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Mayor Speaks Out On Name Committee And Guns

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Published December 28, 2012

Reykjavík mayor Jón Gnarr has never been one to cushion his opinions, as recent statements he has made about the Icelandic Name Committee and America’s gun culture attest.
The Icelandic Name Committee is a legal body which assesses whether or not a new name can be entered into the lexicon of names a person may legally give their child. Their rulings are based on two criteria: whether the name can be grammatically declined in Icelandic, and/or whether the name has historical precedent.
Gnarr, commenting on an article by blogger Eva Hauksdóttir calling for the abolition of the committee, said in part, “The Name Committee is one of the most trifling things you can find in this country. It isn’t just silly; it also discriminates against people.”
The mayor, himself a noted pacifist, also has some strong opinions on guns in America. In this case, he compares the discussion to opinions Americans have made about Icelandic whale hunting. Addressing Americans in general, he says:
“When you were unhappy with our hunting whales, we said ‘It is a part of our culture’. You said: ‘We don’t care. Stop whaling or we’ll stop buying your fish.’ OK, we stop. But what can I do [in response to your gun culture]? Stop buying Coke?”



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BREAKING NEWS: Small Eruption Reported Northeast Of Bárðarbunga

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A small eruption has been reported at Dyngjujökull glacier, northeast of Iceland’s subglacial Bárðarbunga volcano. RÚV report that Kristín Jónsdóttir with the Icelandic Met Office has confirmed that a small eruption at Dyngjujökull started around 2pm today. The aviation code has been escalated to “red” and air traffic around Bárðarbunga has been forbidden. Seismic activity in the area escalated considerably today and the Coast Guard’s radar-equipped TF-SIF surveillance plane put on stand-by. At time of writing all internet live-feeds are down. *****UPDATE***** The Coast Guard’s radar-equipped TF-SIF surveillance plane is in the air and will soon be flying over the glacier.

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Sheep Break Free, Police Called

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The Police in Mosfellsbær, a small town east of Reykjavík, received a call after two sheep at Árbæjarsafn made a run for it, reports Vísir. Árbæjarsafn, also known as Reykjavík City Museum aims to give its visitors an insight into the living conditions, work and recreational activities of the people of Reykjavík in earlier times. The sheep belong to the museum but saw an opportunity yesterday and took it by breaking free. Unfortunately for them, they did not make it far and were quickly rounded up by local, Ívar Óli Kristjánsson. Museum staff picked the sheep up, returning them to Árbæjarsafn.

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Icelandic Symphony Orchestra Debuts At BBC Proms

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The Iceland Symphony Orchestra made its Proms debut at the Royal Albert Hall yesterday, reports RÚV. The Symphony performed works by two homegrown composers, both inspired by Iceland’s geology. The slow-growing, primal Geysir by Jón Leifs balanced the shifting tectonics of Hauk Tómasson’s Magma. “We felt so great,” said Concertmaster Sigrún Eðvaldsdóttir. “We could have played on that stage for 50 years. There was no stress, it was just absolutely wonderful, I can’t explain it any other way.” The BBC Proms is a summer season of daily orchestral classical music concerts and events founded in 1985.

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Immigrant Children To Get Mother Tongue Classes

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The City of Reykjavík is making preparations to set up mother tongue classes for primary school children of foreign origin. According to an announcement posted on City Hall’s webpage, the School and Recreation Council has passed a measure to set up a workgroup whose purpose it will be to outline how immigrant primary school children will be taught their native languages. The group will be comprised of representatives from all the parties in City Council, directed by Social Democrat vice councilperson Sa­bine Leskopf. The focus of the group will be to assess the need for children of foreign origin to

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88 Fin Whales Culled So Far

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Over half the quota of fin whales has been culled so far this summer, showing a slight decline from the year previous. Since whaling season began last June 15, Vísir reports, 88 fin whales have been culled. The maximum quota is for 154 fin whales, which may only be hunted during a 3-month period. “It’s being going decently well,” Gunnlaugur Fjólar Gunnlaugsson, the plant manager of whaling company Hvalur hf. “There are a bit fewer animals than there were at this same time last year. It’s been a difficult time, but it’ll work out.” Greenpeace, amongst others, have pointed out

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Nói Síríusly Looking For Candy Tasters

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Icelandic candy manufacturer Nói Síríus is searching for volunteers for a “tasting panel” for the company’s product development department. The tasters chosen would be sent new candy prototypes and asked to mark them, to help Nói Síríus decide which products should make it into production. In the past few years 40-50 families have been sent these prototypes to try out but the company has now decided to expand the testing group and advertised the position on Facebook. Vísir reports that within 20 minutes 514 people had volunteered and at time of writing over 1.300 people had commented on the post,

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