How did politics around reopening Anchorage get so heated?

first_imgCoronavirus | SouthcentralHow did politics around reopening Anchorage get so heated?May 2, 2020 by Zachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media Share:OpenAlaska protesters pushing for a speedy opening of the economy gathered outside the Loussac Library in Anchorage on Wednesday, April 22, 2020. (Photo courtesy Lex Treinen/Alaska Public Media)The Alaska Watchman is a website offering a conservative religious perspective on Alaska news and social issues. In a video released earlier this week, publisher Jake Libbey laid out an argument about the different approaches taken by Alaska’s two most prominent executive leaders: Gov. Mike Dunleavy, and Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz.“Both men are following data and weighing hospital capacity and medical supplies against the number of [COVID-19]cases, with the aim of keeping the pandemic under control,” Libbey says, speaking into the camera. “But Berkowitz’s response to struggling business owners has struck a negative cord with many Alaskans.”Though state and local policies are nearly identical, according to Libbey the governor has spoken to residents more respectfully.“Contrast the mayor’s approach to that of governor Dunleavy, who has repeatedly said he will not use police powers to enforce compliance with his health mandates. Instead, the governor has relied on the good will of fellow Alaskans,” Libbey said.The politics around reopening Alaska’s economy are getting contentious. But blame isn’t spread uniformly. In Anchorage, a vocal contingent is faulting Berkowitz for economic woes connected to the pandemic shutdown, even though many agree the policies are largely in lockstep with Dunleavy’s.In explaining the lopsided criticism, some point to a divide in leadership styles, while others say the split is little more than political opportunism.Libbey explained that he see’s Berkowitz’s willingness to use code enforcement against businesses, as well as the mayor’s advice that residents report bad behavior, as using a stick-style approach to compel the public’s obedience, rather than a carrot.“It’s his tone and candor with respect to violations and encouraging people to inform on their neighbors that I think is the crux of the umbrage,” Libbey said during an interview.By and large, businesses have been willing to abide by the Executive Order closures, even if many are not happy about it. According to a spokesperson for the Berkowitz administration, a total of five Stop Work orders were issued city-wide during the “hunker down” phase of the emergency measures.“Overall, compliance with the EO’s by the businesses has been tremendous. There have been misunderstandings of the requirements, at times, however those were worked through,” wrote Carolyn Hall, communications director for the municipality, in an email.Still, Libbey’s website, as well as a constellation of conservative blogs, social media pages, and right-wing commentators have heaped scorn on the mayor’s actions, even when they ran parallel with the governor’s orders.In a letter to the editor published in the Anchorage Daily News April 10, former Anchorage mayor Dan Sullivan faulted Berkowitz for allowing cannabis retailers and liquor stores to stay open but keeping restaurants closed.“I would recommend that Mayor Ethan Berkowitz re-evaluate why certain businesses are essential and can remain open while others, like bars and restaurants, if they take the proper precautions, cannot,” Sullivan wrote, although this same policy was in place all around the state.A prominent conservative blogger, Suzanne Downing, labeled a requirement that restaurants in Anchorage keep a name and phone number on file for 30-days each time a reservation is booked as “the Berkowitz data-mining mandate.” Though specific to restaurants in the municipality, the measure is intended to help with contact tracing in case of an outbreak, according to city public health officials.Alaska is far from the only state seeing a politicization over the question of how to protect public health while gradually restarting the economy. Protests in the last few weeks in Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and other states have demanded that governors relax restrictions and distancing measures. In those states, unlike Alaska, politicians were not in the process of relaxing the rules while the protests were occurring.What some say is a legitimate response to government overreach, others see as political operators taking advantage of fear and anger about the pandemic.In Alaska, one such critic is Andrew Halcro, a Republican who ran against Berkowitz in the 2015 mayor’s race, and served across the aisle from him in the Legislature. He now works in the administration as head of the Anchorage Community Development Authority. Halcro sees the flood of blame directed towards the mayor as opportunistic and politically driven, and points to last week’s Open Alaska vehicle protests, which were carried out even as both the city and state announced they were  easing restrictions.“These aren’t people with a rational argument to re-open the economy, these are people who are looking to make political hay,” Halcro said of the event’s organizers and prominent boosters.“To be perfectly honest with you, it pisses me off,” he added.Halcro thinks there’s another major factor at play: next year’s mayoral race. Though the office of the mayor is technically non-partisan in Anchorage, it hews closely to orthodox party politics. Berkowitz served in the legislature as a Democrat, and his administration has had a generally liberal bend. Because of term limits, he is ineligible to run again next spring, making it an open race. Between then and now, Halcro expects candidates and partisan operators from both political parties to aggressively spin narratives that help their interests on social media, in editorials, on talk radio, and on blogs.“For the next 11 months we’re going to get a steady stream of ‘the city’s on fire, and we need to be rescued,’” he said.Though their political affiliations don’t align, Halcro defends the mayor’s record handling an onslaught of difficulties during his tenure: an economic recession, a major earthquake, and problems with crime and homelessness. And he argues that at least among Anchorage voters, there is clear support for the administration and its political allies in the Assembly. He pointed to the results of the April 7 municipal elections, when every incumbent assembly candidate running was re-elected, and almost every ballot measure proposed by the administration, including a new tax on alcohol, passed.“We live in a time when everything becomes political,” said Bill Evans, a conservative candidate for next year’s mayoral race in Anchorage, who served on the assembly until 2017.He thinks both Dunleavy and Berkowitz have done a fine job managing the crisis, but he sees people from both the left and right personalizing criticism against officials from opposite parties. Evans thinks the escalating rhetoric might be the natural outcome of a high stress situation at a time when people’s perspectives are shaped through filtered information streams.“This is literally life and death for people, health-wise and economically. So it’s going to get people’s emotions up, and that just turns to politics,” Evans said.He added that when people are frustrated, it is easier to direct that anger toward a politician whose views they generally disagree with. In this case, there is an outpouring of conservative displeasure toward Berkowitz. But, Evans said, he’s certainly seen the reverse.Share this story:last_img read more

