first_imgPeoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader Khursheed Alam was released on a parole for just three hours on Wednesday to attend the last rites of his younger brother Shahnawaz Alam, who died of lung cancer on Tuesday evening.An official said the former employees union leader who joined the PDP a few years ago, was shifted from the Centaur Lake View hotel, a designated sub-jail, on Wednesday morning to attend the last rites here.“Mr. Alam was escorted by a posse of security personnel to Khanyar and was again whisked away after the burial. We expected the State government to release him for at least four days so that he could participate in all the congregational prayers to be offered,” a relative said on the condition of anonymity.A police official said the agencies were “weighing the options to release him again to attend the congregational prayers”.Mr. Alam was among 179 political leaders arrested in the crackdown launched on the mainstream leaders in J&K before the Centre revoked J&K’s special status.last_img read more

first_imgKyrie Irving of the Boston Celtics reacts to the referees during the game against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on November 6, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images/AFPATLANTA — Kyrie Irving took charge in a fashion only he can.Dribbling and weaving through the lane and around the perimeter, Irving scored from all over and kept his teammates involved all night.ADVERTISEMENT “It would’ve been sweet to win two in a row against those kinds of teams,” Schroder said. “But we ended upshort.”Boston improved to 9-2, best in the NBA, and has its longest winning streak in seven years.Al Horford had 15 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists in his best game against the Hawks. Horford spent his first nine seasons in Atlanta before leaving as a free agent ahead of last season and had totals of 20 points and 17 rebounds in three games against his former team.Irving had his first 30-point game as a Celtic on a night packed with highlights. He dribbled between his legs and behind his back before hitting a floater off the glass from the left baseline to put Boston up 46-44. He had two impressive assists late in the third with long, one-handed passes that led to 3s by Marcus Smart and Tatum, the latter giving Boston a 72-71 lead.Irving either scored or assisted on every basket of a 16-2 run in the third that put the Celtics up by seven. He finished with seven assists.ADVERTISEMENT “He’s just very unique,” Horford said. “He has a good sense of how teams are playing him.”The Celtics started to pull away and took their biggest lead at 10 on Semi Ojeleye’s 3 early in the fourth, but the Hawks came back to take a few brief leads in the final period.“To compete the way we did and give ourselves a chance to win, we got better tonight and we can learn from it,” Atlanta coach Mike Budenhozler said.THAT’S A DRAGBoston coach Brad Stevens wasn’t pleased with the ball movement or defense early in the third, storming the floor to call timeout after Atlanta’s Luke Babbit hit a 3 to put the Hawks up 57-54.“You could just tell mentally and physically we were dragging a little bit,” Irving said. “That’s going to happen sometimes considering how hard we play, but we don’t want to make that a habit for us. No excuse.”RAINING DOWNBudenholzer joked before the game that he regretted having his assistants work with the 6-foot-10 Horford a couple of years ago to develop a strong presence beyond the perimeter. Horford, who went just 1 for 5 on 3s, entered the game shooting nearly 52 percent on 33 attempts from the arc.“I think there was just a real push from us and a credit to him that he could do it,” Budenholzer said.“It’s part of the way the game is, and his passing just opens up the court even more for him to drive and attack. He’s such a good player, such a smart player.”TIP-INSCeltics: Irving has scored more points — 245 — than any player in his first 11 games with Boston. … With Marcus Morris getting the night off to rest his sore left knee, Aron Baynes started at center and finished with just two points and three rebounds in 15 minutes. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding LATEST STORIES Read Next Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Gamescenter_img QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Kevin Durant, Warriors overcome shooting woes to beat Heat MOST READ “It’s a beautiful game when it’s played the right way,” the four-time All-Star said. “It’s not going to look good every possession, but you’ve got to be able to move onto the next play. I understand that better than most.”Irving scored 35 points, Jayson Tatum added 21 and the Boston Celtics held off the Atlanta Hawks 110-107 Monday night for their ninth straight victory.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutIrving’s 3 from the right wing put the Celtics up 104-103 — the game’s 25th lead change — with 1:37 remaining, and Boston led the rest of the way.Dennis Schroder had 23 points for the rebuilding Hawks, who dropped to 2-9 a night after a surprising two-point win at Cleveland. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Hawks: Malcolm Delaney returned after missing two games with a sprained right ankle and had 13 points. Marco Belinelli scored 19 despite a sore left Achilles.UP NEXTCeltics: Host the Lakers on Wednesday night.Hawks: Off until they visit Detroit on Friday night. Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion View commentslast_img read more

first_img* A week and a half until the 2004 State of Origin and Interstate Challenge, we’re certainly looking forward to the games of touch and talent on display, keep an eye on our website for results and stories, they’ll be uploaded during the tournament. The Australian 20 years squads will be looking for Youth World Cup selection on the same weekend, they’ll take part in a final selection camp following the State of Origin/Interstate Challenge series. * The 10th Australian Masters Games are being held in Adelaide from October 7-16. The touch played at last year’s games was great, let’s see what this year brings. * The player profiles of our National Training Squad are finally complete! Head to the links for `Team Profiles’ for an interesting read. * Just so everyone is aware, the Local/State/International touch websites can be accessed through our own ATA website. Use the `Local’, `State’ and `International’ links in the top right hand corner of the home page to find the association and contact details you’re looking for! * A reminder to all accredited coaches, you’re accreditation is only recognised and active for four years! After this time you will need to fulfill the update requirements as detailed by the ATA. The re-registration form can be found on the My Club Touch website, www.myclubtouch.com.au under `Downloads’ then `Data Files’ then `Coach’s Code of Ethics and Agreement form’. Print this form and then return it with payment to the Australian Touch Association, PO Box 9078, Deakin ACT 2600. The cost of re-registration is $16.20, if you believe this is relevant to you, please begin this process immediately, we want all our coaches to be active and accredited! * A new concept is being tried by New South Wales Touch Association this week. The Western Suburbs Magpies will host a home fixture against the Cronulla Sharks. The Magpies and Sharks will fight it out across the Mens, Womens and Mixed Open divisions. A presentation night will be held after the matches, check out NSW touch for more info. * Over 160 junior Touch players participated in the start of the ACT’s first winter junior competition on Monday nights. This is a great response for junior touch in the ACT! * Touch SA is looking for Mens Open and Senior Mens players interested in playing at the Australia Cup from October 7-9. Trials are being held on August 7-8, see the full article on Touch SA’s website for all the details you’ll need to know. * Victoria and ACT touch have both released their July editions of State Newsletters. Both are filled with details of events, information, facts and touch happenings for those states. These newsletters are a great resource for state information, have a look at their website for a good read. * Last week it was congratulations to the Uni of Canberra who dominated the touch competition at the Eastern University Games, this week the honour goes to Monash University…Monash Uni grabbed the Mens and Womens Open titles at the Southern University Games, while Adelaide Uni (led by Touch SA employees Adrian Sim and Jeremy Smith) grabbed the title in the Mixed division. * Congratulations to Kerry Disney who has been appointed as Victoria’s State Director of Referees. The VTA wishes to offer their thanks to Steve Decker who devoted his time and effort to the job in recent years. * A big `nice work’ must go to TouchWest who have added `The Clubhouse’ to their homepage. It is a link listing all local associations, very easy to access and right on their front page! While it is still under construction it is definitely a great tool for touch players throughout WA! By Rachel Moyle, media@austouch.com.aulast_img

