Navy Chief holds talks with chief of US naval ops

first_imgNew Delhi: Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba on Monday held extensive talks with Chief of US Naval Operations Admiral John Michael Richardson on ways to further deepen cooperation between navies of the two countries.Admiral Richardson is on a three-day visit to India which began on Sunday. “Major issues discussed included operations and exercises, training interactions, information exchange, capacity building and capability enhancement,” the Indian Navy said. It said Admiral Richardson’s visit is intended to consolidate bilateral naval relations between India and the US and also to explore new avenues for naval cooperation. The US naval official also interacted with Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra and Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa among others.last_img read more

Alves reacts to losing Messi assist record

first_imgDani Alves is not happy about no longer being the player who provided Lionel Messi with the most assists in La LigaThe Brazilian’s record tally of 26 assists for the Barcelona star was overtaken by Luis Suarez in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Valencia.After Ezequiel Garay had put Valencia in the lead, Suarez traded passes with Messi before the Argentine then scored a 32-minute equaliser for Barcelona from 20 yards.Until then, nobody had provided Messi with more goals at Barcelona than Alves.Reacting to the news on Twitter, Alves seemed to take it in good humour by saying: “Nooooooo!!!” and including two tears of joy emojis.David Villa, SpainQuiz: How much do you know about David Villa? Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to test your knowledge about Spanish legendary forward David Villa.Alves ended an eight-year spell with Barcelona in 2016 to sign for Juventus and now plays his club football at Paris Saint-Germain.Nooooooo!!! 😂 😂 https://t.co/qLt9JMlTp3— Daniel Alves (@DaniAlvesD2) October 9, 2018last_img read more

Sarri compares Hazards allround quality to Messi and Ronaldo

first_imgChelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri is delighted with club’s win against Watford and have bared his mind about Eden Hazard’s all round quality of playing of football.Speaking after the match via Chelsea’s official website., Sarri compared Belgian Eden Hazard to Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Cristiano Ronaldo of Juventus.“Of course, he’s (Hazard)very important for us but Messi is very important for Barcelona, Ronaldo is important for Juventus. He’s a great player, he’s able to play in every position. At the moment he’s playing as a false nine and he’s able to play there.”Sacchi explains Sarri, Conte, and Ancelotti Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Arrigo Sacchi talked about how Sarri has a tougher time at Juventus than Conte at Inter; while Ancelotti’s “blood is boiling” at Napoli.Arrigo Sacchi…“He scored two and made two or three good assists. He’s very able to open spaces for his team-mates. He can play very well in every position.”Hazard scored his 100th goal in tonight’s game with Watford.last_img read more

Soldotna Man Arrested For Allegedly Threatening A Cab Driver

first_imgFacebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享According to a Soldotna Police Dispatch received on January 27, a Soldotna man was arrested for allegedly assaulting a cab driver. According to Courtview, he was arraigned on January 20 and is currently scheduled for a pre-trial conference on February 15. The incident occured on January 19, at 3:05 a.m., when Soldotna police responded to the Maverick Saloon for an aggressive male threatening to cause bodily harm to a cab driver and refused to pay his cab fare. Story as aired: Audio PlayerJennifer-on-Soldotna-man-threatened-cab-driver.mp3VmJennifer-on-Soldotna-man-threatened-cab-driver.mp300:00RPdcenter_img Robert Luton, 31, of Soldotna, was arrested for assault in the fourth degree, theft in the fourth degree and violating his conditions of release. Luton was taken to Wildwood and held on $1,000 bail. Luton was arrested in October of 2017,  for setting off the fire alarm at Sterling Elementary and causing an evacuation of the school. Luton was arrested for Terroristic Threatening in the 2nd Degree and Criminal Mischief in the 4th Degree.last_img read more

Leave supporters cheer out out out

first_imgThe pound dropped below the crucial $1.40 mark amid fears that the UK would vote to leave the European Union. Sterling fell as much as 10% early on Friday, and is on track for its worst one-day fall in history. Trading was at $1.3262, down nearly 9%, as of 5.27am BST.The pound, which had earlier hit a 2016 high as polls suggested the Remain camp would come through in the referendum, fell to lows not seen since 1981. Just before 5am BST, as various agencies began calling the referendum in favour of Leave, the pound slipped further to trade at 1.3322. Stock futures on the FTSE 100, which had ended the previous session up 1.23% were predicted to be down 8% as the vote swung Friday.Its extraordinary, said John Wraith, Head of UK Rates Strategy, UBS Investment Bank, Reuters reported. Shock probably isnt too strong a word. People will come in this morning earlier than usual, so its a skeleton staff right now. But shock was the first reaction. Now its all hands on deck trying to deal with the volatility, he said.Early Friday, the BBC, and other agencies, forecast that the UK had decided to leave the EU based on the analysis of pending undeclared counts.Markets are very nervy at the moment, Joe Rundle, head of trading at ETX Capital in London, told Reuters. Its definitely tin hats time. If Leave wins there will be carnage for cable, he said, referring to the sterling/dollar exchange rate.Elsewhere, the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo was trading down 6.73% while Hong Kongs Hang Seng was down 4.7% and the Shanghai Composite was down over 1%.Ahead of the EU referendum results, the pound was trading higher at $1.50, amid expectations that the Remain campaign would win. However, after votes in Sunderland and Newcastle swayed towards the Leave campaign, the sterling declined to $1.43. It further fell to $1.41 at about 2am.The pound then dropped below 1.35, a 31-year low, Bloomberg reported. A few traders said that they had not witnessed such dramatic moves since the financial crisis of 2008.Jeremy Cook, chief economist at World First, a UK-based foreign exchange company said, These moves are concerning and bring back pretty painful memories of 2008.The pound didnt have this bad a day [against the dollar] in the global financial crisis and the moves by the bookies to price Leave as the favourite is killing the pound. News from Wales is the most concerning at the moment alongside the London turnout dynamics.Analysts have warned that the drop was amplified by low trading volumes. Jeremy Stretch from CIBC said, Volumes are very low and markets are relatively illiquid. Traders are very jittery, its not just in sterling.last_img read more

Feds Texas Officials Not Following Judges Order On Voter ID Law

first_imgThe Obama adninistration and the State of Texas are at odds again over the state’s Voter ID law.The Department of Justice,  DOJ, today accused Texas officials of misleading voters and poll workers regarding what kind of ID is required to cast a ballot.Houston Public Media’s Coverage of Election 2016The Texas Voter ID law was struck down by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals last month which ruled it was in violation of the Voting Rights Act.In a court filing, the DOJ says the state’s educational materials regarding the newly expanded Voter ID requirements are misleading and restrictive.State officials say the language in the materials complies with the federal court order. Share Below is an excerpt from the court filing, which can be read in its entirety below:“Rather than educating voters and poll officials about opportunities to cast a regular ballot for those who “do not possess SB 14 ID and cannot reasonably obtain it,”the State has recast that language to limit the opportunity to cast a regular ballot solely to those voters who present SB 14 ID or who “have not obtained” and “cannot obtain” SB 14 ID.That standard is incorrect and far harsher than the Court-ordered standard it would displace. By recasting the Court’s language, Texas has narrowed dramatically the scope of voters protected by the Court’s Order. Moreover, the standard the State’s training and educational materials currently describe has already been rejected by this Court and the Fifth Circuit.At this critical stage, such materials should maximize accuracy and minimize confusion. Texas’s materials do neither.”Texas officials have been visiting communities across the state in an effort to educate voters about the new requirements.last_img read more

