Ninety-four students of the Tilka Manjhi Bhagalpur University (TMBU) who turned up for the post-graduation exams in Hindi on Thursday were dismayed to learn that the question papers had not arrived.It was the last paper of the second semester post-graduation Hindi exam. The question paper had apparently not been printed.The Vice-Chancellor of TMBU Nalini Kant Jha has served show cause notices on the officer in charge of PG Hindi and section officer in the Office of the Controller of Examinations. The two have been asked to reply to the notices by Friday, after which suitable action would be initiated, the V-C told PTI.The VC said the exam has now been fixed for April 22.
Vowing to defeat a person “who betrayed people” by switching parties overnight, Maharastrawadi Gomantak Party(MGP) president Pandurang ‘Deepak’ Dhavalikar on Thursday began campaigning for the upcoming bypoll in the Shiroda Assembly constituency in North Goa.Mr. Dhavalikar’s statement was aimed at Subhash Shirodkar, the Congress MLA who resigned recently to join BJP and would contest from Shiroda in the bypoll.Mr. Dhavalikar, when contacted by The Hindu on Friday, denied that he was contesting the bypoll because of fears that two additions to the BJP legislative strength would reduce the MGP’s importance in the BJP-led alliance.On remarks by his brother, the MGP leader and minister Ramakrishna Dhavalikar, that there was no decision on Mr. Dhavalikar’s candidacy, the MGP chief said he was confident that the party and his brother would back him. When specifically asked if his contesting the election was not against the coalition “dharma”, as the MGP is an ally in the BJP-led government, Mr. Dhavalikar said, “My fight is not against the government or the BJP. It is against habitual defectors, whoever they are, but need to be taught a lesson so that others will be warned,” said Mr. Dhavalikar. When asked whether the MGP contesting the bypoll would affect its ties with the BJP, he said it would not have an impact.
Charly Suarez of the Philippines dominates Khir Akyazlan Bin Azmi of Malaysia in the quarterfinals of the light welterweight class men’s boxing competition of the 29th Southeast Asian Games at the MITEC Hall 8 in Kuala Lumpur. Suarez prevailed by unanimous decision. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/SEA GAMES POOLEumir Felix Marcial was emotional in semis win, he wanted to avenge fallen teammates. Photo by Marc ReyesKUALA LUMPUR—The three Filipino boxers left in the fight vowed to go all out for a gold medal on Thursday.Bantamweight Mario Fernandez, light middle Eumir Felix Marcial and light heavy John Nobel Tupas Marvin said they won’t pull any punches against their respective finals opponents in the 29th Southeast Asian Games here.ADVERTISEMENT PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH PLAY LIST 05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games00:50Trending Articles01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Filipino-British Marvin, a former army boxer for Great Britain, said he will be ready for the boisterous Malaysian crowd at MITEC Hall 8 when he takes on local boy Adli Hafidz Mohd Pauzi for the crown.“At the end of the day, you do what you gotta do, you exchange punches and don’t worry about anything,” said the 6-foot SEA Games rookie.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutPauzi won over Singapore’s Muhamad Dinie Hakeem via decision despite a generally lackluster performance here he hardly showed punching skills and movements.That should play to Marvin’s advantage as he loves to throw haymakers and doesn’t stand back from a full-blown, phone-booth slugfest. LIST: Class, gov’t work suspensions during 30th SEA Games SEA Games: PH’s Alisson Perticheto tops ice skating short program LATEST STORIES Read Next SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Marcial, who was in tears as he talked about his three teammates who suffered dubious losses, will be out for payback.“I will be all-out sir,” said Marcial in Filipino. “I will go for a clear win and will be punching for all my teammates who lost by questionable decisions.”Marcial, the 21-year-old from Zamboanga City, will battle Pathomsak Kuttiya, one of the five Thais who made it to the six gold medal matches.“We are all affected (by the teammates’ losses),” said Fernandez in Filipino. “But we don’t control the judges. We control ourselves so I will just fight on.”Fenandez, who hails from Bukidnon, will face Thai Chatchai Butdee, who went from flyweight to bantamweight.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC MOST READ Malaysian icon thwarts rising PH star WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The Philippines won five gold medals in the last SEA Games in Singapore. View comments
Al Arbour, the bespectacled gentleman of a coach who molded a young and talented New York Islanders franchise into an NHL dynasty that won four straight Stanley Cups in the early 1980s, has died. He was 82.The Islanders confirmed Arbour’s death in a release issued Aug. 28. Arbour had been in declining health, battling Parkinson’s disease and dementia, and was living in Florida.Beginning in 1973-74, Arbour led the Isles to 15 playoff appearances and won 119 playoff games — an NHL record with one team — over 19 seasons. His 740 career regular-season wins with the Islanders are the most with one NHL team.“Al will always be remembered as one of, if not the greatest coaches ever to stand behind a bench in the history of the National Hockey League,” Islanders President and General Manager Garth Snow said.“From his innovative coaching methods, to his humble way of life away from the game, Al is one of the reasons the New York Islanders are a historic franchise.”Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996 in the builder category, Arbour had success as a player but his real talent was in coaching.The defensive-minded defenseman won titles with the Detroit Red Wings in 1954, the Chicago Blackhawks (’61) and the Toronto Maple Leafs in ’62 and ’64 during an NHL career that spanned three decades and 14 seasons.His last four seasons were with the expansion St. Louis Blues, who took him to three more Cup finals and gave him start behind the bench.His coaching statistics were even better. Besides the four consecutive Cups, he won 782 games, making him the NHL’s second winningest coach behind his mentor, Scotty Bowman (1,244). The Islanders also set an NHL record by winning 19 consecutive playoff series.No team in any major sport has won four straight titles since Arbour’s Islanders did it. The Montreal Canadiens hold the NHL record with five straight titles (1956-60).Arbour’s success was a result of a lengthy period of stability on Long Island, where he was the coach of a team that was built by General Manager Bill Torrey — the franchise’s first employee.In their heyday, the Islanders core players included forwards Mike Bossy, Bryan Trottier and Clark Gillies, defenseman Denis Potvin and goalie Billy Smith.Former Islanders player Ray Ferraro paid tribute to Arbour on Twitter, saying: “Have so many thoughts on passing of Al Arbour. So sad, he impacted my career, life deeply. Rest peacefully Al.”Arbour’s last win came in 2007, when the Islanders brought the then 75-year-old out of retirement to coach his 1,500th game with the franchise, a 3-2 win over the Penguins.Arbour’s death comes at a time when the Islanders are in transition. The franchise is moving from its longtime and outdated home — Nassau Coliseum — in Uniondale, New York, to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn this season.The NHL named Arbour its coach of year in 1979. The Sudbury, Ontario native also was awarded the Lester Patrick Trophy in 1992 for contributions to ice hockey in the United States.“He is the greatest coach of all time,” said former Islanders goaltender Glen ‘Chico’ Resch, who played on the Islanders first Cup winner before being traded late the following season.“He had that special touch that only a few people are gifted to have naturally. It’s sort of like the superstar hockey player who has that special talent to score goals but continues to be humble and accommodating and everyone loves the guy.”Respect might be the best way to describe Arbour. He respected the game and gave everything he had. One of the last NHL players to play wearing glasses, he never hesitated to go down and block shots and he had a couple of hundred stitches to prove it.As a coach, he respected his players, but found ways to push them. Failing to listen would result in fewer shifts and games missed.“He hated to tell people they were not playing,” Resch said.Resch said the Arbour was one of the few coaches in his era who did not coach from “a position of fear.” He did what he had to do to win, Resch said.“He coached a team that overachieved in 1974 and then led a Stanley Cup team that reached every ounce of its potential,” Resch said.As a player, Arbour finished with 12 goals and 58 assists in 626 career games.In retirement, Arbour was an avid NHL follower and sometimes critic.During the 2012 playoffs, he complained about the NHL’s inconsistencies in disciplining players, and how it led to stars such as Sidney Crosby and Claude Giroux having to become involved in fights to defend themselves.Arbour also voiced complaints about how quickly teams lose patience with coaches and general managers, wondering if he would have coached the Islanders for as long as he did in today’s game.“The minute you lose a few games, you get the hammer, you get canned,” Arbour told The Associated Press in 2010. “It’s craziness. The guy they get is not any better.”He is survived by his wife Claire, and children Joann, Jay, Julie and Janice.(TOM CANAVAN and JOHN WAWROW, AP Sports Writers)TweetPinShare0 Shares
ANN ARBOR, MI – OCTOBER 17: Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines leads his team onto the field before the college football game against the Michigan State Spartans at Michigan Stadium on October 17, 2015 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Solon, Ohio’s Najee Story is just a high school sophomore, but he’s likely to become one of the biggest recruits in the Midwest.Story’s season was unfortunately cut short due to a broken leg in the fall, but he showed enough to land an offer from Dana Holgorsen’s West Virginia staff.Now, two of the biggest programs in the region have come calling.Last week, while on a junior day visit, Michigan defensive line coach Shaun Nua extended a scholarship offer to Story.From 247Sports:“Before we left, their new defensive line coach Shaun Nua came over to me and said he couldn’t let me leave without giving me a Michigan offer,” he added. “I was very surprised by that, to be honest. It felt amazing and I was pretty speechless because I had just met Coach Nua that day. This was my first visit to Michigan and everything was great.”When he returned from Ann Arbor, the Wolverines’ hated rival, Ohio State, came calling for the home-state star.A planned Ohio State trip earlier this month was canceled, but Buckeyes coach Tony Alford made sure to offer Najee Story.He has also spoken to new Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day, when he visited for bowl practice:“Shortly after landing his Michigan offer, Story talked with Ohio State assistant coach Tony Alford by phone. Story was supposed to attend the Ohio State junior day the week before, but that was canceled due to weather.‘I did speak with Coach Alford the night I got back from Michigan, and he told me he intended to do something in person but that wasn’t possible because things got canceled,” Story explained. “He went ahead and offered me a scholarship right then. Ohio State has been the team I’ve watched growing up, so for them to offer me is hard to put into words.’”Now, Story is heading back to Columbus this Saturday with his father.It is too early to know who the finalists will be, and there are dozens of offers inevitably coming Story’s way, but Ohio State and Michigan are definitely getting out ahead of their other recruiting rivals, and both appear to have made a strong earlier impression.[247Sports]
