web analytics
a

Facebook

Twitter

Copyright 2015 Libero Themes.
All Rights Reserved.

8:30 - 6:00

Our Office Hours Mon. - Fri.

703-406-7616

Call For Free 15/M Consultation

Facebook

Twitter

Search
Menu
Westlake Legal Group > News Corporation (Page 378)

#MeToo Clashes With ‘Bro Culture’ at Ad Agencies

Westlake Legal Group 00ADSEXISM-01-facebookJumbo #MeToo Clashes With ‘Bro Culture’ at Ad Agencies Workplace Environment Women's Rights Women and Girls Hill Holliday discrimination Anomaly Advertising and Marketing #MeToo Movement

The empowerment of women was a major theme of Advertising Week, a yearly gathering of roughly 100,000 ad-industry people in New York. The female R&B group TLC kicked off the program with a concert called “Future Is Female,” and there were panel discussions with titles like “Mom Bosses,” “#RewriteHerStory” and “Time’s Up, Pay Up: We Will Not Wait 100 Years.”

The focus on women at the September conference ignited hope that the industry had learned something from the #MeToo movement. Then came closing night, with the rapper Pitbull taking the stage to perform the hit “I Like It.” Female dancers in revealing bodysuits surrounded him as he sang, “I ain’t playing with you, but I want to play with you.”

For the ad executive Heather DeLand, the Pitbull show was a sign that the industry had not really changed. “Who thought this would be a good idea?” she later told The New York Times. “Is this a tacky 2019 reboot of ‘Mad Men’?”

She was far from alone in feeling that the industry has not quite broken with its sexist past. Despite frequent criticism of gender imbalance in ad campaigns and the departures in recent years of several high-profile advertising executives, the business still rewards male executives who encourage or excuse inappropriate workplace behavior, and commercials promoting stereotypical images of women have not gone away.

A number of agencies have tried to address the concerns by signing on to diversity initiatives meant to improve gender and racial representation in ad campaigns and in the workplace, but their attempts have clashed with a workplace culture still fueled by testosterone and booze.

Creative teams are still led overwhelmingly by men, and women make up a third of chief marketing officers, although women and men join the industry in equal numbers, according to the trade groups She Runs It and the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising. The gender pay gap in marketing exceeds the average across other industries, according to Glassdoor.

The ad agency TracyLocke, which has done work for Pepsi and the rum brand Captain Morgan, signaled that it wanted to set itself apart by promoting “Feminist Fridays” on its social media accounts and hiring female illustrators to create portraits of famous women for a series called “Making Herstory.” But according to Karen Dunbar, who spent nearly three years in the Connecticut office as a freelance creative director and copywriter, it remains an uncomfortable place for women.

In a discrimination lawsuit filed against TracyLocke in June, Ms. Dunbar claimed that male colleagues referred to her as a “nagging wife,” suggested taping her mouth shut, threw papers in her face and rubbed her back in view of colleagues. She also accused Hugh Boyle, the company’s chief executive, of encouraging “male managers and subordinates to incorporate” a vulgar term for female genitalia “into their workplace dialogue.” (The suit has yet to be resolved.)

Teresa Brammer, the agency’s chief human resources officer, said that Ms. Dunbar’s accusations were found by external investigators to be without merit, adding that “there is no higher priority than creating a safe, fair and equitable workplace for our associates.”

Women at other agencies, even those that have created high-profile campaigns promoting diversity and equal treatment of men and women, said they still experienced the sexist treatment depicted on “Mad Men.” They described an industry steeped in “bro culture,” saying they are given nicknames like “the face” and “the body” and routinely passed over when it comes time to select who goes to conferences. Like their female predecessors from decades ago, they find themselves stuck on accounts for jewelry and beauty products.

Kate Catalinac, a creative director at BBDO, an international agency with headquarters in New York with clients including Alka-Seltzer, Ikea and Macy’s, said that a man working on the same account at another agency once told her he intended to rape her. She also recalled a client who offered her new luggage in exchange for sex. And she said she was asked “countless times” to arrange for coffee service during casting sessions by people who assumed she was not in a leadership role.

“Honestly, I have not seen change,” said Ms. Catalinac, who has worked in advertising 14 years.

Molly Dunn, a freelance brand strategist, said her 20-year career had been marked by repeated episodes of harassment, discrimination and retaliation. “Part of the problem with advertising is that there’s cachet in being like, ‘We’re all so cool, everyone’s O.K. with jokes about ridiculous things,’” she said. “It’s a lot of creative people, a lot of big egos, and there’s a huge allowance for bad behavior.”

Ms. Dunn said she was working in New York this year at Anomaly, an agency whose clients have included Coca-Cola and Beats by Dre, when she received an emailed invitation to a meeting in a space described as the “Taint Table.” “Taint” is slang for the perineum; the space linked two parts of the Anomaly office. Two other women, who described their experience at Anomaly on the condition that their names would not be used out of fear of professional repercussions, confirmed that people in the company used that term for the meeting space.

Anomaly, headed by a woman with a leadership team that is nearly 80 percent male, started an initiative last year called Unreasonable Equals. The goal: to improve gender equality in marketing and product design.

The company also helped Johnnie Walker mark Women’s History Month by replacing the male figure on whiskey-bottle labels with a new character, Jane Walker. The campaign won industry awards but drew mockery. The late-night host Stephen Colbert noted that “female drinkers everywhere will say, ‘Finally, a brand that’s condescending to me,’” and the actress Caitriona Balfe joked on Twitter that the whiskey was intended to be consumed “whilst sitting on a lady chair, in a lady room, which is part of a lady house, in a lady city, on a lady planet.”

Ms. Dunn said she believed her complaints about her colleagues’ use of the term “taint table” led Anomaly to end her contract early.

Karina Wilsher, the agency’s global chief executive, said in an email that Ms. Dunn’s contract “ended amicably, but came down to underperformance.” She added, “In the agency world today, there can often be noise and discontentment. Much of it is incredibly well-grounded and motivated by a genuine desire to advance the industry. In this case it is not.”

