“Sub Zero” Lewis fights in Barbados tonight

first_imgRamel ‘Sub Zero’ Lewis will be making an effort to end 2016 on a positive note tonight when he clashes with Barbadian Christopher ‘Shaka’ Henry in an eight-round junior middleweight main bout on a Pro-Am Dinner-Boxing show at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre in St Michael, Barbados. Also on the card will be amateur bantamweight boxer Felice Groves.Lewis and Henry know each other as they have been together in the Wray and Nephew Contender series, but they never met before. Henry last fought here in 2015 when he lost by retirement in the fourth round in a bout against Tsetsi Davis.Lewis fought in the Contender series this year, and after defeating Fred Muhammad by technical knockout in his first fight, he lost to Michael Gardener on points. He has always been a Contender favourite because of his aggressive style of boxing and reached the finals in 2012, where he lost on points to Donovan ‘Police’ Campbell over 10 rounds.Before leaving Jamaica on Wednesday, Lewis said he was confident of victory.”I have been training hard for this fight, and I will be going in with one goal, and that is to win. Shaka is a good fighter, but I am going to pressure him all the way,” Lewis said.A close, hard-fought contest is expected.last_img read more

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TRC Reflections: Ten Years Later (Part III)

first_img“The first step towards reconciliation is the truth”. – Kristen CibelliSince its completion and presentation to the Government of Liberia in December 2009, the TRC final report has generated much controversy and public debate that continues today. The controversy and debate have centered mainly on those aspects of the report concerning prosecution and lustration. Largely lost in the debate are other important issues relevant to reconciliation, reparations and the consolidation of peace in Liberia.What seems to be forgotten is the fact that aside from narrative accounts of the conflict, the TRC also developed a statistical version of information derived from statements given to the TRC in order to provide deeper insight into the violence that occurred during the 14-yr. civil war..Ten (10) years later, following its release in 2009, a regenerated public interest in having the TRC recommendations implemented and the potential difficulties associated with the retrieval of facts to enhance possible future prosecutorial efforts, underscore that there is a need to provide deeper insight into the TRC report and enhance public understanding of it (TRC report) in a wider perspective.Currently, efforts are underway to pass legislation leading to the establishment of a war and economic crimes court for Liberia. Towards this end, the Liberia National Bar Association led by its President Cllr. Tiawon Gongloe, has already completed draft legislation for the establishment of such a court in Liberia.The commencement of any prosecutorial efforts in Liberia whether in fulfillment of the TRC recommendations or not is more likely than not to fuel intense public longing for a wholistic understanding of the TRC report and its recommendations. The TRC, in its desire to provide statistical analysis to the large volume of information it was generating from statement givers, engaged the services of the non-profit US based Benetech Human Rights Data Analysis Group (HRDAG) on a three-year contractual arrangement to help clarify through statistical interpretations, the history of violence and conflict in Liberia.Under the project, the Benetech team analyzed more than 17,000 victim and witness statements freely given to the TRC The analyzed data was compiled into a report entitled: “Descriptive Statistics From Statements to the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission”.The report is included as an annex to the TRC report. It is important to reemphasize that the HRDAG is a non-profit organization and its support to the work of the TRC was made possible through the support of the United States Department of State Bureau for Democracy Human Rights and Labor including several other donors listed in the report.The team was led by a young American woman, Kristen Cibelli. Although a non-Liberian, she had not remained unaffected by the controversy generated following the release of the report. A year later, following the submission of the TRC report, and in the wake of the huge controversy it generated, she penned her reflections on the report, which can rightly be considered as her contribution to the national discourse.In 2010 she wrote in a blog the following:“The TRC’s final report has been covered extensively in the press. The coverage has focused, however, not on the bulk of content in the report but on the Commission’s controversial recommendation to ban Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf from holding future political office. Understandably, this issue has become quite controversial in reports throughout the media, including the blogosphere. But since so many years of work have gone into the TRC’s report, it is also useful to reflect on the broader role of the TRC in Liberia as well as truth commissions around the world. HRDAG has now worked with nine truth commissions over the past 15 years and we have given this question careful consideration”.In this blog entry, I talk about how we analyzed the data from the Liberian TRC, some reactions to the TRC’s final report, and offer thoughts looking beyond the current public debate to the broader role and historical value of the TRC’s work.How We Analyzed Data For the Liberian TRCDuring our three-year partnership with the TRC, the HRDAG team provided the statistical expertise to transform information from the TRC statements into scientifically defensible, quantitative information. This process was vitally important because it created a historical record of victims and violations based on the thousands of statements. This data helped the Commission determine the proportional responsibility of specific factions and individuals for the most serious crimes during the TRC’s mandate period, 1979 to 2003.As manager of the project, I worked with our team to apply our deep statistical expertise throughout the many stages of the project. I made numerous visits to the TRC beginning in 2006 when the Commission was inaugurated. I also had the opportunity to live in Liberia for six months last year (2009). This enabled me to work closely with my TRC colleagues who analyzed the statements collected in Liberia and more than 1,100 additional statements collected from diaspora Liberians – Liberians who left the country.This was a monumental task. Each statement had to be analyzed carefully to identify the “countable units” — violations, victims and perpetrators. That information was then transcribed onto forms – a process known as “coding.” Information from the coding forms for each statement was then entered into a specialized database. This effort was enormous and the TRC staff rose to challenge; nearly all of the statements collected in Liberia plus over 1,100 statements collected from diaspora Liberians were coded and entered into a secure database.To put this accomplishment into perspective, it is helpful to compare it with previous truth commissions. For