Miner on bail for narco trafficking

first_imgA gold miner on Monday appeared in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan to answer to a charge of possession of narcotics for the purpose of trafficking.Akeem Richmond, 20, of Jawala Village, Upper Mazaruni, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), denied the charge which stated that on September 4, 2018, he had in his possession 22 grams of cannabis for the purpose of trafficking.He was released on $50,000 bail and the case has been transferred to the Kamarang Magistrate’s Court where it will continue on December 17.last_img

Adult Stem Cells Outpace Embryonics

first_img(Visited 30 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Some still play with embryos, but there seems little reason for it when adult stem cells perform so well.Researchers learn how to grow old brain cells (Science Daily): Good news from the Salk Institute. “For the first time, scientists can use skin samples from older patients to create brain cells without rolling back the youthfulness clock in the cells first. The new technique, which yields cells resembling those found in older people’s brains, will be a boon to scientists studying age-related diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.”Mesenchymal stem cells use extracellular vesicles to outsource mitophagy and shuttle microRNAs (Nature Communications): Basic research at Scripps is helping understand why mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) show promise in animal studies and human clinical trials. “Collectively, these studies mechanistically link mitophagy and MSC survival with macrophage function, thereby providing a physiologically relevant context for the innate immunomodulatory activity of MSCs.”Transplantation of unique, newly discovered stems cells may lead to promising stroke therapy (Science Daily): Preventing viral invasions is essential to keeping one’s adult stem cells healthy and ready for their functions. This article pits adult stem cells against embryonic stem cells by discussing “Muse cells” found in a variety of tissues, including bone marrow, fat tissues and skin. “Muse cells are unique stem cells that are able to self-renew and also display high efficiency for differentiating into neuron-like cells,” a researcher from U of South Florida says.  But can they beat embryos?According to the researchers, fetal stem cells may appear to be better candidates for replacing lost neural circuitry, considering that they preferentially differentiate toward being neuronal cells. However, fetal stem cell accessibility is limited and, like embryonic stem cells, their immaturity may present safety issues, such as tumor development. Also, the use of fetal and embryonic stem cells has been the topic of many ethical debates. Since Muse cells can be derived from adult tissue rather than fetal or embryonic tissue, the ethical quandaries associated with stem cell therapy may be considerably allayed with their use.Not only do Muse cells also have the practical advantage of being non-tumorigenic, they are readily accessed commercially and can also be easily collected from patient skin biopsies. Once more, Muse cells do not have to be “induced,” or genetically manipulated, to be pluripotent as required with some other cell varieties — they already display inherent stem cell properties after isolation and, with their acquired neuronal properties, Muse cells spontaneously home toward the stroke-damaged sites.Adult stem cells vs embryos in treatment of macular degeneration: Medical Xpress reports optimistically on Canadians using embryonic stem cells (ESCs) to treat age-related macular degeneration, a common cause of blindness in the elderly. Researchers in Montreal got most of the ESCs to differentiate into pure cones, at least in a dish. But David Levin in another article on Medical Xpress points out that stem cells from adult dental pulp can also be used to treat macular degeneration. Researchers from Tufts University are finding that these cells from a patient’s own teeth can be reprogrammed into the same retinal tissue the Canadians are making from ESCs. In fact, traits of dental pulp stem cells avoid some of the complications and safety concerns of other induced pluripotent stem cells. Both techniques are in the early stages, but why not focus on the adult stem cells and avoid the ethical quandaries of using embryonic stem cells?Scientists reveal how stem cells defend against viruses (PhysOrg): The only article in recent news describing scientific progress in the use of human embryos for stem cells is this study from Singapore. It’s about basic research into how stem cells protect themselves from viruses.  No treatments are described for any health conditions, and nothing about the research suggests that similar processes protect adult stem cells.  Is there any reason, then, to use embryos for this research instead of adult stem cells or induced pluripotent stem cells?Many researchers were delighted to find that induced pluripotent stem cells from adult tissues work just as well as embryonic stem cells. Most of them saw the new gold rush in adult cells, and were relieved to avoid the ethical quandaries. But there are still holdouts who want to tinker with the unborn. Pressure needs to be kept on them about the evil of using embryos and fetal tissues.  Those unethical practices feed the market for abortions (9/20/15, 8/02/15, 7/18/15). These news items undercut the claim that scientists “need” embryos to “help” people.  A multi-pronged attack might dry up that market: (1) embryos are not needed, (2) the smart money is on adult stem cells, and (3) cutting up human embryos at any stage is unethical and immoral.  Secular materialists who won’t be impressed by #3 may listen to #1 and #2.last_img read more

