Two killed in North 24 Parganas district as violence continues in West Bengal

first_imgAt least two people were killed and three others severely injured when bombs were hurled at them late Monday night in the Kankinara area of West Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district, police said on Tuesday.The Trinamool Congress (TMC) claimed that the victims were supporters of the party and were targeted by miscreants hired by the BJP, a charge denied by the saffron party. The two deceased were identified as Mohammed Mukhtar and Mohammed Halim. Three people have been arrested for their alleged involvement in the incident, the police said. State minister and TMC’s district president Jyotipriya Mallick alleged that the victims were targeted by miscreants hired by the BJP because they had voted for the ruling party in the state in the recently-concluded Lok Sabha elections. BJP MP of Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency Arjun Singh, however, rubbished the allegations, saying that the incident was the result of a family feud and has no connection with politics. The incident took place on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday at around 1 am in Baruipara, which is part of the Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency, when family members of Mr. Mukhtar were sitting outside, according to officials.“Halim died on the spot, while Mukhtar succumbed at the hospital. A critically injured Mukhtar’s wife is undergoing treatment at a nearby hospital along with two others,” a senior police officer said. Following the incident, a huge number of policemen, along with RAF personnel, have been deployed in the area. When contacted, state Assistant Director General (Law and Order) Gyanwant Singh said that he was collecting detailed information about the incident. Meanwhile, the BJP claimed on Monday night that a supporter of the party was strangled to death allegedly for chanting “Jai Shri Ram” by workers of the TMC in the state’s Howrah district. Though police confirmed the death of 43-year-old Samatul Doloi, whose body was found in a field in Sarpota village under the Amta Police Station limits, they did not give away the cause of the death.last_img read more

Jayarajan to be reinducted tomorrow

first_imgThiruvananthapuram, Aug 13 (PTI) CPI(M) leader E P Jayarajan, who had resigned from the state cabinet two years ago over nepotism charges, will be sworn in as a minister in the Pinarayi Vijayan-led LDF government tomorrow. The LDF state committee met here today and gave its nod for bringing back Jayarajan. This is the second time that the Kannur strongman ismaking his way into the ministry. The swearing-in will be held at the Raj Bhavan at 10am, LDF convener M Vijayaraghavan said. Jayarajan, who had held the industries and sports portfolio, had resigned in October 2016 over nepotism charges. He ran into trouble after the appointment of his nephew P K Sudheer Nambiar — son of Kannur MP P K Sreemathi — as the managing director of Kerala Industrial Enterprises Ltd. However, the vigilance and anti-corruption bureau, which probed the case, had absolved him of the charges. PTI UD APR HMB HMBlast_img read more

FIFA 19: How to get the game half price

first_imgeSports FIFA 19: How to get the brand new Xbox One or PS4 game for just £35 or $47 Goal Last updated 1 year ago 00:00 6/13/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) FIFA 19 Neymar and Ronaldo eSports Premier League Goal provides a full and detailed step-by-step guide on how you can purchase the video game for just over half the price Fresh off the new announcement of FIFA 19, the latest installment of the popular video game franchise, fans are already eager to get their hands of the latest edition of the game which features Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar as cover stars.This iteration marks the return of the Champions League with the game set to be released on September 28 – and Goal gives you an exclusive look on how you can get the game for significantly cheaper than the store price as a pre-order, outlining the steps you will need to take.How can I purchase FIFA 19 for cheaper? Neymar FIFA 19 Article continues below Editors’ Picks Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Arsenal would be selling their soul with Mourinho move It will seem like a meticulous process, but with the added benefits of buying the new game at a significantly cheaper price at nearly £60 ($80). You can do so by following the instructions below, first discovered here.Through purchasing it via the Argentina store price as well as including the EA access discount, along with another 10 per cent off for buying it in-game in FIFA 18, users can buy FIFA 19 for just under £35 ($47).To do, so, first use the Fly VPN through Thailand, as well as Connectify to share the VPN wirelessly. This must be done via console, with the site taking you to the UK store.The following will be needed: A Windows laptop or PC with wireless connection, a free subscription to Fly VPN, and a free download of Connectify for Windows.Step 1: Under the console settings, change region to Argentina (but keep the language as English). Attempt to make a random purchase (doesn’t matter what as it won’t actually be processed) just to set up an Argentine billing address. Once the address and card details are added, return to the dashboard without completing the purchase. This will only have to be done once per region.Step 2: Disconnect your ethernet cable (if you are using one).Step 3: Download both programs (Fly VPN and Connectify) if you haven’t already done so.Step 4: Open up the Fly VPN and, once installed and you’ve logged in, connect your PC to Thailand.Step 5: Open connectify and set up a hot-spot with the Tapv9 adaptor. If set up correctly, you should see a green check mark at the top which will signal an active and successful Internet connection.Step 6: Connect your network to the hotspot that the connectify has created.Step 7: Open up FIFA, click the link from the main menu to get the extra discount and purchase it as normal. It should cost 1160 Argentine pesos. You may be charged a foreign purchase fee, though it may be minimal.When is FIFA 19 released? Like past editions of the game, FIFA 19 will be released at the end of September and will be available on all the big platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC and Nintendo Switch.The Ultimate and Champions editions of the game, however, will only be available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.Similar to FIFA 18, there will be three different editions: the standard edition, Champions edition and Ultimate edition. The latter two editions replace the ‘Ronaldo’ and ‘Icons’ editions of FIFA 18.  Gamers have the option of getting the game three days early – on September 25 – by pre-ordering, which also carries some quirks depending on what edition you purchase.How much does FIFA 19 cost originally?The new release will have prices starting from around £49.99 ($69.99) for the standard edition across all platforms.The special editions are expected to cost up to £80-90 ($110-125). Last year the ‘Icon Edition’ allowed gamers who splashed out £89.99 to play the title three days earlier than everyone else.Gamers who spend extra on special editions usually get extra FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT) player packs to bolster their new team on the popular game mode. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Alphaliner Vessel Demand Rises with New Alliances

first_imgzoom With the launch of the new carrier alliances on the east-west trades on April 1, 2017, the demand for vessels and the final tally of containership tonnage is set to increase by 5% in TEU capacity and by 4% in vessel count compared to March, according to Alphaliner.Compared against the peak season deployment of summer 2016, total vessel capacity planned for this summer on the revamped Asia-Europe, Transpacific and Transatlantic routes will be 2% higher.At the same time, the number of deployed ships is set to fall as carriers continue upgrading services to larger vessel sizes.“The tonnage removed as a result of Hanjin Shipping’s withdrawal from the east-west trades in September 2016 will be fully restored with the new services launched on April 1 by the 2M+HMM, OCEAN Alliance and THE Alliance, as well as various independent carriers including newcomer SM Line who kicked off its new Transpacific service last week,” Alphaliner said.Of the 913 ships to be deployed on the east-west services, carriers have secured most of the required tonnage, with some seven ships still to be named, according to Alphaliner’s data.An analysis of the vessel deployment by size range showed increases in the 14,000-20,000 TEU segment as well as the 5,500-10,000 TEU size segment, while the 10,000-13,300 TEU sector shrunk together with the smaller 3,000-5,100 TEU sector.last_img read more

