Mohawk wrestlers Dad Bod Squad latest from their community to jump in

first_img(Dad bod Squad Kyle Zachary, left, with Shawn Rice. Photo: Tom Fennario/APTN)This is a regular Saturday night at Beauharnois Championship Wrestling [BCW], based forty-five minutes southwest of Montreal.At $10 a head ($5 for kids) it’s mostly a labour of love for organizers and performers.That applies to promoter Loïc Lessard Paquette, who says wrestling is nothing less than an art form.“It’s a piece of theatre, each wrestling match is a play, so the director decides the story, the wrestlers play the parts, so a wrestling match, at its core, it’s really about telling a story,” explained Lessard Paquette in French “It’s like a dance.”Another essential element to good wrestling: characters.“Yeah, we’re the old dudes, we’re out of shape, we’re dads, we’re like in the twilight of our careers pretty much,” said Rice, pointing to his torso “dad bod, you know we got the dad bods going on, kind of makes sense.”“We’re called the Dad Bod Squad because you look at these guys back here,” said Zachary gesturing to a group of wrestlers warming up in the ring “they’re chipper, they’re bright eyed, they’re bushy tailed, and they’re ready to take on the world, we can’t keep up with that kind of youthful enthusiasm.”But what The Dad Bod Squad lacks in energy or abdominal muscles, they make up for in craftiness.Their motto “work smarter, not harder” speaks to how they’ve been known to delve into the dark arts of wrestling.“You watch some of these guys, they’re doing backflips and somersaults all over the place, the way we keep up with them is give ’em a quick poke in the eyes,” explained ZacharyZachary and Rice might be playing up the dad angle, but you could also call them the comeback kids.They returned to the ring only a few months ago, after over a decade off.This coming weekend they’ll be making their US debut in New Jersey at a nearly week long independent circuit showcase.“Every promotion from the world, not just from North America, but the world. Like even Japan and Mexico, they’re all having shows in the same place so it’s a big thing for everybody in pro wrestling,” said Rice.But the Dad Bod Squad aren’t the first Mohawk wrestlers from Kahnawà:ke to make a name for themselves.Long-time fans of pro wrestling will know Billy Two Rivers.He wrestled for 24 years all over the world mainly in the US, U.K, and Asia.He never once played a villain.“No, I didn’t have a choice, they loved me,” said Two Rivers with a laugh.Ever the showman, the 83 year old agreed to meet with APTN even though he’s in the hospital rehabbing a back injury.When asked to describe his first match in 1953 – Two Rivers guffawed.“The first one was a laugh on me.”Two Rivers always entered the ring by vaulting over the top ropes.Aside from being flashy, it was a way to avoid getting his famous headdress stuck between the ropes on entry.But nerves got the best of him during his first match ever in Detroit.“My first time there, my knees were knocking. So I went, I got up on the apron on the ring, I grabbed the top two ropes, and I vaulted. I was so nervous, as I was clearing it my toe caught the top rope. And you ever see a chicken fall into a ring? There I was on the mat in a pile of feathers. Well, I never lived that down for about ten years,” said Two Rivers.(Billy Two Rivers holds a picture of himself and his patented entry into the wrestling ring. Photo: Tom Fennario/APTN)Having a wrestling legend in the community certainly served as inspiration for Zachary long before he had a dad bod.“When I first got into the industry I sat with Billy and we talked and we developed this bond that only you can grow with other wrestlers,” said Zachary.Despite giving the appearance of blood enemies in the ring, out of the ring the wrestling community is close knit.Injuries can happen easily in the ring, so it’s important to have the trust of your combatants.But on this night in Beauharnois, that bond between wrestlers only goes so far.Especially when the opportunity for revenge appears.After the sour end to their own match, the squad waited until Cayen and Cable, the team that ambushed them, were near victory before staging a perfectly timed distraction to steal the match out from under them.“I mean, it’s tit for tat, right? Dutch door action. You screw us, we’re going to screw you right back. It’s simple, simple mathematics,” Zachary explained, before Rice interjected “I’m terrible at math.”Perhaps mathematics is a poor analogy.To call it poetry would be a stretch.But great theatre? The roar of the Beauharnois crowd says that’s a fit.tfennario@aptn.ca@tfennario That’s the way Kahnawà:ke’s Dad Bod Squad likes it.“We’re gonna come out here and put on a great show for these great fans at BCW [Beauharnois Championships Wrestling], and we’re going to kick some butt at the same time,” affirmed Dad Bod Squad’s Shawn Rice.Their match against the Mascouche Dynasty, obnoxious oil millionaires from the Montreal suburbs, turned quickly on a double DDT delivered by the squad’s other member, Kyle Zachary.Then after getting tagged in, Rice entered the ring in a fury, nearly completing the job.But the nefarious interference of another tag team, Cayen and Cable, distracted the referee, leaving the Dynasty to pull off a brutal low blow on Rice before pinning him to mat.It was a tough loss, one that lead to The Dad Bod Squad vowing revenge.“You stick your nose in our business, we’re gonna have to flatten it!” exclaimed Zachary in post match exclusive with APTN News. Tom FennarioAPTN NewsIn the wrestling ring fortunes can change in a flash.One moment, you’re taking a beating, struggling, and failing to tag in your partner.The next, an opportunity can present itself, waiting to be seized.It could be a chance to pull off a reverse suplex…duck under a clothesline…or use a hapless referee to block an opponent’s blow.The momentum swings are fast and frequent, lending the sport a drama like no other.last_img read more

