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John Constable painting location mystery solved after 195 years

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The mystery of the location of a viewpoint used by English painter John Constable has been solved, after nearly 200 years. The Stour Valley and Dedham Church was painted in Suffolk, England, between 1814 and 1815, but changes to the landscape meant that the spot he chose was not known, despite the best efforts of historians and art experts.

Now the puzzle has been answered. Martin Atkinson, who works for the National Trust as property manager for East Suffolk, used clues from the painting and looked at old maps to track down the viewpoint. Trees had grown, a hedgerow had been planted and boundaries had moved or disappeared, but Atkinson eventually worked out where Constable had stood. He said, “When I discovered that I had worked out the location where Constable painted this particular masterpiece, I couldn’t believe it. All the pieces of the jigsaw finally fitted together.”

Atkinson used an 1817 map of East Bergholt, where Constable grew up, as a reference point, but found that the view would have changed not long after the painting was completed. “The foreground didn’t fit at all, it was quite unusual as we know Constable painted it in the open air so he would have been standing in the scene. The hedgerow in his work no longer exists and there’s another hedgerow that runs across the scene today which wasn’t there. When you stand on the road on which he would have stood, and use the oak tree as a reference point, you see the same view. It’s great to see where an old master stood – and be inspired by the same view,” he said.

Suffolk, where Constable painted many of his finest paintings, is often called “Constable country”. Most, but not all, of the locations that Constable depicted are known. The picture is now housed in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.

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Author Amy Scobee recounts abuse as Scientology executive

Monday, October 11, 2010

Wikinews interviewed author Amy Scobee about her book Scientology – Abuse at the Top, and asked her about her experiences working as an executive within the organization. Scobee joined the organization at age 14, and worked at Scientology’s international management headquarters for several years before leaving in 2005. She served as a Scientology executive in multiple high-ranking positions, working out of the international headquarters of Scientology known as “Gold Base”, located in Gilman Hot Springs near Hemet, California.

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UK government loses personal information of 25 million people

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling announced to a shocked House of Commons today that two password-protected — but not encrypted — computer disks containing the entire Child Benefit database have been lost in transit between the offices of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in Washington, Tyne & Wear and the National Audit Office (NAO) in London, in what has been described as “one of the world’s biggest ID protection failures”.

The database contains details of all families in the UK who receive Child Benefit — all families with children up to 16 years of age, plus those with children up to 20 years old if they are in full-time education or training — estimated to contain 25 million individuals in 7.25 million families. Among other items of information, the database contains names, addresses, dates of birth, child benefit and National Insurance numbers, and where appropriate, bank or building society account details.

The discs were created by a junior official at the HMRC in response to a request for information by the NAO, and were sent unregistered and unrecorded on 18 October using the courier company TNT — which operates the HMRC’s internal mail system. When it was found that the discs had not arrived for audit at the NAO, a further copy of this data was made and sent — this time by registered mail — and this package did arrive. HMRC were not informed that the original discs had been lost until 8 November, and Darling himself was informed on 10 November.

The violation of data protection laws involved in the creation of the discs has led to strong attacks on the government’s competence to establish the proposed National Identity Register, when all UK residents will have an identity card. Conservative Shadow Chancellor George Osborne described the loss of data as “catastrophic” and said “They [the government] simply cannot be trusted with people’s personal information”.

The Chairman of HMRC, Paul Gray, has resigned over the affair, and critics are calling for Darling to do likewise.

This is the third data embarrassment for HMRC in recent weeks — earlier this month it was reported that the details of over 15,000 Standard Life customers had been put on disk, and then lost en route from HMRC in Newcastle to Standard Life in Edinburgh — and last month a laptop containing the data of 400 people with high-value ISAs was stolen from the boot of a car belonging to a HMRC official who had been carrying out a routine audit.

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NSW govt to rebuild high school with private funding

Monday, May 22, 2006

New South Wales minister for Education and Training, Carmel Tebbutt told parliament that Kelso High School, which was destroyed by fire on August 18, 2005 will be rebuilt under the NSW government’s New Schools Public Private Partnerships (PPP) program. Under the program, the bulk of construction costs come from private companies who own the schools for 30 years, after which time they revert to government ownership.

