Star retains top spot after thumping of Meralco

first_imgFor Ina, portraying a zombie is like an ‘out-of-body experience’ PBA IMAGESStar took sole possession of the first seed after clobbering Meralco, 108-90, in a matchup of league leaders in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The Hotshots remained the owner of the top spot with an 8-2 card while the Bolts careened to third place with a 7-3 record, tied with TnT, behind San Miguel and Ginebra that both have 6-2 slates.ADVERTISEMENT Rollins takes pride in indie origin, eyes Lesnar, Styles bouts Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ 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 Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Gerald: Just because I’ve been bashed doesn’t mean I’d stop working Duterte’s ‘soft heart’ could save ABS-CBN, says election lawyer Swing Out Sister back to PH this April China reports 17 new cases in viral pneumonia outbreak End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend “Proper mindset and mental toughness is very important, and we talked about that we are the no.1 in defense and they’re the no.2 team,” said Victolero. “I’m very happy with the result, we played 48 minutes of Star Hotshots basketball with proper defense and we did a good hob on [Alexander] Stepheson.”Meralco’s import managed just nine points on 4-of-7 shooting and turned the ball over six times.Ricardo Ratliffe led the Hotshots with 32 points, 13 rebounds, two steals, and two blocks while Paul Lee added 16 points.Chris Newsome filled the stat sheets for Meralco as he put up 25 points, seven rebounds, and eight assists.ADVERTISEMENT Star, known as the best defensive team in the conference holding down opponents to 84.1 points a game, proved once more its acumen when it prevented the Bolts from scoring for more than seven minutes into the fourth.A 13-0 run opened up the period for the Hotshots with Jio Jalalon capping it off with a couple of free throws with 5:15 left to give Star a 94-75 lead.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnSPORTSBreak new groundKelly Nabong was the first Bolt to score in the final quarter with a jumper at the 5:02 mark to stop the bleeding, 94-77, but it hardly mattered at the Hotshots were already in full control.Star head coach Chito Victolero knew their matchup against Meralco would boil down to defense since the Bolts are the second-best defensive team allowing just 87 points a game. LATEST STORIES More Taal volcanic quakes recorded despite weaker eruptions Trump’s impeachment defense, prosecutors dig in MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

Ambris, Warrican back for India tour

first_imgST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC): Left-arm spinner Jomel Warrican and opening batsman Sunil Ambris have made their return to the West Indies team, having been named in a 15-man squad to tour India in October and November. The duo has been selected to replace fast-bowler Miguel Cummins and seasoned opener Devon Smith, who both had disappointing performances in the recently concluded series against Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. During the month-long tour, the regional team will play two Test matches, five One Day Internationals and three T20 matches. Warrican last played for the senior squad in 2016 when the Windies toured Australia. Jomel Warrican has been named in the West Indies squad for the first time in over two years. The 26-year-old Barbadian has played four Tests and has taken 11 wickets, with a best bowling performance of 4-67. Warrican has been recalled following an outstanding series against England Lions in February of this year while representing West Indies ‘A’. During that three-match home series which the Windies ‘A’ won 3-0, Warrican snared 31 wickets, including a best of 8-34, at an average of just 8.96. Ambris, 25, had his short Test career halted after playing just two matches when he sustained a broken hand last December during an ill-fated test debut in New Zealand. In those two matches, he scored just 25 runs and has an average of 8.33. Smith’s exclusion will most likely mean the end of his 15-year international career, in which he failed to live up to his full potential. In 43 Test matches, Smith averages 23.78, with one century and eight half-centuries, while his average of 24.62 in 47 ODIs is only slightly better. The 36-year-old Smith endured a miserable outing against Bangladesh, scoring just 76 runs in the two-match Test series, which the Windies won 2-0. It was an equally disappointing series for Cummins, who took just six wickets in the two Test matches at an average of 13.50. In 13 Test matches, the 27-year-old has taken just 27 wickets at an average of 37.59, while in 11 ODIs, he has nine scalps. SQUAD: Jason Holder (captain), Sunil Ambris, Devendra Bishoo, Kraigg Brathwaite, Roston Chase, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Jahmar Hamilton, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Keemo Paul, Kieran Powell, Kemar Roach, Jomel Warrican.last_img read more

