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New York is on the verge of anarchy – and nobody seems to care



New York is on the verge of anarchy – and nobody seems to care

This past weekend I spent an hour exercising in an underground Harlem gym, where the work-out was accompanied by copious amounts of marijuana. Everything about the experience was illegal: the basement of the bustling restaurant where we worked our core as waiters ferried food orders. The pot – although technically legal in New York State – was being smoked in an unlicensed distribution site. What’s more, the marijuana itself was grown in the Pacific Northwest, technically illegal in New York State where all marijuana consumed must be grown, yes, in New York.

There’s a new sense of lawlessness coursing through New York City, and I’m not talking about the city’s well-documented crime spikes. I mean a return to rampant low-level vice that feels at once entirely out of control – yet inexplicably well-behaved – and thoroughly post-pandemic. From the city’s thousands of unlicensed pot dispensaries and the throngs of illegal vendors now crowding the Brooklyn Bridge, to my clandestine Uptown exercising and the dozens of Queens prostitutes now operating in broad daylight, New York’s newest tag-line might as well be “anything goes.”

But this new era of openness is not without consequence, particularly as the police prove ineffective at reigning in the illicitness. Nationwide confidence in law enforcement dropped to a new low last year, including in New York, where the local force has been battered by budget cuts, misconduct probes and accusations of bias. A series of particularly public violent crimes has only added to the city’s discord, as has a nearly 20 per cent rise in homeless numbers just this year alone. Add in the now constant smell of cannabis, flocks of deadly, unregulated electric delivery bikes – along with a 65 per cent decline in new police recruits and thousands of undocumented migrants – and the city is like the Wild West rendered in glass-and-steel. And most bafflingly of all, no one seems to care.

It’s a recipe for disaster – and early figures suggested catastrophe was at hand. Heavily fueled by 2019’s progressive-led bail-reforms, crime rose by double digits across New York in both 2020 and 2021. But something intriguing has begun to emerge: as laws are further flouted, violent crime numbers are actually declining city-wide. Indeed, shootings fell by 17 per cent in 2022 and so far in 2023, serious crimes such as murder, rape and burglary have decreased by double-digits across most of New York. The NYPD may be hemorrhaging officers while felons are increasingly permitted by prosecutors to walk free, but the city has yet to turn into the bloody free-for-all conjured in films such as The Purge.

Why not? For one thing, even as illegality explodes around us, the vast majority of New Yorkers remain particularly well-behaved. Crime hasn’t just declined: in most of New York, it’s back to pre-pandemic levels. In fact, when measured against the city’s historic highs during the 1980s and 1990s, this is still among the safest-ever eras to make New York City home.

Indeed, according to NYPD Compstat data, most of New York’s violent crime now occurs in just a few poor and minority communities – by just a few poor and minority criminals far from Manhattan’s power centers. As DAs treat crime as just another public nuisance, for the moment at least, wealthy white New Yorkers are practically immune from its consequences, further fueling entitlement among those with the resources to enjoy it most.

Bad behavior was practically nonexistent at my cannabis workout on Saturday. Amid exposed concrete floors and blaring rap, everyone did what they were told – whether perfecting their plank, making way for waiters, or lighting up in approved smoking spots – with little fear of repercussion. Over on the Brooklyn Bridge, tourists happily pose with those rogue hawkers with minimal fuss or fanfare. While the Department of Transport says it’s working to formally ban illegal operators, few appear bothered by them except for the handful of licensed sellers who want their turf back.

A vast chasm is now growing between urban officials demanding increased enforcement and average citizens who just don’t give a damn. Battered by the pandemic, skyrocketing inflation and housing costs, safety fears and culture wars, New Yorkers have been lulled into a kind of care-free complacency in which the privileged are cocooned from everyday unpleasantries while the poor are too battered by them to fight back. There’s a sudden do-as-we-please attitude in town; a performative untouchability that’s resulted in a tolerance for petty scourges aided by lax law enforcement and almost unimaginable even five years ago. (New York is a city, after all, where it’s still illegal to drink beer on the street).

