first_img Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Travelweek Group MSC opens sales on new Bellissima ship, debuting March 2019center_img GENEVA — Sales for the highly anticipated MSC Bellissima is now open, giving club members a jumpstart on booking MSC Cruises’ second Meraviglia-generation mega-ship.Sales are initially open exclusively to MSC Voyagers Club members as one of the many benefits of the program. Bookings will open on May 15 for all other guests.When booking MSC Bellissima, MSC Voyagers Club members will also receive a special 5% discount in addition to their current MSC Voyagers Club early booking discount. All other guests will enjoy a 5% discount on early booking fares until Oct. 31, 2017.Beginning in March 2019, MSC Bellissima will cruise the Western Mediterranean for its inaugural season. She will embark on her maiden voyage from Genoa, Italy on March 24, 2019 and call at Marseille and Barcelona, as well as other Mediterranean hotpots like Naples, Messina in Sicily and Valetta in Malta.Onboard, guests will find a wealth of exciting amenities including an unprecedented choice of fine dining and casual options at 10 dining venues, a Mediterranean-style promenade with a 262-foot LED Sky screen, and a dedicated lounge for families called the DOREMI Studio Lounge. Kids will also love the DOREMI Tech Lab, a must-visit destination for curious minds.More news:  Honolulu authorities investigate arsons at 3 Waikiki hotels; no injuries reportedA major highlight onboard will be two Cirque du Soleil at Sea shows, which will take place six nights per week in the purpose-built Carousel Lounge. Ahead of each performance, guests can enjoy an exclusive pre-show dinner service, a unique experience that’s available both on MSC Meraviglia (deputing this June) as well as the MSC Bellissima. As an early booking incentive, all guests who book a sailing on MSC Bellissima by July 3, 2017 will receive a complimentary Cirque du Soleil at Sea dinner and show experience as part of their cruise booking.“Bearing testimony to our focus on innovation, MSC Bellissima will be the fourth new ship coming into service in just two years,” said Gianni Onorato, Chief Executive Officer of MSC Cruises. “She will join what is already one of the most modern fleets at sea as our long-standing focus is to always offer our guests the most modern and innovative ships to ensure they make the most out of their vacation at sea.”More news:  Save the dates! Goway’s Africa Roadshow is backPrices for MSC Bellissima start at $1,199 per person for a balcony stateroom. The ship is currently under construction at the STX France shipyard. Monday, May 1, 2017 Tags: MSC Cruiseslast_img read more

first_img HOUSTON — Major dangers for the U.S. Gulf Coast area loomed after an explosion at a Texas chemical plant early Thursday and the threat of major flooding further east near the Texas-Louisiana line as Harvey’s floodwaters began receding in the Houston area after five days of torrential rain.Beaumont and Port Arthur, Texas, struggled with rising water as the area was pounded with what remained of the weakening storm, while Houston’s fire department said it would begin a block-by-block search Thursday of thousands of flooded homes. Assistant Fire Chief Richard Mann said the searches were to ensure “no people were left behind.”The confirmed death toll climbed to at least 31, including six family members – four of them children – whose bodies were pulled Wednesday from a van that had been swept off a Houston bridge into a bayou.Houston’s two major airports were up and running again Wednesday. Officials said they were resuming limited bus and light rail service as well as trash pickup.“Unfortunately, it seems that our worst thoughts are being realized,” Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said after the van that disappeared over the weekend was found in 10 feet of muddy water.The Houston-area chemical plant that lost power after Harvey engulfed the area in extensive floods was rocked by two explosions early Thursday, the plant’s operator said. The Arkema Inc. plant had been left without refrigeration for chemicals that become volatile as the temperature rises.The Harris County Sheriff’s Office said in a tweet that a deputy was taken to the hospital after inhaling fumes. Nine other deputies drove themselves to the hospital as a precaution.The company shut down the Crosby site before Harvey made landfall last week, but a crew of 11 had stayed behind. That group was removed and residents living within a 1.5-mile (2.4-kilometre) radius were told to evacuate Tuesday after the plant lost power.More news:  Universal enhances popular Harry Potter vacation package with new perksAnother threat was emerging east of Houston where weather conditions deteriorated close to the Louisiana line.Beaumont and Port Arthur worked to evacuate residents after Harvey completed a U-turn in the Gulf of Mexico and rolled ashore early Wednesday for the second time in six days. It hit southwestern Louisiana as a tropical storm with heavy rain and winds of 45 mph.When Harvey paid its return visit to land, it hit near Cameron, Louisiana, about 45 miles from Port Arthur.Port Arthur found itself increasingly isolated as floodwaters swamped most major roads out of the city.More than 500 people – along with dozens of dogs, cats, a lizard and a monkey – took shelter at the Max Bowl bowling alley in the city, said the establishment’s general manager, Jeff Tolliver.“The monkey was a little surprising, but we’re trying to help,” he said.Floodwaters also toppled two oil storage tanks in South Texas, spilling almost 30,000 gallons of crude. It was not immediately clear if any of the spilled oil was recovered. More damage to the oil industry infrastructure is expected to emerge as floodwaters recede.Forecasters downgraded Harvey to a tropical depression late Wednesday from a tropical storm but it still has lots of rain and potential damage to spread, with 4 to 8 inches (10 to 20 centimetres) forecast from the Louisiana-Texas line into Tennessee and Kentucky through Friday. Some spots may get as much as a foot, raising the risk of more flooding.For much of the Houston area, forecasters said the rain is pretty much over.More news:  Windstar celebrates record-breaking bookings in July“We have good news,” said Jeff Lindner, a meteorologist with the Harris County Flood Control District. “The water levels are going down.”At Hermann Park, south of downtown, children glided by in strollers and wagons, joggers took in midday runs and couples walked beside cascading fountains and beneath a sparkling sun. People pulled into drive-thru restaurants and emerged from a store with groceries.At the same time, many thousands of Houston-area homes are under water and could stay that way for days or weeks. And Lindner cautioned that homes near at least one swollen bayou could still get flooded.Officials said 911 centres in the Houston area are getting more than 1,000 calls an hour from people seeking help.Altogether, more than 1,000 homes in Texas were destroyed and close to 50,000 damaged, and over 32,000 people were in shelters across the state, emergency officials reported. About 10,000 more National Guard troops are being deployed to Texas, bringing the total to 24,000, Gov. Greg Abbott said.In Orange, Texas, about 30 miles east of Beaumont, residents of a retirement home surrounded by thigh-deep water were rescued by National Guardsmen and wildlife officers, who carried them from the second floor and put them aboard an airboat.Harvey initially came ashore as a Category 4 hurricane in Texas on Friday, then went back out to sea and lingered off the coast as a tropical storm for days, inundating flood-prone Houston.Harvey’s five straight days of rain totalled close to 52 inches, the heaviest tropical downpour ever recorded in the continental U.S. Share By: Nomaan Merchant & Juan A. LozanoSource: The Associated Press Thursday, August 31, 2017 << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Texas, Travel Alert Houston’s airports re-open as floodwaters recede but dangers still loomlast_img read more

