GST Council trims rate on electric vehicles chargers to 5 pc

first_imgNew Delhi: The high-powered GST Council on Saturday decided to reduce the tax rate on electric vehicles (EVs) to 5 per cent from the existing 12 per cent, a move aimed at accelerating the adoption of eco-friendly mobility solutions. The new Goods and Services Tax (GST) rate on EVs will be effective from August 1, the finance ministry said in a statement after the 36th meeting of the GST Council. The GST rate on all EVs has been reduced from 12 per cent to 5 per cent. Additionally, the tax rate on chargers or charging stations for EVs has been slashed from 18 per cent to 5 per cent. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The council also approved GST exemption for hiring of electric buses (of carrying capacity of more than 12 passengers) by local authorities from August 1, the statement said. The meeting, chaired by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, was held via video conferencing. The GST Council, headed by the union finance minister, has state finance ministers as members. It also took certain decisions regarding changes in GST law. The last date for filing of intimation, in Form GST CMP-02, for availing the option of payment of tax (by exclusive supplier of services) has been extended from July 31 to September 30, the statement added. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday Further, the last date for furnishing statement containing the details of the self-assessed tax in Form GST CMP-08 for the June quarter (by taxpayers under composition scheme) has been extended to August 31. The earlier deadline was July 31. The central government has been taking initiative to popularise environment friendly electric vehicles. In the Union Buget 2019-20, the government provided additional income tax deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on the interest paid on loans taken to purchase EVs. Besides, customs duty has been exempted on certain parts of EVs to further incentivise e-mobility in the country. The Centre has also approved Rs 10,000 crore to encourage faster adoption of EVs in the country under the FAME II scheme, which aims to encourage faster adoption of such vehicles by right incentives and charging infrastructure.last_img read more

Nissans exchair Ghosn runs fever while in detention

first_imgTOKYO — The lawyer for Nissan’s former chairman Carlos Ghosn, who is being held on charges of falsifying financial reports, says the 64-year-old businessman is suffering from a fever.Ghosn’s lawyer Motonari Ohtsuru said Thursday that doctors at the Tokyo Detention Center said he should rest after running a fever of 38.8 C (101.8 F) late Wednesday.Visits to Ghosn by consular officials and lawyers were postponed.On Tuesday, Ghosn told a Tokyo court he was innocent, in his first public appearance since his Nov. 19 arrest. The court rejected an appeal by Ghosn’s lawyers for his release from detention.During the hearing Tuesday, Ghosn appeared much thinner than before he was arrested. Earlier, he had asked for more comfortable conditions than are usually provided at the detention centre.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Saffron brigade wont be coming back to Delhi

first_imgBalurghat/Gangarampur/Berhampur (South Dinajpur/Murshidabad): Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee alleged on Friday that BJP and RSS are backing the Congress candidate in Berhampur and in the same breath, said the saffron party will not be coming to power in Delhi.She was addressing a mammoth rally at Berhampur. Earlier in the day, Banerjee addressed two more rallies at Balurghat and Gangarampur in South Dinajpur. Without naming sitting Congress MP Adhir Chowdhury, she said: “He does not stay in Murshidabad and his only business is to criticise Trinamool Congress. On the last day of the Parliament, he gained support from BJP by calling Trinamool Congress a party of thieves. Who is honest? Saradha was set up in the 1980s and CPI(M) and Congress leaders were involved. But no action was taken against them. The Congress leaders have betrayed the voters as they follow Congress during the day, BJP in the afternoon and CPI(M) at night,” adding that “RSS is backing Congress in Berhampur.” Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe Trinamool supremo said BJP will not be able to make a comeback in the Lok Sabha polls. “From where will they get seats? In Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Bengal they will get zero seats. In Uttar Pradesh the number of seats will be reduced. In Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh BJP cannot do well. From where will they get seats to form the government?” she asked. In Murshidabad district, Congress got two seats in Berhampur and Jangipur while CPI(M) had bagged the Murshidabad seat in 2014. Banerjee said when she was in Congress, she had come to Murshidabad several times with Mannan Hossain. She had cordial relations with veteran leaders of the district like Abdus Sattar and Atish Chandra Sinha. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highway”We had to take part in the general election within 22 days of setting up Trinamool Congress in 1998. I could not come to the district and reach out to the people,” she regretted. In Balurghat and Gangarampur, Banerjee urged the voters not to cast their votes in favour of BJP. “If BJP is voted back to power there will be no democracy in India. The society will be divided and the economic condition of the country will become worse. In the past five years, BJP has not done anything,” she said. Stating that all-round development has taken place in South Dinajpur, she said: “There is not a single family that has not been benefitted by the schemes of the state government. The farmers have been greatly benefitted as the state government is paying the premium of the crop insurance. The annual income of the farmers has gone up three times. Kanyashree has benefitted the girl students enormously. Under Khadya Sathi, people are getting rice at Rs 2/kilogram.” She said the time has come when people should think before casting their votes. “Rest assured that Trinamool will play a major role in the formation of the new government in Delhi. There will be a secular and pro-development government, where the interest of all sections of people will be protected,” she said. Banerjee also urged the first-time voters to cast their votes in favour of Trinamool Congress. “Don’t vote for CPI(M) and Congress as it will strengthen the hand of BJP. Vote for Trinamool Congress to set up a democratic government at the Centre,” she said.last_img read more

