Atletico Madrid coach Simeone unsurprised Bayern Munich want Lucasby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAtletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone isn’t surprised Bayern Munich want to sign Lucas Hernandez.Simeone was keen to turn attention onto the pitch, but repeatedly fielded questions about those who could be on their way out of the Wanda Metropolitano this winter.”We know that until the window closes we cannot be calm,” Simeone said when asked about Lucas Hernandez’s future.”There is always the possibility when you have extraordinary players that big clubs like Bayern Munich will want them.”I live in the present and today we have him, like [Diego] Godin, [Jan] Oblak, Filipe [Luis] and Juanfran.”We have to look at what really matters to us, which is Sevilla.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say
Kane raps teammates as England slide to first qualifying defeat in ten yearsby Paul Vegas14 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham striker Harry Kane rapped team-mates as England slid to their first qualifying defeat in ten years.Skipper Kane gave Gareth Southgate’s men a perfect start with a fifth-minute penalty before the Czech Republic’s pair Jakub Brabec and Zdenek Ondrasek rocked the Three Lions.Kane fumed: “It was down to us. We went ahead early and had the perfect start to an away game. After that we were sloppy with the ball, they scored not long after, and we just didn’t move it as quickly as we normally do.“We weren’t fighting, we weren’t pressing as much as we do. We gave the ball away too cheaply, especially in the first half.“We had a couple of chances to put the game to bed but didn’t and unfortunately gave one away at the end. It’s a bit of a wake-up call.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
outbackEach bowl week, before teams engage in fierce competition on the field, they sometimes participate in friendly competition off it. Such was the case with Tennessee and Northwestern tonight. The two teams are in Tampa for the Outback Bowl, and both squads made it out to Splitsville for some pool and bowling. Who are you rooting for in tonight’s bowling competition, @Vol_Football or @NUFBFamily?? pic.twitter.com/Vt0x6cDGAq— Outback Bowl (@outbackbowl) December 27, 2015The game is heating up! #FootballInParadise pic.twitter.com/9TVFg62XAW— Outback Bowl (@outbackbowl) December 28, 2015. @NUFBFamily is in full swing pic.twitter.com/99hVZNvJBr— Outback Bowl (@outbackbowl) December 27, 2015Looks like a good time is being had by all. We don’t think the players will be as friendly on the field as they were on the lanes though.
Liberal MP Bob Nault, left, Grassy Narrows Chief Rudy Turtle, and Indigenous Services Minister Seamus O’Regan meet after a four hour meeting. Photo: Brittany Hobson/APTNBrittany HobsonAPTN NewsIt’s been two years since the federal government committed to a specialized health facility for Grassy Narrows First Nation, but despite a planned meeting with Minister of Indigenous Services Seamus O’Regan, the community is no closer to an agreement.O’Regan visited the Northwestern Ontario community Wednesday afternoon for what was supposed to be a feast with members and the signing of a memorandum of agreement with Chief Rudy Turtle and council.But that’s not what happened.Instead Turtle and O’Regan engaged in private negotiations for nearly four hours.No agreement was reached between the two, only a promise for more conversations.Turtle called the agreement inadequate.“The minister came in today and he was hoping we would sign a memorandum of agreement but the proposal he put forward wasn’t good enough,” said Turtle.(Members of Grassy Narrows wait outside a meeting between O’Regan and Turtle. Photo: Brittany Hobson/APTN)The community has been living with the long-term effects of mercury poisoning after a paper mill in Dryden, ON dumped contaminates in the nearby English-Wabigoon River system in the 1960s.For decades members suffer from impaired vision, loss of hearing and speech and cognitive function, along with mental health issues linked to the mercury poisoning.A feasibility study for the treatment centre was completed last fall and came with an estimated 30 year cost of $88.7 million.Construction has yet to begin on the new centre.Details of the proposed agreement weren’t released but Turtle said it didn’t include a sufficient dollar amount.He also said the government was proposing to build an assisted living facility not a specialized treatment centre.Turtle could not sign off the agreement because it doesn’t address the on-going issues.He said the community needs more than a, “temporary Band-Aid fix.”Following the meeting O’Regan told reporters the government and chief and council have the same objectives in mind.“We are getting very close. We made some steps today. This is what negotiation looks like it takes it own course,” he said.(Chrissy Isaac confronted O’Regan after no agreement for a treatment centre was negotiated. Photo: Brittany Hobson/APTN)Meanwhile during Question Period in Ottawa, NDP MP Charlie Angus called out the Liberals for failing to keep their commitment.“The people of Grassy Narrows have suffered 50 years of lies, cover-ups and broken promises…two years ago this prime minister promised that spring there would be shovels in the ground…enough of broken promises. Where is the money?” asked Angus.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, “we remain steadfast in our commitment to build a health facility in Grassy Narrows.”For the people of Grassy Narrows Wednesday’s events proved to be difficult and frustrating.Chrissy Isaacs confronted the minister calling his actions disrespectful.Community member Chrissy Isaacs confronts O’Regan. She says it was disrespectful for the minister to not meet with the rest of the community. A feast was prepared at the school and more than 100 students waited to meet the minister. pic.twitter.com/xpiaFuNQPx— Brittany Hobson (@bhobs22) May 29, 2019The mother of three says her youngest is dealing with the effects of mercury poisoning.She hopes to one day see a generation of people who aren’t sick.O’Regan said discussions will continue over the next coming days.Turtle says he will continue to push for a fair and adequate firstname.lastname@example.org@bhobs22
