first_imgWASHINGTON – Most American families grew richer between 2013 and 2016, but the wealthiest households pulled even further ahead, worsening the nation’s massive disparities in wealth and income.The median net worth of all American families rose 16 per cent last year from 2013 to $97,300, according to a Federal Reserve survey released Wednesday. The median is the point where half of families fall below and half above. That’s the first gain for middle class households since the recession upended the economy nearly a decade ago.The figures echo data released earlier this month from the Census Bureau, which also showed middle-class incomes rising. Since 2015, the economic recovery’s benefits have been spread broadly, to nearly all income levels and racial and ethnic groups. But those gains arrived after the first five years of the recovery, when higher-earning households reaped most of the benefits. A low and falling unemployment rate has helped push up pay, while rising home prices have restored some wealth to middle income families.Even with the improvement, the Fed’s report, known as the Survey of Consumer Finances , starkly illustrates the depth of the nation’s wealth and income gaps. The disparities exist along lines of income, race and ethnicity, and between cities and rural dwellers.“You’re seeing a continuing pulling apart in the wealth and income data,” said Elise Gould, senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute.It also points to why so many Americans remain frustrated with the economy: On many measures, most families still haven’t fully recovered from the 2008-2009 downturn. In fact, the median measures for wealth and income still trail their 2001 levels.Lael Brainard, a Fed policymaker, raised concerns in a speech Tuesday that long-running inequalities may hobble U.S. economic growth. Greater concentrations of wealth and income could slow consumer spending, which accounts for about two-thirds of economic activity, because richer households typically save a larger proportion of a pay raise or other income gain than middle- and lower-income ones do.The Fed’s survey found that even as median net worth climbed 16 per cent, average net worth rose more quickly, by 26 per cent to $692,100. Those differences between the median and average figures mostly reflect stronger gains at the top of the income scale. Net worth includes the value of housing, stocks, mutual funds and other savings minus mortgages and other debts.Black and Hispanic families reported large wealth gains, but wealth gaps along racial lines barely narrowed. Median wealth for an African-American family was $17,600 last year, up 29 per cent from 2013. That’s a much bigger gain than the 17 per cent increase for whites.Yet median wealth for white families last year was $171,000, ten times that for blacks and roughly eight times that for Latinos.Median wealth for the richest 10 per cent of all families jumped 40 per cent in the past three years to $1.63 million.The 1 per cent richest families now hold nearly 39 per cent of U.S. wealth, up from 36.3 per cent in 2013, the Fed said. The bottom 90 per cent of families now own just 22.8 per cent of the nation’s wealth, down from 33.2 per cent in 1989.Similar patterns appear in the report’s section on incomes. Latino families reported a 15 per cent gain in median income to $38,500, while median income for African-Americans rose 10 per cent to $35,400. Median incomes for whites rose only 6 per cent, but were still much higher at $61,200.One reason more families are finally regaining some wealth is that home prices have risen steadily since 2012. Average housing wealth — the value of a home, minus mortgages and other debt — rose 20 per cent last year from 2016. That followed a slight drop in home values in the previous three years.Meanwhile, for those Americans who own stocks, the average value of their portfolios increased 23.4 per cent from 2013 to 2016. That followed an 18.2 per cent increase in the preceding three years, when average home values were falling.For the 10 per cent richest Americans, the average value of their stock holdings jumped nearly 37 per cent to $1.37 million.The Fed also broke down their measures by where families live. For families living in cities, median income increased 10 per cent, while those outside cities saw an increase of just 2 per cent.___Follow Chris Rugaber on Twitter at http://Twitter.com/ChrisRugaberlast_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Concluding a long run of 88 years, Mitra Cinema of Hati Bagan in North Kolkata downed its shutters after the owners failed to bear the huge loss incurred while running it.With the closure of the single-screen hall, several memories associated with Barua-Kanan Devi, Chabi Biswas-Sandhyarani or Uttam Suchitra come to an end. The last show at the hall was screened on April 1. Dipendra Mitra, the proprietor of the hall, said he was unable to run the place because of his ill health. The century-old building is in need of immediate repair and firefighting and other modern equipments need to be installed as well. A rumour is making rounds that a high-rise building will come up at the prime location. However, Mitra refused to divulge anything regarding the same. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaMitra Cinema was opened in 1963 and has been screening Bengali and Hindi movies since then. Rajatava Mitra remembers when as a college student he saw Deya Neya, a legendary Uttam Kumar starrer which also featured Tanuja, Chaya Devi, Kamal Mitra, Pahari Sanyal and Tarun Kumar, at Mitra Cinema in 1963. “We had to stand in a long queue to get a ticket for the opening show. It was a marvelous experience,” he said. In the past few years, several cinema halls that used to screen Bengali movies have downed their shutters. Purna, Bharati and Ujjala, three famous cinema halls in South Kolkata, have closed down. Alochaya, a cinema hall in Beliaghata has been pulled down to make room for a high-rise complex. In Central Kolkata, Elite, Roxy and Chaplin have been closed, while Metro Cinema has been converted into a shopping mall.last_img read more

