THE FREE SPEECH SILVER LINING IN THE BUDGET CLOUD

first_imgBy Phil KerpenThe massive omnibus package of tax and spending changes recently passed by Congress was mostly a defeat for free-market economics. It extended expensive giveaways for the wind and solar industries, allowed President Obama to fund his Paris climate agreement, funded the president’s aggressive regulatory agenda, and even green-lit his IMF reform.But the deal is actually a triumph in the single most important policy area: the First Amendment. And as long as we are free to speak and engage in the political process, we can come back and reverse course on the economic issues.A detailed analysis by the Center for Competitive Politics identified no less than seven free speech victories in the deal. They include a ban on anti-speech regulations from the Securities and Exchange Commission and a ban on a potential executive order that might seek to control the political speech of people who have contracts with the federal government — as well as many critical measures to rein in the IRS.In 2012, Democrats won a national election by turning the IRS into a political intimidation agency, systematically destroying the vitality of the tea party movement that delivered a conservative wave in 2010. Given the level of scrutiny the agency is now under as a consequence, you might think there was no way they could use the same playbook to tilt the playing field for 2016. But the IRS was actually poised to propose official rules that would have been facially neutral but would have had the effect of silencing precisely the same groups that were sidelined by targeting in 2012.This deal takes that risk off the table by expressly prohibiting such rules.The deal also includes a comprehensive package of IRS reforms authored by Rep. Peter Roskam of Illinois that enjoy broad support but that until now had failed many attempts to be attached to a legislative vehicle that would be signed by the president.That package includes a prohibition on IRS employees using private email address, as we know Lois Lerner and her coconspirators often did when orchestrating targeting, a mechanism for nonprofit groups to challenge IRS determinations in court so that they cannot be held indefinitely in limbo, and a provision requiring any IRS employee engaged in political targeting to be fired. (In the recent scandal nobody was: Even Lois Lerner was allowed to retire with her full pension.)Most significantly, Roskam’s reform package bans the IRS from trying to assess gift tax on contributions to nonprofit organizations, which they infamously attempted against conservative donors.In 2011, donors to conservative groups were told that despite decades of clear legal understanding and practice, they could be found liable for gift tax on their contributions. While the IRS never did impose such a tax, the threatening letters they sent likely had a chilling effect on contributions to conservative groups, which was the point.Taxing contributions to nonprofits would do nothing to advance the intended purpose of the gift tax — enforcing compliance with the federal estate tax — and would serve to dramatically diminish the ability of nonprofit groups to educate and mobilize citizens in the public policy process. Yet some liberal advocates continued to praise these abusive letters and even call for more of them to be issued.Now donors have an ironclad legal guarantee that their contributions to nonprofit groups will not be subject to threatening IRS audit letters and arbitrary taxation.The bottom line is that on a wide range of issues the omnibus deal is deeply disappointing, but the First Amendment provisions are an enormous silver lining because they mean activists will not be IRSed in 2016 the way they were in 2012. And that assures conservatives an honest opportunity to effectively engage the political process and come back to win on all the other issues.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

The Father Who Believes He’s a 6-Year-Old Girl

first_imgAfter 23 years of marriage and 7 kids, Stefonknee Wolscht realized she was a transgender woman. But the rejection from her family and friends left her feeling alone and suicidal. That was until the day she realized she could find love and acceptance as a six year old girl.SUMMARY:So, we have Bruce Jenner, woman of the year, the world’s most famous example of transgender identity.We have Rachel Dolezal, the white woman who identifies as black, a prominent example of being transracial.Then there’s Jewel Shuping, who blinded herself so her mind could be in harmony with her body. She is now a poster woman for being transabled.There’s also Gary Matthews, aka “Boomer,” who believes he’s a dog, apparently an example of being trans-species.Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