House Passes School Gun Violence Bill One Month After Florida School Shooting

first_img Share AP Photo/J. Scott ApplewhiteSpeaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis., joined from left by, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., Rep. John Rutherford, R-Fla., and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., meets with reporters following a GOP strategy session, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, March 14, 2018. Rep. Rutherford, a former sheriff of Duval County, Fla., introduced a bill, the “STOP School Violence Act of 2018,” that would attempt to curb school violence by providing more training for school officials and local law enforcement to respond to mental health crises. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)The House overwhelmingly approved a bill to improve school safety Wednesday, the first gun-related action by Congress since the shooting that left 17 dead at a Florida high school.The bill authorizes $500 million over 10 years for grants to improve training and coordination between schools and local law enforcement and help identify signs of potential violence before they occur.Lawmakers approved the bill, 407-10. It now goes to the Senate, where a similar measure is being considered.House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said the bill “provides a multi-layered approach” to identify threats so authorities can stop violence before it occurs.“Tragic violence has no place in our schools. Every American believes that,’” Ryan said. “This legislation will actually take concrete action to prevent that.”The vote came as the FBI announced it is doubling the number of supervisors assigned to review tips received from the public about possible threats of mass shootings or other violence.Deputy FBI Director David Bowdich told a Senate committee that the agency “could have and should have done more” to investigate information it received prior to the Feb. 14 massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.The FBI received at least two credible tips that the suspect in the Florida school shooting had a “desire to kill” and access to guns and could be plotting an attack, but agents failed to investigate.“While we will never know if any such investigative activity would have prevented this tragedy, we clearly should have done more,” Bowdich told the Senate Judiciary Committee.The Senate panel was considering a similar proposal to improve school safety, but a hearing Wednesday focused on law enforcement failures in Florida. Besides the FBI lapses, Broward County, Florida Sheriff Scott Israel has said his office received more than 20 calls about accused gunman Nikolas Cruz in the past few yearsSen. Charles Grassley, the Republican chairman of the committee, noted that Israel declined an invitation to testify Wednesday, as did Michael Carroll, secretary of Florida’s Department of Children and Families.“By thumbing their noses at Congress, Sheriff Israel and Secretary Carroll have let the American people down and also the citizens of Florida they serve,” said Grassley, R-Iowa.Some Democratic lawmakers sought to expand the focus to include gun control. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said more and more families are being victimized by mass shootings since a ban on certain semi-automatic weapons she authored expired in 2004.“This Congress cannot continue to do nothing, because nothing means more lives are lost, including the youngest and the most vulnerable among us,” said Feinstein, the senior Democrat on the Judiciary panel. “High school students are literally begging us to take action to get these guns off the streets and out of our schools.”As Feinstein spoke, hundreds of students were rallying outside the Capitol to urge stricter gun control laws. The rally was part of a nationwide school walkout to protest gun violence following the Florida attack. A larger rally is planned March 24.Chloe Appel, 15, of Gaithersburg, Maryland, held a sign that said, “Fix this before I text my mom from under a desk.” The high school student said she’s hopeful that Congress will enact gun control laws.“After today and after the next protest Congress will see how many people feel strongly about this so they will have to make a change,” she said.Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders told the students that young people again are leading the nation, as they did during the civil rights and anti-war movements.“All across the country people are sick and tired of gun violence, and the time is now for all of us together to stand up to the NRA and pass common-sense gun legislation,” Sanders said.The FBI has acknowledged it mishandled separate tips related to Cruz, last September and again in January.“When we make mistakes, we will not hide them,” Bowdich said, vowing to work with Congress to correct mistakes and prevent similar tragedies.Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said the FBI gets about 4,100 tips a day at its nationwide call centers with a staff of about 160 to handle them. More people should be dedicated to that task, Durbin said.President Donald Trump supports the school safety measure, one of two bills included in a modest White House plan released over the weekend to combat school shootings. The other bill would strengthen, but not expand, the federal background check system for gun purchases.The background checks bill has stalled in the Senate amid objections from some Republicans and concern by Democrats that it is insufficient. Without strong advocacy from the White House, an ambitious gun package appeared unlikely to even get off the ground, given most Republicans’ opposition to any new restrictions on gun rights.Ryan Petty, whose daughter, Alaina, was killed in the Parkland shooting, told senators that, “Nikolas Cruz and the deadly danger he posed were the worst-kept secrets in Parkland.”Petty, his voice shaking with emotion, called on lawmakers to follow the lead of Florida, which just passed legislation that raises the minimum age to buy rifles from 18 to 21; extends a three-day waiting period for handgun purchases to include long guns; and bans bump stocks, which allow guns to mimic fully automatic fire.“Build on common ground,” Petty said.last_img read more

100 Black Women Brunch

first_imgThe Northern Virginia Chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women is sponsoring its annual brunch on Nov. 21 at the Ritz Carrolton, 1250 South Hayes Street from 11:30 a. m. – 3 p. m. Special guests will include Tisha Lewis of Fox 5, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, and gospel artist Stephen Hurd. Tickets cost $75. Paid parking is available. For more information, email Shayna Jamison, ncbwnv@gmail.com or visit eventbrite.com.last_img

Where love goes to Bollywood

first_imgMeet another author from the Mills&Boon India chapter. Mahi Jay, hard-core romanticist at heart, took her time to leave a regular, comfy profession behind. She picked up the pen and took love to Bollywood. Jay speaks to Millennium Post about writing, life and romanceTell us a little about yourself.?I am an independent share market trader married to the man of my dreams. Despite being total opposites in most ways, somehow those very differences seem to work beautifully for us.  Growing up, my world was filled with books. I used to make up my own endings and situations if those on the pages of the books did not work for me. But it didn’t occur to me until much later that I could actually create my own stories. One such story filled my mind and I just had to get it down. Which was when I saw an advertisement calling for aspiring authors for Harlequin. It seemed like an omen. I abandoned the story that I was working on and gave the contest a go and  luckily for me my short story worked. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’How acquainted were you with the romance genre as a teenager? My first M&B was at 14 and I’d picked it up by accident. But after that there was no looking back. I devoured romance novels and their happy endings always gave me a high. For a while they were all I read. Until I discovered other genres and switched. But even now, my go to happy fix is a romance novel.Why choose a theme like a bollywood hero falling in love with a PR girl?In India everyone grows up on movies… So if i’m going to write a romance then I thought, why not about a bollywood hero? Someone larger than life. But it also gave me a chance to explore who he was as a person. His feelings, his foibles and his vulnerabilities. Normally it is the hero who rushes to rescue the damsel in distress but I created a strong independent heroine.     Which Bollywood heroes did you have a crush on that might have spilled over into the book??I was curious to see what kind of person a bollywood hero would be behind the screen persona. That curiosity served as my inspiration. Beyond that I didn’t model my hero against anyone in particular. My hero’s past shaped who he was and I went with that.last_img read more

