first_imgThe Lakers’ success in the free-agent market will rely on other factors, of course. The Lakers have enough cap space to sign one maximum-salary free agent. It appears likely recruiting efforts will mostly fall on Kobe Bryant, the Lakers’ 36-year-old star currently intent on playing out the final year of his contract next season that will pay him $25 million. The Lakers may have whiffed last summer in the LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony free-agency sweepstakes. But they signed Young to a four-year, $21 million deal as part of their fallback plan. That has offered the Lakers’ fanbase and locker room continuous feel-good moments in an otherwise sour season filled with endless losses and injuries. “It’s been interesting, to say the least,” Lakers coach Byron Scott said on the Young coaching experience. “The one thing Nick does bring is a lot of playfulness and laughter at practice and games. He’s always smiling so you have no choice but to like the kid. The thing I love about him the most is with all the playfulness that he has, he wants to win. That’s big time.”That dynamic has played out in different ways. Young has averaged 14.6 points per game this season, a mark that only trails Bryant’s team-leading 22.6-points-per-game average. Young’s production ranks fourth in the NBA among reserves. That has proven good enough for Young to lead the Lakers’ bench in scoring 17 times in the 32 games he’s played since returning from a right thumb injury that sidelined him for the season’s first six weeks. Young also owns all four of the Lakers’ four-point plays this season. “I try to block out all the negativity and just be Swaggy out there,” Young said. “They told me you can’t turn Swaggy off. You made this guy so you got to be him.”Yet, Scott has become more agitated over Young’s play in recent weeks. After making a game-winning 3-pointer last month in San Antonio, Young called himself, “I.D.M.” for “I Don’t Miss.” Young then went on a 15-game stretch where he shot a combined 59 of 173 from the field. Young has since shot a combined 11 of 20 in the past two games. But Scott has continuously pushed for Young to expand his game on defense, passing, hustle plays and practice preparation. So much that Scott has threatened Young with reduced playing time.“I told him, ‘You’re going to get out what you put in it,’” Scott said. “At practice, you want guys to be serious. Sometimes he has a hard time being serious.”Just a little. Young’s postgame interviews become stand-up comedy routines. He has joked he’ll end his NBA career with 46,000 points, something that vastly exceeds Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s record-setting 38,387 points. Young jokingly blames teammates’ poor shooting for why he only averages one assist per game. Young routinely interrupts his teammates’ interviews. Meanwhile, Young has enjoyed the enhanced limelight stemmed from his relationship with hip hop star Iggy Azalea.Yet, the Lakers’ most serious star has downplayed Young’s playful personality. After all, Young often speaks softly for only a few minutes after losses. “He understands in order to be Swaggy P and for people to pay attention to Swaggy P, he’s got to put that work in on the court,” Bryant said. “Or no one’s going to give a (darn).”Young offered Bryant a glimpse about his on-court approach when he worked out privately with him shortly after etching his long-term deal with the Lakers. That mindset carried over during Bryant’s infamous practice tirade last month when he unleashed a profanity-laced rant and comparing the team’s toughness to tissue paper. Young responded by matching up with Bryant and repeatedly claiming, “No one can guard me one-on-one.”“Some of it is just fear of embarrassment,” Bryant said about Young standing up to him. “People are watching and you have cameras rolling. The last thing you want is to seem like a wuss. But he’s very competitive.”Yet, Young sensed his partnership with the Lakers came close to dissolving after taking a risk by opting out of his contract before free agency. “I didn’t know what was going to happen,” Young said. “I was nervous and scared. I wanted to be here, but I kept hearing all the Carmelo rumors and Kobe having dinner with Carmelo. I knew once they paid him all that money, there would be none for me.” Young reported he also sparked interest from the New Orleans Pelicans, Dallas Mavericks and Chicago Bulls, the latter scenario only possible had Pau Gasol not left the Lakers for the Bulls. “I wanted some more security because I felt like this was home,” Young said. “But I wanted to be at the best place.”Now that Young has stayed at what he considers the best place, he will try to convince free agents this summer to view