example, South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission collected about 21,000 statements, just about 1,000 more than the TRC collected from Liberians living inside and outside the country. That may sound comparable – except when one considers that South Africa’s population is nearly fourteen times larger than Liberia’s.The Liberian TRC was also the first to collect statements from members of the diaspora community – in this case Liberians living in Ghana, Nigeria, the United States and Europe. Many tens of thousands of Liberians fled Liberia’s borders seeking refuge in neighboring countries and in the US and Europe during the war — By the end of 2003 an estimated 297,000 Liberians were living outside of the country. Not all of the statements from diaspora Liberians, and those living inside the country, could be coded and entered for inclusion in the statistical analysis due to resource constraints.Since the scientific accuracy of the data is vital to the credibility of the TRC report, it is also important to consider the care that went into coding. When more than one person is working on coding, it is important to monitor a measurement known as inter-rater reliability (IRR). IRR measures whether different coders, given the same source material, produce the same quantitative output (e.g. the same number of victims and the same number and type of violations).The coding team in Liberia achieved an overall average of 89% agreement on coding exercises throughout their work on TRC statements. This is considered a very high rate of IRR – and ensures that the information entered into the database is more than the individual interpretations of each of the coders.The staff in the Coding and Database Unit remained dedicated and hardworking in the face of their daunting task and often less then ideal working conditions. You can read a summary of the report and more about our methodology here. I was inspired by the staff’s ongoing commitment to processing as many stories presented to the TRC as possible — as accurately as possible. They felt that their work was an important service to the people of Liberia and I feel fortunate to have had the chance to work with them on this historic task.Reaction to the TRC ReportThe TRC’s Final Report has provoked heated debate around the world, most of which has not centered on the statistical data. Much of the press coverage of the TRC Final Report — both national and international — has focused on the TRC’s recommendation regarding President Sirleaf. President Sirleaf was not accused of having committed any direct human rights abuses, and therefore her name does not appear in the database of violations compiled by the TRC. It is extraordinary, however, for a truth commission to make such a determination about a current sitting head of state and this decision could have far-reaching consequences for Liberia.The TRC has called clearly for prosecution of those the Commission found to be responsible for the most serious crimes. This decision has inspired much debate about whether or not this is the right approach for Liberia and if this is the direction in which Liberians want to go. Clearly this is a choice for Liberians to make. We are scientists. We do not do not judge the data, we provide the expertise to gather quantitative data from the statements and analyze this information.However, interpreting statistics can be quite complicated. So it is very important to be clear about what the numbers represent and what they don’t — particularly when they are being used to support an argument in a sensitive debate. In that light, I would like to clarify one misunderstanding that has been repeated in the press. When asked what is needed to bring reconciliation to the country, 60% of statement-givers to the TRC mentioned, “forgive and forget” among possible other responses. Some sources in the press have cited this finding but have incorrectly suggested that it represents the views of all Liberians.To clarify, the statistic does not come from a random population-based survey. Instead, it is drawn from the responses of statement-givers to an open-ended set of supplemental questions included in the TRC’s statement form. As an analyst, I want to point out that the statistic represents the views of 17,416 statement-givers who elected to give a statement. But it does not statistically represent the views of 3.4 million Liberians as a whole.It is, however, interesting to note that the majority of Liberians who gave statements to the TRC embraced forgiveness despite the fact that they were direct victims or witnesses of atrocities and face the greatest challenge in forgiving those responsible for their suffering.Looking Beyond Immediate ControversyMy hope is that the current controversy surrounding the TRC report does not obscure the larger historical truths – and the voices of more than 18,000 victims and witnesses who gave the statements that we analyzed. Truth commissions help nations understand the impact of past policies – and coup d’états – such as those that occurred in Liberia. We hope that Liberians and others will study the findings carefully and consider the cost of violent regime change on the civilian population. Truth commissions can help direct not just decision makers – but entire nations – toward greater peace and prosperity. Our hope is that the collective experiences of those who engaged with the TRC are not lost in the debate.For instance, our analysis uncovered important facts about mass human rights violations in Liberia. Forced displacement was the most commonly reported violation during the conflict — comprising about a third of the 163,615 total reported violations. Statements to the TRC documented more than 28,000 killings, the second most commonly reported violation.According to the data, Charles Taylor’s group of combatants, the National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL), was responsible for more than three times the number of reported violations as the next closest perpetrator group. Surprisingly, older men were at greater risk for being killed or subject to looting violations than younger men. In contrast, the data suggests that young men, particularly teens 15 to 19 were at the greatest risk for forced recruitment as combatants.By supporting the effective capture, preservation and analysis of statements relating to human rights violations, the TRC has been able to tell a broader truth about Liberia’s conflict. An anonymized version of the TRC’s data from statements collected in Liberia, and among diaspora Liberians, will be published on the TRC and HRDAG websites. We encourage scholars and other analysts to extend the analysis and compare statistical results from other sources of data with the information reported by the statement-givers.The findings in the TRC report offer a new perspective on the history of Liberia and provide a context for how and why certain types of violence occurred. Ultimately, this analysis provides a deeper understanding of the possible causes behind the patterns of violence. Before people can be forgiven, we must first understand what they have done. The first step towards reconciliation is the truth.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Oil and Gas rights sale today