Man City beat Birmingham 4-1 in front of record FA Women’s Cup crowd at Wembley

first_imgCarli Lloyd delivered again on the big stage, as Manchester City Women swept aside Birmingham City Ladies 4-1 in the SSE Women’s FA Cup final.Almost five years on from netting a double in the London 2012 Olympic final at Wembley, where the United States were 2-1 winners over Japan, Lloyd was back at the stadium on Manchester City duty.And the reigning FIFA world player of the year headed the third goal in a rout of Birmingham, who were 3-0 behind at half-time and by then chasing a lost cause.Manchester City Women are the reigning Women’s Super League champions, the WSL Continental Tyres Cup holders, and now for the first time they are FA Cup winners.Their goals came from Lucy Bronze, who was outstanding at right-back, young midfielder Izzy Christiansen, Lloyd and Jill Scott, with the reply from Birmingham coming from Charlie Wellings.The showpiece of the women’s season was played in front of a crowd of 35,271 spectators, a record attendance for the final, as the dominant team in English women’s football got their hands on more silverware. Their celebrations were fittingly joyous at the final whistle.Nikita Parris and Megan Campbell threatened early on as Nick Cushing’s side applied immediate pressure on Birmingham, and the opening goal that had been coming arrived in the 18th minute.Bronze got it, diving in boldly to head home Campbell’s inswinging free-kick, which was delivered with pace to the edge of the six-yard box from just inside the right touchline.The England full-back was at the heart of the second Manchester City goal in the 25th minute too, breaking up a Birmingham attack and making ground down the right with the poise of a winger, before her cross found Christiansen who rifled home a powerful half-volley.Lloyd was being overshadowed, a rare occurrence on the big stage, but that did not last long.She almost teed up a third goal for Melissa Lawley on the half-hour. Lawley, tearing in from the left, was denied by a fine stop from Ann-Katrin Berger.And then Lloyd had her moment in the 32nd minute, rising above team-mate and captain Steph Houghton at the far post to head in another Campbell cross, this one from the left and curling away from Berger’s reach – just perfect for the American who connected well and sprinted away in delight.Her three-month stint with City is almost up, but this match provided the 34-year-old with memories to last a lifetime.Parris threatened after the break when a winding run from the winger finished in a shot that was blocked behind for a corner. Berger then did well to deny Parris who threatened again to pile on the pain for Birmingham.At the other end, Ellen White belatedly tested Karen Bardsley in the Manchester City goal, but the striker’s 25-yard shot lacked the zip required.Houghton sent a free-kick high over the bar and a header well wide, before Birmingham grabbed a 73rd-minute lifeline when substitute Wellings unleashed a powerful left-footed strike that darted out of Bardsley’s reach.The three-goal margin was soon restored though, Scott driving into the top left corner from 15 yards. There could have been more goals in the closing stages but Manchester City had already done more than enough. 1 Manchester City Women celebrate at Wembley Stadium last_img read more