Consciousness Is Not Computable

first_imgA key principle of materialism and physicalism is that all processes must be reducible to matter and energy.In the march from molecules to man, materialists must not encounter any insurmountable hurdles: any observable facts that cannot be reduced to processes beyond matter and energy. That’s because matter and energy are all that exist. Materialist reality cannot countenance anything irreducible to those entities. Already they have a candidate for the insurmountable hurdle, because the proposition of materialism itself is immaterial. As Robert Jastrow said,[Film courtesy of Illustra Media, at TheJohn1010Project.com]Ignoring that show-stopper, the materialist faces several other candidates for insurmountable hurdles: (1) the origin of the universe, (2) the origin of heavy elements, (3) the origin of the Earth, (4) the origin of life, (5) the origin of mulicellular life, (6) the origin of sex, and (7) the origin of consciousness. Consider that last one. If consciousness were reducible to material processes, it should be computable. In other words, a sufficiently programmed computer should be able to re-create consciousness. (Ignore the conundrum for now that programming implies a programmer, which implies intelligent design.)An article by Subhash Kak from Ohio State, published at Live Science, explains flatly “Why Computers Will Never Be Truly Conscious.” One should never say never, but Kak is convinced that artificial consciousness is forever beyond the reach of robots and computers. It’s not a limitation of technology. His conclusion derives from the nature of human consciousness, that inner experience of self that is our closest experience of reality. We humans are aware of our thinking. Computers are not. Kak relates a thought experiment by the late Alan Turing that illustrates the problem: Try to prove that a program will stop on its own. Another computer, monitoring the program, would have to rely on a stop-checking algorithm to decide if it will stop or not. But a deceptive programmer codes the program to do the opposite of what its stop-checking routine says it will do. Kak describes what will happen:Running the stop-checking process on this new program would necessarily make the stop-checker wrong: If it determined that the program would stop, the program’s instructions would tell it not to stop. On the other hand, if the stop-checker determined that the program would not stop, the program’s instructions would halt everything immediately. That makes no sense — and the nonsense gave Turing his conclusion, that there can be no way to analyze a program and be entirely absolutely certain that it can stop. So it’s impossible to be certain that any computer can emulate a system that can definitely stop its train of thought and change to another line of thinking — yet certainty about that capability is an inherent part of being conscious.Human consciousness is also distributed throughout the brain (or at least activates disparate parts of the brain), Kak adds, as he recounts other show-stoppers to the computation of consciousness thought up by scientists and philosophers. So if consciousness is not computable, that makes it a strong candidate for a hurdle too high for reductionist materialism.Not Just One Man’s DifficultyLike Thomas Nagel, author of God and Cosmos, philosopher of mind David Chalmers would prefer to stay satisfied with a material universe. Both of them, however, only have highly speculative and untestable ways to maintain their preference. In a well-stated interview on YouTube reposted by Evolution News, Chalmers delves into the “hard problem of consciousness.” None of us can doubt our own consciousness, he says; it is the most direct experience we have. We can doubt other people’s consciousness, but not our own. He illustrates it with zombies—not the living dead, but theoretical zombies that appear and behave just like us but are not conscious.“When God created the world,” Chambers speculates (ironically for an atheist), He could have created a material world without consciousness. “That would make sense,” he says; it would be logically conceivable. But consciousness is something God would have had to add as a separate thing. Even taking out God, the problem remains that consciousness is separate from materialism, and superfluous to a material reality.Chalmers then dispenses with evolutionary theory as a source of consciousness. Theories about this are generally vague and doubtful, he says. The main problem, though, is that evolution has no need to invent consciousness. The world could work perfectly well without it. An evolutionist’s world would work just fine with complex reflexes and behaviors programmed by genes. Evolution also cannot explain qualia, the direct experiences we have of the world. A color-blind person can know about colors, but cannot have the experience of red unless cured of colorblindness. Chalmers concludes that humans will never be able to solve the hard problem: Why is our behavior and sensation accompanied by conscious experience? Scientists will never find that in neurons, he argues.How many show-stoppers does it take to stop a show? All the other insurmountable hurdles listed above for molecules-to-man evolution in a materialistic universe remain. But here we see three prominent experts in physics and philosophy of mind, who are non-Christians, stating explicitly that materialism is missing something critical. Two of them say that consciousness is permanently beyond the reach of materialism. So readers do not have to take our word for it that the materialist show is stopped. We would just heighten the hurdle infinitely further by saying that the very use of language by these thinkers requires supernaturalism. Every proposition depends on logic (which must refer to timeless, universal and necessary truths), and morality (which assumes that the speaker desires to share his logic honestly). The materialist show, therefore, is stopped; go to another show. There’s a good one across town about a Creator. It’s called the greatest story ever told. (Visited 528 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

