Federal Prison Reform Task Force Gleans Lessons From Georgia

first_img ‘It’s Fractured’: Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan On Healing Republican Party Legal Advocate Discusses Medical Abuse At Shut Down Georgia ICE Facility For Whom The Bell Rings Share 0:51A federal group mandated to make recommendations to Congress about reforming the nation’s prison system is in Georgia this week, seeking input from Georgia’s own criminal justice reforms. On Tuesday, the Charles Colson Task Force on Federal Corrections, which was created by Congress, heard from state leaders about how they’ve implemented reforms beginning in 2011. Under Gov. Nathan Deal, the state began a series of overhauls to reduce the state’s prison population with state legislative approval. The reforms have focused on getting nonviolent offenders out of prison and on helping ex-prisoners transition into society.Thomas Worthy, co-chair of Georgia’s Council on Criminal Justice Reform, told the visiting task force that it’s possible to build political consensus on the issue. “We have shown time and time again down here in Georgia that this issue isn’t going to get you beat,” Worthy said. “This is not something that Washington needs to be afraid of from a political standpoint.”Worthy and his co-chair , Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Michael Boggs, said the issue has crossed political lines by being framed as being a moral, money-saving and public safety issue. Members of the task force commended the state for being a model in its bipartisan efforts. “What is really impressive by this presentation is the executive and legislative leadership that’s come together to reach out and implement it,” said Alan Mollohan, the task force vice chair and former congressman from West Virginia.The task force will present its findings in a report and recommendations to Congress, the attorney general and the president early next year. Related Stories 0:51 | Play story Add to My ListIn My List last_img read more


