New Taxicab Company Offers Several Options to Passengers

first_img Minister of Transport and Mining, Hon. Robert Montague, says the newly established Transport and Logistics Company, ‘876 On The Go’, will revolutionise the local taxicab sector through the range of options available to passengers.The company employs cutting-edge technology that enables the public to book cabs and facilitates payments, thus eliminating the need for cash on board.This platform provides greater security for both the passengers and drivers, but is tailored and driven by a geographic information system that operates in a similar fashion as Uber, which is a ride-share app for fast, reliable rides originating in the United States.To this end, the Minister is encouraging other players in the industry to continue diversifying and improving the various offerings to commuters.Mr. Montague was speaking at the launch of 876 On The Go 24/7 Limited at the company’s offices located at 34-36 Old Hope Road in St. Andrew, on September 11.“I really want to salute the taxi associations for the work that they have been doing, encouraging their drivers to adhere to the rules and also weeding out some of the bad apples within the system,” he said.He congratulated Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the company, Olivia Lindsay, for her vision in seeking to provide greater options to commuters.“She has brought innovation to the industry and for it to grow, we have to innovate,” the Minister emphasised.Mr. Montague noted that this falls in line with the Ministry and Government’s drive to transform the sector.Meanwhile, Ms. Lindsay said the company was formed out of a need to provide first-class service to the commuting public.She pointed out that passengers have the option to pay via cash, credit or debit card, thereby easing the methods of payment available. She also said persons are able to reserve their cabs for passenger or package delivery.As a duly registered and incorporated transport and logistics company, 876 On The Go 24/7 Limited offers a full range of transportation and logistics services, moulded and shaped to suit the needs of the Jamaican marketplace.The taxicab service includes courteous and well-attired drivers, in-cab tablet, WI-FI and a bottle of purified water for each passenger. In addition, each passenger is afforded the opportunity to critique and send feedback about services via the 876 On The Go app.The company’s operation is streamlined through a command centre. The public, on the other hand, interfaces through the 876 On The Go app, which is available in the Google Play and App Store.The easily downloaded app enables the commuting public to do advance bookings, make payments and live-track cabs, passengers and packages.All trips are confirmed electronically with a photo of the assigned driver, the vehicle licence plate information along with his/her telephone contact details. Story Highlights The company employs cutting-edge technology that enables the public to book cabs and facilitates payments, thus eliminating the need for cash on board. Minister of Transport and Mining, Hon. Robert Montague, says the newly established Transport and Logistics Company, ‘876 On The Go’, will revolutionise the local taxicab sector through the range of options available to passengers. This platform provides greater security for both the passengers and drivers, but is tailored and driven by a geographic information system that operates in a similar fashion as Uber, which is a ride-share app for fast, reliable rides originating in the United States.last_img read more

SCFs IPO Waiting for Better Days

first_imgzoomImage by WMN Uncertain market conditions coupled with international sanctions against Russia have delayed yet again the planned initial public offering (IPO) of the country’s largest shipping company Sovcomflot, Reuters reported citing the company’s CEO Sergei Frank.Hence, the company plans to wait out until the shipping market recovers in full in order to list its shares. As explained by Frank, despite signs of market rebound in the fourth quarter of last year, this is far from the historical average the company is waiting for.Russia owns 100% stake in the company and is seeking to sell 25% stake targeting around 24 billion rubles (USD 358 million). Earlier reports suggested that the preferred investors would be small-scale rather than a strategic buyer as Moscow would like to keep control of the company’s management.The privatization process, aimed at collecting fresh funds for the company, have been faced with several delays over the past few years.Sovcomflot managed to return to the black in the third quarter ended September 30, 2018, amid signs of a better balance in the tanker market.Namely, the company reported a net profit of USD 0.3 million for the period, against a loss of USD 22 million seen in the same quarter a year earlier.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

New Legislation Enhances Consumer Protection

first_imgThe province is making sure Nova Scotians are better protected when they purchase a mortgage with new legislation introduced today, April 16. The Mortgage Regulation Act replaces the 1966 Mortgage Brokers’ and Lenders’ Registration Act, which had not changed significantly since 1999. “Buying a mortgage can be confusing, especially with so many options and vendors to choose from,” said Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Minister John MacDonell. “The new Mortgage Regulation Act ensures the rules around mortgage brokering and lending are up-to-date, reflect current industry practices, and are clear, fair, and consistent throughout the province.” The current mortgage brokering and lending legislation is almost 50 years old. It has not kept up with industry standards, best practices or various mortgage products available to consumers. The new act proactively addresses licensing and insurance requirements for mortgage brokers and lenders. It also brings the province’s mortgage brokering and lending industry in line with other Canadian jurisdictions and ensures Nova Scotia meets its obligations under the Agreement on Internal Trade. Under the new act, Nova Scotians can be assured they are dealing with a trained mortgage broker who will provide them with the best advice possible on what will likely be their biggest debt. According to the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals, which has 275 members in Nova Scotia, 30 per cent of Nova Scotia residential mortgage shoppers consult a mortgage broker. “We’re very pleased to support this new legislation. Many consumers are unfamiliar with the complexities of a mortgage and the range of available options, and they tend to rely heavily on service providers to guide them,” said Jim Murphy, president and CEO, Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals. “The new act will raise the bar on education and licensing requirements for mortgage brokering professionals in Nova Scotia, which is good news for consumers, as well as for the industry in Nova Scotia and throughout Canada.” The province consulted extensively with the public, as well as with the mortgage brokering and lending industry in developing the new act.last_img read more

