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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 05:00 am

Posted by Harriet Grant

Exclusive: a year after Britain took in hundreds of ‘Dubs’ children, charities say delays are causing distress and at least one young person has been left sleeping rough

Lone children brought to the UK from Calais following a campaign last year are facing bureaucratic limbo and precarious living conditions, which has led in at least one case to a young person sleeping on the street.

A year after the arrival of the first children under the so-called Dubs scheme, which brought unaccompanied asylum-seeking children from Calais to the UK, the Guardian found that many are still waiting to hear if they will be allowed to stay in the country.

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 05:00 am

Posted by Michael Hann

Since his death, a complicated picture of the comedian has emerged. We were friends at the height of his fame and I saw his cruelty first hand. Others say that he later changed, before his drinking spiralled out of control

Carl Donnelly was driving on Monday morning when his phone rang. He could not pick up, but when he saw who had called – someone who was friends with him and Sean Hughes – he guessed what was coming. He called back and learned that Hughes, just 51 years old, had been picked up from his home by an ambulance on Sunday night. On the way to hospital he went into cardiac arrest. He died shortly afterwards. It transpired that he was also suffering from cirrhosis of the liver.

Related: Sean Hughes obituary

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 05:00 am

Posted by Emma Sky

As Kurds flee the city of Kirkuk yet again, it’s clear that only a negotiated settlement can bring stability

This week has seen thousands of Kurds fleeing the city of Kirkuk in the face of the advance of the Iraqi army. The scenes conjure up memories of Saddam Hussein’s campaigns against the Kurds.

The reversal of Kurdish fortunes in this city come just weeks after Kurds voted overwhelmingly for an independent Kurdistan.

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 05:00 am

Posted by Yudhijit Bhattacharjee

Davon Mayer was a smalltime dealer in west Baltimore who made an illicit deal with local police. When they turned on him, he decided to get out – but escaping that life would not prove as easy as falling into it. By Yudhijit Bhattacharjee

On a humid summer day in 2004, Davon Mayer stepped out of his house on Bennett Place in the heart of Baltimore. Sixteen years old, Davon was short, plump and baby-faced, still more of a kid than an adolescent. Like many other boys in his neighbourhood, he had long since stopped going to school and was dealing drugs full-time.

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 04:59 am

Posted by Claire Phipps

NZ First leader to reveal whether he will form coalition with National or Labour to take Bill English or Jacinda Ardern into government

For those coming fresh to the live blog just in time for the (expected) announcement, a quick catch-up.

Twenty-six days ago, on 23 September, New Zealanders went to the polls to choose their next government.

While we wait for Winston Peters, reporters in Wellington seize on any hint of a clue:

Have now heard two rounds of clapping from the labour offices (i'm one floor down)

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Monday, October 23rd, 2017 11:51 pm
But it's pricey! The total cost was going to be near $2000, with a six-day-a-week commitment.

Then I realized I can just pay for the labs, which is the only part I really want anyway, and that's a third the price and a one-day-a-week commitment.

She said she'll consider it.

It's not necessary for her to take a Regents in August (fully nine months earlier than any of her peers...), I'd just like her to.

Also, finally figured out what cake I'll bake tomorrow for her birthday. How does rosewater and ginger sound? If I ever find my rosewater, I mean. It's because I read this article, but anyway, it's a good idea. I've been rocking the rosewater lassi lately that I get at the supermarket.


The Microbes That Supercharge Termite Guts

For ornery shelter cats, 2nd chance is a job chasing mice

What Star Wars taught scientists about sperm

Inside The Weird Texas Tradition of Enormous Homecoming Corsages

Book's challenge: Can you do squats like Justice Ginsburg?

Why a New Zealand Library’s Books Kept Vanishing, Then Reappearing (Happy ending!)

How Domestication Ruined Dogs' Pack Instincts

Star Wars themes, but with the major and minor reversed. (This is like the Mirror version of the music, I guess? I can just picture evil Tom Paris on classic movie night in the Holodeck, rubbing his beard as he watches this version of the trilogy, the one in which the mighty emperor defeats the puny rebellion.)

Hero dog: 'Animal guardian' saves 8 pet goats, orphaned deer from wine country fires

Filling the early universe with knots can explain why the world is three-dimensional

Baba Yaga on the Ganges

Why Parents Make Flawed Choices About Their Kids' Schooling (My experience tells me it's close to impossible to explain to people that a school that starts with high-performing kids and ends with high-performing kids is not doing as much as a school that starts with low-performing kids and ends with kids that are in or approaching the middle. They just don't understand, or want to understand. Also, Stuy is overrated.)