The ACC Is Having A Bowl Season For The Ages

2015SEC119+9.2+1.7+25.6+5.9 Expected wins and point differentials are according to pre-bowl Elo ratings. Conferences classified as “independent” were excluded from the ranking.Source: College Football at Sports-Reference.com Big 1264+7.3+0.9+19.1+2.7 Pac-1263-10.3-0.4+5.8+1.5 CONFERENCEBOWLSWINSPOINT DIFF./GAMEWINSPOINT DIFF./GAMEWINS Sun Belt64+5.8+1.7+1.4+1.0 VS. EXPECTEDVS. FBS AVERAGE 2013SEC107+3.1+1.0+19.5+4.6 Big Ten103-4.2-1.5+6.4+0.8 Which conference is winning the 2016-17 bowl season? MWC74+2.9+0.1+2.9+0.1 CUSA74+1.2+0.5-2.1-0.0 Expected wins and point differentials are according to pre-bowl Elo ratingsSource: College Football at Sports-Reference.com 1996SEC55+10.0+2.2+27.0+4.0 Independent22-8.5+0.4-6.1+0.5 2002Big Ten75+8.9+2.6+19.8+3.9 It’s also the second-biggest gap for any conference since 1936, trailing only the SEC’s 5.9 excess wins of a season ago.1If you’re curious, here’s the all-time top 10: 2008SEC86+7.0+2.3+18.1+4.2 VS. EXPECTEDVS. FBS AVERAGE 2006SEC96+9.7+2.1+20.7+4.1 2016ACC118+10.3+3.2+18.5+5.0 If Clemson knocks off the historically dominant Crimson Tide in the CFP championship game — and Elo gives that scenario a 33 percent chance of happening — the ACC would take over the No. 1 slot.2Again — this is, in part, a function of there being so many more bowls nowadays. If we limit ourselves to conferences with at least six bowl entries since 1970 (the year bowls stopped matching Division I-A/FBS teams with non-FBS ones), the 2015 SEC ranks seventh on a per-game basis, and the 2016 ACC 16th. But it’s also worth remembering that as a conference’s bowl contingent grows, the quality of its worst bowl-bound teams also decreases, depressing its per-game rating.Now, there are a few caveats to be had there. Although the ACC has won far more than we’d expect against a very tough slate of opponents, it’s also gotten a little lucky in the process. According to the Pythagorean formula, which generates an expected record based on the points a team scores and allows, the ACC’s bowl record should be more like 7-4 than 8-3, which matters when discussing the razor-thin margins atop all-time leaderboards. Relatedly, its adjusted scoring margin (+18.5) doesn’t even rank No. 1 this season; the Big 12 has a +19.1 mark, albeit in half as many games. By contrast, the SEC was +25.6 in bowls last season.ACC teams were favored by Elo in only four of the conference’s 11 bowls, and although one of those favorites lost (Pittsburgh in the Pinstripe Bowl), the rest of the ACC’s bowl teams picked up the slack with five upset victories. (Including Clemson’s 31-0 rout of Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.3Although Vegas listed Clemson as 1-point favorites, computer power rankings such as Elo and ESPN’s Football Power Index were (wrongly) slightly higher on the Buckeyes.) When the SEC won nine bowls last season, it was only a slight improvement on the 7.3 they were expected to win going into the bowls. The ACC’s eight wins this year are much more out of step with the 4.8 wins Elo would have predicted, a gap that will grow to 5.5 wins if Clemson upsets Alabama.Regardless of how much good fortune has been involved, however, the ACC has been the class of this year’s bowls. And a Clemson victory on Monday night would add more than just one bragging right to the conference’s trophy case. ACC118+10.3+3.2+18.5+5.0 SEC126-0.5-0.3+11.0+2.7 1998Big Ten55+9.7+2.5+25.9+4.2 2014SEC127-0.5+0.0+14.0+4.0 After Oklahoma cruised past Auburn in Monday night’s Sugar Bowl, college football’s 2016-17 bowl season is nearing its finale. The only game left? Next Monday’s national championship game between Alabama and Clemson, a rematch of last year’s title tilt. That game — a 45-40 Alabama victory — concluded a dominant season for the Crimson Tide’s Southeastern Conference, one that punctuated the first nine-win bowl season by a single conference in college history.But in a surprise twist, it’s Clemson and the Atlantic Coast Conference — not Alabama and the SEC — that are winning the bowl battle once we adjust for expectations. And with the Tigers carrying the conference’s banner into the title game, the ACC has a chance to top last year’s SEC for the most impressive bowl season ever.The ACC has gone 8-3 this bowl season, already the second-most wins by a conference in a single bowl season since the AP poll era started in 1936. (Of course, because bowl season has become so bloated in recent years, this year’s ACC teams have also played in the third-most bowls ever, tied with four other conferences since 2013.) But the ACC’s record is still notable because of its difficulty: FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings — which estimate the relative quality of every FBS team — would have expected an average team to go 3-8 against ACC teams’ bowl opponents, losing by an average of 2.7 points per game. Instead, ACC teams have won by 7.6 points per game. That five-win gap between the ACC’s bowl record and what Elo would have expected from an average group of teams is easily the biggest of any conference this season: 2007SEC97+4.3+2.6+15.7+4.9 Most dominant bowl seasons by conference, 1936-2016 MAC60-4.5-2.1-5.7-2.3 YEARCONFERENCEBOWLSWINSPOINT DIFF./GAMEWINSPOINT DIFF./GAMEWINS American72-9.5-2.5-3.0-1.5 read more

Who Are The NBAs Best Defenders Right Now

For the past few seasons, the best defenders in the NBA have been some combination of Draymond Green, Rudy Gobert and Kawhi Leonard. But with Leonard and Gobert out for all or much of the season so far and Green’s production falling off just a bit, we’ve got some new blood in contention to be the NBA’s best defender.To put a number to this, we’ll use data from Second Spectrum that shows us both the total number of shots defended by a player and how much he affected those shots. There are a few ways to get at this, but we’re going to use “quantified shot probability” (qSP) — which determines the expected value of shots defended using shot distance, shot location and defender position, among other variables — and “quantified shot making” (qSM) — which subtracts the expected effective field goal percentage on those shots from the actual eFG to determine how much of an effect the defender had. In other words, does the defender make shots worse? And if so, by how much?We’ve used metrics like this in the past, but the rub with this set is it adjusts for who’s taking the shot, meaning weak defenders who guard bad shooters don’t get as much credit, and defenders tasked with guarding superstars aren’t punished for their assignment — the star’s excellence is baked into the stat.The per possession numbers will look a little different from the overall effect — players like Tarik Black and Marreese Speights have defended a lot of shots very well in short minutes — but this chart should demonstrate that there is a wide spread on defender effect. What we’re missing here, though, is how many shots a defender actually affects. Kevin Durant, Golden State WarriorsThe Warriors are unfair. Draymond Green — for my money the best defensive player in the league — has for whatever reason been a little off during the first quarter of the season, possibly because the Warriors can sleepwalk to a bare-minimum 2-seed. He’s not been bad, mind you, just not quite as dominant as usual. That’s left quite a lot of slack in the Golden State scheme, and Durant has picked up more than his fair share of it. Golden State ranks eighth in defensive rating, down from second a season ago, but that almost feels like a threat more than a falloff given how flat the team has looked at times. Beware, it says, this is a top 10 defense even while almost completely half-assing things, just on the virtue of Kevin Durant showing up to work. Durant has been improving as a defender for years, going back to his time with the Thunder. (If you ever go back and watch the 2016 series between OKC and San Antonio, watch Durant on defense — he was the best defensive big man in that series.) His style is also entirely his own: KD gives up relatively “great” shots — ones his opponents would be expected to turn into 52.3 eFG against an average defender, or about what Austin Rivers gives you as a defender. Not great. But because Durant is so long, so mobile and so smart positionally, the actual shots against him fall at a rate of just 45.2 eFG. This still happens within the overall Golden State system — Andre Iguodala and Steph Curry have similar opponent eFG numbers, albeit on fewer shots defended — but Durant’s role has him not only locking down his own man but also covering up for lapses by his teammates.Green may remain the more important defender for the Warriors — he’s the anchor, and what he does from his position is impossible to replicate. But Durant’s play so far has been the strongest on a Golden State defense that should end up being a top-3-type unit, at minimum. But despite the limitations, these metrics are a pretty good way to look at who’s having the best defensive season. A few players stand out on the list: Honorable mentionGiannis Antetokounmpo and Joel Embiid have both been outstanding through the first quarter of the season, but they don’t have quite the same track record as some of the players listed above. Just the same, neither seems to be a fluke. We’ll be a little more certain how permanent their new defensive excellence is by the All-Star break. The same goes for Kristaps Porzingis, who last season was in the tier just behind Gobert and Green for overall defensive value, but this year fell off early before making up some ground in the past few weeks.Some others seem more like early-season mirages — Josh Richardson, Gary Harris and Eric Gordon are all having excessively good years by the metrics but are playing way above the levels they had in previous seasons.Check out our latest NBA predictions. Anthony Davis, New Orleans PelicansFrom the time he was a rookie, Anthony Davis has had all the tools. He’d block shots and steal alley-oops and tug on his shorts and check the opposing point guard 30 feet from the basket. He came into the league as a destructive defensive force, but for reasons ranging from injury to scheme to sheer offensive burden, Davis’s aggregate effect on the defensive end hasn’t always lived up to the promise of those moments. This season, it has. Davis ranks seventh in the league in shots defended overall, and the defense gets 12.7 points per 100 possessions worse when he sits down. That’s nearly double his defensive on/off split from last season, which was already by far the best of his career.Partly this is because of his partnership with DeMarcus Cousins. Defensive intensity hasn’t always been Cousins’s strong point, and that’s still true today, but he has defended the most shots in the league, and done so while holding opponents to a middle-of-the-road 51.4 eFG on shots he defends. Not great, certainly, but it’s a respectable backstop for the defense.Because of Cousins’s role as a reliable constant, Davis is free to cover more ground without making risky moves to get back into plays. And because of that, his personal foul rate is at an all-time low (2.6 fouls per 100 possessions). This allows Davis to do what he does best — stick to his man, rotate to help in the paint without overextending, and blitz spot-up shooters on the perimeter faster than anyone else his size in the league. Here we’ve got total shots as well as the qSM (the difference a defender makes on each shot) plotted against each other to show who’s affecting how many shots to what degree. This isn’t perfect. For one, a great defender doesn’t simply challenge shots — he denies them from happening, forcing a team to reset its offense. But by the same token, great defenders also work their way back into plays, affecting shots by playing smart help defense and covering acres of ground. Another thing these numbers don’t reflect the is overall quality of the shot — there are a few defenders who don’t depress value of each individual shot by as much as others but who force opponents into low-quality shots in general (through hard work and smart positioning) so that the overall effect is the same. Marcus Smart, Jaylen Brown and Al Horford, Boston CelticsThe Celtic defense has continued to crush opponents. Boston is 18-4, with a league-leading defensive rating (100), the second-lowest effective field goal percentage allowed (48.6) and a roster full of live-bodied defenders who can switch practically any assignment. Even Kyrie Irving is chipping in on the effort. But while every Celtic is doing his part, some parts are more critical than others. It’s undeniably been the play from Smart, Brown and Horford that has carried the Celts so far.Smart does not possess the most graceful set of skills, but what he provides is unmistakable to anyone watching. He’s all over the floor, hounding ball handlers, bodying up on bigger players in the post and bumping cutting players he isn’t even guarding, like a middle linebacker jamming a slot receiver.Brown is a little different. While the Boston defense is built on interchangeable pieces switching and denying an offense space, it also needs players who can stick to their man across multiple screens, then square up and check their man as he plants and drives. Brown has stepped into that role and dominated so far. He can fight over screens (or just outright avoid them) to allow the defense to keep its shape, and he has the quicks to shut down first steps with the length to challenge pull-up attempts.Horford, meanwhile, does not have nearly the same reputation as the other two, but this season, he looks livelier than he has in the past when making switches, and he has defended the most shots of any Celtic. The newfound agility in space is especially important — because the defense will semi-regularly ask him to survive on an island against a wing, but also because his role at the center of the defense requires him to scuttle shooters who’ve just run over two or three screens trying to escape Smart or Brown. read more

