First United Methodist Church Movie Night Presents “Mary and Martha”

first_img Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy 7 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it First United Methodist Church continues its Movie Nights series with “Mary and Martha,” on January 25. FUMC will begin with an evening of fellowship with a light supper of pizza, salad, and cold beverages at 5:30 p.m.For those of you who cannot make supper, the church usually begins the movie at 6:15ish. Hope to see you there, and bring a friend!First United Methodist Church of Pasadena, 500 East Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, (626) 796-0157 or visit Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday Community News Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Top of the News HerbeautyAmazing Sparks Of On-Screen Chemistry From The 90-sHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyIs It Bad To Give Your Boyfriend An Ultimatum?HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyInstall These Measures To Keep Your Household Safe From Covid19HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty5 Things To Avoid If You Want To Have Whiter TeethHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyWant To Seriously Cut On Sugar? You Need To Know A Few TricksHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyPriyanka Chopra’s 10 Year Challenge Pic Will Surprise YouHerbeautyHerbeauty Faith & Religion Events First United Methodist Church Movie Night Presents “Mary and Martha” Article and Photo courtesy of FIRST UNITED METHODIST CHURCH Published on Friday, January 16, 2015 | 4:50 pmcenter_img Community News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS First Heatwave Expected Next Week More Cool Stuff Make a comment Subscribe Business News Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

Caltech Collaboration Leads to Incredible Breakthrough: Intuitive Control of Robotic Arm Using Thought

first_imgcenter column 1 Caltech Collaboration Leads to Incredible Breakthrough: Intuitive Control of Robotic Arm Using Thought The next generation of brain-controlled robotics and machines: More natural, effortless, intuitive movements achieved By DEBORAH WILLIAMS-HEDGES and ALISON TRINIDAD Published on Thursday, May 21, 2015 | 12:39 pm Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena Make a comment Community News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday First Heatwave Expected Next Week Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Paralyzed from the neck down after suffering a gunshot wound when he was 21, Erik G. Sorto now can move a robotic arm just by thinking about it and using his imagination.Through a clinical collaboration between Caltech, Keck Medicine of USC and Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, the now 34-year-old Sorto is the first person in the world to have a neural prosthetic device implanted in a region of the brain where intentions are made, giving him the ability to perform a fluid hand-shaking gesture, drink a beverage, and even play “rock, paper, scissors,” using a robotic arm. The findings are being published in the May 22 issue of Science.Neural prosthetic devices implanted in the brain’s movement center, the motor cortex, can allow patients with paralysis to control the movement of a robotic limb. However, current neuroprosthetics produce motion that is delayed and jerky—not the smooth and seemingly automatic gestures associated with natural movement. Now, by implanting neuroprosthetics in a part of the brain that controls not the movement directly but rather our intent to move, Caltech researchers have developed a way to produce more natural and fluid motions.Designed to test the safety and effectiveness of this new approach, the clinical trial was led by principal investigator Richard Andersen, the James G. Boswell Professor of Neuroscience at Caltech, neurosurgeon Charles Y. Liu, professor of neurological surgery, neurology, and biomedical engineering at USC, and neurologist Mindy Aisen, chief medical officer at Rancho Los Amigos.Andersen and his colleagues wanted to improve the versatility of movement that a neuroprosthetic can offer to patients by recording signals from a different brain region other than the motor cortex, i.e., the posterior parietal cortex (PPC), a high-level cognitive area. In earlier animal studies, the Andersen lab found that it is here, in the PPC, that the initial intent to make a movement is formed. These intentions are then transmitted to the motor cortex, through the spinal cord, and on to the arms and legs where the movement is executed.“The PPC is earlier in the pathway, so signals there are more related to movement planning—what you actually intend to do—rather than the details of the movement execution,” Andersen says. “When you move your arm, you really don’t think about which muscles to activate and the details of the movement—such as lift the arm, extend the arm, grasp the cup, close the hand around the cup, and so on. Instead, you think about the goal of the movement, for example, ‘I want to pick up that cup of water.’ So in this trial, we were successfully able to decode these actual intents, by asking the subject to simply imagine the movement as a whole, rather than breaking it down into a myriad of components. We expected that the signals from the PPC would be easier for patients to use, ultimately making the movement process more fluid.”The device was surgically implanted in Sorto’s brain at Keck Hospital of USC in April 2013, and he since has been training with Caltech researchers and staff at Rancho Los Amigos to control a computer cursor and a robotic arm with his mind. The researchers saw just what they were hoping for:intuitive movement of the robotic arm.Sorto, a single father of two who has been paralyzed for over 10 years, was thrilled with the quick results: “I was surprised at how easy it was [to control the robotic arm],” he says. “I remember just having this out-of-body experience, and I wanted to just run around and high-five everybody.”The SurgeryThe surgical team at Keck Medicine of USC performed the unprecedented neuroprosthetic implant in a five-hour surgery on April 17, 2013. Liu and his team implanted a pair of small electrode arrays in two parts of the posterior parietal cortex, one that controls reach and another that controls grasp. Each 4-by-4 millimeter array contains 96 active electrodes that, in turn, each record the activity of single neurons in the PPC. The arrays are connected by a cable to a system of computers that process the signals, to decode the brain’s intent and control output devices, such as a computer cursor and a robotic arm.“These arrays are very small so their placement has to be exceptionally precise, and it took a tremendous amount of planning, working with the Caltech team to make sure we got it right,” says Liu, who also is director of the USC Neurorestoration Center and associate chief medical officer at Rancho Los Amigos. “Because it was the first time anyone had implanted this part of the human brain, everything about the surgery was different: the location, the positioning and how you manage the hardware. Keep in mind that what we’re able to do—the ability to record the brain’s signals and decode them to eventually move the robotic arm—is critically dependent on the functionality of these arrays, which is determined largely at the time of surgery.”The USC Neurorestoration Center’s primary mission is to leverage partnerships to create unique opportunities to translate scientific discoveries into effective therapies.“We are at a point in human research where we are making huge strides in overcoming a lot of neurologic disease,” says neurologist Christianne Heck, associate professor of neurology at USC and co-director of the USC Neurorestoration Center. “These very important early clinical trials could provide hope for patients with all sorts of neurologic problems that involve paralysis such as stroke, brain injury, ALS and even multiple sclerosis.”The RehabilitationSixteen days after his implant surgery, Sorto began his training sessions at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, where a computer was attached directly to the ports extending from his skull, to communicate with his brain. The rehabilitation team of occupational therapists who specialize in helping patients adapt to loss of function in their upper limbs and “redesign” the way patients do tasks with the function they have left, worked with Sorto and the Caltech team daily to help Sorto visualize what it would be like to move his arm again.“It was a big surprise that the patient was able to control the limb on day one­­­—the very first day he tried,” Andersen says. “This attests to how intuitive the control is when using PPC activity.”Although he was able to immediately move the robot arm with his thoughts, after weeks of imagining, Sorto refined his control of the arm. Now, Sorto is able to execute advanced tasks with his mind, such as controlling a computer cursor; drinking a beverage; making a hand-shaking gesture; and performing various tasks with the robotic arm.Aisen, the chief medical officer at Rancho Los Amigos who led the study’s rehabilitation team, says that advancements in prosthetics like these hold promise for the future of patient rehabilitation.“We at Rancho are dedicated to advancing rehabilitation and to restoration of neurologic function through new technologies, which can be assistive or can promote recovery by capitalizing on the innate plasticity of the human nervous system,” says Aisen, also a clinical professor of neurology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. “This research is relevant to the role of robotics and brain-machine interfaces as assistive devices, but also speaks to the ability of the brain to learn to function in new ways. We have created a unique environment that can seamlessly bring together rehabilitation, medicine, and science as exemplified in this study.”Sorto has signed on to continue working on the project for a third year. He says the study has inspired him to continue his education and pursue a master’s degree in social work.“This study has been very meaningful to me,” says Sorto. “As much as the project needed me, I needed the project. It gives me great pleasure to be part of the solution for improving paralyzed patients’ lives. I joke around with the guys that I want to be able to drink my own beer—to be able to take a drink at my own pace, when I want to take a sip out of my beer and to not have to ask somebody to give it to me. I really miss that independence. I think that if it were safe enough, I would really enjoy grooming myself—shaving, brushing my own teeth. That would be fantastic.”“The better understanding of the PPC will help the researchers improve the neuroprosthetic devices of the future,” Andersen says. “What we have here is a unique window into the workings of a complex high-level brain area, as we work collaboratively with our subjects to perfect their skill in controlling external devices.”The results of the trial were published in a paper titled “Decoding Motor Imagery from the Posterior Parietal Cortex of a Tetraplegic Human.” The implanted device and signal processors used in the Caltech-led clinical trial were the NeuroPort Array and NeuroPort Bio-potential Signal Processors developed by Blackrock Microsystems in Salt Lake City, Utah. The robotic arm used in the trial was the Modular Prosthetic Limb, developed at the Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins. Sorto was recruited to the trial by collaborators at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center and at Keck Medicine of USC. This trial was funded by the National Institutes of Health (grants EY013337, EY015545, P50MH942581A), the Boswell Foundation, the Department of Defense (contract N66001-10-4056), and the USC Neurorestoration Center.Caltech Andersen lab members include Tyson Aflalo, Spencer Kellis, Christian Klaes, Brian Lee, Ying Shi, and Kelsie Pejsa.Keck Medicine of USC team members include Brian Lee, Christianne Heck, Sandra Oviedo, Paul Kim, and Meng Law.Rancho Los Amigos rehabilitation team members include Kathleen Shanfield, Stephanie Hayes-Jackson, and Barbara Phillips.Excellent Videos, Animations, Images Available at more information, contact Deborah Williams-Hedges,  [email protected], (626) 395-3227 or (626) 840-1565 or Alison Trinidad, [email protected], (323) 442-3941 or (213) 700-0322. Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimescenter_img Community News More Cool Stuff Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Subscribe 7 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Top of the News EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS HerbeautyKim To File For Divorce From Kanye West After 6 Years Of MarriageHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty6 Strong Female TV Characters Who Deserve To Have A SpinoffHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyStop Eating Read Meat (Before It’s Too Late)HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThe Most Heartwarming Moments Between Father And DaughterHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyCostume That Makes Actresses Beneath Practically UnrecognizableHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyNerdy Movie Kids Who Look Unrecognizable TodayHerbeautyHerbeauty Business Newslast_img read more