first_imgPutrajaya: Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday defended Singapore’s proposed law to fight “online falsehoods,” but his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad warned that anti-fake news laws were a double-edged sword that could be abused by governments to stay in power. The two leaders were speaking after annual talks Tuesday aimed at resolving disputes over maritime boundaries, airspace management and the price of water that had strained ties since Mahathir’s alliance swept to power in elections last May. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USLee said many countries including France, Germany and Australia have legislation to combat fake news. Singapore took nearly two years to deliberate on the issue before the government unveiled a bill in parliament last week to combat fake news, he said. The law allows the government to remove online content it deems as false and includes a jail term of up to 10 years and hefty fines. “This is the problem of fake news and deliberate false statement being proliferated online. It is a serious problem which confronts many countries,” Lee said at a joint news conference. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls”Singapore is not the only one which has taken legislation on this issue. The French has done so, the Germans have done so. The Australians have just done so, something similar and very draconian. The British are also thinking of doing this as well. So Singapore had to do this and we had a long process… finally we have this bill and it will be debated in the house and I hope eventually it will become legislation,” he said. Lee rejected criticisms from rights groups such as Reporters Without Borders which had voiced fear the law could further stifle free speech in Singapore, which already has stern laws on public protests and dissent. “They criticized many things about Singapore’s media management but what we have done have worked for Singapore. And it is our objective to continue to do things that will work for Singapore. And I think (the new law) will be a significant step forward in this regard,” he added. Mahathir, however, said his government will repeal Malaysia’s law against fake news as it promised. An earlier effort to do so was blocked by the opposition-led Senate but the government is expected to push it through again. “For us, we need to learn how to handle such fake news. When we have laws that prevent people from airing their views, then we are afraid the government may abuse the law as it has happened in the last government,” Mahathir said. “We do not want any government, whether this or succeeding governments, to make use of this law in order to tell and create fake news in order to sustain themselves. Of course it will be difficult to handle, but we believe we can accept the challenges and we can handle that.”last_img read more

first_imgWhen we think about organising precarious “gig” workers, the task seems biblical. Low pay and no benefits that accrue to gig workers are worsened by the uncertainty of a position where you can only work to deliver something specifically demanded by consumers and at a premium you are often powerless to control. App companies misclassify workers as independent contractors rather than employees in order to pass on all of the maintenance and capital costs, aside from web work and marketing, to the workers, avoiding personnel benefit and equipment costs that are routine for regular employers. Conditions seem to cry out a union. A recent “strike” by Uber drivers in Los Angeles illustrates the kind of problem we deal with when we discuss gig workers and their ability to fight for better conditions. The company had triggered the strike by increasing its percentage of the fare, thereby decreasing drivers’ pay. In response, the drivers turned off the Uber application on their phone. Stated more plainly, they went on strike by simply not responding to any calls or inducements to drive. Did it work? Who knows? How would any of us, whether organisers, curious observers, or company officials, know how to measure the number of drivers protesting in this way versus those who just decided not to drive on any given day or got ticked-off and responded to Lyft instead? ACORN tried a similar approach in the early 1970s when we were fighting increases by the Arkla Gas Company in central Arkansas. Our “Turn Off Arkla Day!” action got a bit of press, as the Uber drivers did in Los Angeles. But in both cases, the company yawned since there was no way to measure whether the strike affected their cash flow. Organising gig workers can be challenging, but there’s some good work going on for bicycle delivery drivers in Europe, where companies like Uber Eats, Deliveroo, and others have become ubiquitous. Last fall, one of ACORN’s affiliates organised a meeting in Brussels that brought together union activists interested in organising European bicycle delivery drivers with fledgeling groups of drivers from a dozen countries including the UK, the Netherlands, and Germany. That meeting highlighted several active organising projects: – Bike Workers Advocacy Project (BWAP), a new group seeking to organise cycling workers and, eventually, lead to some kind of unionisation or union-style representation. Drivers at Postmates and Caviar in New York City and some bicycle shops seemed to be stirring the pot in 2018, but nothing seems to have emerged formally to date. – Bike delivery workers at Foodora and Dilveroo in Germany have raised issues about low wages and their independent contractor situation while advocating for a union. – In 2016, London gig workers for delivery services Deliveroo and Uber Eats organised protests and strikes for higher wages. There was also an outcry in Philadelphia when a rider for Caviar was killed while working. – Legal action has managed to win back employment rights, such as a recent ruling in Spain that declared that a Deliveroo rider was, in fact, an employee and not an independent contractor, as the company claimed. Caviar is in mandatory arbitration in California on the same issue. Just as importantly, riders in London struck for three days in 2018 and joined with striking McDonalds’s workers to demand higher wages, largely organised by a chapter of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). While these examples seem promising, unions clearly lack any real commitment to organise these workers, and the workers have limited leverage. David Chu, who directs the European Organising Center, a joint project between European unions and the US-based Change to Win federation, told me recently that he hears a lot of talk about organising gig workers but sees little action in that direction. Serious organising efforts in the United States have been contradictory and are embryonic at best. Uber in New York City and San Francisco reacted to organising efforts by attempting to co-opt the organisations into agreeing that the workers were not employees in exchange for consultation rights on rule changes and other issues like receiving tips. More concerted efforts to create a mini-National Labor Relations Board representation mechanism were launched at the municipal level in Seattle, but the organising effort is currently mired in litigation over pre-emption by the National Labor Relations Act and the question of employee status. Local efforts reflect the way companies keep changing their practices, as Marielle Benchehboune, coordinator of ACORN’s affiliate, ReAct, noted recently in Forbes. “What will make the difference,” she suggested, is workers organising “on the transnational scale.” Perhaps her analysis is correct. Perhaps a rare global organising plan could create enough pressure and leverage among these competing companies that could weld a workers’ movement together from the disparate pieces of independent worker mobilisations that are cropping up around the world. Given the challenges, how much should we invest in organising gig workers? Labour economists in the US caution that despite all of the hype from Silicon Valley and even some labour officials about the emerging gig economy, it involves a very small percentage of the workforce. I heard something similar 15 years ago when I asked a leader of the Indian National Trade Union Congress if they were doing anything to organise call centre workers in India. He answered that they estimated that there were 30,000 such workers, but there were 450 million workers in India at the time and hardly nine per cent were organised. He then shrugged. That’s all he said, but we got the message. There’s much to be done in organising the unorganised; resources and capacity are always restrained, whether in India, Europe or North America. Is that a reason for not finding ways to organise workers who are attempting on their own to find justice in their jobs? Or is it just another rationale for doing little or nothing? The one thing that seems clear is that if unions are going to be relevant to the modern workforce and the irregular and precarious forms of work that are being created by technology married to avarice, we must debate and address these challenges. It may be difficult, but unions and organisers need to devise practical strategies that allow workers to organise, win, and build enough power to force companies to adapt and change. IPA (Courtesy: People’s World The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

