– says mismanagement, incompetence remains rifeA recent move by Government to revise the economic growth rate for 2018 from 3.8 percent to 3.4 percent is another indication that it is incapable of managing the economy, creating and attracting investments, and promoting sustainable development for future generations to come.This is according to former Presidential Advisor Ramon Gaskin, who told Guyana Times on Sunday that the David Granger-led Administration remains clueless on how to run the Guyanese economy.With Government being more than three years in office, Gaskin said, “If they still can’t get it right, they will never get it right.”At the recent 48th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), held in Grenada, Finance Minister Winston Jordan announced that the previous 3.8 per cent growth projection he had announced at the last budget reading would be revised downwards.Notwithstanding further decline in the sugar industry, Minister Jordan has said theEconomist and former Presidential Advisor, Ramon Gaskinoutlook for 2018 is positive, as real growth is projected to be 3.4 per cent, slightly below the budgeted 3.8 per cent, with increased output in rice, construction, manufacturing and services sectors.Guyana’s last best growth rate was 5.2 per cent, recorded in 2013. World Bank records show Guyana’s growth rates as follows: in 2014, it was 3.8 per cent; in 2015, it was 3.2 per cent; and in 2016, it was 3.3 per cent. For 2017, initial projections of 3.8 per cent were revised to 3.1 per cent. This figure then went to 2.9 per cent before the final figure of 2.1 per cent was determined.Gaskin said while he feels there is too much emphasis on growth rate as a general rule for Guyana, it is an important indicator for financial institutions like the World Bank, among others. Focus is most times placed on growth rate, inflation rate, exchange rate and debt to GDP.“I don’t focus too much on that. I focus on the unemployment rate and the rate of job creation…And this is something that this Government shouldn’t feel proud about. As a matter of fact, the growth rate is not properly captured by the statisticians in this country for many reasons,” he explained.The economist said production in Guyana is declining rapidly, and unless this is addressed, there is a strong likelihood that the growth rate would continue to decline. While the downsizing of the sugar industry has a major role to play, Gaskin said, gold smuggling is also a contributing factor among other factors.“Sugar is down to 130,000 tonnes. We are in very big problem with sugar. There is no production there. That is why you’re not even getting molasses from Enmore. So we have a lot of problems there, because of the mismanagement of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) and the privatisation plans.”BauxiteBut to compound the issue, Gaskin noted, bauxite production declined in 2017Finance Minister Winston Jordansomewhere close to 1,417,557 tonnes as a result of inclement weather and mechanical problems. And while Government had promised that the industry was likely to see improvements in its performance in 2018 due to an increase in world demand for aluminum and the construction of a new mine, other factors may hinder that.Prices of aluminum, a by-product of bauxite, have fallen on the international market by more than 12 percent since April, when the United States (US) Government imposed sanctions against Russian giant Rusal Co., the second-largest supplier of the metal after China, which has operations here. Rusal was one of dozens of entities hit with sanctions designed to punish Russia for interference in the 2016 US presidential election.On that note, the economist said the expansion of bauxite production in Guyana does not seem to be promising. This is especially since international financial agencies have reported that Rusal’s exports and finances could take another hit if Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska, owner of Rusal, is unable to persuade the US to lift sanctions by late August, according to several industry sources.MismanagementGaskin told Guyana Times that while the rice sector’s production is balanced, the price for the commodity is not where it used to be. Outside of rice, bauxite, gold and sugar collectively are not doing well, and when it comes to forestry, there is some work that needs to be done to create value added.“Because of the low production and the low exports, we have diminishing revenue from exports and increasing payment for imports for fuel. So, we have a bigger deficit on the trade account, and the reserves have dropped now below US$500 million for the first time in a long time. So we have big problems with the reserves, the trade deficit, and the massive spending on projects,” he stated.Gaskin said that, coupled with the poor performance of the local economy, “it is clear to all Guyanese that mismanagement, incompetence and corruption remain high under this Government. They are looking to give their party supporters, friends and relatives all the Government-related jobs. And do you know that the monthly bill for public servants is one of the highest in this country?”The economist said slow economic growth will continue until the country starts to receive revenues from oil. (Samuel Sukhnandan)
