WHEN IS A 100% BOTTLE OF JUICE MAINLY FILTERED WATER AND CONCENTRATE?

Whenever you visit supermarkets, gas stations, pharmacies, mom and pop shop and basically anywhere drinks are sold there is a high chance you are being sold a bottle of mixed drink consisting mainly of water as 100% juice. You might be saying, No way, Not I.

Just for the fun of it, the next time you go to your favourite supermarket or retail shop take a walk down the drinks aisle and look out for any bottle that has 100% Juice written on it.  How many say 100% Juice are simply that? Juice.

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Shouldn’t be a difficult exercise as these bottles are prominently displayed with the 100% juice conspicuously inviting you to “buy me, I am juice and good for you. I am a bit expensive but juice is expensive.”

Here is a picture I took of three such brands displaying their 100% Juice. There are many more brands that do this practice which some how is common and so wide spread we wonder if they are being regulated.

Of course. The Sales of Goods Act (1979), Fair Trade Commission, The Jamaica Bureau of Standards and the Consumer Affair Commission were created to protect consumers from companies that would dare to imagine much less sell mixed drinks as 100% juice. So we are protected? Right?  Wrong?

motts 100% 2 motts label

Let’s check one of these bottles and see. As noticed, clearly written at the front: “Mott’s 100% Apple Juice. What does this mean to you? The bottle of liquid is juice and nothing but juice?

Now let’s check the ingredients which is usually at the back of the bottle and facing the back of the shelf. The ingredients are listed as water, apple juice concentrate and ascorbic acid (vitamin c). Interesting but what is the logic or the intent?

I should also mention that I have seen some Mott’s 100% Juice doing just that. Being just Apple juice. So one wonders even more. Is seeing believing? 

CAVEAT EMPTOR VS CAVEAT VENDITOR

In law classes we learnt a Latin term called “Caveat Emptor” which meant “Let the buyer beware”. Simply, consumers are expected to think that businesses are ripped off artists and con men and they (consumers) should deal with businesses accordingly and with great reservations. It was quite common centuries ago. Is it happening now?

Centuries ago, in the Chandelor v Lopus (1603) famous case in the common law of England, a man paid £100 for what he thought was a bezoar stone. This is a stone that forms in animals’ intestinal systems, and was believed to have magical healing properties. The seller said it was a bezoar stone, which turned out to be false. The buyer sued for the return of the £100 purchase price. Should he had got back his money?

The Court held the buyer had no right to his money back, saying “the bare affirmation that it was a bezoar stone, without warranting it to be so, is no cause of action.” The majority of the judges held that the buyer was required to show either that the seller knew the stone was not a bezoar, in which case the seller was liable for deceit, or that the seller had warranted (contractually guaranteed) that the stone was a bezoar, in which case the seller would be liable for breach of warranty. Since the seller in this case was not alleged to have done either of these things, the buyer’s claim failed.

 This sad case of sadness continued for centuries but in the late 1970s the concept of caveat emptor  was giving way to caveat venditor (let the seller beware). The Sales of Goods Act (1979) and other legislation saw a new paradigm shift with the Courts basically warning sellers that, unless they expressly disclaim any responsibility, they will be held liable if the sold items are found defective or vary from the specifications.  

FACTS VS FIGURES?

Figures dont lie  mark twain

Yes. It has become such a sport to “exploit” people that many individuals and organizations delve into the art and science of persuading and confusing consumers. It is fun for some to get much from none.

At times, being hoodwinked by the supermarket, government and  big corporations can be as painful as being ripped off by con men, gun men and three card men down town.

Not saying Mott’s is telling lies. False is different from misleading.  It promotes and sells a mixture of water, apple concentrate and ascorbic acid as 100% Apple Juice. How ever, Mott’s did say CONTAIN 100% juice, not that the entire bottle is 100% apple juice. Figures don’t lie, but liars can figure. 

Let’s look at a 16 ounce bottle of drinks. If Mott’s pours four (4) ounces of 100% apple juice in the bottle along with 12 ounces of water, what does one call the entire mixture of apple juice and water? Apple Juice? Apple Drinks? Watery Apple Juice? Maybe it depends. Tricks in trade? Mischievous in business? 

RES IPSA LOQUITOR – THE THING SPEAKS FOR ITSELF.

Another term we learnt in Business law is : “res ipsa loquitor’ – the thing speaks for itself. Fortunately, most companies try to tell us what they are about but they do so using very fine print compared with the large print size for their “puffery”.

In summary, deception and fraud aside, the Bureau of Standards provides that manufacturers should list the ingredients for a product in descending order with the ingredient that is the most in terms of volume, weight and size being listed first.

Simply put, put the most first.  If water is listed first it means that water is the majority of the content. If apple juice is listed first it means that apple juice is the majority of the content. By extension, if apple juice alone is listed, it means ALL of the content is a 100% juice.

Fooling some people some of times can make you Guilty all the time.

 

Naked juice label
As a result of the law suit, Naked had to drop the ALL NATURAL claim. They still keep the 100% juice as there is no water in their product, unlike Mott’s.

In 2011, Naked Juice was forced to retract their claim that their juice was “100% fruit” and “all natural.” The juice company, owned by Pepsi, was actually including ascorbic acid and synthetic sources of fiber in their beverages — proving that “all natural” and #100%  can be fairly meaningless buzzwords.   The complaint points out that the “front-of-package promises that the product is ‘ALL NATURAL’ and ‘100% JUICE.’