Pragmatic multiracial politics

first_imgWith the funeral rites about to be read over the AFC at the LGE, there are once again calls for a “multiracial” party. Now, what is a “multi-racial” party? Is it one in which the leaders are drawn from all or most of the various racial/ethnic blocs that constitute our polity? Is it one that has members drawn from all the various groups? Do the proportions have to roughly mirror the population, or will any assorted agglomeration (like APNU/AFC) do? Or does it mean that the interests of all the groups must be expressly articulated and represented? Should those interests be subsumed under some notion of a “national” interest? Who defines that “national” interest? And so on.In Guyana, all political parties before ROAR claimed they were “multiracial”. They took special pains to have individuals from the major race groups in their executive, and courted votes from across the spectrum. They constructed “national” manifestos. Yet, when it came to elections, the majority of the people invariably voted for one of the two major parties which were firmly identified with specific ethnic blocs – the PPP with Indians and the PNC with Africans. This even occurred with the carefully crafted “multiracial” AFC in 2011 and 2015. So the question is posed again: “What is an “authentic” multiracial party?”The question harks back to the roots of what constitutes “representation” in our “representative democracy”. The favoured approach from both the old Liberal and Marxist ideologies was the “representation of ideas”. That is, once the interests of the group are articulated, then anyone could “speak” for the group. By constructing “national” platforms in personnel and content, the PPP, the PNC and the AFC claimed to be capable of speaking for “all”. Yet, based on the results of elections, it is obvious in some way that the people were getting “ethnic” signals as to which party better represented their interests.ROAR’s precursor, Jaguar Committee for Democracy’s insertion into Guyanese politics occurred in the immediate pre-1992 years, and the free and fair elections of that year proved its thesis that “multiracial” voting remained the exception in Guyana. At that time, as articulated in our 1990 paper, “For a New Political Culture”, we proposed representative, professionalized, disciplined forces and temporary Shared Governance – segueing into federalism – to address the ethnic concerns over control of state power. If the status quo were retained, our theory predicted ethnic violence, which unfortunately came to pass in 1997 and the following decade.So how do we arrive at “multiracial” politics that can represent all the groups to their satisfaction? We thought it was self-evident that the parties that the various ethnic groups selected via their votes should come together and work on a programme that combined their several platforms. We still believe that this is the way to begin, and then work towards a federal approach, which would need the trust engendered during a period of working together.But a final piece of semantic confusion still remains, in addition to the need for political will. There still remains a distaste by the political parties to acknowledge they are “ethnically” based. The greatest irony is that this acknowledgement, coupled with the acceptance to work together, would result in “multiracial” governance, which, after all, is what they claim to be the goal of their politics. The “multiracial” party was supposed to only be a way-station to the “multiracial” government, wasn’t it?A multiracial/multiethnic party must explicitly articulate the interests of the several constituent groups it purports to represent. This can be done, as in the Democratic party in the US, by having specific “caucuses” for African and Hispanic voters. There is no shame in this, or apologies to be made. It is now conceded that in addition to the old “representation of ideas,” there is the need for “representation by presence”, especially for those who have been excluded or have experienced unique defining experiences. Can’t we at least go this far in Guyana? We have quotas for women representatives.“Representation by presence”, by its operation, has its own liberating potential. There are some who sincerely want to belong to “non-racial” parties, but I do not think we can create ever this unicorn in Guyana. Where has it been created? We have to work with the material we have: politics has to be pragmatic in the philosophical sense of the word.last_img read more