Press Trust of India HyderabadMarch 20, 2019UPDATED: March 20, 2019 21:00 IST VVS Laxman said David Warner has joined Sunrisers Hyderabad for IPL 2019 with a positive mindset. (SRH Photo)HIGHLIGHTSVVS Laxman said David Warner’s leadership kills are “unmatched”Laxman said he felt the kind of punishment Warner got for ball-tampering incident was not rightLaxman further said Warner will be “determined to do the best”Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor VVS Laxman is delighted to have David Warner back in the mix as his “unmatched leadership skills” is a big plus for the franchise.While Kane Williamson will once again be leading the side, Warner’s inputs and influence on the team members makes him an important part of the leadership group.Warner along with Steve Smith are returning from their year-long ban for their involvement in ball tampering scandal in South Africa.”There is a big difference, because he [Warner] is a world class player. For us as a franchise we are so proud of what he has achieved for Sunrisers. He is not only a premier match-winner but his leadership skills are also unmatched,” Laxman waxed eloquent about Warner during a media conference.”The kind of role he played in the development of lot of youngsters in the franchise. He is setting example with his work ethics and the kind of preparation he does before every match,” Laxman told reporters at an event here.SRH head coach Tom Moody feels that the prolonged absence will not have an impact on his performance.”David Warner’s frame of mind I think is positive one. Certainly, through my communication with David has all been a positive one. When you are a world class player and you got an unquenchable thirst to succeed. When game of cricket is taken from you and once it is handed back, you need to do lot of catching up and David will be determined to do the best,” Moody said.advertisementOn Warner, who was awarded 12-month ball tampering suspension, Laxman said “Personally for me, it was very unfortunate what happened at Cape Town. I feel that the kind of punishment which he got was not right.”On Kane Williamson, who will once again lead Sunrisers, Moody said:”We all know that Kane Williamson is not only an outstanding player in all formats of the game but he is also a highly respected international leader.””He stepped up last year and did a wonderful performance not only as a captain, but as a top order player. We have no question in his ability with the bat. He is a wonderful player. We got a side that boasts of lot of leadership and that’s the strength of any squad that is going to be successful. It is not just dependent on one leader alone.Laxman is hopeful that new additions like New Zealander Martin Guptill and Englishman Jonny Bairstow strengthens the squad along with India regular Vijay Shankar, former U-19 World Cupper Abhishek Sharma and India A left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem in the mix.SRH bowling coach Muttiah Muralitharan said SRH has got very good bowling attack headed by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and this year with addition of Nadeem and Abhishek, the spin attack will be little bit strengthened.”And then also we got ‘the’ bowler–Rashid Khan. We got the bowlers who can take wickets. I think this year will be better than last year because we got balance between spin and fast bowlers. Last year we struggled a bit in spin bowling but this year the balance is right,” Muralitharan added.Also Read | Harbhajan Singh’s cooking session with Stephen FlemingAlso Read | The Dhoni, Raina impact on Chennai Super Kings, IPL’s most successful sideFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Tags :Follow David WarnerFollow Kane WilliamsonFollow Sunrisers HyderabadFollow VVS LaxmanFollow Muttiah MuralitharanFollow IPL 2019 David Warner’s leadership skills are unmatched: Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor VVS LaxmanIPL 2019: VVS Laxman, Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor, said that David Warner is a match-winner and a great leader and appeciated his role in the development of youngsters at the franchise.advertisement
zoomImage Courtesy: Ardmore Shipping Ardmore Shipping Corporation, an owner and operator of product and chemical tankers, reported a net loss of USD 13.7 million for the six months ended June 30, 2018, sinking further into the red.Namely, the net loss more than tripled when compared to last year’s USD 4 million, mostly driven by challenging charter market conditions.Spot and pool MR tankers earned an average of USD 12,086 per day, while chemical tankers earned an average of USD 12,816 per day for the six months ended June 30, 2018.“While the fundamentals of the product tanker market remain sound, a number of unrelated short-term factors came together to put downward pressure on cargo volumes and charter rates, particularly in the Atlantic Basin. “Cargo flows from the US Gulf to Brazil and Mexico declined in the latter half of the second quarter as a result of domestic issues and consequent increases in local refinery throughput. Simultaneously, a significant build-up of West African product inventories during the first quarter further reduced cargo volumes and freight rates from Europe and the US during the second quarter,” Anthony Gurnee, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer, said.However, Gurnee is upbeat on the market outlook, especially in anticipation of the changing regulations for bunker fuels in 2020, bringing a significant increase in seaborne volumes of refined products from mid-2019, and providing a further boost to tonne mile demand.On the supply side, ongoing scrapping and the record-low orderbook for MRs should result in net fleet growth of less than 1% in 2018 and 2019. This pairing of strong tonne mile demand growth and very limited supply growth creates the conditions for a rebound in charter rates, he added.“Meanwhile, we are focused on maintaining financial strength to ensure that the company can take full advantage of opportunities that may arise,” he continued.During the quarter, Ardmore completed refinancing of the Ardmore Endurance and Ardmore Enterprise, two 49,000 Dwt Eco-Design product tankers, with an undisclosed Asian financier. The agreement provides for the net proceeds of USD 10.3 million after prepayment of existing debt.The company has 28 vessels currently in operation, comprising 22 Eco MR tankers and six Eco-Design IMO 2 product / chemical tankers.
