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Woman sells Bernie doll for over $20K, donates to charity

first_imgCORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) — Bernie Sanders went from becoming a hit meme to a nearly $20,000-crochet doll in less than a week. After the Vermont senator went viral on social media for his simple Inauguration Day fashion choices of quirky brown mittens and over-sized olive-green coat, Tobey King in Texas got to crocheting. She turned the sensational image that trended for days on social media into a 9-inch crochet doll. It sold for $20,300 on an eBay auction. The 46-year-old King said she will donate to Meals on Wheels America. Her donation was inspired by Sanders, whose campaign created sweatshirts with the image on them and donated the proceeds to Meals on Wheel in Vermont.last_img read more

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A bright future at QPR with help from Royal Panda

first_imgLast season was a major struggle for QPR both on and off the pitch. It looked at times that there might even be the possibility of the club being relegated to League One. This season is looking a lot rosier with an improved league position. Off the pitch, their finances are also looking a lot healthier thanks to their new sponsorship deal with Royal Panda.Since being relegated from the Premier League at the end of the 2014/15 season, QPR have rarely been promotion challengers. They have never finished in the top 10 and the past two seasons have seen them flirting with relegation. Their highest placing in the past three seasons has been 16th with the club finishing just two points above the relegation zone in the 2017/18 season. Last term was another frustrating one with a 19th place finish, though they were 11 points above the bottom three.The loss of all that Premier League revenue hit QPR hard. Their 2017 accounts showed that 64% of their turnover was being spent on wages. The club have been suffering heavy losses since their relegation as revenue drops and expenses remain high. That is the situation faced by many teams who fail to return to the top flight even with the parachute payments that are received.That’s not all to worry about though with over £40m in debts being paid to previous owners. Then came the £42m settlement with the English Football League after breaking Financial Fair Play rules. That led to a transfer ban for the January 2019 transfer window, making life even more difficult last season.Good news for the club has been the signing in 2017 of a three-year shirt sponsorship deal with online bookmaker and casino Royal Panda. It was great news too for the sponsors who had only recently received their sports book license to operate in the UK.The sponsorship deal has pumped vital revenue into the club at a time when it was needed. Royal Panda have a strong presence at the club, not just on the shirts worn by their players. Fans can take advantage of special offers from Royal Panda on the QPR website. The deal runs out at the end of the 2020/21 season, who knows by then QPR might be back in the Premier League making a renewal of the deal even more likely.The transfer ban ended this summer and QPR were extremely busy. New manager Mark Warburton revamped the squad with most of the 2018/19 squad leaving and new signings swiftly reaching double figures. Not that Warburton (who used to be a City trader) had a lot of money to rebuild the squad with. His new signings were a mix of loanees and young players who didn’t have a contact with a club.Warburton knew it was a risky move but felt it “was called for.” He knows that the club has owners who “have a vision and a plan” after going through a “pretty tumultuous time.” Making so many changes to a squad can go wrong (ask Everton and West Ham fans) and the bookies believed it would be another season of struggle for QPR.They surprised their critics though and earned 16 points from their first eight league games. QPR found themselves fourth in the Championship table and fans were again dreaming of a return to the Premier League.Form has dipped of late though with a run of only two points from their last five league games. One thing is guaranteed for QPR fans and that is they will see plenty of goals scored. 13 of their 17 league games have had over 2.5 goals scored in them They have netted 27 times in the Championship this season (up to November 23) and only West Bromwich Albion and Preston North End (first and third in the table) have scored more than them. On the flip side though, QPR have conceded 32 league goals and only bottom of the table Barnsley have conceded more.The recent poor run has seen QPR drop to 12th in the Championship. That’s only five points off the final promotion play-off position. After the problems of recent seasons, it’s good to report that QPR are ten points above the relegation zone.2020 could be a big year for the club. Mark Warburton has already been quoted as saying that “anyone in the top 10 come March can sniff the Premier League.” QPR are only behind 10th place on goal difference and few good wins would see them right in the promotion play-off picture.Improving their home league record is one key area where work is needed. Nine home league games this season have produced only three victories at Loftus Road with three draws and three losses. Away form is a case of blowing hot and cold with four win and four defeats.What will QPR do in the January 2020 transfer window?  Improving their defensive abilities must be a key aim. When you are averaging nearly two goals conceded in every match, it’s hard to win promotion. There won’t be a great deal of money to spend but a bit more wheeler-dealing in the loan market could just produce the required results.Where does the future lie for the club though? Club owners believe they have outgrown Loftus Road which only has a capacity of just over 18,000, though the average attendance this season is just under 14,000. Club CEO Lee Hoos has described the ground as “unsustainable for a professional football club in the long term. It’s lack of non-match-day use is another reason for wishing to find a new ground.One ambitious plan is to move into a 45,000 stadium. This would be a £425m redevelopment of the Linford Christie athletics stadium. The plan is for the ground to have a pitch that can be lifted turning itself into a roof. That way it wouldn’t be damaged when other events are held.It’s just one of four options that are open to them after the club held discussions with the local council. Others are a bit cheaper with a lower attendance and don’t have that special pitch/roof. Getting things right on the pitch, regardless of whether it can turn into a roof is the key aim in the near future as well as ensuring finances are kept steady and hopefully Royal Panda can help them with that. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebookby Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksRecommended for youAspireAbove.comRemember Pauley Perrette? Try Not To Smile When You See Her NowAspireAbove.comUndoLifestly.com25 Celebs You Didn’t Realize Are Gay – No. 8 Will Surprise WomenLifestly.comUndoUsed Cars | Search AdsUsed Cars in Tuen Mun Might Be Cheaper Than You ThinkUsed Cars | Search AdsUndoCelebsland.com9 Celebrity Before-And-After Plastic Surgery DisastersCelebsland.comUndoTettyBettyHere are Best Guitarists of All-timeTettyBettyUndoTravel Deals ShopPeople from Hong Kong cannot believe these flight pricesTravel Deals ShopUndoActive Feel11 Warning Body Signs You Shouldn’t IgnoreActive FeelUndoFood Eat SafeThis is What Happens to Your Body if You Eat Mangoes Every DayFood Eat SafeUndolast_img read more