EC applies brakes on Modi biopic Namo TV

first_imgNEW DELHI: The Election Commission Wednesday banned the screening of the biopic on Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the poll period, saying any such film that subserves the purpose of any political entity or individual should not be displayed in the electronic media.The EC order came a day before the movie was to be released. The first phase of Lok Sabha elections starts Thursday. The Supreme Court Tuesday dismissed a petition filed by a Congress activist seeking a stay on the release of the biopic and said the Election Commission would be an “appropriate” place to find the redressal. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsThe apex court said it was not entertaining the petition for the stay on the release of the film as it was “premature” since the movie is yet to be certified by the Censor Board. It said even if the film is released on April 11, as claimed by the Congress activist, it will be appropriate for him to seek redressal from the Election Commission. The plea had sought postponement of the biopic’s release till the completion of the coming Lok Sabha polls, alleging that it was designed to “manipulate, influence and impress viewers and voters”. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayIn another setback, NaMo TV, the 24-hour channel promoting Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP can’t be on air while the code of conduct is in place, Election Commission sources have said, referring to the panel’s order stopping the release of a biopic on the Prime Minister. The channel had mysteriously surfaced on satellite TV networks late last month, drawing protests from the opposition. The opposition, which had complained to the Election Commission about the channel, welcomed the development. “We are happy that they (Election Commission) have redeemed their image as a vital policeman. The Supreme Court also had also said it was up to the Election Commission to decide such things,” Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said. The BJP, however, maintained that the channel was ot in violation of the election code. “I don’t think it is a setback for the government. I don’t think the Election Commission found any illegality in the law. It was just showing the achievements of the government and the Prime Minister. It was a positive information initiative. We will be looking at alternatives,” Vivek Reddy of the BJP said. But Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) complained to the Election Commission against the channel saying it violated the model code of conduct that came into effect on March 10 after the Election Commission announced seven-phase elections from April 11 to May 19. Counting of votes will take place on May 23.last_img read more

King Mohammed VI receives phone call from French President

first_imgRabat – King Mohammed VI, has received a phone call from Mr. François Hollande, President of the French Republic, said a statement from the Royal Cabinet. “During the meeting, the two leaders discussed the current context of Moroccan-French relations following thedevelopments in recent days,” the statement said.“In light of the clarifications in this regard, the two leaders agreed to continue contacts in the coming days between the twogovernments, and work in the spirit of exceptional relations that bind Morocco and France, “the statement concluded.last_img

Maroc Telecom 4G Successfully Tested

Rabat – Maroc Telecom, Morocco’s main telecommunication company in, has successfully tested 4G with the establishment of a pilot site and the results are “very convincing.”The company said that the pilot site “gives us a preview of volumes that will be available to users with the speed measured at over 140 mbps.”Rabat is the first city in which the pilot site 4G- LTE (Long Term Evolution) was deployed and the service will soon expand into other cities. Currently, the operator offers customers 3G + with speeds up to 42 mbps; however, with 4G, the Internet speeds are estimated to be more than 140 mbps.The high-speed service is expected to launch once the company obtains the marketing licenses of 4G from the Telecommunications Regulatory National Agency (ANRT).

