French workers use threats in compensation demand

Posted by s8KR2i on November 13, 2018 - 2:48 am

Friday, July 17, 2009Following similar threats by workers at New Fabris and Nortel, workers at JLG in Tonneins, France, threatened to blow up several platform cranes. The JLG factory announced in April 2009 that it will fire 53 of its 163 workers by the end of 2009, while the remaining 110 jobs will not be secure over the next 2 years.

JLG Tonneins was acquired in 2006 with its parent JLG Industries, a maker of aerial work platforms, by the U.S.-based Oshkosh Corporation. Despite being hugely profitable in the past, production has been much reduced since 2008 with the contraction of the construction industry and lower demand for its products. Despite excellent past results the new American management demanded sweeping cuts at the company.

In the view of locals, “the company’s actions are a disgrace given the expensive perks, such as official cars, for its corporate fat cats, compared to the sacrifice, silence, and dignity demanded by the company of those it has made redundant.”

The management offered severance pay of 3,000 (US $4,200), however the workers demanded a severance package commensurate with “the wealth that their labor has generated.” Worker’s delegates requested a “supra-legal” payment of € 30,000, on Thursday 16 of July the management responded with a counter offer of € 16,000. On Thursday night the worker’s actions secured the € 30,000 settlement initially demanded.

Wikinews interviews 0 A.D. game development team

Posted by s8KR2i on November 13, 2018 - 2:46 am

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

0 A.D. is a historical, open source, strategy game, published by Wildfire Games. It focuses on the period between 500BC and 500AD. The game will be released in two parts: the first covering the pre-AD period, and the second running to 500AD. With development well underway, Wikinews interviewed the development team.

Aviv Sharon, a 24-year-old Israeli student responsible for the project’s PR, compiled the below Q&A, which the full team approved prior to publication.

Wikinews interviews meteorological experts on Cyclone Phalin

Posted by s8KR2i on November 13, 2018 - 2:21 am

Monday, October 14, 2013

Half-a-million people have fled their homes in and around the Indian state of Orissa after Cyclone Phailin made landfall.

Wikinews interviewed specialists in meteorology about the devastation the cyclone has caused.

Senior UK politicians talk at Confederation of British Industry conference

Posted by s8KR2i on November 13, 2018 - 2:20 am

Monday, November 21, 2016

UK Prime Minister Theresa May and opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn both spoke at the annual Confederation of British Industry conference today, talking about Britain after its planned ‘Brexit’ from the European Union, and future plans for business.

May formally announced plans to cut corporation tax from 20%, without giving details, in order to discourage businesses from leaving the UK post-Brexit. Corbyn said in his speech he believes investment by the government on things such as infrastructure improvements is shared ground between Labour and businesses but “businesses will need to contribute” meaning “some increase in corporation tax” under his administration.

Theresa May also toned down plans to put ordinary workers on corporate boards, a campaign promise from running to become leader of the ruling Conservative Party. She said she is working to create a “model that works for everyone” after consulting firms and the general public, with possible plans including panels or advisory committees. The General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress responded by saying “Theresa May made a clear promise to have workers represented on company boards […] This is not the way to show that you want to govern for ordinary working people.” Jeremy Corbyn also criticised this announcement saying “we need to see genuine employee representation at board level, which the prime minister promised, but I see is already backing away from.”

Theresa May also announced she wishes to spend £2Bn annually in research and development, as well as plans to start a small business research initiative to look into helping innovators get ahead. Jeremy Corbyn however said he plans to spend 3% of the UK’s GDP on R&D, significantly more than specified by May.

Jeremy Corbyn’s plans for the UK’s economy focussed on investment. Speaking at the conference he said “First and foremost, a Labour government will prioritise investing in our economy.” As well as the investment in research, Corbyn also promised funds for areas including house building and infrastructure. This would be controlled by the proposed “National Investment Bank”. Corbyn said “Our National Investment Bank will deliver long term strategic investment in our under-powered infrastructure and provide the patient finance that our businesses need across the country.”

May told the conference she would not give “a running commentary on every twist and turn” of the Brexit negotiations. This comes after allegation in the press that she she has no plan to keep under wraps, a claim that has been backed up by an alleged leaked internal government memo that talks about a “lack of overall negotiation strategy” within government.

SBC teams with Scientific-Atlanta for cable TV rollout in 13 US states

Posted by s8KR2i on November 13, 2018 - 2:15 am

Saturday, April 2, 2005

Regional U.S. telephone giant SBC Communications is one step closer to offering cable television to the 18 million households in its 13 state coverage area. The company announced a $195 million contract with Scientific-Atlanta Thursday to provide a video operations center and regional hubs for the new service. Under the brand name, U-verse, the SBC’s television rollout is set to launch in 2006 after field trials begin later this year.

The company is seeking the so-called “triple play,” where a telecommunications company offers voice, data and video in one bundled package. Local telephone companies like SBC have been losing business to cable TV companies, which have added telephone and Internet services in recent years.

In a slew of recent deals, SBC is looking to stop that trend. Within the past six months it has signed alliances with various technology firms to build out a fiber network to the home strategy. For instance, SBC has a $1.7 billion deal with Alcatel to build out its fiber optic network and a 10-year, $400 million, pact with Microsoft to license its IPTV technology to allow multi-channel television to stream over its Internet backbone.

In most of the U.S. only cable TV companies like Comcast have been able to offer the “triple play” of voice, video and data services. But traditional phone companies like SBC and Verizon have been upgrading their copper wire telephone networks to fiber optic. SBC says it plans to spend billions of dollars to overhaul its telecommunications network, saying the aging and brittle copper wires which were originally laid in the early 1900s do not have enough bandwidth to allow television capability.

