Afternoon Brief, February 17

first_imgReddIt TAGSAncient Peaks WineryArgentinaAustraliaBritish ColumbiaChateau Ste MichelleCrowdfundingDirect ShippingIndiaNew ZealandPaso RoblesPaso Robles CAB CollectivePremier Napa ValleySouth AfricaUnited KingdomVineyard ManagementVintage 99 LabelVirginiaWashingtonWine LawZoho Corp Subscribe to the Afternoon Brief Home Afternoon Brief Afternoon Brief, February 17Afternoon BriefVideoAfternoon Brief, February 17By Editor – February 17, 2015 24 0 Previous articleProvence Wine Council to Unveil its 2014 Vintage at “Provence in the City” EventsNext articleJosh Ratner Selected To Lead Northeast Sales Division For Hess Family Wine Estates Editor Trending Story:Hundreds of Wine Industry Guests Expected for Premiere Napa Valley WeekMore than 700 top wine trade and media guests from around the world are gathering in Napa Valley for a week of educational events and professional tastings organized by the Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) nonprofit trade association…Today’s News:Top U.S. Labor Official Arrives as West Coast Ports Back UpU.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez arrived in San Francisco, where months-long negotiations between the dockworkers union and a maritime association of companies have come to a halt…British Columbia wine sales top $1 billion CAD for first time in 2014B.C. wine sales topped $1 billion CAD in 2014 for the first time and that spending is expected to increase, according to an international alcohol research organization…Crowdfunding: A saviour or white whale for the wine sector?Who in the world doesn’t love a party? And what party doesn’t need a crowd? And what an amazing crowd it is to be giving away money instead of protesting on the streets to get it…Provence Wine Council to Unveil its 2014 Vintage at “Provence in the City” EventsPaso Robles CAB Collective announces details for 2015 CABs of DistinctionEurope Seeks Alternatives to Vineyard Pest Control StaplesOklahoma measure opens door for wineriesConnecticut Governor Proposes Changes To Drinks Retail LandscapeWashington Dept. of Ecology crafting new rules for winery wastewaterRestaurant & Catering launches Washington Wine List Awards‘Painful moment’ as inflation hamstrings Argentina’s wine exportersAussie tax rebate removal costly for New Zealand wineriesSouth Africa brings in earliest wine harvest in over 20 yearsYoung adults are driving U.K. ‘teetotaling’ trendPeople:Meet the man who wants the world to drink Indian wineYoung Washington winemaker makes most of American dreamFew women hold vineyard management positionsCoach Dick Vermeil Teams Up with Winemaker Thomas BrownSte. Michelle Wine Estates CEO gives winemakers freedom to practice their passionsPaso Robles’ Ancient Peaks Winery names vice president of operationsWine experts find niche in beer marketCalifornia’s Man in Europe: An interview with Paul MollemanVintage 99 Label Names Gary Cane Vice PresidentLautenbach is Wisconsin grape Grower of the YearChristie Schulz: Wine Is A Fashion IndustryBob Ellsworth’s legacySanta Rosa Philanthropist Henry Trione dies at 94Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers honor their ownVirginia Winemaker Receives Standard of Excellence Recognition Facebook Sharecenter_img Twitter Advertisement Email Linkedin Pinterest Subscribe to the Afternoon BriefAdvertisement last_img read more

