PREMIERE: Kung Fu Delivers First Track From Ninja Cuts Series “Sfvendago”

first_imgThe funk-fusion masters in Kung Fu have mastered the art of blending high-caliber composition with danceable grooves. This year, the band has been hard at work in their funk dojo, practicing their musical martial arts and working on some new original material to deliver to the masses. What has come out of those sessions is a collection of singles in a series dubbed Ninja Cuts. In lieu of releasing a proper album, the band will release random singles via the Ninja Cuts series throughout the remainder of 2017. Ninja Cuts is set to provide fresh, exciting original music to the scene in small but powerful doses, and its tracks are action-packed funk-fusion at its finest.The first song up is “Sfvendago,” a track written by drummer/percussionist Adrian Tramontano and guitarist Tim Palmieri. The song was recorded at The Boatyard in Cromwell, CT. It was engineered by Matt Zeiner and was mixed by Tim Walsh. The band explained, “The song was written by our drummer Adrian, our guitar player Tim, and arranged together as a band.  The audio and video were recorded live at the same time with the only overdubs being the extra percussion tracks that Adrian recorded. The idea was to capture the essence of what we do live up close and personal for people.”You can check out Kung Fu’s upcoming tour dates on their website here or below. Take a listen to the inaugural Ninja Cut, “Sfvendago,” below in the official video shot by MKDevo.Kung Fu Tour Dates:7/14  Sterling Stage Ameribeat Festival of Arts – Sterling NY7/21   Ocean Mist – Matunuck RI*7/22  Jerry Jam – Bath NH8/11   Wild Woods Music Festival – Croydon NH8/18  Rock On! Concerts Boat Cruise – Boston MA8/19  Hop Jam – Bolton VT8/26  Infinity Hall – Hartford CT*9/7 Ardmore Hall w/ Naughty Professor – Ardmore, PA9/16  Wormtown Music Fest – Greenfield, MA*w/s/g Hayley Jane & The Primateslast_img read more

NFL Hall of Fame coach Bill Cowher has memoir out in June

first_imgNEW YORK (AP) — Hall of Fame coach and NFL analyst Bill Cowher has a book coming out in June that his publisher is calling “more than just a football story.” The former Pittsburgh Steelers coach, who led his team to a Super Bowl title at the end of the 2005 season, has a deal with Atria Books for the memoir “Heart and Steel.” Cowher, inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame, will look back not just on his career, but on his private struggles. In 2010, he lost his wife and father within three months of each other.last_img read more

Termite-fighting tips

first_imgMost people take action against pests when they see them – roaches scurrying across the kitchen counter, ants taking over the cookie jar, moles digging up the petunias. But what about the pests you can’t see, like termites?University of Georgia entomologist Brian Forschler says you may not be able to get rid of termites without a professional’s help, but you can make your home less appetizing to them.Constantly searching for food“Termites need darkness and moisture, and more often than not, moisture is associated with a termite infestation,” he said. “There are usually at least 50,000 termites in a colony, and they are constantly moving around, looking for a new food source. Then boom, they run into your house.”To discourage termites from putting your home on their menu, Forschler encourages homeowners to keep the areas around their homes free of debris like stumps, woodpiles, excessive mulch and anything that could be a potential food source. “Ten thousand termites could be feeding on a stump 3 feet from a house, which means at least 10 of them are looking around for new food, and it only takes one of them to turn to the right, find your house and let the other 9,999 know where to go for their next meal,” he said. Clean up and reroute waterForschler also recommends keeping the perimeter, especially the foundation, of your home as dry as possible. Remove excessive mulch (more than 2 inches) next to the home’s foundation, and make sure irrigation/sprinklers do not create wet spots on siding or foundations. Redirect rainwater and air conditioner condensation away from your home, too. “All these things will go a long way in keeping termites at bay,” he said. “Gutters that look like window boxes with gardens growing in them or mushrooms popping up beside the house are also signs of moisture that can be addressed by a concerned/involved property owner. The goal is to keep the soil right-up-next-to the foundation dry. No self-respecting termite will construct a tunnel into bone-dry soil.”They’re not smartForschler, who has researched termites for the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences for the past 22 years, says the pests are really different from the textbook definitions. “They are really simple, stupid animals,” he said. “Sometimes they share food and other times they don’t. They do not stay in one spot. They are constantly moving around and are far from territorial.”As part of his UGA research, Forschler studies the pests at sites across the state. He has seen first hand that five of the six species of termites found in Georgia usually swarm in the spring and eat more in the summer and less in the winter. Ninety percent of the termites he encounters in Georgia buildings are Eastern subterranean termites. “This is an invasive species that can survive even in rearranged habitats,” he said. Termites follow cracksIf termites have targeted your home, you may feel like a victim, but Forschler says most termite invasions aren’t planned. “When termites run into a guideline, a root, a crack or a crevice, they are going to follow it every time. Particularly cracks and crevices because half of their tunnel-building work has already been done for them,” he said.Sometimes these cracks and crevices are part of the home’s construction, like expansion joints. This is why termites are often found between the garage slab and the home slab or at chimneys and front/back porches.Homeowners and professionals must work togetherTermites can cause significant damage to structures, but they don’t do it over night. This gives homeowners and termite service providers an advantage in trying to manage them. Forschler says pest management professionals can treat for pests like termites, but homeowners have to do their part, too. “Pest management professionals are not magicians, home repairmen or landscapers. Homeowners have responsibilities, too, when it comes to termite control… like making certain that their landscaping choices and construction maintenance does not ‘invite’ termites,” he said.Even Forschler has fought termites at home. “I let some wooden pallets and roofing shingles sit beside my driveway for two years. I repotted some plants, but let the pots sit for several weeks next to those wooden pallets before setting them on my porch. A week later when I watered the plants, I noticed a termite tube coming out of the pot,” he said. “At first I thought the termites were traveling into the pot from the porch. But then I realized, I had moved them onto the porch.”last_img read more

