The 2017 Budget was presented yesterday and as has been our practice, we will provide a framework for the average citizen to analyse the presentation and be able to follow the debate that will follow. Firstly, we must appreciate the type of economy we have so we can decide whether the measures and spending introduced by the Budget will assist the economy to deliver what the Government stated at the beginning of its term: the “good life”.We have what is called a “mixed economy” – one that combines characteristics of market, command and traditional economies. It benefits from the advantages of all three while suffering from some of the disadvantages. While market economies stress the role of business as the “engine of growth” and the operation of the market using supply and demand to set prices of the goods we buy, the Government has a critical role to play in strategic areas from a “command” standpoint, beyond the usual regulatory role it plays.The “command economy” in its extreme form was introduced by the People’s National Congress (PNC) in the 1970s when the Government nationalised 80 per cent of the economy and private industry utilising market forces were miniaturised. This was reversed from 1989 when most of the nationalised industries were privatised. The Government was now supposed to perform three major “mixed economy” functions, in which the annual budget plays three critical roles.These are to allocate or encourage the allocation of resources in the most efficient manner to deliver growth and development; to redistribute the national wealth in a more equitable fashion; and finally, to collect and spend revenues for the national weal. Thus, with the present Budget, we should first look for measures introduced to deliver “growth and development”.Over the last few months, the Government met the Private Sector organisations, which uniformly informed the former of the low level of activity into which the economy had sunk. They recommended what has been the standard policy in the toolkit of mixed-economy governments – stimulus of the economy. These had been proposed and successfully implemented from the Great Depression by the economist Lord Keynes. But the policies had fallen into disfavour with the introduction of free-market fundamentalism from the late seventies. But with the world economic collapse in 2007, the ideas of Keynes have come back into vogue.So, more granularly, we should look for policies that would encourage spending in the economy. Typically, taxes by the Government on businesses discourage their expansion while subsidies encourage it. Taxes should, therefore, be reduced so that more money remains with businesses and citizens. These funds can then be spent to initiate a virtuous and ever-increasing cycle of demand stimulating production. Interestingly, this will generate overall increased tax collection by the Government on the larger amount of economic activity. While the Government has said there would be no new taxes, that would not be enough: there needs to be substantial tax cuts to have the desired, stimulatory effect.The Government can also encourage investments in identified areas of the economy through appropriate policies. Take the sugar industry where the Government has closed Wales Estate and will soon close another three that will result in 7000 workers losing their jobs. In addition to those workers not earning incomes to even live a “subsistence life” much less the “good life”, the Government would not be collecting taxes from those incomes nor revenues from the sugar industry it owns. Wales was supposed to become the model for transitioning “sugar workers” into independent “farmers” of crops that would deliver greater revenues and taxes. We should scrutinise the Budget for these policies.In terms of the redistributive function, it is elementary economics that the pie must be made larger for effective, sustainable redistribution. We must scrutinise the Budget to discern whether redistribution outweighs stimulation and for equitable Government spending across all groups. That would be the surest way for a further contraction of the economy and increased social tensions.
