TOUCH SA vs VICTORIA- THE BORDER CHALLENGE

first_imgVIC vs SA- OPEN BORDER CHALLENGE 3rd September: Touch SA vs Victoria Touch- `2005 Border Challenge’. In the drizzling rain the touch stars of long standing rival states South Australia and Victoria took to the fields last weekend to battle to be the 2005 Border Challenge Champions…. Last weekends Border Challenge saw South Australia and Victoria compete in the Men’s open, Women’s Open and Mixed Open divisions, vying for State supremacy as well as selection for the Crusaders teams (comprising Victoria, South Australia & Tasmania) to compete in the National Touch League in Coffs Harbour in March 2006. This year the 2005 Border Challenge was held in Mildura. The Border Challenge is a great opportunity to take elite level touch to the regional areas, and this weekend displayed the very best South Australia and Victoria has to offer. The games were held at the Mildura Senior College and greatly supported by representatives of the Mallee Touch Association in particular Luke Thornton with regard to facilities and field preparation. It was excellent to see members of the Mildura Touch Association come out and play a demonstration mixed game to show case the local talent. The stars from both South Australia and Victoria put on a display of tenacious defense, hot stepping attacking action, and of course, the games were played in the sportsmanlike manner one has come to expect in our sport. Through the miserable rain South Australia came out strong winning all three of the Men’s Open games and two games to one in the Women’s Open, while Victoria had a clean sweep in the Mixed Open division. As expected it was a tight encounter with most games only separated by one or two scores. Men’s Open South Australia (6) def Victoria (5) South Australia (5) def Victoria (4) South Australia (5) def Victoria (2) * 2005 Divisional Champions – South Australia Women’s Open South Australia (4) def Victoria (3) South Australia (3) def Victoria (2) Victoria (2) def South Australia (1) * 2005 Divisional Champions – South Australia Mixed Open Victoria (3) def South Australia (2) Victoria (5) def South Australia (3) Victoria (6) def South Australia (5) * 2005 Divisional Champions – Victoria ** 2005 Border Challenge Overall State Champions – South Australia ** The awesome display of talent made the task of choosing a `Player of the Series’ from each division very difficult. The following players were awarded `Player of the Series’ – Men’s Open – Colm Maguire (South Australia) Women’s Open – Sharon Gray (South Australia) Sharon Lai (Victoria) Mixed Open – Richard Morunga (Victoria) Congratulations to all the players that took part and a big thank you to Luke Thornton for everything he did in preparation for the 2005 Border Challenge. A special thank you to the following referee’s who were selected to represent at the 2005 Border Challenge Dave Ludlow, Jo Mitchell, Sean Judge, Chris Denison-Smith, Greg Frost, Indra Garner, Leigh Bryant, Miles Davine, Mike Gaskin, Stewart Freeman.last_img

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10 months agoTottenham attacker Son: Only bad luck stopping trophy push

first_imgTottenham attacker Son: Only bad luck stopping trophy pushby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham attacker Heung-Min Son says they deserve to win a trophy this season.The South Korean – who has now scored 10 goals in his last 10 games – believes all Tottenham need is a change in fortune to land their first silverware under Mauricio Pochettino.”We are just a bit unlucky for me, to be honest,” he said. “We are close all the time.”People are thinking ‘ahhh it’s Spurs’, but we believe, always this team believe in the title, but sometimes you just have to have luck, with a long season.”We can win, we deserve to win. The players deserve to win something.”Of course the pressure is going to be big [to win the title] but we have to just enjoy and bring positive energy, this is the most important.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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a month agoCelta Vigo midfielder Denis Suarez: Man City contract set up my family

first_imgCelta Vigo midfielder Denis Suarez: Man City contract set up my familyby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveCelta Vigo midfielder Denis Suarez insists he enjoyed his time at Manchester City.Denis has been discussing his time in England.“At first it was fine. I got there and I went on pre-season with the first team to the United States, I debuted with the first team in the first round of cup when I was 17 years old and sportingly, I was doing well,” Suárez said.“Life was a little different, it cost my parents more because they didn’t speak English and they had trouble learning it.“The second year was a little long, also because I had been injured, and finally I decided to go to Barcelona.”The now 25-year-old also explained why he joined City in the first place.“My first decision was to stay here in the first team, but Celta did not contemplate that option.“Then I went to Manchester City because it was an important step for me, it was an important investment for the club, who at that time needed money. The contract [offered to me] at that time had my family’s life was fixed.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Yellow Pages ends lockout of Quebec sales employees after deal ratified

first_imgMONTREAL — Yellow Pages Ltd. says its lockout of sales representatives in the province of Quebec has been lifted after they ratified a new three-year collective agreement.The Montreal-based publisher of digital and paper-based advertising announced in mid-September that it was locking out about 130 of its unionized employees after the two sides failed to reach a labour agreement. It announced Sunday that the workers were scheduled to return to work immediately but neither the company nor the union released details about the terms of the new contract.The Federation des travailleurs du Quebec (FTQ) announced separately that the deal was ratified by 65 per cent of the members who voted Sunday in Laval, Que.The union executive had recommended ratification of the deal due to the company’s intransigence and its financial difficulties.Earlier this month, Yellow Pages announced it had achieved a $27.1-million profit for the third quarter ended Sept. 30, due to cost-cutting including workforce reductions, asset sales and a $18.3-million reversal in income tax provisions. Revenue for the three months was down 26 per cent from the third quarter of 2017, to $130.1 million from $175.7 million. Companies in this story: (TSX:Y)The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Womens Soccer Ohio State scores eight goals in win over Morehead State

After coming off of a cancelled home-opening match against Duquesne last Sunday, Ohio State regained momentum after its win over No. 5 Florida by gaining an 8-0 victory against Morehead State.Ohio State (2-2) tied for the third-most goals in one single game in school history. Freshmen forward Emaly Vatne scored three of the eight goals in Thursday night’s win, recording the 15th hat trick in Ohio State history, scoring in the 41st, 68th and 73rd minutes against Morehead State. Vatne said she is most proud of her team’s professionalism on the field tonight. “We approached this game with a really good attitude,” Vatne said. “We didn’t let up in one moment of the game, so I think that’s something we should really be proud of.”In the 22nd minute, freshmen defender/midfielder Talani Barnett notched a goal from eight yards inside the right post, giving Ohio State the early lead. A minute later, freshmen forward Kayla Fischer found success by scoring a goal in the first half, recording her third goal of the year. Junior midfielder Alyssa Baumbick also picked up two goals, resulting in her first pair of goals of the season.   In the 57th minute, sophomore forward Marissa Birzon, crossed over from the left wing to tally Ohio State’s fifth goal of the night.     Vatne said, as a group, Ohio State really found a rhythm and were able to capitalize on the moments when they got the opportunity to play. Head coach Lori Walker-Hock spoke about the importance of gaining confidence looking ahead to conference play in a couple of weeks. Walker-Hock also said the best part of this kind of a game is being able to get a lot of people on the field and gaining some experience. “That’s where a game like this really benefits us is getting that experience for some of our young players and clearly our young players connected pretty good tonight,” Walker-Hock said. The Buckeyes will resume action this Sunday as they take on Notre Dame at 1 p.m at Alumni Stadium. read more

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AST Rescues Snowmachiner On Turnagain Pass

first_imgTharp was then taken to Providence Hospital in Anchorage for non-life threatening injuries. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska State Troopers responded to an injured snowmachiner in the area of Turnagain Pass, on April 23. According to the Troopers, Life Med Alaska was contacted and responded to the area, but couldn’t reach the injured snowmachiner, Blake Tharp, 35, of Anchorage.center_img A snowmachine was used to reach Tharp, and transport him to the helicopter.last_img

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Borough Mayor Proposes Funding Cuts To Schools And Tourism Industry

first_imgThe borough assembly will hold a special meeting on both items at 6 p.m., on July 6. The first line-item veto would cut more than $650,000 in education funding to the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District. This amount was added to the budget by the assembly at its July 6th meeting when the budget was passed. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor introduced two line-item veto items this afternoon, for the agenda at this evenings borough assembly meeting, aimed at cutting funding towards both the school district and the tourism and marketing industry. The mayor is now proposing cutting back to his original proposed funding amount of $100,000. Mayor  Pierce: “We are not in a position to spend more money from the general fund, fund balance without assured additional revenue.”center_img Both items failed to obtain the required 6-3 votes in order to make it on this evenings agenda, citing a lack of adequate time to inform the public. Now, the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly will be holding a special hearing on the two items on July 6. The second line-item veto targeted by Mayor Pierce was funding towards  the Kenai Peninsula Tourism and Marketing Council. The assembly approved to fund the organization $306,000 in the budget that was approved two weeks ago.last_img read more

