Two Agencies Designated as Full Status Departments

first_imgAmendments to the Public Services Act have been introduced that would designate full departmental status to two offices of government. Under the amendments, the office of Economic Development would become the Department of Economic Development and the office of Fisheries and Aquaculture would become the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture. “Both of these portfolios play important roles in the economy and development of our province,” said Finance Minister Michael Baker, who introduced the amendments today, Nov. 23, at the Nova Scotia legislature. “They are significant branches of government that warrant full status as departments.” The changes will take place immediately after the amended legislation is passed. -30-last_img

US jury tells JJ to pay 29 mn in talc cancer trial

first_imgCalifornia: A California jury on Wednesday ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $29 million to a woman who said that asbestos in the company’s talcum-powder-based products, including Johnson’s Baby Powder, caused her mesothelioma. The verdict, in California Superior Court in Oakland, marks the latest defeat for the healthcare conglomerate, which faces more than 13,000 talc-related lawsuits nationwide. J&J said it was disappointed with the verdict and would appeal, citing “serious procedural and evidentiary errors” in the course of the trial. The New Brunswick, New Jersey-based company denies that its talc causes cancer, saying numerous studies and tests by regulators worldwide have shown that its talc is safe and asbestos-free.last_img

MEA refuses to share details on extradition of Mallya Nirav Modi

first_imgNew Delhi: The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has refused to share details on the extradition of fugitive businessmen Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi, citing an RTI clause that bars disclosure of information which would “impede the process of prosecution of offenders”.In a reply to an RTI query, it said requests for extradition of Mallya and Modi have been sent to the UK government. “They are under the consideration of the concerned UK authorities. Copy of communications in this regard may not be provided under Section 8 (1) (h) of Right to Information (RTI) Act,” the ministry said in response to the application filed by this PTI journalist. Also Read – 2019 most peaceful festive season for J&K: Jitendra SinghThe section bars disclosure of “information which would impede the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders”. Embattled liquor tycoon Mallya is out on bail in the UK. The former Kingfisher Airlines’ boss is wanted in India to face charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to Rs 9,000 crore. India’s request to extradite Mallya was approved by UK home secretary in February this year. He has appealed against his extradition order, a hearing for which is now scheduled in the UK High Court on July 2. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroadFugitive diamontaire Nirav Modi is also contesting extradition proceedings in London. He has been denied bail for the third time in his extradition case to India to face charges in the Punjab National Bank fraud and money laundering case amounting to up to USD 2 billion and will continue to be lodged in a London jail described by his lawyers as “unliveable”. He has been lodged in the prison since his arrest in March this year. India’s investigating agencies — the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) — are looking into these high profile corruption cases involving Mallya and Modi. In a reply to another RTI query, the Ministry of External Affairs said 132 extradition requests were forwarded to foreign governments in the last four years. “Details may not be provided under Section 8 (1) (h) of RTI Act,” it said, when asked to provide details of offenders and copy of communications to the foreign governments.last_img read more

Terror attacks underscore need for nuclear disarmament UN official says

“We need to be aware of the fact that this situation could have been much worse than it has been – consider for example if weapons of mass destruction were used by these terrorists,” said Under-Secretary-General Jayantha Dhanapala in response to questions from journalists during a just recorded World Chronicle television programme. Produced by UN TV, the 30-minute roundtable show will be distributed to broadcasters next week. “We need to eliminate weapons of mass destruction because they could fall into the hands of terrorists,” Mr. Dhanapala said. “We don’t want to give terrorists more tools than they have at the moment.”The Under-Secretary-General also stressed the importance of international anti-terrorism treaties, which “set norms, and give us – civilized society – the moral right to act in the name of those laws.”Concerning a possible response to the devastating terror attacks, Mr. Dhanapala noted that the UN Charter did not rule out the use of force. “We’re not talking about an idealistic, utopian world where there are no weapons,” he said of the Charter’s vision, noting that Article 51 covers the right of countries to defend themselves, while Chapter VII deals with the right of defence in the collective interest of international peace and security. “Both of those obviously require weapons to be used.””Clearly, this is a matter which the Security Council ideally should look at,” he stressed. “If you can identify the person or persons responsible for this dastardly act of terrorism, then there will be opportunities for action to be taken.” read more

Ban profoundly disappointed over failed progress on South Sudan peace talks

The security situation in the world’s youngest country has deteriorated steadily over the past year since political in-fighting between the two leaders erupted in December 2013. The hostilities subsequently turned into a full-fledged conflict that has sent nearly 100,000 civilians fleeing to bases around the country managed by the UN Missions (UNMISS). Peace talks were being conducted under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD), which had also set a 5 March deadline for the conclusion of negotiations between the two parties. A statement issued this afternoon, the UN spokesperson office said that the Secretary-General has reached out to all relevant leaders over the past two days to urge the continuation of negotiations. “He urges both parties to refrain from any attempt to escalate the conflict and reiterates that there can be no military solution or alternative to a negotiated settlement. He appreciates the efforts and vital role played by IGAD and its special envoys in bringing peace to South Sudan. He supports IGAD’s intention to expand the mediation to include other partners,” the office said. The Secretary-General also recalled recent UN Security Council resolution 2206 (2015), and the Council’s intention to impose targeted sanctions on individuals and entities who fail to abide by the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement of 23 January 2014. The crisis in South Sudan has uprooted an estimated 1.9 million people and placed more than 7 million at risk of hunger and disease, a recent peace deal between the warring factions had fostered hope of a definitive end to the year-long conflict. According to the UN, in fact, the Organization’s bases across South Sudan are currently sheltering over 110,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) with an additional 1.5 million others displaced throughout the country and 500,000 outside the country. read more

