IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market South Bend looks to save two failing schools before the state takes them over WhatsApp Previous articleMan injured in Thursday morning shooting in ElkhartNext articleNew budget plan for Michigan would hep bail out tax losses in Benton Harbor Tommie Lee Facebook Twitter Google+ Facebook Pinterest By Tommie Lee – February 11, 2021 0 550 WhatsApp Pinterest Twitter (Photo supplied/South Bend Community School Corporation) The South Bend School Board is considering options to keep the state from taking over a pair of failing schools.Changes are being considered for Marquette Montessori and Muessel Elementary Schools next year.WSBT reports that the two schools have had four years of failing state grades and the district is trying to avoid a state takeover of the schools. The district told parents they have no plans to close either school, but a redesign is being considered.A vote is planned for March 1 to finalize the future direction of the struggling schools. Google+
Colombia’s longstanding conflict against FARC terrorists is beginning to look less like an all-out military conflict and more like a government crackdown on organized crime. That’s the word from Colombian Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón, who says the Marxist-oriented Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia [Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC] is on the run and has been changing its tactics. “They are moving closer to dissolution, but also this brings us a challenge,” Pinzón said. “We are hitting FARC on the head and eliminating the way they operate nationwide, but they are becoming more localized.” Pinzón’s April 29 appearance at the National Defense University’s William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies in Washington, came as Colombian and FARC leaders met in Havana for an eighth round of peace talks that began last year. The FARC — which both Washington and Bogotá classify as a terrorist group — claims to represent Colombia’s rural poor against exploitation by the country’s elite. But Colombian government officials have long denounced FARC’s tactics, which include kidnapping, drug smuggling, extortion and violence. The conflict is deeply entrenched and has killed more than 600,000 people in the past five decades, according to international human rights organizations. Pinzón: FARC becoming less predictable Pinzón said the FARC gradually has become less predictable and less visible, which makes it more difficult to track than an organized, high-profile military movement. “They are more like a mafia,” he said. “They are more dispersed and less concentrated in rural areas. They are using casual dress, smaller guns and cellphones. They are not using all the weapons and uniforms they used to, and they are often in civilian clothes and sometimes unarmed to prevent military action.” He added: “They are more like a group of criminal bands, but we are defeating those criminal bands one by one.” Violent gun battles remain commonplace, even though overall fighting between FARC guerrillas and government forces is less intense than it used to be. On May 5, barely a week after Pinzón’s speech at the Perry Center, army forces killed seven FARC rebels in the southwestern department of Nariño, near Colombia’s border with Ecuador. Juan Carlos Palou, an official of the Ideas for Peace Foundation think tank in Bogotá, agrees with that assessment. “As a political force, “the FARC remains very weak, having isolated themselves through the use of increasing levels of sporadic violence and links with Mexican drug-trafficking cartels,” he said, suggesting this has alienated FARC leaders from their traditional base of support. “It has created a bottleneck effect, pushing against their immediate transition into local or national politics,” said Palou. Pinzón urges Washington not to give up the fight now Pinzón encouraged his audience — about 100 Washington-based military and civilian defense officials — to help maintain U.S. financial backing for Colombia. “If there is a time in which we need support, or a time we need to weaken the capabilities of the FARC, it is now,” he said. “Every week, we are getting rid of a leader of the FARC or we get some weapons, explosives or drugs. Every day we continue to move ahead. Peace will be made with them or without them. The difference will be the timeline. We will do it in the next six months, or we will do it in the next five years.” Pinzón acknowledged that U.S. budget cuts could affect assistance to the Colombian military campaign, designed to combat terrorism as well as stem the flow of Colombian cocaine to the United States. “I understand the challenges you have from a fiscal perspective,” said Pinzón, throwing in a football analogy to make his point. “But we are in the red zone. We’ve got to get into the end zone!” Pinzón, the 