first_imgThis single sided pull up banner contains pictures of all levels of touch from juniors to elite. It stands at 1200mm x 2000mm and is ideal for use at tournaments, functions and special events.Normally priced at $220 (including GST) + freight, it is currently available for a limited time to order for just $121 (including GST) + freight.To recieve this limited offer orders must be received by COB Friday 13th April 2007.For more information or to order please contact Tara Stanford on 02 6212 2800last_img read more

first_imgESPN Analyst Names Sleeper Team In The SEC In 2018The team with the best chance of going undefeated this fall is not the team appearing No. 1 in most preseason polls. According to ESPN’s Football Power Index (the “best predictor of a team’s performance”), Oklahoma – not Alabama – is the team most-likely to go undefeated heading into bowl season. While the Crimson Tide are the likely preseason No. 1, it’s the Sooners with the best chance of reaching the College Football Playoff. Here’s the full top 10:Oklahoma – 16.9 percent chance of going undefeated before bowl seasonFlorida State – 10.6 percentClemson – 8.6 percentBoise State – 8 percentMichigan – 5.8 percentLSU – 5.3 percentTennessee – 4.5 percentOklahoma State – 2.4 percentWashington – 1.4 percentNotre Dame – 1.2 percentSome other notable percentages: Alabama – 0.6 percentOhio State – 0.4 percentNebraska – 0.4 percentMichigan State – 0.1 percentOle Miss – 0.1 percentYou can view ESPN’s full FPI here.last_img read more

first_imgWASHINGTON – U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic than they have in nearly two decades.The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Monday rose five points to 74 this month. That’s the highest reading since July of 1999, more than 18 years ago.Readings above 50 indicate more builders see sales conditions as good rather than poor. The index has remained above 60 since September of 2016.The index exceeded the expectations of analysts surveyed by FactSet, who expected a reading of 70.All three components of the index rose in December. The reading gauging builders’ view of single-family home sales rose four points to 81, while the outlook for sales over the next six months ticked up three points to 79. The measure of traffic by prospective buyers jumped eight points to 58.The Commerce Department reported late last month that Americans bought new homes in October at the fastest pace in a decade — a 6.2 per cent monthly increase — reflecting a strong economy but also a worsening shortage of existing homes for sale.New home sales last month rose to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 685,000, the third straight monthly gain and the best sales clip since October 2007.Many buyers are turning to new construction due to an ongoing dearth of existing homes for sale. However, new construction has been unable to keep up with demand.Potential buyers are searching for homes amid a healthy job market with a 4.1 per cent unemployment rate and attractive 30-year mortgage rates that are averaging less than 4 per cent.last_img read more

first_imgVICTORIA – British Columbia’s minority government moved to change its key housing policy legislation on Thursday in an effort to win the support of the three members of the Green party.The amendments came just 48 hours after the speculation and vacancy tax was introduced in the legislature.Finance Minister Carole James and Green Leader Andrew Weaver said during a joint news conference that the three amendments to the proposed speculation tax will soon be tabled to ensure the law passes this fall.James introduced the tax bill Tuesday saying the government wanted to cool the real estate market and convince owners of vacant B.C. homes to either sell or rent their properties.“Because housing affordability is at a crisis and people are calling for a solution, I think you can see that as a government, and with our partners in the Green caucus, we’re committed to acting and addressing the housing affordability piece,” said James, referring to the NDP government’s 30-point housing plan.James said the Green amendments would cut the tax rate for all Canadians who own vacant properties in certain urban areas in B.C. to 0.5 per cent on assessed value from a proposed one per cent, while revenues from the tax would be directed to housing initiatives in the communities where they are collected.Foreign owners of vacant properties in B.C. will still face a two per cent tax on the home’s assessed value under the amended legislation.The changes would also establish an annual meeting between the mayors of the affected communities and the finance minister to review the tax.“Through hard work and many, many, many hours of negotiations, we’ve been able to come up with a compromise that we can both support and I will be bringing forward the amendments to this bill that addresses my key concerns,” Weaver said.The three members of the Green party reached an agreement with the NDP after the May 2017 election to support a minority government. There are 41 New Democrats, 42 Liberals, one Independent and three Greens in B.C.’s 87-seat legislature.Opposition Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson said the proposed speculation tax is fading away by the day and losing revenue.He said the cut to the tax rate will cost the government millions.“Originally, they had a two per cent tax for everybody involved,” said Wilkinson. “They dropped it for British Columbians to 0.5 per cent, which meant 75 per cent of that revenue disappeared from British Columbians. Now another 50 per cent is disappearing for all Canadians. So this is tax policy that’s just melting away like a snowman in July.”James said the government estimates a $30-million revenue reduction once the rate is cut to 0.5 per cent for all Canadians.The government originally forecast $200 million in annual revenue when the speculation tax was introduced in February’s budget as part of the NDP’s plan to create 114,000 affordable housing units over the next decade.James said Tuesday when she introduced the legislation, the goal of the tax was to improve housing affordability for thousands of people in B.C., including seniors forced to live in their vehicles and young professionals who leave the province because they can’t find a place to live.She said she rejected efforts by many municipalities to opt-out of the speculation tax. On Thursday, James said she’s now prepared to listen to their concerns and drop the tax if it’s no longer needed.“Certainly, if we start seeing more affordable housing in communities and we need to make some adjustments, then that will occur,” said James.Langford Mayor Stew Young said in a letter to James and Premier John Horgan earlier this month that he feared the tax could spark an economic downturn.Young, whose community is in Horgan’s Victoria-area riding, said the tax “will dry up investment in British Columbia and is a recipe for financial disaster.”last_img read more

