On the campaign trail, July 2012

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The following is the ninth in a monthly series chronicling the U.S. 2012 presidential election. It features original material compiled throughout the previous month after a brief mention of some of the month’s biggest stories.

In this month’s edition on the campaign trail: the rules of third party candidate polling are examined, a third party activist causes four other parties to lose their place on the Illinois presidential ballot, and the new vice presidential nominee of the Justice Party speaks with Wikinews.


  • 1 Summary
  • 2 Polling rules restrict and fuel third party campaigns
  • 3 Ballot access denied in Illinois
  • 4 Wikinews interviews newly-selected Justice Party VP nominee
  • 5 Related news
  • 6 Sources

Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ian Narev, the CEO of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, this morning “unreservedly” apologised to clients who lost money in a scandal involving the bank’s financial planning services arm.

Last week, a Senate enquiry found financial advisers from the Commonwealth Bank had made high-risk investments of clients’ money without the clients’ permission, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars lost. The Senate enquiry called for a Royal Commission into the bank, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

Mr Narev stated the bank’s performance in providing financial advice was “unacceptable”, and the bank was launching a scheme to compensate clients who lost money due to the planners’ actions.

In a statement Mr Narev said, “Poor advice provided by some of our advisers between 2003 and 2012 caused financial loss and distress and I am truly sorry for that. […] There have been changes in management, structure and culture. We have also invested in new systems, implemented new processes, enhanced adviser supervision and improved training.”

An investigation by Fairfax Media instigated the Senate inquiry into the Commonwealth Bank’s financial planning division and ASIC.

Whistleblower Jeff Morris, who reported the misconduct of the bank to ASIC six years ago, said in an article for The Sydney Morning Herald that neither the bank nor ASIC should be in control of the compensation program.

Until Smoke

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Isidro Merrill

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Canadian government announces major tax reductions

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced a five-year program that could reduce taxes by a total C$60 billion.

The planned tax reduction measures include:

  • Low-end personal income tax rates would be reduced from 15.5% to 15%, taking retroactive effect to the start of 2007;
  • The basic personal exemption, the amount at which income is taxable, is raised from C$8,929 to C$9,600, also backdated to January 2007;
  • Business tax rates are expected regularly drop from the current 20.5% to 15% in 2012;
  • The Goods and Services Tax that applies to most purchases would be reduced from 6% to 5% as 2008 begins. This rate was previously reduced from 7% July 2006, shortly after Prime Minister Stephen Harper took office.

These measures will be brought before the House of Commons in Ottawa on Wednesday as a confidence motion. In Canada’s minority government situation, opposition parties could defeat these measures and likely prompt an election. However, opposition leader Stéphane Dion has expressed an unwillingness to defeat the government on this matter.

California meat packing firm recalls 143M pounds of beef

Sunday, February 17, 2008

I am dismayed at the in-humane handling of cattle that has resulted in the violation of food safety regulations at the Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company.

In a press release today, California-based Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Co. indicated that it has voluntarily recalled just over 143 million pounds (65 million kilograms) of raw and frozen beef products, which is considered to be the largest single recall of beef products in U.S. history. The move follows an investigation by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) into allegations of animal cruelty and mishandling of cattle destined for the human food chain.

The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) had determined that beef products produced by the Chino, California company were unfit for human consumption as the cattle had not received “complete and proper inspection.”

The recall has been designated as Class II, which the USDA describes as “a health hazard situation where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product.”

On Friday, Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer indicated that charges had been laid against employees of the plant alleged to have taken part in the mistreatment of cattle. “Today [Friday], the San Bernardino District Attorney filed felony animal cruelty charges against two employees who were terminated by Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company,” said Schafer. “It is regrettable that these animals were mistreated and I am encouraged and supportive of these actions by the San Bernardino District Attorney in response to this mistreatment.”

The USDA learned of the possible inhumane handling of non-ambulatory (disabled) cattle at the packing plant on January 30 and has since suspended activities at the plant. “We continue to conduct a thorough investigation into whether any violations of food safety or additional humane handling regulations have occurred,” said Secretary Schafer in a press release. “On February 8, our Office of the Inspector General took the lead on the investigation. At that time, USDA extended the administrative hold on Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company products for the National School Lunch Program, the Emergency Food Assistance Program and the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations while the investigation continues,” said Schafer.