Judge orders government to allow detained teen immigrant's abortion (Only read this second link if you want to be stunned and horrified by the world's most ridiculous anti-abortion argument ever.)

Understanding the coevolving web of life as a network

Fish Depression Is Not a Joke (Sad ending. Journalist should've rescued Fish Bruce Lee.)

After victory in Raqqa over IS, Kurds face tricky peace

Despite potential trade sanctions, Kurds continue with exports

China Is Quietly Reshaping the World

Lawsuit: Bighorn sheep threatened by domestic sheep grazing

As anti-drug push's toll grows in the Philippines, so does church's pushback

The true cost of a plate of food: $1 in New York, $320 in South Sudan (Sorta - the prices are adjusted in a weird way to account for different spending power)

Leaked ICE Guide Offers Unprecedented View of Agency’s Asset Forfeiture Tactics

Why Are Prosecutors Putting Innocent Witnesses in Jail?

The Crazy Flood of Tech Revelations in the Russia Investigation

The Russian Troll Farm That Weaponized Facebook Had American Boots on the Ground

No, US Didn’t ‘Stand By’ Indonesian Genocide—It Actively Participated

The Trump Administration Is Letting Americans Die in Puerto Rico, Nurses Say

Trump’s Dangerous Spin on Puerto Rico’s Suffering

Hurricanes Make the Need to Dismantle Colonial Economics in the Caribbean Increasingly Urgent

The Danger of President Pence

A Gun to His Head as a Child. In Prison as an Adult.

Chilling Photos of the Hundreds of Thousands of Rohingya Fleeing Burma
Thursday, October 19th, 2017 04:44 am
The US would "never have the same relationship with China, a non-democratic society," he added.
Thursday, October 19th, 2017 04:03 am

Posted by Ask a Manager

It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…

1. What’s up with “dream jobs”?

This may be a pet peeve of mine, but it grates on my nerves when I see the term “dream job” in a letter writer’s question. I see it used so frequently — once or twice a week, maybe more — that it leaves me wondering how many of these jobs can truly be “dream jobs.” Maybe a better term would be “fantastic opportunity” or “chance to get my foot in the door of this industry/organization.”

Do you have any sense from readers as to how many of those “dream jobs” truly manifested into the unbelievable opportunity they thought it would be? Realistically, I’d bet that after they got the job they found out the boss sucked or the coworkers were unpleasant or they hadn’t anticipated how much they would hate the long commute or that there were zero opportunities for raises/promotions or any number of other factors. To me, the term “dream job” is something a young person who hasn’t spent much time in the work world would say, and it strikes me as very naïve. A job is a collection of factors, and they’d all have to be nearly perfect for me to consider it a dream job. And it’s impossible to know all those factors when you haven’t even worked at the place yet.

Totally agree. I actually ranted about that here a few years ago.

You can’t tell if something is your dream job until you’re already there and working in. There is literally zero way to tell from the outside if you’ll be happy there — you could end up hating your coworkers, your boss, the culture, all sorts of things.

Of course, what people really mean when they say “dream job” is “this is the type of work I want to do, configured exactly the way I’d create a job for myself if I could.” Or sometimes it’s company-specific — “I’ve always thought it would be amazing/prestigious/rewarding to work at this particular organization.” But either way, it can be a dangerous mindset, because when you go into a hiring process thinking “dream job,” you’re more likely to miss signs that it’s not actually a situation you’ll be happy in.

2. My coworker is doing my work, but it’s not her fault

I work on a team that is at least double the size it needs to be for the amount of work we have. Occasionally there will be busy periods, but mostly we all have quite a bit of downtime. One of my coworkers, Jane, who is extremely good at this job, put in her resignation because she was moving. My manager didn’t want to lose such a good worker, so offered for Jane to work second shift remotely from her new locale.

The gist of our job is that we all are assigned tickets from a big chunk. We all can see all of the tickets, but certain ones are assigned to us and then we “help out” when we’re finished with our assignments. Jane has been doing all of my work. I come to work in the morning and only have about one-third to one-half of the work I was expecting for the day (which was not very much to begin with). When I look to see where all of my work went, I see that Jane did it. Sometimes it’s work that isn’t due for a week or more (and I was “saving” for slow times). I am getting frustrated because now I have large sections of time with absolutely nothing to do. It’s not Jane’s fault, we’re all just trying to get our eight hours in. I’ve asked my manager for additional projects, but nothing more has been given to me. Do I risk sounding like I’m not a team player if I talk to Jane or my manager, since we are expected to help out when we’ve finished our own assignments and Jane isn’t doing anything wrong?