Provincial Funding Helps Fishermans Cove Build Bright Future

first_imgThe province is helping Fisherman’s Cove in Eastern Passage make upgrades and develop a strategic plan so the popular summer destination can provide people the best experience for years to come. MLA Becky Kent on behalf of Communities Culture and Heritage Minister Leonard Preyra and Economic and Rural Development Minister Graham Steele, today, June 25, toured the upgraded boardwalk with Fisherman’s Cove Development Association board member Earl Gosse. She announced a strategic plan is being developed to help build the area as a cultural, business and tourist hub. “Thousands of people visit Fisherman’s Cove every year for its natural beauty and to experience our rich culture and heritage by the sea,” said Ms. Kent. “It is important that the province invest in this community asset and work with the amazing staff and board to make Fisherman’s Cove as beautiful and as accessible as it can be for families to spend time together. “Coming here, visiting the buildings, walking the boardwalk, and enjoying the sand on the beach is a real treat for people, and I have no doubt that it will leave a lasting impression on families and visitors from all over the world.” The province is investing $22,500 from the Community Jobs and Facilities Improvement Program for upgrades, and repairs to several buildings. The boardwalk improvements were finished earlier this month and include a new section and leveling existing sections and a stage for music and other performances was also built. “So far, I think people are really happy with the repairs to the boardwalk,” said Mr. Gosse. “People were starting to get worried that it would get run down, and they wouldn’t be able to use it anymore. We made the boardwalk our first priority, and now it’s built well enough that it can withstand the kind of storms, high tides and pounding surf that we get out here. It’s built to last.” The province is investing $27,260 from the Community Economic Development Program, which helps communities and not-for-profit organizations identify opportunities to help grow the local economy. Fisherman’s Cove offers an affordable, popular location for small businesses, and venue for festivals and events that generate economic activity for the Eastern Passage area. For more information about Fisherman’s Cove, go to www.fishermanscove.ns.ca.last_img read more

Defence chief admits slowerthanexpected growth in female representation

first_imgOTTAWA — Canada’s top military officer admits there has been slower progress than expected to get more women into the Canadian Forces.New figures show there has been only a small increase in the number of women in the military over the last two years, but General Jonathan Vance says he remains committed to his goal of having women represent one-quarter of all military personnel by 2026.“I’m pushing for 25 per cent women,” Vance told The Canadian Press. “I would rather be criticized for trying and failing and making significant incremental growth than for not trying at all.”The Canadian Forces has struggled for years to increase the number of women, visible minorities and Indigenous People in the ranks, prompting some in the past to question whether its targets should be revised downward.Vance instead publicly asserted in February 2016, shortly after taking command of the Forces, that he wanted one in four service members to be women by 2026. At that time, barely 15 per cent of service members were women.The latest figures provided by the Department of National Defence show at the beginning of January that had grown to 15.7 per cent.“It’s not going up as fast as I thought it might,” Vance said.But, he added, “we know for sure that there’s a healthier workplace with a better gender balance. We know that. So I refuse to abandon the percentage goal.”The 25 per cent target was part of a push to make the Forces more reflective of Canadian society. It was given added importance given concurrent efforts to eradicate sexual misconduct in the military, which had been flagged only the year before as a significant problem in the ranks.The Trudeau government has also made growing female representation in United Nations peacekeeping a foreign-policy priority.The military has had noticeably more success with regards to representation of visible minorities, which grew to 8.6 per cent from 7.4 per cent in January 2017. The percentage of Indigenous People remained largely unchanged at 2.8 per cent.Numerous measures and initiatives have been rolled out over the past three years to increase the number of women in uniform, including targeted recruiting campaigns, improvements to family support and the focus on eliminating sexual misconduct.And there have been positive signs, Vance said, including a growing number of women studying to become officers at the Royal Military College of Canada and more women taking over senior positions in the Forces.“Right now retention of women numbers are better than men on a per capita basis,” he added. “So retention of women is improving. That’s a good thing.”Vance said one thing he will not do is lower the standards that people must meet to join the Forces. Instead, he said military officials must think creatively and find new ways to meet the goal.“The numbers are going up slowly, and maybe that’s just how it’s going to be,” he said. “It may not be a per cent a year. It may be 0.7 per cent a year. We’re going to try. But I believe you can get to 25 per cent of women in the Armed Forces.”— Follow @leeberthiaume on Twitter.Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Justin Trudeau takes aim at NDP over EUCanada trade pact as summit

first_imgMONTREAL — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is calling out New Democrats after their leader encouraged French lawmakers to reject the comprehensive trade agreement between the European Union and Canada.Jagmeet Singh, along with Green Leader Elizabeth May, signed a letter this week urging politicians in France not to ratify the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, or CETA.As an EU-Canada summit wrapped up in Montreal Thursday, Trudeau asked who Canada should trade freely with if not its European allies and called the NDP stance “unfortunate.”So far, fewer than half of the EU’s 28 member states have ratified CETA, which nonetheless went into force provisionally in September 2017, eliminating tariffs on the vast majority of goods flowing between Canada and the EU.The benefits have been uneven, as European businesses ramped up exports right out of the gate while Canadian exporters were slower to boost trade.In 2018, Canada’s exports to the EU increased by seven per cent to more than $44 billion, with aluminum and motor vehicles and parts seeing the biggest gains. But the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance says agri-food exports to the EU have dropped 10 per cent since CETA’s 2017 entry into force.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Phosphates to turn Morocco into worlds major player for food security

first_imgTaroudant- With the growing food demand and the increase of the world population, Morocco will become one of the world’s major players in securing food security and fighting hunger across the planet.In a new series called “Elementary Business,” the BBC’s Justin Rowlatt said “Morocco has a stranglehold on the world’s phosphorous market.” “This is bigger than OPEC,” he said.Since phosphorous is used to make fertilizers which are essential component of modern farming, an increase in the price of phosphorous would lead to higher food prices. “And while phosphorous is everywhere, almost all the mineable phosphorous is in…Morocco,” the release saidA research  conducted by the Arizona State University considering phosphorus “a dwindling nutrient essential for food growth”Entitled “Secure Food and Water Supply Depend on Phosphorus”, the research linked food security with the availability of phosphorus which is an element found in phosphate.The largest deposits of phosphate are located in Morocco, with a production capacity estimated to 19 million tons per year.The Cherifien Office of Phosphates (Office Cherifian des Phosphates, OCP), which was founded in August 7, 1920 in Morocco and transformed into a joint-stock company (OCP) in 2008, is the world’s largest exporter of raw phosphate, phosphoric acid and phosphate fertilizers.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributedlast_img read more