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In Our Communities

first_imgCommunity leaders were on the inaugural Contour Airlines flight Feb. 12 from Waynesville-St. Robert Regional Airport at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., to St. Louis. The Sustainable Ozarks Partnership said the daily jet service will support military mission and boost tourism….The new director of veterans services in Ohio is prioritizing transition readiness, so veterans are ready for new jobs “the moment they step out of uniform,” according to the Dayton Daily News. Deborah Ashenhurst said helping with employment will also reduce homelessness, drug abuse, mental health problems and suicide among the state’s 800,000 military veterans….Buckley Air Force Base pumped almost $1 billion into the Aurora, Colo., community last year, an increase over the year before. The base supports about 4,300 jobs, according to The Sentinel….Bids are due March 11 for a “transit-oriented development” study at a train station site near the south gate of Aberdeen Proving Ground. The Office of Economic Adjustment is funding the project, according to the RFP from Harford County, Md.Photo by Sustainable Ozarks Partnership ADC AUTHORlast_img read more

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Creator of meldonium ‘quite sure’ other top athletes using it

first_imgThe Latvian creator of banned drug meldonium said on 10 March that he was quite sure other top athletes are – and should – use it. Ivars Kalvins expressed sadness over the banning of the drug that has cast a pall over the career of tennis star Maria Sharapova, describing it as one of the most significant accomplishments of the tiny nations scientists.The five-time grand slam champion has revealed she tested positive in January for the drug meldonium, which its Latvian inventor once said had been used to toughen up Soviet troops fighting at high altitudes three decades ago. Kalvins also claimed that Sharapova is not alone in taking the drug, which was only added to the banned list on 1 January 2016. Kalvins said: I am quite sure that a lot of athletes at the top level are using mildronate [meldonium] – and they should use mildronate to protect themselves in case of overloading. Because if there is overloading then the cardio muscle, cells will die out because [of the] lack of oxygen there. In the case of using mildronate these cells will survive. And this is like an insurance, insurance that sportsman will not die on the field of their sport event.Kalvins invented the drug in mid-1970s when Latvia was still a Soviet republic. He told local newspaper Diena in 2009 that it had been used to boost troops fighting stamina in the 1980s – at that time Soviet forces were battling insurgents in Afghanistan. Meldonium, which is available cheaply over the counter without a prescription in the Baltic states and Sharapovas native Russia, is normally used to treat heart conditions such as angina. The drug, which is marketed as mildronate by the Latvian pharmaceutical firm Grindeks, is a source of some national pride.But the drug, which boosts blood flow and may enhance athletic performance, was banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) as of 1 January 2016. Sharapova said she received an email about the list of banned drugs but failed to click on the link which listed them. She said her family doctor had first given her the drug 10 years ago after she frequently became sick, had irregular electrocardiogram results, a magnesium deficiency and a family history of diabetes.If Sharapova would not [have] used mildronate for 10 years, probably she would have discontinued her career five years ago, or four years ago or six years ago, who knows? Kalvins said. This is not increasing performance, but insurance that if you will go over your bodys boundaries, you still will be kept healthy, he added.For the health conditions Sharapova says she has, however, doctors say the scientific evidence for mildronate is limited compared with many medicines widely available in Europe and the United States, where Sharapova lives and trains, which have full regulatory backing and years of robust safety and efficacy data. Kalvins says he has not yet seen the scientific, clinically tested proof that mildronate should be banned as doping.If there is no scientific evidence or scientific background, why has it happened after 32 years of being on market as the safest cardio-vascular cardio protector? There is only one other option: there are some political reasons for it, he said.Kirovs Lipmans, chairman of Grindeks and its biggest shareholder, said use of the drug did not constitute doping and he criticised the government for not defending its reputation against Wada. Government officials said Wada was acting independently and they could not influence its decisions.last_img read more

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Body of Spanish toddler trapped in well recovered

first_imgRelatives of two-year-old Julen Rosello, whose body was just found, are seen in Totalan, southern Spain, on 26 January 2019. Spanish authorities said early Saturday that rescuers had found the dead body of a 2-year-old boy who fell into a deep well 13 days ago. Photo: AFPRescuers on Saturday found the body of a two-year-old boy who fell in a well on 13 January in southern Spain after an unprecedented rescue operation fraught with glitches which had kept the country on tenterhooks.Hundreds of people had been working round-the-clock under the media glare to try to reach Julen Rosello, who fell down a narrow shaft which is more than 100 metres (330 feet) deep while his parents prepared a lunch in Totalan, a southern town near Malaga.”Unfortunately at 1:25am the rescue team reached the spot where they were looking for Julen and found the lifeless body of the little one,” the central government’s representative in the southwestern region of Andalusia, Alfonso Rodriguez Gomez de Celis, wrote on Twitter.”My condolences to the family. RIP,” he added.A hearse arrived at the site shortly after the news broke that Julen’s body had been found.There had been no sign of life from the boy but rescuers believed they knew where he was inside the illegal well.The only evidence of the boy’s presence were some strands of hair that matched his DNA and a bag of candy that he had been holding when he fell into the well.”All of Spain feels the infinite sadness of Julen’s family. We have followed closely every step to reach him,” prime minister Pedro Sanchez wrote on Twitter.”We will always appreciate the tireless effort of those who searched for him during all these days.”Complicated rescueThe complex rescue operation has been fraught with complications that have caused delay upon delay as Julen’s distraught parents and relatives stood by.Rescuers were been able to get to Julen via the well he fell down because it was blocked by a layer of earth, sand and stones believed to have been dislodged when he tumbled into the shaft.They decided to dig a vertical shaft parallel to the well, 60 metres deep, which was finished late on Monday.The idea was to secure the shaft with tubes then take elite miners down in a specially made cage to start digging a horizontal tunnel to the site where they believe the child was.But the tubes designed to secure the shaft did not fit, so they had to widen it, which delayed the operation still further.Eventually, they succeeded and expert miners on Thursday began painstakingly digging a four-metre tunnel to join both channels and hopefully reach Julen with the help of four small, controlled explosions.The miners worked in teams of two and were equipped with oxygen tanks.Each small explosion took about two hours, which slowed down the rescue attempt.Two miners had to first go down the shaft and bore a few holes. They were then followed by two specialised officers who set up the explosives.Once they returned above ground, the explosives were detonated and then the rescue team had to wait half an hour to clear the shaft of polluted air.Despite the passage of time, the boy’s relatives held out hope that he had somehow survived the fall and would be found alive.His great-aunt Elena told private television Telecinco on Friday that “sometimes I fall apart because many days have passed and my boy is in a well, and we don’t know if he is alive or dead. I believe he is alive.”Julen’s parents lost another child, Oliver, aged three, in 2017. The child had cardiac problems.The well was unmarked at the time of the accident and regional authorities in Andalusia said the necessary permission had not been sought before it was dug.last_img read more

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A Turkish delight

first_imgGet ready for a cultural fest where Turkish art, music, dance and food will come together to create a heady culture-cocktail. The New Delhi Turkish Fest will be open to the general public free of charge from 5-10 PM on Friday, 22 March and from 11am to 10 pm on 23 March and 24 at Select City Walk, Saket. The festival is being inaugurated by HE Dr. Burak  Akcapar (Turkish Ambassador in India).Visitors will get an opportunity to celebrate, learn and savor Turkish hospitality, culture, heritage and cuisine. Organized by the Indialogue Foundation, this year the festival will showcase the miniatures of some of Turkey’s greatest monuments such as the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Rumi’s Tomb, Capadocia, etc. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The festival will have performances by the Whirling Dervishes of Rumi, Live Turkish music and folk dance performances, Ney performances, (Ney is a rim-blown, oblique flute made of reed and has six finger-holes in front and a thumb-hole in back. Using cross-fingering, finger-hole shading, and embouchure adjustment). Besides these there are also performances by Mehteran, the Ottoman Military Band thought to be the oldest variety military marching band in the world. There will also be calligraphy demonstrations where you can get your messages engraved on cards, key rings, plates and tablets and an Oriental Corner where you can pick some decorative Turkish pillows, tables traditional jewelry, handicrafts, rugs and more.And don’t miss the chance to sample authentic gourmet Turkish pleasures.DETAILAt: Select Citywalk, SaketWhen: 22 – 24 MarchTimings: 5 pm onwardslast_img read more

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Top 10 idols to find place at revamped art gallery beside Rabindra

first_imgKolkata: As many as 10 idols that have attracted pandal-hoppers during Durga Puja this year, will find their place at the refurbished art gallery beside Rabindra Sarobar. This will not only provide an opportunity to those who could not make it to the pandals but also the art lovers, as they will be able to witness the same throughout the year.The outside of the main hall within the boundary walls of the gallery that has space for accommodating three idols, has already been occupied. The idols of Bhowanipore 75 Palli and Dum Dum Park have already made their way to their second address, while last year’s idol of Chetla Agrani has also been placed. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeSeven other idols will be placed on separate concrete structures inside the main hall. The idol of Behala Friends Club will reach on Monday and the idol of Bakulbagan in Bhowanipore will also find its place there. “The five other idols will be decided after the Pujo Carnival on Tuesday. It will take some more time to arrange the idols in a systematic manner. The gallery is expected to be thrown open for the public soon after Kali Puja,” a senior KMDA official said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIt may be mentioned that KMDA has given a major facelift to the gallery that was created in 2012 for preserving the best Durga idols. The gallery, a brainchild of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, preserves around 10 idols every year, which are replaced by new ones the following year. Some issues over maintenance had cropped up after 2016, following which the decision of facelifting it was taken. The work that involved around Rs 2 crore, was supervised by KMDA executive engineer Sudhin Nandy.last_img read more

