Join the club

first_img Comments are closed. Not content with sitting at home waiting for the phone to ring, casualtiesof the US recession have been proactive in seeking work – tapping into the jobsgrapevine via self-help groups  Wiling away an afternoon at a Silicon Valley cinema last June, out-of-workInternet executives Michael Feldman and Andrew Brenner had an idea as theyjoined the other dotcom casualties in the queue – why not start a social clubfor people in the same boat as themselves? Thus was hatched Recession Camp – an online organisation hosting a roster ofpursuits to drag the laid-off legions away from the lonely job-hunting trail.Fashioned after the summer camps that are an American rite of passage,Recession Camp has captured the imagination of the post-boom economy in a wayneither of its thirty-something founders dreamt of. In San Francisco and Silicon Valley, ground zero for the downturn, theorganisation has garnered more than 600 members since Feldman and Brennerreserved an Internet domain name and posted their Web pages a few months ago.An average 25 people flock to thrice-weekly events such as wine tastings orpicnics. The phenomenon has easily eclipsed the splash made by either of the dotcomstart-ups both formerly worked for. “It’s just got way out of hand,”says Feldman, ex-CEO of an online marketing firm. The two have fielded callsfrom other time-rich former high-fliers in London and New York to set upsatellite chapters of Recession Camp and have found themselves emblazonedacross the pages of Business Week and the Los Angeles Times. Despite suggestions that they have a company on their hands, Feldman andBrenner insist Recession Camp is strictly a hobby until either finds work.Nevertheless, with the camp’s continued success, Feldman admits to having givencommercial possibilities some thought. However, it would be hard to cash in onthe finance-strapped unemployed participants who rely on the camp for bothpractical and emotional support. “It’s a great networking outlet,” says one such camper BrianFrank, laid off from a software start-up in March. “We trade leads and[job-hunting] experience.” On top of physical interaction, campers can logonto online bulletin boards to swap experience and advice. As well as helpingeach other tap the employment grapevine, Recession Camp offers a group hug forthe unemployed, much as a self-help group provides psychological support.”We commiserate and cry on each other’s shoulders,” says Frank. In the San Francisco Bay area, where the IT-heavy workforce has been at thesharp end of the slowing economy, Recession Camp is just one of a menu ofself-help consolations to combat the out-of-work blues. Meanwhile, despite the emergence of grass roots upstarts, traditionalback-to-work services continue to flourish. Many established Silicon Valleyfirms are using outplacement firms to soften the blow of redundancy. The NewJersey-based Lee Hecht Harrison, for instance, counts contracts with six of theleading 10 companies in the region. Under its contract with California-basedHewlett-Packard the firm has put a global network of 10 dedicated careerscentres at the disposal of 6,000 staff laid off by the computer and printermaker in July. “Centres are set up like regular work offices with cubicles, faxmachines and administrative staff,” says Sharon Winston, Lee Hecht’ssenior vice-president in San Jose. Also part of the package are trainingseminars, interactive workshops, round table discussions and networking groupevents. The programme is available for one to 12 months, depending onemployees’ length of service. “We’ve tried to revolve the programme around treating employees withdignity and respect,” explains HP global workforce management policy andprogramme manager Steve Hastings. In addition, Lee Hecht holds regular jobfairs for ex-HP staffers. An event in Silicon Valley, earlier this month, drew30 employers with most of the 250 attendees thronging the booth of HP rivalIBM, according to Winston. Such cross-industry co-operation is surprisingly commonplace among US ITfirms. Santa Clara-based Intel, which retains Wright Resources as itsoutplacer, recently opened its doors to other IT companies to help laid-offstaff find work. However, the most staggering example of one company reaching out to othersis an e-mail from Dell Computer CEO Michael Dell to fellow IT executives. Themissive paid tribute to staff axed in the PC and laptop maker’s cost-cuttingefforts and beseeched other companies to consider them for any availablepositions. Borrowing from its direct sales model of bypassing the middle manand selling straight to customers over the Internet, Dell has christened theinitiative, “Direct2Dell Talent”. Of course, many fired workers cannot count on the umbrella of a well-heeledcorporation to kick-start their job search and this is where self-help hasfilled a vacuum. Cash-strapped or bankrupt dotcoms without the resources tosplash out on expensive exit services for departing staff have accounted formore than 116,000 redundancies since January 2000, according to the latestfigures from Web Mergers. Also swelling support group ranks are former workers for whom Recession Campand its kin are an adjunct to outplacement services. Those who find themselvesin the jobs market after their entitlement to such services has expired, havealso joined the do-it-yourself fold. Although Recession Camper Brian Frank is not