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July 22, 2019
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First Edition April 3 2013

first_imgToday’s headlines include reports about how the latest round of payment rates for private Medicare plans led to stock market gains for insurers. Kaiser Health News: Death Rates Rise At Geographically Isolated Hospitals, Study FindsKaiser Health News staff writer Jordan Rau reports: “For 15 years, Congress has bestowed special privileges to some small remote hospitals, usually in rural areas, to help them stay afloat. Medicare pays them more than it pays most hospitals and exempts them from financial pressure to operate efficiently and requirements to reveal how their patients fare. Nearly one in four hospitals qualifies for the program. Despite these benefits, there’s new evidence that the quality of many of these hospitals may be deteriorating. A study published Tuesday found that during the past decade the death rates of patients at these critical access hospitals were growing while mortality rates at other hospitals were dropping” (Rau, 4/2). Read the story.Kaiser Health News: In South Jersey, New Options For Primary Care Are Slow To Take HoldWHYY’s Taunya English, working in partnership with Kaiser Health News and NPR, reports: “Camden, N.J., has serious health problems, with too many people going to local emergency rooms unnecessarily. But progress is being made, albeit slowly” (English, 4/3). Read the story.Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Why You May Want To Reconsider That Plan With A Health Savings AccountNow on Kaiser Health News’ blog, consumer columnist Michelle Andrews writes about health savings accounts: “Since high-deductible plans often mean you pay more out of pocket for medical care, it might seem like a no-brainer to sign up for a plan that links to a health savings account so you can sock away money tax free to cover your medical expenses. But there are good reasons to think twice before making that choice” (Andrews, 4/2). Check out what else is on the blog.Politico: CMS Reverses Course On CutsThe insurance industry chalked up one of its greatest political victories in recent memory on Monday as the Obama administration reversed course on a proposal to cut Medicare Advantage rates. After intense lobbying, the agency said Monday that it would change the proposed 2.3 percent cut to those plans to a 3.3 percent boost. That’s a significant swing worth billions of dollars to the industry next year alone (Norman and Haberkorn, 4/3).The Wall Street Journal: Health Insurers Prevail In Medicare Fight With WashingtonWashington wants to get tough on spending—but in the latest round of payment rates for private Medicare plans, insurers emerged victorious. Shares of health insurance companies soared Tuesday after federal officials scrapped proposed payment cuts to carriers that run Medicare plans amid pressure from senior citizens and lawmakers (Kamp, 4/2).The Associated Press/Los Angeles Times: Health Insurers Lead Stocks Higher On Wall StreetU.S. stocks closed at a record highs Tuesday after reports on auto sales and factory orders provided the latest evidence that the U.S. economy is strengthening. Traders plowed money back into European stocks as the financial situation in Cyprus appeared to stabilize. Health insurers powered the gains a day after the government released revised reimbursement rates for Medicare Advantage plans. The new numbers suggest that funding cuts will be less severe than analysts and companies had feared (4/2).Reuters/The New York Times: Rate Increase for Private Medicare Buoys an Uncertain MarketStocks rose on Tuesday, led by the health care sector after the government said it would alter payment rates for private Medicare insurers, and helped by data on factory orders that indicated the economy was steadily improving (4/2).USA Today: Stock Indexes Close At New Highs On Medicare NewsThe Dow Jones industrial average and the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed at new highs Tuesday following strong reports on auto sales and factory orders, evidence that the U.S. economy is strengthening. The Dow closed up 89.16 points to 14,662.01 and the S&P 500 finished up 8.08 points to 1,570.25. The Nasdaq composite rose 15.69 points to 3,254.86 (Huggins, 4/3).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Departing WellPoint CEO’s Compensation Ballooned To $20.6M Last Year, As Insurer’s Shares FellThe compensation paid to outgoing Wellpoint Inc. CEO Angela Braly last year rose 56 percent, even as the company’s shares slid on lower enrollment in its Blue Cross Blue Shield health plans. Braly, who resigned in August, received 2012 compensation valued at $20.6 million, according to an Associated Press analysis of the company’s annual proxy statement. Most of the increase came from stock options (4/2).USA Today: Feds Delay Small-Business Health Care ProgramSmall businesses may not have an insurance market set up specifically for them when the state and federal health exchanges begin in January, government officials said Monday (Kennedy, 4/2).Los Angeles Times: State Hires Consumer Group To Health It Review Healthcare RatesCalifornia Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones lashed out Tuesday at another double-digit rate hike for thousands of small businesses getting their health insurance from industry giant Anthem Blue Cross (Terhune, 4/3).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Medicaid Contractor Objects To Cancellation, Says Nothing Improper Done to Get La. ContractThe company whose nearly $200 million Medicaid contract with the state has been cancelled says it didn’t do anything improper to get the work, despite an ongoing federal investigation into the contract award (4/2).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Fight Brewing Over McDonnell Amendment Banning Abortion Coverage Through Va Insurance ExchangeA Senate fight is brewing over Gov. Bob McDonnell’s amendment to ban abortion coverage from being sold through a new federally run health insurance exchange. The bill faces an uncertain outcome in the Senate, where Democrats and Republicans hold 20 seats apiece. It’s likely the most fiercely debated bill in Wednesday’s single-day reconvened legislative session to consider McDonnell’s amendments to 80 bills and vetoes to six (4/3).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Alabama Legislature Passes Bill Setting Stricter Standards For Abortion ClinicsAlabama lawmakers late Tuesday gave final passage to a measure placing stricter regulations on clinics that provide abortions. The state House voted 68-21 to give final passage to the Women’s Health and Safety Act. The vote came hours after the state Senate voted 20-10 to approve the bill after amending the measure to require clinics to tell patients what medications they had received (4/3).NPR: Obama’s Plan To Explore The Brain A ‘Most Audacious Project’President Obama has announced an ambitious plan to explore the mysteries of the human brain. In a speech Tuesday, Obama said he will ask Congress for $100 million in 2014 to “better understand how we think and how we learn and how we remember.” Other goals include finding new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy and traumatic brain injury (Hamilton, 3/2). Check out all of Kaiser Health News’ e-mail options including First Edition and Breaking News alerts on our Subscriptions page. First Edition: April 3, 2013 This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

July 22, 2019
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FDA Advisory Panel Backs First Potential Copycat Drug

first_imgFDA Advisory Panel Backs First Potential ‘Copycat’ Drug If the government accepts the recommendation, it could mean millions of dollars in savings for consumers who need expensive drugs. CQ Healthbeat: FDA Advisers Back First Potential Copycat Biotech Drug In U.S. The Wall Street Journal: FDA Panel Backs First ‘Biosimilar’ Drug Meanwhile, other media look at how drug companies market to doctors and hold onto patents – A U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Wednesday unanimously recommended the agency approve the first “biosimilar” drug in the U.S., a version of the anti-infective cancer drug Neupogen. The FDA panel concluded by a vote of 14-0 that a drug called EP2006, which Novartis AG ’s Sandoz unit plans to market in the U.S. under the name Zarxio, is highly similar to Amgen Inc. ’s Neupogen. Neupogen is designed to increase white blood-cell counts, and lower infection rates, mostly in patients getting chemotherapy and other treatments. (Burton, 1/7) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Wednesday voted to recommend that the agency approve a generic version of a biotech drug, a move that could lead to the first U.S.-approved “biosimilar” in a potentially booming market. The panel voted 14 to 0 to recommend approval of a generic version of Neupogen, a $1.4 billion drug produced by Amgen Inc. used to boost white blood cells in cancer patients. Novartis AG’s Sandoz unit submitted its application earlier this year. (Gustin and Young, 1/7) Reuters: U.S. Hedge Fund Plans To Take On Big Pharma Over Patents For more than five decades, the blood thinner Coumadin was the only option for millions of patients at risk for life-threatening blood clots. But now, a furious battle is underway among the makers of three newer competitors for the prescription pads of doctors across the country. The manufacturers of these drugs — Pradaxa, Xarelto and Eliquis — have been wooing physicians in part by paying for meals, promotional speeches, consulting gigs and educational gifts. In the last five months of 2013, the companies spent nearly $19.4 million on doctors and teaching hospitals, according to ProPublica’s analysis of federal data released last fall. The information, from a database known as Open Payments, gives the first comprehensive look at how much money drug and device companies have spent working with doctors. What it shows is that the drugs most aggressively promoted to doctors typically aren’t cures or even big medical breakthroughs. Some are top sellers, but most are not. (Ornstein and Jones, 1/7) ProPublica: Vying For Market Share, Companies Heavily Promote ‘Me Too’ Drugs The Washington Post: A Class Of Expensive Drugs Is Getting Cheaper Competition For The First Time U.S. hedge fund manager Kyle Bass, who won fame for predicting the subprime mortgage crisis in 2008, plans to take on some of the world’s biggest drug producers by challenging the patents of their top brands, he said on Wednesday. Bass, the founder of Dallas-based Hayman Capital Management, L.P., said some drug firms were hanging onto patents in questionable ways and he planned to take around 15 firms into a so called Inter Partes Review (IPR) process created by the America Invents Act in 2012. (1/7) A government panel Wednesday took a major step toward approving a copycat version of a blockbuster cancer drug, paving the way for a new class of cheaper medicines that could save consumers billions of dollars. An expert Food and Drug Administration panel unanimously recommended that the government approve the drug known as EP2006, a lower-cost imitator of a popular medicine called Neupogen, used to help cancer patients fight off infection while undergoing chemotherapy. The FDA usually accepts recommendations from advisory panels but is not required to. (Millman, 1/7) last_img read more

