Ex-Warriors coach Luke Walton denies sex assault accuser’s claims in new docs, TMZ reports

first_imgFormer Warriors assistant Luke Walton’s legal team has filed new court documents saying nothing sexual occurred between Walton and Kelli Tennant, who has accused him of sexually assaulting her, TMZ reports.According to the report, the documents allege Tennant, a former TV reporter covering the Lakers, initiated their 2014 meeting during which she says he assaulted her in his hotel room.The incident in question happened while Walton was an assistant coach on the Warriors bench, before he was …last_img

A healthy dose of ‘Mad Maxx’ may have been these Raiders’ secret

first_imgOAKLAND — Jon Gruden wasn’t concerned about Maxx Crosby’s small sack total heading into Sunday’s game. That number isolated, Gruden attests, is far too perfunctory to properly assess the rookie’s instant impact on these Raiders.Crosby had a handful of tackles — six solo, five for loss — and two forced fumbles. His total of 2.5 sacks were collected over three games (one against Chicago, one against Green Bay and a half against the Chargers). That wasn’t why they call him Mad Maxx.Perhaps …last_img

Early Earth Was Flat and Ocean-Covered, Secular Scientists Claim

first_img(Visited 917 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 No mountains, covered with water — does that sound vaguely familiar?For a world that, to secular scientists, was born in a fury of collisions and volcanoes, the announcement by New Scientist must sound very strange: “Early Earth was covered in a global ocean and had no mountains.” It was a flat earth: not like a pancake, but like a sphere with very little relief, covered by water. Astrobiology Magazine puts its headline this way: “Earth was barren, flat and almost entirely under water 4.4 billion years ago.” According to Australian scientists who pored over zircons from the world’s oldest rocks,“Our research indicates there were no mountains and continental collisions during Earth’s first 700 million years or more of existence – it was a much more quiet and dull place.“Our findings also showed that there are strong similarities with zircon from the types of rocks that predominated for the following 1.5 billion years, suggesting that it took the Earth a long time to evolve into the planet that we know today.”It’s interesting that the book of Genesis begins with a watery sphere, but not billions of years ago. And it took only a day for God’s activity to raise the first dry land and mountains above the waters.I’ve been really, really disturbed by the problem of making terrestrial planets.To believe the secular counterpart, it would seem the scientists need to account for how plate tectonics began hundreds of millions of years later. And the two articles say nothing about where all this water came from. That’s been a long-standing challenge for secular theories.Lucky FlaresTo address another conundrum for secularists, the “faint young sun paradox,” New Scientist in another article suggests that “Earth may have been born in a huge flare-up of the young sun.” Well, anything may be true; where’s the evidence? Alexander Hubbard saw a star with a flare-up and speculated about what would happen if our sun did that. The problem with ad-hoc scenarios is that they invoke lucky accidents instead of natural laws. Another problem is that one ad-hoc element usually leads to more.If you thought planet-making was easy, look what reporter Ken Croswell says:It’s not easy to make Earth. Most of the explanations for how our planet formed have troubling problems. But if a new idea is right, we can thank a hyperactive young sun for Earth’s existence, plus solve a long-standing mystery about Mars.According to standard lore, the planet-building process began when dust particles orbiting the newborn sun stuck together, forming rocks that built still larger objects.But this story is in trouble. “I’ve been really, really disturbed by the problem of making terrestrial planets,” says Alexander Hubbard at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.Another scientist quoted in the article concurs with the difficulties facing secular planet theories:“It’s an interesting idea,” says Andrew Youdin at the University of Arizona, noting the difficulty of explaining terrestrial planet formation. “There’s clearly a major problem here, and so all ideas need to be looked at.”All ideas, that is, except the ideas in Genesis 1.Then God said, “Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. Genesis 1:9Folks, isn’t an eyewitness account superior to a bunch of ad hoc, made-up, speculative scenarios loaded with problems? Do Bible skeptics really think they are on firmer ground here? They keep changing their theories, not converging on Truth, but engaging in a drunken sailor’s walk that changes every year or decade. Who needs storytellers when you have a Creator? We know the storytellers cannot possibly be right, because they think their own minds evolved from lower animals. They’re only saying these dumb stories to pass on their genes. To make us take them seriously, they would first have to deny Darwinism and believe in God. If they took the next logical step and became Bible believers, they would be building on the rock instead of on the quicksand of monkey convictions.last_img read more

