has been pushing for Saint-Gobain to fund a clean-up, but Allen said the state and company’s responses have been inadequate. The situation, she added, amounts to “insanity”.
guardian  news  health  USA 
9 weeks ago by ndf
What can doctors do for your back pain? Not as much as you can | Ranjana Srivastava | Opinion | The Guardian
# What can doctors do for your back pain? Not as much as you can

Ranjana Srivastava

Opioids don’t work. Surgery and injections rarely do, and scans are unnecessary. Better to get moving

Mon 3 Feb 2020 03.27 GMTLast modified on Mon 3 Feb 2020 07.32 GMT

‘Patients feel cheated when the neighbour, colleague and spouse seem to obtain an immediate MRI, a script for morphine, and a neurosurgery referral.’ Photograph: baona/Getty Images/iStockphoto

“I’m sorry you’re in pain.”

“You have no idea,” she growls. She is a middle-aged, obese woman with chronic back pain admitted to hospital for the third time in a year.

“Will you at least talk to the physio?”

She has stayed put in bed, refusing to move, and the nurses are tired.

“No, he can take you for a walk.”

This isn’t going well, I rue.

Back pain: how to live with one of the world’s biggest health problems
Read more
“And you won’t increase my morphine!” she harrumphs.

“I’d like to manage your pain in other ways. Opioids don’t help in this situation and there can be serious side effects.”
guardian  news  health 
9 weeks ago by ndf
Skype audio graded by workers in China with 'no security measures' | Technology | The Guardian

# Skype audio graded by workers in China with 'no security measures' #

Exclusive: former Microsoft contractor says he was emailed login after minimal vetting

Alex Hern | @alexhern

Fri 10 Jan 2020 10.50 GMTLast modified on Fri 10 Jan 2020 10.55 GMT

Workers were given generic passwords and had no cybersecurity help to protect sensitive recordings, the former contractor said. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA

A Microsoft programme to transcribe and vet audio from Skype and Cortana, its voice assistant, ran for years with “no security measures”, according to a former contractor who says he reviewed thousands of potentially sensitive recordings on his personal laptop from his home in Beijing over the two years he worked for the company.

The recordings, both deliberate and accidentally invoked activations of the voice assistant, as well as some Skype phone calls, were simply accessed by Microsoft workers through a web app running in Google’s Chrome browser, on their personal laptops, over the Chinese internet, according to the contractor.

Workers had no cybersecurity help to protect the data from criminal or state interference, and were even instructed to do the work using new Microsoft accounts all with the same password, for ease of management, the former contractor said. Employee vetting was practically nonexistent, he added.

“There were no security measures, I don’t even remember them doing proper KYC [know your customer] on me. I think they just took my Chinese bank account details,” he told the Guardian.

guardian  security  news  microsoft  speech  recognition 
12 weeks ago by ndf
Fresh Cambridge Analytica leak ‘shows global manipulation is out of control’ | UK news | The Guardian
The Observer Cambridge Analytica

## Fresh Cambridge Analytica leak ‘shows global manipulation is out of control’

Company’s work in 68 countries laid bare with release of more than 100,000 documents

Carole Cadwalladr

Sat 4 Jan 2020 16.55 GMT


Brittany Kaiser, the then director of program development at Cambridge Analytica, takes part in a press briefing by Leave.EU in London on November 18, 2015. Photograph: Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
An explosive leak of tens of thousands of documents from the defunct data firm Cambridge Analytica is set to expose the inner workings of the company that collapsed after the Observer revealed it had misappropriated 87 million Facebook profiles.

More than 100,000 documents relating to work in 68 countries that will lay bare the global infrastructure of an operation used to manipulate voters on “an industrial scale” is set to be released over the next months.

It comes as Christopher Steele, the ex-head of MI6’s Russia desk and the intelligence expert behind the so-called “Steele dossier” into Trump’s relationship with Russia, said that while the company had closed down, the failure to properly punish bad actors meant that the prospects for manipulation of the US election this year were even worse.

The release of documents began on New Year’s Day on an anonymous Twitter account, @HindsightFiles, with links to material on elections in Malaysia, Kenya and Brazil. The documents were revealed to have come from Brittany Kaiser, an ex-Cambridge Analytica employee turned whistleblower, and to be the same ones subpoeaned by Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Kaiser, who starred in the Oscar-shortlisted Netflix documentary The Great Hack, decided to go public after last month’s election in Britain. “It’s so abundantly clear our electoral systems are wide open to abuse,” she said. “I’m very fearful about what is going to happen in the US election later this year, and I think one of the few ways of protecting ourselves is to get as much information out there as possible.”
guardian  news  politics  observer  carolecadwalla 
january 2020 by ndf
Will Dominic Cummings and his ‘weirdos and misfits’ really fix the civil service? | Jonathan Portes | Opinion | The Guardian
Opinion Civil service

# Will Dominic Cummings and his ‘weirdos and misfits’ really fix the civil service? #

Jonathan Portes

There are problems with the way Whitehall operates. But this reforming zeal may be better directed towards ministers

• Jonathan Portes was a member of Tony Blair’s Performance and Innovation Unit
Fri 3 Jan 2020 11.13 GMTLast modified on Fri 3 Jan 2020 14.40 GMT

Dominic Cummings. ‘Does he really intend to project-manage HS2 and the delivery of new local bus services from Downing Street?’ Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images

The civil service is based on the “cult of the generalist”, mandarins who move far too frequently from job to job and are never in post long enough to be held accountable for the success or failure of the projects they manage. And they’re out of touch with the public. At the same time, the public sector undervalues scientists and other specialists.

That’s the argument of Rachel Wolf, part-author of the Conservative manifesto, who wrote in the Telegraph this week about Dominic Cummings’ plans for a Whitehall “revolution”. But it’s also the argument of the Fulton report, perhaps the most famous attempt to reform the civil service, published over half a century ago (and two decades before I joined the Treasury).

guardian  uk  news 
january 2020 by ndf
Why Iain Duncan Smith knighthood was ‘slap in the face’ | Politics | The Guardian
Iain Duncan Smith

Why Iain Duncan Smith knighthood was ‘slap in the face’

Stephen Pacey judged benefits cases for 30 years and sees ex-minister as Mr Universal Credit

Helen Pidd North of England editor

Fri 3 Jan 2020 13.04 GMTLast modified on Fri 3 Jan 2020 14.55 GMT

Stephen Pacey’s letter saying Iain Duncan Smith should have declined his award went viral. Photograph: Fabio De Paola/The Guardian

The new year honours list is a reliable source of controversy, with perennial outrage about the worthiness of the recipients.

But the knighthood given to the former work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith has been particularly unpopular, with more than 237,000 people signing a petition objecting to the award for a man “responsible for some of the cruellest, most extreme welfare reforms this country has ever seen”.

One person with decades of experience adjudicating on the benefits system was especially appalled. “As a retired social security commissioner and upper tribunal judge, I spent a lifetime hearing thousands of appeals of decisions made by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP),” wrote Stephen Pacey in a letter to the Guardian.
guardian  news  uk 
january 2020 by ndf
V-c sees OU as ‘beacon’ for virtues of comprehensive universities | Times Higher Education (THE)
# V-c sees OU as ‘beacon’ for virtues of comprehensive universities

Tim Blackman also sees green shoots for part-time higher education in Wales that could nourish revival in England

December 19, 2019
By John Morgan
Twitter: @johncmorgan3
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Source: BBC

Leading lights: Tim Blackman says OU academics’ work on Blue Planet II helped to ‘mobilise the public’
The Open University’s new vice-chancellor, Tim Blackman, sees the institution as a “beacon” demonstrating the virtues of a comprehensive university, and he detects in Wales green shoots for part-time higher education that could be transplanted to nourish revival in England.

Labour’s Baroness Lee, one of the OU’s founders, envisaged it as “a great independent university” open to all, “which does not insult any man or woman whatever their background by offering them the second best: nothing but the best is good enough”.

But the outlook for one of the great collectivist British institutions of the post-war era has often been suboptimal in recent years: a collapse in part-time and mature student numbers across England after the increase in tuition fees in 2012 that created deep financial deficits; then the 2018 resignation of Peter Horrocks as vice-chancellor amid staff opposition to plans to cut courses and jobs as part of a £100 million savings drive.
ou  THE  news  TimBlackman 
december 2019 by ndf
AI expert calls for end to UK use of ‘racially biased’ algorithms | Technology | The Guardian
Artificial intelligence (AI)

AI expert calls for end to UK use of ‘racially biased’ algorithms

Prof Noel Sharkey says systems so infected with biases they cannot be trusted

Henry McDonald

Thu 12 Dec 2019 14.07 GMTLast modified on Thu 12 Dec 2019 21.20 GMT

Facial recognition technology has also come under scrutiny. Photograph: Fanatic Studio/Gary Waters/Getty/Collection Mix: Subjects RF
An expert on artificial intelligence has called for all algorithms that make life-changing decisions – in areas from job applications to immigration into the UK – to be halted immediately.

