Tag: 上海品茶夜网

  • Legendary NOLA Musicians Slated To Play Inaugural Crawfish Festival During Jazz Fest

    first_imgThe first-ever NOLA Crawfish Festival will welcome some of New Orleans’ finest musicians, food, and craft beer at the NOLA Brewery and Tap Room April 25-27, right in the midst of Jazz Fest season. Featuring talent from some of the most prominent artists to emerge from the Crescent City including George Porter Jr., Jon Cleary, Nigel Hall, special guest Anders Osborne, and more, NOLA Crawfish Festival promises a true New Orleans experience from top to bottom.Presented by NOLA Crawfish King, Live For Live Music, and NOLA Brewing Company, the festival will bring together a trifecta of Southeast Louisiana perfection – the absolute best crawfish, live music, and beer the city has to offer. The full roster of artists includes George Porter, Jr., Jon Cleary, Nigel Hall, John “Papa” Gros, Billy Iuso & The Restless Natives, Papa Mali, Honey Island Swamp Band, Neville Jacobs, June Yamagishi, Raymond Weber, Tony Hall, Derwin “Big D” Perkins, Terrence Higgins, Brian Stoltz, Eric Vogel, Dave Malone, Johnny Sansone, Mike Zito & The Wheel, Colin Lake, Russ Broussard, and special guest Anders Osborne. Anticipate various superjams, exciting collaborations and surprise sit-ins, all in true New Orleans fashion. A portion of all ticket proceeds will go to The Brett Thomas Doussan Foundation, a local nonprofit whose mission is to raise mental health awareness through advocacy, education, and music.The festival will run from 3 PM-10 PM each day. Attendees can enjoy over 5,000 pounds of hot boiled crawfish prepared on-site by Chris “Shaggy” Davis and his NOLA Crawfish King staff, 20+ original varieties of ice-cold beer tapped straight from the source, and a specialty brew created just for the event. The three-day event will conclude with the Ultimate Crawfish Cook-Off, where twenty teams will compete for the best crawfish boil determined by a panel of NOLA celebrity judges.General admission includes one beer and a guaranteed minimum of two pounds of crawfish with all the fixings. Single day passes will be available, but a three-day pass is the best way to enjoy the full hometown experience. A limited amount of VIP passes will also be available, allowing full 360° access to a festival experience that you will never forget.More information and tickets are available at nolacrawfishfest.com. RSVP to attend here.ARTIST SCHEDULE4/25: Neville Jacobs (Ivan Neville, Cris Jacobs, Tony Hall, Brady Blade), Honey Island Swamp Band, Mike Zito & The Wheel, Colin Lake, Johnny Sansone4/26: John “Papa” Gros Band (Brian Stoltz, Eric Vogel, Russ Broussard + special guest June Yamagishi), Papa Mali & Friends, Billy Iuso & The Restless Natives, George Porter Trio w/ special guest June Yamagishi4/27: The MVP (Jon Cleary, Nigel Hall, Tony Hall, Raymond Weber, & Derwin “Big D” Perkins) + The 2016 NOLA Crawfish Cook-Off with NOLA Celebrity Judges + The Crawfish All-Stars (George Porter, Jr., Terrence Higgins, Billy Iuso, Dave Malone w/ special guest Anders Osborne)last_img read more