Trailblazer: Luther Williamson

first_imgMD: Johannesburg City ParksWhy is Luther a Trailblazer?From a derelict piece of land once used for illegal dumping to a luscious green park complete with fountains and a big-screen TV – a lot can be done in 24 hours when you have someone like Luther Williamson behind the idea.Luther’s concept of the extreme park makeover, in which an entire park would be put together in 24 hours, was inspired by the extreme home makeover show in the USA.Luther believed this would be an innovative way to address the huge backlog in developing facilities in communities and attract corporate support and global attention towards city parks, and thus open up opportunities for funding and sponsorship.In 2007 his dream came true when Johannesburg City Parks created the world’s first ever 24-hour extreme park, Weltevreden Park, followed by the much bigger Dieplsloot Park in Soweto.The environmental impact of the project is phenomenal. Townships in South Africa, more especially Soweto, are generally scarce of trees. The parks have restored beauty to the land and a sense of pride to the people.The parks have also helped in curbing crime in some townships, as people are not as idle and can take part in activities that bring the whole community together.Luther’s idea proved that, unlike Rome, a beautiful community park can be built in a day – and yet last a lifetime.In his own words …“[Through] City Parks . we must give people hope and by giving people hope, they start to see opportunities and when the opportunities arise, they start becoming inspired and once they’re inspired, they become creative and then they start to protect their own.”Fast factsDiepsloot Park in Soweto may have taken 24 hours to create, but it was more than three months in the planning.One of the driving forces in building a park in 24 hours was a strong desire to place South Africa in the Guinness Book of Records.Dorothy Nyembe Park in Dobsonville, Soweto was named the Best Park in the world at the Liveable Communities Awards in London.How can you help?Corporates can give funding for the extreme parks, while anyone can visit the parks with family and friends and enjoy the outdoors experience. You could also help reduce the carbon footprint in South Africa by planting a tree.Story published on SAinfo on 5 August 2008.Source: Brand South Africalast_img read more

Writing Helper Brings Editing Collaboration to WordPress

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Publishing Services#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img dan rowinski Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting As professional bloggers will tell you, the collaboration and archival process for editing posts is one of the most onerous parts of the job. Hey, writing is the easy part! WordPress announced today that it is unveiling a set of new features to its platform called Writing Helper that should make the editorial process easier.Writing Helper is a box that sits under the “Add a Post” screen and adds new features to the WordPress platform. The most interesting is the “Request Feedback” tool that allows users to share posts before they are published by emailing a collaborator a private link to the draft. Their comments will be seen in the post editor for easy reference. The other feature to the Writing Helper is the “Copy A Post” that allows a writer to use a previous post as a base for a new post, importing title, tags, content and categories to help save time. For instance, yesterday we wrote about Sony’s Playstation Network hack bringing down the platform. Later in the day Sony updated the status saying that the personal data on 70 million accounts was compromised. Same story, two posts that shows a good example of how the Writing Helper could have been beneficial.WordPress is an intuitive content management system, and a lot of writers swear by it as the only platform they care to use. These features, while interesting, should probably have been integrated a while ago. Copy A Post is a minor feature and useful for developing breaking stories that necessitate continuous updates with new posts. Request Feedback will make WordPress pre-publish sharing simpler, and having inline notes within the editor should be a basic feature to any CMS.WordPress has been experimenting with other features to help writers, such as “distraction free blogging,” a full-screen template that removes all other apps from the editor so you can focus on writing. As an ecosystem, WordPress also has thousands of plug-ins that can give a writer just about any functionality they may desire.WordPress skills are one of the most sought after by employers, according to Elance, a freelance job auctioning service. So, put down your nunchuks and bow and arrow and get back to the keyboard.last_img read more

