Tuesday, February 24, 2015

DJ Maretimo - Jazz Loungebar Vol. 1, 2

DJ Maretimo - Jazz Loungebar Vol.1 (Full Album) HD, 2013, Smooth Bar Lounge Music

A green room with white couches.


DJ Maretimo - Jazz Loungebar Vol.2 (Full Album) HD, 2014, Smooth Bar Lounge Music

A red room with white couches.


Claudia's good news is a victory we can all share

GOOD NEWS! All charges dropped against torture survivor Claudia Medina Tamariz

Please pass on my gratitude to everyone who supported me in Canada"
Dear Tracy,

All charges have been dropped against Claudia Medina Tamariz, the Mexican woman who was tortured and forced into a false confession in 2012.

Thank YOU for playing a part in this moment of celebration! 

We met Claudia last year while in Mexico for the launch of a major Amnesty International report on the widespread use of torture in Mexico. Meeting Claudia was a highlight of this important human rights mission to Mexico.

As my colleague Kathy Price, who joined me on this human rights mission, says in her account of this tremendous victory, this is the second piece of heartwarming news to follow our visit to Mexico. It was only a few months ago that we celebrated the release from prison of Ángel Amílcar Colón, who had also been tortured and wrongfully detained  for "confessing" to crimes he did not commit.

Please accept the deep gratitude of Claudia, who wishes you to know that:
“The charges would not have been dismissed without the help of all of you."

Read: Claudia's good news is a victory we can all share

Warmest regards,


Alex Neve,
Secretary General, Amnesty International Canada 

Maretimo Sessions - No.14, 15

Maretimo Sessions - No.14 Singapore - Selected by DJ Maretimo, HD, 2014, Lounge Music

A big city with a big lake in front of it.  There's a sunset.


Maretimo Sessions - No.15 Ocean Cruisers - Selected by DJ Maretimo, HD, 2014, Lounge Music

There's a sunset.  There's a silhouette of a cruise ship and a palm beach on the left side.


Maretimo Sessions - No. 11, 12, 13

Maretimo Sessions - No. 11 Brazil - Selected by DJ Maretimo, HD, 2014, Football World Cup Lounge

Christ the Reedeemer statue is on a big mountain.  It overlooks the city and the ocean.


Maretimo Sessions - No. 12 Lost In Space - Selected by DJ Maretimo, HD, 2014, Weightless Sounds

A space station and a space ship floating over a planet.


Maretimo Sessions - No.13 Dubai - Selected by DJ Maretimo, HD, 2014, Oriental Lounge Music

A city at night.  There's a big lake in between two highways.


I'm going to the AGM. Are you?

I'm going to the AGM.
Are you?
Dear Tracy,

Every activist has a moment that inspired him or her to movement. What's yours?

My moment came when we learned the fate of Troy Davis. I'd been involved with Amnesty International USA since my freshman year of high school. Through my work, I learned about Troy's case, and I became passionate in doing everything I could to ensure justice for Troy -- from collecting signatures, to organizing events, to calling on authorities to grant him a new trial.

In the moment that a court in Georgia decided that Troy would be executed, I was called to movement. I realized in that moment that I could never stop doing this work. I realized that the world needs people -- activists -- like us to really advocate for those at risk of human rights abuses and to stand with the oppressed in demanding justice.

Now, as a 20-year-old college student, I am still involved with Amnesty as the National Youth Action Committee Representative for the Northeast. I organize, facilitate workshops, train young activists and work daily to progress human rights in the U.S. and around the world.

Please join me in reenergizing that call to advocacy at this year's national Human Rights Conference -- our 50th Annual General Meeting. Register to attend today.

Each year at the AGM, we have the unique opportunity to come together as activists. Together, we deepen our organizing skills. We attend hands-on workshops and plenaries. We discuss and vote on resolutions that shape Amnesty's policies. Most importantly, we share stories of survival and our ideas on how to create change.

Amnesty International USA is working to highlight and empower all voices, including those of the youth. Together, we realize that our voices, and our stories, make a difference.

My story and Amnesty's story both started with a moment. So tell me: What's your moment?

See you in Brooklyn.

In solidarity,

Gerry Rivadeneira
Student, human rights activist and AGM program committee member

P.S. You receive $10 off when you purchase two or more tickets at the general rate -- so be sure to invite your friends! Register today.

Women's Rights need your vote!

30 Years since federal leaders held a debate on Women's Rights 

Dear Tracy,

When I wake up the morning after this year’s federal election I want to know that the government elected is going to act on the issues that affect me and other women and girls in Canada.

I want to know that our political leaders are going to concretely address the staggeringly high rates of violence against Indigenous women. I want to know that they are going to make sure that women don’t earn 20% less than men for the same work. And I want them guaranteed that childcare will be available to make sure that parents who want to work can.