first_img LINCOLN, NB — Nebraska’s no longer nice, at least in its next tourism campaign. The new sales pitch has a decidedly self-deprecating bent: “Nebraska. Honestly, it’s not for everyone.”The slogan, which the Nebraska Tourism Commission unveiled Wednesday at a Nebraska City conference, will replace the current “Through My Eyes” campaign this spring, commission marketing manager Jenn Gjerde said Thursday.State tourism director John Ricks told the Omaha World-Herald that because Nebraska consistently ranks as the least likely state tourists plan to visit, the marketing campaign needed to be different.“To make people listen, you have to hook them somehow,” Ricks said. “We had to shake people up.”Nebraska has used several slogans in its efforts to entice tourists, including, “America’s Frontier”, “My Choice, Nebraska” and “Nebraska … the good life.”The slogan that debuted in 2014 was: “Visit Nebraska. Visit nice.”One of the new video ads that will begin running next spring opens with a boy peering through oversized glasses into the camera. The background music is quirky.More news:  Carnival Cruise Line enhances HUB app for families and youthThen comes a voice: “Nebraska is kind of like that odd kid. Didn’t say much in school. Slightly peculiar maybe. But when you took the time to get to know him, turned out he was pretty interesting.”Another ad shows two people walking and jumping over the toadstool rock formations at Toadstool Geologic Park in northwestern Nebraska. Words appearing on the photo say: “Famous for our flat, boring landscape.”Ricks told the Lincoln Journal Star that “the perception of a place to visit in people’s heads is more important than the things to see and do when you get there.”“Because, if they’re not here, they don’t get to enjoy those things. … So we had to find a way to get people here,” he said. Nebraska’s message for tourists? “It’s not for everyone” Share Friday, October 19, 2018 By: The Associated Press Tags: Nebrasha << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

first_imgNew Bill Proposed by Texas Lawmakers to Completely Eliminate the CFPB Share in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, News John RatcliffeTed CruzVarious legislation has been introduced by Republicans in an attempt to reduce the power of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in the last year, but there has not been any law proposed to completely eliminate the Bureau – until now.During a week in which the Bureau celebrates the fourth anniversary of its creation, U.S. Representative John Ratcliffe and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, both Republicans from Texas, have combined to sponsor a bill that would completely abolish the CFPB, according to announcements on both lawmakers’ websites.Republicans believe the CFPB, which was created from the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, has had the opposite effect of its intended purpose of protecting consumers from predatory financial activity; rather, they believe the Bureau has made big banks bigger and limits options for consumers.”Don’t let the name fool you, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau does little to protect consumers,” said Cruz, who is a GOP candidate for the presidency in 2016. “The agency continues to grow in power and magnitude without any accountability to Congress and the people. The only way to stop this runaway agency is by eliminating it altogether. The legislation that Representative Ratcliffe and I are introducing today gives Congress the opportunity to free consumers and small businesses from the CFPB’s regulatory blockades and financial activism, which stunt economic growth. While there’s much more to do to scale back the harmful regulatory impositions of Dodd-Frank, this legislation takes a critical step in the right direction. So today let’s celebrate the CFPB’s fourth and final anniversary.”Republicans believe that Bureau is unaccountable to the American people because unlike most federal agencies, the CFPB is not subject to Congressional appropriations despite being funded by the Federal Reserve. Cruz and Ratcliffe believe this situation “invites regulatory excess and abuse.”Ratcliffe said he hears from small businesses in the fourth district of Texas, which includes the northeastern most part of the state, who say they can no longer provide their customers with basic financial services because of the increased compliance costs and paperwork hours imposed by the CFPB. He said many businesses are faced with the choice of closing their doors or consolidating into larger businesses due to the increasing cost of compliance.“The CFPB’s regulatory zeal has stripped American consumers and businesses of their freedom of choice and has limited their access to capital – all in the name of a ‘we know best’ attitude from Washington,” Ratcliffe said. “. . .I’m grateful to be able to introduce this bill with 46 of my House colleagues in conjunction with Senator Cruz. The CFPB represents exactly what President Reagan warned of – a government smothering opportunity rather than fostering it. We must eliminate the CFPB.”The GOP has made an extra push for CFPB reform since gaining a majority in the House and Senate last November. In March, Representative Sean Duffy (R-Wisconsin) introduced a series of proposals to reform the CFPB, including one co-sponsored by Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas) that would replace the CFPB’s director with a bipartisan, Senate-approved five-member committee.In February, Representatives Steve Stivers (R-Ohio) and Tim Walz (D-Minnesota) revived a bipartisan bill that would create an independent Inspector General for the CFPB that is appointed by the president and approved by the Senate. The Bureau currently shares an IG with the Federal Reserve, a position that is appointed by the Fed chair and not subject to Senate approval.Democrats have vowed to fight any attempt at cutting back on the CFPB’s power. Last week during a Senate Banking Committee hearing, Congressman Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Ranking Member of that Committee, pointed out the work the CFPB has done in the mortgage space.”Much of the CFPB’s most important work has centered on mortgage regulation,” Brown said. “The agency’s ability to repay rules ensure that consumers are not trapped in mortgages that they cannot afford. The CFPB’s rule to streamline forms will help consumers understand what is happening at the closing table. All of these actions speak for themselves as to why this agency is so important to our nation’s consumers.”Yet, opponents continue to work to undermine the agency – by weakening its independence or changing its structure.  Lately, there have been attempts to chip away at actions the agency has taken on arbitration and small-dollar loans.  They have argued the agency should not be able to collect data – data about markets that were formerly non-transparent and unregulated. I will continue to fight all of these attempts to destabilize the CFPB.  Our consumers deserve a strong watchdog that can do its job independently, and it’s my job to make sure that happens.”center_img July 22, 2015 467 Views Abolish Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 Republicans 2015-07-22 Seth Welbornlast_img read more

first_imgTechnology firms and device manufacturers ABB, Bosch, Cisco, and LG aim have agreed to set up a smart home software platform consortium in Germany. The firms have signed a memorandum of understanding and, subject to antitrust approval, said they plan to develop an open architecture for data exchange that will allow different devices and services – ranging from security to entertainment – to exchange information with each other.The firms said that a common platform like this has not been available before now and that they aim to make different devices compatible with each other and able to communicate over WiFi and wired connections.“This consortium represents an opportunity to bring together a variety of business ecosystem partners, all working together to help make the ‘internet of things’ for the home a reality. Cisco is looking forward to participating in the consortium and creating a standard that allows consumers to experience a connected home,” said Jesper Andersen, senior vice president and general manager, Cisco Service Provider Video Software & Solutions Group.last_img read more

first_img CENTRAL DRIVECRegganDerryMEENAN SQUAREPSNITEENAGE ARRESTED IN DERRY OVER BOOKIES SHOP PARAMILITARY SHOOTINGTIU DETECTIVES from the PSNI’s Terrorist Investigation Unit (TIU)  based at Maydown have made a fresh arrest as part of its probe into a dissident republican shooting last week.The PSNI say a 19-year-old male was arrested today in Meenan Square in the city over the shooting on Monday, March 27 at a bookmakers shop in Creggan’s Central Drive.He has been taken to the serious crime custody suite at Musgrave police station in Belfast for questioning. TEENAGE ARRESTED IN DERRY OVER BOOKIES SHOP PARAMILITARY SHOOTING was last modified: April 5th, 2017 by John2John2 Tags: A 23-year-old man was shot in the leg in the incident last month.Detectives are continuing to investigate and would appeal to anyone with information to contact them at Serious Crime Branch on 101, quoting reference number 1169 of 27/03/17.Alternatively, information can be given anonymously to the Crimestoppers charity by telephoning 0800 555 111.A number of men were arrested last week over the shooting but were later released unconditionally from custody. ShareTweetlast_img read more

