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Asia Cup 2018: Pakistan had no plans and they looked rattled, says Wasim Akram

first_imgWasim Akram slammed Pakistan’s negative approach after their eight-wicket defeat to India in their Asia Cup encounter in Dubai on Wednesday. Pakistan had elected to bat after winning the toss but managed only 162 before Rohit Sharma’s 39-ball 52 helped India romp home with 21 overs to spare.Akram said it was always going to be difficult even for Pakistan’s pace attack to defend 163 on a flat pitch.Besides, Akram voices his concerns over the way Pakistan played Kuldeep Yadav and Kedar Jadhav. Shortly before the match began, Akram had said on India Today that Pakistan needed to be watchful against Kuldeep as he would be the biggest threat: the left-arm chinaman bowler took the key wicket of Babar Azam and broke an 82-run stand with Shoaib Malik to put the pressure back on Pakistan who had recovered after Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s double strike.”It was difficult to defend 163 on such a flat pitch. This was supposed to be Pakistan’s home ground. It was all set for them: win the toss, bat and put up the runs. I have been saying this for the last three weeks: Kuldeep Yadav will be the main threat. They did not even see what Kedar Jadhav was trying to bowl.”Sometimes, you have to respect a good bowler and see off his spell. But they had no plans and they were flabbergasted. When you are facing a good bowler and he is bowling well, you need to see him off and look to score off the other bowlers,” Akram told Aaj Tak.advertisementIndia vs Pakistan: Report | Highlights | As it happened | PhotosAkram said the pressure was now back on Pakistan who were high on confidence against India after their Champions Trophy triumph in 2017.Also Read: Sarfraz Ahmed admits Pakistan stumped by Kedar JadhavAfter the crushing defeat, Akram said Pakistan’s players needed to stay off their phones and social media ahead of such high-profile matches.”They should have signed off and kept their phones away but today’s boys cannot breathe without social media. If they had to speak to their families, they could ask them to call in their rooms,” he said.Read – Mohammad Azharuddin critical of Pakistan’s negative approachFormer India captain Mohammad Azharuddin was also baffled by Pakistan’s approach and said he did not understand why their bowlers did not bowl more aggressive lines.Read – Pakistan crumbled under pressure vs India, says Harbhajan Singh”I don’t understand why Pakistan’s bowlers did not go for wickets. They should have bowled a more attacking line… Defending such a small total is really difficult.”India will take a lot of confidence especially after the game against Hong Kong. Pakistan’s approach was negative, and they took too much pressure.”last_img read more

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Twinkle Khanna posts adorable picture with forever friend Akshay Kumar as she misses him

first_imgAkshay Kumar is not only Twinkle Khanna’s husband but her best friend as well. The couple shares a cute bond and are often seen making fun of each other in a cute way. With being a doting father of two children, Aarav and Nitara, Akshay is also a protective and supportive husband. Akshay, who is currently in Thailand to shoot for his upcoming film Sooryavanshi, is being missed by his wife.Actor-turned-author Twinkle took to Instagram to share an adorable picture of herself with Akshay Kumar, in which the couple is seen smiling from ear to ear. Twinkle captioned the picture, “My glass is perhaps always half full but it sort of feels filled to the brim when this hunk is around:) #friendsforever #absencemakestheheartandallthatjazz (sic).”Apart from being a protective husband, Akshay Kumar is a true sport as he doesn’t mind his wife roasting him. On her part, Twinkle Khanna, who is known for her quick wit, doesn’t shy away from pulling her husband’s leg.At a recent award show, the actress-writer took a dig at Akshay Kumar. When the Kesari actor was aksed if Twinkle has much influence on his style, the actor said, “100%.” Twinkle, however, disagreed with Akshay. She said, “Not at all. He has more shoes than me. He’s got pants pink, green, lilac, dark purple, yellow.”advertisementAkshay then said, “Didn’t you tell me to buy that?”Twinkle replied, “I did, but I didn’t tell you to buy the whole rainbow.”While Akshay Kumar’s fans love him in all his avatars, be it his formal suit-and-boot ones or a casual one in track pants and hoodies, Twinkle can’t stand Akshay in the latter.At the show, when Twinkle was asked to reveal one thing that Akshay wears that she doesn’t approve of, she said, “Track pants and hoodies. The last time I wanted him to get rid of one, I actually had to cut it.”Akshay confirmed the same and said, “I try to make her understand that I feel very comfortable and at home [in track pants and hoodies] because mera kaam he saara din bhagna, kudna ka hai. So I prefer wearing track pants and a hoodie.”He added, “I feel nice in a hoodie kyuki I feel very khula khula.”Twinkle then said, “I have so many things to say but I am controlling myself.”On the work front, Akshay Kumar has a number of films in his kitty this year. Currently he is shooting for Rohit Shetty’s cop drama Sooryavanshi. He had wrapped up Raj Mehta’s Good News recently. The film, which is about surrogacy, also stars Kareena Kapoor Khan, Diljit Dosanjh and Kiara Advani in pivotal roles. Akshay will also be seen in the multi-starrer Housefull 4 with stars like Bobby Deol, Riteish Deshmukh, Rana Duggubati, Kriti Sanon, Kriti Kharbanda and Pooja Hegde, among others.ALSO READ | Twinkle Khanna hates Akshay Kumar in track pants: Had to cut a pair to stop him from wearing themALSO READ | Twinkle Khanna shares daughter Nitara’s excuse to bunk school. Instagram loves itALSO WATCH | PM Modi has non-political chat with actor Akshay Kumar at 7 Lok Kalyan Marglast_img read more

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Neville Southall: ‘I’ve got a bit of flak because I stick up for sex workers’

