Crowd builds up for Hunters and Devils match

first_imgIt is expected to a big turnout here with supporters still making their way into the stadium as the clock ticks down for kick off at 6.30pm.The match will be televised live on TV Wan Sports HD.A curtain raiser between Port Moresby Rugby League competition teams Brothers and Tarangau is currently underway.last_img

Agriculture Can Develop Liberia’

first_imgLiberian cocoa farmers have stressed the important role agriculture can play in the country’s development agenda if the sector is prioritized by the government and its numerous partners. The farmers noted that the sector has the potential to make Liberia one of the emerging developing countries, with massive job creation. The farmers, who just returned from a week-long knowledge acquiring field trip to Ghana, said Liberia has not acquired the high level economic transformation that it desires because it has neglected the agriculture sector.Speaking at a press conference in Monrovia upon their arrival from Ghana yesterday, a representative of the group, Erastus Borkuah, said when given the desired attention, the sector, especially cocoa production, can build Liberia as it has done in Ghana.The trip was an initiative of Wienco Liberia Limited (WLL), a leading supplier of fertilizer and other agricultural inputs which has been operating in Liberia since 2011. Though it is a business venture, the company provides farmers with essential supplies and advisory services throughout the cocoa season.The cocoa farmers became the latest group to echo this sentiment after their week-long trip to that country where they had the opportunity to be part of the Ghana Cocoa producers’ annual festival known as the Annual General Meeting (AGM). The AGM was organized by the Cocoa Abrabopa Association of Ghana and held at Asankragwa in the Western Region of that country.Mr. Borkuah said what the team saw in Ghana is very great, noting that this can also be emulated here if only the Liberian government is willing to prioritize agriculture.“What we saw in that country is unbelievable. Agriculture, especially cocoa farming is indeed the spin of the Ghanaian economy,” Mr. Borkuah said.“Even the Bible tells us that humans learn from each other just as ‘iron sharpens iron’ so our trip was indeed rewarding. We saw things that are motivating us as cocoa farmers, but the unfortunate thing is that our leaders are not willing to do the level of investments that we saw out there.“This trip was successful because we learned new things that we have come to apply here. The people told us that it is agriculture that built their country and I believe we can also do the same here.”He said that they visited some farms, many of which are very large compared to farms here, and had fruitful discussions with the farmers. They also visited the Cocoa Research Center (CRC), which he called on the Liberian government to establish here.“We need a research center where we can do some of our technical work to alleviate some of the problems we face as farmers,” he said. “Ghana has really developed and this is because of the way they have prioritized agriculture. Cocoa farmers are building mansions in that country while we sit in abject poverty here because our government has decided to blatantly ignore the potential of agriculture.”He said with the requisite financial and technical support farmers can do more in Liberia. “We want to follow our Ghanaian counterparts’ footprints,” he said.“If we can just get a quarter of the support our colleagues are getting in Ghana, we farmers in this country can develop Liberia beyond recognition.” Wienco senior agronomist, Eric Asante Antwi said the trip was the second of its kind after an initial group of farmers returned from that country a year ago.He noted that when Wienco came to Liberia in 2011 they realized that import usage was at zero level and even now with the four years experience, it is still at this level.“We need to take our farmers around after giving them the technical knowledge. We have levels of learning. Some believe that when they see it they can copy and some like to touch or feel it,” he said.Mr. Antwi said that the trip was organized to share the Ghanaian experience with some of the farmers in Liberia.“We went there and had a five day knowledge impacting experience in Ghana, especially during the AGM,” he said.Meanwhile, cocoa farmers across the country have adopted, and many more will adopt, an initiative by Wienco Liberia Limited, which promises to see a significant upsurge in their yield.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Walter Reed scandal may shine spotlight on local VA