Chinese FA moves to plug transfer loophole after Bakambu affair

first_imgThe CFA bulletin issued late Monday appeared to be a response to French-born Congolese striker Cedric Bakambu’s murky move from Spain’s Villarreal to Beijing Guoan, after reports suggested it was structured to dodge the transfer tax.The CFA last May slapped a 100 percent tax on incoming transfers worth over 45 million yuan ($7 million) as concern mounted over spiralling fees splashed out to woo foreign talent to Chinese teams, most of which are already believed to operate at a loss.The unprecedented move has had a chilling effect on China’s once-overheated transfer market.But the Bakambu affair has emerged as a litmus test of the curbs, as reports in Spain and France said 40 million Euros had been paid to free the player from his Spanish contract.The move would reportedly bring Bakambu to Beijing on a free transfer and sparked speculation that the FA would work to seal any cracks in the system exposed by the deal.The new announcement said the tightened rules were issued after “considering the realities that have emerged in the current process of registering player transfers,” without elaborating.It said clubs that evade the levy on transfers of up to 45 million yuan would have one point deducted from their tally in the league table, on up to 15 points for transfers surpassing 360 million yuan ($57 million) in value.It was not immediately clear where that would leave Bakambu, whose fate has been shrouded in mystery.Bakambu and Beijing Guoan have largely kept quiet, although the club — coached by the German Roger Schmidt — previously told AFP that Bakambu left Villarreal “for personal reasons” and have pleaded ignorance about any deal.BBC Sport has previously quoted a figure close to Bakambu as saying that Guoan provided the funds to buy him from Villarreal.Compounding the confusion, Guoan released photos last month of Bakambu training with them in Portugal, but declined to confirm whether he had indeed joined the club.The CFA underlined its commitment to the 100 percent tax rule after the winter transfer window opened in China on January 1, saying it would not stand for any “loophole-exploiting behaviour”.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Beijing Guoan released photos last month of Cedric Bakambu training with them in Portugal, but declined to confirm whether he had indeed joined the club © BEIJING GUOAN/AFP/File / HANDOUTSHANGHAI, China, Feb 13 – Chinese Super League teams who evade the country’s 100 percent levy on foreign player transfers face crippling point deductions under new measures aimed at plugging loopholes in the restrictions.The Chinese Football Association (CFA) said clubs could be docked up to 15 points in the league table depending on the value of a transfer and would be prevented from registering such players until all details of transfer contracts and proofs of payment are submitted to the league.last_img read more