See more NFL predictions See more college football predictions College Football All newsletters Oh, and don’t forgetWes, you ham We’re launching a sports newsletter. 🏆  Join the squad. Subscribe See more NBA predictions Things That Caught My EyeFive years is kind of a hard capMarvin Lewis was head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals for 15 years and never managed to win a Super Bowl. Reality is, coach-quarterback combos that work tend to be the ones that click early. Every coach/starting quarterback combination who won a Super Bowl did so within their first five seasons of working together. [FiveThirtyEight]Yeah I had a nasty case of the “Vegas Flu” once and learned I probably shouldn’t play roulette anymoreThe Las Vegas Golden Knights are doing really well, and here’s one theory as to why their opponents appear off their game: They play hockey in Las Vegas, a fun place with booze and gambling and late nights on the town before hockey games. “Hockey flus” have historically spread in certain cities, be they “Roxy Flu” in Vancouver thanks to the Roxy club, or “Philadelphia Flu” because the team was a bit punchier than a typical squad. Vegas has played seven teams this season that as of Tuesday appear playoff bound, and all those good teams lost in Vegas. House always wins. [ESPN]Fiesta Bowl pivots to OverwatchThere’s a groundswell of colleges and universities fielding competitive esports teams, and Thursday the Fiesta Bowl organization announced they’ll be partnering up with Blizzard Entertainment, the company behind Overwatch, to put on the Fiesta Bowl Overwatch Collegiate National Championships in February. It’s the first time a collegiate bowl organization and a games publisher have collaborated, and comes just as the Overwatch League, a competitive league with the backing of several NFL owners, is about to kick off. [ESPN]40 bowls, each slightly betterThis year there are 40 collegiate football bowls, the first season of bowl contraction since 1995, thanks to the Poinsettia Bowl folding. Yes, this year has what an analysis of Elo scores indicates is the worst bowl matchup in the past 30 years, Georgia State vs. Western Kentucky. But overall, quality is up based on the average matchup Elo score compare to last year, which had some rough bowls. [FiveThirtyEight]Try out our fun new interactive, Which World Cup Team Should You Root For?Slash & burnScoring is up in the NHL this season, but it’s not the fault of the goalies. A number of rule changes — including higher enforcement of slashing penalties — means an average of 3.3 power plays per game, which kickstarts scoring opportunities and plausibly scoring. [FiveThirtyEight]Figure skating in DetroitA program spun off from Figure Skating in Harlem offers ice skates, uniforms, coaching and instruction to girls who commit to practicing two hours a day four days a week and maintaining a B average or higher in the city of Detroit. For a sport that can cost into the tens of thousands for high-level instruction, the program — which seeks to recruit 300 girls by year end 2018 — is trying to be an on-ramp for those who aren’t born into affluence. [The Undefeated]Make sure to try your hand at our fun NFL can you beat the FiveThirtyEight predictions? game!Big Number0.69 first downs per target with GronkRob Gronkowski gives the Patriots offense a massive kickstart. When Gronkowski is off the field, the team this season notched 72 receptions, 771 yards, 100 targets and 0.32 first downs per target. When Gronk was on the field — even if he’s not the one getting the ball, just if he’s there and needing to be covered — the team notched 277 receptions, 3,429 yards, 400 targets and 0.69 first downs per target. [FiveThirtyEight]Leaks from Slack: kyle:College basketball rankings: OU’s Trae Young has stats better than Steph Curry’scbs going hardneil::fire: :fire: :fire: :fire:In fairness, these numbers are pretty insanePredictions NFL NBA read more

