Darjeeling: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha on Tuesday declared the name of party president Binay Tamang as the candidate for the Assembly by-elections in Darjeeling. If Tamang wins, he has been promised the Ministry of Hill Affairs, declared GJM leaders.A central committee meeting was held in Darjeeling on Tuesday, along with the frontal organisations of GJM. Later while talking to media persons, Tshering Dahal, president, Gorkha Janmukti Nari Morcha (GJNM), said: “The meeting unanimously decided on the candidature of Binay Tamang. If he wins he will be given the Ministry of Hill Affairs. In the present political scenario, it is very vital that the Hill maintains a diplomatic relation with the state government.” Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe poll plank of the GJM will be land documents (parja patta), development, minimum wages and employment. “Majority of the people in the Hills do not have land documents. The BJP has launched a conspiracy, whereby they will be implementing the NRC. They are trying to prove us as immigrants of 1950. To counter this, we should have the land documents,” stated Dahal. The GJM has assured that land documents will be handed over by 2020. Other than this, the upgradation of Darjeeling Municipality into a corporation, creation of Sonada and Sukhia Municipality and upgradation of Bijanbari block into a sub division are also on the cards. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayAt present, Tamang is the chairman, board of administrators, Gorkhaland Territorial Administration. “Under him and Anit Thapa, the development that the Hills have witnessed in the past 17 months, has been phenomenal,” added Dahal. Tamang will be filing his nomination on April 26. Darjeeling will go to polls on May 19 and the results will be declared on May 23. TMC will not take part in the poll fray but will be supporting Tamang. Jan Andolan Party has declared Amar Lama as the party candidate for the Assembly by-election.
A German Catholic leader was forced to apologise Wednesday over comments that sparked indignation among the country’s Muslim community and proponents of a multicultural society.Cologne Archbishop Joachim Meisner, 80, had praised the high birth rate of many Catholics, telling followers: “I always say, one of your families to me makes up for three Muslim families”.Bekir Alboga of the Turkish-Islamic Union Ditib said the comments promote “fear and misunderstanding”, telling broadcaster Deutsche Welle that “we need a bridge-builder, not a polariser.” Many politicians also strongly rejected the comments, among them Sylvia Loehrmann, state education minister of North Rhine-Westphalia where Cologne is located.“Rating the relative value of families and therefore children by origin or religious affiliation not only violates our constitution, it is also anything but Christian,” she said.The archbishop — who has in the past likened abortion to Nazi crimes — later said he regretted having caused “irritation” and that “it was not my intention to offend people of other faiths”.“My choice of words in this case was perhaps unfortunate,” said Meisner, who is expected to retire next month.“I have repeatedly said that Muslim families are setting a good example in our ageing society.”
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — These days, the news about local news seems relentlessly bad:Newsroom employment, down by nearly half over the past 15 years. Waves of layoffs continuing to hit both traditional newspaper chains and digital news startups. Cities and towns so denuded of coverage that they’re described as “news deserts .”But then, there’s The Berkshire Eagle.The western Massachusetts daily has an expanded investigative team. There’s a new 12-page lifestyle section for the Eagle’s Sunday editions. There’s a new monthly magazine focusing on the area’s culinary and natural charms. There’s an advisory board that includes cellist Yo-Yo Ma and Pulitzer-winning writer Elizabeth Kolbert.The newspaper is wider, its paper thicker. There’s even a second daily crossword puzzle.The Eagle’s revival started three years ago, when four investors with deep pockets and ties to the Berkshires took a leap of faith. They bought it and its three sister Vermont publications from a hedge fund-backed media chain with a reputation for cost-cutting tactics that squeeze profits from struggling newspapers while leaving a diminished staff; the chain has defended its strategy as a way to ensure that local newspapers can survive financially.Since the purchase, a hiring flurry has brought more than 50 new jobs to the Eagle and its sister papers.It’s easy to get carried away — the Eagle is still struggling, and its survival is far from assured. Readers are trickling, not flocking, back.But if it does fail, it won’t be for lack of effort. The Eagle’s owners, editors and staff are waging an all-out campaign to revitalize local journalism in the Berkshires and southern Vermont.“I want our newspaper to love its readers. And I want its readers to love the newspapers back,” said executive editor Kevin Moran, before resorting to a journalist’s black humour: “Because if they don’t have an emotional connection to the newspaper, they are not going to cry when you are gone.”Fredric Rutberg has always had that kind of connection to the Eagle — which is why he has put his body, soul and cash into its rescue.Rutberg, a local district judge who was looking for a second act as he neared retirement, pulled together the group of investors who bought the Eagle in the spring of 2016 from Digital First Media, also knowns as MNG Enterprises.Rutberg, 73, relishes his role as newspaper owner, publisher and president. He hosts intimate gatherings with readers called “Coffee with the President,” promoting the newspaper’s triumphs, including award-winning investigative coverage of the Berkshire Museum’s controversial sale of artworks, the decaying state of the region’s bridges and the struggle to bring broadband internet to rural communities.From his office at Eagle headquarters, he fields phone calls from readers complaining if the newspaper is delivered late or too far from the driveway.“They are always shocked when I answer the phone,” said Rutberg, who finally decided to ride along one night with a delivery truck driver and write a column to explain the demands of the job.Another time, he ended up being the highlight of a chatty Eagle story on favourite kitchen gadgets, posing for a photo with onion glasses and a slightly sheepish grin.All the while, he regularly travels to Vermont to visit the sister newspapers. He pursues strategies for revenue diversification: The newspaper is developing an in-house ad-agency and hosts paid events, including high school sports galas and a “Conversation Series” that bring experts to discuss topics from faith in politics to the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.For Moran, this level of involvement is a thrilling contrast to the Eagle’s former corporate owners. During a rare visit from them in 2015, the agenda was mostly budget cuts.Shortly afterward, Moran said, he oversaw the layoffs of 19 people at the four newspapers, one of his lowest moments in a two-decade career spent rising through the ranks of the Eagle and its affiliated newspapers. The year before, 18 positions had already been cut.“You see this foundation, this whole pillar of your community, start to break apart,” Moran said.