What value should be ascribed to a painting put together by the EU’s finance ministers and national bank governors over the course of a well-fuelled dinner?Guests at the Ecofin meeting were asked to wield a paintbrush in a good cause. The painting is to be auctioned in aid of an Austrian charity over the Easter weekend. Clearly it is a priceless work of art, even if it did feature a few too many currency symbols. Prominent amid the scribblings was a subtle message about Malta’s ambitions for eurozone membership.
Trey Anastasio Band has released a new live album, Burn It Down, on all digital platforms. As Anastasio explains in a note announcing the new release, the record is comprised of cuts from Trey Anastasio Band’s January 2020 tour mixed by Vance Powell, who worked on Phish‘s 2020 album, Sigma Oasis, as well as Trey’s 2019 Ghosts of the Forest album.Read the full note from Trey Anastasio announcing the coming release of live album Burn It Down below:Over the past few years there’s been an indescribable momentum with TAB. The band seems to get tighter with each successive tour. This past January, we were firing on all cylinders, and it was reflected in the faces of the people coming to the shows. I could feel it and see it every single night — the intensity of the dancing, the smiles on people’s faces, the feeling of unity.So immediately after that tour, I put plans in motion to begin a TAB album in the spring. The pandemic changed those plans, and when everything was cancelled, I began working at home on what would later become Lonely Trip.Meanwhile, my friend Vance Powell, who produced this new TAB album, called and told me there was already enough great material on tape from the January tour to make the best TAB album ever, and make it a live album. So he started sending me mixes. I loved them. We both agreed that Burn It Down, a line from the song ‘Set Your Soul Free,’ was the perfect title, because it encapsulated exactly what had been happening onstage every night.When I listen to this album, it reminds me how much I miss playing live music. In some ways, it’s hard for me to listen for that reason. I can’t wait to experience this again. I miss it so much.Added Vance Powell in a press release, “Producing and mixing Burn It Down has been absolutely one of my favorite projects ever. The band is slamming!”Listen to Burn It Down, the new live album from the Trey Anastasio Band, below via Spotify or via the platform of your choice here. Trey Anastasio Band – Burn It Down – Track ListingCamel WalkSandSet Your Soul FreeAbout To RunOliviaRise Come TogetherDark And DownUndermindAlive AgainEther SundayPlasmaLove Is What We AreMozambiqueSimple Twist Up DaveFirst TubeView ‘Burn It Down’ Track ListingWhile his 2020 tours were axed along with the rest of the industry, Trey Anastasio has been keeping plenty busy amid the ongoing pandemic. In addition to Phish’s Sigma Oasis, Trey also released a quarantine solo album, Lonely Trip, and served as the first musical guest to perform in-studio on a late-night talk show post-Covid when he performed with The Roots on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.On Thursday, Trey appeared as part of the City Parks Foundation virtual SummerStage Jubilee stream on Thursday, September 17th at 8:00 p.m. alongside Sting, Leslie Odom Jr., Roseanne Cash, and more. Anastasio performed a pair of songs, “Everything’s Right” and “More”, spoke about his love for the city and Central Park, and shared his memories of seeing David Bowie sit in with Arcade Fire at SummerStage. Relive the entire benefit stream here.