Video Moroccans Escape Fire in Marrakech

Rabat – The intense video shows several female employees and customers of a beauty and massage parlor desperately escaping through first floor windows of an apartment building connected to the parlor, as smoke pours out behind them.The fire is thought to have originated in the parlor, though no specific cause for the fire has yet been confirmed.Large crowds can be seen gathered to see the spectacle, which occurred in the central district of Geuliz in Marrakech earlier this week. One man is seen helping the women as they jump onto the balconies of the shops below as they seek safety. Fortunately, no people are thought to have been badly hurt in the incident.ALC Fès Talent Show read more

Closing Bell TSX unchanged on modest Chinese data disappointing European data

TORONTO — The Toronto stock market was barely changed at the close Tuesday amid a mixed outlook on global manufacturing from some of the world’s largest economies.Here are the closing numbersTSX — 15,125.67 -3.33 0.02%S&P 500 —  1,982.77 -11.52 0.58%Dow — 17,055.87 -116.81 –0.68%Nasdaq —4,508.69 -19.00 -0.42%The S&P/TSX composite index dipped 3.33 points to 15,125.67, while the loonie lost 0.31 of a cent to 90.34 cents US following disappointing economic news in Canada.Statistics Canada reported retail sales slipped 0.1% in July to $42.5 billion, well short of the 0.5% gain that economists had expected, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters.Meanwhile, U.S. markets were down sharply after the American military launched overnight airstrikes against Islamic State military strongholds in Syria and Iraq. The Dow Jones industrials plunged 116.81 points to 17,055.87, while the Nasdaq dropped 19 points to 4,508.69 and the S&P 500 index lost 11.52 points to 1,982.77.In economic news, the latest reading on Chinese manufacturing came in better than expected and eased some concerns that growth has stalled in the world’s second-largest economy.The HSBC manufacturing survey for September came in at 50.5, up from 50.2 in August. Anything above 50 indicates an expansion. Analysts had expected it to fall for a second month.The Chinese data helped boost commodity markets. December gold, considered a safe haven during volatile times, was up $4.10 to US$1,222 an ounce as the gold sector on the TSX led advancers, up 2.76% after two days of losses. The November crude contract rose 69 cents to US$91.56 a barrel. December copper was unchanged at US$3.04 a pound.There wasn’t the same kind of relief in Europe, where more signs indicated that the 18-country eurozone economy hasn’t found renewed momentum despite stimulus measures from the European Central Bank.In its monthly survey, financial information company Markit said its purchasing managers’ index for the eurozone — a closely watched gauge of business activity — fell to a nine-month low of 52.3 in September from the previous month’s 52.5. The crisis in Ukraine and the sanctions between the West and Russia as well as a general sense of pessimism about the eurozone economy were cited as reasons.“The recovery in Europe is on weak footing,” said Ben Jang, a portfolio manager at Nicola Wealth Management in Vancouver.“Any news like this will cause more volatility in the market. It’s also scaling back market sentiment in terms of how strong growth will be. We’re looking at a slower growth environment across the board.”Jang said new measures by the Obama administration also weighed on markets, with investors unsure of what the regulations will spell for American and European companies in the future.Washington announced a “tax inversion” regulation as part of its effort to crack down on American companies that seek to reincorporate overseas to avoid paying U.S. taxes. The new regulations, which are now in effect, bars some techniques used by companies reduce their taxes.“The action of the Treasury was more aggressive and more sweeping than most people had though,” he said. “(But) It didn’t address everything and it’s not comprehensive reform. It also didn’t address the larger underlying issue, where corporate taxes are too high in the U.S. and they’ll eventually need to come down.”TOP STORIESTim Hortons, Burger King say $12.5B tie-up still on despite U.S. inversions crackdownCan BlackBerry’s new Passport ‘wow’ in the shadow of Apple’s blockbuster iPhone debut?Jimmy Choo to step out on London market in challenging times for luxury goodsYara, CF in talks to create $27-billion global fertilizer giant to rival Canada’s Potash CorpAlibaba stock declines for second day after completing record US$25B IPOWHAT’S ON DECK WEDNESDAYECONOMIC NEWSUNITED STATES10 a.m.New Home sales (Aug): Economists expect 4.4% rise CORPORATE NEWSCANADAAgf Management Ltd Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 17¢ a share UNITED STATESAccenture  Q4 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.10 a share Paychex Inc Q1 earnings: Analysts expect 46¢ a share read more

Liebherr trolley assist T 236 fleet to operate at Erzberg

first_imgAustrian iron ore miner VA Erzberg intends to electrify the main haul road of its Erzberg mine site and operate a fleet of T 236 trucks from 2021 under trolley assist.Liebherr is not new to trolley having eight T 284 trucks under trolley at FQM’s Sentinel copper mine in Zambia and with its large T 284 fleet at Cobre Panama set to operate under trolley in the coming years. But this deal is significant involving the much smaller T 236.This electrification project would increase Erzberg life of mine significantly and reduce CO2 emission on site. The statement added: “Liebherr is proud to participate and support this outstanding initiative of VA Erzberg.”Representatives of VA Erzberg and Liebherr celebrated this new collaboration at the Liebherr booth at Bauma.last_img read more

Kodak to stop making inkjet printers

first_imgLast month Lexmark announced that it was shutting down all inkjet printer R&D and manufacturing over the next three years due to the very thin margins involved. Now, Kodak has announced it is also struggling in the cutthroat market and will exit the consumer inkjet printer business entirely.Kodak has already exited the digital camera market, and with printers disappearing from store shelves you’ll be hard pressed to find a Kodak consumer product before long. Anyone using Kodak inkjet printers need not worry though, as Kodak intends to continue supporting products with ink and honoring guarantees. However, we won’t see any new printer models appearing and existing stock of printer hardware should disappear at some point next year.Kodak’s reasons for doing this are similar to Lexmark’s. The market and profits just aren’t there anymore, and Kodak specifically points to mobile devices and sending, rather than printing pictures, being a major factor. Consumers just don’t print anywhere near as much as they used to.No consumer inkjet printers means 200 more jobs are disappearing at the company. However, Kodak will continue to play a part in the printing business, but focusing on commercial printing only.It’s unlikely Kodak’s management didn’t see this decision coming a long way off. We all store out photos in digital form now due to the terabytes of storage hard drives offer and the fact the images don’t degrade like printed versions do. There will be an ongoing need for consumer printers, but the market will continue to get shrink to the point where, if you want some images printed out you’ll probably just go visit a printing booth rather than using a printer you own.Read more at Reuterslast_img read more