first_imgTORONTO – When Mark Wlodarski started collecting bobbleheads about a decade ago, dollar signs were far from his mind.The Toronto Blue Jays, whose bobbleheads he coveted most, Wlodarski says were “just horrid” and their merchandise were hardly desirable.That changed around 2015. The Jays shot up in the standings, bolstered by newcomers Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki, who came with bobbleheads that attracted droves of collectors.The shift taught Wlodarski — the owner of about 650 bobbleheads at his collecting peak, who insists his love of the figurines is about passion not profit — plenty about how to master the collectibles market.The market can be fraught with high price tags and even higher emotions, but experts say there are tens of thousands of dollars to be to made, if you’re willing to part with high-value items like baseball cards, comics, coins, stamps and vintage film posters.They say maximizing what can be made or nabbing an item for as little as possible can be tough because it takes a mix of timing and luck.The trick to making money off collectibles, Wlodarski said, is learning how to assess a market.“You have to know when it’s time to get into any hobby, and get out of any hobby,” he said.To do that, Wlodarski keeps an eye on how teams are performing and how popular characters and other celebrities are. If a team is headed for the playoffs or a television show, movie or character are really taking off, collectibles tied to them are worth more and it’s a good time to sell, but a terrible time to buy. When that popularity is waning, there are generally better deals to be found, but if you’re selling, less money to be made.Bobbleheads given away recently at sports games or events will be plentiful and won’t command much cash, but ones from older seasons, when few were made, can be worth a pretty penny, he said.Not everything will increase in value over time though, said Stephen Ranger, the vice-president of auction and appraisal business Waddington’s.“The things your mother and your grandmother collected are not always the things that have sustained market value,” he said. “Our tastes have changed. It would be rare to find a 30-year-old who is interested in Royal Doulton figurines.”Ranger said fine wines from Bordeaux and Burgundy are proving to be quite valuable as is art from Canadian modernists including Jack Bush, Harold Town and Claude Tousignant.Other experts say many Beanie Babies, a hit with kids in the 1990s, aren’t just tiny in size, but also now in value. Many also say old-fashioned ceramics can be hit-or-miss too.If there’s an item you’re keen on nabbing, Wlodarski said it’s imperative to have a budget “or else you could go broke obtaining it.”If you’re on the selling side, Kent Sikstrom, Kijiji Canada’s community relations manager, said photos taken from multiple angles and in good lighting can increase what a seller will make when advertising on online platforms. Descriptions of the collectible with information on its age, dimensions and condition help too.Posts made on the online sales platform on or near weekends usually net more traffic because more people have time to browse on Saturday and Sunday, said Sikstrom, who collects action figures and hockey cards.If you’re selling an entire collection, Sikstrom recommended splitting up the items into separate posts because it’s harder to find someone willing to shell out for every item you have for sale.If it’s taking a while to sell something or you’re hesitant to post obscure collectibles for sale, he reminds, “There is always a collector for everything.”“One person’s trash is another one’s treasure.”last_img read more

first_imgCroatia-born Bharatanatyam danseuse Nikolina Nikoleski, who was encouraged to pursue dance forms and sports from childhood, finds to her delight that more and more Indian youngsters are taking to physical expression. “India has recently changed and is still going through changes in last 6-8 years where more youngsters are also being exposed and encouraged in physical expression,” Nikoleski, 43 said. “I see that as a very positive change and good sign. Being healthy and free in one’s body is the foundation of a good and complete life,” she said. Also Read – The Puja carnivalSpeaking about her own early practice, Nikoleski recalled: “I was born and brought up in Croatia where children from a very tender age are exposed and encouraged to pursue various dance forms and sports. Almost every child then takes this hobby very seriously.” The hobbies later translate to professional spaces, and make Croatia – with a population of close to 42 lakh people – a country with “world, Olympic and European champions in every sport”, she said. Also Read – Wave City brings special offers this NavratraShe is trained in classical ballet, contemporary dance, folk dances, flamenco, physical theatre, and yoga, apart from Bharatanatyam. Nikoleski’s quest to learn multiple dance forms took her from the small European country, where she started with gymnastics at the age of four, to the land of multiple cultures and dance forms – India. Settled in Delhi since 2005, the professional dancer-teacher has learnt Bharatanatyam in India under the tutelage of gurus Saroja Vaidyanathan, Malavika Sarukkai, as well as Shanta and V.P. Dhananjayan. Coming from the light-footed ballet tradition, it took dedicated practice for Nikoleski to master this age-old dance form, that requires the performer to do heavy footwork along with gestures and body movements. “I fell in love with Bharatanatyam because of its amazing holistic art, beautiful expression, use of all body, including facial expressions, ‘mudras’, intricate footwork, state-of-art costume and jewellery, music and ragas. “They transform and elevate one’s feelings. Most importantly, it’s storytelling of ancient spiritual scripts, and brilliantly expresses all human yearnings, longings, emotions, and inner battles,” she explained. Heading her own dance academy now, she said that learning the Indian classical has completed her as a human and as an artist. Her students performed classical ballet, contemporary and jazz at an event here last week.last_img read more