Lavender leads Buckeyes to Big Ten Tournament title

INDIANAPOLIS — The Ohio State women’s basketball team slogged through confetti and streamers as it cut down the nets after claiming its third consecutive Big Ten Tournament title Sunday. Following a Feb. 6 loss to Northwestern at the Schottenstein Center, the Buckeyes had a 4-6 record in Big Ten conference play, and their future seemed bleak. Fast-forward to 3:30 p.m. Sunday. OSU (22-9), the Big Ten Tournament’s No. 5-seeded team, was tipping off in the championship game against No. 2-seeded Penn State (24-9) at Conseco Fieldhouse. Fast-forward again to about 5:25 p.m. At that moment, the Buckeyes were hoisting the Big Ten Tournament championship trophy above their heads at midcourt as confetti showered over them. The title was the fourth in program history. Senior center Jantel Lavender and junior guard Samantha Prahalis propelled the Buckeyes to the victory, grabbing a game-high 23 points apiece. Lavender, Prahalis and sophomore guard Tayler Hill were named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team. Lavender was also named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. The Buckeyes’ heroes of the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds were senior guard Brittany Johnson and Lavender, respectively, and it appeared that Prahalis assumed that role in the first half against Penn State. The Lady Lions led, 12-8, at the first media timeout, thanks to a balanced offensive attack led by junior guard Zhaque Gray. Prahalis had an early answer for Gray, scoring six points in the first half during a 13-4 run that put OSU ahead, 21-12, with just more than 11 minutes until halftime. The teams went on to match each other nearly bucket for bucket, for much of the first half. Prahalis continued to drive the Buckeyes’ offense, accumulating 14 points and three assists. Prahalis said Penn State’s defense allowed her open looks at the basket. “I had a lane,” she said. “Every night is different for me. It’s just what the game brings.” Lavender added nine points of her own as OSU took a 44-39 lead to finish the half. But eight points from Gray and 12 from Penn State sophomore guard Alex Bentley meant the Big Ten title was far from decided. But the Buckeyes were within 20 minutes of accomplishing a goal that seemed unattainable in early February. A determined Lavender opened up a personal 6-0 run to extend the Buckeyes’ lead. Then, a steal and some quick passing led to an easy layup for her, which extended the lead to 59-46 in the second half. OSU supporters cheered, and Lavender signaled to the fans for even more noise as she ran back on defense. Hill drilled a step-back jumper to increase the Buckeyes’ advantage to 63-49 with less than 13 minutes remaining. OSU was on its way. Penn State redshirt sophomore forward Mia Nickson scored 15 points, with 11 coming in the second half. But it wasn’t enough to help the Lady Lions claw back into the contest. Bentley misfired on numerous 3-point attempts as OSU extended its lead. Johnson missed a 15-foot jumper after nearly letting the shot clock expire, and Lavender hauled in the offensive rebound with 2:12 remaining. The Buckeyes retained possession for the remainder of the game, coasting to an 84-70 win. Lavender credited the win, at least in part, to OSU’s experience in prior Big Ten title games. “I definitely think our experience here has helped us win this game,” Lavender said. “I think us having that experience in the last three years (helped us to) just deal with three games in three days.” That’s exactly what the Buckeyes did. OSU had to overcome No. 4-seeded Iowa, No. 1-seeded Michigan State and No. 2-seeded Penn State before the indoor fireworks could be detonated overhead at Conseco Fieldhouse. Each opponent presented a different challenge, but the Buckeyes were up to the task. By virtue of its 10-6 regular-season record in conference play, OSU earned a bye into the tournament’s quarterfinals and began play Friday against the Hawkeyes (22-8). Lavender and Prahalis, the Buckeyes’ top two scorers, were slow to get involved on the offensive end of the court that night, but Johnson picked up the slack. Johnson scored a season-high 23 points on 8-of-16 shooting, and her 7-of-14 shooting from 3-point range was instrumental in OSU’s 71-61 win. “I was just in the zone, I guess,” Johnson said following the game. “I just wanted to step up and help my teammates out. That’s what I did.” After her team suffered elimination from the tournament, Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said Johnson is a threat on the court. “You’ve got to know where she is all the time,” Bluder said. “She is a really, really good 3-point shooter.” On day three of the tournament, OSU played Michigan State (26-5) with a berth in the championship game on the line. Lykendra Johnson, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, was standing between the Buckeyes and a third consecutive tournament title — literally. But Lavender made quick work of her with a historic performance. Lavender torched the Spartans for 37 points, a Big Ten Tournament single-game scoring record, en route to a 72-57 win. Lavender also tied the tournament’s single-game record with 15 field goals on 15-of-20 shooting to help the Buckeyes get to Sunday’s championship game. With his team on the doorstep of history, OSU coach Jim Foster lauded the Buckeyes’ focus after Saturday’s win. “We’re smart enough, patient enough,” Foster said. “Good teams don’t get real high and don’t get real low. We just go about our business.” Despite her record-breaking performance, Lavender did not emphasize her personal accomplishments, but focused instead on what her team did well in its three wins against the Spartans this year. “The times that we’ve played Michigan State our team has really (understood) who we are as a team,” Lavender said. “It’s not any different situation, except for the number by our team is No. 5, and I think we’re playing like the No. 1 seed right now.” Lavender said after Saturday’s win that she “likes playing at Conseco Fieldhouse.” Sunday’s championship game against the Lady Lions afforded her, along with senior teammates Johnson, guard Alison Jackson and forward Sarah Schulze, a chance to exit the arena as Big Ten champion one last time. Foster said the 2010–11 team is better than the previous two teams he coached to Big Ten titles. “I would say this was the best team of the last three,” Foster said. “I think how we won this is a reflection of that.” With the win, the Buckeyes clinched the Big Ten’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. The Buckeyes now await the announcement of their seeding and opponent. With the NCAA Tournament still to come, Prahalis said her team has a good sense of where it is and where it’s been. “We’re very confident,” she said. “We don’t forget where we was a month ago. All we have is each other.” OSU will represent the Big Ten in the NCAA Tournament for the ninth consecutive year. read more