The UK and Canada are cutting the cost of processing claims why

first_imgTypically the recommended ranges of awards are categorised as minor, moderate and severe – not dissimilar to the Book of Quantum used in Ireland by the PIAB.Guidelines published since 2013 allowed for a 10% increase recommended by a report on civil litigation costs together with inflation-linked increases.Another element of the UK system is a scheme that allows the NHS to recover money for the treatment provided to an injured party who subsequently successfully claims compensation.The whiplash scale in CanadaAnother country that has been to the forefront in pioneering efforts to reduce compensation awards in personal injury cases is Canada.The Whiplash Associated Disorder scale, devised by a task force in Quebec, was one of the first attempts at classifying the severity of symptoms of soft tissue injuries and has formed the basis for claims assessment in other jurisdictions including Australia and the US. It has also been endorsed by the PIC in Ireland.Although Canadian provinces and territories have their own individual legal system, most have some form of “no fault” insurance where a claimant deals directly with their own insurance firm regardless of who is at fault for their injuries.Some also allow the person who is faultless to sue the party who caused the injuries, although there can be limits or thresholds about what is permissible.In Ontario, limits have been imposed since 1990 which only allows claims for compensation if the pain and suffering meet a certain level of severity.Legal action is only permitted in cases of fatality or where the injured party suffers permanent and serious physical, mental or psychological injury or disfigurement.At the same time a “statutory deductible” amount, which represents a type of excess that must be paid by the claimant out of their own pocket, was applied to all cases meeting the severity threshold. It currently stands at CAD$30,000 (€20,217).Amid concern that Ontario still had comparatively high level of awards within Canada, the provincial government subsequently imposed a cap on the amounts that could be charged for independent medical assessments.In 2010 the Minor Injury Guideline, which covers common traffic injuries including whiplash, was introduced on a statutory basis for the purpose of limiting compensation for such injuries to CAD$3,500 (€2,360).Other initiatives to nip cost in the budFollowing a further review of its claims system in 2017, the Ontario government is now implementing several other initiatives including a “standard treatment plan” to ensure people with the most common injuries from traffic collisions receive timely, appropriate and effective treatment.The measure is seen as switching the focus to appropriate care for victims rather than cash payouts which it is hoped will further lower costs.The author of the 2017 review, David Marshall, a health and safety expert, stressed that soft tissue injures should not normally develop into permanent impairments “if they are treated properly to begin with”.He expressed concern that the level of injuries associated with motor insurance claims was “a warning sign that medical care is not being properly handled”.While seeing the merits in setting thresholds for certain claims like in Ontario, the PIC said there was a counterargument that they could set a “target” to beat and could act as an incentive for exaggerated injuries to ensure claimants obtained compensation.As the PIC concluded there is a myriad of approaches to personal injury compensation worldwide but no one jurisdiction has a system which should be directly mirrored in Ireland. Tuesday 10 Sep 2019, 6:00 AM 10,597 Views Tue 6:01 AM 21 Comments By Seán McCárthaigh 09.09.19 ‘We’re being fed this lie’: Exposing the myths of Ireland’s ‘compo culture’ https://jrnl.ie/4801749 AT ITS HEART the insurance industry is built around events that lack certainty with consumers willing, and sometimes obligated, to take out policies to ensure they are compensated if some undesired incident ever comes to pass.However, the one issue on which most stakeholders are currently not in any doubt about is that the insurance industry in Ireland isn’t working properly with many policy holders struggling to finance the rising cost of premiums.The justification for high insurance costs is the subject of much debate and controversy together with the suggestion – mainly from the insurance industry itself – of a “compensation culture”. That suggestion was thoroughly dissected and found wanting in this Noteworthy exclusive from Peter Bodkin yesterday. Today, we zone in on those personal injuries cases that do look at whether the situation in Ireland is replicated across the industry worldwide.An analysis of claims costs and awards for damages between different jurisdictions is notoriously difficult and leaves many attempts at such research open to charges of not comparing like with like.Efforts to assess which country’s system is more efficient can be problematic due to different definitions, the lack of detailed data and the nature of personal injuries systems in particular countries as well as approaches to the onus or burden of proof on a claimant.Such difficulties at trying to benchmark the number and size of compensation claims of different countries without the risk of comparing apples with oranges means there is a dearth of forensic research on the relative strengths and weaknesses of different systems – a scenario that may not unduly trouble the insurance industry.The recent report by the Personal Injuries Commission, which was chaired by former President of the High Court, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, highlighted how general damages for whiplash injuries in the Republic are 4.4 times more expensive than in England and Wales at €19,862 compared to €3,798.That said, our Noteworthy investigation yesterday found that total awards for personal injury cases fell 28% between 2014 and 2018; and that the average award dropped 19% during the same period.The main source of data available in Europe in relation to awards for whiplash injuries is sourced from the insurance industry including its EU-wide representative body, Insurance Europe.However, much of its current data which allows for some level of comparison has no relevant data for Ireland. It showed that the average cost of claims ranged between €1,123 in Malta and €5,856 in France.In addition, most EU countries apart from the Republic and the UK operate civil law systems which limits the value of any comparisons that could be drawn.The scale of the industry