It was held by the Court that a reasonable consumer would not assume that defendants were being deceptive and would not know to read the very-fine-print ingredient label.

PepsiCo Inc. agreed to settle for a $9 million lawsuit where each customer could receive up to US$75 in accordance to the company’s false, misleading and deceptive advertisements. Other companies, such as Kashi and General Mills Inc. faced identical disputes for using GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, while claiming to be #100percent natural and containing no artificial ingredients.

It begs a possible question: If Pepsi was  found guilty, can companies such as Mott’s and RubyKist be challenged? 

FACING THE MUSIC: POISON BUT GOOD FOR ME?

Einstein dangerious worldAt times, we find our selves in less than desirable relationships on many levels. How we handle them depends on many factors.  Sometimes we are faced with a dilemma.

Then again, the options are not really many but they are far reaching as it can impact ones behaviour when faced with similar situations. We can continue with the relationship having the comfort in knowing that we know the other party is lying. We can stop the relationship knowing that where honesty, integrity and trust are lost , it is usually for ever.

Interestingly, I was listening to some musical tracks done by my daughter, Aneil, while writing this blog.  Couldn’t resist sharing one of them with you.  POISON. Not sure why I thought it would be a fitting song to conclude this section with but here goes: POISON: the #3 track on Aneil’s Extended Play was released 2018. Can click here to watch or click on the Picture below


(Cho.)
Vs. 1
Your love is poison
But oh baby I want it
And oh baby I’m ‘on it’ (ye ey ey ey ey)
Ya take my mind on a roadtrip
My mind can’t behold it
All the tantalizing things that you say.
You do for me what sanity won’t
And that is to be your only girl
In reality it’s so wrong
Because you are already ‘owned’
Your love’s like that drug; can’t get enough
ECG shows my heart all over the charts

 

Aneil Poison You tube video artwork small version for yt
Aneil – Poison. Official lyric video. Click to watch.

 

You make me wanna ru-u-un, sta-a-ay, fight and rule the world (x2) with you
You’re poisoning
You’re poison
You make me wanna ru-u-un, sta-a-ay, fight and rule the world (x2) with you.

Vs. 2
What to do about us
Can’t believe it got to this
Each day that passes, I need you more
Still I wait for the day, you’ll tell me it’s not okay.
I’ll cry
You may
Then I’ll ask why.
You and I have to cool it
Barriers broke down, leaving us bare
My love for you is heightened
My chest tightens at the sight of you
Your love’s like that song; can’t get enough
Put you on replay, I can’t get enough.”

Cho rept.

IS THE EARTH FLAT OR A SPHERE? IT KEEPS MOVING.

FLAT BELIEFS OR ROUND SCOPE


Christopher Columbus, knowing the Earth is round,                                                            sailed from Spain westward and guess what he found.                                                         New places that he thought was the Asian mainland,                                                                   and the discoveries led to a new marauding band.

Copernicus, Bruno, Galilei, and Newton                                                                                       all have something in common:                                                                                                 they dare to say the earth moved and is a sphere                                                                   end up life not spared or living in fear.
C. Neil

My little poem above was written to set the stage for a meandering review or swipe at how belief in a round earth that moves can lead to discoveries and new exploration (Columbus) but can also lead to persecution and death (Bruno) or a twist of fate from heretic to hero (Galileo).

Indeed, the Galileo melodrama touches a very important point. What is Truth? Yesterday’s fallacy can be today’s fact and today’s fact may be tomorrow’s fiction. Yeah, history is not necessarily fair in its representation of truth as it is invariably written from the perspective of the victor and not the victim. Regrettably, many times the suppressed victim’s view is the right view as will see in Galileo’s case.

In the 21st century, fortunately or unfortunately, kids are now taught in kindergarten that the earth is spherical, does move but is fixed in its plane, orbits around the sun and doesn’t move under their feet because of gravity.

Of course in the 21 st century, there are also many folks who believe that such teaching is nonsense. This is understandable as most major ancient religions from Mesopotamia to Egypt to the Greeks and to the Hebrews were built on a perception of a flat fixed earth that is at the centre of the universe. This tenet was so important to religion and power, that to believe otherwise could get you persecuted or killed.

THE EARTH: EVOLUTION OF THE FACTS

Based on the literature, the idea of a flat geocentric earth was the first common and ordinary understanding of the universe. Many of the major ancient religions, from the occultism of Mesopotamia (Sumer), to the religion of Babel and Hindu, to the myths and legends of Egypt, to the conquest of Greece and Persia, to the might of the Romans, all had a common underlying thread of the creation of gods in man’s own image and likeness and the belief in a flat geocentric universe. . 

The manufacturing of idols such as Ra, Osiris, Isis, Tammuz and Ishtar coupled with a flat geocentric universe was necessary for ” manageable and duly” control of the populace. Religion was authority and determine facts. It also ensured the perpetuation of nepotism and hereditary power. Of course, absolute power, absolute corruption.

Image result for the hebrew and flat earth cosmo
Many ancient religions, including the Hebrews, purport a Flat Fixed Earth around which the Sun and planets revolved. However, since Pythagoras, Copernicus and Galileo, this view has been questioned.


