O'Reilly and his crusade against women
Written by David Kirby Friday, 02 November 2012 13:11
Bill O’Reilly, conservative pundit and Fox News anchor, aired a segment on Thursday night meant to explore one of the most sought-after voting segments in the upcoming United States election – single woman. O’Reilly dispatched producer Jesse Watters out on Halloween to interview young women enjoying the festivities and asked their views on the election, who they plan on voting for and why.
Celebrity endorsements and Vitaminwater
Friday, 02 November 2012 11:10
Just thinking about the different flavours I haven't tried yet of Vitaminwater is making me antsy, I think it might be a problem.
Vitaminwater by Glacéau is nothing more than enhanced flavoured water with cool colours and pretty packaging. I don't feel any different when I drink it since it's supposed to be filled with electrolytes and vitamins, hence the name - darn marketers and their neat ideas.
Could it be the humorous blurbs on the side of the bottles that reel me in because it reminds me of the TV show Gossip Girl? Perhaps it is the creative names they have for each flavour? Or that they actually taste really good? I just don't know.
But whatever it is, it sure has a placebo effect on me since I used to hate any flavoured water but have found this one to be just right.
In 1996 the founder, J. Darius Bikoff developed the enhanced line of water as well as Smartwater (that actress Jennifer Aniston endorses). He got the idea for Vitaminwater by drinking some water while he had a fruity vitamin C lozenge in his mouth. It sounds silly to be paying almost three dollars for something so simple that I could have done myself.
Also the amount of celebrity endorsements on food and drinks is a lot when you think about it.
Other celebrities who endorse food and drinks are Katy Perry for Popchips, Betty White and Joe Pesci for Snickers candy bar and almost every celebrity I've seen has been linked to Pepsi or Coke in one way or another.
It's a little bit much, isn't it? Seeing all of these faces tied to big brand names just to make a dollar. These celebrities do stand out though, when you think of a brand name, you usually connect that with a slogan or a face.
Luckily, there was no celebrity endorsement to get me to try Vitaminwater, I just wanted to try something different. Apparently, the rapper 50 Cent and the actress-turned TV talk show host Ellen DeGeneres both endorse Vitaminwater among other celebrities.
Now every time I read the blurb on the side of the bottle I'll imagine Ellen DeGeneres' voice in my head, is that weird? Wait, don't answer that. I can already picture the look on your face which answers my question.
Written by Jamie Petluk Friday, 02 November 2012 10:57
On Thursday the mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg said that the estimated death toll in New York was 38 and is expected to be larger. Canada even felt the impact of Hurricane Sandy when a Staples sign came loose in the wind, striking a woman in her 30’s and killing her.
Despite the losses of life I believe emergency responders did a great job of helping people in need. It’s impressive that out of eight million people living in New York, that such a small amount of lives were lost.
I think the reason the hurricane was handled so well is because of how it was communicated to the public. Every news station on television was warning its viewers about how severe Sandy was going to be, even calling it the “Perfect Storm” or “The storm of the century.”
Even after the storm hit the rescue crews were helping transfer 300 patients from the New York University Langone Medical Center after it lost power.
People were also keeping others around the globe up to date with hurricane Sandy through many forms of social media. Reddit had their Sandy section that allowed people to send updates and photos of the storm, Times Magazine was updating with photos from their photographers that were still in the city and many tweets on Twitter.
It’s sad that some people didn’t make it through the storm, but it could have easily been worse if people were not as prepared as they were. Even though there was an immense amount of property damage along the east coast, it can be repaired but the human lives will be gone forever.
Running away and mental health
Written by Kyle Johnson Friday, 02 November 2012 10:16
I like to think of the mental baggage everyone carries as a backpack.
As we put more and more stuff into this backpack, it gets heavier. The heavier it is, the tougher it is to move forward with your life. There are times in a person’s life when the backpack becomes so heavy, they hit a dead stop. The straps have cut into their shoulders, and the stuff inside the backpack is coming out. The only problem is, it’s coming out all at once and they don’t have a clue of how to deal with it. What do they pick up? What goes back in? What do they leave on the ground?
One response to this is running away.
Running away can be a common thought while growing up. A person believes they deserve better, or they don’t have to put up with the discipline. Not everyone thinks this while they are young, but there are some who do.
This can also happen during adulthood.