PacifiCorp to spend 20M for fish habitat

first_imgPacifiCorp, which has more than 130,000 customers in Washington, will spend more than $20 million on habitat improvement for salmon and steelhead in the Lewis River watershed.A preliminary decision from the National Marine Fisheries Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service directs the Portland-based utility to develop habitat improvements in the river instead of additional fish passage facilities into Merwin Reservoir, according to PacifiCorp.Regulatory agencies will still review and approve plans ahead of their implementation, and the agencies will also consider whether to require additional fish passage facilities into Yale Reservoir later.“These decisions, which are based on extensive scientific studies, will have significant and long-lasting benefits for salmon and steelhead that call the Lewis River drainage home,” said Mark Sturtevant, managing director of PacifiCorp Renewable Resources, in a news release. “Conserving fish habitat and enhancing fish populations in the Pacific Northwest is important to our communities. Our mission is to conserve this fish habitat and enhance salmon and steelhead populations while producing the low-cost, emission-free electricity our customers count on and care about.”In the late 1990s, the original licenses from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for PacifiCorp’s dams in the North Fork of the Lewis River started to expire, said Todd Olson, director of compliance at PacifiCorp.last_img read more

Juventus give up on Sergej MilinkovicSavic

first_imgJuventus have refused to go beyond 70million euros for the signing of Lazio’s Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, a move that reports from Football Italia suggest it shows they are no longer interested in the midfielder.The Biancocelesti are said to be asking for in excess 120million euros and club president, Claudio Lotito has said that the club have no need to sell unless their valuation is met.The Serbian midfielder who appeared at the World Cup for his country has been drawing a lot of interest from Europe’s top club with Real Madrid and Manchester United also rumoured to be interested in his services.Franck Ribery, FiorentinaFiorentina owner: “Ribery played better than Ronaldo!” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Fiorentina owner Rocco Commisso was left gushing over Franck Ribery’s performance against Juventus, which he rates above that of even Cristiano Ronaldo’s.The Old lady has refused to raise their offer beyond 70million euros and are now believed to have switched their attention elsewhere.In October 2017, Serbia caretaker manager Mladen Krstajić included Milinković-Savić in the squad for friendlies against China and South Korea. In May 2018 he was named in Serbia’s preliminary squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russialast_img read more

Kenai River Sport Fishery Starting July Off With No Bait

first_imgIn 2018, the king salmon runs throughout Cook Inlet have consistently and significantly underperformed ADF&G preseason expectations resulting in restrictions and closures of inriver and marine sport fisheries. The restriction on the Kenai River late-run king salmon fishery is effective 12:01 a.m. July 1 through 11:50 p.m. Tuesday, July 31. Cook Inlet Management Coordinator Matt Miller: “Without restrictions to harvest, the escapement goal for the Kenai River late-run king salmon is not expected to be achieved. Consistent with the management plan, it is warranted to prohibit bait in the sport fishery to achieve the escapement goal and provide reasonable harvest opportunity. The management plan also indicates if bait is prohibited in this sport fishery than the personal use and commercial fishery also experience restrictions. The retention of king salmon is prohibited in the personal use fishery and commercial fishing periods of the Upper Subdistrict, excluding the East forelands, will be open for no more than 48 hours a week.” Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) has implemented a sport fishing restriction on the Kenai River, no bait allowed on the Kenai River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek.center_img This sport fishing regulation restriction is in conjunction with the Kenai River early-run king salmon sport fishing closure issued on June 18. ADF&G will continue to monitor the Kenai River run as it develops and additional actions may be taken depending on the run strength.last_img read more

POLICE LOG for May 24 Injured Turkey Rescued Mailbox Vandalized Teen Missing

WILMINGTON, MA — Here are highlights from the Wilmington Police Log for Thursday, May 24, 2018:A Shawsheen Avenue resident called to report his mailbox was vandalized sometime overnight. (6:43am)Animal Control Officer responded to reports of an injured turkey on Boutwell Street. Officer transported turkey to Tufts in Grafton. (7:40am, 9:56am)A NAPA employee reported a deceased mother opossum with its babies still alive. Animal Control Officer responded. (3:14pm)An anonymous caller reported 2 quads on the roadway on Wabash Road. (3:59pm)A juvenile walked after from the Milestone Group Home on High Street and was entered into NCIC. (4:56pm)A white 2015 Honda Civic and a white 2016 Chevy Cruze were involved in a crash on Main Street. Both vehicles towed. One party complained of head, neck and back pain and was transported by the Fire Department. (5:14pm)A passerby reported a man sitting on the bench on Main Street, near the dog groomer, waiving what appeared to be a hand gun. Police responded. Dog walker in the area did not see anything. (5:18pm)(DISCLAIMER: This information is public information.  An arrest does not constitute a conviction.  Any arrested person is innocent until proven guilty.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip?Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedPOLICE LOG for July 26: 2 Missing Teens; OUI Arrest; Main St. Shut Down Due To Crash; Road Rage IncidentIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for August 2: Vehicle Damages Roadway; Police Called Over Suspicious BehaviorIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for July 25: Wilmington Man Arrested For OUI; Men Carrying Sledgehammers Down Street; Turkeys Causing TrafficIn “Police Log” read more

Seat Minimó concept brings a twee electric car to Geneva

first_img See All 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata review: Club life isn’t for everyone, and that’s OK 50 Photos • reading • Seat Minimó concept brings a twee electric car to Geneva Seat Minimó concept is all about urban mobility Mar 7 • The Ferrari F8 Tributo is the last of the nonhybrid V8s Mar 7 • New Peugeot 208 debuts i-Cockpit with 3D HUD Combo dashboard Post a comment 0 Share your voice 2019 Mazda CX-9 review: Losing its edge? Concept Cars Electric Cars As cars become rolling platforms of technology, we’re starting to see them pop up in odd places. CES is now practically its own auto show, and recently, VW Group’s Spanish division Seat unveiled a concept car at MWC, the world’s biggest phone show, in its hometown Barcelona. But now, it’s made its way to the Geneva Motor Show.To be fair, the Seat Minimó concept is only barely a car. Seat actually refers to it as a quadricycle, taking some aspects of cars and blending them with some aspects of motorcycles. It’s a tiny little guy, with enough space for two people and little else. If you want to bring a passenger and a suitcase, you’ll have to stow the suitcase out back, exposed to the elements.As for the interior, it’s on the minimalist side. The doors are hinged to make it possible for you to get in and out in tight spaces, and the front seat slides forward to offer passenger access. The dashboard is straightforward, with your standard steering wheel and brakes, in addition to a gauge cluster screen that appears to double as an infotainment system.Enlarge ImageIt’s like a Renault Twizy, but way less dorky. Andrew Hoyle/Roadshow That small footprint may not help with hauling, but since this concept is built for urbanites, its tiny dimensions should leave it well suited to handle tight corners and busy streets. It also happens to be electric, which means it’ll be no problem in European city centers that have implemented diesel bans or congestion charges for gas guzzlers. The Minimó concept is designed not to be owned, but to be shared — it’s not something Seat envisions living in your driveway. Instead, it will be out and about all day, lending itself to urbanites in need of a ride. To that end, it’ll keep downtime to a minimum thanks to a hot-swappable battery that slides out from underneath the body. Seat estimates this could reduce car-sharing operation costs by some 50 percent, since there’ll be little if any downtime. Its battery is small, but since everything is small, range clocks in at a decent 62 miles.Other bits of the concept’s tech are also aimed at the mobility market. There’s no physical key — access is found digitally, using a smart device. That same device can bring navigation into the car by way of wireless Android Auto. The concept relies on human drivers, but it could theoretically be outfitted to run autonomously, becoming even more efficient by minimizing the time it spends idle. Apr 17 • The 2020 Jaguar XE gets its first major visual refresh Geneva Motor Show 2019 Tags Geneva Motor Show 2019 Mobile World Congress 2019 More From Roadshow 2019 Audi TT Roadster review: The exit interview Mar 8 • VW is still ‘100 percent’ investigating a pickup truck for the USlast_img read more