Ms. Wilsher conceded that the slang term for the meeting area was used by certain employees, but said it was not an official name. In June, Anomaly’s executive chairman, Carl Johnson, sent an email to employees telling them to avoid “stupid, offensive slang for meeting areas.”

In Richmond, Va., the Martin Agency, known for its Geico commercials, tried to reinvent itself after its longtime chief creative officer, Joe Alexander, left in 2017 amid reports of an investigation into multiple accusations of sexual harassment. The agency brought on its first female chief creative officer, Karen Costello, and first female chief executive, Kristen Cavallo, in its 53-year history.

“Obviously, there is a need for a new direction,” Ms. Cavallo said in a statement at the time. The agency has since said that it closed the wage gap between male and female employees and doubled the number of women on its board.

Mr. Alexander, the departed executive, has fought back, filing defamation lawsuits naming, among others, the Martin Agency and Diet Madison Avenue, an Instagram account that posted anonymous reports of sexual misconduct in the industry.

As ad agencies try to shed their sexist legacies, they are under pressure from some major clients to have more diversity in their ad campaigns and on their staffs. At the same time, some women have said that routine exposure to sexist workplace behavior caused them to leave the business.

Karen Kaplan, the chief executive of Hill Holliday, an agency based in Boston that has worked for clients including Bank of America, said the industry would continue to lose talented women if it did not change.

“We lost a lot of talent because of equity issues, and they don’t want to deal with that behavior again,” Ms. Kaplan said. “If we want to get them back, we are going to have to be very sensitive to what drove them out of the business to begin with.”

More than 20 agencies have sought certification from the 3% Movement, an organization that rates advertising companies on factors like turnover ratio by gender, parent support services and depiction of gender in ad campaigns.

Only seven agencies have passed, according to Kat Gordon, the organization’s founder. But one metric has improved in the past decade, she said: The number of women in top executive roles has “seen a dramatic uptick.”

Deidre Smalls-Landau is one of them. In August, she became the chief marketing officer in the United States for the marketing and media agency UM, which has created ads for Hulu and BMW.

“I would not say it’s been easy — I’ve almost always been the only one,” she said of being a black woman in a heavily white and male industry. “And when you’re the only one, you develop a very tough skin.”

Recently, Ms. Smalls-Landau said, there has been a “concerted effort” to improve diversity in advertising. UM is now 65 percent female, with more than 40 percent of its senior roles filled by women.

“We need to create a culture of belonging, where you don’t feel like you’re tolerated, but celebrated,” she said.

Mara Lecocq, who has worked in advertising for 13 years, said she started a database of female advertising workers called Where Are the Boss Ladies after realizing that she had never had a female supervisor.

“Agencies are giving us diversity inclusion initiatives,” she said, “but in a meeting, men will still talk over you.”

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

White Sox, Keuchel agree to $55.5M, 3-year deal

Westlake Legal Group Dallas-Keuchel White Sox, Keuchel agree to $55.5M, 3-year deal fox-news/sports/mlb/chicago-white-sox fox-news/sports/mlb fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8a8a1212-833c-5fae-bb82-e8769a0d5295

The Chicago White Sox and left-hander Dallas Keuchel have agreed to a $55.5 million, three-year deal, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Saturday night because the agreement had not been announced. Keuchel’s deal includes a vesting option for 2023 that would bring the total value to $74 million.

The 31-year-old Keuchel won the AL Cy Young Award with the Houston Astros in 2015 but struggled to find work last offseason as a free agent. He signed a roughly $13 million, one-year deal with the Atlanta Braves in June and went 8-8 with a 3.75 ERA for the NL East champions.

The long-bearded veteran joins catcher Yasmani Grandal as a big-money addition to the White Sox this offseason. Grandal signed a $73 million, four-year contract with Chicago last month.

The White Sox also brought back slugger Jose Abreu on a $50 million, three-year deal, acquired outfielder Nomar Mazara from the Texas Rangers and added lefty starter Gio Gonzalez on a $5 million, one-year contract that includes a 2021 option.

Keuchel and Gonzalez will join a rotation led by All-Star Lucas Giolito that also includes Reynaldo Lopez and Dylan Cease. Promising young right-hander Michael Kopech is also expected to return following Tommy John surgery.

Chicago is hoping to challenge in the AL Central behind a young core of hitters, including Yoan Moncada, Tim Anderson and Eloy Jimenez. Top prospect Nick Madrigal might also be ready to get significant time at second base. The White Sox were 72-89 last season, well behind the 101-win Minnesota Twins and 93-win Cleveland Indians.

Agent Scott Boras negotiated the deal for Keuchel and has earned his players $936.5 million in contracts this offseason, including a $324 million, nine-year deal between Gerrit Cole and the New York Yankees and $245 million, seven-year deals for Stephen Strasburg with the Washington Nationals and Anthony Rendon with the Los Angeles Angels. Boras is expected to clear the $1 billion mark this winter.

Westlake Legal Group Dallas-Keuchel White Sox, Keuchel agree to $55.5M, 3-year deal fox-news/sports/mlb/chicago-white-sox fox-news/sports/mlb fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8a8a1212-833c-5fae-bb82-e8769a0d5295   Westlake Legal Group Dallas-Keuchel White Sox, Keuchel agree to $55.5M, 3-year deal fox-news/sports/mlb/chicago-white-sox fox-news/sports/mlb fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8a8a1212-833c-5fae-bb82-e8769a0d5295

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

No. 20 Appalachian St. tops UAB 31-17 in New Orleans Bowl

Westlake Legal Group Thomas-Hennigan No. 20 Appalachian St. tops UAB 31-17 in New Orleans Bowl fox-news/sports/ncaa/uab-blazers fox-news/sports/ncaa/college-football-bowl-season fox-news/sports/ncaa/appalachian-state-mountaineers fox-news/sports/ncaa-fb fox-news/sports/ncaa fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8bdecaf3-baa5-5ac0-a66a-12a63555296c

Appalachian State running back Darrynton Evans turned a teammate’s fourth-down fumble into a 31-yard touchdown.

The Mountaineers added another fourth-down score when receiver Thomas Hennigan wrestled an under-thrown pass away from a UAB defensive back who tried to intercept it.

