Q&A: Giants’ Derek Holland on his return to SF, going to the pen, and clubhouse vibes

first_imgFor more 2019 MLB preview stories, check out our Bay Area baseball guide.Farhan Zaidi got his guy. No, not Bryce Harper. Derek Holland, of course.Holland is back with the Giants on a one-year deal, and the offbeat left-hander with a big heart didn’t want it any other way.Holland, 32, earned the wordplay nickname “Dutch Oven” (Holland…Dutch…get it?) early in a career that began with the Texas Rangers. Like any good athlete who is quirky by nature, Holland has a few distinguishing …last_img read more

SA’s children get football fever

first_imgChildren blowing plastic vuvuzelas trumpets in Alexandra to mark 200 days remaining until the 2010 Fifa World Cup. The youngsters singing South Africa’s national anthem … … and waving the flag for Bafana Bafana, South Africa’s football team. (Images: Bongani Nkosi) MEDIA CONTACTS • Play Soccer South Africa +27 11 023 0877 RELATED ARTICLES • Football Fridays fever mounts • Flags fly for 32 World Cup teams • Fly the Flag for Football Toolkit • Global Fifa fan parks for 2010 • Football for Hope to unite SA Bongani NkosiWith South Africa counting down the days to the 2010 Fifa World Cup, a sports day recently held in Johannesburg‘s Alexandra township kicked off a campaign to spread both excitement and lifeskills among the country’s young people.On 23 November more than 80 youngsters, ranging from four to 14 years old, gathered for a football workshop with a difference at the township’s Football for Hope Centre.They were there to pick up tips on how to “bend it like David Beckham”, as well as learn about national pride and the values of “ubuntu” – a Southern African philosophy of fellowship and community. It was also an opportunity to celebrate the 200 days remaining until the tournament begins.The event was a joint initiative of Play Soccer South Africa (PSSA), the local arm of a US-based NGO, which gives life skills and football training to children from disadvantaged areas; the International Marketing Council (IMC); and Heartlines, which promotes good values in society.“This is a contribution made by the three organisations to say that children deserve to celebrate. It’s about introducing them to the 2010 hype,” said Kenny Hlabahlaba, PSSA’s programme manager.“It’s 28 Fridays to go,” Heartlines’ Mzamo Moloi told participants. “We’re here to play football with you, but at the same time we’re here to teach you love and respect.”They were each handed plastic vuvuzela trumpets and South African flags, after Moloi taught the crowd about the significance of its colours. “The white represents the racial diversity of South Africa,” he said.“The whole point is to partner with Play Soccer to use soccer as a means to instill values in the children. It’s about using soccer as a tool for social change.“South Africans should grab opportunities presented by the current excitement about the much-anticipated tournament to create a strong spirit of doing good for their communities.”It would be unrealistic to do this just for the month of the World Cup, he said. “We’re saying let’s build a movement to work for our communities even after the final, because life will go on.”Life lessons through footballPSSA is well established in Alexandra and hosts scores of children at the Football for Hope Centre every Monday. “We use football to teach them about HIV and Aids. Children should know about such things. They also learn their rights and responsibilities,” said Hlabahlaba.The organisation does the same kind of work in seven other areas in Gauteng, including the communities of Lawley and Fine Town, south of Johannesburg.Play Soccer’s clinics have helped 18-year-old Sello Mahlangu, an Alex youngster appointed to train the children, adopt a healthier lifestyle. “It takes us away from many bad things. Play Soccer has done a lot for Alex … we learn a lot and we play soccer,” he said.“It’s all about developing talents and unleashing the potential of the individual,” Hlabahlaba said.Drumming up support for BafanaThe timing of this initiative is perfect, as it’s preparing all South Africans to welcome the world in 2010, said IMC chief financial officer Moeletsi Mabuku. “The best we can do is welcome the people with the spirit of ubuntu, the spirit of humanity.”The IMC is also behind two other campaigns to drum up support for the World Cup and national football squad, Bafana Bafana.Replicas of the national flag have been handed out to communities across the country through the Fly the Flag for Football drive, which was launched in April. “[The campaign] is powerful and it’s growing. People want the flag. They’re flying it from their cars and everywhere,” said Loyiso Stofile, the IMC’s marketing services coordinator.South Africans are also being encouraged to wear football shirts to work at the end of each week as part of the Football Fridays concept to build spirit for next year’s tournament. “Companies are coming through and supporting it,” he added.“That people can wear the gear of any team, be it Moroka Swallows, Brazil or Russia’s Rubin Kazan, is quite relevant to the World Cup. We have people coming here and we have to show that we are a supportive nation,” said Stofile.“And as for Bafana Bafana, it really does need the nation to rally behind it,” Mabuku said. He believes the two campaigns will do a lot to inspire the team to do its best in 2010.“The only way we can support our squad is by wearing their jersey and flying the South African flag with pride,” said Mabuku. “As we consolidate our support, we hope the coach and the players can tap into that.”The IMC is supporting most “events that are milestones towards 2010”, he said.At the Alex workshop I asked nine-year-old Lebogang Molapo about his opinion of Bafana Bafana. “Bafana Bafana will win it [the World Cup],” he said proudly. “Will we beat Brazil with its champion player Kaka?” I challenged. The youngster was in no doubt as he replied: “Yes, because Bafana Bafana has Teko Modise and Siphiwe Tshabala.”last_img read more