BRIDGE CITY — Aaron Brannen became the first modern-day Bridge City athlete to ever secure three UIL gold medals in one school year. Adding the mile run on Saturday to Friday’s two-mile and last fall’s cross country Class 3A state championships, Brannen cruised home to victory in the boys 1,600-meter run by slightly more than a full three seconds. It’s not that blistering time which his coach Rick Miller would have wished — sub-4:20 — but a 4:25.34 more than enabled Brannen to have breathing room from challengers Brad Mullens of Waco Robinson (4:28.35) and Mitchell Driver of Princeton (4:29.25). The seeds in Aaron’s gold-rush pursuit were planted here a year ago at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the UT-Austin campus when the dark-haired, freckle-faced junior with braces had to settle for silver medals in both the mile and two-mile. That experience taught Brannen a valuable lesson — that coming to the 95th annual University Interscholastic League state track and field championships was all about winning and nothing else. Such analysis played into Aaron’s race strategy in Friday morning’s 3,200 meters and Saturday afternoon’s 1,600 meters. The idea of winning also caused the West Orange-Stark quartet of Jacoby Franks, Jerrod Lewis, Earl Thomas and a weakened Kenneth Beasley to feel somewhat disappointed even though it combined for a season-best bronze medal time of 1:27.92. Beasley had not practiced at all for the past two weeks after being hospitalized shortly after the 3A regional meet due to pneumonia. A stronger, sharper Beasley arguably would have been hard-pressed to defeat state champ Cuero’s time of 1:26.50 but Beasley would have been able to have held off silver medalist Daingerfield’s late charge (1:27.89). “I got a lot of recovery time and I felt good,” Brannen said after overtaking the pack midway into the third of four laps. “We had two runners go out very fast but I stayed with my pace. I knew I had the kick to come around and win. My throat was dry but it didn’t seem to slow me down any. “I knew those two would slow down and I knew Mullens would be strong at the end.” The victory also enabled Brannen’s outstanding instructor to retire from coaching on top. Twelve-year distance-running tutor Rick Miller announced that he intended to remain at the high school as a science teacher but to stop coaching distance runners in track as well as cross country. “Aaron ran a smart race,” Miller said. “He didn’t get that 4:20 but he could have if he had been pushed. I just want those kids to know how privileged I’ve been to be a part of this. Those kids came out every morning and pushed Aaron to work for this. They’ve all been important in supporting him.” Brannen’s consistency was evidenced in his quarter-mile splits of 66, 66, 67 and 66.3. He stood in sixth place just two seconds off the pace after one lap and remained two seconds back in fourth place at the halfway point. Midway into the third lap (1,000 meters), he took over the race with a cushion of eight meters after three laps. The margin bulged to 20 on the victory lap. “I’m happy with my performance,” he said. “I got spiked at the very start of the race but it didn’t matter that much. I had worked hard all season.” The final chapter was slightly disappointing for Beasley, the University of Texas football signee, who gallantly fought off pneumonia in his final high school track performance. Teammate Earl Thomas ran a strong wind 21.7 into a fierce south wind, but Daingerfield overtook Beasley just before the finish line, causing WO-S to settle for third. “I think it took a big toll,” WO-S first-year coach Toby Foreman said of Beasley. “It definitely showed at the end. He was throwing up most of the weekend. When he got the stick, you could tell it wasn’t him.” The Mustangs still managed to lower their previous season-best (1:28.82 at regionals) by nearly a full second. Foreman indicated that Thomas, a junior, was the first WO-S athlete ever to earn three bronze state medals (for football, basketball and track and field) in one school year.
Several inmates were injured following simultaneous fights at the U.S. Penitentiary early Tuesday morning. About 7:45 a.m. June 15, a fight ensued began at the recreation yard at the federal Correctional Complex. At around the same time, several additional fights began throughout the institution. Several inmates were treated for minor injuries in the Health Services Department at the complex.Additional staff from the complex responded to the institution and the incidents were immediately contained, according to a press release from the Office of the Warden.“The institution is secure and at no time was there a threat to public safety,” according to the press release. “We are currently investigating the circumstances surrounding this incident.”