Prof Noel Sharkey, who is also a leading figure in a global campaign against “killer robots”, said algorithms were so “infected with biases” that their decision-making processes could not be fair or trusted.

A moratorium must be imposed on all “life-changing decision-making algorithms” in Britain, he said.

'We are hurtling towards a surveillance state’: the rise of facial recognition technology
Read more
Sharkey has suggested testing AI decision-making machines in the same way as new pharmaceutical drugs are vigorously checked before they are allowed on to the market.

In an interview with the Guardian, the Sheffield University robotics/AI pioneer said he was deeply concerned over a series of examples of machine-learning systems being loaded with bias.
ai  ethics  guardian  news  chatbot  ADMINS  culture  society 
december 2019 by ndf
Flash & The Future of Interactive Content | Adobe Blog
Flash & The Future of Interactive Content
What to expect when converting Flash to HTML5

Accessible PDFs in Acrobat DC: Tagging Content as an Artifact

by Adobe Corporate Communications
POSTED ON 07-25-2017

Adobe has long played a leadership role in advancing interactivity and creative content – from video, to games and more – on the web. Where we’ve seen a need to push content and interactivity forward, we’ve innovated to meet those needs. Where a format didn’t exist, we invented one – such as with Flash and Shockwave. And over time, as the web evolved, these new formats were adopted by the community, in some cases formed the basis for open standards, and became an essential part of the web.


Given this progress, and in collaboration with several of our technology partners – including Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Mozilla – Adobe is planning to end-of-life Flash. Specifically, we will stop updating and distributing the Flash Player at the end of 2020 and encourage content creators to migrate any existing Flash content to these new open formats.

adobe  flash  html5  video  blog  news  2020 
november 2019 by ndf
Professor John Curtice Makes Surprising Prediction For General Election 2019 - LBC
29 October 2019, 14:20

The UK's leading election expert Sir John Curtice told LBC he expects parties other than the two major ones to have a record number of MPs in the upcoming General Election.

The UK is expected to go to the polls on 12th December after Jeremy Corbyn told Labour MPs to back Boris Johnson's proposal for an early General Election.

Sir John is the man who predicted Brexit and has been in charge of the accurate exit polls in the recent elections in 2015 and 2017.

And speaking to Shelagh Fogarty, he gave a surprising prediction of what we can expect.

He said: "I think the safest prediction is that we will have a record number of non-Conservative and non-Labour MPs in this parliament.

"The SNP look set to win the vast majority of seats in Scotland. The Liberal Democrats given their position in the polls should do extremely well. We expect Caroline Lucas and the Green Party to hang on to her seat.

"We could have more than 100 MPs that do not belong to either of the other two parties.

Shelagh Fogarty spoke to Sir John Curtice about the upcoming election. Picture: LBC
"That matters for two reasons. The first is that it makes it difficult for either Conservative or Labour to win an overall majority if you're taking the fact that 100 of the seats are already spoken for.

"Secondly, it matters because this is an asymmetric election. It's an election that Boris Johnson has to win. If he does not get a majority or something very close to it, he will not be able to stay in government because the Conservatives do not have any friends elsewhere.

"The Labour Party, by contrast, at least has the possibility of doing a deal with the SNP, a deal with the Liberal Democrats, getting support of the Greens and maybe even the DUP not standing in their way.
october 2019 by ndf
Bye bye Mongo, Hello Postgres | Digital blog | Info | The Guardian
In April the Guardian switched off the Mongo DB cluster used to store our content after completing a migration to PostgreSQL on Amazon RDS. This post covers why and how

Philip McMahon, Maria-Livia Chiorean, Susie Coleman and Akash Askoolum

Fri 30 Nov 2018 10.36 GMTLast modified on Wed 11 Sep 2019 11.34 BST

An elephant picking up some greenery. Photograph: Michael Sohn/AP
At the Guardian, the majority of content – including articles, live blogs, galleries and video content – is produced in our in-house CMS tool, Composer. This, until recently, was backed by a Mongo DB database running on AWS. This database is essentially the “source of truth” for all Guardian content that has been published online – approximately 2.3m content items. We’ve just completed our migration away from Mongo to Postgres SQL.

Composer, and its database, originally started their lives in Guardian Cloud – a data centre in the basement of our office near Kings Cross, with a failover elsewhere in London. Our failover procedures were put to the test rather harshly one hot day in July 2015

Hot weather: good for fountain dancing, bad for data centres. Photograph: Sarah Lee/Guardian

After this, the Guardian’s migration to AWS became that bit more urgent. We decided to purchase OpsManager – Mongo’s database management software – along with a Mongo support contract – to help with the cloud migration. We used OpsManager to manage backups, handle orchestration and provide monitoring for our database cluster.
guardian  news  mongodb  database  sql  migration  blog 
october 2019 by ndf
Can Johnson pass his Brexit deal through the House of Commons? | Politics | The Guardian

# Can Johnson pass his Brexit deal through the House of Commons? #

Without DUP support, PM needs ERG, ex-Tories and pro-deal Labour MPs to get it over the line

Brexit latest – live
Rowena Mason Deputy political editor

Thu 17 Oct 2019 14.22 BSTLast modified on Thu 17 Oct 2019 15.33 BST

Boris Johnson has about 259 votes in the bag and he needs another 60-odd to pass his Brexit deal through parliament’s lower chamber. Photograph: Jessica Taylor/UK parliament handout

Juncker: UK will leave EU on 31 October if MPs back Brexit deal
Read more
Boris Johnson faces an uphill battle to pass his Brexit deal through the House of Commons without the support of the DUP. It would be just about doable if he retained all MPs who voted for the deal last time, all of the 28 Eurosceptic “Spartans” who rejected Theresa May’s agreement, and won over a handful of Labour MPs.

However, there are jitters about the deal among Eurosceptics, expelled former Tories and pro-deal Labour factions, making the result extremely uncertain. The prime minister has about 259 votes in the bag, and needs another 60-odd to get over the line (depending on abstentions). There is a possible pool of approximately 71 votes:

European Research Group (28)
guardian  brexit  news  politics  uk 
october 2019 by ndf
You can’t be ‘impartial’ about racism – an open letter to the BBC on the Naga Munchetty ruling | Afua Hirsch, Lenny Henry, Adrian Lester, Krishnan Guru-Murthy and 45 others | Opinion | The Guardian
The BBC has upheld a complaint against its Breakfast presenter. As black British broadcasters and journalists, we demand it reconsiders
Afua Hirsch, Lenny Henry, Adrian Lester, Krishnan Guru-Murthy and 45 others

Fri 27 Sep 2019 10.30 BSTLast modified on Fri 27 Sep 2019 11.43 BST
BBC presenter Naga Munchetty.
BBC presenter Naga Munchetty. Photograph: BBC/Guy Levy
Dear BBC,

On 16 July 2019, President Trump tweeted that four congresswomen should “go back to the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came”. All four congresswomen are people of colour, all four are US citizens and only congresswoman Ilhan Omar was born overseas. These comments were widely acknowledged as racist in a broad spectrum of reputable international news outlets, including the Washington Post, New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, Sky News and the Guardian.



While we stand in support of Munchetty, the consequences of this decision are widespread with implications for the entire media landscape in the UK and those who work within it. The scope of its effect is already evidenced in the unprecedented number of BAME media figures who have openly and publicly voiced their condemnation on social media.

BBC staff complain over Munchetty reprimand for Trump remark
Read more
In addition, we note the number of BBC journalists who have contacted us privately to express their concern at the climate of fear at the organisation, their feeling of being censored, and their apprehension at the consequences of their speaking out in support of this statement.

We demand that:

1. The ECU revisits and takes seriously overturning its decision;

2. BBC management issue their support for journalists and acknowledge there can be no expectation of “impartiality” over expressions and experiences of racism;

3. The bodies that oversee complaints about broadcasting, including the ECU and Ofcom, address their own levels of diversity and increase transparency as to how they reach their decisions, and how that process takes place in a manner reflective of the diversity of the population

We believe that, in addition to being deeply flawed, illegal and contrary to the spirit and purpose of public broadcasting, the BBC’s current position will have a profound effect on future diversity within the BBC. To suggest that future BAME broadcasters will be hired at the corporation on the premise that they remain “impartial” about how they feel about their experiences of racism is ludicrous. To require journalists of all ethnicities and races to endorse racism as a legitimate “opinion” is an abrogation of responsibility of the most serious nature.

