Canes lose Barrett to headaches but beat Bulls

first_imgStar playmaker Barrett withdrew from the side just before kick-off due to headaches, as the visitors managed a convincing bonus-point victory at Loftus Versfeld.First-half tries from fullback Jordie Barrett, centre Ngani Laumape, South African-born wing Wes Goosen and lock Mark Abbott gave the Hurricanes a 24-13 halftime lead.Hooker Leni Apisai crossed for their only try of the second half.The Bulls, who announced New Zealander John Mitchell as their new coach and executive of rugby on Friday, looked more competitive than in recent weeks, and scored tries through wing Duncan Matthews and loose-forward Nick de Jager.The Hurricanes are second in the New Zealand Conference behind the table topping Crusaders with 10 wins from 12 this season, while the Bulls suffered a ninth defeat of their dismal 2017 campaign.Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd said the source of Barrett’s headaches was still unclear, but he had been withdrawn from the match by the medical team as a precaution.Barrett left the field at halftime during last weekend’s win over the Cheetahs in Wellington, passed a concussion test and had shown no symptoms until the team landed in Johannesburg.Although the team doctor was unsure whether his headaches were due to travel, altitude or humidity, it was decided the day before the match to withdraw him from the Bulls match the day before kick off as a precaution.Barrett had exercised earlier in the week without any issues, Boyd said.A physical second half against the Bulls became something of an arm wrestle as the travel factor began to kick in for the Hurricanes.Ardie Savea departed after a head clash with Black and blindside Vaea Fifita was noticeably effected by cramp as the match wore on.Lock Mark Abbott also appeared to suffer concussion symptoms in this morning’s win over the Bulls, putting him, Barrett and Savea in doubt for their next match against the Western Force in Perth.last_img read more

Suriname rally to stun Guyana in Scotiabank CFU Caribbean Cup

first_img Byers put Antigua ahead in the 43rd minute when he pounced on a ball which rebounded after Puerto Rico’s goalkeeper; Matthew Sanchez failed to hold onto a free-kick from 18 yards. The home side added to their advantage four minutes from regulation time when Smith picked-up a low pass on the edge of the six-yard box to tap home from close range. Playing without their charismatic midfielder Joshua Parker and forward Dexter Blackstock – both based in England – Antigua & Barbuda were more attacking in the second half. However, they failed to hit the back of the net in the early stages of the half, even after scoring opportunities were created. In other CFU third-round matches at the weekend, French Guiana beat St Kitts and Nevis one-nil and Martinique defeated Dominican Republic 2-1. ANTIGUA AHEAD Jaguars found a consolation goal a minute from full time when Lyle, left his goal to head in a corner kick, his first goal for Guyana in his first outing. Meanwhile, Antigua and Barbuda rebounded from a 0-3 thrashing from CuraÁao last week to pull off a two-nil win over Puerto Rico in the third round of the ScotiaBank Men’s Caribbean Cup football match at the Antigua Recreation Ground on the weekend. Goals from striker Peter Byers and substitute Stefan Smith, on either side of the break, fired the Benna Boys to victory and a chance to qualify for the final round of the CFU Cup and a place at next year’s Gold Cup. The Antiguans must now wait on results from the next leg of matches this week to know if they will advance to the next round as the best overall second place finishers. ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC):  An extra time brace from substitute Ivanildo Rozenblad inspired Suriname to a dramatic come-from-behind win over rivals Guyana in the third round of the Scotiabank Men’s Caribbean Cup football match at the Andre Kamperveen Stadium in Paramaribo on the weekend. The Surinamese prevailed 3-2 after 30 minutes of extra time following a one-all deadlock in regulation time. Marcel Barrington put Golden Jaguars ahead five minutes into normal time with a low right-footer from the top of the box. Mitchell Kisoor equalised after capitalising on a blunder in the 12th minute of the second half to setup the gripping extra time contest. Suriname grabbed the lead with two minutes remaining in the first half of extra time when Rozenbald tapped into an open goal after receiving a ball from the left flank. Four minutes into the second period of extra time Rozenbald struck again rifling his second goal past goalkeeper Kai Lyle at the near post. CONSOLATION GOALlast_img read more