Hermès Sponsors Canadian Show Jumper Ben Asselin

first_img Subscribe to the Horse Sport newsletter and get an exclusive bonus digital edition! More from Horse Sport:Christilot Boylen Retires From Team SportAfter an exemplary career as one of Canada’s top Dressage riders, seven-time Olympian Christilot Boylen has announced her retirement from team competition.2020 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair CancelledFor only the second time in its history, The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair has been cancelled but plans are being made for some virtual competitions.Royal Agricultural Winter Fair Statement on 2020 EventAs the Province of Ontario starts to reopen, The Royal’s Board and staff will adhere to all recommendations put forward by government and health officials.Government Financial Assistance for Ontario FarmersOntario Equestrian has recently released this update of several financial assistance packages available, including those for farm business. Email* Horse Sport Enews Canada’s Ben Asselin (21) is pleased to announce that he recently joined a group of top international athletes competing in partnership with Hermès. Asselin, of Calgary, AB, has achieved numerous championship victories since his debut on the international show jumping scene as an 18-year-old in 2012. Hermès has always been committed to developing young potential in the riding world, and a press conference was held at the Saut Hermès FEI 5* Tournament during which this exciting new partnership was launched.Asselin trains and competes alongside his father, two-time Olympic veteran Jonathan Asselin, out of their family’s Attaché Stables. Among his many accolades, he was the only Canadian to jump double clear in the BMO Nations’ Cup at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ CSIO 5* this past September.Asselin is thrilled to announce this new partnership and looks forward to the company’s support as his show jumping career continues to develop.“I am incredibly honored to join in this prestigious partnership with Hermès, and I hope that I can represent them well,” Asselin stated. “Hermès is a brand that is recognized around the world. It represents both the highest of quality and respect for tradition. These are two things that are very important to me.”“I have great respect for the company,” Asselin added. “It traces its roots in our sport back to the early 1800s. What is just as impressive to me is that Hermès continues to represent that tradition while still innovating and evolving with the horse sports. As I continue to make my way in this sport, it is great to have Hermès to partner with.”Hermès joins with Kubota as the second major global brand to align itself with the rising star. After winning FEI championship medals at both the junior and young rider level, Asselin has enjoyed great early success both as an individual and Canadian Team member. Recent successes include being part of the gold medal team in the BMO Nations Cup at the 2014 Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ and a team silver medal for Canada at the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup Final in Barcelona last October.Asselin has a busy schedule of competition this year and will proudly represent Hermès throughout the season. He competes next at the Spruce Meadows Summer Series with hopes of being selected for the Canadian Team for the 2015 Pan American Games.About Ben AsselinAs the son of Canadian Olympian Jonathan Asselin and Nancy Southern, whose family owns the world-renowned show jumping venue Spruce Meadows, it is no surprise that Ben Asselin has chosen to follow in his family’s footsteps. In 2006, Asselin won the silver medal at the FEI Children’s International Jumping Final for riders aged 12 to 14. As a junior, Asselin posted a perfect score of five clear rounds riding Lolita to win the Individual Gold Medal at the 2010 FEI North American Junior Championships, also leading Alberta to Team Gold. As a result, Asselin was awarded the Gillian Wilson Trophy as Equine Canada’s ‘Junior Equestrian of the Year’ for 2010.In 2012, Asselin made his senior Canadian Show Jumping Team debut as a member of the Nations’ Cup team in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The youngest member of the team, Asselin helped Canada tie for second place. In 2013, Asselin scored his first victory in the International Ring at the Spruce Meadows “Masters” tournament, winning the $205,000 Encana Cup riding Makavoy. In 2014, he posted double clear rounds to lead Canada to victory riding Makavoy in the $300,000 BMO Nations’ Cup at the Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ tournament. Asselin and Makavoy also helped Canada earn a silver medal at the 2014 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Final in Barcelona, Spain. For more information on Ben Asselin and Attaché Stables, please visit them on Facebook and follow Asselin on Instagram @benasselin13. Tags: Ben Asselin, Hermès, SIGN UP We’ll send you our regular newsletter and include you in our monthly giveaways. PLUS, you’ll receive our exclusive Rider Fitness digital edition with 15 exercises for more effective riding.last_img read more