first_imgOn Friday, it was packed with movie trailers and tents from crews building sets for a new “Halloween” movie being shot there. I saw more parking spaces reserved for Fox TV producers and employees than for doctors and therapists. Building 5 – the old psych ward, which was deemed unsafe and too costly to fix after the 1994 Northridge Earthquake – now houses half a dozen Fox TV production staffs shooting pilots for next season. The old psych ward seems safe enough for them. Building 4 – a former alcohol and drug ward, and spinal cord injury clinic – is now used mainly as a storage building for film equipment. If our local vets need those services now – or an MRI, CT scan, or any emergency service at all – they have to go over the hill to the West L.A. facility or call 911. “We had a guy collapse in the picnic area a few months ago, and we had to call 911 and wait 20 minutes for him to be taken to a local emergency room,” one of the vets said. Not exactly a ringing endorsement for veteran care when one of your guys collapses at his local VA facility and has to call 911 for help. But the warning signs are right there at the entrance to Sepulveda in big red letters – “No Emergency Services Available.” All the directories and signs for Urgent Care Service, which used to be offered just a few years ago, have been covered with white tape. Things apparently are so financially tight that last year all the facility’s volunteers even had their $4.50 lunch coupons for sandwiches canceled to save a few hundred bucks. Class move. Walking out of the tunnel Thursday with the vets who had invited me, I noticed a sign on Building 22 that said the recreation room would be closed for a week at the end of the month so a movie could be shot inside. “We know these film projects bring money into the VA, but where’s it all going?” one Vietnam vet asked. “It sure isn’t coming back here.” “The Iraqi troops coming home are going to have to fight a bureaucracy we didn’t have to fight as young soldiers coming home,” a World War II vet added. Since 1999, Sepulveda VA has collected more than $2.5 million in film-production fees that were deposited into the medical center’s facilities-appropriation budget, according to Charles Dorman, director of the Department of Veterans Affairs Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. With the added revenue – and Congress increasing the VA’s overall budget by $3billion this fiscal year – you’d think there’d be a few crumbs left over for more services at Sepulveda, the vets say. If there is any good to come out of this Walter Reed debacle, it’s that a national spotlight has now been placed on all VA facilities, the vets say. Maybe now it won’t be so easy for VA gatekeepers to keep the public’s prying eyes out. “Who knows? Maybe the next time you stop by the VA, police won’t have orders to kick you out anymore,” Charley said. I wouldn’t count on it, Charley. Dennis McCarthy’s column appears Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. (818) 713-3749 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “Maybe we should take the tunnel this time,” Charley said with a smile as he looked over at me. The half-dozen Vietnam and World War II vets with us laughed, figuring Charley was right. Using the underground labyrinth of dimly lit, concrete bunkers that connect the old medical buildings at Sepulveda VA would cut the odds that the VA police would spot me and ask me to leave. Again. I get kicked out of the Sepulveda VA a lot these days. I think it has something to do with the columns I’ve written over the years about all the unkept promises, petty decisions and service cutbacks there. I get the feeling VA officials haven’t been thrilled with what I’ve written. They want me to ask for permission to go onto the North Hills facility now, accompanied by one of their damage-control guides. But the way I see it, the only invitation I need is from the vets themselves. The VA was built for them. They paid a big price for it. Still do. If they want me there, I’m there. The shameful, national embarrassment over the care of wounded vets at Walter Reed Army Medical Center made me want to see what our servicemen and -women returning from Iraq can expect if they choose to use the dwindling services left at the North Hills facility. Walking through the tunnel, the vets wanted to make it clear that the Iraq veterans are going to get quality outpatient medical care from some dedicated, overworked doctors, therapists, support personnel and volunteers doing the best they can amid annual staff cutbacks at the facility. They also wanted the Iraq vets to know they’re going to have to share the facility and parking spaces with crews from movies and TV shows such as “Grey’s Anatomy.” The filming trend has Sepulveda looking a lot more like a Hollywood backlot these days than a veterans’ outpatient facility. last_img read more