  • Partner Nation Special Forces Compete for ‘Fuerzas Comando Peru 2016’ Cup

    first_img“We use the opportunity of this convergence of Special Forces Soldiers from many partner nations to paint our faces, but not with war paint,” Maj. Gen. Del Castillo stated during his inaugural speech. “We do it using the paint of hope, peace, joy, friendship, camaraderie, and our brotherhood.” On the shores of the Pacific, at the Peruvian Marine Corps base in Ancon, Major General Moisés del Castillo, commander general of the Intelligence and Joint Special Operations Command of the Armed Forces of Peru, presided over the May 2nd opening of the 14th edition of the multinational exercise Fuerzas Comando 2016. “These competitive gatherings allow us to test the hard work of preparation [of Special Forces Soldiers], the work that gives strength to muscle, rhythm to thought, steadiness to pulse, a temple to character, heat to the heart, and energy to our body.” Fuerzas Comando 2016 brings together members of Military and police special forces from 20 countries in the Americas, including Argentina, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, El Salvador, the United States, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and Uruguay. Each team has seven Commandos, in some cases from joint forces, in addition to an impartial judge who will attend the competition. The winner of the previous edition, Colombia, is bringing a joint team of Special Forces members from both the Army and Air Force. Peru is hosting the event for the first time, through the Joint Chiefs of Staff of its Armed Forces, but the friendly competition has been held annually under the auspices of the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) since 2004. It is run by the Special Operations Command South (SOCSOUTH), together with the different partner nations who host each edition of the event. It is also an opportunity for participants to improve their skills in special operations training, increase their expertise, and deepen their interoperability and relationships with each other, especially to combat common threats in a unified manner. Meanwhile, the sniper teams competed in the field shoot, snaps and movers, range estimation, and stalk and shoot. Finally, in addition to the physical endurance test, the combined teams competed in tests of combined assault, a water event, a road march, and an obstacle course. Following the opening ceremony, the nearly 700 participating Commandos began the physical endurance test in combined teams. This first event of the competition included sit-ups for two minutes, parallel bars for one minute, fixed-bar pull-ups for one minute and four-mile run under the strong Peruvian sun. Peru is hosting the teams from each friendly nation for 10 days, as they compete for one of the most prized Military trophies on the continent. “Fuerzas Comando Peru 2016 is a unique opportunity for members of the Armed Forces of 20 fraternal countries to demonstrate the preparation, capacities, and professionalism of their elite members, taking them to the extreme in each of the tests to be performed,” said the Master of Ceremonies, a member of Peru’s Armed Forces. During the later days of competition participants competed in three categories: assault teams, sniper teams, and combined teams. The assault teams participated in critical tasks evaluation, close quarters combat, a rifle shoot, target discrimination, and a stress test. By Dialogo May 05, 2016 “The transnational nature of the 21st century security challenges requires stronger cross-border, regional, and multinational cooperation,” said Staff Sergeant Osvaldo Equite, Public Affairs Officer for SOCSOUTH and spokesman for the event. “Events like Fuerzas Comando strengthen Military cooperation and promote interoperability among competing countries in the Americas.” very goodarticle How is the competition scorecard going TRAINING FOR OUR ARMED FORCES IS VERY IMPORTANT I CONGRATULATE DIVISION GENERAL MOISÉS DEL CASTILLO FOR THE WORDS OF PRAISE.“These competitive gatherings allow us to put the hard work and training [of the Special Forces Soldiers] to the test, the kind of work that gives strength to muscle, rhythm to thought, steadiness to pulse, resoluteness to character, warmth to heart, and energy to our body.” KEEP IT UP ARMED FORCES GOD BLESS YOU ALWAYS Hope, camaraderie, and brotherhoodlast_img read more

  • Volunteerism can open doors

    first_imgThere is no need for Foster’s Fairplay to declare a Jamaica College (JC) interest, having done so repeatedly when it is deemed to be necessary. Having said that, it is a signal pleasure to congratulate the Old Hope Road-based school’s alumnus, Alan Beckford, on yet another outstanding achievement. The former Boys’ Champs half-miler and recent aspirant for the IAAF Cross Country Committee has broken fresh ground. He has been selected as a technical official for the Rio Olympics by the International Triathlon Union (ITU). According to the co-founder and chief organiser of the Hugo Chambers Memorial 5K Road Race & Fun Run an annual November event “each country nominates qualified officials and a selection process is done to select essential the best.” The achievement qualifies him as an official in the triathlon and “we can be assigned to any aspect of the sport, swimming, transition, bike, run etc” To get to that level, the always media-friendly Beckford had to endure the Level III ITU technical officials course, which is the highest certification. “Maybe about 12 or so persons are at this level in the Americas from Canada, USA, Mexico, Brazil, Honduras and then Jamaica,” he added. He took the time to advise any prospective official who seeks to attain A level of which he is the sole Jamaican. “Start to volunteer and rewards will come. I have been volunteering for nearly 40 years in sports. ” He ended his talk with this columnist on a solemn note, as he looked to Rio. “It is a great honour and privilege to be recognised at this level. No other event can compare to the Olympic Games.” Once again, a sporting personality from the black, gold and green has risen to levels where our athletes have taken the country’s brand in a most significant way. This, as musicians, led by the immortal Bob Marley, scientists and the academics have also blazed their own trail. This should only form a template for those in the wings to attempt to copy as they wait on the, at times, elusive ‘buss’. So often, we see our young people, withholding their best efforts to make a difference in their own lives and that of their family, because, in their own words, ‘nuh dollaz nah run’. It cannot always be about the money. A matter worthy of consideration lies with parents, who need to start the process during the early stages of their children’s lives. No one can argue successfully against the need to earn, to look after one’s upkeep and to keep the landlord at bay. However, there is an important need to get aligned to the volunteer spirit, as is embraced by Beckford. In his case, it was a family-encouraged discipline. They have been staples at sporting events for ages, with mommy Beckford an active participant in her early years. Volunteerism can open doors to opportunities to better oneself in ways unimaginable. It is contagious in that it has the ability to get friends and associates also involved, if only out of curiosity or as something extra. Alan Beckford did it, giving of his knowledge and passion gained from early participation in sports. As dance hall artist Nesbeth sings to the delight of many, he can now say “look at me now’. For Feedback: E-Mail [email protected]last_img read more