McCaw issues All Blacks rallying call

first_img0Shares0000AUCKLAND, New Zealand, October 22- New Zealand captain Richie McCaw said on Saturday he will stress the opportunity awaiting the All Blacks shortly before they go out to play France in Sunday’s World Cup final here at Eden Park.The All Blacks are strong favourites to end their 24 years of World Cup misery and win their second Webb Ellis Trophy in a rematch of their 1987 triumph over Les Bleus at the same Auckland ground. McCaw was asked what he would tell his players before they run out in front of a capacity 60,000 home crowd, expecting victory over a France side who reached the final despite twice losing in the pool phase, including 37-17 to New Zealand.“It’s an opportunity. There’s absolutely nothing for granted. We’ve given ourselves a chance. Two teams on the start line and it’s making the most of that,” McCaw said.“Everyone, regardless of what happens, knowing that they couldn’t have done any more. Putting everything that you’ve done into action. It’s as simple as that really,” the openside flanker added.“The boys are motivated, they’re excited. But we’re up against a team that will be exactly the same and it’s about doing the job for 80 minutes.”McCaw chided the local media for providing underdogs France with additional motivation, courtesy of a none-too-subtle attack on their wild past.The New Zealand Herald devoted Friday’s front page of its sports section to two articles, one entitled ‘A History of Gallic Brutality’ highlighting several examples of French foul play dating back to the 1960s, and the other ‘Beware the filth of the French’, a column by former All Blacks captain Wayne ‘Buck’ Shelford.“I’ve got no doubt the French are going to play their best game and you blokes (media) have loaded the gun for them,” McCaw said.“They’ve got players who’ve been around for a long time and they understand what it takes to win Test matches and play well and we’re expecting them to be out there doing exactly that.”McCaw underlined his team’s hunger to finally break a run of five tournaments without the World Cup.“We’ve got men who’ve been in situations, they’ve been around a long time and there’s a lot of desire there,” he said.“We’ve got guys that are good enough but that guarantees nothing.“People say who deserves what, but at the end of the day in a final it’s not about who deserves what.“It’s about who goes and plays the best rugby on that stage, in this game, that’s what we’ve got to do.” McCaw said he’d refused to touch the Webb Ellis Cup in the past.“I don’t think you should touch it till you’ve earned it,” he explained.The first All Black to play 100 Tests, a milestone he reached in this tournament, McCaw said he wanted to uphold the tradition of New Zealand captains.“Being captain of the All Blacks, it’s a huge honour, but there’s a lot of responsibility that comes with it,” said the 30-year-old McCaw, the only repeat winner of the International Rugby Board’s player of the year award.“The expectation is that you set the standards that have been forged over a long period of time and I guess I’ve got to, along with the coaches, drive that and you’ve still got to go out and be a top player.“I won’t be around forever but hopefully when I leave one day people will say that all the history has gone before, all the legacies that have been set have been upheld if not raised.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Mourinho defiant despite third consecutive draw

first_imgThe draw is United’s third in a row in the Premier League, following 1-1 results with West Ham and Arsenal at Old Trafford.Speaking to Sky Sports, Mourinho said: “We were the best team by far, but we didn’t win. We had chances for 2-0, we hit the post, then we conceded a goal in the last minute.“We are playing extremely well, even in difficult matches like this, and not getting the results we deserve.”Manchester United have drawn six league matches this season and remain nine points behind fourth-placed Manchester City.Asked if he was concerned by the amount of draws, Mourinho said: “Concerned because we don’t get the results we deserve. When my teams win matches playing a different style of football then what matters is the style of football, not the results.“You have teams in the Premier League playing defensive and counter attack football and getting results. That is phenomenal in your words. When my teams are playing extremely well the results are more important.“I am happy my team is playing really well even in difficult matches. It is a problem we are not getting what we deserve and we have a position in the table that has no relation to the quality we are showing.”Mourinho declined to comment about the penalty decision or the early incident when Marcos Rojo escaped a red card for a two-footed tackle on Idrissa Gueye.-By Sky Sports-0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Mourinho insisted his side were the better team and praised his players for a good performance. PHOTO/Sky SportsMANCHESTER, United Kingdom, Dec 5- Jose Mourinho stressed Manchester United are playing “extremely well” despite being held to a 1-1 draw by Everton on Sunday.Zlatan Ibrahimovic gave United the lead in the 42nd minute, but Everton snatched a point with a late Leighton Baines penalty after Marouane Fellaini fouled Idrissa Gueye.last_img read more