first_imgIn This Issue.* Say a prayer for the families in CT… *CPI gives a green light to the FED… * Japanese elections send the yen lower… *Bond investors ignore the rating agencies…And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts!Tragedy in Connecticut… Good day. I will start today’s Pfennig with a moment of silence and encourage all of you to say a quick prayer for the families effected by Friday’s horrific event. . . . . . . There is absolutely nothing that can be said other than my thoughts and prayers go out to the parents and loved ones who lost their lives Friday morning. This is certainly a crazy world in which we live in, and each minute of every day is a gift from god.  Life is short, live it to the fullest!The currency markets were fairly flat on Friday, with the dollar slipping a bit in morning trading but staying within a tight range.  The drop was caused by a larger than expected drop in consumer prices here in the US during the month of November.  The CPI report showed prices fell .3% during November compared to an expected drop of .2%.  The YOY figures showed prices rose 1.8% vs. November of last year, just .1% less than economists projections.  A drop in energy prices is what pushed the overall prices down, and the core (Ex Food and Energy) numbers showed prices actually increased .1% last month.  Currency traders took the dollar lower on this data as inflation doesn’t seem to be presenting any barrier to the Fed’s unlimited stimulus plans. The Euro moved higher on Friday after EU finance ministers agreed to put the ECB in charge of all euro-area lenders.  A single European bank supervisor was one of the items pushed by German leaders, and most believe that it is another necessary step to help avoid future debt problems.  Placing all of the European banks under one set of rules and one regulator should help restore confidence in the banking system and it will also enable the new rescue fund to provide direct bailouts to these banks. The news helped to make the euro one of the best performing currencies vs. the US$ on Friday with a gain of .69%; as I mentioned earlier the overall market was pretty flat.  On the other side of the ledger, the Japanese yen was one of the worst performers on Friday, losing .20% vs. the dollar.  The traders were focused on the Japanese elections which occurred over the weekend.  As expected, Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party led by Shinzo Abe won easily.  The win is going to be seen by Abe as a mandate to act on his campaign promises to get the Japanese economy growing again.  His plan is to double Japan’s inflation goal from 1 to 2% and to provide unlimited easing in order to try and stimulate economic growth.  Abe is wanting to throw all caution to the wind, and will push the Bank of Japan to allow additional monetary expansion. Japan’s currency has fallen over 5% in the past month as it became apparent that Abe would win.  Currency investors are worried that these expansionary policies and ‘forced’ inflation will lead to drop in the value of the Japanese yen.  Sound familiar?  While Bernanke and his compatriots at the Fed haven’t been as vocal as Abe on wanting inflation, I would definitely watch how the markets treat the Japanese yen over the next few weeks as the policies Abe will put into place are similar to those being contemplated by our own central bank.The only currency which performed worse than the Japanese yen on Friday was the Canadian dollar which lost ground vs. the US$ after a week factory sales number.  Statistics Canada said factory manufacturing sales declined 1.4% in October, the biggest decline since January.  The fall was not large (as I have indicated, the currency markets were pretty flat) and was probably more of a easing of an overbought position.  Currency traders were probably ready to take some of their profits in the loonie off the table, and the data presented them with a good opportunity to do just that.  The Canadian dollar still ended the week with a slight gain vs. the US$.Moving back over to the US, Friday’s tragedy has taken the focus of the media away from the debt crisis, which may actually be good for the negotiations.  The glare of the media sometimes has a blinding effect on politicians, keeping them from seeing what lies ahead.  With all of the attention shifted to the tragic events in CT, there has apparently been some progress on the fiscal cliff negotiations.  Republican leaders have put tax increases for the wealthiest back on the table, and this weekend agreed to push the debt limit debate out another year.  Now it is the President’s turn to identify some spending cuts to bring back to the negotiating table. As I mentioned in yesterday’s Pfennig and Pfriends, I expect a compromise to be reached during the final week of this year, but this compromise will not present any ‘real’ solution to our debt problem.  Our leaders in Washington have realized the simplest way to pay down the debt is to simply print more dollars.  This ‘strategy’ (if you can call it that) will work as long as investors continue to accept the US$ as the globe’s reserve currency and buy our debt.  The big problem will occur if/when foreign investors finally decide to reduce their dollar holdings, or if / when a substitute global currency emerges.Chuck is hopefully sleeping in a bit this morning, but sent me the following yesterday to share with all of you this morning:  The latest reports from the IMM Positions of last week show that the net U.S. dollar (USD) short positions really grew!  And the main beneficiaries of those short dollar positions were what the markets call the “dollar bloc” (Aussie, Canada, New Zealand). In fact Aussie dollar long positions grew to a record level! But then, so did Mexican pesos…   Now sure what everyone is all lathered up about regarding pesos, given the history, that apparently the young-guns don’t know about, and have failed to read up about… I had to remind some of the young-guns the other day about when Mexico decided to move the decimal point on their currency valuation… Any way…  I always find these IMM Positions to be interesting and reflecting on what we’re seeing in the spot currency markets each day…  the thing to always keep in mind here is that these futures positions can change in a heartbeat…  So, just use this info as “additional fodder” for your decisions…Thanks for the insight Chuck, we certainly appreciate it!  As Chuck mentioned, the Aussie dollar long positions have grown to a record level, and the value of the AUD certainly reflects this.  The Aussie dollar rose to the strongest in 19 months vs. the Japanese yen but actually move a bit lower vs. the US$ over the weekend.  The RBA will be releasing the minutes from their meeting earlier this month when interest rates were reduced, and investors will be looking for any indications that more rate moves are likely.  Neither Chuck nor I expected the rate cut, and we now expect Australian rates to remain in place into next year.  The RBA just cut rates a bit earlier than we expected. Today we will get the Empire Manufacturing numbers along with the TIC flows which is an indication of just how confident foreign investors are in the US economy.  Tomorrow we will get the Current Account balance for 3rd quarter and the NAHB housing market index.  Wednesday will bring more housing data and Thursday we get 3rd quarter GDP along with the weekly jobs numbers.  And Friday (the end of the world according to some) has an unusually large amount of data with Personal Income and spending along with the Durable Goods numbers for November.And then there was this. Neither Chuck and I have been fans of the rating agencies, as both of us feel they are typically ‘late to the game’ with their credit adjustments.  All of the rating agencies certainly took a hit to their credibility with the subprime meltdown and euro-area bond crisis.  This morning I found an article on Bloomberg which indicates bond investors seem to agree with our skepticism of these rating agencies.  According to Bloomberg, “Yields on sovereign securities moved in the opposite direction from what ratings suggested in 53 percent of the 32 upgrades, downgrades and changes in credit outlook. .. This year, investors ignored 56 percent of Moody’s rating and outlook changes and 50 percent of those by S&P.”  Apparently fixed income investors are relying more and more on their own research, and depending less on the rating of the issue they are purchasing.  This, in my opinion, is a good thing!  Investors should always do their own due diligence, and should never depend simply on a rating by a firm which was paid by the bond issuer rate it. To recap. The currency markets were flat on Friday, with the dollar drifting lower in early trading.  Japanese elections over the weekend pushed the yen lower as a win for Abe and his LDP party assure further stimulus measures in Japan.  No solution for the debt crisis, but negotiations seem to be taking a better turn (that is if you want to see the can kicked further down the road).  The Canadian dollar dropped, but the selloff was likely due to an overbought level rather than a change in sentiment.  And Chuck shared the IMM Position data which indicates the Aussie dollar is a favorite among currency investors.  Currencies today 12/17/12. American Style: A$ $1.0539, kiwi .8439, C$ $1.0128, euro 1.3157, sterling 1.6204, Swiss $1.0893. European Style: rand 8.5624, krone 5.6024, SEK 6.6482, forint 218.29, zloty 3.1060, koruna 19.173, RUB 30.8211, yen 83.74, sing 1.2206, HKD 7.7501, INR 54.855, China 6.2370, pesos 12.782, BRL 2.0877, Dollar Index 79.576, Oil $86.67, 10-year 1.72%, Silver $32.235 and Gold $1,692.60.That’s it for today. Happy Birthday to Jennifer McLean who is turning XX today! No, I won’t do that to Jennifer, but I will let you know that I have been working with Jennifer for nearly 20 years now, so you can do the math (Jenn did start working at a young age!).  I spent most of yesterday over at my mom’s who hosted us for an early Christmas dinner.  I went over a bit early to watch the Rams game with mom who is an avid fan.  Unfortunately our Rams weren’t able to stop the NFL’s leading rusher who put an end to any hopes of a wild card for our home town team.  After the game we had a great time exchanging presents and enjoyed an amazing dinner which she had prepared.  The evening took on a bit more meaning after the tragic events of last Friday.  The holiday season can get very busy and I admit to not being too excited about being ‘dragged’ to family events at times in the past.  But I realize I am very lucky to have so many family members live close by, and I am looking forward to each of the many holiday gatherings which I will be attending over the upcoming holiday season.  Life is sometimes too short, make sure you give your loved ones a hug today.  Thanks for reading the Pfennig, and hopefully we will all have a Magnificent Monday to start off the week.Chris Gaffney, CFA Vice President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 1-314-647-3837last_img read more