The PPP program began in October 2001. According to the government, 19 schools will be delivered under the PPP program by 2009.

The announcement follows Member for Bathurst, Gerard Martin’s statement to parliament on September 14, 2005 that the government would be rebuilding the school at a cost of $18 to $25 million. “The Government has accepted the responsibility of the $18 million to $25 million to rebuild the school, which is proceeding post haste” he said.

The PPP announcement has been seen as a backflip by the government.

When approached by Wikinews, Brad Hazzard, the opposition’s education spokesperson said that the coalition did not have a formal policy in this area but generally were supportive of the PPP program so long as infrastructure and maintenance are addressed.

Australian Greens education spokesperson, John Kaye, said that problems were already emerging with the PPP program in NSW. In March 2006, it was revealed that the government had to negotiate an exit strategy so that after school hours child care could be provided. In a media release provided to Wikinews, Dr Kaye said, “Yet another flaw in a NSW Public Private Partnership (PPP) has been uncovered. Just like the Cross City Tunnel, the community suffered because the contract failed to protect the quality of service delivery,”

“After numerous complaints from parents, the Iemma government had to negotiate an exit strategy from the contract to provide out-of-school-hours childcare. Corporate giant ABC Learning which had purchased the original provider, Peppercorn, was clearly not interested in the expensive end of childcare”.

Dr Kaye also pointed out that an Auditor general’s report found alarming evidence that the basis for PPP in NSW could be based on unreliable financial models. Dr Kaye said that the Auditor General has “cast a very large shadow” over the government’s claimed savings from the PPP program.

“It appears that the NSW government does not know with any degree of certainty how much it would cost to perform the same function in the public sector. Any attempt to say that private sector control is cheaper is now fraught with danger,”

“The Auditor General’s report proves that the methodology used by the Government to estimate the costs of public sector provision is highly unreliable and suspect” said Dr Kaye.

Both Carmel Tebbutt and Gerard Martin gave no response when contacted by Wikinews.

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Two-and-a-half tonnes of marijuana destroyed in Afghan school

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The combined efforts of agents from the Afghan Commandos and Coalition forces have led to the discovery and destruction of two-and-a-half tonnes of marijuana in an abandoned school in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar on Friday.

Kandah?r province or Qandahar (??????,{??????) is one of the largest of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan. It is located in southern Afghanistan, between Helamand, Oruzgan and Zabul provinces. Its capital is the city of Kandah?r, also spelled Qandah?r, (?????? or ??????), the second largest city in Afghanistan, with a population of 450,300 (2006 estimate). Kandahar City is located on the Arghandab River. The province has a population of nearly 890,000, with more than 300,000 living in its capital city. The main inhabitants of Kandahar province are the Pashtun people.

An improvised explosive device and an unexploded mortar round, both 100-meters away from the school, also were destroyed.Foot patrol by the combined forces yielded tips which led to the drug discovery. A Commando also discovered a large room filled with marijuana seeds. The marijuana was placed in two-foot-tall (0.6-meter) stacks that filled multiple 12ft-by-12ft rooms. Rust on the furniture suggests the Afghan schoolhouse may not have been used as such for a long period of time. No students or faculty were around at the time of the drug bust.

U.S. Forces Afghanistan spokesperson, Col. Jerry O’Hara said that “using drugs to fund insurgent activity is bad enough; using a school as a drug warehouse is an attack on the future of all Afghanistan.”

Xinhua has reported that “according to a recent U.N. report, Afghanistan produces over 90 percent of the world’s opium as Taliban militants will benefit nearly 500 million U.S. dollars from opium trade in 2008.”

Meanwhile, coalition troops have killed four militants in Zabul Province. They also detained five suspects on Saturday. Adm. Mike Mullen, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that “the United States would send between 20,000 and 30,000 more forces to Afghanistan by summer.” “Those forces will primarily move into the country’s south, where the insurgency is the most entrenched,” he added.