WAR IN GOPPINGEN Home team beat Berlin

← Previous Story VIDEO: “Rune, you are CRAZY” Next Story → HUNGARY: PICK Szeged still on 100% after 10 matches Frisch Auf Goppingen and Fuchse Berlin have played extremely interesting match with a lot of rough fouls and three red cards, but at the end, domestic team had reason to celebrate 25:23.In the second match on Wednesday at DKB Bundesliga, SG Flensburg beat TBV Lemgo 29:21. dkb bundesliga

I was thinking of killing myself 24 hours a day Irish personalities

first_imgI’m driving along the motorway and I have an image of me just swerving the car into the wall, this just pops into my head.“There’s a slip road off, and you know there’s a barrier there which breaks up the junction, I just see the car just slam straight into that.”He adds that only a vision of his parents stopped him from swerving into the wall.Nikki HayesSpin 103.8 DJ Nikki Hayes tells Desmond of her attempt to end her own life.“I was 17 and I overdosed. I remember I was in the box room in my house. I went down to our medicine cupboard which was over the fridge and just took whatever I could. I know there was a lot of Paracetamol in there. I think there was some of my mother’s blood pressure tablets and I just, very quickly I think, in the space of maybe 20 minutes/ half an hour, took as much as I could but then I told my mum.I don’t know if it was to try to hurt her or what it was but it was definitely a cry for help.Hayes spent time in hospital after having her stomach pumped and made another attempt on her life in her college years.Brent PopeThe former rugby player turned analyst says that when he was younger, he would have panic attacks in the lead up to exams.He says that he always had low self-worth and would worry irrationally.“My Mother would always have a bath, in those days they’d leave the water in and she’d say ‘Look, go in and have a bath and try to relax.’For some reason as soon as I hit the water I would go into this panic attack state and I just remember sitting there sometimes for hours unbeknownst to my parents at the time.Maybe one or two o’clock in the morning, you know, blue, the water would be freezing cold, shaking there because I would think, and it’s quite emotional for me now actually, there’s no way I can pass these exams.Marian KeyesThe author of such books as Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married and Anybody Out There? says that her depression led to an attempt on her life.I was thinking of killing myself 24 hours a day, because I couldn’t sleep and I planned in incessantly.“There was a time in my life when I thought it was a person’s right to end their life if everything became too much and funnily enough, having gone through all of this, I would really prefer now if people were given help and kept safe so that they didn’t.”Time to Talk airs tonight at 7.30pm on TV3.Helplines:Samaritans 1850 60 90 90GPA counselling 1800 201 346Pieta House Head Office 01 6010000Read: Irish goalkeeper urges people to seek help with mental health issuesRead: New Donegal centre hopes to tackle mental health issues and rural isolation A GROUP OF high-profile Irish personalities have laid out their struggles with mental health in a new TV3 special which will air tonight.In ‘Time to Talk’, Cavan GAA star Alan O’Mara, rugby analyst Brent Pope, Spin 103.8 DJ Nikki Hayes and best-selling author Marian Keyes all talk about their own battles with depression.Alan O’MaraThe Cavan footballer tells presenter Sinead Desmond that in his own battle with depression left him questioning his own existence.“You start to question your existence, why am I here? Is this what my life is all about? Is this what I’m going to do? This voice is building in your head and this just kept snowballing up until Christmas with me until the day I was driving home.last_img read more