  • DONEGAL ENTREPRENEUR APPEARS ON TV3 SHOW AS HIS TOY COMPANY GOES GLOBAL!

    first_imgDonegal entrepreneur and Finn Harps fanatic Ian Harkin disclosed the details of his incredible success with his company LOTTIE on TV3 last night.Donegal entrepreneur Ian Harkin made his TV debut last night as the incredible success of his toy company LOTTIE continues to gain recognition globally!The Ballybofey based businessman appeared on TV3 programme The Seven O’ Clock Show in which he discussed in-depth the success the business has generated over the last few years.Harkin disclosed how he and his business partner Lucie Follett boldly decided to take on the famous worldwide doll brand BARBIE. In a fascinating interview Harkin revealed that after extensive market research they realised there was a gap in the industry for a specific type of doll like LOTTIE that resonated with both parents and children.The success of his product has been evidenced by the fact LOTTIE is now being exported to over THIRTY countries from all over the world.Harkin said, “We launched LOTTIE just over two years ago, we spoke with a lot of parents when we conducted our research and also spoke to child psychologists, play experts and child nutritionists, we also done focus groups with kids and parents.“What we found was that kids were missing out on their childhood and were trying to be adults from a very young age, we found that they were already developing body image issues. “We based LOTTIE on a nine year-old, LOTTIE doesn’t wear make-up, doesn’t wear jewellery and she doesn’t wear high heels.“With LOTTIE were trying to let kids do everything they do in their own age group, and well never do an adult themed doll with LOTTIE.Harkin also discussed how he’d secured a deal with the European Space Agency to produce a LOTTIE doll that travels into space and this enables kids to learn about the solar system.Harkin told presenters Lucy Kennedy and Martin King that the risk of selling his home to invest in the business is now paying off.“We’ve really taken off and we’re now selling in THIRTY countries all over the world, this time last year there was just me and my business partner Lucie, but we now we’re employing eight people in Donegal. “I was living in London at the time we started the business, and I got support from Enterprise Ireland to move the company back here.“I sold my home, put everything into the business and Lucie re-mortgaged her home, so there was a lot at risk but thankfully it has paid off.“Our social media and PR has really brought us into the homes of many families right around the world.DONEGAL ENTREPRENEUR APPEARS ON TV3 SHOW AS HIS TOY COMPANY GOES GLOBAL! was last modified: June 16th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:BusinessdollsFeaturesIan HarkinLottienewsToyTV3last_img read more