New York has always been a place of rules – and rule followers – but never more so than today. In a way, we have no other choice. The police are untrustworthy and ineffective, while local prosecutors are powerless to lock up criminals in the face of soft-on-crime progressive law-makers up in Albany. How soft? In 2021, for instance, nearly 70 per cent of criminal cases were dropped by the city’s court system. But the rules New Yorkers now follow appear highly selective and often self-generated. Somehow, everyone has found a way to indulge without fear of consequences.

But those consequences are actually everywhere, particularly as modest indulgences evolve into outright impunity. Pharmacies and convenience stores now barricade ice cream bars behind chains to combat the rampant shoplifting crisis that’s accompanied New York’s fentanyl crisis. Meanwhile, Fentanyl is now encroaching far beyond the city’s blighted fringes as everyone from toddlers to investment bankers succumb to its potency.  In Union Square, a social media-inspired gathering erupted into a mass riot this past August. Also in Union Square: Illegal hawkers peddling pepper spray canisters for self-defense. Guess what? They’re illegal too; because bafflingly, you can’t sell pepper spray in New York City. New York’s unanticipated laxness may still appear tolerable – but the rising casualties and chaos suggest it’s ultimately unsustainable.

No matter the tax bracket, rising citizen disdain for police and politicians suggests that the mythical purge could actually be close at hand. But convincing New Yorkers to return to law and order will prove far harder now that laissez-faire legality has become the cultural norm. Post George Floyd, New York has little taste for the petty crime crackdowns that defined the Giuliani and Bloomberg administrations. Now accustomed to doing what we want, where we want, when we want it, our standards for citizenship and civility have never felt more fluid.

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How can a tax calculator simplify your tax filing process?



Tax filing season can be a stressful time for many people. There’s a lot of paperwork to gather, and the tax code can be complex and confusing. However, a tax calculator app can help to simplify the tax filing process and make it less stressful.

Here are some of the ways that a tax calculator app can simplify your tax filing process:

  • Accurate calculations: A tax calculator app assist you to to appropriately calculate your taxes, deliberating all of your applicable income, deductions, and credit. This will let you to keep away from overpaying your taxes or making steeply-priced errors in your tax go back.
  • Easy to apply interface: Tax calculator apps are generally clean to apply and navigate, even for people without a tax revel in. This makes it easy to calculate your taxes and prepare your tax go back while not having to lease a professional tax preparer.
  • Convenience: Tax calculator apps are available from everywhere with a web connection. This approach that you could calculate your taxes at your convenience, from anywhere in the international.
  • Speed: Tax calculator apps can calculate your taxes in seconds, saving you time and trouble.
  • Tax making plans: Tax calculator apps also can assist you to plot your taxes and make informed choices approximately your finances. For example, you could use a tax calculator app to look how one of a kind tax deductions and credits will affect your tax liability.

In addition to these standard blessings, some tax calculator apps also provide capabilities which can make the tax filing manner even less complicated, together with:

  • Tax audit practice: Some tax calculator apps can help you to prepare for a tax audit by using reviewing your tax go back for capacity errors and omissions.
  • Tax coaching assistance: Some tax calculator apps can offer step-by way of-step commands and assistance with finishing complex tax forms.
  • Electronic tax submitting: Some tax calculator apps will let you to electronically file your tax return, saving you time and trouble.

Overall, a tax calculator app can be a precious device for taxpayers of all ranges of enjoy. By simplifying the tax filing procedure and making it extra efficient, tax calculator apps can assist taxpayers to save money and time.

Here are a few suggestions for selecting a tax calculator app:

  • Look for a comprehensive tax calculator app that can calculate all sorts of taxes, including profits tax, income tax, and property tax.
  • Choose an app with an smooth-to-use interface and accurate tax calculations.
    Make certain the app is up to date regularly with the cutting-edge tax laws and regulations.
  • Consider the usage of an app that offers additional capabilities which include tax audit preparation, tax education help, and digital tax submitting.

By following those guidelines, you could pick a tax calculator app that will help you to simplify your tax submitting procedure and make it less annoying.

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Live match blog – India vs Australia Final 2023/24 – Cricket Insights



Live match blog - India vs Australia Final 2023/24 - Cricket Insights

Australia need 241! That’s the same total England and New Zealand made in the 2019 final.