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What we learned at the 10th annual Discover America Day

first_img TORONTO — Ten years later and Discover America Day is still as popular – and relevant – as ever. The annual trade show, now in its tenth year, recently took place in Toronto and included over 25 suppliers from across the United States, all of which conveyed one common message: the U.S. is open for business and ready to welcome Canadians with open arms.According to Patrice Bell, Director-Travel Trade Partnerships for Brand USA, a total of 20.7 million Canadians visited the United States in 2015, which represents one-third of all visitation. From January-June 2015, the U.S. raked in 15.6 million overnight trips, 12.8 million of which were by leisure travellers. And although this figure is slightly down from 2014 numbers (5.9% decrease), Bell forecasts a 3% increase in traffic between 2016-2020.Here is an overview of updates from top suppliers:Air CanadaAir Canada will be launching new daily year-round, non-stop service between Vancouver and Dallas-Fort Worth beginning Feb. 5, 2017. It will be operated by Jazz Aviation LP under the Air Canada Express brand with 75-seat, Wi-Fi equipped CRJ-705 aircraft, offering both Business and Economy cabins. The airline also launched new U.S. trans-border flights from Vancouver this year to Chicago, San Jose and San Diego. Air Canada operates more non-stop flights on more routes between the U.S. and Canada than any other carrier, with more than 400 non-stop flights per day on 112 routes to and from 55 U.S. and seven Canadian airports.OrlandoThe #1 destination in the U.S. – Orlando – had a huge year in terms of new attractions. Mako, Orlando’s tallest, fastest and longest roller opened, opened at SeaWorld Orlando earlier this year. ‘Frozen Ever After’, a new ride based on the film ‘Frozen’, opened on June 21 at Epcot, while ‘Skull Island: Reign of Kong’ also made its debut at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. As for new hotels, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort made a big splash when it opened its doors on July 14, featuring 1,000 rooms and suites. Construction of Universal Orlando Resort’s new waterpark, Volcano Bay, is now underway, scheduled to be completed in 2017, plus plans for a $1.3 billion train station and 2,500-space parking garage has started at Orlando International Airport, slated for completion by year’s end.More news:  ‘Turn around year’ for TPI brings double-digit growthVisit Orlando has also launched its ’25 Family-Friendly Attractions Under $25’ promotion, which offers leisure travellers and families a myriad of budget-conscious experiences. For a full list, go to VisitOrlando.com.Atlantic CityIn Atlantic City, Harrah’s Atlantic City has completed construction on a $250 million waterfront Conference Center, the largest convention centre-hotel complex from Baltimore to Boston with two 50,000 square-foot ballrooms. Also, Tropicana has finalized a $50 million renovation that included boardwalk enhancements, hotel room upgrades and property expansion. Further, the hotel recently announced a $25 million renovation of 500 hotel rooms in its Havana Tower.San AntonioIn 2018, San Antonio – the United States’ seventh largest city – will celebrate its 300th birthday with a year-long calendar of special events, particularly in the first week of May during anniversary week. The city recently completed a $358 million project to lengthen the River Walk from three to 15 miles, connecting downtown with museums, cultural districts and the historic Pearl Brewery to the north.San Antonio’s River Walk.Myrtle BeachMyrtle Beach continues to rank as one of the fastest-growing family destinations in the U.S., attracting more than 17 million visitors each year. After an expansion in 2013, the Myrtle Beach International Airport completed an interior renovation of the original terminal at the end of 2015, adding an additional five gates. New hotels on the agenda include a 530-room Buchanan Hotel, slated for completion by 2017, and a new Homewood Suites Oceanfront Resort & Conference Center, the first and only Homewood Suites that is an oceanfront property.More news:  Sunwing to further boost Mazatlán service with new flights from OttawaVirginiaVirginia has long been known for its role in American history. But many visitors will be surprised to learn that the state has a burgeoning film tourism industry. Some of the more notable Hollywood films that have been shot in Virginia include ‘Lincoln’, ‘Silence of the Lambs’ and ‘Dirty Dancing.’ In fact, Mountain Lake Lodge where ‘Dirty Dancing’ was filmed still offers Dirty Dancing packages during summer months that include dance lessons and competitions. Aside from film tourism, Virginia is also home to over 280 wineries, making it the fifth largest wine producer in the U.S., and over 150 craft breweries.Credit: Mountain Lake Lodge.WestJetThis year, WestJet launched new service between Boston and Toronto and Halifax. Its Toronto-Nashville service will increase from 4x/week to daily starting Oct. 29. Its strong winter program to the U.S. includes flights from Calgary and Edmonton to the Hawaiian islands onboard Boeing 767s. Tuesday, September 27, 2016 Posted by What we learned at the 10th annual Discover America Day Sharecenter_img Tags: Air Canada, Atlantic City, Myrtle Beach, Orlando, Texas, Virginia, WestJet Travelweek Group << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

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Rep Hornberger hosts Chesterfield Township trustee for State of the State

first_imgPHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Pamela Hornberger of Chesterfield Township (right) was joined today by her guest, Macomb County resident Kathy Vosburg, for Gov. Rick Snyder’s State of the State address at the Michigan Capitol. Mrs. Vosburg is a Chesterfield Township trustee and a former chair of the Macomb County Commission. 23Jan Rep. Hornberger hosts Chesterfield Township trustee for State of the State Categories: Hornberger News,Newslast_img

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Michiganders deserve good dental health care

first_img19Jun Michiganders deserve good dental health care More than a thousand volunteers gathered at Calvin College’s Huizinga Tennis and Track Center in Grand Rapids June 1-2 to provide free dental care for all who attended, regardless of income or residency status.The bi-annual Mission of Mercy program of the Michigan Dental Association Foundation is a godsend to the thousands of Michiganders who have participated, and who face numerous barriers to receiving preventive and restorative oral health care, the most pressing one of course being financial. Organizers of the event estimate that volunteers provided care valued at $900,000 (6,000 procedures) to approximately 900 patients.Routine preventive dental care is not expensive, but it can be too much for many disadvantaged people. Low-income families, senior citizens, veterans and other populations might be faced with having to choose between paying the mortgage and paying for a trip to the dentist.Poor dental health in a child means pain and difficulty learning. In an adult, dental disease and missing teeth mean lost employment opportunities and without a job, addressing problems in the mouth is that much harder.The best way to end this cycle of dental disease and pain is to catch it early. We can do that by ensuring that dentists and dental hygienists go into our schools once a year to provide preventive screenings to kindergarten students.A bill I introduced in the House (HB 5241) would add dental screenings to the required health screenings for children entering school for the first time. The state already requires vision and hearing screenings, and that has helped identify children who might otherwise have faced educational obstacles. HB 5241 would add dental screenings because oral pain can have quite a negative impact on learning. The Department of Health and Human Services, working with local public health agencies, would manage the screenings. The House Fiscal Agency estimated implementing this bill would cost no more than $1.8 million annually.Health care providers support this legislation, and so do public health officials and school administrators. The bill has bipartisan support in the House of Representatives.Our state has made a lot of progress recently in improving access to oral health care. The expanded Healthy Kids Dental program and the inclusion of dental benefits in the Healthy Michigan Plan are two great advances and my bill would supplement them.We can do more. Lansing is considering proposals to:Use the existing dental workforce more effectively to get care to underserved areas;Improve Medicaid dental reimbursement rates; andFund more programs to educate patients and caregivers about maintaining good oral health and hygiene.It’s important to remember that oral disease is mostly preventable. Further, when compared to the price of neglect, identifying oral disease early or simply preventing it throughout a person’s lifetime are inexpensive. Investments in our state’s oral health would reduce the need for charitable events like the recent Mission of Mercy program. Just as importantly, by reducing disparities, cutting down on health care costs and improving the general quality of life, they would add to the list of reasons for professionals and tradespeople of all ages to move to our state.I will continue my work on improving access to good oral health care and dental insurance for as long as I serve in Lansing. I hope my colleagues, of both parties, will do the same.#### Categories: News,VanSingel Newslast_img read more

