Matt Chapman hits go-ahead homer in ninth inning, Athletics beat Angels

first_imgANAHEIM —  Matt Chapman hit a two-run home run, his 35th of the year, to give the A’s a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday night.The A’s looked a bit tired in Anaheim. They were 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position through the game’s first three innings.Frankie Montas, back from his 80-game suspension, was doing his part. Mining traffic as best he could, he navigated through a scoring threat in the third thanks to Matt Olson’s glove on Kole Calhoun’s chopper, then a threat …last_img

The World Against I.D.

first_imgThe Inter-Academy Panel (IAP) on International Issues, a global network of scientific academies, has issued a statement endorsing cosmic and biological evolution.  It urges “decision makers, teachers, and parents to educate all children about the methods and discoveries of science and to foster an understanding of the science of nature.”  Though the statement does not specifically mention intelligent design or creation, a report on BBC News says its release “follows fierce debate about whether so-called intelligent design (ID) should be taught in biology courses in schools, mainly in the US.”  It opens with this veiled reference to opposition: “We, the undersigned Academies of Sciences, have learned that in various parts of the world, within science courses taught in certain public systems of education, scientific evidence, data, and testable theories about the origins and evolution of life on Earth are being concealed, denied, or confused with theories not testable by science.”  The document lists 68 member societies, including the US National Academy of Sciences.    Next, it calls for “evidence-based” teaching about at least four subjects that, while having details still open to question, “scientific evidence has never contradicted” – (1) The Earth formed 4.5 billion years ago in a universe 11-15 billion years old, (2) Earth’s geology and environments have continued to change since its formation, (3) Life appeared at least 2.5 billion years ago, followed by the evolution of photosynthetic organisms which transformed the atmosphere, and4. Since its first appearance on Earth, life has taken many forms, all of which continue to evolve, in ways which palaeontology and the modern biological and biochemical sciences are describing and independently confirming with increasing precision.  Commonalities in the structure of the genetic code of all organisms living today, including humans, clearly indicate their common primordial origin.The statement affirms a view of science based on observation, formulation of testable hypotheses leading to theories, and prediction.  It says science is an open-ended process subject to correction and expansion, and that questions of value and purpose are outside its scope.  The BBC has made the full text available.One can imagine that in the time of the Reformation, every Catholic academy across the Latin world would have unanimously risen up to condemn Luther.  The list of signatories would have been impressive.  It must have been a fearful moment for Luther to stand alone against the tidal wave of illustrious scholars and officials arrayed against him, and say, “Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.”    Don’t be impressed by the number of signatories to this dogmatic document (that, ironically, claims science is not dogmatic; if they really believed that, they would recognize the possibility that evolution is wrong and listen seriously to the claims it has been falsified).  A position statement issued by the upper echelons of management of a scientific society no more reflects the views of all scientists than a labor union’s political endorsement reflects the rank-and-file workers.  How many of them even knew this document was being published?  Most of the scientists in those societies don’t even study evolutionary biology in their day-to-day work, and probably many who accept evolution don’t feel that strongly about it.  Probably one or a few activist leaders at a meeting of these academies wrote the statement and pushed it through for a vote; perhaps it included “Yves Quere, co-chair of the Inter Academy Panel on International Issues,” whom the BBC article quoted: “So in this statement we say you cannot teach this to children, it is wrong.”  Here’s a guy with an agenda.    Even if I.D. is a minority view at this time (but not among the public, only among Big Science organizations), science does not advance by majority vote.  As we saw from the case of Grote Reber (02/06/2003), the Lone Ranger is sometimes the good guy.  There have been many instances in the history of science where a maverick had to fight long and hard against entrenched ideas – sometimes for decades, facing official opposition that was sometimes strident and personal.  What’s important in science is not to be popular, but to be right.  There are notable nonconformists within the scientific societies.  Though pro-ID letters from scientists are routinely censored by most mainstream journals, Evolution News found a well-written letter to the Journal of Clinical Investigation that should be held up alongside the IAP document and any other saber-rattling position papers attacking intelligent design.  Read it and see who is taking the reasonable scientific position on this issue.    The IAP statement, despite its self-righteous condemnation of anything that questions evolution, is noteworthy for what it does not say.  The BBC article ended with a statement by Steve Fuller, who promotes teaching the controversy.  Fuller thought it was “pretty mild” and “really doesn’t hit on the kinds of issues that would separate either contesting schools within evolutionary theory or evolution versus intelligent design.”  It lacks, for instance, any reference to a naturalistic mechanism – including Darwin’s – that could lead from hydrogen to humans.  Once you scrape away the rust of evolutionary assumptions masquerading as evidence, there’s really not much left to argue with: the universe appeared, life appeared, photosynthesis appeared, geology changes and science should be falsifiable.  Remove the E-word here and there, and nothing is offered to demonstrate all living things arose from a common ancestor by an undirected natural process.  (For a refutation of the argument from similarity, see Icons of Evolution by Jonathan Wells.)    The statement also attacks a straw man.  No ID-friendly school board or organization is advocating removing the subject of evolution in the public schools, or replacing it with young-earth creationism.  Where has Quere been?  The whole controversy is about teaching the controversy and removing the artificial moat that protects Charlie’s castle from monitoring by independent inspectors.  One would think that scientific societies, committed to an open-ended process of inquiry and the formulation of falsifiable theories, would welcome the scrutiny.  So what if Darwin’s ideas are found to be false?  Great; science marches on.  So what if intelligent design wins?  Great; now we have another paradigm for trying to make sense of the natural world.  What’s the problem?  The only people working to conceal, deny and confuse the issue are the Darwiniacs.    Official denunciations like this suggest an underlying insecurity.  There would not be a need if evolution were so obvious.  Instead of engaging their opponents calmly with rational discussion, they entrench themselves behind their castle walls and talk tough.  Wouldn’t it be cool to lob boxes of Ann Coulter’s Godless over the wall, just for the fun of watching their pointy heads turn red and explode.(Visited 9 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Chhattisgarh panchayats to have disabled quota