The rivalry between Ohio State and Michigan is about to get a little chillier. The OSU men’s hockey team will take on Michigan outdoors in the “Frozen Diamond Faceoff” at Progressive Field, home of the Cleveland Indians, on Jan. 15, 2012, at 5:05 p.m. This will be the first outdoor collegiate hockey game in the state of Ohio. OSU will be the home team in the neutral-site game and it will be played on a regulation-sized rink. Mark Shapiro, president of the Cleveland Indians, said in a Thursday press conference that he expects a full house for the game. Capacity at Progressive Field is 43,441. “We expect the place to be sold out,” he said. “I think recognizing how passionate the fan base is for Ohio State, recognizing that Michigan fans are extremely mobile and there also are a lot in the state of Ohio, and again the rivalry, we think (it) certainly sparks some interest.” Shapiro said the game will be a “unique” event, but they are staying “open and flexible” to hosting future hockey games, he said. This will be second time the OSU men’s hockey team has played outdoors. The Buckeyes previously faced off against Wisconsin in Lambeau Field, the home of the Green Bay Packers, on Feb. 11, 2006. OSU lost 4-2. Michigan has played in three outdoor games, including a game in 2010 at Michigan Stadium versus Michigan State. The game set a world record for attendance at a hockey game with 85,451 fans in attendance, according to the Guiness Book of World Records. Prior to Thursday’s announcement, the official OSU athletics website, ohiostatebuckeyes.com, changed the venue for the game against Michigan scheduled for Jan. 14, 2012, from Value City Arena to “TBA.” The game will be a part of “Indians Snow Days,” the second season-long event running from Nov. 25 through Jan. 16 at Progressive Field, in which fans can ice skate and snow tube at the stadium. A presale for tickets will be made available for students in the coming weeks at ohiostatebuckeyes.com.
Law enforcement personnel are seen near a building after an active shooter turned hostage situation at the Veterans Home of California on 9 March 2018 in Yountville, California. AFPA gunman and three women thought to be his hostages were found dead Friday at a California veterans home after an hours-long standoff with police.The assailant struck at 10:20am (1820 GMT) at the Veterans Home of California-Yountville in the Napa Valley, the largest veterans’ home in the United States with around 1,000 former servicemen and women.“Shortly before 6:00pm this evening law enforcement personnel made entry into the room where we felt the hostages were being held by the suspect and unfortunately made the discovery of three deceased females and one deceased male suspect,” Captain Chris Childs of the California Highway Patrol told a news conference.“This is a tragic piece of news, one we were really hoping we wouldn’t have to come before the public to give.”The Napa County Sheriff’s Office had earlier issued an advisory on social media telling people to avoid the area following reports of gunfire, as the California Highway Patrol dispatched officers, air support and a SWAT team to the site.Childs said a sheriff’s deputy who was first on the scene exchanged fire with the suspect, adding that “we credit him with saving the lives of others in the area by eliminating the ability for the suspect to go out and find further victims.”The three victims were described by local media as employees of The Pathway Home, an on-site counselling service for veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).It was not immediately clear whether they had been targeted or were chosen at random.The San Francisco Chronicle said the gunman-apparently a 36-year-old war veteran wearing “a stash of bullets” around his neck and waist-had been on the PTSD treatment program, adding that his weapon was a rifle.Gunman was calmIt quoted state senator Bill Dodd identifying the program’s executive director, Christine Loeber, as being one of the dead, although the victims’ names have not been officially released.Police did not say how they died, although local media, citing unnamed sources, reported that the assailant shot the three women before turning the gun on himself.Dodd, whose district includes the centre, said the gunman had been asked to leave several days earlier, according to the Chronicle.“It’s a residential program so guys live in the building, staff work in the building,” Larry Kamer, whose wife Devereaux Smith was working at the centre, told the local ABC7 News channel.Smith, a development director for The Pathway Home, was one of four women released by the gunman, said Kamer.“There was a going away party for a couple of the staff who were leaving today. They were having cake and toasting and all that and then he apparently just walked in with this rifle.”Kamer said the gunman was calm and talked to everyone present.The discovery came after several fruitless hours of trying to contact the man by the sheriff’s department, City of Napa Police and the FBI.California Department of Veterans Affairs secretary Vito Imbasciani said in a statement the agency was “devastated” by the deaths.“Our hearts are heavy for the entire Yountville Veterans Home community and the families and friends who are grieving for those who died,” he added.“Nothing matters more than caring for our veterans and employees during this difficult time. We appreciate the tremendous law enforcement response today and unfailing support of this community.”