Westwood Mayor John Yé and challenger Jim Donovan listen to a question from moderator Brian Brown.Candidates for Westwood mayor and council all backed the development of the Entercom property during a candidate forum Wednesday with strong support for the Shawnee Mission School District building a new Westwood View Elementary on the site.Incumbent Mayor John Yé revealed that the school board is poised to vote on a deal to buy the property at its next meeting. He said the city had negotiated a right of first refusal on the current property if the school moves across the street or on the Entercom property if the school district buys it and cannot build. “We are in a position to control our own destiny,” Yé said.His opponent, Jim Donovan, also had said he would work with the district to help them with the property. Donovan added he was “also in favor of free market enterprise.” The question asked about neighboring properties and Donovan said the city had a balloon payment coming on its purchase of the church on Rainbow. He said he doesn’t know where the city will get the money for it.Candidates for city council, including David Waters, Jeff Harris and Margaret Bowen also specifically supported a new Westwood View on the property and said Dennis Park should be refurbished. Candidate Jayme Tebow said she wants to see Entercom developed, but also wants to see renderings and talk about adjacent properties after Entercom is settled.The forum, sponsored by the Northeast Johnson County Chamber of Commerce and Prairie Village Post, drew a standing room only crowd to the city hall community room. Candidates had the questions in advance to prepare.On the Woodside Village project, Donovan suggested that the school district and fire district should be involved in the Tax Increment Financing negotiation for phase two of the project. “Let’s position ourselves better,” he said. Regarding the first phase now under construction, Donovan said, “it is what it is and we can’t do a whole lot.”Yé said seeing that the developer completes the project is important for the city and that keeping the safety standards of the city high would be an important step. Traffic patterns also might be affected by the high density project, he said.Several candidates backed a neighborhood revitalization plan to help improve housing stock and said the city needs to accommodate young families who want to stay in Westwood, but who outgrow their houses.Candidates also addressed communication with residents and encouraging walkability.Donovan said public engagement should be the “cornerstone” for the city. “I’m all about transparency,” he said, promising to have information out in advance.Yé said the city can always do better on communication, but said the city has never turned down a meeting and responds to all questions. He said there is a need to “get away from conspiracy (theory)” about the city and “weed through the negativity.”Westwood City Council candidates Jayme Tebow, David Waters, Margaret Bowen and Jeff Harris.
Claeys not looking for “total overhaul” of offense Ben GotzNovember 30, 2015Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintBy Mike HendricksonTracy Claeys is already making Minnesota’s staff his own.Minnesota’s head coach said Monday morning it was a difficult decision to not renew the contracts of former offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Matt Limegrover and former quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator Jim Zebrowski, but he wanted to run things differently on offense.Claeys said the main reason for the change is that he only wanted one person calling plays on offense. Limegrover and Zebrowski shared played calling duties. “I love 75, 80 percent of what we do, so this isn’t going to be a total overhaul,” Claeys said. “The main thing is just getting back to a one-structure, one guy in charge on game day.”The search of a new offensive coordinator, offensive line coach and quarterbacks coach may go until the end of January, Claeys said, though the positions could be filled before then.Claeys said in an “ideal world,” he would only make two new hires. One would serve as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach and the other would be the offensive line coach.Adding just two members to the coaching staff would allow Minnesota to keep four coaches on defense.Sawvel targeted for promotion Minnesota defensive backs and special teams coach Jay Sawvel is being highly considered by Claeys to be the team’s new defensive coordinator.Claeys filled the role before being promoted to interim head coach in the wake of Jerry Kill’s retirement.The two will sit down after the current recruiting period ends in the middle of December to discuss it, Claeys said.“Jay has been with me a long time and he’s a hell of a coach,” Claeys said. “I want to make sure that I get a chance to talk to Jay and his family and make sure that is truly the way he wants to do it also.”O’Brien added to coaching staffDan O’Brien has been hired as co-special teams coordinator, assistant defensive backs coach and assistant to the head coach, Claeys announced Monday.O’Brien has been at the University of Minnesota since 2008, serving as the director of football operations until 2014 when he was promoted to senior associate athletic director.“Dan will be my sounding board,” Claeys said. “I’m excited, all our coaches are, about having Dan and his family join us.”O’Brien previously served as a head coach and athletics director at Concordia University in St. Paul from 1995-2002 and was the athletics director at Hamline University until 2007.