Under-fire Neville apologises for sexist tweets

first_imgThey included a 2012 post that said: “U women of (sic) always wanted equality until it comes to paying the bills #hypocrites”.In another post that same year, Neville tweeted: “Morning men couple of hours cricket be4 (before) work sets me up nicely for the day.”Asked why he had only referred to men in his message, a reply on Neville’s account said: “When I said morning men I thought the women would of been busy preparing breakfast/getting kids ready/making the beds-sorry morning women!”Neville, 41, appeared to delete his Twitter account after the comments were re-published.– ‘Not a true reflection’ –In a statement issued Wednesday by his employers at England’s Football Association, Neville said: “Following comments made a number of years ago I would like to clarify that they were not and are not a true and genuine reflection of either my character or beliefs, and would like to apologise.“I am fully aware of my responsibilities as the England Women’s head coach and am immensely proud and honoured to have been given the role. I am now looking forward to the future and will work tirelessly to try and help bring success to the team.”Neville has also faced flak for a lack of previous experience coaching in the women’s game, although he has enjoyed brief stints in the backroom staffs of Manchester United, England men’s Under-21s and Spanish club Valencia.The Women’s Sports Trust have questioned his credentials, saying: “We are also saddened by Phil Neville’s historical tweets and the lack of comment about this from the FA.”The WST also highlighted concerns over how the FA had come to select Neville as the successor to Mark Sampson, who was sacked in September over allegations of misconduct in a previous role and amid a racism row that led to widespread criticism of senior FA officials.– ‘Parachuted’ –It said it was “disappointed at the apparent lack of transparency and process in the appointment of Phil Neville as the new manager for the England women’s football team.“Our national women’s team deserve the very best coach available to fulfil their enormous potential and inspire millions of men and women.“To see a high-profile, former professional footballer virtually parachuted into such a significant role in football without the level of experience required, undermines the coaching pathway and will be a blow to hundreds of football coaches, both male and female, currently working towards their badges at all levels.”Chelsea Ladies manager Emma Hayes ruled herself out of the England job contention by signing a new long-term contract with the Women’s Super League side.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000No sooner had the former Manchester United and England defender been named to his new position on Tuesday then old messages from his Twitter handle @fizzer18 re-appeared. Photo/COURTESYLONDON, United Kingdom, Jan 24- Phil Neville apologised on Wednesday for the sexist tweets that have overshadowed his appointment as the new coach of the England women’s football team.No sooner had the former Manchester United and England defender been named to his new position on Tuesday then old messages from his Twitter handle @fizzer18 re-appeared.last_img read more

Is Steven Gerrard’s imminent exit the reason for Liverpool’s poor season?

first_imgBolo Zenden believes Steven Gerrard’s decreasing influence at Liverpool has had a huge impact on the team this season.The Reds skipper has announced he will join LA Galaxy at the end of the season, and former Anfield star Zenden claims the 34-year-old’s departure will leave a huge hole.“There have been some big transitions this year,” he told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast show. “Steven Gerrard is not playing as a regular and that’s had a big impact on the team.“They were very close to winning the league last year and, let’s be honest, they gave it away against Chelsea when they lost at home.“If you put Chelsea and Liverpool’s teams together this season, the quality that Chelsea have is much better than Liverpool.”last_img read more

‘Liverpool won’t win the Premier League now!’ Fans react to sad news

first_img Kolo Toure in action for Liverpool It’s the sad news we all feared was coming: Liverpool are releasing Kolo Toure.The 35-year-old centre-back has been a beast for the Reds over the last three years since joining on a free transfer from Manchester City.Stoic showings against Real Madrid, amongst others, have earned him cult hero status on Merseyside.As a result, some fans have been left devastated and you can see their reaction on Twitter below… 1last_img

Man threatened to burn down house in row over rent money

first_imgA man threatened to burn down his rented home with two cans of petrol in a row over rent.Allan Manabat appeared before Letterkenny District Court following the terrifying incident. Manabat, aged 48, had been living at Willowbrook in Letterkenny for just 10 days before the incident.The accused had threatened to burn down the property belonging to Shaun Patton on November 25th last.He flipped and brought two cans of petrol to the house claiming he was not happy with the accommodation.He was also charged with attacking another tenant at the house, Attiq Ahmad.Solicitor for the accused, Mr Patsy Gallagher, said his client was a technology expert who was from the Philippines but was a German national.He claimed Manabat had been complaining about the noise outside his window for a number of days since he had moved in.The accused, who had no previous convictions, apologised to the court and said he did not know what had come over him.Describing them as serious charges, Judge Paul Kely adjourned the case until June 25th to allow for a Probation Report.Man threatened to burn down house in row over rent money was last modified: May 3rd, 2018 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

49ers report card: How good was George Kittle’s first half?

first_img HERE if you are having a problem viewing the video on a mobile deviceSANTA CLARA — Here is how the 49ers (3-10) graded in Sunday’s 20-14 win over the Denver Broncos (6-7) at Levi’s Stadium:PASS OFFENSE: ASANTA CLARA, CA – DECEMBER 9: San Francisco 49ers’ George Kittle (85) celebrates his first down catch against the Denver Broncos in the first quarter at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group)George …last_img read more