Those kinds of plays lifted No. 20 Appalachian State to a 31-17 victory over the Blazers in the New Orleans Bowl on Saturday night.

“We’re not going to play scared at Appalachian State,” newly promoted head coach Shawn Clark said. “We’re going to play aggressive and let the cards fall where they fall.”

The Mountaineers (13-1) scored twice in the third quarter on quarterback fumbles. Evans, who rushed for a 157 yards, scored his lone touchdown when quarterback Zac Thomas lost the ball on a fourth-and-1 sneak. The ball rolled back toward Evans, who cleanly scooped it, made a sudden move to his right and sprinted into the open field.

“It was just right place, right time,” Evans said.

Later, outside linebacker Nick Hampton stripped UAB quarterback Tyler Johnston, and inside linebacker Trey Cobb picked up the ball and returned it 24 yards to put Appalachian State in front 24-17.

“There was more crazy things that happened in this game than 10 games combined,” lamented UAB coach Bill Clark, calling the Appalachian State fumble that bounced straight back to Evans “pretty fluky.”

“Give their running back credit,” the UAB coach added. “He made a heck of a play.”

Johnston, making his first start since injuring his knee Nov. 2 at Tennessee, passed for 298 yards and two touchdowns for UAB (9-5), but also was intercepted once and sacked four times.

Listed by odds makers as 17-point underdogs, the Blazers raced to a 14-0 lead in the first five minutes, only to be outscored 31-3 after that.

“We started off fast,” Johnston said. “They brought more pressure in and I just kind of got a little frustrated.”

The game marked the head coaching debut for Appalachian State’s Clark, who took over after Eli Drinkwitz was hired by Missouri earlier this month. Clark is a former Appalachian State offensive lineman who’d been coaching the offensive line at his alma mater since 2016 — first under Scott Satterfield, who was hired away by Louisville in 2018.

Now, Clark is running a program that has a good chance to end the season ranked inside the top 20.

“If you cut me open, I bleed black and gold,” he said. “I’m here for the long haul. … I can’t wait to take this program places it’s never been before.”

Hennigan caught two touchdown passes for Appalachian State. The first came after UAB linebacker Jordan Smith was assessed a personal foul for leaping toward the line of scrimmage on Chandler Staton’s missed 48-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter. Just two plays after the drive-extending penalty, Thomas found Hennigan for a 17-yard TD that cut UAB’s lead to 14-10.

On his second touchdown, Hennigan had to rip Thomas’ 27-yard throw from cornerback Starling Thomas as both fell to the turf in the third quarter, widening Appalachian State’s lead to 31-17.

“I’m not the fastest guy; I haven’t ever been,” Hennigan said. “I’m not going to be strongest guy out there, but the reason I’m playing college football is making the tough catches.”

Zac Thomas finished with 142 yards and two TDs passing for the Mountaineers, who were the Sun Belt Conference champions and finished the season on a six-game winning streak.

Austin Watkins caught 10 passes for 159 yards and a touchdown for the Blazers, but most of that came on UAB’s first two possessions.

Watkins made a 35-yard catch on the first play of the game. That set up Johnston’s 25-yard pass to Hayden Pittman, who made a diving catch in the end zone to make it 7-0 a mere 1:14 after the opening kickoff.

Watkins, who entered the game needing 67 yards receiving to reach 1,000 for the season, surpassed that on his fourth catch, a 41-yard grab down the left side early in the Blazers’ second possession. Two plays later, Watkins had a 25-yard catch-and run for a touchdown to make it 14-0.

THE TAKEAWAY

Appalachian State: The Mountaineers overcame relative struggles on offense with opportunism and athleticism. Their ability to win comfortably after falling behind by two touchdowns demonstrated why they were among the strongest mid-major programs in the nation this season.

UAB: The Blazers, with only one prior bowl triumph in program history, opened with an intensity that showed how much this game mattered to them. They kept it close until late in the third quarter, when mistakes and some bad bounces caught up to them.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Appalachian State could move up a few spots, depending on subsequent bowl results, for its highest ranking this season.

UP NEXT

Appalachian State: Evans, Thomas and most other prominent players return to what will be a senior-laden squad looking to challenge for a New Year’s Day bowl under their new coach. They begin the season at home against Morgan State on Sept. 5.

UAB: The Blazers will carry high expectations into next season with a total of 18 starters coming back on offense and defense. They open with a Thursday night home game against New Mexico State on Sept. 3.

“We got almost this whole team back so they got high expectations for next year,” Bill Clark said. “We’re really excited about where our program’s headed.”

Westlake Legal Group Thomas-Hennigan No. 20 Appalachian St. tops UAB 31-17 in New Orleans Bowl fox-news/sports/ncaa/uab-blazers fox-news/sports/ncaa/college-football-bowl-season fox-news/sports/ncaa/appalachian-state-mountaineers fox-news/sports/ncaa-fb fox-news/sports/ncaa fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8bdecaf3-baa5-5ac0-a66a-12a63555296c   Westlake Legal Group Thomas-Hennigan No. 20 Appalachian St. tops UAB 31-17 in New Orleans Bowl fox-news/sports/ncaa/uab-blazers fox-news/sports/ncaa/college-football-bowl-season fox-news/sports/ncaa/appalachian-state-mountaineers fox-news/sports/ncaa-fb fox-news/sports/ncaa fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 8bdecaf3-baa5-5ac0-a66a-12a63555296c

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Christmas lottery ‘El Gordo’ reveals winning ticket in annual event

The world’s richest lottery electrified Spain on Sunday morning as the raffle — known as El Gordo, or “The Fat One” — dished out its biggest prize for its annual Christmas raffle.

Winning ticket No. 26590, worth 400,000 euros (or $436,000), tumbled out of a huge shuffling bin during a televised event at the Teatro Real opera house in Madrid. Students from the city’s San Ildefonso school picked out the winning lottery numbers.