The beginners guide to using your smartphone

first_imgAndroid allows you to use different password methods such as pattern unlocking.The App StoreThe bread and butter of any smartphone, the app store is one of the most important features on your phone since it gives you access to a wide range of apps and services for you to download. Depending on the type of smartphone you have, you either use the App Store (iPhone/iPad), Google Play (Android), or Windows App+Games store (Windows Phone).Each store is broken up into different sections. You have editors choice (a selection of the most popular apps), top paid, free apps and top grossing (mostly consists of apps that use in-app purchases to make money).The homepage of the Google Play store.Regardless of which service you use, all of them require you to create an account using your email address and password. If you’re downloading paid apps, you will be required to provide your debit/credit card details to complete the purchase.Like all things, some apps are free, some cost you money and some are free to download but require you to pay for additional features.Most apps are free to download, but more of them require you to pay for extra content within the app.If you’ve already provided your card details, be careful if you hand your phone over to someone else as they could easily download paid apps or in-app purchases, which you won’t be able to do anything about. Windows Phone users have Kid Corner which prevents this from happening.Only download apps from trusted stores like Apple, Google Play and Windows Store. While there are other stores available, they don’t have the same level of security so you’re better off sticking to the traditional ones.If you’re wondering what apps you should download, we will have a list of the best ones for both beginners and advanced users.Switching between appsOn iPhone/iPad, pressing the home button twice brings up the list of activated apps. Either tap on one to open it or swipe upwards to turn it off.Android has a button dedicated to opening up and switching between apps, while on Windows Phone, if you hold down the back button, it brings up the five most recent apps you were using. Swiping up or across turns off the app.Switching between apps on Android.Setting main apps & foldersIf you’re using an iOS or Android device, you can place your most commonly used apps at the bottom of the screen. These apps will remain in the same fixed position on each screen meaning you can access them wherever you are.Depending on what phone or tablet you’re using, you can place between four to six apps. Android users can also place a folder there if they want to fit more apps.How folders look on iOSTo do this, press and hold down on the app you want to move and when it expands, move it down to the bottom. If you can’t place an app on the bottom, you must then remove one first before you can place it there.If you want to create a folder, press and hold down the app so you can move it, but instead,  place it on top of another app you want to pair it with. Doing this will create a folder which you can then name.There is no limit to the number of apps you place in a folder.An example of a folder on Android.The CameraOne of the handiest features of a smartphone is the ability to take photos and record videos whenever we please. It normally takes a moment or two for the camera to boot up, but the standard of cameras has improved so much, it’s the same or better than the average digital camera.Switching on the camera is relatively easy. You can either access it through the app, or access it from the lock screen.While there are numerous options to choose from, the two basic one are photos and video. Both are straightforward to use and will adjust itself if you hold your phone upright or sideways.If an object is blurry, tapping it on the screen will refocus the camera so it will appear properly. You can take a photo or record a video by either tapping the button on the screen, or by pressing the volume button on the side.Tapping on an object on a screen will refocus the camera so the object appears clearly.When you’ve taken your photo, it will usually appear at the corner of your screen. Tapping on it will bring it up for you to view. Here you can edit it, but if you want to email or share it, you will have to unlock your phone.When you access your photos or gallery app, you are given a number of ways to share. You can email it, post it on Twitter or Facebook, or attach it to a message. You also can select a number of them to share, although if you’re emailing them, remember that each provider has a different size limit so you may have to send more than one email.The list of share options on Android include email, Facebook, Twitter and Google Drive.Copy and pasting textIf you reading or writing something and you want to copy it, simply tap on a word and then drag the highlighted space across the words you want copied. When you’re finished, you will be given the option to cut, copy or paste. You can copy something and paste it on a different app (e.g: email to text).If you want to move your pointer around, just tap anywhere on the text to move it. Holding down on your pointer will bring up a magnifying glass which you can drag around. This is handy if you need to change a letter or if if you’re having problems positioning your pointer.Keep an eye on battery powerSmartphones are incredibly powerful and versatile devices, but because they’re doing so much, it drains the battery power much faster than a regular phone. On average, a regular charge will last a day if you use it every so often and less if you’re using it regularly.There are ways to make your battery last longer, but it’s better to keep an eye on your percentage since it will disappear faster then you would expecting.Read: 10 ways to improve your smartphone’s battery life >Read: Weird Wide Web: Google robots, a Santa tracker and a blood-related app > CHANGING FROM A normal phone to a smartphone can feel like quite a leap. One of its biggest strengths is the sheer range of things you can do on it, but the sheer amount of things you can do with it can make learning how to use it daunting.If you’re one of the lucky people who got their first smartphone today, or you know someone who’s just starting out, we put together a guide that will get you started. If you got a tablet, the same principles apply here.(Note: This is meant as a guide for people who aren’t familiar with the basics. For everyone else, treat this as a recap)Operating SystemDepending on the type of phone you get, you will be using one of three types of operating system: iOS (iPhone and iPad), Android (Samsung, HTC, Sony Xperia), or Windows Phone (Nokia Lumia).iOSThe focus on apps means that both the iPhone and iPad are more suitable towards beginners. There’s only one button, the home button, which brings you back to the main screen.Holding it down activates Siri, Apple’s personal assistant, which you can ask to complete actions such as setting reminders, playing music, and web search. Tapping it twice brings up the list of active apps, and tapping it three times allows you to add voiceover, invert colours or zoom in.iOS starts off with one main screen, but will create additional screens when you add more apps.The iPhone 5S (Image: AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)AndroidAndroid places an emphasis on widgets, app previews which save you the trouble of entering them directly. These are available for the majority of apps you can download.Android has three buttons located at the bottom of the screen. The back button which lets you return to any screen you were at previously, the home button that brings you back to the main screen and the apps button which brings up all active apps. There are five screens for you to fit both widgets and apps on.You can also add widgets to the lock screen. To do this, activate your phone but before you unlock it, swipe left to right to find a plus button. Tapping it allows you to add an email preview, calendar, readers and other widgets.Swiping the home button up will activate Google Now, which not only lets you search the web, but provides you with relevant information such as journey times, weathers, event information and reminders.The Sony Xperia Z1 (Image: AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)Windows PhoneThe draw of Windows Phone is its live tiles that update in real-time. Think of a cross between apps and widgets and you’ll have an idea of how they work.Like Android, Windows Phone has three buttons. the back button, the Start button which brings you to your home screen and search button which lets you search the web through Bing.Holding down the Start button brings up speech, which allows you to perform actions by talking.The Nokia Lumia 720 (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)GesturesAs all smartphones are controlled through touchscreen, meaning that all you need is are taps and swipes to work it. The main ones you need to know are:Single tap: Open up apps, menus, etc.Double tap: Allows you to zoom in when using a browser, viewing maps.Swipe left to right/vice versa: Unlock phone, switch between browser tabs, certain apps use it as a ‘return’ feature.Swipe top down: Brings down notifications screen alerting you to any messages, or missed calls. Can be accessed on lock screen too.Swipe bottom up: On the lock screen, it activates the camera. On iOS, swiping up from the middle brings up shortcuts. For Android, it activates Google Now.Pinch screen: Zoom in. Usually features when you’re on browsers, viewing maps. Doing the reverse allows you to zoom out.Press and hold: For your main screen, this allows you to move apps around, place them into folders and delete them.Connecting WiFiConnecting your smartphone up to a WiFi connection is practically the same as you would on your laptop. Found in settings, your phone will pick up any connections within range, and provided you have the right password for it.If you don’t have WiFi, you can access the web through 3G, although it’s recommended to have a WiFi connection when you’re downloading apps, music, videos and podcasts.Setting up your emailOne handy feature is you can keep up to date with any updates online. All that’s required for you to sign in is your email address, your password and the provider (Gmail, Hotmail, Outlook, AOL, Yahoo).If you don’t have one, it’s better to set up your email account on desktop first as the majority of apps you will download require it before you sign up. Gmail and Hotmail are two good providers to start with.The lock screenSimilar to ordinary phones, the lock screen alerts you to any missed calls or texts as well as any app notifications.iOS, Android and Windows Phone allow you to control what notifications you receive on your screen through settings, and you also have the option to remove previews for any text messages and emails you receive.Traditionally, you can lock your screen with a PIN code, but depending on the phone, you can add a more complex password (similar to your email account). If you’re an Android user, you can also use a pattern or face recognition password.last_img read more