Why TensorFlow always tops machine learning and artificial intelligence tool surveys

first_imgTensorFlow is an open source machine learning framework for carrying out high-performance numerical computations. It provides excellent architecture support which allows easy deployment of computations across a variety of platforms ranging from desktops to clusters of servers, mobiles, and edge devices. Have you ever thought, why TensorFlow has become so popular in such a short span of time? What made TensorFlow so special, that we seeing a huge surge of developers and researchers opting for the TensorFlow framework? Interestingly, when it comes to artificial intelligence frameworks showdown, you will find TensorFlow emerging as a clear winner most of the time. The major credit goes to the soaring popularity and contributions across various forums such as GitHub, Stack Overflow, and Quora. The fact is, TensorFlow is being used in over 6000 open source repositories showing their roots in many real-world research and applications. How TensorFlow came to be The library was developed by a group of researchers and engineers from the Google Brain team within Google AI organization. They wanted a library that provides strong support for machine learning and deep learning and advanced numerical computations across different scientific domains. Since the time Google open sourced its machine learning framework in 2015, TensorFlow has grown in popularity with more than 1500 projects mentions on GitHub. The constant updates made to the TensorFlow ecosystem is the real cherry on the cake. This has ensured all the new challenges developers and researchers face are addressed, thus easing the complex computations and providing newer features, promises, and performance improvements with the support of high-level APIs. By open sourcing the library, the Google research team have received all the benefits from a huge set of contributors outside their existing core team. Their idea was to make TensorFlow popular by open sourcing it, thus making sure all new research ideas are implemented in TensorFlow first allowing Google to productize those ideas. Read Also: 6 reasons why Google open sourced TensorFlow What makes TensorFlow different from the rest? With more and more research and real-life use cases going mainstream, we can see a big trend among programmers, and developers flocking towards the tool called TensorFlow. The popularity for TensorFlow is quite evident, with big names adopting TensorFlow for carrying out artificial intelligence tasks. Many popular companies such as NVIDIA, Twitter, Snapchat, Uber and more are using TensorFlow for all their major operations and research areas. On one hand, someone can make a case that TensorFlow’s popularity is based on its origins/legacy. TensorFlow being developed under the house of “Google” enjoys the reputation of the household name. There’s no doubt, TensorFlow has been better marketed than some of its competitors. Source: The Data Incubator However that’s not the full story. There are many other compelling reasons why small scale to large scale companies prefer using TensorFlow over other machine learning tools TensorFlow key functionalities TensorFlow provides an accessible and readable syntax which is essential for making these programming resources easier to use. The complex syntax is the last thing developers need to know given machine learning’s advanced nature. TensorFlow provides excellent functionalities and services when compared to other popular deep learning frameworks. These high-level operations are essential for carrying out complex parallel computations and for building advanced neural network models. TensorFlow is a low-level library which provides more flexibility. Thus you can define your own functionalities or services for your models. This is a very important parameter for researchers because it allows them to change the model based on changing user requirements. TensorFlow provides more network control. Thus allowing developers and researchers to understand how operations are implemented across the network. They can always keep track of new changes done over time. Distributed training The trend of distributed deep learning began in 2017, when Facebook released a paper showing a set of methods to reduce the training time of a convolutional neural network model. The test was done on RESNET-50 model on ImageNet dataset which took one hour to train instead of two weeks. 256 GPUs spread over 32 servers were used. This revolutionary test has open the gates for many research work which have massively reduced the experimentation time by running many tasks in parallel on multiple GPUs. Google’s distributed TensorFlow has allowed all the researchers and developers to scale out complex distributed training using in-built methods and operations that optimizes distributed deep learning among servers. . Google’s distributed TensorFlow engine which is part of the regular TensorFlow repo, works exceptionally well with the existing TensorFlow’s operations and functionalities. It has allowed exploring two of the most important distributed methods: Distribute the training time of a neural network model over many servers to reduce the training time. Searching for good hyperparameters by running parallel experiments over multiple servers. Google has given distributed TensorFlow engine the required power to steal the share of the market acquired by other distributed projects such as Microsoft’s CNTK, AMPLab’s SparkNet, and CaffeOnSpark. Even though the competition is tough, Google has still managed to become more popular when compared to the other alternatives in the market. From research to production Google has, in some ways, democratized deep learning., The key reason is TensorFlow’s high-level APIs making deep learning accessible to everyone. TensorFlow provides pre-built functions and advanced operations to ease the task of building different neural network models. It provides the required infrastructure and hardware which makes them one of the leading libraries used extensively by researchers and students in the deep learning domain. In addition to research tools, TensorFlow extends the services by bringing the model in production using TensorFlow Serving. It is specifically designed for production environments, which provides a flexible, high-performance serving system for machine learning models. It provides all the functionalities and operations which makes it easy to deploy new algorithms and experiments as per changing requirements and preferences. It provides an excellent feature of out-of-the-box integration with TensorFlow models which can be easily extended to serve other types of models and data. TensorFlow’s API is a complete package which is easier to use and read, plus provides helpful operators, debugging and monitoring tools, and deployment features. This has led to growing use of TensorFlow library as a complete package within the ecosystem by the emerging body of students, researchers, developers, production engineers from various fields who are gravitating towards artificial intelligence. There is a TensorFlow for web, mobile, edge, embedded and more TensorFlow provides a range of services and modules within their existing ecosystem making them as one of the ground-breaking end-to-end tools to provide state-of-the-art deep learning. TensorFlow.js for machine learning on the web JavaScript library for training and deploying machine learning models in the browser. This library provides flexible and intuitive APIs to build and train new and pre-existing models from scratch right in the browser or under Node.js. TensorFlow Lite for mobile and embedded ML It is a TensorFlow lightweight solution used for mobile and embedded devices. It is fast since it enables on-device machine learning inference with low latency. It supports hardware acceleration with the Android Neural Networks API. The future releases of TensorFlow Lite will bring more built-in operators, performance improvements, and will support more models to simplify the developer’s experience of bringing machine learning services within mobile devices. TensorFlow Hub for reusable machine learning A library which is used extensively to reuse machine learning models. Thus you can transfer learning by reusing parts of machine learning models. TensorBoard for visual debugging While training a complex neural network model, the computations you use in TensorFlow can be very confusing. TensorBoard makes it very easy to understand and debug your TensorFlow programs in the form of visualizations. It allows you to easily inspect and understand your TensorFlow runs and graphs. Sonnet Sonnet is a DeepMind library which is built on top of TensorFlow extensively used to build complex neural network models. All of this factors have made the TensorFlow library immensely appealing for building a wide spectrum of machine learning and deep learning projects. This tool has become a preferred choice for everyone from space research giant NASA and other confidential government agencies, to an impressive roster of private sector giants. Road Ahead for TensorFlow TensorFlow no doubt is better marketed compared to the other deep learning frameworks. The community appears to be moving very fast. In any given hour, there are approximately 10 people around the world contributing or improving the TensorFlow project on GitHub. TensorFlow dominates the field with the largest active community. It will be interesting to see what new advances TensorFlow and other utilities make possible for the future of our digital world. Continuing the recent trend of rapid updates, the TensorFlow team is making sure they address all the current and active challenges faced by the contributors and the developers while building machine learning and deep learning models. TensorFlow 2.0 will be a major update, we can expect the release candidate by next year early March. The preview version of this major milestone is expected to hit later this year. The major focus will be on ease of use, additional support for more platforms and languages, and eager execution will be the central feature of TensorFlow 2.0. This breakthrough version will add more functionalities and operations to handle current research areas such as reinforcement learning, GANs, building advanced neural network models more efficiently. Google will continue to invest and upgrade their existing TensorFlow ecosystem. According to Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai “artificial intelligence is more important than electricity or fire.” TensorFlow is the solution they have come up with to bring artificial intelligence into reality and provide a stepping stone to revolutionize humankind. Read more The 5 biggest announcements from TensorFlow Developer Summit 2018 The Deep Learning Framework Showdown: TensorFlow vs CNTK Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) 3.0: Google’s answer to cloud-ready Artificial Intelligencelast_img read more

