Good Biology Without Natural Selection

first_imgExcellent biological research that produces understanding and application can ignore natural selection completely.If natural selection is useless in science, as we have argued recently (4 Jan 2019, 10 Jan 2019), then the flip side should also be true: scientists should be able to do useful work by ignoring natural selection entirely. They should be able to discover, analyze, explain, and apply biological discoveries without it. This contradicts Dobzhansky’s frequently quoted mythoid, “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.” Here are some examples in the news.Divining roots: Revealing how plants branch out to access water (Science Daily). When seeking water in the dark underground, plant roots use a method called “hydropatterning” to succeed. The root only triggers root hairs to branch out when they sense water. Scientists at the University of Nottingham show the remarkable process in a video animation that looks for all the world like a smart drill bit finding its way down, down, with tiny root hairs occasionally branching out. They mention “divining roots” in jest. No water-witching or divining rod is implied. Instead, the plant controls the process by a “branching master gene called ARF7.” Without it, they found, the root cannot perform hydropatterning.Professor Sadanandom explained: “Plants are relatively immobile and therefore their growth and development is very much dependent on their environment. Our research has identified the particular protein which can modify, and even inactivate root branching, therefore limiting plant growth and development.“This is hugely exciting as it opens up the possibility for us to adapt this protein interaction and potentially develop plants that could continue to branch roots even in challenging conditions such as water scarcity.”Professor Bennett concluded: “Water is critical for plant growth, development and, ultimately, their survival. Surprisingly, understanding how plants sense water availability has eluded scientists until now. By studying how plant roots modify their branching in response to water availability, we have uncovered a novel molecular mechanism.Readers will look in vain for any mention of evolution or natural selection (NS) in these articles. They will see hydropatterning described as “an adaptive response,” but the researchers do not mean adaptation by NS, because that would require multiple generations selecting chance mutations in a population. They mean, instead, that the root is adapting to water presence as it grows. That had to be a pre-programmed response. In short, this research aided scientific discovery, analysis, understanding and application without any need for evolutionary storytelling.The most important hair on your head is on the inside (Phys.org). This article tells about research on cilia on your brain cells. They look like little hairs sticking out of the cells, but are profoundly important for health and function in the brain. Researchers at the Norwegian Institute of Science and Technology apparently had no need for Darwin to come in and explain how cilia evolved. They are too busy working to understand how cilia work. Cilia, by the way, are one of the examples of irreducible complexity that Michael Behe gave in his leading-edge intelligent design book, Darwin’s Black Box.The immune system’s fountain of youth (Medical Xpress). Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel are not thinking about natural selection. They are more concerned about people: “If only we could keep our bodies young, healthy and energetic, even as we attain the wisdom of our years.” To help on that goal, they are studying what the body does with senescent cells, cells “not completely dead but suffering loss of function or irreparable damage.” Inability to clear these damaged cells may contribute to aging by causing inflammation. By learning about how the body cleans out senescent cells in mice, and making it more effective, they feel they could prolong human lifespan. Would speculating about natural selection help their efforts in any way?How did your shoulder form? (Medical Xpress). The headline seems made to order for a Darwinian just-so story about how your shoulder evolved by natural selection. Instead, we read from this press release from the University of Delaware,Whether you’re pitching a baseball, playing a violin, or typing at your desk, your shoulder helps you get the job done. This joint is a complex machine, and in order to protect shoulders from injury, scientists want to develop a better understanding of how the most delicate parts of these joints work. Surely they must employ NS in their understanding, right? Isn’t that what makes sense in biology? Apparently not: “assistant professor of biomedical engineering Megan Killian is using novel methods to study muscle activity during the maturation and healing of the rotator cuff, the group of muscles and tissues that helps to keep the shoulder joint in place.” She’s looking at the shoulder from an engineer’s perspective. Not only that, her university is promoting the engineering perspective for making sense of biology among its next generation of researchers:Biomedical engineering students learned about how dissimilar tissues in our bodies attach in a course offered this past fall called Structural Interfaces in Biology. This course, developed at UD by Killian, covers how materials integrate and attach in biological systems, from tendon-to-bone attachments to the way gecko feet attach to smooth surfaces.So how did your shoulder form? Ask an engineer. Do NOT ask a Darwinian, unless you just want to hear a story.Because of its good bioengineering design, a shoulder can be used to wield a heavy sword in complex, rapid moves, or play the most delicate notes on a violin. Differing materials, including bone, muscle and tendons, must be able to reliably attach to make this possible. Should scientists expect us to endure just-so stories about how natural selection engineered such biomechanical masterpieces by chance? (Credits: left: David Rives channel. Right: Alma Deutscher channel.)Bioengineers unveil surprising sensory and self-healing abilities of seashore creatures (Science Daily). Limpets are small shellfish that adhere to rocks in tidal waters. Again, bioengineers lead the way in helping us understand their remarkable repair abilities:New research from bioengineers paints a surprisingly complex picture of limpets — the little seashore creatures that are ubiquitous on rocky patches of beaches in many parts of the world. The bioengineers have discovered that limpets are able to detect minor damage to their shells with surprising accuracy before remodelling them to make them stronger. In many ways, the way they heal is similar to the way broken bones mend in mammals.The researchers at Trinity College Dublin not only ignored natural selection in their research, analysis and understanding of these little animals, they found something positively anti-evolutionary: that limpets use a “surprisingly complex” method of repair that is similar to what mammals do. Even more telling, the full paper in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface—usually a bastion of evolutionary storytelling—fails to mention evolution or natural selection at all.Jonathan Wells has re-cast the Dobzhansky quote to say, “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of the evidence.” Natural selection is not evidence. It is a story, a scenario, a narrative gloss applied on the surface of the phenomenon under study, turning it hideous. If you don’t want to imagine Michelangelo’s David perverted by a coat of garrish neon-glow paint, then keep natural selection out of your biology, too.See also: “Will Humpty Darwin Fall in 2019” (3 Jan 2019).(Visited 368 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Press release: Brand South Africa commemorates Africa Day