1 Mamadou Sakho in action for Liverpool Jurgen Klopp has offered Mamadou Sakho some reassurances over his Liverpool future after the defender was sent home from the tour of the United States.The centre-back was ordered to return to Melwood to continue his rehabilitation from an Achilles injury after being late on three separate occasions, which caused the Reds boss to question his attitude.However, Klopp said the France international’s punishment would not be extended beyond his exile from the pre-season trip and there was no question of him being sold.“Come on, it’s not (like that). Three times late, do you think I should (sell him)?” he said when asked what the future held for the 26-year-old.“No, it’s an issue – it’s not the biggest thing, it’s not the smallest thing – it’s how football works.“We have a few rules; a few from me, a few from the team.“When you want a great team then you have to do some things – if you don’t do it then I have to react.“I reacted – but nothing else. He missed three things he should not have missed, that is all, and that is why I sent him home.”Klopp added on Sky Sports: “Mama is not a bad guy, he’s a good person.“He’s not happy about the situation but it was my decision in this moment.“You can believe I didn’t want to do things like this, I like to be a nice guy until I can’t be a nice guy any more.“So he’s at home, we are here; we train here, he trains there. When we come to Liverpool again, then we’ll have a talk and we’ll see.”
Five Donegal organisations have been announced as county winners in the National Lottery Good Causes Awards 2019.The Earagail Arts Festival, Liquid Therapy in Bundoran, Anam Cara Donegal, Donegal G.A.P Heritage and History Group, Cairde Le Cheile have been selected as the five winners of the national award from the county.The awards were created to honour and showcase the inspiring work being carried out by thousands of projects, clubs and individuals in their local communities across Ireland thanks to National Lottery Good Causes funding. Nearly 30 cents of every euro spent on National Lottery games goes back to Good Causes all over the country.Announcing the winners of the county phase of the awards today, National Lottery CEO, Dermot Griffin, said: “We were bowled over by the number and calibre of entries we received for these awards and it is proof that organisations supported by National Lottery funding are having a huge impact in their local communities. Recognising and celebrating this impact is what the National Lottery Good Causes Awards is all about.”The awards, which culminates in a televised Gala Awards Dinner in Dublin on Saturday, 2nd November, has six main categories: Sport, Health & Wellbeing, Heritage, Arts & Culture, Community and Youth. A seventh category, Irish Language, will have a special award to be announced on the night at the Awards final, in recognition of outstanding work done in the promotion of the Irish Language.Speaking on selecting the winners, Broadcaster, publisher and businesswoman, Norah Casey, who is Chair of the competition’s judging panel, said: “It is a privilege to be involved in these awards and to learn first-hand of the impact of Good Causes in every parish, village and town in Ireland. They truly are ordinary people doing extraordinary things. “With more than 480 entries, selecting the county winners has been a very tough job. I congratulate all of those who have come through the County phase of the competition and look forward to the Regional Finals later this month.”These winners will now go forward to the six Regional finals, competing for a place in the National Finals in Dublin on Saturday 2nd November.Each category winner will receive €10,000 and the overall Good Cause of the Year will receive an additional €25,000.The full list of County Winners can be found at www.lottery.ie/goodcausesawards.The Donegal winners are: Sport – Liquid Therapy: Liquid Therapy is a not for profit foundation that provides ocean, surf, and water therapy for young people with physical, emotional, behavioural or intellectual needs. Good Causes funding allowed it to provide surfboards and bodysuits for a growing number of members.Health & Wellbeing – Anam Cara: Anam Cara is an organisation founded in 2008 by bereaved parents to ensure all bereaved families have access to information and support. The Donegal branch provides a wide range of bereavement support services, peer support and understanding to parents who have experienced the death of a childHeritage – Donegal GAP Heritage & History Group: Donegal GAP History and Heritage Group are non-profit voluntary