Bkool divests bike trainer operations, with focus on cycling simulator app

first_img Related Spanish bike trainer and software firm, Bkool, has stopped manufacturing hardware in order to focus on its cycling simulator software. The company will no longer be shipping bike trainers, such as its Bkool Smart Air direct drive trainer, or its more recently launched smart bike. It has sold this part of its business to Versa Design.It is understood that Versa (also based in Spain) will rebrand Bkool bike trainers under its own Zycle brand.In a note to its customers, Bkool stated… ‘Ending the production of our hardware was a difficult decision. Bkool pioneered the development of smart trainers. Despite our company’s size and resources, we have done a good job. But we do not believe that it is our place as a company to compete against Elite, Tacx, Saris or Wahoo, but to develop our simulator so that everyone can enjoy the best indoor cycling experience possible.’Wences Sevillano, Bkool’s CEO, said “For Bkool, this agreement is essential for us, as it allows us to focus on the development of the best cycling simulator in the market.“Each day we have more users who use other brands’ trainers in our simulator. Our future as a company is to offer the best simulation experience, no matter what trainer you may have. And this agreement allows us to put all our effort into it, developing the best digital product for every cyclist.”Juan Ramón Vadillo, founder of Versa Design, said “We are excited about this new stage for our company. Through Zycle, we will not only provide continuity to the range of existing products, but we will strengthen it with new technological products, maintaining compatibility with Bkool and strengthening support with other simulators. We will apply our industrial capacity to achieve the technical excellence of the product and thus satisfy today’s increasingly demanding customer.”Bkool’s cycling simulator was originally developed a number of years ago as a companion to its hardware business. The platform pre-dates Zwift. Although, the latter has since become a dominant force in indoor training following a number of funding rounds and its expansion into the e-sports space.Bkool may face some challenges with its now head-on competition with Zwift in the training software space. Although, it cites almost 100,000 active users last year (around half of which are paid-up premium users) and more than 250,000 in total having used the platform over the years.www.bkool.comwww.zycle.eulast_img read more

LinkedIn and The Strange Case of The Disappearing Market

first_imgThe Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Tags:#enterprise#Features#social networks#web Is LinkedIn worth $1bn? Yes. Why? Because Bain Capital says it is. The stock is not public, so you and I cannot trade it. The whole notion of the average punter trading tech stocks (or the average punter’s pension fund trading it on your behalf) seems rather quaint, from some bygone era. But why has the public market for tech stocks disappeared? Where has it disappeared to? Will it ever return? The LinkedIn financing offers some clues to these questions.LinkedIn has a dominant market position, their revenues are growing like a weed, they are profitable and they have growth ambitions that require lots of capital. For the last hundred years or so that has meant a company is ready for an IPO. LinkedIn management did say something about private financing being better, due to the “distractions” of quarterly reporting. I have seldom known people refuse the IPO “golden ticket” because of “distractions”. What we are really witnessing is a strange reversal of normal market rules.The rules used to be:The real stars went for IPO, where you got the highest valuation. Management also got to keep some independence and could use their public currency to make acquisitions. Everything else was second best. Next best was to get bought by a public company with a mix of cash and stock, the idea being that the public company’s stock would do well and you would get wealthy from that. If the public company acquiring you had an inflated “bubble” currency, the trick was how to get quickly to cash – ask Mark Cuban how to do that.Next best was to get an all cash deal from a private company. As these companies usually don’t have too much cash and hoard it carefully, these deals are smaller. But if you showed some strategic value you could do well.If you grew slowly and made some profits you fell into a category that VCs call “the living dead”. Not dead, as the business is profitably self-sustaining. But not hot enough for deals 1,2 or 3. This was where a very unfashionable firm called a Private Equity (PE) Fund stepped in. They had lots of spreadsheets showing net present value, all of which are designed to show you that your business is worth an awful lot less than you thought. These rules determined valuation. IPO got you the highest multiple. If you have real profit growth you could get a PE multiple of 60 to 100. If your profits were growing at 60% that PE of 60 would be a PEG of 1.0 and that is viewed as a bargain. In the Private Equity world, an EBITDA multiple of 6 is bargain time and 10 is considered “frothy”. EBITDA is not quite the same as PE, but it is good enough to show that these worlds (public and private) used to have 10x factor difference in valuation.Clearly these rules no longer apply. Bain Capital is a Private Equity Fund, a rather special example of the breed and sharing some characteristics with VC Funds, but still a Private Equity Fund. And they appear to have given LinkedIn a multiple that is in the 60 to 100 range. (My calculation is based on LinkedIn statements that revenue in 2008 will be in the range $80m to $100m and an assumption that profits are in the 10% range i.e. $8m to $10m.) In other words, a Private Equity Fund is giving a public market valuation.In which case, LinkedIn management got a good deal. They got the valuation premium normally associated with a public market without any of the hassles and uncertainties of a public market. Given the big tasks ahead for management (more on that later) that seems like a smart move.Which begs the question, did Bain Capital get a good deal? This was Series C, so earlier investors – all of whom are top tier VC – got a paper increase in value and probably put in more cash to maintain their % (“re-upping” in deal terms). So the earlier investors did well on paper. What about Bain Capital?Bain Capital has a first class reputation. They are separate from Bain Consulting but grew out of that strategic consulting stable. So they are not passive investors, they really look for ways to build a ton of value and historically they have done that. So it is reasonable to assume they looked at this very carefully and have a shot at making a lot of money from this investment.However, these are clearly strange times and the strangeness is reflected in what PE Hub called the ” late night infomercial”, where all the investors are on YouTube proclaiming over and over again that $1bn was a screaming bargain. So, did Bain Capital get a bargain? Well, it all depends on what management does with the money. LinkedIn is the dominant business networking site in America. That is a hugely valuable asset as switching costs are high. You could argue, correctly that LinkedIn misses key features and they are still learning how to monetize fully. But those are execution issues and they have a strong management team who can fix those issues. The simple fact of switching costs makes LinkedIn a valuable asset that, if properly managed, will generate a lot of profits. LinkedIn dominates in America and other English-speaking markets. But we live in global markets and LinkedIn has an equivalent in Europe – Xing – that on some metrics is stronger than LinkedIn, as we have outlined here.And the huge Asian markets are still up for grabs, with no obvious pan-Asian champion.Using private financing for an acquisition-led global expansion is the sort of thing Bain Capital knows how to do. It is slightly foreign territory for LinkedIn’s earlier investors. So, this deal seems to make excellent strategic sense.So, this is a two horse globalization race. The American horse – LinkedIn – has private capital. The European horse – Xing – has public market investors. This does illuminate some of the bigger market questions:Why has the public market for tech stocks disappeared? Because a bunch of slick promoters hyped up tech stocks in the 1998 to 2000 era and some of them turned out to be outright scams. The bar is now really high – as it should be. But, on historical standards, LinkedIn looks strong enough for IPO.Where has it disappeared to? To Europe and Asia, which did not have the same wild boom and bust and which therefore is not suffering the same regulatory and investor pushback that we see in America.Will it ever return? It has to. Private Equity needs a public market at some stage for their exits to get maximum return. Public markets are still the best way for ordinary investors to operate in a level playing field and for companies to raise large amounts of capital. Related Posts center_img bernard lunn Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Auditlast_img read more

