Friday, November 30, 2007

You may be looking for the God-Emperor from the game Warhammer 40,000.
God Emperor of Dune is a science fiction novel by Frank Herbert published in 1981, the fourth in the Dune series.
3,500 years have passed since Paul Atreides became the messiah of the Fremen and the Emperor of the universe. His son, Leto Atreides II, sees the path that his father Muad'Dib also saw, a future that secures the continuation of human life throughout the universe. That future, however, requires an aberrant act of selflessness: becoming a hybrid of man and sandworm. Leto II accepts this mantle of godhead from the Fremen and transforms himself into a monster of the desert, a sandworm, that will dominate the ecology of the planet Arrakis (known as Dune) for millennia. This is an act his father had been unwilling to do. Leto essentially accepts the terrible price of saving humanity which his father rejected. The novel records Leto II's attempts to consummate the Golden Path, which delivers the volition of humanity by scattering it beyond the perceived safety of Imperium's known universe, and also by destroying the possibility of the Imperium's control by any single entity, including himself.
Stylistically, the novel is permeated by quotations from, and speeches by its main character, Leto, to a degree unseen in any of the other Dune novels. In part, this stylistic shift is an artifact of how Herbert wrote it: the first draft was written almost entirely in the First-person narrative voice, only being revised in later drafts to insert more third-person narration of events.

God Emperor of Dune Notable parody

Touponce, William F. (1988), Frank Herbert, Boston, Massachusetts: Twayne Publishers imprint, G. K. Hall & Co, ISBN 0-8057-7514-5; PS3558.E63Z89

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (also known as The Charter of Rights and Freedoms or simply The Charter) is a bill of rights entrenched in the Constitution of Canada. It forms the first part of the Constitution Act, 1982. The Charter guarantees certain political and civil rights of people in Canada from the policies and actions of all levels of government. It is designed to unify Canadians around a set of principles that embody those rights.
The Charter was preceded by the Canadian Bill of Rights, which was enacted in 1960. However, the Bill of Rights was only a federal statute, rather than a constitutional document. As a federal statute, it was limited in scope, it was easily amendable by Parliament and it had no application to provincial laws. The Supreme Court of Canada also narrowly interpreted the Bill of Rights and the Court was reluctant to declare laws inoperative. The British Parliament formally enacted the Charter as a part of the Canada Act 1982 at the request of the Parliament of Canada in 1982, the result of the efforts of the Government of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau.
One of the most notable effects of the adoption of the Charter was to greatly expand the scope of judicial review, because the Charter is more explicit with respect to the guarantee of rights and the role of judges in enforcing them than was the Bill of Rights. The courts, when confronted with violations of Charter rights, have struck down unconstitutional federal and provincial statutes and regulations or parts of statutes and regulations, as they did when Canadian case law was primarily concerned with resolving issues of federalism. However, the Charter granted new powers to the courts to enforce remedies that are more creative and to exclude more evidence in trials. These powers are greater than what was typical under the common law and under a system of government that, influenced by Canada's mother country the United Kingdom, was based upon Parliamentary supremacy. As a result, the Charter has attracted both broad support from a majority of the Canadian electorate and criticisms by opponents of increased judicial power. The Charter only applies to government laws and actions (including the laws and actions of federal, provincial, and municipal governments and public school boards), and sometimes to the common law, not to private activity.

Many of the rights and freedoms that are protected under the Charter, including the rights to freedom of speech, habeas corpus and the presumption of innocence,

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms History
The task of interpreting and enforcing the Charter falls to the courts, with the Supreme Court of Canada being the ultimate authority on the matter.
With the Charter's supremacy confirmed by section 52 of the Constitution Act, 1982, the courts continued their practice of striking down unconstitutional statutes or parts of statutes as they had with earlier case law regarding federalism. However, under section 24 of the Charter, courts also gained new powers to enforce creative remedies and exclude more evidence in trials. Courts have since made many important decisions, including R. v. Morgentaler (1988), which struck down Canada's abortion law, and Vriend v. Alberta (1998), in which the Supreme Court found the province's exclusion of homosexuals from protection against discrimination violated section 15. In the latter case, the Court then read the protection into the law.
Courts may receive Charter questions in a number of ways. Rights claimants could be prosecuted under a criminal law that they argue is unconstitutional. Others may feel government services and policies are not being dispensed in accordance with the Charter, and apply to lower-level courts for injunctions against the government (as was the case in Doucet-Boudreau v. Nova Scotia (Minister of Education)). A government may also raise questions of rights by submitting reference questions to higher-level courts; for example, Prime Minister Paul Martin's government approached the Supreme Court with Charter questions as well as federalism concerns in the case Re Same-Sex Marriage (2004). Provinces may also do this with their superior courts. The government of Prince Edward Island initiated the Provincial Judges Reference by asking its provincial Supreme Court a question on judicial independence under section 11.
In several important cases, judges developed various tests and precedents for interpreting specific provisions of the Charter. These include the Oakes test for section 1, set out in the case R. v. Oakes (1986), and the Law test for section 15, developed in Law v. Canada (1999). Since Re B.C. Motor Vehicle Act (1985), various approaches to defining and expanding the scope of fundamental justice (the Canadian name for natural justice or due process) under section 7 have been adopted. (For more information, see the articles on each Charter section).
In general, courts have embraced a purposive interpretation of Charter rights. This means that since early cases like Hunter v. Southam (1984) and R. v. Big M Drug Mart (1985), they have concentrated not on the traditional, limited understanding of what each right meant when the Charter was adopted in 1982, but rather on changing the scope of rights as appropriate to fit their broader purpose. This is tied to the generous interpretation of rights, as the purpose of the Charter provisions is assumed to be to increase rights and freedoms of people in a variety of circumstances, at the expense of the government powers. Constitutional scholar Peter Hogg has approved of the generous approach in some cases, although for others he argues the purpose of the provisions was not to achieve a set of rights as broad as courts have imagined.
Public interest groups frequently intervene in cases to make arguments on how to interpret the Charter. Some examples are the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the Canadian Mental Health Association, the Canadian Labour Congress, the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF), and REAL Women of Canada. The purpose of such interventions is to assist the court and to attempt to influence the court to render a decision favourable to the legal interests of the group.
A further approach to the Charter, taken by the courts, is the dialogue principle, which involves greater participation by elected governments. This approach involves governments drafting legislation in response to court rulings and courts acknowledging the effort if the new legislation is challenged.