eligible for lavish corporateoutplacement services, his multi-stranded approach is typical of many earnestCalifornia job seekers. As well as Recession Camp, the former softwareexecutive is a member of the alumni association of his alma mater CornellUniversity and the Young Alumni of the Bay area group for Ivy League graduates.Both groups offer mentoring, help with CVs and invaluable networkingopportunities, says Frank. Meanwhile, Recession Camp co-founder Feldman says the group is contemplatingproffering its services to companies as an official resource for laid-offworkers. Far from treading on their toes, Recession Camp and similar groupscomplement the work of outplacement firms, according to John Challenger, CEO ofChicago-based outplacer Challenger, Gray & Christmas. “Outplacement firms do not find jobs for people… [they] exploreresources and should leave no stone unturned,” says Challenger.”Every [social] circle that people can excavate is to theiradvantage.” Self-help groups take their cue from university and corporate alumniorganisations, notes Challenger. It is the Internet, though, that has been thecatalyst for extending the idea beyond college or corporate boundaries.”Through e-mail people have the ability to send a message to 1,000 othersin a single mouse click or keystroke,” says Challenger. “Previously,people scattered to the wind after a downsizing,” he says. Now they cancongregate online. However, at the same time, the Internet is bringing down the curtain on manytraditional career centres, which are finding themselves spurned by IT-savvyjob seekers. Casualties of previous recessions flocked to Lifeprint, a SanFrancisco career centre, to pour over its binders of job listings. This time,they scour the Web for openings. Lifeprint, which has also been stung bydotcoms that hired its services for laid-off staff then defaulted on paymentswhen they folded, is now preparing to shut down. The going is also tough for independent career counsellors, who are findingthere is not a lot of spare cash around for their services these days.Combining the convenience of the Web with the networking opportunities ofevents, Recession Camp and similar groups offer job- seekers an effective toolto get their foot in the door. However, such informal organisations are not without potential pitfalls.After all, misery loves company. “You can have the people who are mostemotionally upset and panicky guide the whole group in this direction,”says Challenger. And assuming that their members remain constructive, any grouphas its work cut out getting people back to work in the current job market.”The jobs are not out there,” admits Feldman. Feldman says he is being choosy about his next job. Nevertheless, hediligently puts in several hours a day working the phone and chasing leads andas a three-time company founder and two-time CEO with a computer science degreefrom Massachusetts Institute of Technology offers impressive credentials. He isnot too discouraged by the lack of response, however, pointing to RecessionCamp’s other attractions. Since setting it up he’s had no shortage of dates, hesays, and other members attest too, to the matchmaking power of the group. “It is also a chance to get more balance into your life,” heexplains. “I’ve been in Silicon Valley, working hard, for 12 years[without] the time to stick my head up for air.” The new way to networkWhen hardware, software and Internetcontent companies rode the good times in the late 1990s, high-end serviceindustries sprang up to cater to their high-rolling employees. Now the localeconomy has hit hard times, luxury car showrooms and boutique restaurants havebeen displaced by back-to-work groups of various hues.Like Recession Camp, many axed workers are doing things forthemselves. Ex-workers from computer chip giant Intel, computer hardware firmHewlett-Packard and other Silicon Valley firms that have laid off thousandsthis year congregate in tight-knit support groups. Such groups typically meetat local restaurants to swap job leads over a cheap lunch.Also on the Web, Laidoff Central, started in June by laid-offArlington, Virginia Web developer Steffen Tengesdal, offers online condolencesand bulletin boards for members to exchange employment gossip.Meanwhile, Los Angeles-based Layoff Lounge with chapters in SanFrancisco and Silicon Valley offers job-hunting tips with a social bent.Typical gatherings combine cocktails with lectures and pooling of job leads.Jobless tech-support staff, the unsung heroes of the Internetrevolution, flock to their own support group at Cupertino’s Career ActionCenter in downtown Silicon Valley. Other events at the centre, such as aworkshop entitled, “Marketing yourself to a roomful of strangers,”reflect the tough slog job-seekers face.In San Francisco’s financial district, out-of- workprofessionals convene every Friday at the Lifeprint career-counselling centre.Also on Friday, ProMatch, a state-funded career-counselling programme in SiliconValley’s Sunnyvale, whose streets are lined with downsized IT companies, counts250 members and a month-long waiting list.Also witnessing an uptake in business is philanthropic SanFrancisco social group DoGooDates, whose charitable activities such asdispensing food to the homeless draw a sizeable contingent of former dotcomers. Join the clubOn 20 Nov 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Residential Adjunct Engineering Faculty

