Wikinews wanders the Referendum-year Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Wikinews wanders the Referendum-year Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

With many venues reporting sell-out shows, the 68th year of the Edinburgh Festival attracted visitors from around the globe. Wikinews’ Brian McNeil roamed the city for the four weeks of the event, capturing the colour, spectacle, and comedy, in photos.

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ANZACs remembered ninety years after assault on Gallipoli

ANZACs remembered ninety years after assault on Gallipoli

Monday, April 25, 2005

Australians and New Zealanders throughout the world stood still for their national war memorial days in remembrance of the failed Australian and New Zealand Army Corps — ANZAC — attack on Gallipoli, Turkey that began on 25 April 1915. The fateful attack was designed to end the First World War more quickly by creating a supply line to Russia. A hundred-thousand died in the battle, remembered every year as ANZAC Day by both nations.

The British-directed battle of Gallipoli is often seen as the defining moment in the ‘birth’ of Australia and New Zealand. With New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark saying “For New Zealand as for Australia it was at Gallipoli that our young nations came of age.” [1]. This being the 90th anniversary of the attack, Clark, Australian Prime Minister John Howard and Britain’s Prince Charles are all at Gallipoli to remember that fateful campaign.

Some controversy has been created about Australian Prime Minister John Howard not attending the New Zealand ceremony at Chunuk Bair on the Gallipoli Peninsula. This has upset many people as it is a break in a tradition that the Prime Ministers attend the ceremonies of both countries.

Nursing And Unions, Are You Union Made?

Submitted by: Karen P Williams

It s your first job nursing and you are wondering if joining the local nurses union is a good thing for you. You don t know much about unions and how they work but your father was a union man and he seemed to do okay.

Unions originally came about for the protection of workers who were at the mercy of the employer. Unions were organized to protect the employee from unrealistic work schedules, unsafe work conditions, abusive management practices and proper financial compensation.

A trade or labor union is an organized group of workers who have banded together to achieve common goals in key areas. The union leadership is the bargaining entity that negotiates the labor contracts on behalf of the membership. The negotiations may include salaries, work rules, compensated time off, benefits, complaint procedures, hiring, firing and promotion of workers and anything else that is deemed to be important. The agreements negotiated are binding on the rank and file and the employer and sometimes on non-union workers.

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Joining a nurses union is a way of protecting the best interest of yourself and your profession. It gives the nurses an element of control and security over the work they do and the place they do it. A union will give a nurse the opportunity to be part of a united voice and a strong entity of medical professionals.

Belonging to a nursing union has its pro and cons. The upside is the union is the central bargaining agent for the entire membership and since there is strength in numbers, may be able to negotiate for premium wages, better benefits such as health care coverage, more compensated time off, paid holidays, reimbursed continuing education programs and whatever else may be on their agenda. The down side for you is the union interest may not be your interest. Your interest may be continuing education reimbursement, clinical ladder advancement and longevity compensation but the union may decide they are irrelevant issues. They may be more interested in collecting dues rather than address the issues important to you.

An example of how union negotiations might not be beneficial is this: If nurse to patient ratio is an issue, and the union negotiates a low ratio, how is that going to work if there is a shortage of nurses and there aren t enough qualified nurses to go around? Instead of negotiating those terms, perhaps the nurses and management should work together in the spirit of cooperation and come up with ways to encourage people to join the nursing profession and actually have the work force in place to make the low nurse to patient ratio work realistically.

A few questions to ask yourself about joining a nursing union are, does the union create an us versus them mentality? Does it prevent both sides of the table from working together for a common goal or keep the sides from integrating for the betterment of patient care and the medical profession in general? A union has to work for the betterment of all or it won t work for anybody. Does a union make your job nursing more efficient or does it just create more problems? When you answer those questions, you will know if joining a nurses union is for you.

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France votes no in EU referendum

France votes no in EU referendum

Sunday, May 29, 2005

In a result predicted by polls, a 54.87% majority of French voters voted non in Sunday’s European Constitution referendum. Of France’s 42 million eligible voters, over 70% turned out at the 55 thousand polling stations across the country, which were open from 8:00 to 20:00 on Sunday (except in Paris and Lyon where voting finished at 22:00, and French oversea possessions and other polling centers in the Americas, which voted on Saturday in order not to have them vote when the results are already known). A 70% turnout is very large compared to Spain 42%.

