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Commentary: The Democrats’ Slow-Motion Demolition Derby

first_imgCommentary: The Democrats’ Slow-Motion Demolition DerbyAugust 6, 2019  By John KrullTheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Maybe it would easier and less complicated to have all the Democrats who aren’t running for president debate.Part of the problem with the two-night debate marathon that just ended in Detroit is that there were too many people on the stage. The result was a mess, a kind of slow-motion demolition derby that confused more than it illuminated.CNN has received criticism for the format, but it’s hard to see how the network could have devised something that would have served that many candidates and the audience than this approach did. Until the process winnows the field, it’s going to be hard to hold an event involving the candidates that dips below the surface in any meaningful way.This shouldn’t be a surprise.In 2016, the Republicans had a massive field of candidates, too. Their debates also were shambles, but they were shambles enlivened by Donald Trump’s successful efforts to turn the presidential race into a reality TV show. People tuned in to track the latest outrage.Thus far, no Democratic candidate has been willing to debase himself, herself or the process in the way that Trump did. This helps the candidates and the process preserve dignity, but it doesn’t make for compelling television viewing.That’s a problem for Democrats going forward.They’re unlikely to beat Trump, regardless of who the nominee is, if the national discussion stays at a superficial level. No one eligible to run for president this time around can command attention the way the current president can. He is the master of the Tweet and the quick sound bite designed to provoke a response. He loves to say what he thinks or what he will do.It’s the how that always trips him up.That’s why, more than three years after he promised a wall along the Mexican border that the Mexican government would be thrilled to pay for, he’s still scrambling to find a way to start construction and stick the U.S. taxpayers with the bill. The same goes for his pledge to implement a new healthcare plan that would cover everyone at greatly reduced costs. Or his commitment to revitalize America’s struggling manufacturing sector.On the surface, some of Trump’s pronouncements may sound alluring. Most fantasies do.But people live in the world of facts, which is why President Trump has struggled to deliver anything of substance to his working-class base.The Democrat who can beat Trump will be able to point that out. He or she will be able to drag Donald Trump away from his quick-hit, let’s-ignore-reality pronouncements and pull him back to the real world, the land where things don’t just happen because someone says they should.So far, that Democratic candidate has yet to emerge – and it’s hard to see how she or he could in a field this crowded.In Detroit, former Vice President Joe Biden performed better than he did a few weeks ago, but he looked as though contentious campaigning was something he was enduring rather than enjoying. He didn’t look like a guy who would enjoy mixing it up with a street fighter like Trump.Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, demonstrated that she plays offense better than she does defense. She may be able to hit Trump harder than any other Democrat, but she has yet to show that she can take a hit and keep moving forward.The two leading progressives – Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren – made effective cases for showcasing universal healthcare coverage as a Democratic campaign centerpiece, but at a cost. Their dismissal of concerns about taking choices away from Americans and the costs of their plans as “Republican talking points” indicated that they really didn’t have answers for what will be, in fact, Republican talking points.South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg did the best job of staying on message and then expanding on that message, but it’s still hard to see him as a figure who could unite a fractious party, particularly given that the only way he becomes the nominee is by dispatching rivals who waited for their shots a lot longer than he did.But that’s the way things stand now.If this crowded field shrinks to, say, about eight candidates, a lot could change.Democrats should hope that happens soon.FOOTNOTE: John Krull is director of Franklin College’s Pulliam School of Journalism and publisher of TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.This article was posted without option, bias or editing.Print Friendly, PDF & EmailFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

Stop trying to fix millennials

first_img continue reading » 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Millennials don’t leave companies, they leave their managers, says Antonio Neves, a millennial workplace speaker, author, and award-winning journalist.Young professionals want to be nurtured by leaders who are clearly invested and engaged in organizational and personal success, and won’t settle for managers who muddle through their careers.“Millennials aren’t something to be fixed. The same way Gen Xers, who were called slackers, weren’t something to be fixed. The same way baby boomers, who were innovative when they came to the workplace, weren’t something to be fixed. Millennials are something to be harnessed and appreciated,” Neves tells the CUNA News Podcast.last_img read more