Ohio State redshirt junior guard Kam Williams (15) and sophomore guard C.J. Jackson walk down the floor late in the second half against Nebraska on Feb. 18 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Alexa Mavrogianis | Photo EditorThe NBA released a list of early entry candidates for the 2017 NBA draft on Tuesday, and among those names was Ohio State redshirt junior shooting guard Kam Williams.The fourth-year guard set career-highs across the board, averaging 30.7 minutes, 9.4 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists per game in his first season as the regular point guard while starting in 29 of his team’s 32 games. He shot .391 from the field, including a .376 success percentage from beyond the arc. Williams also led the team shooting 91.9 percent (34-for-37) from the free-throw line.Williams is the second Buckeye player on this list, joining junior center Trevor Thompson who reportedly declared for the draft on March 14. read more

first_imgThe 2018 World Cup is scheduled to take place in Russia from 14 June to 15 July 2018, after the country was awarded the hosting rights on 2 December 2010.Serbia has announced their 23-man squad for the 2018 World Cup, including several Serie A star such as Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, according to Football Italia.Coach Mladen Krstajic has named the group that will follow him to Russia for the tournament which kicks off in 13 days.Those on the list are Roma full-back Aleksandar Kolarov, Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic, Lazio midfielder Milinkovic-Savic and Torino talent Adem Ljajic.serbiaReport: Euro 2020 qualifying Group B George Patchias – September 11, 2019 Euro 2020 qualifying Group B sees Portugal and Serbia play catch up with Ukraine.While Cristiano Ronaldo broke records and his Portugal side ran out…Marija Nastasic was ruled out because of injury, with Mijat Gacinovic, Nemanja Maksimovic and Aleksandar Jovanovic cut from the long-list while Vladimir Stojkovic, Predrag Rajkovic, Marko Dmitrovic are goalkeepers.For defenders, Aleksandar Kolarov, Antonio Rukavina, Milan Rodic, Branislav Ivanovic, Uros Spajic, Milos Veljkovic, Dusko Tosic, Nikola Milenkovic will lead the team, while midfielders are Nemanja Matic, Luka Milivojevic, Marko Grujic, Dusan Tadic, Andrija Zivkovic, Filip Kostic, Nemanja Radonjic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Adem LjajicForwards are Aleksandar Mitrovic, Aleksandar Prijovic, Luka JovicThe 2018 FIFA World Cup will be the 21st FIFA World Cup, a quadrennial international football tournament contested by the men’s national teams of the member associations of FIFA.last_img read more

first_imgThe French Bayern Munich footballer feels his manager has the personality to coach a big team like the German giantsFrench midfielder Franck Ribery believes Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac has the personality to coach a team like the German Bundesliga club.And in an interview with the league’s official website, he was full of praise for the Croatian.“Things are great with [him],” said Ribery.“He takes me to one side and explains the situation. I’ve got no problem with it at all. He knows exactly how much game time to give me.”RB Leipzig, Bayern Munich, Robert LewadowskiMatch Preview: RB Leipzig vs Bayern Munich Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 RB Leipzig will have the chance to prove their title-winning capabilities when they host Bayern Munich today at 18:30 (CET).“When I get along with someone, then they can count on me,” Ribery continued.“For me, communication is the most important thing. There are things you have to talk about.”“Niko’s got the personality to coach a big team,” he added.“He’s got great qualities. You can see that in the way he leads us and talks to us. He’s analyzed all the players’ personalities in the team, knows how they tick and how he can get through to them. That’s priceless.”last_img read more

first_imgAS Roma forward Patrik Schick has rubbished rumors linking him with a loan move in January, saying “I want to show my worth”.Schick joined AS Roma in 2017 on a temporary deal for a loan fee of €5 million, with a conditional obligation to buy the player.The 22-year-old has failed to make an impact at the Giallorossi having made just 6 appearances and scored one goal this season.His lack of game time and form has led to speculations about his future and the latest transfer gossip has him being shipped out on loan in the January transfer window.Daniel Fark, Norwich City, Premier LeagueDaniel Farke, From mid-table in the Championship to the Premier League Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Norwich City manager, Daniel Farke, has taken his team from the middle of the table in the English Championship to play with the big boys in the Premier League.“It’s just conjecture,” Schick insisted, speaking to reporters at the Czech Republic training camp, as cited by Football Italia.“I’m still convinced of wanting to show my worth and make it with the Giallorossi.“I’m happy to have scored my first league goal [against Samp] and now I’m sure I’ll get more chances.“I need to play more, I’m lacking minutes.”last_img read more

first_img Related Items:deputy governor, Minimum wage, premier, washington misick Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 15 May 2015 – Hundreds, maybe thousands should begin to see changes in their paychecks today as today marks the official start of a minimum wage increase to $6.25 cents per hour. Recently Finance Minister, Hon Washington Misick shared that government workers have likely begun to see that change since April 1; which was the original implementation date. May is also the month the Premier and Deputy Governor had announced that Civil Servants would see changes in their pay after a re-grading exercise. In March media and public sector workers were told that the range of increase in pay is 21% to 67% with those working in Education getting the largest leaps; fire officers are also seeing a big boost of around 60%. Government has allotted $9 million dollars to this recurrent TCIG expense; another quarter of a million dollars is pegged for education and training opportunities. Recommended for you Bermuda swears in youngest Premier in country’s history TCI Premier Responds To Beaches’ Letter Announcing Closure Cabinet Report by Premier, His Excellency present.last_img read more

first_img Red House Records Purchased By Compass Records Group Compass Records Group Absorbs Red House Records red-house-records-purchased-compass-records-group The full roster and catalogue of the folk/Americana label will be integrated into Compass Records Group Brian HaackGRAMMYs Nov 7, 2017 – 11:43 am Over the past 34 years, Red House Records has built a reputation as a trusted source of quality folk and Americana music, having launched the early careers of multi-GRAMMY winners like Larry Campbell while supporting younger artists on the rise such as the Wailin’ Jennys and the Cactus Blossoms.As Billboard reports, representatives for Nashville-based independent label group Compass Records have announced they have finalized a deal to purchase Red House and fully integrate its roster of artists and catalogue of recordings under the Compass umbrella.Compass Records is known for its diverse stable of artists, with a catalogue of more than 600 titles and a roster that includes names such as Colin Hay (Men At Work) and Bobby Osborne (Brothers Osborne). The record group’s founders, GRAMMY-winning country/bluegrass musician Alison Brown and producer Garry West, were friends and peers of late Red House Records founder and label boss Bob Feldman for nearly twenty years prior to his death in 2006.Regarding the purchase announcement, Brown said, “It’s incredibly meaningful for us to be able to carry Red House’s legacy into the future. We are really excited to work with such a fine roster of artists and are committed to keeping Red House’s brand of folk and Americana music alive.”Singer/songwriter and Red House artist John Gorka added, “I understand the economics and I think Compass is the best place to go. Compass has a lot of artists I admire and respect, and I think Red House will be in good company.”Tom Waits, Tracy Chapman, N.W.A. Among 2018 Songwriters Hall NomineesRead more Twitter Email Facebook News last_img read more