first_imgPosting DetailsPosting NumberA00130PClassification TitlePosition TypeAdjunct FacultyDisclaimerLiberty University’s hiring practices and EEO Statement are fullyin compliance with both federal and state law. Federal law createsan exception to the “religion” component of the employmentdiscrimination laws for religious organizations (includingeducational institutions), and permits them to give employmentpreference to members of their own religion. Liberty University isin that category.Position TitleResidential Adjunct Engineering FacultyDoes this position require driving?NoContactJoyce Roberts, Senior Administrative Assistant to the DeanContact Phone Ext434-592-5868Contact [email protected] Summary/Basic FunctionIt is expected that an adjunct faculty member will model a personalcommitment to the goals and values of Liberty University, engage inan active commitment to and experience of personal spiritualformation within a biblically-informed Christian worldview, andfollow lesson plans developed for the course he/she isfacilitating. An adjunct faculty member should view the coursebeing taught as a means to a significant educational end. He/sheshould strive to employ a variety of techniques for the developmentof good learning conditions, view each student as a uniqueindividual, and, insofar as is possible, provide for individualdifferences, abilities, and interests.An adjunct faculty member:- Teaches material from approved curriculum in accordance withassigned schedule to ensure student satisfaction- Assists students in achieving completion of objectives andlearning outcomes- Provides regular and timely feedback to students- Participates in school retention initiatives by maintainingproductive conduct with students and by getting in touch with andoffering assistance to absent students- Motivates students to actively participate in all aspects of theeducational process- Maintains and reports student grades and attendance in accordancewith University policies, and- Completes other duties as assigned.Minimum QualificationsMust have:- An earned Master’s degree in an Engineering discipline from aninstitution accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by theU. S. Department of Education.- Superior interpersonal, customer service, presentation, andcommunication skills.- Creative, innovative and problem-solving skills.- Proven organizational skills and ability to complete assignmentsaccurately and in a timely manner with minimal supervision.- Proficiency in MS Office and the Internet.- If applicable, ability to obtain and maintain licenses asrequired by state or accrediting commissions.- Demonstrated strength in teaching at the college level.- Application submitted only via Liberty University’s onlineautomated application process.- A commitment to producing Christ-centered men and women withvalues, knowledge, and skills necessary to impact tomorrow’sengineering and technology-related disciplinesPreferred QualificationsThree years in the field of Electrical, Mechanical, or SystemsEngineering, or other Engineering discipline. Ph.D. in anEngineering discipline.Work HoursThis is a residential adjunct position. Class schedules will bedetermined on a semester basis by department chair and dean ofschool.Posting Date06/01/2018Special Instructions for ApplicantsResidential Faculty Application must be submitted, along with allaccompanying documents.Quicklinkhttps://jobs.liberty.edu/postings/15621Applicant DocumentsRequired DocumentsTranscriptsCurriculum VitaeTeaching PhilosophyPastoral Reference LetterAcademic/Professional Reference Letter 1Academic/Professional Reference Letter 2Unofficial Transcript 1Unofficial Transcript 2Optional DocumentsResumeCover LetterUnofficial Transcript 3Other DocumentProfessional License(s)Career Advancement Form (For Current LU Employees ONLY)Supplemental QuestionsRequired fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).last_img read more

