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June 15, 2021 | |Post a Comment

first_imgThe Nov. 6 midterm elections have come and gone, with some outcomes  still in doubt. And while, fundamentally, political and economic conditions have remained the same, some of the outcomes are welcomed. Women, people of color, LGBTQ2S people and immigrants made history.They were elected on a wide range of progressive issues, along with who they are.For example, Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia are the first Latinx women to represent Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives.  Both are strong advocates of immigrant rights.Sharice Davids and Deb Haaland became the first two Indigenous women to win seats in the House, representing Kansas and New Mexico, respectively. Haaland stated, “America isn’t broke, but we have been pillaged by billionaires and big corporations who get rich off our infrastructure and expect working people to foot the bill. No more.” (inequality.org, Nov. 7)Ilhan Omar, a Somali, and Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian, became the first Muslim women who won House seats.  Omar won her seat in Minnesota, home to the largest Somali community in the U.S. Tlaib won her seat — vacated by Rep. John Conyers, who is Black — with over 87 percent of the vote in her Michigan district.  A month before the elections, Tlaib was arrested for blocking a McDonald’s demanding $15 and a union. Both of these women ran on a platform of Medicare-for-all and debt-free college tuition.Ayanna Pressley, a former Boston City Council member, became the first African-American woman to represent Massachusetts in the U.S. House.Alexandria-Ocasio Cortez, a Puerto Rican, became the youngest woman to be voted into the U.S. House; she represents the boroughs of Queens and the Bronx in New York City.  She has called for the abolition of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.In Colorado, Jared Polis was the first openly gay man to be elected governor of a state, while Christine Hallquist, a trans woman, got 40 percent of the votes for governor of Vermont.These elections alone — along with progressive referendums passed allowing former felons to vote in Florida; a stop to gerrymandering in Michigan; the legalization of marijuana in Michigan, Missouri and Utah, which should lead to overturning convictions for its sale and use — represent the first progressive electoral rebuke to white supremacist, misogynist Trumpism.These midterm elections, like so many prior ones, can serve as a political barometer on the mood of the masses, showing who the masses want out, as opposed to who the masses want voted in.What hasn’t changedDespite any progressive victories, the fundamental class features of U.S. bourgeois elections have not changed.  One important feature is voter suppression based on inherent inequality steeped in white supremacy and other class bias against people who are indigent and working class. This is especially true for sectors of the working class who are of African descent, immigrant, Indigenous and young.  And the state — which includes the police, laws, courts, prisons, etc. — is used as a repressive instrument to reinforce this inequality.Voter suppression remains acutely widespread in the deep South, where Black people won the right to vote a mere 53 years ago. It is also an issue in North Dakota, where an estimated 5,000 Indigenous people who live in rural areas have post office addresses. A federal judge at the end of October refused to overturn a new election ruling that requires a street address, thus barring thousands of Native people from voting.The right of the most oppressed to vote must be defended by the movement as an act of anti-white-supremacist, pro-working-class solidarity, first and foremost.  That is why the candidacy of Stacey Abrams, the first Black woman candidate to run for governor in a former slave state, Georgia, should be supported, no matter her political affiliation. As of this writing, thousands of votes still remain uncounted in that state.While the now Democrat-controlled House of Representatives has more people of color and women, the Republican-controlled Senate is known as the millionaires’ club, a majority of cis white males unapologetically tied to corporate interests.Currently, there are 23 women senators, including four of color, out of a total of 100. There are two senators from each state, no matter the population, large or small, which is undemocratic and unrepresentative, even under bourgeois norms.The bottom line is that elections, even under a bourgeois democracy, cannot overturn class relations of any kind, even when progressive candidates and popular reforms are front and center.  There still remains intact a small elite ruling class, which owns and controls the vast wealth of the world’s resources and is the oppressor of the global working class.Until a revolutionary process overturns those class relations, elections will continue to be just a barometer, not a game changer for workers and oppressed peoples.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