Behind Greece’s Problems

first_img Behind Greece’s Problems James Nickerson whatsapp Show Comments ▼ whatsapp by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeMoneyPailShe Was A Star, Now She Works In ScottsdaleMoneyPailInvestment GuruRemember Cote De Pablo? Take A Deep Breath Before You See Her NowInvestment GuruSwift VerdictChrissy Metz, 39, Shows Off Massive Weight Loss In Fierce New PhotoSwift VerdictMaternity WeekA Letter From The Devil Written By A Possessed Nun In 1676 Has Been TranslatedMaternity WeekPost FunKate & Meghan Are Very Different Mothers, These Photos Prove ItPost FunForbesThese 10 Colleges Have Produced The Most Billionaire AlumniForbesComedyAbandoned Submarines Floating Around the WorldComedyGameday NewsNBA Wife Turns Heads Wherever She GoesGameday Newszenherald.comMeghan Markle Changed This Major Detail On Archies Birth Certificatezenherald.com Tags: Expert Voices Friday 10 July 2015 9:23 am Greece will not get very far out of its present morass without coming to grips with how it got there. The country provides a textbook example of a flawed economic system.The public sector is notorious for its corporatist practice of clientelism to gain votes and cronyism to gain favours – though some say that Italy and France are as bad. Some evidence suggests the magnitude: Greece’s government pensions relative to productivity are twice Spain’s. The government favors the elites in business with tax free status. Many state employees do not have to report for work. It is less well-known that Greece’s private sector is rife with companies that do not compete with each other and block or impede entry of new firms bearing new ideas. The dearth of competition can be measured: The last available OECD data showed profits as a share of business income at a whopping 46 percent in Greece, far exceeding the shares in the 22 other members. Here Italy was second at 42 percent and France at 41 percent. (The UK was at 32, the US at 35 and Germany at 39.) Greece appears to be the most corporatist economy in Europe.The resulting economy is almost devoid of the dynamism needed for indigenous innovation. Hence, Greece has high unemployment and little potential for sustained productivity growth. And with competition so weak, entrepreneurs have not rushed in to hire people from the swollen ranks of the unemployed. It is no wonder that the employment recovery underway from late 2013 until early 2015 was relatively slow next to Ireland, the U.K. and Spain.What can be done? Some economists believe that the Greeks’ work ethic and thrift can pull them through. But the classical virtues can do nothing to offset the dearth of innovation that plagues the economy.Some other economists believe that Keynesian tools alone – devaluation and other stimuli to demand – can engineer offer wide prosperity. But the Keynesian belief that “demand” is always at the root of under-employment and slow growth is a fallacy. (Greece’s long structural stagnation, interrupted briefly by Brussels’ “structural funds,” is a counterexample.)Equally fallacious is the belief that even if an economy has been stunted by corporatist practices, Keynesian tools can hammer the economy back into shape. As history shows – including Greece’s – the resort to fiscal stimulus is ultimately ineffective at best; and it may even add to the difficulties.Thus, no amount of debt restructuring, even debt forgiveness, will help the Greeks achieve real prosperity. What they need is not short-term relief but, rather, a long-term cure.The Eurozone creditors could best help Greece by inducing it to rid itself of its corporatist practices in the public and private sectors. It is a question, though, whether the creditor countries, themselves rather corporatist, would be willing to eradicate practices in Greece that they largely accept at home. Sharelast_img read more