Lunchtime Fix 9 things you need to know

first_img Source: Garda Press Office5. A BAKERY chain in Northern Ireland is in hot water after refusing to make a cake with a slogan supporting gay marriage. The Equality Commission is now pursuing Asher’s Bakery. Source: christianorguk/YouTube6. JAPAN is readying itself for one of its worst storms in years as typhoon Neoguri makes its way toward the southern Okinawa island chain. About half a million people have already taken shelter. Source: Associated Press/YouTube7. IS IT a bird? Yes, and a very big one at that. The largest flying bird EVER – yes, ever – has been discovered. It had a wingspan of 6.4m. And sharp teeth. A reconstruction image of the world’s largest ever flying bird Source: AP Photo/Bruce Museum, Liz Bradford8. IN amazing news today, scientists say they have taken a “major step forward” in predicting whether someone will get Alzheimer’s Disease, meaning treatment can be started on time and may stave off the condition. Source: Shutterstock9. Here’s one for the road, in case that news is all a bit dreary. Raju the Elephant was freed this week after 50 years in captivity. Here are his first moments of freedom. Source: New York Daily News/YouTubeRead the rest of the day’s news> WHAT’S THE STORY?1. FORMER executives of what was the Quinn Group have bought several companies linked to the family’s empire in a deal thought to be worth about €100 million. Source: Shutterstock2. IN the hopes it will help solve the housing crisis, the government has announced plans to “transform” 1,008 vacant properties into “high-quality family homes” over the next 12 months. Source: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland3. THE murder trial of Oscar Pistorius is winding down with both sides getting ready for closing arguments. Earlier today, the defence rested its case. The athlete outside court today. Source: Jerome Delay/PA Wire4. Adrian Folan. Adrian’s family are now asking for the media to respect their privacy.last_img read more

High level of consumption means little is left for investments

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The high rate of private consumption in Greece constitutes an obstacle to the strengthening of investments, according to a report published on Tuesday by Eurobank.In the report the lender’s analysts show that in 2013 the Greek rate of private consumption amounted to 71.21 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, while the average level among the 15 old members of the European Union amounted to 56.92 percent.“The significant spread between the Greek rate and that of the other countries in the EU-15 shows that the domestic resources that can finance investments in the Greek economy are much smaller in comparison with those in the other economies,” the report reads.It adds that the swelling of private consumption from 2001 to 2009 relied on the high growth rate of the economy, the low cost of borrowing, credit expansion and the accumulation of wealth at the time. “In 2009 the Greek economy had one of the highest per capita levels of private consumption among the EU-15, but in 2013 that dropped to second from bottom, only above that of Portugal,” it explained.“The high level of wealth, reflected in the high per capita private consumption, was significantly and abruptly lowered during the period of the great Greek depression, up to 2013,” the Eurobank analysts noted in their report.Source: Kathimerinilast_img read more

Workshop to provide tips to aid pastures

first_imgA June 12 workshop will provide ranchers and other landowners with techniques and practices to keep their pastures greener, healthier and more productive,Gary Fredricks, a Washington State University Clark County Extension livestock and forage specialist, will discuss methods, costs and equipment to renovate pastures.Fredricks also will cover reseeding techniques, grass and forage options, and grazing practices to improve pasture and water quality.Reference materials will be provided to workshop participants, who are invited to bring hay samples with them for help in evaluating their forage’s quality.The Small Acreage Program, co-sponsored by WSU Clark County Extension and Clark County Public Works’ Clean Water Program, will provide handouts, and answer landowners’ questions at the Pasture Management and Improvements workshop.The workshop is scheduled for 6 to 9 p.m. June 12 at the La Center Community Center, 1000 E. Fourth St. Cost is $10 per person, plus a $1.49 service fee, and class size is limited. Registration is available online at pasture2019.bpt.me.For more information, contact Teresa Koper at 564-397-5729, or by email at teresa.koper@wsu.edu.last_img read more