Research Engineer I/II/III/IV/V/VI

first_imgPosition DetailsRequisition NumberS165PHome Org NameMechanical EngineeringDivision NameSamuel Ginn Col of EngineeringPosition TitleResearch Engineer I/II/III/IV/V/VIJob Class CodeJA01A-FAppointment StatusFull-timePart-time FTELimited TermYesLimited Term LengthThis position will be based on two-year terms which will berenewable based on performance and abilities to secure and supportexternally funded researchJob SummaryThis position will be based on two-year terms which will berenewable based on performance and abilities to secure and supportexternally funded research.The Samuel Ginn College of Engineering is seeking a ResearchEngineer to work for the National Center for Additive ManufacturingExcellence. A Research Engineer conducts research in various fieldsof engineering to design and develop technology and to carry outinvestigations, evaluation, and application of engineering theoriesand principles.Essential FunctionsPerforms a variety of research and development activities requiringthe application of engineering practices and principles.Works to execute projects, manage laboratories, interact withsponsors and write reports, proposals and scholarly papersEvaluates findings to develop new concepts, equipment, orprocesses.Ensures supplies are available and operational for use inprojects.Education LevelBachelor’s DegreeField of StudyMechanical, Materials, Aerospace or Industrial Engineering.Years of ExperienceLevel I- no experience; Level II- 2 years; Level III- 4 years;Level IV- 6 years; Level V- 8 years; Level VI- 10 yearsArea of ExperienceExperience in engineering and research practices andprinciplesRequirements for Additional Job LevelsThe candidate selected for this position must be able to meeteligibility requirements to work in the United States and mustcontinue working legally for the proposed term of employment.Education LevelField of StudyYears of ExperienceAdvance degree in lieu of experienceArea of ExperienceWhen a candidate has the required education, but lacks the requiredexperience, they may normally apply additional appropriateeducation toward the experience requirement, at a rate of one (1)year relevant education per year of required experience.Requirements for Additional Job LevelsMinimum Skills and AbilitiesMinimum Technology SkillsMinimum License and CertificationsDesired QualificationsSalary Grade32Salary Range$35,000-$131,600Job CategoryEngineeringWorking Hours if Non-TraditionalList any hazardous conditions or physical demands required bythis positionPosting Date03/09/2020Closing DateEEO StatementAUBURN UNIVERSITY IS AN AFFIRMATIVE ACTION / EQUAL OPPORTUNITYEMPLOYER . It is our policy to provide equal employmentopportunities for all individuals without regard to race, sex,religion, color, national origin, age, disability, protectedveteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, genderidentity, or any other classification protected by applicablelaw.Special Instructions to ApplicantsSome positions may require candidates to be a U.S. citizen.Please utilize the attachment feature of our online employment siteand attach the following: cover letter, resume and three (3)professional references. Only complete application materials willbe accepted for review.Quick Link for Internal Postingshttps://www.auemployment.com/postings/6776Documents Needed to ApplyRequired DocumentsResumeCover LetterOptional DocumentsSupplemental QuestionsRequired fields are indicated with an asterisk (*). * How were you made aware of this opportunity?AU Employment websiteEmployment websites (Indeed, HigherEd Jobs, etc.)Veterans Assistance ServicesDisability Assistance ServicesNewspaperProfessional JournalListservHR emailSocial MediaState Employment ServiceWalk-inOther * Do you have a a Bachelor’s degree from an accreditedengineering program in any one area of engineering such as:aerospace, biosystems, chemical, civil, software, electrical andcomputer, industrial and systems, mechanical and materialsengineering?YesNoWill obtain within 6 monthsHas a Master’s degree or higher in required fieldcenter_img * How many years of experience do you have in engineering andresearch practices and principles?0-12-34-56 or morelast_img read more

Oxford refuses to reconsider Aung San Suu Kyi honorary degree

first_img“If nothing changes, I think it is very likely that the city council will be stripping her of the freedom of the city,” councillor John Tanner told the Oxford Mail.“It’s something that we very much regret but clearly the reasons for giving her support have now changed.”Bristol University, one of several UK universities to have awarded Aung San Suu Kyi an honorary degree, said it was reviewing its award.LSE’s student union said it would be stripping the former political prisoner of her honorary presidency.“We will be actively removing Aung San Suu Kyi’s honorary presidency as a symbol of our opposition to her current position and inaction in the face of genocide,” said Mahatir Pasha, the union’s general secretary.Among her critics has been fellow Nobel Peace Prize winner and incoming Lady Margaret Hall student Malala Yousafzai. She wrote on Twitter that “the world is waiting” for Aung San Suu Kyi to condemn the suffering of the Rohingya community.My statement on the #Rohingya crisis in Myanmar: pic.twitter.com/1Pj5U3VdDK— Malala (@Malala) September 3, 2017Aung San Suu Kyi studied PPE at St Hugh’s College, gaining a BA in 1967 before studying for an MA in Politics.In a televised address yesterday, Aung San Suu Kyi said: “There have been allegations and counter-allegations. We have to listen to all of them.“We have to make sure those allegations are based on solid evidence before we take action.” Oxford University has called on Aung San Suu Kyi to “eliminate discrimination and oppression”, in light of the expanding humanitarian crisis in Myanmar, but has said it is not reconsidering her honorary degree.A number of UK universities and institutions have withdrawn or suspended honours given to Myanmars’s de facto leader, after the displacement of around 400,000 of the country’s Rohingya Muslim minority, which the UN has described as a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing”.In a statement to Cherwell, Oxford said Aung San Suu Kyi’s honorary degree, awarded in 2012, is not currently under discussion, but expressed the university’s “profound concern” about the treatment of the Rohingya community.“Since the country established its first democratically elected government for more than 50 years, in 2015, Oxford has expanded a wide-ranging programme of assistance to  universities in Myanmar, in particular the University of Yangon,” the statement said.“The institution’s goal is to support peaceful and inclusive democracy, strengthened rule of law, and the provision of greater economic opportunities through higher education.”It called on Aung San Suu Kyi, who graduated from St Hugh’s College in 1967, to act on the growing crisis. “The University remains committed to these ideals, and hopes the Myanmar administration, led by Oxford alumna Aung San Suu Kyi, can eliminate discrimination and oppression, and demonstrate to the world that Myanmar values the lives of all its citizens.”The statement stopped short, however, of reviewing the honorary degree bestowed on Aung San Suu Kyi in 2012, one of the University’s highest honours, awarded to only a handful of international figures each year.In recent days, a number of institutions have suspended or reviewed awards given to Myanmar’s leader. Yesterday, Oxford councillors announced they could reconsider the freedom of the city of Oxford awarded to Aung San Suu Kyi in 1997.last_img read more