Hitwise: News Sites Need Search Engines and Aggregators

first_imgTags:#New Media#news#web frederic lardinois 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market There is also a lot of traffic that is directly shared between news sites. Outbound traffic from other news sites accounts for just as many visits as traffic from search engines (21.6%).According to Hitwise, the Drudge Report is the largest single source of visitors to news and media sites. Google News (1.5%), (1.4%) and Yahoo! News (0.8%) also drive relatively large amounts of traffic, but it is interesting that no single site really holds anything close to a monopoly here.The Associated Press and the traditional newspaper business are obviously under a lot of stress right now (and in many ways, Craigslist is the real culprit here – not Google News and portals), but a large part of traffic to news sites is driven by portal sites. We can’t blame the AP for trying to protect its intellectual property rights, but, as Google’s Eric Schmidt described it, “these are ultimately consumer businesses and if you piss off enough of them, you will not have any more.”Image credit: Flickr user Matt Callow A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… It’s no secret that the Associated Press and Google News aren’t exactly getting along right now. According to the AP, Google News and other content aggregators often come too close to violating the principles of fair use. Most people, however, would argue that these aggregators actually bring more traffic to newspaper websites, and according to the latest data from Hitwise, this is exactly the case.Search traffic, according to Hitwise, is the largest driver of traffic to sites in the company’s ‘News & Media’ category (21.6%). Portal frontpages like My Yahoo and My MSN currently drive about 13% of traffic to these sites, and social networking services and forums drive about 4.9%. Blogs and personal websites are only responsible for a very small 1.5% of all traffic. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts last_img read more

