TORONTO — A 95-year-old man who has had his citizenship revoked several times for lying about his membership in a Second World War Nazi death squad has lost yet another bid to have his case revisited.The Federal Court of Appeal dismissed the latest legal action from Helmut Oberlander, whose case dates back to the 1990s.Courts have repeatedly ruled that Oberlander’s Canadian citizenship should be revoked on the grounds that he lied about his participation in a Nazi squad responsible for the deaths of nearly 100,000 people, although there has never been any evidence that he took part in atrocities.The latest ruling had come from Federal Court Judge Michael Phelan last September, but Oberlander alleged the judge was biased because of previous involvement in the case and took the matter to the higher court.A three-judge panel with the Federal Court of Appeal dismissed Oberlander’s motion to have his case revisited in a written decision released Thursday.“There is a strong presumption that judges will comply with their solemn judicial oath to administer justice impartially,” the decision reads.“This presumption is not easily rebutted, particularly where the previous decision in question which forms the foundation of the bias allegation took place a decade ago, under a different legal regime, and on a different record.”In June 2017, the federal government revoked Oberlander’s Canadian citizenship for the fourth time since the mid 1990s. In doing so, the government maintained he was complicit in war crimes by belonging to Einsatzkommando 10a, known as Ek-10a.The Ukraine-born Oberlander, who came to Canada in 1954 and became a citizen in 1960, has long argued he was conscripted into the unit as a 17-year-old and risked execution had he tried to leave. He has insisted he acted as an interpreter and took no part in its savagery.Phelan was asked to rule on the government’s citizenship revocation decision in September 2018. He found it reasonable to strip Oberlander of his Canadian citizenship for misrepresenting his war-time activities when he immigrated.In reaching his conclusion, Phelan said a 2000 ruling from Federal Court Judge Andrew MacKay found Oberlander to have been aware of the unit’s brutality and complicit in its war crimes by acting as an interpreter.However, Oberlander’s lawyers Ronald Poulton and Barbara Jackman argued that Phelan misinterpreted MacKay’s decision and was in fact leaning on his own previous ruling from 2008 — one that was upended on appeal.“Justice Phelan sat in judgment on his own previous finding,” the lawyers argued.The Federal Court of Appeal said judges frequently need to revisit their own work, adding that the lengthy amount of time that had elapsed between Phelan’s two rulings was relevant.The judges also noted that Phelan had to rely on different legal procedures in his two rulings, since the Supreme Court had changed the test for war crimes complicity in 2013.“The Supreme Court changed the test … from participation or indirect complicity to complicity based on a knowing, significant, and voluntary contribution,” the decision reads. “The judicial review before Phelan in 2018 involved a different legal test than that which governed in 2008.”Michelle McQuigge, The Canadian Press
For example, of the 24 wild-card-round veterans who made it to the conference championships since 1994, eight have gone on to win the Super Bowl (including seven of 20 who faced a top-2 seed in every round). For a road team, having a 1-3 chance of winning the Super Bowl with two games to go is ridiculous: Road teams in the playoffs normally have only about a 1-3 chance of winning their next game.After two solid victories against strong teams (beating the Cincinnati Bengals — a fellow five-loss team — and the heavily favored Peyton-Manning-led Broncos in Denver, each by double digits), the Colts’ stats suddenly look a lot better than they did when they were getting thrashed by the Dallas Cowboys a few weeks ago.You can see how those wins have changed the Colts’ fortunes in the chart below. I plotted winning efficiency vs. scoring efficiency — generally the two main modes of statistical analysis in football.3Using expected wins added per game from offense and defense (similar to “WPA,” calculated using ESPN’s expected win percentage model) against the net expected points per drive (from “EPA” of offense and defense). I’ve then compared where each playoff team stood at the start of the playoffs to where they stand now (upper right is better):As you can see, the Colts have made the biggest positive move by a long shot. This is what the “trial by fire” phenomenon is all about: Since the Colts have taken the hardest road to get where they are, we’ve learned more about them.And what’s crazy is that this movement may underestimate what we’ve really learned. Unlike Elo ratings or SRS, these EPA and WPA metrics don’t account for strength of opponent (though ESPN’s model does account for playing on the road). It also