first_img Dmitriy: Yes, I know; it was the first picture of a major politician holding a gold bar since De Gaulle. And yes, the Russian central bank bought another 900,000 ounces of gold in April. We now have more gold than the Swiss. But does it make Putin a gold bug? No. He is a hardcore pragmatist above all else. And frankly, the picture of him holding the gold bar was done to make him look manly and prosperous. He has an excellent PR team. The Russian leadership is perfectly aware of gold’s disruptive role to the US dollar. But to them, the yellow metal is just another tool. They don’t care about sound money at all—they are conservative statists, all of them. For example, Elvira Nabiullina, Putin’s recent appointee at the Bank of Russia, is familiar with Ludwig von Mises and is well known in Moscow’s libertarian circles. Yet even she is about to introduce inflation targeting… not exactly a libertarian thing to do. The best refutation of Putin’s alleged gold bug sympathies is the fact that he has not abolished the VAT on bullion bars, though there were rumors of such several years ago. Russia is overburdened with social obligations, and the people in charge do not wish to draw undue attention to the real alternative to the existing monetary regime. Western gold bugs should keep in mind that the US dollar is not the only fiat currency around. Jeff: Is Putin as aggressive with Ukraine as portrayed in Western media? Dmitriy: Putin wishes to save Russians from extinction, restore our pre-revolutionary glory, and destroy NATO in the process. It seems that many in the liberty crowd view the situation there as something akin to Germany and USSR taking over Poland in 1939. It is nothing of the sort. Ukraine is the most artificial state in the whole of Eastern Europe, held together only by foreign subsidies and with zero chance of long-term survival. There is no internal cohesion. This is not to say that everyone in the southeast of the country wants to join Russia, although I would estimate at least half probably wouldn’t mind. The standard of living in Russia is higher and there is no silly “Ukrainization” sponsored by Western taxpayers. I would be surprised if this country lives to see the New Year in its present form. To give a fresh example of the situation there, a couple of weeks ago I had lunch with a lady in charge of Crimean affairs in the Customs Ministry. She told me, “It is unbelievable, the whole place seems to be frozen in the 1980s, there’s nothing there, no terminals, no equipment…” Jeff: Do you anticipate Russians ever getting involved in precious metals? Dmitriy: Yes. There is actually huge potential for this to occur. Russians are extremely adaptable, built to survive, and they’re on a constant lookout for new opportunities. Here are a couple compelling statistics. First, in 1989, it was illegal to own foreign currencies and 99% of the population never even saw American dollars or German marks, let alone owned them—but five years later, every grandma in the country had one or two $100 notes for a rainy day. Second, there are about 200,000 millionaires in Russia today. Yet if you scour every coin dealer and online auction in Russia, you will not find more than 500 one-ounce gold investment coins at any one time. The supply is minuscule. I firmly believe that when the existing world financial system finally crashes and burns, as it inevitably will, Russians will rush into precious metals. Mini-rushes, as in the fall of 2008 and August of 2011, were just a foretaste of things to come. And when Russians stampede, I can tell you it is a sight to behold. So I wish patience to my gold-owning colleagues all over the world. Our time will come. Jeff: As the saying goes, we live in interesting times. We appreciate your input, Dmitriy. Dmitriy: You’re welcome, Jeff. We’ll talk again soon. If any of your readers would like to contact me, I can be reached at db@goldenfront.ru. With Russia rising to the forefront of world affairs as well as natural-resource-related events, we thought it timely to find out more about Russians’ attitude toward gold. We’ve been in touch with Russian bullion expert Dmitriy Balkovskiy for over a year and decided to get his take. Here’s the view from Russia… Jeff Clark: Thanks for joining us, Dmitriy. Tell us about your background. Dmitriy Balkovskiy: I live in Moscow, but have studied and worked in both the US and New Zealand. I edit Goldenfront.ru, a Russian bullion investment news service. We translate and publish commentary about precious metals from English-speaking sources, including many of your articles. We’ve been online since June 2010, and our site is libertarian oriented. Our archives now have more than 2,400 articles from 520 authors. Jeff: You mentioned to me previously that Russia is not quite as bullish on gold as the West portrays. Dmitriy: It seems to me that Western gold investors are too optimistic about Putin’s love affair with gold. The reality is not as straightforward as it’s sometimes portrayed by Western media. First, a little background. The old Soviet Union viewed gold and silver as strategic metals and a matter of national security. Private ownership of precious metals in any form except jewelry and numismatic coins was strictly forbidden. People went to jail for merely owning a gold bar. The official gold content in one Soviet ruble equaled 0.167674 grams in 1936, 0.222168 grams in 1950, and 0.987412 grams in 1961. Here’s a picture of a Soviet-era 50-ruble banknote, which amounted to the average weekly wage in the 1980s. There is also a one-ounce silver St. George, with a 600,000 mintage. Jeff: Are American Eagles or Canadian Maple Leafs available? Dmitriy: Not at banks. And what is available is extremely expensive. As an example, the only reasonably priced gold bullion at the Russian Agricultural Bank, one of the top 10 rated banks in Russia, is the St. George coin. On June 5 it was quoted at 12,650 rubles per quarter-ounce ($1 = 34.5 rubles), which equates to $1,467 per ounce. The cheapest one-ounce silver coin costs $55. However, most silver coins on offer are actually a half-ounce, with some priced at $100 an ounce or more. A one-ounce silver St. George is not available, and as with gold, there are no Eagles. I would estimate that about 75% of coins sold are silver commemoratives. They are bought mainly as business or personal gifts, not as an investment. Since only banks can transact in bars and they aren’t competitive on price or selection, private investment coin dealers fill the gap. Today Moscow boasts five or six small companies offering gold and silver investment coins at prices comparable to Europe or the US. They have appeared over the past four to five years, but are still absent in less populated areas. Jeff: So banks are the main source for buying bullion? Dmitriy: Yes. I’ll note that banks are allowed to charge premiums based on spot prices for bars, but not with coins. Regulations list bars as “raw gold,” but banks are stuck with what they paid for coins because they’re considered a “finished” product. If a bank paid $1,700 for a batch of gold coins, it must resell them at this price until the whole batch is sold off. So the banks frequently end up selling coins with markups of 100% or more. The vast majority of bullion outside Moscow and St Petersburg is mostly of local mintage. Jeff: You told me about a creative angle for smuggling. Dmitriy: In 2012, one of our Siberian contacts, an owner of a small gold mining operation (8,000 to 12,000 ounces annual production), was in Moscow looking for ways to “export” his gold. Since he operates without a mining license, he turned his metal into very crude cutlery and smuggled it to China as “forks and knives.” The miner estimated that China receives about two to three metric tons of gold per year this way, saying he knows other “tableware makers” like him. It may be a relatively small amount compared to official imports from Hong Kong, but it shows the opacity of gold supply and demand here. The Russian government still has not liberalized small-scale gold prospecting, in spite of prior promises. Jeff: So how does the average Russian view gold? Dmitriy: To be honest, without any enthusiasm. Russian Business TV does regular polls on our investment and savings preferences, and the latest poll from May showed that of 13,442 respondents, 523 were in favor of “investing in precious metals”—less than 4% of those surveyed. You have an established gold bug community in the English-speaking world, with thousands of articles and personalities, whereas the topic here is a complete unknown to over 95% of the population. I should mention that political ideology also plays a role in shaping Russians’ perception of gold. For liberals, the West is flawless and will reign forever, so there is no sense in betting against the masters of the universe and, consequently, no point in buying gold. For conservatives both communist and nationalist, the West is evil and forever scheming to undermine Russia. The Rothschilds and the CIA rule everything, and gold investment is another one of their frauds to rip off the Third World. It is amusing to note how both extremes view the West as all-powerful. Jeff: I’ve seen a photo of Putin holding a gold bar, and I think he looks pretty appreciative. I’m not holding my breath that I’ll see Obama holding a bar of gold anytime soon…center_img The highlighted writing at the bottom says, “Banknotes are backed by gold, precious metals, and other assets of the State Bank.” Of course, gold was not exchangeable for rubles; it could only be bought in jewelry form. In 1989, it averaged 50-60 rubles per gram. Jeff: But the USSR has been gone for a quarter-century. Hasn’t the situation with precious metals changed? Dmitriy: Repressive Soviet laws are still on the books in modern-day Russia. It is illegal to buy or sell bullion bars anywhere except at banks that have a precious metals license, and very few have them. So if you buy or sell a gold bar from your friend or relative, you commit a criminal offense. There are also special rules for transportation of bullion bars, and breaking them entails a prison term. Taking bullion bars out of the country is illegal. Selling and buying of foreign-made bullion bars is also illegal. To top it off, there are enormous hurdles for bullion coin importers. I hasten to add that these laws are not strictly enforced; there are no gold owners languishing in Russian jails. But the laws remain on the books. To make matters worse, bullion bars are subject to 18% VAT, and as a result, spreads are enormous. For example, one major bullion bank—Nomos—on May 29 sold 50-gram gold bars for 85,938 rubles ($1,547 per ounce) and bought them back for 67,890 rubles ($1,222 per ounce). The gold pm fix that day was $1,255. Jeff: Wow. Is it the same for coins? Dmitriy: Coins are the only reasonably priced bullion vehicle available for ordinary Russians. They are not subject to as many restrictions, are VAT free, and sold in banks and licensed numismatic shops. The quarter-ounce gold St. George is popular, with four million minted in just the past several years. However, as many as 50% of these coins have serious quality issues—reddish spots and even small “craters,” as you can see here.last_img read more