Dear Editor,Every day that passes confirms more and more that the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) has no interest in investigating organised crimes for which it was established. It is becoming clearer with each passing day that this Unit’s agenda is to execute the diktats of politicians to do hatchet jobs on identified persons. This sinister mission of SOCU was unwittingly made clear by no other than its Head, Mr Sydney James, whose remarks were carried in separate and different stories published in the local media on May 2.In one of the articles, it is reported that Mr James indicated that SOCU has not been requested to investigate the 476 pounds of gold which was alleged to have left Guyana illegally and stolen in Cura?ao. The estimated worth of this gold is US$11.5 million. This is approximately GY$2.5 billion. One does not have to be a rocket scientist to conclude that the disappearance of this gold is part of an organised criminal enterprise.However, SOCU has been instructed to investigate a concocted and contrived criminal case of missing law books worth US$2000 and to institute a criminal charge, which can never be proven, in relation thereto. In another article, the same Mr James is quoted as lamenting the delay in receiving legal advice in respect of investigations being done by SOCU. All of the investigations listed by Mr James in that article are politically directed.Again, Mr James has blissfully exposed that legal advice is viewed not as a fundamental facet of the investigations of SOCU but is more of an obstacle and hindrance. It is clear, therefore, that SOCU’s priority is not a fairness and legality in their investigations but is to do a hatchet job and institute criminal charges as quickly as possible.In my case, the alacrity was unprecedented. I was called in for questioning by SOCU on Monday, April 24, 2017. I served SOCU with a High Court Order on April 25, preventing them from seizing the books. On April 26, the file was sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal advice. On April 27, I was charged! Clearly, there was no delay in getting advice in my case.On April 27 in court, my lawyers requested full disclosure of all statements and evidence to be made to the defence on the next court date, May 9. On Tuesday, a letter was written to the Special Prosecutor reminding him of this request. I also spoke to him in person on Tuesday. He told me he does not have all the statements yet. On Wednesday, he responded, in writing and informed me that “investigations are not yet completed”!! So, in their haste, they charged me without statements and without the investigations even being completed!! What if the continuing investigations unearth evidence that is exculpatory? Do you really think they will bring forth this evidence, withdraw the charge and suffer the consequential public embarrassment? Of course not!!Clearly, this matter is about political vengeance and vendetta and has nothing to do with justice and fairness. In this political climate, it may not be insignificant that the Special Prosecutor is the brother of a sitting Minister of the Government.I call upon the Special Prosecutor and SOCU to use the same speed referred to above in getting those statements ready and available and conclude the investigations before the next court date and be prepared to proceed with their case at the same speed, as well.Sincerely,Mohabir Anil Nandlall, MPAttorney-at-Law
Taal evacuees make the most of ‘unusual’ clothing donations, leaves online users laughing Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Deandre Ayton shines as Suns pound Knicks Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia PLAY LIST 00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu01:26Homes destroyed after Taal Volcano eruption Duke’s Zion Williamson, right, poses for photographs with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being selected by the New Orleans Pelicans as the first pick during the NBA basketball draft Thursday, June 20, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK — Zion Williamson plays with force and ferocity, a Hulk in hightops who looks like he’d never show a soft side.Draft night proved otherwise.ADVERTISEMENT Crucial stretch LATEST STORIES Rio’s unsafe Olympic Park ordered closed by Brazilian judge Williamson was the No. 1 pick of the New Orleans Pelicans — a surprise to nobody who watched basketball this past season. But afterward he couldn’t hide his emotions, even though he along with everyone else knew what would happen Thursday night.“Because I love the game of basketball,” he said. “You can hear people say things like, ‘Oh, that it was likely I was going to go No. 1.’ But I guess you don’t know until you actually go through it. Hearing my name called and I was able to make it on stage without a tear, shake the commissioner’s hand, but in the interview my mom was standing beside me, and my emotions just took over.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsThere might be tears of joy in New Orleans, too, after the Pelicans were able to get the Duke powerhouse who is considered one of the most exciting prospects in years.The 6-foot-7, 285-pounder compiled a career worth of highlights into just one season, becoming the third freshman to be voted player of the year by The Associated Press. 11 nabbed for shabu, drug den busted in Maguindanao Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? His assault on the rims made him a favorite of college basketball fans, but his game is more than just dunks. Williamson averaged 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds while shooting 68% from the field.Wearing a white suit, he hugged members of his family and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after his name was called first at Barclays Center.Williamson will step into an open position in New Orleans, which recently agreed to trade All-Star Anthony Davis, the last freshman to win the AP award, to the Los Angeles Lakers.“I’m going to do anything to win. I’m just going to do anything to win,” Williamson said.The Memphis Grizzlies also quickly addressed a positional need by taking Murray State’s Ja Morant with the No. 2 pick. The Grizzlies agreed to trade Mike Conley, their longtime point guard, to Utah a day earlier.ADVERTISEMENT Solon urges Solgen to reconsider quo warranto petition vs ABS-CBN MOST READ They got a good replacement in Morant, who led Division I with 10 assists per game as a sophomore while averaging 24.5 points.