across Europe is impressive with motor insurance premiums worth €135.3bn in 2016 with total claims in the same year costing €103.5bn.The first major cross-border study on whiplash-related injuries by Insurance Europe’s predecessor, the Comité Éuropéen des Assurances, in 2004 established that whiplash injuries represented from 3% of all personal injury claims in France to 76% in Britain. At the time average claims for whiplash awards ranged from €1,500 in Finland to €35,000 in Switzerland.Although Ireland was not included in that landmark report, the Personal Injuries Assessment Board has estimated that on average whiplash claims account for almost half of all personal injuries cases in the Republic.How the UK makes the claims process more efficient for everyoneAs our closest neighbour with a similar legal system, the much lower average compensation payouts in England and Wales warrant closer scrutiny for the purpose of trying to replicate measures in Ireland which would lead to more cost-efficient process for the processing and evaluating of claims.The system in the UK revolves around the Claims Portal, a not-for-profit facilitator of claims established in 2013 to minimise the need for uncontested cases to proceed to court and through which all applications for compensation must be made.Any claim related to soft tissue injuries is required to obtain a medical report from an accredited expert through MedCo, another portal system established in 2015 to facilitate the sourcing of fixed cost medical reports in whiplash injury claims.MedCo, a non-profit organisation funded by the Association of British Insurers, provides accreditation for medical experts who have undergone a mandatory minimum level of training and ensures the quality of medical legal reports.All commissioners of medical reports, such as solicitor firms, must also register with MedCo as part of a measure designed to prevent any financial link between the expert and the person commissioning a report.In response to a request for a medical report, MedCo provides a random but fair shortlist of medical experts from which a solicitor must make a selection.MedCo said its purpose is “to improve the quality and consistency of medical reports and to remove potential conflicts of interest by ensuring there are no financial links between law firms and the medical experts who provide advice.”Why do we not have it here?However, the PIC has ruled out introducing a similar initiative in Ireland as legal advice received from the Attorney General and a number of Government departments said a mandatory panel of expert witnesses would represent an impermissible interference with a claimant’s constitutional rights in taking a case before the Irish courts.The MedCo medical report forms part of a “settlement pack” issued to the defendant, who can accept the suggested level of award or make a counter-offer.When the parties fail to agree the compensation level via the Claims Portal, a case can be transferred for a court hearing.While mirroring the role carried out by PIAB in Ireland, the Claims Portal is different in that awards are based on discussions between the parties and on a medical report not sourced from either claimant or defendant.Legislative reformThe Association of British Insurers claims the highly competitive market in the UK (there are almost 250 firms providing motor insurance) combined with legislative reform are keeping the cost of motor insurance down.The Civil Liability Act 2018 which was passed in December and introduces a tariff scheme for soft tissue injury claims seen as a major attempt by the UK government to address the rising cost of motor insurance.Although not expected to come fully into force before April 2020, the tariffs will apply to all whiplash injuries to the neck, back and shoulders lasting up to two years with an additional sum awarded where a psychological injury is involved.The legislation contains a provision banning the settlement of whiplash claims before a medical report has been obtained.It also provides for the Treasury – the British equivalent of the Department of Finance – to make regulations requiring insurers to report to a financial watchdog about savings made as a result of the reforms.Introducing the legislation in the House of Commons last year, the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, David Gauke, said it aimed to make the personal injury compensation system “fairer, more certain and more sustainable for claimants, defendants, the taxpayer and motorists.”Mr Gauke said the legislation was prompted by the fact that almost 200,000 more personal injury claims were made in 2017-2018 than in 2005-2006, even though the actual number of reported motor accidents over the same period had fallen by 55,000.“Of those claims, we estimate that around 85% were for whiplash-related injuries. That is higher than in any other European jurisdiction,” said Mr Gauke.He also expressed concern that it had become “culturally acceptable” to make claims for very low-level injuries.Promise to pass on the savingsThe legislation has been welcomed by the insurance industry in the UK with several firms including Aviva promising to pass on 100% of savings to their customers.Although the PIC also recommended the establishment of a specialist fraud investigation bureau within An Garda Síochána that would be modelled on the UK’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department, the proposal has been rejected by the Garda Commissioner Drew Harris who voiced his preference for the problem to be tackled on a divisional basis rather than through a centralised unit.While the UK tariff has yet to be determined it was proposed that damages would range from £225 to £3,725 – a rate significantly lower than the current level of common law damages.To date the UK’s Judicial College has published guidelines for the assessment of general damages which sets out financial ranges for common types of injury.They are designed to set out a clear and logical framework and be used as “a starting point” for the assessment of damages while also allowing judges unfettered discretion to the specific facts of individual cases into account.The guidelines are reviewed every two years and are recalibrated based on actual awards made by courts. Related Read Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article The UK and Canada are cutting the cost of processing claims – why can’t Ireland? Part two of our Noteworthy probe into costly insurance premiums looks at legislative and procedural steps taken in other countries to tackle the issue. Share10 Tweet Email1 Short URLlast_img read more

