Court refuses to reinstate Trumps travel ban so whats next

first_imgCourt refuses to reinstate Trump’s travel ban, so what’s next? Tuesday, June 13, 2017 Tags: America, Donald Trump << Previous PostNext Post >> WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the latest federal court ruling against his proposed travel ban comes at a “dangerous time,” maintaining that prohibitions on travellers from six Muslim-majority nations will keep the country safe.The president tweeted, “Well, as predicted, the 9th Circuit did it again – Ruled against the TRAVEL BAN at such a dangerous time in the history of our country. S.C.”“S.C.” may refer to the Supreme Court, where Trump has vowed to take his travel ban fight.The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday refused to reinstate Trump’s executive order banning travellers from six mostly Muslim countries. A three-judge panel said the administration failed to show that blocking citizens from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen was needed to protect the U.S. The court also found that the president’s order ran afoul of an immigration law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of nationality.The 4th U.S. Circuit also has called Trump’s national security concerns an after-the-fact justification for a policy that was “steeped in animus and directed at a single religious group.”More news:  Can you guess the top Instagrammed wedding locations in the world?The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court to immediately reinstate its ban on travellers from six mostly Muslim countries, saying the U.S. will be safer if the policy is put in place.WHAT COMES NEXT?Attorney General Jeff Sessions said after Monday’s ruling that the ban was necessary to protect national security, and the president was within his lawful authority to enact it.White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the administration was confident that the travel ban would be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.The administration has asked the Supreme Court to immediately reinstate the ban on travellers.At the Supreme Court, anything is possible if you have five votes – a majority of the court. The justices have a range of options in front of them. They could order an unusual June argument and try to resolve the travel ban lawsuits before they leave town for the summer. They also could essentially do nothing, leaving the two appeals court rulings in place.More news:  Honolulu authorities investigate arsons at 3 Waikiki hotels; no injuries reportedOne reason the court might feel some responsibility to act – and sooner rather than later – is because the administration has asked for expedited review. The court typically also has the last word when a federal court strikes down a law or presidential order.The 9th Circuit’s more narrow focus on immigration law may appeal to conservative justices on the Supreme Court who might be loath to extend their review beyond the text of the executive order to include the president’s campaign statements about a Muslim ban, said David Levine, a professor at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.“They don’t need to psychoanalyze the president,” he said. “They don’t need to go beyond the four corners of the order.” Source: The Associated Press Sharelast_img read more

Enjoy nationallyrecognized events at The Beaches of Fort Myers Sanibel

first_img Travelweek Group Share Tags: Fort Myers, Fort Myers Spotlight 2019, Spotlight Thursday, April 4, 2019 Enjoy nationally-recognized events at The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibelcenter_img In addition to great weather, shell-drenched shores and the warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico, The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel in Southwest Florida is the setting for award-winning, nationally-recognized festival and events that your clients will love!Plan ahead for your avid sailing clients: Hobie 16 World Championship, Nov. 1-16, 2019For the first time in 35 years, the Hobie 16 World Championships is returning to the USA. And it is coming to The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel Nov. 1-16, 2019.Sailors from around the world will compete in three world championship disciplines: Women’s, Youth and Open, and three additional disciplines; Masters Cup, Grand Masters Cup and Great Grand Masters Cup. South Seas Island Resort will host more than 1,000 athletes and 336 teams on 60 new Hobie Cat racing catamaran sailboats for 16 sailing days. Sailors from 30 countries are expected to attend. In past world events, as many as 7,000 people have attended the championships.Plan ahead if your clients love Mango’s: 23rd Annual Mango Mania Tropical Fruit Festival, Pine Island on July 13-14, 2019 Each summer the mango is the star attraction for two days on Pine Island. Go wild for fruit as you sample locally grown delicacies at this annual affair, an unusual celebration of all the tropical fruit grown on the island, which includes lychee, carambola, longan, papaya and “chocolate pudding fruit.” Fruit, exotic fruit trees and fruit-related products are available for purchase.Do your clients love music? Plan ahead: Island Hopper Songwriter Fest The sixth annual Island Hopper Songwriter Fest returns Sept. 20-29, 2019. The popular event brings music back to the beach with new artists and new events. The festival takes place over 10 days and offers a range of star-studded performances. It kicks off on Captiva Island Sept. 20-22; moves to downtown Fort Myers Sept. 23-26; and ends at Fort Myers Beach Sept. 27-29.The festival is presented by The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel, iHeartRadio, Cat Country 107.1 and BMI. It was named one of the top events for summer by the Southeast Tourism Society. Past performers include Midland, Parmalee, Thompson Square and Grammy Award winner Maren Morris. The sixth annual event will continue to give fans the opportunity to meet the talented artists who write songs for country superstars including Tim McGraw, Miranda Lambert, Jason Aldean and Tricia Yearwood.Not to miss event: 33rd Annual Sand Sculpting Championship, Fort Myers Beach, Nov. 22-Dec. 1, 2019The 33rd Annual American Sand Sculpting Championship and Beach Festival is sponsored by the Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce. This fun-filled event will include world-class master sand sculptors, a state championship contest, an amateur contest, sand sculpting demonstrations and lessons and much more. With more than 1,000 tons of sand, master sand sculptors are returning to Fort Myers Beach forming the largest sand sculpting event in the state, plying their craft and showcasing their artistry in what USA Today and CNN Travel have named a “must-see” and one of the 10 best sand sculpting competitions in the world.For more information on these and many more amazing festivals and events taking place, visit www.fortmyers-sanibel.com Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Tamarindo Talk

first_imgNo related posts. Former WBC light heavyweight champion and Tamarindo resident Donny Lalonde has put together an initiative called TKOOO that will help fighters with health concerns after their careers. According to Lalonde, he organized TKOOO after seeing a lot of great retired boxers struggling with life. “When you have been hit in the head all your life, it’s hard to live,” he said.A proponent of natural medicine, which helped him first recover from boxing injuries and then became a way of life, Lalonde’s initiative offers reflexology and cranial sacral therapy as a way to bring more oxygen to the body and promote healing. He also recommends a product called Cellfood for boxers because it oxygenates the blood, providing amino acids, vitamins and minerals.Lalonde is seeking funding for TKOOO from within the boxing industry. For more information, go to www.TKOOO.org.Waves Costa Rica, in conjunction with Tiki-Hut Bar and Restaurant and with the support of Quiksilver, Skullcandy and Marbella Costa Rica Real Estate, is putting on the Surf for Youth Guanacaste Surf Series on May 5. With respect for a Costa Rica secret surfing spot, the location will only be given through the Waves Costa Rica Facebook page. The contest is for Costa Rican pros, by invitation only. But aside from cheering the surfers on, there are other events and activities that will cater to the public.At-risk youth from CEPIA have been invited to take surf lessons, and organizers are requesting donations of surfboards, leashes, decks, shorts and bathing suits, new or used.The Surf for Youth Guanacaste Surf Series will have an art center in which attendees can paint, draw and create sculptures using recycled materials. Works of art will be exhibited after the contest, and judges will pick the best piece for a prize. In addition, recognized photographers will display their latest works.To learn the event’s location, score an invitation to compete in the surf contest or obtain more information, email info@ateneamarketing.com. –Ellen Zoe Goldenellenzoe@aol.com Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Pot shops open in Denver as Colorado projects 578 million sales