Hollywood celebrity Matt Damon and family vacation in Costa Rica

first_imgRelated posts:Beyoncé reunites with Destiny’s Child in Costa Rica for Kelly Rowland’s wedding Mexico said set to announce new capital airport opening in 2018 World’s fastest man Usain Bolt partying in Costa Rica Honduras to convert US-built airbase into airport for capital The actor who portrayed the down-on-his-luck Will Hunting looks like he’s living more like the talented Mr. Ripley these days. Oscar-winner Matt Damon and his family arevacationing in the Pacific beach town of Santa Teresa, according to the daily La Nación.Damon, 43, was reportedly seen surfing Tuesday morning off the famous beach. The “Ocean’s 11” star and his family strolled the dusty streets of Santa Teresa and posed for pictures and gave autographs, according to the dispatch.“They seem to really enjoy being here and they behave really well. [Damon] is a very friendly guy with everyone,” chef Gary González of the restaurant Habanero told La Nación.The daily reported that Damon and his wife, Luciana Barroso, and their daughters Isabella, Gia and Stella, and stepdaughter Alexia entered the country on June 28 and have not yet left.This is Damon’s third visit to Costa Rica, the Immigration Administration confirmed to The Tico Times. In July 2013, Damon and his family were also spotted in Santa Teresa.The Boston native’s latest film, “The Monuments Men,” was released in February. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Freddie Mac Expect Less Refi Activity in 2017

first_img October 20, 2016 663 Views Freddie Mac Housing Market U.S. Economy 2016-10-20 Seth Welborn Freddie Mac: Expect Less Refi Activity in 2017 in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Newscenter_img (Editor’s note: For more on this topic, see the cover story in the forthcoming November issue of MReport magazine which covers the possible end of the refi boom more in-depth)By Ryan SchuetteMortgage markets are doing well, but don’t take anything for granted—especially with looming declines in refinance originations and less certainty around the broader economy.That’s the synopsis of an economic forecast out from Freddie Mac on Thursday. According to the GSE, $2 trillion in total originations expected this year could dip to about $1.7 trillion in 2017.Part of that is due to a cool-off in refinance originations activity. Freddie Mac predicted a steep decline in this sector—by some 41 percent, a fall from $1 trillion in refinance activity to about $600 billion.The expected declines also owe to unpredictable interest-rate moves from the Federal Reserve and the ripple effect of a post-Brexit world economy, according to the analysis.”As the economy sputters along a little bit faster than stall speed, the U.S. housing market continues to be a bright spot, though there’s less room to run than in the prior few years,” Sean Becketti, chief economist for Freddie Mac, said in a statement. “Unlike new home sales, existing home sales have nearly recovered back to pre-recession norms.“However, worldwide economic growth is weak and its prospects have gotten worse. This may all sound familiar because we’ve been here before,” Becketti added.According to the analysis, the economy should chug along at 1.9 percent year-over-year, with 1.6 percent in GDP growth in 2016. The 30-year fixed-interest mortgage could very well average 3.9 percent fourth quarter next year.The GSE also predicted that total home sales will feel a drag, with an uptick in new single-family housing construction lifting that count only slightly higher to 6.16 million, marginally better than 6.04 million reported in 2016.“[W]e see new home sales improving some next year driven by increases in new single-family housing construction which will push total home sales slightly higher,” Becketti said. Sharelast_img read more

Derrick Hall satisfied with Dbacks buying and se

first_img Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury will forever be tied to Rams counterpart Sean McVay.Had McVay not found near-immediate success as a young, offensive innovator, Arizona likely wouldn’t have pulled the trigger in handing the franchise keys to a recently-fired Texas Tech head coach with no NFL coaching experience.The two coaches are also good friends — good enough friends that McVay recently pulled quite the prank on his buddy while the two shared a dinner with Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes. 5 Comments   Share   The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury, left, and Rams head coach Sean McVay, right. (AP photos) “I kind of tricked him into thinking he was going to be in trouble with the league with tampering and stuff like that,” McVay told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on The Adam Schefter Podcast. “I think his assistant got all wigged out. He was worried about losing (draft) picks.”Related LinksCardinals to host DE Nick Bosa in Arizona, per reportArizona Sports NFL Mock Draft Tracker: Who’s next for the Cards at No. 1?Alright, we need details, Sean.“We have a mutual friend that I put his name in my phone as (NFL commissioner) Roger Goodell,” McVay told Schefter. “I had this friend send me a text saying, ‘I can’t believe you’re at dinner with Kingsbury and Mahomes. You know better than this. This is tampering. You’re both losing picks.’ And I showed Kliff the text. He saw a ghost.”That’s pretty innovative! It turns out McVay’s secret sauce of leading an NFL team to the Super Bowl doesn’t include a Belichickien aversion to hanging out with friends and having a little fun.Next up: Let’s wait to see if and how Kingsbury might get McVay back.“I’m pretty proud of that one, Adam,” the Rams coach said of his relatively elaborate prank. “(Kingsbury) said, ‘That’s messed up. I’m getting you back.’” Top Stories Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

US pay TV providers will lose 26 of their legacy

first_imgUS pay TV providers will lose 26% of their legacy subscriber base by 2030 amid growing competition from virtual pay TV providers, according to The Diffusion Group (TDG).The research and advisory firm said it expects legacy multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs) to experience “considerable subscriber losses” in the coming years.TDG tips legacy pay TV penetration to fall from 81% of US households in 2017 to 60% in 2030. Over the same time period it expects the penetration of virtual pay TV services – such as Sling TV, DirecTV Now and YouTube TV – to grow from roughly 4% of US households to 14%. This marks an increase of 350% but from a very small base.“TDG said early on that the future of TV was an app. Unfortunately, most incumbent MVPDs weren’t taking notes,” said Joel Espelien, TDG senior analyst.“The question is no longer if the future of TV is an app, but how quickly and economically incumbents can adapt to this truth and transition to an all-broadband app-based live multi-channel system.”Overall TDG’s report, ‘The Rise of the Virtual Pay TV Provider’, claims that the penetration of live multi-channel pay TV services will decline from 85% of US households in 2017 to 79% in 2030.It said that while this represents a loss of only 7%, it illustrates the “ongoing secular decline of a once healthy market space”.TDG predicts that by 2030, roughly 30 million US households will live without an MVPD service of any kind.last_img read more