JRU snaps two-game skid, downs Letran

first_imgPhoto by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netJose Rizal University turned back Letran, 65-62, in the NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre.The Heavy Bombers survived a scare in the final minutes after their 11-point lead, 61-50, dwindled to just three in the final seven seconds of the game but Jed Mendoza was able to hold fort and stopped JP Calvo until the final buzzer.ADVERTISEMENT JRU improved to 2-2 to snap its two-game losing streak while Letran slipped to 1-2.“When we get to the end game, we cannot commit turnovers or passing mistakes,” said JRU head coach Vergel Meneses. “That’s why Letran was able to come back.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’The Knights were able mount their 13-4 late-game run after pestering the Heavy Bombers for the full 94 feet but time wasn’t on their side.Mendoza led JRU with 17 points, seven rebounds, and four assists while Teytey Teodoro, who missed two crucial free throws with seconds remaining in the game, added 14 points. OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Bong Quinto had a team-high 16 points to lead Letran while Rey Nambatac added 14. View comments 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite McGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendcenter_img Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ Kawhi Leonard, Clippers rally to beat Pelicans MOST READ LeBron James scores 31 points, Lakers beat Rockets LATEST STORIES Indian national gunned down in Camarines Sur Gov’t nixes 2019 SEA Games hosting Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘I’m out!’: PewDiePie releases last video before taking break from YouTubelast_img read more

Medical War in Liberia

first_imgThe Liberian nation is at war again.  The situation is so grave that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf last night declared a 90-day state of emergency.  She said this may require the suspension of certain constitutional liberties.  The Liberian people are bracing themselves to see what direction this might take.     The war this time, fortunately, it is not so much us versus us, even though there is some evidence of that; but particularly  us versus the deadly Ebola virus, which has inflicted a terrible calamity upon the nation and the Mano River basin, resulting in hundreds of deaths and uncontrollably increasing new infections.Just yesterday news broke about a new area under attack, Kakata, one of our most central cities, through which thousands of people pass daily traveling to the central, western and southeastern parts of the country. Kakata is also one of our educational centers, home to the nation’s oldest and leading vocational and technical institution, Booker Washington Institute.  Kakata is also the epicenter of one of the nation’s most important economic activities, the rubber industry, in which tens of thousands of Liberians are employed.  In the past two days four health workers have died and 11 others infected at Kakata’s C.H. Rennie Hospital.  The Health Ministry is relocating the infected to quarantine facilities in Monrovia. We said earlier that there is self-inflicted harm also, evidenced by marauding criminals poisoning wells in various communities, with dangerous chemicals.  The police in Monrovia are in denial of this dangerous new menace, but just as they were issuing a new statement of denial Thursday, reports came in from our Nimba correspondent, Ishmael Menkor, that at two a.m. that same morning a well in a family compound had been burst open by unknown persons and allegedly poisoned.This is a matter that requires the engagement of the entire Joint Security; for there are many places in Margibi County and Monrovia, the nation’s capital, where poisoning activities have been reported.  And now Ganta.Our most serious challenge at this time, however, is the combat against the deadly Ebola virus, which has already claimed over 200 lives and hundreds of new infections in country, and over 1000 deaths among Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.  Now Nigeria, where a Liberian official collapsed and died at the Lagos airport, is at risk of the Ebola spread.  The official had been in contact with his Ebola-sick sister before he, ignoring the advice of many, boarded a plane to Nigeria for a meeting.He ended up carrying this deadly disease to Africa’s most populous country.  The Lagos nurse who treated him has also reportedly died.President Sirleaf now has to develop and announce to Liberians the new strategies she and her officials are putting into place for the intensified anti-Ebola battle.  She also now has to explain what she means by the suspension of certain constitutional rights and privileges, for which she must seek legislative approval.  She has to make a strong and carefully crafted case, for this is not the same nation before 1980, when the True Whig Party’s rubber stamp Legislature handed President W.V.S. Tubman each year, as long as he wanted it, Emergency Powers that allowed him to jail anybody at will or take any administrative action he wished. Liberians have since 2006 enjoyed and become accustomed to a new dispensation, made possible by the active reengagement of the 1986 Constitution which President Sirleaf, in keeping with the oaths she took in January 2006 and 2012, respectively, has striven to uphold. Ours is once again a multiparty democracy.  But given the exigencies of the moment, and Ebola uncontrollably spreading, the Legislature may accede to the President’s request for a state of emergency to deal with this extraordinary situation.  But what measures are to be put into place, whether they will be able to arrest the deadly viral spread, and how will the emergency affect the daily lives of citizens and residents, remain to be seen.Health workers are most likely to be among the groups expected to be affected by the emergency.  Since so many of them have stayed away from work for fear of infection, the emergency may force them to report back to duty.  The least GOL can do to ensure their return to duty, is to provide each with full protective gear, food, fluids and everything else that their safety and wellbeing demand.      Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Farmers: Vegetables Farming (Part 2)