the Lakers with the same affection. As he has demonstrated in both his play and personality, Young remained confident he will help make that happen. “I’m the good guy!” Young said. “Everybody likes me.”For the latest Lakers news, follow the Inside the Lakers blog. More on Nick Young | Nick Young photos | VIDEO: Young talks about shooting struggles How to explain Young’s optimism?Well, the former L.A. Cleveland High and USC product grew up idolizing the Lakers and remembers how customary it became for them to host championship parades. But the man who playfully labeled himself this season as the NBA’s best all-time shooter also argued he will play a significant role this offseason in helping the Lakers attract marquee free agents. “I told Goran Dragic on the court, ‘You might be my teammate next year.’” Young told the L.A. News Group shortly after the Lakers’ loss on Monday to the Phoenix Suns. “I’ll talk to Marc (Gasol.) Me and him are cool. Kevin Love, I’ll talk to him.”Swaggy P, the Lakers’ free-agent pitchman? NEW ORLEANS >> His frustration over another loss eventually faded away. Nick Young’s playful bantering with teammates soon stopped. Then, moments after boasting about another high-volume scoring performance, Young turned serious.Both quiet and reflective, Young seemed aware the Lakers (12-30) enter Wednesday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans (20-21) at Smoothie King Center with issues beyond a five-game losing streak and the NBA’s fourth-worst record. Will the Lakers ever return to championship prosperity?“It’s tough, but I know it’s going to get better,” Young told the Los Angeles News Group. “This offseason is going to be big for us. It’s going to work out.”center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

first_imgGORMLEY WORKS ‘VERY WELL’ FOR SHAM            Under Triple Crown-winning jockey Victor Espinoza, Gormley, winner of the Grade I FrontRunner Stakes Oct. 1, worked five furlongs at 9 o’clock Monday morning on a “good” main track in 1:00.60 for Saturday’s Grade III Sham Stakes at one mile, the first major steppingstone on the West Coast to the $1 million Santa Anita Derby on April 8.“I thought he went very well,” said John Shirreffs, who trains the bay colt sired by Malibu Moon out of the Bernstein mare Race to Urga. “He raced in company all the way around with Cool Samurai. He went very nice.”Cool Samurai also was timed in 1:00.60.Owned by Jerry and Ann Moss of Zenyatta fame, Gormley has not raced since the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile on Nov. 5 when he was seventh after bobbling at the start of the 1 1/16-mile race and went four wide from his number seven post position in a field of 11.In addition to Gormley, Sham probables include American Anthem, Blabimir, Colonel Samsen and Term of Art.There were only 32 recorded works on the main track Monday, while nine were recorded on the training track, which was labeled “fast.” CONQUEST DADDYO DEBUTS FOR TEAM SADLERJohn Sadler has newly acquired Conquest Daddyo set to run in Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 San Gabriel Stakes scheduled for 1 1/8 miles on turf.“We got him out of the Conquest Stables’ dispersal sale in November,” said Sadler, who now trains the four-year-old Scat Daddy colt for principal owners Kosta and Peter Hronis. “He’s a stakes winner in Canada, trained well and had a good work last week (seven furlongs in 1:26.80), and we’re anxious to get him started.”Bred in Canada where he formerly was trained by multiple Sovereign Award winner Mark Casse, Conquest Daddyo has a 3-1-1 record from 10 starts with earnings of $311,891.Sadler added that champion three-year-old filly of 2015 Stellar Wind “is on the track every day and will start breezing later this month,” with the Grade I Santa Margarita Stakes March 18 as a major objective.Probable for the San Gabriel: Flamboyant, no rider; Itsinthepost, no rider; Perfectly Majestic, Victor Espinoza; Ring Weekend, Drayden Van Dyke; and Twentytwentyvision, Mike Smith. GORMLEY BREEZES FOR GRADE III SHAM STAKES‘DADDYO’ COOL FOR THE GRADE II SAN GABRIELCADET RONI READY FOR GRADE III LAS CIENEGAS$12 MILLION PEGASUS NEXT FOR MIDNIGHT STORM? CADET RONI EYES GRADE III LAS CIENEGASWith the weatherman playing havoc and conditions ranging from sunshine to rain seemingly minutes apart in recent days, trainer Mark Glatt plans to enter Cadet Roni in Saturday’s Grade III Las Cienegas Stakes scheduled for about 6 ½ furlongs on the hillside turf course, even though she has never run on the course.