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Francebased Lagardère has taken majority control

first_imgFrance-based Lagardère has taken majority control of Africa-focused TV and film distributor DIFFA (International Distribution of Films and Fiction from Africa).The deal sees Lagardère formalise a partnership with DIFFA first announced earlier this year.The African business was formed three years ago by Alain Modot from the Media Consulting Group and Jean-Hubert Nankam from Ivory Coast-based prodco Martika. It aggregates and distributes African content, with about 500 hours in the catalogue.In the wake of taking control of DIFFA, Lagardère said it will open two new African offices; one in the Ivory Coast city of Abidjan and the other in Johannesburg in South Africa.DIFFA’s corporate headquarters will now be in Boulogne on the Lagardère Entertainment premises.“Lagardère Entertainment’s positioning in Africa coincides with the growing need for content on the continent,” says Takis Candilis, president of Lagardère Entertainment and of DIFFA. “We wish to offer the production means capable of responding to this demand, and accompany the growth of the audiovisual market.”“The new DIFFA is a synergy of shared goals and values dedicated to African creation,” says Alain Modot, managing director of DIFFA.Jean-Hubert Nankam, managing director of Martika added: ” The rise in demand for content produced by African professionals must be accompanied by structures created by people from a range of backgrounds, all who believe in this potential. Along with other initiatives providing a structure for these new opportunities, the new DIFFA will help in building a pan-African community of producers who exchange, share and develop common values and best practices.”last_img read more

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Almost 85 of UK households will have signed up fo

first_imgAlmost 85% of UK households will have signed up for a multiplay service – taking at least two media and telecom services from the same provider – by 2019, according to research by CCS Insight.This year, over 12 million UK households will take a bundle of three services from the same provider while a further 1.5 million will take four services from a single provider by the end of the year.CCS Insight expects the number of households purchasing bundles of four services to double in 2016, and to grow steadily in the near future, helped by consolidation of the telecom market, such as BT’s proposed acquisition of EE.Uptake of multiplay offerings is being driven by value, convenience and fewer bills as well as promotional activities, the rollout of new services, the emergence of new providers and a proliferation of no-contract options like Now TV, according to the research group.CCS Insight says that adoption of fibre broadband will also help OTT services, which will pose a serious threat to telecom operators’ ambitions in video.“Over 40% of UK households currently do not subscribe to pay TV services: this is a huge opportunity. BT has shown the way with the success of BT Sport. It’s now using its sport channels to drive up subscriptions to BT TV among its existing customers. It’s also targeting Sky TV customers who enjoy watching sports, while others like Virgin Media are positioning themselves as aggregators,” said Paolo Pescatore, director of multiplay and media at CCS Insight.“We will see similar battles in other types of programming beyond sport, fuelling further competition. We believe programmes, especially exclusive material, will be a key weapon in providers’ quest to secure customers. Those that offer a vast array of programmes will be better placed to succeed.”last_img read more

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STRABANE Community Projects new Grass Roots Conc

first_img STRABANE Community Project’s new ‘Grass Roots Concept’ has been announced as a joint winner of this year’s £2k Social Enterprise Competition run by Derry City & Strabane District Council as part of Enterprise Week 2019.£2,000 from the Council’s ‘Social Enterprise Innovation Seed Fund’ was up for grabs recently at Strabane District Caring Services as budding social entrepreneurs from throughout the City & District pitched their creative ideas for innovative projects they want to see get off the ground.Following the Social Enterprise Competition, £1k has now been awarded to ‘Strabane Community Project’ and ‘The Playtrail’ to help both groups set up a new shop / kitchen and training facilities. ShareTweet Derry and Strabane CouncilStrabane Community ProjectThe Playtrail£2k Social Enterprise Competition‘Grass Roots Café & Food Market’ joint winner of £2k Social Enterprise Ursula Doherty, Manager of Strabane Community Project said: “We’re delighted to have been awarded £1k from theSocial Enterprise Innovation Seed Fund!“This will make a huge impact in terms of us being able to buy cooking utensils, crockery and chefs’ clothing to help us to take this exciting project forward.“At the Strabane Community Project we’ve always been keen to develop a range of skill-building programmes, including cooking skills, money management and personal development, education programmes, training, etc.“Our café has also been greatly supported by the public and local businesses, community groups and outreach services who make use of the facilities to deliver meetings and events.“Our plans are under way for phase 2 of Grass Roots and work will be commencing in early April of the installation of a new larger kitchen to meet that increasing demand. “Indeed, it will also be a ‘training kitchen’ providing Level 1 & 2 accreditation in catering & hospitality. “Non-accredited courses will also be available for families and individuals who’d like to learn cooking skills or ‘How to cook on a budget’ programmes which will be delivered by the NW Regional College.“Importantly, we’re keen to help people come together and learn more about cooking – and in doing so better promote healthy living for residents in Strabane and the surrounding areas.”Danielle McNally, Business Officer with Derry City & Strabane District Council and a member of the four-strong panel who judged the £2k Social Enterprise competition, said: “I was delighted to judge this year’s pitching competition and hear from the many groups and social entrepreneurs from across the Council area who are interested in developing their new project idea.“Importantly, the ‘Social Enterprise Innovation Seed Fund’ is about rewarding and encouraging creativity, talent and innovative ideas within social enterprise.“As part of this year’s prize package both ‘Strabane Community Project’ and ‘The Playtrail’ will not only secure £1k in financial support, but can also avail of business support services from the Council which will help them grow.“It’s wonderful to see that funding for the larger working kitchen will provide much-needed training opportunities – and also benefit this great community space that is doing so much to unite residents across different backgrounds, ethnicities and ages.”‘Grass Roots Café & Food Market’ joint winner of £2k Social Enterprise was last modified: April 15th, 2019 by John2John2 Tags: Strabane Community Project will use the prize money to purchase cooking utensils, crockery and chefs’ clothing for larger kitchen facilities which will offer training opportunities and cooking workshops for people in the local area.Set up in 1987 to support older and more vulnerable residents in the area, Strabane Community Project also opened one of Northern Ireland’s first ‘social supermarkets’ under the management of Ursula Doherty in January 2018 to help people living in food poverty.The innovative new ‘social supermarket’ sells products reduced in price by up to 70% to people receiving welfare payments and tax credits. This allows them to purchase a range of cheaper items – including fresh and frozen food, dried goods, as well as fruit and vegetables – provided as surplus stock by the charity Fare Sharelast_img read more

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There will never be complete clarity on who the en

