MOVIE GUY — Boys State provides fascinating look at America’s political future

first_img But the real power of this film is how it delves into the minds of these young men. These are teenagers who have a budding interest in going into politics when they grow up. Their optimistic views of political service to the country service are inspiring. Then again, some of their jaded thoughts on American politics are also quite distressing.It’s curious that the film draws such divisive reactions. There are some audiences who see the clear-eyed young men in this film and think that there is hope for us yet. Things look rosy if this is an early portrait of our future leaders. Then again, there are others who note that these young men have already learned the power of mudslinging and smear campaigns. I shudder to think of what the future might look like if they are already so adept at playing dirty politics.Any film that can stir up such a range of emotions is obviously very well made. Kudos to the filmmakers who reportedly deployed a half-dozen camera teams in order to cover the sprawling event. And credit them for being smart enough in pre-production to be able to lock onto the major candidates, even though they were unknown students mere days before the event began. It’s not a perfect film. The documentary might have benefitted by showcasing a few other points of view. It should also be noted that, according to my sister, Girls State is where the real drama happens.Perhaps there’s a sequel to come. Either way, Boys State is a fascinating documentary and a thrilling/terrifying look at America’s political future—a must see for anyone who is a political junkie.Boys State is streaming exclusively on Apple TV+. Movie reviews by Sean McBride, “The Movie Guy,” are published each week by Port Arthur Newsmedia and seen weekly on KFDM and Fox4. Sean welcomes your comments via email at [email protected] Boys State is the annual program sponsored by the American Legion where high school students are given a crash course on the American political system. They gather to form a mock legislature and campaign to be elected as the teenage versions of governors, senators and judges.I took part in the program in 1983, and while I recall it being a lot of fun, it didn’t ignite a passion in me for political service. I wonder if things might have been different if I’d attended the Boys State at the center on the new Apple+ documentary.Boys State takes place at the Texas gathering in 2018 and follows a handful of boys as they careen through their mock election process. At its most basic level, this film recreates the tension of a national political race. The filmmakers have been following a handful of the participants, so it’s only natural that we would be invested in the outcome of their campaigns. Boys StateApple TV+Directed by Amanda McBaine and Jesse MossRated PG-13last_img read more

The Wisdom Your Body Knows

first_imgThis has been a golden age for brain research. We now have amazing brain scans that show which networks in the brain ramp up during different activities. But this emphasis on the brain has subtly fed the illusion that thinking happens only from the neck up. It’s fed the illusion that the advanced parts of our thinking are the “rational” parts up top that try to control the more “primitive” parts down below. … … Lisa Feldman Barrett, of Northeastern University, also argues that a main purpose of the brain is to read the body, and to regulate what she calls the body budget. You may see a bully on the playground. Your brain then predicts your next action and speeds your heart rate and breathing to deal with it. You experience these changes as emotion — oh, this is fear or oh, this is anger — because your brain has created an emotion concept to make those physical changes meaningful. Read the whole story: The New York Times More of our Members in the Media > One of the leaders in this field is Stephen W. Porges of Indiana University. When you enter a new situation, Porges argues, your body reacts. Your heart rate may go up. Your blood pressure may change. Signals go up to the brain, which records the “autonomic state” you are in.last_img read more

72 days that shaped South Africa (11)