Not only will Haggerty walk free but he has named

first_img“Not only will Haggerty walk free but he has named none of the police officers who were involved in collusion on a grand scale.“It is unacceptable that so many innocent people died and those with blood on their hands get a ‘discount’ on their sentences while their minders go free.“I sat in court today with families as atrocity after atrocity committed by Haggarty was catalogued.“It was harrowing and a reminder of the pain that victims and survivors continue to endure as a result of a political failure to meet their needs,” added Mr Dallat. With time spent on remand, Haggarty could be free within weeks if Life Sentence Parole Commissioners agree to release him on licence.DALLAT: VICTIMS LET DOWN BY ‘SUPERGRASS’ HAGGARTY SENTENCE was last modified: January 29th, 2018 by John2John2 Tags: BELFAST CROWN COURTDALLAT: VICTIMS LET DOWN BY ‘SUPERGRASS’ HAGGARTY SENTENCEEAST DERRYGARY HAGGARTYJOHN DALLATPPSPSNISDLP MLAN SDLP MLA John Dallat has said that victims are sorely disappointed and feel let down by the scale of the reduced sentence handed down to former UVF chief Gary Haggarty for his involvement in hundreds of crimes, including five murders.The 46-year-old former UVF commander was handed a life tariff sentence of 35 years for after pleading guilty to 202 terrorist offences including string of murders attempted murders, conspiracy to murder, shootings, bombings, beatings and directing terrorism.But because he became a British state ‘supergrass’ the judge reduced that sentence to six and a half years.center_img Speaking from Belfast’s Crown Court today, alongside victims, Mr Dallat said:“Relatives of those murdered by UVF death gangs with the involvement of Gary Haggarty don’t believe they got justice in Court 13 today.“While they were prepared for some ‘discount’ for Haggerty they didn’t expect the scale of the reduction he has received for a series of heinous murders.“After committing despicable crimes, it feels like he’s been given a ‘get out of jail free’ card. ShareTweetlast_img read more

Doug spoke in trenchant munificent stentorian and

first_imgDoug spoke in trenchant munificent stentorian and intelligent terms—everyone  should  read  and  ponder what he spoke so eloquently about.—Anonymous Recommended Link In Case You Missed It… Our colleague Teeka Tiwari is a crypto investing expert. He’s very bullish on the sector and has helped his subscribers score gains of up to 20,000%. This Thursday, Teeka is hosting a free cryptocurrency training seminar. Reserve your spot right here. Recommended Link I read your email, and it disturbed me far more than the subject itself. To lump all protestors together as being created by someone else’s agenda rather than thoughtful humans concerned about an injustice saddened me. But it did get me to look into the story more. I found a very thoughtful article you might find interesting. —Amy But don’t just take my word for it. Look at what Phyto Partners is doing… Phyto Partners is a venture capital fund that invests in early-stage cannabis companies. Today, it has 12 companies in its portfolio. And none of them grow, process, or sell marijuana. Instead, they serve the marijuana industry.One of those companies, New Frontier Data, is a major marijuana data firm. Another, Steep Hill Labs, is a leader in marijuana lab testing. Then there’s Grownetics…• This company is radically changing how people grow marijuana… I know because I recently visited the Grownetics team in downtown Boulder, Colorado. In a minute, I’ll tell you how Grownetics is revolutionizing the marijuana industry. I’ll also tell you about the incredible insight I learned while in Boulder. But let me first tell you what I was doing there. After all, Boulder’s a long way from Casey Research’s headquarters in Florida.• In June, I did something I’ve wanted to do for years… I turned in my apartment key. I sold most of my belongings. And I hit the road. That’s right. I left sunny South Florida to become a digital nomad. I did this because I’ve come to realize something working with Doug Casey… The best money-making opportunities are rarely in plain sight. More often than not, they’re hidden. This means you need to go “into the field” to find them. That’s particularly true for the legal marijuana market, which is being born before our eyes.• So I went to the frontlines of this emerging industry… My first stop was Vancouver. I spent all of July there. After that, I went to San Francisco for three weeks. Then, I spent nearly all of September in Colorado. There, I visited an indoor marijuana growing facility. I toured a state-of-the-art cannabis research lab. And yes, I drove to Boulder to meet the Grownetics team. I did this because an industry insider told me that Grownetics is doing incredible work. And he wasn’t joking… 3 Marijuana Stocks to Buy Right Now Canada is set to vote on a new nationwide law that will set off the biggest event in the history of marijuana. The Canadian pot market will explode from $400 million to $8 billion. And new marijuana millionaires will be minted. If you missed out on the first marijuana boom, when penny pot stocks delivered peak gains of 7,820%… 6,233%… and 3,986%… often in months… This is your second and final chance. Don’t miss out again. Discover the 3 companies that will dominate the marijuana market.center_img — Teeka’s new cryptocurrency prediction will shock you Teeka’s previous cryptocurrency predictions could have made you 1,241%, 2,050% and even 14,354% in as little as 6 months. To get his latest prediction – including the name of the crypto he calls “the next big thing in cryptocurrencies” – click here. By Justin Spittler, editor, Casey Daily Dispatch Big money is pouring into marijuana. During the first four months of 2017, cannabis-related companies raised more than $700 million. That’s almost seven times more than they raised during the same period last year. This isn’t “dumb money,” either. Some of the world’s savviest investors have placed huge bets on marijuana. Peter Thiel, for example, recently invested millions of dollars in Privateer Holdings, a private equity firm focused on legal cannabis. Thiel was an early investor in Facebook, and is a legend in Silicon Valley. Then there’s venture capital firm Benchmark Capital, which was an early investor in Twitter, Uber, Snapchat, and Instagram. It recently put $8 million in Hound Labs, an Oakland-based startup that’s developing a device to test whether drivers are under the influence of marijuana. These are big investments from big-time investors.• It tells us the marijuana boom is for real… And that’s exactly why you should consider speculating on marijuana stocks if you haven’t already. But you should realize something before diving in… The best marijuana investments aren’t traditional marijuana companies. They’re companies that serve the industry. • You see, Grownetics isn’t your typical marijuana company… It doesn’t grow marijuana. It doesn’t own dispensaries. And it doesn’t make marijuana edibles. Instead, it’s a technology company that’s solving one of the marijuana industry’s biggest problems. You see, most marijuana companies have a “head of cultivation” on staff. This person feeds, waters, and monitors the health of marijuana plants at an indoor facility. Over time, they figure out what the plants like and what they don’t like. And many head cultivators simply write this information down in a journal. This approach isn’t just old-fashioned. It’s risky. Think about it. If the head of cultivation walks, they’re going to take that information with them. And that basically screws over the owner of the facility.• Grownetics wants to fix this problem with technology… And here’s how… Grownetics builds operating systems for indoor farmers and greenhouse cultivators. This system includes management software linked to a network of high-resolution sensors inside marijuana growing facilities. These sensors monitor room temperature, lighting, humidity, CO2 levels, and a host of other inputs. Grownetics’ software then organizes this data in a way that’s easy to understand. This saves companies time and money. And it helps them boost the yield and potency of their crop. (You can learn more about the incredible work that Vince and his team are doing by visiting their website right here.) In short, Grownetics helps companies grow better pot, and a lot more of it. That’s why the company has customers all over the country, and a rapidly growing pipeline…• But I know what you’re probably thinking… “Marijuana’s a weed. How hard can it possibly be to grow?” Well, actually, it can be very difficult. That’s because marijuana’s a very complex plant. In fact, Grownetics COO Vince Harkiewicz told me there’s “never been a pharmaceutical crop like marijuana”: The closest thing might be poppies, which are used to make opiates for pharmaceutical industries, but that’s just one chemical you’re producing. With cannabis, there’s hundreds of cannabinoids and terpenes in the plant. And they all affect the way the medicine is received by the patient. That’s right. • Marijuana isn’t just a plant that gets people high… It’s also medicine. That’s why the world’s top botanists are coming to the marijuana industry in droves. It’s why the world’s best investors are pouring billions into marijuana companies. It’s also why companies are paying top dollar for Grownetics’ services.• Now, I unfortunately can’t recommend Grownetics to you… The company’s private, and a startup at that. So, why did I tell this story? Simple. Most people have ridiculous misconceptions about the marijuana industry. They think the industry’s run by stoners, hippies, and burnouts. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. The industry’s attracting world-class entrepreneurs, engineers, and scientists. It’s employing real science. And it’s developing its own cutting-edge technology. In short, the legal marijuana industry is becoming more and more like Big Pharma every day.• Soon, everyday investors will figure this out… When that happens, money will pour into marijuana stocks like we’ve never seen. That’s something you want to be ready for. So, consider buying marijuana stocks if you haven’t already. Just understand that these stocks are still very speculative. So, do your homework before diving in. I also encourage you to read these recent articles of mine: Why This U.S. Army Officer Retired to Focus on Cannabis The Great Marijuana Bull Market Has Officially Arrived The Window’s Closing…But You Can Still Become a “Marijuana Millionaire” The No. 1 Mistake Marijuana Investors Are Making As you’ll see, the biggest opportunities in marijuana aren’t in the States. They’re north of the border in Canada…Regards,Justin Spittler New Orleans, LA October 31, 2017 P.S. This marijuana boom is just getting started. And now is the time to own the best stocks to take advantage. We have a basket of marijuana companies in our Crisis Investing newsletter that are set to soar in the coming years. You can access these names, along with all of our research on the sector, with a subscription to Crisis Investing. Click here to learn more. Sights From the Road Earlier, I told you how I left sunny South Florida to become a traveling analyst. So far, my world tour has taken me to Vancouver, Seattle, San Francisco, Denver, Las Vegas, South Carolina, and New Orleans. Along the way, I’ve seen some incredible things. So today, I’m going to share a few photographs that I took at Grownetics’ headquarters in downtown Boulder. The first photo shows the workstation in Grownetics’ lab. Next, a 3D printing machine that Vince and his team use to make components. Finally, here’s a photo of an award that Grownetics picked up last year at the 2016 Cannabist Awards in Las Vegas for Best Technology Start-up. As you can see, Vince and the rest of the Grownetics team are doing some incredible things. So, be sure to check out their website to learn more about them.Reader MailbagToday, readers write in with their thoughts on Doug Casey’s interview on cultural appropriation:Doug—you are right on the money, as usual. The SJW mentality is a step towards control, and the type of control they desire is evident from those who have done this before.—Barry —last_img read more