Fridays on the Fly: Fly Fishing for Smallmouth Bass

first_img“Y’all better hurry.”Those were the words trumpeted from the window of the BMW parked on the bank as we urgently paddled our canoes down the James River.Thanks for the tip, buddy.The storm had crept up from behind us as we lazily floated along, casting at the bank and generally enjoying the pleasant weather and hot sun on our backs. But one quick look to our rear and we realized we could be in for a spot of trouble. The thunderheads were looming large and heading right down river with us, so we got on the paddles and tried to outrun it. This turned out to be a mistake, but one with no real alternative. It was also the first in a comedy of errors and misjudgments that often occur during trips of this nature: sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.Our party of three intrepid river runners had set out for an overnight canoe-fishing trip on the upper James River earlier in the afternoon. To go along with its stunningly good looks and historical significance, the James is also one of the best smallmouth bass fisheries in the Southeast. The plan called for a float of about four miles the first day and a 12-mile float the next day. We would camp along the river, fly fishing for smallmouth bass and sunfish, catching our dinner along the way. That was the plan at least, and we even managed to follow it for about two whole hours before all hell broke loose.But, oh, what a glorious two hours that was. Following a supremely satisfying, no-incident shuttle and put in, I put a bend in the rod on my first real cast of the day, pulling in a nice 14-inch bronzeback. I followed that quickly with another stout smallie of similar size and a couple sunfish in quick order. We were not even 300 yards from the boat ramp and already the fishing was hot. Thoughts of “trip of a lifetime” and amazing camp fish tacos floated through my head as we continued downriver to some of the best river structure I had ever seen. Sunken logs, rocky riffles, undercut banks – the juiciest of prime smallmouth bass habitat – and we were fishing hard, tagging the honey holes with blue, white, and green poppers. But just as fast as the fishing had gotten hot, it got cold – very cold.fish-e1347911528446But we remained undeterred. Those were the breaks: if it was that easy it would be called “catching,” not “fishing” right? Still, you can put your fly right in the sweet spot and not get a take only so many times before the frustration creeps into your psyche. It happens to all anglers, but especially smallmouth bass fly fishermen due to all the places the fish can hide from you on a big river. It could have been this mild frustration that caused us to miss the signs of impending doom in the form of a classic late summer Virginia thunderstorm breathing down our necks. At this point it seemed like that movie cliché when the hero (us) thinks he is scaring all the bad guys (the fish), only to realize too late that there is something bigger and more sinister behind him (storm) scaring all the bad guys. It was around this time that the BMW weatherman felt the need to chime in.Once dark clouds entered our peripheral vision, we knew it was time to find some cover and wait it out. And wait it out. And wait it out. Under the trees, one of us pulled out a rain jacket while the other two gave each other that “Wish I brought a rain jacket” look as the bone-jarring thunder nearly shook us off the bank. We watched our canoes fill up with rainwater and passed the time by shivering and discussing the typical fishing-trip subjects: what GORP actually stands for (inconclusive), schemes for getting rich (conclusively bad), and when the rain was going to stop (exactly one hour from now it turned out).By the time the rain let up and the thunder wore itself out, there was little daylight left to dry our bodies or find a campsite so we were back on the paddles in short order. No time for casting as we compared the actual river to our soggy map of the river looking for suitable places to pitch our tents. We decided the spot with the burned baby doll hanging from a noose was probably not the best choice, but we eventually found a semi-good rocky beach that would do in a pinch, and, by God, we were in a pinch. As I pulled my bedding out of my not-as-dry-as-I-thought bag, I realized I was in for a long, damp night.Jimmy Zunka works a seam early in the trip.With no fish to sacrifice to the camping gods, we were forced to fall back on Protein Plan B for our burritos: ranchero beans. This would have dire consequences on our olfactory systems, especially when we gathered around our quickly deteriorating map to figure out where we were and how long we had to go tomorrow. After much debate and civilized discourse we came to the conclusion that, yes, we were still on the James River. Turns out we had blown past our intended stopping point by about five or six miles.Putting this behind us, we soon settled into watching the moon dance with the wispy clouds and listening to the water play its tune across the river valley. It was very sublime and reminded us why we took this trip in the first place. Sure, we hadn’t caught many fish, our camp was not ideal, and our gear was a little soggy, but our bellies were full and we were embracing our natural surroundings in the purest form. We were on the side of a beautiful river, contemplating life and celebrating friendship. It was very peaceful and comforting, until the first train came screeching through our campsite. Well, not exactly through, but close enough to feel the wind coming off the tracks that, in our haste to settle down for the night, we had failed to notice. The next morning, over eggs and cowboy coffee you had to chew instead of drink, we all recounted bolting upright from one of 15 30-minute naps to make sure we had not accidentally set up camp directly on the tracks of this 1,000-decibel train.Given the events of the trip, it was a relief to awake to our canoes still firmly planted on the bank. If they had floated away during the night, I would not have been all that surprised. One look at the water though and we knew that the hopes and dreams of catching fish – any fish, one fish – were dashed. An already swollen river had been blown out by the same storm that sent us scurrying for the riverbank the previous day, rendering my entire supply of poppers obsolete – and by entire box of poppers, I mean my entire fly supply as I had brought nothing but poppers. Smart move.So, it turns out that having no idea how far down river we were was a blessing in disguise as we were that much closer to the takeout, the end of this train wreck of a fishing trip. We stashed the rods and paddled for Glasgow, only stopping once to check out a rope swing and salvage the trip with some classic river fun. Alas, the swing must have been hung by the same guy as the doll because the physics were off, and each attempt ended with impact on the downswing, which is not the way it’s supposed to work. That was the last straw.Except that it wasn’t. At Glasgow, we missed the takeout and had to portage the Maury rapids, dragging our canoes up twin waterfalls to the boat ramp, nearly flipping them in the process.And so concluded the worst fishing trip I’ve ever been on. Sure, I’ve been on trips where I got wet and cold, didn’t catch any fish, had nightmares, and been heckled from the river bank, but usually not all at once. But here’s the thing: we were still on a fishing adventure. We were still out there on our own, making decisions. Yes, they were not life and death, and they turned out to be bad ones, but there is a certain sense of self worth and accomplishment when you get yourself back to the car in one soggy depressed piece. If everything had gone right, there would be no story to tell, no hook, no lasting memory. Now, I’ll have a tale I’m sure will grow over time to include lightning strikes, raging rapids, us cracking the GORP code, and many, many fish because if we are honest with ourselves, reality is just the starting point for a good fish story.scott-smally-2-1024x765Tips for Catching Smallmouth Bass on the FlySmallmouth bass are a great gamefish due to their hard fight, large size, year-round availability, and aggressive topwater takes. Here in the Southeast, the bronzeback is the top warm water species to target and are prevalent in most rivers and streams. Despite their assets, the smallmouth is often overlooked as a gamefish on the fly as most serious bass fishermen head for lakes and most serious river anglers head for trout streams. Fishing big rivers for smallies is the best of both, so here’s what you’ll need.Rod: 8-9 foot, 6-8 wt depending on the line you are using: bigger rod (8 wt) for sinking line, lighter rod (6-7 wt) for floating with 7-9 foot 2-3x leaders.Flies: For summer topwater action poppers, divers, gugglers, and sneaky pete patterns in a variety of colors are best. Crayfish, clousers, helgramite, wooly buggers, sculpin, and baitfish patterns are prime for early spring, fall, and winter fishing.smally-wiggle-minnowHabitat: Smallmouth bass behave very much like big river brown trout, staying deep during the colder months and coming to the surface once the water temperatures rise, so choose your flies seasonally. Like largemouth bass, they love structure, so target sunken boulders, logs, and other debris, along with riffles, undercut banks, and back eddies.Five Other Smallmouth RiversNew River (WV, VA, NC)The New River has the distinction of being a world-class smallmouth bass fishery in three states: North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. Once the New gets into Virginia and West Virginia, it turns into trophy water with bigger fish, but with lower numbers. The New is considered one of the top fisheries in the country. Hot tip: New River smallies love a silent bug on top.French Broad River (N.C.)Big water equals big fish and the French Broad has them. There are over 40 miles of prime smallmouth habitat on the French Broad as it flows from Brevard, through Asheville, and into Tennessee.Holston River (TN)This tailwater is a favorite for anglers seeking big brown trout, but it is also a great smallmouth bass fishery, especially during the summer months when the trout get stressed. Watch the dam flows and bring a boat as riverside access is limited.Shenandoah (VA)One of the prettiest rivers in the East, if not the country, the Shenandoah has two forks that cut the Shenandoah Valley. This river has had some issues with spawning years past, but is bouncing back. Both the South and North forks are quality “numbers” fisheries, but there are also big fish to be had. The North Fork also holds a healthy habitat of largemouth bass.Youghiogheny (PA)The Yough is known for its population of brown trout, but it is also a great place to target smallmouth, especially during peak summer. The section just below Casselman River is the most productive.last_img read more