first_imgBrand South Africa commemorates Africa Day by reflecting on the dynamics of socio-political change.Johannesburg, Thursday 25 May 2017 – Today the world commemorates Africa Day – the annual tribute that aims to promote greater unity and solidarity between African countries, and seeks to accelerate the political and socio-economic integration of Africa.Held on 25 May each year – Africa Day presents an opportunity for South Africans to reconnect and recommit themselves in support of all government interventions to develop a better Africa and a better world.South Africa is celebrating Africa Day with a month-long celebration of what it means to be African. Africa Month sees a festival of ideas and cultural exchange with the aim of promoting and strengthening the creative economy, cultural diplomacy and social cohesion.As part of these celebrations, Brand South Africa in collaboration with Prof. Ian Liebenberg hosted a day of reflection under the theme Political Dialogue & Dynamics of Socio-Political Change – Lessons from Dakar 1987, as part of the African Unity for Renaissance Conference. The event was held on Tuesday 23 May 2017 at Freedom Park in Tshwane.Brand South Africa CEO, Dr. Kingsley Makhubela said: “In global terms, and particularly on the African continent, the success of conflict management and mediation, conflict prevention, and resolution as well as intervention, are all linked to the ability and capability of political rivals to engage in constructive political dialogue.“Political dialogue has played a significant role in South Africa’s transition to democracy. From informal, behind the scenes talks during the 1980s, talks about talks on to fully fledged formal negotiations aimed at establishing a democratic dispensation, political dialogue stands out as critical feature of the country’s journey towards democracy.”It is in this regard that the 1987 meeting in Dakar between the ANC and an IDASA delegation, stands out as a significant moment in the history of South Africa’s journey towards democracy.“Contemporary developments in South Africa indicate that political dialogue is not a once-off. It remains a crucial feature of societies transitioning towards democracy and transforming an unequal socio-economic environment. Critical and constructive dialogue and its practical outcomes is an imperative for the long-term maintenance and deepening of democracy and the nurturing and broadening of constitutionalism,” added Dr Makhubela.Africa Day (formerly African Freedom Day and African Liberation Day), is the annual commemoration of the 25 May 1963 foundation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) (now known as the African Union) which is celebrated in various countries on the African continent, as well as around the world.Follow the conversation on #SANationBrandlast_img read more

