Nature and Scope of Economics

Many writers of the early days defined economics as “a science of wealth”. Adam Smith commonly know as the father of modern economics, defined economics as “An enquiry into the nature and causes of wealth of nations.”

These definitions were defective because they gave much importance to wealth. As wealth is not everything, it only leads to achieve welfare of human. Therefore it is man an which is the aim all of the economic activities.

Professor Dr. Alfred Marshall was the first economist who gave a logical definition of economics. He defined economics as: “A study of mankind in ordinary business of life, it examine that part of individual and social actions which is closely related with attainment and use of material requisites”

CHARACTERISTICS OF DEFINITION:

This definition gave a new direction to the study of economics. Following are the important characteristics of definition.

1. A Social Science

This Definition makes economics a social science. It is a subject that is concerned with the people living in society. According to Marshall, as the behavior of human beings is not same all the time therefore principles of economics cannot be formulated like the laws of sciences. Further laws of economics are not as exact as the laws of natural sciences. For this reason it is a social science.

2. Study Of Man

Economics is related to man; therefore it is living subject. It discusses economic problems and behavior of man. According to Marshall it studies the behavior of man In ordinary business of life.

3. Wealth As A Means Of Material Well Being

According to Marshall, wealth is not the ultimate objective of human activities and therefore we do not study wealth, for the sake of wealth. Therefore according to this definition we study wealth as a source of attainment of material welfare.

4. Economics And Welfare

This definition makes economics a welfare oriented subject. We are concerned only with those economic activities which do not promote material welfare of human beings are out of the scope of economics.

5. Materiality

Marshal stresses upon the concept of “material requisite of well being”. Therefore according to this definition all economic activities resolve around the acquisition and use of material goods like food, clothing etc. because they increase welfare of human beings. On the other hand non-material requisites of human life like education, recreation are ignored.

6. Normative Outlook

According to this definition economics should take care of good and bad aspects of economic activities and therefore involve itself in “what should be and what should not be”. This is called normative aspect of economics.

CRITICISM

“Robbins and other many economists severely criticized this definition on following grounds.”

1. Limited To Material Welfare

This definition limits the subject of economics to material welfare of people. But the subject of economics is not limited to the study of material welfare of human beings. In reality both material and non material aspects of wellbeing are studies in economics.

2. Vague Concept of Welfare

The concept of welfare used in this definition is also not clear. The welfare of human beings is not limited to the attainment of material requisites. There are many other factors which affect the human welfare. Further the word “welfare” has different meaning for different persons and different societies. Therefore we cannot define economics using an unclear concept of welfare.

3. Limited Scope

This definition has made the scope of economics limited. Only those activities are studied in economics which are aimed at the attainment of material requisites of well being. Further it ignores the economic activities of a person not living in society. Attainment of non material requisites of human well being fall out of the scope of economics. This division of material and non material aspects of human welfare is not correct.

4. Economics And Welfare

According to Robbins the study of economic activities on the basis of welfare is not good. It is not the duty of an economist to pass verdict that what is conducive to welfare and what is not. Thus according to Robbins “Whatever Economics is concerned with, it is not concerned with causes of material welfare as such.

5. Moral Judgment

In this definition Marshall makes economics a subject which considers the right and wrong aspect of economic activities. According to Robbins economics in neutral as regards ends and it is not the function of an economist to pass moral judgments and say what is good and what is bad.

6. Unrealistic

This definition appears to be unrealistic as we analyze it critically. The unclear concept of welfare, the division of ends into material and non material, the stress on good and bad, the concept of man living in society etc. all these concepts put unnecessary restrictions and make the scope of economics limited. These ideas make the definition unrealistic.

CONCLUSION

Although this definition gave a new direction to the subject of economics but it had many weaknesses. Some of the faults of definition are discussed above. For these reasons this definition was replaced by other new definitions of economics.

Source by Muhammad Waqas Nayyar

Lazarus in Crime and Punishment’s Epilogue

The greatest obstacle in literary criticism is the inability of the reader to know with certainty the mind of the author. For all we know, the author’s intentions could have been completely opposite the general analysis. For that reason, conflicting opinions abound, and controversy rages over issues that the author most likely never intended as such. In his Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky added an epilogue to conclude the novel. In the previous chapter, Raskolnikov, the protagonist, confesses and the police arrest him for murder. Many critics believe that this is an adequate ending and that the epilogue is entirely unnecessary, while others contend that the epilogue is very necessary, as it hints at Raskolnikov’s redemption and resurrection. Crime and Punishment is a Christian novel, with religious overtones and undertones throughout, such as Sonya’s reading of the story of Lazarus, which parallels Raskolnikov’s own story. However, the novel also loosely follows the structure and content of the Greek tragedy, and this coexistence of the Christian redemption and resurrection themes and the tragic Oedipus Rex themes creates a complex work that cannot be considered from only one perspective. The epilogue is extremely necessary to the conclusion of Crime and Punishment, as it allows for the further development of Raskolnikov’s character and giving him another dimension. He is not just the insane, crazed ax murderer whose guilt and depravity eat at him until he confesses. It seems that way at the end of the final chapter. But with the addition of the epilogue, Rodion Raskolnikov starts down the path of resurrection, which he hadn’t seemed inclined towards earlier in the novel. Without the epilogue, Raskolnikov would remain a less complex character, incapable of repentance.