LAWYER FOR WINNER OF $1.5B LOTTO STEPS FORWARD, SAYS WINNER ALLOWED ANOTHER CUSTOMER TO CUT LINE BEFORE PURCHASE

The top prize is one of several prizes that the lottery is giving out this year, totaling 2.24 billion euros, or $2.43 billion. The winners of the top ticket won 20,000 euros for each euro spent on a 20-euro ticket.

Westlake Legal Group AP-El-Gordo Christmas lottery 'El Gordo' reveals winning ticket in annual event Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/spain fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/world-regions fox news fnc/world fnc d03a0934-f908-5c4e-ae0c-b919ee729f39 article

Spain’s Christmas lottery, known as El Gordo or “The Fat One,” dished out its biggest prize on Sunday worth $436,000. In total, the lottery dishes out $2.43 billion in prizes. (AP Photo/Paul White)

While other lotteries have bigger top prizes than $436,000, this lottery — held on Dec. 22 each year — is ranked as the world’s richest for the total amount of prize money involved.

El Gordo is the second-oldest lottery in the world, according to Spain’s The Local news outlet, which explains that only certain lottery shops sell certain lottery numbers. It’s because of this that most big winners of the lottery are located in the same area of Spain.

OREGON STORE EMPLOYEES DIG THROUGH TRASH TO HELP FIND WINNING $1,200 LOTTERY TICKET

Because so many people play the Christmas game, “numbers are repeated up to 165 times,” the website states. “That means if you do win El Gordo, you will be sharing your prize with at least 164 others.”

Westlake Legal Group AP-El-Gordo-2 Christmas lottery 'El Gordo' reveals winning ticket in annual event Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/spain fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/world-regions fox news fnc/world fnc d03a0934-f908-5c4e-ae0c-b919ee729f39 article

Pictured here is a Christmas lottery number seller putting tickets on display in Madrid, Spain, on Saturday ahead of the drawing Sunday. (AP Photo/Paul White)

Families, friends and co-workers often buy tickets together as part of a winter holiday tradition. Then on Dec. 22, they gather around their television sets, radios or mobile phones, waiting to hear the winning lottery numbers.

This year, the winning tickets were sold in the northeastern provinces of Tarragona and Barcelona, in central Madrid and Salamanca, and in southern Alicante, Murcia and Seville. Dona Manolita, a location that’s sold lottery numbers for more than 100 years, was among the winning vendors.

“I’m very happy. We have worked all year to achieve this. This is our reward, to sell ‘El Gordo’,” an employee told Reuters after the drawing.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Winners of the top prize will pay 76,000 euros ($84,000) in taxes. Prizes up to 20,000 euros ($22,000) are exempt from taxes.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP-El-Gordo-2 Christmas lottery 'El Gordo' reveals winning ticket in annual event Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/spain fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/world-regions fox news fnc/world fnc d03a0934-f908-5c4e-ae0c-b919ee729f39 article   Westlake Legal Group AP-El-Gordo-2 Christmas lottery 'El Gordo' reveals winning ticket in annual event Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/spain fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/world-regions fox news fnc/world fnc d03a0934-f908-5c4e-ae0c-b919ee729f39 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Rep. Matt Gaetz on impeachment battle: ‘The whole deal was driven for television consumption’

Westlake Legal Group gaetz-and-Jeanine- Rep. Matt Gaetz on impeachment battle: 'The whole deal was driven for television consumption' Talia Kaplan fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/newsedge/politics fox news fnc/media fnc e92ab69f-6347-5d4d-9a28-7df922dafbe3 article

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., said on “Justice with Judge Jeanine” on Saturday night that everything House Democrats did regarding President Trump’s impeachment “was driven for television consumption because they had no actual evidence.”

Without any Republican support, the House on Wednesday night voted to impeach President Trump for “abuse of power” and “obstruction of Congress” related to his dealings with Ukraine, making Trump the third American president ever to be impeached.

On Saturday, hours before Gaetz made the statement on “Justice with Judge Jeanine,” Trump mocked House Democrats during a Turning Point USA event in West Palm Beach, Fla., for voting to impeach him without providing any evidence of a crime.

TRUMP BLASTS HOUSE DEMOCRATS OVER IMPACHMENT: ‘THEY HAD NOTHING, THERE’S NO CRIME’

Gaetz echoed the president’s sentiment on Saturday night, telling host Jeanine Pirro, “The radical left Democrats filled the stockings of their anti-Trump base with rumor and innuendo and ultimately impeachment. But, the rest of America — we just got a lump of coal.”

“We didn’t get an infrastructure bill, we didn’t get reform to our asylum systems because [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi has been planning this impeachment since the moment she took power. Matter of fact, Jerry Nadler, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, even campaigned to his fellow Democrats on the notion that he would be the person to bring us to this point.”

“But the real question is why Democrats fail to meet the standard they set for themselves. They promised us a bipartisan impeachment. In reality, the only bipartisan vote was a bipartisan vote against impeachment,” Gaetz, who sits on the House Judiciary Committee, continued.

JEFF FLAKE CLAIMS SENATE REPUBLICANS, NOT JUST TRUMP, ARE ON TRIAL

“They promised us that these hearings would animate a lot of public support for impeachment and we haven’t seen that either. The American people hate this and if Congress continues it they may end up hating us.”

Pelosi, D-Calif., has not yet transmitted the articles of impeachment to the Senate, indicating she wants reassurances that the Senate would hold a fair trial, likely involving certain Democrat-sought witnesses, before sending over the charges.

Trump has called for an immediate trial, where he expects to be acquitted for the alleged crimes surrounding his efforts to pressure Ukraine to launch politically advantageous investigations. The request came after the administration had withheld millions in military aid to Ukraine, though Trump has denied any quid pro quo was at play.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“Democrats failed to produce direct evidence, they failed to get the public on their side, there was no quid pro quo; matter of fact, the only direct evidence was the president saying he did not want anything other than [Ukrainian] President Zelensky to do the right thing, to do the work he had campaigned on,” Gaetz told Pirro. “So if I were in the Senate, I’d be looking to get this nonsense behind us and get on to the work of the Trump agenda.”