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO, California — Toni Fox planned to open the doors of her Denver marijuana shop at 8 a.m. Wednesday to a line of customers including some who camped overnight to be the first in the United States to legally buy pot for recreational use.Fox had arranged for canopy tents, heaters and a food truck to offer donuts and pastries to patrons waiting for the state-appointed hour. She expected sales at her 3D Cannabis Center, operating since 2010 as a medical-marijuana dispensary near the Denver Coliseum, to surge to at least $250,000 a month from $30,000, she said.“We’ll have people out the door,” Fox, 42, a Salida resident, said by telephone. “It’s going to be a very festive atmosphere. We all feel like we’re walking on sunshine right now.”Fox’s shop is among 14 in Denver that got state and local licenses in time to sell marijuana to anyone 21 or older starting Jan. 1, just over a year after Colorado and Washington voters made their states the first to legalize recreational use. Washington’s shops are expected to open later in the year.Colorado projects $578.1 million a year in combined wholesale and retail marijuana sales to yield $67 million in tax revenue, according to the Legislative Council of the Colorado General Assembly. Wholesale transactions taxed at 15 percent will finance school construction, while the retail levy of 10 percent will fund regulation of the industry.“There are a lot of people interested to see what these stores are all about,” said Brian Vicente, co-author of Colorado’s recreational-marijuana ballot measure and an attorney with a Denver-based law firm representing the marijuana industry. “There will be pretty large lines for these facilities.”Licenses for 136 marijuana stores, a majority in Denver, were mailed Dec. 23, the Colorado Revenue Department said in a statement. Recreational marijuana businesses can open only after receiving both a state and local license, said Julie Postlethwait, a spokeswoman for the Marijuana Enforcement Division.Only existing medical-marijuana retailers can apply for the licenses until July 1, she said. In Denver, home to the state’s largest number of such dispensaries, that deadline extends through Jan. 1, 2016.The city’s newly licensed shops feature names such as The Green Solution, The Healing House Denver and The Denver Kush Club, according to a map on the Denver city government’s website.Colorado residents with a photo identification showing they are at least 21 may buy as much as one ounce of pot in a single transaction, while those from out of state can get a quarter ounce, Postlethwait said. Customers can’t consume the product in public, including at the shops.Medium-quality marijuana sells for an average of $196 an ounce in Colorado and $192 an ounce in Washington, according to the Price of Weed website, where pot buyers can post what they paid.“It will be an interesting time in Colorado in the next few months,” Postlethwait said. “We’ll have things shake out and settle. That will give us an opportunity to study what the face of the two segments of the marijuana industry will look like.”Marijuana possession and sale remains illegal under federal law. In August, the U.S. Justice Department said it wouldn’t challenge the legalization laws in Washington and Colorado provided the states prevent out-of-state distribution, access to minors and drugged driving, among other restrictions.In Washington, retailers will begin selling marijuana around June, according to Brian Smith, a spokesman for the State Liquor Control Board, which is overseeing the industry. The agency, which limits retail licenses to 334 statewide, had received 867 applications as of Dec. 24, he said.Washington’s pot producers, processors and retailers each must pay the state a 25 percent sales tax, unless they hold both producer and processor licenses, which allows them to pay the levy once.Washington isn’t including revenue from marijuana growth, processing and sales in its fiscal projections “due to the continued uncertainty over the rules and structure of the market,” according to a November report by the state’s Economic and Revenue Forecast Council.© 2013, Bloomberg News Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

Two classic short stories by Gabriel García Márquez that you should read

first_imgRelated posts:The great and magical Gabo Texas university acquires Gabriel García Márquez’s personal archive Nobel-winning Colombian writer Gabriel García Márquez dead at 87 Nobel writer Gabriel García Márquez hospitalized in Mexico Facebook Comments Take a break this evening. After you’ve gone to Mass, or eaten your matzo, or taken a dip in the ocean or whatever other activity you might be doing today, on this 20th day of the fourth month of the year — take a break. And go read two of Gabriel García Márquez’s most famous short stories.The Nobel laureate from Colombia died Friday at the age of 87 in Mexico City. Tributes are pouring in from everywhere for one of the 20th century’s greatest writers. His homeland will hold a special ceremony for him Tuesday. The Daily Telegraph tried to rate García Márquez’s essential works. While Vox boasts that “One Hundred Year of Solitude” had the greatest opening of any book ever  (“Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.”)But the best way to get a quick-fix of Gabriel García Márquez is by reading a pair of brilliant short stories by the writer.In the U.S., García Márquez books are fixtures of high school classrooms, used by teachers to introduce Latin America and the literary style of magical realism. (A concept the author never claimed to invent, but he popularized the technique and influenced other Latin American classics like Isabelle Allende’s “House of the Spirits” and Laura Esquivel’s “Like Water for Chocolate.” He explained to The Atlantic back in 1973 that “Surrealism comes from the reality of Latin America.”In my high school, we were never assigned “One Hundred Years of Solitude” or “Love in the Time of Cholera” or any of his novels. We just read two short stories (along with the haunting novella “Chronicle of a Death Foretold”). They’ve stuck with me ever since my high school days. Sublime, aching tales that use the surreal to bring out honest emotion. Both those stories are available online. Read them here: A Very Old Man With Enormous WingsThe Handsomest Drowned Man In The Worldlast_img read more

