Fivestar Athletics facing stiff penalties; tips for entering contracts

first_imgAll fitness contracts have to be in writing and they have to contain certain information, as outlined by B.C. law.For more tips and information about B.C.’s fitness contract law, visit www.consumerprotectionbc.ca. Consumers can cancel their fitness contract within 10 days of signing, no matter what. (Also, consumers must receive their refund within 15 days of cancelling). The investigation into Fivestar Athletics began after Consumer Protection B.C. received a complaint that customers were being illegally entered into verbal contacts and denied cancellation rights.“Contracts required by martial arts studios and gyms are called continuing service contracts and this business sector needs to know there are serious consequences for breaking the law,” spokesperson for Consumer Protection B.C., Tatiana Chabeaux-Smith said in a written response. “The bottom line is that verbal contracts are not allowed and cancellation rights must be honoured.”The facility is now being ordered to meet a number of requirements under the Compliance Order and Administrative Penalty, including the reimbursement of $1,560 to a consumer, the payment of penalities totalling $2,300, and the reimbursement of $500 to Consumer Protection B.C. for partial inspection cost.- Advertisement -Fivestar Athletics must also immediately comply with contract requirements under the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act, as well as the Consumer Contracts Regulation.What you should know before entering a fitness contractConsumer Protection B.C. is offering the following advice for anyone considering a gym membership for the upcoming year:Advertisementcenter_img Consumers can cancel their fitness contract under certain circumstances (called “material changes”). For example, if the consumer moves more than 30 km away from the gym and comparable facilities aren’t available, they are allowed to cancel.last_img read more

QPR forward ‘set for Brentford’

first_imgRob Hulse could join Brentford, according to the Daily Mirror.It is claimed the Bees are looking to take him on loan from QPR, where he is not part of manager Mark Hughes’ plans.Hulse, who turns 33 next month, is one of a number of players Hughes is keen to offload.Luke Young, DJ Campbell and keeper Radek Cerny have also been tipped to leave Loftus Road on loan.Brentford enquired about Hulse in March but Hughes was reluctant to loan out any of his 25-man squad, which the striker was then part of.Related West London Sport story: Brentford ask about QPR striker (16 March)Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img