first_imgA police officer patrols outside Masjid Al Noor mosque after Friday`s mosque attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand, on 16 March 2019. Photo: ReutersThe massacre of Muslims at New Zealand mosques on Friday demonstrated the global reach of a white nationalist movement that preaches an imagined “European” ideal, rejects immigration and shares often vicious threats over the internet.It’s leaderless, fragmented, and relies for attention on lone-wolf type attackers like the 28-year-old Australian loner who allegedly killed 49 people Friday in Christchurch, explaining in a manifesto that he wants to “crush immigration” and revenge terror attacks on Europe.But experts say it is a cohesive movement bound together online that stretches across Europe into Russia, has a deep following in the US and Canada, and as Friday’s attack showed, is present in Australia and New Zealand.They say it poses as much of an international threat as Islamic extremism, and even more so in the United States where white nationalist attacks have outpaced those by jihadists for years.Flowers and signs are seen at a memorial as tributes to victims of the mosque attacks near Linwood mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, on 16 March 2019. Photo: Reuters“White nationalism and far-right extremism is the most prominent extremist threat facing the United States today, and indeed it is a worldwide phenomenon,” said Brian Levin, director of the Centre for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.”These folks fear demographic change. They use the term white genocide,” he said.Roots in 1930s, 1940sThe white nationalist movement has roots in concepts espoused decades ago by European and American fascists and neo-Nazis.French historian Nicolas Lebourg noted that the Christchurch suspect’s manifesto cited British 1930s fascist Oswald Mosley, who developed the idea of a planet organised by race.His use of the word “Europeans” for whites was first promoted in the late 1940s by American neo-Nazi Francis Parker Yockey.”White genocide” is an idea that appeared around 1972 in the United States, Lebourg noted, and was then popularised in Europe by French writer Renaud Camus.Indeed, the suspect’s manifesto was titled “The Great Replacement,” the title of a 2011 book by Camus, popular in white nationalist circles, that argued that non-white immigrants are supplanting white Europeans.People write on a sign at a memorial as a tribute to victims of the mosque attacks, near a police line outside Masjid Al Noor in Christchurch, New Zealand, on 16 March 2019. Photo: ReutersBut their ideas are not uniform — some white nationalists are anti-Muslim, some anti-Jewish, some capitalist, others socialist.What unites them today, analysts say, is their fundamental opposition to immigration.Vanderbilt University professor Sophie Bjork-James said a common fear was that white Christians could become minorities in societies they have dominated for centuries.This has given rise to movements like the France-rooted “Identitarians,” and Identity Evropa in the United States.White nationalists have been further emboldened by the rise of politicians espousing traditionalist views and a tough line on immigration — from Marine Le Pen in France and Viktor Orban in Hungary to Russian president Vladimir Putin; and the UKIP party in Britain.The same holds true in the United States where president Donald Trump campaigned for the White House on an anti-immigration platform, backed by an overwhelmingly white voter base.Trump notoriously appeared to sanction the march by white supremacists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, and has avoided condemning violence from the far-right.Bjork-James said, “They see him as an incredible opportunity to broaden their influence.”The Christchurch suspect called Trump “a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose.”While he was swift to condemn the massacre, Trump courted controversy once again on Friday by saying he did not think it showed white nationalism to be a growing problem worldwide.”I don’t really. I think it’s a small group of people,” he told reporters in the Oval Office.’Lone wolf strategy’Bjork-James said the internet, especially sites like GAB and Stormfront, have helped build a global community for the otherwise disparate white nationalists.”Stormfront is a global clearinghouse for white nationalism,” she said.It was filled with comments early Friday on the Christchurch attack, with some questioning the murder of women and children.One commenter rejected the debate, she noted, by saying chillingly: “Invaders are not innocent people.”People react after placing flowers at a memorial as a tribute to victims of the mosque attacks, near a police line outside Masjid Al Noor in Christchurch, New Zealand, on 16 March 2019. Photo: ReutersShe said overall the movement operates consciously as a “leaderless resistance,” whose members aimed to inspire each other into action.”The lone-wolf attack is actually a part of a global strategy,” said Bjork-James.The Christchurch suspect wrote that he took inspiration from other white nationalists who undertook mass killings.He cited Anders Breivik, who slaughtered 77 people in Norway in 2011; Dylann Roof, who killed nine African-Americans in a US church in 2015; Alexandre Bissonnette, who murdered six in a 2017 attack on a Canadian mosque; and others like them.But Lebourg said that attacks more recently appear to have become part of a cycle of revenge, especially since the jihadist bombings that targeted France in 2015.The suspect’s manifesto supports that: he cites revenge for historical events and recent Islamic extremist attacks multiple times.The 2015 attacks were “a tipping point for all the supremacists,” Lebourg said. “Now revenge is in people’s heads.”last_img

