Ladder : Its Use as Metaphor, Its Origins, Development and Functionalities

General

More often than not, the word ladder is used as a rhetorical device, when referring to or narrating an uphill journey to reach the pinnacle of success. We often encounter phrases like, “climbing the ladder of success,” “corporate ladder,” political ladder,” and “social ladder” to idiomatically describe a quest that requires working one’s way to the top in a linear manner.

Why ladder and not stairs or steps? The idea is to use metaphor that is more related to slow upward movement, while maintaining a strong foothold on a step that is characteristically narrow. Maintaining balance or equilibrium on every level is important, as critical missteps can adversely affect one’s chances of making it to the top.

The same is true when trying to physically reach the top by way of a ladder. The latter, being a standalone equipment, requires several factors such as normal force, frictional force, gravitational force, wall-to-ladder angle, and the torque produced when all forces are at work. However, such forces must achieve a state of equilibrium to make sure the contraption will not slip or topple.

Origin of Ladders

The interesting thing about ladders is that the earliest period in which they were invented is as far back as 10,000 years ago. Paintings discovered in the mesolithic rocks of the Spider Cave in Valencia, Spain provided evidence that flexible ladders, seemingly constructed with some kind of grass, were already in use as means of accessing honey bee nests.

Still, not a few researchers believe that ladders with more functional designs came around during biblical times, in which ancient Egyptians and Hebrews developed and perfected ladders into what most of us use today.

Modern-Day Ladders: Forms and Uses

Modern-day ladders come in many forms, and are now commonly self-supporting; not requiring a wall or hard solid surface on which a force acts upon to create leverage. Most households keep a ladder handy in case they need to do chores that involve reaching or accessing something way above the head. Painters, carpenters, installers, as well as artists working on murals prefer ladders to scaffoldings, being a safer alternative to makeshift contraptions.

The advent of different home designs, installable devices and equipment, including the latest outdoor innovation, above-ground swimming pools, has made ladder use quite important. Dependent on the nature and purpose with which ladders are used, a ladder may be single or double-sided, may include a top deck, built with steps instead of rungs, or a combination of steps on one side and rungs on the other side. Materials also vary, ranging from wood, metal, aluminum or plastic.

Brexit : What’s Stopping the No-Deal EU-Withdrawal from Happening?

Uncategorized

Brexit to many is not as as simple to understànd, especially up to now when the move to withdraw has been extended twice, to which date of effectivity has extended to October 31, 2019.

Confusions About the Deal or No-Deal Brexit Conditions

Mentions about exit with or without deal upon effectivity date has been floating but remains baffling. The general understanding was that the UK was set to exit from the European Union last March 29, 2019, even if the UK and EU Council fails to arrive at a withdrawal agreement. .

Under the No-Deal scenario, the UK will engage in free trade, while businesses and people carrying on with activities in the UK, will abide by UK’s own set of laws. Yet Brexit finality remains uncertain, since extensions rather than the no-deal Brexit, has transpired.

Concerns Over a No-Deal Brexit

The crux of the matter is that if the UK goes ahead with free trade without a Brexit deal, there are apprehensions that disruptions and confusions may transpire. Disagreement may arise with regard to trading laws, border issues, tariffs, residence rights of citizens, consumer rights and protection and even over matters as simple as mobile phone charges.

Certain movements of goods and people require definitive rules. Although the UK has already set some guidelines, some EU member countries and other territories may raise issues if UK’s non-EU aligned policies adversely affect their businesses and citizens.

On the other hand, if UK goes into free trade with a Brexit deal, the withdrawal movement initially sets out within a transition period. In which case, temporary agreements are in place until unforeseen problems have been threshed out and resolved with a more permanent UK or EU policy.

Examples of Issues Clouding a No-Deal Brexit

As a rule, countries that do not have free trade deals between them have to abide by the rules set forth by the World Trade Organisation (WTO). This denotes that if the UK trades with EU member countries without a pre-agreed deal, tariffs or taxes imposed on imported goods will be based on WTO tariff rates.

A certain land border must be established in order to determine up to what point EU’s trade directives apply or do not apply as far as UK is concerned. Instead of installing custom posts, border towers and security systems, the EU and UK agreed to establish the 310-mile border separating Ireland from Northern Ireland as the the land border between the UK and EU.

In this scenario, Northern Ireland remains aligned with EU, which means UK products brought to the territory may be subject to controls and checks based on EU regulations. The establishment of the border has been referred to as “the backstop” safety net in the Brexit negotiations.

In the event the UK goes ahead with free trade, without formalising an agreement pertaining to border transactions, the “backstop” safety net stays. This denotes UK product movements in Northern Ireland will abide with EU regulations until such time that a more definitive agreement has been established.

Analysis of Trump’s Migration Policy Changes Has Lowered Number of Foreigners Granted Immigrant Status

Politics

The Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan organization that conducts authoritative research and analysis of information about migration and integration policies recently came out with an analysis of what the Trump administration has achieved so far.