In early Mesopotamian mythology, the world was portrayed as a flat disk floating in the ocean with a hemispherical sky-dome above, and this formed the premise for early world maps  like those of Anaximander.

Needless to say, the neighbouring Hebrews adopted and assimilated these occultic thoughts and precepts into their religion as well. Indeed one of the months of the Jewish Calendar is Tammuz, named after Tammuz, Sumerian Mesopotamian god of fertility embodying the powers for new life in nature in the spring. Do you also recall how King Solomon adopted the pagan religions of his over 700 wives to the chagrin of the Hebrew God, Jehovah.

The flat earth dogma prevailed for thousands of years until it saw its first major opponent in the 6th century: Pythagoras (570 BC). His idea was proposed using constellation observations, by studying the earth’s circular shadow on the moon during a lunar eclipse and also his belief that every thing could be explained mathematically prompted him to feel that the sphere was a perfect shape. 

Pythagoras (570 – 495 BC) also made the astronomic observation that the evening star and the morning star were in fact the very same object (Venus). He was more pragmatic than religious and his studying of astrology, numbers and metaphysics was ironically considered as occultism by occultists. His famous Pythagoras Theorem is an old Sumerian principle. He was caring to nature and was believed to be a vegetarian.

Image result for pythagoras
The Brotherhood of Pythagoreans,
Pythagorean Cult and the Pythagorean Theorem are believed to be based on Sumerian numerology and mysticism. Considered as the father of philosophy. Pythagoras was excommunicated by the Greeks for his radical thoughts.


To compound maters, not only was Pythagoras using occultism ideas, he founded the Brotherhood of Pythagorean (who coined the term mathematics) which many argue, was the world’s first Secret Society and the forerunner of Free Mason. The Pythagorean Cult was infamous and Pythagoras was excommunicated by the Greeks. Pythagoras coined the term philosophy.

Philolaus 390 B.C , another Ancient Greece philosopher and student of Pythagoras, promulgated the moveable spherical earth view. He believed that there is a “central fire” that everything else in the universe revolved around, including the moon, earth, and the other planets. However, in his theory, the “central fire” wasn’t the sun itself. The sun is said to have revolved around the “central fire”, as well.

Aristotle (384 – 322 BC)

Aristotle refused to buy the moveable earth idea but he was sold on the the fact that the Earth is a sphere. According to Aristotle, the shadow of the earth on the moon during an eclipse suggested that it was a sphere. Indeed, both Plato and Aristotle adopted the spherical earth notion but rejected the moveable earth tenet component. This muddled philosophy since Aristotle is one of the most quoted philosopher. This meant that Plato and Aristotle were endorsing aspects of the Pythagorean Cult: a spherical earth.

Aristarchus (310 BC –  230 BC)

Aristarchus, a Greek astronomer and mathematician, is famously known as the first person to have proposed the new heliocentric idea of the solar system – that the earth rotated and revolved around a stationary sun. Like Galileo many years later however, his sun centred ideas were dismissed as most people found it easier to believe the views of Aristotle and Ptolemy, that it was the earth that was at the centre of the solar system.

Eratosthenes (276 BC – 195 BC)

Aristotle’s confused view of a spherical but stationary earth prevailed until,
the father of Geography, Eratosthenes, became the first person to accurately calculate the circumference of the earth.  Fortunately or unfortunately, his ideas were not abound and Aristotle’s view was still preferred and continued for the next millennium, until the “trouble maker” Nicolaus Copernicus was born.

Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543) came on the scene and blurted, “We revolve around the Sun like any other planet.” He formulated a model of the universe that placed the Sun rather than the Earth at the centre of the universe and the world as not been the same since. Though similar to Pythagoras, Copernicus however, believed the planets orbit the sun and not a circle of fire.

Literature had it that Martin Luther (1483 – 1546), the founder of Protestant Christianity, commented on Copernicus’ theory that the Earth orbits the sun:

“This fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy; but sacred Scripture tells us that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and not the earth (Psa xciii. I). […] Who will venture to place the authority of Copernicus above that of the Holy Spirit?” Martin Luther, Quoted in Bertrand Russell (1946).  Science has since decided who was the fool. 

 

For meddling purposes, let’s share an alleged statement by Ferdinand Magellan (1480-1521), Portuguese navigator of the same period, who did not necessarily support the authority of the Church:

“The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the church” –

Image result for galileo truth

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) observation of Jupiter’s moons in 1610 confirmed the Copernican’s heliocentric view of the universe but it destroyed Aristotles geocentric cosmos and horrified the Church. He too was persecuted and he died under house arrest in 1642 after being arrested in 1633.

At about the same time, German mathematician Johannes Kepler was publishing a series of laws that describe the orbits of the planets around the Sun. Still in use today, the mathematical equations provided accurate predictions of the planets’ movement under Copernican theory.

In 1687, Isaac Newton put the final nail in the coffin for the Aristotelian, geocentric view of the Universe. Building on Kepler’s laws, Newton explained why the planets moved as they did around the Sun and he gave the force that kept them in check a name: gravity.

Well, the flat earth theory is still alive and has its following.