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After early rally, Oakland’s bats fizzle in loss

first_imgPITTSBURGH, Pa. — For the first half-hour of Saturday’s game, it looked like a continuation of what transpired a day earlier for the A’s: Their bats were alive, and they couldn’t stop hitting.Then, all of a sudden, the spigot shut off. After scoring three runs on five hits in the first inning — all with two outs — the A’s managed four hits and one run the rest of the way.The offensive disappearance ultimately cost the A’s a chance to win back-to-back games for the first time since sweeping …last_img read more

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R13.5bn in tax relief on the cards

first_imgHe said that in order to improve the equity of the income tax system and broaden the tax base, the treatment of travel allowances would be reformed. This meant that the “deemed kilometre method” for deducting travel expenses would be repealed with effect from 1 March. “For pre-retirement lump sum withdrawals from retirement savings, the first R22 500 will be tax-free,” he said. “This concession will allow taxpayers significant tax relief in instances where circumstances beyond their control force them to make use of their retirement savings due to involuntary unemployment,” he said. Gordhan said the draft laws contain the tax proposals announced in the February 2009 Budget Speech by previous finance minister Trevor Manuel, and elaborated on in the 2009 Budget Review. Gordhan said that, given concerns about the plight of workers losing jobs in the economic crisis, the draft laws propose that withdrawal from retirement funds on retrenchment will qualify for the R300 000 exemption. Gordhan said other important amendments related to the taxation of lump sum withdrawals from retirement savings before retirement and on retrenchment, especially in the current economic environment. “A significant simplification of the tax treatment of lump-sum payments from retirement savings upon retirement, and pre-retirement lump sum withdrawals, will be implemented as from this year. “For individuals, the most important amendment was the adjustment to the personal income tax thresholds, which resulted in tax relief for individuals estimated at R13.5-billion,” he said. 2 September 2009 “This amendment will eliminate an unintended subsidy for commuting by car,” he said.center_img Retrenchment In addition, and to limit potential abuse, all lump-sum withdrawals and payments will be aggregated over the life of the taxpayer, meaning that once the tax-free portion has been used, it cannot be used again; subsequent lump sums will be taxed at higher marginal rates. Source: BuaNews For technical reasons, he said, the amendments are split into two Bills – a money Bill (under section 77 of the Constitution) and an ordinary (or section 75) Bill. The 2009 Taxation Law Amendment Bills will result in South Africans receiving tax relief of R13.5-billion, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said in Pretoria this week. The marginal tax rates on larger lump sums range from 18% to 36% for lump sums in excess of R900 000. In the case of a lump sum upon retirement, the first R300 000 is tax-free, and the marginal tax rates also range from 18% to 36% for lump sums above R900 000. Retirement savings Gordhan said that, in a bid to encourage people to preserve their retirement savings for the time they actually retire, the law provides for a more generous tax-free amount upon retirement.last_img read more