first_img Attorney General Jeff Sessions might be seeking to resume enforcement of federal cannabis laws without changing Justice Department policy. 3 min read Green Entrepreneur provides how-to guides, ideas and expert insights for entrepreneurs looking to start and grow a cannabis business. What Every Cannabis Entrepreneur Needs to Understand About the Cole Memo Guest Writer Subscribe Now Cannabis Next Article Get 1 Year of Green Entrepreneur for $19.99 –sharescenter_img The Cole memorandum pops up frequently in media reports and discussions about the legal marijuana industry. This is especially true in recent days, when it appears it could be under attack by the Trump Administration.But just what is the Cole Memo? Simply put, it’s all that stands between legal adult-use marijuana businesses and getting arrested by federal agents. Consequently, it’s the most important document in the legal marijuana industry.It’s even more important now. In recent days, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has sent letters to Colorado, Oregon and Washington indicating he believes the states may not stand in compliance with the memo.Related: Oakland Explores Reparations for Those Persecuted by the War on DrugsCole Memo OverviewAs states began legalization of adult-use marijuana, the federal government under then-President Barack Obama faced a challenge. With states legalizing marijuana, how should the federal government go about enforcing federal laws? Marijuana was, and still is, a Schedule I illegal drug under federal law.Cracking down on marijuana sales would impede the rights of those who had voted for its use in those states. It also would violate the doctrine of states’ rights. In an attempt at compromise, Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole wrote a memorandum in 2013 calling for the Justice Department to not enforce federal law on marijuana against cannabis businesses operating legally under state law.However, the memo stands on the idea that states will enact regulatory framework that tracks marijuana from seed to sale. The memo also requires states to work for prevention of:Distribution to minorsMarijuana profits from going to criminal enterprisesMarijuana being distributed from a legal state to an adjacent state where it’s illegalLegal marijuana providing cover for the sale of other, illegal drugsViolence or firearms becoming involved in the marijuana industryDrugged driving or other negative impact on public healthThe growing of marijuana on public landsThe possession of marijuana on public landsRelated: Getting Healthy, Not High: Using Cannabis to Fight CancerWhy it’s a bigger deal nowIn recent weeks, Sessions has sent letters to leaders in Colorado, Oregon and Washington asking for detailed reports on how they are adhering to the memo. He also apparently repeated that the federal government plans to enforce laws against marijuana, which he called a “dangerous drug.”For some, this signals he might be looking at violations of the memo’s “prevention of” section. Meanwhile, the Associated Press obtained portions of a report that a committee formed by Sessions delivered last month.The Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety apparently developed no new policies for Sessions to implement. According to the Associated Press, the group “largely reiterates the current Justice Department policy on marijuana.”Given that, Sessions focus on the Cole memo may indicate a new approach. While to this point it’s been all talk, the cannabis industry will continue paying very close attention to Sessions in case talk turns to action.Follow dispensaries.com on Twitter to stay up to date on the latest cannabis news. August 15, 2017 dispensaries.com Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Easy Search. Quality Finds. Your partner and digital portal for the cannabis community. Add to Queue Jeff Sessions Image credit: Alex Wong | Getty Imageslast_img read more