41-year-old son of a Colombian army colonel, has a graduate degree in international relations and strategic studies from Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, and a master’s degree in public policy from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos appointed Pinzón as his defense minister in 2011. Previously, he had been the president’s general secretary. Learning from past mistakes While Pinzón touted Colombia’s military successes, he also said the government is open to talking with the rebels. He said Santos has offered the FARC a role in the country’s political process, but will not negotiate with respect to its military policies. “He will not discuss the future of the armed forces with the terrorists, but he is willing to let them participate in the political process,” Pinzón said. “The main peace builders in the country are the armed forces. They are the main protectors of human rights. Yes, we can have a hard stance — and we will if needed — but we also need to talk. We want to integrate the region in a peaceful way.” Pinzón said the Colombian government is using hard lessons learned in its longstanding struggle against illegal drug production and trafficking to disrupt other criminal activities. “In Colombia, we have been successful,” he said. “Drug trafficking is around 30 percent of what it was 10 years ago. The size of the coca fields, the level of production and certainly in the way criminal organizations fund themselves have all changed. It doesn’t mean it’s not a problem anymore, but it is a different problem.” Now, the government is turning its attention to other festering scourges. “We’re using the experience of the war against drugs to fight new funding sources of criminality — illegal mining, extortion, contraband smuggling, and small-scale drug trafficking in our cities,” he explained. “The next generation is fully committed to the idea that Colombia should learn from history and not keep doing what we’ve been doing wrong.” Good intervention, one should never give up, it’s impossible to abandon the fight. Forward, Military Forces, in spite of B. Obama. The horizon is clear, success in the fight, forward COLOMBIANS for everyone’s benefit and tranquility. May God bless you. I think the intervention of the very young Secretary of Defense is excellent. I would simply recommend him to study everything related to the help from Washington, which he considers so necessary. No, Mr. Secretary, remember that this help only means strengthening politics foreign to ours; this is in case we truly want to be independent in matters as serious as those that are being addressed. Let’s not allow ourselves to be misled, the way we are going, we are going very well… Peace, the greatest treasure coveted by the whole universe. Without it we have to fill notebooks daily with strategies that don’t lead to finding the best option. Long live Colombia. By Dialogo May 13, 2013
Credit unions continue to make the best financial partner for 115 million Americans despite the latest bank attacks, CUNA Chief Advocacy Officer Ryan Donovan wrote to Congressional offices Thursday, part of CUNA’s continuing efforts to highlight the credit union difference to policymakers in the face of inaccurate bank claims.“Credit unions work hard in the community day in and day out. They’re tax-exempt based on their structure as not-for-profit financial cooperatives and the mission that Congress gave them: to promote thrift and provide access to credit for provident purposes,” Donovan wrote. “They earn this status every day through the service and investment they make to their members and communities. The banks say there’s no longer any difference between credit unions and banks, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. And we’re proud of the credit union difference.”Despite inaccurate bank attacks, Donovan highlights the facts:Credit unions paid $5.1 billion in taxes in 2018. Meanwhile, according to the FDIC, the bankers received a $30 billion tax break last year, funneling most of this to investors, not customers. continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hen the White House held its controversial “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE) Summit in March, organizations advocating on behalf of Muslims Americans questioned why the event predominantly focused on Muslim radicalization and mostly glossed over American radical right-wing extremism.Still, many Muslim advocacy groups attended the multi-day event. As one local Muslim leader explained at the time: Muslim Americans’ inclusion in the summit was a sign that the often marginalized community was moving from “the ‘outhouse’ to the ‘main house.’”National security hawks lamented what they perceived to be the summit’s lack of focus, while also criticizing the Obama administration for pandering. Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford), current chairman of the House subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, and former chair of the House Committee on Homeland Security, had held five “Muslim Radicalization” hearings in 2011 and 2012. In an interview with the Press, the Congressman said that after the latest Obama-sponsored anti-extremism summit he came away thinking, “It’s almost as if we’re afraid, or the president is afraid…to identify this for what it is.”Last week’s shooting in Charleston, South Carolina by an alleged gunman who espoused racist views toward blacks has revived the discussion of entrenched racism and the current status of radical right-wing organizations in America. The mass slaying also fueled near-widespread condemnation of the Confederate flag’s continued presence in South Carolina and other Southern states.On Wednesday, the New York Times published a widely-shared article titled “Homegrown Radicals More Deadly than Jihadis in US” that cited a not-yet-published survey of police and sheriffs’ departments that by a wide margin reportedly ranks “anti-government violence” (74 percent) as their chief concern. Thirty-nine percent of law enforcement agencies selected al-Qaeda-inspired violence as their primary worry.The survey, which the Times said will soon be published by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security and the Police Executive Research Forum, is not the first of its kind, but rather the latest in a growing number of analyses that place right-wing extremist groups—not Islamic extremism—as constituting the greatest threats facing law enforcement agencies throughout the country.A report released by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Response to the Terrorism at the University of Maryland in July 2014 found that the dominant threat in the minds of law enforcement agencies nationwide was the right-wing “sovereign citizens” movement, followed by Islamic extremism.The Times story also included statistics compiled by the New America Foundation, which found that almost by two-to-one, right-wing attacks have killed more people (48) since Sept. 11, 2001 than Jihadists’ attacks (26). The nine people killed recently in Charleston were included in the foundation’s tally.“Law enforcement agencies around the country have told us the threat from Muslim extremists is not as great as the threat from right-wing extremists,” Charles Kurzman, one of the authors of the Triangle Center study, told the Times.Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) believes radical Islamist extremists pose the greatest threats to law enforcement agencies across the country. A growing body of analysis finds otherwise, ranking domestic right-wing extremist groups at the top of the terror food chain. (Christopher Twarowski/Long Island Press)Yet despite this growing body of data, King, one of the nation’s top counterterrorism officials, isn’t convinced. During a recent phone interview with the Press conducted on the same day when the Times’ report came out, he staunchly maintained that fundamental Islamic extremism poses the most immediate and significant threats instead.“The threat of Islamic terrorism is thousands of times greater than any homegrown non-Islamic threat,” he says, explaining that the “magnitude” of the threats posed by such extremism is disparate, because of potential cooperation from foreign powers.King also believes the New America Foundation statistics are flawed.“There could’ve been thousands of people killed if attacks weren’t stopped,” he says, citing the 2009 squashed plot to bomb the New York City subway system and the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, which killed three but injured dozens.The Department of Homeland Security in 2009 released a report warning that the political and economic climate at the time—the economic downturn and the election of the nation’s first black president—could lead to a resurgence in right-wing groups. Homeland Security, however, noted that it had not uncovered any active threats.“Rightwing extremists have capitalized on the election of the first African American president, and are focusing their efforts to recruit new members, mobilize existing supporters, and broaden their scope and appeal through propaganda, but they have not yet turned to attack planning,” the report stated.The report was widely condemned by conservatives, and, as the Times noted, eventually withdrawn.Despite the apparent racist motivations that inspired the shooter to murder nine people inside a historic black church in South Carolina, no direct link has been made between Dylann Storm Roof and extremist groups, though a purported manifesto discovered on a website reportedly registered to Roof refers to the Council of Conservative Citizens, which fought against school desegregation, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.The conservative group said on its website that it was “deeply saddened” by the attack.