Bloodwork was supposed to be the last step in Isel

first_imgBloodwork was supposed to be the last step in Isela’s application for life insurance. But when she arrived at the lab, her appointment had been canceled.”That was my first warning,” Isela says. She contacted her insurance agent and was told her application was denied because something on her medication list indicated that Isela uses drugs. Isela, a registered nurse who works in an addiction treatment program at Boston Medical Center, scanned her med list. It showed a prescription for the opioid-reversal drug naloxone — brand name Narcan.”But I’m a nurse, I use it to help people,” Isela remembers telling her agent. “If there is an overdose, I could save their life.”That’s a message public health leaders aim to spread far and wide. “BE PREPARED. GET NALOXONE. SAVE A LIFE,” was the message at the top of a summary advisory from the U.S. surgeon general in April.But some life insurers consider the use of prescription drugs when reviewing policy applicants. And it can be difficult, some say, to tell the difference between someone who carries naloxone to save others and someone who carries naloxone because they are at risk for an overdose.Primerica is the insurer Isela says turned her down. (NPR has agreed to use just Isela’s first name because she is worried about how this story might affect her ongoing ability to get life insurance.) The company says it can’t discuss individual cases. But in a prepared statement, Primerica notes that naloxone has become increasingly available over the counter.”Now, if a life insurance applicant has a prescription for naloxone, we request more information about its intended use as part of our underwriting process,” says Keith Hancock, the vice president for corporate communications. “Primerica is supportive of efforts to help turn the tide on the national opioid epidemic.”After Primerica turned her down, Isela applied to a second life insurer and was again denied coverage. But the second company told her it might reconsider if she obtained a letter from her doctor explaining why she needs naloxone. So, Isela did contact her primary care physician — and then realized that her doctor had not prescribed the drug.Isela had bought naloxone at a pharmacy. To help reduce overdose deaths, Massachusetts and many other states have established a standing order for naloxone — one prescription that works for everybody. Isela couldn’t just give her insurer that statewide prescription; she had to find the doctor who signed it. As it happens, that physician — Dr. Alex Walley — also works at Boston Medical Center.Walley is an associate professor of medicine at Boston University; he also works in addiction medicine at Boston Medical Center and is the medical director for the Opioid Overdose Prevention Pilot Program at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.”We want naloxone to be available to a wide group of people — people who have an opioid use disorder themselves, but also [those in] their social networks and other people in a position to rescue them,” Walley says.He says he’s written a half dozen letters for other BMC employees denied life or disability insurance because of naloxone, and that troubles him.”My biggest concern is that people will be discouraged by this from going to get a naloxone rescue kit at the pharmacy,” Walley says. “So this has been frustrating.”The life insurance hassle — and threat of being turned to down — has discouraged Isela and some of her fellow nurses. She is not carrying a naloxone kit outside the hospital right now because she doesn’t want it to show up on her active medication list until the life insurance problem is sorted out.”So if something were to happen on the street, I don’t have one — just because I didn’t want another conflict,” Isela said.BMC has alerted the state’s Division of Insurance, which has said in a written response that it is reviewing the cases and drafting guidelines for “the reasonable use of drug history information in determining whether to issue a life insurance policy.”But Isela isn’t a drug user. And yet, she is being penalized as if she were.Michael Botticelli, who runs the Grayken Center for Addiction Medicine at BMC, says friends and family members of patients with an addiction must be able to carry naloxone without fear that doing so will send them to the insurance reject pile.”It’s incumbent on all of us to make sure that we try to kind of nip this in the bud,” he says, “before it is any more wide-scale.”Botticelli says increased access to naloxone across Massachusetts is one of the main reasons overdose deaths are down in the state. The most recent state report shows 20 fewer fatalities this year compared to last.Botticelli relayed his concerns in a letter to Dr. Jerome Adams, the U.S. surgeon general, who says he contacted the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. That group says it has not heard of any cases of life insurance applicants being denied because they purchased naloxone.Adams says it’s good to, as Botticelli suggests, nip the problem in the bud.”Naloxone saves lives,” Adams says, “and it is important that all Americans know about the vital role bystanders can play in preventing opioid overdose deaths when equipped with this lifesaving medication.”Isela says the second company that rejected her has agreed to let her reapply, in light of Walley’s letter stating that she carries the drug so that she can reverse an overdose. Isela is in the process of reapplying.This story is part of a reporting partnership with NPR, WBUR and Kaiser Health News. Copyright 2018 WBUR. To see more, visit WBUR.last_img read more