The nation’s annual report card for common foodborne infections shows that overall rates haven’t changed significantly over the past 5 years, but Vibrio cases—while a minor contributor to the total—have been rising steadily, federal officials announced yesterday.The report for 2013 shows that Salmonella cases were down 9% from the average for 2010-12, while Campylobacter infections were up 13% compared with the average for 2006-08. Vibrio infections—often linked to shellfish—in 2013 were 32% higher than in 2010-12 and 75% higher than in 2006-08.But the overall picture stayed about the same. “Since 2006-08, the overall incidence has not changed significantly. More needs to be done,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in its report, published in today’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).The numbers come from the CDC’s FoodNet foodborne disease surveillance system, which covers 10 states with about 15% of the US population, roughly 48 million people.A total of 19,056 infections, with 4,200 hospitalizations and 80 deaths, were reported to FoodNet in 2013, the CDC said. That compares with 19,531 cases, 4,563 hospitalizations, and 68 deaths reported a year ago in the data for 2012.Besides those mentioned, the report covers the bacterial pathogens Listeria, shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (both O157 and non-O157), and Yersinia, and the parasites Cryptosporidium and Cyclospora.As in the past, Salmonella was the leading cause of foodborne infections, accounting for 48% of cases, followed by Campylobacter at 35%, said Robert Tauxe, MD, MPH, deputy director of the CDC’s Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases, at a press teleconference yesterday. Vibrio infections were at 1.2%, the report shows.Case rates for all of the pathogens remain above the “Healthy People 2020” targets set by the government. For example, Salmonella incidence in 2013 was 15.19 cases per 100,000 population, versus a target of 11.4. For Campylobacter the 2013 rate was 13.82 per 100,000, with a target of 8.5.Tauxe said the 9% decline in salmonellosis from the 2010-12 average brings the incidence down to where it was in 2006-08, though it is still well above the 2020 target. He said one probable factor in the 2013 drop is that a major national outbreak of S Enteritidis linked to eggs pushed the incidence up in 2010.Since then, the Food and Drug Administration’s safety rules for shell eggs have taken effect across the industry, noted Stephen Ostroff, MD, the FDA’s chief scientist. The rules require preventive measures in poultry houses and refrigeration of eggs during transportation.USDA Salmonella standardsDavid Goldman, MD, MPH, of the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), commented at the press conference that although Salmonella detections in FSIS testing of chicken carcasses have dropped 75% since 2006, “this has not translated into lower infection rates.”The USDA tightened its performance standard for Salmonella on whole chickens in 2011, and in 2013, 3.9% of samples tested positive, the CDC report says. Because raw chicken is usually sold as parts, the USDA did a survey of chicken parts in 2012 and found that 24% of samples were contaminated with Salmonella.Consequently, the USDA is now developing a performance standard for chicken parts, according to Goldman. “We hope to publish a proposal in the next few months,” he said.The CDC said that although the 2013 incidence of Campylobacter cases was 13% higher than in the 2006-08 period, it was about the same as the average for 2010-12.The USDA is considering developing a performance standard for Campylobacter in poultry, but no decision has been made on whether to go forward, said Goldman.He explained that the agency also looked at Campylobacter levels when it did the survey of Salmonella in chicken parts. “We’re still in the process of developing all these standards and determining if the data will support a performance standard for Campylobacter,” he said.In response to questions, he added that if a pathogen is present at only very low levels, there may be regulatory or policy options other than a performance standard for controlling it.Vibrio cases climbingThe CDC report shows that FoodNet picked up 242 Vibrio cases in 2013, for a rate of 0.51 per 100,000 population, with 55 hospitalizations and 2 deaths.Tauxe said that rate represents a 168% increase since 1996-98, when FoodNet surveillance began. “For Vibrio it’s been a pretty consistent increase” relative to all of the comparison periods the CDC is using (1996-98, 2006-08, and 2010-12), he said.The report notes that Vibrio infections are more common in the summer, when the organisms are more abundant in seawater. About 50% of Vibrio infections are foodborne, typically from oysters, with most of the rest linked to contact with seawater.While overall Vibrio cases have been rising, infections with V vulnificus, the most virulent species, have been steady, the CDC said. Meanwhile, another Vibrio species has been on the move: in 2012 and 2013, many infections with a V haemolyticus strain previously seen only in the Pacific Northwest were identified on the Atlantic Coast, in illnesses linked to oysters and other shellfish.Concern about changes in testingIn other observations, Tauxe voiced concern that