first_imgJust how “miraculous” was South Africa’s transition from apartheid to democracy? How close did the country really come to civil war?Check out our press clipping snapshots of the 72 days leading up to Nelson Mandela’s inauguration as SA’s first democratically elected President – and see how heavily the odds were stacked against “the rainbow nation”.9 MAY 1994World’s rich and powerful arrive in SAA who’s who of the world has arrived in South Africa for tomorrow’s inauguration of president-elect Nelson Mandela.Prince Philip of Britain, United Nations secretary-general Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali, United States Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his deputy Joshua Nkomo are among those already in the country.And today, the flow of dignitaries continued with the arrival of delegations from the Middle East and Far East.The Star, Monday 9 May 1994New South Africa has landedCape Town – Yesterday morning’s Flight SA373 from Johannesburg was not ordinary. It carried, along with a smattering of everyday passengers, a hefty chunk of South Africa’s first ever nonracial Parliament.In years gone by, flights to Cape Town on the eve of parliamentary sittings were also filled with MPs. But in those days, the overwhelming majority were white.The Star, Monday 9 May 199410 MAY 1994The world at Mandela’s feetToday will see the climax of a breathtaking two days in the history of South Africa. Mr Nelson Mandela, elected by Parliament in Cape Town yesterday as South Africa’s new president, will be inaugurated at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.His election yesterday was an event filled with joy and emotion. It started with outgoing President FW de Klerk leading Mandela into the chamber of Parliament. They embraced to rapturous applause from newly elected MPs and guests in the public gallery.Mandela also embraced Inkatha Freedom Party leader Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi when he saw him walking towards him.The land of miracles was seeing a momentous event unfolding every few minutes.Sowetan, Tuesday 10 May 1994Mandela and FW express optimismOn the eve of changing the reins of power, South Africa’s outgoing and incoming presidents last night called for reconciliation and expressed confidence in the country’s future.Outgoing president FW de Klerk told a civic banquet in Pretoria that he would play his part so that reconciliation became reality. President Nelson Mandela said it was necessary to join hands to promote the spirit of reconciliation to build the country.The Star, Tuesday 10 May 1994Gore’s night at the MarketJohannesburg’s Market Theatre complex last night became the site of an awesome security spectacle as one of America’s most prized politicians arrived for a night of entertainment.US vice-president Al Gore and his wife “Tipper”, First Lady Hillary Clinton and Jesse Jackson were but a few big names who swept into The Laager theatre to watch extracts of South Africa’s theatrical genius.Patrons temporarily detained in The Yard restaurant opposite the theatre entrance were astonished to see six black limousines cruise swiftly into the precinct, which was tightly guarded by US secret service agents.The only SAF presence was in the form of two black-clad snipers on the theatre roof.The Star, Tuesday 10 May 199411 MAY 1994Let’s build a great SA, says MandelaPretoria – South Africans should forget the past and work together to build a great country, President Nelson Mandela told an excited, cheering crowd of 60 000 people attending his inauguration at the Union Buildings yesterday.Before starting his speech to the people gathered on the Botha Lawn, Mandela danced briefly to the music of the African Jazz Pioneers, and the crowd danced delightedly with him.In a carnival atmosphere, a group of youths ran across the lawn holding aloft a coffin with “hamba kahle apartheid” (farewell apartheid) painted on the side.Earlier, after he had taken his oath of office, Mandela told almost 60 heads of state, royalty and 6 000 other dignitaries that South Africa, the “rainbow nation”, had at last achieved its political emancipation.In his address, Mandela vowed that “never, never, and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will experience the oppression of one by another”.Business Day, Wednesday 11 May 1994Big welcome from world leadersPretoria – UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali welcomed South Africa back into the world community yesterday, paying tribute to President Nelson Mandela and his deputy FW de Klerk.“Today South Africa regained its rightful place in Africa, in the UN, and the family of nations”, he said at Mandela’s inauguration lunch at the Presidency.“South Africa has earned the respect and admiration of all; tireless in search of understanding, and vigorous in pursuit of peace. You have refused to let difficulties defeat you.”Business Day, Wednesday 11 May 1994Years of enmity end as Castro meets De Klerk and defence chiefPretoria – An atmosphere of reconciliation prevailed as Cuban leader Fidel Castro chatted with former arch-enemies Deputy President FW de Klerk and defence force chief Gen Georg Meiring and President Mandela welcomed three of his former jailers to yesterday’s inauguration luncheon.Business Day, Wednesday 11 May 1994The story continued …1 – 6 March 19947 – 13 March 199414 – 20 March 199421 – 27 March 199428 March – 3 April 19944 – 10 April 199411 – 17 April 199418 – 24 April 199425 April – 1 May 19942 – 8 May 19949 – 11 May 1994Research, photos: Ndaba DlaminiWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Is a confidentiality provision in an employee settlement agreement worth the paper it’s printed on?