Big Oils heirs join call for action as climate summit opens

first_imgRelated posts:Obama to pledge $3 billion for new UN climate change fund China surpasses EU on per-capita pollution, pushes CO2 to record Hundreds of thousands rally worldwide over climate change After 11 days of talks, a climate agreement For 140 years, the Rockefellers were the oil industry’s first family, scions of a business empire that spawned companies called Exxon, Mobil, Amoco and Chevron. So it was no trivial matter when a group of Rockefeller heirs decided recently to begin severing financial ties to fossil fuels.“There is a moral imperative to preserve a healthy planet,” said Valerie Rockefeller Wayne, a great-great-granddaughter of oil magnate John D. Rockefeller, Sr. and a trustee in the largest charitable foundation in which the family still plays the leading role.On Monday, the foundation, known as the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, will formally announce plans to begin divesting itself of fossil-fuel stocks, citing concerns about climate change. The symbolic cutting of ties to a key part of the family’s heritage is being timed with the start of another symbolism-laden event: a gathering of world leaders to grapple with the environmental consequences of decades of fossil-fuel burning.U.S. President Barack Obama will join heads of state from more than 120 countries Tuesday at an unusual climate summit convened by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The meeting in New York is aimed at persuading governments to do more to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases in the face of new evidence of an accelerating buildup of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.The high-level gathering — the biggest since a troubled round of international climate negotiations in Copenhagen five years ago — is likely to underscore the diplomatic and political difficulties ahead as the governments seek to hammer out a treaty limiting global greenhouse gas emissions by late next year. The Obama administration separately faces tough negotiations with overseas trading partners China and India over proposed cuts in fossil-fuel burning, while also defending its climate policies against attacks from Republican opponents in Washington.But the perception of halting progress on climate politics stands in sharp contrast with an increasingly energetic movement that will be on display on the summit’s periphery. An unlikely coalition of groups — including corporate executives, philanthropists and urban planners — are in New York this week to showcase practical steps being implemented to address the causes of climate change and mitigate its effects.Entrepreneurs and businesses will promote technology breakthroughs that are making wind and solar power competitive with more traditional energy sources in some parts of the country. And investors and foundations with collective holdings in the tens of billions of dollars will formally join a global “divest-invest” movement that seeks to shift capital from fossil-fuel extraction to renewable energy. John D. Rockefeller, Jr., circa 1915. (U.S. Library of Congress/Wikimedia Commons)New participants in the movement, such as the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, say their decision reflects not only concerns about the environment but also a belief that renewables are becoming an increasingly sound investment at a time of growing uncertainty about the future of fossil fuels such as coal.“The action we’re taking is symbolism but it is important symbolism,” said Stephen Heintz, the president of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, which controls nearly $900 million in assets. “We’re making a moral case, but also, increasingly, an economic case.”The summit’s formal events are playing out against a boisterous backdrop that includes thousands of activists and protesters. On Sunday, a crowd estimated by organizers at more than 300,000 marched through central Manhattan in what was believed to be the biggest climate-related demonstration ever held. The massive rally, which was mirrored by smaller protests in other cities around the globe, drew not only environmental activists but also university students, labor groups, A-list Hollywood celebrities such as actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo, and politicians including New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, D.“Our mission is to make this a decisive moment and a turning-point moment, and I felt today that I was seeing history starting to be made,” De Blasio told reporters.But several key names are missing from this week’s summit. China, the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, will be represented by its vice premier, Zhang Gaoli, rather than President Xi Jinping. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi likewise will skip the gathering, although he is expected to discuss climate change during an official visit to the White House this month. Several European governments are being represented by foreign ministers or other senior cabinet officers.The absences of the heads of state of some of the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases has led skeptics of the U.N. climate treaty process to belittle the New York gathering as a meaningless exercise in public relations.“President Obama has pledged to be at the Summit. The leaders of China, India, Australia, Germany, Canada, among others, have better things to do,” Patrick Michaels, a climatologist at the Cato Institute, a libertarian-leaning think tank, wrote in a blog post last week.The Obama administration is seeking to use the summit to showcase its achievements in reducing U.S. carbon emissions while publicly urging other countries to do more. The White House will tout efforts to raise fuel-economy standards for the automotive industry and reduce pollution from coal-burning utilities, as well as more recent, voluntary initiatives to encourage investment in solar energy and phase out production of heat-trapping hydrofluorocarbons widely used in air conditioners.“We are taking the summit seriously, both to show the world that the United States is committed to leading the fight against climate change and to call on other leaders to do the same,” White House counselor John Podesta told reporters last week.While acknowledging formidable challenges in international climate negotiations as well as from a skeptical Congress, administration officials say they plan a more aggressive push in the weeks ahead. Adding urgency, the officials said, are new scientific findings that show record growth in concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, along with new evidence of changes in weather patterns and ocean chemistry. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration last week reported that, despite unusually cool weather in the eastern United States, global average temperatures over the summer were the highest since detailed record-keeping began in the 1880s, putting 2014 on a track for being the hottest year in historical time.“Across the country and around the world, people are grappling with drought and wildfires and severe weather,” Podesta said. “So we don’t have time to dabble in climate denial.” Land and ocean temperature departure from average in August 2014, with respect to a 1981-2010 base period. (NOAA/The Washington Post)The increased emphasis on climate change also reflects shifting political realities. While large majorities in the U.S. Congress — including nearly all Republicans and many leading Democrats — have voiced opposition to binding international treaties on greenhouse-gas emissions, opinion polls have showed growing concern over climate change in a year in which the Northeast continues to repair the damage from 2012’s Hurricane Sandy, while the country’s Western half wilts under epic heat and record droughts.“The administration is beginning to see a large political opportunity as the GOP appears stuck in what I call ‘climate nihilism,’ ” said Paul Bledsoe, a former Clinton White House climate aide now a senior fellow on energy at the German Marshall Fund. “On both political and policy grounds, they see a need to be aggressive and to prompt popular activism and international action.”The shifting politics is partially a reflection of a transformation in the priorities and tactics of environmental groups leading the fight for more aggressive climate policies. Once dominated by legal, legislative and regulatory strategists, the major environmental organizations have poured money into local politics while also attempting to broaden their base, encouraging people at local levels to engage in civil disobedience as well as fund-raising and legal action.The green movement was galvanized by the fight over the proposed Keystone Pipeline, as activists, led by Middlebury College Professor Bill McKibben, seized on the controversy to mobilize college students and encourage divestment to block construction of the proposed conduit that would transfer crude from Canadian oil sands to refineries in the Gulf of Mexico. Other major groups, such as the Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council, have increasingly promoted citizen activism to protest coal-burning projects. On the electoral front, the League of Conservation Voters plans to spend $25 million in this election cycle, five times more than it did in the 2010 midterm elections, with much of the money going to state contests.Key industries also have shown increased sensitivity to climate politics, agreeing in some cases to work with the Obama administration in adopting voluntary curbs on emissions. On Monday, the State Department will trumpet an initiative that commits companies to taking further steps to reduce methane emissions from oil and natural gas operations. In the 10 months since State Department officials first approached energy firms about its Climate and Clean Air Coalition Oil and Gas Methane Partnership, six have agreed to take part, including Southwestern Energy, the fourth-largest U.S. natural gas producer, as well as the British firm BG Group and Norway’s Statoil.“We believe that it’s much better that the companies are proactive,” said Helge Lund, chief executive of Statoil. “In that way, perhaps we’ll be able to impact the direction so we can have as rational and market-based solutions as possible.”The recent decisions by energy firms and elite financial organizations have helped reinforce perceptions of a cultural shift, even though the divest movement has not significantly altered the course of big oil and gas companies that remain convinced that the increasing appetite for energy in rapidly developing nations will outpace any increase in renewable energy. Still, on the eve of the U.N. summit, leaders of the divest-invest initiative prepared to release a long list of new participants in a campaign that now includes 180 institutions and local governments as well as nearly 700 individuals, collectively representing $50 billion in assets. Of the many additions, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund stood out because of historical ties to one of the world’s great oil empires.Wayne, the Rockefeller descendant now on the fund’s board of trustees, said her foundation would first divest its assets from industries involved in coal and tar-sands mining, followed by a more gradual disengagement from other fossil-fuel stocks. Some family members continue to hold stock in Exxon Mobil — a modern descendant of the Standard Oil company co-founded by her great-great-grandfather in the 1870s — and several have used their status as shareholders to launch proxy campaigns to encourage the company to adopt more environmentally friendly policies, Wayne said.“This is part of a natural progression for us,” said Wayne, who marched Sunday with her three children in the pre-summit demonstration in New York.Wayne said she felt certain that her famous ancestor would approve. In their lifetimes, both the Standard Oil founder and his son, the philanthropist John D. Rockefeller Jr., were ardent supporters of conservation causes, purchasing huge swaths of ranch land and donating them to the federal government to create some of the U.S.’ first wilderness preserves for future generations to enjoy.If the elder Rockefeller were alive today, she said, he would be “investing in alternative energy sources and renewables right now.”Steven Mufson covers energy and other financial news.© 2014, The Washington Post Facebook Commentslast_img read more