first_imgFertilizing the gardenBy Bisi Klah (+231886587547/+231775874301)Reducing Water DemandsMulching is a cultural practice, which can significantly decrease the amount of water that must be added to the soil. Organic mulches themselves hold some water and increase the humidity level around the plant. Shading and the use of windbreaks are other moisture-conserving techniques. Small plants, in particular, should be protected. Air moving across a plant carries away the moisture on the leaf surface, causing the plant to need more water.In very windy areas, the roots often cannot keep up with leaf demands, and plants wilt. Temporary or permanent windbreaks can help tremendously. During those times when cultural practices simply are not enough, when rainfall is sparse and the weather is hot, watering can benefit the garden for higher yields, or may save the garden altogether in severe drought years.Irrigation, when properly used, can benefit the garden in many ways such as aiding in seed emergence, reducing soil crusting, improving germination and plant stand, as well as reducing wilting and checking of growth in transplants. Irrigation also increases fruit size of tomato, cucumber, and melon and prevents premature ripening of peas, beans, and sweet corn. It also maintains uniform growth and improves the quality and yields of most crops.Irrigation MethodsIn an integrated system, it is not only ordinary water that is used for irrigation. It is to be noted that in this system, there is usually no septic tanks constructed within the place. All the sewage systems are channeled into basins about four feet deep. Aquatic plants like water hyacinth, execrate are planted in the basins to purify the used water.These basins make sure that smells are perceived in the whole place. The basins are constructed in such a way that the recycled water can pour into another basin where they are collected for use in watering the farms. Water can also be collected straight from the fist basin for this purpose. The watering of the plants can be done manually, if there is enough labor depending on the area in question. Otherwise, the mechanized system of irrigation can be used if the machines and other implements needed for this are available.The things needed include: pumping machine, rubber water pipes, constructed for this purpose. They have iron joints, which make it possible to link them together, extend them as far as possible at the same time, and meander to all the corners. There are also irrigation taps that rotate at 360 degrees, watering the plants as they rotate. First of all, the rubber pipes are connected along the line of the plants to be watered. One of the ends is attached to the machine while the proper end is put into the tank where aquatic plants are used to recycle the water to be used. The machine is primed with water before it is started. Then, the motor is turned on and left at the slow turning point until it warms up. When it does, the speed of the machine is increased to the maximum. At this point, water comes out from the tap ends and waters the plants.The amount of fertilizer to apply to a garden depends on the natural fertility of the soil, the amount of organic matter present, the type of fertilizer used, and the crop being grown. The best way to determine fertilizer needs is to have the soil tested by testing laboratories through an agricultural research institute.Apart from the chemical fertilizer that is used to increase soil fertility, organic materials are the form of manure which are used in an integrated farm. The waste products from the animal farm, the poultry and some from abattoirs can be recycled into very effective manure for the vegetable gardens. One fact that is notable is that these materials are not just used as they are. This is because they are usually hot because of their acidic and carbon content. These are removed through the means of organic transformation. That is to say that there is a process whereby the ordinary wastes are transformed into viable manure. This process has to do with organized deposition of these wastes in an area mapped out for this purpose, which has to be under some kind of shade.Pest control through natural/biological productionsThe insecticide produced naturally and even chemically is used to chase insects so they don’t destroy the plants. That is to say that the solution does not attack the plants not make them harmful to the body, but attacks the insects that harm the plants and hamper their growth. It is advised that the spraying be done frequently; up to two to three times a week. It can even be more depending on the resistant capacity of the insects.Biological solutions are used in a small area. If the farm is very big, it is better to sue a mixture of both biological and chemical solutions for optimum effectiveness. If the prescription for the chemical solution is one liter, half of each can be used. The solution realized from mixture is usually very strong. Through this, too, the quantity of the chemical solution of what can be called imported product is limited.The first formula for natural solution is ½ kilogram of neem plus 10 liters of water. This solution is left for twenty-four hours. It is then filtered so that the grains of neem used can be removed. The water collected is then used to spray on the plants. The second formula solution is 11/2 kg of neem leaves plus 10 liters of water. The leaves and water is boiled for ten minutes. This solution must stay for 24 hours then it is filtered and used. The third formula solution is 1kg of dry tobacco leaves plus ½ liter of kerosene and add 200g of soap without perfume. This has to be dissolved in 10 liters of water.To have concentrated solution, put the tobacco in 10 liters of water and boil for ten minutes. This is left for 24 hours and then you filter. After this, the kerosene is added together with the soap, which has to be cut into small pieces. Lastly, a medium size peak milk cup full of grounded pepper is added. It is worth noting at this juncture that the solution is very delicate. Before usage, it has to be sampled on few leaves so that its strength or concentration can be ascertained. If it is too strong, detectable from the condition of the leaves on which the sampling is done, some more water is added and the trial spray is repeated. When it is okay, it is then used. The spray must be discontinued two weeks before the leaves are harvested for eating. Some chemical solutions that can be used include: Konkani, Dursban 4EC and Malathion.The precaution for the usage of the solution is that hand-gloves must be used and you have to close your nose to avoid inhaling the odor. You must wear boots at all time. Use some glasses to cover your eyes. When you are spraying the insecticide, you must go against the wind. That means that you try as much as possible not to inhale the odor.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Something is “wrong” with persons who sexually molest children – DPP