• This letter is signed by Afua Hirsch, Lenny Henry, Adrian Lester, Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Gina Yashere, Hugh Woozencroft, Gillian Joseph, Michelle Matherson, Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff, Elaine Dunkley, Amal Ahmed, Charlene White, Lina-Sirine Zitout, Marverine Cole, Tsedenia Skitch, Jayson Mansaray, Rabiya Limbada, Aaron Roach Bridgeman, Holly Henry-Long, Diana Evans, Anjana Ahuja, Katrina Marshall Beharry, Yemi Bamiro, Claire Clottey, Ayshah Tull, Shaista Aziz, Patrick Younge, Jamal Osman, Catherine Baksi, Liliane Landor, Bethel Tesfaye, Girish Juneja, Daniel Henry, Eno Adeogun, Dope Black Dads, Marvyn Harrison, Warren Nettleford, Nels Abbey, Henry Bonsu, Nisha Lahiri, Jordan Jarrett Bryan, Rowena Twesigye, Alex Murray, Asif Kapadia, Claudia-Liza Armah, Antoine Allen, Symeon Brown, Lynda Smith, Ayo Akinwolere

guardian  letter  bbc  news  uk  culture 
september 2019 by ndf
Ministers still do not know if NHS can cope with no deal, says watchdog | Politics | The Guardian
NAO says data does not show that health services will be ready if UK leaves EU next month

Rajeev Syal

Fri 27 Sep 2019 06.00 BSTLast modified on Fri 27 Sep 2019 07.15 BST

Meg Hillier, the chair of the public accounts committee, said the report was deeply concerning and could result in the ‘gravest of consequences’. Photograph: Louise Bartlett Truslove/The Guardian
Ministers will not know whether there are enough medicines, medical supplies or freight capacity to support the NHS if the UK leaves the EU without a deal next month, Whitehall’s spending watchdog has found.

With just five weeks to Britain’s scheduled withdrawal on 31 October, the National Audit Office (NAO) said there were still risks, with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) still to do a “significant amount” of work .

In a critical report, the government’s “reasonable worst case” assumption is that the flow of goods across the Channel could be reduced to 40-60% of current levels on day one. Auditors said the data available did not show that the department was ready, or would be ready, if the UK were to leave the EU on the planned date.

Meg Hillier, the chair of the public accounts committee, said the report was deeply concerning and could result in the “gravest of consequences”.

Boris Johnson refuses to apologise for language about Jo Cox
Read more
“The Department of Health and Social Care still doesn’t know whether all stockpiles are in place, it has no idea whether social care providers are ready and it is still not certain whether all the freight capacity government needs will be in place on time. If government gets this wrong, it could have the gravest of consequences,” the Labour MP said.

Auditors examined the supply and transport of 7,000 medicines that come to the UK either from or via the EU as well as at least 450,000 different medical devices available on the NHS, most of which come to the UK through ports on the Channel.

The report said additional freight capacity chartered by the government for shipping priority goods across the Channel may not be fully available until the end of November, a month after the UK is scheduled to leave.

Auditors expressed concern that the DHSC did not know how many of the UK’s 24,000 nursing homes and other social care providers, many of which are small businesses, had followed its advice on “robust” contingency planning for a no-deal Brexit.

guardian  brexit  eu  health  medicine  news 
september 2019 by ndf
RNLI donations surge after Tory criticism of its work overseas | Society | The Guardian
Rise follows lifeboat charity’s robust response to critics of its support for projects outside UK

Steven Morris

Mon 16 Sep 2019 14.57 BSTLast modified on Mon 16 Sep 2019 15.11 BST

An RNLI lifeboat in action in Hastings. Photograph: Nicholas Leach/RNLI/PA
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has enjoyed a surge in donations after the charity was criticised for its work helping to save people from drowning abroad.

Both the Times and MailOnline had highlighted that the RNLI was sending millions of pounds to projects overseas at a time when it was facing a funding crisis that forced it to cut posts in the UK. Coverage included comments from two Tory MPs attacking the policy and led some donors to say they would stop supporting the charity.
guardian  news  charity  UK  world 
september 2019 by ndf
Tory civil war intensifies as Philip Hammond warns Boris Johnson he cannot expel him over Brexit: ‘The fight of a lifetime’ | The Independent
Philip Hammond says Boris Johnson has no power to expel him from the Conservative Party over Brexit and has threatened “the fight of a lifetime” to save it from “entryists”.

The former chancellor condemned the “incomers and entryists” – led by Dominic Cummings, the prime minister’s key aide – who were turning the party into “a narrow faction”.

And he poured scorn on Mr Johnson’s claim to be able to strike a fresh Brexit deal, saying: “There is no progress. There are no substantive negotiations going on.”

Mr Hammond also predicted victory for the rebels seeking to pass legislation to block a no-deal departure, adding: “There will be enough people for us to get this over the line.”

Local Tories in his Runnymede and Weybridge constituency have already reselected Mr Hammond – even with Mr Johnson’s threat to strip the party whip from him and other rebels.

Watch more

Labour set to block snap election over fears of no-deal Brexit ‘trick’
Asked if No 10 had the power to reverse that ...

independent  news  brexit 
september 2019 by ndf
Watch: Flooding in Macclesfield - MacclesField Express
Dave Thompson captures dramatic footage of cars wading precariously through deep floodwater

ByRhiannon McDowall
08:51, 17 JUN 2016UPDATED08:54, 17 JUN 2016

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Houses, gardens and streets in Macclesfield were submerged in up to three feet of flood water yesterday evening following torrential rainfall.

Dave Thompson, from Macclesfield, captured impressive footage of cars and buses wading precariously through deep floodwater on Dorchester Way and Manchester Road in Tytherington.

Cheshire Fire and Rescue said they were called out to a number of incidents across Macclesfield, Bollington, Prestbury and Wilmslow after the heavy downpour and spent the evening pumping out water from cellars.

The Cotton Tree, The Conservative Club and a number of houses on Bollington Old Road in Bollington were flooded.

A property on Grandlands in Macclesfield flooded with 6 inches of water and crews had to attend a property on Suffolk Close which had been flooded with at least and inch of water.

A garden at Lincoln Close in Macclesfield was flooded with a foot of water and water also entered the property, and garages at Yew Tree Way in Prestbury and Cambridge Avenue in Wilmslow were also flooded.
macclesfield  uk  video  weather  news 
august 2019 by ndf
Manufacturing a car creates as much carbon as driving it | Environment | The Guardian
Climate change
Green living blog Environment

What's the carbon footprint of ... a new car?

Making a new car creates as much carbon pollution as driving it, so it's often better to keep your old banger on the road than to upgrade to a greener model.

• More carbon footprints: nuclear war, cycling a mile, more
• Understand more about carbon footprints
Mike Berners-Lee and Duncan Clark

Thu 23 Sep 2010 07.30 BST First published on Thu 23 Sep 2010 07.30 BST

The carbon footprint of a new car:
6 tonnes CO2e: Citroen C1, basic spec
17 tonnes CO2e: Ford Mondeo, medium spec
35 tonnes CO2e: Land Rover Discovery, top of the range

The carbon footprint of making a car is immensely complex. Ores have to be dug out of the ground and the metals extracted. These have to be turned into parts. Other components have to be brought together: rubber tyres, plastic dashboards, paint, and so on. All of this involves transporting things around the world. The whole lot then has to be assembled, and every stage in the process requires energy. The companies that make cars have offices and other infrastructure with their own carbon footprints, which we need to somehow allocate proportionately to the cars that are made.

In other words, even more than with most items, the manufacture of a car causes ripples that extend throughout the economy. ...

guardian  news  environment  car  analysis  2010 
august 2019 by ndf
When Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez met Greta Thunberg: 'Hope is contagious' | Environment | The Guardian
One is America’s youngest-ever congresswoman, the other a Swedish schoolgirl. Two of the most powerful voices on the climate speak for the first time

by Emma Brockes

Main image: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Greta Thunberg. Photograph: Stephen Voss, Anna Schori/The Guardian
Sat 29 Jun 2019 08.00 BST Last modified on Sat 29 Jun 2019 10.34 BST
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez enters a boardroom at her constituency office in Queens, New York, after a short delay which, a political aide hopes, hasn’t been caused by a constituent waylaying her in the corridor. (“They can get really excited to meet her.”) Greta Thunberg is in her home in Sweden, her father testing the technology for the video link while the teenager waits in the background. The activists have never met nor spoken but, as two of the most visible climate campaigners in the world, they are keenly aware of each other.