FIFAGate Just days after his reelection Blatter resigns

first_imgRelated posts:Blatter wins FIFA vote amid corruption storm FIFA’s Blatter shocked by US anti-corruption tactics FIFA arrests transform Blatter heir into face of football scandal The reporter who exposed the FIFA scandal that toppled Sepp Blatter ZURICH, Switzerland – Sepp Blatter on Tuesday resigned as president of FIFA as a mounting corruption scandal engulfed world football’s governing body.The 79-year-old Swiss official, FIFA president for 17 years and only re-elected on Friday, said a special congress would be called as soon as possible to elect a successor.Blatter said that the scandal-tainted FIFA needs “profound reconstruction” and that he had “thoroughly reconsidered” his presidency since his re-election.He added that the vote “does not seem to be supported by everybody in the world of football.”His resignation came less than a week after Swiss police arrested seven FIFA officials, including two vice presidents, at a Zurich hotel.The arrests were carried out on behalf of U.S. prosecutors who accuse the seven, and eight other suspects, of involvement in $150 million of bribes.Following is Blatter’s resignation statement:I have been reflecting deeply about my presidency and about the forty years in which my life has been inextricably bound to FIFA and the great sport of football. I cherish FIFA more than anything and I want to do only what is best for FIFA and for football. I felt compelled to stand for re-election, as I believed that this was the best thing for the organisation. That election is over but FIFA’s challenges are not. FIFA needs a profound overhaul.While I have a mandate from the membership of FIFA, I do not feel that I have a mandate from the entire world of football – the fans, the players, the clubs, the people who live, breathe and love football as much as we all do at FIFA.Therefore, I have decided to lay down my mandate at an extraordinary elective Congress. I will continue to exercise my functions as FIFA President until that election.The next ordinary FIFA Congress will take place on 13 May 2016 in Mexico City. This would create unnecessary delay and I will urge the Executive Committee to organise an Extraordinary Congress for the election of my successor at the earliest opportunity. This will need to be done in line with FIFA’s statutes and we must allow enough time for the best candidates to present themselves and to campaign.Since I shall not be a candidate, and am therefore now free from the constraints that elections inevitably impose, I shall be able to focus on driving far-reaching, fundamental reforms that transcend our previous efforts. For years, we have worked hard to put in place administrative reforms, but it is plain to me that while these must continue, they are not enough.The Executive Committee includes representatives of confederations over whom we have no control, but for whose actions FIFA is held responsible. We need deep-rooted structural change.The size of the Executive Committee must be reduced and its members should be elected through the FIFA Congress. The integrity checks for all Executive Committee members must be organised centrally through FIFA and not through the confederations. We need term limits not only for the president but for all members of the Executive Committee.I have fought for these changes before and, as everyone knows, my efforts have been blocked. This time, I will succeed.I cannot do this alone. I have asked Domenico Scala to oversee the introduction and implementation of these and other measures. Mr. Scala is the Independent Chairman of our Audit and Compliance Committee elected by the FIFA Congress. He is also the Chairman of the ad hoc Electoral Committee and, as such, he will oversee the election of my successor. Mr. Scala enjoys the confidence of a wide range of constituents within and outside of FIFA and has all the knowledge and experience necessary to help tackle these major reforms.It is my deep care for FIFA and its interests, which I hold very dear, that has led me to take this decision. I would like to thank those who have always supported me in a constructive and loyal manner as President of FIFA and who have done so much for the game that we all love. What matters to me more than anything is that when all of this is over, football is the winner.Read our FIFA-Gate coverage here and let us hear from you in the comments section below. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Pope urges better care for the Amazon political dialogue in Ecuador

first_imgRelated posts:Pope: Sinners against environment will answer to God Costa Rica’s Catholic Church to take more activist role on environment following Pope’s call to action Pope Francis calls for climate, migrant action in Congress speech Pope Francis asks ‘forgiveness for the scandals’ QUITO,Ecuador — Pope Francis called for dialogue on Tuesday in front of nearly one million people at an outdoor mass in Ecuador’s capital, before launching an appeal for better care of the Amazon.The pope addressed approximately 900,000 faithful who braved the cold and rain to hear his homily in Bicentennial Park, Quito — a city recently rocked by anti-government protests.The Argentine-born pontiff focused his message on “our revolution,” the need to spread the Roman Catholic faith.“The enormous richness of variety … moves us away from the temptation of offers that are closer to dictatorships, ideologies or sectarianism,” said Francis, the first Latin American pope.“Fight for inclusion at all levels,” he implored, while pleading for “dialogue” on the third day of a South American tour that will also take him to Bolivia and Paraguay.Later, in a meeting with social organizations — including indigenous peoples opposed to oil extraction on their lands — the pope stressed the important role the Amazon plays in the “global ecosystem” and said that its “enormous diversity” requires particular care.“Ecuador – together with other countries with Amazonian land — has a chance to practice the teachings of integral ecology,” he said.The pope, recalling his encyclical last month which appealed for quick action against climate change, called Tuesday for the Earth to be left a better place for future generations.“One thing is clear, we cannot continue turning our back on reality, on our brothers, on Mother Earth,” he said during a meeting with teachers and students in northern Quito.Environmental issues have created a headache for President Rafael Correa’s eight-year-old administration, with ongoing protests by indigenous peoples over land damage that they say is due to mining and oil extraction.The government has been beset by a separate set of protests in recent weeks over Correa’s socialist policies, which have angered business leaders as well as the upper and middle classes, who want him to step down.Correa, an admirer of the pope, had a private meeting with Francis late Monday. The pope later said he would bless the country so that internal differences might be reconciled.Veiled message to Correa?During Tuesday’s mass, the pope invoked South America’s independence movements from Spain 200 years ago.“That cry for liberty … did not lack conviction or force, but history tells us that it was only convincing when personalism, the desire for single leaderships, were put aside,” Francis said.He did not single out any country or government, in a region that has known right-wing dictatorships in the past and controversial left-wing leaders in recent years.But some of the faithful saw the pope’s words as a veiled message to both the opposition and Correa, who attended the mass.“In an indirect way, he told the president to take into account that there are people who don’t have the same ideas as him,” said Felipe Lascano, a 22-year-old university student.Bolivia on WednesdayPope Francis met with Ecuadoran bishops before the mass.The pope already celebrated a huge outdoor mass with 800,000 people at a park in the coastal city of Guayaquil, where he focused on the theme of family as the heart of society.Poverty will also be a major topic during this South American tour by “the pope of the poor.”It is the first visit by a pontiff to Ecuador in three decades. His first visit to Latin America as pope was in Brazil in 2013.His current tour comes at a time when the Vatican is losing followers to protestantism in Latin America, home of many of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.The Ecuador leg of his trip ends Wednesday with a visit to a sanctuary to the Virgin of El Quinche outside Quito before heading to Bolivia.He will then travel to Paraguay on Friday where police said they would prohibit signs alluding to hot-button social issues such as abortion and gay marriage.All three of the countries he is visiting are predominantly Catholic and have been marked by a long history of poverty and inequality mostly afflicting indigenous populations.When Pope John Paul II visited Ecuador in 1985, about 94 percent of the population was Catholic, compared to 80 percent today in the country of 16 million.The decrease has come as evangelical churches have attracted huge numbers of followers, many of whom are indigenous people disenchanted by a lack of attention from the Catholic hierarchy. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Nicaraguas Ortega holds crisis talks with opposition