“We pray, for the sake of all Americans, that there will not be an escalation of racial tension,” it said, with a photo collage of the nine victims.Since Sept. 11, Muslims American communities from New Jersey to Long Island have been the focus of surveillance by the NYPD and nationwide by the FBI, the latter using informants to infiltrate mosques, sometimes under the threat of being placed on the government’s secret no-fly list. Such tactics have been condemned by Muslim leaders. In fact, the NYPD has said that surveillance of mosques and shops has not led to a single terrorism investigation.Widespread surveillance without evidence of criminal activity has fueled Islamophobia and cast suspicion on Muslim communities, advocates argued prior to Obama’s recent summit. The focus by the White House on Muslims in America and their purported path to radicalization due to outside threats like ISIS and al Qaeda led advocates to question why the same approach wasn’t being done to better understand extremism on the right.Right-wing groups are very much on the FBI’s radar, King claims, but they just don’t pose as great a risk to national security as their foreign terrorism counterparts, according to him.“They’re basically individual threats,” he says,referring to domestic right-wing extremist groups. “You obviously have the horrible shooting in Charleston. These are evil people, these are dangerous people, but they’re not a threat to the nation like Islamic terrorism is.”–With Christopher Twarowski View image | gettyimages.com Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York
The sharp decline in the rupiah exchange rate has caused a significant increase in crude oil procurement costs in the local currency.The company initially set a target of $52.4 billion in revenue and $8 billion in capital expenditure this year. The ICP was last recorded at $34.23 in March and the rupiah exchange at 15,787 on Thursday, according to Bank Indonesia. Pertamina and PGN, like many other big Indonesian companies, have revised down their growth projections for this year as Indonesia, the country with the highest COVID-19 death toll in Southeast Asia, imposed large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) to stop the spread of the new coronavirus.Many Indonesian cities are set to implement the partial lockdown in their respective jurisdictions to contain the pandemic, following in the footsteps of Jakarta, as well as Bogor, Depok and Bekasi in West Java and Tangerang, Banten.Nicke said that partial lockdowns would “further pressure” fuel demand, which may cause a decline in revenue by up to 45 percent in the worst-case scenario, in which the Indonesian Crude Price (ICP) reaches US$31 per barrel and the rupiah exchange rate stands at 20,000 to the US dollar.In the second-worst-case-scenario, Pertamina’s revenue would fall by a gentler 38 percent as the ICP hits $38 per barrel and the exchange rate reach 17,000 to the US dollar. State-owned oil company Pertamina and its subsidiary gas distributor Perusahaan Gas Negara (PGN) have cut their revenue targets this year as the government’s partial lockdown measures to halt the spread of COVID-19 has severely affected their businesses.Pertamina president director Nicke Widyawati said on Thursday that the 52-year-old company had been hit hard by a “triple shock” of crashing crude oil prices, falling oil demand and a weakening rupiah-US dollar exchange rate.“Today [Thursday], nationwide fuel consumption fell 34.9 percent from sales in January and February,” she told a teleconferenced hearing with the House of Representative members. “This is the lowest sales figure in Pertamina’s history.” In anticipation of lower revenues, the company plans to slash its capital expenditure by 23 percent and operational expenditure by 30 percent. Expenditure cuts include those for upstream investments, project developments, operational budgets and work trips, among others.Meanwhile, gas company PGN estimates that gas sales will fall by 31.59 British thermal units per day (Bbtud) this year from the initial target of 980 Bbtud.Almost two-thirds of the shortfall comes from the closure of many industries, particularly ceramic and steel industries on Java island, due to the coronavirus pandemic. The remaining shortfall comes from declines in new customers and in non-manufacturing usage such as gas-fired power plants.