Postal Service Food Drive Set for Dec. 8

first_imgAll donations will go to the Ocean City Ecumenical Council Community Food Cupboard. Letter carriers across the country, in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service, will be collecting food for families in need on Saturday, Dec. 8.In Ocean City, carriers ask that residents collect and bag non-perishable food items, then place them by their mailboxes for pickup on Dec. 8. All food will be donated to the Ocean City Ecumenical Council Community Food Cupboard. Please do not include items that have expired or are in glass containers.Volunteers are needed to help unload trucks and weigh, sort and shelve items. Students needing community service hours are welcome. For more information and to confirm attendance, call Dottie Cianci at 609-398-5563.Some recommended items include:Canned meatsCanned vegetablesCans of fruitCans of soupCerealTunaCans of tomatoesMacaroni-and-cheeseCans of ravioli, Spaghetti O’sPork and beansRamen noodlesIndividual packets of dry milkJuiceJellyPeanut butterJello/pudding mixCrackersRiceMicrowaveable items are also needed, including:Mac-and-cheeseRavioli, Spaghetti O’s, lasagnaCups of soupMicrowave soupsMicrowave riceHormel microwave mealsLaundry detergent, dish detergent, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, toilet paper and paper towels are also requested.last_img read more

Baking Industry Awards seats are a sell-out!

first_imgTickets for the Baking Industry Awards have now sold out.Those of you who have secured your seats for the industry’s premier event, hosted by top comedian Ronnie Corbett, are sure to have a fantastic night, and we are delighted to announce that Darren Bennett and Lilia Kopylova from the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing will provide entertainment on the night.Darren, who dances with his wife Lilia, won the second series of Strictly Come Dancing with Jill Halfpenny and recently starred in the third series alongside Gloria Hunniford.The 1930s-themed awards, which take place at the Park Lane Hilton, London, on Tuesday 8 September, will be full of top names from the industry and provides a great opportunity to network. The evening will include a champagne drinks reception, sponsored by Warburtons and three-course meal, after which the winners of the awards will be announced.To find out more about Darren and Lilia before the event, visit www.darrenandlilia.com.last_img read more

Jamestown Health Care Provider Seeking Protective Equipment, Cleaning Supplies

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Photo: PixabayJAMESTOWN – A health care provider in Jamestown is asking for the community’s help in obtaining crucial protective equipment and cleaning supplies.The Chautauqua Center on Tuesday launched a supply drive in an effort to encourage donations.The Center is seeking donations of the following items from community members and organizations:Disinfecting wipesGlovesSurgical masksN-95 masksFace/eye shieldsSurgical gownsCenter officials say it is crucial that health care workers have access to the protective equipment and cleaning supplies needed to keep them safe on the job. Any items that are collected will be used at the clinic sites and, if possible, shared with hospitals and other health organizations.“We are hoping to see donations from groups such as dental providers who have temporarily closed, construction companies and individuals who have a large supply of a specific item. Every little bit helps, and the sooner the better” said Dan Courtney, Marketing Assistant at the Center.To limit personal contact, drop boxes for these items have been set up.In Jamestown, items can be left outside, under the covered parking area at 107 Institute St. In Dunkirk, items can be deposited in the lobby of the dental/behavioral health clinic at 314 Central Ave.Donors are asked to drop items in the box, with staff collecting, cleaning and distributing donations appropriately. Large donations can be arranged and/or picked up by staff by calling (716) 484-4334 ext. 1314 or emailing [email protected]last_img read more