first_imgWith Guyana recording one of the highest numbers of rape cases in the Caribbean, Director of Public Prosecutions, Shalimar Ali-Hack on Friday posited that people who sexually molest children suffer from mental illnesses.DPP, Shalimar Ali-HackThis statement was made at the American University of Peace’s Eight Convocation ceremony, which was held at Pegasus Hotel, Georgetown.“There are a lot of cases that come in especially sexual offences, and we are overwhelmed by the number of cases. Without any knowledge, it seems to me it is only natural that something is wrong with people to be interfering with children,” she said.Moreover, she added that with the number of rape cases that are on the rise in Guyana, psychologists are very much needed.“Your study is in demand and you will have a lot of work to do, I urge you to be fair and confidential, to be impartial in your application and in your handling of your clients”, she told the students.Ali-Hack also said that the issue of child molestation is not only happening in Guyana, but it is also evident around the world.“This is happening on a very regular basis throughout society, it cuts across all religions, class, creed, that you can think of. It has no borders, it has no boundaries”, she vocalised.Meanwhile, she said that the Guyanese society is always quick to jump to violent reactions, and it is only persons who dwell in our society that can attest to the fact.“I see fathers before me every day and it bothers me, people seem to have so much anger and they have no tolerance, and no patience and they are quick to jump to violent reactions… if you’re living in this society you would realise this”, she added.Nevertheless, the Director urged the new graduates to apply the knowledge they have acquired into the execution of their duties, now that they are about to venture out into the world of work.last_img read more