A woman carrying her son arrives to check her name on the draft list of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) at an NRC center in Chandamari village in Goalpara district in the northeastern state of Assam, India, 2 January, 2018. Photo: ReutersIndia said on Monday it had excluded more than 4 million people from a draft list of citizens in the border state of Assam who could not produce valid documents, a move that has sparked fears about the future of thousands in the region.Security has been tightened across the state, which borders Bangladesh, as thousands of Bengali-speaking Muslims worry about being sent to detention centres or deported, a Reuters witness said.The tea-rich state of Assam has long been the centre of social and communal tensions with locals campaigning against illegal immigrants, a fight that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist-led government has championed.In 1983, scores of people were chased down and killed by machete-armed mobs intent on hounding out Muslim immigrants.The government said the draft was not meant to drive people out and those struck out of the list would have a chance to re-apply.”Based on this draft, there is no question of anyone being taken to detention centres or foreigners’ tribunal,” Sailesh, India’s census commissioner who uses only one name, told rerporters in Guwahati, the state’s main city.Hundreds of thousands of people fled to India from Bangladesh during Bangladesh’s war of independence from Pakistan in the early 1970s. Most of them settled in Assam, which has a near-270 km (165-mile) border with Bangladesh.More than 30 million people had applied and 4,007,707 had been excluded from the list, Sailesh said.To be recognised as Indian citizens, all residents of Assam had to produce documents proving that they or their families lived in the country before March 24, 1971.Sailesh did not provide a breakup of people who had failed to make to the draft list.Critics see the citizenship test as another measure supported by Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) aimed at minority Muslims. The BJP denies any bias but says it opposes a policy of appeasement of any community.Authorities in the state have previously said the citizenship test was crucial to protect ethnic Assamese, many of whom have demanded removal of outsiders they accuse of taking jobs and cornering resources in the state of 33 million.The first draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC), released on Dec. 31, confirmed the citizenship of 19 million people, leading to jubilation for some and heartbreak among others.The NRC, however, told the Supreme Court this month that 150,000 people from the first list, a third of them married women, would be dropped from the next one, mainly because they provided false information or gave inadmissible documents.”If the government has decided to brand us foreigners what can we do?” said Abdul Suban, 60, a Bengali-speaking Muslim, earlier.”The NRC is trying to finish us off. Our people have died here, but we will not leave this place.”
Share To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: 00:00 /03:35 X Ted S. Warren/APCounter-protesters respond to the “anti-sharia” rally in Seattle on Saturday.Protesters who gathered on Saturday to denounce Islamic law were met across the country with equally sized or larger counter-protests.Organizers called the “March Against Sharia” rallies to protest what they say is the threat to U.S. society posed by the set of traditional Muslim practices, which they say includes oppression of women, honor killings, homophobic violence, female genital mutilation and other abuses.But reports and pictures show large counter-protests around the country, with activists accusing the “anti-sharia” marchers of racism and Islamophobia.Sharia “is a legal or philosophical code derived from Islamic scripture and meant to guide the behavior of observant Muslims,” as NPR’s Tom Gjelten noted. Religious experts say it’s similar to parts of Christian and Jewish customs.The rallies were held in about two dozen cities and about 20 states. They were organized by the conservative group ACT for America, which the Southern Poverty Law Center calls the “largest grassroots anti-Muslim group in America, claiming 280,000 members and over 1,000 chapters.” The organization describes itself as “the NRA of national security.”“I feel like we need to make a stand now, before [sharia] makes more inroads,” protester Shannon Boulogne told WABE reporter Adhiti Bandlamudi. “I’ve always been, you know, for women’s rights.”Bandlamudi reports that Boulogne was among a small group of demonstrators who gathered in Atlanta’s Piedmont Park. The Los Angeles Times reports they were met by a “small gaggle of counter-protesters,” who “held up placards and shouted, ‘No Hate! No Fear! Muslims Are Welcome Here.’ “A few miles away, other Atlantans held a counter-protest and food drive. Asma Elhuni, of the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, criticized the “anti-sharia” protesters. “If they’re against sharia, are you against feeding the poor? Are you against being friendly, showing love? Because essentially that is Sharia,” she told Bandlamudi.In Syracuse, N.Y., “March Against Sharia” organizer Lisa Joseph told North Country Public Radio’s Brian Mann that she put the rally together because she and others are “against female genital mutilation, honor killings, throwing gays off of buildings, stoning people to death.”Counter-protesters in Syracuse responded by shouting “Shame! Shame! Shame!” and described the opposing demonstration as anti-Muslim bigotry, Mann reports.On the other side of the country, several dozen “anti-sharia” protesters gathered at Seattle’s City Hall, according to The Associated Press. But the AP reports that “[h]undreds of counter-protesters marched through downtown Seattle behind a large sign saying ‘Seattle stands with our Muslim neighbors.’ “#HappeningNow: About 100 chant “No hate now!” to counter-protest a small group gathered for a “March Against Sharia” in downtown Chicago. pic.twitter.com/PA6llTkAbs— The Chicago Reporter (@ChicagoReporter) June 10, 2017In Chicago, “about 30 people demonstrated against Islamic law and in favor of President Trump,” but twice as many counter-protesters shouted back, the wire service reports.“Each side boasted about 150-to-175 people” in a protest and counter-protest in Denver, according to The Denver Post, and law enforcement arrested four people.A participant (who refused to give his name) in the “Denver March Against Sharia” speaks to counter-demonstrators on Saturday in Denver.In Harrisburg, Penn., about 60 “anti-sharia” protesters were separated from the same number of counter-protesters. “This is a march against sharia, not Muslims,” Steven R. Moore, of Washington County, Pa., told The Washington Post. “We are not affiliated with any extremist groups. … Sharia is a barbaric system that the Islamic State is trying to impose in our country.”Several counter-protesters were “anti-fascist” or “antifa” activists, who “dressed in black masks and hoods and chant[ed] ‘No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA,’ ” Reuters reports, a slogan modified from a 1980s punk song.Similar protests and counter-protests also happened in St. Paul, Minn., where authorities arrested several people “when scuffles broke out,” the AP reports, and New York City, where counter-protesters banged pots and pans in an effort to drown out “anti-sharia” demonstrators.Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty ImagesNYPD officers try to separate counter-protesters and activists rallying for the “March Against Sharia” on Saturday in New York City.Despite the concern, sharia has no chance of being imposed in the U.S. in the foreseeable future.“It’s like the Ten Commandments for Muslims. It’s nothing to be enforced upon anyone. It’s a moral code that I follow for myself as an individual,” Muslim youth leader Mansoor Shams explained to NPR earlier this year.No area of the U.S. has legally implemented sharia, despite false reports on social media that Dearborn, Mich., enacted it.According to the Pew Research Center, the U.S. has a population that is only 0.9 percent Muslim; and Liyakat Takim, a professor of Islamic studies at McMaster University, told the AP that the vast majority of U.S. Muslims oppose implementing sharia in the U.S.Then there’s the Constitution, which states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Listen
Categories: News Tags: #SB 05Feb Rep. Muxlow announces February office hours State Rep. Paul Muxlow of Brown City announced House District 83 office hours for the month of February for residents of Sanilac County, Burtchville Township, Fort Gratiot Township and the city of Port Huron.Muxlow is hosting two meet-and-greet sessions next week: Feb. 9 in Port Huron and Feb. 13 in Port Sanilac.On Monday, Feb. 9, the lawmaker will be at the Blue Water Chamber of Commerce, 512 McMorran Blvd. in Port Huron, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.On Friday, Feb. 13, he will be at Bark Shanty Community Center, 135 Church St. in Port Sanilac, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.“I enjoy meeting with citizens and listening to their suggestions and concerns,” Muxlow said. “It is very important to keep in constant communication with residents so that I can properly represent them in the House.”No appointment is necessary. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Muxlow at (517) 373-0835 or via email at PaulMuxlow@house.mi.gov.#####About Rep. Muxlow:State Rep. Paul Muxlow is a second-term lawmaker representing the 83rd House District. The 83rd District includes Burtchville Township, Fort Gratiot Township, Port Huron city and Sanilac County. Muxlow can be reached at (517) 373-0835, via email at PaulMuxlow@house.mi.gov or on his website at www.reppaulmuxlow.com. For additional updates follow House Republicans on Facebook and Twitter.
Duco SickingheDutch telco KPN has named former Telenet CEO Duco Sickinghe as its new chairman.Sickinghe will succeed Jos Streppel on April 15 at the company’s annual general meeting of shareholders, following the termination of the latter’s third and final term in the role.Sickinghe has been a member of KPN’s supervisory board since April last year.He resigned as CEO of Telenet two years ago after Liberty Global moved to take full control of the company but encountered resistance from a number of investors.KPN has also appointed Jolande Sap, currently chair of mental healthcare institution Arkin and a former politician and leader of the GroenLinks party, to its supervisory board, replacing Tini Hooymans.
European culture and lifestyle channel, Eurochannel, is now available in the United Arab Emirates through local operator du.Eurochannel is available on du’s English Basic and French Basic packages on channel number 1408.“Eurochannel continues its vast expansion across international borders thanks to the launch of our channel in the Middle East,” said Eurochannel CEO, Gustavo Vainstein.With the launch, Eurochannel claims that its station is now available in 22 million households in 10 languages, offering Eropean movies and TV series.Separately, du announced today that it has entered into long-term partnership with Ericsson, which will manage and operate du’s IT infrastructure.