Fox News’ Nick Givas, Marisa Schultz, Brooke Singman and Gregg Re contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group gaetz-and-Jeanine- Rep. Matt Gaetz on impeachment battle: 'The whole deal was driven for television consumption' Talia Kaplan fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/newsedge/politics fox news fnc/media fnc e92ab69f-6347-5d4d-9a28-7df922dafbe3 article   Westlake Legal Group gaetz-and-Jeanine- Rep. Matt Gaetz on impeachment battle: 'The whole deal was driven for television consumption' Talia Kaplan fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/newsedge/politics fox news fnc/media fnc e92ab69f-6347-5d4d-9a28-7df922dafbe3 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Female darts star beats a 2nd man at PDC World Championship

Westlake Legal Group Fallon-Sherrock Female darts star beats a 2nd man at PDC World Championship fox-news/sports fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article a7ed3939-e464-5761-8402-71ab6566b85a

Fallon Sherrock put her right hand over her mouth in sheer astonishment as a raucous darts crowd celebrated behind her.

Another wild night, another stunning win for the Queen of Alexandra Palace.

Four days after becoming the first female darts player to beat a man at the PDC World Championship, she did it again Saturday – this time eliminating No. 11-ranked Mensur Suljovic with a 3-1 win in the second round.

The 25-year-old Englishwoman c linched victory against Suljovic by hitting a bullseye.

“I’m still waiting for it all to sink in,” said Sherrock, a one-time professional hairdresser who first picked up a dart when she was aged 17. “I don’t know how I’m going to sleep tonight.”

Now she believes she can go all the way.

When asked if she could win the tournament, Sherrock said: “Why not? I have won two games, I am just going to take each game as it comes but there is nothing to say that I can’t. I am going to try.

“I have just proved that we (women) can beat anyone. I have beaten two of the best players in the world. If that doesn’t show that women can play darts, I don’t know what does.”

Sherrock, a former runner-up at the women’s world championship, will play Chris Dobey in the last 32.

Organizers decided for the first time last year to allocate two of the 96 places in the world championship field to women. Previously, women could attempt to qualify for the event, but now spots are guaranteed.

Women’s world champion Mikuru Suzuki took James Richardson to a sudden-death leg in the fifth set before losing on Monday.

Three other women – Gayl King, Anastasia Dobromyslova and Lisa Ashton – have previously played matches at a PDC World Championship. They all lost in the first round

Sherrock is guaranteed to win at least 15,000 pounds (nearly $20,000) after beating Suljovic, who congratulated his opponent before quickly exiting the stage. The Austrian has won multiple tournaments in his career, is a former World Matchplay runner-up, and has been in the last 16 at the world championship three times.

After her first win this week, Sherrock became an overnight celebrity, appearing on some of the biggest TV and radio shows in Britain and getting a blue tick next to her name on her Twitter account.

Sherrock developed a serious kidney condition after giving birth to her son, Rory, five years ago. She had to take medication and one of the side-effects was the swelling of her face, which led to her receiving abuse online for her appearance. She says she drinks water on stage during matches to flush out her kidneys.

Westlake Legal Group Fallon-Sherrock Female darts star beats a 2nd man at PDC World Championship fox-news/sports fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article a7ed3939-e464-5761-8402-71ab6566b85a   Westlake Legal Group Fallon-Sherrock Female darts star beats a 2nd man at PDC World Championship fox-news/sports fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article a7ed3939-e464-5761-8402-71ab6566b85a

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Pence chief of staff not worried about Pelosi impeachment tactics: ‘She will yield’

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6117641792001_6117641650001-vs Pence chief of staff not worried about Pelosi impeachment tactics: 'She will yield' Ronn Blitzer fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc article 746e6440-7d4e-59e8-a555-23c07c3a2c2f

Marc Short, chief of staff to Vice President Pence, showed confidence in the face of the current impeachment strategy being employed by House Democrats led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, stating that, ultimately, he believes they will be the first ones to budge and move what he called a “political exercise” closer to its conclusion.

Pelosi and most of the other Democrats in the House approved two articles of impeachment against President Trump last week for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, yet they have sat on those articles instead of delivering them to the Senate for a trial. Pelosi has claimed that she is waiting for the Republican-controlled Senate to set the process for the trial before she appoints impeachment managers. Meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., pushes for the ability to issue subpoenas for additional witnesses and documents.

TRUMP BLASTS HOUSE DEMOCRATS OVER IMPEACHMENT: ‘THEY HAD NOTHING, THERE’S NO CRIME’

“I think her position is really untenable,” Short told “Fox News Sunday,” later predicting, “She will yield, there’s no way she can hold this position.”

Short also questioned why Democrats feel the need to include additional witnesses in the first place, given the swift and decisive nature of the impeachment itself.

“If her case is so airtight that she said, that she had to ram it through and it’s undeniable, why does she need more witnesses to make her case?” he asked.

Ultimately, Short said he thinks the impeachment is “a political exercise to placate the radical left of their base,” and that it is “going nowhere.”

JEFF FLAKE CLAIMS SENATE REPUBLICANS, NOT JUST TRUMP, ARE ON TRIAL

Later in the program, Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., addressed the delay in the delivery of the articles of impeachment, claiming that while she does not know what the House’s time frame will be, the present timeline is nothing out of the ordinary.

She pointed out that President Bill Clinton was impeached on Dec. 19, and the House did not appoint their managers until Jan. 6, after Congress returned from the holiday break. She does not believe the current Senate would move any faster, regardless of how quickly the House moved.

“Did you really think the United States Senate was going to start this trial before January 6?” she asked.

Host Chris Wallace pointed out that Pelosi is hoping to use her delay to give Shumer leverage in his discussions with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who has accused Pelosi of having “cold feet.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Dingell responded to that by criticizing McConnell, who has stated that he is “not an impartial juror.”