AJs Texas Hots Remains Open, Safe, Following Positive COVID Case

first_imgImage by Justin Gould / WNY News Now.JAMESTOWN — AJs Texas Hots on Foote Avenue will continue normal operations and hours after being cleared by the Chautauqua County Health Department when an employee tested positive for COVID-19.Co-owner and General Manager Sam Fitch told WNYNewsNow the employee who tested positive did not have contact with any customers the day he was ill, was sent home and will return to work a week or so after he is cleared of his quarantine.“You are safe coming to AJs. I can promise you, you’re safe coming to AJs,” Fitch said. “We love you and appreciate you as a community for all the support you’ve given us over the years.”Sam says on June 25, a part time employee wasn’t feeling well and went home, the restaurant staff reported.  The employee took the rest of the week off and got tested for COVID-19. On July 2, the test came back positive for COVID-19. The restaurant was never in jeopardy of closing. The staff at AJs was already practicing several safety measures, Fitch said. They all wear masks, have sanitizer stations throughout the restaurant and continue to clean and sanitize as they always have, Fitch explained.“We are still open, drive through only, the lobby will remain closed until all restrictions are lifted for the COVID-19,” he said. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Pesticide credits

first_imgCertified pesticide applicators need reecertification training and continuing education credits to maintain their licenses. University of Georgia Cooperative Extension has planned pesticide applicator recertification classes for May in Albany and Gainesville.The Albany class is set for May 21 from 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at the Dougherty County Extension Office. The Gainesville class will be held at Lanier Technical College on May 24 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.Both classes cost $45 for those who register by the early deadline. The Albany class registration fee rises to $55 after May 13 and the Gainesville class rises to $55 after May 16.Certified applicators can earn five hours of Georgia Commercial Pesticide Credit in categories 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39 and 41 for attending each class. Private applicators can earn up to two credit hours.Experts from UGA Extension and the Georgia Department of Agriculture will teach the classes. The Dougherty County and Hall County offices of UGA Extension are sponsoring the recertification training sessions. For a complete schedule or to register online, visit the website www.ugagriffincontinuingedu.com. For more information, call (770) 229-3477 or send an email to [email protected]last_img read more