Nine buys into Yellow Brick Road

first_imgNine Entertainment has invested in Yellow Brick Road, the financial services company founded and chaired by Wizard Home Loans founder Mark Bouris. The $13 million deal has taken place as Nine looks for other areas to invest, other than in traditional media. The agreement is effectively an advertising partnership, with half of the $13 million to be provided in the form of ads in Nine’s various businesses over five years, and the other half in cash.Nine will be granted a 19.9 percent stake in Yellow Brick Road, and a board representative under this deal. Yellow Brick Road was established by Bouris in 2007 and has almost 60 shopfronts. It offers financial advice, management, execution and administration services, and related professional services in areas of taxation, accounting, estate planning, insurance and finance broking. Bouris will remain Yellow Brick Road’s largest shareholder, holding 26.7 percent of the group, from 33.4 percent previously. Senior members of Yellow Brick Road’s management team also hold stakes in the business. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

I accidentally spent a day using my phone as my wallet Heres

first_img Sprint Best Buy Apple Pay vs. Samsung Pay vs. Google Pay 7:31 Mentioned Above Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus (64GB, Lilac Purple) Tags See it $699 See It Read next: Everything we know about Samsung’s foldable phone for Feb. 20Read also: New phone designs aim to shake up MWC 2019 CNET may get a commission from retail offers. See It 11 Photos See It I was 30 miles from home when it hit me that my purse was at home, and I’d have to spend the day without my credit cards, ID or any cash. The only thing I had — apart from my backpack and puffy purple jacket — was my Samsung-loaned Galaxy S9 Plus review unit as my only source of money and ID. Good thing that months before I had loaded my credit card number into Samsung Pay, Samsung’s mobile wallet for contactless payments. That would have to do.Samsung Pay and I are old friends. More powerful and more forgiving than Google Pay and Apple Pay, it works on almost every terminal that reads a payment card’s magnetic stripe, which means I’d be able to pay for more things in more places than with either mobile payment rival alone. Only one thing worried me. I’ve used Samsung Pay all over the US, Asia and Europe, but I’ve never been forced to use it solo. I’ve always had the benefit of my credit and ATM cards as backup, and my driver’s license for ID. Being forcibly removed from them, without any sort of safety net, would be a real-life test of mobile payment’s power and influence. The best thing about ride-hailing services like Lyft is that you don’t need to carry a card or cash. Lyft We always talk about leaving the wallet at home, but does the infrastructure exist to make that work? Could I really get through a day using Samsung Pay and nothing else? It’s not Samsung’s fault that the answer was no, not quite.The ride, checkMorning travel wasn’t a problem, and that’s probably why I didn’t discover my mistake until I was 30 miles from home. Ordinarily, I’d have realized my purse wasn’t with the rest of my stuff a few minutes after leaving, slapped my forehead and sheepishly gone back to fetch it. Not this time. Share your voicecenter_img Phones Online You can only do these cool things with Samsung Pay in Korea — for now (pictures) Preview • Why the Galaxy S9 Plus is the ‘better’ Samsung phone this year Amazon $349 Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Review • Galaxy S9 Plus is still worth buying, but wait a month — here’s why Mobile payments Samsung Comments 24 $699 $354 Now playing: Watch this: This time I’d called a Lyft to take me where I needed to go. That requires just my phone, not a travel card like the Bay Area’s Clipper system for the trains, ferries and buses. Already, that’s a sign of the phone standing in for the contents of my purse.Breakfast, checkI obviously needed something to clear the cobwebs clouding my sanity: coffee. I could have tried Samsung Pay with the classic-style swipe reader at the Marriott-owned Starbucks franchise across the street, but the Starbucks app on my phone did the trick simply and quickly. Whew. No purse needed there, either.google-payPortable payment terminals make tableside mobile payments easy. Google Lunch, not so muchFast-casual eateries around the Bay Area have gotten good at outfitting their point-of-sale terminals with mobile payment readers. There’s often an attachment on top of the customer-facing payment terminal, or a white plastic puck from Square that you can hover your phone over. But there was no mobile payment option at my lunch spot, a sit-down affair I had planned with a friend.Restaurants here that value traditional service seem to keep their swipe terminals out of sight from customers. When I asked if this business could accommodate mobile payments, our server shook his head. No, no it could not. I didn’t want to press the matter, offering to go back to the cash register so I could activate Samsung Pay. But I did wish the US followed Europe’s model, where servers bring a handheld payment terminal to your table, a method that nearly always works with Samsung Pay (often to the server’s surprise).Fortunately my friend was there to foot the bill. Well, I suppose this is what peer-to-peer payment services such as Zelle and Venmo are for. The Zelle mobile app lets you send money from one bank account to another.The Zelle mobile app lets you send money from one bank account to another.  Zelle Cash withdrawal: Genius strikes, then fizzlesLeaving lunch on the way to pick up supplies at the Walgreens pharmacy and convenience store, I spied an outpost of my bank. That’s when I remembered that I could use the banking app on the Galaxy S9 to initiate an ATM withdrawal. If I could take out some cash, I wouldn’t feel so unilaterally reliant on my phone, especially if it lost battery power. Feeding the bank card from Samsung Pay to my banking app wasn’t a problem. There was a clear method for that in the Wallet subsection of the app itself, and a bank attendant was there to get me started on the right path. There was just one problem — I had set up Samsung Pay with a credit card, but not my ATM account, so a cash withdrawal through the credit card would come with a hefty penalty if I went that route. Not worth it. That’s when my lunch companion shoved a $20 bill into my hand, just in case. Put it on my tab.Shopping at Walgreens is all winwalgreens-balance-rewards-apple-pay.jpgWalgreens terminals accept payments when you hover the phone near the top. Not all US stores have this feature turned on, even if the terminal is capable. Scott Stein/CNET I’ve used mobile payments at the Walgreens store multiple times, but as I stood in line with my arms full of tissue paper, cards and gift bags, a part of me wondered what would happen if the terminal was offline today. This has actually happened to me before, but I’ve always had the contents of my purse to back me up when a card reader was down or the point-of-sale terminal was simply too old to work with the phone. That’s something I was worried about even though I’ve witnessed Samsung Pay working with readers when Google Pay and Apple Pay wouldn’t.  Mobile payments did work this time, smooth as butter. Now all I had to worry about was how to get home.The commute back, big failThe time was coming to reunite with my purse, but the train still stood in my way. This wasn’t the first time I wished my Clipper transit card worked on my phone, as transit cards do in so many places. And it wasn’t the first time I wondered why you can’t tap the transit card reader to charge the payment card stored on your phone, as you can on the London Underground.Still, I wanted to see if I’d overlooked a way to buy my ticket through NFC, the near field communications system that makes contactless mobile payments work. When I got to the BART station, I checked the contactless pad that lets you tap your Clipper card to add more value, but tapping a phone against it does nothing. Because it’s clear that trying to do that is as futile as trying to buy a bagel with a key card: You’ve got to fully insert your credit card into the hungry mouth of the ticket machine to pay for your fare. What hurts most is that this system is so close to contactless. Grateful for the $20 stuffed into my jeans pocket, I inserted the cash, praying the machine wouldn’t immediately spit it out. These are old rigs, prone to monetary indigestion. I didn’t even realize I was holding my breath until the machine coughed up dollars worth of change in quarters. If I hadn’t been able to buy my ticket with the machine, I’d have had to find another way home, probably at great expense.bart-no-mobile-payment-credit-cardNoooooope. Jessica Dolcourt/CNET Saved? Mobile payments over NFC aren’t a slam dunk yetMy purse and I are reunited now, and after a severe self-scolding, I can think about the state of mobile payments around me: Apps on my phone can shuttle me around by car and keep me fed. Once I add my ATM card to Samsung Pay, I’ll also be able to get to my cash. So long as the phone’s battery is charged and I’m connected to a data or Wi-Fi network, I know I’ll never be truly stuck. (You can use mobile payments offline as long as you have active “tokens,” which contain your encrypted identity verification, but you need a connection to update these periodically. I once got stuck in South Korea for running out of tokens on a phone in airplane mode.) And even in the event of a large purchase, mobile payments already verify your identity, so you don’t need to fish out your ID.But there were problems during my few purse-less hours that could have led to a sadder ending. If my phone had run out of battery or hit a dead data or Wi-Fi zone, I’d have found myself in a tight spot. And with no way to verify my identity on my phone, I wouldn’t be able to get into a bar or buy a bottle of wine for dinner if I chose to leave my wallet at home.The fact that I couldn’t buy a train ticket or a sit-down meal without cash or card, the fact that I worried whether the NFC terminal was on the fritz, all speak to a larger insecurity. My day wasn’t unlike many of the city’s commuters’, but the infrastructure isn’t robust enough for us to rely on mobile payments alone. Maybe tomorrow I’ll wind my purse around the front door knob so I can’t forget it. Because I’m not ready to venture forth without my wallet again. And neither is San Francisco.Originally published Feb. 12 at 5 a.m. PT.Update, 8:11 a.m. PT: Added more detail on payment tokens.Update, Feb. 15 at 3:00am PT.last_img read more