first_imgOne of Southall’s trademark Twitter witticisms has centred on bizarre jokes about skeletons which mock the Tories’ austerity cuts. “That started because I was asked to talk at some function for funeral directors in Croydon. I thought: ‘What the fuck do I say?’ I started talking about skeletons and it was a funny night. I said maybe we could replace lampstands with skeletons. It would be nice to have your uncle sat there in the lounge as a coffee table.”After a few engaging and surreal hours, Southall stays on to talk even when the tape is off. He tells me, movingly, about the two foster children he and his wife look after and he finds new energy when compiling a list of people he wants me to contact.I feel even more uplifted when, in the following days, quotes pour in from some of those to whom he has offered a Twitter platform. Appreciation of Southall’s generosity and openness illuminate their messages. But Jessa Jones, a sex worker, makes a telling point. “I was surprised that the first thing Neville asked upon learning what I do for a living is: ‘What do sex workers want to make their lives better?’” Jones reveals.“I can’t speak for all sex workers but, personally, I welcome input from Neville and like-minded people. However, when sex workers are listened to, without a high‑profile figure piquing public interest first, we may finally have made some progress.”In the face of such fierce eloquence I can imagine Southall nodding and smiling, happy that the final words of this interview are not his own.Topics Hide Sport politics Share via Email Wales Twitter Southall is beaten by Norman Whiteside’s shot in extra time at Wembley in 1985 as Manchester United won the FA Cup final 1-0. Photograph: Mark Leech/Offside/Getty Images Thank you for your feedback. World Cup 2018 The World Cup is in the wrong country. Why would you go to a country where homophobia is horrendous? Neville Southall attacks Tories with series of surreal skeleton tweets Twitter Pinterest interviews Southall and his Everton team-mates with the FA Cup after the 2-0 victory over Watford in the 1984 final. Photograph: Colorsport//Rex/Shutterstock What did Southall make of the furore last week over Raheem Sterling and calls for England to drop him because of a still-incomplete tattoo of a gun on his leg – which the Manchester City forward chose to have done in memory of his father who was shot dead when he was two years old? “That was brought up by some prick,” Southall snorts. “Piers Morgan is a prick. What gives him the right to say what can be on your body? If Sterling had tattooed a massive cock on his leg I would say: ‘It reminds me of Piers Morgan.’”There appears to be a racial undertow in the tabloids’ hounding of Sterling but Southall believes “he gets abused because he’s got lots of cash”. He says: “Anybody successful in this country gets tons of abuse. Harry Kane? Best thing since sliced bread. I bet at the World Cup he gets called a hopeless wanker. The Sun will be following all of them footballers around, hoping they fuck up. Why do we love Frank Bruno? We love people who allow us to say: ‘Oh, he’s a great loser.’ Fuck off. I was glad Kane said: ‘We should talk about winning it’ – because they can.”Is Southall looking forward to the World Cup? “I am – but it’s in the wrong country. Why would you go to a country where human rights are shit? Where homophobia is horrendous. England should have sent the LGBT team to represent them. Fuck Putin. ‘Here’s our gay team. What are you going to do now?’ Or they should send an all black team, just to annoy Putin.” Everton The Fiver: sign up and get our daily football email. Such generosity is on the verge of scuppering my plans. Southall, hearing of my hope for a detailed interview, is uncomfortable. He would prefer I speak first to some of the groups he is trying to help rather than have attention focused on him.Southall listens while it is explained that my primary interest is his collaborative work on Twitter. Typically, he says, “OK, then,” as we settle down for one of the most exhaustive and unusual conversations I’ve had under the modest banner of a sports interview.“I like Twitter because it brings me into contact with people I’d never meet,” Southall says. “I like what makes people tick. So I’m thinking: ‘How mentally strong have these women got to be in the sex industry?’ Even if you like it, at some stage you’re going to get hurt.” Facebook Show Facebook Southall shows empathy for a fellow goalkeeper in Karius – who endured a nightmarish Champions League final. “You can’t change it,” he says when asked how he would console Karius. “But you can’t let two mistakes define your career. You either keep swimming or you drown. Of course I empathise with his pain. I know exactly what he’s going through. If I made a mistake, and it was my fault we lost, I wanted to kill somebody. I wanted to physically hurt somebody. Not because they’d done anything wrong but because that’s how I felt.“I think of the goal I let in from [Gheorghe] Hagi when we played Romania [in a vital 1993 World Cup qualifier which Wales lost]. I think of Norman Whiteside scoring for Man United in the [1985] FA Cup final [which Everton lost 1-0]. But I felt the same after making a mistake against Coventry or Leicester. You’ve still let everybody down. That’s why I liked my position. I was either fucking good or I wasn’t. When I made a mistake I couldn’t blame anybody else. As a keeper, it’s all down to belief. Karius has got to believe he’s a good keeper.” Neville Southall: ‘I like Twitter because it brings me into contact with people I’d never meet’. Portraits: Mark Waugh/Guardiancenter_img Share on Facebook Southall is even more animated when discussing homophobia in football. “I did a thing for the Rainbow Toffees [Everton’s LGBT supporters’ group] last month. It was great and it made me think the FA take the piss with their LGBT relations day. You wear some rainbow laces one day?“Is there anybody in the commentary team that’s within the LGBT community? No. Have you talked to any players? No. Do you have any LGBT people on the pitch? No. I said to them Rainbow Toffees I’d like Everton to be the first club to get their LGBT people on at half-time and play a five-a-side. Arsenal want to play us. We might get some stick. But I’m hoping Everton fans are sensible and people get used to it.”Will a gay Premier League footballer come out soon? “Yes, because the press will out him. The other day the Sun said they wouldn’t name that bisexual footballer because they didn’t think it was right. Fuck off. He probably got an injunction. But the first gay footballer will be a multimillionaire. The problem is that the FA are not proactive. I spoke to a gay referee and he said if you use the N-word you get sent off. If a fan says it he’s thrown out of the ground. But you don’t get sent off or chucked out for using a derogatory homophobic term.”Away from football, Southall’s disdain for the Conservative government is plain. “The day May killed me was when she spoke about ‘JAMs’ – people who are Just About Managing. I used to think she’d be a bit more compassionate but she’s colder than all the others.”Southall supports Labour, even if they frustrate him, and he says: “Jeremy Corbyn’s done all right. Whether you like him or hate him, he sticks to what he says. When he got made leader, people took the piss because he didn’t wear a suit. Well, he’s not Clark Kent. I thought: ‘If he don’t look like a politician, great. I don’t want a politician.’” Quick guide Given a voice by Neville Southall on Twitter Doubt settles over Neville Southall like a brooding cloud on an otherwise sunny afternoon in Liverpool. Before he begins talking animatedly for two hours about sex workers, mental health, skeletons, transgender issues, Theresa May, the agony of Loris Karius, the hounding of Raheem Sterling, why Piers Morgan is “a massive cock”, how to annoy Vladimir Putin, the World Cup and his dream of uniting disenfranchised people, Southall is on the brink of cancelling this interview.This should be a stress-free day back on Merseyside for the former Everton and Wales footballer, who was arguably the world’s best goalkeeper for a while in the 1980s, as he takes a break from his consuming job at a special needs school in Ebbw Vale. Before he became a celebrated footballer, Southall had been a hod-carrier, a binman and a cleaner. So it is not surprising that, aged 59, he should now work at a pupil referral unit – offering education for children excluded from mainstream schools.Southall is also an extraordinary presence on Twitter. He has 134,000 followers but, rather than plugging a product or spreading bile, Southall gives up his Twitter page regularly to people who would not normally have such a platform to address the challenges and inequities they face. On any given night Southall’s Twitter feed might contain intelligent explanations from people in the LGBT community, a drugs helpline, a suicide bereavement charity or a sex workers’ collective. Southall adopts a similarly inclusive approach when working with people in drug awareness, the LGBT community and, “this week we have a big mental health push, a BAME evening, the police are coming on and people who address knife crime”.Which subject had the biggest impact? “The LGBT one. I got 30,000 new followers within a week. More importantly, I’m learning new stuff. I started with the LGBT stuff because if the kids at school ask a question I wouldn’t have a clue. But I spoke to a few Trans people about operations. They were really nice and explained stuff I knew nothing about.”Southall is driven by a grander idea. “It’s all about uniting people. If we could unite all sex workers that would change their lives for ever. The government would have to listen to them. If you unite all LGBT people there are millions. If you do the same with the mental health people and all the charities came together it would be powerful. Do you think Theresa May could ignore them then?”Does he get followed by many politicians? “Yeah, but I’ve blocked a few. I’ve also blocked people from the Sun.” Share on LinkedIn Twitter He has a special interest in England’s World Cup keepers because Jordan Pickford plays for Everton. “Pickford has a fair bit of talent but he could vary his service. Maybe he’s been under instructions to boot it as far as he can. I’d like to see him spend another year working on crosses and stand up more on one-on-ones. But he’s been the best English goalkeeper this season because I don’t think Jack Butland has played enough. I like him because he’s calm but I’d go with Pickford. My only concern is that Pickford’s always been busy because he’s played in teams with shit defences. If he spends 80-odd minutes doing nothing has he the concentration to suddenly make a good save?” Was this helpful? Share on Pinterest Pinterest Read more If many people become parochial and dogmatic as they grow older then Southall is on a quest to open himself up and learn. Before he allowed his Twitter page to become an occasional platform for sex workers, Southall admits his preconceptions. “I thought it was just people stuck on street corners. But when you talk to them they become real. If you cut them they bleed. If you tell them a joke they laugh sometimes. They hurt, they cry. Eventually they die the same as you and me. We think of them as statistics or problems but they can come from your family or friends.“When they first came on my Twitter I wasn’t sure how they’d be taken. But people listened because they are genuinely interested. How often do you get a chance to listen to a sex worker or ask them questions? People engaged positively and sensibly. I’ve got a bit of flak because if I stick up for sex workers some people think I’m supporting the trafficking of women. That’s stupid. It could be your mum, your daughter, your sister, your brother. You don’t know who is doing sex work. I’m trying to get across what they actually do and the barriers they face.” Reuse this content Bojan Krkic: ‘I had anxiety attacks but no one wants to talk about that. Football’s not interested’ Pinterest Share on Twitter Facebook Read more Share on WhatsApp Given a voice by Neville Southall on TwitterSharon McDonnell, Suicide Bereavement UK “Neville invited me to take over his Twitter account to motivate more men to complete our survey into the vulnerabilities and needs of those bereaved by suicide. I wasn’t sure his followers would respond because they say ‘men don’t talk’ and suicide bereavement is taboo. I had visions of talking to myself for two hours. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Within a day, 444 people completed the online survey. Thanks to Neville, men bereaved by suicide will now have a voice when we present our study to government.” SWARM [Sex Worker Advocacy and Resistance Movement]“The response from Nev’s followers has been incredible. We’re not asking for people to love the sex industry. We’re asking for basic workers’ rights, safety and access to justice. Neville really ‘gets’ us and he stuck his neck out for us when he could have picked an easier, less controversial topic.” Diversity role models “One of the issues with social media is that you tend to end up being connected to people in your own echo chamber. Taking over Neville’s account has given us the opportunity to speak to people who would never connect with us normally. It’s also really powerful that Neville is not LGB or T. Very few LGBT people have an issue with who they are, the issues are much more often a result of how others react to them. Our partnership with Neville sends a powerful message about what behaviour is acceptable.” Drugsline “Neville has helped us raise the Drugsline profile, reaching hundreds of thousands of people and ultimately bringing out conversations around addictions which have helped us offer footsteps to recovery. By using his profile he changes so many stereotypes and the stigma that go with mental health and addiction.” Share on Messengerlast_img read more