first_imgSince Rust 1.0 has a great macro system, it allows us to apply some code to multiple types or expressions, as they work by expanding themselves at compile time. This means that when you use a macro, you are effectively writing a lot of code before the actual compilation starts. This has two main benefits, first, the codebase can be easier to maintain by being smaller and reusing code. Second, since macros expand before starting the creation of object code, you can abstract at the syntactic level. In this article, we’ll learn how to create our very own macros in Rust. This Rust tutorial is an extract from Rust High Performance, authored by Iban Eguia Moraza. For example, you can have a function like this one: fn add_one(input: u32) -> u32 { input + 1} This function restricts the input to u32 types and the return type to u32. We could add some more accepted types by using generics, which may accept &u32 if we use the Add trait. Macros allow us to create this kind of code for any element that can be written to the left of the + sign and it will be expanded differently for each type of element, creating a different code for each case. To create a macro, you will need to use a macro built into the language, the macro_rules!{} macro. This macro receives the name of the new macro as a first parameter and a block with the macro code as a second element. The syntax can be a bit complex the first time you see it, but it can be learned quickly. Let’s start with a macro that does just the same as the function we saw before: macro_rules! add_one { ($input:expr) => { $input + 1 }} You can now call that macro from your main() function by calling add_one!(integer);. Note that the macro needs to be defined before the first call, even if it’s in the same file. It will work with any integer, which wasn’t possible with functions. Let’s analyze how the syntax works. In the block after the name of the new macro (add_one), we can see two sections. In the first part, on the left of the =>, we see $input:expr inside parentheses. Then, to the right, we see a Rust block where we do the actual addition. The left part works similarly (in some ways) to a pattern match. You can add any combination of characters and then some variables, all of them starting with a dollar sign ($) and showing the type of variable after a colon. In this case, the only variable is the $input variable and it’s an expression. This means that you can insert any kind of expression there and it will be written in the code to the right, substituting the variable with the expression. Creating Macro variants As you can see, it’s not as complicated as you might think. As I wrote, you can have almost any pattern to the left of the macro_rules!{} side. Not only that, you can also have multiple patterns, as if it were a match statement, so that if one of them matches, it will be the one expanded. Let’s see how this works by creating a macro which, depending on how we call it, will add one or two to the given integer: macro_rules! add { {one to $input:expr} => ($input + 1); {two to $input:expr} => ($input + 2);} fn main() {println!(“Add one: {}”, add!(one to 25/5));println!(“Add two: {}”, add!(two to 25/5));} You can see a couple of clear changes to the macro. First, we swapped braces for parentheses and parentheses for braces in the macro. This is because in a macro, you can use interchangeable braces ({ and }), square brackets ([ and ]), and parentheses (( and )). Not only that, you can use them when calling the macro. You have probably already used the vec![] macro and the format!() macro, and we saw the lazy_static!{} macro in the last chapter. We use brackets and parentheses here just for convention, but we could call the vec!{} or the format![] macros the same way, because we can use braces, brackets, and parentheses in any macro call. The second change was to add some extra text to our left-hand side patterns. We now call our macro by writing the text one to or two to, so I also removed the one redundancy to the macro name and called it add!(). This means that we now call our macro with literal text. That is not valid Rust, but since we are using a macro, we modify the code we are writing before the compiler tries to understand actual Rust code and the generated code is valid. We could add any text that does not end the pattern (such as parentheses or braces) to the pattern. The final change was to add a second possible pattern. We can now add one or two and the only difference will be that the right side of the macro definition must now end with a trailing semicolon for each pattern (the last one is optional) to separate each of the options. A small detail that I also added in the example was when calling the macro in the main() function. As you can see, I could have added one or two to 5, but I wrote 25/5 for a reason. When compiling this code, this will be expanded to 25/5 + 1 (or 2, if you use the second variant). This will later be optimized at compile time, since it will know that 25/5 + 1 is 6, but the compiler will receive that expression, not the final result. The macro system will not calculate the result of the expression; it will simply copy in the resulting code whatever you give to it and then pass it to the next compiler phase. You should be especially careful with this when a macro you are creating calls another macro. They will get expanded recursively, one inside the other, so the compiler will receive a bunch of final Rust code that will need to be optimized. Issues related to this were found in the CLAP crate that we saw in the last chapter, since the exponential expansions were adding a lot of bloat code to their executables. Once they found out that there were too many macro expansions inside the other macros and fixed it, they reduced the size of their binary contributions by more than 50%. Macros allow for an extra layer of customization. You can repeat arguments more than once. This is common, for example, in the vec![] macro, where you create a new vector with information at compile time. You can write something like vec![3, 4, 76, 87];. How does the vec![] macro handle an unspecified number of arguments? Creating Complex macros We can specify that we want multiple expressions in the left-hand side pattern of the macro definition by adding a * for zero or more matches or a + for one or more matches. Let’s see how we can do that with a simplified my_vec![] macro: macro_rules! my_vec { ($($x: expr),*) => {{ let mut vector = Vec::new(); $(vector.push($x);)* vector }}} Let’s see what is happening here. First, we see that on the left side, we have two variables, denoted by the two $ signs. The first makes reference to the actual repetition. Each comma-separated expression will generate a $x variable. Then, on the right side, we use the various repetitions to push $x to the vector once for every expression we receive. There is another new thing on the right-hand side. As you can see, the macro expansion starts and ends with a double brace instead of using only one. This is because, once the macro gets expanded, it will substitute the given expression for a new expression: the one that gets generated. Since what we want is to return the vector we are creating, we need a new scope where the last sentence will be the value of the scope once it gets executed. You will be able to see it more clearly in the next code snippet. We can call this code with the main() function: fn main() { let my_vector = my_vec![4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42]; println!(“Vector test: {:?}”, my_vector);} It will be expanded to this code: fn main() { let my_vector = { let mut vector = Vec::new(); vector.push(4); vector.push(8); vector.push(15); vector.push(16); vector.push(23); vector.push(42); vector }; println!(“Vector test: {:?}”, my_vector);} As you can see, we need those extra braces to create the scope that will return the vector so that it gets assigned to the my_vector binding. You can have multiple repetition patterns on the left expression and they will be repeated for every use, as needed on the right. macro_rules! add_to_vec { ($( $x:expr; [ $( $y:expr ),* ]);* ) => { &[ $($( $x + $y ),*),* ] }} In this example, the macro can receive one or more $x; [$y1, $y2,…] input. So, for each input, it will have one expression, then a semicolon, then a bracket with multiple sub-expressions separated by a comma, and finally, another bracket and a semicolon. But what does the macro do with this input? Let’s check to the right-hand side of it. As you can see, this will create multiple repetitions. We can see that it creates a slice (&[T]) of whatever we feed to it, so all the expressions we use must be of the same type. Then, it will start iterating over all $x variables, one per input group. So if we feed it only one input, it will iterate once for the expression to the left of the semicolon. Then, it will iterate once for every $y expression associated with the $x expression, add them to the + operator, and include the result in the slice. If this was too complex to understand, let’s look at an example. Let’s suppose we call the macro with 65; [22, 34] as input. In this case, 65 will be $x, and 22, 24, and so on will be $y variables associated with 65. So, the result will be a slice like this: &[65+22, 65+34]. Or, if we calculate the results: &[87, 99]. If, on the other hand, we give two groups of variables by using 65; [22, 34]; 23; [56, 35] as input, in the first iteration, $x will be 65, while in the second one, it will be 23. The $y variables of 64 will be 22 and 34, as before, and the ones associated with 23 will be 56 and 35. This means that the final slice will be &[87, 99, 79, 58], where 87 and 99 work the same way as before and 79 and 58 are the extension of adding 23 to 56 and 23 to 35. This gives you much more flexibility than the functions, but remember, all this will be expanded during compile time, which can make your compilation time much slower and the final codebase larger and slower still if the macro used duplicates too much code. In any case, there is more flexibility to it yet. So far, all variables have been of the expr kind. We have used this by declaring $x:expr and $y:expr but, as you can imagine, there are other kinds of macro variables. The list follows: expr: Expressions that you can write after an = sign, such as 76+4 or if a==1 {“something”} else {“other thing”}. ident: An identifier or binding name, such as foo or bar. path: A qualified path. This will be a path that you could write in a use sentence, such as foo::bar::MyStruct or foo::bar::my_func. ty: A type, such as u64 or MyStruct. It can also be a path to the type. pat: A pattern that you can write at the left side of an = sign or in a match expression, such as Some(t) or (a, b, _). stmt: A full statement, such as a let binding like let a = 43;. block: A block element that can have multiple statements and a possible expression between braces, such as {vec.push(33); vec.len()}. item: What Rust calls items. For example, function or type declarations, complete modules, or trait definitions. meta: A meta element, which you can write inside of an attribute (#[]). For example, cfg(feature = “foo”). tt: Any token tree that will eventually get parsed by a macro pattern, which means almost anything. This is useful for creating recursive macros, for example. As you can imagine, some of these kinds of macro variables overlap and some of them are just more specific than the others. The use will be verified on the right-hand side of the macro, in the expansion, since you might try to use a statement where an expression must be used, even though you might use an identifier too, for example. There are some extra rules, too, as we can see in the Rust documentation (https://doc.rust-lang.org/book/first-edition/macros.html#syntactic-requirements). Statements and expressions can only be followed by =>, a comma, or a semicolon. Types and paths can only be followed by =>, the as or where keywords, or any commas, =, |, ;, :, >, [, or {. And finally, patterns can only be followed by =>, the if or in keywords, or any commas, =, or |. Let’s put this in practice by implementing a small Mul trait for a currency type we can create. This is an adapted example of some work we did when creating the Fractal Credits digital currency. In this case, we will look to the implementation of the Amount type (https://github.com/FractalGlobal/utils-rs/blob/49955ead9eef2d9373cc9386b90ac02b4d5745b4/src/amount.rs#L99-L102), which represents a currency amount. Let’s start with the basic type definition: #[derive(Copy, Clone, PartialEq, Eq, PartialOrd, Ord)]pub struct Amount { value: u64,} This amount will be divisible by up to three decimals, but it will always be an exact value. We should be able to add an Amount to the current Amount, or to subtract it. I will not explain these trivial implementations, but there is one implementation where macros can be of great help. We should be able to multiply the amount by any positive integer, so we should implement the Mul trait for u8, u16, u32, and u64 types. Not only that, we should be able to implement the Div and the Rem traits, but I will leave those out, since they are a little bit more complex. You can check them in the implementation linked earlier. The only thing the multiplication of an Amount with an integer should do is to multiply the value by the integer given. Let’s see a simple implementation for u8: use std::ops::Mul;impl Mul for Amount {type Output = Self;fn mul(self, rhs: u8) -> Self::Output {Self { value: self.value * rhs as u64 }}} impl Mul for u8 {type Output = Amount;fn mul(self, rhs: Amount) -> Self::Output {Self::Output { value: self as u64 * rhs.value }}} As you can see, I implemented it both ways so that you can put the Amount to the left and to the right of the multiplication. If we had to do this for all integers, it would be a big waste of time and code. And if we had to modify one of the implementations (especially for Rem functions), it would be troublesome to do it in multiple code points. Let’s use macros to help us. We can define a macro, impl_mul_int!{}, which will receive a list of integer types and then implement the Mul trait back and forward between all of them and the Amount type. Let’s see: macro_rules! impl_mul_int { ($($t:ty)*) => ($( impl Mul for Amount { type Output = Self; fn mul(self, rhs: $t) -> Self::Output {Self { value: self.value * rhs as u64 }}}impl Mul for $t {type Output = Amount; fn mul(self, rhs: Amount) -> Self::Output {Self::Output { value: self as u64 * rhs.value }}})*)}impl_mul_int! { u8 u16 u32 u64 usize } As you can see, we specifically ask for the given elements to be types and then we implement the trait for all of them. So, for any code that you want to implement for multiple types, you might as well try this approach, since it will save you from writing a lot of code and it will make it more maintainable. If you found this article useful and would like to learn more such tips, head on over to pick up the book, Rust High Performance, authored by Iban Eguia Moraza. Read Next: Perform Advanced Programming with Rust Rust 1.28 is here with global allocators, nonZero types and more Eclipse IDE’s Photon release will support Rustlast_img read more