“I think she’ll run good down the hill, but if weather intervenes, she’s very good in the mud,” Glatt said, “so we’re going to take a shot in the race whichever way it goes.”Cadet Roni, a five-year-old daughter of 2008 Santa Anita Derby winner Colonel John, was bred by WinStar Farm and is owned by long-time Glatt clients Al and Sandee Kirkwood.She won the restricted Wishing Well Stakes at Santa Anita last January and was third in the Grade III Las Flores in her most recent start 10 months ago, last March 20.Probable for the Las Cienegas: Cadet Roni, Rafael Bejarano; Paquita Coqueta, Flavien Prat; Prize Exhibit, Mike Smith; and Rapid Rhythm, Kent Desormeaux.Paquita Coqueta worked four furlongs on the main track in 47.80 for Richard Mandella.center_img $12 MILLION PEGASUS WEIGHED FOR VERSATILE MIDNIGHT STORMMidnight Storm, at home on any surface, could make his next start in the $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 28, although as of this morning, no decision had been rendered.“So far, so good,” trainer Phil D’Amato said Monday, less than 24 hours after the six-year-old son of Pioneerof the Nile rolled to a 1 ¼-length victory as the 3-5 favorite in Sunday’s Grade II San Pasqual Stakes.“We took him out this morning and gave him a little jog and he’s no worse for wear,” D’Amato said. “We’ll see (about the Pegasus).“We’ll probably know more in the next couple days. We’re just going to get a better line on him and how much this last race took out of him and go from there.”Midnight Storm has earned $1,461,110 from 10 wins, three seconds and a third in 21 starts, seven on turf, one on dirt and two on wet/fast surfaces where he is unbeaten. FINISH LINES: Probable for next Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 Santa Ynez Stakes for three-year-old fillies at seven furlongs: It Tiz Well, no rider; Miss Sunset, no rider; Princess Karen, Rafael Bejarano; Resilient Humor, Kent Desormeaux; Shane’s Girlfriend, Flavien Prat; and Unique Bella, Mike Smith . . . Monday morning Keith Desormeaux was still basking in the glow of Decked Out‘s pulsating nose victory in Saturday’s Grade I American Oaks, with no word on the next race for the chestnut daughter of Street Boss. “We’re still celebrating,” the trainer said, “but the Grade I puts her in another category. The owners are probably thinking about a breeding career eventually, but she’s a very sound horse and the immediate plans are for her to continue racing. We had an amazing year in 2016, but Texas Red kicked everything off for us when he won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile in 2014. It’s got to end sometime, but we’re sure going to appreciate it while it lasts.” . . . Trainer Terry Knight, who saddled Big Energy in Sunday’s fourth race, has 12 head on hand at Los Alamitos for the Santa Anita meet. Knight had been training out of Pleasanton, but since the Bay Area track’s stable area closed last month, he moved his stock south, where he had been a mainstay until 1995 when he went to Northern California . . . Santa Anita will be dark for live racing Tuesday through Thursday. Live racing resumes Friday, Jan. 6, at 1 p.m. Admission gates open at 11 a.m. . . . Infobedad‘s 26 ½-length victory in Sunday’s sixth race is believed to be the largest winning margin ever at Santa Anita. “It’s the biggest I remember,” said Equibase chart caller Mike Schneider, at the helm since 1993. Tammy Boag, who has been handling photo finishes for Plusmic since 2009, said it was the largest during her time. Infobedad, a six-year-old Argentine-bred horse owned by Hronis Racing, trained by John Sadler and ridden by Tyler Baze, covered 1 1/8 miles under 122 pounds in 1:48.26 in a field of six $25,000 claimers . . . Players wishing to gain a seat in the 2017 National Handicapping Championship Challenge in Las Vegas Jan. 7 or get a head start in the 2018 event can buy into Santa Anita’s Players Choice contest for $500. The top five finishers in the Players Choice competition will have their pick of a 2017 or 2018 NHC Challenge entry. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top four Players Choice finishers: $10,000, $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000. For further information, visit santaanita.com/contest.last_img read more