SouthAfrica.info Mobile

first_imgStay connected wherever you are with our new mobile version of SouthAfrica.info.m.southafrica.infoSurfing SouthAfrica.info Mobile is easy: simply go to your phone’s web browser, type in m.southafrica.info, and press “OK” or “Go”.Web-enabling your phoneMost new cellphones are already set up for mobile internet access or WAP (wireless application protocol). If yours is not, you can set it up by following these simple steps (for South African mobile subscribers):VodacomDial *111# from your phone, choose “device setup” and follow the prompts to download the WAP settings to your phone. Alternatively, you can register for Vodacom4me. See Vodacom’s mobile data page. If you still need help, dial Vodacom customer service on 155 from a Vodacom mobile or 082 155 from any other phone.MTNDial *123# from your phone, and select the option to have the WAP settings sent to your cellphone by SMS. When you receive the SMS, all you have to do is select the option to save the settings. See MTN’s WAP FAQ. If you still need help, dial MTN customer service on 173 from your mobile.Cell CSMS SMARTDATA to 084 115 9911 (costs R2) to get set up, or go to Cell C’s mobile internet services page. If you still need help, dial Cell C customer service on 084 140 from your mobile.Virgin MobileOn your handset menu, find the Virgin Mobile menu. It normally appears on the first page of the menu, or under “Applications”. Then choose the option called “Virgin Settings”, and after a few minutes you’ll receive two SMS messages with the settings. Open the messages, select “Save” from the menu, and you’re done. See Virgin Mobile’s data services page. If you still need help, dial Virgin Mobile customer service on 0741 000 123.How much will it cost me?Mobile internet browsing is relatively inexpensive. Remember: you’re not paying for a call, or for the length of time you’re connected. You’re only paying for the data you download. So once you’ve downloaded a web page, you can read it at your leisure – you only start paying again if/when you download another page.last_img read more

