Watch Lady Day’s Audra McDonald Talk Passing Out On Stage

first_imgAudra McDonald stopped by The Late Show on June 11 to chat with host David Letterman about everything from her Tony-winning turn as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill to passing out on stage. Wait, what? Turns out the six-time Tony winner didn’t always tread the boards so sure-footedly, although she’s “fortunately gotten over that now.” We’ll say! Find out all this and, touchingly, why McDonald is “so very grateful to my grandmother” for helping her performance as Holiday below, then check out the newly extended play at Circle in the Square. Star Files Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill Audra McDonald Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on Oct. 5, 2014 View Commentslast_img read more

Vermont Secretary of State launches ‘Transparency Tour’ starts October 11

first_imgVermont Secretary of State Jim Condos announces he will conduct a 12 stop tour to discuss Vermont’s public records and open meeting laws with municipal and state employees and citizens who serve on local government boards. The public is invited and encouraged to attend these events. After a presentation there will be time for Q&A and a general discussion with the audience. This is a great opportunity to address specific issues that you may have questions about, and to discuss the nuances of these laws. Secretary Condos stated, ‘Open and transparent government is good government! Vermont’s citizens deserve accountability in their government.’ ‘This tour allows me to assist Vermont’s public officials who must abide by these laws every day. We recognize that these laws are not always clear and we need to hear from them regarding the challenges they face and the questions they have. I look forward to engaging in an open discussion about the importance of access to public records and public meetings.’ All events will be held from 6-8 pm. Dates and locations are as follows:Montpelier                         Pavilion Building                             Tuesday               October 11th          Colchester                          St. Mike’s College                           Thursday             October 13thNewport                              Goodrich Library                              Thursday             October 20thSt. Albans Town                Town Hall                                           Tuesday               October 25thSpringfield                         Springfield High School                Wednesday        October 26thBrattleboro                        Town Hall                                            Thursday             October 27thSt. Johnsbury                     St. J Middle School                          Tuesday               November 1stMorrisville                          Municipal Offices                            Thursday             November 3rdMiddlebury                        Ilsley Public Library                        Monday               November 7thBennington                        Fire Facility                                        Wednesday        November 9thRutland                                City Hall                                               Thursday             November 17thWhite River Junction     Bugbee Senior Center                   Tuesday               November 22nd We are pleased to welcome the participation of the following organizations: VT League of Cities and Towns, VT Municipal Clerks and Treasurers Association, VT School Boards Association, VT Press Association, VT American Civil Liberties Union and VT Common Cause. To find out more information and to RSVP, please contact Nancy Lynch @ 802-828-2148 or via email at nancy.lynch@sec.state.vt.us(link sends e-mail).last_img read more

Drought-Stricken Guatemala Pleads For Aid

first_imgBy Dialogo September 14, 2009 Guatemala called on the international community to stump up 110 million dollars to help battle a famine and drought that has struck the Central American nation. A government statement said the money was needed to buy food for the estimated 410,000 families who have been affected. Guatemala’s President Alvaro Colom has declared the situation — which has claimed 460 lives since the start of the year — a “public calamity.” Most of the deaths occurred in the impoverished northern section of Guatemala bordering Mexico, where more than half of the region’s 13 million inhabitants subsist below the poverty line. Key crops like corn and beans have been decimated by the drought, leading to a spike in malnutrition rates. The drought is also being felt in neighboring Mexico, where the country’s water commission last month warned of a “critical” water shortage that was likely to reach crisis levels by next year. Mexico’s Cutzamala reservoir, which supplies the capital’s urban sprawl, is at record low levels, as are other public and private sources of water. The drought, the worst in 70 years, is said to be caused in part by the “El Nino” seasonal warming phenomenon.last_img read more