treats the Colts’ playoff games as being just as important as their regular-season games, which empirically doesn’t seem to be the case (as I mentioned last week, we’re going on at least 20-plus years now where playoff games have been between two and five times as important as regular-season ones, depending on your assumptions).Of course, the other remaining playoff teams have won to get where they are as well. But think of it like this: If the chart underestimates each team’s movement, each arrow could be twice as long, and then we’d see a very different picture — the Colts might even leapfrog the Patriots. As it stands, the Colts have closed much of the gap between themselves and the favorites anyway, and may very well deserve to be right there with them.But are they good enough to win a Super Bowl? Here’s a plot of every team that had positive WPA and EPA stats entering the playoffs since 1994. I’ve marked Super Bowl winners in dark gray and present-year (eliminated) teams with empty circles:The Colts are well within “contender” range, and the teams ahead of them aren’t historically dominant.And the Green Bay Packers, tops in each metric, shouldn’t get complacent. Only three of 14 teams with better EPA have won championships, and two of 16 teams with higher WPA have won, and just one of the unlucky nine teams that were better on both axes won. Now, obviously the Packers are already into the third round of the playoffs, so we’d probably expect their chances to be a bit better than other teams in their neighborhood — but even accounting for that, a team of their strength at this stage hasn’t done any better than the average “trial by fire” team in the same spot.So things are looking up for Luck and crew: They’re a stronger-than-normal wild-card-round veteran playing against slightly weaker-than-normal dominant teams. Great.And now for the bad newsThe bad news is that the Colts have to play the Patriots, who eliminated them from the playoffs in last year’s divisional round, 43-22, and then dropped another 40 points on the Colts in their 42-20 Week 11 victory in Indianapolis (to add insult, the Colts were also coming off of a bye).So in the past year, in one home and one away game, the Patriots have won twice and outscored the Colts 85-42.But does this matter? Figuring out just how predictive “prequel” games can be (relative to other metrics) is a surprisingly thorny issue. Here are a few of the difficulties:The home team in the playoffs generally has the better record or holds tiebreakers against a team it has already played. This means it’s more likely to have won any regular-season matchup.We know that home-field advantage in the playoffs is generally stronger than it is in the regular season, and a big part of that is due to the fact that stronger teams tend to host playoff games. But part of the effect may also be because a team that can regularly beat another team it plays will also be more likely to play that team in the playoffs at home.Because of the aforementioned “trial by fire” effect, away teams in later rounds of the playoffs may be stronger than we would expect. This may actually mean that the home-field effect is stronger than it appears — such as if the home team won a regular amount of the time against teams that were stronger than average.The Super Bowl is weird. Again perhaps partly because of “trial by fire,” teams that lost to their Super Bowl opponents in the regular season actually have a winning record in the championship game. The possible causal link here4This is only 13 Super Bowls, and so, speculative.: A team that won the matchup in the regular season is more likely to have the easier road to get to the rematch.I tried to run some regressions, but because there are so many distinct scenarios that are very different from each other, the samples are too small to detect persistent trends, much less statistically significant ones.That said, there are a few things that we can probably extrapolate — at least as being supported by the data, if not proved by it — from looking at the equivalent scenarios. So let’s start with teams that played each other twice in the regular season vs. teams that didn’t play each other at all:Cases where the home team in the playoffs lost both regular-season games are too rare to give them any weight (though they do favor the regular-season victor). The most salient point is that playoff home teams that beat their opponents twice (as opposed to just once) in the regular season win about 9 percentage points more often (68.8 percent vs. 59.5 percent). This also doesn’t appear to have anything to do with the relative strength of the teams, because the sweeping teams have had a lower difference in margin of victory.5Why don’t teams that beat their opponents twice win more often than teams that haven’t played their opponent at all? I don’t know — perhaps some of the reasons above, or maybe there’s truth to the idea that divisional rivalries are different. In