Two Donegal students awarded Silver Gaisce President’s Award

first_imgTwo Donegal students were awarded Gaisce’s Silver Award in Dublin on Thursday.The President’s Silver Award Ceremony was held in the O’Reilly Theatre Dublin 1 on Thursday the 7th of November where 148 people from throughout Ireland were awarded.CEO of Gaisce, Yvonne McKenna, presented Luke McCarthy and Ailbhe McGowan from St. Catherine’s Vocational School Killybegs with their awards. Speakers on the night included UN Youth Delegate Jack O’Connor, who is also a Gaisce Bronze Awardee, and Olivia Porter, a Wexford native who received her Gold Award in December last year from President Michael D. Higgins. The event was MC’d by Spin 103.8 DJs Graham O’Toole and Nathan O’Reilly.Silver Awardees recognised on the night have successfully completed at least 26 weeks across three different challenge areas and undertaken a 3-day adventure journey. The adventure journey incorporates either a 50km walk or or a 190km cycle.Speaking about the achievements of the awardees, Yvonne McKenna said, “I heartily congratulate this evening’s Awardees on their achievements. It’s fantastic to be honouring so many young people tonight for their dedication to personal development, and I think it’s a testament to the tenacity of young people today that we have so many Awardees here tonight.“I hope they have made lasting memories and gained invaluable self-knowledge through their Gaisce Journey. Completing a Silver Award has required a significant amount of dedication and effort from each one of them”. She continued, “I would also like to congratulate their wonderful President Award Leaders, who have guided them along their path to silver. Our President’s Award Leaders truly are the lifeblood of the Gaisce programme, without whom there would be no Gaisce, but also their families and communities, whom I’m sure will be incredibly proud of them”.Speaking about the ceremony, Gaisce Gold Awardee and speaker on the night, Olivia Porter said, “I’d like to congratulate all of the Silver Awardees on their amazing success. I received my Gaisce Gold Award last December and I can’t convey the level of achievement I felt during the ceremony. I know that many of the Awardees here tonight will relate to that experience. Doing Gaisce really pushed me out of my comfort zone and shaped me to be more self-aware and open to new things. I think undertaking Gold made me realise how much I enjoy improving myself and that has really motivated me in other areas of my life. I hope the Silver Awardees tonight take the next step on their Gaisce journey and feel the benefits I felt from undertaking Gold”.Gaisce – The President’s Award is a personal development programme for young people which enhances confidence and wellbeing through participation in personal, physical and community challenges.Since its inception in 1985 over 178,000 young Irish people have completed a Gaisce Award, including former Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh and Irish rugby international Robbie Henshaw.Two Donegal students awarded Silver Gaisce President’s Award was last modified: November 8th, 2019 by Katie GillenShare 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)last_img read more