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Thunberg, now 16, catapulted to fame last year for skipping school every Friday to stand outside the Swedish parliament, protesting against political inaction over the climate crisis and sparking an international movement, the school strike for climate, in which millions of other children followed suit. Ocasio-Cortez, the Democratic Representative for New York’s 14th congressional district is, at 29, the youngest woman ever to serve in Congress, whose election over a well-funded incumbent in 2018 was a huge upset to politics-as-usual. She has been in office for less than a year, which seems extraordinary given the amount of coverage she has generated. In February, Ocasio-Cortez submitted the Green New Deal to the US House of Representatives, calling for, among other things, the achievement of “net-zero” greenhouse gases within a decade and “a full transition off fossil fuels”, as well as retrofitting all buildings in the US to meet new energy efficient standards.

The Green New Deal, while garnering support from Democratic presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris and Amy Klobuchar, was mocked by speaker Nancy Pelosi (“the green dream or whatever they call it”), and defeated in the Senate by Republicans. Like Thunberg, however, Ocasio-Cortez gives every appearance of being galvanised by opposition, and has the kind of energy that has won her 4.41 million Twitter followers and makes establishment politicians in her path very nervous.
climate  guardian  news  people  environment  policy 
june 2019 by ndf
Farewell realism's Rory Stewart – elbowed out by chancers and charlatans | John Crace | Politics | The Guardian
Conservative MPs show they are determined to make the priapic Mr Blobby their next leader

Wed 19 Jun 2019 20.39 BST Last modified on Wed 19 Jun 2019 21.13 BST

Rory Stewart was out. The Tories had looked the national interest in the eye and put the party first. Photograph: Matt Dunham/AP
Shortly after six o’clock on Wednesday, Charles Walker, the joint acting chair of the 1922 Committee, confirmed what most people had already suspected. Rory Stewart was out of the leadership contest, his support having haemorrhaged away. The Tories had looked the national interest in the eye and put the party first.

The one candidate who had injected some realism into the race had been sharp-elbowed in favour of a bunch of incompetent charlatans, chancers and jobsworths. Men selling impossible dreams to the intensely gullible. #RoryWalksOn had become #RoryWalksOff. Though his time might come again. Possibly even later this year.

As in the previous rounds, voting had begun at 3pm but this time there was a difference. No Stewart. Normally the Walking 007 is one of the first on the scene, patrolling the corridor, peering deep into the souls of wavering Tory MPs. Daring themselves to put their consciences before their careers. Almost always a pointless exercise, but it keeps him occupied. The place felt empty without him. The chronicle of a death foretold.
guardian  crace  news  brexit 
june 2019 by ndf
The preachers getting rich from poor Americans - BBC News
By Vicky Baker
BBC News in Texas and Alabama
29 May 2019
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Larry and Darcy Fardette donated to many televangelists
Televangelist Todd Coontz has a well-worn routine: he dresses in a suit, pulls out a Bible and urges viewers to pledge a very specific amount of money. "Don't delay, don't delay," he urges, calmly but emphatically.

It sounds simple, absurdly so, but Coontz knows his audience extremely well. He broadcasts on Christian cable channels, often late into the night, drawing in viewers who lack financial literacy and are desperate for change.

"I understand the laws that govern insurance, stocks and bonds and all that is involved with Wall Street," he once said, looking directly into the camera. "God has called me… as a financial deliverer."

Crucially, he always refers to the money as a "seed" - a $273 seed, a $333 seed, a "turnaround" seed, depending on the broadcast. If viewers "plant" one, the amount will come back to them, multiplied, he says. It is an investment in their faith and their future.

In 2011, one of those desperate viewers was Larry Fardette, then based in California. Larry watched a lot of similar televangelists, known as prosperity preachers, who explicitly link wealth and religion. But he found Coontz particularly compelling. He assured quick returns. He seemed like a results man.
bbc  news  USA 
may 2019 by ndf
Bamboo Bicycle Club: How DIY wooden frames became the biggest trend in cycling
Lifestyle Health and Fitness Body
Bamboo Bicycle Club: How DIY wooden frames became the biggest trend in cycling

The AERO Bamboo Bike

7 SEPTEMBER 2016 • 11:04AM
Nick Harris-Fry

Tucked away in a workshop just across the River Lea from the Olympic Park is perhaps the most unique bike workshop in London. For the past four years, people have been visiting the Bamboo Bicycle Club to make their own bespoke bike frame from the giant woody grass, and demand remains high, with the weekend workshops booked out months in advance.

Doing it yourself is a key part of the Bamboo Bicycle Club – there’s no option to purchase a ready-made bike. You can either sign up for the two-day workshop, or buy a home-build kit. At the end of the weekend workshop you will have constructed whatever kind of frame you want from scratch, with the level of customisation on offer a major part of the appeal. Then there’s the bamboo itself.

bamboo  bike  bicycle  news  telegraph 
may 2019 by ndf
Moodle Welcomes Dandian Software as a New Certified Moodle Partner in China - Moodle
Published by Moodle at 19/02/2016

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Moodle strengthens its global network of certified service providers with the addition of Dandian Software, the first China-based company to become a Moodle Partner.
PERTH, Western Australia — Moodle, the world’s open source learning platform, today announces Dandian Software as its first Moodle Partner in China. As a member of the Moodle Partner network, Dandian Software will provide certified Moodle services and support, use the Moodle trademarks and contribute royalties to the ongoing development of Moodle.

Located in Zhengzhou in central China, Dandian Software provide e-learning, management and mobile software solutions and support to universities, academies, schools and training institutions in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

On joining the Moodle Partner network, Jiyun Wang, Principal of Dandian Software commented “We are very excited to be able to cooperate with Moodle HQ as China’s first Moodle Partner. As a Moodle Partner we are better positioned to offer support and services to Moodle users in the region, and we expect the status will help us to increase our customer database.”

“We’re very excited to begin this new partnership with Jiyun and the team at Dandian Software” said Martin Dougiamas, Founder and CEO of Moodle. “We’re looking forward to working closely with them to best meet the local educational needs of Moodle users in China.”

The Moodle Partner network continues to expand, now with 73 certified partnerships based in more than 46 countries worldwide.

moodle  news  china 
may 2019 by ndf
Watch tonight on BBC4: Happy Birthday OU - and all the fun of the day
Credits: Lenny Henry, ... ..., Shailey Minocha ...


Watch tonight on BBC4: Happy Birthday OU - and all the fun of the day
25 April 2019
story image

Happy Birthday OU: 50 Years of the Open University will be broadcast on BBC4 at 9pm tonight. The programme is an hour-long documentary capturing the journey of our institution over the last 50 years.

If you were unable to watch the event live, it's available on the Charter Day intranet page via the left-hand link ‘On the Day livestream' and available via YouTube from Friday 26 April. Try using a different browser if the recording is not showing.

The House of Commons congratulated the OU on our 50th birthday with an Early Day Motion tabled with support from MPs representing all UK nations, including the chair of the Education Select Committee and shadow HE Minister.

The anniversary brochure pdf is now available on the Charter Day intranet page.

OU  intranet  news  ou50 
april 2019 by ndf
Woman behind Brexit petition to revoke article 50 receives death threats | Politics | The Guardian
Online petition attracts more than 4m signatures as Margaret Georgiadou is forced to close Facebook account

Follow live updates on the People’s Vote march
Sarah Marsh

Sat 23 Mar 2019 17.16 GMT First published on Sat 23 Mar 2019 10.23 GMT

The petition is the most popular to be submitted to the government’s petitions website Photograph:
The woman behind the petition to revoke article 50 has said she is scared and has been forced to close her Facebook account after receiving multiple death threats for launching the challenge to Brexit.

Margaret Georgiadou, who described herself as a frustrated remainer, set up the online petition in late February, calling for the UK government to revoke article 50 and remain in the EU. By Saturday afternoon it had attracted more than 4,400,000 signatures – making it the most popular to be submitted to the Parliament website.

Brexit march: '1 million' rally for people's vote - live updates
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The petition gathered momentum shortly after the prime minister appealed to the British people to back her in her standoff with MPs from all parties. The number of signatures continued to rise on Saturday, with hundreds of thousands of people marching in central London for a “people’s vote” on Brexit, and many protesters calling for the UK to remain in the EU.

Georgiadou, who is currently in Cyprus, told the BBC: “I feel terrible, I feel angry with myself because I thought I was tougher than that. But I was scared. I haven’t even told my husband because he is very old and he would become hysterical.”

Earlier, Georgiadou tweeted: “Hi – am the person responsible for the revoke article 50 petition. Just needed to tell you that 1. I am currently visiting Cyprus. and 2. last night I had three telephoned death threats. Who wants Brexit so much that they are prepared to kill for it?”
guardian  petition  news 
march 2019 by ndf
Brexit march – live: '1 million' Put It To The People protesters finish historic rally for a second referendum to revoke Article 50 | The Independent
Adam Forrest London @adamtomforrest ,
Zamira Rahim @ZamiraRahim
1 hour ago

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Indy Politics

Some one million people were estimated to have joined the Put It To The People march in central London today, organisers said.