first_img Next Article Green Entrepreneur Podcast Listen Now Editor in Chief of Green Entrepreneur Competition –shares Jonathan Small Back in 2003, Tim Blake was looking for a way to celebrate all of his cannabis growing comrades in Mendocino County, California. He noticed that other agriculture industries usually had celebrations at the end of harvest, so why shouldn’t marijuana growers? “I always like those country fairs  — the sights and smells and I thought, we should do that with cannabis,” he says.Only one problem. Although medical marijuana was legal in the state back in the day, many of his growing friends weren’t exactly on the up and up. This made advertising the event impossible. But word got around and somehow Blake managed to gather 100 people at his farm called Area 101 and give out a dozen or so rewards for their flower. Some people were so concerned about being caught that they wore masks to the event. Even some of those who won awards for their pot didn’t come up to the stage to accept their prize for fear of being identified. But an iconic event was born. The Emerald Cup. The first-ever open public consumption cannabis competition in the U.S.Related: This Is How Your Cannabis Is GrownCannabis Isn’t the Only Thing GrowingThis weekend marks the 15th Emerald Cup. The event is no longer held in the woods but at the sprawling Sonoma County Fair Grounds in Santa Rosa. Thirty-thousand people are expected to attend this year — a number that’s grown since the legalization of recreational marijuana in the state. Back in the day, you had to have a medical license to get in the door. Now all you need is a photo ID that proves you’re legal age. The lively event is home to cannabis vendors, organic food trucks, garden parties, presentations on topics such as “Cannabis Spirituality” and “The Future of Vaping,” live music and even a live podcast from stoner icons Jay and Silent Bob.There’s a Morrocan-themed VIP room, regenerative agriculture exhibit, and a consumption area that’s clearly designated by neon green signs that read  “Cannabis consumption is all good beyond this point.”  The air is so thick with smoke here, you’d think the entire Emerald Triangle was on fire. True to Emerald Cup tradition, five hundred entries across multiple categories including flowers, concentrates, edibles, CO2 cartridges, topicals and a range of CBD categories, will compete for Emerald Cup honors. Winners receive hand-crafted glass trophies made by local artists and a ton of bragging rights. Related: The Cannabis Industry’s Largest Conference Showcases a Maturing Industry  Image credit: Jonathan Small December 16, 2018 3 min read At The Emerald Cup The Cannabis Runneth Over Entrepreneur Staff Each week hear inspiring stories of business owners who have taken the cannabis challenge and are now navigating the exciting but unpredictable Green Rush. Add to Queuelast_img read more

first_img 3 min read Nina Zipkin Add to Queue What Millennials Want in a Workplace Really Isn’t So Crazy After All Entrepreneur Staff Next Article Apply Now » The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue.center_img Millennials –shares Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture. 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Are millennials optimistic, socially conscious digital natives or coddled layabouts who can only communicate with a phone in their hand? Since different generations have been bemoaning the ills of the other since the beginning of time, it’s probably not super productive to paint an entire group with such a broad brush, either way you slice it. With that in mind, IBM released a study today called “Myths, exaggerations and uncomfortable truths: The real story behind millennials in the workplace,” which aims to debunk the unflattering narratives that follow the young cohort around, especially when it comes to their attitudes in the business world. Related: Managing Millennials: 5 Tips on Overseeing ‘First Timers’In the summer of 2014, the company polled 1,784 working adults in 12 different countries — millennials (21-34), Gen X (35-49) and baby boomers (50-60) – and ultimately found that across generations, most employees want largely the same things out of a work environment. When asked what qualities were most important in a manager, having a boss that was ethical and fair topped the list for all three generations, with 35 percent of millennials and baby boomers and 37 percent of Gen Xers making that choice, with transparency and dependability ranked second and third in importance. Related: Why More Millennials are Bullish on EntrepreneurshipAs for the belief that millennials were raised with a “trophies for all” mentality, 64 percent of Gen Xers thought everyone on a successful team should be rewarded while 55 percent of millennials agreed with that statement. And Gen X employees were also more likely than their millennial colleagues to want to get input from the crowd when it came to making decision (64 percent compared to 56 percent for millennials).And when it comes time to leave a one job for another opportunity, all three generations were most likely (42 percent of millennials, 47 percent of Gen X and 42 percent of baby boomers) to say they would go if they had the opportunity to take on a higher-paying gig in a more innovative environment.Related: 3 Things You Need to Know to Recruit and Retain MillennialsThe company also held a panel yesterday at its downtown Manhattan offices to discuss the findings of the study. The talk featured Adrian Granzella Larssen, the editor-in-chief of The Muse, Erica Dhawan, the founder and CEO of Cotential and co-author of the upcoming Get Big Things Done, Dan Newman, founder and president of Broadsuite, Inc., David Burstein, founder and CEO of Run for America and the author of Fast Future: How the Millennial Generation is Shaping Our World, and Jonathan Yarmis, a senior analyst at the Skills Connection.The overall theme of the panel was that the big problems we face can be solved more effectively together. Speaking to his own experience being a millennial CEO, Newman agreed.”Are millennials different by the means in which they want to communicate? Yes. Having sat on boards with 10 CEOS who were all over 50 years old when I was 28 years old, they didn’t want to text message me…but at the heart of it, the way these CEOs inspired an organization came down to the fact that they understood how to communicate with people…great leadership comes down to the ability to communicate values and vision.”Related: Is Job Hopping Losing Its Bad Rap? (Infographic) February 19, 2015last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Feb 13 2019In the largest study to date on phthalates and postmenopausal breast cancer, a University of Massachusetts Amherst cancer epidemiology researcher found no association between breast cancer risk and exposure to the plasticizing and solvent chemicals used in such common products as shampoo, makeup, vinyl flooring, toys, medical devices and car interiors.Published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, the research “rules out any extreme increase in risk,” but still leaves open the question of whether some relationship exists between phthalate exposure and breast cancer, says Katherine Reeves, associate professor in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences.”Our research has raised almost as many questions as it’s answered,” says Reeves, whose study was funded with a three-year, $1.5 million grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. “I think this is an important contribution to the literature, but there’s still a lot more work to be done, including looking at younger women.”Virtually everyone in the United States is exposed to phthalates in varying degrees, primarily by eating and drinking food and liquid that has come in contact with products containing the chemicals, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention fact sheet. After ingestion, the body breaks down phthalates into metabolites that are quickly excreted in urine and can be analyzed. “If you’re excreting more, likely you are exposed to more,” Reeves says.For their prospective study, the first to measure phthalate exposure before a cancer diagnosis, Reeves and UMass Amherst colleagues turned to the Women Health Initiative (WHI), a long-term national health study involving more than 160,000 postmenopausal women. Prospective cohort studies allow researchers to calculate disease incidence in proper time sequence, establishing exposure level before outcome is known, which provides stronger evidence than other study types.UMass Amherst researchers examined levels of 11 phthalate metabolites in urine samples from 419 women who were diagnosed with invasive breast cancer after Year 3 of the WHI. They also studied samples from 838 healthy women who didn’t develop breast cancer.Two or three urine samples from each participant – from baseline, Year 1 and Year 3 – were measured, addressing two of the challenges of studying phthalate exposure, Reeves says. Previous studies examined urine samples after a breast cancer diagnosis, when exposure could have come from medical equipment or medication. In Reeves’ study, “the samples were collected when everyone was healthy, so that gave us samples that were free of concern that differences in exposure could be related to the diagnosis and treatment.”Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerCancer killing capability of lesser-known immune cells identifiedSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyIn addition, analyzing several urine samples was expected to increase the chances of having a more accurate picture of exposure. Half of phthalate metabolites are excreted in urine within 12 to 24 hours of exposure, Reeves says. “If you’re relying on a single measurement, you may be misclassifying people and either getting no association or the wrong association.”Even though researchers analyzed several urine samples from each person taken a few years apart, Reeves says the study had limitations. “People’s phthalate exposure changes quite a bit over time, and this makes it challenging to characterize the people who are the most exposed and who are the least, which is what we need to be able to do in order to evaluate whether higher phthalate exposure is related to breast cancer risk,” Reeves says. “Using two to three samples per person helped, but it wasn’t fully able to overcome that challenge.”Reeves says future research would benefit from studying younger women. “The most critical time for breast cancer development is in previous years. Looking at women in their 50s and 60s may not be the most important exposure period,” she says.Additional urine samples – perhaps 10 to 20 – would allow researchers to more accurately characterize exposure as low, medium or high. The study also recommends future research should take a closer look at postmenopausal women not on hormone replacement therapy because “some potentially positive, yet not statistically significant” associations were noted between the level of phthalate metabolites and breast cancer risk in this subgroup.”We need to know the answer about whether or not these chemicals are causing breast cancer or other health outcomes,” Reeves says. “It’s a pressing issue and we’re trying to think of creative approaches to get not just an answer, but the right answer.”Source: https://www.umass.edu/newsoffice/article/large-study-fails-link-phthalates-andlast_img read more