Plant Lignin Found in Red Algae

first_imgTime to rewrite the textbooks again.  The story of plant evolution is wrong.  Lignin, a chemical that gives wood its stiffness, was thought to be unique to land plants.  Now it has been found in red algae, reported Science Daily, with the title, “Billion-year Revision Of Plant Evolution Timeline May Stem From Discovery Of Lignin In Seaweed.”  This story illustrates that anything is possible in evolutionary biology these days.    According to evolutionists, red algae emerged much earlier than land plants.  How are they going to explain a complex molecule, which is manufactured by a complex process, being found in a more “primitive” life form?  “Because red and green algae likely diverged more than a billion years ago, the discovery of lignin in red algae suggests that the basic machinery for producing lignin may have existed long before algae moved to land.”  But that just seems to restate the problem.  The alternative, though, is even harder to swallow: “Alternatively, algae and land plants may have evolved the identical compound independently, after they diverged.”    The independent evolution of an identical compound in unrelated lines is tantamount to a miracle.  Look what Mark Denny of Stanford said about this: “The pathways, enzymes and genes that go into making this stuff are pretty complicated, so to come up with all those separately would be really, really amazing,”says Denny.  “Anything is possible, but that would be one hell of a coincidence.”Paper View: Denny’s statement warranted a further look at the original paper in Current Biology.1  Sure enough, the only two options were evolutionary, and neither was unproblematic.  “The discovery of polymerized hydroxycinnamyl alcohols (lignin) within the cell walls of a red alga has major evolutionary implications,” they said in a tone of understatement.  Either the ability to synthesize lignin emerged in a single-celled ancestor (with no need for the sturdiness of plant stems), or it emerged by convergent evolution in unrelated lineages.  “Because monolignol synthesis is exceptionally complex, it seems unlikely that Calliarthron [the red alga] and terrestrial plants evolved monolignol biosynthesis and polymerization completely independently,” they confessed (see 05/30/2008, bullet 2).  Why, then, did the title of their paper say this “reveals convergent evolution of cell-wall architecture”?  Perhaps there is a way to get the best of both explanations.  “It seems more likely that relevant pathways, such as phenylpropanoid biosynthesis and polymerization by peroxidase-catalyzed oxidation, may be deeply conserved, having evolved prior to the divergence of red and green algae more than 1 billion years ago.”  If so, “we may expect to find conserved enzymatic pathways and, potentially, evidence of lignification among the multitude of evolutionary intermediates.”  The search is on.    Nevertheless, they did entertain the possibility that red algae and land plants converged on the highly-complex lignin pathways independently.  For support, they pointed to one other case of convergent evolution in lignin synthesis: “For example, angiosperms and the lycopod Selaginella synthesize S lignin via distinct and independently evolved cytochrome-P450-dependent monooxygenases, and production of S lignin in Calliarthron may reflect a third convergent pathway.”  This seems to beg the question that they evolved.  Perhaps two improbabilities are better than one, and three better than two.  Since nothing but evolution is allowed in the explanation, though, those are the choices.  Maybe imagining other uses for lignin in microbes will help:Lignins are thought to have evolved in the green algal lineage as adaptations to terrestrial habitats, facilitating hydraulic transport and contributing to the mechanical stability of upright stems.  However, contrary to the current paradigm, our data indicate that H, G, and S lignins exist within a red alga’s calcified cells that lack hydraulic vasculature and have little need for additional support.  We speculate that lignin biosynthetic pathways may have functioned in the common unicellular ancestor of red and green algae, protecting cells from microbial infection or UV radiation, and in Calliarthron, lignins may orient the fibrillar scaffolding that guides CaCO3 deposition.While we’re speculating, let’s imagine more with the long leash of evolutionary thinking.  There may have been other needs within brainless microbes that provided opportunities for evolutionary invention via “selective pressure.”The presence of G lignin within the secondary walls of peripheral genicular cells may represent convergent evolution of cellular architecture in response to mechanical stress, given that G lignins also concentrate within secondary walls of terrestrial plant fibers.  Selective pressures in the marine environment differ from those on land, but the wind-induced drag forces that presumably contributed to the evolution of wood in terrestrial plants are mirrored by flow-induced drag forces on aquatic algae.  On land, xylem lends mechanical support to erect stems, and in water, genicula provide mechanical support to Calliarthron fronds.  As articulated fronds bend back and forth under breaking waves, bending stresses are amplified within peripheral genicular tissue, which develops thick secondary walls, apparently to resist breakage…. We hypothesize that this putative 3- to 5-fold upregulation of lignin biosynthesis in peripheral genicular cells may be mechanically stimulated by bending stresses imposed by breaking waves.  Similar mechanical on/off switches for lignin accumulation have been noted in terrestrial systems: plants grown in microgravity synthesize less lignin, whereas plants grown in hypergravity synthesize more lignin.  The mechanical consequences of such minute quantities of lignin on genicular material properties may be negligible.  Nevertheless, that genicular tissue contains lignin and is also stronger, stiffer, and yet more extensible than other algal tissues is an intriguing coincidence, and lignin’s potential role in these properties is an area of active research.Their reasoning leaves out a key question.  Their evidence refers only to spots where lignin accumulates in response to mechanical stress.  How did it get there in the first place?  What does accumulation have to do with the origin of the lignin synthesis machinery?  They didn’t say.  The argument merely hints that an applied stress will somehow produce the goods.  Necessity is the mother of invention.    Having earlier admitted that lignin synthesis is “exceptionally complex,” it is perhaps surprising to hear them land on the side of convergent evolution in their concluding paragraph.  Their last sentence included overt teleological language:Convergent evolution of cell structure and development in Calliarthron genicula and terrestrial xylem may clarify lignin biosynthesis and lend insight into the early evolution of land plants.  It is striking that Calliarthron contains lignified cell walls but evolved from calcified ancestors that lacked water-conducting tracheids or vessels.  Vascular plants may have realized hydraulic transport by tapping into ancient biosynthetic pathways that initially evolved to fortify unicellular walls and were later adapted to provide biomechanical support.With funding from the National Science Foundation, Patrick Martone (co-author with Denny) is continuing work on this surprising discovery.  Science Daily ended, “Martone says the research team has started looking for billion-year-old lignin genes that might be shared among land plants and red algae, and has started exploring whether lignin exists in other aquatic algae and what role it plays in the evolution and function of aquatic plants.”1.  Martone, Estevez, Lu, Ruel, Denny, Somerville and Ralph, “Discovery of Lignin in Seaweed Reveals Convergent Evolution of Cell-Wall Architecture,” Current Biology, Volume 19, Issue 2, 27 January 2009, Pages 169-175, doi:10.1016/j.cub.2008.12.031.Darwinism is supposed to be this law-governed, enlightened, mechanistic, scientific theory that gives rational explanations for observed phenomena in nature.  Pray tell, what is the difference between their evolutionary explanation and that of a shaman?  We have just seen these scientists invoke spirits.  They called on the spirit of convergent evolution, the spirit of Tinker Bell, and the spirit of vascular plants tapping into ancient biosynthetic pathways that “initially evolved to fortify” cell walls of microbes.  These purpose-driven spirits produced lignin biosynthesis machinery on demand, just because of environmental stress.  Miraculous (see 03/25/2003).  “Anything is possible,” Denny said.  At least Christians have a sufficient Cause when they say, “With God, all things are possible.”    When you learn to look past the big words and identify the key passages in a scientific paper, it’s like taking your gaze off the Wizard of Oz act and pulling up the curtain where the charlatan is hiding.  A theory that says “anything can happen,” even coincidences that are “really, really amazing” can explain anything.  Is this enlightened?  Is this progressive?  Is this rational?  No matter what the observations, the Darwin Party has carte blanche to say “It evolved, because stuff happens” (09/15/2008).  To get really disgusted, read how the Astrobiology Magazine spun this finding in to a positive for evolution!  “The team’s finding provides a new perspective on the early evolution of lignified support tissues – such as wood – on land, since the seaweed tissues that are most stressed by waves crashing on shore appear to contain the most lignin, possibly contributing to mechanical support, says Martone.”  This is why we really need to end the one-party rule in science.  The Darwinists have done nothing to stop the rampant, blatant, out-of-control identity theft (05/02/2003) and credit fraud (08/24/2007) that is damaging the public trust (12/18/2002).(Visited 371 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Modern humans ’44 000 years ago’