the baseline category — a game between teams that never played in the regular season — the home team has won in the playoffs 68 percent of the time.This suggests that matchups matter, at least in cases where a team goes 2/2 against their opponents. But what about cases where they only played one game? These have the added wrinkle that someone (almost always) had home-field advantage in that game. So the scenarios look like this:The differences here are smaller — as we would expect, and they comport pretty closely with the relative overall strengths of the teams in question — though there’s still some causal complexity (a single road win vs. a home loss can pretty much account for the observed difference in strength). You can contemplate the road/home performance and its relationship to margin of victory in the playoffs and ensuing results all day (I’ve spun my head around it plenty). But the bottom line is that playoff home teams that won their regular-season matchups against their playoff opponents on the road have won close to 75 percent of the time in the playoffs — the highest of any of these scenarios.tl;dr: The Patriots beat the Colts 42-20 in Indianapolis this year. That’s not good news for Indianapolis.But I’ll offer the same point I made about Carolina last week: While the situation looks bad, it will be especially meaningful if the Colts manage to win. If they pull off the upset against New England, not only will they have taken out the top two seeds in the AFC on the road to the Super Bowl, but they’ll have done it by avenging two losses from earlier in the year.Charts by Reuben Fischer-Baum. The NFL is down to its final four Super Bowl contenders, and it’s quite a group. All of them are division winners, and each has 13 wins on the ledger. Picking a favorite is tricky. The New England Patriots are a tempting choice, having led the NFL in SRS (“Simple Rating System,” or margin of victory adjusted for strength of schedule), as well as having been one of the greatest dynasties in NFL history. Yet the other three teams have all won championships more recently. The AFC championship game features an old rivalry with a new face. And the NFC championship arguably features the league’s best offense against the league’s best defense. So, you know, this weekend should be boring.According to bookmakers, the weakest of these teams — by a healthy margin — is the Indianapolis Colts. Futures markets give them about 15-2 odds to win it all. After accounting for house advantage, that implies that gamblers thinks the Colts have about a 10 percent chance of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy on Feb. 1.It’s fitting that the biggest underdogs left in the playoffs are led by Andrew Luck — the Hacker Gods’ vicar on Earth — who seems to be on a mission to prove that you have to be willing to lose to win.Last week, Luck even made the interceptions he threw while in the lead (normally a big no-no) look good, throwing deep on third-and-longs — 43 yards downfield on third-and-12 in the second quarter, and then 37 yards downfield on third-and-13 in the third. No one throws deep interceptions quite like Luck, and after he casually shrugged them off on Sunday, even old-guard commentators noted how downfield interceptions are really just like punts.1But with more upside!Whether Luck’s relentless approach will translate into playoff glory remains to be seen. But in the meantime, there’s good news and bad news for the Colts.The good newsThe Colts have faced the toughest road of the teams left standing. Last week in this column, I examined the “trial by fire” effect in the NFL playoffs — the phenomenon by which wild-card-round veterans appear to get stronger and stronger the deeper they go into the playoffs.2Note, this doesn’t mean they are actually getting stronger; it means that only the strongest of them survive the trials.
*Includes more than one stint as manager.Source: Baseball Gauge MLB’s 2017 class of departing managers is unusually good On the flip side, there have been 22 Yankee managers since 1903 that lasted fewer than four seasons — some across multiple tenures. And it’s not like these were all losers: Of those 22, 13 managers posted records of .500 or better. Girardi ranked only sixth in manager points among Yankee skippers — behind everyone else who managed 10+ years — but was poised to add to his total considering the franchise’s position.The future looks bright for New York. Between the emerging youngsters, a promising farm system and the capacity to spend hundreds of millions of dollars, the Yankees are on track to contend for years to come. It’s hard to say how much of their success in the past decade belongs to Girardi, but all the available metrics suggest he was an above-average skipper. Now the Yankees will need to find someone else to preside over their bright future, and it may not be as easy as management thinks.Neil Paine contributed research.CLARIFICATION (Oct. 26, 2017, 4:30 