community group primarily based in the Glenties, Ardara and Portnoo (GAP) areas of South West, Donegal. They aim to research, develop, protect and promote the built heritage of GAP and the surrounding areasArts & Culture – Earagail Arts Festival: The Earagail Arts Festival is an annual festival which takes place in County Donegal since 1988. The Festival includes parades, street performances and numerous plays, musical concerts and comedy acts in towns and villages across County Donegal.Community – Cairde Le Cheile: The Cairde le Cheile mantra is ‘Friends Together Supporting People with Disability’. Their aim is to provide sporting, social and employment opportunities for people with disability, as well as young people and senior citizens in County Donegal.Youth – Involve: Involve is a youth project with recognises the equality of the Traveller Community by providing programmes, initiatives and services that promote the participation and inclusion of the Traveller Community in Irish Society.Five Donegal winners selected for National Lottery Good Causes Awards was last modified: May 3rd, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)
The realization that cells are filled with molecules that move like machines fascinates many people. Students who grew up thinking of chemistry as bouncing molecules that did little more than link up and separate have a whole new paradigm to consider: molecules that walk, fold and unfold, spin and operate like ratchets, robots, wrenches and motors. Here are a few recent developments in the world of molecular machines:Brownian walk: Researchers in Science1 reported that myosin, a molecular “walking” motor used in muscle, harnesses the random force of Brownian motion to keep on track. Brownian motion is the random shuddering action of small molecules due to thermal motion in the environment. Like sails in the wind, myosin motors are built in such a way that they can make use of the vector component corresponding to the direction they need to go. “The leading neck swings unidirectionally forward, whereas the trailing neck, once lifted, undergoes extensive Brownian rotation in all directions before landing on a site ahead of the leading head,” said Shiroguchi and Kinosita. “The neck-neck joint is essentially free, and the neck motion supports a mechanism where the active swing of the leading neck biases the random motion of the lifted head to let it eventually land on a forward site.” This way they get a push for free. The authors did not discuss how this mechanism might have evolved.Gut-level machinery: Speaking of myosin, did you know it aids digestion? Your digestive tract is lined with microvilli, tiny projections that vastly increase the surface area of the intestinal membrane that absorbs nutrients. Now, scientists have found there’s a lot more going on in the tips of these projections. Science Daily reported on work at Vanderbilt that showed myosin is concentrated in the tips and appears actively involved in shedding membrane material at the tips. This process of vesicle formation and detachment may inject metabolic enzymes into the passing food material, as well as protect the lining of the intestine from invaders. It’s all done with motors: myosin 1a, “a protein with the potential to generate force and move cargo around in cells.” Matthew Tyska figured that there must be a reason these force-generating motors are concentrated in the microvilli, and sure enough, he found them at work: “It’s a little machine that can shed membrane from the tips,” he said. This could give a whole new dimension to the term bowel movement. Now his group is seeing if a similar mechanism operates in other cellular projections, like the hair cells of the inner ear. See also EurekAlert.Clockworks: A paper in Nature discussed the latest research into the molecular mechanisms behind biological clocks.2 There is not one clock molecule involved, but a host of proteins that form feedback loops in cycles that express and repress certain genes in response to environmental cues. One of the proteins is even nicknamed CLOCK. The article payed particular attention to PGC-1-alpha, a protein that appears intimately linked to both the circadian rhythm and metabolism, affecting the production of glucose, fatty acids and haem (iron-containing molecules). Many questions remain, however. This is clearly a work in progress.Splice and dice: Another paper in Nature used the word “machinery” six times, speaking of the spliceosome.3 “A complex macromolecular machinery in the nucleus of eukaryotic cells is responsible for pre-mRNA splicing,” said Blencowe and Khanna. They described how alternative splicing “is a remarkably efficient mechanism for a cell to increase the structural and functional diversity of its proteins, and it plays many roles in gene regulation” (see 05/20/2007). The way alternative splicing is controlled is by RNA “riboswitches,” including messenger-RNA transcripts that can regulate