Shift in demographics seen at heart of racial violence

first_imgThe attacks, known as SOM, or Sock On Mexican, are believed by police to be a gang initiation rite for younger members. African-American leaders acknowledge that racial hostility in the city’s Northwest has deepened as the area’s complexion changed in the past 30 years from predominantly black to mostly Latino. Between 1980 and 2000, the Latino population of Pasadena grew from about 18 percent to 33 percent, according to the most recent U.S. Census data. During the same period, the city’s African-American population dwindled from about 18percent to less than 15 percent. “The hostility goes both ways,” said attorney Joe Hopkins, publisher of the Pasadena/San Gabriel Valley Journal, a weekly paper serving the African-American population for 18 years. “A lot of it’s over jobs.” PASADENA – A surge of recent shootings and a stabbing in Northwest Pasadena in early May left two men dead and community leaders reeling. Some believe the violence, which was among a cluster on May 6 and 7 of race-against- race incidents between the area’s largely Latino and African-American residents, are perhaps a symptom of a deeper discontent plaguing the community. The racial dynamics of the crimes Jamal Varcasia, 21, and Tony Walker, 37, both African American, who police say died at the hands of three Latino assailants soon arrested and charged on suspicion of double murder raised questions about the violence, which police described as gang- related. At a large community meeting Wednesday to discuss solutions to the violence, police Chief Bernard Melekian outlined a racially motivated crime trend in 2006 and 2007 in which at least 68 late-night attacks by groups of African- American young men against Latin-American immigrants, usually undocumented and walking alone after finishing work in local restaurants. Many of the area’s entry- level jobs, previously filled by young African Americans, are now taken by Latinos, he said, which Hopkins said can frustrate and ultimately drive young black men into gang life. “It’s another ethnic group benefiting economically from African Americans,” Hopkins said. African Americans line up and spend their money at the local Subway shop or McDonald’s, he said, while Latinos working behind the counter earn money at the usually white-owned franchises. “For whatever reason, these companies prefer to hire Latinos,” he said, “and our kids wind up with no jobs. They internalize the rejection, which becomes frustration. It’s part of the reason they turn to gangs.” Hopkins said the feelings in the Northwest are similar to those leading to the 1968 Watts and 1992 Los Angeles riots, in which he believes Jewish and Asian shop owners took economic advantage of the African-American community. Similar sentiments were repeated by Pasadena NAACP chapter President Joe Brown. “Latinos displacing young blacks has created a great deal of frustration in the community,” he said, “and is the root of many of the challenges that find their ways into the street. Numerous youth have told me that businesses indicate that they prefer someone who is bilingual.” Especially with the summer approaching, the creation of more jobs for all the area’s youth is the solution, Brown said. “It’s very difficult to work next to a person and at the end of the day turn around and gun him down,” Brown said. “You’re just too exhausted.” Latino leaders expressed the importance of fostering unity between the races. “There is a lack of opportunity for all the kids,” said Randy Ertll of El Centro de Accion Social. “Both communities are affected by poverty. It’s important to avoid playing the blame game.” Community leaders and activists should provide accurate information that does not create negative stereotypes for either group, he said. “The challenge is for churches, corporations and city officials to work together to create enough jobs for everyone,” he said. “Thousands of jobs are needed.” Ricardo Cortez, a guidance adviser at Madison Elementary School, said he founded Hombres Unidos to provide men a place to communicate about family, home life, work and other issues. “We’re all surviving together in this crisis,” he said, “whether we want to believe it or not. What we need to do is to unite.” (626) 578-6300, Ext. 4461160Want 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