Rice University expert available to discuss Texas first samesex marriage

first_imgAddThis Rice UniversityOffice of Public Affairs / News & Media RelationsEXPERT ALERTDavid Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduAmy McCaig713-348-6777amym@rice.edu Sharecenter_img Rice University expert available to discuss Texas’ first same-sex marriageHOUSTON – (Feb. 19, 2015) – Despite Texas’ ban on gay marriage, the first same-sex couple has been legally married in Travis County today through a court order. Brian Riedel, assistant director of Rice’s Center for the Study of Women, Gender and Sexuality, is available to discuss the timely issue.The marriage follows a Feb. 17 ruling by Travis County Probate Judge Guy Herman, who said that Texas’ ban on same-sex marriage violates the U.S. Constitution.“The recent ruling by Travis County Judge Guy Herman is very welcome, and congratulations are due to Sarah Goodfriend and Suzanne Bryant,” Riedel said. “However, Judge Herman’s ruling is not the final word on the matter; it opens up a path for those opposed to same-sex marriages to legally block further marriages in Texas.”Riedel noted that Justice Clarence Thomas’ recent remarks on same-sex marriage are a reminder that the United States Supreme Court has yet to rule definitively on the issue.“Much is still in motion on same-sex marriage at the state and federal levels,” Riedel said. “At the same time, marriage is not the primary issue for many people in Texas; Houston is also awaiting a ruling from District Judge Robert Schaffer on whether the petition to block the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance will stand.”In addition to his involvement with the Center for the Study of Women, Gender and Sexuality, Riedel is a professor in the practice of humanities and has taught Introduction to LGBT Studies and Sexual Debates in the U.S. at Rice. He holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from Rice and a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Riedel’s research interests include international activism and the preservation of Houston’s LGBT history.To schedule an interview with Riedel, contact Amy McCaig, senior media relations specialist at Rice, at amym@rice.edu or 713-348-6777.-30-Follow Rice News and Media Relations on Twitter @RiceUNews.Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,920 undergraduates and 2,567 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is just over 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is highly ranked for best quality of life by the Princeton Review and for best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go here.last_img read more

Is Big Pharma for or Against Legalizing Medical Marijuana Maybe Both

first_img Get 1 Year of Green Entrepreneur for $19.99 Cannabis Journalist | Tech Evangelist Covering High Growth Trends 8 min read Next Article Image credit: Kevork Djansezian | Getty Images Add to Queue Guest Writer Andre Bourque Green Entrepreneur provides how-to guides, ideas and expert insights for entrepreneurs looking to start and grow a cannabis business. People growing their own marijuana is a significant concern to Big Pharma. As state legalization of cannabis-derivatives spreads, the drug companies contemplating the potential of medical marijuana see a threat from both homegrown and professionally harvested medical-grade marijuana.Pharma offers quality control and deep testing but experience shows that research and development adds to customer cost. Even the 21st Century Cures Act won’t speed up the famously slow pace of FDA drug approvals. Given the facts and the perception, you have to wonder if Big Pharma is for or against legalizing marijuana.Related: Science and FDA Say Cannabis Is Medicine but DEA Insists It Isn’tHere’s the problem.A lot of money always attracts a lot interest. Big Pharma wants the revenues that marijuana promises but concede market forces threaten their interests. Big Pharma can’t getting its biggest slice of the pie with individuals and licensed producers harvesting cannabis, not to mention the the black market that continues to thrive.Ben Cohen, writing for US News, insists it’s all about money. He writes, “For years, large corporations and well-heeled lobbyists have blocked the legalization of marijuana for medical use or recreational use in order to protect their own profits.”There’s no reason to expect this to stop.On the other hand, cannabis advocates have a personal and emotional investment in promoting the legalization, or at least decriminalization, of marijuana. Sometimes that makes them anti-institutional and they skew the role of Big Pharma. Finding an objective point of view is difficult.You might consider the hypocrisy at the February 2014 meeting of the Community Anti-Drug Coalition of America (CADCA). While speaker after speaker preached against the legalization of marijuana, leading financial sponsors of the program included Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of Oxycontin.As reported in The Nation, both CADCA and the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids (formerly the Partnership for a Drug-Free America) accept financial support from the producers of the same opioid medications that have led to tens of thousands of deaths. The same two groups, among others, have opposed U.S. Congressional efforts to label prescription opioids for “severe pain,” but they have supported continuing Medicare reimbursement for the addictive pills.Moreover, pharmaceutical companies take shelter in the DEA’s listing of marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug, the same category as heroin. As long as the DEA effectively prohibits marijuana medical research, Big Pharma can take the moral high road. The Schedule 1 designation severely limits needed research into the medical efficacy of cannabis-derivatives.”Big pharma is lobbying against legalization, on the purported grounds of safety, but in reality, they are just buying time to create their own synthetic cannabis medicines,” said Alan Hirsch, CEO of Diagnostic Lab Corporation, a cannabis safety and science company. “Several biotech companies have started creating cannabinoid chemistry from rice or yeast, but eventually, these medicines will be manufactured by Big Pharma in Schedule 1 facilities.” Big Pharma Is Developing Cannabis Painkillers – Here’s What They Can Do To Become Part of the Mainstream Market. https://t.co/WGj1yWE2rv pic.twitter.com/s0w3fmzsPe— HIGH TIMES (@HIGH_TIMES_Mag) July 19, 2017 The problem that started with the Trump campaign.Many of the same voters who elected President Donald J. Trump voted to liberalize marijuana enforcement. And, like everything else with the arrival of the Trump administration, things remain in a state of confusion pending official updated stance.In a Town Hall (03/20/2016) meeting, then-candidate Trump said, “I think that as far as drug legalization we talk about marijuana and in terms of medical I think I am basically for that. I’ve heard some wonderful things in terms of medical. I’m watching Colorado very carefully to see what’s happening out there.”Related: Getting Healthy, Not High: Using Cannabis to Fight CancerOn The O’Reilly Factor (02/12/2016), when Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly called medical marijuana a “ruse,” candidate Trump said, “But I know people that have serious problems and they did that they really — it really does help them.”Later, candidate Trump told the Washington Post (10/29/2016), “In terms of marijuana and legalization, I think that should be a state issue, state-by-state … Marijuana is such a big thing. I think medical should happen — right? Don’t we agree? I think so. And then I really believe we should leave it up to the states.”Decades ago he also told the Miami Herald (04/14/1990) “We’re losing badly the War on Drugs. You have to legalize drugs to win that war. You have to take the profit away from these drug czars.”Confusion about the Trump Administration and cannabis.President Donald J. Trump has sent several confusing signals to the pharmaceutical industry and the cannabis advocates. NewsMaxFinance (03/03/3017) quoted President-elect Trump as saying, “pharmaceutical companies are ‘getting away with murder’ in what they charge the government for medicines.” President Trump repeated that charge at a press conference reported by the Washington Post (01/11/2017) when he also said, “Pharma has a lot of lobbies, a lot of lobbyists and a lot of power.”Fox Business (02/01/2017) interviewed Eli Lilly’s CEO David A. Ricks following Trump’s White House meeting with pharmaceutical industry leaders. “When asked if he gave the president any commitment to reducing drug prices or to investing in U.S. operations or jobs, Ricks responded, ‘No, Lilly didn’t do that. But, what we did say is that with the right policy environment, in particular, the corporate tax rate which today is an inhibitor for us to invest in manufacturing here in the United States, along with other pro-business policies could allow us to expand operations in the U.S’.”Related: Will the ‘Entrepreneur’ President Embrace the Cannabis Economy?And, Emma Court of MarketWatch (03/01/2017) reported following Trump’s first State of the Union Address, “The Tuesday evening mention of drug prices underscores ‘our view that Trump is committed to some action to permit federal government involvement in pricing under Medicare Part D, his position for a year,’ Evercore ISI policy analyst Terry Haines said. ‘We continue to think that comes during ACA reform legislation when Trump can insist something be included as a condition of him signing the bill into law.’”So perhaps President Trump is jawboning the pharmaceutical industry to make a deal? Trump wants some concession he can take to his populist constituency in trade for lower corporate taxes. On the surface, this has nothing to do with marijuana. In fact, his position on marijuana may be something he can trade.Related: Marijuana Advocates Wait for Trump’s Stance on Legalized CannabisIt’s all about the money.Is Big Pharma for or against legalizing marijuana? Nothing shows that they favor accessibility to marijuana, and everything points to their opposition. However, investors in Big Pharmacy see the light. They remain in the market and are buying up. They see that there’s no moral high road here but there is money for Big Pharma in cannabis.“No pharmacy company is interested in making cheaper medicine,” Brian Chaplin, founder of Medicine Box told me in a written interview. “The existing Pharma industry is more about patenting and manufacturing medicine that is a treatment plan – not a curative plan.”Chaplin argues that Big Pharma wants customers to need their products, preferably for the rest of their lives, while creating “customers” but not healing specific ailments.“This is different from a ‘whole plant’ medicine approach — where we see patients responding to the synergistic effects of multiple compounds (cannabanoids and terpenes) in the plant that are usually lacking in a pharmacy — chemically prepared product,” he continued.  Interestingly, Big Pharma playing in the fields of cannabis might, in fact, help declassify the plant. Christopher Teague of HERB writes, “Big Pharma will prove that cannabis is medicine a hundred times over, in every way, and the DEA will have to reclassify the plant itself.”According to Matt Gray, CEO and founder of HERB, “Big Pharma has already dipped its toe into cannabis treatment, with the DEA approving synthetic cannabis for pharma company, Insys.”That same company, however, also donated money to prevent cannabis legalization from occurring in Arizona. “This just proves the point that Big Pharma cares more about their bottom line than the actual treatment of patients,” he continued. “So if they find it financially beneficial, they will get involved in the industry, even if it isn’t necessarily for the right reasons.”In the end, it’s all about striking a winning balance. Trump needs a victory over high drug prices, especially as they affect Medicare Part D. Big Pharma is in a position to demand concessions. Accessibility to cannabis R&D might just be one of them. Pharmaceutical companies are intrigued by the immense and growing medical marijuana market but cannot figure a way to corner it. Cannabis August 8, 2017 –shares Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Is Big Pharma for or Against Legalizing Medical Marijuana? Maybe Both. Subscribe Nowlast_img read more