Budget lacks measures to address institutional challenges Unnayan Onneshan

first_img.Unnayan Onneshan (UO), an independent multidisciplinary think-tank, has said the proposed budget for 2018-19 fiscal year lacks measures necessary to address the macroeconomic, medium term and institutional challenges the economy is facing.”The budget speech seems to lack providing prudent and farsighted solutions to the current challenges except it earmarks ambitious targets of expenditure amidst inefficient distribution of resources and cost overrun,” it said its rapid assessment of the new proposed national budget.Inequality has widened on the back of the gap between return on capital and return on labour on the one hand and the persistent primitive accumulation in the form of looting in different sectors of the economy on the other, the think-tank said.Institutional fragility has been evident in the economy, leading different economic sectors to fail to maintain discipline, it said, adding that institutional fragility and political uncertainty are contributing to lack of confidence among investors and entrepreneurs.The UO said in the wake of parliamentary elections, investors may adopt wait-and-see policy about making investment since they are fearful about the process of the transition of power and the subsequent business environment recalling the situation after the national election back in 2014.It said incapacity to implement the budget has been a major challenge in recent years. The rate of implementation has assumed a decreasing trend since FY 2011-12. In FY 2011-12, budget implementation rate was 93 per cent which decreased to 91 per cent in FY 2012-13, 85 per cent in FY 2013-14, 82 per cent in FY 2014-15, 81 per cent in FY 2015-16 and 79 per cent in FY 2016-17.Despite the increasing trend in tax revenue over the years, the tax-GDP ratio is very low compared to global average. In FY 2015-16, Tax-GDP ratio in Bangladesh stood at 8.98 per cent, while it increased slightly to 9 percent and 10.39 per cent in FY 2016-17 and FY 2017-18 respectively.Bangladesh has a regressive tax structure where people with low income have to share relatively larger share of the tax burden due to different forms of indirect taxes. In 2018-19 budget, revenue from income tax and VAT has been estimated to be Tk 1,007.19 billion and Tk 1,105.55 billion respectively. In FY 2018-19, 34 per cent of total NBR revenue would come from taxes on income and profit whereas 53.79 per cent would come from indirect sources, including Value Added Tax and Supplementary Duty, together.The budget has set a target of collecting Tk 3,392.80 billion as revenue receipts. The target seems to fall short since a gap between revenue target and actual collection has been regular, the think-tank said.In the first nine months of the current fiscal year, the revenue collection stood at Tk 1,440 billion against a target of Tk 1,670 billion leaving a shortfall by Tk 230 billion.About the rising operating expenditure, the UO evinces that in the budget for FY 2018-19, a total of Tk 1122.66 billion has been proposed for salary and allowances and interest repayment which constitutes 24.17 per cent of the total budgetary outlay. In addition, in the proposed budget for FY 2018-19, operating expenditure grows by 21 per cent while development expenditure registers a 13 per cent growth.It mentioned that it has been regular phenomenon in Bangladesh that the mass people fear national budget. This is because budget has been the occasion of increase in price of many necessities either directly or indirectly.The measures taken in the budget 2018-19 is likely to increase price of some 19 commodities while reducing price of some 14 commodities.While national budget is directly linked to the living standard of the mass, they have little stake in the formulation of budget. Lack of fiscal accountability in Bangladesh due to limited role of the parliament in budget-making process together with constitutional and systematic rigidities results in inefficiency, poor implementation of budget and misuse of public resources, the think-tank said.It said due to persistent depreciation, the local currency has been exposed to serious pressure. In 2017, local currency has experienced a depreciation of 5 percent against US Dollar. In May 2018, the exchange rate has stood at Tk 83.70 per USD which was Tk 80.69 in August 2017. Depreciation of local currency has added to the inflationary pressure on the mass.Sluggish export growth and cut in the inflow of wage earners’ remittance along with high import payment is exerting pressure on the current account balance. Referring to the deficit in current account balance, the think tank finds that the current account balance recorded a deficit of USD 7.08 billion during July-March, 2017-18 due mainly to a significant trade deficit and lower income from services and primary income accounts compared to that of July-March, 2016-17.High inflationary pressure is increasing the cost of living, thus gradually degrading the living standard of the mass by lowering the consumption capacity of the people with limited income. Statistics suggest that twelve-month average inflation increased to 5.83 per cent in April 2018 from 5.82 per cent in March 2018.Observing institutional fragility in the banking sector due to massive irregularities followed by rise in default loans and resulting capital shortfall, the UO shows that at the end of 2017, total default loans in the banking sector stood at Tk 743.03 billion, representing 9.31 per cent of the gross loan, compared to Tk 621.72 billion in the previous year.Amid chaotic situation in the country’s financial sector and political uncertainty ahead of the national election, foreign investors are increasingly making exit from capital market, the UO said.Private sector investment has been remaining stagnant at below 23 per cent for a decade. It stood at 22.07 per cent of GDP in FY 2014-15, 21.78 per cent in FY 2015-16, 23.1 in FY 2016-17 and 23.25 per cent in FY 2017-18.Meanwhile, it is found that net Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has slumped recently. In 2017, FDI has declined by 7.76 per cent compared to that in the previous yearThe economy of Bangladesh is missing the opportunity to capitalise its demographic dividend. While the GDP growth figure is impressive, the poor rate of quality job creation is characterising it as jobless growth. The economy is presenting disconcerting job scenario with a huge number of people remaining out of work.Referring to the state of jobless growth, the research organisation notes that unemployed population increased to 2.68 million in FY 2016-17 while 1.46 million remained underemployed. In addition, the number of people not in education, employment or training rose to 48.28 million in FY 2016-17, representing 44.25 per cent of the people who are able and ready to work, from 46.6 million in FY 2015-16.If not dealt with effectively, income inequality together with inequality in access to health and social security, multidimensional poverty, and joblessness particularly among the youth may undermine the development already achieved by the county, comments the UO.Calling for prudent and farsighted fiscal management, the research organisation states that proposed actions are inadequate to bring fiscal discipline in the management of revenue, deficit and debt one the one hand and to establish an inclusive society in the absence of distributive reforms in the tax system on the other.last_img read more

Musharraf declared fugitive in Benazir Bhuttos murder trial

first_imgA Pakistan anti-terrorism court has declared former military ruler Pervez Musharraf a fugitive in ex-prime minister Benazir Bhutto’s murder trial, ordering his property confiscated, a court official said Thursday.Musharraf was charged with Bhutto’s 2007 assassination in 2013, but has been in self-imposed exile in Dubai ever since a travel ban was lifted three years later. The official said he had “absconded”.The court also acquitted five men who had been accused of being Taliban militants involved in the conspiracy to murder Bhutto, the Muslim world’s first female prime minister, the official said.However it found two police officers guilty of “mishandling the crime scene”, the court official said, adding they had each been sentenced to 17 years imprisonment and fined 500,000 rupees ($4,700).The verdicts are the first to be issued in the case, and come nearly 10 years after Bhutto was killed in a gun and suicide bomb attack during an election rally in Rawalpindi.Musharraf’s government blamed the assassination on Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, who denied any involvement. He was killed in a US drone attack in 2009.In 2010, a UN report accused Musharraf’s government of failing to give Bhutto adequate protection and said her death could have been prevented.last_img read more