Canada has contingency plan for fiscal cliff eurozone crisis Flaherty

TORONTO — Canada has a contingency plan should the United States not reach an agreement with respect to a series of tax hikes and spending cuts set to kick in next year or if the eurozone’s debt crisis worsens, finance minister Jim Flaherty said on Tuesday.“I can assure you, we have contingency plans. This is not a new subject for us. We have been concerned about this subject for many months. And we prepare. So we have contingency plans not only with respect to the fiscal cliff, but with respect to the European situation were that to unravel in a disorderly way,” Flaherty told a news conference in Fredericton, New Brunswick.Flaherty’s comments follow his warning last week that a failure by U.S. politicians to reach a fiscal deal before Jan.1 will plunge the United States into a recession quickly, with Canada to follow shortly afterward.[np-related]“Were the entire fiscal cliff risk to become reality, the effect on U.S. GDP, according to the Americans themselves, would be 4 to 5%, which would put the U.S. economy into recession quite quickly and the Canadian would follow shortly thereafter,” Flaherty told reporters in Ottawa last Wednesday.“We’re all concerned that it’s an immediate problem within the next 60 days that needs to be dealt with.”Gridlock in Washington could prevent a deal to extend about US$600-billion in tax cuts and spending beyond Dec. 31.There are estimates that going over this fiscal cliff would reduce U.S. gross domestic product by about four or five percentage points.Flaherty said finding compromise won’t be easy for American politicians, but he pointed out that the Harper government was able govern for five years as a minority, so it can be done.With files from the Canadian Press© Thomson Reuters 2012 read more

Striking workers question whether UAW leaders can be trusted

ROMULUS, Mich. — The strike against General Motors by the United Auto Workers is playing out amid a corruption scandal inside the UAW that has caused distrust of the union leadership among many rank-and-file members.On picket lines at plants across the country, many of the 49,000 workers have expressed doubts about whether leaders are acting in their best interests.Some have gone so far as to wonder whether the leadership took them out on strike to show that the union is working for them.Last month, the FBI raided the suburban Detroit home of the UAW president. He has not been charged. Earlier this month, a union official in Missouri was charged in a $600,000 embezzlement scheme, and another leader pleaded guilty to taking kickbacks.The UAW, in its defence, says union members authorized the walkout.Tom Krisher And Mike Householder, The Associated Press read more

Kitayama opens 2shot lead at Mauritius Open

BEAU CHAMP, Mauritius — Kurt Kitayama opened a two-shot lead halfway through the Mauritius Open with a second successive 65 on Friday.Kitayama moved to 14-under-par overall and ahead of co-overnight leader Chikkarangappa S (68), who was alone in second.Victor Perez (69), who shared the lead with Chikkarangappa after the first round, was tied for third, with fellow Frenchman Matthieu Pavon (66) a shot further back on 11 under.Kitayama, who came through qualifying school to join the European Tour for the new 2019 season, made nine birdies. His only slip was a double-bogey seven on No. 2 at the Ernie Els-designed Four Seasons Golf Course.The American responded to that disappointment, his only dropped shots of the opening two rounds, with a run of four straight birdies to get back on track.Four-time major winner Els carded a 2-under 70 and was tied for 25th at 5 under overall.The Mauritius Open is co-sanctioned by the European, Asian and South African tours.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsThe Associated Press read more

Half of wouldbe soldiers drop out of recruitment process because it takes

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Half of would-be soldiers are dropping out of the process because it is taking up to a year to be recruited, a National Audit Office report has found. The British Army has failed to meet recruitment targets as it “underestimated the complexity of what it was trying to achieve” when it outsourced recruiting to the services company Capita, the report says. Capita won the £495m contract for Army recruitment in 2012, but the Army has not recruited the number of soldiers that it requires in any year since the contract began.A report by the National Audit Office (NAO), published on Friday, found there were “significant problems” with the British Army Recruiting Partnering Project.These included an online recruitment system that was planned for launch in July 2013 but launched 52 months late at a cost of £113m – triple the original budget.Capita has consistently missed the Army’s recruitment targets, with the total shortfall ranging from 21 per cent to 45 per cent of the Army’s requirement, the report said.The Commons Defence Committee was told in  October the Army has 77,000 fully trained troops compared with a target of 82,500.The Army and Capita have introduced some “significant changes” in the last year, but none have resulted in enough soldiers being recruited, according to the NAO.The report found that it took up to 321 days for new recruits to go from starting an application to beginning basic training, and that many drop out of the process while waiting A total of 47 per cent of applicants dropped out of the process voluntarily in 2017-18, and both the Army and Capita believe the length of the process is a significant factor in this, the report said.The Army estimates there were 13,000 fewer applications between November 2017 and March 2018 than in the same period the previous year, the report said.The NAO found that neither the Army nor Capita tested changes to the recruitment process before it was introduced and the number of local recruitment centres was cut from 131 to 68 to save costs.It said the project will not achieve its planned savings of £267m for the Ministry of Defence.  Capita’s 10-year contract will end in 2022.Gavin Williamson, the Defence Secretary, said in a recent Commons Defence Committee heading that he would show “no timidity” in cancelling the contract if Capita’s perdirmance didn’t improve. “The army is gradually disappearing before your eyes,” Mark Francois, a member of the committee, told the Secretary of State, “and it’s happening on your watch”.He added: “You have to do something about it.”  Madeleine Moon, another committee member agreed. “We are not doing the best for the people serving this country,” she said. A Capita spokesperson said: “As the NAO report states, both Capita and the Army underestimated the complexity of this project.”Our focus is now on working with the Army to deliver a recruitment process fit for the 21st century.”We have overhauled governance on the contract and are already seeing improvements, with applications at a five-year high and a reduction in the amount of time it takes candidates to join the Army.”We are absolutely committed to getting this partnership right.”General Sir Nick Carter, the Chief of the Defence Staff, recently said he was confident Capita would hit their annual recruiting figure “before the end of the contract”. However, he declined to say in which of the remaining four years of the contract this target would be reached.  read more

