Nov. 30 — A second terrorist attack in the same week occurred in the United States on Nov. 27, just four days after masked racist terrorists shot at Black Lives Matter protesters in Minneapolis, wounding five African-American men. The victims were just outside the Fourth Precinct, where a continuous protest has been taking place since the killing of Jamar Clark, 24, by Minneapolis cops on Nov. 15. Jennifer MarkovskyRight-wing terrorists this time aimed their guns at a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado Springs, Colo. The alleged “lone” gunman, armed with an AK-47, killed three people and wounded nine others in an over-five-hour standoff with police. The dead are Jennifer Markovsky, 36, a Hawaiian mother of two, who was accompanying a friend to the clinic; Ke’Arre Stewart, 29, an African-American father of two and an army veteran; and Garrett Swasey, 44, a white police officer at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and also a father of two.Ke’Arre StewartAlthough one cop was among the dead and five were among the injured, the 57-year-old shooter, who eyewitnesses say carried out the deadly attack, surrendered to police and was taken into custody without incident. How could this be when the gunman carried out a deadly rampage, but unarmed Black youth are regularly gunned down by cops?Was he a terrorist from another country, like we’ve been warned about so often? Was he one of the migrants that the U.S. and other racist imperialist countries are turning away and warning us to be suspicious of? Certainly a “takedown” like that would be broadcast far and wide with vitriolic, racist commentary. Most likely, the alleged perpetrator would have been shot and killed.The terrorist in Colorado Springs was a white male, Robert Lewis Dear. Whether or not he acted alone is not the primary question. Dear, like others who espouse white supremacy and male supremacy, was given a green light to carry out his terror attack by the highest echelons of Wall Street and its political puppets. The unrelenting, unscientific, anti-woman campaign to defund and shut down Planned Parenthood, an unabashed abortion and health care provider to millions of low-income women and men, is what gave Dear the impetus to carry out this deadly rampage. (See “Stop the war on poor women,” Sept. 17, by Sue Davis and “Defend Planned Parenthood from right-wing attacks,” Oct. 9, by Kathy Durkin at workers.org.) Vicki Cowart, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said in a statement that “eyewitnesses confirm that the man … was motivated by opposition to safe and legal abortion.”This right-wing ideological campaign is based on racism and sexism, two giant pillars of capitalism, and has given obvious encouragement to racist and fascist elements across the U.S. to plan and carry out domestic terrorist attacks. The capitalist-owned media, like the paid hypocrites and liars they are, save the words “terrorist” and “terrorism” for the oppressed, instead of the white men who carry out these atrocities. ‘Weapons of war,’ the new ‘normal’The ruling class, desperate to destroy growing unity among the working class under the leadership of the most oppressed, has even allowed the racist likes of multibillionaire Donald Trump to become a so-called “serious” contender for the Republican presidential nomination. Not because they think this bellicose racist can win, but because whipping up racism, sexism, ableism, anti-immigrant, anti-migrant, anti-lesbian-gay-bisexual-trans*-queer and every other kind of bigotry is exactly what the capitalist class needs at this moment in history. (Trans* is used with an asterisk to indicate the spectrum of all the different genders of people who do not conform to the either/or of male/female.)President Barack Obama issued a statement Nov. 28 on the Planned Parenthood attack, which stated in part: “This is not normal. We can’t let it become normal. If we truly care about this — if we’re going to offer up our thoughts and prayers again, for [who] knows how many times, with a truly clean conscience — then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets to people who have no business wielding them.”Colorado Springs is a reactionary military town, home of the U.S. Air Force Academy and command center for North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD), the Pentagon’s missile operations center. Besides Fort Carson, Peterson and Shriever Air Force bases and high-level operations centers are located there. The Pentagon trains some of its deadliest killers in Colorado Springs. The town is also the U.S. epicenter for reactionary evangelical Christians, who totally oppose abortion rights, many types of birth control and general rights for women. So many national evangelical groups are headquartered there that Colorado Springs has earned the nickname America’s Evangelical Vatican.It should be no surprise that “weapons of war” — firearms and other deadly devices — are “normal” in U.S. “civilian” capitalist society. First and foremost they are utilized by the capitalist state — the military, the police and the military-industrial-prison complex. An anti-gun campaign is not the answer to right-wing attacks. Especially now, the oppressed have the right to arm themselves, the right to self-defense, just like abortion providers who don bullet-proof vests, carry guns and take whatever measures they deem necessary to protect their patients, staff and themselves.The terrorism aimed at Black Lives Matter and Planned Parenthood is meant to strike fear into the heart of activists and to diminish the fighting spirit of those on the front lines against police killings and terror and against attacks on women’s right to reproductive justice. It is meant to tell activists fighting for a union and $15 minimum wage that they could be next. But so far, this strategy has failed. Led by youth and women of color, the Black Lives Matter and other movements show no signs of backing down. It is the police, the military and their racist supporters who must put down their weapons against the oppressed here and worldwide.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