Modi eyes stronger DhakaDelhi relation

first_imgIndian prime minister Narendra Modi (R) shakes hands with Bangladeshi president Mohammad Abdul Hamid prior to a meeting in New Delhi on 31 May 2019. Photo: AFPIndia’s prime minister Narendra Modi on Friday emphasised the importance of taking the Bangladesh-India ties to a new level as ‘it remains the highest priority to India’.He said that this should be done as part of joint efforts to suitably commemorate the centenary of the birth of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 2020 and the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s Liberation in 2021, reports UNB.Modi noted that the bilateral relationship between the two countries, forged in Bangladesh’s liberation war, remained of the highest priority to India.In the past five years, he said, the two countries had demonstrated great maturity and patience in resolving a number of complex pending issues, such as the demarcation of the land boundary.The Indian prime minister met Bangladesh president Abdul Hamid at noon at Hyderabad House in New Delhi and discussed the issues of mutual interests.During the meeting, they expressed great satisfaction at the excellent state of bilateral relations, according to Indian external affairs ministry.The president conveyed felicitations of prime minister Sheikh Hasina, now in Saudi Arabia, who was unable to travel in person because of a prior commitment.He conveyed the invitation of the government of Bangladesh to the Indian prime minister to visit Bangladesh, which was accepted with pleasure.The leaders agreed that dates would be decided through diplomatic channels.The president of Bangladesh was in India to attend the swearing-in event of the new government of India on Thursday.Hamid earlier paid a state visit to India in December 2014, as well as an official visit in March 2018, for the first meeting of the International Solar Alliance.last_img read more

Six killed as lightning strikes parts of Bengal city likely to witness

first_imgKolkata: Six persons were killed after being struck by lightning in three separate incidents in the districts of Nadia, Bankura and Howrah. The incident took place on Wednesday morning when a thunder shower lashed various South Bengal districts. Lightning struck four persons including two brothers in Nadia leading to their deaths. While in separate incidents of lightning, two persons were killed in Bankura and Howrah each.According to Nadia police, the victims were all working in a field at Noamile in Nadia on Wednesday morning when the thundershowers started. The victims are Kalachand Seikh (60), Kamal Seikh (50), Najizul Seikh (30) and Azizul Seikh (25). Najizul and Azizul were two bothers. In another incident, a 58-year-old Kartin Soren was ploughing in Bankura’s Sarenga when he was struck by lightning. The third incident occurred in Howrah’s Panchla. The victim has been identified as Urmila Mondal (42) who was returning home from field work. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe district administrations took prompt action to restore normalcy following the incidents. There was heavy rainfall in some districts for hours causing water logging. Some of the roads became inundated. Nadia and Murshidabad witnessed a storm accompanied by moderate to heavy rainfall causing inconvenience to the commuters. It started raining from 11 am in some districts. The rain accompanied by storm, however, provided relief to the people in these districts as it brought down the temperatures by a few notches. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedThe sky remained overcast in North 24-Parganas, South 24-Parganas and also in the city in the morning hours. The city also received light rainfall on Wednesday morning.According to the weather office, a cyclonic circulation formed over the state that caused rains in the districts. There is also a possibility of thundershowers in the South Bengal districts during the evening in the next few days, the Met department predicted.It may be mentioned here that rain lashed some parts of North 24-Parganas, South 24-Parganas, Nadia, Hooghly and Kolkata on Wednesday evening. The Regional Meteorological Centre in Alipore predicted that it may rain in the city and adjoining areas, accompanied by storm in the next 24 hours. According to a weather expert, a strong moisture-laden wind which is blowing from the sea, turned the conditions favourable for a storm.last_img read more

Visiting dentist may cut pneumonia risk

first_imgGood oral hygiene can reduce bad bacteria in the mouth and thus decrease the risk of developing pneumonia, a research has found. Pneumonia is an infection that inflames air sacs in one or both lungs, which may fill with fluid.The infection is more common among older people and those with conditions such as AIDS or lung disease. The study found that people who never get dental checkups had an 86 per cent greater risk of pneumonia than those who visit the dentist twice a year. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf“There is a well-documented connection between oral health and pneumonia, and dental visits are important in maintaining good oral health,” said lead author Michelle Doll, Assistant Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in the US.“We can never rid the mouth of bacteria altogether, but good oral hygiene can limit the quantities of bacteria present,” Doll added.The human body contains 10 times as many microbes (bacteria, fungi and viruses) as human cells on or in the body, from the skin to the gastrointestinal system (including the mouth). Some microbes are good and some are bad, but even bad microbes only cause disease under certain circumstances. In some cases, bacteria can be accidentally inhaled or aspirated into the lungs and cause pneumonia. Bacteria that commonly cause pneumonia include streptococcus, haemophilus, staphylococcus, and anaerobic bacteria. Routine dental visits may reduce the amount of bacteria that can be aspirated, Doll said. “Our study provides further evidence that oral health is linked to overall health, and suggests that it’s important to incorporate dental care into routine preventive healthcare,” Doll said.last_img read more

Londonbased TV ratings startup Iptvbeat has raise

first_imgLondon-based TV ratings startup Iptvbeat has raised US$2 million (€1.45 million) in funding and changed its name to TVbeat. UK-based, early-stage venture capital investor, Episode 1, and Czech Republic-based investor Credo Ventures backed the firm.TVbeat founder Robert Farazin said “these funds will allow the company to expand its presence in new markets and further develop its state-of-the-art platform.“He added that the name change reflected TVbeat’s analytical capability across any pay TV platform, including cable, satellite, VOD, OTT and IPTV.TVbeat uses live data from connected set top boxes and other connected devices and has piloted its services to broadcasters, advertisers and pay TV platforms in Slovenia, Croatia and Serbia – with plans to expand further in Europe this year.“We are already measuring over 15 million customer interactions per day, on all digital platforms, regardless of how and where video is consumed. This volume of data can give TV editors, programme directors and marketing teams the kind of precise audience insight they could only have dreamt about in the past,” said Farazin.last_img read more

