Gov. Cuomo deserves credit for his progressive shift

first_imgAnd should Cuomo deliver in these first 100 days of his “new” administration, remaining grumpy will do little to further our cause. Rather, it’ll signal to Cuomo that he has little to gain from working with us – and he’ll go right to that position as centrist skeptic.Does that mean progressives should tuck themselves in and relax, trusting Cuomo has everything in hand? Absolutely not.But nor should we be so quick to reject his liberal reboot.Progressives should pay close attention to what the governor does in his third term – praising him when he earns it, and giving constructive criticism when he falls short of his promises. Steve Keller is a regular contributor to the Sunday Opinion section.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen? I’m hesitant to admit it, but over the last few months, his politics appear to have shifted leftward.His agenda for the upcoming legislative session is essentially a progressive bonanza — speedy legalization of marijuana, middle-class tax cuts, prison and bail reform, and other items that have languished on the liberal wish list for years. Has Cuomo the man changed? As I said in an April 2018 column, I don’t know, and I don’t really care. It doesn’t matter what politicians feel – I care whether they hear the public and what they do in response. In that column, I also wrote about how politicians like Cuomo could be convinced to pay attention: “You agitate, you fight, you stay grumpy, you threaten to vote for someone else, and you make politicians pay a political price for ignoring you.Staying silent does nothing.”  In doing so, Cuomo managed to avoid having to respond to the truly progressive bills that would have otherwise crossed his desk. Cuomo once said he was “in lockstep” with Bernie Sanders.He wasn’t. But now, he may be marching to a different tune.And almost eight years after my first grumpy columns critiquing Cuomo’s conservatism, my resolution for the new year is to give our governor a second chance.Cuomo RebootedWhen Cuomo threw some pretty substantial bones to the left during his primary fight against Cynthia Nixon, I was concerned about him pivoting back to the center after the election was over. Thankfully, Cuomo doesn’t seem to have returned to his old ways. As of this moment, it looks like Cuomo has heard the call and joined the team.No doubt, his upcoming agenda could be more progressive.For example, it could include the New York Health Act, which would establish a single-payer healthcare system similar to those in many other developed countries.But in a counterintuitive sense, the incompleteness of Cuomo’s 2019 progressive agenda is exactly the reason he needs the left’s backing at this critical juncture. Consider this: Cuomo’s reaction to unified Democratic legislative control could have been to claim the center ground and declare himself a skeptic of the progressive bills that are sure to come out of the newly Democratic Senate. Yet Cuomo isn’t doing that.Instead, he’s advocating positions that sound like they came out of a Cynthia Nixon policy brief. He’s opposed raising taxes on the wealthy ever since – even to fund progressive programs like Pre-K education.Progressivism LiteCuomo has certainly presided over some liberal milestones – e.g., the $15 minimum wage, medical marijuana and free public college. But the key word is “presided.” In almost all of these cases, Cuomo either kept his cards close to the vest or fought the progressive position for as long as possible.When passage finally seemed inevitable (or sufficiently crowd-pleasing), he jumped on the bandwagon – usually watering down the final bill.Worst of all, Gov. Cuomo tacitly supported the now-defunct Independent Democratic Conference (IDC), a group of elected Democrats who helped the GOP control the Senate for about half of Cuomo’s governorship. Progressives Are Hard to PleaseAs a lifelong skeptic of Gov. Cuomo, it’s pretty strange to finally say this in print.But should he deliver on these promises, I’m ready to get on Team Cuomo – possibly even as a presidential candidate if that’s where the 2020 primaries take us.Other progressives should consider it, too. Unfortunately, I know we are a very hard group to satisfy.We have a knack for finding the speck in the ointment – even if the ointment represents a huge step in the right direction that we could have never previously imagined.That’s not to defend incrementalism. Instead, it’s to say we should acknowledge when our political pressure is successful.In 2019, progressives are no longer being ignored – it’s our shining hour. Categories: Editorial, OpinionFor The Sunday GazetteWhen I began writing columns for The Gazette in 2011, I was not too fond of Gov. Andrew Cuomo for a simple reason: He was way too conservative.It started with his first few budget proposals.Faced with a fiscal deficit in his first year in office, Gov. Cuomo could have taken a balanced approach.Instead, he chose to enact damaging cuts to Democratic priorities like education and housing – just as he instituted a property tax cap that shackled school districts’ ability to make up the revenue shortfall. Cuomo also initially opposed extending Gov. David Paterson’s 9 percent tax rate on income over $500,000. Though he ultimately renewed it, he declined to make it permanent, lowered the rate and exempted those making between $500,000 to $1 million.last_img read more