  • South Africa offers cheapest transport options: survey

    first_img21 August 2014South Africa has been rated as offering the cheapest average rate per 100 kilometres of bus, train and air travel out of 51 countries in online platform GoEuro’s Worldwide Transportation Price Index.The survey, released on Wednesday, compared the cheapest bus, train and flight connections between the two most populous cities in each of the 51 countries, taking into account factors such as distance, scheduling and taxes.South Africa came out as the cheapest country for transport overall, with a bus journey costing on average US$3.67 (R39) per 100 kilometres, train journeys costing $1.88/100km (R20/100km) and flights costing just $11.63/100km (R124/100km).The most expensive country for transport, according to the survey, is Switzerland, where bus journeys cost $18.67/100km, train journeys $38.28/100km, and flights $125.07/100km.The United States is 22nd least expensive, with an average bus journey costing $7.92/100km, train journeys $18.61/100km, and flights $10.36/100km.The survey found he cheapest countries for bus travel to be Egypt ($1.88/100km), Ukraine ($3.07/100km) and Thailand ($3.11/100km), and the most expensive to be the Netherlands ($28.58/100km), Austria ($23.45/100km) and Norway ($21.61/100km).The cheapest countries for air travel are India ($10.36/100km), Malaysia ($11.43/100km) and South Africa ($11.63/100km), while the most expensive are Finland ($138.90/100km), Switzerland ($125.07/100km) and Lithuania ($116.72/100km).See: GoEuro’s Transportation Price IndexSAinfo reporterlast_img read more

  • New Style Hair Extension Scrunchie Light Honey Blonde Up Do Down Do Spiky Twister Elastic – FIRST CLASS CUSTOMER SERVICE

    first_imgWay too slender and wispy to be worth it primarily if you have fantastic hair. Hair fibres way too delicate to give a. . As well skinny and wispy to be value it specially if you have good hair. Hair fibres much too smooth to give a volumising effect.Fab at 1st, but tangles and is unachievable to get back again to how it was initially.Its solid and when i place my hair up no just one would seem to discover its not my hair as it looks to mix in with my have hair.Here are the specifications for the New Style Hair Extension Scrunchie Light Honey Blonde Up Do Down Do Spiky Twister Elastic:Lovely Natural Looking UpDo Twister Spiky and Straight Hair ScrunchieColour shown is 24T613 LIGHTEST HONEY MIXED WITH PALE BABY BLEACH BLONDE.Synthetic Fibres – Japanese kanekalonNew with tags, very comfortable easy and secure fit. An instant hair boost!The quality of my pieces is such that you cannot tell the difference between them and real hair! Quite tricky to use productively.Have tailored it to my desires, as my hair is really thin in front, and have discovered it quite fantastic. (minimize it about 3 ins and gripped it .) for unique situations, it performs, for when i have to have a little color and thickness.Reviews from purchasers :FIRST CLASS CUSTOMER SERVICEToo thin and wispy to be worth it especially if you have fine hair. Hair fibres too soft to give a It blends in with my hair Very first class shopper provider. Vanessa grey merchandise are excellent and you get excellent shopper support. I had a query relating to my fantastic hair which tends to make it difficult for scrunchie form hair pieces to continue to be set. They typically just slide off. Vanessa suggested and sent this merchandise to me which is just excellent. It is so refreshing to get these superior purchaser support and to be genuine i was not anticipating it. Nicely carried out vanessa gray – you definitely do should have recognition for your provider to buyers.Will make an up do achievable even though expanding my individual hair.last_img read more