First baseman and pitcher Josh Dezse was named Big Ten freshman of the year for Ohio State baseball (25-25, 13-11 Big Ten) Tuesday. Four other Buckeyes also earned Big Ten honors. Dezse led OSU with a .341 batting average and 42 RBIs and also went 4-1 on the mound with a team-high five saves. He is the 10th Buckeye to win Big Ten freshman of the year. Dezse was also named to the All-Big Ten second-team with senior pitcher Drew Rucinski, who led the team as a starter with a 5-3 record and was third in the Big Ten with a 2.88 ERA. It was Rucinski’s first conference honor outside of academics. Dezse, center fielder Tim Wetzel and pitcher Greg Greve made the All-Big Ten freshman team. Wetzel hit .274 and scored 31 runs while Greve finished the year 3-2 with a 4.74 ERA. Rounding out the awards was senior reliever Theron Minium, who was named one of 10 sportsmanship award honorees. OSU will begin the Big Ten Tournament as the No. 4 seed when they play No. 5 Minnesota at 12:05 today at Huntington Park in Columbus. read more

first_imgWayne Rooney has revealed his final days at Manchester United were embarrassing.The Manchester United all-time top scorer insists his failure to start the club’s league cup final against Southampton and the UEFA Europa League final against Ajax convinced him his time at the club was over.Despite having a bit-part role in manager Jose Mourinho’s squad, the former England international remained the captain as well as a living icon during his final season at Old Trafford.However, his reduced status in the dressing room meant Rooney was ’embarrassed’ to lift both trophies.Rooney told Sky Sports: “I came on for one minute in the Europa League final. I was about to come on against Southampton in the League Cup final, and in those moments it was embarrassing.“It was getting to a point where I was embarrassed. I thought “I can’t keep doing this”, as hard as it was to leave United.”Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedLiverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.“In the Southampton game, [manager Jose] Mourinho came to me and said: ‘I want you to lift the trophy.’ I was like: “Well, I didn’t even play in the game.’”“He was persistent with it, and I literally lifted it and moved it on. What was I doing? I need to move on and go somewhere else.”Rooney called time on his United career in the summer of 2017, joining his boyhood club Everton with Romelu Lukaku moving in the other direction in a separate deal.However, his time at Goodison Park would be equally difficult and he made the move to the MLS this summer.He enjoyed an impressive campaign in the United States and his family have flourished in their new environment.last_img read more

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppBahamas, April 13, 2017 – Nassau – The Ministry of Education yesterday announced that three national examinations have been rescheduled due to their clash with the May 10 date for the 2017 general elections.  The Bahamas General Certificate of Secondary Education (BGCSE) subject papers for Graphical Communication and Music will now be held on June 7, and the Grade Level Assessment Test (GLAT) has been rescheduled to May 15 to May 19.A notice was sent out yesterday to principals and examination supervisors at government and private schools yesterday, and apologised for any inconvenience caused by the date change.  The Graphical Communication Paper 2 will start at 9am, and the Music paper is slated for 1pm on Wednesday, June 7.  The GLAT exam will begin on May 15, and testing will end on May 18 for Grade 3 students, and on May 19 for Grade 6 students.Yesterday, Education director Lionel Sands noted that schools across the country are making good progress on recovering time lost during school closures in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew last October.  Mr Sands said: “We’ve done quite a bit to catch up on days lost as a consequence of extra time teachers have been putting in. We’ve not fully caught up but we are catching up, so by the end of the school year we would have caught up.  He continued: “I certainly wish to express my deep gratitude to the teachers who have been so good at helping us recovering days we lost as a consequence of the storm, giving up time during lunch break, after school, some even on weekends.”Story by: Sheri-kae McLeod#MagneticMediaNews#examsrescheduled#BahamasGeneralElections Long lines for Registration, Department ready for influx Constitutional requirement on General Elections explained Bahamas House of Assembly reconvenes, Election Date to be announced Related Items:#BahamasGeneralElections, #examsrescheduled, #magneticmedianews Recommended for youlast_img read more

first_imgAt least five people were killed and 20 injured in two separate road crashes in Noakhali and Chandpur districts on Wednesday.In Noakhali, three people were killed and 20 others injured as a bus plunged into a roadside ditch in Chatkhil upazila of the district on Wednesday morning.Identities of the deceased could not be known immediately.Asked about the matter, Chatkhil police station’s inspector Saiful Islam told Prothom Alo that identities of the victims could not be known as yet.A rescue operation is going on, he added.Witnesses said three people were killed on the spot after a Ramganj-bound bus of Janani Paribahan fell into a roadside ditch around 9:00 this morning.The injured were admitted to a local hospital.In Chandpur, two more people were killed in a collision between a bus and a CNG-run auto rickshaw in Bagra area of Chandpur.The deceased are Mozzammel, 25, only passenger of the auto-rickshaw and the driver, according to the police.Faridganj upazila officer-in-charge Nasim said confirmed this to Prothom Alo and said bodies were sent to hospital morgue.last_img read more