Organised by the People’s Vote, Britain for Europe and Open Britain, protesters demanded the public be given a final say on the Brexit process.

Campaigners seeking a second referendum started in Park Lane at midday before gathering at Parliament Square for a series of speeches, with demonstrators tailing back through the route shown on aerial footage.


inRead invented by Teads

On stage Labour’s deputy leader Tom Watson addressed Theresa May's own speech this week when she told voters fed up of Brexit that "I am on your side".

He said: “Have a look out of the window prime minister. Open your curtains. Switch on your TV. Here are the people. Theresa May - you don’t speak for us.”

Best pictures from the Put It To The People protest
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And Michael Heseltine told marchers that the EU represented "parliamentary democracies working together with power based on a shared sovereignty far in excess of anything any one of us could achieve individually" over decades.

People came from across the country to join the demonstration. Sorcha Kirker, 27, travelled from Orkney and told The Independent: "This is too important to miss because of something like geography. It’s our future."
twitter  independent  news  london  anti-  brexit  article50  uk  democracy 
march 2019 by ndf
'Fromage not Farage': the best signs and sights on the People's Vote march | Politics | The Guardian
'Fromage not Farage': the best signs and sights on the People's Vote march
A sculpture of Theresa May spears a representation of the British economy. Photograph: Isabel Infantes/AFP/Getty
Visual highlights from the Put it to the People anti-Brexit demonstration in London

Sat 23 Mar 2019 14.40 GMT Last modified on Sat 23 Mar 2019 19.36 GMT
The first line of defence against Brexit: meow memes
Photograph: Ed Vulliamy/The Observer

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The four horsemen of the cockupalypse
Photograph: Ed Vulliamy/The Observer
guardian  photos  london  news 
march 2019 by ndf
Brexit march: '1 million' rally for people's vote - live updates | Politics | The Guardian
Follow the latest updates as people descend on London to march for a second vote on the UK’s departure from the EU

‘Fromage not Farage’: the best banners
Petition to revoke article 50 passes 4m
LIVE Updated 54m ago
Play Video 2:33
People's vote Brexit rally draws 1 million marchers – video report
Sarah Marsh and Ruth Quinn

Sat 23 Mar 2019 19.02 GMT First published on Sat 23 Mar 2019 10.30 GMT
4h ago Tom Watson tells Theresa May: 'Let the people take back control'
5h ago 'Chaotic and confused': Khan accuses May of failing on Brexit
5h ago A count of marchers has topped 1 million
9h ago March to start in Park Lane at 12pm
9h ago Thousands gather for march - share your day
2h ago
Summary: Over a million people march for a people's vote
Official figures put the numbers at the central London march today at over one million.
Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon told the rally in Parliament Square that “the prime minister and her government have proved completely incapable of delivering on the result of the 2016 vote, which is why it is right that this should now go back to the people.”
Margaret Georgiadou, the “frustrated remainer” behind the petition to revoke article 50 has received a string of death threats over her challenge to the Brexit process.
Deputy Leader of the Labour party Tom Watson told the crowds in Parliament Square: “Theresa May: you don’t speak for us.”
guardian  uk  news  democracy  london 
march 2019 by ndf
How the media let malicious idiots take over | George Monbiot | Opinion | The Guardian
George Monbiot
Be it Jacob Rees-Mogg or Nigel Farage, blusterers and braggarts are rewarded with platforms that distort our political debate
Fri 22 Mar 2019 15.57 GMT Last modified on Fri 22 Mar 2019 17.25 GMT

Jacob Rees-Mogg during his LBC radio phone-in programme, April 2018. Photograph: Ian West/PA
If our politics is becoming less rational, crueller and more divisive, this rule of public life is partly to blame: the more disgracefully you behave, the bigger the platform the media will give you. If you are caught lying, cheating, boasting or behaving like an idiot, you’ll be flooded with invitations to appear on current affairs programmes. If you play straight, don’t expect the phone to ring.

BBC Scotland drops shows featuring maker of dog Nazi salute video
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In an age of 24-hour news, declining ratings and intense competition, the commodity in greatest demand is noise. Never mind the content, never mind the facts: all that now counts is impact. A loudmouthed buffoon, already the object of public outrage, is a far more bankable asset than someone who knows what they’re talking about. So the biggest platforms are populated by blusterers and braggarts. The media is the mirror in which we see ourselves. With every glance, our self-image subtly changes.
guardian  news 
march 2019 by ndf
Petition to revoke article 50 hits 3.5m signatures | Politics | The Guardian
Theresa May rejected the petition on Thursday, since when it has added 1.5m names

Alex Hern

Fri 22 Mar 2019 17.46 GMT First published on Fri 22 Mar 2019 12.38 GMT

Petition to revoke article 50. Photograph: Parliament
An online petition calling on the UK government to revoke article 50 and remain in the EU has hit 3.5m signatures, adding 2.5m signees in less than 24 hours.

The petition, started in late February by “frustrated remainer” Margaret Georgiadou, began to rapidly gain signatures on Wednesday evening, following the prime minister’s appeal to the British people to back her in her standoff with MPs from all parties.

But Theresa May rejected the message of the petition, when a No 10 spokeswoman said on Thursday evening that she worried that cancelling Brexit would cause “potentially irreparable damage to public trust”.

“The prime minister has long been clear that failing to deliver on the referendum result would be a failure of our democracy and something she couldn’t countenance,” the spokeswoman added.

May tells Johnson: I will not step aside to solve Brexit crisis
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Over the course of Thursday, the parliamentary petitions website collapsed multiple times under the weight of traffic to the plea. The error message “Bad gateway”, which displayed when the website was struggling most, even trended on Twitter at times throughout the day.
guardian  brexit  petition  news 
march 2019 by ndf
'Friendship over fear': Manchester man shows solidarity with local mosque | UK news | The Guardian
Siva Thangarajah

Sat 16 Mar 2019 16.24 GMT Last modified on Sat 16 Mar 2019 21.19 GMT

Andrew Graystone outside his local mosque in Levenshulme. Photograph: @AndrewGraystone/Twitter
A Mancunian whose message of solidarity with a local mosque after the Christchurch massacre went viral has said the overwhelming response shows “the power of choosing friendship over fear”.

Andrew Graystone from Levenshulme stood outside the Madina mosque on Friday after hearing about the shooting at two mosques in New Zealand that left 49 people dead.

He held a cardboard sign with a handwritten message: “You are my friends. I will keep watch while you pray.”

Graystone said he was motivated to support the Muslim community after the terrorist attack on Friday morning. “I thought, what would it feel like as a Muslim going to prayers today? I would feel a mixture of enmity and even fear.”

At a time when countries around the world are on high alert in case of further Islamophobic attacks, Graystone decided he wanted to ensure that people attending the local mosque felt safe. “I picked up a card, wrote my message, went down to my local mosque at Barlow Road and stood outside.”

He greeted arriving worshippers with “salaam” or peace. Many people, he said, were suspicious at first. “They thought I was a protester, but when they saw what was written on the board, people warmed to me.”
guardian  uk  news 
march 2019 by ndf
Why are our MPs putting blatant self-interest ahead of the Brexit vote? | Matthew d’Ancona | Opinion | The Guardian
Ghostworld 21m ago

6 | 7
Sums up Brexit perfectly.

Brexit (n) - "The undefined being negotiated by the unprepared in order to get the unspecified for the uninformed."


IfItsMagic Ghostworld 17m ago

I like this one. But there is an element of nastiness that's missing. Key.


tomguard 21m ago

Who is this Will O’Thepeople chap I keep hearing about? Any relation to Iris Backstop? Just asking.....


pincuspallus tomguard 17m ago

He is the landlord of the Irish boarder.


Felixthered tomguard 13m ago

That other guy Arti Cal Fiftay.

guardian  brexit  comment  news 
march 2019 by ndf
Missing Leah Croucher: Police visit 4,000 Milton Keynes homes - BBC News
Beds, Herts & Bucks
Missing Leah Croucher: Police visit 4,000 Milton Keynes homes
8 hours ago
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Leah Croucher's lack of contact with friends or family was "unbelievable", her mother said
A teenager is still missing ten days into a search which has seen police visit more than 4,000 homes.

Leah Croucher, 19, was last seen by her parents on 14 February at their home in Emerson Valley, Milton Keynes.

CCTV showed her walking down Buzzacott Lane in Furzton, in the direction of her work, at 08:15 GMT on 15 February.

Thames Valley Police has more than 50 officers and staff involved in the search, which has covered multiple areas of Milton Keynes.