Giants option Dereck Rodriguez to Triple-A again, call Austin Slater back up

first_imgSecond-year pitcher Dereck Rodriguez is headed back to Sacramento as the Giants call up  Austin Slater from Triple-A.Rodriguez has been shuffled around the Giants rotation in a down 2019, sometimes appearing as a long reliever in addition to eight starts. He was also sent down to Sacramento in mid-May before returning to the Giants after a couple weeks.Sunday was Rodriguez’s most recent appearance, giving up three runs in less than an inning of work in the Giants’ 10-4 win over the …last_img read more

Scientists Can Be Inept Philosophers

first_imgAn undergrad philosopher could make mince meat out of some scientists’ claims.They used to be called natural philosophers. Now, oftentimes, “scientists” (a label concocted by William Whewell) learn little about philosophy in their training. Science is supposed to restrict itself to observable, testable phenomena in nature. Like everyone else, though, individual scientists develop strong opinions about things, leading some of them to go far afield of observation. Scientists need to be careful with their pronouncements, because they speak with the presumptive authority of science. Here are some recent news items that illustrate the problem.Will the Great Attractor destroy us? (Live Science). Listed under “Expert Voices,” this article lets astrophysicist Paul Sutter speculate about the fate of the Earth in the far distant future. After discussing observations of the Great Attractor (a massive structure made of clusters of galaxies), he says this:The Great Attractor won’t stay that Great for long. In fact, we’ll never reach it. Before we do, dark energy will rip the Norma Cluster away from us. Clusters will stay like they are, but superclusters will never live up to their names. So take comfort in that: we have nothing to fear from the Great Attractor.Philosophers could point out that Sutter and all his listeners will be long dead before his prophecy could be tested or falsified. That being so, a Socratic gadfly could ask whether his “expert” or “scientific” opinion has any more merit than a given religious apocalypse narrative.Is Earthly Life Premature from a Cosmic Perspective? (Astrobiology Magazine). NASA reprinted this story from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, unquestionably an institution of respectable eggheads (usually). A moment of reflection, however, reveals that no one could possibly know the answer to such a question. Harvard guru Avi Loeb let his assumptions launch him far afield of his observational platform:“If you ask, ‘When is life most likely to emerge?’ you might naively say, ‘Now,’” says lead author Avi Loeb of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. “But we find that the chance of life grows much higher in the distant future.“Once again, Dr. Loeb and his readers will be long gone before his opinion could be tested. So who “naively” stated a claim? See also, which quotes him saying that “alien life will be more common in the far future” (long after he is dead).Belief in a deity helps humans cooperate and live in large groups, studies say (PhysOrg). Philosophers have no patience with self-refuting propositions. Joseph Henrich, Professor of Human Evolutionary Biology, seems oblivious to the fact that he fell into that trap. With his Yoda Complex in full operation, Henrich speculated that natural selection produced cooperation.“We have evolved some basic cognitive abilities that allow us to represent and understand these supernatural beings,” Henrich said. “Cultural evolution can then shape the details of what those gods care about and how powerful they are.”But unless Henrich excludes himself from evolutionary forces by some unnatural (supernatural) ability, his proposition implodes. He himself becomes a product of the blind, aimless forces of evolution. A gadfly could joke that to become the fittest, he should believe in a powerful deity himself—not in evolution.Uncalculating cooperation is used to signal trustworthiness (PNAS). Falling into the same trap, psychologists from Harvard and Yale try to account for the “evolutionary puzzle” of human prosociality (altruism) using evolutionary game theory. But if trustworthiness is a product of blind, amoral forces of selection, on what basis do they assert that their own paper is trustworthy? Unless they can argue how they should be exempted from the inexorable forces of natural evolution, maybe their selfish genes are just playing games with the readers’ credulity.Humans artificially drive evolution of new species (Science Daily). It may be demonstrably true that human beings are causing genetic variations among their fellow creatures. But artificial “anything” involves intelligent design. Unless the evolutionists from the University of Copenhagen can make a distinction between artificial and natural causes of variation, they have no basis for calling the effects “unnatural” — as they do. To be consistent, they would have to state that people are just responding to forces of natural selection that produced humans. Consequently, they lose any foundation of moral urgency on which to urge their fellow man to conserve the alleged “natural” species:Although tempting to conclude that human activities thus benefit as well as deplete global biodiversity, the authors stress that extinct wild species cannot simply be replaced with newly evolved ones, and that nature conservation remains just as urgent.If we ever came across aliens, would we be able to understand them? (The Conversation). Maybe James Carney, a psychologist at Lancaster