“I have some big shoes to fill in Mike Conley,” Morant said. “He’s a great player. I wish him the best. Like I said before, it just means the Grizzlies see a lot in me.”RJ Barrett then made it two Duke freshmen within the top-three picks when the New York Knicks took the guard who actually edged out Williamson to lead the Atlantic Coast Conference in scoring. Knicks fans hoped they would get Williamson after finishing with the worst record in the league but seemed happy to end up with Barrett, loudly cheering and chanting “RJ! RJ!” when the pick was announced.Barrett was also in tears after landing with the team he hoped would pick him.De’Andre Hunter of national champion Virginia was taken fourth but won’t be teaming up with Williamson. The Pelicans acquired the rights to the pick in the Davis deal but agreed to trade it shortly before the draft to Atlanta. The original trade can’t be official until July 6, so Hunter was outfitted with a Lakers hit and the draft board behind the stage listed the pick as belonging to the Lakers.The Cleveland Cavaliers then took Vanderbilt guard Darius Garland, who played in just five games because of a knee injury.Then it was another pick who won’t be playing for the team that made it, with Jarrett Culver taken at No. 6 by Phoenix with a pick that the Suns agreed to trade to Minnesota.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments Olympic rings arrive in host city on barge into Tokyo Bay Steaming fissures on Taal Volcano Island spotted
“We have a really dedicated staff who ensure these students are successful,” said Carlye Olsen, director of accountability, staff development and educational technology at the district. “They take responsibility for teaching the students.” At face-value, Whittier Union’s percentage is lower than last year, but state education officials cautioned against comparisons. The 2006-07 version of the CELDT is different than previous versions because it is tougher and scores are based on a different scale, said Deb Sigman, state testing director with the California Department of Education. “We eliminated some of the pieces, we’ve shortened some of the test,” she said. “We’ve modified the test to be more rigorous and in alignment with the California English Language Development Standards.” Because of that, comparing scores year-to-year would be an inaccurate reflection of student performance, she said. Most school representatives say despite what may look like lower test scores, the latest version of the exam is actually a better gauge of English proficiency – exactly what state education officials were trying to accomplish. “Just by nature of being more rigorous, \ really gets at the heart of what students know and are able to do,” said Elyse Sullivan, assistant superintendent of instructional services at Whittier City School District. Twenty-two percent of test-takers there scored at advanced levels. “We were not thrilled with this year’s results but we understand the test has changed,” Sullivan said. She pointed out that a tougher test will make for better preparation among students attempting reclassification as fluent English speakers. At Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District – where 30 percent of English learners scored at advanced levels – similar sentiments were echoed. “I’m never comfortable if students aren’t achieving at the highest level, but I understand what they are doing with the CELDT, so I understand percentage changes from last year,” Superintendent Ginger Shattuck said. State officials hope the new scale will more accurately reflect where students should be when they reach fluency. “Our goal is to better prepare all students with strong communication skills in English so they can effectively participate in school and successfully compete in the work force,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell said in a statement. For complete test results visit http://celdt.cde.ca.gov. firstname.lastname@example.org (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2109 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WHITTIER – A majority of local school districts are above the statewide average of K-12 English-language learners scoring at advanced levels in proficiency testing, according to exam results released Thursday. Out of nine Whittier-area school districts, six saw more than 32 percent of its English-language learners scoring in the “advanced” or “early advanced” categories of the California English Language Development Test taken last year. Those two levels are the highest a student can score on the exam, which measures English proficiency among non-fluent speakers. Top results came from Whittier Union High School District, where 53 percent of test-takers scored in the advanced levels.
Sam Allardyce’s side evaded the drop to the Championship, at the expense of Newcastle Sunderland are revelling in the relegation of fierce rivals Newcastle United.An inspired end to the season saw the Black Cats evade the drop, sending the Magpies down to the Championship.And one Sunderland fan is still overjoyed at his side sealing Premier League safety, deciding to really rub it in by getting in touch with Newcastle’s club megastore.Watch the hilarious clip below… 1
1 Costa is emptying his Surrey mansion while he remains ‘on strike’ in Brazil Diego Costa is ploughing on with decision not to return to Chelsea by calling in the removal men to empty his Surrey home. Costa has also had all the utilities switched off as he remains in Brazil, ignoring club orders to return to training, according to the Daily Mail. The Spain international was told by boss Antonio Conte via text that he had no future at the club earlier this summer. Costa wants a move back to his former club Atletico Madrid but the Blues are demanding £60million for him – far more than the Spaniards are willing to pay. Elsewhere it has emerged that Marseille could move for Costa if a deal with Atleti fails to materialise before the transfer window closes. Marseille president Jacques-Henri Eyraud said: “I like his character, his grit and his sense of combat. He would fit in very well at OM. However, he has a complicated contractual situation.“If a player ticks all the boxes, then we showed that we were able to do the transactions. Why not? But it [the deal] must at least meet certain conditions. Nothing is impossible.“I assure nothing [to the fans] for the end of the market. It is a sensitive subject. But one thing is certain, we are actively searching for a striker.”
