20Oct/20

Letters to the Editor for Thursday, May 23

first_imgIsrael honors victims by refusing to yieldSadly, Matt Oill and others of his ilk overlook the terrorist actions of the Palestinians: rockets into residential areas, suicide bombers, and, yes, raising their children to hate Israel and throw rocks and worse. Israel is reactive, not proactive. Hamas and other Palestinians attack Israel, including but not limited to peaceful citizens on buses, in cafes and in their homes. And their leaders misdirect funds and materials designed to improve the lot of their citizens, not only for rockets and bombs, but to build tunnels into Israel for kidnappings and attacks, with cement that could have built schools, hospitals and homes. These are funds that could have fed citizens and created jobs.If the Palestinians were to recognize Israel’s right to exist and stop their aggression, they could live in peace with Israel and all could prosper.The Holocaust gave rise to the expression “Never again.” Israel honors those who were murdered by refusing to yield to those who would destroy it, those who would destroy the only true democracy in the Middle East, where citizens of all faiths can live in peace if only allowed to do so.Bruce S. TrachtenbergNiskayuna Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionPut Liberty back, fix local traffic patternsEnough. Put Lady Liberty back on her pedestal.Mess around with the disaster that is the Eastbound Western Gateway Sidewalk wall/view stopper/dirt cyclone generator. Or, the idiocy that is the eastbound traffic from Washington Avenue attempting to move left, contending with three lanes of commuters and then clashing with the exiting GE/Mont Pleasant traffic off I-890 as that traffic descends, out of the sky, into a blind spot, with the intention of moving to a right-hand lane. All the while traveling, at varying speed, around a tight curve.I have at least six more suggestions for a remedial civil engineering class at Union, RPI, or HVCC to work on, if anyone cares.Dick CurtisSchenectady World is less better without Frank DuciThe world is a less better place with the loss of Frank Duci. I used to work with him downtown in GE in Building 55, and he always had a smile for everyone.I found him to be a man of his word. I used to play in a softball league when they had the diamonds in the park. They were in pretty bad shape. So I asked him if the city could do anything about them.He made a date with me to go and look at them. It was a super-hot day, but he said he would go. So he did, and he took his time and looked at all the fields. The next thing I knew, they were being repaired and much better to play on.When they were talking about limiting dogs to three per household, I explained to him that I had a state license that allowed me to have up to 10 dogs. So he invited me to the next town meeting that was to discuss the issue. The town dog catcher was there and she insisted that dogs cause dirt and cockroaches. I told her to come to my house and if she could find one cockroach, I would give her a year of my salary.Frank had the limit instituted and excepted individuals with state licenses.He was a really great guy and looked out for the people, especially the little guy. Like I said, the world is a less better place without him and too bad there aren’t more like him.He was always easy to reach if you needed to talk to him. Now with some people, they are just too busy to be bothered. So, all I can say is rest in peace, Frank.Wanda HunterSchenectadycenter_img Thanks to stranger who helped with tireOn May 16, the tire pressure light went on as I was taking my granddaughters to dinner. I stopped at Stewart’s on upper Union Street to fix the problem. As I was finishing, a man offered to check the tires with his gauge. I was so thankful for the help. It is heartwarming to know that this stranger was willing to take the time to help me.Valerie SantoSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