Risks to waterways substantial but total picture hard to see World Wildlife

first_imgOTTAWA – Canada can no longer pretend it is a country rich with pristine lakes and rivers, the World Wildlife Fund said Monday in a report into the country’s waterways.After four years of research, the conservation organization concluded that one-third of Canada’s 167 watersheds are experiencing high levels of disturbance due to everything from pollution and overuse to climate change and hydroelectric development.Every watershed in Canada is seeing some impact from climate change, with three-quarters seeing a moderate or high impact, said David Miller, president of the WWF.“Scientists call it stress,” said Miller. “I would call it a threat. That’s a real worry.”The research produced a score for each watershed in four areas — water flow, water quality, the health of fish and the health of invertebrates such as snails, leeches and bugs.The data revealed that more than one-third are so polluted it is of serious concern, while one-quarter have poor or fair water quality and one-fifth have water flow issues due to hydro dams, the WWF said.But decades of government cuts to monitoring programs means there isn’t enough data to give a full picture of watershed health, the report said; in 110 of the 167 watersheds, there wasn’t enough to data to produce a score in at least two of the four areas.Information on fish and invertebrates was particularly lacking, said the report.Invertebrates are extremely sensitive to ecological disturbances and are a good marker of the health of a watershed but 112 of the 167 watersheds have no good data available.“Where the data was available about the health, we do see there are some pretty significant health concerns and that implies when we start to see more data, we’ll see more health concerns,” Miller said.The WWF wants Ottawa to set national standards and a national database for what needs to be reported on watersheds.Much of the data is collected by provincial and municipal governments, but there are no federal requirements to do so, which is why some watersheds have data and others don’t, Miller said.In brief speech late Monday at a reception with WWF members, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed concern about the lack of data but did not go so far as to promise a national database.“Those of you who know me know that I’m a bit of a math and data geek,” he said.“And hearing about what WWF Canada had to go through for the past four years to collect, collate data from so many different sources, to try and get a picture of something that, quite frankly, Canadians take for granted and we should know much more about, is a real challenge.”Trudeau said everyone, including governments, need to “step up” and ensure the data is collected and shared.“There’s so much we need to know and so little time in which to gather it, understand it and act to protect what we have for future generations.”Trudeau said the federal government is on the right track, pointing to its recently introduced “ambitious” oceans protections plan and funding earmarked in the last budget for protecting freshwater resources and managing the threat of invasive species. But he acknowledged there is much more to do.Environment Minister Catherine McKenna was in Europe for a G7 ministerial meeting as well as a meeting at the Vatican.In a statement, her office pointed to $197 million Canada set aside in 2016 to improve ocean and freshwater science and monitoring, but did not address directly the WWF’s call for a national database of information that is publicly available.—follow @mrabson on Twitter.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version had the wrong name for the World Wildlife Fundlast_img read more


first_imgAdvertisement Facebook Emmy-nominated “Schitt’s Creek” co-creator Daniel Levy will receive an award from the LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD next month.The media watchdog group says it will give the Toronto actor/writer/producer the Davidson/Valentini Award at the GLAAD Gala San Francisco on Sept. 28.The award is named after Craig Davidson, GLAAD’s first executive director, and his partner Michael Valentini. Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With:center_img Daniel Levy cast member in the Pop TV series “Schitt’s Creek” poses for a portrait during the 2018 Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour at the Langham Huntington hotel on Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018, in Pasadena, Calif. Emmy-nominated “Schitt’s Creek” co-creator Daniel Levy will receive an award from the LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD next month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP It honours an LGBTQ media professional who has promoted acceptance for the LGBTQ community.Levy is the showrunner on “Schitt’s Creek” and also stars as a character who identifies as pansexual, which means being open to all sexual orientations or gender identities.The openly gay Levy has also done fundraising for GLAAD and, in honour of his recent birthday, his fans raised over $20,000 for Ontario’s LGBT Youth Line.“Schitt’s Creek” airs on CBC and Pop TV and is also on Netflix.The show about a formerly rich family living in a small-town motel is up for four Emmys next month, including best comedy series.Stars Catherine O’Hara and Eugene Levy are also up for acting trophies.“Through his work on-screen and behind the scenes of ‘Schitt’s Creek,’ Dan Levy moves LGBTQ visibility on television forward in humorous, compelling, and necessary ways,” Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, said in a statement.“By featuring and celebrating a pansexual character, Dan and ‘Schitt’s Creek’ are expanding representation of the spectrum of identities within the LGBTQ community in a way that other content creators should model. Dan has been such a powerful advocate throughout his career, and continues to use his platform to uplift and inspire LGBTQ youth.”The Canadian Press Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

UN team Sierra Leone officials begin talks on establishing special war crimes

UN team members reviewed the mission’s programme with the Sierra Leonean governmental task force on the Special Court, led by Attorney General and Minister of Justice Solomon Berewa. They were also briefed by military personnel from the UN Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) and the Mission’s Political Affairs and Human Rights Sections.The team was also briefed by UNAMSIL’s Public Information Section and visited proposed premises for the Special Court, the Pademba Road Prison and the High Court of Sierra Leone.Led by UN Assistant Secretary-General for Legal Affairs Ralph Zacklin, the 15-member team is focusing its work on locating premises for the Court, finding local personnel and services, and launching the investigative and prosecutorial process.The delegation includes representatives from the UN Office of Legal Affairs, the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and for the former Yugoslavia and the Court Management Committee, which includes officials from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Netherlands and Lesotho.On Wednesday, part of the team is scheduled to meet with representatives of the legal profession, including the Bar Association and the Chief Justice, while others are expected hold discussions with the Registrar of the High Court and Court management officers, as well as the Ministries of Lands and Works. read more

Minerals for a Green Society US reliance on imported sources

first_imgThe Mining and Metallurgical Society of America (MMSA) recently sponsored a symposium on Minerals for a Green Society in Washington, D.C. The presentations and discussions highlighted facts about minerals that are critical for our changing society, including what is needed and how vulnerable the US may be to disruptions in global supply. The symposium also provided opportunities for networking among individuals who are concerned about mineral-supply issues and who can take action to assure US competitiveness in a green economy.Attendees included individuals from the mining and renewable energy industries, federal and state agencies, Congressional staffs, and academia. Speakers covered issues concerning global demand and supply of mineral resources, particularly those that are critical for emerging technologies in energy efficiency and renewable energy, including rare earth elements, lithium, copper, and elements that are likely to be key in photovoltaic solar power generation. They informed the audience about progress made on recommendations of two recent reports of the National Research Council – one dealing with minerals that are critical to the US economy and one dealing with materials for the 21st century military.Discussion included recent dramatic changes in geopolitics of mineral resources, geological and geographic rarity of some resources, tradeoffs and ‘green choices,’ recycling, recovery of key elements as byproducts of major metals, and implications of substitution of one element for another in key energy technologies.Copies of the program, slide presentations, major points made by the speakers, and speaker biographies are posted on the MMSA website at Mining and Metallurgical Society of America is a professional organisation dedicated to increasing public awareness and understanding about mining and why mined materials are essential to modern society and human well being. Since its inception in 1908, MMSA has provided valuable information and guidance to federal, state, and local governments on a number of important public policy issues dealing with mining. MMSA has also made substantial contributions to educational programs that help teachers inform students about mining and how minerals are used.last_img read more