first_imgRecent news about the body’s remarkable powers raise questions about why we aren’t better off.The occasional genius surprises us, but maybe the surprise should be that so many of us are not that smart. Is the genius an atavism (throwback) to a period when intelligence was the norm? Those who are super-healthy among us raise similar questions about why so many are sickly and subject to genetic disorders. Look at these news stories that suggest remarkable mechanisms for repair and maintenance of the body. Are they hints of lost abilities we could learn to restore or augment?Superheroes with super DNA. Why do some people have genetic mutations for serious disease but remain healthy? New Scientist reports on a survey of genes from nearly 600,000 people that identified 13 with markers for cystic fibrosis and other debilitating conditions, but who don’t get the disease—not even any symptoms. What’s going on? Reporter Colin Barras suggests some hypotheses:These people may show no symptoms because they have mutations elsewhere in their genomes that override the detrimental ones, or perhaps their environment has somehow protected them from developing disease. A better understanding of this could lead to new treatments, but to do this, [Stephen] Friend [Sage Bionetworks, Seattle] says we need a new approach: “study the healthy – don’t just study the sick.”James Gallagher at the BBC News thinks these lucky ones were born with “superhero DNA” that somehow protects them. Either that, or geneticists overestimate the mutations. He quotes one doctor who waves Darwin’s magic wand: “Millions of years of evolution have produced far more protective mechanisms than we currently understand.” If that were true, though, disease should be the rare exception.Savior cells. Oliver Semler was born with a bone disease that makes his bones fracture easily. He went through childhood wearing casts from his frequent bone fractures. As an adult, Science Magazine says, he has devoted his life to helping children similarly afflicted. Scientists like Semler are working on stem cell therapies, including ones that take the mother’s stem cells and transplant them to the growing fetus in the womb. Hopes are rising that stem cells from the mother can empower the growing baby’s own immune system to develop properly while it is still plastic, preventing a variety of disabling genetic conditions. Could those mechanisms have worked in the past without the extraordinary intervention of the scientist?Love your fat. How would you like to turn your love handles into something useful? Live Science reports on new successes turning fat cells into insulin-producing pancreatic cells, offering hope to sufferers of diabetes. Does this hint that our body’s cells were designed to regrow damaged parts, given the right circumstances, without the scientist’s help?Your internal network router.  Inspired by biology, network engineers publishing in Nature Communications discuss “dynamic information routing in complex networks.” The body already knows what they’re trying to learn:Attuned function of many biological or technological networks relies on the precise yet dynamic communication between their subsystems. For instance, the behaviour of cells depends on the coordinated information transfer within gene-regulatory networks and flexible integration of information is conveyed by the activity of several neural populations during brain function. Identifying general mechanisms for the routing of information across complex networks thus constitutes a key theoretical challenge with applications across fields, from systems biology to the engineering of smart distributed technology.Bypass routing. A heartwarming story about Ian Burkhart, a 24-year-old Ohio man who became a quadriplegic six years ago, is told on Science Daily and New Scientist. A device that goes around the damaged area of his nervous system is giving him mobility again: the ability to move his arm and fingers with his thoughts.Six years ago, he was paralyzed in a diving accident. Today, he participates in clinical sessions during which he can grasp and swipe a credit card or play a guitar video game with his own fingers and hand. These complex functional movements are driven by his own thoughts and a prototype medical system that are detailed in a study published online today in the journal Nature.He wrote his own article for New Scientist. “I’m the first quadriplegic person in the world to use my own thoughts to control my own arm. It’s a pretty neat experience,” he says. Though the device is crude today, it promises refinements to come. What’s pertinent to our theme is the plasticity of the brain this experiment demonstrates. Nature News discusses what scientists are learning:Previous studies have suggested that after spinal-cord injuries, the brain undergoes ‘reorganization’ — a rewiring of its connections. But this new work suggests that the degree of reorganization occurring after such injuries may be less than previously assumed. “It gives us a lot of hope that there are perhaps not as many neural changes in the brain as we might have imagined after an injury like this, and we can bypass damaged areas of the spinal cord to regain movement,” says Bouton.There are limitations to the experiment; Burkhardt can’t feel the objects he manipulates (yet), but he is getting better and faster with practice.New sight. Another heartwarming story in Current Biology