8 Ways to Increase Holiday Cheers and Minimize January Jeers

first_img Add to Queue –shares Be inclusive, be respectful, and beware of the after party. Holidays December 11, 2017 Guest Writer Image credit: Ulrik Tofte | Getty Images Jonathan Segal Partner in Employment Practice Group of Duane Morris 8 Ways to Increase Holiday Cheers and Minimize January Jeers Next Article Apply Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. The holiday season can be the most wonderful time of the year, but it also poses legal and employee relations challenges to employers of all sizes. Most of these challenges can be mitigated with some thoughtful planning. So, here’s a checklist of some of the more salient issues to consider to minimize the risk that your December celebrations will result in January claims.1. Don’t eliminate Christmas.Don’t eliminate Christmas from the holiday season, says this Jewish guy. It’s a beautiful holiday that should be celebrated. And, a Christmas tree is just fine, too!  Remember, it’s about inclusion, not exclusion. So, speaking of inclusion — what about those who don’t celebrate Christmas?Related: 6 Strategic Ways to Prepare Your Small Business for the Festive Season2. Include other holidays.Recognize other holidays, such as Hanukkah and Kwanza, in your decorations and announcements. For example, consider a menorah and Kwanza basket along with the Christmas tree. 3. What holiday did you forget?You don’t know what you don’t know. Profound, no? So, ask. Ask employees if there is a holiday that they would like to see included in the celebration (and that includes decorations). Reminder: the Buddhist holiday of Bodhi day falls on January 5 this year.  4. What should you call your party?“Holiday party” or “Celebration of the Season” are inclusive terms. Make the party itself inclusive too by having decorations and the music reflect diverse holidays. But which decorations and songs? Those that are more religious are more appropriate for religious celebrations (or for religious employers). Fact: Springsteen’s “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” is just fine!Related: 4 Ways to Prepare Your Marketing for the Upcoming Holiday Season5. Should you serve alcohol?Never serve it to minors.  Make clear adults who get it for them will be subject to immediate discharge. As for adults, take steps to minimize abuse, such as limiting drinks, providing lots of food or even making employees pay for alcohol and then donating the money, with a match, to charity.Even with restrictions, assume some people may abuse the alcohol you serve. Consider having cab vouchers ready for them without management knowing who the users are. This increases the likelihood that those who need vouchers will use them.6. What about harassment?This is perennial problem at holiday parties. But you can bet this year employees who are subject to improper conduct appropriately will speak up. #MeToo. Remind your employees that your anti-harassment policy applies to the party. But that’s not enough. Make sure to remind managers of their responsibilities. If you are in management and you see or hear unacceptable comments or conduct, you must intervene. To see and ignore is to condone.7. What about the “after party?”To be blunt, no good comes from after parties. Unless, you consider claims arising out of the after party good. Make clear you are not sponsoring any after party, and do not allow employer money to be used for it. And, never attend if you are in management. Attending is about as safe as walking on railroad tracks.Related: Don’t Commit These 7 Party Fouls Inspired by ‘Office Christmas Party’8. What about greetings?It’s best to be general with your holiday greetings unless you know otherwise. The default should be “Happy Holidays.” But if you know someone is Christian, by all means wish that person a Merry Christmas. I do, and I appreciate it when people wish me a “Happy Hanukkah” because they know I am Jewish. I am less thrilled if they are making assumptions. When addressing groups, be as inclusive as you can be, as I shall try to do now: If you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa, I wish you a peaceful and meaningful holiday that corresponds with your faith. If you observe another holiday now, I apologize for not referencing it by name, but I give you my good wishes just the same, as I do for those who recognize no holidays or who celebrate at another time of year. May peace be with all! And, please, be good to each other. 4 min read The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. 2019 Entrepreneur 360 Listlast_img read more