Washington: Congressional Democrats appear to be moving from “no way” to “maybe” on President Donald Trump’s rewrite of a trade pact with Canada and Mexico. House Democrats have met four times with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, most recently on Friday, and both sides say they are making progress toward a deal that would clear the way for Congress to approve Trump’s U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA. Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, who heads a House subcommittee on trade, declared a couple of months ago that there was “no way” Democrats and the administration could bridge their differences. Lately, he’s reconsidered. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US “In the course of the last two months, we have seen significant progress,” Blumenauer said. Negotiators so far have not offered details on where they’re making progress. Democrats want the agreement to include stronger protections for workers and the environment. They also are seeking to jettison a provision they see as a giveaway to big pharmaceutical companies. Talks could still fall apart. Meetings between congressional staffers and officials from Lighthizer’s office during Congress’ August recess could prove critical. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls House Democrats working on USMCA will submit text next week to the administration “memorializing the concrete and detailed proposals that we have made.” They called on the administration to do the same. “It is time for the administration to present its proposals and to show its commitment to passing the new NAFTA and delivering on its own promises,” the Democratic lawmakers said. Supporters of USMCA are pushing for a deal before the 2020 election campaign heats up, which could make it harder for Democrats and Republicans to compromise. A senior administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said there was growing optimism within the administration about USMCA’s prospects amid signs that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was willing to work toward a compromise. “The smart money in Washington is that USMCA will pass this fall following a bargain,” said Daniel Ujczo, a lawyer with Dickinson Wright in Columbus, Ohio, who specializes in North American trade. “However, it is just as likely that we will be in a ‘bump and blame’ scenario where the president can blame Speaker Pelosi and Speaker Pelosi can blame the president.” By ratifying the agreement, Congress could lift uncertainty over the future of U.S. commerce with its No. 2 (Canada) and No. 3 (Mexico) trading partners last year and give the U.S. economy a modest boost. U.S. farmers are especially eager to make sure their exports to Canada and Mexico continue uninterrupted. Rep. Cheri Bustos of Illinois, who oversees efforts to get Democrats elected to the House, said Pelosi “understands the sense of urgency” about USMCA among some lawmakers who represent rural districts. “The hope is that we can get to a yes,” Bustos said. “But first and foremost, it has to look out for working men and women in our country.” The USMCA is meant to replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, which eliminated most tariffs and other trade barriers between the U.S., Mexico and Canada. Critics including Trump, labor unions and many Democratic lawmakers called NAFTA a job killer for America because it encouraged factories to move south of the border, take advantage of low-wage Mexican workers and ship products back to the U.S. duty free. Lighthizer last year negotiated a do-over with Canada and Mexico. But it requires congressional approval. He sought to reach a deal that would win over Democrats. It includes provisions designed to nudge manufacturing back to the United States. For example, it requires that 40 per cent to 45 per cent of cars eventually be made in countries that pay autoworkers at least 16 an hour that is, in the United States and Canada and not in Mexico. But Democrats say it still doesn’t go far enough. Democrats are also lined up against a provision of USMCA that gives pharmaceutical companies 10 years’ protection from cheaper competition in a category of ultra-expensive drugs called biologics, which are made from living cells. Shielded from competition, critics warn, the drug companies could charge exorbitant prices for biologics.
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Hearst Magazines announced that Kristine Welker has been named vice president, publisher and chief revenue officer of the company’s new pilot magazine collaboration with Dr. Mehmet Oz.Todd Haskell has been hired to fill Welker’s former position as senior vice president and chief revenue officer of Hearst Magazines Digital Media. He had been vice president of advertising at The New York Times.Andrew Lack has been named chairman at Bloomberg Media Group. He had been CEO there.Bloomberg Media Group also announced that Justin Smith would take over Lack’s position as CEO. He had been president at Atlantic Media. Cosmopolitan has hired Shiona Turini as fashion market director. Previously Turini served as the fashion market and beauty director at CR Fashion Book.Kalmback Publishing Co. announced the promotion and new hiring of four staff members.• Mark Savage has been promoted to associate publisher with oversight of five Kalmbach titles: American Snowmobiler, Classic Toy Trains, FineScale Modeler, Scale Auto.• Mark Boncher has been promoted to editor of American Snowmobiler.• Naomi Fujimoto has been named the new editor of Bead Style magazine.• Sandy Zwick has joined Kalmbach as the manager of the newly formed Creative Services department. Prior to joining Kalmbach, Zwick was the Creative Services Manager for QBE North America in Sun Prairie.Daniel Goldblatt has been named managing editor at Variety.com. He had been producer/coordinating producer at TMZ.National Journal’s managing editor for politics, Josh Kraushaar, has been promoted to editor-in-chief of National Journal’s Hotline.Melissa Kramer has been named fashion director at ESSENCE. She had been creative director and producer at UPTOWN.Luxe Interiors + Design announced that Mimi Faucett will be joining the editorial team as market editor. Prior to joining Luxe, Faucett was the market assistant at Traditional Home.Meredith Corporation has announced several promotions within the National Media Group.