Many critics reject the epilogue because they cannot accept the moral regeneration that it promises. According to Lev Shestov, Raskolnikov’s only crime was to believe that he was incapable of breaking the law, and that his tragedy was not his guilt and insanity but rather the “impossibility of beginning a new and different life” (71-72). The entire novel moves toward a conversion or resurrection, most notably and obviously by the appearance of the biblical story of Lazarus, read by the prostitute Sonya, who is based on Mary Magdalene. Dostoevsky did not choose Lazarus at random. He chose Lazarus because the story is a subtle reminder of Raskolnikov’s chance at redemption, to be reborn after repenting his sins. This theme of resurrection is prominent throughout the novel, and to ignore this theme is to ignore an enormous part of Dostoevsky’s meaning. Yes, this is a novel about the inner psyche of a sociopath and an exploration of guilt, but it is also about realizing one’s sins and repentance for them.

Edward Wasiolek raises a more valid argument in that he believes that Dostoevsky has failed to provide his readers with any evidence that Raskolnikov has enough spiritual awareness to contradict his theories put forth in his essay “On Crime” or to follow Sonya’s spiritual direction. This is a valid point, and it would be correct, if not for the abundance of examples of Raskolnikov starting the conversion. He is not reborn spontaneously, as Wasiolek would have you believe, but rather after a wealth of experiences that have influenced him to this end. For example, every time Raskolnikov helps the Marmelodovs, he does so because of a brief, but real, compassion. True, he regrets his charity almost instantly, but that thoughtless compassion suggests he does not feel the self-professed superiority in his heart. That resides only in his mind. As such, his consequent interactions with Sonya further this trend towards recognizing himself as a man on the same plane of existence as those he once considered lesser. Raskolnikov slowly progresses, allowing compassion to infiltrate his mind at times, beginning his conversion, his resurrection. As he realizes his own humanity, he becomes more conscious of his guilt. This indicates that he is not completely gone, that he can recover from the insanity that possessed him. Robert Louis Jackson notes that Raskolnikov’s behavior passes through two distinct phases-first showing great sympathy and compassion for those who need it and immediately, unthinkingly, takes measures to alleviate their suffering, and afterward feels disgust at having betrayed his intellectual principles, which don’t allow for sympathy towards such lesser, unworthy beings. However, that first, natural inclination to help those in need betrays Raskolnikov’s humanity. His sense of compassion “endows his actions with a magnanimity that runs counter to the malevolence of his scheme and the cruelty of his crime” (Matual, 28).

Furthermore, Raskolnikov never was a cold-blooded killer. His mind was convinced of his superiority, but in contemplating the murder, he was disgusted, repelled. He sought any excuse to forgo the task, but when what he perceived as a sign from the universe indicated that he must kill Alyona Ivanovna, he was filled with repugnance at the prospect of taking someone’s life. He never lost his doubts, nor his repugnance of the act, and it continued to eat away at him until he confessed at the end of the novel. Raskolnikov’s compassion for the poor and oppressed, his revulsion at the murder, and his memories of childhood innocence and piety provide a basis for his resurrection in the epilogue. The acts of compassion “represent only the potential for rebirth,” and “something more powerful is required to arose him from his spiritual lethargy and lead him toward the events of the epilogue” (Matual, 30). To end the novel after the confession is to leave Raskolnikov without finishing his story. His transformation was only just beginning, and only through his experiences at the Siberian prison can he continue the conversion. Only after a long spell of defiance at the prison, Raskolnikov gives in to his human side and responds to Sonya’s love. He pulls the bible out from under his pillow and reads once again of Lazarus, he who is reborn, just like him. Here Raskolnikov finally accepts his stint at the prison as his catharsis, be redeemed, and proceed to a new life. Raskolnikov is not just an evil, heartless person. His repugnance at his crime, his compassion for others, and his confession all hinted at a possible redemption. With the confession, he is only just starting down the path of conversion, and the epilogue is entirely necessary to see whether he will accept the consequences of his actions and be reborn or if he will reject them and withdraw into insanity and depravity once more.

