Why I’d invest £5,000 now in UK shares in an ISA to make a passive income

first_img Peter Stephens | Tuesday, 16th February, 2021 Making a passive income from UK shares has become more difficult over the last year. The coronavirus pandemic prompted financial uncertainty for many companies across the FTSE 350. This resulted in reduced dividend payouts, or even a cancellation of dividends in some cases.However, the economic outlook is set to get better. This may mean improved performances for many businesses that lead to higher dividend payouts. Alongside the capital growth potential of UK stocks, this could make now the right time to invest £5,000, or any other amount, in a diverse selection of income shares in an ISA.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Buying UK shares to make a passive incomeDespite many UK shares cutting their dividends, it is still possible to make a generous passive income from FTSE 350 shares. In fact, both the FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 trade lower than they did a year ago. As such, some of their members have share prices that are down on their previous highs. This could mean that they now offer higher yields than they did a year ago – as long as they have been able to maintain their dividend payouts.This could mean that it is possible to obtain a 4% or 5% average yield from a portfolio of UK stocks. In a low-interest-rate environment, this could be a relatively high income return. It also has the capacity to rise at an above-inflation pace over the coming years. The world and UK economies are widely forecast to recover strongly as vaccine rollouts continue. This could prompt improving operating conditions for many UK shares that allow them to pay higher dividends over the long term.UK stocks could offer capital growthInvesting £5,000 in UK shares could also be a shrewd move because of their capital growth prospects. Many FTSE 350 shares trade on valuations that are significantly below their historic averages. This could signal that they offer wide margins of safety that produce relatively high returns. Since the stock market has historically reverted to its long-term average values, buying today’s cheap shares may be a profitable move.Doing so through a tax-efficient account such as a Stocks and Shares ISA could offer further improvements to returns. The lack of capital gains tax or dividend tax charged on investments in an ISA may widen the gap in total returns versus a bog-standard share dealing account.Risk managementOf course, there is never any guarantee of a passive income or capital growth from a portfolio of UK shares. They could experience very tough operating conditions in future that are not fully reflected in their current valuations.However, with dividends forecast to grow in the coming years, yields being high in a low-interest-rate environment and the economic outlook expected to improve, UK stocks could offer impressive total returns in the long term. Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares FREE REPORT: Why this £5 stock could be set to surge Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Get the full details on this £5 stock now – while your report is free. Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee.center_img Are you on the lookout for UK growth stocks?If so, get this FREE no-strings report now.While it’s available: you’ll discover what we think is a top growth stock for the decade ahead.And the performance of this company really is stunning.In 2019, it returned £150million to shareholders through buybacks and dividends.We believe its financial position is about as solid as anything we’ve seen.Since 2016, annual revenues increased 31%In March 2020, one of its senior directors LOADED UP on 25,000 shares – a position worth £90,259Operating cash flow is up 47%. (Even its operating margins are rising every year!)Quite simply, we believe it’s a fantastic Foolish growth pick.What’s more, it deserves your attention today.So please don’t wait another moment. Why I’d invest £5,000 now in UK shares in an ISA to make a passive income Enter Your Email Address I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. See all posts by Peter Stephenslast_img read more

ITDG changes its name to Practical Action

first_img Tagged with: Giving/Philanthropy The Intermediate Technology Development Group (ITDG), set up in the 1960s to address poverty and help redress the problem of the rich world off loading inappropriate technology onto the poor world, has today been renamed Practical Action.The charity believes that its new name will help it communicate to a wider audience because it better reflects its mission.A spokesperson said: “we believe our new name – Practical Action – better explains what we do but is also a name that our existing and potential friends and supporters will remember.” Advertisement ITDG changes its name to Practical Action About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving.  29 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis Howard Lake | 30 June 2005 | Newslast_img read more