Trump Temperament Gives Senators Nuclear Jitters

first_imgWASHINGTON – Sens. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, and Bob Corker, R-Tennessee, led an unusual hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Tuesday examining whether the United States’ nuclear first-strike authority should be maintained solely by the president or shared with Congress.Chairman Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., left, talks with Ranking member Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., before the start of a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on North Korea on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)The hearing was part of a continuing effort by the Senate’s two highest-ranking members on the foreign affairs panel to curb the war-making authority of President Donald Trump, whom they consider mercurial and prone to rash decision-making. “I would like to tell my constituents and the American people we have a system in place that prevents an impulsive and irrational decision to use nuclear weapons,” Cardin said. “Unfortunately, I cannot make that assurance today.”Both Cardin and Corker have been critical of Trump’s conduct in global affairs. Cardin has previously said that Trump “lacks the temperament and judgment” to deal with the challenge posed by North Korea.Meanwhile, Corker has been engaged in a running war of words with Trump in recent weeks, at one point referring to the White House as an “adult day care center” where the staff were focused on containing the president rather than facilitating him.Quoting several of Trump’s recent aggressive statements towards North Korea, Cardin said that many people took the comments to mean that the president was willing to use nuclear weapons against North Korea. “That is frightening,” Cardin said.Cardin and Corker have led an effort in recent weeks to limit the ability of the executive branch to use military force without congressional oversight.Following the deaths of four U.S. soldiers in Niger last month, Corker and Cardin intensified scrutiny of the congressional authorizations that currently allow the president to use military force almost anywhere in the world against potential terrorist threats.The debate on nuclear weapons presents another area where some in Congress are seeking to impose more muscular oversight and executive accountability.The last formal review of nuclear command and control authority was in 1976, at the height of the Cold War, when the United States faced a nuclear-armed rival in the form of the Soviet Union.  At the time, authority for a nuclear first strike was given to the president because of the realistic possibility of a ballistic missile being allowed to reach the U.S. mainland within 30 minutes, leaving no time “for a special session of the Senate,” according to Cardin.But while the Soviet Union no longer exists, Cardin and Corker said that the nuclear protocols remained essentially unchanged and that the president had it within his power to unilaterally use the most powerful weapon in the U.S. arsenal.“Based on my understanding of the nuclear command and control protocol, there are no checks – no checks – on the president’s authority,” Cardin said. “The system as it is set up today provides the president with the sole and ultimate authority to use nuclear weapons.” While Cardin and Corker did not expand on their opinions of the current holder of the office, other lawmakers did.“We are concerned that the president is so unstable, is so volatile, has a decision-making process that is so quixotic, that he might order a nuclear-weapons strike that is wildly out of step with U.S. national security interests,” said Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut.Opinions on the president’s ability to use nuclear weapons vary widely, with some experts saying that nuclear weapons use should be governed by greater deliberation and others arguing for flexibility in the authority given to presidents.“The best reforms to the nuclear command-and-control system would be ones that maximized the opportunity for the human element to mitigate risks by maximizing time for deliberation and assessment,” said Peter Feaver, a professor of political science and public policy at Duke University. “My bottom line is simple: in the past, Congress has played a vital role in pushing the executive branch to strengthen the nuclear command-and-control system and the time may be ripe for another close look,” said Feaver, who was on the National Security Council under President George W. Bush.But according to retired Air Force Gen. C. Robert Kehler, a former commander of United States Strategic Command, the president’s ability to order a first strike without consultation is a crucial part of nuclear deterrence strategy.“To remain a credible deterrent tool, the U.S. nuclear force must present any would-be attacker with little confidence of success and the certainty of an assured response against his highest-value targets,” Kehler told the Senate panel.“Despite significant differences from the Cold War, the ultimate paradox of the nuclear age is still with us – to prevent the use of nuclear weapons, the U.S. must remain prepared to use them,” Kehler said.last_img read more

PS4 expected to be 50 cheaper than Xbox One

first_imgWith both next-gen consoles announced by Sony and Microsoft, talk now inevitably turns to how much we will be expected to pay for the PS4 and Xbox One. The only evidence we have so far of pricing is what retailers choose to list as a pre-order price. In the case of the Xbox One, that’s $770 according to Amazon Germany.I’ve said before that with both consoles expected to launch at roughly the same time later this year, price is going to be a key selling point. Whoever comes in lower has an automatic advantage, and now well-known Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Patcher has thrown his hat into the ring and stated the PS4 is going to be the cheaper machine.Patcher predicts that the PS4 will sell for $349 where as the Xbox One will be a $399 console. The reason for the price difference comes down to the bill of materials, which he estimates as $275 for the PS4 and $325 for the Xbox One. It therefore makes sense the Xbox One should cost more, but it’s not that simple.Historically, both Microsoft and Sony have sold new consoles at a loss in order to hit a price point and build up the user base quickly. Profit comes later as the hardware gets cheaper and from ongoing sales of games, services, and accessories. With the hardware inside both consoles being much cheaper this coming generation, it’s actually easier for both companies to make a profit on the hardware, but that’s no guarantee they will.Sony could choose to sell the PS4 at cost, meaning a $274.99 launch price is possible. Microsoft on the other hand may sell at a loss to match that, or could subsidize the console with Xbox Live subscriptions. The Xbox One is going to need an Internet connection in order to play new and used games, so doing a deal that sees it offered cheaper with a broadband/Live Gold subscription makes sense.Whatever the final price ends up being, if the PS4’s bill of materials really is $50 cheaper than the Xbox One, Sony has the upper hand when it comes to pricing and profitability. And if the PS4 turns out to be a more powerful machine too, Sony could hit the ground running come launch day.last_img read more