I’d start with Jane. Can you say something like this to her: “I’ve noticed that recently you’ve been doing a large portion of the tickets assigned to me. Often it’s work that isn’t due for a week or more and that I’m saving for slower times. I’m coming in in the mornings and finding that you already did up to half of the work I planned to do that day, which is really impacting my ability to manage my workload. So if there are tickets assigned to me, can you leave them for me? I’d really appreciate it.”

Of course, that may not work — it sounds like there’s a fundamental problem here with the staffing levels — but it’s a reasonable thing to say and it may help. More broadly, though, if your team is double the size needed for the work, I’d worry about your longer-term job security (and I’d worry that this situation with Jane may be the thing that brings the problem to light for your boss), and so it might be smart to think about whether you want to lay the groundwork for a job search too.

3. My position isn’t mentioned in a job posting for my boss

I work for as a development associate for a nonprofit. I report to the junior development director and the senior development director. The senior director was just fired and she was the one who hired me (around six months ago). The junior director is in the midst of transferring positions within the organization. I found the job posting for the junior posting and it mentions overseeing every member of my six-person department except my position. Two of those positions have been added recently (created and hired six months ago), while I believe my position has existed for quite some time. Should I be concerned that this may allude to plans to eliminate my position or that I’m going to be fired?

It’s possible that it was just an oversight, which wouldn’t be surprising given the amount of turmoil that it sounds like they have there right now, but it’s also possible that it wasn’t. The best thing you can do is to ask your boss (even though she’s in the process of moving positions). Say this: “I noticed that in the ad for your replacement, it mentions the person will manage each of the positions on our team except for mine. Do you know if there are other plans for my position?”

If they do plan to eliminate your job and haven’t told you that yet, she’s not likely to tell you just because you ask (the timing of that is usually strictly controlled). But you’ll probably learn something by asking the question and hearing her reaction. She may instantly tell you she noticed that too and was kicking herself for forgetting it in the job description, or that you’re actually going to be reporting to someone else on the team, or who knows. Or she may stammer and look nervous, which would be its own kind of information.

4. I’m getting business emails from a company I don’t work for

I’ve been in the job hunt for a while now, and I’ve applied for a couple of positions at a local company. While I haven’t gotten a reply to my applications, something odd has happened a couple of times: I’ve been getting business correspondence from the people who work there. It’s never anything compromising — it seems to be back-and-forth emails about making travel plans — and I think what’s happening is that one of the parties involved has a name similar enough to mine that when someone types in the first few letters of their name, I accidentally jump ahead of them in their contacts list.

Should I jump in and tell them? Up until now, I’ve been ignoring these when they pop up because I didn’t want my first interaction with these people to be pointing out one of them making a mistake (that just screams “bad first impression”). However, it occurs to me that even though it hasn’t been anything serious yet, there’s no guarantee that it won’t be later, not to mention if these emails are getting sent to me, it’s possibly they’re not going to who they’re supposed to. Should I say something or just let them work it out on their own?

Say something! You’re not going to make a bad impression by politely alerting them that you’re receiving emails they didn’t intend for you. You will make a bad impression if you apply in the future, they search for previous correspondence with you, and a bunch of misdirected emails pop up that you never said anything about.

So: “I think you intended this for a different Jane! Wanted to alert you so that it gets to the right person.”

5. Job applications through Facebook

We are hiring for an entry-level position. It’s pretty much intended for someone’s first job — the pay is low, but the benefits are good, and it’s a foot in the door of a university that does have lots of good jobs (a lot of the better-paying jobs require that someone have worked at the university). In other words, we’re working with applicants who aren’t very experienced at job-hunting.

We posted a link/ad for the job on Facebook, and didn’t realize that Facebook makes it look as though you can apply directly through them! There is a button says “Apply Now,” and it takes people to a form that they can fill out. Facebook says it is sending on the application. We didn’t know that (the receptionist who left wasn’t checking Facebook in the last week), so I just found out today that there are people who submitted applications that way.

The job has closed, and we were about to start interviewing. I think we owe it to people who applied via Facebook to consider their applications. It might mean we would have to open the job again; I’m fairly sure the U does require that applicants use their portal for job applications. Other people on the hiring team think that the applicants were “boneheads” for not applying for a job through the proper channels.