first_img31 July 2012 An international team, including scientists from South Africa’s Wits University, has published research that substantially increases the age at which we can trace the emergence of behaviourally modern humans – through direct links to the San people of southern Africa. The question of when and where anatomically modern humans first emerged (Africa, about 200 000 years ago, the evidence indicates) still leaves open the question: when and where did human cultures similar to ours emerge? Until now, most archaeologists believed the oldest traces of San hunter-gatherer culture in southern Africa dated back 10 000 or at most 20 000 years. The new research – published online in the prestigious journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Monday – pushes this much further back in time, to 44 000 years ago.Border Cave, South Africa The research team, comprising scientists from South Africa, France, Italy, Norway, the USA and Britain, drew its conclusions from archaeological material discovered at Border Cave in South Africa. Located in the foothills of the Lebombo Mountains in KwaZulu-Natal province, the site has yielded exceptionally well-preserved organic material. According to Lucinda Backwell, a senior researcher at Wits University’s Bernard Price Institute for Paleontological Research, the dating and analysis of this material “has allowed us to demonstrate that many elements of material culture that characterise the lifestyle of San hunter-gatherers in southern Africa were part of the culture and technology of the inhabitants of this site 44 000 years ago.” Backwell said in a statement on Monday that the team’s results had shown without a doubt that, at around 44 000 years ago, the people at Border Cave were using digging sticks weighted with perforated stones, like those traditionally used by the San.Earliest evidence of use of poison, beeswax “They adorned themselves with ostrich egg and marine shell beads, and notched bones for notational purposes,” said Backwell. “They fashioned fine bone points for use as awls and poisoned arrowheads. One point is decorated with a spiral groove filled with red ochre, which closely parallels similar marks that San make to identify their arrowheads when hunting.” According to the researchers, chemical analysis of residues on a wooden stick decorated with incisions reveals that, like San objects used for the same purpose, it was used to hold and carry a poison-containing ricinoleic acid found in castor beans. This represents the earliest evidence for the use of poison. A lump of beeswax, mixed with the resin of toxic Euphorbia, and possibly egg, was wrapped in vegetal fibres made from the inner bark of a woody plant. “This complex compound used for hafting arrowheads or tools, directly dated to 40 000 years ago, is the oldest known evidence of the use of beeswax,” said Backwell. Warthog tusks were shaped into awls and possibly spear heads. The use of small pieces of stone to arm hunting weapons was confirmed by the discovery of resin residue still adhering to some of the tools, which chemical analysis identified as a suberin (waxy substance) produced from the sap of Podocarpus (yellowwood) trees. The study of stone tools discovered in the same archaeological layers as the organic remains, and from older deposits, showed a gradual evolution in stone tool technology, the researchers found. Organic artifacts ‘appeared relatively abruptly’ “Organic artifacts, unambiguously reminiscent of San material culture, appear relatively abruptly, highlighting an apparent mismatch in rates of cultural change. “This finding supports the view that what we perceive today as ‘modern behaviour’ is the result of non-linear trajectories that may be better understood when documented at a regional scale.” The research team, led by Francesco d’Errico, director of research at the French National Research Centre, published its findings in the articles: “Early evidence of San material culture represented by organic artifacts from Border Cave, South Africa”. The team comprised d’Errico, Backwell, Paola Villa, Ilaria Degano, Jeannette Luceiko, Marion Bamford – a palaeobotanist also from the Bernard Price Institute – Thomas Higham, Maria Perla Colombini, and Peter Beaumont. A second article, “Border Cave and the Beginning of the Later Stone Age in South Africa”, was also published on Monday. The authors were Paola Villa, Sylvain Soriano, Tsenka Tsanova, Ilaria Degano, Thomas Higham, Francesco d’Errico, Lucinda Backwell, Jeannette Luceiko, Maria Perla Colombini and Peter Beaumont. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Afridi is Irresponsible