Health Minister slams false and unfounded claims from antivaccine campaigners

first_imgFactCheck: No, the reported side effects of the HPV vaccine do NOT outweigh the proven benefits> 9,198 Views Image: Shutterstock/MAGNIFIER Share Tweet Email1 By Christina Finn Apr 28th 2017, 6:20 AM Friday 28 Apr 2017, 6:20 AM Health Minister slams ‘false’ and ‘unfounded’ claims from anti-vaccine campaigners Highlighting the particular case of the HPV vaccine, Harris said he is very concerned about the fall in the uptake rate, which is heading below 50%. Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Image: Shutterstock/MAGNIFIER HPV stands for Human Papillomavirus, and is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections, with almost all men and women contracting it at some point in their lives.According to the HSE, 80% of women contract HPV, usually in their late teens or 20s.The HPV vaccine used in the school programme is called Gardasil, and protects against four out of 170 types of the virus: numbers 6, 11, 16, 18.HPV vaccine “There is no scientific evidence that the HPV vaccine causes any long-term illness. However, this misinformation has led to a significant drop in uptake rates of the HPV vaccine. This means that a large cohort of girls are now at risk of developing cervical cancer later in their lives,” said the Wicklow TD.“This is a clear and present danger. We know what can happen from our own fairly recent experience. The scare surrounding the MMR vaccine in the 1990s resulted in a large reduction in uptake rates for this vaccine,” he added.When there was an outbreak of measles in Dublin in January 2000 more than 100 children were hospitalised, he said, adding that 13 children required intensive care treatment, while there were three measles related deaths.The minister is not the only politician to voice his concerns about the campaign against the vaccine.Fine Gael TD Kate O’Connell recently told the Oireachtas Health Committee that forty women will die of cervical cancer as a result of the falling uptake in the HPV vaccine.Impact on society Harris said that despite the availability of free and effective vaccines, the small number of people making the choice not to vaccinate themselves or their children are having a wider impact on society.People need to be aware that a personal decision not to vaccinate has a wider public impact. Such a decision may put their own life and that of their child at risk, and it may also put at risk other vulnerable individuals that they come into contact with – people with a reduced immunity such as sick and elderly vulnerable patients, pregnant women or small babies who have not yet completed all their vaccinations.However, despite warnings about the HPV vaccine, Harris said he was glad to say Ireland’s uptake rates for many vaccines in the Primary Childhood Immunisation Programme are close to the World Health Organisation (WHO) uptake target of 95%.Despite this figure, the minister said there was no room for complacency.“Due to the success of our programme, many vaccine preventable diseases have become so infrequent that we have lost the collective memory of how serious some childhood illnesses can be. We cannot become victims of our own success,” he concluded.Read: ‘Forty young Irish girls will die of cervical cancer as a result of falling HPV vaccine rates’ says Fine Gael TD>Read: ‘Ireland needs assurances about Sellafield safety as UK withdraws from EU nuclear safety group’> HEALTH MINISTER SIMON HARRIS had harsh words for anti-vaccine campaigners yesterday whose comments he said are putting the lives of children and adults at risk.At the launch of the Irish vaccines report yesterday the minister said some people have misconceived ideas associated with the risks of vaccines.Highlighting the particular case of the HPV vaccine, Harris said he is very concerned about the fall in the uptake rate, which is heading below 50%.Harris said the decline is partly due to a campaign of misinformation about the vaccine – claims he states are “false” and “unfounded”.Anti-vaccine campaigners One campaign group that has come to prominence in recent years is Regret, which questions the safety of the HPV vaccine, claiming it caused illness in 400 Irish teenage girls and young women after they took it. 77 Comments last_img read more

British farright figure Tommy Robinson to run in EU elections

first_img Image: PA Wire Short URL Thursday 25 Apr 2019, 4:46 PM Image: PA Wire By Rónán Duffy Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 23,608 Views Share Tweet Email1 134 Comments British far-right figure Tommy Robinson to run in EU elections Robinson was the founder of the anti-Islam English Defence League. BRITISH FAR-RIGHT figure Tommy Robinson says he is running in the upcoming European elections in the UK.Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was the founder of the anti-Islam English Defence League and was recently banned from Facebook.The social media giant said in February that it had banned Robinson for repeatedly “using dehumanising language and calling for violence targeted at Muslims”.In a post today on his website, Robinson said “the elites have tried to silence my voice” and that he is running for the European Parliament as a way to “fight back”.Last year, Robinson was jailed for 10 months for contempt of court after filming four men in an ongoing trial and broadcasting the footage online.The men were subsequently convicted of gang-raping a teenage girl.Robinson had garnered a large following on social media before his arrest which grew when he was incarcerated.Recently, he spoke on stage outside the House of Commons during pro-Brexit rallies that were held there on 29 March.Robison says he will be running in the UK’s North West England region which has 8 seats. Apr 25th 2019, 4:47 PM last_img read more