Zuma pays tribute to Van Zyl Slabbert

first_img17 May 2010President Jacob Zuma has joined thousands of mourners in expressing his condolences to the family of former South African opposition leader, political analyst and businessman Frederik Van Zyl Slabbert, who passed away on Friday.Van Zyl Slabbert died at the age of 70 after spending some time at a Johannesburg hospital.Zuma said Van Zyl Slabbert’s visionary leadership lived on in the government’s efforts to build and strengthen democracy in South Africa.“He will be remembered as a principled and patriotic South African who served his country diligently,” Zuma said.Van Zyl Slabbert, whose conventional Afrikaner upbringing did not prevent him from recognising the folly of the apartheid system, played a prominent role in the struggle against apartheid.A sociologist by training, his academic work brought him into contact with people of other races at the height of apartheid. This laid the seeds for his opposition to the system, Zuma said.As a Member of Parliament, Van Zyl Slabbert was an outspoken critic of minority rule.“He will be remembered in particular for his courage and foresight in leading a group of white South Africans to Dakar, Senegal in 1987 for talks with the ANC that proved a critical moment on the path towards a negotiated settlement.”Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Field Talk: A Q&A with Providers Supporting Military Families

first_imgDiPietro-Wells, R. (2015). Field Talk: A Q&AField Talk is a monthly blog post sharing the voices of early childhood providers who serve or have served military families of young children with disabilities (birth to 5 years old).  We hope you find it to be educational, personable, and encouraging.This month we talked with Linda Stanfill, OTR/L.  Ms. Stanfill is an occupational therapist and the owner and operator of Cornerstone Pediatric Therapies, LLC in Clarksville, TN.  This interview has been edited for length and clarity.Describe your current role. My role is to provide therapeutic care to children ages birth-12 years and parent education to enhance the self-care, play, and academic skills of their children. My other roles involve managing a small clinic with 6 employees.What’s your favorite part of your current job?My favorite part of my job has always been working with the children and getting to know their families intimately. It has been my great pleasure to be a part of the journey that families find themselves on with their children.Tell us about experiences you have had working with military families.Ninety percent of the children I see are members of military families. Being from a military background myself, both as a child and as an adult, I understand the challenges and benefits of this unique lifestyle especially being separated from your extended family and having limited access to help with life’s daily ups and downs.How did you come to work with military families?I moved to this military town with my family when I was a teenager. Once I began working with children in this area 18 years ago, military families became the most common population referred to my clinic.Describe a rewarding experience working with military families.My experiences with those I serve have been very rewarding. It is my intention to make every family feel like our staff is their extended family offering any support, encouragement or other special needs they may have as they provide for their children, including lending a listening ear when needed, giving Starbucks cards to a frazzled mom, and even using my roadside assistance for a locked car. I do not need to be thanked for what I do but I have many treasured cards from families who have moved away or “graduated” from therapy telling me about the impact our clinic has made in their lives. I am grateful for the unique position I have.Describe a challenging experience working with military families.One of the most challenging aspects of working with families in general, but especially military families, has been keeping the child on a consistent schedule. It is difficult to be far from home with no one to assist with daily challenges. Initially, our families have the perception that we do what we do for monetary gain alone. It takes time for a family to begin to relax and let their guard down, but once they see we are not here to judge but to help, our relationship becomes deeper.From your experience, how are military families similar and different from other types of families? How do you change your practice between families?Military families have more difficulty making it to therapy on time or at their scheduled appointments. They come into the lobby frazzled and with several children in tow. We have mostly mothers who bring their children to therapy. At times they have to arrange transportation with their spouses, dropping them off at work prior to using the car for therapy or errands. We also have mothers whose spouses are deployed and they are in the area without family. We have children whose mothers are deployed and their other parent has a much more difficult time justifying leaving work for their children’s appointments. We try to make life more manageable in any way we can. This means we make every effort to schedule appointments when it is best for the family. We have very flexible families and if we ask one family to adjust their schedule because another family needs that time, military families do not hesitate to do what they can to help.As providers, how can we support military parents who are deployed or away frequently due to trainings/school?  Being aware of the family’s needs outside the realm of therapy is a great start. Adopting a perspective of treating the family as a whole actually has multiple benefits for the child’s progress toward goals. It has to be a partnership to achieve goals that fit for everyone. What we do once or twice a week will not effect nearly the same change as what the parent can do during the remainder of the week.Describe a specific stressor that military families with whom you have worked have shared or experienced.We meet moms who have very little contact with other parents. Many enjoy the company of other moms in the waiting room while their children are in therapy. They receive fellowship, advice and support regarding their child’s disabilities or life in general. Lack of time and management thereof is the biggest source of stress that I see in the parents we service.What “insider” tips or advice do you have for service providers working with military families who have young children with disabilities?Making home exercises manageable and functional for their daily lives will increase the likelihood that exercises will be performed.If you could change or improve one thing for military families with young children with disabilities, what would it be?I would love to see moms become more confident about their abilities to manage their responsibilities. Too often, they second guess themselves or feel judged by others. These moms are amazing at the flexibility and resilience they must have to provide so much of the family’s needs on their own. I wish they could be proud of what they accomplish and not focus so much on the tasks left undone or performed in a “less than perfect” way.What types of resources have you sought out to feel more confident and competent at meeting the specific needs of military families? (e.g., trainings, blog posts, organizations, etc.)I read articles written by colleagues and seek assistance from resources. I get a lot of my child friendly activities from Pinterest because the moms and therapists who post on that website have amazing ideas!This post was written by Robyn DiPietro-Wells & Michaelene Ostrosky, PhD, members of the MFLN FD Early Intervention team, which aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network FD concentration on our website, on Facebook, on Twitter, YouTube, and on LinkedIn.last_img read more

