Does Trump’s new “extreme vetting” center duplicate other efforts?

By Nick Miroff | The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — “Extreme vetting” was a frequent campaign promise of President Donald Trump’s, and within days of taking office he ordered broad restrictions on travelers from many Muslim-majority countries, measures he deemed necessary until such a system was in place.

Trump directed Homeland Security officials to edify his ideas, and in February the White House announced the creation of a National Vetting Center, or NVC, that would bring unprecedented rigor to screening foreigners.

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Since then, however, the administration has not explained how the center will vet travelers more extremely than the array of other federal agencies already performing the task. It is also unclear whether the White House plans to lift the controversial travel restrictions once the NVC is up and running.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments challenging those restrictions, alleging that the ban is a form of religious discrimination and that the president exceeded his authority in ordering it.

Trump has given security, intelligence and other agencies until August to submit proposals for how they will work with the new center and share information with it.

“The Federal Government’s current vetting efforts are ad hoc, which impedes our ability to keep up with today’s threats,” the White House said in a Feb. 6 memo. “The NVC will better coordinate these activities in a central location, enabling officials to further leverage critical intelligence and law enforcement information to identify terrorists, criminals, and other nefarious actors trying to enter and remain within our country.”

Former DHS officials and security analysts agree that this sounds like a good idea, but they note that the United States already has a unified, state-of-the-art nerve …read more

Source:: The Mercury News

Tuesday 24 April 2018

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Google’s owner brushes off fears over privacy debate

Google owner Alphabet has unveiled a bumper quarterly profit that “breezed past Wall Street’s forecasts”, reports The Times. Shrugging off concerns about the effects of the internet privacy debate, the tech giant earned $9.4bn in the first three months of the year, nearly three quarters more than in the same period in 2017. Once again, its booming digital advertising business was the fuel.

Capita seeks to raise £1bn as annual losses soar

Capita plans to raise at least £1bn after its latest results showed that it made a £513m loss last year. The outsourcer has announced a £701m rights issue, at 70p per share, a discount of 56.2% from Friday’s closing price. The company will also raise at least £300m this year by selling parts of the business that are not considered core, reports the Daily Telegraph.

Minister minded to probe Trinity Mirror’s takeover

The culture secretary has announced he is considering an investigation into the Mirror’s takeover of Express and Star. Matt Hancock said he was “minded” to issue a public interest intervention notice for an inquiry into concerns about editorial independence. In February, Trinity Mirror’s shareholders voted to approve the deal to buy the …read more

Source:: The Week – All news

Cinema’s potential £1 million windfall boost “is yet more evidence of the community’s desire for the facility”

A potential £1 million pledge from just 4% of people in Montrose has been described as yet more evidence of the community’s desire for a cinema.

The Montrose Playhouse Project embarked on its most successful event to date in the form of a DIY SOS style strip-out at the old pool in November.

Volunteers had helped save the project £250,000 and the team are now working behind the scenes to raise the capital funding required for the rest of the renovations which amounts to around £2 million.

Chairman David Paton said: “Once we have a commitment to capital funding from one or more source, we intend to raise the balance through a reward based crowdfunding scheme.

“In anticipation of this, we have carried out a two week survey of just over 500 respondents asking them what, if any, of our proposed rewards they’d be interested in with an indication of prices.

“These ranged from a ticket to the opening night at £30 or a brick in the Playhouse Wall of Fame for £50 all the way up to a main sponsor at £50,000.

“In the two week period we had ‘raised’ a theoretical £1 million from around 4% of the town’s population which is yet more evidence of the community’s desire for the facility.”

Local lads Graeme Thomson, Gary Jamieson and James Kennedy are giving the project a further boost by signing up for a 25-mile kiltwalk in Glasgow on April 29.

On June 30 Montrose Driving Instructors Association are holding their annual mock driving test fundraiser with all proceeds going to the ambitious project.

Mr Paton said: “The MDIA do this every year for a local charity as a way of giving back to the community whilst promoting good driving awareness.

“The entry fee is £25 for which you get a 30 minute mock driving test with a qualified …read more

Source:: Evening Express – All articles

Why is it taking so long for the Edmonton Oilers to review coaching staff?

The Calgary Flames have fired their old coach and hired a new one. The New York Rangers fired Alain Vigneault. The Chicago Blackhawks made it clear long ago they were sticking with Joel Quenneville. Ken Hitchcock retired in Dallas. In Anaheim, Randy Carlyle is apparently staying put but assistant Trent Yawney was let go.

Things are starting to move when it comes to NHL coaches, so why is it taking so long for the Edmonton Oilers to take action?

This particular impatient Oilers fan would certainly like to know what is up.

There’s been a lot of speculation, including this on Monday from Bob Stauffer of the Oilers organization in regards to Yawney: “Trent Yawney has an excellent track record of developing young defenceman. My guess is that he will be a coach that multiple organizations look at. Yawney is a former teammate of Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan in Saskatoon, spent 3 years as AC with McLellan in SJ. Yawney has been an NHL and AHL HC and oversaw a Ducks PK unit that has been top 5 last 3 seasons. He checks off a lot off boxes here.”

From Stauffer’s tweet, it sounds like the “about to be hired by the Oilers” box will soon be checked off as well. That’s how my Cult of Hockey colleague Kurt Leavins sees it, as he said on Twitter: “I imagine the Oilers are much, much closer today to being ready to unveil their new coaching staff. (Former Flames coach) Glen Gulutzan would replace Woodcroft. Yawney would replace Johnson. Maybe 1 or 2 more pieces to come. And keep in mind Todd McLellan and Trent Yawney were teammates for 2+ seasons on the Saskatoon Blades in the ’80s. Known one another well for a long time.”

My take
The Oilers are taking so long, it’s …read more

Source:: Edmonton Journal