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Oklahoma’s Jamal Danley Shares 1-Year-Old Facebook Post From Fan Telling Him Not To Play For Sooners

first_imgJamal Danley's Facebook post 1 year later.jamal danley facebook postIn 2014, Oklahoma posted an 8-5 record, finished fourth in the Big 12, and got blasted by Clemson in the Russell Athletic Bowl, 40-6. In the offseason, the Sooners made a number of coaching changes – especially on the offensive side of the ball – in an attempt to reestablish dominance in the conference. A year later, they’re 11-1 and a lock to make the College Football Playoff.Tuesday, junior offensive lineman Jamal Danley, who was a four-star JUCO transfer this year, posted a Facebook message that was written to him while he was making his decision on where to play in 2015. The post, which looks to have been sent by a fan, focuses on Oklahoma’s demise and calls Danley “SEC material.” Danley clearly finds it amusing, seeing where OU is right now.1 year later! pic.twitter.com/Z9HiJrX8NG— Jamal Danley™ (@JDanley54) November 30, 2015Oklahoma has off this week as it prepares for to play for a national championship. Apparently, not everyone saw that coming a year ago.last_img read more

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Cause Caps: Hats That End Homelessness

first_imgMitscoots Outfitters was born out of a desire to help others. The Austin, Texas-based company sells outstanding outdoor gear, socks, shirts, beanies, scarves, gloves– but its main purpose is to provide work to people transitioning out of homelessness. On any given night in the United States, one of the richest and most powerful countries in the world, a staggering 633,782 people are sleeping on the streets. Veterans make up about 13%, children are 22% of that number, and 42.6% are disabled or otherwise unable to gain employment. There’s no single reason someone becomes homeless, but poverty, mental illness, domestic violence, lack of health care, and job loss are some of the major factors. Once homeless, it’s an enormously difficult cycle to break.That’s where Mitscoots steps in. They help break this cycle in two really important ways. The first is they give what you get: When you purchase something– socks, a beanie– they give that item, in your name, to one of a number of charities and organizations all over the country.The second, and perhaps most important thing they do, is provide jobs. Actual, sustainable work.Cause Caps are a major part of this initiative. The hats are all made in the US, providing jobs in the dwindling American manufacturing sector. Made of brushed twill, they’re soft, malleable, classic and tear-resistant. And the hats are packed up and shipped out by men and women on the path out of homelessness. If that’s not awesome enough, these Cause Caps are made with rigorous standards and come with a five year guarantee: you see one thread out of place and Mitscoots will repair it for free.A Kickstarter campaign for Cause Caps earned well over its initial goal of $17,500, suggesting this is a problem people are passionate about solving. Plus, they’re pretty bitchin’ hats.Mitscoots is solving problems simply by providing quality products and quality jobs. Editors’ Recommendations Get Acquainted With the Military-Approved Skincare Brand Bravo Sierra Why Your Desk Chair Matters and the 9 Best Ones to Boost Your Productivity How to Transition Your Wardrobe to Fall Learn Guitar (and Don’t Give Up) With the Fender Play App World’s First Luxury Space Hotel Promises Climbing Wall, Low-Gravity Basketball Courts last_img read more