SPHERICAL EARTH: PERCEPTION AND PERSPECTIVE

After all that bookish meandering and heady stuff, it is timely to close this blong (blog long) on some more mundane and contemporary happenings. Albeit, still a bit controversial but easier to conceive and digest. Remember Aristotle’s tenet – it is all a matter of perception. Here goes:

  1.  Observing Lunar eclipses: Round shadow, round earth? 
Image result for lunar eclipse
“The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the church.” –Ferdinand Magellan (1480-1521) Portuguese navigator. This statement was in reaction to the dogma of the Vatican Church in the 16th century. As was seen, the flat geometric universe was more or less the “common sense” of the day.

A few folks such as Pythagoras and Aristotle, (570 – 495 BC) and (384–322 BC) respectively taught that the round shadow of Earth on the Moon during a lunar eclipse meant that the earth is a sphere. Aristotle supported his belief by observing “there are stars seen in Egypt and  Cyprus which are not seen in the northerly regions.” Since this could only happen on a curved surface, he believed the Earth was a sphere “of no great size, for otherwise the effect of so slight a change of place would not be quickly apparent.” (De caelo, 298a2–10).

Flat Earthers reasoned that the round shadow on the moon could be produced by a flat disc that always faces the Moon head-on during the eclipse. That is true, but the Moon is only rarely directly overhead during an eclipse and a given lunar eclipse is only visible from half of the Earth at a time.  Problem?

Nope, Flat Earthers dismiss this empirical evidence of the shadow by simply saying that the moon is a hologram and not a solid. By extension, the visits to the moon by the Soviet Union’s  unmanned Luna 2 mission on 13 September 1959, and the United States’  manned Apollo 11 mission on 20 July 1969 were impossible. Of course, January’s 2019 landing of an unmanned Chinese space craft on the far side of the moon was also a HOAX. Preposterous. It is simply a NASA conspiracy.

Suffice to say, not only did Galileo noticed the moons of Jupiter, he also saw mountains on the moon suggesting a solid.

  1. Visits to Antarctica as a tourist? Normal but expensive.

Related imageIt’s not a crazy idea? Simply put the craziest thing about going to Antarctica is the cold. Don’t be daunted by Flat-Earthers that claim Antarctica is a giant impenetrable icy wall encircling the Earth to keep us from falling off our disc-shaped world.

Antarctica is the world’s southernmost and 5th largest continent. It is bigger than the European Continent and twice the size of Australia.

Image result for antarctica marathon
Visit a Marathon. A 25-day expedition departing from London  by way of Buenos Aires is $42,450 and up. Sea cruises leave from Ushuaia in Argentina lasting anywhere between 10 days and 3 weeks costing US$6,000 per person for shared accommodation cabins. CLICK TO WATCH THE MARATHON

An interesting fact is that Polar bears live only in the Arctic, and penguins live only in the Antarctic. It is also where the South Pole is situated which has 6 months of sunshine and six months of darkness with only one sunrise and sunset per year.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Is surface circumnavigation of Antarctica really possible?

The Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition  of 2 March 1958 led by British Explorer Vivian Fuchs and New Zealander Edmund Hilary (the first man to climb Everest) successfully completed the first overland crossing of Antarctica via the South Pole.

 

Image result for The Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition
New Zealander Edmund Hilary (the first man to climb Everest) and British Explorer Vivian Fuchs completed the first overland crossing of Antarctica, via the South Pole, on the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition, 2 March 1958. He was however the third person to reach the South Pole. CLICK TO WATCH THE VIDEO.

Flat Earthers insist that no one has ever crossed Antarctica. They propose that the world is a north-pole-centered disc and Antarctica is an impenetrable ice wall that encircles the planet and hides any edges. The explanation is that east-west circumnavigation is simply moving around the disc in a circle. (This is true as East-West paths form a circle in both disc and spherical geometry).

 

However, Flat Earthers believe it is possible in the disc model to traverse the North Pole, but it is not possible to perform a circumnavigation that includes the South Pole, which it posits does not exist in any event.

The Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition  of 2 March 1958 provided empirical evidence that Antarctica is a continent that can be traversed via a south pole that exist. Also, since the 1500s, many people have sailed or flown completely around the world in all directions, and none have discovered an edge or impenetrable barrier. As seen above, even tourists go to Antarctica.

  1. There is a North and South Pole? True or False?

According to Flat Earthers, the South Pole does not exist. They do believe in a North Pole which is at the centre of the flat earth.  However, how can there be North and no South? Can there be up without down or top without bottom? Is it perspective or perception?

Indeed, the South Pole does exist. It is also known as the Geographic South Pole or Terrestrial South Pole. It is one of the two points where the Earth’s axis of rotation intersects its surface. It lies on the opposite side of the Earth from the North Pole, at the centre of the Southern Hemisphere, on the continent of Antarctica.

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Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station at Antarctica which was established in 1956 and has been permanently staffed since that year. WATCH VIDEO ON SOUTH POLE STATION

The south pole is the only inhabited place on the land surface of the Earth from which the Sun is continuously visible for six months and is then continuously dark for the next six months. The South Pole sees the Sun rise and set only once a year. 

 

 

 

 

  1. Satellites Pictures of the Earth. Fake News?

 

Image result for space station satellite pictures of the earth cuba
International Space Station picture showing Jamaica and Cuba. Is that a curved globe?

Satellites (Artificial) have been known to been in space and have taken mind boggling pictures suggesting a curved earth. Indeed, it was as early as October 4, 1957, that the Soviet Union launched SPUTNIK-1 into an elliptical low Earth orbit. This made its flight path to cover virtually the entire inhabited Earth. 