first_imgYesterday, James Bennett, a software developer and an active contributor to the Django web framework issued the summary of a proposal on dissolving the Django Core team and revoking commit bits. Re-forming or reorganizing the Django core team has been a topic of discussion from the last couple of years, and this proposal aims to take this discussion to real action. What are the reasons behind the proposal of dissolving the Django Core team? Unable to bring in new contributors Django, the open source project has been facing some difficulty in recruiting and retaining contributors to keep the project alive. Typically, open source projects avoid this situation by having corporate sponsorship of contributions. Companies which rely on the software also have employees who are responsible to maintain it. This was true in the case of Django as well but it hasn’t really worked out as a long-term plan. As compared to the growth of this web framework, it has hardly been able to draw contributors from across its entire user base. The project has not been able to bring new committers at a sufficient rate to replace those who have become less active or even completely inactive. This essentially means that Django is dependent on the goodwill of the contributors who mostly don’t get paid to work on it and are very few in number. This poses a risk on the future of the Django web framework. Django Committer is seen as a high-prestige title Currently, the decisions are made by consensus, involving input from committers and non-committers on the django-developers list and the commits to the main Django repository are made by the Django Fellows. Even people who have commit bits of their own, and therefore have the right to just push their changes straight into Django, typically use pull requests and start a discussion. The actual governance rarely relies on the committers, but still, Django committer is seen as a high-prestige title, and committers are given a lot of respect by the wider community. This creates an impression among potential contributors that they’re not “good enough” to match up to those “awe-inspiring titanic beings”. What is this proposal about? Given the reasons above, this proposal is being made to dissolve the Django core team and also revoke the commit bits. Instead, this proposal will introduce two roles called Mergers and Releasers. Mergers would merge pull requests into Django and Releasers would package/publish releases. Rather than being all-powered decision-makers, these would be bureaucratic roles. The current set of Fellows will act as the initial set of Mergers, and something similar will happen for Releasers. As opposed to allowing the committers making decisions, governance would take place entirely in public, on the django-developers mailing list. But as a final tie-breaker, the technical board would be retained and would get some extra decision-making power. These powers will be mostly related to the selection of the Merger/Releaser roles and confirming that new versions of Django are ready for release. The technical board will be elected very less often than it currently is and the voting would also be open to public. The Django Software Foundation (DSF) will act as a neutral  administrator of the technical board elections. What are the goals this proposal aims to achieve? Mr. Bennett believes that eliminating the distinction between the committers and the “ordinary contributors” will open doors for more contributors: “Removing the distinction between godlike “committers” and plebeian ordinary contributors will, I hope, help to make the project feel more open to contributions from anyone, especially by making the act of committing code to Django into a bureaucratic task, and making all voices equal on the django-developers mailing list.” The technical board remains as a backstop for resolving dead-locked decisions. This proposal will provide additional authority to the board such as issuing the final go-ahead on releases. Retaining the technical board will ensure that Django is not going to descend into some sort of “chaotic mob rule”. Also, with this proposal the formal description of Django’s governance becomes much more in line with the reality of how the project actually works and has worked for the past several years. To know more in detail, read the post by James Bannett: Django Core no more. Read Next Django 2.1.2 fixes major security flaw that reveals password hash to “view only” admin users Django 2.1 released with new model view permission and more Getting started with Django and Django REST frameworks to build a RESTful applast_img read more