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SA-DRC pact paves way for Grand Inga

first_img20 May 2013 With South Africa confirmed as a key partner, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has announced October 2015 as the launch date for construction of the first phase of what could eventually be the largest hydroelectric plant in the world. The Grand Inga project on the Congo River is expected, once all the phases are complete, to generate a massive 40 000 MW of electricity, bringing renewable power to half of the African continent. The initialling of a historic energy cooperation treaty between the DRC and South Africa in Lubumbashi in March was a key milestone in the process of bringing the project, first conceived in the early 1970s, closer to fruition. At a meeting in Paris on the weekend, organised by the DRC government and with a high-level South African delegation in attendance, a range of stakeholders consulted on the implementation of the first phase of the project, Inga 3, which is expected to cost in the region of US$12-billion and produce almost 4 800 MW of electricity. Two existing dams, Inga 1 and 2, have been in operation since 1972 and 1982 respectively, together generating nearly 1 800 MW. In terms of the March treaty, South Africa “expects to purchase a significant share of the electricity production of the new dam, thus confirming itself as a key partner,” the DRC government said in a statement on Saturday. “As such, the Republic of South Africa will take 2 500 MW of the 4 800 MW of future power production of Inga 3, thereby becoming the principal purchaser.” Garrith Bezuidenhoudt, chief of staff in South Africa’s Department of Energy, said in the statement that the South African government had “affirmed our commitment to the project by already provisioning for this purchase in our budgetary plan”. Inga 3 is expected to fill the power gap in the DRC, with its fast-growing population and expanding industries, and to help meet burgeoning demand in South Africa. Subsequent phases, adding up to an eventual total capacity of 40 000 MW, will allow countries in southern Africa, north-east Africa and parts of west Africa to benefit from production at the site. “Grand Inga will thus provide more than half of the continent with renewable energy at a low price,” Bruno Kalala, the DRC’s minister of water resources and electricity, told Saturday’s meeting. However, Kalala said, issues around transport and connectivity had yet to be addressed. “Inga is a factor for integration, at both a regional and international level.” According to the DRC government, three consortia are competing to develop the project: Sinohydro and Three Gorges Corporation from China, the operator of China’s Three Gorges dam, currently the world’s largest; Actividades de Construccion y Servicios, Eurofinsa and AEE from Spain; and the Daewoo-Posco-SNC Lavalin consortium from Korea and Canada. The Africa Development Bank, which has been involved in the project since 2009, is financing the base studies and consultants, and has been joined by the World Bank, the French Development Agency, the European Investment Bank and the Development Bank of Southern Africa. “The question of financing is a major issue in the selection process,” said Hela Cheikhrouhou, director for energy environment and climate change at the African Development Bank. “It is the public-private partnership financing solutions which will be vital for the success of the project.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

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Baseball Ohio State splits doubleheader wins series against No 24 Michigan