first_imgMichael Stravato for The Texas TribuneEvacuees flee flooding in a boat with a nearly submerged Houston sign behind them, on Aug, 29, 2017.The Trump administration is finalizing a $29 billion disaster aid package that combines $16 billion to shore up the government-backed flood insurance program with almost $13 billion in new relief for hurricane victims, according to a senior administration official and top congressional aides.The huge request is expected to be officially sent to Congress on Wednesday, but its outlines were characterized by officials who demanded anonymity because the $29 billion measure is not yet public.The request would address two pressing needs. The first is to pump money into the flood insurance program, which is rapidly running out of cash to pay an influx of claims from victims of hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. At the same time, the Federal Emergency Management Agency continues to spend money for disaster relief operations at a high rate and requires more money.The government-guaranteed flood insurance program is maxing out on a $30 billion line of credit from Treasury; the upcoming proposal would wipe $16 billion of that debt off the books to permit the program to pay claims from hurricane victims.Almost $13 billion is being requested for FEMA, and federal firefighting accounts would receive $577 million as well to replenish them after a disastrous season of Western wildfires.“This is going to be extraordinarily expensive and I think we need to get some money out there,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J.House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said he had met with lawmakers from Texas and Florida on Tuesday to brief them on the White House request.“Remember, this is emergency money. You’ve got to deal with the problem,” McCarthy told reporters. “So I think we’ll be able to get this done.”The request could prove controversial, especially the huge infusion into the flood insurance program. Conservatives are likely to liken it to a taxpayer bailout, but the program is enormously important to homeowners in hurricane-ravaged Texas and Florida, as well as other coastal states.Congress is in the midst of an effort to reauthorize the troubled flood insurance program, which critics say makes taxpayers subsidize properties that have repeatedly flooded. A bipartisan effort to reform the program was enacted in 2012 but was significantly watered down just two years later after widespread complaints of huge premium increases and resulting disruptions in coastal real estate markets.Congress last month approved a $15.3 billion aid package that nearly doubled President Donald Trump’s request. Senate Republicans added $7.4 billion in community development block grant rebuilding funds to Trump’s request for immediate cleanup, repair and housing costs.Later this year, the White House is expected to require tens of billions of dollars more in long-term funds that would rebuild infrastructure, help people without insurance restore their homes, and, perhaps, help Puerto Rico reconstitute its shattered electrical grid.Trump surveyed Hurricane damage in Puerto Rico on Tuesday. He praised his administration’s response, even as lawmakers returning from the island say the president is painting far too rosy a picture.“What you’re seeing is a mirage,” Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., said of conditions in San Juan, where Trump visited and where many reporters are located. Many mountain towns are cut off, with sick and elderly people trapped. “I saw the video on TV and everybody’s friendly and everybody’s smiling. You know what? It gave the wrong impression of what’s going on in the island.” Sharelast_img read more

first_imgAriana Cubillos/APVenezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro and his wife Cilia Flores wave to supporters at the presidential palace in Caracas on Sunday after election officials declared his victoryVenezuela’s leftist President Nicholas Maduro has easily won a second term, but his main rivals have refused to accept the results, calling the polling fraudulent — a view shared by the United States and many independent observers.Venezuela’s National Election Council, run by Maduro loyalists, said that with nearly 93 percent of polling stations reporting by Sunday, Maduro had won almost 68 percent of the vote, beating his nearest challenger, Henri Falcon, by almost 40 points.“They underestimated me,” said a triumphant Maduro to cheers from his supporters as fireworks sounded and confetti fell at the presidential palace in Caracas.Maduro, 55, replaced Hugo Chavez when the longtime Venezuelan socialist died of cancer in 2013. Since then, Maduro has presided over a collapsing economy, hyperinflation, widespread hunger and a mass of refugees trying to escape the desperate conditions. The country has been further hit by falling oil exports and U.S. imposed sanctions.Fewer than half of registered voters turned up at the polls, but the opposition, which has boycotted the election, said even that figure was inflated.Those opposed to Maduro have long maintained that the election is fraudulent, not least because the opposition’s most popular leaders — the ones with the best chance of unseating the president — were barred from running.As NPR’s Philip Reeves reports from Caracas, “Throughout the day voting stations appeared almost empty around the capital.” Despite that, election officials claim turnout of nearly 50 percent.“The process undoubtedly lacks legitimacy and as such we do not recognize it,” said Falcon, a 56-year-old former state governor.According to The Associated Press, “Falcon was joined in his call for a new election by third-place finisher Javier Bertucci, who got around 11 percent of the vote. Bertucci, a TV evangelist, stopped short of challenging the results, saying what he called a mistaken opposition boycott also boosted Maduro.”Reuters writes:“Falcon, a former member of the Socialist Party who went over to the opposition in 2010, said he was outraged at the government’s placing of nearly 13,000 pro-government stands called “red spots” close to polling stations nationwide.Mainly poor Venezuelans were asked to scan state-issued “fatherland cards” at red tents after voting in hope of receiving a “prize” promised by Maduro, which opponents said was akin to vote-buying.The “fatherland cards” are required to receive benefits including food boxes and money transfers.”In the run-up to the election, Freedom House issued a statement calling it “clearly unconstitutional” and called Maduro a “dictator” who has crushed all opposition.As voting took place on Sunday, a senior State Department official warned that the U.S. might press ahead on threats of imposing crippling oil sanctions, according to the AP.Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Sharelast_img read more