University, should wait till he has some subject matter before speculating about such things. Whales are not aliens; they are earthlings. Carney cannot assume they evolved intelligence that seems “alien” to humans without assuming the thing he needs to prove: evolution.Can we expect to learn such an alien language? The first hurdle would be its medium. Humans communicate in a 85-255Hz frequency range of sound and in the 430-770 THz frequency range of light. This is unlikely to be true of aliens, who will have evolved differently. Nevertheless, the problem is largely a technical one. Speeded up whale songs that are otherwise inaudible to humans, for instance, show that it is relatively easy to map “alien” stimuli into forms that humans can perceive.What does your poop say about your evolution? (PhysOrg). Pardon the disgusting subject matter, but this article seriously contends that your dietary downloads are storytellers about your distant past. The subject matter is observable and repeatable, surely, but the larger claim is not. Perhaps poop to an evolutionist is like a liver to an ancient Babylonian priest, providing a medium for his assumptions to employ, giving quasi-empirical cover for divination rites promising to deliver insight into the nature of unobservable realities.Orangutan ‘copies human speech’ (BBC News). Rocky the orangutan can mimic hundreds of human syllables. This is quite a feat, but parrots have similar abilities, and yet are not considered ancestors of human language. The observation does not justify the conclusion a scientist is drawing:It had been thought these great apes were unable to do this and, since human speech is a learned behaviour, it could not have originated from them.Study lead Dr Adriano Lameira said this “notion” could now be thrown “into the trash can”.Dr Lameira just changed the question. If it’s about the production of sounds with a larynx and mouth, then yes; humans and orangutans share some traits. But now he is asserting that human speech, including convictions of the mind, originated from ape speech. If he really believes his own mental communications came from orangutans, then we can logically throw his belief into the trash can, too. Why? Darwin himself had a “horrid doubt” about whether his own convictions which, if derived from a monkey’s mind, “are of any value or at all trustworthy” (letter to William Graham, 1881).A new design for psychotherapy trials (Medical Xpress). Our last example reveals that psychotherapy, for decades an “official” treatment for mental illness, has lacked evidence for its efficacy. A team of psychologists confessed “it is surprising how little we know about both their naturalistic course and their long-term outcome after psychotherapy.” The situation is almost criminal:One of the main reasons for this gap may be that examining long-term effects in a controlled way is difficult, expensive and bears ethical and methodological risks. For example, treatment responders are often overrepresented in follow-ups while non-responders are lost to attrition or not followed up systematically. This may result in an overestimation of treatment effects. Related to this is the problem of differential retention, which occurs when high-risk patients are systematically excluded from one treatment condition, hereby subverting the effects of initial randomization of patients to treatment arms and again leading to distorted results. Adequate intent-to-treat analyses can partly solve these problems; however, non-responders are still lost.Indeed, “Focusing on these issues is crucial for patients and clinicians to know whether treatments recommended by official guidelines can be expected to have long-lasting effects and what evidence-based options exist in case a treatment fails.” But as psychologists themselves, are they foxes guarding the henhouse? Would they be likely to recommend so-called “faith-based” solutions (such as Biblical counseling by a pastor) instead of psychological treatments? Why wouldn’t randomized trials include those, if there is evidence for their efficacy? And how do the measurements of results take into account the null hypothesis that a certain number of patients might get better on their own?We all need to learn to ask the right questions. Think of these entries as training exercises in how to question scientific claims. Many scientists do not realize that their work is a form of logic. Invested with public trust, wearing their PhDs like miter caps of a priesthood, they make pronouncements that go far beyond what they know. Anyone can make observations and jot them down in a lab book. Interpreting what they mean is a logical endeavor. Unfortunately, science education either fails to recognize or underplays the logical aspects of scientific work. Logic is not a domain of science. It’s a domain of philosophy.Philosophy is unavoidable. Scientific conclusions do not pop out of a test tube or telescope. It takes a mind thinking clearly to understand what’s going on, and what it means. Recognition of logical fallacies can avoid some common pitfalls, but the worldview foundations of good scientific thinking are frequently overlooked. As we try to show, logic cannot be derived from the evolutionary worldview. Only the Biblical worldview of a Creator making man in the image of God can sustain the reasoning necessary to do good science. That’s why many a Christian founder of science followed Kepler’s lead of “thinking God’s thoughts after Him.” That worldview can lead to trustworthy, but not exhaustive, science.(Visited 46 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more