first_imgA reader emailed me yesterday.“Hey Eric, Clients are wondering about value of settlement NDAs after ex-Fox News HWE victims go public despite contracts. Your reaction?”Wait! You mean employees actually violate confidentiality provisions?I know, right?By way of brief background, in late July, New York ran a story by Gabriel Sherman, suggesting a recent high-profile example. That is, two female Fox employees were allegedly sexually harassed by former Fox News boss, Roger Ailes. The Sherman story includes details of a 2011 settlement agreement between the women and Fox. An agreement that supposedly included “extensive nondisclosure provisions.”Now, before I react to the reader question, I remind everyone of the standard disclaimer.My initial reaction was shock. Specifically, I was shocked to learn that: (a) someone other than my father reads this blog; and (b) someone other than my father would take the time to email me about the blog. [Ok, before I really react, I’m going to ignore the National Labor Relations Act and other EEO/anti-retaliation considerations here. I’m assuming that they do not exist. I’m also assuming that most employees do abide by non-disclosure provisions. I’m not that cynical. Not on Thursdays, at least.]For me, the answer is easy: if you want a non-disclosure provision to have value, then assign it some value. I’m not talking about that boilerplate language about how confidentiality is a material term of the agreement. It doesn’t hurt to have that language, but, it’s not going to dissuade someone who wants to share the terms of the agreement from actually sharing them.No, you need something with real teeth. I’m a believer that the mere specter of financial loss is enough to deter someone from talking.But, ok. How much loss? And will it be enforceable?One option is to provide that an employee who breaches confidentiality must pay actual damages to the employer, including the attorney’s fees and costs incurred in enforcing the settlement agreement. Courts regularly enforce these “actual damages” provisions. But, good luck demonstrating actual damages. Most times, the juice won’t be worth the squeeze. But, I’ve never sought enforcement of one of these.Another option is a liquidated damages provision. Here in Pennsylvania, you can assess liquidated damages where actual loss is hard to calculate and the liquidated damages amount is a reasonable estimate of damages. From my ERISA days, twenty percent of the settlement amount sounds about right. And, the nice thing about twenty percent is that, rarely, does the employee balk at the provision. But, I’ve never sought enforcement of one of these.Yet another option I’ve seen (and used from time to time) is a more draconian provision requiring repayment of the entire settlement sum (including any share paid to the employee’s lawyer) less $500. This provision is all about flexing enough muscle to discourage an employee from testing it. Of course, it comes with enforcement risks (it screams “unreasonable.”) Thus, this is not a provision I’d employ with a large settlement sum. However, in a smaller settlement, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it knowing the opportunity cost to the employee, which would include paying an attorney to defend. But, I’ve never sought enforcement of one of these.Ultimately, my evidence here is all anecdotal. That is, rarely am I presented with hard facts to support a non-disclosure breach. And, then, there’s the prospect of throwing good money after bad to enforce. Plus, I’ve never sought enforcement.I’d like to hear from you.Since I don’t really have a great answer, email me and let me know how you have navigated confidentiality provisions in employment-related settlement agreements.Originally posted on the Employer Handbook Blog.last_img read more

MoBay Expects To Earn Us9 Million During Reggae Sumfest

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppMONTEGO BAY, June 24 (JIS): Some US$9 million is expected to be injected into the economy of Montego Bay, St. James, during the staging of Reggae Sumfest 2015, at the Catherine Hall Entertainment Centre, in the city, from July 12 to 18.Speaking to JIS News during the Montego Bay launch of the festival, at the IberoStar Resort in Rose Hall, St. James, on June 23, Chairman of Summerfest Productions Limited, the promoters of Reggae Sumfest, Robert Russell, said all is in place for the staging of the 23rd renewal of the event, dubbed “the Greatest Reggae Show on Earth.”Mr. Russell said based on figures from the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), 6,000 visitors come to the island for the festival each year, and this year should be no exception.“The Tourist Board estimates that they spend about US$1,500 per person, and that equates to about US$9 million injected into the economy of Montego Bay and Jamaica,” he noted.Mr. Russell pointed out that the festival has become a staple in the entertainment industry and continues to attract visitors from every continent on the globe.“You cannot find a better event, a better show to come and spend a week and Montego Bay is just a part of that magic. It’s not just reggae, it’s not just Sumfest, it’s also Montego Bay and Jamaica as a destination,” he said.Mr. Russell said the festival is not only assisting to develop the music industry, but also the career of artistes.“Every year you have talent scouts and management teams and recording labels that come to Sumfest to see who is new and what is on the scene in terms of music. A number of artistes started on the Sumfest scene. All the big names in reggae music literally started on the Sumfest scene,” he added.Meanwhile, Western Regional Director of the JTB, Janice Allen, said the festival has always received the full endorsement of the JTB and the agency is back on board as a sponsor this year.“The Jamaica Tourist Board is always supportive of this kind of event, which attracts a substantial audience and draws attention to our culture, and importantly to attract significant members of the media. In other words, events like Reggae Sumfest enable us to market a more diverse product to the world,” she said.Ms. Allen pointed out that Reggae Sumfest also forms part of the Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment’s ‘90 days of summer’ promotion, which was launched last year.Main attractions at this year’s show include American entertainers, Jennifer Hudson, Rappers Common, Rick Ross and Yazz as well as the major local singers, sing- jays and DJs. Montego Bay’s Elegant Corridor ‘Lights Up’ Related Items:Janice Allen, montego bay, Reggae Sumfest, Western Regional Director of the JTB Mayor Of Montego Bay Highlights City’s Achievements Sandals’ Ceo Stewart’s A Winner… Again! Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