The force has asked anyone who was on or near Buzzacott Lane the day Leah went missing to get in touch, particularly if they spoke to her then, or in the past.
bbc  news  mk  miltonkeynes 
february 2019 by ndf
Hurray! It’s our official birthday
Hurray! It’s our official birthday
31 January 2019

Hurray! 23rd April is our official birthday, the day we were granted our Royal Charter.

We are busy planning for Charter Day, celebrated on Campus in Milton Keynes and we hope as many colleagues as possible can join in the festivities on this very special day for the OU. Please do save the date for Charter Day - Tuesday 23 April, which is our first day back after the Easter Bank Holiday, and [register your interest][r] in attending.

More details will follow on other events in the Nations and regions so watch this space.


ou  intranet  news 
february 2019 by ndf
'Collective insanity': readers on the amendment vote | Politics | The Guardian
You have been reacting to MPs passing an amendment to replace the Irish backstop and discussing what might be next for Brexit

Follow all the day’s political developments - live updates
Guardian readers

Wed 30 Jan 2019 10.39 GMT Last modified on Wed 30 Jan 2019 10.41 GMT

Theresa May speaking in the House of Commons on Tuesday. Photograph: Xinhua/Barcroft Images
‘I feel totally scunnered, a citizen of nowhere’
Well, thanks, politicians. This morning I feel totally scunnered, a citizen of nowhere. We are all being played, no deal is the endgame where the wealthy will make financial killings. That’ll be the warm up act to destabilisation of the EU and God knows what after. The arms dealers must be rubbing their hands with glee. And we all are collateral damage, at best. I loathe politicians. tlswimmer
guardian  uk  politics  news  brexit 
january 2019 by ndf
Zimbabwean police files implicate army in widespread abuses | World news | The Guardian
Exclusive: documents seen by Guardian suggest soldiers have been responsible for murder and rape during crackdown

Jason Burke Africa correspondent

Wed 30 Jan 2019 12.25 GMT Last modified on Wed 30 Jan 2019 14.34 GMT

Armed soldiers patrol the Zimbabwean capital, Harare, on 21 January. Photograph: STF/EPA
Internal Zimbabwean police documents passed to the Guardian suggest the army has been responsible for murder, rape and armed robbery during the ongoing brutal crackdown in the southern African country.

In more than a dozen investigation reports shared with the Guardian by police officials frustrated at the apparent impunity of the military, a series of alleged attacks are described, including two murders and the rape of a 15-year-old girl.

Police investigators wrote that all the acts were committed by men wearing army “uniforms” or “camouflage” – a style of wording allowing the police to avoid making direct accusations against the powerful military.

Officially, the Zimbabwe Republic police, the national police force, has blamed the violence on criminal “rogue elements” who have stolen army uniforms, and said the charges of widespread abuses by security and the armed forces have been fabricated. But in most cases described in the documents seen by the Guardian, the assailants carried automatic weapons, which few people other than soldiers and police possess.
guardian  news  africa 
january 2019 by ndf
The only Brexit compromise I can see coming is a bad one | Martin Kettle | Opinion | The Guardian
Martin Kettle
The road to the Good Friday agreement took many years of slowly shifting opinion. Brexit feels a long way off that point
Wed 23 Jan 2019 18.32 GMT Last modified on Wed 23 Jan 2019 18.55 GMT

Pro-Brexit and anti-Brexit protesters clash outside the Houses of Parliament. Photograph: Jack Taylor/Getty Images
Brexit is a reminder that two connected things need to happen in order for a political compromise to stick. First, partisan leaders must decide that it is better than any other achievable outcome. Second, the public must also converge to give it their backing. One movement towards the treaty table without the other doesn’t cut it.

The Northern Ireland peace process was a classic example of this dual process. It took many years before mutually antagonistic political leaders decided that a peace deal was better than an unwinnable war. But it took even longer for the two communities in Northern Ireland to begin to make the same move. The peace process only worked because the political deal was followed by referendums that endorsed it.
guardian  news  uk  brexit 
january 2019 by ndf
Don’t trust Daily Mail website, Microsoft browser warns users | Media | The Guardian
Mail Online rated one out of five for credibility by new feature to fight fake news

Jim Waterson Media editor

Wed 23 Jan 2019 06.00 GMT Last modified on Wed 23 Jan 2019 12.04 GMT

The NewsGuard verdict on Mail Online. The Microsoft Edge feature rates news websites on a range of journalistic standards. Photograph: mailonline
Microsoft’s internet browser is warning users not to trust the Daily Mail’s journalism as part of its new feature designed to fight fake news.

Visitors to Mail Online who use the Microsoft Edge browser can now see a statement asserting that “this website generally fails to maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability” and “has been forced to pay damages in numerous high-profile cases”.

The message, which is produced by a third-party startup called NewsGuard, tells readers to proceed carefully given that “the site regularly publishes content that has damaged reputations, caused widespread alarm, or constituted harassment or invasion of privacy”.

It gives Mail Online, one of the world’s biggest news websites, one out of five on credibility – the same level as the Kremlin-backed RT news service.

Facebook Twitter Pinterest NewsGuard’s verdict on the Mail Online. Photograph: Daily mail
NewsGuard is run by news industry veterans and says it is trying to establish industry-standard benchmarks for which news websites should be trusted.
guardian  news  uk  browser  microsoft 
january 2019 by ndf
Dying man given bill for tens of thousands of pounds for NHS treatment | Society | The Guardian
Dying man given bill for tens of thousands of pounds for NHS treatment
Doctors say making migrant patients pay for NHS palliative care contravenes the Hippocratic oath

Sarah Johnson

Tue 22 Jan 2019 13.00 GMT Last modified on Tue 22 Jan 2019 14.01 GMT

Dr Natalie Miller and Dr Dana Beale, who work with homeless patients in London at Great Chapel Street Medical Centre. Photograph: Alicia Canter for the Guardian
Nasar Ullah Khan is lying in a hospital bed in Birmingham. He is 38 and has weeks, if not days, left to live. Khan, a Pakistani national who came to the UK nine years ago and overstayed his visa, was refused a lifesaving heart transplant just before Christmas because of his ineligibility for free healthcare. Now he’s been told that he will be charged before he can receive end-of-life care. He was handed his first invoice for £16,000 on New Year’s Eve, days after he was told he would probably die within a month. The payment for hospital treatment already received is due at the end of January.

“It’s completely gut-wrenching,” says Elizabeth Bates, a Birmingham GP who is working with Doctors of the World. “Knowing that he’s been handed bills in his hospital room after he’s been given a dreadful diagnosis … I cannot understand what the philosophy of the people running the hospital is and how they expect that to impact on the clinical staff and on the patient sitting in front of them.” Bates, who has been helping Khan, says refusing to help care for him while he is dying is especially unfeeling. “Everybody is appalled that he might be charged for palliative care. It goes against every professional ethic and our Hippocratic oath. We should be treating people according to need.”

Medical colleges criticise charging migrants upfront for NHS care
Read more
Before 2017, migrants and visitors to the UK not eligible for free healthcare were entitled to receive it and be billed afterwards.
guardian  news  uk  health  society 
january 2019 by ndf
Shocked diplomats suggest EU would extend Brexit deadline | Politics | The Guardian
European envoys in London say depth of UK turmoil has taken them by surprise

Patrick Wintour Diplomatic editor

Fri 18 Jan 2019 11.22 GMT Last modified on Fri 18 Jan 2019 11.43 GMT

‘I was in Brussels last week and no one can understand what has happened to Britain,’ said one diplomat. Photograph: Jack Taylor/Getty Images
Phone lines and encrypted emails from EU embassies in London to their capitals have been red hot this week as diplomats seek to make sense of the chaos in the British parliament over Brexit.

Some diplomats admit their primary response has been sheer shock at the depth of the turmoil.

But they seem keener on helping Britain delay article 50, which has set the 29 March deadline, than is sometimes thought.

Ditch Brexit, German leaders urge UK in paean to ale and milky tea
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“I was in Brussels last week and no one can understand what has happened to Britain,” said one. “It’s a country looked up to and respected for its ability to find a compromise, to be the one in the meeting with a calm analysis and a gift for finding solutions to problems. It is the country to which people turn for answers.

“But this no longer seems to be about details, the length of the backstop drafts or texts, but about ideology. It is very deep, passionate and irrational.”


One ambassador admitted succumbing to despair after watching hours of the parliamentary debate, saying: “There is a lot of Churchillian rhetoric, but no Churchill.”