 

Flat Earthers say this is impossible as Artificial Satellites do not exist despite data showing that there are more than 40 countries have launched more than 4,000 satellites. According to Flat Earthers, GPS is operated by fibre optic cables running under the sea from continent to continent and by towers. There are no satellites. Fake News and conspiracy theory.

Claims by countries to have sent satellite into space is considered as conspiracy theory facilitated by NASA. One might understand NASA falsifying information but a conspiracy between the Soviet Union and NASA during the cold war era needs much thought.

SPHERICAL EARTH: HERETIC OR HEROIC? 

The Mesopotamia is considered as the cradle of civilization and our perception of the world is shaped by their culture. Sumer is also famed for being the home of occultism and mysticism. These meaningful yet satanic rituals were adopted by Egypt and the subsequent world powers, Babylon, Greece, Persia, Rome and the Anglo Saxons (Britain). The Hebrews were also tainted.

According to Aristotle and behavioural studies, our approach to life is basically perception: how we make sense of the world.  This is no easy task since the evolving of facts and the idea of an uncommon common sense make us note that even nonsense has sense in it. “Indeed, normal has become abnormal and abnormal has become normal”. By extension, today’s heresy can be tomorrow’s heroic deed.

Related image
Galileo: From heretic to hero and from villain to victim. He was persecuted by the Vatican Church for his observations of the moons around Jupiter which defunct the geocentric cosmos. In 1992, Pope John Paul II declared that the ruling against Galileo was an error resulting from “tragic mutual incomprehension.”

A great example was in 1992, when Galileo Galilei went from heretic to hero. Pope John Paul II declared that the ruling against Galileo was an error resulting from “tragic mutual incomprehension.” Seems Galileo was right all along: heliocentric universe?

 

Image result for galileo galilei truthThis embarrassing situation is creating a possible debacle for religion as we know it. It could affect the establishment’s need to keep people in line with dogma. The Church had argued that if the earth is not at the centre of the universe (geocentric) it could undermine the notion of man’s special relationship with god.  Also, since scripture seemed to support a fixed earth, any attempt to prove otherwise could make the earth seem insignificant.

Related imageThe critical thing to note is that the Truth exists and being special lies in the eyes of the beholder. Maybe, the time and effort being spent delving in astrology, science, metaphysics and religion could be best spent seeing that the hungry is fed; the naked clad and the sick given a bed. Man, be thy brother’s keeper.

Caveat Emptor: Let the buyer beware

Deception on Father’s Day 

I have a sad story to tell you. No, more like an unfortunate state of affairs to share or is it that I have an issue? Maybe, but  it is more like a complaint but then again, I don’t complain much. Do I? Hmmm, let’s just say, I have something to blog about. (The thesaurus is not working tonight so forgive me if the words don’t fit well).

Here is what happened. Not sure, if you were aware, but Sunday June 19 was designated Father’s Day. If you were not aware, it is okay. In fact every day is father’s day in my world but the recent custom seem to designate a Sunday in June as the day when we recognize “fathers” including the many super mothers who double as fathers because of DNA (Daddy Not Around). Many of my friends say Father’s Day is really a commercial thing but at least it gives some folks a chance to fuss about their dads and make them feel special. Hmm. Maybe we will consider a Son’s Day, Daughter’s Day, Wife’s Day, Husband’s Day etc.

You might be asking, what is my problem? Do I have a grouse with Father’s Day or what? What am I blogging about? Well. I don’t have a grouse with Father’s Day. It was what happened on Father’s Day that concerned me. You see, Father’s Day 2016 was sad, very sad. I had to choose between being sensitive about my friend’s emotions and being a real friend: talking the truth.

You see, many times we are misled and even taken advantage of by people and organizations that we would not, even for a minute, expect such behaviour from. The painful part is not that we got shafted as in life we can expect to get used, abused and refused. The hurtful part is when we are taken advantage of by someone we loved, respected and trusted. Yet, it is now so common to be ripped off that regrettably, abnormal has become normal. Figures dont lie  mark twain

Yes. It has become such a sport to “exploit” people that many individuals and organizations delve into the art and science of persuading and confusing. It is fun for some to get much from none. In Jamaica, we say “tricks in trade and mischievous in business” and in college we were taught that “figures don’t lie, but liars figure”.

Here is what happened. A friend of mine was telling me he got a big bottle of Motts 100% apple juice as a gift for Father’s Day.  Okay. Cool. So what? Well. You could see the gratification and pleasure on his face as this was the first gift he had got from his estranged son. According to him “It is years I have not had any real natural apple juice, and my boy bought me the real thing. I am so glad. I can’t afford it. Too expensive but it is worth every cent. 100% juice”.

Fooling some people sometimes

motts 100% 2You might be wondering what so sad about a son giving his dad a bottle of 100% Apple Juice on Father’s day. Even if it was given because of a ritual or commercial ritual, what’s sad about that? Isn’t the fact that he gave the gift of a 100% apple juice to his dad a glad thing? It might be feint and choreographed but he made his dad glad not sad on Father’s Day. Right?