first_imgThere will never be complete clarity on who the enemy is (unless you live in a Muslim country, in which case the uniforms of the Western crusaders conveniently identify them). The global economic recovery is a fiction.Over the past week, it was revealed that Eurozone unemployment has now reached an all-time high to this point in the crisis… and real GDP has gone negative in the US. Wait a sec, some of you might say, that sure doesn’t look like a recovery!And you’d be right. Despite throwing literally trillions of dollars in new debt at the debt crisis (anyone else see something wrong with that logic?), the global economy continues to struggle.As I’m now running late, I’m not going to belabor this point. Instead, I’ll step out for a quick cup of coffee and let Casey Research Chief Economist Bud Conrad weigh in on the topic.Real GDP Dropped 0.1% in Q4 2012 – What Are the Implications?By Bud ConradExpectations were for GDP growth of about 1.6%, but a negative growth of minus 0.1% was a surprise.(Click on image to enlarge)Is a negative print indicating a possible recession ahead? Stocks were down in the US, but only by 44 points on the Dow, so the surprise was not so big a worry to the market. What’s going on?I’m reminded of the saying, “There are lies, damned lies, and (government) statistics.”This is the advance estimate of GDP, which will be revised two more times before it becomes official. It relies mostly on the first two months of the quarter and will change when December data is added. So the small negative is not really a meaningful number yet, as it will be revised.The cause of the drop was that national defense spending fell a whopping 22% in the quarter. When filtered through the various other effects on the economy, that made the real GDP 1.3% weaker than it would have been if defense were unchanged.I don’t think military spending gives us societal benefits, so I question if it should even be in GDP, but it is, and in the past it has made the economy look stronger, especially during its growth under Bush. There is also a tendency for military spending to grow in the third quarter, as that is the last quarter of the government’s calendar. The story is that once money is allocated, you have to spend it before you lose it. So a drop in relative spending in the fourth quarter is not uncommon.It was probably made worse by plans to implement the sequester at the beginning of the year (now delayed).There will be a new budget battle coming up over whether to go ahead with the sequester (cut) of defense spending in the next few months. There may be an argument that we can’t afford cuts when the economy is weak. I have my own bias that the government is too big and that, when you include the social programs that induce household spending, the GDP is far too dependent on the government for its growth. The combined effects of government are something like 40% of GDP, and that will be with us for a long time.The market is not taking the negative GDP as indicating a new recession, because other parts of the economy are continuing along with reasonable growth. Consumer spending, the main engine of US growth, rose 2.2%. Construction on new homes and apartments jumped 15.3%. Business spending on equipment and software was up. So the private-sector economy was not appearing weak.By one interpretation, the GDP number is probably a little worse than the headline because the inflation, as measured by the implicit price deflator, was also down.(Click on image to enlarge)If the deflator were 2%, as it has been reported in recent months, rather than the Q4 number of 0.6%, then the real GDP would have been 1.6% worse, at a negative 1.7%.ImplicationsIn the face of the deficit crises, I have often shared my opinion that the government would “kick the can,” as it consistently has. The tax rise on the wealthy was also Obama’s political promise and had been expected. Raising taxes, including the payroll tax, which was just accomplished, could cut household spending and hurt the GDP. If the economy is too weak to cut spending, then we will continue with the huge deficits that we cannot afford.Going forward, the debt ceiling will have no effect except to elicit hot air from politicians. It is their own shell game that goes back to the fig leaf that was instigated to replace the requirement that the administration had to get approval from Congress for each new debt offering in the early part of the last century.My prediction going forward is that Congress will make no major changes to the deficit until the dollar weakens and interest rates rise, forcing action. The Fed is monetizing at the rate of a trillion dollars a year, which covers 80% of the deficit. For now, the Fed has bailed out the federal deficit so politicians don’t need to do anything.The economy has been driven by Fed bubble blowing: first the stock market dot-com bubble (Internet stocks attracted day traders), then the housing bubble (flippers and the meme that real estate never goes down), and now a massive bond bubble (there’s no other safe place to put your money). The collapse of the biggest bubble ever in bonds will start once confidence in the Fed is lost in seeing that they can’t keep rates suppressed forever.The weak GDP report suggests the Fed will keep its attempt to pump up the economy, even as each QE program is having less and less effect. Simply put, as the government won’t cut its deficits, the Fed will keep up the QE because there is no exit strategy from this mess.  As rates begin to rise, the deficit will become unmanageable due to the rising scale of interest payments. But this debt bubble will burst because low interest rates cannot be forced forever. If history is any guide, the time will come when Fed stimulus will decrease confidence in the dollar more than it helps the economy, and at that point the deficit-boosted economy will collapse. The slowing GDP is an early warning we will be keeping a close eye on.Ed. Note: How much would it be worth to you personally to be thoroughly informed on the bubble in bonds, when it is likely to burst, and how you can profit – or avoid the losses? Bud Conrad will be providing his comprehensive analysis of the bond bubble in the upcoming issue of The Casey Report. You don’t want to miss it, and don’t have to… just take us up on our fully guaranteed trial offer for The Casey Report. If you don’t love the publication, simply cancel for a full refund within the first 90 days – and keep all the issues you’ve received as our way of saying thanks for giving it a try. Learning more is as easy as clicking here now.Final ThoughtsDavid again. Given the highly politicized nature of today’s world, it is important to take the effort to understand the fundamental realities, rather than blindly accept the fictions that spew forth from officialdom and its quislings on Wall Street and in the media.Things have reached the point where the reality gap between those deluded souls living in North Korea under the rule of Kim Jong Wu Ever and those living in the degraded Western democracies is rapidly narrowing. In North Korea, they are told that the South Koreans want to eat their babies or some such; in the United States, people are told that just across the border in Mexico, the streets are paved with headless corpses.(You might find the map linked to here of interest as it compares the murder rates of various countries against those in US cities. Let’s see, there are approximately 10 murders per 100,000 people in Mexico… half that of Washington and less than a third of that in Baltimore.)In North Korea, the people are told that the Jong family are one tick off from being deities and believe it. In the US and Europe, people are told that debt issuance and money printing without end is the “solution” to the financial crisis and believe that too.The bottom line on today’s musings is that it really behooves us all to revisit our beliefs and kick the tires on our assumptions, looking for some kernel of observable truth that we can use to guide us through the challenges ahead.One such reality is that gold has been considered sound money around the globe for most of recorded human history. While it’s been in a consolidation phase for over a year now, and could remain flat to down for a while longer, you have to ask yourself what’s more likely to retain its value? Currency units created out of thin air or an ounce of gold?Wherever possible, try to align your finances and your life with reality. While that may make you subject to periodic losses and inconveniences as popular delusions and the madness of crowds push markets, and countries, in unsustainable directions – in time, you’ll come out on top.Friday FunniesIf you’re not familiar with the work of Steven Wright, he’s the humorist who once said, “I woke up one morning, and all of my stuff had been stolen and replaced by exact duplicates.” His mind sees things differently than most of us do; here are some of his gems:1 – I’d kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.2 – Borrow money from pessimists – they don’t expect it back.3 – Half the people you know are below average.4 – 99% of lawyers give the rest a bad name.5 – 82.7% of all statistics are made up on the spot.6 – A conscience is what hurts when all your other parts feel so good.7 – A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.8 – If you want the rainbow, you got to put up with the rain.9 – All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand.10 – The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.11 – I almost had a psychic girlfriend… but she left me before we met.12 – OK, so what’s the speed of dark?13 – How do you tell when you’re out of invisible ink?14 – If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.15 – Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.16 – When everything is coming your way, you’re in the wrong lane.17 – Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.18 – Hard work pays off in the future; laziness pays off now.19 – I intend to live forever… so far, so good.20 – If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?21 – Eagles may soar, but weasels don’t get sucked into jet engines.22 – What happens if you get scared half to death twice?23 – My mechanic told me, “I couldn’t repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder.”24 – Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?25 – If at first you don’t succeed, destroy all evidence that you tried.26 – A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.27 – Experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it.28 – The hardness of the butter is proportional to the softness of the bread.29 – To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.30 – The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard.31 – The sooner you fall behind, the more time you’ll have to catch up.32 – The colder the x-ray table, the more of your body is required to be on it.33 – Everyone has a photographic memory; some just don’t have film.34 – If