first_imgLow-cost South African pay TV service TopTV will change its name to StarSat, possibly in November, and will rebrand its channels, according to local reports.The change reflects the involvement of China-based StarTimes as a major shareholder in TopTV, which has struggled to gain traction in the South African market, dominated by MultiChoice.According to reports, StarSat will carry a new line-up of about 90 channels and an updated StarSat bouquet. The service will also include an adult package.The change in the company’s shareholding structure is subject to approval by South Africa’s regulatory authorities.last_img read more

first_imgThe occupational health expert chosen by the government to review its much-criticised “fitness for work” test appears to have suggested that the assessment should be scrapped and replaced with a radically different process.Dr Paul Litchfield, who led the fourth and fifth reviews of the work capability assessment (WCA), said the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) had been “forced into rushing the design of the WCA”, before it was introduced by the New Labour government in 2008.Litchfield, BT’s chief medical officer, was giving evidence to the Commons work and pensions committee for its inquiry into the assessment processes for personal independence payment and employment and support allowance (ESA).He was speaking just days after new figures, published by Disability News Service, showed that the proportion of people claiming out-of-work disability benefits who had attempted suicide at some point in their lives doubled between 2007 – the year before the WCA was introduced – and 2014.Litchfield (pictured, giving evidence), who was not asked about the figures by the committee, said there had been attempts to improve the WCA, but he warned: “There have been efforts to adjust it and improve it over time, but when it starts from a position which is designed as imperfect, you’re lucky if it gets more perfect, it is just as likely to get more imperfect as you adapt it.”Litchfield told the committee: “The philosophical basis of what we do as a society does need to be revisited.”He claimed that “the thinking that went into creating the current assessment” dated back at least to the early 1980s in the United States, and the WCA was simply an “evolution” of the previous assessment, the personal capability assessment.He said the WCA was designed “very quickly to meet the legislative timescales… so it wasn’t a radical redesign of a system, it was an adaptation of what was there already”.Litchfield said that the nature of work had “changed dramatically over that period” and it was now necessary to “think about as a society… how we want to distribute benefits to those who can’t work for whatever reason, and whether we want something which is specifically based on their health condition and their disability.“If we do want that we need to think about how we would design that in the context of the modern workplace and the shifting demographics and the shifting disease profile that we are seeing in the population, so I think there does need to be that fundamental thinking that goes on but that inevitably is a 10, 15-year process and you can’t rush it.”Despite those comments, disabled campaigners who have been calling for years for the WCA to be scrapped and replaced – because of its links to relapses, anxiety and distress among those with long-term health conditions, and the loss of many lives – are likely to be bemused by other remarks made by Litchfield to the committee.He suggested that much of the reason for the failure of the WCA was that it was based on a “medical model” understanding of disability, which he said was now “largely discredited”.He said that many experts were now more in favour of a “biopsychosocial model” approach.But campaigners and researchers have previously pointed out that the biopsychosocial (BPS) model crucially underpins ESA and the WCA and also played a significant role in the tightening of eligibility criteria for ESA and other disability benefits by the coalition and Tory governments.Research published last year by Professor Tom Shakespeare and Professor Nicholas Watson, and fellow academic Ola Abu Alghaib, argued that the BPS model was riddled with inconsistencies, misleading statements and “unevidenced” claims.The BPS model was developed by Dr Gordon Waddell, an orthopaedic surgeon, and Professor Sir Mansel Aylward, who was DWP’s chief medical officer from 1995 to 2005.Key to the BPS model, the three authors said last year, is the idea that “it is the negative attitudes of many ESA recipients that prevent them from working, rather than their impairment or health condition”, essentially branding many benefit claimants “scroungers”.This allows supporters of BPS – including a string of New Labour and Tory government ministers – to draw a distinction “between ‘real’ incapacity benefit claimants, with long-term and incurable health conditions, and ‘fake’ benefit claimants, with short-term illness”, with the model responsible for a “barely concealed” element of “victim-blaming”, they said.last_img read more