“The decline will reach its lowest level around the months of May, June and July,” PGN president director Gigih Prakoso said at a virtual press conference on Thursday.Due to falling demand, PGN, which also functions as Pertamina’s sole gas subholding subsidiary, is projected to book a 14 percent lower income than expected in 2020 with zero percent year-on-year growth under the worst-case scenario.The gas company has three strategies to minimize losses, including renegotiating gas purchasing deals with suppliers and revising planned investments this year, such as those related to gasifying diesel-fired power plants and expanding households gas pipelines.Gigih noted that a similar decline in gas demand was seen in Asia Pacific where, according to S&P rating agency data, second-quarter gas demand for the manufacturing sector will be around 560 Bbtud, down 15 percent from the previous quarter.Despite Pertamina’s lower income, union leader Ari Gumilar of the Federation of Pertamina United Labor Unions (FSPPB) told The Jakarta Post that the company had neither furloughed employees nor cut wages “and there are no talks of going there yet”.The union, he continued, was aware about the possibility of wage cuts under the worst-case scenario “but Pertamina has an agreement between directors and the union where we have to hold a discussion first”. Topics :
Admission to the festival is free. The event includes face painting, giant bubbles, inflatable bounce houses, slides and obstacle courses. 94.3 The Point will provide music, games, prizes and giveaways. Attendees can visit the many restaurants and shops at Pier Village or check out the vendors selling sea glass jewelry, homemade soaps, skin care items, dream catchers, home décor, handmade tote bags and more. There will also be kites for sale that can be launched in a separate public flying area. “It’s really difficult torun against the wind,” saidPelton. “There’s no prize;it’s just for bragging rights.It’s hilarious to watch.” Of course, the success of the event depends on Mother Nature. Since there is no rain date, organizers are hoping for a sunny day with wind blowing east, north or south at about 12 to 15 mph. Certain conditions may affect the ability of the kites to fly and for certain activities to occur. Kite flyers from area kite clubs will attend, including the South Jersey Kite Flyers, Kites Over New England, Wings Over Washington, Richmond Air Force, Connectikiters and Keystone Kiters. Kite experts include the Dallmer family, Mike Pignolet and Don Petty, Jeff Burka, Paul and Tina Keeler and the Klopp family. All of the kites are anchored in the sand. Some of the bigger ones can take up to four people to launch. Story by Mary Ann Bourbeau • Photos courtesy Kites at the Pier LONG BRANCH – Let’s go fly a kite! Bring one down to Pier Village and join in the fun at the 4th Annual Kites at the Pier event 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 13 and 14. But you don’t need a kite to be a spectator at this wondrous event, where kites of every shape and size will float high along the shore between Avenue and McLoone’s Pier House. Kite experts from all along the eastern seaboard will fly every kind of kite imaginable – from mermaids, sharks, squid and crabs to ducks, dolphins and dragons – and they’ll be high enough to be seen from miles away. “Kites at the Pier is a one-of-a-kind experience and provides an opportunity to celebrate the kickoff to the many events we host all summer long,” said Nicole Guilford, director of leasing and marketing at Pier Village. Other upcoming events at Pier Village include Easter at the Pier, Sidewalk Sale, Fresh Markets, Family Fun Nights, Summer Music Concert Series and Movies at the Pier. For details, visit piervillage.com. “You’ll be amazed,” saidBeatrix Pelton, CEO ofSky Festival Productions.“It’s like nothing you’veever seen before. Peoplethink of kites as the smalldiamond-shaped ones theyhad as kids, but some of ourlarge inflatable kites are sobig people think they’re hotair balloons!” Visitors will also be treated to an array of vertical wind feathers and ground displays and the annual Running of the Bols competition at about 11 a.m., in which each competitor latches onto an 8-foot circular parachute-kite and runs head first into the wind from a starting line to a finish line. There will be separate races for adults and children. Arts and entertainment reporter Mary Ann Bourbeau can be reached at [email protected]
The Portland Pirates scored the first five goals of the game en route to a 6-2 victory over the Sens in AHL Calder Cup Playoffs action Tuesday in Binghamton.The Pirates, trailing 3-1 in the best-of-seven series before Tuesday’s contest, force a game six Friday in Portland. Mark Mancari, once on the power play and the second short handed and Luke Adam, on the power play, gave Portland a 3-0 lead before the game was 10 minutes old. Mark Parrish made it 4-0 before the period ended.The goal by Parrish sent Binghamton starting goalie Robin Lehner to the showers in favour of Barry Brust.Portland out shot the Sens 41-37 in the game.In the first round of the playoffs Binghamton rallied from a 3-1 deficit to defeat Manchester Monarchs.Game seven, if necessary, is scheduled for Saturday in Portland.Former Nelson Leaf rearguard Geoff Kinrade, who plays defence for the B-Sens, finished the game a with an even plus-minus.