July 21, 2019
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BoC upbeat about outlook as it leaves rates unchanged but will proceed

first_img Sponsored By: BoC upbeat about outlook as it leaves rates unchanged, but will proceed with caution Kevin Carmichael: Potential backlash from U.S.-China trade war mutes Poloz’s spring exuberance Stephen Poloz’s statement on the rate hold: “The degree of accommodation being provided by the current policy rate remains appropriate.”Sean Kilpatrick / Canadian Press May 29, 20196:21 PM EDT Filed under News Economy 0 Comments What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Recommended For YouAll 23 crew of seized British-operated tanker are safe -Iranian TVOptiv Security Brings Cybersecurity Innovation to Dallas-Fort WorthThe storm is coming and investors need a financial ark to see them throughTrans Mountain construction work can go ahead as National Energy Board re-validates permitsDavid Rosenberg: Deflation is still the No. 1 threat to global economic stability — and central banks know it Join the conversation → Email The Bank of Canada is feeling pretty good about the economic outlook, all things considered.Policymakers left the benchmark interest rate unchanged at 1.75 per cent on May 29, noting that the escalation of Donald Trump’s trade war with China “is heightening uncertainty about economic prospects.”That was expected, as economic growth essentially stalled at the end of 2018 and was struggling to rebound early in the new year. An expression of worry about a new round of tit-for-tat tariffs between the world’s largest economies also was expected.Canada’s non-energy exports already were weak. Anything that hurts global demand, or makes it more difficult for Canada’s relatively uncompetitive exporters to find new markets, would deny the economy a lift from international sales. The International Monetary Fund estimates the row between the U.S and China will erase 0.3 per cent from global gross domestic product in the short term. Markets are more gloomy about our economy than the Bank of Canada — who’s right? Trudeau government gives formal notice it intends to ratify new NAFTA China’s trade war threat to withhold rare earths from U.S. would inflict ‘devastating’ blow “The degree of accommodation being provided by the current policy rate remains appropriate,” the Bank of Canada said in a statement.Related Stories:Bank of Canada puts rate firmly on hold as global trade war damage risesCanadian inflation dips to 2.0% in June, hitting central bank targetBank of Canada content to leave rates unchanged, frets about trade war damageAside from trade, policymakers say the world was unfolding much as they expected last month, when they slashed their forecast for economic growth in the first quarter to an annual rate of 0.3 per cent, while predicting a rebound to a rate of 1.3 per cent in the current quarter. The central bank said there is “accumulating evidence” that the slump was temporary, just as it thought.That note of assurance restores a bit of the swagger the Bank of Canada lost when it failed to anticipate the severity of last year’s slowdown.Stephen Poloz and his deputies on the Governing Council were gradually taking interest rates higher last year, when the economy hit a wall. Oil and real estate prices plunged in fourth quarter and household spending sputtered. Policymakers retreated to the sidelines, unsure if the economy was ready for higher interest rates.They remain unsure, as there is no indication in the new statement that policymakers are ready to resume their path back to a more normal interest-rate setting.At the same time, there is nothing to indicate that an interest-rate cut was on the table over the past couple of weeks as the Governing Council assessed the outlook. That could surprise some people. Prices of assets geared to short-term interest rates suggest that some investors are betting economic conditions will force interest rates lower this year. The central bank doesn’t appear to see things going that way.“The bank isn’t moving,” Darcy Briggs, a portfolio manager at Franklin Templeton Investments, said in a telephone interview from Calgary. “The Canadian outlook is mediocre at best.”Poloz said in April that the unusually severe winter appeared to have disrupted commerce, but that he couldn’t be sure until he saw more data. The information since then has been mostly positive. Factory sales jumped 2.1 per cent in March from February after stalling the previous month, while new orders increased by 1.5 per cent, Statistics Canada reported on May 16. Retail sales also recovered in March, climbing 1.1 per cent, the second-consecutive monthly increase.Continued strong job growth suggests that businesses see the weakness in the past two quarters as temporaryBank of Canada statement Share this storyBoC upbeat about outlook as it leaves rates unchanged, but will proceed with caution Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn advertisement The Bank of Canada said the oil sector is “beginning” to recover and that weakness in the housing market appears to be isolated to a few regions. Evidence indicates that consumer spending and exports have picked up, and “overall business investment has firmed,” the statement said.And then there are those impressive hiring numbers. Employers created more than 100,000 new positions in April, the most on record. The data are volatile, but the central bank has concluded that companies wouldn’t be taking on new workers at this rate if the economy was going off the rails.“Continued strong job growth suggests that businesses see the weakness in the past two quarters as temporary,” the statement said.The U.S.-China trade war makes forecasting with confidence impossible because the rules on which standard economic models and theories are built don’t apply to Trump and China’s form of state-directed capitalism.So orders will be determined by geopolitical considerations rather than factors such as quality and price, according to Angelo Katsoras, geopolitical analyst at National Bank. International companies may need multiple supply chains to avoid the web of tariffs and sanctions that the U.S. and China have deployed. And a settlement wouldn’t be an automatic gain for a country such as Canada, which has benefited to some degree from China’s tariffs on American farm goods. Any agreement likely would involve U.S. agriculture exports, which could hurt Canadian farmers.The Bank of Canada reiterated that interest rates will be guided by data, especially indicators that shed light on what’s going on with household spending, oil prices and trade policy.Poloz and his deputies have seen enough to assure themselves that they aren’t fighting a recession. But they will proceed extremely cautiously because Trump and China still could trigger one.• Email: kcarmichael@postmedia.com | Twitter: CarmichaelKevin More Kevin Carmichael Featured Stories Reddit Twitter Comment Facebook ← Previous Next →last_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Forget about getting fresh trade data — the US shutdown is now

first_img January 17, 201910:53 AM EST Filed under News Economy advertisement Bloomberg News Share this storyForget about getting fresh trade data — the U.S. shutdown is now hitting Canada Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Recommended For YouDollar under pressure after Fed fuels bets on large rate cutAsia stocks gain, dollar sags as Fed reinforces rate cut expectationsS.Korea urges Japan to accept request for talks over export controlsApple Inc. plans to open office in Westbank’s glitzy West Georgia towerJapan to summon S.Korea envoy over World War Two laborer row Email Reddit Comment Featured Stories 3 Comments Canada’s statistics agency will stop releasing monthly merchandise trade data indefinitely because of the U.S. government shutdown.Statistics Canada said Thursday the next trade report, due Feb. 5, won’t be published as scheduled. The delay will likely last until after the U.S. Census Bureau resumes normal operations. Since 1990, the Canadian agency has been using U.S. figures to calculate the nation’s exports to its biggest trading partner.“Trade statistics without Canada’s exports to the U.S. have limited use as a current economic indicator, as these exports represent approximately 75 per cent of Canada’s total exports,” the Ottawa-based agency said on its website.The lack of merchandise trade data casts a fog over the state of the nation’s economy, and raises the prospect of a prolonged delay handcuffing the Bank of Canada’s ability to properly assess the economic outlook as it considers additional interest rate increases.“With more U.S. indicators being delayed — especially at the start of the year — it will become more difficult for the Bank of Canada to forecast where the economy and exports are headed in 2019,” Dominique Lapointe, an economist with Laurentian Bank Securities Inc., said from Montreal.Policy makers, however, had been widely expected to remain on hold for at least the next few months. That means the data gap caused by the shutdown isn’t likely to have an immediate impact on Bank of Canada rate expectations, according to Bipan Rai, head of North American foreign-exchange strategy at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in Toronto.“The bank seems to be have gotten its message across” on a pause, Rai said by phone.”We don’t expect them to deviate too much from that message, at least in the coming months.”The shutdown in Washington isn’t just impacting the trade report. Export numbers are also used as inputs for quarterly gross domestic estimates, but Canada’s statistics agency said it will still be able to publish GDP numbers for the fourth quarter as scheduled because it has enough data from October and November to make calculations.The agency said other options for the trade data may be considered if the U.S. shutdown drags on.With assistance from Erik Hertzberg.Bloomberg.com More Facebook What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Join the conversation → Statistics Canada said Thursday trade data likely won’t be published until after the U.S. Census Bureau resumes normal operations.Postmedia Twitter Greg Quinn Sponsored By: Forget about getting fresh trade data — the U.S. shutdown is now hitting Canada Canada’s statistics agency will stop releasing monthly merchandise trade data indefinitely because of the U.S. government shutdown ← Previous Next →last_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Road Test 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan 20T SEL Premium 4Motion