Vented Crawlspaces and the Psychrometric Chart Are Not Friends

first_imgReally, the argument about whether you should vent a crawlspace in a humid climate is over. Advanced Energy’s research project from 2002 proved that closed crawlspaces outperform vented crawlspaces.A quick look at the psychrometric chart below shows that the argument should never have existed in the first place. (Click the image to see an enlarged version.)The psychrometric chart tells allWhat’s going on here is that we’re starting at the blue dot to the right of the arrow. It’s a summer day, the outdoor temperature is 90°F and the relative humidity (RH) is about 53%. I chose that RH because here in Atlanta, we have a good number of hours with the dew point at about 70°F and don’t spend a lot of time above that number.By looking all the way to the left of the chart, where the relative humidity is 100%, you can read the dew point. RELATED ARTICLESBuilding an Unvented CrawlspaceGBA Encyclopedia: CrawlspacesHow to Insulate a Basement Wall CAD Details from the GBA Library: Building Plans for Conditioned CrawlspacesFine Homebuilding: Sealing a CrawlspaceAn Open Discussion on Closed CrawlspacesAdvanced Energy’s Crawlspace Web SiteCrawlspace Remediation Strategies from CMHC Building Science Corp.: Conditioned Crawlspace Construction, Performance and Codes The point of that blue dot is that when that air comes into the crawlspace, it cools down. I chose 80°F as the temperature it reaches in the crawlspace. By looking at the relative humidity curve it lands on, you can see that it went from 53% to about 70% RH.That is not a good number at which to keep your RH, because it’s where mold growth can start taking off. The more time your crawlspace spends at 70% RH or higher, the more likely you are to have mold growing.Of course, the final RH of the air in the crawlspace is determined by the RH that the entering air gets to (once it cools) and the mixing of the two air masses. Still, the trend is clear. In a humid climate, when you bring outdoor air into a vented crawlspace, its relative humidity goes up.Vented crawlspaces have moisture problemsVented crawlspaces can also get cooler than 80°F. I took the photo of the hygrometer below on a warm August day here in the Atlanta area, and you can see that the air was about 70°F with 92% RH.And then there’s the evidence, of course. If you’ve spent any time in vented crawlspaces, you know — and your lungs and nose know — that they have problems. The photo below is from one I was in last month. Duct leakage exacerbates the problem here.You can’t just seal up every crawlspace you see, however. If the crawlspace has atmospheric combustion appliances, for example, you need to deal with that issue first. For the best guidance on how to do this right, go to crawlspaces.org, Advanced Energy’s website on the subject, and download their 75-page pdf file.Allison Bailes of Decatur, Georgia, is a speaker, writer, energy consultant, RESNET-certified trainer, and the author of the Energy Vanguard Blog. You can follow him on Twitter at @EnergyVanguard.last_img read more

Where does Pasaol’s 49-point game stack up against past scoring outbursts?