Public Education Advocates Rally For Change

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Public education advocates Diane Ravitch and Brian Jones at the much-anticipated “Changing the Conversation” public education event at Brooklyn’s New School on Oct. 11. (Jaime Franchi/Long Island Press)Booming voices carried over the raucous crowd that packed a Brooklyn public school’s auditorium earlier this month for a wide-ranging discussion about the country’s public education system. At times, the passionate audience got so caught up in the spirit of the message that they felt compelled to yell right back. The much-anticipated Oct. 11 event at Brooklyn’s New School, dubbed “Changing the Conversation,” was the brainchild of the Network for Public Education, which was holding its first-ever Public Education Nation broadcast. While the crowd of about 200 were on hand to hear from several esteemed speakers, the event also offered people who had only conferred online the opportunity to meet in person for the first time. The most high-profile guest sat up front, a profile familiar to those who watch The Daily Show or keep up with the latest news in public education. In essence, every single person in the room.Attendees packed the venue despite heavy rainfall for the opportunity to hear speakers take on subjects like “Authentic Reform,” testing and the Common Core, and charter schools in the wider context of what seems to be a complete public education overhaul that began when George W. Bush first signed No Child Left Behind into law and continued into President Obama’s Race to the Top initiative, which doles out funding for the Common Core education reform.The speakers included such notable advocates for public education like Diane Ravitch, the prolific author of the national bestseller Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools, education professor and noted BAT (Badass Teacher’s Association member) Yohuru Williams, author of On the Same Track: How Schools Can Join the Twenty-First-Century Struggle against Resegregation and 2013’s New York Principal of the Year, South Side High School principal Carol Burris, Green Party candidate for lieutenant governor Brian Jones, and community activist Jitu Brown, among others. The speakers held the audience of approximately 200, plus others watching via livestream on schoolhouselive.org, in rapt attention for more than five hours, as they built sharp critiques of the current state of public education toward a powerful finale that featured Ravitch and Brown in a deep conversation about students’ civil rights. The panelists presented a united front in depicting the roots of the problems in education: wealthy benefactors, with little to no education experience, leading “reform” without the input of seasoned professionals. Teachers, principals, professors count themselves as troops on the ground, with significant insight into the issues within public education. They have no shortage of ideas as to how to fix them. However, it seems no one is asking them, these professionals say. Hence, Public Education Nation, which billed itself as “the voices of educators, parents and students, rather than billionaires, or those who echo their talking points,” according to education activist, NPE co-founder, and host Anthony Cody.Coming out of the gate with a pointed criticism as an example of such a corporate takeover of public education, Yohuru Williams contended that you “cannot grow followers from Astroturf. In other words, fake grass roots.”The speakers all echoed the theory put forth by Ravitch that public education is being undermined as part of a plan to eventually become privatized by corporate investors. The standardized tests, on which the Common Core depend to function, is a measure by which to find such deep fault within public education that, one by one, they will be forced to close. In their place, charters, funded by wealthy benefactors with their own regimes, and private schools will reign. This model appears to be playing out in such urban areas as Chicago and Philadelphia.Brian Jones warned of such an eventuality for children.“What’s at stake here is whether or not we’re going to have a robust, well-funded, high-quality system where people can just cross the threshold and receive the service for free and have the schools deploy whatever resources are necessary to meet the needs of that student as opposed to a selective, competitive system which will inevitably reproduce dramatic inequality we’re already seeing in our system,” Jones told the Press.Both charters and private schools have no obligation to accept (or keep) students. Therefore, children with behavioral or learning disabilities could fall between the cracks, exacerbating an already wide achievement gap, experts said. The root of the problem, according to Jones, is poverty, which he believes can be addressed, instead of being passed onto schools to accommodate.