Volvo Penta continues cooperation with Sandvik and gets MSHACANMET certification

first_imgWith rapid advances in technology and emission legislation, not only the choice of technology but also the choice of engine supplier has become an important issue for equipment manufacturers for the construction industry. In 2011, Volvo Penta and Sandvik Mining and Construction signed a cooperation agreement with the goal to enhance the long-term competitiveness of Sandvik’s products. To date, Sandvik has introduced Volvo Penta engines in several models from its product lines for crushers, drilling rigs, loaders and haulers. “Volvo Penta has been receptive to our requirements during the development and we are pleased with the engineering support they provide us”, says Chris Jobburn, Senior Product Support Engineer at Sandvik Construction.Installing after-treatment systems have proven to be a major issue for many equipment builders in the US and the EU. For Sandvik engineers, the SCR technology has not been a major challenge: “This is just another regular engine installation”, commented Seppo Karhu, Manager for Engine Installations at Sandvik Mining, after the first-ever loader with SCR for mining and tunnelling applications had been developed. “With the SCR technology, ventilation rates become so low that it is no longer toxic emissions, but CO2 or fuel consumption that sets the limits. And the Volvo engines have low fuel consumption”, says Olli Koivisto, Global Product Line Manager for Load and Haul at Sandvik Mining.In 2011, Volvo Penta was one of the first diesel engine manufacturers to receive stage 3B and Tier 4i certificates for its entire engine line-up. For many years these engines have been successfully proven for use in the demanding underground mining segment. Now, the same engines are also certified by MSHA and CANMET. Volvo Penta has received Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) as well as CANMET-MMSL certification for its 13L interim Tier 4 diesel engines. The 13L is the first engine to receive the certification. The 350-550 hp, TAD1360 / 61 / 62 / 63 / 64 / 65VE-series of diesel engines offers ventilation rates that are among the lowest in the industry for the given power category. The ventilation rate is around 30 CFM/hp which is considerably lower than traditional diesel engines used in mines today.last_img read more

BM Valladolid to sign Serbian left back Milos Pesic

9Juanfersa Grupo Fegar11 One of the best teams in Spain in the last decade, former EHF Champions League semi-finalist, BM Valladolid find a new reinforcement in Serbia, writes zurnal.rs. Experienced left back Milos Pesic (31) will join the Spanish squad who are struggling in the relegation battle this season in ASOBAL. Pesic has played in RK Crvena zvezda Beograd, his first proffesional team, but financial situation there forced him to left the team in the middle of the season. BM Valladolid is currently on the 13th place in ASOBAL…Pesic has ASOBAL experience with Huesca, Toledo, Alkobendas, Algeciras…STANDINGS: ← Previous Story WWCH 2013 in Serbia – SCHEDULE Next Story → STRONG KIF KOLDING: Hvidt and Jorgensen extend contracts! 16Bidasoa Irún4 4Reale Ademar León14 7Helvetia Anaitasuna11 15Villa de Aranda Top Ribera5 10Fertiberia Puerto Sagunto10 6Frigoríficos Morrazo Cangas13 BM Valladolidmilos pesic 3Naturhouse La Rioja16 13Cuatro Rayas Valladolid6 8BM Guadalajara11 5Fraikin BM Granollers14 14Ángel Ximénez Puente Genil6 2BM. Huesca17 11BM. Aragón9 PHOTO: RK CRVENA ZVEZDA 1FC Barcelona24 12Globalcaja C. Encantada7 read more