In addition, the novel’s many facets and interlocking stories all point directly to the epilogue. Numerical motifs are prevalent, and they are left unfinished at the end of the novel, but with the inclusion of the epilogue, they are masterfully concluded. For example, the number nine recurs throughout the novel with regard to time. Crime and Punishment covers three nine-month periods: “1) from the genesis of the crime to its perpetration, 2) from the confession to the trial and the journey to Siberia, and 3) from the beginning of Raskolnikov’s exile to the moment when he embraces Sonia and a new life begins for him [… ] It takes nine months for the crime to be ‘hatched,’ nine months for the punishment to begin, and another nine months for Raskolnikov to be reborn in the epilogue” (Matual 32). Clearly, Dostoevsky was thinking of the period of birth, as each nine-month segment results in something being born. First, Raskolnikov’s terrible plot is carried out, carried to term and born, if you will. Second, Raskolnikov confesses and his transformation begins, which results in his deliverance to Siberia, where his final cycle begins. After nine months, he is reborn, allowing Sonya into his life and repenting his sins, feeling genuine regret for the atrocities he committed. Raskolnikov’s mind is born first, resulting in the murders. His body is born second, upon his deliverance to Siberia. His heart and soul are born last, reuniting his body, mind, and soul, and concluding his resurrection. Had Crime and Punishment ended with Raskolnikov’s confession, there would be a complete and utter lack of closure. Uncertainty would remain concerning his conversion and the consequences of his actions. Sometimes leaving the reader with doubt at the end of a novel is a useful and pleasing conclusion, but not with doubt as to the driving questions of the novel. Dostoevsky masterfully concluded Crime and Punishment in such a way as to answer all those questions, and yet still leaves the reader wondering what form Raskolnikov’s new life with Sonya would take.

Another point to consider is the structure of Crime and Punishment. It parallels the Greek tragedy, and it also parallels the story of Lazarus. The concept of fate, which has a pagan connotation, and the concept of God’s will are, strangely, not at odds with each other. They coexist, leaving the reader to interpret the happenings as they will, perhaps considering divine intervention, perhaps considering coincidences. Depending on the view the reader takes, interpretations can vary. For instance, considering Christianity and the story of Lazarus, the novel is quite unfinished without the inclusion of the epilogue. Raskolnikov’s true transformation would remain in doubt, and the parallels between Lazarus and Raskolnikov would end abruptly. Dostoevsky included Lazarus for a reason, and so would never leave the conclusion to Raskolnikov’s story incomplete. He planned for the epilogue to conclude this storyline, and merged Lazarus’s and Raskolnikov’s fates. The pagan fate is similar to the belief in predestination, as God already knows what will happen. Even from a pagan perspective, the epilogue is necessary to provide for the knowledge of Raskolnikov’s transformation and new life, and ultimately his fate.

Although Crime and Punishment’s epilogue strikes many critics as heavy-handed and unnecessary, it is an important component and essential conclusion to the novel. The objections raised are without a solid basis, as Raskolnikov did not spontaneously reach repentance and redemption, but rather had the potential to do so all his life. In actuality, the presence of good and compassion within him provides his character with depth and another level of complexity, making every decision that much harder. Because his mind and his heart are at odds with each other, each surface at different points of the novel, expressing disgust, revulsion, or contempt at the other. This drives him mad, and eventually his compassion beats out his superiority and drives him to confess. The epilogue provides Raskolnikov with another dimension, his capacity for good, as he repents his sins and becomes a new man. The epilogue is unavoidable, the accumulation of all the preceding events that culminate in Raskolnikov’s transformation.

Works Cited

Dostoevsky, Fyodor. Crime and Punishment. New York: Bantam Dell, A division of Random House, Inc., 1866.

Jackson, Robert Louis. “Philosophical Pro and Contra in Part One of Crime and Punishment,” Twentieth Century Interpretations of Crime and Punishment. Eaglewood Cliffs: Prentice- Hall, 1974. p. 27.

Matual, David. “In Defense of the Epilogue of Crime and Punishment.” EBSCO Publishing, 2002. 26-34.

Shestov, Lev. Dostoevsky I Nitshe. Berlin: Skify, 1923. 71-72.

Wasiolek, Edward. “On the Structure of Crime and Punishment.” PMLA 74, 1959: 135.

Source by L. M. Newcomb

Peter Berger’s Sociology: An Unvarnished Introduction

Prose and Presentation

Berger’s prose style is neither elegant not convoluted. For the most part it is a model of plain-spoken clarity, though one must remember that he is an intellectual and a professional sociologist, typically writing for those who fit in the same or similar categories. Moreover, from time to time and source to source he may resort to the use of gratuitous neologisms, something that, in my experience, often leaves an author and his readers poorly served.