22 monuments for 22 years of freedom

first_imgMonuments to peace and freedom are found across South Africa – not surprising, given its long history of struggle against oppression. As we look back on 2016 – the 22nd year of South Africa’s freedom – we showcase 22 monuments that pay homage to the heroes who made this country great.(Image: Flickr)Brand South Africa reporter#01 Robben Island, Cape Town#02 Robert Sobukwe Memorial, Graaff-Reinet#03 Archbishop Desmond Tutu statue, East London#04 Heroes Park, East London#05 Memorial to the Six Million, Johannesburg#06 Mandela House, Soweto#07 Bhisho Massacre Memorial, Bhisho#08 Langa Memorial, Uitenhage#09 Diggers Fountain, Kimberley#10 Freedom Charter Monument, Kliptown#11 Steve Biko statue, East London#12 Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum, Johannesburg#13 Nkosi Albert Luthuli Statue, KwaDukuza#14 Holocaust Centre, Cape Town#15 Solomon Mahlangu statue, Mamelodi#16 Slavery Emancipation Monument, Elim#17 Constitution Hill, Johannesburg#18 The Workers’ Library and Museum, Johannesburg#19 Mahatma Gandhi statue, Pietermaritzburg#20 The Gallows, Pretoria Central Prison#21 The Unknown Miner, Johannesburg#22 The Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg#1 Robben Island Museum, Cape Town Robben Island is best known for its prison which held several political activists including Nelson Mandela, Robert Sobukwe and South Africa’s current president Jacob Zuma (Image: Brand South Africa)Robben Island has a varied history. From the 1400s to 1900s, travellers, sailors and settlers used it as a base to replenish food and supplies; it was also used as a post office, a quarantine station, a hospital, and prison.But the island is best known as the site where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years. He was in prison for a total of 27 years, but was transferred from The Island, as the prison was known, to Pollsmoor and then Victor Verster prisons in Cape Town and Stellenbosch, respectively. Robben Island was declared a National Monument in 1996 and a National Museum in 1997.“A common thread woven into the many uses of The Island has been the exploitation of its natural resources, human rights abuses that prisoners and others ‘banished’ to the Island were subjected to, and segregation on the basis of race, gender, class and status,” reads the Robben Island website. “It is from this 500-year history of hardship and struggle that the Island has emerged as the ultimate symbol of ‘the triumph of the human spirit over adversity, suffering and injustice.”#2 Robert Sobukwe Memorial, Graaff-Reinet Pan Africanist Congress founder and leader Robert Sobukwe’s last day of freedom was on 21 March 1960. He spent the remaining 18 years of his life either in prison or in exile, always monitored by the apartheid government. He was buried in his hometown of Graaff Reinet in 1978. (Image: YouTube)In August 2014, anti-apartheid activist Robert Sobukwe’s gravesite in Graaff-Reinet was declared a national heritage site. After years of being vandalised, it was cleaned up and turned into a monument to pay respect to one of South Africa’s greatest struggle icons.Born in Little Karoo in 1924, Sobukwe was, according to South African History Online, a “strong Africanist, believing that the future of South Africa should be in the hands of black South Africans”.During his time as a member of the ANC, his Africanist views contradicted that of the party. As a result, he left the ANC to form the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) in 1959, becoming its first president.On 21 March 1960, Sobukwe and a group of PAC supporters marched to Orlando Police Station – as part of an anti-pass campaign. Sobukwe was charged for being present in a region that he was not allowed to be in according to the Pass Law, and gave himself in for arrest.He was sentenced to three years in prison for incitement. At the end of his term in 1963, parliament passed the General Law Amendment Act which included the “Sobukwe Clause”. This enabled the Minister of Justice to prolong the detention of any political prisoner indefinitely. Sobukwe was the only person imprisoned under this clause.He was moved to Robben Island where he spent six more years before being exiled to Galeshewe in Kimberley. Sobukwe died of lung cancer in February 1978.#3 Archbishop Desmond Tutu statue, East London The statue of Archbishop Desmond Tutu in East London pays tribute to him as a healer. (Image: Shamin Chibba)Unlike most of the monuments on the list, the Archbishop Desmond Tutu statue outside East London City Hall does not pay tribute to the man as a struggle hero, but rather as a healer.Tutu was one of many figures who established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), of which he was the chairman. The commission was a court-like restorative justice body intent on helping people overcome the pain experienced during apartheid.The East London City Hall was the venue of the first public hearing, in April 1996. It was the start of a two-year journey of healing. The final report of the TRC explained why it had chosen East London as its starting point: “The choice of a centre in the Eastern Cape was no accident, but a deliberate decision to focus attention on an area which had borne the brunt of some of the heaviest repression by the security forces of the previous government, in direct response to some of the most militant resistance.”Though there were threats to bomb the proceedings at the city hall, nothing occurred. The TRC has largely been hailed as a success in bringing out the truth, although some critics believe it did not help reconcile the groups at the time and that its effectiveness is still debatable today.#4 Heroes Park, East London Heroes Park in East London incorporates three monuments that remembers our freedom fighters and celebrates the country’s freedom and cultural diversity. (Image: Supplied)Heroes Park in East London not only honours South Africa’s struggle heroes, it is also a celebration of our freedom and the country’s cultural diversity. Situated across from the East London Aquarium, hundreds of struggle icons – from poet and activist Dennis Brutus to Nelson Mandela – are acknowledged, with their names etched into the granite Wall of Fame.Forming a large part of the memorial is the Multicultural Man statue, sculpted by Italian artist Francesco Perilli. Daily Dispatch described it as a monument that celebrated the history of the struggle and the country’s diversity. The Wall of Fame acknowledges struggle heroes and sporting icons who have links to the Eastern Cape. (Image: Panoramio)The three metre-high statue is of a faceless man standing in the middle of Earth. With his hands, aided by doves, he builds the world in which we live. This symbol of peace, cultural diversity and humanity is one of four – the others are in Toronto, Canada; Sarajevo, Bosnia; Sydney Australia; and Changchun, China.Despite Heroes Park being a symbol of the country’s recent struggle for freedom, it also incorporates the German Settlers Monument, which pays homage to the German families who arrived in East London between 1856 and the 1870s. In January 2015, mosaic murals were installed depicting the lives of the early immigrants in the Eastern Cape.#5 Memorial to the Six Million, Johannesburg Memorial to the Six Million is one of Herman Wald’s many public sculptures that remain a part of South Africa’s cultural landscape. (Image: to the Six Million in Johannesburg’s Westpark Cemetery pays tribute to the Jewish men, women and children who lost their lives during the Second World War.The monument depicts six bronze fists, each five feet high, bursting out of the ground as a protest from the dead. Each fist represents one million Jews who perished under Hitler.The twenty foot ram horns they hold depicts the Jewish ritual trumpet that blast out the sixth commandment “Though shalt not kill”. In pairs, the fists form the three arches of trials and tribulations that Jewish people have experienced over generations of persecution.Built in 1959, the monument was the brainchild of Herman Wald. Wald was born in Hungary and studied in Budapest, Vienna, Berlin and London. He moved to South Africa in 1937 where he lived and worked until his death.He was responsible for many large public works in South Africa of which two are significant: The Stampede in central Johannesburg and Diggers Fountain in Kimberley.#6 Mandela House, Soweto Nelson Mandela’s humble first home has become a must-see spot when visiting South Africa. (Image: Shamin Chibba)“It was the opposite of grand, but it was my first true home of my own and I was mightily proud. A man is not a man until he has a house of his own,” wrote Nelson Mandela in his autobiography, The Long Walk to Freedom of his first home on Vilakazi Street in Soweto.The house consists of four interconnected rooms and is filled with memorabilia and photographs of the family. Mandela moved into this house in 1946 with his first wife, Evelyn. After their divorce in 1957, he married Winnie Madikizela, who moved into the home with him.When he was released from prison in 1990, he returned to this home. But he only stayed in the house for 11 days. He donated it to the Soweto Heritage Trust in 1997 so it could be used as a museum.