Why Productivity Hacks Don’t Work

first_imgImagine that you have a task to complete. You need to roll a 100-pound boulder up a steep hill. It’s really difficult, but somehow you manage to do it.Now, you have to roll the boulder up the same hill again. You’re going to be smarter this time. You look around and find a path that is less steep. Progress! You roll the boulder up the hill again, and you get to the top faster. Because you were smart, you were more productive, right?New day, same boulder, same hill. You’re going to be really smart this time. You strap the boulder onto some apparatus and you use a motor to pull the boulder to the top of the hill. All of this takes you half as much time as pushing the boulder, and you aren’t nearly as tired. In fact, you could move the boulder up the hill ten times if you had to. Now you have hacked your way to being super productive, right? You’ve leveraged technology to do your work for you.But this isn’t productivity. This is doing something efficiently. This is why your productivity hacks don’t work. How fast and effective you can do something doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. That’s missing the starting point.If you want to be productive, the first question you need to ask yourself is “What is my work?” Unless you find deep meaning in rolling a rock up a hill for no reason, then you shouldn’t be rolling a rock up a hill. Some of the tasks you are doing are just that: tasks.The second question you need to ask yourself is “What tasks will produce the results I want and need?” There is a lot of work that shows up in your world that looks very much like rolling a rock up a hill. It takes time and energy, but it doesn’t produce any real, measurable results. It doesn’t move you any closer to your goals.The real “productivity hack” is sitting down alone to decide what your real work is, what work you can invest yourself in, and how you plan to make a contribution. The best productivity hack is blocking the time to do the work that produces the results you want from your life, a big part of that life being your work, and work being one of the ways you make a contribution. Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

Book review: ‘A Corner of a Foreign field: The Indian History of a British Sport’