  • Pompeo Champions Trade Agenda

    first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest DES MOINES, Iowa (DTN) — Iowa farmers noted Secretary of State Mike Pompeo largely kept his cards close to his vest regarding trade talks with China, but they nonetheless appreciated Pompeo coming to the state on Monday to make the case about the importance of demanding structural market changes in China.The secretary of state didn’t share many specifics on trade talks with China, but reiterated the Trump Administration’s case why the trade talks were needed even if the resulting tariffs led to lower market prices and export sales for U.S. farmers in the short term. While the secretary largely avoided domestic politics in his talk, the trip to Iowa could be viewed as trying to shore up support with farmers, a favorite constituency of President Donald Trump.Roughly 200 people attended the event at the World Food Prize headquarters in downtown Des Moines. Pompeo also toured a Corteva facility earlier in the day and spoke with a local Future Farmers of America group.Pompeo criticized the state control asserted over business in China, saying it leads to corruption and poor overall oversight and control. He pointed to food outbreaks in China such as contaminated baby formula to show where government control failed Chinese consumers.“Competition and choice requires companies to play by the rules,” Pompeo said, pointing to journalists, non-government groups, investors and food-safety advocates as an “entire eco-system” that keeps an eye on the government and markets. “Only the free market makes life better in the long run.”INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY THEFTFocusing on intellectual property theft, Pompeo highlighted a case out of Iowa in which a Chinese national was caught trying to steal seeds out of a cornfield. It was later discovered the man had sent several packages of corn seed to China. In another agricultural case, Chinese nationals were caught by Customs and Border agents trying to leave the country with bags of biotech rice.Farmers asked about the major obstacles left to getting a trade deal with China, as well as when the U.S. might lift steel and aluminum tariffs on Mexico and Canada to further facilitate ratification of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. On China, Pompeo said he can’t get into specific details, but the issue of market access is overshadowed by the intellectual property theft and forced transfer of technology that China demands. Those technology issues “are real and not something the Chinese are going to give up easily,” Pompeo said.CURB RETALIATORY TARIFFSPompeo indicated U.S. negotiators are trying to embed enforcement mechanisms into trade deals, but at the same time curb the ability of China, Canada and Mexico to place retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.“This risk of retaliatory tariffs — you’ve seen it in pork and we’ve seen it in other places — is real,” Pompeo said. “The president is deeply aware of this, the trade teams are all aware.” He added, “We’re working to clean up all of these issues along the side of that. I hesitate to get too far ahead of myself, but I’m optimistic we’ll get resolution and pull back some of these retaliatory tariffs.”Pompeo said trade agreements need enforcement mechanisms that don’t require long battles in court, adding that this has been a repeated mistake in past administrations negotiating trade deals. Pompeo joked, “We’re trying to make original mistakes and not repeat the past ones,” he said. “We’re trying to make sure we don’t fall down the same trap that American trade negotiators have done so many times.”CONFIDENT OF USMCA PASSINGPompeo also told farmers he was confident there were enough votes in Congress to pass the USMCA. In the end, officials in Canada and Mexico will also see that ratifying the new trade deal is the best outcome, he said. Pompeo said it “remains to be seen” how the Trump Administration will unwind the Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum, but he reiterated confidence on the USMCA.“I am, as is the president, enormously sympathetic to what you all are going through, but I wouldn’t want to predict a day or a week or how this is going to fall out,” Pompeo said.Former Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, now ambassador to China, said he wanted to bring Pompeo to Iowa to talk about what is being done “on these very delicate and important issues.” Besides the trade talks, Branstad highlighted the nuclear talks with North Korea and talks between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping to restrict the chemicals used to make the opioid fentanyl.“Obviously trade is a huge issue Iowans are concerned about, and yet frankly it is an issue that should have been addressed a long time ago,” Branstad said, adding, “We can’t let this continue and if we get an agreement we’ve got to find a way for it to be enforceable.”Branstad told reporters he did not know if Chinese officials would take up Trump’s call for China to eliminate tariffs on agricultural products.STEEL AND ALUMINUM TARIFFSMark Recker, chairman of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, told Pompeo farmers invest in checkoff dollars to invest in promoting international markets. Going from that, Recker asked the secretary about the steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada and Mexico, and how those could be removed to get the USMCA finalized.“I think he still held his cards close to his vest,” Recker said. “I think they want to keep those (steel and aluminum tariffs) on for whatever reason to, I guess, keep the carrot out there for Mexico and Canada to get the agreement done.”Canadian and Mexican officials have noted that they do not want to ratify the USMCA until the tariffs are lifted, Recker noted. “Speaking as a farmer, we know we have to get those removed to get that agreement done.”FARMERS’ VIEWS ON TRUMP ADMINISTRATIONRecker had just returned from the Commodity Classic event in Orlando, Florida. When asked about the sense of farmers’ views on the Trump Administration and trade, Recker said, “I think the general sense, I think they are OK yet. They have made the commitment to this administration and Trump, knowing before the election this was an avenue he could take and the financial consequences coming along. But I still think farmers are going to look and ask, ‘Who’s our alternative?’ Right? I think they are still going to stay committed to this administration in general.”Ben Riensche, a farmer from Jesup, Iowa, had a similar take as Recker regarding how much Pompeo could say about the talks with China. “Our administration has clear goals on what they want to get to and they aren’t going to show all of their cards to get there,” Riensche said.Riensche added Pompeo wanted to assure farmers the administration continues to negotiate aggressively. Riensche said he continues to have patience with the talks.“Farmers by nature are just used to poor crops, hail, bad crops and markets,” he said. “One little rough patch negotiating doesn’t really scare us off. Give me a little more time and that might change, but this hasn’t tested the farmers’ resilience yet.”Riensche also had asked Pompeo about the status of Indiana farmer Kip Tom’s nomination to be agricultural ambassador to the United Nations. Tom was nominated last July, but has yet to get a confirmation vote in the Senate — despite a unanimous committee vote last September advancing his nomination. Riensche’s question was one of the few that got Pompeo off script as the secretary complained about roughly 40 nominations being held up in his department right now.“I should have you all sign letters on his (Tom’s) behalf,” Pompeo said, adding he was “enormously frustrated” with the Senate process. “I couldn’t tell you (about a confirmation). I don’t know what those timelines look like.”Chris Clayton can be reached at [email protected] him on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN(ES/)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more