If you posted an ad on Facebook, people were not boneheads for thinking that the “apply now” button was in fact a place where they could apply now. The people on your hiring team who think otherwise are being really unfair with that assumption; they’re bringing their own internal knowledge to it (“we only accept applications through our official job portal!”) and assuming outside candidates will know that, which they can’t.

That said, you’re not obligated to consider the applicants who came to you through Facebook; you’re never obligated to consider any particular group of candidates (as long as you’re not discriminating based on race, sex, religion, disability, etc.). It would be a courtesy to do that since they spent time applying, but you don’t have to. If you’re very happy with the candidates you already have, you could decide to stick with them. But I think you’d be doing yourselves a disservice by not at least looking through those candidates to see if there’s anyone you want to invite to apply through your portal. The difference between an okay person in the job and a great person in the job is a significant one, and I’d hate for you to overlook a potentially great candidate on principle.

my coworker is doing my work, what’s up with “dream jobs,” and more was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.

Thursday, October 19th, 2017 04:36 am

Posted by Claire Phipps

NZ First leader to reveal whether he will form coalition with National or Labour to take Bill English or Jacinda Ardern into government

That suggestion earlier that the NZ First leader was waiting to crash the 6pm (4pm AEDT/6am BST) TV news bulletins is firming up, with several reports now that Peters is preparing his speech. To say what exactly we still don’t know.

Greens leader James Shaw has told RNZ that his party, Labour and NZ First have many things in common:

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 04:00 am

Posted by Jon Henley in Valletta

Murdered investigative journalist’s sons tell of attempts on their mother’s life, and why they blame a ‘takedown of the rule of law’ in Malta for her death

Looking back, they had known – perhaps for a long time – that it might end like this. With hindsight, says Matthew Caruana Galizia , red-eyed from emotion and lack of sleep, it seems obvious. “This wasn’t an aberration,” he says. “It was a culmination.”

The air in the family home in the hamlet of Bidnija, half an hour’s drive from the Maltese capital, Valletta, is thick with grief and quiet anger. Police guard the entrance to the gravel driveway and the cast-iron gates in front of the house.

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 03:37 am

The annual art event brings a range of works to the Sydney coastal walk between Bondi beach and Tamarama. This year the outdoor exhibition celebrates its 21st birthday, featuring creations by 104 artists from around Australia and the world. It runs until 5 November

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 03:22 am

Posted by Tom Phillips in Beijing

Decision to grant Xi his own eponymous school of thought represents a momentous occasion in Chinese politics and history

China’s communist leader Xi Jinping looks to have further strengthened his rule over the world’s second largest economy with the confirmation that a new body of political theory bearing his name will be written into the party’s constitution.

On day two of a week-long political summit in Beijing marking the end of Xi’s first term, state-media announced the creation of what it called Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era.

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Thursday, October 19th, 2017 12:35 am
Silks class #4 is the day after tomorrow, so I guess if I'm gonna muster up any semblance of a post about weeks 2 and 3 I'd better do that.

Week 2 )

Week 3 )

Three classes done, five to go. My feeling at this point is that this was probably unrealistically ambitious for someone who hasn't taken any physical classes in a long, long time or really done any focused exercise since I stopped climbing several years ago, but despite almost none of it coming naturally, I'm mostly enjoying it. I'm kinda hoping it'll give me a push to taking some kind of class after this (like barre!) that's more suited to where I currently am physically.

It's also probably just as well, in one sense, that (so far) I'm not in love with silks, much as I think they're incredibly cool. The sad reality is that evening classes are rarely feasible around Casual Job, so finding a level 2 (or beyond) timeslot for something as specific as silks that'd actually work for me logistically seems...unlikely. But we'll see. And meanwhile, "enjoying it well enough" is not a bad place to be.
Thursday, October 19th, 2017 02:46 am

Posted by Claire Phipps

NZ First leader to reveal whether he will form coalition with National or Labour to take Bill English or Jacinda Ardern into government

As well as hammering out policy agreements and disagreements, a key factor in building a coalition will be personal: who will Winston Peters and co want to work with?

Before the most recent election campaign, Peters and Bill English were thought to have had a generally good relationship and a mutual respect. But that soured earlier this year, when Peters called on English to resign as prime minister after Todd Barclay, a government MP, resigned amid claims he made illegal tape recordings of a former staff member.

I don’t believe English is a straight shooter.

Marama Fox, co-leader of the Māori party who – along with the rest of her party – lost her seat in parliament in the election, has run a snap poll on Twitter to gauge which way followers think Peters will go, and it’s as good a guess as any at this point:

.Which way will Winnie crumble?

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