Interpretation and enforcement
Some Canadian Members of Parliament saw the movement to entrench a charter as contrary to the British model of Parliamentary supremacy. Others would say that the European Convention on Human Rights has now limited British parliamentary power to a greater degree than the Canadian Charter limited the power of the Canadian Parliament and provincial legislatures. Hogg has speculated that the British adopted the European Convention partly because they were inspired by the similar Canadian Charter.

Comparisons with other human rights instruments
The Charter was intended to be a source for national values and national unity. As Professor Alan Cairns noted, "The initial federal government premise was on developing a pan-Canadian identity."

The Charter and national values
While the Charter has enjoyed a great deal of popularity, with 82% of Canadians describing it as a "good thing" in opinion polls in 1987 and 1999,

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Hank Aaron Stadium
Hank Aaron Stadium is a baseball stadium in Mobile, Alabama, United States. It hosts the Mobile BayBears, a minor-league professional team in the Southern League. The stadium, which opened in 1997, has a capacity of 4,000. The ballpark was named after Major League Baseball's all-time home run king and Mobile native Hank Aaron.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

"The Adventure of the Copper Beeches", one of the 56 short Sherlock Holmes stories written by British author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and the last of the twelve collected in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. It was first published in Strand Magazine in June 1892.

The Adventure of the Copper BeechesThe Adventure of the Copper Beeches Synopsis
Violet Hunter asks Holmes whether to accept a job as governess, with very strange conditions. She is enticed by the phenomenal salary which, as originally offered, is £100 a year, later increased to £120 when Miss Hunter balks at having to cut her long hair off, which is one of many peculiar provisos to which she must agree. The employer, Jephro Rucastle, seems pleasant enough, yet Miss Hunter obviously has her suspicions.
She announces to Holmes, after the raised salary offer, that she will take the job, and Holmes suggests that if he is needed, a telegram will bring him to Hampshire, where Mr. Rucastle's country estate, the Copper Beeches, is situated.
In about a fortnight, Holmes receives such a message, beseeching him to come and see her in Winchester. Once Holmes and Watson arrive, Miss Hunter tells them one of the most singular stories that they have ever heard. Mr. Rucastle would sometimes have Miss Hunter wear an electric blue dress and sit in the front room reading, with her back to the front window. She began to suspect that she was not supposed to see something outside the window, and a small mirror shard hidden in her handkerchief showed her that she was right: there was a man standing there on the road looking towards the house.
At another such session, Mr. Rucastle told a series of funny stories that made Miss Hunter laugh until she was quite weary. The one astonishing thing about this was that Mrs. Rucastle not only didn't laugh, but didn't even smile.
There were other unsavoury things about the household. The six-year-old child that she was supposed to look after was astonishingly cruel to small animals. The servants, Mr. and Mrs. Toller, were quite a sour pair. A great mastiff was kept on the property, and always kept hungry. It was let out to prowl the grounds at night and Miss Hunter was warned not to cross the threshold after dark. Also, Toller, who was quite often drunk, was the only one who had any influence over this brute.
There was also the odd discovery by Miss Hunter of her own tresses in a locked drawer. Upon checking her own luggage, however, they turned out to be another woman's, but identical in every way to Miss Hunter's, even to the unusual colour.
However, the most unsavoury thing of all about the household was the mystery wing. Miss Hunter had observed that there was a part of the house that did not seem to be used. The windows were either dirty or shuttered, and once she saw Mr. Rucastle coming out of the door leading into the wing looking most perturbed. Later, he explained that he used the rooms for his photography hobby, but Miss Hunter was not convinced.
She sneaked into the wing one evening, and had a truly frightening experience there. She thought she saw someone. Running out of the room, she found herself right in Mr. Rucastle's clutches. He seemed convinced that she had seen nothing of the prisoner in the forbidden wing. He also threatened to throw her to the mastiff if she ever went into the wing again.
It seems clear to Holmes that Miss Hunter has been hired to impersonate someone who looks very much like her, and he surmises quite reasonably that it is probably Mr. Rucastle's daughter by his first marriage, Alice. The story has been that she moved to Philadelphia. Holmes further surmises that the man watching the house is likely Alice's lover, or perhaps even her fiancé. The purpose of hiring Miss Hunter seems clear: she is to convince the man watching from the road that Alice is no longer interested in seeing him.
Holmes and Watson send Miss Hunter back to the Copper Beeches with certain instructions, and then arrive there in the evening with the intent of searching the forbidden wing. Holmes turns out to be right in most of his deductions, but the wing is empty. Someone has been there before him. Mr. Rucastle shows up as well, and in his anger, lets the mastiff loose, which has not been fed in two days (for Toller has been quite drunk). The mastiff attacks Rucastle. Even though he survives, Rucastle is a broken man, having paid hard for his evil intentions.
Rucastle's daughter has escaped with her fiance, and they marry soon after. Watson notes, at the end of the story, that Holmes appears to have been drawn to Miss Hunter. However, to his disappointment, Holmes does not show any interest in Miss Hunter after the mystery had been solved, which was the real force behind his feelings.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Second Opium War or Arrow War was a war of the United Kingdom and France against the Qing Dynasty of China from 1856 to 1860.