  • Hacker Poll: Where Do You Work?

    first_imgWhy You Love Online Quizzes 7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac… Last week’s Hacker Poll revealed that home is the most popular place among you for coding. That made us curious: where do you work?Since we assume most of you also have side projects, and that many of you have a non-coding job as your primary source of work, we’d like to know specifically what your primary coding gig is. So if you work full time as a Web developer for your local government, but hack on several projects on the side, mark “I work for a non-profit or government organization.” But if you’re a lawyer with a secret coding habit, mark “I just code for fun.”Photo by Shereen M klint finley Tags:#hack#Polls center_img How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoid Related Posts last_img read more

  • Illinois Enacts Withholding Tax Credit for Small Employers

    first_imgIllinois enacted a personal income withholding tax for small employers.Who Qualifies for the Credit?Employers with 50 or fewer Illinois full-time employees who make minimum wage can qualify for the credit. An employer must aggregate its employees to determine the threshold if:– the employer operates more than one franchise; or– the employer is a unitary business group member.The credit does not include employees who have worked fewer than 90 consecutive days before the reporting period. But, credits can accrue during that 90-day period for future reporting periods.An employer is not eligible for credits unless:– the average wage paid each employee for all employees making less than $55,000 during the reporting period exceeds;– the average wage paid each employee for all employees making less than $55,000 during the same reporting period in the prior calendar year.How Much Is the Credit?The base credit is the difference between wages paid in Illinois during the reporting period to:– employees who made minimum wage; and– employees who made less than minimum wage.The credit cannot exceed the employer’s tax liability for the reporting period.The amount of the credit equals:– 25% of the wages paid for 2020 quarterly reporting periods;– 21% of the wages paid for 2021 quarterly reporting periods;– 17% of the wages paid for 2022 quarterly reporting periods;– 13% of the wages paid for 2023 quarterly reporting periods;– 9% of the wages paid for 2024 quarterly reporting periods; and– 5% of the wages paid for 2025 quarterly reporting periods.Employers can continue to claim the credit for tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2026 and:– ending on or before December 31, 2026 for employers with more than 5 employees; or– ending on or before December 31, 2027 for employers with no more than 5 employees.P.A. 101-1 (S.B. 1), Laws 2019, effective February 19, 2019Login to read more on CCHAnswerConnect.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img read more