Noel Curran to be RTÉs Director General for another four years

first_imgNOEL CURRAN IS to be the Director General for RTÉ for another four years, it was confirmed today.The Minister for Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, Pat Rabbitte TD, said that Curran’s performance “has been of the highest standard”.The Government approved the appointment of Curran as Director General of RTÉ for a further four years today, and Rabbitte noted that he has” demonstrated great leadership in his initial term, during which RTÉ has been operating in a very difficult economic environment, facing increased competition and commercial challenges”.He said that Curran’s reappointment “will be of great benefit to both the organisation and its staff”.During his first three years in the role, Curran oversaw many changes at RTÉ.These include a radical restructuring programme and the introduction of the digital free-to-air service, Saorview.The Director General acts as RTÉ’s Chief Executive Office and Editor in Chief. Curran is a Co Monaghan native and was first appointed Director General of RTÉ in November 2010, with effect from February 2011.He had left RTÉ in March 2010 but came back when given the Director General role.Read: Jim Jennings appointed as new MD of RTÉ Radio>Read: RTE stars paid “too much” says station boss>last_img read more

Unreal Engine 4 now officially supports Oculus Rift

first_imgA new round of console hardware combined with the always shifting state of PC components means the existing popular game engines are starting to get a bit long in the tooth. That’s why we’re seeing companies like Crytek and Epic Games are pushing their next-gen engines.This week, Epic has made using Unreal Engine 4 look even more desirable by announcing it has integrated with 13 different pieces of gaming middleware. Such middleware makes game development easier, faster, and allows features to be used that would otherwise take too long or cost too much to implement in-house. But for UE4 there’s one brand new middleware addition that’s sure to get gamers (and developers) excited.Epic will now include support for the Oculus Rift headset as standard within the Unreal Engine. That means if a game developer wants to support use of the headset in a game, they now have the tools to do so included with the engine.With Epic’s engine being so popular for the difficult last generation of console hardware, it seems likely most of those dev teams will carry on using it and make the upgrade to version 4. That bodes well for Oculus Rift, which could potentially have hundreds of games shipping with built-in support. And let’s not forget the Unreal Engine is going to be popular for first-person shooters–the perfect type of game for Oculus Rift use.If you’re wondering what Unreal Engine 4 is capable of in terms of visuals, there’s the Infiltrator video to watch. Epic also released an Elemental demo showing the engine running on PS4 earlier this year, which you can watch below.Next week when E3 kicks off we’re sure to get a better idea of what the engine is capable of as both Sony and Microsoft roll out their PS4 and Xbox One games, some of which will surely be using it.last_img read more

Press Talk The MM boys and The Godfather

first_img‘It’s not personal, Sonny. It’s strictly business.”There are many lessons to be learned from the movie “The Godfather.”And “It’s strictly business” was a lesson often repeated in “The Godfather” trilogy.In the above scene, Don Corleone had just been shot, and his son — Michael — had just been badly beaten by a crooked cop.Michael — who early on wanted nothing to do with the family business — was proposing that he meet with the crooked cop … and kill him.Michael’s brother, Sonny, cautioned him to not take this personally.That’s when Michael delivered his “It’s strictly business” line.What’s the point here?Sonny — the hothead of the family — understood one should never make a decision based on anything but business.Allowing a personal view into the equation makes you do stupid stuff.And, of course, that brings me to — you guessed it — the M&M boys. And their sidekick, Republican state Sen. and county Environmental Services Director Don Benton.o o o Although I’ve seen lots of stupid stuff done by many politicians, our Don’t Do Stupid Stuff mugs were created with Republican Commissioners David Madore and Tom Mielke in mind. And, of course, Benton.It appears these three caballeros have never learned “The Godfather’s” lesson. Don’t make decisions for personal reasons. It gets you in trouble.These guys don’t like The Columbian — me, in particular — because we hold them accountable for their actions. But instead of learning from that, they look only for payback.last_img read more

South Florida hospitals welcome first newborns of 2018

first_imgMeanwhile, at Broward Health Medical Center, Natali Lin Crespo also made this new year a little more special. She became the second baby born in Broward in 2018.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. MIAMI (WSVN) – South Florida hospitals rang in the new year with their first newborns of 2018.In Miami-Dade, Francesca Garcia became the first baby born in the county at South Miami Hospital this year.She weighed in at eight pounds, five ounces and her mom, Jessica, said the first thing she has to do is, “Introduce her to her furry siblings.”Francesca’s grandmother, Odalis Garcia, said she is excited to meet the little one. “We were expecting her on the 26th. That was the due date, but she came yesterday, and she became the first baby in Miami-Dade,” she said. “We are excited about it and very happy.”Over in Broward County, the first baby born in 2018 was Brendan Jorge at 12:05 a.m.“He’s eight pounds, two ounces, 20 and a half inches, so close to his older brother,” said the newborn’s mother.Brendan was actually due the day before. “Even this last visit, we were wishy-washy whether or not we were gonna go home,” said Wayne Francisco, the baby’s father, “but when they examined her, she was pretty far along and it became very real.” last_img read more