• Christine Guilfoyle has been promoted to VP/group publisher. As part of her expanded position, Guilfoyle will add responsibility for Meredith’s newest title, Allrecipes magazine, which will be launching this fall.• Linda Fears has been named VP/editor-in-chief of Family Circle. The promotion follows her eight-year role as editor-in-chief of the brand. Fears will also continue as editorial director of Meredith’s Food Content Center of Excellence.• Cheryl Brown has been named editor-in-chief of Allrecipes magazine. Most recently, Brown served as editorial director of Recipe.com.• Britta Cleveland has been promoted to SVP, Research Solutions. Cleveland joined Meredith in 2004, and most recently served as VP, Research Solutions.Michelle Lee Ribeiro has been named editor and project director of custom content at Palm Beach Media Group. She will oversee content and production for the eight custom resort and club publications.PGOA Media has appointed Andrew Becks to the newly-created position of vice president of audience development. Previously Becks was director of audience development at Scripps Network.Sabine Feldmann has been appointed associate publisher at Glamour. She was previously publisher at More, Shape group publisher/chief brand officer and publisher at Teen Vogue.Hanley Wood announced the appointment of Paul Silva as editorial director, Pool Group. Silva joins Hanley Wood from The Beach Reporter and PALOS Verdes Peninsula News, where he held roles as reporter, managing editor and most recently served as executive editor.Erika Taylor, former editorial director, Pool Group at Hanley Wood, is going to become of editor in chief of Aquatics International.Gail Reitenbach has been promoted to editor of TradeFair Group’s POWER magazine after 11 years as managing editor.Owen Phillips is leaving his post as executive editor at The Hollywood Reporter to work on a start-up and consulting projects in entertainment and digital media with Jeff Stern’s Alegra Enterprises in Santa Monica, CA. Previously, Phillips helped launched The Wall Street Journal’s weekend magazine WSJ. as its deputy editor.
Dan Cohen AUTHOR Installations on the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands remain “mission capable” despite absorbing a battering Thursday from Super Typhoon Yutu’s sustained winds of 180 mph. “There have been reports of major damage to structures and property, but all U.S. military personnel are currently accounted for,” Lt. Cmdr. Karl Lettow, a Joint Region Marianas spokesman, told Stars and Stripes. Crews began clearing debris and continue to assess conditions, but leaders expect Friday to be a normal workday, Lettow said. The cyclone left widespread destruction on the islands of Saipan and Tinian. … The Navy is proposing to spend $5.2 million to connect six homes located near an auxiliary landing field used by Naval Air Station Oceana to the municipal water system, after the homeowners’ wells consistently revealed elevated levels of PFAS contaminants over the past two years. The Navy has been providing bottled water to workers at Naval Auxiliary Landing Field Fentress in Chesapeake and nearby homes with contaminated wells since 2016, reports the Virginian-Pilot. The Navy has agreed to test private drinking water wells near the auxiliary field twice a year. … The Navy on Wednesday released its business operations plan for fiscal years 2019-2021, an effort aimed at achieving greater efficiencies that will allow it to reallocate resources from business operations to readiness and rebuilding naval forces. “As we look forward to the future, we must continue this momentum by leveraging every resource, expert, leading practice, and efficiency we can find — from all sources, private and public — to think anew about our business operating model,” Navy Secretary Richard Spencer said, according to a press release.Navy photo by Lt. Cmdr. Jackie Pau
Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Rishi KapoorVarinder ChawlaThough they have immense love and respect for each other, Rishi Kapoor and Ranbir Kapoor are not your everyday father-son pair. While Ranbir maintains his distance from his dad, Rishi Kapoor to doesn’t get involved in Ranbir’s private affairs. It’s Ranbir’s mother, Neetu Kapoor, who always acts as a bridge of communication between the two.The fact that Risi and Ranbir don’t always share an amicable relationship has time and again been confessed by the two. Rishi Kapoor’s strict behaviour during Ranbir’s childhood days and his constant fights with Neetu Kapoor have been the two prime reasons behind such a distant relationship between the two.In an interview with Mumbai Mirror, Rishi Kapoor had expressed his sadness when Ranbir Kapoor had decided to move out their home and live with Katrina Kaif in a plush pad the duo bought together. “My father gave me space when I moved out after marriage and I give Ranbir his space too when he decided to move out and share a home with his girlfriend. In this house, he had one room: how could that be enough for a 33-year-old boy? He’s a great son, he listens to me but I don’t interfere in his career because my career is mine and he is his. I know I’ve screwed up my relationship with Ranbir even though my wife kept telling me about what I was doing. It’s now too late to change it; both of us will not be able to adjust to the change,” Rishi had said in an interview with Mumbai Mirror.Further talking about his equation with Ranbir, Rishi had said, “I never made friends with Ranbir and though I regret it, I am also not one of those guys who would want to be on back-slapping terms with my son.”
Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Columns • Opinion • Simran Jeet Singh: Articles of Faith Aysha Khan ayshabkhan TagsDepartment of Homeland Security homepage featured Muslims social media visas,You may also like By: Aysha Khan ayshabkhan Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,About the authorView All Posts Aysha Khan Aysha Khan is a Boston-based journalist reporting on American Muslims and millennial faith for RNS. Her newsletter, Creeping Sharia, curates news coverage of Muslim communities in the U.S. Previously, she was the social media editor at RNS.,Load Comments,App for the blind is the latest in Jerusalem’s effort to make holy sites accessi … Share This! Catholicism By: Aysha Khan ayshabkhan By: Aysha Khan ayshabkhan We are not all the same, and in our difference we are divine August 30, 2019 As Amazon burns, Vatican prepares for summit on region’s faith and sustainabilit … August 30, 2019 Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,(RNS) — Starting this month, most visa applicants hoping to travel or immigrate to the U.S. are required to provide five years’ worth of social media identities and other account information in their applications.The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s newly expanded social media monitoring policies will directly impact an estimated 15 million prospective visa applicants, but civil rights and legal advocates say the policy will infringe most on the rights of Muslim communities, both in the U.S. and abroad.“The concern with a policy like this is that it’s targeting a certain population,” said Faiza Patel, director of the liberty and national security program at New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice, which produced a report last month on the effects of the policy.The social media requirement was originally proposed under the Trump administration’s controversial “extreme vetting” immigration screening policy. Previously, the State Department had said that social media accounts were only required for travelers who had been “determined to warrant additional scrutiny in connection with terrorism or other national security-related visa ineligibilities.”Expanding the national security precautions to immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applicants further stifles free discussion and dissent, particularly among Muslim communities, according to Sahar Aziz, director of Rutgers University Law School’s Center for Security, Race and Rights.“The government is disproportionately targeting Muslims, both abroad and in the United States, and is looking for validation of stereotypes that they are terrorists or prone to becoming terrorists,” said Aziz.Opponents of the measure pointed out that social media is far too broad a tool to be effective in weeding out legitimate threats. No algorithm, experts said, can possibly be nuanced enough to understand slang, cultural norms and innocent exploration of political ideology.“It’s nearly impossible for machines to be able to interpret social media posts, especially by young people,” Aziz said. “Not only will you have innocent people, disproportionately Muslim, accused of being a security threat because the word ‘bomb’ is misinterpreted as being a literal bomb versus meaning ‘cool,’ but you’re also wasting the government’s resources. They’re just chasing red herrings.”Instead, the Brennan Center report found that surveillance of social media is likely to lead Muslims to curb their conversations online.“There’s an overall impact on freedom of religion and freedom of association because people will self-censor what they say online,” said Patel.In a statement last year after the State Department announced the plan, Hina Shamsi, director of the American Civil Liberty Union’s National Security Project, agreed with that assessment.The social media review “will infringe on the rights of immigrants and U.S. citizens by chilling freedom of speech and association, particularly because people will now have to wonder if what they say online will be misconstrued or misunderstood by a government official,” Shamsi said.Hina Shamsi, left, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project, addresses the media on a plaza in front of New York City Police Department headquarters on June 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)She noted that the policy could be used to “unfairly target immigrants and travelers from Muslim-majority countries for discriminatory visa denials, without doing anything to protect national security.”U.S. Muslims will likely see a chilling effect on their online activity as well, Patel added, since social media posts of immigrants living in diaspora communities around the country may be picked up in DHS sweeps of relatives and other online contacts looking to come to the U.S.About 82% of Muslims living in the U.S. are American citizens, including 42% who were born in the country and 40% who were born abroad but who have naturalized, according to a 2017 Pew survey.Travelers and immigrants from many foreign countries, including some Muslim-majority ones, may be accustomed to censoring themselves online to protect themselves from an authoritarian government, but the new surveillance policy will likely raise U.S. Muslims’ awareness level about what Aziz called the government’s increased adoption of “authoritarian practices.”The 2017 Pew survey found that 18% of U.S. Muslims say they have been singled out by airport security. The federal government’s secret watchlist system has compounded this profiling, civil rights advocates say, leaving thousands of U.S. citizens on what they say is an overly broad list that burdens innocent travelers.