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Press Release: Great News for Teen Pregnancy Prevention (US)

first_imgAmerican College of Pediatricians 22 June 2016Family First Comment: Similar trend to NZ. Teens are saying NO. Yes – shock horror. Abstaining. And they’re doing better for it. Lower abortion rates. Lower teen pregnancy. Not rocket science. The American College of Pediatricians (the College) calls attention to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that reveals almost 60% of high school students today have never had sex. This represents an increase of 28% since 1991.  Amazing news! It demonstrates clearly that Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA), or sexual abstinence, is a relevant message for youth and a goal they can achieve.With the onset of puberty comes a natural interest in and attraction for sexual activity.  The decision to engage in recreational sexual activity or delay until marriage is one of the most important decisions a youth will make.  Sexual activity has powerful effects upon each participant’s mind, emotions and physical body that can yield life-long negative consequences.We also know from a new report on teen behavior by the CDC (http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/data/yrbs/results.htm) that Comprehensive Sex Education (CSE) is failing. Teens who do choose to engage in sexual activity are using less birth control; sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are on the rise, as is adolescent depression, sometimes referred to as the emotional STI.  Sexual abstinence is the only behavior choice that offers adolescents 100% protection against the triple epidemic of depression, STIs and teen pregnancy due to early sexual debut.The College urges all physicians, mental health professionals, educators and legislators to join parents in promoting sexual abstinence to youth as an attainable goal that is clearly the best for children. Many resources available to achieve this are found on the American College of Pediatricians website page, Sexual Responsibility (https://www.acpeds.org/parents/sexuality/sexual-responsibility-2).https://www.acpeds.org/great-news-for-teen-pregnancy-preventionlast_img read more

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McCoskrie v Vickers – Seymour should pull plug on his euthanasia bill

first_imgNZ Herald 9 June 2017Family First Comment: Politicians in NZ have rejected previous attempts to decriminalise euthanasia because the safeguards, while sounding good, would not guarantee the protection required for vulnerable people. The international evidence backs up these concerns.Euthanasia is a problem, not a solution.• COMMENT: Bob McCoskrie is national director of the lobby group Family First.Act MP David Seymour should pull the plug on his private member’s bill.Patients facing death have a fundamental human right to receive the very best palliative care, love and support that we can give to alleviate the ‘intolerable suffering’ that they fear. This is real ‘death with dignity’. Assisting their suicide is not the answer.Assisted suicide would place large numbers of vulnerable people at real risk – in particular those who are depressed, elderly, disabled, experiencing chronic illness, and who feel under emotional or financial pressure to request early death.They may come to feel euthanasia would be “the right thing to do”, they’ve “had a good innings”, and they do not want to be a “burden” to their nearest and dearest. Not a ‘right to die’ but a ‘duty to die’.A disability rights group in NZ said “There are endless ways of telling disabled people time and time again that their life has no value.”One of the disturbing underlying justifications for euthanasia is that euthanasia could result in valuable savings in public healthcare and geriatric services expenditure. This is a disturbing development, perhaps unintentional, but a real risk.The push for assisted suicide also presents a serious risk to public health and safety because there is a ‘social contagion’ aspect to suicide – assisted or non-assisted. We need more discussion about suicide prevention. You don’t discourage suicide by assisting suicide.Politicians in NZ have rejected previous attempts to decriminalise euthanasia because the safeguards, while sounding good, would not guarantee the protection required for vulnerable people.The international evidence backs up these concerns.Euthanasia is a problem, not a solution.http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11872478Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