Health concerns remain

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.But the pull to get back to normal was even stronger. “Sure I’m worried about breathing that stuff up there,” he said. “It’s not cool, but everyone is dying to get back home.” Residents staying in areas with bad air were advised to avoid exerting themselves both indoors and outside. Children and those with heart and respiratory conditions were urged to stay indoors with the windows and doors closed and the air conditioner on. Among the main health threats with fires are fine particles invisible to the naked eye. Those particles can get into the lungs and make breathing an even greater struggle for people with asthma, bronchitis and emphysema. Many schools across Southern California remained closed. Al- though school was in session at the Los Angeles Unified School District, the nation’s largest with more than 708,000 students, children were monitored closely when they went outside. LOS ANGELES – As the wildfires die down and residents return home, lingering dust and soot-laden air is making it difficult for many to breathe even a sigh of relief. Air quality remained poor in the central San Bernardino Mountains and parts of the San Bernardino Valley as well as swaths of Orange and Riverside Counties. In San Diego County, where only one of four major fires was more than 50 percent contained, the air was especially dismal Friday. Satellite pictures still showed a thick haze of smoke over the entire region, affecting schools, events and the health of Southern California residents. Joe Flynn, 48, worried about air quality as he prepared to return home to Ramona, northeast of San Diego, after a stay at Qualcomm Stadium, where thousands of evacuees sought shelter this week. Miles from any of the fires, smoke and dust from surrounding areas continued to hang like a heavy fog over the port city of Long Beach, making the sun appear a deep orange. Late this week a sea breeze pushed some of the polluted air inland improving conditions and finally allowing schoolchildren to venture outside. “Here in California, we’re not accustomed to being inside for too long,” said Chris Eftychiou, spokesman for the Long Beach Unified School District. In Irvine, Velvet Revolver canceled a Friday concert with Alice In Chains at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater because of the bad air. A press release also cited concerns that the hard rock fans’ safety could be compromised with county resources spread so thin. In San Diego, where fires still raged, the UC San Diego Medical Center saw an increase in patients with breathing troubles they believe were related to air pollution, but they didn’t have statis- tics available, said spokeswoman Jackie Carr. However, classes at San Diego State University were scheduled to resume next week, and Mayor Jerry Sanders said the Chargers would play Sunday’s game scheduled at Qualcomm. The stadium can seat more than 70,000 fans. 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

James McCarthy expects to be fit for Republic of Ireland’s Euro 2016 opener

first_img James McCarthy in action for Ireland James McCarthy is confident he will be fit for the Republic of Ireland’s Euro 2016 opener against Sweden after bouncing back from a fitness scare.The 25-year-old midfielder feared the worst when he reported for duty having picked up an injury to the groin and hamstring area in Everton’s final-day victory over Norwich, and alarm bells started ringing when he was unable to train with his team-mates at all ahead of last Friday night’s 1-1 friendly draw with Holland.However, he was eased back into action from Monday after the squad had re-assembled in Cork and has gradually stepped up his work this week to the point where he was able to train with the rest of the group on both Thursday and Friday.Asked if he would be ready to line up against the Swedes at the Stade de France of June 13, McCarthy said: “Yes, I should be fine.“I’ve trained with the team the last couple of days and hopefully now I can step it up. It’s obviously good to be back training again with the squad and hopefully now I can kick on and step up the fitness.”Manager Martin O’Neill has kept his fingers crossed with McCarthy a key member of his team, and his return to fitness will have come as a relief.He initially told the media the player’s injury was a thigh problem, although it has since emerged that was not the case.The midfielder said: “It’s hamstring, groin – it’s a bit of both, to be honest – but as I say, I am back training and delighted to be back with the squad.”McCarthy’s return to the fold has been the one piece of good fitness news for O’Neill this week with the tournament fast approaching.Skipper Robbie Keane and fellow striker Jonathan Walters were both spectators once again at the Fota Island Resort on Friday morning as the rest of the squad went through its paces, both of them nursing calf problems.But Keane took to a mountain bike as his recovery is carefully supervised, although he is not expected to work with the group again until the middle of next week at the earliest, by which time the Republic will have taken up residence at the finals base at Versailles.Ireland will head for France on the back of a first defeat in six matches with a virtual second string side having performed poorly to lose 2-1 to Belarus at Turner’s Cross on Tuesday evening, much to the annoyance of assistant manager Roy Keane.They will do so determined to improve upon their showing Poland four years ago when they returned home having not managed to take a single point from their three games.However, there is little danger of the players being allowed to get ahead of themselves.McCarthy, who ruled himself out of contention for the squad in 2012 after his father was diagnosed with cancer, said: “There’s a massive excitement about the place, but we’ll take it a game at a time and we won’t get too carried away.“Obviously the boss and the likes of Roy and the backroom staff, they know how important it is to not look too far forward.“We have got a tough group, don’t get me wrong, but we’ll take it a game at a time. Each and everyone one of us who is going on the plane and travelling to France, we know it’s going to be tough, but there’s a real excitement about the place and we are looking forward to it.” 1last_img read more