Former U.S. political prisoner, Ramona Africa, discusses Mumia Abu-Jamal’s incarceration, U.S. prisons and Donald Trump

first_imgFormer U.S. political prisoner Ramona Africa is the Minister of Communication for the MOVE Organization and a Philadelphia-based organizer with the International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal.  She is also the only living survivor of the 1985 MOVE bombing, when the FBI and Philadelphia police dropped two C-4 bombs on her organization’s home, killing 11 people.  Read along as we discuss the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal, the conditions of U.S. prisons and Donald Trump.Lamont Lilly: Ramona, thank you for sharing your time with me today.  Current U.S. political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal is an international symbol of people’s resistance. His writing and journalism have traveled worldwide.  Not only was he a founding member of the Philadelphia chapter of the Black Panther Party, Mumia was also an early supporter of the MOVE organization. (See “We Want Freedom:  A Life in the Black Panther Party,” by Mumia Abu-Jamal)  What does Mumia mean to MOVE?  What does he mean to the city of Philadelphia?Ramona Africa: Mumia began his journalistic career writing for the Black Panther Party newspaper at 14 or 15 years old. When it came to issues of the people, Mumia always covered these issues of concern. When he heard about the MOVE organization and began covering our demonstrations and court cases, Mumia would actually come to the prison and interview MOVE members right there.Mumia’s the only journalist that consistently and accurately reported on MOVE — the truth, I mean. And because he was telling the truth about MOVE and exposing what the system was doing, not only to MOVE, but to poor people, people of color, and even poor whites, he earned the scorn of the Philadelphia police department and [Mayor] Frank Rizzo.  (See tinyurl.com/ly3w5b6) He earned the scorn of city officials. He lost jobs.Mumia used to work for National Public Radio. He worked for a local radio station here in Philadelphia called WBAF. He worked for the Philadelphia Tribune, the first Black publication in this country, I believe. But he ended up becoming a freelance journalist because the people he was working for were trying to make him compromise and tell the system’s story, and not the truth.  Mumia would not compromise. He refused. He ended up becoming a freelance journalist and driving a cab part time to supplement his income and take care of his family. That’s how he happened to be at 13th and Locust streets on Dec. 9, 1981.LL: What happened on Dec. 9, 1981?  That particular evening is what led to Mumia’s incarceration. Can you give us some details on that?RA:  Mumia was working at night, and on this particular night he was letting a fare off at 13th and Locust streets. He happened to see police lights circling. Being a journalist, he wanted to see what was going on. He went over to where the police vehicle was and saw this white cop beating this Black man. He went over a little closer to see about the brother, and to see if he could stop the cop from beating this man.Mumia then realized that the man who was being beaten by the cop was his own brother, Billy. So, Mumia tried to intervene and ended up being shot by the cop. Shortly after that, someone shot the cop. Of course, they’re saying that Mumia did it — but the conflicts here are unquestionable.They said Officer Daniel Faulkner was shot with a .44-caliber gun.  That’s what they said. Mumia was licensed to carry a gun because he had been robbed twice while driving his cab. He was driving the night shift, but Mumia’s gun was a .38-caliber. Witnesses said that the person who shot the cop ran down the street and down this alleyway. Mumia was shot sitting on the curb. Shot!  He didn’t run anywhere. But when they realized who they had — as in Mumia Abu-Jamal — who was right there in their grasp, they didn’t look for anything else and didn’t want to hear anything else.  This was their opportunity to get Mumia Abu-Jamal [former Black Panther], which the Philadelphia police department wanted to do for a long time.People should know that a man named Arnold Beverly came forward and confessed to shooting Daniel Faulkner. He gave a whole résumé about other cops who had been killed and everything. The courts said he wasn’t credible. But how could they know that? They never let him come into court and testify. They said he “wasn’t credible” and never even entertained his confession.LL:  Mumia has been in prison for over three decades now, working on four, most of his time being in solitary confinement and on death row.  They’ve tried to break him, but he continues to find strength and keep writing and teaching, even while incarcerated. Right now, Mumia is sick with hepatitis C. There has been a national movement to get Mumia the medicine that would cure it, but the state of Pennsylvania is not allowing that.  