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Anthony Bourdain, Celebrity Chef and Travel Show Star, Dead at 61

first_img The Best Travel and Adventure Documentaries on Netflix Right Now The Best Documentaries on Netflix Right Now Anthony Bourdain — the revered chef, television host, author, and advocate — has died at age 61, CNN announced Friday, June 8.“It is with extraordinary sadness we can confirm the death of our friend and colleague, Anthony Bourdain,” CNN said in a statement. “His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food, and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts and prayers are with his daughter and family at this incredibly difficult time.”Bourdain was in Strausborg, France, filming for an upcoming episode of Parts Unknown, the acclaimed CNN travel and food show that is currently in its 11th season. Cause of death was suicide, the news network confirmed. “His close friend Eric Ripert, the French chef, found Bourdain unresponsive in his hotel room Friday morning,” CNN wrote.Bourdain’s loss was felt immediately around the world “A piece of my heart is truly broken this morning,” said Andrew Zimmern, a friend and frequent collaborator, on Twitter Friday morning. “Tony was a symphony. I wish everyone could have seen all of him. A true friend.”A piece of my heart is truly broken this morning. And the irony, the sad cruel irony is that the last year he’d never been happier. The rest of my heart aches for the 3 amazing women he left behind. Tony was a symphony. I wish everyone could have seen all of him. A true friend.— Andrew Zimmern (@andrewzimmern) June 8, 2018“We are stunned and deeply saddened to hear that the world is now without its global ambassador, Anthony Bourdain. He was an incredible talent who showed us beautiful, gritty, complicated, and delicious places in every corner of the world,” read a statement from the Travel Channel.pic.twitter.com/5OVneIssUP— Travel Channel (@travelchannel) June 8, 2018Bourdain was born June 25, 1956, in New York City. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of American in 1978, Bourdain worked in several famous kitchens, most notably the now-shuttered Brasserie Les Halles in New York.His 2000 book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, followed by his first TV series, A Cook’s Tour on Food Network, elevated Bourdain from industry star to household name. Bourdain is best known as the host of No Reservations, the Emmy Award-nominated culinary travel show that ran on the Travel Channel from 2005 until 2012.Anthony Bourdain: Parts UnknownIn 2013, Bourdain made a bold move to CNN and launched a new show, Parts Unkown, which dug deeper into cultures and cuisines in different communities across the globe. Parts Unkown has garnered five Emmy Awards and a 2013 Peabody Award.Throughout his career, Bourdain was an outspoken advocate for a variety of underrepresented people in the culinary world. He regularly championed immigrants, shining a spotlight on some of the issues they face and their many contributions to the restaurant industry. He also spoke out against sexual harassment.Bourdain is survived by his daughter; his girlfriend, Asia Argento; and his ex-wives, Ottavia Busia and Nancy Putkoski.“We can all help prevent suicide,” says the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We agree. This free service offers 24/7 confidential support and resources for folks in crisis, as well as friends and family. Call 1-800-273-8255 or chat online.Further ReadingAnthony Bourdain on Tattoos and the Stories Behind His OwnAnthony Bourdain on the Future of CraftAnthony Bourdain on Whisky and the Beauty Of Classic Pubs Editors’ Recommendations The Best Netflix Food Documentaries to Savor Right Now 10 Best Crime Documentaries on Netflix Right Now The Best Food Shows on Netflix to Binge Right Now last_img read more

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Ten Jack-Ups for East Sunrise

first_imgzoom IllustrationHong Kong-based East Sunrise Group revealed that it has ordered ten jack-up platforms from China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC). The newbuilds, worth around USD 1.6 billion, are scheduled for delivery within 18 months from the start of construction.The first platform is expected to join East Sunrise Group by early 2016, whereas the rest will follow within three month intervals.The jack-ups feature 81.3m in length, 40.4m in width and 5.8m in depth, boasting a deck area of about 1,500 m3 each.East Sunrise Group is engaged in international shipping, ship leasing and offshore engineering operations.World Maritime News, July 23, 2014; Image: CSIClast_img

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New Regulations Encourage CommunityBased Renewable Projects

first_imgNew energy regulations announced today, Oct. 15, will help stabilize electricity costs for Nova Scotians, while promoting a greener, more sustainable province for generations to come. The new regulations enable the province to increase the amount of renewable electricity produced in communities across Nova Scotia, to help government achieve the goals it set in the province’s new Renewable Electricity Plan. “These regulations are another step towards implementing some of the most aggressive renewable energy goals in the world,” said Premier Darrell Dexter. “These greener, local projects will help to create good jobs, provide a better future for Nova Scotians and reduce our overall dependence on imported carbon-based sources. This will help stabilize electricity prices over the long term and improve the environment.” The Renewable Electricity Regulations follow a consultation process that determined eligible technologies and who would qualify for a community-based feed-in tariff program, which involves a fixed pricing structure for renewable electricity production. The Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board will immediately begin the process of setting rates for community-based feed-in projects, with a hearing in the new year and a decision expected by spring. An on-line application and approval system is scheduled to be in place in the spring. A website and preliminary guide detailing how to participate is available at www.nsrenewables.ca. Rates will vary for developmental tidal projects and community-based projects such as small-scale in-stream tidal, run-of-the-river hydroelectricity, and biomass combined heat and power systems. Wind projects will also face different rates — one for projects over 50 kW and another for micro-scale projects under 50 kW. This ensures a variety of community opportunities and support development of Nova Scotia companies. “The new regulations are an exciting step forward for Nova Scotia and it should help our company build its wind turbine business both locally and globally,” said Jonathan Barry, president of Seaforth Energy. “The ability of Nova Scotians and businesses to participate in community energy will help us to scale up our operations, research and development and manufacturing and will make us more competitive globally.” “The new Renewable Electricity Regulations are very important in helping provide us with direction to move forward with the implementation of our Regional Energy Strategy for Cumberland County,” said Shawna Eason, Cumberland County energy officer. “Our strategic priorities, especially wind energy development of both large scale and community projects, will benefit from the COMFIT program, helping us to increase the amount of sustainable, clean energy generated in Cumberland County.” The regulations put the Renewable Electricity Plan into action and puts Nova Scotia on course to reach its target of 25 per cent of renewable electricity supply by 2015 and a goal of 40 per cent by 2020. The new regulations provide opportunities for combined heat and power projects, where a proponent has direct access to a biofuel source, such as sawmills, farms and greenhouses. Medium to large-scale renewable electricity projects by independent power producers will be subject to a competitive bidding process overseen by a renewable electricity administrator who will set rates. Talks are continuing between the province and the Mi’kmaq to encourage the development of renewable electricity projects on First Nations. The regulations are expected to be amended to incorporate agreements reached. The province will review and analyze the progress of the Renewable Electricity Plan, with a special focus on the COMFIT program, within 18 months of implementation to determine whether the regulations are achieving its goals.last_img read more

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General Assembly backs Kimberley Process to prevent diamonds from funding conflict