Nevertheless, neologisms are consistent with Berger’s judgment that sociologists have an obligation to create concepts to serve the research purpose at and. Berger is unconvinced by claims that the established conceptual apparatus known to most sociologists is sufficiently flexible and exhaustive in coverage to be of universal value.

In The Homeless Mind, for example, Berger invoked concepts of his own making, or that he had borrowed from relatively obscure sources, in an effort to more effectively capture the complexities and difficult substantive concerns of modernization and modernity. His use of adventitious concepts such as mechanisticity and compenentiality was prompted by his judgment that understanding the institutions and styles of consciousness in a modernized world is sufficiently difficult to require application of new and different ideas. Unfortunately, however, the result was a collection of unnecessary, awkward, and not particularly attractive or illuminating terms that occur much less frequently than one might expect throughout the rest of the book.

On the oddly infrequent occasions in which I encountered one or more of these clumsily mystifying locutions, I paused, translated it into everyday language or established social scientific concepts, and wondered why Berger had made this sort of translation necessary. This kind of misguided linguistic inventiveness represents the repository of terminological pretentiousness and confusion that makes outsiders suspicious of sociology as an intellectually constructive discipline. This is exactly the sort of ill-conceived conceptual apparatus that Berger himself has referred to as “the technical dialect for which sociologists have earned a dubious notoriety.”

Perhaps this is an unduly harsh judgment, and certainly, in principle, development of new concepts tailored to specific tasks may be a good idea. It does seem, however, to diminish the value of sociological concepts already in wide use. It also makes one wonder if Berger fails to appreciate his estimable facility in dealing with complex and difficult social phenomena using everyday language devoid of extraneous, quasi-technical terminology. After all, Berger himself has held that most sociology can be effectively presented in ordinary English.

In addition, in other contexts Berger has shown that he is perfectly capable of parsimoniously producing suggestively useful and linguistically new concepts well suited to a particular project. For example, when working in South Africa as part of a group charged with anticipating what the post-apartheid nation might look like, he was asked to provide a conceptual framework that would guide the efforts of the disparate collection of bright and accomplished policy analysts with whom he was working.

Wisely, Berger used “The Social Construction of Reality” as his point of departure. In addition, he invoked the term “cognitive maps” to refer to the interests of the various politically active groups with a stake in developments in their nation.

“Cognitive maps” strikes me as just the right concept to capture the conflicting, over-lapping, and independent interests involved. There’s nothing awkward or mystifying about it, and it serves Berger’s purpose quite well. It seems that Berger’s talent for inventing new concepts and suitably readable neologisms varies enormously from one project to another, with the fewer the better being a very good guideline.

As a contemporary sociologist of knowledge, Berger is primarily interested in what ordinary people know — commonsense or recipe knowledge — rather than arcane philosophical accounts of the ideas of highly specialized scholars. Finding truth according to some presumably infallible absolute and fundamental standard is not part of Berger’s project. Instead, his first concern is the reality of everyday life, or commonsense knowledge. Since we live in an inter-subjective world, commonsense knowledge is the knowledge we share with others in our everyday activities and mundane interactions.

Berger insightfully grasps the fact that this is the kind of knowledge without which society could not exist. The shared, all-purpose, commonsense nature of commonsense knowledge provides an answer to a question of first importance to Durkheim and numerous other sociologists, namely “how is society possible.” The answer for Berger is that commonsense knowledge provides the building blocks that make it so.

I think that an important implication of Berger’s perspective is that it is a waste of time for the sociologist, rather than the philosophical anthropologist, to struggle with a definition of human nature. If sociologists are interested in human nature as a foundation for their theorizing and substantive work, I think it’s best to construe it as contingent and context specific. We are products of the circumstances in which we live, and our nature is contextually mutable and historically distinctive. In effect, we produce ourselves and are produced as part of the dialectical process of living with others in sets of circumstances that assure that our natures will be variable. Berger puts this exceptionally well in The Sacred Canopy, where he holds that “society is a dialectical phenomenon in that it is a human product and nothing but a human product, that yet continuously acts back on its producer.”

Berger’s emphasis on the sociology of everyday life as people actually live it is an important reason why his work, with occasional exceptions, has been consistently accessible. It also attunes us to the pervasively available meanings without which no society could exist. It focuses on the character of the social context in which we live and what we take to be factual and real.

