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first_imgDES MOINES, Iowa – An annual report that ranks each state for indicators of child well-being says Iowa has fallen behind in some areas.The 2020 KIDS COUNT report says Iowa has slipped from number three in the overall rankings to tenth in the nation. The indicators that make up the rankings include economic stability, education and health.The report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation says access to early childhood education and eighth-grade math proficiency are particular trouble spots for the Hawkeye State. Anne Discher, executive director of the Child and Family Policy Center in Des Moines, says the pre-K barriers are especially concerning.“You know, a lot more four-year-olds go to pre-school than three-year-olds,” says Discher. “But the fact is, we’re leaving out lots of kids, our early-education system is missing lots of kids; not accessible to a lot of kids to get that quality, early-childhood experience.”The report says 53% of three- and four-year-olds in Iowa are not enrolled in school. Discher says it’s an area where more state funding would help with access issues.And while Iowa usually fares better than the national average on several key indicators, Discher says the new data was compiled before the COVID-19 crisis, so the gaps might run even deeper. And no matter the timing, she says there are still too many kids in Iowa who are left behind.“Fourteen percent of kids were living in poverty,” says Discher. “That’s pretty substantially better than the national average, but it still translates to 97,000 children. If that were a city, it would be the fourth-largest city in the state.”Past reports from the Casey Foundation have also shown that poverty rates in Iowa are much higher for Black and Latino children.last_img read more


first_imgIn this May 2, 1963, file photo, St. Louis Cardinals’ Stan Musial sits in the clubhouse after he tied Babe Ruth’s extra-base-hit record, against the Chicago Cubs in St. Louis. Fans of Cardinals great Stan Musial will get a chance to own a piece of his personal collection _ items ranging from game-worn jerseys to championship rings to harmonicas _ through an online auction that’s now under way. Musial died in January at age 92. (AP Photo/File)  by Jim SalterAssociated Press WriterST. LOUIS (AP) — Who wouldn’t love a baseball team from the quaint Heartland, the team that produced gentlemanly Stan Musial and fans so friendly they sometimes cheer opposing players?Apparently, a growing legion.As the World Series moves to St. Louis on Saturday, vast regions of the Midwest and South still love their Cardinals. But nationally, there are signs that Cardinals fatigue has set in.That’s not completely unexpected given the team’s recent omnipresence in the postseason. All the Haterade was probably inevitable with the emergence of snarky websites and social media — though Twitter co-founder and St. Louis native Jack Dorsey surely didn’t envision all the 140-words-or-less nastiness directed at his beloved team.It began in the first round of the playoffs with some national commentators openly rooting for the Pirates to beat St. Louis. It was more about Pittsburgh’s storybook emergence after a two-decade playoff drought than hate of the Cardinals, but it didn’t go unnoticed in Cardinals country.Then there are the online barbs. In a recent column on the website Deadspin, Drew Magary called St. Louis a “dump” and took particular exception to the team’s fervent fan base.“Wanna know who you really are, Cardinals fans?” Magary wrote. “You are this. You are poorly disguised Yankees fans in ugly Christmas sweaters carrying a Jell-O mold to your neighbor’s door.”Another website, Buzzfeed, ran a story headlined, “23 Reasons It’s Perfectly OK To Despise The St. Louis Cardinals.” Among the reasons: No. 20 — Yadier Molina’s neck tattoos.When their run of success began in 2000, the Cardinals were the happy story — red-clad fans with high school football-like enthusiasm for their overachieving Midwestern mid-market team.Since then, the Cardinals have become as common in October as falling leaves and pumpkins on the porch. Ten of the last 14 postseasons have included them. They’ve played in the National League championship series eight times in the span. This World Series appearance is their fourth since 2004.Some are literally tired of seeing red.“I think to a certain extent that part of the life story of being a sports fan is the struggle, the sense of grinding it out with your team. When your team is in the playoffs 10 of the last 14 years, that can come in conflict with people’s ideas of what a real fan is,” said Annemarie Farrell of Ithaca College, who has done research on the behavior of sports fans.Fans in St. Louis write off the criticism as jealousy.“Once you start winning the tide turns,” Cardinals season ticket holder Mark Shevitz, 58, said as he shopped in the team store at the ballpark. “Now everybody kind of wants to knock you off the pedestal. People are tired of seeing you win.”True enough. Any list of sports teams that draw the ire of fans of other teams is top-heavy with frequent winners — the Yankees, NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, the NFL’s New England Patriots, even the Cardinals’ World Series opponents, the Red Sox.The disdain for the Cardinals has extended to some opponents. National League Central foes have for years felt the Cardinals sometimes came across as self-appointed proprietors of baseball’s unwritten rules on etiquette.After the NLCS, some Los Angeles Dodgers feel the same way. When Dodgers slugger Adrian Gonzalez was demonstrative after a key hit in Game 3, Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright called the behavior “Mickey Mouse.” Gonzalez responded later by feigning Mickey Mouse ears after another big hit.St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Bernie Miklasz found the derision ironic.“Cardinals and their fans were depicted as a stern colony of baseball Amish because they prefer solid fundamental play, gentlemanly superstars such as Stan Musial and success with reasonable dignity,” Miklasz wrote in a column after the Cardinals eliminated the Dodgers in Game 6.All is not negative for the Cardinals, who remain beloved at home, with a fan base that extends over several states. The team draws 3 million-plus fans to Busch Stadium every year and supporters often turn out in the thousands for road games.Meier Raivich of Fanatics, the largest online retailer of licensed team gear, said that during the regular season, Cardinals merchandise was the third-most popular among major league teams, topped only by the Yankees at No. 1 and the Red Sox.Farrell said the Cardinals and their fans shouldn’t make too much of the criticism.“The Cardinals are such an iconic baseball brand, and they’re also a team that’s hard to hate,” she said. “If you’re going to find a reason to root against them, maybe it’s because they’re always good.”last_img read more