The resolution was adopted after the 192 Member States were briefed by President Festus Gontebanye Mogae of Botswana, which holds this year’s Chair of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme that imposes extensive requirements on participants to certify that shipments of rough diamonds are free from conflict diamonds. “The General Assembly, recognizing that the trade in conflict diamonds continues to be a matter of serious international concern, which can be directly linked to the fuelling of armed conflict… reaffirms its strong and continuing support for the Kimberley ProcessCertification Scheme and the Kimberley Process as a whole,” it stated. The resolution also recognized that the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme can help to ensure that Security Council’s resolutions containing sanctions on the trade in conflict diamonds are carried out, while helping to prevent future conflicts. The Assembly resolution also supported a decision taken by a meeting of the Kimberley Process earlier this month calling for “stronger internal control” standards for participants in the process –– who now number 47 representing 71 countries –– as well as for clearer guidance on implementing effective controls from the mining to the export of diamonds. President Mogae’s briefing to the Assembly also included a 2006 progress report on the Kimberly Process, which concluded that it was working well although there were still some problems, particularly in Côte d’Ivoire and South America. “Some of Côte d’Ivoire’s neighbours are not Kimberley Process Participants and, therefore, the Kimberley Process has relatively limited influence over such countries. The Kimberley Process views the problem of leakage diamonds from Côte d’Ivoire into the legitimate trade as one that may require a regional approach to resolve,” the report stated. “The other area where there are challenges that require a regional approach is in South America, and specifically concerning Brazil, Guyana and Venezuela,” it said, adding that “all countries” in both regions were encouraged to join the Process as recommended by the Security Council. Speaking to reporters after briefing the Assembly, President Mogae acknowledged there was still work to do with the Kimberley Process but highlighted also its successes. “Before the Certification Scheme it was reported that conflict diamonds were possibly about 4 per cent of global production. Now with Certification we have admitted in my report that …we are glad to say that they are now less than 1 per cent,” he said. Begun in 2000 by southern African diamond-producing countries, the Kimberley Process led to the adoption in November 2002 in Interlaken, Switzerland, of the international Certification Scheme for rough diamonds, based primarily on national certification schemes and on internationally-agreed minimum standards. read more

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UN food agency highlights progress in Swaziland agricultural initiative

In a media statement, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) announced that its Swaziland Agricultural Development Project, or SADP, had already begun to have an impact on the lives of the country’s smallholder farmers through a number of training initiatives and agricultural development projects designed to increase productivity and competitiveness on the global food markets. “You cannot tackle rural poverty if you don’t put the smallholder farmers first,” said the SADP’s Chief Technical Advisor, Nehru Essomba, in an FAO news release. Launched in 2009, in tandem with the Government of Swaziland and the European Union, which has provided 14 million euros in funding to the project, the SADP has also focussed on raising the nutrition levels among the landlocked nation’s rural population as well as stimulating their economic output. A total of 340 vegetable gardens have also been established for vulnerable families to grow vegetables and herbs for household consumption, with over 2,000 people directly benefiting. Moreover, the programme has helped some 2,500 young people set up their businesses in poultry farming, pig production, or vegetable and field crop production.Swaziland has long been dealing with various social and economic difficulties. Consecutive years of drought, a devastating AIDS pandemic, decades of economic slowdown, and the precipitous rise in global food prices and agricultural inputs have made it increasingly hard for Swaziland’s rural population, which is highly dependent on subsistence farming, to make a living. According to the FAO’s most recent statistics on the issue, almost 20 per cent of the country’s population of one million is undernourished. “Connecting farmers to the market is a major challenge,” Mr. Essomba said, noting that the proximity of South Africa, with its large scale agricultural producers, also posed a problem for Swaziland’s farmers. In response to this added challenge, the SADP is setting up a one million euro Marketing Investing Fund to promote niche crops that offer small farmers a comparative advantage in the market.In addition, the initiative is also working to spread good agricultural practices crucial for farming productivity, but also with an interest in preserving the environment and lessening the pressure on Swaziland’s limited resources. According to the FAO news release, more than 2,000 farmers have already been educated in a wide range of practices including conservation agriculture and agro-forestry. read more

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Opinion 5 players on offense to watch in 2015 Ohio State Spring

Then-redshirt-sophomore running back Bri’onte Dunn (25) carries the ball during the 2014 OSU Spring Game on April 12, 2014, at Ohio Stadium.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo EditorWhen it comes to the Ohio State offense, the bulk of discussion since the Buckeyes’ national title win in the College Football Playoff has centered around the quarterback competition.But when OSU takes the Ohio Stadium field on Saturday for its annual Spring Game, redshirt-senior Braxton Miller and redshirt-sophomore J.T. Barrett will both be sidelined while they recover from shoulder and ankle injuries, respectively. Of the signal callers with a chance to start, only redshirt-junior Cardale Jones will be fully available, and OSU fans already got a taste of what he can do during the Buckeyes’ three postseason games last year.Jones will likely play the whole game, but more can be learned from watching the five players on offense listed below than from focusing on the known players like Jones and other returning starters.1. Redshirt-junior running back Bri’onte DunnJunior Ezekiel Elliott, the Buckeyes’ undisputed starting running back, is nursing an injury of his own, and likely won’t be involved on Saturday.Normally that would leave sophomore Curtis Samuel to take the keys in the OSU backfield, but at least two running backs will be featured prominently and Samuel will likely be playing H-back. So with Elliott’s primary backup catching passes from the slot, Dunn will have a chance to prove what he can do after seeing limited playing time early in his collegiate career.Dunn made his mark on special teams last year after redshirting as a sophomore and playing minimally as a true freshman. Now he’s getting first-team reps in practice, and could earn a sizeable chunk of playing time with a big day at the ‘Shoe.2. Redshirt-freshman quarterback Stephen CollierJones will be the focus, but the opposite side will be quarterbacked by Collier.He redshirted last year after being named the Southwest Georgia State Player of the Year in high school, but seems to be the odd man out when it comes to potential playing time. Collier is currently behind Jones, Miller and Barrett, and was a less-heralded recruit than Torrance Gibson and Joe Burrow, who are set to join the Buckeyes this fall.If he proves himself as a legitimate threat on Saturday, Collier still won’t be in this year’s race for playing time. But he could establish himself as a dependable backup down the line, or prove his worth as a potential starter should he decide to transfer.3. Redshirt-senior offensive lineman Chase FarrisThe OSU offensive line returns four starters from 2014, and Farris has already all but locked up the right tackle position for 2015.The former defensive lineman played a bit last year, but is approaching his first full season as a starter in his last year with the Buckeyes. He’ll have something to prove with a few younger players behind him in the pecking order who could challenge him for that spot later in the year.With the other four starters already established, look for Farris to make a statement as a dominant force in Saturday’s exhibition.4. Tie: Redshirt-freshmen wide receivers Terry McLaurin and Parris CampbellOSU wide receivers coach Zach Smith has already said McLaurin and Campbell aren’t quite ready to be contributors on offense, but the Spring Game could be a chance to showcase their talents.Both were four-star recruits coming out of high school, according to ESPN, and have a full year of practice with the Buckeyes under their belt. With Evan Spencer and Devin Smith both gone, OSU needs depth at receiver, and might give this young duo a look if one of them stands out.5. Redshirt-junior running back Warren BallLike Dunn, Ball hasn’t had a ton of impact as a Buckeye. A three-star recruit who came to OSU as a hometown prospect, Ball has totaled just 31 carries for 161 yards in his collegiate career. Now he’s buried behind Elliott, Samuel, Dunn and possibly incoming freshman Mike Weber on the depth chart, and shouldn’t expect an increase in playing time this year.This spring might be his last-ditch chance to make an impact as a Buckeye, or, like Collier, he could use a big day on Saturday to springboard a transfer to a smaller program. read more