The war may be viewed as a continuation of the First Opium War (1839-1842), thus the title of the Second Opium War.
On 1856-10-08, Qing officials boarded the Arrow, a Chinese-owned ship that had been registered in Hong Kong and was suspected of piracy and smuggling. Twelve Chinese subjects were arrested and imprisoned. The British officials in Guangzhou demanded the release of the sailors, claiming that because the ship had recently been British-registered, it was protected under the Treaty of Nanjing. Only when this was shown to be a weak argument did the British insist that the Arrow had been flying a British ensign and that the Qing soldiers had insulted the flag. Faced with fighting the Taiping Rebellion, the Qing government was in no position to resist the West militarily. This has come to be known as the "Arrow Incident".
The British Parliament decided to seek redress from China based on the report about the "Arrow Incident" submitted by Harry Parkes, British Consul to Guangzhou. France, the USA, and Russia received requests from Britain to form an alliance. France joined the British action against China, prompted by the execution of a French missionary, Father August Chapdelaine ("Father Chapdelaine Incident"), by Chinese local authorities in Guangxi province. The USA and Russia sent envoys to Hong Kong to offer help to the British and French, though in the end they sent no military aid.
The British and the French joined forces under Admiral Sir Michael Seymour. The British army led by Lord Elgin, and the French army led by Gros, attacked and occupied Guangzhou in late 1857. Ye Mingchen was captured, and Bo-gui, the governor of Guangdong, surrendered. A joint committee of the Alliance was formed. Bo-gui remained at his original post in order to maintain order on behalf of the victors. The British-French Alliance maintained control of Guangzhou for nearly four years. Ye Mingchen was exiled to Calcutta, India, where he starved himself to death.
The coalition then cruised north to briefly capture the Taku Forts near Tianjin in May, 1858.

Second Opium War Outbreak
In June 1858 the first part of the war ended with the Treaties of Tianjin, to which France, Russia, and the United States were party. These treaties opened eleven more ports to Western trade. The Chinese initially refused to ratify the treaties.
The major points of the treaty were:

Britain, France, Russia, and the United States would have the right to establish diplomatic legations (small embassies) in Peking (a closed city at the time)
Ten more Chinese ports would be opened for foreign trade, including Niuzhuang, Danshui, Hankou, and Nanjing
The right of all foreign vessels including commercial ships to navigate freely on the Yangtze River
The right of foreigners to travel in the internal regions of China, which had been formerly banned
China was to pay an indemnity to Britain and France in 2 million taels of silver each
China was to pay compensation to British merchants in 2 million taels of silver for destruction of their property Treaty of Aigun
In June 1858, shortly after the Qing Court agreed to the humiliating treaties, more hawkish ministers prevailed upon the Xianfeng Emperor to resist encroachment by the West. On June 2, 1858, the Xianfeng Emperor ordered the Mongolian general Sengge Rinchen to guard the Dagu Fort in Tianjin. Sengge Richen reinforced the Dagu Forts with added artillery. He also brought 4,000 Mongolian cavalry from Chahar and Suiyuan.
In June, 1859, a British naval force with 2,200 troops and 21 ships, under the command of Admiral Sir James Hope sailed north from Shanghai to Tianjin with newly-appointed Anglo-French envoys for the embassies in Beijing. They sailed to the mouth of the Hai River guarded by the Dagu Fort near Tianjin and demanded to continue inland to Beijing. Sengge Rinchen replied that the Anglo-French envoys may land up the coast at Beitang and proceed to Beijing but refused to allow armed troops to accompany them to the Chinese capital. The Anglo-French forces insisted landing at Dagu instead of Beitang and escorting the envoy to Beijing. On the night of June 24, 1859, a small batch of British forces blew up iron obstacles that the Chinese had placed in the Baihe River. The next day, the British forces sought to forcibly sail into the river, and shelled Dagu Fort. They encountered fierce resistance from Singge Rinchen's positions. After one day and one night's fighting, four gunboats were lost and two others severely damaged. The convoy withdrew under the cover of fire from a naval squadron commanded by Commodore Josiah Tattnall. Tattnall's intervention violated U.S. neutrality in China. For a time, anti-foreign resistance reached a crescendo within the Qing Court.
In the summer of 1860, a larger Anglo-French force (11,000 British, 6,700 French) with 173 ships sailed from Hong Kong and captured the port cities of Yantai and Dalian to seal the Bohai Gulf. Then they carried out a landing near at Bei Tang(also spelled Pei Tang), some 3 kilometres (2 mi) from the Dagu Fort on August 3, which they captured after three weeks' on August 21. After taking Tienstin on August 3, the Anglo-French forces marched inland toward Beijing. The Xianfeng Emperor then dispatched ministers to for peace talks, but relations broke down completely when a British diplomatic envoy, Harry Parkes, was arrested during negotiations on September 18. He and his small entourage were imprisoned and tortured (some were murdered by the Chinese in a fashion that infuriated British leadership upon discovery in October). The Anglo-French invasion clashed with Singge Rinchen's Mongolian cavalry on September 18 near Zhangjiawan before proceeding toward the outskirts of Beijing for a decisive battle in Tongzhou District. At Baliqiao, Sengge Rinchen's 10,000 troops including elite Mongolian cavalry were completely annhilated after several doomed frontal charges against concentrated firepower of the Anglo-French forces, which entered Beijing on October 6.
With the Qing army devastated, Emperor Xianfeng fled the capital, leaving his brother, Prince Gong, to be in charge of negotiations. Xianfeng first fled to the Summer Palace in Chengde and then to Jehol in Manchuria., as it was his own father, Thomas Bruce (1776–1841), who, from 1799 to 1803, removed from the Acropolis in Greece what are now known as the Elgin Marbles to Britain, where they remain to this day, a subject of rancor between the Greek and British governments.