Study suggests income inequality pushes people to take greater risks

first_img(Phys.org)—A trio of researchers, two with the University of North Carolina and the other with the University of Kentucky, has conducted two kinds of experiments with results suggesting that income inequality in a society can lead those on the bottom to take more risks in hopes of increasing their position. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Keith Payne, Jason Hannay and Jazmin Brown-Iannuzz describe their experiments and why they believe their results indicate that rising inequality in the world today could lead to a range of poor outcomes. Credit: CC0 Public Domain © 2017 Phys.org Explore further Citation: Study suggests income inequality pushes people to take greater risks (2017, April 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-04-income-inequality-people-greater.html More information: B. Keith Payne et al. Economic inequality increases risk taking, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2017). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1616453114AbstractRising income inequality is a global trend. Increased income inequality has been associated with higher rates of crime, greater consumer debt, and poorer health outcomes. The mechanisms linking inequality to poor outcomes among individuals are poorly understood. This research tested a behavioral account linking inequality to individual decision making. In three experiments (n = 811), we found that higher inequality in the outcomes of an economic game led participants to take greater risks to try to achieve higher outcomes. This effect of unequal distributions on risk taking was driven by upward social comparisons. Next, we estimated economic risk taking in daily life using large-scale data from internet searches. Risk taking was higher in states with greater income inequality, an effect driven by inequality at the upper end of the income distribution. Results suggest that inequality may promote poor outcomes, in part, by increasing risky behavior.center_img It is no secret that those on the lower end of the economic spectrum would like to move higher, nor is it a secret that the income inequality gap is growing in many countries across the globe. To learn more about the possible real-world impact of this change the researchers carried out two types of experiments designed to learn more about the behavior of those living below the standard of those at the top.The first type of experiment consisted of asking online volunteers to play a gambling game. Players were shown what they believed to be the average results of previous players—half of the volunteers were told that the best players earned significantly more than other players, while the other half were told the winnings gap was relatively small. Each of the volunteers was then asked how much they felt they needed to win to feel like they had done well and then were given a chance to play by placing bets where they could win real-world money. The betting options were arranged such that the greater the risk, the bigger the potential payoff.In studying how the volunteers performed, the researchers found that those who were told that prior players had won a lot more than other players tended to place riskier bets, hopefully leading to bigger rewards—they also generally expressed a higher need to win than the other players.To learn more about real-world conditions, the researchers studied Google search string data regarding risky behavior and financial gain, such as people searching for information about lottery winning, or other ways to win money. They found that people who lived in states where the income gap was the highest tended to conduct many more such searches.The researchers conclude by suggesting that exposure to high-income lifestyles entices lower-income people to engage in risky behavior in attempting to lift themselves higher. Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 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. Study results suggest people are less cooperative in unequal societies when wealth inequality is evidentlast_img read more