The Nelson Leafs concluded a five-game road trip on a downer Friday night in Creston as the Thunder Cats scored three times in the opening period to dump the Heritage City club 5-1 in Kootenay International Junior Hockey League action.Jayden Smith, former Nelson Leaf Alec Wilkinson and Carson Cartwright in the final minute of the opening frame scored to give the Thunder Cats the insurmountable lead.Sebastian Kilcommons increased the lead to 4-0 with a second period marker before Jackson Bruce-Fuoco made it 5-0 with a third-period power play tally.The Leafs, struggling to find the net of late, got its only goal from captain Rayce Miller in the third period. Ironically, Nelson out shot the Cats 33-31 as Creston netminder Brock Lefebvre out duelled Joseph Barton in the battle of the goalies.Nelson, slipping to 12-8 on the season, returns to action Saturday when the new-and-improved Grand Forks Border Bruins visit the NDCC Arena at 7 p.m.Murdoch-leading Hawks back on winning trackFive players each tallied two points as Beaver Valley dumped Castlegar Rebels 5-1 in Murdoch Division action Friday in Fruitvale.Michael and Allan Pruss, Tyler Hartman, Blake Sidoni and Jace Weegar each finished the game with two points as the Hawks held period leads of 1-0 and 3-1.Jake Yuris, Jaxon Joseph, Brett Roberts, Devin Nemes and Weegar scored for the Nitehawks.Tayden Woods replied for Castlegar.Beaver Valley, 15-4-1 on the season, increased its Murdoch Diviison lead to three points over Castlegar and eight over Nelson.The win also snapped a two-game losing streak for the Murdoch Division leaders.
Hey Leaf Nation relax, all is well says coach and GM Dave McLellan.However, this was before the Green and White were shellacked 9-zip by of all teams, rival Castlegar Rebels Wednesday night in the Sunflower City.“We’re going in direction I thought we would at this time of the season having all rookie defencemen,” McLellan told The Nelson Daily before heading off to the Sunflower City Wednesday.“It’s the little things that are hurting us right now and we have to find a way to start scoring.”“But it’s important to win at the right time be ready for playoffs,” McLellan adds.Having lost eight of 11 before Wednesday, McLellan was busy working the phones before Tuesday’s December 1st BC Hockey roster deadline.“We were (busy),” McLellan confessed.As of December 1st, Kootenay International Junior Hockey League teams had cut to 25 cards or less, which includes carded players plus available unused cards.McLellan used the deadline to acquire three players — a goalie, forward and defenceman. The Leafs traded with Princeton Posse to get 6’4” netminder Zakery Babin.McLellan then reached out to Columbia Valley Rockies to land forward Malcolm Fenelon before scoring defenceman Zach Morey from defending KIJHL champion Kimberley Dynamiters.All three deals were made for future considerations.McLellan also traded for forward Kelton Nelson and landed local defenceman Cole Arcuri in November.The Leafs released defenceman Ren Mason and goalie Joe Barton to make room for the new players.“Zak is a goalie I’m familiar with in Surrey so I was really glad to add him going forward,” McLellan said.Morey, a 6-foot-2, 175-pound native of Calgary, Alta., spent the bulk of the 2014-15 campaign with the Revelstoke Grizzlies, registering three goals and nine points in 29 games.In 14 games with Kimberley, Morey, who finished up last season with the West Kelowna Warriors of the BCHL, registered two assists.Fenelon scored eight goals and had eight assists in 32 games with Columbia Valley.The acquisitions leave the Leafs, which just passed the midway part of the season with a 13-13-0-0-1 record, with a roster of 23 players with two remaining cards.However, McLellan said the Leafs continue to be plagued with injuries having made the recent trip to the East Kootenay with a depleted lineup with Austin Lindsay, Andy Fitzpatrick, Max Daerendinger and Dash Thompson all out with injuries.“We’re just trying to make it through to Christmas and then get players back to begin to make a push after the break,” McLellan said.Leaf Nation can only hope Christmas is kind to the Green and White.
Before the first puck dropped on the Murdoch Division Semi Final between Castlegar and Nelson, Leafs Head Coach and Director of Player Personnel Mario DiBella said for his team to be successful they must be “disciplined” against a team with a dominating power play.Monday, the Leafs witnessed first hand the dangers of rolling the dice against the Rebels.