Chancellor of Germany
Quote by Merkel: "I will do everything in the talks with the governors so that the employees who have committed themselves to the preservation of Opel get the possible help and support that is at our disposal."
Angela Merkel has been re-elected to a second term as German chancellor, exit polls suggest. Over the past four years she has had to steer Germany through some difficult times, but remains very popular. The dowdy image that supporters feared would stymie her progress to the top is long forgotten. Partly that is because she spruced up her appearance, wearing bright colours and sporting more stylish hairstyles - but largely it is because few people think it matters. "Some people said Angela Merkel was boring and provincial, but they underestimated her," says Detmar Doering, the head of the Liberal Institute in Potsdam.
He says Mrs Merkel - the first chancellor from the former communist east - does not need to rely on charisma to win over voters, because she is a pragmatic politician who inspires confidence. "German voters aren't stupid - they don't want a Britney Spears as the chancellor of Germany, they want a serious leader whom they can trust. Merkel knows what she's doing."
She has certainly impressed Germans, scoring approval ratings of 60% in the lead-up to the 27 September, 2009 election. ...Analysts say she cowed many in the party by her decisive role in seeing off a giant of the party, former Chancellor Helmut Kohl. When he was caught in a slush fund scandal, she was the first former Kohl ally to publicly break with the man who brought her into the cabinet, writing a front-page article calling for his resignation.
It helped put her in pole position when the party felt it needed a new beginning.
But if her role in the Kohl saga suggests a ruthless streak, she is known more for her pragmatism and ability to compromise.
After being elected in 2005 she entered into coalition with her rivals in the Social Democrats (SPD), including her 2009 election challenger, and foreign minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
That has meant ditching some of her planned free market reforms, and agreeing to more left-leaning measures like a minimum wage in some sectors and a huge fiscal stimulus.
Many thought the coalition would break apart, but Mrs Merkel managed to hold it together, and in fact take the credit for Germany's emergence from recession, and the deal that kept Opel a going concern. She has been criticised by some in her own party for an apparent shift to the left. But some analysts believe this is simply pragmatism.
If the exit poll results are confirmed, allowing her to ditch the SPD as a coalition partner in favour of the pro-business FDP, she is likely to resurrect her promised economic reforms, analysts say.
Source: BBC News, "Profile: Angela Merkel", http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/4572387.stm. (accessed May 20, 2010).
Miranda Kerr (1983-now)
SHE makes men go weak at the knees, but bikini babe Miranda Kerr has confessed she is not happy with her seemingly flawless figure.
Kerr, the girlfriend of Hollywood heart-throb Orlando Bloom, has revealed there are parts of her body she doesn't like.
And she said she worked extra hard at the gym to try to fix the problem.
"Nobody is perfect," she told Britain's The Sun newspaper. "I have my good parts but I also have those parts I need to work on, but that's between me and my personal trainer."
Kerr weighed into the body image debate sparked by Jennifer Hawkins by saying all women, regardless of their shape and size, had to feel confident within themselves.
"I think the important thing is that all women are happy and confident with what they have got and don't feel pushed to being a certain way," the Victoria's Secret model said.
Source:News.com.au, Miranda Kerr weighs into body debate, admitting to concerns over her own body , http://www.news.com.au/entertainment/fashion/miranda-kerr-weighs-into-body-debate-admitting-to-concerns-over-her-own-body/story-e6frfn7i-1225819066288. (accessed May 20, 2010).
Helen Keller (1880-1968)
...Though the person Helen Keller could not see this beautiful world due to her blindness, but she had a dream to let the blind and the visually impaired see. And she made her dream come true by bringing the light to the blind and the visually impaired of the whole world.
Helen toured many countries, brought courage and motivated the persons with disabilities, especially the blind and the visually impaired to love themselves, to be educated, self reliant and empowered. She placed herself as an example of overcoming many odds with confidence and a firm determination.
Helen Keller dedicated her life for the betterment of the persons with blindness and the visual impairments, but, unfortunately, still they are the most vulnerable and disadvantaged. To make sure the success of her noble vision, Helen Keller visited many countries (about 50) and delivered lecture asking them to practice their rights. She said, "I do not like the world as it is; so I am trying to make it a little more as I want it". She further said, "Blind people are just like seeing people in the dark. The loss of sight does not impair the qualities of mind and heart". And "Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look at the world straight in the face".
...Helen Keller's optimism inspires us to be optimistic, as she narrates, "I hope one day to see enough Braille presses, libraries, schools, and training centers and teachers to assure all persons the opportunities they would have had, had they not been blind. This is my greatest purpose in life".
...Nobel Laureate Sir Winston Churchill called Helen "the greatest woman of the twentieth century". Jimmy Carter, the former US President wrote about Helen Keller as a foreword in a book of her quotations, "Without sight she saw clearly into the souls of her fellow men and women, and without hearing she heard plainly the cries of people who suffered from poverty, from war, from disabilities, from discrimination". Helen Keller's nephew Keller Johnson-Thompson wrote also as a preface in a same book about his great-great-aunt, "Helen Keller's life was not just about overcoming incredible odds, sacrificing for what you really want in life, and leaving the world better than you found it". Helen Keller herself remarks, "It is said that success is happiness. They are things that endure. They bring riches that never pass away and happiness that never fails"......
Source: The financial express, Helen Keller: The light to the blind, http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/search_index.php?page=detail_news&news_id=2429 (accessed May 20, 2010).