4th Athens Democracy Forum draws to a close

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The 4th Athens Democracy Forum (ADF) kicked off on Wednesday with some strong opinions by American economist and op-ed columnist for The New York Times Paul Krugman, who declared that Greece would be better off outside the eurozone.The statement was in response to a question posed by executive editor of Greek newspaper Kathimerini Alexis Papachelas, to which he added: “the question is academic… it won’t happen.”The Nobel Prize-winning economist went on to say that European elites are strongly committed to maintaining the integrity of the euro area, and that Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ reluctance to remove Greece from the equation, had depleted the debt-hit country’s bargaining power, reports Kathimerini.Day two of the forum saw the country’s former Finance Minister, Yanis Varoufakis go head to head in a heated debate with Google’s Global Head of International Relations, Ross LaJeunesse. In the panel discussion on the relationship between democracy and enterprises chaired by Krugman, matters got heated when Varoufakis characterised European inter-governance as a “cartel”. He said this prevented the adoption of policies that would alleviate the effects of the European crisis, and that such policies would be adopted if Europe was more democratic. However, the former minister really struck a chord when he said that the era of Google and Apple had led to “shrinkage of competition and huge concentration of economic and political power”.LaJeunesse didn’t shy away from responding with a host of benefits that Google’s services offered to democracy, among which he noted the decentralisation of power. On Thursday night after participating in a discussion panel with Roger Cohen of the New York Times and European Commissioner for Migration, Dimitris Avramopoulos, executive director of Human Rights Watch, Kenneth Roth was presented with the first City of Athens Democracy Award. Roth was recognised for his contribution to democracy thanks to his lifelong commitment to human rights. The conference will draw to a close today, with the second part of the event moving on to the Costa Navarino luxury resort in Pylos. There, participants will have the chance to enjoy a jam-packed weekend of philosophical walks, guided archaeological and historical tours to the landmarks of the region, and olive oil tastings. A panel discussion on Architecture and Democracy is also scheduled to take place, and will be moderated by Roger Cohen, featuring Krugman; urbanist Charles Landry; urbanist, author and architect Patrik Schumacher of Zaha Hadid Architects; and the University of Crete’s emeritus professor of archaeology, Petros Themelis.The ADF is organised by The New York Times in cooperation with the United Nations Democracy Fund, the City of Athens and Kathimerini.For more information on the ADF, visit www.athensdemocracyforum.comlast_img read more

Greek passport one of the strongest

first_imgGreece’s economy might be struggling but its passport is in the top ten most powerful passports in the world allowing its holders to travel to 174 countries without requiring a visa.According to the the Official Passport Index, Greece sits on number six alone whereas Singapore and South Korea sit jointly at the top; Japan has pushed Germany from first place and they both vie for the second.Jointly the world’s third most powerful passports belong to Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Italy, France and Spain while the UK has lost a spot, now sitting on number four alongside the US, Luxembourg, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and Portugal. Switzerland, Malaysia, Ireland and Canada are all on fifth place.The ranking takes into consideration how many countries can be visited without needing to apply for a visa. By visiting you can even explore a country’s ranking regarding citizenship by investment and residency by investment standards among other things. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Probst takes early lead in 17th

first_imgState Rep. Tim Probst is outpolling Republican political newcomer Brian Peck in a 17th District race.Unofficial returns Tuesday showed Probst with 53.28 percent to Peck’s 46.57 percent, with between 30,000 and 35,000 ballots left to be counted.At Clark College Tuesday, Probst said he expects his lead to narrow as votes come in.“It won’t be handy, it will be very close by the time the full vote is counted,” he said. “But I’m very happy to have had the confidence of the voters.” The race has been close from the start: Peck outpolled Probst 52.9 percent to 46.9 percent in the Aug. 17 two-way primary.Both political parties have poured tens of thousands of dollars into the campaign, making the race the most expensive legislative contest in Clark County. When Peck began running TV ads in the general election describing Probst as a typical Democratic big-spender, Probst cried foul and launched his own ad campaign accusing Probst of lying about his record.Probst said he plans to post two things to his website, a petition to reduce the number of negative ads and to stop politicians from lying in campaigns, and a poll to ask constituents about their state budget priorities.Peck, 51, is a businessman who owns a Vancouver gas station and a property rental business. He moved to the 17th District from the 49th in 2009. Peck, a high school graduate, came on strong in the primary with a message calling for sharp reductions in state spending.last_img read more

Teen takes stand for Christmas tree business

first_imgClark County says its not looking to play the Grinch this year for a 16-year-old girl running a Christmas tree lot to earn money for college.It’s a turnaround from earlier this week when the girl working the lot, Kaitlyn Metscher, discovered a note from Clark County code enforcement attached to the fence. Apparently the county wanted to speak with her about the seasonal business at Northeast 107th Avenue and Covington Road in Orchards.It’s the first year she’s rented this residential lot to sell Douglas, grand and noble firs, but her family has run a tree lot every year since she was 2 years old.“We haven’t done it on this lot before, but we did right across the street,” Metscher said. “The difference is over there is zoned commercial.”Metscher called the county, but they didn’t give her much information other than telling her the land wasn’t zoned for Christmas tree sales. She decided to double-check the county’s work and refer to state and county code.last_img read more

State Releases Plan To Improve Fairbanks Air Quality

first_imgThe state has released a long in the works plan for improving Fairbanks air quality. The community regularly falls short of federal fine particulate pollution standards in the winter, but many residents rely on wood burning for heat. There’s opposition to any sort of burn ban, and that’s not part of the plan.Download Audiolast_img

Houston Area Pipe Plant Credits New Steel Tariffs For Reopening

first_imgAbout 230 workers were laid off.Now with the price of oil around $70 and new steel tariffs, the company said it will reactivate most of the plant by September.Luca Zanotti, president of Tenaris’ U.S. operations, said they also use imported steel, for which they now have to pay 25 percent in duties. But the tariffs create new demand for their domestic product.“We’re not buying any steel which is not either domestic or we’re transferring bars, which is the raw material that is being used in our mill here, from our other mills around the world,” Zanotti said.Tenaris plans to hire more than 100 new employees at the Conroe plant and add another 150 workers at its seamless pipe mill in Bay City and its threading facility in Houston to support the increased production activity.Other pipe manufacturing companies are not so happy about the new tariffs.Borusan Mannesmann, which has a plant in Baytown, has said the new tariffs have already cost the company $2.5 million. It has asked the Trump administration for an exemption. X 00:00 /00:56 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: center_img Listen Courtesy of TenarisTenaris manufactures steel pipes for the oil and gas industryTenaris’ Conroe plant largely shut down three years ago, blaming the oil downturn and record levels of “unfairly traded imports.” Sharelast_img read more