NGT bench shifted on our request: Parrikar

first_imgIt is now clear that it was on Goa government’s recommendation that the Union Ministry for Environment Forests and Climate Change decided to change the jurisdiction of the National Green Tribunal(NGT) for Goa-related cases, from its Pune bench to the principal bench in Delhi.Finally breaking his silence, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Friday that Pune was not convenient for Goa as in case a lawyer has to be sent to represent any case, it takes three days. “Delhi has excellent connectivity (with Goa),” Mr. Parrikar told presspersons here on Friday.He said that the Goa government did not have a legal set-up in Pune as against in Delhi, where the government has empanelled lawyers.The Bombay High Court at Goa on August 22 stayed the transfer of Goa-related NGT cases to Delhi jurisdiction of the NGT and also issued notices to the State and Central government.The August 10 notification had shifted Goa from the Western zone jurisdiction of the NGT to the Northern zone, while retaining Gujarat and Maharashtra in the Western zone.The Opposition including Congress and Aam Aadmi Party and the environmental activists had slammed the relocation of Goa to the Northern zone as harassment to green petitioners because while Pune is about 470 km from Goa, the distance from Goa to Delhi is nearly 2000 km.”This is meant to discourage petitioners from approaching the NGT. This is a really draconian move by the government which has been prompted by vested interests,” Congress spokesperson and AICC Secretary Girish Chodankar had said.Goa Foundation and more than 20 groups including green NGOs have opposed the move and decided to oppose the move when the suo motu case taken up by the high court here comes up for hearing on September 5.last_img read more

Videos: Louisville Owned SportsCenter’s Top 10 Plays After Dominating Syracuse

first_imgDonovan Mitchell throws down dunk against Syracuse..Twitter/@theACCDNMidway through the second half of Wednesday night’s 72-58 home win over Syracuse, the Louisville Cardinals were doing whatever they wanted on offense. The dominant display was heavily featured on SportsCenter this morning, where the Cardinals had three of the Top 10 plays of the day.First up, at No. 7, this beautiful behind-the-back assist by Chinanu Onuaku.Nanu droppin’ dimes. pic.twitter.com/7MFnoY0qRb— LouisvilleSportsLive (@LvilleSprtsLive) February 18, 2016Next, at No. 4, another Onuaku assist—this time to Jaylen Johnson for a powerful alley-oop.It’s like Louisville found a “if you make the other team cry they have to let you play in the tournament” loophole pic.twitter.com/m4kMWmXva4— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) February 18, 2016And finally, Louisville took home the top play, with this ferocious alley-oop from Damion Lee to Donovan Mitchell.If you look close enough, you can see a smile on Donovan Mitchell’s face as he slams this one home for @GoCards!https://t.co/xlTSYEXZ08— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) February 18, 2016That one was just mean. Mitchell liked it so much, he made it the header photo for his Twitter profile. donovan mitchell twitterIt’s been a rough few weeks for the Cardinals. Last night’s big win had to be pretty cathartic.last_img read more