F2 skipper Cruz: We wanted to show we can come back

first_imgAfter 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads “When we were given the chance to take the fourth set, we knew that we wanted to claim the game and that we can comeback from a deficit,” said Cruz in Filipino Thursday at Filoil Flying V Centre.READ: F2 forces rubber match for PSL Grand Prix title, survives PetronFEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingF2 was down two sets to one in the fourth set and immediately looked at a 0-9 deficit at the start of the period, but the Cargo Movers mounted a 13-4 run that tied the scores at 13-13.Maria Perez then capped off another one of F2’s run, a 9-3 spurt, to give the Cargo Movers a 22-18 lead. MOST READ Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims F2 captain Cha Cruz. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netWhen F2 Logistics needed a heroine in Game 2 of the Philippine Super Liga Grand Prix Finals, skipper Cha Cruz took the majestic route and willed the Cargo Movers in an inspired clutch performance.Cruz, who finished with 10 points, said it all started with their mentality that they can, and will, send the championship round to a third game after their comeback Game 2 victory, 25-20, 24-26, 14-25, 25-19, 15-4, against Petron.ADVERTISEMENT The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Malditas save PH from shutoutcenter_img MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 It was in the fifth set that Cruz finally showed off her chops when she punished Petron setter Rhea Dimaculangan with an off-the-block kill that gave F2 a 10-3 lead.Cruz then delivered the Cargo Movers to match point territory with a service ace, 14-4, before Perez ended the match with a booming kill.“Deep in my heart, I know I have the spirit that I really want to play, I want to contribute for the team,” said Cruz. “And I think it was just perfect timing that I was in the game and I was able to deliver.”ADVERTISEMENT SBP starts hosting preps by observing in 2019 Fiba World Cup in China Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH LATEST STORIES View commentslast_img read more

Cristiano’s a drunk! Barcelona in trouble for anti-Ronaldo song

first_imgBarcelona could now face a fine for the song following the probe ordered by the LFPThe anti-violence committee of the La Liga (LFP) has decided to open a case against FC Barcelona as the result of a song insulting Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo.The song, which was sung by a sector of the crowd during Barcelona’s 5-0 thrashing of Levante Sunday was “He’s a drunk, Cristiano is a drunk”. The song was in clear reference to Ronaldo’s infamous 30th birthday party which was held just a matter of hours after Real had lost to Atletico Madrid the previous weekend, reports Xinhua.The La Liga observer in the ground said he had heard, “the intonation of a song in a sports stadium in the 65th minute of the game and from a group of supporters following the home team — a group of approximately 200 people”.”The fans initiated the following song ‘He’s a drunk, Cristiano is a drunk’ in reference to the Real Madrid players, Cristiano Ronaldo in a choral, coordinated and repetitive manner,” the committee’s report revealed Tuesday.Barcelona could now face a fine for the song, while anyone identified as having taken part in the singing probably faces a fine and a probable stadium ban.This is part of the crackdown on fan behaviour in the wake of the death of a radical supporter of Deportivo la Coruna in a fight against Atletico Madrid radicals ahead of the game between the two sides Nov 30 last year.last_img read more

AP Accidentally Names Denzel Washington, Not Denzel Valentine, Player Of The Year

first_imgDenzel Washington and Buddy Heild AP tweet.denzel washington ap tweetBack in the 1970s, Denzel Washington, now one of the most famous actors on the planet, played basketball at Fordham for head coach P.J. Carlesimo. Apparently, he was so successful, that decades later, he’s being recognized for his greatness.…or, the AP just made a fairly big typo.Thursday, the Associated Press named its Player of the Year, which is actually Michigan State’s Denzel Valentine. In their tweet to announce the news, they accidentally named Denzel Washington as the winner.denzel washington ap tweetThe AP later corrected the mistake and poked some fun at itself.Sorry Denzel Washington. We do love you, but Denzel Valentine is actually AP Player of Year— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) March 31, 2016 Well, that was fun. In all seriousness, congratulations to Denzel Valentine.last_img read more