The key to bowling on a slow pitch is to keep to your discipline and limit the damage. Australia chose to bowl knowing the margin of error was less than zero. They came face to face with that when Rohit Sharma was going bonkers at the start. And they survived it because their fielding has been unreal.

Travis Head pulled off a catch that may well rival the one Kapil Dev took in 1983.

India went 97 balls without a boundary; they managed just four since the end of the 10th over. They thought they were consolidating. But in came Pat Cummins, dismissing Virat Kohli. He is the first fast bowler to complete his full 10 overs in this World Cup and not concede a boundary. Later Mitchell Starc found reverse swing. In the knockouts he’s taken six wickets at an average of 14.

Adam Zampa saw the pitch being slow and he too took pace off, going down to 84 kph once. He gave away just one four in his 10 overs. Australia sized up the conditions and responded to them perfectly.

Head and David Warner and Cummins and Zampa were saving boundaries all over the place. The field placements were excellent too. They had an offside sweeper out for Rohit because they guessed he would try to hit them off their lines and lengths by making room to the leg side. They had deep third man very fine to Suryakumar Yadav because his V is behind the wicket, not in front, and along with that gave him no pace to play his ramps and scoops.

This game, if they win it, and there’s still a long way to go, especially if there’s no dew, was made back in the drawing board.

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Tim Henman suggests Carlos Alcaraz is the greatest of all-time in one key area



Carlos Alcaraz in action

We may be a little too early to suggest Carlos Alcaraz could get into the discussion over who is the greatest male player of all time, but the Spaniad is certainly excelling in one key area.

Having lost his opening match to Alexander Zverev, Alcaraz knew only victory over previously unbeaten Medvedev would be enough to qualify for the semi-finals.

He achieved the feat in style, wrapping up a 6-4 6-4 victory to join the Russian in the last four on his debut in Turin.

Alcaraz’s superior sets record means he tops the group and will face Djokovic in a rematch of their unforgettable Wimbledon final, while Medvedev meets fourth seed Jannik Sinner, the only player yet to lose a match.

It was an impressive performance from Alcaraz after he lost his first match of the event against Alexander Zverev, as he continued an alarming slump in form that started with a defeat against Medvedev at the US Open.

Now the 20-year-old Spaniard is roaring back to his best, with his win against Andrey Rublev backed up by a victory against his great friend Medvedev.

During his commentary stint on the Alcaraz vs Medvedev match, former British No 1 Henman suggested the young Spaniard has separated himself from the greatest players the game has ever seen with his movement on the court.

“Is he the best mover to have ever played the game?” asked Henman.

“There have been some phenomenal movers, but from where I am sitting, I haven’t seen many quicker.

“We have had some great movers in the sport, but Alcaraz is right up there.

“There have been plenty of great movers in tennis, but his flexibility and control at the end of it is exceptional. His movement is just phenomenal.”

Novak Djokovic fans will argue their man has redefined how to move on a tennis court in the modern era, with his ability to slide on hard courts and contort his body into unnatural positions a skill that has helped him dominate the men’s game.

Roger Federer was also a divine mover when he was at his best, with his graceful presence on the court giving the impression that he was moving through the gears with relentless ease.

Rafael Nadal has also been a remarkable mover, with his dominance on clay courts helped by his sliding ability that has taken the sport on that surface to a while new level.

Now Henman may have started the ball rolling on a movement debate that will have no definitive answer, with Alcaraz admitting his movement was a big issue as he tried to find his feet on grass this summer.

The young Spaniard struggled on the surface in his first match at The Queen’s Club tournament in June, but quickly master the art of moving on grass as he lifted the trophy at that event and then went on to win Wimbledon.

“The most difficult part is to move well on grass,” said Alcaraz. “You need to be more careful than other surfaces, so for me to move on grass is the most difficult.

“The most comfortable (thing) is going to the net and playing aggressively all the time. For me it is similar to other surfaces with my style. Playing that style is comfortable and I like it.

“There are a lot of players who slice on grass. I am not one of them, so I have to think about the movement. I have to be focused on every movement and shot. For me it is more tiring when you are moving on grass. It is totally different, so you have to be really specific.”

Alcaraz’s youthful body allows him to be dynamic on court and that helps his movement, with the genius he can display on court helped by his ability to get to the ball quicker than his rivals.

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