first_imgZaheer AbbasI don’t see Pakistan winning this World Cup. It’s not at all a strong team. Pakistan have only two good batsmen-Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq. If these two fail in a match, there is no one to navigate the team out of a crisis. Younis Khan is an experienced player and knows how to play according to the situation. Though he started playing cricket at the international level very late-at the age of 27-Misbah has been improving with every game. What has impressed me most is his effort to spend maximum time at the crease.Our bowling has obviously lost the sheen. The team can’t depend on Shoaib Akhtar as he is not 100 per cent fit. He is limping and can break down any moment. There is no immediate replacement for Akhtar. It’s heartening to see him taking wickets but the team clearly misses the services of Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir who have had to sit out of the tournament due to their involvement in the spot fixing scam. Umar Gul has to be consistent and Abdur Razzaq can be effective only on fast wickets. I would also want to see Razzaq bat ahead of captain Shahid Afridi. Razzaq has won us several matches coming at No.6.Misbah-ul-HaqThe team is winning under Afridi but only a crisis will expose how good he is as a captain. He should bat only during slog overs as he doesn’t take responsibility. He wants to hit every ball for a six and doesn’t play according to the situation. He is now too old to change his style, so he should come out to bat only in the last six or seven overs. He should learn from Indian captain M.S. Dhoni. Dhoni was a pinch-hitter earlier, but ever since he became captain, he doesn’t throw his wicket.The Pakistan team is also one of the worst fielding sides in the tournament. They have to improve in this department quickly. Only then can the team hope to reach, at least, the semi-finals.advertisementZaheer Abbas is a former batsman of Pakistan. He spoke to Kaushik Deka. PITCH REPORT”There is pressure if you win, pressure if you lose. I would have told you the exact figure if I had a machine to measure it.”M.S. Dhoni, Indian captainWords WorthJournalists have deleted Tony Greig ‘s number from their phonebooks. The 6´´6´- tall English commentator has sent a letter to ESPN Star Sports asking for more money if he has to express his “valuable” views on the World Cup. He has already been paid over Rs 20 lakh by the channel for his services as a commentator. “If I have to open my mouth except for eating, you will have to pay for it,” Greig wrote.The SoothsayerAhead of the India vs England match at Bangalore on February 27, Shane Warne predicted on Twitter that the game would be a tie. Since then bookies across the globe are trying to get his number on speed dial. “Before you think there was something untoward regarding the prediction of a tie, I thought it was going to be a cracker-it was tongue-in-cheek, but right,” he tweeted again. Warnie, you are the new Octopus.last_img read more