first_imgNicaraguan President Daniel Ortega opened talks on Wednesday with opposition groups in a bid to quell a month of anti-government unrest that has seen more than 50 people killed.The Church-mediated dialogue, which got underway in the capital Managua, involved representatives of university students who are leading the protests against Ortega as well as some from business groups and unions.Ortega told the room that the aim of the talks was to “get past this tragic moment” and restore “peace” to the country, one of Latin America’s poorest.He was however interrupted by student representatives calling him a “murderer” and urging “an end to the repression.”“We have come to demand you order the immediate halt of the attacks. You’re the boss of the paramilitaries, of the troops, of the mobs backing the government,” said a leader of the student coalition, Lester Aleman.The unrest was the worst faced by Ortega in his past 11 years as president. AFP Photo / Inti OconThe protests were initially triggered by an aborted attempt to reform the near-bankrupt social security system, but quickly morphed into a street movement demanding Ortega’s ouster over a range of grievances.Rights groups say at least 58 people were killed, the majority of them protesters.Ortega said Nicaragua’s police now have orders to not open fire. He also said that “the deaths were on all sides,” not only that of the protesters.Late Wednesday, foreign minister Denis Moncada announced an 11-strong delegation from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights would arrive in Managua on Thursday to observe the situation on the ground. The government had at first rejected such a mission while a parliament-created commission probed the deaths.Challenge to Ortega’s ruleThe 72-year-old leader, who previously ruled between 1979 and 1990, is a former leftist Sandinista guerrilla who helped overthrow the US-backed dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza, but who himself has become seen as dictatorial.He has increasingly wielded power jointly with his wife Rosario Murillo, who is both his vice president and chief government spokesperson.Murillo, who attended the talks alongside her husband, said “we came here in good faith” and urged all present “to think of Nicaragua.”But student representatives in the room made clear that they want the president and Murillo to step down.They also used the occasion to reject Ortega’s portrayal of many of those killed as criminals or vandals.“They were students, not criminals,” they yelled. The talks came one day after the most recent clashes between protesters and police, in the northern town of Matagalpa, which has long been under the sway of Ortega’s Sandinista Front party.The town’s mayor, Sadrach Zeledon, said one person was killed by “right-wing vandalism groups,” referring to the demonstrators, who in turn said the victim, Wilber Reyes, was killed in attacks launched by police.The Nicaraguan Association for Human Rights spokesman in the city, German Herrera, told local TV station 100% Noticias that 35 people were injured in the clashes on Tuesday and at least 10 people had been arrested.The same day in Masaya, 30 kilometers (20 miles) southeast of Managua, residents reported harsh repression by riot police, while in the capital, parents and students from private high schools marched to demand justice and freedom.The US Embassy in Nicaragua has suspended the processing of non-immigrant visas until further notice, citing the instability.ConcessionsOrtega had accepted the notion of talks in the early days of the crackdown, but they were delayed for weeks. The Church deemed he had not fulfilled conditions under which they could be held – among them that a regional human rights group be allowed to visit.Ortega made a series of other previous concessions after sharp domestic and international criticism over the use of security forces to put down the protests, and curbs on independent media to report them.Ortega’s concessions included abandoning the social security reforms, freeing dozens of arrested protesters, lifting broadcast bans on private TV channels, and offering dialogue.Business leaders, as well as the army, appear to have distanced themselves from Ortega as the protests, and the deadly crackdown, continued. VIDEO: Inside Nicaragua’s historic protests Related posts:Dialogue struggles forward, protests continue in Nicaragua PHOTOS: Nicaraguans in Costa Rica gather to support their country during hard times Night of terror leaves 5 dead in Nicaraguan protests Once a symbol of Somoza-era torture, Nicaragua prison holds protesters Facebook Comments Frustrations have been voiced over corruption, the autocratic style of Ortega and Murillo, limited options to change the country’s politics in elections, and the president’s control over Congress, the courts, the military and the electoral authority.One of the bishops, Abelardo Meta, said in Wednesday’s talks that the clerics had a demand of their own – “that the police be pulled back to their barracks.”“A revolution without arms has started. Here, it’s not an army against an army – it’s a population that is unarmed,” he said. Nicaragua’s primal screamlast_img read more

Supreme Court president steps down amid corruption scandal

first_imgHow Costa Rica’s cement market became a hotbed of intrigue Related posts:Four judges reprimanded over Chinese cement scandal Police arrest two key figures in Chinese cement case Cement case detainees await space at San Sebastián prison The real reason the ‘cementazo’ is so scary for Costa Rica – and so important The president of Costa Rica’s Supreme Court (CSJ), Carlos Chinchilla, left his position this Monday after being reprimanded for his role in an influence-peddling scandal involving imported Chinese cement.Chinchilla, 55, informed the CSJ that he’d opt for early retirement four days after the Full Court reprimanded—with no legal consequences—him along with three other judges.The judges were reprimanded for “serious misconduct,” after being investigated for influence peddling. The investigation found that the judges rejected a case against two legislators accused of collaborating with Juan Carlos Bolaños. Bolaños was at the center of a scandal involving imported Chinese cement, dubbed the Cementazo scandal, that rocked Costa Rica in 2017.center_img Bolaños, who’s currently in preventive detention, is accused of using political pressure and offered perks in exchange for the authorization to import Chinese cement with millions of dollars worth of unguaranteed credit from public banks.Bolaños’s criminal network involved agents from all three branches of government. Over the course of the investigation, a CSJ magistrate and the attorney general were dismissed, as well as the manager and board of directors of the state-owned Bank of Costa Rica. The Vice Minister of Finance was also forced to resign.Chinchilla and the other reprimanded judges irregularly exonerated the now-former legislators Otto Guevara and Víctor Morales Zapata, for influence-peddling charges despite having hundreds of taped calls between the legislators and Bolaños proving the charge.The written reprimand was criticized across the country for having little weight, especially since the ex-Attorney General Bernice Smith, was suspended for two months over the same case. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