In This Issue Currencies carry rally throughout

first_imgIn This Issue.*Currencies carry rally throughout Wednesday. *A$ trades though 200-DMA! *Canadian economic data continues to be strong. *Putting the kyboshes on a Swedish rate cut!And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts!Cheap Currencies Don’t Guarantee Strong Exports!Good day. And a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday to you! How was your Wonderful Wednesday? I went to the Cardinals NLCS Game, and after sitting out and waiting 3 ½ hours of a rain delay, (which began in the 7th inning) was rewarded with a 3-1 victory. So, not too shabby. But. a late night for me on a school night for sure. So, I seem to be running late this morning for some reason, but don’t worry, I’ll try to make up the time in the air!Well. the Currencies continued to push the envelope VS the dollar yesterday. The Aussie dollar (A$) was really kicking sand in the face of the U.S. dollar yesterday, gaining over 1 full cent on the day!  So. all those traders that sold their A$ futures in the past two weeks, are piling back in, I bet!  The euro stalled out just above 1.31. But the rest of the “little dogs” were off the porch and chasing the dollar down the street.But that was yesterday, I had the world in my hands, But it’s not the end of my world, just a slight change of plans. Ooops! I don’t know what starts these fat fingers down these lyric roads, but here I am doing it again!  But seriously. That was yesterday. and some of the currencies are still gaining VS the dollar, and some have stalled out. for they need the Big Dog, euro, to run with them, and like I said above, the euro stalled out just above 1.31.The A$ blew right through its 200-day moving avg yesterday, and touched $1.04 this morning. The latest push coming from economic news coming out of China. I told you yesterday, that China’s 3rd QTR GDP was due to print, and print it did! The Chinese economy expanded 7.4% in the 3rd QTR VS a year ago. The consensus was for a 7.4% increase, but I was hoping for a little more as I told you I thought it would be around 7.8%…  (and it was +7.8% “Real GDP, whatever that is!) But that wasn’t all for China.Chinese Industrial Production, and Retail Sales also printed strong numbers for September, thus indicating that China’s economy has turned the corner on its Gov’t generated slowdown. If you’re keeping score at home, Chinese Industrial Production gained 10% in September, and Retail Sales grew at a 14.2% clip. Now that’s strong! And if you only want to believe ½ of what the Chinese report, the 7.1% increase in Retail Sales is still cooking with gas!So. the risk sentiment is strong. except with Gold & Silver. These two have been left behind at the station, and the Love Train carrying the currencies has departed. This improved risk sentiment, is not playing well with the U.S. Treasury yields. The 10-year Treasury’s yield has risen to 1.80%…  (just a couple of weeks ago it was 1.64%)  and remember, when the yield rises in a bond, the bond’s price goes down.  But we’ve seen these moves higher in yields before, and every time, the Fed steps in and squelches any attempt to take yields even higher.  The bond markets used to be able to direct yields. But with the Fed buying as much as they can these days, remember they participated in 61% of the Treasury auctions last year, there’s not much the bond markets can do. Although I would still love to see them try!In Sweden overnight. an article in a Swedish newspaper, really threw cold water on the markets’ thoughts that the next move in rates would be down.  Sweden’s Central Bank, The Riksbank, and the Riksbank Gov. Ingves was in the news. In and interview for the newspaper, Ingves warned that household and corporate indebtedness must be considered when setting rates.  These words were like a dagger in the heart of the rate cut campers, and the Swedish krona rallied!  The Riksbank meets next week, and I would bet a dollar to a Krispy Kreme that the Riksbank would leave rates unchanged at that meeting.  That would be good for the krona. But remember, the krona, the Norwegian krone, and Danish krone, all need the euro to push against the dollar for these to move higher. For now that is. I keep telling you time and time again that one day, the markets will wake up and smell the coffee. the coffee that says these countries fundamentals are not Greece, Portugal, and so on.  But until then, they get tarred with the same brush as the euro.Remember yesterday when I was talking about the Canadian dollar / loonie and saying that the fundamentals there continue to be strong, and that’s why the markets keep the loonie above parity, even though the Canadian Gov’t and Central Bank don’t like it one iota?   Well. more strong data has printed in Canada.  Take Canadian Manufacturing, was rose at a faster than expected clip of 1.5% in August.   And then here’s something that the Canadian Gov’t and Central Bank are going to have to stop and think about. Exports are up in Canada.  Even with the stronger than parity loonie! Look. let me set this straight for Mr. Carney (Bank of Canada Gov.).  if you have items/ stuff, that other countries demand, the price of your currency isn’t the “all-in” of everything that goes into the valuing of the export.  You can ask the Germans about this. Yes, they would love to see the euro around 1.20. But, when you make things of value, and they are in demand throughout the world, you can live with a stronger currency. There’s no need to go jimmying the currency’s value lower so your exports can be more competitive.  this goes out to all the other Central Bankers that are trying this debase your currency so exports are more competitive game. HEY! Make something of value, and you don’t have to jimmy the price of the currency lower!The news out of the Eurozone continues to have a calming effect. But an article in the Financial Times (FT) just might begin to stir things up. The FT reported that “plans to create a single euro area banking supervisor (the European Central Bank / ECB) are illegal. The FT claims that they obtained a secret legal opinion for the European Union Finance Ministers.  I would say that this probably has a lot to do with the stalling out of the euro this morning.I think, as we go along here, that there will many of these seemingly setbacks. But, as long as the Eurozone Leaders keep their heads down, and keep working toward a resolution of their debt problems and bond yield problems, that things on the “other side of all this” will be better.At least they are trying something! And maybe they’ll be wrong, and have to go back to square one, but at least they tried! Here in the U.S. it’s just carry on and keep piling up debt.   I know you all are tired of hearing me harp on about our ever-increasing debt. But, unless someone does something about it, we have to keep this in our sights, so we aren’t standing there holding the bag, when the you know what hits the fan!And with that. my TTWS story today is from our former General Accounting Head, David Walker, who has taken his thoughts across the country, and put them in a book. But, just for you, dear reader, we’ll have David Walker talk to us today. So, let’s go to the Big Finish!Then There Was This. from Moneynews.com.  “The overwhelming majority of Americans feel fiscal reform should take priority this election season, though few expect it to happen, said David Walker, former Comptroller General of the United States and current CEO of the Comeback America Initiative, which promotes fiscal reform and responsibility.Walker recently concluded a “$10 Million a Minute Tour” bus tour, named after the speed at which unfunded promises are climbing, and reached out to Americans in 16 states and the District of Columbia to convey to largely undecided voters issues surrounding fiscal reform in the country.“We found out 97 percent of the people we interacted believe our fiscal challenge is a major challenge and should be a top priority for the presidential candidates as well as other candidates for office, yet only 8 percent have confidence in their ability to work together to get something done in 2013,”“Eighty-five percent believe that it’s going to take a combination of spending reductions and additional revenues to get the job done. We talked about reforms in eight different areas, including social insurance programs, taxes, defense, budget controls, political reforms – the minimum support we got for the reforms was 77 percent.”Chuck again. OK. so more people in the country are realizing that going from $15 Trillion in debt to $16 Trillion in just 10 months is getting out of hand.  But, I have to think that those calling for spending reforms, are not the ones receiving the payouts from the Gov’t.  And then the biggest thing here is the question. “will lawmakers listen to the voters?”  I doubt it. but there’s always a chance, right?To recap. The currency rally continued throughout the day Wednesday, and in the overnight markets, but left some currencies behind, as their respective rallies stalled out. The euro stalled out, probably on a story in the FT about a plan to give the ECB more power is illegal. Canada continues to print strong economic data, in spite of a stronger than parity loonie, and the A$ rallied back to $1.04 overnight, before giving up some of that gain this morning, probably on profit taking.Currencies Today 10/18/12. American Style: A$ $1.0385, kiwi .8210, C$ $1.0220, euro 1.3105, sterling 1.6135, Swiss $1.0840, . European Style: rand 8.6365, krone 5.6210, SEK 6.5365, forint 211.60, zloty 3.1345, koruna 18.8765, RUB 30.75, yen 78.35, sing 1.2175, HKD 7.7505, INR 53.41, China 6.2460, pesos 12.80, BRL 2.0305, Dollar Index 79.14, Oil $92.15, 10-year 1.80%, Silver $33, and Gold. $1,742.85That’s it for today. I was startled this morning, as I arrived at the office, I turned on the lights, and voice said, “Good morning, Chuck” Whoa! I’m always here by myself in the morning! But one of our Wealth Mgt. gurus, Joseph, was here working, and startled the heck out of me! Whoa! My heart can’t handle that stuff! HA!  So, our Big hitter, goes out of the game in the first inning, and the guy that replaces him hits the game winning 2-run home run! He crushed it! Talk about a good replacement! The Cardinals rarely beat S.F’s Matt Cain, so that was a good game. My dad told me years ago, that in these series, the odd games are the most important. and we have won both odd games so far.  Well, I made up the time in the air, and got you to your destination on time, but, now we have to wait for a gate to open up! HA!  I hope you have a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday. I need to go back to sleep!Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 www.everbank.comlast_img read more