first_imgA Corner of a Foreign field: The Indian History of a British Sport By Ramachandra Guha Picador When Aamir Khan turned the story of a fictional cricket match in the 19th century into both a commercial success and a bold cultural statement, it appeared that Ashis Nandy’s contention that cricket,A Corner of a Foreign field: The Indian History of a British Sport By Ramachandra Guha Picador When Aamir Khan turned the story of a fictional cricket match in the 19th century into both a commercial success and a bold cultural statement, it appeared that Ashis Nandy’s contention that cricket was an Indian game invented by the English had received the final endorsement. After all, now, Bollywood had even decided to create a mythology around it.Indian sport’s most famous and historically documented anti-colonial statement was the 1911 victory of the barefoot Mohun Bagan football team over the East Yorkshire Regiment. But in the early 21st century football didn’t give rise to a Lagaan. Cricket did.Ramachandra Guha, writer and historian, throws this pitiful piece of sociological analysis into the dustbin. Well before the Yorkshire Regiment and Lagaan, in 1906 a team of Hindus beat a team of Europeans in a match in Bombay that was written about with great glee in the press, including in the faraway Madras Mail.Guha recounts this and more with relish in his new book, a social history of Indian cricket. It will drive large holes in popular perceptions about the growth and development of cricket in the Indian imagination. Urban India, Guha believes, was drawn to cricket and deeply linked with it long before Independence. A Corner of a Foreign Field is, he says, the story of “forgotten connections and forgotten cricketers”.Ramachandra Guha: Historian on weekdays, cricket writer over the weekendsThe 44-year-old Bangalore-based writer says, “Indian cricket has always reflected the issues of the society around it-whether it was caste, race and religion in the early years of the 20th century or nationalism and commerce today.” That’s not the story we’ve been told.The accepted social history of Indian cricket involves colonial inheritance, princely patronage, quirky tales about Porbander and Vizzy and Lord Harris slowly evolving into the inspired leadership of the Nawab of Pataudi, the great wins in 1971, followed by the era of Sunil Gavaskar, the 1983 World Cup, Kapil Dev, satellite television, Sachin Tendulkar and the high-pitched mayhem we now know and love.advertisementThat remained the tale because, says Guha, “historians are not interested in sports and sports writers are not interested in history and politics”. Er … guilty as charged, on both sides.Guha too considers himself a historian on weekdays and a cricket writer over the weekend, choosing to keep the two occupations divorced from each other. “I always thought cricket and history would be separate. Maybe at the back of my mind I didn’t want to contaminate a sport I loved with politics.”Foreign Field then is a masterly crossover both ways. The differences between Indian history and Indian cricket history were, he discovered, not quite irreconcilable. They came together in the form of a man who is one of Guha’s two personal favourites: the Dalit cricketer Palwankar Baloo, researched and reintroduced to the wider world by Guha in the 1990s.This book happened, he says, by “accident” as he continued his research into Baloo’s life. Baloo, in fact, is almost a metaphor for the entire book, for the centrality of cricket in Indian cultural life: a cricketer of great skill, Baloo was a giant to his own community, a figure so influential he mediated between Gandhi and Ambedkar in 1932. In 1937, he was the Congress candidate against Ambedkar in an election which he lost by a nar row margin. “It started with Baloo but by the time I’d finished … I didn’t think I’d have so much.”Indians have, he says, “always been crazy about cricket”-their adoration for the marvellous Colonel C.K. Nayudu is proof enough. In Nayudu, they had a “nationalist icon-easily the equal of Tendulkar” in an age before mass media and live television.Guha’s writing on cricketers of old has always been like a good sepia-toned photograph, containing within it both nostalgia and clarity. On the contemporary batch he is understated and generous, qualities hard to find in the quote-and-dagger, push-and-shove of the modern cricket press.He certainly has more sympathy for Sourav Ganguly & Co. “In the 1950s, when India began to win Test matches, Jawaharlal Nehru never entered the picture. Today our cricketers are expected to substitute for all our failures-they must win matches because our economy is bad or whatever. It’s an unfair burden.”Losing is a “national humiliation/ shame/ disgrace”, India-Pakistan cricket is a crown of thorns and we are forever being told that the sport has a special status because it evokes “national sentiment”; Guha pokes the cricket chauvinists in the eye in Foreign Field, recounting the time when RSS leader M.S. Golwalkar demanded that the game be banned from post-Independence India. Today, Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani smiles and feeds Wasim Akram a few ladoos.advertisementForeign Field will become-and it’s not even a professional risk to say this-a modern classic of Indian cricket writing. There are bound to be comparisons to C.L.R. James’ Beyond the Boundary, something that makes the genteel Guha wince.This is not-the Arundhati Roy episode notwithstanding-a man of the screaming headline or the 10-second soundbite. “Boundary is inimitable. All I wanted to do was write a social history of Indian cricket and make it interesting.” He is currently working on a history of Independent India. Don’t be too surprised if cricketers begin to pop up in it.There are, he believes, entire libraries waiting to be written on the subject, treasures waiting to be found for the scholar or the cricket writer who ventures beyond the conventional boundaries of their individual subject- regional histories, cricket folklore or even the spread of the game beyond the major metros. Foreign Field should certainly spark off a few other searches. Cultural anthropologist, social historian, sociologist, cricket writer … whoever turns to Indian cricket will not end up emptyhanded.Plus, of course, there could even be another Bollywood blockbuster waiting to be made. Based, this time, on a true story.EXCERPTCricket chauvinismAfter their victories in the West Indies and England in 1971, a further twelve years were to pass before India won anything of substance on the cricket field. But this was the big prize, the World Cup itself.The tournament was played in England, and the fancied