FARC and street gangs displace millions of Colombians

first_img Organized crime activities Battling organized crime The FARC and most other Colombian organized crime groups to not engage in international drug trafficking on their own, security analysts said. But some of these groups form partnerships with Mexican transnational criminal organizations which traffic drugs on a global scale, said Juan Carlos Garzón Vergara, a security analyst who studies security issues in the Americas. Some Colombian gangs and paramilitary groups form alliances with the Sinaloa Cartel, which is led by fugitive kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, and Los Zetas, the security analyst said. “There is evidence that Mexican criminal factions have given financial and logistical support to emerging Colombian gangs competing for control of the business. Such is the case of the role played by the Sinaloa Cartel in the dispute between the Rastrojos and the Urabeños,” Garzón Vergara explained. Violence caused by fighting between rival organized crime groups, including street gangs and transnational drug trafficking organizations, is responsible for much of the displacement, according to the UNHCR. Criminal organizations also caused displacement by threatening communities, forcing teenagers and young men to join their groups, and pressuring people to engage in illicit activities, such as illegal mining. Most of the displacement occurred in the departments of Narino, Cauca, Valle del Cauca, Cordoba, and Antioquia, the UNHCR found. But there were increasing levels of displacement in cities as well. For example, some people were forced to leave their neighbourhoods in Medellin and Buenaventura to escape violence between rival gangs. The amount of land left behind by displaced Colombians could reach 6 million hectares, according to the report “The Risk of Returning Home: Violence and Threats against Displaced People Reclaiming Land in Colombia,” by Human Rights Watch. By Dialogo November 05, 2013 Much of the displacement has been caused by the aggressiveness of organized crime groups which seek to take over villages and even parts of urban areas in order to further their illegal enterprises, said Daniel Mauricio Rico, a security analyst at the National University of Colombia. While there are other reasons why so many Colombians have been displaced, “power that gives one the control of the land” is the primary reason, Rico said. The organized crime groups which are responsible for much of the displacement include the Norte del Valle Cartel, a transnational criminal organization that emerged after the breakup of the infamous Cali Cartel; the Urabenos, a violent drug trafficking organization; Los Rastrojos, another transnational criminal organization. Leftist guerrilla organizations responsible for displacement include the National Liberation Army (ELN), a group which allies itself with Mexican drug cartels and engages in kidnapping and extortion; the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), which has been fighting the government for five decades; and the Aguilas Negras, a paramilitary group known for drug trafficking and killing and threatening journalists and human rights activists. Government initiatives As they help victims of displacement, Colombian security forces are continuing to battle organized crime. The Colombian Army Every day, security forces round up more guerrillas. On Oct. 19, 2013, Colombian Army soldiers captured six FARC rebels, including Freddy Chona Payares, who is known as “Freddy Chiapas.” Freddy Chiapas is suspected of being the head of security for FARC leader Timoleon Jimenez, who is also known as “Timochenko.” Army soldiers captured Freddy Chiapas and the other suspects during an operation in Norte de Santander, authorities said. Freddy Chiapas and the other five FARC suspects were allegedly gathering coca paste, which drug traffickers process to produce cocaine. During the operation, Army soldiers also seized four handguns, 51 rounds of ammunition, eight kilograms of cocaine paste, and several cellphones. Displaced by violence Colombia is the country with the highest number of internally displaced people in the world, according to a report by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC). Most of the displacement is attributable to organized crime violence and threats, authorities said. Colombia has 4.9 million displaced people, according to the IDMC report. Violent organized crime groups are responsible for most of the displacement, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR). There were 137 mass displacements in Colombia in 2012, which displaced more than 9,000 Colombians, according to the UNHCR. A transnational challenge Colombian security forces have strengthened their presence in many of the regions where the level of displacement is the highest, such as in the Valle del Cauca and certain sections of Medellin, according to authorities. Sending security forces to areas where organized crime groups are active should help prevent further displacements, authorities said. In some regions, security forces are coordinating their efforts with the International Red Cross to provide emergency shelter and food. Some displacement victims are turning to the country’s judicial system for help. For example, in early 2013, five families who had been displaced by paramilitaries invoked the Law of Victims and Land Restitution Law. The law has been in place since January 2012. The judge granted the families 8,408 hectares of land which had been taken by paramilitaries. Under the law, the land will be returned to the victims through the Colombian Institute for Rural Development (Incoder). It’s quite possible that the revolutionary men from decades ago had very fundamental causes that were not satisfied by the government…just as it happens in my community. The situation in this country is a bit confusing, there are no real, firm, serious and completely responsible words, they say that peace is a fact, then they say that they will make peace with abandonment, but not surrender their arms. I ask everyone, if there is abandonment but no surrender, what will happen next??? They will apply the Colombian laws about what happened but no one will pay or answer for it, everybody says I am immune and they can’t put me in jail. Colombians, look