p.m.): The source of our data for managers’ postseason success, The Baseball Gauge, credits managers with a World Series win even if they managed only part of the season in question. The story has been updated to clarify Billy Martin’s relationship with the 1978 Yankees, who won the World Series that year.CORRECTION (Oct. 27, 2017, 4:20 p.m.): A previous version of this article incorrectly said Joe Girardi chose to not review a pivotal call in the ALCS. The play in question occurred in the ALDS. 1197162.6 41973111.6 9200061.2 Joe McCarthy1931-46 (16 yrs.).62787107.3 YEARMANAGERS LET GOAVG. MANAGER POINTS THAT YEAR 62011111.5 10199871.1 8199761.2 Source: Baseball Gauge 3201361.7 5200671.6 71978111.3 Yankee skippers have lofty standardsHow the 10 longest-tenured New York managers compare Miller Huggins1918-29 (12).5976370.3 MANAGERTENUREWIN %ALWSTOTAL MANAGER PTS Joe Girardi2008-17 (10).5621139.0 This year has featured an unusual level of managerial turnover. Nationals skipper Dusty Baker and Red Sox head John Farrell were also fired despite leading their teams to the playoffs. Using manager points, a Baseball Gauge metric that sums up record and playoff benchmarks, this group of managers qualifies as the second most accomplished set of unemployed skippers since 1969.1These numbers do not prorate regular season performance or postseason accomplishment for managers fired midseason. And according to Elias Sports, this is the first time three playoff teams switched managers in the same offseason — which is remarkable considering the offseason still hasn’t officially begun.Of the three unemployed skippers, Girardi might have been the best. He didn’t have the pitcher-destroying reputation of Dusty Baker or the tactical problems of John Farrell. Over 10 years as the Yankees’ manager, Girardi racked up 910 wins, earning a winning record each season. He was helped by massive budgets, but he also presided over multiple failed free agent contracts that landed the team in a cycle of rebuilding. This year, the Yankees seemed to be on their way to championship contention, and Girardi took them deep into the ALCS before losing to the Houston Astros.Girardi had his weaknesses. He inexplicably benched star catcher Gary Sanchez toward the end of the season. He made the unwise decision not to review a call in a pivotal game of this year’s ALDS, and it could have cost the Yankees dearly. But overall, Girardi was a good tactician: From his bullpen management to taking advantage of platoon splits, he often put his team in the best position to win.The other knock on Girardi was that he failed to develop young players. This season ought to have disproved that, however: With the emergence of Aaron Judge, Sanchez and Luis Severino, the Yankees have one of the best up-and-coming cores in baseball. By wins above replacement, the Yankees’ age-27-and-under hitters were the fourth most productive in baseball, and their young pitchers were second in the league.As strange as it may seem considering his win percentage, Joe Girardi was actually given a long leash by the standards of the Yankees brass. Six managers in Yankees history maintained their positions for 10 or more years,2Ralph Houk did it across two different stints. and all but Girardi won multiple championships in that time. (The Baseball Gauge credits Billy Martin with winning a World Series with the Yankees in 1978 even though he left the team midseason. He did manage the majority of that team’s games.) Clark Griffith1903-08 (6).531009.3 TITLES Joe Torre1996-2007 (12).6056494.1 2201762.0 Billy Martin1975-88 (8)*.5913235.8 Buck Showalter1992-95 (4).539008.3 After he brought the team to the brink of the World Series, manager Joe Girardi was let go by the Yankees on Thursday. Girardi’s tenure included a championship and 10 years in which the team was usually a playoff contender, but it wasn’t enough to save him from Yankees’ management and their exacting standards. In a postseason full of questionable firings, Girardi’s release will go down as one of the strangest. Casey Stengel1949-60 (12).623107106.1 Bob Lemon1978-82 (4)*.576218.6 Ralph Houk1961-73 (11)*.5393242.0
San Diego Humane Society offers free pet food to federal employees affected by the shutdown Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, Posted: January 13, 2019 SAN DIEGO (KUSI)- The San Diego Humane Society is offering free pet food for federal workers who are affected by the shutdown.On Monday, Jan. 14, the PAWS San Diego team will set up temporary distribution centers at all three of San Diego Human Society campuses (Oceanside, Escondido and San Diego) from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. You may receive two bags of pet food per family: 1 dog + 1 cat OR 2 dog or 2 cat (dog food = 8 lbs. and cat food = 4 lbs.).To receive the free pet food, you need to bring proof of federal employment like an ID card or pay stub.All food will be available on a first come, first serve basis. January 13, 2019