The easiest way to turn your kids into geniuses b

first_imgThe easiest way to turn your kids into geniuses, by the time they’re seven, is just to front-load huge amounts of experience, including dangerous experience. Like Gatto, I believe that the real dangers for your children lie in government schools, and even in private schools that function on the same model. Here’s what Gatto says on the subject: Growth and mastery come only to those who vigorously self-direct. Initiating, creating, doing, reflecting, freely associating, enjoying privacy—these are precisely what the structures of schooling are set up to prevent, on one pretext or another. Yes, I understand that people are pushed, economically, to put their children into public schools. If you feel like you’re in that position, make sure that you tell your children how the system is set up to condition them. Teach them that understanding is far more important than memorizing. Back them up if the teachers give them grief. Let people talk about you. Your children should understand, very clearly, that teachers and principals are just average people doing particular jobs; that they are merely another neighbor to the people on their street. Some of them are good people, others are bad people, and a title is just a title – it means nothing more. Teach your children to be bold, let them learn how to fall and rise again. Of course you want to let them encounter dangers slowly, and you’d never put them in positions to get truly hurt, but you should be nothing like the über-parents who surveil their children’s every move, in terror that poor little Johnny will encounter something that hasn’t been sanitized for his protection. I’ll leave you with one last quote from John Taylor Gatto: something that applies both to schooling and the larger world: After a long life, and thirty years in the public school trenches, I’ve concluded that genius is as common as dirt. We suppress our genius only because we haven’t yet figured out how to manage a population of educated men and women. The solution, I think, is simple and glorious. Let them manage themselves. Resist the fear, my friends. Paul Rosenberg FreemansPerspective.com One of the worst things that has been done to children over the past generation or two has been insulating them from anything that could possibly have any danger attached. Parents keeping their children under permanent watch has become “what people do.” And it’s a BIG mistake. I know why the parents have done this, of course – we live in a fear-based culture, and it has rubbed off on them. But the reason they have caved in to fear is not important – what matters is that they have harmed their children. Children – at some point in their upbringing – need to confront danger; they need to explore; they need adventures. At one time, parents knew this. It wasn’t too many years ago when parents let their kids go off into the woods by themselves, with rifles. If that was really so horribly dangerous, half of us wouldn’t be here. Is it scary to watch your children walk into a subway station? Or out into the woods? You bet it is! But you have to do it anyway. Calculate the risks, pick your times, pick your spots, watch them from a distance if you must, but let them go out and face the world. Remember, fear is merely an impulse, and it can be based on lies, distortions, or even on nothing at all. It’s a crazy thing on which to base your children’s lives. A new German study shows clearly that adventure shapes the individual. As one of the researchers concluded, “Living our lives makes us who we are.” Your children need to live, and not merely exist inside of a fear-inspired bubble. The study also indicates that exploration and adventure not only affect personality development, but also brain growth. I’m not alone in this opinion, of course. Here are two quotes from John Taylor Gatto, a home school advocate and one of the finest teachers of modern times (one of the most awarded too, ironically enough): Sensible children do not wish to be incomplete human beings. And so, when you impose a stage theory of human development upon them, you are, in effect, tormenting them; you’re limiting their opportunity… Don’t be your kid’s enemy, because that’s not a kid, that’s your fellow human being. Be a partner, and enlarge their opportunities.last_img read more

When Angela Huntington arrived at work on a Wednes

first_imgWhen Angela Huntington arrived at work on a Wednesday morning in early October, she had to do something she dreaded: turn patients away.Huntington is the manager at the Columbia Health Center in Columbia, Mo., a Planned Parenthood site that recently had to halt its abortion services in the midst of a highly publicized legal fight in the state. Since another Missouri law requires a 72-hour waiting period between counseling about abortion and having the actual procedure, Huntington needed to call every patient on the day’s schedule. She told them they could come to her clinic for the counseling but would have to go elsewhere for the abortion.The only other place in the state that they could turn to for an abortion was in St. Louis, a two-hour-drive away.Many patients didn’t pick up the phone. When they arrived, Huntington says, some were in tears after learning they had driven hours to Columbia to find that the clinic would no longer be able to perform the procedure. “They’re already in a tough spot, and then you go and have to tell them this information. It’s just heartbreaking,” Huntington says. “This is their health. This is their well-being. It’s an emotional thing for them.”The battle over abortion rights in Missouri has drawn national attention in recent weeks, after a federal court ruled that two state laws limiting abortion access should stand. One law requires abortion providers to obtain privileges to admit patients to nearby hospitals. The other requires clinics to meet criteria that designate them as outpatient surgical centers. Together, these rules have forced all but one Planned Parenthood health center in the state — the one in St. Louis — to stop offering both medical and surgical abortions, according to Emily Miller, a spokesperson for the organization. And, abortion-rights supporters in Missouri say, their state is an example of the kind of “abortion desert” that could become more widespread if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.”Columbia is a microcosm of what is happening [nationwide],” says Kristin Metcalf-Wilson, the lead clinician for Planned Parenthood Great Plains, a group of clinics that includes the Columbia facility. Similar laws — which abortion-rights advocates call “targeted regulation of abortion providers,” or TRAP laws — are in place in 24 states. If Roe is overturned, Metcalf-Wilson says, they are likely to proliferate, since Roe is the legal precedent that many judges turn to when invalidating the TRAP laws. For instance, a 2016 Supreme Court decision overturned a TRAP law in Texas on the basis of the rights established in Roe. “People don’t just create their own legislative ideas,” Metcalf-Wilson says. “If we allow this to happen in Missouri, it will happen other places.”And that means continued legal battles and on-the-ground activism for advocates on both sides of the abortion debate. Emily Wales, the general counsel at Planned Parenthood Great Plains, says her team has ongoing litigation against the federal court’s ruling in addition to several other laws that make it harder for Planned Parenthood to provide abortions in the state — and is awaiting the court’s response. Wales says neither the admitting privileges requirement nor the ambulatory surgical center requirements are necessary, since abortion is widely considered a safe procedure. “Providing abortion care in Missouri really is complex and it involves so many different restrictions,” Wales says. “The science remains the same no matter what the restrictions are, and the need for care also remains the same no matter what the restrictions are.”Abortion-rights opponents say the rules help ensure patients have an adequate safety net in place in the case of an emergency. The state’s attorney general’s office said in a written statement it plans to “continue to vigorously defend Missouri’s commonsense regulations that protect women’s health and safety.” Anti-abortion-rights leaders in Columbia are feeling galvanized by the latest legal ruling, after working for years for this outcome, but they also say their work in the city isn’t done. “As long as Planned Parenthood is open in Columbia, we’ll still be there offering our services,” says Kathy Forck, a director of the Columbia chapter of the 40 Days for Life campaign. “We started praying there, and we were starting to see that we were helping women to choose life.”Forck and her fellow activists have been holding daily prayer vigils on the sidewalk in front of the clinic. She says her group suggests to people walking into Planned Parenthood that they instead go across the street to the My Life Clinic, a prenatal clinic affiliated with the anti-abortion-rights Life Network of Central Missouri. The My Life Clinic did not respond to requests for comment. Grassroots organizing is central to the anti-abortion-rights cause, Forck says. She says sympathetic people often approach her when she is wearing shirts or pins around Columbia supporting her cause. And she maintains a local email list with 12,000 names on it. During the 40 Days for Life protests, Forck says, “people go by and give us thumbs up, they honk, they give us hot chocolate if it’s cold.” Planned Parenthood of Great Plains Votes — a political organization affiliated with the Columbia clinic — is also focusing on local activism. Cortney Bouse, a community organizer there, says she is working with University of Missouri students in Columbia to speak out about contraception issues on campus. “Our role is not to tell them what to do but to help and harness their energy,” Bouse says, explaining that their focus is “to try and engage more Planned Parenthood patients and younger people.” Bouse says right now, she is working on getting supporters to the polls for the November midterm election. Her team in Columbia is working on what she calls a “relational voter program,” where activists encourage their friends and family to vote. “We’re in full election mode,” she says.As grassroots and legal battles continue, the clinic in Columbia remains open for primary care and family planning. Huntington, the clinic manager, says her staffers felt frustrated when they had to stop offering abortions, but they see this latest setback as nothing new. The clinic has been the subject of several years of legal battles, protests and counterprotests. “We’re warriors together,” Huntington says. “We’re here to fight the fight and keep these doors open.”Mara Gordon is a family physician in Washington, D.C., and a health and media fellow at NPR and Georgetown University School of Medicine. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more