Moonshine or the Kids?

first_imgNew York Times 22 May 2010There’s an ugly secret of global poverty, one rarely acknowledged by aid groups or U.N. reports. It’s a blunt truth that is politically incorrect, heartbreaking, frustrating and ubiquitous:It’s that if the poorest families spent as much money educating their children as they do on wine, cigarettes and prostitutes, their children’s prospects would be transformed. Much suffering is caused not only by low incomes, but also by shortsighted private spending decisions by heads of households.That probably sounds sanctimonious, haughty and callous, but it’s been on my mind while traveling through central Africa with a college student on my annual win-a-trip journey. Here in this Congolese village of Mont-Belo, we met a bright fourth grader, Jovali Obamza, who is about to be expelled from school because his family is three months behind in paying fees. (In theory, public school is free in the Congo Republic. In fact, every single school we visited charges fees.)We asked to see Jovali’s parents. The dad, Georges Obamza, who weaves straw stools that he sells for $1 each, is unmistakably very poor. He said that the family is eight months behind on its $6-a-month rent and is in danger of being evicted, with nowhere to go.The Obamzas have no mosquito net, even though they have already lost two of their eight children to malaria. They say they just can’t afford the $6 cost of a net. Nor can they afford the $2.50-a-month tuition for each of their three school-age kids.“It’s hard to get the money to send the kids to school,” Mr. Obamza explained, a bit embarrassed.READ MORE: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/23/opinion/23kristof.htmllast_img read more

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Local law enforcement respond to a multiple vehicle accident

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisOSSINEKE,Mich.— Michigan State Police responded to a semi-truck accident Tuesday afternoon which left a chemical spill on U-S 23. According to MSP Sergeant Shane Smith, two vehicles were traveling northbound on U-S 23 in Ossineke when the first vehicle stopped to make a turn onto Piper Road.The driver of a semi–truck traveling in the same direction did not see the stopped cars which resulted in the driver crashing into both vehicles. The semi–truck driver ended up going off the road then swerving back across the center line and into a ditch on the opposite end of the road.Three tow trucks were needed to pull the semi–trailer from the ditch while a state hazmat team headed the spill clean up. No injuries were reported in the accident.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisContinue ReadingPrevious Pets of the WeekNext New online map of free WI-Fi hotspots helps residents lacking internet accesslast_img read more

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Black Sox to hold first two practices this week

first_imgThe Fort St. John Black Sox will be cleaning up their cleats and gloves as they start preparations for the upcoming Wheatbelt Baseball League season. The team will be at the Kid’s Arena Fieldhouse today for their first practice and will return on Friday for a second.Player/coach Ryan Stickel will have the players working on basic fundamentals to start.“For the most part tonight will be just stretching your arm out, taking a little bit of ground balls, and maybe swinging the bat a little bit just lightly.”- Advertisement -Tonight’s session will begin at 9:30, and Friday’s will be at 8:30.As of now Stickel expects to have 16 players taking part however more are welcome to join the team. Anyone interested in playing baseball for the Sox can call him at 250-793-0581, or simply show up at the Kid’s Arena Fieldhouse today or Friday.A schedule for this season hasn’t been formally released but it’s expected the Sox will open at home on May 14.Advertisementlast_img read more

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Raiders mailbag: What should fans expect next after first win?

first_imgOne down, a lot more to go if the Raiders want to become relevant again in the NFL landscape.After squeaking out a 45-42 overtime win against the Browns for Jon Gruden’s first win in almost 10 years, the Raiders fly south to face the Chargers on Sunday.Here are the answers to your mailbag questions. Some good ones from you guys against this week. Keep ’em [email protected]: Who gets the axe when Worley gets back? My guess is Shilique Calhoun since it’s been proven he can clear …last_img

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Earth’s Core Values Questioned