first_imgLATEST STORIES For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. But Pasaol came six points short of the record held by now-Mapua assistant coach Ed Cordero.Cordero fired an eye-popping 54 points in his heyday with the then-UST Glowing Goldies to set the long-standing UAAP feat in 1979.Letran coach Jeff Napa, who owns the highest scoring output in the past two decades after firing 43 points for National U in 2002 in Season 65, meanwhile, sees this as an opportunity for Pasaol to make a difference for the 0-6 Red Warriors.“It’s a great motivation for him so that he can work harder in his career and help his team,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Meralco completes sweep of Star with OT win, returns to Finals Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Two-time UAAP MVP Kiefer Ravena, whose career-best was 38 points in Season 77 back in 2014, tweeted: “49 is already hard to do. But in 20/30 FG% and in 32 mins? Well I be damned.”Fellow two-time UAAP MVP Bobby Ray Parks, who only scored as high as 35 in Season 75 in 2012, hoped that the guard could have broken the half-century mark, as he tweeted: “Let Pasaol get his 50 piece!”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutPasaol’s 49 points on an efficient 20-of-30 shooting, that went with top of eight rebounds, is the most points scored by a Red Warrior since James Yap’s 36 in UAAP Season 65 in 2002.In terms of scoring, he also surpassed Paolo Mendoza, who had a 48-point performance for UP in 1999, the legendary duel of UE legend Allan Caidic, who had 46, and UST great Pido Jarencio, who answered with 48 markers, in Game 3 of the UAAP Season 47 Finals in 1984. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netAlvin Pasaol set the Philippine basketball scene ablaze after his 49-point outburst on Wednesday.Former UAAP standouts were nonetheless impressed with the feat from University of the East forward even if it came with a 106-100 loss to La Salle.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president MOST READ Read Next LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City View commentslast_img read more