first_imgBRADENTON, Fla. — Exactly 24 hours later, the 49ers’ inability to come through in the clutch at Baltimore still stung, and coach Kyle Shanahan acknowledged as much.“We had our opportunities there at the end,” Shanahan said on a media conference call Monday. “Big miss not being able to convert that fourth-and-1.”When Jimmy Garoppolo’s fourth-down pass got batted away by Ravens 6-foot-5 lineman Chris Wormley, the 49ers never got the ball again, and the Ravens responded with a field goal as …last_img read more


first_imgScientists want to copy animal skills.  The new science of biomimetics is on a roll (11/30/2010), looking to living things for design inspiration.  Here are a few of the latest organisms giving inventors and engineers goose bumps.Bird gloss:  Ravens have what scientists at the University of Akron in Ohio want: glossy materials.  Nevermore shall ravens be despised members of the bird order; according to PhysOrg, their feathers have thin layers that cause light interference, producing a sheen that glistens even though the surface is rough.  That could be useful to inventors needing a glossy look for materials that cannot be polished.Honeybee aerobatics:  By imitating the optical flow of honeybee eyes, researchers at the University of Queensland are inventing plane navigation systems that can perform complex maneuvers, PhysOrg reported.Fly navigation:  With help from the Air Force, Caltech scientists, similarly, are studying fly vision to learn better flight attitude control.  It would be enough to improve flight stabilization and navigation from our tiny winged neighbors; “However, with a tiny brain they are able to perform a variety of tasks such as finding food and mates despite changing light levels, wind gusts, wing damage, and so on.”Bird-o-soar:  Soaring is better than flapping, reported PhysOrg.  Researchers at Hebrew University of Jerusalem are equipping birds with transmitters to learn more about their flight efficiency.  They are finding that small birds benefit from gliding as much as large birds.Bacterial biofuel:  A subset of biomimetics is employing organisms directly.  Science Daily said that scientists at Concordia University are trying to engineer Lactobacillus lactis, the organism that helps make cheese from milk, into a workhorse “to transform plant material into biofuels or other chemicals.”Bacterial sensors:  Scientists at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution are recruiting bacteria to test water quality.  According to Science Daily, their “revolutionary Swimming Behavioral Spectrophotometer (SBS) … employs one-celled protozoa to detect toxins in water sources.”  The contraption, which monitors the swimming ability of the germs as indicators of water quality, could some day monitor all the drinking water in the world, with instantaneous feedback and continuous response.  The Department of Defense is very interested. Butterfly medic:  “Butterfly-Inspired Patch May Alert Soldiers to Brain Injury” reads a headline on Live Science, describing how “A color-changing patch modeled after the iridescent wings of butterflies could give soldiers a heads-up on the severity of injuries sustained on the battlefield,” thanks to work at the University of Pennsylvania.Silk drop control:  Remember how spider webs collect dew by causing water droplets to bead up due to the nature of the proteins in the silk? (see 02/04/2010).  Nature reported that Chinese scientists are trying to imitate this trick with synthetic silks.Earthworm biohazard sensors:  Why build electronic sensors to detect hazmat (hazardous materials), when earthworms can be hired to do it?  Science Daily reported that researchers in Venezuela and Argentina are studying the “viability of using earthworms to process hazardous material containing high concentrations of heavy metal for the bioremediation of old industrial sites, landfill and other potentially hazardous areas.”  This offers an “alternative to complex and costly industrial cleanup methods, the team suggests.”Neuron computers:  Live Science reported how researchers at Boston University are bringing the world closer to silicon-free computers that use memristors, which “behave like neurons in many ways,” toward new digital brains.Bacterial computers:  Imagine being able to program bacteria to act as logic circuits for organic computers.  