at first you don’t succeed, skydiving is not for you.And the all-time favorite –35 – If your car could travel at the speed of light, would your headlights work?Weekend Reads and WatchesInterview with Dennis Miller. Earlier this week, our own Dennis Miller sat for an interview with Kerry Lutz of the Financial Survival Network. It’s a good interview as it provides insights into the scale of the problems now facing retirees and those who would like to retire, and some of the solutions Dennis has uncovered. Here’s the link to the interview.Busy-Bodies of the Month. I really like Reason TV. In this installment, they reveal their busy-bodies of the month – in this case an absolutely mind-boggling new proposal to criminalize nicotine. Here’s the link.Perfect-Worlders Try to Kill Bambi. Along a similar line, this morning Dennis Miller sent me a link to a ridiculous story about a former police officer and his wife facing jail time for rescuing an injured deer. Here’s the link.Live Again. Earlier I mentioned the upcoming Harvest Celebration at La Estancia de Cafayate, March 14 – 19. For those of you who haven’t yet seen it, a short film titled Live Again was made at La Estancia that will give you a sense of the place. Here’s the link.Until Next Week!Sorry for going on a bit long this week. Starting work well before the crack of dawn and trying to compensate by getting juiced up on mate and coffee and ramped up with loud music has that effect on me.Before signing off, however, I want to mention that there are two new Casey Phyles forming – one in Nashville, TN, and one in Cleveland, OH. If you would like to join one of these meet-up groups, or one in your area, drop us a note at phyle@caseyresearch.com.I also want to mention that we’ve nailed down the dates for our fall Casey Research Summit in Tucson, Arizona: If you are interested in participating, mark October 4 – 6, 2013 on your calendar. We’re still working on the details, but you’ll hear from us as soon as more information becomes available. If you want to stay up to date and be the first to learn when registration opens for the Summit, simply get on our waitlist (being on the list doesn’t oblige you to attend the Summit).And with that, I will bid you farewell for the week by thanking you for reading and for being a subscriber to a Casey Research publication.David GallandManaging DirectorCasey ResearchCafayate, Argentina Dear Readers,It is said that death and taxation are the only certainties in life.Expanding on that list, however, we also know there are “physical laws” derived from extensive observations, in some cases dating back to antiquity. For example, sticking fingers in fires will result in unpleasantness.Then there is the realm of what one might call “common knowledge.” For example, the historical record makes it appear certain that, universally, power corrupts the human mind, and the greater the power, the greater the corruption.For a relevant example, look no further than Kim Jong-Il, who at an early age evidenced what psychologists term the “big six” personality disorders commonly shared by dictators: sadistic, paranoid, anti-social, narcissistic, with schizoid and schizotypal thrown in for good measure.Without the power devolved to him by his equally degraded father, Kim Jong-Il would have been hard pressed to get a date anywhere else in the world. As supreme leader, on the other hand, he was unhesitant in pressing into service a “Mansions Special Volunteer Corps” – a harem of attractive women plucked out of the population to attend to his every prurient whim.Tangling things up in this area of common knowledge is that we humans are quite adroit at adopting unproven ideas as certainties, even though they may be anything but. While the list of entries in this particular ledger are almost infinite, as just one example, I would point to the absolute certainty with which so many people view the notion that humans are the biggest culprits in climate change (previously referred to as “weather”).Another of these false certainties is that a government can create currency units out of thin air in unlimited amounts without triggering a subsequent devaluation of the currency units already in circulation. Furthermore, these days it is taken almost as common knowledge by a large swath of the population (at least by those who pay any attention at all to such things) that flooding a country with unbacked money is a good thing.Not to go on, as I am wont to do, but I would also mention the misconception by many that the United States, the most powerful country in the world (see reference to Kim Jong-Il above), remains the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.While one might subscribe to a different definition of the words “Free” and “Brave,” from where I sit, the United States is increasingly looking like a large Club Fed populated by a people whose re-education as serfs laboring on behalf of the state is almost complete.Recently, support for that contention was provided when Phil Mickelson pointed out that his taxes had reached 63% of his annual income and that, as a result, he was contemplating moving to a lower-tax state than California. For daring to want to keep more of his earnings than the state, which sinks not a single putt for its share, he was soundly pilloried in the press.Sadly, rather than telling his many critics to bugger off, he issued a series of apologies for speaking out against his tax-slave status.But the hour is growing late, and so enough of this rambling on.Moving along, I thought it worth trying to divine something approaching certainty about a few of the key aspects of today’s world that have the very real potential to affect us all in ways most profound.What We Now KnowIn no particular order, here are just a few important aspects of today’s world that appear to be true to me.The crusades are alive and well and will continue indefinitely. Since the first crusade in 1095, the Christians and the Muslims have been at war pretty much continually. In other words, the war has been going on for over 900 years.Back then, the battles were pretty straightforward affairs involving a wide range of sharpened instruments and projectiles, with no mercy asked and none given even if it was.In modernity, however, the war has evolved in most interesting ways. For example, there are no longer distinct lines of battles. Instead, thanks to the natural evolution of societies, the advent of political correctness accompanied by a whopping dollop of bureaucratic pandering, the Muslims are thoroughly embedded in previously staunchly Christian societies. (Interestingly, the opposite is not the case.)Adding to the fog of war is the nature of the weaponry and, by extension, tactics. Whereas in antiquity the warring parties had no real technological advantage, or at least not of a lasting nature, today the range of possible weapons and tactics is almost limitless.Case in point, the next attack on a major city is as likely to come in the form of a few jars of some particularly nasty germ dropped in the water supply as it is from a reengineered Stuxnet computer virus.Furthermore, as the potential enemies are numerous and reside within many borders, including your own, the possible responses to such an attack are rendered ineffective and even counterproductive. That’s how the moronic act of attacking Iraq after a small group of Saudis and Pakistanis in planes took down the World Trade Center buildings came about. The US had to attack someone, and so it picked the appropriate fall guy and set to work.Recapping what we know now in this instance:The crusades will continue indefinitely. The US government will do whatever it takes to keep the statists in power.That the nation is no longer governed by principles should be obvious to everyone at this point. Well, perhaps with the exception of the principle of self-preservation for the politicos.That they are masters at survival can be seen in the high reelection rate of members of Congress, despite the polls indicating their popularity as only a smidgeon above stepping into a pile of fresh dog droppings.In the current economic environment, however, their skills at blaming others and kicking cans down the road is being tested, witnessed by the adoption of concepts such as unlimited money printing, a concept previously reserved for banana republics and Weimar Germanys. Unfortunately, as I have expressed in my writings before, the quantitative easing is likely to be one of the last “soft” options as the crisis deepens.In the United States, the government is just a couple of ticks away from turning the de facto capital controls currently in place into those of a more hardened type. With the new FACTA foreign financial assets reporting regulations now in effect, all the necessary functionality is in place, leaving only a quick turn of the knobs to dial in punitive tax levels on such holdings or take some similar action to make the “unpatriotic” act of daring to move assets offshore into one that is also distinctly ill-advised.Then there is the inevitable grab for the trillions of dollars now in US pension plans, something that Doug has warned about for years. A recent story out of Bloomberg a couple of weeks ago sure looks like a straw in the wind to me. And I quote.The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is weighing whether it should take on a role in helping Americans manage the $19.4 trillion they have put into retirement savings, a move that would be the agency’s first foray into consumer investments. “That’s one of the things we’ve been exploring and are interested in in terms of whether and what authority we have,” bureau director Richard Cordray said in an interview. He didn’t provide additional details. Here’s the link…All that’s missing is the next stock market crash, and this initiative will rise to the fore. That the Sheeple will fall right in line with the logic of a government takeover of the pensions can be understood by looking at a number of surveys showing the majority of Americans don’t have any real savings.One study by the Employee Benefits Research Institute found that 56% of US workers have less than $25,000 saved. And that’s workers. Fully 54% of folks who have actually retired also report that they have less than $25,000 to live on.What this means is that over 50% of Americans are either currently, or will someday soon, be wards of the state. So, that’s something else we know.