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Pardew: Magpies are ready to go

first_img Press Association And he insists there is no reason why his side cannot put the memories of last season’s struggle behind them and regain the form that saw them sweep to fifth place in the 2011-12 campaign. Pardew said: “There is always that special feeling when the Premier League is kicking off and I think we’ve worked hard on pre-season and got the group in fantastic condition. “You can never read too much into pre-season – two years ago we lost to Leeds in our final pre-season game and were all over the place, but we went on to finish fifth. “What I do know is the guys are fitter than they’ve ever been under my management and they’re ready to go. “Last year was difficult for us, not only with the extra games but also because it was compounded by an injury crisis. We will be better armed next time we go into Europe and that’s where we want to play.” Pardew’s lack of success in bringing in new players this summer – his only addition so far, Loic Remy, is ruled out with a thigh strain – comes in sharp contrast to the millions splashed by City’s new boss Manuel Pellegrini. But Pardew believes rather than being daunted by their opening fixture, his side have a magnificent chance to produce a performance which will be seen as a statement of intent for the season ahead. Pardew added: “It’s a psychological game for us in terms of putting ourselves in the minds of everybody with a really strong performance and hopefully we’ll get some points out of it. “City have invested heavily again and obviously they will be one of the top contenders for the title, so it is going to be a tough game but it is one we are more than ready for. “Pellegrini’s style is not too different to Roberto Mancini but I think there is more of an emphasis on being forward-thinking and they will look to put more pressure on us when we have got the ball. “We need to take care but the ideal scenario is to get a result of some kind and I think we’ve got the players to do it. We’ve got some fabulous players and we’ve got an opportunity, and hopefully we can take it.” The Magpies head to Manchester City on Monday with plenty of cause to celebrate the end of a summer break marked by behind-the-scenes upheaval, transfer woe and a high-profile sponsorship dispute. But Pardew has remained remarkably upbeat through all the issues, not least the controversial appointment of former boss Joe Kinnear as the club’s new director of football. Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is adamant any talk of frustration at St James’ Park could not be further from the truth and his team are better prepared than ever for the new Barclays Premier League season ahead.last_img read more

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Suspected Bubonic plague in China ‘being well managed’, says World Health Organization

first_imgAuthorities in the city of Bayannur, in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia, issued a warning on Sunday after a hospital patient, reported to be a herdsman, contracted the disease from eating marmot meat last week.There were four reported cases of plague in people in the same region last November, including two cases of the deadlier pneumonic plague.The case triggered a level-three alert Sunday in the Bayannur district. Health officials released a statement ordering residents not to hunt wild animals, such as rodents like marmots, and to report anyone with fever or showing other possible signs of infection.The infected herdsman is being treated at a hospital and is in stable condition, according to state reports. While occasional cases are still reported among hunters encountering fleas carrying the bacterium, it is unknown how the man became infected.last_img read more

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Badgers trounce Chanticleers in home opener

first_imgThe men’s basketball team did not need its lead swingman Alando Tucker to help defeat Coastal Carolina 92-54 in its home opener Saturday. The Badgers instead turned to guardKammron Taylor to help lead the unblemished team (3-0) to a blowout victory.”I don’t really look at the margin [of victory],” Badger head coach Bo Ryan said after the game. “I’m just looking at ball movement and how we handled their scorers.””It was 40 minutes of effort.”Tucker, who had been averaging 22.7 points per game, was held to an abominable five points. Tucker now averages 18.3 points per game, which ranks second on the team, courtesy of Taylor’s 20-point effort Saturday. Taylor now leads UW with 18.5 points per game.Taylor jump-started the game for the Badgers with a 3-pointer and never looked back. In the first half, UW went on a 26-5 run and outscored Coastal Carolina 29-4 to open the second half. Wisconsin also had a season-low 11 turnovers. “If we’d have played [Friday] it probably wouldn’t have looked as crisp,” Ryan said, referring to the day after a Thanksgiving feast. “When you come back from some of these tournaments and you travel awhile and you come through all these time zones and you get in different hours; some teams struggle with that. I thought tonight our guys kept focused on the things we have to do.”Brian Butch joined Taylor to lead the way for Wisconsin. They were the only two Badgers who scored in double figures. Butch put up 17 points and came within one rebound of his first career double-double.Picking up Tucker’s slack were nine UW players who scored five or more points, with 11 players in all scoring for UW.”[Tucker] didn’t have to shoot a lot. [Tucker] was getting a lot of attention,” Ryan said, adding that the performance from the rest of the team was also encouraging. “Our guys were active.”The Badgers shot 54 percent from the field, while holding the Chanticleers (Chanticleer: A rooster who rules the barnyard with cunning and wit) to only 38 percent shooting, and a witless 28 percent in the first half.Wisconsin also was dominant from the free-throw line, making 20 of 30 while Coastal Carolina only managed seven points from the charity stripe.Early in the game Wisconsin built up a lead with solid outside shooting, making three of their first four shots from beyond the arc. As the game progressed, the team asserted their authority in the post more and more against an undersized Chanticleer team whose tallest player was a generous 6’7,” ending the game with 48 points in the paint, compared to Coastal Carolina’s 14.”The littler guys, the smaller guys who are in there against the taller guys and haven’t played against taller teams, they tend to chest up and get their elbows in there and it isn’t as easy as it looks,” Ryan said of his team’s size advantage.Coastal Carolina was lead by forward Moses Sonko who contributed 19 points and five rebounds in the losing effort. Swingman Pele Paelay was the only other Chanticleer to reach double digits.Wisconsin also gave impressive sophomore Jack Leasure a night to forget. Leasure, the 2005 Big South Freshman of the Year, struggled to only seven points on 2-16 shooting, and had seven turnovers.”This young man can shoot, but this night he just had one of those nights,” Coastal Carolina head coach Buzz Peterson said.Sophomore reserve point guard Michael Flowers also had a very impressive game, scoring nine points on 3-4 shooting, with five rebounds, five steals, two assists and a block and also had what was certainly the play of the game. Flowers blocked a shot by Leasure, who recovered the ball. Flowers then stole the pass from Leasure to a Coastal Carolina teammate. Flowers then pushed the ball up the floor and lobbed the ball up to a trailing DeAaron Williams, who punctuated the play with a fierce slam.”[Flowers] was just huge,” Ryan said. “He just refused to get discouraged on some screens, on positioning … he’s a great defensive player.”last_img read more