“Everybody who works in a school knows the difference between a child who’s homeless or bounced around, a child with no food in the refrigerator,” he said. “Then something happens, the parent gets a really good job and the child’s life stabilizes and transforms, and the child transforms. What they’re able to do transforms. I feel like as somebody who’s running for office who’s not in the classroom right now, I want to say there’s things we can do about poverty that should be part of the discussion about authentic reform in our schools.”Jones suggests a minimum wage of at least $15 per hour, free tuition for all CUNY and SUNY schools, and a system where medical bills cannot bankrupt a family as the basis for what he considers “authentic reform” for schools, in the place of conforming curriculum and standardized testing to replicate equality. “These aren’t crazy things to demand. This things exist on Planet Earth,” he added. He concluded that by sending some of the money used to develop standardized tests on resources for the schools, children would be immediately and positively affected.“If we took the tens of millions of dollars that they’re taking to develop tests, it’s like as we speak right now, they’re developing a standardized music test. We haven’t even figured out how to put a music teacher in front of every child and yet we’ll spend all of this money for a music test?” he asked, to murmurs in the audience. “It’s upside down. We need to be able to direct the resources toward the things that we know the parents, students teachers, actually want in the schools: small class sizes, experienced teachers, and rich curricular experiences.”The much anticipated finale featured Ravitch. The crowd greeted her with hearty applause and loud whoops of appreciation, especially when she read the oft-quoted Gandhi in saying, “First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win,” in reference to the education reformers who she contended “have so much money and so much power and they do control the US Department of Education, they do have all these foundations with billions of dollars and they have targeted particularly minority communities for devastation and in some cases, a land grab for gentrification.” She concluded that while the fight is long from reaching its eventual conclusion, there was good reason to feel optimistic, “because they keep talking about changing the narrative. Why? Because their narrative has failed.”She noted that their fight for public education will be won, quite simply, because “we’re right and they’re wrong.” She argued that standardized tests measured little more than the wealth of one’s parents, than any “aptitude.” “What I’m pulling for for all children of this country are the same learning conditions that are available and that the reformers choose for their children,” Ravitch told the crowd. “What I’d love to see are opt outs everywhere. Universal opt out! What if they threw a test and nobody took it?” she asked to a cheering crowd. “When these children take these Common Core tests, their teachers are not allowed to see what their students got right and what they got wrong. They learn nothing from them. Which means the tests have no diagnostic value, which means they have no purpose whatsoever, which means we are paying millions of dollars to an industry which is doling out a worthless product and labeling our children as failures and setting our schools up for privatization.”She contended that the reformers have targeted the urban communities of Los Angeles, St. Louis, Kansas City, Washington D.C., New Orleans, and Houston, among others, which are populated with people of color who do not have the “political power to fight back.”Jitu Brown, an imposing figure with a booming orator’s voice, stole the entire show, if that is possible. He posed that the education reform that has deemed inner city schools as “failures” based on standardized test scores and systematically closed them as a profound civil rights violation that has literal life or death consequences.He relayed the instance where school closing led to a child who had to cross a four lane highway in order to get to his new bus stop who’d been hit by a car and died, of school riots breaking out between incoming students deemed “project kids” by their new classmates, and of a kid killed in gang violence for standing on the wrong corner, in the wrong neighborhood, five miles from where his now-closed school had been.“We’re not gonna win if we approach this as an intellectual fight,” he said. “This is a spiritual fight. Our work is to kill privatization. Not to negotiate with it. Not to play with it. Because when a child tugs on your pant leg because their school closed and the city dumped 250 of them in another school, and there’s 54 kindergarteners in a classroom and the cafeteria is so crowded that the children have to eat lunch in the gym, that’s not intellectual, that’s a child in a crucial part in their life.”“We can’t be activists anymore,” he concluded. “We have to be organizers.”Jitu’s vision is to mobilize an army of conscious constituents to action, to “draw a line in the sand and say, ‘Not one more child. Not one more school.’ ”A standing ovation erupted long after the hard-fought words of those self-proclaimed advocates for public education left the stage. The hashtag #PublicEdNation trended on Twitter, and in clusters, online, and in person, activists organized and geared up for another round of battle. With Green Party pins attached to their vests, they look to Nov. 4 to vote their conscious.last_img read more