Piston Engine Joins Rotary Engine in Cells

first_imgThe rotary engine ATP synthase has been discussed frequently in these pages (e.g., 12/22/2003, 08/10/2004, 08/04/2010) as an exquisite “molecular machine” that produces the cell’s energy pellets (ATP) with a rotary, turbine-like mechanism.  Now, a piston-driven engine has been found at work in every cell’s energy factory.    ATP synthase operates at the end of a sequence of machines in the respiratory chain that generates chemical energy (in the form of ATP) from the food we eat (or from sunlight, in the case of plants).  The enzyme runs on proton motive force – a flow of protons that drive its carousel-like rotor.  But how does the proton gradient get established?  That’s the job of Respiratory Complex I, the first machine (enzyme) in the chain.  Complex I takes electrons from food, stored in NADH molecules, and transfers them down a chain of electron receptors to parts of the machine that pump protons across the mitochondrial membrane into the periplasm, setting up a proton gradient.  It now becomes evident that Complex I includes parts that move like pistons.    Complex I was reported in a July Science Express paper as having a railroad-like coupling rod (see 07/06/2010).  This week, The Scientist described it as “A piston proton pump,” referencing a paper from Nature last May:1  Richard P. Grant reported, The mechanism proposed by Leonid Sazanov’s group at the Medical Research Council in Cambridge is “almost completely unexpected,” says Faculty Member Thomas Meier.  Unlike the ATP synthase, which “drives protons across the membrane in a rotary turbine-like motion,” writes Faculty member Nathan Nelson in his review, the transfer of electrons from NADH cause a slight widening of one part of the complex, forcing the long helix to move like the a [sic] row of pistons that shove protons across the membrane.Some scientists feel this important finding will rival the excitement about the discovery that a rotary engine produces ATP.  One faculty member “predicts that it will become one of the most cited papers in respiratory chain research, as important to our complete understanding of energy generation as is the mechanism of ATP synthase.”    The original paper in Nature1 used the same piston metaphor and contained the same enthusiasm:The overall architecture of this large molecular machine is now clear.  F-ATPase [ATP Synthase] has been compared to a turbine.  In a similar vein, complex I seems to resemble a steam engine, where the energy of the electron transfer is used to move a piston, which then drives, instead of wheels, a set of discontinuous helices.Tomoko Ohnishi, commenting on this paper in the same issue of Nature, continued the piston metaphor in his title, “Structural biology: Piston drives a proton pump.”2  He described how the food we eat goes through a “highly efficient process” called oxidative phosphorylation in the mitochondria, ending in the synthesis of ATP.  Complex I was known to have some distance between its electron acceptors and the transmembrane antiporters.  It was unknown how the parts were coupled.  Now, the mechanism of the first enzyme, Complex I, is becoming clear:The membrane-spanning enzyme known as complex I couples the movement of electrons to that of protons as a way of converting energy.  Crystal structures suggest how electron transfer drives proton pumping from afar.    Complex I is one of the energy-converting enzyme complexes found in the membranes of the cell’s fuel factories, the mitochondria, and was the last such complex without a structural portrait.  But in an epoch-making paper in this issue, Sazanov and colleagues1 describe X-ray structures of bacterial complex I, and report that it has an unusual ‘piston’ mechanism for controlling proton movement across mitochondrial membranes (see page 441).Both the original paper and Ohnishi’s summary contain diagrams showing how the piston mechanism works in conjunction with the connecting rod described in the 07/06/2010 entry.    ATP Synthase was mentioned in a PNAS commentary this week.3  Stuart L. Ferguson [Oxford U] recounted the decades of effort to determine how ATP was generated.  He indicated that much remains to be learned, including why different life forms have different numbers of c-subunits in the F0 rotor (for background, see 12/22/2003, 08/10/2004, 08/04/2010), but mentioned “the apparently universal nature of the ATP synthase” in passing, indicating that even lowly bacteria have these elegant machines.  Eukaryotes (including all plants and animals) and eubacteria, but not archaea, “are from sequence analyses very similar,” he mentioned.  Archaea also use forms of ATP synthase that differ from those of eukaryotes in some respects.1.  Efremov, Baradaran, and Sazamov, “The architecture of respiratory complex I,” Nature 465 (27 May 2010), pages: 441?445, doi:10.1038/nature09066.2.  Tomoko Ohnishi, “Structural biology: Piston drives a proton pump,” Nature 465 (27 May 2010), pages 428?429, doi:10.1038/465428a.3.  Stuart L. Ferguson, “ATP synthase: From sequence to ring size to the P/O ratio,” http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2010/09/20/1012260107.full.pdf+html>Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online before print September 21, 2010, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1012260107.So what can evolutionists do with the discovery of rotary engines and piston engines in the simplest forms of life, all the way up to humans?  They just attribute it all to the remarkable creative power of the goddess Evolution.    A Nature Education article by Nick Lane (cf. 08/11/2010) referred to the piston paper by Efremov et al, saying “Again, the structure betrays the mechanism – in this case not a rotary motor but, even more surprisingly, a lever mechanism not unlike the piston of a steam engine (Figure 2),”  But then, Lane invoked Michael Russell’s lame hydrothermal waste dump myth (02/15/2008) – you remember, the one that falsified the primordial soup myth (02/05/2010) – to draw a parallel from simple proton gradients in deep sea vents to the proton gradients that drive pistons and rotors in the cell.    That’s like comparing rolling stones to automobiles, or clouds to aircraft.  Look at his convoluted reasoning to get from rolling stones to automobiles without intelligent design:There are, of course, big open questions – not least, how the gradients might have been tapped by the earliest cells, which certainly lacked such sophisticated protein machinery as the ATP synthase,” Lane admitted.  “There are a few possible abiotic mechanisms, presently under scrutiny in Russell’s lab and elsewhere.  But thermodynamic arguments, remarkably, suggest that the only way life could have started at all is if it found a way to tap the proton gradients.  So tell us, Nick, did Life try to tap into these gradients on purpose?  After all, if it “found a way,” it must have been looking for it.  In Lane’s vision quest, Life, in some nebulous form lacking ATP and a proton gradient, studies those deep-sea vents with furrowed brow, asking “How can we tap into that?”  But wait – without a way to tap into it already, it would have no energy to look for, discover, and harness the proton gradient.  Well, that must imply, then, that all the machinery just “arose” all together, fully formed, by chance.  Maybe it was a miracle: “the acquisition of mitochondria and the origin of complexity could be one and the same event,” he said.    Only an evolutionist gets away with this kind of nonsense in scientific lit.  But that’s not all.  Lane proceeded to extend his mythology to all complex life, with all its organs and functions, speculating how it all originated with proton gradients.  In the end, though, he had to admit the whole idea was a myth:The question is, what kind of a cell acquired mitochondria in the first place?  Most large-scale genomic studies suggest that the answer is an archaeon – that is, a prokaryotic cell that is in most respects like a bacterium.  That begs the question, how did mitochondria get inside an archaeon?  The answer is a mystery but might go some way toward explaining why complex life derives from a single common ancestor, which arose just once in the 4 billion years of life on Earth.Well, at least he recognized he left some “big open questions” begging.  Nothing more needs to be said.  He just shot any claim to science out from under his own feet and showed himself belonging to a “mystery” cult, along with the editors of Nature, who, by printing his speculations, became willing accomplices in promoting the mystery cult.    Take Nick Lane’s freak show (08/11/2010) to Mad Magazine where it belongs.  The rest of us are enjoying this confirmation of intelligent design at the smallest scale of life.  You’re running on pistons and rotary engines.  Cool!  Lane gets a teeny bit of credit for sharing one amazing factoid in his article about the electrical potential in your body set up by these proton gradients: “A membrane potential of 150 mV across the 5-nanometer membrane gives a field strength of 30 million volts per meter – equivalent to a bolt of lightning.”  You’ve got lightning in your tank.  Hot!(Visited 55 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Jetstar eyes China expansion