20Oct/20

Boldly beginning to build up

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20Oct/20

Industrial: The price isn’t right

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

19Oct/20

SOE Ministry demands assessment of halted high-speed railway project

first_img“We’re currently gathering information [regarding the project] in order to take further action,” he said.The Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway project is one of the government’s national strategic projects (PSN) in the transportation sector and is expected to require a total investment of US$6.07 billion.The railway project will serve four main stations: Halim in Jakarta, Karawang in West Java and Walini and Tegaluar in Bandung regency. A total of 80 km of the railway will be elevated, while a further 16.9 km will be in tunnels.The trains will travel at 350 km per hour, cutting travel time between Jakarta and Bandung to 45 minutes, faster than the approximately three hours on the existing train. (mpr) The State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Ministry has demanded a full assessment of the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway project over environmental and human concerns.It also demanded consortium PT Kereta Cepat Indonesia China (KCIC), which is developing the railway, repair its drainage system. The system has been blamed for inundating the Jakarta-Cikampek toll road located near the project, causing traffic congestion in the area.“I’ve requested PT KCIC conduct a full evaluation regarding the weaknesses of project management that have caused environmental damage,” SOEs Minister Erick Thohir said in a press release on Monday. In a letter sent to PT KCIC on Feb. 27, the Public Works and Housing Ministry (PUPR) demanded the project be halted for two weeks starting from March 2, citing the project’s poor drainage system.Erick said the company must file a report in two weeks regarding its progress on drainage system repairs and environmental management.“We appreciate and fully support the PUPR Ministry’s action to halt the project for two weeks,” he said.Separately, the Transportation Ministry’s secretary-general Djoko Sasono said on Monday that the ministry would carry out an internal discussion regarding the issue before taking further steps.center_img Topics :last_img read more

19Oct/20

PREMIUMState-owned companies promise higher dividends, stock buyback to help economy

first_imgState-owned companies have come to the rescue against the backdrop of a crashing domestic stock market and cash-strapped state budget by promising share buybacks and disbursing higher dividends earlier to cushion the economic impacts of COVID-19.All four state-owned banks have allocated larger dividends earlier than last year as the government struggles with low tax collection and the need to disburse more money to stimulate a cooling economy.The country’s largest bank by assets, publicly listed Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI), announced in February its plan to distribute Rp 20.6 trillion (US$1.5 billion) in dividends to its shareholders this year. The dividends are equal to 60 percent of the bank’s profits in 2019, higher than its previous payout ratio of 50 percent.Bank Mandiri also decided to give out bigger dividends this year, with plans to distribute Rp 16.49 tr… Linkedin LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here Topics : Log in with your social account Google Facebook Forgot Password ? state-owned-enterprises bank-mandiri Bank-Rakyat-Indonesia Bank-Negara-Indonesia bank-tabungan-negara dividend profit Sri-Mulyani-Indrawati tax-collection state-budget deficitlast_img read more

19Oct/20

Historic women’s golf event in Saudi Arabia set for October

first_imgThe tour has been on hold since the South African Women’s Open finished on March 14, with the next scheduled event the Jabra Ladies Open at the Evian Resort Golf Club in France from June 18-20. Topics : The first women’s professional golf event to be staged in Saudi Arabia has been rescheduled for Oct. 8-11 after it was postponed last month due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizers have confirmed.The Saudi Ladies International, which is part of the Ladies European Tour (LET), will be hosted at the Royal Greens Golf & Country Club with a purse of $1 million, and is the first of its kind to be held in the kingdom.”We have been extremely impressed by Golf Saudi’s commitment to working through the challenges and making this historic event happen,” Alexandra Armas, LET CEO, said in a statement on Tuesday.last_img read more