Rabat – The President of the Justice and Development Party (PJD) in the House of Representatives, Idriss Azami Al Idrissi, voiced his group’s concern on Tuesday May 30 that the Parliament has been “absent” from the dialog regarding the protests and unrest in Al Hoceima. Idriss Azami Al Idrissi, who heads the group of Justice and Development Party members in Morocco’s House of Representatives, said in a speech on Tuesday that it is “regrettable” that the Parliament is not concerned with the debate regarding Al Hoceima, which he characterized as “a national public issue.” Azami Al Idrissi said that the situation has sparked protests in different Moroccan cities and is apparently “of concern to everyone except the Parliament.” The member of the PJD’s National Council added that his group had contacted the President of the Council and the government through the Council on important national issues, noting that other parliamentary groups had done the same thing “under Article 104” of the constitution. Azami Al Idrissi also revealed that the PJD group had demanded a meeting with the counselor of the Ministry of Interior and the Minister of Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, to discuss the situation in the Northern city of Al Hoceima. He stated that his PJD group had “remarked that the government had been absent from this national issue, and the Parliament has an important role in it.” The President of the PJD members urged the Speaker of the House of Representatives to “do what is necessary” for Parliament to fulfill its duties in the government.
Rabat – Western Sahara Resource Watch (WSRW), an active pro-Polisario Front NGO network operating in several countries, including Sweden, is putting pressure on the Swedish government to derail local companies’ dealings in Western Sahara.WSRW and local Polisario advocacy NGO Emmaus Stockholm drafted a report denouncing what it described as the silence of the Swedish government on the continuous involvement of local companies in the region, despite the December 2016 ruling of the European Court of Justice, which stated that the agriculture agreement between Morocco and the European Union is not applicable to Western Sahara.A statement released by the two groups cited major Swedish companies which, according to WSRW, are not abiding by the court’s judgment. Among these are the Swedish mining and construction giant Atlas Copco and the shipping firm Wisby Tankers. WSRW said the government led by the Social Democrat Stefan Löfven should “advise” local companies not to engage in Western Sahara.“The Swedish government has a responsibility to issue clear guidance on how companies and governmental bodies ought to act in relation to Western Sahara,” said WSRW member Erik Hagen.While relations between the Moroccan and Swedish government turned sour in October 2015 over talks of Sweden’s intention to recognize the self-proclaimed Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), the tension later on faded between Rabat and Stockholm when the latter retracted from its earlier plans.After that the country became, with time, subject to criticism from the supporters of the separatists.Sweden, among other European countries, seems concerned with the future of trade cooperation with Morocco in light of the European court ruling. The EU and Morocco are currently in talks to reach an agreement on how to preserve cooperation despite the court’s judgment.
FUKUOKA, Japan — The Latest on the meeting of financial leaders of the Group of 20 major economies (all times local):1:50 p.m.U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says he plans to speak one-on-one with China’s central bank governor about trade.Mnuchin said Saturday that he would hold routine talks on various issues and then meet privately with Yi Gang, chairman of the People’s Bank of China.He said the focus of that one-on-one discussion will be the trade dispute between Beijing and Washington. But he said he expects any major progress to wait until a meeting of presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping in Osaka later this month.Mnuchin and Yi are among finance officials attending an annual meeting of the Group of 20 major economies ahead of a summit in Osaka later this month. He said there were no plans for trade talks in Washington or Beijing before then.___11:25 a.m.Finance chiefs of the Group of 20 major economies meeting in the Japanese city of Fukuoka are debating how to revise tax systems to ensure big companies pay their fair share and support economies as global growth slows.U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Saturday that tax policies must capture the “digitalization” of business to prevent a “race to the bottom” by countries trying to lure companies by offering unsustainably and unfairly low tax rates as an incentive.Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso says there must be “no big losers” due to the reforms, which he says could be the most significant in a century.In Washington, meanwhile, President Donald Trump tweeted that he will refrain from a 5% tariff on exports from Mexico, citing progress on the migration issue.The Associated Press
26 January 2007Jody Williams, winner of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize and co-founder of the Nobel Women’s Initiative, will lead a five-person high-level mission to evaluate the human rights situation in the war-ravaged Darfur region, the United Nations Human Rights Council announced today. The Council’s President, Mexican Ambassador Luis Alfonso de Alba, appointed the five “highly qualified persons” comprising the Darfur mission after conferring with the Council and Sima Samar, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, who will also participate in the mission.The other four members of the mission are: Mart Nutt, an Estonian Parliament Member and Member of the Council of Europe’s European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance; Bertrand Ramcharan, the former Acting and Deputy UN High Commissioner for Human Rights; Patrice Tonda, Gabon’s Permanent Representative to the International Organizations in Geneva; and Indonesian Ambassador Marakim Wibisono, President of the 61st session of the Commission on Human Rights. These members will serve in their personal capacity.The appointments come more than a month after the decision to convene a high-level panel to assess the human rights conditions in Darfur, which has witnessed countless instances of abuses, among them mass rape, abduction and forced relocation. Over 200,000 people have been killed in the region since 2003 and another 2 million displaced from their homes due to prolonged fighting among Government forces, allied militias and rebel groups.
ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Estimated costs for the troubled Muskrat Falls hydro megaproject in Labrador have now hit $11.4 billion including financing.That’s up from an original estimate of $7.4 billion — including the cost of borrowing — when the development was sanctioned in 2012.First power from the dam and hydro station under construction on the lower Churchill River was expected next year, but Nalcor Energy CEO Stan Marshall now says first power is delayed until the fall of 2019.“In my opinion the Muskrat Falls project was not the right choice,” Marshall told a news conference Friday.Still, he said he expects the project will “finish strong.”Terence Corcoran: How Muskrat Falls went from a green dream to a bog of red inkFormer Fortis president takes over company leading Newfoundland’s Muskrat Falls projectCEO leading massive $9.2 billion Muskrat Falls hydro project resigns: ‘It’s my decision’Full power from Muskrat Falls to the island of Newfoundland and on to Nova Scotia through subsea cables is expected in mid-2020.Marshall says original cost estimates were optimistic or overly aggressive.He also says some contractors lacked experience working in harsh environments and that early execution by some “was poor.”About $6.7 billion has been spent or is already committed to the project.Marshall says most problems stem from construction of the power plant. He says Nalcor is in “a major dispute” with construction contractor Astaldi Canada. He said it’s the major uncertainty for Muskrat Falls but that talks continue.Marshall says electricity rates for domestic customers are now expected to rise to 21.4 cents per kilowatt hour in 2021, before tax. That’s up 6.3 cents from forecasts when the project was sanctioned in 2012.Sales of available export power would bring those estimates down by less than a cent, Marshall predicted.Consumers in the province paid about 12 cents per kilowatt hour last year before tax. That compares to almost 15 cents in Ontario and 16 cents in Nova Scotia.Marshall says forecasted energy needs have decreased, but the province still needs a new source of power to replace the aging Holyrood plant and to meet future demand.He predicts by the time Muskrat Falls comes onstream, consumers in the province will be paying among the highest rates in the country.Still, Marshall — who took over just two months ago as CEO of the project, which was sanctioned by the former PC government — says it’s too late to turn back.“It was a gamble,” Marshall said of energy price assumptions made when the project was approved.“And it has gone against us.”The province is obligated to provide power to Nova Scotia utility Emera for 35 years. Nixing Muskrat Falls and myriad contracts would be far more expensive than forging ahead, he said.“The project was too big for our needs,” says Marshall. “We speculated, and we lost.”Premier Dwight Ball said he wouldn’t go so far as to describe Muskrat Falls as a “boondoggle” as Marshall did.But he said he can understand if people question why they should trust anything they hear from Nalcor Energy.“I completely understand why people would look at the project and say: ‘I’ve heard this before. It’s political.’“We’re going to see it past the finish line. Underpinning it will be reliable power at competitive prices.”Ball said he’ll work with Marshall over the next four years to find ways to lower Muskrat Falls power rates for consumers.“We’ve inherited this project. We’ve inherited the challenges that come with it.”
Jonathan Vilma, the New Orleans Saints’ linebacker who received a one-year suspension in the team’s bounty case, received strong support from quarterback Drew Brees in his quest to play this season.Vilma is fighting his punishment levied by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Brees’ affidavit was entered in New Orleans federal court as evidence for Vilma’s motion to dismiss the 2012 suspension for the linebacker’s alleged involvement in a program offering bonuses to players who injure opponents. Vilma has sued Goodell, claiming defamation. An NFL investigation found that the New Orleans Saints operated a bounty system rewarding between 22 and 27 players for hard hits and injuring opposing players.Drew Brees, who signed a five-year, $100 million contract last week to stay with the Saints, also swears that he wasn’t aware of any bounty program.“I have no knowledge of a pay to injure program existing, and yet to personally see any evidence that would substantiate these allegations,” Brees says in the affidavit. “In my four years as a teammate with Jonathan, I have found that he is a man of integrity who passionately plays the game of football within the frameworks of the rules and has respect for his opponents.”Drew Brees was generous in his depiction of Vilma, who has been a model citizen off the field. He said Vilma has been dedicated to helping the city recover from Hurricane Katrina and has started a foundation to build schools in Haiti.“As a professional football player, our platform to reach our communities is directly driven by the manner in which we compete on the field,” Brees said. “Therefore, Jonathan’s absence on the field will adversely affect his ability to impact the community in a positive way as a leader and a role model.”Vilma and Saints coach Sean Payton have been suspended for the 2012 season for their roles in the bounty program the NFL says went on for three seasons.The league wants the case dismissed because the collective bargaining agreement reached last August to end the lockout gives the commissioner the authority to punish players for “conduct detrimental” to the NFL. But Vilma is not accepting Goodell’s unilateral decision without a fight.