first_imgThe Chhattisgarh Cabinet has approved the nomination of at least one differently abled member to each panchayat, if not elected, making it the only State to have such members in all panchayats. “Differently abled people constitute 6% of the population of Chhattisgarh. As promised in the jan ghoshna patra [manifesto], we have taken the landmark step of strengthening their voices at the grassroots level,” said T.S. Singh Deo, State Panchayati Raj Minister. ‘Elected or nominated’“Every panchayat will now have differently abled members, either elected or nominated,” he said. If differently abled members are not elected through the electoral process, then one member, either male or female, would be nominated as a panch. And as for janpads and zilla panchayats, the State government would nominate two such members, one male and one female, to them. During a meeting at the house of Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, the Cabinet approved the amendment to the State Panchayat Raj Act, 1993. The proposals will be tabled in the Vidhan Sabha, where the Congress holds 68 of the 90 seats. This means, said Mr. Deo, the State would have 11,000 people with special needs as members of panchayats. “We strongly believe that no one should be left behind. We are committed to empowering the common people. This is the top most priority of the Congress government in Chhattisgarh.” Meanwhile, the Cabinet also decided to drop the educational qualifications eligibility criterion for contesting panchayat elections. “It is mandatory for a contestant for the position of a panch to be at least a Class V pass, and above that Class VIII pass. In the three-tier panchayati raj system, only being literate would be enough to contest elections,” said a note from the government.last_img read more

