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It is time to rethink democracy: Proposals for the protection and renewal of democracy ahead of US Summit for Democracy

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Former US vice president, Joe Biden announces he is running for president in 2020.

Following the conclusion of its Annual Policy Dialogue 2021 ‘Rethinking Democracy’, Club de Madrid, the largest forum of democratic former Heads of State and Government working to strengthen inclusive democratic practice, calls citizens and leaders to protect, nurture and promote democracy. In the Dialogue’s Concluding Document ‘Club de Madrid’s Commitment to Democracy’, the organization offers actionable proposals to ‘rethink’ democratic systems.

 

Twenty years after its foundation, Club de Madrid is set on changing the notion that democratic systems cannot deliver anymore. Lack of trust in institutions, increasing inequality, persistent patterns of social exclusion, self-serving elites, lower social mobility, political polarisation and rising authoritarian tendencies, are only some examples of the challenges confronting democracy worldwide. While all of it precedes COVID-19, the pandemic has exacerbated these challenges.

 

By organising this Policy Dialogue in collaboration with the Bertelsmann Stiftung and a wide array of partners including the Alfred Landecker Foundation, the German Federal Foreign Office, the Boston Global Forum and Spain’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and the EU, Club de Madrid presents a set of far-reaching proposals to adapt our leadership styles, information ecosystems and institutional settings to the realities of the 21st Century.

 

In the Dialogue’s Concluding Document, Club de Madrid reaffirms its conviction that liberal democracy is the best system of government. Club de Madrid welcomes the upcoming US-led Summit for Democracy and as a member of the Summit’s civil society working group on authoritarianism invites organisers to extend its objectives beyond the immediate geopolitical interests of any country.

 

The Concluding Document calls for the creation of an international peer-review mechanism on democratic practice and the appointment of a UN Special Rapporteur for Democracy. Democratic states and the international community must be more proactive in countering democratic backsliding and should act sooner at signs of concentration of power, erosion of the rule of law, attempts to undermine the judiciary, attacks on media and civil society organizations, among other authoritarian practices. Responding to democratic backsliding before it is too late requires early warning mechanisms followed by decisive action.

 

Contemporary authoritarianism is an existential test for democratic societies. To that end, Club de Madrid expresses concern over how illiberally inclined states increase their influence in regional and international organizations. Democracies should work together inopposing and countering interferences from authoritarian regimes – transnational repression, cyberattacks, disinformation, digital authoritarianism and economic coercion.

 

Democratic governments must work to make sure multilateral institutions reflect the values and principles of democracy, particularly fundamental human rights. Their promotion should be at the center of all domestic and foreign policy. Following this commitment, Club de Madrid asks democratic nations to tread carefully when engaging with authoritarian regimes, as the latter can often seek legitimacy and perpetuation by offering small concessions.

 

Corruption remains a dangerous threat. At a time of massive investment from COVID-19 recovery funds, governments must reaffirm their commitment to ending impunity for corruption offences. Club de Madrid’s Concluding Document calls for strengthening international cooperation in combating corruption and invites states to consider proposals for establishing an International Anti-Corruption Court.

 

Excessive polarisation and populist movements can cripple a democracy, endangering neutral political institutions and norms. Political nationalism and the increasing use of divisive rhetoric threaten democratic societies. It is important to prevent these from leading into any form of authoritarianism.

 

Club de Madrid encourages governments and international organisations to address unattended social problems fuelling polarisation. In line with UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres’ demands for a renewed social contract, Club de Madrid advocates for a 2025 World Social Summit to better advance the international development agenda.

 

Online disinformation and hate speech also drive and feed political polarisation. Democracies must establish information ecosystems that support a safe, healthy, and fully functioning society. The Concluding Document calls for democratic nations to support high-quality journalism, public interest media and radical transparency in the access to information. States should also work together to guarantee users’ rights and adopt rules that limit monopolistic practices of social media companies.

 

Responsible political leadership is crucial to combating democratic backsliding, so is corporate and civil society leadership. Club de Madrid sees the need for far-reaching changes in the culture and practice of leadership recruitment. There should be more emphasis on ethical convictions, integrity, commitment to the common good and team building.

 

Democracy also requires a culture based on principles and values. Club de Madrid calls on the establishment of civic education in early childhood, primary and secondary education to achieve greater civic literacy. Democracies should put forward mechanisms to build citizens’ capacity to engage in policymaking, particularly youth´s engagement in politics, including young women and girls, and the promotion of intergenerational dialogue.

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Splash House Announces Dates for 10 Year Anniversary Season

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Splash House Announces Dates for 10 Year Anniversary Season

For the last ten years, Splash House has continually redefined the summer festival, fostering a boutique experience in the heart of Palm Springs, ahead of its time music curation, and devout community. In celebration of this milestone, Splash House 2023 returns this summer for its second triple-weekender season June 9-11, August 11-13, and August 18-20.

The event has evolved from a renegade poolside weekender into one of the most in-demand dance music festivals in North America, all the while retaining a distinct sense of style rooted in the culture and allure of Palm Springs. Vast desert landscapes and unique accommodations at the Renaissance, Margaritaville, and Saguaro Hotels converge with fashion-forward audiences and forward-thinking musical bookings to create a new way to experience the travel hotspot.

In turn, Splash House has attracted a new generation of travelers to the desert city, which saw an economic impact of $6.7M per weekend from the three event weekends alone in 2022.