The analysis shows that despite the strong pronouncements made by President Trump about his intention to change the migration landscape in the US, his administration has so far achieved only baby steps. Nonetheless, the changes implemented even if not visible, are important, since fewer number of immigrants have succeeded in gaining legitimate entry into the country

Examples of Policy Shifts that Lowered Migrant Admissions in the US

While Trump’s main political promise to build a higher US-Mexico Border Wall in the south is yet to see fulfillment, several changes were set into motion. Their implementation in related federal agencies somehow brought down the number of foreign nationals taken in by the country.

Enhancement of Immigration Enforcement – Interviews on all visa applicants, including those applying for “green card” has been mandated. Applicants for temporary visa were met with increased scrutiny, while additional requirements became necessary as part of a more comprehensive vetting procedure. All of which, contributed to the slowing down of US visa processing.

Cut Backs on Humanitarian Programs – In addition to increasing application requirements, federal agencies in charge of handling refugees and asylum seekers have implemented a narrower set of eligibility criteria. The goal of which is to scale down the number of noncitizens allowed to enter as refugees, or to receive temporary protection.

Increased Vetting and Obstacles for Legal Immigration – After hurdling a legal battle, the Trump administration succeeded in banning nationals coming from Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen; citing as reasons terrorist activities, inability to properly document travelers and poor cooperation with US authorities.

Critical Setbacks Preventing Trump Administration in Implementing Other Migration Policy Shifts

To date, the Trump administration is faced with several lawsuits and house committee investigations. Many of which are aimed at putting an end to president Trump’s continuing pursuit of the billions of dollars worth of funding for expanding the US Mexico border wall. In fact, none of Trump’s proposed legislations have been passed by the US Congress, while not a few court rulings have suspended the implementation of his executive orders, which include the “Zero Policy”. The latter calls for the filing of criminal charges against adults proven to have illegally entered the US.

Why Even Wedding Photography is Also About Conveying Political Statements

Political Photography, Politics

Politics has a different meaning from political. Photography is not politics because as a profession, its essence as a career has nothing to do with activities associated with governance, or in referring to ideologies dividing individuals into parties, organizations or stances.

Yet photography can be political because it captures images that can make a statement, or convey a message, as well as tell a story about a subject and what he, she or they represent. Political photography therefore is similar to wedding photography.

Different Facets of Political Photography

Political photography makes photographic statements that suit the purpose of different persons, bodies or organizations involved in politics.

The Chief Official White House Photographer, for example, handles a team of photographers who covers the daily activities not only of the incumbent president, but also those of the members of his immediate family. However, not all photographs taken during the day are released for publishing. The White House communications department chooses which of the captured images can be best used to illustrate official White House statements offered as press releases.

Another example of political photography involves work commissioned to cover campaign trails of political candidates. To which the objective of course is to take photographs of candidates in ways that will convince voters of his sincerity in fulfilling his campaign promises. Campaign trail photographs also project stories of how well-loved, or at least how well the candidate was received in different regions.

Political Photographer vs. Photojournalist – A photojournalist covering the same campaign trail is not expected to duplicate the same shots taken by the political journalist.

A photojournalist has more leeway on how he or she wants to project the image of the candidate, usually for purposes of conveying neutrality or reality. If a candidate looks pale and feeble, then there is no need to adjust saturation in order to make the candidate look well and lively; or to edit out liver spots that suggest health disorders. A photojournalist may also apply lighting that will give equal emphasis on the candidate and the background, to suggest neutrality of the political statement conveyed by a photo

Still, all those three photographers are into political photography, albeit adhering to different photo-taking principles.

Wedding Photography is Also Political by Nature

Catherine Ross a professional wedding photographer is also a disciple of political photography. Her gallery of wedding photographs at https://catherinejgrossphotography.com exemplify how she uses lighting, angles and saturation in positions idealizing the bridal couple’s relationship. A wedding may be traditional, but it does not necessarily mean producing staple photos that project only the usual betrothal rites and the typical beaming smiles during wedding ceremonies.

To be political in capturing images of the union, a wedding photographer may choose angles that project the couple as a pair of forward-looking individuals all set to face the challenges of marriage. Rather than present them as dreamy-eyed lovers, a political presentation will focus on emphasizing facial projections that suggest strength and solidity of union.

Like Catherine, the current Official White House Photographer Shealah Craighead also started out as a professional wedding photographer. In interviews in which she was asked about her work as the official photographer of a quite controversial president, Ms. Craighead remarked that the challenges are mainly on the hectic schedule and in handling a team of photographers, but not on the job itself.

She also commented that the job offer was an opportunity too valuable to pass up. After all, her main task is to see to the documentation of the history of Donald Trump and that of his first and second families, during his tenure as the 45th president of the United States.