“Going back to the post-9/11 time to now, there have been consistent complaints from Muslim travelers, including Americans, that when they come into the U.S., they’re often asked about their religious views and their political affiliations,” Patel said. “What mosque they go to, how often they pray, things of that nature.”That history, combined with the Trump administration’s policies banning travel from several Muslim-majority countries, shows a “clear link to the view that being an observant Muslim somehow suggests that you are a potential terrorist threat,” Patel said.Shaima Swileh, center, stands with her husband, Ali Hassan, second from left, after Swileh arrived at San Francisco International Airport on Dec. 19, 2018. Swileh is the Yemeni mother who won her fight for a waiver from the Trump administration’s travel ban that would allow her to go to California to see her dying 2-year-old son. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)The social media monitoring program, she said, seems to originate from “the same well of bigotry and bias.”The Brennan Center’s report noted that social media information collected by DHS can be shared with other government, law enforcement and security agencies and that the DHS databases sometimes retain such information for years.“It’s unclear the extent to which benign political commentary can end up ruining someone’s life,” Aziz said. News Women sex abuse survivors tell Southern Baptists: ‘Our family is sick’ Instagram apostasy stirs controversy over Christian ‘influencers’ August 30, 2019 Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Share This! Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email
Associated PressMelody Stout and Hannah Payan comfort each other during a vigil for victims of the El Paso shooting.Gov. Greg Abbott says Texas needs to do a better job of addressing its mental health care challenges after a deadly mass shooting at an El Paso Walmart.Speaking at a press conference after the shooting, Abbott said the state has enacted new legislation in the wake of last year’s shooting at Santa Fe High School outside of Houston. The governor held a series of roundtables at the Capitol in 2018 aimed at strengthening student safety.“During that time we did not, as far as I know, evaluate for and plan for an incident like this,” Abbott said. “That said, I can tell you that perhaps the most profound and agreed upon issue that came out of all of those hearings was the need for the state and for society to do a better job of dealing with challenging mental health based issues.”The governor said mental health “is a large contributor to any type of violence or shooting violence.”But researchers and advocates are pushing back against the idea that mass shootings are tied to mental illness. Rosie Phillips Davis, president of the American Psychological Association, said in a statement that blaming gun violence on mental illness is unfounded and can reinforce stigma about these conditions.“Research has shown that only a very small percentage of violent acts are committed by people who are diagnosed with, or in treatment for, mental illness,” she said. “The rates of mental illness are roughly the same around the world, yet other countries are not experiencing these traumatic events as often as we face them. One critical factor is access to, and the lethality of, the weapons that are being used in these crimes. Adding racism, intolerance and bigotry to the mix is a recipe for disaster.”Studies have shown most people living with serious mental illness are never violent.Jeff Temple, a professor with the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, says drawing such associations in the wake of mass shootings could make people hesitant to seek treatment for mental health conditions. Temple co-authored a study which found mental illness is not to blame for gun violence.“When something like El Paso happens, the first thing people jump to is, ‘Man, that guy must have been insane,’” Temple said. “‘He must have had a mental illness.’ Well, maybe not. Maybe it is something else going on. Maybe there’s some hostility. Maybe there’s some anger.”Temple’s study examined mental illness symptoms and personality traits and found people with a hostile demeanor were about three and a half times more likely to have threatened someone with a gun.“What we found was that overall, mental health symptoms were unrelated to both carrying a gun and threatening someone with a gun,” he said.In the end, Temple said the risk of violence comes down to access to firearms. The study found people with access were 18 times more likely to have threatened someone with a gun.“By and large, it seems to be, that person has access to guns,” Temple said, “and that is the common factor in all shootings.” Share
The members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Rho Xi Omega Chapter and the Cultured Pearls of Service will host a ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the opening of their international program A.S.C.E.N.D. The signature program is designed to support high school students in five areas: Achievement, Self-Awareness, Communication, Engagement, Networking and Development. The ceremony will be held on March 12 at 1:30 p.m. at the Baltimore City College Auditorium. RSVP to Autumn Anderson via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A grand welcome planned for Pakistan’s hockey team which won a silver medal in Champions Trophy was on Tuesday called off after a brazen Taliban attack on a military-run school that killed at least 160 people, mostly children.The Pakistan Hockey Federation said the ceremony has been cancelled following the attack on the Army Public School on Warsak Road in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Peshawar city. The ceremony was planned to welcome the players who took Pakistan to the final of the just-concluded tournament in India after a gap of 16 years. Also Read – Khel Ratna for Deepa and Bajrang, Arjuna for JadejaThe players were to be driven in a motorcade to Lahore after their return home via the Wagah Border. The federation said the ceremony would be held at a suitable time. The team lost to Germany in the final. In one of the most gruesome attacks on children anywhere in the world, at least six Taliban militants stormed the school and went classroom-to-classroom shooting indiscriminately.At least 160 people, most of them children, were killed in the attack, which was a reaction to Pakistan military’s campaign against the militants.