World mourns Nelson Mandela expresident of South Africa who dies at 95

first_imgBy 1952, Mandela had become president of the ANC’s largest branch, in the Transvaal. That same year, he and Tambo opened the only firm of black lawyers in South Africa. They provided free or low-cost legal counsel to blacks.Mandela was arrested for the first time in 1952 while organizing an ANC defiance campaign. A court decreed that he could not legally be in the presence of more than two people at a time. Such repression drove activists like Mandela underground; in 1954, Mandela devised what he called the “M Plan” of small street cells to carry out nonviolent defiance of apartheid.In 1955, the year he separated from Evelyn, Mandela met Winnie Madikizela, a young social worker. A year later, he and 155 others were charged with treason. They originally were jailed but were released as the case dragged on. It ended in 1961 with verdicts of not guilty.Mandela and Madikizela married in 1958, a union that became part and parcel of the liberation struggle. His new wife became an activist in her own right.As the ANC stepping up its activism, so did a related group, the Pan African Congress. In what would emerge as a turning point in the black liberation struggle, the PAC organized a protest on March 21, 1960, in the black township called Sharpeville.As demonstrators marched to decry the laws that required blacks to carry a pass to enter cities or other white areas, police opened fire, killing 69 people.The apartheid state clamped down with a state of emergency during which several leading figures were jailed, including Mandela.In 1961, Mandela and others in the ANC formed an armed wing, called Umkonto we Sizwe, or Spear of the Nation. Popularly known as “MK,” the wing carried out a sporadic underground sabotage and guerrilla campaign.In 1962, just after returning from MK fundraising travels across Africa, Mandela was arrested and sentenced to five years in prison for incitement and illegally departing the country.The next year, police arrested almost the entire leadership of MK. Along with Mandela, they were charged with treason, but when the case went to trial, the charges were changed to sabotage and conspiracy. They were convicted and expected to be hanged.At sentencing, in the last public statement that Mandela would utter until 1990, he said: “During my lifetime, I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have described the cherished ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”Instead of death, Judge Quartus de Wet sentenced him to Robben Island prison, where he would spend 18 of his 27 years of imprisonment by the apartheid regime, confined to a tiny cell and forced to do hard labor in the prison quarry.During Mandela’s years in prison, South Africa’s townships became increasingly restive, leading to the 1976 Soweto uprising, in which police killed several schoolchildren. State repression deepened. In 1977, anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko, who helped launch the Black Consciousness movement, was beaten to death in police custody. No related posts. The Afrikaners, descendants of 17th century Dutch and French settlers, were especially traumatized by the transition to black rule, and their control of the military posed a potential threat to the young democracy in the early years of Mandela’s presidency.Though institutional policies were put in place to deal with white fears — such as a sunset clause allowing white civil servants and soldiers to stay in their jobs as long as they wanted — Mandela also used his powers of persuasion to disarm opponents, defuse threats and charm detractors.Under Mandela’s leadership, South Africa slowly began eradicating racism from its legal canon, governmental institutions and school textbooks. A new Constitutional Court was inaugurated in 1995 as the highest court in the land. Among its early rulings was the abolition of the death penalty.In 1996, parliament approved a new national constitution, including a bill of rights guaranteeing protections most South Africans had never imagined. For instance, South Africa was the first nation in the world to enshrine the protection of the rights of gays in its constitution.That same year, Mandela launched the country’s Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, led by Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. Rather than Nuremburg-style trials, Mandela’s government fostered truth-telling and amnesty. On one hand, that meant killers who confessed would not be prosecuted. On the other hand, it helped ensure that the seeds of more racial hatred would not be planted.Mandela sought to bridge the lingering divides between blacks and whites in other ways, too. When South Africa hosted the 1995 Rugby World Cup, he encouraged blacks to support the much-hated Springboks, the national rugby team that was widely seen by blacks as a totem of white rule.When the Springboks won a riveting final over New Zealand, Mandela wore a Springbok shirt and presented the trophy to captain Francois Pienaar. The gesture was widely viewed as a major step toward racial reconciliation.For all his strengths and bottomless energy, Mandela faced a seemingly impossible task as president: In a nation where millions of people still lived in shacks, where non-whites had been purposefully impoverished and undereducated, he had to meet the expectations and hopes of the teeming masses who had propelled him to high office.Today, millions of South Africans still live in deep poverty, without running water or electricity. Whites still largely control the economy. Blacks speak openly about the “economic apartheid” in the country.Mandela understood that he would perhaps never see the South Africa he had envisioned the day he stepped out of prison, but he sought until his last days to achieve that vision.“When I walked out of prison, that was my mission, to liberate the oppressed and oppressor both,” Mandela wrote on the last page of his memoir, “A Long Walk to Freedom.” “The truth is that we are not yet free. . . . We have not taken the final step of our journey, but the first step on a longer and even more difficult road. For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was born July 18, 1918, in the village of Mvezo in Transkei, a region bordering the Indian Ocean. His mother was Nosekeni Fanny, the third of four wives of Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa, who was chief of Mvezo and counselor to two successive Xhosa kings.Mandela’s tribal name, Rolihlahla, carried the colloquial meaning “troublemaker” — perhaps a portent, he mused later. He grew up amid the deeply traditional customs, rituals and taboos of the Xhosas, including communication with ancestors.Shortly after his birth, his family was plunged into poverty when a British colonial magistrate deposed his chiefly father. The family moved to Qunu, a village where Mandela maintained a home until the day he died.When Mandela was 9, he was sent, upon his deceased father’s instructions, to live at the Great Place at Mqhekezweni, the seat of the regent of the Thembu people. There, among tribal aristocracy, he was groomed for leadership.He also was steeped in the severities of a Methodist mission education and discipline. He attended a Methodist mission boarding school called Clarkesbury in the town of Engcobo and later Healdtown, a Wesleyan school at Fort Beaufort.At 21 and wearing his first suit, Mandela entered the University College of Fort Hare, the region’s only institution of higher education for Africans. At Fort Hare, Mandela met Oliver Tambo, who would become the leader of the ANC, and other young activists. Mandela studied law at Fort Hare but was expelled because of his activism.To escape a marriage being arranged for him, he sneaked off to Johannesburg, where he encountered Walter Sisulu, who would become his comrade, confidante, alter ego and fellow prisoner at Robben Island. At first, Mandela worked as a mine policeman. He took correspondence courses from the University of South Africa. And with Sisulu’s recommendation smoothing the way, he clerked in a liberal white law firm. He completed his bachelor’s degree in 1942 and enrolled the following year to study law at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.In 1943, Mandela joined the ANC, which exposed him to a multi-racial group of liberation theorists, Communists and Africanists who would help shape his political and social views. Five years later, formal apartheid began in South Africa; the National Party came to power and imposed its racist theories on separate development.“I had no epiphany, no singular revelation, no moment of truth, but a steady accumulation of a thousand slights, a thousand indignities, a thousand unremembered moments, produced in me an anger, a rebelliousness, a desire to fight the system that imprisoned my people,” Mandela wrote in his memoir.Throughout the 1940s and early 1950s, Mandela organized and agitated on behalf of the ANC. He held positions in the ANC’s youth wing and in the main organization. Inspired by Mahatma Gandhi’s teachings, Mandela was initially committed to nonviolent resistance regime. He worked in concert with the Natal Indian Congress, an anti-racism group that Gandhi had helped found.Mandela practiced law and raised two sons and a daughter with his first wife, Evelyn Ntoko Mase, whom he married in 1944. Another daughter died in infancy. Nelson Mandela, center, listens to the U.S. national anthem on Sept. 23, 1998 at the Capitol Rotunda in Washington with President Bill Clinton, right, and House Speaker Newt Gingrich, before a ceremony to award a Congressional Gold Medal to Mandela. Washington Post photo by Robert A. Reeder In the 1980s, as the state employed a series of states of emergency against opponents, the international campaign to change South Africa gathered steam. Economic sanctions were imposed and various boycotts were launched. At the center of the campaign was an effort to free Mandela.In 1982, Mandela was transferred to the Pollsmoor Prison on the mainland near Cape Town. A few years later, a series of secret talks began between Mandela and President P.W. Botha, who offered to release Mandela if he renounced violence. Mandela would not.At the same time, Afrikaners of the National Party began tentative talks with the ANC in exile, led by Tambo, Mandela’s old law partner. Those talks were the precursors to Mandela’s release in 1990 and the unbanning of anti-apartheid organizations.Botha’s successor, de Klerk, and the National Party of 1990 thought they could free Mandela and still negotiate reforms that would leave the nation’s white minority with a veto power over black rule. But Mandela’s walk to freedom in 1990 set in motion a chain of events that would ultimately lead to free and fair elections and majority rule four years later.Mandela suffered some setbacks to his image as president. He tolerated inept cabinet members who had been loyal comrades in the anti-apartheid struggle. Some blacks believed he spent too much time seeking reconciliation with whites. Others resented his penchant for granting an audience to just about any kind of visiting celebrity, from the Spice Girls to Louis Farrakhan.In 1998, Mandela married Graca Simbine Machel, the widow of Mozambican president Samora Machel. Besides Machel, survivors include a daughter from his first marriage, Makaziwe; two children from his second marriage, Zindzi and Zenani; and grandchildren.In retirement, Mandela did not recede from the public eye. In 2008, a frail Mandela attended a star-studded London concert to celebrate his 90th birthday. He struggled to walk to the podium. But then, in a strong voice, flashing his trademark smile, he urged everyone to support his campaign against global poverty and oppression.On his 93rd birthday, an estimated 12 million South African students sang “Happy Birthday” to him in a nationwide sing-a-long.Lynne Duke, a former Washington Post reporter, died in April 2013.© 2013, The Washington Post Facebook Comments Nelson Mandela, center, at a 1994 rally in Natal, South Africa. Washington Post photo by Michael Williamson center_img Nelson Mandela, the former political prisoner who became the first president of a post-apartheid South Africa and whose heroic life and towering moral stature made him one of history’s most influential statesmen, died Dec. 5, the government announced. He was 95.The death was announced in a televised address by President Jacob Zuma, who added, “we’ve lost our greatest son.” No cause was provided.To a country torn apart by racial divisions, Mandela became its most potent symbol of national unity, using the power of forgiveness and reconciliation to heal deep-rooted wounds and usher in a new era of peace after decades of conflict between blacks and whites. To a continent rife with leaders who cling to power for life, Mandela became a role model for democracy, stepping down from the presidency after one term and holding out the promise of a new Africa.And to a world roiled by war, poverty and oppression, Mandela became its conscience, fighting to overcome some of its most vexing problems. He was a Nobel Peace Prize laureate who spent 27 years in prison as part of his lifelong struggle against racial oppression.Throughout this moral and political fight, Mandela evoked a steely resolve, discipline and quiet dignity, coupled with a trademark big, charismatic smile. He ultimately carried them into office as South Africa’s first democratically elected and black president.His victory capped decades of epic struggle by the African National Congress and other liberation groups against South Africa’s brutal white rulers, first under British colonialism and then under a white-run system called “apartheid,” or racial separation. On the historic day of his inauguration — May 10, 1994 — Mandela stood at the podium near South Africa’s last apartheid-era president, F.W. de Klerk. A year earlier, they shared the Nobel Prize for what the Nobel committee called “their work for the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime, and for laying the foundations for a new, democratic South Africa.”“We have, at last, achieved our political emancipation,” Mandela, then 75, declared as the new president. “Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another … the sun shall never set on so glorious a human achievement.”Only a few years before, the 20th century’s most celebrated political prisoner had been dubbed a “terrorist” by the conservative governments in the United States and Britain under Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, respectively.In the decades following Mandela’s release from prison in 1990, many South Africans of all races referred to him reverentially as Madiba, his Xhosa clan name. Countless others called him Tata, which means father in the Xhosa language.For all his achievements, Mandela will also be remembered as slow to react to the HIV/AIDS epidemic that began sweeping South Africa on his watch. It was not until 1998, four years into his presidency, that he directly addressed the South African public about the disease. Later, he would acknowledge that he did not recognize the severity of the epidemic.After he left office in 1999, Mandela devoted substantial energy and resources, both personally and through his Nelson Mandela Foundation, to raising awareness of the epidemic. In 2002, he publicly criticized his successor, Thabo Mbeki, for delays in implementing a plan to fight HIV/AIDS.In 2005, the epidemic hit home. A somber Mandela announced the death of his son, Makatho Mandela, 54, who had AIDS.Mandela’s years as president also were characterized by the public and political drama of his estrangement from his wife, Winnie Mandela. Separated in 1992, the pair divorced in 1996 after court proceedings in which the usually private Mandela described himself in open court as “the loneliest man.”At the same time, he had to address the insecurities and animosities of the white minority that had lost political power but still controlled South Africa’s economy, military and bureaucracy. Among the U.S. lawmakers attending a Sept. 23, 1998 ceremony in Washington to honor Nelson Mandela, left, was Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., right. Behind Thurmond is Rep. Amo Houghton, R-N.Y. Washington Post photo by Dudley M. Brooks Nelson Mandela, right, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu in Cape Town, South Africa, celebrate Mandela’s 1994 presidential victory. Washington Post photo by Dudley Brookslast_img read more