In such uncertain times, the unenviable task of embassies is to give an informed assessment of what such an unpredictable parliament might do next.
guardian  uk  news 
january 2019 by ndf
Home Office refuses to let great-grandparents remain in UK | UK news | The Guardian
Iranian couple rely on family for support and help care for their autistic grandson

Amelia Hill

Fri 18 Jan 2019 07.04 GMT Last modified on Fri 18 Jan 2019 08.26 GMT

Mozaffar Saberi and Rezvan Habibimarand (7th and 8th from right) and Navid Saberi (second left) posing for a group wedding photo. Photograph: Family Handout
The Home Office is trying to separate a couple from their four British children, 11 grandchildren and a great-grandchild by forcing them to return to Iran.

The 83-year-old great-grandfather and 73-year-old great-grandmother, who bought their flat in Edinburgh in 1978, live near their close-knit family and depend heavily on their daily support. But they also act as co-parents to one of their grandchildren, a teenager with severe autism who requires constant supervision. Their help enables the boy’s mother – a single parent – to continue her work as an NHS nurse.

Separation of the teenager from his grandparents, Mozaffar Saberi and Rezvan Habibimarand, would be extremely detrimental to him and also to his mother, the couple’s daughter, according to a chartered psychologist with expertise in children with autism, who has written a report provided to the Home Office.
guardian  uk  news 
january 2019 by ndf
David Cameron and the art of blaming other people | David Mitchell | Opinion | The Guardian
David Mitchell
No one can accuse the former Tory prime minister of being power hungry. What he’ll be remembered for is passing the buck

Sun 13 Jan 2019 09.59 GMT Last modified on Sun 13 Jan 2019 11.26 GMT

Illustration by David Foldvari.
David Cameron really loved organising votes for things, didn’t he? That was his answer to everything. I was reminded of this when I read that the elected police and crime commissioners, which his government introduced to oversee the constabularies of England and Wales, aren’t doing a very good job. According to the head of the National Crime Agency, they’re all about stopping speeding and burglary, and not so hot on organised crime, online child abuse and modern slavery.

It’s not surprising. Making some local elected officials the overseers of the police is effectively putting the Neighbourhood Watch in charge of law enforcement strategy.
guardian  news  politics  uk 
january 2019 by ndf
Brexit: May's government defeats no-confidence motion by 325 to 306 votes – Politics live | Politics | The Guardian
Politics live with Andrew Sparrow
Brexit: May's government defeats no-confidence motion by 325 to 306 votes – Politics live

* Government survives Labour’s no-confidence vote amid uncertainty over next Brexit steps

* Full story: Theresa May’s government survives vote
* Obsession, vanity or grit? what makes May tick?
* How did your MP vote?
* Extracts from Tom Watson’s damning speech on May
* Evening summary


15m ago
Evening summary
Andrew Sparrow Andrew Sparrow

Theresa May has comfortably won the no confidence vote, by 325 to 306 - a majority of 19. The vote came after a debate which saw Jeremy Corbyn accuse her of leading “a zombie government”. And Tom Watson, the deputy Labour leader, closed the debate with a powerful speech saying May does not “possess the necessary political skills, empathy, ability, and most crucially the policy, to lead this country any longer”. (See 7.23pm.)

Opposition party leaders have refused an invitation from May to join her for talks about an alternative approach to Brexit until she abandons some of her red lines. After the vote May said she would like talks to start tonight. But Corbyn and the Lib Dems said they would not engage with her until she ruled out a no-deal Brexit. And the SNP said she would have to be willing to discuss extending article 50 and holding a second referendum before they agreed to participate.

Downing Street has flatly ruled out customs union membership, before the cross-party Brexit talks Theresa May promised on Tuesday night have even begun. May also delivered the same message in her speech in the debate. (See 4.14pm.)
Michel Barnier has said Brexit is at a standstill after the crushing rejection of Theresa May’s deal by MPs but offered to return to the negotiating table if parliament forces Theresa May to shift her “red lines”.

Business leaders have suggested the UK resembles a “supertanker heading for the rocks” that will not be saved unless factions in the Conservative party drop their own “red lines” for a Brexit deal.

Investors expect a delay to Britain’s exit from the EU following the crushing defeat of the prime minister’s Brexit deal, the Bank of England governor has said.

Half a dozen Labour MPs came out in support of a second referendum for the first time at a Westminster photocall, arguing it was the “the only logical option” if the party could not secure a general election.

Jacob Rees-Mogg hosted a champagne party for Brexiter colleagues on Tuesday night following the Commons vote that inflicted the worst defeat in modern history upon a UK prime minister, it has emerged.

That is all from me for tonight. My colleague Mattha Busby is taking over now.

guardian  news  live  brexit 
january 2019 by ndf
'Pathetic' radio ads stoke public fear of no-deal Brexit, says MP | Politics | The Guardian
Government information looks like it was ‘made by children at lunch break’

Matthew Weaver and Lisa O'Carroll

Tue 8 Jan 2019 15.47 GMT Last modified on Tue 8 Jan 2019 21.05 GMT

The Labour MP Jo Stevens says radio ads are latest attempt to play on anxieties of a no-deal Brexit. Photograph: Smiejkowska/Rex/Shutterstock
Government radio adverts aimed at helping the public prepare for Brexit have been condemned as “pathetic” by pro-EU campaigners.

The adverts went on air on commercial radio from Tuesday as the government discounted the possibility it might delay the UK’s exit from the EU beyond 29 March.

Theresa May is taking us to the no-deal cliff but won’t march us over
Polly Toynbee

Read more
The adverts do not specifically mention the prospect of the UK crashing out of the bloc without a deal, but campaigners say fears about such a scenario are implied.

In one advert, actors with different regional accents ask: “Will my travel be affected when we leave the EU? What about documents for driving? Will mobile roaming change? Do I need to renew my passport earlier than planned?”

In another, an actor with Dutch accent asks: “I’m an EU citizen living in the UK. How will this affect me?” Another with a Welsh accent asks: “How will exporting my goods be affected?”
guardian  uk  news  brexit 
january 2019 by ndf
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Congresswoman attacked for dancing - BBC News
BBC Trending
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Congresswoman attacked for dancing
By Chris Bell
BBC News
3 minutes ago
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The video of Ms Ocasio-Cortez dancing has more than eight million views on Twitter
In the eyes of some social media critics the United States' youngest-ever congresswoman can do no right.

To a lengthy list of past misdemeanours, including her clothes and not being rich, can now be added the grievous crime of dancing while in college.

A day before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was officially sworn-in, near decade-old footage of the congresswoman dancing as a student at Boston University re-emerged on Twitter, apparently in an effort to embarrass her.

It has since been viewed more than 8 million times.
bbc  trending  news  USA 
january 2019 by ndf
The vandals destroying libraries should have the book thrown at them | Catherine Bennett | Opinion | The Guardian
Catherine Bennett
A great public service is being run down by a state that prefers cost-cutting to culture
Sun 13 Jan 2019 10.00 GMT

Children at the information desk in a Stockport library.
Libraries aren’t just collections of ‘reading material’. Above, the information desk in a Stockport library. Photograph: travelib / Alamy/Alamy

It is a further triumph for The Favourite, with 12 Bafta nominations, to have propelled Ophelia Field’s 2002 biography of Sarah Churchill, the favourite in question, to the heights of Amazon’s gay and lesbian biography list.

Anne Somerset’s 2012 biography of Queen Anne is also likely to benefit, as people attempt to discover more about the extraordinary incidents depicted in Yorgos Lanthimos’s film. How did 18th-century politicians train their racing ducks? Did Queen Anne ever get treatment for her raging bulimia? What became of Anne’s 17 little rabbits? And did Sarah really dress up as a highwayman – because it’s certainly not in Wikipedia?

sanspeur q321gg8cla 3h ago

No probs, I'm actually posting this in my local library. I have been pleasantly surprised by the reference books available on 16th century history, which I'm re-reading at the moment.Libraries Forever! Mine has had an upsurge in borrowers after moving to the leisure centre, so there ARE plenty of readers out there.

Lee_Smith 4h ago

I question whether people supporting libraries are actually users themselves. As a father I’ve started visited five different libraries recently with my children. I rarely if ever see adults or young people browsing the available books. Users are almost exclusively students who want a quiet place to work, people who wish to browse the internet, homeless people who want warmth in the winter or middle class parents who wish to occupy their children for an hour or two.

They certainly don’t resemble the nostalgic memories of people such as the writer of this piece.