#7 Bhisho Massacre Memorial, Bhisho Twenty-eight marchers were shot and killed by the Ciskei Defence Force in what became known as the Bhisho Massacre. (Image: Buffalo City Tourism)Drive south-west along the R63 in Bhisho, Eastern Cape, and you will come across the Bhisho Massacre Memorial, a facebrick and granite structure that pays homage to the 28 marchers who were killed on 7 September 1992.On that day, about 80 000 people gathered outside Bhisho – the capital of Ciskei at the time – demanding an end to Oupa Gqozo’s military rule and the re-absorption of the so-called independent black homeland into South Africa. The marchers were led by top ANC and SACP officials, including Chris Hani, Cyril Ramaphosa, Steve Tshwete and Ronnie Kasrils. When they tried to pass the Ciskei Defence Force to enter Bhisho, Gqozo’s soldiers were instructed to open fire.Today, each of the victims’ names is engraved on the granite wall.At the unveiling of the monument in 1997, Archbishop Desmond Tutu said South Africa paid a high price for its freedom and that the massacre nearly shattered the dreams for a new South Africa.Kasrils had been blamed in the past for the massacre, with sources saying he had led a breakaway group through an opening in the Bhisho stadium fence. This allegedly led to the killings. At the unveiling, Kasrils defended himself, saying that it was easy for people to pass judgement. “We did not pull the trigger; ours was a struggle for freedom.”#8 Langa Memorial, Uitenhage The Langa Memorial, also known as Heroes Monument, in Uitenhage pays homage to the 20 marchers who were killed by police in 1985. (Image: Department of Arts and Culture)Most South Africans are familiar with the Sharpeville Massacre that took place on 21 March 1960, a date that is now remembered as Human Rights Day. But another, little known, massacre took place on that very same date in Langa, Uitenhage, 25 years later.On 21 March, 1985, police fired at a group of marchers who were observing the 25th anniversary of the Sharpeville Massacre, killing 20 of them.According to historian Alistair Boddy-Evans, the incident occurred when marchers gathered in Langa and were preparing to move on to KwaNobuhle, 10 kilometres away, where the commemorative service for the 1960 massacre was to be held. But marchers did not know the government had banned the event. It was reason enough for the police to open fire.There was an international outcry following the incident and the Kannemeyer Commission was immediately appointed to investigate the cause of the shooting. Judge Donald Kannemeyer absolved the police from culpability for the deaths but found the banning of funerals on doubtful grounds and improper riot control equipment as the main factors for the massacre.In memory of the 20 people who died on 21 March 1985 in Uitenhage in the Eastern Cape, the Langa Memorial, also known as Heroes Monument, was unveiled in the KwaNobuhle Cemetery a year after the incident took place. The tombstone in the graveyard was vandalised in June 1987 and re-erected in March 1994.#9 Diggers Fountain, Kimberley A tribute to Kimberley’s diggers stands in the Ernest Oppenheimer Memorial Gardens. (Image: Kimberley City Portal)The discovery of diamonds in Kimberley in 1871 brought thousands of miners and fortune hunters to the small Northern Cape town, to try their luck at striking it rich.To mark the history of the town – it still occupies an important position in the world diamond industry – the Miners Memorial, or Diggers Fountain, was installed in the Ernest Oppenheimer Memorial Gardens. The bronze sculpture portrays five men holding up a diamond sieve.It was designed by Herman Wald in 1960, and stands as a tribute to all the diggers who congregated on the town.#10 Freedom Charter Monument, Kliptown South Africa’s Constitution contains many of the tenets from the Freedom Charter, which was drawn up 60 years ago. (Image: Shamin Chibba)On 26 June 1955, over 3 000 representatives of resistance organisations made their way through police cordons to gather on a dusty square in Kliptown, then a freehold area 40 kilometres south of Johannesburg.This was the Congress of the People, who met to draw up the Freedom Charter, an alternative vision to the repressive policies of the apartheid state.That dusty field has now been declared a national heritage site. On 26 June 2005 the then President of South Africa, Thabo Mbeki, lit a flame of freedom in Kliptown to mark the opening of the Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication – and 50 years of the Freedom Charter.Walter Sisulu was a delegate at the 1955 Congress of the People, a major figure in the anti-apartheid struggle, deputy president of the ANC, underground activist and Rivonia treason trialist.Released from prison in 1989, he died in 2003, the year the R160-million Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication project was initiated.#11 Steve Biko statue, East London The Steve Biko statue in East London pays homage to the leader of the Black Consciousness Movement leader who was killed while incarcerated.(Image: Shamin Chibba)Look on the side of the Steve Biko statue outside the East London City Hall and you will find familiar names: musician Peter Gabriel, and actors Denzel Washington and Kevin Kline. These were just three of the many donors who made the statue possible. Washington and Kline depicted Biko and Donald Woods respectively in the 1987 film about the late Black Consciousness Movement leader, Cry Freedom.The statue honours Biko, whose activism helped to empower black South Africans to reclaim their dignity. In I Write What I Like, a collection of his writings, he says: “black is beautiful”. With these words, he meant: “Man, you are okay as you are, begin to look upon yourself as a human being.”Thousands gathered on Oxford Street as Nelson Mandela unveiled the bronze statue of Biko on 12 September 1997 outside the East London City Hall. Attendees included Gabriel, who performed his song, Biko, at the unveiling; Virgin Group founder, Richard Branson; and Woods, the former editor of the Daily Dispatch and Biko’s friend. Azapo members delayed the unveiling, to show their discontent that a white artist sculpted the statue.The monument was defaced twice in the first three weeks after the unveiling. But today, it has been accepted as an important part of the city’s landscape.The statue is one of six landmarks along the Steve Biko Heritage Trail; the others are Biko Bridge in East London, his home in Ginsberg, the Steve Biko Garden of Remembrance just outside King William’s Town, his old Black Community Programmes office at 15 Leopold Street in King William’s Town, and Zanempilo Clinic in Zinyoka.#12 Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum, Johannesburg The Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum honours those children who lost their lives in 1976. (Image: Brand South Africa)On 16 June 1976, at the age of 12, Hector Pieterson was shot by police during the student uprising in Soweto. Although not the first to be shot – that was probably 15-year-old Hastings Ndlovu – he was the first to die.The picture taken by news photographer Sam Nzima of his body being carried by Mbuyisa Makhubo, his sister, Antoinette, running at their side, became a global symbol of apartheid oppression.That morning, Soweto’s schoolchildren were marching against being taught in Afrikaans at schools. When they reached Maseko Street, police opened fire.Today, the Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum is a testament to their struggle to end apartheid. Nzima’s photo is central to the monument.#13 Nkosi Albert Luthuli Statue, KwaDukuza Albert Luthuli’s memorial pays homage to one of Africa’s most respected leaders. His political activism was so important to the struggle that he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1960. (Image: KwaDukuza Municipality)The Nkosi Albert Luthuli memorial comprises a bronze figure of Albert Luthuli, a wall featuring two bronze elements and, underneath the historic Indaba Tree, a bench, all set in a landscaped environment.This can be found at the KwaDukuza Municipal Chambers in KwaZulu-Natal and was unveiled in 2004.Luthuli’s home in KwaDukuza, formerly known as Stanger, was a meeting place for people linked to South Africa’s freedom struggle during the years of Luthuli’s banishment. It was also proclaimed a museum in August 2004.President-General of the African National Congress from December 1952 until his death in 1967, and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1960, Chief Albert John Luthuli was the most widely known and respected African leader of his era.The Order of Luthuli is South Africa’s highest award for contributions to democracy, human rights, justice and peace. #14 Holocaust Centre, Cape Town The Cape Town Holocaust Centre was the first of its kind to be opened in Africa. (Image: Robert Cutts)The Cape Town Holocaust Centre was the first to be created in Africa; it opened its doors in 1999. It serves as a memorial to the six million Jews who were killed in the Holocaust during World War 2, as well as for the other victims of the Nazis, such as homosexuals and gypsies.The aim of the centre is to “teach about the consequences of prejudice, racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia, homophobia, and the dangers of indifference, apathy and silence”. There is also a Holocaust Centre in Durban, and one is planned for Johannesburg.