The result comes as no surprise to European political commentators as opinion polls had consistently suggested that the “No” camp was on course for a strong victory. Indeed, the last opinion poll before the actual referendum suggested a 56% win for the “No” camp.

The treaty was supported by all 3 major political parties (center-left PS, center-right UMP, center-right UDF), though a significant minority of the PS, and some in the UMP, chose to oppose it.It was opposed by the French Communist Party, as well as Trotskyite movements such as the Revolutionary Communist League, other far-left movements such as the Party of the Workers, parts of the Socialist party, parts of The Greens some members of UMP, and the nationalist National Front.

According to polls, the vast majority of blue collar workers, farmers and other categories threatened by globalization and international concurrence voted against the treaty. The urban, better educated or richer population voted in favor.

Some supporters of the “No” camp have argued that the mainstream media was biased in favor of the “yes” cause, and this was supported by some analyses of times awarded by television to both camps. However, the “no” camp also waged an aggressive campaign, with the walls of major cities being plastered with posters linking the EU Constitution and the European Union to all kind of social ills, such as high unemployment.

You can read the entire proposed European Constitution at Wikisource


  • 1 Polls
  • 2 Arguments of the “No” vote
    • 2.1 Left-wing arguments
    • 2.2 Right-wing arguments
  • 3 Arguments of the “YES” vote
  • 4 Related news
  • 5 Sister links
  • 6 Sources
  • 7 External links

Market maker Bernard L. Madoff arrested in $50B ‘giant Ponzi scheme’

Market maker Bernard L. Madoff arrested in $50B ‘giant Ponzi scheme’
July 20th, 2018 in Uncategorized | No Comments
 Correction — January 10, 2009 This article incorrectly states that Mr Madoff attended Hofstra University Law School. His education was actually with Hofstra College, which he graduated from in 1960. 

Friday, December 12, 2008

Top broker and Wall Street adviser Bernard L. Madoff, aged 70, was arrested and charged by the FBI on Thursday with a single count of securities fraud, also known as stock fraud and investment fraud. He allegedly told senior employees of his firm on Wednesday that his $50 billion business “is all just one big lie” and that it was “basically, a giant Ponzi scheme (since at least 2005).” Mr. Madoff faces up to 20 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $5 million. FBI agent Theodore Cacioppi said Mr. Madoff’s investment advisory business had “deceived investors by operating a securities business in which he traded and lost investor money, and then paid certain investors purported returns on investment with the principal received from other, different investors, which resulted in investors’ losses of approximately $50 billion dollars.”

The former chairman of the Nasdaq Stock Market is also the founder and primary owner of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC, the closely-held market-making firm he launched in 1960. The firm is one of the top market maker firms on Wall Street. He founded his family firm with an initial investment of $5,000, after attending Hofstra University Law School. He saved the money earned from a job lifeguarding at Rockaway Beach in Queens and a part time job installing underground sprinkler systems.

A force in Wall Street trading for nearly 50 years, he has been active in the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), a self-regulatory organization for the U.S. securities industry. His firm was one of the five most active firms in the development of the NASDAQ, having been known for “paying for order flow,” in other word paying a broker to execute a customer’s order through Madoff. He argued that the payment to the broker did not alter the price that the customer received. He ran the investment advisory as a secretive business, however.

Dan Horwitz, counsel of Mr. Madoff, in an interview, said that “he is a longstanding leader in the financial-services industry with an unblemished record; he is a person of integrity; he intends to fight to get through this unfortunate event.” Mr. Madoff was released on his own recognizance on the same day of his arrest, after his 2 sons turned him in, and posting $10 million bail secured by his Manhattan apartment. Without entering any plea, the Court set the preliminary hearing for January 12.

Madoff’s hedge fund scheme may rank among the biggest fraud in history. When former energy trading giant Enron filed for bankruptcy in 2001, one of the largest at the time, it had $63.4 billion in assets. The scheme would dwarf past Ponzis, and it would further be nearly five times the telecommunication company WorldCom fraud and bankruptcy proceedings in 2002.