“I don’t call that a fair and impartial hearing,” she said.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6117641792001_6117641650001-vs Pence chief of staff not worried about Pelosi impeachment tactics: 'She will yield' Ronn Blitzer fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc article 746e6440-7d4e-59e8-a555-23c07c3a2c2f   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6117641792001_6117641650001-vs Pence chief of staff not worried about Pelosi impeachment tactics: 'She will yield' Ronn Blitzer fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc article 746e6440-7d4e-59e8-a555-23c07c3a2c2f

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

At Boeing, C.E.O.’s Stumbles Deepen a Crisis

Westlake Legal Group 21boeing-sub-facebookJumbo At Boeing, C.E.O.’s Stumbles Deepen a Crisis Southwest Airlines Company Shutdowns (Institutional) Regulation and Deregulation of Industry Muilenburg, Dennis A Federal Aviation Administration Boeing Company Boeing 737 Max Groundings and Safety Concerns (2019) Airlines and Airplanes

In a tense, private meeting last week in Washington, the head of the Federal Aviation Administration reprimanded Boeing’s chief executive for putting pressure on the agency to move faster in approving the return of the company’s 737 Max jet.

This was the first face-to-face encounter between the F.A.A. chief, Stephen Dickson, and the executive, Dennis A. Muilenburg, and Mr. Dickson told him not to ask for any favors during the discussion. He said Boeing should focus on providing all the documents needed to fully describe the plane’s software changes according to two people briefed on the meeting.

It was a rare dressing-down for the leader of one of the world’s biggest companies, and a sign of the deteriorating relationship between Mr. Muilenburg and the regulator that will determine when Boeing’s most important plane will fly again.

The global grounding of the 737 Max has entered its 10th month, after two crashes that killed 346 people, and the most significant crisis in Boeing’s history has no end in sight. Mr. Muilenburg is under immense pressure to achieve two distinct goals. He wants to return the Max to service as soon as possible, relieving the pressure on Boeing, airlines and suppliers. Yet the company and regulators must fix an automated system known as MCAS found to have played a role in both crashes, ensuring the Max is certified safely and transparently. Caught in the middle, Mr. Muilenburg has found himself promising more than he can deliver.

After the crashes, but before the plane was grounded, Mr. Muilenburg called President Trump and expressed confidence in the safety of the Max. He has repeatedly made overly optimistic projections about how quickly the plane would return to service, pushing for speedy approval from regulators. The constantly shifting timeline has created chaos for airlines, which have had to cancel thousands of flights and sacrifice billions of dollars in sales.

In his few public appearances, Mr. Muilenburg’s attempts to offer a sincere apology for the accidents have been clumsy, prolonging Boeing’s reputational pain. His performance has left lawmakers irate. The families of crash victims, convinced the company does not care about their loss, have repeatedly confronted him with posters of the dead.

The missteps led Boeing to one of the most consequential decisions in its 103-year history, when it announced on Monday that it was temporarily shutting down the 737 factory, a move that has already begun rippling through the national economy.

The Max is Boeing’s best seller, with tens of billions of dollars in future sales at stake. Boeing stock has fallen by 22 percent in this crisis, costing the company more than $8 billion and spreading pain throughout a supply chain that extends to 8,000 companies. On Friday, Spirit AeroSystems, which makes the Max fuselage, said it would stop production of the part next month.

“Throughout this process our No. 1 priority has been safety,” Gordon Johndroe, a Boeing spokesman, said in a statement. “We have learned a lot this year and our company is changing.”

Last week, when Mr. Trump called Mr. Muilenburg to discuss Boeing’s problems, the chief executive assured the president that a production shutdown would only be temporary.

But Boeing still faces serious hurdles. The company has not delivered a complete software package to the F.A.A. for approval. In recent simulator tests, pilots did not use the correct emergency procedures, raising new questions about whether regulators will require more extensive training for pilots to fly the plane or whether the procedures needed to be changed, according to two people briefed on the matter.

And on Friday, a new space capsule Boeing designed for NASA failed to reach the correct orbit, another blow to company morale and a setback for the United States space program.

“If it was my call to make, Muilenburg would’ve been fired long ago,” Rep. Peter DeFazio, Democrat of Oregon and the chairman of the House Transportation Committee investigating Boeing, said in an email. “Boeing could send a strong signal that it is truly serious about safety by holding its top decision-maker accountable.”

From the earliest days of the grounding in March, shortly after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and months after the first Max crash, off Indonesia, Mr. Muilenburg tried to put the episode behind him as swiftly as possible, telling airlines it would last just weeks.

“By the time April rolled around, Boeing was telling us next week, next month,” Gary Kelly, the chief executive of Southwest Airlines, said in an interview. “We were a week away, weeks away, three weeks away.”

That misplaced optimism made it impossible for airlines including Southwest, which is Boeing’s biggest 737 customer, to reliably plan their routes. “It was really creating havoc,” Mr. Kelly said.

In August, regulators from Europe, Canada and Brazil flew to Seattle and joined F.A.A. officials for a meeting with Boeing. They were expecting to review reams of documentation describing the software update for the Max. Instead, the Boeing representatives offered a brief PowerPoint presentation, in line with what they had done in the past. The regulators left the meeting early.

“We were looking for a lot more rigor in the presentation of the materials,” said Earl Lawrence, the head of the F.A.A.’s aircraft certification office. “They were not ready.”

With delays mounting, Mr. Muilenburg missed a chance to smooth things over with key customers. In September, he attended a gathering of a club of aviation executives called Conquistadores del Cielo at a ranch in Wyoming, according to two people familiar with the trip. As the group bonded while throwing knives and drinking beers, Mr. Muilenburg took long bike rides by himself. It was typical behavior for Mr. Muilenburg, an introverted engineer who prefers Diet Mountain Dew to alcohol, but it left other executives baffled.

October brought a string of bad news for Mr. Muilenburg. The board stripped him of his title as chairman, a stinging rebuke of his leadership. The decision, the board said, would allow him to focus on the single most important job at the company: bringing the Max back to service.

About two weeks before Mr. Muilenburg testified in front of Congress for the first time, the company disclosed to lawmakers instant messages from 2016 in which a Boeing pilot complained that the system known as MCAS, which was new to the plane, was acting unpredictably in a flight simulator. Boeing discovered the instant messages in January, but Mr. Muilenburg did not read them at the time, instead telling the company’s legal team to handle them.

The messages included the pilot saying he “basically lied to the regulators (unknowingly).”