Forecast labour shortage to affect tourism

first_imgThe labour requirements of future building and mining operations may see skilled workers poached from other service sectors, impacting the Australian tourism industry, the Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) said.Findings from the National Resources Sector Employment Taskforce Report found that by 2015 the resources sector could be short of 36,000 skilled tradespeople.“[I]f these workers are recruited from other sectors there will be skills shortages in those industries”, the report said.ATEC Managing Director Matthew Hingerty recalled that in the most recent mining surge, the tourism industry felt the pinch.”At the height of the last boom it was not unknown for every tourism and hospitality business in towns in Queensland and Western Australia to be advertising for staff,” Mr Hingerty said. “One of the major shortages during the last boom at remote resorts was of refrigeration mechanics,” Mr Hingerty said.Mr Hingerty added that while much has been made of the mining sector’s export success in the “muddied election debate”, the less controversial tourism industry is vital to Australia’s exports, generating AUD25 billion in 2009. <a href=”http://www.etbtravelnews.global/click/29400/” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://adsvr.travelads.biz/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=10&amp;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> Source = e-Travel Blackboard: G.Alast_img read more

Tiger discounts shares to raise funds

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J As the carrier recovers from a six week grounding in Australia, Tiger Airways has released plans to raise up to S$158.6 million through a rights issue to “to strengthen its balance sheet by increasing equity”.In a statement the airline said up to 273,423,930 new ordinary shares would be available to current shareholders to purchase at a 39 percent discounted price of S$0.58 for each rights share.The discounted price is based on its last traded price on 25 August 2011 of S$0.955 per share. “The company is undertaking the rights issue to strengthen its balance sheet by increasing equity, therefore reducing leverage and providing the company with financial flexibility to fund its expansion plans,” the statement read.Earlier this month the carrier reported an operating loss of up to S$23.3 million for the quarter ending 30 June this year compared to the S$10.6 million profits made during the corresponding period last year. The loss was linked to the carrier’s six week grounding in Australia which commenced early July and was carried out by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) that deemed the carrier too dangerous to fly. The injunction against the airline’s Australian operations was lifted earlier this month. last_img read more

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