When Major League Baseball’s All-Stars take the field Tuesday night in Washington, the Cleveland Indians will be quite well-represented. With starting third baseman Jose Ramirez leading the way, the Tribe has six total players on the American League roster, tied with the Houston Astros for the most in MLB.1Including both original All-Star picks and injury replacements. It’s a fitting honor for this star-powered season in Cleveland: The Indians currently boast four players — Ramirez, Francisco Lindor, Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — each on pace to put up at least six wins above replacement,2Averaging together the WAR values found at Baseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs. which, if it holds up (grain of salt), would tie them for the most by any MLB team since 1901.That kind of star performance is nothing new for the Tribe, though. Since the All-Star Game began in 1933, only seven franchises (the Yankees, Cardinals, Red Sox, Dodgers, Reds, Giants and Braves) have sent more total players to the midsummer classic than Cleveland has. And no team’s top players have done more to help their league win during the game itself, especially on the pitching side. The franchise may not have won a World Series since 1948, but it does shine brightly on at least one high-profile stage.I figured all this out by crunching a simplified version of WAR on the stats from each All-Star Game in history. This WAR doesn’t use defensive metrics3Though I did adjust for position. or fancy adjustments for extra bases gained, but it does judge a player’s basic hitting and pitching stats relative to the environment in which they were produced. (For batters, this mainly meant calculating runs above average using weighted on-base average; for pitchers, this involved a 50-50 blend between the value of not allowing earned runs and the value of performance in categories a pitcher directly controls — walks, strikeouts and home runs.)4I also applied an adjustment for the leverage index of a pitcher’s innings, although I ditched WAR’s usual distinction between pitching stats for starters and relievers. In the All-Star Game, most pitchers are used in the manner of a typical reliever — for just an inning or two — even when they start.By all those numbers, here are the franchises who have the best All-Star Game WAR over time, divided by the number of years they’ve existed (through 2017): In terms of value from batters (per season that both the team and the All-Star Game existed), the Indians rank fifth behind the Cardinals, Red Sox, Tigers and Diamondbacks. That’s pretty good, and it comes thanks to players such as third baseman Al Rosen (career 1.247 All-Star OPS, or on-base percentage plus slugging) and catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. (who was named MVP in 1997). But the pitching side is where Cleveland has really distinguished itself, easily ranking No. 1 among all franchises (topping the Dodgers and Reds). That’s largely due to the efforts of 1930s/40s-era Tribe hurlers Mel Harder and Bob Feller, who show up as the top two pitchers in All-Star history according to WAR. In 25⅓ combined All-Star innings over nine appearances, that pair allowed just 1 earned run, good for a miniscule ERA of 0.36.Now, we should note that it’s no coincidence the All-Star Game’s most valuable pitchers played early in the game’s existence. Back then, pitchers like Feller were allowed to log three to four innings at a time, as opposed to today’s trend of letting each pitcher on the roster get about an inning of work apiece. Obviously, it’s easier to rack up big WAR totals if you get to throw more innings — provided you’re effective the way Harder and Feller were.But that isn’t to say no modern players are near the top of the All-Star WAR ranks. Mariano Rivera ranks ninth among pitchers after allowing zero earned runs in nine innings of work, and Randy Johnson ranks 11th. On the hitting side, Derek Jeter enhanced his status as baseball’s biggest star with a 1.184 OPS and the third-most All-Star WAR of any position player.5This is the part where I reiterate that this simple version of WAR doesn’t factor in Jeter’s astonishingly bad defense relative to other shortstops. And Mike Trout is zooming up the list — because of course he is — with a 1.533 OPS and the seventh-most WAR of any hitter, compiled in only five appearances.Speaking of modern entities, at the other end of the All-Star WAR spectrum from the Indians are the Miami Marlins and Colorado Rockies, who look terrible even after adjusting for how comparatively few chances they’ve had to rack up appearances. (Each franchise entered MLB in 1993.) Interestingly, the Astros join them among the teams whose players have done the least in the All-Star Game over the years. Houston has had plenty of top-line talent to represent it, but Jose Altuve and Craig Biggio combined to go 1-for-23 in their All-Star appearances, and Roger Clemens gave up 3 earned runs in two innings as an Astro, to go with a handful of other high-profile flops.The good news for the Astros is that they’ll get a bunch of chances to reverse that trend in Tuesday’s game. At the same time, the Indians will get plenty more opportunities to pad their all-time numbers. Bauer and Ramirez might never catch up to Feller and Rosen, but they do have a lot of illustrious history on their side.Check out our latest MLB predictions.