first_imgSource: Electric, Hybrid, Clean Diesel & High-MPG Vehicles Volkswagen’s Not-So-Small Compact CrossoverThe compact crossover has taken the automotive market by storm. Manufacturers have realized if they don’t have one in their line-up, they will be left behind. They also know that offering a compact crossover that stands out from the crowd is vital. So what Volkswagen has done with the 2018 Tiguan is to make it bigger than the other compact crossovers, so it almost slots in as a small midsize SUV.Confusing? It can be, but certainly its size is only one of the reasons to consider buying a Tiguan. Clean Fleet Report drove the 2018 Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion and came away appreciating what Volkswagen has done that should impress consumers.Turbo Power + AWDTiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion is powered by a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to the 4Motion permanent all-wheel-drive system. The 4Motion system is engineered to eliminate wheel spin under almost all conditions and to automatically decouple the rear wheels when the driving load and conditions don’t require the additional traction, thusly saving fuel. But when necessary, in fractions of seconds, the 4Motion system engages the rear wheels for seamless and instant needed traction. More on this later.The Tiguan’s grown a bitEPA fuel economy is 21 city/27 highway/23 combined, numbers we feel are a bit low since Volkswagen can squeeze upper-30 miles per gallon from its four-cylinder engines. In real world use, in 288 miles of driving SoCal freeways, we averaged 28.1 mpg. However, over a 200-mile all-freeway run with the adaptive cruise control set at 65 mpg, we averaged a much more satisfying 31.1 mpg.It is important to note that the fuel economy numbers reported by Clean Fleet Report are non-scientific. They represent the reviewer’s driving experience, but should be similar to most drivers living in our reviewer’s cities. If you live in cold weather, high in the mountains, spend time in the city or stuck in rush hour traffic, then your numbers may differ.Driving Experience: On the RoadThe 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion handled with a responsiveness that requires little driver exertion. As a matter of fact, it was easy to drive with the 235/50 all-season tires on 19-inch alloy wheels. Located next to the shift lever, the driver-selectable four drive modes offered options for the sure-footed 4Motion system, improving the handling even in normal and dry conditions. The crossover’s balance eliminated body roll or pitching from side-to-side during aggressive turns. When powering through hard corners, the four-wheel independent suspension of the Tiguan pulled tighter the sharper you turn the wheel. The power-assisted front vented and rear solid discs, with anti-lock brakes, stopped the car straight without brake fade. Electronic stability control is standard.4Motion can take you there–in four waysThe front suspension is strut-type with coil springs, with multi-link and coil springs in the rear and anti-roll bars all-around. The rack-and-pinion electric power steering has been programmed to provide excellent road feel. Highway 70+ mph cruising was solid and confident.Driving Experience: ExteriorThe redesigned 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan has contemporary styling and is nearly devoid of chrome. This refreshing, clean and simple design, with a slim front grille and LED headlights, has a respectable 0.35 drag coefficient.The strong but subtle body line—the line that runs along the side of the car from front to back, leads to the horizontal, notched tail lamps. The roof, with a power tilting and sliding panoramic sunroof, has rails, the smallest-of-smallest antennas and an integrated spoiler over the power lift gate. Badging is at a minimum to not distract from the overall design.Driving Experience: InteriorRubber mats are a welcome interior additionThe Tiguan’s neat and tidy interior was also redesigned for 2018. Its clean fit and finish is nothing fancy, trendy or quirky but retains its German simplicity. The mix of soft and hard plastics were uncomplicated by fake woods or other design gimmicks. The white backlighting for the dash gauges added a premium element, which went along with the overall premium materials used throughout the interior. It was very thoughtful for Volkswagen to anticipate the Tiguan being used in ways that could get messy. The rubber Weathertech MuddyBuddy floor mats were great at keeping all the dirt and muck off the carpeted floors. They were very easy to remove, sweep and hose off. We always wonder why these mats are not in more cars we see here at Clean Fleet Report.Four different configurations available hereThe Digital Cockpit information screen can be configured for up-to four different drivers, while the centerpiece of the infotainment system (information and entertainment) is the 8.0-inch color touchscreen. The nine-speaker Fender Premium audio system delivered deep, full crisp tones for the AM/FM/HD radio and CD player with MP3 playback. The SiriusXM, with a 90-day trial subscription, is part of VW’s Media Device Interface (MDI) with Bluetooth for telephone and streaming music, a SD card and two USB ports. Volkswagen’s VW CarNet connected car technology provides a seamless link for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Clean Fleet Report is a big fan of knobs and switches for the radio and climate controls. VW does a nice job of making it easy to operate the radio and the dual zone climate control system with the turn of a few knobs.Our 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4Motion had first and second row leather-trimmed seats. The front seats are heated with the driver getting power adjustments and memory. The seats had good thigh bolstering with lumbar adjustable for the driver that, when combined with the height adjustable and telescoping steering column, made finding a comfortable driving position easy. Separating the front seats is a center console with cup holders and an ample storage area. The leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel and gear shift lever are nice upgrades.Three rows now, no waitingThe third row seat is covered in Leatherette, a fabric technology that is comfortable to the touch, provides good air circulation and is durable. Access to the third row is a little tight, but not bad. The head, leg, elbow and shoulder room can accommodate two adult passengers for shorter trips, but when this seat is in the upright position storage space is limited. The third row will be used occasionally, if at all.The second row has excellent space for two adults, three in a pinch. The ability for the second row seat to slide offers great flexibility to increase leg room. HVAC vents, cupholders and reading lights make the rear seat an overall welcoming place to hang out. When the second row 40/20/40 split seat back is lowered, storage capacity increases to 73.5 cu. ft. And this storage space is very usable, as the roof is nearly flat and the lift gate is not raked at a severe angle. For even more storage, the Tiguan comes with roof rack rails.Interior conveniences, standard or optional, include power windows, remote engine start with keyless access, heated multi-function steering wheel with audio and telephone controls, cruise control, power adjustable and manual folding heated exterior mirrors with puddle lamps, multiple power ports and front and rear reading lights.Safety and ConvenienceThe taillight is another detail in this class actClean Fleet Report’s 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan came with eight airbags, a tire pressure monitoring system and an Intelligent Crash Response System. Standard or available safety features include a rear view camera, a blind spot monitor, lane departure warning, rear traffic alert, and forward collision warning and autonomous emergency braking. If you have never driven a car with these last two safety features, have your Volkswagen sales representative demonstrate them to you on the highway. Once you have used them, you will feel naked when driving a car that is not similarly equipped.Pricing and WarrantiesClean Fleet Report’s 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion had a MSRP of $37,550. Add $900 for the destination charge.The 2018 Tiguan comes with these warranties:New Vehicle                                 Six years/72,000 milesPowertrain                                    Six years/72,000 milesCorrosion Perforation                Seven years/100,000 miles24 Hour Roadside Assistance  Three years/36,000 miles         Observations: 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4MotionYou won’t be disappointed owning the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan if you are looking for a compact crossover that is roomy, has a quiet ride and is fully-equipped with a nicely appointed interior. Add-in the inviting entry price of $24,595 (S model with front-wheel drive) and what is the most flexible and one of the longest warranties in its class.The Tiguan has a lot to offerClean Fleet Report did not have the opportunity to take the Tiguan off-road to test the 4Motion all-when drive system. We have though done this on other Volkswagen models and can report that it offers exceptional grip. But you don’t need to go off roading to get the advantage of the sure-footed handling of the Tiguan. The confidence is high when entering high-speed corners or being passed by an 18-wheeler at freeway speeds.Go to your local Volkswagen dealer and take an extra-long test drive. You may feel the 2018 Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion suits your commuting and around-town family needs, along with your adventurous side trekking through the back country.Whatever you end up buying, Happy Driving! [See image gallery at www.cleanfleetreport.com] Related Stories You Might Enjoy—Compact Crossover CompetitionRoad Test: 2016 Nissan RogueRoad Test: 2017 Nissan Rogue HybridRoad Test: 2018 Toyota RAV4Road Test: 2018 Toyota RAV4 HybridRoad Test: 2017 Ford EscapeRoad Test: 2018 Chevrolet Equinox DieselRoad Test: 2018 Chevrolet Equinox GasRoad Test: 2018 Honda CR-VFirst Drive: 2017 Mazda CX-5Road Test: 2017 Kia SportageRoad Test: 2014 Subaru ForesterRoad Test: 2017 Hyundai Tucson FCEVFlash Drive: 2018 GMC TerrainFlash Drive: 2019 Jeep CherokeeRoad Test: 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEVRoad Test: 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse CrossDisclosure:Clean Fleet Report is loaned free test vehicles from automakers to evaluate, typically for a week at a time. Our road tests are based on this one-week drive of a new vehicle. Because of this we don’t address issues such as long-term reliability or total cost of ownership. In addition, we are often invited to manufacturer events highlighting new vehicles or technology. As part of these events we may be offered free transportation, lodging or meals. We do our best to present our unvarnished evaluations of vehicles and news irrespective of these inducements.Our focus is on vehicles that offer the best fuel economy in their class, which leads us to emphasize electric cars, plug-in hybrids, hybrids and diesels. We also feature those efficient gas-powered vehicles that are among the top mpg vehicles in their class. In addition, we aim to offer reviews and news on advanced technology and the alternative fuel vehicle market. We welcome any feedback from vehicle owners and are dedicated to providing a forum for alternative viewpoints. Please let us know your views at publisher@cleanfleetreport.com.The post Road Test: 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0T SEL Premium 4Motion appeared first on Clean Fleet Report.last_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Watch Lamborghini Huracan Race Tesla Model X

first_imgFor SUVs, racing against the Huracan in itself is a victoryThe Lamborghini Huracan is one of the quickest cars on the road and we already saw several duals against the Tesla Model S.Here is the new clash, but with the Tesla Model X P100D.As one would expect, the Model X takes the lead in the first meters…Lamborghini Huracan vs Teslas … then the Huracan finds some speed and gains momentum.According to Carnovo,the results for the 1/4 mile are:Lamborghini Huracan – 10.69 secondsTesla Model X P100D – 12.03 seconds Tesla Model S P100DL VS Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4 (video) Tesla Model S P100D Ludicrous vs Lamborghini Huracan 1/4 Mile Drag Race Source: Electric Vehicle News Tesla Model S P85D Ludicrous vs Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4 – DragTimes Race Video Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 1, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Dear President Trump you have some questions about electric cars here are

first_imgSource: Charge Forward During a rally in Michigan, President Trump mocked electric cars, but it sounded like he had a few questions about the technology. Here, we try to answer them. more…The post Dear President Trump, you have some questions about electric cars: here are the answers appeared first on Electrek.last_img

July 21, 2019
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US Candidates Biden and Warren announce multitrillion dollar climate plans how do

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Two of the leading Democratic presidential candidates, Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, both unveiled new plans today that aim to address the climate crisis through major investments in clean energy. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post US Candidates Biden and Warren announce multi-trillion dollar climate plans, how do they compare? appeared first on Electrek.last_img

July 21, 2019
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NEVSEvergrande acquires motor maker Protean Electric

first_imgSource: Electric Vehicles Magazine Evergrande Health subsidiary National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) has acquired in-wheel motor technology company Protean Electric. Founded in 2008, Protean Electric prioritized the development of its ProteanDrive in-wheel motor technology, which combines power electronics and a direct-drive electric motor. The company holds over 160 patents on electric motors and power electronics design, control and production. Protean Electric will operate independently under the Evergrande umbrella.Protean CEO Ky Chan says, “This agreement will enable Protean Electric to fulfill its global potential and do so more rapidly. This acquisition will aid Protean Electric in establishing a strategic advantage in the new energy and mobility markets and bring in new expertise. Evergrande is a well-established and ambitious business, determined to make a mark in the clean mobility arena across the world.”Source: Protean Electriclast_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Tesla loses three vice presidents in a week

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Another Tesla vice president left the company this week, making it the third VP-level departure from Tesla in about a week. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post Tesla loses three vice presidents in a week appeared first on Electrek.last_img