What the hell is going on?RA: Well, there are two attorneys fighting hard on this, Robert Boyle and Bret Grote, who have been fighting to get Mumia treated. (tinyurl.com/lmy4z49)  There is a cure for hepatitis C — and that’s what they are pushing for.  It’s a drug called Harvoni.  The thing is, it’s a two-prong fight. Harvoni in India and Africa costs like $4 a pill, $7 a pill. In the United States, it’s like $1,000 for one pill. The cure is a 90-day treatment.  You have to take it every day for 90 days. It is a proven cure, not just a “treatment.”  This is the cure for hepatitis C.One prong of this fight is the pharmaceutical companies. How can you dare charge people $1,000 a pill ($90,000 basically for the cure)? Yet, in other countries, much poorer countries, they’re charging people $4 and $7 for this pill. I’m not saying that they should raise the price of their pills. I’m saying that these pharmaceutical companies here in the U.S. should not be charging $1,000 for it over here.LL: You mentioned a “two-prong” fight.  What is the second problem that you all are fighting?RA: The other prong is what you just spoke on — the institution. Mumia is so well-known. The situation with him gets a lot of attention. What the institution is saying is that if they give the treatment to Mumia, then they will have to give it to the other 6,000 to 7,000 inmates in the state of Pennsylvania who also have hepatitis C. And yes, yes, you should!  You took custody of these people! You took responsibility for them! So yes, if they’re sick, of course you’re supposed to treat them! I mean, come on.LL: I heard that the prison where Mumia Abu-Jamal is being detained doesn’t have clean drinking water. Is that true?  You also have family members in that prison. What have you heard about this?RA:  Let me tell you. I know people have heard about Flint, Mich. (tinyurl.com/ludzcd4), but contaminated water is not just in Flint. The prison that our brother, Eddie Africa, and Mumia are in is called Mahanoy Correctional Institution. The water there is so, so bad! It is so bad that they started giving the inmates three little Dixie cups of water with each meal. This is ridiculous! That’s nine little Dixie cups of water per day because the regular water is not drinkable. This is what they’re giving them, nine little Dixie cups of water per day? It’s unreal!  Most people have no idea this is going on.Where my brother Mike Africa is being incarcerated — at Graterford Prison here in Pennsylvania — the water is really bad there, too. He convinced the “Lifers Association” to sell bottled water. It’s one of their fundraisers. But he pays close to $20 for a case of water. That’s ridiculous. He’s spending $60 a month for water.They were telling the guards straight up: Don’t drink the water.  Bring your own.  My brother Mike works in the kitchen there, and he was telling me that in the guards’ dining room they have filters on the water spigots, but not for the inmates, of course.  That is the state of what’s happening in this country, not just with Mumia, but in prisons all over this country. (tinyurl.com/mlmapdu)I don’t know what it’s going to take for people to really — and I mean really! — get the message that this system and those running it are not operating in our interests, in the interests of the people.  Their only interest is money and keeping this system going.  I don’t know when people are really going to get that, but we can’t look to this system for anything.LL: Speaking of “the system” and those who are running it, what are your thoughts on the election of Donald Trump?RA:   I’m not a Hillary Clinton fan at all, but the bottom line is they told people to their faces: “Your vote doesn’t count.”  You don’t elect the president.  They say that Hillary had over 2 million more votes than Donald Trump.  (tinyurl.com/zkayrtu) So, why he is now the president?  Because this mystical electoral college selects the president.  That’s why.  It has nothing to do with who “the people” elected.  They tell you that to your face, and you’re still going to believe in this system?  You’re still going to hallucinate that you can get something out if this?I don’t know what it’s going to take for people to realize that we don’t need this system.  We can’t use or get anything from this system.  It’s the system that needs us, that relies on the people, not the other way around.  We have to let this system go and make up our minds to do for ourselves, because we sure aren’t getting anything from this system.  Nothing!LL: We wish you and Brother Mumia Abu-Jamal much strength and continued resistance.  We honor your many sacrifices for the people.  Thank you for your time, Ramona!RA:  Thank you, Lamont.  Long live the revolution!  Free Mumia!  Ona move!Lamont Lilly was the 2016 Workers World Party U.S. vice presidential candidate. In 2015, he was a U.S. delegate at the International Forum for Justice in Palestine in Beirut, Lebanon.  He is also an activist and organizer in the Black Lives Matter movement.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Clinical Assistant Professor 10 month