Pharmalittle: What did the lawmaker do with his biotech stock? Takeda edges closer to a Shire deal

first_img Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry. Pharmalittle: What did the lawmaker do with his biotech stock? Takeda edges closer to a Shire deal Ed Silverman Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free! GET STARTED Pharmalot GET STARTED About the Author Reprints [email protected] STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. Alex Hogan/STATcenter_img Log In | Learn More @Pharmalot What is it? What’s included? Good morning, everyone, and welcome to another working week. We hope the weekend respite was relaxing and invigorating, because that oh-so-predictable routine of meetings, deadlines, and the like has, of course, returned. What can you do, though? The world simply keeps spinning, even if it sometimes causes a bit of vertigo. So to cope, yes, we are firing up the coffee kettle for cups of stimulation and invite you to join us. Meanwhile, here are some tidbits to get you going. Hope today is manageable and, as always, do keep in touch. We enjoy the tips, feedback and suggestions …New guidelines for treating high cholesterol suggest physicians consider a patient’s family history of cardiovascular disease and, in some cases, a heart scan before prescribing medicines, The Wall Street Journal writes. The guidelines also recommend prescribing two PCSK9 inhibitors for high-risk patients when statins, the traditional cholesterol-lowering medication, do not work. However, due to their cost, one PCSK9 inhibitor should be prescribed only when the other, a generic medication, doesn’t work. Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. By Ed Silverman Nov. 12, 2018 Reprints Tags drug developmentdrug pricingfinanceglobal healthinfectious diseaseopioidspharmaceuticalspharmalittlepolicySTAT+Vaccineslast_img read more

Three reasons to add stocks to portfolios now

Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Session ID: 2021-06-14:5fdaa035583d68932669df24 Player Element ID: vjs_video_3 OK Close Modal DialogBeginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Kate Warne Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:58Loaded: 0.00%0:00Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently behind liveLIVERemaining Time -1:58 1xPlayback RateChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window. This video is either unavailable or not supported in this browser Error Code: MEDIA_ERR_SRC_NOT_SUPPORTED Technical details : The media could not be loaded, either because the server or network failed or because the format is not supported. read more

AGF acquires Robitaille Asset Management

Share this article and your comments with peers on social media CI GAM launches Bitcoin mutual fund AGF Investments Inc. said Tuesday it acquired Robitaille Asset Management Inc., a Montreal-based investment firm responsible for the management of AGF Dividend Income Fund. The two firms have also amalgamated, continuing as one company under the name AGF Investments Inc. NEO, Invesco launch four index PTFs Keywords Fund managers,  Mergers and acquisitionsCompanies AGF Management Ltd. Related news Franklin Templeton renames funds with new managers Founded by Marc-André Robitaille in 2007, RAM has more than $615 million in assets under management, and specializes in Canadian equity and income mandates. As a result of the acquisition, Robitaille and his team will join AGF’s investment management team. They will remain based in Montreal and will play a key role as AGF strengthens its commitment to the Quebec and Eastern Canada market. Robitaille remains the lead portfolio manager on AGF Dividend Income Fund. He will also manage the equity component of AGF Traditional Balanced Fund, while Tristan Sones will continue to lead the fixed income component. Toronto-based AGF Management Ltd. (TSX:AGF.B) offers mutual funds and other investments to investors as well as manages assets on behalf of institutional investors. IE Staff Facebook LinkedIn Twitter read more

OSC seeks new members for Securities Advisory Committee

first_img OSC adds vice chair, commissioner SEC names new top cop OSC vice-chair’s position extended to 2022 Related news The committee generally meets on a monthly basis and provides advice to the regulator on a variety of matters, including legal and regulatory initiatives, and, the market implications of commission rules, policies, operations, and administration. Its members also provide their perspectives on emerging trends in the marketplace, the OSC says. Prospective members of the committee are expected to have a strong interest in regulatory policy, including in-depth knowledge of the securities legislation and rules, along with significant experience in the securities industry. Lawyers in private practice, and in-house counsel at an exchange, institutional investor, or dealer, are invited to apply for membership to the general counsel’s office of the commission by Nov. 27. The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) announced on Thursday it is seeking four new securities industry regulatory experts to sit on its Securities Advisory Committee (SAC). The purpose of the SAC is to advise the regulator, and its staff, on a variety of matters including policy initiatives and capital markets trends. The OSC is looking for four new members to serve on the SAC for a three-year term, beginning in January 2016. center_img Share this article and your comments with peers on social media James Langton Keywords AppointmentsCompanies Ontario Securities Commission Facebook LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more