Domestic Car Sales up 139 Percent in February

first_imgCar sales in India surged 1.39 percent, an industry board said on Monday.Automakers sold 1,60,718 units of cars in India last month, up 1.39 percent from the 1,58,512 units in February 2013, PTI quoted the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) data.The sales of motorcycles rose 5.39 percent to 8,43,307 units (from 8,00,165 units), while the commercial vehicles posted a decline of 29.84 percent to 47,982 units in February.The surge in the car sales have been attributed to the price cut announced by the car manufacturers, following the excise duty reduction pronounced in the interim budget 2014-15. As per the latest budget, the excise duty of small cars, motorcycles, scooters and commercial vehicles in India has been cut down to 8 percent from 12 percent, while the excise duty of Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) has gone down to 24 percent from 30 percent.In February, carmakers like Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai and Honda have registered a surge in domestic car sales.Maruti, India’s largest passenger carmaker, posted a 0.40 percent dip in total sales for the month of February. However, the domestic sales of the company rose to 99,758 units in February, when compared to the 97,955 units in the same month last year.Honda car India and Ford India marked double digit growth in the domestic market sales in February 2104. Ford India’s domestic sales were up 51.42 percent to 6,799 units in February as against the 4,490 units in the same corresponding month last year.Two-wheeler makers, Bajaj Auto recorded a decline of six percent in domestic sales for February 2014. The company sold a total of 273,323 motorcycles as against the 291,297 units last year. The Honda Motorcycles sales grew by 44 percent at 3,28,521 units for February 2014.last_img read more

Britain to launch EU exit process Wednesday

first_imgBritain’s Prime Minister Theresa May, signs the official letter to European Council President Donald Tusk, invoking Article 50 and signalling the United Kingdom’s intention to leave the EU, in the cabinet office inside 10 Downing Street. Photo: AFPBritain formally launches the process for leaving the European Union on Wednesday, a historic step that has divided the country and thrown into question the future of the European project.Just days after the EU’s 60th birthday, Britain is poised to become the first country ever to seek a divorce, striking a blow at the heart of the union forged from the ashes of World War II.Nine months since the shock British referendum vote to leave the EU, Prime Minister Theresa May will trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, meaning Britain is set to leave the EU in 2019.“We must no longer be defined by the votes we cast in the referendum-but a determination to make a success of the result,” May will tell MPs later on Wednesday, according to extracts of her speech released by her Downing Street office.“The triggering of Article 50 is the moment for the country to come together,” May will say, a day after Scotland’s parliament voted in favour of holding a fresh referendum on independence from Britain, in a bid to hold on to EU ties.May has already signed the Brexit letter to be delivered to EU president Donald Tusk on Wednesday.The two leaders spoke by phone on Tuesday ahead of the momentous event.Brussels and London face monumentally difficult negotiations over outstanding bills, immigration and future trade ties.The process has already split Britain, where 52 percent voted for Brexit last June, but 48 percent wanted to stay in the EU-including a majority in Scotland, which has renewed its threat to secede.On Tuesday, Scotland’s semi-autonomous parliament backed a call by its nationalist government for a new referendum on independence before Brexit.Scotland is particularly concerned about leaving Europe’s single market-the price May says must be paid to end mass migration, a key voter concern.The prime minister rebuffed the referendum request and has vowed to fight for a new relationship with Brussels that will leave Britain stronger and more united than before.The EU, too, is determined to preserve its own unity and has said that any Brexit deal must not encourage other countries to follow Britain out the door.Brexit ‘best thing’Britons are as divided as they were in the referendum.Tens of thousands of people marched through London on Saturday demanding Britain keep its 44-year-old EU membership, urging politicians to “stop this madness”.But many are elated after waiting years for this moment, including 66-year-old pensioner Christine Garrett who was out shopping at a street market in Bethnal Green in east London.“I think we could stand on our own two feet as a country. What do they do for us? Nothing,” she said.Pushing her pram nearby was Julia Rogers, 38, who disagreed saying: “It’s going to be a disaster”.In the City of London financial hub, employees were mostly worried about the implications of Brexit.“I think it’s quite a sorry state of affairs,” said Daniel Smith, 41, adding: “We’ve sort of backed ourselves into a corner that we can’t get out of”.Budget battlesThe EU is expected to issue a first response to Britain on Friday, followed by a summit of EU leaders on April 29 to adopt their own guidelines-meaning it could be weeks before formal talks start.Their priority is settling Britain’s outstanding obligations, estimated between 55 and 60 billion euros ($59 and $65 billion) — an early battle that could set the tone for the rest of the negotiations.Both sides have also said they are keen to resolve the status of more than three million European nationals living in Britain after Brexit, and one million British expats living in the EU.The two sides also want to ensure Brexit does not exacerbate tensions in Northern Ireland, the once troubled British province which will become the country’s only hard border with the rest of the EU.Britain also wants to reach a new free trade agreement within the two-year timeframe, although it has conceded that a transitional deal might be necessary to allow Britain to adapt to its new reality.Many business leaders are deeply uneasy about May’s decision to leave Europe’s single market, a free trade area of 500 million people, fearing its impact on jobs and economic growth.The Brexit vote sent the pound plunging, although economic growth has been largely stable since then.Walking awayWith the challenges ahead, there is a real chance that negotiations will break down and Britain will be forced out of the EU without any deal in place.This could be highly damaging for both sides, by erecting trade barriers where none now exist as well as creating huge legal uncertainty.May has said that “no deal is better than a bad deal”, and she has the support of pro-Brexit hardliners in her Conservative party, who have been campaigning for decades to leave the EU.While talk of walking away has softened as the negotiations loom, experts say it may be her only trump card in a process in which the ticking clock means the EU will hold most of the cards.“This marks the end of the period when our government was in control,” said Professor Anand Menon, director of the “UK in a Changing Europe” programme.last_img read more