Continuation of the war
After the Xianfeng emperor and his entourage fled Beijing, the June 1858 Treaty of Tianjin was finally ratified by the emperor's brother, Yixin, the Prince Gong, in the Convention of Peking on October 18, 1860, bringing The Second Opium War to an end.
The British, French and - thanks to the schemes of Ignatiev - the Russians were all granted a permanent diplomatic presence in Beijing (something the Qing resisted to the very end as it suggested equality between China and the European powers). The Chinese had to pay 8 million taels to Britain and France. Britain acquired Kowloon (next to Hong Kong). The opium trade was legalized and Christians were granted full civil rights, including the right to own property, and the right to evangelize.
The content of the Convention of Peking included:
Two weeks later, Ignatiev convinced the Manchu to sign a "Supplementary Treaty of Peking", in which the Manchu signed away some 300,000 to 400,000 square miles (777,000–1,036,000 km²) of land to the Russians. The defeat of the Imperial army by a small Anglo-French military force (outnumbered at least 10 to 1 by the Manchu army) coupled with the flight (and subsequent death) of the Emperor and the burning of the Summer Palace was a shocking blow to the once powerful Qing Dynasty. "Beyond any doubt, by 1860 the ancient civilization that was China had been thoroughly defeated and humiliated by the West."

China's recognition of the validity of the Treaty of Tianjin
Opening Tianjin as a trade port
Cede No.1 District of Kowloon (south of present day Boundary Street) to Britain
Freedom of religion established in China
British ships were allowed to carry indentured Chinese to the Americas
Indemnity to Britain and France increasing to 8 million taels of silver a piece
Legalization of the opium trade Second Opium War Further reading

Fraser, George MacDonald (1986). Flashman and the Dragon. New York, NY: Knopf. ISBN 0-394-55357-8.  — A portion of the memoirs of the fictional Harry Paget Flashman recounting his adventures during the Second Opium War and Taiping Rebellion.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Royal Academy does not receive financial support from the state or crown. One of its principal sources of revenue is hosting temporary public art exhibitions. These are of the highest quality, comparable to those at the National Gallery, the Tate Gallery and leading art galleries outside the United Kingdom. In 2004 the highlights of the Academy's permanent collection went on display in the newly restored reception rooms of the original section of Burlington House, which are now known as the "John Madejski Fine Rooms".
Under the Direction of the Exhibitions Secretary Norman Rosenthal the Academy has hosted ambitious exhibitions of contemporary art including in 1997 "Sensation" the collection of work by young British Artists owned by Charles Saatchi. The show created controversy for including a painting of Myra Hindley that was vandalised while on display.
The Academy also hosts an annual Royal Academy summer exhibition of new art, which is a well known event on the London social calendar. It is not as fashionable as was the case in earlier centuries, and has been largely ignored by the trendy Brit Artists and their patrons; however Tracey Emin exhibited in the 2005 show. In March 2007 this relationship developed further when Tracey Emin accepted the Academy's invitation to become a Royal Academician, commenting in her weekly newspaper column that, "It doesn't mean that I have become more conformist; it means that the Royal Academy has become more open, which is healthy and brilliant."
The Academy has received many gifts and bequests of objects and money. Many of these gifts were used to establish Trust Funds to support the work of the Royal Academy Schools by providing "Premiums" to students displaying excellence in various artistic genre. The rapid changes that pulsed through 20th century art have left some of the older prize funds looking somewhat anachronistic. But efforts are still made to award each prize to a student producing work that bears a relation to the intentions of the original benefactor.

The Academy runs a postgraduate art school and a research library. The Royal Academy Schools, the country's oldest art school, is based in Burlington House. There are generally two exhibitions every year of work by Academy students.

Royal Academy Schools
Full membership of the academy is limited to 80 Academicians or "RAs", who may be painters, printmakers, sculptors, or architects, and must be "professionally active in Britain".
The Academy's rules are that there must always be at least 14 sculptors, 12 architects, and 8 printmakers; the balance being made up of 46 painters. New Academicians are elected by the existing RAs, and originally had to enter a Diploma Work representative of their œuvre.
Apart from kudos of being elected, full members of the Academy may expect to serve for a time on the governing council of the Academy, and to take part in various committees. Each room in the Summer Exhibition is generally hung by a different R.A.
In common with certain other Royal societies, election as President of the Royal Academy (P.R.A.) practically guarantees a knighthood, if the President is not already of that rank.
A larger number of Associates of the Royal Academy (designated "A.R.A.") are also elected, but being an A.R.A. is not a prerequisite to full membership.
Members of the public can also join the Royal Academy as "Friends" by making a financial donation; outside of public exhibitions, this is one of the RA's main sources of income.

Royal Academy Membership
(incomplete list)