describes “Rapid Integration of Tactile and Visual Information by a Newly Sighted Child.” Does someone born blind have the capacity to learn about a world they’ve never seen? How quickly can they relate to the new visual sense? Here are the highlights of the paper:After cataract removal, a blind child accurately reached and grasped in 24 minThe next day, she immediately recognized by sight an object previously held and seenOn day 3, she held an object without seeing it and then recognized it by sightVisual-motor and intersensory integration and transfer developed very rapidlyWhat this demonstrated to the neuroscientists is that the two senses of sight and touch “are prearranged to immediately become calibrated to one another.” A related article about perception on Science Daily reports that people have more “top down control” of what they don’t notice than many scientists had previously believed. In regard to the sense of touch, both PNAS and Current Biology report new findings that show we get a lot more information from our fingertips than thought. We pick up information about vibrations in the object, and the surface area of the contact becomes an important part of our proprioceptive (positional) sense.Wannabee Superman? The human immune system makes the news often these days, especially regarding cancer treatment. Science Daily reports on a previously unknown class of immune cells that transform from ‘Clark Kent’ to ‘Superman’ quickly. They look like ordinary T cells, “yet are biased toward becoming T regulatory cells (Tregs), which protect the body from autoimmune disease.” Named pre-nTreg cells, they put on their capes and take off for action. “The researchers think pre-nTregs may be activated in response to many kinds of immune challenges, such as autoimmune diseases, cancer and infections.” Cancer researchers like to point out that we get cancer millions of times a day, but the immune system, like Superman, swoops in to stop it. The few times cancer gets a foothold get all the attention.Genius in tow. The innate capacity of the human brain continues to astonish. “Are humans the new supercomputer?” Science Daily asks. In our ongoing race against technology, our brains still show exceptional powers. Experiments with quantum games, reported in Nature, show that “our skill in approaching problems heuristically and solving them intuitively” still beats the enormous processing power of supercomputers. A summary report in Nature describes the success 300 volunteers had in overcoming the counter-intuitive notions of quantum mechanics by using a crowd-sourced computer game.But the work also suggests that the human mind might be more capable of grasping the rules of the bizarre quantum world than previously thought — a revelation that could have implications for how scientists approach quantum physics, says Jacob Sherson, a quantum physicist at Aarhus University, Denmark, who led the study. “Maybe we should allow some of that normal intuition to enter our problem solving,” he says. Scientists studying quantum foundations have also long said that finding a more intuitive approach to quantum physics could help to crack outstanding puzzles, although many doubted that this would ever be possible without new theories.It’s not clear why natural selection would ever endow hunter-gatherers with the ability to comprehend quantum mechanics. “The map we created gives us insight into the strategies formed by the human brain,” Science Daily says. “We behave intuitively when we need to solve an unknown problem, whereas for a computer this is incomprehensible.”Bible-believers say that man was created perfect but, because of the Fall into sin, is degenerating. Secular science says man is climbing upward by blind evolutionary processes that don’t care where he is going, and thereby cannot prepare for unseen circumstances. Which worldview explains these observations? We see hints of capabilities that could be far better. They should be the norm, if evolution somehow came up with them. Instead, we see indications of superfluous design and restorative genius. Once in awhile they turn up in exceptional individuals. Wouldn’t everyone in a Darwinian world rise to their own level of incompetence? Why the extraordinary plasticity, robustness and “prearrangements” for automatic calibration or for dynamic rewiring and restoration?Darwin looked for atavisms from an animal past. What we see are atavisms from superior intellect and health. These point to decay and death over thousands of years from previous heights of fitness, not evolutionary progress. De-evolution explains these observations; Darwin had it backwards because of his anti-supernatural bias. As so often is the case, the Bible has it right. It explains why the antediluvians lived hundreds of years, and why in the coming Millennium people will be considered unfortunate to die at age 100. Medical science struggles to restore some measure of the powers  our Creator gave us originally.(Visited 25 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