Kraft’s Korner: 10 NASCAR Fantasy Live rules to set rosters by

first_imgRELATED: Sign up for NASCAR Fantasy Live today! | How the new game worksWith the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season fast approaching, we have already run through the enhancements and changes to this year’s NASCAR Fantasy Live game.How should that impact your fantasy roster in terms of who to play and who to sit? Leagues are open to sign up and you can set your lineup picks today!NASCAR.com fantasy expert RJ Kraft has some guidelines for you to keep in mind while setting your fantasy roster on a weekly basis. Will these guidelines guarantee you league superiority? Hopefully, but not every situation is as cut and dried as “leave the gun, take the cannolis.”On a weekly basis, Fantasy Fastlane will provide insight into each race weekend. But before we get into that, having a code or guidelines can be helpful in building out a roster, especially at the start of the year, so here are 10 helpful nuggets for playing.1. Have a routine and stick with itWhen I am plotting out my fantasy roster for the week, I typically set it initially on Tuesday when the week changes over. And then circle back after qualifying and practices while evaluating 10-lap averages to set my final roster and bonus picks. You don’t have to do it that way, but the point is to get into a pattern — based on that weekend’s particular schedule — where setting your roster and making changes becomes a habit. Also of note, rosters do not carry over week to week, so it’s important to get into the game to set it.Chris Graythen | Getty Images2. Scripting out certain driver’s usage is highly advisableWith a cap on using drivers for 10 races, owners need to be judicious about how certain drivers — namely the big point scorers are used. For example, you want to devise your strategy around making sure that 1.5-mile beast (and defending series champ) Martin Truex Jr. is available to you for all tracks of that particular length in the first 26 races — FYI, that’s seven races (eight if you want to throw Darlington in there, which is close enough in length). Following that logic, you’d want to make sure to have Kyle Larson at the three 2-mile races. And in the case of Kyle Busch who’s good nearly everywhere, it’s advisable to know which tracks to shy away from with him — Talladega, Michigan and Daytona.3. Be prepared to veer from the scriptWhile we like scripting out driver usage, sometimes life is like a Bruce Springsteen concert where the set list changes on the fly and ad-libbing and audibles are called for. A driver might start to get on a roll and you need to adjust to take advantage of that. With the number of young drivers coming into the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series ranks in the past few years, it will be difficult to rely on track history. Owners will need to rely on the eye test, lap times, speeds and more. Doing that will require being willing to drop the script like it’s hot in favor of who looks particularly strong over a consistent stretch.4. Restrictor-plate races are unpredictableThe draft is known as the great equalizer and could really jumble up the fields at Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway. In addition to that, pack racing tends to lead to sizable wrecks that wreak havoc on your lineup (thankfully in 2018 you will have a garage driver – more on that in a bit). Parity abounds in these races: Twenty-four different drivers notched top 10s in the four plate races in 2017. Among the drivers not to use: Martin Truex Jr., Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson. The point being — while there are exceptions to this rule (Brad Keselowski) — it is prudent not to burn one of the expected top drivers’ races on a restrictor-plate event.5. Ford power needs to be a priority at Daytona and TalladegaFord swept the restrictor-plate races with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. winning twice, while Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski each won once. Going back to the summer Daytona race, Fords have won 11 of the past 14 plate races. The numbers illustrate just how strong the blue oval was at plate tracks in 2017. Ford teams scored 19 of a possible 40 top 10s in these races (47.5 percent); Chevrolet had 16 while Toyota had five. A similar tale can be told with laps led as Ford teams led 353 of a possible 742 circuits (47.5 percent), while Toyota led 198 laps and Chevrolet led 191 laps. Stacking your Daytona and Talladega lineups with Ford drivers has a strong likelihood of paying off so load up on Keselowski, Stenhouse, Joey Logano, Ryan Blaney, Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer and more for these races. Michael McDowell and David Ragan are ideal sleepers for those races.David Becker | Getty Images6. Get ready to go to the garageThis season’s Fantasy Live game features a garage driver. If you play other fantasy sports, consider this your bench for the given race. However, unlike other sports you can dip into the garage mid-race to make a change if you so desire due to performance or if an incident/wreck by one of your starters requires you to make a change to try and gain more points. Given the wealth of young talent with plenty of upside but not much history in the sport’s top series, I am going to plan my garage strategy early on around drivers in that classification since you just don’t what to expect. Think along the lines of Erik Jones, Darrell Wallace Jr., Daniel Suarez, Alex Bowman or William Byron. There is something to be said for going the steady-hand route with a veteran in the garage like Jamie McMurray or Jimmie Johnson. Utilizing the garage play means having your finger on the pulse of what is happening in a race. This is an application that can pay big dividends on your roster over the course of the season.7. Scoring stage points should be a priorityWith the scoring shifting to exactly how drivers earn points in races, stage points should be something fantasy owners target. Stage points were a part of the game last year, but so were laps led, fast laps and place differential. The latter three are no longer part of the scoring, placing an extra premium on getting stage points. Strategy plays can shake up the order in a race, especially at short tracks and plate tracks, but using last year’s stage points totals can also serve as a guide early on in the season.8. Recent results really do matterThe phrase “What have you done for me lately” comes to mind here. I tend to be a bigger believer in what a driver has done in the last three years over career numbers. A great example of this is Martin Truex Jr., especially since that time period coincides with being paired up with crew chief Cole Pearn. A similar example would be Kyle Busch as he has been paired with crew chief Adam Stevens during that same stretch. Two tracks that Busch has been strong at in the past three years — Kansas (one win, 5.2 average finish) and Martinsville (two wins, 2.8 average finish) — are not ones he has necessarily been good at over his whole career. At Martinsville, 813 of his 1,300 laps led have come in the last five races at the short track. Before his last five races at Kansas, Busch’s average finish there was 21.4 and his overall finish is 17.4. If you looked at the overall body of work, you might dismiss the idea. Yet, a closer look at the recent numbers proves why “Rowdy” would be a good play there.MORE: Stats and more with Racing-Reference.info9. Going bonkers for bonus pointsThere are added ways to get bonus points in this year’s game. In addition to selecting the race winner (30 points for correct pick) and winning manufacturer (10 points for correct pick), players can now select a pole winner (five points for correct pick) and Stage 1 and 2 winners (10 points for correct pick). When qualifying is held on Friday of a race weekend, teams typically do a run in qualifying trim at some point in the Friday practice session. Qualifying picks have to be set ahead of the qualifying session as picks should lock about five minutes before it starts. Selecting Stage 1 and Stage 2 winners is far from an exact science, but it’s usually solid reasoning that the cars that look strongest in practice can be expected to be up front in the end.10. The not-so secret sauceIt’s one thing to look at speeds from practice, but those do not tell the full story for the race weekend. 10-lap averages paint a more complete picture of what could be in store for the race. The 10-lap averages are an invaluable fantasy tool to measure longer run speed over 10 consecutive laps of practice. These stats are more frequent for the last two practices and give a solid indication of who are the drivers that should have the speed to be factors in the race. These numbers tend to have little importance at restrictor-plate tracks and carry major value at the intermediate tracks.last_img read more