When the backpack becomes too heavy and the stuff inside is falling out, a person’s first response could be: I need to get out of here. They want nothing to do with anything they carried in the backpack, because they can’t handle it. Their life is falling apart all at once and they don’t know what to do. So this person will run away. They might move away and sever contact with those they held in their backpack. They might run away from themselves and suffer a mental breakdown. Lost, they might delve into drugs and alcohol. There are all types of different ways to run away from problems.
One method I find that helps is to examine the stuff you carry in your backpack. Which stuff is the heaviest? Should it be that heavy? Should it be in your backpack in the first place? This is a great way to organize your thoughts. It can help a person confront their issues and take out the really heavy stuff slowing them down, or at least reduce the weight.
People carry a lot of baggage; we all have a backpack full of stuff. If we can reduce the weight we carry, we can lead better, more enjoyable lives.
I'm tired please let me rest
Written by Ashley Hall Friday, 02 November 2012 10:12
Kids are wonderful, they have a beautiful energy about them that is fun and exciting.
Work place safety not exactly common sense
Monday, 29 October 2012 10:52
Common sense is not common. In Alberta, workplace injuries are on the decline while workplace fatalities have hit an unprecedented high. Five deaths in less than a week is cause for serious concern. With all the regulation, policy and government involvement on the worksite, it’s hard to imagine that anyone could possibly get hurt. But the truth is, no matter how many training courses, safety guards and hard hats are thrown at the employee, it is still up them to ensure their own safety.
Ear plugs and a set of gloves will not save a person from a two tonne generator that has just broken loose from a lifting swing. Nothing at this point will stop the force of it swinging towards them, except for the wall they are leaning against. This person has been through an intense three-week safety course and knows to keep himself out of pinch points but for some reason they have forgotten or disregarded what, in their trade, should be common sense.
Another fatality on the worksite causes an investigation. Government questions the workplace, companies question the legislation and the employees question both. “We need to realize that safety isn’t solely the persons or the company’s issue. We need to be working to develop a safety culture,” said Dan MacLennan, executive director of the Alberta Construction Safety Association.
It is everyone’s responsibility to ensure safety on a worksite. We need to talk about workplace safety as much as we need to talk about bullying. No longer are we talking about missing fingers or broken ankles. We are talking about ensuring the safety of our men and woman working in trenches and in towers, drive our economy and providing the rest of us with the services we take for granted every day. Safety starts with you and your life can be ended if you don’t start with safety.
Manual labour is enjoyable, when done right
Written by Kyle Johnson Friday, 26 October 2012 15:06
Working with your hands to build or repair something is a great feeling.
I recently changed the thermostat in my vehicle, and this was no easy task. I had to take out another part just to get to it, and when I did, I spent 20 minutes loosening a single bolt. This was one of the most annoying things I have fixed on my vehicle, but that same annoyance gave me a huge sense of satisfaction when the fix worked. Not only does my car now operate the way it was meant to (sort of), but I did it. I saved a massive amount of money by doing the labour myself, and that makes me feel great. I also love getting my hands dirty and using a wrench. It just feels good.
I can see the draw for aspiring mechanics in doing vehicle repairs, as the work is enjoyable. Why not get paid for what you like to do? The money can be good, and you get the chance to work on some very interesting vehicles. My father once worked on a bright orange DeLorean, although it had no flux capacitor. What’s a DeLorean without a flux capacitor?
The men in my family have worked in mines and construction. They are welders and mechanics. Working with my hands seems to be in my blood. I can’t deny the great feeling I get when I have a wrench in one hand, and a bolt in the other. The world feels like my playground, and I can do anything I want. Change a tire here, replace a filter there, build a bench in the backyard, or even rewire a lamp in the living room. I can fix or build anything I want to.
I just have to make sure I know what I’m doing first.
Holiday overload: Happy Thank-hallo-mas?
Friday, 26 October 2012 10:52
The conglomeration of holidays is just as confusing as this title alone.
With Thanksgiving all wrapped up, some grocery stores have already started bringing out the egg nog and Christmas decorations. Which is something that should come out in late November instead, considering it's not even Halloween yet.
The warm commercialized air that large companies breathe down your neck over hallmark holidays is stifling - especially when it's three festivities all so close together.
The combination of holidays can have people going through many ups and downs when parties and family functions are involved.
A big feast covers the dining room table with turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie and just as you sit down you hear your uncle talk about how he's convinced the Russian neighbours are stealing his lawn gnomes again.