When Mr. Dickson learned of the messages in October, he sent a one-paragraph letter to Mr. Muilenburg demanding an explanation for “Boeing’s delay in disclosing the document to its safety regulator.”

Mr. Muilenburg and Mr. Dickson, who took over the F.A.A. this summer, spoke for the first time later that day. Mr. Muilenburg said Boeing hadn’t told the F.A.A. about the messages out of concern that doing so would interfere with a criminal investigation being conducted by the Justice Department, according to two people briefed on the call.

Mr. Dickson said the lack of transparency would only increase the regulator’s scrutiny of the company.

Still, Mr. Muilenburg continued to project confidence, telling investors on an earnings call in October that he expected regulators to begin approving the Max by the end of the year. The company had just fired Kevin McAllister, the chief executive of Boeing’s commercial division who had been overseeing work on the Max.

Despite Mr. Muilenburg’s assurances, airline discontent was growing. The next day, American Airlines joined a chorus of Boeing customers complaining about the growing costs of the Max crisis. Doug Parker, American’s chief executive, said on a call with investors that he was working to “ensure that American is compensated for the lost revenue that the Max grounding has caused, the missed deadlines and extended grounding.”

“We’re working to ensure that Boeing shareholders bear the cost of Boeing’s failures,” Mr. Parker added. “Not American Airlines’ shareholders.”

In two days of congressional hearings at the end of October, Mr. Muilenburg faced withering criticism from lawmakers, who told him to resign or take a pay cut. Mr. Muilenburg said it was up to the board to make decisions about his multimillion-dollar compensation. He invoked his upbringing on an Iowa farm so many times that he elicited jeers from family members of crash victims who were present.

In an interview on CNBC after the hearings, the chairman of Boeing’s board, David Calhoun, said the board was confident in its chief executive.

“From the vantage point of our board, Dennis has done everything right,” Mr. Calhoun said. “If we successfully get from where he started to where we need to end up, I would view that as a very significant milestone and something that speaks to his leadership and his courage and his ability to execute and get us through this.”

Mr. Muilenburg continued to press the F.A.A. In early November, he called Mr. Dickson to ask whether he would consider allowing the company to begin delivering airplanes before they were cleared to fly. The administrator said he would look into it but made no commitments, according to an F.A.A. spokesman.

In an apparent misunderstanding, Mr. Muilenburg took the call as a green light. The next Monday, the company put out a statement saying it could have the plane to customers by the end of the year.

Mr. Dickson told colleagues that he had not agreed to that timeline and felt as though he was being manipulated, according to a person familiar with the matter. That week, he put out a memo and a video urging employees to resist pressure to move quickly on the Max approval.

This month, anxiety levels rose at Boeing’s factory in Renton, Wash. Several key tests had not yet been completed, and European regulators would soon leave work for the holidays and not return until the beginning of January. In calls with F.A.A. officials, Boeing engineers began to float an idea for speeding the process: Perhaps the company should ask the agency to break with its foreign counterparts and approve the Max alone?

The suggestion alarmed some F.A.A. officials, who worried that approving the Max without agreement from other regulators would be untenable, according to two people familiar with the matter. When they called Mr. Dickson to tell him of Boeing’s plans, he balked at the suggestion and eventually the company backed down.

A week later, Mr. Dickson brought Mr. Muilenburg into the agency’s Washington headquarters for their first in-person meeting.

There, Mr. Dickson said he had done the math, and there was no way the Max could fly by the end of the year.

When Mr. Muilenburg brought up the logistics of delivering Max jets to customers, Mr. Dickson would not discuss the issue, two people familiar with the matter said. Boeing’s representatives said they might need to consider temporarily shutting down production. Mr. Dickson told them to do what they needed to do, saying the agency was focused on conducting a thorough review.

Four days later, Boeing announced it would bring the 737 factory to a halt. There was no discussion of removing Mr. Muilenburg as chief executive at last week’s board meeting in Chicago where the shutdown was debated, according to three people briefed on the meeting.

The challenges facing Mr. Muilenburg extend beyond returning the Max to service and the botched space capsule launch on Friday. The F.A.A. is aware of more potentially damaging messages from Boeing employees that the company has not turned over to the agency. Other important planes are behind schedule. New defects have been found on older models of the 737. Boeing lost two major pieces of business to Airbus, its European rival, this month.

“This hasn’t been their best and finest hour,” said Mr. Kelly, the Southwest Airlines chief executive. “There’s mistakes made and they need to address those.”

With the first anniversary of the Ethiopian accident approaching in March, Boeing recently asked a representative for the families of crash victims if it would be appropriate for Mr. Muilenburg to attend the memorial. They said no.

“He is not welcome there,” said Zipporah Kuria, whose father, Joseph Waithaka, was killed in the second crash. “Whenever his name is said, people’s eyes are flooded with tears.”

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

This is the most popular cartoon car of all time

Flying cars are still dream machines.

Westlake Legal Group jetsons-Getty This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

(Getty Images)

A new survey of more than 2,000 Americans by British license plate trading firm click4reg.co.uk found that, given their pick of cartoon vehicles, 57 percent would take George Jetson’s flying car for a spin.

Westlake Legal Group scooby-doo-Warner-Bros This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

(Hanah-Barbera)

Second on the list is The Mean Machine from “Wacky Racers,” which can also fly thanks to its rocket propulsion. The vehicle was tied at 48 percent with Scooby-Doo’s very down-to-earth Mystery Machine.

The Batmobile featured in “Super Friends” came in third with 43 percent interest, ahead of the horrifying Homer, which was designed by Homer Simpson and depicted as a massive commercial failure that put his half-brother’s car company out of business.

Westlake Legal Group home This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

The results continued with Inspector Gadget’s feature-filled sports car and Lightning McQueen from the film “Cars,” the latter of which is sentient and doesn’t really have space for passengers, so that’s just kind of weird.

Westlake Legal Group flinstones-car This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

(Hanah-Barbera)

The rock and wood Flintmobile from The Flintstones came in a disappointing eighth, considering how famous it is, but since it requires foot power and has stone tires it doesn’t exactly come off as the ultimate driving machine.