Colombian Drug Dealer ‘Fritanga’ Awaits Extradition to United States

first_imgBy Dialogo October 15, 2012 BOGOTÁ — Colombians can’t stop talking about the contrasting lifestyles of two prominent drug traffickers who went to great lengths in order to conceal their identities — but got caught anyway. Daniel Barrera, known as “El Loco,” or The Crazy One, ranked among the world’s most wanted drug traffickers. He kept a very low profile in Venezuela and had even tried to erase his fingerprints by burning them in acid to confuse authorities. On the other extreme, Camilo Torres enjoyed the good life and flaunted his wealth. He successfully faked his own death but later gave himself away by throwing an over-the-top wedding party on a Caribbean island. Torres now sits in a cramped prison cell in northern Colombia awaiting extradition to the United States on drug charges. “The guy is all set to be extradited, a spokesman for the Colombian Attorney General’s office told Diálogo. “He has been notified.” A high-ranking member of the Urabeños drug trafficking organization, Torres was known as “Fritanga,” or Fry-up, for his custom of entertaining guests with huge platters of fried meats, a Colombian specialty known as fritanga. On July 1, Colombian police raided Torres’ wedding party held at the Punta Faro Hotel, located the island of Múcura in the Gulf of Morosquillo. The region is notorious for the constant stream of drug-laden vessels departing for Central America. Hotel raid marked Fritanga’s second arrest since 2008 The luxury hotel — where rooms cost between $300 and $700 a night — sits near an abandoned mansion that once belonged to Salvatore Mancuso, a former paramilitary strongman extradited to the United States in 2008. Paramilitaries kidnapped nine people from the island in 2000. According to one source, the Punta Faro’s owners at first had no clue they were hosting the wedding party of a drug trafficker. Torres and his bride-to-be had stayed at the hotel twice before and seemed like a normal couple. But by the third day of the wedding, the hotel was jammed with big-name musicians, TV actors and prostitutes among the more than 200 guests — and the owners began to suspect something was amiss. Torres had paid half the hotel and wedding charges in advance, but the owners were left stuck with the rest of the bill after the drug dealer was hauled away in handcuffs. It was the second time Torres had been arrested. In 2008 he was detained on narcotics charges but later was released. He then fell off the radar after he faked his death in 2010 by convincing a doctor to forge a death certificate. It now turns out that the doctor, Augusto Gallego, who was captured Aug. 7, may have helped at least two other drug traffickers and paramilitary leaders fake their own deaths to avoid capture. Faking death a popular tactic among drug kingpins In fact, the Bogotá think tank Insight Crime says pretending to be dead is one of the best ways for traffickers to avoid detection. After the former head of Mexico’s Juárez cartel, Amado Carrillo Fuentes, died during a botched plastic surgery operation in 1997, many Mexicans believed that the kingpin had staged his own death and was still at large. More recently, Insight Crime noted, some experts have posited that alias “El Chayo,” the leader of the Familia Michoacana drug cartel, might have faked his death too. He was killed in a shootout with Mexican police in 2010 but his body was never found. Though there’s no proof, there is speculation that “El Chayo” may have simulated his death in order to clandestinely assume control of the Knights Templar cartel. Faking death worked for Fritanga as well — until he gave himself away on his wedding night. By contrast, Barrera, known as El Loco for his violent mood swings, tried to confuse Colombian authorities by changing his identity. He had worked with both FARC guerrillas and paramilitaries over the past 20 years to build up a huge drug-trafficking network in Colombia. Local press reports say Barrera amputated the right finger of one of his dead brothers in order to legalize financial and commercial documents without being detected. But as law enforcement officials closed in in the late 2000s, he moved across the border to Venezuela. Barrera kept a low profile in Venezuela Unlike Torres, Barrera assumed a modest lifestyle during his time in Venezuela. He passed himself off at a local rancher and often stayed at a cheap guesthouse in the border city of San Cristóbal, which is also the birthplace of Ilich Ramirez Sánchez, the terrorist known as Carlos the Jackal. Barrera eschewed bodyguards and instead moved around with a female companion who doubled as his driver. He also used pay phones rather than mobile phones. According to Colombian police, Barrera had had extensive facial surgery and had shed many pounds in order to change his appearance. He even tried to burn off his fingerprints with acid in a frying pan. “He was very gracious and kept to himself,” a guesthouse employee told London’s Daily Telegraph newspaper. “He was a generous tipper and did not want to be bothered. We had noticed the marks on his hands, but never imagined he had deliberately burned himself.” Barrera’s disappearing act came to an end in September when Colombian authorities detected his presence in San Cristóbal and alerted Venezuelan authorities. They proceeded to tap 69 public phones which Barrera was thought to use to contact his businesses associates and family, said Venezuelan Interior Minister Tarek el Aissami. Venezuelan authorities arrested Barrera on Sep. 18 as he was speaking from a pay phone. At the time of his capture, he was carrying a false Colombian ID in the name of José Tomás Lucumi Popo. Afterwards, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos hailed the downfall of Barrera, calling him “the last of the great capos.” In both cases even though they have tried to evade justice, they were captured because of their own errors. The intelligence of our police is definitely #1 The real truth is that these two players, Fritanga and El Loco are first division and we have to praise them and let them enjoy but well quiet, total they are not immortal and now in a prison they are much more dangerous because they have too much time to think, to organize and to carry out what they want. Also with this is achieved something that benefits society. I think that we that work and put the shoulder to the heavy burden of doing things the legal way, we do benefit at all and those living off this will not abandon their activities. On the contrary, by having less strong competition they will strengthen. Let us stop fucking with drugs, space travel, succulent salaries and let´s try that many people that is fighting every day live better. Greetings from Uruguay, from a worker that works 16 hours per day as a baker and is always struggling to stay afloat. If human beings were more equitable regarding the distribution of