Sesame Street invades Game of Thrones Westworld for good cause

first_img Game of Thrones HBO Westworld 0 Tags There’s a dissonance that comes from seeing beloved Sesame Street muppets engaging with some of television’s deadliest characters. No blood is shed and respect wins the day, giving us feel-good alternate timelines that depart significantly from the grim and gory stories we’re used to.Now can we all just hug? Share your voice Season 8 premiere slays show’s own viewer record Premiere recap: Reunions, dragons and Bran is always watching Game of Thrones returns 57 Photoscenter_img Game of Thrones stars, from season 1 through today The Westworld video is called “Respect World” and features Jeffrey Wright (Bernard) and Evan Rachel Wood (Dolores) sitting inside a lab room when Cookie Monster arrives. He calls Dolores “robot lady” and delivers a lecture on respect illustrated through the sharing of a cookie.  Be sure to stick around for the Sesame Street theme rendered by a player piano manned by the Two-Headed Monster. The footage starts off like a normal Game of Thrones scenario as Cersei and Tyrion argue. Elmo, dressed in armor, shows up to talk the pair through their issues. The video is meant to highlight the importance of respecting one another, even in the case of sworn enemies. It wraps ups with a joke about the meaning of “toast.” While the Sesame Street crossover isn’t canon, those of us pining for a happily-ever-after ending for all the residents of Game of Thrones can pretend it is. Besides, a fuzzy red bug-eyed creature isn’t any more fantastical than a bunch of dragons. Post a comment Enlarge ImageCookie Monster takes his chances in Westworld. Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET Cersei Lannister and Tyrion Lannister might be siblings, but there’s not much love between them. They may never have warm feelings, but they can at least respect each other. They just need a little help from furry red Elmo from Sesame Street.Bernard and Dolores from Westworld also have plenty to say to each other about violent delights having violent ends, but Cookie Monster can convince them to see their conflicts a little differently.HBO airs Game of Thrones, Sesame Street and Westworld. That’s why we now have some unlikely crossovers timed for the children show’s 50th anniversary celebration. One video, titled “Sesame Street: Respect is Coming,” brings together Cersei (Lena Headey), Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) and Elmo to resolve a tense scene.  TV and Movieslast_img read more