first_imgStory Links For the latest information on Louisville lacrosse, visit GoCards.com, or follow the team’s Twitter account at @LouisvilleLax or on Facebook at facebook.com/UofLLacrosse. Print Friendly Version Eleven players were named to the Dean’s List for Fall 2018, earning above a 3.5 GPA, while four were named Dean’s Scholars for a perfect 4.0 GPA.Hope Herline and Molly Marshall also graduated this semester.The Cardinals open the 2019 season at Northwestern on Friday, Feb. 8. After three road contests to start the year, they host Mercer on Sunday, Feb. 24. “I am extremely proud of our team for their efforts in the classroom,” said head coach Scott Teeter. “Prior to the semester, we set a goal for our team to achieve a 3.5 grade-point average and we are thrilled to accomplish that feat.”In addition, 26 student-athletes earned a 3.0 or better GPA, while 21 earned Red & Black Scholar Athlete status for a 3.25 or better cumulative GPA. LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The University of Louisville lacrosse team completed a successful fall semester in the classroom, posting a 3.536 team grade-point average.last_img read more

first_imgMost computers today store memory electronically, by maintaining a certain voltage. In contrast, a new kind of memory that stores data thermally, by maintaining temperature, is being investigated by researchers Lei Wang of the National University of Singapore and the Renmin University of China, and Baowen Li of the National University of Singapore and the NUS Graduate School for Integrative Sciences and Engineering. Citation: Scientists Propose Thermal Memory to Store Data (2009, January 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-01-scientists-thermal-memory.html Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img In recent years, thermal research has improved scientists’ understanding of heat conduction on a molecular level. Scientists have created theoretical models of some thermal devices, including a thermal transistor and logic gate, both by Wang and Li in 2006 and 2007, respectively. This kind of work has opened the doors to the new subject of “phononics” – the science and engineering of processing information with heat. In the current study, Wang and Li take the field of phononics one step further and show the feasibility of a thermal memory that can store data with heat. The scientists predict that such a heat memory could be experimentally realized in the foreseeable future with rapidly advancing nanotechnology. Their work is published in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.As Wang and Li explain, any thermally insulated system might be a candidate for thermal memory since it maintains its temperature (data) for a long time. Still, any system will face the challenge of unavoidable perturbation when the temperature is measured (when the data is read). Due to energy exchange between the thermometer and the system, the system won’t be able to naturally recover its original temperature after the data reading. To solve this problem, the researchers suggest using a thermal circuit capable of producing two steady states, which is connected to a power supply from an external heat bath.Wang and Li’s thermal memory consists of a single particle sandwiched between two lattice segments, each consisting of about 50 atoms. These left and right segments are connected to heat baths at different fixed temperatures, and the central particle is connected to a control heat bath that can be set to “on” or “off.” The particle’s chosen state can remain unchanged for a long time even after the heat bath is removed. The particle and the segments are also weakly coupled together by harmonic springs. This memory system, the researchers explain, can perform a complete write-read process. The “writer” is made of a lattice of about 10 particles, connected to the central particle by a linear spring. The other end of the writer is connected to a heat bath. Depending on the supply from the heat bath, the writer can either cool the particle to the off state or heat it to the on state. To read the data, a thermometer (made of the same lattice as the writer) is connected to the central particle. Unlike the writer, the reader is not connected to a heat bath, but is set to a temperature between the on and off states. If the particle is in the on (hot) state, the reader will heat up; if the particle is off (cool), the reader cools down. Of course, the particle’s temperature will also change when exposed to the medium-temperature reader. But the heat baths connected to the left and right segments will either absorb the particle’s excess heat or warm the particle, so that the particle recovers its original temperature (and state) in either case.The researchers calculated that, when the writer is removed, the system can maintain its state for a relatively long time, although an ideal thermal memory is impossible due to thermal fluctuations. However, by refreshing the data (similar to how voltage data is regularly refreshed in dynamic random access memory [DRAM]), thermal memory can achieve a lifetime long enough for practical applications. The scientists also noted that the lifetime can be extended further by combining identical memories together.By theoretically demonstrating the possibility of a thermal memory that is self-recoverable after being read by a thermometer, Wang and Li hope that computers will one day reap the benefits of thermal technology.More information: Wang, Lei and Li, Baowen. “Thermal Memory: A Storage of Phononic Information.” Physical Review Letters 101, 267203 (2008).© 2009 PhysOrg.com Controlling heat and particle currents in nanodevices by quantum observationlast_img read more