first_imgGeologists have long assumed that iron attracted certain elements toward the earth’s core during its formation.  The amounts of them we find today were added by meteorites and comets as a veneer on the surface later.  A press release from Florida State University is questioning those core values.  New research “calls into question three decades of conventional wisdom regarding some of the physical processes that helped shape the Earth as we know it today.”    Munir Humayun, an associate professor of geology, did experiments on palladium at high temperatures and pressures using NASA equipment.  His team found that at these extreme conditions, thought to mimic those 300 miles down in the mantle, the distribution of palladium in both rock and metal was the same – no partitioning had occurred.    The iron, descending toward the center of the earth toward the core, was supposed to pull in certain “siderophile” (iron-loving) elements with it – gold, platinum, palladium, and iridium.  Since these elements are found at earth’s surface today, they must have been delivered during a late bombardment of comets and meteors.  That has been the conventional wisdom:“For 30 years, the late-veneer hypothesis has been the dominant paradigm for understanding Earth’s early history, and our ultimate origins,” Humayun said.  “Now, with our latest research, we’re suggesting that the late-veneer hypothesis may not be the only way of explaining the presence of certain elements in the Earth’s crust and mantle.”Why did he say this affects views of our ultimate origins?  The presumed late-heavy bombardment “also would have brought in water, carbon and other materials essential for life, the oceans and the atmosphere.”    These experiments, therefore, could have a ripple effect on other fields, including planetary science and biology.  The press release calls the potential ramifications of the research significant.  “This work will have important consequences for geologists’ thinking about core formation, the core’s present relation to the mantle, and the bombardment history of the early Earth,” Humayan said; “It also could lead us to rethink the origins of life on our planet.”  Astrobiology Magazine took note of this announcement.Everything secular astronomers, geologists and evolutionary biologists claim about the history of life on earth is tied into a complex web of belief – a phrase coined by philosopher of science William Van Orman Quine.  In Two Dogmas of Empiricism in 1951 (11 years before Thomas Kuhn brought “paradigm shift” into common parlance), Quine argued that scientists rarely abandon a web of belief in the face of falsifying data.  They absorb the blows by modifying the web of belief in other areas.  So will this announcement begin unraveling the web?  Unlikely.  The spiders are well trained at spinning repairs.    Some might respond by questioning the relevance of experiments using equipment on the surface to conditions in the real mantle.  But what alternative experiment would a critic propose?  Digging a 300-mile deep hole and running experiments down there?    The interior of the earth is a good example of a “scientific object” that can only be studied indirectly.  Seismic and gravitational measurements provide first-hand data on the core and mantle, but even that data must be interpreted within models of earth’s interior.  Models are both simplifications and extensions of empirical data; simplifications, because no model can take into account all possible relevant data; and extensions, because models make claims beyond what can be experimentally validated.    These scientists were bold enough to test a key assumption in the web of belief.  They found it inconsistent.  They concluded, “the distribution of palladium and other siderophile elements in the Earth’s mantle can be explained by means other than millions of years of meteorite bombardment.”  Their results also imply that it didn’t require tens of millions of years for the siderophile elements to fall into the core.  That, in turn, implies what we find on the surface today could be primordial (i.e., present from the beginning).  If so, it has nothing to say about age.    The ramifications could, indeed, be profound.  This could threaten assumptions about differentiation processes inside other planets and moons throughout the solar system, and, consequently, their ages.  It could undermine a major prop for a key explanatory tool – the so-called “late heavy bombardment” – invoked to map out ages of planetary surfaces and the presence of volatiles on earth (particularly, earth’s oceans and atmosphere).  That, in turn, leaves evolutionists hanging about conditions on the primordial earth for the origin of life.    Secularists continue to absorb blows in their web of belief from all sides.  They make whatever adjustments to the web are necessary to hold onto their core values of naturalism and scientism.  Creationists, with different core values and a web of belief that does not exclude God, could perk up at this finding.  It’s another strand of empirical evidence that the earth was designed with its elements, atmosphere and oceans intact from the beginning – no long period of differentiation, no ad hoc rescuing device of a late heavy bombardment, and, of course, no primordial soup or special delivery of water by comets.  Some of them might point out, too, that appeals to millions of years are superfluous.(Visited 39 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Solar Energy Can Make the Grid More Resilient