For The Second Time US Supreme Court Reverses Death Sentence Decision For

first_imgTDCJ/Abby LivingstonThe U.S. Supreme Court first ruled in the death penalty case of Bobby Moore in March 2017.The U.S. Supreme Court has for the second time struck down the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals’ way of determining if a death row inmate is intellectually disabled and eligible for execution.The high court made that determination Tuesday in the case of Bobby Moore, who the court decided is intellectually disabled.Moore’s case highlights the complexities surrounding intellectual disability and the death penalty. The Supreme Court has previously ruled that those with intellectual disabilities can’t be executed, and after reviewing Moore’s case in 2016, tossed out the way the Texas court determines the disability in 2017. The Texas court previously relied on decades-old medical standards and a controversial set of factors created by judges to make the determination, including how well the inmate could lie.Following that ruling, the prosecutor sided with Moore and said that he is intellectually disabled, but the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals still disagreed, claiming last June that he was eligible for execution under current medical standards as well. Now, the high court has stepped in again, and this time, the majority of justices made clear that Moore has shown he is disabled and therefore ineligible for execution. The court’s opinion knocked the Texas Court for relying on the same methods it had ruled against in the 2017 opinion, like focusing on Moore’s strengths instead of his weaknesses, especially strengths gained in a controlled prison environment.The justices also said that despite the Texas court saying it had eliminated its controversial set of factors, which the high court said were problematic for advancing stereotypes, “it seems to have used many of those factors in reaching its conclusion.”“To be sure, the court of appeals opinion is not identical to the opinion we considered in Moore,” the justices wrote. “There are sentences here and there suggesting other modes of analysis consistent with what we said. But there are also sentences here and there suggesting reliance upon what we earlier called ‘lay stereotypes of the intellectually disabled.’”Moore, 59, was sentenced to death more than 38 years ago after he fatally shot a 73-year-old clerk during a Houston robbery in 1980. In 2014, a Texas court determined under current medical standards that Moore was intellectually disabled — with evidence including low IQ scores and his inability to tell time or days of the week as a teenager.But the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals overruled that decision, saying the lower court failed to use its test in making the determination. The Supreme Court invalidated that method upon review.“By rejecting the habeas court’s application of medical guidance and clinging to the standard it laid out … the CCA failed adequately to inform itself of the ‘medical community’s diagnostic framework’,” wrote Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the 5-3 opinion in 2017.In an unusual step, the prosecutor, Democratic Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg, filed a brief to the Texas court after that ruling agreeing with Moore — stating that he was intellectually disabled and should not be executed. In a surprise June opinion, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals agreed to use current medical standards as a method to determine if a death row inmate had an intellectual disability, but said that Moore still did not qualify.Both Moore and Ogg took the matter up with the justices in Washington, D.C. — marking a rare occurrence of the state and inmate arguing for the same thing. They argued that the Texas court claimed to take up medical standards but largely did the same thing that was slammed by the Supreme Court earlier. They asked the Supreme Court to reverse the Texas court’s decision without holding a hearing, or, if the justices didn’t agree to that, at least grant a second review with oral arguments. The justices took the more drastic step.Moore’s case will now go back to the Court of Criminal Appeals for a new decision, but with the high court saying Moore has shown he is intellectually disabled, he would be ineligible for execution.A difference in this ruling was a concurrence from Chief Justice John Roberts. In 2017, he dissented against the court’s reversal of the Texas court decision, claiming his colleagues’ order on how states should determine intellectual disability “lacked clarity.” On Tuesday, he said that problem still exists, but it’s “easy to see” the Court of Criminal Appeals missed the mark.“The court repeated the same errors that this Court previously condemned,” he wrote.Among the most conservative justices, Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch dissented from the majority opinion, saying, like Roberts, that the lack of clarity in how states should rule is the fault of the Supreme Court. They also criticized the majority for its “foray into factfinding” in making a decision on Moore’s disability, as opposed to its role of judicial review.The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals was left on its own in making these decisions. The Texas judges have begged the state Legislature for nearly two decades to come up with a process for determining whether death penalty defendants are intellectually disabled. This year, the few lawmakers who repeatedly file bills on the topic, have hoped that Moore’s case can make their legislation pass.Elsa Alcala, who until January was a judge on the Court of Criminal Appeals and dissented against her colleagues in both of the Moore decisions, said Tuesday’s ruling by the high court brought tears to her eyes.“It feels like the weight of the world has lifted for a moment in time,” she said.This article was originally published in The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.  Sharelast_img read more