#15 Solomon Mahlangu statue, Mamelodi Anti-apartheid activist, Solomon Mahlangu, was just 23 years old when he was hanged in the gallows of Pretoria Central Prison. His remains were only moved to his birthplace of Mamelodi in 1993, after being buried in Atteridgeville for 24 years. (Image: Carnival & Solomon, Tshwane Municipality)The Solomon Mahlangu statue was unveiled in his birthplace of Mamelodi in 2005, 26 years after he was executed for being an activist against apartheid.The 23-year-old Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) member was wrongfully accused of murder and terrorism, and was hanged at Pretoria Prison’s gallows on 6 April 1979.According to South African History Online, Mahlangu joined the African National Congress in September 1976. He trained as an MK soldier in Angola and Mozambique before returning to South Africa in 1977 to assist with student protests.On 13 June of that year, Mahlangu and his companions, Mondy Johannes Motloung and George Mahlangu, were arrested for the deaths of two civilian men. Mahlangu pleaded not guilty when he was tried but was later charged with murder and terrorism, and executed.Mahlangu was buried in Atteridgeville, Tshwane.On 6 April 1993, his body was reinterred at the Mamelodi Cemetery where his supposed last words on a plaque read: “My blood will nourish the tree that will bear the fruits of freedom. Tell my people that I love them. They must continue the fight.”Watch the trailer of the film Kalushi based on Solomon Mahlangu’s lifeComrades talk about who Solomon Mahlangu was as a personWatch Mike Terry remember the little chance they had to stop the hanging of Solomon MahlanguChris Hani talks about the Solomon Mahlangu Freedom CollegeWatch President Jacob Zuma launch the Solomon Mahlangu Scholarship Fund#16 Slavery Emancipation Monument, Elim Elim was initially a refuge for the indigenous Khoi people until it was taken over by hundreds of slaves. Most its 1 400 residents living there today are descendants of the slaves. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)In memory of emancipated slaves who found refuge at Elim in the Overberg, Western Cape, is the slavery emancipation monument. Elim, with its whitewashed thatched cottages, Moravian Church and the oldest working clock in South Africa, is a national treasure.The mission station at Elim was established in 1824, when German missionaries arrived at the Cape. Biblically, Elim is the place the Israelites rested after crossing the Red Sea.The monument was first built in 1938 and was “re-unveiled” in 2004 after falling into disrepair in the 1990s. It was rebuilt in time to mark the United Nations declaration that 2004 was the year to celebrate the victory of humanity’s struggle against slavery.#17 Constitution Hill, Johannesburg The Constitutional Court has become a bastion of South African human rights and culture. (Image: Brand South Africa)Constitution Hill in Braamfontein, Johannesburg houses the highest court in the land – the Constitutional Court. But the history of the precinct is marred by pain and suffering. Before being transformed into the court, the hill housed The Fort.It was a notorious prison, with sections for “natives”, women, and awaiting trial prisoners. It housed common criminals together with ordinary citizens who were only guilty of breaking unfair apartheid laws.“The prison complex of the Fort has impacted deeply on hundreds of thousands of ordinary South Africans’ lives as it was essentially a transitory prison where prisoners were held until they were sentenced before being transferred to serve their prison terms elsewhere,” reads the Constitutional Hill website.It was chosen as the home of the Constitutional Court in the mid-1990s. Other sections of the old prison have also been transformed into memorial centres and museums, including the Women’s Gaol, Number Four, and the Old Fort.Its significance is captured on video:#18 The Workers’ Library and Museum, JohannesburgWith the workmen’s quarters housing 396 men, there was no space for privacy. They slept in long rows of hard concrete “beds” next to one another. A wooden platform above the concrete beds accommodated more men. (Image: City of Johannesburg)The Workers’ Library and Museum is housed in a restored municipal workers’ compound in Newtown. Built in 1913, it is the only intact example of an early municipal compound in Johannesburg.The workmen’s quarters housed about 396 men who worked on the city’s electricity generating plant right on their doorstep.Used until the 1970’s, the compound was renovated with one wing being developed as a museum and the other to house meeting rooms, offices and a library. The buildings were recognised as a National Monument in 1995, and an important part of working class heritage.#19 Mahatma Gandhi statue, Pietermaritzburg The bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Pietermaritzburg was unveiled a century after he was thrown off a train in the town’s train station. (Image: Guillaume Cingal, Flickr)The events of the night of 7 June 1893 changed the course of Mahatma Gandhi’s life, and would lead to his becoming the Mahatma. Plying his profession as a lawyer, the young Indian had come to South Africa for work. On the night, he was travelling from Durban to Johannesburg and had a first class ticket for the train. But he was told to leave the European compartment to go to the third class section, where non-white passengers sat. When he refused to do so, he was thrown off the train at the Pietermaritzburg Railway Station.He later wrote: “I was afraid for my very life. I entered the dark waiting-room. There was a white man in the room. I was afraid of him. What was my duty? I asked myself. Should I go back to India, or should I go forward with God as my helper, and face whatever was in store for me? I decided to stay and suffer. My active non-violence began from that date.”Gandhi’s movement for peaceful resistance to oppression and racial discrimination began that night. It would go on to have a significant and sustained impact around the world. To honour his activism, in June 1993 – a century later – Archbishop Desmond Tutu unveiled a bronze statue depicting Gandhi in Church Street, Pietermaritzburg.#20 The Gallows, Pretoria Central PrisonDescribed by “Saturday Star” as South Africa’s “factory of death”, the gallows at Pretoria Central Prison saw more than 3 500 hangings. This image was taken at the Apartheid Museum’s exhibition of the gallows. The 131 nooses shown represents the number of anti-apartheid activists who were hanged there. (Image: Apartheid Museum)The gallows of the Pretoria Central Prison opened in December 2011 in memory of the political prisoners who were executed during 1967 and 1989. At this centre’s opening, families of the deceased said their healing has started.According to Wikipedia, the prison’s official name is Kgosi Mampuru II Prison. More than 100 political prisoners were executed here during apartheid. Executions took place on Saturdays and were viewed by the public.Capital punishment ended in South Africa on 6 June 1995 by the ruling of the Constitutional Court, following a five year moratorium since February 1990.The Department of Correctional Services says prisoner, Alexander Anderson, built the first prison in Pretoria at the corner of Pretorius and Paul Kruger streets. He was serving a 12 month sentence when he struck a bargain: if he built the prison he would be acquitted.The second prison was built in 1873 in Bosman and Visagie streets. The third [and last] construction of the prison finished in 1907 at 1 Kgosi Mampuru Street.Watch President Jacob Zuma tour the gallows at Pretoria Central PrisonWatch the ceremony of the museum opening and families of political prisoners talking about their healing#21 The Unknown Miner, JohannesburgThe Unknown Miner is a casting of the original prototype of The Diamond Diggers sculptor Herman Wald created in the 1950s. This statue stands at Wits University in Johannesburg. ( Chamber of Mines building for the Engineering and the Built Environment Faculty at the University of Witwatersrand’s (Wits) is not just the home for students and staff of these departments. It is also the home of Herman Wald’s The Unknown Miner for more than three years.According to the website, the monument was erected to recognise the hard work of the unacknowledged miners of Johannesburg that established the ‘City of Gold’ in 1886.In the late 1950s, Harry Oppenheimer commissioned Wald [1906 – 1970], a sculptor, to create two works to celebrate the life and achievement of his father, Sir Ernest Oppenheimer.One was The Diamond Diggers situated in Kimberley, and the other is The Stampede, otherwise known as The Impala Fountain, in Johannesburg.The prototype consisted of five figures holding up a sieve that forms the Diamond Diggers Fountain installed in Kimberley in 1959. Wald’s sons then began production of The Unknown Miner in 2011 and erected it at Wits University in November of that year.Watch the history behind Herman Wald and his sculpturesWatch Louis Wald talking about his father Herman’s struggle as an artistWatch students and experts on Wits’ campus talk about the Engineering Faculty – the home of The Unknown Miner#22 The Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg The Apartheid Museum in Joburg opened in 2001 and has become a must-see for locals and visitors. (Image: Brand South Africa)Joburg’s Apartheid Museum, assembled by a multi-disciplinary team of architects, curators, film-makers, historians and designers, takes the visitor on a powerful emotional journey into South Africa’s past. It brings to life the story of a state-sanctioned system based solely on racial discrimination.The museum features large photographs, metal cages and monitors replaying scenes from South Africa prior to 1994. It is situated next to the Gold Reef City casino and theme park, five kilometres south of Joburg’s city centre.It has become one of Johannesburg’s leading tourist attractions, an almost obligatory stop for visitors and residents alike.After a few hours at the Apartheid Museum you will feel that you were in South Africa’s townships in the 1970s and ’80s, dodging police bullets or teargas canisters, marching and toyi-toyiing with thousands of schoolchildren, or carrying the body of a comrade into a nearby house.See this for more:“It is not only important to tell the apartheid story, but it is also important to show the world how we have overcome apartheid. There certainly is a lesson for other countries, and this [is] related through the complexity and sheer power of the installations,” explains the museum’s director, Christopher Till.Source: South African History OnlineWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