UKs Cameron Northern Ireland to host G8 summit

first_imgAssociated PressDUBLIN (AP) – Peace in Northern Ireland will be a focal point for next year’s G-8 summit of world leaders, Prime Minister David Cameron declared Tuesday as he unveiled plans to host the annual gathering in the long-troubled British territory.“The world’s leaders are going to be here next year debating the issues that are vital to the future of our world, vital to the future of Northern Ireland, and seeing this brilliant, beautiful part of the United Kingdom,” Cameron announced at the end of a question-and-answer session at a forklift factory in Northern Ireland. Top Stories Comments   Share   (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Cameron is current chairman of the G-8 encompassing the United States, United Kingdom, Russia, Japan, Germany, France, Italy and Canada. Leaders are expected to gather June 17 and 18 at a luxury hotel and golf resort beside Lough Erne in Northern Ireland’s County Fermanagh lakeland.Staging the G-8 in Fermanagh appears certain to present a test for the peace process in Northern Ireland, where several small Irish Republican Army factions continue to mount occasional bomb and gun attacks in opposition to the province’s 5-year-old unity government of British Protestants and Irish Catholics.Fermanagh borders the Republic of Ireland and it remains an area of relatively high activity for the IRA die-hards who oppose the 2005 decision of most IRA members to renounce violence and disarm.Fermanagh’s main town, Enniskillen, is forever linked in the public mind to one of the IRA’s worst civilian slaughters: a 1987 no-warning IRA bomb that tore through a crowd of Protestant civilians commemorating the British dead from the two world wars.Eleven were killed and 63 wounded. But the horror also gave the world one of Northern Ireland’s most inspiring peacemakers, Gordon Wilson, who hours after the attack from his hospital bed described how he had said goodbye to his dying daughter Marie as they lay buried together in the rubble _ and then publicly forgave her IRA killers. Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement 3 international destinations to visit in 2019center_img First Minister Peter Robinson, the Protestant leader of the Northern Ireland government, praised Cameron for “his continued efforts in helping us to promote Northern Ireland on the global stage. This is a massive boost for us.”His Catholic colleague, former IRA commander and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, was more circumspect.McGuinness noted that both parts of Ireland had “suffered terribly as the result of the world recession caused by the irresponsible behavior of financial institutions and some governments.” He said he hoped G-8 leaders “when they come to Fermanagh will recognize and accept the need to do something deep and profound to assist people.”The one thing no police operation can stop is Fermanagh’s legendarily wet weather. There’s a local saying: Half the year, the lakes are in Fermanagh; the other half, Fermanagh’s in the lakes.___Online:Lough Erne Resort, http://www.lougherneresort.com/ Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t likelast_img read more

Indian army officer killed in firing in Kashmir

first_imgThe Pakistani military denied responsibility, saying in a statement that none of its troops had fired across the cease-fire line on Indian positions.The firing took place in Poonch sector, about 180 kilometers (110 miles) southwest of Srinagar, the summer capital of the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir.Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan. Both claim it in entirety and have fought two wars over the region since 1947.The longtime rivals signed a 2003 cease-fire accord that has mostly held. Each side occasionally accuses the other of violating it by firing mortars or gunshots across the “Line of Control” dividing Kashmir between them.India accuses Pakistan of arming and training Kashmiri insurgents who have been fighting since 1989 for Kashmir’s independence or merger with Pakistan, a charge Islamabad denies. More than 68,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in the fighting.Although the rebellion has largely been suppressed by Indian troops in recent years, public resentment against Indian rule remains deep and the resistance is now principally expressed through street protests.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like Men’s health affects baby’s health too Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Comments   Share   center_img Top Stories Sponsored Stories SRINAGAR, India (AP) – India’s army said one of its officers was killed Friday in an unprovoked firing from across the cease-fire line with Pakistan in disputed Kashmir.S.N. Acharya, an army spokesman, said it was not yet known whether the firing was from Pakistani troops or Kashmiri insurgents trying to infiltrate into Indian-held territory.The attackers used small arms and fired grenades that damaged an Indian army bunker and killed the officer, Acharya said. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img read more