first_imgJetstar boss Jayne Hrdlicka has the low-cost carrier group’s sights set on a good share of more than 1.8 billion travellers expected to enter the rapidly expanding Asia-Pacific travel market over the next 20 years.She wants to make Jetstar the region’s LCC of choice and sees China as a big opportunity.Jetstar moved quickly to establish links to Asia after it was founded 12 years ago and now has operations or partnerships in Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Japan and Singapore. It faces aggressive competition from the likes of AirAsia and Singapore Airlines offshoots Scoot and Tiger Air.Hrdlicka told attendees at the CAPA Australia-Pacific Aviation Forum in Brisbane  that the Jetstar Group now had a fleet of 127 aircraft flying to 80 destinations and revenue of more than $4.5 billion, ranking it as one of the top five low-cost carriers around the world.“So we are doing well, but we are not satisfied with where we stand,’’ she said. “We are competing in the most dynamic aviation markets in the world, so that we know that standing still effectively means falling behind.’’In addition to its big presence in Australia and New Zealand, Hrdlicka said it had a strong and growing position in Japan and had just finished one of its best years yet in Singapore, where connections with 26 partners was seeing the brand go from “strength to strength”.“And there is Vietnam — the fastest growing economy and aviation market in the region,’’ she said. “Our dual brand relationship with Vietnam Airlines puts us in a  unique position, which we are very happy about.’’The group’s fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliner’s completed the network by connecting Australia to South-East Asia and North Asia, Hrdlicka said.She acknowledged that smaller LCCs were forming new alliances in to replicate the scale and marketing clout of the bigger players but noted Jetstar had a 12-yrear head start when it came to forming partnerships and it was something it was good at doing.“We believe the future of the Asian LCC market is going to be owned by brands that people know and trust,’’ she said. “Brands that offer a seamless booking experience, a broad network and an to tailor what you get on board.“In other words, brands that provide the next generation of Asian travellers with the ability to realise their travel aspirations in the way that works best for them.’’Vowing to stay true to Jetstar’s low-cost fundamentals, Hrdlicka said the airline would also continue to think disruptively to  challenge aviation and low-cost carrier fundamentals.She said disruption was at the heart of the group’s culture and this had been demonstrated with strategies such as the decisions to expand the brand into Asia, the decision to take it long-haul and then to codeshare with full service carriers.It would also be guided by three core principles of focusing on customers, harnessing new technologies and leading with new business models. She rejected the idea that low fares meant shabby service and said a revamped approach to training would see 3500 staff go through a new course by the end of this financial year.New technology required capital expenditure but lowered costs in the long run and resulted in a better travel experience.Jetstar was the first LCC to introduce online chat services, was pioneering straight- to- gate check-in at Singapore’s Changi Airport and was fully automating its airports like it had with Terminal 4 in Melbourne.It had also overhauled its websites to make them cleaner, more responsive and enjoyable as part of an initiative called Smart Retailing.last_img read more