Jos Buttler ‘feared the worst’ after hitting Sri Lankan fielder in warm-up game

first_imgEngland wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler was scared after his powerful pull shot hit Sri Lankan player Pathum Nissanka on the helmet on the second day of the warm-up match against Sri Lankan Board President’s XI on Wednesday.Nissanka was struck at the top of his helmet while he was fielding at short leg. For around 15 minutes of the match, medics from both teams were treating Nissanka on the ground.However, he was then placed on a stretcher while a neck brace was also put in place as he was carried off the ground.Buttler expressed that he “feared the worst” when his shot hit Nissanka on the helmet and he was worried straightaway.”You always fear the worst, I think. I hit it pretty hard and hit him flush so it was a big worry straight away,” Buttler told reporters at the Nondescripts Cricket Club ground.The incident for many revived memories of the on-field injury suffered by Australian batsman Phillip Hughes in 2014 which proved fatal, but Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) confirmed Nissanka was out of danger after an MRI scan.Pathum Nissanka, who was playing for the Board XI in the 1st practice game vs England, was hospitalized this evening, after he was hit on the helmet, while fielding at the Short Leg. MRI scan showed that the player is out of danger. https://t.co/CW0myHCiuj pic.twitter.com/GaHfvw9BQsSri Lanka Cricket (@OfficialSLC) October 31, 2018However, the 20-year-old would remain in hospital for 24 hours on observation, SLC added.advertisement”When he went down you are hoping for the best. The doctors and physios ran out and gave great care straight away. You don’t mean to cause injury but it’s a real unfortunate accident,” Buttler added.Earlier on Wednesday, even Ben Stokes got hurt and retired hurt, only to return to bat after the tea break.Stokes was struck near the left elbow as he attempted a pull shot. Stokes continued batting for some time but decided to retire hurt eventually. England had said that Stokes’s elbow was just bruised and he was expected to return to bat, which he did.The two-day practice match between England and Sri Lankan Board President’s XI ended in a draw after 365/7 in 90 overs, following Sri Lankan innings where they declared after scoring 392/9.England next head to Galle, which will host the first match of the three-Test series between the tourists and Sri Lanka from November 6.(With Reuters inputs)last_img read more

Christy Turlington Burns To Join March For Moms On Sunday

first_imgChristy Turlington Burns will join speakers at the MARCH for MOMS on Sunday.Maternal Mortality rates in the U.S. surpass those of any other industrialized nation with women of color dying at four times the rate of white women. One in every three Americans is born through major surgery — twice as many as are medically necessary. At the same time, we have the lowest birth weights, the widest disparities, and the worst paid family leave policies in the developed world.The MARCH for MOMS is a family-friendly event taking place on Sunday, May 6, on the National Mall between 7th-9th street from 1-4 p.m. This main event will bring together policymakers, celebrities, professional leaders and families who have been affected by our broken maternity care system. In addition, there are 50+ sister marches, hosted by ImprovingBirth.org, in communities all over the country.In its second year, the March has grown to include over 40 national partners, including all of the professional stewards of maternal health. The intent is to gather to kick off the first-ever National Maternal Health Awareness week leading up to Mother’s Day. This public demonstration will provide diverse speakers, uniting with one voice, on a national stage, to publicly declare ‘enough’.“Society must step up and assume responsibility to address the current health of moms and babies. Within a few days of this event, the US Senate will vote on one of the most critical bills we are advocating passage of, the Maternal Mortality bill,” said Ginger Breedlove, founding president of March for Moms. “Through this effort, we will amplify the question of whether society as a whole agrees to take action on the fact that US mother’s experience the worst outcomes of all high-income country’s in the world.”To support the rally efforts, March for Moms team will visit Capitol Hill on Tuesday May 8th to speak to policy makers about the essential need for significant focus and funding on maternal health issues. Learn more about active legislation pertaining to these issues.For event details and a full list of speakers please click here.last_img read more

New accord between Ontario and First Nations may be step towards selfgovernance

first_imgAPTN National NewsThere was a new deal struck Monday between the Chiefs of Ontario and the province.The hope is it will lead to a stronger working relationship between First Nations and the provincial government.APTN’s Wayne Rivers reports it’s being perceived as an important step in the fight to assert First Nation self-governance in Ontario.last_img