Afghan forces struggle as Taliban seeks northern stronghold

first_img Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Comments   Share   As Afghanistan’s U.S.-trained and equipped forces have struggled to fend off the insurgents — who at one point came within 3 kilometers (less than 2 miles) of Kunduz — authorities have increasingly turned to local militias and former warlords, a further indictment of the costly, decade-long U.S. effort to build an effective Afghan military.Provincial Gov. Mohammad Omer Safi said 3,000 troops are now battling a well-armed insurgent force of some 2,000 fighters who crashed against the city’s gates late last month at the start of the spring fighting season. He said logistical problems that left troops without food, fuel or ammunition for days on end have been resolved, but that the Taliban have proven tough to dislodge.“We have surrounded the enemy everywhere and we will not allow them to advance any further,” he told The Associated Press. “Maybe with the passage of time they will be weakened, run out of ammunition and find themselves moved back. This is not a one day or two days, or one month or two months fight.”Safi said that in addition to switching from hit-and-run attacks to seizing and holding territory, the Taliban have also been joined by other militants, including from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. The IMU has longstanding ties to the Taliban and al-Qaida, and is believed to have pledged allegiance to the IS group last year. Safi said the insurgents are determined to carve out a new safe haven after being driven out of Pakistan’s North Waziristan tribal region by a military offensive launched nearly a year ago.The Kunduz province, a relatively wealthy region of grain and cotton fields, sits astride the old Silk Road and would provide access to neighboring Central Asian countries as well as China, all of which have grappled with Islamic militancy. Safi said the Taliban are already forcing farmers to hand over 10 percent of their crops to the group as a tithe.“They are fighting very hard to have a safe place in northern Afghanistan,” Safi said.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The difference between men and women when it comes to pain “We cannot destroy the houses of the poor civilians when the Taliban are inside so we cannot use our heavy artillery against the enemy,” he said.In the city itself life has largely returned to normal, but the scorched remains of the fighting are visible on its outskirts, where officials and residents say the Taliban torched homes and other buildings as they retreated. U.N. agencies say 18,000 families, or around 100,000 people, were displaced by the fighting.In the village of Talawka, around 8 kilometers from the city, Commander Assadullah led 30 men armed with their own assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns on a recent patrol past mud-brick compounds, many of them reduced to rubble and occupied only by ducks and donkeys.The men arrived here on May 13 from a nearby district, and are among 1,000 militiamen called up by provincial authorities and given monthly stipends. Assadullah, 50, who fought the Soviets in the 1980s, said Afghanistan’s security forces are no match for the Taliban’s “professional fighters.”The insurgents “have strong front lines, they are using anti-personnel and anti-tank mines. They use the houses and the basements for cover,” he said. He added that his men would be unable to drive them out without better air and ground support from the military. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility There are ominous signs of a growing IS presence in northern Afghanistan. Safi said fighters have raised the group’s black flag in nearby villages, and that foreign fighters from Turkey, Chechnya, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan have been found among the dead.A Western intelligence official said the extent of the IS presence in Afghanistan remains unclear, saying “there is a lot of self-branding, rather than franchising.”But an Afghan intelligence official said the group is present in at least four of the country’s 34 provinces, mainly in the south. He pointed to the beheading of seven Afghan soldiers in northern Badakhshan province last month, noting that the tactic has rarely been used by the Taliban. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to comment publicly on the matter.Gen. John F. Campbell, the commander of international forces in Afghanistan, said Saturday that the IS group is actively recruiting but is not yet operational in the country. He also noted reports that IS militants have clashed with the Taliban.Safi, the Kunduz governor, said the army had managed to push back the insurgents to Gor Tepa, some 15 kilometers from the provincial capital, but that their progress was slow because the Taliban were occupying civilian homes and using human shields. Top Stories center_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help Sponsored Stories In this Thursday, May 21, 2015 photo, local militia group fighters walk past a building torched by Taliban fighters at Talawka village in Kunduz province, north of Kabul, Afghanistan. Fighting has been raging in Kunduz for more than a month. Pushed back by army reinforcements that arrived days after the assault began, insurgents now occupy villages in Gor Tepa, 15 kilometers (12 miles) from the provincial capital, also called Kunduz. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul) 5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist KUNDUZ, Afghanistan (AP) — Taliban insurgents, their ranks swelled by foreign fighters pushed across the border from Pakistan, nearly surrounded this northern Afghan city last month with an offensive that stunned local authorities and raised concerns over their ability to defend the country without U.S. and foreign combat troops.Under pressure from a yearlong military offensive in neighboring Pakistan, the Taliban and allied militants — some waving the black flags of the Islamic State group — appear to be trying to carve out a new safe haven in northern Afghanistan that could give them access to Central Asia and China, Afghan officials say. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img read more

Japan Philippines to talk about transfer of military goods

first_img Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober The Philippines and the U.S. have protested China’s land reclamation and building up of islands in disputed seas. Japan, meanwhile, is at odds with China over a group of uninhabited islands in the East China Sea.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Sponsored Stories Arizona families, Arizona farms: providing the local community with responsibly produced dairy Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies TOKYO (AP) — Japan and the Philippines agreed Thursday to start talks on transferring Japanese military hardware and technology to the Southeast Asian country trying to upgrade its defenses.Tokyo eased restrictions on military equipment and technology export last year as part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push to expand Japan’s military role abroad.Under the strategic partnership agreement signed by Abe and the visiting Philippine President Benigno Aquino III, the two countries will begin talks aimed at Japan exporting hardware that may include anti-submarine reconnaissance aircraft and radar technology. The rules and details would still have to be discussed. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Japanese media reported that P-3C anti-submarine reconnaissance aircraft and radar technology are possible export items. A sale of the P-3C, originally designed by Lockeed Martin Corp. and produced in Japan by Kawasaki Heavy Industries, would be more fully fledged military export than those currently being discussed under the new rules.Tokyo has signed defense cooperation agreements with a number of countries to complement its cornerstone alliance with the U.S.It is discussing exporting US-2 amphibious aircraft — mainly for maritime rescue purposes — to India, and is competing against France and Germany to build Australia’s next submarine fleet.The strategic partnership agreement with the Philippines focuses on defense and security cooperation but also includes economic assistance from Japan. Tokyo signed a similar agreement with Malaysia last month.Earlier Thursday, Japan and the Philippines signed a deal confirming the supply of 10 patrol vessels to the Philippine coast guard so it can step up patrols around South China Sea islands that are claimed by the Philippines but contested by China.Abe said Japan will provide further assistance to upgrade Philippine coast guard capabilities. Patients with chronic pain give advice 0 Comments   Share   Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breacheslast_img read more

Under fire for data breach Obama personnel chief steps down

first_imgIn the OPM case, the data stolen by hackers included criminal, financial, health, employment and residency histories, as well as information about families and acquaintances. The second, larger attack affected not only applicants for security clearances but also nearly 2 million of their spouses, housemates and others.Numerous U.S. lawmakers who have been briefed by federal investigators have said emphatically that China was responsible, and even National Intelligence Director James Clapper has said publicly that China is the “leading suspect.”Yet even as Archuleta stepped down, the White House declined to point the finger at Beijing, reflecting the diplomatic sensitivities involved in such an accusation against a global economic superpower. Obama’s cybersecurity coordinator, Michael Daniel, said cryptically, “Just because we’re not doing public attribution does not mean that we’re not taking steps to deal with the matter.”U.S. officials have said the hackers do not appear to have used the data since the theft. The White House said it has stepped up cybersecurity efforts, and in early June government employees received notice that OPM would offer credit-monitoring services and identity-theft insurance to those affected. On Thursday, Archuleta had rebuffed demands that she resign, declaring she was “committed to the work that I am doing.” But her continued tenure at the agency grew untenable as calls from lawmakers — including members of Obama’s own party — mushroomed. On Friday morning, she came to the White House to personally submit her resignation to Obama.He named Beth Cobert, currently deputy director for management at the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, to step in as acting director at OPM.“It’s quite clear that new leadership, with a set of skills and experiences that are unique to the urgent challenges that OPM faces, are badly needed,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest.Archuleta’s resignation came one day after the administration disclosed that the number of people affected by the federal data breach was far greater than previously known. In addition to 4.2 million people whose records were stolen in an initial hack first revealed earlier this year, more than 21.5 million had their Social Security numbers and other sensitive information stolen in a second hack, believed to be the biggest in U.S. history.Archuleta offered her resignation “of her own volition” and wasn’t forced out, Earnest said. At the same time, he conceded that Americans affected by the breach are still “due additional information” from the agency about what happened and how to protect themselves. How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Comments   Share   Top Stories FILE – In this June 25, 2015, file photo, Office of Personnel Management (OPM) director Katherine Archuleta testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Obama administration says hackers stole Social Security numbers from more than 21 million people and took other sensitive information when government computer systems were compromised. The number affected by the breach is higher than the 14 million figure that investigators gave The Associated Press in June. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)center_img Men’s health affects baby’s health too Sponsored Stories Republican lawmakers who had fueled the growing calls for her resignation, including House Speaker John Boehner, said it was too little, too late. Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska responded to the news with a two-word statement: “Not enough.”“It’s a Band-Aid, but it’s not going to stop the bleeding,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. He said in an interview that OPM still lacks a functional system to protect private data held by what is effectively the largest human resources department in the world.“It’s time to bring in the nerds,” he added.But J. David Cox Sr., president of the American Federation of Government Employees, put part of the blame on Congress for failing to adequately fund OPM. “Firing one individual solves nothing,” he said.Archuleta joins a small but notable group of top Obama administration officials who have resigned under pressure from Congress and the public. Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki stepped down last year amid a growing scandal over VA health care, and Secret Service Director Julia Pierson was pushed aside in 2014 following breaches to Obama’s security. Obama forced acting Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Steven Miller to resign in 2013 after revelations came to light about an IRS office’s treatment of tea party applications for tax-exempt status. Cobert, the budget office’s chief performance officer, has been confirmed by the Senate once before, which could make her an attractive candidate to be Archuleta’s permanent replacement. Prior to joining the administration, Cobert worked for nearly three decades as a consultant for McKinsey & Company.___Associated Press writers Jack Gillum, Alicia A. Caldwell, Jim Kuhnhenn and Julie Pace contributed to this report.___Follow Josh Lederman on Twitter at http://twitter.com/joshledermanAPCopyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies WASHINGTON (AP) — The embattled head of the government’s personnel office abruptly stepped down Friday, bowing to mounting pressure following the unprecedented breach of private information her agency was entrusted to protect.Katherine Archuleta had served as director of the federal Office of Personnel Management since November 2013. The former national political director for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, Archuleta came under scathing criticism amid revelations this year that hackers — widely believed to be China’s government — had infiltrated her agency’s databases as well as background-check records for millions who applied for U.S. security clearances. Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to helplast_img read more