The FSIS reported that Hallmark/Westland had not contacted the FSIS public health veterinarian, as required, when cattle became ill or disabled after undergoing ante-mortem (slaughter) inspection, putting the company out of compliance with FSIS regulations. “Because the cattle did not receive complete and proper inspection FSIS has determined them to be unfit for human food and the company is conducting a recall,” explained Secretary Schafer.

The cruelty charges stem from an undercover video that reportedly showed sick cattle being moved by crews using forklifts.

“Words cannot accurately express how shocked and horrified I was at the depictions contained on the video that was taken by an individual who worked at our facility from October 3 thru November 14, 2007,” said Steve Mendell, President, Westland Meat Co. and Hallmark Meat Packing. “We have taken swift action regarding the two employees identified on the video and have already implemented aggressive measures to ensure all employees follow our humane handling policies and procedures. We are also cooperating with the USDA investigators on the allegations of inhumane handling treatment which is a serious breech of our company’s policies and training.”

The USDA stressed that it is “extremely unlikely” that the cattle involved were at risk for Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or mad-cow disease due to the employment of multiple safeguards. The USDA felt the recall was required, however, as the plant had allegedly violated USDA regulations.

The recall involves raw and frozen beef products produced on various dates from February 1, 2006 to February 2, 2008. For further information about the recall, consumers, media, and distributors are encouraged to contact Hallmark/Westland’s Plant Manager Stan Mendell or Food Safety Consultant Steve Sayer at (909) 590-3340 or the FSIS website, www.fsis.usda.gov.

Download Fake Medical Practitioners Notes Working With Doctors Notes Printable As Excuse Letters For College Or Get The Job Done

Submitted by: Joshui Long

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About the Author: I am a developing higher education student who is in love with jogging on a treadmill.





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Wikinews interviews specialists on China, Iran, Russia support for al-Assad

Monday, September 23, 2013

Over the past week, diplomatic actions have averted — or, at least delayed — military strikes on Syria by the United States. Wikinews sought input from a range of international experts on the situation; and, the tensions caused by Russia’s support for the al-Assad regime despite its apparent use of chemical weapons.


  • 1 Interviewees
  • 2 Wikinews Q&A
    • 2.1 China
    • 2.2 Iran
    • 2.3 Russia
  • 3 Related news

File:Ghouta chemical attack map.svg

Tensions in the country increased dramatically, late August when it was reported between 100 and 1,300 people were killed in an alleged chemical attack. Many of those killed appeared to be children, with some of the pictures and video coming out of the country showing — according to witnesses — those who died from apparent suffocation; some foaming at the mouth, others having convulsions.

Amongst Syria’s few remaining allies, Iran, China, and Russia continue to oppose calls for military intervention. In an effort to provide a better-understanding of the reasoning behind their ongoing support, the following people were posed a range of questions.

Charles Lazarus, founder of US-based toy retail giant Toys ‘R’ Us, dies at 94

Saturday, March 24, 2018

On Thursday, Charles Lazarus, the founder of United States toy retailer Toys “R” Us, died in Manhattan, New York, New York of respiratory failure. He was 94. His death came a week after Toys “R” Us announced that all of the stores were closing.

Toys “R” Us issued a statement in which they said, “There have been many sad moments for Toys “R” Us in recent weeks, and none more heartbreaking than today’s news about the passing of our beloved founder, Charles Lazarus. He visited us in New Jersey just last year and we will forever be grateful for his positive energy, passion for the customer and love for children everywhere. Our thoughts and prayers are with Charles’ family and loved ones.”

Michael Goldstein, who was a close friend and former Toys “R” Us chairman, said: “He was the father of the toy business. He knew the toys and loved the toys and loved the kids who would shop in the stores. His face lit up when he watched kids playing with toys.” In a phone interview Goldstein said that Charles Lazarus died in Manhattan.

Lazarus no longer held a stake in the chain, CNN reported. Lazarus took over his father’s bicycle repair shop in 1948 at the age of 25 and changed it to baby furniture. He opened the first Toys “R” Us store in 1957. Lazarus had remained its CEO until 1994.