first_imgIt’s unlikely we’ll find out before late tomorrow morning, but today’s sale of natural gas and petroleum rights could push this year’s bonus bids total, past last year’s 12 month total.The eight month 2010 calendar year total is over 760 million, and it would take a September sale of about 133 million, to pass the 2009 total of just under 893 million.With four months left in the year, 2010 could also become the third calender year, in which bonus bids exceed one billion dollars.- Advertisement -71 parcels are being offered today, covering more than 35,000 hectares.last_img read more

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Freeway Series: Angels deliver big hit in win

first_imgDodgers starter Randy Wolf, a product of El Camino Real High of Woodland Hills and Pepperdine, made his Dodger Stadium debut as a member of the home team and had an inconsistent three-inning effort. Wolf struck out two in the first inning, then allowed three runs on four hits during a second inning in which he didn’t seem to be fooling anyone. Wolf retired the side in order in the third. The start will be easy to dismiss, because it will be forgotten by the time Wolf makes his regular-season debut Tuesday. “He was making some good pitches but he was just missing with a number of pitches,” Little said. Both teams played as many starters as possible. The Dodgers were without Rafael Furcal (sprained ankle) and new father Nomar Garciaparra while the Angels played without Chone Figgins (broken finger). It was a mixed-bag night for the Dodgers’ newcomers. Center fielder Juan Pierre singled but was caught stealing second; left fielder Luis Gonzalez singled and scored in the second inning. As for Wolf, the Angels hit him in the second, when Maicer Izturis, Gary Matthews Jr. and Orlando Cabrera hit consecutive doubles to give the Angels a 3-0 lead in support of starter Hector Carrasco. Carrasco allowed one run in three innings, Orlando Cabrera had three hits and Matthews made a sliding, inning-ending catch in center field with runners on first and second in the second inning. The Dodgers’ lone run came in the second inning, when Andre Ethier singled home Gonzalez. Wolf, who allowed three runs on five hits, walked two and struck out four, was relieved by Chad Billingsley, who threw three shutout innings and allowed one hit to go with one walk and one strikeout. A highlight took place in the seventh, when the Dodgers’ Brady Clark hit into a triple play. Clark lined out to Kendrick, who then stepped on second base and threw to first base. Joe Beimel, the Dodgers’ top left-handed reliever, allowed three runs in the eighth. The Dodgers started removing starters in the fourth inning while the Angels waited until the seventh. rich.hammond@dailynews.com (818) 713-3611160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “It was a young kid so he was just trying to make an impression,” Lieberthal said. “I don’t know about (it being) a dirty play. I like to play hard and it would have been bang-bang (with a good throw).” Dodgers manager Grady Little said he had no issues with the hit, and in the other dugout sat Mike Scioscia, who was on the receiving end of a few brutal hits during his career as a Dodger catcher. “Mike’s a tough guy,” Scioscia said. “He’s going to hang in there. He’s trying to make a play at the plate. Nick, he’s trying to make a team. He’s trying to score. That’s what happens. Give both those guys credit.” The plate collision, part of a three-run eighth-inning that pushed the Angels’ winning margin to five runs, was the major highlight of a game that allowed the Angels to continue their Freeway Series domination. Spring-training bragging rights don’t count for much, but for what it’s worth, the Angels have dominated the crosstown series of late, with a 8-0-2 record in the last 10 meetings dating to 2003. For those who think spring training games lack intensity, meet Mike Lieberthal. Lieberthal, the Dodgers’ backup catcher, was on the rough end of a brutal collision at home plate in the eighth inning of the Angels’ 6-1 victory over the Dodgers in front of 29,841 Thursday at Dodger Stadium. After a single by Howie Kendrick, the Angels’ Nick Gorneault, a rookie headed to the minors after this weekend, came barreling around third base and appeared to be out by a wide margin. But when Lieberthal couldn’t get a clean throw to the plate, Gorneault led with his shoulder and bashed into Lieberthal. Gorneault scored and the game paused for a couple minutes while the Dodgers made sure Lieberthal had all his faculties. Other than a slight headache, he reported no problems and no real ill feelings. last_img read more