Logie shines in O’Neill Coldwater Classic

first_imgSAinfo reporter “All year I’ve been dropping one big score. Out here, I felt like I was getting better every heat. I had that one (in the final) that would have been a nine if I made it out of that last turn.” 10th on ASP World RankingsLogie earned $17 500 (approx. R150 000) and a priceless 6 500 points, which also elevated him to 10th place on the ASP World Rankings where the top 10 who have not already qualified via their WCT rankings, also qualify for the WCT. ‘Pretty stoked’“I’m pretty stoked with how I surfed in this event,” Logie said after his exit. “I’m really disappointed because I had one really good score (8.33 out of 10) in that heat and I feel like I just needed an average one to make it through. Taj has been ripping though, and congratulations to him.” “I really wanted to win another event this year, especially since I’m out of the race for the title,” Burrow said. “That’s pretty depressing, but I’m really happy that it just fell into place here in Santa Cruz. Needing a big result to re-qualify for the 2013 WCT, Logie was in devastating form in the two-metre-plus waves on the final day of the event, dispatching giant-killer Raoni Monteiro of Brazil in round five and WCT rankings leader, Australia’s Joel Parkinson, in the quarter-finals before being ousted by eventual winner Taj Burrow in their semi-final encounter. Burrow built momentum throughout the event and took out three goofy-foot standouts on the final day with an amazing variety of forehand manoeuvres, toppling young Brazilian Gabriel Medina Logie and then his Australian compatriot and good friend Matt Wilkinson in the final. With two Prime rated events scheduled for Hawaii, the 33-year-old Durbanite is guaranteed an additional 500 points on the rankings just by entering. CURRENT ASP WCT TOP FIVE (After O’Neill Coldwater Classic):Joel Parkinson (AUS) 53 900 ptsKelly Slater (USA) 50 700 ptsMick Fanning (AUS) 47 000 ptsJohn John Florence (HAW) 44 350 ptsAdriano de Souza (BRA) 42 350 pts 8 November 2012 “This result is huge for me,” Logie said. “These points are massive. I was looking pretty out of it going in to this event and a third place here shoots me quite a bit up the rankings. I’m still not home and dry, but hopefully in Hawaii I can make up some points.” Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material 12. Jordy Smith 26 650 pts17. Travis Logie 16 250 pts Highest scoreWilkinson, a former winner at the venue when it hosted a Prime-rated event in 2010, continued his backhand assault at Steamer Lane, recording the day’s highest heat total of 17.73, while defeating Brazil’s Adriano de Souza and Michel Bourez of French Polynesia to attain his first ASP WCT Final appearance. Logie, who entered the O’Neill Coldwater Classic ranked 26th, vaulted up the rankings to 17th place, well inside the cut-off point of 22 surfers who automatically re-qualify for a spot on the following year’s elite tour, with just one event at Pipeline in Hawaii still to be run. South Africans Heading into the final event of the year, the Billabong Pipeline Masters, which take place from 8 to 20 December, three surfers remain mathematically in contention for the 2012 ASP World Title: Joel Parkinson, Kelly Slater (USA) and Mick Fanning (Aus). “To get two wins in a year, I’ve only done that once before so I’m really happy.” South African surfer Travis Logie matched his career best result on the ASP World Championship Tour (WCT) when he surfed his way into third place at the O’Neill Coldwater Classic at Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz, California on Tuesday. Second winBurrow’s win marks his second of the season after he snatched the opening event on the Gold Coast of Australia. Western Australia’s favourite son now sits at number six on the 2012 ASP WCT rankings. “I was stoked when I made it through the third round,” Wilkinson said. “Every heat after that, I just kept building. I felt amazing. I was getting nines and backing them up. last_img read more