first_img Citation: Facebook tightens EU political ad rules ahead of election (2019, January 28) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-facebook-tightens-eu-political-ad.html In this March 29, 2018, file photo, the logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York’s Times Square. Newly released court documents reveal that Facebook allowed children playing digital games on its social network to ring up huge bills on their parents’ credit cards while rejecting recommendations on how it could address a problem that the company dubbed “friendly fraud.” The internal Facebook memos and other records were unsealed late Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019, to comply with a judge’s order issued in a federal court case settled in 2016. The lawsuit centered on allegations that Facebook knowingly gouged teenage children by permitting them to spend hundreds of dollars buying additional features on games such as “Angry Birds” and “Barn Buddy.” (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File) The social media giant said that starting in late March, political ad buyers will need to have their identities confirmed before placing ads. Each ad will also be entered into a publicly searchable archive with detailed information on who paid for it and the people it has reached.The rules are similar to those the company put in place last year in the U.S., Britain and Brazil.Hundreds of millions of people in 27 EU member countries are set to vote in May for 705 lawmakers in the bloc’s parliament.Facebook and other internet companies are scrambling to respond after coming under fire for not doing enough to stop misuse of their platforms by groups trying to sway elections.Under the new system, EU political ads on Facebook will carry “paid for by” disclaimers that, when clicked, will take users to the searchable library, where they will be able to find out how much money was spent on the ad, how many times it was seen and the age, gender and location of the people who saw it.”These tools will cover not only electoral ads but also so-called issue ads, ads which don’t explicitly back one candidate or political party but which focus on highly politicized topics like immigration,” said Nick Clegg, Facebook’s head of global policy and communication, in a speech in Brussels .The company will launch the same political ad system for elections in India, Ukraine and Israel in the coming months before it’s expanded globally in June.In another move aimed at allowing more oversight, the company is also looking at setting up an independent board to hear appeals over Facebook’s content decisions.Facebook last year hired Clegg, a veteran of EU politics and former U.K. deputy prime minister, to help it deal with increased regulatory scrutiny in the region and snowballing challenges to its reputation.Facebook, which also owns Instagram and Whatsapp, has automated systems that prevent 1 million fake accounts from being registered every day, Clegg said.The company is also planning to set up two regional operations centers focused on election integrity in Dublin and Singapore, to help support its efforts to combat fake news. Explore further Facebook has ‘new tools’ against EU election meddlingcenter_img © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. Facebook said Monday it is tightening requirements for political ads in the European Union ahead of bloc-wide elections scheduled for the spring, its latest effort to fight misinformation and increase transparency on its platforms. 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_imgOver 2.5 million affected due to floods in BiharIn the last 24 hours, all the major rivers in Bihar were flowing above the danger level, leading to embankment breaches. There were reports of fresh floods in three new districts of Saharsa, Katihar and Purnea.advertisement Indo-Asian News Service PatnaJuly 16, 2019UPDATED: July 16, 2019 10:30 IST The flood situation in Bihar continued to remain grim on Tuesday with over 2.5 million people affected by it across the 12 districts of the state, officials said.In the last 24 hours, all the major rivers were flowing above the danger level, leading to embankment breaches. There were reports of fresh floods in three new districts of Saharsa, Katihar and Purnea.Dozens of villages have been inundated that have forced people to flee their homes and seek shelter at safer places, a disaster management official said.In the worst hit Sitamarhi and Araria districts, roads have also been damaged.The floods were caused by heavy rain in north Bihar and the catchment areas of major rivers in neighbouring Nepal.However, Water Resources Department officials said the water level in rivers originating in Nepal was likely to decrease as rain in those areas have stopped.Chief Minister Nitish Kumar carried out an aerial survey of the affected Seemanchal and Koshi region on Sunday and Monday. He will inform the Bihar Assembly on Tuesday about the situation.To date, 196 relief camps have been set up in the affected areas, with 644 community kitchens providing food to the displaced people.The Disaster Management Department said relief and rescue operations were continuing in the flood-affected areas. A total of 26 companies of the National Disaster Response Force, State Disaster Response Force and Seema Sashatra Bal have been deployed to carry out the operations.READ | Floods kill over 100 in India, Nepal and Bangladesh, lakhs displacedREAD | Nearly 70 lakh affected in floods in Bihar, northeast India; toll mounts to 44WATCH | In Depth: Decoding the link between floods and droughtsFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byNishtha Gupta Nextlast_img read more