Together we can make this dream a reality! Join us and call on all political party leaders to commit to participating in a federally broadcast debate on the issues affecting women and girls.

Let’s put the issues affecting women and girls—and therefore families and communities across Canada--#UpForDebate this year!

Sharmala Setaram.jpg

Sharmala Setaram,
President, Amnesty International Canada

Monday, February 23, 2015

“Identifying the workplace that works for you”

Feb. 16 “Identifying the workplace that works for you”: I cut out this article by Barbara Moses in the Globe and Mail on Sept. 14, 2012.  This is a good article discussing about instead of what your career is, but what your workplace is.  Some companies are not going to be a fit for you.

I know some people don’t like to work at a big company because they feel like they are a number instead of a name.  Some people like working for a big company because of job security.  Some people have no preference about the size of the company.  Here’s the article:

Many people return to work after a vacation break dissatisfied and start to ruminate about making a major career change. But all too often when people are unhappy, they attribute their distress to what they are doing – their role and the skills they are using – rather than to where they are doing it.

If you are experiencing career distress, consider the possibility that you need a change of scenery rather than a major career change.

Whenever I first visit a company, I am struck by the degree to which organizations, like people, have their own distinctive personalities – happy or sour, outgoing or withdrawn, energetic or calm. Just as with people, there needs to be the right chemistry to make a match with your work environment.

You can learn a lot about what it feels like to work somewhere, and whether you will make the right connection, simply by walking around and observing. Is there a lot of earnest conversation in which people seem engaged? Do people seem happy? Note the office layout, the kind of art on the walls, how people dress.

Different industries tend to have their own character, but within an industry there can be huge differences. On book tours, for example, I have visited newspaper offices across Canada. In some offices, employees looked like they had just rolled out of bed and were miserable; while in others, it seemed staff had put some thought into their dress and were happy.

Before you leap into a major career reinvention, there are several factors to consider that will help identify your best workplace environment, given your values and work style. If you are working for a large company you might find that the role you are in is a good match – you just need to switch departments.

Nature of the business

The core work of the company, and the kinds of services or products it delivers, influence its culture. Consider the personality of an organization composed of helper types such as human resource professionals, social workers, nurses. It will tend to be more nurturing because of the values and motivations associated with helping roles, compared with those in tougher industries, such as manufacturing or construction. If you are a more sensitive person, hard-nosed environments will be more difficult for you.

Risk and reward levels

There is significantly more risk involved with a miscalculation at a hydro utility (a massive blackout, say) than at a hotel (too many guests for too few rooms). Whether the risks are financial, environmental or safety-related, in industries where prudence is required, cautiousness tends to permeate the entire organization. Workers in these types of companies tend to have strong motivational desires for security.

The size of potential rewards is also important. For example, investment banking tends to be less risk-averse than life insurance because the potential payoffs are great. These differences are also reflected in people’s motivations and work behaviours.

Pace of work

It can be demanding to work in an organization where many things happen at once without much advance planning – though many people thrive in such environments. Compare a busy retail environment and a public accounting firm, for example, in terms of the number of people interactions and the necessity for backroom analyses.

Staff education

Knowledge workers – those with higher education and more training – are more expensive to replace than less-educated employees who engage in routine transactions. As a result, knowledge-work organizations tend to treat their employees more benevolently, with greater developmental opportunities, flexible work options and better benefits.

Importance of the function

Is the function of the job (or the department or division) seen as overhead for the business? Or is it seen as a source of profit? Consider the role of human resources. For years, HR has lobbied to be seen as an important player at the management table. But because many companies, perhaps incorrectly, see HR as overhead – necessary for compensation and employee relations but not a profit centre – it has often been treated as inferior.

Want to find an organization where HR is seen as important? Look to knowledge-worker environments, where managing talent is critical to attract and motivate staff.

Average tenure

One of my clients complains that whenever he suggests an alternative way of doing something, he is slapped down by colleagues for not understanding the company’s culture. The five years he has spent in the company hardly qualifies him as being new on the block, but relative to the average 18-year tenure of other staffers, he is seen as an upstart.

Companies that employ a lot of long-tenured staffers tend to more cautious and risk-averse, and can be resistant to new ideas. They tend to have high needs for security and dislike novelty and change.

Age and gender composition

As a result of Gen Y expectations, organizations that employ many young educated staffers, such as professional service firms, tend to be more responsive to concerns about flexibility and work/life balance. Similarly, female-dominated organizations tend to more concerned about employee sensitivities and desires than male-dominated companies, because women tend to be more attuned to others’ feelings.

Barbara Moses, PhD, is a speaker, organizational career management consultant and the author of Dish.