July 21, 2019
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Dismantling of García by Kim the magnificent puts States on track

first_img | Pick 0 1 Facebook | Pick Facebook Sun 21 Sep 2008 19.06 EDT Share on Facebook Share on Facebook Ryder Cup 2008 Twitter | Pick Share on Facebook Share FarawayfanFaldo couldn’t chose who would play against whom. He probably expected Michelson to top the American list so Garcia would be playing him. Who could have imagined Kim going off first?Personally, I think Europe lost for three reasons – none of them to do with Faldo.First, Garcia was clearly not very well (what was he taking anti-biotics for?) and poor old Harrington simple could not get it going (everyone has days like that, pro or not pro.)Second, Woods wasn’t playing. I strongly suspect he intimidates his whole team whereas he only intimidates a couple of the enemy on the golf course.Third, the Americans wanted it just that little bit more.And they played just great. Twitter Twitter Share on Twitter Read more Share on Twitter Share Topics Facebook Facebook Reply Reply Twitter Twitter Facebook When your three best experienced players, Garcia, Westwood and Harrington don’t score any points you can’t put all the blame on Faldo even if his strategy was all wrong. Poulter or Karlson should have been the one to face Kim as they were the only two Euro players who could putt. The rest were inconsistent at best when putting. If Garcia could putt he would be in position to win the $10 M which V.J.Singh will pick up next week. The U.S.A.Team played over their heads and good luck to them, their putting was incredible and they deserved to win. The Yankee BS was as usual sickening. The ironic thing is that Faldo took the most stick for his lineup in Saturday’s morning foursomes — no Garcia, no Westwood. And yet, that was the only of the 5 sessions in which Europe won more than they lost. As for the singles order, I think the blame to Faldo is almost entirely baseless. 22 Sep 2008 16:44 Share Loading comments… Trouble loading? Reuse this content,View all comments > Reason (optional) PaulieC23…I’m Irish but I’m with you all the way. This “Ole Ole” nonsense make me puke. They guys are all soccer fans who on another day would be grunting “Keano Keano” at a TV screen in some Dublin pub dressed in Man Utd shirts.As for the golf the USA played better golf and therefore deserved to win. I don’t think Faldo was to blame, Karlsson and Rose got points on the board early on and Casey should have beaten Mahan. The only thing I would have done differently was to put Poulter or McDowell further up the order as Garcia was always going to lose with his putting. Harrington deserves a good slapping!! The Brit press is getting Faldo back for his disdain for them over the las t 20 years. 2 22 Sep 2008 15:27 Report 0 1 Share Reply … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. 0 1 Report Reply Firstly, congratulations to the US team for a well-deserved victory. It was interesting to note unheralded players like Holmes, Weekley and Campbell contributing massively to the win.On Faldo, dcnole made the point I was going to make; namely the only session that Europe won was the one Faldo received most stick for. Plus, of course, his controversial choice of Poulter was justified. It’s interesting to note that in Denmark there has been only limited criticism of Faldo, which suggests that the criticism from the British journalists is as much to do with the historically frosty relationship that Faldo has with the British media as any captaincy matters.As for why Europe lost, Garcia, Harrington and Westwood were the ones expected to lead the team with their Ryder Cup experience/records and/or Major records. The three of them hardly won a point amongst them, which is hardly something that you can blame Faldo for. Share on Twitter collapsed Report The Recap: sign up for the best of the Guardian’s sport coverage Twitter 1 chuckwalrus 0 1 The writing has been on the wall for Sergio for a long time since his putting stroke has deserted him completely. I cannot say how much I admired Poulter’s effort despite his controversial selection, the contribution from the Scandinavians was really something too. Living in Canada I had to put up with the N.B.C. commentary, it was truly sickening. Am I the only one to note the European Team looked like something out of Peacocks Discount Store.Those tops !fairestplayWho are you then mate. Bit chopsy ?JVIP Shares00 22 Sep 2008 8:49 | Pick Share | Pick Since you’re here… Report Twitter Share on Facebook Reply Deeks Order by oldest 22 Sep 2008 17:44 Share on Facebook Reply Share on Twitter | Pick Share on Facebook Report Report Reply Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Reply Twitter Report Twitter Reply Share on Twitter Close report comment form Reply 22 Sep 2008 11:20 Facebook Report 22 Sep 2008 15:30 Share on Twitter fairestplay Share Twitter Facebook | Pick Share Twitter Share on Twitter oh, one more thing, Boo aside lets not forget that there were some sporting moments in this years Ryder Cup that ought to be remembered. I particularly liked when Kim ran off to the next hole not realising he had won the game. Garcia could’ve been royally chuffed with that one given how much of a pounding he had taken but saw the funny side in it and was quick to congratulate him on a great performance. Moreover, Jimenez conceding the hole to Furyk to hand the USA the trophy was a nice gesture. The putt was by no means a gimme and whilst I don’t think it would’ve made any difference to the outcome of the result overall (not using hindsight…), it was a top gesture. And Furyk was also quick to sympathise with Jimenez and commend him first and foremost before basking in the glory. Top stuff. Facebook Share on Twitter Share Twitter Share on Twitter 100 All 3 22 Sep 2008 16:37 TheEarlofSuave newest 0 1 22 Sep 2008 14:28 Think Fairestplay will be at his desk in the White House by now? A well thought out, mature response that encapsulates why America and Americans are held in such high esteem throughout the world. Still, in a nation where being Boo is cheered, Fairestplay comments are fully understandable. Facebook Twitter | Pick Share on Facebook No blame for Faldo as far as I’m concerned. Westwood, Garcia and Harrington just didn’t show and the only Europeans who punched their weight and above were Karlsson, Rose, McDowell and Poulter. You can’t win the Ryder Cup with just four guys playing well.Congratulations to the Yanks. They played the better golf throughout and I’m pleased that it was Furyk who got the winning point. He’s a decent bloke who respects the sport and his opponents. As for Boo, the less said the better. Share on Messenger | Pick Bondurant 22 Sep 2008 14:27 22 Sep 2008 16:50 22 Sep 2008 15:39 22 Sep 2008 17:28 Share on Facebook Twitter 0 1 Share on Facebook Reply 0 1 Share Reply 2 0 1 Share on Twitter Sportblog Reply slosh Share Share MouthoftheMersey | Pick Facebook I’m with you on both posts Chuck. 22 Sep 2008 15:14 QuinnMartin Report Share on Facebook 1 22 Sep 2008 9:44 Share on Pinterest chuckwalrus Twitter Report Reply 22 Sep 2008 13:46 RaydeChaussee slosh Share on Twitter • Spaniard’s record and form meant he was never likely to hand Europe bright start 22 Sep 2008 14:50 Report Share on Twitter Share on Twitter Charley Steiner=Europe Evander Holyfield=USAhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxL3ZNTnCY4# Deeks dcnole 0 1 Reply Support The Guardian Seems slightly unfair that the piece should allude to the behaviour of the US fans when the European fans, or specifically the Irish ones among them, were such an excruciating embarassment with their constant ole ole-ing, chants of ‘you’ll never beat the Irish’ (Harrington’s opponents may beg to differ on that one) and the wearing of their ‘wacky’ leprachaun outfits.They truly spoiled what was the best Ryder Cup since 1999. When will these little-Irelander’s get a life and stop infecting what should be glorious sporting occasions with their pathetic ‘look at me, look at me’-type idiocy. They did the same at the K Club, and behave in this way at every possible opportunity (including a rousing rendition of the above-mentioned Ole nonsense at an Oscars ceremony when some Irish actress picked up an award!). If any of you wacky Oirish are reading this, PLEASE, get a f*ckin life and stop embarassing your country. Share on Twitter Twitter Comments 69 Twitter Share on Facebook Twitter 0 1 Share on Twitter Report vomittingmeerkat 0 1 Facebook Share Facebook Facebook Twitter Share A great performance from the States and regardless of who was captain, I don’t think it would’ve made any difference. Harrington was particularly poor for the second tournament in a row, picking up only half a point. The likes of he, Westwood, Garcia and Jimenez were the ones people should’ve been looking to for inspiration but not one of them were part of a winning match which is a poor return. Poulter was immense and obviously deserved his captains pick. Justin Rose and Graeme McDowell had great debut tournaments and in that respect I feel Oliver Wilson was underused. He played his way in to the team over the last two years but was only involved in two matches, one of which he won over the impressive Mickelson/Kim pairing but was unfortunate to be up against a rootin’ tootin’ dear shootin’ Boo Weekly.All in all, USA more than deserved their win. The crowd and the team proved that the US interest in the Ryder Cup hasn’t waned despite their recent defeats which is more than a good thing for the history of the event. Bring on 2010! | Pick 22 Sep 2008 10:22 | Pick Reply Share on Facebook | Pick Reply JVIP 0 1 Share on Twitter Reply Azinger loads the front, Faldo loads the back. USA win so Azinger gets it right and Faldo is an idiot.Well, no, actually.The points from the first 4 pairings went 2 1/2 – 1 1/2 to Europe (and this should have been 3-1, Casey should never have needed to even get to the 18th just to halve a point). The points in the last 4 pairings were shared equally.It was in the middle four matches that the USA won the Ryder Cup, I don’t think you can really blame Faldo because the mid ranking USA players beat the mid ranking Europeans.Two very evenly matched teams played, the Americans, desevedly, won and that is sport. It’s pretty stupid to blame Faldo for this. Not that that will stop the likes of Donegan and his mates in the press box. | Pick | Pick 0 1 Share on Facebook | Pick farawayfan Reply The USA played out of their skins and would never be able to repeat that sort of performance again. However, the course was set up for target golf and apart from the distance, us ams would have loved to have a thrash round there. No rough. Nothing to stop grip-it-and-rip-it merchants having a field day.The Europeans did well without their top guns firing – maybe it was one week too many in the sun for Garcia, Harrington and Westwood after exhausting seasons.Faldo’s captainancy was quirky but never less than human. OK, his humour didn’t tickle the funny bones of revered journalists who no doubt double up at the wit of the Vicar of Diddly Squat but he was never bland. You imagine a Beckham or a Shearer in his place. Share on Facebook Facebook 0 1 Twitter jeremyjames Facebook 0 1 22 Sep 2008 15:46 | Pick Share on Facebook Facebook refergrec Share on WhatsApp 0 1 MTMorris | Pick comments (69)Sign in or create your Guardian account to join the discussion. Share on Facebook refergrecGet the same coverage. True propaganda. Sometimes you would go up to 10 minuites without seeing a European shot. The commentary was like eavesdropping on a redneck convention. They should be ashamed of themselves, but of course wont be. The US team was brilliant, fair-play to them. Report Share Ryder Cup 2008 Reply Share on Twitter First published on Sun 21 Sep 2008 19.06 EDT Sportblog Reply Facebook 0 1 50 Share Facebook Facebook Report Share Share Golf Twitter 22 Sep 2008 17:25 Share 0 1 Report chuckwalrus 22 Sep 2008 15:30 Reply unthreaded Report PaulieC23 | Pick Allout Share Dismantling of García by Kim the magnificent puts States on track Ryder Cup Share on Facebook Share on Facebook fairestplay and bondurantInteresting thoughts, now if you could crawl back under your rocks that’d be nice. I think all Europe fans will agree the US players totally deserved to win, but the US fans deserve, well, boo weekley and george bush. Well done.Onto Golf now. I believe Harrington does the same damage to Europe as Tiger has done to the US team before – he’s just so obsessed with himself and his own game he doesn’t really have time for teams. I’m not having a go at him, but some folks brains are wired differently and have to be to drive ’em to such success. You guys complaining about the commentary as fools and hypocrites. The Euro coverage is as slanted and full of propaganda as anything in the US. You just can’t deal with the fact that you lost and are trying to cover it up with insults. I’m sure you’ve convinced yourself that the European coverage is fair and evenhanded because you are brainwashed idiots!! The only one who should be ashamed is you for being so easily blinded by your nationalistic foolishness. You make me sick!! Show 25 Report Share on Facebook | Pick 22 Sep 2008 15:51 Share on Twitter recommendations Facebook Reply JezD oldest 0 1 Share on Facebook Share Richard Williams Report Share via Email Share on Twitter Twitter When the Spaniard’s suggestion of a joint concession was rejected, he rolled his putt home and then nodded to Kim to indicate that he should pick up his ball.Was this the move with which 007 tried to lure Auric Goldfinger to defeat at Royal St George’s almost half a century ago, inviting his opponent to pick up a short putt early in their match in order to be able to put greater pressure later on, when a similar putt arose at a more vital juncture? Perhaps Kim had read the same book, because yesterday he was falling for nothing. An eagle drifted majestically over the 2nd green as his second shot stopped five feet from the hole, giving him the opportunity for a birdie putt which put him into an early lead. The battle of wills was joined at the 4th, when García invited Kim to hole his three-foot birdie opportunity whereas the American conceded his opponent’s two-foot putt. It was at the long par-four 6th that García sowed the seeds of his defeat. His drive landed in the downslope of a bank above the winding creek, buried in a matted carpet of foot-long bluegrass. Lengthy discussions with the rules official ended with Kim muttering “You gotta do what you gotta do” before striding away to complete his par as García accepted a penalty drop on the way to a bogey that doubled the deficit.Real disaster, however, lurked at the par-five 7th, with its two carries over water. García’s second shot landed in the water in front of the green, as did its successor. The sun winked off the jewels in Kim’s USA belt buckle as the Spaniard took the long walk to concede the hole.García was deliberating over every shot, perhaps trying to disrupt his opponent’s remorseless rhythm. At the short 8th Kim hit his first false stroke into a sand trap, but got up and down to maintain his margin. His lead was reduced at the 10th, where his chip out of the deep greenside rough failed to make the green, but García immediately forfeited the gain with a tentative putt from 18 inches at the 11th. Arriving on the next tee in a strop even after receiving consoling words and an arm around his shoulder from José María Olazábal, he kicked over his golf bag as a prelude to dropping shots at the 12th and 13th. One hole later it was all over and Kim was raising his arms to an ecstatic gallery.”I’ve played with him a couple of times before and I know what he’s capable of,” García said afterwards. “There were a couple of misses on seven that were huge, and after that the short miss on 11 put the dagger in. It was a hard day – he played awesome and it’s hard when you get in this sort of situation. I felt like I couldn’t get anything going today.”Kim expressed a regard for his opponent that had not always been apparent in their frosty exchanges on the course. “He has a great Ryder Cup record,” he said. “I’ve looked up to him for a long time and I have a tremendous amount of respect for him.”It’s been the experience of a lifetime,” he added. “I got chills up my spine the whole day.” And as if the scale of the experience might still not have been understood by his listeners, he expressed it in the values best understood by professional golfers: “I wouldn’t trade this for 10 million dollars.” 22 Sep 2008 16:30 Share 22 Sep 2008 16:45 Facebook Share on Twitter 0 1 Twitter Threads collapsed Facebook Share on Twitter 0 1 Share on Facebook Share on Facebook Report Share on Facebook Share on Twitter 0 1 Reply Share Out of the 6 comments so far, 4 from Europeans and 2 from Americans (by the looks of it) the only insulting has come from the 2 Americans. In fact, 2 of the European comments praised the US team. And their only insults were of TV coverage, hardly a shock to anyone surely. fairestplay and theEarlofSuave, enjoy your win. While I enjoy your witty banter.”Nothing is more pathetic than seeing a European playing Golf in a Baseball Hat, and then losing in Golf, except maybe clinging to Team Golf because its the only type of golf British people can win at.”Do you write for the Office? 30 Rock maybe. I know Curb Your Enthusiasm!Why all the anger after winning a tournament that you don’t care about enough to comment on a blog about? The US players and crowd obviously didn’t care either.European arrogance – I agree with you there but there is an explanation, we’re just happy we’re not American, like when you’re a kid and realise that being male means you’ll never have to suffer childbirth. Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Facebook Report Sergio Garcia. Photographer: David J. Phillip/AP blogposts The first of Nick Faldo’s hunches went badly wrong yesterday as Sergio García, sent out to carry the European flag in the opening singles round, collapsed to an emphatic defeat at the hands of Anthony Kim, playing in his first Ryder Cup. Kim repaid the faith of Paul Azinger, the United States captain, by floating around the course in a bubble of self-confidence to crush the hopes of a Spaniard whose days as the youthful prodigy known as El Niño must now be consigned to history.Yesterday he was completely outmanoeuvred and outgunned by a man five years his junior. The chunky Kim played faster, harder and smarter, and his reward was the heaviest victory for a rookie in the competition since David Duval beat Jesper Parnevik by the same score as an avalanche of US singles successes buried Europe’s ambitions at Brookline in 1999. Faldo must have known that García’s exemplary Ryder Cup record rests on his Friday and Saturday performances. The Spaniard went into yesterday’s match with 14 wins, five defeats and four halved matches, but in four appearances in Sunday’s singles round he had accumulated only one victory against three defeats. Two of those losses, moreover, came when he had gone out high in the order, second behind Colin Montgomerie on both occasions, in 2002 and 2006. To expect the 28-year-old to set Europe’s ball rolling was therefore unrealistic, even more so in the light of his indifferent recent form. But as the two players prepared to set out at high noon, the atmosphere was boiling around the tee box. Behind them a grandstand full of home fans – many dressed like their team in red shirts, as Azinger had requested – held up signs reading “The streak ends today” and “Not on our turf” while chanting “U-S-A” and “K-I-M” in response to the Europeans clustered in a smaller side stand, who were serenading a moustachioed US television commentator with a chorus of “Are you Magnum in disguise?”. This, it seemed, was the real Amen Corner.García and Kim started out with three holes of the finest golf imaginable. Both responded to the surrounding fervour by producing excellent drives at the 1st, followed by superlative second shots. Encouraged by galleries occupying every inch of the ropes from tee to green on both sides of the fairway, Kim hit an eight-iron from 150 yards to two feet from the pin, and the roars had barely subsided when García followed him with a wedge from 130 yards to three feet. Sign in or create your Guardian account to recommend a comment Reply As with any major golfing event, it all comes down to putting. You can have all the good pairings you like, but if you can’t hole your putts, you lose. The USA putted much better, and won. (The turning point for me was the Mahan putt on 17 – a Casey win in that much and I think the result would’ve been different).The USA wanted it more. Boo, JB, Kim and Mahan were playing on the big stage for the first time and were simply inspired; Perry was motivated by the onset of the end of his career and a poor RC in 2004.The RC has done a 360. The European team now seems to be the one with the egos – the team spirit seemed to be pretty lacking (although when you’re getting beaten, it does tend to be that way). Garcia looked sullen when he realised he couldn’t live with Kim doing a ‘Garcia’ on him. Report Twitter Share on Twitter Twitter Report | Pick Share expanded Share on Twitter In what way does the article allude to the behaviour of the US fans other than saying the atmosphere was electric?! If it wasn’t for the Irish fans that were there, then the European crowd would’ve been silenced for pretty much the whole weekend. I think it’s a pretty ignorant view as well that they spoil the party although the Oscars thing seems to be a bit over the top.Irish fans always travel well and are much more often than not warmly received in all sports they travel to – the Cricket World Cup in 2007 is testament to that. They are loud, boisterous but they never cause any trouble other than presumingly sleeping with a member of your family which seems to be the only reason for that rather large chip on your shoulder. Facebook Share Share on Facebook 0 1 Though it may seem otherwise, nobody cares about team golf in America. There is simply nothing else to do in Kentucky if you haven’t noticed.How did the Rednecks do it? How did our Home Grown Hicks sneak out into the clubhouse and onto the course anyway? This was America’s B team without Tiger.How did our American Hicks beat a team of leg-shaving, arrogant, socially pampered Metrosexuals sent from The UK and Europe on what was supposed to be their day? I thought the UK and Europeans were supposed to teach the savages of the United States a lesson in Team Golf (a concept left out there only for the purpose of allowing British people the chance to ever win something in the Sport they Created.)Next time Europe is going to have to change it’s entire game plan. They are going to have to find Rednecks of their own in The UK and Europe that can play golf. Arrogance alone will not win the cup.The Davis Cup means more to Europeans than any other golf tournament out there today. Americans simply cannot be bothered, unless Cowtipping is the most popular activity normally available to the locals. I’d leave the house if all these Metrosexuals from Europe decided to play golf down the street from my house too.Nothing is more pathetic than seeing a European playing Golf in a Baseball Hat, and then losing in Golf, except maybe clinging to Team Golf because its the only type of golf British people can win at. | Pick Share DoneTheElephants rockadoodledo Report | Pick Report 0 1 Share on Twitter 22 Sep 2008 12:42 Report 25 Share on Facebook 0 1 | Pick | Pick 3 Oops, seems like I’ve tarred bondurant with suave’s brush! Sorry.I wonder if that suave bloke reckons he’s strickland? Sorry there was an error. Please try again later. If the problem persists, please contact Userhelp Nevermind Garcia. The biggest Euro turkey was Patrick Harrington (otherwise golfer of the year). Maybe be just doesn’t care for the Ryder Cup which is, after all, glorified corporate ambrose. Please select Personal abuse Off topic Legal issue Trolling Hate speech Offensive/Threatening language Copyright Spam Other Report Email (optional) Share on Facebook 22 Sep 2008 16:23 View more commentslast_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Participation goalposts moved