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Fred gives Shakhtar advantage over Roma

first_img0Shares0000Turkish youngster Cengiz Under marked his Champions League debut for Roma with a well-taken 41st-minute opener after latching onto Edin Dzeko’s clever through ball.KHARKIV, Ukraine, Feb 21 – Shakhtar Donetsk fought back from a goal down as Fred’s free-kick gave the Ukrainians a 2-1 victory over Roma on Wednesday in their Champions League last 16, first leg.Turkish youngster Cengiz Under marked his Champions League debut for Roma with a well-taken 41st-minute opener after latching onto Edin Dzeko’s clever through ball. Shakhtar were much-improved after the break, though, and Facundo Ferreyra ran clear to slot under onrushing goalkeeper Alisson Becker.The hosts completed the turnaround in style with 19 minutes to play, as Fred curled a free-kick in off the crossbar.But an extraordinary goalline block from Roma substitute Bruno Peres to deny Ferreyra in the final minute of injury-time kept the tie finely balanced ahead of the second leg at the Stadio Olimpico on March 13.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

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GARDAI AT SCENE OF MAJOR ROAD CRASH

first_imgGARDAI have sealed off the Buncrana to Derry road near Burnfoot today after a road traffic accident.Diversions are in place.The crash happened shortly after 3am. A 33-year-old man was rushed to Altnagelvin hospital to be treated for serious injuries. His injuries are not thought to be life-threatening. GARDAI AT SCENE OF MAJOR ROAD CRASH was last modified: March 14th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Women’s Tennis Hosts Wichita State and Missouri State This Weekend

first_imgWichita State rolls into Des Moines on a six-match winning streak and upset No. 35 Tulsa earlier this week. The Shockers have a 11-7 overall record and started the MVC season 2-0 after beating Southern Illinois and Evansville last month. The Bulldogs enters into the weekend with an 8-6 record and are coming off a tough 4-3 setback at Northern Iowa on April 1. Drake boasts a 7-2 home record and has won its last four match in the friendly confines of the Roger Knapp Tennis Center. The Bulldogs have four players with seven or more wins and are led by junior Summer Brills with a 9-2 mark. Sophomores Joely Lomas and Kenya William each have eight victories, while Tess Herder holds a 7-2 record. Missouri State is 5-11 overall and 0-1 in MVC matches. The Bears will square off against Northern Iowa on Saturday before taking on the Bulldogs on Sunday. Aly Darter is the only Bear with a winning record with a 9-7 mark. DES MOINES, Iowa – The Drake University women’s tennis team is set to host No. 50 Wichita State on Saturday at noon and Missouri State on Sunday at 11 a.m. at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center. Drake travels to Illinois next week for a match at Bradley on April 14 and at Illinois State on April 15. Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more