That’s what researchers at the University of California at San Francisco are counting on, according to Science Daily.Ant computers:  How do ants solve puzzles so well?  They can always find the shortest route to a target, even when a barrier is put in the way.  Scientists at the University of Sydney are curious, so they have built mazes to learn how the “humble ant is capable of solving difficult mathematical problems.”  The headline reads, “Next generation of algorithms inspired by problem-solving ants.”  Supercomputer programmers who humble themselves like the ant might learn how to adapt to changing conditions and barriers, both by exploratory behavior and signals left in the path, such as the pheromone molecules that help ants remember previous trials without backtracking.  One team member commented, “Even simple mass-recruiting ants have much more complex and labile problem solving skills than we ever thought.”Viral batteries:  “Viruses have a bad rep–and rightly so,” began an article on PhysOrg, but researchers at the University of Maryland are “turning the tables, harnessing and exploiting the ‘self-renewing’ and ‘self-assembling’properties of viruses for a higher purpose: to build a new generation of small, powerful and highly efficient batteries and fuel cells.”Starfish medical breakthrough:  Watch a video at BBC News to learn how asthma, hay fever and arthritis may get new effective treatments, thanks to starfish.  Imitating the slimy goo on starfish surfaces could help reduce inflammation on blood vessels, researchers at King’s College London said.  “The starfish have effectively done a lot of the hard work for us.”    This is just one example of promises from sea creatures.  The article said that scientists envision an “underwater pharmacy” of useful medical products coming from organisms as diverse as sea cucumbers and seaweed.  “Some of the most widespread, widely used medicines come from nature,” said David Hughes, an ecologist from the Scottish Association for Marine Science.  “Penicillin is a mould that grows on bread, aspirin comes from willow trees, so it’s not too surprising turning to nature to find useful drugs.  But we’ve only very recently begun to look to the sea for a useful source of medicines.”  The huge diversity of life in the oceans that cover nearly 3/4 of the earth’s surface promises a vast research area for years to come.Bones and cones:  From the spiral cones of molluscs to the bones and teeth of vertebrates, biominerals form a variety of lightweight yet tough materials.  Science Daily discussed how researchers at the Ohio Supercomputer Center are studying “nature’s ability to form complex structures, such as bones, teeth and mollusk shells, from peptides.”  This could lead to breakthroughs in “bone replacement, sensing systems, efficient energy generation and treatment of diseases.”Very few of these articles mentioned evolution.  Of those that did, evolution was a side dish, not the entree.  In the raven feather article (bullet 1 above), for instance, the suggestion was made that the peculiar feather structure “may represent an evolutionarily intermediate step between matte and iridescent colors,” and in the starfish story (bullet 14), Clive Page at King’s College London injected purpose and design into a Darwinian answer by saying, “The starfish is effectively providing us with something that is giving is different leads: it has had billions of years in evolution to come up with molecules that do specific things.”Go biomimetics!  The biomimicry revolution is making science fun again.  Reporters and scientists who are tired of Darwin, this is a way for you to get out of the kingdom of the DODOs (Darwin only, Darwin only) without jeopardizing your career.  Just study the living subject and apply it to real world problems.  Storytelling about “billions of years in evolution” is superfluous and will not be missed.    Parents and teachers: consider inspiring your precocious students’ next science project with biomimetics.  It could be a first-prize winner and open up a young person’s mind to an exciting, productive career that could improve human life and health without harming the environment.(Visited 13 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more