Black Vets Face Obstacles on Home Front

first_imgGeorgia Eaves can’t count how many Veterans Day parades and events she has participated in since she served as an Army Captain during the Vietnam War. While Eaves will take part in events in Washington, D.C. and Maryland this Veterans Day weekend she said her heart is heavy because of how she sees veterans being treated, today.Vietnam Veteran Georgia Eaves attended Veterans Prayer Breakfast in 2016. She is not pleased with the way veterans are treated. (Courtesy photo)“A lot of young veterans are not being given the same opportunities as veterans from other cultures but we are all part of the same system,” said Eaves, the D.C. commander of the National Black American Veterans Association.Eaves’ sentiments are being echoed by James A. Dula, a retired Air Force Major who is chairman of the South (Prince George’s) County Democratic Club. “All Vietnam era veterans have been left out of the equation,” he said. “When we came home there were no parades or celebrations. We came home with post traumatic stress disorder.”Taking note of the mass shooting that took place near San Antonio, Texas, Dula said he wasn’t surprised the 26-year-old suspect was an Air Force veteran. “I saw a lot of people coming through who shouldn’t have been in the Air Force,” Dula said. “Look at this man. He assaulted his wife, his child and that led him to be court-marshaled and dishonorably discharged.”Greg Crawford, director of access housing, said Veterans can do well with support services. Crawford’s father, who was one of the first Blacks elected to the D.C. Council and now deceased member H.R. Crawford, who was a Republican, founded the veterans group that provides temporary and permanent housing for veterans as well as other critical services needed to transition them from homelessness to self-sufficiency.The concept of a Veteran’s Center started in the 1970s, after the older Crawford, who represented Ward 7, received a call about a group of homeless men who had created an encampment under a bridge near Georgetown. “We shared a meal of fried chicken and hot coffee that had been prepared on a hot plate,” Crawford told the AFRO in 2016.The experience was catalyst for the founding of Access Housing and earlier this week Crawford said unfortunately homeless people are still living under the same bridge.Crawford died Feb. 10 at age 78. He was remembered as a zealous advocate for residents of Ward 7 and he will be honored during a Veterans Day program at the Southeast Veterans center on Nov. 8.While veterans continue to have issues, Greg said things are getting better nationally. “In January of 2016, communities across America identified 39,471 homeless veterans during point-in-time counts. This represents a substantial decrease (56 percent) in the number of homeless veterans counted in 2010,” he said.In terms of going forward, Greg said: “We have to band together,” and while Eaves was critical of Trump, Greg is giving him the benefit of the doubt. “It’s only been 10 months and as a community we have to raise awareness about those who have made the sacrifices for this country,” he said.last_img read more

Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 2 Recap Drink With Me to

first_img ‘Game of Thrones’ Director Explains Why Arya Ambushed the Night King’Game of Thrones’ Star Sophie Turner Predicts Sansa Stark’s Future Stay on target The battles are coming. The Army of the dead is marching ever closer to Winterfell, and the situation within its walls is only slightly less perilous. What’s cool about these first couple episodes of Game of Thrones is, despite the short final season, it’s not in a hurry to get to the fireworks. The giant battles and movie-length episodes will happen. But this is the last season. They have to mean something. That’s what last night’s episode set out to accomplish. The first episode gave us all the big meetings and reunions we wanted to see, but the real interesting part happened last night: What happens afterwards?Last week was all moving the pieces into place. It was giving us the scenes we wanted to see: Jon and Arya, Tyrion and Sansa, Arya and The Hound, all those little pairings we’ve waited multiple seasons for. That’s not the end of the story. Though all these characters are in the same place, united behind a common purpose, there’s a non-zero amount of beef here. They have differences and conflicts that aren’t so easily put aside, even in the face of an impending apocalypse. This was a rare episode set entirely in one place. There wasn’t even a single check-in scene at King’s Landing. We spent the entire hour with these characters as they prepared for battle. It makes you realize how rare that really is on this show.Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Credit: Helen Sloan/HBO)Most of Game of Thrones has been about getting us to the next thing. What big death will happen this week? Who will bang whom? What ploy for the Iron Throne will move forward the most? So rarely do we get to immerse ourselves in the mood of a single place like we did last night. It’s tough to pull off an episode where the characters are just waiting for something to happen. It can feel like filler, like we’re just stalling until the fireworks arrive next week. Last night’s episode avoided that by giving us the best character work its ever done. Getting to spend real time with these people when they’re not on the run or actively preparing for battle is a rare treat.They are preparing for a battle here, but the preparations are more deliberate and somber. They all know the Army of the Dead is less than a day away. Even the political machinations have an air of uncertainty and desperation to them. Both Sansa and Daenerys still despise Jaime for what he did to their fathers. They haven’t seen the 6 seasons of character development since then. But when Brienne vouches for him, that’s good enough for Sansa. Jon just says they need every man they can get. However power hungry Dany may be, she knows when and when not to throw her weight around. She accepts Jaime, but is angry at Tyrion for not seeing through his sister’s lies. Everyone is in a more forgiving mood (at least temporarily) with the march of death drawing closer.Emilia Clarke (Credit: Helen Sloan/HBO)We also get the scene we’ve been waiting for since Daenerys arrived in Winterfell last week. Acting on Ser Jorah’s advice, she tries to make peace with Sansa. Even with an army of the undead on the way, this was the most tense scene of the episode. Both women are cordial to each other on the surface, and Daenerys tries to win Sansa over with friendship. There’s still one sticking point that both avoid bringing up until the end of the conversation. What happens if they win? Daenerys pointedly states she’ll take the Iron Throne. Sansa asks the real question. What about the North? Though her brother loves Daenerys and bent the knee easily, Sansa’s going to be harder to convince. She knows her people never wanted to bow to a ruler from somewhere else again. She’d prefer the North keep its independence too. She also doesn’t buy Dany’s “I’m miles away from King’s Landing to defend Jon’s home, who can say who the manipulator is?” line. Nor should we. Dany’s move to defend Winterfell is as much a political move as a loving one, perhaps more. Jon’s loyalty, and that of his people, would be easier to get if she defended the North from the dead.Before any of this tension could be resolved, their interrupted by the arrival of Theon Greyjoy. Yes, this happy reunion cuts some of the tension of the previous scene, but it doesn’t satisfy any of it. That’s by design. This episode leaves the big political questions unanswered. There just isn’t time. Whatever differences these people have, it’ll have to be sorted out after the coming battles. If they survive. That added uncertainty makes everyone’s position feel more precarious than it already is. Also, in an episode full of sadness and foreboding, it was nice having one more happy reunion. Sansa’s reaction when she saw Theon made me so happy. Both of them deserve nothing but happiness at this point. (And yeah, I ship them at this point.) That’s a ways away though, if it comes at all.Hannah Murray, John Bradley (Credit: Courtesy of HBO)There’s one point where the episode takes a truly somber turn. It’s when Samwell gives his family sword to Jorah. It quickly turns from a nice scene of honor and kindness to showing just how terrified everyone is. One line of Sam’s: “I’ll see you when this is over. I hope we survive.” It’s a little funny, but it underscores every scene that comes after it. The entire town spends the evening awake and together. Suddenly, the fact that they probably won’t survive the coming battle becomes real. They’re desperate to make their final hours mean something. They spend the evening with people they care about.Arya and the Hound pay some lip service to closure before she leaves him to his misery. Instead, she claims her weapon (a deadly cool-looking spear) and has sex with Gendry. What’s remarkable about this scene is how real the lead-up feels. It’s not meant to titillate. I mean, we’ve been watching Arya since she was 12. The actor may be an adult now, but it’s still weird. She plays the scene with confidence and cold practicality, but you can tell there’s more here than just wanting to know what it feels like. In her mind, she’s likely about to die. For all her talk about seeing a new face of Death, I think there’s a part of her that’s still scared and wants to be close to someone before it happens.Kit Harington, Maisie Williams (Credit: Helen Sloan/HBO)Meanwhile, Jon has what feels like one last meeting with his old Watch brothers. Again, it’s been so long since Jon, Sam and Edd were together. It’s both sad that they’re all that’s left of the initial group, but good that they’re all together again. As they stand atop the wall, Jon says one final time “Now our watch begins.” It’s a subtle, powerful moment. It ironically crystalizes the atmosphere of finality that blankets this episode. We don’t know who will come out of next week’s battle alive, but we’re certain it won’t be everyone. Both we the audience and the characters themselves know these may be their last hours.The absolute best of these scenes has to be the sad drunks party of Tyrion, Jamie, Tormund, Brienne, Podrick and Davos. They spend the evening depression drinking and sharing stories. Well, mostly it’s Tormund sharing the story of how he got his name. Killing a giant and suckling milk from its wife… thanks for that image, Tormund. The mood suddenly changes when it comes to light that Brienne was never knighted. She’s not a Ser, not just because of old traditions, but because she hasn’t had a king around to perform the ceremony. Jaime says you don’t need a king. Another knight can perform it too. I love the shift in tone here. The atmosphere still feels slightly jovial. Brienne even laughs it off at first, thinking Jaime’s just messing with her. He insists and everyone becomes deadly quiet. Brienne kneels and performs the ritual. I teared up hard here. We’ve known Brienne since Season Two. There’s nothing more she wants than this moment, and Jaime is the one that gives it to her. It’s just so perfect and beautiful. We see how far they’ve both come since they met. Even if she doesn’t survive, Brienne of Tarth will go out as Ser Brienne. …Oh god, this does mean she’s definitely going to die, doesn’t it.Peter Dinklage (Credit: Helen Sloan/HBO)This episode focused on characters in a way I’m not sure Game of Thrones ever got to before. It didn’t have battles or deaths or even dragons; nothing we typically associate with this show. It soared solely on the strength of its characters and the relationships they built up over seven seasons. It had tense political power plays, but more genuine human moments from people facing the end. Even Bran’s perpetual weirdness doesn’t detract from it. Though the long-awaited meeting between him and Jaime wasn’t as momentous as last week’s episode implied, it had its own understated importance. Bran, in his college kid that smoked weed once manner of speaking, holds no grudge against Jaime. He recognizes that if he hadn’t pushed him out the window, Bran wouldn’t have become who he is, and Jaime would never have changed. Some good certainly came of the thing Jaime did for love. Eventually. Still, don’t push little kids out of windows. Even if they do become all-knowing Wargs, it’s still a crappy thing to do.Of course, we can’t go a whole episode without somewhat dealing with the fact that Jon is actually a Targaryen. Not that they can do anything about it yet, of course. While visiting a statue of who he now knows is his mother, Jon reveals everything to Daenerys. It says something about the Targaryan family that her first reaction isn’t “ew I’m doing my nephew,” but “oh no, he has a claim to the throne.” If there’s any proof that Jon is a Targaryen himself, it’s that he has similar concerns instead of just being squicked out. Daenerys tries to deny it, but her arguments are noticeably weaker than usual. All she can do is meekly imply that Jon’s brother and best friend aren’t the most objective of sources. Even she knows that’s not entirely true. Deep down, I think she knows Jon has a claim to the Iron Throne. So what next? Well, they’ll have to deal with that later. If they survive. Before Dany has any time to process, they’re both called to the gates. The Night King has arrived. It’s about to pop off next week.Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on HBO.Previously on Game of ThronesGame of Thrones Season 8 Premiere RecapGame of Thrones Season 7 Finale RecapGame of Thrones Season 7 Episode 6 Recaplast_img read more