their own expression with feedback and feed-forward loops. These riboswitches can actually change shape in response to cues, and the shape determines how the gene will be expressed. The authors used the word switch 18 times. Earlier, riboswitches were thought to exist only in bacteria and fungi, but now it appears they may be common in higher animals and in plants. The authors speculated about evolution’s place in this: “It seems plausible that splicing-regulatory riboswitches represent a system that has evolved to coordinately regulate multiple genes in the same biochemical pathway using feedback and, in some cases, feed-forward mechanisms,” they asserted. “Presumably, the rapid kinetics and energy-saving advantages afforded by bypassing protein-mediated regulation explain why riboswitch aptamers have persisted during evolution and function at many levels of regulation of gene expression.” Yet this seems to assume what needs to be proved. They used the presence of these switches, and the advantages they appear to confer, as evidence they evolved, yet provided no details on how that could have occurred by natural selection. By contrast, the evidence they did provide shows the opposite of evolution: between very distant organisms, like fungi and higher plants, the genes involved are “evolutionarily conserved” (i.e., unevolved).Machine language: Two scientists publishing in PNAS sounded like factory planners, but were talking about cells.4 “Experimental and theoretical studies of proteins, acting as motors, ion pumps, or channels, and enzymes, show that their operation involves functional conformational motions,” they said. A few sentences later, the machine talk continued: “Generally, a machine is a mechanical device that performs ordered internal motions that are robust against external perturbations.” They were discussing how molecular machines in the cell, particularly myosin and ATP synthase, are examples of such robustness. “In conclusion,” they said in the final discussion section, “we have shown that motor proteins possess unique dynamical properties, intrinsically related to their functioning as machines.” This recalls a line Scott Minnich said in the film Unlocking the Mystery of Life: “It’s not convenient that we give them these [machine] names; it’s truly their function.” Part of the title read, “design principles of molecular machines.” Yet the authors attributed this design to undirected chance processes of evolution in this statement: “Actual proteins with specific architectures allowing robust machine operation may have developed through a natural biological evolution, with the selection favoring such special dynamical properties.” They ran a simulation of an “evolutionary computer optimization process” and achieved a “artificial elastic network architectures possessing machine-like properties,” but this statement blurs the line between intelligently-selected outcomes and chance.“Machine” language is quite common in the scientific literature. One often finds matter-of-fact discussion of proteins and enzymes as machines. They use energy and perform physical work according to tight specifications. The evolutionary conundrum is: how could functioning machines arise from non-functional matter in motion? Authors of scientific papers typically either ignore the question, or assume evolution did the design work. A more fruitful approach was offered by a biophysicist who wrote Nature last week, suggesting that we “Look at biological systems through an engineer’s eye.”5 R. S. Eisenberg said that when approaching a black box, whether an amplifier in a sound system or an unknown mechanism in a living cell, we should identify the inputs and outputs, the power supply and the device equation. Looking at biological devices with the eyes of an engineer, he said, can lead to fruitful experiments:Complex systems – for example, with many internal nonlinear connections like the integrated circuit modules of digital computers or, perhaps, the central nervous system – may not be easily analysed as devices, no matter how many experimental data are available. But it seems clear, at least to a physiologist, that productive research is catalysed by assuming that most biological systems are devices. Thinking today of your biological preparation as a device tells you what experiments to do tomorrow. Asking the questions in this way leads to the design of useful experiments that may eventually lead to the device description or equation, if it exists. If no device description emerges after extensive investigation of a biological system, one can look for other, more subtle descriptions of nature’s machines.An intelligent design scientist might feel vindicated. No evolutionary theorizing is needed in this approach. Assuming design in the device, and asking engineering questions, can stimulate a fruitful experimental program.1Shiroguchi and Kinosita, “Myosin V Walks by Lever Action and Brownian Motion,” Science, 