SA looks to manufacturing for growth

first_img5 April 2013 The latest three-year roll-over of South Africa’s Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) focuses squarely on boosting the country’s manufacturing sector in order to grow jobs, exports and the production of value added goods, says Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies. Speaking at the launch of the IPAP 2013-16 in Johannesburg on Thursday, Davies said the action plan “focuses on value added production, with state support centred on nurturing and defending industrial development”. Davies emphasised that for South Africa to grow its employment, it had to pay attention to the productive sectors of the economy, and move away from being consumption-driven and import-intensive, especially with respect to value-added goods. Davies said since the launch of the first IPAP, the government had ensured that policy interventions supported localisation of state procurement in order to support local industries and job creation. “These interventions include growing our manufacturing, boosting exports, and beefing up our competition policies.” Economic Development Minister Ibrahim Patel, also speaking at Thursday’s launch, said the IPAP was the most important jobs driver envisaged in the government’s New Growth Path (NGP) economic strategy, which has set the ambitious target of creating five-million jobs by 2020. “It is about strengthening industrial policy,” Patel said, adding: “Industrial policy is back on the agenda globally. There is a growing appetite both in South Africa and the continent to industrialise and reclaim our domestic market and to expand our capacity to export to new markets.” Industrialisation was central to creating sustainable jobs not only in manufacturing but also in supporting sectors such as agriculture and mining, Patel added. The IPAP seeks to move South Africa away from a model in which modest economic growth is driven by consumption-driven sectors of the economy (finance and insurance, real estate, wholesale and retail, catering and accommodation), with the productive sectors of the economy (agriculture, mining, manufacturing, construction) playing a subordinate role. In order to achieve this, the IPAP focuses on exploiting a number of opportunities for South African manufacturing, including re-aligning the country’s value-added exports towards rapidly developing economies in sub-Saharan Africa, the country’s BRICS partners Brazil, Russia, India and China, and other emerging markets. At the same time, the IPAP emphasizes the importance of increased beneficiation of South Africa’s massive mineral wealth. “Much greater attention will have to be devoted to downstream beneficiation opportunities and the enormous potential that exists to deepen and extend the upstream value chain, with a sharp eye towards meeting the explosion of future demand associated with the sub-Saharan commodity boom,” the IPAP states. Another key enabler for local manufacturing is the government’s massive infrastructure build programme. “Manufacturing must increasingly provide machinery and other inputs for the infrastructure build programme, which is central to South Africa’s growth strategy and, more generally, into public goods, including transport, health, education and housing,” the IPAP states. South African manufacturing, the IPAP notes, bore the brunt of the recent global recession combined with a number of domestic shocks. “It is imperative that having weathered the storm, the domestic manufacturing sector is able to build upon its strengths, overcome its competitive weaknesses and seize new opportunities within an enabling and more strongly supportive Government policy environment.” SAinfo reporter and SAnews.gov.zalast_img read more