19Oct/20

German lockdown ‘snitches’ spark hot debate

first_imgPoisoning social relations  “Not all of the calls lead to police intervention,” said Heidi Vogt, a spokeswoman for the police in Berlin.At the end of March, overwhelmed by complaints, police in the German capital appealed to residents on Twitter to stop calling the 110 emergency number, stressing that it was “not designed for lockdown breaches”.Andreas Geisel, interior minister for the city-state of Berlin, called on citizens to restrain themselves.”We don’t want any snitching,” he told RBB radio. “With a soft lockdown like we have in Germany at the moment, people’s continued freedom depends on their ability to contain themselves,” political historian Klaus-Peter Sick told AFP.”If a group of young people are behaving in an undisciplined way, some people will see that as irresponsible and not thinking about others,” which can lead to frustration and denunciation, he said.But some informers are motivated less by social responsibility and more by the desire to settle personal scores.”This is always the case in times of crisis, especially when they give rise to new regulations that make it possible to invoke justice: anyone who is jealous of their neighbor now has the opportunity to denounce them for the slightest violation of the coronavirus rules,” said Behr.”That poisons social relations.” Telling on your neighbors is a highly sensitive subject in a country still haunted by memories of Nazism and the former communist dictatorship in East Germany, two regimes under which informing on others was practically a national policy.The term “Duninziant” (“snitch”) has been trending on Twitter, fuelling ever more reference to the Third Reich and the Stasi secret police.”All of this appears to confirm a deep-seated prejudice that Germans have against themselves: That when in doubt, a part of the population is willing to become an extension of state power,” psychology professor Christian Stoecker told Der Spiegel weekly.But Germany is not the only country to have seen a rise in the number of people reporting fellow citizens to the authorities for breaching virus-related social distancing rules. Similar observations have been made in countries around the world where lockdowns have been imposed: In New Zealand, a dedicated website was deluged with reports; in South Africa, a wedding was interrupted after an anonymous call; and in France, the emergency number 17 has been overrun with calls. On a sunny Sunday in April, 20 people were enjoying a barbecue in the city of Schwerin in northern Germany.The police promptly intervened, slapping them with a fine for breaking new social distancing rules to limit the spread of COVID-19.They were alerted to the festivities by a neighbor, “outraged by such behavior”, who also proceeded to boast about her efforts on social media, opening up a heated debate about the return of denunciation to Germany and whether it is acceptable in the current crisis.center_img Universal phenomenon “The phenomenon is universal, but with different regional characteristics. It happens more often in urban areas, where many people depend on each other, than in less populated areas where you have more space,” said Rafael Behr, a professor of criminology and sociology at the Hamburg Police Academy.”Acts of denunciation will increase, as will acts of solidarity,” he predicts.”The longer the state of emergency goes on, the more antisocial people will become and the more mistrust and suspicion will develop, for example about whether your neighbor is contagious.”In Germany, police are receiving several hundred complaints a day via phone calls, emails and social media, according to an AFP tally.In Munich alone, “around 100 to 200 citizens are calling every day” with violations to report, according to Sven Mueller, a spokesman for the city’s police force.In the state of Brandenburg, which surrounds Berlin, police intervened in 2,930 violations of social distancing rules between March 20 and April 7.”Around two thirds of these cases were linked to reports from citizens,” said police spokeswoman Stefanie Klaus.The majority of complaints are about people entering public spaces such as stadiums, parties in private homes or cars with license plates from outside the area. Topics :last_img read more

19Oct/20

Novel coronavirus may have been spreading in China in August, Harvard research indicates

first_img“While we cannot confirm if the increased volume was directly related to the new virus, our evidence supports other recent work showing that emergence happened before identification at the Huanan Seafood market.””These findings also corroborate the hypothesis that the virus emerged naturally in southern China and was potentially already circulating at the time of the Wuhan cluster,” according to the research.It showed a steep increase in hospital parking lot occupancy in August 2019.”In August, we identify a unique increase in searches for diarrhea which was neither seen in previous flu seasons or mirrored in the cough search data,” according to the research The novel coronavirus might have been spreading in China as early as August 2019, according to Harvard Medical School research based on satellite images of hospital travel patterns and search engine data.The research used high-resolution satellite imagery of hospital parking lots in Wuhan – where the disease emerged in late 2019 – and data for symptom-related queries on search engines for things such as “cough” and “diarrhea”.”Increased hospital traffic and symptom search data in Wuhan preceded the documented start of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in December 2019,” according to the research. Topics :last_img read more