Smithtown Man Who Stole Retirement Savings Sentenced

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A 52-year-old Smithtown man who deceived investors and stole from people’s retirement savings was sentenced Friday at U.S. District Court in Central Islip to 30 months in prison for a $3 million wire fraud scheme he operated, federal prosecutors said. Alexander Swanson was also forced to forfeit more than $3 million in ill-gotten gains, prosecutors said, and was ordered to pay $2.8 million in restitution to his victims. Swanson convinced people to invest by misrepresenting his job, background and investment experience, prosecutors said. He also issued false reports boasting about this investments. Loretta Lynch, the US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said Swanson gambled that a false persona “would be enough in order to bilk unsuspecting individuals out of their hard earned retirement savings.” “While the fake Swanson promised them secure investments and gambled their money away, the real Swanson today received the only payout his actions deserve: a significant jail sentence,” Lynch added. Prosecutors said the scheme impacted investors in New York and New Jersey.last_img read more

Put yourself in members’ shoes

first_img continue reading » Two events made Jason Lindstrom the credit union stalwart he is today.First, he worked as a part-time teller in college.“Coming into that environment, I noticed right away how much help we gave members, and that we were on a first-name basis with them,” he says. “That job was far better than flipping burgers.”Second, Lindstrom happily pursued a degree in business marketing until he ran into a major barrier: calculus. He wasn’t good at it, and he knew he would never master it.“So I shifted to political science, a major that was helpful when later on I had to deal diplomatically with politicians on both sides of the aisle at the state level as a credit union representative,” says Lindstrom, CEO of $270 million asset Evergreen Credit Union in Portland, Maine.Lindstrom’s stints with credit unions in California and Virginia involved financial analysis, outside sales, and business development that gave him career-forming insights. 26SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Q + A

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Agriculture Ministry recommends importing more garlic as demand surges

first_imgWith garlic prices already soaring since the start of 2020, the ministry is now seeking not only to stabilize prices but also to mitigate the impacts of disruption to the logistics sector caused by the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic.The average price of garlic rose roughly 30 percent to Rp 44,900 per kilogram from January to March, according to data from the Information Center for Strategic Food Prices (PIHPS), the government’s food price tracker.This is well above President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s preferred price range of between Rp 20,000 and Rp 30,000 per kilogram.Domestic garlic production is also expected to increase in the coming months as Temanggung in Central Java, the country’s center of garlic production, is now in the middle of harvest season. As of last month, the Agriculture Ministry has issued recommendations to import more than 460,000 tons of garlic to ensure sufficient supplies and stabilize soaring prices during Ramadan and Idul Fitri when food demand usually surges.Between March and May, the government actually needs to procure only around 196,000 tons from overseas to meet demand at home, said Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo. Coupled with domestic production, the ministry estimates there will be a surplus of more than 116,000 tons at the end of May.Speaking during an online hearing with House of Representatives Commission IV overseeing food and agriculture on April 16, Sharul said the garlic imports were necessary to stabilize prices during Ramadan, which will begin April 23. “With the current stock, we expect it will be under control and safe, god willing, at least until Idul Fitri,” he said. Last year, the regency’s harvest yielded more than 24,000 tons, or 27 percent of national production.With a garlic shortage at home and demand surging ahead of Ramadan, the Trade Ministry issued last month a regulation to allow companies to import garlic from overseas without having to obtain a permit.As of April 16, 34 containers carrying 29 tons of garlic each had arrived at Tanjung Priok port in North Jakarta from China, the world’s largest garlic producer, said Trade Minister Agus Suparmanto.“Based on Trade Ministerial Regulation No. 27/2020, local companies can import without a permit until June 30,” Trade Ministry Domestic Trade Director General Suhanto told The Jakarta Post via text message on Thursday.With the rupiah depreciating against the United States dollar and the COVID-19 pandemic disrupting logistics, importing garlic from China is not only more expensive but also more difficult, according to the Indonesian Onions and Root Vegetables Entrepreneurs (Pusbarindo) trade association.China, where the SARS-CoV-2 virus first emerged in late December, has ended its massive lockdown measures. However, business activities have not fully recovered.“Even in normal times […]  it was difficult for companies to fulfill 100 percent [of the permitted import volumes] in one or two months,” Pusbarindo chairman Valention told the Post in a phone interview on Thursday. “Moreover, financial capacity varies from one firm to another.”According to data from the Agriculture Ministry, garlic imports declined by around 20 percent to more than 465,000 tons between 2018 and 2019.Topics :last_img read more