Mid-Ohio Lamb Classic held by West Holmes FFA

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest On May 23rd, the West Holmes FFA Chapter held their annual Mid-Ohio Lamb Classic show at the Holmes County Fairgrounds. The show had over 170 lambs shown. The judge for the morning event was Jason Schuck. The people across Ohio came to show their lambs and to help recognize the West Holmes FFA Chapter and their efforts.  The Chapter also held numerous sponsors at the event to help raise the money to put the show on.Furthermore on Monday May 25th, the West Holmes FFA Chapter held a Float in the Nashville Parade that afternoon to honor both the veterans and the Chapter. A special thanks goes out to Ken Krebs for allowing us to use their trailer in this eventlast_img

Overcoming the fear of margin calls

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest It’s pollination week in much of the Corn Belt. In general, the weather is supportive with warm weather and adequate moisture levels. Now the focus turns to estimating the yields across the Midwest.Interestingly Kansas and South Dakota planted the same amount of acres to corn as Indiana and Ohio according to USDA forecasts. Usually Kansas and South Dakota only have state wide yields of 135 while Indiana and Ohio experience 175.Minnesota plants about 80% of the corn acres as Indiana and Ohio combined and some of the best corn in the Midwest is in Minnesota. Currently, it’s anybody’s guess as to how bad the east will be this year, but reports from the west are very encouraging.All the negative news about Illinois could be offset by potential record setting yields in Iowa where they plant 10% more acres to corn than Illinois. Nebraska is the third largest producer of corn and it might be about the only state that will be near “normal” this year.For all the concern about Missouri and to some extent Michigan, North Dakota and Wisconsin produce approximately the same amount of corn and they are having great growing conditions this year. These four states are the ninth to 12th biggest corn states and likely will continue to be in that range again this year.This certainly doesn’t guarantee that the national average for yield will remain above 166 as the USDA has estimated to this point. The corn market has a premium built into the market currently. If yields were to remain above 164 that would likely push prices below $4 again. If yields are in the 162- to 163-neighborhood then corn is justified to trade where it is currently. A drop to 160 or 161 will likely push corn futures to the high $4s and we might even see $5 per bushel again. Below 160 and the sky is the limit for futures. Fear of using the futures marketI’ve previously explained the benefits of trading futures. Today, I’ll explain the “dreaded” margin call.As a true hedger, I don’t like calling it a margin call, because that term is most often associated with speculators. A speculator making a margin call is in a bad financial situation. I’m not a speculator, I’m a hedger, and a hedger making a “margin call” is more accurately just making a finance decision. It’s not a bad thing. Let me explain further.Margin calls for hedgers are typically a net neutral (neither a gain or loss).When using the futures market to hedge grain, it doesn’t really matter if I have to make a margin call. For example: I choose to make a sell when Dec futures are $4 per bushel in June. In August, corn rallies from a weather scare and Dec corn increases to $6 per bushel. Margin call means I have to have the difference between what I have my grain sold for in futures and the current CBOT futures price. So, I will need to make a $2 per bushel margin call to my futures trading account.This part frightens farmers. That’s a lot of money. But, there is no reason to be worried, because I’m not losing that money. I harvest my grain in October and I could take the grain immediately to the local elevator, assuming the market is still the same (it doesn’t actually matter what price it is, for simplicity sake I’m leaving it the same) in October as it was in August, I could sell it for $6 per bushel. Then immediately I turn around and BUY my futures back at $6. I receive $6 per bushel on the corn delivered to the elevator. This leaves me net neutralWhen I combine my hedge account and the check for the physical grain, I lose $2 per bushel in my futures account but I still sold the corn for $6. This is where I net out $4 per bushel, which is where I originally made my sale. At the time I sold in June I thought I was making a good sale. This is the point where I get back all of my margin call money. But I don’t have cash just lying around to make margin call payments. This sounds bad.Most farmers don’t have a bunch of cash sitting around. Farmers hedging grain need to work with their bankers. For my clients, I have worked with their bankers first to set up a path for margin calls as a part of a hedging position. This is a very low risk loan for bankers, so they are usually extremely supportive.In the above example I sold futures in June and delivered at harvest (four months). If the rally didn’t start until August, it would mean a $2 per bushel loan for three months (August to October). With a typical interest rate of 5% on an operating loan, this means only 2.5 cents per bushel interest for the margin call for those three months (math = $2 x 5% / 12 months for a monthly rate x 3 months). Why would I even do this then? I could have just sold grain to my elevator and not worried about margin call.If corn rallies due to a major drought, you can’t take advantage of basis levels and other premium opportunities unless you use futures contracts or Hedge To Arrive contracts (or HTA’s). For instance, in 2012 (a drought year), I received 80 cents per bushel more for my corn that I sold using futures than farmers who sold corn flat price to an end user the same day as me and took the cash price quoted. Why not use an HTA and let someone else make my margin call?I prefer to carry my own hedge because the cost of an HTA is approximately the same price as I will have in my futures brokerage and the interest on any margin call. This allows me the benefit of being able to find the end user who may be paying more for corn at or after harvest. It’s not uncommon to see end users have 10 to 20 cent pushes in their bid. I want to be able to take advantage of this premium in the market. I can’t guarantee where the best bid will be three months in advance so locking my grain up with and end user now isn’t something I want to do.Another benefit – if farmers are unable to produce corn (e.g. due to weather), it’s easier to get out of futures sales than asking end users to be let out of contracts, be it cash trades or HTA’s. Myth – Making a margin call is badMany farmers may be shocked by this, but making a margin call is a GOOD thing. Here’s why.Typically I don’t price all of my corn at any given time, and I doubt most farmers do either. I usually hold some back for potential market rallies. As described above, I have to pay margin call on my priced/sold grain with every rally. But, this means the corn I haven’t priced/sold yet is now worth more. All future unsold grain is now worth more. Since I plan to farm well into the future, I have more corn to sell, maybe not this year, but next year I will.Margin call means corn you haven’t priced/sold is worth more. Embrace it. I’m too scared of the margin call.Margin call scares most farmers the first year of futures trading. This is why I highly recommend using a marketing advisor to walk farmers through it. I always make sure that my banker understands exactly what I’m doing and what my potential borrowing needs could be.Many of my clients have expressed reservations and fear that first year when they have to cut a $5,000 to $10,000 check several weeks in a row (despite knowing they will eventually get it back). For example, a farmer raises 600 corn acres at 150 bushels per acre and hedges 50% by June 1. Say they have a $2 margin call — it could be upwards of a $90,000 margin call. That’s a lot of money. However, this farmer will be getting that money back later AND they’ll also have an opportunity at improved basis levels that their neighbor who didn’t use futures. Typically after the first year my clients wonder why they didn’t start using futures sooner.Don’t let your fear of margin calls keep you from using the biggest marketing tool there is to hedge your grain and take advantage of market opportunities. Savvy farmers understand it and use the tools that are available to increase profits and minimize risk.Jon grew up raising corn and soybeans on a farm near Beatrice, NE. Upon graduation from The University of Nebraska in Lincoln, he became a grain merchandiser and has been trading corn, soybeans and other grains for the last 18 years, building relationships with end-users in the process. After successfully marketing his father’s grain and getting his MBA, 10 years ago he started helping farmer clients market their grain based upon his principals of farmer education, reducing risk, understanding storage potential and using basis strategy to maximize individual farm operation profits. A big believer in farmer education of futures trading, Jon writes a weekly commentary to farmers interested in learning more and growing their farm operations.Trading of futures, options, swaps and other derivatives is risky and is not suitable for all persons. All of these investment products are leveraged, and you can lose more than your initial deposit. Each investment product is offered only to and from jurisdictions where solicitation and sale are lawful, and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations in such jurisdiction. The information provided here should not be relied upon as a substitute for independent research before making your investment decisions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC is merely providing this information for your general information and the information does not take into account any particular individual’s investment objectives, financial situation, or needs. All investors should obtain advice based on their unique situation before making any investment decision. The contents of this communication and any attachments are for informational purposes only and under no circumstances should they be construed as an offer to buy or sell, or a solicitation to buy or sell any future, option, swap or other derivative. The sources for the information and any opinions in this communication are believed to be reliable, but Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy of such information or opinions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC and its principals and employees may take positions different from any positions described in this communication. Past results are not necessarily indicative of future results. He can be contacted at [email protected]last_img read more