FSCO takes further step to protect syndicated mortgage investors

first_img IE Staff dbvirago/123RF Also readFSCO issues $1.1 million in fines over syndicated mortgagesAt that time, BDMC voluntarily agreed that FAAN Mortgage would take over management of BDMC’s mortgage administration business for the benefit of investors in BDMC’s existing syndicated mortgage loans.“Since FAAN Mortgage started managing BDMC’s mortgage administration business, BDMC has committed multiple breaches of the agreement between the two entities, including restricting access to investor data. This, among other things, impeded FAAN Mortgage’s ability to carry out its responsibilities, leading FSCO to seek a court-appointed trustee,” FSCO says in a news release.As court-appointed trustee, FAAN Mortgage will now have additional powers to help protect investors, such as unfettered access to financial books and records, and the ability to contact borrowers and lenders without hindrance.Investors with syndicated mortgage loans administered by BDMC may contact FAAN Mortgage at [email protected] and 1-833-495-3338 to inquire about their investments. The Superintendent of Financial Services (FSCO) has successfully applied to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to appoint Toronto-based FAAN Mortgage Administrators Inc. (FAAN Mortgage) as the trustee to administer Richmond Hill, Ont.-based Building Development and Mortgages Canada Inc.’s (BDMC) syndicated mortgage loans in accordance with a court order issued last week.In February, FSCO issued a series of fines totalling more than $1.1 million, against BDMC, three other mortgage brokerages, and four licensed individuals, following an investigation into syndicated mortgage investments. Keywords Syndicated mortgagesCompanies Financial Services Commission of Ontario Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Share this article and your comments with peers on social medialast_img read more

IOSCO details best practices for commodity storage

first_img SEC charges five in US$2-billion crypto trading scheme James Langton The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) issued a report today that details good practices for commodity storage infrastructure firms, organizations that oversee those firms and financial regulators. The report is part of an effort by global securities regulators to enhance the operation of commodity derivatives markets.IOSCO says that implementing the practices proposed in its report “will lead to a more transparent and robust environment for the physical storage and delivery of commodities, producing benefits for all commodity market participants.” Regulators must avert looming irrelevance: IAP Related news Financial Technology concept illustration of Businessman pointing at abstract blue business charts and icons peshkova/123RF Regulators issue new reporting guidance on systems outages Today’s report follows previous work from IOSCO, which found “a wide range of practices” in physical storage infrastructure. Practices for oversight, governance, operations and controls were found to vary by commodity, trading venue and jurisdiction. The regulators are concerned that these divergences could affect derivatives pricing, market integrity and efficiency.The report’s recommendations cover various areas, including oversight, transparency, conflicts of interest, fees and incentives, and operations.“The overarching objective of the good or sound practices,” the report states, “is to create a framework that incentivizes the market to adopt best practices and self-correction, rather than one that prohibits certain behaviours.” Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Keywords Commodities,  RegulationCompanies International Organization of Securities Commissions Facebook LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more

IIROC drops expanded OBSI reporting proposal

first_imgchange direction iStock.com / scyther5 IIROC said that while most of the feedback that it received on the proposals was “generally supportive,” commenters also wanted more detail on the specific sort of information that the SRO would be requesting from OBSI, and how that information would be used.Instead of pursuing the changes as stand-alone amendments, IIROC said that it will include them as part of another ongoing project to develop “comprehensive amendments respecting reporting, internal investigation and client complaint requirements.”The SRO will consider the comments received on the proposals regarding OBSI as part of that new project, which will introduce a principles-based reporting requirement that “focuses on harm to clients and the capital markets,” it said.The project will also make reporting requirements clearer, and better align reporting requirements and complaint requirements.That new proposal is expected to be published in the summer. Related news Retail trading surge on regulators’ radar, Vingoe says James Langton Keywords Self-regulatory organizations,  Dispute resolution,  ComplaintsCompanies Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments, Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada Facebook LinkedIn Twitter IAP to focus on SROs, taskforce in 2021 Amid a review of complaint-handling requirements and internal investigations, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) is scrapping proposed rule changes that would expand reporting from the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI).In a notice, the self-regulatory organization (SRO) said that it’s withdrawing a set of proposed amendments that would have eliminated restrictions on the information that it receives from OBSI. When does poor service become a regulatory issue for online brokerages? Share this article and your comments with peers on social medialast_img read more

COSBOA releases report on lessons learned from time of COVID

first_imgCOSBOA releases report on lessons learned from time of COVID Council of Small Business Organisations AustraliaConsistency and Consultation are essential when managing a crisis and preparing for the next crisis.COSBOA today released its report “The Small Business Perspective – A Survey and Review of the events, responses and Impacts of COVID-19 over 12 months from leaders representing small businesses.” It can be found at https://www.cosboa.org.au/covidCOSBOA surveyed leaders of 33 industry associations representing a diverse range of small businesses about their experiences of Australian government responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. They were asked about the impact of state and federal measures to stop the spread of the virus, the impact of assistance measures for small businesses, as well as their experiences with government consultation.The survey is accompanied by an analysis of government decisions based on a review of media /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Australia, Australian, Australian Government, business, covid-19, crisis, Government, Impact, industry, Media, pandemic, Small Business, survey, viruslast_img read more