Free Restaurant Schedule Template: Its Many Uses In Restaurant Operations

By Jerome Chiaro

If you feel constrained by the limits of your budget, then alternative options, such as a free restaurant schedule template for employee shifts, daily cleaning, and reservations, can lessen the burden of spending on additional office supplies and hiring new people just to create the schedules for you.

A free restaurant schedule template may seem unreliable or inauthentic, but they are a cheap way of avoiding needless spending. If you are a struggling restaurateur, then your may appreciate using such restaurant templates to create your employee shift schedules, daily cleaning schedules, and table reservation schedules.

Known for their irregular work schedules, restaurants continually change employee shifts to meet the needs of a demanding public. Within a day, lunch and dinner are the busiest hours, and during these times, a restaurant has the most number of employees waiting tables, handling the cash register, and staffing the kitchen. A good employee shift schedule decreases the stress of managing restaurant staff and increases productivity of your employees.

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The use of a free restaurant schedule template for shift planning, however, presumes a paper schedule, which many experienced restaurant managers deem time consuming. A restaurant template is only valuable to restaurant managers and owners who may lack extra funds to pay for a subscription to an online service, such as HotSchedules, ShiftPlanning or TimeForge.

Both online and traditional methods consider the following factors when scheduling work shifts: employee abilities and skills, anticipated sales, individual work habits, food preparation, employee availability, individual work requests, certifications required for handling alcohol, and overall labor costs. The manager needs the request book and availability sheets to match each employee to a specific shift schedule.

No matter what option budding restaurateurs take, employee scheduling is a very important aspect of restaurant management because it controls labor costs and reduces employee turnover. It also streamlines workflow systematically; thus, reducing operating costs and increasing employee productivity.

Aside from employee scheduling, a free restaurant schedule template also finds itself an invaluable tool in setting up daily or weekly cleaning schedules in a bustling restaurant business. Cleaning and maintenance procedures often require specific steps because of the machines and the chemicals used. For example, cleaning a fully equipped restaurant kitchen with large ovens, dishwashers and a variety of kitchen utensils follows safety procedures to guard against employee accidents and damage to the equipment.

In another area of restaurant operations, such as table reservations and event bookings, the use of a free restaurant schedule template could prove useful, especially during peak seasons when the volume of customers increase and more special occasions happen than in any other month.

Similar to employee scheduling, the restaurant manager would need the request book for reservations and bookings, the food costs, the labor costs, and the employee availability sheets to fit them together to a manageable schedule. Of course, a restaurant manager is not expected to work on scheduling alone. A team of two or three assistants adds more organizational consistency and decreases scheduling errors because more than one person handles the information.

About the Author: Jerome Chiaro is a Restaurant Owner & Consultant out of Orange County, CA. Did you know that 95% of restaurant owners and managers spend over 55 hours per week slaving away at their restaurant! He can help you WORK LESS and PROFIT MORE… Claim your copy of his Free Restaurant Forms Toolkit. Success doesn’t happen alone! Join a mastermind of restaurant owners and a wealth of resources, at his Free Restaurant Forms Blog.

Source: isnare.com

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Russian territory expands by 4.5 square kilometres after seismic activity

Saturday, November 14, 2009

According to scientists, the land territory of Russia has expanded by about 4.5 square kilometres within the last few years in the Far East due to seismic and volcanic activity.

The gained land was recorded in the Sakhalin Peninsula. Boris Levin, head of the Institute for Sea Geology and Geophysics of the Russian Academy of Sciences, said that the increase happened primarily due to two seismic events.

The first, in August of 2007, was when a heavy 6.8 earthquake near the city of Nevelsk in the Far East raised about three square kilometres of seabed above the level of the water. The second was in June of this year, when the Sarychev Peak volcano on the Matua Island erupted. GPS trackers on the Matua island were used to monitor the eruption, and the volcano changed its shape, adding 1.5 square kilometres of land, scientists said.

Geologists also reported that the Kuril Islands nearby were slowly moving towards mainland Russia at an estimated rate of eighteen milimetres per year.