first_imgFabio Capello Mon 15 Dec 2008 19.01 EST … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Participation goalposts moved Olympic Games Matt Scott Since you’re here… Share on Facebook Cricket Share via Email Support The Guardian Shares00 In the build-up to the decisive announcement due today over how Sport England will divide £480m of public money for grass-roots sport, confusion has reigned over exactly what the funding body is trying to achieve.Government targets require that 1m more people will be involved in sport from 2012. However, Sport England’s chief executive, Jennie Price, seemed to effect a subtle but significant shift in what the organisation hopes to fulfil by describing the target as “1m people involved in more sport”. Even British Cycling’s chief executive, Ian Drake, seemed not to have been briefed when he said yesterday: “Sport England want to get half a million more people into sport by 2012.” Share on Twitter First published on Mon 15 Dec 2008 19.01 EST Olympic Games 2012 Digger Share on Facebook Topics That, according to Sport England, was an extrapolation of figures announced last week in which it trumpeted the 500,000-person increase in sports participation. It says last week’s data do not relate to the 2012 target and that it will only start the clock on the 1m figure today. It claims participation is only measured if an individual is taking part in 30 minutes’ moderate exercise three times a week. But with schools programmes expected to be confirmed as a central part of the strategy today – and easier to influence than adults’ clubs – there is dissatisfaction as to how transparent the benchmarks are.”In the past five years there have been so many different performance targets,” said Hugh Robertson, the shadow sports minister. “There’s considerable confusion over what is required. The difficult part is the performance-measuring of the funding.”Funding stumps KingIn an era of tension between the Bank of England and the prime minister, today could lead to a behind-the-scenes breakdown of a different kind, with Sport England the catalyst. The Bank’s governor, Mervyn King, leads the England and Wales Cricket Board’s Chance to Shine grass-roots foundation, which received a written pledge for £10m of National Sports Foundation (NSF) funding from the then chancellor, Gordon Brown. But following Sport England’s restructuring, the NSF was disbanded, putting in jeopardy that pledge. Whether the funding body honours Brown’s promise or uses the NSF’s dissolution as reason to rip up the accord is said to be perplexing King at a time when he has enough on his mind.No ticket to ride for BBCBBC Sport grandees had cause to regret the decision to relocate their operations to Manchester in 2012 after being stranded in Liverpool by train failures following Sunday night’s Sports Personality of the Year show. Among the familiar faces caught in the travel chaos yesterday was the presenter John Inverdale. There was also the issue of Liverpool’s bid for the SPOTY event not exactly living up to its billing. When the city submitted its bid to the BBC, a promotional video outlined how it would pull the stars of Liverpool Football Club on the night. As it turned out, the number of Anfield’s finest among the 9,000 who travelled to Liverpool was precisely none. At least Everton’s Phil Neville made it to present an award.Barwick in demandBrian Barwick, below, is a man much in demand. The Football Association chief executive leaves the body next month but his almost unique position as having led negotiations on some of the biggest sports-rights properties, both as a seller and as a buyer, has already led to contacts from major agencies in the market. One thing he can be ruled out from is the BBC’s head-of-sport vacancy. Barwick’s decision to sell England football rights to ITV and Setanta riled the corporation, and Barwick himself believes a return would be regress.Joke lost in translationA quiz set up by the FA for the media yesterday asked: “What was Fabio Capello’s nickname as a player?” It was “Il ragioniere”. But what came as a surprise to Italian speakers present was the FA’s translation. “The surveyor” said the quizmaster, the director of communications, Adrian Bevington. A bit of FA spin there, it seems. For why, when Capello’s tax affairs have been the subject of an investigation by the Italian authorities for the past 11 months, would the FA risk the mockery of media wags and use the more accepted denotation of the word ragioniere: “The accountant”?• The following clarification was printed in the Guardian’s Corrections and clarifications column, Monday 22 December 2008. In the article above, we said a Football Association quiz had mistranslated Fabio Capello’s nickname as a player, Il ragioniere, as “the surveyor” when it should be “the accountant”. The FA’s quizmaster points out that he was correctly translating another nickname for Capello, Il geometra. Olympic Games 2012 Read more This article is more than 10 years old Share on LinkedIn BBC England cricket team This article is more than 10 years old Share on Pinterest news Share via Email Share on Messenger Share on Twitter England Sign up to the Spin – our weekly cricket round-up Digger Share on WhatsApp Reuse this contentlast_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Friday Roundup