before getting into something… Better for the unknown… The law must be applied to them as it should.There are many people infiltrated, the same thing can happen to us. This is all very sad, so many people have to leave everything behind to protect their lives while knowing that the only goal of the FARC is to protect the coca plantations and distribute it all over the world. These governments are so useless and toady. Sixty years of war are the best proof that guerrillas (FARCs, ELN) have a great social foundation. Guerrillas without a social foundations disappear (the case of Che in Bolivia). The army, the police and the paramilitary dedicated themselves to destroying the social foundation of the guerrilla and to initiating the displacement of the peasant population, with two objectives in mind: take away the guerrilla’s social foundation and seize the lands occupied by the displaced peasants. We need more news about what’s going on in Venezuela since television doesn’t communicate anything. Thousands of Venezuelans would be grateful, amen. I completely agree with this comment The “social basis” is not always connected to the guerrillas by conviction or because they see in them a liberating political project. For sixty years, The Colombian guerrillas have also fed off the fear of those sectors that they vowed to represent, especially when they turned their rifles and war strategies against them: against peasants, indigenous people, ethnic groups and the vulnerable civil sectors. There is a need to know the Colombian reality on-site in order to understand, far beyond the ingenuity or the ideology, the drama of the conflict and the unmeasured criminality of its actors; state entities, yes. But also the guerrillas that long ago perverted the whole society and political alternative project. It’s a country where crime has become a habit, it’s difficult to eradicate it without a strong structured political will free of political nuances. It’s obvious that the power struggles between one and the other are instinctive, and they will not stop because everyone wants more power in order to keep ruling. It’s necessary that the military forces of the countries involved intervene. This is how journalism should be, one that is beneficial to the nation. It is necessary to work for a safe and healthy environment for all the people affected by these life situations of insurgency, organized crime, paramilitary, gangs; but also that the mafias who process and deal psychotropic substances (drugs that are harmful for the mental health and families) contribute to ceasing or minimizing their illicit activities. Anyways, it is necessary to fully rehabilitate everyone who is participating in these acts that generate conflict and harm in general to life itself. When are you going to catch the “democratic” politicians and the high-rank military officials involved with the mafia and drugs? There is no social foundation, there is an economic foundation sustained by drug trafficking. The FARCs and the ELN have distorted social proclamations, and have turned into kidnappers, extortionists and narcs who filled the country with antipersonnel mines, recruited minors and lost the historical opportunity to fight for the vindication of the Colombian people. The civil population is the main victim of their excesses, such as blowing up the pipelines. Well I like this article, have more projects like this so that there can be peace in all countries. God bless you. Let there be peace in Colombia, but with a significant development in socialism. I can’t understand how some leaders in our countries (Colombia -Venezuela-Ecuador) preach about PEACE, keep the population in check, and meet in Cuba to talk (a fox in charge of the hen-house). Cuba is guerrilla number one in Latin America and meanwhile in Colombia they kill, abduct, manage drug trafficking and wash their hands, and the government covers for them. In Venezuela they ask for PEACE talks and they shoot directly at students and the people, and censure information, in Ecuador politicians are pursued and information is restricted, can you talk about PEACE in these circumstances, where the ones guilty of committed crimes go unpunished. It can’t be. I am not an expert in Economics and Politics, but in order to put an end to displacing Colombians I think the following have to happen: first, the right wing has to recognize the left-wing politicians, the country belongs to everyone and not to only one political group. This will gain the deserved respect for everyone, the country cannot be happy when the only decisions that rule are those of the minorities. As far as the drugs go, the Government should try to support agriculture, so that farmers become more interested in cultivating food rather than coca leaves, because of the benefits generated by the crops production, with no legal issues. DEATH PENALTY SHOULD BE APPLIED TO ALL THE DRUG LORDS AND ALL THEIR ALLIES, TO THOSE WHO CULTIVATE AND PROCESS THE DRUGS. ALSO THE ELECTRIC CHAIR. Without a commentator… If drug trade is not legalized in some way, the violence generated by the guerrilla, crime and corruption will increase… Miguel This is due to the lousy government led by President Juan Manuel Santos, who has given the terrorists free reign to carry out these crimes. The president is currently fighting for the FARC to get organized into political groups in order to pardon them for the millions of crimes they have committed so that they can freely take over the whole country without receiving any punishment. Under these conditions, in no time this will become a communist country led by the Castro brothers in Cuba, as bad as or worse than Venezuela. This is because any interest by the Colombian narcotics police would make them loose seats, and participation in large businesses and thousands of companies financed by drug trafficking money would suffer. Here in Colombia, the interests of the ordinary people don’t concern them and, as a result, we see the daily displacement and extreme poverty of the invisible neighborhoods “where the queen doesn’t visit”. This explains why the free-trade agreement has a preference for foreign investments from large corporations, even if the peasants die poor without having the chance to cultivate the land that was taken from them or abandoned as a result