Those who would take the foregoing, in sum, to mean that sociological knowledge is transitory and contingent have a point. Berger, however, offers a determined effort to make the case that sociology is in an advantageous position with regard to producing objective knowledge that cannot be dismissed a just relativistic speculation dressed up in methodologically and theoretically elaborate social scientific garb. When he trumpets his discovery of the unparalleled virtues of capitalism, however, he steps away from this position, making a fatal error of his own. For the most part, however, Berger’s position with regard to objectivity is perfectly tenable and devoid of special pleading for sociology.

Eventually, a book titled “Peter Berger’s Sociology: An Unvarnished Overview,” may appear in print, a thorough and critical discussion of the material we have just introduced. For now, those who would like to read an account of much of the material that provides the basis for Berger’s work can turn to “Classical Social Theory in Use: Interpretation and Application for Educators and other Non-Specialists,” published by Information Age.

Source by Robert Bickel

River Fishing Tips – Tips For Catching Fish In Cold Weather

As a person who has been fishing in rivers,especially small rivers that need to be waded to be fished effectively (mainly for trout or small mouth bass) it occurs to me that catching fish in cold weather can be a difficult proposition. In fact in many cases catching fish while river fishing during the months of December, January, and February can be so difficult that many anglers don’t even bother to try. Fish can be caught while river fishing in cold weather, it’s just the the rules are different than they are at other times of the year.

In this article I will discuss a few river fishing tips to help you catch more fish during the cold weather months of December, January, and February. The first of the river fishing tips to consider concerning fishing in cold weather is where the fish are located within the river system itself. During warm months when the water temperatures are warmer, fish are found throughout the river system. Fish can be found in pools, runs, and riffles during months other than January, February, and March, whereas during the cold weather months fish tend to congregate together in the deepest pools within the river. The biggest mistake fishermen make when attempting to river fish in cold weather is fishing in the same area’s that they catch fish during other times of the year. When the weather is cold concentrate your time on the deepest pools in the river and fish these pools very thoroughly.

The next tip for catching fish when the weather is cold is obvious, but is nonetheless an extremely valid tip. You always want to be prepared for the weather when fishing in cold weather, and depending on your favorite style of fishing the most important part of your body to keep warm is probably your hands. Nothing can ruin a perfectly good fishing trip like cold hands, which is where a quality pair of fishing gloves and/or glove liners comes in to play. Glove liners can act as “fingerless gloves” as well, which is nice for being able to feel your fishing line for tying knots or feeling for bites while fishing and then when the fishing is over you simply slip your warm gloves over your glove liners to keep your hands warm and toasty. Wearing a beanie style cap is also very helpful for keeping your whole body warm when fishing in cold weather and is something that every cold weather fisherman shouldn’t be without, seeing as how ninety percent of your body heat escapes through your head when the temperatures are cold.

The next of the river fishing tips that I want to discuss in regards to fishing in cold weather is the size of the bait or lure that you use. In the cold weather months of January, February, and March water temperatures become extremely cold and because fish are cold blooded creatures, their metabolism slows down considerably. This means that the fish don’t feed as often due to their slow metabolism and means that you want to downsize your baits when fishing in cold weather. For example rather than using an entire live worm as bait in cold weather just use a two inch section of a worm or rather than using a half ounce Rooster Tail use one that is 1/16 of an ounce and plan on “working harder” for each and every bite that you receive. In cold weather it is often necessary to put your offering literally in front of the fishes nose to get the fish to bite, which means that you usually have to make a lot more casts than you might be used to.

Keep these simple river fishing tips in mind the next time that you head out in search of fish when the temperatures are cold. They will not only help you to experience more success, they will help you be much more comfortable as well.

Source by Trevor Kugler

Murder of Benevolent Media

The fourth estate of democracy in India, being the mirror of the society upholds the duty of public care. Media is looked upon not only as mere mediator of knowledge but as the only powerful weapon at the hands of a layman specially in a corrupted unsafe land. An afflicted individual judicially unheard seeks honest support from media, the only sector expected to have the most secular, credible and unbiased behavior. Ethical and socially responsible media has the strength of questioning any section of authority and portraying the hidden criminals fearlessly. But what happens when this media is suppressed to silence by the so-called eminent politicos?

There are immense instances in every country wherein enormous number of media personnel are either threatened or annihilated to death just for the simple reason of benevolence. A media person is subdued either under business and political authority or under his own gluttonous interests. Every media student dream of becoming an honest journalist but certain incidents all around the world shatter it in seconds.Nevertheless, if under rare circumstances, an individual attain success in portraying illegal yet concealed offences of authoritarian officials he is perished advertently. Irony is that Earth loses an honest soul at every single step of honesty and every school teaches “Honesty is the best policy”. When media is being relied for its altruistic services, why does it face challenges against its own survival? New media is being built for fearlessly publicising opinions of the voiceless but those opinions face heinous consequences. Specifically media people are killed simply for exercising their right to freedom of speech and expression.