Westlake Legal Group cars-cartoon This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

(click4reg.co.uk)

The VW Beetle version of the Transformer Bumblebee and “The Real Ghostbusters” Ecto-1 rounded out the top 10.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Westlake Legal Group jetsons-Getty This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article   Westlake Legal Group jetsons-Getty This is the most popular cartoon car of all time Gary Gastelu fox-news/auto/attributes/collector-cars fox news fnc/auto fnc f8834f36-b4bc-5a02-a851-bb69a0d18549 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

Westlake Legal Group santaschool1_slide-fb83017698a64070703841f3d1c59f2bb9227bb0-s1100-c15 Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

Dressed as Santa, Tim Zander gives pointers on how to be the perfect Santa to applicants at a workshop run by Weihnachtsmann2Go (Santa2Go). Rob Schmitz/NPR hide caption

toggle caption

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Westlake Legal Group  Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

Dressed as Santa, Tim Zander gives pointers on how to be the perfect Santa to applicants at a workshop run by Weihnachtsmann2Go (Santa2Go).

Rob Schmitz/NPR

At a workshop in Berlin, Santa arrives to train a handful of apprentices how to act like him. “From out of the forest I appear, to proclaim that Christmastime is here!” he exclaims.

Santa — real name Tim Zander — wears a long, red robe and matching hat, and he pulls on his beard slowly as he recites a traditional poem. He then segues into pointers on how to channel one’s inner Santa.

“A really epic arrival is good, just like I just performed,” he tells a roomful of recruits, “complete with the bells, the ho-ho-ho, and a heavy knock on the door. But not so hard that you break it.” The applicants, one wearing a full Santa suit, sit around a conference table, taking notes.

Throughout Europe and North America, throngs of Santa impersonators like Zander have been busy preparing children for Christmas. But in Germany, the number of people willing to play Santa Claus has dropped precipitously, after a student union that traditionally supplied candidates stopped doing so last year out of a lack of interest among students. It was a code-red Santa emergency.

Westlake Legal Group santaschool2_slide-30fe47d54ce62cf58eae4b7061b8f4b6b6f288e1-s1100-c15 Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

Petra Henkert, manager of a Berlin Santa Claus agency, says the number of Santas she employs in Berlin has dropped precipitously in the past two years. Rob Schmitz/NPR hide caption

toggle caption

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Westlake Legal Group  Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

Petra Henkert, manager of a Berlin Santa Claus agency, says the number of Santas she employs in Berlin has dropped precipitously in the past two years.

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Many Santa impersonators don’t do it for money — they do it in the spirit of Christmas. In Germany, Santas are employed through agencies. During last year’s crisis, Berlin’s Santa agencies convened, and like members of OPEC, they set a pricing scheme so they could all benefit equally. They called it “Santa’s Honor Code.” But this hasn’t helped the Santa shortage.

Local tradition dictates that Dec. 24 is a day when families arrange for Santa to make home visits. Until a few years ago, Petra Henkert, an e-learning business employee who has run a Berlin Santa agency on the side for the past 20 years, oversaw more than 500 Santas visiting 6,000 families. Now, 200 are trying to meet the needs of an estimated 8,000 families.

In the past, she says, the Santas under her watch didn’t ask for much. “But now, supply and demand regulate the market, and that’s a very dangerous development,” she says. “One agency has chosen to keep prices at 45 euros per Santa visit, but I’ve had to go up to 66. Others are asking for up to 120 euros.”

That’s more than $130. But amid a booming Berlin economy, “Getting paid for working on Christmas Eve is no longer attractive,” says Henkert of her typically young Santa force. “They’d rather go to their families, because they can make money elsewhere.”

Frederik Tholey, 32, is the founder of Weihnachtsmann2Go (Santa2Go), the agency that employs Tim Zander. Tholey says his Santa numbers are down this year, too, even though the job requirements aren’t complicated.

Westlake Legal Group santaschool4_slide-b3fb8e4e1a5671d156696dd0af2f07b0b7e5bf49-s1100-c15 Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

An applicant performs in a test-run as Santa at a workspace rented by Tholey’s agency in Berlin, Germany. Rob Schmitz/NPR hide caption

toggle caption

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Westlake Legal Group  Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

An applicant performs in a test-run as Santa at a workspace rented by Tholey’s agency in Berlin, Germany.

Rob Schmitz/NPR

“Basically, the entrance barriers are not so high,” he says of his applicants. “I mean, you need a proper costume. You need to be good with children.”

In return for a modest service fee, his agency connects families with Santas who live in the same vicinity by using an algorithm that plans Santas’ stops so they’re never more than 20 minutes away from their next appointment. The website appears to be a cross between Uber and a Santa dating site.

Westlake Legal Group santaschool3_slide-a481f849d5a5deac7e7761b07876de8793c54751-s1100-c15 Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

At a training workshop run by Weihnachtsmann2Go (Santa2Go), the agency provides costumes, bells and beards to aspiring Santas. Rob Schmitz/NPR hide caption

toggle caption

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Westlake Legal Group  Ho Ho, Oh No! Germany Has A Santa Shortage

At a training workshop run by Weihnachtsmann2Go (Santa2Go), the agency provides costumes, bells and beards to aspiring Santas.

Rob Schmitz/NPR

Tholey shows his Santa trainees a PowerPoint presentation filled with advice. “Always be prepared for the tough questions from your clientele,” he tells them. “‘Where are the reindeer? Is your beard real?’ And in the worst-case scenario, just avoid the question altogether and sing a song instead.”

As other applicants observe, Tholey helps dress a 62-year-old would-be Santa named Berndt in a Santa outfit and asks him to do a test-run.

“Ho ho ho,” Berndt mumbles as he enters the room from outside.

He then launches into “Knecht Ruprecht” by Theodor Storm, the traditional poem Santa recites in Germany, but stumbles over one of the lines. He pauses for a second and then suggests they forget the poem and move on to “O, Christmas Tree.”

It’s a smooth, confident transition — one the jolly one himself might make. By the end of training, Berndt’s hired — one of a vanishing elite spreading Christmas cheer through Berlin.

Austin Davis contributed to this story.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com