Guarantees ‘strangling’ Germany’s Pensionskassen – Towers Watson

first_imgThe average discount rate applied by many Pensionskassen in Germany is still above 3.5% despite the yield from bonds having fallen in recent years, Udo Mangold, senior consultant at Towers Watson Germany, told delegates at the consultancy’s Pensionskassen Day in Frankfurt.This means pension funds have had to issue guarantees on reaching this return level – and this is “strangling Pensionskassen” and decreasing benefits, he said.“Too high guarantees are endangering the future survival of a Pensionskasse,” he added.According to Mangold, lowering the discount rate to 0% or 1% would allow Pensionskassen more freedom in their investments, as well as higher returns, which over the long term would benefit members. Earlier this year, Rainer Jakubowski, managing director at Germany’s largest Pensionskasse, the €25bn BVV, argued that limits on investment options were leading to “wrong” asset allocations.At the Towers Watson conference, Marco Herrmann, head of strategy, law and communications at the BVV, confirmed that his fund was already in the process of lowering discount rates – including in existing contracts.According to Mangold, the average discount rate in Pensionskassen will remain high over a long period if a new discount rate is only applied to new contracts.“Transitions where the Rechnungszins is lowered in existing contracts have already been made, and they have been okayed by the German supervisor BaFin,” he said.The consultant also pointed out that guarantees were based on the assumption new entrants would be paying into the Pensionskasse continuously over the next 45 years, which was not always the case.He warned Pensionskassen against promising a life-long pension payout when the contract was signed, as opposed to offering a one-off payout of accrued assets on retirement.“Providers can always offer a pension payout option later,” he added.Herrmann suggested a way to increase assets in Pensionskassen would be to allow a higher percentage of the salary to be transferred.The German government argues that many members have not even reached the 4% threshold currently allowed.But the BVV representative pointed out this was different for members in his fund, which all are working in the financial sector.“In fact, we would need an 8-10% threshold to ensure they can keep up their standard of living on retirement,” he said.The BVV is now trying to encourage more people to contribute to the Pensionskasse themselves.last_img read more

NHL rumors: Kelly McCrimmon, Dean Lombardi on reported shortlist for Oilers GM

first_img (Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/d7/79/oliver-ekman-larsson-draft-040319-getty-ftrjpeg_nyxosgyb6e98104s0ww18xodv.jpg?t=-468428855&w=500&quality=80 Speculation over the Oilers next GM began almost as soon as Chiarelli received his walking papers. A month ago, The Score cited TSN’s Darren Dreger reporting Oilers CEO Bob Nicholson narrowed the list of potential candidates.The notables under consideration could include former Los Angeles Kings GM Dean Lombardi, Vegas Golden Knights assistant GM Kelly McCrimmon, Montreal Canadiens pro scout Sean Burke, Anaheim Ducks consultant (and former Vancouver Canucks GM) Dave Nonis and Los Angeles Kings assistant GM Mike Futa. McCrimmon is said to be coveted by the Oilers but he’s not the only team interested in hiring him. David Schoen of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports McCrimmon’s near the top of the wish list of Seattle’s expansion team as well.Sportsnet’s Mark Spector also mentioned Tampa Bay Lightning assistant GM Pat Verbeek and Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland as possible options. He admits, however, Holland is unlikely to leave Detroit.Gretzky could also be in the running, and not because of his famous brother. He built up a solid resume as a director of pro scouting with the Arizona Coyotes and Boston Bruins prior to joining Edmonton. Among the players he had a hand in drafting were Oliver Ekman-Larsson, David Pastrnak, Charlie McAvoy, Brandon Carlo and Jake DeBrusk.However, the main knock against Gretzky is he served as Chiarelli’s assistant for the last three seasons. Despite his record with the Coyotes and Bruins, ownership could decide on a clean sweep of the previous management. Efforts to overhaul the roster will be hindered by the team’s current salary-cap constraints. With over $71.7 million tied up in 16 players for 2019-20, the Oilers will have around $12 million to work with should the cap reach $83 million as projected.Given all these factors and how much work is needed to reverse the Oilers long-sagging fortunes, it could take at least a couple of years before real improvement is seen under a new GM and head coach.With McDavid and Draisaitl in their early twenties, and with years remaining on their long-term contracts, the Oilers do have some time to rebuild around their two superstars. The pair are willing to be patient and be part of the process, but this club must avoid the pitfalls of previous management. Otherwise, they risk wasting the best years of their best two players. The next Oilers GM faces the formidable task of turning around a franchise mired in mediocrity since its last run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2006. They’ve reached the playoffs just once (2017) over the last 14 seasons.Despite landing the first overall pick four times since 2010, and selecting superstars such as Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and Taylor Hall in the first round, the Oilers failed to build around their best players.Among their recent blunders was swapping Hall for Adam Larsson, trading Jordan Eberle for Ryan Strome, giving away Justin Schultz to Pittsburgh for a third-round pick, and signing left wing Milan Lucic to a seven-year, $42-million contract.The Oilers also need a coach who can bring a measure of stability and end the revolving door behind the bench. They’ve gone through eight coaches since 2009, including such luminaries as Hitchcock, McLellan and Hall of Famer Pat Quinn. Former Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville is available. He’s got a long and impressive coaching resume, including guiding the Hawks to three Stanley Cups. Alain Vigneault, former head coach of the Montreal Canadiens, Vancouver Canucks and New York Rangers, is another. He guided the Canucks and Rangers to the Stanley Cup Final and won the Jack Adams Award in 2007. Whether the Oilers can woo one of them remains to be seen.The roster also needs plenty of work. Apart from superstars McDavid and Draisaitl, the Oilers have a good two-way center in Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, two top-four defensemen in Darnell Nurse and Oscar Klefbom; however, not much else. #SportsnetStat 📊 With his two helpers last night against the Colorado Avalanche, #Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has now set career highs in goals (28), assists (39) & points (67) this season. pic.twitter.com/xgUZ5MPVeD— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) April 3, 2019Questionable goaltending plus the lack of secondary scoring punch and a true top-two defenseman are some of the biggest issues. Signing goaltender Mikko Koskinen to a three-year contract was Chiarelli’s last act as GM. The netminder has yet to establish himself as a reliable NHL starter.Veteran defenseman Andrej Sekera provides experienced skill to the blueline but missed most of the past two seasons with serious injuries. Up front, Lucic is past his prime as an effective power forward and promising winger Jesse Puljujarvi struggled to reach his potential as a scorer before season-ending hip surgery. As another disappointing regular season draws to a close for the Edmonton Oilers players, the work is just beginning for the front office staff. They’ll spend the coming weeks looking for a new full-time general manager and head coach as Peter Chiarelli was fired as GM in January, replaced on an interim basis with assistant GM Keith Gretzky, and Ken Hitchcock took over as interim bench boss last November after Todd McLellan’s firing.The search will now begin in earnest for Chiarelli’s full-time successor who will have a say in selecting the next head coach. last_img read more