TheghostofAndrewC 4h ago

I confess to a certain degree of hypocrisy here. I was an avid user of the public library (one of those famously endowed by that infamous old rascal Andrew Carnegie) when I was a child/of school age and then, when I became an adult, went to university and so forth, I drifted. Since my late teens and becoming an undergraduate I have essentially always had access to a university library (though during a brief spell as a supply teacher while living in Edinburgh - working off and on

guardian  news  library  comment 
january 2019 by ndf
How the ‘boring whinger’ Andy Murray won over Middle England | Andy Bull | Sport | The Guardian
The Scot was initially unloved by the British tennis public but he changed perceptions simply by being himself

Andy Bull

Sat 12 Jan 2019 09.00 GMT Last modified on Sat 12 Jan 2019 18.43 GMT
Play Video 2:14
'Sad day for the sport': tennis world pays tribute to Andy Murray – video
There is a story Andy Murray tells from Wimbledon in 2006. He was 19, a gangly kid on his first full season on tour and had just taken over from Tim Henman as Britain’s top-ranked tennis player. He was walking through the crowd, coming back from the practice courts, when he passed a woman talking on her mobile phone. “Oh,” she said when she saw him go by, “that Scottish wanker’s just walked past.” Murray swears like a sailor himself but the insult stung so much he can still feel it. “I was like ‘what?’” he said in an interview a decade later. “This is my home tournament. Why is this happening?”

Now that everybody is talking about how much they love Murray, it is easy to forget how little a lot of them used to like him.
guardian  sport  news 
january 2019 by ndf
Trump losing battle to avoid blame for shutdown as it enters day 23 | US news | The Guardian
Poll shows 53% of Americans blame Trump and Republicans
Trump, however, reportedly believes shutdown is a win for him
Martin Pengelly in New York and agencies

Sun 13 Jan 2019 14.56 GMT First published on Sun 13 Jan 2019 13.27 GMT

Donald Trump speaks from the Oval Office about border security on 8 January. Photograph: Carlos Barría/AP
Donald Trump is losing the battle to avoid blame for the government shutdown, according to a new poll. The president has reportedly told advisers he thinks the 23-day partial closure of the federal government, the longest ever, is a win for him.

'It's ruining people's lives': federal workers count cost of shutdown
Read more
A Washington Post-ABC News poll released on Sunday followed trends in previous polling when it showed 53% of respondents saying Trump and Republicans in Congress were to blame for the shutdown, with 29% blaming Democrats and 13% a combination.

Support for building a border wall, the issue at the heart of the shutdown, increased to 42%, from 34% in January 2018. Among Republicans, 87% supported a wall.
guardian  news 
january 2019 by ndf
Didn’t Fiona Bruce do well! Amazing what a professional can pull off | Barbara Ellen | Opinion | The Guardian
Barbara Ellen
Question Time’s new host took the job in her stride. And did anyone notice she was a woman?

Sun 13 Jan 2019 05.59 GMT Last modified on Sun 13 Jan 2019 08.33 GMT
Play Video 1:09
Fiona Bruce makes debut as Question Time host – video
Phew. Let’s be thankful that Fiona Bruce didn’t mess up during her first outing as host on Question Time.

By Bruce messing up, I mean, by crying, becoming hysterical, fiddling with her bra strap, that kind of thing. After all, she is a mere woman and I was concerned that she would do something stupid or feminine. (Same thing?) Instead, armed with only decades of professional experience, Bruce skilfully did the job that she was asked to do, asking questions, being firm with panellists, steering the debate, without once talking about her feelings. It’s just amazing what women can do these days – serious television gigs aren’t so easy when you haven’t got the right male body parts to command instant respect...

That’s quite enough snark.
guardian  news 
january 2019 by ndf
Even Mordor was less toxic than Brexit Britain, this nation beyond parody | Marina Hyde | Opinion | The Guardian
Marina Hyde
John Bercow’s maniacal defence of a car sticker beats the competition to enter the Brexit madness time-capsule
Fri 11 Jan 2019 16.45 GMT Last modified on Fri 11 Jan 2019 17.05 GMT

‘Bercow’s exchange with Adam Holloway MP is now our Statue of Liberty, buried in the sand for Charlton Heston to one day find.’ Photograph: Dan Kitwood/PA
Well, there you are, then. Another epic political week has passed in off-brand Westeros, a septic isle from which there is no real escape, only a bloodstained booth where Chris Grayling is offering to sell you a ferry ticket.

Every few days I change my mind about what I’d pop in the time capsule to explain to future generations just how inspirational this era was. This week, though, the choice could only be Wednesday’s parliamentary exchange between House of Commons Speaker John Bercow and Tory MP Adam Holloway, which I have lightly edited for space reasons.

John Bercow: Speaker unafraid to hold the government's feet to the fire
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Holloway: “We’ve ALL noticed in recent months a sticker in your car making derogatory comments about Brexit. NO, THIS IS A SERIOUS POINT. HAVE YOU DRIVEN THAT CAR WITH THE STICKER THERE?”

Bercow: “THAT sticker, on the subject of Brexit, HAPPENS to be affixed TO – or in the windscreen OF – MY WIFE’S CAR! YES!”
guardian  news  brexit 
january 2019 by ndf
Andy Murray: Women praise tennis star for role in fighting sexism - BBC News
Andy Murray: Women praise tennis star for role in fighting sexism
3 hours ago
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Coach Amelie Mauresmo, and Judy Murray have been big influences on Andy Murray
Following Andy Murray's announcement that he will retire this year, many prominent women - inside and outside of tennis - have praised him for taking a leading role in fighting sexism.

From calling out journalists, to becoming one of the first leading men's tennis players to employ a female coach, he has hit the headlines on numerous occasions.

US tennis legend Billie Jean King tweeted: "Your voice for equality will inspire future generations."
bbc  news  sport  culture 
january 2019 by ndf
John Bercow's decision endangers the office of Speaker, and our democracy | Anne Perkins | Opinion | The Guardian
Anne Perkins
Whatever shape Brexit takes, the effects of this unilateral change to parliamentary rules will be felt for a long time

Wed 9 Jan 2019 14.36 GMT Last modified on Wed 9 Jan 2019 14.47 GMT

‘The real point about Bercow’s actions is the furious accusations of party bias that it has provoked from his critics.’ Photograph: House of Commons/PA
The row over the Speaker’s decision may look like a particularly indulgent form of deckchair rearrangement. But in parliamentary terms it is historic. And whatever form Brexit finally takes, it will be part of the shape of the Britain that emerges.

On Wednesday morning John Bercow was widely reported to have ignored the considered advice of the official guardians of the rules of procedure, and allowed a cross-party amendment tabled by Dominic Grieve to be voted on.

The amendment, which was passed, forces the prime minister to come back within three sitting days if her withdrawal agreement is voted down, rather than the three weeks imposed by an earlier Grieve amendment. Its backers say it just puts the timetable back where it would have been if the prime minister hadn’t ducked the vote before Christmas. It would open up the possibility of a proper debate about what to do next. But should the Speaker have let the vote happen at all?
guardian  brexit  news  politics 
january 2019 by ndf
Cross-party alliance of MPs tells May: we will stop no-deal Brexit | Politics | The Guardian
Government suffers defeat during debate on the finance bill in the Commons

Heather Stewart, Jessica Elgot and Daniel Boffey

Tue 8 Jan 2019 20.59 GMT Last modified on Tue 8 Jan 2019 21.05 GMT

May has conceded to senior ministers she is on course to lose next week’s historic Brexit vote on leaving the EU. Photograph: Matt Dunham/AP
Theresa May faces a concerted campaign of parliamentary warfare from a powerful cross-party alliance of MPs determined to use every lever at their disposal to prevent Britain leaving the EU without a deal in March.

Former staunch loyalist Sir Oliver Letwin signalled that he and other senior Conservatives would defy party whips, repeatedly if necessary, to avoid a no-deal Brexit, as the government suffered a humiliating defeat during a debate on the finance bill in the Commons.

Letwin and 16 other former government ministers were among 20 Conservatives who banded together with home affairs select committee chair, Yvette Cooper, and the Labour leadership to pass an anti no-deal amendment to the finance bill.

They defeated the government by 303 votes to 296 – a majority of seven.
guardian  brexit  news 
january 2019 by ndf
Eat your Christmas tree (and five other top tips) - BBC News
5 hours ago
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Christmas is officially over - but your tree can live on

There are pine needles all over the floor, the decorations are falling off and the base is starting to rot away.

Sadly it's time to throw out your once beautiful and carefully put together Christmas tree before it falls over and injures someone.

But what else could you do with it instead of adding to your local council's landfill?

Here are six top tips just for you.

1. Eat it
Yes really.

Fancy some pine needle cured salmon, pine nut tea or even ice cream?

Julia Georgallis, who set up a supper club called How To Eat Your Christmas Tree and also has a micro bakery, has come up with a menu based on all things spruce and pine.

She says there are many ways to make your tree appetising.

"Spruce tastes a little bit like vanilla, so it actually makes delicious ice cream.

"You simply make a custard, infuse the custard with spruce needles and then churn or freeze it, it's really simple to do at home."
bbc  news  environment 
january 2019 by ndf
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