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a separate civil suit on Thursday against Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities and its eponymous founder Mr. Madoff. It was docketed as “U.S. v. Madoff,” 08-MAG-02735, by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (Manhattan). SEC, New York associate director of enforcement, Andrew M. Calamari, asked the judge to issue seizure orders on the firm and its assets, and appoint a receiver. The SEC pleads, among others, that “it was an ongoing $50 billion swindle; our complaint alleges a stunning fraud that appears to be of epic proportions.” It further accused the defendant of “paying returns to certain investors out of the principal received from other, different investors” for years. Madoff’s hedge fund business had previously claimed to have served between 11 and 25 clients and had $17.1 billion in assets under management. But virtually all of the assets were missing.

United States District Court for the Southern District of New York Louis L. Stanton on Thursday appointed Lee Richards, a Manhattan lawyer, as the firm’s receiver. A hearing is set for Friday, for a ruling on the SEC’s petition to grant plenary powers to the receiver over the entire firm, and an absolute asset sequestration.

Doug Kass, president of hedge fund Seabreeze Partners Management said that “this is a major blow to confidence that is already shattered — anyone on the fence will probably try to take their money out.”

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock
July 19th, 2018 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Homebush Bay, New South Wales —Wikinews sat down with Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock before a practice session at the Rollers & Gliders World Challenge in Sydney.

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British-born Pollock was born with the condition spina bifida. He explained he could walk with difficulty up until age twelve or thirteen, after which he began using a wheelchair. Shortly after this, he began playing wheelchair basketball. He attended a disabilities tournament for children with disabilities in England, where he tried both wheelchair basketball, since he came from a town where team sports were popular; and wheelchair tennis, as he’d played with an able-bodied friend. Ultimately, he chose wheelchair basketball as it was a team sport.

Wikinews asked Pollock about being loud towards his team mates during the match on July 20 between the Australian Rollers and the Great Britain Bulldogs. He said he was out of wheelchair basketball for nine months due to a pressure sore and surgery on his shoulder, and has been making a comeback since January, with the doctors and physiotherapists giving him the all-clear in April. On that night, he said, the Australian team used bullying tactics and some of his teammates on the British team didn’t step up to win the game. He also said that no matter what team his team plays against, he has a target on his back because of his calibre of playing in the game, and his team failed to to understand it that night, leaving him frustrated with his team and himself; and, he hates coming to Australia during a Paralympic year since the home town —that is, Australian— referees do not protect the visiting team from the home team’s dirty playing, which puts the British team’s gold medal prospects in jeopardy.

Wikinews also asked Pollock his opinions regarding Oscar Pistorius. Pollock believes Pistorius shouldn’t be competing in the Olympics if other Paralympic athletes can’t compete. He also mentioned reservations about certain technical aspects, such as whether Pistorius would be the same height if he still had his legs rather then his prosthetic legs. Asked about 5 point players playing in wheelchair basketball, he said he believes 5 point players can play with other point players but not in the Paralympics, and said 5 point players currently play in the domestic league but not at the elite level, to boost the number of players participating and to help the development of the game.

Wikinews also questioned him about tattoos worn by members of the British team. In previous years, he said, only one or two forwards had tattoos, but now almost everyone has one as having tattoos is currently in fashion. He said he got his first tattoo at the age of sixteen and only recently had it removed. He also has tattoos on his right arm, depicting the logos of the Paralympics and World championships in which he competed.

Pollocks’s team begins its London campaign on August 30, against the Germany men’s national wheelchair basketball team.

Court rules teen must take chemotherapy

Court rules teen must take chemotherapy
July 19th, 2018 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Monday, May 18, 2009

A judge in Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States ruled that a boy, Daniel Hauser, has been medically neglected by his parents and must take chemotherapy and radiation therapy for his cancer against his will.

Medical professionals testifying at the proceedings said that Daniel’s cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, has a 90% survival rate with modern treatment, but only a 10% chance of survival without it.

The judge declared that the ruling was because there was a “compelling state interest in the life and welfare of Daniel sufficient to override the fundamental constitutional rights of both the parents and Daniel to the free exercise of religion and the due process right of the parents to direct the religious and other upbringing of their child.” as noted in his 60 page verdict.

The boy lives in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota and his mother is a member of the Nemenhah, a Native American style group that opposes medical practices that it believes to “harm the body.”