$300 Million to Boost Community Tourism Activities

first_img Speaking at the official launch of M-Academy at the Chinese Benevolent Association, Old Hope Road in St. Andrew on April 11, Mr. Bartlett said the money will be spent in 63 communities across the country to have small events and activities to attract more visitors, and increase the earnings of small tourism suppliers. Story Highlights Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says $300 million has been budgeted to boost community tourism activities across the island.Speaking at the official launch of M-Academy at the Chinese Benevolent Association, Old Hope Road in St. Andrew on April 11, Mr. Bartlett said the money will be spent in 63 communities across the country to have small events and activities to attract more visitors, and increase the earnings of small tourism suppliers.“Once you create that capacity within the communities to be able to convert knowledge into material things and events, you are going to invite tourism into the community, and that’s what I’m about.It’s about increasing growth and increasing development, so tourism is not about the coastline but the experiences are in the communities, and so we want to build out that capacity,” he said.The Minister further added that the building out of more tourism activities is critical and will redound to the continued development of the industry.“We are going to work with the Tourism Linkages Network, because we have budgets to deal with that… to help to build capacity within communities,” he said.The primary objective of the Tourism Linkages Network is to increase the consumption of goods and services that can be competitively sourced locally. It also aims to create employment while generating and retaining the country’s foreign exchange earning potential.In the meantime, the Minister lauded the creation of the M-Academy, adding that “it seeks to build out another tier of skill sets which is so important in broadening the capacity of Jamaicans.”M-Academy is a Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) and Main Event Entertainment Group partnership. The main objective of the initiative is to train persons in various aspects of event production.The programme will last for six months with the trainees drawn from the 18 communities targeted by JSIF. Training for the first cohort of approximately 100 persons is slated to commence in May. “Once you create that capacity within the communities to be able to convert knowledge into material things and events, you are going to invite tourism into the community, and that’s what I’m about. Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says $300 million has been budgeted to boost community tourism activities across the island.last_img read more

Delhi CM orders probe into Zakir Nagar fire incident

first_imgNew Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday ordered a probe into the southeast Delhi’s Zakir Nagar fire incident in which six people, including three children, were killed and 13 were injured. The AAP chief, who visited the spot where the fire broke out, said all lapses behind the massive fire will be probed. According to an official, the chief minister also announced a compensation of Rs five lakh each for the families of the deceased and Rs two lakh each to the injured. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ “All lapses behind the massive fire will be probed,” Kejriwal said. Eight fire tenders were rushed to the spot to douse the blaze which broke out in a four-storey residential building on Tuesday. The fire had occurred due to short circuit in the electric metres of the building housing 13 flats, officials said. Around seven cars and 19 motorcycles were also destroyed in the blaze. The deceased were identified as Zoha (34), Nagmi (30), Arbaaz (6), Amna (8) and Zikra (8). Their bodies have been kept at the AIIMS. The sixth body is yet to be identified and has been kept at the Safdarjung Hospital.last_img read more

Just For Laughs ComedyPRO and CBC Comedy TeamUp for CBC Comedy Originals

first_img Twitter Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment “Just For Laughs ComedyPRO has been the birthplace of several successful CBC Comedy Original Series, says Paul Ronca, Director of Industry & Special Events Programming and Strategic Partner Development at Just For Laughs. “It seems only natural that we should be partnering with the CBC to develop this program as a platform for Canadian comedy talent.””We’re looking forward to collaborating with Just For Laughs again this year to find the best ideas and comedy content in Canada,” said Michelle Daly, senior director, comedy, CBC scripted content. “We’ve seen huge success with the shows we’ve launched to date and an open-forum pitch event like this is the perfect place to find more.”Series that have originated from Just For Laughs ComedyPRO include hit CBC digital original comedies My 90-Year-Old-Roommate and Newborn Moms.All interested applicants will be considered for both the CBC Comedy Originals Pitch as well as the relevant short or long-form Stand Up & Pitchpitch programs. The deadline for Stand Up & Pitch has been extended to May 15 to accommodate the new program. Guidelines are posted at https://sp2.img.hsyaolu.com.cn/wp-shlf1314/B2046/IMG13491.jpg” alt=”last_img” /> read more