India drafts policy to claim stake in Global Internet of Things by

first_imgIndia is drafting a policy to have 5-6% of the $300-billion global Internet of Things (IoT) business by 2020, a top official said on Monday.”A policy framework is in consultation stage for getting a five-six percent share of the global IoT industry, which is estimated to be $300 billion by 2020,” department of electronics and IT secretary JS Deepak said at a summit here.The policy will also enable the sun rise electronics industry to generate $15 billion domestic market over the next five years.”Under IoT, various devices can be connected with internet for sharing data among a specified community,” Deepak said at a national meet on IoT, organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry, the apex body of India Inc.The government has also drawn a roadmap to develop machine-to-machine (M2M) for the IoT industry.”IoT will be central to Digital India structure, with M2M communications around it,” Deepak added.Minister of State for Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation Babulal Supriyo told the delegates that a lot of power could be saved by switching off street lights automatically through connected devices.”IoT is the most happening trend, with the potential to transform all industries and help develop 100 smart cities across the country through contribution from each stakeholder in the country,” Supriyo added.The summit highlighted the proof of concepts and solutions in four sectors — energy, healthcare, transport and manufacturing and the solutions that are replicable in the Indian context.last_img read more

US Senate fails Trumps Obamacare repeal efforts

first_imgSen John McCain (R-AZ) leaves the Senate Chamber after a vote on a stripped-down, or `Skinny Repeal,` version of Obamacare reform on 28 July, 2017 in Washington, DC. Photo: AFPIn a stinging blow to US president Donald Trump, US Senate Republicans failed on Friday to dismantle Obamacare, falling short on a major campaign promise and perhaps ending a seven-year quest by their party to gut the healthcare law.Voting in the early hours, three Republican senators, John McCain, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, crossed party lines to join Democrats in a dramatic 49-to-51 vote to reject a “skinny repeal” bill that would have eliminated some parts of Obamacare.“This is clearly a disappointing moment,” Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell told the Senate floor right after the vote. “The American people are going to regret that we couldn’t find a better way forward.”Trump’s failure sent the dollar down against a basket of other currencies on Friday. [FRX/]The setback leaves him without a major legislative win after more than six months in power, even though Republicans control the White House, Senate and House of Representatives. He had been expected to make rapid changes to healthcare, taxes and infrastructure spending.“3 Republicans and 48 Democrats let the American people down. As I said from the beginning, let Obamacare implode, then deal. Watch!” Trump tweeted after the vote.No Clear GuidanceTrump has repeatedly berated congressional Republicans for being unable to overcome internal divisions to repeal Obamacare, but has offered no legislation himself, nor any clear guidance on what he would like to do about replacing the law.The president has demanded at various times that Obamacare should be allowed to collapse on its own, that it should be repealed without replacement, and that it should be repealed and replaced.The Affordable Care Act, approved by Democrats in 2010, was President Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement. It provided health insurance to millions of uninsured Americans, but was denounced from the outset by Republicans who viewed it as government intrusion on people’s healthcare decisions.The voting down of the bill still leaves uncertainty in the healthcare industry, with insurers not sure how long the Trump administration will continue to make billions of dollars in Obamacare payments that help cover out-of-pocket medical expenses for low-income Americans.Insurers have until September to set rates for 2018 health plans in many marketplaces. Some insurers, including Anthem Inc, Humana and Aetna have pulled out of Obamacare markets, citing the uncertainty over the payments. Others have raised rates by double digits.Republicans hold 52 seats in the 100-seat Senate. McConnell, whose reputation as a master legislative tactician was on the line, could afford to lose support from only two Republican senators, with the tie-breaking vote to be cast by Vice President Mike Pence, who was on the Senate floor.After the House passed a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare in May, McConnell grappled to get Republicans in the Senate to agree on their version of the bill. Conservatives wanted a bill that would substantially gut Obamacare, while moderates were concerned over legislation that could deprive millions of Americans of their healthcare coverage.Republicans released the skinny bill just three hours before voting began. It would have retroactively repealed the Obamacare penalty on individuals who do not purchase health insurance, repealed for eight years a penalty on certain employers who do not provide employees with insurance and repealed a medical device tax until 2020. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that if it became law, 15 million fewer Americans would be insured in 2018 than under existing law.Drama Over MccainAs the vote approached, all eyes in the Senate chamber were on McCain. The former Republican presidential nominee and Vietnam war hero flew back from Arizona after being diagnosed with brain cancer in order to vote, and sat talking to Collins, Murkowski, and Republican Senator Jeff Flake, also from Arizona.Collins and Murkowski both voted this week against more comprehensive Republican proposals to repeal and replace Obamacare and they were both known to have concerns about the pared-down proposal. Trump had criticized Murkowski, tweeting that she had let down the Republican Party and the country.McCain was then approached before voting began by Pence and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who had said on Thursday he would support the skinny repeal bill after reassurances from House Speaker Paul Ryan that it would not become law.After speaking to Pence and Graham, McCain walked across the Senate floor to tell Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and other Democrats that he would vote with them. They laughed as McCain said that the reporters in the balcony could probably read his lips. Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein embraced him.When McCain walked to the front of the Senate chamber to cast his deciding “no” vote, giving a thumbs down, Democrats cheered, knowing the bill would fail.After the bill’s defeat, Schumer told the Senate that it was time to heed McCain’s call this week to return to a more transparent and bipartisan legislative process.Schumer told reporters that he and McCain had been talking four or five times a day this week about the pared-down bill and that McCain had made up his mind on Thursday afternoon. “John McCain is a hero,” Schumer said.Democrats, and some Republicans, said the bill’s failure could present an opportunity for the two parties to work together to fix problematic areas of the Obamacare law without repealing it.“We now have an opportunity to regroup and pull things together through an open and full committee process, bipartisan participation,” Murkowski told reporters.McCain also urged a bipartisan approach, saying in a statement after the vote, “one of the major failures of Obamacare was that it was rammed through Congress by Democrats on a strict-party line basis without a single Republican vote”.Other Republicans said it was time to move on to other legislative priorities such as tax reform.“This was a heavy lift. We should have taken our time. We should have first turned to tax reform and that’s what we’ll do now,” Republican Senator Ron Johnson told reporters.last_img