John Jantsch, on Duct Tape Selling and the New Way To Sell – Episode #32

first_imgPodcast: Play in new window | Download (39.4MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Email | Google Podcasts | RSSOne of the most influential and insightful books Anthony has ready recently is by his guest today, John Jantsch. “Duct Tape Selling” is John’s approach to the newly emerging marketplace where sales calls happen and look different due to changing company structures and new communication and technology tools. He believes that sales teams that keep selling as they have in the past will be left behind, simply because the old approaches and methods don’t work in light of how businesses and individuals are working in the modern era. You’ll get a ton of great insight from this conversation and a helpful preview into John’s book.What should #salespeople do when the way the market has worked for ages has changed? ~ with John JantschClick To TweetMost sales professionals misuse the whitepapers their company creates.John Jantsch laughs as he talks about the emails and calls he receives where a salesperson mentions their great whitepaper that could address a topic of interest and all they do is provide a link to it. John’s suggestion: Copy and paste a pertinent paragraph or point from the whitepaper to include in the email or memo. It’s much more helpful to make it easy for your prospect to see the value you are offering them than it is to wait on them to take that step (which they probably won’t). There’s a ton of value in John’s approach to the new, digital marketplace so be sure you listen to hear how he guides entrepreneurs and businesses to adapt for continued success.If you think THIS is prospecting, you’re wrong.Anthony and John are both flabbergasted by the number of calls and emails they receive that essentially admit that the salesperson on the other end of the communication has not done their homework before reaching out to them. If you’re sending out letters, emails, or calls that say, “I don’t know exactly what you do, but we can offer you…” – then you’re doing one of the most stupid things possible. If you want your potential clients to believe that your product can address the needs they have, you’ve got to demonstrate to them that you’ve taken the time to understand at least some of what their needs may be. John’s got a great approach to this type of interaction and you can get his advice on this episode.The inexcusable things salespeople do, thinking they are prospectingClick To TweetSales managers need to look for different types of salespeople these days.In case you haven’t noticed, the marketplace is changing. In fact, it’s already changed in many significant ways. Companies are no longer doing business on a B2B level like they used to. As one example, many don’t even use the telephone anymore. It’s in this changing landscape that sales managers need to begin thinking in new paradigms, new ways of approaching the still-vital role of their sales teams. John Jantsch says that individuals who are outside the box of the traditional “sales personality” may be the answer and he gives some tips about how managers can identify and enlist those people, on this episode of In The Arena.If you are an entrepreneur, you don’t have time NOT to blog.John Jantsch understands the tension being communicated by busy entrepreneurs when they say that they don’t have time to blog. Running a business, no matter what size, is a very time intensive thing. But his experience has shown him that the discipline of blogging regularly has opened doors for him that never would have been opened if he hadn’t been blogging. In his thinking, all those months of blogging with seemingly no results was really a long-term effort at positioning himself as a thought leader in the sales and marketing arena who had something valuable to say. His commitment showed potential clients that he was not a fly-by-night guy and actually had expertise that would benefit them. Find out how John suggests you get started blogging for your own benefit, on this episode.Why entrepreneurs don’t have time NOT to blog, with John JantschClick To TweetOutline of this great episode How Anthony and John got connected and how John is ramping up things in the sales and marketing world. Why every small biz owner and entrepreneur need to read John’s book, “Duct Tape Marketing.” How marketing people need to understand salespeople, and vice versa. Using whitepapers as sales tools in a more effective way. The inexcusable things salespeople do, thinking they are prospecting. Why sales managers need to be looking for a different type of salesperson. Why John believes companies need to give away more to garner sales. The importance of blogging to establish John as a thought leader. Why entrepreneurs don’t have time not to blog. John’s take on effectively using LinkedIn and other industry related groups/sites. The power of a great social surrounding strategy.Resources & Links mentioned in this episodewww.DuctTapeMarketing.comwww.DuctTapeSelling.comJohn on Twitter: on LinkedIn: The theme song “Into the Arena” is written and produced by Chris Sernel. You can find it on SoundcloudConnect with AnthonyWebsite: www.TheSalesBlog.comYoutube: Plus: you can use to share this episodeWhy sales managers need to be looking for a different type of salespersonClick To TweetWhy John Jantsch believes your company needs to give away moreClick To TweetSubscribe toIn the ArenaApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsAndroidby EmailRSSOr subscribe with your favorite app by using the address belowlast_img read more

X-Blades Legend RFX Promotion

first_imgTo take advantage of this great deal, please visit the X-Blades online shop and enter the code ‘TFAFR’ at the checkout. To visit the X-Blades online shop, please click on the following link: Stay tuned to the TFA website for more great promotions from X-Blades. Related LinksX-Blades Promotion This fortnight Touch Football Australia’s (TFA) official footwear sponsor, X-Blades, will be promoting another great deal through the TFA website and newsletter.  X-Blades has a great deal for TFA members, with a special on its Legend RFX Red boots, which are reduced from $180 to $70 and includes free freight. The specifications of the boot include Kangaroo leather upper, injected EVA wedge for comfort, bionic dual density outsole with graduated blade lengths.last_img read more