Ohio State junior outfielder Dominic Canzone (33) celebrates after making it to third base during the game against Michigan on April 12. Ohio State won 10-5. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorOhio State (20-17, 4-5 Big Ten) takes the series, but split the Saturday doubleheader against No. 24 Michigan (24-11, 5-3 Big Ten) in front of a crowd of 4,841, the largest in over a decade. Game 1 Ohio State used explosive bats to cruise to a win and secure the series victory. The Buckeyes (20-16, 4-4 Big Ten) jumped on No. 24 Michigan (23-11, 4-3 Big Ten),finishing with a 10-4 victory in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader. They utilized the long ball to get after the usually dominant Michigan pitching staff. “We swung the bats really, really well,” head coach Greg Beals said. “We beat their pitching staff for two games.” The Buckeyes would finish the game with three home runs and 12 hits. The game was completely blown open after a three-run home run from redshirt senior center fielder Ridge Winand made the lead 8-0 in the third inning. It was Winand’s first home run of his career, capping off a six-run third inning for the Buckeyes. “As I was rounding the bases, all that hard work felt like it paid off, and it was against the Team Up North which is awesome,” Winand said. Junior right fielder Dominic Canzone continued his success against the Wolverines. The co-captain would make is imprint on the game with a solo shot, his ninth home run on the year, off the scoreboard in right-center field in the bottom of the third inning. Canzone would finish with three hits and two RBI. In his career, Canzone has recorded multiple hits in five of his six games against Michigan. “Big time players got to play in big time games, and Dom Canzone certainly proved that this weekend,” Beals said. Ohio State redshirt freshman pitcher Seth Lonsway was not his usual dominant self, finishing the day with four strikeouts, his lowest total since his start against Furman on March 11. Despite the uncharacteristic low number of strikeouts, the redshirt freshman was able to go 5.2 innings and allow only three runs in his fifth win of the season. “We went freshman Lonsway and freshman Pfennig for a victory, so it bodes well for the future and bodes well for these guys growing for the rest of the season,” Beals said. Junior pitcher Karl Kauffmann came into Saturday’s game with a 2.29 ERA, Michigan’s best, with an average start length of over six innings. Kauffmann would finish the game with the worst start of his career in terms of runs allowed, giving up a career-high eight runs in 5.1 innings of work. The Buckeyes were also able to balloon Kauffmann’s career home runs allowed from three to six. In the bottom of the second inning, Ohio State freshman shortstop Zach Dezenzo, who came into the day with five home runs, was able to crush a two-run home run to center field to open up the scoring. This was the first home run surrendered by Kauffmann this season. Following Canzone’s home run, a triple from senior left fielder Brady Cherry pushed home the fourth run of the game for Ohio State. Cherry would be knocked in on a single to right field from junior first baseman Conner Pohl. The Wolverines were able to cut into the deficit, after senior first baseman Jimmy Kerr’s two-out double cleared the bases to make the score 8-3 in the sixth inning. Canzone continued his hot hitting against the Wolverines with an RBI-double to right centerfield in the bottom of the sixth inning. A no doubter by Michigan sophomore designated hitter Jordan Nwogu over the left-center field wall made the game 9-4 in the seventh inning. This would be the only damage done against freshman pitcher Will Pfennig. The right-hander would go 3.1 innings in relief and strike out six to earn his second save of the season. “Will Pfennig is able to use his breaking ball, and command his ball to both sides of the plate,” Beals said. Ohio State outscored the Wolverines 20-9 in the first two games of the series. Game 2 Stellar pitching cooled Ohio State bats and carried Michigan to series-finale win. Ohio State (20-17, 4-5 Big Ten) fell 6-2 to Michigan (24-11, 5-3 Big Ten) in the second game of the doubleheader. After allowing 10 runs in each of the first two games, the Wolverines settled in to limit Ohio State’s potent offense. Michigan sophomore pitcher Jeff Criswell would put on the best pitching performance of any Michigan starter against Ohio State. He would go 6.2 innings, tying his longest outing, and allow only two runs.“They got good arms,” Beals said. “They have good, lively fastballs, and they attack with the fastballs.” Ohio State sophomore pitcher Griffan Smith has not won a game since March 3 against Bethune-Cookman. Smith’s last start was a career-high six innings pitched in a no-decision against Northwestern. Smith was unable to collect a win against Michigan, finishing with six strikeouts, one off his career high, but allowed four runs in five innings of work and earned his second loss of the season. Michigan struck first in the second inning with a solo home run by junior designated hitter Dominic Clementi, his first home run on the year. The junior emphasized the run by stomping on home plate, which would begin a four-inning stretch of scoring for the Wolverines. In the fourth, a triple by senior second baseman Ako Thomas pushed Michigan’s lead to three. In the bottom of the fifth inning, the Buckeyes were able to stop the bleeding with Dezenzo scoring from first base after a fielding error in left field. Canzone was able to bring home a second run after a groundout to shortstop brought home Winand. Canzone would extend his on-base streak to 33 games. The co-captain is now hitting .540 against Michigan in his career. “I just wanted to do everything I could for my brothers,” Canzone said. “That Team Up North isn’t coming in here and taking series from us.” The Wolverines would go on to score two more runs in the final four innings. This is the first home loss against Michigan for Beals. He is now 8-1 at home against the Wolverines. The Buckeyes will return to the diamond Tuesday at 6:35 p.m. when they host Xavier. read more

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January Designated As Human Trafficking Awareness Month

first_imgIn a proclamation issued on December 29,  President Trump announced that it is time for the U.S. to “recommit ourselves to eradicating the evil of enslavement.” Story as aired: Audio PlayerJennifer-on-January-as-human-trafficking-month.mp3VmJennifer-on-January-as-human-trafficking-month.mp300:00RPd Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享President Donald Trump designated January 2018 as  “National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month.” According to the proclamation, an estimated 25 million people are currently victims of human trafficking for both sex and labor. January 11 is the Blue Campaign’s “Wear Blue Day”, a day where you can all pledge solidarity with victims of human trafficking and raise awareness. The Blue Campaign is the unified partnership for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) efforts to combat human trafficking. Working in collaboration with law enforcement, government, non-governmental and private organizations. President Trump: “This month we do not simply reflect on this appalling reality.  We also pledge to do all in our power to end the horrific practice of human trafficking that plagues innocent victims around the world.”last_img read more