May 31, 2021 | |Post a Comment

first_img Share Save Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Growth in Home Prices Might Slow Down in 2018 Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Home / Daily Dose / Growth in Home Prices Might Slow Down in 2018 Tagged with: affordable Growth Homes mortgage overvalued price rise Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Home prices in the U.S. can expect a modest slowdown in 2018, according to Fitch Ratings’ Global Housing Mortgage Outlook released on Monday. The outlook forecasts a slowdown of 5 percent in U.S. price growth and indicated that the U.S. housing market remains stable despite several cities in the West being overvalued. According to the report, these cities are likely to experience slower growth or modest correction.The report indicated that prices in California, Arizona, Nevada, and Washington had increased 50 percent since 2012, while average prices in New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts were up less than half that figure over the same period. Despite these increases, affordability in most areas of the U.S. remains strong by historical standards, the report said. Additionally, the U.S. price-to-income ratio was near the 25-year average, although an increase in mortgage rates and a potential revision to the tax treatment for mortgage interest deductions could put negative pressure on affordability.In terms of mortgage banking, the report noted that Non-bank lenders (NBL) in the U.S., were among six of the top 10 lenders by volume because of more flexible credit standards. Globally, the report indicated that lenders could face pressure to relax their origination standards since long-term fixed-rate loans are less exposed to increasing rates, but fewer re-financings mean lower lending volumes. In terms of a global outlook for housing, the report indicated that national house prices would rise this year in 19 of 22 markets studied by Fitch, but growth was expected to be slow in most markets as risks grew on the prospect of gradually rising mortgage rates comes into view this year. The report noted that Norway, Greece, and the UK were the only countries not expected to see price rises this year.“Arrears are at very low levels in most markets. They will only move in one direction as mortgage rates rise slowly due to higher policy rates and more expensive bank funding from the gradual unwinding of quantitative easing. Floating-rate loans and borrowers refinancing to new rates will be first affected,” said Suzanne Albers, Senior Director, Structured Finance at Fitch Ratings.The report indicated that in 2018, a combination of factors would be needed to constrain house price rises that have gone beyond market fundamentals and are primarily due to buyers’ expectations for further growth. Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Market Studies, News Related Articles The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago  Print This Postcenter_img Sign up for DS News Daily affordable Growth Homes mortgage overvalued price rise 2018-01-22 Staff Writer The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Subscribe Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago January 22, 2018 1,520 Views Previous: The Art of the Possible in Mortgage and Tech Next: The Top 25 Women of Law, Part 3last_img read more

September 28, 2020 | |Post a Comment

first_imgThe International Maritime Organization (IMO) Council should give the new working group for reforming the agency a remit that allows it to increase public scrutiny and civil society engagement, Transparency International said.“The stakes are too high for the entire planet for the IMO to continue to operate as a closed shop,” Rueben Lifuka, vice-chair of Transparency International pointed out.Transparency International is concerned that the UK, Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, Panama, United Arab Emirates and United States could hamper reform at the IMO. Last month, they signed and submitted an official document to the IMO warning that “further expansion of access to information” about the agency “could lead to outside influence”.“Unfortunately the International Maritime Organization is far too susceptible to disproportionate influence from private interests and certain member states, meaning that there could be obstacles to meeting the targets for emissions reduction set earlier this year,” Lifuka said. “This is why we want to see governance reform at the IMO. The agency needs to move towards a more open and transparent way of operating, with greater opportunities for public scrutiny and civil society engagement,” he added.Transparency International’s assessment of the IMO’s governance structure published in July 2018 found a number of flaws in the IMO’s governance, including a disproportionate influence of private industry and an unequal influence of certain member states in the policymaking process. The report also highlighted a significant lack of delegate accountability, with the public often unable to find out their national delegation’s position in debates and negotiations.Following the publication of the report, the IMO established a working group for reforming the governance of the agency, which regulates global shipping and has a crucial role to play in combatting climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions.In April 2018, the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) set a target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from shipping by at least 50 percent by 2050 compared to 2008, consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement.The IMO Council will set the terms of reference for the working group at its next meeting to be held from November 19 to 23, 2018.last_img read more