___Rutberg and his three partners seized a short window of opportunity when Alden Global Capital was putting several of its newspapers up for sale following failed negotiations to sell off the company’s media properties, known as Digital First Media, to a private equity firm. The sale returned the Berkshire Eagle to local ownership for the first time since 1995, when the debt-saddled Miller family that had run it for more than a century first sold it to a media chain.Today, Rutberg and co-owner Hans Morris, a former president of Visa, are forging ahead without two of their original partners. Stanford Lipsey, a longtime newspaper publisher, died in November 2016, with his share passing to his wife, Judi Lipsey. Former M&T Bank CEO Robert Wilmers died in December 2017.The year before, Wilmers had declared the goal of building “the finest group of community newspapers” in the country. And the new owners swiftly made changes that reflected their frustrations as Eagle readers, down to replacing thin newsprint that curled in humid weather and was unbecoming of a newspaper that won a Pulitzer for editorial writing in 1973.Moran was suddenly scrambling to add staff.Rutberg and his partners wanted a “world-class” arts and culture section worthy of a region that boasts the Jacob’s Pillow dance centre, a theatre scene that lures Hollywood stars and Tanglewood, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.Under the corporate owners, the features staff had been whittled down to two editors, who relied on syndicated stories on food and gardening to fill out pages that were shared with the Vermont papers.Now, features editor Lindsey Hollenbaugh oversees a staff of seven. She launched Landscapes, the 12-page lifestyle section that includes only local stories, aside from The New York Times bestseller list. Landscapes has taken readers to a theatre rehearsal with actor Jon Hamm, followed around a pizza delivery driver on the coldest night of the year and explained how on-duty firefighters weave grocery shopping into their shifts.“Suddenly, I had all the freedom in the world with very few constraints,” said Hollenbaugh, who first joined the Berkshire Eagle in 2010. “We feel like we won the lottery.”The expanded investigative team gives voice to overlooked communities in the Berkshires, the hilly, westernmost region of Massachusetts, where 130,000 people are scattered across 30-plus towns and villages.Geographic differences make the Berkshires a challenge to cover. Some towns are New England charmers that draw artists and New York City tourists, including Rutberg’s town of Stockbridge, home to the Norman Rockwell Museum. Others, such as the main city of Pittsfield, are still struggling with the ripple effects of losing thousands of jobs when major employer General Electric gradually packed up and left in the 1980s and ’90s, hastening a population loss that shows no signs of slowing.The Eagle strives to be indispensable to all those communities, and its reporters say that effort is being reflected in the story requests they get from readers.Exasperated residents from rural Sandisfield led reporter Heather Bellow to investigate a pipeline company’s failure to live up to a 2-year-old promise to fix a rural road , so damaged that tar stuck to the feet of dogs and people. Text messages from anguished neighbours prodded her to keep pushing for answers about a fire that killed a family of five in the town of Sheffield, long after the tragedy faded from national headlines.The hard part is persuading the people of the Berkshires to pay for this type of in-depth coverage.“Our business plan was simply to increase the quality of the content and attract new readers,” Rutberg said. “We’ve made more than a bona fide effort at the first part. We are in the second right now, and the jury’s out.”___The Berkshire Eagle’s overall paid circulation fell more than 20 per cent during the first year under new ownership, before key initiatives such as Landscapes were launched. Rutberg counts it as an achievement that circulation remained mostly stable the second year, at more than 15,000 on weekdays and nearly 18,000 on Sundays, still half what it was a decade ago.On the bright side, digital subscriptions are finally ticking up.“In our industry, flat is the new black,” Rutberg says cheerfully, his go-to catchphrase when anyone asks about circulation.Like many newspapers, the Berkshire Eagle increasingly relies on revenue from paid subscriptions, as major advertisers migrate to online giants such as Facebook and Google. Rutberg said the Eagle has suffered from the decline of the Berkshire Mall, which saw key retailers J.C. Penney, Macy’s and Best Buy leave over the past four years, taking their ad dollars with them.One thing Rutberg said he can’t do is pass the cost of his heftier newspaper onto readers because of a price hike by the previous owner. Digital First Media raised the cost of home delivery service by 60 per cent in 2014 to $300 a year, even as the paper grew thinner.Through a spokeswoman, Molly Curry, Digital First declined to comment for this story. In the past, Digital First has countered criticism of its tactics, saying it runs “newspapers profitably and sustainably so that they can continue to serve their local communities.”In a letter earlier this year to U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, the company’s chairman noted that advertising and circulation declines were threatening the newspaper industry generally. But he said Digital First, also known as MNG Enterprises, believes in the industry “and we know how to operate successful newspaper businesses over the long term.”It remains to be seen how sustainable the expanded Eagle will be under its new owners.The newspaper charges $13 a month for a digital-only subscription, letting people read three articles online before hitting the pay wall. Social media drives a third of the newspaper’s digital traffic, a double-edged sword because many readers bristle at being asked to pay for content they see on Facebook.“I just don’t have time to sit down and read an entire newspaper. I’m on Facebook 10 minutes a day; I’m not going to get $13 worth of news,” said Jenna Lanphear, a 40-year-old Pittsfield beauty salon owner, applying lemon nail polish for Amy Sinico, a day care centre director who also does not subscribe.“It’s very frustrating,” Sinico chimed in. “When they put a link on Facebook and then you click on it to read more about it, but you can’t because you have to buy the subscription. Don’t put the link on Facebook then.”A recent Pew Research Center study found this to be typical. Only 14% of American adults said they had paid for local news within the past year, via subscription, donation or membership.Half the respondents noted that free content is available to them. In the Berkshires, Lanphear and Sinico pointed out, people can get news for free from television, radio and two digital news sites, the Berkshire Edge and iBerkshires.com.Lanphear did sign up her 13-year-old daughter for a summit of high school journalists organized by the Berkshire Eagle’s education reporter, Jenn Smith — one of many efforts the Eagle is making to re-establish itself as the centre of civic life and deepen its interaction with readers.Smith, for example, takes nominations from parents and teachers for a “Classroom of the Week” column. She visits each class for the story then drives back to deliver a frameable poster of her column and a gift certificate for teaching materials.And earlier this year, the Eagle invited high schoolers to organize and moderate one of its “Conversation Series.”The idea came from Marie Butler and Jordan Bradford, two Pittsfield High School juniors who attended a “Conversation” on faith and politics last fall only to be disappointed by the lack of diversity among the panelists (three white men) and the audience (mostly white and older).Bradford and Butler say most of their classmates are preoccupied with the news, which they follow on the smartphones they never part with. On Twitter, they follow NPR, President Donald Trump, social activists and a few of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates. Last year, hundreds of Pittsfield High School students walked out of class after the shooting that killed 17 people in Parkland, Florida.