Raising chickens on the Ruta de Alegría

first_imgRelated posts:What keeps Johnny Araya awake at night? Costa Rica elections demonstrate country’s democratic stability Ex-President Abel Pacheco to back opposition candidate Solís A victory for the ages The slow but steady drumbeat for Luis Guillermo Solís to announce his Cabinet is quickening as we near the April 6 presidential runoff election. With Johnny Araya’searly retirement from the campaign and Solís continuing his “Ruta de Alegría,” a campaign caravan that has wandered the Costa Rican countryside and city streets alike, the press has had little new to cover in this historic presidential campaign. This week, several newspapers and editorials renewed their call for Solís to start revealing his Cabinet choices. But it seems unwise and therefore unlikely that he will do so.Here is why:Whether the press has noticed or not, a campaign is still going on. Despite Araya’s sabbatical, the constitution is clear that on April 6, if he wins not more votes than Solís, but simply the same number, he will become Costa Rica’s next president. (The constitution dictates that in case of a tie, the older candidate wins the presidential election, and Araya is older than Solís by almost a year.)Araya himself has declared that if he wins, he will assume the presidency. Although polling data continue to predict a Solís victory, polls in Costa Rica have proven unreliable in the past, and with ballots gone missing and a National Liberation Party machine gearing up to get out the vote for pride of party – if not for love of candidate – Solís has chosen to take nothing for granted.Recommended: National Liberation Party faces vote-buying allegation, investigationImagine what the fourth estate would say if Solís had simply assumed the race was over and he began behaving as if he were the next president. The same political pundits who now call for him to announce his Cabinet choices would decry the hubris of such a move. Now imagine further the press reaction if Solís suspended his campaign, and on April 6, by hook or by crook, Araya were to win. Those “nattering neigh bobs of negativism” would waste little time converting what has been a serious campaign risen above the childish name-calling and accusations of the other candidates into the butt of jokes regarding an historic political loss and the surprise comeback of Johnny Araya. Solís’ decision to wait not only is wise, but also it is politically astute.Solís’ announcement of Cabinet positions not only would be procedurally premature, but could only hurt him with the public. When he began this campaign, many voters argued they did not know the Citizen Action Party candidate. Prior to the February election, a sobering number of political debates were held in order to get to know Solís and other candidates. In the final one, he looked into the camera and said, “I am Luis Guillermo Solís, and now you know me, and I would appreciate if next Sunday you would make me president.”A sufficient number of voters believed they knew him well enough, and he was propelled to the second round. Now many more are meeting him in person and finding they like what they see. Any announcements of Cabinet positions at this point would invite criticism from some quarter and would distract attention away from the campaign’s “Ruta de Alegría,” and from Solís’ joyful role as “the likely next president coming soon to a town near you.” Shaking hands, kissing babies, playing the güiro, and posing for voters’ photos is exactly the kind of attention Solís wants in the final days of a campaign. Costa Rican presidential candidate Luis Guillermo Solís, a historian by training and candidate for the Citizen Acton Party, arrives at a polling station in San José, on Feb. 2, 2014. Rodrigo Arangua/AFPRecommended: Johnny Araya is down and out, but not his party, says analystAnother reason it is unlikely Solís will begin to announce his political appointments is that he really is avidly campaigning for votes. Araya’s refusal to participate in an election where he might actually be beaten has many voters feeling they need not bother to vote; “Solís will win anyway,” they think. The voter apathy and political absenteeism Araya’s decision has sown in the Costa Rican electorate has created a situation where Solís could be elected president by receiving the lowest percentage of eligible votes in the history of Costa Rican elections. The constitutionally provided runoff election was designed to prevent this outcome and give incoming presidents an electoral mandate. Conspiracy theorists among us might speculate this was the PLN’s intention all along when they stuffed Araya full of mothballs and locked him the closet. A president Solís without a public mandate is weakened from the start. Solís is deftly and confidently seeking 1 million votes, and as the crowds who attend his campaign rallies swell, as the number who “shake the hand of the future president” grows, and as the “selfies” taken with Don Luis Guillermo explode on Facebook and Twitter, candidate Solís becomes ever closer to his goal and his mandate for change.Many in the press have confused Solís’ refusal to announce his Cabinet positions as inactivity, but this is simply more disingenuousness from the chattering class. Anyone who has been around political campaigns knows that a candidate at this stage in an election has long ago begun to consider who should be part of his government. That Solís is not sharing this information until after the election and has managed to keep it from leaking to the press demonstrates an adroitly run campaign as well as a respect for the democratic process. It also demonstrates that Solís understands only too well that regardless of press recriminations and semi-veiled threats, in politics “you don’t count your chickens before they are hatched.”Gary L. Lehring is a professor of government at Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts. He is on sabbatical in Costa Rica. Read more of his columns by clicking on the hashtag #Elections 2014. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Cuba to eliminate currency pegged to dollar

first_img Sponsored Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Quick workouts for men Four benefits of having a wireless security system Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The dual system has created special privileges for Cubans who work in tourism, and resentment among those who don’t.The government of President Raul Castro pledged in October to gradually unify the two currencies in order to prevent shocks like spikes in inflation. Many Cuban economists said the process would take years.On Friday, Vice President Marino Murillo told parliament that the peso pegged to the dollar, known as the CUC, would eventually disappear, the first time the government has explicitly said that. He promised that savings in the convertible pesos would retain their value until the change took place.“People who have the convertible Cuban peso (CUC), whether in the banks or kept at home, will not lose any financial capacity when the dual monetary system is eliminated,” said Murillo.He did not say when the change would go into effect.The double monetary system was established in 1994 amid an economic crisis sparked by the fall of the Soviet Union, which heavily subsidized Cuba for decades.It was designed to allow Cuba to receive hard currency needed for international trade from the outside world while insulating the rest of the communist economy from market influences. In October, the official newspaper Granma said that the government’s first step would be to allow several businesses that currently accept only convertible pesos, or CUCs, to do business in ordinary Cuban pesos, or CUPs.The official exchange rate will remain in effect, Granma said, meaning the goods themselves will remain out of reach for Cubans without access to the foreigner exchange-driven economy, which includes millions of dollars a year in remittances from relatives in the United States and other countries.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 treatments for adult scoliosis Comments   Share   Top Stories HAVANA (AP) – Cuba will eliminate a currency pegged to the dollar as part of a move to end its unique double-currency system, which had become a symbol of economic inequality to many islanders, Cuba’s top economic official said Friday.Tourists currently use a convertible peso roughly equal to a U.S. dollar while most Cubans are paid in ordinary pesos worth about four cents. Many goods are easier to find in government stores that exclusively accept convertible pesos, a mechanism designed to keep the flow of the special currency under government control.last_img read more