first_imgThirty Dalit families in Odisha’s Khordha district, who have been allegedly facing social boycott by members of the upper castes in their village for over six months, have threatened not to exercise their franchise in the Lok Sabha election.Upper castes have allegedly ostracised the families by barring them from shops, not giving them job opportunities and stopping other essential services for them in Chhanagiri village, about 60km from Bhubaneswar.Members of the upper castes had allegedly ganged up to impose a social boycott on these families after one of them lodged a police complaint for caste discrimination in October last year.Denied glass of water“In October, my six-year-old granddaughter was denied a glass of water in a hotel run by an upper caste family. Nobody in the village paid heed to us when we raised the issue of discrimination. Subsequently, we approached the police,” said 60-year-old Shantanu Nayak.“Members of the upper castes felt offended as we sought police help. They decided not to cooperate with us on any issue. Since then, we have been deprived of basic services in the village. Despite our appeal in different fora, the social boycott continues,” said Mr. Nayak.Earlier this week, the Odisha Human Rights Commission (OHRC) intervened in the matter and directed the Khordha district administration to visit the affected families and take action in accordance with the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act and provide protection to the Dalit families. The commission also issued a stern warning to government officials to ensure that the issue is sorted out in a time-bound manner.“The social boycott is a blot on our society in this era. I have worked in the Indian Army and served the nation. After retirement, I am now subjected to this discriminatory treatment. It appears that we have ceased to be citizens of the country. It is better that we stay away from voting,” said Subhash Nayak, a resident of Chhanagiri village.“This is a case in which the fundamental right to life, liberty, equality and dignity has been violated,” said Biswapriya Kanungo, a human rights lawyer who took up the issue with the OHRC.last_img read more


first_imgChelsea boss Lampard pleased with 2-goal Batshuayi: We need himby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea boss Frank Lampard was pleased with striker Michy Batshuayi for his two goals in their Carabao Cup win over Grimsby.The Blues ran out 7-1 winners to set up a round of 16 tie with Manchester United.Lampard said, “He has worked hard and trained well. He came on at Wolves and made an impact, came on against Liverpool and nearly made an impact and that is great for me when you give a message and someone shows they can train daily and improve there. “Michy has talent, he can hold the ball up and use both feet and can score goals, and he is important for us. He got his chance and scored goals tonight which is good because we need options up front.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more


first_imgTagsTransfersOpinionAbout the authorChris BeattieShare the loveHave your say Christian Pulisic flop? Why the US whiz on outer at Chelseaby Chris Beattie23 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCOMMENT: He can’t say he was never told. Christian Pulisic and his far from hoped for start at Chelsea. The advice now being relayed through the press is spot on. Well, at least some of it is…First, let’s put the fantasists to one side. There’s no anti-American bias at Cobham. And there’s no belief amongst the coaching staff, including manager Frank Lampard, that Pulisic is the wrong fit for his system. Such claims, as we’ve seen in recent days, is simply the stuff of mischief-making.Indeed, the opposite is true. Lampard and his backroom team know they have a potential world-beater on their hands. They know the ability Pulisic possesses. But they need the American to come out of his shell more. To stretch himself amongst his teammates and on the training the pitch. “He needs to fight for it”, as one Cobham source told this column a week ago.As mentioned, no-one doubts Pulisic’s ability inside Chelsea. Like us on the outside, they’ve already seen it in glimpses in preseason and the limited action Lampard has handed him thus far. And we say handed, as for the moment the consensus amongst those pushing the witches hats around is that Pulisic isn’t doing enough in training to warrant selection. And it’s not so much what he does in drills and bounce games – “he keeps it all nice and tidy” – but in his overall drive to get himself ahead of teammates currently occupying what should be his place. As Jurgen Klinsmann, the former USA coach, put it this week, Pulisic needs to get “nasty”.If Pulisic doesn’t have Klinsmann’s number, then you hope his father, Mark, can reach out to the German great and have him call his son. Klinsmann’s interview this week discussing Pulisic’s problems nailed it. He hit many of the points our source made last week. Not just the need for the 21 year-old to show a willingness to compete for his place, but also how he is in unchartered water. As we were told, this is the first time in Pulisic’s career where set expectations are waiting to be met. The staff at Chelsea understand this. They’ve seen it before. But it’s up to the player to cut loose from what he’s known.As Klinsmann says, “He’s a very special player, he’s tremendously talented, but this is a big step, because Borussia Dortmund was also basically the club where he got formed into a professional player.”He came out of the youth system there, he moved himself up, he had all the support within the club and now going to London…”We’d also add Pulisic’s international career to Klinsmann’s assessment. The German capped Pulisic at 17, with no great expectation. At that stage in his career, everything he achieved at senior level was a bonus. It was all about learning his craft, gaining experience. He was given the time and space to adjust to international football. To meet it’s demands. Just as he was with Dortmund.But now he’s in a very different environment. A reputation needs to be built. New relationships established. And a realisation must dawn that he’s not entitled to anything. No-one is going to give him a free pass. Or better yet, a free place in the manager’s XI.Klinsmann again: “He will go through a phase now where more and more he needs to bring his elbows out to fight himself through the system, at Chelsea it goes from game to game, week to week. “You’re basically in training, and you have to tell the coach: ‘I’m in, I’m going to start this game, you have to become nasty to make yourself a starter.”From what we know, Klinsmann and Lampard aren’t close. But the German was definitely helping Chelsea’s manager this week. Klinsmann essentially parrotting what Lampard had stated after leaving Pulisic on the bench for the home defeat to Valencia.”He’s shown some really good moments,” reasoned Lampard, “but what he has to do, as all the players have to, not just the wingers, is reach levels in training daily that make you sit up and go ‘here’s my team selection and that’s actually affected it, I have seen good stuff’. That’s the same for every player in the squad.”Training ground form and application is what makes Lampard tick. It’s what transformed a chubby, but talented, midfielder at West Ham, into a modern day great at Chelsea. Going through the motions. Doing just enough to get by. It just won’t survive within a Lampard-managed squad.Pulisic has been given some great advice this week. And he can make it at Chelsea – so long as he acts upon what Klinsmann says. last_img read more