first_imgPosition SummaryThe Department of Rehabilitation Sciences in the School of PublicHealth and Health Professions ( SPHHP ) is recruiting astate-funded, 10-month Clinical Assistant/Associate Professor inthe Occupational Therapy Program. The successful candidate willcontribute to the teaching, scholarship and service mission of theprogram. Duties may include teaching lecture and laboratorycourses; overseeing service learning in the community; mentoringstudents in clinical research projects, advising students; andcontributing to ongoing curriculum quality improvement.Knowledge of higher education and contemporary clinical practiceare essential along with research experience and excellentcommunication skills. Experience in physical disabilities, mentalhealth, management and/or community-based practice arepreferred.Department, School, and UniversityThe Department of Rehabilitation Sciences at UB has a longstandinghistory of excellence in clinical education in programs leading tothe Doctor of Physical Therapy, the BS/MS in Occupational Therapy,and the PhD in Rehabilitation Science, with a post professional OTDprogram in development. The PT and OT entry-level programs haveenjoyed continuous accreditation for more than 60 years. The OTprogram is highly competitive with a class-size of approximately 50students, and received a full 10-year accreditation from ACOTE in2017. For more information on the SPHHP Department ofRehabilitation Sciences, please visit:http://sphhp.buffalo.edu/rehabilitation-science.html.UB SPHHP is one of the only schools in the country to include bothpublic health and health professions, providing uniqueopportunities for collaboration amongst students and faculty. Formore information on UB SPHHP, please visit:http://sphhp.buffalo.edu/.The University at Buffalo is the State University of New York’slargest and most comprehensive research-intensive university and isits primary center for professional education and training. We areMiddle States Commission on Higher Education accredited and amember of the Association of American Universities. UB provides arich environment for collaborative and transdisciplinary researchwith faculty within the SPHHP and at other schools located in theAcademic Health Center (Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, DentalMedicine, Pharmacy and Nursing).EnvironmentBuffalo is the second-largest city in New York State and is locatedon the shores of Lake Erie, upriver of the majestic Niagara Falls.Buffalo – the City of Good Neighbors – is undergoing a renaissancewith a rapidly growing economy, vital academic health sciencescenter, and affordable cost of living. The Western New Yorkeducational system is excellent. Buffalo-Niagara is a region of 1.2million people, world-class art galleries and museums, acomprehensive city-wide system of parks and green space, a vibranttheater and music community, and major and minor league sportsteams.Annual salary commensurate with qualification and rank ofappointment.University at Buffalo is an affirmative action-equal opportunityemployer and, in keeping with our commitment, welcomes all to applyincluding veterans and individuals with disabilities.Minimum Qualifications• Earned post-professional doctoral degree• Current Occupational Therapist, Registered ( OTR )• Eligible for New York Occupational Therapy licensure• Knowledge of higher education and contemporary clinical areessential along with research experience and excellentcommunication skills.Preferred QualificationsExperience in physical disabilities, mental health, managementand/or community-based practice are preferredFor more information, click the “How to Apply” button.last_img read more