US stocks open mostly higher on stronger earnings

first_img U.S. stocks are mostly higher after several companies reported earnings gains.General Motors, Raytheon and Sandisk all rose early Thursday after reporting results that were better than analysts were expecting.A handful of companies in the Dow Jones industrial average didn’t do as well, pulling the 30-stock index slightly lower.American Express, Caterpillar and 3M all released weaker-than-expected results.The Dow was down 27 points, or 0.2 percent, at 17,823 as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time. Top Stories Comments   Share   Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Mesa family survives lightning strike to home People walk by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Thursday, July 23, 2015. Asian stock markets were mostly higher Thursday after Greece passed another bailout hurdle and New Zealand cut interest rates. (AP Photo/Ken Aragaki) Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility 4 must play golf courses in Arizona Sponsored Stories Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index was up half a point at 2,114. The Nasdaq composite rose nine points, or 0.2 percent, to 5,181.Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.33 percent.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. 5 treatments for adult scoliosislast_img read more

Flooding stirs Victorian tourism

first_imgCrowds of people are travelling to central Victoria to visit Lake Eppalock, the dry lake that is now flowing over the spillway. The Lake that has been running with less than fifteen percent of water since 2002, filled and spilled earlier this month by approximately 50,000ml of rain water, Bendigo Advertiser said. According to City of Greater Bendigo executive manager of tourism Kathryn McKenzie the restored lake has attracted an array of visitors and has filled caravan parks that have been empty since the drought. “It has lifted the spirits, lifted a lot of families who are coming back for leisure and boating activities,” she said. “This is certainly good for the lake and the surrounding areas. “Services such as garages, newsagents and food outlets all experience some of the benefits.” Heathcote Visitor Information Centre co-ordinator Fiona McClure said work in the areas for traders had increased and inquiries to the centre were on the rise.“Talking to traders… trade has been constant over the weekend,” she said. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.Jlast_img read more

Qantas may shut down maintenance facilities

first_imgAt least one of Qantas’ heavy maintenance facilities is “almost certain” to close, it was reported in The Age. Australian Licensed Aircraft Engineers Association (ALAEA) federal secretary, Steve Purvinas believes the airline is seeking to eradicate one of Victoria’s facilities. “I think ultimately they [Qantas] want it all consolidated in Brisbane. They claim the airline can’t sustain numerous maintenance facilities around the country,” he told the newspaper publication. This news comes just weeks after Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said the airline “must adapt or die” in the wake of dramatic share devaluation. Mr Purvinas hinted at the massive potential for numerous job cuts by the nation’s flagship carrier earlier last month. Thousands of maintenance positions could be on the line if the airline was to cease operations at one of its three heavy maintenance workshops. State Aviation Industry Minister Gordon Rich-Phillips said he had met Qantas twice this week alone, while the Premier had also met them. “We are keen to see what the options are around heavy maintenance,” he said. Image source: Radschool Magazine Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.Tlast_img read more

EK QR megacarrier wont fly with EU

first_imgA merger between Emirates and Qatar Airways “will never happen”. A tie-up between Emirates and Qatar Airways would never be permitted because of the political backlash the merger would receive from European airlines, Emirates president Tim Clark has assured. Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker had the idea of aligning the two Middle Eastern carriers to create a “mega-carrier” earlier in November, 7DAYS reported. Emirates president Tim Clark said that although there had been no formal discussions, the idea of a merger would be economically positive but asserted it “will never happen”.An Emirates and Qatar merger would have “seismic repercussions in the aero-political framework”,?Mr Clark told Aviation Week.“You put the two together and you would face the most formidable international airline group that has ever been formed… That’s why it will never happen.” Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.Tlast_img read more

Kerala Tourism wraps up 2014 Australia and New Zealand Roadshow

first_img(L-R): Mr. Vibahava Tripathi, Assistant Director, India Tourism, Mr. Suman Billa, Secretary of Kerala Tourism, Dr. Vinod Bahade, Deputy Consul General of the Consulate General India Office in SydneyOver 215 agents, wholesalers and media were educated on the destination also known as God’s Own Country.The Sydney event was hosted by secretary of Kerala Tourism Suman Billa, with guest of honour, Deputy Consul General of the Consulate General India Office in Sydney, Dr. Vinod Bahade.Mr Billa said over the past four years, Kerala has seen a 60 per cent growth in visitor numbers from Australia and a 68 per cent increase from New Zealand.“These visitation figures are set to strengthen further over the next four years as air-lift and product diversification increases, enticing more and more Aussies and Kiwis to cross the Indian Ocean and experience ‘God’s Own Country’,” Mr Billa said.Kerala Tourism is also collaborating with the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) in a first to recreate the original spice route. In a move which will connect 31 countries across Europe, Asia and Far East. Kerala Tourism was joined by ten key suppliers to host the multiple trade events, these included: Abad Hotels and Resorts, The Blue Yonder, CGH Earth, Intersight Tours and Travels, Kairali – The Ayervedic Healing Village, Kumarakom Lake Resort, Lotus DMC, Marvel Tours, Spiceland Holidays and Uday Samudra Leisure Beach Hotel.  ​Source = ETB News: Megan Tranlast_img read more