the growing use of “culture-independent diagnostic tests” (CIDTs) may impair the ability to track foodborne infections and outbreaks in coming years.He said clinical labs are now using a rapid test for streptococcal infections, adding, “Now other new culture-independent tests are starting to be used by clinical labs for identifying other infections. These don’t isolate a living germ that can be studied. For many years foodborne disease tracking has relied on those living cultures.”The CDC report says that in 2013 there were 1,487 reports of positive CIDTs that were not confirmed by a culture, either because the specimen was not cultured or a culture did not yield the pathogen. It adds that labs probably send only a low percentage of CIDT-positive specimens for confirmatory testing, because there are no national guidelines for confirmation of CIDT results.Tauxe said FoodNet needs cultures of pathogens to confirm that “we’re counting a real infection” and also to do DNA fingerprinting, which makes it possible to identify outbreaks.CDC. Incidence and trends of infection with pathogens transmitted commonly through food—Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network, 10 US sites, 2006-2013. MMWR 2014 Apr 18; 63(15):328-32 [Full text]See also: Apr 17 CDC press releaseRelated Apr 18, 2013, CIDRAP News story
In a surprising announcement today, Saudi Arabian officials revealed that a “rigorous” examination of all their MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) data has led to an abrupt 19.6% increase in the country’s official case count and a 48.4% increase in the death toll.Yesterday the Saudi Ministry of Health (MOH) was reporting 575 MERS cases and 190 deaths. With today’s announcement, the case count jumped by 113, to 688, while the death toll rose by 92, to 282. Of the nonfatal cases, 353 patients have recovered and 53 are still being treated.Later in the day, the MOH reported another new MERS case and a death in a previously reported case, raising the totals to 689 cases and 283 deaths.The announcement came the day after the MOH disclosed the dismissal of Deputy Health Minister Ziad Memish, MD, who has been the nation’s leading investigator of and spokesman on MERS-CoV, and has also been the target of frequent criticism of the MOH’s response to it. Today’s news also came a few weeks after the appointment of a new health minister, Adel bin Mohammad Faqih.Case details lackingThe MOH said the review that led to the revised numbers was designed to “ensure a more complete and accurate understanding of the MERS-CoV outbreak” in the country. But the agency did not explain why the cases originally went unreported or exactly how the review uncovered them.Also, the MOH did not give any significant details on the added cases, such as locations, age ranges, gender balance, how many cases were sporadic, and how many involved healthcare workers or occurred in a healthcare setting,The statement includes a bar graph depicting approximate numbers of previously reported and newly reported cases for each week since January 2013. It shows that the first newly reported ones occurred in May of last year.The graph reveals that the proportion of unreported cases grew much larger this spring as case numbers soared. The number of additional cases was especially high in the third week of March and the last 2 weeks of April. The total case count for the third week of April is about 110, of which about 25 cases were not reported until now.In the announcement, Dr Tariq Madani, head of the Scientific Advisory Board in the MOH Command and Control Center, stated, “The Ministry is committed to fully understanding MERS-CoV and putting in place the policies needed to protect public health and safety. To do this the Ministry has reviewed historical cases of MERS-CoV to give a more comprehensive understanding of the facts.”While the review has resulted in higher total number of previously unreported cases, we still see a decline in the number of new cases reported over the past few weeks.”The MOH said its data review has already improved its policy development process and MERS response measures. The ministry said it has taken steps to ensure the use of best practices in data gathering, reporting, and transparency, with the aim of ensuring that “from now on, case information will be accurate, reliable, and timely.””Measures that have been taken to ensure the reliability of information and speed of reporting include the development of an electronic case reporting system, and improving reporting mechanisms on new cases to MoH Command & Control Center,” the statement said.The MOH also announced several steps to improve the capacity and efficiency of Saudi labs and testing facilities:Authorization of additional labs to perform standard testingStandardization of testing kits across all labs and implementation of quality assurance processesDevelopment and implementation of guidelines for the proper labeling and storage of samples in hospitals and labsDevelopment and implementation of protocols to guarantee the integrity of samples during transport and ensure accuracyImproving access to authorized MOH labs through implementation of a nationwide courier system for rapid transfer of specimens to regional labsChanges in the reporting of new cases were evident in today’s