Leading experts will meet in Botswana, November 23 – 24, for the Connecting Resources and Society conference that is set to explore the role of Botswana’s diamond industry in the socio-economic development of the country since independence, almost 50 years ago. It will also discuss how responsible resource management can safeguard the benefits of resource extraction for future generations.The conference, organised by Chatham House, a world-leading independent policy institute, will be hosted jointly by The De Beers Group of Companies and the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources. Across the two days, the hosts will be joined by civil society, members of the media and Botswana’s private and public sectors. The speakers and panellists will examine the role of public-private partnerships, such as the one between the Government of the Republic of Botswana and De Beers.The conference coincides with the publication of a report from De Beers exploring the socio-economic contribution to Botswana of its longstanding partnership with the Government. The report, which looks back over the history of the partnership and the economic contribution it made in 2014, shows that:Between 1966 and 2014, Botswana’s GDP per capita grew at an average of 5.9% per year – the third highest rate anywhere in the world over this period – delivering real and lasting benefits for the country. Before independence:There were only three secondary schools in Botswana. Now there are more than 300 and every child receives free schooling up to the age of 13There were just 5 km of tarmac road across the country. Now there are nearly 6,000 kmThere was one doctor for every 48,000 people. Now there is one for every 3,000 people. Hon. Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Kitso Onkokame Mokaila, said: “We are delighted to co-host this conference. Our stewardship of Botswana’s precious diamond resource has created huge opportunities for the country. As diamonds have brought about significant national economic growth, we look forward to sharing our experiences and continuing the conversation on future development opportunities.”Philippe Mellier, CEO, De Beers Group, said: “Societies across the world are increasingly – and rightly – demanding more value from their natural resources. Our partnership with Botswana is one of the world’s most enduring and successful private-public partnerships, delivering significant benefits to the country. However, it is not a panacea and we look forward to exploring the lessons learnt and how these can be applied for the long-term prosperity not only of Botswana, but also for the benefit of other resource-rich nations around the globe.”Dr Alex Vines OBE, Head of Africa Program, Chatham House, said: “I have seen how diamond revenues have not been drivers of equitable growth or tools for economic diversification in a number of countries. Botswana can make its diamonds a catalyst for change and this conference will help showcase ideas on how this can be done.” In 2014, the Partnership, through direct, indirect and induced impacts, has:Generated more than $4 billion of value to the Botswana economy, which is equivalent to more than 25% of GDP – double that of the entire wholesale and retail sectorsContributed thousands of jobs in Botswana and spent around $6 million on more than half a million hours of training for its employeesIn addition, De Beers’ relocation of its multi-billion dollar international sales operation from London to Botswana contributed more than $400 million to GDP, along with an increase in jobs and supply chain spend.
When the Taliban first started in 1996 it wanted nothing to do with modern technology. Fast forward 15 years, and the Islamic militia group is now jumping on the Twitter bandwagon. Yes, the Taliban is tweeting.When the Guardian published its story yesterday, the Taliban’s Twitter feed, @alemarahweb, had 224 followers. At the time of publication for this story, the feed now only has 108, losing more than half of its followers within hours. The feed tweets propaganda-esque reports of attacks against the “infidel forces” and the regime of Afghan President Hamid Karzai.Most of the tweets are in Pashtu, which Google Translate unfortunately does not translate into English. The feed was actually started in December. All the tweets were in Pashtu until yesterday when the first English-language tweets appeared. The latest tweet informs its followers that “11 US-NATO invaders killed, 11 were wounded…” All of the tweets in English seem to be about how many people were killed in various attacks, and we wonder if all the tweets on the feed are that way, or if it’s only the ones written in English. The Twitter feed can actually be useful since the official Taliban website is often shut down by authorities and is switching servers all the time.Most of the tweets link to a news story on the Taliban’s Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan website. The Taliban encourages its fighters to do phone interviews, and it’s usually speedy about emailing its version of news events. Also, let’s not forget all the propaganda videos the group produces. However, with all this material, it seems the Taliban is a little upset that it’s not getting the media attention it thinks it should. According to the Guardian, the Taliban wrote an email in December complaining that the media covers less than 10 percent of the material that the Taliban sends, and the group would like to get more press. Using social media is just one way for the militia group to actually get its news out there, whether or not anyone is reading it.As the saying goes, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Evidenced by a few of the accounts that the Taliban Twitter follows, the Taliban is keeping tabs on some unlikely Twitter handles. No, it’s not following Ashton or Bieber, the very first feed that @alemarahweb followed was that of @Afghantim, whose bio says he is a US Air Force Logistics Readiness Officer currently deployed as a combat advisor to the Afghan Army. The Taliban site is also following @AfghanHeroesUK, which is a charity that supports British troops in Afghanistan.Will the Taliban’s Twitter help it get the attention it so desperately wants? Perhaps the number of followers will increase after news breaks of the @alemarahweb account finally writing posts in English. It’ll be interesting to see if the account get’s an official verified “check” by its name.Read more at The Guardian