Runners eat to victory for relay race fundraiser

first_imgFew would think to combine donuts and a relay race, but that is exactly what happened on South Quad Sunday. The track and field team held the Riley Donut Run Sunday as a fundraiser for Riley Children’s Hospital. “We came up with the idea based of a fundraiser held at NC State,” junior Doug Onuscheck, the event organizer said. “There they run two miles, eat a dozen donuts and run two more miles. Risk management wouldn’t let us do that, so we shortened the run.” The donut run was a relay race where teams of four ran the length of South Quad, ate three donuts and ran back. The first team to have everyone finish won. “The first race is more of a fun run,” Onuscheck said. “The second race is more exciting and competitive.” Not all the participants were track team members or even runners. Some just decided to form teams because they thought it sounded like a good time or because the money was going to charity. “We joined at the last minute. We were just drawn into the event,” sophomore Chrissy Finkel said. Finkel and her team, Jump for Children, were excited to have a good time while raising money for charity. They were a last minute entry; one of their runners even wore jeans. “I didn’t even have to worry about trying to keep up, everyone was so much faster,” Finkel said. “It was just a really fun event.” While some teams were there for fun, others were there to support Riley and run a competitive race. Team Deca, made up of the decathletes on the track team, won the relay. They came out strong and at one point were almost a minute and a half ahead of the rest of the competition. The second place finisher was the team No Shirts, No Shoes, No Service, who are all jumpers on the track team. Rounding out the top three was Team Gryffindor, made up of two members of the track team, a student manager and a regular student. In the end, what really helped Team Deca clinch their victory was their donut eating strategy, especially that of senior Justin Schneider. “First I squished all three donuts into one big ball which I dunked in water. Then I squeezed the water out of the donuts into my mouth, which got rid of the sugar,” Schneider said. Other runners tried to shove all three donuts into their mouth at once. Some ate each one separately, but everyone had a great time comparing their eating strategy. This is the first year for the event and the track team was just trying to see how excited people would get before they set any goals for fundraising. “We aren’t sure how much we’ve made yet, we’re just kind rolling with it and seeing how it ends up,” Onuscheck said. Overall, the event was deemed a success, Onuscheck said.last_img read more

Mayor Calls For Raising Parking Fees, Fines And Eliminating Free Parking Spaces

first_imgJAMESTOWN — It may cost more to park in downtown Jamestown, cost more for parking tickets and have less, if any, free parking.According to a proposal from Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist, which will be discussed at Monday evening’s City Council work session, parking violations lag behind other similar-sized cities. His proposed increases would start Jan. 1, 2021, if approved.“This would bring us to a lower level, but increase revenue and fine structure,” Sundquist said in his recommendation to Council.Under his plan, parking violations fines for meter violations, meter feeding and overtime in zone violations would increase from $10 to $15. They were last increased from $5 to $10 in January, 2013. Failure to pay would double the fines after 20 days and triple them after30 days. From March 2019, through February, 2020, the average fine collected in Jamestown was $19.12, compared to the national average of $32.40, according to numbers provided to council by Sundquist.In addition, Sundquist seeks to raise the hourly parking rate at metered locations to $1 per hour,“Parking meter revenue in 2019 was $156,804. This resolution could potentially double-parking meter revenue,” Sundquist’s proposal said.As well, Sundquist wants council to approve adding parking meters to 150 parking spaces in the Central Business District which are currently free parking. He also suggested increasing the fees to local businesses from $300 to $600 for a Business Owner Parking Permit. Starting January 1, if approved, the city would eliminate the two-hour free zone parking.“Approximately 150 spaces would now have meters in the most highly trafficked area of downtown. The effects on parking revenue could potentially be enormous, especially as the parking spots with the most value and use will now have meters,” Sundquist’s proposal said. “The City has enough meters in storage to have every spot metered and could quickly deploy the meters into the free zone for operations starting Jan. 1, 2021. Increasing the business owner permit fees to be in line with garage rates will increase the amount collected there.”The current so-called courtesy parking zone runs from West Fourth Street and Cherry Street to Pine Street between West Fourth and West Second Street. The current two-hour free parking runs from North Main Street to Institute Street along East Second Street.The full proposal from the city is posted below:Failed to fetch Error: URL to the PDF file must be on exactly the same domain as the current web page. Click here for more infoShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window),So because people in jamestown are better about avoiding parking violations and the city makes less money off of them then the national average youre going to raise the costs of everything from the actual violation to the cost to park even the businesses that have parking lots? Politicians are a joke anymorelast_img read more