first_imgIn my blog last week, I reported on The Navy Yard in Philadelphia, a remarkable 1,200-acre business campus with 300 companies employing 10,000 people — with as many as 35,000 employees projected eventually. What had attracted me to the facility while I was in town for a conference, was an innovative demonstration that’s been launched showing how solar-electric (photovoltaic) systems with battery back-up and smart controls can help to create a more resilient power grid.This week, I’ll dig a little more deeply into this system, which has been developed by the company Solar Grid Storage, LLC. How a small amount of electricity storage can boost grid resilienceOur electricity grid is a complex and hard-to-manage system. The amount of power (electricity) being generated has to be closely balanced with the amount of power being consumed (demand). Fluctuations in demand occur all the time. In the morning hours between 6 and 8 a.m., for example, a lot of people get up, turn on lights, shower, operate their coffee makers, and turn up the heat (or air conditioning); electricity demand rises significantly.One of the big challenges in managing this fluctuating demand is that most generators can’t be turned on and off quickly. You can’t just throw a switch and expect a several-hundred-megawatt generator start cranking out electricity.With renewable energy power-generation systems — particularly wind and solar — fluctuations in output provide another complication. When the wind stops blowing the output from a wind farm ceases, and when clouds obscure the sun the output of PV systems drops dramatically.Battery storage in a power grid allows electricity to be stored when more is being generated than consumed, and it allows electricity to be pulled out of storage when demand exceeds supply. The same battery bank can allow a critical loads in microgrid to remain powered when the regional grid goes down. This role of batteries in managing the output from wind and solar systems is important and will grow in significance as the percentage of our electricity supplied by renewables grows. Innovation is just beginningThe Solar Grid Storage installations are cutting-edge examples of what we can expect in the years ahead as efforts to effectively integrate renewable energy into the utility grid move forward. “Adding storage to solar projects makes them even more valuable to customers and also provides new benefits to the grid — and all ratepayers,” Solar Grid Storage CEO Tom Leyden told me. “We are proud to be part of what we believe will help usher in the grid of the future.”I believe that such innovations will demonstrate very effective synergies between solar energy (and other renewables), the goals of resilience, and the efficient operation of the power grid. It should be fun to watch! The Philadelphia Navy Yard is Repurposed Getting Power From Solar Equipment When the Grid is DownMaking the Case for Resilient DesignIt Takes a Village to Be ResilientMaking Houses Resilient to Power OutagesResilient Communities Designing Homes and Communities That Can Survive a Disaster The emergence of microgridsWith more intense storms, wildfires, terrorist actions, and other events causing widespread power outages — and likely to cause increasingly common outages in the future, according to many experts — there is growing demand for creating islandable “microgrids.”Microgrids are small to moderate-size power grids, often serving university or medical campuses, that have the capability to be isolated from the regional power grid in the event of a widespread outage. Such systems must have their own generation capacity along with sophisticated electricity management systems. More than fifty military bases have created, or are in the process of creating, microgrids. Military facilities have to maintain operability, even if widespread outages occur, so they are a natural for microgrids. Some universities and hospital complexes have also created microgrids, and the State of Connecticut, heavily hit by Superstorm Sandy, Tropical Storm Irene, and a freak October snowstorm in 2011, has passed legislation to create demonstration microgrids in eight cities.Another advantage of microgrids is that the small-scale power generation needed for such systems takes place close to where the power is being used, so if there is waste heat created in the generation process (as occurs with generators that use steam turbines or fuel cells), that heat can be captured and productively used — an approach referred to as cogeneration or combined heat and power (CHP). Solar Grid StorageBased in Philadelphia, with a few other offices spread around the Northeast, Solar Grid Storage offers a modular system for managing the output of PV arrays and storing power to better balance the output and power availability from large, grid-connected PV systems.Advanced lithium-ion batteries are used in this system. This technology avoids the use of heavy metals like lead and cadmium that are used in other batteries. The technology also allows deep discharge without wearing out the batteries and very rapid recharging — though cost is an issue.The business model for Solar Grid Storage is that the owner of a large PV array would own just the actual array, and Solar Grid Storage would own the inverter, battery system, and other equipment needed to manage the system. These components come packaged in a 20-foot container, which the company (confusingly) trademarked as PowerFactor (at least it’s confusing to those of us who have been trying for years to fully understand what power factor means).The battery bank and controls allow the system to take over instantaneously in the event of a regional power outage.One of the first four of these systems has been installed at The Navy Yard, and my colleagues and I got a chance to tour this facility. This PowerFactor250 system includes a 250-kW inverter and has 125 kWh of battery storage. Being modular, it is shipped directly to the site and can be hooked up quickly.Another, larger PowerFactor system was installed in October, 2013 in Laurel, Maryland for the real estate developer Konterra. That PowerFactor500 system manages power from a 402-kW solar array that is integrated with parking lot canopies, and it includes 300 kWh of battery storage (though 250 kWh would be more typical with the 500 kW inverter). It includes critical loads power that can provide 50 kW of electricity for just over four hours — or more when the sun is shining and generating power. RELATED ARTICLES Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. In 2012 he founded the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed.last_img read more