Stay on target The Xbox One X Looks Nice, But Twice as Nice as the Xbox One?Super Mario Odyssey and Other E3 Nintendo Switch Games That Aren’t Zelda As one of, like, three games Activision still makes (if you don’t count Blizzard) there’s a lot riding on the success of each year’s new Call of Duty. It’s kind of crazy then that a return to the traditional, European Theater, World War II first-person shooting that defined the franchise over a decade ago is now this crazy, bold risk. But Battlefield 1 worked and given today’s political climate perhaps we need Call of Duty and Wolfenstein to remind us that Nazis are the bad guys. At E3, I got to check out Call of Duty: WWII.The appointment began with a theater presentation for the single-player campaign. This year’s game is being developed by Sledgehammer Games, the studio’s second CoD after the well-received Advanced Warfare. Sledgehammer’s co-founder Glen Schofield was one of the primary creative forces behind Dead Space. As the typical military bombast of a Call of Duty campaign gruesomely played out in front of me, I did notice a more horrific bent to the fast, intense, violent, and cinematic military action. War is Hell, after all.As the player character fought across the ruined town-turned battlefield, he seemed to have more freedom with how he could approach the fight. The new health system, which relies on health packs instead of waiting for health to regenerate, seemed to encourage more tactical play. However, the later half of the demo became much more linear and scripted as the player escaped a collapsing church, following their commanding officer like in most other CoD campaigns. At least the spectacle looks nice.After the video, we then got to play two of Call of Duty: WWII‘s multiplayer modes. The first mode was a standard team deathmatch and if you told me it was a prettied-up remake of an older game, as a casual observer of the series I might have believed you. Players choose between different classes with different load outs and kill streaks. I opted for a dude with a shotgun that fired incendiary rounds. It was fun virtual paintball as Call of Duty always is, but it wasn’t exactly revolutionary. Even the health goes back to a regeneration system for multiplayer.The next mode, though, was much more exciting. “War” mode adds objectives and narrative to the team battles, basically turning Call of Duty into Overwatch. As a female infantry soldier, I helped my team raid a Nazi outpost for intel, build a bridge into their base, plant a bomb, and nearly escort a tank to victory. Afterward, we switched to the defending team and stopped our opponents from accomplishing even half of what we had achieved. Objectives frequently lasted until the final seconds, making each encounter incredibly tense in a great way. Every move mattered. Plus, even if you die a lot, you still feel like you contributed by building part of the bridge or distracting enemies from the target. Add in Call of Duty‘s typical progression and leveling systems and even a losing team can find the fight worthwhile. Making multiplayer about more than just who shoots the best is always a good thing in my book.As crazy as it sounds, I also dug the almost novelty of Call of Duty: World War II’s older setting. The increasingly vague modern and near-future Call of Duty games felt like they had lost their identity. When you’re jumping with rocket jets and shooting laser guns, isn’t that just Patriotic Halo? I don’t know if the WWII novelty can last for a whole new era of the franchise or just this one game, but that’s the next year’s team’s problem. I just hope there’s a celebrity guest yet to reveal like Kevin Spacey in Advanced Warfare. Heck, just put Kevin Spacey in this one, too. I bet he plays a mean Nazi. Call of Duty: World War II launches this November because of course it does.
The two people killed in a stabbing early Sunday morning have been positively identified and their families have been notified of their deaths.The names of the homicide victims, 42-year-old Thomas West and 55-year-old James Olsen, were included in court records released Monday following the first appearance of the suspect in the double-homicide, Dustin Lee Zapel, 35.However, Vancouver Police Department spokeswoman Kim Kapp told The Columbian on Monday that the families of those killed had not been notified of their deaths and their names were withheld from the news story.The police agency announced Tuesday morning that the families of the victims had been notified. A third surviving victim was identified in court records as David Garner, 51.All of the men reportedly lived at the Central Park Place Apartments, which is on the Portland VA Vancouver Medical Center campus and is a transitional housing program for people who are low-income, homeless or at risk of being homeless. It is managed and operated by the Vancouver Housing Authority.
Approximately 20,000 hunters will head afield beginning Saturday for the start of deer season in Southwest Washington and they will find widespread closures of private forest lands due to fire danger.Ironically, the weather forecast is for a chance of rain on Friday and rain likely on Saturday.Among the private timber holdings closed to all public access include Weyerhaeuser’s 422,000-acre St. Helens Tree Farm; 260,000 acres in eastern Skamania, Klickitat and southern Yakima counties; 321,000 acres of Longview Timber Corp. (formerly Longview Fibre) land, and the 85,000-acre Ryderwood Tree Farm in Cowlitz and Lewis counties.Weyerhaeuser 1-866-636-6531Ryderwood Tree Farm 1-360-623-1299Longview Timber Corp. 1-360-442-7619Closed lands in Skamania and Klickitat counties include those of Hancock Forest Management, Broughton Lumber Co., Western Pacific Timber LLC and Stevenson Land Co.Hancock will allow walk-in hunting on its Wahkiakum County lands, according to David Boyd of the company’s lower Columbia region.The access closures began in mid-August.“We never dreamed this would drag on to effect our hunting seasons,” said Wayne Vinyard, area manager for Hancock Forest Management in Glenwood. “We hate to do this. We know people plan their whole year to go hunting.”He said he has only seen it this dry a couple of other times in the past 40 years.“Despite the shorter days and cooler temperatures, the fire danger is still as high as it was in August,” he said.Vinyard and Patrick Allen of Sierra Pacific Industries, operator of Ryderwood Tree Farm, both said about an inch of rain needs to fall to wet the forests adequately.