Alicia Keys Helps Host HIVAIDS Event In Harlem

first_imgGrammy Award-winning artist and advocate Alicia Keys rallied with community leaders and residents of Harlem yesterday, hosting a community conversation aimed at tackling the issue of HIV/AIDS.Hosted by Harlem Hospital together with Greater Than AIDS, Ms. Keys was joined by Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-NY); Denise Soares, the Executive Director of Harlem Hospital; Minister Vin Baker of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem; Dr. Helene Gayle; Russell Simmons; and Greater Than AIDS ambassador Stephanie Brown, in an open and honest discussion with residents of Harlem about HIV/AIDS, its impact in the community, and the stigma that often surrounds the disease.In Harlem, as nationally, people of color have been disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. The large majority of people living with HIV in Harlem are Black or Hispanic. In 2011, the most current year data is available, the rate of HIV diagnosis per 100,000 population was 4 to 5 times higher in Harlem as compared to the nation overall.Speaking to an energetic crowd of over 400 at Harlem Hospital, the speakers stressed the urgency of addressing HIV/AIDS in communities of color. The event brought together different parts of the community– faith and political leaders, social and health care advocates, artists and young people – to break down the barriers of stigma, fear and ignorance and promote HIV testing and treatment for those who are positive. Following the community conversation, Alicia Keys, Congressman Rangel and Dr. Gayle joined with community residents to get tested as part of a free on-site HIV screening being offered by Harlem Hospital.“There are serious misconceptions out there that keep HIV/AIDS in the shadows,” said Keys. “Each and every one of us has to come together to change that. There is no reason that Black and Hispanic people should continue to be affected like this. By talking about HIV/AIDS honestly and openly, we can overcome stigma and fear and start a real dialogue that allows us to know, learn and share the truth.”Earlier this year, Ms. Keys joined with Greater Than AIDS to launch EMPOWERED, a new campaign to reach women in the U.S. about HIV/AIDS and highlight their power in changing the course of the epidemic.“We cannot sit idly as this epidemic continues to spread,” said Congressman Rangel. “In fact, the fight against HIV/AIDS is one of my highest priorities in Congress. Recently I introduced the Communities United with Religious Leaders for the Elimination of HIV/AIDS (CURE) Act. It would authorize the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the National Institutes of Health to provide grants to health agencies, and community and faith-based organizations for education, outreach, research, and testing activities related to HIV/AIDS prevention. I urge my colleagues in Congress to put politics aside and act on this important issue. But all of us, from all corners of society, need to do more. I will continue to fight for those afflicted with HIV/AIDS and will work tirelessly until the day we have a cure.”“We know AIDS is caused by a virus that attacks the immune system. But societal factors are among the leading reasons why some populations are more impacted by HIV than others,” said Dr. Helene Gayle, president and CEO of CARE USA. “We know there are a variety of reasons why communities of color are disproportionately affected by HIV and AIDS. They are some of the same reasons that our communities are disproportionately impacted by other diseases—social and economic factors, including poverty. For example, African Americans are more likely than whites to be uninsured, less likely to be privately insured and have access to high quality services, and are more likely to postpone medical care due to lack of transportation resources and other competing needs. But these types of underlying societal factors can be changed. They must be changed, by all of us.”“The faith community plays a crucial role in this conversation,” said Vin Baker, a former NBA all-star who is now a minister at Abyssinian Church in Harlem. “We need to encourage our families to talk about HIV and AIDS, to remove the unnecessary stigma around it. And most importantly, we need to support our brothers and sisters who live with it.”“We have a responsibility to ourselves, to our friends, and to our community to become educated on the impacts of HIV/AIDS,” said Russell Simmons, hip-hop icon and co-founder of Def Jam Recordings. “And the hip-hop community has an important role to play in that. We have to make sure we promote love and tolerance, not fear and stigma. We have to stand in solidarity with our HIV positive brothers and sisters. As Alicia said, artists have a responsibility, we’ve got to fight for others.”EMPOWERED, the cross-platform public information campaign Ms. Keys developed with Greater Than AIDS, speaks to both those affected by HIV/AIDS and allies in the fight about what can be done to change the course of the disease. It includes outreach through public service ads, social media and community programs. With a particular focus on women, EMPOWERED encourages increased knowledge and understanding about HIV and AIDS, open communications with family and friends, use of protection, regular testing and adherence to treatment for those living with the disease.“When I got infected, I wasn’t educated at all about HIV,” said Stephanie Brown, an artist and advocate who serves as an ambassador for Greater Than AIDS and EMPOWERED. Stephanie, who learned she was HIV positive at 19, joined the campaign earlier this year. “It was rough. Thinking about the idea that nobody wants you, it was like this whole new life I had to start living. At first I didn’t even want to start treatment. But it was what I had to do. What made me start fighting back though was the silence, the fact that no one was talking about it. That’s when I decided to share my experience and speak up for myself and for others who can’t. That’s why I joined EMPOWERED. Sympathy needs to be taken out of HIV. We need to start getting mad about it.”During the 90-minute forum, audience members were encouraged to engage with panelists and ask questions about HIV/AIDS and the launch of the campaign. One audience member asked Keys: “What do you hope will come out of this campaign?”“I want HIV to become something we talk about often and openly. I want it to be something that’s not awkward. I want the next generation of kids to grow up and wonder why it ever was,” she responded.Keys is also leading the EMPOWERED Community Grants program, administered by AIDS United, to give up to $25,000 grants to community-level projects that focus on women and HIV. She is co-founder and Global Ambassador of Keep a Child Alive, which provides AIDS treatment, food and other support to children and families affected by HIV and AIDS in Africa and India.For more information about the EMPOWERED campaign, visit www.greaterthan.org/campaign/empowered.Source:PR Newswirelast_img read more

NEXT STOP FOR MONTREAL COMEDIAN AND PROVOCATEUR SUGAR SAMMY IS AMERICA

first_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Montreal-born Sugar Sammy (Samir Khullar), one of Canada’s most popular comics, has performed all over the world and lives part-time in France. (BILL O’LEARY / THE WASHINGTON POST) Advertisement He thinks aloud — victim? suffer? — then resorts to his iPhone before it finally comes to him: “Subjected!”“I have observed, I’ve listened and I have been subjected to you for the last two years,” he continues. “So that creates something that’s not going to go unnoticed.” Facebookcenter_img Comedian Sugar Sammy is trying to describe how he can move to a new country and figure out enough of the local quirks to poke fun at them.“The French will say, ‘How do you know us so well?’” he says in an interview in Washington, D.C. “I’m like, ‘Because I’ve watched you, I have listened to you. I’ve been, I’ve been …” and he pauses.The Montreal-born comedian performs in four languages and currently he cannot summon the English word for what he wants to express. “That’s the only drawback of being bilingual: Sometimes you’ve got to look for the word if it comes to you in French first.” Advertisement Login/Register With: Twitterlast_img read more