Richard Ansdell
Francesco Bartolozzi (1768)
Agostino Carlini (1768)
Mason Chamberlin (1768)
Sir William Chambers (1768)
Giovanni Battista Cipriani (1768)
Richard Cosway (1768)
Francis Cotes (1768)
George Dance the Younger (1768; Academy professor of architecture 1798-1805)
Nathaniel Dance-Holland (1768)
Thomas Gainsborough (1768)
John Gwynn (1768)
Francis Hayman (1768; 1st Academy librarian)
Nathaniel Hone (1768)
William Hunter (1768; 1st Academy professor of anatomy)
Angelica Kauffmann (1768)
George Michael Moser (1768; 1st Academy Keeper)
Mary Moser (1768)
Joseph Nollekens (1768)
Thomas Pingo (1768)
Sir Joshua Reynolds (1768; President 1768–1792)
John Inigo Richards (1768; Academy secretary 1788–1810)
Paul Sandby (1768)
Thomas Sandby (1768; 1st Academy professor of architecture)
Dominic Serres (1768; Academy librarian 1792–1793)
Benjamin West (1768; President 1792–1805, 1806–1820)
Richard Wilson (1768)
Joseph Wilton (1768; 3rd Academy Keeper)
Johann Zoffany (1768)
Francesco Zuccarelli (1768)
Thomas Hardwick (1768-69) (silver medal winner)
Philip James de Loutherbourg (1781)
Joseph Wright (1784)
Thomas Banks (1785)
James Northcote (1787)
John Opie (1788)
John Russell (1788)
Henry Fuseli (1790; Academy professor of painting 1799–1803, 1810–1824; Academy Keeper 1803–1810?)
Ozias Humphrey (1791)
Robert Smirke (1793)
Thomas Kirk (1794)
Sir Thomas Lawrence (1794; President 1820–1830)
Richard Westall (1794)
Thomas Stothard (1794)
John Hoppner (1795)
John Flaxman (1800; Professor of Sculpture 1810–1826)
Martin Archer Shee (1800; President 1830–1850)
Sir John Soane (1802; Academy professor of architecture 1806–1837)
J. M. W. Turner (1802)
Thomas Phillips (1808; Academy professor of painting 1824–1832)
David Wilkie (1811)
Sir Richard Westmacott (1811; Professor of Sculpture 1827–1856)
Robert Smirke (1811)
William Theed (1813)
John Jackson (1817)
Edward Hodges Baily (1821)
Sir Charles Lock Eastlake (1827; President 1850–1865)
John Constable (1829)
Edwin Henry Landseer (1831)
William Clarkson Stanfield (1835)
Frederick Richard Lee (1838)
Daniel Maclise (1840)
David Roberts (1841)
William Dyce (1848)
Richard Westmacott (1849; Professor of Sculpture 1857–1868)
Sir Francis Grant (1851)
Richard Redgrave (1851)
William Powell Frith (1852)
Sydney Smirke (1859; Academy professor of architecture 1860–1865)
John Everett Millais (1863; President 1896)
Thomas Sidney Cooper (1867)
Edward Middleton Barry (1869)
James Sant (1869)
Edward Armitage (1872)
Thomas Woolner (1875; professor of sculpture 1877–1879)
Edward Poynter (1876; President 1896–1918)
William Quiller Orchardson (1877)
Henry Hugh Armstead (1880)
Edwin Long (1881)
Alfred Waterhouse (1885)
Sir Thomas Graham Jackson (1892) architect
John William Waterhouse (1895)
George Frederic Watts (1897)
Edwin Austin Abbey (1898)
Benjamin Williams Leader (1898)
Albert Chevallier Tayler (1899?)
Sir Aston Webb (1903)
Sir George Clausen (1906)
William Lionel Wyllie (1907)
James Jebusa Shannon (1909)
Henry Scott Tuke (1914)
Edwin Landseer Lutyens (1921)
Augustus John (1928)
Sir William Reid Dick (1928)
George Spencer Watson (1932)
Wilfrid de Glehn (1932)
Sir William Russell Flint (1933)
Francis Dodd (1935)
Laura Knight (1936)
Harold Knight (1937)
Vincent Harris (1942)
John Aldridge 1963
William Roberts (1966)
Eric Schilsky (1968)
Hugh Casson (1970)
Edward Ardizzone (1970)
Norman Adams (1972)
Fred Cuming (1974)
Bryan Kneale (1974)
Sir Kyffin Williams (1974)
Olwyn Bowey (1975)
Elizabeth Blackadder (1976)
Anthony Green (1977)
Eduardo Paolozzi (1979)
David Tindle (1979)
Peter Blake (1981)
William Bowyer (1981)
Tom Phillips (1984)
Donald Hamilton Fraser (1985)
Michael Kenny (1986)
Norman Ackroyd (1988)
Craigie Aitchison (1988)
Ann Christopher (1989)
Gillian Ayres (1991)
John Bellany (1991)
Kenneth Draper (1991)
David Hockney (1991)
Bill Jacklin (1991)
R B Kitaj (1991)
Joe Tilson (1991)
Sir Terry Frost (1992)
Brendan Neiland (1992)
Sir Nicholas Grimshaw (1994)
Christopher Orr (1995)
Patrick Procktor (1996)
Eva Jiřičná (1997)
Alison Wilding (1999)
Maurice Cockrill (1999)
David Nash (1999)
Gary Hume (2001)
Ian McKeever (2003)
Tracey Emin (2007)
Tony Bevan (2007) List of RAs

Other posts

The Arts Club
Royal West of England Academy

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Ian Hislop (born 13 July 1960) is the editor of British satirical magazine Private Eye, a team captain on the popular satirical current affairs quiz Have I Got News for You and a comedy scriptwriter.

Ian Hislop Early Life
As editor of Private Eye, Ian Hislop was once the most sued man in English legal history

Ian Hislop Private Eye
Hislop is the only person to have appeared in every episode of Have I Got News for You's 17-year history, despite suffering from appendicitis during one episode and having to go to hospital immediately afterwards. His satirical views and broad knowledge of politics complement the wry surrealism of fellow panellist Paul Merton, and this interaction contributes greatly to the success of the show. Hislop often suffixes potentially slanderous statements with "allegedly". This however provides no legal protection.
Apart from one episode, where Hislop and Merton swapped places (and dress styles), he has only ever sat in the far right seat (far left from the audience's point of view).

Personal Life
In Caroline Chartres's book "Why I am still an Anglican", Hislop describes himself as, "Atheist with Doubts: a C of E don't know". In 1996 he presented an award-winning documentary series for BBC Channel 4 about the history of the Church of England called "Canterbury Tales". Recent works include the Radio 4 series, "The Real Patron Saints".

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thackray Museum
The Thackray Museum in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England is a museum of the history of medicine. Since it opened in 1997 it has won "Museum of the Year" and other awards.
Highlights include Life in Victorian Leeds: visitors walk through a reproduction of slum streets complete with authentic sights, sounds and smells and are invited to follow the lives, ailments and treatments of eight Victorian characters, making the choices that determine their survival amongst the rats, fleas and bedbugs. Pain, pus and blood describes surgery before anaesthesia, and Having a baby focuses on developments in safety for childbirth. Hannah Dyson's ordeal is a reconstruction of 1842 surgery, before anaesthetics were in use: visitors watch as 11-year old Hannah undergoes amputation of her leg after it was crushed in a mill accident. The life zone is an interactive children's gallery. There are also temporary exhibition galleries.
The building is a Grade 2 listed building, a former workhouse adjacent to St James's Hospital.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Electric potential
Electric potential is the potential energy per unit of charge associated with a static (time-invariant) electric field, also called the electrostatic potential, typically measured in volts. It is a Lorentz scalar quantity. The difference of electrical potential between two points is known as voltage.
There is also a generalized electric scalar potential that is used in electrodynamics when time-varying electromagnetic fields are present. This generalized electric potential cannot be simply interpreted as a potential energy, however.