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Feminization, Do You Have Any Excess Masculinity?

By Mark Goodworthy

When you talk about sexuality and gender, society plays a big influence. During the old days, it was accepted that there is only two genders: man and woman. But the modern times is recognizing a third gender: the gays or the homosexuals.

Although the concept is still not accepted in conservative societies, it should still be acknowledged as a fact of life. Today, there are many transgender, transsexuals and transvestites that are wishing that they could become a woman completely, not only in body but also in mind and in heart.

When a man consciously decides to become a female, the process is called feminization. Although very controversial, this process is important to complete the transformation. Physically, a man can easily transform into a female. He could wear cosmetics, grow his hair and have surgery. Surgeries could include breast implants and removal of his male genitalia.

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The man could also increase the level of the female hormones in his body to naturally change his physique. There are estrogen-laden pills that could be purchased and taken to change the skin’s texture, reduce facial growth and soften curves.

Even with such changes, the conscious mind is still thinking like a man and the person would still feel that his transformation is incomplete. Through the process of feminization hypnosis, you will be able to acquire the emotional as well as psychological aspect of woman. A qualified hypnosis would make simple suggestions while you are under the influence of hypnosis. Since the subconscious is more receptive to messages and suggestions, you will feel, act and think 100 percent woman in no time at all.

Feminization by hypnosis does not require any pills or diets. It will simply open the part of your consciousness that has been resisting the complete transformation to a woman. You will no longer feel trapped or ashamed because your mind and your personality will no longer experience conflicts.

Hypnotherapy is also known to be effective in treating addiction and phobias. It is not surprising that it could also be effective in feminization. If you are interested in this technique, simply browse the internet for additional information on hypnotherapy.

There are many reputable providers who can give you expert advice and assistance. But do not forget to be cautious when getting hypnotherapy services. Better still, you should ask your friends, colleagues and families for referrals. They might know a reputable hypnotherapy services provider.

About the Author: Find out more about

Feminization hypnosis

by visiting the site.

Feminization hypnosis

accelerates femininity, mentally bonding the sensations of feeling you have transformed.

Source:

isnare.com

Permanent Link:

isnare.com/?aid=158226&ca=Self+Help

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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Communist Party candidate Johan Boyden, Toronto Centre

Friday, October 5, 2007

Johan Boyden is running for the Communist Party in the Ontario provincial election, in the Toronto Centre riding. Wikinews interviewed him regarding his values, his experience, and his campaign.

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Canada’s Parkdale—High Park (Ward 13) city council candidates speak

This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Monday, October 30, 2006

On November 13, Torontoians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward’s councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto’s ridings is Parkdale—High Park (Ward 13). Two candidates responded to Wikinews’ requests for an interview. This ward’s candidates include Linda Coltman, David Garrick, Greg Hamara, Aleksander Oniszczak, Bill Saundercook (incumbent), and Frances Wdowczyk.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

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Wikinews interviews World Wide Web co-inventor Robert Cailliau

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The name Robert Cailliau may not ring a bell to the general public, but his invention is the reason why you are reading this: Dr. Cailliau together with his colleague Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, making the internet accessible so it could grow from an academic tool to a mass communication medium. Last January Dr. Cailliau retired from CERN, the European particle physics lab where the WWW emerged.

Wikinews offered the engineer a virtual beer from his native country Belgium, and conducted an e-mail interview with him (which started about three weeks ago) about the history and the future of the web and his life and work.

Wikinews: At the start of this interview, we would like to offer you a fresh pint on a terrace, but since this is an e-mail interview, we will limit ourselves to a virtual beer, which you can enjoy here.

Robert Cailliau: Yes, I myself once (at the 2nd international WWW Conference, Chicago) said that there is no such thing as a virtual beer: people will still want to sit together. Anyway, here we go.

Contents

  • 1 History of the WWW
  • 2 Future of the WWW
  • 3 Final question
  • 4 External links
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News briefs:June 4, 2010

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