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Home Is Where The Hot March Madness Tickets Are

Saturday248.45136.402,825 There are eight cities hosting March Madness games this weekend, but none with ticket sales hotter than Louisville, Ky.; Omaha, Neb.; and Seattle. That’s what happens when NCAA tournament games are basically home games.The demand for tickets there shows how valuable ostensible home games are to ticket sellers, if not to fairness lovers. Kentucky, Kansas and Gonzaga — the first or second highest-ranked teams facing off in the hot-ticket cities — all play their home games less than 300 miles from their tournament host cities. Omaha gets a double dip of local teams, with No. 7 Wichita State playing there as well.To get the list, I used data provided by two online ticket marketplaces, ScoreBig and SeatGeek. Connor Gregoire, a SeatGeek spokesman, sent data based on sales made via the site’s ticket search engine. Alison Burnham, vice president of pricing and analytics for ScoreBig, sent data for tickets available on her site and elsewhere on the secondary market.I compared average prices for top-tier seats, and, separately, for the cheap seats. Also, some sessions are more attractive than others — people would rather go to a weekend session than one during the week, probably both because of the convenience and because weekend sessions tend to feature tighter games. In addition, weeknights beat weekdays, and Fridays beat Thursdays, perhaps because it’s easier to travel without taking two days off work. Since 2011, Friday afternoon sessions have averaged 19 percent higher prices for the best seats, 30 percent higher prices for the cheaper seats and 26 percent more sales on SeatGeek. Check out FiveThirtyEight’s March Madness predictions. Thursday afternoon$131.95$67.802,175 Friday afternoon156.7588.052,740 Thursday evening163.0087.552,235 SESSIONLOWER SEATSUPPER SEATSTICKETS SOLD Sunday233.70130.752,760 So I compared apples to apples: How did Thursday afternoon sessions, for instance, compare to average prices for that session this year?After controlling for variables unrelated to which teams were playing, Louisville was clearly the hottest ticket among the four cities holding Thursday/Saturday sessions. Omaha and Seattle were the Friday/Sunday winners.1Venues sell four types of tickets: For each of the two round-of-64 sessions, for the single round-of-32 session, and for all three sessions combined. In each host city, I looked at ticket demand for each of the four ticket types in three ways: prices of more-expensive seats, prices of cheap seats and volume of ticket sales. That’s 12 points of comparison in all. Louisville and Omaha were above average in 11 of the 12 categories for their sessions. Seattle was above average in every ticket-price category, though below average in three of the four ticket-sale-volume categories. The ScoreBig data, used as a reality check, was similar, with Pittsburgh also making a strong showing.From a last-minute ticket-buyer’s perspective, the main question might be, how much is the least I can pay to get in? To answer that question, SeatGeek sent along daily figures for the ticket at the fifth percentile of listing prices for each session. Even these seats, some of the cheapest available, have stayed expensive for the round-of-64 sessions that feature quasi-home teams in Louisville, Omaha and Seattle. But for other sessions, prices have fallen. For instance, on Wednesday, tickets to the Thursday afternoon session in Louisville — the one that featured four teams not named Kentucky — could be had for just $14. Friday evening186.25107.952,375 read more

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South Australia and Queensland issue further warnings about Australias Resources Super Profits

first_imgThe huge outcry against the new resource tax proposed by the Australian Government continues. It should be replaced with a profits-based regime – but not the scheme currently proposed by the Federal Government, according to the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy (SACOME). SACOME issued the plea today just days after warning that up to A$40 billion worth of mining projects in South Australia could stall because of the proposed Resources Super Profits Tax (RSPT). SACOME’s Chief Executive Jason Kuchel, said “Proper consultation by the Federal Government with the Australian resources sector is the only way now to make a transition to a fair and workable profits-based regime. “Had the Federal Government initiated this consultative interface in the first place, the current taxation impasse between the nation’s mining sector and the Government over the contentious proposed Resources Super Profits Tax (RSPT) could have been avoided. The industry is not opposed to tax reform or a transition to a profit-based tax regime on resources. The industry generally acknowledges that state-based minerals royalties systems in Australia are now outdated, unnecessarily complex, ad hoc and differ from state to state.“A well designed profits-based scheme has the potential for more equitable taxation, while protecting the international competitiveness of our mining sector. It could provide differentiation across the resource commodities spectrum where extraction costs and realisable value vary wildly. However, the scheme currently proposed adds to the complexity and imposes an unrealistic burden on projects.“Delays by the Federal Government in making substantial amendments to its RSPT are costing the industry in real terms, as existing and potential investors head for more favourable investment destinations overseas – leaving the Australian resources sector to languish in uncertainty. Furthermore, State Governments are rushing in to shore up their share of the tax pie by in some cases, increasing royalties ahead of the proposed 2012 RSPT rebates.“Any increase in South Australia’s royalty rates will only further dampen investor confidence in the sector in the foreseeable future. This would be yet another unwanted ramification of the broader RSPT proposals. SACOME proposes that any profits based regime be applied prospectively, that is, for new projects only, with the option for existing producers to voluntarily opt into the system from their current royalty regimes.”SACOME also called today for “at least some version of the industry’s much requested flow through share scheme” to be introduced so that at least unused tax deductions by miners could flow through to shareholders as an ‘exploration tax credit’.“If the Federal Government is wanting to give the public greater participation in the country’s minerals industry, a flow through shares scheme is one way the Government could do this,” Kuchel said.SACOME is currently undertaking an independent audit of all South Australian exploration and mining projects to determine the actual impact of the proposed RSPT and other reform measures.Independent financial analysis of the potential impacts of the resources super tax in Queensland has thrown the future of new multi-billion dollar mining projects into grave doubt, Queensland Resources Council (QRC) Chief Executive Michael Roche said today. Commenting on the release in Canberra of an analysis of new project scenarios by tax specialists KPMG, Roche said the outlook for Queensland mineral industry investment was disastrous for copper, gold, nickel and highly damaging for thermal coal.“The bottom line finding is that under the resource super tax, new copper, gold and nickel mines in Queensland simply don’t get off the ground while the net present value of new thermal coal projects is slashed by 57%,” Roche said. “This is not a theoretical forecast but the result of feeding real world financial and corporate data into the sort of financial model actually used by resource companies in making investment decisions. Based on what KPMG has concluded, new projects proposed for the North West Minerals Province and the Galilee Basin in particular are now in jeopardy as a result of the super tax.“Xstrata Copper’s decision to suspend its north Queensland metals exploration program has been vindicated by the KPMG report, while the outlook for some A$20 billion worth of new coal mine investments in the Galilee Basin must also be under a cloud. Given the potential impact on new nickel mines, the report also raises questions over the ability of Townsville’s Yabulu refinery to move from a reliance on imported ores to local product,” he saidRoche said the report made international comparisons to show the degree to which Australian tax rates will be uncompetitive under the new super tax. It confirmed that Australia will have the highest effective tax rates of all comparable investment destinations benchmarked by KPMG.last_img read more