Make Time for Awe

first_imgThe Atlantic:Jason Silva is a self-described epiphany junkie. He recently enthused to me about how some movies, for example, manage to capture attention and create a complete, immersive transformation for the viewer.In his “Shots of Awe” YouTube series, Silva wants to interrupt your mundane existence with “philosophical espresso shots” designed to inspire you to live to the fullest.It’s easy to get swept away by Silva’s vision of the future: a revolutionary convergence of biotechnology, nanotechnology, and artificial intelligence. He considers awe to be a pivotal ingredient in making ideas resonate. In his three-minute clips, he hardly takes a breath as he spouts rousing optimism over digitally animated film.He may be onto something. A new study published in the journal Psychological Science shows there are residual health benefits to having your mind blown.“People increasingly report feeling time-starved, which exacts a toll on health and well-being,” states the study.Read the whole story: The Atlantic More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more


Narine leads Wellman Masters to title

first_imgRamesh Narine spurred Mike’s Wellman to the Masters’ Over-40 title while Grill Masters beat Regal All-Stars to take the Open title in the annual Republic Cup last Sunday at the Everest Cricket Club ground. In the championship match, Narine stroked 52 (3×6; 5×4) to setup Wellman Masters’ five-wicket victory with three balls to spare in fading light.Set 164 to win from their 20 overs, the champions got useful knocks from skipper Wayne Jones and opener Ian Ramdeen who both weighed in with 28 runs each while Greg De Franca and Nandram Samlall got them over the rope.Laurie Singh gave Fed-Up Masters an excellent start with the ball, sending back openers Ramdeen and Eon Lovell (01) very early. However, Narine and Jones consolidated and almost to put the run chase to bed before disaster struck. The dismissals of the two left-handers and Lloyd Ruplall (05) brought the opposition back into the game.With 24 needed from 12 balls and five wickets in hand, Nandram and De Franca swung for the fences and cashed in on the small outfield. De Franca finished with 12 (2×4) from four balls and Samlall 21 (3×4).Singh finished with 3 for 36. Earlier, after being sent in; Fed-Up Master’s total of 163/7 was built around 57 from captain Mohamed Rafeek and 47 from Troy Lewis.Man of the Match, Narine claimed 1-32 (4), Latchman Kallicharran 2-19 (4) and Imtiaz Mohamed 2-36 (4).On their way to the final, Fed-Up Masters (158-6) beat Fishermen Masters (104 all out) by 54 runs while Mike’s Wellman (179/3) beat Regal Masters (139/9) by 40 runs. Narine blasted an unbeaten 83 from 37 balls (10×6; 2×4) and picked up 4 for 26 with the ball to crown a good day at the office. In the All-Star final, Richard Latif stole the show to hand Grill Masters an easy 17-run victory over the star-studded Regal All Stars.Grill Masters lost Balram Samaroo, caught behind off Suraj Boodhoo without scoring at 8-1.Latif then joined opener Chien Gittens and the pair took the score to 124-2 in the 15th over when Gittens lost his leg stump  to a fired up Shilendra Ramnauth for 48 (6×4; 1×6). Latif and David Lucknauth added 65 runs from 33 balls for the third wicket. Lucknauth finished on 20 from 10 balls while Latif who brought up his 100 in the 19th over was undone off the final ball of the innings for 103. In all, he faced 63 balls and hit seven fours and five sixes as the Grill Masters finished on a commanding 189 for 3 from their 20 overs. Boodhoo (1-17), Sachin Singh (1-20) and Ramnauth (1-22) finished with one wicket each.In reply, Regal All-Stars were off to a positive start with Sachin Singh (23) and Patrick Rooplall (11) putting on 29 for the first wicket from 3.1 overs. However, after they were dismissed within the space of three overs. the rest of the batting fell away except for Sewchand Budhu who made 22.Bowling for Grill Masters Chandrashekal Arjune claimed 3 for 33, Gittens 2 for 16 and Latif 2-25. The annual tournament was organized by the Georgetown Softball Cricket League Inc (GSCL) and was sponsored by Regal Stationery and Computer Centre and Regal Sport of Seaforth Street Campbellville. This year’s tournament was used as valuable practice ahead of the Florida Cup which is scheduled for April 12 to 14 in Fort Lauderdale, USA.last_img read more