Objects may possess a property known as electric charge. An electric field exerts a force on charged objects, accelerating them in the direction of the force, in either the same or the opposite direction of the electric field. If the charged object has a positive charge, the force and acceleration will be in the direction of the field. This force has the same direction as the electric field vector, and its magnitude is given by the size of the charge multiplied with the magnitude of the electric field.
Classical mechanics explores the concepts such as force, energy, potential etc. in more detail.
Force and potential energy are directly related. As an object moves in the direction that the force accelerates it, its potential energy decreases. For example, the gravitational potential energy of a cannonball at the top of a hill is greater than at the base of the hill. As the object falls, that potential energy decreases and is translated to motion, or inertial (kinetic) energy.
For certain forces, it is possible to define the "potential" of a field such that the potential energy of an object due to a field is dependent only on the position of the object with respect to the field. Those forces must affect objects depending only on the intrinsic properties of the object and the position of the object, and obey certain other mathematical rules.
Two such forces are the gravitational force (gravity) and the electric force in the absence of time-varying magnetic fields. The potential of an electric field is called the electric potential.
The electric potential and the magnetic vector potential together form a four vector, so that the two kinds of potential are mixed under Lorentz transformations.

Mathematical introduction
When time-varying magnetic fields are present (which is true whenever there are time-varying electric fields and vice versa), one cannot describe the electric field simply in terms of a scalar potential φ because the electric field is no longer conservative: int mathbf{E}cdot mathrm{d}mathbf{S} is path-dependent because mathbf{nabla} times mathbf{E}neq 0.
Instead, one can still define a scalar potential by also including the magnetic vector potential mathbf{A}. In particular, mathbf{A} is defined by:
mathbf{B} = mathbf{nabla} times mathbf{A}
where mathbf{B} is the magnetic flux density. One can always find such an mathbf{A} because mathbf{nabla} cdot mathbf{B} = 0 (the absence of magnetic monopoles). Given this, the quantity mathbf{F} = mathbf{E} + partialmathbf{A}/partial t is a conservative field by Faraday's law and one can therefore write:
mathbf{E} = -mathbf{nabla}phi - frac{partialmathbf{A}}{partial t}
where φ is the scalar potential defined by the conservative field mathbf{F}.
The electrostatic potential is simply the special case of this definition where mathbf{A} is time-invariant. On the other hand, for time-varying fields, note that int_a^b mathbf{E} cdot mathrm{d}mathbf{S} neq phi(a) - phi(b), unlike electrostatics.
Note that this definition of φ depends on the gauge choice for the vector potential mathbf{A} (the gradient of any scalar field can be added to mathbf{A} without changing mathbf{B}). One choice is the Coulomb gauge, in which we choose mathbf{nabla} cdot mathbf{A} = 0. In this case, we obtain -nabla^2 phi = rho/varepsilon_0, where ρ is the charge density, just as for electrostatics. Another common choice is the Lorenz gauge, in which we choose mathbf{A} to satisfy mathbf{nabla} cdot mathbf{A} = - frac{1}{c^2} frac{partialphi}{partial t}.

Special cases and computational devices
This electric potential, typically measured in volts, provides a simple way to analyze electric circuits without requiring detailed knowledge of the circuit shape or the fields within it.
The electric potential provides a simple way to analyze electrical networks with the help of Kirchhoff's voltage law, without solving the detailed Maxwell's equations for the fields of the circuit.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Premiership of Tony Blair began on 2 May 1997 and ended on 27 June 2007. While serving as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Blair concurrently served as the First Lord of the Treasury, the Minister for the Civil Service, the Leader of the Labour Party (until Gordon Brown was declared Labour leader on 24 June 2007), and a Member of Parliament for the constituency of Sedgefield in County Durham. He remains a Privy Counsellor having first been appointed in July 1994 when he became Leader of the Opposition. Blair is the Labour Party's longest-serving Prime Minister, and having led the party to three consecutive general election victories, the only Labour Prime Minister to serve more than one full consecutive term.
Blair is both credited with and criticised for moving the Labour Party towards the centre of British politics, using the term "New Labour" to distinguish his pro-market policies from the more collectivist policies which the party had espoused in the past.
In domestic government policy, Blair has significantly increased public spending on health and education while also introducing controversial market-based reforms in these areas. Blair's tenure has also seen the introduction of a minimum wage, tuition fees for higher education, constitutional reform such as devolution in Scotland and Wales, and progress in the Northern Ireland peace process. The British economy performed well, Blair kept to Conservative commitments not to increase income tax in the first term although rates of Employee's National Insurance (a payroll levy) were increased, increasing taxation of wages.
Controversially, Blair strongly supported US foreign policy, notably by participating in the invasions of Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003.
On 7 September 2006 Blair publicly stated he would step down as party leader by the time of the TUC conference in September 2007. On 10 May 2007 he announced his intention to resign as Prime Minister on 27 June 2007.

First term 1997 to 2001
Immediately after taking office, Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown gave the Bank of England the power to set the UK base rate of interest autonomously, as agreed in 1992 in the Treaty of Maastricht. This decision was popular with the British financial establishment in London, which the Labour Party had been courting since the early 1990s. Together with the Government's decision to remain within projected Conservative spending limits for its first two years in office, it helped to reassure sceptics of the Labour Party's fiscal "prudence".