PME’s policy funding level had already dropped to 101.6% at November-end, when its €72bn sister scheme PMT reported a coverage of 102.5%.Both metal schemes have been underfunded since 2015. In order to avoid benefit cuts, their policy funding levels must improve to at least 104.3% by the end of 2019 when their five-year recovery plans expire.Meanwhile, at the end of November, the policy funding level of the €206bn healthcare scheme PFZW stood at 101.6%. The coverage ratio of the €406bn civil service pension fund ABP dropped to 104.4% at the same point.Funding of both schemes must be at least 104.3% at the end of 2020 in order to avoid having to cut accrued benefits and payments to pensioners.In November, the policy funding level of BpfBouw, the €58bn pension fund for the construction industry, stood at the relatively safe level of 118.7%.Market and interest rate developmentsMercer said that developed market equities lost 8.2% in December, for Dutch investors operating a 50% hedge of the main currencies. Investments without a currency hedge lost 8.4%. Emerging market equities incurred a 3.5% loss.According to Aon Hewitt, equity markets fell 5% over the course of last year.Equity index performance, Q3 2018Chart MakerIn addition, interest rates continued to slide. Following a drop of 4bps in November, the 30-year euro swap rate – the main criterion for discounting liabilities – fell by 9bps to 1.37% in December, according to Mercer.The consultancy attributed the development to lower inflation expectations, as well as a flight to AAA-rated government bonds.Aon Hewitt estimated that the interest rate fall in November had increased Dutch pension funds’ aggregate liabilities by 1.7%.Mercer reported that only bonds posted gains in December, with euro-denominated government bonds and credit generating 0.9% and 0.3%, respectively.Listed property and commodities lost 6.3% and 7.8%, respectively, it said.According to Aon Hewitt, pension funds’ investment portfolios lost 2.3% on average in December.Mortality data offers small reprieveThe consultancies said the only substantial windfall for Dutch pension funds last year was the switch to new mortality tables, which meant a funding improvement of approximately 1 percentage point on average.Based on Mercer’s funding figures, the financial position of Dutch schemes was little changed over the course of last year: at 2017-end, the average policy funding stood at 107% on average. Relative to the introduction of the new financial assessment framework (nFTK) in 2015, when policy funding was 110% on average, pension funds’ financial health has actually deteriorated.Frank Driessen, Aon’s head of pensions, highlighted that the pensions sector did not have additional time for adjustments necessary to implement a new pension agreement. However, he also said that past experience had shown that politics would not allow new cuts to pension payments.“Under specific conditions, sudden adjustments have turned out to be possible,” he said, adding that “even the tiniest cuts would have an enormous impact on the image of pensions”.UK schemes hit by asset price volatilityMeanwhile, in the UK, JLT Employee Benefits has estimated that December’s volatile market conditions caused the combined shortfall of UK defined benefit pension schemes to increase by £59bn (€65.1bn), more than doubling the aggregate deficit in the space of a month.Across all private sector DB funds the aggregate funding level fell to 93%, from 97% at the end of November and 99% at the end of July – the highest level recorded by JLT during 2018.Over the course of last year, the overall funding level of UK schemes improved slightly from 92% to 93%, as the aggregate deficit improved from a shortfall of £150bn at the end of 2017 to £107bn as of 31 December 2018, JLT said. A number of Dutch pension funds – including four of the largest – have fallen further into the danger zone as a result of falling equity markets and declining interest rates in December, with potential benefit cuts looming on the horizon.Following market declines in early October and December, discounts to pension payments and accrued benefits have become a more real prospect. Consultancy Mercer said that schemes’ coverage ratio had fallen 4 percentage points to 104% on average in December.Mercer added that the “policy funding” level – the 12-month average of the coverage ratio, and the main criterion for cuts and indexation decisions under the Netherlands’ financial assessment framework – had fallen by 1 percentage point to stand at 108% at December-end.During a presentation of its third-quarter figures, the €47bn metal scheme PME indicated that it was already worried about the potential for further recovery of its funding position, which required rising interest rates, according to Eric Uijen, chairman of the executive board.