Despite strong growth in on-demand revenues, European movies are struggling to achieve VOD distribution, according to a new report by the European Audiovisual Observatory. The report noted that VOD aggregators are playing an increasingly prominent role in determining the make-up of on-demand catalogues.Total pay on-demand revenues in the EU grew by over half between 2014 and 2015, while subscription VOD revenues grew by over 95%, according to the VOD Distribution and the Role of Aggregators report.While subscription VOD grew significantly, electronic sell-through lagged behind, according to the report. EST saw 28% growth between 2014-15, while VOD rental grew by a more modest 12%.Despite the growth in on-demand revenues, these still accounted for only 3% of all audiovisual industry revenues at the end of the report period. According to the study, advertising was the biggest contributor to revenue in 2015, followed by pay TV revenues and public funding, with box office and physical video sales following some way behind – but still ahead of VOD.European movies are still struggling to make it into on-demand catalogues. According to the European Audiovisual Observatory, only 47% of European films make it to TVOD catalogues, versus 87% of US films.EU films represent 43% of all films in TVOD catalogues when counted on a unique basis – once per title – versus 41% for US films. However, when counting each occurrence of a film in all catalogues, the results are reversed, with EU films only making up 27% of the films, versus 59% for US productions, indicating that EU films tend to circulate less than US productions.The report also found that VOD aggregators are playing an increasingly prominent role in the distribution chain. However, it noted that aggregators face a number of challenges, requiring scale to maximise revenues in a generally low-margin business where rights-holders are keen to maximise their own share of the available take.
Justin’s note: Beyond Meat (BYND) is soaring.The plant-based meat producer is up around 500% since the company went public in May. The company is now worth over $9 billion, and is trading at more than 80 times its trailing 12-month sales.That’s an absurd valuation. But many believe the stock could keep running. That’s because the company is supposed to radically change how people eat.Personally, I think BYND’s a bubble that will pop any day now. But I was interested in the big trend here of plant-based meat. So, I got Doug Casey on the phone to see what he thinks about BYND and the future of food…Justin: Doug, there’s a lot of hype around Beyond Meat right now, and for good reason.Its stock is up around 500% since the company went public in May. Not only that, Whole Foods’ CEO recently described Beyond Meat as the future of food, saying, “You have a business here that is real and that is in the early innings.”Do you buy that? Is plant-based meat really the future?Doug: This trend – and I think it is a trend – has been predicted for some time. When I was in high school, Mr. Blue by Myles Connolly was a popular book for a while. I just looked it up – it was written in 1928. It’s been a long time since I read it, but if my memory serves, among other things it posited that people and machines would both run on the same fuel, a petroleum derivative, in a dystopian future. It’s not an unreasonable prediction. Because although there are 92 naturally occurring elements most food consists of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen. These elements basically compose all carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Plus traces of others like iron, copper, and sulfur.Fabricating “food,” or at least something that can fuel the body’s cells, is just practical chemistry. As technology improves it will be possible to create all sorts of foods that look and taste like the real thing. Perhaps better. Science fiction has always been the best predictor of the future, and I have no doubt that “replicators,” like those on Star Trek, will create food. 3-D printing is a major step in that direction.Right now it’s still at the stage of using plants to transform raw materials into something that tastes like meat. The next question is not just whether we can cut out animals, which transform plants. But cut out the plants, which transform raw chemical compounds. It’s only logical that this trend will accelerate. The question is whether the foods are also economic and tasty. Let’s hope it goes in that direction, rather than towards Soylent Green – which is rather unaesthetic. The creation of foods out of various stages of raw material has lots of implications on political and sociological – not to mention philosophical – levels. But we’re mainly interested on how to turn a buck here…As far as making money is concerned, I don’t like to invest in science projects. There’s just too much research and development (R&D), experimentation, and uncertainty – it might even be riskier than mining exploration, which is saying something. In addition, projects like this tend to be cultural problems. And it takes generations to change cultures. So, I wouldn’t touch Beyond Meat’s stock with a cattle prod at the moment.Justin: Why do you think its stock is up so much then?Doug: Well, since I haven’t personally tried any of their products, I can’t comment on their taste or cost. When I do, perhaps I’ll change my opinion. I have no doubt that as the tech improves – which it will – both will get better. But there’s plenty of time to get involved – when other companies are out there, and there’s not a speculative bubble.I think the stock’s gone up because interest rates are near record lows and the Federal Reserve is printing money. All that money has got to go somewhere. It’s just part of the great financial bubble. And it’s generally a bad idea to chase after every fashionable idea. Especially late in a bubble.As far as artificial meat itself is concerned, the Chinese have made many great meat substitutes from mushrooms, soy, and wheat for many decades. When I used to live in Hong Kong, one of my favorite restaurants specialized in Buddhist vegetarian dishes. The menu had lots of pork and beef taste-alikes that were extremely appetizing. I certainly didn’t feel the need for real meat when I ate there. But those products never really made it in the U.S.But I don’t doubt “faux flesh” is a growing trend.Justin: What about the green movement? I imagine eco-conscious millennials have played a huge role in bidding up Beyond Meat’s stock.Doug: This is absolutely part of the green movement. A lot of it is based on people being made to feel guilty for even existing, not to mention eating animals.I understand the ethical argument. I don’t like killing other creatures. I feel somewhat sheepish going to a store and buying meat products that someone else has killed, despite the fact it’s just a question of specialization