English clubs shortlisted for national awards

first_img23 Oct 2015 English clubs shortlisted for national awards English clubs figure strongly in the shortlists for the 2015 Golf Club Management Awards, which have been expanded to cover three categories. The awards, organised by the Golf Club Managers’ Association (GCMA), will be presented to the Manager of the Year and to the new categories, the Newcomer Manager of the Year, and Golf Club Team of the Year, including the manager, professional and head greenkeeper. The shortlisted nominees are: Manager of the Year Andrew Minty – Langland Bay GC, Wales Alison Malham – Seaton Carew GC, Durham Phil Bonsall – Piltdown GC, Sussex Tracy Rawlinson – Warrington GC, Cheshire Newcomer Manager of the Year Stuart Leech – Formby GC, Lancashire Alex Woodward – Boyce Hill GC, Essex Team of the Year High Post GC, Wiltshire Royal Cromer GC, Norfolk Bob Williams, chief executive of the GCMA, said: “The competition has grown exponentially in the decade since its inception and the time was right to expand it into three categories. “The standard of all the initial nominees was extremely high, and whittling them down to three shortlists wasn’t easy. Choosing overall winners was even more difficult – every candidate presented themselves impressively – but after considerable discussion, we are confident that the winners we’ve chosen truly represent the highest standard of golf club management.” The awards will be presented at the GCMA’s conference in November. Previous Manager of the Year winners include Emma Clifford (pictured) of West Essex GC, Debbie Pern of Deeside GC, Scotland, Peter Johns of Eaton GC, Norwich, and Gary Pearce of Fulford GC, York.   Click here for the GCMA websitelast_img read more

OnePlus Type-C Bullets will cost Rs 1,490 in India, to launch alongside OnePlus 6T

first_imgOnePlus will soon announce its OnePlus 6 successor and while the company hasn’t confirmed that it will be called the OnePlus 6T, it has confirmed that the phone will lose the headphone jack. To soften the blow for OnePlus fans who still believe in wired headphones, OnePlus announced that it will launch the Type-C Bullets along with the upcoming flagship. The company also revealed in a separate statement that the Type-C Bullets will cost Rs 1,490 in India. The earphones will be available through offline and online channels after launch.Up until now, OnePlus was among a very few mainstream brands to have held onto the 3.5mm headphone jack. The company even held a poll prior to the launch of the OnePlus 6 to show that a substantial number of people wanted the jack even after companies like Apple and Google removed it from their phones. And so the OnePlus 6 also comes with a headphone jack. But now the company believes that it’s time to let go of the jack as more and more people are now switching to wireless headphones. According to an internal poll conducted by OnePlus 59 per cent of users are now using wireless headphones. This is also one of the reasons the company launched the popular Bullets Wireless earphones.OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei said in an interview that the decision to do this was because it will allow OnePlus to offer better technology, such as a better audio quality over the Type-C port. It will also allow the company to fit a larger battery inside, so expect the OnePlus 6T to house a battery bigger than 3,300mAh.advertisement The Type-C Bullets is a big improvement over the Bullets V2, Pei said. The upgrades will allow the earphones to deliver “a crisp and powerful sound.” As per OnePlus’ statement, the earphones not only deliver a “superior soundscape” but the wire is also more durable as the company has added aramid fiber to the wire that will make it resistant to stretching. The company adds that the Type-C headphones will ensure minimal loss of sound quality compared to 3.5mm headphones.OnePlus’ move may come as a surprise for fans as the company has always promised to deliver features that the fans want most. But the company says that these decisions are required in order to bring the best technology forward. This is why the OnePlus 6 got a notch, another trend that has been pretty polarising among consumers. The notch allowed the device to bring the biggest display yet, and rumours have it that the OnePlus 6T will sport a tiny waterdrop notch like the Oppo R17.last_img read more