of the restrictions imposed on them. Where are the international human rights organizations? Another pathetic case is that of the assassinations being committed in the great port of Buenaventura, where residents are murdered and harassed and, if they oppose, are dismembered alive to scare those who refuse to leave. What name can be given to these less-than-human crimes? And all this because they want access to the land in order to expand the port where products that even Colombians have no access to are imported? Please! THE FARC?? IT’S A FARCE THAT THEY ARE INVOLVED IN PEACE TALKS WHILE THEY CONTINUE KILLING INNOCENT PEOPLE, PLACING MINES THAT BREAK LEGS, AND NOW THEY WANT TO RULE. THEY ARE DRUG TRAFFICKERS, THE WORST KIND OF SCUM, AND THEY ARE EXPRESSING THEIR OPINIONS ON WHAT IS HAPPENING IN COLOMBIA WHEN THEY HAVE NO RIGHT TO ANYTHING. MURDERERS. Corruption is displacing Colombian peasants. The rest is bullshit. IT’S IMPORTANT TO KNOW ALL THE THINGS THAT HAVE BEEN PUBLISHED, AT LEAST WE ARE NOT IGNORANT, AS MANY VENEZUELANS WHO LIVE WITHOUT SEEING WHAT’S GOING ON IN VENEZUELA “A DICTATORSHIP” This information keeps us up to date with these criminal organizations and allows us to report them. We need to research more and neutralize them. Of course I like it, it’s very informative. It’s truly sad to see and especially know that the Colombian farmers are being forced at gunpoint to abandon the lands they obtained and got to produce with so much effort. And this is not all, now they have to pay many fees so that the state return the land to them, one does the work and the other enjoys the fruit of labor. An administration with a lot of guts should come to power and put an end to all these scumbags, the way Fujimori did with the Shining Path. It’s a universal embarrassment. And those capos form the FARC are trying to seize power with complete impunity. Double embarrassment. The government should eliminate the FARCs. The generalized corruption, the exploitation of workers, the health industry and the strong inequality serve as breeding grounds for these evils. So the FARCs capos are gathered in Cuba with the Castro brothers capos, talking about peace and freedom… You are kidding me. I will see Colombia being ruled by the FARCs, like Venezuela and other Latin American countries. That fake Cuban ideology is dragging a lot of fanatics to these lands. These little right-center-wing governments are a bunch of creeps paying homage to Cuba not to say kissing their…It’s a shame that Uribe’s work is being destroyed and the only thing they do is suck up to the FARCs and the Cubans. Actually, the guy resembles a Venezuelan, is it that Cuban, Venezuelan and FARCs is the same thing? I would not invest in Colombia because as far as I’m concerned the same catastrophe that occurred in Venezuela will happen here. Work for your people and dedicate some time to the social matters of poor people, give them tools to grow, first-class public education and comprehensive care for families. Then the FARCs won’t be able to convince them that they are wonderful. Keep in mind the example of Venezuela, the biggest political scam of the hemisphere. It’s the bitter reality that we are living in our beloved and beautiful country, Colombia. These are necessary: 1) Proper legislation 2) Control of the entire community in all matters related to organized crime 3) Technological equipment to move faster and more efficiently than the delinquents. 4) Filter the government officials in all areas and apply exemplary sentences 5) Control of all the weapons in the hands of civilians 6) Permanent advertisement campaigns against drugs and active, preventive participation of all the education departments. There is no doubt that the FARCs will always remain connected with organized crime, since one of the clauses is precisely to stay in the environment that has provided them with a lot of money and power during some of the democratic governments. The freedom movements such as the FARCs cannot be labeled as criminal organizations. In our country we had a war and the FMLN, which started as a guerrilla force, is now the government. Not only the guerrilla but the war itself are responsible for the abandonment of the lands. Those who don’t want to be involved in the war or who are too vulnerable leave the conflict zones, it’s natural. Colombia has always been a country where drug trafficking has set the rules, just look at the Medellin Cartel, the Cali Cartel, Pablo Escobar, the paramilitary killing young people age and making them look like guerrilla. Conceptions change when the winners are the ones in the government, Mujica in Uruguay was the leader of the Tupamaros, in a government where the oligarch rules the fight of the people and considers it subversive. Falling in the trap of the media that profiles and puts ideas and concepts in the minds of the public is equivalent to not thinking for oneself but be a spokesmen for what the oligarchy wants people to think.- I don’t really understand the problem with our brotherly and beloved country, Colombia:They complain about the FARCs, the PARAMILITARIES, the BACRIN and of everything else which is actually a lot, and all the things that happen to our brothers are regrettable.But what I don’t understand is why, with so much pain caused by the PARAMILITARIES and the BACRIN, they keep voting for them.Here you have a very clear fact about the drug trafficker listed as No. 82 by the CIA; or better said, the Lord of the Shadows, Alvaro Uribe, who was just appointed Senator, again.I don’t understand it and I may never do, and I suffer for my Colombian brothers. THE GOOD ONES ARE GOOD. I like reading your comments. They are important and I’m interested in them, thanks.Paola. I think this outlook on the social situation in Colombia is excellent, because not only does it inform but it generates criteria diversity for the benefit of all. This leads me to conclude that there are three possible scenarios for what will happen in Venezuela: A revolutionary government that will continue being deaf and incapable; a military government and an incapable government from the opposition. And adding to it, is the interference and incitement of third parties. From what I can see, this will probably happen, it would be unfortunate because America would catch fire.last_img read more