Australia’s AGL Energy unveils plans for 500MW battery at Liddell coal plant

first_imgAustralia’s AGL Energy unveils plans for 500MW battery at Liddell coal plant FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:AGL Energy has kick-started the transformation of the ageing Liddell coal-fired power station, lodging initial development documents for a new big battery of up to 500MW – more than three times the size of the Tesla big battery in South Australia, which remains the biggest in the world.The 1,680MW Liddell power station – one of biggest in NSW – has been flagged for closure by AGL in 2023, despite repeated calls by the federal government to keep it open. AGL has intentions to repurpose the existing infrastructure at the Liddell site, once the coal power station is decommissioned to support the construction of new generation and storage infrastructure.The preferred plan for the Liddell power station site developed by AGL includes an initial big battery installation of 150MW, but the planning approval it is seeking from the NSW government is for a big battery of up to 500MW in total.The hours of storage – expressed in megawatt hours – is yet to be determined, but the Liddell battery is set to be overtake the Tesla big battery at Hornsdale in South Australia – currently being upgraded from 100MW/129MWh to 150MW/194MWh and setting new records in testing – although much bigger batteries are being built or are planned in the US.AGL says that it has already approached a number of suppliers to tender for the supply of the battery systems to be installed at the Liddell site and has lodged an initial scoping document with the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment.The announcement comes just a day after AGL told shareholders during its annual earnings update that it had set a target to grow its battery storage and demand response programs to up to 1,200MW in available capacity.[Michael Mazengarb]More: AGL seeks approval for 500MW big battery at site of Liddell coal generatorlast_img read more

Wyandanch Shooting Injures Man, Gunman Sought

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A man was shot and wounded following an argument with a man in Wyandanch on Monday afternoon, said Suffolk County police who are now searching for the gunman.Keith Garrison was standing on North 15th Street just north of Merritt Avenue when he got into a fight with a man who pulled out a gun and fired shots at Garrison shortly after 4 p.m., police said.The victim was struck in the neck and back. He was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center in West Islip where he is listed in serious but stable condition.First Squad detectives ask anyone with information regarding this shooting to contact them at 631-854-8152 or call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-2202-TIPS.last_img read more

How millennials can save the world while saving for retirement

first_imgIf you are a millennial investor – or just think like one – you are likely to have some very different attitudes about investing than previous generations. We conducted a survey and this one stands out for me: 67% of millennials say they want investments to reflect their social and environmental values. (For women, it’s 76%.) Putting your money where your beliefs are is a great idea.What’s not a great idea is ignoring your retirement, and that is, unfortunately, a common millennial attitude as well. It’s hard to focus on retirement when you are starting out . According to our survey, only 36% of millennials monitor their retirement savings and only 38% increase savings when they can. There’s something ironic in worrying about the planet’s future while ignoring your own.The good news is you don’t have to choose. If you have a sustainable investing strategy option in your retirement account that invests based on social or environmental criteria, you can help do some good for the world while also potentially doing some good for your retirement. continue reading » 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Game of Thrones Recap: The Red Woman Revealed