Special General Meeting to finalize new CEO todayOur Sports ReporterGUWAHATI: The Special General Meeting of the Assam Cricket Association would be held tomorrow at the ACA stadium, Barsapara. Several important decisions would be taken in the meeting. Disclosing the news to the media the secretary of the Assam Cricket Associations Devajit Saikia in a press conference said, “A Special General meeting has conveyed tomorrow. Several issues would be discussed in the meeting and a few important decisions would also be taken.”Sharing some crucial agendas of the meeting Saikia said, “The process are on to appoint a CEO and a manager (finance) to run day today activities of the Assam Cricket Association. After going through scrutiny the candidates for the posts have been shortlisted and their names would be placed in the meeting for the final approval. The meeting would also likely to constitute the new cricket committee.”It may be mentioned here that Assam Cricket Association has earlier given advertisement for three posts-CEO, Manager (Finance) and Manager (administration). Initially appointment would be made for the first two posts.Saikia today also announced that Assam Cricket Association would provide financial assistance to its former secretary Abdul Matin and former umpire Nazam Rasul (Babuji). Matin, who is going through acute financial problems, will receive Rs 15,000 per month while Rs 50,000 would be handed over to Rasul who is currently undergoing treatment in a city nursing home.Meanwhile there is little relief to Assam Cricket Association as the BCCI has started to release the monthly expenditure from March. Saikia today admitted that they association has started to receive monthly expenditure which included staff payment and others.The media briefing was also attended by the several office bearers which included Romen Dutta (president), Parikshit Dutta (vice president), Tridip Konwar (Treasurer) and Kamakhya Saikia (Joint Secetary).Also read: Local Sports
The British coach of Bafana Bafana is the only one that ever handled the team to beat Nigeria. He did it in 2004 in his first tenure as the South African national coach.He did it again last year in Uyo. In both instances, South Africa scored two goals. Baxter believes he can do it again.According to Sowetan, a South African publication, Baxter holds no fear over facing Nigeria as the countdown to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations showdown at FNB Stadium on Saturday continues.Speaking at the Nelson Mandela Challenge Press Conference in Monte Casino, Johannesburg, he remarked that he expects the Super Eagles to have vengeance on their minds after unexpectedly going down 2-0 to Bafana at home in Uyo in his maiden match in his second stint at the helm as coach in June last year.‘‘We do have Nigeria first‚ in the small matter of an African Nations Cup qualifier‚” the Briton said ‘‘everybody knows the list of injuries that we have had.‘‘Everybody knows what I said in the first press conference (a week ago) that despite that (the injuries) I want to speak about the players that we do have because even though we respect Nigeria we do not fear them.‘‘I think we have still enough talent‚ enough desire and if we can structure a game plan in the next three days‚ I think by the time we run out onto the FNB Stadium we would be confident‚ we would not be complacent‚ because Nigeria have just come from a (2018) World Cup (in Russia).‘‘They are undefeated since we beat them the last time (in the first qualifier in June last year) and they will certainly want to wreak their revenge.‘‘So‚ we will be ready and I still believe that we have a very good chance of getting the result that we need.”Baxter revealed that Bafana had injury scares to Holland-based midfielder Thulani Serero and SuperSport United goalkeeper Ronwen Williams.‘‘The ultrasound did not find any tears but it will take him (Williams) I think 24 to 48 hours for it (slight knee strain) to settle‚” he said.‘‘So he won’t be training with us for the 48 hours and we hope it (the injury) will settle. So that is a little bit of a scare but we will not call in a third keeper and we will keep Ronwen because I think he will be okay.‘‘The second one is Thulani Serero. We did not receive anything from the club about Thulani but through media reports in Holland.‘‘They said he had an ankle injury. We knew he was on the plane but we did not know anything about the injury.‘‘So we held or breaths a little bit.“When he got off (the plane) he said had a laceration‚ five stitches and a gash. The stitches should come off (on Monday) ‚ easy training (on Monday) and he should be okay for full training ahead of the match.Bafana have a tough schedule in the coming days as after hosting the Super Eagles in Johannesburg on Saturday‚ they will then travel to Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium to welcome Paraguay in the Nelson Mandela Challenge on Tuesday.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Femi Solaja with agency reportAhead of the Group E table topper clash this weekend in Johannesburg, South Africa Coach, Stuart Baxter, is already looking beyond the match as he hopes for another win against Nigeria to regain the top spot in the AFCON qualifying series.The rainbow nation is hoping to secure a double against Nigeria for the first time despite the fact that both teams are plagued by injuries.