first_imgJaylon Smith helped off the field by trainers.Jaylon Smith Injury Jaylon Smith InjuryJaylon Smith InjuryFew players had a worse NFL Combine than Notre Dame’s Jaylon Smith, through no fault of his own. Smith was failed by multiple teams on his physical due to potential nerve damage stemming from the significant knee injury he suffered against Ohio State, which included a torn ACL and LCL.Smith, once viewed as a potential top 10 draft pick, will probably fall out of the first round altogether, but he’s doing whatever he can to prove that he is healing up. In an interview with Yahoo Sports, he revealed that he is currently leg pressing over 600 pounds, and squatting over 400.Can Smith feel a tangible difference physically in the past five weeks?“Oh yeah, absolutely,” Smith said. “A few weeks have made a huge difference, even the past two weeks. I can feel it.“Rehab is going great. I am leg-pressing over 600 pounds right now. I am squatting over 400 pounds. I am getting that strength back. It’s just a matter of time.”Asked whether it has been determined if he suffered nerve in the injury, Smith was a bit vague, but he remained upbeat.“We’ll see when I go back there [to the medical recheck],” Smith said. “We’ll see what the doctors say then. I feel like I’ve regained some of it. I’m happy where I am at right now.”When healthy, Smith is an incredibly impressive prospect. Hopefully he finds a team that will take a chance on him.[Yahoo Sports]More: Vote In Our “Most Annoying People In Sports Media” Championship >>>last_img read more


first_imgzoom Shanghai-based Wison Offshore & Marine has received Approval in Principle (AIP) from Bureau Veritas for its newly-developed large-scale Floating LNG Storage and Regasification Terminal.Featuring scalable storage capacity up to equivalent size of a Q-Max, this is the first large-scale FSRU barge design that has been granted AIP by a classification society, according to Wison.The company added that the full-size floating LNG terminal solution offers an economical alternative to the conventional LNG regasification vessels (LNG RV) especially for markets with long-term demand.Furthermore, the barge design lowers initial capital investments, up to 20 percent compared with LNG RV of equivalent size, as well as O&M costs, while enabling uninterrupted service throughout project lifecycle.“Wison large-scale FSRU is a fit-for-purpose facility designed with practical operation considerations. It features scalable storage capacity from 150,000 m³ to 265,000 m³ and a base case design of 750 mmscfd regasification capacity expandable to fit project needs,” David W. Chen, Senior Solution Manager at Wison Offshore & Marine, said.“Designed for near-shore/at shore application, the FSRU can also be deployed offshore with a single point mooring system,” Chen added.last_img read more


first_imgMONTREAL — Alimentation Couche-Tard and CrossAmerica Partners LP have signed a deal to swap convenience and gas station assets in the U.S.Under the agreement, Couche-Tard has agreed to sell 192 U.S convenience and fuel retail stores to CrossAmerica, with an aggregate value of about US$184.5 million.Meanwhile, CrossAmerica has agreed to sell Couche-Tard assets valued at US$184.5 million, including the real estate property for 56 U.S. company-operated convenience and fuel retail stores leased and operated by Couche-Tard and 17 stores owned and operated by CrossAmerica in the U.S. Upper Midwest.Couche-Tard says the deal is expected to take place through a series of transactions over a period of up to 24 months.The closing of each transaction is subject to customary closing conditions.Couche-Tard’s wholly owned subsidiary CrossAmerica GP is the general partner for CrossAmerica Partners LP.“We believe this transaction will be beneficial to both parties,” Couche-Tard chief executive Brian Hannasch said in a statement.“The transfer of Couche-Tard’s retail stores to CrossAmerica will help optimize the long-term value of these assets, further strengthens Couche-Tard’s core retail business and is a win-win for both sets of stakeholders.” The Canadian Press Companies in this story: (TSX:ATD.B)last_img read more