An essential question arising is that Has Freedom of Speech and Expression, the sole component for any individual to survive, simply vanished? Everyone has the constitutional right (Article 19(a) of Indian Constitution) to Freedom of speech and expression which is violated in such cases. Murdering a person due to his social media activism specially when the posts are beneficial for the public, is a reprehensible crime punishable in the eyes of society as well as law.

For now a concluding statement can be derived that If media has the duty of digging out hidden truths in front of the public, no power structure has the right to suppress media or any such information unless it is considered false under law. Media is made for the people, is representative of the people and will leave no stone unturned in saving the public from irrational cruelties of political leaders.

Source by Alruba Sheikh

Top 7 Similarities of Business and Politics

Politics and Business are so similar in many ways. Sure politics is much dirtier and generally played by less ethical individuals and yet the similarities are often uncanny. Perhaps a brief point-by-point comment on this subject will open a new perspective on this subject. Below are a few similarities to help the thinking juices flow and allow some conceptual thoughts.

1.) In politics you must canvas the area using data about the voters; in business you use demographic software to gather information about the customer.

2.) In politics you must get the voter to make a decision to vote for your candidate; in business you must get the consumer to choose your product or service over your competitor.

3.) In politics you must employ multiple methods to reach the voter; In business any good marketing program uses multiple media, mediums and methods to reach the consumer.

4.) In politics you must show how your candidate is better and different; In business you must show how your brand is best.

5.) In politics you must get those people to the polls to vote; in business you must get those customers in the door of your business to buy something.

6.) In politics you must win or you are forgotten; In business you must beat your competition and the customer must buy from you or you go out of business.

7.) In politics the customer decides with his or her vote; in business your voter buys your product or service with his or her dollar.

I hope this philosophical discussion allows you to see business from a different perspective and if you are in business and considering politics, forget it. Business is a much better game than politics and as a politician might say; You Can Trust Me on This in 2006.

Source by Lance Winslow

Free Military Background Check – Find Out If A Person Is Really In The Military

When it comes to hiring new employees, knowing that you hired the right person can be an ease to you mind and allow you to return back to normal daily work routines faster. One such way of putting your mind at ease is to have the applicant undergo a military background check. This will let you know if they in fact were in the military and if they were, where they honorably or dishonorably discharged. Not everyone is willing to be open about their military service record and in many cases people may even lie stating they were in the service when they never were. Help filter out those who are prone to lying by performing a military background check on every employee.

The military background check is just another tool at the disposal of business men and women across the country who wants to make hiring a new employee easier on the mind. Let’s face it, no one wants to hire a lazy and worthless employee, but this happens all the time. Prevent this from happening to you by making sure they are who they say they are and that their background record is clean and secure.

Regardless of what your company does, making sure that the applicant is the right candidate for the position is probably the most important part of the hiring process. You can ensure this is true and at the same time minimize your chances of hiring a liability to your company and your company’s name by making sure you perform the appropriate background checks on every applicant.

Sometimes your business may only require the standard background check while other times you may need to opt for a comprehensive or even a federal background check. It does not matter which one you need, all that matters is that you make sure that your applicant’s background records are clean and free of any questionable information which may come back to haunt you later. You can do this through a military background check and put your mind at ease knowing you hired the best candidate for the job.

Source by James Dean

The Advantages and Disadvantages of International Money Transfer Online Services

Advantages and disadvantages are attached to everything on the planet Earth. As far as money sending concerns; although the advancements in IT have made it possible to send money online in minutes, yet the dark side of the picture can not be overlooked along with appreciating the bright aspects. At first, let us take a view of the advantages of international money transfer online services:

  • The first and the most prominent benefit we get from these services is the rapidity. Gone are the days when people had to wait for weeks for transaction of money. At present, you can transfer money online from one place to another in minutes.
  • Various banks have featured power transfer, which enables you to track the money online whether you are a recipient or a sender of that money.
  • Lots of banks have featured remittance. With the help of this feature, you can receive money in your local currency and use right after you receive it.
  • Another benefit is that you can send money straightly to bank accounts via online banking now-a-days.
  • Online money transfer services have provided a platform to online business-groups where they can move fast and grow rapidly without wasting time in the formalities of sending money offline like waiting for the checks to clear.

Having walked through the advantages which online money transaction offers, now let us turn to the disadvantages it bears.