announcement of the single new case. The case information is presented in a tabular format that offers more details than past reports, including the patient’s nationality and whether he or she is a healthcare worker.The new patient is a 50-year-old man who is hospitalized in Medina and is not a healthcare worker. He is of Saudi nationality and has no preexisting conditions.Experts welcome the shiftExperts who commented on today’s announcement welcomed the Saudi move toward greater transparency and expressed hope that it continues and increases.Connie Savor Price, MD, chief of infectious diseases at Denver Health and Hospital, commented, “When the new [minister of health] came into office, I do believe one of his priorities was to re-examine the data to ensure experts were getting accurate data to inform interventions. More rigorous case findings identified the additional cases and deaths that you heard about today. My sense is that most of these cases are healthcare associated.”She denied any knowledge of the reasons for Memish’s dismissal, but said she found the timing of today’s announcement “interesting.””The MOH seems to want to be clear that they are here to collaborate and value transparency. That is a step in the right direction,” she added.Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, who has done consulting work on MERS-CoV in the Middle East, said it’s unclear why the additional cases were not reported earlier and what implications they have for understanding the MERS outbreak in Saudi Arabia. He is director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, publisher of CIDRAP News.”We welcome this new level of transparency and hope it will continue with more detailed information about these cases and what will be done so that this doesn’t happen in the future,” he said. “It also reinforces the point that we need much more information about the risk factors for transmission, which can be answered only by the completion of a comprehensive case control study.””The bottom line message that we’ve got to understand is that this is not a Kingdom of Saudi Arabia problem or even a Middle East problem; this is an international problem,” he said. “All it would take is one super-shedder of this virus to land in Tokyo or New York or London or Toronto, and this situation would turn on a dime.”See also: Jun 3 MOH statement on new case reporting standards and numbersJun 3 MOH statement on new case
ROCHESTER, NY – Retired U.S. Army General Wesley Clark has been elected to Torvec’s board of directors, effective Jan. 28. Torvec is a publicly owned development stage automotive technology company based in Rochester, N.Y.AdvertisementClick Here to Read MoreAdvertisement In making the announcement about Clark’s election to the board, Torvec CEO Richard Kaplan commented, “We are very proud and honored that Gen. Clark will be a member of our board. His incredible talents, experience and wisdom will be a tremendous asset to Torvec. I look forward to his advice and counsel.” Gen, Clark stated, “I am very excited about Torvec’s technologies. With their breakthrough products such as the IsoTorque differential and Rota-Torque hydraulic pump, they are in the sweet spot of large growing markets with special emphasis on green innovations. I look forward to helping the company grow, and at the same time doing some good things for the world.” During 34 years of service in the U.S. Army, Clark rose to the rank of four-star general as NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander, Europe. After his retirement in 2000, he became an investment banker, author, commentator and businessman. In September 2003, he entered politics as a Democratic candidate for president of the United States. His campaign won the state of Oklahoma before he returned to the private sector in February 2004. In his final military command, Clark commanded Operation Allied Force, NATO’s first major combat action, which saved 1.5 million Albanians from ethnic cleansing in Kosovo. He was also responsible for the peacekeeping operation in Bosnia.Advertisement Clark’s awards and honors include the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the State Department Distinguished Service Award, the U.S. Department of Defense Distinguished Service Medal (five awards), the U.S. Army Distinguished Service Medal (two awards), the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart and Honorary Knighthoods from the British and Dutch governments. He is the author of two books and is seen as a guest commentator on many national news programs. Clark graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1966 as valedictorian of his class and completed two degrees at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. He is also a graduate of the Ranger and Airborne schools. Today, Clark is an investment banker and is active in the finance, technology and energy fields. He currently serves in leadership roles with a number of for-profit and non-profit organizations, including chairman of New York investment bank Rodman and Renshaw; chairman of Wesley K. Clark and Associates, a strategic consulting firm; trustee of the International Crisis Group and chairman of City Year Little Rock, as well as a member of other private and public boards.
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