“Since our generation has a lot of access to the internet, the politics that happens in our government is kind of right in our faces,” Bradford said.That kind of enthusiasm doesn’t automatically translate into new readers for a local paper like the Eagle.Bradford’s parents don’t subscribe, although they pick up the paper when their star swimmer daughter makes the sports pages. Butler regularly reads the newspaper because her parents get it delivered, but she doesn’t know anyone else who does.“I’m definitely alone in that arena,” she said.___The newspaper is experimenting with ways to promote itself as a source of unique stories about the Berkshires.Its online editor, Noah Hoffenberg, found that traffic from Facebook to the Eagle’s digital site increased when he posted fewer stories and opinion pieces about national politics, which had been triggering negative comments and accusations of bias.Rick Edmonds, a media business analyst for the Poynter Institute, said it’s good practice for a local newspaper to market itself as a refuge from the divisiveness of national politics. But he said people invariably turn to television and radio for basic information, eroding the perception that newspapers are indispensable.“Weather and traffic — some people find that is the only news they care about it. If they are getting that, they may not be revved up to pay for a local newspaper,” Edmonds said.Some people might also take their local newspaper for granted: The Pew poll found that 71 per cent of Americans believe their local news outlets are doing very or somewhat well financially, when in fact many newspapers are struggling to survive.Moran said it is not lost on anyone at the Berkshire Eagle that “we are trying to swim upstream.”Independently owned newspapers are becoming a thing of the past. Of the 1,200 newspapers that have been sold in the last five years, most were owned by families or small private chains, according to a study by Penelope Muse Abernathy, a University of North Carolina professor whose research on the subject gave rise to the term “news desert.”In May, New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet bleakly predicted the demise of “most local newspapers in America” within five years, except for ones bought by billionaires. The Washington Post and Los Angeles Times, both national publications, are thriving after being bought by billionaires. The Boston Globe, Minneapolis Star-Tribune and Las Vegas Review-Journal are among other major American newspapers that appear to have steadied themselves after being sold to local wealthy individuals.For many other newspapers, especially smaller ones, the future prospects are uncertain.In January, Rutberg wrote a column in the Eagle appealing for several hundred new subscribers.He made the same appeal at a trendy cafe in Pittsfield during a recent “Coffee with the President,” his second in a week. His audience was mostly middle age and older, not surprising in a place like the Berkshires, which has struggled to hold on to its working-age population.A few younger customers poked their heads in while Rutberg spoke, then backed away, coffees in hand.The older audience promptly brought up newspaper delivery. One man approvingly noted his paper has been arriving on time and launched into a discussion about tipping drivers. Another worried about how the city’s new ban on single-use plastic bags would affect the bundling of the papers.Rutberg patiently assured them that the newspaper would visit their homes to install green plastic tubes where the paper can be inserted, something he said the old owners had stopped doing.Days earlier, he was still glowing after a trip to Boston to accept the JFK Commonwealth Award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, which The Berkshire Eagle won for its commitment to community journalism, a vindication of his late partner Bob Wilmer’s dream.“We are going to stick with this,” Rutberg said. “This is our commitment as long as humanly possible.”___Follow Alexandra Olson at https://twitter.com/Alexolson99Alexandra Olson, The Associated Press
26 March 2007Opening a new immigration office in a provincial capital in Liberia’s west, a senior United Nations envoy to the country today stressed that cross-border traffic in small arms, light weapons and rebels continues to threaten peace and stability in West Africa. Jordan Ryan, the Secretary-General’s Deputy Special Representative for Recovery and Governance, called for a comprehensive peace and security strategy for the region as he launched the office in Tubmanburg, capital of Bomi County.“Liberia is no longer the heart of instability in the region,” he said, according to a press release issued by the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL). “The country is making great strides in securing peace and stability, but there are regional challenges of potential threats of cross-border movements of small arms and light weapons, as well as rebels.”Mr. Ryan said regional peace will only be sustainable if the borders of individual countries are effectively policed.The $23,000 immigration office opened by Mr. Ryan was funded by UNMIL’s Quick Impact Projects as part of the Mission’s efforts to rebuild the immigration and naturalization bureau, whose facilities were largely destroyed during the country’s devastating civil war between 1989 and 2003.Liberia has approximately 176 entry points along its borders with Sierra Leone, Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire, but only 36 are staffed by immigration officers, according to the bureau.Mr. Ryan also handed over the Bomi County office of Liberia’s ministry of gender and development to county authorities after a $14,000 renovation funded by the Quick Impact Projects scheme.On Saturday, in the town of Caldwell, located near the national capital, Monrovia, Mr. Ryan opened Liberia’s first youth peace-building centre, again funded under the Quick Impacts Projects scheme.The centre will offer peer-to-peer education about peace, vocational skills training, computer training, youth-led community development projects, literacy courses, health education and HIV/AIDS awareness programmes.
A senior diplomat from India has been appointed to lead the United Nations presence in East Timor after the territory gains independence on 20 May.Kamalesh Sharma, the current Permanent Representative of India to the UN in New York, will succeed Sergio Vieira de Mello on 21 May as Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Special Representative for East Timor. In that capacity, Ambassador Sharma will also lead the successor mission to the current UN Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET).In a letter addressed to the President of the Security Council released today at UN Headquarters in New York, the Secretary-General expresses his “sincere appreciation for [Mr. Vieira de Mello’s] exceptional leadership of UNTAET.”