Chairman of PS Resorts Aftab Dada said on Splash House’s decade-long role in driving youth travel in the area, “Splash House is a home grown and incredibly successful music event for the City of Palm Springs and our destination. It has revitalized tourism in our slow summer months and attracted a younger generation. The festival is proof that Palm Springs is a destination for all ages”.

Scott White, President & CEO of Visit Greater Palm Springs added, “Splash House was a game-changer 10 years ago, attracting new visitors to Greater Palm Springs during our Summer months. We are excited about their continued success and the important economic impact this event has on our community”.

It remains the ease and comfort of the Splash House experience that makes it a favorite amongst its dedicated followers. All packages come with festival passes, a three-night stay at any of the three host resorts, and shuttle transportation between venues. Guests can relax in the comfort of a poolside room or catch their favorite artists from the balcony before making their way down to the dance floor.

At night, attendees can experience After Hours programming at the Palm Springs Air Museum while enjoying an open-air dance floor and witnessing artists perform alongside historic aircrafts, all backdropped by the San Jacinto Mountains.

As a barometer for what’s next in electronic music, Splash House has hosted acts like RÜFÜS DU SOL, Flume, and Classixx before they hit the world’s stage, alongside global selectors like The Blessed Madonna, DJ Harvey, Dom Dolla, TOKiMONSTA, Kaytranada, and more.

Presale passes and hotel packages for all three weekends will be available to purchase on Thurs, February 9 at 12PM PT. Those interested can register for the presale now on their site. Check out all pass types and hotel package options on splashhouse.com. Alumni Access returners get first access at hotel packages and passes and can check their status on the website. GA passes start at $165 + fees and hotel packages start at $1,000 + fees. Guests must be 21+ in order to purchase.

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Dreamville/Interscope Records Exec Produce “CREED III” Soundtrack — “Ma Boy” by J.I.D & Lute Out Now

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Dreamville will executive produce the official soundtrack to CREED III alongside Proximity Media (Ryan Coogler, Ludwig Göransson, Archie Davis), Outlier Society (Michael B. Jordan) and Executive Music Producer Frank Brim. The acclaimed franchise’s third installment was directed by Michael B. Jordan and will feature music from artists within the Dreamville roster and beyond. At store turn tonight, fans will receive a taste of what to expect from the sonic world of CREED III with the release of brand-new track “Ma Boy” featuring Dreamville’s J.I.D and Lute. To listen to the explosive new collaboration later tonight, pre-save the link here: https://dreamville.lnk.to/MaBoy
Dreamville/Interscope Records worked closely with the franchise’s producers MGM, Proximity and Outlier to create a musical experience that fit not just the film’s needs but one that will be celebrated as its own piece of art — inspired by both the film and the coming together of various artists on a soundtrack that matches the film’s acclaim and impact on community and culture. The soundtrack will be released on March 3rd on Dreamville/Interscope Records alongside the film’s theatrical release.
Founded by Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum hip-hop artist J. Cole in 2007, the organization is home to Dreamville Records, a critically acclaimed and commercially successful record label distributed in partnership with Interscope Records. Dreamville Records is currently home to a variety of both established and up-and-coming music artists, including J Cole, J.I.D, Ari Lennox, Bas, EarthGang, Cozz, Lute, and Omen. Dreamville has now evolved into the modern multidisciplinary entertainment and media company, Dreamville Ventures, which serves as the parent company to the aforementioned record label, as well as Studios, Apparel, Impact, and Festival divisions. As a diversified cultural hub, Dreamville continues to cultivate and create music, content, live events, and fashion as well as compelling ad campaigns with the industry’s biggest brands.
Combining the legacies of three of the most influential record labels in modern music history, Interscope Geffen A&M embarked on a new tradition of musical achievement with its unification on January 1, 1999.  Headed by Chairman and CEO John Janick, Interscope Geffen A&M is a major force in global music, developing chart-topping artists across a wide range of musical genres. Interscope Geffen A&M is part of Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company. www.interscope.com
 
Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM) is a leading entertainment company focused on the production and global distribution of film and television content across all platforms. The company owns one of the world’s deepest libraries of premium film and television content as well as the premium pay television network MGM+, which is available throughout the U.S. via cable, satellite, telco and digital distributors.  In addition, MGM has investments in numerous other television channels, digital platforms and interactive ventures and is producing premium short-form content for distribution. For more information, visit www.mgm.com.
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Attempted rape charge against Man Utd star Greenwood dropped

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MASON GREENWOOD

Charges of attempted rape and assault have been dropped against Manchester United footballer Mason Greenwood. (more…)

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Ne-Yo to pay ex-wife Crystal Renay nearly $2 million after finalizing divorce

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American Singer Ne-Yo‘s divorce from his ex-wife Crystal Renay Smith has just been finalized, and the terms call for him to keep 3 of their 4 homes along with a Bentley, all while paying his ex-wife a lot of money in real estate holdings, a new car, as well as child support and alimony. (more…)

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Missy Elliott makes history as first female hip-hop artist to be nominated in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

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Missy Elliott has made history after it was announced she will be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. (more…)

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Beyoncé ‘hopes to bring Renaissance tour to Ghana’ for rare Africa show

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Beyonce fans in Africa may not miss out on the Renaissance world tour entirely, as it’s claimed she’s in talks to bring the anticipated show to Ghana. (more…)

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