19Oct/20

North Korea rejects South’s offer of envoys, vows to redeploy troops to border

first_imgTopics : Moon “greatly favors sending special envoys for ‘tiding over crises’ and raises preposterous proposals frequently, but he has to clearly understand that such a trick will no longer work on us,” KCNA said.”The solution to the present crisis between the North and the South caused by the incompetence and irresponsibility of the South Korean authorities is impossible and it can be terminated only when proper price is paid.”There was no immediate comment from Moon’s office.Any moves to invalidate cross-border peace deals pose a major setback to Moon’s bid for more lasting reconciliation with the North, while complicating efforts to persuade Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear and missile programs. North Korea said on Wednesday it had rejected South Korea’s offer to send special envoys to ease escalating bilateral tensions, and vowed to redeploy troops to demilitarized border units in the latest step towards nullifying inter-Korean peace accords.The announcements made by state media agency KCNA came one day after North Korea blew up a joint liaison office set up in a border town as part of a 2018 agreement by the two countries’ leaders, as tensions flare over propaganda leaflets sent by defectors into the reclusive state.South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in on Monday offered to send his national security adviser Chung Eui-yong and spy chief Suh Hoon as special envoys. But Kim Yo Jong, the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and a senior ruling party official, “flatly rejected the tactless and sinister proposal,” KCNA said.center_img Kim Yo Jong also harshly criticized Moon in another KCNA statement, saying he had failed to implement any of the 2018 pacts and had made inter-Korean ties a “U.S. puppet.”In Monday’s speech, which marked the 20th anniversary of the first inter-Korean summit, Moon expressed regret that North Korea-U.S. and inter-Korean relations have not made progress as hoped but asked Pyongyang to maintain peace deals and return to dialogue.In a separate KCNA dispatch on Wednesday, a spokesman for the General Staff of the (North) Korean People’s Army (KPA) said it would dispatch troops to Mount Kumgang and Kaesong near the border, where the two Koreas had carried out joint economic projects in the past.Police posts that had been withdrawn from the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) will be reinstalled, while artillery units near the western sea border where defectors frequently send leaflets will be reinforced with the readiness alert heightened to the level of “top class combat duty,” the spokesman said.The North will also restart sending anti-Seoul leaflets across the border, he added.”Areas favorable for scattering leaflets against the South will open on the whole front line and our people’s drive for scattering leaflets will be guaranteed militarily and thorough-going security measures will be taken,” he said.The KPA said on Tuesday it had been studying an “action plan” to re-enter zones that had been demilitarized under a 2018 inter-Korean military pact and “turn the front line into a fortress.”Seoul’s defense ministry has urged North Korea to abide by the agreement, under which both sides vowed to cease “all hostile acts” and dismantled a number of structures along the DMZ. last_img read more

19Oct/20

Passenger allowed on Jakarta-Sorong flight despite testing positive for COVID-19

first_imgUnsure of how the student was allowed to board the flight, Farida speculated that Soekarno-Hatta International Airport health officials in Jakarta may have been overwhelmed by the large number of passengers that day.The Soekarno-Hatta Airport Health Office did not immediately respond to The Jakarta Post’s requests for comment.Farida said there were around 90 passengers on the Jakarta-Sorong flight. All of them have been instructed to undergo self-quarantine for the next two weeks.“Meanwhile, the 43 students will undergo swab tests at Sorong Pertamina Hospital,” she said.According to the official government count, Papua is among the provinces hit hardest by the coronavirus outbreak outside Java, with 1,670 confirmed cases and seven deaths as of Saturday.Topics : A passenger was allowed on a Garuda Indonesia flight from Jakarta to Sorong, Papua, despite having recently tested positive for COVID-19, Sorong health authorities have said.Sorong Airport Health Office coordinator Farida Tariq said that health officials discovered that the passenger, a 20-year-old student, had tested positive for the disease during a routine health document check conducted when the passengers arrived at Domine Eduard Osok Airport in Sorong on Saturday.According to the latest government regulations on air travel, all prospective passengers must provide documents showing a negative COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or rapid test result before being allowed to fly. The student, a resident of South Sorong regency, traveled to Sorong with a group of 42 other students.“We checked to ensure that all 43 students had the necessary documents, and one of them [had a document] showing their PCR test result was positive,” Farida said on Saturday as quoted by kompas.com.She added that the document was issued by a West Java Health Agency laboratory on June 21.Read also: Indonesian airlines resume domestic passenger flights with strict health protocolslast_img read more