First LNG shipment leaves BC for China as industry looks to expand

first_imgSURREY, B.C. – FortisBC says it has shipped 950 gigajoules of liquefied natural gas from Vancouver to China, marking the industry’s first shipment to the Asian country.The move is part of a pilot project aimed to determine long-term feasibility of B.C. LNG shipments to China.FortisBC’s Tilbury facility in Delta, B.C., supplied the liquefied natural gas, while True North Energy Corp. and CIMC ENRIC Holdings Ltd. provided equipment and logistics.FortisBC spokesman Douglas Stout says that the small but significant step for the province’s LNG export industry could be the first of many shipments from the province.All three companies involved say China is projected to become the world’s second largest LNG importer by next year as its government steps up efforts to combat air pollution and convert millions of homes to natural gas heaters, as well as boost industrial use.They say the country has limited reserves and is turning to others, including British Columbia, to fill the gap.last_img read more

BJP to get mandate bigger than in 2014: Jaitley

first_imgNew Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday said that the BJP would get a bigger mandate than in 2014 in the general elections and the “New India” is a positive India which does not accept the “negativism of Rahul, Arvind Kejriwal, Mamata Banerjee and TDP”. In a blog post, “Has the Congress Thrown its Hands up?”, Jaitley said voting for the first three rounds of the elections covering 303 parliamentary seats is over and electoral battle now enters the Hindi heartland. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework He said that in most of the states where elections are to be held in the coming rounds, it is a direct contest between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the opposition party “is in no position to effectively take on the regional parties or the BJP”. “Therefore, the only issue in the future rounds is the width of the margin of victory of the BJP. Will it be a repeat of 2014 in terms of votes, or will it be more? A euphoric reaction at the ground suggests a mandate larger than 2014. A 65 per cent to 70 per cent approval rating for an incumbent Prime Minister is unprecedented in India. It is reflecting in the groundswell,” Jaitley said. Also Read – Trio win Nobel Medicine Prize for work on cells, oxygen He said the Congress has announced 424 seats, though the proposed grand alliance at the national level died before it was born. Jaitley said that Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in the last one year, built up “a fake narrative” on Rafale and loan waiver to business houses, which was contrary to the truth. “The fake issues evaporated and now strike no chord with the electorate. Having to apologise to the Supreme Court for false public narrative significantly diminishes the credibility of a political leader. Rahul became a victim of his own falsehood,” Jaitley said. The BJP leader said that the “desperation reached a peak” when Gandhi, “without realising that Arvind Kejriwal was playing games with him”, offered him four seats contrary to the advice of the party’s state unit and “displayed the desperation of a loser”. Attacking the Congress leader further, Jaitley said that instead of sharing the nationalist mood in the country post Balakot, Gandhi positioned his party against both the national interest and the national mood. “He considered Balakot not a blow to Pakistan-sponsored terrorism but to the Congress party. When the Kashmir parties take a position of soft separatism, the Congress has been unable to reveal either its stand for or any opposition to it.” Jaitley said that the desperation reached climax when the Congress and the NCP had to “outsource” the job of attacking Prime Minister to MNS leader Raj Thackeray without realising the fallout of such a move in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and other north Indian states. He said the Congress manifesto on national security was completely against the nationalistic mood in the country. “Rahul had to seek cover at Wayanad and Priyanka had to skip Varanasi and feel satisfied not to contest because there was no Wayanad available to her. The ‘New India’ is a positive India. It does not accept the negativism of Rahul, Arvind Kejriwal, Mamata Banerjee and TDP. The ‘New India’ wants to look up rather than be cynical and critical about their own country,” he said. Jaitley said that the Congress and Rahul Gandhi are 48 years behind the times. “2019 and 1971 are 48 years apart. India’s social combination and economic profile has completely changed. The Congress is contesting the 2019 election on the 1971 agenda. It is not in tune with the times. The writing on the wall is loud and clear. Those who lived a life of entitlement all through, give up when office seems to be a distant dream,” the Minister said. He said that in the North East, Bengal and Odisha, the contest was between the regional parties and the BJP and the party also appears to be making significant gains in the east. Among the southern states, Karnataka appears to be going the BJP way. “With the regional parties dominating Andhra and Telangana, the Congress in both states and the TDP are staring at a washout.”last_img read more