“The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who are not.” Thomas JeffersonDrifting back to this particular point, this fairly startling reality is all the excuse the government needs to shove both its mitts into the nation’s pensions and take what it needs to keep Washington DC in the wealth redistribution/political pandering business.The taking is as simple as requiring that all pensions contain at least “XX%” of safe Treasury bills or some new form of government-backed paper whipped up for the scam. Or, alternatively, you must withdraw your money from your IRA and pay the penalty – the rationale being that you are bound to lose your money if you manage it yourself and therefore the penalty and taxes for withdrawing are merely a deposit on future government handouts you are sure to need.It is, of course, ironic that the very people now contemplating helping retirees with their finances are the ones most responsible for bankrupting the country and devastating the finances of retirees by rigging interest rates to an artificially low rate. I would be remiss at this point if I didn’t tip the hat in the direction of the plain-talking, straight-shooting Dennis Miller, author of Retirement Reboot and editor of the highly praised Miller’s Money Forever, a monthly publication dedicated to helping those in or nearing retirement get their financial act together, and keep it together, through good times and bad.Earlier this week, Dennis sent along 95 pages of comments he received from a survey on what his subscribers wanted to learn more about. The top three topics were all related to moves people can make to generate reliable income – annuities, reverse mortgages, and dividend-paying stocks – all topics Dennis and his team have written extensively on.In fact, he has produced a number of special reports, The Cash Book, The Yield Book and The Annuity Guide, all of which are available at no additional cost to paid-up subscribers.Listen, this stuff is serious. If you are behind the 8-ball on your retirement savings, don’t even begin to hesitate to subscribe to Dennis’ service.Of course, we’ve got to make some money, so we can’t give the service away, but at just $99 a year – and you receive Dennis’ book Retirement Reboot (a $9.95 value) as a premium – it’s an extraordinarily good value.As the publication includes a 3-month, 100% money-back guarantee, you have zero risk in trying the service out.For details, click here.Which brings me to my final entry for today’s musings about what we now know… The biggest consequence of this sloppy Forever War is that the helpless (and some would chirp, hapless) Western governments and the military-industrial complex that props them up are at liberty to improvise countermeasures and strategies without any real limitations.Thus, every new attack, or perceived new threat, results in a new set of actions pretty much made up on the spot to punish the perps and counter the next attack. To name one relatively tame example, the act of a single Jihadist fitting a bomb in his sneakers resulted in the loss of countless of hours, and more than a little dignity, when the bureaucrats instituted a requirement that John Q. Sheeple must remove his shoes in order to board a plane.In addition, because these governments have no idea where the next attack is likely to occur or what form it will take, the perfect-worlder bureaucrats increasingly in charge of Western governments have begun to exercise the precautionary principle to the point of dangerous absurdity.In the event you are not familiar with the term, the precautionary principle basically holds that if there is a threat to the public, even though it is not proven, the burden of proof that it is not a threat falls to those claiming that it is not a threat.Thus, for example, if the military states that it sees a threat emanating from, say, Iraq and certain analysts disagree, the burden of proof falls upon the dissenting analysts. Because as often as not the perceived threats are little more than abstractions that are virtually unprovable, the threat-seers invariably win out, and off go the jets.Hoping to make the point clear, one might counter the gun waving of today’s military by theorizing that the most effective way of eliminating the Jihadist threat would be to pull all the troops out of the Middle East and to stop the constant meddling in the affairs of those countries. As this thesis is unprovable without actually taking the measure in order to gauge its effectiveness, the military-industrial complex and the headline-grabbing politicians and their bureaucratic stooges are free to dismiss it out of hand and continue to layer on the countermeasures they believe will head off the threats of further attacks.Unfortunately, many of those countermeasures are not just inane and ineffective, but require stomping on personal liberties. But, for the reasons just mentioned, there is no effective argument against them.“Why do you want me to go through an X-Ray machine in order to travel?” you might ask a TSA agent.“Because we’re at war with the terrorists, and it’s our job to keep the public safe!”“But I’m not a terrorist!”“Oh, yeah? Prove it. Starting by stepping into the X-Ray machine.”Likewise, arguments against building electronic files on everyone, including all their communications and Facebook contacts, fall on the deaf ears of bureaucrats who are charged with heading off the next attack.And because of the nature of the crusade, in the absence of a radical change of direction, the hit to personal freedoms will only get worse. Because this “war” is never-ending and has no hard targets of any consequence, which means that the tentacles of the government’s countermeasures will grow until they reach into every corner of our lives.The real consequences, however, will be felt only after the next large-scale attack. After that, the ardent advocates of the precautionary principle will kick their machinations into high gear, and you won’t be able to sneeze without first getting permission.(Somewhat related is the idea that schools should be turned into day-visit penitentiaries complete with metal detectors, bullet-proof glass, and armed guards, further inculcating the culture of paranoia and fear that now exists in the US. Managing by exception, a key tenet of the precautionary principle – and attacks on schools are very much the exception – is never a good idea. But that won’t stop the US from turning its schools into mini-Camp Feds.)Any way of ending the crusades and turning this terrible trend back?Not that I can see. Well, I suppose the better-armed Western governments could really take off the gloves, turn the Middle East into the proverbial parking lot, then round up anyone within their borders unwilling to denounce Islam and throw them into gas chambers re-education camps. But that’s not going to happen (and, lest you get the wrong idea, I am not advocating it in the slightest), which means that there is no way to end the Crusade.Instead, all you can really do is recognize it for what it is and, more importantly, recognize the direct consequences to you and your family in the months and years just ahead. Personally, I opted out from a seat within ground zero and, along with Doug Casey, plan on watching events unfold on CNN while sipping on a nice Malbec here in Cafayate.(Speaking of which, the next Harvest Event and Casey Research conference at La Estancia de Cafayate is coming up March 14-19.  This is the single best opportunity to find out for yourself what’s going on in this up-and-coming wine-growing town. For details and a registration form, write Dave Norden a note at dnorden@LaEst.com today.)So, what else do we know now?The United States is perilously close to becoming a one-party, socialist state. As a result of winning the last election, President Obama, a man whose ego needs no encouragement, may come to believe he has a mandate and will try to become far more than a token president – to wit, the first black elected to the office. Instead, he’ll try to become the first among firsts. The socialists in charge have effectively taken over medical services, are now focusing on taking away guns, and, based on the comments made during Obama’s inauguration speech, are planning to continue pushing the agenda of radical environmentalism, which, in turn, is a fulcrum point into more regulations on private business.It’s all about legacy at this point, and part of that legacy could very well be a follow-on term for the beloved Evita Michelle Obama, a woman whose mere presence can cause a liberal to grow weak at the knees. Or soft in the mind, as was in evidence on the always entertaining Huffington Post when one Nina Bahadur unleashed a torrent of drivel under the following masthead.(My personal favorites from Nina’s list were #21 – She’s a fan of pillow forts, and #45 – She has a sweet tooth. Who knew?!)The potential consequences of back-to-back Obamas and their devoted army of sycophants are many, and few of them good, as the roots of the tree they sprung from are of steadfast socialist stock.The historical record shows unequivocally that there is a line that, if crossed, makes the whole “from each according to their ability to each according to their needs” thing devolve into economic collapse and, often, fascism. At that point the slogan changes to something akin to, “From the burning houses of the greedy capitalists to the impoverished masses.”Any way this situation could turn around? Again, none that is easily imagined. We as a nation are way past the more genteel era when it was considered bad form for a sitting president to campaign for his party. Instead, it’s Chicago-style bare-knuckle politicking all the way, with overt distribution of favors to the inert to ensure reelection.The one possible way that the rising socialist tide is held up is if there is a major financial crash and the ruling elite somehow lose their ability to pin blame on someone else.In other words, the country is either headed for certain ruin as the productive class becomes further outnumbered by the recipient class and then turned into little more than tax cows, and the equivalent of Atlas Shrugs occurs. Or we have a whopping good crash that chases the socialists out from the shadows.Note that either scenario involves a crash. Which begs the follow-on question: how will the government react when things go off the rails?Will the population, confronted with inescapable ruin, come to their senses, starting by remembering that there actually isn’t such a thing as a free lunch? Or will they redouble their calls for the government to do more? While no one can see the future, I expect the latter. That is when the risk of socialism sliding into fascism will be greatest.Which brings us to the next certainty, if there can be any such thing (other than death and taxes)… It is nearly impossible to anticipate or to respond in any way other than with ineffective surgical strikes or blunt-force invasions.In the case of the former, as much as some misguided individuals might wish it to be the case, this is not a war that will be a series of drone strikes. And we need look no further than Afghanistan to see the failures of trying a blunt-force invasion when the enemy is fleet of foot and deeply embedded in the population, but is not the population as a whole. (If it were the population as a whole, as was believed to be the case in Germany in WWII, then the war would be a simple matter of unleashing widespread hell.) The next attack can come literally anywhere in the world and in any form.last_img read more