25 May 2007: Vol. 316. no. 5828, pp. 1208-1212, DOI: 10.1126/science.1140468.2Grimaldi and Sassone-Corsi, “Circadian rhythms: Metabolic clockwork,” Nature 447, 386-387 (24 May 2007) | doi:10.1038/447386a.3Blencowe and Khanna, “Molecular biology: RNA in control,” Nature 47, 391-393 (24 May 2007) | doi:10.1038/447391a.4Togashi and Mikhailov, “Nonlinear relaxation dynamics in elastic networks and design principles of molecular machines,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0702950104, published online before print May 16, 2007.5R. S. Eisenberg, “Look at biological systems through an engineer’s eye,” Correspondence, Nature 447, 376 (24 May 2007) | doi:10.1038/447376a.These papers speak for themselves. Was anybody impressed by the evolutionary storytelling? Was it useful? Did it contribute to understanding in any way? How about, on the other hand, the machine language? Can you talk machine language without assuming intelligent design? Where do you think science is headed? Bye-bye, Charlie.(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… marshall kirkpatrick Tumblr, one of if not the largest blogging and curation platform on the web, today launched a new way to explore content by topic and discover the most popular Tumblr users on the hot topics of the day. Called Tumblr Explore, the feature is intended to make the huge quantity of content on the site easier to navigate and new content easier to discover. The company also framed the feature in its announcement as a way for users to get more readers on their own blogs.Who’s the hottest Tumblr on the topic of food right now, for example? That would be Rachel Lauren Spence, author of SheSalty. Egypt and Libya are newly hot topics and the most popular curator across the Tumblr network on both those topics is Joshua Nguyen, who just happens to work for Tumblr. Six of the twenty six hottest blogs on the hottest topics listed on Tumblr Explore right now are written by Tumblr staff members. Related Posts In the contest to determine what the best recommendation and discovery method of a content-stuffed web is, score one vote here for recent media by popular topic, followed by content curators with the most popular history of curation or content creation. It appears there’s no single human editor of Tumblr Explore, nor is there a way to surface the most popular content on a particular topic. It’s all one big vote on topics and people and from that vote follows the most recent stream of what’s new. It’s very different from the way content is surfaced on sites like Reddit or Techmeme. Will it work well? Time will tell, but it’s sure to be fun to wander through. Tags:#Blogging#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
Lying on a string cot beneath a row of pale green prayer beads that hangs from the wall, Asmeena Khan holds up a frail hand and says softly, “Please pray for me.”There is no electricity and Asmeena cannot summon the strength to wave away the flies that settle on her face. She has been bedridden since being in a car accident four months ago. Her brother says the doctors have said she is paralysed from the waist down, and will never walk again.Asmeena is the widow of Rakbar Khan, the dairy farmer who was killed by cow vigilantes on the night of July 20, 2018. After the murder of 28-year-old Rakbar, Asmeena, who has never been to school and is unsure even of her age, was left to raise her seven children. The eldest, 14-year-old Saahila, dropped out of school to help her mother with household chores and add to the family income by working as a daily wage labourer; four younger children were enrolled at a residential school in Aligarh run by a charitable society. The youngest two, aged six and three, have stayed with their mother in Tapkan village in Haryana’s Nuh district.When the accident happened. Asmeena was on her way to visit her children in Aligarh in a taxi. A truck collided with the car she was in. The driver and a 19-year-old niece accompanying Asmeena were killed. Asmeena was first taken to the medical college in Nuh and then referred to a hospital in New Delhi, as her injuries were serious.Bedridden and bereft Four months later, she still lies on a cot in her parent’s home. Rakbar’s parents have refused to take her in, says her brother Irfan. But, reasons Asmeena, “Rakbar’s father is an old man who barely makes ends meet by keeping a few goats. Rakbar’s brothers add to his income, but he can barely feed himself.”Asmeena got married when she was about 13. Three of her brothers work as drivers, two work in a poultry farm, and the youngest has dropped out of school and is learning to repair tyre punctures. Seventeen family members live in the two-room house at Tapkan. Two married sisters are visiting; they have come to find work as daily wage labourers, harvesting the ripened wheat in Nuh’s farms.Nuh’s woesHaryana’s Nuh district (earlier called Mewat), is just 75 km from Delhi and is part of the