“We plan to keep a minimum presence in each of the three field offices of Bahai, Iriba and Guereda to ensure assistance to the refugees continues and to monitor the situation,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) spokesperson Jennifer Pagonis told a news briefing in Geneva, referring to the three worst affected areas. The overall situation for 218,000 Darfurian refugees and 90,000 displaced Chadians took a serious turn for the worse some 10 days ago when the town of Abeche, hub for relief efforts, was first occupied by rebel forces and then re-taken by Government troops.During the turmoil the main UN relief supply warehouses were pillaged, reportedly by local residents. The precariousness of the security situation for UN staff was underlined by an incident during military activity in Guereda on Friday, when four armed men forced their way into UNHCR’s compound, threatened the staff at gunpoint and stole two vehicles. So far, over 200 humanitarian staff have been relocated from Abeche. “We plan to use Abeche as a base to send mobile teams of our staff and partner NGO staff to the northern camps for a couple of days as security permits,” Ms. Pagonis said. The UN World Food Programme (WFP) also warned that its operations were becoming increasingly difficult, with periodic fighting forcing it to temporarily suspend all non-emergency activities in parts of the troubled region, affecting at least 56,000 Chadians who would normally benefit. “There are hundreds of thousands of people – refugees from Sudan and Chadians – who depend on us for their daily needs,” WFP Country Director Felix Bamezon said. “WFP and our partners have a huge job to do. For that we need a measure of calm to return – at present the situation is too volatile for our staff to work normally.” WFP lost 483 metric tons of food when its warehouses in Abeche was looted. The UN World Health Organization (WHO) also reported that its operations were being hampered by the growing unrest. Its staff stationed in Abeche, including three internationals, have expertise in emergency response and fighting epidemics. There are 110,000 refugees from Darfur in six camps in the three worst affected areas. All essential international and local staff of UN agencies operating there are scheduled to be relocated to Abeche or the Chadian capital N’Djamena. “UN agencies are working with their operational partners to ensure vital services such as primary health, access to water and distribution of food are maintained in the camps,” Ms. Pagonis said. “Contingency plans are being activated with pre-positioning of supplies so the six camps directly affected by the staff reduction can run themselves for about one month.” This process got under way yesterday at Mile and Kounoungo camps near Guereda. Humanitarian teams are meeting refugee leaders to keep them informed of the reductions and the measures necessary for each camp to keep functioning. Some 54 people are needed to keep both camps working with basic assistance. These tasks will be performed by partner NGO staff as well as by designated refugees. The same measures are being put into place for camps around Bahai and Iriba. UNHCR has recovered at least 50 per cent of the $1.3-million worth of relief items looted from its main warehouse in Abeche.
Fed survey: Economic growth picks up across most of the United States as harsh winter recedes by Paul Wiseman, The Associated Press Posted Apr 16, 2014 12:22 pm MDT WASHINGTON – A Federal Reserve survey shows economic growth picking up across most of the United States over the past two months as bitter winter weather subsided.Ten of the Fed’s 12 regions reported an increase in economic activity, according to the Beige Book survey released Wednesday. In most places, the Fed described the improvement as “modest or moderate.” Only Cleveland and St. Louis reported slower growth.In March and early April, consumers took advantage of better weather to go shopping. Manufacturing expanded across most of the U.S. Ports and highways were busier. Across most of the country, home prices rose modestly and homebuilding picked up. Tourism was “generally positive.” In several districts, ski resorts reported record years.The Beige Book, which is published eight times a year, is based on anecdotal reports from businesses and will be considered along with other data when Fed policymakers meet April 29-30. Confident that the economy is improving, the Fed has been scaling back bond purchases meant to push long-term interest rates down, encourage consumer and business spending and spur economic growth.Economists are hoping that growth will pick up as the weather gets warmer. Despite a slow, chilly start this year, the economy is expected to grow 3 per cent this year, the fastest pace since 2005, two years before the Great Recession hit.“Beneath all the snow and ice — and there was still some in March — the economy is coming back,” says John Canally, economist at LPL Financial. “Overall, (the Beige Book) says the economy is poised to reaccelerate.”The job market has steadily recovered. Employers added a healthy 192,000 jobs in March and 197,000 in February. The economy has now regained all the private sector jobs it lost during the Great Recession. On Wednesday, the Fed also reported that U.S. factory output rose further last month, extending strong growth from February after harsh weather had caused production to tumble in January.Still, the news is not all good. A government report on housing construction Wednesday was weaker than economists had hoped for. And the outlook for homebuilding was clouded by a drop last month in applications for building permits. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email
Photo by Tyson ChappellBy Cory McKendrick, USU Eastern Sports Information ContributorThe USU Eastern women’s soccer team opened the 2019 season with an unofficial scrimmage against Western Wyoming Community College. The two matched up last preseason with USU Eastern beating Western Wyoming 3-1 in Rock Springs, Wyo. The Eagles showed an offensive explosion in the match on Thursday, Aug. 15 with a lopsided score of 6-1.Coach Ammon Bennett mentioned in a previous article published that, “these preseason scrimmages are very important to us. We expect to see the girls apply practice principles and philosophies in a game environment, and to see what kind of different lineup combinations will mesh well together for the future.”The game featured a very spread offensive assault with six different players chalking a goal to open their season and one player with three assists. Logan Duran (sophomore, forward), Morgan Cragun (sophomore, midfield) and Atley Thompson (freshman, midfield) each scored goals, all of which were assisted by Ashley Brindley (freshman, forward). Claire Boman (sophomore, forward) scored, assisted by Brooklyn Anderson (freshman, midfield). Morgan Haag (freshman, forward) and Sadie Utley (freshman, forward) each scored goals that were unassisted in the match.The Eagles gained a lead early and never looked back, maintaining the lead and extending it throughout the course of the match. The defense played close to flawless, allowing only one goal. Megan Edwards (freshman, goal keeper) was in goal for the Eagles.