SAN ANTONIO (AP):San Antonio built a giant 46-point lead, thanks to their smothering defence, before easing up to beat Utah 118-81 on Monday night and extend their stellar start to the NBA season.The Spurs improved to 21-5 – the second-best start in franchise history – and retained their 6-1/2 game lead in the Southwest Division.Kawhi Leonard had 22 points, while LaMarcus Aldridge and Tony Parker added 18 points each for the Spurs, who are 13-0 at home.In other key games, Atlantic Division leaders Toronto had their four-game winning streak ended by Indiana, the Los Angeles Clippers defeated Detroit with a three-pointer with 12 seconds remaining in overtime, and Miami took a share of the Southeast Division lead with a win over slumping Atlanta.Indiana’s Jordan Hill had season highs with 20 points and 13 rebounds as the Pacers beat Toronto 106-90. Monta Ellis had 18 points for Indiana, which went on a 39-4 run in the first half to overturn a 21-point deficit.The Clippers edged Detroit 105-103 when Jamal Crawford hit a three-pointer with 12.4 seconds left in overtime. Blake Griffin, who finished with 34 points, made a pair of free throws with 38.8 seconds remaining to put the Clippers ahead 102-101, but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope tied it for the Pistons by going 1 for 2 from the foul line with 30.5 seconds left.Reggie Jackson finished with 34 points and 11 rebounds for Detroit.Miami led comfortably throughout in winning 100-88 at Atlanta. Chris Bosh scored 24 points and Gerald Green had 20 for the Heat, who moved 1-1/2 games above their Southeast rival.GAME-WINNING POINTSDallas’ Chandler Parsons scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half to guide the Mavericks to a 104-94 win against Phoenix. Parsons has been on restricted duty, coming off the bench lately, following off-season knee surgery. He had eight points during a 20-4 run to finish the third quarter, when Dallas made 13 of their last 14 shots to take a 77-58 lead.Memphis shot 56 per cent and sank 10 of 15 three-point attempts in beating Washington 112-95. Denver’s Will Barton scored 23 points, including two game-sealing free throws with 13.5 seconds remaining, to give the Nuggets a 114-108 win against Houston.Orlando claimed their first win in Brooklyn, cruising past the Nets 105-82 behind 54 per cent shooting from the field.Portland extended their run of wins against New Orleans to seven by defeating the Pelicans 105-101, led by 30 points from Damian Lillard.Chicago rallied from a five-point half-time deficit to beat hapless Philadelphia 115-96 and keep the 76ers winless in 15 road games.
A man has pleaded guilty to attacking a doorman at a Letterkenny bar.Letterkenny District Court.Ian Balfour, a father-of-four, appeared at Letterkenny Circuit Court today charged with assault causing harm to Sean Gallagher at the Central Bar on February 23rd, 2013. A previous siting of the court heard how the injuries caused to Mr Gallagher were “extremely serious.”Prosecuting barrister Patricia McLaughlin said she was waiting the outcome of a medical report on the matter.Judge Keenan Johnston adjourned the case until April 1st for a report from the probation service.The accused, 37, currently lives at Bellanaleck, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh and is signing on at a Garda station in Cavan.MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTACK ON LETTERKENNY DOORMAN was last modified: January 28th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:assaultCentral BarIan Blafourletterkenny
Losing 34-3 to the New York Jets on Sunday had nothing to do with a trap.A so-called “trap game” comes when a supposedly superior team begins to think too much of itself and overlooks an overmatched and vastly inferior opponent.That’s not the Raiders, nor is it what happened at MetLife Stadium. This Oakland team was the classic over-achiever in getting to 6-4, with a deliberate, balanced offense and a defense ranked near the bottom in the NFL even with a moderate improvement during a …
10 September 2008The Gauteng government has entered a multi-million rand partnership with the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) and the University of Johannesburg to set up a think-tank to help the province achieve its vision of becoming a leading global city-region.To be established at a cost of R4-million, the Gauteng City-Region Observatory will be run by a research advisory committee consisting of representatives from the two universities, the Gauteng provincial government and local and metropolitan municipalities.“The idea of establishing an observatory is to ensure that leading universities play a full role in developing a prime city-region in the province,” said Professor Peter Alexander, a director at the Centre for Sociological Research at the University of Johannesburg.“The observatory will assist in developing a research-based approach to long-term strategic planning related to economic, social and other areas of development for the province.”Catalyst for cooperationIn keeping with similar successful knowledge-intensive observatory initiatives implemented globally, Gauteng’s observatory – to be based at Wits – is expected to become a catalyst for further co-operation between universities and the government in various fields of scientific endeavour.