Global Collaboration to Reduce Cybercrimes Urged

first_imgStory Highlights The Hon. Julian Robinson, is urging closer collaboration between developed and developing countries in efforts to reduce the prevalence of cyber-crimes. State Minister for Science, Technology, Energy, and Mining, Hon. Julian Robinson, is urging closer collaboration between developed and developing countries in efforts to reduce the prevalence of cyber-crimes.He made the call while speaking at the just concluded international cyber crime conference in Seoul, South Korea.Making his contribution, on the topic: “Beyond Digital Divide towards Global Prosperity”, Mr. Robinson noted existing disparities between developed and developing countries in terms of the necessary interventions to effectively counter cyber crimes.“While the divide between developed and developing countries has narrowed significantly in the (general) area of legislation (enactment), it remains with respect to the ability of some countries to respond to cyber incidents and threats, through Computer Incident Response Teams (CIRTs),” he said.In stressing that the importance of legislation in the fight against cyber crimes “cannot and should not be overstated”, the State Minister said the work programme for both the Organisation of American States (OAS) and International Telecommunication Union (ITU) identifies the need for the implementation of legislative measures aimed at enabling investigation and prosecution.“Itis not sufficient, however, to simply promulgate legislation. Countries, developed and developing alike, have to continuously review their legislation to ensure that it appropriately addresses new and emerging cyber threats,” he underscored.In this regard, Mr. Robinson said the Jamaican Government has moved proactively to this end.He informed that in addition to the Cybercrimes Act, several other pieces of legislation are utilised in Jamaica to prosecute cyber crimes. These include: the Larceny Act; Interception of Communications Act; and Child Pornography Act.The State Minister added that accompanying legislation, in the form of the Electronic Transactions Act, has also been promulgated to promote and support legitimate engagements.In relation to the Cybercrimes Act, Mr. Robinson advised that a provision was incorporated into the legislation mandating a review by a Joint Select Committee of the Houses of Parliament, two years after the legislation’s implementation. He explained that this was done to ensure that the Act’s provisions remain consistent with and relevant to international best practices.As regards Computer Incident Response Teams (CIRTs), the Minister pointed out that any quest to establish such an entity must be supported by an effective training regime for the personnel involved, in order for it to be successful.He pointed out that of over 18 established CIRTs currently, only two are in the Caribbean,In this regard, the State Minister disclosed that Jamaica has begun to develop a cadre of professionals with the technical expertise to identify, determine, and respond to cyber and other technology-related crimes. He, however, noted that the complement of personnel is “not yet sufficient.”“The Jamaica Constabulary Force, for example, has a specific unit within its Organised Crime Investigation Division (OCID) with responsibility for investigating cyber crime. With support from our international and bilateral partners, the unit would be able to collaborate and, otherwise, share its resources and know-how with other Caribbean countries,” he indicated.Mr. Robinson also disclosed that a specialized unit also exists within the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), which is responsible for prosecuting cyber crime incidents and liaising with and supervising police investigations.The State Minister emphasized the need for increased cross-border collaboration and training. This, he said, would be particularly beneficial to officers and stakeholders attached to or utilizing Jamaica’s Resident Magistrates Courts, where most cybercrimes are prosecuted, but proceedings are often delayed. This, he explained, is consequent on court personnel’s unfamiliarity with the intricacies associated with cybercrimes.In this regard, he stressed the need for these officers to be sensitized accordingly in order to facilitate smooth and timely disposal of matters.“As we grapple with this increasing problem of cybercrime, it is imperative that we continue to co-operate at the (local), regional, and international levels, with a view to reducing its impact on the prosperity of our citizens and our economies. Our efforts certainly can be enhanced when we find common means to tackle this increasingly problematic issue,” Mr. Robinson contended.The two-day conference, themed “Global Prosperity through an Open and Secure Cyberspace: Opportunities, Threats and Cooperation”, was organised by the South Korean Foreign Ministry and staged at Seoul’s Convention and Exhibition Centre (COEX).It brought together more than 1,600 government officials, civil leaders, and cyberspace security experts from 87 countries around the world. The State Minister also emphasized the need for increased cross-border collaboration and training. There are existing disparities between developed and developing countries in terms of the necessary interventions to effectively counter cyber crimes.last_img read more