economic wealth and each household could get decent housing, stable employment and be well paid in order to be able to meet the primary needs of their maintenance, in addition to a good education and effective coverage of health services, no one would have to be devoted to drug trafficking or to any illegal activity. I can assure you that. Learn to raise the child, so that you don’t have to punish the adult! Whatever they say, the world is rotten because of the vices of corrupt humanity and respect for others. This world won´t change because of the double standard of human beings. In spite of everything it is necessary to depurate the armed forces so that all corrupts be taken out. This is why there are still many narcos loose in the street doing evil to humanity and creating their own clan of richness. amimope The world is rotten because of politicians who are some scourges of shit. That´s why we are as we are, not only as result of drugs but because politicians seek that the world becomes so ugly. What can a system produce when it is in decline and therefore its social diseases manifest forcefully? The system itself is a factory of criminals, some fall and others appear; a large vicious circle until the end of capitalism. There is not a big difference between these two criminals and the mother-in-law of queen Valery Dominguez that pays an annual tax of $58.000 pesos for an estate of 777 acres in Ginebra, Valle del Cauca. (Daniel Coronel) Well it is true, if wealth was not so badly distributed and if we were not so ambitious, many things could be avoided. For example these people who work for the capos do so because they like the easy life and others do it because of their ignorance. Capos are clever, they know the need of common man and take advantage of that, because a person with his senses and no pressure, with a normal lifestyle and above all intelligent, is not going to be involved in something they know that the only way to escape from is by death or jail…But while there are more ignorant people like drug addicts there will always be people dedicated to drug trafficking. As they say, if there is demand there must be production. What bullshit, while they kill themselves consuming crap the others become millionaires… That is life: the smartest ones live from the more stupid ones… Write it down, gentlemen… The problem of organized crime is part of the status quo that is directed by secret societies for humanity’s evil, but it is also true that many myths will fall without these actors. Like who or how many protect these pranes (prisoners that hold power in jail) of drug trafficking. For them it is good to live and to die in different confrontations between States, as did U.S. in Iran Gate and might be doing in other countries for the benefit of big gangster who make life in different countries with their tax havens and others that protect and finance terrorists for well-being of the world gangsters. There is only one truth in our country and it is that all our social crisis are due to nothing more or less than our rulers and corrupt politicians who since long before many of us were born had already bled our country. These inhumane people with so many amenities, earning million, with their house or houses, with estates (where the lands are wasted), trucks, many connected to big business emporiums, I don’t know how they are always thinking of stealing, bleeding a town with so many needs. They have not understood that in our world all are one and that we want it or not, everyone has a connection, and that what we do in the time sooner or later is going to be reflected in our society, in our families, in our streets, neighborhoods, cities, in our country, in our nature, in the life of each of us. There are times that I think that this situation does not have a solution, but no, we must not fall into this trap, we cannot lose the hopes of living in a better world. I make a call that each of us use this tool that is the Internet to send messages that with the passing of time reach the right people that make the big decisions in our country and make dent in the awareness of them and each one of us. That is the life of the ignorant. They do not know how to use what they get 35318 Fritanga and El Loco COLOMBIANS: in order to exterminate the evil that our country has, the following have to be eradicated: corrupt politicians, military, public employees and many more. How is it possible that our people continue to believe in all these so-called Parents of the Fatherland that continue cheating all the Colombian people. From my heart I ask that during the next elections we cast a blank vote, to see what the wrongly called Parents of the Fatherland do. LONG LIVE THE BLANK VOTE IN UPCOMING ELECTIONS. Why do they want so much money? If money allowed me to live for centuries like vampires, I would think about it. the truth is that these drug dealers are the bi-product of a failed system, where the last government received so many bribes, we don’t know the extent of it; sending these people to the united states is the best solution, and not having them in these medium-security prisons; they will only cause more issues in whatever cities they are sent to. In Colombia, injustice and concentration of wealth in few hands are the daily agenda. The illusion of easy money: corrupt politicians in the Congress set the example, and corruption, widespread to all control agencies, fill many Colombians with hope. in order to put an end to corruption in this country… we would have to bring at least one hundred of these corrupt people who have been forever in the government and other branches, as well as in the corrupt, stealing higher classes TO JUSTICE AND TAKE AWAY THE MEMBERS OF THOSE WHO KEEP STEALING… THE REST WOULD SHIT THEMSELVES OF FEAR AND WILL RUN AWAY… MY IDEA IS MAGNIFICENT, ISN’T IT? WHAT HAPPENS IS THAT WITH PEOPLE SUCH AS OURS, WITH NO DIGNITY OR SELF-ESTEEM, SUBMISSIVE AND ON ITS KNEES, AND ON TOP OF THAT COWARDS THAT ARE GOOD FOR NOTHING BUT TO RAPE MINORS AND ABUSE WOMEN… WE WILL NEVER, EVER PUT AN END TO THIS, I ASSURE YOU. AWARENESS, MY PEOPLE, AWARENESS… In the past Colombia didn’t care about a territory that did not belong to it, it belonged to Ecuador. Because of all that happened in those departments, they lost control of things, now they want to raise awareness after turning many policemen and military men into New Rich. the blank vote is not the solution, because those who will vote will be the same individuals or relatives that receive privileges from these unscrupulous corrupt white-collar people that have been in power for years, counting the same old 20 votes to stay in power. We need to change and name new people, watch them closely and apply the law fully, without exception. Also, someone put an end to the civil and penal law, because the civil one is for the rich, and the penal for those without means. thieves………… congratulations…..last_img read more