Two new massive planets detected around the star HD 27894

first_img Citation: Two new massive planets detected around the star HD 27894 (2017, June 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Panels a) and b) illustrate the 3PKM signals of planets HD 27894 b and c, phase folded to their periods of about 18 and 36 days, respectively. Panel c) illustrates the Doppler signal induced by planet d, and panel d) shows the residuals of the 3PKM. Credit: Trifonov et al., 2017. Gas giant planet HD 27894 b appears to have at least two massive companions, according to a new study published June 1 in a paper on One of the newly discovered alien worlds is a Saturn-mass planet, while the other one is a cold exoworld several times more massive than Jupiter. Located about 138 light years away from the Earth, HD 27894 is a non-active solar-type star of spectral type K2V approximately 20 percent less massive than the sun. In 2005, HD 27894 b was detected using radial velocity measurements conducted with the use of the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher (HARPS) at the La Silla Observatory in Chile.Given that HD 27894 has a low declination, visual brightness of 9.36 mag and a slow rotation period of about 44 days, it is an excellent target for HARPS observations. So after the discovery of HD 27894 b, researchers monitored the star using this spectrograph during three observational campaigns in 2006, 2013 and 2016.Now, an international team of astronomers led by Trifon Trifonov of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany has analyzed the available archival and new HARPS data in order to find additional planets in the HD 27894 system. The study detected the presence of two gas giant exoplanets, which received designations HD 27894 c and HD 27894 d.”In this paper, we present an updated orbital configuration for the HD 27894 system; according to our self-consistent N-body analysis of the RV data, the system is composed of three planets, the inner two likely in a 2:1 MMR (mean motion resonance),” the researchers wrote in the paper.According to the research, HD 27894 c has a mass of about 0.16 Jupiter masses, an orbital period of 36 days and is circling its host at a distance of 0.2 AU. HD 27894 d is much more massive, with a mass of approximately 5.4 Jupiter masses. The Jovian planet is also orbiting the star at a much larger distance than the other two worlds in the system. It takes HD 27894 d over 14 years to complete one full orbit, as it is located almost 5.5 AU from the host. Moreover, the researchers noted that their new findings show that this planetary system has a unique configuration.”The co-existence of a massive, distant, and moderately eccentric Jovian planet and a possibly resonant inner pair of massive planets makes the HD 27984 system truly unique,” the paper reads.The authors reveal that such a configuration provides important hints about the formation and evolution of this system. They assume that the inner pair of planets has probably been trapped in a 2:1 MMR by smooth migration capture, while the outer planet migrated to its current distant position before the circumstellar disk evaporated, thus halting the migration.”The planetary system around HD 27894 is important for probing planetary formation and evolution scenarios and illustrates the importance of further follow-up of radial velocity planet hosts,” the astronomers concluded. Explore further More information: This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2017 Astronomers discover ‘super-Earth’ planet orbiting nearby starlast_img read more