Source: ESPN Stats & Information Group 32,67245.0+0.12 Source: ESPN Stats & Information Group Play-action is more effective, especially with fewer receiversExpected points added (EPA) by the number of eligible receivers in route, for play-action plays vs. all other dropbacks, 2017-18 regular seasons If your goal is to fool your opponent into thinking you’re going to run the ball, bringing in a bunch of players who look like blockers is probably a good idea. That’s an intuitive finding that makes sense. Meanwhile, it’s also heartening to see that adding eligible receivers to the route design of a non-play-action passing play leads to greater passing efficiency. That’s also a finding that we’d expect — the more passing options the better!It’s no surprise that play-action continues to show up as one of the most efficient play types in football. Analysts have been calling it the NFL’s corner three for years. But it’s still somewhat shocking to see just how pervasive and massive an effect a little deception can have on the success of an offense. It will be interesting to see how much play-action the Cardinals incorporate into their attack moving forward. With a healthy dose, along with the ability to successfully flood the field with wide receivers over the course of 16 games, Arizona shouldn’t stay near the bottom of our Elo rankings for long.Check out our latest NFL predictions. 42,78350.6+0.216,17142.5+0.01 2 or fewer1,20139.0-0.03 Based on success rate2The share of those plays with a positive EPA. and EPA per play, the optimum number of receivers to send out into routes is three. NFL rules dictate that five receivers at most can report as eligible to catch a pass on any given play,3The sixth non-lineman must pass the ball and is normally referred to as the quarterback. so this finding would appear to support passing out of heavy sets with big tight ends staying home to help shore up the pass blocking. Or perhaps teams should keep a running back in the backfield to help chip rushing defenders. But it also could be that those heavier sets are effective because of the deception they afford via the play-action pass.To find out, we broke out all plays by the number of receivers and then split the plays by play-action and non-play-action. When we look at the plays this way, we find that play-action accounts for all the efficiency we see from the plays with three or fewer receivers. When play-action snaps are removed, passes with three or fewer receivers have a negative expected value leaguewide. 31,43848.8+0.221,13040.3-0.01 New Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury and Arizona have brought a variant of the Hal Mumme Air Raid to the NFL, and while the Cardinals didn’t earn a Week 1 win — they tied the Detroit Lions in their home opener — the system lived up to its billing. Known for its spread concepts and heavy use of the forward pass, the Air Raid relies on a smart, accurate passer to distribute the ball to a bevy of playmakers sent into routes that attack all areas of the field. And spread they did. With first overall pick Kyler Murray running the offense, the Cardinals trotted out more four wide receiver sets (45) on Sunday than the rest of the NFL combined (36).Clearly Kingsbury isn’t afraid to be different, but it comes with risks. Going four-wide is an approach that hasn’t typically paid off for NFL offenses. In the 2017 and 2018 seasons, NFL teams ran 1,185 plays from four-WR sets and ended up stubbing their toes. Over that fairly large sample, the expected points added per play across the league was negative, at -0.03 EPA per play. Meanwhile, teams found success featuring fewer wideouts, averaging positive EPA per play numbers with their personnel groups of two and three wide receivers.1Two-WR formations earned 0.04 EPA play, while three-WR formations earned 0.02 EPA play.[/footnote.That pattern continued in Week 1: Teams averaged -0.03 EPA per play on passes with four wide receivers — right in line with the two-year average.[footnote]On 86 dropbacks. As we saw, the Cardinals were responsible for the majority of those plays, though, so it’s encouraging they performed slightly better than the league mean, earning -0.01 EPA per play.The Air Raid encompasses a set of passing concepts that many teams have integrated into their schemes, so it’s not completely new. Andy Reid of the Chiefs incorporated parts of the Air Raid into his system to suit the specific strengths of Patrick Mahomes, Kingsbury’s former QB at Texas Tech. But the difference for the Cardinals may be in the details. Kingsbury used wide splits and 3×1 wide receiver sets often to stress the Lions defense with his four wideouts, and Murray improved as the game went on. Perhaps they have what it takes to make four-wide in the NFL successful.But we also wondered: Wide receivers aside, does a team having more eligible receivers running routes lead to more production in the NFL? Or do offenses benefit when players stay in to protect their QB? Is adding more receivers to a play ineffective?Expected points added (EPA) per play by number of eligible receivers running routes, for 2017-18 regular-season plays ≤ 242353.6+0.4276438.3-0.05 Number of RoutesDropbacksSuccess RateEPA per play 49,41944.9+0.07 525,73944.8%+0.04 Routesdropbackssuccess rateepa per playdropbackssuccess rateepa per play 52,75349.0+0.1522,48244.3%+0.03 play-actionnon-play-action
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedRenewable energy, cultural exchange MOUs to be signed at Guyana/India Joint Commission meetingJanuary 30, 2018In “latest news”Greenidge to lead Guyana’s delegation to IndiaJanuary 25, 2018In “Greenidge to head Guyana’s delegation to India”Guyana signs loan agreements with China to upgrade Broadband, build Public Service CollegeSeptember 22, 2018In “Business” The Governments of Guyana and Haiti have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to deepen collaboration in areas of tourism, agriculture and other economic and social sectors.Guyana’s Second Vice President and Foreign Affairs Minister, Carl Greenidge and his Haitian counterpart, Antonio Rodrigues during the signing ceremony.According to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, today, The agreement was signed by Second Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carl Greenidge and his Haitian counterpart, Mr Antonio Rodrigues.The MOU provides a framework for the deepening of collaboration between Guyana and Haiti in the areas of tourism, agriculture, water management, forestry, food security and other sectors facilitating the economic and social development of the two countries.A Joint Commission will be established to implement the agreement and give further impetus to the bilateral relationship.The first meeting of the Commission is expected to take place within six months of the entry into force of the Agreement and thereafter, the Commission is expected to meet annually, or as otherwise agreed, the statement added.