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Beware of spoilersThere you have it folks, Jon Snow is dead. Well, for at least one more episode.While we assumed most of the Monday Morning Quarterbacking would be devoted to Jon’s ostensible demise, it was Melisandre that captivated Sunday night’s audience with the reveal that the Red Woman is much older than all of Westeros’ false kings (and Queens) combined.But the Lord of Light priestess’ shocker was just one of the many captivating scenes in a packed hour that effectively set the stage for the much-ballyhooed sixth season, which for the first time won’t be anchored by George R.R. Martin’s book the series is based on.Here’s your LIP GOT recap and some takeaways from Episode 1, The Red Woman:The Game of Thrones show-runners did not waste any time bringing Kit Harrington back into the fold. The premiere started where Season 5 left off, with Jon Snow’s body lying in a pool of his own blood. This time Jon was all alone.There was the omnipresent snowfall at Castle Black mixed in with the heartbreaking howls from Ghost, Jon’s now ownerless direwolf. First on the scene was Davos, who quickly instructed those loyal to Jon to whisk his body away. The few men by Davos’ side barricaded themselves inside a room at Castle Black, where they seem also to be standing guard next to Jon’s body.If he’s not buried or turned into ashes anytime soon, then it makes it exceedingly likely that fan predictions of he-who-knows-nothing’s rebirth will indeed come to fruition. We expect Jon will be lying in a state of repose for some time to build anticipation for his assumed reincarnation, if it ever does come.This brings us to Melisandre, who many have predicted would be the one to bring our dear Jon back from the dead before the frozen zombies get a hold of him. But with Stannis confirmed dead (we think), it seems the once over-confident Melisandre has lost her swagger. Clearly deflated by Stannis’ overwhelming defeat at the hands of the treacherous Boltons, the fire-loving clairvoyant is shocked by Jon’s murder, telling Davos that the flames showed Jon fighting at Winterfell.Perhaps losing confidence in her own beloved deity, we get the premiere’s most compelling reveal: that Melisandre uses her power—perhaps thanks to her supernatural necklace or that well-placed potion—to hide the fact that she is extremely old—perhaps even centuries old. As if she feels like her one true God has betrayed her, The Lord of Light’s sultry enforcer in Westeros morphs into a sagging senior shell of her supernatural self. All she could muster is a slow climb into bed, beside a raging fire.The premiere also offered some hopeful moments, none more inspiring than Brienne’s rescue of Sansa Stark, who GOT fans will remember, fled the Boltons with the help of the man formerly known as Theon. But their legs were no match for human-tormenting Ramsay’s hounds and horse-backed goons. Before Sansa could be taken into captivity yet again, Brienne and a newly confident Podrick emerged from the forest to finally deliver on one of her oaths.After one of those beautifully choreographed GOT battle scenes, it was Brienne and Podrick who emerged victorious, ending with Brienne pledging her life to Sansa, an offering the hardened Stark girl gracefully accepts. Sansa’s rescue is indeed significant because we know the restless Boltons require her help to unite the North. With many families in the North still loyal to the Starks, it could embolden others to join ranks around Sansa if she can successfully rally the northerners to her side. Watch out, Boltons!As for Brienne, it is surprising that she made her long-sought recovery of Sansa one episode into the season after failing miserably to find Catelyn Stark’s eldest daughter. Be that as it may, the twist does move the plot along and gives us a small measure of hope that Sansa will take all of those gross injustices that have befallen her and her family and use it to dish out a healthy helping of revenge.Back where winter is an afterthought and fire-breathing dragons are once again shrieking across the sky, Daenerys is having a tough go of it. The Mother of Dragons, who fled a Sons of the Harpy uprising in Meereen atop one of her ill-tempered dragons at the end of the last season, was dumped in Dothraki territory, where she was taken captive. A chained Daenerys is demeaned repeatedly by a pair of captors discussing how they’d have her way with her in private.Of course, little do they know that Daenerys was once the wife of a Khal. Faced with the brutal realization that she could become a Dothraki sex slave, Daenerys reveals this powerful piece of information, which as it turns out, means that no man can sleep with the wife of a dead Khal. But Daenerys’ reprieve is short-lived, as she’s told she’ll be thrown in some walled community of other Khal widows, which sounds like cold comfort at best.Danenery’s tenuous predicament would make us a little more uncomfortable if she didn’t have a trio of dragons that could save her at any moment. Nothing’s guaranteed, but it would make for one hell of a rescue op.Meanwhile, our favorite GOT pair, Tyrion and Varys are making their way around a deserted Meereen as they plan their next move. Tyrion, it seems, is primed to take over the leadership role left vacant by Daenerys’ absence. But it won’t be easy, as evidenced by the upheaval inspired by the Sons of Harpy and the burning of Daenerys’ fleet of ships. Good luck, Tyrion.Back in Lannister land, it seems like we’re finally seeing a softer side of Cersei. Told that a Dornish ship is entering the port, Cersei perks up, happy to see her daughter, Myrcella, once again. But the best Jamie could do is return to King’s Landing with their daughter’s dead body.Remarkably, Cersei blames her daughter’s death not on Jamie but on the evil witch who predicted that three of her children would perish. We all know how much Cersei loves her children, but in Myrcella she found something she didn’t know she was capable of creating: a person with a heart of gold, and not the kind the Lannisters are used to. Jamie and Cersei’s embrace after she concedes that Myrcella’s death was predetermined would be endearing if it wasn’t for that whole incest thing.But don’t be fooled by Cersei’s newfound motherly touch. With Dorne now without its king thanks to Ellaria’s coup, war with the Lannisters seems to be on the horizon.Before you go, here’s a preview of Episode 2:(Photo credit: HBO)last_img read more