first_img Explore further (Phys.org) —Researchers from the University of Kentucky have identified 14 molecular markers in bedbug genes commonly associated with resistance to pyrethroid, the most popular pesticide used to control them. In their paper published in the journal Scientific Reports, the team describes how they compared genes from pyrethroid resistant bedbugs found in the Los Angeles area, to those from other areas of the country that had not yet developed a resistance, and as a result were able to identify 14 gene markers, that are associated with resistance to the pesticide. Bedbugs have been in the news of late as outbreaks have occurred in cities throughout the world. They are parasites that feed on the blood of their hosts and leave behind itchy rashes. Efforts to eradicate them have become less effective as the pesticide most commonly used to kill them—pyrethroid—has become less lethal in some areas as the bugs develop resistance to it. In this new effort, the research team compared the genes of bedbugs found in the Los Angeles area that were known to have developed a resistance, with bedbug gene samples from 20 populations from other parts of the country that thus far, have not. In so doing, they found 14 markers, which they report, mostly involve the bugs’ outer shell, which serves as a barrier, preventing the toxin from reaching the inner body, allowing it to survive.The markers found by the researchers represent genes responsible for a variety of outer shell properties such as shell thickness, enzyme levels involved in metabolizing pyrethroid, etc. They also found that the markers represented two categories of defense, those responsible for neutralizing the pesticide before it could reach sensitive areas, and those that physically prevented the chemical from gaining entry to the body in the first place. Taken together, the markers represent a formidable line of defense that has evolved with bedbugs that helps them survive in a hostile environment.Because bedbugs are evolving in ways that make them resistant to current pesticides, researchers are looking for other ways to kill them—learning more about the ways they are evolving that help them survive doses of pyrethroid gives researchers a better picture of what is occurring, which will hopefully result in revealing an unknown vulnerability that could be exploited for use in a new kind of pesticide. Journal information: Scientific Reports More information: Bed bugs evolved unique adaptive strategy to resist pyrethroid insecticides, Scientific Reports 3, 1456, doi:10.1038/srep01456AbstractRecent advances in genomic and post-genomic technologies have facilitated a genome-wide analysis of the insecticide resistance-associated genes in insects. Through bed bug, Cimex lectularius transcriptome analysis, we identified 14 molecular markers associated with pyrethroid resistance. Our studies revealed that most of the resistance-associated genes functioning in diverse mechanisms are expressed in the epidermal layer of the integument, which could prevent or slow down the toxin from reaching the target sites on nerve cells, where an additional layer of resistance (kdr) is possible. This strategy evolved in bed bugs is based on their unique morphological, physiological and behavioral characteristics and has not been reported in any other insect species. RNA interference-aided knockdown of resistance associated genes showed the relative contribution of each mechanism towards overall resistance development. Understanding the complexity of adaptive strategies employed by bed bugs will help in designing the most effective and sustainable bed bug control methods. Citation: Researchers identify genes involved in bedbug pesticide resistance (2013, March 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-03-genes-involved-bedbug-pesticide-resistance.html © 2013 Phys.org Entomologists make important discovery regarding insecticide resistance in bed bugs This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

first_imgEnvironment should be top priority of any government and it should be ensured that there is no “irreversible” damage due to development, National Green Tribunal Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said on Thursday.Although development works are bound to hurt the environment, if the damage “is manageable, they should be allowed with strict compliance to the environmental laws”, he said, stressing that no development can serve the people if they do not have clean air and water. “Environment should be top priority of any government. Also Read – Need to understand why law graduate’s natural choice is not legal profession: CJIYou can live without food for a while but you cannot live even a minute without clean air and water. Awareness about the environment is an essential feature for a proper life today.We must create consciousness about environment and teach it at school and college levels.”No development, powerhouse, nuclear station, guns etc are going to serve you better if you cannot breathe and drink water,” Justice Kumar said while speaking at “consultative meet on fly ash” organised by Centre for Fly Ash Research and Management (C-FARM).Justice Kumar said that although every development is bound to hurt the environment but one needs to ensure that an “irreversible” damage is not caused to the environment.”If the damage is manageable, it should be allowed with strict compliance to the environmental laws. Whatever drawback the development leaves, there must be a system in place to handle it completely,” he said.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will set out for her tour to North Bengal on Monday.Banerjee will be holding several meetings in North Bengal, to take stock of the present situation of the work that has been taken up for overall development of the region.She will be holding district level administrative review meetings and attending programmes in North Bengal districts. She will also be holding discussions on different issues related to tea gardens and its employees. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedThe Chief Minister will be holding the district level administrative review meeting at the state government’s administrative headquarters in North Bengal – Uttar Kanya – on Monday evening.It may be mentioned that earlier, the administrative review meeting was scheduled to be held in Jalpaiguri. But later it was finalised that the meeting will be held in Uttar Kanya. Despite change in the venue of the administrative review meeting, the remaining schedule of the Chief Minister’s tour in North Bengal remains unchanged. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPOn Tuesday, Banerjee will be visiting Changrabandha in Cooch Behar, where she will be attending a programme of the state government. She will also be holding a meeting at Changrabandha on the same day.On Wednesday, the Chief Minister will be holding the administrative review meeting of Alipurduar district at Birpara. She will be taking stock of the development works that have been taken up for Alipurduar, that has been curved out of Jalpaiguri as a new district. The present state government has played a major role in creation of Alipurduar district, that has ensured better execution of projects and schemes.During her visit to North Bengal, she will also speak to owners of tea gardens and its concerned authorities. Sources said that there will be discussion over the crucial issues related to the tea gardens. The matters about the employees will also come up in the meeting.The people of North Bengal are waiting for the moment of the Chief Minister’s arrival, as they will be receiving her at the airport with enthusiasm and congratulate her for ensuring overall development of the region.Senior police officers in North Bengal districts have taken all necessary steps to ensure that no untoward incident takes place during the Chief Minister’s visit.Security arrangement has been strengthened and both the bomb and dog squad have been carrying out frisking operations at different locations in North Bengal.last_img read more