DRUG DEALING IN Dublin City Centre has once again come into sharp focus. Garda operations are currently in force north (Operation Spire) and south (Operation Pier) of the Liffey clamping down on anti-social behaviour. Indeed, anti-social behaviour and a perception of Dublin’s streets as unsafe are a perennial problem in the capital, with drug use and drug dealing often involved.In this regard, media and public reaction to the Garda operations have largely been positive. However, it is important to recognise that the Gardaí are currently limited in what they can do, since much of the visible drug dealing in Dublin City centre involves benzodiazepines. As the law currently stands, such drugs are exempt from the provisions of section 3 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977, which creates the offence of possession. However, this is set to change – a proposed amendment to existing legislation will, among other things, criminalise possession of such drugs. This means that the Gardaí will be better equipped to address city centre dealing.What effect will this new legislation have? There is little doubt that it will impact on the circulation of illicit benzodiazepines. In 2010, the Criminal Justice (Psychoactive Substances) Act was introduced, largely in response to rapidly increasing levels of ‘head shop’ drug use. Many addiction services saw a significant decrease in the use of such substances following the introduction of the legislation.Switching drugsHowever, they did not necessarily see a fall-off in numbers, or in the level of need of those attending. For many people who have significant difficulties with drug use, the unavailability of their primary drug of choice will simply result in them switching to a different drug. In fact, many people began using head shop drugs in the first instance because of a drop in heroin supply. Once head shop drugs were restricted via the legislation, and heroin increasingly became available again, there was a shift away from head shop drugs back to the more traditional substances of choice – notably heroin and benzodiazepines.The point is that for many chronically-addicted people, controlling (or eliminating) the supply of a certain drug does not necessarily result in them quitting drugs – it restricts the use of that drug. In any event, poly-drug use is widespread among people who use drugs, and many people who access addiction services use both heroin and benzodiazepines. Of particular interest in this regard is the reported bumper crop of opium in Afghanistan. According to the UNODC, opium production in Afghanistan rose by 49 per cent in 2013, meaning that there is more raw material for the production of heroin available. Further, it has generally been the case that increased Afghan production of opium translates into a corresponding increase in the availability of heroin on the illicit market throughout Europe.If the enactment of legislation to increase controls on benzodiazepines coincides with increased heroin availability in Ireland, the natural result may be fewer benzodiazepines and more heroin on the illicit market. This could be problematic. As a general rule in the city centre, heroin is injected and benzodiazepines are swallowed. An increase in heroin use will thus likely lead to an increase in the frequency of injecting behaviours, with all that that brings (unsafe disposal of injecting equipment, blood borne virus transmission, greater risk of overdose, etc). Simply put, this would mean increased risks for everyone.Addressing the fundamental causesSo, while legislation may change the landscape, it isn’t a complete solution. Criminal justice measures are often costly to implement and carry to their conclusion (it cost €65,000 on average to imprison one person for one year in 2012); and such measures don’t always (and aren’t designed to) address the fundamental causes of problematic behaviour related to drug use. There is a widespread acceptance that drug use is primarily a health issue. As the UNODC noted in its 2013 World Drug Report:Countering the drug problem in full compliance with human rights standards requires an emphasis on the underlying spirit of the existing drug conventions, which is about health. Advocacy for a stronger health perspective and an interconnected re-balancing of drug control efforts must take place.This is as true for local responses as it is for international responses. If we are to put in place meaningful solutions to the issue of drug use in Dublin, we need to do more than increasing the powers and workload of the Gardaí. Such an approach can shift the location and visibility of drug related anti-social behaviour, but does not address its root causes. It is time to acknowledge that drug and alcohol use is a part of modern society – it is a public health issue to be managed, and there are limited returns to be achieved from criminal justice responses.There will always be people who struggle with substance use; we can’t eliminate that. While prohibitive and restrictive approaches limit access to substances which might otherwise be abused and cause harm to the wider population, they can also serve to maximise the harm to a smaller cohort – the chronically addicted. This relatively small group of people require a different approach. Many have co-morbid issues, such as homelessness and/or mental health difficulties. We need to be able to provide support at every opportunity so that when people facing these difficulties are ready to make a positive change in their lives they have that opportunity.To this end, the most lasting solution to Dublin’s issues is to provide people with easily accessible treatment at critical moments when their motivation is high. It is important that we progress innovative initiatives like Medically Supervised Injecting Centres, where people can inject drugs in a safe environment, and Crisis Residential Units, providing medical stabilisation which is needs-based and accessible on demand. Such evidence-based services are common in other European cities, and if introduced here they would help to address the issues of drug related anti-social behaviour in Dublin City centre.Tony Duffin is the Director of the Ana Liffey Drug Project, a national addiction service working to reduce the harm caused by drug use in Ireland. Ana Liffey provided direct services to over 3,500 clients in 2012, many of whom are among the most marginalised from mainstream service provision. To find out more about the Ana Liffey’s services click here. To donate to the Ana Liffey, click here.Follow the Ana Liffey Drug Project on Facebook or Twitter.Read: Gardaí seize more heroin than any other drug on O’Connell Street
WEDDING RINGS, POWER tools and many, many smartphones are among the items Gardaí are trying to return to the rightful owners.If you’ve had an item stolen recently (or you lost something and you’re a bit embarrassed about it), constantly scanning eBay is not the only way to see where it ended up.In particular, Gardaí in Cork city have launched a new appeal for members of the public to claim their jewellery, purses and sweet, sweet fixie bikes.Are these your shoes? Source: An Garda Síochána via FlickrThe newest batch of lost and stolen stuff in the People’s Republic of Cork was announced yesterday on the Garda Facebook page.If you misplaced something in the area recently, and you’d quite like it back, check out this list of photos, and follow the instructions to come in and claim your prized possession.Last month, Gardaí made a special appeal for the owners of €100,000 worth of art to come forward.The paintings and antiques were seized from a house in West Dublin recently, and include works by the likes of Robert Ballagh and William Ashford.Is this yours? Call Pearse St Garda station on 01-666-9012 if you think it is. Source: An Garda Síochána via FlickrFor everything else – phones, rings, a big box of screws and nails – have a look through this list of photos from around the country, to see if your stuff is available.And if you happen to have lost your lovingly polished trumpet and very, very fancy velvet case – Gardaí at Shankill might just have it for you. Source: An Garda Síochána via FlickrRead: Gardaí find stolen art from the 1980s but aren’t sure where it’s from>