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Hockey heavyweights speak at Marshall

first_imgThe Marshall School of Business Sports Business Institute hosted Luc Robitaille, president of business operations for the Los Angeles Kings, and Michael Schulman, CEO of the Anaheim Ducks, at Town & Gown on Thursday night for an event called “The Business of Hockey.”In addition to presentations on management, leadership and navigating the changing landscape of the National Hockey League, the three-hour event included an attendee networking session, a panel discussion with Q&A and a closing reception.Established in 2005, the Sports Business Institute serves as the destination for knowledge about the sports industry.“We really thought that we could own thought leadership when it comes to the business of sports,” said David Carter, the executive director of Sports Business Institute. “So we started doing some research, doing some consulting work in the industry and hosting special events like the one we’re doing tonight on the business of hockey.”Robitaille, the highest scoring left wing National Hockey League in history and the all-time Kings leader in goals scored, explained that there is potential revenue growth in social media.During the presentation, Robitaille and Schulman agreed that there is not a lot of potential grown in the ticket box but that they are looking to increase revenue by broadcasting hockey games in movie theaters through a deal with NBC Sports.The speakers also talked about sustaining their fan base through sparking their interest in the sport at an early age. Schulman said that they currently have 41 high school hockey teams mainly in Orange County participating in its 2014-2015 season, and are hoping to target an even younger population — children from 4 to 8 years old — in the near future.Open to the general public, this event was the inaugural Business of Team Sports event series and had around 250 attendees, many of whom were students and alumni.“I’m actually a really big Kings fan so I’ve been following them since I was a little girl. Through my program, I’m trying to figure out which source of management I’m interested in,” aid Sara Stevens, a freshman majoring in Management Engineering at Claremont McKenna College.  “Sports have been something I’ve been following since childhood and I just thought that maybe I’ll want to go into it.”Ghazzal Rezvan, a senior majoring in business administration with a minor in sports media studies, shared the same enthusiasm.“I’ve always wanted to work in this industry and this event was everything I expected it to be,” Rezvan said.Rezvan is an intern with the Sports Business Institute and said that Robitaille was a speaker in one of Carter’s courses.A silent auction featuring Kings and Ducks items was held throughout the duration of the event.Carter said he hopes to engage the entire community, both academic and those who work in sports.“We’re going to have a lot of traditional business executives here, folks from local sports franchises, so it’s intended for everybody. We have a strong support of alumni here tonight as well as industry people,” Carter said.last_img read more