Trumps blow to Obamacare jolts health consumers politics

first_imgWASHINGTON – President Donald Trump’s abrupt move to cut off federal payments to insurers jolted America’s health care and political worlds alike on Friday, threatening to boost premiums for millions, disrupt insurance markets and shove Republicans into a renewed civil war over their efforts to shred “Obamacare.”Defiant Democrats, convinced they have important leverage, promised to press for a bipartisan deal to restore the money by year’s end. That drive could split the GOP. On one side: pragmatists seeking to avoid political damage from hurting consumers. On the other: conservatives demanding a major weakening of the Affordable Care Act as the price for returning the money.“The American people will know exactly where to place the blame,” declared Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., all but daring Trump to aggravate what could be a major issue in the 2018 congressional elections.The money goes to companies for lowering out-of-pocket costs like co-payments and deductibles for low- and middle-income customers. It will cost about $7 billion this year and help more than 6 million people.Ending the payments would affect insurers because President Barack Obama’s law requires them to reduce their poorer customers’ costs. Carriers are likely to recoup the lost money by increasing 2018 premiums for people buying their own health insurance policies.The National Association of Insurance Commissioners estimates that Trump’s move would produce a 12 per cent to 15 per cent upsurge in premiums, while the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has put the figure at 20 per cent. That’s on top of premium increases from growing medical costs.Experts say the political instability over Trump’s effort to undermine Obama’s health care law could also prompt more insurers to leave markets. As Trump frequently points out, next year about half of U.S. counties will have only one insurer on “Obamacare’s” online marketplaces, up from the one-third of counties with one carrier in 2017.Trump relished his latest blow against the law that he pledged to repeal during his presidential campaign, only to see the effort crash in the GOP-run Senate this summer. He’s long derided the subsidies as bailouts to insurers, even though the payments and the cost reductions for consumers are required by law.The scrapping of subsidies would affect millions more consumers in states won by Trump last year, including Florida, Alabama and Mississippi, than in states won by Democrat Hillary Clinton. Nearly 70 per cent of the 6 million who benefit from the cost-sharing subsidies are in states that voted for the Republican.“Congress, they forgot what their pledges were,” Trump told conservative activists at the Values Voter Summit, recalling GOP candidates’ repeated vows to repeal Obama’s law. “So we’re going a little different route. But you know what? In the end, it’s going to be just as effective, and maybe it will even be better.”On Twitter Friday night, he wrote: “Money pouring into Insurance Companies profits, under the guise of ObamaCare, is over. They have made a fortune. Dems must get smart & deal!”Trump’s move was hailed by conservative groups including Heritage Action for America and Freedom Partners, backed by the Koch brothers.But rallying against it were medical and consumer groups including the American Heart Association, the American College of Physicians and insurance industry behemoths America’s Health Insurance Plans and Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.Nineteen Democratic state attorneys general are suing Trump over the stoppage. Attorneys generals from California, Kentucky, Massachusetts and New York were among those who filed the lawsuit in federal court in California to stop Trump’s attempt “to gut the health and well-being of our country.”A federal judge has found that Congress never properly approved the payments. The subsidies have continued under Obama and Trump until now, despite prior Trump threats to block them.Schumer told reporters that Trump’s “threats and bullying are not going to work.” He said he saw a good chance of forcing money for the cost sharing reductions into a massive spending bill Congress is expected to approve late this year.Democrats think Trump would have little clout to block a bipartisan deal, citing support for the payments by some Republicans and polls showing the public would fault the GOP for any failure. Some Republicans privately agree.“Now, President Trump has his fingerprints all over the knife,” said Maryland Sen. Chris Van Hollen, who heads Senate Democrats’ campaign committee.In a survey released Friday by the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation, 7 in 10 said the administration should help Obama’s law work, not undermine it, including nearly half of Republicans. The same group conducted an August poll showing 6 in 10 people would blame Trump and the GOP for future health care woes.Sens. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., have been seeking a deal that Alexander said in a recent interview would reinstate the payments for two years. He said in exchange, Republicans want “meaningful flexibility for states” to offer lower-cost insurance policies with less coverage than Obama’s law mandates.Republicans are divided over that effort.Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., who leads the conservative House Freedom Caucus, said in an interview that he’s willing to back the payments if they’re “part of a transition from Obamacare to something else” with greater state flexibility than Alexander and Murray are discussing. Another conservative leader, Rep. Mark Walker, R-N.C., said the payments should be revived “under no circumstance.”Some GOP leaders have expressed openness to continuing the payments, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who’s said he wants them accompanied by significant changes. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, said this summer that the payments should be continued, citing their impact on premiums.Moderates like Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said Friday that halting the payments would make insurance costs “unaffordable for some people.” Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., tweeted that the cuts “will mean more uninsured in my district.”___AP reporters Ken Thomas and Jill Colvin contributed.last_img read more