and division of labor. It’s certainly more authentic to eat what you’ve actually hunted and killed yourself. But that’s impractical in today’s world.This is mostly a matter of economics. Most food is based on corn, soybeans, wheat, and rice. All these commodity groups are grown in gigantic monocultures that cover hundreds of thousands of square miles. Any large artificial monoculture is an accident waiting to happen.The day of the self-sustaining family farm, like the one Joel Salatin runs and writes about, is done. At least for 98% of humanity. I’m not a dedicated farmer like Joel. But I can tell you that at current prices it’s somewhere between hard and impossible to make money growing food at today’s prices.My main objection to faux foods is personal, and aesthetic. I don’t like the idea of eating manufactured or industrial foods. But perhaps that’s just because I have enough money to allow me to eat whatever I want. Those big four grains are for feeding the masses. Humans didn’t eat that kind of food for the first 99% of our existence.That sounds elitist, I know. Which is a bit of a contradiction, because it’s well-known I generally despise today’s “elite.” But, on the other hand, every human who’s not a useless mouth should strive to become elite. It’s just a question of how we define that word. And what you do to become elite. Just being no more than a carbon-based life form that has to be fed doesn’t cut it.If you’re at a certain economic level – as I presume anyone reading this is – you’re not directly affected by whether the corn crop fails, or wheat goes back to $10 a bushel. That’s largely a problem for Third World countries with socialist governments, places where they can’t produce anything but more poor people. But, in that context I’ve got to point out that all the foods, not just wheat, corn, and soybeans, but also cattle, sugar, coffee and orange juice, are at just about historic lows. So, now is the time to get into these things from a speculative point of view.It’s very dangerous to grow anything in a gigantic monoculture. There are viruses, bacteria, insects, and other pests that can wipe out these crops wholesale. The Chinese are dealing with that now with their hog crop; an African swine fever breakout has wiped out 20% to 30% of the hogs in China. Closer to home, flooding in the Midwest has devastated this year’s corn, wheat, and soybean harvests. At the same time that most of the world’s crops have been engineered to be grown using the pesticide glyphosate (RoundUp), there are huge lawsuits being won that could ban its use. It’s accused – quite possibly correctly – as being a dangerous carcinogen. “Roundup Ready” crops don’t do well, however, without RoundUp.I say that with the understanding that productivity of all foods has been going up for many years. Farmers produce two to three times per acre more than they did just fifty years ago. I’m sure, for many reasons not germane to this short discussion, that trend is going to continue. Always remember that the longest bear market in history is commodities. In real terms they’ve been collapsing in price for roughly 10,000 years – punctuated by explosive rallies, usually caused by either natural disasters like flood or drought, or anthropogenic ones, like war and collectivism.My guess is that we’re at the bottom for commodity prices here. Unless we have a credit collapse, there will be fortunes made in the next couple of years. People who feel guilty about profiting from higher food prices simply have no understanding of basic economics. A proper speculator is a humanitarian in disguise. Why? By buying things when there’s a surplus, and prices are cheap, he’s in a position to make them available to the less prudent when there’s a shortage.Now’s an excellent time to speculate on these commodity type foods at these prices.Justin: Aside from plant-based meat, what other developments in the food industry should we expect? I recently read that insect-based foods might be needed to deal with overpopulation. What do you think?Doug: First of all, it’s too bad that most meat today is produced in an industrial manner. The conditions under which cattle, hogs, and chickens are produced are absolutely disgusting. The animals are full of steroids and antibiotics. And they’re often fed what amounts to cardboard. The entire process is very unaesthetic. I avoid industrial meat, milk, and eggs whenever possible. There’s a lot of truth to the saying “you are what you eat”, and nobody needs more steroids and antibiotics.But I’m not worried about the growing population. The population all over the world is actually dropping, particularly in North America, Europe, and Japan. And that’s not likely to change. It’s actually likely to accelerate. It’s even happening in China, the Middle East, and South America.The only place where population is growing is in Africa. Africans can’t feed themselves as it stands. They certainly won’t be able to if their population triples by the end of this century. Unless the continent completely reforms its political and economic systems, it’s in trouble. The whole continent is a welfare case, sucking capital out of the rest of the world.Contrary to most projections, however, I believe the population of Africa could collapse at some point – not for the reasons populations are declining in the developed world, but because they don’t produce anything. Africa doesn’t have the infrastructure, the capital base, or the political/economic environment to change that in the near term. The Central African Republic is much closer to reality than the country of Wakanda portrayed in the movie Black Panther. Anyway, they’re not competing with us for expensive foods like meat and fish. They’re competitors for subsistence foods.As for grubs and insects I’ve tried many of them when I was living in Thailand and Hong Kong. They can be very tasty. But, even there, they’re a specialty item. When they’re bred in meaningful quantities, however, they’ll be ground into mulch. Then they won’t be a delicacy for rich people, but subsistence protein for poor people. In any event, not a consideration for many years to come.Here’s the bottom line. It’s time to get long commodities.Justin: Great stuff. Thanks, Doug.Doug: You’re welcome.Justin’s note: As Doug said, now is a great time to bet on commodities.Our in-house commodities expert Dave Forest agrees. He says we’re entering the next “supercycle”… and smart investors stand to make a fortune.And just like Doug and I talked about today, he sees agriculture stocks specifically as one of the top ways to take advantage.The best part is, Dave just found the perfect way to profit. He just wrote about it in the latest issue of International Speculator, which subscribers can access here.If you’re not a subscriber, you can learn more, including another massive opportunity on Dave’s radar, by clicking here.