Gastric bypass surgery performed by remote control

Posted by s8KR2i on November 11, 2018 - 2:30 am

Sunday, August 21, 2005

A robotic system at Stanford Medical Center was used to perform a laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery successfully with a theoretically similar rate of complications to that seen in standard operations. However, as there were only 10 people in the experimental group (and another 10 in the control group), this is not a statistically significant sample.

If this surgical procedure is as successful in large-scale studies, it may lead the way for the use of robotic surgery in even more delicate procedures, such as heart surgery. Note that this is not a fully automated system, as a human doctor controls the operation via remote control. Laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery is a treatment for obesity.

There were concerns that doctors, in the future, might only be trained in the remote control procedure. Ronald G. Latimer, M.D., of Santa Barbara, CA, warned “The fact that surgeons may have to open the patient or might actually need to revert to standard laparoscopic techniques demands that this basic training be a requirement before a robot is purchased. Robots do malfunction, so a backup system is imperative. We should not be seduced to buy this instrument to train surgeons if they are not able to do the primary operations themselves.”

There are precedents for just such a problem occurring. A previous “new technology”, the electrocardiogram (ECG), has lead to a lack of basic education on the older technology, the stethoscope. As a result, many heart conditions now go undiagnosed, especially in children and others who rarely undergo an ECG procedure.

Canada’s Don Valley East (Ward 33) city council candidates speak

Posted by s8KR2i on November 10, 2018 - 2:16 am
This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Saturday, November 4, 2006

On November 13, Torontonians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward’s councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto’s ridings is Don Valley East (Ward 33). One candidates responded to Wikinews’ requests for an interview. This ward’s candidates include Zane Caplan, Shelley Carroll (incumbent), Jim Conlon, Sarah Tsang-Fahey, and Anderson Tung.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

IMF prepares to help Hungary and Ukraine

Posted by s8KR2i on November 10, 2018 - 2:15 am

Friday, October 17, 2008

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is preparing a series of loans to both Hungary and Ukraine as financial problems are hitting the two countries. Hungary has already received a €5 billion credit line from the European Central Bank (ECB). Ukraine is seeking a loan of up to US$14 billion.

The credit line to Hungary will be used to cover banks’ shortage of euros. Hungary has a severe debt problem with them posting an account deficit of €5.3 billion or 4.9% of GDP this year. As a result of this, Hungary is unable to find suitable credit to store up its supply of euros.

“We are in close dialogue with the Hungarian authorities and the EU to discuss further responses to the current challenges, including possible technical and financial support by the IMF”, said Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the IMF. “I have informed the authorities that the IMF stands ready to assist their efforts. We will provide technical assistance as needed and, in the context of a supportive policy setting, are ready to undertake [decisions] on possible financial assistance, responding rapidly.”

Ukraine’s Finance Minister Viktor Pynzenyk met with an IMF team on Thursday. In a statement, Pynzenyk said “the parties discussed a situation of influence the world financial crisis had on the economy of Ukraine.” It is not yet known how much the IMF is expected to lend to Ukraine but it is expected to be between $3 billion to $14 billion. It is also not known what type of conditions might be placed on the loan.

In addition to financial uncertainty, Ukraine is suffering from political turmoil with the current President, Viktor Yushchenko, calling a snap parliamentary election for December. The Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko, has made moves to stop the election. Ukraine’s yearly trade deficit has increased by almost $7 billion since last year.

The credit line by the European Central Bank is the first time publicly that it has extended help to countries other than the 15 that make up the Eurozone.

According to Reuters, Hungary might be able to start the process of joining the euro quicker then expected. Currently, Hungary is on track to join the euro in 2011 or 2012, but if sped up, it is possible it could join as early as 2010. This might protect Hungary from further financial problems.

Russia asks Iceland for details of bank rescue plan before giving loan

Posted by s8KR2i on November 10, 2018 - 2:07 am

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Russia has requested Iceland give them more details of the island nation’s plan to rescue the banking sector and thus the entire national economy before granting them a loan.

Two weeks ago, Iceland’s banking sector collapsed and was largely nationalised. Icelandic banks are in significantly more debt than the country can afford, and the nation may seek assistance from the International Monetary Fund. A decision on whether to involve the IMF is due within a week.

As for Russia, a senior Russian government source is reported by Reuters as having said “At the current moment, we do not yet have enough reasons to give them credit. We did not refuse. We are continuing the talks.” Forbes quoted him as having also said “‘We asked them to collect more information and present a rescue plan for the banking system.”

Meanwhile, there is some optimism in Iceland over the economy. It is hoped by authorities that the lower exchange rate for the króna means that more tourists will be attracted. Bars and restaurants are also doing well. The manager of one bar explained: “Actually, when people get depressed they drink more.”

Thai government reportedly planning Internet censorship

Posted by s8KR2i on November 9, 2018 - 3:04 am

Thursday, January 26, 2006

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, the Thai government’s Public Relations Department is considering blocking the website of Manager Online as a possible instigator of “social chaos”.

The report claims that a document was submitted to the Communications Authority of Thailand urging a block be issued against the site as the current calls for participation in anti-government rallies by outspoken government critic Sondhi Limthongkul may be a threat to social order.

Other reports claim that CAT Telecom cut off a live satellite broadcast by Sondi on the ASTV satellite network on Tuesday evening during a discussion related to a planned anti-government rally on February 4.