Rashford has four goals in his last four games Harry Maguire, Marcus Rashford and Victor Lindelof have all been passed fit to start for Manchester United against Bournemouth.The trio had been doubts for the trip to the Vitality Stadium after picking up knocks in the midweek Carabao Cup win over Chelsea. 1 Getty Images But they have all recovered in time to play in Saturday’s lunchtime clash with the Cherries, which you can listen to live on talkSPORT.Paul Pogba’s ankle problem means he is still missing for United, while Axel Tuanzebe, Nemanja Matic and Luke Shaw also remain sidelined.It is the same XI which started last Sunday’s Premier League win at Norwich.Bournemouth, meanwhile, make one change from the side which drew 0-0 with Watford in their last Premier League game.Harry Wilson, on loan at the Vitality from Liverpool, comes into the side and Arnaut Groeneveld drops to the bench.CONFIRMED TEAMSBournemouth: Ramsdale, Rico, Ake, Cook, Smith, Billing, Lerma, Wilson, Fraser, King, Wilson. Subs: Simon Francis, Chris Mepham, Arnaut Groeneveld, Lewis Cook, Lloyd Kelly, Dominic Solanke, Artur Boruc.Man United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Young; Fred, McTominay, Pereira; James, Rashford, Martial. Subs: Brandon Williams, James Garner, Marcos Rojo, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Mason Greenwood, Sergio Romero.
Kevin Hatchard on why Liverpool should be excited about signing Takumi Minamino AFP or licensors 2 Good news Bayern Munich fans, you can buy an exact replica of Philippe Countino’s matchday shirt on the cheap this Christmas – because he’s been wearing CHILDREN’S shirts during his loan spell in Germany.Bundesliga.com have revealed the pint-sized Brazilian has been forced to wear kits made for kids throughout his time at Bayern, because none of their adult-sized shirts fit him properly! The German champions apparently made their kit order for the first half of the season with suppliers Adidas before Coutinho completed his loan move from Barcelona in the summer.Usually, players wear ‘authentic’ shirts, which are lighter, dry quicker, feature heat-transferred logos and which cost over £100 for fans who want the same kits as their heroes.Most supporters, though, buy ‘replica’ jerseys, which are made of a standard material with fewer details and cost around £70.But Coutinho fans can get hold of his home shirt for a much cheaper price – £45 in fact – as he has been wearing junior replica home shirts this season.None of the ‘authentic’ shirts the club had in stock fit the 5ft 6in former Liverpool star when he arrived, and so he has been forced to wear a different style of kit to his team-mates. Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:45Loaded: 9.44%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -1:45 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreen Coutinho has found his form again at Bayern after his difficult move to Barcelona AFP or licensors It doesn’t appear to have affected his form, though – which isn’t great marketing for Adidas’ expensive kits – as he was named Man of the Match for his stunning hat-trick and two assists in Bayern’s 6-1 victory over Werder Breman on Saturday wearing the much cheaper shirt.The Brazilian playmaker has enjoyed a return to form in Germany, with seven goals and seven assists in 20 games for Bayern this term.It’s only the home shirt that’s a problem, though. Bayern’s ‘authentic’ away and Champions League shirts do fit Coutinho.The Bundesliga have confirmed he will finally match his team-mates and receive an adult shirt that fits him when Bayern return from their winter break.But not before he dons his little one last time, as Bayern host Wolfsburg in their final match of 2019 at the weekend. 2 There are a few subtle differences between Coutinho’s shirt and the rest of the Bayern Munich team
Gardaí caught a vehicle in Donegal over the weekend which had not been taxed in 19 months.The Roads Policing Unit were carrying out Mandatory Intoxication Testing (MIT) in Burnfoot on Monday when they detected a Hyundai Wagon (pictured above).The vehicle’s tax had expired in March 2017. Gardaí detained the car and issued a fine to the driver. Details of the case were shared on the @GardaTraffic Twitter account. Car with tax 19 months out of date detained by gardaí was last modified: October 30th, 2018 by Staff WriterShare 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)