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Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 2 2018Keep 2D, See 3D! MonoStereo, a smart 3D endoscope visualization system, integrates the benefits of 2D and 3D function, providing an advanced 3D endoscope image for better endoscopic surgery.This surgical image breakthrough was selected by RESI (Redefining Early Stage Investment) New York 2018 Innovation Challenge Companies as one of the finalists who stands out from hundreds of competitors globally.”It is the first 3D image system which provides depth perception and spatial view of anatomy; however, the 2D functions, like zooming and rotating, are reserved at the same time,” said Dr. Kai-Che Liu, the MeidcalTek CEO. “It is both Mono and Stereo. You may keep 2D, see 3D.” Dr. Liu explained the brand name with confidence.Related StoriesBariatric surgery should be offered to all patients who would benefitGender biases are extremely common among health care professionalsFight for Sight poll: Brits put their eyesight at risk through unsafe contact lens habitsThe MedicalTek, a Taiwanese start-up, has a close network with IRCAD, a world class minimally invasive surgery training center. After years of extensive study from dozens of international endoscopic experts and 7000 surgeons from 60 countries in Taiwan and France, a software based MonoStereo 3D endoscope visualization system was launched.Since 2017, this advanced 3D image technology has earned positive feedback and high satisfaction among surgeons at SAGES (Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons) annual meetings. Either 3D image display, comfortable 3D vision, or detail perception on tissues and organs were highly acknowledged by a pilot clinic trail.”MonoStereo® 3D seems to be helpful for the therapeutic endoscopic procedures.” Said by Dr Gabriel Rahmi, Medical Doctor specialized in Endoscopy at the Georges Pompidou European Hospital. Over 120 minimally invasive surgeries with MonoStereo® have been performed by hundreds of surgeons in ENT, Urology, GI, GS, GYNE, and VATs.Diagnostic and interventional endoscopy is a fast-growing mini-invasive alternative to classical surgical techniques. The irresistible trend comes along with a huge capital investment, complex assets management, and cost of obsolescence….. The plug-in MonoStereo® 3D endoscope visualization system is a smart investment. It allows hospitals/clinics to have a 3D visualization surgery with a minimized equipment transition cost. Due to the superb compatibility, MonoStereo® functions well with hundreds of rigid, flexible and others endoscopes. There is no need to buy the new ones, nor to throw pre-existing endoscope, camera, and monitor away. It is a seamless connection, without any workflow change during the surgery. Source:https://www.medicaltek.biz/
Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 27 2018Despite significant advances in cancer research, the disease continues to exact a devastating toll. Because cancer is a disease of the body’s own cells, which mutate and develop under evolutionary pressure, conventional treatments like chemotherapy and radiation often leave behind a residue of resistant cells that go on to expand and wreak havoc.The best weapon against this implacable foe would be prevention, though to date, this has been an elusive goal.In a new study, Stephen Albert Johnston and his colleagues describe a method for pinpointing tumor-specific factors in blood that can elicit a protective immune response in the body and may one day be harnessed to produce an effective vaccine against the disease.The new study outlines a means for rapidly identifying peptides produced by tumor-associated mutations, then screening these peptides to find those exhibiting a strong immune response.A new visionThe work is part of a sea change in the field of oncology, where increasingly, the body’s immune system is induced to attack the disease. Immunotherapies have already shown startling effectiveness against certain previously intractable cancers and a pair of scientists were awarded this year’s Nobel Prize for their research into immune mechanisms known as checkpoint inhibitors.The technique described in the new study relies on libraries of peptides printed on slides known as peptide arrays. When such arrays are exposed to cancer-linked antigens in samples of patient blood, specific peptides bind with antibodies, suggesting they are recognized by the immune system and may be used in a vaccine against that cancer.Results of the study indicate that tumor-associated peptide mutations not only bind with immune antibodies, but can effectively provide cancer protection, (at least in animal models of the disease). The peptides generating a strong immune response could be incorporated into a vaccine or alternatively, used in conjunction with other forms of immunotherapy to treat existing cancers.Johnston and his colleagues used peptide arrays to screen for tumor-linked peptides in blood samples from dogs, examining responses to 9 different forms of cancer. The antigens showing the greatest immune response in the array were then evaluated for their protective effect against two forms of cancer, in a mouse model.The study confirmed that some of the peptides exhibiting a strong antibody response on the peptide arrays offered protection from cancer in mice, while non-immunogenic peptides did not.”Our system has the advantages of not requiring tumor tissue to DNA sequence and not having to guess whether a mutation elicits an immune response,” Johnston says.Johnston directs the Biodesign Institute Center