True but here is the sad part. It is not so much Father’s Day or the gift. It was the deception.  You see, as I looked at the glee on his face, I found it hard to tell him it was mainly water that was in the bottle of Motts’ 100% Apple Juice. What? Now you see what I mean. The son passed off a drink of water and apple juice to his dad as a bottle of 100% Apple juice. By the way, the son didn’t knowingly passed it off. You see, he got hoodwinked by the supermarket where he bought it. What? Hoodwinked at a reputable supermarket? (There goes the lack of  thesaurus again).

Yeah, he was deceived. Should mention though that there is a high chance the supermarket was also deluded by the producer, in this case, Motts. What? The bottle of Motts 100% Apple Juice bought at the reputable supermarket was mainly water and Motts is to be blamed mostly. Well, to be honest, the government is in complicity directly or indirectly too.   Wait, is this some kind of conspiracy theory? The government is helping Motts to sell water as #100% juice? Explain that so a child can understand or else be careful. Please bear in mind that the bottle clearly state contains 100% Apple Juice and even elementary kids know that a 100% of something mean there is nothing else.

My point. That is the sad part and to be Frank or Honest or Clifton, that is the worrying part too. I hope you understand my dilemma. How does one tell a happy dad that his son bought him a bottle of water passed off as 100% apple juice? How does one explain that it is not his son’s fault but the producer’s, the supermarket’s and the government’s fault? How does one tell the truth and not have the truth provoke contentions and #startamovement?

Facing the music

Einstein dangerious worldMark you, I am not a trouble maker. I gave enough trouble as a child to serve me for two lifetimes for three persons, but as Albert Einstein once said, The world is a dangerous place; not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.

Actually, I am faced with this issue every day I go shopping. You see I am first and foremost a domesticated dad of a very talented debutant singer named Aneil (check her out aneilmusic.comAneil media Promo CD image) but I am also a marketer by profession and career. So on most occasions, I wear a cool cap as dad and a hot hat as a marketer. As a dad, I love shopping and as many parents know, shopping until you are dropping can be real fun.

However, as a marketer, when I am shopping and dropping I have no fun. Honestly, I feel like am being bowled over and floored and at times even feel as if I am being mauled at the Mall. (Oops , thesaurus again).

Back to my story, and the #100%juice. “I am not comfortable with folks selling my friends and me a bottle containing mainly water passed off as 100% juice for megabucks in reputable organizations made by reputable organizations. It borders on trickery, false, misleading and dishonesty.”

Facts Vs Figures

motts label

 

motts 100% 2

Look at the picture and as they taught us in law course, “res ipsa loquitor’ – the thing speaks for itself.

Yes, you see the 100% juice is noticeable, big, pronounced, bold, standing tall ..(sigh thesaurus again)  and can be seen from far away on the front. However, you have to literally drop to the ground to read the small print on the bottle, which is at the back of the bottle hidden from view that lists the contents as water, apple juice  concentrate and ascorbic acid. Wait a minute. The first ingredient is water in a bottle of 100% Apple Juice? What does this mean?

Let me quickly share a legal packaging requirement with you: Ingredients for a product should be listed in descending order with the ingredient that is the most in terms of volume, weight and size being listed first. Simply put, put the most first.  If water is listed first it means that water is the majority of the content. If apple juice is listed first it means that apple juice is the majority of the content. By extension, if apple juice alone is listed it means ALL of the content is a 100% juice.  Ask yourself the question: What is the case with the Motts 100% juice? Is apple the only thing listed as the ingredient?

Not saying Motts, is telling lies. Motts did say CONTAIN 100% juice, not that the entire bottle is 100% apple juice. Let’s look at it this way: if Motts pours 100% apple juice in the bottle to say a ¼ full and then pour in water for the other ¾, it would not have lied. The bottle does contain 100% juice, albeit, the entire content is not 100% juice. This should cover all legal requirements? Right?  Sigh. Liars can figure eh? Well. Hmmm.

Now you see what I mean about the government’s complicity due to the allowance of this technicality. Sigh, a ¼ bottle of juice and ¾ bottle of water can be sold as a bottle of 100% juice and priced as juice? Technically, the jury could still be out on this one but as  Nikola Tesla would say: ” is a beggar dressed in purple clothes and made king using dazzling mathematics that obscure truth”. Figures don’t lie but liars can figure.

IMG_20160716_150147
Took this picture with my phone at a supermarket in St. Andrew, Jamaica

Seriously now, who does that? You would be surprised. It is more like, who doesn’t do that. If you believe that Motts is the only “culprit” (thesaurus again), then you are wrong. A growing number of food and drink companies are labeling their products “all natural” or 100% juice in an attempt to attract health-concerned customers in order to improve their bottom line and get in the black. Do you feel deceived though?

 

Guilty as charged.

I was also looking at some of the shady guys or culprits that were caught and prosecuted. (Thesaurus again). It was surprising to find out that top brands such as Pepsi (Naked Juice), Kashi and General Mills were included.

Naked juice label
As a result of the law suit, Naked had to drop the ALL NATURAL claim. They still keep the 100% juice as there is no water in their product, unlike Motts.

In 2011, Naked Juice was forced to retract their claim that their juice was “100% fruit” and “all natural.” The juice company, owned by Pepsi, was actually including ascorbic acid and synthetic sources of fiber in their beverages — proving that “all natural” and #100%  can be fairly meaningless buzzwords.   The complaint points out that the “front-of-package promises that the product is ‘ALL NATURAL’ and ‘100% JUICE.’