His parents first brought him for one out of six chemotherapy treatments and then refused to have the rest. In an initial filing, Daniel said that he was a medicine man and he himself made the decision to refuse the chemotherapy. An important question in the case was whether Daniel truly made the decision to refuse treatment, or whether he was pressured by his parents.

A vital piece of evidence was presented by a Thomas Sinas, an attorney for the boy’s court appointed guardian who doubted Daniel’s religious beliefs. Daniel also gave closed door testimony to the judge. The statement was released, and stated that Daniel’s faith wasn’t genuine, that he was shaken by the effects of his aunt’s chemotherapy.

“This matter … involves a 13-year-old child who has only a rudimentary understanding at best of the risks and benefits of chemotherapy,” said Judge John Rodenberg, “He genuinely opposes the imposition of chemotherapy. However, he does not believe he is ill currently. The fact is that he is very ill currently.”

Daniel’s court-appointed defense attorney, Philip Elbert, said, “I feel it’s a blow to families, it marginalizes the decisions that parents face every day in regard to their children’s medical care. It really affirms the role that big government is better at making our decisions for us.”

Daniel’s parents will be required to give him a chest X-ray and proceed to give him chemotherapy and radiation therapy if a doctor says that they would still be effective. If they refuse to comply, Daniel will be taken into custody.

Daniel’s mother, Colleen Hauser, said, “If Daniel resists, it is a great question of how he will be treated. He may have to be sedated and that brings up the issue of forced treatment.”

The judge said that the court has a right to force treatment because Daniel does not understand his illness and the risks and benefits of therapy enough to create an informed consent.

Arabs react to Israeli debate on Jerusalem’s Holy sites

Arabs react to Israeli debate on Jerusalem’s Holy sites
July 19th, 2018 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Islamic and Jordanian leaders responded yesterday to a debate conducted by the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, addressing current Arab control over holy sites in the Old City of Jerusalem including Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock.

Last week, members of the Jordanian Parliament condemned the plan for a debate in the Knesset on the issue, but yesterday after the debate in Israel almost 50 of them had petitioned the Jordanian government to stop the enforcement of the 1994 Israel–Jordan peace treaty. The treaty allowed for the exchange of ambassadors and on that point, the Jordanian parliament voted on the recall of the nation’s ambassador to Israel. Jordan’s Prime Minister Abdullah Nsur said, in remarks to Qatari newspaper Al-Watan, any Israeli action affecting Jordanian control of the Holy sites would violate the treaty and Jordan could review whether or not the treaty had been invalidated. Meanwhile, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation criticized the Knesset debate as a provocation.

Before the Israeli debate Tuesday, Palestinian protesters took to one of the Gates of the Temple Mount in the Old City, used by Jews, armed with firecrackers and rocks and were met by Israeli police.

On Tuesday, members of the Israeli Knesset began a debate on an issue it had never before broached. MK Moshe Feiglin of Likud started the debate about one of Jerusalem’s holiest sites, The Temple Mount. Feiglin spoke to freedom of religion and the right of Israelis to pray on the site controlled by the Arabs while opponents addressed their fears the sensitive topic could harm ongoing peace talks. He said, “Any terror organization can raise its flag there, [but] there can be no trace of the Israeli flag. Only Jews are forbidden to pray at this place.”

During the debate, Labor MK Eitan Cabel reacted to Feiglin’s motion, “Why stop at the Temple Mount? If you are the new messiah of our times, what about” — he named various specifics of the holy promise of the lands of the Greater Israel — “Why leave them behind?” A “Greater Israel” promised by God is generally considered off limits in civic discourse inside Israel. The Knesset did not vote on the issue.

Al-Aqsa Mosque ranks just behind Mecca and Medina as the holiest of Islamic sites. Jews consider the Temple Mount to be their holiest site.

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The Al-Aqsa Mosque from the Western Wall Plaza. Image: Wilson44691.

Southern aerial view of the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. Image: Godot13.

The portal of the Al-Aqsa Mosque from the north. Image: Godot13.

Al-Fakhriyyah Minaret & Islamic Museum. Image: Godot13.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Image: Jane Fresco.

The Dome of the Rock (close). Image: ???? ??????.

The outdoor Islamic Pulpit of the Cadi Borhan-ed-din Jerusalem Holy Land at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem. Image: Snapshots of The Past.