teams included the hosts, Pakistan, and the West Indies. India started at 50 to 1 outsiders, and even the captain, the superb all-round cricketer Kapil Dev, thought only that his men were ‘capable of a surprise or two’.But they played above themselves to reach the semi-finals. In this round they beat England. Now they would play the West Indies, who had won the trophy in 1975 and 1979, and were generally regarded as unbeatable in the one-day game.For the final at Lord’s the rival supporters ‘had turned the ground into a carnival with the cymbals and bongos of the West Indian supporters in disharmonious rhythm with the dholaks and temple bells of the Indian supporters’.The latter fell silent when Kapil Dev’s side were shot out for the low score of 183. But a few West Indian wickets fell early, panic set in the lower-middle order, and finally they fell forty-three runs short.As it happened, Indira Gandhi was now prime minister once more. Mrs Gandhi sent an early telegram to the cricketers, which said, interalia, that ‘My slogan is India can do it. Thank you for living up to it’. (This slogan, with the cricketers’ photographs, was then displayed on state-owned petrol stations all over India.)The patriotic spirit had caught the players. When they landed at Bombay airport to a crowd shouting ‘Kapil Dev zindabad’, the captain immediately corrected them by saying ‘Bharat zindabad’.advertisementAfter a reception in Bombay the players went home for a few days, and reassembled in Delhi to meet the prime minister. For her reception to the players, held on the lawns of Hyderabad House, Mrs Gandhi was dressed in cricket colours: a dotted white sari with a matching white blouse.The Prime Minister spoke to each player, held the Cup herself, posed for photographs and made a short speech where she told the players: ‘Shabash, keep the flag flying.’What she said next was more notable: to quote a press report, ‘the Prime Minister however expressed surprise that the English press was underplaying the achievement of the Indian team. She said the entire nation had been thrilled at the victory’ The Indian cricket victories of 1971 had taken place in between two personal political victories for Mrs Gandhi; in the elections of January, and on the battlefield in December.Indeed, after that winter’s war against Pakistan-which India won, comprehensively-the cricketers were commandeered for national service. They were asked to play a round of matches to raise money for the Bangladesh Fund.At these games, played all over India, lesser politicians sought also to reflect some of the glory onto themselves. The cricketers, wrote one critic in disgust, ‘became part of a multipurpose circus that went round and round the country- a bandwagon to climb for leaders from all shades of public life’.The nationalism of Mrs Gandhi was a curious mixture of paranoia and triumphalism. Even at the time of her greatest victories she spoke darkly of the ‘enemies of the nation’. In 1971 these were the princes, the capitalists, and the western world.The United States had openly supported Pakistan, and even sent the Seventh Fleet into the Indian Ocean. In this context cricket and cricketers would be used to help Indira, and India, keep those ever-threatening forces at bay.When the Indian team won the World Cup in 1983 Mrs Gandhi was not as firmly in control as in 1971. Her party was riven by inner tensions, her nation riven by regional loyalties-or disloyalties-in particular the rebellions then active in Assam and the Punjab.And the external enemies were also present: note the brooding reference in her speech to the apparent hostility to Indian cricketers of the British press. To suggest that Indira Gandhi saw herself as the Kapil Dev of politics may not be entirely far-fetched.Should the cricket craze in India be compared with the Brazilian love for soccer, then? In that country soccer has become the vehicle for the unfulfilled aspirations of everyday life.The game of football provides a ‘breathing space between a horrific immediate past and an anxiously uncertain future’. Brazil still grapples with an unequal society and an imperfect democracy, but at least they win the World Cup, world sport’s greatest prize, once in every two or three attempts.In India, however, the expression of sporting nationalism is accentuated both by the continuing poverty of its peoples and the very widely dispersed nature of its on-field triumphs.Between 1986 and 1999 India did not lose a single Test series at home, playing in a climate and general environment suitable to its players and on pitches doctored for its spin bowlers. In that same period it only won one Test match overseas, in Sri Lanka.It has won one World Cup out of seven played thus far. It is thirty years since it won a Test series in West Indies, and it has still never won one in Australia. But hope lingers, kept alive by memories of other victories: in West Indies and England in 1971, the World Cup in 1983, the World Championship of Cricket in 1985.Meanwhile, the integration of the world through television and the liberalisation of India’s own economy have made comparisons with other countries more obvious and less palatable.India will never be a Tiger to match the other Asian Tigers. India ranks at about 150 in the World Development Report, just below Namibia and just above Haiti. It is the cricketers, and they alone, who are asked to redeem these failures.Especially in the last decade, cricket nationalism has become more intense and ferocious. One sign is the increasing hostility to cricketers from other countries. In the past, the Indian cricket fan was inclusive in his sympathies; he would worship the West Indian Frankie Worrell and the Englishman Tony Greig alongside Vinoo Mankad and Gundappa Viswanath.This characteristic seemed to confirm the remark of the anthropologist Verrier Elwin that where Christians believe more in God, Hindus believe in more Gods. But it appears that Hinduism has become semiticised.Chauvinism has triumphed over generosity. Our side must win, at any cost. Stone throwing, arson and other acts of vandalism have become increasingly common, especially when India is on the verge of defeat.Such hyper-nationalism places a massive burden on our cricketers. When they lose, the response tends to the vicious. Newspapers call into question the fitness, probity and patriotism of the defeated cricketers.Fans burn their effigies on the streets, and sometimes throw stones at their homes. Win or lose, it is hard work playing cricket for India nowadays. I suppose the ever-increasing pay packet compensates.Edited excerpts from A Corner of a Foreign Field. Ramachandra Guha 2002last_img read more