Independence for the Bank of England
In the early years of his first term, Blair relied for his political advice on a close circle of his staff, among whom his press secretary and official spokesman Alastair Campbell was seen as particularly influential. Controversially, Campbell was permitted to give orders to civil servants, who had previously taken instructions only from ministers. Unlike some of his predecessors, Campbell was a political appointee and had not come up through the Civil Service. Despite his overtly political role, he was paid from public funds as a civil servant. His was one of a number of New Labour appointments that gave rise to fears that the traditional political neutrality of the civil service was being eroded.
A significant achievement of Blair's first term was the signing, on 10 April 1998, of the Belfast Agreement, generally known as the Good Friday Agreement. Negotiations aimed at bringing peace to Northern Ireland had begun under the previous Prime Minister, John Major, but had collapsed after the end of the first IRA ceasefire in the mid-1990s. In the Good Friday Agreement, most Northern Irish political parties, together with the British and Irish Governments, agreed upon an "exclusively peaceful and democratic" framework for the governance of Northern Ireland and a new set of political institutions for the province. In November 1998 Blair became the first British Prime Minister to address Dáil Éireann ending years of animosity between Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland.
Blair's first term saw an extensive programme of changes to the constitution. The Human Rights Act was introduced in 1998; a Scottish Parliament and a Welsh Assembly were set up; most hereditary peers were removed from the House of Lords in 1999; the Greater London Authority and the post of Mayor of London were established in 2000; and the Freedom of Information Act was passed later in the same year, with its provisions coming into effect over the following decade. This last Act disappointed campaigners, whose hopes had been raised by a 1998 White Paper which had promised more robust legislation. Also, whether the House of Lords should be fully appointed, fully elected, or be subject to a combination of the two remains a disputed question. 2003 saw a series of inconclusive votes on the matter in the House of Commons.
Significant change took place to legislation relating to rights of lesbian and gay and transgender people during Blair's period in office. During his first term, the age of consent for gay sex was equalised at 16 (see Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000) and the ban on gays in the armed forces was lifted. Subsequently, in 2005, a Civil Partnership Act came into effect, allowing gay couples to form legally recognised partnerships. At the end of September 2006 more than 30,000 Britons had entered into Civil Partnerships as a result of this law. The ultimate unpopularity of what should have been a fringe project meant that its failure had a political effect that far exceeded its intrinsic importance.

Domestic politics
In 1999, Blair planned and presided over the declaration of the Kosovo War. While in opposition, the Labour Party had criticised the Conservatives for their perceived weakness during the Bosnian war, and Blair was among those urging a strong line by NATO against Slobodan Milošević. Blair was criticised both by those on the Left who opposed the war in principle and by some others who believed that the Serbs were fighting a legitimate war of self-defence. One month into the war, on 22 April 1999, Blair made a speech in Chicago setting out his "Doctrine of the International Community".. This later became known by the media as the "Blair doctrine".
Also in 1999, Blair was awarded the Charlemagne Award by the German city of Aachen for his contributions to the European ideal and to peace in Europe.

Foreign policy
In the 2001 general election campaign, Blair emphasised the theme of improving public services, notably the National Health Service and the State education system. The Conservatives concentrated on opposing British membership of the Euro, which did little to win over floating voters. The Labour Party largely preserved its majority, and Blair became the first Labour Prime Minister to win a full second term. However, the election was notable for a large fall in voter turnout.
Following the 11 September 2001 attacks on New York and Washington, Blair was very quick to align the UK with the United States, engaging in a round of shuttle diplomacy to help form and maintain an international coalition prior to the 2001 war against Afghanistan. He maintains his diplomatic activity to this day, showing a willingness to visit countries that other world leaders might consider too dangerous to visit. In 2003, he became the first Briton since Winston Churchill to be awarded a Congressional Gold Medal by the United States Congress for being "a staunch and steadfast ally of the United States of America",

Iraq war
After fighting the 2001 election on the theme of improving public services, Blair's government raised taxes in 2002 (described by the Conservatives as "stealth taxes") in order to increase spending on education and health. Blair insisted the increased funding would have to be matched by internal reforms. The government introduced the Foundation Hospitals scheme to allow NHS hospitals financial autonomy, although the eventual shape of the proposals, after an internal struggle with Gordon Brown, allowed for less freedom than Blair had wished. Several healthcare trusts established under the foundation hospitals scheme are now in severe financial difficulties, having spent large proportions of their funding increases on pay rises for staff and on expensive drugs. As a result, with supply of healthcare services increasing less quickly than demand, benefits from the NHS have not increased to the same degree, and the NHS had an £800 million deficit for the 2005/6 financial year.
The peace process in Northern Ireland hit a series of problems. In October 2002, the Northern Ireland Assembly established under the Good Friday Agreement was suspended. Attempts to persuade the IRA to decommission its weapons were unsuccessful, and, in the second set of elections to the Assembly in November 2003, the staunchly unionist Democratic Unionist Party replaced the more moderate Ulster Unionist Party as Northern Ireland's largest unionist party, making a return to devolved government more difficult. At the same time, Sinn Féin replaced the more moderate SDLP as the province's largest nationalist party.
In its first term, the government had introduced an annual fixed tuition fee of around £1,000 for higher education students (rejecting requests from universities to be allowed to vary the fee), with reductions and exemptions for poor students. At the same time, the remaining student maintenance grant was replaced with a low-interest loan, which was to be repaid once the student was earning over a certain threshold. In 2003, Blair controversially introduced legislation permitting universities to charge variable fees of up to £3,000 per year. At the same time, the repayment of student loans was delayed until the graduate's income was much higher, and grants were reintroduced for some students from poorer backgrounds. It was claimed the increase in university fees violated a promise in Labour's 2001 election manifesto, though this claim is arguably unsustainable if the relevant promise is interpreted strictly and literally. At its second reading in the House of Commons in January 2004, the Higher Education Bill which contained the changes was passed with a majority of only five, due to a large-scale backbench Labour rebellion. A defeat was averted by a last-minute change of intention by a small number of Gordon Brown's backbench allies.
On 1 August 2003 Blair became the longest continuously serving Labour Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, surpassing Harold Wilson's 1964–1970 term. The Hutton Inquiry into the death of Dr. David Kelly reported on 2 August, ruling that he had committed suicide, and despite widespread expectations that the report would criticise Blair and his government, Hutton cleared the Government of deliberately inserting false intelligence into the September Dossier, while criticising the BBC editorial process which had allowed unfounded allegations to be broadcast. Evidence to the inquiry raised further questions over the use of intelligence in the run up to the war, and the report did not satisfy opponents of Blair and of the war. After a similar decision by President Bush, Blair set up another inquiry—the Butler Review—into the accuracy and presentation of the intelligence relating to Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction. Opponents of the war, especially the Liberal Democrats, refused to participate in this inquiry, since it did not meet their demands for a full public inquiry into whether the war was justified.
The political fallout from the Iraq War continued to dog Blair's premiership after the Butler Review. On 25 August 2004 Plaid Cymru MP Adam Price announced he would attempt to impeach Blair,