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Senator Arthur Sinodinos delivered his maiden speech in parliament last week and took the opportunity to praise his former boss John Howard. One of the architects of the workplace relations policy that became WorkChoices under PM Howard, the Senator told a packed upper house (including Mr Howard in the front row of the public gallery), that a mistake had been made in WorkChoices when the award safety net had been stripped back.“The truth is we failed to prepare the ground for such a major reform,” said Senator Sinodinos.” Some employers abused that freedom.” John Howard’s 2007 election defeat was partly blamed on the WorkChoices policy. Mr Howard was reported to have flinched as the Senator’s mea culpa on WorkChoices began. Mr Sinodinos was often lauded as “the real deputy PM” in the Howard administration. In his speech he described John Howard as “a fighter, someone who was prepared to take the knocks for what he believed, pick himself up and have another go. “Observing John Howard convinced me that politics is not worth a candle unless you are fighting for something.”Reflecting on the Gillard government’s recent victories, Sinodinos said the Labor Government’s carbon tax was a “giant churn of taxpayer’s money,” that in the absence of international action, “will only harm Australian industry and send greenhouse emissions offshore.” Senator Sinodinos was also critical of the Government’s mining tax, saying it should be “put on hold to avoid a double whammy on the resources sector.” Paying tribute to his heritage, he shared his views on population targets, saying a bigger Australia was needed to meet future economic challenges. “Mr President, I’m not a Polyanna, I do not doubt that a bigger Australia poses environmental, planning, infrastructure and other challenges, but a richer economy is also better equipped to deal with such matters,” he said. “For me the social dividend in particular of a big Australia is more jobs, jobs and jobs. This is the best income redistribution known to man. “I am proud of my Greek heritage, which is the basis of Western civilisation,” said the Senator to the gallery’s amusement, “and you should still be paying for it, and you will.” With his wife Elizabeth present, the Senator thanked her for her love and support. “She’s tougher, smarter and more discerning in her judgments than I am,” he said. “To my children Dion and Isobella, I hope you will forgive my absences and in coming years learn that serving others is a noble cause,” he said. Senator Sinodinos was John Howard’s chief of staff from 1997 to 2006. In 2008 he was recognised for his contribution to public service with an Order of Australia.
Langage : joindre le geste à la parole pour mieux se faire comprendrePays-Bas – Les Dr Özyürek et Maris de l’université de Nijmegen ont découvert que l’association du geste au discours permettait une meilleure compréhension du langage verbal.Les chercheurs ont demandé à des volontaires de regarder de courtes vidéos présentant des actions de la vie quotidienne, comme couper des légumes ou faire la vaisselle. Puis d’autres vidéos avec mots et gestes. Pour certains essais, le langage correspondait aux gestes, dans d’autres pas. Ensuite les volontaires devaient indiquer si le discours et les gestes étaient liés à la vidéo initiale qu’ils avaient regardée.À lire aussiJournée mondiale du lavage des mains : à quoi ça sert ?Les volontaires se sont révélés plus rapides et plus exacts quand le geste correspondait au mot parlé. Ils ont aussi obtenu de bons résultats quand les chercheurs leur demandaient de ne prêter attention qu’à la parole et pas au geste. Ces résultats suggèrent que lorsque le geste et la parole véhiculent la même information, ils sont plus faciles à comprendre que quand ils transmettent des informations différentes.Cette découverte, pour les chercheurs, trouve ses implications dans de nombreuses situations quotidiennes de communication, comme l’enseignement, les discours politiques, les publicités, les situations d’urgence. Les chercheurs concluent que la meilleure façon de se faire comprendre pour les orateurs est de coordonner ce qu’ils disent avec des mots avec ce qu’ils font avec leurs mains.Le 17 janvier 2010 à 15:01 • Emmanuel Perrin
Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Ben Roethlisberger Pinterest Adam Martin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Last night’s 6/11 WWE Smackdown on Syfy drew 2.61 million viewers, up from last week’s show that drew 2.35 million viewers.Smackdown was the No. 1 on cable Thursday night for the second week in a row drawing a 0.7 rating among adults 18-49.Source: TVbythenumbers.comRecommended videosPowered by AnyClipNFL Week 2 Preview With Mike Lombardi, Will Antonio Brown Play?Video Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 3:34/Current Time 0:04Loaded: 36.22%0:05Remaining Time -3:30 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list WWE Hall of Famer Trish Stratus confirmed for WWE Smackdown premiere on FOX Now Playing Up Next Twitter Roman Reigns is in Remission WhatsApp Wrestleview Weekly: Predictions for tonight’s Clash of Champions event in Charlotte Videos Articles Now Playing Up Next Facebook Google+ Ronda Rousey On WWE: I Love This Job, But I Dont Need It Bully Ray Calls Out Ring Of Honor Fan On Twitter NFL Week 2 Preview With Mike Lombardi, Will Antonio Brown Play? Seth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate Occasions WWE Draft confirmed to be taking place as a two-night event starting on October 11
Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson believes Wilfried Zaha can become an important icon of the club.Hodgson believes Zaha can emulate the cult-hero status of players like Matt Le Tissier at Southampton and Ryan Giggs at Manchester United.The former England head coach believes there’s more to football achievements than winning trophies citing Le Tissier as the prime example.Zaha recently ended speculation surrounding his club future by putting pen to paper on a new five-year deal to remain with his boyhood club until 2023.Asked if Zaha has the credentials to become Palace’s answer to the ex-Saints star, Hodgson said: “I have an enormous respect for Matt Le Tissier.” According to Daily Mail.“That would have been a career I’d have been unbelievably proud of, to have a career at one club and to be as much of an icon and to be as well-loved and as well respected at that club as he is, and furthermore to have the respect of everyone in football.”Hodgson praises “mature” response from Wilfried Zaha Manuel R. Medina – September 12, 2019 Crystal Palace and player Wilfried Zaha wanted to part ways this summer, but in the end, the footballer was not sold but his response was very mature.“I don’t know anyone in football who has ever said anything other than that Matt Le Tissier was a fantastic player, fantastic person, and a fantastic club servant.”“That is not such a bad thing to have people say about you when your career is over. I would have been very happy with that.”Hodgson also believes Zaha can meet all his career goals at Palace.Speaking ahead of Monday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool at Selhurst Park, the former England boss said:“I hope so. The fact is that there was a time when being at a club for a long time and serving that club very well and helping that club to do very well was enough for people.”