first_img Learn More & Register More on Major League Baseball’s FCPA scrutiny, Siemens, across the pond, ripple, and for the reading stack.It’s all here in the Friday roundup.MLB’s FCPA ScrutinyThis prior post highlighted Major League Baseball’s apparent FCPA scrutiny. According to this Sports Illustrated article:“Sports Illustrated has learned that the U.S. Department of Justice has begun a sweeping probe into possible corruption tied to the recruitment of international players, centered on potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.[…]SI has also obtained a thick dossier of documentation that was provided to the FBI at the beginning of the probe. The trove of evidence—the material that largely persuaded the bureau to launch an investigation—includes videotapes, photographs, confidential legal briefs, receipts, copies of player visas and passport documents, internal club emails and private communications by franchise executives in 2015 and 2016.[…]The dossier given to the FBI suggests the extent to which some MLB personnel are aware of—and brazenly discuss—this unscrupulous culture and the potential for corruption. While both the league office and other teams are mentioned in the files obtained by SI, the Los Angeles Dodgers, a franchise with extensive scouting and development operations in the Caribbean, figure most prominently in the dossier.Sources told SI that the probe began when a whistle-blowing MLB insider provided the FBI with information last year during spring training. The case eventually landed in Washington D.C. where the Fraud Section of the Department of Justice is headquartered.[…]Among the witnesses already subpoenaed: player development staffers with ties to the Atlanta Braves, and Manny Paula, a certified agent and cofounder of the MVP Sports Management and Consulting Agency.”SiemensAccording to this German newspaper report:“When trading medical devices from Siemens bribes flowed in China for years. This is said by more than 40 judgments of Chinese criminal courts. In almost every case, middlemen had bribed hospital officials to buy Siemens products, such as CT scanners. The judgments were smeared not only with cash, but also with gifts: watches, clothes, cameras, even real estate. In addition, there were shops where two former employees of Siemens had bribed Chinese hospital directors. Many such directors were convicted; to some high prison sentences. A former Siemens employee was given three years probation.The Munich-based industrial group said on request, a separate, comprehensive analysis of Chinese judgments show that competitors “a similar number of operations exists.” Siemens further stated that “China’s usual middlemen have limited influence”. These companies worked very independently. As a rule, Siemens reviews the books and accounts of middlemen every three years or, more frequently, suspicions.According to Siemens, the judgments show that the Chinese state is increasingly taking action against corruption. “We welcome and support this development.” Shocked by lawsuits affecting business from 2004 to 2014 , Siemens has been investigating its medical device trading business in China since mid- 2016 . There are two internal audit reports of 7 March 2017 and from 15 . January 2018 , but remain under lock and key. The content of these reports is silent. Siemens has meanwhile drastically reduced the number of middlemen in China, to the current level of around 300 Companies. This happened for several reasons; among other things, to reduce the risk of illegal acts.”As highlighted in this prior post, the still record-setting 2008 FCPA enforcement action against Siemens A.G. was primarily based on the fact that the company had its shares listed on a U.S. exchange and was thus subject to the FCPA’s books and records and internal controls provisions. In 2014 Siemens “delist[ed] its American Depositary Receipts (ADR) from the New York Stock Exchange and terminated “its reporting obligations (deregistration) to the American Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).”A delisting of course does not remove Siemens from the reach of the FCPA.  There still is the 78dd-3 prong of the FCPA, but the jurisdictional reach of it is the most demanding found in the FCPA. It requires “while in the territory of the United States, corruptly to make use of the mails or any means or instrumentality of interstate commerce or to do any other act in furtherance of” of a bribery scheme.Across the PondThe U.K. Serious Fraud office recently announced:“Natalie Pearce has been charged by requisition with conspiracy to make corrupt payments contrary to Section 1 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 and Section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906. These charges follow those already made against Dr Cansun Guralp and Andrew Bell who appeared before Westminster Magistrates’ Court in August earlier this year. The SFO alleges that three individuals conspired together to corruptly make payments to a public official and employee of the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources (KIGAM).”For prior posts on the underlying enforcement action, see here and here.RippleAs highlighted here: “[Och-Ziff] has reached a $28.75 million class-action settlement with shareholders who said the company misled them about U.S. probes into its involvement in alleged bribery in five African countries.”Call it another ripple effect of FCPA scrutiny and enforcement. (See here for the article titled “FCPA Ripples.”) The many ripples of Och-Ziff’s FCPA scrutiny and enforcement (see here) far exceed the $412 million the company paid in 2016 to resolve an FCPA enforcement action (see here).For the Reading StackThe most recent edition of the always informative Debevoise FCPA Update is here with articles about the construction and life sciences industries.Some interesting observations regarding the recent Petrobras enforcement action (see here, here and here for prior posts) in articles here by Paul Weiss attorneys and here by Jenner Block attorneys. FCPA Institute – Boston (Oct. 3-4) A unique two-day learning experience ideal for a diverse group of professionals seeking to elevate their FCPA knowledge and practical skills through active learning. Learn more, spend less. CLE credit is available.last_img read more

July 21, 2019
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Texas MA 2016 The Lawyers Firms and Deals