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Trump says to prosecute migrants you have to take the children away

first_imgTrump says to prosecute migrants ‘you have to take the children away’ US officials say more than 2,300 children have been separated from their parents or guardians since early May. 19,084 Views https://jrnl.ie/4080296 161 Comments By AFP Tuesday 19 Jun 2018, 8:45 PM We want ultimately a merit-based system where people come in based on merit.Hammering home the need to combat smugglers who he said “game the system”, Trump accused the media of helping human traffickers.“Those who apply for asylum legally at ports of entry are not prosecuted. The fake news media back there doesn’t talk about that,” he charged.“They are fake,” he said. “They are helping these smugglers and these traffickers like nobody would believe.”‘Using children as pawns’The president has accused Democrats of provoking the crisis by blocking legislation to combat illegal immigration.Many Republican lawmakers are also deeply uncomfortable with the separation policy.Trump said: “We want to end the border crisis by finally giving us the legal authorities and the resources to detain and remove illegal immigrant families all together and bring them back to their country.”The Republican-controlled House of Representatives is expected to consider two immigration bills.One is a hardline measure favoured by conservatives, and the other a compromise bill – which the White House has signalled has Trump’s support – that would end family separations, protect so-called Dreamer immigrants brought to the country as children, pay for boosted border security and curtail legal immigration.Today’s Republican huddle will be closely watched, in part to see whether any lawmakers directly confront the president.Several House Republicans face tough re-election fights in November, and some may worry that public outrage over the family separations could hurt their chances.Democrats say the crisis is of Trump’s own making, and accuse him of using children as pawns.© – AFP 2018 Image: Chris Kleponiscenter_img Image: Chris Kleponis Share247 Tweet Email Jun 19th 2018, 8:45 PM US PRESIDENT DONALD Trump has defended the “zero tolerance” policy leading to thousands of migrant families being split on the US border as the only effective way to fight illegal immigration.“I don’t want children taken away from parents”, he told a gathering of small business owners, before adding: “When you prosecute the parents for coming in illegally, which should happen, you have to take the children away.”“We don’t have to prosecute them, but then we are not prosecuting them for coming in illegally. That’s not good.”US officials say more than 2,300 children have been separated from their parents or guardians since early May, when the administration announced its push to arrest and charge anyone illegally crossing the US-Mexico border, regardless of whether they were seeking asylum.Since children cannot be sent to the facilities where their parents are held, they are separated from them.A chorus of critics – rights groups, Christian evangelicals, former US first ladies and some within the president’s own Republican party – are demanding an immediate end to the family separations.But a defiant Trump has vowed America will not become a “migrant camp”.“We don’t want people pouring into our country,” he told today’s gathering. Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

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Decision day 2016 arrives in Clark County

first_imgMore than 50 percent of Clark County residents have returned their ballots ahead of Tuesday’s election.“I always feel hopeful our voters will exercise their right to vote and they still have time,” said Clark County Elections Supervisor Cathie Garber.The county’s election office believes the county is on track to reach the projected 82 percent voter turnout.Since the August primary, 11,750 new people have registered to vote in the county. Last month, the county issued 272,553 general election ballots.Garber said on Tuesday morning that 15,238 had been received in the mail and from collected from drop boxes overnight, bringing voter turnout to 58.37 percent.On Monday afternoon, lines were already forming at the Clark County Elections Office, where some people were waiting to drop off their ballot while others hoped to get a replacement ballot.She reminded Clark County residents that its not too late to vote.To avoid the lines, it’s possible to fill out a replacement ballot online at www.clarkvotes.org and drop it off at one of the county’s drop boxes. Ballots must be dropped at a ballot box by 8 p.m. or postmarked by Tuesday to be valid.Despite national cries of a “rigged election,” Garber assured voters there are several layers of security to ensure every vote is counted.“All we care about here is counting your ballot properly and making sure your vote counts,” Garber said.Statewide, more than 2 million ballots have been returned to county elections offices as of Monday evening, or about 48 percent of the 4.27 million ballots that were issued. Normally, 50 percent of ballots are returned during election week.last_img read more

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Clark County Fair ramps up flies high

first_imgDestin Cantrell accomplished a lifelong dream last month when he won a gold medal at the X Games, but soon after, it was back to work.Cantrell won gold in the Moto X Best Whip category while competing in his first X Games. A whip is when a rider angles the tail end of their bike forward while in the air and brings it back behind them before landing. During his gold medal ride, Cantrell nearly spun around 180 degrees before returning to his original position.He showed off his whipping skills Wednesday at the Clark County Fair during the motocross and special bike performance. Cantrell spends most of his year traveling around performing in events like Wednesday’s more than competing in national competitions.“It’s pretty unreal,” said Cantrell, who started riding at 4 and competing professionally at 15. “While it’s been a goal to win at the X Games, this is really what I love to do. This is my job. We do maybe 50 shows like this a year, almost every weekend. We’re on the road all the time, but it’s worth it to get out here and see the fans up close and get to meet them after the show.”For other riders, like Robert Haslam, the Clark County Fair gig is welcome because it’s a chance to spend the night at home.last_img read more

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Cricket betting gang busted two held

first_imgMangalhat: West Zone Task Force sleuths on Saturday busted cricket betting gang and arrested two persons. The police seized Rs 35,000, nine cell phones and one laptop from their possession. According to Task Force, on reliable information they raided on a house in Rahimpura under Mangalhat police station limits and arrested Prem Singh (34) and Akash Singh (20). Also Read – Secunderabad: Major General N Srinivas Rao makes farewell visit to AOC Advertise With Us The accused were accepting cricket betting from the known and unknown punters directly and indirectly over cell phones by watching in Television on ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup-2019 match in between Pakistan Vs Afghanistan on Saturday in England. The apprehended accused along with seized property were handed over to the SHO, Mangalhat police station for further action.last_img read more