Call-ups earn place on Vipers hockey team

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe joys and headaches of holiday travel: John Phillips“They showed that they could skate at that level in the short period of time we had them, and apparently they liked that style of hockey,” Bruyere said. The Vipers also feature several key returnees, including Antelope Valley resident Chris Gale, their leading scorer from last season, and Paul Hart, last season’s No.1 goalie. “It’s an interesting mix,” Bruyere said. Exhibition: The Vipers defeated the Long Beach Ice Dogs Midget AAA team (18-and-under) 6-1 on Sept.9 in playing in their first competitive situation. VALENCIA – The Valencia Vipers found themselves short-handed late in the 2005-06 hockey season when they turned to their Midget AA (18-and-under) program for help. Santa Clarita residents Kevin Lapp (Saugus High), Anthony Kendryna (Saugus) and Zach Barrett made the most of their opportunities with the Ice Station Valencia-based Junior B hockey team, and they are among 20 players who made this year’s team. The Vipers will open Western States Hockey League play Sept.24 at home against the San Diego Surf. First-year coach and longtime general manager Larry Bruyere said Lapp, Kendryna and Barrett held their own amid a more advanced level where the play is faster and much more physical. The Vipers’ scoring came from six different players. “For our first time out there in a game situation, I was pleased with the speed and overall intensity,” Bruyere said. Joining the club: Former Vipers Shawn Gardner (2004-05) and Tyler Jones (2005-06) will play for College of the Canyons’ club hockey team. Canyons will open its season Sept.29 at home against Cal State Northridge. Referee seminar: The Ice Station will play host to a referee seminar for all levels including introductory Level1 on Sept.30. The seminar is run by the Los Angeles Hockey Officials Association. (661) 267-7802160Want 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