Crews descended on Esther Short Park on Monday to clean up the city’s living room after it played host to a weekend of world-class musicians, fine wine and international cuisine at the Vancouver Wine & Jazz Festival.Festival artistic director Michael Kissinger said late Sunday that the 14th annual event attracted between 12,000 and 15,000 people.“I bet we had 5,000, 6,000 on Saturday,” Kissinger said.In addition to the music, the festival offered a selection of more than 200 wines, international cuisine from nine local restaurants, and displays of visual art and crafts from 40 fine artists from California, Montana, Washington and Oregon.The festival will return again in 2012.
Dan Cohen AUTHOR To cope with the uncertain trajectory of defense spending, the state of Wisconsin needs to consider ways to diversify its economy, according to a commentary in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.The city of Oshkosh already is attempting to reduce its reliance on defense contracts following the loss of thousands of jobs at Oshkosh Defense as DOD has slashed its procurement of tactical military vehicles. One avenue local planners are pursuing with the support of $1.8 million in grants from DOD’s Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA) is helping the suppliers of Oshkosh Defense enter other industries.The city of Marinette similarly should prepare for the possibility that work building the Navy’s littoral combat ship at Marinette Marine Corp. declines, write David Newby, president emeritus of the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO, and state Rep. Melissa Sargent (D).“Developing alternatives would serve as a useful ‘Plan B’ to deal with any reductions in the number of LCS ships slated to be built in Wisconsin,” they stated.Other states dependent on military contracts are moving ahead with initiatives to lessen their reliance on DOD. Two years ago Connecticut lawmakers passed legislation creating a Commission on Connecticut’s Future to seek ways to diversify the state’s economy with sustainable jobs that can cushion Pentagon spending uncertainties, according to the commentary. Michigan recently received a grant from OEA to develop alternative plans for 10 companies statewide.Several groups in Wisconsin already are looking at how best to reduce the state’s dependence on defense dollars. Sustainable Solutions: Wisconsin Defense Transition Coalition has urged the state to craft a plan to save good paying jobs and create new ones while transitioning to a new sustainable economy. One of the group’s proposals calls for Oshkosh Corp. to shift production of civilian-related products now destined for a plant in Mexico to Wisconsin.“It’s time for a new approach that will put Wisconsin’s economy on a sound footing for the future and protect it against the uncertainties of the military budget,” the commentary concludes.
Members of families with a gross annual income of below Rs 8 lakh will be eligible to avail benefits of reservation on a preferential basis in civil posts and services in West Bengal, according to a state government notification. People, who are not covered under reservation schemes for scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and other backward classes, will get 10 per cent reservation in direct recruitment in civil posts and services of the state government, and also admissions to educational institutions in the state, it said. Also Read – Dehydrated elephant being given treatment Advertise With Us “Gross annual family income should be below of Rs 8 lakh and the income shall also include the income from all sources — salary, agriculture, business, profession etc for the final year prior to the year of application,” the notification said Gross annual income is one of the criteria to avail the reservation, it said. The notification was issued on July 9, six days after the Mamata Banerjee government announced 10 per cent reservation in government jobs and educational institutions for the economically weaker sections (EWS) in the general category. Also Read – CBI carrying out surprise checks at 150 government departments Advertise With Us The decision of the West Bengal government came six months after the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre approved a similar proposal. The notification stated that a person whose family does not own or possess five acres of agricultural land and above, or own a residential flat of 1,000 sqft and above, would be able to apply for the reservation. Advertise With Us Those who do not possess a residential plot of 100 square yards and above in notified municipalities, would be eligible for the 10 per cent reservation, it said. Besides, those who do not own a residential plot of 200 square yards and above in areas other than notified municipalities, would also be eligible. “The property held by a family in different locations would be clubbed together for determining Economically Weaker Section (EWS) status”, it stated. The notification also stated that the benefit of the reservation under the EWS would be availed upon production of an income and asset certificate issued by a district magistrate, additional district magistrate, sub-divisional officer or the DWO for the Kolkata Municipal Corporation areas.
An Indian salesperson calculates the price of gold bracelets at a jeweler in Hyderabad on July 22, 2015.NOAH SEELAM/AFP/Getty ImagesDespite the selloff in local equities, other asset classes like gold failed to gain investors’ attention.India’s benchmark BSE Sensex fell about 1.6 percent on Tuesday, marking it the sixth consecutive session of falls, after declining as much as 3.7 percent earlier.While analysts attribute the government’s new capital gains tax announcement as the prime reason for the meltdown, it has a lot to do with a global market rout that whacked investor sentiment.Stocks in the US, Asia and other global markets too have seen a sharp selloff this week.Gold, which is considered a safe haven in volatile times, rose about 13 percent last year, followed by another 3 percent this year. However, analysts said it is too early to seek safe-haven assets as equities will rebound following this week’s sharp fall.Easing inflation worries also raised speculation that the US Federal Reserve is likely to tighten policy more aggressively.According to projections released in December, officials expect three rate hikes in 2018 — so long as market conditions remain broadly as they are — but some economists believe the central bank could add another increase at its final meeting of the year.Higher interest rates make gold a less attractive investment because it pays no interest.Meanwhile, strength in the US dollar index also weighed on gold prices earlier, when world stock markets extended their selloff. A stronger dollar typically makes commodities priced in the greenback more expensive for buyers using other currencies.The World Gold Council on Tuesday forecasted that the gold demand in India is likely to remain below its 10-year average for a third year in 2018.Spot silver dropped 0.69 percent to $16.623 per ounce. Platinum fell 0.05 percent to $989.10 per ounce after hitting a three-week low of $979.74. Palladium shed 2.07 percent to $1,008.72 per ounce after touching $999.22, its lowest since December 8, Reuters data showed.