Israels Netanyahu struggles to govern with narrow majority

first_imgAnother Likud lawmaker, Yaron Mazuz, called for revoking the citizenship of Arab lawmakers during a parliamentary debate. “We are doing you a favor by letting you sit here,” he pointedly told the Arab lawmakers.Netanyahu distanced himself from the comments but could do little more. Without Mazuz or Hazan, he would lose his parliamentary majority.The incident sparked Arab lawmaker Ahmad Tibi to mock Netanyahu by saying that this is what he gets when Likud voters head to the polls “in droves.”____Follow Aron Heller on Twitter at www.twitter.com/aronhellerapCopyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Netanyahu has already met with opposition leader Isaac Herzog following the nuclear deal, raising speculation that a unity government could be in the works. But Herzog threw cold water on that idea this week, rejecting a partnership with Netanyahu, despite their shared opposition to the Iran deal.Regardless, Netanyahu says he is confident he can govern effectively — and his associates point to precedents in which previous narrow Israeli majority governments managed to thrive.Political analyst Nehama Dueck said there is “strength in the weakness” of Netanyahu’s narrow coalition and that once he passes the state budget this summer, he should be able to breathe easy the next two years.“They are all dependent on each other and know that if they don’t stick together, they are finished,” she said. “It’s a zero-sum game and everyone in the coalition has an interest to stay there so they won’t tug the rope too hard.”Even so, no one is expecting major changes during Netanyahu’s new term in office.The ultra-Orthodox religious parties have already scrapped a bill on Jewish conversions the previous government had promoted to help include more liberal streams of Judaism. They are also scaling back a law that would force their young men to serve in the military, which is compulsory for other Jews. Hawkish partners have no interest in promoting a peace process with the Palestinians, though Netanyahu — much to their chagrin — has also quietly put the brakes on further settlement expansion, at least in the short term, to stave off international criticism. International pressure on Israel to restart peace efforts is expected to increase this fall, setting the stage at home for a delicate balancing act by Netanyahu.The biggest move his new government has pushed for has been a deal to split revenues with gas developers that would inject billions of dollars into the economy. The opposition fiercely rejected the deal, saying it would create a gas monopoly controlled by business interests.Because three of Netanyahu’s ministers have stated conflicts of interests in the matter due of their close ties to the gas companies, he was forced to shelve the vote.In another setback, Israel’s attorney general ordered a criminal investigation Monday into excessive spending at the prime minister’s residences.Netanyahu has also had to deal with scandals involving Likud backbenchers.The biggest mess has involved Oren Hazan, the lowest ranking Likud lawmaker, who faced allegations in a TV investigative piece that he pimped prostitutes and provided crystal meth to Israeli tourists while running a Bulgarian casino before he entered politics. Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology But his victory came with a price. The votes Netanyahu earned in the final hours were largely sapped from his traditional nationalistic allies, leaving him with fewer coalition options.Former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s ultranationalist party then abruptly chose to join the opposition, leaving Netanyahu’s government with the smallest of majorities, just 61 out of parliament’s 120 members.To ensure the votes of his shaky majority, Netanyahu barred coalition members from traveling abroad without his approval. In the closest call yet, a Cabinet minister had to filibuster aimlessly in parliament while the coalition whip scrambled to gather supporters for a vote that could have technically toppled the government. Eventually, Netanyahu’s closest ally, Cabinet minister Yuval Steinitz, was awoken from his sick bed and rushed in wearing slippers at 1:30 a.m. to save the day.Ironically, Netanyahu’s defeat over the Iran nuclear deal could work in his favor. He has stated hopes of expanding his coalition and has been urging opposition politicians to join him in a show of unity as the country confronts the Iranian threat. Netanyahu has argued that the deal, by easing sanctions, will allow the Iranians to funnel newfound cash to hostile militant groups and continue to develop its nuclear infrastructure in the coming years. FILE – In this Tuesday, July 14, 2015 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a news conference at his Jerusalem office. On course to become the longest serving prime minister in Israeli history, Netanyahu’s legacy has not been marked so far by bold measures of war and peace that defined his predecessors. But the hallmark mission of his professional career, keeping Iran from attaining a nuclear weapon, is seen as having taken a big hit with last week’s U.S.-led nuclear deal. (AP Photo/Oren Ben Hakoon, File) Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Unruly backbenchers in Netanyahu’s own Likud party have embarrassed him with their antics, and now he is facing growing criticism at home for failing to stop the international community’s nuclear deal with Iran.Insiders say Netanyahu is in no danger of being toppled anytime soon, despite calls by opposition politicians that he step down over the Iran issue. However, it remains to be seen whether he will actually be able to get anything done in his fourth term in office.“He can survive. The question is what quality of life he will have,” said Amit Segal, a political commentator for Channel 2 TV. “It’s hard to see him pushing forward with anything big.”Some would say that is just how Netanyahu likes it. On course to become the longest serving prime minister in Israeli history, his legacy thus far is one of longevity rather than bold measures of war and peace that defined his predecessors. His lobbying against the Iran nuclear deal — which he insists will not keep Tehran from attaining an atomic weapon — took a big hit with last week’s U.S.-led agreement. The Iran issue has been a hallmark of his political career.The fact that Netanyahu is still standing is an impressive feat itself given his situation in the days leading up to the March 17 election. Trailing in opinion polls and facing a potential uprising within the Likud, Netanyahu rebounded and surged to victory, in part through fiery election-day rhetoric that shunned Palestinian statehood and railed against Israel’s own Arab minority. By warning that Arabs were heading to the polls “in droves,” Netanyahu scared passive right-wing voters into voting. JERUSALEM (AP) — When Benjamin Netanyahu called early elections last year, he said his unwieldy coalition was untenable and that Israel needed a more stable government to carry out vital reforms.But two months into his new term in office, Netanyahu finds himself depending on an even narrower majority, susceptible to the extortion of practically any lawmaker.His political footing is so tenuous that he had to keep his defense minister from attending an international security conference in June because he couldn’t spare the minister’s vote. Another time, an ailing Cabinet minister was forced out of bed to save the government from the humiliation of losing a crucial late-night budget vote. The difference between men and women when it comes to pain Four benefits of having a wireless security system 0 Comments   Share   Sponsored Stories last_img read more

February 23 2015You can view reports on all of th

first_imgFebruary 23, 2015You can view reports on all of the different steps in the upgrade work in the East Crescent Keystone area, starting with the plans in our report from August 15; the beginning of the work is reported on 8/20/2014. Continuing reports were posted on 9/1, 9/3, and on 9/10, 9/12, 9/15, 9/22 9/26, 10/1 – 10/6, 10/22, 10/24, 12/3, 12/12 and 1/5 – 1/21 and 1/26/2015.[photos and text by Sue Kirsch]The last pour was of the center piece slab of the walkway around the amphitheater. This slab has now cured for a month.Ron Chandler is removing the form.Part of the slab floats over the upper seating area and needed heavy support forms which Ron is now removing.Here we can see the rounded slab protruding.The new slab gently curves out and we can see small weldplates at its edge where the railing will be reinstalled.More to come.last_img read more