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Watch When late Rajiv Gandhi called Rahul sensitive and Priyanka strongwilled like

first_imgMONEY SHARMA/AFP/Getty ImagesRajiv Gandhi, who was described as a non-politician by many of his contemporaries, had visibly deep-rooted family values. In a documentary titled ‘India’s Rajiv’, the Gandhi family scion had said that his daughter Priyanka is strong-willed like his mother Indira Gandhi. Priyanka was also very close to her grandmother. Rajiv had also said that Rahul was more sensitive.Priyanka had recently made her debut in politics after she was handed over the charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh. It has prompted a debate on her likeness with her grandmother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.From Priyanka’s looks to her handloom sarees and her articulation, the 47-year-old politician and a mother of two does remind us of the fierce politician like Indira Gandhi.Congress had recently dug out an old picture of Priyanka looking all cheerful while playing with her granny to drive across the point that the duo was close and are made for politics. “There are always differences amongst the siblings. Like I and Sanjay Gandhi are not the same. This also holds true for Priyanka and Rahul,” Rajiv had said.Watch the throwback video here:Rajiv Gandhi on Priyanka and Rahul GandhiYoutubeWhat Rajiv Gandhi said about Sonia Gandhi?Soon after Rajiv Gandhi’s death, the opposition parties had consistently attacked his wife Sonia Gandhi for being a foreign national who has no understanding of the Indian society. However, in this documentary, Rajiv supports his Sonia and called her more Indian than many women in the country.”She has adjusted well, understands our culture and has even surpassed me when it comes to holding on to our traditions. So, I really don’t understand the regular criticism thrown at her,” Rajiv told Simi Garewal.However, Rajiv had always opined that Sonia Gandhi didn’t want to join politics. “She tours with me to remote corners of the country and connects with the people. But, I don’t think she has taken a liking for politics. She also travels solo to Amethi, Uttar Pradesh where she supervises eye camps for children. I am really happy at the way she has bonded with the people on the ground,” the former PM added.The current debate around Rafale jet controversy is also reminiscent of the similar criticism that was levelled against Rajiv Gandhi during the Bofors gun scandal in the late 1980s where he was charged with corruption.”I really don’t understand Indian press. In the first two years of my tenure in Prime Minister’s office, they thought I can do nothing wrong and now they say I can do nothing right. Where is the neutrality, balance? The truth always lies somewhere in-between.” Rajiv told Simi Garewal.Watch part 2 of India’s Rajiv here:Part 2 of the documentary series India’s RajivYoutubelast_img read more

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YO Baltimore Helps OutofSchool Youth

first_imgA youth oriented group, Youth Opportunity (YO!) Baltimore, helps serve out-of-school youth and young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 at two youth-friendly centers in East and West Baltimore.  The program helps members build important life skills and help young people increase their wage earnings and educational attainment.YO! Baltimore was founded in 2000 is operated by the Baltimore City Mayor’s Office of Employment Development’s Youth Services division.  The program is funded by the Mayor and Baltimore City Council, and works in partnership with the Baltimore City Department of Juvenile Services, Baltimore City Public Schools, Civic Works, the Historic East Baltimore Community Action Coalition, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health/Center for Adolescent Health, and Sinai Hospital.For many students, YO! Baltimore gives them an alternative educational route after facing challenges in traditional classroom settings, and it also gives many of the students second chances.Many of the teenagers and people in their 20s who come to the organization for assistance face major challenges.  Three-quarters of the members left high school without finishing, another quarter of them have children, some have criminal records, some are in foster care, some are homeless.The program helps students receive their high school diploma and mentors them to become valuable assets in the city’s workforce, because even for young adults without such difficulties, it’s hard to find a job.Ernest Dorsey, assistant director of the Mayor’s Office of Employment Development who leads the Youth Services division, commented on the impact the program has made on many of the member’s lives.“There are not many large programs in Baltimore City that are focusing on kids who are out of school and out of the workplace. But we are working with 700-800 young people a year,” said Dorsey.  “The mayor has realized that that is an important population, and the mayor and city council actually allocated funding to support this project once the U.S. Department of Labor funds ended.”Lois Mitchell, acting program director at YO! Eastside Center, says it is “gratifying to see young people that want to make a change in their lives” and that it is great the program can “help them and see them realize their hopes and dreams.”Since being founded, YO! has provided academic, career/job training, advocacy, mentoring, health and social support services to more than 7,000 out-of-school, out-of-work city youth.“It’s really preparing young people for future workforce, giving them that exposure that perhaps they did not get before they left school,” Dorsey said. “We work with young people who have graduated, but haven’t made that next step to employment or post-secondary and so they are still searching for what they want to do.  We certainly help them try to identify that particular area as well.”Youth Opportunity Baltimore hosted a special graduation event in June for its 2014 class of 93 young adults. Fifty-seven of the students graduated from YO! Academy, which is an alternative high school that operates in partnership with Baltimore City Public Schools.  The other 36 students earned their Maryland high school diplomas through the city’s two YO! Baltimore centers in East and West Baltimore.  The ceremony was held at Johns Hopkins University’s Shriver Hall, and Shina Parker, a local entrepreneur and CEO, delivered the keynote address.Lois Mitchell said many alumni from the YO! program come back every day to help those who are in the program now.  She has even witnessed people who were in the program 10-12 years ago coming back to help. She says it helps to give current students a model of what they can be by alumni returning and saying, “I was here and this is where I am now.”This summer, YO! members are participating in multiple workforce readiness activities and projects, as they continue to work towards earning their GED. One of the job readiness activities is the Sherwin-Williams Certified Renovators Training, which was provided at no cost by Sherwin-Williams. This training program teaches its participants proper painting techniques and gives them skills to find work with painting contractors.The week-long session covers how to prepare an area for painting, how to determine how much and what kind of materials are needed, proper painting techniques, dressing for the job, properly cleaning the work area, along with other topics. Participants receive hands-on experience by completing a painting project at the Westside YO! Center, and all YO! members who complete the training will receive an EPA certification in lead paint usage and removal. This is the third year that Sherwin-Williams has partnered with YO! Baltimore to offer this training to YO! members.last_img read more

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Computer masters Civilization after reading the instructions

first_imgAhh, Watson. Your performance on Jeopardy let the world know that computers were about more than just storing and processing data the way computers always have. Watson showed us all that computers were capable of thinking in very human ways, which is both an extremely exciting and mildly frightening prospect.A research group at MIT has been working on a project along the same lines — a computer that can process information in a human-like manner and then apply what it’s learned to a specific situation. In this case, the information was the instruction manual for the classic PC game Civilization. After reading the manual, the computer was ready to do battle with the game’s AI. The result: 79% of the time, the computer was victorious.This is an undeniably impressive development, but we’re clearly not in any real danger until the computer decides to man up and play without reading the instructions like any real gamer would. MIT tried that as well, and while a 46% success rate doesn’t look all that good percentage-wise, it’s pretty darn amazing when you remember this is a computer playing Civilization with no orientation of any kind. I’ve got plenty of friends that couldn’t compete with that, though they all insist it’s because the game was boring and they hated it.The ultimate goal of the project was to prove that computers were capable of processing natural language the way we do — and actually learning from it, not merely spitting out responses the way an intelligent voice response (IVR) system does, for example. A system like this could one day power something like a tricorder, diagnosing symptoms based on a cavernous cache of medical data. Don’t worry, doctors, it’s going to be a while before computers actually replace you.More at MIT and the original research paperlast_img read more