first_img7 February 2014The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is to team up with Indian state-owned company Coal India Limited to explore opportunities in the South African mining industry value chain, the DTI said on Thursday.The agreement to explore mutual prospects in South Africa’s coal sector was reached after a meeting between DTI officials and Coal India representatives on the sidelines of the African Mining Indaba in Cape Town.“Coal of India is in the business of mining and exporting low-grade thermal coal and has been mapping the South African coal mining industry, with the interest of acquiring mining concessions and information on how best to exploit coal deposits in a way that serves the best interest of all stakeholders,” the DTI said in a statement.During the meeting, the DTI said, it had elaborated on government policies and the regulatory framework in the mining industry, the importance of the sector and the costs involved in the business “in an effort to clarify and provide predictable solutions”.The DTI’s Yunus Hoosen said discussions like these with different stakeholders were “a breakthrough on how South Africa could engage more productively with investors in the mining sector”.Hoosen said the talks also served as a platform for encouraging big mining role players to develop smaller mining companies in the coal sector, and also to zoom in on the beneficiation and localisation opportunities within the industry.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

first_imgNormal anatomyThe anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a ligament in the center of the knee that prevents the shin bone (tibia) from moving forward on the thigh bone (femur).IndicationsIf the ACL is torn, the knee joint may become unstable and affect the ability to perform work or athletic activities.Procedure, part 1ACL reconstruction is surgery to replace the torn ACL ligament. There are several choices of tissue to use for the new ligament, including an autograft (tissue from the patient?s own body) or an allograft (tissue from a cadaver). One of the most common autografts use part of the patellar tendon (the tendon in the front of the knee).Procedure, part 2The old ligament is removed using a shaver or other instruments. Bone tunnels are made to place the new ligament (patellar graft) in the knee at the site of the old ACL. Screws are commonly used to secure the graft in the bone tunnels, although other methods of fixation are used depending on the type of graft used.AftercareAt the end of the surgery, the incisions are closed, and a dressing is applied. ACL reconstruction is usually a very successful surgery. The majority of patients will have a stable knee that does not give way after ACL reconstruction.Review Date:8/14/2011Reviewed By:Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Assistant Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.advertisementlast_img read more

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say Agent: Napoli like Fiorentina midfielder Veretoutby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveThe agent of Jordan Veretout expects him to stay with Fiorentina this month.The former Aston Villa midfielder has been superb for the Viola this season.“[Napoli sporting director Cristiano] Giuntoli likes Veretout, I’ve spoken about that several times,” Mario Giuffredi reiterated on Radio Marte.“January isn’t his market though, because Fiorentina are aiming for Europe so he’ll stay with the Viola until June.“He’s a great player who costs a lot, and clubs can’t always make those kind of investments in January. €30-35m is not a figure to spend in January.” last_img read more

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Fikayo Tomori: Chelsea players love playing for legend Lampardby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveFikayo Tomori says Chelsea’s players love playing for manager Frank Lampard.The fullback hit a screamer for the 5-2 win at Wolves yesterday.He told chelseafc.com: “Obviously we are disappointed to have conceded two goals, but we try to think positive, the manager tries to keep us positive in training and off the pitch, in meetings.”He’s a legend at the club so he has the respect of the players already.”His management skills are very good. I had him last year and he’s a very good talker, a very good man-manager, and you can see we want to play for him, want to win games and implement his style of play. We’re working hard day in, day out to try and do that.” last_img read more