A Madam Wob Dwiyet Show to be held as part of the 2011 independence celebrations

first_img Tweet LocalNews A Madam Wob Dwiyet Show to be held as part of the 2011 independence celebrations by: – September 2, 2011 Share Sharing is caring! 247 Views   no discussionscenter_img Share Share Chief Cultural Officer, Mr. Raymond Lawrence.The Cultural Division will this year reintroduce the Madam Wob Dwiyet Show, as part of activities marking the 2011 Independence Celebrations.The Show carded for October 21st, will feature at least seven contestants above the age of 60, who will make presentations in talent and Wob Dwiyet.This year Dominica will celebrate its 33rd Anniversary of Independence from September 18th to November 4th, under the theme; ‘joining hands in unity’.At the media launch of the event on Friday, Chief Cultural Officer, Mr Raymond Lawrence said that they are hoping to promote both the contemporary and traditional culture of Dominica during the celebrations.Mr Lawrence is calling on Dominicans to make a commitment this year to speak creole, promote our culture, eat creole dishes and practice patriotism during the celebrations.“As we celebrate thirty three let us make a special effort and together let us ask God for the grace to rise above our differences and collaborate with others to build and not destroy this beloved nation of ours. We all have a country to build so as our theme says, let’s join hands in unity to build Dominica; the nature island of the world.”The Honorable Minister responsible for Culture, Mrs Justina Charles says that the theme chosen this year calls on citizens to put all ‘petty’ differences aside and ‘join hands in unity to develop our country.’“It is a patriotic call, a call for us to set aside our differences of political colour, of religion, of class or status, of race and to work together for the good of our citizens and of our nation. In order to move the development plan of this nation forward all hands must be on deck, and this must not be just spoken words, but must be reflected in our daily engagements.”Minister for Social Services, Community Development and Gender Affairs, Honorable Gloria Shillingford believes that an individual responsibility is need for all to make the celebrations successful.“It is with pride and dignity that I call upon Dominicans locally and abroad to rally together for the celebration of this great event which will be celebrated over the period 18th September to November 4th, 2011. This indeed should be a great season for all Dominicans.”The activities will begin with a Church Service on September 18th followed by the Official Opening on September 24th. Other events will include cultural competitions, history week, Miss Wob Dwiyet Show, Market days, Heritage day, Creole in the Park and the well-renowned World Creole Music Festival.Dominica Vibes Newslast_img read more

Castle Bruce Secondary School receives cheque from AID Bank

first_img Share Share Share : L-R Daphne Vidal (Marketing Executive, DDA), Ginette Languedoc (Teacher, Castle Bruce Secondary School), Nyana George (Student, Castle Bruce Secondary School) and Josephine Dechausay Titre (Special Projects / Communication Coordinator, AID Bank). Roseau, Dominica – (May 21, 2012) – The Castle Bruce Secondary School is the recipient of a $500 cheque from the Dominica Agricultural and Industrial Development Bank, one of the co-sponsors of this year’s Tourism Youth Congress (TYC). The cheque was awarded to the school for having successfully competed in the TYC held on May 3, 2012 as part of activities to mark Tourism Awareness Month. Nyana George, a fourth form student and the representative of the Castle Bruce Secondary School, in her first presentation, convinced the judges that vagrancy is a threat to the future of the tourism industry and recommended concrete ways in which the problem can be addressed. Nyanna GeorgeIn the second round, Miss George impressed the judges with her description of her community, Castle Bruce, as the next tourist paradise. She competed against students from the Convent High School, the North East Comprehensive School, the Pierre Charles Secondary School, the Dominica Community High School, the Dominica Grammar School, the Orion Academy, the Portsmouth Secondary School, the Saint Mary’s Academy and the Wesley High School.Nyana George will represent Dominica at the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s Tourism Youth Congress in St. Kitts and Nevis in October 2012. Press Release Tweetcenter_img EducationLocalNewsSecondary Castle Bruce Secondary School receives cheque from AID Bank by: – May 22, 2012 183 Views   no discussions Sharing is caring!last_img read more