Academy, FMA square off over amendments

first_imgAnother AFTL amendment would give patients the right to see adverse incident reports relating to doctors and health care facilities they use, including those that could cause injury or death. The ballot title is “Patients’ Right to Know About Adverse Medical Incidents.” The ballot summary reads: “Current Florida law restricts information available to patients related to investigations of adverse medical incidents, such as medical malpractice. This amendment would give patients the right to review, upon request, records of health care facilities’ or providers’ adverse medical incidents, including those which could cause injury or death. Provides that patients’ identities should not be disclosed.”Justice Wells said he is concerned that voters reading the summary would be led to believe the amendment gives patients the right to review records of health care facilities “and that would leave the connotation that it is the health care facility that I was at, as opposed to it just opening it up to the world.”McLendon responded that, combined with the title, the summary makes it clear that “we are talking about consumer information and that it is meant more broadly than simply the acquisition of your own records.”“Why didn’t they simply say that then?” Wells asked. “Why didn’t they simply say.. . ‘all medical records are public,’ period? And that is what it says, right?’McLendon contended “the average voters of reasonable intelligence” will understand the chief purpose of the amendment is to make medical records available.Justice Peggy Quince asked who determines if the records being sought are adverse records.“This tracks the Patients’ Bill of Rights in the Florida Statutes, and in the Patients’ Bill of Rights it explains the type of incidents that would be adverse medical incidents, and our summary also makes it clear when it speaks about incidents such as would cause injury or death,” McLendon said.Wells, however, said nowhere in the amendment is the Patients’ Bill of Rights mentioned.McLendon noted the amendment also does not call for the creation of new records, just making records that already exist available to patients.Harold R. Mardenborugh of Tallahassee, representing the Florida Dental Association, attacked the proposed amendment, saying it should be stricken because it would substantially impact more than one branch of government.“The most fundamental impact is that it will effectively overrule the work product privilege that this court has put in place,” Mardenborugh said.“But isn’t that what all constitutional amendments do — override some pre-existing law in virtually every case?” Chief Justice Anstead asked.“This requires only the disclosure of that which is already collected as a matter of law,” said Jon Mills, representing Floridians for Patient Protection. “This is a simple amendment directed to overruling an exemption.”Same Fee July 1, 2004 Managing Editor Regular News Academy, FMA square off over amendments One of the AFTL’s amendments would amend the constitution to bar licensure of any physician found to have committed three or more incidents of malpractice. The ballot title reads “Public Protection from Repeated Medical Malpractice.” The ballot summary states: “Current law allows medical doctors who have committed repeated malpractice to be licensed to practice medicine in Florida. This amendment prohibits medical doctors who have been found to have committed three or more incidents of medical malpractice from being licensed to practice medicine in Florida.”Justice Charles Wells asked if that meant that if a doctor who had three “friendly suits” go to judgment 40 years ago and had no subsequent malpractice incidents would lose his or her license if the amendment passed. And in contrast, if a doctor who settled three malpractice cases in 1990s, without going to judgment, would be allowed to continue to practice.“That is correct, your honor,” said Timothy McLendon of Gainesville, representing Floridians for Patient Protection. He added that the measure is intended to remove discretion from the state agency that deals with licensing doctors and conceded, “it may inflict some hardship on certain people.”Justice Wells noted the ballot summary says doctors “who have been found to have committed three or more incidents” of malpractice would lose their license.“I think I would reasonably believe that, if a doctor settled three cases for $1 million each, that that person would be covered by this amendment,” Wells said. “But he is not.”That’s the point, said Tallahassee’s Stephen Grimes, a former justice representing the FMA, who argued the summary is misleading.“The voters could not conceive of the fact that maybe his family doctor is going to get disenfranchised,” Grimes said.McLendon said in order for past cases to count against doctors today, those old cases must meet the current definition of malpractice and, if passed, the measure would only apply to a “minuscule” number of doctors.Patients’ Right to Know The FMA’s proposed amendment is titled “The medical liability claimant’s compensation amendment.” The ballot summary states: “Proposes to amend the State Constitution to provide that an injured claimant who enters into a contingency fee agreement with an attorney in a claim for medical liability is entitled to no less than 70 percent of the first $250,000.00 in all damages received by the claimant, and 90 percent of damages in excess of $250,000.00, exclusive of reasonable and customary costs and regardless of the number of defendants. This amendment is intended to be self-executing.”Justice Fred Lewis noted the ballot summary doesn’t reflect “that citizens of Florida may not be able to obtain counsel and have access to court because you’re going to limit it in such a fashion that no one will become involved in these kinds of cases, which is really the underlying purpose here, it seems.”Grimes responded: “I submit that’s an argument that could be made. But on a facial assertion of that, I don’t think it would be such that would be cognizable in this case.”Grimes said the amendment would benefit clients because it will allow them to keep more of the recovery.But Chief Justice Harry Lee Anstead said it also could be argued that it doesn’t benefit claimants at all “because now they may not be able to find counsel to represent them in these cases because of this compensation limitation. Is that not an alternative argument?”