first_imgTORONTO – A decision by Canadian military investigators to shut down a probe into allegations that recruits were stripped and tortured during exercises decades ago will now come under independent scrutiny, the Military Police Complaints Commission of Canada announced Thursday.In a detailed written explanation, the chairwoman of the commission, Hilary McCormack, said the “public interest” investigation will determine whether the matter was properly handled and whether improper considerations influenced the decision to close the case.“It is in the public interest for the allegations in this complaint to be investigated in an open and transparent manner,” McCormack said. “The allegations in this complaint are serious and raise issues that can impact on confidence in the military police and its independence.”It was not immediately clear how much of the original torture allegations will be aired in the commission’s review.The complaint about the investigation was made in December 2016 by Jeffrey Beamish, a former member of the Canadian Armed Forces.Beamish had initially alleged he was “tortured” during exercises at the infantry battle school at CFB Wainwright, Alta., between October 1983 and March 1984. He alleged others among the 33 recruits were also tortured during a prisoner-of-war scenario in which they were stripped and placed in cells too small to sit down in.“The complaint alleges that over the following 24 to 48 hours, the naked recruits were sprayed through the jail door bars with cold water from a hose while the windows were left open, letting in the outside air,” McCormack said. “It is alleged that the temperature outside was between -15°C and -30°C. As the recruits did not have access to bathrooms, they had to urinate on the floor.”Beamish said the experience left him with major depressive disorder, PTSD, night terrors, paranoia and adjustment issues. He went to military police, and they turned the matter over to their investigative arm — the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service.In August 2016, the lead investigator called Beamish to advise him the investigation was closed, according to McCormack. Beamish maintains he was told among other things that the courts would not punish anyone for what occurred, and that “torture” wasn’t an offence under the Criminal Code at the time of the original events. Beamish also said he was given nothing in writing and that the investigator confirmed he had not actually reviewed the file.His complaint alleges “professional negligence, incompetence, and failing to investigate serious criminal allegations.”McCormack said a professional standards investigation decided in September his complaint was unsubstantiated. Among reasons given was the initial investigator’s experience and quality of his work, but it did fault his communication skills.Beamish then turned to the military police complaints commission. After reviewing the available materials, McCormack said she decided to exercise her discretion and call for a proper review. While expressing no view on the merits of the complaint, McCormack called it important to decide whether “improper considerations” influenced the decision to close the initial investigation.The gravity of what Beamish initially alleged is “indisputable,” she said.“They involve an allegation of torture, a very serious offence, and they are also alleged to have been the result of institutional conduct by a CAF Battle School chain of command and/or persons occupying positions of power or leadership in the CAF,” McCormack said.The possibility that military police were declining to investigate serious allegations against the military brass could give rise to a perception of a lack of independence and “discourage” other complainants from coming forward, she said.As a result, she said, it would be in the public interest for the commission to conduct its own investigation and would now start that process.last_img read more