Rohingya crisis consequence of social hatred Amnesty

first_imgRohingya refugee. Photo: Syful-IslamThe crisis in Myanmar and reported massacres of Rohingya Muslims are the consequence of a society encouraged to hate and a lack of global leadership on human rights, Amnesty International said on Thursday.The human rights group said in its annual report covering 159 countries that “hate-filled rhetoric” by leaders was normalising discrimination against minorities.”We saw the ultimate consequence of a society encouraged to hate, scapegoat and fear minorities laid bare in the horrific military campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya people in Myanmar,” said Salil Shetty, secretary general of Amnesty.Last week, the United States urged the UN Security Council to hold Myanmar’s military accountable for what it said was the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims.Nearly 690,000 Rohingya have fled Rakhine and taken refuge in neighbouring Bangladesh since the Myanmar military launched a crackdown on insurgents at the end of August, according to the UN.More than 6,500 Rohingya are currently trapped on a strip of unclaimed land between Myanmar and Bangladesh.Amnesty said the international community had failed to respond robustly to “crimes against humanity and war crimes from Myanmar to Iraq, South Sudan, Syria and Yemen”.It said that leaders in countries such as the United States, Russia and China were not standing up for civil liberties and instead were “callously undermining the rights of millions”.Amnesty said president Donald Trump had taken backward steps on human rights that were setting a dangerous precedent. Shetty described his move to ban people from several Muslim-majority countries in January last year as “transparently hateful”.Last year’s report accused Trump of “poisonous” rhetoric.Free speech will be a key issue for those concerned about human rights this year, the report said.Amnesty said its staff were arrested at an unprecedented rate in Turkey in 2017, which along with Egypt and China was also among the biggest jailors of journalists.Two Reuters reporters in Myanmar were arrested while investigating the killing of Rohingya Muslims. Court proceedings are ongoing.”In 2018, we cannot take for granted that we will be free to gather together in protest or to criticise our governments. In fact, speaking out is becoming more dangerous,” Shetty said.Read More: Myanmar ‘bulldozing Rohingya mass grave to hide evidence’last_img read more