“I think it is an argument that you could present to the voters if it gets on the ballot,” Grimes said.Buddy Jacobs, representing the Bar’s Trial Lawyers Section — which is made up of both plaintiff and defense lawyers — said the amendment is “almost seductive” in the way it is worded.“We are on behalf of claimants; we want to make sure claimants get this amount of money and that amount of money,” Jacobs said. “But still you’re restricting the rights of the claimants or the persons who are the victims of malpractice; you’re restricting their rights to pay lawyers. Well, the folks that aren’t here today are going to see this on the ballot, and they’re going to say, ‘Well gosh, this is wonderful.’ It is almost seductive, says we are going to guarantee people to have these kinds of percentages and recovery. Doesn’t talk about whether they can pay their lawyer, hire their lawyer, or how much they get paid.”Mills contended the amendment violates the single subject provision and that the ballot and title are substantially misleading.“I don’t think there is any dispute that this amendment supercedes and affects totally for the future the area of medical malpractice and perhaps other things.. . ,” Mills said. “It also has effects in areas such as, potentially, comparative liability, joint and several liability. There are some broad potential impacts. The most important impact is I think the impact on the court.”Mills said the most dangerous precedent would be for the court to approve an amendment which has declared itself self-executing because Art. V, Sec. I, states that the courts operate the judiciary. The third AFTL-proposed amendment would require doctors to charge the same rate for the same services for all patients and is titled “Physician Shall Charge the Same Fee for the Same Health Care Service to Every Patient.” The ballot summary states:“Current law allows a physician to charge different prices for the same health care provided to different patients. This amendment would require a physician to charge the same fee for the same health care service, procedure or treatment. Requires lowest fee which physician has agreed to accept. Doesn’t limit physician’s ability to provide free services. A patient may review the physician’s fee and similar information before, during, or after the health care is provided.”“I guess the question is whether, if a physician charges certain patients $1,000 for a service but ends up accepting from some patients, after the invoice goes out, accepting $800 for that service from one patient, does he then have to accept $800 from other patients, or can he accept more or less, as long as the invoice says $1,000 for everyone?” asked Justice Raoul Cantero.McLendon said the question hits at the prime problem that amendment is intended to address: “The practice of cost shifting, under which physicians discriminate between patients, in terms of allocating the cost, the changing of the fee for their services, and, yes, this amendment is intended to stop that practice.”“So if a physician accepts from Medicare, reimbursement that some may argue is less than the cost of providing that service, this would require a physician to accept the Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement schedule for all services rendered, regardless of the client’s ability to pay?” Justice Kenneth Bell asked.To which McLendon responded: “The doctors would have absolute ability to value their services. Once they have done so, in a context, whether it be Medicare or somewhere else, they could not charge anyone else a lower fee.”Bell, however, noted the individual physician does not set Medicaid or Medicare reimbursement rates, but are instead required to accept the reimbursement rate established by the government.“There is a rate that is set,” McLendon said. “But the participation by doctors is voluntary.”“So they would have to choose not to participate in Medicare or Medicaid if they did not want to be bound by this amendment, correct?” Bell asked.“If that rate was too small, then that would be one of the choices they could make,” McLendon said.Justice Peggy Quince also noted the amendment says nothing about HMOs or other third-party payers.Malpractice Fees Academy, FMA square off over amendments Mark D. Killian Managing Editor The Florida Supreme Court heard oral arguments in what Justice Barbara Pariente described as “tit for tat” proposed constitutional amendments being advanced by the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers and the Florida Medical Association.The academy has proposed three amendments, being sponsored by its political committee Floridians for Patient Protection. One would revoke the license of any doctor who loses three malpractice or disciplinary judgments; the second would give patients access to confidential peer reviews and adverse incident reports (which now are immune even from subpoenas); and the third would require doctors to charge the same rate for the same services for all patients.Working through its political committee – Citizens for a Fair Share – the FMA’s proposed amendment would limit how much money lawyers can make in a medical liability case.Over two days of arguments June 7-8, the court reviewed each of the four amendments to ensure that they do not contain more than one subject, and that the ballot title and summary accurately reflect the content of the amendment.Late on the second day of arguments, Justice Pariente marveled that the lawyers involved advanced the same arguments on consecutive days, depending on whose amendment was before the court. Each side represented their amendments as simple and straightforward while characterizing the other’s as ambiguous or misleading.“I am having trouble distinguishing the argument today from the argument yesterday, as far as this seems like four amendments that are going to perhaps cause a great deal of litigation if they are passed,” Pariente said.Three Strikeslast_img read more