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Government revenue All mining businesses regardl

first_img Government revenue. All mining businesses, regardless of jurisdiction, have to pay certain levies on their revenue and earnings, including license fees, resource rents, withholding and sales taxes, export duties, corporate income taxes, and various royalties. Taken all together, these payments make up a large portion of overall mining costs. For example, estimates suggest that the total of mining royalty payments in 2012 across the top gold-producing countries worked out to the tune of US$4.1 billion. This, of course, doesn’t account for other types of tax normally applied to the mining industry. Other, often-overlooked ways in which the mining industry supports the economy include: Foreign direct investment (FDI). The three mining giants—Canada, the United States, and Australia—have been dominating this category for a number of years, both as the primary destinations for investment and as the main investor countries. The four countries with the highest numbers of gold mining employees are South Africa (145,000), Russia (138,000), China (98,200), and Australia (32,300). The industry also employs 18,600 in Indonesia, 17,100 in Tanzania, and 16,100 in Papua New Guinea. (As an aside, it’s quite telling that South Africa employs more gold miners than China, but China produces more gold than South Africa.) Note that these employment figures don’t include jobs in the artisanal and small-scale production mining fields, nor any type of indirect employment attributable to gold mining—so they understate the actual figures For many countries, gold mining accounts for a significant share of exports. As an example, gold merchandise comprised 36% of Tanzanian and 26% of Ghana’s and Papua New Guinea’s exports in 2012. Below, you see a more comprehensive picture of gold exports by 15 major gold-producing countries. Gold products. Gold as a symbol of prosperity and the ultimate “wealth insurance” is very important to many nations around the globe—especially in Asia and Africa. Gold jewelry is given as a dowry to brides and as gifts at major holidays. In India, the government’s ban on gold purchases by the public led to so much smuggling that the incoming prime minister is considering removing it. Chinese, Vietnamese, and peoples of India and Africa may all be divided across linguistic lines, but they all share the view of gold being a symbol of prosperity and ultimate insurance against life’s uncertainties. It’s also important to note that jobs with modern mining companies are usually the most desirable options for poverty-stricken people in the remote areas where many mines are built. These jobs not only pay more than anything else in such regions, they provide training and health benefits simply not available anywhere else. Mining provides work with dignity and a chance at a better future for hundreds of thousands of struggling families all around the world. Let’s now have a look at the most debated and contentious side to mining. Impact on the (Physical) Environment In previous millennia, humans labored with little concern for the environment. Resources seemed infinite, and the land vast and adaptable to our needs. An older acquaintance of ours who grew up in 1930s Pittsburgh remembers the constant coal soot hanging in the air: “Every day, it got dark around noon time.” Victorian London was famous for its noxious, smoky, sulfurous fog, year-round. Initially, the mining industry followed the same trend. Early mine operations had little, if any, regard for the environment, and were usually abandoned with no thought given to cleaning up the mess once an ore body was depleted. In the second half of the 20th century, however, the situation turned around, as the mining industry realized the need to better understand and mitigate its impact on the environment. The force of law, it must be admitted, had a lot to do with this change, but today, what is sometimes called “social permitting” frequently has an even more powerful regulatory effect than government mandates. Today’s executives understand that good environmental stewardship is good business—and many have strong personal environmental ethics. That said, mining is an extractive industry, and it’s always going to have an impact. Here’s a quick look at some of the biggest environmental scares associated with gold mining and how they are confronted today. Acid Rock Drainage (ARD) Target chemical: Sulfuric acid ARD occurrence in nature: Common Toxicity: Varies Keep in mind that this doesn’t include the indirect effects of gold mining that come from spending in the supply chain and by employees on goods and services. If this impact were reflected in the numbers, the overall economic contribution of gold mining would be significantly larger. Also, it’s evident that gold mining’s imprint on national economies varies considerably. For countries like Papua New Guinea, Ghana, Tanzania, and Uzbekistan, gold mining is one of the principal sources of prosperity. Another measure of economic contribution is the jobs created and supported by businesses. The chart below shows the share of jobs created of each major gold-producing country. Mercury Symbol: Hg Occurrence in the earth’s crust: Rare Toxicity: High Mercury, also known as quicksilver, has been used to process gold and silver since the Roman era. Mercury doesn’t break down in the environment and is highly toxic for both humans and animals. Today, the use of mercury is largely limited to artisanal and illegal mining. Industrial mining companies have switched to more efficient and less environmentally damaging techniques (e.g., cyanide leaching). Developing countries with a heavy illegal mining presence, on the other hand, have seen mercury pollution increase. The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) estimates that 1,000 tons of mercury are annually released into the air, soil, and water as a result of illegal mining activity. To help combat the problem, the mining industry, through the members of the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM), has partnered with governments of those nations to transfer low- or no-mercury processing technologies to the artisanal mining sector.center_img Sodium Cyanide Mining compound employed: NaCN Occurrence in nature: Common Toxicity: High “I would NEVER invest in a mining company—they destroy land, pollute our water and air, and wreck the habitat of plants and animals.” These were the points made to me by a woman at a social gathering after I told her what I do for living. She prided herself on her moral high ground and looked upon me with obvious disdain. It was clear that as a mining researcher, I was partly responsible for destroying the environment. I knew a reasonable discussion with her wouldn’t be possible, so I opted out of trying. (As Winston Churchill said, “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject.”) She left the party convinced her position was indisputably correct. But was she? Not at all. In fact, with few exceptions, today’s mining operations are designed, developed, operated, and ultimately closed in an environmentally sound manner. On top of that, considerable effort goes into the continued improvement of environmental standards. My environmentalist acquaintance, of course, would loudly disagree with those statements. Many people may feel uncomfortable investing in an industry that’s so closely scrutinized and vehemently criticized by the public and mainstream media—whether there’s good reason for that criticism or not. This actually is to the benefit of those who dare to think for themselves. So let’s examine what mining REALLY does to the environment. As Doug Casey always says, we should start by defining our terms… How Do You Define “Environment”? In modern mining, the term “environment” is broader than just air, water, land, and plant and animal life. It also encompasses the social, economic, and cultural environment and, ultimately, the health and safety conditions of anyone involved with or affected by a given mining activity. Armed with this more comprehensive view of the industry’s impact on the environment, we can evaluate the effects of mining and its benefits in a more holistic fashion. Impact on the Economy According to a study commissioned by the World Gold Council, to take an example from mining of our favorite metal, the gold mines in the world’s top 15 producing countries generated about US$78.4 billion of direct gross value added (GVA) in 2012. (GVA measures the contribution to the economy of each individual producer, industry, or sector in a country.) That sum is roughly the annual GDP of Ecuador or Azerbaijan, or 30% of the estimated GDP of Shanghai, China. Here’s a look at the GVA for each of these countries. This is one of the widely used chemicals in the industry that can make people’s emotions run high. Historically considered a deadly poison, cyanide has been implicated in events such as the Holocaust, Middle Eastern wars, and the Jonestown suicides. Given such associations, it’s no wonder that the public perceives it with alarm, without even adding mining to the equation. It is important, however, to understand that cyanide: is a naturally occurring chemical; is not toxic in all forms or all concentrations; has a wide range of industrial uses and is safely manufactured, stored, and transported every day; is biodegradable and doesn’t build up in fish populations; is not cumulative in humans and is metabolized at low exposure levels; should not be confused with acid rock drainage (ARD; see below); and is not a heavy metal. Cyanide is one of only a few chemical reagents that dissolves gold in water and has been used to leach gold from various ores for over a hundred years. This technique—known as cyanidation—is considered a much safer alternative to extraction with liquid mercury, which was previously the main method used. Cyanidation has been the dominant gold-extraction technology since the 1970s; in Canada, more than 90% of gold mined is processed with cyanide. Despite its many advantages for industrial uses, cyanide remains acutely toxic to humans and obviously is a concern on the environmental front. There are two primary environmental risks from gold cyanidation: Cyanide might leach into the soil and ground water at toxic concentrations. A catastrophic spill could contaminate the ecosystem with toxic levels of cyanide. In response to these concerns, gold mining companies around the world have developed precautionary systems to prevent the escape of cyanide into the environment—for example, special leach pads lined with a plastic membrane to prevent the cyanide from invading the soil. The cyanide is subsequently captured and recycled. Further, to minimize the environmental impact of any cyanide that is not recycled, mine facilities treat cyanide waste through several processes that allow it to degrade naturally through sunlight, hydrolysis, and oxidation. Contrary to popular belief, ARD is the natural oxidation of sulfide minerals such as pyrite when these are exposed to air and water. The result of this oxidation is an increase in the acidity of the water, sometimes to dangerous levels. The problem intensifies when the acid comes into contact with high levels of metals and thereby dissolves them, which adds to the water contamination. Once again, ARD is a natural process that can happen whenever such rocks are exposed on the surface of the earth, even when no mining was involved at all. Possible sources of ARD at a mine site can include waste-rock piles, tailings storage facilities, and mine openings. However, since many mineral deposits contain little or no pyrite, ARD is a potential issue only at mines with specific rock types. Part of a mining company’s environmental assessment is to conduct technical studies to evaluate the ARD potential of the rocks that may be disturbed. Once ARD has developed, the company may employ measures to prevent its spread or reduce the migration of ARD waters and perhaps even treat the water to reduce acidity and remove dissolved metals. In some places where exposed sulfide minerals are already causing ARD, a clean, modern mine that treats all outflowing water can actually improve water quality. Arsenic Symbol: As Occurrence in the earth’s crust: Moderate Toxicity: High Similar to mercury, arsenic is a naturally occurring element that is commonly found as an impurity in metal ores. In fact, arsenic is the 55th most abundant element in the earth’s crust, and is widely distributed in rocks and soil, in natural waters, and in small amounts in all living things. Unfortunately, it can also be toxic in large doses. The largest contribution of arsenic from the mining industry comes from atmospheric emissions from copper smelting. It can also, however, leach out of some metal ores through ARD and, when present, needs to be removed as an impurity to produce a saleable product. Several pollution-control technologies have been successful at capturing and removing arsenic from smelting stacks and mine tailings. As a result, between 1993 and 2009, the release of arsenic from mining activities in Canada fell by 79%. Similar figures have been reported in other countries. Mythbusters Now, here’s our quick stab at dispelling the three most widespread myths environmentalists commonly bring up in their rants against the mining industry. Myth 1: Mining Uses Excessive Amounts of Land Reality: Less than 1% of the total land area in any given jurisdiction is allotted for mining operations (normally far less than that). Even a modest forestry project affects far more trees than the largest open-pit mine. Mining activities must also meet stringent environmental standards before a company can even get a permit to operate. The assessment process applied to mining operations is very detailed and based on a long string of policies and regulations (e.g., the National Environmental Policy Act in the US). Environmentalists may claim that the mining industry is rife with greedy land barons, but there’s more than enough evidence to the contrary. Myth 2: Mining Is Always Detrimental to the Water Supply Reality: Quite the opposite, actually. Before mine operations start, a mining company must submit a project proposal that includes detailed water utility studies (which are then evaluated by scientists and government agencies). Many companies even install water supply systems in local communities that lack easy access to this basic resource. It’s also common for the rocks to be mined to be naturally acid generating—a problem the mine cleans up, by its very nature. Some die-hard zealots blame the mining industry for consuming huge amounts of water, but in fact it normally only uses +1% of the total water supplied to a given community, and 80% of that water is recycled continuously. Myth 3: Mining Is Invasive to the Natural Environment Reality: Yes, mining activity in certain countries has led to negative outcomes for certain plants and animals—not to mention the rocks themselves, which are blasted and hauled away. However, the industry has progressed a long way in the last few decades and, apart from rare accidents, the worst is behind us now. The key determinant here is compliance. All mining activity must comply with strict environmental guidelines, leading up to and during operations and also following mine closure. After mining activity ends, the company is required to rehabilitate the land. In some cases, the land is remediated into forests, parks, or farmland—and left in better condition than before. It’s worth reiterating that in some cases—where there’s naturally occurring ARD or where hundreds of years of irresponsible mining have led to environmental disasters—a modern mine is a solution to the problem that pays for itself. Can You Be Pro-Mining and an Environmentalist? Absolutely. Gold mining (and mining in general) is extractive and will always leave some mark on our planet. Over time, however, the risks have been mitigated by modern mining technologies. This is an ongoing process; even mining asteroids instead of planet Earth is now the subject of serious consideration among today’s most visionary entrepreneurs. Meanwhile, the (vastly diminished) risks associated with mining are far outweighed by the economic contribution and positive effects on local communities and the greater society. This net-positive contribution is here to stay—unless our civilization opts for collective suicide by sending us all back to the Stone Age. So What’s in It for Us as Speculators and Investors? Aside from all the wonderful things we have thanks to the mining industry—from air conditioning to fresh food, to life-saving medicines and dozens of products we use every day—we can profit from investing in the right companies. And we can do so knowing that our integrity is intact, because we’re putting our hard-earned money into an industry that creates value for every person on the planet. These are exactly the kinds of companies we follow in the International Speculator. If you sign up for a risk-free trial today, you’ll get instant access to the current newsletter edition including the full portfolio… PLUS two subscribers-only special reports that tell you which stocks are most likely to gain big this year: Louis James’ 10-Bagger List for 2014 and 7 Must-Own Mining Stocks for 2014. You don’t risk anything by test-driving our newsletter for 3 months. If you don’t like it, or don’t make any money, simply cancel by phone, email, or fax for a prompt, courteous refund of every penny you paid. Even if you cancel after the 3 months are up, you’ll still get a prorated refund on the remainder of your subscription. As I said, there’s nothing to lose. Click here to get started now.last_img read more

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