Peace Gallery North presents Artists Choice art exhibit

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Flying Colours Artists’ Association is highlighting their ‘Artists Choice’ at the Peace Gallery North, opening night for the Exhibit is Friday, January 4th, 2019.This Exhibit will feature approximately 15 artists showcasing their chosen work to create an eclectic and interesting display of varying mediums and styles. Most of the art being displayed is available for purchase and you will experience varying local art from Pottery to Watercolour.Opening night starts at 7 pm and runs until 9 pm, there will be light refreshments and live entertainment. The ‘Artists Choice’ Exhibit runs until January 24th, 2019 The Flying Colours Artists’ Association is a diverse group of visual artists from the North Peace Region. The Association has been around for 10 years and is always welcoming new members, as the membership includes a diverse and interesting variety of media, subject, and style.The organization aims to provide support and educational opportunities to their community of practicing artists through the sponsorship of adult art workshops, artists’ retreats and mentoring.To find out more about the Flying Colours Artists Association CLICK HERElast_img read more

‘139 FIRs and DD entries against political parties’

first_imgNEW DELHI: As many as 139 FIRs and daily diary (DD) entries have been registered till date against various political parties and others for violation of the model code of conduct in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls, the poll body in Delhi said on Wednesday. The statistics surveillance team of Delhi’s Chief electoral office constituted to keep an eye on the expenses of political parties, has seized Rs 1.38 crore in cash and also seized 266.318 kg of narcotics and drugs. “A total of 139 FIRs or DD entries have been lodged till date in connection with the violation of the model code of conduct,” Delhi EO Ranbir Singh told reporter Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”Out of these, 15 are against the Aam Aadmi Party(eight FIRs and seven DD entries), 19 against the Bhartiya Janata Party (nine FIRs and four DD entries), four against the Congress (all DD entries), one against the Bahujan Samaj Party (one DD entry), Samajwadi Party (one DD entry), and 95 against others or non-political (entities),” the CEO office said. The office of the Delhi CEO said more than 2.87 lakh posters, banners and hoardings have been removed since the poll code came into force. “As many as 29,3809 posters, banners and hoardings were removed from all over Delhi, out of which 30533 aree removed from the New Delhi Municipal Council, 43,075 from East Delhi Municipal Corporation areas, 2,411 from Delhi Cantonment Board, 11 8456 from South Delhi Municipal Corporation, and 99,334 from North Delhi Municipal Corporation areas,” the statement said.last_img read more