September 28, 2020 | |Post a Comment

first_imgItalian oil and gas explorer Eni, together with its French partner Total, has plans to further explore for hydrocarbons in Cyprus, despite a recent setback when the company had to move its drillship out of the country amid Turkey objecting.According to a statement this week by the Cypriot energy ministry, Eni and Total have applied for a hydrocarbon research license for the Offshore Block 7 in the country’s exclusive economic zone.The ministry said it would examine the request in the coming days, and eventually come up with a decision.Cyprus’ energy minister Georgios Lakotryypis also confirmed the news via social media where he also shared the map of offshore blocks.He said: “This afternoon I informed President Anastasiades about the filing of an application for a hydrocarbon research permit for Block 7 of the Cypriot #ΑΟΖ by the Consortium @TOTAL/@ENI.”<span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span><span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>This is not the first time Eni and Total have cooperated offshore Cyprus. They also share ownership in the blocks 6 & 11.The two oil and gas majors in February 2018 announced “a lean gas discovery” in Block 6 Offshore Cyprus at the Calypso 1 NFW, confirming earlier reports by the Cypriot media.At the time, Eni said Calypso 1 was a promising gas discovery and confirmed the extension of the “Zohr like” play in the Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), referring to its Zohr field which recently started producing offshore Egypt. Zohr is seen as the largest gas field in the Mediterranean.While the news of Calypso was uplifting for Eni, later in February, when the drillship used for the discovery attempted to move to the Soupia well located in the Block 3, it was blocked by the Turkish navy on the grounds of the expected military operation at the destination.Both Turkey and the breakaway state of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus – recognized only by Turkey – have accused the internationally recognized government of Cyprus of unilaterally conducting hydrocarbon exploration only for the benefit of the Greek side, without taking into consideration the Turkish Cypriots’ interests.Cyprus’ president Nicos Anastasiades has said the government’s “goal is to fully explore Cyprus’s hydrocarbon potential, in the best terms possible, so as to maximize the benefits for all the people of Cyprus,” dismissing the Turkish side’s accusations as unfounded and unjustified.Eni then moved the Saipem 12000 drillship to Morocco, with its CEO Claudio Descalzi saying that Eni would not relinquish its interests in the area, but would wait for the “for international, European, Turkish, Greek and Cypriot diplomacy to find a solution.”Oil and gas explorers have shown an increasing interest in Cyprus’ hydrocarbon potential, and that of the Eastern Mediterranean overall,  following giant gas discoveries made recently in the region, namely Noble Energy’s Leviathan gas field offshore Israel, and Eni’s Zohr discovery, offshore Egypt.The U.S. oil and gas major ExxonMobil recently started drilling the drilling of “Delphyne-1” well in the offshore Block 10.Exxon is the operator of the Block 10, with its partner being Qatar Petroleum. The duo won the block as part of the third offshore licensing round in December 2016.Turkey has again objected saying the ‘unilateral’ drilling would not bring peace to the Eastern Mediterranean region, adding it will itself start drilling in “areas licensed by the Turkish Cypriots.”Offshore Energy Today Stafflast_img read more