Gurgaon Parliamentary constituency. It is India’s ‘most backward district’, according to a 2018 ranking by Niti Aayog of 101 districts. The districts were graded on five parameters — health and nutrition, education, agriculture and water resources, financial inclusion and skill development, and basic infrastructure. Nuh came last. The place has also seen some of the country’s most horrific hate crimes, tracked since 2012 by data journalism website IndiaSpend. In September 2016, a 20-year-old Muslim woman and her 14-year-old cousin were gang-raped and two other members of the family murdered by four men because the family had allegedly eaten beef. A few days earlier, the Haryana Cow Welfare Commission chairman, Bhani Ram Mangla, had said the Haryana police would ‘check’ biryani dishes to ensure they don’t contain beef, which is banned in the State.The Haryana Gauvansh Sanrakshan and Gausamvardhan Act of 2015 punishes anyone for possessing beef, or transporting / slaughtering cows, with up to 10 years in jail and a fine of up to ₹1 lakh. In Nuh, 792 such FIRs were registered between November 2015 and March 2019. In that period, 1,194 arrests were made. But the lynchings seem to continue, despite a Supreme Court judgment last year that said “mob vigilantism and mob violence have to be prevented by the governments by taking strict action and by the vigil society who ought to report such incidents to the state machinery and the police instead of taking the law into their own hands.”Rakbar was murdered when he was walking back with his friend Aslam from Alwar in Rajasthan after buying cattle. Confronted by a group of gau rakshaks near Lalawandi village, Aslam managed to run and hide, but Rakbar was severely beaten. The last photograph of him, shot in police custody, shows him alive. But a few hours later, his post-mortem report states, he died of internal injuries. In his statement to the police, Aslam said he heard the attackers name the local MLA, Gyan Dev Ahuja of the BJP, who is on record saying cow slaughter is a bigger crime than terrorism.Left for deadLike Rakbar, Umar Khan and two others, Tahir Khan and Javed, were transporting cows from Mewat to Bharatpur in Rajasthan on November 14, 2017. While Tahir and Javed were beaten, Umar was shot dead, and his body thrown near the railway tracks in the Ramgarh area of Alwar.The most prominent of all lynching victims is Pehlu Khan, whose widow Jaibuna continues to live in their ramshackle house in Jaisinghpur in Nuh. The 55-year-old dairy farmer had gone to Jaipur to buy cows at a cattle fair. He was attacked on April 1, 2017 when he was returning home. Despite producing relevant documents, including a bill of sale, Pehlu and five others with him, including two of his sons, were beaten up by cow vigilantes near the Jaipur-Delhi national highway. Pehlu died of his injuries on April 3 that year.He was buried in a cemetery close to his home. A simple stone slab, painted yellow, marks his name and the date of his death but says little of the circumstances of his death, or life.In the background is a broken-down government school that seems to symbolise much of Nuh’s own predicament. Children walk home from school carrying small plates of rice with yoghurt, their mid-day meal, to share with families. Students study here until Class VIII, after which they must shift to a senior school some 10 km away. This is when many of the girls simply drop out.On the day I meet Jaibuna, she is alone at home. Two daughters, studying in Class VIII, have taken time off school to earn some money harvesting wheat. The energetic voices of children reciting the alphabet punctuate our conversation.Recorded deathJaibuna says she learned of her husband’s death on social media. Somebody had video-taped the ghastly lynching and put it up on Facebook. She began watching, then one of her children took the phone away. “He was still alive,” she says. She still hasn’t seen the rest of the clip.‘Justice’ is a big word for Jaibuna, who is just trying to get on with her life. An FIR was registered against six men. But a CID inquiry, which began after sustained protests by the family and civil society, said these men were not involved. In October 2018, witnesses for Pehlu, including his two sons and their lawyer, said they were shot at while going to court to record their statements. Police have dismissed the allegation as a ‘ploy’ to get the case transferred.For a family that works for daily wages, it can be hard to keep track of court dates and hearings. Two sons work as truck drivers and one manages the half-acre patch of land on which they grow wheat, jowar and bajra. “Nobody from the government came to visit me after what happened,” says Jaibuna. “I will never get justice from this government.”The family still owns a few goats and buffaloes. No cow has ever been bought since Pehlu Khan’s killing.(With inputs from Mohd Arif)The Delhi-based journalist writes on gender issues in India.