Al Aqsa Mosque from the Dome of the Rock. Image: MatthiasKabel.

The Dome of the Chain (Arabic: ??? ???????, Qubbat al-Silsila) in front of The Dome of the Rock. Image: Godot13.

Southern Wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Image: Wknight94.

British man survives artificial heart transplant

British man survives artificial heart transplant
July 19th, 2018 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A 40-year-old man from the United Kingdom has survived an operation in which he was given a wholly artificial heart. It is believed that this is the first time in the UK that a patient has been able to return home with such an implant.

Matthew Green, a father of one, experienced the operation in Papworth Hospital, located in Cambridgeshire, England. His health has declined over the last few years, and he has suffered a substantial heart disorder, identified as arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia (ARVD). He is waiting to have a human heart implanted. The disease would have claimed his life had the operation to implant a plastic heart not occurred. Approximately nine hundred operations of this nature have already taken place worldwide.

Having survived the transplant, Green stated that the plastic heart will “revolutionise” his life. “Before I couldn’t walk anywhere,” commented Green. He described his ability “to be with normal people again” as “fantastic”. Having the opportunity to live a relatively regular life “means the world” to Green.

Providing a nine-and-a-half litre blood flow at its peak, the plastic heart can provide roughly twice that of a resting human body. The artificial heart was implanted last June in a six-hour operation. Unlike other mechanical hearts, Green’s heart is powered by a pump that can be transported in a handheld bag.

Growing Plants In A Garden

July 19th, 2018 in Permaculture Magazine | No Comments

Submitted by: Matthew Kepnes

When you buy a house you want to have a wonderful garden where children can play and you can sit back and unwind. A garden is one place where we feel we are one with Nature and enjoy the small pleasures of life. But without potted plants and flowers, a home garden is incomplete. Before you choose the plants to grow in your home garden, walk around the neighborhood and take note of what kinds of plants are being planted. That ll give you an idea of what grows in your area.

You can visit your local nursery and ask for their advice, which will help you select the type of plants you will grow in your home garden. The most common plants are flowering ones, such as roses. To add a cheerful look to your garden, consider getting some sunflowers. Flowering houseplants, like Clivia or Kaffir Lily add vibrancy and a touch of the exotic. The most popular exotic house plant and garden favorite, Sambac, brings the most wonderful aroma into your home garden. Cactus is one tropical plant that doesn t need any special care. It can grow in any weather and is easy to care for.

If you are an avid gardener then you can have a patch in your garden for vegetables. Grow tomatoes, broccoli, luscious rutabaga and green vegetables in your home garden. Greens and lettuce, cumin plant and mint can also be grown as an herbal patch in your garden. If you are living in an apartment then have a few pots on your window sill of mint, tulsi, bamboo, aloe vera and curry leaves. Apart from flavor, these plants also have medicinal traits.

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If you wish to plant trees that can give out fragrance then silk mimosa will be an ideal choice. This fast growing tree has attractive fragrance and its pink flowers add beauty to its fern like leaves that are shaped like a dome. Bamboo is another tree that can be grown in your garden. The Chinese say that bamboo has mystical properties that allow it to attract wealth and prosperity. Who wouldn t want to attract those qualities?

Quality soil and sufficient water are essential to a garden for plants, flowers and trees to grow. Organic gardening is one of the safest and healthiest options out there. One of the most important secrets in organic gardening is tending to the soil. Soil is the main key to growth. A manure-rich soil will ensure that your produce will be thriving and healthy. If you add too many chemicals to the soil, it won’t be as fertile anymore. Allow earthworms and other creatures to naturally aerate the soil. These worms while moving around, till the soil that allows air to enter beneath and allow the soil to remain fertile. Use organic pesticides if you want to ensure the health of the soil and the plants. Adding dead leaves, grass and plant material will enhance the richness of the soil. This is called mulching. Manure that is rich in soil nutrients is cow dung. Many gardeners and farmers use it.

While watering your garden, see to it that it is evenly spread. Drip irrigation is one of the most important aspects of watering a garden. Nature balances itself beautifully. It is our duty to keep nature intact so that it can help us to lead a healthy and joyful life on this planet earth.

About the Author: Matthew Kepnes builds gardens. You can find out his garden tips at his websites about

figuring out his garden

and about

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