September 9, 2020 | |Post a Comment

first_img“It is not rocket science about swimming. At the competition in Germany, our kids swarm with Olympians. The like of Abeo Jackson of Ghana who was at the last Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil was at the competition. What is needed is to catch them young and begin proper training programme for them. If we get the support of sponsors and government, we can train them better to produce the desired results,” stressed Obatoyinbo.He said that with several medals at stake in swimming events of either the Olympics or Commonwealth Games, Nigeria cannot continue to ignore the sport and be putting money into popular sports that are not producing results for the country.“ Our kids have broken the myth that swimming is not for the black people. They competed against swimmers from 35 other clubs from seven countries in Germany and came out overall first. They won 42 gold, 39 silver and 35 bronze medals to place overall first. We equally had outstanding performances in 12 events including games records.”The Ikoyi Club Swimming Section Games Captain hinted that normal age for the competition is nine years but the Nigerian team has some swimmers aged between six and seven years who are getting full attention of the coaches.“By catching them young, we are already introducing them to the nitty-gritty of the sport. It is just a matter of time before these kids hit the limelight with the right funding for their training regimen.“For the record, I want to state here that Ikoyi Club did not go to any other competition before arriving Germany. Yet we were able to finish ahead of clubs that went on pre competition training in Belgium, The Netherlands, UK etc. If we have good funding from either the corporate world or government, you can imagine what these children are capable of doing.“I strongly belief we can make it to the Olympic and do well if we do the right things with our swimmers, most especially these young one who have been exposed to international competitions,” Obatoyinbo explained further.He admitted that the major challenge the section is facing is funding. “ From around 28 kids two three years ago, we now have over 100 children. We want to implore more sponsors to come to our aid. This year we had three banks and some other sponsors from the telcoms and oil and gas. We are looking at getting core sponsors to pick our participation in other competitions before arriving Germany to defend our title next year.”Amongst the swimmers that represented Ikoyi Club in Germany were the duo of Omo-Oluwani Obatoyinbo and Kitan Adeniji. Obatoyinbo and Adeniji were the two swimmers that represented Nigeria at the last African Junior Championships in Egypt. Obatoyinbo won two bronze medals in 50m freestyle and 50m backstroke.He told THISDAY that the experience in Germany has further prepared him for what to expect at top competitions.Little Liana Olaseinde-Rhodes and her two sisters, Siana and Arife spoke brilliantly about their experiences in Germany.“I won one gold, one silver, one bronze and a certificate in 50m freestyle, butterfly, breaststroke and backstroke. I hope to win more medals next year,” observed Siana.Twelve-year old Chiamaka Kanu who won three gold, one silver and two bronze medals however did not show excitement in competing for Nigeria.Asked if she would want to go to either the Olympics or the Commonwealth Games in Nigerian green and white colours, she retorted: “Nigeria? I don’t know. I prefer going to a country where there are better training facilities. May be if things improve, I may represent Nigeria.”She however showed enthusiasm to meet American legend of the sport, Michael Phelps. “I would love to meet Phelps and ask him the secret behind all the Olympic gold medals he has won in swimming.In some of the star events, the Ikoyi Club girls came first in the 4x100m Freestyle relay while the boys finished second in the Medley relay team. The swimmers who participated in the Boys’ Freestyle relay include; Adewole Adekoya, Akaolisa Nweze, Toluwalase Magbagbeola, and Olaseni Adekeye all of who achieved sub 1.10:00. They are 13 years of age.The Girls’ Freestyle relay team included; Chiamaka Kanu, Iman Adama, Layomi Odusanya and Maria Perner while the quartet of Adewole Adekoya, Akaolisa Nweze, Luka Okoli, and Olaseni Adekeye anchored the Boys’ Medley relayThe trio of Pius Adegboye, Barakumo Loya and Tough Atelemo were the coaches that led the Ikoyi Club 1938 children to win the competition in Germany.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram *As Ikoyi Club celebrates worthy Nigerian champions from GermanyDuro IkhazuagbeVice Chairman/Games Captain of the Swimming Section of Ikoyi Club, Oloyede Obatoyinbo, has described as ‘myth’ the presumption that swimming is not one sport where the black man can excel.Speaking at the welcome party the club held at the weekend for the 42 children that won the first position at the recently concluded 46th International Swimming Competition in Neheim-Husten, Germany, Obatoyinbo said that for Nigeria to have emerged champions at this cadet level, proper grooming is all that is needed to excel at the senior level.last_img read more

August 26, 2020 | |Post a Comment

first_imgThe Angels on Thursday acquired infielder Tommy La Stella from the Chicago Cubs for cash or a player to be named, adding some experience, versatility and a knack for getting on base to their infield depth chart.La Stella, 29, has played parts of five seasons in the majors, four with the Cubs. He has a career .345 on-base percentage, including .389 as recently as 2017.La Stella has played 147 games at second, 89 at third and one at first base. The Angels have told him to be prepared to play all three this year.The Angels currently have Andrelton Simmons as their shortstop and Albert Pujols as their first baseman, for as much as he’s capable of playing. Pujols is coming back from knee surgery. They also have Zack Cozart coming back from shoulder surgery, prepared to play either second or third. Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img La Stella, who can be optioned next season, goes into the mix to fill around those players.David Fletcher is currently the leading candidate to start at second or third – whichever Cozart doesn’t play – but he will also compete in spring training with Taylor Ward and Luis Rengifo at those infield spots. Minor leaguers Matt Thaiss and Jared Walsh also could be in the mix at first base.The Angels have been trying to improve their on-base percentage for two seasons. Last year, their .313 on-base percentage ranked 10th in the American League.La Stella has not had an on-base percentage lower than .328 in any season in which he’s had 100 plate appearances.In order to create a spot on the 40-man roster for La Stella, the Angels released outfielder Jabari Blash.last_img read more