  • Small step, giant leap

    first_imgThree cheers. Hip hip Hooray!!!! Finally Indians have come to their senses; we as a nation have matured and are keen to put behind the bitterness of the past and march into the future with confidence.Really? On the surface, it would appear so considering the muted response to the Ayodhya verdict. Barring the likes of Maulana Mulayam, the political class has reacted with remarkable restraint.Even the rabble-rousers in the Sangh Parivar seem to have discovered a stroke of common sense. Instead of celebrating the victory of faith, constituents of the Parivar showed grace and in refraining from declaring the verdict a victory for Hindutva.But has the Parivar really shifted stance? Or is it a tactical retreat in preparation for a strategic move? In the coming weeks, all frontal organisations of the Parivar will hold small closed door meetings in various parts of the country.They will raise a quiet toast to celebrate the fact that Lord Ram has finally got a certificate attesting his place of birth, from the judiciary no less. They will then approach other cultural, social and religious leaders from other communities to prevail upon Muslims to see reason in the verdict. Sangh leaders have advised the BJP to desist from turning the verdict into a subject of political discourse.The idea is to retrieve RSS’s image of being a disciplined organisation, which seemed lost forever. During the late 80s and early 90s, the Ram Mandir movement was massively endorsed by both the rural and urban middle and elitist class. Despite the shameful destruction of the Babri Masjid on December 6, 1992, the BJP won 161 seats in the Lok Sabha elections four years later and India got its first swayamsewak prime minister in Atal Bihari Vajpayee.advertisementBut 2010 is not 1996 and those who rooted for the BJP then are its most trenchant critics now. Since being voted out of power in 2004, the BJP has been on a rapid downhill slide. The verdict affords the party the chance to claw its way back but nobody is in a hurry to hop on to the nearest parked rath and rabblerouse his way across the country. At least not now.It is BJP President Nitin Gadkari’s firm belief that the issue must be revived but in a manner that is in sync with the Hindu psyche which wants Ram lalla but unaccompanied by death and destruction. Gadkari’s move is strategic. He and his team would mount indirect pressure for the handing over the site to the Hindus but has sent feelers to government emissaries that the party would support any government move which paves for the construction of a Mandir and a Masjid nearby.Nitin Gadkari His expectation is that the government would float the idea of a trust on the pattern of Somnath Temple. PV Narsimha Rao, who fiddled while the Masjid was razed had announced a Rs 100 crore grant for rebuilding the Mosque but didn’t find any takers from the Muslim community.Gadkari feels it’s a win-win situation for his party. His assessment is that even if the Congress takes initiatives to settle the issue, it will be his party that reaps the political dividends.Already, Muslim MPs of Congress cutting across age, gender and region have backed the Court verdict. And Digvijay Singh, the self appointed keeper of minority faith in the Congress has said the Ayodhya verdict should form the basis of a negotiated settlement. All this serves Gadkari well. That’s why he has extended his new “all-in-good time” policy to Bihar where elections begin later this month.When Nitish Kumar said neither Narendra Modi nor Varun Gandhi were welcome to campaign in Bihar, Gadkari shot back that it was the BJP’s prerogative to decide its campaigners.The same Gadkari has had a change of heart and asked the two to stay at home, though to ensure that Modi is not rufled, he may ask other BJP chief ministers to stay away from Bihar.The campaign will thus be spearheaded by central leaders, many of whom are not known for their ideological commitment to the cause and are merely part of the party’s Urban Social Alliance (USA) whose chattering sessions are mostly about corporate battles and the politics of sport.By keeping Modi and Varun out, Gadkari wants to give voters a chance to choose between Laloo and Nitish and not have them get caught in a Mandir- Masjid spat. The mantra, for now is Live and Let Live. We will wait for the results from Bihar to see if they sing a different tune in future.advertisement—————————Save elections from the evil of envelope journalism”News”, Lord Northcliffe once said “is what something somebody somewhere wants to suppress. All the rest is advertisement”. The good Lord had obviously not heard of the phenomenon of “paid news” which rocked the Indian media during the last Lok Sabha elections when it became known that many media organisations, including some of the largest publications and TV channels, had disguised paid advertisements as news and passed them off as objective reports to unsuspecting readers and TV viewers.If the EC has its way, a repeat is unlikely during the keenly watched elections to the Bihar assembly later this month. For the fist time, the EC will be monitoring ” paid news” in the print and electronic media and has already sent to the Bihar chief electoral officer the revised formats in which candidates are expected to file daily reports of their expenditure including money spent on advertising and other forms of marketing.The “paid news” issue cropped up last year when it became clear that many candidates resorted to paying off journalists/ newspapers under the table to circumvent an Election Commission rule that puts a cap on a candidate’s expenditure.A media watcher had authoritatively stated then that newspapers had different rate cards for varying types of coverage – interviews, rallies and a higher tariff to trash opponents.The most blatant of them was the Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan. His reported spend on advertsing was a paltry Rs 5000, while stories that hailed him as God’s gift to Maharashtra appeared for days together in newspapers that are otherwise ideologically diametrically opposite.If these had been advertisements and Chavan had to pay for them, it would have cost him a fortune.The EC has taken a close look at the phenomenon of “paid news” and decreed that the cost of such news is included in the expenditure of the candidates. The Election Commission has also taken up the matter with all political parties and is currently collating precise data to ensure that the election process is not undermined by the menace of envelope journalism.last_img read more