It was held by the Court that a reasonable consumer would not assume that defendants were being deceptive and would not know to read the very-fine-print ingredient label.

PepsiCo Inc. agreed to settle for a $9 million lawsuit where each customer could receive up to US$75 in accordance to the company’s false, misleading and deceptive advertisements. Other companies, such as Kashi and General Mills Inc. faced an identical dispute for using GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, while claiming to be #100percent natural and containing no artificial ingredients.

So the sad thing about that Father’s Day scenario was that in 2016, one would hope that manufacturers and sellers are fair and honest and are respecting customers who they say is the KING. #Caveatemptor (let the buyer beware) should not be a rally cry for customers in modern times. After all, legislation such as the Fair Competition Act of 1993, consumer movements, discerning customers and competition should have forced sellers to recognize #caveatvenditor (let the seller beware).

So as you have seen, it wasn’t Father’s Day that was my issue. I had the dilemma of keeping quiet, not rock the boat and let my friend enjoy his “watery” bottle of 100% Apple Juice or tell him the truth and allow him to become distrustful of companies, supermarkets and government. Worse, turn him into an ardent advocate against false and misleading advertisement and he #startamovement. Sadly, it seemed I rocked the boat.

P.S. FEEL FREE. BE FREEMarcus garvey

Interestingly, today, August 1 is Emancipation Day in Jamaica. Emancipation Day is celebrated in many former British colonies in the Caribbean in recognition of the August 1, 1838 declaration by Britain to set the slaves “free”. “Free” borders on false or misleading but suffice to say  we do need to free the captive and their captors as both are in mental slavery. Marcus Garvey said it nicely in Nova Scotia in October 1937: “We are going to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery because whilst others might free the body, none but ourselves can free the mind. Mind is your only ruler, sovereign. The man who is not able to develop and use his mind is bound to be the slave of the other man who uses his mind….”

Niagara, Oh Niagara Falls (Your passion is wasting me away)

Notclif at Niagara Falls October 2011. The setting for his poem: "Oh Niagara"
Notclif at Niagara Falls October 2011. The setting for his poem: “Oh Niagara”

Charles Dickens visited Niagara Falls in 1841. On viewing the Canadian Falls from Table Rock he wrote, “Niagara was at once stamped upon my heart, an Image of Beauty; to remain there, changeless and indelible, until its pulses cease to beat, forever.”

I did my Christopher Columbus , late discovery but eye opening, of North America with my maiden trip to Florida, from Jamaica, In 1992. This was almost 500 years after Columbus’s discovery of the Americas. Yeah, Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas when he set his eyes on it while aboard his ships: the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa maria circa 1494. One of my favourite reggae singers, Burning Spear, did a song in which he called Christopher Columbus a “damn liar” for saying he discovered the Americas”. I am at pains to let them realize that, discover simply means to find out. Doesn’t mean he is the first one. Fact is, Chris discovered America in 1492, while the Indians did it a much earlier. For fun, see Burning Spear song, and his historical rebuttal of Columbus’ discovery claim. Simply click on the 500th Anniversary stamp to see video.

Fotos und Bilder zu Christophorus Columbus (24)

Anyway, back to Niagara, Oh Niagara, the main focus of this blog. For me,  I can say, I discovered North America in 1992 but it took almost 20 years before I graced my eyes on Niagara Falls. I could easily see why Charles Dickens got mesmerized. i was too. The water seem to be having fun rushing, tumbling, roaring, cascading, inundating the rocks as it heads down from lake Erie into Lake Ontario. There was an eerie note to it though. So pronounced was it, that i penned, or was it penciled or type, it into a poem. hmm. Whatever. Well, here is the poem I wrote, titled “Oh Niagara: Niagara Falls”. I hope you like it and the attempted review of it.

The love affair that results in the love's demise. Erosion of land has been a concern at the Niagara Falls
The love affair that results in the love’s demise. Erosion of land has been a concern at the Niagara Falls

Niagara, Oh Niagara Falls

Your waters on my cheeks continuously tumble down

Whether as dew on a smiling face or tears on a frown.

You are always rumbling, and frolicking with a thundering shout

Whether on show for many or even if no one is about.

The brown foam below Niagara Falls is a natural result of tons of water plummeting into the depths below. The brown colour is clay, which contains suspended particles of decayed vegetative matter, mostly from the shallow eastern basin of Lake Erie.
Notclif in cloak as the Falls tumble along. The brown foam below Niagara Falls is a natural result of tons of water plummeting into the depths below. The brown colour is clay, which contains suspended particles of decayed vegetative matter, mostly from the shallow eastern basin of Lake Erie.

Niagara, Oh Niagara Falls.

We, are a beautiful awesome sight to behold.

Whether morning or night, our passion for a wet noisy continuous flow never grows old

We are a thing of beauty, and a beautiful thing too with love as our tonic

Whether we agree or not, our passion is becoming chronic.

Niagara River

Niagara, Oh Niagara Falls

Your beauty and awe keep eating away at my soul

Whether it’s your strength or vigour or the stories untold.

Your passion has reached, has uncovered and gone beyond my deepest inner core

Whether sadly or gladly, if you continue loving me like this, I will be no more.