Indonesia bans Trumps business partner

first_imgIndonesian authorities have imposed a travel ban on tycoon and politician Hary Tanoesoedibjo, who is building resorts to be managed by Trump hotels, over an investigation into allegations he threatened a prosecutor via a text message.Tanoesoedibjo has been given a 20-day overseas travel ban starting on June 22 based on a request by Indonesian police’s criminal investigation unit Agung Sampurno, a spokesman at the immigration directorate said on Wednesday.The Indonesian billionaire “is under investigation related to a violation of the information and electronic transactions law,” Sampurno said.Tanoesoedibjo, whose MNC Group controls businesses ranging from media to property, has been named a suspect for allegedly sending a threatening message to a prosecutor investigating a case involving Mobile 8, a telecommunications company previously owned by MNC Group.Tanoesoedibjo’s lawyer could not be reached on Wednesday but in an earlier statement dismissed the allegations. “The content of Hary Tanoesoedibjo’s SMS is general and idealistic and does not threaten anyone,” his lawyer Hotman Paris Hutapea said.Part of Tanoesoedibjo’s text message read: “If I am the leader of this country, then that’s where Indonesia will be changed and cleared of things that are not as they should be,” according to the statement from the lawyer.Tanoesoedijo has also denied the allegations in media reports. Breaching the law can carry a maximum jail term of four years and a maximum fine of 750 million rupiah ($56,000)The tycoon, who in the 2014 election ran as a candidate for vice president, founded his own a political party in 2015 and said in January he would decide before the end of next year whether to run in the 2019 presidential election.He described US president Donald Trump’s victory as inspiring for candidates with little political experience and attended Trump’s innauguration in Washington in January.His company is currently building two luxury resorts in the island of Bali and in West Java, which would be managed by Trump Hotel Collection.In an interview with Reuters ahead of Trump’s inauguration, Tanoesoedibjo dismissed concerns by ethics officials that Trump’s overseas business deals might be vulnerable to conflicts of interest.Tanoesoedibjo also said in February that while his relationship with the US president has been focused on business he could help ties between the nations “if needed”.Several leaders in Muslim-majority Indonesia have expressed concerns over Trump’s tough immigration stance.last_img read more

Sutton Honored as ACC Player of the Week

first_img LOUISVILLE, Ky. – University of Louisville junior forward Dwayne Sutton has been voted the ACC Men’s Basketball Player of the Week for Jan. 7-13 games.In a pair of road games for the Cardinals last week, Sutton produced double-doubles in both games while averaging 14.5 points, 10.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists.In Louisville’s 83-62 victory at No. 12 North Carolina, Sutton totaled a career-high 17 points, 10 rebounds, a career-best seven assists and four steals as Louisville had its widest margin of victory ever against an Associated Press-ranked team on the road.  Sutton became the first Louisville player in school history to have a double-double in points and rebounds combined with at least four steals and at least seven assists.Sutton had 12 points and 11 rebounds in an overtime loss at Pittsburgh last Wednesday, when he scored his 700th career point and pulled down his 500th career collegiate rebound.A starter in every game this year, Sutton has more than doubled his scoring average from last year — up from 4.3 to 10.0 this season — and his 6.6 rebounding average is 14th in the ACC.  He has already matched his three-point goals total from last season.  He averages a team-high 31.6 minutes per game (18th in the ACC).ACC weekly honors are determined by a vote of a 15-member media panel and are announced on Mondays throughout the regular season. Pitt’s Trey McGowens received ACC Freshman of the Week accolades for the second time, averaging 20.0 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.0 steals in two games. Louisville (11-5, 2-1 ACC), ranked 23rd in the NCAA’s NET rankings, returns home to the KFC Yum! Center on Wednesday to face Boston College at 7:05 p.m. ET.Print Friendly Version Story Linkslast_img read more