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July 20, 2019
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Minority students widely underrepresented in autism identification study shows

first_imgMay 4 2018In education circles, it is widely accepted that minorities are overrepresented in special education. New research from the University of Kansas has found, in terms of autism, minorities are widely underrepresented in special education. The underrepresentation varies widely from state to state and shows that students from all backgrounds are not being identified accurately, resulting in many students, especially those from minority backgrounds, not receiving services that are crucial to their education.Jason Travers, associate professor of special education at KU, led a study that analyzed autism identification rates for every state. Travers then compared the percentage of minority students with autism to the percentage of white students with autism in each state and compared rates for each group to the rate for white students with autism in California. The analyses looked at data from 2014, which was three years after federal regulations changed from five racial categories to seven. It was also the most current year for data analyzed by the Centers for Disease Control on the prevalence of autism. Travers’ research had previously shown underrepresentation of minorities in autism, but the change warranted a renewed look.”A considerable change in demographic reporting happened at the federal all the way down to the local level,” Travers said. “So individual schools had to change their reports and send them to the state, who then sent them to the federal government. So, for several years we’ve had an incomplete picture of autism identification rates.”The change allowed schools to report students, including those with autism, as belonging to “two or more races” for the first time, and also established two separate categories for Pacific Islander and Asian students who previously were reported as one group. The report, co-authored with Michael Krezmien of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, was published in the journal Exceptional Children.The data showed dramatic underrepresentation of minority students with autism in the majority of states, especially for African-American and Hispanic students. Forty states underidentified African-American students with autism when compared to white students in the same state, and 43 states underidentified Hispanic students. When the rate for each minority was compared to the rate for white students with autism in California, the data showed nearly every state underidentified minority students with autism.Not one state had higher percentages of students from those minority groups identified at higher rates than whites, and no state had African-American or Hispanic students listed at the same percentage of white students with autism in California.”We suspected that, although the U.S. has a similar amount of Hispanic and African-American people, children with autism in both groups would be underrepresented compared to white students. We also didn’t know what the rates would be for students identified as being two or more races, Pacific Islander and Asian students due to these being new federal reporting categories,” Travers said.California was used as a comparison for the other states as it is both the largest state by population and widely considered to have outstanding infrastructure for identifying and serving students with autism. The identification rate in California also was similar to the prevalence rate recently reported by the CDC. As the largest state, it is also the state least vulnerable to statistical fluctuation in data, Travers said.While underrepresentation of minority students with autism was common, there was wide variance from state to state. For example, in Kansas, African-American students were overrepresented. Iowa was the only other state where that was also the case. No states overidentified Hispanic students, and 42 states underidentified them.Related StoriesHigh levels of acid in processed foods could affect fetus’ developing brainNeuroscientists find anatomical link between cognitive and perceptual symptoms in autismProblem behaviors may provide clues on gastrointestinal issues in children with autism”Almost every state in the nation underidentified African-Americans. We’re not sure why that happened, but it did,” Travers said. “Another notable finding about Kansas is Hispanic students continued to be underidentified.”Students of two or more races were proportionately identified in the majority of states, though a handful showed both under and overidentification. Forty-six of 49 states, including the District of Columbia, had a lower percentage of white students identified than California. No states identified Asian students with autism at the same percentage as white students in California, the comparison group. For its part, California significantly underidentified every minority group when compared with their white peers with autism. Numerous other fluctuations in representation were found in the data as well.The wide variance of representation shows a number of factors at play. States are identifying minority students with autism in ways different from white students, but also in ways different from those in California, Travers said.”Some of that just may be statistics, but when you see almost all states identify children with autism at rates that are about or less than half of the rate for white kids in California, that seems pretty concerning,” Travers said. “Fundamentally, that means there are kids with autism who are not being identified, and therefore probably aren’t receiving the kinds of services we know can help. But there are also specific groups of minority children who are being identified at rates significantly lower than their white peers.”The findings counter the prevailing notion in special education that minority students are overrepresented in special education because the system is being used as a tool of oppression. Instead, it could mean school officials are not identifying minority students with autism due to longstanding concerns about placing too many minority students in special education, at least in terms of autism, Travers said. Worse yet, the problem appears to be nationwide. If the data showed underrepresentation in only a few states or in one geographic region it could reasonably be explained as caused by that states’ policies or regional factors. Instead, Travers said, the findings suggest inaccurate autism identification is a more important problem than overrepresentation in special education, and that more must be done to ensure equitable access to specialized treatment.White students and families traditionally have more access to autism diagnoses and interventions, which can be expensive, Travers said. However, he doesn’t believe white students are overrepresented in the autism category. Instead, Travers suspects well-intentioned school leaders may be inadvertently denying minority students an autism eligibility due to concerns about exacerbating the widely perceived problem of minority overrepresentation. Travers hopes to study whether students are being accurately identified within their states in future research. He also hopes to determine if certain factors can more accurately predict autism identification by using a more sophisticated analysis of regional, school district, school and student-level factors.For now, the data shows that underidentification of minority students with autism is happening across the country and that a better understanding of accurate identification is needed.”These trends are prevalent across the country,” Travers said. “I think the focus on overrepresentation of minority students in special education overlooks the more important issue of accurate identification. The field should focus on ensuring accurate identification of minority students with disabilities, including those who need autism-specific services.”Source: http://news.ku.edu/2018/04/23/study-shows-minority-students-underrepresented-autism-diagnoses-rates-vary-widely-statelast_img read more

July 20, 2019
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Geneticists decry book on race and evolution

first_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The letter was spearheaded by five population geneticists who had informally discussed the book at conferences, says co-organizer Rasmus Nielsen of the University of California, Berkeley. “There was a feeling that our research had been hijacked by Wade to promote his ideological agenda,” Nielsen says. “The outrage … was palpable.” Molly Przeworski of Columbia University, another organizer, says the group “tried to contact population geneticists whose work had been cited by Wade.” They had no trouble getting signatures, racking up 100 within the first week, she says.The letter organizers and the editors of the Book Review kept the letter under embargo until its publication today and declined to make it available to Wade for an immediate response. But in previous ripostes to the book’s critics, most notably in a 19 June Huffington Post article titled “Five Critics Say You Shouldn’t Read This ‘Dangerous’ Book,” Wade charged that his critics were “indoctrinated in the social-science creed that prohibits any role for evolution in human affairs” and contended that the book’s central argument “has not been challenged by any serious scientist.”Letter organizers say they hope to demonstrate that the opposite is true. For example, Sarah Tishkoff of the University of Pennsylvania says she signed the letter because “[m]y own research was used as scientific proof of concepts such as there being between three and five races.” Tishkoff says that her work on the genetics of diverse African populations does not support this claim. Adds David Reich of Harvard University: “Our findings do not even provide a hint of support in favor of Wade’s guesswork.”*Update, 9 August, 6:05 a.m.:  Nicholas Wade has issued a statement in response to the letter. He writes:This letter is driven by politics, not science. I am confident that most of the signatories have not read my book and are responding to a slanted summary devised by the organizers.As no reader of the letter could possibly guess, “A Troublesome Inheritance” argues that opposition to racism should be based on principle, not on the anti-evolutionary myth that there is no biological basis to race.Unfortunately many social scientists have long denied that there is a biological basis to race. This creed, prominent throughout the academic world, increasingly impedes research.  Biologists risk damaging their careers if they write explicitly about race. Needless to say, this makes it hard to explore the different evolutionary paths that human populations have taken through history since the dispersal from the African homeland 50,000 years ago.“A Troublesome Inheritance” seeks to explain how race can be understood without racism. … I hope that readers will see through the lack of specifics in their charges and judge my book for themselves.Perhaps I could point out an error in one of the few specific statements in their letter. They charge me with saying that “recent natural selection has led to worldwide differences in I.Q. test results.”   I say no such thing. What I do say (p. 193) is that “It may be hazardous to compare the IQ scores of different races if allowance is not made for differences in wealth, nutrition and other factors that influence IQ.”  …I would urge all the geneticists who signed the letter, several of whom I count as friends, to now read my book and judge to what extent, if any, their condemnation was justified.center_img Email A best-seller by former New York Times science writer Nicholas Wade about recent human evolution and its potential effects on human cultures has drawn critical reviews since its spring publication. Now, nearly 140 senior human population geneticists around the world, many of whose work was cited in the book, have signed a letter to The New York Times Book Review stating that Wade has misinterpreted their work. The letter criticizes “Wade’s misappropriation of research from our field to support arguments about differences among human societies,” and is slated to appear in the 10 August issue of the Book Review. It’s available online today.The book, A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History, contends that human races are a biological reality and that recent human evolution has led to racial differences in economic and social behavior.  In the book, Wade suggests that such genetic differences may help explain why some people live in tribal societies and some in advanced civilizations, why African-Americans are allegedly more violent than whites, and why the Chinese may be good at business.The book has received some blistering reviews from both scientists and science writers, including one by David Dobbs in The New York Times Book Review, and some scientists weighed in with blogs as well. Now, geneticists have crafted a joint response, concluding that “there is no support from the field of population genetics for Wade’s conjectures.” The list of signatories reads like a who’s who of researchers in the field and includes such well-known geneticists as Evan Eichler of the University of Washington, Seattle; David Goldstein of Duke University; and Michael Hammer of the University of Arizona.last_img read more

July 20, 2019
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Seabird losses from Deepwater Horizon oil spill estimated at hundreds of thousands

first_imgThe 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill is often cited as the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history—yet its impacts on the marine life of the Gulf of Mexico have gone largely undetermined. Now, new findings published this month in Marine Ecology Progress Series estimate that the number of seabirds lost as a result of the spill may number well into the hundreds of thousands. Birds are especially vulnerable to oil, which can coat their feathers and cause death by dehydration, starvation, or drowning. Seabird mortalities can easily be underestimated following a spill as bodies are lost at sea or go undiscovered. So researchers turned to two different estimation methods—one whereby total mortalities were estimated from the actual number of dead birds recovered, and another in which information on the geographic extent of the oil slick and seabird densities were used to estimate potential mortalities. The scientists found that although the two approaches were based on different data sets, they returned roughly similar estimates of 600,000 and 800,000 oil-related seabird deaths, respectively. Although the number of seabird mortalities from the spill likely centers around 700,000, sources of uncertainty in the estimates indicate the number of deaths could actually lie anywhere between 300,000 and 2 million. In comparison, an estimated 250,000 seabirds were lost during the Exxon Valdez oil spill, and longline fisheries are estimated to contribute to 160,000 to 320,000 seabird deaths globally each year. For some seabirds, such as the laughing gull (Leucophaeus atricilla), the Deepwater Horizon impact translates into an estimated loss of more than 30% of its Gulf of Mexico population. Energy company BP faces civil penalties based in part on the number of birds and other wildlife lost in the spill, therefore the mortality estimates could influence the amount the company will be required to pay.*Update, 31 October, 4:29 p.m.: In response to this study, BP has issued a statement noting that the research was funded by The Murray Firm and Cossich, Sumich, Parsiola & Taylor LLC, two law firms representing clients with environmental impact claims against BP. You can read the statement in full here.last_img read more