first_img Categories: LaFave News State Rep. Beau LaFave joined the Michigan House of Representatives Wednesday in approving legislation encouraging Michigan counties to establish and maintain veteran service offices through a new grant program.Under the legislation LaFave is helping sponsor, each county with a veteran service office that satisfies pre-approved requirements will receive $25,000, plus an additional amount based on the number of veterans in the county. To continue receiving the grant, an established county veteran service office must meet benchmarks for staff performance and reporting while maintaining the previous year’s funding level.“There are many veterans in the Upper Peninsula who have to drive to an outside county to see an accredited Veteran Service Officer and there are many others who are not even aware of the services available in their county’s veteran services department,” said LaFave of Iron Mountain. “I cannot stress enough how vital this grant is for local veterans. We need to improve access to these services for all our heroes residing in the rural areas across the state.”Depending on the county, a Veteran Service Officer may only be available for a few hours each month at a single location. There are 11 Michigan counties currently without a county veteran services department. LaFave said this could be due to a number of issues – including lack of funding – and how this legislation will address the stagnant funds occurring in all parts of the state.House Bill 5536 now advances to the Senate for further consideration. 15Mar LaFave votes to invest in local veteran serviceslast_img read more

first_imgNews Corp’s board has approved the company’s split into separate media and publishing businesses and has named the boards of the new media company, 21st Century Fox, and the new News Corp publishing business.The formal separation of the companies is expected to take place on June 28. News Corp’s board has approved the distribution of all shares of the new News Corp to the company’s stockholders in a ratio of one share of the new News Corporation for every four shares of News Corp.The board also authorized a US$500 million (€390 million) stock repurchase programme for the new News Corp following completion of the separation.The 21st Century Fox board will comprise Rupert Murdoch, James Breyer, Chase Carey, David DeVoe, Viet Dinh, Sir Roderick Eddington, James Murdoch, Lachlan Murdoch and Álvaro Uribe as well as new additions Delphine Arnault, director of Christian Dior, Jacques Nasser, a non-executive advisory partner of One Equity Partners and Robert Silberman, the executive chairman of Strayer Education.The new News Corp board will comprise Rupert Murdoch, José Maria Aznar, Natalie Bancroft, Peter Barnes, Elaine Chao, Joel Klein, James Murdoch, Lachlan Murdoch and new additions John Elkann, Ana Paula Pessoa, Masroor Siddiqui and Robert Thomson.last_img read more

first_imgUS TV network NBC is to provide over 50 hours of live virtual reality coverage of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in partnership with Intel.NBC will use Intel’s True VR technology to deliver VR coverage of the games to authenticated users with Windows Mixed Reality headsets, Samsung Gear VR, and both Google Cardboard and Google Daydream, with compatible iOS or Android devices via the NBC Sports VR app.According to NBC, this will be the first time that Olympic VR programming will be available live in the US on siuch a wide range of devices and platforms.The 50 hours of live VR programming, which will be supplied to the broadcaster by Olympic Broadcasting Services, will include the opening and closing ceremonies as well as coverage of alpine skiing, curling, snowboarding, skeleton, figure skating, short track, ski jumping, ice hockey and big air.NBC will also provide VR replays of previously live-streamed events, one daily 360° degree video of a sport not available in VR the previous day and packaged highlights from the previous cay’s events.Intel’s True VR technology employs multiple camera pods at each event to create interactive 360° virtual reality environments. Viewers will be able to customise their experience by switching between multiple vantange points, hear natural sound captured at each camera location to provide a truly immersive experience, and enjoy real-time stats, leaderboards and post-event results.“The Olympics have long been an opportunity to showcase emerging media technology. With the help of Intel’s industry-leading virtual reality technology, NBC Olympics will deliver a transformative experience that will bring to Olympic fans an entirely new perspective on the speed, thrills, and excitement of an Olympic Winter Games,” said Gary Zenkel, president, NBC Olympics.“The Olympic Games is a unique opportunity to bring people from around the world together to build camaraderie and cheer for their favorite athletes. We are enabling a truly immersive experience, where fans get closer to the action than ever before allowing them feel like they are sitting in the stands for a front and center view of history being made,” said James Carwana, vice president and general manager of Intel Sports Group.last_img read more