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10 months agoKlopp tells Liverpool fans to forget world-record purchases

first_imgKlopp tells Liverpool fans to forget world-record purchasesby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveJurgen Klopp insists Liverpool will not be able to compete “constantly” in the transfer market.The Reds spent over £200m in 2018 to bring in Alisson, Virgil van Dijk, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri. Both van Dijk and Alisson were bought with world-record fees for their respective positions.According to Klopp, those purchases were only made possible by equally big sales, such as Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona. And the German has urged fans not accept as them future norm.”We cannot do that constantly [spending big on players] and we will not do that constantly,” Klopp told Sky Sports. “The good thing was that, like most things in life, the timing was important. We had the money and the players were on the market. We didn’t know exactly when Alisson was on the market and when it was clear that he was, we had to, even if we had to collect money somewhere.”With the Neymar transfer, the whole world changed. Could I have expected someone would have made the move from Barcelona to PSG for that money? No. But then, we had a bit of that money because of Phil [Coutinho] so what do we do? We don’t build houses, we invest in this club and invest in players. The money was there so let’s use it in the smartest way and that’s what we did.”Since I’ve been here, we’ve always sold players and bought players because that’s how it is. I don’t know what our net spend is at the end, but we bought fantastic players in. Like Gini Wijnaldum, what a player he is. We bought him from Newcastle, playing left-wing or whatever so that’s really nice. So really good signings and two for really big money.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Photos: Ohio State Groom Marries Michigan Bride In The Big House

first_imgOhio State fans holding Go Bucks signs during a football game.INDIANAPOLIS, IN – DECEMBER 02: Fans of the Ohio State Buckeyes cheer as they take on the Wisconsin Badgers during the Big Ten Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)How many die-hard Ohio State football fans have gotten married at Michigan’s Big House? Well, at least one. ESPN is reporting that Mike and Stephanie Stout got hitched recently and held their reception at the Wolverines’ football stadium, despite the obvious rivalry between the two fan bases. While it would appear that Stephanie won the overall argument, Mike certainly did all he could to make the wedding feature both schools.The photos, produced by E. C. Campbell Photography, show Mike spelling out O-H-I-O in Michigan’s tunnel. He also had his groomsmen wear Ohio State socks and grey tuxedos. Finally, there were Buckeyes koozies and pom-poms for each guest.When an Ohio State groom marries a Michigan bride and the reception is at the Big House … [Credit: E.C. Campbell Photography]A photo posted by espn (@espn) on Jul 31, 2015 at 8:08am PDT(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = “//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3”; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));A fun feature on ESPN today. 🙂 #lovewinsPosted by E.C. Campbell Photography on Friday, July 31, 2015(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = “//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3”; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));What happens when a Buckeye fan falls in love with a Wolverine fan? Check out Mike and Stephanie’s wedding day to find…Posted by E.C. Campbell Photography on Thursday, July 30, 2015You can check out all of the photos over at the photographer’s website. Ohio State fans – is this acceptable?last_img read more

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Doubts greet Macron letter to quell French yellow vest anger

first_imgPARIS — Yellow vest protesters and political rivals say a sweeping “letter to the French” from President Emmanuel Macron doesn’t go far enough to quell national anger at his policies.Macron’s letter explains how he’s addressing the movement’s concerns through a “grand debate” in local meetings around the country starting Tuesday. The debate will focus on taxes, public services, climate change and democracy.Yellow vest representative Jeremy Clement told BFM television Monday that the letter “settles part of the problem” but doesn’t go far enough to address sinking purchasing power.Protester Jerome Rodrigues told CNews television that Macron failed to recognize “the urgency” of concerns of low-income workers and retirees.Others criticized Macron for ruling out a restoration of France’s wealth tax. Opposition lawmakers also criticized the letter.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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BC Agricultural Critic visits Peace Region to hear farmers concerns

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – B.C. Agricultural Critic MLA Ian Paton joined local MLA Dan Davies on a two-day visit to tour the agricultural scene of the Peace Region.During Paton’s visit, they attended the B.C. Grain Producers’ Annual General Meeting, and a crop tour on Thursday, July 25, followed by a visit with local farmers on Friday, July 26.Being a farmer himself, Paton shares similar concerns with farmers when it comes to the Agricultural Land Commission; more specifically land rights. Paton feels that in order for the industry to thrive into the future, the Government needs to give farmers their land rights back in order for them to make the decisions as to what is best for their own land.According to Paton, the NDP Government has introduced a couple of bills that prevent farmers from making land decisions.“The NDP Government has brought two bills forward, last Fall Bill-52 and this was Spring Bill-15. What they’re doing is they’re giving way more control and power to the State, where the Agricultural Land Commission is now controlling what you can do on your farm, the size of house you can build on your farm. They’re starting to turn away the opportunities for farmers to have a second home on the farm… I’m a believer that if you want the next generation to take an active role in the farm, you’ve got to give the family members an opportunity to live on the farm.”Paton says Bill-15 has taken away the opportunity for landowners, within the Agricultural Land Reserve, to have the ability to go directly to the ALC to make an application to exclude land.Paton also suggests that Regional Panels need to be reintroduced in order to get an “on-the-ground” look at farming across the Province.last_img read more

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