Former President Gerald Ford dies

first_imgGerald R. Ford, who picked up the pieces of Richard Nixon’s scandal-shattered White House as the 38th and only unelected president in America’s history, has died, his wife, Betty, said Tuesday. He was 93. “My family joins me in sharing the difficult news that Gerald Ford, our beloved husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather has passed away at 93 years of age,” Mrs. Ford said in a brief statement issued from her husband’s office in Rancho Mirage. “His life was filled with love of God, his family and his country.” The statement did not say where Ford died or list a cause of death. Ford had battled pneumonia in January and underwent two heart treatments – including an angioplasty – in August at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He was the longest living president, followed by Ronald Reagan, who also died at 93. Ford had been living at his desert home in Rancho Mirage. Even after two women tried separately to kill him, the presidency of Jerry Ford remained open and plain. Not imperial. Not reclusive. And, of greatest satisfaction to a nation numbed by Watergate, not dishonest. Even to millions of Americans who had voted two years earlier for Richard Nixon, the transition to Ford’s leadership was one of the most welcomed in the history of the democratic process – despite the fact that it occurred without an election. After the Watergate ordeal, Americans liked their new president – and first lady Betty, whose candor charmed the country. They liked her for speaking openly about problems of young people, including her own daughter; they admired her for not hiding that she had a mastectomy – in fact, her example caused thousands of women to seek breast examinations. And she remained one of the country’s most admired women even after the Fords left the White House when she was hospitalized in 1978 and admitted to having become addicted to drugs and alcohol she took for painful arthritis and a pinched nerve in her neck. Four years later she founded the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, a substance abuse facility next to Eisenhower Medical Center. Ford slowed down in recent years. He had been hospitalized in August 2000 when he suffered one or more small strokes while attending the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. The following year, he joined former presidents Carter, Bush and Clinton at a memorial service in Washington three days after the Sept. 11 attacks. In June 2004, the four men and their wives joined again at a funeral service in Washington for former President Reagan. But in November 2004, Ford was unable to join the other former presidents at the dedication of the Clinton presidential library in Little Rock, Ark. In January, Ford was hospitalized with pneumonia for 12 days. He wasn’t seen in public until April 23, when President Bush was in town and paid a visit to the Ford home. Bush, Ford and Betty posed for photographers outside the residence before going inside for a private get-together. The intensely private couple declined reporter interview requests and were rarely seen outside their home in Rancho Mirage’s gated Thunderbird Estates, other than to attend worship services at the nearby St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Palm Desert. In a long congressional career in which he rose to be House Republican leader, Ford lit few fires. In the words of Congressional Quarterly, he “built a reputation for being solid, dependable and loyal – a man more comfortable carrying out the programs of others than in initiating things on his own.” When Agnew resigned in a bribery scandal in October 1973, Ford was one of four finalists to succeed him: Texan John Connally, New York’s Nelson Rockefeller and California’s Ronald Reagan. “Personal factors enter into such a decision,” Nixon recalled for a Ford biographer in 1991. I knew all of the final four personally and had great respect for each one of then, but I had known Jerry Ford longer and better than any of the rest. “We had served in Congress together. I had often campaigned for him in his district,” Nixon continued. But Ford had something the others didn’t, he would be easily confirmed by Congress, something that could not be said of Rockefeller, Reagan and Connally. So Ford it was. He became the first vice president appointed under the 25th amendment to the Constitution. On Aug. 9, 1974, after seeing Nixon off to exile, Ford assumed the office. The next morning, he still made his own breakfast and padded to the front door in his pajamas to get the newspaper. Said a ranking Democratic congressman: “Maybe he is a plodder, but right now the advantages of having a plodder in the presidency are enormous.” It was rare that Ford was ever as eloquent as he was for those dramatic moments of his swearing-in at the White House. “My fellow Americans,” he said, “our long national nightmare is over. Our Constitution works. Our great republic is a government of laws and not of men. Here the people rule.” And, true to his reputation as unassuming Jerry, he added: “I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your president by your ballots. So I ask you to confirm me with your prayers.” For Ford, a full term was not to be. He survived an intraparty challenge from Ronald Reagan only to lose to Democrat Jimmy Carter in November. In the campaign, he ignored Carter’s record as governor of Georgia and concentrated on his own achievements as president. Carter won 297 electoral votes to his 240. After Reagan came back to defeat Carter in 1980, the two former presidents became collaborators, working together on joint projects. Even as president, Ford often talked with reporters several times a day. He averaged 200 outside speeches a year as House Republican leader, a pace he kept up as vice president and diminished, seemingly, only slightly as chief executive. He kept speaking after leaving the White House, generally for fees of $15,000 to $20,000. In office, Ford’s living tastes were modest. When he became vice president, he chose to remain in the same Alexandria, Va., home – unpretentious except for a swimming pool – that he shared with his family as