  • The weightiest disadvantage is the transfer fee taken by international money transfer online services. You must have to pay some fee to them, otherwise it is impossible to utilize the services.
  • Sometimes involvement of credit card and debit card in online money transfer leads to losses. In other words, you money is not hundred percent secure in process.
  • Some websites are used to keep money temporarily in case money is not sent directly to bank account. The user passwords for these websites can be hacked by hackers resulting in the loss of money.
  • When you send money online, you have to face the technical difficulties of the process.
  • You have to be patient because long queues are quiet usual in online money transaction.
  • The quick transaction in debit cards causes difficulties in recovering lost funds.

By and large, online money transfer services are neither from heaven nor from hell. In spite of all their advantages, lots of people rely more upon offline money transaction. And in spite of all their disadvantages, a huge percentage of the world population utilizes international money transfer online services on regular bases.

Source by Beenish Inaamulhaq Maya

UBC Vancouver Environmental Design Application: Architecture School Application Portfolios

I have been lucky enough to have been accepted into the University of British Columbia’s School of Architecture + Landscape Architecture Environmental Design Program. The Environmental Design Program, a third-year transfer program, offers a design intensive education that prepares its graduates for continuing on into a Master’s of Architecture, Landscape Architecture or Urban Planning. The program is relatively new to UBC’s School of Architecture but in its few years of existence has grown to hold a strong reputation for developing highly skilled students with strong work ethic, a broad scope of design-based knowledge, and an unprecedented ability to collaborate.

Like the hundreds of applicants each year, I was among those who read the pages of the program’s website until I nearly had it memorized. The online information discusses how this design school is proud of the diversity of the students it accepts and how the small class size fosters a strong sense of teamwork within the Environmental Design Community. In May of 2011 I was one of the 25 fortunate applicants to be accepted into this tight group of design-minded individuals. I started the school year with basic expectations; thinking that this year would be similar to my first two years of general university education. However, my expectations were soon blown away. I had no idea that architecture school would teach me skills that stretch so far beyond the immediate skills required to produce good design or that classmates could become a design family. For those who have not been through the Environmental Design program, the closest thing I can equate the experience to is A&E’s Project Runway. There were tears, throwing up, fits of laughter and risky design but in the end and through the process of working closely with extremely talented creative minds, good design was produced and a strong design team was formed.

If you are interested in also being accepted into UBC’s Environmental Design Program in Vancouver, British Columbia, then you need to know that the most important part of your application package is the portfolio. Here, I offer the knowledge gathered from my personal wins and losses with my ENDS application process. I hope that it may be helpful in your own work and I wish all potential applicants as this past year in ENDS was my most rewarding to date. The struggles were worth it and I would do it all again.

For Environmental Design hopefuls, the item that holds the most weight in determining your acceptance into the program is the portfolio of your design work. The best and only piece of advice I received regarding the application portfolio was to present as varied a body of creative works as possible. I submitted photos of my textile work, wood work, furniture, paintings, sculptures and charcoal drawings. After comparing portfolios with other classmates that had been accepted into the program, I realize that presenting a very diverse body of work was the way to go. If you are a great painter, excellent; submit your best two paintings you have ever done and then turn your creative focus to another medium. Some of the other members of my class submitted songs or plays they had written or documented an extraordinary hike that they completed. Stepping completely out of the box like this is great, and perfect for the ENDS community, however you need to know how you can relate these different experiences to design and you need to be able to explain it very briefly in a short description accompanying the piece you are submitting.

I’ll tell you right now, that one of the biggest lessons I learned this past semester is that everything, EVERYTHING, can be related to design in some way, shape or form. What makes a truly individual is being able to make the connection and explain it in such a way that the less creatively inclined can also understand the connection you are making.

Diversity of creative works are preferred, but beware of stretching yourself too thin in order to try something new. You do not want to sacrifice the quality or integrity of your work in any way. The application committee have their eyes trained to throw out portfolios that contain anything that is of poor quality and that was quickly done. Do not try to fool them, it just will not work. Take the time to produce the best work you can. I would highly recommend taking a few visual arts courses. They are extremely helpful in getting those creative juices flowing, especially for applicants who are predominantly interested in math and sciences. Please note that this does not make you any less qualified of an applicant as someone coming from a major in fine arts, it just means that you have different skills that will be useful to your ENDS community and that you have to be creative in coming up with a way to show the portfolio reviewers that math and science are extremely creative fields as well. Again, I’ve seen examples of this very thing in some of my fellow classmates who came directly out of majors in science and they are doing very well and have unique qualities to add to their own work and the work of the class. If you are in visual arts classes, the work produced in those classes are good candidates for pieces in your application portfolio, however, if you are submitting an art work that was a class assignment, make sure that it is your best work and that it is unique. School art projects typically tend to look like just that: school art projects. A few of these are fine as they demonstrate that your learned some useful skills, however the more art work you can submit that is 100% unique to you, the better.