first_imgWashington DC: NASA scientists, including one of Indian origin, have found that the International Space Station (ISS) is teeming with bacteria and fungi, creating a microbial environment in the orbital laboratory similar to gyms and hospitals on Earth and putting astronauts at health risk. Scientists created a comprehensive catalogue of the bacteria and fungi found on surfaces inside the ISS. Knowledge of the composition of the microbial and fungal communities on the ISS can be used to develop safety measures for NASA for long-term space travel or living in space, the US space agency said in a statement. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US”Specific microbes in indoor spaces on Earth have been shown to impact human health. This is even more important for astronauts during spaceflight, as they have altered immunity and do not have access to the sophisticated medical interventions available on Earth,” said Kasthuri Venkateswaran, from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in the US. “In light of possible future long-duration missions, it is important to identify the types of microorganisms that can accumulate in the unique, closed environments associated with spaceflight, how long they survive and their impact on human health and spacecraft infrastructure,” said Venkateswaran, corresponding author of the study published in the journal Microbiome. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsThe researchers found that microbes on the ISS were mostly human-associated. The most prominent bacteria were Staphylococcus (26 per cent of total isolates), Pantoea (23 per cent) and Bacillus (11 per cent). They included organisms that are considered opportunistic pathogens on Earth, such as Staphylococcus aureus (10 per cent of total isolates identified), which is commonly found on the skin and in the nasal passage, and Enterobacter, which is associated with the human gastrointestinal tract. On Earth, they are predominant in gyms, offices, and hospitals, which suggests that the ISS is similar to other built environments where the microbiome is shaped by human occupation. “Whether these opportunistic bacteria could cause disease in astronauts on the ISS is unknown. This would depend on a number of factors, including the health status of each individual and how these organisms function while in the space environment,” said Aleksandra Checinska Sielaff, from JPL. “Regardless, the detection of possible disease-causing organisms highlights the importance of further studies to examine how these ISS microbes function in space,” said Checinska Sielaff. Some of the microorganisms identified on the ISS have also been implicated in microbial induced corrosion on Earth. However, the role they play in corrosion aboard the ISS remains to be determined, the researchers said. They used traditional culture techniques and gene sequencing methods to analyse surface samples collected in eight locations on the ISS, including the viewing window, toilet, exercise platform, dining table and sleeping quarters, during three flights across 14 months. This allowed them to examine if and how the microbial and fungal populations differed between locations and over time. Researchers found that while fungal communities were stable, microbial communities were similar across locations but changed over time.last_img read more

OSU junior safety Vonn Bell (11) dives toward the end zone after interception in a game against Minnesota on Nov. 7. OSU won, 28-14. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorThe number of vacancies on the Ohio State depth chart keeps growing, as the count of starters not returning has climbed to 16 on Tuesday with Vonn Bell’s declaration for the NFL draft. “I have decided to make myself eligible and enter the 2016 NFL Draft,” the junior safety said in a press release through the university.  “It has been an honor and a privilege to play at the best university in the country, to play for the best coach in the country, and to help bring the 2014 national championship to The Ohio State University and the best fans in the country.”A two-year starter for the Scarlet and Gray, Bell finishes his career in Columbus with 176 total tackles, nine interceptions and two fumble recoveries. In the Fiesta Bowl against Notre Dame on New Year’s Day, the Rossville, Georgia, native recorded a pair of tackles. Bell found his way to the end zone twice in 2015, the first on a 14-yard fumble recovery against Hawaii and the second on a 15-yard interception return versus Minnesota. In what turned out to be his final collegiate season, the 5-foot-11 Bell received first-team All-American honors by the Associated Press. Bell’s announcement comes just hours after redshirt junior wide receiver Michael Thomas announced his plans to turn pro, as well. The duo joins seven other OSU underclassmen who have declared for April’s draft. In addition to the nine underclassmen leaving Columbus, seven starters that were seniors will no longer be with the program in 2016. Bell’s declaration is likely to be the last one for coach Urban Meyer’s Buckeyes, as all the players rumored to be mulling to turn pro have done so thus far. Bell’s draft projection varies amongst analysts but many have him graded as a second- or third-round pick. “My time here has been very special to me and my family,” Bell said in the release. “And I thank all Buckeye fans for their love and support.” read more