a congressman. After leaving the White House, however, he took up residence in the desert resort area of Rancho Mirage, picked up $1 million for his memoir and another $1 million in a five-year NBC television contract, and served on a number of corporate boards. By 1987, he was on eight such boards, at fees up to $30,000 a year, and was consulting for others, at fees up to $100,000. After criticism, he cut back on such activity. At a joint session after becoming president, Ford addressed members of Congress as “my former colleagues” and promised “communication, conciliation, compromise and cooperation.” But his relations with Congress did not always run smoothly. He vetoed 66 bills in his barely two years as president. Congress overturned 12 Ford vetoes, more than for any president since Andrew Johnson. In his memoir, “A Time to Heal,” Ford wrote, “When I was in the Congress myself, I thought it fulfilled its constitutional obligations in a very responsible way, but after I became president, my perspective changed.” Some suggested the pardon was prearranged before Nixon resigned, but Ford, in an unusual appearance before a congressional committee in October 1974, said, “There was no deal, period, under no circumstances.” The committee dropped its investigation. Ford’s standing in the polls dropped dramatically when he pardoned Nixon unconditionally. But an ABC News poll taken in 2002 in connection with the 30th anniversary of the Watergate break-in found that six in 10 said the pardon was the right thing to do. The decision to pardon Nixon won Ford a John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award in 2001, and Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, acknowledging he had criticized Ford at the time, called the pardon “an extraordinary act of courage that historians recognize was truly in the national interest.” While Ford had not sought the job, he came to relish it. He had once told Congress that even if he succeeded Nixon he would not run for president in 1976. Within weeks of taking the oath, he changed his mind. He was undaunted even after the two attempts on his life in September 1975. Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, a 26-year-old follower of Charles Manson, was arrested after she aimed a semiautomatic pistol at Ford on Sept. 5 in Sacramento A Secret Service agent grabbed her and Ford was unhurt. Seventeen days later, Sara Jane Moore, a 45-year-old political activist, was arrested in San Francisco after she fired a gun at the president. Again, Ford was unhurt. Both women are serving life terms in federal prison. Asked at a news conference to recite his accomplishments, Ford replied: “We have restored public confidence in the White House and in the executive branch of government.” As to his failings, he responded, “I will leave that to my opponents. I don’t think there have been many.” Ford spent most of his boyhood in Grand Rapids, Mich. He was born Leslie King on July 14, 1913, in Omaha, Neb. His parents were divorced when he was less than a year old, and his mother returned to her parents in Grand Rapids, where she later married Gerald R. Ford Sr. He adopted the boy and renamed him. Ford played center on the University of Michigan’s 1932 and 1933 national champion football teams. He got professional offers from the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers, but chose to study law at Yale, working his way through as an assistant varsity football coach and freshman boxing coach. Ford got his first exposure to national politics at Yale, working as a volunteer in Wendell L. Willkie’s 1940 Republican campaign for president. After World War II service with the Navy in the Pacific, he went back to practicing law in Grand Rapids and became active in Republican reform politics. Ford beat Rep. Bartel Jonkman by a 2-to-1 margin in the Republican primary and then went on to win the election with 60.5 percent of the vote. He had proposed to Elizabeth Bloomer, a dancer and fashion coordinator, earlier that year, 1948. Ford was the last surviving member of the Warren Commission, which investigated the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963 and concluded that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone assassin. Clifford, an adviser to presidents since Harry Truman, summed up his legacy: “About his brief presidency there is little that can be said. In almost every way, it was a caretaker government trying to bind up the wounds of Watergate and get through the most traumatic act of the Indochina drama. “Ford … was a likable person who deserves credit for accomplishing the one goal that was most important, to reunite the nation after the trauma of Watergate and give us a breathing spell before we picked a new president.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Ford was an accidental president, Nixon’s hand-picked successor, a man of much political experience who had never run on a national ticket. He was as open and straight-forward as Nixon was tightly controlled and conspiratorial. He took office minutes after Nixon resigned in disgrace over the Watergate scandal and flew off into exile and declared “our long national nightmare is over.” But he revived the debate a month later by granting Nixon a pardon for all crimes he committed as president. That single act, it was widely believed, cost Ford election to a term of his own in 1976, but it won praise in later years as a courageous act that allowed the nation to move on. The Vietnam War ended in defeat for the U.S. during his presidency with the fall of Saigon in April 1975. In a speech as the end neared, Ford said: “Today, America can regain the sense of pride that existed before Vietnam. But it cannot be achieved by refighting a war that is finished as far as America is concerned.” Evoking Abraham Lincoln, he said it was time to “look forward to an agenda for the future, to unify, to bind up the nation’s wounds.” Ford also earned a place in the history books as the first unelected vice president, chosen by Nixon to replace Spiro Agnew who also was forced from office by scandal. He was in the White House only 895 days, but he changed it more than it changed him. last_img read more