Domestic politics
On 19 October 2003 it emerged Blair had received treatment for an irregular heartbeat. Having felt ill the previous day, he went to hospital and was diagnosed with supraventricular tachycardia. This was treated by cardioversion and he returned home that night. He was reported to have taken the following day (20 October) more gently than usual and returned to a full schedule on 21 October. Downing Street aides later suggested the palpitations had been brought on by drinking lots of strong coffee at an EU summit and then working-out vigorously in the gym. However, former minister Lewis Moonie, a doctor, said the treatment was more serious than Number 10 had admitted: "Anaesthetising somebody and giving their heart electric shocks is not something you just do in the routine run of medical practice."
In September 2004, in off-the-cuff remarks during an interview with ITV news, Lord Bragg said Blair was "under colossal strain" over "considerations of his family" and that Blair had thought "things over very carefully." This led to speculation Blair would resign. Although details of a family problem were known by the press, no paper reported them because according to one journalist, to have done so would have breached "the bounds of privacy and media responsibility." The planned procedure was carried out at London's Hammersmith hospital.

Health problems
At the same time as Blair's operation it was disclosed the Blairs had purchased a house at 29 Connaught Square, London, for a reported £3.5 million.. The purchase also led to more speculation that Blair was preparing for life after government.

Connaught Square
The Labour Party won the Thursday 5 May 2005 general election and a third consecutive term in office. The next day, Blair was invited to form a Government by Queen Elizabeth II. The reduction in the Labour majority (from 167 to 66) and the low share of the popular vote (35%) led to some Labour MPs calling for Blair to leave office sooner rather than later; among them was Frank Dobson, who had served in Blair's cabinet during his first term. However, dissenting voices quickly vanished as Blair in June 2005 took on European leaders over the future direction of the European Union.

Third term 2005 to 2007
The rejection by France and the Netherlands of the treaty to establish a constitution for the European Union presented Blair with an opportunity to postpone the doubtful UK referendum on the constitution without taking the blame for failing from the EU. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw announced that the Parliamentary Bill to enact a referendum was suspended indefinitely. It had previously been agreed that ratification would continue unless the treaty had been rejected by at least five of the 25 European Union member states who must all ratify it. In an address to the European Parliament, Blair stated: "I believe in Europe as a political project. I believe in Europe with a strong and caring social dimension." lukewarm in spite of some diplomatic success including a last-minute budget deal. The most controversial result was an agreement to increase British contributions to the EU development budget for new member countries, which effectively reduced the UK rebate by 20%.

G8 and EU presidencies
On 6 July 2005, during the 117th International Olympic Committee (IOC) session in Singapore, the IOC announced that the 2012 Summer Olympics, the Games of the XXX Olympiad, were awarded to London over Paris by only four votes. The competition between Paris and London to host the Games had become increasingly heated particularly after French President Jacques Chirac commented three days before the vote that "one cannot trust people [ie: the British] whose cuisine are so bad."

London to host the 2012 Summer Olympics
On Thursday 7 July 2005, a series of four bomb explosions struck London's public transport system during the morning rush-hour. All four incidents were suicide bombings. Fifty-six people were killed and 700 injured. The incident was the deadliest single act of terrorism in the United Kingdom since 270 died in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland and replaced the 1998 Omagh Bombing (29 dead) as the second most deadly terrorist attack on British soil. It was also the deadliest bombing in London since World War II.
Blair made a statement about the day's bombings, saying that he believed it was "reasonably clear" that it was an act of terror, and that he hoped the people of Britain could demonstrate that their will to overcome the events is greater than the terrorists' wish to cause destruction. He also said that his determination to "defend" the British way of life outweighed "extremist determination" to destroy it. On 13 July 2005, he told that international cooperation would be needed to "pull up this evil ideology by its roots".

2005 London bombings
The introduction of further reforms to the education system, which restricted the involvement of local education authorities in opening new schools, proved controversial. Labour backbenchers opposed to the proposals produced a rival manifesto, and the Bill to introduce the changes was delayed while the government negotiated with them. The Conservative Party declared its support for the reforms, making passage certain but increasing the likelihood that Labour MPs would vote against them. On 15 March 2006, the Education and Inspections Bill passed its second reading, with 52 Labour MPs voting against; had the Conservative Party also voted against it would have been defeated.

Education reforms 2006
The local elections in England on 4 May 2006 dealt a blow to Blair, with the loss of 317 seats and 18 councils. This result was thought to be partly continued fallout from public dissatisfaction over the decision to invade Iraq, and partly due to a scandal concerning the Home Office's mishandling of foreign criminals' deportation. At the same time, an affair of the Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott with his diary secretary had been made public. Further, some Primary Care and Hospital Trust sustained significant deficits and had to release staff, which called into question the position of Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt. On 5 May, Blair reshuffled his Cabinet. Most significantly, Charles Clarke and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw were relieved of their duties and many other positions were reassigned. Many commentators saw this as a panic reaction designed to ward off calls for Blair to step down.

Premiership of Tony Blair Local elections on 4 May 2006 and cabinet reshuffle
Blair urged his fellow EU members on October 20, 2006 to send a strong message to the Sudanese government that it must allow a UN force into Darfur, arguing that it is a critical time for Darfur and therefore a chance for the EU to strengthen the pressure on the Sudanese government.

See also: Labour Party (UK) leadership election, 2007
After Labour's 2004 conference, on 30 September 2004, Blair announced in a BBC interview

Debate over Muslim women wearing veils
Blair was interviewed in connection with the cash for honours investigation by the police in December 2006, the first time that a serving Prime Minister has been questioned by police regarding a criminal investigation.