The poem, “Oh Nigara, Niagara Falls”  was trying to capture the passionate yet eerie feeling and outcome of a love affair that results in the demise of one of the lovers. The water while creating an awesome effect for the millions of onlookers  as it falls 170 feet (52 metres) into the Maid of the Mist pool from the Canadian Horseshoe Falls is eroding the land inch by inch.  At the American Falls, the water plunges vertically ranging from  70 to 110 feet (21 to 34 metres) to the rock  at the base of the Falls and is doing a similarly passionate job of eroding the land.

http://www.getalltravel.info/destinations/canada/niagara/interesting_things_to_know.html.

Niagara Falls ErosionAccording to Getalltravelinfo. Niagara Falls is a product of erosion. The force of the water tumbling over the Horseshoe Falls continually causes large sections of rock to erode and fall away.

More than 6 million cubic feet (168,000 cubic metres) of water go over the crest line every minute during peak daytime tourist hours. It is difficult to determine the depth of the water at the crest line due to various flows and conditions of the river.

The erosion is estimated at 1 foot (32 cm) approximately every 10 years. The hard top layer of dolomite limestone is underlain by softer layers of sandstone and shale. The tumbling waters cut away the shale and sandstone layers until the undermined top layer collapses, thus maintaining the vertical face of the Falls.

About 12,000 years ago, Niagara Falls was 7 miles (11 kilometers) downstream from its present position. Until the early 1950’s, the Falls eroded at the average rate of 3 feet (approximately 1 metre) per year.

By the way, the word “Onguiaahra” appears on maps as early as 1641. Both it and the later version “Ongiara” are Indian words generally interpreted as meaning “The Straight”, although the more romantic “Thunder of Waters” is sometimes given. By the time the first white man arrived at the Falls, the name in general use was “Niagara”.

Notclif ponders: should we turn our backs on passion or embrace it with passion?Notclif ponders: should we turn our backs on passion or embrace it with passion?

Interestingly, I was looking at the link and relationship between the Niagara River, the Niagara Falls and the bordering land between Canada and United States of America. One can sense the love, but the outcome while being awesome and scenic, over times leads to demise. The Niagara River seems to be the winner, followed by the land and the loser is the Fall. If the land continues eroding away, the Fall will be no more and the land would be flat. Niagara River and Land but no Falls. It definitely doesn’t seem like a symbiotic relationship. In a nutshell, the Niagara Falls, although the puissance and glory of the trio, will be a mist if not less.

Needless to say, if we are not careful, we will find our love affairs, jobs, social friendships, and even our lives being eroded by passions and addictions and cravings that we forged with glitter and glamour; yet as time goes on we realize that we are just being caressed and scraped by a friction that looks good in picture but inside it is life threatening. It seems the age old adage goes: not everything that glitters is gold. Have you ever wonder if your passion and love is making you feel “wasted away?”

You may get a free download of a collection of my 1983 poems ( I was 20 years old then).

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Hello world! Heights of great musicians were reached by craft or by chance?

Heights of great musicians reached - the beatles

Not many people have had great dreams of smallness. Yet smallness of dreams has had a great many people. In fact, great dreams, small dreams and even no dreams people have become great. Indeed, I am still not sure if heights of great musicians were reached by chance or by craft? I am here, rolling over these thoughts in my head as I watched my daughter recording her first international recording with the maestro, Grub Cooper of Jamaican Fame Fab Five Band in Kingston, Jamaica. The single “Let it be me”, is due for release in Mid 2015 and I was busily searching for answers: how can I help make her a great name in the music business.
Maybe, greatness happened because of luck or chance and not because of craft. No, don’t go yet, read on. Not saying Bob Marley and The Beatles and Featured imagethose greats didn’t have craft. On the contrary, they had lots of talent, industriousness, commitment and drive that pushed them against the odds even when, as Bob Marley said, in his hit song, I shot the sheriff, “Every time I plant a seed, he said kill it before it grows.”

Back to chance and success. What is chance? My Little Oxford Dictionary said Chance is “absence of design or discoverable cause.” So, it could be argued that if it was not for the chance (or was it by design) meeting up of The Beatles with Brian Epstein in 1961 and Bob Marley’s and the Wailers with Chris Blackwell in 1971, both could have remained as unknowns. Obscure. Do you know any talented musicians that are not great because of a lack of chance? Are there any popular musicians whose craft are terrible but they became great because of chance?
Goodness, my daughter has finished recording the song and I hope it becomes a hit. Five (5) hours run fast when your having fun or thinking hard. Nevertheless, the verdict is still out: greatness is a result of chance and or craft. Which is it really? Hung jury?

As we sat and listened the recording, everyone was happy with the production and was sure we have an international hit. However, there aren’t many guarantees, and as words to the wise: maybe we shouldn’t depend on our craft to get us a chance in life and similarly we shouldn’t depends on chance to get our craft in life. A good combination is a welcomed state. So while we are honing and developing our craft and music, we should also develop our social skills. After all, as can be seen, The Beatles and Bob Marley were good musicians but their success and greatness really got full bloomed when they met Brian and Chris respectively, who convinced them to change their images. So, do your craft and interact with people lots. Never can tell which will be your success ticket: craft or chance or both. Whatever you do, be happy.
On the note of happy, we would be happy if you checked out my daughter’s music at http://www.facebook.com/aneilmusic as we still try to pinpoint if heights of great musicians were reached by craft or chance.