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Beat writers predict No. 8 Syracuse’s matchup with No. 12 Notre Dame

first_imgNo. 8 Syracuse (5-2, 1-1 Atlantic Coast), in the top-10 for the first time this year, plays it’s first road game of the season Saturday against No. 12 Notre Dame (4-3, 0-1). The Orange are coming off a come-from-behind win over then-No. 2 Duke and look to extend its winning streak to four.Here’s what the beat writers expect for the outcome of the game.Andrew Graham (5-2)The state of IndianaSyracuse 13, Notre Dame 10I’m confident that Syracuse is better than Notre Dame, but I just don’t know how much so. On paper, SU has the offense to crack the Fighting Irish’s stout defense and get to goalie Matt Schmidt and the defense necessary to stymie the likes of Brendan Gleason and Bryan Costabile. Syracuse’s two biggest advantages in this matchup are the two most specialized positions: goalie and faceoff specialist. At the faceoff X, Jakob Phaup is one of the best in the country, winning 66 percent of draws he takes. UND’s Charles Leonard is comparable (55.4 percent) but not close. In net, Drake Porter’s saving more than half the shots he faces while Schmidt is saving less. Ultimately, Syracuse gets this one done, hopefully with no overtime, and moves closer to getting a Thursday bye in the ACC tournament.Michael McCleary (5-2)Dismiss me, I’m IrishSyracuse 14, Notre Dame 10AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHere’s how I think this will go: Notre Dame will score the first three goals of the match, and every one of us will immediately say, “Darn. Was it a good idea to count on Syracuse to stay hot?” But it might happen in the second, it might happen in the third, it might happen in the fourth — Syracuse is going to come back, it’s going to push away, and it’s going to jump ahead. The Orange all said last week that they need to do something about the slow starts they’ve been having. While it won’t complain about a come-from-behind win over then-No. 2 Duke, SU doesn’t want to fall behind early in the game. This may be the game where Syracuse leads the entire time. It doesn’t matter, though. The Orange will end this game with the higher score.Nick Alvarez (3-4)Parks and wrecked Syracuse 15, Notre Dame 9 I should probably start picking Syracuse. right? Whatever preseason expectations you had for this team probably lurched forward after last Sunday’s upset over then-No. 2 Duke. The Orange are dangerous because they’ve shown that a comeback can overcome any talent disparity. It’s happened three weekends in a row. This Saturday, though, SU is going to jump ahead early and control the game. Think the course-correcting win against Albany. Tyson Bomberry and Nick Mellen have locked in and Notre Dame can’t rely on the “big-little” strategy that most teams have tried against Syracuse since the Virginia game one month ago. Stephen Rehfuss is trending upward and Brendan Curry played hero-ball a week ago. Give me the Orange in an easy showcase. Comments Published on March 30, 2019 at 11:19 am Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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Foley rings the changes for Munster.

first_imgWith Billy Holland named alongside Paul O’Connell in the second row, while captain Peter O’Mahony is joined by Sean Dougall and Robin Copeland in the back row.The changes to the backline see Denis Hurley and Pat Howard return as the centre partnership, with JJ Hanrahan moving to out-half.In the final change, Johne Murphy starts at fullback and joins wingers Simon Zebo and Andrew Conway in the back three.Tipperary’s Dave Foley and Tommy O’Donnell will not feature in the match-day squad.The game kicks-off at 2.40. Munster have named their side for their round ten Pro12 clash against Glasgow Warriors tomorrow.Coach Anthony Foley makes eight personnel changes to the starting side that suffered defeat to Clermont last Sunday.In the pack Kevin O’Byrne and Stephen Archer join John Ryan in the front row.last_img read more

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MTN FA CUP:Kotoko weave four goals past Agbozome

first_imgAsante Kotoko are through to the last 16 of the MTN FA Cup after defeating third-tier side, Agbozome Weavers 4-1 on Wednesday in Ho.The Porcupine Warriors are now through to the fourth round stage of the Cup competition where they will meet Rainbow FC in Kumasi.Kotoko were up two-nil before the break in the outstanding Round of 32 fixture before adding two more after the interval.Abdul Aziz, Awudu Nafiu, Eric Donkor and man-of-the-match Prince Baffoe got the goals for Kotoko.Agbozome scored their consolation through a penalty converted by Akwesi Ahor or after Kotoko had taken a commanding four-goal lead.last_img read more

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