July 20, 2019
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Tensions surround release of new Rosetta comet data

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) DARMSTADT, GERMANY—The comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, which the Rosetta spacecraft is now orbiting, is by all accounts a fascinating chunk of dust and ice. This week, scientists using the spacecraft’s high-resolution camera presented some staggering images of the duck-shaped comet at a planetary science conference in Tucson, Arizona. They showed the first color images of the comet. They showed dust grains being ejected from the surface, arcs that could be traced back, presumably, to geysers of sublimating ice. And they showed brightness variations less than 10 centimeters apart—which could indicate that they have found sparkling bits of ice peeking through a black crust of dust.But Rosetta’s operator, the European Space Agency (ESA), has released none of these images to the public. Nor have any of these images been presented in Darmstadt, Germany, where scientists at ESA’s mission control are preparing to drop the Philae lander to the comet surface on Wednesday. Project scientist Matt Taylor was reduced to learning about the new results at the Arizona conference by thumbing through Twitter feeds on his phone.For the Rosetta mission, there is an explicit tension between satisfying the public with new discoveries and allowing scientists first crack at publishing papers based on their own hard-won data. “There is a tightrope there,” says Taylor, who’s based at ESA’s European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) in Noordwijk, the Netherlands. But some ESA officials are worried that the principal investigators for the spacecraft’s 11 instruments are not releasing enough information. In particular, the camera team, led by principal investigator Holger Sierks, has come under special criticism for what some say is a stingy release policy. “It’s a family that’s fighting, and Holger is in the middle of it, because he holds the crown jewels,” says Mark McCaughrean, an ESA senior science adviser at ESTEC. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrycenter_img Email Allowing scientists to withhold data for some period is not uncommon in planetary science. At NASA, a 6-month period is typical for principal investigator–led spacecraft, such as the MESSENGER mission to Mercury, says James Green, the director of NASA’s planetary science division in Washington, D.C. However, Green says, NASA headquarters can insist that the principal investigator release data for key media events. For larger strategic, or “flagship,” missions, NASA has tried to release data even faster. The Mars rovers, such as Curiosity, have put out images almost as immediately as they are gathered.ESA has a different structure from NASA’s. It relies much more on contributions from member-states, whereas NASA pays for most instrument development directly. On Rosetta, for example, ESA hasn’t paid for very much of the €100 million camera, called OSIRIS, and therefore has less control over how its data is disseminated. “It’s easier for [NASA] to negotiate [data release] because we’re paying the bills,” Green says, whereas ESA has to do it “by influence.”Prior to Rosetta’s launch in 2004, an embargo of 6 months was set for all the instrument teams. McCaughrean points out that mission documents also stipulate that instrument teams provide “adequate support” to ESA management in its communication efforts—but that term has been debated by the camera team. “I believe that [the OSIRIS camera team’s support] has by no means been adequate, and they believe it has,” McCaughrean says. “But they hold the images, and it’s a completely asymmetric relationship.”So far, OSIRIS has not released any images from its closest orbits at 10 kilometers above the comet. The vast majority of publicly released images have come from navigation cameras, engineering instruments that ESA management has more control over. OSIRIS has about five times better resolution than the navigation cameras.Sierks, of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Göttingen, Germany, feels that the OSIRIS team has already been providing a fair amount of data to the public—about one image every week. Each image his team puts out is better than anything that has ever been seen before in comet research, he says. Furthermore, he says other researchers, unaffiliated with the Rosetta team, have submitted papers based on these released images, while his team has been consumed with the daily task of planning the mission. After working on OSIRIS since 1997, Sierks feels that his team should get the first shot at using the data.“Let’s give us a chance of a half a year or so,” he says. He also feels that his team has been pressured to release more data than other instruments. “Of course there is more of a focus on our instrument,” which he calls “the eyes of the mission.”Another reason why Rosetta instrument teams have been slow to release information is that some of them have submitted papers to Science, which, upon acceptance, carries an embargo that forbids public discussion of specific results in the papers. But some ESA officials think that team members have become too fearful about disclosing everyday discoveries. Because of concerns over embargoes, the team has only reluctantly disclosed the dimensions and volume of the comet, for instance, and it has yet to publicly describe the comet’s albedo, or reflectivity.At a press briefing on Tuesday in Darmstadt, a reporter asked Fred Jansen, the project manager, if the Wednesday landing event would include any new images from Sierks’s OSIRIS camera. “We definitely intend to squeeze these out of him,” Jansen said. “There is an agreement that we’ll get pictures tomorrow.”To read more Rosetta coverage, visit our Rosetta collection page.last_img read more

July 20, 2019
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Ebola vaccine works offering 100 protection in African trial

first_imgThe vaccine, first developed by researchers at the Public Health Agency of Canada, consists of the Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV), which causes disease in livestock but not people, with the Ebola surface protein stitched into it. It is one of two vaccines currently being tested in the Ebola-stricken countries; the other one is produced by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). The study of the Merck vaccine was led by Ana Maria Henao-Restrepo of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, together with colleagues at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in Oslo, the Guinean Ministry of Health, and others.The decision to start the trial was taken in October, but it didn’t get off the ground until March. By then, Ebola cases had already begun to plummet, and they were scattered across a large area in Guinea. To show efficacy in a standard randomized controlled trial, the researchers would have had to enroll far more people than was feasible.Instead, they opted for a design called ring vaccination, in which only contacts of new Ebola patients, as well as the contacts’ contacts, were vaccinated. The rings, or clusters, were randomized; in 48 of them, vaccination occurred as soon as possible after the detection of the Ebola case in their community. In the 42 other clusters, the vaccination teams came to give the shots three weeks later. The researchers then counted the number of new Ebola cases in each ring; because they weren’t sure how long it takes for the vaccine’s protection to kick in, they only included cases that occurred at least 10 days after the rings were randomized to either arm in their primary analysis of the data. There were zero such cases among the  2014 people who were vaccinated right away, and 16 among the 2380 who got the shot 3 weeks later. That translates to 100% vaccine efficacy, at least in this study, the researchers write.The idea of a ring vaccination design, never before used in a formal vaccine study, “was absolutely very creative,” says Osterholm, and it allowed the team to follow the epidemic wherever it went. “Had this been a standard, straightforward randomized controlled trial, we would never had this answer.””It surprised me how quickly you can intervene with a vaccination and have an effect,” says Jeremy Farrar, the head of the Wellcome Trust research charity, which co-funded the study. “It’s possible to do that sort of complex work in very, very complex environments—ethically, socially, culturally and scientifically. You can do it. That is a revelation for many people.” The outcome was so convincing that the trial’s data and safety monitoring board-an independent group watching over the safety of participants—recommended to end it in its current form, and start vaccinating all clusters immediately from now on, which the team has now started doing. The vaccine should also be rolled out in Sierra Leone, says Osterholm, which also still has cases. It may well help to finally bring the number of cases to zero, he says.WHO director-general Margaret Chan called the study “exciting” at a press conference this morning but cautioned that follow-up studies are needed. “If proven effective this is going to be a game-changer. It will change the management of the current Ebola outbreak and future outbreaks,” Chan said.There were only seven new cases of Ebola last week, WHO reported its most recent situation report on the epidemic: four in Guinea and three in Sierra Leone. That’s the lowest in well over a year, but WHO has warned that the disease can easily flare up again. There were only 12 cases one week in May, for instance, but the virus bounced back to more than 30 cases per week in July.*Correction, 4 August, 7:34 a.m.: This story originally said the researchers only included cases that occurred at least 10 days after vaccination. In fact, they included cases starting 10 days after randomization.With reporting by Kai Kupferschmidt Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe A highly unusual clinical trial in Guinea has shown for the first time that an Ebola vaccine protects people from the deadly virus. The study, published online today by The Lancet, shows that the injection offered contacts of Ebola cases 100% protection starting 10 days after they received a single shot of the vaccine, which is produced by Merck. Scientists say the vaccine could help to finally bring an end to the epidemic in West Africa, now more than 18 months old.”This will go down in history as one of those hallmark public health efforts,” says Michael Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy in Twin Cities, Minnesota, who wasn’t involved in the study. “We will teach about this in public health schools.””It’s a wonderful result and a fantastic illustration of how vaccines can be developed very quickly and can be used in an outbreak situation to control the disease,” says Adrian Hill, a vaccine researcher at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom, also not involved in the work.center_img Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

July 20, 2019
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Video reveals how iconic frogs embryos escape death

first_imgRed-eyed tree frog embryos are famous for their Houdini-like behavior. The unhatched young of this neon green Central American rainforest amphibian (Agalychnis callidryas)—well known for its big, bulging eyes and fat, orange toes—can break out of their eggs at a moment’s notice if attacked by a snake, even before they are fully developed. Now, biologists have learned the secret of this rapid egress (see video). Researchers in Panama collected branches with newly deposited egg masses attached to the leaves, and used high-speed video in the lab to watch the escape in slow motion. When they jiggled the egg mass as an attacking snake would, the eggs started to shake. Inside each egg, the embryo thrashed around as if using force to break out. But the researchers also noticed the embryos were repeatedly opening and closing their mouths and that fluid began to leak out just in front of the embryo’s snout, even though the snout hadn’t made contact with the membrane until after the leaking started. Then the embryo stuck its snout through and squeezed out. Suspecting enzymes were creating this escape hatch (when most frog embryos are ready to hatch, they secrete enzymes from their heads that slowly degrade the egg membrane), the team scoured red-eyed tree frog embryo heads using electron microscopy and found clusters of glands on the snouts that were packed prior to hatching but were empty in newly hatched tadpoles. Thus, the embryos use both physical force and chemistry to foil the snake, the scientists report today in the Journal of Experimental Biology. Up to 80% can escape unharmed. By studying how the embryos coordinated both the secretion of the enzyme and the body movements, the researchers hope to better understand how the frogs—and other animals—are able to respond so quickly to threats.last_img read more