One dead 1 injured in bike accident at Malbazar

first_imgSiliguri: A youth lost his life in a bike accident near Babujoth area in Malbazar.Tuskar Sarkar, a 35-year-old man, was travelling with his friend Mithu Paul (32), the pillion rider, from Odlabari on a bike.The incident took place at around 9:30 pm on Thursday on the state road of Malbazar.Lying in a pool of blood, Sarkar and Paul were noticed by the locals of Dhumshiganra area and taken to Malbazar hospital.Paul was severely injured, while his friend Tuskar Sarkar was declared brought dead when taken to hospital, said a source. The police visited the accident spot and the hospital after being informed by the locals. The family members of the victims, residents of Millan Pally area near Gajoldoba, informed the police that the duo had travelled to Odlabari for some important work.Sarkar’s body had been sent for an autopsy while Paul is under treatment in the hospital at present. Police are trying to find out the exact reason behind the accident.last_img read more

Will This App Fundamentally Change the Way We Take Photos

first_imgThe app detects the “signal in the noise” Image credit: Vhoto Computer vision – which, in a nutshell, teaches machines how to adopt human vision – is most commonly used by military equipment and robots to analyze and understand images by scanning them for data.   Noah Heller, co-founder and CEO of Seattle-based Vhoto, is today launching an app for the iPhone and iPad that will use this exact same technology to satisfy the everday consumer’s needs for the perfect selfie or family picture. The app is free through the App Store in the U.S. and worldwide.Vhoto uses the power of video to capture the perfect photo by combining computer vision with machine learning, a tool that lets the application begin to understand user preferences. The app evaluates over 20 dimensions, including blur, contrast, action/movement, faces, smiles, novelty and user intent to automatically pick the best frames – or the perfect moment – from the video. Register Now » 4 min read Image credit: Vhoto For example, imagine a person standing in a forest filled with trees. Human eyes are instantly drawn to that person, and the brain understands that this is “the important data.” For years, military equipment has understood how to find the “signal in the noise” – or the person in the forest filled with trees. Vhoto applies techniques like this to detect the best moments during a video of up to 20 seconds (or an uploaded clip of up to two minutes from your iPhone 5), whether it’s a person walking into the frame-shot of a vast forest, or your best friend finally blowing out a cake at a birthday party.Related: 4 Companies Boosting Habits By Radically Changing Human BehaviorDisrupting photographyUp until the late 1800s, humans didn’t smile in photos because it took at least a whole minute of sitting absolutely still for a field camera to capture an image. Heller believes that with the emergence of Vhoto technology, the current act of smiling and posing for pictures will soon also become outdated.“This app lets life happen unscripted and allows users to pick the best photos later,” Heller says.At the core, Heller says Vhoto solves two fundamental problems with traditional mobile cameras: 1) hitting the button at the right second to get the perfect shot and 2) choosing between photo and video during life’s most precious moments. The Vhoto app saves both mediums to your phone.Related: Famed Photographer Predicts the Death of the Selfiecenter_img From gamer to glam shotsHeller got his start at Microsoft where he was in charge of social features like friends, messaging, etc. He then moved to video game publisher Activision as a product director, where he developed Call of Duty ELITE, a social network built around the hit game Call of Duty, with about 20 million subscribers. The entrepreneurial bug moved him to join Boston-based Atlas Venture as an entrepreneur in residence (EIR). There he met co-founder Hugh Crean, then CEO of airfare prediction site Faircast and Vhoto CTO Jay Bartot. To date, their venture has received $2.4 million in seed funding from Atlas and Polaris Partners.But Heller hopes Vhoto doesn’t become type casted as an app exclusively serving our contemporary selfie culture. He says many early adapters are parents who can now share with relatives their children’s cutest moments, such as when a kid finally looks directly at the camera and smiles. Artists and photographers can capture the most visually aesthetic snapshots. Sports players are able to capture the split-second their bat hits the ball.“When a new user tries Vhoto and captures an amazing moment, we know we have that user forever,” says Heller. “But if we see a user only keeps producing traditional plain portraits with our app, we know they don’t quite get it yet.”Related: Change Habits, Change Your Industry Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global May 1, 2014last_img read more