Trump tells lies while basking in the praise

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Donald Trump was cheered by hundreds of Carrier workers a year ago when he announced that he saved their jobs from moving to Mexico (Daily Gazette, Dec. 3).The same workers now know that they were conned by Trump with promises he had no intention of fulfilling. Carrier announced the laying off of 600 workers whose jobs Trump claimed to have saved a year ago. Instead of saving jobs, “more than 91,000 jobs have been sent overseas since Trump was elected, the highest number of jobs lost to outsourcing in five years.”Trump’s entire career consists of lying and conning people with false promises, including the Trump University students who were encouraged to take loans to pay tuition for a degree that turned out to be useless. He stiffed contractors and workers who worked on his properties.Trump had no plans to save the Carrier jobs. Trump has an insatiable need for adulation. He made the promises to the Carrier workers for the applause and cheers he knew he would receive when he stood in front of them to con them with false promises.Mark MarkovitzNiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?last_img read more

US pushes arms sales surge to Taiwan, needling China: Sources

first_imgTaiwan’s military is well-trained and well-equipped with mostly US-made hardware, but China has a huge numerical superiority and is adding advanced equipment of its own.The weapons packages from Lockheed Martin Co, Boeing and General Atomics are moving their way through the export process, three people familiar with the status of the deals on Capitol Hill said, and a notification to Congress is expected within weeks.One industry source said President Donald Trump was slated to be briefed on the packages this week by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Some of the deals had been requested by Taiwan more than a year ago, but are only now being moved through the approval process. A State Department spokesman declined comment.A senior US official, citing Chinese assertiveness in the Taiwan Strait, said: “There is no equilibrium today. It is out of balance. And I think that is dangerous.”Trump’s White House has made an effort to export weapons to US allies trying to bolster their defenses, decrease dependence on US troops while boosting US companies and jobs.As he fights for re-election on Nov. 3, Trump and Republican supporters have ramped up their rhetoric against Beijing and sought to portray Democratic opponent Joe Biden as soft on China.Other factors include Taiwan’s bigger defense budget, and the fear in Taiwan that if Trump loses, Biden would be less willing to sell the US’s most advanced weapons to them.Taiwan’s interest in US weapons and equipment is not new. The island is bolstering its defenses in the face of what it sees as increasingly threatening moves by Beijing, such as regular Chinese air force and naval exercises near Taiwan.The senior US official said Taiwan’s increased defense spending was a good step, but it had to do more.”Taiwan, frankly, needs to do more in order to ensure that they indigenously have an ability to deter Chinese aggression,” the official said.DealsDrones that can see over the horizon for surveillance and targeting, coupled with advanced missiles and coastal defenses that include smart mines and anti-submarine capabilities to impede a sea invasion, have been discussed at the highest levels to make Taiwan more difficult to attack, like a “porcupine”, according to industry and congressional sources.A Lockheed Martin-made High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), essentially a truck-based rocket launcher, is among the weapons Taiwan wants, people familiar with the negotiations said. Taiwan also seeks to buy sophisticated anti-tank missiles.In early August, Reuters reported that Washington is negotiating the sale of at least four of its large sophisticated aerial drones to Taiwan for what could be about $600 million.Also under discussion are land-based Boeing-made Harpoon anti-ship missiles to serve as a coastal defense against cruise missiles.Other systems include “underwater sea mines and other capabilities to deter amphibious landing, or immediate attack,” Taiwan’s de facto ambassador to United States said in July.  At the same time Taiwan’s desire to buy weapons increased after President Tsai Ing-wen was re-elected in January and has made strengthening Taiwan’s defenses a top priority.Taiwan is China’s most sensitive territorial issue. Beijing says it is a Chinese province, and has denounced the Trump administration’s support for the island.Washington has been eager to create a military counterbalance to Chinese forces, building on an effort known within the Pentagon as “Fortress Taiwan”, as Beijing’s military makes increasingly aggressive moves in the region.Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said the reported package was a “media assumption,” and that it handled weapons purchase talks and assessments in a low-key, confidential way, so could not offer public comment until there was a formal US notification of any sales to Congress. The United States plans to sell as many as seven major weapons systems, including mines, cruise missiles and drones to Taiwan, four people familiar with the discussions said, as the Trump administration ramps up pressure on China.Pursuing seven sales at once is a rare departure from years of precedent in which US military sales to the island were spaced out and carefully calibrated to minimize tensions with Beijing.But the Trump administration has become more aggressive with China in 2020 and the sales would land as relations between Beijing and Washington are at their lowest point in decades over accusations of spying, a lingering trade war and disputes about the spread of the novel coronavirus.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac left out of Arsenal squad to face Newcastle United over security fears

first_imgMesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac have been left out of Arsenal’s squad to face Newcastle (Picture: Getty)Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac have been left out of Arsenal’s squad for this weekend’s Premier League fixture against Newcastle United.The Gunners, who finished fifth in the Premier League last term, kick-start their 2019-20 campaign with a trip to St James’ Park on Sunday.Unai Emery will be without midfielder Ozil and defender Kolasinac, however, after the pair were involved in a carjacking attempt by an armed gang in north-west London on July 28.A statement from Arsenal said: ‘Mesut and Sead will not be part of the squad for our opening match against Newcastle following further security incidents which are being investigated by the police.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTMore: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City‘The welfare of our players and their families is always a top priority and we have taken this decision following discussion with the players and their representatives.‘We are liaising with the police and are providing the players and their families with ongoing support.‘We look forward to welcoming the players back to the squad as son as possible. We will not be making any further comment on the matter.’Arsenal looked on course to finish in the top four last season before dropping to fifth, one point below north London rivals Tottenham. Advertisement Comment Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac left out of Arsenal squad to face Newcastle United over security fears Metro Sport ReporterFriday 9 Aug 2019 5:39 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link2.8kShares Ozil and Kolasinac were the victims of an attempted carjacking (Picture: Twitter)Speaking ahead of the new season, Gunners boss emery said: ‘Our ambition is to do the best possible in the all the competitions, the most important of these is the Premier League.‘Our first target is to be in the top four, we reduced the distance last season. Manchester City and Liverpool are stronger than the others at the beginning.‘We want to compete with them and reduced the points gap. Tottenham, Manchester United and Chelsea have the same objectives.‘Last year the difference was really small and the challenge now is for us to achieve a top-four finish.‘Other teams are coming back, signing new players and working very well. The Premier League is the best competition in the world. We are going to work to compete and get into the top four.’More: FootballBruno Fernandes responds to Man Utd bust-up rumours with Ole Gunnar SolskjaerNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira moves Advertisementlast_img read more

“I got overly messy on the weekend and peed my mates bed” Website’s 10 quirkiest requests

first_imgWhen it comes to hiring help, many client requests are without boundaries.WHEN it comes hiring a little help cleaning the home, one online services directory revealed some of their users have few boundaries. Hipages.com.au connects clients to contractors, and with the new season in full swing, they’ve released a list of their 10 quirkiest spring cleaning request.The comments below have been hand-picked by the hipages team from testimonies provided to them by tradies dealing with the site’s customers.They provide an interesting frieze of modern day living — and some are best not read while eating breakfast.Enjoy (if you can): “Approx 180,000 bricks ready to clean” “Regular ironing service with pickup and delivery. This lot is 29 business shirts, 5 slacks, 14 Ts, 13 pillowcases, 1 tablecloth. Please quote based on regular ironing” “My daughter has thrown up on the sofa. I rented a cleaning machine from Bunnings but the smell is still there” More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus1 day agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market1 day ago “I need cleaners for a year 12 after party. Will be needed on the 16th of November” “Looking for a mattress clean. I got overly messy on the weekend and peed my mates bed” “Carpet cleaning — pet urine cleaning required. Walls, kitchen, etc.” “Need lounge room carpet cleaned, not badly stained just has a pet odour — only noticeable if you are lying on the carpet” “We have a cream coloured carpet. Most of the carpet is in good condition, just a few wine spills and some puppy wee stains that need to be out. I have tried my hardest to scrub them but we need it looking good before October” “I need a floor cleaning, like a bond clean but we still are living in it. Or it is a spring clean?” “My old dog had an accident on a 2 month old queen mattress. Wee” Follow Kieran Clair on Twitter at @kieranclairlast_img read more