Taxi driver charged for sexually assaulting 7-year-old girl

first_imgA 30-year-old taxi driver who was hired to transport a 7-year-old girl from school but allegedly diverted to the Jubilee Resort and engaged in sexual activity with her was on Thursday arraigned before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts.Sattish Ramkellawan of Timehri, East Bank Demerara, the taxi driver, was not required to plead to the charge, particulars of which stated that between January 1, 2019 and February 12, 2019 at Timehri, East Bank Demerara, he engaged in sexual activity with a child under the age of 16.The matter was heard in-camera and members of the public and media were asked to exit the courtroom.According to reports, the accused was hired by the child’s parents to transport her home from school, but he allegedly diverted and took the child to the Jubilee Resort, where he allegedly sexually assaulted her.The traumatised child related to her parents what had transpired, and the matter was reported to the Police. The accused was subsequently arrested and charged for the offence.The accused was remanded to prison, and will make his next court appearance on January 13, 2020.last_img read more

Goolsarran scolds Govt over denial of sinking economy

first_img– plugs need for Economics Ministry over SocialCohesion, BusinessFormer Auditor General Anand Goolsarran has scolded the 13-month-old A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Government for its denial of the current ailing state of the country’s economy.Goolsarran said that three per cent growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) did not mean that all was well with the economy.“The Government is in denial that the economy is slowing down, but it is evident,” he stated.Goolsarran indicated that 40 per cent of the youths was unemployed, there was evidence of under-employment, businesses were struggling and there was also the existence of parallel economies.Finance Minister Winston Jordan had affirmed, however, that the economy was in good shape by presenting statistics and explanations in support of the Government’s defence. He had cited the commendation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Guyana’s economic growth, which is projected to be four per cent this year.Jordan also contended that the IMF report should not be doubted or challenged, since it was already established that the body was neutral. “IMF economists would visit a country and scrutinise its economic and financial developments before discussing policies within the two areas with the Government and the Central Bank officials,” he noted.He also stated that the Government was not idle in delivering since its coming into office and presently was engaging the attention of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) to acquire loans for the 2016-2017 period, particularly in the areas of agricultural diversification, infrastructural development and commerce.Ministry of EconomicsThe former Auditor General said the answer to the country’s economic woes could be found, but a number of things must be done, chief among them the establishment of a ministry of economic development and planning.Goolsarran , a transparency advocate, told Guyana Times that economic planning was a prerequisite for any country’s development and given Guyana’s economic status, it made sense for the country to have a ministry of economics.“I don’t see the need for a Ministry of Social Cohesion, or why we should have separated Ministries for Business and Tourism. The question is why a Ministry of Economics was left out by this new Cabinet?” he asked.Although, he was aware that the Finance Ministry had some responsibility for economics, Goolsarran stated that the Finance Minister portfolio was already weighty and the country’s economics would require more attention.Economic planThe former Auditor General emphasised the need for an economic plan to take the country forward.“Guyana urgently needs an economic plan especially in our current economic situation,” Goolsarran remarked.He noted that this could be achieved with an economic planning entity such as the ministry of economics, providing that the body was separate and distinct.Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo had called on the Government to produce an economic plan, while lambasting it for not having any plans to develop the economy.Jagdeo, reflecting on the coalition Government’s first anniversary back in May, had said that after one year of the APNU/AFC in office, Guyanese were worse off.He had stated that he noticed a “lack of direction” from the Government, arguing that the economy was “fixable”, but the Government had no vision about where it was heading.last_img read more