The ENDS application requires there to be no less than 15 and no more than 18 pieces in your portfolio. I would shy away from submitting the maximum number. If you can keep it around 15-16 pieces, it shows that you can say more with less, that you know how to recognize good from bad work and that you are able to self-edit. The criteria for the format of the portfolio is let completely open to the applicant. The one and only criteria is on the size: 9x12x1/2.” This is another place to show your creativity. This of the assembly and presentation of the portfolio as an art piece in itself. How are the pieces arranged? It is a book? A web page? A slide show on a disk? A miniature horse wearing a sandwich board with your portfolio posted on it? I heard of one student years ago who applied to another local design school by buying a Boler camper unit, gutted it and turned it into a mini, mobile gallery of his art work. He drove it down to the school and was accepted on the spot. Be as creative with the assembly of the portfolio as you were with the pieces themselves. If there is one thing to remember here it is to be consistent with your design moves. Every move means something whether it is a colour choice, paper size or thickness, digital or hard copy, black and white or colour, scrap booked or formatted in inDesign. My advice is to make your choice, and then stick with it 100%. If you are going to scrap book your portfolio, do it all the way and do it extremely well.

If you are unsure of how to take the portfolio assembly process to the next level, then the next best thing you can do is to produce the most professional work possible. Get yourself a layout program, I suggest the trial version of Adobe inDesign, and assemble crisp, clean-looking pages. Spend the money to get your work scanned or photographed at the highest resolutions possible for sharp images. If you are submitting a hard copy, invest in getting your portfolio printed at a respected print shop and on quality paper. The cleanest way I have found to attach the portfolio pages together is to leave a 1/2 inch margin on the left side of each page, punch holes straight through the entire stack (no more than two or three) and then insert Chicago screws. This is called post-binding and the screws can be found at any major hardware store, Rona or Home Depot for example. It is a two-part mechanism, so be sure to get both parts. This is just one suggestion for one method, but it is up to you to create the portfolio that best matches your style and your personality.

I would like to clarify that the information that I have shared is not necessarily specific to the Environmental Design Program at UBC alone and that the information in this article can be applied to a portfolio application to any design school.

Source by Emily Warkentin

Why Biomass Energy Is Better Than Other Types of Renewable Energy

There are many different forms of “green” or renewable energy available today and people are continually looking for more energy-efficient sources of green power as the concern about global warming and greenhouse gases comes to the forefront. For those looking to escape dependence on foreign oil and for those interested in reducing their impact on the planet, one type of energy stands out among the rest: biomass energy.

Biomass energy is energy derived from organic materials, usually waste materials.

Biomass energy is, of course, not the only type of green or renewable energy that exists on the market. Other popular options include solar power and wind power. However, while these other options get a lot of attention in the media, biomass is considerably better than these choices for several different reasons:

* Biomass helps keep waste out of landfills. While solar energy makes use of the power of the sun and wind energy harnesses the wind, biomass energy uses organic waste products to create energy. Approximately 70 percent of the waste products disposed of in landfills in the United States contain biomass and many companies produce a significant amount of biomass that adds to this number every day. Biomass keeps the waste out of landfills and harnesses it into something useful.

* Biomass energy has a very long track record of success. Biomass energy has been used in some form or another since the days of the caveman burning wood for fire. Biomass is not a new technology or a passing fancy but is instead a long-established source of energy.

* Biomass energy is a very reliable source of energy. You are not dependent upon the sun to shine or on the wind to blow in order to use biomass. This means it can be used in more places and by more people in a very reliable manner and produce the power necessary for many different applications. Many people are reluctant to switch to solar or wind power because of problems with consistent energy being available but this worry is eliminated when you make use of biomass. In fact, some companies produce enough biomass waste to provide all that they need for their energy production without depending on a third-party supplier, increasing reliability even further since there is always a ready source of biomass.

* Biomass energy doesn’t require an entirely new system or process to work. With co-firing, you can use your existing boilers and use biomass along with coal in order to reduce the amount of coal used by up to 20 percent. This is much easier in many cases than trying to entirely switch your power plant to solar or wind power.

* Biomass energy is the only form of liquid renewable energy that is available. This factor, along with the fact that it doesn’t depend on sun or wind, also helps to make it suitable for applications and uses where wind and solar power would not necessarily work.

All of these are significant advantages of biomass energy and they all help to explain why biomass is preferable to other sources of green or renewable energy. If you want to stay ahead of the curve; be prepared for new potential government regulations that limit energy use; and do your part to reduce waste and greenhouse gases, it is time to consider biomass for your industrial or commercial application.

Source by Pierce David