Maybe you're racing around town at the last minute to find your child the perfect Halloween costume to fit over warmer clothes for trick-or-treating. If you're a young adult, you could be going to a Halloween party dressed up as Christina Aguilera, but after a few drinks you realize you've smudged your makeup all over your face and are now looking like the '80s version of Cindy Lauper.
Then your mom and sister go from being best friends during the holidays, to competing over who buys the best Christmas gifts for the family. Accidently, your grandma gets a $50 gift certificate to Hooters and your dad gets a Chanel No. 5 perfume set, not exactly what you'd call ideal personalized gifts.
Aside from butting heads with people, there are wonderful moments that can happen during the holidays. Getting to meet your best friend's new boyfriend at Thanksgiving, finding a cute Halloween costume that gets your crush to strike up a conversation with you or having a loved one come home for the holidays.
Some of these things show ways to sift through sugar-coated messages from advertisements during any holiday and bring the idea of closeness into a better light.
Taylor Swift sweeps the nations with new songs
Written by Jenna Cole Friday, 26 October 2012 10:19
If you have been feeling down, full of heartache and need some good old love-gone-wrong tunes, then your prayers have been answered.
Taylor Swift has released her new album “Red” on October 22. Her new masterpiece features 16 songs, including one featuring Ed Sheeran. I almost died of happiness when I heard it.
I remember the first time I heard of her. My dad brought her CD home and said, “I found a new country artist.” He proceeded to put it in our CD player (back then ipods weren’t that big yet) and Taylor’s first big song, Tim McGraw came on. My dad then grabbed my mother and began dancing around the house.
Since that moment I must confess I have became a Taylor Swift fan. Yes her lyrics are a little juvenile at times, and she seems to have a thing for break-up songs, but there is something about her music that is addictive.
Apparently I am not the only one who thinks so. Within the first 36 minutes after being released Red topped the all-genre Top Albums chart. It has sold 4.5 million song downloads in the U.S. alone.
Although her music life is thriving, her love life is not. The latest is she and her 18-year-old boyfriend Conor Kennedy recently called it quits. I am sure we will be hearing all about it in her next set of songs.
Uruguay lawmakers legalize abortion
Written by David Kirby Monday, 22 October 2012 20:38
Uruguay has made history after passing a bill that allows women to have access to safe, legal abortions, making it the third country in Latin American to do so. After reading through the fine print, however, activists say the law is no reason to celebrate.
Katey Zeh, from the Washington-based Center for Health and Gender Equality, says the law was passed by ‘not disrupting the patriarchal assumption that a woman is incapable of making moral decisions on her own’ and that the requirements ‘undermine her decision-making process about her reproductive life.’
Women seeking an abortion will be required to meet with a panel of professionals including a social worker, a gynecologist and a psychologist and will have to justify her decision. The actual text of the bill reads ‘(The woman) must describe how the pregnancy happened and any difficulties she faces in terms of finances, social and family situations, age or other issues that prevent her from wanting to continue the pregnancy.’ In other words, is your abortion really needed? The fact that women will have to discuss intimate, personal details to a panel of strangers is not the worst of it, though.
After discussing why she is requesting access to basic health services, the woman will then have to sit through a discussion with the panel, discussing ‘adoption and resources available if she decides to parent. This assumes that a woman has not carefully considered the alternatives prior to requesting an abortion.’ The bill also states that ‘The interdisciplinary panel must create an atmosphere of psychological and social support for the woman to enable her to overcome the causes that led her to want to abort the pregnancy and guarantee that she makes a conscious and responsible decision.’
The fact that the bill blatantly assumes a woman who requests an abortion has not done research or considered the effect it will have on her and needs to be lectured is an insult to women’s rights and for the most part, ineffective. A 2009 study conducted in the United States found that enforcing mandatory counselling did not lead to any significant reduction in abortions. The fact that an ‘atmosphere’ is made where women are pressured to consider anything but abortion is completely inappropriate and another example of the insult being made to women’s rights.
After waiting five days, following the panel, a woman is then allowed to access reproductive health services. Despite these significant barriers, this is a major step forward in Uruguay and Latin America. According to the Associated Press, thousands of women were ending up in hospitals suffering from complications from illegal abortions until the government allowed the use of the morning-after pill. Opponents are already planning to appeal the law, however hopefully this will stay legal and eventually be modified so women don’t have to jump through difficult and emotionally exhaustive loopholes to access basic health care services.
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