Transfer rumours and paper review – Tuesday, December 30

first_imgHere’s the top transfer-related stories in Tuesday’s newspapers…Manchester United are planning to lure Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos to Old Trafford next summer. Louis van Gaal is looking to strengthen his defensive options and Ramos is his top target, with United ready to offer the Spain star £105,000-a-week after tax to secure his signature. (Daily Star)Liverpool are ahead of Tottenham in the race to sign Saido Berahino. West Brom value the striker at £25million but the Reds are hopeful of negotiating a lower fee. (Daily Mail)Atletico Madrid are willing to sell Brazilian defender Joao Miranda in January – and that has put Manchester City on red alert. (Daily Mirror)Harry Redknapp has sealed a deal to take West Ham forward Mauro Zarate to Queens Park Rangers on loan until the end of the season. (Daily Mirror)Arsenal striker Yaya Sanogo is set to move to French outfit Bordeaux on loan for the rest of the season. (Daily Star)Edinson Cavani has not been included in Paris Saint-Germain’s winter training camp in Marrakech, boosting Arsenal’s hopes of concluding a January deal. (Daily Express)Newcastle’s French international midfielder Moussa Sissoko will turn down a move to Arsenal and stay at St James’ Park. (The Sun)And here’s the latest headlines…Alan Irvine sacked as West Brom bossCrystal Palace given permission to talk to Newcastle boss PardewSunderland interested in former West Ham strikerBurnley target labelled ‘unsellable’Striker’s Liverpool nightmare to end? Sampdoria president reveals his dream signingMan United and Southampton face fight for Dutch starTottenham face defeat in wonderkid chase as Roma swoopLiverpool lining up cut-price deal for Lavezzi? Reds linked with £8m move for PSG forwardArsenal transfer blow: Pedro will NOT quit Barcelona for Gunnerslast_img read more

Slowing economy keeps state on `bleeding edge’

first_imgThat said, other segments of the economy are still ticking along fairly well, albeit with a slump in retail sales attributed to the decline of housing-related purchases and a sense of foreboding among consumers that dampens their appetite for cars and other goods. “California is doing both better and worse than the United States,” says the Santa Barbara forecast, released last week. “The state is bearing far more of its share of the slowdown in residential real estate. At the same time, California’s economic growth has recently exceeded that of the United States.” The Santa Barbara analysis is similar in tone to those of other economic authorities, such as UCLA’s Anderson Forecast and the California Department of Finance. UCLA economist Ryan Ratcliff said, “California is in for at least another year of economic doldrums, with rising unemployment, weak job growth and a slowdown in all broad indicators.” However, Ratcliff added, “Without the emergence of a second source of weakness in the economy or a significant worsening of the real estate sector beyond what’s already being forecast, California will not sink into a recession.” When the end of the Cold War reduced defense spending in the early 1990s, Southern California’s aerospace industry, which had profited handsomely from the nearly half-century-long arms race, was hit hard, with hundreds of thousands of high-paying jobs evaporating. A decade later, the dot-com bubble burst and once again it was California, especially the San Francisco Bay Area, that took the brunt as countless technology firms went under and billions in paper wealth vaporized. Bill Watkins, who runs the University of California, Santa Barbara, Economic Forecast Project, puts it this way: “California is always on the bleeding edge.” He and other economists are now wondering whether the implosion of the housing industry, another economic tsunami in California, will have a similar impact. Three-fourths of the nation’s foreclosure actions filed by lenders in August were in California, and the state has accounted for 40 percent of the nation’s decline in home sales since 2005. California, moreover, is the home of big-scale lenders, such as Countrywide, whose subprime mortgages have backfired. The Department of Finance, meanwhile, says in its most recent bulletin that “economic indicators were disappointing in July, a reflection of the worsening of the housing sector downturn. Payroll employment dropped, the state’s unemployment rate rose slightly, existing home sales slowed, and residential construction remained sluggish.” So there we have it – a slowdown of uncertain dimensions but stopping short of a genuine recession, coupled with what Watkins calls “a ton of uncertainty.” And not surprisingly it’s filtering into voters’ consciousnesses, as a recent poll by the Public Policy Institute of California indicates. “A dark mood is settling over the Golden State as pessimism about California’s economic conditions hits its highest point since 2003,” the institute says in its analysis. “Housing woes and the spectacle of this summer’s budget battle are taking their toll on residents’ economic outlook – and affecting everything from trust in government to approval ratings of state and federal leaders.” The slowdown and the public’s darkening mood about it have potentially major effects on political policy. Even a modest slump could have devastating effects on a state budget that’s already running big deficits, and voters may be less likely to approve the financial issues that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers want to place on next year’s ballot – including taxes for expanding health care and perhaps education and water and other infrastructure bonds. Dan Walters is a columnist for The Sacramento Bee. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more