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Monkey See, Monkey No Comprendo

first_imgIn 19th century mythology, a million monkeys might type the works of Shakespeare by chance, given millions of years.  But monkeys would make lousy computer programmers, because they cannot understand the “if-then” construction.  Comparison studies on humans and monkeys showed that while the monkeys could be trained to recognize when one word is followed by another, they cannot get the rules of recursive grammar into their heads.  Trainers tried to get them to follow a simple rule, such as one to three words spoken by a male trainer are followed by the same pattern of words spoken by a female trainer.  Since human volunteers had no such difficulty, even when previously unfamiliar with the rule, the scientists deduced that recursive logic is a uniquely human trait.  New Scientist discusses the interpretation of David Premack, a renowned primate language expert:Mastery of the underlying rule of recursion is the key to human flexibility, Premack believes, allowing humans to think in the abstract, use metaphors and comprehend concepts such as time.  It probably arose as the brain evolved into a more complex organ, but is not located in a single brain region.The study by Hauser and Fitch was published in last week’s Science,1 along with commentary by Premack.2    In their report, MSNBC News tantalized with “How humans got the gift of gab,” but failed to satisfy: “Language is at the very core of what makes us human, though how we evolved this ability has provoked intense debate.”  Somehow, it evolved (they don’t quite know how), but whatever happened, it made all the difference:Whatever it is about the brain that allows such linguistic flexibility may also be key to the human imagination, according to Premack.  Unlike other animals, which specialize in various skills, humans are supremely adaptable, able to learn new tasks and develop new technologies.  “Human intelligence and evolution are the only flexible processes on Earth capable of producing endless solutions to the problems confronted by living creatures,” Premack writes.1Fitch and Hauser, “Computational Constraints on Syntactic Processing in a Nonhuman Primate,” Science 01/16/2003, 10.1126/science.1089401.2David Premack, “Is Language the Key to Human Intelligence?” Science 01/16/2003, 10.1126/science.1093993.That line makes Premack winner of Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week.  The BBC News is runner-up with its very misleading headline, “Monkeys ‘grasp basic grammar’,” which the body of the article debunks.  But hold the presses!  Should we give it instead to National Geographic News for this line attributed to Premack?  “Evolution, being endlessly clever, might produce words that don’t require teaching, but until it does, it is not clear how any species other than humans could evolve language.”    The whole experiment is pretty suspect.  How can a trainer know what a monkey is thinking just by watching bodily reactions, when their little pea-brains are in a constant state of flux, switching attention to whatever provides instant gratification?  The distance between their comprehension and that of speaking human is enormous, with no intermediates.  Yet article after article just assumes that mindless processes of evolution bridged this gap somehow.    Don’t you just get sick of it?  The evolutionists blow smoke rings around readers’ necks that strangle by suggestion.  There’s nothing of substance here to choke off debate, but suckers are so awestruck by the wizards that they pass out as if slain in the spirit of Charlie.  It’s all a trick.    Evolution is an idol, savvy?  Having no eyes, it sees not, and having no ears, it hears not.  Evolution has no power to evolve language or any complex system.  It is not, standing alongside human intelligence, “a flexible process that can produce endless solutions to problems.”  This is playing word games; it’s an unmitigated myth based on association and bluffing.  Natural selection is the opposite of intelligence.  It is the opposite of problem-solving.  It is the opposite of flexibility.  It says “survive or perish” but not “evolve or perish”, because it contains no mechanism for producing beneficial variation.  And you want beneficial variation to come from mutations – mistakes?  Get a life.    Evolutionists never explain how natural selection could do such a thing as evolving recursive language skill; they merely claim that it did do it.  If you can’t accept it, well obviously, you just don’t have the faith, brother.  Don’t put your faith in an idol that is toppling (10/14/2003).(Visited 10 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Body of activist unclaimed for over 16 months: advocate

first_imgPanaji: The Goa State Human Rights Commission (GSHRC) has summoned the Chief Secretary, the Director General of Police, and the Dean of the State-owned Goa Medical College hospital (GMC) on April 3, to explain why the body of Father Bismarque Dias is in the GMC morgue for over 16 months.The commission issued the directive after an activist and advocate, Aires Rodrigues, filed a complaint on Wednesday stating that the body of Fr. Bismarque — a social activist, who was found dead at St. Estevam in North Goa — has been in the “unhygienic and regularly malfunctional” morgue at Bambolim since November 7, 2015.Mr. Rodrigues said the body is not required for any further examination as all the forensic tests have been done and the viscera report has been received. He also said Fr. Bismarque must be given a fitting farewell and laid to rest with due respect as he had selflessly toiled for Goa.Fr. Bismarque’s family had declined to accept the body, disagreeing with the police’s findings, which had showed that he had drowned. They suspect that Fr. Bismarque was murdered.last_img read more

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