Paul OGrady Asks London Mayor To Stop Herding Of Sheep Across London

first_imgFor the Love of Dogs star Paul O’Grady MBE has written to the Lord Mayor of London asking her to put a stop to the archaic and dangerous tradition of herding sheep across London Bridge.In his letter, the comedian, presenter, actor and writer calls on Fiona Woolf to drop the stunt and switch to a more compassionate form of fundraising that would not cause distress to animals.“I am writing to express my deep concern about the sheep who will be herded across London Bridge in a bid to raise money on 5 October, and I wanted to urge you, as the leader of the council, to replace this spectacle with another form of fundraising,” he wrote. “I understand that as Lord Mayor of the City of London, you are historically entitled to the Freedom of the City, a privilege that theoretically affords you the right to carry a naked sword in public, in addition to other equally archaic practices. I am sure that you will agree that these “rights” should not be exercised simply because they can be exercised.“I hope you will agree that sheep are not inanimate props. As someone who has had the pleasure of sharing my home with these wonderful animals, I can tell you that sheep are intelligent and complex individuals. They flock to keep safe from predators. If threatened, they all run together for a short distance and then turn to face the danger as a group. Just like humans, dogs, chickens and most other animals, sheep make different sounds to communicate different emotions, and flock mates recognise each other, even if they’ve been separated for years.“Herding sheep down a very busy London street while cars continue to speed along the road next to them shows a disregard for their welfare and needlessly causes them distress. I have no doubt that you would be able to match, if not exceed, the donations that the previous Lord Mayor received by promoting an event without the use of any animals, and compassionate Londoners would thank you for it.”Sheep are sentient, intelligent and complex animals. A University of Illinois study found that they perform nearly as well as pigs on IQ tests and have demonstrated problem-solving abilities.last_img read more

Alberta adds jobs amid countrywide declines

first_imgJob creation is up in Alberta, while the numbers are down throughout the country.The mixed news on the jobs front came out Friday morning as Statistics Canada released August results.ATB’s Chief Economist Todd Hirsch said it was a good report for the province.“It was a surprisingly strong number for Alberta (with) over 16 thousand new jobs,” said Hirsch.“It was one of the strongest single months we have seen in a long, long time.”He said though the numbers can rise and fall month-to-month, this continues a trend of the province adding jobs, especially over the past 12 months.Economist Trevor Tombe with the University of Calgary said the province set a new all-time high for positions in August, however, the unemployment rate stayed at 6.7 per cent.“Alberta’s population has also been growing; you want to look at what fraction of the population is employed,” Tombe said.Both said the job numbers prove the province is crawling, not running, towards a full recovery from the recession.Hirsch says another good sign is that jobs are coming from a wide range of sectors, which will make the province more stable going forward even if they are lower paying positions than the lucrative jobs handed out from the oil industry before prices crashed.The unemployment rate for Calgary climbed to 8.2 per cent, though Hirsch believes that mostly due to people moving to the city without first being employed.On the national level, Statistics Canada reported some surprise job losses last month.The Canadian economy lost 51,600 net jobs in a decrease that drove up the unemployment rate from 5.8 to an even six per cent.Analysts had predicted the country would add 10,000 positions.But TD senior economist Brian DePratto notes that beneath the disappointing headline numbers there were some solid results.He points out there was an increase in full-time work — with the economy adding 40,400 permanent positions.The employment drop last month was caused by a loss of 92,000 part-time positions, with nearly all coming from the province of Ontario.last_img read more