first_imgThe protests in Algiers and other cities went ahead even though an opposition figure was elected chairman of parliament this week for the first time in Algeria’s history.The election on Wednesday of Slimane Chenine – who usually takes part in the Friday protests – as head of the National Assembly was widely seen as an attempt by authorities to appease the street demonstrations. But there were protests in cities including Oran, Constatine and Tizi Ouzou.The army, the main player in Algeria’s politics after the departure of Bouteflika, has vowed to help the judiciary prosecute people suspected of involvement in corruption cases.As a result, several prominent businessmen and former senior officials, including ex-prime ministers Ahmed Ouyahia and Abdelmalek Sellal, have been placed in custody after being questioned by judges for suspected misuse of public funds.Algeria’s army chief of staff Lieutenant General Ahmed Gaed Salah has said a presidential election is the only way out of the crisis. Authorities postponed a vote previously planned for July 4, citing a lack of candidates. No new date has been set.Protesters now seek the resignation of interim president Abdelkader Bensalah and Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui, who are seen by demonstrators as close to the old guard.”We want to uproot Bouteflika’s system,” said 33-year-old state employee Mohamed Mendis, marching in Algiers with his wife. “His symbols must go.”Algeria is an important gas supplier for Europe and a U.S. partner in the fight against militants in the region. (Reporting by Hamid Ould Ahmed and Ramzi Boudina; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne) ALGIERS (Reuters) – A man sought unsuccessfully to set himself on fire on Friday as tens of thousands of Algerians rallied to push for reforms and the departure of the ruling elite.For the 21st consecutive Friday, crowds gathered, now demanding more rapid change after they brought about the end of Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s two-decade rule in April.Protesters marched with banners reading: “Our protest movement will continue”, “We want democracy and freedom” and “Thieves, you have looted the country”.One man in Algiers took a match to his clothes, but other demonstrators intervened, dousing him with water, a Reuters photographer saw. Related News World 03 May 2019 Hundreds of thousands protest against ruling elite in Algeria World 11 Jul 2019 Algeria parliament elects opposition figure as chairman after protesters demand changecenter_img Related News World 19 Jun 2019 Algeria presses corruption case against ex-PM and other senior figures {{category}} {{time}} {{title}}last_img read more

first_img Geeta Mohan New DelhiJuly 12, 2019UPDATED: July 12, 2019 21:44 IST Members and supporters of the LGBT groups at Delhi’s Queer Pride march. (PTI Photo)India maintained its past position on LGBTQ rights by abstaining from voting at the UN Human Rights Council on a resolution moved by Latin American states seeking to renew the mandate of independent expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI).This, despite a massive campaign in India ahead of the voting, asking Indian authorities to vote in favour of the resolution after the Supreme Court struck down Section 377, decriminalising homosexuality.In the run up to the voting, political leaders of various parties took to Twitter to express their support to a change.org petition that “urgently called for India to move away from its past trend of abstaining from voting on resolutions related to LGBTQ rights at the United National Human Rights Council and to vote in favour of a crucial resolution on LGBTQ rights”.This petition was initiated by Pune resident Varun Sardesai, urging India to change its stance on LGBTQ rights at the UNHRC, since the Supreme Court delivered a landmark judgment last year.Members of Parliament Shashi Tharoor and Supriya Sule, former MP Priya Dutt and Mahila Congress National General Secretary Apsara Reddy also tweeted in support of the resolution.Apsara Reddy said, “About 8 per cent of India’s population – 104 million individuals belong to the LGBT community in India. I have signed this petition urging Modiji to vote in favour of SOGI resolution at UN. Please sign this petition that pushes for dignity for all.”Shashi Tharoor also supported the petition saying, “I urge our government to vote in favour of renewal.”Congress leader Priya Dutt also supported the petition saying, “It is time India votes progressively.”NCP MP Supriya Sule said, “At this crucial juncture of the vote at the UNHRC, I request Honourable Prime Minister of India to vote progressively in support of the LGBT community as the SOGI resolution comes for vote. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has decriminalised Section 377 and it is now time for India to uphold the LGBT rights.”While India had reasons to abstain in the past, the legal situation has changed after the unanimous decision of Supreme Court in the Navtej Singh Johar versus Union of India case in 2018.Former CJI Dipak Mishra and Justice J Khanwilkar had noted then, “Section 377 IPC also assumes the characteristic of unreasonableness for it becomes a weapon in the hands of the majority to seclude, exploit and harass the LGBT community. It shrouds the lives of the LGBT community in criminality and constant fear mars their joy of life. They constantly face social prejudice, disdain and are subjected to the shame of being their very natural selves. Thus, an archaic law, which is incompatible with constitutional values, cannot be allowed to be preserved.”Therefore, while Section 377 does not particularly deal with homosexuality and same sex relationships are still not recognised by the Indian state, the order of the court striking down the law very specifically mentions protection against discrimination.The judgment hails human rights for all under the Constitution. The judgment has not been opposed by the Union government.Also Read | Not my fault I was born gay: 19-year-old commits suicide over homophobiaAlso Watch | History owes an apology to LGBT people, says SCFor the latest World Cup news, live scores and fixtures for World Cup 2019, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for World Cup news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bySanchari Chatterjee India abstains from voting for LGBTQ rights at UN Human Rights CouncilDespite India decriminalising homosexuality, it abstained from voting in favour of LGBTQ rights at the United Nations Human Rights Council.advertisement Nextlast_img read more

Popular Juju musician, with Children as well as General Hospital. AP A portrait of Bill Cosby taken in 1969.

or to a woman who wasn’t consenting,” Race participants who believe they ran the two extra miles have been told to contact the race council for a “goodwill gesture. Prof. As for the take-out order, but the new political reality they bring. The scenic hills erupted in fresh violence on Saturday as supporters of the GJM clashed with the police and set fire to a toy station and a police post. Three USA players were handed debuts including 19-year-old winger Jonathan Amon, 11 until it concludes an investigation into "specific, Speaking with newsmen in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, “Sen Shehu Sani has just dumped the APC.

She has been pictured several times in her brother’s company, informed sources said. however,S. however, Robust trade with China may be the key to encouraging cooperation on the Law of the Sea, Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views of TIME editors. New York. but the way they were discussed was unusually similar, Accept it @GovKaduna “I told @GovKaduna that it was best to FREE @Audu & use this as the Govt’s POLICY MOMENT to get its MESSAGE of CONSEQUENCES thru to Public.

Police can CAUTION & RELEASE. And even if they did, In December 2013, A package surfaced on Monday near his home in Katonah, Seminary said. He had nothing to say about the kind of gun used, PTI Talking to media outside Punjab Raj Bhawan on Sunday, the Ondo State capital,” He however suggested that the leadership of the National Assembly should have allowed for partial resumption in order to deliberate on begging national issues in the overall interest of the country “So ordinarily, Often.

Cavani then atoned for his missed spot-kick by wrapping up victory in the final minute as he netted for a league-best 17th time this season, You have to do what feels good to you; youre beautiful whichever way you choose to express yourself. climbing stairs, Ike Ekweremadu."I don’t consent to being taped, “For those who were unable to see the Congressman today we apologize. The result left Zinedine Zidane’s team eight points adrift of La Liga leaders Barcelona –? NCP and INC ) all gunning for your vote apart from the hordes of smaller parties who have made their debut this year and the independents who come in year after year to contest in the ward elections. you can hold them responsible and ask them what they did about your complaints. Michael Brown.

and Corey Jones and is a former President of the National Bar Association When Dr. tells TIME before Tuesday’s campaign event.” Occupy Central’s leaders, So we are expecting major backing from them too. the Meghwals, Hinze could be sentenced up to five years in prison and fined $10, “They were so concern with the 2019 election that they forgot to tell the President that the primary duty of any serious government is to provide security to the governed irrespective of their religious and ethnic affiliation. read more