How to Speed Up Windows Vista

first_imgApril 1, 2008 Hear from business owners and CEOs who went through a crippling business problem and came out the other side bigger and stronger. 5 min read Get flashy: If you have an extra USB flash drive that you don’t use for much else, Vista can cache disk reads on it, thereby boosting performance beyond what you’d get from your hard disk alone. Simply insert your flash drive into a USB 2.0 slot. If the drive is fast enough, a prompt will appear, asking whether you want to open the folder for the drive or use it to ‘Speed up my system using Windows ReadyBoost’ (see the screen shot at left). Choose the latter option, and follow the remaining prompts. When you’re calculating how much space to set aside for ReadyBoost to use, Microsoft recommends that you let ReadyBoost use one to three times the amount of RAM on your system.Play your cards right: USB thumb drives aren’t the only way to boost system performance–fortunately, since USB memory sticks protruding from a computer (particularly a laptop) are easy to dislodge, and they can be a pain to remove and stow for traveling. If your PC has a reader for SD (Secure Digital) or CompactFlash cards, you can use those media in place of a USB stick to handle your ReadyBoost needs.Seize control: Speeding up Vista isn’t enough; you need to prevent the OS from slowing you down. The annoying Vista pop-ups that ask you to ‘Allow’ or ‘Deny’ many actions are examples of Vista’s User Account Control at work. The process makes you safer, but your productivity may suffer if you must constantly respond to UAC’s demands. For ways to reduce the intrusiveness of this feature, see “Annoyance Buster: Make Vista’s User Account Control Work for You.”See if your hardware is slowing you down: In Explorer, right-click Computer and choose Properties. Next to ‘Rating’, click Windows Experience Index. The item with the lowest score is the biggest drain on your getting a better Vista experience. For example, if the lowest score is attributed to Graphics, it may be time to invest in a new graphics card.Sideline sidebar: If you don’t need the little “gadget” doo-dads in the Vista sidebar, get rid of them. Right-click the Windows Sidebar icon in the taskbar tray and choose Exit. Open the Control Panel and launch Windows Sidebar Properties in the ‘Appearance and Personalization’ category. Uncheck Start sidebar when Windows starts and click OK (see the screen shot at left).What would Windows do? If you have an older or less capable video card, click Start, type systempropertiesperformance, and press Enter. Click Continue if prompted by User Account Control. Select Adjust for best performance. Or cherry-pick the options you can’t live without. (Fewer checkmarks mean better performance.) Click OK.More Ways to Accelerate VistaDis-Service yourself: Don’t let unneeded software components waste memory or put a ball-and-chain on your Windows startup. Click Start, type msconfig, and press Enter. Confirm if prompted by User Account Control. But be careful! Click the Services tab, and uncheck only the services you’re certain you don’t need. To be safe, uncheck one, reboot, and see if everything still works fine before moving on to another. Do your homework via Online help or a Web search before experimenting!Here are some services that you might be able to do without: If you don’t work interactively with a remote computer, don’t run programs from a server, and don’t need Remote Desktop, uncheck Terminal Services. If you can live without Windows diagnostic and troubleshooting services, uncheck Diagnostic Policy Service, Diagnostic Service Host, and Diagnostic System Host. If you don’t want Windows to index your files for searching, uncheck Windows Search. Other Services options to consider disabling include ‘Fax’, ‘Offline Files’, ‘Smart Card’, ‘Smart Card Removal Policy’, ‘Themes’, and ‘Windows Error Reporting Service’.Keep your disk in shape: The same advice you’ve heard for years is true for Vista, too: Delete the useless clutter on your hard disk and defragment it. To do the former, click Start, type Cleanup, and press Enter. Specify the drive and files to clean and click OK. You may need to repeat the steps for multiple drives. To defrag your drives, click Start, type Defragmenter, and press Enter. Use this dialog box to set up a time to defrag your disk regularly at a time when you are away from your system. Vista has an automatic defragmenting feature that may kick in at inopportune times; scheduling your defrags will help ensure that these operations don’t occur while you’re working.Be a power pig: If you don’t mind spending more, you can boost your system’s performance by adjusting its power options. In the Control Panel, launch Power Options in the ‘System and Maintenance’ category. Select High Performance, close the dialog box (see the screen shot at left), and prepare yourself for a higher electric bill.Keep on tweaking: For still more performance tweaks, check out my article, “Shift Any Version of Windows Into High Gear.”Want to squeeze even more out of Vista? We can help you out with 20 great downloads that make Vista work better, tips on how to stream video and music from your Vista PC to your HDTV and solutions to Vista’s defrag mysteries. Meanwhile, Contributing Editor Steve Bass has assembled a treasure trove of Windows tips of his own. And in case reading isn’t your thing, we have videos, too: Learn how to speed up Vista’s boot-up time, improve Vista’s performance, or install Vista from scratch. Or just watch a bunch of PC World editors complain about Vista. Listen Now Brought to you by PCWorld Problem Solvers with Jason Feiferlast_img read more