Bahamas Fantastic Four off to Mexico City

first_img Related Items: Elana MackeyThe trip is being sponsored by the company Compass, IC of The Bahamas and IC of Mexico.   The Council of International Lawn Tennis Clubs has as its slogan, “Hands across the net, friendship across the ocean”Press Release: DPA News Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppDonte Armbrister#Bahamas, November 4, 2017 – Nassau – The year was 2013, when gold was won for The Bahamas by the Fantastic Four:  Donte Armbrister, Jacobi Bain, Sydney Clarke and Elana Mackey at the “Inaugural ITF/GSDF  12U Team Championship” for the English-Speaking Caribbean in Jamaica.   Now four years later, the Fantastic Four have come together one more time to represent their country at the Compass North American IC 16 and Under Junior Challenge in Mexico City.Jacobi BainThe 3-day tournament will be held at Club Raquetas Bosques.  Our IC Bahamas Junior Team will play in a round-robin format in singles and doubles events each day against two teams from Mexico and one from the United States.   It is expected to be a very competitive tournament.   The winning team will advance to the Compass Worldwide Finals in Tokyo, Japan October 8 – 12, 2018 with winning teams from other continents. Sydney ClarkeThe Team, captained by Mr. Kit Spencer, President of IC Bahamas, departs Nassau today and returns on Friday, November 10, 2017.   Monday is the official practice day together with a philanthropy clinic for local ball boys.   Our Team will assist with the clinic as a form of “giving back”.   Match play begins on Tuesday.last_img read more

Supervisors say farewell to outgoing board members Horn Roberts

first_img KUSI Newsroom, KUSI Newsroom Posted: December 12, 2018 Supervisors say farewell to outgoing board members Horn, Roberts December 12, 2018 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Members of the San Diego County Board of Supervisors Wednesday saluted two termed-out colleagues, Bill Horn and Ron Roberts, for their decades of leadership in local government.Horn and Roberts offered brief reflections on their public service and received a standing ovation from their colleagues during a meeting of the board at the County Administration Center.A former Marine and business owner who served on the Escondido Union High School District board in the early 1990s, Horn was first elected as a county supervisor in 1994 for District 5, an area that spans roughly 1,800 square miles from the Pacific Ocean to Imperial County.Roberts, an architect and former San Diego councilman, was elected to the board in 1994 to represent District 4, which encompasses dozens of neighborhoods, mostly within that city’s boundaries.Former San Marcos Mayor Jim Desmond won Horn’s seat last month, while former state Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher was elected to replace Roberts.During his time on the board, Horn told his colleagues that he “tried to be a champion for North County,” adding that he hoped “the voters look at it that way.”Horn said the county is in good financial shape because board members had managed to agree on major issues and served their constituents well.When he and Roberts joined the legislative body, Horn recalled, they were told the county needed to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Instead, its leaders froze budgets, paid down bonds and sold off trash service.Along with his staff and other county departments, Horn thanked first responders for their efforts, especially during major wildfires.Roberts, for his part, said he would not trade his 31 years in government for anything. He credited numerous staff members for putting the county on a stable course.“I thank all of you collectively for your friendship, support and camaraderie,” Roberts said.He also praised citizens and community groups for their efforts on numerous projects, asserting that “they’re why we do this work.”Roberts cited Veterans’ Village on Pacific Highway, the county operations center in Kearny Mesa, several sporting facilities, and Waterfront Park on Harbor Drive as major achievements in which he took part. He called the latter civic amenity “a landmark in San Diego — you can travel all over and won’t find anything like it.”Board Chairwoman Kristin Gaspar described the two termed-out politicos’ final remarks as “a long goodbye.”Supervisor Greg Cox called the departure of Horn and Roberts the end of an era. He credited Roberts for being a fierce advocate of foster children who “never stopped thinking about ways to make San Diego a better place to live.”“Without Ron, there would have been no Waterfront Park,” Cox said. “Ron (also) was the driving force behind the county operations center.”As for Horn, whose tenure at times could be controversial, Cox said the ex-Marine deserves credit for strong support of veterans and, outside the county purview, humanitarian work in Uganda.“There’s a side of Bill that most people aren’t aware of,” Cox said. “His gruff exterior hides the fact that he cares about people.”Supervisor Dianne Jacob opined that Horn and Roberts would leave lasting legacies.“There are times we have fought in public, but in the end, we’re like family,” she said.Jacob lauded the two men’s efforts to improve public safety and secure better pay for law enforcement personnel. She added that they were instrumental in transformed the county from near-insolvency in the 1990s to a regional government that boasts a “triple A” credit rating.County Chief Administrative Officer Helen Robbins-Meyer said Horn and Roberts “always treated staff as if it’s one team working together.” As a parting gift, she presented them with a book documenting their successes on county programs and projects. Categories: Local San Diego News, Politics FacebookTwitterlast_img read more