“The key objective of the observatory is to make use of the intellectual capacity of institutions of higher learning and research institutions towards the achievement of the global city-region objectives, including socio-economic development,” said Professor Rob Moore, deputy vice-chancellor for advancement and partnerships at Wits.Gauteng’s global city-region strategy, which features the province as a major metropolitan conurbation ranked in the world hierarchy of urban settlements, was influenced by the growing centrality of cities in modern economies like London, New York, Paris and Tokyo.It was also a response to development challenges affecting the province, the ongoing divide between the first and second economies and the high levels of poverty in the province.Prioritising resourcesMoore described the establishment of the observatory as “unprecedented” in the province. “The establishment of the city-region perspective will prove the province as an economic power that drives the economic and social development of not only the region but of the continent as well.”As part of its mandate, the observatory will collect data from Gauteng government departments to assess the progress made in implementing global initiatives to enhance socio-economic growth.This data will also enable the province to make intelligent decisions that help to balance investment in new initiatives against maintaining existing infrastructure.“In a resource-scarce context like Gauteng, the observatory will be key to helping the province prioritise in resource allocations,” he said.The observatory, expected to be fully up and running before June 2009, is further expected to help Gauteng lay a firm foundation for the province’s Vision 2014, which aims to halve unemployment and poverty by 2014, among other things.Source: City of Johannesburg
Former India captain Sourav Ganguly doesn’t believe in picking favourites but is sure the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led team has the wherewithal to challenge any country in all three formats of cricket. He feels the next month’s World T20 tournament will be no different.Ex-India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar, too, feels India is a “bloody good side”, but he also pointed out that at least six teams are capable of winning the title as the T20 format provides more scope to lesser teams to excel. “There’ll be surprises,” he predicted.They expressed their opinions on a variety of issues – from the inclusion of spinners Harbhajan Singh and Piyush Chawla to the comeback of left-hander Yuvraj Singh – at a press meet where the T20 World Cup trophy was also displayed here on Tuesday.”India will always have [good] chances in any format. They have got the team to win the title,” Ganguly pointed out. “India have match winners like Dhoni, Kohli, Gambhir and Sehwag, who can clear the boundary at will.”India are clubbed with England and Afghanistan in Group A, and after the league phase two teams will qualify for the quarter-finals, called Super Eights, in the tournament that runs from September 18-October 7.Manjrekar termed India as a “bloody good” team, but predicted that surprises were in store. “Five or six teams are likely to win it,” he said. “In T20 format, weaker teams have a better chance of beating stronger teams. There’s a lot at stake, and we’ve got to be at our best from the start.” He felt that the short duration of the tournament also makes it more competitive.advertisementHarbhajan, 32, makes a comeback to the national team after disastrous tours of the West Indies and England last year. Though his poor form continued at the start of his stint with Sussex in the English county competitions, he has lately shown signs of returning to form.The Punjab slow bowler has direct competition with the preferred offie R Ashwin – who plays for the Chennai Super Kings, led by India captain Dhoni – if not so much from leg-spinner Chawla.Ganguly, who backed Harbhajan wholeheartedly during his captaincy, said that even today he is among the top three off-spinners in India.”You can call it my bias or love for Harbhajan but if you are picking three best spinners in the country, he’s got to be among them. Harbhajan is one bowler who should be playing all three formats of the game.”Ganguly said that the K Srikkanth-headed selection committee should have kept Harbhajan out of the team for a maximum of six months.”I still believe one year was a bit too long time to keep Harbhajan out of the Indian team. The board should have spoken to him and told him that ‘look we are giving you six months’ time to sort out your bowling’,” he felt. “You can’t keep a bowler like him in domestic cricket for too long. If you have played for the country for 12 years, you are bound to have one bad season. But he has got [nearly] 700 international wickets, which is no mean feat.”It, however, remains to be seen if Dhoni picks Harbhajan ahead of Ashwin.Yuvraj is back after recovering from cancer and Ganguly said that an indication of his match fitness could be ascertained in the upcoming T20 Internationals against New Zealand at home. “Personally, I’ll not say that I’m not worried about his health,” he said.