Colorado lawsuit could ripple through US cannabis industry

first_imgDENVER – A federal trial in Colorado could have far-reaching effects on the United States’ budding marijuana industry if a jury sides with a couple who say having a cannabis business as a neighbour hurts their property’s value.The trial set to begin Monday in Denver is the first time a jury will consider a lawsuit using federal anti-racketeering law to target cannabis companies. But the marijuana industry has closely watched the case since 2015, when attorneys with a Washington, D.C.-based firm first filed their sweeping complaint on behalf of Hope and Michael Reilly.One of the couple’s lawyers, Brian Barnes, said they bought the southern Colorado land for its views of Pikes Peak and have since built a house on the rural property. They also hike and ride horses there.But they claim “pungent, foul odours” from a neighbouring indoor marijuana grow have hurt the property’s value and their ability to use and enjoy it.“That’s just not right,” Barnes said. “It’s not right to have people in violation of federal law injuring others.”An attorney for the business targeted by the suit plans to argue the couple’s property has not been damaged, relying in part on the county’s tax valuations of the Reillys’ land ticking up over time.Vulnerability to similar lawsuits is among the many risks facing marijuana businesses licensed by states but still violating federal law. Suits using the same strategy have been filed in California, Massachusetts and Oregon.Mirroring the Reilly complaint, several claim the smell of marijuana damages neighbouring owners’ ability to enjoy their land or harms their property value.The question now is whether jurors accept the argument.“They can claim a $1 million drop in property value, but if a jury does not agree and says $5,000, that’s not that big of a deal,” said Rob Mikos, a Vanderbilt University law professor who specializes in drug law. “That’s why there are a lot of eyes on the case.”Congress created the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act — better known as RICO — to target the Mafia in the 1970s, allowing prosecutors to argue leaders of a criminal enterprise should pay a price along with lower-level defendants.But the anti-racketeering law also allows private parties to file lawsuits claiming their business or property has been damaged by a criminal enterprise. Those who prove it can be financially compensated for damages times three, plus attorneys’ expenses.Starting in 2015, opponents of the marijuana industry decided to use the strategy against companies producing or selling marijuana products, along with investors, insurers, state regulators and other players. Cannabis companies immediately saw the danger of high legal fees or court-ordered payouts.That concern only grew when a Denver-based federal appeals court ruled in 2017 that the Reillys could use anti-racketeering law to sue the licensed cannabis grower neighbouring their property. Insurance companies and other entities originally named in the Reillys’ suit have gradually been removed, some after reaching financial settlements out of court.The case focuses on property in Pueblo County, where local officials saw marijuana as an opportunity to boost an area left behind by the steel industry. Most Colorado counties ban outdoor grows, forcing pot cultivators to find expensive warehouse space.Pueblo officials positioned their sunny, flat plains as the alternative. They created financial incentives in hopes of drawing growers to outdoor fields or cavernous buildings left vacant by other industries.Parker Walton was among the early comers, buying 40 acres in the rural town of Rye in 2014.Barnes said the Reillys made three separate land purchases between 2011 and 2014, gradually reaching more than 100 acres. They learned about plans for the marijuana business bordering their final purchase four months after completing the sale, he said.Walton put up a 5,000-square-foot (465-square-meter) building to grow and harvest marijuana plants indoors. The Reillys filed their lawsuit in early 2015. A year later, Walton announced the company’s first harvest via Instagram, snapping a photo of a strain dubbed “Purple Trainwreck” hanging to cure in a dim room.Fewer than five people including Walton work for the company, which sells its products to retail stores, his attorney, Matthew Buck said.Buck said he’s confident jurors will decide the Reillys’ property has not been harmed. Buck warned, though, that defending against a similar lawsuit comes at a high cost for marijuana businesses while plaintiffs with support from a large law firm have little to lose.Cooper & Kirk, the firm handling the couple’s suit, has a conservative reputation, including a founding partner who worked for the U.S. Justice Department during the Reagan administration. Barnes said members of the firm were “troubled” as states began legalizing the adult use of marijuana because of the inherent conflict with federal law, and they brainstormed legal strategies.Walton created a website this month to raise money for his defence. He wrote that a loss could jeopardize “all legal cannabis operations in all states.”But some lawyers who have defended companies in similar lawsuits said those fears are overhyped.Adam Wolf, a California attorney, said he believes the suits are primarily intended to scare third-party companies into cutting ties with marijuana firms or persuading cannabis companies to shut down. But long-term, Wolf said the U.S. Supreme Court has curtailed lawsuits making civil racketeering claims against other industries.Courts could apply the same logic to cannabis, he argued.“What the plaintiffs seemed to be saying is anybody who touched, in any matter, any marijuana business is potentially liable,” Wolf said. “And that is a soundly rejected argument by the courts.”Barnes, though, said the number of racketeering lawsuits awaiting action suggests attorneys with no ties to his firm believe in the strategy.___Kathleen Foody is a member of AP’s marijuana beat team. Follow her at twitter.com/katiefoodyFind complete AP marijuana coverage here:apnews.com/tag/LegalMarijuanalast_img read more

Annual Christmas Pyjama Drive a success

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Annual Christmas Pyjama Drive in FSJ has been a success this year.Fort St. John started participating in the Christmas Pyjama Drive in 2013, the event originally started on the Lower Mainland in 2010, pyjamas were collected and distributed through various Lower Mainland Christmas Bureaus to underprivileged children.This year, the PJ drive ran from November 14st until December 9th, 2018. The pyjama drive collects new PJ’s in all sizes, for children aged 0 to 16 years. “The Drive ended last weekend and I delivered most of the PJs this morning.  There are a few more donations trickling in so we don’t know our final numbers yet, but it will likely be over 400 pairs,” said Jennifer Mc Cracken, Event Co-ordinator.Some of the organizations we have helped over the years have included FSJ Pregnancy Care Center, FSJ Women’s Resource Society, FSJ Big Brothers & Big Sisters, the Salvation Army Christmas Hampers, Community Bridge (formerly North Peace Community Resource Society) and a local Christmas hamper program organized by Phoenix Volunteer Club.To date, 2,867 pairs of Pyjamas have been donated!last_img read more