for Innovations in Medicine. The new study appears in the journal Scientific Reports.Hidden in plain sightWhen viruses, bacteria or other pathogens attack the body, they often carry particular molecular signatures not present in normal cells. The immune system can recognize these foreign signatures, mounting a defense against the disease-causing invader.Cancer is different. Because cancer is a disease involving the body’s own native cells, most telltale signs of an alien presence, capable of triggering the immune system, are lacking.Fortunately, the body is not entirely defenseless against cancer. Certain signposts of illness produced by cancerous tumors can indeed provoke an immune response. Particular mutated peptides can act to alert the immune system, once they have been expressed, processed and presented on the cell surface, allowing the immune system warriors–the T cells–to recognize and attack the cancer.Identifying and harnessing these factors–known as neoantigens– is the focus of the new study.But while cancer produces a variety of mutations, whose traces may be registered by the immune system, Johnston notes that not all mutations are created equal. A specific form–known as frameshift mutations–have been shown to be more effective stimulators of immune response. They have been difficult to isolate and identify, until now.Related StoriesTrends in colonoscopy rates not aligned with increase in early onset colorectal cancerSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyScripps CHAVD wins $129 million NIH grant to advance new HIV vaccine approachIf tumor-specific frameshift mutations can be recognized and applied in cancer therapy, the results are potentially dramatic, because T cells specific to cancer neoantigens can aggressively attack malignant cells without harming normal tissue.Shifting frames of referenceMost efforts toward a cancer vaccine have focused on so-called point mutations. Such mutations occur when a single DNA nucleotide letter is replaced with a different nucleotide. For example, an original sequence of ACCTACA could mutate to form a sequence reading ACCTATA.Point mutations therefore leave the sequence length unchanged, altering only the content of the DNA and resulting RNA transcripts. By contrast, frameshift mutations occur when sequence letters are inserted or deleted. (INDELS is the term for these insertion-deletion mutations.)Currently, use of point mutations for experimental cancer vaccines have been largely based on algorithms that make predictions about which neoantigens will yield an effective immune response, which can only be tested for effectiveness once the vaccine has been manufactured. The process, which is estimated to take 1-3 months, is cumbersome, very expensive and inaccurate. Use of frameshift peptide arrays could provide immediate information on peptide vaccine candidates and assess their immune reactivity before the formulation of vaccines.In addition to indels, frameshift mutations can occur through a process known as exon mis-splicing. Exon splicing occurs prior to translation from RNA to protein. Here, nucleotide sequences known as introns, which do not code for proteins, are cut from sequences and ends of the remaining coding regions, known as exons, are fused. This process can mis-splice–either omitting part of the exon or including part of the unwanted intron sequence. Like indel mutations, exon mis-splicing is a rich source of immunogenic mutations, explored in the current research.The searchThe new study describes a means of ferreting out tumor-specific peptides resulting from frame shift mutations by preparing peptide arrays containing libraries of frameshift peptides to probe for cancer-specific antibodies to them in dogs, then testing the capacity of the resulting antigens to protect against cancer in a mouse model.Dogs are subject to a variety of cancers that also plague humans, making them attractive subjects for such a study. Johnston plans to explore both therapeutic and prophylactic vaccines in dogs in parallel to human trials.As the authors note, there are a finite number of possible peptides displaying frameshift mutations, so it is possible to construct arrays capable of interrogating the entire sequence space of these mutations, eventually establishing the most immunogenic candidates. A group of 10-20 such frameshift peptides could be used for an anti-cancer vaccine.In the present study, 830 peptides from 377 predicted frameshift antigens were synthesized and affixed to array slides. 116 samples of blood serum from 26 dog breeds, representing 9 types of dog cancer (carcinoma, fibrosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, lymphoma, mast cell tumor, osteosarcoma, histiocytic sarcoma, synovial cell sarcoma and malignant histiocytosis) were screened on the dog frameshift peptide array. 52 age-matched, blood samples from healthy dogs were used as control. (Each frameshift antigen was represented with 1-4, frameshift peptides, 17 nucleotides in length on the array.)Subsequent testing of the frameshift peptides demonstrated that reactive peptides provided T cell protection from melanoma and breast cancer in mice, whereas non-reactive peptides offered no such protection. Intriguingly, this tumor protection directly correlated to the degree of antibody response to frameshift peptides seen in the array results.The research paves the way for the development of potent new weapons against cancer, leveraging the body’s own immune defenses to stop this leading killer in its tracks.Source: https://biodesign.asu.edu/news/mutations-boost-immunity-toward-cancer-vaccine