The Heats WhacAMole Problem

The aggressiveness of San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green was key in the Spurs’ hot start. Usually these two function primarily as finishers. But in Game 3, Leonard and Green attacked mismatches and closeouts, looking to drive the ball to the basket. The NBA’s SportVU Player Tracking Statistics showed that drives (defined as any non-transition touch that starts at least 20 feet from the basket and is dribbled within 10 feet of the basket) by Leonard and Green were more frequent and more effective than usual.Kawhi Leonard’s and Danny Green’s DrivesCombined, Leonard and Green put together 44 points on 17-of-21 shooting, with five assists. This was not so much an explosion of individual excellence, but a reflection of how adaptable the Spurs’ offense is.While Leonard and Green were slashing through the Heat defense, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili were distractions, pulling defensive attention in other directions. According to the SportVU Player Tracking Box Score, Parker and Ginobili touched the ball 82 and 44 times, respectively, essentially the same as their playoff averages coming into the game. But though they had been averaging 19.9 drives per game combined in the playoffs, they had just eight in Game 3. The Heat were focused on bottling up the duo, which usually leads to open outside shots for guys like Leonard and Green. Game 3 of the NBA Finals featured the San Antonio Spurs’ offense at its best. It wasn’t just its 19-point margin of victory over the Miami Heat, 111-92, that impressed, or its 41 points in the first quarter, or that it made 75.8 percent of its shots in the first half; it was the way the players did all this Tuesday night: running their system and taking what the Heat gave them. During the regular season, about a quarter of Leonard’s and Green’s shots were spot-up 3-pointers, according to mySynergySports. But as the Heat pay more attention to chasing those shooters off the 3-point line, the Spurs have attacked open spaces off the dribble. This opportunity doesn’t always present itself because the Spurs’ offense is so good at getting them those open shots. But the beauty of the Spurs’ offense is that when Plan A is stymied, they don’t scramble; they move smoothly on to Plan B or Plan C. Take away Parker’s and Ginobili’s driving lanes, and they kick it out to shooters. Cover up those shooters, and they drive through rotations.This cascade of offensive options usually works inside out (drive and kick out for a 3-pointer), but in Game 3 the Spurs added one more step, working it back inside with these reactive drives by Leonard and Green. During the regular season, about 47 percent of the Spurs’ shots came in the paint. In Game 3, it was 56 percent.The Heat’s offense played at a high level in this game as well, but it was chasing an absurd threshold of efficiency almost from the outset. Miami’s main challenges are figuring out how to raise their own offensive performance and disrupting the Spurs’ offense somewhere in the process. Both look to be difficult. read more

Former Chief Minister Mike Misick to run as an Independent candidate in

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, June 29, 2016 – Michael Misick today announced that he will offer in the upcoming General Elections and while he is not running on the PNP ticket due to some party in fighting, he is running as an independent who still bleeds yellow.  “It’s new grounds for me, because if you cut me you will see PNP, you will see yellow in my blood.  That’s why I say it’s a difficult day for me, but I believe it’s the best decision for this country because I believe i have a contribution to make.”The former premier had a list of what he believes should be done, could have been done and must be done for a better Turks and Caicos and pushed an anti-colonialism message that made the current administration, in particular the current premier Rufus Ewing seem like putty in the hands of the UK.  He believes too many people are neglected. “These things cannot continue to go on.  So one of the most important thing in our country is representation for our people.   And unfortunately, this PNP, people don’t feel like they can call them.”He pointed out that he and Hon Rufus Ewing are different types, and Mike likened his leadership style to Moses of the Bible; “And I was a politician before him.  I’m a PNP, my views are known to them, some of these things I’ve said now, I said to them two years ago, and so sometimes you have to do things yourself,” where he wants to see his own people empowered and makes no allowance for the British to be boss or to for Turks and Caicos Islanders to be experimental guinea pigs. “You know I’m sick and tired of these people experimenting with us, as if we are guinea pigs.” Misick slammed the current policy allowing the Integrity Commission to run as hound dogs and not watch dogs as he put it, and said the country could actually make use of Haitians who come in illegally by boat.  “Instead of sending everyone back home, maybe we could encourage some form of farming, so that it helps the country as well as it helps others.” Michael Eugene Misick said that he should not have to wait until after the SIPT Trials alleging he was corrupt in office.  “It will no longer cause me to delay and delay and delay.  Delay for what?   $60 million dollars, and there is no evidence of any corruption.”And when Magnetic Media asked him why he did not get done the things he believes should have been done when he was in government from 2003 to 2009; there was this.  “We thought we had at least two more years left in that term and at least couple more terms.  And so, quite frankly, we ran out of time, the British government intervened, they overthrew a legitimate government.”As to a question about this electability…. Michael Misick is certain that he will secure enough of the 7,727 Voters to be among the five at large candidates in the House of Assembly following the 2016 run-off.  “I believe, I believe, do you believe, do you believe in Turks and Caicos.”last_img read more